Previously: 2021 ACX Predictions B/S/H, 2021 ACX Results Analysis
It’s that time again. Scott’s predictions are live and I am here for it. I also have a response in the works for a different ACX post, but that requires editing, and this doesn’t.
I will play by Scott’s rules, since that’s only fair. For each question, there’s a five minute time limit, and checking prediction markets isn’t allowed until the prediction is locked. Checking financial markets is fine.
1. Biden approval rating (as per 538) is greater than fifty percent: 40%
Sell to 30%. Biden is highly unlikely to have any great accomplishments in 2022 other than confirming a new supreme court justice. Presidents get smashed in midterms, which is indicative of generally low popularity around that time. Also with the way popularity works now 50% would be substantially above par. As we’ve seen, many Democrats disapprove of Biden when he doesn’t get things done the way they’d like, and the Republicans sure aren’t approving, also Fed is going to be raising interest rates to control inflation and inflation isn’t going to fully go away within a year, so getting to 50% in time seems really tough.
2. At least $250 million in damage from a single round of mass protests in US: 10%
Buy to 15%. This is not that high a bar, as the Floyd protests seem to have been around $2 billion on a very quick Google search, the Rodney King riots over $800 million. Note that this does not say it has to be BLM protests, it can be caused by anything. That includes anti-Covid-restriction protests, inflation protests, and a number of other plausible candidates. Cutting this down so dramatically from previous estimates while also expanding what counts seems like an overreaction, especially with so much more to protest about coming soon, and I’m going to buy.
3. PredictIt thinks Joe Biden is most likely 2024 Dem nominee: 80%
Hold. For there to be a particular other more likely candidate, a lot has to go wrong or Biden’s health needs to be failing rather badly. Biden simply saying he won’t run might be enough if he is explicitly endorsing Harris but I don’t sense that Harris is earning that nod and isn’t proving to be a strong politician or ally. There’s no one in the wings other than Harris who looks like they could draw together the field enough to be an outright favorite if Biden is in similar health to today. But a year is a long time at this point, and PredictIt’s Scottish teens are often stupid, so I’m not wiling to go higher than this. How confident can you be in the accuracy of people who keep giving substantial probability to Hillary Clinton?
4: …thinks Donald Trump is most likely 2024 GOP nominee: 60%
Buy to 70%. Once again, this is a question of an obvious answer versus a broad field. It seems like a very heavy lift for someone else like DeSantis to be an outright favorite over Trump, even if Trump’s position looks worse. There’s not that much one of them can do to take his place before the fight begins. Even if Trump says he’s not running, who would believe him enough to flip the field? Here there’s plausible worlds where Trump is in sufficient legal trouble that he won’t be able to run, but even then it seems like it would take a lot. His health is similar. Of course, that doesn’t mean the Scottish Teens will be sane, so we don’t want to go too high.
5. Beijing Olympics happen successfully on schedule: 99%
Sell to 98%. I don’t know what ‘successfully on schedule’ means here exactly but the chances that a Covid outbreak in the Olympic village makes it seem ‘unsuccessful’ seems like it has to be more than 1% likely. How much farther to go depends on better defining our terms here.
6. Major flare-up (worse than past 5 years) in Russia/Ukraine conflict: 50%
Sell to 30%, assuming I understand the threshold correctly as a shooting war of some kind involving real Russian troops, and diplomatic crisis does not count, nor does a few ‘rebels’ causing trouble. I’m a skeptic on that. Risk definitely isn’t zero, this is more than the usual brinksmanship, but it isn’t in anyone’s interests to have an actual shooting war and our vital interests aren’t really all that threatened. In general I’m not that interested in moving things farther than this without a market reference point, so I’m stopping at 30%, but I definitely notice I don’t expect anything big to happen.
7. Major flare-up (worse past 10 years) in Israel/Palestine conflict: 5%
Hold. If defined better and sufficiently broadly, would potentially buy to 10%.
Quote from last year’s identical question, opinion hasn’t changed: The last ten years have been unusually quiet here, so it arguably would take very little to count as a major flare up here, but vagueness of what ‘major’ means makes it tough. With a tighter definition I might buy to 10%, if it’s wide enough maybe a little higher. Otherwise, hold.
8. Major flare-up (worse than in past 50 years) in China/Taiwan conflict: 5%
Sell to 3% again. Even if there’s a shooting war in Ukraine we’re not going to commit our forces there so much it would make China want to start something in response often enough for me to worry about it.
9. Honduran ZEDEs legally crippled to the point where no reasonable person would invest in them further: 5%
Buy to 7%. I mean, would a reasonable person invest in them now? To me, they already seem ‘legally crippled’ in the sense that they could plausibly be crippled in the future and a major political side wants to cripple them, assuming I’m not confusing different similar things here. Given the history of third world countries confiscating first world stuff in their vicinity even when their long term interests are not thereby served, I’m guessing this happens more than 5% of years (but I know little of the details, so not willing to be too bold), but even if it’s 5%/year chance of this happening, would you invest?
10. New ZEDE approved in Honduras: 30%
Hold due to lack of information.
11. Gamestop stock price still above $100: 30%
Hold. It was below 100 when I was evaluating last year’s predictions, but it’s back at 112 as I type this. It’s probably going down, but it’s held on this long and I hesitate to go out on too big a limb here.
12. Bitcoin above 100K: 20%
13. Ethereum above 5K: 20%
Great news, I can no longer call this absurdly bullish on crypto like I used to do every year. These numbers are sane, and only represent a reasonable fraction of current value.
This would be almost a tripling of BTC but only a doubling of ETH. Intuitively, a 20% chance of ETH doubling, to only 25% more than its all-time high, seems if anything a little low. I’ll buy that to 25%. The BTC move is bigger, so to be consistent I should probably be at like 18% on that. Keeping it intuitive and not doing detailed math seems to be in the spirit here.
14. Ethereum above 0.05 BTC: 90%
Sell to 80%. It’s above this right now, but not by all that much. If crypto is down by half I would expect this to no longer hold true.
15. Bored Ape floor price here below current price of $203K: 40%
It says current floor price is $325K USD, very different than $203K, and also says it hasn’t been at $203K for a long time. I’m going to interpret this as ‘below current price’ rather than ‘below $203k.’ I’ll also be back now to the usual ‘this is insanely bullish on Crypto’ line since Bored Apes could easily get absurdly pricey if people get sufficiently excited to bid up Bored Apes, but go to zero far more often than Ether does. This is an asymmetric asset and 40% doesn’t cut it. Sell to 30%, hedge with apes if it gets big enough.
16. Dow above 35K: 90%
Dude, 90% for the market to net up? What the hell? Same as I do every year, sell the 90% down to 70%, buy index funds. Or of course check the binary options price.
17. ...above 37.5K: 40%
That’s only a 8% rise, seems plausibly slightly higher than the median. My guess is this is a little high, but given the other option I’m going to sit tight.
18. Inflation for the year below five percent: 90%
Sell to 80%. Does Scott realize it was 7% in 2021? I’m not saying I expect it to be that high again, but let’s be real. I checked TIPS spreads and saw the 2023 version selling at 2.7%, and that’s keeping me from hammering this, but also my lord would I love to buy this year’s inflation at 2.7%, remind me once again what the EMH is? I love me some Team Transitory but this is ridiculous.
19. Unemployment below five percent: 50%
Buy to 70%. This is 3.9% now despite the pandemic and the pandemic is ending. The Fed might tighten enough to trigger a bit more unemployment, but it seems crazy to think it’s not a solid favorite to stay below 5%.
20. Google widely allows remote work, no questions asked: 50%
Sell to 20% if this has been regraded to false for 2021, as per many Google employees responding to point out that questions most definitely get asked. If it gets regraded to Mu, 30%. If it stays as true and current rules are treated as sufficient, 40%. But it seems clear Google doesn’t want people remote indefinitely, so if remote no longer makes any sense I expect them not to even use current rules. It’s more that this 50% is throwing me.
21. Starship reaches orbit: 90%
Going to slightly sell this to 89% on priors that this is likely to be overconfident a bit, but I don’t know anything and that’s not a prediction. Would move to market instantly.
22. Fewer than 10K daily average official COVID cases in US in December 2022: 20%
I took the full five minutes and I’m going to buy this to 25%. This is basically a bet that Covid mostly doesn’t become endemic and instead dies off. It requires that there not be a meaningful variant, and that protection be reasonably long lasting such that we retain conditions where Covid can’t thrive. Otherwise, this threshold is super low. Still feels like it’s a plausible outcome, especially since a lot of people are going to stop testing and a lot of reinfections aren’t going to get noticed, but yeah, presumably this is quite the stretch.
23. Fewer than 50K daily average COVID cases worldwide in December 2022: 1%
Hold. Yeah, not gonna happen.
24. >66% US population fully vaccinated (by current standards) against COVID: 70%
Buy to 75%. Currently we’re at 64%, and they’re applying for children as young as a few months, and occasionally someone will indeed change their minds, and some people will do this when the Omicron boosters are available, presumably. But also things are about to die down so it’s plausible that basically no one bothers from here, and I’m far from confident that the new application for 1-year-olds is going to get approved given the data supporting it is not great. I’m still buying because of the young-kids-get-us-over-the-line scenario, but I’m not excited.
25. India's official case count is higher than US: 5%
Current or cumulative? I assume it is cumulative given it is so low. If it’s current I’d buy this quite a lot, they have a bigger population and our situation is going to fall down quite far. If it’s cumulative, their testing systems are not great and if there was going to be a giant Omicron crisis it’s weird that it hasn’t happened yet, not that I understand why it didn’t happen.
But let’s not get cocky here. They’re currently at 41 million versus our 74 million. It’s very easy to see us leveling off not that much higher than here, and it’s not that hard to imagine India getting 50 million infections in 2022 if Omicron ends up slowly rising at some point. Or if there’s an extreme enough other variant. It’s going down now in India, which yeah is super weird and implies some very strange things including a severe testing deficit, but 5% is not very much. Buy to 10%.
26. Medical establishment reverses course and officially says any of Vitamin D, HCQ, or ivermectin is actually effective against COVID: 1%
It’s a dangerous game to put a bunch of 1% predictions down. I don’t even know what ‘officially says’ means, but Vitamin D is effective, and it’s not like it would be that strange or punishing for them to quietly admit it, but I very much don’t expect it. I’ll happily double this to 2%.
27: FDA approves a COVID indication for fluvoxamine: 60%
Sell to 50%, not going further because I don’t know how to interpret the details of how this application would work and also mostly don’t much care at this point. My expectation is that doing this would be spending weirdness points in order to do something helpful, and once Covid is clearly under control there isn’t going to be much appetite for that.
28. Some new variant not currently known is greater than 25% of cases: 60%
Hold. So far we’ve had Alpha, Delta and Omicron within two years, so 60% seems reasonable.
29. Most people I see in the local grocery store 12/31/22 are wearing masks: 60%
Sell to 40%. I realize people in San Francisco are likely to make this kind of mistake, but it will be entirely unnecessary and be after a long summer where I expect basically no issues, and I don’t think it’s that likely such things survive that long. If there’s some sort of permanent cultural degeneration in San Francisco, well, I can’t be too dismissive of such a hypothesis.
30. Masks still required on domestic flights: 60%
Sell to 35%, as previously discussed in my column. Interesting that Scott has these two in the same place.
31. CDC recommends that triple-vaxxed people get at least one more vax: 70%
If this is triple-vaxxed without an Omicron booster, I think 70% is about right. If this is all triple-vaxxed even if you had an Omicron booster I’d sell to something like 50%.
32. China has fewer than 100,000 COVID cases this year (official estimate): 30%
My question was about 50,000 cases per day and yet it’s not clear there’s that much difference. Either this is contained and China claims it had almost zero cases, or it’s not contained and China still manages to say almost zero cases (which I find unlikely, but others think is more likely than I do), or it’s not contained and they can’t deny it anymore. I had them at 40% to stay contained, and this has them 30% for much, much stronger containment, and those actually aren’t that far off. I’m going to hold.
33. [redacted]: 80%
34. No new (non-baby) residents at our housing cluster: 80%
35. No current residents leave our housing cluster: 80%
36. [friend] stays in Indiana: 90%
37. [friend] is in a primary relationship: 30%
38. [friend] is in a primary relationship: 30%
39. [friend] is in a primary relationship: 20%
40. [friend] is dating [friend]: 60%
41. [friend] has [job]: 30%
42. [friend] has published at least one issue of their EA journal: 95%
43. [friend]still works at [job]: 30%
44. [friend] is pregnant (or has given birth): 80%
45. [friend] is pregnant (or has given birth): 70%
46. [friend] is pregnant (or has given birth): 40%
47. [friend] is still working at [job]: 80%
48. [friend] gets engaged: 40%
49. [friend] takes on additional medical work beyond his job for the Board: 50%
50. I have a child: 20%
51. I still live in my current house: 95%
52. I’ve broken up with someone I’m seriously dating: 5%
53. At least three dates with a new person: 30%
54. I have started physical construction of an ADU: 40%
55. ...or bought a tiny house instead of an ADU: 20%
56. I'm playing in a D&D campaign: 20%
57. I go on at least one international trip: 60%
58. I continue my current exercise routine, w at least one cycle in Q4 2022: 60%
59. I weigh less than 185 lbs for most of Q4 2022: 50%
60. I take some substance I haven't discovered yet at least 5 times in 2022 (testing exempted): 30%
61. [redacted]: 20%
62. The Twitter account I check most frequently isn't one of the five I check frequently now: 20%
63. I make/retweet at least 25 tweets between now and 2022: 40%
64. I have written at least 5 chapters of a new novel: 40%
65. [redacted]: 30%
66. [redacted]: 50%
67. [redacted]: 70%
68. [redacted]: 20%
69. Lorien has 150+ patients: 40%
70. 200+ patients: 10%
71. I write at least five more Lorien pages: 40%
72. [redacted]: 70%
73. [redacted]: 80%
74. I have switched medical records systems: 10%
75. I have changed my pricing scheme: 20%
76. I make a time-off coverage agreement with someone: ??
77. ACX is making more than $400K: 80%
78. ...more than $500K: 50%
79. ...more than $600K: 30%
80. At least one post gets more than 300 likes: 80%
81. I run another Book Review Contest: 90%
82. I go to at least 6 meetups in 6 different cities: 60%
83. I run a survey or am extremely prepared to run one in January: 80%
84. I finally finish posting the analysis of the remaining birth order results: 60%
85. I run another ACX Grants round with at least $100,000 moved: 70%
86. I add at least two more dictators to the Book Club: 80%
87. I’m still the top-ranked blog in Substack’s “Science” category: 70%
I’m not going to do every personal prediction on its own, but will do some ‘quick takes.’
People forget how many ways trying to have a child can go wrong, so I sadly am going to say these are all overconfident, sell #44, #45, #46 and #50 each down about 5%.
Friend from #42 has either not contacted me, or (more likely) was explicitly given my contact info, said they’d talk to me, then didn’t. Hard for me to give the person 95% odds of getting the first issue out unless it’s practically done, that’s a lot, so sell to 90%.
Dating isn’t that stable, and Scott is considering dating new people, so assuming Scott is indeed seriously dating at least one non-wife person at this time, I’ll buy #52 to 10%. If it’s only his wife, hold because it’s his prediction.
Sell #62 to 15%, this feels copied from last year and we should update on the year.
Buy #78 to 55% and #79 to 35%, I expect more variance here.
Buy #85 to 80%, the grants were very good, I’d be surprised if there wasn’t enthusiasm for another round.
Next up, prediction markets, and we resume our doing-it-all sequence.
88. No new real-money prediction market becomes bigger than Polymarket: 70%
Buy to 75%, I expect Polymarket to be relatively big in the coming year, and doubt anything is coming to challenge them.
89. Manifold Markets is still alive and active: 30%
Hold. I don’t know these guys well. I do know I keep meaning to try it out, but I keep being busy and not doing so.
90. New legal US real-money prediction market at least half as big as Kalshi: 5%
Sell this down to 3%. Feels like there’s a lot of lead time for something like this and we would have heard about it, so given he’s this low and I haven’t heard, should be even lower.
91. New illegal but easy-to-use market satisfying the above: 20%
Sell to 15%. Again I don’t expect giant new things to come out of nowhere at this point.
92. I post my scores on these predictions before 2/1/23: 80%
This is one of those self-modifying predictions, but I’ll still sell to 75%. I think Scott would actually be tickled a bit by missing this by exactly a day.
Now the Vox predictions
1. Democrats will lose their majorities in the House and Senate (95%): SELL TO 90%
Agree with Scott and sell to 90%. Indeed do many things come to pass, keeping one of the majorities doesn’t seem that impossible. There’s a lot that can happen in a year.
2. Inflation in the US will average under three percent (80%): HOLD
Sell to 60%, I refuse to believe we can be 80% to be under 3% a year after seeing 7%, especially with house prices going nuts and that often lagging by several months. Why this supreme confidence in the Fed?
3. Unemployment in the US will fall below four percent by November (80%): SELL to 60% if they mean in November, otherwise hold
I mean, it’s under 4% now, so didn’t this already happen? I notice I’m confused and going to ignore the question. If it’s ‘will be below 4% on election day’ which is what I assume this is, I notice I only said 70% for below 5%, so for below 4% I’d need to be at something like 50%, and also isn’t Scott pretty heavily contradicting himself here? But mostly I think seeing this makes me more willing to buy the below 5% number rather than wanting to sell this one, so I’ll stop at 60%.
4. Supreme Court will overturn Roe v. Wade (65%): SELL to 60%
I’m going to sell this to 55%. There are four votes that are clearly not going to do this, so it only takes one more to uphold, and the practical implications of doing so seem rather not great for the court, which Roberts will lean on hard. I think there’s a very good chance he convinces Kavanaugh or Gorsuch, although the other three seem harder, including by finding a way to continue dodging the question. But with this many similar predictions not going to go out on a limb, it’s not my area.
5. Stephen Breyer will retire from the Supreme Court (55%): N/A
Yeah, going to go with 95% here, whoops. I do think 55% was crazy low, but that’s cheap talk at this point.
6. Emmanuel Macron will be reelected president of France (65%): HOLD
Sell to 55%. I think the Covid referendums are not going to go the way the pro-restriction people like to think as often as they would like.
7. Jair Bolsonaro will be reelected president of Brazil (55%): SELL to 50%
Buy to 60%, because I think this is the opposite of the Macron case.
8. Bongbong Marcos will be elected president of the Philippines (55%): BUY to 60%
I will split the difference and go 57% because I know nothing.
9. Rebels will not capture Addis Ababa (55%): N/A
The fact that we’re already writing another N/A at 55% is pretty interesting, huh.
10. China will not reopen its borders in the first half of 2022 (80%): BUY to 90%
China reopens its borders if it fails to contain Omicron and has to admit it. If not, they almost certainly stay closed. So what’s the chance the failure comes in the next five months? The 80% number seems reasonable to me.
11. Chinese GDP will continue to grow for the first 3/4 of the year (95%): SELL to 90%
Agree with the sale to 90%, because of the whole real estate fiasco situation combined with Covid potentially going haywire, which could cause a bunch of real actual lockdowns or just general mass disruption.
12. 20% of US kids between 0.5 and 5 years old will get at least one COVID vaccine by year's end (65%): HOLD
Sell to 60%. I do think 20% is low enough that crazy parents will do it even if it makes no sense and this comes down to approval, but I’m not convinced on approval.
13. WHO will designate another Variant Of Concern by year's end (75%): HOLD
Sell to 70%. Feels high to me, I dunno.
14. 12 billion COVID shots will be given out globally by 11/2022 (80%): HOLD
With only five minutes doesn’t feel like I’ll have enough math to do better, so hold.
15. At least one country will have less than 10% of people vaccinated with two shots by 11/2022 (70%): BUY to 95%
I am only buying to 85% because indeed do many things come to pass but I’m reading Scott’s buy as him having a target in mind and I mostly believe him.
