Archive for September, 2010

Alternative Funding

This week’s diatribe is about off-balance sheet accounting and alternative financing. I’ve been approached multiple times in the past month or two about investment opportunities funding some activity outside of the normal funding channels (banks or equity financing). This leads me to wonder how much lending is happening in our economy this way and if it’s under the radar. I don’t like the sound of it. Listen to my video below.   Read More

Ten Things Making Me Nervous

If you look back at my 3rd Quarter Preview (here) I mentioned I forecast the 3rd quarter would be up. That’s proving to be a great move (if I do say so myself). But what makes me nervous? This article sums up a lot of my feelings. Does that mean I’m bearish for the 4th Quarter? I guess you’ll have to wait until my 4th Quarter preview in a couple of weeks to find out. Click on this link for FULL  ARTICLE   Read More

Deleverage? No, Default!

Many articles have been written in the past year about the decline in U.S. Household Debt. This is something to celebrate, right? People are paying off their debt, right? Wrong. It is almost scary how closely the decline in US Household debt correlates with the charge-offs of mortgage and consumer loans. People are defaulting, not paying them off. Click for FULL ARTICLE HERE   Read More

No Increase in Social Security Benefits 2011

It’s unofficial, but it’s looking like there will be no cost of living adjustment (COLA) for 2011. If you recall, 2010 had no increase. Please click for FULL ARTICLE   Read More

Five Things Employers Want to Know

Last week I was invited to speak about financial literacy to NASA employees down in Houston that are being laid off. One of the other speakers was a recruitment and job placement specialist. He had this slide which I thought was good for employees looking for a job, but also for those of us already employed or self-employed. Do you have a good answer for each one? •Why are you here? •What can you do for us? •What kind of person are you? •What distinguishes you from the other people who can do the same tasks? •Can I afford you? ... Read More

Inflationary Period Decisions

Last week I talked about recommendations assuming we’re in a DEflationary period. This week I give suggestions for how to invest in an INflationary period. Oh yeah, lots of good stuff in my videos (if I do say so myself). Listen to my video below.   Read More

Tax Cuts for Some, but AMT for All

President Obama came out this week in support of making the Bush tax rate cuts permanent for those making $250,000 or less. Good move, and let’s see what happens in Congress with this hot potato. Is anyone talking about Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT)? No. The AMT is scheduled to sunset too, and the Congressional Budget Office estimates the number of people this affects will jump from 4.5 million taxpayers to 27 million in 2011. Click on these links to see a few tax cut articles.  About Those Tax Increases for the “Rich” Finally, Some Pragmatism from Obama Read More

Greece – The Land of Zeus

I’ve been pretty negative over the past year on Greece and all of Europe. However, there are reasons to be optimistic about Greece and that it can rise from it’s difficult situation. Click for a discussion about Greeks Bearing Bonds.   Read More

How to Tell When a CEO is Lying

No, this isn’t a setup for the punchline “his lips are moving”. This article details the findings of some researchers that looked at 30,000 conference calls to identify any “tells” of “mistruths”. Interesting……. Please click for HOW TO TELL WHEN A CEO IS LYING   Read More

Deflationary Period Decisions

At the beginning of the year most economists were predicting an inflationary period. They were wrong. This week I give suggestions for how to invest in a DEflationary period. Next week I take the opposite view and say “how should you invest if it’s actually an inflationary period?”. Hilarity ensues of course. Okay, maybe not. Listen to my video below. Read More

Why the Euro is Doomed

Have you been paying attention to my blogs? Good, that’s the answer I wanted. We may have some fiscal problems here in the United States, but compared to the Europeans we’re looking like a beauty queen. The Euro? I surely wouldn’t be long the Euro. Click on this link to see a detailed discussion about why the European Monetary Unit is a long term concern.     Read More

How Financial Reform Will Really Work

It’s taken 2 years but some Financial Reform has finally happened. Regulation here we come. I’m not a big fan of most regulation, but regardless of which side of the fence you’re on, here’s a great article that describes how it’s really (probably) going to work. Click for Full Article   Read More

Taxpayers on the Hook for $3 Trillion in Pensions

The reason I include this article is to reinforce my belief that Municipal Bonds are something to avoid. State pensions are in a world of hurt, and you and I will be subsidizing them in the future. Do you think this will cause some slowdown in state revenues and resources? Of course. Please click for Full Article   Read More

Mike’s House

This week Boulder had a forest fire in the mountains west of the city. Unfortunately, Cassidy and I have been evacuated since Sunday morning from our home while they try to contain the fire. As of the writing of this newsletter, it looks like everything will be okay, but my heart really goes out to all the people who have lost their homes. The picture to the right is of the road leading to our home. We’re about 1/2 mile past this cop, inside all the smoke.   Read More

Myth – It’s Not a Loss Until You Sell It

This week I tackle a misconception that I run across every once in a while. “It’s not a loss unless I sell it” Sorry, it doesn’t work that way. You’ve lost the money whether you sell it or not, and the question you should ask yourself is “is this the right allocation for this sum of money right now, understanding I can’t change what has already happened?” Listen to my video below.   Read More

Dark Side of Deficits

Are we on the cusp of a secular bull market? Does the economy and the stock market go in sync? Is one a leading indicator for the other? How do you value the stock market? Forward P/Es or Reported P/Es? And how will our current deficits affect the answers to all these questions? This is one of the best articles of the year, packed with information for you to fully understand our current situation. For your convenience, I’ve highlighted what I think is most important. Read More

Do High-Cost Funds Pay Off?

It’s the after fee return that matters, and this article is a good one because it talks about the importance of expense efficiency. Just because a mutual fund costs more doesn’t mean it’s better, but then just because it’s cheaper doesn’t mean it’s better either. Click for a further discussion   Read More

100 Year Bonds — Signs of Trouble

You’ve probably heard of 10 year bonds. 30 year bonds too. How about 100 years? Norfolk Southern is issuing a 100 year bond that will mature in 2110! Is this a good or bad sign? Please click on the link   Read More

54 Animal Crackers

I don’t know about you, but I loved Animal Crackers as a kid growing up. Did you realize there have been 54 different animals featured? That’s a whole lotta animal goodness. CLICK FOR FULL ARTICLE Read More

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