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Michael Nau  

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  • Investing In 2013: Remember 1977 [View article]
    Also, I'm sick of the Baby Boomers' hypocrisy: their parents had to pay high taxes in order to pay down war debts, heavily subsidize the boomers attending college and majoring in useless subjects like sociology, pay for the boomers' safety net. Now the Boomers want to cut everything now now now, but don't want to pay the debt they accumulated. And which cuts do they want? Cut Social Security and Medicare for retirees in future generations, not themselves. The spoiled generation of Boomers is trying to vote themselves a golden parachute and make us foot the bill while giving nothing back in return. They made enough of a mess already.

    Phew. Please excuse the rant.
    Feb 27, 2013. 08:54 AM | 30 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stocks More Overvalued Than 1929 [View article]
    Interesting article, I applaud that you put your money where your mouth is. I like mean reversion stories, they have intuitive appeal, but I wonder about how securities markets may have changed historically since 1929 that could invalidate comparisons. Here's some ideas:

    -Pre-SEC, fully modern accounting rules days meant that companies had disclosure practices similar to contemporary Russian firms, which for that reason trade cheaply on a p/e basis. Yes there's fraud and manipulation out there now, but nothing like the 1920s' stock pools and do-whatever-you-want accounting. Its my understanding that lack of disclosure spawned the birth of dividends as management's signal of good faith.

    -We were a much poorer country, many had no wealth, and many had a large portion of their wealth in farmland. Portfolio behavior has changed as our economy has changed.

    -Public equity markets were still emerging and focused on certain industries, a larger portion of equity assets were small, private businesses

    -Unless you count trusts or stock pools, there were few institutional investors, such as mututal funds or pension funds, that need to park a portion of their cash in equities.

    -people had high expectations for the future in 1929, and they don't now.

    Maybe there are more similarities than differences, but I'd like to hear about some sort of mechanism bringing about massive price declines.
    Feb 12, 2013. 03:47 PM | 30 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple $700: Don't Get Burned Again [View article]
    Dividend + buybacks = 10% effective yield. So I'm OK if the stock doesn't move for a while.
    Aug 19, 2013. 08:11 AM | 27 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 4 Scary Charts Warning Of The Next Financial Crisis [View article]
    Quoth the Raven, long VIX? How, VXX? Isn't its price chart pretty scary?

    Plan B, Japan controls its currency, it can always print more. So a default won't happen. What is "armageddon"? Higher inflation? That would be great for the Japanese economy, helps get rid of all that debt. I think you are confusing poor performance (due primarily to demographics) for crisis. Sure, Japan will have tepid growth, but its population is actually falling, so each citizen gets a bigger chunk of what growth there is.
    May 13, 2013. 07:53 AM | 23 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Investing In 2013: Remember 1977 [View article]
    Tas, declining work ethic? Us young people are paying out the nose to attend college, yet we are still attending in greater numbers than ever before. We are doing unpaid internships, juggling multiple part time jobs. We do not have a work ethic problem. Remember, its the Boomers who, during a time of unprecedented prosperity, decided to drop out and become hippies. We just want jobs.

    The current young generation, raised in a recessionary, post-9/11 world, will be much more like the greatest generation than the boomers. We want jobs, economic security, chances for upward mobility, just like our grandparents. And we are more than willing to work for it.
    Feb 27, 2013. 08:41 AM | 22 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Dr. Doom Has Gold Going Below $1,000: Why His Thesis Is Spot On [View article]
    Well said. Some of the goldbugs made an unfortunate connection between their political ideologies and investment decisions. Investors should be flexible and pragamatic, separating their political preferences from their portfolios.
    Jun 4, 2013. 02:06 PM | 20 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Truth Behind Apple's Numbers [View article]
    So you think AAPL is worth maybe $200 or $250 per share. That's something like $100-$150 per share ex-cash adjusting for taxes. Which means that the underling business should trade at a p/e 2-4 while yielding 8%-12%.

    My eyebrow is definitely raised.

    Long AAPL.
    May 23, 2013. 06:47 PM | 20 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • It Is Not Different This Time - It Is Worse [View article]
    Do you have any moral objections to not working? I imagine that many on SA would totally leave the labor market if they could afford to. I might. Our society's word for it is "retirement".

    But I just couldn't pull it off if I depended upon government largesse. I'd get about $200 in food stamps, and that's it, and would be ineligible if I simply quit my job to get food stamps. I'd have to be laid off. No TANF ("welfare") because I don't have kids, no section 8 because of 2+ year wait list in my area and people without kids are ineligible, no unemployment because I am not an employee according to state law, are are a growing portion of workers. SSI/SSD ("disability") applications take 2+ years to process, even if I did have a disability, which I don't. Part of the rise of disability since the 1960s is that we as a society decided that insane asylums weren't the best way of dealing with the mentally ill. You sound like the people in the 1930s who blamed the Great Depression on soup kitchens.
    Apr 7, 2013. 03:12 PM | 20 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • White House not satisfied with GOP debt ceiling offer [View news story]
    Wait, agreeing to end the shutdown and pay our debts is a compromise? Do Republicans want a shutdown or default? I thought nobody wanted those things. So what are the Republicans giving up exactly?
    Oct 10, 2013. 12:03 PM | 18 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Zombie Apocalypse Has Arrived [View article]
    This is a little too much. Ever since the 1960s, intellectuals have tried to point to pop culture fads as confirmation of their favorite social or political theory. Zizek is one of the worst. The problem is that their methodology is pseudo-scientific. Does Pokemon tell us something profound about the social circumstances of millenials? Or Miley Cyrus? Or tight-fitting jeans? Or organic food? Which pop culture phenomenon should intellectuals even focus on?

    I'm skeptical. Lets stick to actual social indicators, such as income, unemployment, crime rates, demography, etc. and leave the culture crit stuff to the english majors.
    Oct 1, 2013. 03:09 PM | 18 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • In Defense Of Apple: Battling The Mounting Hysteria [View article]
    Well said. AAPL investors need to relax. Either have some patience or add to the position. Or both. Management should serve the interest of long-term investors, not speculators playing earnings.
    Jan 24, 2013. 09:04 PM | 18 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Debt ceiling debate reportedly over [View news story]
    If Obama had half the political power you think he has, we'd have single payer.
    Oct 16, 2013. 12:10 PM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Outlook For Equities: Time To Take The Foot Off The Accelerator [View article]
    I understand the logic behind the claim that higher tax rates discourage work. Is that really true? Are there any real examples of someone deciding not to work because their tax rates went up? Everyone I know works to make a living, and voluntarily dropping out of the workforce is not an option until about age 60 when pensions/savings make it possible. Who are these people that look at tax rates to determine whether or not they should show up for work tomorrow?
    Aug 24, 2012. 04:41 PM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Death Of A Salesman: The Herbalife Cycle In Action [View article]
    I found it interesting that after the FTC announcement, HLF management found it necessary to send out a reassuring press release. Responsible managers keep their heads down and run the business and don't engage in shouting matches with shorts or tout their stock every time there is a slight price decline. They manage rather than promote.

    Its almost as if management is more interested in market perception than reality......
    Jan 6, 2014. 02:43 PM | 14 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • It Is Not Different This Time - It Is Worse [View article]
    Have you ever been on SNAP (food stamps), TANF, unemployment, section 8? How strong exactly do you think those disincentives to work are? If they are so strong, why don't more economically rational people on SA live off the system if it is such a great deal?

    As investors, in principle we are ok with living off the work of others, thats where investment gains come from.
    Apr 7, 2013. 02:58 PM | 14 Likes Like |Link to Comment