Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving Randomosity

  • Happy Thanksgiving!
  • The stock market is giving us a lot of reasons to be giving thanks.  This has been an amazing year to be long domestic equities.  While I am still in cash, I am happy that the economy seems to be chugging along despite much of the naysayers.  I hope the uptrend continues.
  • It is hard to imagine a scenario where the stock market begins a correction in December.  The market has been moving up.  There aren’t that many losers to sell for tax reasons.  And fund managers will want to make sure the big winning stocks show up on that year-end report.  Just thinking out loud. 
  • Thanksgiving is almost over as I type, and the malls here in Sac are already packed.  Many of the stores are opening on Thursday these days.  Crazy.
  • Football games were okay today.  Especially the night game.
  • Jason Kidd intentionally spilling a drink on the floor …  $50,000 fine.
  • So, do I have to put up Christmas lights tomorrow?

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Tuesday 4000 Randomosity

  • The Nasdaq first crossed 4000 was 1999. Back then, @MariaBartiromo was still at CNBC.
  • So that was quite a dump in the last few minutes today.  There is this saying that the market rallies during Thanksgiving week and usually the Friday after Thanksgiving.  I wonder how much of that is pre-baked into the cake these days to make it worthless!
  • Pope Francis attacks global capitalism.  “Just as the commandment ‘Thou shalt not kill’ sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say ‘thou shalt not’ to an economy of exclusion and inequality.” I think capitalism creates wealth and allows folks to be charitable – as Americans are.  We could all do better, but the heavy hand of government is not the answer.
  • Paraphrasing somebody, “Capitalism is the worse economic system in the world, except for all the other systems that have been tried out.”
  • So is the market still in the secular bear market that started in 2000?  Or is this a new secular bull market?  I lean to the former, but it sure feels good right now.
  • Is Miley Cyrus really going to be the number one phenom of 2013?  Lets give that honor to those guys from Holland who created the “What does the fox say?” YouTube video, that inspired parody after parody after parody.
  • Still loving the Microsoft Surface Pro 2.
  • When is Kobe Bryant suiting up?  The dude is practicing, right?
  • Paraphrasing somebody, “Practice?  We talking about practice?” 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Monday Night Randomosity

  • image The market looked fairly flat, but look at F and TWTR (Facebook and Twitter).  Yuck. 
  • The Redskins are playing some pretty bad football. So are the Texans.
  • I’m still in cash.  I keep thinking that the higher the market goes without a correction, the worse the actual correction will be.  When it comes.
  • By the way, the Nasdaq did edge above 4000 today.  The link is to a column from Mark Hulbert (so you know it must be true) about when the market first traded above 4000.  Back in 1999.
  • You remember 1999: Back then Maria Bartiromo was on CNBC!
  • So, a deal with Iran, eh? Color me a contrarian on that one, too.  I’d rather stay closer to Israel than Iran.  I don’t trust Iran further than I could throw ‘em.
  • The best of Black Friday freebies!  I love shopping online, by the way.  I bought tons of stuff last Black Friday.
  • Kim Kardashian.  Er, so, she is always in the news for something.  Can’t avoid it.  But why do we care so much?
  • Dancing with the Stars finale?  Where has the time gone?

Thursday, November 21, 2013

And the Beat Goes on

  • image The market shrugged off the last few ugly days to make a new move up.  It was a nice day to be long.  It is as if the market just can’t go down for very long anymore.
  • I’m still in cash.  LOL.  It hurts so good.  I’d rather miss a move than be leaning the wrong direction.  But I still have a feeling that what comes next won’t be fun.  But from what levels and how much higher will the market go?  It could ramp up as tired bears give up.
  • Health pricing causes sticker shock.  Ya think?  “Sweeping differences in health care exchange pricing among states and counties is leading to sticker shock for some middle class consumers…”  The unfortunate thing is that the sticker shock is hitting the middle class.  But it is probably a fantastic deal for the poor.  The rich don’t care.
  • Contrarian alert! In California, state analyst projects years of budget surpluses. “…California is poised for years of multibillion dollar surpluses.”  So, be afraid.  Be very afraid.
  • Nike is expanding their dividend by 14%.  I don’t own any shares.  Or sneakers – they hurt my feet. 
  • Maybe it’s the upcoming holiday or the cooler (and wetter) weather, but I feel like hunkering down and watching movies.  You?
  • I know I said I was going to blog more and get back to audioboos and podcasts, but… Well, I’m blogging.  So…
  • I’m tired of fantasy football, but I keep playing year after year.  Drew Brees didn’t do much after the first half.  C’mon.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Stock Market Thoughts

Regarding the bull market, we are either near the beginning, near the end, or somewhere in the middle. We’re obviously not near the beginning as that was in March 2009.  So we’re either somewhere in the middle or near the end.

It sounds kind of obvious, right?

But think of the bull market as approaching five years old.  We’re seeing a long period of near 0% interest rates, in an economy that supposedly can’t fail with the Fed QE program.  We’re seeing lots of IPOs and high valuations on social media companies that lose money.  We’re also now seeing money flowing into stock mutual funds.

Granted, we are nearing the end of  2013 and it is likely that the market rallies into the end of the year.  I would imagine pullbacks are still buyable, if they show up.

Economic data is okay, but not great.  This week should see some more mediocre economic news…

Just thinking out loud as I watch the Broncos up over the Chiefs.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Obama and Yellen Randomosity

  • image Today we had the two most powerful people in the world speak:  Janet Yellen and Barack Obama.  In that order.  Neither pictured, by the way.  Oh, I realize Bernanke is still officially the most powerful person.  But isn’t he a lame duck Fed chairman?
  • Yellen basically said, and I’m paraphrasing, that she was going to make it rain money because unemployment is too high and growth isn’t as high as we’d like to see it.  All the time, of course, the Fed was keeping an eye out for problems.
  • (And once the problems occur, add in a year or so later, the Fed will actually realize what the problems were).
  • The stock market seemed to like this.  After all, all that money has to go somewhere and it may as well buy shares of TWTR.  Which was up today, by the way.
  • Emerging markets really liked this.  After all, if the Fed is inflating the dollar’s value away, this is good for foreign denominated assets, right?
  • Meanwhile, President Obama spoke about how unaffordable the Affordable Care Act, er Obamacare, was and that if you want your old insurance plan back, you can have your old insurance plan back.  For a year.  Assuming the insurance company will follow Obama’s directive.  And then have to reissue cancellation notices next year.  Postmarked after the 2014 election, right?
  • I remain in cash.  On the sidelines.  Watching and waiting.  Sitting on my hands.  Watching the grass grow.  Not that kind of grass.
  • So that’s what TV was like today.
  • I thought Yellen answered the questions well, without actually answering the questions.  That’s the third mandate of the Fed. 
  • I thought Obama looked beaten up a little.  I’m not sure if he solved anything today.  I think he just made it more complicated.  But, that’s the nature of government programs.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Another Great Market Day

  • When the Nasdaq leads the way up and the overall market makes a new high, it’s a good day. Stocks had the chance to fall lower, but a late day rally turned things around and shows that there is still a bull bias.
  • Heck, it’s hard to imagine the stock market heading down by year’s end. My gut feeling is that the market is higher by year end than it is now.   What a bold call!  (LOL).  With that said, I’m still in cash.
  • Obamacare enrollment worse than initial estimate.  Shocker.  Well, I think a  lot of of folks procrastinate. In addition, there has been a lot of negative stories about the website.  But you know what they say about government estimates…
  • Janet Yellen to defend Fed’s QE program.  Ya think?  Another shocker!  She “defended the central bank’s unconventional asset purchase program, calling it the best way to get the economy back to normal.”  Heck, I guess it’s been the “best way” since 2009!  One of these days, maybe it will even work!
  • The Philippines. –> The Red Cross.  Just saying.
  • Well, what do THEY say about government estimates?  I think the reality is that they’re just not very accurate.  They seem to paint whatever picture they need to paint in order to sell whatever the estimate is related to.
  • Seriously – I think the main thing QE has done is inflate asset prices.  Like the stock market.  For example  Just saying.  IMHO.  Just my 2-cents.
  • I always think it’s too early to start playing Christmas music.  I was just wearing shorts, for goodness sakes.  It’s still over 70 degrees here!  (Barely).
  • After 320 games, the Lakers sellout streak ends.  What?  Steve Blake isn’t packing in the crowds?
  • Maybe Yellen was the reason for the market turnaround today.  Mo’money.
  • Sacramento Kings are leading the Brooklyn Nets by 12 at the half.
  • I do like the Surface Pro 2.  I know I’ve said that before, but I’m saying it again.  I do wish I could resize the apps in the desktop view, though.  Pinch-zoom don’t work here!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Tuesday Stock Market Randomosity

  • Bull markets don’t last forever. This one started in March, 2009. 
  • Even with investor sentiment high and stock mutual funds seeing inflows, it seems as if folks are still smarting from the bear markets of the last decade.  Two in the stock market and one in the real estate market.  Who can blame them?
  • In addition, the Fed keeps printing money and incoming Fed Chair Janet Yellen will probably continue the policy if not increase it.  Don’t fight the FED?!??!??!?
  • Anyway, I’ve heard and read a lot of reasons to be bullish and a lot of reasons to expect a correction or worse.  I’m thinking correction and hoping not worse.  But that correction has yet to materialize as each dip is bought.
  • I think I’m repeating myself a lot these days – months – when I give my reasons to be a little concerned.  So instead of rehashing it blog post after blog post, I am just going to mention that I am still in cash, and if anything changes I will blog about it.  I think that is what has held back the blogging and podcasting or audioboos lately.  Lather rinse and repeat!
  • So back to randomosity and other such things.  Along with market comments!
  • I picked the Tampa Bay Bucs in my weekly football pool, and thought I was some sort of Wile E. Coyote Evil Genius.  But I also had Indianapolis winning at home against the Rams.  What an idiot!  And the 49ers at home over the Panthers!  MORON!
  • Duke up by one over Kansas as I type.  March Madness is coming. LOL.
  • No, not buying shares of TWTR.  The Twitter.  Maybe down the road.  But that business model doesn’t make sense to me just yet.  And I’d like to see some of the insiders unload their shares before I wade in.
  • Obamacare fiasco continues.  You just have to think something’s gotta give, right?  The cancellation notices and more expensive policies are hitting the middle class. 
  • Still loving the Surface Pro 2.  I’ve seen a few of them out and about in my trips to SBUX – Starbucks.  I’ve also seen a lot of iPad minis, but not much else other than smart phones.

Friday, November 08, 2013

Friday Night Randomosity!

  • Yesterday is history! The stock market resumed going up today on … er, reason du jour? Jobs report?  It was a little mixed, right? I mean maybe the news is such that it confirms the suspicion that the Fed will continue QE indefinitely.  Forever and ever, Amen.  Bank stocks were strong, which is a good sign.
  • Yeah, I’m still in cash.  The Dow is at record highs and the SP500 is darn close.  The pickup in blogging activity is not a sign that I’m getting excited about stocks here.  Nor am I here to talk them down and pretend I’m smarter than the market.  It is what it is.  I will probably dollar cost average back in absent a correction (that never seems to come).  Waiting for a correction is like waiting for the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.
  • Listening to MetroRadio app (that’s a third party Pandora app) on the Surface Pro 2.  There.  I said it.  Hey it’s either that or porn I guess.  Or Bill O’Reilly, which is Conservative porn.
  • Twitter, TWTR, fell over 7% on its second day of trading.  Now at $41.64.  Nobody making any money in it, yet.  I’ve stayed away.  I think both TWTR and F, Facebook, intrigue as long term buy and holds at some price point lower than here.  Perhaps after the Great Correction that never seems to come.  But when you think about it, some of these IPO stocks of this bull market will be the stocks we wish we would have owned 10 years from now.  Right?
  • Tesla, TSLA, down about 22% the last 3 trading days.  Yikes.  It happens fast, huh?
  • Friday night and it’s Going Out Night.  Casino? 
  • Hey, I will resume Audioboos aka podcasts soon.  My broken feet are much improved over a few months ago, but still in the healing process. 
  • President Obama’s job approval down to 41%.  53% disapprove, while the remaining 6% don’t have a clue!  Obama really gets slammed on the handling of the economy, where 31% approve of the way he is handling the economy.
  • How come Geraldo didn’t go to the Philippines to broadcast LIVE the Super Typhoon Haiyan?
  • Love the NFL.  Haven’t been able to watch much NBA just yet. My Lakers look sad, but at least they beat Dwight Howard and his Houston Rockets last night.  I didn’t watch, but have enjoyed reading the news articles today and on the TWTR!

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Nasdaq Down 2%; TWTR up 70%

image Today’s headline: Nasdaq down 2%; $TWTR up 70%. Quite the open for Twitter, where the price was driven up even before the stock was open for trade.  Jim Cramer and those on CNBC warned of excessive valuation and “what happens next,” and yes the IPO did close lower from where it opened.


I didn’t buy any or watch it much after it started trading.  Meanwhile, the market was pounded into the ground like nothing we’ve seen since the Miami Dolphins bullying scandal. 

More later!

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Dow Rally Randomosity

  • When the Dow is up (big), and the Nasdaq is weak… hmm.  Basically, it generally means that the Big Boys are avoiding risk and going into the highly liquid stocks.  Companies that sell toothpaste, soap, soda, and toilet paper.
  • Twitter priced at $26.  How much will it go up initially?  How much will it fall after the initial high?  Hmmm.
  • Blockbuster shut down it’s last 300 stores.  Remember the old days of actually going to a video store to rent a video?  Caveman days!
  • Whole Foods reported okay earnings but guided lower.  Oops.  Stock went down after hours.
  • Disney tomorrow.  These days that company is so much more than theme parks.  They have movies, TV, sports…
  • Anyway, still in cash and I’m thinking that the market is looking a little suspect here.  We.  Shall.  See.  Risk on or risk off?

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Tuesday Night Randomosity

  • Just what the heck happened with the Emerging Markets - $EEM today?  I guess we could blame the rising dollar.  There are fears (again) that the Fed (gee, amazing) may respond to the better-than-expected economic data by “tapering” the QE.  Yes, we’ve been hearing and worrying about off and on for… years?
  • Anyway, $EEM sold off today and looks like the Asian markets are getting hit on Their Wednesday as I type.
  • So, Aaron Rodgers has a fractured collar bone.  OUCH.  That can’t be comfortable.  The good news is that it’s not on his throwing arm side.   But still.  Ouch.
  • I’m still in cash.  Cash!!!  The stock market really didn’t do much today.
  • Toronto Mayor, Rob Ford, admitted that he smoked crack.  But, well, it was during one of his drunken stupors.   Yeah, I guess that makes it okay.  Who’s more trustworthy than a mayor who goes into drunken stupors and smokes crack?  It’s not like he lied about you being able to keep your health plan, if you like your health plan.
  • So, uh, $TSLA – Tesla dropped 12% after hours on their numbers.  They say because deliveries fell short.
  • Dwight Howard was jeered at a Los Angeles CLIPPERS game.  I am not sure what that means.  Exactly.

A Contrarian Play … Twitter?

I don’t want to jinx it, but is the $TWTR – Twitter IPO a contrarian play?


Hmm.  I’m not planning on buying any on Thursday, the projected IPO date.  But do columns like these and the fears of a $FB – Facebook repeat – and me being worried – signal that maybe we should buy as much TWTR as possible?


Monday, November 04, 2013

Monday Night Football Randomosity

  • image The market was … up!  Why not?  After all, it is the beginning of the month strength period.  Still.  It’s not like we’re done with the Halloween candy, yet.  Right?
  • Hey you want to know how to time the market?  Here it is“Yes, most people who try to tuime the market end up screwing it up – they buy and sell at the wrong times…”  So, the answer is, buy and sell at the right times.  Got it?  You’re welcome!
  • So, when steel stocks move up, does that mean we’re near the end of the bull market run?  Well, does it?
  • Monday Night Football with your Packers QB Wallace taking on your Bears QB McCown.  It’s why we’re watching, right?  But not a bad game.  I’d think this game would be a route were everyone healthy.  Packers at home have been hard to beat.
  • SNL parody of “What does the fox say?” is worth a view.
  • Warren Buffett says he won’t by Twitter.  Er, TWTR.  Maybe that’s a reason to buy.  That way you’re in BEFORE Buffett.  Right?  Just thinking out loud.  It’s not like I have a market order to buy in, either.
  • So, one thing I really like about the Microsoft Surface Pro 2 is the ability to split the screen.  It’s like really multitasking at the same time, right in front of your eyes!  I find myself using this a whole lot, with a twitter or email feed in a window, and work in the other.  Or a browser or my blog in the other.  You get the idea.
  • Yes!  I’m still in cash!  What?  Now that we’re in the favorable season?
  • Back to the game.  It’s the fourth quarter and the Bears are going in for the kill.  Amazing.

Sunday, November 03, 2013

On Any Given Sunday Randomosity

  • image Stock market looks like it is going to take a breather, but that’s not the first time I’ve thought that this year, right? I’m still in cash…
  • Puerto Rican debt a threat to global banks?  Really?  Puerto Rico?
  • So, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are winless, are in Seattle, and are winning. Right?  I guess that proves you have to play every down to win.
  • There has been a lot of news coverage about Obamacare this past week.  People are arguing about the grandfathering in clause for older policies, but the reality is that millions are seeing their current policies cancelled and are being required to purchase new policies that are often times much more expensive than the policy that is being cancelled.  No matter what you call it or who you blame, this doesn’t look good or sell well.
  • Windy here today in Sacramento.  And you know what that means in November?  I have to sweep lots of leaves out of the pool.  Again and again.  Over and over.  Lather. Rinse. Repeat.
  • Here come the Seahawks…

Twitter IPO Week!

image No election this November, but you can vote on $TWTR stock as Twitter IPOs this week. Everyone is comparing this IPO to $FB (Facebook) in 2012.  The FB IPO was botched with delays and pricing problems.  Yet, FB is now well above the IPO price of 2012, after shakily visiting the teens.

So what will happen with Twitter?  Should people dive in on IPO day?

I did on FB; but, I will not on TWTR.  Maybe later…  I’m still worried about a correction or pullback in stock prices, which would hit the high flyers especially hard.  And it looks as if this will be a high flyer, as the market has had a great year and folks “want in” and/or are trying to play catch  up with their 2013 performance numbers.

My thoughts, anyway…

Microsoft Surface Pro 2 Won’t Power On

For those with a Microsoft Surface Pro 2 where it won’t power on, try holding the volume up and then press down on power for about 10 seconds or so, then release power and then release volume up, and then press power on again.

Problem solved.

Just a quick solution.  It just happened to me and I was trying everything to unbrick the thing.  Anyway, it’s not like I haven’t had to hard reset the iPad or Nexus before, either.  And now that I know how… eh, it’s part of the user experience.  LOL

Saturday, November 02, 2013

Is Facebook a Dying Breed? And Twitter?

Are Facebook and Twitter dying breeds?  $FB  $TWTR 

There has been a few stories in the news lately about how teens are abandoning Facebook.  I think it was CNBC that interviewed a 13 year old girl who said she only checked Facebook when she was bored and that none of her friends used FB, but instead used this, that and the other social networking sites.  The linked to article and video wonder if Facebook may face the same fate as MySpace.  Remember that site?  It used to be all the rage!

I think Facebook is entrenched as the social site to use.  It has time and members, and we’re all familiar with the interfaces.  It’s just the online social standard at this point.  A new site has to build up usability and users.  And that’s difficult to do when they have to compete with Facebook, that has 728 million daily users.

Heck, this blog gets a few hundred hits a day and the audioboos/podcasts get 25 to over 1000 listens, based on topic.

Likewise, I think Twitter is the defacto newsfeed standard.  Whenever something is going on live, we turn to Twitter for instant news.  How that gets monetized will be the question.

Friday, November 01, 2013

TGIF Randomosity

  • image The market is fading the opening bounce as I type.
  • The better economic news again could bring fears about the ending or tapering of the FED QE stimulus.  Funny, good economic news bad for the stock market?  Really?
  • FED officials divided over taper. Well Charles Plosser anyway.  He basically told CNBC that the central bank missed an opportunity to reduce the stimulus.  Uh oh.
  • Looking for a dating site that screens out the losers?  $5,000.  Yah.
  • Lost my digital pen for my less-than-a-week old Microsoft Surface Pro 2 already.  On to Best Buy.  Or the MSFT store.   I dunno. 
  • Reading around the sports blogs about the Dolphins win in OT via the safety.  NICE.
  • I’ve never watched Duck Dynasty.
  • It is funny that the “media” seems to think we’re late in the bull market, too.  Like this one:  How bad will new investors get hit?  “Mom-and-pop investors tend to be late to the party.
    ”  I mean, if everyone sees it coming will it really happen?
  • At Starbucks on the Surface Pro 2. Somebody across from me has one, too.  Just saying.  MSFT may have a hit on their hands.
  • Why I have never bought SBUX stock, I don’t know why.  In the Peter Lynch “Buy what you know” realm, this would qualify.  It’s packed.  It’s always packed here!
  • Leftover Halloween candy is the devil.