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tripleblack

tripleblack
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  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    Pro-business administration in India has a chance to turn it around, but this has happened before, with mixed results. I consider regulations regarding gold imports and infrastructure build-out to be key items to watch for signs of shifts in policy.

    India is in an excellent position to capitalize on the dramatic drop in energy and industrial commodity prices, to an extent greater than China (who after all is a dominant producer of many commodities). Alone among BRIC, India will gain from the current commodity crash rather than lose.

    Should the commodity markets rebound, however, India will move in the opposite direction, essentially swapping places with BRC.

    Given that we are seeing signs of the Saudis easing their oil war (reports of higher prices from them this week), the India headlines might represent a peak rather than a long term trend.
    Mar 5, 2015. 09:16 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    Might be a good time to bail. Immelt's inside the beltway (inner circle of administration cronies) influence will probably either disappear with his departure or terminate with the 2016 elections, whichever comes first.
    Mar 4, 2015. 09:52 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    Significant.
    Mar 4, 2015. 09:48 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    That's about right, LT. Adjusted back to the 1964 baseline (I like to use a longer timeline, but this one is very good) the S&P has averaged a growth rate of 3 points per year, or very roughly about 3% per year.

    Remove the compound interest portion of the equation, and its much worse. Return the $ to a much less petro-dollar inflated condition...
    Mar 2, 2015. 11:44 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    In my view, negative rate bond issues (particularly of this wide spread magnitude) portend a large fiscal disaster is anticipated, and not long in the future.

    It is also the death of the carry trade for those polities, of course, and that very well COULD be instrumental in triggering whatever "accident" befalls them.
    Mar 2, 2015. 11:24 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stability Of The European Union (23) January 1, 2015. [View instapost]
    Interesting phrase: "...can be..."

    One must wonder which more equal pigs will skate, which group will lose investments, and which will also be forced to return funds recently (or long ago) received as withdrawals of principal or payment of interest on the debt.

    Excellent example of "nuanced European regulation". We will probably never learn precisely whose ox gets gored. It also occurs to me that barring a requirement in the "...can be..." regulation that full disclosure of events be released, they could make this sort of stern threat and then quietly bail out the insiders as usual, thus having their public honest government face preserved while protecting Those Who Count.
    Mar 2, 2015. 11:07 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    Major sea currents do, indeed, change from time to time, but take about 500 years to do so (think of a VERY long and heavy freight train trying to stop on a dime). If they changed this year, some factor in the 1500's probably initiated the event.

    Of course, major earthquakes and the odd cometary impact can also do this, and quicker, but this does not seem to be one of those occasions.
    Feb 26, 2015. 08:42 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    I have been expecting the Federal government to start selling extremely short time period debt instruments, perhaps via some sort of ETF-ish mechanism. Talk about a TBTF bank...
    Feb 25, 2015. 05:27 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    I believe Buffett is no longer an investor, he's now making moves that have more to do with his politics (which turn out to be far different from estimates made when he was younger) than making money.

    I do not think following his investment actions is a good idea any longer.
    Feb 25, 2015. 03:34 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    Agreed, LT.

    I have been looking at the currency wars for years, and the pundits persist in overlooking the importance of currency exchange rates and their role as key geopolitical tools. Fears of rising interest rates (seemingly always just hours away) must be viewed with deep skepticism when they appear with no supportive overview of the planetary currency markets.

    It would seem that they cannot see the currency markets for all the trees, er, dollars standing in the way.

    Quote from one of my more recent such observations last July: "With China building the world's largest Cartel structure hand over chop stick, and the EU about to sport some major defections (UK, of course, but others could follow, even some that voted for Juncker), and currency wars getting hotter and hotter...

    Protectionism is coming, and soon."
    Feb 25, 2015. 11:50 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    Its important to remember how these all cash transactions CAN (though not always) work...

    Money laundering is, indeed, often the goal. Buy a house for an inflated price from the group or person you need to help/bribe/repay, and voila, the deed is done quietly and "legally". The reverse also works, ie, sell a valuable property for less than its value, etc, etc...
    Feb 23, 2015. 03:28 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    The niobium story is an interesting tale. The largest developed deposit (and source for a large percentage of the planet's supply) is in Brazil (family run and uninvestible, however, and I would not invest in this particular family regardless). The 2nd largest known deposit is the Lynas Mount Weld mine (also very rich REE deposit, which is what they are currently working open pit). Also contains high amounts of tantalum, some titanium (as I recall) and of course, niobium. A geologic unicorn, this mine. Also a poster child mine for geopolitical whipping boy.

    As they dig deeper, the deposits mixed with REEs shift to what is called the Crown Deposit, which has the niobium/etc. jackpot ore.

    The other current source for niobium is Russia, which has long mined the ore, and oddly enough, processed it through a company (Silmet) which is now owned and operated by MolyCorp in eastern Europe.

    I would urge caution in ANY American pre-development mining projects, since the US (pre-current EPA) was averaging in excess of 11 years of bureaucratic red tape AFTER serious work had already occurred to document a viable mining effort. The estimate for this process is now even more questionable, given that the EPA has recently become more hostile to mining in general.

    Niobium price discovery is suspect, imo, given that the bulk of the supply for the West comes from a single source run as a virtual monopoly. Forward-looking estimates for the value of a niobium deposit in situ are thus equally suspect.
    Feb 18, 2015. 05:52 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    Key strategic metals I am watching with recent gains (running against the tide for commodities in general):

    http://bit.ly/1Alv0fP

    http://bit.ly/1oJ0tSo

    http://bit.ly/1Alv0w4

    http://bit.ly/1Alv0w6

    http://bit.ly/1Alv1Aq

    Titanium prices have been soft for a long time, but just showed a strong jump upward for March 1 delivery...
    Feb 18, 2015. 12:06 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    Prior to the recent elections, an old buddy and I were discussing the potential ramifications of a Democratic Party loss, and the impact on union negotiations (both of us once participated in such negotiations back when we were working for the same industry). He still consults on such things, and told me that many major unions are likely to use the current union-friendly administration to secure long rang contracts on beneficial terms.

    We were not looking at the Longshoremen in particular, but this situation is not surprising, and likely to be followed by other such events as the contract cycle heats up.
    Feb 18, 2015. 10:10 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stability Of The European Union (23) January 1, 2015. [View instapost]
    Interesting question, still...

    Don't miss the underlying conditions, though. Nigel is railing against the EU. An American would be railing against the Federal government...

    Secession?

    There are a number of voices speaking out in these terms, but our media cannot consider the topic seriously. I wonder how seriously the euro elites are taking Nigel, success with predictions or not.
    Feb 18, 2015. 08:42 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
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