A River Runs Through It

By |2017-07-17T12:23:07+00:00January 15th, 2015|Global Market Update|

How important is water? Lake Mead before and after the drought. Source: Slate Water is essential for life. When I go camping, one of the most critical factors that goes into selecting a campsite is how far it is from a reliable source of water. When regions experience a drought, their economies suffer. Agriculture, recreation, and power-generation are all affected. […]

Carry On, Mister Trader

By |2017-07-17T12:23:07+00:00January 14th, 2015|Global Market Update|

Why are bond yields so low? Source: Daily Telegraph One of the most surprising market moves of 2014 was the persistent rally in US Treasury Bonds. It wasn’t supposed to be this way. Starting in April of 2013, rates were supposed to normalize. That’s when Ben Bernanke signaled that the Fed would gradually end its bond-buying program known as Quantitative Easing. […]

The Indispensable Country

By |2017-07-17T12:23:07+00:00January 13th, 2015|Global Market Update|

“The graveyards are filled with indispensable men.” – Charles De Gaulle Source: Le Monde Among the ironies of Sunday’s march in Paris were leaders from Saudi Arabia and Russia demonstrating on behalf of free speech, while US leaders avoided the procession. But irony aside, the direction France now takes matters immensely to the rest of the world. Initial reports indicate that over 5% of France’s population attended Sunday’s rally. […]

Rookie of the Year?

By |2017-07-17T12:23:07+00:00January 12th, 2015|Global Market Update|

Is it good to be a rookie? Source: KKLZ993 There are a lot of advantages to being new on the job: you see things differently; you’re more likely to network; you look for answers off the beaten track. We’ve all heard about hungry rookies whose determination helped them conquer a steep learning curve. Sometimes all it takes is a naïve question to turn things around. […]

Think Different

By |2017-07-17T12:23:07+00:00January 9th, 2015|Global Market Update|

Is it different this time? Source: The Missing Bite Sir John Templeton once said that the four most dangerous words in investing are, “This time it’s different.” There’s a lot of truth in this. When people assert that things have changed, often they are just trying to rationalize an extreme position. So during the dot-com or housing bubbles some folks said, “It’s different this time” to justify sky-high valuations. Employees at Enron who participated in that company’s 401(k) plan had invested almost 60% of [...]

We’re All Charlie, Now

By |2017-07-17T12:23:07+00:00January 8th, 2015|Global Market Update|

Source: The Conversation Yesterday a small group of terrorists attacked the editorial offices of a French satire weekly, killing 12 before they raced away, shouting “Allahu Akbar!” The magazine, Charlie Hebdo, was an equal-opportunity satirist: they ridiculed everyone. This attack by Islamo-fascists has sickened and appalled millions around the world. […]

The Excluded Middle

By |2017-07-17T12:23:07+00:00January 7th, 2015|Global Market Update|

What’s happening to the middle? Source: Middle Way Society In all sorts of situations, the middle is struggling. Take retail: high-end (Tiffany) and low-end (Wal-Mart) sellers are doing fine, but the middle (Sears, JC Penny) is troubled. In electronics, Apple at the top and Huawei at the bottom are okay, but the middle—Samsung—is having difficulty. Among manufacturing economies, high-cost and low-cost—the US and China—are growing, but the middle—Europe—is facing challenges. Why is this? […]

Giving Up on the News?

By |2017-07-17T12:23:08+00:00January 5th, 2015|Global Market Update|

Is news bad for us? Source: Elephant Journal That’s what some people think. They claim that news for the mind is like sugar for the body. We need a little to survive, but a steady diet of tidbits makes us overweight and unable to appreciate substantial fare. Short news-bites mislead, waste time, make us passive, and kill creativity, according to these folks. Online news, especially, caters to our appetite for flashy, sensational stories. […]

Breaking Up is Hard to Do

By |2017-07-17T12:23:08+00:00January 2nd, 2015|Global Market Update|

Is Microsoft still a monopoly? Source: Redorbit 15 years ago the Federal Government brought an antitrust suit against Microsoft, alleging monopolistic and predatory behavior. The company had been giving away Internet Explorer with its Windows 95 operating system, thus assuring itself victory in the browser war that it was fighting with Netscape. Most users were surprised. Why should the government attack a company for giving away its product? […]