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  • QE3 'Rally' Will Crash Before 2013  [View article]
    Thotdoc...One of my first serious economic lessons was in the 70's. Had to keep four 5-gallon cans of gas handy so I could be sure I could get to jobs mobilizing for offshore projects (oilfield diving). Few now remember or even believe there were the lines at gas pumps.

    But my first hard investment lesson came almost exactly 25 years ago in October: "In the days between October 14 and October 19, 1987, major indexes of market valuation in the United States dropped 30 percent or more. On October 19, 1987, a date that subsequently became known as'Black Monday', the Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeted 508 points, losing 22.6% of its total value. The S&P 500 dropped 20.4%, falling from 282.7 to 225.06. This was the greatest loss Wall Street had ever suffered on a single day." (Quote from the History News Network.)

    Of course we came back from big deal, unless you lived it at the time. On another note, those fully invested in 1929 only had to wait 25 years to get back to where they started. What could possibly go wrong?

    Having lost nearly everything twice and having recovered each time through much hard work, I probably have a different perspective than most.
    Oct 2, 2012. 12:04 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QE3 'Rally' Will Crash Before 2013  [View article]
    The almost flippant dismissal of crash or correction talk says much in itself. I see an age factor in play from my vantage point of 65 years. When you look back on former corrections you can (wisely) see that optimism eventually rules, and things have always turned out well in the long run...after all, the charts prove it.

    The difference is when you have personally lost, say, 30 to 50% of your net worth (or more), and now you are facing an uphill climb to recover and fewer years to do it. All that confidence you had begins to feel like stupidity at some point.

    To "appreciate" the triple whammy of the dot-com crash, 9-11, and Enron, in general you would have to have been at least 30 years old at the time and already an investor with much skin in the game. That would make you 40 or better now. If you are not there, be careful with all that confidence you now have. It can be fairly devastating when you get a tough gut punch followed by persistent hard jabs to the head.

    It's more than charts & numbers in play when it happens to you.
    Oct 2, 2012. 09:49 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • More FOMC: We'll hear more from Bernanke soon, but further reflection reveals the true power of today's QE3 announcement. By making the asset purchase program open-ended, the onus now falls onto the hawks to assemble the votes to end it. QE could be Fed policy for a very long time. Stocks, gold, silver, and currencies not nicknamed the greenback all seem to have realized this and moved sharply higher.  [View news story]
    Experts (Robert Prechter [aka Elliot Wave] and George Gilder [aka technology guru]) cost me the better part of one retirement, so I've had my share of lessons as well. Now my decisions are nothing short of stupid according to many...and I am doing surprisingly well.

    As for the so-called cliché, your plea is fully justified. We are on an unsustainable course and picking up speed.
    Sep 13, 2012. 03:02 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Platinum (PPLT) prices hit a four-month high this week as spreading unrest among mineworkers in South Africa, which accounts for nearly 80% of the world’s supply, prompted investors to cover bearish positions. Yet concerns about supply disruptions come at a time of low demand for platinum; analysts believe that if the unrest recedes, prices could fall.  [View news story]
    "Analysts believe that if the unrest recedes, prices could fall."

    Insightful. Let me guess...if unrest intensifies, prices could head higher.
    Aug 24, 2012. 05:14 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • End Of An Era For Gold Investors  [View article]
    $800 gold in 1980 is the same as $1600 gold in 2012? Even at 3% annual inflation that $800 in 32 years would be equivalent to over $2,000 today, and I hazard to guess that real inflation has averaged a bit over 3% annually. I could be wrong and have no ax to grind, but something isn't adding up here.
    Aug 3, 2012. 04:30 PM | 22 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Survival Rules For A Zombie Stock Market  [View article]
    Finally, an analysis that I can understand and gives words to the uneasy feeling in my gut. I am in a financial position where I could move heavily (for my relatively modest standing) into stocks, and yet I just can't do it. I have that same morose feeling that I had in the late 70's when the future looked bleak...although back then at least the older folks could sit comfortably on CD's with double-digit returns as their houses were also increasing in value (so to speak). But now, it feels like the bottom could fall out of anything and everything.

    The perfect contrary indicator? Perhaps. Nevertheless, there are times when a certain amount of pessimism is warranted. What's that saying? "Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean that somebody isn't out to kill you." Now I know who it is--a zombie.
    Jul 31, 2012. 12:26 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 29 Hyperinflations In The Last 100 Years: Is The Biggest One Coming?  [View article]

    With respect to gold, I saw well in advance what was coming upon us a number of years ago--unfortunately, I did not stick to my convictions but let the booming chorus sway me even though I knew better at the time. In the early 90's I started loading up on gold & silver, knowing full well that eventually reality would kick in and they would ratchet up accordingly. (I had done okay in the 70's with gold.)

    As I sat on the sidelines and watched the markets soar in the late 90's while the "value" of my gold and silver was taking the elevator down, I finally gave up after holding the metals for about 10 years (don't hold me to the exact timeframes). That's a lot of patient waiting while your friends are securing their retirements. Although I did not chase the dot-coms, I got slaughtered nonetheless when the bottom fell out, plus 9-11, plus Enron. The day I knew to get out of the markets (but didn't) was when I overheard a barefoot young Cajun gal in a McDonald's in Houma, Louisiana, tell her friend that she was going to buy a new pickup truck when her mutual fund got a little higher (true story). Trust me, when making money is that easy it's time to get very nervous.

    To climb back on the gold bandwagon now may be precisely the correct thing to do, but I don't have 10 or 20 years to fiddle around while the metals may get slammed hard for who knows what reason. Certainly 2, 3, even 5K (or more?) for an ounce of gold is possible in the next decade or two--but it is definitely not certain in the time that I have left. I also do NOT trust what our government may do given its history with respect to gold ownership by individuals. I can just see a campaign against unjust "profiteering" by nasty gold hoarders, sanctioned of course by those who do not have gold. I will add that I do have some modest holdings in PSLV, PPLT, AND SWC. Will let those ride for quite a while. I'm no active trader--bought too many BMWs for the corporate folks who reward themselves with company stock and thereby dilute the value of mine. I am settling for zero debt, a very modest lifestyle, and trying not to worry that I am missing out on the big bucks.
    Jul 18, 2012. 12:27 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 29 Hyperinflations In The Last 100 Years: Is The Biggest One Coming?  [View article]

    I am using ultra simple logic to make such an assessment. Every single government check represents money. Every payout of any kind is money. Technically, this does not mean that orders are routinely placed for the printing of more greenbacks. My argument is figurative, not literal.

    Every so-called entitlement payment, every paycheck to an increasing force of government workers, every funding of adventures like Solyndra, every payment to contractors (and some are certainly worthy), every defense expenditure (whether defensible or not), every subsidy, all accumulating interest on debt…every single dollar linked to government spending in any way represents those hypothetical greenbacks. When the collected taxes fall short on the bottom-line of the government ledger of assets and liabilities, debt increases further. (No, I am not preferring higher taxes, but rather less grand schemes of government benevolence.)

    The conclusion, from my ultra simple way of viewing things is that it is increasing DEBT that is very much that so-called money gushing into the system. I am not impressed with two-stepping, double-talking, rationalizing economists and politicians who tell me otherwise. In my mind is a blatantly obvious assessment of reality.
    Jul 18, 2012. 10:33 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 29 Hyperinflations In The Last 100 Years: Is The Biggest One Coming?  [View article]
    Thanks for the reply. Your comment about "not losing purchasing power" fairly well covers what my hopes are at this point. Never have had much luck chasing those pots of gold at the end of the rainbows. At various times over the past 4 years I have loaded up in the fund I mentioned (TIPS) by dumping in 465K. I am up 118K on that. I can accept that kind of performance even knowing what is happening to the dollar. I remain baffled though when I hear how foolish I am being. At 64 though, my roller coaster days are (hopefully) coming to an end in a financial sense. By the way, I blew it in my first sentence in my other entry, I meant to say, "This will NOT be an "economically sophisticated" comment," but I suspect that was plainly obvious. Again, thanks.
    Jul 17, 2012. 05:47 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 29 Hyperinflations In The Last 100 Years: Is The Biggest One Coming?  [View article]
    This will be an "economically sophisticated" comment. I look at our unmanageable debt and obligations, and then I look at a bloated government without the discipline to do anything but more of the same. I see printing presses humming away with Monopoly money gushing into the system in one way or another, and I see my dollars worth less because of it...and no end in sight. I hit a brick wall in my mind when the arguments can favor inflation or deflation--this is like not being sure which way the 100 mph train is currently heading. For 4 years now I've been hiding under my bed with the bulk of my assets in Vanguard's VAIPX (TIPS), and I have been pleased with this though of course having loaded up heavily on PMs would have been the better course in hindsight. Nevertheless, I've stayed above water. All along I hear how foolish I am for being in this position. What think ye?
    Jul 17, 2012. 12:35 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Hyperinflation In America: The Dramatic End Of The Dollar?  [View article]
    Whew, no hyperinflation. Just enough to wipe out my retirement savings. Now I feel much better. Actually though--and against what many have consistently told me is a stupid investment--Vanguard's VAIPX fund (TIPS) has served me quite well for 3 years running and I've been able to sleep at nights. More exotic investment alternatives are always tempting, but when reading tea leaves and contemplating Fed speculation become part of the equation this old goat gets quite uneasy.

    I've chased things before that were "rooted firmly" in Dow Theory (thank you Richard Russell, sort of) and such disciplines as Elliott Wave (thank you Bob Prechter, even less so), but somehow subscribing to such seers never quite translated into fully actionable advice that consistently left other less sophisticated investors in the dust.

    I've found that avoiding debt and living modestly are just as important as seeking that secret formula for financial success that always seems to be owned by those who write articles giving advice. Still, it doesn't hurt to observe and think.
    Jun 2, 2012. 03:21 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The 7 Plagues Of Investor Confidence  [View article]
    The flat tire analogy is a good one, but I would add this: the air that the Fed keeps adding is not benign, but caustic. Therefore, not only do we have the leaks that Congress (and the Executive branch to the extent that it sets direction) will not address, but we have "air" that is eating away the tire from the inside. This cannot continue; it cannot end well.
    May 26, 2012. 02:31 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Platinum Trade Resuming?  [View article]
    Kevin...My average (latest) buy-in is at a high $152.36 for PPLT, so even though prior trades worked out fine, this time I'm a bit in the basement so far. I'm staying with it, since I'm not sharp enough on active trading skills to more wisely (or luckily) pick entry & exit points. However, I do appreciate the heads-up for the cross-over alerts with gold & platinum. I'll likely lighten up a bit on my PPLT holdings when (or if) they swap places in the lead again. At this hour the Kitco charts show gold @ 1648 and platinum @ 1553. To me this seems an excessive divergence. Time will tell. Thanks for the information.
    Apr 26, 2012. 05:34 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • What Is Money Flow Telling Us About The Price Direction Of Gold And Silver?  [View article]
    One possible reason that a person would be long SLV while yet suggesting a coming low of $25 is that regardless of which direction SLV heads the (selective) claim can later be made of having made the right call.
    Mar 24, 2012. 01:29 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment