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Acronyms: Swag bagged

If there is one thing the financial markets love, it is an acronym. The boom years before 2007 spawned a dizzying tsunami of them – largely in the structured credit market where the shortcomings of the CDO squared or the CPDO became all too apparent.

The financial crisis has blown the opportunity for abbreviation wide open, given the persistent problems across all asset classes. And where Goldman Sachs’s Jim O’Neill famously coined the term Bric to denote the opportunity that existed in those four countries, the geographically based acronym du jour was quickly superseded by the eurozone’s Piigs – countries to be avoided rather than embraced.

However, in 2012, the time for mincing words is over. Investors have been burned pretty much everywhere in financial products, so a new acronym has been created to define the only safe investments that are left: silver, wine, art or gold. Otherwise known as Swag.

This should help no end in the restoration of the financial markets’ long-lost reputation for professionalism.

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