Betting on the future: The construction of stock market forecasts among financial analysts
Forecasting the development of stock prices is a central activity in contemporary finance. The production of future scenarios on how stock prices might develop enables financial market participants to bet on the rise or fall of stock prices. In theory as well as in practice, however, there is large skepticism whether it is possible to predict the future of stock market developments at all. Drawing on 24 months of fieldwork in a financial analysis department of a Swiss bank, I will elaborate on how financial analysts cope with the tension between the uncertainty they face and their task to predict the future. Based on ethnographic data, I will show that financial analysts combine a large variety of calculative and sociotechnical approaches in order to overcome this tension. Based on processes that aim to decode information
and processes that aim to sophisticate their forecasts, financial analysts create expert knowledge, which is later on used to claim market authority.
Raum: AND 2.02