A Metz Win
By Penelope Wang; Michael Metz

(MONEY Magazine) – In the '90s, Michael Metz, chief investment strategist at Oppenheimer, was both famed and scorned for his bearish views, which led to his retirement last year. But in a scenario that must fuel many a sidelined Wall Streeter's fantasies, Oppy has rehired Metz, now 75. Concerned that his return signals another bear market--eventually, anyway--we checked in.

Q. Why did they bring you back?

A. With a recent management change, the firm has returned to its original value orientation; it's less momentum-obsessed. I couldn't resist the temptation to come back. This is an enormously exciting environment--for traders, not for savers.

Q. You think we're heading for another market meltdown?

A. The market's not in a bubble, but it is extremely richly priced. By lowering rates, the Fed has rewarded speculators and penalized savers. Now the refinancing boom is over, deficits are looming, and global growth is not positive. Valuations will be headed lower next year.

Q. What do you recommend for risk-averse investors?

A. Cash is attractive. So are some commodity plays, like forest products. And it's the chance of a decade to buy beaten-down pharmaceuticals.

Q. Feel good to be vindicated?

A. Not at all. So many savers had their lives turned upside down. I'd much rather have been wrong. I very much hope I'm wrong now. --PENELOPE WANG