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David Stafford
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Student of markets, enjoys following their course.
My book:
Around the World in Several Pieces
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  • A Bright Time For Solar Power.

    Though stocks may have their cloudy days as of recently, here and there, it seems as though there is some hope burning brightly still, in regards to the future of "renewable energy", more specifically in regards to solar power.

    ___

    One recent Solar power discovery per se, regards improvements to the efficiency of the conversion process per se, whereby solar energy is converted into a form harnessable/capturable by us as people, so that it may be added to our greater electrical grid, if one will. For, it seems Australian researchers from a sort of state research group, have improved the rate of solar power capture up to about 40%, up from 20% in the 1980s at least according to this article. New prototype facilities for this sort of tech, are supposedly going to be developed by "Raygen Resources" however on their website, I did not see reference to stock information per se, so that may be some sort of quasi-governmental entity or a privately held company, who can say(company website). Presumably the company is mostly staffed by Cajuns, who have harnessed their "ragin" energy, into a quest for improving the world's understanding of solar power(a joke, yes, a very lame joke).

    (image source)

    -actual logo(source)

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    In other solar news, it seems that we are getting closer and closer to a sort of natural mimicry of solar capture surface adaptability per se, by now soon being able to apply "spray on" solar energy capture cells wherever one might wish to spray them(source). Perhaps one day in the none to distant future, we may be able to coat many different surfaces with sort of flexible solar cells, which perhaps with increased capture efficiency, might make anything a sort of ad-hoc solar panel if one will. Now perhaps all those times, that one has dreamt that the proverbial family dog could be more helpful around the house, may soon be moving closer to manifestation per se(humor). For though there are already sort of rough "solar panel sweaters" for dogs, perhaps soon one may be able to wirelessly tether per se, good old Argos's garb to the greater electrical grid, turning man's best friend, into the climate's best friend if one will. Surely the other applications for this sort of technology are also somewhat endless per se, giving the solar power capture facilities of the future a sort of Midas-ian translatability per se.

    solar panel dog sweater (image source)

    ______

    Perhaps one day this will also lead to sort of cool new cars that will recharge themselves(hopefully as quickly as possible) while parked,or just in the sunlight in general. With cool new "hybrid" cars becoming more prevalent by the year, perhaps this would make for a really cool sports car per se(even though that might be a stretch). For other discussions of semi-hybrid/electric sports cars, here's a few cool one's that might catch one's eye per se;

    Most recent;

    BMW I8(image source);

    and an "older" sort of pseudo-prototype Porsche hybrid;

    the "918 Spyder Hybrid"(image source);

    (click to enlarge)

    and of course, ye olde Tesla roadster;(image source)

    (click to enlarge)

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    Hopefully one's portfolio's utility is just as, if not even more useful than a spray on solar panel, and as efficient as these modern solar prototypes being developed in Australia. Thanks again for reading, and happy holiday season.

    ___

    To continue the semi-developing tradition of including some poetic interludes in the blog posts here's a perhaps apropos bit of prose on the harnessing of stars;

    From the book of Job;

    "Can you bind the sweet influences of the Pleiades, or loose the bands of Orion"

    (link)

    _________

    The Pleiades(link);

    (click to enlarge)

    Tags: Solar, Renewable
    Dec 12 3:19 AM | Link | Comment!
  • The Political Tight Rope Of Post-Ukraine Crisis Eastern Europe.

    Though perhaps Ukraine isn't in the headlines as much as it once was, it seems that the sort of center of interest if one will, may have moved from Kiev to Moscow per se. More specifically perhaps to the ruling elites of Russia, and the pressure being put on the status quo by a seeming perfect storm of factors.

    ___

    Though the ruling elites of Russia may be "furious in luxury" at the moment(Kipling's "France"(link)), it does seem as though their leaders per se, are really being put to the political test as of late. With the very dynamic, and unwritten-rule based political system of Russia, all of these economic pressures, are perhaps forcing the top of the human totem pole if one will, to perform some tricky political acrobatics. While on the one hand we have the Russian economy being hit from several angles, by both micro-economic short-comings caused by sanctions, and by more macro-factors, such as the falling price of oil(with the future Russian budget(signed just recently) being based off of $100 per barrel oil forecasts(source)) we have the Russian elites seemingly try to be Pyrrhic-ally militant to the West on the one hand and being patronizingly-comforting to both wealthy and of average means Russians on the other.

    __

    Though Russia is continuing to increase sanctions against western commercial entities(new meat import sanctions(link)), it seems as though all these various factors aligned against the Russian economy, are continuing to put it into a sort of inflationary economic malaise. While on the one hand the elites may want to sort of maintain their leader's carefully nurtured strong man persona, a persona birthed way back when starting with the apartment complex bombing, and ye olde semi-recent war in Kosovo, on the other hand its being observed that this very sort of "brand" is perhaps starting to really bring some pressure on the Russian economy per se(link).

    __

    Hence, even though such elites as the head of Sberbank realize that this most recent session of economic push-and-pull per se, is leading to serious "liquidity" problems in Russia(link), the Russian ruling cadre is seemingly trying to keep its head above water, by perhaps trying to provide various economic electric-blankets if one will to comfort various demographics within its society per se. To comfort the everyman we have the Russian-semi-cash-strapped government refusing to go after some low hanging fruit, and increase the semi-regulated vodka price(link). To please the "elites" and or merchants per se of all scope and size, the Russian political leaders are also doing something which is somewhat of a policy about-face, by allowing folks to repatriate their capital without any taxes to prevent them from doing so(link).

    __

    Hence it seems that in order to try to ride out this situation, the Russian elites, are as perhaps somewhat suggested earlier, closing ranks. However, as time goes by it seems that those included in the ranks seems to be an increasingly larger and larger portion of the Russian population per se, not only those close to the ruling circle, but increasingly more everyday Russians per se, as-well. Perhaps it would be interesting to see what sort of, "unpublicized" deals are going on behind closer-doors if one will, for surely with the sort of shades-of-grey Russian political system, their must be some sort of interesting compromises going on perhaps, behind closed doors to keep the sort of dynamic political dialogues of Russia functioning semi-smoothly, if that's the case. Perhaps just as Putin was educated in the ways of power and influence, amidst the scarcity of the declining Soviet Union, perhaps behind the scenes in this sort of scarcity ruled era in Russia, the new leaders, and back-room-elites, of that former trading camp on the outskirts of the Mongol empire, are being born.

    ___

    Either way perhaps this is an interesting time for those involved in Russian politics. Just as the social discussion in the US is perhaps becoming more varied(perhaps for very different reasons), perhaps ironically, the people of Russia are also having discussions concerning the nature of control, and power per se, and hence, are though in a different place per se, perhaps closer than we may at times think. Perhaps with a large enough portfolio, all yields return to the sort of market-rate per se, but either way, this certainly must be an "interesting" time to be an elite in that land diamond mines and north-sea-oil.

    ___

    Thanks again for reading, I hope everyone's portfolios are easier to balance per se, than as seems to be the socio-political situation in Russia at the moment, and hope everyone's having a great holiday season.

    ___

    As a side note; it seems that 100 tanks or so are being moved into regions immediately bordering Russia per se, hence potentially perhaps making the situation a little more "interesting" (link).

    ___

    (image source)

    Dec 05 4:31 AM | Link | Comment!
  • Raiffeisen Bank; A Decent Price, And In Turn A Decent Yield.

    Ever since the eastern European chronicles per se, way back when on ye olde instablog, I've been personally intrigued by Raiffeisen bank. Its activities hark back perhaps to forgotten empires, and interesting developing market diversification options.

    ________

    One reason one may find the Viking "empire" if one will to be fascinating is perhaps that it left us no great pyramids, no great monuments to look at, no proclamations from "Ozymandias" so as to say;

    From Shelley's Ozymandias(link);

    "My name is Ozymandias, king of kings,

    look on my works, ye Mighty(sic), and despair!"

    (Image source)

    (click to enlarge)

    ____

    However, what they did leave us was trade routes. Trade routes in to eastern Europe, joining Scandinavia per se to England, and even routes, hence connecting Paris to Russia, to Turkey, all established long, long ago.

    Viking trade routes (source);

    (click to enlarge)

    ___________

    Though it has been gone for close to a century, perhaps they(A-H empire) may too have left us something of a similar vein(of course the majesty of Vienna aswell). For, though there are no eastern European noblemen or Magyar princes per se meeting in Vienna these days, the legacy of this time period can perhaps still be found, peculiarly enough perhaps, in the business of banking in the region. For, just as Austrians and Hungarians once united under one empire, now Austrian banks, often have somewhat major roles to play in the "emerging markets" per se of eastern Europe.(Raiffeisen as "regional winner", or Eastern/Central european bank of the year(a year ago), "winner" in regards to several different countries in the region aswell(link)

    (image source)

    (click to enlarge)

    __________

    Amongst these banks is none other than Raiffeisen bank. Its sold on the international markets per se, in the US, OTC as RAIFY. Raify and its ilk have of course been sort of punished by amongst other things these most recent of events involving the Ukraine, Russia, NATO, etc. For Raify also had some business in Russia as well, so of course it was caught either directly or indirectly in the cross-hairs of the sanction wars per se, just as various energy companies, and the Russian economy in general have been.

    ________

    Through all this hullabaloo per se, and strife, Raify has been reduced in price, and according to whether one uses Google finance, or Bloomberg per se, it now has a yield of about 7-10%. Hence one may capture that sort of interesting semi-emerging market finance beta, with a pretty decent div. yield attached to it. Perhaps somewhat reassuringly aswell, it is quite diversified per se across this whole eastern European region, and perhaps comfortingly(or not depending on one's predictions for the Euro-zone economy) it is also anchored in good old Austria per se, perhaps making it somewhat more stable than it might otherwise be. Hence perhaps its a decent investment. Although if one is ordering it, it may be worthy of note, that as of late, the bid-ask spread is something sort of crazy like 12% so that might affect one's limit order filling per se, if one pursues said route, depending on the target price one uses as reference per se.

    _____

    Perhaps also regardless of Raify in particular, perhaps this whole situation is sort of telling regarding buying/selling the news per se in general. Of course, the moment revolution/popular revolt if one will, and geopolitical conflicts got underway, it might be semi-presumable if one will, to guess that companies like Raify might be caught literally in the middle of any conflict in the region. With this being the case, one might have hence presumed(according to various financial/economic dogma) that this whole turn of events should have been "priced in" per se, from the moment that this whole situation sort of "got messy". Of course, this wasn't the case, and perhaps hence this would have, several months ago, have made Raify a sort of tempting short if one will. Though hindsight is 20/20 per se, perhaps this says something about various "strong" to "weak" market theories per se, especially concerning theories relating to "perfect knowledge" and relatively foreseeable events being "priced in" to an asset/stocks value/price per se. Perhaps though alas a grain of sand doesn't mean a desert, but either way, this is perhaps an interesting example, of things not being "priced in" until they are in the "news" per se several months later, so perhaps this is telling concerning various pricing models/economic theorems none the less.

    People fleeing eastern Ukraine(from June 27, 2014):(source)

    (click to enlarge)

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    Hopefully one's investments are going great regardless of one's theories concerning markets in general. I hope everyone's stocks are fairing a bit better than Raify at the moment, and thank you again for reading.

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    For a look at RAIFY's chart via Bloomberg here's a link;

    www.bloomberg.com/quote/RAIFY:US/chart

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    Here's a greater discussion of the "efficient market hypothesis";

    link

    ____

    Viking burial at sea;(link)

    Tags: RAIFY
    Dec 03 4:02 AM | Link | Comment!
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