Finance Investment - Berkeley CSUA MOTD
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Berkeley CSUA MOTD
2022/08/19 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular

2008/3/11-13 [Finance/Investment] UID:49428 Activity:nil
3/11    The next bubble: priming the markets for tomorrow's big crash
        \_ GLOBAL RECESSION! I told you so!             -recession swami
2008/3/11-13 [Science/Electric, Finance/Investment] UID:49425 Activity:moderate
3/11    Interest rate going below 0%? Is that silly or what?
        \_ yeah its silly.  Other stuff can happen that they dont mention
           in that article, especially since the circumstances look distrubingly
           like current environment.  See, for example
           in that article, especially since the circumstances look
           distrubingly like current environment.  See, for example
           disturbingly like current environment.  See, for example
2008/3/9-11 [Computer/SW/Database, Finance/Investment] UID:49395 Activity:nil 72%like:49393
3/9     Financial crisis enters "the third wave" (
        \_ This seems like a good link, but it's a bit too technical
           and too dense. Can someone please summarize for me?
           Greatly appreciate this!  -lib art major (only 600 on SAT math)
2008/3/9 [Computer/SW/Database, Finance/Investment] UID:49393 Activity:nil 72%like:49395
3/9     Financial crisis enters "the third wave"
2008/3/8-11 [Finance/Investment] UID:49390 Activity:moderate
3/8     The median household earned $48,201 in 2006, down from $49,244 in 1999,
        according to the Census Bureau.  It now looks as if a full decade
        may pass before most Americans receive a raise.
        \_ It's ok, the tech industry is immune to a recession!
           Here's a personal data: I JUST GOT A RAISE! So, there!
           I'm sure those in the construction and blue collar industry
           aren't doing so well. But if you're Berkeley educated, there's
           no reason why you should be worried about a frigging RECESSION.
        \_ proof positive they all should have bought a house in 1999 </joking>
           \_ That's no joke.  --bought in 99, doing great
              \_ Is your household income 48k?  If so, which of Idaho, Nebraska,
                 or Wisconson do you live in?
              \_ Is your household income 48k?  If so, which of Idaho,
                 Nebraska, or Wisconson do you live in?
                 \_ you might want to look up the term "median"
                    \_ You might want to look at the subject of the post.
                       \_ What about it?
2008/3/4-7 [Reference/RealEstate, Finance/Investment] UID:49335 Activity:kinda low 85%like:49333
3/4     Um, holy crap? (
        \_ (
           Insert theme from your favorite horror movie here.
           \_ Serious does this mean homes will be affordable
              again? Seriously? Man I can't wait  -bitter missed out guy
              \_ Affordable is relative.  The price of the home isn't nearly
                 as important as your monthly payment on it and how long you
                 have to pay that number.
                 \_ This makes absolute sense esp. for ppl with low IQs.
                    The rate at which home prices balloon or sink...
                    where do you take that into consideration? The
                    affordability index has been shrinking for the last
                    15 years, and given a historical cyclical market
                    isn't it prudent to wait for the other side of the
                    cycle? I mean, affordability is relative, but that
                    should not be the only factor used in such a
                    complex and expensive decision.
                 \_ And the final variable would be the interest rate. Thanks
                    for the math lesson. WTF are you trying to say?
                    \_ He's saying that if the interest rate doubles while
                       prices fall in half it doesn't make housing much more
                       affordable for people who are financing the purchase.
                       Maybe that's clear to you, but a lot of people seem
                       to overlook that the payment means more than the price
                       in many instances.
                       \_ People are supposed to save up a significant
                          downpayment, if banks are being responsible.
                          Prices should matter in the real world. In
                          fantasy bubble land where government saves the
                          day maybe it doesn't matter.
              \_ No.  This means that the shit that has been hitting the fan
                 for the last year is going to continue to hit the fan.
                 In fact, some of the shit that hit it already is going to
                 circle back for a few more wacks.
                 \_ If many homeowners are experiencing "shit hitting
                    the fan" doesn't it imply all the spectators will soon
                    be in a position to cherry pick shit soon?
                    \_ Not if the economy gets totally fucked by the housing
                       crisis.  Hence the horror movie soundtrack, etc...
                    \_ We won't hit bottom until people think real estate
                       is dead. As long as there are a lot of spectators
                       thinking they are going to cherry pick we won't get
                       there. Serious investors aren't worried about
                       predicting a bottom. They bought 20 years ago, 10
                       years ago, 5 years ago, 2 years ago, and last week
                       - but they bought what made sense to buy. Finding
                       bargains might be getting easier, but financing what
                       you find is tougher meaning that only the all-cash
                       guys (you know, the pros) can stay in.
                       \_ Yes, this is exactly true. However, SFH have been
                          mostly financed by fairy dust the last few years,
                          so they are going to have the furthest to fall. Not
                          to say that the credit crunch won't hit multi-famliy
                          and commercial real estate, I am sure it will, but
                          the valuations are not as out of whack.
        \_ I've paid my mortgage on time every month for years.  Who is going
           to 'fix' my loan so I don't have to pay so much anymore?
           \_ One word for you: SUCKER!
              \_ Obviously I should have defaulted then the gvt would have
                 rescued me from my own stupidity because clearly I would have
                 been a "victim" of a "predatory" loan.  sigh.  I need a nanny
                 state law passed to take care of me, too!
                 \_ Did you even read the article?
                    \_ Yes.  I read both links.  Did you?
                       \_ Yes. Where did you make the logical leap from a
                          voluntary agreement between a bank and a home owner
                          to a gvt bailout?
2008/3/4 [Reference/RealEstate, Finance/Investment] UID:49333 Activity:nil 85%like:49335
3/4     Um, holy crap?
2008/2/28-3/4 [Politics/Foreign/Asia/Korea, Finance/Investment] UID:49291 Activity:nil
2/28    I just found out N Korea has been printing superbills in an attempt
        to devaluate American dollars. What's scary about this is that
        the superbills are indistinguishable from real printed money.
        That is so fucked up. Damn you Kim Jong Il!
        \_ I doubt he was doing it just to devaluate US dollars.  It's not
           like he couldn't use the money.
        \_ BTW, does counterfeiting one currency have any effect on other
           currencies other than the exchange rates against the counterfeited
           \- pakistan also counterfitted INR 500Rs rupee notes.
              i think it most you can cause problem in a small area.
              like this led to Rs 500 rupee notes not being accepted in
              nepal, but not that big a problem all over.
        \_ Probably more for the desperately needed foreign goods than
           to devalue the dollar.
        \_ They should start running the African Nigerian scam with a
           N Korea twist. They can profit from dumb ass greedy Americans
           while teaching Americans a lesson.
2008/2/19-22 [Computer/SW/Security, Finance/Investment] UID:49189 Activity:nil
2/19 (
        GOOG filing warns on near-revenue growth on reduction of accidental
        \_ Wow.  I didn't know they were making money from deceiving click
           \_ the monkey wants to be clicked
2008/2/14-18 [Finance/Investment] UID:49146 Activity:kinda low
2/14    Full-time and summer internship jobs available at Bain Capital.
        Use CS to invest in stocks/bonds/commodities/etc.
        Postings at and
        \_ Isn't this Mitt Romney's company?
        \_ Can I use my CS skills to assfuck school districts for phat bonus?
           Not that there's anything wrong with that.  Survival of the fittest
           \_ does it matter?
              \_ Yes.
                 \_ Why?  Where do you work that isn't involved in some way
                    with someone you don't like?
                    \_ There are lots of places to work that don't have
                       upper management I dislike. Your argument is silly.
                       So I should work at a company run by Charles Manson
                       because where can I "work that isn't involved in
                       some way with someone [I] don't like?"
                       \_ So you're equating Charles Manson with Mitt Romney?
                          And you call me silly?  We're done here.
                          \_ I'm just taking your argument to the extreme
                             to point out how ridiculous it is. I mean,
                             I may as well work with Manson because where
                             can I work that isn't involved with someone I
                             dislike? I never equated Romney with Manson
                             other than to say I dislike them both.
2008/2/6-11 [Finance/Banking, Finance/Investment] UID:49080 Activity:nil
2/6     I want to open up a money market account, and I'm debating between
        an ING Direct acct and a ETrade one. Which one is preferable?
        Should I just go with the ETrade acct since it offers 4.4%
        interest (vs. the 3.4% offered by ING)? Thanks.
        \_ Are you worried about ETrade going belly up?
        \_ Go for Etrade, and when their rate tanks switch to another service.
           ING Direct has really low rates, I no longer use them. Make sure to
           check out other services like Emigrantdirect, GMAC, IndyMac, etc.
           I'd stick to Etrade since they're well established and their teaser
           rates (currently 4.4%) seem to last longer than any of the other
           places. Good luck and tell us what you ended up deciding!
           \_ I like GMAC because transactions post very quickly, you can
              write checks from the account, they have ATM fee reimbursements,
              and their rate is almost always quite competitive.
2022/08/19 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular

2008/2/1-6 [Academia/Berkeley/Classes, Finance/Investment] UID:49044 Activity:kinda low
2/1     Facebook finances leaked
        Losses for 2007: $50 million
        Projected losses for 2008: $150 million
        dans, over to you
        \_ bubble 2.0
           \_ Possibly.  I've never said different.  IMO it's good to be a geek
              during a tech bubble. -dans
              during a tech bubble.  Let me amend that.  It's good to be a
              geek in a tech bubble if you're not greedy. -dans
              \_ why?
        \_ Is there a point you're trying to make?  I should note that the
           figures you link to don't indicate a loss in 2007, and referring to
           figures handed to the press on a silver platter as a leak is silly.
           \_ YHBT
2008/1/30-2/2 [Finance/Investment] UID:49036 Activity:low
        S&P downgrades, sets "credit watch negative" to $534 billion in
        RMBS and CDO issues.  Boooo!
           FGIC downgraded to AA as well.
           \_ Boooo!
              \_ So the market appears to have shrugged off all the bad
                 news. Time to buy?
2008/1/25-2/2 [Transportation/Car/RoadHogs, Finance/Investment] UID:49016 Activity:moderate
1/25   "The general process of suburbanization is, the richer you are, the more
       likely you move to the suburbs," says Julie Martin, a senior demographer
       for the Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service at the University of
        \_ Why does JFK junior live in NYC?
           \_ He lives with the worms, now.
        \_ Obviously true in the DC area, obvioiusly false in most of the
           \_ Yes, because a motd anecdote is superior to a researcher at
              a university. If you look at the wealthiest areas in the US
              in terms of income they are almost all, if not all, suburbs.
              \_ No, the wealthiest areas in the US and world are in cities.
              \_ No, the wealthiest areas in the US and the world are in cities.
                 See Pac Heights, The Upper East Side, Kensington in London,
                 The First Addrosmont (sic?) in Paris, etc. In the Bay Area
                 The 7th Arrondissement in Paris, etc. In the Bay Area
                     \- dont you mean the 8e/triangle d'or. --psb
                 per capita income is as follows:
                 Marin - 44.9k
                 San Mateo - 36k
                 SF - 34.5k
                 CoCo - 30.6k
                 Alameda - 26.7k
                 \_ See, Marin is wealthier than SF.
                    \_ So is San Mateo. The data does not say what he
                       thinks it says.
                       \_ And Alameda county is really urban, not suburban and\
                          CoCo County is just an outlier. Right?
                          \_ What does that make SF besides 3rd choice?
                             \_ Does the evidence presented support or refute
                                the statement "The wealthier you are, the more
                                likely you are to live in the suburbs?" Hint:
                                what is the contrapostiive of that statement?
                                what is the contrapositive of that statement?
                                \_ There isn't enough evidence to refute
                                   anything without providing some more
                                   data like population figures. Are the
                                   numbers you gave medians or averages?
                                   What is the margin of error? Fact is
                                   the wealthiest communities in the nation
                                   are suburban, not urban. Even your
                                   stats show that.
                                   \_ It actually depends on what you mean
                                      by the word "communities" actually.
                                      Is a county synomymous with community?
                                   \_ It depends on what you mean by the
                                      word "communities." Is a county
                                      synomymous with community?
                                      \_ It can be and in most of the
                                         country it is. CA has some
                                         massive counties where it might
                                         not be true, but SF is not one of
           \_ More like, true to a certain extent based on economic migration
              patterns in cities like NYC and Detroit; tends to break down
              after a certain economic level and depends heavily on how
              attractive inner-city neighborhoods are in a given city.
           It is more complicated than that. The wealthy and the poor tend
           to both move to the suburbs, for differing reasons.
2008/1/23-31 [Finance/Investment] UID:48995 Activity:kinda low
1/23    Need retirement savings advice:  if I had the foresight to move from
        market index funds into treasuries at DJIA 14K, and put them back into
        market index funds at DJIA 12K, and not touched the fucker again until
        14K, would that have been a feasible move?
        Yeah, I know, it's like saying, "If I could have bought puts on GOOG
        at 730 and sold them now when GOOG's at 530", but it's a slightly
        different question.
        \_ Trying to time the market is very difficult, but you can always
           try. Maybe you should start out doing with some percentage of
           your retirment fund (like 1/4) and see how you do before risking
           the whole thing.
           \_ Umm, maybe he should not be doing this with retirement fund
              \_ I don't see why not, unless he is really close to retirement.
                 If he screws up and loses some small part of it (1/2 of the
                 1/4 he played with) then he has to cut back on spending a bit
                 so he can save more, or expect to work a bit longer or
                 whatever. What is sacrosanct about retirement fund money?
                 Since your risk horizon is probably longer, it actually makes
                 since to push it a bit.
                 \_ You have a point, sort of. It's not a bad idea to do all
                    your most tax-inefficient stuff in a retirement account.
                    However, you can only put so much money in these tax
                    advantaged accounts, so I don't think it's the best place
                    to fuck up. Therefore I wouldn't suggest "experimenting"
                    in a retirement account.
        \_ I don't understand your question.
           \_ If all this is in an IRA or 401(k), are there typically fees for
              transferring out of $80K invested in a market index fund and
              into treasuries, and back after 9 months, and if so, what are the
              fees typically?
        \_ Beating the market is a zero sum game.  For every dollar invested in
           the stock market that gets a 1% better than average return, another
           dollar invested in the market underperforms the average return rate
           by 1%.  Just *trying* to beat the market will cost you in
           transaction fees for each attempt at something clever.  When you're
           right, they'll cut into your returns, and when you're wrong, they'll
           increase your losses even further.  On the other hand, *matching*
           the market's average return rate is trivially easy and inexpensive
           in management fees (use an index fund).  If you're convinced that
           you're psychic, try this on paper for a while before you gamble
           with your retirement money.
           \_ about what kind of fee can I expect for a $100K move out of an
              index fund and into a treasury fund (and vice versa) let's say
              at a Fidelity managed IRA?  thanks.
              \_ It depends on the brokerage, account type, the specific funds
                 involved, and sometimes the circumstances of the transaction.
                 If you've got a specific enough transaction in mind, call your
                 broker and ask.
                 \_ yeah, but do you, or does anyone on soda happen to know
                    off-hand the typical fee for the specifics I described?
                    \_ No.  I don't have an IRA with Fidelity, and am
                       unfamiliar with their fee structure.  If I were moving
                       $100k in or out of the exchange traded index funds I've
                       been using in my Schwab brokerage (non-ira) account,
                       it would cost me about $10.  Your mileage *will* vary.
                       \_ thanks!  just wanted a rough number.  this also tells
                          me that not many sodans know this number.
                          \_ We're not your web searching lap dogs, ass wipe.
                          \_ Let me paraphrase what I just said.  "Schwab
                             charges $10 for stock trades in institutional
                             accounts."  Do you still think I've given you
                             information relevant to your situation?
                          \_ Why not call your broker and ask? We don't
                             know what *your* fees are.
           \_ this is true in general, I agree -op
        \_ We are going to see SPX 750, possibly 500.  Get out of the market
2008/1/23 [Finance/Investment] UID:48992 Activity:nil
1/23    Buy buy buy GOOG at 530!  When they announce increased market share and
        positive outlook, this stock is gonna bust out to new highs!
2008/1/21-31 [Finance/Investment] UID:48978 Activity:nil
1/21    More lame financial headlines today:  FTSE 100, DAX, CAC 40 down
        5.5 to 7%.  DJIA futures down 500pts. (jump to 1:00 minute)
                                                   \_ nah, 3:20 is better. lol!
        \_ There are some who feel like that uh if we have shitty economic
           policies it might bite us in the ass. They don't understand what
           they're talking about if that's the case. Let me finish. Um, there
           are some who feel like conditions are such that there might be a
           recession. My answer is: bring it on.
        \_ Don't daytrade (or go to Vegas) with money you dan't afford to
           lose. Good lesson to learn that early in life.
        \_ da-mn.  today's headline is:  "I sold the BOTTOM"
           \_ This guy appears to be the perfect contra indicator.
              \_ maybe it's cmlee, the Anti-Analyst!
2008/1/17-23 [Finance/Investment] UID:48964 Activity:nil
1/17    So, I'm thinking about starting up a post-tax investment account
        with individual stocks.  (In other words, I'd like to get into
        small-time stock trading to try it out.)  What's the best/cheapest
        way to do this?  E-trade? Fidelity?
        \_ Any broker is fine. I use my bank (Wells Fargo) because they
           make it easy to transfer money from checking to savings to
           brokerage account and the fees are about average.
        \_ Fun answer: has a very powerful software program
           to trade options, futures, and stocks.  They have a "paper money"
           feature where you can place virtual trades and track how you are
           doing.  Tell us how you do!
           Boring answer:  Scottrade
           \_ If you are looking for cheapest, Scottrade is pretty
              hassle-free.  Another option is Sharebuilder, which is a bit
              different in that you buy a dollar amount worth of stocks
              instead of whole stocks.  I think it can theoretically be
              used to purchase those with high per-share prices, but I have
              no experience with it.  -Scottrade customer
              \_ Supposedly tradeking is all right, and $5 is reasonably
                 cheap for trades. MB trading is okay and has quite cheap
                 trades, but don't have a web trading interface (you have
                 to use this windows program). Zecco gives you a certain
                 amount of "free" trades, which would theoretically be great
                 for DCA into ETFs or something, but I must warn you that
                 their customer service is the worst I've ever seen (or more
                 like non-existent, I guess). They dinged me with invalid
                 "margin interest" debits, and I don't even have a margin
                 account. Granted, these debits were less than the several
                 dollars worth of trades I've done there, but when I emailed
                 their customer service, I got one bullshit email response,
                 and then they just ignored the rest of them.
2008/1/16-18 [Finance/Banking, Finance/Investment] UID:48958 Activity:high
1/16    Nikkei 225 back to lows of 2001-2005 and 1986.  Dang.  I thought
        stock markets of developed countries were supposed to return more
        than a savings account over 22 years!
        \_ If you cherry pick your dates, then no it won't.  If you cherry
           pick the other way you'd be a zillionaire.
           \_ i guess we're supposed to wait 40 years?
              \_ No, you're supposed to not cherry pick the dates.  Or better
                 yet, just put your money in your piggy bank.
        \_ If you are really interested in this topic, I suggest that you
           read _Stocks_For_The_Long_Run_ by Siegel. Plenty of developed
           countries stock markets have gone all the way to zero, usually
           after they lost a war. If you held German stocks from 1933 to
           1945, you were pretty unhappy. On the other hand, if you bought
           the Nikkei back in 1950, you are still sitting on a very impressive
           gain. The Nikkei is *still* not back to where it was in 1989, so
           yes, you can cherry pick dates and demonstrate practically anything.
           Diversification and a long term view are essential for success
           investing, especially passive investing, like the stock market.
           You should not have money in stocks that you need in the next
           20 years. -ausman
        \_ Guys, conventional wisdom is that you should invest in a market
           index and hold x years, and you're virtually guaranteed to do okay.
           What is "x" for returns better than a savings account / CD / bonds?
           \_ Wrong assumption.  The stock market gives you likely better
              returns than a more conservative option like a CD, with
              a probability curve that starts at x and rises towards 100%
              over time.  -tom
              \_ Also you have to diversify to prevent being really
                 screwed when one sector/company/country tanks for 20 years.
              \_ what do you estimate the probability of a market index
                 outperforming CDs is for x = 30 years?  do you have a sweet
                 spot for x?  let's also assume we are moving from stocks
                 to bonds/safety as we get older, also as CFPs suggest.
                 to bonds/safety as we get older, as CFPs suggest.
                 \_ You could estimate this by looking at historical
                    30-year returns and seeing how many of those
                    periods resulted in returns less than 5%/year
                    average.  I expect that probability is very low, less
                    than 10%.  -tom
2008/1/9-12 [Finance/Investment] UID:48916 Activity:nil
        Median GDP growth of +1.5% for 1H08 according to 62 economists
        Fuckers GS, MER, MS predict recession in 2008
        GS says recession "will be mild by historical standards", unemployment
        at 6.5% in 2009.
        \_ Co-incidentally, MS, MER and GS partners will all see reduced bonuses
           this year. The best possibility for them to regain their fat
           paychecks is to convince the Fed to lower interest rates.
2008/1/8-11 [Finance/Investment] UID:48909 Activity:nil
1/8     Have your broker buy-buy-buy Countrywide credit default swaps!
        They now pay 26% of amount insured first year, 5% four subsequent
        years! (Reuters)
        \_ High risk, high reward
2007/12/26-2008/1/4 [Reference/RealEstate, Finance/Investment] UID:48860 Activity:moderate
12/25   Seriously dans. What is the age group of the people at your
        startup? 25? 26? Mostly unmarried and no mortgage I presume?
        \_ It's a wide range.  Yes, we have some folks who are 25 or younger,
           but we have several people who are in their early 40's and have
           families (including kids) and mortgages.  Actually, a surprising
           number of the folks under 30 own in SF. -dans
           \_ Born to money?
              \_ No, married, no kids, and both parties have near or above
                 six-figure incomes. -dans
                 \_ Did they really save $100k in five years on less than
                    $100k/yr salary? That is kind of amazing. Was this a
                    couple who bought or a single person? Even $100k/yr won't
                    get you close to the typical $1M SF home. Did they buy
                    a condo?
                    \_ 'both parties have near or above six-figure incomes'
                       So $1M is not uncommon in SF, but there are things that
                       go for less, I'd say $700K is more average, but I
                       haven't looked at prices in a while.  Some people
                       purchased condos, some people purchased in more
                       outlying districts where property values are less.
                       \_ That phrase can be interpreted in one of two ways:
                          1) two separate people each bought a home or
                          2) two people together bought a home
                          I thought you meant the latter, but I wasn't sure
                          so I clarified. $700k is average for all sales in
                          SF, condos included. SFH only is upwards of $1M,
                          but yes, you can get a place for much less in some
                          neighborhoods. I still wonder about the downpayment.
                          That is some mighty good saving, if they actually
                          did it on their own.
                   \_ I've saved more than $100K in less than 4 years, on a
                      single income of < $100K a year, with a wife and 2 kids,
                      in the Bay Area, ignoring 401K.  BWAHAHAHA!
                      \_ Congratulations. What does that mean, ignoring 401k?
                         Not including the 401k into the $100k? Even more
                         impressive! How much is your rent? Does your wife work?
                         \_ Yes, I didn't include my 401K in that total, and my
                            wife does not work.  I'm helped a lot by the fact
                            that my job is in a suburb, so I can get a 2 bed 1
                            bath duplex for $1150 a mo near my work.
        \_ Your presumption was incorrect.  Are you actually going to change
           your behavior or working set of assumptions based on this?  Or was
           this just a troll? -dans
2007/12/21-29 [Reference/Tax, Finance/Investment] UID:48849 Activity:nil
12/21   Anyone recommend a good accountant in SF? Mine moved to corporate
        accounts and dropped me -- I expect to pay $500-$1000 for tax prep
        and they need to know AMT/.com bubble stock issues.
2007/12/18-29 [Finance, Finance/Investment] UID:48831 Activity:low
12/18   Awesome juxtaposition of headlines:
        Scientists fear Arctic thaw has reached 'tipping point'
        Arctic Sea Ice Re-Freezing at Record Pace
        \_ Thank God.  Once it tips can we stop hearing about this fraud
           on working people everywhere?  TIP!  TIP!  I want to hear about
           global cooling for a few years (again).
        \_ Tipping point meaning that after thawing a while now it will freeze
        \_ Hey, global climate change skeptic:  how about buying some
           oceanfront property, maybe 2-3 feet above sea level,
           oceanfront property, and maybe 2-3 feet above sea level,
           \_ Why?  Even the worst predictions of the IPCC say I'll be fine for
              at least 100 years.
              \_ so sea level's  supposed to stay the same for 100 years and
                 suddenly jump? I don't think so...
                 \_ No, the worst predictions are 20cm rise in the next
                    century.  So all I have to do is be at 2-3 feet and I'll be
                    fine for at least 100 years by the most alarming estimate.
                    But I expect the global warming hoax to be completely gone
                    in the next 5-10 years anyway.
                    \_ Then we'll be talking about global cooling and how
                       that is a man-made problem caused by C02.
                    \_ Are you going to aplogize to us all when you are
                       proven wrong?
                    \_ Are you going to apologize to us all when (okay, if)
                       you are proven wrong?
2007/12/12-19 [Finance/Banking, Finance/Investment] UID:48788 Activity:nil
        Fed offers term auction facility to address credit freeze
        - Effective operation almost exactly like the Fed discount window:
          Banks can borrow money from the Fed at weeks to months duration
        - But at or near the fed funds target (instead of the discount rate)
        - The key feature (not discussed in the article of course) is
          Anonymity.  Only the Fed will know who it lends to using this
          facility.  Banks don't borrow from the discount window because
          it's public knowledge, telling the world that no other bank will
          lend to you so you had to go to the discount window.
        - The Fed is on the hook if the borrower goes belly-up, so it will
          decide who gets how much in loans for how much collateral
        - Starts next week for $20B and is envisioned as an ongoing program
        - Fed also lent $24B to ECB and Swiss central bank to help Europe's
          banks with SIV/CDO implosion.  Central banks also relaxing
          collateral requirements.
          \_ Expect the taxpayer to get screwed in the end.
             \_ privatize profits, socialize losses bitch!
2007/12/5-7 [Finance/Shopping, Finance/Investment] UID:48748 Activity:high
12/4    Fed's guide to save the economy (feel free to add):
        -print more money
        -lower interest rate
        \_ that sounds more like a recipe for inflation to me.
           \_ Inflation might save the economy by allowing us to pay back
              debts with cheap dollars. In fact, I think this is the idea.
              \_ Is there a less painful way to get rid of the huge debt than
                 inflating it to insignificance?
           \_ Exactly. Inflation isn't always bad from the government's
              perspective. Inflation has worked before, and it'll work again.
        -finish collapsing the dollar so we can switch to the Amero!
        - Bushonomics in action
          \_ What exactly is Bushonomics? More tax cuts? Unlikely in
             the light of the Federal deficit.
             \_ Massive deficit spending, tax cuts, more defence spending.
                Continuing to drive down the value of the dollar in hopes
                of closing the trade gap.
                \_ How are we supposed to close the trade gap when the US
                   doesn't actually produce much that the world wants to buy?
                   Start selling US properties?
                   \_ Developing countries buying US properties is an
                      interesting situation. By buying a US asset, they
                      are effectively investing in the US economy, instead
                      of their own. Buying a US asset or US services pumps
                      money into the US economy.
                      Obviously, if US stuff was cheap enough the world
                      would want to buy it. They already buy lots of our
                      big ticket items like jumbo jets, large industrial
                      equipment, etc. Most Chinese manufacturing is not
                      so specialized that you couldn't just do it here if
                      it was cost effective.
                      \_ It will never be as cost effective, because the
                         US cares more about worker rights, the
                         environment, consumer safety, and so on.
                         \_ Never is a long time.
        -Start a new war
        -Stop foreclosures by bailing out dumb asses.
2007/11/30-12/6 [Finance/Investment] UID:48718 Activity:nil
        3Q GDP +1.2% compared to second quarter (x 4 = 4.9% at annual rate)
        Corporate profits -1.2% compared to second quarter
        When GDP goes up as corporations lose money ... PROFIT!!
2007/11/27-30 [Politics/Domestic/Election, Finance/Investment] UID:48695 Activity:very high
11/26   Media lavishes attention on bogus Zogby poll showing Hillary trailing
        while ignoring reputable Gallup poll
        \_ More proof of liberal media bias.
           \_ I think you're being sarcastic, but one could make that argument
              since Hillary is probably the farthest right of the Dem
              canidates.  However, what the media really hates is a sure bet.
              A sure-win canidate reduces the drama and reportability.
        \_ Both polls are meaningless since we don't elect the POTUS in a
           general election, otherwise Gore would have won in 2000.  Only
           State by State polls matter, assuming any poll does.  Frankly, most
           of the polls survey such a tiny number of people they're all highly
           questionable.  Show me a poll of 2000+ LV's and I'll pay attention.
           \_ There is one meaningful point--much of Hillary's support is
              because of "electability".  If she's not as electable as
              previously believed, that may erode her support.
              \_ I understand that "electability" is what got Kerry nominated
              \_ I don't actually think that is true, since Edwards is clearly
                 more "electable." While it is true that Hillary supporters
                 often tout her electability, I think it is because they know
                 it is her weakest point and they are trying to pre-empt
                 Obama and Edwards' attacks on the point. FWIW, Obama is
                 probably no more electable than she is. -Edwards supporter
                \_ Why do you support Edwards?
                   \_ I agree with him on the big issues: the Iraq War, which
                      he thinks was a mistake and wants to wind down as quickly
                      as possible; healthcare, which he wants to reform and
                      ensure complete covereage, with the most comprehensive
                      plan of anyone; and campaign finance reform, where he
                      has consistenly taken a stance against the open buying
                      and selling of political favors which is what K Street
                      has become these days. He also would use the bully
                      pulpit to bring attention to the issue of widening
                      income imbalance, which no one else seems to even notice
                      or care about. I disagree with him on a few things, like
                      free trade, but those are not large enough issues for me
                      and he is not enough of a protectionist for me to be too
                      worried. I also think he has a wider appeal than any of
                      the other candidates from either party and because of this
                      might be able to correct our drift away from a dangerous
                      and unhealthy extreme partisanship that has become
                      the other candidates from either party and because of
                      this might be able to correct our drift toward a danger-
                      ous and unhealthy extreme partisanship that has become
                      endemic lately. I know I partly say this just because
                      I grew up poor and white too, and so his story resonants
                      with me, but polls bear out that he has the most support
                      from independent voters of any candidate. He also doesn't
                      poll that badly amongst Republicans, probably because of
                      his southern accent and his open declarations of faith.
                      \_ Why don't people understand that universal healthcare
                         will bankrupt this country in a way that Bush's
                         stupid war could only dream of? Any candidate
                         that advocates such a plan should be voted down
                         just as if he was advocating invading Iran.
                         \_ Why aren't all the Western Democracies bankrupt
                            then? Why don't people understand that nationalized
                            healthcare has worked and saved the overall economy
                            vastly in every place that it has been tried?
                            \_ 1. The US pays their (expensive) defense
                                  bills for them.
                               2. They will be bankrupt soon enough.
                               \_ Point 1 really means the American tax payer
                                  pays for their defense.  We also pay for
                                  their health care to a large degree because
                                  their governments hold down the price of
                                  drugs artificially.
                                  \_ Don't kid yourself. What percentage of
                                     health care is drug costs?
                                     \_ A lot.  You tell me otherwise.  How
                                        much was the drug bill they passed
                                        a year or two ago?  How much will it
                                        balloon up in 10-20 years?
                                        \_ Spending on perscription drugs is
                                           less than 10% of the overall
                                           national cost of health care.
                                           This is not a large proportion.
                                           It will grow unless we do something
                                           drastic, like nationalize health
                                           care spending though, you are right
                               \_ Sure they will. Conservatives have been
                                  saying that about Sweden for at least 60
                                  years now and in that time, they have
                                  actually been closing the gap with America
                                  economically. This is an interesting time
                                  to claim that anyone else is going "bankrupt"
                                  \_ People always point to Sweden. How
                                     about Germany, Japan, and France?
                                     Here's a good article about France:
                                     \_ Sweden has the highest tax rate.
                                        Similar arguments can be made for
                                        Germany and France, though. Japan
                                        actually has a lower tax rate than
                                        the US.
                                     \_ Sweden has the highest oveall tax
                                        burden. You can make the same general
                                        arguement for most of Europe: the
                                        argument for most of Europe: the
                                        economy is doing just fine, in spite of
                                        decades of Conservative insistence that
                                        the mixed model cannot possibly work.
                                        Their per capita income has actually
                                        closed with the US over any period
                                        in the past you care to measure it for.
                                        France is kind of a basket case, but it
                                        has been for a long time. Japan
                                        actually has a relatively low overall
                                        tax burden, slightly lower than the US.
                                  \_ You should ask the Swedes what they think
                                     about the way Sweden runs things.
                                     \_ It's a Democracy, right?
                                     \_ It's a democracy, isn't it?
                                        \_ If you think democratic government
                                           implies satisfaction with the
                                           government, politicians, policy, or
                                           the way the country is going you are
                                           breathtakingly retarded.
                                           \_ argumentum ad hominem
                     \_ What do you think should be done about income
                        \_ Tax the rich til they aint rich no more!
                           \_ Have any actual constructive suggestions?
                              \_ That was it.
                        \_ Spend more on education and job retraining,
                           especially for people displace by globalization.
                           Repair our badly neglected infrastructure, which
                           should employ lots of people and fix some of
                           our transportation issues at the same time.
                           What ideas do you have?
                           \_ The domestic income gap is related to global
                              income gaps and thus ties in to trade issues
                              and currency issues.
                              When you have "jobs Americans won't do" the
                              system is broken. To reduce the income gap you
                              have to either raise the floor or lower the
                              ceiling. Lowering the ceiling seems backwards
                              to me. To raise the floor you have to protect
                              "lower level" jobs to some extent, protect the
                              value of human labor vs. global competition.
                              \_ See, you are a protectionist, too! I am not
                                 fundamentally disagreeing with you, but I
                                 don't think it is very easy, or perhaps not
                                 even really possible to "protect" these
                                 lower skill jobs without screwing up your
                                 economy in the long run. How would you propose
                                 doing it? Tariffs? Closing the border? Trying
                                 to impose labor or environmental standards on
                                 our trading partners? All of these are
                                 problamatic, for different reasons.
                                \_ Well I'm not really advocating
                                   protectionism, but that is what I see it
                                   amounting to if you see imbalance as a big
                                   problem. It's not something I've ever really
                                   been concerned about.
                                   I think we should end guest worker programs.
                                   It does not help Americans. It's a form of
                                   subsidy and protectionism for inefficient
                                   uses of resources. I'm not a fan of H1B
                                   either. We need to invest in our own people,
                                   not bring in foreign workers, unless those
                                   workers are truly unique. H1Bs to do
                                   low-level interchangeable tech work is bad.
                                   letting skilled workers move here
                                   permanently is ok by me but only at a
                                   controlled rate.
                                   We need to let market forces work to find
                                   the proper use of our own workers in our
                                   own land.
                                   For trade though, labor and environmental
                                   standards have to be part of the equation.
                                   Ethical standards can't be allowed to affect
                                   competitive advantage. I think China has a
                                   natural competitive advantage in mfg'ing
                                   in its labor supply, but tax and currency
                                   issues can still hurt us.
                                   issues can still hurt us. I think our
                                   national monetary policy and debt and
                                   inflation issues hurt low-income workers
                                   around the world and contributes to
                                   global income disparity.
                                   \_ I would like you to explain your last
                                      sentence, because I don't see it. How
                                      does our monetary, debt and inflation
                                      policy hurt low-income workers around
                                      the world?
           Inflation causes rise in asset prices without corresponding wage _/
           increases. Since the world economy is historically dollar-driven,
           as dollar-denominated assets such as oil rise in value, poor
           workers lose. They have the least assets. US policy of massive
           deficit spending and monetary supply increases has broad effects
           on the world economy. Dollar inflation cancels out real wage
           value increases for economies dependent on the dollar.
           Here are some articles:
           The author of the second article has tons of other articles,
           all very long and rambling. Have fun.
           all very long and rambling. In that one he eventually talks about
           Hitler. Have fun.
           Honestly though I'm in way over my head with this economics stuff.
           (Unfortunately I get the feeling that most of our politicians are
           even more so.)
           \_ That Asia Times article is really long and mostly disjointed.
              It reminds me a lot of some of Lyndon LaRouche's stuff.
              Have you actually read it? The Ron Paul thing was amusing, but
              mostly wrong or irrelevant. I don't think inflation has the
              effect that you seem to think that it has. The big losers in
              an inflationary environment are people who depend on fixed
              income investments, like retirees. The working poor don't feel
              too much effect, since their paychecks are going up with prices
              in a truly inflationary environment. What we are seeing now is
              not really inflation, but a redistribution of purchasing power.
              This is painful to the US, but probably feels pretty good to
              \_ I at least skimmed most of it. What exactly is wrong
                 in the Ron Paul speech?
                 China has its own income imbalance problem. I don't know if
                 average Chinese feels that great earning a couple bucks a day,
                 producing crap for Americans, with inflation in prices to
                 offset their wage gains. But I don't know, if overall they
                 are gaining real purchasing power then that's good...
                 Real inflation is higher than the official inflation figures.
                 Look at the costs of: education, medical care, drugs, energy
                 over the last couple decades. Wages for the lowest level jobs
                 have not grown much if at all. Food prices are on the rise
                 here and in China.
                 Inflation hits the poor and middle class much more than the
                 wealthy. Their savings are depreciated and the low wages
                 don't keep pace, and they don't have valuable assets.
                 \_ We are not in any kind of inflationary environment. If
                    we were, wages would be going up as well as prices, that
                    is what I keep telling you. Some things have gone up in
                    price, but many things are going down, like just about
                    anything that can be built in China. Real purchasing power
                    for urban Chinese has been going up very fast, but the
                    rural farmers are being left behind. A discussion of what
                    is wrong with the Gold Standard would require a new
                    topic, I am not going to go into it here. Inflation
                    has winners and losers, to be sure, but you can't just
                    make the blanket statement that it hurts the poor more
                    than the rich. Economically, it is actually the opposite
                    of that, because the poor have no assets to lose, while
                    many rich become poor (okay, usually middle class) in an
                    inflationary environment. Things like bonds get killed in
                    inflation. Stocks do poorly as well. Some kinds of hard
                    assets (like land) hold up well, but that is not how most
                    rich people hold their wealth anymore.
                   \_ Do you really think there is no inflation? I think we're
                      done here as you're just making contrary assertions and
                      this thread is gigantic.
                      \_ Do you want me to point you to any of the official
                         or unofficial statistics from the experts who measure
                         inflation? Inflation is low by any reasonable standard,
                         certainly lower than 5%/yr and probably about what
                         the BLS states as official inflation at ~2.5%/yr. I
                         don't think there is *no* inflation, but I think it
                         is very low and you haven't presented any evidence
                         otherwise, other than some anecdotal evidence. You are
                         the one making the unusual claim, you need to provide
                         proof of it. Wages have been going up less than prices,
                         but that is not the definition of "inflation."
                         I think you are just confused about what the term
                         \_ I'm kinda too busy today to look up stuff for you
                            or talk about this more. Try googling for inflation
                            articles. Official government inflation figures are
                            not necessary reflective of real world inflation.
                            Inflation also doesn't act equally on all prices
                            and wages due to the nature of how the money supply
                            works. You also haven't pointed out any specific
                            error in the Ron Paul thing which I'd be interested
                            in. Also, look up inflation in China for example.
                            \_ Dude, I read The Economist every week. You are
                               simply speculating. Real inflation might be a
                               small amount more than reported inflation, but
                               not by much, at least not over the whole
                               economy. Ron Paul's desire to go back to the
                               Gold Standard marks him as a total fruitcake:
                               you lose control over your monetary policy in
                               such a monetary regime and would kill economic
                               growth to boot. No serious economist advocates
                               such a regime and would kill economic growth
                               to boot. No serious economist advocates
                               it, only a bunch of loons. I told you that
                               discussion is waaay to long and involved to go
                               into as an aside, but since you asked...
                              \_ Our monetary policy was primarily used to
                                 allow massive government debt and price
                                 bubbles. I fail to see how the current
                                 situation is good in the long run.
                                 Consumer debt is also the highest ever.
                                 The US economy grew just fine before the
                                 current system.
                                 I also don't accept the "no serious expert"
                                 line of reasoning.
                                 The modern system is to conduct monetary
                                 policy as if no recession can ever be allowed
                                 to occur. But the reality is that this policy
                                 is financed by endless expansion of debt and
                                 inflation. Instead of natural corrective
                                 recessions we are building up to some kind
                                 of major crisis. It's like over-aggressive
                                 fire prevention policy that ends up creating
                                 a giant inferno when the forest gets too dry.
                                 \_ Gloom and doomers are always with us.
                                    We used to have much worse downturns, like
                                    the Great Depression, the Panic of 1983 and
                                    the Panic of 1837, before we went off the
                                    Gold Standard. Only people with a serious
                                    misunderstanding of history and economics
                                    like Ron Paul want to bring back the
                                    "good ole days" of 20%+ unemployment.
                                  \_ The gold standard didn't cause the great
                                     depression. It was irresponsible fiscal
                                     policy. The central bank still has a lot
                                     of power to affect money supply with a
                                     gold standard. Prior to the Great
                                     Depression in the 20's the Fed allowed
                                     credit to grow beyond what could be
                                     supported by reserves, much like the
                                     mortgage crisis today. Result was the
                                     the stock price bubble. When that crashed,
                                     stock price bubble. When that crashed,
                                     it also failed to act. The UK left the
                                     gold standard in 1931, but it had already
                                     been abandoned in WWI. The conditions
                                     leading to the great depression and how
                                     it was dealt with can't be chalked up
                                     to the use of the gold standard.
                        Has any candidate taken a stance for the open buying
                        and selling of political favors?
                        \_ Open?  Sure.  Behind closed doors in smokey
                           rooms?  Not a chance.
                           \_ I'm not sure you parsed my question properly.
                              \_ Uhm, maybe not.
                        \_ Clinton takes a lot of lobbyist money. Edwards
                           does not.
                           \_ I don't particularly like Clinton so I'm focusing
                              on Obama vs. Edwards. I'm personally a
                              conservative-leaning independent. Obama seems to
                              be in a better position to beat Hillary in the
                              primary. Have you considered that in your
                              electability calculations?
                              \_ I don't have any particular reason to
                                 dislike Obama and I actually think he is
                                 a pretty swell guy. I think he is less likely
                                 to win in Nov, but I would certainly vote
                                 for him against any GOP candidate I can
                                 imagine. -Edwards' supporter
                              \_ I think that Edwards has a better chance in
                                 the general election, but I would gladly
                                 vote for either Edwards or Obama. -ES
                        It seems to me that Obama has done more in this area
                        than Edwards.
                        Obama had the wisdom not to authorize the Iraq war in
                        the first place.
                        Free trade is a mostly meaningless term to me. I
                        support it on textbook principle but the real world
                        isn't so simple.
                        \_ Obama didn't vote on the Iraq War as he was in
                           the Illinois State Senate at the time, I believe.
                           \_ Yeah. He spoke out against it in 2002 though:
        \_ "By contrast, I can't find a single example of any reporter or
            commentator on the major networks or news outlets referring to the
            Gallup poll at all, with the lone exception of UPI." Wait, I
            thought UPI was the untrustworthy one with no original reporting?
        \_ The Zogby poll was an internet poll?  Was the number 1 canidate
           Ron Paul?
2007/11/20-26 [Finance, Finance/Investment] UID:48669 Activity:nil
11/20   Sowell explains why most income disparity statistics are bunk.
        \_ If by "explains" you means waves his arms wildly and says
           absoultly nothing, then yes.
        \_ He is confusing income disparity with class mobility.
           \_ Classes aren't mentioned. -not op
              \_ Just because he didn't use the word, doesn't mean that is
                 not what he was referring to. What do you call all his
                 dicussion about people moving from one tax bracket to another?
                 \_ He's talking about income mobility, not class mobility. -pp
                    \_ Explain what the difference is, please.
                       \_ still waiting for an answer here.. not that I really
                          expected a coherent one from a guy who read this
                          expected a coherent one from a guy who reads this
                          kind of crap, but still...
2007/11/19-26 [Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Finance/Investment] UID:48662 Activity:nil
11/19   Are all charities "equivalent"? If I donate $100,000 to the
        Metropolitan Opera House to encourage aspiring young musicians most
        who will never make it in their lifetime, will I be more/less
        impactful than donating $100,000 to help the poor in Africa?
        \_ That depends on who you ask. A libertarian will say both are
           equivalent as there's no moral judgements on people. A
           socialist will think you're a total asshole. A capitalist
           will point out that you're an idiot for not donating to
           an organization that will somehow benefit you [in]directly.
        \_ Is this a troll?  If not, your best bang/buck on charity is
           probably subsidizing childhood immunizations.
           \_ unless you're against over-population
              \_ When you find your humanity again, feel free to join the
                 rest of the human race.
                 \_ When you stop making assumptions about people because you
                    mis-interpreted a comment, feel free to join the rest of
                    literate adults.
        \_ I'm too lazy to think about these issues.  So when I want to donate,
           I just donate to the American Red Cross, and then close my eyes and
           let them do whatever they want with the money.
        \_ What sort of impact do you want your donation to have?  If you find
           helping aspiring musicians more important than helping the poor in
           Africa, then that is more impactful.  As far as Africa goes, the
           best thing the West can do for them is stop flooding the place with
           freebies.  How does anyone expect a local economy to grow in any
           place that gets free throw aways of everything from the West?  Who
           would buy shoes from the local shoe maker when the US/UN/EU is
           giving them away free down the street?
           \- for an unbelievable story, see:
2007/11/14-17 [Finance/Investment] UID:48634 Activity:nil
11/14   Is it acceptable to think of Market Cap as "How much investors
        have put up in the stock?"
        \_ No.
2007/11/12-16 [Finance/Investment] UID:48606 Activity:nil
11/12   So do I need to worry about the money in my E*Trade account?
        \_ What's wrong with ETrade?
           \_ Fall down, go boom.
        \_ If your money in your E*Trade account is on E*Trade stocks or
           E*Trade mutual funds, yes.  Otherwise, probably no.
        \_ If your money in your E*Trade account is investment on E*Trade,
           yes.  Otherwise, probably no, because SIPC backs it up.
           \_ How much does SIPC insure?
2007/11/11-15 [Finance/Investment] UID:48604 Activity:nil Cat_by:ausman
11/11   The Nikkei 225 is taking a beating.  Save us Ben Bernanke, you're our
        only hope!
        \_ bah. an automobile has over 10000 components and Bernake is
           just one little gear.
        \_ bah. An engine has over 1000 components, and Bernake is just
           one component out of many.
           \_ I think he's more like the nut behind the wheel.
        \_ What is Ben supposed to do for a foreign stock market?
2007/11/7-14 [Finance/Investment] UID:48568 Activity:low
11/7    Poll: Do you think corporate chief executive kick-backs, benefits,
        and packages should be more closely watched and/or regulated for
        better accountability to the small time, long tail share-holders,
        or do you think it is fine the way it is? Mark D if you're a
        Democrat, R if you're a Republican, L if you're a libertarian...
        Regulation: D
        \_ The phrasing of this is so stupidly biased as to be useless.
           Also, there's kind of a wide range between regulation and
           no regulation whatsoever (which seems to be what you mean by
           'Free-Market').  Also: who cares? -dans
        \_ I think we should regulate the movie and sports industries to insure
           that no actor, director, sports star, etc. gets an unfair wage.
           Social Justice!
        \_ I just want a multi hundred million kiss off package for destroying
           a company.  Where's that option on the poll?
        \_ If you want to see the Free Market in action, go down to Baja for
           a couple of days. The Haves have lovely hotels and license to do
           whatever they want. The Have Nots are pimping their sisters in
           order to get into the Have category. And there's trash and sewage
           \_ Yes, because Mexico's economy is the closest example to a
              free market economy in the world.
              \_ What is the best example? Congo?
           \_ That's more of a plutocracy.  Or criminalocracy.
2007/11/2-4 [Finance/Investment] UID:48523 Activity:kinda low
11/2    Who will hit $1000 first, GOOG or gold?
        \_ Interesting question.  I would guess GOOG just because stock
           prices are more elastic than metals prices.  But I think it
           depends on the state of the economy.  If the economy falters
           and the Fed cuts rates a few more times, you could see
           the stock market take a correction and gold shoot up.  If the
           economy keeps moving I'd expect the gold spike to diminish.  -tom
           \_ You are pushing it using "elastic" here.  Maybe varaiance.
        \_ Irrationality drives up prices, and GOOG attracts as many
           irrational investors as did dot-com stocks. So my bet will
           be GOOG based on the history of irrationality (e.g. it can't
           possibly happen, people are idiots, ergo, it will happen)
           \_ Gold also attracts a lot of irrational investors.
              \_ The radio told me it can only go up.  I shorted GOOG so I
                 could buy gold.
        \_ Oil.
2007/11/1-2 [Finance/Investment] UID:48508 Activity:nil
        C with potential $30bn capital shortfall.  Heads of structured credit
        and CDO groups fired.  Tangible capital ratio at 2.8%.  Outlook poor
        as MBS/CDO positions deteriorate.,1,699259,full.story
        C takes over $400-million pension fund
2007/10/31-11/2 [Finance/Investment] UID:48501 Activity:nil
        Yay, AA-rated securities rated 48 cents on the dollar!
        \_ Housing, it only goes up!
        \_ Why didn't anyone warn us that this would happen?
           \_ ObSwamiSux
2007/10/31-11/2 [Finance/Investment] UID:48497 Activity:kinda low
10/31   Bought a bunch of GOOG at ~$450. Sold 1/2 at around $650. I'm
        thinking of dumping 1/2 again (1/4 of original). What do you
        guys think? Are you holding on or what?
        \_ I bought at $300 and sold at $550, but only because my wife
           wanted a kitchen remodel. In general, I think buy and hold
           is the best solution, though I will often do as you do and
           sell half after a significant runup. If I was still holding
           GOOG, I would have sold half at $600 and be keeping the rest.
           \_ Ok so let's say you sold 1/2 at $600, how much higher would
              it have to be before you decided to sell another 1/2?
              \_ I use trailing stops, so it would have to hit my stop. I
                 would never sell a stock just because it has gone up "too
                 much." I have learned the hard way that this is a bad idea.
                 In a stock that had gone up that much, my trailing stock
                 would be waaay back there, like 25% below where it is now.
                 Ideally, I would want to hold it until retirement. I can
                 give you a list of stocks that I am currently holding
                 that have gone up 200% or more that I will probably never
                 sell. I can also give you a list of stocks that I sold
                 too soon because I thought they had already gone up
                 \_ I thought about this some more and decided that
                    my best advice is for you is to come up with
                    some guidelines for yourself that determine when
                    you should buy and sell (before you buy) and stick
                    to those rules. Change the rules on the basis of
                    what you learn over time. You first need to decide
                    why you are investing and if the answer is just
                    "try to make money fast" then the stockmarket is
                    possibly not the right venue for that.
        \_ I bought at $450 and am holding pending a significant change
           in the business or the environment.  -tom
           \_ Of course, the problem here is if there is a significant change,
              all the brokers will be able to sell faster than you and the
              price will drop before you can sell.  I've read that you get
              within 20% of what you think the max should be you're doing great
              \_ I'm not trying to time the market; I'm staying invested in
                 a company with good revenues, earnings, and growth potential.
                 You are correct that if Google misses significantly on
                 earnings, the stock will go down.  20% would be a drop of
                 140 points; I'm pretty sure I would manage to sell if there
                 were a fundamental change, before Google drops 140 points.
        \_ I'm generally a buy and hold guy, but this is an unusual case.  It
           really depends on what you think.  Are you a "The sky is the limit"
           GOOG guy, or are you a "Tech Bubble 2.0" guy?  If you're the former,
           hold on.  If you're the latter, sell it all and count your money.
           It's already been a great investment, I think you could sell with
           out regret. But I'm a "Tech Bubble 2.0" guy.
           \_ One thing about "Tech Bubble 2.0"; it may be.  But I own AMZN
              from Tech Bubble 1.0, and it's up 171%.  Good companies will
              provide good returns.  -tom
              \_ but there is a distinction between a good company and a
                 good stock. GOOG is beginning to act like IOMG. -daveh
                 \_ I see no parallel at all between Google and Iomega.
                    What are you comparing?  -tom
        \_ (Seeking Alpha)
           GOOG now fifth largest company by market cap. But it would have
           to be $1500/share to be larger than XOM... Go GOOG Go!
2007/10/31-11/2 [Finance/Investment] UID:48495 Activity:nil
10/31   Can someone please explain to me why the Fed is about to cut rates
        again when:
        1) The dow is only slightly off it's all time high.
        2) Oil is at or above $90.
        3) The dollar is going off a cliff.
        4) GDP grew 3.9% in the 3rd quarter.
        5) P&G and Colgate are announcing big price increases.
        \_ Credit is very tight right now.  They can increase the money supply
           by printing dollars, or decreasing rates.  I personally hope they
           keep it tight until all the bad loans fall out.
           \_ I agree, flush out all the bad apples, start with a clean slate
        \_ Unemployment is up, GDP growth over the last year has been 1.8%,
           which is well below what the economy should be able to perform,
           and "core" inflation is low. The weak dollar might even be thought
           to be a positive, because it is contributing to economic growth
           and helping to solve the trade deficit. Overall, I think the Fed
           is worried about a recession (which they should be, imo).
        \_ ... and, USG thinks there won't be significant capital flight even
           with continued rate cuts and hits on the dollar--that U.S. markets
           will be perceived as a deteriorating, but performing investment.
           USG will slow rate cuts / tighten if this becomes less true.
2007/10/26-29 [Science/GlobalWarming, Finance/Investment] UID:48456 Activity:nil
10/26   Dear oil man, which oil stocks are good to buy now? Thanks.
        \_ DUG
        \_ I'd avoid oil stocks because the Dems are going to win 2008
           and with them will come socialist programs and
           strict energy regulations.
        \_ IXC is a safe bet, but I am holding XOM, BP and CVX. Any
           big major is probably a good bet.
2007/10/26-29 [Finance/Investment] UID:48452 Activity:low
        Insider trading "appears to be rampant" in finance industry, says
        SEC enforcement director
        \_ The Invisble Hand will take care of this.
           \_ Jail works better.
2007/10/21-24 [Industry/Startup, Finance/Investment] UID:48403 Activity:kinda low
10/20   If company X has open trading window for their employees tomorrow
        and stock X has been as high as ever, then traditionally, would
        their employees most likely start dumping stock X, making a good
        time for bozos like us to short X?
        \_ When bozos short stocks they're usually wrong.  Short a stock
           because you don't believe in the company, not because you think
           you see some technical factor.  -tom
           \_ You can totally believe in a company and yet it is too expensive.
              \_ That is usually a bad candidate for a short.
                 \_ Exactly.  Do you really think you can predict the moment
                    at which the market is going to turn?  Here's a rule
                    of thumb for you: Don't short good companies.  There
                    are plenty of bad companies out there to short, if that's
                    what you want to do.  -tom
                    \_ Bad companies are usually valued like they should be.
                       Good/bad shouldn't enter into it. Just valuation.
                       Valuation is not a "technical factor".
           \_ Or don't believe in the sector, like housing stocks at the
              end of the housing boom.
              \_ Good point here. Plenty of good companies tank if their
                 sector tanks.
2007/10/19-24 [Science/Disaster, Finance/Investment] UID:48382 Activity:nil
10/19   "Oil jumps over $90 a barrel"
        \_ Bushonomics.
           \_ Reaganomics.
        \_ Dogonomics.
2007/10/11-15 [Finance/Investment] UID:48290 Activity:nil
10/11   wtf is happening with the Dow index?
        \_ It is going up and down as it always has been.  What about it?
           \_ cliff
              \_ What about it?
                 \_ wtf is happening
                    \_ It is going up and down as it always has been.  What
                       about it?
                       \_ stack out of memory
              \_ Stock up on gold and ammo! Head for the hills!
              \_ norm
2007/9/20-22 [Finance/Investment] UID:48132 Activity:kinda low
9/20    So, with the dollar tanking where should I put my money to weather
        the comming storm?
        \_ 'In the longer term, the U.S. dollar will have to rebound at some
            point, said Dustin Reid, senior foreign exchange strategist at ABN
            AMRO in Chicago. "It can't continue into oblivion forever."'
            -- (Reuters)
        \_ You are too late. Dollar has already tanked. Buy low, sell high.
         \_ Jim Cramer be damned, I suspect that the tankage has farther to
            go, and that it's not too late.  So, if you knew the dollar was
            going to continue to tank, what (besides foreign currencies
            directly) would you invest in?
            \_ Stocks and mutual funds of foreign companies whose currency
               will do well against the dollar. Truthfully, though, these
               have outperformed and I think you are too late. But if you
               think you are not late to the party that everyone else has
               been at for years then, yeah.
        \_ Jim Cramer says you are not too late.  the stock market is going to
           14,500 by end of year.  buy-buy-buy!
        \_ obWhyDoYouHateAmerica?
        \_ I put my money into both American and foreign investments.  Why
           place your bets for/against a single currency?  You wouldn't put
           all your money into a single stock.
           \_ while i dont disagree with you, the analogy of single currency
              and single stock misses something slightly when the single
              currency is the dollar and you are long in the dollar.
        \_ Megacap companies that make most of their profits overseas
           are probably a good bet.
2007/9/18-22 [Finance/Banking, Finance/Investment] UID:48103 Activity:low
9/18    So, the lesson of the fed rate cut is: borrow as much as you can, get
        way over your head, make risky investments as well. make big bucks on
        the way up. if you get into trouble, the Fed will bail you out. if
        you're a saver you're a sucker... your life savings just took a hit
        through dollar devaluation.
        \_ If you are a saver you ALWAYS take a hit through dollar devaluation
        \_ I've been busy the last few days... I thought they were going to
           let everyone bite it.  What sort of bailout did the Fed do?
           \- "If you owe your bank a hundred pounds, you have a problem.
               But if you owe your bank a million pounds, it has." --jmk
               BTW, this is an example of why taxes should be progressive.
               \_ It's amusing that you jump on progressive taxation to remedy
                  this particular problem rather than, you know, eliminating
                  bailouts.  -- ilyas
                  \- progressive taxation isnt a solution to this.
                     this is an illustration of the fallacy of some of
                     the "how should we split the dinner bill" type bogus
                     \_ The best argument for progressive taxation I know is
                        that marginal benefit increases exponentially, but
                        hedonic value increases logarithmically (if that),
                        for money. -- ilyas
        \_ Investors and risk takers will always do better than nervous
           nellies.  You would rather the whole economy suffered a recession?
           \_ They're not taking risks if the government bails them out.  And
              considering that the only reason the economy is in danger of
              suffering a recession is *because* of this kind of risk taking,
              it shouldn't be encouraged.  -tom
              \_ I think you'd have a hard time substantiating your last
           \_ Investors, probably, risk takers? That's ridiculous. The kind
              of fevered speculation that goes on in these "booms" is not
              sound business and should not be encouraged. But unless those
              who do this feel pain, it won't stop. And it does endanger the
              economy. The "lemming" mentality should not provide safety
              from stupidity.
              \_ Yeah, I don't approve of fevered speculation and lemming
                 mentality either. Feel better?
2007/9/12 [Finance/Investment] UID:48041 Activity:very high
9/12    REDMOND, Wash., and Santa Clara, Calif. — Sept. 12, 2007 —
        Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq “MSFT”) and Sun Microsystems
        Inc. (Nasdaq “JAVA”) today announced that Sun has signed on as
        a Windows Server® OEM.
        \_ If you're gonna cut and paste, please get rid of funky chars.
           It is pretty annoying.
              \_ works for me.  turn on UNICODE.
2007/9/11-13 [Finance/Investment, Reference/RealEstate] UID:48011 Activity:nil
        "I'm leaving him," she said. "He's grouchy all the time. I want a
        guy who's rich and cheerful all day and all night. Why should I
        have to suffer because his business is bad?"
        Are any of you losing wives over the whole housing bubble popping?
        \_ Hi, I'm Ben Stein and watch me try and claim that the housing
           bubble is going to turn around any day now, but do so in a way
           that if it doesn't I can pretend I wasn't saying that.
           God damn that man is such a wanker.
           \- "I won the John Bates Clark Medal. You, sir, are
              a game show host." ... BEEN STEIN is not just a pud,
              but may actually be semi-insane. This is well worth reading:
           \_ Hi, I'm a motd troll.  Watch me make fun of an article I haven't
              read, poorly.  Did I fool you?
              \_ Dude, in that article he tries to play it both ways so bad
                 it isn't even funny.
                 \_ "Six years."
                 \_ Why do you take it so seriously? It's obviously not a
                   "here are my weighty predictions" article. It's just
                   some dumb fluff piece.
                   \_ Look, it's just a dumb fluff piece so I can take
                      both positions.  See, just a dumb fluff piece.
                      Of course after everything goes down I can
                      point to the parts that were right and forget all
                      the fluffyness.  If things go totally haywire and
                      neither X nor Y happen I can just shrug and say
                      it was a dumb fluff piece.  This is exactly why
                      I think The Daily Show shouldn't get a pass for
                      being on Comedy Central.
                      \_ Uh, when have people pointed to the Daily Show
                         in a serious way? I don't see how anyone could
                         point to this article here in a serious way
                         \- Jon Stewart doesnt claim to be a lawyer &&
                            economist && journalist && philosopher, seek
                            affiliation with think tanks which lobby to
                            change public policy etc. BSTEIN allegedly
                            was #1 in his class at yale law, so ostenisibly
                            he at some point was a smart guy. but he says
                            so many whack things, that why i think you need
                            some theory ot explain his brain snapping or
                            being disingenuous etc [like ann coulter clearly
                            says some things so she becomes a media story->
                            free advertising].
2007/9/7 [Politics/Foreign/Asia/China, Finance/Investment] UID:47948 Activity:high 66%like:47941
9/7     I can repost just as much as you can delete.
        Is China Quietly Dumping US Securities?
2007/9/7 [Politics/Foreign/Asia/China, Finance/Investment] UID:47941 Activity:nil 66%like:47948
9/7     Is China Quietly Dumping US Securities?
2007/9/7-10 [Finance/Investment] UID:47932 Activity:low
9/7     You know how they say stocks always outperform everything else over
        30 years?  We may now be entering that period where it underperforms
        for several years.
        \_ What will it underperform? Real estate?
           \_ bonds, CDs - assuming you bought them three months ago
              \_ Heck, if I can go back in time, why not just buy winning
                 lottery tickets?
                 \_ hey, you asked me about historical performance
                    \_ "...will it..." What part of that sentence is past tense?
                       \_ okay fine.  why don't we just say CDs may outperform
                          stocks from the present time.
                          \_ They might, but I doubt it. What do you think?
                             I am about 20% in muni bonds and 5% in CDs, but
                             the rest is in the market.
              \_ The bond market is not looking too good right now. All
                 analysts say blue chips are the place to be. They are
                 historically cheap.
                 \_ is it time yet to buy buy buy?
                    \_ Not as good as a year ago (when they were even
                       cheaper) but still good, yes.
                       \_ That is what I think, too. -pp
        \_ You can make more money in the slave trade.  Just join the UN.
2007/8/24-27 [Finance/Investment] UID:47742 Activity:low
8/24    Home Sales Rise, Factory Orders Up
        \_ Bubble!  I read it on the motd.
           \_ Must be true.
2007/8/21-23 [Finance/Investment, Reference/RealEstate] UID:47695 Activity:moderate
8/21    Still believe there is no housing bubble?
        "The entire Central Valley of California(and, in fact, the entire State,
        with a very few exceptions) is in the worst real estate downturn in
        my 30+ year career.
        THERE, I'VE SAID IT!"
        \_ And she doesn't have an agenda does she?
        \_ If there's anyone who doesn't believe there's a housing bubble,
           please post here and sign it so we can laugh at you. -dans
        \_ I believe this woman has pretty little credability.
           \_ While I agree with you on this point, I still think folks who
              believes there is no housing bubble should post their names on
              the motd so we can laugh at them. -dans
              \_ I never said there was no bubble, I just think this woman
                 is a moron who is trying to make money off of fear.
                 \_ I never claimed you did. -dans
              \_ I don't recall any sodan ever denying there was a housing
                 bubble - just ridicule about timing, poor logic, hyperbole,
              \_ What does "housing bubble" mean?  What are you predicting
                 as a result of this supposed housing bubble?
                 \_ did you have sexual relations with that woman, Ms.
        \_ Who here said there was no housing bubble?  Prices go up, prices
           go down.  Things change over time.  Sometimes they change fast.
           This is how the business cycle works.  And I still don't understand
           why you or anyone else would be hoping and praying or gloating over
           a potential fall in housing pricing.  All that means is the whole
           economy gets dragged down, interest rates rise, etc, and you still
           won't be able to buy a house.
2007/8/16-20 [Finance/Investment] UID:47627 Activity:kinda low
8/16    We have a correction!  Dow is now 10% below the 14K high.
        \_ no we don't
           \_ The finance industry says it's the technical definition of
           \_ Wall Street says it meets the technical definition of
              a correction.
              \_ it is a correction if you say the 10% can be calculated off
                 the low value for the day
                 it isn't if you say the 10% should be calculated off market
                 i'm with the latter camp
                 \_ <cough>
2007/8/15-20 [Finance/Banking, Finance/Investment] UID:47618 Activity:nil
2007/8/15-17 [Reference/RealEstate, Finance/Investment] UID:47616 Activity:nil
        Countrywide Financial selling 30-day bonds at 12.5%
        Overnight bonds at 6 to 6.5%
2007/8/10-13 [Finance/Investment, Finance/Banking] UID:47579 Activity:nil
8/10 (
        Fed accepts MBS bonds, kicking back $35 billion in cash to banks in
        short-term loans, delaying mark-to-market valuations on the bonds
        (encouraging mark-to-Fed accounting schemes).
        \_ (Economist's View)
           That is not really an accurate summary of what really happened.
           The MBS were all Agency backed and therefore gov't guaranteed
           in the first place. Secondly, they did not buy them, they
           accepted them as collatoral for a very short term (72 hour)
           More discussion about it here:
           (I know you don't like this blog, but unless you can find a
            better source of economic explaination, too bad emarkp) -ausman
2007/8/10-13 [Finance/Investment] UID:47576 Activity:nil
        Why is this guy always in photos whenever the market drops?
        \_ He pulls off the "I am in hell" look pretty well.
2007/8/10-13 [Finance/Investment, Industry/Startup] UID:47572 Activity:nil
8/9 (AP)
        Countrywide Financial CEO exercises options and sells Wed at peak
        Press release Thursday after market close causes 13% drop in stock
2007/8/4-6 [Finance, Finance/Investment] UID:47534 Activity:nil
8/4     It's not easy being a mere single digit millionaire:
        \_ Obviously, we need to cut more tax.          -Conservative
        \_ I read that in the paper.  Bunch of fucking whiners.
        \_ This guy is an idiot. His house is paid and he has $2M. Maybe
           I'd keep working if I was 31, but at 51 he needs to do
           something he likes. If work is what he likes then fine, but
           then admit that and don't complain about 12 hour days. The
           article is full of suckers, which I think is the point. If the
           guy cannot afford Hillsborough then maybe he should sell.
           There's no honor in going bankrupt living a life you cannot
           afford just because you were once worth $50M 10 years ago.
2007/8/3-22 [Finance/Investment] UID:47525 Activity:nil
        "Bond market turmoil sending investors fleeing from risk may be a worse
        predicament than the 1980s stock market fall and Internet bubble burst,
        Bear Stearns Chief Financial Officer Sam Molinaro said on Friday."
        ... well that's not a good headline
        \_ It's a cyclical market! Lalalalala!
           \_ Housing prices are going to crater in 2005!  Lalalalala!
           \_ Markets are cyclical.  This is news to you?  Maybe Sam is
              entirely right.  Things drop.  You believe they'll stay that
              way forever?  Do you *want* them to stay that way?  I don't
              see the reason for your snarkiness and sarcasm on such a
              sky-is-blue issue.
2007/7/31 [Finance/Investment] UID:47489 Activity:nil
        Why does today's Taiwan stock market index look like this?  I thought
        exchanges only halted trading on significant dips, but it looks like
        they stopped trading from 10:15am - 12:45pm when it was trending up.
2007/7/31-8/3 [Finance/Investment] UID:47474 Activity:nil
7/31    Why is everyone freaking out about Murdoch buying the WSJ? Are they
        afraid it's going to become a rightwing corporate mouthpiece (lol)
        \_ Yeah, actually I am.  The WSJ NEWS reporting is excellent.
           the WSJ EDITORIAL PAGES are a bunch of 100 percent free market
           loons.  It's an easy distinction.
2007/7/26 [Finance/Investment] UID:47428 Activity:nil
7/26    help, the stock market is falling, and it can't get up!
        \_ is it not at near historic highs?
2007/7/25-29 [Finance, Finance/Investment] UID:47424 Activity:kinda low
7/25    One way to close the gap between the rich and the poor:
        \ "The LAPD’s West Division has put a task force of
          10-plus detectives on the case; plainclothes patrols have joined
          the chase."
          I wonder how many detectives Oakland police would put on the case
          if this was happening at, say, Fruitvale?
          \_ Oakland doesn't have enough officers, so probably no more
             than usual.  Oakland also has an artificial shortage of
             officers, since they all work 4 10 hour shifts, giving them
             3 day weekends.  So on day 5 they get over time.   Oakland
             also has an even more artificial shortage of officers, since
             plenty of Oakland cops fill internal jobs that at other
             depts, are filled by non cops.  The Oakland PD union should be
             destroyed.  I'm sure there are good people in the oakland
             pd but too many of them are fucking stupid or are just riding
             that cushy salary until they retire.
          \_ "Los Angeles Police Department detectives think the crew has
             struck more than 50 times since late last fall."  If the same
             neighborhood in Fruitvale has been struck more than 50 times by
             the same crew, I think Oakland PD would assign quite a few people
             on the case, if not 10-plus.
             \_ Go to
                Search for burglaries within 1 mile of Fruitvale and
                International within the past 90 days.  -tom
        \_ Why don't these super-rich people buy security cameras with higher
           resolution?  That video screenshot is next to useless.
           \_ Resolution is useless if there's no light to be captured.
              Infrared cameras will help, though.
              \_ Or combination of motion sensor light and cameras.
2007/7/23-26 [Finance/Investment, Finance] UID:47389 Activity:kinda low
7/23    Large majorities of people in the US and in Europe want higher
        taxation for the rich, and view globalization as a negative force.
        \_ One problem is defining what "rich" means.
           \_ That's easy, I'm pretty sure the standard everyone in the survey
              was using was "richer than me."
           \_ Easily done: Income > $1,000,000 per year.
              \_ "But but but that is COMMUNISM!!! Time to lobby to make
                  sure this never happens."             -multi-millionaire
              \_ Unfortunately, politicians define "rich" as between $75K and
                 $200K / yr. depending on who is asking the question.
                 \_ Sure, and they're wrong. We all know that millionaires are
                    rich, since they're the only ones who can afford a house
                    the SFBA. Kidding aside, aggressive prosecution under
                    existing laws and repeal of the wealthy-subsidies passed
                    under the Bush Admin would put us back into a surplus.
                    \_ Yes but the economy will halt because there will
                       be no more wealth to trickle down to the poor
                       and everyone will suffer.    -Reagan #12523121 fan
                       \_ Mr. Reagan fan, why does trickle down smell like
                          something out of an R. Kelly home movie?
2007/7/14-16 [Finance/Investment] UID:47290 Activity:nil
7/13    Lefty publication discusses real unemployment rate: (Wall Street Journal)
2007/7/13-15 [Finance/Investment] UID:47288 Activity:nil
7/13    screw you gwbush
        \_ Damn this economy!
           \_ Nevermind that debt! (national or consumer or trade deficit)
2007/7/13-16 [Science/Electric, Finance/Investment] UID:47286 Activity:nil
7/13    Okay, someone mentioned this a week ago, so I have to ask.
        How many of you are millionaires?
        Bill Gates:
        millionaire: ..
        not a millionaire, but on my way: .
                                          \_ if I pass the july bar :-)
        f**k you:
        Gentlemen do not discuss money or sex: .
        \_ Defined how?
           \_ I think it's current value of all your assets.  This includes
              current market value of your house minus remaining principle in
              your mortgage, current dollar amount in your 401(k), current
              market value of your stocks, money in your saving account, plus
              current market value of your car, TV, stereo, porn magazine
              collection, etc.  The fact that you'll have to pay tax if you
              sell your house, cash out your 401(k), etc. is irrelevant.
              -- !OP
              \_ Does it count if you+spouse > $1M, or do you only count
                 half of the house?
                 \_ I would count my spouse, but it is up to you...
2007/6/25-28 [Reference/Tax, Finance/Investment] UID:47055 Activity:moderate
        Americans are very generous.
        \- that is a really lousy article. it's a very fair criticism
           that comparisons of just things like foreign aid from the
           govt isnt fair to the US where there is larger private sector
           donating, it is equally true you have to consider the lower
           taxes here, and some other issues relating to tax policy ...
           if somebody donates a huge amount of money to avoid taxes,
           it needs to be thought of a little differently [read about the
           history of HHMI]. this is another case of an article where it's
           unclear the facts add up to the conclusion suggested [as the
           OP writes, "americans are very generous"]. what should have been
           the biggest piece of news in there is how much "charity" is
           sucked up by religious orgs.  certainly a lot of this goes to
           good ends like church run hospitals [10-20% of community
           hospitals in the US are Catholic church operations] but a lot
           relig donations are sort of parochial, so to speak. also the
           large fraction of the donations going elite educational and
           \_ Parta, seriously, I could care less about the homeless people
              who are causing my property to depreciate. However, I've
              donated hundreds of dollars to Classical 102.1 KDFC. Am
              I an elitist? Do you hate me?
              \- no, i just think there is a difference say volunteering at
                 your kids school and say doing a doctors without borders
                 kind of thing. obviously i am not saying volunteering at
                 your kids school is bad, but a different phenomena is
                 going on.
           medical establishments and elite cultural orgs isnt really
           consistent with the "giving to the poor" conception of
           charity. [and reglig+elite educ/medica/culture is something like
                \_ Au contraire, mon frere!  Going back well into early
                   Europe, pretty much *every* artist, 'doctor', 'scientist',
                   and other 'elite' was only able to produce or research
                   because they had some rich benefactor.  You think all that
                   art was produced on the government dole?  Or by selling to
                   'The People' in the market square?
                   \- no, i'm generally opposed to public funding of the arts.
                      btw you also need to acknowledge the govt had a role
                      via their decision to enforce IP. to get middle class
                      novelists for example, you need to have copyright
           60-70% of the total, i believe]. at least some amount of this
           number is no doubt more of a testiment to the creativity of
           tax profressionals here rather than a reflection on inherent
           generosity. note that there have been some studies looking at
           attitudes changing toward in attitudes toward social welfare
           as there is more mixing of population groups, so the benefits
           are less likely to go toward "people like me", e.g. some
           europeans are beginning to reconsider the high level of the
           social safety net in the face of high levels of brown immigration.
           \_ Wow, partha, you are a real shithead.  The issue of 'optimal
              giving' (e.g., if I want to go good, and I am willing to think
              about it, where should my money go) is completely orthogonal
              to 'generosity.'  I wouldn't give money to most 'conventional
              charities' you probably wouldn't have a problem with, like
              the Red Cross because I think they are a very inefficient use
              of my money.  The vast majority of people have a 'generosity
              impulse', but they aren't really willing to think very hard about
              their money and true causes of problems in the world.  It's true
              that the results they achieve with their
              money aren't as good as they could be, but it sort of seems like
              you are calling into question the morality of their act, which is
              in very poor form.  I am curious if, parallel to you taking a dump
              on the possible motives of Americans who give you might also
              have a spirited defense of the rest of the world (which gives
              a lot less).  I was also most amused by the importance you
              place on historical conceptions of charity as 'alms for the
              poor.'  I wonder if you will have moral objections to
              intentionally improving outcomes by 'counterintuitive means' (or
              objections to calling such things 'charity.') -- ilyas
              objections to calling such things 'charity.')  Sometimes
              Franklin's view is more appropriate than Mother Theresa's.
                -- ilyas
              \_ I believe he already addressed the "citizens of other places
                 don't give as much" when he said their taxes are higher which
                 implies they give through their government so are morally
                 excused from giving personally.  Anyway, we know all rich
                 people are automatically evil oppressors so it doesn't matter
                 if they give to charity or not.  They must be doing it for
                 evil and selfish reasons.
                 \- if i had to summarize my main point:
                    donating $500m in paintings to a museum != donating
                    to "help people". lumping them together clouds the
                    statistics. as i said, the facts dont add up to the
                    conclusions. we can probably say things like "one reason
                    the higher educ institutions are so good here is there
                    sucess getting private donations". by no means would i
                    "dump" on america by saying "but that's only because
                    of lousy public funding it is necessary." although
                    things like tax policy has consequences [like what is the
                    per capita spending at saratoga high school vs. an east
                    sj high school etc].
                    BTW, i think "american generosity" gets the short shrift
                    by not considering the "uncaptured" returns from
                    medical research [antibiotics, vaccines etc], and
                    agricultural reasearch ["green revolution"], but to
                    think about this issue sophisticatedly, there are
                    offsetting negatives as well.
                    \_ Charity is ineffective because determining effects is
                       hard.  I wouldn't even go so far as to say donating
                       to a museum isn't 'helping' -- I just don't understand
                       what 'helps' well enough.  I do know a lot of african
                       charity is extremely counterproductive. -- ilyas
                       \_ Some software is counterproductive.  Therefore,
                          we should stop using software.
                          \_ Where did you get the idea that I am claiming
                             charity is a bad thing or should be stopped?
                             Did you even read my other post?  If there's a
                             normative undercurrent to what I am saying at all,
                             it's that what people should be concentrating on
                             isn't SPENDING but understanding effects, and
                             understanding how complex systems evolve.  In
                             some sense donating is easy, but your conscience
                             shouldn't rest just because you donated to
                             something recently. -- ilyas
2007/5/9-14 [Finance/Investment] UID:46576 Activity:nil
        Daily trading volume of China's two major stock exchanges at $5
        billion six months ago, $16 billion two months ago, and $49 billion
        today -- exceeding Japan, the UK, and second only to the U.S.
        \_ China doesn't have the equivilent of the SEC.
           \_ not disagreeing, but China doesn't have day trading or hedge
              funds (the latter contributing at least 25% of U.S. volume any
              given day).
           \_ Yes they do. It's called The Invisible Hand.
              \_ ka-boom!
        \_ Plotting the curve shows China should meltdown in about 5-6 weeks.
           \_ What curve?
2007/5/7 [Finance/Investment] UID:46551 Activity:nil 72%like:46548
5/7     Murdoch's global plan for WSJ
2007/5/7-9 [Finance/Investment] UID:46548 Activity:nil 72%like:46551
5/7     Murdoch's global plan for WSJ (
2007/5/7-9 [Finance/Investment] UID:46539 Activity:nil
        Bear fund manager predicts Dow will fall "at least 50% ... I think this
        is a topping pattern.  We think it's probably three to six months away"
        Fund hoards gold and shorts the market, has miniscule 0.55% and 0.60%
        1-yr and 3-yr annualized returns.
        \_ Uh, if he is right, what should we do? CDs? MM? ING/X Direct?
           \_ You should diversify regardless of his predictions.
              Put some in bonds, CDs, index funds, metals, energy, real estate,
              and dot coms. I'd bet energy would be a big gain in the next few
              decades or so.
           \_ Buy his fund, of course!  Aside from that, can you get Euro
              CDs?  If the dollar tanks US CDs might not be a good idea.
        \_ Quick!  Short GOOG NOW!
2007/5/1-4 [Finance/Investment] UID:46499 Activity:nil
5/1     Virgin Air to show Loose Change 2 on inflight movie.
        \_ Why is this documentary called Loose Change 2 while there is a
           comedy called Loose Change?
2007/5/1-4 [Finance/Investment] UID:46494 Activity:nil
5/1     Father of Fox Republican News to by Dow Jones. HEIL MURDOCK!!!,2933,269420,00.html
2007/4/27-5/1 [Finance/Investment] UID:46468 Activity:low
        Investor Jeremy Grantham says we are now experiencing the first
        worldwide bubble in history -- all asset classes are inflated.
        "My colleagues suggest that this global bubble has not yet had this
        phase [an "exponential phase" just prior to the falloff] and perhaps
        they are right. ... In which case, pessimists or conservatives will
        take considerably more pain."
        \_ Then again, we could just be entering a period of long term low
           interest rates, which would make fixed income producing assets
           worth more. During the middle of the Pax Romana, real interest
           rates were about 2% and during the Victorian Era in England,
           worth more. During the middle of the Pax Romana, interest
           rates were about 4% and during the Victorian Era in England,
           rates were even lower. This may be a comparable time. -ausman
                \_ We're entering uncharted territory since never before
                   in the history has the global economy been so interdependent
                   and dependent on energy -- which is about to experience
                   a major disturbance.
                   \_ What major disturbance? Peak Oil does not qualify as
                      a disturbance, more a slow motion train wreck.
        \_ "By his calculations, the only assets likely to beat inflation by
           any significant margin if you hold them for the next seven years
           are managed timber, "high-quality" U.S. stocks, and bonds."
           That doesn't sound like all asset classes. His idea of high
           quality stocks includes Home Depot, which proves he is on crack.
           Ignore him.
2007/4/18-21 [Finance/Investment] UID:46365 Activity:nil
        I don't get it.  In the space of 1 year, the Shanghai Stock Exchange
        index has gone from 1400 to 3600.  What gives?  Doesn't the central
        government love stability?  Does this mean 3600+ is stable?
        \_ first of all, Shanghai Stock Exchange, like *ALL* Asian stock
           exchange, is not nearly as transparent as NYSE, etc.
           However, recently I've attended a leading Chinese economist.
           He said there are couple reason why stockmarket are high
           - for some reason, average profit margin has increased tremedously
             in past 3-5 years
           - PE Ratio was hover around 15 back in 2005.  Now, it's close to
             35, which is close to NYSE average.  But compare with all other
             Asian stock market's average P/E ratio, Shanghai is actually on
             the low side, which implies there are still a way to go
             \_ This is wrong on a number of counts: first of all, the S&P
                500 P/E is 16, not 35. Secondly, the P/E of most asian
                markets is not over 35. In the Korean borse, it is 10,
                for example. I personally think that the Shanghai market
                is in a bubble, driven by a lack of investment opportunities
                for regular Chinese, but I could be wrong.
           - while raw material prices are on the rise (thanks to US choke on
             energy market), inflation is relatively in checked due to
             stagnant labor cost (see below)
           - while hourly wages has increase something like 30% in past 5
             years, productivity also increase about the same amount. Much
             of the productivity gain (which is probably the highest in the
             world) is due to deregulation and market reform in conjunction of
             IT revolution.
           - China's economy is finally got out of contraction mode and
             start expanding.  Key industries are housing and automobiles
             (great, here goes the Earth)
                \_ Uh, what? Hasn't China's economy grown by 10% or so every
                   year for over a decade?
           - MarketShare/GDP was depressed back in 2005.   I didn't pay
             much attention to this number because I have no idea what does
             number means
        Overall, the economist is relatively optimist about China economy's
        fundamental and therefore he personally didn't think the stock market
        is too high.  Then again, stock market seldem reflects the
        fundamentals.                                   kngharv
        \_ kngharv, do you agree with that economist?
        \_ SSEC down 4.5% today.  But I get it.  China is doing everything
           it can to moderate growth, but investors just can't get enough. -op
        \_ SSEC down 6.5% today.  Just in time! -op
2007/4/18-20 [Reference/RealEstate, Finance/Investment] UID:46361 Activity:nil
4/18    Free advice sought from soda financial advisors.
        I'm a single guy making about $120k with no debt and about $150k
        saved.  What would be a ballpark estimate of how much house I can
        afford in the Bay Area.  Any other major variable to consider?
        \_ Um, STFW?  There are mortgage payment calculators on the web.
           Second, do you know your own budget?  How much of a payment
           can you afford?  And remember to figure in $250/mo for utils,
           and monthly payments for house insurance and property tax.
           Not to mention a monthly expense to "buy stuff" for your
           house, like furniture, and don't forget house maintenace.
           assumes 33% payment-to-income ratio for "aggressive".
           for san jose this comes out to a ~ $585K house.
           \- that calculator probably assumes dependents [children]. if you
              you are single, and not a cokehead, or driving "teutonic rolling
              stock", it's probably ok to shift toward the aggressive side,
              tempered by factors like job-relocation flexibility and what
              your beliefs are about the future of the mkt [i say beliefs,
              because you dont want to end up in an investment that causes
              you stress because it's at odds with your appetitie for risk].
              there are also difficult, person-specific choices like borrowing
              against 401k/403b etc [how common is that for 20-30somethings?
              different people have very different expectations of future
              income from salary increase reates, inheritance etc.].
              btw, i think the calcultor there has some other issues.
              the house price changes by exactly the same amount as
              the down payment. i.e. for a downpayment of $150k, the house
              price is exactly $150k more than $0 downpayment. but it's
              certainly reasonable for a ballpark [i.e. you can do better than
              a $350k house in the sticks but probably not a million dollar
              place in sf]. it's kinda funny that with those stats, buying
              a place in "90%" of the country is a non-issue [the land of
              <$350k houses]. if not sf, not palo alto, not nyc, not ...
        \_ Well *I* think you can go up to about $1M, but you probably
           can't get a bank to lend you that much. What are your current
           expenses? You should be able to do the math on what you can
           afford. People in the Bay Area have always spent more than
           33% on housing.
2007/3/28-31 [Finance/Investment] UID:46122 Activity:nil
3/28    Why is there not a clear correlation between crude price and actual
        price at the pumps? Am I missing something about the very
        basic laws of supply and demand?
        \_ One theory is that if the crude price increases, it implies
           that the future supply is uncertain and could become quite
           scarce. Thus, the present stock is more valuable than the
           price originally paid. A immediate price increase is needed
           to accurate reflect this valuation. In addition, if the supply
           does become scarce, one must earn future profits with current
           stock. This requires a present increase in price.
           If the crude price falls, this cannot be reflected at the pump
           w/o taking a present loss. Current stock was obtained at a
           higher price. To recoup this higher purchase price, one must
           continue selling that stock at a higher price. Therefore, a
           lag is necessary.
           A competing theory suggests that the oil companies just like
           making money and have no incentive to take less of your money.
           \_ Produce prices in Chinatown follow the same pattern.  When a
              storm is forecasted, produce prices go up right away; when the
              storm is over, produce prices stay up for a while before going
              back to normal.  I personally believe in the "competing theory"
           \_ The prices go up suddenly because current prices reflect future
              value, which includes uncertainty.  After the uncertainty goes
              away, it takes some time for competitive pressures to push the
              price back down.
        \_ There is.  Anyone who tells you otherwise has an agenda. See the
           following chart:
           Check the box "Show Crude Oil Price".
           However, the demand of gasoline is very inelastic, so when demand
           outstrips supply, the price change is quick and dramatic.  Lastly,
           local laws dramatically affect the price (requiring certain blends,
           taxes, etc.).
2007/3/27-29 [Reference/RealEstate, Finance/Investment] UID:46105 Activity:nil
        \_ Yes.  It does.  Over time.  No one with a multi-decade investment
           time line ever lost money on real estate.  If you bought swamp
           \_ The same is true of the stock market.  Read a random walk down
              wall street.  Over any 20 year time span, including one where
              you invest on the eve of the great depression, the stock market
              has averaged at least 20% annual returns after inflation.  Read
              a random walk down wall street. -dans
              \_ 20% after inflation? I think not. Try more like 7%. -ausman
                 \_ mea culpa. -dans
           land, that's your problem.  Land ownership is the traditional
           way to wealth going back to the start of history.  The other way
           is military conquest of the world but I doubt you have a personal
           \_ Is that true?  I remember a time when Tokyo real estate
              bubbled to truly absurd values.  If you bought at the wrong
              time I think you may have failed to beat inflation over a
              30 year period.
              \_ Yes, it's true.  If you buy over priced swamp land you're
                 going to get burned.  Doesn't matter if the swamp land is in
                 Florida or Tokyo.  There's always more people, there's always
                 less land.
           \_ I'm pretty sure you've qualified that statement so much that an
              equivelent statement could be made for stocks.  "No one has ever
              lost money in a multi-decade investment in a well diversified
              portfolio."  Is that not true as well?
              \_ Not equivalent--key diff is "diversified".  You could easily
                 lose money in real estate in selected markets, even long term.
           \_ I think that land ownership has been the traditional way to
              store and transfer wealth. The traditional ways to create
              wealth have been trade and military conquest (which is just
              taking someone else's wealth).
              \_ I did mention conquest.  Trade is another way but requires
                 more effort and skill than sitting on land and waiting.
2007/3/26-29 [Science/GlobalWarming, Finance/Investment, Transportation/Car] UID:46096 Activity:nil
3/26    My car has about 145K miles and so far I've had to do oil change
        every 3K miles. I'm thinking of switching to synthetic because
        I've heard that 10K synthetic oil change is equivalent to a regular
        3K change. I hate having to get an oil change every 3K and if I
        can extend it to 10K it would be worth 2X the $ I pay for. Has
        anyone switched to synthetic yet?
        \_ I am running on synthetic, but not exactly for the reason
           you mentioned. Synthetic allows me to go about 7k miles
           between changes. One way to gauge it is, wipe the level
           check on a piece of paper, and you'll be able to see how
           'dirty' the oil is. With regular, after 3-4k, the paper is
           dirty. With synthetic, after 6k, it's still reasonably
           clear. Synthetic also gives you more lubrication/power when
           your engine has been running for a while, such as on long
        \_ I use synthetic because I don't want to bring my car in as often.
           It costs more but not that much more so it's worth it.
2007/3/19-22 [Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton, Finance/Investment] UID:46015 Activity:low
3/19    Ben Stein:  It's A Good Time To Buy
        \_ useless article with no analysis.  Typical.  -tom
        \- you should read the BEEN STEIN smackdown from paul krugman.
           "i won the john bates clarke medal. you are a game show host."
           \_ Ugh, Krugman is an idiot--and Stein isn't a real estate expert.
              \_ dont you feel the slightest bit reticent calling a person
                 well-acknowledged by their peers an idiot? i mean maybe his
                 comments on march mandness are stupid, but in his area?
              \_ Krugman may be a bit gloomy, but could you point me
                 to where he has been dead wrong?  Thanks.
                    \_ the first url isn't very convincing, spending the first
                       three paragraphs on an ideological rant
                    \_ The third one does not contain any evidence of factual
                       errors, just a difference of opinion as to how scarce
                       resources should be allocated. The author thinks that
                       medical resources should be allocated on the basis of
                       ability to pay, Krugman thinks they should be socialized.
                       Just because someone disagrees with you, it doesn't
                       make them "dead wrong."
2007/3/12-14 [Finance/Investment] UID:45938 Activity:kinda low
3/12    My iBook's time did not accomodate the time change, which seems
        weird since it gets the time from <DEAD><DEAD>. How can I
        have it change automatically (i.e. not set it manually)? Thanks.
        \_ <DEAD><DEAD> will only give you GMT. Your OS will still
        \_ will only give you GMT. Your OS will still
           need to adjust for the new DST.
        \_ Get the system update, your time zone files are screwed up.
                \_ Got it. Thanks. -op
2007/3/8-11 [Finance/Investment] UID:45911 Activity:nil
3/8     Damn this Bush economy!
        \_ note the number is the SUM net worth for ALL households, not the
           median percentage gain/loss per household.
           this would imply that those households with million-dollar+ hedge
           fund accounts would absorb much of the gain, just like they have
           much of the $$$ anyway, deserved or not.
           E.g., between 2001 - 2004, net worth for the median American
           family increased only 1.5% after inflation (took three years!).
           What you may be falsely implying is that in 2006, in just one year,
           the median American family saw a 7.4% increase in net worth.
2007/3/7 [Finance/Investment, Reference/RealEstate] UID:45903 Activity:nil 88%like:45906
3/7     The Myth of "Superstar Cities"
2007/2/28-3/3 [Finance/Investment] UID:45844 Activity:low
3/1     I lost some money in currency trading last year (about $1000).
        How do you exactly write it off for tax purposes?
        \_ Gambling loss. Did you have a receipt or any written documentation
           to back you up in case of an audit?
           \_ I have statements, and I have the statement that lists the
              initial deposit as well as the final withdraw amount
              (less). Is this sufficient? I thought this category is the
              same as stock-market loss instead of gambling loss? ok thx.
        \_ I think that would be a capitol loss and can only be used to offset
           capitol gains, but you can "save" it until you have some cap gains
           to offset.
2007/2/27-3/1 [Finance/Investment] UID:45826 Activity:nil
2/27    Chinese stock market go boom.
        \_ Too lazy to check Google News. What means, boom? Crash or grow?
           \_ Crash, followed by the Dow.
2007/2/5-7 [Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Finance/Investment] UID:45661 Activity:kinda low
2/5     Fuck Bush, R congress, Microsoft, Redhat <=AS2.1, et. al..  The
        DST change is going to make my life hell.
        \_ I actually like it. I think it is overdue. I want evening
           daylight, not daylight at 5:00am.
        \_ What are you talking about?
           \_ IYHTAYDW
              \_ If You Have To Ask You Don't... Whoah?
        \_ Time zone change?  Did you mean the start and end of Daylight
           Savings time instead?
           \_ Yes.  To your OS, there is no difference between the two.
           \_ The change of law that has moved the dates to start DST.
              \_ I thought M$ has downloads to update Windozes for this.
        \_ What about all the money/resources wasted to make new
           'gadgets' that are aware of this stupid new DST? Have to
           replace your damned alarm clock for crying out loud!
           \_ Nah.. That's not "waste"!  That's "reducing inventory"!
        \_ Hello ignorant person.  This is hardly the first time DST has
           been changed.  In about 8 seconds of searching you'll find the
           history of day light savings and see just how far back and how
           many times this has happened.  I suggest searching for "History
           of day light savings".  BTW, when you blame Bush and R's for
           every trivial thing you sound like Chicken Little.  No one wants
           to hear the real complaints when you moan and cry and finger
           point about everything from DST changes to the ocean not being
           quite the right shade of pink in the mornings.
           \_ Wow, someone's hyperbole detector is on the fritz.  Fuck off,
              little man.
2007/1/29-2/1 [Finance/Investment] UID:45610 Activity:high
1/28    If US currency is not backed by gold, what is the purpose of
        spending money on upkeeping and protecting gold in Fort Knox?
        \_ Ha you saw the history channel special too.  ok im going
           to quit watching tv now.
           \_ Yay someone else besides me likes to watch the History
              Channel. It is the best! I like Modern Marvels and
              anything about Hitler. How about you?
        \_ It's a honey pot for evil geniuses
        \_ What are you asking?  They should just leave a few gazillion lbs
           of gold on the front lawn?  The gold still has value and IMHO
           provides an unofficial backing of our currency so debt buyers and
           cash holders know the USG has something of value sitting around
           just in case.
           \- this is pretty humorous.
           \- right on the "it has to be kept somewhere" part [and a number
              of monetary authorites agreed not to liquidate their gold
              reserves, even though it is sort of a loser investment],
              but i dont think your "imho" part is really true w.r.t. to
              the us. the total gold reserves are for example probably in
              the 1-2% of the us debt ... that's not really amaerica's
              collateral. the importance and exact reason for govts to
              hold gold has changed over time and i think it is fair to
              say the imp has generally declined. it's not reasonable to
              go much beyond this, but you might look up "special drawing
              rights" for what "replaced" gold [although we've sort of
              moved beyond SDRs too].
              \_ Only 1-2%?  Is that a real estimate or are you totally
                 guessing?  My totally random guess is that it would be
                 higher but I haven't had a chance to tour Fort Knox in
                 a while to count bars.
                   \- the us debt is approaching 9 trillion. why dont you
                      look up the price of gold today and calculate how
                      many tons of gold 1-2% is. note: gold isnt measured
                      in "regular" oz. if you dont even know there is more
                      gold at the ny fed than at ft knox, it's hard to take
                      your totally random guesses especially seriously.
                      your totally random geusses especially seriously.
                        \_ I said it was a totally random guess.  Why would
                           you take it seriously?
                           \_ So you are saying "you first impression of
                              me should have been 'i am dumb' and you should
                              have ignored me." ... ?  Can you sign your posts
                              with a unique identifier so we can file this
                              away for future reference?
                      BTW, what is your guess at the percentage?
                      note: this ignores the obvious fact that if you
                      note: this obviously ignores the fact that if you
                      had to sell any appreciable fraction of the gold
                      to cover a debt, the price would collapse. on the other
                      to cover a dept, the price would collapse. on the other
                      and a lot of indian women would be really happy.
                 \_ They're all accounted for and each room has a seal with
                    the amount of gold in it. The latest estimate of the net
                    worth in Fort Knox is about (in today's dollar)
                    100 billions.
        \_ I thought the lions share of the gold was removed (for the same
           reason you just mentioned, the US not needing it for money backing).
           Now the just store bullion cubes there (can never have too much soup
           imo). -mrauser
           \_ Mmmmm... soup!
        \_ "In volatile market, only stable investment... is PORN!" -- Avenue Q
2007/1/25 [Industry/Jobs, Industry/Startup, Finance/Investment] UID:45589 Activity:nil Entry has been invalidated. Access denied.
2006/12/26-30 [Politics/Domestic/California, Finance/Investment] UID:45498 Activity:nil
12/26   Thomas Sowell's take on the fixation of income disparity.
        \- this is such a bullshit essay. he is mischaracterizing the
           "it makes no sense" line. the question is about equillibria
           and looking for explanations for "out-of-equillibria" behavior.
           for example for sports stars or hollywoods starts, there is
           actually an explanation offered for the giant paychecks of
           megastars, and that is the "winner-takes-all" or "superstar"
                                        \_ "prize economy" is the phrase
                                           you are looking for
           theory [i dont know anything about sports, but the rough
           explanation is megastars like MJ dont just help you win games,
           MJ sell tickets, sell merchandise, sell the brand ... simlarly
           if you hire tom cruise-level stars, they arent just fulfilling
           an acting role, but casting them serves as advertising etc ...
           people magazing, entertainment tonight etc will advertise your
           movie because you have cast tom cruise. i.e. there are not
           really many substitutes for these types. there are a limited
           number. YMWTGF(sherwin rosen, economics of superstars).]
           this is more what an honest discussion of compensation issue
           and trends looks like:
           and to go from "these salaries seem historically high" to
           "govt dept of regulation salaries" is obviously a textbook
           also the "famous essay" about the pencil was actually made
           famous by milton friedman. i dont think it was especially
           famous until he talked about it in his free to choose show.
           \_ Everyone should be paid according to their needs.  Sorry,
              I just read Atlas Shrugged. ;)
2006/12/15-21 [Politics/Domestic/SocialSecurity, Finance/Investment] UID:45452 Activity:moderate
12/15   Shadow Statistics-- Ben Bernanke, Fed chairman, recently delivered
        an upbeat view of the U.S. economy. It was cheerful, optimistic...
        and delusional.
        \_ Ok, assuing one buys this, what does one invest in?  Stocks are
           out, real estate (at least around here) is over-inflated.
           India's economy is over-heated.  I don't trust the Chinese
           govt., so I don't want to invest there. Gold? Euro stocks?
           \_ AK's and canned food.
           \_ I just dumped money in Canada, perhaps too late as Canada
              has been solid for years now, but I think still a safe
              play. Japan also looks promising, although it has looked
              that way for years.
           \_ If you believe in what this guy is saying, you should
              head to the hills and try living as a subsistance farmer.
              He makes some valid points, but waaaaay overstates his
              case imho.
           \_ you don't think Japan's economy and Chinese economy is not
              interwind?  You think Chinese economy exist in a vaccum?
2006/11/30-12/12 [Finance/Investment] UID:45397 Activity:nil
11/30   I'm willing to wager $100 that Soda will be up for another 3 months
        or less before it is completely down for at least 3 days again.
        \_ I'm willing to bet it will be within 3 weeks.
           \- I'm willing to bet it will be down for months this time around.
              and most services will be fucked forever. -linxu
        \_ it's too bad there isn't a simple thing to handle
           futures trading on something like this.  i'd really be interested
           in one with a few more issues that big sites are too chickenshit
           to host, like:  Enter recession (two consec quarters neg GDP) by
           Q207, or NASDAQ below 2,200 by Feb 28, 2007.
           2Q07, or NASDAQ below 2,200 by Feb 28, 2007.
2006/11/7-8 [Finance/Investment] UID:45210 Activity:kinda low
11/6    The new 007 doesn't have a strong handsome look like Sean Connery
        and Timothy Dalton. Instead he looks like an average Joe, like me!
        This makes me feel really good about myself. Hooray!   -average joe
        \_ Have you watched any of the Sean Connery Bond films recently?
           Casino Royale is technically the first of the Bond stories, since
           it begins before Bond is a double-0 agent.  I think that as a nod
           to this they cast Daniel Craig who is more in the Sean Connery mold,
           i.e. strong and something of a bastard, than either Timothy Dalton
           or Pierce Brosnan who, compared to Connery are kind of pussies.
           -gay dans
           \_ I for one welcome the change. I'm sick and tired of my gf
              saying how handsome Piercie looks.        -jealous dude
           \_ I don't think that Craig is really in the Sean Connery mold.
              He seems too muscular and brutish, more like a thug than an
              intelligence officer. I'm willing to give him a chance, but
              I don't really have high expectations b/c the trailer makes
              the movie look like yaActionFlick, which is not what a Bond
              movie is/was. I actually liked Brosnan in GoldenEye and TND,
              but he was terrible in the last two movies. I'd say he was
              my 3d favorite bond behind Connery and Moore (yes I liked
              Roger Moore, he was humorous).
              To OP - I don't know many "average Joes" who look like this:
              (but I am gay, so YMMV)
        \_ A lot of women I know seem to think he's pretty handsome, although
           most of my female friends who care were hoping for Clive Owen or
           Robbie Williams (?!?)  One even mentioned Ewan McGregor but I guess
           he's too much of a prettyboy.  -John
           \_ Obi-Wan as 007?!? Inconceivable! -stmg
              \_ What?  I see no mention of Alec Guinness anywhere in this
                 \_ Okay, Young Obi-Wan as Young 007!?!? Inconceivable! -stmg
2006/11/4-6 [Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Finance/Investment] UID:45157 Activity:low
        Unemployment Rate Hits 5 1/2 Year Low at 4.4 Percent as
        Economy Adds 92,000 Jobs
        \_ See? Trickle-down economy works. Tax cut works.
        \_ The current unemployment numbers are totally cooked. According
           to the Economist, if unemployment today was measured the way
           that it was in the 70s, current unemployment would be 7%.
           I prefer to use overall employment, since it is harder to
           manipulate, and that is down over the last two years about
           two percent.
           \_ How were they calculated in the 70s vs today and when did
              it change?  7% is still pretty good.
              \_ No, we want to socialize everything like the Europeans,
                 Canadians because that way our unemployment goes up!
           \_ How were they calculated in the 70s vs today and when
              did it change?  7% is still pretty good.
2006/11/1-2 [Finance/Investment] UID:45081 Activity:nil
11/01   Trump could be fined $250/day for violating his HOA rules. Oh
        I bet he's really scared! Not.
2006/10/26-27 [Finance, Finance/Investment] UID:44988 Activity:nil 66%like:44972
10/25   Revolt of the fairly rich (
        \_ Because they can best see the broken promises of the prior social
           order where "go to school, work hard = good retirement".
2006/10/25-26 [Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton, Finance/Investment] UID:44972 Activity:nil 66%like:44988
        Revolt of the fairly rich
        \_ Because they can best see the broken promises of the prior social
           order where "go to school, work hard = good retirement".
2006/10/20-24 [Industry/Startup, Finance/Investment] UID:44895 Activity:moderate
10/19   Ok it's REALLY time to short GOOG   -not the original short guy
        \_ On 10/19 (when you wanted to short GOOG), GOOG's stock price
           was 420.23 at the start of that day.  It closed on 10/19 at
           426.06.  It opened on 10/20 at 458.99.  Closed on 10/20 at
           So assuming that you actually want to make money instead of losing
           money, I'd say that the answer to your question is this:
           ABSOLUTELY NOT.
        \_ Is this you? Price was around $420
        \_ (
        \_ Why would you short a company that just reported outstanding
           revenue and earnings growth?  -tom
           \_ Shorting isn't my thing but in general because they get 99% of
              their revenue from ads which could dry up overnight for any
              number of reasons.  There is more to evaluating a company than
              \_ Are you also suggesting shorting all the TV networks?
                 I don't think there's any likelihood that Google's ad
                 revenue dries up in the short term; they are clearly the
                 dominant force in Internet advertising and there is no
                 credible challenger.
                 More to the point, if your concern is that Google's ad
                 revenue may dry up, why was that not true when the stock
                 was at 100, 200, 300, 400?  Why get in the way of a frieght
                 train *now*?  -tom
                 \_ The TV networks have an age old and somewhat predictable
                    ad model.  The internet is not TV.  It's only barely got
                    off the ground.  So it went from IPO 80ish to 400+.  Past
                    performance, especially something like the stock value,
                    does not in any way guarantee future performance.  In 98
                    everyone thought it was a New Economy and "all the old
                    rules are broken!  Its the Intarweeb ya know!"  Anyway, no,
                    I have never traded nor would ever trade google.  They hide
                    too much information to make an informed decision about
                    their true value.
                    \_ My point is not that Google will go up indefinitely;
                       it's that shorting should be done of companies with
                       it's that shorting should be done to companies with
                       significant, identifiable business problems, not
                       companies making gobs of money and growing rapidly.
                       It is virtually impossible for a common investor to
                       time the turn of a market or a stock correctly.  -tom
                          But yes, I do agree that one should not try to time
                          an individual stock ever or the market in general.
                          Trying to time a secretive company like google would
                          be financially suicidal.  Their stock price will
                          continue to rise... until it doesn't.  Once the "it
                          is google!  it is the New Economy Intarweeb!" shine
                          rubs off, their stock will plummet and drop back to
                          something reasonable, but no one can say day that
                          will be.  It could be next quarter, it could be
                          years.  Check out the link, it describes internet
                          ad business's time bomb waiting to go off.
                          \_ For me, the scariest thing about Google isn't
                             their business model but their approach to
                             "managing" their engineers - and I use those
                             quotation marks wisely.  -!tom
                             \_ How so?  It isn't all that different from a lot
                                of other companies created in that time.
                                \_ Yeah and most of them have failed. The
                                   no management approach to management might
                                   be appropriate for a startup, but I just
                                   don't see how a company of 5000 can
                                   operate that way.
                                   \_ Most of them failed for business reasons.
                                      Their engineers mostly created all sorts
                                      of amazingly cool stuff.  Don't blame
                                      lack of engineer skill or dedication for
                                      the dotcom bust.
                                      \_ Believe me, I don't. I blame bad
                                         management and insane financial
                                         expectations. But aren't these
                                         exactly Google's problems now?
                             \_ Please explain.
2006/10/4-6 [Reference/Tax, Finance/Investment] UID:44676 Activity:low
10/4    Just FYI, the Dow has hit an all-time high.  In this crappy Bush
        economy, damn him.
        \_ 1. median income went down.  2. average income only increased by
           something lik 0.3% while the inflation is running around 2-3%.
           3. housing price is dropping and interest is raising.
           For those who is making less than $200,000 a year, life is actually
           kind of sucks.
           \_ My life doesn't suck.
        \_ And it only took 7 years...
           \_ Try 5 years.  And recall what happened in those 5 years.
              \_ Jan 2000 - Oct 2006..  Nearly 7 years.  Also, using the DOW
                 as your measure for "the economy" is.. stupid.
        \_ As soon as that brings in taxes that cancel out the huge tax cuts
           and let us stop deficit spending like irresponsible college students
           I'll be impressed.
           \_ The tax cuts just weren't that big.  The poor don't pay income
              taxes, the middle class get soaked of course and the truly rich
              never paid income taxes of any note.  It's a nice idea though.
              Imagine if Mrs. Kerry actually paid the same percentage on her
              taxes that normal people do and didn't have a zillion loopholes.
              \_ The cuts weren't just in income taxes...
              \_ So if they weren't big, then they should already have been
                 cancelled out and we should have budget surpluses and be
                 able to start paying off the Debt.  Right?  (Not talking about
                 mid-year surplus B.S.)
                 \_ Gosh, because spending went up?  Waaaay up?  naah.  I'd
                    still like Mrs. Kerry to pay the same percentage of her
                    income in taxes that normal people do.
                    \_ And I'd rather that she pay a high percentage
                       commensurate with the increased value of the benefit
                       she gets from having a society that doesn't burn down
                       her house for hoarding wealth. -Dem
2006/10/3-5 [Consumer/Audio, Finance/Investment] UID:44649 Activity:nil
        Cute rabbits
        \_ It would be cooler if you could buy two, supply them with power,
           and sell the results.
2006/10/1-3 [Finance/Investment, Recreation/Media] UID:44619 Activity:low
10/1    Casino Royale Trailer is up:
        I miss Sean, Bond is not just yaActionHero.
        \_ Yeah, that's the trailer that makes me think that this guy will be
           George Lasenby (sp?) II
        \_ Does new Bond's perpetual Zoolanderish lip pucker annoy anyone else?
        \_ Does new Bond's perpetual Zoolanderish lip pucker annoy anyone
           \_ I can't stand the new guy. Why did they have to switch from
              Brosnon? Was he getting too old?
              \_ I liked the new guy in Layer Cake and Munich. Give him a
                 chance. --erikred, who also like Pierce Brosnan
                 \_ Well, I'll still watch it. I always watch Bond and
                    Star Trek movies (even the odd numbered ones!) -stmg
2006/9/21-24 [Politics, Finance/Investment] UID:44488 Activity:nil
9/21    Dear socialists. Please stop your childish mockery of the
        invisible hand. It is getting old.         -free market supporter
        \_ You are a tool, and are the reason it's fun to mock free market
           supporters.  The ideas of free market economics outlasted the
           USSR, have spread across the globe, and have won out again and again
           in the brutal international marketplace of ideas.  They can also
           survive The Hand that Wanks the Motd, and they can survive without
           your whining.
           \_ why don't we abolish SEC, EPA, FDA, FAA, and  National Highway
              Safety Board, let the market decide the minimum safety
              requirements and insider trading?
           \_ The proletariat will rise up and crush you, capitalist running
              dog.  --mao
              \_ the reason why I am a leftist is precisely this.  if we don't
                 try to narrow the gap between the rich and poor, at some
                 point proletariats will rise up.
           \_ Actually, you're wrong.  There are almost no pure free markets.
              In the "market of ideas", the winner is really that the best
              economic system is a mix of free market and gov't regulation.
              Extremism in either direction causes much suffering.
              \_ I'm not advocating pure free markets, or any other economic
                 system.  I'm just pointing out that op's whining is idiotic.
                 I didn't start this idiotic thread.
        \_ The invisible hand can not be resisted.  --the invisible hand
2006/9/19-22 [Finance/Investment] UID:44438 Activity:nil
9/19    Wtf is Etrade charging me $40 for not trading, and can I move my
        holdings out of their grimy, usurious hands?
        \_ I transfered all my holdings from Etrade to Ameritrade several
           years ago b/c it just didn't like dealing w/ them.  There is
           a transfer in kind form that you will need to fill out. Usually
           the new brokerage will be able to give you the necessary info.
           the fucking new brokerage will be able to give you the necessary info.
           \_ Same here, moved to Scottrade.  Just make sure which ever
              company you move to does not have the same stupid
              company you move to does not have the fucking same stupid
              "inactivity" fee.
           \_ You can also ask ameritrade for free trades for opening up
              a new account (or transferring shares/money into it).
2006/9/3-6 [Science/GlobalWarming, Finance/Investment] UID:44260 Activity:nil
9/3     Most people think the housing boom will turn into a slowdown, and
        some think that it'll crash. In either case, what do you think the
        most likely scenario for rich investors to invest next? Gold?
        Silver? Energy? Or maybe Tech stocks all over again?
        \_ Definitely gold.  Tech stocks are long dead.
2006/9/3-7 [Finance/Investment] UID:44259 Activity:kinda low
9/3     Hi motd. I'm in my mid 20s and I have about $35K cash. I already
        have a decent place to live and I have a car, thus I don't want to
        spend my cash on anything other than investments. What is a good
        investment strategy for someone like me? Thanks.
        \_ How soon might you need to use the cash? I'd think about buying
           property, although the timing is not so good right now.
        \_ in the long term, just dump all your cash into QQQQ and/or SPDR
           electronic index fund. If you want be a bit more advanturous,
           you can spend 1/4 or 1/3 on GLD, then the rest in index fund.
           Don't wait on the side-line for too long, don't try to pull money
           out when the market moves ups and down.
        \_ How did you come up with 35K in cash while still in your mid-20s
           and presumably saddled with a mortgage?  Are you a hooker?
           \_ Yes, I am a hooker.  -hooker
           \_ It makes sense if you assume this person is renting, even better,
              a room in a house, even better, sharing a room, even better, got
              the car as a gift/used from parents.  Even if you didn't invest,
              you could have much more than $35K in savings if you were frugal.
              How many 26-year-olds do you see wandering around with a mortgage
              (even interest-only) without parental assistance or special
              \_ It's called "not living in California".   A 90,000 dollar
                 condo is not out of reach for a 26 year old.
                 \_ Wow.  A wonderful 90,000 dollar condo in the middle of the
                    paradise that is Oklahoma.  Your life must be wonderful.
              \_ Or maybe she is a hooker.
                 \_ One can only hope so.  -John Karr
        \_ Depends on how cautious you are. It might be a good idea to get
           a short term (3-mo) CD for part of the money b/c interest rates
           on CDs are now about 5%.
        \_ Depends on how cautious you are. It might be a good idea to get
           a short term (3-mo) CD for part of the money b/c interest rates
           on CDs are now about 5%.  I would put the rest into Mutual Funds
           or QQQQ.
           \_ I know nothing about finance, and had never heard of QQQQ, so I
              looked it up.  Looking at the following graph:
              I'm perplexed as to why anyone would want to invest in that.
              Can someone explain?
              \_ as scary as it may sound, but this is about as good as you
                 can do.  FYI, a money manager who can consistantly beat the
                 market by 1% is considered pretty good.
              \_ QQQQ is an index fund that tracks the Nasdaq.  To the extent
                 that the U.S. economy has growth prospects, the Nasdaq is
                 a fairly safe bet.  -tom
                 \_ So are you saying that the graph in the above link is
                    wrong?  If you had invested almost any time in the last
                    six years, you would lose money.   Or at least that's my
                    interpretation of the data.
                    \_ If you are in your mid 20s and you don't need the
                       money in the short term, the stock market has
                       traditionally been the best place to keep your
                       money.  You need to have a longer time horizon than
                       5 years.  -tom
                    \_ I disagree. If one invested in late 2002, one would
                       have made a decent amount of money. I certainly did.
                       The other things about QQQQ is that it is not a long
                       term investment. It is preferable to trade somewhat
                       regularly to realize your gains.
                       BTW, I meant to say you should put the remainder
                       into QQQQ and Mutual Funds (not 'or').  Mutual Funds
                       provide much more long term stability, but the returns
                       (on ave.) are not as good as trading QQQQ frequently.
                       I personally hold a few "growth" or "tech" mutual
                       funds, a few bond funds and a few mixed funds in
                       addition to a limited number of QQQQ b/c I am a very
                       risk averse investor.
                       \_ Mutual funds has higher cost.  ETF like QQQQ and/or
                          SPDR is still the best bet.
                          \_ "Best bet" is relative. QQQQ or SPDR have some-
                             what more volatility than bond funds and some
                             conservative "growth" funds.  If one is risk
                             averse, mutual funds are safer, which (imo) is
                             worth the marginally higher cost.
                             \_ not if you're in your 20s and don't need the
                                money right now.  -tom
                                \_ I disagree. I have been a conservative
                                   investor all my life (starting at age
                                   18). I may never become a millionaire,
                                   but I have also never lost any money
                                   on my safe investments (I even made an
                                   ave. of 8% during the bust years). To
                                   me, the feeling of security is worth
                                   much more than the potential "upside."
                                   Perhaps to you it is not. One size does
                                   not fit all.
                                   \_ mutual funds aren't any safer than QQQQ.
                                      \_ most do not have so much Tech.
                                   \_ I have been an agressive investor for
                                      6 years and I just made my first million.
                                      You should be a millionaire by the time
                                      you retire, at the very least.
                                      \_ You are also a bad speller, and motd
                                         entry over-writer.
        \_ FLPSX.  I used to invest on FDGFX, until I realized that FLPSX was
           doing better in both boom times and bomb times.  So I switched over.
        \_ Want to put you in touch with a financial advisor?
2006/7/21-25 [Finance/Investment, Finance/CC] UID:43759 Activity:kinda low
7/21    I understand valet tipping is now customarily $2 (up from $1).
        Is it customary to tip the valet if, let's say, there is a required
        $2.50 or $3 fee to use the valet, and you're driving let's say an
        1999 Camry?  What about required fees of $5 or higher?
        What do you do?
        \_ To avoid this stupid discussion again, look:
        \_ Generally, tips are independent of any "mandatory" charge.  A
           gratuity is a thank you for good service and is voluntary,
           I don't care what anyone says.  -John
                        \- i'm sort of curious what your actual
                           tipping range is in USA restaurants.
                           say what percentage of the time do you
                           tip under 10%? BTW, do you also consider
                           wedding gifts optional? was it holube
                           who considered wedding gifts optional
                           but considers tips "mandatory"?
                           \_ was it passb who considers "holube" a clever
                              insult?  Wedding gifts are optional if you
                              didn't attend the wedding.  -tom
                              \_ They are mandatory if you did attend?
                                 \_ By etiquette, yes.  -tom
                           john advisory: are you from SF? the situation
                           in SF has gotten sort of complicated with the
                           minimum wage law change since it doesnt have
                           a tip credit ... it basically takes money away
                           from the worst paid employees [busboys, dishwasher
                           etc] and xfers more money to the much-higher-paid
                           and certainly over minwage frontroom wait staff.
                           one restaurant owner [i think at incanto] responded
                           by creating a "mandatory" service charge, which
                           made a lot of people go insane. then again most
                           people cant think in economically rational
                           manner and people seem to have amazing ability
                           for self-serving delusion per the corkage
                           article recently discussed in the motd.
           \_ OK, we'll just cut your salary in half, then, and expect you
              to make it up on tips.  -tom
              \_ Bad example; I'm an independent consultant and if I don't
                 deliver, or provide crappy service, I don't get paid.  Why
                 should I be compelled to pay someone anything beyond the
                 indicated price if he's a surly shit?  -John
                 \_ Gee, I didn't know I could refuse to pay my independent
                    consultants if they are surly.  Does it say that in
                    your contract?
                    You are compelled to pay according to whatever the local
                    tipping rules are, because their salaries have been
                    cut with the expectation that they will make the rest
                    on tips.  The U.S. would be a better place if waiters
                    earned a real wage and tipping were truly gratuitous,
                    but they don't and it's not.  -tom
                    \_ No, you're able to not pay them if they do not
                       provide the service they are contracted to do.  In
                       the case of service personnel, part of their job
                       is to provide me with civil, competent service.  If
                       they do not, it should reflect on their earnings.  And
                       tipping is fine, it gives me a chance to stiff the
                       guy throwing a snit while serving me.  -John
                       \_ But it's not OK for someone to stiff you for
                          throwing a snit, of course.  -tom
                          \_ Apples and oranges. A waiter might get a
                             $100 tip or a $0 tip. A better waiter will
                             usually make more than a poor one. I happen
                             to think that waiters actually benefit from
                             the current system. A decent waiter can make
                             $60K/year easy. Without tips, it's probably
                             half that.
                             \- 1. the true distribution is not $100 or $0.
                                and you need to talk in terms of percentages
                                anyway. a server at a boulevard  may get
                                a $100 tip but will never ever get $0.
                                the waiter at the neighborhood pasta restaurant
                                is never ever going to get $100. so i think
                                the tip distribution has probably 90% of its
                                mass in the 12%-22% range. 2. i think tip
                                pooling among the frontroom staff is not
                                uncommon, so the poor waiter can be
                                shielded. 3. the waiters even benfitted
                                more from the fact that there is no
                                tip credit in CA when it comes to min wage
                                [this is for waiters at decent places].
                                4. i think $60k is a bit high for your
                                waiter salary estimate [do waiters
                                work 40hr weeks?].
                                See e.g.
                                work 40hr weeks?]. See e.g.
                                for some details on reasonably high end
                                restaurant operation. As well as:
                                \_ If you have a crappy waiter, SOP is to give
                                   the manager a tip and tell him to make sure
                                   the bus boy gets it.  Stiffing bus boys is
                                   king lame.  And Partha, my mom has a
                                   culinary placement company in SF, so I'm
                                   well aware of the tipping & wage situation.
                                   I'm also aware that a good waiter can pull
                                   upwards of $100k, a lot of it effectively
                                   tax free.  -John
                                   \- What percentile would you guess $60k
                                      and $100k are in terms of waiter incomes
                                      in SF?
                                   \- What fraction of waiters in SF would
                                      you say make $60k or more? $100k or more?
                                      Yes, I realize there are escalatory
                                      ways of dealing with exceptionally
                                      lame service, but I dont think most
                                      people resort do that ... and they are
                                      pretty rare events i'd say. i agree
                                      routing the tip to the mgs is a good
                                      routing the tip to the mgr is a good
                                      way to deal with the situation.
                                      [I personally weigh intentional things
                                      like snooty obnoxiousness [Aqua] more
                                      heavily than minor incompetence [dropped
                                      plate ... that stuff happens]]. I've
                                      sort of decided to put up with less
                                      deliberately bad service and walk out
                                      of places.
                                      BTW, I do agree with you than the getting
                                      rid of tipping is probably not the way
                                      to go, although I dont think the
                                      status quo is perfect. It's sort of
                                      like rent control ... there are pros
                                      and cons ... one regime not unambiguously
                                      better than the other.
                                      and cons ... one regime not "pareto
                                      superior" to the other.
                                      \_ I'm not interested in how much a
                                         waiter makes, or what percentage of
                                         waiters make >$60k (a good number in
                                         more upscale restaurants).  That is
                                         not my problem.  In a restaurant, I am
                                         paying for the experience as much as
                                         for the food.  If a waiter is being
                                         a shit (surprise, it does happen), I
                                         should make sure the owner knows this
                                         (maybe through the manager) as he has
                                         a financial stake in the business.  In
                                         the meantime, I will not give "hey,
                                         thanks, good job" money to a waiter,
                                         bellhop, cabbie or anyone else who
                                         gives me a shitty attitude (note that
                                         I'm not talking about incompetence or
                                         inexperience here.)  There is no
                                         obligation to tip, but if you feel
                                         your service was ok or better, some
                                         conventions apply.  -John
                                         \- I understand what you are saying.
                                            I am just sort of curious what
                                            %age of the time or how many times
                                            per year the service hits the
                                            threashold of not tipping,
                                            rerouting the tip etc. In the past
                                            15 years say, i can think of maybe
                                            10ish incidents ... in one case
                                            [in durant court] we left a 5cent
                                            tip that was thrown at us as we
                                            we leaving, but i really havent
                                            caused a scene in a med/highend
                                            place. [sometimes because i was
                                            somebody else guest, in other cases
                                            because the management made it up
                                            sort of [free bottle of wine] etc.
                                            if this is something you do 1-2%
                                            od the time [like inb my case],
                                            od the time [like in my case],
                                            then it's more sort of an ad hoc
                                            reaction, than your "standard
                                            behavior for bad service". i think
                                            the place where i most frquently
                                            get annoyed are bars where the
                                            bartender is lame about imple-
                                            menting FIFO. i guess i have caused
                                            a scene in a high end place but we
                                            left a very very large tip :-).
        Not often, to be honest--maybe about 10 times in the last 5 _/
        years.  I have a pretty high tolerance; usually I just leave
        a lower tip if service is really bad enough to make me notice.
        However, we frequently go to nice restaurants, and I know what I can
        expect for a given price, so I don't hesitate to ask for a different
        waiter.  I've only walked out on a place once or twice, and usually
        I'll tell the manager if something really pisses me off (normally
        they're very cool about it.)  I dislike waiters being snippy, being
        ignored, having food take a very long time even when we ask about it,
        pissy reactions when a dish isn't acceptable, and worst of all, "do
        you want your change?"  The problem is that most people feel a bit
        intimidated and think they owe the waiter something, and are afraid
        to speak up when something really sucks.  -John
        \_ Once a waitress argued with us that a certain item was not on the
           menu. We said that it was. She said it was not. We again told
           her it was. She again said it was not. We asked for the menu.
           She was wrong. This was a fairly nice restaurant (Campanile in
           LA). The manager overheard the whole thing and gave us free
           dessert. That is acceptable and she got a 15% tip. Since two
           of my sisters (and their two boyfriends) are in the restaurant
           business (GM, chef, waitress, and sommelier) in nice SF
           restaurants I can definitely say that $60K isn't a problem if
           you are experienced and that you really shouldn't leave less
           than 10% even if the service sucked. However, you should
           complain to the GM. It is the GM's job to make things right.
           Also, without tipping, I really do think waiters/waitresses
           would make a whole lot less money and as a result the quality
           of service (already poor in most cases) would get worse as
           professionals left for other jobs. Tipping works well, because
           when the restaurant does well so does everyone and when the
           restaurant does poorly then everyone suffers. No sense keeping
           waiters on at $60K+ when business is bad.
           \_ Only once in the last five years have I not tipped, and that
              was at the Grill place across the street from the Piedmont
              Landmark Theater (formerly a Rolling Dunes): the entire wait
              staff were rude and indolent. We did not tip, and we will not
              be back. --erikred
              \_ Funny, that's in my neighberhood, I go there all the time,
                 and get fine and friendly service.  Chris, the owner and
                 often bartender, is the only shop owner on the street
                 (except for the yogurt place) who knows me and greets me
                 on sight.
                 One thing to remember is that waiters have to deal with
                 obnoxious customers a lot more often than you have to
                 deal with obnoxious waiters.  We all have bad days.  -tom
                 \_ Agreed, but this was beyond the pale. This was mid-day,
                    and the fan above our table was casting a shadow that was
                    making all four of us dizzy and queasy. We asked a waiter
                    if it would be possible to turn it off; he went off to ask
                    someone, but never came back to tell us one way or the
                    other. We asked another waiter and finally the person who
                    looked like the manager at the time, and were similarly
                    blown off. At the same time, our orders arrived and were
                    wrong; even though there were only three groups of
                    customers there including us, no one ever came by to see
                    if we needed more water, more food, or even the bill. We
                    eventually went to the bar to ask for our bill, and when
                    we paid, we left no tip. Please understand, I have friends
                    who are waiters and I am sympathetic to the plight of the
                    working wait staff, but this level of silliness was
                    untenable. --erikred
           \- i think "routing around" the problem works when the problem
              is a lame/snooty/etc waiter, but there are some establishements
              that have that problem [farralon, aqua, various medium level but
              hot and packed placed in the mission], i wonder if they will do
              anything. or even at say zacharies, a place i think is sort of
              customer unfriendly. re: the "feel they owe their waiter
              something" ... i think in part they feel they will be thought
              of a cheep [perhaps "justifying" in the waiters mind thinking
              "these guys are declasse"] if they just leave a small tip without
              elaborating on the reason. and most people may not have the
              personality to say something beyond the tip.
              \_ Weird. I have been to Farralon three times and Aqua once
                 and all four times I had great service. How many times
                 have you been to Aqua? -ausman
                 \_ I, too, had superb service at Aqua the one time I went.
              \_ If you leave a 10% tip they definitely get the idea
                 that you are either dissatisfied or declasse. You have
                 to tell the manager why if you want them to know which.
                 All I am saying is that 10% is low enough that they will
                 know something's up. I know people who stiff the
                 waitstaff and I've only do that in an extreme situation
                 (e.g. the one time I was asked to not patronize a
                 particular restaurant ever again). As for Zachary's, it
                 is very unfriendly to customers. The cash only policy is
                 evidence of that.
                          \- along with no RSVP, no pitchers of soda,
                             exploiting children etc.
                 \_ Again, stiffing the "waitstaff" is lame.  The busboy
                    can't help it if the waiter's a prick.  Nor can the
                    waiter if the restaurant has crappy policies.  Use your
                    own judgment, and as psb says, let the GM know, they
                    need to be aware of this sort of stuff.  But I've been at
                    Farallon 7-8 times and never had bad service.  -John
                    \_ Tipping is fundamentally a way to enforce class
                       structure.  The wealthy (restaurant/valet/hotel/taxi
                       patrons) want to have the right to punish the servants
                       for insolence.  Look at the sense of entitlement
                       displayed in the comments in this thread; it's really
                       pretty sad.  -tom
                       \_ Uh...I want to punish someone who gives me crappy
                          service and bad attitude.  In shops, I can't do
                          this to the sales clerk directly, in restaurants I
                          can.  Don't turn this into some pseudo-Marxist class
                          warfare claptrap.  I's a not tryin to keep the po'
                          folk in they's place, just have a nice dinner
                          without some snotty shit spoiling it.  15% says
                          "you did a reasonable job, thanks".  10% = "you did
                          not do a good job."  Anything less, including 0% =
                          "you suck, fuck you."  That's my right as a
                          customer.  -John
                          \_ Ponder these two questions:
                             1) How did the tipping rules get developed in
                                the U.S.?  Why is the waiter tipped and
                                the shopkeeper not?
                             2) Why are relatively large tips customary
                                in the U.S. and generally not elsewhere?  -tom
                                \_ The shop clerk (not shopkeeper, wrong
                                   comparison) is not tipped because he is
                                   not providing a service in the same class
                                   as the waiter, shoe shine guy, taxi driver,
                                   etc.; many salesmen also get commission.
                                   \_ Commission is not the same as tipping.
                                      And what is different about the class
                                      of service being provided by a taxi
                                      driver vs. a shop clerk?  Non-circular
                                      definition, please.  -tom
                                      \_ The shop clerk is selling me an item.
                                         His manner of selling it, strictly
                                         speaking, is not part of the overall
                                         experience I am paying for.  With a
                                         waiter or cab driver, it is (how nice
                                         is the service, how smooth is the
                                         ride.)  Same with shoe-shine guys,
                                         or valets.  What's your point?  -John
                                         \_ That's a crock; plenty of shops
                                            provide personal service at or
                                            above the level of shoe-shine-boy.
                                            (Like a shoe store, for one). -tom
                          \- i agree there is something "american" about
                             the tipping system ... compared to a more
                             "socialist" system [modulo tip pooling], but
                             i think holube is overstating things. where i
                             think there is a class system is the disparity bt/
                             frontroom staff and the often minority back
                             of the house people like the dish washing crew
                             who are paid lower and certainly work hard
                             and get no part of the tip pool. under a sort
                             of rawlsian theory i'd rather see increased
                             spoils going to them rather than the wiatstaff
                             [in re: sf min wage change]. and i also think
                             at reasonable standard resturants the waitstaff
                             are not just passive agents to their fate ...
                             i think some probably consciously tailor
                             behavior to who the expect better tips from ...
                             and if they guess wrong, well they deserve to
                             lose out a bit. [i've seen white businessmen
                             in their 50s get much better service than
                             i did when in my late 20s at places like aqua.
                             analogous to the bartender who give better
                             service to hot chicks who are lousy tippers ...
                             at least in cash.]
                       \_ Hello, there is no tipping in Japan and yet the wait
                          staff are still professional and polite. I see no
                          reason to reward wait staff here who cannot do this.
                          I'm not expecting anything more than civility and
                          politeness; I'm certainly not looking for servility.
                          \_ Paying 15% in the U.S. isn't "rewarding" wait
                             staff; it's paying their wage.  More than 15%
                             could reasonably be construed as reward.  -tom
                             \_ This is an semi-invisible system in that the
                                general public is not usually made aware that
                                wait staff's salaries have been depleted to
                                the point where tips mean the difference
                                surviving or not. I agree that the situation
                                needs to fixed (i.e., adjust wages to comp),
                                but relying on customer support of an
                                unpublished system sounds broken. That said,
                                I generally tip 20%. --erikred
                                \_ It's not really an unpublished system;
                                   it's part of etiquette.  I agree that
                                   the system is untenable, and I think it's
                                   particularly onerous because it has its
                                   roots in slavery and the culture surrounding
                                   it.  I certainly don't think I get better
                                   service in the U.S. compared to overseas
                                   in countries where tipping is not
                                   customary (because they pay full wages).
                                   \_ In many other countries, being a
                                      waiter is a career choice. In the
                                      US (except at high-end restaurants)
                                      it is not. The quality of service
                                      reflects this. However, I can't say
                                      that I've gotten really great
                                      service at dive restaurants in, say,
                                      Europe either. I think your ideas
                                      about the nature of tipping are
                                      crazy. As I said before, I think
                                      most waiters make out better by
                                      earning tips than they would without.
                                   \_ It is basically unpublished. There are
                                      so many immigrants here in the bay area
                                      for example that it's not realistic to
                                      expect everyone to be on the same page
                                      wrt tipping. I see that clearly with
                                      coworkers. They have no idea. I never
                                      really analyzed it in detail either...
                                      sure you see your parents and others
                                      do the 15% thing but the details are
                                      not explained. How many people know
                                      how the tips apply to busboys? What
                                      do you do in buffet restaurants? The
                                      tipping system seems like a good one
                                      for a more homogeneously civilized
                                      society but not apropos now. (One
                                      coworker from India thought it was
                                      ok to tip almost nothing at a lunch
                                      joint. Of course he also liked to talk
                                      about the dirt-cheap food and services
                                      in India where regular engineers had
                                      full-time chauffeurs etc.)
                                      \- having a chauffeur in india is like
                                         having somebody mow your lawn here.
                                         but your major point stands: indians
                                         treat service class people like
                                         shit and tip like shit. the latter
                                         is a social norm diffcult to change
                                         but there is no excuse for the
                                         former. a dramatic case of this is
                                         how westerners and indians deal with
                                         say trekking guides and porters ...
                                         on the other hand, i think indians
                                         are often pretty low maint when it
                                         comes to "special requests".
2006/7/20-22 [Finance/Investment] UID:43748 Activity:nil
7/20    My old 401k from my old employer offers about 12 plans whereas my
        403b (I work in the government now) offers maybe 40 plans. I like
        my 403b plans a lot better and think maybe I will rollover. Is this
        a good/bad idea? Is it typical for 403b to offer more choices
        than 401k? Any advice would be appreciated, thanks!
        \_ How much do you trust the Government and the Banks to provide for
           your retirement?  As a government employee, I have decided my
           level of trust: I do not buy into any official plan, save 2/3 of
           my after tax income to cash, and spend it on supplies for the
           comming apocalypse.  Maybe you should take a look at who's calling
           the shots with the U.S.'s money and consider doing the same.
        \_ I'm not sure about that, but I do know that 403b plans are not
           allowed to match employee contributions the way most 401k plans
           do.  This sucks.  That said, my 403b plan offers 100s of
           investment plan options, although it used to only offer 10 or
           \_ matching vs. not really doesn't matter now that OP has a 403b
              job as far as rolling in is concerned.  to the OP: taxes are
              hard.  get a professional.  it'll cost you $200 at most and may
              save you many tens of thousands.
              \_ wow, so if we say some engineer is making $100K/year, that
                 $200 service may save at least $20K for that year?
                 or are you talking about dual-engineer-income?
                 \_ Not pp, but making a mistake on rolling over a
                    retirement can cost you a LOT of money on penalties.
                    Since op is asking for financial advice on motd,
                    there's a good chance op doesn't know about all the
                    possible pitfalls.
        \_ Why would you rollover into the 403b? Roll over into an IRA
           and then you'll have even *more* choices.
           \_ 2nd that suggestion
2006/7/19-21 [Science/GlobalWarming, Finance/Investment] UID:43730 Activity:nil
7/19    1927-1933 Chart of Pompous Prognosticators
        \- it's a little strange to see Irving Fischer descibed as
           "PhD in economics"
        \- it's a little strange to see Irving Fisher descibed as
           "PhD in economics" ... somewhat interestingly, his advisor
           was JWGIBBS of Gibbs Free Energy fame.
2006/7/18-20 [Finance/Investment] UID:43717 Activity:nil
7/18    GOOG will go up to 850 next summer and deflate back
        to 750 before winter.           -motd stock oracle
        \_ Why?
           (ObWhere'sShortGOOGAt100/200/300 Guy?)  -tom
           \_ If you try to reason why stock market is the way it is, you'll
              never catch the wave. The reason why it'll go up to 850 has
              nothing to do with any reasoning except for expected human
              irrationality.      -pp, hope to win the stock prediction award
              \_ *boggle* holy shit, that's stupid.
2006/7/11 [Finance/Investment, Transportation/Bicycle] UID:43631 Activity:moderate
7/11    Are there floor model bicycle pumps that can switch between high
        volumn and high pressure? I can barely pump up to 85 PSI for my bike
        and I'm wondering if they have a pump that can switch to pumping
        high pressure, like some of those fancy portable pumps. ok thx.
        \_ How would such a thing work?  PV=nRT, with n,R,T relatively
           constant.  Since the compression cylinder would have to be
           a constant volume initially, it seems like it's always going
           to be a PITA to pump to high pressure, no matter what?
        \_ Decent floor pumps don't have difficulty pumping to high pressure.
           \_ I just returned my $25 made in China pump for a $30 made in
              Germany pump. Both of them are hard to pump after 95PSI which
              was a big disappointment. It took a lot of efforts to get up
              to 115PSI. After 95PSI, if the pump handlebar isn't pressed
              down completely, the pump handle forces it to pop back up
              probably because the valve is opened up and the pressure built
              from the tire pumps the handlebar upwards! Is this normal?  -op
              \_ No, it's not normal.  I have something similar to
                 and I can easily pump to 120psi.  One thing: Presta valves
                 are much better for bikes than Schraeder (car-type) valves,
                 partly because of this specific issue.  Switch to presta if
                 you are using Schraeder now.  -tom
        \_ Force required to pump = cross section of pump * pressure
           Volume pumped = cross section * length
           Max achievable pressure = Your strength / cross section of pump.
           So you can see the only way you can get a high volume and a low
           force requirement if to have a pump change diameter as pressure
           increases.  This is not a practical design.
           \_ It's not impractical at all.  One simple way to do it is to have
              two chambers in the pump.  Use both of them for high volume/low
              pressure, or one chamber for low pressure/high volume.  In case
              you missed it, there are mini pumps on the market that
              incorporate such a feature.  There's no real point in putting
              it into a floor pump since good floor pumps are so much easier
              to use.
        \_ My favorite floor pump is the Topeak Joe Blow Pro; I find it quite
           easy to use to inflate my 120psi tires.  To give you another data
           point, I'd avoid the Silca Super Pista (people rave about how
           serviceable it is, but it requires a lot of force, and you have to
           hold the head on the valve, so you're left inflating with one hand).
2006/7/7-10 [Finance/Investment, Computer/SW/RevisionControl, Science/Space] UID:43587 Activity:nil
7/7     If the Space Shuttle has no fuel tank, how does it change course when
        it tries to leave orbit and return to earth?  Thx.
        \_ It has small thrusters on it.
           \_ Yep, they jet compressed O2, IIRC.  Basically they just nudge
              themselves "down" a bit, coast down, nose up to come in w/
              the heat tiles facing down, and then once in atmo and not falling
              like a rock can use aileron/elevators and rudder.
              \_ Those are the attitude adjustment nozzles.  It also has a
                 main deorbiting thruster that uses a small amount of rocket
        \_ for 'in-space' maneuvering, it has two different sets of rockets.
           The RCS thrusters for attitude adjustment and fine maneuvering,
           and the OMS engines (two 'medium sized' rockets on the back) for
           larger orbital adjustments.  -ERic
2006/7/2-5 [Politics/Domestic/Immigration, Finance/Investment] UID:43552 Activity:nil
7/2     The Underground Economy
2006/6/20-24 [Finance/Investment] UID:43443 Activity:nil
        I don't get it.  Why does INTC stock stay relatively flat / decline
        after a big brokerage changes the rating from Neutral to Buy, and
        increases the price target from $21 to $23?  All the major indices
        are up too.
        \_ I don't think too many investors care about the ratings. I know
           I don't.
2006/6/2-4 [Politics/Domestic/California, Finance/Investment] UID:43256 Activity:nil
6/2     Zinc.
        \_ 65% of the people think the penny should be eliminated. Yay!
           Now if only they can turn dollar bills into loonies and two
           dollars into toonies, that'd be cool too.
        \_ profit-making scheme:
           buy pennies for one cent each
           sell them for their zinc
        \_ Mark Weller tells us
           "Americans want pennies"
           Backed by zinc lobby
        \_ behold the penny
           heavy, useless currency
           uses too much zinc
        \_ we are galvanized
           in our monetary aim
           turn all bills to zinc
        \_ Modernization
           Of legal tender permits
           No place for pennies
           \_ In the current thread
              This haiku does not belong
              No mention of zinc
2006/5/17-22 [Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Finance/Investment] UID:43084 Activity:nil
5/17    Case against Jeff Skilling and Ken Lay of Enron goes to jury.
        Predictions?  Skilling faces 31 counts, Lay faces 7, including
        securities and wire fraud (fraudulent SEC reports and financial
        constructs, lying to analysts and employees about health of company),
        insider trading (Skilling only, selling $62.6 million in shares after
        he quit when he allegedly knew it was a house of cards), and false
        statements (to Big5 companies and banks). (
        \_ chance of a Bush pardon?
           \_ With extremely low approval ratings and the midterm elections
              coming up, is he really that dumb?  Wait, don't answer that.
              \_ But..but approval polls *have no relevance whatsoever*!
                 MOTD told me so!  Waaahhh!
           \_ I'll be $10 against a Bush pardon, anyone wanna take it?
2006/5/14-18 [Finance/Investment] UID:43052 Activity:nil
5/14    What is really going on with the $US? Like, what happened on
        March 22? I was looking into diversifying currency but volatility
        like this is scary.
        \_ Investing in money is dumb.  If you want to invest against the
           dollar invest in foreign stocks/funds.
        \_ It's about what it was a year ago.
        \_ That's because I decided to go to Iceland (really).
           \_ Did you turn gay like that gay icelander video?
                \_ Can't keep a secret on soda, fuck, who ratted me out!
                   No, I'll just be visiting for a few days, to the blue
                   lagoon and the capital.
2006/5/9-14 [Finance/Investment] UID:42996 Activity:nil
5/9     Explanation of the recent I-bond rate change (
2006/5/8-12 [Finance/Investment] UID:42984 Activity:nil
5/8     U.S. dollar in freefall.  Whee!
        \_ While the graph looks pretty, I don't know that I'd actually call
           0.835 - 0.785 = 0.05 in 3 months "freefall"
           \_ That's 6% loss in 3 months, which if continues is 24% over a year.
              This blows away gains from any CD's.
2006/5/4-5 [Finance/Investment] UID:42926 Activity:nil
5/4     Should pennies be taken out of circulation? Pros/cons?
        \_ Absolutely.  They're a nuisance.  Further, dollar bills should
           be taken out and replaced with dollar coins.  Dollar bills are
           very inefficient currency:  it costs a lot of money to print them
           and replace them since they wear out so fast.  Coins last 20+
        \_ Who cares?
        \_ I think all coins should be replaced with paper money of equal
           denominations. Why? Bills are easier to carry in a typical wallet.
           Most wallets sold these days don't seem to have a compartment for
           coins. Those that do have it usually get torn down eventually with
           the metal coins. Besides, paper money is cheaper to print.
           coins. Those that do have it usually get torn down eventually due
           to friction. Besides, paper money is cheaper to print.
           \_ The coin lobby comes from the vending machine industry.
              They're the ones that pushed for the dollar coin.
           \_ Replace it by living-torg.  -John
        \_ I think the correct answer is non-physical money.  We're at the
           point where the cost to build out the infrastructure is less
           than the cost of counting coins.
           \_ There are too many arguments against exclusively electronic
              currency to count.  Privacy concerns aside, your argument
              assumes universal good infrastructure and similar price and
              profit levels for all businesses, disregards the need for
              failsafe mechanisms (power outages?) and doesn't consider that
              currency isn't just used in its country of origin.  -John
        \_ Yes.  Seriously, 1 cent?  Zimbabwe doesn't even bother to make
           anything smaller than their $500 bill!
        \_ We should re-value the currency. Well, issue new currency
           that is worth 10 times the old. So newDollar = $10old, and
           newDime = $1old. This would be too expensive. But it would be
           nice. We could go back to 10 cent hamburgers, and a decent
           car would cost $2000. The American people would be psychologically
           rejuvenized! And the economy would get a kick in the pants from
           extra spending. This plan is the best. But sadly it will never
           be followed.
2006/5/3-4 [Politics/Foreign, Finance/Investment] UID:42910 Activity:nil
5/3     Government getting in the way of free trade, *again*
2006/4/21-25 [Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Finance/Investment] UID:42792 Activity:nil
4/21    That's some pretty awesome fox polling there...
        \_ Aww.  They didn't have "Religion/Christian Morals" as an option in
           the list of reasons to disapprove of the President.
2006/4/5-6 [Finance/Investment] UID:42680 Activity:nil
4/1     Got this email from Etrade saying that based on my Etrade banking
        activities I'm now qualified as a special trader and can trade
        stocks for a very low price. "To continue your exclusive status
         beyond next quarter, just maintain a $50,000 combined balance in
         linked E*TRADE Securities and E*TRADE Bank accounts or execute 30
         or more stock or options trades by the end of the quarter."
        Thirty stocks? What? Fuck Etrade Bank and fuck Etrade stocks.
        \_ Special deals for rich people and day traders.  What's the big deal?
        \_ And if you want to transfer the money out of your account (i.e.,
           close it) E-Trade will happily charge you a $100 transfer fee.
           Buyer beware.
        \_ I dumped etrade for scottrade/(datek->ameritrade) a few years
           ago.  etrade is more expensive and service is worse, and they
           often screw things up.
        \_ E*Trade is better than some other brokerages out there.
           E*Trade is not that bad.  Also, the offer above says OR.
2006/3/30-31 [Politics/Domestic/Immigration, Reference/Law/Visa, Finance/Investment] UID:42535 Activity:nil
        I personally don't care about the immigration issue but I'd like
        to buy stocks in companies that make fences. What are some
        companies I should look into?
2006/3/27-29 [Finance/Investment] UID:42479 Activity:kinda low
3/27    Why must interest rates increase by 1/4%? Why don't they just
        get it over with and hike it 1/2% at a time, or in the case of
        dot-com and real-estate bubble, hike it to the level that they
        think it should be more quickly?
        split up into three pieces
        split up into three pieces and Iran and Turkey is redrawing their
        \_ They don't have to increase by 1/4%.  If they felt it were
           appropriate, they could increase it by more (or less, e.g. 1/8%).
           The Federal Reserve tries to `herd' (in the herding cats sense of
           the word) the economy by adjusting the supply of money.  This
           requires kid gloves.  If they cranked up interest rates by a larger
           value (say 1%), it could set of panics in financial markets which
           would have serious, likely unpleasant, ripple effects in the
           national and global economy. -dans
           \_ They also don't raise it all at once, because they need to
              keep the market offbalance. If they raised it 1% then the
              market would assume that it was all done and act
              accordingly. Monetary policy often works best when the
              market isn't sure what's coming.
              \_ These are not serious answers. I can recommend a
                 book to you if you would like but I cannot write
                 a motd entry on how the Fed works.
                 a motd entry on how the Fed works. Consider this analogy:
                 if you have 3 passengers in your car and your are coming up
                 to a red light, eventhough everybody knows you are going
                 to stop and could brace themeslves for a studden stop,
                 you deaccelerate slowly. BTW, Milton Friedman also has a
                 funny analogy about backseat driving and monetary policy.
                 (google for Lerner, friedman, steering wheel monetary policy)
                 \_ Au contraire. Market psychology is a very important
                    reason why rates are not moved all at once. The market
                    tends to overreact/underreact to major policy moves.
                    That is *why* they accelerate/decelerate slowly. It's
                    not just about avoiding shocks to the economy, but
                    also managing market psychology. If you knew that
                    tomorrow would be the last of the rate hikes then
                    you'd behave differently than you would if you weren't
                    sure of the final outcome. How often is it that
                    anticipated rate hikes are already priced into the
                    market? How does that compare to a sudden shift in
                    policy? Which one moves the markets more and has a
                    larger effect? Of course, it's not necessarily
                    desirable to have a large effect (up or down) but
                    neither is it desirable to have nil effect with policy
                    moves. Monetary policy has a stronger effect when the
                    market doesn't expect it.
                    BTW, this is a good article:
                    \- that is not the only reason they react slowly. large
                       change in the money supply has real effects, not
                       just effects based on expectations. it is a long
                       standing debate whether the fed should play this game
                       and react with discretion or whether they should
                       publish a formula and pretty much react in a deterministic
                       fashion to other variables. the interest rate is not
                       something announced like the price apple announces
                       it will sell a computer at. it is the side effect
                       of open mkt operations [for now i elide issues of
                       defensive and dynmaic FOMC operations and discount
                       rate and fed funds rate ... the fed has multiple
                       competing goals after all, including real factors
                       like growth and high employment, macro econ factors
                       like i-rate and inflation/price stability, and then
                       financial mkt issues: stability of mkt and FX stability
                       (changes in i-rate in high K mobility world generates
                       large in/out flows with effects on $ exchange rate ...
                       not an issue when the fed got rolling, but big issue
                       today). anyway, psychology and your theory of "rat
                       expectations" may play a big role in the financial
                       mkt areas, but the "real effects" are significant too.
                       BTW, the Fed pretty much has an infinite budget, so
                       if you want publications from them, the will send you a
                       lot of interesting stuff for free. the SF Fed may be
                       a good place for you real estate people to look at.
                       i dont read the stuff any more, but that is something
                       the traditionally have good analsysis of. BTW, speaking
                       of Rat X on sloda, isnt aswan@sloda friends with either
                       EPRESCOTT or TSARGENT?
                       \_ I didn't mean to claim that rational expectations
                          are the sole reason. They are one factor. A
                          bunch of small rate hikes prove to be more
                          effective than one hike of the same size. There
                          are other reasons, of course.
2006/3/21-22 [Finance/Investment] UID:42351 Activity:nil
3/21    Okay, why is yahoo finance letting this Robert Kiyosaki guy be their
        columnist?  His writing riles people which is kind of fun. But then
        this guy doesn't know if you owe a debt in US$, and US$ goes down in
        value, it's actually good for you, and he still goes to outlets to
        buy gold and silver when you can buy GLD: "The outlets that sell gold
        and silver I have visited are already low on inventory."  Isn't that
        kind of embarassing for a supposed financial guru?  No wonder people
        say he is a con man and he made all his money not through investing,
        but from giving investment advice.
        \_ Because Kiosaki is a financial wizard. Several years ago he
           started seminars that encouranged people to flip homes, lots and
           lots of homes. He started many investment clubs and spun off
           THOUSANDS of investment clubs in the country where people
           bought properties for the sole purpose of investment, and those
           who followed his advice did very well. To many new millionaires
           who followed his advice, he is a hero. People look up to
           Kiosaki because he is financial leader, a financial hero, a
           financial trendsetter. PS I attended his seminar last year and
           he said something to the effect that real estate is still hot in
           some areas but we gotta be looking for the next thing. You have
           to attend his other seminar to know what that is. Oh yeah, thanks
           for reminding me I need to register.       -the next millionaire
           \_ Fuck you.  People like you are the reason people like me buy
              land in remote places and stockpile weapons.
           \_ but it seems to me that if he's only encouraging people
              to get into gold and silver now, he's at best a financial
              follower as opposed to a trendsetter.
              \_ This kind of thing is usually evidence that the trend is
                 almost over. I am selling my gold and silver stock.
        \_ Suze Orman gave some bad advice based on math that didn't work
           once all factors were accounted for. When I tried to call her on
           it, I couldn't find any way to contact her. These people are
           there for entertainment value, I suppose.
           \_ "These people" is rather dismissive, don't you think?  There
              are certainly good financial columnists out there.  It is true
              that Yahoo gets paid by you reading the article, not by you
              making money, so in some sense the corporation doesn't care if
              the advice is good.  -tom
              \_ It's intended to be dismissive. Giving out bad financial
                 advice and then making yourself unavailable for criticism
                 or comment is irresponsible. There are people out there
                 that consider 'these people' to be gurus and who take
                 what they say at face value. It doesn't mean all their advice
                 is bad, of course.
                 \_ my point is that Suze Orman was irresponsible, not
                    "financial columnists" as a class of people.  The
                    Motley Fool columnists, in particular, are quite
                    accountable for their positions.  -tom
                    \_ I don't know if they are accountable, but many
                       of their recent picks sucked big time.
                        eg. snda, nile
                       But I agree.  There are some good columnists
                       (eg. smartmoney columnists ain't bad).  I even
                       think Jim Cramer is pretty good.  -op
                       \_ Remember that it's always possible to do good
                          analysis and still be wrong, especially in
                          the short term.  -tom
2006/3/6-8 [Finance/Investment] UID:42110 Activity:moderate
3/6     Where's Swami? We owe Swami a beer.
        "Housing Slowdown Ripples Through Economy"
        \_ "There seems to be little concern that a much-touted
            housing bubble will lead to a collapse in sales and prices."
            \_ We need an equivalent of
            \_ Which contradicts what a lot of other articles are saying,
               but whatever.  I recommend
            \_ it depends on what the meaning of "collapse" is
        \_ "Alex Barron, an analyst in San Francisco for JMP Securities, said
            builder stocks have been trading at relatively low multiples of
            their earnings since the late 1990s because investors always
            believed the strong housing market was too good to last."
            Investors kept saying, 'Next year housing will go down,'" Barron
            said. "I guess they're finally right."
            Tell us something we haven't been predicting (incorrectly) for
            a long time now.
            \_ Swami is not the "investors" this guys is talking about.
               Swami made just one specific prediction: peak in Q4 2005,
               nadir in Nov 2007.
               \_ Yeah, so he is late with his prediction.
        \_ So if I keep saying "oil > $80 barrel next year" every year, do I
           get a beer when it finally happens?
           \_ No, because you chose a specific number, which might make your
              prediction useful to someone.  You'd have to say something more
              like "oil will be more expensive next year" to really match
              the brilliance of dim.  -tom
              \_ warren buffet gave no specific number or date when he says
                 he avoids tech, but he still comes out looking pretty
                 good when the tech bubble bursts.  his opinion, if followed,
                 would've been useful for all those people who lost money.
                 \_ Warren Buffett has never said to avoid tech.  He said
                    that *he* avoids tech because he doesn't understand it.
                    (That is, he doesn't understand how to fairly value
                    tech companies).
                    And you know, if you bought tech any time from, oh,
                    1970 up through 1998, or from 2001 on, you're probably
                    doing pretty well.  -tom
                    \_ yes, during the bubble years, warren buffet says
                       he avoids tech.  that's what I was saying.
                       \_ What you're saying is a non sequiteur; Buffett
                          is not making a prediction when he says he avoids
                          tech.  -tom
                          \_ and I am just pointing out to you that
                             what you accused dim of doing (not attaching
                             a "specific number") is just what buffet
                             does, which is a very reasonable thing to
                             do.  And it is also useful, since if you
                             take what he is saying into consideration
                             and reduced your exposure to tech, you would
                             have emerged from the bubble in a better
                             \_ You're not paying attention.  Buffett is not
                                making a prediction, so of course he doesn't
                                attach a number to his non-existent
                                prediction.  Please find a quote where
                                Buffett tells *other people* to avoid
                                tech.  Buffett avoided tech in 1990, too,
                                and if you invested in tech in 1990 you'd
                                have done better than Buffett.  -tom
                                \_ You're not paying attention.  Nobody
                                   claimed that Buffett was making a
                                   prediction.  Go reread.  Also, you can
                                   chart BRK-A against
                                   Nasdaq since 1990 and you will see BRK-A
                                   leading all the way except for a small
                                   approximately one year period centered
                                   around mid-2000.  You should do some
                                   research so you don't continuously
                                   make wrong claims like the above or
                                   like "Median sale prices [of homes]
                                   go down in 4Q *every year*".
                                   around mid-2000.
                                \_ "Buffett avoided tech in 1990, too,
                                   and if you invested in tech in 1990
                                   you'd have done better than Buffett."
                                   Talking about ill-defined un-specific
                                   claims, the above fits the bill
              \_ I didn't make any predictions. I just know the market
                 has been overvalued for some time now. --dim
                 \_ is that why it's gone up 40% in the past two years?
                    \_ you're such an idiot
                 \_ BTW, I read a Roper poll which said that 78% of
                    investors feel homes are overvalued. This this swami
                    those polled feel homes are overvalued, including
                    72% of those who already own a home. This swami
                    guy isn't exactly out on a limb here. --dim
2006/3/4-6 [Finance/Investment, Recreation/Travel/LasVegas] UID:42098 Activity:nil
3/4     Bond to drive a Mondeo in Casino Royale:,,2-2006100330,00.html
2006/3/3-6 [Reference/RealEstate, Finance/Investment] UID:42094 Activity:nil
3/3     ARMS and Subprime mortages increasing to record levels.
              %ARMS %subprime
        2003    28%      9.9%
        2004    48%     22.2%
        2005    47%     24.3% (wsj)
        In same link, greenback will fall 20% if OPEC switches crude
        currency to basket (US$, EURO, Yen, pound).
        \_ I guess we'll have to take your word for it since the link
           is behind a pay wall.
        \_ sweet! come on housing bubble!!
2006/2/28-3/2 [Finance/Investment] UID:42030 Activity:nil 76%like:42024
2/28    New record of U.S. investment in foreign stock exchanges,0,5874122.story
        \_ welcome to the global economy.
        \_ Trading deficit of $900 billion in 2006 means that foreigners will
           have to buy up all of our assets unless they actually believe we
           intend to actually pay back our debts.
           \_ You're confusing the national debt and deficit with the trade
              deficit. Trade deficits do not automatically equal the U.S.
              owing foreigners money.
2006/2/28-3/2 [Reference/Tax, Finance/Investment] UID:42028 Activity:low
2/28    What's a good "next step up" from high-yield (4-5%) savings accounts
        if I want something to invest, say, $50k in and still keep it fairly
        liquid and still have little to no risk (i.e. I'm OK with !FDIC if
        it's a biggish institution and not too likely to fold).  By "fairly
        liquid" I mean no more than a year lock-in.
        \_ I have some I-bonds that are pulling in 6-7% a year.  I bought
           those a few years ago though, and I think they've been dropping
           the yield in recent years.
           the yield in recent years.  Oh, and they're fed tax free too.
                \_ Don't you have to pay taxes when they adjust the principal?
                   \_ Woops.  I got it the other way around.  No state tax,
                      and fed tax deferred until either bond redeemed or
                      annually--your choice--and not on adjusting the principal.
                   \_ No, that is for TIPS.
           \_ I bonds deduct 3 months interest if you sell before 5 years,
              so that's a minus for the op since he wants less than 1 year
        \_ probably more risk than you would like but I like FAX (asian bonds
           close end fund) recommended by Bill Gross (king of bonds).  It
           yields 6.87% and is currently 4.68% below its net asset value.
           \_ 6.87 taxable w/ risk vs. 6.73 state-tax free no-risk (I Bond)..
              meh.  What does "4.68% below..." mean?
              \_ well, I Bond yield is inflation dependent and may go down,
                 so it is not risk free.  4.68% below nav means that the
                 fund is trading at a value that is 4.68% below the total
                 value of the bonds it holds.  of course FAX also has
                 exchange rates risk.  you should probably only buy it
                 if you think the dollar is going to fall, or you want
                 to diversify your currency risks.  I personally think
                 the dollar will fall, so I especially like FAX.  In the
                 scenario that FAX returns to NAV, and dollar falls, I
                 could get 15% return.
                   - I bond holder who suggested I bonds on the motd
                     a few months ago.
           \_ I'm a big fan of FAX too.  I'm curious though, where are you
                getting the "*currently* 4.68% below its net asset value"?
                I know they mention it periodically, but is there some way
                to check at any given point (they have way too many holdings
                to calculate it yourself) -crebbs
                \_  it's down to 4.35% now.  I recently
                   found out that IFN is 30% above NAV.  I am going to sell
                   IFN and get MINDX or maybe IBN (ICICI) to stay exposed
                   to India.  IIF is also 15-20% above NAV so it's not much
                   \_ Funny, I was just yesterday showing a buddy of mine
                      a comment that IFN was 30% over NAV and that he should
                      short it.  How do they manage a 9% dividend at that
                      pemium? are they really holding assest that pay well
                      over 9% divedends on average??  Anyway, thanks for the
                      over 9% dividends on average??  Anyway, thanks for the
                      link.  Email me and tell me who you are if you don't
                      mind being bugged once in a while about this kind of
                      thing.  -crebbs
                      \_ feel free.  good for me to have someone to bounce
                         one's investment ideas off too.  I have a rather
                         patchy record with shorting.  I recently tried
                         shorting GM; it promptly appreciated 20% but
                         later fell back, so I am now even.  Do you think
                         I should be glad I didn't lose money and run, or
                         keep the short?  - ecchang
                         \_I would be terrified of shorting GM.  The funds
                           seem to be sticking with them.  The gubmnt could
                           come to their rescue (again).  Despite their
                           dire straights and massive debt, I think that's
                           a scary play.  But I pretty much only take
                           short positions in combo with long.  For exmple
                           I shorted 3dfx and went long with NVDA back in
                           the day. </brag> -crebbs
                           \_ my thinking with regard to GM is that there
                              is something fundamentally wrong with GM
                              that cannot be fixed without going into
                              bankruptcy.  yes there may be short term
                              gains but it won't last.  question is
                              whether one can hold through those gains.
                              But you may be right, the risks are pretty
                              high, especially given how far GM has
                              fallen already.
                              NVDA is another of my bad shorts.  I shorted
                              it around 21 and it went up to 26 at which
                              point, I gave up.  After I gave up, it
                              dropped all the way to 10.  This was in
                              mid 2004, I think, when ATI is kicking
                              NVDA's butt when NVDA is having production
                              and heat issues with their chips.  What's
                              worse is that I then missed NVDA's runup
                              from 10 to the current 48.  ugh!
                                                            - ecchang
        \_ How about T-Bills?  If I read this right, you can go in for a
           month and make > 4% state-tax free?  Am I reading that wrong?
           What's the catch?  -op
2006/2/28 [Finance/Investment] UID:42024 Activity:nil 76%like:42030
2/28    New record in investments in foreign stock exchanges,0,5874122.story
2006/2/25-27 [Finance/Investment] UID:42005 Activity:moderate
2/24    Another case of rich fat cats raping your average Americans.
        Unregulated free market capitalism at its best!: (buyout firms raping hardworking
        \_ You know, it's really old news when Hollywood has made films about
           it 10 years ago.
           \_ I applaud Forbes magazine for standing up to their corporate
              masters.  I think the WSJ news section had a similar article
              a few weeks ago.  There was probably an accompanying rant
              in the WSJ editorial page about the poor oppressed
              private equity firm.  Anyway it's just another reason
              I welcome our new financial robotic overlords.
           \_ Hey smartass, this is a new and bigger wave.
           \_ Don't be an idiot. This is a new and bigger wave.
              And the guys in the 80s don't gut the companies they
              acquire, put all the money in their pockets, and let
              the companies go backrupt, screwing the employess and
              stealing from the creditors.  This is outright
              thievery.  Articles condemning it must be widely
              read, and until the problem is fixed, we must continue
              to pursue it and not let the crooks get away with it,
              just like we don't let crooks like Ken Lay, Jeff Skilling
              and Bernard Ebbers get away.  Are you related to one of
              these crooks yourself?
              the companies go backrupt.
              \_ Ken Lay et al were found through the judicial process to
                 have broken laws.  If these buy out firms have acted
                 illegally, then by all means they should be prosecuted.
                 So has any of these firms been charged for their misdeeds?
              \_ Dividend recap schemes are pretty old news too.  Here's
                 a BofA article about it from a
                 couple years ago.
                 \_ June 2004?  that's relatively recent.
                 \_ June 2004?  that's relatively recent. But what has
                    dividend recap got to do with the discussion above?
2006/2/23 [Finance/Investment] UID:41971 Activity:nil
        Average American Family Income Declines. Bushconomy at work!
2006/2/21-23 [Finance, Finance/Investment] UID:41937 Activity:nil
2/21    "The official poverty level is $19,307 for a family of four, $12,334
        for a family of two. But the calculation includes only cash income
        before deductions for taxes. It excludes capital gains and it does not
        take into account accumulated wealth or assets, such as a home."
        \_ it depends on what the meaning of "poor" is
           "the bureau said the rate might be as high as 19.4 percent, or as
           low as 8.3 percent, depending on how income and basic living costs
           were defined"
2006/2/18-19 [Finance/Investment] UID:41919 Activity:kinda low
2/17    George Soros is a loser. He made big money just one time but has
        made countless mistakes afterwards. Anyways, he predicts
        a huge recession in 2007 that'll make the late 80s
        recession look tame. Let's see if he's wrong. Again.
        \_ Let's assume he's right. What does he want us to do? What
           can we do? What's the best way to profit?
           \_ Buy land with access to fresh water, and lots of guns.
           \_ short GOOG!!! short everything!!1!
           \_ He wants you to take your money out of the US to make it a
              self fulfilling prophecy so he can make another few billion
              in exchange for providing no return value to the world.
           \_ If you sell all your stocks and buy I-Bonds or something
              like that, you should be able to ride it out fine.
        \_ nah soros made big money quite a few times.
2006/2/14-15 [Finance/Investment] UID:41847 Activity:moderate
2/14    Poll: favorite stock that you own.  Must have market cap > $200Mil:
        (ETFs okay):
        \_ GOOG: .
        \_ CRXL: .
        \_ MRVL, MSPD
        \_ WAG:  .
        \_ EFII: .
        \_ AAPL: .
        \_ EWZ: .
        \_ AMD: .
        \_ CSCO: .
        \_ Yay, its back to 1999.  Can we at least wait for the housing bubble
           to burst before ushering in the next stock one?
           \_ if you hate bubbles, you can always do the hedge fund long short
              market neutral thing.
           \_ if you hate bubbles, you can always try the hedge fund long short
              market neutral strategy.
2006/2/6-7 [Finance/Investment] UID:41717 Activity:moderate
2/6     My brother got married recently and they insisted they didn't want
        anything and refused to register anywhere.  Obviously I have to get
        something, but since they're poor the most practical thing would be
        cash.  If I have lots of disposable income and make $X/yr, what is a
        good amount for a wedding present?
        \_ make an Indecent proposal.
        \_ $X
        \_ Not knowing any of you, I'd say a few hundred bucks.  Don't shame
           them by giving a large amount.  By not accepting anything they're
           saying to the world, "This is true love, we're not getting married
           to scam you out of some gifts"
           \_ agree.  couple hundred bucks is good enough.  anything more than
              that is going to be too offensive... unless you sure he doesn't
        \_ how poor are they? i'm sure there's something that he could use,
           be it a DSL subscription, or a computer, or porn DVDs (being a
           computer nerd, it makes sense to get him those things) or even
           something like repairs for his beat up corolla. That way, you're
           not giving him charity (which he already said he doesn't want),
           you're thinking about him (and his wife, i guess). you could even
           get him something like a Safeway gift card, and say it's because
           you didn't know what kind champagne he liked.
        \_ Miss Manners says that's it's rude to tell people that you don't
           want gifts; it's the giver's choice what to give.  If your
           brother wants to be insulted at generosity, that's his problem.
           \_ Who cares about MM? What does Emily Post have to say?
           \_ Ironic that you'd be a MM reader.
              \_ Have you read Miss Manners at all?  She does the best
                 smack-downs of any columnist this side of Savage Love.  -tom
                 \_ Yes, I have.  As I said.  Ironic.
        \_ give them stock or a savings bond.  i got the latter several
           times as a kid and it's good karma.
           \_ A small quantity of stock is just a pain in the as for
              somebody who isnt an invester. Just give cash if you are
              somebody who isnt an investor. Just give cash if you are
              thinking this route or a gift certificate to Amazon.
              In fact just ignore all the other advice except maybe the
              trip if you have a good idea there and get them Amazon.
              \_ that makes a lot of sense.  i like amazon certificates. -pp
                 \- yes i know that. i get an AMAZONG CREDIT for all
                    my associate who have new children.
        \_ A good gift is a trip somewhere. Where are they honeymooning?
        \_ If they're serious about not receiving gifts and you're serious
           about giving, you can always donate money to some reasonable
           charity in their name.
        \_ give them stock or something.  i never did something like that,
           but it sounds like it'd work great if i were into that.  savings
           bonds are for kids, but might be appropriate if you think they're
           addiction-prone or won't know how to sell stock.  they'll probably
           realize they can take you out for a nice dinner if they ever sell.
           \_ I got married 6 months ago and suggested people do this. -bz
        \_ How about just taking your brother out, telling him over a beer
           that you'd like to do something nice for them (it is possible to
           tell someone that you are financially well off and would like to
           share in a non-arrogant way) and just ask him straight-out in
           private what he'd like?  And Miss Manners can bite my ass.  -John
           \_ He lives 300 miles away, makes himself difficult to contact,
              and has been delicately asked this a few times already. -op
              \_ Just a thought -- if they intend to procreate, and
                 depending on how much you want to spend, consider opening
                 a trust fund (cash, bonds, whatever) for the kid.  -John
        \_ A few casino chips
        \_ Toaster!
2006/2/3-7 [Finance/Banking, Finance/Investment] UID:41688 Activity:nil
2/3     US wage growth not keeping pace with inflation
        \_ CEOs wages are, everyone else doesn't deserve it.  Work harder,
2006/2/1-3 [Finance/Investment] UID:41659 Activity:kinda low
2/1     Hello, I used to have Fidelity 401K when I worked at this company.
        The plan had about 20 not so spectacular mutual funds. I'm now
        working at a place where they use 403B and have over 100 mutual
        funds... also using Fidelity. I'm tempted to transfer ALL of
        the 401K over to my new 403B plan which includes specific foreign,
        utility, and energy mutual funds. Is this a good/bad idea?
        Any advice? ok thx.
        \- helo, pp is not me. ok tnx.
        \_ you can transfer to an IRA from a brokerage.  But be careful
           to do it correctly or you will get a tax hit.  Fidelity
           can convert it to a regular IRA where you can choose any
           funds that Fidelity sells.
        \_ You can transfer to any brokerage.  Make sure you do a
           direct transfer where the money goes directly from the
           401k to the brokerage, or you may get a tax hit like
           the above poster mentioned.  Money I manage myself
           consistently beat the meagre selections my 401k offers
           by 20 percentage points, so I couldn't wait to transfer
           the money out everytime I change job, which unfortunately
           hasn't been very often.
           \_ My company's 401K plan has a "fund" that lets individuals choose
              what to invest on with their money in the accounts.  You can
              short GOOG or buy bonds or whatever.
              \_ You usually cannot short or buy derivatives in a
                 retirement account. I don't know any brokerages that
                 allow this.
                \_ <DEAD><DEAD> allowed you to sell covered calls in IRA 5
                   yrs ago when I was investigating. --oj
                   \_ They don't now.
2006/1/31-2/1 [Finance/Investment] UID:41629 Activity:low
        Like I said, fuck Greenspan.
        \_ Jim Bunning?  You must not have been paying attention to his
           re-election.  Check out [Wapo].  I wouldn't
           use him as an authority if I were you.
        \_ He is responsible for the stock market bubble, soaring
           home prices and record consumer debt because he was to quick
           to raise rates?
           \_ Greedy people with too much money and not enough brains are
              responsible for the stock bubble.  Consumer debt is the fault of
              consumers (shocking, eh?) while rising home prices are the end
              result of many factors coming together such as the drop in the
              market, speculation, low rates, demographics, green lining, and
              probably a bunch of other things.
              \_ While consumer debt is the fault of consumers, yes, there are
                 plenty of enablers out there.  Not giving beer to alcoholics
                 seems like a straightforward idea.  How about not extending
                 easy credit to the irresponsible?
                 \_ Yeah, prohibition sure worked out great.  And so's that
                    "war on drugs".
2006/1/29-31 [Science/GlobalWarming, Finance/Investment] UID:41589 Activity:nil
1/28    Debate on Climate Shifts to Issue of Irreparable Change
2006/1/27 [Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Finance/Investment] UID:41565 Activity:nil
        "The Department of Commerce report showed that the nation's economy
        grew at an anemic 1.1 percent -- the worst performance in three years."
        U.S. GDP growth (from preceding period)
                Q1      Q2      Q3      Q4
        2002    2.7     2.2     2.4     0.2
        2003    1.7     3.7     7.2     3.6
        2004    4.3     3.5     4.0     3.3
        2005    3.8     3.3     4.1     1.1
2006/1/26-29 [Finance, Finance/Investment] UID:41559 Activity:low
1/26    New report looks at where the growth in incomes of high-income
        families has outpaced that of middle- and low-income households.
        \_ The rich get richer faster than the middle and lower classes.
           \_ The aggregation of wealth at the top is driving the middle
              class into the working poor category.
              \_ Aggregation?  No.  Middle class people making less compared
                 to cost of living (housing and medical in particular)
                 combined with a chronic inability to stop spending money
                 on crap they don't need drives down middle class real
                 adjusted worth.  It can't last and it isn't surprising.
2006/1/19-21 [Finance/Investment] UID:41433 Activity:moderate
        4/10 Playboy models outperform 11705/11739 equity mutual fund
        managers for picking out better stocks.
        \_ All that says is that the companies that Playboy models know are
           doing well at the moment.  Let's continue the experiment for 10 years
           and see who's ahead.  (Not that I'm a fan of fund managers, but the
           conclusions here are silly.)
        \_ Mutual fund managers are not free to choose whatever companies they
           think will do best.  Fund manager can only choose companies within
           the fund's sector.  A real estate fund can't buy MSFT, for example.
           The playboy models don't have this limitation.
        \_ I didn't know there are so many PB models that aren't blonde.
           The Playboy models don't have this limitation.
           \_ If you thought about this a little bit, you'd realize how silly
              this theory is.
              \_ Care to explain?
                 \_ From a description of Magellan's strategy:
                    "Normally invests primarily in common stocks of domestic
                    and foreign issuers. Invests in either 'growth' stocks or
                    'value' stocks or both."  I guess the bunnies can invest
                    in non-growth, over-priced stocks and Magellan might not.
                    Even not knowing any specific example, you should realize
                    that if picking whatever from wherever is a superior way to
                    invest, then there would be funds to exploit that.
                    \_ Morningstar categorizes FMAGX as large blend.  "While
                       the investment objective stated in a fund's prospectus
                       may or may not reflect how the fund actually invests,
                       the Morningstar category is assigned based on the
                       underlying securities in each portfolio."
                       \_ The category is descriptive rather prescriptive,
                       \_ The category is descriptive rather than prescriptive,
                          which is exactly what Morningstar said.
                    \_ Even not knowing any specific example, you should
                       realize that if the Playboy models really can do better
                       than the mutual fund managers out there, they would all
                       become mutual fund managers.
                       \_ Yes.  However, the original claim was not that the
                          bunnies were necessarily better pickers but that
                          they had more freedom in choosing stocks.  Therefore,
                          your point, while valid, does not apply.  Whereas
                          showing that non-specifically targeted mutual funds
                          should and do exist does apply.
        \_ I didn't know there are so many PB models that aren't blond.
        \_ I don't think the all of the fund managers of the 11739 funds have
           \_ Almost none of them are. Hair dye.
              \_ I guess dyeing blond doesn't make one stupid, unlike natural
        \_ I don't think all of the fund managers of the 11739 funds have
           Harvard MBAs.
        \_ Long-term everyone reverts to the mean, unless you have
           insider information.
        \_ The fund contestants are "all funds listed on Morningstar".  How
           are the model contestands picked?
2006/1/11-12 [Finance/Investment] UID:41335 Activity:moderate
        Hello Kitty, Hello Profit!
        \_ What does "PK" in ticker symbols stand for?  I notice that when
           companies go down, their ticker symbols are appended with ".PK".
           \_ That means they're traded on "the pink sheets"; not listed on
              a major exchange.  -tom
              \_ Hmm, in Cantonese "PK" stands for "Poke Kai" which is a much
                 better description of those companies.  :-)))
2006/1/10-12 [Finance, Finance/Investment] UID:41320 Activity:very high
1/10    dim-- 19 floor high rise building in the middle of the city,
        starting price: $1.5 mil. All sold out before they're even
        finished:    Here's a
        data point for you. All the 1 bdrm high-rise condos in this area
        start at $600K. Still think the city is full of poor people?
        \_ Or just go to Miami and drive up and down the coast.  All
           those condos.
        \_ Which city in "Still think the city is full of poor people?" are you
           talking about?
           \_ which city has a notable street called wilshire?
              \_ That's my point.  The "city" in the housing thread below
                 refers to SF.
                 refers to SF.  -- PP
                 \_ Someone who honestly does not know that there are more
                    rich people than poor in San Francisco is not worth having
                    a discussion with.
                    \_ Really?  Here's the household income breakdown
                       according to the 2000 Census:
                       $10K-            9.8%
                       $10K-$14.9K      5.0%
                       $15K-$24.9K      8.5%
                       $100K-$149.9K    13.2%
                       $150K-$199.9K    5.3%
                       $200K+           6.1%
                       What's your definition for rich and poor?  It's not
                       at all obvious to me there are more rich than poor
                       in San Francisco (I'm not sure $100K is really rich
                       here, but $25K is pretty damn poor).  You might also
                       \_ The median income for a household in the city
                          is $55,221, and the median income for a family
                          is $63,545 one of the highest in the United States
                          at 15th place overall and 3rd in a single large city.
                          74k in poverty:
                          By your own (outdated) numbers, 280k making
                          twice the national median, 100k making 3X.
                          By your own (outdated) numbers, 180k making
                          twice the national median, 82k making 3X.
                          \_ Sorry bub, but the median is a terrible measure
                             for the point you're trying to make (which, I
                             have to admit is pretty darned stupid).  Train
                             harder, grasshopper.
        \_ Yes, if the city is called thecalifornianonwilshire, then it has
           more rich people than poor.
        \_ Wilshire and a couple blocks east of Westwood Blvd is a prime
           location, not like the overpriced downtown lofts
           -long-time L.A. resident
           more rich people than poor.  If you are living in the County of
           Los Angeles, then ~35% of the households make less than $30K and
           ~18% make more than $100K.  Now, I'm guessing most of the $100K
           income types are not buying those $1.5M condos.  ~10% make $150K
           or more.  Maybe that's the target demographic.
        \_ Yes, the city is full of poor people. Then again, so is the
           country. If anything, this data point proves my point, which is
           that the quality of living in the city sucks unless you are a
           multi-millionaire. $600K for a one bedroom condo?! Do you want
           to lookup how much a house with a backyard, a FDR, and a family
           room costs in the same area? Which do more people desire based
           on that?
           \_ yes I looked up. All the single family homes in the area
              start at $1.25 mil. This is an area south of Belair, west
              of Beverely Hills, and east of Brentwood. By the way
              they're all old houses that were built in the 30s and 40s,
              and even the $1.25 mil homes look crappy.
           \_ There are some of us who don't want a huge house, and want the
              things you can only get by living in the city.  Why can't you
              just accept this?  I'm not the person attacking the 'burbs or
              the people that live in them, by the way.
              \_ Which is why this whole "debate" is retarded.  It seems to me
                 that part of the point of having money is doing whatever the
                 hell you want.  For some people that's 10 acres of giant
                 plastic gazebos, and for some people that's a penthouse
                 overlooking central park--but the implication that having
                 money somehow implies a specific lifestyle and that the
                 money somehow implies a specifici lifestyle and that the
                 only reason you'd do anything different is that you can't
                 afford it is just dumb.
              \_ I have no problem accepting that people have different
                 preferences. What I have a problem with is the idea that
                 'rich' people prefer the city and that 'suburban' people
                 are all putzes with no sense. However, whether you live
                 in the city or the suburbs, a single family residence is
                 more attractive to more people than a condo or apartment
                 is. Key here: more != all.
                 \_ Uh, you are twisting things 100% from the original
                    assestions that started the debate. Some suburbanite
                    claimed that no one preferred high density living
                    and that everyone wanted a large suburban home.
                    Remember this?
                    \_ Can you read? Most people prefer a SFR to
                       high-density housing, even in the cities. You can
                       confirm this by comparing relative prices.
          "It you stepped back from the class warfare language and pre-judgement
           of those with a life style you can't afford, you'd soon realise
           that "living" in a 650 square foot apartment isn't living.  You
           look at something you might never be able to afford and call it
           irrational.  People who have it can't imagine how you could stand
           to live in a rat hole apartment.  High density housing sucks to
           live in and going skiing a few times a year or having a nice park
           nearby doesn't make up for it."
2006/1/10 [Reference/RealEstate, Finance/Investment] UID:41316 Activity:nil
1/8     Dear mature home owners, maybe I'm young and stupid, but I want
        to know some of the justifications for your irrational needs.
        What exactly is the purpose of a formal dining room? My mom has
        \_ Some of us have a lot of cocktail & dinner parties.  -John
        a 4500 sq ft house and the formal dining room has been
        used twice in an entire decade. Secondly, what is the purpose of
        having a separate living room used for meeting guests and a
        family room? My mom's living room is rarely used and is there
        mostly for looks-- her guests usually go directly to the family
        room since it has a nice TV and is closer to the kitchen. Lastly,
        what exactly is the purpose of a large backyard with lots of
        grass when it is often used less than once a month?
        \_ I can tell you that my sister spent about $60,000 on her fancy
           front yard with gazeebo, statue, malibu lights, waterfountain,
           and other things. One time I went to her backyard and found
           moldy, deformed boxes which were once malibu light boxes
           where the workers left them a few months ago. I asked her about
           them and she said she hadn't noticed them. The only time
           she'd go to the backyard was when she had guests, so she
           could show off her fancy McBackyard. Oh and by the way
           she has a 4 bedroom McMansion and the only people living
           in it is... her. Suburbia is a total waste of land and
           resources, but as you already know, people are stupid.
        \_ Geez man, she lives in a 4500sq ft house.  Of course there's a
           lot of wasted space.  You could comfortably house 3 families in
           that much space.  As the above poster says, it's all just
           conspicuous consumption. -jrleek
        \_ A formal dining room is useful if you throw a lot of dinner parties
           or have old-fashioned sit down dinners as a family.  Otherwise it's
           just for show.
           \_ It's also good if you have big multiplayer board games.
              \_ Or have poker games with lots of people.
        \_ I always thought the formal dining is there so you can sell your
           house to people who want a formal dining room.  Me, I converted
           mine into an office, and it works great.  I'll deconvert back into
           a dining room when I sell.  The backyard is there for your kids.
           In fact, a friend is moving specifically for a larger backyard so
           his kids can have more play room.  The larger yard is also great
           for more buffer space between you and your neighbors.
        \_ These are artifacts of older housing concepts. Formal dining rooms
           just used to be the room you ate in, before the invention of the
           breakfast nook. Living rooms were styled after parlors and located
           in the front of the house to avoid tramping through a cluttered
           house, while family rooms were invented for the "back of the house".
           The more informal family and social life became and the less people
           entertained, the less need for these distictions. Large backyards
           were important because of a lack of green space (parks), to allow
           for entertaining, and to boost the ego. Land is still land.
        \_ It is simple: having nice things and lots of space gives people a
           warm n fuzzy feeling.  There is nothing irrational about it.  If
           you stepped back from the class warfare language and pre-judgement
           of those with a life style you can't afford, you'd soon realise
           that "living" in a 650 square foot apartment isn't living.  You
           look at something you might never be able to afford and call it
           irrational.  People who have it can't imagine how you could stand
           to live in a rat hole apartment.  High density housing sucks to
           live in and going skiing a few times a year or having a nice park
           nearby doesn't make up for it.
           \_ I could afford to live in a large house in the suburbs or a
              smaller condo in the city and I chose the city. I could even
              afford a larger place in San Francisco if I wanted it, but I
              don't. Not even's concept of self worth is tied up in their
              over consumption. I prefer high density housing and so do
              many people. Get off your high horse.
              \_ I think the person on the high horse is the OP. I like
                 having a FDR and a large back yard. I go out in the yard
                 every single day, because I like to garden. When I
                 entertain, I either entertain outside or in my FDR and
                 living room. The family room is upstairs and is sort of
                 a 'junk room' I don't invite guests to. In short, just
                 because a few people are putzes with more space than they
                 use doesn't mean everyone choosing a house over high-density
                 living is. I think 4500 square feet is excessive, but
                 then I couldn't afford that if I took out 3 mortgages.
              \_ I never said anything about self worth.  Don't project.  It
                 is entirely about personal space and comfort for those who
                 have.  I'm glad you have chosen to pay more to get less in
                 the city.  That is a wise investment.  Actually, most of the
                 people in high density housing are the poor.  I wouldn't
                 really call being poor a "choice" they made.
                 \_ Tell all the people living in South Beach, Telegraph
                    Hill, Nob Hill and Russian Hill that they are poor.
                    In most of the world the most desirable places to
                    live are in the city center, where density allows for
                    all the advantages of urban living. And is your
                    "that is a wise investment" line intended to be
                    sarcasm? It is hard to tell over ascii whether you
                    are being serious or not.
                    \_ Well, the pp said "most of the people in high density
                       housing are the poor".  IOW, we're counting heads here.
                       So, in SF, are there more people in expensive areas
                       like Nob Hill or in poor areas like the Tenderloin?
                       Are there more expensive neighborhoods or poor
                       neighboorhoods?  Are there more rich people or poor
                       people?  They can pack a lot of people
                       into projects, and it'll take a large area of luxe
                       apts and such to balance the head count. - !pp
                    \_ Rich people live in spacious penthouses in the
                       middle of the city, not shitty ratholes. Then they
                       fly out to the Hamptons or Aspen or whatever on
                       the weekends to unwind. While Manhattan is
                       expensive, the *average* apartment in Manhattan is
                       a dump - unless you are rich, of course.
           \_ I grew up in a big city where 95% of the people lived in
              apartments, so I am used to it   Living in a big house would
              be nice but living beyond my needs seems wasteful.  I finally
              bought a townhouse just so I can host my church fellowship
              gatherings at my place.  Other friends have bigger houses,
              but they are out of the way, whereas my place is centrally
              located so everyone can come without travelling too far.
                                           - yet another poster
              \_ You could afford more if you weren't tithing your 10%
                 \_ sure.  I had not been tithing a full pre-tax 10%
                    before last year.  Then I decided to start doing it
                    early last year after quite a bit of struggling, and
                    within 2 months, my stocks did so well that the
                    capital gains would be enough to cover 3 full years
                    of tithing.  Just goes to show how small we are and
                    how great God is.  We tithe because we should, not
                    because God would bless us because of it, but in
                    regard to tithing, Bible does says: "Test me in this,
                    and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of
                    heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will
                    not have room enough for it."  Malachi 3:8-12
                    Note that I am not saying that Christians have to
                    offer 10% pre-tax.  It's not a matter of following
                    a rule, or of judging people based on that.  It's
                    a matter of your heart and love of the Lord, and
                    love of your brothers and sisters and fellow men.
                    \_ I think you are a false Mormon.  Jesus quite clearly
                       teaches in the Bible that your faith in God has
                       nothing to do with your material wealth.  Unless
                       the book of Moroni has a few extra chapters not
                       being shared with the class.
                       \_ I am not a Mormon.
                    \_ So, you came into extra money and didn't tithe on that?
                       naughty boy.
                       \_ Like I said, it's not a matter of following
                          rules.  For capital gains, for me, since it's
                          for generating an income post-retirement,
                          I will just continue tithing that income
                          when I retire, and leave 10% of what I have
                          when I die.
                    \_ Why don't you tithe it to me next year, and cut out
                       the wasteful middlemen?
                       \_ You are funny, but I don't think you have
                          a need for it.
                          \_ Ever checked out the LDS Church balance sheets?
                             I can assure you I need it a lot more than it
                             does. I'd even share it with some other sodans.
                             \_ they make those public?
                                \_ I was glib... estimated assets are...
                                   large. ($tens of billions)
                             \_ if you want some, just join their church.
                             \_ My church is a small Lutheran church.
                    \_ You started tithing and your stocks went up.  Do you
                       actually think those are related?  Just think of how many
                       people God would be hurting if he made _your_ stocks go
                       up to reward you.
                       \_ Why would my stocks going up necessarily hurt
                          anyone.  The stock that went up most is doing
                          vaccine and antibodies production research for
                          diseases like flu, ebola, malaria, west nile,
                          rabies, etc.
        \_ I don't think that the presence of a dining room in most homes
           is that controversial. I, for one, strongly believe that meals
           should be normally consumed in the company of your relatives at
           a dining table and not in the living room or in the bedroom in
           front of TV. In many homes, the dining room is just an extension
           of either the kitchen or the living room which is fine. However,
           having separate family and living rooms seems to be less common
           (and less useful) indeed.
2006/1/6-9 [Reference/RealEstate, Finance/Investment] UID:41271 Activity:low
1/6     We survived the great bear market of 2000-2002.  Congratulations.
          \_ and by the skin of our teeth.  Bears are scary!
        \_ What do you mean by survived?  My previous company went under in
           \_ though you suffered, you are still here, healthy, and
              earning a decent income (I hope).
              \_ nope, took a pay cut to find a job in 2002.  Gonna change
                 jobs soon though.
        \_ Prepare for the great housing collapse of 2006-8.
           \_ I already have lawnchairs and a case of beer, if that's what
              you mean.  I intend to bask in shadenfreude.
              you mean.  I intend to bask in schadenfreude.
           \_ didn't they say they were going to stop increasing interest
              rates soon?
              \_ Greenspam has been making noise about 1 more increase and
                 then seeing what happens.  In other news, the housing bust
                 is here.  In the last quarter the rate of increase in the
                 price of housing crashed down to 6%.
                 \_ Greenspan retired.  And, uh, the rate of increase slowing
                    to 6% annually isn't exactly a bust.  -tom
                 \_ Uh, the rate of increase slowing to 6% annually isn't
                    exactly a bust.  -tom
                    \_ Sarcasm detectors... ACTIVATE!
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