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  • Eerie Similarity Between the 1987 Crash and the Summer Crash of 2011 [View article]
    Some reading for me this weekend as to the underlying conditions of the 1987 crash. I was 10 years old then and I don´t remember much in the way of financial news that year! Any thoughts from the older and wiser?
    Aug 5, 2011. 05:17 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Give Your Portfolio a Head of Steam With Ormat [View article]
    Holders of Geothermal stocks have been pretty badly punished the last year and one can only hope that this fledgling energy sector gets a lot more recognition for being a true renewable base load power provider that is very cost competitive and long lived. I read that it not being a "sexy" venture for big money, Wall Street and it´s huge marketing push has kept this sector struggling for financing and under the radar. One day this will change. I will patiently hold my shares in this and other Geothermal plays in the meantime.
    Aug 5, 2011. 04:54 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Summer Crash of 2011 and the Shape of Things to Come [View article]
    Thanks. Any recommendation for a free source of that information? At least 15mins delayed though real time would be nice!
    Aug 5, 2011. 04:38 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Reuters reports sources saying the ECB will buy Italian and Spanish sovereign paper if Italian PM Berlusconi will commit to specific reforms. The euro is all over the place - first printing all the way down to $1.4056 and now back to $1.4224. U.S. shares are rallying.  [View news story]
    It was all good for the Euro in the end. I had hoped there would be a stronger close considering the thrashing the dollar got today....
    Aug 5, 2011. 04:21 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Summer Crash of 2011 and the Shape of Things to Come [View article]
    Are you talking about yields on the stocks corporate bonds therefore implying the credit/liquidity event is winding down(like PIIGS bond yields dropping a bit today last time I heard) or dividend yields dropping as a preface to reduced earnings/margins and the start of a more pronounced slow down in the private sector? Sorry I don`t really follow blue chips much so this is new to me.
    Aug 5, 2011. 04:15 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Commodity Prices and the Consumer [View article]
    There´s hope out there! Somewhere.....
    Aug 4, 2011. 02:50 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Investment Implications Of FHFA's Suing UBS [View article]

    Thank you very much for the detailed response. You`ve given me a lot of food for thought! Given recent economic trends I can only surmise that states will have to get more creative with how they get their money. I am not familiar with how the US state taxation system works and where it gets most of its revenue from but I can only imagine that rising unemployment and falling real estate values are a negative. I am very interested you contend that despite that they, munis and states, still have "room to manoeuvre". That is the heart of the matter for me and whether AGO can pull it off. I note that as of March 2011 they had 382 billion usd in net par outstanding exposure to US municipal debt and a book value of only 7.9 billion. They also still had 24 billion usd in residential MBS exposure. I wonder if the recent share price movement has been more to do with recent lawsuit action or with recent negative news flow about certain munis (eg Jefferson County, Alabama)? Thanks again, You´ve made me want to re-examine my position and delve deeper.
    Full disclosure : I am short AGO
    Aug 2, 2011. 11:58 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • China's Dagong ratings agency downgrades the U.S. from A+ to A with negative outlook, saying the debt ceiling agreement means there will be no "positive changes in factors that will influence the country's debt-paying ability in the long run." Dagong last downgraded the U.S. in the wake of QEII's start.  [View news story]
    Rating downgrades will have other consequences though : Right now USD seems very weak considering a deal was struck, Gold and silver surging, Swiss Franc and Yen strong vs USD and the less immediate the negative effect on the wider bond and equity markets.....
    Aug 2, 2011. 10:37 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Investment Implications Of FHFA's Suing UBS [View article]
    To the Author and anyone else with knowledge about Assured Guaranty : What do you feel about the exposure of Assured Guaranty to the muni debt market? I note that the debt deal did nothing to help the share though the main market sagged just as badly today and that they have a great management team behind them(they are the only surviving big player after 2008-9) but I fear their business model is in question when it could only take a few muni defaults to completely bankrupt AGO. To the Author : I see you are long AGO above and are also recommending the company. I would really appreciate your views about the muni debt situation in the states, thanks!
    Aug 2, 2011. 08:12 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • No Engine Left [View article]
    Damn! I was waiting to go short again at the pop after a debt deal but the irrational exuberance since Greece 2.0 has evaporated. (It`s the economy, stupid!!). A bounce tomorrow? Still at key levels(right?) on the S&P 500....
    Aug 2, 2011. 05:49 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Former U.K. Prime Minister Gordon Brown May Be Responsible for Gold Bubble [View article]
    I wish I had been investing then to "back up the truck" on gold but I am sure it would have been a difficult trade to make emotionally. I wonder who were the buyers of all that gold? Perhaps some chums of Mr. Brown?
    Aug 2, 2011. 11:29 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • As Long As the Debt Ceiling Situation Rages, Where to Hide? [View article]
    So you´re talking about somewhere between an Argentinian default scenario and a German hyperinflation where you think you might lose your job? How are you going to pay for the taxes, utilities and upkeep? with your deflated savings? I still think buying property that can produce food and where your investments can grow(ie livestock) is rather more attractive. And if you really believe the USD is toast then instead of tying up personal wealth in dollars leverage it to the max. If you can do 5% or less down(FHA??) and lock in rates for the long term 15-30 years. The best thing is you´ll be technically short the dollar! Then invest that money elsewhere commodities, emerging markets etc etc and you´ll be doubly rewarded if the dollar tanks(your portfolio soars while your debt inflates away). Don´t worry about the costly chore of storing necessities then because whatever price you meat goes to you will own the right mix of commodities, currencies, etc that will preserve your purchasing power. I think the only reason to store is if you believe there will be a scarcity of that necessity and my point is that people kill for less than just trying to feed themselves. For an example in the US think New Orleans 2005 if you think you won´t need to defend yourself. If you really want to speculate in meat then surely you´re better off with the futures, ETF`s, AG stocks.... even the cost and space taken up by a tradestation in that little apartment of yours will be nothing compared to all those freezers, packets of meat and their power consumption. If you`re serious why not buy a commercial meat storage facility and store massive quantities of meat like the big players do with oil, copper, etc etc?? (do they already play that game with basic necessities as well??) The main thing is that I think being nimble(is in liquid) is key at times like these. How quickly can you sell that apartment/meat if you change your mind and especially if the market goes against you? Personally I sold most of my properties some time ago and moved away from the west. I now rent in Central America and have a great lifestyle for a lot less on the dollar and I don´t need to work any more. I have the freedom to move wherever and whenever I want and I don´t have to worry about my house and its value anymore while I keep 90% of my net worth invested. I have friends down here who live very happily on 500-1000usd a month.
    Aug 1, 2011. 11:51 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • As Long As the Debt Ceiling Situation Rages, Where to Hide? [View article]
    How are you going to pay to keep that apartment maintained and all those freezers running? If you are in an apartment it implies an urban setting where collapse of social order would be far more likely should you actually need all of the above. Not having the means to defend yourself there would make all that meat an easy target. Save your money and go buy a homestead out in the countryside where you can grow your own food and remain somewhat sheltered from the anarchy of a complete collapse. Instead of meat buy livestock!
    Jul 28, 2011. 12:59 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Applying Game Theory to the Debt Standoff [View article]
    In other words: It is more advantageous longterm for the Republicans to reach a compromise now than be forced to make such a decision when they can be seen as solely responsible for the pain that follows. The democrats never lifted a finger when they held the reins of power - perhaps they were waiting to lose the majority power. It´s still a game of chicken now though....
    Jul 27, 2011. 03:17 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • As Long As the Debt Ceiling Situation Rages, Where to Hide? [View article]
    I would agree with you but that would be to hope that it would be somehow different this time in the event of a serious market downturn provoked by all this madness in the US, EU etc etc. Serious panics are bad(at least in the shorter term) for PM`s and especially other commodities. Despite a downgrade, the US treasury market will be still the largest and most liquid hiding place along with the USD. The interesting thing this time around is that the risk of such a hiding place is in question. Will that support Gold/Silver and other alternative havens? I hope so.....
    Jul 27, 2011. 12:28 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment