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  • How to Profit From the Expanding Propane Problem [View article]
    Look up north in Canada Norman: Superior Plus Corp (TSE:SPB) is a major propane player and offers a steady great 10% dividend around 11$CAD/share. They've already converted out of of an income trust so no pains there!

    I'm going with X Oil Man (thanks for the technical explanation) as I've seen propane supply as highly correlated to natural gas supply (and subsequently prices as well).
    Nov 9 10:41 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • When will the FIAT Fairies call it Quits? [View instapost]
    I find the debate over gold and fiat money very comical. On one side you have the gold bugs who proclaim that gold is "real" and fiat money is not. On the other side, one predominately underrepresented and so I will attempt to add their side to this debate, you have the FX traders who have no concept of what is real or not as a store of value. Gold, like paper, is worth only that value which you place on it. People require common currency as much as physicists require the common measurements of length, mass and time. There is a difference between currency and fiat money in that currency can be either gold or fiat money. It is a flow of exchange, not the medium. So why gold or fiat money instead of another commodity like land or even food? Everything is relative when you talk about storing your wealth in a medium (whether material or not). In the FX world demand is a lot quicker to respond to changes in supply (e.g. quantitative easing) or demand (e.g. trade imbalance) factors because the very nature of fiat money and FX markets make it incredibly liquid. In gold we see that its recent surge in demand is driven primarily by fear and not sound judgement. Reason would have it that gold is not as liquid as fiat money and much more difficult to quickly alter its supply. In light of this it faces price fluctuations and changes in perceived volatility greater than that in the FX markets. Why? Because fiat money responds quicker to information and in a systematic way. It is so fast to adjust that it is very difficult to catch other traders sleeping at their desk. The gold bugs are awash with emotion and their judgement is clouded for they always seem to forget that gold, like anything else including fiat money, is a commodity. They are synonymous and the mere notions of liquidity and variance are reason enough to not worry about fiat money or the effects of its depreciation. Everyone knows that stationary money devalues which ensures it moves (velocity of money). In this gold differs, but play your cards right (ensure alpha greater than appreciation or depreciation of gold to fiat money - both have regularly happened in history) and you start to realize how inflexible gold really is.

    I sure would like to see some numbers compare velocity of gold with those of other commodities adjusting for increases/decreasing in tradable supply. This might reveal whether people are starting to treat gold like a savings vehicle or just a temporary alternative to fiat money.
    Sep 22 06:25 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Key Property Charts to Make Sense of This Week’s Housing Numbers [View article]
    John G
    You can do your own analysis for Victoria by looking on craigslist. Rents have dropped dramatically. Also, some condo developments have been put on hold until they can sell more units. Check out for great updates on Victoria construction and municipal meetings. One thing I see is a large amount of investment condos owned by Americans that prefer to hold and do nothing because right now Vancouver and Victoria real estate is the best damn investment one can have. Sure, not many buyers right now, but heck this is one of the best damn places on earth to live. Give it 5 years to blow over, but come October we should see a little drop in prices and a buying opportunity. I even had my real estate agents tell me this - a real estate agent telling you NOT to buy yet?!
    Jun 24 11:11 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Canadian Dividend Stocks: Still Well Priced [View article]
    Jun 18 02:32 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Closer Look at Umpqua and the Regional Banking Sector [View article]
    "arduous" is an understatement, very difficult analysis to undertake, thanks and keep it up
    Apr 10 11:20 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What 1200 Means for the S&P [View article]
    Banks don't make their money anymore from consumer loans, mortgages or deposit accounts. Everyone is going the 'wealth management' route which is finding rich peoples' money and leveraging/trading it, taking their cut in the process for better or worse. They will not be concerned with their customers being charged interest, erroneous fees or penalties and your supposed negative effects from strong earnings reports.

    In regards to your second paragraph, have you ever found a banker who was NOT profit motivated? Sure, maybe in credit unions, but not where all the trillions are. MY primary indicator is cash employee bonuses for banks, because without happy minions the big banks won't be able to continue doing what they're doing. And at that moment, the yellow brick road will seem all that more certain to follow. Hopefully gold's short-term bubble will burst back down to 1050 with the anticipated solid finish to the expected good earnings reports. Gold investors are generally the most scared of them all.

    Until then, I'm long wireless, semiconductors, food distribution, nat gas and uranium (very long) with an eye on nickel. A pretty eclectic mix. I don't depend on stock markets for my paycheque. Short-term long GBP primarily because my funds were in CAD for the last four months. Made some plays with my CHF on the EUR via some covered calls until Greece gets sorted out.
    Apr 10 11:09 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • High Conviction: This Stock Pick Won Cara Goldenberg Dinner With Warren Buffett [View article]
    Free in-depth analysises on top-ten conviction picks from hundreds of copycats, who wouldn't want that at their fingertips even if you are WB or not. I wish I had that can to open.
    Feb 24 02:25 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The Future of the Lithium Market, Part II [View article]
    Have you seen the infrastructure in Uyuni? It'll take 20 years just to build that seeing as concrete is the standard road material at 4000m. Add to that no access to the sea (as we have seen with profits sucked up in transportation costs at Lima through the coffee trade out of the Yungas) and obvious political problems (Bolivian social class struggles), and it becomes apparent that any lithium prospects in this region will not be realized for over 20 years even with your recommendations. This is a multi-billion dollar project and Bolivia's oil revenues won't be able to front that bill, nor will private investment want to with a fragmented political base.
    Feb 16 11:48 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Trading Week Outlook: February 14 - 19, 2010 [View article]
    Thank you, very complete.
    Feb 14 11:37 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Large-Cap Stocks and Covered Calls Are Key to 2010 Outperformance - Fund Manager Tyler Vernon [View article]
    Many mid-caps with historic high dividends (8-12%) are attractive right now.

    Covered calls are a great revenue stream if you think the market has flat-lined - we haven't seen much of that as of late. The collar (buy put OTM, sell covered call) strategy is a great risk management tool but become harder to do with the lower cap companies as the premiums become difficult to manage for the average joe.
    Feb 8 11:36 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Brazil and India Need to Save More [View article]
    Brazil's credit culture is completely different than any other country in the world. I strongly urge any analysis of developing countries to go beyond quantitative and first start with qualitative assessments, then build your quantitative models as proof of how they best can develop (economic growth theory is inherently flawed, especially in Latin America). The vast majority of Brazilians have tabs at their local grocery, hardware and any other store they frequent on a regular basis. When they get their paycheque they go to these stores and pay off their tabs. Essentially the stores are micro-credit institutions, making it nearly impossible to foster a culture of saving to invest. Remember, savings is not a necessary requirement for investment. In my opinion, this is a more direct way of investment whereby the stores are building into their pricing credit risk, reaping premiums for investment without banks taking their cuts. Read any report coming out of the central bank down there. These views are from my personal experiences working with credit in the favelas of Sao Paolo. Puts all my economics and financial risk studies to shame.
    Jan 22 08:17 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment