Seeking Alpha

k9s-4-k8

k9s-4-k8
Send Message
View as an RSS Feed
View k9s-4-k8's Comments BY TICKER:
Latest  |  Highest rated
  • Tesla Racing Ahead [View article]
    Racing ahead? We are using that term rather loosely now. While it hasn't yet crashed, its all but certain for anyone with a horizon beyond the next quarter.
    Dec 17, 2010. 02:44 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • For those on a fixed-income needing extra yield, Michael Johnson likes three muni-bond ETFs worth the bet that defaults won’t soar: PowerShares Build America Bond Portfolio (BAB), with most holdings in bonds that won’t mature for at least 15 years regardless of renewal of the BAB program; Market Vectors High-Yield Municipal ETF (HYD); and iShares S&P National Municipal Bond Fund (MUB).  [View news story]
    Beware of any muni etfs or muni closed end funds that leverage their portfolio for a better return. If short term interest rates start rising you could get creamed due to the construction of leveraged muni funds.
    Dec 17, 2010. 02:42 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • In what is easily the biggest settlement so far of matters Madoff, the estate of philanthropist Jeffry Picower (who died last fall in the midst of the litigation) will pay victims of Bernie Madoff's Ponzi scheme $7.2B - the full amount that trustee Irving Picard originally sought, and also what Picower withdrew over a few decades. It quadruples what victims have received to date.  [View news story]
    I wonder if that thumb down was from Bernie or Ruth Madoff.
    Dec 17, 2010. 01:49 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A possible government shutdown is looming at midnight Saturday as Senate Republicans and Democrats ratchet up a standoff over a $1.1T spending bill. Republicans propose a bill to fund the government through mid-February - when they'll have more members; Democrats say they'll have none of it.  [View news story]
    My vote is for a shut down of government. There's better than half a chance snow will shut down dc anyway so why pay for it? Only the Senate could shut down this resolution. The Congress has done passed this without even voting.
    Dec 16, 2010. 06:58 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Geithner says the Obama administration would block any move to narrow the Fed's dual mandate to a single focus on battling inflation. The Fed's $600B bond buying plan is within its mandate, Geithner says, warning Republicans to "keep politics out of monetary policy."  [View news story]
    Coming attractions include Bill Clinton lecturing us on staying true to your spouse followed by Barack Obama lecturing us on nonparisanship in politics. Dropped from the program are the tag team lecturers of Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton teaching us on tolerance of all races, and equality for all but we will still finish out the evening with Joe Biden teaching all you College students on how to ethically earn your degree by simply pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps.
    Nov 19, 2010. 11:29 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Small 'I-Told-You-So' on Bank Stocks [View article]
    In a Utopian capitalist economy, banks wouldn't depend upon the Fed for their bread and butter. But who can make the case that we ought to pursue a Utopian capitalist economy by first cutting the Fed window? The only question then might be what bank can avoid failure, or should we ask how long will the resulting disruption in the economy extend or maybe, how much will it cost taxpayers when Sheila Bare moves the troops in?
    Jul 19, 2010. 11:47 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Bank of America: Why It's Scary Being a Bank in America [View article]
    Banks have differing profit margins on all the various types of business they pursue. Now that their potential income streams have been slashed, and costs of doing business have risen significantly, we can expect a bump in the cost of access to capital, especially from those that don't have AAA credit. The fallout of unintended consequences will likely be huge, and disastrous to a recovering economy. Let us not forget, the still undone work of rulemaking regarding Finreg will take years and heavy banking lobbying ($$$) to reverse the threat to banking. This has been nothing more than an exercise in futility.
    Jul 19, 2010. 11:23 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • General Motors is reportedly preparing for an IPO of 20% of Treasury's stake, which would reduce the U.S. to a minority ownership in the automaker. An August registration could mean a November sale that would raise more than $10B.  [View news story]
    Part of any investor interest will be banking on the government providing GM with more assistance as needed.
    Jun 23, 2010. 01:02 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Russian President Medvedev heads to Silicon Valley today for a flash tour, calling the tech hub a "quite interesting" model that Russia could follow. A U.S. official says the visit could help Russia improve its intellectual property protection, a key step towards gaining WTO membership.  [View news story]
    "A U.S. official says the visit could help Russia improve its intellectual property protection, a key step towards gaining WTO membership. "

