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Greg Weston  

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  • The Manipulation of Gold Prices [View article]
    Why gold is a poor long term investment, from Wharton Business School:

    knowledge.wharton.upen...
    Dec 6, 2008. 05:30 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The Manipulation of Gold Prices [View article]
    These "short selling conspiracies" sound a lot like the BS coming from the "evil naked short selling" folks a few years ago.

    Their two big stocks they whined where being manipulated were NFI and OSTK. NFI is now bankrupt and the stock worthless, and OSTK is down about 75%.

    Gold won't go down 75%, but it is not a good long-term investment. It is STILL far below its 1980 price. Even with the recent huge bear market we are in now, the S&P 500 is 8 times higher than its 1980 price. Gold, on the other hand, is down 12% over the past 28 years.

    Or you could have put your money in "fiat money" US long bonds and made more than 10% a year whole the goldbugs lost on average 0.5% a year, actually much more since they incurred storage costs.
    Dec 6, 2008. 05:17 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The Manipulation of Gold Prices [View article]
    Mr. Conrad wrote on 9/22/08 that:

    "I believe the best course of action is to sell out of index funds and stocks, and buy GLD, SLV, physical gold, silver, precious metals mining stocks, companies that own agricultural land, Swiss francs, and other solid foreign currencies."

    If you followed his advice, you would have bought GLD for $90. It is now about $74.5. SLV was around $13. It is now 9.4.

    The gold miner index he told you to buy was then 38. It is now 23.

    The Swiss Franc he told you to buy was then 94. It is now 82.

    There is no better sign of a bad investor than crying "manipulation" and sprouting conspiracy theories when his bad calls go down 20-40% in a matter of a few months.
    Dec 6, 2008. 05:07 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Starbucks a Bargain? It Almost Goes Without Saying [View article]
    The Starbucks brand I think has been permanently tarnished in the USA by retails sales at places like 7-11 and Wal-Mart and by the sales of energy drinks in tall aluminum cans. Earnings can always be boosted short-term by cutting prices on a product that has a high margin and strong brand, but this cannot continue to work.

    Another risk: At my old employer, which had about 500 white collar workers on site and provided a lot of the business for one SBUX location, decided to install a few espresso machines in the employee lunch room.

    Boom! There went tons of sales.

    Finally it is folly to invest on the idea that P/E will soon return to "normal" levels. You have no way of knowing this, and if you need you could make a much larger fortune trading SPY LEAPS.

    I would be a buyer of SBUX around 5.5, and have an alert to tell me as soon as it does.
    Dec 3, 2008. 11:00 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Payday for Car Contrarians [View article]
    I prefer automaker debt to stock. For more have a look at my article on XGM.
    Dec 3, 2008. 12:12 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Crystal River’s Q2 Write-Downs Could Bankrupt the Company [View article]
    CRZ announced today they will be delisted.

    I made my short call at 3.50, and the stock is now around 50 cents, down 85% in less than 5 months.
    Dec 1, 2008. 09:54 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Salesforce Likely To Be Below $15 By Year's End [View article]
    Good call. I am glad I read your article. I did some additional research and then went in short at around 28.

    Nov 21, 2008. 09:51 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Trading Obama: Solar Stocks, GM Debt, Ambac Calls, Lorillard and Goldman Puts [View article]
    I am not worried about new solar power market players. They money for expansion is just not there except for the established companies. It will be there again.

    Obviously solar is not as attractive during a near depression and with energy prices dropping and credit tight for those with less than sterling credit. Most of the solar plays I follow have wisely scaled down, but have not stopped growing. They are still going forward with heavy R&D expenses, which is fat that can be trimmed in an exteme crisis.

    However, long term interest rates are still low for (1) the US Gov, all the other big Western nations, and nearly all U.S. states (2) monopoly utility companies in the US and Europe (3) large non-profit organizations like universities, museums, and foundations. And they have no trouble getting financing and are all significant solar buyers.

    For these buyes, record and near-record low interest rates mean financed investments in solar power will pay off. Lower prices are a good thing to stimulate demand.

    Nov 21, 2008. 08:43 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Trading Obama: Solar Stocks, GM Debt, Ambac Calls, Lorillard and Goldman Puts [View article]
    The various GM exchange notes are all pari passu, and generally trade that way. I believe XGM is one of the larger and more liquid issues, and keeping with one keeps commissions down and is less work at tax time. BGM is fine too.

    Nov 21, 2008. 08:26 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Trading Obama: Solar Stocks, GM Debt, Ambac Calls, Lorillard and Goldman Puts [View article]
    Bogey: I have no idea how GM debt will trade until Obama is sworn in. I'm slowly allocating profits from short position into long positions at current distressed prices.

    I don't try to be perfect with timing. I try to buy XGM on days it hits new lows.

    Nov 21, 2008. 08:23 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • As Solar Plummets, Stocks Drop Below Book Value [View article]
    klemenv,

    great comment. can you provide some additional details? like where you are located, whether your calculations include tax incentives, etc.

    Nov 19, 2008. 03:39 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • China Solar Companies Slowing Production [View article]
    Raw material costs are sharply lower, and production will be scaled back to prevent a glut of finished materials. Less expansion also removes worries about cash flow to cover these investments. Meanwhile most companies locked in sales for a great deal of future production. Equity market and VC weakness blocks off what was once a steady stream of new competitors.

    Does not seem like a bad situation to me. Click on my name for my more bullish take on solar.
    Nov 11, 2008. 05:04 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Trading Obama: Solar Stocks, GM Debt, Ambac Calls, Lorillard and Goldman Puts [View article]
    Both Pelosi and Obama are not only in favor of a bailout, they are trying to get Bush to agree to one before January.

    However I don't think there will be a bailout of GM until after Obama is sworn in. As bad as its cash crunch is now, it can easily last until then. So these notes may go lower in the intervening period.



    Nov 11, 2008. 04:56 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Trading Obama: Solar Stocks, GM Debt, Ambac Calls, Lorillard and Goldman Puts [View article]
    31Oct: Wouldn't a bankruptcy invalidate warranties (putting them on par with other unsecured debt), which in turn would prevent GM from ever recovering.

    AIG, a much less important company in the eyes of the average voter has now Hoovered up $120 billion. If you forced me to guess, I think we'll see a recapitalization of GM by via a roughly $60 billion investment from TARP in exchange for 79.9% of the resulting common stock.

    This would not actually cost taxpayers $60 billion, since many of GM's obligations would revert to the government anyway in the event of a bankruptcy, via the PBGC, medicare and medicaid, unemployment, food stamps, FDIC payments to Midwestern banks that GM would bring down with it, GM stockholders and bondholders deducting losses from their capital gains taxes, etc.
    Nov 10, 2008. 04:25 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Trading Obama: Solar Stocks, GM Debt, Ambac Calls, Lorillard and Goldman Puts [View article]
    31October:

    There are two issues with coal, CO2 which is not toxic but causes global warming, and second a large number of other toxic pollutants. There is slow but study progress on the toxic pollutants issue, but coal plants are still by far the biggest source of mercury pollution.

    And while natural gas is less dirty than coal for power generation, there is still the CO2 issue. Further, the major source for natural gas in Europe is Russia, which has repeatedly shown its willingness to leverage its CO2 supplies against countries that oppose its foreign policies. This is why Germany, which is in particular vulnerable to this type of economic blackmail, is such a big subsidizer of solar despite its relative lack of sunlight.
    Nov 7, 2008. 07:36 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
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