Six cautionary tales

2008 Investment Guides Are HILARIOUS the New York Magazine. Of course, these folks are now giving advice for 2009—and being paid for it. A representative sample:

Jon Birger, senior writer, Fortune’s Investors Guide 2008

What he said then: “Question: What do you call it when an $8 billion asset write-down translates into a $30 billion loss in market cap? Answer: an overreaction … Smart investors should buy [Merrill Lynch] stock before everyone else comes to their senses.”

What we know now: Merrill agreed to sell itself Bank of America to avoid a Lehman-like flameout in a deal closing in January. Meanwhile, Merrill’s shares plummeted 77 percent.

via Barry Ritholtz

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