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October 2009

Recs

31

Wow what a fantastic rant

October 28, 2009 – Comments (5)

Wow, what a fantastic rant.  I haven't had the time to read all of this yet, but I'm definitely going to.  I particularly agree with Grantham's thoughts on Greespan, Bernanke, Summers, and Geithner.   [more]

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9

New York Fed’s Secret Choice to Pay for Swaps Hits Taxpayers

October 28, 2009 – Comments (3)

Here's something that should get you good and mad:  [more]

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12

Positive news from the housing sector

October 28, 2009 – Comments (9)

Existing home sales were reported this morning.  Out of all of the statistics that are contained in the release, the one that jumped out at me the most was the following:  [more]

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21

GMAC is the definition of a black hole

October 28, 2009 – Comments (1)

GMAC has become the definition of a black hole, where government money goes in and just disappears over, and over, and over again.  This company...or whatever it is because it's sort of affiliated with General Motors, but not really, sort of affiliated with Cerberus (or at least it used to be), sort of affiliated with Chrysler Financial (it's picking up all of the business of that train wreck), a third owned by the U.S. government already...is an absolute mess that's up there with the worst-run organizations in the world like CIT Group, AIG, Citi.  [more]

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16

Outstanding Financial Times Interview with George Soros

October 27, 2009 – Comments (2)

The following is a portion of an excellent Financial Times interview with George Soros that I came across this afternoon.  The full text is available here: Transcript: George Soros interview  [more]

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22

Who on Earth keeps giving this guy money?!?!

October 27, 2009 – Comments (3)

Back in February I wrote the following:  [more]

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11

Is the U.S. headed for a period of Argentine-like stagflation?

October 27, 2009 – Comments (7)

Yesterday's WSJ contained an interesting Op-Ed piece on Argentina.  The bulk of the article talks about how the country's government is cracking down on the press, reigning in their freedom in a weak attempt to keep the current regime’s popularity.  [more]

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28

Here's a shocker: institutions front-run analysts' calls

October 26, 2009 – Comments (3) | RELATED TICKERS: GS , C , JPM

I came across a reference to an interesting study conducted by Jennifer Juergens of the University of Texas at Austin and Laura Lindsey of Arizona State University this weekend.  The duo's study took a close look at the movement of individual stocks in the days leading up to a ratings change by an analyst.  Not surprisingly, the study found that stocks often moved up prior to an analysts' upgrade and vice versa in the days before an official call was made.  [more]

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10

The Start of a cyclical recovery for the auto sector? - Part 2

October 26, 2009 – Comments (2) | RELATED TICKERS: F , TM , HMC

Last week I wondered aloud if October represents the beginning of a cyclical recovery for U.S. auto sales.  In that post, I cited estimates from Bank of America / Merril Lynch and True Car that October 2009 U.S. light vehicle sales will improve from last month and only be down single digits versus the same period in 2008.  [more]

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20

Sin Pays...now that's my kind of back-testing

October 26, 2009 – Comments (5) | RELATED TICKERS: MO , DEO , WIN

Everyone has seen the funds and investment strategies that are focused on "sin" stocks, like tobacco, alcohol, gambling, etc, however I've never seen statistical evidence that these stocks outperform the overall market...until now.  [more]

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10

Bill Ackman & Barron's like Prison

October 23, 2009 – Comments (3) | RELATED TICKERS: CXW , O

A week or two after Barron's wrote a large, bullish article on publicly traded prison operators, the famous investor Bill Ackman made Corrections Corporation of America (CXW) the focus of his presentation of the recent Value Investing Congress.    [more]

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18

I DARE you to rec this post

October 23, 2009 – Comments (3) | RELATED TICKERS: RE

I'm sorry, I know that it's bad but it was too easy after seeing all of the Truth and Dare going on around here lately.

Deej

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14

Will October represent the beginning of a cyclical recovery for the auto sector?

October 23, 2009 – Comments (2) | RELATED TICKERS: F , TM , HMC

As probably the second largest item that consumers will purchase in their lives, after a home, to me auto sales are an excellent indicator of what shape the consumer is in and in turn where the U.S. economy, which is still heavily dependent upon consumer spending, is headed.  [more]

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17

I told you to buy PWE this morning (+9%). Here's my latest valuation attempt.

October 22, 2009 – Comments (3) | RELATED TICKERS: HTE , PWE

I always believed that the market was not valuing my largest energy holding, Penn West (PWE) properly.  However, I never realized just how undervalued until I saw how much the South Korean national oil company was paying for Harvest's assets this morning.  [more]

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13

Someone finally realized how undervalued CANROYs are

October 22, 2009 – Comments (5) | RELATED TICKERS: HTE , PWE , PGH

I have been squawking for what seems like years about how undervalued Canadian Royalty Trusts aka CANROYs are.  These companies have been awarded disappointing multiples by Mr. Market for ever since the Canadian's government's shabby treatment of them and investors during the "Halloween Massacre" when it pulled the rug out from under them.  [more]

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20

Why do I have the sudden, uncontrollable urge to buy Penny Stocks?

October 22, 2009 – Comments (10) | RELATED TICKERS: AM.DL2

Holy spam.  Good grief.

Deej

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8

China’s Economy Grows 8.9%, Fastest Pace in a Year

October 22, 2009 – Comments (0)

Not surprisingly, China's economy posted rapid growth last quarter.  To me, the question is whether this stimulus and liquidity-fueled growth spurt is sustainable given the likely tepid demand for Chinese exports from the U.S. in the near future.  China will likely have to spur domestic consumption in order to maintain this momentum.

China’s Economy Grows 8.9%, Fastest Pace in a Year

Deej  [more]

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12

“Liquor before Beer… In the Clear”

October 21, 2009 – Comments (1)

I've always liked David Einhorn (Greenlight Capital) and I attempt to read anything that he has written that I can get my hands on.  If I didn't like Einhorn already, I certainly would after reading the following title of the address that he gave earlier this week at the Value Investing Congress, “Liquor before Beer… In the Clear” HA what a classic.  Kudos to the blog Sense on Cents for providing a link to the text of his speech.  It is an excellent read and I encourage everyone to check it out.  [more]

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45

Note to White House: Stop Listening to Idiots, Start Listening to Volker

October 21, 2009 – Comments (9) | RELATED TICKERS: BAC , JPM

While I did not vote for either major Presidential candidate, one of the things that I liked best about President Obama while he was running was that he added Paul Volker to his team of economic advisors.  When I heard this I thought to myself, "That was a smart move.  Volker is one of the few people who is independent enough, smart enough, and has the intestinal fortitude to do what this country needs to get it back on track."  [more]

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33

How Uncle Sam is killing your savings

October 21, 2009 – Comments (6)

Despite what the idiotic article in this week's Barron's says, I realize that the government has little choice but to keep interest rates as low as possible for the foreseeable or risk the economy completely falling off of a cliff.  However, as a yield-hound who likes to invest in dividend-paying stocks and bonds that obviously pay interest this article struck a chord with me:  [more]

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19

TMFDeej Top Pick - Vodafone

October 20, 2009 – Comments (5) | RELATED TICKERS: VOD

Last month I did a brief write-up on why I thought the European telecom giant Vodafone (VOD) is a good buy at this level.  A few of the things that I like best about VOD are the fact that it's cheap, unlike so many companies out there its revenue was still growing...even in the midst of a terrible recession, it pays a massive, sustainable dividend, it stands to benefit from increased smart phone use, and it has a hidden potential catalyst that I'll get to later.  It definitely is one of my top places for new money right now.  [more]

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16

The Big CAT Issues an Optimistic Forecast

October 20, 2009 – Comments (7) | RELATED TICKERS: CAT

I'm tired of all of these earnings beats.  I've basically been so inundated with beat after beat after beat of analysts' estimates that I've become numb to them.  What I'm looking for now in companies is revenue growth.  Companies can only cut expenses for so long.  Eventually they will have to grow revenue to show an improvement in earnings.  [more]

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20

The Little Firm that Overcharges Investors? aka A Magic Ripoff?

October 19, 2009 – Comments (8)

As someone who has read and really enjoyed Joel Greenblatt's books in the past I always listen to what he has to say.  His work "You Can Be a Stock Market Genius" is one of my favorite investing books of all-time.  Having said that, to me Greenblatt's latest venture seems like a complete joke.  [more]

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23

An Inconvenient Forecast / The Nutty Inside Trader

October 19, 2009 – Comments (0) | RELATED TICKERS: USO , UNG

I saw the headline "An Inconvenient Forecast" at the bottom of the screen while I was getting ready for work this morning and I instantly laughed out loud.  While it's not exactly PC, it is a classic.  [more]

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18

OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO No!

October 19, 2009 – Comments (4) | RELATED TICKERS: O

Today kicks off an interesting conference called the "Value Investing Congress."  In the past a ton of great stock ideas have been presented at this symposium.  Not only do good ideas come out of events like this, but the speeches that the famous investors who pitch their ideas make often move individual stocks.  [more]

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22

Letting the fox guard the henhouse

October 19, 2009 – Comments (7) | RELATED TICKERS: GS

Is it just me or does this piece of news strike others as being just wrong as well:  [more]

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19

Niall Ferguson believes that the dollar will fall another 20%

October 16, 2009 – Comments (2) | RELATED TICKERS: USD , UDN

I'm not sure that his opinion counts for much, but famous historian Niall Ferguson told Bloomberg in a recent interview that he believes the value of the U.S. dollar will drop by another 20% versus the euro over the next several years.  [more]

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24

Shocking realization of the morning...GE Cap and BofA suck.

October 16, 2009 – Comments (11) | RELATED TICKERS: BAC , GE

Here's a shocking realization that Mr. Market just seems to be realizing this morning...  [more]

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13

Add another to my long reading list

October 16, 2009 – Comments (2)

  [more]

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34

What the hedge fund manager who played the mortgage mess better than anyone thinks about where we're headed

October 15, 2009 – Comments (4)

Even though I do not have a Bloomberg terminal, I subscribe to Bloomberg Magazine.  It's very well done.  While perusing the new issue at lunch today I came across a fascinating article about Paolo Pellegrini.  A native Italian who attended Harvard business school, Pellegrini was one of the key people at John Paulson's hedge fund when it made its staggeringly successful bet against sub-prime mortgages that propelled Paulson's Credit Opportunities fund to a 589.6% gain in 2007.  [more]

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20

Dollar Down = Stocks Up

October 15, 2009 – Comments (17) | RELATED TICKERS: USD , UDN

According to Barclays Capital, "since 2003, dollar weakness has gone hand-in-hand with equity rallies." The bank's economists estimate currency depreciation helped to reduce the trade deficit, which added 1.1 percentage points to gross domestic product growth in the first half of 2009 from a year earlier.  [more]

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26

Being bearish on the dollar and short U.S. equities is inconsistent & is proving to be a losing trade

October 12, 2009 – Comments (22) | RELATED TICKERS: UDN , USD

I see a lot of people out there (at least on CAPS) who are bearish on the U.S. dollar, yet they are short all sorts of stuff. Being almost universally short U.S. stocks in your CAPS portfolio and bearish on the dollar at the same time seems inconsistent to me at best.  [more]

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17

Are the insiders wrong?

October 12, 2009 – Comments (17) | RELATED TICKERS: IN

I came across an interesting statistic while reading the always bearish Alan Abelson's column in Barron's this weekend.    [more]

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10

Test your knowledge of auto industry brands

October 12, 2009 – Comments (7) | RELATED TICKERS: CAR.DL2

Someone forwarded me the following quick, fun game this morning.  It tests one's knowledge on branding in the auto sector.  Take it for a spin and share how you do in the comments section.  [more]

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14

Is GameStop the next Blockbuster?

October 09, 2009 – Comments (6) | RELATED TICKERS: GME , BLOKA.DL

I was thinking about this very subject a few weeks ago as I downloaded a game from the XBox Live Marketplace and the following article reminded me of it, Video-game business still grappling with digital distribution  [more]

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15

Sorry that I almost ran the company into the ground, now where's my $70 mil?

October 09, 2009 – Comments (2) | RELATED TICKERS: BAC

I realize that he has contracts in place and that this sum was accumulated over the course of 40 years, but still something seriously rubs me the wrong way about this:  [more]

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11

Saudis ask for aid if world cuts dependence on oil + Short of the Day

October 09, 2009 – Comments (1) | RELATED TICKERS: OPEN.DL

The only thing that comes to mind when one reads this article is, WHAT?!?!  [more]

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13

Lunar freaking colonists? / It was the Dukes! It was the Dukes!

October 09, 2009 – Comments (16)

A few random thoughts:  [more]

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11

The worst is behind us, and we're seeing aspects of recovery,"

October 09, 2009 – Comments (1) | RELATED TICKERS: GOOGL

I came across some interesting quotes from Google CEO Eric Schmidt this morning.  Here's his thoughts on the current state of the economy:   [more]

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23

Forget Friday's headline jobs number, weekly jobless claims & U6 point to continued improvement in the labor market

October 08, 2009 – Comments (22)

I don't care what the headline monthly unemployment report that the BLS released last week said, behind the scenes the jobs situation continues to improve.  [more]

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32

Is the drop in the dollar really a bad thing?

October 06, 2009 – Comments (22) | RELATED TICKERS: USD , UDN

I've been bearish on the U.S. dollar for a long time now.  However, I'm not one of those ferocious grizzly bears who believes that the dollar is about to implode and we're headed for hyperinflation.  I'm more of a cuddly Koala bear who believes that we are headed for a relatively orderly, steady decline in the value of the dollar.  [more]

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35

Kudos to Paul Volker for telling it like it is

October 01, 2009 – Comments (6) | RELATED TICKERS: VO , L , KR

This recent quote from Paul Volker is possibly the best quote that I have ever seen from anyone that is even remotely close to being involved in the government:  [more]

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14

Final Total - U.S. Auto Sales for September

October 01, 2009 – Comments (0) | RELATED TICKERS: F , TM , HMC

Well, the numbers are in and things were slightly better for the U.S. auto industry than the estimate that I provided in my previous post.  Light vehicle sales for the month came in at just under 750,000 (746,000), which is down 22% year-over-year (my previous estimate was down 25%).  [more]

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7

Final Total - U.S. Auto Sales for September

October 01, 2009 – Comments (1) | RELATED TICKERS: F , TM , HMC

Well, the numbers are in and things were slightly better for the U.S. auto industry than the estimate that I provided in my previous post.  Light vehicle sales for the month came in at just under 750,000 (746,000), which is down 22% year-over-year (my previous estimate was down 25%).  [more]

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7

Preliminary Estimate: U.S. Light Vehicle Sales Down 25% Y-O-Y

October 01, 2009 – Comments (2) | RELATED TICKERS: F , TM , HMC

The automakers have slowly started to announce their sales results.  After speaking with a few people and looking at a few press releases it looks like U.S. light vehicle sales were down around 25% year-over-year in September.  If so, that would put the total at over the 700,000 level, say 710,000 to 725,000 or so.  [more]

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12

IHS Global Insight forecasts 10.3 million units for U.S. auto industry in 2009 & 11.2 million in 2010

October 01, 2009 – Comments (0) | RELATED TICKERS: F , TM , HMC

Manufacturers are set to publish their September auto sales results today.  As I mentioned in a post earlier this month the Cash for Clunkers induced hangover is going to be ugly.  Manufacturers were unprepared for the surge in demand and dealer inventory levels are extremely low.  I'll post an update on the Sept. numbers later on today.  [more]

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10

IMF: world economy recovering faster than expected

October 01, 2009 – Comments (2)

Here's an interesting bit of news:  [more]

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