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Pithy Sayings


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Banking is not the creator of our prosperity but the creation of it. It is not the cause of our wealth, but it is the consequence of our wealth; and if the industrial energy and development ... were to be hindered or relaxed, then finance and all that finance means, will follow trade to the countries which are more successful than ourselves.
[Joseph Chamberlain, 1904, British politician]

People in the cheaper seats clap, the rest of you just rattle your jewels.
[John Lennon of The Beatles playing at the Prince of Wales Theatre, London in 1963]

When Bobby got back from Las Vegas, he said he noticed he was pausing just a little bit longer than usual after putting his money into parking meters and Xerox machines.
[From Stories from the Nerve Bible by Laurie Anderson, 1994]

While markets appear to work in practice, we are not sure how they work in theory.
[Professor Maureen O'Hara, financial economist, quoted in The Wisdom of Crowds by James Surowiecki, 2004]

Buy low and sell high
[Attributed to Jesse Livermore, 1877 to 1940, in Hedgehogging by Barton Biggs, 2006]

I simply cannot help making money. I will tell you my secret if you wish. It is this: I never buy at the bottom and I always sell too soon.
[Attributed to Baron Rothchild in Reminiscences of a Stock Operator by Edwin Lefèvre, 1922]

I'm not so much after the gold part, because I gotta tell you, I've been to many funerals, unfortunately, and every time I go, I look very carefully—nobody's taking anything with them.
[Issac Larian, CEO of MGA Entertainment, quoted in The Real Toy Story by Eric Clark, 2007]

He [Mr. Micawber] solemnly conjured me, I remember, to take warning by his fate; and to observe that if a man had twenty pounds a year for his income, and spent nineteen pounds nineteen shillings and sixpence, he would be happy, but that if he spent twenty pounds one he would be miserable.
[From David Copperfield by Charles Dickens, 1850]

People who live within their means tend to be happier and less stressed. That's true not only for the obvious reason — they know their financial futures look bright — but also because they're not consumed with consumption. They're not in the emotionally and financially draining race to acquire the most stuff they possibly can. A race that, it should be noted, has no finish line and thus no winner.
[From The Wealthy Barber Returns by David Chilton, 2011]

[W]hat thoughtful rich people call the problem of poverty, thoughtful poor people call with equal justice the problem of riches, ...
[From Poverty as an Industrial Problem by Richard H Tawney, 1913]

With all the unrest in the world, I don't think anybody should have a yacht that sleeps more than twelve.
[Tony Curtis, in the film Some Like It Hot, 1959]

We don't pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes.
[Attributed to Leona Helmsley during her trial for tax evasion in 1989 by a former housekeeper]

Tax shelters are to democracy what pollution is to the environment.
[David Cay Johnston, 1948 to ?, tax expert]

Financial Advice: You're not rich enough to get richer
[A cartoon by Grizelda (Grizelda Grizlingham) in Private Eye, Number 1364, 18 April 2014, page 33]

If your doctrine says that free markets, left to their own devices, produce the best of all possible worlds, and that government intervention in the economy always makes things worse, Keynes is your enemy. And he is an especially dangerous enemy because his ideas have been vindicated so thoroughly by experience.
[Paul Krugman, 1953 to ?, economist]

The speculative public is incorrigible. In financial terms it cannot count beyond 3. It will buy anything, at any price, if there seems to be some "action" in progress. It will fall for any company identified with "franchising," computers, electronics, science, technology, or what have you [the Internet], when the particular fashion is raging.
[From The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham, 1973]

The man knew everything, apparently because he had a lot of money.
[From The Dispossessed by Ursula K Le Guin, 1974]

Stop spending money you don't have to buy things you don't need to impress people who don't matter.
[From "Stop acting rich and start being rich" by Gail Vaz-Oxlade in Calgary Metro, March 28, 2016]

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