Analysts! What do they know?

Analysts -- or, as near as I can tell from this story, an analyst, despite the headline -- worried that Apple wasn't discounting its prices enough because of the terrible recession. Then Black Friday rolled around and ... turns out the day went just fine, according to analysts! According to at least one of the same analysts, in fact (Kaufman Brothers' Shawn Wu).

So here's my honest-to-god questions: how does one get a job as an analyst? What are the consequences for analysis that turns out not to be true? What incentives do analysts have to produce accurate predictions -- and what incentives do their employers have for hiring or retaining analysts who can produce accurate predictions? I'd love to know.

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