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  • Today's Economic Data: Feeding the Market's Bipolarity [View article]
    Consumer Confidence and Consumer Sentiment out Thursday morning are the two that really matter, since comps for the ICSC and Redbook numbers are erroneous. Similarly, traffic and initial sales estimates from retailers on "Black Friday" will give a gauge of actual holiday spending plans. Gallop shows consumer holiday spending expectations at $638, which is higher than the November 2008 estimate of $616 but nearly the same as the December 2009 poll estimate of $639. But what's really concerning, is that 34% of respondants say they will spend less on holiday expenditures while 8% say they'll spend more. Is this the recovery we've been hearing about?

    Remember a worse '09 holiday sales season with '08 comps means we're still in decline in revenue terms. When we realize slashing jobs drives profits but doesn't solve revenue issues we might be getting somewhere.

    For more insights:
    Nov 25 12:04 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Has Buffett Lost His Mind? [View article]
    High Oil will definitely be a thing of the future which will benefit a BNI stake, but the comment concerning owning assets because the dollar is getting weaker is just too vague and completely characteristic of the ENTIRE market at present. There was a great article in the FT which explained how many money managers were buying stocks because they had no other options. Brokers' clients are scared of exposure to currencies or options and the short squeeze over the past seven months has been enough to bring retail brokers' buy-and-hold bibles back out of the pew box.

    The resulting investments in U.S. equities has continued to the point where all of the honest money is coming back onto the table, while the shorts are still "holding on" and leveling out equities about 25% below the crazy range. It won't take much to break this beast of a lie now called a bull market, but it may take time. Stimulus 2.0 here in the U.S. and the potential failure of such efforts by congress/Obama might be the key to cracking the glass menagerie known as "BULLS".

    For insights:

    On Nov 23 06:03 AM gambitrader wrote:

    > I believe Warren Buffet is very strategic. Through my research I
    > have come to one conclusion - Mr Buffet is diversifying his massive
    > USD holdings. If the feds reflation efforts succeed, the USD will
    > be worth less than now, and oil will be much higher. Both elements
    > explain his recent actions in markets. A higher oil price will benefit
    > rail freight, and a lower USD will inflate all assets in the future.
    Nov 24 11:23 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Inflation or Deflation: What 'Quantity Theory of Money' Can Tell Us [View article]
    Kudos on the article indeed... There needs to be more emphasis put on international and domestic fiscal policy from an economics standpoint. It grounds the hype to the beautiful world of assumptions and perfect markets, which is a necessary and beneficial exercise.

    Take a look at what is happening to Japan's stock market in the midst of -2.4% yoy DEFLATION. It seems that perhaps here GDP destruction and lack of velocity are enough to truly cause a deflation issue. It's interesting that deflation and money printing to fund government spending are coinciding, but the trend is obviously unsustainable.

    Go to for a great article on what can happen to an economy (Japan) when the stimulus measures taken to revive an economy don't catch before the debt is too much to handle and something has to give.
    Nov 24 07:46 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Why a Market Crash Doesn’t Matter [View article]
    The shortened Thanksgiving week may catch investors off guard if they're expecting it to be as eventful as it is long. There are a slew of economic data to be released which will spell out the true strength of the housing market as well as the feelings of consumers going straight into the holiday spending season. While Holiday spending is expected to beat 2008 benchmarks, it has the potential to miss the mark, and consumer confidence and sentiment reports out on Tues and Wed will show us how they feel. Black Friday will be watched extremely closely for any inkling of store traffic and sales data.

    A "correction", "pullback", "nose dive", or whatever you want to call a negative move in broad U.S. equity indexes will most definitely have a negative impact on the U.S. economy at a time where appreciated share prices have been the only factor to buy time for American companies with declining revenues and only so much cost to cutting to be done.

    Take a closer look at the economic data to be released in the November 23, 2009 Thanksgiving week at:
    Nov 22 10:16 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • U.S. - China Meeting Outcome: China Has the Upper Hand [View article]
    All nods here...

    China is communist, therefore their government centrally plans the economy. China is meeting the lofty goals of 8% GDP growth, set by government leaders. Whether china just got lucky or sees something the U.S. does not, it's hard to argue with the effectiveness of their stimulus package, and they aren't going to change their strategy until they see growth that is well above "potential growth" for their economy.

