Latest Posts

  • April Update and Mid-Month Rankings

    This post is a follow-on from the Mid-April Results, published earlier today. It is for Preferred Members. Markets were quite the roller coaster today. From 1:00 PM to the close, SPY rose close to 300 points. There is a great battle underway between the bulls and the bears as to which direction these markets will head next. This fight produces [...]

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  • Mid-April Results

    There is, as the saying goes, good news and bad news regarding markets. First, the bad news — markets have been terrible so far this year. All benchmarks representing major market segments are negative. There is some good news, at least of a minor sort, for preferred members: Each market benchmark is off less than 1% year-to-date, although the volatility [...]

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  • General Market Commentary — ETFs

    Markets began this week on a high note but continue to behave erratically. I recently wrote a piece entitled “Do You Belong in the Stock Market?” which I encourage you to read if you haven’t already. Under normal circumstances, the answer for most of us to this question would likely be a resounding “no.” Alas, circumstances are not normal and [...]

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Economics

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Star Parker is Not An Economist

Star Parker is a remarkable person, but she is not an economist. Perhaps that is a key reason she sees the obvious while “real” economists don’t. The so-called professionals need to be blinded by data, trends, regression analyses and differential equations. Common sense is displaced by form and technique. It is as if so-called economists want to make things more [...]

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Investing In A Pretend Economy

We live in a pretend economy. It is important to recognize this condition, especially if you are an investor. Current market behavior is concerning.  Bonds and stocks remain volatile and near record levels. Markets ignore the continuing stagnation in the pretend economy, buoyed apparently by government liquidity injections. To justify investing today in these markets, one must anticipate one or [...]

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Hume, Keynes, Mises, Kuhn and Mankiw

Regular readers know that I am fond of using quotes to emphasize issues or make points. These quotes, especially when they are old, show how there is very little new in the world and that our ancestors, in many respects, were as wise or wiser than we. Too often knowledge is lost or ignored simply on the basis of its [...]

Investing

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Do You Belong In The Stock Market?

How bad have markets been recently? If you are watching them day by day or week by week recently, they seem severe. Is this reaction because we have been spoiled and expect markets to always go up? Or, is something else going on? This chart shows SPY from January 2012 to the present. Each bar represents a week of activity: [...]

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Today’s Markets

Equity markets are getting hammered today. All major US averages are now down for the year. The sell-off today is driving down International markets as well. At 1:00 PM EST the declines seem to be picking up speed. Precious metals are holding up, thus far. If you are betting on these markets, (and yes, “betting” as in gambling is the [...]

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Early April Selection Results

This post is a short update for Preferred Members. Today was a great day for US equities (yesterday was good also), but current markets have wide swings and are erratic. I believe there were four consecutive down days prior to yesterday. Expect the volatility to continue as we approach May. Will the “sell in May and go away” dampen markets? [...]

Politics

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Why Elections No Longer Matter

Many argue that elections no longer matter. I tend to agree, although it is difficult to explain why. The article below deals with this issue. In a wonderful piece in American Thinker, Daren Jonescu provides his interpretation of the stacked political deck known as elections. The institutionalism of Socialism and tyranny infects both parties. Both fight each other until their scam [...]

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California Should Be Embarrassed

The old saying that you are known by the company you keep should embarrass California. In such a large state, can they not find qualified representatives? This email came in from a friend. I haven’t verified it, probably because it seems so plausible. I apologize if it is not true, but its value lies in the message that it conveys. [...]

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Puzzles of Socialism

This email, author unknown, reflects the puzzles of Socialism and the current state of intelligence in this country: The definition of Conundrum is something that is puzzling or confusing; a riddle. Here are six Conundrums of socialism in the United States of America: 1. America is capitalist and greedy – yet half of the population is subsidized. 2. Half of [...]

Other

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Careful What You Wish For

Is there a better picture than this one? Doesn’t it describe our situation reasonably well? H/T Walter

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Cherry Tree and President

The apochryphal story of George Washington confessing to cutting down a cherry tree is captured in this painting. Washington was noted for his integrity. Wonder what fable might arise regarding our current president. There are many to choose from although none worth commemorating in art. Here are a few for aspiring artists: H/T John Rolls for Obama Cartoon Barack Obama [...]

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The Good Kerrey on The Bad President

It is getting harder and harder to hide the disrespect and disgust that people have for President Obama. Increasingly, Obama is seen as a bad president, one that has been an abysmal failure on both domestic and foreign affairs. Jimmy Carter, in hindsight, appears to have been effective. Except for a small cadre of cultist followers, the dissatisfaction is palpable. [...]