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johnbee

johnbee
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  • The Truth About Goldman and AIG Becomes Clearer [View article]
    I don't know about ring round the roses but pass the parcel is more like it and AIG and Lehman's got left holding it. Of course it was a high risk game that anyone with the remotest intelligence knew they were playing but they played it because the profits were so huge and greed and denial overcame all propriety and fear; and as it turned out - those who passed the parcel in time were right, as Paulson and their friends bailed them out with taxpayers money. Now they really know they are the masters of the Universe that even Governments bow down to save. It's creepy and unscrupulous - just like the people who work for these banks.
    In the old days they would rightly be strung up by a lynch mob;
    now they just laugh smugly in their 20th Floor fortresses while real businesess and their shareholders and workers suffer.
    Dec 13 02:41 PM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Outlook 2013: Americans Are Going Broke [View article]
    The US now under Obama is now mimicing the UK and Europe where increasigly poor people with little hope of life getting better increasingly vote for a welfare state state to support them which is a self fulfilling catastrophe since there is less money for welfare with less people working unless vast sums are borrowed as per Obama and Europe in a march to total disaster.
    Dec 31 08:29 AM | 14 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Law of Unintended Consequences: 20th Century and Beyond [View article]
    This crash has been coming for 40 years. I am English and 69 now.
    We survived through a war with the rest of Europe. In the '50's there was still food rationing. In the '60's and until the mid '70's you couldn't take more than £20 out of the UK for a holiday until credit cards cashable abroad put an end to it. Up until the mid '80's you couldn't borrow more than 35% on your house or 2.5 times your salary and it was illegal to borrow on more than one house, and you couldn't buy gold. We had many market setbacks. In 1968-1970;1973-1980;19... In all the while inflation took hold and "prosperity" was brought back by yet another fudge which reduced peoples' savings and gave the State more power, usually Socialist governments who had been kicked out but came back with promises of handouts after the Right had restored some economic balance. Each new fudge requiring even greater inflationary stimulus or mirror trick to recover.
    The big Q is if this will be yet another one or has the inevitable moment finally caught up with the spoiled Western populations that can't be postponed yet again? The higher they go the harder they fall and the great majority of countries are only where the West was 40 years ago. With the Internet available it is a surety that in the next two decades the World will equate in time in wages and benefits and that those who work hardest will overtake those who don't. There is no way that pensions in Europe and the US can be paid other than in massively devalued terms as they force uncompetitiveness on to manufacturers. Huge changes will need be made but the baby boomer generation will fight and vote to protect their false expectations against an increasingly angry younger generation who will be told they must expect less and give more.
    Civil unrest and crime and trade wars will naturally follow, and most likely war too. WW1 was a trade war and WW2 a result of inflation induced poverty The world has always been one of survival and the appalling educational standards of the UK and the US for the last 30 years will be seen as their greatest failures against the new ambitions of the East who will use the Internet and wireless technologies to expand their knowledge to good use. If there is one massive problem in the world its the elephant in the room everyone in the West wants to ignore. Too many unproductive people taking from the State. Malthusian economics from the industrial revolution are disowned nowadays but Malthus's theory -that a population and its needs increase at a faster rate than its means and that widespread poverty is the inevitable result - is never more than a step behind us. As for Keynes whose theories are now in vogue,
    his maxim was that in the long run we are all dead- but since he was gay and had no children why did he care? Do we in the West? or would we rather inflict on our children and grandchildren the painful corrections we should suffer ourselves since we have had it so good for so long? If we manage to postpone it again they will face poverty and crime and depression and war as my parents did. Its time to pull in the reins- not to loosen them or we are on a headlong path to total disaster.
    Jan 6 10:11 AM | 13 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Ticking Time Bomb Under The World Economy [View article]
    Here Here. I am English, retired and living in sunny Portugal where work is not taken so seriously as in cold Germany, no needs be.
    They can feed themselves; don't need buy too much electricity as a) they have plenty of sun and b) more wind power than any other country in the world sometimes supply the entire day's usage of electricity.

    The Euro was a bad idea supported by Eurocrats who sought to put the cart before the political end game horse. It has failed miserably and there will be new governments in Latin countries who will in 2014 tell Mrs Merkel to go jump in any repayment to German banks (which will screw Germany) and so Germans will need either support the ECB with guarantees or see the Euro countries split in two which will do Germany no good either as a German Euro will go up enough to kill German exports,
    while the Latins, free of debts, will recover fast and soon find new investment without their debt.
    As with Mexico's recent revival a lot of work that went to China in manufacturing as costs there rise and will come back to Portugal and countries who were screwed by being in the Euro.

    In short Germany will have to give a lot more to support the ECB if the Latins start to look like leaving the Euro, or else let Latin Abenomics get some inflation going. People on this earth are not finished so long as they can work. Every working man knows that and they will not put up with governments that refuse to find them work.
    Jan 3 02:41 PM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How The Fed Directly Subsidizes Corporate Profits And Why The Game Is Over [View article]
    What you say re the State causing the cash for expenditure is correct,
    and has been going on increasingly for years as the State takes a bigger hand over and above private enterprise, but either way the result is the same for company profits, and so supports pensions (at least on the surface).
    The reality is that the solution to over-borrowing by the State, which is largely how it pays for its actions, is always provided by inflation which is paid for by reduction in people's savings and the poorer off with lower comparable wages, in that the State effectively pays back its debts at much reduced cost.
    In the UK £1.00 will now only buy what 1p (one penny) bought in 1900 and 6p in 1940. Like it or not inflation is the natural law in the abcense of economists providing an answer and which politicians try to avoid discussing. Keyne's remark that in the long run we are all dead was his way to say this, for as people die new generations come along that start all over endeavouring to understand the smoke and mirrors of economics which have no further import to those who are dead. A good example is the DOW 100 which constantly changes its constituent companies so that any that are not looking good are disqualified and replace by those who look as if they are going places, with the consequent totally false effect of believing stock markets continually rise over long periods, which they don't. In short life is a percentage game for all in which some stay on the upside of 50% and others don't. The importance to survival of nations or people is to realise this and that are no perfect formulas,
    and in general economics are only any good if those who practise it are good poker players.
    May 23 07:39 AM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • In the two decades through December, the average return of all investors in U.S. stock mutual funds was an annualized 4.25% vs 8.2% for the S&P 500. That translates into a difference of $25,467 for an investment of $10,000. "The dismal truth is that over the long run, the average person is a woeful investor," writes the NYT's Jeff Sommer. [View news story]
    This sort of article really angers me.
    The fact is the DOW Indexes are a fraud in that stocks that look likely to go down are replaced endlessly by stocks those who control of what goes into the Dow think is likely to go up, as it is in their interests to induce people to believe that stock markets always rise in the end.
    Inflation apart they do not, as in reality there is a constant turnover of new companies disrupting the old, and of the 100 companies in Fortune's top 100 some 75 years ago, none are there today and few exist at all.
    The simple answer to investment is that it is necessary to cherry pick and be constantly on the ball, buying and selling and never waiting for a loss to recover itself as they seldom do.
    The huge rises to be seen in Facebook and the few like it are only gotten by those who got in very early in the game and for the average investor this is in itself almost impossible since they have no means of hearing about small stocks (which they are also told are too dangerous to invest in) and in addition the venture capital people get there way before them, and usually only sell to the public very near the top when the public first get a chance to participate.
    Anybody who does not understand this underlying truth of stock markets is living a lie which they will surely regret.
    Mar 10 07:29 AM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why I've Never Trusted This Rally [View article]
    I sold my portfolio a year ago and by reading the Alpha site opinions over the last year -90% of which have been bearish- (with some later retractions)- I have completely missed out on the last 12 months rise and lost 35% of my capital from two years ago. I am sure many many others are in the same boat as myself. We got scared out of the market because as retirees we just could not take any further losses, but since then have had little or no income from investments but are scared to return with fresh rises every day and the thought the market is in all honesty a false one. My experience was based on the 70's crash when the markets were not interfered with by governments on anything like the same scale as this last year, and so the recovery took some years slowed down by high interest rates and inflation.
    What happened this time was that the terrified bankers who might have had to face penury (ha ha) managed to panic the government into saving them and then to manipulate the market by supporting government bonds and currencies and the housing market and to an extent stocks, so that the banks and their friends who were in the know have made yet another killing at the expense of long term private investors and savers. The vast debts incurred by the government with taxpayers money have yet to be paid by savers and the public at large by inflation or taxes over years to come. They should be paid purely at the expense of banks such as Goldman Sachs and their kind, and every penny they make should be confiscated and their salaries taxed to 90%. There is nothing clever in paying interest at 1% and lending it at 10%. Any idiot can do that as well as dream up names for passing bundles of CD's or securitised mortgages round in a game of pass the parcel until they eventually shot themselves in the foot. Yet amazingly they still brazen the government and evebn the Press into believing they should trust them.
    In short I made a mistake. I could not believe that governments everywhere would fall for the bankers line or that they would continue to prop up the market for so long and so massively with massive borrowings. But what happens when interest rates go up and inflation sets in? Then we will truly see the damage done and once again it will be savers and retirees that get destroyed. Nationalise these banks and have them run by people as banks used to run, not by thieves and fraudsters as they are now. who have not one iota of social conscience. They should be jailed and I hope by the time we see the whole of this scenario played out they will be, as they have destroyed the confidence of all investors except themselves since they know they can never fail to be bailed out.
    Apr 26 12:09 PM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why The Gold Rally Depends On U.S Money Base? [View article]
    The reason why the Fed need to keep Gold where it is, is to stop investors selling virtually no interest Govt bonds and buying gold.
    We saw what happened a few months ago when it nealy reached $2,000 and suddenly took a hammering from what appeared to ne massive sales which only a government could make, and it frightened investors out who had been pushing the price up.

