Denmark’s Saxo Bank is famous for its annual list of Black Swan predictions—predictions of unlikely events that would cause utter turmoil in the market. No, this year’s Black Swan prediction isn’t that the ballet film Black Swan becomes a runaway hit among the male 15-30 demographic. That’s just silly. Rather, they suggest that one of the most unlikely but potentially tumultuous events of 2011 could be the acquisition of Facebook by Apple.
According to Wikipedia, the “Theory of Black Swan Events” was developed by Lebanese economist Nassim Nicholas Taleb to explain, “The disproportionate role of high-impact, hard to predict, and rare events that are beyond the realm of normal expectations in history, science, finance, and technology.” Getting Zuck to hand over the keys to cyberworld domination is certainly high impact, hard to predict, and rare.
There is also a certain logic to it. Apple has long wanted a decent toehold in social networking, and control of Facebook would provide the space for ten toes, a heel, and a couple of thighs. Apple also has the money to do it, unlike most other companies out there, and it would give Steve Jobs much more leverage against his arch rivals at the Googleplex.
But before you run out to buy Apple shares, note that by definition, a Black Swan Event means that it is unlikely to happen. Saxo Bank is not Nostradamus, and it is very clear about that—although, it does say on its website that 40 percent of its unlikely predictions actually do happen. Perhaps this is best left among the 60 percent that don’t.
Read More at the Business Journal.