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  • QuickChat #238, July 24, 2012 280 comments
    Jul 24, 2012 12:16 PM

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    Great Eggspectations by stan bruns

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  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- Chevron Corp. cvs fell 2.4% as one of the worst performers among the 30 stocks in the Dow Jones Industrial Average $dj on Tuesday. Earlier, the Iraqi oil ministry said Chevron would be excluded from further participation in the nation's oil industry because the San Ramon, Calif., petroleum producer inked a deal to buy stakes in two exploration blocks from Reliance Industries Ltd. in:500325 in the Kurdish region in the northern part of the country. The decision by the Iraqi central government marks the latest sign of friction over petroleum production with the semi-autonomous Kurds.
    (C) 1997-2012 MarketWatch.com, Inc. All rights reserved. Please see our Terms of Use. MarketWatch, the MarketWatch logo, and BigCharts are registered trademarks of MarketWatch, Inc. http://bit.ly/MkPlYK
    24 Jul 2012, 12:35 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    For any of you interested in yield ...
    BB&T just offered preferred at 5 5/8 %

     

    I just reinvested the large amount of preferred that I told you had been called in the past month in it.
    24 Jul 2012, 01:16 PM Reply Like
  • RMF - Rethinking Modern Fin...
    , contributor
    Comments (165) | Send Message
     
    Thanks. Could not find the symbol on TD Ameritrade. Is it BBT.PB. I do not see this symbol there.
    30 Jul 2012, 10:55 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    RMF The symbol on my online statement is BBT.LL and it is BBT Series E preferred Non-Cumulative perpetual preferred.
    31 Jul 2012, 04:48 AM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5977) | Send Message
     
    Love the bird on the egg drawing... curious as to why you cut it off on the sides. Is the bird holding something in its beak?
    24 Jul 2012, 01:44 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    "Great Eggspectations" was a miniature sketch (the original is .7 x 2.75") I did at the "Fitzgerald Wild Chicken Festival" in Fitzgerald, GA. Wierd but true story: Around the turn of the century a local farmer imported a bunch of wild Southeast Asian chickens (that's where all chickens come from, its a jungle bird there). The chickens proved to be a poor choice for domestication or wild release (for hunting, presumably). They died off and the effort was forgotten...

     

    Except in Fitzgerald, where the wild birds flourished. Today they live and nest under houses and in old barns, living wild and free (but in town). They are small, and look something like bantams (except with that wacky, wild attitude).

     

    At any rate, it was a lousy show. It was the first show I did in that part of the state since we entered the Great Recession, and it was the first place I saw just how poor the local economy had become. Young families grouping together and quietly counting their pennies, to see if they could afford a soft drink for the youngest... People forget sometimes that these white tents we use are still just tents, and present no barrier to sound...

     

    The raw fear I saw in those folks' eyes was something I had seen before, but the last time was in Vietnam, not South Georgia.

     

    Anyway, I started doing quick art lessons for the kids, handing out small prints as "samples" (I'd rather give it away than just squat there and sell nothing). Some of the small sketches were funny, and I decided to print them up as limited editions, and "Great Eggspectations" was one of them.

     

    Its one of the local wild hens sitting on a huge egg... A dragon's egg, of course.

     

    All the little sketches are vignettes like this, tiny miniatures, stream of conciousness images taken straight out of whatever I dreamed up at that moment. There are about 50 or 60 of them (I believe I have some of them on my web site) that turned out well enough to preserve as a limited edition.
    24 Jul 2012, 02:15 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5977) | Send Message
     
    How neat! Thanks Trip.
    24 Jul 2012, 02:24 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17796) | Send Message
     
    I was wondering myself TB. Thanks for the story. Brings home to us just how fortunate some of us really are, doesn't it?

     

    HardToLove
    24 Jul 2012, 02:57 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    I thought that was a sketch of me sitting patiently on my Axion shares ;-)
    24 Jul 2012, 03:18 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Very stern look I might add.
    24 Jul 2012, 06:34 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    APPLE has big miss .. That will hurt tech tomorrow. I'm not surprised as we talked yesterday about it.

     

    Fed getting antsy and ready to move soon. Next week or September?
    What a spread and use of words.
    24 Jul 2012, 04:47 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5977) | Send Message
     
    UPS lowered its guidance for 2012 earnings per share to $4.50 to $4.70, down from prior guidance of $4.70 to $5.00.
    24 Jul 2012, 09:25 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    NFLX ugly. Added a little KGN today, and a little UAMY. Watching WLT to see if it breaks below 30
    24 Jul 2012, 10:29 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4824) | Send Message
     
    I think that I will continue to wait a while longer before added any new positions. This looks like it could stay ugly for a while to me.
    24 Jul 2012, 11:24 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    I agree, I'm just dipping my toes - I'm not diving in, too much danger of a belly flop here
    25 Jul 2012, 08:03 AM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    I don't know, K202. Seems Uncle Fedanke is going to step up to the plate, soon.

     

    I am on record as being very bearish, short term. But this announcement today, has me rethinking things. September 2010, the DOW was at 10,000. Just a couple of days ago it threatened 13,000. Here in QC, those that were so rightfully worried about the same things back in 2010, are still worried, even more so, and again rightly so, about the same damned things.

     

    Through all of this, we've all been worried immeasurably about the same things; the EZ situation, the ME situation, the US debt, Japan, China, bonds collapsing, banking fraud; municipalities, cities, states, going bankrupt, entitlements getting completely out of hand, food stamps, cyber warfare; every freaking currency out there devaluing...but again we're more than 25% higher than we were two years ago, even after this little 3% drop during the past three trading sessions.

     

    I also believe, and wrote about two/three weeks ago why (sort of an inside source via PA democrat, Bob Casey) that most of the Bush Tax Cuts, as well as most of the fiscal cliff stuff, will be extended, or just "legislated away."

     

    I am going to keep some dry powder available for when that happens.

     

    The dollar will continue to get stronger, as we watch Spain, Italy, and maybe even France now, get closer to default. I believe most of any Greek default has already been "callusly" priced in.

     

    We, as investors, play the cards we are dealt. Right now, things are shaping up for a serious rally, if the FED does do some easing, once again.

     

    Also, I haven't yet talked to my broker about your fantastic Haliburton options strategy. One of the reasons why is I suspected that, due to PMI, unemployment data, this earning season reports, coming out with dismal data, I felt that the FED just might do some more stimulus.

     

    Looks like it's coming.

     

    This is an election year, afterall. And those puppet masters in charge of the present administration, will do everything in their power to keep on being the puppet masters.

     

    It stinks. But these are the cards we are being dealt.
    25 Jul 2012, 12:05 AM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4824) | Send Message
     
    Maya - I absolutely agree. I chose my words poorly. When I said it might go on for a while I really meant a few more days, maybe even a couple of weeks if the Fed doesn't move sooner. I agree that Helo Ben won't let his buddy in the WH down for long. He has to do something to keep propping up the markets at least until the election.

     

    I should have added that I am watching for some good opportunities. I am standing over 1/2 in cash at the moment waiting for a good correction to get back in for the QE run.

     

    I think you are right about France, but that is probably a couple of years away before it blows up, imo. I just wonder what the fallout will be from Spain in the mean time. If we can keep out wits about us there will be ample opportunities to profit from all the turmoil that is likely to come about over the next few years. I'm still working on my plan to take advantage of some great things that I can see coming. Timing will be crucial, but conviction will be difficult because I am usually too early. I just have to stick with what I know and not get too fancy.
    25 Jul 2012, 12:25 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    Maya, I agree & that is what I have been saying for months now.
    With the same worries that everyone else has, you said it all when you said "this is the hand we were dealt"....and that all CEO's are saying that things are OK here in the USA, it's just europe that is killing them.
    Don't worry about China, they don't have the political mess that we have, they will do what it takes to at least level off.
    25 Jul 2012, 05:43 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    I don't think Ben is doing it to save the WH. He has worked very hard since day one in his office to pull this out and not let it do what the '30's did. It is his own legacy he is protecting & all the work and effort so that a bunch of crooked pol's don't undermine it.

     

    I say again, whether we liked it or not. It worked.
    25 Jul 2012, 05:45 AM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    Yep. Nimbleness is key.

     

    When oh when will someone invent what a "going long" really means going long meter? I am presently clueless to how long "going long" means. Your words were not chosen wrongly, the whole way to communicate time oriented investments has shrunken, become less discernible, all the way to these Fast Traders going long until the next commercial break.

     

    I don't know if you read John Mauldin or not, but in one of his latest emails, he wrote that Japan industrial equities just might go totally crazy, in the next few years.

     

    Here is the piece (And it comes with a nimbleness warning. 2/3rds the way down your scroll bar, you can read Mauldin's Japan recipe):

     

    http://bit.ly/LMJSIA
    25 Jul 2012, 12:43 AM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4824) | Send Message
     
    Read it already. I thought I could smell the lion hiding in the grass of your other comment. It's a good read. Thanks. I've got to go to bed. Three teen-aged girls having a sleep over her tonight. My daughter and friends. I just had to stay up until they finally settled down for the night.
    25 Jul 2012, 12:47 AM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    In my garden, I have some gigantic lilies right now that are absolutely polluting the entire neighborhood. Maybe an exaggeration, but my neighbor told me she could smell them right out her front door, a good 80 feet away.

     

    The smell is intoxicating.

     

    Your whiffer is doing good!
    25 Jul 2012, 12:52 AM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    I confess, I didn't see the other lion; but I've read similar thoughts on Japan, and Mauldin is a smart fellow
    25 Jul 2012, 08:10 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Japan's industial sector is not disimilar to some sectors in the American economy - they are much put upon by the wacky central government and would benefit immensely from a true restructuring of how that government finances itself and handles the levers of power.
    25 Jul 2012, 08:19 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    I started a position in
    NVAX
    S
    C (I also added to this yesterday at the close to avg. down)

     

    Will add NOK on any further pull back.

     

    This is just starter positions. Will book any gains. Maybe keep a small position in them though. Not looking to add anything else during this earnings season unless JPM tanks.

     

    Some traders are saying to add to AAPL suppliers on this sell off. It could make sense as the iPhone 5 comes out this fall, as well as the MSFT/NOK Lumia windows 8 phone...and Samsung is selling phones like crazy. Could be the trade instead of Apple for a few months.
    25 Jul 2012, 05:51 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    Yahoo. Is anyone going to bet on the new CEO to turn it around ?

     

    that a might be the 5th stock to my list above on any further pullback.
    25 Jul 2012, 05:56 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Y is a sitting duck. If the sharks (MicroSoft, Google, etc) were really paying attention, it would already have been gobbled up. The last CEO had a shot at a decent deal for the shareholders, but screwed up. Now their value is dropping and they much less likley to ever see those high offers again.

     

    I don't like their market position, strategic situation, or odds right now.
    25 Jul 2012, 08:22 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Manipulation must be getting worse...more Folks are actually talking about it.

     

    http://bit.ly/LNb12E
    25 Jul 2012, 08:34 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    As usual they are about 30 years behind.
    25 Jul 2012, 08:42 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Oops, more folks who SUPPORTED it are now talking about it.
    25 Jul 2012, 08:46 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    More screaming for QE but I am not sure we are going to see QE3 unless deflation begins, even then I think the politics wont allow it prior to election. We will probably see a lot more talk, possibly extension of ZIRP, or some other measure of manipulation but I don't expect out right money printing. I think I am on the contrarian side here.

     

    What happens after the election I would guess depends upon who wins, congress, senate and prez. Another debt ceiling raise we can count on no matter what.
    25 Jul 2012, 09:33 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    I agree dg...with everything you said. Things are not quite bad enough to outright money print ... yet.
    25 Jul 2012, 09:35 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    BB has said repeatedly that the ball is in the fiscal court now. BB extend OT to December (because that's about all the short term stuff he has left), so given the current environment, you would think he is happy with the stance he has.

     

    The one thing that may move him more than even the equities markets is housing. BB sees housing as the path to jobs (part of his mandate), thus serious deterioration in housing may move him to start buying more MBS.

     

    Europe is more likely to provide the stimulus before BB does. Although they tend to do it bit by bit, and ever so slowly the ECB's balance sheet grows.

     

    Neither the ECB or the Fed's stimulus actions have worked, and it is important to define "worked". A recovery would have meant unemployment going back down to 4% and GDP in the 8% range. The net 5 million that lost their jobs, would be back at work, and buying houses. The troubled bank list would be 30 instead of 800.

     

    The only thing BB has managed to do (and to be fair it is all he has power to do) is transfer wealth from the general populace to the financial markets. This is what he means by the "wealth effect". He hoped this would get people spending, and create the results I just explained above.
    This hasn't happened, therefore it hasn't worked.

     

    All you can do now is study the subsidy mix via both fiscal and monetary policy, and position yourself for the inflation in the asset classes those subsidy mixes create or destroy, that is if your objective is to time the market. Your other alternative is to wait for a pull back in equities markets, and look for some deep value equities that pay decent dividends and be ready to ride the dips and the peaks.

     

    For now though based on what BB has said in the minutes and QA before Congress, he seems to be in a holding pattern that he will only leave should "something" happen. I think the "something" he is most concerned with based on what he has said is a pull back in housing.
    25 Jul 2012, 10:11 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    When I said it "worked"...I meant he stopped the devastation. The mkt. is back from 6000 to 12-13000. So we agree on the "wealth effect"...but even that was a positive.

     

    Financial institutions are still in business instead of bankrupt with runs on banks avoided like in the '30's.

     

    I disagree with him on housing. It needs to be stable & positive, but more consumer debt is not the answer. Neither is it a long term fix on jobs. It does help, but not the total answer. There is too much focus on consumer spending with debt for what ever reason.
    Our economy now and in the future needs to be much more diverse and jobs widespread not dependent on any one industry.

     

    BTW..housing numbers were off this month, they just came out. He already knew that is why they are talking easing quicker now. He has been content, but that is about to end.
    25 Jul 2012, 10:39 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    "I meant he stopped the devastation."

     

    It all depends on how you are looking at "worked" with regards to your investment decisions, but "worked" meaning you stopped a disastor is rather specious. There is really no way to prove such a claim, and to have such an austere expectation of what gov policy can do is a poor foundation on which to build a society's standard of living.

     

    The ironic thing, is BB was part of the mechanism that created the circumstances for the "devastation". So in some regards he is a little like an abortionist that believes he should be considered a hero for performing free abortions for the people he has raped.

     

    It is funny that gov is always claiming how they can prevent the mistakes of markets, but when they create results that are far worse, then suddenly their standard moves from "we can be better" to "you can't blame us because we helped avert the disaster we almost caused". The excuses really start to fly. "Its not my fault. Its the previous guy's fault. Its the weather. Its the earthquakes. Its the local govs. Its Europe, etc, etc. Success shows results. It doesn't need to make excuses. So if you campaign as a god that is going to fix everything, don't be surprised when people expect miracles.

     

    In this scenario is the root of how you learn to protect yourself (to a degree) from their bungling. Granted we would all have a much higher standard of living if they didn't bungle things like a central bank, but their bungling is inevitable. Listen to Obama's rhetoric on taxation. Its clear he doesn't understand how our monetary system works. His rhetoric is more indicative of an understanding that is derived from a gold standard perspective. So, this indicates he is more likely to push for recessionary policies because of his lack of understanding.

     

    BB seems to understand a bit more, but he is still limited by his role. All he can do is extend credit, but it is up to fiscal policy to have a business plan that generates a return for that credit. The best plan is to let your best players run the game. The best players are not people in gov. People in gov are price blind. This means they don't react until the coercion they are employing is offset by private coercion. Thus bad policy goes on for so long, that it takes an electoral uprising or even violent revolt to get the bad investments to stop. So people can suffer a long time until the political class is made to suffer the same as the people are suffering. This is not a system you want.

     

    You are right about his take on housing, but it doesn't appear bad enough to suggest yet that the slight upward trend is going to be pulled back down. So he may be content a while longer. My guess right now is probably through the end of the year.

     

    I realize everyone has an ideology, but an ideology that is not consistent with reality will not serve you well. In the end, an economy is based on its productive capacity. That relys on how price sensitive it is. In other words the more sensitive the populace is to learning from their mistakes with regards to productivity, the more productive they will be. Price sensitivity depends on voluntary cooperation. Gov power is based on coercion. As such, gov is price blind. This makes gov the absolute worst entity in society to manage the economy, because the economy is totally dependent on price sensitivity.

     

    So when you see a gov interferring in price sensitive transactions with its price blindness, the only outcome is wealth transfer. This means asset inflation for specific asset classes and deflation for others. It means the rich get richer and the poor get poorer, just as we see in the current environment. If you learn to recognize these patterns, you can find ways to have some of that wealth transferred your way, but only if you learn to adopt an ideology that is based on reality.
    25 Jul 2012, 11:20 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Wonderful comment, jhooper. I would quibble only with this: That adopting an idiology to match the reality you describe in that last paragraph is not essential for wringing positive results for yourself in the wealth transfer orgy - but adopting a methodology which conforms to this reality probably is.

     

    My libertarian ideology is very solid, but I bend with the inevitable reality that I do not live in a libertarian world when it comes to methodology.
    25 Jul 2012, 11:28 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    Fair enough. That is probably a better way to express it. My ideology preference is one of a coercion free world, but we do not live in such a world. If people are going to be foolish enough to vote for a system that allows for wealth transfer via gov theft, then even though I warn them of the dangers of what they are doing, I still can find ways to protect myself.
    25 Jul 2012, 11:39 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    Sold 1/2 of my C stake...gonna ride the other half for a few minutes to days.
    Booked 1-2% gain on what I sold.
    25 Jul 2012, 09:36 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Even Jon Stewart blasts ABC over their attempt to slur tea party during the Colorado theater killing coverage.

     

    http://bit.ly/MWmCJ6
    25 Jul 2012, 09:55 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    dg..I do not like the politics of either side even though I strongly defend certain things.
    My point is..Expect this more and more not only thru Nov. but for the next 2 years.
    The House has way overplayed it's hand and will either change or suffer.
    This is not just me, CEO's are on them now very hard. The corps are people now, and they will force change / compromise or they will take them down.
    25 Jul 2012, 09:58 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Disagree somewhat. Corps are very limited in the number of votes they have. None actually. They can play the union game and try to influence their employees but I doubt that will have much effect.

     

    Unless they select the layoffs by the bumper stickers in the parking lot. Of course that will only speed up the use of magnetic bumper stickers. Remove prior to work.

     

    I also do not think the house has over played any more than the Senate. However most folks are not paying much attention. That would required getting off the couch and putting the remote down. Things have not gotten that painful yet. We are a ways off still.

     

    We will know we are close when Bankers and Politicians start screaming and pointing fingers at each other in an attempt to save thier necks....yet folks want both...PIKED....from wall street to Washington.
    25 Jul 2012, 10:16 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    dg...corps will defeat them with money thru Super-PACS. Tons of it. Enough to drown their message and to "hype" whoever runs against them.

     

    Not counting leaking some of the questionable "perks" they have given them. Even down to misinformation thru Super Pac ads. You cross these guys and they destroy you.

     

    Follow the money and you probably will see the winner.
    25 Jul 2012, 10:41 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    LT money counts to a point. After that the message is more important. As long as you have enough money to get your message out they can pile millions against you and it could all be wasted.

     

    The 'D' idiots will still vote D and the R idiots will still vote R. Your money will make no difference to them what so ever. The independents is where it is at and they are not easily fooled as evidenced by their voting swings. You can only fool them once.

     

    The sheeple on the other hand hardly ever vote but are easily bought and fooled but again they hardly ever vote.
    25 Jul 2012, 11:05 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Hey LT, Here is one where we all can agree that the money can make a difference in the voting. LOL

     

    http://fxn.ws/Nv2Idc
    25 Jul 2012, 01:23 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1919) | Send Message
     
    Good conversation guys. Corporations, money, super-pacs, none of them compare to the new power of the media both online and on TV. I have seen selective storytelling hit its most egregious point the past couple years. It is no longer an effort to report the biggest story first it is an effort to create the biggest story that fits their ideaology -- news and media has always informed but now people get their information through biased commentary instead of pure reportage. Good journalism is dead and that is what scares me the most these days.
    25 Jul 2012, 02:33 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    When one can no longer differentiate between "news" and "opinion" from any news source, its time to discount that source, no matter who or what it is. The trend is toward much more of this, mixing news and opinion to make the whole more "entertaining".

     

    To the extent that viewers support this change and reward them with higher ratings, we are also to blame.

     

    Those who bluntly identify themselves as "commentators" and admonish their viewers to treat what they present as "opinion" are being, at the least, honest to that extent. Some of the more outspoken media operatives do this, and I view them with some respect, despite whatever differences I might have with their particular point of view...

     

    What has become difficult is finding what should be their counterpart located at the polar opposite extreme, ie, the pure reporter of news, particularly those who identify themselves as such and who refrain from editorializing as well.
    25 Jul 2012, 02:45 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    I also blame the producers. If news is going too good, they always bring in Dr. Doom or Meredith Whitney.

     

    If it's going too bad, they bring in bulls like Cramer.
    25 Jul 2012, 02:51 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    You are so right there Maya. They have to have controversy on EACH AND EVERY NEWS PIECE.

     

    Fox news calls it fair and balanced and everyone else doesn't even bother trying to cover it up.
    25 Jul 2012, 03:13 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1919) | Send Message
     
    Brett Baier, Chris Wallace, and Smith are about it. Fox at least tells you "O'reilly with *opinion* and analysis is on next."

     

    The other stations do put forth effort to make it look like good old reporting with a real serious news anchor only to be sly manipulators of reality.
    25 Jul 2012, 03:23 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    I have found that when it comes to cable/tv news, "they all do it". Its a mishmash designed to be entertaining, and the fact that it is inevitably also deceptive is just ignored.

     

    Its to the point where I just treat it ALL (and that certainly includes CNBC) as "opinion" and take time to verify any actual news which might be important to me.
    25 Jul 2012, 03:27 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    "they all do it" is very correct....and the worst part is if someone disagrees with the bias & slant they want portrayed the go to a commercial or cut them off and won't let them talk...and in a few seconds you never see them again.
    25 Jul 2012, 05:57 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    Sold the C stake down to 100 shares...booked a net of 2.5%.

     

    I don't trust this rally.
    25 Jul 2012, 10:01 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Home sales plunge.

     

    http://bit.ly/OmHOJz

     

    Has anyone else see this. From Bob123

     

    http://bit.ly/OeYsfY
    25 Jul 2012, 10:38 AM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    Guns: I can't come up with the gall darn link, but Zillow is stating that housing went up in total value, across the board, all over the US of A, by .2% last quarter. First time in MANY quarters!

     

    Case Shiller is and has been stating existing housing pricing has been on the upswing in some of the places like Phoenix and Naples for many months now.

     

    Unless the sh$t hits the fan again, US housing has bottomed.

     

    I'm reading that some outfits are buying US properties up by the 1000 here, 1000 there-type investments.

     

    Another "cooler" conspiracy theory could be about who is buying these properties.

     

    About two years ago, I, or someone else, put up a fabulous link about how this could be done, was being done, and now, is being done.
    26 Jul 2012, 04:32 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    I saw the report and it indicated that prices had stabalized (settled on the bottom). I guess the move up was minimal. If volumn continues to go down the bottom may turn out to just be a shelf and we slide on over the edge and continue down some more.

     

    I have no expertise in this area. I was just spreading the bad news as I found it. I know that NAR continues to be wrong just like Cramer for about 2 years or better. I think we need some more data points AND we need to see construction picking up or its just a shuffle of current excess inventory from one to another.

     

    I really would like to know how much inventory the banks are holding, how much inventory is waiting forclosure (folks not paying), and how many baby boomers are waiting to sell and move to condos. Where ever bottom is I think we are going to hang out there for a good while with every move up followed by more inventory hitting the market.

     

    Just ideas I get from sooooo many articles with most of them wrong so far.
    26 Jul 2012, 04:49 AM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    Guns, it's a good conversation to have. Housing data is way more important to me from an investing perspective than unemployment data.
    26 Jul 2012, 05:03 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Yep I am glad I do not work in the housing industry.

     

    Change of subject here is some info on the Cancers that appear to be popping up in the children of Fukushima.

     

    http://bit.ly/NwgeNB
    26 Jul 2012, 05:13 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    Sandy Weil says "Break up the big banks" ... I can't believe it. I bet he just made some very big enemies.
    http://bit.ly/NuPDAu
    25 Jul 2012, 10:48 AM Reply Like
  • Joseph L. Shaefer
    , contributor
    Comments (1511) | Send Message
     
    Sour Grapes Report:

     

    Sandy Weill just misses being in the limelight. No single individual did more to destroy Glass Steagall or profit more from its destruction. He kept the pen Clinton used to sign the deal in a frame on his office wall as a testament to what he could accomplish with $100 million of his shareholders' money to pay for the feathering of his own nest. And now that he got his, we wants to lecture the rest of us on the error of our ways?

     

    Spare me. At it's best, that's like the quote I reproduced from Greenspan in my latest article, saying to Congress, “I really didn’t get it until very late.” Oh, well, what's a couple trillion in damage between friends...
    25 Jul 2012, 11:02 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    "Sour Grapes Report:

     

    Sandy Weill just misses being in the limelight. No single individual did more to destroy Glass Steagall or profit more from its destruction."

     

    No disagreement with the opinion expressed, but also no disagreement with restoration of Glass-Steagall separation of commercial and investment banking now espoused by Weill.
    25 Jul 2012, 12:08 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    Another article about how gold could spike due to obtaining a Tier 1 rating:

     

    http://bit.ly/Nv253j
    25 Jul 2012, 01:15 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5977) | Send Message
     
    87 handle on oil.
    25 Jul 2012, 01:34 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    Sold NLY today. All these bonds and preferreds getting called will make thier operating leverage go way up. Great yield, but it's coming down fast.

     

    Thank you Annaly Capital for letting me "rent" your stock. I made a nice little chunk.

     

    Now looking/lurking at LYSCF, EEP.

     

    Also, once again, my Wells broker reiterated that the Bush Tax cuts will be extended al least six months.
    25 Jul 2012, 04:02 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    "Also, once again, my Wells broker reiterated that the Bush Tax cuts will be extended al least six months."

     

    :-) Broadcast and "news" media have no monopoly on opinion and 'spin'.
    25 Jul 2012, 07:11 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    D-inv: Three separate politicians, two dems, one republican, have all told my broker exactly the same thing. The Bush tax cuts will be extended. That's up two politicians from the last time I spoke with my broker, and wrote about it here in QC; same message delivered.

     

    It's just more of what we're talking about upstairs in this thread.

     

    The media producers will hype Fiscal Cliff for ratings all they can, as long as they can. Surely, I will be reiterating this point again as time passes, and will also (hopefully) have some dry powder to throw at the relief rally when this is formally announced.
    25 Jul 2012, 07:19 PM Reply Like
  • robert.b.ferguson
    , contributor
    Comments (10802) | Send Message
     
    I don't think there was any real doubt as to the current tax policy being extended until after the election. Possibly for a full year. Those much ballyhooed draconian cuts aren't likely to happen either. Now for negotiation news. The companies final, final no really this is it offer was resoundingly rejected by the membership. Company officials have been advised that a strike is now immanent. They now have five days in which to meet the conditions established by the membership or the barbarians will be at the gates. I find it very odd that having created this monster the company seems intent on taking it out and playing with it. There is an old redneck saying that you can only poke a big dog so many times before it bites you. I think it has been poked once to often in this case. I will post up anything new as this plays out. Needless to say my investment activity will be on hold for awhile.
    25 Jul 2012, 09:44 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    "I don't think there was any real doubt as to the current tax policy being extended until after the election."

     

    :-) Now THAT is what some might call a save bet.
    25 Jul 2012, 10:26 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Something to jolt your blood this morning. I have a hard time believing the EPA will allow this so I have some skepticism about it but damn sure would raise food prices was my first thought, but if demand goes down cuz everyone is dead then it might not have the impact one would at first consider.

     

    http://bit.ly/OJbVt3
    26 Jul 2012, 04:54 AM Reply Like
  • robert.b.ferguson
    , contributor
    Comments (10802) | Send Message
     
    Double, Guns: Greetings. If true that has got to be one of the dumbest ideas ever!
    26 Jul 2012, 10:33 AM Reply Like
  • siliconhillbilly
    , contributor
    Comments (2150) | Send Message
     
    Guys, relax!

     

    The story is a typical green-scare piece that only tells a fraction of the truth and adds tons of scary speculation. Green BS, in other words.

     

    First, it's a small scale experiment to see if anything happens, bad or good.

     

    Second, There were once far more sulfate particles at high altitudes because of burning high sulfur coal. But if the coal sulfate particles get to high altitude, they will to be much more dense at lower altitudes. It's the low altitude sulfates that are defined as pollution. This idea is to inject them at 80k feet. I suppose some will drift down but I don't know the fraction. Which is one of the reasons for the experiment. I doubt they will be detectable near-ground without sophisticated instruments.

     

    I want to see the results of the experiment. We need more "weapons" in the "reduce insolation" quiver in case we actually need to lower global temperatures.

     

    BTW, volcanic eruptions in the past have inserted VASTLY more sulfates into the upper atmosphere. They do go away after a while.
    26 Jul 2012, 01:49 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    " volcanic eruptions in the past have inserted VASTLY more sulfates into the upper atmosphere. They do go away after a while."

     

    :-) I think that is due to something known as gravity which pulls them back to lower altitudes where they will be they "are defined as pollution". :-) But, there will be no question as whether those descending sulfides from the balloon release are anthropogenic in origin.
    26 Jul 2012, 04:05 PM Reply Like
  • siliconhillbilly
    , contributor
    Comments (2150) | Send Message
     
    D-inv: "But, there will be no question as whether those descending sulfides from the balloon release are anthropogenic in origin." Too true.
    At least, I can hope they have tagged the experimental sulfur so it can be identified.

     

    At least some of the lower altitude sulfur compounds are oxidized and absorbed in water. They rain out as sulfuric acid, aka acid rain.

     

    But water is scarce at 80k feet. Too cold. Not my field of expertise. Whatever reflects the sunlight up there is not liquid water drops.
    26 Jul 2012, 04:13 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    For the coal investors Mark Anthony did an article this morning that caught my eye.

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...
    26 Jul 2012, 05:54 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    looking at the global incident map and I was really surprised to see the number of forest fires out west. Who makes shovels and pick axes.

     

    http://bit.ly/PLSjZV
    26 Jul 2012, 06:17 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    This was on the WallStreet Breakfast this morning. You all know me. I just could not resist.

     

    "Iranian nuclear program struck by thunder. The latest cyber-attack on Iran's nuclear program has apparently taken a musical-turn, with a computer worm not only shutting down the "automation network" at the Natanz and Fordo facilities, but also prompting some of the computers to play the AC/DC song "Thunderstruck" at full volume in the middle of the night."

     

    I had to post this clip for the Iranians and let them know "Yea it could get this bad".

     

    http://bit.ly/LQRgCJ
    26 Jul 2012, 07:43 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Somewhere there is a hacker with a fantastic sense of timing, an obvious sense of target, a great sense of humor...

     

    And fantastic taste in music.

     

    "Thunder..."
    26 Jul 2012, 09:10 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Market soaring on.....Draghis Remarks?

     

    Pathetic.

     

    http://bit.ly/MKiaOZ

     

    Waiting job numbers.......
    26 Jul 2012, 07:53 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    Sold 80% of Sprint in pre-market...>10% gain. Keeping 1000 shares that is all on the house.
    26 Jul 2012, 08:22 AM Reply Like
  • Mercy Jimenez
    , contributor
    Comments (2030) | Send Message
     
    Nice play LT! Selling on the Draghi news is definitely in order.
    26 Jul 2012, 08:33 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    Thanks MJ, I am not bragging, but I am proud of it as this has been the best trading week for me in a very long time.

     

    I need to make one more sale today on NVAX ... and then I am back to cash except the stock cleared that I will keep on house money.
    26 Jul 2012, 08:36 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Job numbers should add to surge. On just face value. Jobless claims plunge by 35,000.
    26 Jul 2012, 08:33 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    I may be wrong, but the global fed's are controlling the markets with words instead of actions for now.

     

    I wonder if this is a sign of strength and regaining power?

     

    or just more BS ?
    26 Jul 2012, 09:03 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    It simply extends the periods between printing sessions. I have no idea when the next printing will be but if we have 28 more years of borrowing that's a lot of printing.

     

    Some how I don't think it will last that long.
    26 Jul 2012, 09:10 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    Seems like classic jawboning. It's part of the quasi-fraud gov agencies must engage in. Imagine if BB or Draghi came out and said, "Nope, nothing we can do. Its all hopeless." That's basically saying they are powerless (with regards to growing an economy), and that could cause some panic (I would say, they are finally facing reality). They can never do this. For example, in all the years the Fed has been studying the economy, they have never predicted a recession. Of course, there have been recessions, but having a gov entity predict one would probably become a self fulfilling prophecy. This means they will always be inclined to talk about what they can do rather than actually doing something. Actual actions and results can be more readily scrutinized than just talking about what can be done.

     

    My sense of things right now is that the situation in Europe provides the QE effect that BB wants, thus taking the pressure off of him to do anything. The capital flight from Europe is supplanting what the Fed would be doing, if that capital flight did not exist. I contend the one thing that would really make BB nervous is problems in housing because that makes BB think unemployment is going to go up. I can see the Fed sitting on the fence through December.
    26 Jul 2012, 09:27 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    EU Ping, FED Pong. I think they are playing us.
    26 Jul 2012, 10:37 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    "I can see the Fed sitting on the fence through December."

     

    I think he wants to wait as long as he can too, I expect it before Dec, but who knows. Not until he as to.
    26 Jul 2012, 09:47 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    From an email blurb I get. This is the sort of thing that makes me think this gets slowly dragged out till December, unless someone says something that makes me think otherwise. I make money when BB does QE, so I watch for signs of it closely. If someone else can make a better prediction than me, then I really value those comments.

     

    "If there’s an opposite to the sweet spot, this GDP report hit it, at least as far as the markets are concerned. Growth of 1.5% is lousy, but not lousy enough to significantly alter the Fed’s understanding of current conditions or the outlook for future growth. As a result, the FOMC next week has pretty much the same information to work with as yesterday. Another month of weakness has accumulated since the June 20 meeting, but Bernanke said he wanted several months. Looks like the verdict on QE3 will have to wait until September unless the Chairman can change a few minds."
    27 Jul 2012, 10:36 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    "... Growth of 1.5% is lousy, but not lousy enough to significantly alter the Fed’s understanding of current conditions or the outlook for future growth. As a result, the FOMC next week has pretty much the same information to work with as yesterday. Another month of weakness has accumulated since the June 20 meeting, but Bernanke said he wanted several months. Looks like the verdict on QE3 will have to wait until September unless the Chairman can change a few minds."

     

    :-) I don't presume to have a better prediction than your own, just one that is different. A QE3 is not a slam dunk and just a question of time IMO. The Fed Governors now know that ECB is easing and likely to ease more if risk of Euro zone collapse is perceived as high and rising. And, once U.S. elections are out of the way I believe political agreement on some kind of fiscal package will avert the prospective "fiscal cliff" looming at year end. And, I expect higher revenues will be included in any package that does pass.
    27 Jul 2012, 12:37 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    That's a good take on the situation. I am in agreement that with growth at 1.5-2% and the market behaving...there is no QE-3 yet.

     

    The fiscal cliff will be averted and a revenue increase will be in the deal. Like it or not, neither side wants the cuts to kick in. This gives the dem's leverage...they just are not strong enough to take advantage of it.
    The deal could happen before the election & kick in Jan.1 midnight.

     

    Whatever is being worked on in the EZ is definitely helping.
    27 Jul 2012, 01:46 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    "The fiscal cliff will be averted and a revenue increase will be in the deal. Like it or not, neither side wants the cuts to kick in. This gives the dem's leverage...they just are not strong enough to take advantage of it."

     

    When I suggest higher revenues I by no means intend to suggest 1) there will be no expenditures cuts in the mix (there will be or there will be no deal) or 2) that tax rate increases will be adopted. I look for expenditure reductions through paring of future growth in entitlement outlays, SOME immediate program budget cuts, some tax credit terminations (and hence revenue gains), and some reductions in allowable tax deductions. SOME Democrats and Republicans alike recognize that recent most reductions in federal deficit levels are in large measure a consequence of Fed ZIRP and sustained reductions in public debt are well advised.
    28 Jul 2012, 03:31 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    Sold 1/3 of NVAX @ 2.09 for 23% gain. Not sure what to do with the balance yet.
    I think it's a winner, but I have a lack of trust in anything...I only like another 1000 share sale of NVAX to be back to cash, profits for the week are held in shares of the companies I traded. Mostly on house money.
    26 Jul 2012, 09:55 AM Reply Like
  • DigDeep
    , contributor
    Comments (2357) | Send Message
     
    As you said (i think it was you) hoop, BB has mentioned a number of times that fiscal action is the next/right step. The new era of Fed transparency has me believing him for his word - for now. W/out fiscal action, sp 900-1100 is probably on the only real trigger for BB QE3.

     

    Twist wasn't altered (or no new QE3) at the Oct 2011 lows while the EU juiced w/ LTRO.

     

    Wonder at what point CB's realize productivity and purchasing power hasn't benefited from their attempts... Reversion to the mean (sustainable debt levels), isn't something they can abate IMO.
    26 Jul 2012, 11:13 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    Yeah, good point. The Fed after all (in theory mind you) is just a bank. A bank extends credit. Credit allows for time. Time for what? Time to come up with a plan to be more productive. BB has issued all sorts of time to be productive, now it is up the the fiscal guys in Congress to do that. So they have a choice. Do we want price blind gov doing the planning to find ways to be more productive, or do we want price sensitive markets that rely on voluntary cooperation to do the planning?

     

    If you see gov deciding to do the planning, then get ready for more wealth transfer, asset inflation, and then more recessionary pressures. If you see gov being honest and admitting they can't plan better than the price sensitive, then get ready for vibrant economic growth. Then you start to pick winners based on which ones can create products that are the best at solving people's problems, instead of which ones are the most politically connected and can use gov guns to have wealth transfered to them from the general populace.

     

    In the meantime all we have now is liquidity "sloshing" from risk-on to risk-off based on the latest jawboning. This won't change until larger macro-economic policies change one way or the other.
    26 Jul 2012, 11:27 AM Reply Like
  • Economic Analyst
    , contributor
    Comments (2464) | Send Message
     
    "Then you start to pick winners based on which , instead of which ones are the most politically connected and can use gov guns to have wealth transfered to them from the general populace."

     

    Until then continue to pick winners based on which ones are the most politically connected and can use gov guns to have wealth transfered to them from the general populace instead of the ones who can create products that are the best at solving people's problems.

     

    Let me know when the rules change, in the meantime RO/RO/RO yer boat...
    27 Jul 2012, 11:16 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    I won't have to. You will know when the rules change. Just look for the end to austerity.
    27 Jul 2012, 12:08 PM Reply Like
  • optionsgirl
    , contributor
    Comments (5061) | Send Message
     
    DG, here is a translation of those shadow inventory numbers:
    23.7% OF mortgages are underwater, down from 25%
    http://bit.ly/Qlaqbu

     

    90% of foreclosed homes are off the market:
    http://aol.it/NL92KT-

     

    Per Naked Capitalism, that translates to 39,000 homes for sale, out of foreclosed inventory of an estimated 390,000 homes. If they were all on the market simultaneously, that is enough to trigger a recession.
    Estimate is 300K new foreclosed properties per year for the next three years.
    <it is very likely that about 1 million REO properties will be disposed of by the GSEs over the next 2-3 years. Over the last 3 years, they have disposed of about 833,216 REOs.>

     

    Read more at http://bit.ly/NL9p80
    http://bit.ly/Qlarfm
    26 Jul 2012, 11:39 AM Reply Like
  • optionsgirl
    , contributor
    Comments (5061) | Send Message
     
    If the AOL article disappears, here it is as a reprint:
    http://bit.ly/Om9MHh
    26 Jul 2012, 12:33 PM Reply Like
  • Mercy Jimenez
    , contributor
    Comments (2030) | Send Message
     
    OG, completely agree with your assessment for a market I know all too well. Folks seem to forget that the long protracted Robo-Signing negotiations placed an artificial "hold" on foreclosures. Now that the settlement is in -- I expect those holds to be unleashed into the market place and into large investor rental funds.

     

    This momentum has already started with more than half of US metros starting to see increased foreclosures:

     

    "Foreclosure activity in the first half of 2012 picked up in 125 of the 212 U.S. metros surveyed by RealtyTrac in the research firm's latest Foreclosure Market Report ... Markets with increasing foreclosure starts will likely see more distressed inventory for sale in the form of short sales and bank-owned properties in the second half of the year."
    http://bit.ly/QKNfGl

     

    IMHO we are far from a bottom and the "tight inventories" were artificially created. And lest we forget -- mortgage delinquencies are still running about 7%.
    mj
    26 Jul 2012, 01:44 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    My take is that the mortgage delinquency rate was a consequence of the freeze in foreclosures, rather than an indication of an ongoing flow. Unfreeze the foreclosures, and the delinquencies will turn into foreclosures, as they should...

     

    This should be good for another quarter point of growth off the economy, though.
    26 Jul 2012, 02:21 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Thank you OG, I figured it would be bad numbers. I don't think we are over this problem yet. Too many homes to come to market and not many with the down payment or credit score to purchase. That will add a lot of misery to this equation too.
    26 Jul 2012, 06:53 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17796) | Send Message
     
    Occasionally some folks have that we might have become a bit bearish here.

     

    Maybe this sort of stuff has something to do with it?

     

    Ignore the (likely?) SA-supplied title - they like to juice their "sales". There's a good summary of some recent readings within the article.

     

    "Recession Watch: 3 More Signals 'Flash' Red"

     

    He also touches on the QE effects a small bit.

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...

     

    HardToLove
    26 Jul 2012, 06:02 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17796) | Send Message
     
    Dr. Duru touches on some things he things will drive the Fed to early weakening of the dollar (again)?

     

    "By Closing Above Its 'QE2 Reference Price', Dollar Increases Pressure On Fed".

     

    The thing I think is quite significant, since if correct it forces down sales and profits for U.S.-based companies, is: "The strong dollar is applying increasing pressure on the financial results of companies with business overseas. I am noting in the earnings reports of several companies that a strong dollar has become a small burden on sales, revenues, and/or profits".

     

    He gives a few examples and specific effects as well.

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...

     

    If he's right, the Fed will have little choice but to act, regardless of the U.S. economy or elections, because his whole house of cards is based on asset-price inflation. If companies keep reducing estimates of revenue (reduced sales *and* fewer dollars from those sales remaining) and profits (multi-nationals with production local to customers will be less affected) we can ship more jobs "over there" to offset dollar strength) or H.B. Bernanke can "rescue" the important folks, regardless of the effects on us peons, by weakening the dollar some more.

     

    If Duru is right, the equities market will continue to improve, in nominal terms of course, while the country and individuals suffer from it.

     

    I guess for the innocents there is no relief and it's back to PMs and commodities again *before* the crowd gets there again. Is it too late already?

     

    HardToLove
    26 Jul 2012, 06:24 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Duru is one I follow. Don't always agree with him, but this time it seems pretty obvious.

     

    One thing I keep expecting the Fed to do, particularly since the 2Bigs are stronger now: Cut the interest it pays on reserve deposits.

     

    The pressure for the Fed to help out the zombie Freddie/Fannie pair is always there. Swapping toxic leavings from the F/F pocket to the Fed pocket with new money seems pretty idiotic, it doesn't solve anything, but it DOES take pressure off key powerbrokers in Washington, and will puff up the bloated Fed balance sheet some more. Money theorists will have a field day...

     

    (Saw Barnie on CNBC this afternoon, he was as inarticulate and deceptive as always. Looked bad, too.)
    26 Jul 2012, 06:39 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    TB: Yesterday, when I asked my broker what kind of stimulus he thought was coming, he said he didn't know, but said he would cut the interest paid on reserve deposits.

     

    Great minds think alike!

     

    Probably too practicle for the FED to figure out and implement.

     

    Frank interview made me howl and puke at the same time at how disgusting that conversation with Maria went. Pretty rare, if ever, have I seen her dip her head almost out of the picture frame, brush her hair back, take a deep breath, lift her head back up, and smile, knowing Frank was sidestepping and completely out of control.

     

    One of the worst, most combative interviews with any politcian I have ever seen.
    26 Jul 2012, 06:58 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    'Saw Barnie on CNBC this afternoon"

     

    You poor bastard. Are your eyes OK.
    26 Jul 2012, 07:12 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    We turtles have nictitating membranes...

     

    Otherwise I'd probably have to dig them out with a spoon.
    26 Jul 2012, 07:23 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17796) | Send Message
     
    We (well, at least I know I did), in these QCs, suggested this a year or two back. I guess the banksters couldn't tolerate a non-risk-free interest rate spread though.

     

    HardToLove
    26 Jul 2012, 07:34 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    you are so right...they have had it made, and still wanted to gamble instead of banking. Free money, fed buys their junk and holds it till maturity and they still can't make it.
    The regionals have never had it better. Their business is growing, increased earnings off of interest income. I give you an example, I took a note the other day and it was 5.5% ... and they are paying .25

     

    Corps are no better, they are addicted to QE just like the banks and also are addicted to the gov't giving them free rides. As in Education, taxes. trade agreements, etc. They won't spend a dime to train a welder and are begging for them. The gov't will wind up spending a $200 billion on education to do it for them before it's over. They have 3 million job openings and won't fill them.
    26 Jul 2012, 07:59 PM Reply Like
  • robert.b.ferguson
    , contributor
    Comments (10802) | Send Message
     
    The House passed a measure to audit the FED. http://usat.ly/QfJN4Z It won't go anywhere in the Senate but should the Senate fall under Republican control next year it might actually happen. Where we go from there is any one's guess.
    31 Jul 2012, 11:08 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    It is also important to remember that the audit is not a financial one (that already happens), but a policy audit. Thus, if the Fed makes a rule that they won't buy anything from asset type A for example, then the policy audit would look to see if the Fed has anything from asset type A. Basically, it is a way to see if they are really doing what they say they are doing, or if Congress passes legislation that changes what the Fed does, is the Fed really changing its behaviour.

     

    http://bit.ly/OyGczO
    31 Jul 2012, 11:19 AM Reply Like
  • Jon Springer
    , contributor
    Comments (4160) | Send Message
     
    TB,

     

    Saw on the Axion blog that you've been buying Sandstorm lately. Two queries:
    - which Sandstorm?
    - what changed your mind on gold this past week? (I recall you thinking it might get down to the 1400s or even 1200s... I think)

     

    I'm generally just hanging on to what I've got in precious metals (CEF, PMPIX, EGDFF, UGL)... but Sandstorm performs darned well when gold revs up and its tempting to trade out some of those positions for a little more stormy performance.
    26 Jul 2012, 09:14 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Gold Sandstorm, SNDXF (I like the base metal version too, particularly the energy aspect, but I will be adding to that one at a later time under different situation). If I was Canadian I would also be adding SDXXF warrants (I hold a good number of these already, but trading is difficult for Americans, so I am just holding until I can make my outrageous multiple to sell).

     

    The likelihood that the new bank rules rating gold at 100% of market on the banker's books is what has me looking at the recent lows as "done", at least for now. (I have been touting the 1400's as a likely low, prior to the rule change, and 1200 as an ultimate low spike in the case of a short term "event").

     

    Sandstorm's avg cost of Gold is repeatedly in the low $300's, which offers a phenomenal long term prospect when production costs are shooting up (just read another analysis where $1200 is becoming the break even point for most producers). The streaming business model is thriving, imo.
    27 Jul 2012, 08:26 AM Reply Like
  • Jon Springer
    , contributor
    Comments (4160) | Send Message
     
    Thx. Very clear.
    27 Jul 2012, 09:26 PM Reply Like
  • Jon Springer
    , contributor
    Comments (4160) | Send Message
     
    Started buying some Sandstorm this morning - SSL in Canada as there was a $50 extra fee to trade SNDXF which made exchanging money and buying the shares locally cheaper on Fidelity.
    31 Jul 2012, 11:16 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Schwab has no extra exchange fees for most Canadian stocks (warrants is much more complicated).

     

    However, Schwab has high fees for Australian stocks.
    31 Jul 2012, 11:26 AM Reply Like
  • Jon Springer
    , contributor
    Comments (4160) | Send Message
     
    Never seen that fee before on a Canadian (or any other country) on Fidelity. Might be something new to encourage their international trading platform (and currency exchange)
    31 Jul 2012, 11:31 AM Reply Like
  • Mercy Jimenez
    , contributor
    Comments (2030) | Send Message
     
    Jon, the biggest factor I weigh in whether to pay the fee to buy on the foreign exchange or in the US -- is volume liquidity. In this volatile market I'm OK paying a premium for the privilege of getting out quick on the exchange with the most volume -- if market conditions warrant it -- or if the BOTs come running after me.

     

    The second biggest factor I weigh is whether I desire some USD diverisification in the foreign exchanges' currency. For dividend paying stocks -- this is also important if you want the dividends to stay in the foreign currency in which they were paid.
    mj
    31 Jul 2012, 11:32 AM Reply Like
  • Jon Springer
    , contributor
    Comments (4160) | Send Message
     
    Don't disagree Mercy. SSL (in Canada) has greater volume than SNDXF and the fee to trade it is lower on Fidelity. Easy choice.
    31 Jul 2012, 11:34 AM Reply Like
  • JeffLeach1986
    , contributor
    Comments (229) | Send Message
     
    I dont understand AMZN. They missed top line and bottom line but they are up 2 percent after hours. Trailing PE at 181. What am I not seeing that would explain this?
    26 Jul 2012, 11:21 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    I think your understanding perfectly. Its the invisible Magic hands your not seeing.
    27 Jul 2012, 05:31 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    In scary economies like this, some investors seek the safe haven of a monopoly... And Amazon is approaching that status in many markets, like book sales.
    27 Jul 2012, 08:28 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    TB your probably right but the numbers just are not supportive. I do not want to own the bankrupt monopoly.

     

    We are not there yet but I think you can see the point. This mohemouth is going to need a lot of revenue to feed it.
    27 Jul 2012, 10:11 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Don't get me wrong, I despise Amazon, wouldn't buy their stock on a bet.

     

    I wasn't aware they are bankrupt, though.
    27 Jul 2012, 10:20 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Not bankrupt. We are not there yet. But they will need a lot of revenue to feed itself and along will come a David and kill them through starvation.

     

    The internet is a new battle field. It is presently fielded by those titans who came first.

     

    We already have fallen titans. There will be more.
    27 Jul 2012, 10:24 AM Reply Like
  • siliconhillbilly
    , contributor
    Comments (2150) | Send Message
     
    guns, TB: I think it is simpler than that.

     

    The Boyz, via the mutual funds, are pumping up EVERYTHING that has decent volume in preparation for another haircut for the plebs. The "good news" from the usual rogues in the US and the EU is the excuse. I've noticed that even the hated tech stocks are inflating.

     

    If the Boyz can just lure the desperate interest and dividend income dependent folks into the stock market they can repeat the "pump 'em up and bleed 'em out" trick. Just once more before the economic direction signal (DOWN) rises up blatantly above the noise.

     

    IMO natch'
    28 Jul 2012, 02:16 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    Interesting assessment.
    http://reut.rs/OoihBw
    26 Jul 2012, 11:39 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4557) | Send Message
     
    >D-inv ... See, austerity doesn't work so well.
    26 Jul 2012, 11:44 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    :-) Drich, I think you missed the major difference in macro policies pursued by UK and US. Both pared spending, but UK both cut spending AND raised taxes markedly. US has not raised taxes but has curbed spending growth a bunch while allowing further deficit spending, (Tax reductions occurred through FICA withholding tax "holidays".)

     

    Austerity undertaken of free will preserves basic institutions for future! Austerity undertaken because no one will lend or give more to support continuing consumption beyond one's means is calamitous. The former is analogous with an auto slowing due to reduced fuel feed and the latter analogous to the same auto running out of fuel shortly before all the wheels fall off.
    27 Jul 2012, 12:22 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    US auto appears that it will slow when it hits the wall.
    27 Jul 2012, 05:34 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    An austerity of gov action that waste human labor always leads to prosperity.

     

    http://bit.ly/Ie2QVX

     

    Part of the reasons for Thomas Culpeper and Josiah Childs desire to have gov manipulate interest rates was their observation of the Dutch and their wealth with low interest rates. However, they failed to understand the cause and effect. It was not low interest rates that were low because of gov coercion, they were low because a lack of gov coercion led to high levels of productivity (in a country with very few natural resources) that created lots of capital. Additional capital is the real way to lower interest rates, because the supply of capital actually increases. When govs lower interest rates, they don't increase the supply of capital, they simply coerce people through coercion (legislation) to invest in banks when the people would prefer not to. No new wealth has been created. It has only been transferred (a fancy way of saying theft).

     

    http://bit.ly/MpUAEi

     

    http://bit.ly/PElaOT
    27 Jul 2012, 08:13 AM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5977) | Send Message
     
    The U.S. economy grew 1.5% in the second quarter.
    27 Jul 2012, 08:32 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Thanks FPA.

     

    I am thinking 1.2% in the current quarter.
    27 Jul 2012, 08:34 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    There will still be revisions.
    27 Jul 2012, 08:48 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    There is always that!!!

     

    Lately they are usually down. LOL
    27 Jul 2012, 10:13 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    OK, though I am the caretaker here, I rarely treat this as my personal blog sounding board...

     

    But I have had what might be an epiphany of sorts (or a mini stroke, but I hope not)...

     

    Here's the scenario I see unfolding, all triggered by the pending change in the treatment of gold as an asset class valued at market in the vaults of the central banks, large banks, broker/banks (like GS), and so on:

     

    We see a sector rotation out of weak sectors. This includes altenergy, once again failing to match hype despite liberal injections of taxpayer wealth and government hopium - strategic minerals which are both linked to the altenergy story, and uncertain due to the reaction to the Japanese nuclear disaster - Europe as a general theme - and selected industries already fading as the "recovery" unwinds...

     

    I have seen ample evidence of this occurring in the REE/Strategic Minerals sector, and HTL's tracking of Axion and the whales who have been selling (particularly BlackRock) lends more circumstantial evidence to the theory.

     

    But unlike the usual major rotation, the cash is being held, pending the identification of the destination...

     

    The timing with the gold valuation rules change makes me believe there is no coincidence here. One of two scenarios are about to play out:

     

    1. The money starts pouring into gold, particularly physical gold which is held in bank vaults and becomes critical to supporting their reserves, not to mention supporting floudering nation states like Italy, Spain, etc. Gold could exceed $2000/oz.

     

    2. Gold is attacked and prices spike downward. Exchanges alter their rules and a flood of margins are called. Massive supplies of gold are freed from the hands of the many and flow to the hands of the few... This will be a very brief spike, and the value of gold will surge back to levels similar to the peaks seen earlier in the year. Gold could also go over $2000 in this scenario, but would probably take longer to do so, and might not be able to accomplish that due to the severe damage done to the small traders and individuals who were forced to yield up their investments at fire sale prices for the benefit of the 2Bigs and da Boyz.

     

    Ironically, either scenario is likely to help stabilize Spain and Italy, and much of the Eurozone, though of course not Greece.

     

    NOTE: I am currently leaning toward Scenario #1, simply because I believe the situation in Europe is so dire they will not have the flexibility to wait out the spike to begin shoring up their balance sheets.
    27 Jul 2012, 10:56 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    I think the key is to whether the gov'ts and TBTF banks "HAVE to sell" gold to prop currency and fund banks... or ... in the best case scenario they count physical metals at market price and get to count it as capital at such price, then it is in their interest for it to go higher.
    I agree that is the best scenario, if they have to sell, it could be worth half.
    Good post TB.
    27 Jul 2012, 11:08 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Yes. If the rule change is pulled, that would signal that the plan is to force sales, particularly with Italy, but all the central banks (perhaps the IMF as well).

     

    That would see me reverting to my original position, $1400 gold soon, with a good chance of an engineered spike to the $1200 area to allow a chance for key players to buy cheap.

     

    Then the roller coaster shoots up, and I would be expecting a new announcement that they will be allowed to mark their gold to market after all.
    27 Jul 2012, 11:12 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2414) | Send Message
     
    Do you have references on this rule change, or suggested Google search terms?

     

    Estimate of timelines?

     

    If this were to happen, wouldn't selected European banks (calls?) be a bigger bank for the buck way to play?

     

    If so, who wants to suggest some of the best banks to play?

     

    And optionable (in the US) ones?

     

    Is there an ETF even vaguely related?
    27 Jul 2012, 11:39 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    http://bit.ly/Nv253j
    27 Jul 2012, 11:43 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    BTW, the link was put forward by MayaScribe, who initiated this particular conversation just a few posts above in this instablog.

     

    Timelines are compressed, imo, or should be. If this move is to be made to help the European banks with a new wrinkle in the Basel rules, it must occur in time to avoid further erosion in the positions of Spain and Italy. Beneath this top priority layer would be the big European banks most at risk, followed by the secondary players like the regional banks in Spain, the American 2Bigs, etc. Unfortunately there is the real risk (as I laid out in the various scenarios described above) that the timing will be manipulated in a very different fashion depending upon which of several methods are used.

     

    Personally I avoid the banks which would be involved in such a play like the plague, so I am not the one to suggest which would be the best, and of those, which call options would be timed best. The general thrust of this and earlier conversations was generally about precious metals, particularly gold, which many of the regular participants here invest in, including physical metal. Personally I prefer buying stock in streaming companies and miners to ETFs, so again I will let those who prefer ETFs address that question. It would seem to me that ANY of the gold ETFs would gain from a general change like this, ultimately.

     

    I have been accumulating Sandstorm (http://bit.ly/NMxR9a) as my primary move to capitalize on this potential change in the precious metals landscape. I am also long a lot of microcap gold/silver miners, though with minor holdings in each.
    27 Jul 2012, 12:51 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    Trip: Other than some coins stashed in my lockbox, I have been completely out of gold for over a year, basically lost track of all the miners I track. I like Sandstorm, but I'm leaning toward picking up some Goldfields, which is giving a 5% yield, as my first postiton back into gold. It bottomed a couple of weeks ago, and is trending back up, but still remains about 40% off it's 52 week high.

     

    I was amazed that my broker, who is as informed as anyone I know, didn't know about this Basel 3 augmented potential announcement of gold becoming as Tier 1 asset.

     

    Hopefully, Monday will continue the string of down Mondays, running at 8 in a row. I will be buying some GFI, then.

     

    I haven't obtained John Lounsbury's permission but, here's what he had to say about gold, just yesterday. What follows is our correspondence:

     

    Basel III
    Between Mayascribe , John Lounsbury (2)
    Mayascribe July 26 at 12:16amJohn,

     

    Have you been following the development of how gold may soon be considered a Tier 1 investment?

     

    MSM has not yet caught wind, but I'm thinking this new regulation, if it does go global, could potentially skyrocket gold.

     

    Here's one of the better, more abbreviated links I have read that discusses what may happen (scroll down a little bit):

     

    http://bit.ly/NMFHQe.../

     

    Best!

     

    Bill

     

    John Lounsbury July 26 at 11:08pm

     

    Bill - - -

     

    Yes, I have seen this discussed. Your link is a good summary.

     

    I have two thoughts:

     

    1. A major reinforcing factor that turned the 1929-30 recession into the Greatr Depression was the hoarding of gold. It was done even at the country level. France and the U.S. kept stockpiling gold and not monetizing it. By 1931 the U.S. (Federal Reserve) started to reverse the lack of monetization but did so too slowly to really have an impact. France simply took their gold with them as they sank to the bottom. See: econintersect.com/word... Banks could simply find it a real money maker to load up on gold and use the appreciation created by the greater demand as a primary form of profit (balance sheet profit) for a number of quarters.

     

    2. If gold does charge ahead by 3, 4, 5x (or more) over the next 1-2 years and the banks have monetized even a little of that appreciation, when the bubble eventually bursts there would be a general deflationary swing and , with all assets, not just gold deflating at a high rate of speed, the still shaky banking sector could have a collapse that would make 2008 look like merely a practice run.

     

    So I think the prospects for gold are probably pretty good over the next year or two, but a high alert level will be needed to avoid a crushing reversal if a bubble deflates. This risk is even higher if the banking system is involved in bidding the gold up because that is the ultimate leaning tower of leverage.

     

    So make some money while relaxing at the pool beside the sea but keep your track shoes on and laced up in case of a tsunami.

     

    John

     

    ####

     

    Hope this helps with your "sounding board!"
    27 Jul 2012, 02:46 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Tell John I said "Hi". If I ever get up to Matthews NC for a show, I'll shoot him a headsup...

     

    My thoughts are that Gold was not particularly hoarded in the US (where it was after all legal currency) until the rumors started to fly that the government intended to outlaw private ownership. At first discounted as an "absurd notion" we all know it ultimately proved to be the case...

     

    THEN hoarding (by the government), preceded by confiscation, did indeed take place, in no uncertain terms. I have often wondered how things might have turned out had that not happened...

     

    I don't see the increased valuation (increased to market price, that is) by Basel for the banks will constitute "hoarding" of the same stripe. Exchanges of gold between banks is a formal dance which occurs with some frequency. And of course the market in trading gold in various forms is quite well populated with private individuals nowadays...

     

    I don't see gold shooting up to the stratosphere as a result of this (as I indicated in my commentary, I can see $2000 short term, though). Medium term (over the next year or two) I could see it over $3000, though a double from current prices is certainly possible. What we may see is a very slow upward creep in the value of gold, and less volatility rather than more.

     

    As with all such regulatory changes, however, the devil is in the details - and in what the banks do with whatever newfound stability comes from having a stronger balance sheet. Like many regulatory ideas, even those which in and of themselves are "good" will fail if overarching issues are not addressed as well. This could end up being nothing more than a bandaid applied to a mortal wound...

     

    Good advice as always. Thanks to both of you.
    27 Jul 2012, 03:07 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    I also want to add I believe commercial banks don't own a lot of gold. Why would a bank want to buy gold, and that asset is then immediately discounted by 50%?

     

    Central Banks don't have to report their gold holdings, and, accounting rules don't apply to the FED, or any Central Banks for that matter.

     

    So, upon further consideration the passing of this Tier 1, the increasing to "purchase price" the accounting of gold, may not have the effect I previously thought.
    27 Jul 2012, 03:16 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    I believe the strongest effect will be felt in Europe. Banks there still have gold reserves. Regional banks can hold gold, and they are often the most threatened. Some of the 2Bigs are major players in precious metals, operating large storage vaults and ETFs with huge stores of the metal.

     

    Strategically, the first thought I had was that Italy (sitting on over 1000 metric tonnes of gold) could recapitalize floundering major Italian banks by transferring gold around, or more probably, "loaning" them gold while the physical metal remains in their treasury. Swaps similar to what we have seen with the Fed and the 2Bigs (what a noncoincidence) could be engineered, taking toxic paper and converting it into gleaming gold...

     

    Remember the demand for collateral from Finland recently? Gold would have been a poor choice for the PIIGS, given that it would be discounted 50%, but change the rules, and those poroblems go away...

     

    This would truly strengthen the European situation, and give them a work-around for their awkward lack of control over their own currency, the Euro. Things which the fractured EZ countries could never agree upon would be made possible by using gold as a substitute currency and asset.

     

    In terms of the market impact, I believe it would still be much the same, though I do not expect it to make goldbugs everywhere filthy rich by suddenly multiplying the value of gold by 3 or 5 times.
    27 Jul 2012, 03:28 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9836) | Send Message
     
    A couple of wonderful comments, Trip.

     

    I agree that this could affect the EU countries in a positive way. But I don't think the TBTFs own a lot of gold. Silver, yes, as in JPM.

     

    Let's put it this way, if you were a giant EU bank like Santander, and you were seeing your balance sheet collapse, would you not first sell (or convert) your gold, which legally can now and in the past only be listed at 50% of its value, to get back 100% of its value?

     

    Best guess is that the major banks here and in the EU don't own a whole lot of gold.

     

    My greatest concern is that this new rule would allow a Hunt Brothers-type chance for the TBTF banks to corner the gold market. We all know how that turned out.

     

    As JL alluded, gold could spike, but then come tumbling down real fast.

     

    I will forward your wonderful comments and insights to JL, and tell him you said, "Hi!"

     

    Lastly, and again doing some more serious processing -- because I am thinking about moving some cash into paper gold -- I think Spain and maybe Italy could do more to push gold up, than this potential Basel 3 change.

     

    That's why I am targeting Goldfields, to get a pretty good yield, and maybe a little growth, too, while waiting to see how this develops. I think it's a safer way to play this coming news event.
    27 Jul 2012, 04:08 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    Thanks for sharing that exchange, Maya. Lounsbury's #2 contains the gist of a quite compelling argument against including gold in Tier 1 capital of banks.

     

    That considering gold as part of Tier 1 capital is on the table for discussion is anything but surprising. I would find actual adoption of the proposal in any form completely stunning. Consideration lends support to gold prices. Rejection of the proposal appears to hold some gold price downside.
    27 Jul 2012, 04:13 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Another angle to consider, would be the simultaneous upgrading of gold to a Tier 1 capital asset at the same time that the Fed cuts the interest they pay on reserves on deposit...
    27 Jul 2012, 04:46 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    Yall ignored me when I posted it. Guess when one disapears for a while they should expect that. LOL

     

    QuickChat#235, June 19, 2012 [View instapost] I was inspired by a friend and began looking around the net and found this. Should increase gold demand.

     

    Gold to be reclassified. Guess the banks are begining to realize they need some tier 1 assets and bonds and especially those from the EZ just are not doing it. Especially now that the EZ can rate them themselves. No more need for a rating agency.

     

    http://bit.ly/MFq0uT
    27 Jul 2012, 07:59 PM Reply Like
  • optionsgirl
    , contributor
    Comments (5061) | Send Message
     
    The banks that will benefit imo :
    HSBC, Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan Chase, Barclays, Societe General, Bank of Nova Scotia comes to mind.

     

    Nobody has mentioned that the audit the fed bill passed in the congress, with some democrats voting yes with the republicans. There is actually some chance of the companion bill being passed in the senate, despite the obstacles Harry Reid et al will put in its path. The idea that we may someday know what the USA did with its gold ( is any left?) blows my mind.
    28 Jul 2012, 01:13 AM Reply Like
  • DigDeep
    , contributor
    Comments (2357) | Send Message
     
    I'd say the public 'eyebrows' will all raise if/when the details of the Feds $26T loan/swap activity in the last 4 years is exposed. The lightbuld will finally light for Congress
    28 Jul 2012, 01:27 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17796) | Send Message
     
    DG: If it helps assuage your feelings ... ;-))

     

    I didn't ignore and I remembered it. It's just I'm quiet if I don't have anything useful (or humorous or ... ) to add.

     

    With my current focus being far away from such stuff ATM I seldom have much to chip in.

     

    HardToLove
    28 Jul 2012, 09:24 AM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4824) | Send Message
     
    OG - I'm guessing that most of the U.S. gold is still in the U.S. but has been transferred to GS in exchange for consulting and other various services. :( (sarcasm intended)
    28 Jul 2012, 10:07 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    I saw it, remembered it, and was looking for it to link to this topic, but could not find it. Thanks DG.
    28 Jul 2012, 10:23 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    TSAR: RBS (Royal Bank of Scotland) operatres its own ETN, RBS Gold Trendpoint.

     

    State Street Bank is one of the owners of FSG (Factor Shares 2xGold ETF).

     

    SGOL has a family of ETFs backed by physcial gold, mostly on deposit with Swiss banks, but also expanding now to similar operations in New York, London and Singapore.

     

    Etc. Its a long list. Banks are involved at every level.
    29 Jul 2012, 10:11 AM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    I would like answers to the numberous questions that come up from these 3 stories. I think there is a reason the fed has never been auditied and it never will be.

     

    http://bloom.bg/MOHcjQ

     

    http://bit.ly/zsbcoo

     

    http://bit.ly/wZT4sw
    30 Jul 2012, 01:56 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Again, a nod of thanks to DG!

     

    As I think further about this topic, I am coming to the realization that its all about the sovereign debt/bond situation boiling in Europe, more than anything else. For one thing I checked on Italy's gold reserves, and it turns out I was wrong (sorry, I had them confused with the Swiss). Italy has 2451.8 tonnes of gold, not 1000.

     

    At the current price of gold, that is $128,220,324,355 worth of gold.

     

    If the markets use the current Tier 3 valuation, its half as much, $64,110,162,177. That sort of difference "leaves a mark", even when talking about borrowing on a nation state level.

     

    IF the concept is to find sufficient reserves for nations to pull hundreds of billions of dollars from the various sources planned to prop up the EZ, and annoying vetoes are lurking by countries like Finland who insist upon collateral, this topic applies at a very high level.

     

    When banks are required to post reserves, 20% (such as is required of larger banks in China) is considered a tough standard. Assuming Italy, for instance, were looking to get the rescue fund(s) to purchase its sovereign bonds at an interest rate "discount" to what the market would otherwise demand (currently nearly 7%), would putting up $1billion in gold backing $10billion in bonds make a difference?

     

    Without a doubt. I suspect the interest rates would dive, to a level close to those seen by far stronger economies.

     

    The machinations required to make any of this happen are immense, but I would think that step one would be this modification to Basel.
    31 Jul 2012, 11:11 AM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1919) | Send Message
     
    Do the 2B2F hold gold or PM's?
    31 Jul 2012, 11:17 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    RIght now they would be foolish to do so since it is considered a Tier 3 asset and discounted on the books 50%. However, some of them operate vault operations, etf's, etn's, and are therefor involved in the story from that point of view. Finally, they are most assuredly invested in various equities which would be affected.
    31 Jul 2012, 11:29 AM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1919) | Send Message
     
    Gotcha. Yes I was just thinking that by central banks buying up the metal it would be an indirect infusion of capital into those 2 bigs that hold gold or bought gold when it was $300/oz even at 50% market value it would still make their balance sheets look better and if it changed to 100%...now that would really be a capital infusion.
    31 Jul 2012, 01:04 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    http://yhoo.it/MQc4yv

     

    This one has been brewing for a long time, but it may be about to blow up in Google's face...

     

    2 groups I used to belong to are after Google in the Courts over copyright issues. Google has already scanned in millions of books (borrowed from libraries, naturally, LOL, they didn't even have the class to actually buy their own copies) and has been offering snippets via their search engine to their customers. Google has lost their bid to have this process termed "fair use" - as well they should, they are after all scanning in the entire copyrighted work, including artwork (hence the participation in the complaint by the photographers).

     

    Now they are falling back on the proven defense that "the public benefits". This very democratic defense, wherein the rights of the few owners should be subordinated to the convenience of the many thieves (and help Google make millions in revenue, of course) would once have been a laughable farce, but no longer, given recent rulings from the courts...

     

    Google has been using delaying tactics for years, but these particular groups (both the Author's Guild and the Photographers) are patient, motivated, and determined.

     

    Of course, SHOULD Google ultimately win, the motive for any author, artist or photographer to publish ANYTHING will be gravely eroded, and intellectual property rights will go the way of the dinosaur, so long as a sufficiently large group wants something you own.
    27 Jul 2012, 01:33 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    Welcome to corporatism and free market capitalism TB....that is an example of it at it's best.
    There is no way it should be legal. They should be penalized severely....probably won't happen. Time will tell.

     

    After all...Google is a "Person" now, and as they said, "working in the best interest of the people".

     

    GS is doing "god's work" and now Google is doing the "peoples work".
    27 Jul 2012, 01:51 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17796) | Send Message
     
    Just a continued erosion of *all* personal property rights started long ago and accelerated by the SCOTUS and others.

     

    A natural side effect of "creeping socialism or communism" and a concomitant reduction in true capitalism.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove

     

    EDIT: P.S. When you no longer own the results of your personal efforts ... what's left of capitalism and "personal property".
    27 Jul 2012, 01:58 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4557) | Send Message
     
    >H.T.Love ... So Goldman, Google et al will be the engine driving us into socialism? It has been my understanding that an economic structure where corporations & government are nearly indistinguishable starts with "F".
    27 Jul 2012, 02:19 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17796) | Send Message
     
    I didn't say those were the entities driving us there.

     

    Everyone is free to draw their own conclusions, of course.

     

    HardToLove

     

    EDIT: Yes, Feudalism (or later on Fascism?) may be the current(?) and future path we trod. I can't determine what odds I would place on that being the end result - the current state may be merely a transition phase.
    27 Jul 2012, 02:27 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5977) | Send Message
     
    Taking some profits off the table this afternoon.
    27 Jul 2012, 02:37 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Smart rat.

     

    I have done so as much as I can, still have a few programmed sales which might trigger, though small ones...

     

    Overall I netted close to even for the week, adding some long horizon stocks, some gold, selling off dribs and drabs and taking profits where I could.

     

    I bought into these during the last correction, so I am taking profits, but not as heavy cash as I had anticipated at this point.
    27 Jul 2012, 02:42 PM Reply Like
  • Mercy Jimenez
    , contributor
    Comments (2030) | Send Message
     
    Good day for it FPA; the Draghi halo effect will last until the FOMC disappoints or Angela returns from vacation -- whichever occurs first.

     

    BTW, in case you missed it -- I thought Dr. Kris wrote a pretty interesting article about trading patterns 24 hours before the FOMC announcements: Profiting From The 'Pre-FOMC Drift' http://seekingalpha.co...
    27 Jul 2012, 02:45 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    5:14 PM The SEC obtains an emergency court order to freeze the assets of traders using accounts in Hong Kong and Singapore to reap illegal profits by trading in advance of the public announcement earlier this week that Cnooc (CEO) agreed to acquire Nexen (NXY). Comment! [Energy, M&A]
    27 Jul 2012, 05:35 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    For Gods sake are time zones now going to get you convicted. or am I missing something.
    27 Jul 2012, 08:05 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    That particular post was off of SA market comments on the front page. But it is on every new agency.
    27 Jul 2012, 11:02 PM Reply Like
  • JeffLeach1986
    , contributor
    Comments (229) | Send Message
     
    I always seem to be a few steps behind in understanding how the market works, well realistically about a mile behind. Back in 2007, I knew there was a real estate bubble, but I didnt understand the impact it would have on every sector of the market. And of course I was burned like most everyone else.

     

    Seems like the last two bubbles we had in our economy were fueled by greed. Financial instutions are made of people and people are motivated by money and it seems less by any moral ethical boundaries. So bubbles are inflated and then they pop at some point when things become unsustainable.

     

    These same unscrupulous indviduals and institutions have moved on from the dot com bubble to the real estate bubble and now to what? What is the next exploitation they are taking advantage of that will burst at some point?

     

    My gut feeling is that it has something to do with all the liquidity that Bernanke is injecting into the economy, well not the economy but to the banks. So what are the banks doing with this cash? Are they constrained in how they use it? Is this the fuel for the HFT algorithms that the large financial institutions are using?

     

    A bubble that I sense is that more and more of the volume is being generated by HFT Algorithms and less by individuals. So the HFTs are competing amongst themselves for a diminishing amount of gain fleeced from the individual investor. Is the impact of this competition artificially inflated equity markets?

     

    Where is the bubble?
    28 Jul 2012, 10:17 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    That is a very good question about where is the next bubble. Who knows. There has been much debate if it is gold or not?

     

    I do not think the banks are in on HFT. That is GS, and the hedges & maybe private equity funds..

     

    IMO, banks are hoarding cash & buying gov't bonds..it has been a gimme for them.

     

    IF I had to guess at the next bubble, it is bonds of all kinds. It's probably a couple of years away, or as long as the fed keeps interest low, but the market will move way ahead of the actual rate increase. I would not be surprised at an unwinding of bonds at anytime. Do your own due diligence .. as this is just my opinion.
    28 Jul 2012, 11:15 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    Bubbles aren't caused by greed, they are caused by a lack of free markets. Free markets are markets free of coercion. The point of gov is to keep people free, that is free of coercion. When gov regulates voluntary transactions, it becomes the very thing it was supposed to protect us from. It is coercion that creates inflation, bubbles, that ripple through the economy like a storm. Without proper controls from the people, a central bank can be part of this coercion that effects wealth transfer. This is what we have now.

     

    Cb policy now is to create a wealth effect by inflating equities. Ben has said so. For the short term the bubble is in equities. Then it will be bond. Watch for cb policy and monitor the size of cb balance sheets. This is part of how you time your moves. You have to time the sloshing of liquidity among asset classes based on gov coercion to protect yourself.
    28 Jul 2012, 11:58 AM Reply Like
  • JeffLeach1986
    , contributor
    Comments (229) | Send Message
     
    My wife has been attending the Def Con Conference in Las Vegas the last few days. Some of the information from that event could be called "scary" in regards to vulnerabilities that are prevalent in our networks and systems.

     

    http://nyti.ms/QwjC7c

     

    She also sent me a link to a talk given last year with regards to out of control algorithms. Where algorithms compete with other algorithms with no input from humans. Some interesting stuff.

     

    http://bit.ly/OvdsXb
    28 Jul 2012, 02:50 PM Reply Like
  • Mercy Jimenez
    , contributor
    Comments (2030) | Send Message
     
    Great links, Jeff, thanks. The regulators are still working on new programs to mitigate the risks associated with the 2010 Flash Crash. Two years later they are "still working on it." We really need to be prepared for anything in this market from one day to the next -- because the watchdogs are either clueless or have more to gain from turning a blind eye to the takeover of the BOTs.
    28 Jul 2012, 03:05 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1919) | Send Message
     
    I thought many here from both sides would appreciate this.

     

    "Why Capitalism has an Image Problem"

     

    http://on.wsj.com/MTCr6w
    28 Jul 2012, 11:19 AM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1919) | Send Message
     
    Don't know if you caught this article TB but the author is a libertarian.
    29 Jul 2012, 10:50 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Wondeful article. Unfortunately I found the weakest portion to occur when he attempted to create a definition of modern capitalism designed to appeal to anti-capitalists. I had hopes for a second there that he would succeed, he is otherwise very able, but that particular goal was one which many have sought, and none have captured.

     

    I would add that extremely high tax rates tend to suppress the traditional "giving back" cycle. Logically more and more people simply think "...I already gave at the office...", and as government takes control of every facet of our culture, this is largely true.
    29 Jul 2012, 11:50 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17796) | Send Message
     
    jakurtz: an excellent find.

     

    The *core* of the issue seems, to me, to be encapsulated in this quote.

     

    "To accept the concept of virtue requires that you believe some ways of behaving are right and others are wrong always and everywhere. That openly judgmental stand is no longer acceptable in America's schools nor in many American homes."

     

    At various places in the past the concentrators have touched upon such issues, summarized in the expression that folks did what was "right" because that's what was expected of them. Lacking such expectation, many are as dinghies tossed about in the waves of a storm at sea.

     

    Of course there were negatives associated with that old method of "morality", but overall its benefits far outweighed its negatives in the majority of places and cases where it was in force. The lack of it may explain the massive increase in the number of laws that need to be on the books - law and enforcement used to be the "backstop" for the morality provided by "expectation", and it seems now to have supplanted it - if it's legal it must be moral. If we are only greedy, all we need do is get the laws changed and we can be legal, greedy, rich, and moral simultaneously with no care for other than our own enrichment.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    29 Jul 2012, 12:07 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4824) | Send Message
     
    HTL - I hate to admit it but you last statement rings true.

     

    "if it's legal it must be moral. If we are only greedy, all we need do is get the laws changed and we can be legal, greedy, rich, and moral simultaneously with no care for other than our own enrichment."

     

    This is where much of the economy already is (liberal led) and others (conservatives) are considering whether to make a last stand and risk what they have left, while the middle may be buying into the concept and trying not to be left behind. It is a sad state of affairs. In our household we try to do what is right based upon the concept that if something we do may cause harm to others then it is wrong; period. It doesn't matter how much we may profit if our actions harm others. Unfortunately, this doesn't seem to be knit into the fabric of our nation any more.
    29 Jul 2012, 01:20 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    HTL...this is correct & the root of the problems, but only you and I feel that way strongly enough to say it in public. K202 just posted that "make it legal" and then we can be immoral, unethical, rich, and greedy and it's ok.
    Most now always fall back that the corps #1 responsibility is to "make money" for their shareholders no matter how they do it. Some will give a little and say they "prefer" to do it morally, ethically and legal, but if all else fail ...make the money no matter how or the damage done to the country and others.
    29 Jul 2012, 03:02 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    There is nothing wrong with your own enrichment. Personal enrichment is simply capital creation. Capital creation is the goal, and this is what capitalism is. What is being confused here is capital creation and stealing. Stealing is not capital creation. Stealing is the involuntary transfer of capital. What you want is a market that is free of stealing, hence a "free" market.

     

    Thus, a person or an association of persons (a corporation) can make money (capital creation) any way they want in a free market and there will be no damage to anyone else. So even if you think they are mean or selfish or rude or arrogant, is irrelevant, because they can't force you to do business with them.

     

    The goal is a market free of force or rather than free of coercion. The reason for a market free of coercion is that you then have a market that operates a maximum price sensitivity. Then you have a market that is capable of maximum productivity, which means the highest possible standard of living for everyone.

     

    The point of capitalism them is to have a system where people are safe from their capital from being stolen. Capital is just stored labor that is manifested in the form of an asset (assets = capital). Capital is just an abstract. It is a claim of ownership on the product of labor. Capitalism then, is a system where the product of people's labor is protected from stealing. If capital isn't safe, then people aren't safe.

     

    Let's be clear here. The ONLY alternative to capitalism is tyranny. Capitalism is compassion, because it protects the individual from theft. When the individual is protected from theft, everyone is protected from theft. When you can't steal to survive, you must produce to survive. When everyone is producing, then the economy operates at peak efficiency, and everyone lives at the highest possible standard of living given a certain level of technology.

     

    Capitalism produces a market dependent on voluntary cooperation. The need for welfare is eliminated because business has an incentive for the populace to be wealthy. What good is a poor populace that can't buy products. Business must innovate to make the best products at the lowest prices, because in a market free of coercion, the consumer and the employee reign supreme. It is only when gov force is captured by business are these tables turned (ie we are going to FORCE you to buy healthcare or be punished).

     

    Capitalism isn't dog eat dog and anything goes, it is your stored labor is protected from theft, thus leaving people with only voluntary cooperation as a means of survival.

     

    Our public schools have woefully failed to educate the populace on capitalism, because capitalism means a people free of coercion. The pattern through out history is the capture of gov coercion to control people for the benefit of those with access to the coercion at the expense of those without the access. Why would people in control of education want to make people aware of this scam?
    29 Jul 2012, 03:50 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4824) | Send Message
     
    LT - Sorry, but I think you misread my statement. Please don't label me as one who thinks that "make it legal" and then we can immoral...
    I was just quoting what HTL had written and agreeing that it is sad that our nation seems to be gravitating in that direction. I also said that damage done to others makes it wrong. I don't know how you misinterpreted my comment.
    29 Jul 2012, 04:38 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4824) | Send Message
     
    Well stated jhooper. By the way, do you have relatives in Nebraska? There is a J Hooper out there that is making a name for herself.
    29 Jul 2012, 04:44 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    I did not mean it that you personally endorsed it....it is that corporations and the very wealthy work very hard and spend alot of money to deregulate & change laws to make it legal. Sorry for the implication.
    29 Jul 2012, 05:21 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    "The goal is a market free of force or rather than free of coercion. The reason for a market free of coercion is that you then have a market that operates a maximum price sensitivity"

     

    Markets free of coercion are quite limited in the modern era as a consequence of pronounced economies of scale in numerous sectors and ineffective impediment to resultant market power by inept "anti-trust" governance. Price sensitivity does not exist without existence of reasonably proximate alternatives.

     

    "The ONLY alternative to capitalism is tyranny. Capitalism is compassion, because it protects the individual from theft. When the individual is protected from theft, everyone is protected from theft."

     

    Protection of individuals from theft requires containment (and offsetting compensation otherwise) of negative externalities associated with private, non-profit, and governmental activities. THAT necessitates regulation in some form. Those in our political system screaming "excessive regulation" without clear enunciation of the excess as basis for their complaint(s) effectively neuter themselves in any effort to promote something better. Those unable to comprehend the consequences of behaviors that produced Love Canal, coal cinders bouncing off windshields of Interstate traffic passing through places like Gary Indiana in the 1960-70s, carbon soot blanketing square miles of surface area, etc. don't engender support, or respect, for their opinions. Neither do poorly substantiated claims of negative externalities from activities such as CO2 from fossil fuel use.
    29 Jul 2012, 05:44 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4824) | Send Message
     
    OK
    29 Jul 2012, 05:52 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    HTL, excellent assessment. I would add another dimension that flows from "negatives associated with that old method of 'morality', but overall its benefits far outweighed its negatives in the majority of places and cases where it was in force."

     

    The article's "rise of collusive capitalism" is IMO a reflection of that old morality that morphed over decades into institutional arrangements that no longer well serve liberty and capitalism. I refer to the grand "Democrat" partnership of business, government and labor. Labor arose from private initiative to countervail against monopsony power of industrialists. "Labor" has for many years functioned as a special interest serving itself rather than as a 'anti-trust' regulator generative positive externalities beneficial to workers and consumers at large.
    29 Jul 2012, 06:09 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17796) | Send Message
     
    D-Inv: Yes, the "morphing" into collusive capitalism (maybe we shouldn't even call it capitalism as JHooper's excellent discussion clearly demonstrates we wouldn't have true capitalism as there is then coercive power, whether by government force or near-monopolistic "trusts") is the natural tendency of human behavior unchecked by either a strong moral grounding or adquate (but not excessive!) regulation.

     

    That's where the law and regulation is supposed to backstop the "morality" which should be in play in a society with relatively strong moral grounding throughout its fabric. There's always going to be some bad actors. Even in the regulatory structure.

     

    All goes back, of course, to another tenet of our founding which demanded an active and informed electorate to keep such things, especially government, in check.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    29 Jul 2012, 07:55 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    I can't be specific. Believe it or not my position runs an abduction risk, so we have policies that prohibit specifics on websites. That's why my avatar wears a mask.

     

    Hooper is common. Like so many names, it used to be an occupation like Smith (black, gold, tin, silver, etc). A hooper, hooped barrels. So there are lots of hoopers running around. Coopers too.
    29 Jul 2012, 08:44 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    "such as CO2 from fossil fuel use"

     

    This is where we must be careful with the old strawmen popping up.

     

    A market free of coercion, would mean all transactions are voluntary. A coerced transaction is by definition not voluntary. So, the goal of gov should be to regulate involuntary transactions. Someone dumping trash or pollution in your yard would be an involuntary transaction. As such, this becomes a proper role for gov.

     

    The next question is how much power do you give gov to regulate involuntary transactions? Do you want the police kicking in doors at night, shooting suspects in alleys, randomly stopping your car for a search, or locking you up for 10 years in prison before you even know what the charges are? Shouldn't we call anyone that opposes this a wild-eyed extremist that doesn't want the police to regulate?

     

    Just because gov has a role in regulating involuntary transactions, does not mean the gov should have unlimited power to control people in order to regulate involuntary transactions. This is what is meant by limited gov. It doesn't mean NO gov, but gov that is limited to its only logical purpose, and whose power is limited to make sure it stays dedicated to that purpose.

     

    The most prosperous societies are free socities. That is, socities that are free of coercion, whether the coercion is public or private. The problem we currently have is that gov regulation has lost its limits. Gov regulators are accuser, judge, jury, and excutioner. The legislative branch and the judicial branch have ceded their powers to the excutive regulatory agencies. Laws are written via regulations without the consent of the people.

     

    When the gov leaves its natural role and begins to regulate without limits, and especially when it regulates voluntary transactions (like how much something should cost), you get asset bubbles. And, you get asset bubbles that become so large, that their bursting causes years of austerity.

     

    It is what it is. It is what Europe has been doing for hundreds of years. A regulated economy is nothing new. The monarchy of Europe has been doing it since there has been a monarchy. This is why people fled to the new world. They were fleeing gov regulation of the economy. Regulation of voluntary transactions creates a two class society (as we are seeing develop in the US). Those at the top with access to gov guns and the ability to regulate their competition out of business, and those without such access.

     

    If you learn to recognize these realities, you can learn to spot the bubbles, and devise some ways to protect yourself. Everyone has an ideology, just make sure your ideology does not blind you to reality. Reason is the simple acceptance of reality.
    29 Jul 2012, 09:01 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4824) | Send Message
     
    Understood.
    29 Jul 2012, 09:30 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    "The most prosperous societies are free socities. That is, socities that are free of coercion, whether the coercion is public or private. The problem we currently have is that gov regulation has lost its limits."

     

    Freedom requires eternal vigilance in a non-stop search for Goldilocks porridge. :-)
    30 Jul 2012, 10:52 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    When govs have unlimited authorities to regulate how porridge is made, then there is no need to search for it, because there won't be any.
    30 Jul 2012, 11:05 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4898) | Send Message
     
    "Capitalism isn't dog eat dog and anything goes, it is your stored labor is protected from theft, thus leaving people with only voluntary cooperation as a means of survival."

     

    What you speak of here died 40 years ago...Capitalism as you see it is dead & gone forever. Wall St. used to have one purpose and that was to provide capital, that too has been gone for as long.
    They want you to keep believing just that, so people are even more divided than they are...they mention capitalism, and you guys fall for it, but not in the terms you dream of. No gov't is going to bring it back either. They own all of them. Corps say what you want to hear, then do the opposite behind the scenes.
    29 Jul 2012, 04:02 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1919) | Send Message
     
    LT, The problem I have with your pessimism in regard to capitalism is that you or I or any number of us individuals could right now run for congress, if we were willing to put forth the work and sacrifice it takes to get elected. In fact, I would argue 2010 when people (not me) voted in the Tea Party guys into the House did just this. The people brought in individuals into the government that are acting independent of the corporate control you say has taken over government, they were mostly newbies with one clear platform smaller gov., less taxes. The occupy wall street movement had/has the opportunity to do something similar on the other side. So while I agree with your sentiment that their is obvious corruption and weakness in the current state of things, I do not believe in throwing in the towel and saying, "Well, capitalism doesn't work anymore." I do not share your pessimism that crony capitalism can not be worked out of the system. At the same time we have to have a little balance believing that corporations want/need a strong middle-class to grow and therefore are not all bad but share a commonality through the virtue of mutual appreciation, we need them they need us kind of thing.

     

    Thanks for the replies I knew if I nudged a little I would get a lot of smart folks contributing to a very interesting topic (at least to me)
    29 Jul 2012, 06:26 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    It may not technically be corporate control, but the Tea Party hardly remains the pristine, grass roots organization people wish it were.
    http://nyti.ms/rJQgRm
    http://nyr.kr/T1imfy
    30 Jul 2012, 06:58 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Don't believe everything (well, maybe that should be "anything") you read in that section of the NYT, jpau.

     

    I've been politicially aware and active since the mid-60's, and the Tea Party events I have attended are the only such political gatherings I ever saw where no one, ever, hit me up for money. The attendees were NOT all "white" (including myself, btw) by a long shot, nor comprised of right wing republican operatives. Many of those I spoke to here in the South were (unsurprising to me) disaffected Democrats. At some of the meetings they were a loud and large fraction (I was told over 30%, and I believe it).

     

    Libertarians (we are inveterate rubberneckers at any political event) were there in large numbers, but then again, I live in a region which has an unusually large contingent of "RINO" (Republicrats in name only) politicians and voters as well.

     

    Attendees brought their own food and water, signs, provided their own transportation, paid for their own lodging, and (most unusual of all) cleaned up their area prior to leaving the event.

     

    On the other hand, I have also attended political rallies in the past thrown by the two major parties. They featured the attendees being supplied with pre-printed signs and instructions on when and where to chant slogans - free food, free drinks - bus rides to and from the event - housing if needed - and "goody bags" stuffed with all manner of things, from t shirts sporting the party line to balloons for the kiddies and adults (though the adult items could also be used as a form of birth control). Needless to say, someone with deep pockets was underwriting those events...

     

    Murdoch is usually demonized by the NYT editorial staff and feature writers on this topic just because Fox is usually the only major media that covers any of the Tea Party events (so Murdoch must be secretly funneling money to them as well, right?), at least since CNN got embarrassed trying to gather "gotcha" quotes from bewildered Tea Partiers when the CNN reporter forgot that they, too, could be captured on video clearly showing their clumsy scheme (hilarious, it went viral there a few years back). Nothing like unedited raw video to explode artfully edited soundbites for what they are...

     

    Still, its funny when someone tries to track down the maximum "leader" of the Tea Party, or dig up dirt on where all the "big money" goes. Listing the names of wealthy people (well, at least 2 wealthy people) as though that constituted proof of wrongdoing is something which would once have been beneath the honor of the NYT I grew up with... But not anymore. Now its just a rag like many other rags. The late, great New York Times... May she RIP.

     

    Anyone who has never attended a Tea Party rally should go to one, just to see what it really is (and is not). For that matter, I would strongly suggest that attending some rallies held by the 2 major parties would also be an enlightening experience for the uninitiated...
    30 Jul 2012, 07:29 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    TB, we disagree. Fox News, who had an associate producer rallying protesters at a tea party event is no paragon of media virtue; and while the cred of the NYT is deservedly far reduced from what it once was, it's still not the complete rag you seem to describe. We have data that shows Fox News watchers are more uninformed than people who claim to watch no news at all. I have yet to see that said about NYT.

     

    I should go to a rally, I think you are right. I should see for myself whether these are concerned citizens who want to make the country better, or if they are the ignorant zealots described by Matt Taibbi.
    30 Jul 2012, 09:35 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4557) | Send Message
     
    >jpau ... I'm no Tea-Partier but I think you might find going to a few of their events ... interesting. I say "a few" because the message, agenda & presentation is quite different depending on the corporate sponsorship. I've attended with some of my true believing friends and I've found most of the people there were there for deeply held ideals even as some of those ideals were diametrically opposed to other attendees, the Constitution & the sponsors. It almost felt Democratic.
    30 Jul 2012, 09:49 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    "We have data that shows Fox News watchers are more uninformed than people who claim to watch no news at all."

     

    :-) Who is "We"?

     

    " I have yet to see that said about NYT."

     

    Now you have. Anyone that relies on a single "news" outlet is pretty much uninformed.
    30 Jul 2012, 09:54 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    We are the American public, and anyone else in the world with an internet connection and an ounce of curiosity.

     

    http://bit.ly/Qsl2FC

     

    NYT wasn't measured. If you follow the link to the pdf that FDU put out, it would appear that most of the respondents did, in fact, have more than one source of news. However, between CNN, MSNBC and Fox, those who exclusively watched CNN and MSNBC still answered better than those who watched no news; those who exclusively watched Fox News did not.

     

    I think we agree that getting news from a single source makes one poorly informed.
    30 Jul 2012, 11:46 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4115) | Send Message
     
    "We are the American public, and anyone else in the world with an internet connection and an ounce of curiosity.

     

    http://bit.ly/Qsl2FC"

     

    :-) Now why is it that anyone should accept anything NPR has to say about Fox programs? Fox's hiring of Juan Williams after his dismissal by NPR for violating a boss's sense of political correctness does absolute wonders for NPR credibility.

     

    And, bluntly speaking, I can't regard any "survey" prepared by a group or organization that regards Fox News and MSNBC as "partisan" and "idealogical" but NPR and CNN.not so.
    31 Jul 2012, 01:28 AM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    I'm sure that you, I, or anyone else can come up with a variety of rationalizations for believing that people whose viewpoints differ from our own are wrong. Until someone disproves the results that FDU published, whether NPR is ideological or partisan may be subject for debate - but it won't change the fact that their listeners become better informed than people who watch or listen to Fox News.
    31 Jul 2012, 08:01 AM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1919) | Send Message
     
    Better informed based on what? Eight questions? If their were any fast and furious questions or national security leak questions I can promise you listeners to NPR and watchers of msnbc and CNN would not have a clue.

     

    You can draw no conclusions from such a technically bad survey.
    31 Jul 2012, 08:17 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5823) | Send Message
     
    Once you see the word "rationalization" show up, you know the propoganda for tyranny is breaking down. This is an old tactic. Imagine being in Spain in 1566. The attack on England for leaving the Catholic Church was supported by all the top elites. The top brass at the Catholic Church and the top monarchs were far better educated and informed than the rest of the masses. Anyone who disagreed with them were just uniformed.

     

    Of course the issue is, informed with what? The answer is informed with propoganda. The bottom line here is tyrannts always need cover for their tyranny, because they are frauds. In fact they have always used the same fraud - "tyranny is good for the economy".

     

    They always demagogue those that differ because to allow a debate about the virtues of tyranny would go very badly for the tyrannt. Thus, anyone who disagrees is just poorly informed.

     

    A gov managed economy is tyranny. If gov is going to regulate voluntary transactions, then you can't have a bill of rights. Controlling an economy means controlling people, and controlling people is tyranny. Tyranny leads to the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer, because it relys on theft. All theft must utilize fraud, and the common fruad now is, "people who don't know about our propoganda are just uninformed."
    31 Jul 2012, 08:24 AM Reply Like
  • Joseph L. Shaefer
    , contributor
    Comments (1511) | Send Message
     
    TB, as one who spent a large part of my life as a geopolitical analyst, my reaction to the Gray Lady going down is visceral. This was once a fine newspaper -- one with which I often disagreed but never doubted their journalistic standards. Now it is merely an embittered and shriveled shadow of what it once was.
    31 Jul 2012, 11:28 AM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4824) | Send Message
     
    I realize that most Americans are either misinformed or uninformed about many issues. It is obvious by how fractured the population has become. I don't watch any television at all. I do occasionally listen to talk radio, but only a few minutes per week. Still, I went through the questions and felt confident that I could answer every one correctly.

     

    I get my news right here on the QC. The best source of factual and relevant information on the planet! Of course, I do augment my QC readings with other news articles from various sources on the Internet, but a tremendous amount of the information gets discussed here, surprisingly enough.

     

    I really think that the key is that most Americans are not very interested in what is going on. They would prefer to think that they are informed, but won't take the time to dig for answers to important issues. Most people (from both sides of the aisle) just let others tell them what to think. That is probably the biggest caused of the results in the survey: apathy. How pathetic!
    31 Jul 2012, 11:33 AM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13491) | Send Message
     
    Anyone who has ever had to put down a herd animal wounded by wolves might learn a lot about the final days of sickly beasts. As they sicken they lose the vitality to resist the encroachment of parasites of all kinds. In the end they die as much from the long term abuse from the parasites as from the teeth of the wolves.

     

    I have always felt it was somehow unfair that at the point of death for the host, the parasites are still thriving and just leap off and go in search of another meal ticket.

     

    The NYT is swarming with them.
    31 Jul 2012, 02:05 PM Reply Like
  • robert.b.ferguson
    , contributor
    Comments (10802) | Send Message
     
    You shouldn't be so quick to accept propaganda from the left as fact. I have contributed time, money and labor to TEA Party functions and to advance our agenda. Raising the specter of the Koch brothers is typical fodder for those who really don't know. The Koch brothers are supporting Dewhurst in the TX Senate race and TEA Party activists are supporting Cruz. Guess who is winning. http://fxn.ws/OHlzQC
    31 Jul 2012, 02:57 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    My post never accused anyone of being uninformed simply because they disagree with me, jhooper. In all your bloviating, can you just not come up with any facts to refute what I am stating? I'm now a propagandist for tyranny? Really?

     

    I'm hardly a demagogue either. Asking which party currently has more seats in the House of Representatives is hardly a matter of opinion, and calling people uninformed if they don't know answers to factual questions such as that has nothing to do with propaganda.
    31 Jul 2012, 06:37 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    jakurtz, neither your opinion nor mine make this a good or bad survey. Fox couldn't even argue the results, they just attacked the faculty and institution instead, much like they did after the University of Maryland posted a similar finding previously. http://bit.ly/PnlHkJ;lb=
    31 Jul 2012, 06:41 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    I see no proof in your post r.b.f. to show that the Kochs are supporting Dewhurst, in fact, it looks like he's loaned his own campaign $11 million. This article claims 90 percent of his donations have come from inside Texas. http://bit.ly/MXYJ7p
    31 Jul 2012, 06:53 PM Reply Like
  • robert.b.ferguson
    , contributor
    Comments (10802) | Send Message
     
    jpau: Greetings. http://bit.ly/OBs6KI they are teaming up with Karl, Rove, hardly a TEA Party conservative, supporting establishment candidates. Try as you might to smear TEA Party activists it would behoove you to have some facts. Dewhurst lost to a cndidate backed not by super packs as Cruz was out spent 3:1 but by grass roots activists. Oh right that can't be because every one knows the TEA Party is weak and losing influence all the time. Just keep telling your self that so you can continue to be amazed and dumbfounded.
    1 Aug 2012, 09:37 AM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (769) | Send Message
     
    Hi Robert. I read the article, but failed again to find a single word stating that the Koch brothers were behind Dewhurst. The article, in my view, implied that the Koch brothers and Karl Rove seem at times to be working separately, except when opposing Obama. So please don't chide me to have some facts, when you haven't provided any yourself.

     

    I haven't stated my opinion on tea party activists, so I fail to see how I could be perceived to have smeared them.
    1 Aug 2012, 10:38 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (8206) | Send Message
     
    jpau, This is for everyone here but especially for you. Both the R and D nuts should pay attention. An interview with hillsdale college pres.

     

    I can not remember the poltical insta location. Who posted it and where is it. This would go well there.

     

    http://thedc.com/PERD4a
    2 Aug 2012, 06:09 PM Reply Like