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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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  • Introduction To The Caucus Investment Space And A Macro Perspective.

    The Caucuses are seemingly not the easiest markets to penetrate. It would perhaps be cliche to mention some piece of literature like "Heart of Darkness", by Snr. Conrad, however, perhaps it would be more apropos to liken the Caucus investment situation for your average investor to studying the "Yeti".

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    There are presumably no wikipedia articles on the anatomy, favorite foods etc of Yetis. Instead if one wants to do so, one must study for example, native American mythology etc. etc., in so many words, one must assume a different tac per se than usual.

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    Hence, in beginning our Circassian Yeti expedition, it is perhaps best that we start at from a unique approach relative to some of the other approaches previously used or cited in the research that's been done on the blog.

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    Searching for investments in the Caucuses will often turn up IMF or some other sort of non-commercial-bank per se, reference to an expo or something of the like on investing in the region. A green job expo, an elevator expo even, there are all sorts of expos that are held in the region, perhaps like any other. However, something as simple, as "GUR", for the Eastern European which gave us our first "base-camp" into Eastern European economies, is sorely lacking.

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    Hence, without further adieu, it may be sage to share what I've come across so far, and perhaps to continue to do so, as the opportunity arises.

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    For starters, we have at least stock-markets in the region. For example, there is an Azerbaijani stock exchange located in Baku, as well a Georgian stock exchange. There is also an Armenian stock exchange, which we might count as a Caucasian investment portal.

    For Dagestan, a region of Russia per se, which is the hometown of the Boston-Marathon related individuals, we also have a few stocks listed on the Russian stock exchange.

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    Sites/Sources;

    Georgian Stock Exchange;

    http://www.gse.ge/

    Baku(Azerbaijan) Stock Exchange;

    http://www.bfb.az/?lang=en

    Armenian Stock Exchange;

    http://www.nasdaqomx.am/en/index.htm

    Dagestani commercial entities listed on the Russian Stock Exchange;

    http://corprussia.com/okved/671200/region/5

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    Apart from that perhaps one could say that it is somewhat vague, but that oil, and the important of Azerbaijan in so far as oil pipeline and shipping routes is concerned is somewhat significant in so far as larger countries in the region are concerned, namely China and Russia. For, pipelines though the Caucuses could help Russia have another route into Europe as can kind of be seen from this image;

    (click to enlarge)

    source;

    http://www.rzeczpospolita.pl/teksty/wydanie_060904/swiat_a_1-1.F.jpg

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    China could benefit from oil flowing through baku as well as can be seen from the following image which has Azerbaijan, appearing as a sliver on the left side of the map. For, Azerbaijan is just across the Caspian from Kazakhstan and Turkemenistan, and China is a big fan of running pipelines through Kazakhstan, and perhaps ultimately in the future, pipelines may link the Gulf nations and their resources directly to China via pipelines, hence unless these pipelines are run through Iraq etc., they may be conveniently run indirectly per se through the Caucuses. How the Caucuses, and Azerbaijan's important in all of this is determined can perhaps be better seen through looking at this map which is albeit more concerning with the Stan's, but perhaps still a good source of perspective on the issue per se;

    source; http://www.sras.org/img/photo/pipeline_china_kz.jpg

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    perhaps this image is helpful too;

    (click to enlarge)

    source;

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/__FrAMUiShGU/TIvwGyP0moI/AAAAAAAAAFI/k7zbP1dX-Sk/s1600/Kazakhstan-China-pipeline.jpg

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    Hence though perhaps at first glance, the region's economy its self isn't so available per se, to strait-forward investments, the region may play a somewhat important role in the rest of Asia's energy situation per se. Perhaps over the course of future investigations more untold secrets of this region's investment space will be unlocked as well, but for now here's at least perhaps a somewhat interesting macro-perspective on the significance of this region geographically, along with some introductory investment related information concerning the stock markets for example, as discussed above.

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    Hopefully soon, we will come across some "Circassian" beauties per se, in the continued search for the Moby-dick of Caucasian investment, but for now we may perhaps at least have a somewhat more fleshed out perspective on the regions in general.

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    May everyone's investing be great, and positions "fattened" per se, and may we all sleep well knowing so.

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    Thanks again for reading.

    Jan 28 1:47 AM | Link | Comment!
  • Circassian Beta: The Journey

    Since it may be fair to say, that EWO, or the Austrian ETF per se, may be a fair, "undercover" yet efficient way to invest in what was once the "Austro-Hungarian", Turkish, and Russian empires. Let us now move on to the snow-cover peaks, and "wild-west" of Russia, namely the Caucasus.

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    The Caucasus, like Eastern Europe, were one divied up between several larger empires at one point in time. This topic perhaps even touches on the Sochi games to a certain extent, with many of the local tribesman from the Caucasus, and from the Sochi region in general, having at one time or another faced the brunt of a massive imperial onslaught, which interestingly enough, happened right about the same time period as our "Indian" wars per se, with similar sort of dynamics interestingly enough, being play.

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    Just as it took some revolutionary Military leaders in the US, like the almost forgotten(due to neutrality in the Civil War) William S. Harney "Prince of Dragoons", to overcome the nimble, and in some sense, superior tactics of the locals in the west per, it took the heavy handed, and unorthodox approach of the famous General Ermalov, "the Lion...." to overcome the scattered tribes, which were very much on their own home turf per se, for the Russians to come away with the win in Circassia, now the Caucasus.

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    In Russian literature, there is a sort of romancing of the Caucasus period, just as their is perhaps the sort of one time-mass appeal, of the Buffalo Bill Wild-West-Show, contemporaneously here in the US. Pushkin and Leromontov, captured, the fleeting lack of romance in the area with their various works like Leromontov's "A Hero of Our Time", and Pushkin's series of short stories which have a similar effect. If one is really interested, one can even note the change in timbre, per se concerning Russia's intrigue, and then disillusionment through chronologically reading works on the Caucasus per se in Russian literature. To cite a few; noting the sort of romancing of the "Circassian mystique"(somewhat romantic) in Pushkin's "captive of the Caucus", which turns into a, sort of discussion of not-so romantic realities of disposable allies, and romantic-nobility, cast aside by the progression of empire in Leo Tolstoy's "Hadji Murad". This literature its self is somewhat mysterious and beguiling, since Tolstoy seemingly wrote a book, after Pushkin with the same title; namely "captive of(or prisoner of) the Caucusus.

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    Needless to say, the Caucus have a sort of split history. Their tendency towards Islam in some cases, has at times lent them a certain sense of solidarity with the Turks, acknowledged by the Russians. At times, the Russian Imperial will has forced the area into the sort of Russian empire with the unstoppable vigor with which the Russians pursued complete ownership of the area, including tribe relocations and in so many word "Trails of Tears", just as the US was doing with the native in the west.

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    Either way, in a coming piece perhaps we should have the opportunity to delve further into this region, and perhaps to see if their are any good investments or proxies for "direct investment", one way or another coming away with a perhaps well studied taste for the regions financial cuisine per se.

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    Perhaps for the sake of simplicity, and geography per se, it would be wise to start with the countries of Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Armenia, which are just about smack dab where the Caucus region is per se, and hopefully, we will find a way to get at that oh-so-mysterious "Circassian" aka Caucasian Beta per se, hopefully finding another unique marble per se, to through into our portfolio, to give our potential portfolios that extra bit of glimmer and shine, and resilience, in the face of whatever the financial markets may have to throw at them. Hopefully this will also allow our portfolios to be as strong as a "Circassian tribesman", while all the wilst being as seductive, as an oft(once upon a time) romanticized Circasssian beauty, and all together our portfolio's may be all the fractionally richer for it.

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    Perhaps hence as we unravel the mystique of the Circassian landscape, a few decent investment ideas may also come up, and potentially leave us the richer for our troubles per se.

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    I hope everyone's returns are as feroicias, as a band of cossacks, coupled with some dexterous Cirassian freedom fighters, and that all together everything is going well.

    Jan 16 6:36 PM | Link | Comment!
  • A Discussion Of NFL Game Variables

    As of recently I've begun thinking about American football. Though it isn't so set-in-stone, I believe that upon reflecting on the matter per se, that I have come to a better understanding, of the nature of Football per se, and more specifically predicting who will win, boiling it down essentially(for average scenarios), to a few key positions that will enlighten the viewer/spectator as to who the ultimate "victor" will/maybe.

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    Before, that's discussed perhaps it might be sage to reflect upon sports betting in general. When I was in high-school, I lived in a large dormitory, with 50 or so other guys. Needless to say, I met a variety of interesting people, and it was an interesting experience all-together. Its not so often perhaps that one gets such an intimate view per se into the habits and tendencies of such a large group of one's fellow people, especially in today's digitally buffered society per se.

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    Either way, one of my former dorm-mates, was an exceptional sports gambler. It was interesting discussing this topic with my former dorm-mate, because though this isn't exactly what this piece is about, they enlightened me, as to the variety of different approaches to sports gambling. Though it may be easier to guess the "winner" of a game per se based on "points", its perhaps a horse-of-a-different-color, to make a wager per se, based on whether quarterback X will make more short passes, than basketball player X will make 3 pointers for example. That was an interesting variety of gambling I had never observed before, and perhaps what was impressive, is how someone under 18 did that from behind a rather intrusive firewall per se, its perhaps another story of "beating the odds" hehe, but perhaps that's a matter which is not so pertinent, which to be honest, I think involved emailing third parties per se, but either way, it was an interesting exposure to a unique perhaps facet of sport-wagering.

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    For football, taking past performance into account, I believe that in so many words the most important area on the field per se, is the area, that's approximately 1 or 2 yards behind the defensive line(from their back foot-extending behind them further), to about 20-30 yards ahead of that aforementioned imaginary line per se.

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    While at less serious levels of football star-players can really change the dynamics of the game in general, at more widely broadcast levels, it may be really a matter of "luck"determined by one key factor.

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    That key factor, perhaps is a juxtaposition imho. Its in so many words, a qualitative understanding of whether or not, the full-back(bigger running back), and tight-end will be capable of completing short catches per se, and if the quarter back is good enough to guide said passes, in a timely manner, hence preventing injury to the pass recipients(as much as possible, by allowing recipient to get in and out of "danger zones" per se, hence extending the longevity of the approach due to the maintained health of the individuals involved, while at the same time allowing the offensive team in question to control the play-clock(short-pass to out-of-bounds), and accrue short yardage, on a repeatable basis.

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    To counter this perhaps, we may have to weigh this offensive cadre's skill per se, in catching/dexterity, etc. against the opposing defenses, outside line-backers similar traits, and the middle line-backers ability to prevent the catching of short passes.

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    If the offense is better suited to making quick short-catches(a la "West coast offense"), then perhaps they are very likely to win, if they are not, then it may be more a field-goal determined free-for-all, most commonly determined by either a rogue long-pass-completion, some other rogue plays, rogue penalties, or fumbles.

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    However, if one thinks of predicting said event, like a long term investment, perhaps if one is on the "correct" side, aka that which barring extraneous variable like those mentioned above, then more often than not, one will be on a net positive position per se, as in choosing the winning team.

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    Not to diminish the team-mates that Jeremy Shockey played with, but I think he is a good example, of how this relatively simple, yet accurate paradigm may be proven at least on average to be correct.

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    For Jeremy Shockey, and some other quick, sure-handed tight-ends per se, have been on several super-bowl winning teams through-out their career, teams which are built upon the juxtapositions mentioned above. Most specifically, the New York Giants, who have seemingly in the past, made an effort, to have a solid line-backer, to prevent short passes, while simultaneously having a decent quick-pass recipient like a sure-handed per se, tight ended to conversely catch short passes. The NY Giants have a relatively decent record over the recent past, and I believe that their coaches grasp of this per se, may be a key reason why.

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    Perhaps an example, of why having somewhat nimble, and decent-catching fullbacks/tight-ends is a tremendous boon, can be seen from teams, that do not have the aforementioned sort of offenses. One will, generally speaking, see them run their fullback on second and third downs per se, into sort of unrealistic expectations of this somehow, being a yardage-positive play. This rarely works, and when a team does this perhaps, it is not exactly that entertaining, nor is it that really a good of an offensive option, and if both teams do this, then perhaps the game will most-likely be a field goal-based game.

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    Hence perhaps to distill it all down, maybe the crux of this whole thing is whether the fullback and tight-end can catch in general, and further whether they will be able to catch short passes against the opposing team per se.

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    Though it may sounds simple, and overlook in a Modiglianian sense, many of the variable mentioned as being "determining factors", in the non-ideal team, I believe that in the long-run, this may perhaps prove to be a somewhat legitimate in some cases, criteria via which to deduce who will win in a specific US football match-up.

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    None the less, maybey others are far beyond this point in sports prediction, like my former dorm-mate, taking into account specific players tendencies per se, but perhaps this may help someone out there at least reflect upon their own theories, or to perhaps predict a few outcomes themselves. Hopefully everyone's investing is going great.

    Jan 15 10:05 AM | Link | Comment!
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