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Roger Ward Babson

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Roger Ward Babson

Born : 6 July 1875
City : Gloucester, Massachusetts, United States
Rank : ( 190 )
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Roger Ward Babson Biography

Babson, Roger Ward, 1875–1967, American businessman and statistician, b. Gloucester, Mass. In 1904 he founded the Babson Statistical Organization, Inc., whose business and financial statistics, published in Babson's Washington Service, are widely sold in the United States, Great Britain, and Canada. In 1919 he established Babson Institute (now Babson College), in Massachusetts, and in 1927 he founded Webber College, in Florida. He was the Prohibition party's 1940 presidential candidate, polling 57,812 votes. He was the author of many books on finance and investment, among the best known of which are Business Barometers (1909, 10th ed. 1961), Investment Fundamentals (1930, 4th ed. 1948), and If Inflation Comes(1937).

Work on financial theory

Babson's success as an investor was based on unorthodox views of the operation of markets. According to biographer John Mulkern, Babson attributed the business cycle: to Sir Isaac Newton's law of action and reaction.... His pseudoscientific notion, that the gravity can be used to explain movement in the stock markets. His market forecasting techniques are in articles in Traders World Magazine and the Gravity Research Foundation he founded.

While attending MIT he received a degree in Engineering. He lobbied the dean to include a business course, which resulted in a course known as "Business Engineering". This was the start of Business being taught at an American University. Eventually the Business Engineering program was expanded and it is now seen as the fore runner of the MBA degree.

Role in development of Andrews Pitchfork

He learned to draw a nominal line through zigzagging market action on charts from George F. Swain, a Professor of Engineering when he work with him and later teach this technique to Allan H. Andrews who further refine it into "Andrews Pitchfork" a now commonly used trendline indicator.

Political career

Babson was the Prohibition Party's candidate for President of the United States in 1940. Election was won by incumbent President Franklin Delano Roosevelt of the Democratic Party. Babson was surpassed by two other unsuccessful candidates:

Wendell Lewis Willkie of the Republican Party.
Norman Mattoon Thomas of the Socialist Party of America.

Role in development of the parking meter

In the late 1920s, Babson filed several patents for a parking meter.The meters were suggested to operate on power from the battery of the parking vehicle and required a connection from the vehicle to the meter. In 1932, Carl Magee began to work on the parking meter and since his parking meter was the first to be installed for actual use on July 1935 in Oklahoma city, Magee is known as the inventor of the parking meter.
Establishment of the Gravity Research Foundation

Babson founded the Gravity Research Foundation in 1948,The Foundation established a research facility in the town of New Boston, New Hampshire after Babson determined that this location was far enough away from the city of Boston, Massachusetts to survive a nuclear attack.

The "Babson Boulders" of Dogtown, Mass.

Babson was interested in the history of an abandoned settlement in Gloucester known as Dogtown. To provide charitable assistance to unemployed stonecutters in Gloucester during the Great Depression, Babson commissioned them to carve inspirational inscriptions on approximately two dozen boulders in the area surrounding Dogtown Common. The Babson Boulder Trail exists today as a well-known hiking and mountain-biking trail. The inscriptions are clearly visible. The boulders are scattered, not all are on the trail, and not all of the inscriptions face it, making finding them something of a challenge. Samples of some of the two dozen inscriptions include: "HELP MOTHER", "SPIRITUAL POWER", "GET A JOB", "KEEP OUT OF DEBT", and "LOYALTY"

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