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  • Concerning The Performance Of Individual Investors [View article]
    good stuff. The trope about the average individual investor overtrading and underperforming was way overdue for some more detailed breakdown.
    May 1, 2014. 12:25 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • An Intuitive Method For Ranking Stocks [View article]
    Very nice. Where are you getting your data?

    Reminds me a lot of "What Works on Wall Street" by O'Shaughnessey except he is a big believer in back testing, which as you point out, tends to imply using them for blind formula investing.

    Apr 30, 2014. 11:21 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How Much Does Seeking Alpha Pay Its Contributors? [View article]
    >> Does it happen only with options articles?
    Emphatically not.

    >>How many times you clicked on the title only to find out that the article is not what you hoped it to be?

    Frequently. I wish they'd show the author in the list-line too for example.

    >> I really don't see it as a big deal if you clicked on the title and wasted >> 10 seconds of your valuable time.

    The big deal is that in the 2 minutes I spend scanning the site for new posts that interest me, I can only scan 10 or 20 headlines instead of 100 or 150.

    Apr 14, 2014. 11:36 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • How Much Does Seeking Alpha Pay Its Contributors? [View article]
    I am one of those who is not interested in reading
    about options, or at least not much, and I'd find it
    annoying to be clicking on a line item from Latest
    Articles or Top Ideas only to find it is actually
    about options.

    So I would be mildly against reintroducing options
    coverage unless it were under some separate part
    of the site.

    Plus I agree with Eli that options are well covered
    elsewhere, perhaps because it is more technical and
    short-term, whereas the kind of fundamental analysis
    of stocks that the better SA articles provide is scarcer.

    Apr 14, 2014. 10:21 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tronox - Time To Focus On The Future [View article]
    Oh well. Wish I could afford that (:-)
    Apr 11, 2014. 10:12 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tronox - Time To Focus On The Future [View article]
    Where do you find TiO2 prices in yuan?
    Apr 11, 2014. 07:36 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tronox - Time To Focus On The Future [View article]

    You evaluated based on "adjusted" EBITDA. Did this number come
    from pro forma statements by Tronox in their filing? Can you say
    what the adjustments were for?

    It would be nice to have some notion of what all those NOL's are
    actually worth. What are the prospects for being able to use them?
    Looking at their 2013 results (on Yahoo), they had a pre-tax loss in
    2013 of $61 MM but nevertheless paid $29 MM in taxes. How much
    NOL's did they use, and different would their taxes have been if they
    had none?

    I got interested in TROX because of Meryl Witmer's recommendation
    in a Barrons' roundtable a while back. Recently I tried hard to find a
    13F on her holdings but failed. Perhaps her fund is offshore, or maybe
    I just never found the right company code on the SEC site.
    Does anyone know how to find this info?

    Good article; thank you

    Apr 11, 2014. 04:31 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How Much Does Seeking Alpha Pay Its Contributors? [View article]

    I would just love to see a collaborative filtering (CF) front-end that
    allowed me to develop a profile of articles I most want to read.

    If the CF was any good, it could infer that I am interested in an article
    (one I have never seen) based not only on what I have shown an
    interest in in the past (particular authors, tickers, or keywords like
    BDC) but also on the basis that my taste is very similar to so-and-so
    and he liked that article, so I might too. This is just a variation of
    what Amazon does: people who bought this also bought that.

    The output of the CF should then be used to replace that somewhat
    annoying "Top Articles" bubbler at the top center of the home page.

    (It annoys me because it bubbles too fast to read; there is no obvious
    way to say, hey wait, what was that one that just disappeared;
    I have to click on the article to find out who wrote it, and if it's
    some windbag I hate, I've already given him a click, etc.
    In general, I'm just not in control.)

    What I'd like is something interactive to allow me to browse
    down the list of articles that the CF thinks I'd want to read,
    organized by my predicted level of interest, with a filter grid
    on the side (author, ticker, keyword, etc). Of course it should
    throw in a random pick now and then to keep me from going
    too stale and only reading my favorite contributors.

    Apr 10, 2014. 11:05 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How Much Does Seeking Alpha Pay Its Contributors? [View article]
    Amen to that.
    Apr 10, 2014. 10:49 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Investors Are Falling For Indonesia Again [View article]
    Excellent article. Thank you.
    Mar 23, 2014. 11:04 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Ascent Capital Is Unmonitored Even With A 20% Free Cash Flow Yield [View article]
    Patrick Wolf, former chess grandmaster and now a hedgie, writes briefly in Barrons (out today) about ADT, which he is short. His remarks mostly apply to the industry as a whole, IMO, and hence are pertinent here. Summary:

    The shift from wired to wifi lowers barriers to entry. Telco's & cable co's are getting into the biz and will destroy margins, because they don't need to make a profit on it, it's just another add-on in their service bundle, which they can include at cost, and they still benefit if it reduces their churn. So,

    "ADT is facing a onslaught of very well-capitalized, new competitors with lower break-even economics. I'm not a genius, but that is a recipe for disaster."

    As to valuation: ADT used to be expensive, is now "fairly valued, relative to its earnings power, but I think their earnings power is in trouble. So it trades around 16 times earnings with high leverage."

    [Barrons', annoyingly, never says when its interviews took place. The "16 times" does seem to confirm that it was after the big drop in ADT, and Ascent, in late Jan.]
    Mar 8, 2014. 11:03 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Betting On J.C. Penney's Stagnation [View article]
    Rational E,

    Thanks for the article.

    I've seen this idea referred to often (short the stock, buy the bonds of a company whose bankruptcy is in play).

    This is technically tricky to pull off, however, and the suggestion usually
    comes with no detail at all about how to execute. You at least described a
    principled approach to computing how much stock to short against a given
    amount of bonds.

    But now for the hard question: when to unwind the trade, or one half of it, or rebalance?

    Example: Say the stock is at $9, the beta is 3, so for each share of stock
    that you short, you buy $27 worth of bonds. That's your method, right?

    Now suppose JCP spirals in closer to the drain. Say it goes to $6. If the hedge works, your bonds are down $3 too, to $24 of bonds per share shorted. So now you own 24/6 = 4 times as much bonds as stock. You are now over-exposed in bonds and have to short more stock, or sell some bonds, if you want to restore the 3:1 ratio.

    The same problem arises in reverse if the stock goes up, except that it is not limited by zero. You'd have to cover part of your short at a loss to maintain a constant 3:1 ratio.

    Of course, the beta may be moving around too, all this time.

    This is the point where I begin to feel like that passenger on an airplane when the pilot came back and asked if anybody had a phone with a GPS. What's the rest of the plan?

    Mar 5, 2014. 06:27 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Commodities Are Soaring [View instapost]

    The index shown in your $CRB Stockcharts chart is precisely known as the "Thomson Reuters / CoreCommodity CRB Index".

    This can be definitively identified as the one you referred to at, where the index sponsors have a charting tool; if you set the dates to March 2011 to present, it matches the chart you showed.

    As far as I can tell, neither Google nor Yahoo have any symbol that shows this index. It looks like Bloomberg uses CRY:IND.

    As far as I can tell, there is no ETF that tracks this index, which I find pretty surprising. (I wasn't looking to invest in it; I just wanted a quoteable proxy.) The ETF finder on SA says one is "pending". Note that CRBQ is not based on this index, but rather on the Thomson Reuters/Jefferies In-the-Ground CRB Global Commodity Equity Index.

    If anyone knows of a yahoo/google symbol or an ETF, please post.

    Feb 28, 2014. 01:42 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Dream Dreaming On Going Higher [View article]
    Thanks. Very strange, I swear the SEDAR query is returning stuff today that the same query did not return last night. Yesterday I was hitting CanaDream, which is something other company, and nothing else; today it returns that as well as Dream Unlimited.

    Anyway, I found it.

    Feb 28, 2014. 12:05 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Dream Dreaming On Going Higher [View article]

    For US Stocks, you get the 10-K's and suchlike from Edgar or

    I tried SEDAR and can't even find DRUNF.

    Where do you go to get their financial reports?

    Feb 27, 2014. 11:30 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment