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  • The European investigation (I, II) into oil benchmark pricing raises rarely voiced questions about the appropriate way to set prices. FT notes that Platts' reporters cover 400+ wholesale energy prices everyday and the information available to them is limited to what commodities houses and Big Oil are willing to disclose. The process is complicated by the fact that myriad factors ranging from small discrepancies in quality to the type of hull on transport tankers, make the process inherently subjective. Nevertheless, the ordeal looks quite a bit like the Libor and ISDAFIX probes: a benchmark to which trillions of dollars of assets are tied is determined by key players away from the public eye. [View news story]
    For an excellent article on oil pricing, see this one by Kyle Spencer on November 2, 2012.
    May 18, 2013. 07:11 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Romanian Teenager Wins Big for Low-Cost, Self-Driving Car Innovation [View article]
    No Browns, Joneses, or Smiths to be seen.
    May 17, 2013. 07:19 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Will The Sleeping Hare Win? [View article]
    Put the blame on Microsoft. The only reason I haven't updated my desktop computer from XP is because I have several DOS programs that I dearly love and use each and every every day that won't run on Windows 7 or 8 without a software addition/upgrade to W7 or W8 which is more expensive than the original program's cost.

    So in the meantime, I use my laptop for all the routine light work, and my desktop for the DOS programs and activities that are better suited for a large screen and full size keyboard. And the XP desktop works as an adequate server.

    Could I live without the DOS programs? Of course. Would I spend money to lose their functionality? Not a chance. Sorry Microsoft.

    May 15, 2013. 08:53 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Real Experiment That Is Being Carried Out In Japan [View article]
    One thing that continues to escape me is that no one ever mentions how the general population if Japan is faring after more than 20 years of deflation.

    We constantly hear of the high rate of unemployment in southern Europe, the deficits there, this crisis, that crisis, and how the people are suffering, the list goes on.

    But Japan? GDP not growing, or at least not growing up to economist's expectations, is such a horror. The evils of deflation abound and nothing seems to work!

    So someone tell me. How are the Japanese people coping after twenty-some years?
    May 14, 2013. 08:53 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • This Asset Bubble: The Difference Is... [View article]
    I don't know why some focus on quarter over quarter comparisons as I consider them pretty much useless. You wouldn't use quarter over quarter comparisons for temperature or weather would you?

    For the year ending April 30, 2012, the DJIA earnings per share trailing 12 months were $118.44 and the then current year to date were $139.77 with P/Es of 14.74 and 12.49 respectively.

    For the year ending April 30, 2013, the DJIA earnings per share trailing 12 months were 122.87 and the now current year to date were $144.80 with P/Es of 15.73 and 13.35 respectively.

    That relates to a TTM 3.74% gain and 3.59%. Not great, but certainly not declining and not an asset bubble.

    All calculations based on data from Yahoo Finance.
    May 14, 2013. 02:24 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Intel: Busting Another False Myth [View article]

    I really appreciate your hard work and insight.

    But, I cringe every time I see phrases like:
    “Oh, and don't forget that Intel's transistors are much smaller than the competitions' ...”
    “Oh, and TSMC's "16nm" is really 16nm FinFETs ...”

    as it it's an afterthought. That phraseology seems to be in vogue nowadays but why not just leave off the "Oh," since we all know it's not an afterthought, just the current fad in Internet speak.

    And did I mention, I really appreciate your hard work and insight?
    May 11, 2013. 08:44 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • 3 Ways The Dow Is Lying - What Does It Mean? [View article]
    I don't understand your analogy.

    Some people, in order to put on a negative spin, like to rewrite history by adjusting numbers to reflect inflation, reflect the price of gold, allow for currency fluctuations if they live in a foreign country, the list goes on.

    I disagree with that philosophy though it should be recognized that inflation takes it's toll on any asset, including gold if you're inclined to invest in gold. Maybe the article should have been titled "3 ways gold is lying".

    But the point of my post was that the "3 ways the dow is lying" has absolutely nothing to do with the Dow, the S&P500, gold, Apple stock, or my car.
    May 3, 2013. 11:25 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 3 Ways The Dow Is Lying - What Does It Mean? [View article]
    The DJIA is not lying. It shows the price of the 30 stocks compared to some previous point in time. Nothing more, nothing less.

    Don't blame inflation on the "Dow". It has nothing to do with it.

    Don't blame the unemployment rate on the "Dow". It has nothing to do with it.

    Don't blame the employment/population ratio on the "Dow". It has nothing to do with it.

    More and more I'm disappointed with the quality and content of articles posted on Seeking Alpha.

    The "Dow" does an excellent job for what it was designed to do. Trying to use a hammer when a screwdriver is required is a fault of the user, not the tool.
    May 2, 2013. 07:48 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Food Stamps: The Most Accurate Economic Indicator [View article]
    You may be right. Since March 2009 the number of recipients on food stamps has pretty much risen in lockstep with the markets.

    Now it looks to me like the increase of recipients has started to level off.

    Should the number of recipients start to decline, maybe the markets will too.

    Or did I misunderstand your article?
    Apr 25, 2013. 07:50 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Record Demand Lifts Gold Prices, U.S. Mint Suspends Sales [View article]
    One has to ask: Is it a production problem or a supply problem?

    There seems to be more supply than demand since the price of gold had declined so much. I'd say it may be a production problem or a balancing of inventories.
    Apr 24, 2013. 08:33 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • U.S. Government's New Way Of Calculating GDP [View article]
    Re: "As this adjustment in GDP calculation is pretty significant, I will discuss the new items in the U.S. GDP, what the consequences are and how investors should act on this revision in statistics."

    There are no consequences for investors. Investors buy companies they believe will be profitable in the future and will increase in value and return dividends or capital gains to shareholders.

    Traders and speculators may be affected if they think they have an edge because they use models that use GDP, but in reality, it's just an academic exercise.

    To buy or sell a business based upon its relationship to GDP doesn't make sense.
    Apr 24, 2013. 08:22 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Your Market Come Back? [View article]
    So am I to believe Sy's picks from 1990 or whenever are his benchmarks?

    And they have all came back? And he didn't change with the changing times?

    Or is that his point? Not clear to me.
    Apr 17, 2013. 08:05 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is The U.S. Economy In Trouble? [View article]
    Okay, I finally went to the Zerohedge website.

    Your referenced chart appears to be, but not labeled as such, to be some sort of monthly change, not total sales. Look at the first two charts and compare the volume numbers with the referenced chart.

    I don't think I'm the one that has a problem.
    Apr 10, 2013. 09:09 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is The U.S. Economy In Trouble? [View article]
    Doug Short seems to disagree with Zerohedge.

    But who the hell is he?
    Apr 10, 2013. 08:41 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is The U.S. Economy In Trouble? [View article]
    Whenever I see a statistic that shows such a dramatic change, i.e., over 50% drop, I go back and question the source.

    Do you really believe gasoline consumption was cut in half in the last 6 years? All while the population was increasing.
    Apr 9, 2013. 01:51 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment