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George Acs

 
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  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    Hey, I was just there on Sunday. Got a private tour of the West Wing, just posted a photo for you (no one else, please)

    http://j.mp/1rUVkfJ

    Interestingly, taking unauthorized photos in the West Wing is a felony, but you are allowed to take them in the Brady Press Room, which is incredibly tiny & cramped.
    Sep 9 11:51 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    It's old age. Get used to it, although there could also be equal parts of experience and boredom in the mix.
    Sep 9 11:24 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    Thanks.

    It's hard to imagine that CLF would be going any lower, but I'm still nursing paper losses on 3 individual lots and not thinking of adding risk.

    Shares are so low that even with a little bit of volatility built into premiums I'm having a hard time risking writing out of the money calls trying to pick up a few cents here and here. Right now the reward isn't screaming at me to offset the continued risk. Maybe once Drapkin and Casablanca show some substantive actions I may start thinking otherwise.
    Sep 9 11:23 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Herbalife: Who's Consuming All Those Shakes? And Why... [View article]
    I came to this article from a link provided by Herb Greenberg, for whom I have an inordinate amount of respect and believe that he is correct with regard to questions surrounding the business practices and ethics at Herbalife.

    I'm fascinated by the unfolding Herbalife story, but do wonder how it could take so long to arrive at a valid conclusion regarding its practices and activities.

    This article is certainly an interesting one and offers a very instructive glimpse into part of the underbelly culture that exists. The fact that the author has Pershing as a client doesn't dissuade me from accepting the conclusions, much as being funded by the NIH or Pfizer wouldn't have me reflexively dispute or question the validity of a drug study's findings.

    However, I find it striking to see someone (Matt Stewart) refer to "Herbalife trolls," when his own activity as a partisan has to be inordinately suspect.

    A recent article of his was also linked to by Herb Greenberg just a week ago and in reading it I realized that it was the 85th article in Seeking Alpha he had written in precisely one year on Herbalife. The Herbalife articles represented about 90% of all of his authored articles. Additionally, the same was true regarding over 1000 Seeking Alpha comments and nearly 300 Tweets over 2 years.
    Passion? Maybe.

    Does that also constitute being a troll? Perhaps, perhaps not, but there is a clear bias when one devotes so much effort and energy into a single company and produces more material than a contracted public relations company would have done for any client, such as Pershing Square.

    You certainly have to wonder whether the call "the sooner Herbalife is shut down the better," is simply related to a longstanding short position that is indicated in those many articles and accrues carrying costs daily, rather than to the validity of the outstanding issues themselves.

    At least Ackman has stated that profits from his short position would go to charity. That provides far greater credibility, at least regarding motivation, than when someone attacks a company and opponents for what appears to be purely profit motives and has seemingly devoted quite a bit of time over the past year toward that singular pursuit.
    Sep 9 11:03 AM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    You could be right, I know I do all the time, but I think it's because "they" keep hiding it on me
    Sep 9 08:28 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    That may be the best advice ever given. I may use it next month when toasting to my son and new wife, in offering them lifelong advice.
    Sep 9 08:25 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    Provide something from equivalent sources that suggests that QE1 was a "one off," or that the "Twist" was promoted as being the end solution to deliver us to monetary objectives. I'm not certain that there was anyone who believed that a single policy decision would have been a magic bullet and it seems highly unlikely that anyone with a reputation would suggest that there was any kind of magic bullet being delivered.

    Those are your projections.

    I continue to believe that QE will end, as planned, in October, unless something drastic occurs in the economy, as I had clearly stated earlier. I don't anticipate anything drastic, but neither do I expect the Federal reserve to sit and watch passively in the event that something unforeseen does occur.

    So, I guess my scenarios sound less "far out," and the hand holding stops as envisioned and telegraphed, but thanks for asking
    Sep 8 03:04 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    I do understand the concern regarding ethical issues. However, what I'm not certain of is the rationale for not engaging in trading shares.

    There is really no direct benefit that accrues to BP for your buying or selling shares, unless it is in a secondary offering where proceeds may go directly to the company. Otherwise these are private transactions between individuals or institutions.

    Boycotting trades in shares of BP or MO, or others that have ties to destructive behaviors or products isn't similar to the campaign to disengage from Krugerrand purchases, for example, where the proceeds went to and directly benefited the South African government.

    The benefit or detriment to BP, if any, is indirect, at best, from daily trading. The harm, however, if a boycott is widespread is much more likely to be borne by individual shareholders who are less resistant to large downside moves than corporations or institutions, making it quite regressive.

    BP could much better withstand any downward price pressure on shares than could individual investors and may in fact benefit from such a decline, as it could pursue its share buyback at even lower prices, thereby reducing its dividend liability and allowing it to retain even more cash from operations.

    While a similar argument was made in the case of the boycott against South African coins, that argument was specious, as there was never any evidence indicating that its citizens otherwise limited by apartheid received any benefit at all from gold coin sales.
    Sep 8 12:59 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    Re-read your allegations regarding past events and the actions of the Federal Reserve. Your suggestion is that the Federal Reserve, which is made up of individual members has acted to fool those into believing that which isn't truthful, for purposes of perpetuating a "game."

    That is a conspiracy. And as you must know, a conspiracy is "an evil, unlawful, treacherous, or surreptitious plan formulated in secret by two or more persons."

    I hope the crowd is pleased.
    Sep 8 09:19 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    I guess it helps to not believe in the ubiquity of conspiracies and to not believe that we are somehow pawns in a "game."

    At least we're fortunate to have you around to be able to see through all of the obfuscation that has the rest of us completely fooled and held hostage by these evil schemes.
    I do understand that much
    Sep 7 04:11 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    I agree that we can't possibly know the eventual path taken to close this sad series of events, but there isn't necessarily reason to fret that this week's announcement will be any kind of a death knell or shackle on BP's continued ability to be a fruitful investment
    Sep 7 04:07 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    We all are prepared for some rise in rates and the expectation has now been for sometime in early to mid 2015. Of course once it is finally reality there will be some reaction, but who knows what that reaction might be. The next part of the shoe to drop will be the size of any increase and the rapidity at which subsequent increases arrive.

    Ultimately, it won't be good as bonds start to look more attractive booth on the basis of yield and risk.
    Sep 7 04:05 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    When opening a position I want to get a premium for a near the money or in the money option that will be about 1.0-1.3% for TMUS specifically.

    For the rollovers I've been shooting for a net credit of 1.0-1.1%.
    Sep 7 04:02 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    It's always refreshing to read a frank assessment of a strategy or of the theses that defined an approach to reading the market.

    The past year, despite record after record has been very challenging for many people actively trading the market and those professional managers are having another difficult year.

    The difference is that they're not likely to be candid about it and would be more inclined to close the doors and run away from their shortcomings while opening some new funds.
    Sep 7 03:52 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Almost Nothing Can Stop A Runaway Train [View article]
    Ideally, I'd like to see MET get back to about $52.50, which it may do if interest rates have a downside bias, which may take another month to confirm.

    I don't know what to make of the call to make MET a "SIFI" and hope that might impact its pricing. At the moment I'm having a hard time seeing much upside to that designation, particularly as it may limit how much and the manner in which MET invests its huge cash stores.
    Sep 7 03:46 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
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