16. A psychedelic drug will be decriminalized/legalized in at least one more US state (75%): HOLD
Hold because I haven’t thought about it, but does seem high.
17. AI will discover a new drug promising enough for clinical trials (85%): HOLD
Very much depends on definition of AI and promising enough, and haven’t thought about it, so hold.
18. US govt will not renew the ban on funding gain-of-function research (60%): HOLD
Buy to 75%, we’re really stupid. I mean really, really stupid and terrible at this.
19. The Biden administration will set the social cost of carbon at $100/ton or more (70%): HOLD
Buy to 80% without bothering to check whether that number means anything (in spirit of the exercise). The Biden administration’s entire modus operandi is to set this number to the highest possible value, so if it’s plausible that it will be higher than this, it’s going to be higher. Remember, Biden wants to keep his people happy and staffers mostly run the show.
20. 2022 will be warmer than 2021 (80%): HOLD
This is a pure math distribution question. I quickly looked, 2021 was a down year, so it does seem like a strong favorite. Hold.
21. Kenneth Branagh's Belfast will win Best Picture (55%): SELL to 30%
Sell to 35%. Of the expected nominees the only one I’ve seen is Dune and it won’t win. It’s a big field of movies, there’s a lot of ways to be a lot more smug and self-congratulatory than a white-male-story set in old Belfast, so being this confident in this win feels dumb. Uninformed sale.
22. Norway will win the most medals at the 2022 Winter Olympics (60%): HOLD
Hold, I have no idea, sure, why not, presumably this prediction was made because of reasons.
1. Democrats lose both houses of Congress (90%) HOLD - as above, hold here.
2. Democrats lose at least two Senate seats (80%) HOLD
3. Democrats lose fewer than six Senate seats (80%) HOLD
Going to do what Scott’s doing and go ‘all right looks reasonable, you think about this a lot.’ If I agree on 90% for the top line, I don’t see why I should have much disagreement here.
4. Nancy Pelosi announces retirement plans (70%) HOLD
This feels like the type of thing everyone keeps expecting and then only happens once at most. She might die in office. Sell to 60%.
5. Stephen Breyer does not retire (60%) N/A
Worth noting that he was this high here.
6. Some version of Build Back Better passes (60%) HOLD
Wait, what? I don’t think it’s fair to predict on this at this point, but surely this is a lot less likely now. Sell to at least 40%.
7. Joe Biden is still president (90%) HOLD
Buy to 95%, he is not giving up unless he physically can’t function.
8. At least one Biden cabinet-rank official resigns (70%) HOLD
Buy to 75%. There’s a lot of them and I’m finding it hard to turn down the union here.
9. No military conflict between the PRC and Taiwan (a worryingly low 90%) HOLD
Buying to 95% and not worrying as much. This is a lower threshold than Scott’s.
10. New U.S. sanctions on Russia (70%) HOLD
Feels like the kind of thing that would happen but also implies a breakdown of some kind. Going to sell to 60%.
11. Saudi Arabia and Israel establish diplomatic relations (60%) SELL to 50%
Yeah, another of those ‘gonna happen Real Soon Now yes sir’ situations, happy to go with Scott here and sell down on principle.
12. Fewer U.S. Covid deaths in 2022 than in 2021 (80%) BUY to 90%
Buy to 95%.
13. Emmanuel Macron re-elected (60%) HOLD
Still selling to 50%.
14. Traffic light coalition exploits loopholes to get around the constitutional debt brake (70%) HOLD
This feels like one of those oddly specific scenarios that people who think about them overrate, versus all the other ways things could go, so going to sell to 60%.
15. No recession in 2021 (90%) SELL to 80%
Buy to 95%, Scott is rocking the crazy pills on this one, there’s no way that happened.
16. Liz Cheney loses primary (80%) HOLD
Yeah, I guess, probably. Want to sell but probably should hold.
17. Some version of USICA passes Congress (70%) HOLD
You’re saying the congress is 70% to pass a bill (HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA) uh yeah sell to 55%.
18. Lula elected president of Brazil (60%) SELL to 50%
Sell to 40% because it’s the other side of the coin. I still laugh about it every time when I think about the fact that he’s this close.
19. China officially abandons Covid Zero (70%) HOLD
Sell to 60%. I notice that if you think China is 30% to have less than 100k cases and 70% to abandon Covid zero than that is an opinion.
20. Fewer U.S. Covid-19 deaths in 2022 than in 2020 (80%) BUY to 90%
Buy to 95%.
21. Additional booster shots of mRNA vaccines authorized for seniors (80%) HOLD
Buy to 85%. I do think maybe by that time things are winding down enough they don’t do it, but would be very surprising to me to actually refuse to do this.
22. November 2022 year-on-year CPI growth is below 6% (70%) BUY to 80%
Wait, didn’t we give 90% for this to be below 5%? Why the sudden only buying to 80% for 6%? Is this an adjustment for Matt’s opinion. In any case, sure, I can buy this to 75%, but also we’re doing this ‘no going back’ thing so occasionally we miss an arbitrage, it happens.
23. November 2022 year-on-year CPI growth is above 4% (70%) SELL to 50%
Sell to 40%. Yeah, the TIPS spreads are kind of crazy but there is a limit, it’s not like I can’t hedge.
24. The Fed ends up doing more than its currently forecast three interest rate hikes (60%) HOLD
Buy to 70%. It’s a dumb forecast.
25. Russia does not invade Ukraine (60%) HOLD
Buy to 70% as above.
26. Viktor Orbán loses power in Hungary (60%) HOLD
Sell to 50%. Chances of such folks losing power are usually overstated. I remember one high school history teacher whose yearly predictions included Castro out of power, just like he predicted every year. These falls are not that predictable.
27. Sinn Fein becomes the largest party in the Northern Ireland assembly (60%) HOLD
Hold. No idea and not feeling like trying to do the research, sure, why not.
28. The U.S. and Canada reach an agreement on softwood lumber (70%) HOLD
Buy to 75% because it seems like everyone involved could use a win and why shouldn’t they figure something out, probably underestimated a bit.
29. Democrats go down at least one governor on net (60%) HOLD
I think Matt is underestimating how pissed off people are about Covid restrictions, so buying this to 70%.
30. The unemployment rate stays between 4 and 5% (70%) SELL to 60% if you mean 12/22, to 40% if you mean it never gets outside that range at all
Whew. That was an interesting variation of the exercise. I like that they’re not intended to be fully reflected-upon predictions, since that would mean a very large time commitment, and many of these questions don’t deserve that.
Looking at the comments, Scott confirms he’s going to grade the Bored Apes question based on his (incorrect) price baseline, so I’ll basically consider that question void for grading. The logic is the interesting part, as always.
"28. Some new variant not currently known is greater than 25% of cases: 60%
Hold. So far we’ve had Alpha, Delta and Omicron within two years, so 60% seems reasonable."
"13. WHO will designate another Variant Of Concern by year's end (75%): HOLD
Sell to 70%. Feels high to me, I dunno."
Here is my case for these being more likely.
Mutations are a function of number of replications, and the graphs going vertical everywhere with Omicron mean there is a lot more COVID replicating out there* than there ever was with earlier strains. Pretty soon there is going to be a huge selection advantage to escape immunity gained by Omicron, and since apparently Omicron infection gives Delta immunity it won't just be Delta coming back.
Is there anything wrong with how I'm thinking about this?
I think we'll still be doing enough sequencing somewhere to catch something that shows up in 25% of cases, even as most people stop testing, and infections get much more mild.
Buy 28 to 70%.
I have a gut feeling WHO will want to keep talking about COVID to counter people probably being very over it and going back to life as usual, but less confident.
Still I'd buy back up to VOX's 75%.
*Including in my body currently. Yay!
Remember that I force myself into bins of 50/60/70/80/90/95/99 (or the inverse of these) in order to make grading easier, so when you (for example) sell from 5% to 3% you're not necessarily disagreeing with me. I don't know if there's a better way to handle this; maybe next year I'll break this custom even though it would make it harder to compare to past cycles.