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  • Coal stocks on their bumpiest ride in five years [View news story]
    @Austin West: As noted by @2901 below, my point about homeowners wanting to pay more for power was somewhat sarcastic. However, many power companies already have the ability to "go green" by paying more for power. The viable rate options let the consumer purchase wind, solar, or other renewable power by just logging into the power provider's website and clicking a button. Why don't more people choose the greener option? Almost any consumer can stand up and offer to pay more for their power -- when they do so, a) they increase their personal power bill, b) they help create jobs constructing renewables and connecting powerlines, and c) reduce demand for coal which lowers coal's price which reduces mine margins which could result in less mine safety and almost assuredly fewer operating mines.

    Maybe said another way: "The mine owners are making too much money and their evil focus on profit over safety is killing people" is no less crazy than saying "The people who buy power are focused on how much they pay to heat, cool, and operate their household and their evil focus on spending as little as possible on power each month is killing people."

    As noted in another comment, I believe that miners should have work that is as safe as possible and mine owners should follow all rules, laws, and provide ethical compassion to resolving any conflicts.

    The sad news is that the marketplace is saying coal is worth less. The consumers of coal are ultimately in charge; providing coal in the current market with a safe work environment and efficiently is a challenge.

    I'm long $FELP and $ARLP as they appear to be the most efficient operators in the market. As a stockholder and power consumer, I hope/trust/expect that they are operating safe mines.

    My other point was that the mining jobs will go away. It will be a combination of safety issues, demand for coal, and automation/robotics that will dramatically reduce the number of miners.
    Sep 6, 2015. 11:06 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Coal stocks on their bumpiest ride in five years [View news story]
    @rfm1979: I'm not suggesting that there are "safe" jobs at the mines. I appreciate that miners risk their lives; I'm not a miner nor a policeman nor an Airborne Ranger and all involve more physical risk than my job. I thought my point was pretty simple: "Miners should seek lower risk work with an understanding they will be paid less." I did not say miners should seek safer mining jobs (which likely don't exist).

    Maybe said another way: If miners would like safer work, they will likely need to move out of mining and that means their professional skills will sadly be less valued.

    To be clear: I believe that miners should have work that is as safe as possible and mine owners should follow all rules, laws, and provide ethical compassion to resolving any conflicts. The challenge is that mining is inherently more dangerous than, say, being a farmhand. The difference is the miner makes 3x the compensation of a farmhand yet likely both have the same general skills and education level. The difference is risk of occupation, union representation, and personal desire.
    Sep 6, 2015. 10:50 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • An Alternative To Cash For A Risk-Averse Investor [View article]
    I'll echo other comments in that a site like BankRate will show that there are multiple FDIC banks paying right at 1%. I happen to use Ally, CITBank, Barclays, and Quorum CU and all pay ~1%. A married couple can move $500K into such a savings account and have full insurance FDIC coverage (for whatever that turns out to be worth :)

    In addition, a fund like Baird Intermediate Municipal Bond Fund Class Institutional ($BMBIX) has a large percentage of the fund held in pre-refunded munis so the risk is mostly interest rate risk rather than credit risk. $BMBIX has low turn over, low expenses, and pays interest monthly. With a NAV of $11.67 and the last two months (Jul/Aug) monthly distribution of $0.02336086 per share this gives you $0.28033032/year in income per share or 2.4% tax-free; apply your tax rate to gross up the tax-equivalent rate. Again, the risk here is the Fed finally raises rates and there is capital loss.

    BMBIX Overview:
    2015 month dividends paid:
    Sep 3, 2015. 12:36 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Coal stocks on their bumpiest ride in five years [View news story]
    @phildevoyd: IMO, coal mining is a dangerous business even if mines are operated with safety of miners as the only priority. Like flying in an airplane or crossing the street on foot, the risk can never be zero regardless of what is done. That does not excuse lack of safety measures or adherence to laws, rules, and commonsense. Nor does it excuse lack of paying fines.

    My point is that neither fines (paid or unpaid) nor laws take the risk to zero. More laws and focus on safety mean marginal mines close and towns go away. It is difficult to ask the miners if they'd like a 20% pay cut in order to be more safe or suggest that 50% of the mines will be closed because they can not be operated safely at the current market rate for coal. Maybe said another way, ask a town dependent on mines what would happen if 30% of the citizens were laid off at once. Especially if it means that those citizens are the highest paid in town.

    Ultimately many of these mining jobs will be replaced with automated machines / robots or alternative methods of extraction. Then NPR can do a story on how the towns have been shutdown because the Evil Coal Companies took their jobs away for "no reason" and people were replaced with machines.

    In the end, there is no easy answer. People should be safe at their job. Owners of mines should be held accountable for lack of safety. People who buy power should be willing to pay more per kwh so the cost of coal can be increased and thus improve the safety of mines. Miners should seek lower risk work with an understanding they will be paid less. Homeowners should switch to electricity that costs 3x more so wind farms, PV, and other non-coal power sources can be used. Everything is related.
    Sep 2, 2015. 04:08 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Annaly's chairman buys 100K shares [View news story]
    Ms Denahan-Norris made $25.8m in 2013. And her total income ranged from $21.5m to $35m in 2009-2012. Her five year average comp is $26,369,527/yr and overall she was paid $158,217,161 over the five year period 2009-2013

    The fact that she spent a total of 0.65% of her total five year compensation on stock last week is a pretty useless bit of news. It would be like a MBA or Engineer who is paid $110k/year buying $3,591 worth of stock in a company for which they work. While more than a coffee, not newsworthy IMO given the five year wages it took to make that investment under $4k.

    Worse IMO is the fact that at today's closing price of $9.97, she has managed to save only 10.5% of her five year's income as stock in the company that paid her during that time $158m. She must have a better place to put the money.

    I'm not complaining about the compensation -- that's a different thread pro or con. I'm just trying to point out that not only is her recent buy non-material to her income, her TOTAL ownership in $NLY is amazingly low given her income level.
    Aug 24, 2015. 06:55 PM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Triumph Looks Cheap As A Result Of Temporary Execution Issues [View article]
    Great write-up; thanks. Forbes picked this stock today for their Special Situation Survey.
    Aug 14, 2015. 04:35 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • STORE Capital beats and boosts [View news story]
    Excellent. Long $STOR and today's jump in price brings be back to break-even. Three tranches for entry in May and one in June. Long term hold.
    Aug 13, 2015. 09:57 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • India files lawsuit against India [View news story]
    Article title incorrect. "India files suit against India". Seems like a self esteem issue. :)
    Aug 12, 2015. 08:02 AM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The mREIT Roundup: A Quick Take On Several Of The mREITs [View article]
    I don't have any special insight into the move $AI made to classify their dividend as RoC. Sadly my average share basis means that even including dividend payments I'm underwater so far. Again, not being an accountant, I think I'd rather have tax free RoC rather than "dividend income" until I'm at least at break-even. :(

    $AI's single page on the issue:
    Aug 8, 2015. 04:54 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The mREIT Roundup: A Quick Take On Several Of The mREITs [View article]
    @ColoradoWealthManagem... Thanks for the quick takes on the mREITs. Any thoughts on Arlington Asset Investment Corporation ($AI). I thought you had previously provided coverage yet I can't find an article or comment in your profile at this time.

    $AI's C-Corp structure is a major positive (qualified dividend treatment) but the game of carry-forward losses will end eventually. The SA/analyst coverage of the company is very thin; I feel like a pioneer without much support and that's not a good thing. :) @Darren McCammon provides some limited coverage and thoughts on occasion.
    Aug 8, 2015. 11:59 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Asciano Has Been Approached By Brookfield Infrastructure Partners - And I Missed Out On It [View article]
    @surfgeezer: What do you mean by "I sell the 40$ puts anytime the yield is over 6%"?

    I assume it is "Sell the naked $40 puts n months out when their return on covered cash is more than 6%." If that is the case, please solve for n. :-)

    Another way to interpret your statement is, "Sell the naked $40 puts n months out when the stock yield is over 6%." If that is your approach, when were you last able to write puts? The yield has not been that high for a long time. (All the way back in 2010 when you initially purchased if we are to believe yCharts:

    Interestingly enough, before I read your comments I bought more $BIP today at $40.58 and I attempted to write $40 puts at 44, 135, and 226 days out for annualized returns on cash of, respectively, 14.9%, 11.4%, and 8.5%. I started too late in the day and the bid/ask spreads were too large.
    Aug 5, 2015. 06:46 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Brookfield Infrastructure Partners FFO of $0.91 [View news story]
    Appears like a solid quarter. "Brookfield Infrastructure generated funds from operations ("FFO") totalling $208 million ($0.91 per unit) for the quarter, up from $180 million ($0.86 per unit) last year. Solid organic growth and contributions from new investments more than offset a modest impact from foreign exchange movements. Our payout ratio(4) for the quarter was 67%, which remains within our target range of 60-70%."
    Aug 5, 2015. 09:58 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Halyard Health, Inc. Announces Second Quarter 2015 Results [View article]
    Mr. Market sure did not like these results. Long $HYH via spinoff and a few more acquired shares. Considering adding today.
    Aug 4, 2015. 11:47 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Lexington Realty Trust beats by $0.01, beats on revenue [View news story]
    Looks like a solid quarter. The buyback is underway. "On July 2, 2015, Lexington announced a new 10.0 million common share repurchase authorization (inclusive of all outstanding prior authorizations). Under this authorization, 150,000 common shares have been purchased at an average price of $8.58 per share."
    Aug 4, 2015. 08:19 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Closer Look At Kinder Morgan's Distributable Cash Flow As Of 2Q 2015 [View article]
    +1. Either the analysis is correct or flawed in some fashion. Please help fellow investors by pointing out the flaws in the analysis if there are any. It does not help to complain about the message; explain in a rational way how the numbers used are incorrect. Disclosure: Long $KMI and $KMIWS.
    Aug 3, 2015. 06:59 PM | 27 Likes Like |Link to Comment