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  • Obamacare Reducing Insurance Premiums [View article]
    I'm 72 on Medicare and use AARP's UnitedHealthcare Insurance company for my Plan B Supplement, using their premium plan with no co-pay. I have not gotten any letter from AARP and doubt I will. Last year my rate increase for this year was significantly lower than in previous years. I am not expecting a rate increase that will be that much different for next year. You didn't say if you were on Medicare or not and that might make a difference, and you didn't say if AARP has alternatives to Aetna for you. Perhaps you can get a better deal with another health insurance company. What percentage of your current costs is $200? Aren't you glad that capitalism allows these private companies to charge you such an increase and then blame it on the government? Aren't you proud of your Republican controlled state governments that are allowing their state insurance commissioners to permit the insurance companies to rob you blind? I find it a just irony that the red states will be paying for the benefits of the blue states.
    Sep 15, 2013. 01:28 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • There Are No Good Reasons To Invest In Bank Of America Right Now [View article]
    I read your article and tend to agree with you. I am totally out of BAC at the moment, having sold at an average above $14.60. With BK and WFC outside of consideration, what price would you be tempted to buy BAC again? I am considering around $13.25 and then hold until the dividend is raised. Would you agree? Or do you think BAC has just plateaued out and will not go up or down for some time? As you say "dead money". Also, what opinion do you have for the October 17th earnings? Thanks.
    Sep 13, 2013. 07:02 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • GOP Hearings On Climate Change May Threaten Entire Green Economy [View article]
    Wow! I'm amazed at the resistance to solid scientific studies on Climate change (or evolution, for that matter). Many of the posts on this thread by non-scientists are filled with misconceptions, silly beliefs, and deliberate twisting of the facts. Shame on you. Being wealthy or politically powerful doesn't make your anti-science valid. It just makes you dangerous and harmful to our country, to truth, to science, and to the rest of the world. All this post demonstrates is the strangle hold that the Oil and Gas industry has on America.
    Aug 30, 2013. 03:44 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bank of America to merge Merrill into parent company [View news story]
    BofA still hasn't merged the teller systems between Nations and BofA in California after more than 15 years. How long do you think it will take to merge Merrill Lynch? Like never?
    Aug 16, 2013. 12:51 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Weighing The Week Ahead: Time For A Vacation Snooze? [View article]
    I advised my sister and her husband the "Great Rotation" had finally begun over a month ago. This "once in a lifetime event" is having a profound impact on investing. They had four different quality bond funds (DODIX, PPTRX, VFICX, VFSTX). They are in their middle to late 70s of age and needed something that didn't lose the value of the principle and has a decent ROI. I had been advising them for the last seven months that they would need to do this in 2014. Your article documents that the ROI is better in stock funds than in bond funds. It will get worse for those who are still in bonds, possibly over the next five years. I also got out of REITs for similar reasons. They took my advice and are now glad they did. Most of their investment is currently in cash. I've advised them to buy about 20% of their cash in stock funds that track the S&P500, like FSTVX, FMILX, or FCNTX, each month, hopefully to take advantage of any drop in the S&P500. I'm not pushing Fidelity bonds but only mentioned them because they are currently invested a small amount in the last two I listed. I'm sure there are good stock funds and ETFs that are not Fidelity that track the S&P500 or are superior to it. There may be good reasons for some to be in bond or fixed income funds but I'm not aware of any. There must be a reason to stay in bonds for some? What is it? And what would be the conditions to look for before any return to investing in bond funds or REITs?
    Aug 4, 2013. 12:39 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • "I would not overestimate retail investors' knowledge of how this business works," says Scott Ulm, co-CEO of Armour Residential (ARR -1.3%). Income fans love mREITs (MORT -1.3%) but can suffer quick losses as rates rise. "We believe mREITs are not appropriate for most individual investors," says Edward Jones' Kate Warne, warning brokers to steer clients away from the sector. Ulm remains hopeful: "As bonds become cheaper, reinvestment becomes more profitable." Beneath a big rally for the averages, the sector is hit again today: American Capital (AGNC -2.6%), (MTGE -1.2%), Annaly (NLY -1.9%), Two Harbors (TWO -0.9%), Hatteras (HTS -1.9%), CYS (CYS -2.8%), Anworth (ANH -0.9%). [View news story]
    The message I get is that REITs, like bonds, will be a very bad place to invest for the next five years as interest rates and mortgages rise. Maybe best to buy PUTs on these REITs.
    Jun 7, 2013. 04:34 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Day 2 of Bank of America's (BAC) Article 77 hearing finds an AIG lawyer arguing those who approved the $8.5B settlement - including BlackRock (BLK) and MetLife (MET) were conflicted and never investigated how much money investors actually lost on the MBS originally valued at $105B. A lawyer for BlackRock says it and other firms agreed to the settlement rather than risk BofA putting Countrywide into bankruptcy. Observing the proceeding, Mike Mayo says there's "significant legal tail risk" for BofA. [View news story]
    Totally out of BAC for now. Will consider reinvesting if it drops below $12.25.
    Jun 4, 2013. 05:31 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • BofA (BAC) and Societe Generale (SCGLF.PK) have appealed a judge's denial of a lawsuit in which they sought to reverse regulatory approval of MBIA's (MBI) restructuring in 2009. The bank's argue that overhaul harmed them as policy holders, and that the authorization "was arbitrary and capricious and an abuse of discretion." [View news story]
    The LIBOR lawsuit was also dismissed against BofA today. The LIBOR lawsuit was actually more important than the appeal today. Expect a pop for BAC on Monday. Next week should be a good day. And the stock should be on an upward track from now until beyond April 17th, when BofA announces its first quarter earnings. Should be good.
    Mar 29, 2013. 07:44 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • New compensation policy at Bank of America (BAC) will reportedly require CEO Moynihan and other top executives to hold onto their stock for at least a year after retirement. Previously, they were able to sell company shares immediately upon retirement. The new requirements "demonstrate the alignment of the interests of the (execs) with those of the company's stockholders," says BofA. [View news story]
    While Moynihan has stabilized BAC and resolved many painful issues, the compensation plans for all USA CEOs is cancerous in its neglect of the average American worker. Is the only way to reward a CEO a bigger pile of cash and stock? There are all sorts of perks that don't involve disrespect for the wages of the employees.
    Mar 25, 2013. 08:44 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How Congress Could Fix Its Budget Woes, Permanently [View article]
    I prefer the plan that was adopted in 1950 to pay off the unfunded World War II European and Pacific wars of raising the maximum tax rates on the wealthy to 92%. Doing that the national debt was lowered to a reasonable level in 8 years. And back then the national debt was a larger percentage of our GDP than now.
    Feb 14, 2013. 12:34 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bank of America (BAC +2.9%) and Citigroup (C +1.8%) both have 30% upside this year, says Guggenheim's Marty Mosby, with big dividend hikes - BofA to $0.05 quarterly from $0.01, Citi to $0.25 - a major catalyst. Oppenheimer urges caution on capital returns. "The banks (will) get let out of the penalty box only very slowly." [View news story]
    The point is that you would be hard pressed to invest over the next 12 months at a better rate of stock value growth. 30% puts us close to $15 and 30% next year puts us close to $20. 60+% over two years is excellent. And personally I think BAC will do even better, plus start paying a higher dividend.
    Feb 5, 2013. 12:47 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bank of America (BAC): Q4 EPS of $0.03 beats by $0.01. Revenue of $18.89B misses by $3.51B. Shares +2.1% premarket. (PR[View news story]

    Too predictable. That is why I sold 20% of my BAC holdings yesterday at $11.74. Bought back in today near the low. Of course it could go lower than $11.31. But there will be a lot of good news for BofA over the next three months that should make it worthwhile as a hold.
    Jan 17, 2013. 02:07 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stagflation: Coming Soon To A Market Near You [View article]
    Another argument for gold. Sorry, I think you are wrong.
    Jan 14, 2013. 07:08 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • More on the Bank of America (BAC -2.3%) downgrade: The stock price is discounting a 16% cut in expenses this year, better than the firm expectation of 10%, say the CS analysts, as the MSR sales won't begin impacting costs until 2014. Better values in the big bank sector are C, JPM, and USB[View news story]
    This is called an opportunity to buy at a lower price.
    Jan 10, 2013. 04:01 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • This just in: The lawsuits against Bank of America (BAC -5.1%) are never going to stop. Despite the $10B+ settlement with Fannie Mae, U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara makes clear he will continue to aggressively go after BofA for selling fraudulent loans to the GSEs. Maybe this, not the downgrade, is what has the shares in a funk today. [View news story]
    Shouldn't effect the stock. Some people think the stock is overbought. I don't. Will be buying more as 2013 will be a good year for Bank of America.
    Jan 10, 2013. 02:25 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment