From Afar: Charts and Their Analysts

Alex Preda

in Framing Finance

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print July 2009 | ISBN: 9780226679310
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226679334 | DOI:
From Afar: Charts and Their Analysts

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This chapter deals with a specific dimension of the boundaries of finance: the mediation of value judgments by securities analysts. It traces the emergence of chartists as a specific group in relation to the new kind of price data generated by the stock ticker. Occasional and unsystematic evaluation of securities had always taken place, and financial information had always been collected, more or less systematically. The new price data, however, boosted efforts to predict future prices movements and, with them, the value of securities. Some brokers left financial transactions and moved into price interpretation. They diligently began selling their intellectual product around, and so technical analysis was thus born. The chapter examines, how using memoirs, letters, journal articles, and manuals, a group of former brokers and statisticians successfully marketed price charts and technical analyses to investors and stock brokers alike. Contrary to the assumption that the growing complexity and mass of financial information required this sort of cognitive intermediation, it shows here how intermediaries created a demand for this sort of product.

Keywords: boundaries of finance; marketed price charts; stock brokers; investors; statisticians; financial information; stock ticker; securities analysts; price data; future price movements

Chapter.  11423 words. 

Subjects: Sociology

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