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  • Stocks pop as Hilsenrath says dovish Fed language to stay [View news story]
    Markets weren't great Friday or Monday. Seeing how most (>80%) of market gains in the past number of years have happened in the three days leading up to FOMC announcements, today needed to be big to get back on track. Buy the rumor today, sell the news tomorrow.
    Sep 16, 2014. 01:36 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Asian gold demand slumped in Q2 [View news story]
    Thanks filipo. It looks like about 2/3 of world mining production has been removed from the Shanghai Gold Exchange this year. That doesn't seem like much of a slump, though compared to last year at this time, it's undoubtedly a reduction.
    Sep 15, 2014. 09:36 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Asian gold demand slumped in Q2 [View news story]
    I don't believe these numbers include Chinese purchases through Shanghai (though I could be wrong on that and would appreciate being corrected).
    Sep 15, 2014. 01:44 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Market Champagne Sits On Ice [View article]
    How much of the EPS is explained by the outsized stock buybacks?
    Sep 2, 2014. 08:12 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Japan's Keynesian Demise: A Cautionary Tale For Our Times [View article]
    I'm a Canadian, so neither Democrat nor Republican. I consider myself "liberal" and sometimes "very liberal". But, if you insist on seeing everything through political party filters, that's okay. I was just making the point that vindictive wealthier classes can generally spread their pain around as witness the enormous bank bailouts of 2008 and since. This action turned the USA into one of the world's largest socialization experiments ever.
    Aug 18, 2014. 09:38 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Japan's Keynesian Demise: A Cautionary Tale For Our Times [View article]
    While it is not true that 'whatever is good for the rich is good for all' it is certainly true that 'the pain of the rich can be made to be felt by all.'
    Aug 17, 2014. 09:46 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Weighing The Week Ahead: Time For Central Bankers To Unwind? [View article]
    The whole Seawright thing is a good example of how it pays not to be too smart. There are way too many unstated assumptions in the 'puzzle' and too many vagaries as well. It is to be assumed or understood that by one 'side' of the card is meant top and bottom (hence cards should be 'flipped' instead of 'turned' because the latter could mean by 180 degrees in the horizontal plane. Equally 'side' could mean left or right; the assumption that the puzzle is about the top and bottom sides of each individual card is not obvious.

    Lastly, in order to be logically correct the test should read "Which two and only two cards in the following set must be flipped (displaying the opposite face) to prove the proposition: If a card has a vowel on one of its two faces, then it has an even number on the other (or, more colloquially, Every card with vowel on one face has an even number on the other - The proposition is ambiguous in that it is not clear whether it is also making the vice versa claim that every card with an even number on one face has a vowel on the other; I will assume not, but proper use of propositional logic would clarify that. That's why mathematics is a precise language of its own.)

    The answer to the if-then form question is indeed E (because we know E implies even) and 7 (because NOT (vowel implies even) is (odd implies NOT vowel). However, if the ambiguous question is implied to mean IFF (if and only if, i.e. if-then and vice versa), then each card needs to be flipped to verify the proposition.

    Rather than being about confirmation bias, this 'test' (and I use the term loosely) is more about unspoken and unwritten assumptions and poorly-worded, vague hypotheses.
    Nonetheless, an educational example for investors and indicative of so much of the 'information' and 'hypotheses' we are subjected to daily.
    Aug 17, 2014. 09:32 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Japan's Keynesian Demise: A Cautionary Tale For Our Times [View article]
    I think Europe's Jean Claude Juncker said (I paraphrase): all politicans know what to do. We just don't know how to get re-elected after. There are probably two or three alternative ways to put the world economies back on track. None of them are easy, none of them are pleasant, all of them will hurt the politicians who first try implementing them. I think everyone is waiting for someone else to make the first move. Then they'll have someone they can blame. Not unlike Russia vs. Ukraine, or IS vs. Syria/Iraw, or Japan vs. Korea/China, or China vs. USA.
    Aug 17, 2014. 08:42 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 2 Equity Stories You May Have Missed [View article]
    I keep waiting to see who the 'last fool' will be in this market. Step right up, Japan pension funds!
    Aug 8, 2014. 06:45 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Scenarios For A Vulnerable Stock Market [View article]
    It may be possible that Putin is waiting for NATO to make some kind of alliance with Ukraine. This would be in clear contravention of NATO's treaty with Russia and give Putin 'legal' justification for entering Ukraine. Unfortunately, NATO generals seem to be falling into his trap with gusto.
    Aug 7, 2014. 08:54 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is It Time To Call Wall Street's Bluff? [View article]
    Mayhawk - I can't predict the effect but I'm pretty sure one shouldn't make sanguine predictions about investor behavior based on past "wisdom." However, I'm pretty sure that the wrong kind of shock could still cause a disorderly stampede for the exits. And I'm still pretty sure that those who have been buying all the dips will not be able to make themselves sell in time and will ride their gains all the way back to near-zero (when they will finally sell again at the wrong time).
    Aug 2, 2014. 11:04 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is It Time To Call Wall Street's Bluff? [View article]
    Warren Buffet's too oft-repeated homily was for a simpler time when the masses were overwhelmingly ignorant about matters economic and financial. Through great websites like SA, that may no longer be true and the conventional wisdom may have seen its time.

    I certainly wouldn't bet on the ignorance of the investing public as they are out of the game for now. All that's left are the pros, the sharks and the better-informed independent retail investor. Who's to say who's calling the game properly today?
    Aug 1, 2014. 02:06 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • NYSE Margin Debt Explodes To Near-Record High In June: Risk Rank At No. 1 [View article]
    Two points:
    1) If the graph is changed so that the NYSE margin debt and SPY start at the same point on the left of the graph, then it will show that debt rose 'with' the market the last two cycles and is 'leading' the market now. The choice of matching values on the y-axes is arbitrary so this way of looking at the graph would seem just as valid but a bit scarier.
    2) If things start turning south, I would expect equities purchased with margin debt to exit first. That seems to imply several hundred billion dollars-worth of equities being dumped in a hurry. I guess that's how corrections turn into crashes.
    Jul 28, 2014. 08:22 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Crisis In Ukraine: Path To Peace Or Disastrous Economic Confrontation... [View article]
    That's right. Let's escalate all the way to nuclear war! Screw the Russians (and the Chinese while we're at it). This kind of thinking is nicely building a two-world policy just like Communism did in the 50s to 70s. Only this time, it seems a LOT more aggressive. We actually could use some statesmen (remember those?) to start solving world problems instead of just pushing them towards conflict. Any hope of that happening?
    Jul 21, 2014. 04:10 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Crisis In Ukraine: Path To Peace Or Disastrous Economic Confrontation... [View article]
    It is not opportunistic if the US was neutral on Ukraine, but it is not. It's pushing Europe to increase Russian sanctions that would favor (if not necessitate) LNG imports from the US. THAT is opportunistic manipulation of the worst kind. If, further, the US was at all involved in encouraging the Ukraine to overthrow its president and turn toward the west, THAT is opportunistic manipulation as well.
    Jul 21, 2014. 04:07 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment