Martin Barnes and a Level Forecasting Field

Barry Ritholtz is a Bloomberg View columnist. He founded Ritholtz Wealth Management and was chief executive and director of equity research at FusionIQ, a quantitative research firm. He blogs at the Big Picture and is the author of “Bailout Nation: How Greed and Easy Money Corrupted Wall Street and Shook the World Economy.”
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This week on Masters in Business I sit down with an old fishing buddy -- Martin Barnes, chief economist of BCA Research.

Barnes discusses how a global client base of sovereign wealth funds, hedge funds, pension funds and central banks demands actionable intelligence, whether for an immediate trade or to craft a strategy measured in decades. We also discussed the errors in the Federal Reserve’s forecasting record, and how it levels the playing field for all economic analysts. Barnes, who has worked at BCA for 30 years, explains why the Fed’s models -- indeed, all econometric models based upon the past -- can lead us astray. He also notes that the Fed’s effort to promote transparency has swung too far and that the central bank should act more and talk less.

You can hear the full interview, including our podcast extras, at iTunes, Soundcloud and Bloomberg. All of our earlier podcasts can be found at iTunesSoundcloud and Bloomberg.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.

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Barry Ritholtz at

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James Greiff at