Markets are governed by two things: math and story.
Math is simple. #x 2019 it &;s reality, the principles and the underlying supply and demand for all those’s being traded. Where human psychology enters the picture, the narrative is. It’s exactly what causes individuals move in herds to extrapolate wildly, and swing to optimism from bouts of pessimism. Though in the end, raw math eventually wins out, markets can whipsaw based on story alone.
Markets are in their most exciting when people are completely in the driver & #x 2019 once the gap between math and narrative is massive;s seat and prices bear any resemblance to reality. Because love is the other area where swept up in can diverge so sharply from actuality bearing this in mind, a bubble is the perfect setting for a play.
This is the premise of , a movie set in 17th century Amsterdam through tulip mania, an episode that’s come to be synonymous with bubbles. According to the 1999 Deborah Moggach publication of the same title, tells the story of a wealthy Dutchman, Cornelis Sandvoort (Christoph Waltz), and his beautiful, bored young wife, Sophia (Alicia Vikander), who falls in love with Jan (Dane DeHaan), a painter commissioned to produce the couple’s portrait.
You might expect the love aspects of this plot to the markets part and predominate to receive short shrift. While the romantic angle for the bunch is a bit tired, but in it & #x 2019; s the financial story that & #x 2019; s fascinating. In the end, I just didn’t care if Sophia and Jan worked things out.
The movie does provide interesting lessons on the nature of riches and money, though. At one point, Jan explains to Sophia that the blue found in the great Renaissance paintings was called &#x 201D; ultramarine & #x 201C; because it needed to be imported from throughout the sea. A commodity’s value may come not only from its utility but also from the difficulty of its attainment.
Meanwhile, the actual tulip bulbs’ exchange is particularly illuminating. The bulbs themselves are left for safekeeping in an abbey while the trading occurs in a tavern, full of prostitutes and drunks. This dichotomy between a house of worship and a bar is the manifestation of Karl Marx’#x 201C & s composition;The Power of Money. ” In it, Marx credits Shakespeare with identifying two essential properties of money: At times it’s divine, and at times it’s “the common whore of mankind,” since the Bard wrote in .
The movie emphasizes—perhaps overemphasizes—how similar bubbles and love are. Sophia and Jan hatch a plot to escape together that entails a pregnancy, a death, and an fortune. Only in their wildest fever dream could they really have thought it would work (just like the speculators who believed the price of tulip bulbs could just go up). In the end, the cold reality of their situation (the math) wins out. Their plan results in catastrophe.
The manager, Justin Chadwick, nevertheless manages to end on an note, one that seems discordant with heartbreaks and bubbles culminate. Of course, the presence of the movie is sort of a happy ending, since numerous impediments beset the production over the years that slowed its release. There just aren’t films that delve into fund and money’s disposition, therefore it’s a good thing this one finally came out.
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