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just sayin'

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  • The Wile E. Coyote Moment Is Coming: Ways To Protect Yourself [View article]
    I want to believe that a significant correction is coming. Maybe I am the only one waiting for some fire sales to buy but I doubt it.

    It would be helpful to know how much cash is sitting around and compare that to the margin borrowing number. The cash positions will support equities when the prices drop as long as bond yields remain low.
    Apr 15 12:15 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Your Investment Returns: Don't Envy The Dows Or The Joneses [View article]
    Every year a friend of mine would crush me on returns. This was not made up as the author suggests - we discussed what investment vehicles were used and how it happened. Well this was a wake up call. I tried adjusting but learned I could not emulate what he was doing so I stuck with my plan. Then came 2008. I took it on the chin and lost like 38% - right near the major indexes. My friend lost over 90%. In 2009 I made like 62% and got all my money back and more. His return was similar to past years though it did not help much since he fell so far.

    I do not use a financial advisor though I recognize there are people where the cost is well worth the benefit from that guidance.
    Apr 7 12:38 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Economic Outlook For Rest Of 2014: Acceleration [View article]
    The question is which consumers? I think some of the excess of loose lending the culminated with the financial crisis has been cleared out. People who have the means and are financially responsible are probably those who are sitting on the actual cash. Those who spend as much as they make are in theory now burdened by less debt since they can't borrow as much against their house and therefore less of their money goes to pay interest and more goes to buy things.

    I suppose those are sitting on a lot of cash could indulge and buy things but this is not automatic.

    With businesses, what portion of that is driven by the banks being required to have so much assets to cover the new banking rules? This is money that has to sit there and could be inflating the total. Again if businesses are less risk averse they are taking on less debt and losing less to pay interest on it. This would generally mean that only projects with the best ROI would be considered and companies would spend less money financing debt which should be a plus also.

    My last comment is how could they not? The treasury has been printing money - it has to go somewhere!
    Apr 6 08:45 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Momentum stocks tumble, Nasdaq plunges 110 [View news story]
    To me the important question is who was buying on 4/4 and why were they buying? If no one was buying we would have crashed for real. This was just a little dent.
    Apr 5 07:39 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What Seeking Alpha Is Doing To Prevent Paid Stock Promotion [View article]
    I would like to read some of these bogus articles to see how convincing they are. I usually follow up my work here with independent analysis I'm wondering how deep it goes.
    Mar 27 06:38 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Freeport-McMoRan: A Few Identifiable Catalysts Are To Lift Valuation [View article]
    1) On the last quarterly conference call I believe there was discussion about reducing staff at Grasberg. Did you hear this also? I do not understand how they could be at 100% operating costs if they were laying people off.

    2) Will there be any economies of scale associated with putting a smelter nearby? Has anyone quantified this? It's not like a $2.3b tax - if they build it they will derive some value I would expect.
    Mar 24 07:10 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Greatest Danger For Stock Investors Today [View article]
    This is an interesting perspective and I agree complacency can be dangerous. After reading this article I submit these thoughts for your consideration:

    "three of the primary asset classes that have historically performed well during periods of stock market stress - long-term U.S. Treasuries (TLT), gold (GLD) and volatility (VXX) - are all outperforming stocks so far in 2014." You might use this as a counter argument by saying that there is skepticism driving investors to diversify into these other classes. I'm thinking treasury yields will need to be significantly higher and gold prices lower before this market ends. Both of these have way too much interest to signal the end.

    At this point does anyone expect another round of QE? I do not. In each of the prior examples of corrections there was background discussion about another round of QE which may have affected the decisions on where to invest.
    Mar 21 08:29 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Freeport-McMoRan: Long-Term Prospects Are Bright For This Miner [View article]
    The cost to produce copper at Grasberg is so low that that FCX (and the rest of the world for that matter) will navigate the treacherous waters of the Indonesian government to get it. Replacing that capacity with capacity from North America will have a significant negative impact on margins.

    Please note that FCX can have some of their material processed in Indonesia as they are part owner of a smelter there.

    It may take a while but I think that ultimately FCX will get a favorable agreement. They are the largest taxpayer to the Indonesian government. I suspect FCX can make do without the revenue longer than Indonesia can. Since the issue is not resolved yet I assume it will have a significant impact on earnings for Q1.

    I also think the cost and production of gold should be included in any thorough analysis of FCX.
    Mar 20 12:09 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Zargon Oil And Gas Is In The Bargain Bin And Ready To Take Off [View article]
    This is a compelling case. After doing some additional research to get more comfortable I have opened a small position.
    Mar 19 12:18 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • This Time It Is Different - Americans Are More Pessimistic [View article]
    At this point if you are correct then we have a long way to go to get to the top.

    FWIW my employer is making record profits and we all got fat bonus checks. I am at record levels of net worth.

    People who need income from their assets can't really buy safe vehicles like CDs because the rates are too low. The HAVE to buy equities or risk losing principal. I know people like this. What I do not know is how many still need to do it.

    I also think that much like the Great Depression left an imprint on people this last financial crisis left an imprint - maybe more shallow but it still left a mark! In 2000 we recovered quickly because people could still borrow against their property equity as we were still in the housing bubble. That ended in 2007. Our banking system was called into question. That will not be forgotten quickly.

    As far as jobs go, I see companies bringing manufacturing jobs back into the US. My employer is investing $1B in a new plant. I read about others making strategic investments here - just heard yesterday Ford is bringing some big truck mfg back into the US. Also with all the new drilling tools we are creating jobs in the oil and gas sector - good paying jobs. On the downside technology continues to reduce the number of low skill jobs. Areas I thought would be safe - like cashiers, stocking shelves, even bank tellers are losing ground to the internet. This is not going to change. I believe it will get worse and I really don't know how to address it. From an altruistic standpoint we need to do something about unemployment though that should not affect the stock market much.

    Great insight in this article - thanks for sharing it.

    At the end of the day I can't get myself to believe it completely. Some time last year I reduced equities to 50% and I am stuck here on the fence. And to me that may be the best argument that you are correct sir.
    Mar 9 10:25 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Yes, The Nasdaq Bubble Is Definitely Here [View article]
    The NASDAQ is made up of a lot more than just those stocks listed. Bob Evans (BOBE) is in there after all and they are not a tech company! I suspect that the main driver of the divergence with the S&P has to be related to these giant tech companies whose prices are filled with speculation. The question I have is are these type of companies taking up a larger percentage of the NASDAQ now than they did in 2000? On top of that do investors have more appetite for risk now or back then?

    I am not certain how much longer this can continue - it might be several years - but one thing I believe is that the speculation will come out. There is no way it is different this time.

    The correlation between AOL and FB is interesting.
    Feb 22 08:48 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Alcoa Is Making Nice With Ford And GM - Shareholders Of All 3 Will Benefit Long Term [View article]
    Based on the metallurgy of the steel in current vehicles I am not concerned about this. They make the metal malleable so it can be stamped into fenders and so it will absorb energy in a crash. I am fairly confident they can achieve similar results with aluminum. The cost I believe is the issue here as well as perception. FWIW GM has been using aluminum subframes since 2006 so I don't really see this as a huge innovation.
    Feb 19 07:52 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Largest Bet Against S&P 500 In History ($1.3 Billion)? [View article]
    Question is how often do Soros big bets go wrong? There has to be significant conviction behind that kind of bet.
    Feb 19 12:00 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Freeport-McMoRan And The Risk From Indonesia [View article]
    It seems to me FCX can survive without adding a smelter and sitting on the raw material - just producing enough that can go through the joint venture smelter. If we are in oversupply of copper globally this would be a smart time to hold back some capacity. Question is can Indonesia govt survive the shortfall on tax revenue? Maybe it is small enough that it will not affect them. The other question is what will Newmont do? If they hold the line also it will put more pressure on the gov't to honor their prior agreements.

    Pricing smelting capacity could be one of many possible strategies being investigated.
    Feb 17 11:30 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Freeport-McMoRan And The Risk From Indonesia [View article]
    Good analysis - thanks for sharing the numbers. This situation has been developing for a while now I have to believe that the scenario you outlined is already largely baked in to the share price. The revenues projected will still be above 2012 levels of $18.010B. Grasberg is clearly the most profitable mine so FCX will work to restore their prior agreement. I am a little concerned that this has not been resolved but there were disruptions there last year they were able to navigate.
    Feb 17 11:17 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment