Monday, January 31, 2011

Monday Screening

Storm tomorrow for a bout 6 inches of snow and then a huge storm all day Wednesday for another 15 inches of the white stuff. Just unreal.

Monday Screening
Monday is screening night! I am working in The PPT and the 12631 tonight. Not much looking too interesting, I will update later if I find anything that I am going to trade.

Market is ugly right here and long side bets are harder to find all of a sudden. Figures.

Not much turning up on my screens. Best looking ideas are HSY, AMRC, and BMY.

Going in long with HSY and AMRC. Smallish positions.

Have a good night.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Anti-Centrifuge Conspiracy

Snow again for both Tuesday and Wednesday. Another 16 inches or so. No comment.

The Anti-Centrifuge Conspiracy
I have been thinking about something for a little while and now I want to share it with the readers. Are you sure you really want to know the truth? You cannot go back once you go forward.

I want to accuse the large conglomerate product makers, mega firms like Proctor and Gamble, of a worldwide centrifuge suppression conspiracy. There, now it's out there.

What am I talking about? From Wikipedia:
A centrifuge is a piece of equipment, generally driven by an electric motor (some older models were spun by hand), that puts an object in rotation around a fixed axis, applying a force perpendicular to the axis. The centrifuge works using the sedimentation principle, where the centripetal acceleration causes more dense substances to separate out along the radial direction (the bottom of the tube). By the same token, lighter objects will tend to move to the top (of the tube; in the rotating picture, move to the centre).
It's all so clear to me now.

I of course use centrifuges all the time at work and thus I should have figured this all out before. What am I talking about?

You know that bottle of hand lotion that uses a pump to dispense the stuff? Or hand soap? Or anything somewhat viscous in a bottle? Yeah that stuff. Is it not strange that those bottles can still be HALF FULL yet you cannot get any more product out because it is not near the pick up for the pump? Then what? You have to BUY ANOTHER item, that's what! Volume sales indeed.

This goes on and on from toothpaste to body soap to motor oil in the bottles. There is tons of product left that you cannot get to!

A home centrifuge would allow you to spin down the product to concentrated areas so all of it could be used. Here is a centrifuge with a rotor and holders that could work:

Now these are kind of expensive, but that has to do with the fact that scientists buy them. If I buy aluminum foil through our Biotech supplier, it is like $20 for a box of Reynolds wrap! I can buy it at Walmart for $2. It's how the game is played.

I would think GE or Sears would have made a home model centrifuge by now to allow the full usage of the product that you paid for. As such, there are none because the power players obviously buy up any small company that tries this and closes the doors forever. Think of all the profit they stand to lose if you actually use the full amount of stuff you bought! Think of all that toothpaste alone!

There comes a time to speak truth to power.

A home centrifuge must be allowed to market. It will be good for the environment. It will result in less waste. You will be able to look your children in the eye and feel that you are doing the very best you can for them. All this and so much more.
Disclosure: Long assorted centrifuge device makers, but that is not a conflict as I see it.

Have a good night.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

From 1971: The Fight of the Century

Maybe it was the Rocky music from last night, but I am on a boxing history kick!

EconomicDisconnect used to box (when I was young!) and when I work out I still prefer boxing training in my basement gym to any other type of work out. I hate MMA fighting, there is no real art to it. Before I get angry comments, I know there is and many people love it and I know how hard it is but it's nothing like the art and beauty of boxing.

From 1971: The Fight of the Century
Wikipedia usually has a great write up for most things but I found the entry for the first fight between Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali a little weak. Here it is:
Fight of the Century

A better write up from East Side Boxing:
Fight of The Century: Still Nothing Close To It 33 (40 now) Years Later

Short version:
Muhammad Ali was controversial with his stance against the Vietnam War. He even refused military service. Ali had converted to the Muslim faith and changed his name from Cassius Clay. Ali had been stripped of his title over the long delay and his military service issues. Joe Frazier won a long tournament to win the title. Frazier was respected and admired for his quite workman-like style.

After a long layoff, Ali was set to fight Frazier. The whole world was watching. The immortal Don Dunphy has the call and here is the fight in 4 parts by the wonder that is YouTube.

Rounds 1-3

Ali started fast and won all 3 rounds on my card.

Rounds 4-7

Frazier comes alive a bit and the fight heats up. A left hook from Frazier with 37 seconds left in the 4th round would foreshadow later events.

Rounds 8-11

The meat of the fight. The pace picks up and it is clear Frazier is wearing Ali down. Ali had just won a gruelling fight against a very good fighter, Oscar Bonavena (KO 15) and it becomes clear Ali is running out of gas. Still, in round 9 Ali almost ended the fight. The last 30 seconds of round 9 would have stopped any other fighter, just unreal how Frazier stayed upright! Flip the table and Frazier was so close to stopping Ali in the 11th round, so close. Watch the last 1:08 of round 11 to see. Ali was out on his feet.

Rounds 12-15

Ali composes himself and wins round 14 big. But then the 15th starts and what a finish! While leading on all cards, Frazier summons a gargantuan left hook to begin round 15 and puts Ali flat! What a shot. This round cements the win for Frazier. I had it scored 9 rounds to 6, but one judge gave Frazier 11 of 15 rounds which was a bit much.

A few pictures of the fight:

What an amazing contest. 40 years later and I still spool these clips up late night and watch the fight.

Have a good night.

Friday, January 28, 2011

What Would Get Me Excited as a New Technology?

Having Thursday's off should be standard procedure. Today was so easy!

On Egypt
In a former life EconomicDisconnect was a serious student of things foreign policy and a heavy duty reader of strategic items. Sites like StratFor and The Strategy Page were regular looks. That died out over time. As such, I am unprepared to offer anything but my opinion on the crisis in Egypt, but I feel the moment is important enough to get something down.

We have no idea what is really causing this revolt. I am uneasy with how staunchly the US has always sided with the Mubarak regime and of course now our policy makers would have you think they are all for "freedom" or whatever. This (along with Tunisia) is linked directly to free money the word over that the US supplies. Consequences be damned, as long as it is someone else. I am watching with interest but also concern. You never, ever know what will come about after a real revolution.

Quick Market Take
No idea why everyone got all scared today, but I would not read into it much. I am excited as this will provide me with an actual down day to run my oversold screen. I don't think a serious correction is at hand unless things really get bad over the weekend. We shall see.

What Would Get Me Excited as a New Technology?
I have been skeptical about new age companies that are believed to make quadrillions in cash going forward for all time because most do not make sense to me longer term. I am not stuck in the stone age though, I can see new ideas that will actually matter.

While most are obsessed with finding the next big way to post pictures and talk to people (Facebook, Skype, etc) or a way to get 50% off useless crap one time (Groupon, etc) some are actually looking to break barriers and invent a new way forward.

I have spoken at length about Natural Products and their application for therapeutics. Linked molecules are also a novel idea whose time has come (WHEN Avila Therapeutics goes public you WILL WANT to be in that name!). But perhaps nature has tricks we have not even begun to take advantage of.

A write up over at Io9 should wet your appetite for what I am talking about:
Scientists Make Next Generation Computers with Gold and DNA
Stop, I know what you are thinking. This is the EconomicDisconnect Holy Grail! DNA and gold, he is biased! Read on Grasshopper:
Optical computing technology, a growing field in the tech sector, involves computers that send data using beams of light. In order to expand the capabilities of optical computing, engineers are required to find materials that manipulate light very precisely. Photonic crystals are one such helpful material. A photonic crystal can block very precise wavelengths of light, making it a great optical tool. But creating such a crystal is a challenge. Now scientists have tested a new method for making them, and they have done using the coolest materials possible: Gold and virus parts.

Tiny gold nanospheres and pieces of virus were hooked together using strands of DNA. The DNA pieces were created specifically for the experiment. Small spheres of gold attach to certain base pairs and form part of the lattice. Gold, while malleable for a metal, is relatively heavy and rigid for such a small structure. The lattice is made more bendable by its organic component, capsids, which are what make up the protein shells of viruses. These bits of virus 'skin' string together the tough gold spheres.

A mix of all of these components - DNA, capsids, and gold spheres - self-assembles into a lattice. The structure of that lattice can, with certain materials, be made into a photonic crystal. No one would have to build a crystal to use in optical computing, mixing together the right ingredients could make it build itself.
While science has looked for years into superconductors for quantum applications, here we have a new way to think about the next generation of computing. This could be big but obviously it will take time. And money. Money better spent than on the Facebook IPO.

Here is the research paper:
DNA-controlled assembly of a NaTl lattice structure from gold nanoparticles and protein nanoparticles
I have read the complete paper 3 times and this will work. I can actually do this kind of work and if an opportunity comes up for a job in this field my resume will be at the door on fire. It is beyond the scope of this blog to get too into this but be sure this is a great new idea that has me excited. See, I can do tech!

Friday Night Entertainment
After a hard week, you know you need some fun. Here it comes.

Robot News
It has been a while without a robot update, but maybe I was trying not to scare you. Here you go, a robot that can tie ties. Creepy.

Top Ten Catch Phrases
Another Io9 find, Top Ten Catch Phrases You Swore You'd Never Use (and when you used them).Sample:
"Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die."
What it's from: Princess Bride
When you say it: Twenty minutes after you saw The Princess Bride. With a ruler in your hand, and your only pair of boots while your very-much-alive father shaves in the bathroom down the hall. Oh please, like you weren't all dying to say this one as soon as you heard it.

Did You Know?
Time to play Did You Know?
-What the heck a capsid even is?
-Jupiter is thought to have acted as a solar system comet and asteroid picker upper (due to enormous gravity field) and may have allowed Earth to remain relatively unharmed by impacts? It is still going on. Thanks big guy!
-There is debate on just how Indian technology was able to fashion the Iron Pillar of Delhi?
-This is what chicken nuggets are?
-Amarillo Slim once won a bet he could hit a golf ball a mile distance?

Film Clips
Load your Netflix list with a couple of gems.

I have featured "Fat Man and Little Boy" before but here is another shot. My man Josh Brown was discussing Uranium this week and this put a scene in my head. While doing a criticality experiment on the Demon Core an accident happens that almost became the first atomic detonation quite a bit ahead of schedule:

Great film.

Dustin Hoffman is one of the finest actors of all time and this scene from "Tootsie" is a standout in my mind:

Too much.

Rock Blogging
Some tunes to send you off on a good note.

I have had the final song in Rocky I in my head all day so here it is, "Going the Distance":

2:20 -2:40 mark is pure AWESOME!

Loyal reader Gawains wanted some Black Sabbath, and you know that's just fine with me. Take a listen to "Wicked World":

Nice pick!

I have seen many 'Walk like an Egyptian" videos today! Why that one (Egypt obviously) when you can run "Hazy Shade of Winter" by The Bangles instead?:

ROCK ON ladies, especially Susanna!

Two left, I gotta run.

With all the problems Charlie Sheen is having, it put me in mind of the film Cadence, which I love. Great film and great singing. Check out this clip of a Church song:

Wow on the last 30 seconds.

Last call!

Closing with Dragonforce for all you Guitar Hero fans! "Through the Fire and the Flames" should get you all riled up:

Have a good night.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Market Currents

Another 10 inches of snow here. This is getting ridiculous. The snowbanks on the sides of the roads are about 6 feet tall. Massachusetts right now is 3 times over the usual snowfall for the period of December-end of January!

Forgot to add, get some requests in for Friday night!

Protect Yourself With Silver
Long time readers know I am a fan of the metals gold and especially silver. I wanted to take a minute and talk to you about a way to protect yourself day in and day out with the silver that you can carry with you without worry of theft. Are you ready for this? Ok, here it is:
Degree Silver Ion Deodorant

Protect yourself with the unique antibacterial effects of free silver ions in this new stick just made for bullion buyers. I bought the arctic edge scent myself (far right of ad above), and it rocks! Not only do you feel you are protected from all things financial catastrophe, but your armpits actually feel like they have some real worth! Instant self confidence booster! With this I wake up in the morning and piss excellence! This stuff sells itself, but I would gladly endorse this product for Degree for a small fee. If I were Degree I would get this stuff on Kitco and Zero Hedge ads pronto!
Disclosure: No position in Degree, physical position in silver.

Difference of Opinion
I have to say up front I may be a 34 year old guy going on 65 when I am inundated with all the "this will change the world" type talk about various things. I just don't get it, or maybe I just don't use the stuff so it makes little impression on me. Herding behavior for the "next hot thing" is tangible it seems so there is always that. Take Facebook, a site where you can post pictures and talk to people in real time. Wow, blows me away. Nothing like it ever, just amazing. Think of the possibilities of such an application. Mindblowing indeud.

Another is the Groupon lovefest. Group buying coupons to generate sales. Ok, makes some sense. Network, get a deal, all are happy.

Leigh Drogen, one of the sharpest and dialed in to new trends guys I read, is a strong supporter of this business model (not just Groupon in particular) and he opines:
They’re all coming out of the woodwork now. From Priceline, to Travelzoo, OpenTable, and now even Facebook, the group buying revolution is on like donkeykong. Everyone wants a piece, and they will all get one. The list of Groupon clones is long and distinguished, there is even an aggregator of all these daily e-mails, Yipit.

Some of you luddites may confuse this for a fad.

This is a revolution in the way local businesses advertise and people consume. The buzz phrase is collaborative consumption, get used to hearing it. This is the underlying reason that this business model works. Sure, it’s nice to get served a discount to a nice restaurant, but this is so much more. I forward these things to my friends during the work day, we have an e-mail chain, and then we pick one and eat dinner together. It’s about social, it’s about doing things together, it’s about connecting people.

The valuations for these companies are sky high, as they should be. This is a new industry, one where many of these companies are cash flow positive from an extremely early age, have little overhead, and a huge chance to grow. No one has any clue in the world how big this industry is going to be, you can’t model it, impossible. What does all this add up to? High valuation multiples and huge price momentum.
Sounds good!
I thought Facebook connected us, but whatever. This does too, and with sales! In the comments I offered:
I will be up front, I do not get this kind of stuff but that does not mean it will not be huge. Thanks for the big picture look.
On a macro level, aren't these sites very deflationary? How does this impact bottom lines going forward? While Groupon may go sky high, by definition of the service they offer sellers will be pressed on pricing, no?
What makes a good blogger in my mind is interaction, connectedness with the readers and Mr. Drogen responded very quickly which I appreciate:
No, not deflationary. Think of the discount in terms of the cost of
customer acquisition
. The businesses that should be using Groupon and the
like are the ones that want to acquire loyal customers for repeat business.
This is a way to get them in the door and hooked on your product or
service. It's all a customer acquisition play for the small business owner.
Fair enough.
Not wanting to take up anymore time over there I thought about this tonight for a post here.

I still do not get it. As a customer grabbing idea it makes sense, but then what? If your business has a clone (and almost all do), they will offer coupon buys too. On any given day someone will be, what happens to you?

Add to this the nature of such a thing. Once you get something 20, 30, or 40% off you are not going to pay full price unless they drag you kicking and screaming. Best Buy did this a long while ago and buried the competition on price. Now they cannot raise prices! I think this is long term deflationary, but not in anything useful as usual. As always it is important to keep in mind one's own bias; I don't use this stuff at all and fail to see the utility. Others use this type of stuff and think everyone in the world will too by next week. If I had to bet, I am probably wrong!
My friend Mark from the now often stolen phrase of "Illusion of Prosperity" offered this anecdote when I asked his take:
I am 100% entirely in your camp! Of course it is deflationary.
I can even off you some proof if you wish to share it.
My girlfriend signed me up for LivingSocial. Ack. I gave her a really hard time about it. She even used my personal email address! Now I get spammed with daily offers.
However, they recently offered me a $20 gift card for just $10. No joke!
How much more deflationary can it get? Spend $10 to get $20? And what exactly is in it for Do they need to get the word out? Has nobody heard of yet? Good grief!
Thanks Mark!

Market Currents
A market going up forgives all ills and this one has for some time. Over the past couple of weeks there have been some misses on earnings and Amazon (AMZN) missed by a bit tonight. It was the snow that hurt the biggest ONLINE store, but whatever. We will leave all that aside for now and we should.

Tim Knight had a video recap up tonight and the intro really jumped out at me. He said (paraphrasing!) that IF the markets went down 10% there would howls and cries for the government to do something about it. I have to agree 100% with Tim. This is where we are now. The recovery is real remember.

How pervasive has this perpetual motion move up been? Amazing really. I am hoping very much for tomorrow to be flat to slightly down and more of that on Monday. Why? Because that would mean the market is oversold by the new normal standards. What good would that be? BTFD! Check this out.

Using the screen I set up looking for oversold (loose term) stocks that have some other parameters I look for, here are the returns over the past month IF I had bought when I screened them and held them to today. There were more that I screened out on other factors:
Screen on 1/7/11 and hold until 1/27/11
NFLX +18%
EW +8%
Screen on 1/24/11 and hold until 1/27/11
FICO +10%
TRCR +2%
ABCO +4%
AFSI +4%
PBTH +2%
Scary, yes? I am not cherry picking. These names I had in my trading notebook (yes, I write stuff down!) I posted most of them the 24th. The few losers were selected against by other criteria, namely sometimes a stock is oversold because it is going to zero (FLML).

So if we are flat or ever so slightly down for a couple days I am running this screen and doing some buying!

Going Long Rock Salt
First is was the GDP of the UK going negative. Then it was weak Amazon numbers, an online retailer. Then it was, an online job search tool. The culprit in all cases? Snow! Bad weather is the murderer of growth dreams and the grim reaper of bottom line growth. Who knew?

Thanks to a poster over at the 12631 (gappingandyapping), we can all go long rock salt (via CMP):

You can use this as a hedge should online streaming media firms report misses due to snow slowing down the Internets. Wow, nice breakout.

Have a good night.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Am I Bummed Out About My Netflix Trade?

Another snow storm for tonight and into tomorrow. I will probably take the day off.

Am I Bummed Out About My Netflix Trade?
I have been open about my new trading strategy so far in the new year. I wanted to take a minute and discuss my Netflix (NFLX) trade that I had on earlier this month in light of tonight's earnings release and stock price run up after hours.

Quick recap;
Using the iBankCoin PPT trading algo and screening for (their hybrid score) oversold stocks that had high institutional ownership I was a little surprised to see NFLX show up as it almost never seems to get oversold. The other stock I found was Edwards Biosciences (EW). There were quite a few other stocks or ETF's that showed up, but these two I liked the best on a short term risk/reward metric after working the charts and doing my own analysis.

Here is a 4 hour chart of NFLX that shows the basic setup I was looking at on January 7, 2011 via FreeStockCharts:

I do not want to hash out all the particulars, I am not a trading teacher. I liked:
-Oversold condition (both chart wise and Hybrid OverSold score)
-Momentum oscillators favorable for an uptick
-Overall favorable market (everything going up)

I entered in at $178 and had a target to the upside of 10%, or about $196. The action on the stock was very favorable and I was even very close to my target around January 18 ($192). So what happened?

Things happened. They always will and do.

Steve Jobs announced he was taking a leave from Apple and that put a fear jolt into the tech space for whatever reason. Market internals began to weaken as well. Momentum stocks in general (I call them MOMO stocks) began to get walloped after Coinstar (CSTR) blew up (down 25%) after missing earnings by some fraction. Tom Demark said the world was going to end (stocks to pull back 10%, OH NO!). All this was going on and and you know what, it doesn't matter.

I never had any intention of holding a MOMO type stock into earnings (see CSTR). As the chart for NFLX began to weaken on the hourly looks, I rolled up stops to protect gains. I was stopped out on January 20 at $188 for a gain of about 6%. I felt pretty good about my discipline and a nice gain. NFLX would move to as low as $180 in the following days.

So what's the point of this post? It is this:
Netflix reaches 20M subscribers in 4Q, lifting earnings 52 percent; stock soars 9 percent
NFLX is trading at around $200 tonight in after hours trading.

Am I bummed out? Sure, that was the move I wanted and then some. Who would not be a little down after that? I am human, not a robot.

Am I really upset? Not at all. I stayed with my plan and traded my style, conservative and protective of gains. I observed the technicals of the situation and acted accordingly. I was pleased with how I was able to use the PPT tools to find two stocks I never would have bought otherwise and I felt confident about my trades.

Well, that 13-15% pop would have been nice to ride though......

Have a good night.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

More Snow on the Way

Another 10-15 inches of snow on tap for Wednesday night into Thursday morning. Day off on the way!

Today's Humor
No time for a post tonight, so a little humor.

From Zero Hedge via John Lohman:

Classic, yet probably true over the past few sessions.

Have a good night.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Homework Night

It was negative two degrees here this morning (-2)! That's all I have to say.

Homework Night
Seeing that I did no work all weekend I am going to do some screening tonight and look for some new trading ideas. I will be using the iBankCoin PPT as well as their secondary offering the 12631. I will update later if I come across something I am putting to work.

For a couple of great philosophical missives here are two I really liked this wee:

Jesse opines on rampant fraud and corruption in things economic.

Ilargi talks about unemployment and another FED trick to hide losses for all time.

I sold EW tonight for a 6% gain. I still like the chart but this company seems hell bent on buying something soon so I will sidestep that drop for now.

Update again
Screening for two hours now. Not much standing out to me. Going to review TRCR, ABCO, and PBTH. I like TRCR the most but no hurry as the setup may take a bit.

TRCR, do you see what I see?:

Have a good night.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

It's Settled

It's Settled
Well, it's all over!

Hats of to the Packers! What a complete team.

The Steelers are unreal from bottom to top. Bye bye Jets, nice to see you again.

This Superbowl could be the best ever, what a match up.

Have a good night.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Saturday Night

I was supposed to do some homework on trades and make new screens but in the end I did basically nothing today and that was just fine! Maybe tomorrow.

This Cat is Getting Big
When we picked out of new kitten Jessie one of the main reasons was that she was 6 months old (supposedly!) and still seemed a bit on the small side. I thought that would work well because I wanted Norman the Pug to be relaxed around her. Fair enough.

On our first vet appointment for the cat, we were informed she was really closer to 4 months old and already large for that age. Uh oh. Jessie has been here since the week before Christmas and she is already getting as long as the dog! I am starting to fear that she may be part Maine Coon Cat! She has a real wild streak. Here are the two kids on the couch and you can see how she has grown up already compared with earlier pictures:

Uh oh.

Star Wars of Course
A little Star Wars stuff never hurt, right?

How about this:
The 20 Most Memorable Moments of the Expanded Universe
■The Death of Chewbacca
■Vader Remembers See-Threepio
■Enter General Grievous
■Heirs of the Sith: Anakin Skywalker Meets Asajj Ventress
■The Artistic Fate of Grand Admiral Thrawn
■Boba Fett Escapes the Sarlacc
■Jacen Solo Descends into the Rings of Hell
■Borsk Fey'lya, A Noble End for the Guy You Love To Hate
■Luke Duels with Darth Vader for the First Time... Before The Empire Strikes Back
■The Death of Ton Phanan
■Darth Vader vs. Darth Maul
■Luke vs. Lumiya
■Luke Skywalker Creates a Jedi Academy
■Aayla Secura Appears on the Big Screen
■Crix Madine, A Life in Service to the New Republic
■Exar Kun Gives in to the Dark Side
■The Redemption of Ulic Qel-Droma
■The Pregnancy of Mara Jade Skywalker
■The Emperor Reborn
■Ganner Rhysode, A Hero at the Gates

Sorry, but yes Chewbacca is dead:


Still one of my favorite art works from the Expanded Universe, Corran Horn battles Shedao Shai on Ithor:

The novel Dark Tide: Ruin is one of the better EU books.

Just ran across Bill Dance's best fishing bloopers and it is a howl:
Fishing Bloopers
Have a good night.

Friday, January 21, 2011

This is THE Post that Will Change Your Investment Life

If you want to change how you invest so that the wife will act like a college girl again and the kids will not mind when you pick them up from school then reading this post is something you simply must do.

Kidding! I was just trying to get a catch all title, per Josh Brown's lesson!

Conference Title Weekend
I am still disgusted with football, but here are the quick picks for the Title games:
Chicago Bears 27, Green Bay Packers 24
New York Jets 21, Pittsburgh Steelers 16
Wow, I actually typed the Jets winning.....Ugh.

Open Market Operations
I will be working up some ideas for trades this weekend. As we got snowed in again today I should have plenty of time. I don't have too much to say for the weeks end, it was a muddled finish with no clear result. More this weekend.

Friday Night Entertainment
The best day of the week!

A Big Steel Keg Lands a New Home
Longtime readers know I am a total convert to lump charcoal cooking on my Big Steel Keg. This thing is the greatest cooker ever, IMO. There are tons of pictures on this site featuring the results of the cooking. One of my inspirations for the buy, as well as the place were I steal most of my tricks, is No Excuses BBQ. The author Zydecopaws is a great cook and he added a Big Steel Keg to his expansive cooking arsenal:
Bubba Ho-Keg Gets a Brother
He already had the first release, the Bubba Keg, but the newer version has many more features. Enjoy!
(No affiliation with InZone, the makers of the product, but would accept big money to plug the product.)

Coolness Corner
Things I thought were great this week:
The Knokkers Game (It is not what you think!)
Mark Visser surfing in Fiji at Midnight! This guy is crazy.

Did You Know?
Here is another set.

-Victor Gruen designed the first shopping mall and thus condemned Americans to a life of shopping? Thanks for that Vick!
-In 1956, a B-47 (SN: 52-534) that carried two cases (what?) of nuclear material was lost and no crash site was ever found?
-The domestic Cat is an obligate carnivore?
-Told you this would happen soon:

Fun with Images
Some funnies for the night.

See what the real recovery looks like?:
demotivational posters - DARTH VAGRANT
see more Very Demotivational

I have the new Batman film spoiler right here!:

Film Clips
Give a film a chance by renting it, streaming it, or whatever you do. I no longer am in NFLX so no conflict of interest!

Richard Dreyfuss somehow seems to show up in many of my most liked films. In the great flick "Let it Ride" he plays a small time gambler that goes on a hot streak and has fun the whole way:

Jennifer Tilly is in the film as well, so that maybe helps!

While not a great film, "Pink Cadillac" had both Clint Eastwood and Bernadette Peters. I have had a crush on Bernadette for some time and as soon as the restraining order is lifted I will let her know it! Anyways, check out an all time BURN at the 3:47-4:10 mark:


Rock Blogging
Running low on time so there will be only three songs!

I know I need to think about the summertime while buried under snow, so let's go with Eddie Cochran and "Summertime Blues", live even!:


This one goes out to Downtown Josh Brown of The Reformed Broker fame. Hip hop ain't not my thing, but here is Snow with "Informer" just for a change of pace:


Last call! Time to close the show.

I will go with Candlemass and "At the Gallows End" from the Nightfall album which rocks:

These guys were good, if a bit dark.

Have a good night.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Total Coverage

A somewhat more muted day than I would have thought but still plenty going on. That is good as it keep me from thinking about the NFL playoffs and the Patriots in particular, until......

Watched the Second Half of Patriots vs. Jets on NFL Network
After the Patriots failed to move the ball at all on their opening 3rd quarter drive last week, I turned the TV off and went about making lunches for the wife and I for Monday, brushing my teeth, getting changed, and other errands. I knew what was going to happen. I switched the game on a t the very end to see the score a caught a few highlights (lowlights?) on ESPN. I gave in and watched the second half last night on NFL Network. Wish I did not.

The game was won as the Pats were down only 3 points and the Jets had a play where Crotchery (or whatever his name is) came out in the slot, ran into the center of the field, and the Patriots never had anyone on him and the middle linebacker Spikes ran off to the sideline to cover a wide receiver who was double covered already. Given 35 yards of room and an open throw the game was over then. So glad I did not see that live as I may have destroyed the TV.

Total Coverage
Quite a few things caught my eye today so here we go.

What am I Doing?
I thought I had been pretty clear what my New Year strategy was going to be but maybe I was not clear enough. I want to be more active in my own trading and after testing the iBankCoin PPT product, I felt like it was a great tool for my own use. Using screens I designed I came up with a couple of ideas to try based solely on TECHNICAL stuff, not long term fundamentals or other things. I have bashed NFLX plenty here and I do not believe they are going to be a long term winner (some reasons below) but the chart was right and the score I used offered a shot at a 10% return in a short period of time. Readers will know I aim for 10% TOTAL return yearly on my holdings, so this was interesting. Now I did not commit too much to the trade, about 15% of my trading account, but I felt good about it. A couple days ago I was up almost 9% and should have called it a day, but I was ok with the chart. Then an outlier event occurred (Steve Jobs) and everyone got nervous all of a sudden, like a cancer patient on immuno suppressive drugs is not going to get cancer after a transplant? Ok. I had rolled up stops all the way and was closed out first thing in the morning at 188 and change for about a 6% gain.

I know trading POMO-MOMO stocks is dangerous and that bad stuff can happen. I am not stupid. No one needs to worry, I will be fine.

I am still in EW, and the same tight stops apply. Of course as Kid Dynamite has noted, overnight blow-ups will take you out even with stops but after the flash crash unless you want to day trade and be out every day at days end, it is what it is. I will be looking for new trades this weekend. Instead of worry, offer ideas guys!

Gold and Silver Charts You Need to See
My fellow blogger Mark of Illusion of Prosperity, has a couple of charts well worth a look if you are a believer in the metals which I am. Here is the Gold chart (Gold vs. All Commodities-PPI):

And Silver:

Thanks Mark!

Mark and I just do not see things in the same light and that is fine. I even sent him a Christmas card the last two years as proof!

Now when I see these things I think in terms of total credit outstanding, debt outstanding, what I have termed notional money, etc. The last bubble was tied to severe inflation and the release of the gold standard. I was just a baby in the late 70's'-early 80's (yet that is my musical preference, go figure!) so I guess I am dumb and cannot make the connection to commodities only as a comparison. Of course I am biased and you should know I have a large physical gold and silver position to this day (don't worry, I am aware they can gap down overnight!). I guess one could always take thousands of metric tons of corn with them to escape a country, or just some gold:
Tunisia Central Bank Admits It Is Missing 1.5 Tons Of Gold
I am being a bit glib here, but I guess at this point I don't want to debate this angle any more. Either you believe notional money will cease and reality will be upon us, or you don't.

Now I am not a gold/silver at any price sort. My near term targets may scare metal bulls!:
Gold: $1250
Silver: $22.50
I am not insane, smarter folks than I see some of the same stuff. I would be very interested in those targets should they come up.

The Internet, Social Media, and Cattle
No worries, it will all make sense!

One of my absolute favorite films starred Albert Brooks and Meryl Streep in "Defending Your Life". If you have not seen it, put away the IPad, cell phone, computer, and settle in with someone you really care about and WATCH the film!

Ok, where was I? Oh yes Cattle! Barry reminds us today:
Cattle Prices Stampeding
Which brought to the following memory. In the film Albert Brooks had a chance to get into Casio Corp but went with Cattle instead (skip to 1:45 mark):

"I never got a straight answer. All I know is their teeth fell out."

Social Media and the Internet Combined
Has anyone else heard enough?

The Internet is as big as it gets. So 90% of it is porn? Big deal, what isn't?

One of my long term issues with a company like Netflix (NFLX) is that the Internet will get them in the end. Is it hard to imagine in 2, 4, 10 years film premiers in London-Los Angeles-etc then an instant feed of the film right to your home? Who needs a cinema except 15 year olds that want to make out? Most 20 somethings will live at home until they are 30 somethings anyway (no jobs!) so why not watch a film in the parents basement apartment! The Internet is the single greatest invention ever that is misunderstood to this day. It lowers things, it does not bring them up. What can be almost free will always be so, big splashes aside. This is a long term trend that cannot be fought.

Social Media makes even less sense. I am not that into such things, but one of my friends is VERY into it. He blocks all ads and will bolt if a Facebook ever tries to monetize usage ("so corporate!" he says). Indeud.

My man Josh Brown is on the other side of the fence on this, and writes:
With Facebook, however, the game is about being there - placement. As big ad buyers come to Facebook, the company is wisely selling ads the way Yankee Stadium does: There's no way that Budweiser can tell how many incremental beers were sold based on their having a giant billboard in center field, they just know that they have to be seen there.

Every single large corporation now has a line item on their ad budgets for social media and it is said to be double what the number was for last year according to my peeps in the business. With the disappearance of MySpace from these budgets, Facebook basically has this game on smash right now.

Fair enough.

What will the return be? The same as junk mail? Does anyone even see ads on web pages anymore (besides the ones with big boobs!)?

He is right though, they will spend because they have to. Returns be damned!

Look, times are changing and I get that. The total interconnectedness idea is great in theory.

I have a few long term, more philosophical ideas about all this that I believe will be macro issues for such things going forward. It is not now. Email me (top left!) and I will share them with you, but for now I will be silent. The Pony Express allowed better contact, then the Telegraph, then the Telephone, then the Internet, then Mobile devices, now Social Media. And all the time people got more distant. Go figure. It's called the diffusion principle:
One cannot be all places at all times at the same concentration.

Increase, AGAIN, Au/Ag margins!

Have a good night.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

How Can this Happen?

Snow coming Friday and no real interest in the NFL Playoffs. Going to be a long weekend.

How Can this Happen?
All the stock market indices closed......DOWN! I know, one would think a circuit breaker would be tripped or David Tepper would come out and tell us all will be well (he is scheduled for CNBC on Friday!).

I have to admit, I cannot remember a down day, not a real one anyway. Today was not even that bad, but it was red candles all over. As far as my holdings go, NFLX closed above my stop, but after hours looks like a sure trigger in the morning. Easy come easy go but I will still be up a bit. EW actually closed positive. I will update when I see what happens tomorrow.

What do I make of today's action? I saw at least 20 write ups already asking if this is "the top" or "the start of something bigger". I wish I knew of course. As of now I am of the mind that this was one off sell off and things should quiet down tomorrow. Chart wise nothing I was looking at got hurt too much, but tomorrow is another day. All I know is all the stuff that has been the same for a LONG time all of a sudden is getting discussed like it was new and something to worry about. Ok.

In a market where psychology is maybe worth 50-70% of a stocks movement over the last year and dent or fear is going to leave a mark. Those conditioned to "Buy the Fiing Dip" (BTFD) should be out in full force to get "beaten down" stocks which lost a whopping 1-3%. If they do not show up.....well I think you can imagine things will change at that point. Tomorrow will be worth watching.

Have a good night.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Snow and Ice

More weather related news!

Snow and Ice
There was supposed to be a mostly rain storm today but late last night the weather crews all switched to "plenty of snow and then changing to freezing rain". Fun. The ride into work was fine, and I left around noon to come home. It took 2 hours to get 30 miles but it could have been far worse. There is no place to keep putting all this snow! I even cleared off the back deck because I was starting to worry about how much weight was on it. And know what else? More snow for Friday! Now if the Patriots had won last Sunday I maybe would have taken Friday off and started AFC title game celebration super early. Not happening.

As of right now I am looking for new positions for trades. I am still long $NFLX and $EW as my stops were not hit to the downside and I have moved them up a bit more after some more upside to both stocks. As of today I am at:
NFLX = +8.8%
EW = +7%
Getting close to my 10% targets for each. We shall see.

I am reviewing $ICON for a possible buy based on a screen.

Other items:
-Meredith Whitney is getting slammed for her call on Muni debt. Muni funds have been getting killed and it is hard to know if it was her call or just structural weakness. Either way what struck me as funny is the idea that the all knowing market could be messed with by some words from one analyst. Pretend is a huge part of our financial system after all.
-$AAPL had another monster quarter. The Steve Jobs news had a more pronounced effect in other markets, but not the US. You all know I am no fan of $AAPL but if and when Jobs is gone I don't see how that effects the company all that much. Of course momentum plays tend to react to all kinds of things in any case.
-Oil over $100, gas over $4, and rapidly rising food prices are all signs of a bullish recovery, yes?
-Riots and general unrest all over the world, must not be Jersey Shore watchers!
-Sounds scary:
Thirty-four millennia ago, some bacteria got trapped inside salt crystals in what is now Death Valley. These crystals were recently dug up and the bacteria freed from their hibernation...and then they started reproducing

-Illegal Immigration funny:
demotivational posters - IMMIGRATION
see more Very Demotivational

Have a good night.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Running Screens on Monday

It was frigid here today! 7 degrees in the morning, yikes! Of course it was going to be cold any way you look at it after the Patriots got destroyed yesterday.

Running Screens on Monday
Not much to write about on a holiday Monday. I am running screens over at the PPT tonight looking for new ideas. When is it a good time to run screens? Mondays, and when you are faced with press coverage and a zoned middle of the field. Maybe the Patsies could have tried that? No, I guess not.

Anyways, looking for ideas for trades so don't be shy and let me know what you are thinking so I can steal your ideas.

Star Wars Galaxy Map
Could not help it, here is a great Star Wars map of the Galaxy:
The Galaxy
Now find Dagobah!

Have a good night.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Best Headline Ever

On a despondent night full of disbelief and melancholy, I submit this headline via Zero Hedge (and yes I know so many think ZH is a haters club full of idiots that missed a generational move in the markets, but at least they are trying to report real stuff and not get happy market stuff):
Deposed Tunisian President Ben Ali Said To Have Fled
Country With 1.5 Tons Of Gold
Not shares of AAPL, not freeze dried MREs, not shotguns shells, not even €45 million European pieces of linen in a suitcase... Gold. And one wonders why all the physical silver and gold is slowly but surely disappearing from the distributors: someone should really check the cargo hold of Lloyd's, Jamie's and Vikram's G-6 planes...and of course the extra cargo holds in the private helicopter squadron of that "other" Ben, elsewhere now known lovingly with the adjective of Blackhawk (f/k/a Helicopter).


I hate having to do this but I am long NFLX, OMEX, EW, hold a shit load of physical gold and silver (it's in Boston so don't bother!), and I may hold crap stocks in my company's 401k but I don't even look at it.)

New York Jets Will Win the Superbowl

Out muscled, out hustled, out played, physically dominated, totally beat, embarrassed, you name it the New York Jets did it to the New England Patriots. The Jets will win the Superbowl because teams cannot get passed playing the Jets' game. Wish I was an NFL coach.

Congratulations on the blow out New York:

I am sure Jake at EconomPic is happy and well he should be. I will let Jeff (Steeler fans big time!) fight it out with him!

As an aside, EconomicDisconnect is done watching football for all time. Silly stuff this year and I have no more interest in watching buffoons behave like mental patients and exert zero control over their own destinies.

Have a good night in New York.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


Quick take on the playoff games:

No idea! Two half's of two tales and so nuts I have nothing to say

Told you the Falcons defense was bad, but it is THAT bad.

So far the level of play in the playoffs has been worse than ever.


Friday, January 14, 2011

Friday and Fun: 2gether + 4ever = 6cess!

That title brings back the days of trading notes in grade school! Why that came to mind will be apparent below, but that stuff was funny. Remember folding the notes in a way that the teacher could never figure out how to open them? Beats ciphers.

Market Currents
Another day, another move up. I wrote a bit last night about the "wall of worry" and so it continues. Those with a mind to "shake hands with the government" and get in bed with the FED may want to scope out muni related instruments. These things are insane cheap when you consider the soon to be unleashed 100% US Government guarantee. Should not be too long now. This is not investment advice.

My tight stops on EW and NFLX were not triggered today so I remain in both stocks. I will be looking for new trades next week as nothing I turned up using screens late this week really jumped out at me.

Friday Night Entertainment
Sorry for the light content, but I am in a good mood and want to get on with the show!

NFL Divisional Playoffs
After a wild wildcard weekend it is time to see who has what.

Baltimore Ravens at Pittsburgh Steelers (4:30pm Saturday)
This is going to be a rough game. I am torn, they are evenly matched.
Steelers 27, Ravens 24

Green Bay Packers at Atlanta Falcons (8:00pm Saturday)
I am not sold on the Falcons due to their defense not being that good, but they are a good team. I just like the Pack here.
Packers 31, Falcons 28 OT (And remember there are new OT RULES!)

Seattle Seahawks at Chicago Bears (1:00pm Sunday)
This one screams upset special and trap game. I think Julius Peppers will be all too happy to be back in the playoffs and he is the difference late.
Bears 24, Seahawks 20

New York Jets at New England Patriots (4:30pm Sunday)
This third game between the two teams is hard to call. The week 2 drubbing of the Pats in New York was a different Pats team. The Patriots demolition of the Jets a few weeks ago seemed like the Jets were a bit overwhelmed by the moment. I think this game will be the game I expected the last time, a great one.
Patriots 28, Jets 21

Did You Know?
-Pistachios are dangerous cargo?
-That Port Royal in Jamaica (a favorite Pirate destination) was destroyed and engulfed by the sea after an earthquake in 1692?
-The Klenow Fragment enzyme can be used to repair ends of DNA by either chewing off broken ends or filling them in?
-One of the largest planes ever built, The Spruce Goose, was made from wood?

Pictures and Such
A few funnies. I will try and get more pics of my Pug and Cat this weekend. Those two are popular! Maybe I should make them a Facebook page?! I got a bunch of pug art prints for the wife at Christmas which now decorate the kitchen. Here is one, the Pugspresso:

demotivational posters - WRONG
see more Very Demotivational

Potential arbitrage opportunity?:
epic fail photos - Car Wash Math FAIL
see more funny videos

The wife located a first edition book by Jack Finney, "About Time", which is a collection of short stories regarding time travel. I loved it so much! What was funny is that as I was reading the first tale (The Third Level) I had a feeling of deja vu. When I arrived at the end of the story here it was:
941 Willard Street
Galesburg, Illinois
July 18, 1894

I got to wishing that you were right. Then I got to believing you were right. And, Charley, it's true; I found the third level! I've been here two weeks, and right now, down the street at the Dalys', someone is playing a piano, and they're all out on the front Porch singing, “Seeing Nellie home.” And I'm invited over for lemonade. Come on back, Charley and Louisa. Keep looking till you find the third level! It's worth it, believe me!
As I read the first few words I recited the rest in my head! I was instantly transported back to 4th grade when I read this in class! What a memory to come back. Amazing really. Then I started thinking about grade school and thus the title for tonight's post was born.

Rock Blogging
Time for a few tunes to start your playoff weekend!

Loyal reader Watchtower has been here almost since day one way back in 2007 (has it been so long?). Any request of his for Friday night goes (well you know what will not!) so let's start the show with SAGA and "On the Loose":

Never heard it, but I like it!

CT Hilltopper wanted some Depeche Mode, and luckily the wife is their biggest fan! She suggests "Behind the Wheel" and live at that:

NICE! Second choice here.

The last time I played Roy Orbison, I had 19 comments on the post! If you all have not figured it out, comments are like rocket fuel for me, I love it. Lets roll with "I Drove All Night":

Love that one.

I need a Motley Crue fix and so let's go with "Too Young to Fall in Love":

Love it.

Two to go! What shall we play? If I had Twitter I could do a snap poll. Oh well.

Let's close with a little heavy, yes? You know how I roll.

Who remembers Ugly Kid Joe? I do, take a listen to "Everything about You":

Too funny.

Last call! Time to close the show.

You know it's coming! I want Randy Rhoads giving "Iron Man" a new life:


Have a good night.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Wall of Worry or Maginot Line?

The streets of Cambridge Massachusetts are impossible to plow after snow due to the severe uneven surface. The drive into work for the last 15 minutes was a teeth smashing bumpy ride. Still, who can be upset with a monster NFL playoff weekend on tap and some good luck in the markets?

Rolling Up Stops
Here is my trading update for this week:

NFLX: UP 7.6%
EW: UP 4%

I was looking for moves of about 10% so I am a bit short after about a week. Still, both charts look good (more so EW for more break out) so I am not dumping right this second. What I am doing is rolling up tight stops. This may get my shares triggered to a sale with any medium sized market move, but I am looking to do two things:
-Start off my PPT experience on a nice note after using their hybrid scores and a screen I made to find these stock setups
-Maybe move along to some other ideas I have in my bag of tricks that I want to try out, but I do not want to manage too many positions all at once

We will see where things go (remember markets are closed this Monday for MLK day) but in any case I am very pleased with the setups and results of these trades. Thanks ChessNwine!

News of the Weird
A couple of items caught my eye today.

You know my monster fear of robots (and grizzly bears) and here is more:
The Terminator Scenario: Are We Giving Our Military Machines Too Much Power?
I am going to say......YES!!!!!! Great article at the link so check it out.

Ok, has the gold price made gold mining UNDER THE OCEAN a winning idea?:
Offshore Gold Rush: AngloGold, De Beers hunt gold under Atlantic
NEW YORK (CommodityOnline): It is perhaps the biggest global gold hunt under the waters. AngloGold Ashanti (ANG SJ) and De Beers (DBRSY), two of the world’s largest metals and minerals mining companies, are searching for gold deposits under the Atlantic sea.
The companies that formed a joint venture to hunt for gold and other minerals under the sea have officially launched the project to find gold deposits off South Africa’s west coast, to begin with.
Maybe this is a way my beloved OMEX can get a new lease on life as every treasure they find gets blocked by some country looking to get cash for stuff lost at the bottom of the ocean for 100 years, and yes I am looking at you Spain!
Disclosure: Still own a very small position in OMEX which just got back to my buy price.

Memory Lane
As I cannot come up with my own ideas, I am ripping off my man Jeff at The Housing Time Bomb with a stroll down memory lane. Way back when I stated blogging here is what I wrote on October 31st, 2007, and yes I have been doing this a LONG time:
....That's a collection of some of the better chatter going on today. I fully admit that I can offer nothing on these matters. I could dig out data, charts, a Ouija board and still not get through to anyone that can buy the crap listed above. The totally absurd things I saw and read today have convinced me of two things:
-There will be NO downward movement is stocks in the next calendar year
-The housing bust will be bailed out on the banking end, but through blind instruments and FED shenanigans. Do not get me wrong, home prices are going to continue to fall, foreclosures are going to go parabolic, and the home buying industry will be crushed. Just do not expect to see any macro fallout involving banks or major brokerage firms. They will be well cared for. In time the housing problems will not even get a headline, as its only 5% of the economy anyway!
I was right about banks getting the helping hand but I never thought the overall stock market would get whacked so hard! Of course at the time I had so much less understanding of theses things. Still, chilling call on the banks and housing, yes?

Wall of Worry or Maginot Line?
I have to admit I am more of a "bear" than a bull and more of an analytical thinker than a blind momentum type mover. This will always keep me away from "once in a generation" moves in the markets as well as color my vision to "vastly improved data" in regards to many things. It also means I do not lose money. To each his/her own.

As such, I wanted to offer an analogy for today's climate. I submit The Maginot Line:
The French established the fortification to provide time for their army to mobilize in the event of attack, allowing French forces to move into Belgium for a decisive confrontation with German forces. The success of static, defensive combat in World War I was a key influence on French thinking. The fortification system successfully dissuaded a direct attack. However, it was strategically ineffective, as the Germans did indeed invade Belgium, defeated the French army, flanked the Maginot Line, and proceeded relatively unobstructed.
In plain terms, the Germans drove around it. General Patton once said "Fixed fortifications are monuments to the stupidity of man". Indeud.

I think a major reason why I do not write so much anymore (besides a break I really needed for personal reasons) is that there is no more talking to people. I read "stocks climb a wall of worry" but that is not accurate in any way, shape, or form. The FED, assisted by other central banks in great condition like Japan's, have plotted a course around the wall of worry, the Maginot Line of worry if you will. No frontal assault or climb has been attempted, the markets just drove around it. To compare previous metrics to now and say "see things are all right" is disingenuous at best and insulting to anyone with half a brain.

In the end things are what they are. In an severe uptrending market, mistakes and miscues are easily wiped away. This was the plan.

As of late things are getting a bit strained. More and more days close actually down! Market out performers still work, but take a look a the dregs of those sectors and they are no longer following along around the wall of worry.

Have a good night.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Snow Day!

We got hammered here in Massachusetts! Around me it was 15-18 inches as of right now. No way I will go to work on days like this, it's always a mess.

Snow Days
Tons of snow and an avalanche of wacky! Some items that would be head scratchers any other time, now just part of the usual white noise:
-China buys Portugal debt, details unknown to any
-Japan pitching in with Euro debt sales to add to their debt load
-Oil getting into the danger zone
-Muni market resumes ugly show

No worries though!

I will have a more complete post tomorrow, back to working on some ideas for trades.

Have a good night.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Monday Jumble

Wow, I thought that Nurse Cutie cartoon was hilarious, but I guess no one else did!

Metal News
There has been some news on the gold and silver front. Interesting developments will be worth keeping an eye on. As usual I was looking for a much larger pull back in Au and Ag but they seem to be holding tight. Here are some items:
Judge Sides With GATA, Orders Fed To Present Her With Its Classified Gold Records For Private Review
I will wait to see if this really happens, but this is huge news (one way or the other).

One from Jesse:
Massive Silver Withdrawals From The Comex
Another item to keep tabs on.

Kid Dynamite has a good post on PSLV and the trading premium behind it (why?):
Silver Irony - PSLV, SLV

And of course how long was it going to be (5 minutes, a day?) until this type of thing gets ink:
Arizona Shooter’s Obsession with Returning to the Gold Standard
To be 100% fair to Mr. Mark Thoma (who I disagree with on things economic all the time, but he is a brilliant guy) he was asked to give some background on this angle by CBS Moneywatch. Still, will talk of a gold standard be outlawed next?

I am a long term bull and holder of physical gold and silver and I still believe in them long term. Short term I want to see some resolution in ugly price action (especially silver) before jumping in for more.

Are All New Life Forms about to be Discovered?
I have written about Lake Vostok a few times. From the Wiki entry:
Lake Vostok is the largest of more than 140 subglacial lakes found under the surface of Antarctica. It is located beneath Russia's Vostok Station, 4,000 metres (13,000 ft) under the surface of the central East Antarctic ice sheet. It is 250 kilometres (160 mi) long by 50 kilometres (31 mi) wide at its widest point, thus similar in size to Lake Ontario, and is divided into two deep basins by a ridge.
So this lake has been sealed off from the rest of the world for a LONG time, it is supersaturated with Oxygen, and under enormous pressure. Any microbes living there will be sure to have evolved insane anti-oxidant systems and enzymes that work in unknown ways. Why is this a big deal?

Again, natural products. Many of the best drugs (and almost all antibiotics) are natural products found to be made by plants, bacteria, fungi, etc. Here we have an untapped realm where all kinds of things are possible. This also fits in with my desire for a Pharmaceutical company to get into seawater bacteria screens for natural products. I had the chance to work at a small firm that used DNA isolated from sea soil samples (yes, there is tons of DNA in soil!) for expression studies to find new antibiotics. It was a great time. I love Pulse Field Electrophoresis.

Fellow blogger Kid Dynamite asked a bit ago why I do not spend more time going into Pharmaceuticlas/Biotech as it is my specialty after all. The reason is that I work for a top 3 Mega Pharmaceutical company and I never wanted my blogging to get entwined with my real life work. My company works with all kinds of firms and is aggressive in acquisitions so it often becomes hard to discuss various companies. I don't know about Wall Street, but the Biotech/Pharma world is very small. I had the luxury of working at a up and coming biotech in the golden years (1998-2002) of biotech and from that I know very well people in many areas in high positions spread across the industry. Legal, business, research, you name it and I probably know someone who holds that spot at many biotech/pharma firms. Of course I am always available via the email on the left to discuss generally anything a reader may want to know more about, or offer my own understanding of a company's leads or technology. Now you know.

Did You Know?
The best and most tested theorem on how the Moon came to be is that a Mars sized body collided with and early Earth. Here is some more to start:
Clouds Made of Rock Vapor Once Rained Magma on Ancient Earth

Have a good night.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Xtranormal Video with Nurse Cutie

Ok, I made one of those crazy Xtranormal videos! Let me know what you think!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

How Bizarre

Ok, I just watched a bunch of the most weird, bizarre football ever!

The Saints were a no show and even after that killed themselves on a late drive with penalties.

The Colts seemed content to play the Jets game and blew it in the end.

Does anyone play to win, or just not to lose?

Wildcard weekend was a silly day so far.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Return of the Friday

The week went by pretty well considering I was coming off a long holiday and often that will make a week back at work long indeed. All kinds of stuff to talk about tonight so here we go. I will press on even though I am guilty of many poor blog issues as per The Reformed Broker template but I am small time!

Trading Time
I have been using the iBankCoin model the PPT for this week and it has plenty of features that are great. Formerly I would screen stocks using various online tools and my eyes, but now things are much easier. One of my favorite types of screens in an uptrending market is too look for oversold stocks (technical or other) that have high institutional ownership. The theory is that big money will put more out to "defend" a stock they own a bit of. At least that's what I observe. Finding oversold stocks in this market is next to impossible of course, but you do what you can.

Two stocks came up last night and I really liked how the setups looked. I was attracted to:
EW at $78.81
NFLX at $178
I know, NFLX! I never said I was just going to buy metals! This is what is called trading, not investing or making a macro call. I had an issue with my brokerage through Bank of America buying EW but got is squared away and I was in NFLX at the the above price. I am looking for a nice bounce short term (5-7 days) that I hope will garner 10% wins on each. Not investment advice of course, I tend to suck at this stuff. I will update later on.

NFL Wild Card Weekend
The best time of the year is NFL playoff time! I love it. Here are my picks:
New Orleans Saints 34, Seattle Seahawks 20
Indianapolis Colts 27, New York Jets 24
Baltimore Ravens 23, Kansas City Chiefs 17
Green Bay Packers 31, Philadelphia Eagles 28
These are tough games to pick and foul weather in Seattle may be an issue for the Saints as well. Who knows?

Friday Night Entertainment
After a long hiatus, Friday Night has returned!

Did You Know?
-In "Return of the Jedi" Luke's lightsaber was to be blue but when shown against the desert backdrop in the film's opening fight scene on Jabba's barge, the blue blade was hard to see against the bright blue sky. Hence, the green lightsaber!
-Plants, insects, and some small mammals have an ability to find and harvest gold?
These actors turned down these roles:
-Will Smith – Turned down the role that eventually went to Keanu Reeve in “The Matrix”
-Tom Hanks – Turned down the role of Ray Kinsella in “Field of Dreams,” Andy Dufresne in “The Shawshank Redemption” and the lead role in “Jerry Maguire.”
-Keanu Reeves turned down Charlie Sheen’s role in “Platoon.”
More at the link!

Say it With Pictures
demotivational posters - WHY WORRY
see more Very Demotivational

A crushing right hand in the 13th round wins the Heavyweight title for Rocky Marciano when he was trailing on points (in 1952):

Find the video for this, it's a huge right hand!

Rock Blogging
The tunes have returned! You know you missed this!

While not the complete song (get the soundtrack already!) here is The Blasters playing "Blue Shadow" in the film "Streets of Fire" and pardon the Spanish stuff:

And yes that is Amy Madigan from "Field of Dreams".

How about The Cult with "Edie" (love the section at 2:30 to 3:06):

And no, not Edie Falco, though I used to find her hot!

Now picking a favorite Black Sabbath tune is like picking a favorite Beatles tune (except all their songs suck so bad they are all even!) but if I was pressed I am going with "Snowblind":

There are MANY close seconds however.

We have a request from my wife for tonight (thanks princess!), and so here we go with Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros and "Home":

I love you too darlin'! I like this one very much.

Ok, I am about out of time so two more to close the show!

When I took little kitty Jessie to the Vet for her wellness check, they had Cyndi Lauper's song "She Bop" on the radio and I remembered how much fun the song was:


Well, Home is where the heart is, and so let's close the show with Motley Crue and "Home Sweet Home":

Good stuff.

Have a good night.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

No One Asked Me

Hello out there!

I am still here but I have been busy with work and trying out some new things in regards to the market. A couple of quick takes for perusal.

No One Asked Me
Full disclosure: I do not have a position in the company (not a GS client) and I do not have an account. My wife has one (bejeweled blitz is an issue) and so does my pug (don't ask!).

With that out of the way here are the main Facebook users such that I can figure from real life interviews:
- 20% People with kids that post endless pictures that only they and their immediate family will care about plus a few weirdos
- 50% Men (married, single, on parole) that are looking for long lost loves, former flings, and just some action. Plus they are scanning all the pictures and doing who knows what
- 20% Women (married, single, on parole) doing the same as above
- 5% Normal people with accounts addicted to the games offered
- 4% Advertisers looking for data
- 1% Other

Indeed, amazing stuff! It is like, well, the Internet only somewhat smaller. Look, I get it. It's hot, it's smoking. Great. In 5 years all the ads will be kiddie stuff and porn. Where is the money coming from? This thing costs close to zero to run (like Google) but it is also easily replicated and may suffer first in class fatigue. Didn't everyone have a My-Space at one point?

50 Billion net worth? Why not 100 Billion? Why not make it like Apple Inc? People getting in touch with people is a novel idea after all. Otherwise you could go out and talk to people or meet up with folks. Maybe you could even meet new people in a social setting without your entire ISP and address showing up! This thing is built to last! Sorry for the snark.

What You Talking About Willis!??
When things get nuts they tend to proceed toward absolute entropy it seems. All I will submit is a Business Insider headline:
The Truth Comes Out: Paul Volcker Was Forced Out, Because The White House Is Going More "Pro Business"
Not sure how more "Pro-Business" this government can get and by that it means PRO-BANKING and we all know it and accept it like meek wounded in the basement in "The Road" waiting to be eaten but whatever.


Any more Banker, I mean Business friendly, and they will uproot all the trees around DC to make an army of Orcs and Uruk-hai to battle us for credit card fees and minimum balance transgressions. Geez.

Have a good night. And a sword by your side may come in handy!