NADA Key Takeaways – Steve Forbes Keynotes

By: Tim Hickle


steve forbes NADA Convention

One of the things I was most excited about for the NADA Convention this year was Steve Forbes’ Saturday keynote. The name sounds familiar, I’m sure. As the Chairman of Forbes Media, this is a man who built one of the most well respected news outlets in the world. His keynote was informative, entertaining, and unapologetic. Here are my biggest takeaways:

Forbes Loves Free Enterprise

Not surprisingly, Forbes is a very big fan of free enterprises and believes that the problems that the auto and health care industries are facing could be freed up by opening enterprises up.  The crowd delighted in his opinions on Congress’ proposed regulations on auto lending, tax reform, and Washington regulations.

“People want the cars they want, not the cars that Washington thinks they should want. What it all boils down to is that the new normal is the new abnormal.”

Forbes Loves Monetary Policy

I know this seems obvious. He runs a news outlet that mainly covers financial news; he obviously likes monetary policy. This is no average affinity, however, Forbes is nuts over monetary policy.

He acknowledges that he is mostly alone in this love, calling it “The most boring subject in the world.”

“If you’re ever in an airplane in coach and you want some elbow room between you and your seat mates, start talking about monetary policy,” he continued.

The crowd began laughing and tweeting as Forbes told them “If you’re ever on a bad date, start talking about monetary policy. I promise you will never see that person again.”

Forbes Loves Metaphors

Well, maybe he does, maybe he doesn’t, but I loved a metaphor he used, and that’s all that matters.

During his keynote, he was talking about his favorite subject (see above) and he used a perfect metaphor for the NADA crowd. In talking about monetary policy, he said “If you think of monetary policy as an automobile or a truck, you can have a magnificent vehicle, but if you don’t have sufficient fuel you’ll stall the thing. Too much fuel, you’ll flood the engine, right amount and you have a chance to move ahead.”

I really enjoyed his keynote, learned plenty, and am looking forward to discussing it further. If you missed out and would like more coverage on NADA 2014, make sure to sign up for our total recap!