Star business

MicrosoftBill Gates, having been born in late October, is part of the astrological sign of Scorpio. According to a new book, Zodiac Manager, this is the most powerful sign in the universe, and Scorpios are intuitive, active, imaginative and compassionate, but also stubborn, jealous and aggressive, with “mind control abilities.” These are things you might need to know if you want to do business with Gates or Microsoft.

Along the same lines, Warren Buffet, regarded by many as one of the best investors in history, is a Virgo. Zodiac Manager cites Virgos as being modest, practical, straightforward and precise, but also nervous, tense, fussy and demanding. All of these qualities may have shaped his investment decisions.

Who bases their investments or other business decisions around books like Zodiac Manager or other astrological information? Many. In a recent Internet search, I was able to find more than 20,000 sites with information relating heavenly cycles to business or stock decisions. One of the more well known sites, www.afund.com, run by financial astrologer Henry Weingarten, has thousands of subscribers who pay up to $7,500 a year to get advice and predictions on the way of the markets or specific stocks. And he has a strong track record: He accurately predicted the U.S. stock market crash in 1987, the downturn of Japanese stocks in 1989, the beginning of the Gulf War in 1990 and the financial crises in Mexico in the mid-1990s, as well as the difficult start of the Euro in early 1999.

Financial astrologers use a number of different techniques to analyze business through the stars. Companies’ incorporation dates are regarded as their birth dates, which correspond to an astrological sign; astrologers also use the signs of company officials, as well as the history and performance of a company and its stock.

Using astrology to guide business decisions is nothing new, however. It was used in ancient India to know when to buy and sell grains and precious metals in markets. Aristotle also told of Thales of Miletus, a man who rented olive presses and used the stars to predict bumper olive crops. It has been said that Walt Disney consulted astrology when deciding the times to launch various entertainment projects. There have also been reports that every day on his way to work, industrialist J.P. Morgan consulted astrologer Evangeline Adams on his business and investment decisions. In fact, when asked by someone if millionaires seek advice from the stars, Morgan said, “Millionaires don’t use astrology; billionaires do!”

There are, of course, a number of other methods to predict the outcome of business decisions. When looking to purchase stock, investors may use earnings reports, P/E ratios, price data, mathematical charts or a number of other traditional methods. These, however, are thought to only be accurate 60 percent of the time, on average. But by looking at the history of the stock, some astrologers can often create a projected price chart of a stock for many months or even years. Many astrological financial consultants believe that every movement on the market is a result of astro­logical influences, because every person working with the market is acting as a result of his or her own astrological stimulus.

Many leaders of companies that I have spoken to use forecasts in their business: to order supplies, ramp up capacity, or set the amount of inventory. I have yet to find, however, that any of them has based these forecasts on how the House of Jupiter is affecting the company. Although few readily admit to using such information, should it easily be discounted? Markets and business trends are rarely certain, so it might not hurt to look into some of these non-traditional sources of information. Is financial astrology going to go mainstream in the near future? The answer may be written in the stars.

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