Jul 08, 2011

The Smartest Man in Europe Is Very Cautious

Usually we have our discussions in hotels or offices, but this year I spent a weekend with him at his summer home on the Mediterranean in France.  There, surrounded by his impressive paintings and sculpture, we talked about the current outlook for global investors.  I wrote my first essay about these meetings in 2001 and it was called “The Smartest Man in Europe Is Upbeat.”  His mood was very different this year.

While there have been times in the past decade when The Smartest Man has sounded gloomy, I thought he seemed especially somber in these discussions.  I mentioned that to him and he responded, “It’s true that I am somewhat anxious, but you should talk to some of my friends.  They think the situation is cataclysmic.”

As usual, he gave me plenty to think about until our next meeting.  I am much more positive on the near-term outlook than he is and I hope I am not delusional.

Click here to register for the Wednesday, July 13, 2011, 11:00am ET Blackstone Webcast: Byron Wien presents “Stronger Economy and Market in the Second Half”.

The webcast presentation will be downloadable from the interface at the time of the event, and webcast replays will be available beginning Monday, July 18, 2011.

Contact Information:

The Blackstone Group L.P.
345 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10154
212 583 5000

Byron Wien
The Blackstone Group
345 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10154
Tel: 212.583.5055