Archive for 2011

What DSK’s Escape From Harlem NYPD Will Look (And Sound) Like

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

We decided to round off this weekend’s barrage of surrealist news with some comedy. This is what some expect the imminent escape from Harlem NYPD by the IMF head will look and sound like (and there were those who said Raj Raj is a flight risk).





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Strauss-Kahn Court Appearance Delayed Until Monday; DSK “Tired But Fine”

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

Minutes ago the IMF announced that it has postponed its informal crisis meeting which was supposed to take place this evening, following the rapidly changing situation in New York, where it was just announced that DSK’s court arraignment would be delayed until tomorrow, in order for him to undergo a physical examination checking for scratches and other DNA evidence from the accuser.

From the AP:

An arraignment expected Sunday night was postponed until Monday. Strauss-Kahn’s lawyer William Taylor said testing for evidence delayed the arraignment.

“Our client willingly consented to a scientific and forensic examination,” Taylor said. Strauss-Kahn is “tired, but he’s fine.”

The IMF, which plays a key role in efforts to control the European debt crisis, named an acting leader and said it remains “fully functioning and operational” despite Saturday’s arrest of its managing director.

A second lawyer for Strauss-Kahn, Benjamin Brafman, told The Associated Press that his client will plead not guilty. He and another lawyer went in and out of the Harlem police precinct where Strauss-Kahn was being held early Sunday afternoon, and declined to answer reporters’ questions until the arraignment.

“He intends to vigorously defend these charges and he denies any wrongdoing,” Brafman said Sunday night.

And some more from AP:

Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s reputation with women earned him the nickname “the great seducer,” and not even an affair with a subordinate could knock the International Monetary Fund leader off a political path pointed in the direction of the French presidency. All that changed with charges that he sexually assaulted a maid in his hotel room, a case that generated shock and revulsion, especially in his home country.

Police said the maid picked Strauss-Kahn out of a lineup. Unless the charges are quickly dropped, they could destroy his chances in a presidential race that is just starting to heat up.

A member of France’s Socialist party, Strauss-Kahn was widely considered the strongest potential challenger next year to President Nicolas Sarkozy, whose political fortunes have been flagging.

“At the top of the polls,” Strauss-Kahn tweeted proudly in French last December, linking an article that showed him ahead in opinion polls when French voters were asked whom they would choose in a primary. At a soccer game in a Washington suburb last September, he, his


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COLLEGE CONSPIRACY – CALIFORNIA PRISON ACADEMY IS BETTER THAN A HARVARD DEGREE

Courtesy of The Daily Bail

Thank the student loan industry for out-of-control costs at U.S. universities.  As a point of reference, I started my first year at the University of Virginia in September 1984.  Tuition was $7,000 per year for out of state students and $7800 4 years later when I graduated.  I was also accepted at Stanford in 1984 where tuition was $15,000.  In 2011, UVa tuition for out of state students will be approximately $33,000 per year and Stanford $50,000.

What used to cost a nice car now costs a home.  When any smart 18 year-old with a pulse can get $200k in student loans in exchange for her signature, is it any surprise that college tuition rates have skyrocketed.

Meanwhile…

Prison guards can retire at the age of 55 and earn 85% of their final year’s salary for the rest of their lives.  They also continue to receive medical benefits (WSJ).

Roughly 2,000 students have to decide by Sunday whether to accept a spot at Harvard. Here’s some advice: Forget Harvard. If you want to earn big bucks and retire young, you’re better off becoming a California prison guard.

The job might not sound glamorous, but a brochure from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitations boasts that it "has been called ‘the greatest entry-level job in California’—and for good reason. Our officers earn a great salary, and a retirement package you just can’t find in private industry. We even pay you to attend our academy." That’s right—instead of paying more than $200,000 to attend Harvard, you could earn $3,050 a month at cadet academy.

It gets better.

Training only takes four months, and upon graduating you can look forward to a job with great health, dental and vision benefits and a starting base salary between $45,288 and $65,364. By comparison, Harvard grads can expect to earn $49,897 fresh out of college and $124,759 after 20 years.

As a California prison guard, you can make six figures in overtime and bonuses alone. While Harvard-educated lawyers and consultants often have to work long hours with little recompense besides Chinese take-out, prison guards receive time-and-a-half whenever they work more than 40 hours a week. One sergeant with a base salary of $81,683 collected $114,334 in overtime and $8,648 in bonuses…
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Third worker dies at Japan’s troubled nuclear plant

TOKYO (Reuters) – A worker at Japan’s tsunami-crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant died on Saturday, plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co said, bringing the death toll at the complex to three since a massive earthquake and tsunami in March.

Despite the prolonged nuclear crisis, Prime Minister Naoto Kan is set to announce at a G8 summit in France that Japan will keep using nuclear power, the Yomiuri newspaper said.

The cause of the worker’s death was unknown. The man, in his 60s, was employed by one of Tokyo Electric’s contractors and started working at the plant on Friday. He was exposed to 0.17 millisieverts of radiation on Saturday, Tokyo Electric said.

The Japanese government’s maximum level of exposure for male workers at the plant is 250 millisieverts for the duration of the effort to bring it under control.

The worker fell ill 50 minutes after starting work at 6:00 a.m. on Saturday (5 p.m. EDT on Friday) and brought to the plant’s medical room unconscious. He was later moved to a nearby hospital and confirmed dead, a Tokyo Electric spokesman said.

More here: Third worker dies at Japan’s troubled nuclear plant – chicagotribune.com.





Keep On Dancing Till The World Ends?

Courtesy of Leo Kolivakis

Via Pension Pulse.

It was a rainy and cold weekend in Montreal so I spent most of it doing the one thing I hate the most, shopping. I bought a new mattress, a new television, some clothes and re-tailored my suits, jackets and pants because the first tailor did a terrible job (losing weight is healthy but expensive).

Tonight, I had dinner at my brother’s house, saw my nephews and sister-in-law and enjoyed some BBQ burgers and hotdogs (once in a while, it’s good to indulge!). My brother’s neighbor was over with his two young girls and we talked shop a little. Montreal’s investment community is small. Turns out he works at Stanton Asset Management, which is the portfolio advisor to O’Leary Funds, private clients and institutional clients.

According to their website, the investment team at Stanton is responsible for over $1 billion of assets under management, invested in Canadian and global markets, including investment grade bonds, high yield bonds, convertible bonds and equities. I know Connor O’Brien, Stanton’s Chief Investment Officer, as he used to run a small fund of funds focusing on delivering high risk-adjusted returns.

My brother’s neighbor told me the O’Leary Funds have performed extremely well with low beta, helping assets grow. It also helps to have Kevin O’Leary, who everyone knows as Canada’s unrepentant dragon, to market the funds. I told him I’d be more than happy to plug Stanton on my blog and have other ideas that I’d like to discuss with Connor and Kevin O’Leary.

Speaking of marketing, before I get to my latest comment, I want to clarify something. Pension Pulse is a blog I created to share my perspective on markets and pensions. I don’t care if you agree or disagree with my views, but take the time to read them carefully. I do not have a monopoly on wisdom but I try to offer a fresh perspective that most analysts do not bring.

I am not a permabull or a permabear. In fact, I was extremely bearish back in 2006 and it ended up costing me my job (they claimed I was too negative). It’s all in the past for me but I recently started asking for donations on my blog and would appreciate your financial support, especially from the large institutions that read me on a daily basis. But there…
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Is A Deluge Of Latent Rape Accusations Against Strauss-Kahn Imminent?

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

A French reader of Zero Hedge steps up and makes the following bold prediction: a “Tiger Woods effect” is now imminent, as many other rape accusations against Dominique  (or will that soon be Demonique?) Strauss-Kahn emerge, since yesterday’s rape episode is most certainly not the first time this has occurred (granted, DSK is innocent until proven guilty). “Until now, hes has been bale to fight back allegations by “fixing” the situation through influence and keeping the French press shut up, or by pressuring the women into not getting into a public battle with him.” Now this status quo is over, and it is very likely that very soon many more will step up from under the cloak of anonymity and tell their story.

Full prediction:

This is not the first time this has happened. But until now, hes has been bale to fight back allegations by “fixing” the situation through influence and keeping the French press shut up, or by pressuring the women into not getting into a public battle with him.

I wanted to point you to this video:

Short summary:

This young journalist was attacked when she interviewed DSK who made her come to a remote apartment with nothing but a TV, VCR, and bed in it.

He then attacked her and she fought back. He tore off her bra and jeans. She used the words “rape” during the fight to scare him away, but he showed no reaction. She was eventually able to flee, but did not bring charges on the advice of an attorney who showed her a pile of similar cases against DSK but that the other women had decided not to go forward. The lawyer advised her that, if she went forward, she would forever be known as the woman who brought down DSK, not as a journalist.

After the incident and after she had been able to flee, DSK sent her a phone text message, saying’ “You fear me, don’t you?”

The TV show was a show where well-known people talk about their most difficult professional moments.

When the TV show initially ran, the moments where Banon mentions Strauss-Kahn’s name were BLEEPED out. The bleeps have now been removed.

If you dig deeper, you will find much, much more, at every step of his career.
You


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Complacency That Makes You Go Hmmm

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

Time for another dose of original observations and compiled content from the pen of Grant Williams and his latest “Things that make you go hmmmm” which this time focuses, appropriately, on the topic of complacency: “It seems to me that if there were a futures contract in complacency, it would certainly not be in need of a CME margin hike due to a completely lopsided supply/demand picture. Yes I’m sure there would be all kinds of whack-jobs talking about a conspiracy to sell complacency short and thus flood the world with unbacked self-satisfaction and unawareness, but the simple truth is, complacency occurs naturally for the most part and is in abundance roughly 95% of the time. Lately, however, a curious phenomenon has taken place. Back in the dying days of the 20th century, Doctor Alan Greenspan discovered a way to manufacture a super-strain of artificial complacency by adding confidence and using the power of words and the setting of interest rates.  Greenspan soldiered on and, when Long Term Capital Management hit the skids in 1998, he set about his grand experiment – introducing manufactured complacency into the financial marketplace. Prior to 1998, the business world had largely existed on a traditional cycle of boom and bust as contraction followed expansion and failing businesses were allowed to meet their inevitable demise. They were heady days indeed. People were wary of the potential pitfalls of bad decision-making and, while complacency was most certainly evident, its supply/demand situation spent many long periods in perfect equilibrium. After Dr. Greenspan’s introduction of artificial complacency, however, things began to change…”

Full report (pdf)

Hmmm May 15 2011

Attachment Size
Hmmm May 15 2011.pdf 1.65 MB




“Act As If” – Greece vs America Edition

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

The most memorable scene from the movie Boiler Room is when the character of Ben Afleck tells the room full of wannabe brokers to “Act As If” (and in the tangent regarding male genitalia, the head of the IMF would have been wise to take the advice instead of opening his fly and disproving it). Who would have thought that a few short years later, it would be none other than insolvent countries taking this advice: specifically, America acting as if it wasn’t insolvent, and Greece acting as if it was beyond saving. The irony, as William Buckler observes in his latest edition of the Privateer, is that while US debt continues to trade (if no longer be accepted) as the “Rock of Gibraltar” and Greek paper is trading with a certainty of bankruptcy, it is Greece that has taken proactive steps in taxing and spending policy, while the US has merely retrenched its profligate ways, and while much political theater takes place, nothing ever really changes. For some of the more perverse consequences of this bizarro world inversion, read below.

“Let’s Pretend” Has Run Amok, from Bill Buckler

In Greece, which has been subject to the not so tender ministrations of the US debt ratings agencies and the global “risk” markets for the past eighteen months, government two-year rates soared above 25 percent this week. The rate for two-year US Treasury paper is hovering just above the 0.50 percent level. Plug these two numbers into the “algorithms” by which computers control  most financial trading these days and the result is obvious. The Greek government will be seen as a financial pariah and treated accordingly. The US government will be seen as the fiscal Rock of Gibraltar. But even the US would pale in comparison to Japan, where two-year rates on government debt are below 0.20 percent.

In terms of funded debt, Japan has by far the biggest government debt to GDP ratio in the world. Greece is ahead of the US in that respect, but not by much. On the “markets”, Greek rates indicate a HUGE perceived risk in holding their paper. US and Japanese rates indicate no risk whatsoever.

Of the three nations in question here, only one has made any discernible change in their taxing and spending policies over recent years. That nation


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Zero Hedge

Enemy Of The People?

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Via The Zman blog,

There has never been a time when normal people did not know the media was biased and biased in a predictable direction. For every non-liberal in the media, there were at least ten liberals. The ratio was probably higher, but then, as now, some lefties liked to pretend they were independents or some third option.

The media used to invest a lot of time denying they had a bias and an agenda, but the only people who believed them were on the Left, which had the odd effect of confirming they had a bias and an agenda.

...



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Phil's Favorites

A 2019 Earnings Recession?

 

A 2019 Earnings Recession?

Courtesy of 

Shout to Leigh!

On the new Talk Your Book – Josh Brown is joined by Leigh Drogen of Estimize, one of the leading providers of crowdsourced financial and economic data to talk about the trend in corporate profits that could potentially lead to an earnings recession later this year.

What is the thing that Leigh is seeing in the data that Wall Street isn’t yet picking up on? What segment of the stock market is most at risk? Why is the crowd smarter than the narrow consensus of Wall Street analysts?

Check out Estimize ...



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ValueWalk

D.E. Shaw Investment Calls For Leadership Change At EQT

By ActivistInsight. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Elliott Management has offered to acquire QEP Resources for approximately $2.1 billion, contending the oil and gas explorer’s turnaround efforts have done little to lift the company’s share price. The company responded and said that a thorough review of the proposition is imperative in order to properly act in the best interests of shareholders, “taking into account the company’s other alternatives and current market conditions.” The news came only a month after Travelport Worldwide agreed to sell itself to Siris Capital Group and Elliott’s private equity arm Evergreen Coast Capital for $4.4 billion in cash and two months after Athenahealth was bought by Veritas and Evergreen for $5.7 bi...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Gold & Silver Testing Important Breakout Levels!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

Gold and Silver from a long-term perspective have created a series of lower highs over the past 8-years. Will 2019 bring a change to this trend? A big test is in play!

Gold since the lows in 2016 has created a series of higher lows, while Silver may have created a double bottom.

Gold & Silver are currently facing break attempts a (1) and (2). These falling resistance lines have disappointed metals bulls for the past few years.

The direction of Gold and Silver weeks and months from now should be highly influenced by what each does as they are attempting to break above important resistance levels.

To become a member of Kimbl...



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Insider Scoop

UBS Says Disney's Streaming Ambition Gives It A 'New Hope'

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related DIS Despite Some Risks, Analysts Still Expecting Double Digit Growth From Communications Services In Q4 ...

http://www.insidercow.com/ more from Insider

Digital Currencies

Russia Prepares To Buy Up To $10 Billion In Bitcoin To Evade US Sanctions

Courtesy of Zero Hedge

While the market has been increasingly focused on the rising headwinds in the global economy in general, and China's economic slowdown in particular, while the media is obsessing over daily revelations that Trump may or may not have colluded with Russia to get elected, a far more critical, if underreported, shift has been taking place over the past year.

As we reported in June, whether due to concerns over draconian western sanctions and asset confiscations following the poisoning of former Russian military officer Sergei Skripal, or simply because it wanted to diversify away from the dollar, Russia liquidated virtually all of its Treasury holdings in the late spri...



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Chart School

Weekly Market Recap Jan 13, 2019

Courtesy of Blain.

In last week’s recap we asked:  “Has the Fed solved all the market’s problems in 1 speech?”

Thus far the market says yes!  As Guns n Roses preached – all we need is a little “patience”.  Four up days followed by a nominal down day Friday had the market following it’s normal pattern the past nearly 30 years – jumping whenever the Federal Reserve hints (or essentially says outright) it is here for the markets.   And in case you missed it the prior Friday, Chairman Powell came back out Thursday to reiterate the news – so…so… so… patient!

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell reinforced that message Thursday during a discussion at the Economic Club of Washington where he said that the central bank will be “fle...



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Members' Corner

Why Trump Can't Learn

 

Bill Eddy (lawyer, therapist, author) predicted Trump's failure based on his personality, which was evident years ago. This article, written in 2017, references a prescient article Bill wrote before Trump became president, in July, 2016, 5 Reasons Trump Can’t Learn. ~ Ilene 

Why Trump Can’t Learn

Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore (...



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Biotech

Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

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

 

Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

Bacteriophage viruses infecting bacterial cells , Bacterial viruses. from www.shutterstock.com

Courtesy of John Bergeron, McGill University

Today, the scientific community is aghast at the prospect of gene editing to create “designer” humans. Gene editing may be of greater consequence than climate change, or even the consequences of unleashing the energy of the atom.

...

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Mapping The Market

Trump: "I Won't Be Here" When It Blows Up

By Jean-Luc

Maybe we should simply try him for treason right now:

Trump on Coming Debt Crisis: ‘I Won’t Be Here’ When It Blows Up

The president thinks the balancing of the nation’s books is going to, ultimately, be a future president’s problem.

By Asawin Suebsaeng and Lachlan Markay, Daily Beast

The friction came to a head in early 2017 when senior officials offered Trump charts and graphics laying out the numbers and showing a “hockey stick” spike in the nationa...



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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of September 11th, 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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Promotions

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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.

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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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