    The troubling thing is that potential growth is not defined by markets, but instead Sino-financial policy which may peg potential growth somewhere near per-recession levels. Only when GDP passes these unrealistic thresholds will we see stimulus removed, including the pegged Renminbi to the Dollar.
    Nov 18 07:40 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Roubini Says 'Don't Forget About Me' [View article]
    Just one second...

    Whitney put a buy on GS and it rallied something like 25%, then she put a sell on it.

    She wasn't wrong about that

    On Nov 17 05:06 PM DonFurio wrote:

    > Watch the CNBC interview, while bearish, she clearly says that if
    > there is another recession it will be small. She seems to be focusing
    > more on the fact that spending will have to be more from wages/investments
    > not debt and that credit card lines have been reduced a lot. She
    > has been wrong for most of the year. She was never really bullish
    > until late this summer and missed most of the gains. She correctly
    > predicted C problems, but if you go back to analyst's track records,
    > she was always near the bottom when you look at stock performance
    > to buy/sell recommendations.
    > Nouriel Roubini, now don't get me started on this guy. He called
    > for a recession every year since 2003. He said in the beg of 2009
    > that there was no way that the big banks were not going to have nationalized
    > by the fall of 2009 and that we would be in a depression. He laughed
    > off the earlier signs that the economy was stabilizing in the late
    > spring, calling the green shoots, "tumbleweed". Supposedly though,
    > he's living the life right now, he gets paid a lot to travel around
    > and give speeches and hooks up with lots of girls sometimes 15 years
    > younger than him.
    Nov 18 12:09 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Roubini Says 'Don't Forget About Me' [View article]
    Whitney and Roubini are worth listening to because their words still move the markets. Admitting this fact within itself, that markets are still scared by these grizzlies, should say something about the foundation of the economy.

    If you read my stuff you'll see that I'm still comfortable as a 600 lb hibernating mammal myself. How can I be calm as this market keeps climbing? Simple, it's impossible to expect anything but a disastrous outcome from a "bull market" where every single asset, minus the currency those assets are traded in, continues to appreciate along side each other.

    We're living in bedlam with these markets and it's becoming more crowded by the day.

    Check out my latest article on Bernanke's contradictory mandate:
    Nov 18 12:05 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold: Overbought, But Still Trending Up [View article]
    Gold is a beast to be reckonned with during these times to say the least.

    Reasons for why investors won't pull out of the heavy metal include (1)the still present fear factor which so silently speaks out through the metal, (2) the hedge against inflation which has already begun in asset prices, (3) the realization that even upon a pullback in equities the potential for dollar resilience in the long run is historically low.

    I doubt that there will be much of a chance for gold to give investors a second to buy it and that it will soon divert it's tragectory from the non-precious metal commodities.
    Nov 17 02:57 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Crude Oil Inventories Back on the Upswing [View article]
    All this "peak oil" talk is ENTIRELY misplaced. Oil is doubly overvalued by the phantom recovery represented by bloated share prices as a result of jobslashed earnings and by the U.S. Dollar which continues to weaken.

    Peak Oil is a long term, macro, supply side theory which has been completely discounted into the price per barrel. The general theory behind the world running out of oil has been around since the 70's, since which time developing countries around the world have found billions of barrels in fields and technology has become cheap enough compared to LT SWT Price/barrel to "re-well" old fields for a profit.

    Take your bantering somewhere else.
    Nov 13 01:19 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Five Ways to ‘Kick the Tires’ on Your ETF [View article]
    I hear a lot of people ranting and raving about the drawbacks to leveraged and inverse ETFs because of the imperfect match to their target returns, but they do serve an incredibly useful purpose and perhaps are catching too much flack. ETF managers must enter and exit positions held to achieve returns equal to the target and simultaneously manage the price of the fund to reflect the demand for the ETF itself. It's not uncomon to see issues with the commodity ETFs as well, since the spot price of the ETF reflects spot prices of different futures contracts which must reset at the end of each month, causing for a gravitational of the ETF price higher or lower to match next months contract going rate.

    All said it's not a perfect instrument, but the levergaged ETF offers the benefits of an aggressive vehicle without the interest from buying on margin and the inverse funds allow a trader to short an industry with a loss limited to the value of the share, as opposed to unlimitted losses from a short position.

    Besides, whether a fund reaches exactly 200% of the movement in the target index or asset over a days time shouldn't make or break your trades. The true risk comes from long term positions in ETFs which tend to wash out desired performance based on the daily resetting of the assets held by the ETF managers.

    As always, trade at your own risk...
    Nov 13 01:10 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Geithner's 'Deeply' Held Belief in the Dollar [View article]
    Talk is cheap Timmy. By printing and selling bonds the U.S. government has taken the stance that the dollar is unimportant and that the primary objective is growth. A strong dollar strong growth, by way of stimulus, policy is an oxymoron and should be rebuked by traders, investors and U.S. constituents.

    Grow up Timmy and give us something to go on here. Simply WISHING for a stronger dollar, or similarly saying we support "strong dollar policies", is completely useless.

    There will be cries from the left (Obama/Dodd/Frank/Pell... for more stimulus and when this happens Tiny Tim will have his chance to truly support or revoke "strong dollar" policy in the face of a fading recovery or cheaper greenbacks.
    Nov 12 08:29 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Getting Technical: The Humpy Pattern Thesis Lives On [View article]
    The "crazy lows" for the S&P were still in double digit p/e ratios. The pattern is a bull market. The market and corp. earnings are working together to perpetuate a self fulfilling prophecy. The "pattern" is unsustainable, as Untrusting suggested above, and must reach a tipping point. The key is determining the catalyst.

    Just as the market as decided it's own upward destiny, there will come a day where the buying trend becomes obviously inappropriate when considering actual economic health. I for one felt this way months ago, yet the market is broad. S&P 1100 may be it, but the MACD and Slow Stochastics are suggesting we pop through the highs.

    The craziness continues...
    Nov 11 10:48 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • GE to Close Its Only U.S. Solar Panel Factory [View article]
    The whole purpose of green energy is to be more efficent, so by definition there should be few permanent jobs created as a result of green energy. The only way to keep costs low in America is to cut workers out of the equation and automate, automate, automate. This will likely be the result of new "green technology" and has been the trend in our economy as jobs dissapear in a consumer base too wealthy (globally speaking) for their own good.
    Nov 10 09:07 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Analyzing U.S. Economy in Terms of Housing [View article]
    Smiling as I write this... I too am infuriated by the seemingly ignorant market rally and don't think for one instant that we have seen the end of the pain. If you notice I specifically cited the bottom in the HPI as a "technical victory" and went on to admit that the "devalued Dollar" may be responsible for much of the bottoming process.

    I feel shocked to be grouped with Cramer and feel that perhaps the message of the article was to subtle at first glance. Read some of my other stuff and you'll better understand my views...

    The below article will shed light on my expectations for equities, the U.S. dollar, and commodities:

    On Nov 10 11:07 AM enigmaman wrote:

    > As to your timely remarks " The bottom in housing" todays news indicates
    > a real estate group says home prices fell in eight out of every 10
    > U.S. cities in the third quarter of this year as heavily discounted
    > distressed sales made up 30 percent of all deals.
    > So maybe the bottom that Cramer predicted and claimed was the second
    > quarter and one that you just said was " plainly obvious, was not
    > as plain, obvious or the bottom, better luck next time!
    Nov 10 07:48 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Analyzing U.S. Economy in Terms of Housing [View article]
    -article: "The above data is uplifting and potentially foreshadows a prosperity founded on yet another housing recovery, yet it's equally likely that the devalued U.S. Dollar accounts for much of the shift in prices and that stimulus takes recognition for sales..."

    -article: "How then would an asset appreciation recovery in China effect America's economy, when assets here are only appreciating in dollar terms but remaining flat in foreign currencies (the case in recent months)? We would argue that it would affect America quite badly, and only cause an asset appreciation bubble in China and nations with high enough savings and stimulus to kick start private spending or economies tied closely to commodity production..."

    At quick glance some may view the article as a U.S. Housing economic puff piece, but it is instead an argument for why a bottoming HPI is most likely the result of devalued Dollars and that it will NOT lead the U.S. to sustained recovery.

    It is my view that the old norm of an America dominated global economy is wanning and that trade partnerships between less developed nations must grow if the western economic engine of growth fails to start.

    However, in the event that America, U.K. and E.U. leaders resume their previous negative growth patterns, as opposed to anemic growth, we see the asset price bubbles in developing nations and commodity based economies crashing, save the few tied most strongly to precious metals.
    Nov 10 07:39 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment