Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Blacklist Bought out by Netflix for $2 million per episode

Talk about paying up for content.

“The Blacklist” just earned a lot of green.
The NBC series, which stars James Spader, has been acquired by Netflix for the hefty sum of $2 million per episode, an individual with knowledge of the deal told TheWrap on Thursday.

At least the show can get a bit more adult if they want since it won't be on network television. The big question is if more people will subscribe to Netflix because of this buyout. 

Bearish Bear says Market will drop from 30% to 60%: Said the same thing in 2009 and 2012

Sometimes these bears like David Tice are in religion mode.

Being extremely bearish on stocks is not a new position for Tice, who said in 2009 that the S&P 500 would go to 400, and in October 2012 said the market, "really seems like it seemed in early '08."

This chart from Morningstar shows the performance of the fund over the last ten years, with $10,000 invested in the fund worth $5,340 today. In contrast, $10,000 invested in the S&P 500 over the same period would be worth $22,244 today.

Yeah his fund would have cost you $4660 in losses if you stuck with him for 10 years. An index fund would have more than doubled your money. A broken clock is wrong 99% of the time.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Boehner Profited from Inversions!: So what. If you have an S&P500 Index Fund you Did Too

I love how Bloomberg has a veiled attempt at saying that Boehner is somehow crooked for owning Medtronic and Coviden shares.

While U.S. House Speaker John Boehner and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp have resisted calls for a crackdown on companies adopting overseas addresses to pay lower taxes, both have made money off one of the deals. They also have investments at risk of losing value because of government action. 

The two lawmakers reported the sale of stock in Covidien Plc within nine days of Medtronic Inc. saying it was planning a takeover, an announcement that sent Dublin-based Covidien’s shares near a 52-week high. The deal, one of several that have sparked a national debate over U.S. corporate tax policy, would put the combined company’s headquarters in Ireland and reduce its tax rate. 

They profited from inversions! The horror! The funny thing is that I profited from the same inversion because I am long an S&P500 Index Fund and sure enough the evil tax evaders are in there. Most likely if you have a 401k or a Retirement fund of any kind you probably own shares in Medtronic or Coviden as well. How unpatriotic of just about every American with a retirement fund that is invested in the stock market. This whole "inversion shaming" is such a joke.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Real Reason Why Corporations are Inverting: 35% Tax on Everying You Make is a Strait Rip-Off

This article sums up inversion in a nutshell.

The purpose of an inversion has never been, and never could be, and never will be, "ooh, Canada has a 15 percent tax rate, and the U.S. has a 35 percent tax rate, so we can save 20 points of taxes on all our income by moving." Instead the main purpose is always: "If we're incorporated in the U.S., we'll pay 35 percent taxes on our income in the U.S. and Canada and Mexico and Ireland and Bermuda and the Cayman Islands, but if we're incorporated in Canada, we'll pay 35 percent on our income in the U.S. but 15 percent in Canada and 30 percent in Mexico and 12.5 percent in Ireland and zero percent in Bermuda and zero percent in the Cayman Islands."

That means they can take their profits from Mexico, Ireland, Bermuda, etc. and take it back up to Canada and deploy it how they see fit. Rather then try to game the American system so that they don't have to pay 35% on every penny they make no matter where it came from.

This article does a good job of saying that they made that money in Ireland and not the US. So they used Irish roads, fire department, haggis stands, etc. and Ireland only asks 12.5% taxes for that privilege. Why should Burger King have to pay 35% on that Irish money? They pay 35% on their American profits already so that should be their so-called "fair-share."

Burger King Goes the Tax Inversion Route: Boycott Everything Scarborough Because Every Company Lowers their Taxes

They have a duty to shareholders to be fiscally responsible. If they move their headquarters to Canada in order to stay competitive with McDonalds and Wendys then they should do it. These boycotters are full of it as well.

Activist group is sponsoring a petition to scuttle the “Whopper Tax Dodge” or else institute a boycott. The petition has more than 1,000 signatures.

MSNCB TV host Joe Scarborough called for a Burger King boycott. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) did too, saying in a statement, “Burger King’s decision to abandon the United States means consumers should turn to Wendy’s Old Fashioned Hamburgers or White Castle sliders.”

I wonder if they plan on boycotting Apple because they use all sorts of ways to pay only 18%? I mean they aren't paying their so-called fair share according to these dweebs. Forget the fact that they actually paid 13 billion in taxes. That is roughly the nominal GDP of Namibia.

Maybe Scarborough needs to toss his iPhone (if he has one) and buy a Samsung instead. Of course Samsung only pays 24% in taxes (likely it is much lower depending on what they do to mitigate taxes) which is far lower than our 35% rip-off rate. They aren't paying their fair share either. Maybe Joe Scarborough needs to take up semaphore and throw his phones/pads/computers away.

#TheWorstPerson: Floridian Doug Wilkey Tried to have a Kids Lemonaide Stand Shut Down

Now this is terrible for a grown man, one Doug Wilkey to try to shut this kid, T.J. Guerrero’s, stand down.

Guerrero’s Dunedin, Florida, stand, though, is not just your typical after-school activity. It has become a rallying point for community members after Guerrero’s 61-year-old neighbor tried to have the stand shut down.

It has become a rallying point for community members after Guerrero’s 61-year-old neighbor tried to have the stand shut down.

“When will this illegal nonsense ... stop?” Doug Wilkey wrote in reference to the lemonade stand in an email complaint to city officials on June 11 that was obtained by ABC News. “This is the value of the home that I have owned for 32 years getting ravaged! This is costing me thousands of dollars in home value & my taxes should be reduced accordingly!”

According to Guerrero’s mother’s partner, Wilkey never directly complained to Guerrero or his family.

However it is good that the community rallied around this kid:

Community members have rallied behind Guerrero, buying drinks in droves. Local radio station 102.5 heard the story and worked with Guerrero Monday at his stand, raising more than $1,000 for Guerrero. The mayor even stopped by.

“I think it is a great show of entrepreneurship. This 12-year-old is setting a great example,” Dunedin Mayor Dave Eggers told ABC Action News. “I don’t know what the other neighbor’s problem is, but I would like to talk to him to try to figure it out.”

Guerrero has no plans to stop selling treats to locals.

“I know my one neighbor does not support this,” he said. “But it makes me want to work even harder. I just can't believe all these people care. It makes me feel so wonderful.”

I guess running afoul of your asshole neighbors is good for business.

Too Bad Keystone Opponents; Enbridge Just Fround a Pipeline End-Around

Never underestimate the power of capitalists trying to find a place for their product to go.

Instead of waiting, the company said it plans to build a link to an adjacent pipeline, known as Line 3, which already crosses the border. Enbridge will move the oil from the Alberta Clipper to Line 3 about a mile and half north of the border, send it into the U.S., then transfer it back to the main line at another interconnect about 16 miles into the U.S.

Because the only new construction is the link in Canada, and Line 3 already has permission to bring oil into the country, no additional approvals are needed.

It isn’t a permanent solution. Enbridge wants to almost double the capacity of the Alberta Clipper to 880,000 barrels a day, but the move would provide a temporary increase in capacity for exporting Canadian crude, which has been constrained by a lack of pipelines.

I agree with this article in that these environmentalists need to reduce the demand for oil. That means push their liberal Senators and Congressmen to expand electric vehicle reimbursements. They also need to dole out greater tax breaks to car companies that make them. Let buying a Tesla be the same as buying a BMW or maybe even a bit better. Then have them expand charging stations and infrastructure. Plenty of union jobs there I assume

Friday, August 22, 2014

Wow Income Inequality between Whites and Blacks is Staggering

I have to agree that black people have seriously suffered in the last few years.

A typical black household has accumulated less than one-tenth of the wealth of a typical white one. And it's only getting worse. 

Over the past 25 years, the wealth gap between blacks and whites has nearly tripled, according to research by Brandeis University. 

The article sites that most black families do not own a home which is where much of white peoples wealth seems to come from. This statistic is horrible.

All of these factors combine to push many blacks into poverty. America's 15% poverty rate masks the underlying racial differences. More than one in four blacks live in poverty, while fewer than one in 10 whites do. 

You would figure that black leaders would be doing everything they could to fix these numbers. 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

5 Stocks that Might Benefit from the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Well it seems that ALS research is getting a big bump from people dumping ice water on their heads and giving money to fight the disease.

Besides the millions of viral videos now circulating the web, there is an entire force of big pharmaceutical companies and non-profit clinics and universities hunting for a cure. The record influx of funds supporting Lou Gehrig’s disease may help them hone in on one.

In August, the ALS Association began putting those donations to work, awarding scientists with 21 new research grants valued at $3.5 million, it said in a report.

The stocks are:

Biogen IDEC (BIIB)Their drug dexpramipexole failed in a late stage trial but they are going back to drawing board to see what they can salvage.

Avanir Pharmaceuticals Inc. (AVNR) Their drug Nuedexta is supposed to treat pseudobulbar affect which is uncontrollabe laughing and crying. It might be used to help with ALS because some of them have this affliction as well.

Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ISIS) They have a very early stage drug called ISIS-SOD1-Rx that is being studied right now to help with ALS. I'm long this stock.

Sanofi (SNY) They developed the only therapy for ALS which is a drug called Rilutek. It extends the life of an ALS patient but doesn't cure it.

Bristol-Meyers Squibb Co. (BMY) Their immune modulation therapies might be useful in treating ALS. This is from the ALS Forum:

BMS currently is developing a therapy aimed at microtubule stabilization. In addition, BMS has a large program aimed at immune modulation. Both microtubule stabilization and immune modulation could be potential opportunities for ALS therapeutics. [Updated: August 9, 2013]

BMS currently is developing a therapy aimed at microtubule stabilization. In addition, BMS has a large program aimed at immune modulation. Both microtubule stabilization and immune modulation could be potential opportunities for ALS therapeutics. [Updated: August 9, 2013] - See more at:

They Found the Missing Global Warming Heat: It's in the Atlantic Ocean

I was wondering where it went.

In 1999, the feverish rise in Earth's surface temperatures suddenly slowed, even as greenhouse gas emissions escalated. This unexpected slowdown has been called a global warming hiatus or global warming pause. Most climate scientists don't think this hiatus means global warming went kaput, but the reason (or reasons) for the slowdown has scientists flummoxed. Researchers have offered more than two dozen ideas to explain the missing heat.

Now, a study published today (Aug. 21) in the journal Science suggests a natural climate cycle in the North Atlantic Ocean gobbled Earth's extra heat. While the study is unlikely to settle the scientific debate, it does support the idea that Earth's global warming continues in the ocean, even when air temperatures stay flat.

Of course this cycle won't last forever and will stop in 2030 for some reason or another. They say it is a 30 year cycle though so in 2060 it should start back up again. So maybe all the climate doom-and-gloom models need to be adjusted for ocean heat trapping.

This is exactly why people bristle at Climate Change Science. Nothing is sure and it is constantly moving and changing like any other kind of science. The so-called "settled science" argument that will cause the UN to make sure the Chinese and Indians keep their people in poverty is such bunk.

Student Suspended for Saying "Bless You" to Someone Who Sneezed

This is just outrageous any way you look at it.

“She said that we’re not going to have godly speaking in her class," Turner said, "and that’s when I said we have a constitutional right. ... It’s all right to defend God and it’s our constitutional right, because we have a freedom of religion and freedom of speech."

Turner was sent to the administrator's office, where she finished the class period with an "in-school suspension," WMC said.

The 1st Amendment says that the Congress can make no law against the free exercise of religion. So saying bless you to someone that sneezed is free exercise of religion. It must take a lot of faith to be an atheist.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Millennials Insanely Risk Averse Study Finds

I guess the Great Recession can do that to a group of people just starting their fiscal lives.

Unfortunately, millennials have a basic misunderstanding of risk. BlackRock's "Global Investor Pulse" survey found that almost half of its 4,000 participants were opposed to taking any risk with their money, keeping it in cash or bonds. The participants included investors of all ages, "with those born in the late 1970s and after leading the way." 

The problem is all-cash will get eroded away by inflation. Just some low-fee index funds or even some dividend rich income funds are better than cash. I blame this on lack of financial literacy for millennials.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Checked-Out President: Tells Harry Reid to "Work it Out:

I guess Harry Reid knows that Obama is so-over this President thing.

With Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, sitting a few feet away, Mr. Reid complained that Senate Republicans were spitefully blocking the confirmation of dozens of Mr. Obama’s nominees to serve as ambassadors. He expected that the president would back him up and urge Mr. McConnell to relent.
Mr. Obama quickly dismissed the matter.

“You and Mitch work it out,” Mr. Obama said coolly, cutting off any discussion.

Mr. Reid seethed quietly for the rest of the meeting, according to four separate accounts provided by people who spoke with him about it. After his return to the Capitol that afternoon, Mr. Reid told other senators and his staff members that he was astonished by how disengaged the president seemed. After all, these were Mr. Obama’s own ambassadors who were being blocked by Mr. McConnell, and Secretary of State John Kerry had been arguing for months that getting them installed was an urgent necessity for the administration.

Yeah, these are Obama's own nominees that are supposed to be urgently needed. Instead he is like "Dingy Harry work it out." Politics are sooo beneath him. Maybe if Harry Reid was a noted artist, Jay-Z, or a Nobel prize winning economist Obama would have gave him the time of day. Instead he is merely a grubby Majority Leader of the Senate. I think Obama needs to resign and become Democratic Party Chairman and let Biden finish off his term.

A Hillary Speech Does Not Come Cheap; She is a Political Rock Star baby!

Talk about a money making opportunity!

The paper reported Saturday on specifics of the contract for Clinton's speech at a University of Nevada, Las Vegas Foundation fundraiser in October. Clinton will receive $225,000 for speaking at the dinner. In exchange, she will attend for 90 minutes and pose for a maximum of 50 photographs with no more than 100 people. That's a discount: Her regular fee is $300,000, Myers reported.

I guess she can barely afford "houses" with that kind of money. Oh and she is a rock star alright with some rock star demands as well:

Co-host Ron Claiborne read off some of Clinton's specifications for her events -- which include travel on a private jet, a presidential suite to stay in, and the presence of a stenographer -- prompting Harris to ask, "Did she specify which color M&M's she would like?"

Monday, August 18, 2014

Two Important Numbers to Investors

This is an interesting way of looking at the American economy and the Stock Market.

American corporations earned $4.62 billion of net income on Monday. Financial advisors, analysts, and brokers, collected $630 million in fees. No media outlet reported these figures, despite being the two most important numbers necessary to understanding investing.

Also here is why economic numbers are viewed so differently:

A report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed the economy added 209,000 jobs last month. An economist from a right-leaning think tank called the report disappointing. Another at a left-leaning organization called it encouraging. Neither has a reputable track record. Both yelled. The jobs report has a margin of error of plus or minus 100,000, and will be revised seven times in the coming years. No one whose outlook was swayed by the report said they care about these details.

I swear economist is the only job where you can be wrong 90% of the time and still get paid by right/left leaning think-tanks. At least a weatherman is correct some of the time. Just not when you want to go to the beach.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Is Hillary Blowing Her Presidential Chances Again? She still has 2 years to go!

Hillary just can't win.

There's a nightmare scenario for Clinton supporters lurking under the surface of these critiques of her campaign skills: the idea that 2016 would be a repeat of 2008. Right now, as a powerful front-runner, Clinton is in a similar position to the one she enjoyed heading into that race. Her slew of stumbles have raised the possibility she could end the race in the same position as 2008 — bested by an opponent who was more electrifying and better able to connect with the public on the campaign trail.

It seems that she is in the same boat as she was when Obama knocked her off in the last election. Maybe Elizabeth Warren or even Joe Biden might want to start up the political machine. Hillary looks vulnerable again.

Wait, Matt Lauer is Not the Dad? Could Have Fooled Me

I heard that Savannah Guthrie just had a kid. However, this photo makes me think that Matt Lauer is the dad and not some other guy.

In fact this comment about the real father is supposed to be funny but is immasculating at the same time.

How is the TV journalist's husband, Mike Feldman, adjusting to life as a first-time father? "You know how fussy he gets!" Savannah said with a laugh. "I've gotta put him down for his nap or he's so cranky."

Haha, the father of your child is like a child himself. Funny stuff. Maybe we need Montel Williams to sort all this out.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Apple's China Opportunity: Massive is an Understatement

It seems that there is huge opportunity to bring iPhones to the Chinese.

The biggest opportunity for Apple in China is likely to come from its new partnership to sell iPhones at the world's largest carrier, China Mobile. The carrier just recently started rolling out its 4G LTE in the country, and the early results of the customer acquisition trajectory is startling.

So far there is 8 million 4G LTE customers in China. However, there are 779 million non 4G LTE customers for them to go after. Even if they get a fraction of that number it will seriously move the needle.

Robin Williams Daughter Chased off of Social Media

Now this is a sad commentary on how people are treated by Anon-assholes online.

While the 25-year-old actress's social media accounts were flooded with mostly well wishes, a few anonymous users criticized the fact she didn't post enough pictures of her father; several sent graphic photoshopped images along with crude and hateful remarks.

"I will be leaving this account for a [sic] but while I heal and decide if I'll be deleting it or not. In this difficult time, please try to be respectful of the accounts of myself, my family and my friends," she shared on Instagram alongside a photo of a butterfly. "Mining our accounts for photos of dad, or judging me on the number of them is cruel and unnecessary. There are a couple throughout, but the real private moments I shared with him were precious, quiet, and believe it or not, not full of photos or 'selfies'.

So they attacked her for not having enough pictures of her dad on social media? I'm glad I deleted my Facebook because people out in social media land are nuts.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

6-Sigma Event In Junk Bonds?

It seems that people are pulling their money out of junk bonds to the tune of $7.1 billion.

"HY flowmageddon," said Goldman Sachs' Charles Himmelberg in a research note we saw via @lebullmarche. "This is the largest HY outflow on record – a 6-sigma event when flows are scaled by mutual fund assets under management!"

Sigma is another way of saying standard deviation. And the greater the number of standard deviations, the more unlikely the event.

A 6-sigma event is extremely rare. If you want to put a number to it, think 1 in 500 million. According to Business Insider quant reporter Andy Kiersz, it's like flipping a coin 29 times in a row and getting heads each time. It's like rolling a die 11 times in a row and getting 6 each time.

Some people are saying that it is a good entry point because the companies that are issuing the debt are still in pretty good shape. The economy is growing fairly well so you don't have to worry about the risk of a downturn.

Monday, August 11, 2014

200 Day Moving Average Test Might Be a Good Entry Point

Hopefully, the last correction might have opened up another buying opportunity.

Craig Johnson, senior technical analyst at Piper Jaffray, is also bullish on the Dow. Tests of the index’s 200-day moving average have “proven to be great buying opportunities” over the past few years, he said. That’s because an uptrend he sees as beginning in 2011 is still intact.

“This to me looks and feels like just a normal pullback, correction right back to the 200-day, and a great buying opportunity,” Johnson said. “At this pullback here, we’re starting to look a little bit oversold.”

Teen Choice Awards Rigged?

I guess the rules are such that they can pretty much pick anyone and ignore the "so-called" fan vote.

Winners for the Teen Choice Awards are determined using the votes cast on Votes are tabulated electronically and winners are determined based on the nominees in each category with the highest number of eligible votes.  Teenasaurus Rox reserves the right to choose the winner from the top four vote getters. The Olay Fresh Effects Breakout Star Award and Ultimate Choice Award were both chosen by Teenasaurus Rox.

 I wonder what would have been wrong with just tabulating the winners like a week before and then giving them to Accounting firm. Then they invite the people that won and if they cannot make it have their industry friend (or their biggest fan) accept the award in their behalf. Instead they say that it is fan votes that pick the winner when it is actually done by the management.

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Montana Might have Lost Its Senate Candidate?

I guess this is why you don't copy your Masters Thesis in college.

But then in July, The New York Times reported that Walsh, while a master's candidate at the United States Army War College "appropriated at least a quarter of his thesis on American Middle East policy from other authors’ works, with no attribution." 

Walsh's campaign has been in a spiral ever since. His camp initially attributed the plagiarism to his struggle with PTSD, but he has thus far been unable to contain the damage. 

On Tuesday, two Montana newspapers called on Walsh to quit the race. 

He hasn't been heard from since. 

The New York Times took down a Democrat? I'm sure the liberal establishment are going crazy over that fact.

Tea Party Group Stealing With Both Hands: Now the Tea Party is Like Everyone Else in Washington

It all started so well. Now it has become a mess.

This week, ProPublica released a report on the financial (and moral) corruption of a Tea Party group operating under the name Move America Forward, which was founded by one Sal Russo. Russo also helped start the Our Country Deserves Better PAC, aka the Tea Party Express. Move America Forward has run fake drives to give care packages to troops, stolen images of other charitable campaigns and passed them off as its own, and trumpeted a nonexistent partnership with Walter Reed Hospital — all while funneling very real millions to itself. The group is an industry leader at taking your Tea Party sentiments (if you have them) and turning them into profits.

They are turning your anger of government bloat and spending into fat stacks of cash that they are putting into their pockets. I hope they bury this Sal Russo character underneath the jail.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

People Suck at Figuring Out Risk: They Fear the Rare and Ignore the Common

These numbers kind of blew me away.

How many miles would you have to drive by car until the risk of dying is the same as in a nonstop flight? I have asked this to dozens of expert audiences. The answers are all over the place: one thousand miles, ten thousand miles, driving three times around the world. However, the best estimate is twelve miles. Yes, only twelve. If your car makes it safely to the airport, the most dangerous part of your trip is likely already behind you.

Yeah 12 miles. This article also points out that more people die in car crashes in 5 hours than have died all this year in airplane crashes. This part is stunning as well:

Ebola has also been in the news this week, scaring people around the world. Ebola has killed 1,590 people since it was identified in the 1970s, according to the World Health Organization. Measles -- which faces a vaccination backlash -- kills about as many people every 96 hours.

Yet there is all sorts of fear factor when it comes to the Ebola outbreak. There is no talk of the measles outbreak and how deaths will go up considerably if people stop vaccinating their children. But there is no cure for ebola and there is a cure for measles so of course people are scared to death of it.

A case in point can be drawn from Hawaii and 2 hurricanes bearing down on us. I heard on the news there is like a 5% chance of there being winds over 50 miles per hour. So what do people do? They rush to Costco and stock up on tons of bottled water and noodles. At Sam's Club there were lines that went the length of the store to pay for something that will probably not be needed. Also I wonder if these people bought piles of bottled water when we had a Tsunami about a year ago? I mean water doesn't go bad. I guess this is where you get the term sheeple from.

There might be Sapphire on the iPhone 6 after all

This debate goes back and forth but an analyst did some math and inventory buildup might be evidence that the iPhone 6 will have a Sapphire display.

As the chart shows, GT has been building up a significant backlog of deferred revenue in recent quarters. While a portion of that is from its other products, the company reports that amount and it represents about $65 million in equipment as of the end of last quarter. When that’s subtracted out of the total, it leaves $154 million that Margolis says can pretty much only be sapphire. He believes Apple is paying $8-10 per screen for the material from GT (the finished goods price will be higher after it’s processed by Apple’s contract manufacturers) so that alone represents 15-19 million screens worth of sapphire.

“What this means is GT is already sitting on enough sapphire to satisfy Apple’s needs for the iPhone 6 launch in September,” Margolis said. “This deal was in the making for 2 years. They’ve been preparing this for quite some time.”

15-19 million screens seems to be a decent amount for the first run of iPhone 6s. They will probably fly off the shelves and GT Advanced will have to seriously churn out the Sapphire going forward. This article says that number needs to be 10 million screens a month in order to keep ahead of demand.

Microsoft Lost $1.73 Billion on the Surface

Ballmer's legacy of failure continues.

Keizer did his own back-of-the-envelope calculation to estimate that Microsoft has lost $1.73 billion since the Surface’s debut in 2012. The total loss for FY2014 was $680 million, and it was $1.049 million for the year before, according to Keizer.

His calculations also revealed that in the June 2014 quarter alone, the Surface had lost $363 million, the largest quarterly loss for the Surface since Microsoft started releasing quarterly revenue figures.

He said some of the losses was due to massive write-offs from the Surface Mini, which never hit the market despite being ready for production, out of fear it would not sell well. 

I think the newest version of the Surface is pretty decent for the most part. However, I would still rather own a Nexus or an iPad.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Looks like iPhone 6 Release Date is Sept 8th

Lots of rumors and innuendo but this might be the date we see the new iPhone6.

September 9 is the date pegged by re/code today and it should be taken seriously. Re/code was founded by Wall Street Journal industry pillars Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher and after years of hosting talks with the biggest names in tech (they once got Bill Gates and Steve Jobs on the sofa together) the duo are among the best connected journalists in the industry.

I wonder if anyone will be lining up for that date or not?

Strange Sign that there is Lots of Excess Money Sloshing Around in the Economy

I was reading an article on the best performing alternative investments and I came across this line.

The same forces propelling markets are also raising prices for companies private-equity firms want to buy. Dry powder -- buyout money that has yet to be deployed -- stood at a record $1.16 trillion as of June 30, according to Preqin. 

“Prices are very high,” Black said at the Milken Conference. “It’s still not a robust environment for private equity. We are continuing to sell more than we are buying.” 

The combination of too much dry powder and a great deal of demand has created a dilemma for executives such as Blackstone President Tony James, whose firm manages a total of $279 billion in alternative investments. He says Blackstone has been turning away money because the New York-based firm can’t find prudent ways to spend it. 

So there is $1.16 trillion sitting on the sidelines because prices are too high? On one hand that is quite bit of money left to pop things higher. I mean that is a real first world problem to have so much money to be deployed you are turning away new investors. On the other hand if prices are so high that no one will deploy that money then maybe things are just over valued. Hopefully, we can get a nice 10% or more correction and this dry-powder will power us to new highs. 

Monday, August 04, 2014

Windows 9 for Free? Sign me up!

It seems that Microsoft is mulling offering a free upgrade for Windows XP, Vista, and 7 owners.

The company is reportedly considering offering some sort of Windows 9 upgrade deal to XP, Vista and Windows 7 users, with a completely free upgrade option also on the table. This isn’t the first time free Windows 9 upgrade rumors have hit the web, but previous reports suggested that Windows Threshold (Windows 9’s internal codename) might launch as a free download to Windows 8.1 Update, and Windows 7 Service Pack 1 owners.

I think this is a great idea because most people with XP need to buy a new machine anyway because it couldn't run Windows 9. Also most people holding onto Windows 7 and dodging Windows 8 will upgrade for sure if it is offered as a free download. With Ballmer gone Microsoft is like a different company.

Friday, August 01, 2014

Israeli Left Turn on Obama: I guess Barack Has No Friends Left From the River Jordan to the Sea

I guess all of Israel now understands that Obama is no friend of theirs after all this time.

Consequently, the harshest criticisms of the administration’s pro-Hamas position were heard from quarters where rarely a peep of criticism for Obama has been heard.
The Israeli Left went ballistic.

Haaretz, the far-left broadsheet that has seldom taken issue with even the harshest rejections of Israel’s rights, went bananas after its reporter Barak Ravid received the details of Kerry’s cease-fire agreement. As Ravid put it, Kerry’s document, “might as well have been penned by Khaled Mashaal. It was everything Hamas could have hoped for.”

Ravid continued, “What Kerry’s draft spells for the internal Palestinian political arena is even direr: It crowns Hamas and issues Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas with a death warrant.”

The Israeli Right understands that Obama really hates them and can barely hold his anger when he talks with Netanyahu. Now the Left understands that they might need to wait for 2016 before they get an occupant of the White House that will back them up with actions and not just words.

Obamacare More Unliked Than Ever before

It seems that Obamacare has sunk to a new low in peoples' eyes.

Kaiser Family Foundation, which has done arguably the best and most consistent polling on the health-care law in the past four-plus years, found that public opinion on the law sank to a record low in July. More people than ever (53 percent) last month said they viewed the law unfavorably, an increase of 8 percentage points since June — one of the biggest opinion swings ever.

The Kaiser Family Foundation has no idea why it dropped so much from one month to the next. Maybe people are just tired of listening to stories about it?