Institutional Investor has an excellent piece on Nouriel Roubini, an economist famous for predicting the financial crisis and subsequent recession in 2008:
Led by Roubini’s head of global research, Christian Menegatti, who was recruited from the faculty of NYU’s economics department, RGE’s analysts spend their days studying the correlations and interconnections among macroeconomic variables, economies, financial markets, asset classes and public policies. The team not only offers daily insight into major global trends and economic vulnerabilities, it also covers more than 80 separate economies.
For RGE’s senior analysts, getting it right requires gaining a deep understanding of Roubini’s distinctive approach to macroeconomic research. Instead of concentrating primarily on economic flow variables (such as income per capita, budget deficits, investment expenditure and consumption), whose values depend on measurement over a period of time, Roubini advocates the use of “balance-sheet analysis” when researching individual economies and encourages his team to integrate the study of stock variables, which are measured at specific points in time (such as wealth, debt, capital stock and the money supply). By using a balance-sheet approach to assessing the assets and liabilities of governments, financials, corporates and households, the team collectively develops a sweeping, top-down, macroeconomic view that informs its every move. That style of analysis, which Roubini developed while researching the causes of the Asian financial crisis, is an integral part of RGE’s intellectual DNA.
Since RGE’s founding its readership has evolved along with its analytical approach. In 2005, when the firm’s first subscription-based product, RGE Monitor, went live, a smattering of dedicated website readers began to migrate to the new business. By the end of 2006, RGE had about 300 clients, largely university professors, government policymakers and central bank research staff. Subscriptions cost between $1,000 and $10,000, RGE’s CEO, Dean Daniels. Now, in the wake of the financial crisis, the firm has about 1,000 clients, most of whom are directly involved in investment management. Fees have risen as RGE’s services have multiplied, and clients now pay between $7,500 (for a single user) and $100,000 (for 50 users or more) for access to RGE’s website, reports, forecasts, newsletters and conference calls; those at the high end of the fee scale can consult directly with the firm’s economists and analysts.