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Tom Guttenberger  

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  • Robert Shiller Thinks Stocks Are Overvalued. I Don't [View article]
    To make a contrarian argument - What happens when social security goes under?

    To me, it is the most obvious jeopardization of P/E ratios since the program itself was instated in the 1930s...If you need cash you don't need stock, so for many - liquefying (stock/index) investment is the only means of sustainability....Or maybe things continue to go up??

    The psychological feedback loop of market is laughable...I would say this - If I was from one of the countries that real world GDP was being driven from, I would continue to invest in those countries. Wealth chases its own wealth.
    Jan 29, 2011. 03:16 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Four Forex Themes for 2011 [View article]
    Still trying to wrap my mind around this situation. I've got a few questions maybe someone out there could help clarify.

    Regarding the ~300% debt to GDP - This is a nominal number not a net number correct? How else could it even get to that level, right?

    Also if we assume that the ratio would want to return to the normal lets say ~200% debt/GDP, would the fact that it is held by other Japanese people speed up or slow the process?

    I am guessing by the movements in the currency it would slow it down.

    But I can't really figure out why that would be the case.

    If a country is owed money to another I would think it would be in their best interest to keep the value of that currency high to be sure that when they did get paid back they are getting more value. The China / US situation seems like it would be an example of this. It would seem like this logic would hold unless the lending country is really concerned that the borrowing country would completely default. But when the country is among the world's largest exporters, and has a Reserve banking system at its back to print more money, and devalue the currency, if need be. A complete default would seem like a very low probability.

    So in the case of Japan, since it is all financed internally, don't the lending citizens need to be more concerned about other citizens defaulting on them relative to an entire country? It would seem the smaller the borrower the higher the risk should be. This would make me think that the fact that the debt is self-funded should only encourage the currency to depreciate faster.

    I don't know, just want to share the thought.
    Jan 28, 2011. 11:12 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Four Forex Themes for 2011 [View article]
    So forgive me if this is an ignorant comment, I legitimately may not understand the concept of self-funded debt too well, or my facts may be outdated/just plain inaccurate...

    I recall reading an issue of the economist roughly a year ago about national debts, and I am trying my best remember some of these figures. If anyone has the updated figures that would be great.

    Off the top of my head I remember Japan having a total of ~300% debt to GDP with ~200% being attributed to the public sector and ~100% attributed to corporate and personal debts.

    I think the US's total was north of ~200% but had a more balanced ratio of private and public debts. I think most of the EU was in similar circumstances as well. With the main difference being - higher corporate debts, but lower personal debts.

    Again correct me if I'm wrong, and if someone has updated figures that would be great.

    Would it be fair to consider Japan's debt "self-funded" if the ratio is just better in comparison to other countries? Because it seems, to me, that calling their debt self funded is a kind of misnomer.
    Jan 28, 2011. 07:36 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Four Forex Themes for 2011 [View article]
    Has to happen naturally, their last intervention was pretty ineffective. I feel like there's just too much volume running through currency markets for govt intervention to make a huge difference.
    Jan 27, 2011. 02:04 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Four Forex Themes for 2011 [View article]
    With their sovereign debt at the levels it is, only reason I can imagine the yen got here in the first place is to regain parity in cost of employment (~5% unemployment rate).

    Any thoughts?
    Jan 27, 2011. 02:56 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Four Forex Themes for 2011 [View article]
    Love to be long virtually anything against the Yen. Chart finally looks like its cooling off (maybe??).
    Jan 27, 2011. 02:52 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • A First Shot in the Coming Class War? [View article]
    Author does take an extreme stance, but points out the potential problem with polar economic circumstances. Its an issue that no one wants to talk about, but could someday be a problem...
    Jan 10, 2011. 10:49 AM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A First Shot in the Coming Class War? [View article]
    Excellent article. These facts and figure you provided have confirmed some suspicions I have had about the possible catylsts of increased social unrest. I hope that it doesn't escalte, but who knows. I feel like President Obama does an excellent job (better than anyone else could) of instilling hope in our nation's middle and lower classes, and this alone can be powerful force to neutralize the emotions felt from the polarizing economic statistics you have pointed out.

    I know there are hundreds of thousands of Anti-Obama people out there, but partisanism aside, you simply can't tell me everything he does is wrong or terrible. If you anything he hasn't been as leftist as most would have anticipated. Full discloser - I am a Ron Paul fan.
    Jan 10, 2011. 10:05 AM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • AGL Resources: A Value Buy in Natural Gas [View article]
    Their operating margins were ~20% last year in the terrible nat gas market that you mentioned correctly. They seem profitable enough to me. Nothing but upside from here.
    Jan 7, 2011. 04:00 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • AGL Resources: A Value Buy in Natural Gas [View article]
    We are on the same page. And can I just reiterate how much I like the deal for AGL. An acquisition that includes .83 shares of the acquiring company as compensation tells me Nicor thinks AGL is undervalued too. Its a major win win, and an additional win for the shareholders.

    Seekingalpha retitled the article adding "in Natural Gas" to my original title...I kind of think it makes me seem dumb, but whatever.
    Jan 7, 2011. 03:53 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bank Loans Gently Bottoming? [View article]
    Specks, I feel like its mostly been due to securitization. Banks could essensially double and triple the sizes of their books, by pooling and "selling" the risk of associated with the loans to SPVs which they still owned. It came to be know commonly as off-balance sheet financing. When these SPVs became insolvent simulaneously that's when the system melted down, and we needed massive bailouts. I've done a ton a research on it, and am planning on writing a more comprehensive article explaining it in more detail soon. Check for it.

    Cbrown, Consumer credit outstanding as a % of GDP has most recently been ~ 16.2%. Compared to ~5% in the 40's, and ~12% from about 1960-1985. It peaked out a little over 18% in 2003 and again in 2007.
    Jan 5, 2011. 07:22 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • My Top 10 Stocks for 2011 (Plus 7 Honorable Mentions) [View article]
    Antagonistic...real original. Hear is my formal apology - I'm sorry.

    Calling someone out on their 3 worst picks is always going to make them look bad, lol. FYI, I did make ~400% on the CAGC calls.

    I've learned my lesson, and am done being a dick to people on these message boards (even though I thought it was pretty entertaining). I wish you all good luck in 2011.
    Jan 5, 2011. 01:07 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Do the Facts Back Up Bernanke's QE II Claims? [View article]
    I didn't say it has worked just that it is the goal. Lending is a tricky business, and the banks just got cleaned out on highly leveraged loans, so they are naturally going to be cautious, and at times downright unfair. I think we agree, the goal hasn't yet been achieved effectively. As I said, uphill battle.

    And yes, I am partially referring to the Apples and Googles of the world. Hopefully other great American companies will continue to emerge, and as you point out, HIRE EMPLOYEES, lol.
    Jan 5, 2011. 10:56 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Goldman Sachs Makes a $500 Million Bet [View article]
    Did you see Strategy Session yesterday? They were talking about all the fees they will charge their clients if they want to get a piece of this.

    Long story short - Goldman strikes again.
    Jan 5, 2011. 07:58 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Do the Facts Back Up Bernanke's QE II Claims? [View article]
    Your small business also needs customers though, and banks to lend to these customers. QE was just trying to make lending attractive to banks again...its an uphill battle when consumer credit Charge-offs were as high as 10.6%.
    Jan 5, 2011. 06:07 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment