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  • IMN Real Estate Forum: Opportunities to Invest in Distressed Commercial Real Estate, Part 2 [View article]
    A few public apartment REIT's have refinanced debt and have extended maturities. As they are less leveraged than private companies, they have a much better chance of weathering the storm and producing decent returns overe the next five years. Both AvalonBay (AVB) and Equity Residential (EQR) are two that fit this scenario. I would stay away from office, retail and hotels for now. Note: Long EQR
    Jun 16 11:26 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The 'Bond Vigilantes' Are Back [View article]
    My pick is a combination of investment grade corporates, high yield and muni's. Spreads will continue to narrow for corporates and high yield and tax rates will inch higher (for muni's). I am long accordingly.

    On Jun 11 08:15 AM prairiedog555 wrote:

    > But what is the pick going forward for fixed income?
    Jun 11 11:59 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Bank and Broker Full Year EPS Estimates [View article]
    GS will look to lay off their bank charter in 2011 through a spin off of their investment banking group. Thanks taxpayers for the cheap money!
    Jun 11 11:49 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 28 Key Asset Categories: How Do They Compare? [View article]
    Arrogance and hubris are not engaging qualities for someone who places "CFA" after their name. As a self described options trader, you may not care about "trends", only the next thirty days or less. That's fine, but observing trends, combined with real world knowledge of interest rates, industry and politics have enabled many investors to make money or not lose their life savings. Many people do not have the time or skill to follow individual companies and use mutual funds or ETF's. Taking cheap shots at others weakens your opinion.
    Jun 11 11:30 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Goldman Forecasts China Ascendancy [View article]
    Basic historical analysis will show you that nations and empires decline when they embark on protracted wars and military excursions and borrow heavily. See Great Britain, France, Russia as examples. Now look at the U.S.: borrowing heavily, engaged in two wars with troops in 120 locations worldwide. It will take a while to save, pay down debt and accept a lower standard of living. A broad based investment allocation in sovereign debt (non-U.S.) and companies engaged in sales in emerging markets offers the best returns.
    Jun 11 11:15 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What's To Be Done About Citigroup? [View article]
    Although your article has some merit, simply attacking commercial bankers as people who are "boring and counting pennies" is both arrogant and ignorant. Commercial bankers serve a very valuable link in our credit based economy and provide necessary loans to small and middle market companies that cannot access public debt markets. Cit is unfortunately a larger-than-life failed financial supermarket that has its fingers in many businesses and financial markets. Most governments don't want to deal with a complete failure here. Citi needsan experienced commercial banker to help turn it around.
    As to your gloss over of JPM, this bank has the largest derivative book in the world and was handed Bear Stearns because of its counterparty risk to Bear. A lovely cover up.
    Jun 8 10:57 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Monetary Policy Is Loose, Yield Curve Steep, Waters Uncharted [View article]
    Perhaps you are correct, but not in the near term where the consumer has little purchasing power due to the elimination of credit, the need to pay down debt and save. This is a deflationary environment. Commodities and oil prices are constantly manipulated by the likes of GS and others. Banks are not lending out their new government money and, hence, no inflation. Debt continues to be destroyed in excess of government monetary creation.

    On Jun 06 01:15 PM Moon Kil Woong wrote:

    > Austrian63 is right. There are no unintended consequences here. Any
    > economist will tell you what happens when you run massive deficits
    > with no end in sight even as your economy contracts, when you blow
    > up the Fed's balance sheet 400% in a year, when you guarantee $8
    > trillion dollars backed by taxpayers, and whan you write $700 billion
    > checks without any regulation or constraint.
    > You get inflation, fraud, runaway government, and poor returns on
    > investment. Duh...
    Jun 6 03:47 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bank of America's Atrocious Choice for Chief Risk Officer [View article]
    B of A is still trying to engineer the financial supermarket model that has failed for so many others over the last thirty years. If you can't even get the strategy right, you won't succeed. Fire the CEO and the entire board. Start from scratch and sell Merrill Lynch as soon as the market recovers. Just as Citigroup learned with Smith Barney, you won't be able to cross-sell anything with internally divergent cutures. Remember Shearson American Express and Sears Dean Witter?
    Jun 6 03:25 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 3 ETFs for Hedging Against Deteriorating Dollar [View article]
    Of course, all these commentators are saying the dollar is going to fail! And everyone is moving their money into gold, siver, the yen, the euro, the real? I think not because the majority of these comments are nonsense. Given the lack of viable alternatives, most investors will leave their assets in U.S. dollars as we have the most diversified economy in a global market, the strongest democracy and a military to defend us.
    A well diversified portfolio might short the long Treasury and have a small portion in gold, silver and other commodities. Otherwise stocks and bonds in an age appropriate mix is the best bet. Note: Long GLD, U.S. and foreign stocks, intermediate corporate and muni bonds, short the 30 year Treasury.
    Jun 5 09:03 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • PIMCO's Bill Gross Sees a Bleak Future [View article]
    Dear Cautious: It is very easy to take shots at the Obama administration without laying the blame on the Senate and the House. Neither party will go against the lobbyists who refuse to consider meaningful reform throughout the federal government. I recall REpublicans raising taxes after cutting them as they never cut the federal busget in any significant amount. Healthcare rform will probably not happen because the lobbyists will stop it behind the scenes and the enormous waste and excessive testing due to both litigation risk and more so due to doctors owning the labs will continue. I agree the budget is not realistic, but what federal budget ever was? We will have slower growth as Gross mentions but federal spending is barely replacing the amount of private debt that is being destroyed and that is why he says inflation is a few years off. We as a society have to face up to our defecits and pay off the debt. That's the breaks even though I don't like it. Our capitalist system will survive an increase in taxes and slower growth. The Obama administration is far from perfect but it is at least making an imperfect attempt to deal with issues. Instaed of taking cheap shots, let's give them a chance. This is from an independent and libertarian voter who has no love for either party as they are bought and paid for.

    On May 31 08:15 AM CautiousInvestor wrote:

    > While somewhat troubling, I happen to share his view as it seems
    > most consistent with the facts.
    > I f you take PIMCO's view and compare it CBO forecasts, it is immediately
    > apparent that the CBO is not buying into the new normal or simply
    > ignoring it; they are forecasting nominal growth of 4.5% a year through
    > 2015.
    > If PIMCO ir right, which I believe they are, and CBO wrong, it has
    > enormous implications for the budget deficit.........which will only
    > get worse. And this will spill over into tax policy, another piece
    > of the new normal.
    > With the most optimistic forecasts and creative accounting, the administration
    > is being challenged to balance the budget; Obama and the administration
    > will be forced to raise taxes to balance the budget and will be forced
    > to increase them further to fund healthcare reform.
    > Obama wants to raise income taxes for high earners, impose new levies
    > on business and tax greenhouse emissions, but those moves would not
    > generate enough cash to cover the cost of health care, much less
    > balance the budget, and they have not been fully embraced by Congress.
    > Lawmakers are considering other ways to pay for health reform, including
    > new taxes on sugary soda, alcohol and employer-provided health insurance.
    > The latest revenue generating idea is the Value Added Tax, a tax
    > imposed upon the profit generated at every level of manufacturing.
    > Effectively it is a national sales tax cooked into the price of a
    > finished product as opposed to 10% slapped on at the register.<br/>
    > Taken together all of these taxes, assuming they pass through Congress,
    > will drain the live out of what was once a robust and vibrant economy.
    > This will come to characterize our new normal, something the Europeans
    > have been dealing with for some time inside their sluggish and sclerotic
    > economies.
    Jun 4 02:03 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • 5 Stocks Selling At a Discount to Fair Value [View article]
    Given the recent rise in prices, most of the mentioned stocks are no longer cheap. Take $5 off of each and you will have a meaningful discount. I own JNJ, PEP and CVX and can tell you they are well managed companies selling at a small discount to fair value today. Wait for the next pullback before buying.
    May 28 12:24 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Get Ready for Rising Interest Rates [View article]
    One must assume that we are facing rising company earnings to see higher stock prices going forward. For inflation to occur, new money needs to flow through the banking system to companies and consumers in the form of new credit. This is not the case. Credit destruction continues via credit card losses, rising unemployment and small companies not applying for new loans. Banks are simply sitting on this new money to bolster capital in the face of continuing losses from real estate loans.
    May 28 12:08 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Gentlemen Prefer Bonds [View article]
    Agree with diversifying into investment grade corporates and decent sovereign debt. Howevr, the fear over the U.S. dollar is overblown. China and everyone else is going to diversify into "what'? The Yen, the Euro, the Swiss Franc? I think not given the problems in other countries and regions. Yes, the U.S. government is printing too much money, but this new supply isn't sufficient to replace the larger amount of debt destruction taking place with banks and consumers and the new supply isn't turning into new credit as banks are sitting on this "new money" to suppliment their inadeqaute capital. Furthermore, over 70% of small businesses are not looking for new credit as they see no way to expand their business right now. Near term Treasury yields are too low to merit savings and the longer term is too risky. China and the U.S. will engage in mutual slow moving devaluation of their currencies at the same time. Everything else is noise and headline grabbing confusion. Note: Long investment grade corporates, sovereign debt (non U.S.), muni's and Ginnie Mae's and GLD. Short the U.S. 30 year Treasury.
    May 28 11:56 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Richelson: 100% Bond Allocation Is Appropriate [View article]
    Great comments. Brokerage firms can make money trading the bond spreads for their own account but make much more having you trade stocks and placing you in stock mutual funds. How many tell you to diversify into low cost bond funds? Very few. Given the low trading volume today and manipulation by major banks pushing their own stocks, I am in investment grade corporates, Ginnie Mae's and municipal bond funds, gold and energy stocks. I sleep well at night.
    May 28 11:42 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 15 Notes on Our Current Economic Situation [View article]
    The writer is correct in that new money from the government to banks does not add to inflation if the banks don't lend. Consumers are tapped out and, on average, are not looking for more debt. Home prices will continue to fall until excesses are wrung out of the overpriced system. New mortgage debt is limited because few have 20% down for a new purchase and many existing homeowners are upside down on their mortgages. Aggregate demand for new money (debt) will stagnate as consumers save to pay down excessive debts.

    Individual workers have the right to organize a union. However, like most large bureacracies, large unions stagnate and the leadership achieves power only by increasing benefits, not by ensuring basic workplace safety and rights. The auto workers and steel workers unions are perfect examples of this inept management and the workers pensions and helath benefits are now doomed. The major problem lies with overpaid corporate executives who cry the "freedoms of capitalism" yet act with the worst attributes of crony capitalism. They avoid tough decisions to minimize potential strikes that might put pressure on their bonuses and vesting stock options. Reality is now catching up with these clowns and causing increased unemployment for the masses as the sytem corrects. The next managment group to be exposed are governors of states and mayors with large public service employee unions. Overly generous pensions and health care plans will crush budgets this year and next and voters are saying no to tax increases. Where are the leaders who can say we need to live within our means and budget accordingly?

    On May 26 09:04 AM American in Paris wrote:

    > 1. First of all, Japan had very high money supply growth (measured
    > by M1) in the Lost Decade and yet still experienced deflation. Counteracting
    > declines in the velocity money completely offset money supply growth.
    > Hence aggregate demand stagnated.
    > 2. Unionization is a fundamental right, not a luxury. Many successful
    > have unionized work forces.
    May 26 12:53 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment