Thursday, September 30, 2010

Chart on Procter and Gamble -PG

I was chart surfing and came across Proctor and Gamble, ticker PG. With its dividend and sleep factor, it is a crowd favourite among the Bill Spiropoulos, who was just on the propaganda network and whom I always like to listen to ramble on denigrating anyone questioning his orthodoxy. 

Sure Bill, a double dip is nonsense, bonds are for losers and you can't buy anything with gold. I'd recommend you ask someone from Japan whether bonds or equities are for losers but that might interfere with your logic and more importantly with Bill's income. See for some strange reason on Wall St. the crumbs, sorry I meant to say fees from equities is much more generous than bonds. Bill Spiropoulos like many on Wall St., is a poster child for "product of my environment" investing, they know one thing, inflation and that's all they can see, and all they will see, but yet again I digress. 


A monthly view of PG below.



And now a weekly view of PG below.


Housekeeping notes:

Yesterday I was stopped out of the following positions:

1 unit of NFLX @ $166.33 for a loss of just over 3 pts on 1 unit.
1 unit of IBM @ $135.71 for a loss of just over a pt on 1 unit.

This morning I was stopped out of the following positions:
1 unit of BNS @ $53.44 for a loss of almost 2 pts on 1 unit. 




Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".

Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Amazon ticker AMZN @ $160.00 stop @ $162.11
Short 1 unit Baidu ticker BIDU @ $103.45 stop @ $105.11
Short 1 unit of Apple ticker AAPL @ $ 287.65 stop @ $290.61

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Punting a Few More 'In Vogue' Stocks

Based on today's market action, in particular the action of the bonds but what would they know anyway. I am punting short a couple more selected "in vogue" stocks. In particular:

I am punting short 1 unit of BIDU here at $103.55
I am also punting short 1 unit of AAPL here at 287.75


Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".

Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Bank of Nova Scotia ticker BNS @ $51.65 stop @ $53.41
Short 1 unit Int'al Bus Mach. ticker IBM @ $134.70 stop @ $135.71
Short 1 unit Amazon ticker AMZN @ $160.00 stop @ $162.11
Short 1 unit Neflix ticker NFLX @ $163.30 stop @ $166.31
Short 1 unit Baidu ticker BIDU @ $103.45 stop @ $105.11
Short 1 unit of Apple ticker AAPL @ $ 287.65 stop @ $290.61

Short Some 'In Vogue' Stocks

Based on this mornings action, that of dump then pump, I am prepared to punt on the short side the following venerable names:

1 unit of IBM here at $134.80
1 unit of AMZN here at $160.10
1 unit of NFLX here at $163.40





Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".

Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Bank of Nova Scotia ticker BNS @ $51.65 stop @ $53.41
Short 1 unit Int'al Bus Mach. ticker IBM @ $134.70 stop @ $135.71
Short 1 unit Amazon ticker AMZN @ $160.00 stop @ $162.11
Short 1 unit Neflix ticker NFLX @ $163.30 stop @ $ 166.31




Friday, September 24, 2010

Investing Is Easy

Yes it really is. In case you didn't know that all you had to do was listen to hedge fund mogul David Tepper of Appaloosa Management on the propaganda network this morning. Does anyone have any idea how many times he remarked how EASY investing is? For some strange reason I lost count. My losing count might have had something to do with Mr. Tepper's nauseating arrogance which truly was unbearable. My only question for the boobs and boobs in chairs over at CNBC is either how long till Tepper's hubris makes you barf all over him or at what point do you get sick of his self aggrandizing drivel and simply pop him right in the nose? 

Sadly for us the only question on Carl "whats its like to be a billionarire" Quintanilla's mind is exactly that, whats it like to be a billionaire Mr. Tepper?, tongue a wagging.


I love this master of the universe, alpha, 'front of the herd' Tepper guy. Economy gets better, stocks go up. Economy gets worse the Fed steps in with quantitative easing 2 and, yup, you guessed it, stocks go up. (makes me think about Japan, but I digress) But the line I really love from Tepper is this one;

"but before the Fed comes in with money, up until that point, the stocks can go down a little bit, but not that much, cause I got a put, ya gotta love a put, um especially when the government's issuing it, so I can't go down that much"

Well, I'll be, investing is easy!

We all know it isn't but needless to say I am having a bonfire tonight. 

I am burning every book on the markets I have ever owned. Reminiscences, Intelligent Investor, Battle for investment Survival, you name it, every single one of em' is toast, tonight! 

Son of a gun don't I wish I had heard this before from somebody. Boy, am I the dope!



Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".

Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Bank of Nova Scotia ticker BNS @ $51.65 stop @ $53.41

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Assorted 'In Vogue' Charts - Part II

As I said before, if these aren't playing on your Ipod nano, eeerrr excuse me, I meant sitting in your fully managed portfolio, then odds are your parking valet, excuse me again (dammit) portfolio manager (PM) may be out of work. Sadly he/she might actually understand the concept of risk if these puppies aren't in there but what does that count for in a "get mine or die tryin'"world.

Either way don't be surprised if you see said former hedgie guy or gal drying your car next time thru the wash. Sadly the vast majority are as qualified to do that as the local high school junior working next to them as their supervisor.

Charts below are all on a weekly basis.

Amazon, ticker AMZN.


Autozone, ticker AZO.

Chipotle Mexican Grill, ticker CMG.

Baidu, ticker BIDU.

Salesforce.com, ticker CRM.



Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Bank of Nova Scotia ticker BNS @ $51.65 stop @ $53.41

Assorted 'In Vogue' Charts

Please find below a short list of some of the hedge fund valet boyz and girlz favourites. In similar fashion to your 12 year olds ipod nano song list. Your childs song list will match, odds are probably 80-90% with every other kid.

The hedge fund crowd is identical to this 12 year old set in how they manage YOUR MONEY. The stocks below are in no way all-inclusive but if you don't own em' odds are you are on the achieve or leave performance list at your Greek or Roman mythologically named fund.

Heaven help that Ivy league educated set when the music stops on some of these, for when it does many will have to.....

Maybe try to sell cars, no wait, that biz is tough and a bit burnt.
Maybe try to sell mortgages and re-fi's, no wait, that biz is burnt too.
Maybe go do what they are qualified to do, park cars.

We know they won't do this, so odds are they will call daddy for a job hook-up with his tennis/golf buddy from the club! Makes you really appreciate a 50k/year ivy league edumacation, doesn't it?

Worth every penny, I should think,  especially that fancy frame it hangs in! 


Now for the charts, all are on a weekly basis.

Green Mountain Coffee, ticker GMCR.


Netflix, ticker NFLX.

Apple, ticker AAPL. Speaking of Apple, a friend brought to my attention this piece on APPL's share price target. Very Henry Blodgett-esque in my opinion.

Darden Restaurants, ticker DRI.

Priceline, ticker PCLN.



Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Bank of Nova Scotia ticker BNS @ $51.65 stop @ $53.41

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Recessions... Fantasy and the Real World

Much thanks to Mike Panzner over at Financial Armageddon blog and author of the book of the same name along with the sequel When Giants Fall for bringing to my attention the recent comments from Wal-Mart's CEO of U.S. business Bill Simon. Given these comments, which I will get into below, I absolutely had to bring up the news from Monday from the NBER (National Bureau of Economic Research. It seems, now you may want to sit down for this, that according to the NBER that the recession officially ended in June 2009.

Hurray!

This is fantastic or should I say fantasy news but whatever you do, please don't tell those people walking away from their mortgages in droves that it ended. And please don't tell those institutions like Morgan Stanley that are walking away from commercial mortgages that it ended. But most importantly whatever you do don't tell those end of the month Wal-Mart shoppers the recession is over. They might not believe you.

For those that haven't heard, and that is possible if you get your fill from the propaganda network (CNBC), it seems that Bill Simon, CEO of Wal-Mart U.S. business, made some interesting comments at a Goldman Sachs conference regarding shopper behaviour at a Wal Mart store around midnight at the end of a month.

“The paycheck cycle we’ve talked about before remains extreme. It is our responsibility to figure out how to sell in that environment, adjusting pack sizes, large pack at sizes the beginning of the month, small pack sizes at the end of the month. And to figure out how to deal with what is an ever-increasing amount of transactions being paid for with government assistance.

“And you need not go further than one of our stores on midnight at the end of the month. And it’s real interesting to watch, about 11 p.m., customers start to come in and shop, fill their grocery basket with basic items, baby formula, milk, bread, eggs,and continue to shop and mill about the store until midnight, when electronic — government electronic benefits cards get activated and then the checkout starts and occurs. And our sales for those first few hours on the first of the month are substantially and significantly higher.

“And if you really think about it, the only reason somebody gets out in the middle of the night and buys baby formula is that they need it, and they’ve been waiting for it. Otherwise, we are open 24 hours — come at 5 a.m., come at 7 a.m., come at 10 a.m. But if you are there at midnight, you are there for a reason.”

But wait there's more.

Given the above good news that the recession ended back in June of 09' I thought it very strange the comments Simon from Wal-Mart provided.

Could the NBER be wrong? Could it's figures be subject to revision? Naaaah, couldn't be. Could they?

What is even stranger is yet another snippet from the real world that Mike also brought to my attention showing insider selling outpacing buying 290-1 via the sleuths over at Zero Hedge. The cats over at Zero Hedge put out so much info it is hard to keep up so mucho appreciation to Mike for catching it and sharing.

Does anyone else find it strange that, if the recession ended already as the NBER has told us it has, why are the insiders tripping over each other to sell?


Or as Lt. Daniel Kaffee said to Col. Nathan Jessop in A Few Good Men ..... if you gave an order that Santiago wasn't to be touched, why would it necessary to transfer him off the base?"



Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Bank of Nova Scotia ticker BNS @ $51.65 stop @ $53.41

Charlie and Warren, Birds of a Feather......

Took a couple of PTO days last week, sssh don't tell anyone, only to have a computer problem which was resolved last evening, so my apologies for not posting of late.

Birds of a Feather Flock Together

Regular readers know I have been intensely critical of the Oracle Warren Buffett. I have criticised the hypocrisy of so many of his statements that I cannot count that high, (I didn't go to Harvard or Yale), yet so many continue to kneel before him!

Statements like Tony Hayward of BP should go so we can all feel better about the spill while simultaneously supporting Lord Blankfein over at six feet under without public tit sucking Goldman Sachs or his testimony before the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission where the Oracle stated that "CEO's of companies that needed public help should go away broke" are just a few of the many out there.

Recently Warren's #2 at Berkshire Hathaway Charlie Munger had some interesting comments during a lecture at the University of Michigan recently. Just in case you were wondering, Anna Nicole, eeerrr excuse me Becky Quick moderated the discussion. Below are a few gems from the discussion:

“You should thank God” for bank bailouts, Munger said. “Now, if you talk about bailouts for everybody else, there comes a place where if you just start bailing out all the individuals instead of telling them to adapt, the culture dies.”

Bank rescues allowed the U.S. to avoid what could have been an “awful” downturn and will help the country as it deals with the housing slump, Munger, 86, said.

"Hit the economy with enough misery and enough disruption, destroy the currency, and God knows what happens,” Munger said.

“So I think when you have troubles like that you shouldn't be bitching about a little bailout. You should have been thinking it should have been bigger.”

"Germany was unable to stabilize its financial system in the 1920s, and, Munger said, “We ended up with Adolf Hitler”

I am at a loss for words to describe the arrogance and gall flowing from Munger's mouth.

Note the Armageddon/fear comment at the end with the Hitler analogy to justify the bailout, very Hank Paulsonesque no?

Rather than insult the 86 yr old Munger, (by the way Charlie, Hitler came to power as a result of drunken sailor money printing in Germany, apologies to drunken sailors as they spend their own dough) for the next 1000 words, which would be quite easy and most deserving, I want you to read one last snippet from the discussion at U of M. Someone from the crowd asked whether the government should have bailed out homeowners instead of Wall Street, to which Munger said:

“You’ve got it exactly wrong.”

“There’s danger in just shoveling out money to people who say, ‘My life is a little harder than it used to be,’”

“At a certain place you’ve got to say to the people, ‘Suck it in and cope, buddy. Suck it in and cope.’”


Yes Charlie bailouts are essential and should be much bigger, most especially when thoust ass is in a sling with said position you pathetic, little, narcissistic charlatan. How arrogant can a person be? Actually the more I consider his comments,I think Munger is absolutely insane.

The truly sad and worse fact about this is that the crowd in front of him, and Buffet whenever he speaks, sit there like zombies, or rather more accurately prozac'd, ritalin'd, ambien'd zombies and soaks up this absolute unmitigated and total shit he is dispensing!

Gotta save the system, gotta prevent Armageddon, pass the bailouts or martial law ahead. Remember all those thinly veiled threats and admonitions from out leaders and pundits? I have oft said that we don't stand a chance with the likes of those in charge leading and deciding the way. Munger's quotes are crystal clear evidence that not only do we not stand a chance, the ONLY way we do stand one is to blow the whole system up and start over.

This is Wall St. readers. Munger and Buffet are widely considered the leading lights of today's financial landscape. I can only encourage you, yet again to govern yourself accordingly.

I won't hold my breath on that but in the least, keep talking Charlie and Warren. Keep endowing your brand of purported 'wisdom' on your grovelling little Jonestown-esque cult followers. In the least your words will remain in history to expose you to future generations for what you really and truly are, narcissistic charlatans the both of you.


Before I forget and just in case you missed the news, U.S. housing for June were revised downwards to -1.2% from their originally reported -0.3%. Don't feel bad underestimating the decline, most of the highly paid economists on Wall St. and in Washington did as well.


Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Bank of Nova Scotia ticker BNS @ $51.65 stop @ $53.41

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Bonds via the TLT's

I thought it might be informative to take a monthly basis look at the bonds via the TLT's. The chart below shows primary movement highs (in orange) and the secondary reaction highs or correction highs if you like (in blue). Note the hilighted big volume bars were all up candles. Remember now, monthly basis and that counts for more....I think!


I have magnified the previous monthly basis chart to a 5 yr weekly below.

Finally I have magnified the pervious weekly basis chart to a 2 yr daily below.



Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Bank of Nova Scotia ticker BNS @ $51.65 stop @ $53.41

Short some BNS

Based on my post yesterday Couple of Canadian Banks, and the fact that Bank of Nova Scotia has reversed back below the 52 level (prior high) I am prepared to test the waters and punt 1 unit of BNS short here at $51.75 with a stop at 53.41.


Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Bank of Nova Scotia ticker BNS @ $51.65 stop @ $53.41

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

How Low Can One Stoop

I do not recall which blogger, (apologies to CNBS's Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, I meant idiot blogger), who brought the story earlier this summer regarding Fallen Soldiers' Families Denied Cash As Insurers Profit to my attention. What I do know is the story was disgusting in its entirely. Please click on the link above to read about how these dirt bags, Prudential Financial Inc, treat families of vets and you will wonder no more as to why I hold the views I do regarding the F and I parts of our FIRE (finance, insurance, real estate) economy.

Below is just a snippet from the article;

"Lohman, a public health nurse who helps special-needs children, says she had always believed that her son’s life insurance funds were in a bank insured by the FDIC. That money -- like $28 billion in 1 million death-benefit accounts managed by insurers -- wasn’t actually sitting in a bank.

It was being held in Prudential’s general corporate account, earning investment income for the insurer. Prudential paid survivors like Lohman 1 percent interest in 2008 on their Alliance Accounts, while it earned a 4.8 percent return on its corporate funds, according to regulatory filings.

“I’m shocked,” says Lohman, breaking into tears as she learns how the Alliance Account works. “It’s a betrayal. It saddens me as an American that a company would stoop so low as to make a profit on the death of a soldier. Is there anything lower than that?”

Okay fast forward to today. Karl Denninger over at the Market Ticker brought to my attention today's story carried on the wires that unearths the news that the Veterans Agency Made Secret Deal Over Benefits.

The Bloomberg article outlines that;

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs failed to inform 6 million soldiers and their families of an agreement enabling Prudential Financial Inc. to withhold lump-sum payments of life insurance benefits for survivors of fallen service members, according to records made public through a Freedom of Information request.

The amendment to Prudential’s contract is the first document to show how VA officials sanctioned a payment practice that has spurred investigations by lawmakers and regulators. Since 1999, Prudential has used so-called retained-asset accounts, which allow the company to withhold lump-sum payments due to survivors and earn investment income on the money for itself.

You think this is bad. Hang on

The Sept. 1, 2009, amendment to Prudential’s contract with the VA ratified another unpublicized deal that had been struck between the insurer and the government 10 years earlier -- one that was never put into writing, this verbal agreement in 1999 provoked concern among top insurance officials of the agency, the documents released in the FOIA request show.

For a decade, until the contract was formally changed, Prudential wasn’t fulfilling its obligations to survivors of fallen service members, says Brendan Bridgeland, an insurance lawyer who runs the non-profit Center for Insurance Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Wait a minute, a U.S. government agency getting into verbal non-written agreements? Are you kidding me? I am sad to say Ms. Lohman, that there is something lower than that, the U.S agency in charge sanctioned and approved the act.

And then, as if this story could not turn out any worse, we get the obligatory appearance by Sergeant Schultz himself from Hogans Heroes;

U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates -- who was in office when the 2009 agreement was signed -- said when the VA started its probe that he had been unaware that survivors were being sent retained-asset accounts.

“Until today I actually believed that the families of our fallen heroes got a check for the full amount of their benefits,” Gates said at the time. “This came as news to me.”

Just in case you were wondering who runs Prudential Financial Inc., the unit responsible for this absolute travesty, it is one John Strangfeld who was the former Vice Chairman of the company before he replaced the previous Chairman Art Ryan.

Lets see now, maybe Mr. Strangfeld, like Mr. Ryan before him was completely and totally unaware that survivors were being sent retained-asset accounts as well, just like Sergeant Schultz, eeerr excuse me Defence Sec. Gates.

Better yet, maybe he and Prudential can pay a fine while neither admitting nor denying wrongdoing of course.!

Yeah that's the ticket, neither admit nor deny wrongdoing, and keep the loot. Pathetic little maggots.

I urge you to please put aside the fact that Prudential CEO Strangfeld received total compensation of $18.43 million for the year 2009 which was a decline of 15% from the prior year 2008.

Mr. Ryan, Mr. Strangfeld and the board over at Prudential should thank their lucky stars I am not the magistrate they hopefully will be arraigned to sit in front of in a court of law charged with sorting out this total dereliction of duty to put it mildly.

I want to wish survivors of fallen service members, people out there like Ms. Lohman, my families deepest sympathies and the sincere hope that someone in charge will rectify this mess ASAP and also have the onions to deal swiftly and harshly with those responsible for it.

In closing do you remember my piece last month Fredric Mishkin - Corrupt Imbecile?

In it I stated the following;

"Not only are those in charge, lights out stupid, they are in serious positions of policy influence and are on the take everywhere and always. We simply don't stand a chance while thugs like this are at the helm or still being listened to plain and simple."

"None of the "those in charge" group can be trusted. We must purge the entire lot, even if that means some good ones get lumped in with them. (What did Socrates say, oh yeah, silence is acceptance) Cancerous entities must be severed completely and destroyed if the host is to survive."


I am not trying to be Debbie downer here but when the flippin' Secretary of Defence doesn't know vets families are being denied payment, well at some point you have to admit the obvious. You can continue to avoid it or you can examine the evidence and face the facts, as painful, as embarrassing and as insulting as it may be.


Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48

Couple of Canadian Banks

A story today from back home, Majority of Canadians Living Paycheck to Paycheck, spurred me to have a look at some old friends given their heavy reliance on those paycheck to paycheck livers. Fist up is the Bank of Nova Scotia, ticker BNS. Below is a 10 year weekly view of the stock.

Now a close up of the prior chart via the 2 year weekly

Next up is the Royal Bank, ticker RY. A 10 year weekly look is found below.

Now the same chart on a 2 year weekly basis.



Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48

Monday, September 13, 2010

Quick Look at AAPL



Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Bonds.... Yet Again.

Don't know if you caught the story down in North Carolina about the Sheriffs Want Lists of Patients Using Painkillers. Note it's sheriffs plural not singular. It seems law enforcement want access to state computer records identifying anyone with prescriptions for powerful painkillers.

"Sheriffs made their pitch Tuesday to a legislative health care committee looking for ways to confront prescription drug abuse. Local sheriffs said that more people in their counties die of accidental overdoses than from homicides."


Maybe these prescription drug heads are a problem on the road just like drunk drivers and stoned drivers. Now I am no magistrate so I will defer to Judge Napolitano but what I want to know is who is the bigger threat on the road, Tina the soccer mom pumped full of prozac with a glass of wine in her or driving behind her neighbour George the salesman tricked up on oxycontin for that neck injury or Party Patty who just pulled over at the mall to have a hoot on her bowl? Tis a thought. One thing I do know I am not paying for Party Patty's joydom via my health care premiums like Tina and George but yet again I digress.

Bonds

Everyone loves to hate the bonds, I am talking U.S. Treasuries here, yet they continue to go up. I urge you to ignore the crowd on this issue, yes the same crowd who was predicting the same dire catastrophe for the Japanese bond market.

As for bonds in a bubble, I agree with Jim Chanos and that the hallmark indicator of a bubble is leverage or borrowed money.

So based on this I ask....

Have you bought bonds (individual U.S. treasury securities or T-bond funds) on margin?
Has you brother-in-law?
Has you neighbour?
Has anyone you know?

I remember back in the nirvanic bull market days (of tech) of 1999-2000 when genious' were in abundance and then again during the bull market days (of housing of 2007 when the pundits would reply to the the bears with this gem;

"if IBM or GE or Ford (take any Fortune 500 name) goes to (pick the outrageously low number), then you're gonna need a shotgun, ammo and water more than money.

Well I am here to inform you that if the bond market bears are correct and U.S. Treasury market is in a bubble and does implode heaven help us for
YOU WILL NEED THAT SHOTGUN, AMMO AND WATER more than your investments for damn sure!

I still believe all debt is either paid back on defauted upon. We had the mother of all bubbles in debt and credit creation. This is not being paid back. The boat is sinking faster (deflation) than those in charge can pump the water out via money and credit creation (inflation).

I suggest you pray that the U.S. Treasury market holds together or you will need to prepare for Weimar Germany, Argentina, or Zimbabwe or any other example of chaos throughout history. Remember this is just one idiot blogger's simpletonian opinion on the subject.

Housekeeping notes;

I was stopped out of my AAPL short today at $266.51 for a gain of just over 8 pts, gotta love a market that's 'run and gun'. Like the Lakers of old, for you youngsters out there that's Kareem, Magic, Nixon, Worthy, Cooper, Rambis got it now.


Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48

Not Cynical Enough?

Regular readers of this blog know how I feel about 'those in charge'. I have vacillated between "can they really be that stupid?" to "are they all just that corrupt?". The news that former Fed Governor Fredric Mishkin was paid $124K to write a glowing report on the Icelandic economy before it imploded is just a small example but it amply shows just how high up the food chain the rot goes.

I have remarked often, after watching what has transpired in totality, how those in charge who claim remedies for what ails us are in fact far worse than the disease. That they are either that stupid or that complicit. No one is shackled, no one goes to jail, no one has the gains disgorged. As a matter of fact they get promoted or called on air as a pundit. The whole thing is a complete and utter debacle that, as I have said before, future generations will study with awe and most surely contempt, marvelling at our society's collective apathy.

It is with this in mind that I want you to read the following piece submitted by a reader of Rick Ackerman's blog Rick's Picks. It is written by a trader, a Wayne Razzi and it is well worth your time. So without further adieu, here is Wayne's take on things...

Doomsayers Are Not Cynical Enough

September 9, 2010

[Like your editor, Rick’s Picks forum regular Wayne Razzi (aka “Red Will”) is a veteran floor-trader who grew up in South Jersey. When I asked him if he would like to contribute a guest commentary, I was not expecting the provocative tour de force that unfolds, step by step, below. In the essay, Will asserts nothing less that that the impending collapse of our economic system was meticulously engineered by financial and political sociopaths. Let me attest that his is not some whack-o conspiracy theory; rather, it is the closely-reasoned argument of a highly intelligent person who values truth sufficiently to have searched for it, in the form of an answer to a profoundly disturbing question, for many years. Judge for yourself whether his conclusions tally with your own thoughts as to why the American Dream is about to go bust. RA]

As a regular reader of Rick’s Picks and occasional commentator within the forum, I was happy to accept Rick’s offer to contribute a guest commentary. Unfortunately, my happiness faded rather quickly as each day of the week passed and with each, more and more commentary appeared within the forum. Normally I am pleased to read through the robust collection of viewpoints and argumentation. However, and quite regrettably, these are not normal times! With each day, and each comment, and each reply, I witnessed a slow motion, apathetic paraphrasing of much of my prepared commentary by faceless strangers!

So with my best-written plans bested by many of you bloviators. ;- ) , I elected to go with something entirely different instead of offering my all-too-similar take on many of the economic issues that were covered and subsequently expanded upon within the forum.


I have a few things in common with Rick, one of which is having been born and raised in southern New Jersey. We also share the fact that both of us spent at least a decade or so as a professional on-floor equity options market maker. I note this commonality because there is a tendency amongst peer traders to assume that everyone “knows what we know” and ironically, many of the same traders also believe that they have some sort of proprietary edge that many other traders do not possess. Thinking of this is what helped me to find what I hope will be a little fresh material for you.

I am going to present few disparate items here but I believe that there is one singular lesson that is worth learning and worth learning now more than at any other time in my career. I will start off with the “micro,” by which I mean something that I can testify to from having witnessed it within my own little world. I cannot speak for Rick, but I would suspect the same.

Incompetent, But Curious

After being hazed all day and into most evenings by my firm’s Options Specialists for about six months, I was given a seat on the trading floor. It is from that point on that I began the conversion from business school idealist to incompetent cynic. In fact, well before I officially became a trader, I witnessed “broad daylight” collusion every day. The myths of the “fair and orderly market” and the “competitive open outcry system” were dispelled almost immediately as soon as I had learned enough as a trainee to be able to slow down the frenetic action to a pace that was comprehensible. What do I mean? Why is this important? Well, in theory, the traders of options on a given stock are supposed to be competitors that do not cooperate with other members to set market prices on which the public will execute trades. The reality is that the main trader, typically the specialist, makes the bid-ask spread market and the majority of the time the entire trading crowd simply states their level of commitment to the market that he has made. Here is the problem, OUR watch-dog, the SEC, rarely if ever has done anything about this clear violation of the law. Many techniques and devices are employed to encourage market makers to play ball. Any time spent on some of the options floors over the years would have revealed this to the SEC. This means… they know it and they just do not care. They have always known it. This may not be a revelation here in 2010 with Rick’s “crowd” being a rather enlightened one, but 20 years ago this matter-of-fact flouting of the law initially stunned this “Econ/Finance” dual-major as these business practices were conspicuously absent from the textbooks. What does this prove? It proves what many of you — but until recently not nearly enough people — believed: The government is entirely about strategic, selective prosecution. Shocked, right? The government and the markets are corrupt! I am sure that many of you are floored! Hold on though, I am “going somewhere” with this as it is stated.

As you have probably already guessed, this “welcome to the real world of our markets” experience put me on a path that would shatter nearly all of my idealistic beliefs about a country with systems that I was raised to revere. Just in case you weren’t sure how corrupt things actually are within our markets, it’s my hope that any faith that you may have reserved is fully gone by now because if it can happen in plain view amongst competitors then much more can clearly occur behind closed doors. Let’s get back to that “assume that others know what you know” concept and in doing so, we’ll leap ahead in time by about five years.

Beneath the Surface

As the years in the options markets and on the floors and desks began to add up, less and less of the reality being presented to me actually made any sense to me at all. For the first five or so years of my career, the Internet wasn’t there to reference at all. The next few years brought some maturation to the Internet but the information available from it wasn’t nearly as raw and diverse as it is for us today. This made for tedious times when I would search for hours nearly every weeknight in an ongoing effort to learn more of the truth that I believed was out there somewhere. I gradually stopped feeling as though the marketplace was littered with cheaters and manipulators, as it always had been, and began to feel as though there was much more at work beneath the surface.

Yes, you are on to me again, I sensed the dreaded “conspiracy.” “Conspiracy theorist” isn’t the kind of description that most people would seek to invite upon themselves, but labels never really bothered me. I raise this because I want to encourage folks to stay on the path they are on in seeking the truth, despite the fact that I do not hold the answers, as I believe that the trends and developments that we’ve had to contend with over the past 20 years cannot be purely coincidental. These persistent and evolving feelings continued to develop and eventually led me to think of things within a simplistic biological construct in an attempt to draw the best analogy that I could. This was somewhat ironic because biology could very well be my area of greatest ignorance and not for a lack of competition. Fortunately, after searching for commentary that contained the analogies I was drawing, and before I was forced to relearn all the “stuff” from high school bio that I’d forgotten, a much more intelligent and well informed commentator brought forth the best description that I have found to describe what has and is happening to Uncle Sam and by extension his subjects. Her name is Catherine Austin Fitts, and although it remains impossible for me to verify her claims and research, her “take” on things seems the most plausible to me of all that I’ve researched and considered. Her profile has risen dramatically since I first encountered some of her work about 12 years ago but, in the case that readers haven’t come across her work, I encourage them to stop by her site even just to briefly peruse her writings. Her “type” of information (things like $2.3 TRILLION missing from our Federal Government) is what I was referring to when I noted how traders assume that other traders possess the same information. I hope that she will not mind me sharing this from her Solari website, as it is the basis for the operating thesis that I’ve co-opted ever since then:

Tapeworm Economy

In a tapeworm economy a small group of insiders centralize political and economic power at the expense of people, living things and the environment, in a manner that destroys real wealth. A tapeworm economy is one in which it is considered acceptable to make money from our popsicle index (Ed.- established societal standards) going down. In investment terms, it is an economy with a negative return on investment. It is parasitic in nature.

The way an actual tapeworm operates is to inject its host with a chemical that makes the host crave what is good for the tapeworm and bad for the host. So the Tapeworm Economy is adept at using media and education and numerous financial incentives to get us acting against our own strategic interests and instead supporting and depending on the Tapeworm.

The symptoms of the Tapeworm are many – narcotics trafficking that targets our children, runaway exploitive and predatory corporate practices such as the patenting of life, terminator seed and the destruction of our topsoil and food supply, fraudulent inducement of debt to homeowners, students and consumers, suppression of knowledge and renewable energy technology, criminal mismanagement of government credit and resources, black budget operations and the manipulation of currency, financial and precious metal prices and markets. These practices introduce organized crime throughout all aspects of our lives… these transactions drain our families and neighborhoods on a daily basis – much like a tapeworm drains its host.

A Revelation from Ms. Fitts

Again, this may not seem entirely like a revelation to many of you now, but as noted, I was by good fortune able to stumble upon Ms. Fitts’ commentary and website back in the late 1990s, if memory serves. Hers along with the commentary of assorted others gave me the confidence I needed to leave the legacy thought-paradigms that I’d been indoctrinated in as are most American kids. The more I thought about things from this newly confident perspective the more the cognitive dissonance receded from my mind. In an effort to bring a little more tangibility, I’ll over-simplify an example by using the dominant thought of the late 90’s era:

The market did nothing until the Republicans surged in the 1994 elections. Wall Street is supposedly tight with them so they must not like Clinton and thus his administration must not like Wall Street. So even though almost all of these earnings and economic reports seem entirely too perfect vs. expectations, Clinton’s SEC et al. wouldn’t let “Wall Street Fat Cats” and Evil Corporatists slide if they could nail them.

Hopefully you now have a sense of how much clearer things became for me when I felt confident enough to abandon the conventional consensus and traditional schools of thought regarding the current set of underlying problems. A technique that has always worked well for me is the old “step back and see the big picture,” especially when things seem either too perfect or incongruent. Detaching and deconstructing, drawing analogies and then putting them into perspective against what I’m seeing or sensing has normally helped to keep me slightly ahead of the consensus in the markets. This is important because as an options market maker you need to not only be concerned with the now but possibly two years out and beyond as you are making markets on options that can repeatedly affect your risk profile for those durations. The liquidity in long-term outer-month options is not nearly as reliable as the front months so you had better be pretty sure of yourself when you pull a two-year trigger. I did not find this to be simple task because there is not much time left for esoteric research after you have been focused on managing risks to yield profits in highly-bubbletized markets for most of the day.

The Payoff…

I do apologize for feeling it necessary to work some of my personal background into this piece, but now that I have, we can finally get to the payoff I’ve been driving towards. Much of what you’re about to read may no longer carry the shock value that it once did, but that’s always the case from what I’ve observed. Over 90 percent of our peers will always seem to treat the minority opinion with nothing less than disdain, only to claim in retrospect that “…well, everyone knew that. That’s no surprise.” Yes, they are pretty quick to price it into their working model when the rest of the majority has finally acknowledged that the unlikely has become the actual.

It’s been about 20 years since the “PAX Americana” and “peace dividend” discussions began to pollute the mainstream dialogue. So what happened? How is it that the USA now finds itself at the mercy of the central planners in communist China? Wait, hasn’t the MSM repeatedly told us that we weren’t in asset-price bubbles and that true prosperity was constantly being created as a result of these series of non-bubbles? What happened here in a “nutshell”?

Here is my brief “nutshell.” The last 20 years of faux “prosperity” are primarily the result of absurdly misguided credit expansion and various forms of hyper-manipulation (accounting fraud, falsified statistics and reports, ) engineered by various organizations and entities of various sizes, some of which work in concert. As for “backup” on my claims, I’d cite many of the same items that several other Rick’s Picks commentators have in their comments and possibly a few of my own: John Williams (Shadow Stats) on Statistical Fraud; John Hussman on pervasive Accounting Fraud; FASB Accounting Standards Degradation; Revelation of the True Value of and subsequent Humiliation of the Ratings Agencies; FED Serial Bubble Fomentation / Deformation of the natural Business Cycle; 20 years of housing appreciation and related activity condensed into roughly 5 years; various episodes such as Dell computer’s adding an estimated $1.8 billion over two years to the bottom line as the result of writing put options against their own share price while Michael Dell waxed on with boundless optimism; not having to account for employee stock options for years; Seagate’s filling warehouses with hard drives and counting them in “Sales” to “beat the number”; Henry Blodget-esque IPO-related fraud; the effective “Enronization” of corporations; Wall Street and our government at every level. Etcetera.

Web of Collusion

In 2010, most of the items listed above have been acknowledged, but I can tell you that arguing about these items and issues in real-time was not a pleasant experience, as the key information was not easily referenced. Most of the contra-side arguments focused on how “complex” a web of collusion would have been needed to pull off such thorough deception. The problem with this position for me has always been that the key vulnerability of the system is too easily overlooked. I’m referring to what is now popularly identified as the mainstream media (MSM). My perspective is that “if you have the MSM, you have all you need”. It shocks me still that most of the professional traders that I know still take their news from these propaganda outlets. The unfortunately reality for me though is that it all flows from there.

Another argument that I’ve heard quite a bit over the years is that the “profit motive” would serve to incentivize an MSM member or organization to report reality. I’m both surprised and unsurprised at times when I find myself listening to this argument for what seems like the thousandth time. Let’s just step back for a moment and consider things another way. The first rule of investing is preservation of capital, at least in theory. That being the case, why is it that the MSM (the people’s watchdog) has never exposed the widespread fraud that has underpinned all of these bubble-driven markets over the past 20 years? Why is it that they treated non-believers with scorn on the rare occasions when they actually permitted them to appear on air? Why didn’t they learn from the first bubble and become more skeptical in their treatment? Where were the investigative pieces, the exposés, that only seem to be broadcast-worthy after the inevitable pop has occurred?

USA Rapidly Deteriorating

Sticking with the step-back-perspective theme with an eye towards wrapping things up, let’s consider how dire things are at present. I hate to add even more length to this piece but it is clear from just a few headlines that the USA is in rapid deterioration mode, and not just fiscally/economically:

  • A nearly perfectly divided electorate that’s addicted to the right/left paradigm
  • Police are ignoring calls for certain serious crimes yet indoctrinated citizens are more fearful of firearms than of having to defend their families and homes against illegally armed thugs with no support from law enforcement
  • Education here is largely a qualitative and fiscal farce
  • In what could be described as an unimaginable achievement, popular culture now makes anything prior to the 70’s appear to have been a modern Renaissance period
  • Our government is dedicated to Homeland Security at airports but our borders are porous. The MSM will never highlight this contradiction. Is it possible that “the war on drugs” only applies to those that aren’t with the company?
  • Perpetual wars are by and large accepted when they are even thought of at all
  • And of those plans to bring back those jobs that are never coming back and about revitalizing and retooling those manufacturing centers that will never hum again?
  • Can we really Smartphone and service business our way out of the destructive vortex that we’ve allowed them to conjure at will with an end goal of debt enslavement?
  • What I refer to as the “Manipulation Cartels” have amassed and consolidated power like never before
  • The “button pushers” seem to want to implode the system but on their timeline and with some fragments of realism included to maintain “believability”

Now, does this seem like a country that should legitimately be on the verge of a genuine and powerful bull market leg towards new highs? I’m not sure about your life, but I’ve found it difficult to get my best-laid plans to work out even when I’ve done everything right consistently over a good period of time! Yet with our society crumbling into freefall before our eyes we’re told that the market is wildly undervalued. As I’ve noted in the forum, I do believe that the market can remain detached from realities for a good long time. New highs wouldn’t shock me at all because I’ve seen how powerful and resourceful the manipulation can be at times. What would still shock me is the number of people that wouldn’t question the legitimacy of such a scenario. By the way, are we sure that it is preferable that this dysfunctional prison-barge-of-a-society really is worth saving in its current form? Do you really have confidence that any of our real problems will be solved while working within this entirely gamed system?

Dystopia Is ‘In’

It is clear to see that the present and future are much bleaker for the people but that the elites have done a fine job to this point to preserve and expand their positions and thus have at least in relative terms set themselves up quite nicely for the next round of disparity expansion. The Bravo channel may not have officially pronounced it yet but Dystopia is “in” now and there’s a good chance that it will have more staying power than the leisure suit.

It is my belief that more Americans need to leave the type of thinking that they, like I, were raised to perform behind for their own survival. Because of what are generally described as libertarian beliefs and as I believe the quagmire to be hopelessly intractable, I strongly advocate peaceful secession from what is still referred to as the United States of America. It’s my wish that more folks would realize that we’re only united by the chains of debt enslavement and that it makes little practical sense to allow malicious statists on the other side of the continent to lord over the lives of our families and children. Ask yourself why the federal government should still enjoy our confidence? It, along with our representatives, has epically failed us in every conceivable way. It eludes me as to how folks can actually believe that it can all be attributed to political incompetence and chance. I would find it exceedingly difficult to calculate the odds of this rapid and complete collapse being pure in nature. I had planned to spin through the Carousel of Frauds, from NAFTA to the era of the PC to the era of the Internet; and with both productivity gains, to the commodities manipulation to the housing bubble and finally to the fact that it’s all been made to happen by the same cartels of legalized criminals, that despite it all, still control our lives to a large degree! But I’m literally 10x over my requested word limit already! [Perfectly all right, Will. I’d be eager to read this at book length. RA]

If You’re Unconvinced…

If you remain an unconvinced true believer in the American Way and believe that people like me have been taken in by the “conspiracy theory” cottage industry, all that I can respond with is, “You may be right”. It is impossible to know for certain what is referred to as the “absolute truth.” Nonetheless, I would ask that you only consider one more suggestion that I make here: Learn how to implement what is known by options investors as the “collar” strategy for your portfolio just in case your feelings change at some point in the near future.

Obviously, as a regular reader, I value Rick’s perspective, but I feel as though I differ with him rather significantly with regards to the levels and totality of manipulation of various forms that are at work not only in the markets but that has permeated nearly everything at this point in time.

Having spent nearly 20 years doing what I can to uncover the truth after continually witnessing the statistically improbable occur just on the heels of the highly unlikely, I’ll conclude with this: No matter how cynical one thinks he or she is, I’ll take the contra-side every time and bet that the overwhelming majority of investors are not nearly cynical enough in their analysis. My friends, these financial sociopaths and their sociopol lackeys play for keeps.


Thanks for your input Wayne, very much appreciated!

For those that took the time to read Wayne's missive you can all now return to your regularly scheduled programming.

Good speculating to you all and please remember to never forget that "an investor is a speculator who made a mistake and will not admit it".


Open Positions:
Long 1 unit Direxion Large Cap 3X Bear ticker BGZ @ $19.34
Long 2 units Direxion Small Cap 3X Bear ticker TZA @ $60.30
Long 1 unit Direxion Emerging Mkts 3X Bear ticker EDZ @ $60.50
Long 2 units Direxion Financial 3X Bear ticker FAZ @ $19.65
Long 2 units Ultrashort Xinhua China ticker FXP @ $42.45
Long 1 unit Ultrashort Real Estate ticker SRS @ $49.10
Long 2 units Direxion Tech 3X Bear ticker TYP @ $52.60
Long 1 unit US Dollar Bull ticker UUP @ $22.52 stop @ $22.52
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 92.15 stop @ $92.15
Long 1 unit ishares Barclays 20yr Treas ticker TLT @ 93.48 stop @ $93.48
Short 1 unit Apple ticker AAPL @ $275.20 stop @ $266.50