Temperature Stock Report

Interesting quote of the week:

If Global Warming were a stock, and you bought it in 1979 at zero (par) and decided to sell it this month to buy a house, 29 years later you aren’t very happy with your investment. At it’s peak in 1998, the temperature only went to a 0.8 increase, and in April it dipped to very nearly unchanged. (From Charles Noland, Blue Skies)


I never thought of it that way. Sell!

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June 12, 2008 7:58 am

Actually its worse than that. In degrees Kelvin, the temperature rose from (about) 288 to 288.8 at the peak of the ‘bubble’. That’s a whopping 0.28% increase between 1979 and 1998.

Evan Jones
June 12, 2008 8:24 am

You’d need a different trendline. A straight line segment connecting point of entry and final point only.

June 12, 2008 8:49 am

I am glad that I never said, “Buy!” However, Anthony is doing a great job of convincing people that selling is the right move on AGW.

June 12, 2008 9:38 am

….. Yeah, but in order to sell…. you’d need some sucker to buy..!
: )

June 12, 2008 9:42 am

D’oh…. I fergot……… There’s one born every minute…..
Bluddy must be, if Gore could sell AGW and get a Noble Peace Prize for it…
God….. now I’m depressed. : (

Evan Jones
June 12, 2008 9:51 am

Don’t worry. The Nobel Beauty Prize has more prestige these days.

June 12, 2008 10:03 am

In the end, we may find that Gore sold warming at its peak.
It’s a pity that the buyers have the ability to levy taxes.

June 12, 2008 10:07 am

In other words:
Gore sold peaked warming.
Buyers bought it lock, stock, and barrel.
Now comes new taxes.
American colonial references sure take the Japanese accent out of haiku!

Retired Engineer
June 12, 2008 11:31 am

I think Gore sold us out. The way the candidates are talking, we’ll pay for it for a very long time.
OT: Anthony, how’s the fire situation? Heard Chico on the news, houses burning and such. Doesn’t sound good. That kind of warming we can do without.
REPLY: 6k acres, several homes burned, north winds still driving it…I’m ok it is south of me.

June 12, 2008 11:35 am

Looks clearly like a descending triangle with decreased support. The bottom is about to fall out of it!

Diatribical Idiot
June 12, 2008 11:39 am

As a skeptic, I hate to try and undermine an argument that tries to put things in perspective, but I also have to be honest… To be fair, this is really not a good analogy at all. The stock value is the cumulative effect of years of increases. If that cumulative value drops precipitiously in a month, it’s a tragic event that has just completely undid everything that was accomplished in the previous years up until that point. If temperatures track consistently high/low, and there is one anomalously low/high month, that one month doesn’t undo the cumulative effects of all those warm/cool months.
It might be more accurate to say that the anomaly of temperatures can be compared to the deviations of the stock market versus the average increase on a month by month basis, though I’m actually not sure what the value is in this line of comparison at all.

June 12, 2008 12:54 pm

It may illustrate the point, but this analogy of temperature curves to the stock market is kind of apples-to-oranges misleading. Stocks return dividends on the investment as well as appreciation that is based on the productivity of the collection of companies in the market. That is, they convert human activity into value that accumulates. Temperature curves don’t include much of the productivity (ie, the little bit of sunlight energy remaining as new biomass and sequestered heat in the deep ocean after the vast majority has re-radiated into space).

Don B
June 12, 2008 1:06 pm

Since many of us do not “own” AGW, we would have to sell short.
Potential buyers can be found on Andrew Revkin’s science blog in the NY Times. Most commenting there have touching, religious faith and simply do not believe facts which might undermine the accepted theory.

Steve Stip
June 12, 2008 2:02 pm

Yes, why was online trading on predictions, such as Intrade made illegal in the US? What a great way to put one’s money where one’s mouth was.

June 12, 2008 3:07 pm

Gary (12:54:10) said:
“It may illustrate the point, but this analogy of temperature curves to the stock market is kind of apples-to-oranges misleading. Stocks return dividends on the investment as well as appreciation that is based on the productivity of the collection of companies in the market.”
And right about now, very few people are seeing any “interest” in this “prospectus”.

June 12, 2008 6:08 pm

And right about now, very few people are seeing any “interest” in this “prospectus”.
Buy low, sell high. 😉 The gov’t has caused a lot of the problems in the market just as it is about to cause a lot of problems with responding to warming (or potential cooling). The Fed devaluing the currency, the regulators encouraging the hedge fund speculation, the Congress wasting money on the “rebates”, etc. Save us from our “saviors.”

June 12, 2008 7:45 pm

You guys are all wrong (dia. idiot, etc.). Stock price is based on future earnings. Stock price has no relation to past performance. Also, dividends have little effect on stock price even though companies that issue dividends like to think otherwise. Look at Microsoft or Dell (between 1991 and 2005), did they ever pay dividends? By doing so, did it ever hurt their stock price? No and No. Since following GW (or not) for the past 4 months, I can’t think of a better analogy than the stock market. People who don’t accept this analogy don’t seem to have a good understanding of the stock market, in my opinion.

June 12, 2008 8:42 pm

Now, I’ll weigh in. Stock prices are a bubble driven by the Fed’s incessant creation of new money. What does a piece of common stock buy you except a small divident (sometimes) and the right to vote in shareholder meetings (seldom and rarely intelligently exercised) and the right to sell to a greater fool?

June 12, 2008 9:32 pm

Ignore the decadel averages part, I changed my mind on what would be the best way to devise the terms halfway through writing, and didn’t proofread it before posting. Also, mia culpa on the formatting snafu.

June 12, 2008 9:34 pm

Such a wimpy bet from Gavin and Tammiekins. Those ladies have no guts whatsoever.
A real bet? No caveats, either it warms or it doesn’t.
And I would insist on the UAH records not the mystery incantations coming out of Hadrut or GISS.

June 12, 2008 9:38 pm

Exceeding two standard deviations over a no warming trend is a reasonable definition of “warming”. You aren’t going to get many people willing to bet that the third Tuesday in May 2013 will be warmer than the third Tuesday in May this year…
As far as caveats go, I’d argue that singling out exceptional sustained volcanism and meteor hits is perfectly reasonable, since neither can be predicted in advance and both can have significant climate impacts on a decadal timescale. Just make sure to strictly define what exactly exceptional volcanism would be, so its not a potential way to weasel out.

June 12, 2008 9:46 pm

Sorry, those ladies have no…I’m really at a loss for finding family friendly synonyms, end of story.

June 12, 2008 9:48 pm


June 12, 2008 10:01 pm

You know, for someone skeptical of the correlation between CO2 and warming, you certainly are quick to entertain a correlation between gender and bravery.
On a more serious note, its really not that complicated a bet. Hell, the picture is simple enough: http://tamino.files.wordpress.com/2008/01/bet3.jpg

June 12, 2008 10:13 pm

Z, you’re a funny guy.
I didn’t say complicated. I said wimpy. Too many outs and caveats.
I also didn’t say they were ladies because they have no courage. I simply said those particular ladies have no courage. I know plenty of ladies with great courage, especially the single moms, and one pro boxer.
jeez is now going out to North Beach so you will hear no more from him tonight.
Note, I edited my own post.

sandy winder
June 13, 2008 12:49 am

If I held shares in global warming I would be not just holding onto them but buying more. The trend is your friend. And the long term trend is still rising.
I care not for temporary blips, which not only have occurred many times but it would be very strange if they had not occurred many times.
If I held shares in any company on the stock exchange and sold them every time they fell I would never make any money.
The fact that last year was the second warmest on record for the Northern Hemisphere, beaten only by 2005, is not exactly making me turn bearish.

June 13, 2008 5:23 am

You sound like you would have been one of those poor investors who in 1999 held on to worthless stock like pets.com thinking that the $350 share price would continue to rise despite zero earnings. Or, perhaps you were still buying up expensive real estate in early 2007 despite the Fed raising interest rates. Or maybe you are now buying oil futures on margin thinking that the trend in oil prices will continue to sky-rocket despite falling global demand. I suppose you are one of those investors who see an endless increase in prices no matter what.
Yes, the NH is responsible for about 60% of the the current positive anomaly. However, I would be a little worried. The SH is mainly oceans. Oceans store thermal energy over a much greater time than does land (thankfully). The oceans haven’t shown any increase in SSTs for over 3 years now -despite an El Nino event from 2006-2007. The SH hasn’t warmed at all in nearly a decade. The long term trend of the oceans is cooling, not warming, even in the NH.

June 13, 2008 6:09 am

the trend is flat. Which almost all my stocks have been for 2 years. Heh.

Don B
June 13, 2008 6:37 am

Sandy Winder, if 2005 and 2007 were the two warmest years on record for the Northern Hemisphere, one would presume that new US state high temperature records were set in those years and in this decade. The link shows temperature records by state through 2003, and the decade with the most is the 1930’s beating second place 1990’s by 4 to 1, with no new record highs in years 2000-2003. Do you have updated records which include 2004-2007?

John Finn
June 13, 2008 8:24 am

Whatever your view of the long term this must be a time to buy – end of La Nina, increasing SSTs, solar minimum – the only way is up.

June 13, 2008 8:37 am

Do stocks and shares have anything in common with climate?
They are both parts of systems – but that’s presumably about it, as their systems are subject to different factors.
In the UK, David Attenborough teamed up with the Met’ Office which has done huge amounts of analysis and concluded the reality of climate change due to industrialisation, importantly looking at long term trends rather than short term blips.
Making things complicated can obscure the big picture. So does anyone have a simple long term analysis to ounter David Attenborough’s?

Jeff Alberts
June 13, 2008 1:08 pm

If I held shares in global warming I would be not just holding onto them but buying more. The trend is your friend. And the long term trend is still rising.

Actually the long term trend is flat, if you go back to the MWP and RWP. Oh, not that long term? Just long enough to prove a rising trend, right?

sandy winder
June 13, 2008 3:41 pm

There’s no if about it, Don.
The USA is only a small part of the Northern Hemisphere, despite what many Americans think. It accounts for only about 6% of the Northern hemisphere.
Have look at the Fig 4 graphs which shows the Global and USA charts.
I think AGW sceptics would have the honesty to acknowledge that the USA only constitutes a tiny part of the globe and what happens in the whole world is what matters, rather than just a small fraction of it.
But it does matter what happens in the Northern hemisphere because if/when the Greenland ice sheet melts, the earth’s sea level will rise 7 metres.
JP, you are falling for the old ‘cherry picking’ strategy again.
Had you invested in a basket of stocks (or index) 40 years ago you would be far wealthier today than sticking your money in the bank or under the mattress.
You should buy in the temporary dips in the indexes and leave your money where it is.
Stocks will continue to rise overall in the long term just as temperatures will continue to rise. But neither will rise in a straight line and a few stocks may indeed fail, just as some areas of the globe will not necessarily rise as quickly as others.
The only cooling of the oceans is due to melting ice, a process which is increasing rapidly. But when all that disappears what is going to cool them then? The ice will not reflect back the sunlight back into the atmosphere but will warm the land and the oceans they have vacated instead. So you are right to be a little worried.

sandy winder
June 13, 2008 3:59 pm

Jeff, only as far back as the date when carbon dioxide in the atmosphere started to rise significantly due to the industrial revolution.
Nobody is arguing that other factors besides man have not affected the climate of the planet in the past. Yet many of these factors at various times were also life based. Think of all the chalk and limestone that stores carbon far more effectively than the oceans or the atmosphere. Fossil fuels are not the only form of life based carbon deposits. Think how cyanobacteria helped create all the oxygen in the atmosphere and what the climate would be like had there been no life. Without oxygen there would be no ozone layer.
If all the carbon dioxide held in the rocks was to be freed, the CO2 level would undoubtedly rise alarmingly and temperatures would soar as they have done on Venus.
Can someone explain to me why they think global temperatures were much warmer 200 million years ago when the sun’s output was far less than it is today ?

Steve Stip
June 13, 2008 4:23 pm

All non-organic emissions of carbon might be eliminated within 50 years or so.
Would this be enough to satisfy you?

Jeff Alberts
June 13, 2008 5:27 pm

Jeff, only as far back as the date when carbon dioxide in the atmosphere started to rise significantly due to the industrial revolution.

So a date when we know it was generally cooler to a date we know is generally warmer. My point is that there have been warmer periods so nothing we’re seeing is unprecedented and no reason to assume anything catastrophic is going on.
And comparing the Earth to Venus is extremely disingenuous. We know absolutely nothing about the history of Venus, but we DO know it’s ~27 million miles closer to the sun. Why would you think CO2 did it when the furnace is a lot warmer there?

Evan Jones
June 13, 2008 9:35 pm

The fact that last year was the second warmest on record for the Northern Hemisphere, beaten only by 2005, is not exactly making me turn bearish.
NASA adjusts bad
Cycle 24 missing
Gimme UAH

June 14, 2008 7:17 am

Hang on – if there was any kind of a ‘buy’ trend in our lifetime, we’d all be dead soon. There is a difference between the stock market (can you pick a winner?) and the climate (lets pray stability or we are all losers)

dennis ward
June 15, 2008 2:52 am

Jeff, yes Venus is closer to the sun but not THAT much closer that it would be so hot without the 97-ish per cent of carbon dioxide in its’ atmosphere. Check it out.
“This dense atmosphere produces a run-away greenhouse effect that raises Venus’ surface temperature by about 400 degrees to over 740 K (hot enough to melt lead). Venus’ surface is actually hotter than Mercury’s despite being nearly twice as far from the Sun.”
And of course there have been warmer periods in the past. And all have has a reason for being warmer or colder, whether it was distance from the sun, the earths’ tilt, the heat from inside the earth, the changes in the sun, and the changes from the earth’s life-forms, of which we are but one of many.

dennis ward
June 15, 2008 2:53 am

By the way the list above is not a full list, just examples.

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