Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

QOTD: The WSJ Unloads on “Fake President”

 

QOTD: The WSJ Unloads on “Fake President”

Courtesy of 

If President Trump announces that North Korea launched a missile that landed within 100 miles of Hawaii, would most Americans believe him? Would the rest of the world? We’re not sure, which speaks to the damage that Mr. Trump is doing to his Presidency with his seemingly endless stream of exaggerations, evidence-free accusations, implausible denials and other falsehoods.

A President’s Credibility (The Wall Street Journal)

Did Rupert Murdoch order the code red? This is tough stuff from the right-leaning editorial board of the Wall Street Journal. And it’s important that it be said by someone on the right, quite frankly. Nothing penetrates the mental force field between the two ends of the spectrum these days.

Bottom line: You can be the President of the United States or you can tweet bullshit from Fox & Friends or Alex Jones.

But you can’t do both.





OPEC Out Of Moves As Goldman Sachs Expects Another Oil Glut In 2018

 

OPEC Out Of Moves As Goldman Sachs Expects Another Oil Glut In 2018

By Nick Cunningham, OilPrice.com

Oil prices are heading down again on swelling U.S. crude oil inventories, with Brent dropping below $50 per barrel for the first time this year.

The OPEC deal that has taken more than 1 million barrels per day of oil off the market has not succeeded in reversing this bearish trend for inventories. And with the deal at its midway point, focus is shifting towards an extension of the cuts through the end of the year.

But OPEC’s usual strategy of jawboning the market back up ahead of these negotiations seems to be wearing thin amid record high crude oil inventories. "OPEC has used up most of its arsenal of verbal weapons to support the market. One hundred percent compliance by all is the only tool they have left and on that account they are struggling," said Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank.

"OPEC's market intervention has not yet resulted in significant visible inventory drawdowns, and the financial markets have lost patience," investment bank Jefferies said in a research note.

Although projections from Wall Street banks tend to vary quite a bit, there is a growing chorus warning about another slide in crude prices. At this point, the big variable is whether or not OPEC decides to extend the deal when it meets in May – an extension would likely stabilize prices and might even push them back up into the mid-$50s or higher. No extension and oil could fall much further into the $40s.Related: The Oil Market Is At A Major Turning Point

Looking out a bit further, things get much more complicated. Even if the supply/demand imbalance is taking a long time to correct itself, rising demand and tepid supply growth suggest that the glut will ease over time. At least that is the general consensus.

However, Goldman Sachs warns that another downturn could come over the next three years, sparked by a new wave of supply stemming from megaprojects planned years ago. These projects cost billions of dollars and take many years to bring online, and many of them were initiated back when oil prices…
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Why Big Insurance Adores the American Health Care Act

 

Why Big Insurance Adores the American Health Care Act

Courtesy of 

This post first appeared on BillMoyers.com.

There's been a lot of talk about just who was hurt and helped by Obamacare and who will profit or be imperiled by the next phase of health care legislation. Yet health insurance executives have been curiously silent about the House GOP plan to repeal and replace Obamacare. While the American Medical Association and the American Hospital Association, among many others, have come out against it, insurers have clearly made a strategic decision not to show their hand.

But know this: They love it. Their fingerprints are all over what the Republicans are calling the American Health Care Act. Arguably the only thing they don’t like about House Speaker Paul Ryan’s Ayn Randish creation is the way the plan would slash funding for the Medicaid program. That’s not because insurance executives are more compassionate for the poor than they’ve been in the past; it’s because a growing percentage of their profits now comes from Medicaid. In fact, more than half of the big insurers’ revenues is now coming from the government, not the private sector. And they’re fine with that.

Make no mistake, health insurance lobbyists also helped shape the Affordable Care Act. Most notably, they were able to get a provision stripped from the bill that would have created a government-run insurance plan (the “public option”) to compete with private insurers. But they didn’t get everything they wanted.

It gets rid of those pesky new rules on consumer protection

Over insurers’ objections, the ACA was enacted with important consumer protections. Thanks to the ACA, insurers can no longer charge older people more than three times as much as younger people for the same policy, and they can’t allocate more than 20 percent of what we pay in premiums to profits and administrative activities like sales and marketing. It’s also now illegal for insurers to deny people coverage because of a pre-existing condition. And policies sold now must cover several “essential benefits,” a provision that outlawed junk insurance.

Now that the insurance executives have…
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News You Can Use From Phil’s Stock World

 

Financial Markets and Economy

U.K. Retail Sales Rebound in February Amid Gloomy Quarter (Bloomberg)

U.K. retail sales rose more strongly than expected in February but the outlook for the British consumer remains weak.

European Stocks Hold Steady as Gain by Miners Offsets Food, Tech (Bloomberg)

European stocks were little changed, with advances in mining companies countering declines in food and beverage producers.

Next Shares Rise as Retailer Holds Forecasts Amid Tough Market (Bloomberg)

Next Plc held its profit forecast and said it can mitigate a tough U.K. clothing market by improving ranges and switching suppliers, reassuring investors worried about the retailer’s price pressures and product challenges.

10 things you need to know before the opening bell (Business Insider)

Here is what you need to know.

The House is set to vote on Trumpcare. President Donald Trump and House Republican leaders are making a last-minute push to secure the votes needed to move the GOP's bid to overhaul the US healthcare system onto the Senate; 218 votes will be needed for the bill pass.

Pound Climbs to One-Month High as U.K. Retail Sales Rebound (Bloomberg)

Sterling gained versus all of its 16 major peers, while government bonds fell as sales rose 1.4 percent after sliding a revised 0.5 percent in January, the Office for National Statistics said Thursday. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey of economists was for an increase of 0.4 percent.

Bonds in India Rally Third Day as Foreign Banks Boost Purchases (Bloomberg)

Indian sovereign bonds climbed for a third day as foreign funds boosted holdings amid expectations of more economic reforms after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s party won elections in a key state.

UK retail sales shook off Brexit fears to have a great month in February — but there are worrying signs for the future (Business Insider UK)

UK retail sales had a huge month in February, confounding the forecasts of economists who had predicted stuttering growth in the month, according to the latest data from the Office for National Statistics.

The pound took off
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Thoughtless Thursday – TrumpDon’tCare Health Plan Gets a Vote

Image result for trump health careBig vote tonight.

If the TrumpDon'tCare Plan is approved (the CBO says it can no longer be called a health plan since the overall goal is to kill as many people as possible), then Trump's agenda is winning and the markets could leg higher.  If, on the other hand, the GOP revolts against The Donald, all Hell could break loose so ignore the politics if you want to but we're paying very close attention! 

Interestingly, the main GOP objection to TrumpDon'tCare is that it still cared about forcing Health Insurance Companies to provide minimum benefits to their customers.  That has now been removed by the White House and now the Insurance Companies don't have to do anything for anyone at any time – isn't that great?  As noted by Politico, however:

While altering the coverage requirements could help win over the Freedom Caucus members, it could drive away moderates — another coalition that House leaders need to build upon in the final 24 hours before the planned vote on Thursday. House leaders are still short of the 215 votes they need.

Image result for trump health care cartoonIt's going to be hard to bridge the gap because the bill still is not Draconian enough for the "Freedom Caucus":

Freedom Caucus members, led by Meadows, want at least some parts of Title One of the bill removed. Included in Title One are many of the Affordable Care Act's benefits, like a prohibition on insurers denying coverage over pre-existing conditions and a prohibition on lifetime and annual limits.

That's right, your pre-existing conditions can now stop you from getting coverage and, even if you are covered, there can be a cap – so don't get too sick or you'll be on your own!  Aside from leading to a great unwinding in the Health Care, Pharma and Biotech sectors, TrumpDon'tCare will put a huge burden on the bottom 99% and eat into their disposable income
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Comment by pstas

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  1. pstas

    Actually, you take a simple issue about short housing supply and turn it in to a senseless rant about Mexicans rapists? Geez, where to you get this crap?

    The reality is there are many market related factors affecting housing in CA but the State does mostly nothing to mitigate the issue. Just the facts will do to tell a story. Agree or disagree but keep it civil, please. 







Why Facts Don’t Change Our Minds

 

Why Facts Don’t Change Our Minds

Courtesy of John Mauldin, Outside the Box

You and I are both rational beings who let facts drive our thinking, but it seems our fellow humans are not so thoughtful. Or at least that’s what the research says. It turns out that behavioral psychologists have been undermining the bastions of human reasonability for decades, starting with some nefarious characters in the Stanford University psych department back in the ’70s, whose devilishly clever experiments were then taken a frightening step further at that equally suspect institution over on the other coast: Harvard. Don’t these mental types have anything better to do than conclusively prove that nobody (but you and I) can think straight?

Apparently not. And then the Harvard guys had the temerity to suggest that the human race’s muddleheadedness goes allllllll the way back to the time we spent trotting around on the African savannah. Remember that? Lotsa fun – if you didn’t get chewed up by a pack of hyenas or run down by a herd of water buffalos. You see, we weren’t just sitting out there on the plain playing checkers or debating the finer points of Cartesian philosophy. No, we were hanging on by the skin of our teeth – even as our teeth got smaller so our brains could get bigger. But it turns out that the most significant way our brains got bigger – and the main reason we survived and evolved into the total media animals we are today – was that we figured out how to cooperate.

Or at least that’s what the Harvard guys say. Their argument runs more or less like this:

It’s quite frustrating … when you think about it. But I guess it’s better to face the truth about ourselves than to go along blindly, always wondering over the irrational hijinks our fellow two-leggeds are forever getting up to.

The whole sordid – but not entirely unhopeful – story is laid out by Elizabeth Kolbert in a piece titled “Why Facts Don’t Change Our Minds,” in – you guessed it – The New Yorker … yes, the only rag in the greater English-speaking world that insists


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Russia, an alleged coup and Montenegro’s bid for NATO membership

 

Russia, an alleged coup and Montenegro's bid for NATO membership

Courtesy of Vesko Garcevic, Boston University

Testifying before a congressional committee, FBI Director James Comey has confirmed that his agency is investigating links between the Donald Trump campaign and Russia. The Conversation

While this investigation continues, Americans should be reminded of the signs of Russian interference in democratic processes outside the U.S. – specifically, in the Balkans.

Small but strategic

Recently, British Prime Minister Theresa May expressed concern over Moscow’s apparent involvement in an attempted coup in my home country.

From 2010 to 2015, I was the ambassador to NATO from Montenegro, a young democracy in southeast Europe that is part of the former Yugoslavia. Montenegro was targeted by an apparent coup attempt during its last parliamentary election on Oct. 16, 2016. While Russia has denied involvement, details of the plot shared by a Serbian man arrested at the scene point to what The New York Times called “Russian efforts to sow mayhem.”

Montenegro’s chief special prosecutor has alleged the involvement of two Russian Military Intelligence Service (GRU) agents, Vladimir Popov and Eduard Shirokov. The GRU is the same organization sanctioned by the Obama administration for hacking the Democratic National Committee offices. Shirolov, who has also gone by the name Shishmakov, was posted as the assistant military attache at the Russian Embassy in Poland until 2014 – when Poland threw him out of the country for spying.

As some of the plotters later confessed, their goal was to overthrow Montenegro’s government, kill then-Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic and put into power political groups that oppose Montenegro’s NATO membership. Russia is on the record as opposing that membership bid and promised “retaliatory actions.”

Despite Russian opposition, joining NATO is one of Montenegro’s major foreign policy goals. The overwhelming majority of NATO members, 26 states, have already ratified the country’s membership and the process seemed on track for completion at the next NATO summit in May of 2017.

However, the addition of new members to the alliance requires unanimous support, and Spain and the U.S. still haven’t passed ratification.


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3-D printing turns nanomachines into life-size workers

 

3-D printing turns nanomachines into life-size workers

Image 20170322 12437 jb8bq0

Molecular machines are ready to join forces and take on real-world work. Chenfeng Ke, CC BY-ND

Courtesy of Chenfeng Ke, Dartmouth College

Nanomachines are tiny molecules – more than 10,000 lined up side by side would be narrower than the diameter of a human hair – that can move when they receive an external stimulus. They can already deliver medication within a body and serve as computer memories at the microscopic level. But as machines go, they haven’t been able to do much physical work – until now. The Conversation

My lab has used nano-sized building blocks to design a smart material that can perform work at a macroscopic scale, visible to the eye. A 3-D-printed lattice cube made out of polymer can lift 15 times its own weight – the equivalent of a human being lifting a car.

Our polymer is able to lift an aluminum plate when chemical energy is added in the form of a solvent.

 

Nobel-winning roots are rotaxanes

The design of our new material is based on Nobel Prize-winning research that turned mechanically interlocked molecules into work-performing machines at nanoscale – things like molecular elevators and nanocars.

Rotaxanes are one of the most widely investigated of these molecules. These dumbbell-shaped molecules are capable of converting input energy – in the forms of light, heat or altered pH – into molecular movements. That’s how these kinds of molecular structures got the nickname “nanomachines.”

For example, in a molecule called [2]rotaxane, composed of one ring on an axle, the ring can move along the axle to perform shuttling motions.

Left, a [2]rotaxane. The ring can shuttle along the axle. Right, representation of billions of [2]rotaxanes in solution. The motions of nano-rings counteract macroscopically. Chenfeng Ke, CC BY-ND

So far, harnessing the mechanical work of rotaxanes has been very challenging. When billions of these tiny machines are randomly oriented, the ring motions will cancel each…
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News You Can Use From Phil’s Stock World

 

Financial Markets and Economy

Record Number of Fund Managers Say U.S. Equities Are Overvalued (Bloomberg)

Fund managers now say stocks are the most overvalued they have been in nearly 20 years, according to a survey done last week by Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

For China’s Central Bank, an Increasingly Difficult Balancing Act (The Wall Street Journal)

China’s central bank faces an increasingly tough balancing act, trying to contain asset bubbles and steady the yuan without triggering a cash crunch and stifling economic growth.

Sales of Previously Owned U.S. Homes Fell 3.7% in February (Bloomberg)

Housing demand is being restrained by a limited inventory of homes for sale that’s pushed property values higher. The jump in home prices from a year earlier far exceeded the gain in wage growth during the month.

A Brazilian meat scandal damages the country’s two global producers (The Economist)

Even amid Brazil’s pungent stew of recent big corporate scandals, the latest is particularly stomach-turning. On Friday March 17th, in time for a traditional weekend churrasco, or barbecue, the federal police accused some of the country’s biggest meat producers of bribing health inspectors to turn a blind eye to grubby practices.

Stocks Steady After Selloff as Tech Shares Rally (The Wall Street Journal)

Gains in technology shares buoyed the S&P 500 Wednesday as U.S. stocks stabilized following their worst day of the year.

Investors sent the S&P 500’s technology sector to its biggest daily climb in three weeks, while tech companies accounted for the top four gainers in the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

Choppy day on Wall Street; all eyes on Trump and healthcare (Reuters)

Wall Street ended mixed after a choppy session on Wednesday as investors focused on President Donald Trump's struggle to push through a healthcare bill and snapped up stocks after a steep drop the day before.

London's Black Cabs Go Green as Geely Opens Coventry Factory (Bloomberg)

An all-electric version of London’s iconic black cab is set to go on sale at the end of this year after its Chinese manufacturer opened a solar-powered factory near Coventry, England.


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ValueWalk

Why Things Aren't What They Used To Be In Emerging Markets

By Franklin Templeton Investments. Originally published at ValueWalk.

The prospect of stabilizing commodity prices and improving corporate earnings has helped rebuild investor interest in emerging markets over the past year. But returning investors may find the constituents of today’s emerging markets are very different from those of the past. I’ve invited my colleague Carlos Hardenberg to share some of his experiences of how emerging markets are not just emerging but evolving, too.

Carlos Hardenberg

Senior Vice President and Managing Director

Templeton Emerging Markets Group

When we look at the emerging-market companies in which we invest today, they are worlds away from the companies we were analysing a decade or two ago.

The landscape of emerging-market corporations in ...



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Zero Hedge

Trump Issues An Ultimatum To House Republicans: Vote On Friday Or Obamacare Stays

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Following a day of narrative twists and turns ahead of what was supposed to be a Thursday night vote to repeal Obamacare, a vote which was pulled in the last moment when over 30 conservative and moderate House republicans threatened to vote against the Ryan/Trump plan, Trump has had enough with the Freedom Caucus dissenters and has issued an informal ultimatum: vote to repeal Obamacare on Friday or Obamacare stays.

Trump is demanding a vote Friday in the House on the Republican plan to repeal and replace Obamacare, White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said ...



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Phil's Favorites

QOTD: The WSJ Unloads on "Fake President"

 

QOTD: The WSJ Unloads on “Fake President”

Courtesy of 

If President Trump announces that North Korea launched a missile that landed within 100 miles of Hawaii, would most Americans believe him? Would the rest of the world? We’re not sure, which speaks to the damage that Mr. Trump is doing to his Presidency with his seemingly endless stream of exaggerations, evidence-free accusations, implausible denials and other falsehoods.

A President’s Credibility (The Wall Street Journal)

...

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Kimble Charting Solutions

Gold Bugs; Stellar performance stage set again

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

From 2001 to 2011, would you have rather owned the S&P 500 or Gold Miners (Gold Bugs Index/HUI)? If you answered the Gold Bugs index, you would be correct. The left chart below compares the performance of the Gold Bugs Index and the S&P 500. From 2001 to 2011, the Gold Bugs index out performed the S&P 500 by 1,400% (left chart below).

Since 2011, miners have been weaker than the S&P 500 by a large percent. Could the stage be for another period where the mining stocks are going to be stronger than the broad markets again?

...

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Market News

News You Can Use From Phil's Stock World

 

Financial Markets and Economy

U.K. Retail Sales Rebound in February Amid Gloomy Quarter (Bloomberg)

U.K. retail sales rose more strongly than expected in February but the outlook for the British consumer remains weak.

European Stocks Hold Steady as Gain by Miners Offsets Food, Tech (Bloomberg)

European stocks were little changed, with advances in mining companies countering declines in food and beverage producers.

...



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Chart School

Semiconductors Recover at 20-day MA

Courtesy of Declan.

Yesterday's selling didn't follow through with additional losses, instead, indices dug in at lows and managed to recover some of yesterday's selloff.  The best recovery came from the Semiconductor Index. It gained over 1% as it bounced off its 20-day MA. However, it wasn't enough to stop a 'sell' trigger in the MACD and CCI.


Next is the Nasdaq 100. It staged a recovery, but not from a typical support level. Unfortunately, it has a MACD trigger 'sell' from early March and a new 'sell' trigger between the -DI an...

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Members' Corner

Natterings

Check out some new posts from our friend The Nattering Naybob. 

The Big Lebowski Sequel?

Taking a "resp-shit" or "potty break" from "in the Toilet Thursday" or "Thursday's in the Loo"... One of our favorite scenes from the 1998 cult classic The Big Lebowski, the ash can scene where Walter Subchak (John Goodman) eulogizes the departed Donnie (Steve Buscemi) with Jeffrey Lebowski (Jeff Bridges) looking on.

Keep reading: ...



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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of March 20th, 2017

Reminder: OpTrader is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

This post is for all our live virtual trade ideas and daily comments. Please click on "comments" below to follow our live discussion. All of our current  trades are listed in the spreadsheet below, with entry price (1/2 in and All in), and exit prices (1/3 out, 2/3 out, and All out).

We also indicate our stop, which is most of the time the "5 day moving average". All trades, unless indicated, are front-month ATM options. 

Please feel free to participate in the discussion and ask any questions you might have about this virtual portfolio, by clicking on the "comments" link right below.

To learn more about the swing trading virtual portfolio (strategy, performance, FAQ, etc.), please click here ...



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Digital Currencies

Bitcoin Tumbles Below Gold As China Tightens Regulations

Courtesy of Zero Hedge

Having rebounded rapidly from the ETF-decision disappointment, Bitcoin suffered another major setback overnight as Chinese regulators are circulating new guidelines that, if enacted, would require exchanges to verify the identity of clients and adhere to banking regulations.

A New York startup called Chainalysis estimated that roughly $2 billion of bitcoin moved out of China in 2016.

As The Wall Street Journal reports, the move to regulate bitcoin exchanges brings assurance that Chinese authorities will tolerate some level of trading, after months of uncertainty. A draft of the guidelines also indicates th...



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Mapping The Market

Congress begins rolling back Obama's broadband privacy rules

Courtesy of Jean Luc

I am trying to remember who on this board said that people wanted to Trump because they want their freedom back. Well….

Congress begins rolling back Obama's broadband privacy rules

By Daniel Cooper, Endgadget

ISPs will soon be able to sell your most private data without your consent.

As expected, Republicans in Congress have begun the process of rolling back the FCC's broadband privacy rules which prevent excessive surveillance. Arizona Republican Jeff Flake introduced a resolution to scrub the rules, using Congress' powers to invalidate recently-approved federal regulations. Reuters reports that the move has broad support, with 34 other names throwing their weight behind the res...



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Promotions

Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"

 

 

Here's a free ebook for you to check out! 

Phil has a chapter in a newly-released eBook that we think you’ll enjoy.

In My Top Strategies for 2017, Phil's chapter is Secret Santa’s Inflation Hedges for 2017.

This chapter isn’t about risk or leverage. Phil present a few smart, practical ideas you can use as a hedge against inflation as well as hedging strategies designed to assist you in staying ahead of the markets.

Some other great content in this free eBook includes:

 

·       How 2017 Will Affect Oil, the US Dollar and the European Union

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Biotech

The Medicines Company: Insider Buying

Reminder: Pharmboy and Ilene are available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

I'm seeing huge insider buying in the biotech company The Medicines Company (MDCO). The price has already moved up around 7%, but these buys are significant, in the millions of dollars range. ~ Ilene

 

 

 

Insider transaction table and buying vs. selling graphic above from insidercow.com.

Chart below from Yahoo.com

...

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All About Trends

Mid-Day Update

Reminder: Harlan is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

Click here for the full report.




To learn more, sign up for David's free newsletter and receive the free report from All About Trends - "How To Outperform 90% Of Wall Street With Just $500 A Week." Tell David PSW sent you. - Ilene...

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FeedTheBull - Top Stock market and Finance Sites



About Phil:

Philip R. Davis is a founder Phil's Stock World, a stock and options trading site that teaches the art of options trading to newcomers and devises advanced strategies for expert traders...

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About Ilene:

Ilene is editor and affiliate program coordinator for PSW. She manages the site market shadows, archives, more. Contact Ilene to learn about our affiliate and content sharing programs.

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