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Mike Serebrennik

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  • Farmland Is The Next Big Thing In REITs [View article]
    When thinking about farmland, the following risks come to mind:

    Drought
    Erosion
    Depletion
    Soil salinization
    Poor management by renters
    Compaction
    Waterlogging

    A risky investment indeed.
    Jul 5 07:31 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Analysis: The worst is over for DreamWorks Animation [View news story]
    I watch both DIS and DWA animation movies and find that DWA films do not have the same "soul" as DIS films do. Yet, long DWA and regrettably, missed my chance to buy DIS at an attractive price a couple of years ago.
    Jun 30 12:59 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Best Passive Retirement Strategy In The World [View article]
    In my opinion, a retirement portfolio should be positioned to weather most predictable risks (I am not even talking about unpredictable adverse events). With this in mind, consider the following.

    Rapid inflation can cause faster than normal depletion of the CD part of the portfolio, and there is a real risk stock market won't keep up with inflation, such as in case of stagflation. This has happened before and can happen again.

    Underexposure to internationally derived revenue is an unnecessary risk. You say "We are card-carrying USA bulls for the rest of this century. The US military has virtually nothing left to strategically accomplish, and will continue to secure everything important to the US economy." I hope all of the plural "you" carry bullish cards made of gold, because you know nothing about the future and your bullish wishing won't make it so. Your opinion of what the US military will do for the rest of the century is less than unhelpful because having no opinion and saying "I don't know" would be more accurate. Does the situation in Syria and Iraq not warrant some caution? Did China suddenly become our friend? Russia? North Korea? Iran? Things are all sunshine-and-lollipops in Lybia?

    You also say "The US has the best geography in the world with Europe on one side and Asia on the other. The US has the oldest constitution in the world and a remarkably stable government. The US dollar is the world's reserve currency and has advantages and stabilities built in relative to other currencies." Africa has great geography too - America on one side and Europe and Asia on the other. While good geography can be an advantage, your discussion of it is lacking. US constitution has been amended beyond recognition, and you may want to limit your reliance on it. Your next point about stable government, in light of recent partisan brinksmanship and politics-over-policy attitude of both sides of the isle, is also questionable at best. Also, US dollar may or may not remain the world's reserve currency much longer. Reserve currency has changed before and can change again.

    Having given you this blasting, not all is bad with your idea. Having a cash buffer could help, but I would suggest a modifier - that the cash buffer be allowed to purchase securities in the down markets, not just wait them out. I don't mind the lack of bonds in your portfolio. But I would diversify the stock portfolio better.

    Back to predictions... "The world economy will continue to be dysfunctional until the population pyramid looks like a pyramid again in about 25 years. The central banks of the world will continue to accommodate for a long time."

    You don't know that. The future is not obvious like that.
    Jun 26 06:13 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Don't Fall Asleep! [View article]
    Bret, is a market pullback the only adverse scenario you entertain? It would have to be large enough to justify capital gains taxes you may have to pay on your sales...

    What if the market stagnates and inflation picks up? Then your strategy will result in loss due to taxes and loss of purchasing power of cash.

    Also, let's say you needed the income from your holdings... How would you generate it if you sold off a part of the income-producing portfolio? Sell calls on the remaining holdings (but that would position you for forced and taxable sales)?
    Jun 19 12:57 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • BASF Has Lagged On A Relative Basis, But Excels On Its Own Merits [View article]
    Stephen, nice piece. I've owned BASFY since mid $60s, it's been a nice ride. Perhaps by not selling, I am letting the tax tail wag the investment dog?
    Jun 19 12:05 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Doesn't Bohai Pharmaceutical Go Up? [View article]
    "Knowing this bit of information makes any investment in Bohai be straightforward. One can buy the shares - as long and as soon as Bohai pays up these notes, and not before."

    So if Bohai makes good on these notes, it is suddenly honest?

    A philosophical example: if a thief returns what he stole, does he cease to be a thief?
    Jun 18 10:53 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Det Norske: 200% Upside Potential After Game-Changing Acquisition [View article]
    This article told me that it would have been nice to have owned Marathon Oil Norge AS prior to acquisition.
    Jun 17 10:18 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 2 Cash-Rich Small Caps With Recent Insider Buying [View article]
    Looks like FCSC got its cash from share issuance...
    Jun 16 10:49 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • I Have No Fear Of A Market Crash Or A Significant Correction, Here's Why: Part 1 [View article]
    Alpha, bad stuff happens on a much smaller time scale than burning out of stars. Look at the 20th century. I think 21st century may see acceleration of random adverse events; the world's volatility has been increasing.
    Jun 15 08:59 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • I Have No Fear Of A Market Crash Or A Significant Correction, Here's Why: Part 1 [View article]
    Zolimox - you do not know the nature of the next black swan, so you do not know what you need to survive it. But at least you aren't saying you are unafraid of what may come.
    Jun 15 08:58 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • I Have No Fear Of A Market Crash Or A Significant Correction, Here's Why: Part 1 [View article]
    Mike N, black swans do not loom. They blindside. Chuck's FAST graphs are visual shortcuts that oversimplify the analysis process, with loss of important information and considerations. Hence their danger.
    Jun 15 12:37 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • I Have No Fear Of A Market Crash Or A Significant Correction, Here's Why: Part 1 [View article]
    One cannot have a safety plan for the black swan, because they are impossible to foresee. But I don't say I have no fear of a significant correction - that's just bravado. I am holding a part of my portfolio in cash, realizing that cash is vulnerable too - but I am OK seeing my cash balance being eroded by inflation until I can deploy it into cheap stocks during correction. The win from that will likely compensate me for inflation losses.
    Jun 15 12:32 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • I Have No Fear Of A Market Crash Or A Significant Correction, Here's Why: Part 1 [View article]
    Mike, I can just hear a dinosaur saying that right before the impact :) Read "The Black Swan."
    Jun 15 12:29 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • I Have No Fear Of A Market Crash Or A Significant Correction, Here's Why: Part 1 [View article]
    Applying logic to politicians is itself not logical.
    Jun 15 12:28 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • I Have No Fear Of A Market Crash Or A Significant Correction, Here's Why: Part 1 [View article]
    Pete, how is the US getting stronger? A larger debt? China and Russia catching up militarily, technologically and financially? Increasing taxes and regulations? Polarization and brinksmanship in Washington?
    Jun 14 06:20 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
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448 Comments
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