    Well, if that isn't a pipe dream.
    Jun 23, 2010. 12:20 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Drilling down: The most recently available financial disclosure report shows that Martin Feldman, the judge that yesterday overturned the deepwater drilling ban, owned stock in Transocean (RIG), Halliburton (HAL) and several other oil and gas firms. Feldman declined to clarify which positions, if any, he still holds.  [View news story]
    Turns out he only had $15000 invested in the oil sector. The media failed to provide necessary details.
    Jun 23, 2010. 12:18 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Vehicle miles driven in February fell 2.9% from the year-ago period, the Department of Transportation says, marking the second month in a row of year-over-year declines. If the trend continues, it could mean that high gasoline prices are starting to impact the economy.  [View news story]
    The unemployment rate was 7.7 in Jan 2009 and 8.2 in Feb 2009 not to mention the even larger difference in the jobless rate which measures those no longer looking for work. So, why conclude its the price of gas and not just do to more channel surfing.
    Apr 20, 2010. 03:28 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The SEC is reviewing whether new rules are needed to stop Wall Street banks from reducing borrowing at the end of a quarter and boosting it later, Chairman Schapiro tells a congressional hearing. She says the agency is concerned banks are "dressing up the balance sheet" just before they disclose financial results to shareholders.  [View news story]
    Yes, max/min would eliminate any reason to play around with snapshots at the end of the quarter.
    Apr 20, 2010. 03:15 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The SEC is reviewing whether new rules are needed to stop Wall Street banks from reducing borrowing at the end of a quarter and boosting it later, Chairman Schapiro tells a congressional hearing. She says the agency is concerned banks are "dressing up the balance sheet" just before they disclose financial results to shareholders.  [View news story]
    Why is this surprising to the SEC? It was the SEC under her that dropped mark to market. This is just the other side of the same coin.
    Apr 20, 2010. 03:12 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • S&P and Moody’s (MCO) blessed the Goldman (GS) Abacus deal, giving it their highest rating. Yet it became one of the worst-performing mortgage deals of the housing crisis, serving as Exhibit A for what went wrong with the ratings services.  [View news story]
    Actually, I don't see a downgrading of a AAA security as proof of gross incompetence, necessarily. What I see as more important is:

    The rating agencies have a conflict of interest. They are paid by the issuers for the ratings of bonds sold by the issuers.

    A now 2 year old report by the SEC into the ratings agencies that revealed a lack of disclosure to investors and the public, and a lack of policies and procedures.

    From 2002 to 2006, the volume of RMBS and CDO deals increased substantially as did the revenues the firms derived from these ratings. During that time however, staffing did not follow.

    Then there's the internal emails between associates.
    “Let’s hope we are all wealthy and retired by the time this house of cards falters......”
    In another email, according to the report, following a discussion of a competitor’s market share, an employee of the same firm states that aspects of the firm’s ratings methodology would have to be revisited to recapture market share from the competing rating agency. An additional email by an employee stated, following a discussion of losing a rating to a competitor, “I had a discussion with the team leaders here and we think that the only way to compete is to have a paradigm shift in thinking, especially with the interest rate risk.”

    Lastly, there was that infamous quote taken from one email where two analysts were concerned whether they ought to rate a particular deal. One analyst expressed concern that her firm’s model did not capture “half” of the deal’s risk, but that “it could be structured by cows and we would rate it.”

    All of this adds up to more than incompetence.
    Apr 20, 2010. 02:47 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Goldman Sachs (GS) has deregistered Fabrice Tourre with the U.K.'s Financial Services Authority, saying the VP named in Friday's SEC complaint is on indefinite paid leave and therefore wouldn't need to interact with Goldman clients.  [View news story]
    The guy isn't going to have any time for anything but spending his days with Goldman attorneys anyway.
    Apr 20, 2010. 01:46 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
COMMENTS STATS
166 Comments
210 Likes