    If bonds fall in price as they surely will in time and the $ falling with them , then gold will go up. Meantime it is Fed sales that are keeping the price down around this level, and foreign governments that are taking advantage of the price to buy such as China and Russia as has been declared by them.
    Jul 11 01:37 PM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How the Fed Could Fix The Economy -- And Why It Hasn't [View article]
    The helicopter approach is certainly worth a try as inflation has effectively been the saviour of endless over borrowing in repaying debts at far less value in a way that is not clear to most savers at whose expense it is done.
    The $ today is worth only 2% of its value 100 years ago relative to the price of gold and shows that inflation is the route that nature takes regardless of government game plays and that fighting it with policies that cause deflation as with the round robin of government lending to banks and back again are just spitting in the wind.

    Ultimately people must and will eat, and Atlas Shrugged needs to be prime reading for all economists once more in which if governments can't find a solution the people will.
    Feb 25 08:47 AM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Price Correction Falls Behind Pace Set In 2006 And 2008 [View article]
    What I find odd is that the gold price moves as if it was a commodity along with silver and oil etc and falls and rises with the overall market, when in reality it is a reserve currency for many nations and investors also, as shown by recent major government purchases.

    So at a time when all fiat currencies are at risk from either deflation or inflation and low interest bonds likewise, it would seem to me that gold is a hedge against all other currencies, as it has been for time immemorial as it should also be against falling equity markets
    Jul 2 07:33 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill: Liability Payment Capacity View [View article]
    Talk of nationalistion of BP just shows how bloody arrogant America can get when they have to suffer a little bit of what they so often deal out to the rest of the world with guns and arms. Of course the Gulf spill is a disastrous accident of which anybody in their right mind is totally sympathetic to those affected by it, but it will be many many months if not years before we find out just who out of BP and the platform owners and cement contractors and US Government agencies is to blame, if anyone, which is doubtful.
    An accident is an accident is an accident.
    BP is the biggest single holding of British pension funds whose income to all
    UK pensioners will be cut by 20% if BP dividends are stopped and for all time
    if BP is nationalised. I for one will be the first to ask for the UK to stop any form of alliance with the US in future and let them get on with their own wars, and there are many like me if the US continues on this ridiculous idea that it rules the world and can seize whatever it likes wheever it likes. The US hasn't got many friends left in the world right now; so nationalise BP or seize its dividends and lose another- fast! Want to know about a really serious disaster? Then take a look at Bhopal in India where US chemical interests killed many thousands without compensation.
    Jun 3 10:27 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • So What Are My Vodafone Shares Worth? [View article]
    Agreed. A socialist Europe is a threat to tax low hanging fruit of the Telcos. Same with India and Africa. None of them like capitalists unless they can line their own pockets from other peoples' enterprise.
    Feb 9 06:25 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Velti (VELT -8.3%) adds to yesterday's giant losses after Wells Fargo and Craig-Hallum downgrade shares in response to the company's analyst day remarks. CFO Jeff Ross' comments lead Wells to think "greater discipline on contract quality and geographical mix will have a significant negative impact on both revenue and EBITDA growth in the near-term" - Velti has already said it will divest assets in markets with very high collection times. The firm also notes formal 2013 guidance wasn't provided. [View news story]
    The Company is exactly where it should be in this industry but since their management pocketed a fortune on the IPO they are bent on expansion first and profit later at shareholders' expense.
    They need a new CEO to up their margins and cut their overheads fast and they will be worth £1 billion in three months if they don't get bought out first by Facebook. The new CFO needs show his hand and put the CEO in order along with the Institutions who purchased his shares for their clients. There have been too many elementary mistakes made by an Greek manangement inexperoenced in running a listed company. The CEO needs removing.
    Jan 31 01:20 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Repoed! How The Fed And Depositors Fund Banks' Big Bets [View article]
    I think what was happening was obvious, but not in detail, which this article explains well. The Fed has seen its job as propping up values in equities and bonds and keeping interest rates low to restore confidence, as if not the whole shabang collapses back to 2008, and so it has been a conspiracy of the Fed and its banking members; and so if it is a gamble it is one in which if they had not bought equties and bonds there would be a far worse scenario.
    And so they must continue until confidence returns and people find cash enough to buy homes again, which the Fed will soon start to encourage with a hint of
    inflation which should also provide the argument for equities, if not for bonds.

    As for gold there is constant demand but each time it nears a level the Fed does not like it around $1750 plus it gets pushed back so as not to devalue the $ or bonds by comparison. The Fed a few months ago gave banks the ok to value gold at $1620 (or near it) as a bottom line collateral value which they won't want it to go below. But if the banks have to pull in their reins and bond prices go up and the $ down watch gold go up so fast that even the Fed will not be able to restrain it. Gold is a currency hedge first and foremost, from the begiining of time.
    Jan 14 12:25 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Deutsche Bank: Explaining The $12 Billion Loss That Never Was [View article]
    This argument pretty well covers all Western banks, and many insurance companies also as shown with AIG. Not too sure what the rules are now but in the UK for many years banks and insurance companies have been permitted by law to play around with their accounts so as not to give any great shocks to the system. Many years ago it was huge rserves that were held and hidden; now it seems its just losses.
    At heart this is an ethical problem and can only be resolved when unethical management are removed, and threatened with large fines or jail. This in turn needs ethical government.
    Dec 7 08:37 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
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533 Comments
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