Archive for 2016

Good Ole Days Return: Nixonian Wage and Price Controls

Courtesy of Mish.

Californians longing for the “Good Ole Days” of wage and price controls under President Nixon may get their wish.

Wage controls in the form of a series of minimum wage hikes just passed the California legislature.

Price controls in the form of rent caps have spread to suburbia.

Please consider Rent Control Spreads from Pricey San Francisco to Suburbs.

Last year, a raucous city council meeting over rent control in Alameda, population 75,000, resulted in two arrests. Farther north, city leaders of Sonoma County’s Healdsburg, population 11,000, approved voluntary guidelines to keep rent increases to 10 percent or less.

Tenant activists in Alameda and Richmond — a waterfront industrial town of nearly 110,000 — are fighting to place rent control on municipal ballots this fall. So are residents of Burlingame, a pricey, leafy city of 30,000 on the San Francisco Peninsula.

The burst of Bay Area suburban squabbles doesn’t surprise analysts. The median rental price in the five-county San Francisco metropolitan area for February was $3,350, up 10.5 percent from a year ago, according to Zillow. Wages, while high for Silicon Valley professionals, have not kept pace for many other people.

Economists, landlords and developers say rent control makes the situation worse by restricting supply, resulting in run-down apartments and driving market prices higher. Tenant advocates, however, argue that caps on increases and other renter protections are critical in a housing market that’s ousting seniors and families.

Three Bay Area ballot proposals would limit annual increases to the consumer price index or less, which would result in hikes in the low single digits rather than the double-digit ones that have renters clamoring for help. The measures also limit evictions to “just cause” so landlords can’t simply toss someone out for another tenant who can pay more.

Landlords say they need to recover costs to pay higher property taxes or for property improvements.

The California Apartment Association is trying to qualify a competing measure for the November ballot that would prohibit restrictions on rental prices in Richmond.

Thomas Bannon, the association’s chief executive, said he understands tenant concerns, but it’s not fair to ask landlords to shoulder the burden for a housing shortage.

“Rent control has never addressed that issue,” he said. “At best, it’s been a temporary fix for a very small number


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How Bad Would A Nuclear Terror Attack Be: Find Out With This Interactive Nukemap

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

By Keturah Hetrick of Defense One

How Bad Would A Radiological Terror Attack Be?

When it comes to human health, all nuclear scenarios are not created equal. The Chernobyl disaster caused an estimated 16,000 cases of thyroid cancer, while the Fukushima power plant accident barely produced any. A dizzying number of variables go into understanding the damage that a particular nuclear or radiological device might have. But modeling the effects of such devices has become also become easier, and more public, thanks to the Internet.

It’s “no secret” that organizations like Al-Qaeda and ISIS “are interested in securing nuclear materials so they can use them for terrorist attacks,” Dr. Timothy Jorgensen, a professor of radiation medicine at Georgetown University and the author of Strange Glow: The Story of Radiation, told an audience at the Center for Strategic International Studies on Monday.

How might we be able to predict the effect of a particular attack? The type and size of bomb, materials used, detonation from the air versus ground, population density, and even wind can help us to predict increases in cancer risk, deaths from a bomb’s blast, and the timing of deaths from radiation sickness.

“The distribution of doses within the population determine the survivors,” says Jorgensen. “You can predict the type and severity of health consequences by just knowing the doses among individuals.”

Our bodies absorb radiation through the course of normal life experiences. For example, we absorb 3.0 millisieverts (a common measurement of the body’s radiation absorption, abbreviated as mSv) from a single mammogram. Eating 1,000 bananas adds another 0.1 mSv to our bodies. (Bananas, like all potassium-rich foods, contain very small amounts of radioactive material.)

Of course, our bodies absorb far more radiation if we’re near a more-potent source, like an atomic bomb explosion or power plant accident.

At 1,000 mSv, radiation sickness sets in as cells begin to die. Symptoms include spontaneous bleeding, ulcerated organs, and skin that sloughs off. But, you will likely recover, with only a somewhat higher chance of developing cancer later in life.

About half of a population that receives a 5,000-mSv dose will die. This point is known as the Lethal Dose 50 (LD50).

Doses above 10,000 mSv cause gastrointestinal (GI) syndrome, leaving the afflicted with less than two weeks to live. Above 50,000 mSv, brain swelling causes…
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Key U.S. Events In The Coming Week

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Key economic releases for the coming week include the ISM non-manufacturing report on Wednesday. There are several scheduled speeches from Fed officials this week. Fed Chair Yellen will take part in a discussion with former Fed Chairs on Thursday.

Monday, April 4

10:00 AM Factory orders, February (GS -2.1%, consensus -1.8%, last +1.6%)

  • Factory orders likely declined in February following a 1.6% gain in January. Falling factory orders would reflect the weaker-than-expected durable goods report for February.

09:30 AM Boston Fed President Rosengren (FOMC voter) speaks

  • Federal Reserve Bank of Boston President Eric Rosengren will speak about economic and cybersecurity risks at the Boston Fed’s cybersecurity conference. In February, Rosengren noted that “if inflation is slower to return to target, monetary policy normalization should be unhurried. A more gradual approach is an appropriate response to headwinds from abroad that slow exports, and financial volatility that raises the cost of funds to many firms.”

07:00 PM Minneapolis Fed President Kashkari (FOMC non-voter) speaks

  • Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis President Neel Kashkari will hold a town hall meeting on ‘too big to fail’. There will be Q&A beforehand at 5:15 PM. The newly appointed President Kashkari has said little in public regarding his views on monetary policy.

Tuesday, April 5

01:00 AM Chicago Fed President Evans (FOMC non-voter) speaks

  • Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago President Charles Evans speaks on the economy and monetary policy at the Credit Suisse Asian Investment Conference in Hong Kong. Audience and media Q&A is expected. Last week, President Evans discussed the “asymmetric” risks facing the US economy, noting that “we should buy some insurance against unexpected weakness by accepting a somewhat higher likelihood of stronger outcomes. Translated into monetary policy, this means being more accommodative than usual to provide an extra boost to aggregate demand as a buffer against possible future downside shocks that might otherwise drive us back to the effective lower bound.”

08:30 AM Trade balance, February (GS -$46.0bn, consensus -$46.2bn, last -$45.7bn)

  • The new advanced goods trade report showed a slightly wider goods deficit in February (-$62.9bn from -$62.4bn), reflecting a widening trade balance across foods & beverages, capital goods, and consumer goods. We expect the services balance to be little changed in February. Overall, we


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Blue Origin Flight Three: Pushing the Envelope

By Jacob Wolinsky. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Blue Origin Flight Three: Pushing the Envelope

Published on Apr 3, 2016


New Shepard flew again on April 2, 2016 reaching an apogee of 339,178 feet or 103 kilometers. It was the third flight with the same hardware. We pushed the envelope on this flight, restarting the engine for the propulsive landing only 3,600 feet above the ground, requiring the BE-3 engine to start fast and ramp to high thrust fast.

Jeff Bezos seemed to be a happy man tweeting:

We’ll share mission video including aerial as soon as we’re able to get it processed.#GradatimFerociter @BlueOrigin

— Jeff Bezos (@JeffBezos) April 2, 2016

Video from yesterday’s flight now live: https://t.co/vBvPYpGFrQ Great view of dramatic booster deceleration.

— Jeff Bezos (@JeffBezos) April 3, 2016

Blue Origin Flight Three see the video below

Blue Origin Flight Three

Blue Origin Flight Three

Blue Origin Flight Three

Published on Apr 1, 2016


A University of Central Florida experiment designed to mimic impacts between objects in microgravity is flying aboard the next flight of Blue Origin’s reusable New Shepard space vehicle. Principal Investigator: Dr. Joshua Colwell

0:05I’m Josh coil professor of physics at the University of Central Florida and


0:09the chief


0:09instigator on the collisions


0:11just experiment are payload contains a bit of dust into which we will launch a


0:14marvel at a very low speed the reaction of the dust will be observed by a camera


0:19were hoping to understand collisions in the early solar system as well as


0:22collisions between planetary when particles like Saturn’s rings and places


0:27where gravity is very weak like the surfaces of asteroids or the small moons


0:31of Mars the suborbital environment provided by New Shepherd will enable us


0:35to see particles moving and conditions they cannot be duplicated on the ground


0:38this experiment was built by students here at the University of Central


0:42Florida and we’re thrilled at the opportunity to fly with you origin

The post Blue Origin Flight Three: Pushing the Envelope appeared first on ValueWalk.

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Presenting The Mossack Fonseca Interactive Web Of Secret Companies (And All Available Source Files)

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Even though, as we said in our previous post, the starting role in today’s record document leak should be that of Mossack Fonseca (and its heir apparent, Rothschild, operating out of Reno, NV) the general population is far more curious to learn which names will emerge as a result of this historic crackdown involving 11 million documents and 2,600 gigabytes of data.

And while the full disclosure effort will take months, if not years, here courtesy of Fusion, is a data map of the intersection between clients, shareholders, companies and agents who have used Mossack Fonseca’s services.

From Fusion: “the map represents just over a third of all the data we have access to through the leak. We’ve chosen to show you 115,373 of the most connected entities so you can see how, in many case, individuals are actually related in some way.

What does that say? It tells us that the people who create shell companies through Mossack Fonseca move in similar circles.

You will notice the option to select, “Leticia Montoya”, who is a Mossack Fonseca employee. Through the documents we have connected her with at least 10,000 companies as a stand-in director or shareholder. Ms Montoya earns around $900 a month in the HR department of the company.

The other option is to see companies that are in some way connected with the United States.

The Mossack Fonseca Universe:

Meanwhile, for those who enjoy primary data, the full universe of currently available source documents is available at the following link. Based on a recent Wikileaks tweet, more may be becoming available soon.

Should we release all 11 million #PanamaPapers so everyone can search through them like our other publications?

— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) April 3, 2016

Finally, today is not the first time that Mossack Fonseca had made prominent headlines. Here is a Vice report from December 2014 with “The Law Firm That Works with Oligarchs, Money Launderers, and Dictators





Mossack Fonseca: The Nazi, CIA And Nevada Connections… And Why It’s Now Rothschild’s Turn

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

For all the media excitement about the disclosed names in the “Panama Papers” leak, in this case represented by the extensive list of Mossack Fonseca clients, this is not a story about which super wealthy individuals did everything in their power, both legal and illegal, to avoid taxes, preserve their financial anonymity, and generally preserve their wealth. After all, that’s what they do, and it should not come as a surprise that they will always do that, especially following last year’s disclosure by the same ICIJ which revealed a list of 100,000 HSBC clients who had been dutifully avoiding the payment of taxes.

What the story is about is the nebulous world of offshore tax evasion and tax havens, which based on data from the World Bank, IMF, UN, and central banks, hide between $21 and $32 trillion, where registered incorporation agents and law firms in small Caribbean countries (and not so small US states) make the laundering of money and the “disappearance” of the super wealthy, into untracable numbers hidden behind shell companies, possible.

So, in order to learn some more about the real star of this story, the Panamanian lawfirm of Mossack Fonseca, we went to Fusion which has compiled a fascinating story of the company’s history, founders, and key milestone events in its life. 

These include the Nazis, the CIA, Mexican drug lords, and of course, the U.S.

First, here is the Nazi and CIA connection:

Jurgen Mossack’s family landed here in the 1960s. During World War II, his father had served in the Nazi Party’s Waffen-SS, according to U.S. Army intelligence files obtained by the ICIJ. Once in Panama, the elder Mossack offered to spy on communists in Cuba for the CIA. (Mossack Fonseca said the firm “will not answer any questions related to private information regarding our company founding partners.”)

Here is the connection to Mexican drug lord Rafael Caro Quintero, and perhaps to the DEA:

Many times Mossack Fonseca has had no clue which nefarious characters were doing what with the companies the firm created – as when Jurgen discovered in 2005, according to internal emails, that he was the registered agent and listed as the director for a company controlled by the Mexican drug lord Rafael Caro


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The Onion Explains How Virtual Reality Will Change Our Lives

Can't wait…

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

In the aftermath of such "paradigm" flops as 3D TV, 4K TV, the "wearables" revolution, the tech world is now obsessed with Virtual Reality. Here, courtesy of The Onion, are some potential ways that Oculus Rift and other virtual reality technologies will affect our lives.

  • Pornography: New 360-degree pornographic films will allow viewers to pan all around the bed and across the room to where cameramen and boom mic operators are standing
  • Education: Students will have access to wealth of new interactive visual aids that won’t be updated for the next 50 years
  • Business: Provides another medium that CEO won’t understand but will demand be wedged into the new marketing campaign by June
  • VR Industry: Potential to see moderate growth in this sector
  • Tourism: Could very well grind to screeching halt once travelers realize they can experience Liberty Bell from comfort of own living room
  • Neck Pain: Cases of neck pain projected to triple in both volume and severity over the next five years
  • Music: Immersion in 360-degree drum kits will allow amateurs to thrash with increased sickness
  • Clamming: Virtual reality to have no discernible impact on clamming
  • Mental Health: Putting on a VR headset to discuss feelings of dissociation and detachment with a computer-generated avatar will be extremely quick and affordable





A Massive Shift Is Underway!

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Capitalist Exploits.

By Chris at www.CapitalistExploits.at

I was abruptly awoken yesterday by a “PMS day.” A Richter-like force, brimming under the surface, evidenced by the stomping, grumbling, and frustration that accompanies this phenomenon. As a husband, I’m grateful for the warning signs; I can hide (I mean prepare) accordingly.

It’s not hard to see change when it’s upon us. Identifying it ahead of time is a little bit trickier, but not much. The signs, like a grouchy wife, are often there if we care to look.

I have often wondered if the average Joe in the midst of the Industrial Revolution ever looked around and noticed the change that was coming?

The amazing changes witnessed since the late 1700’s are easily understood in hindsight. What is not commonly understood (in large part because we’re in the midst of it) is that today we stand on the brink of a technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way we live work and play.

But first, to understand the future we need to look to the past.

Let’s take the aforementioned Industrial Revolution, which can be broken down into 3 key areas of innovation and disruption:

The First Stage

The first stage of the Industrial Revolution, around 1780, entailed harnessing steam power. Remember those old steam trains and water mills seen now only in children’s books and third world hell holes? Well, what they did was mechanize production, resulting in huge advances in manufacturing.

The Second Stage

Around 1870 electricity, which provided mechanization and production at a greatly increased level, in large part replaced steam.

The Third Stage

Around 1970 the use of information and electronics to amplify, enhance, and automate production came into the fold.

Fast forward to 2016 and what is upon us, and taking place at an exponential rate, is a revolution driven by a coalescing and a convergence of multiple technologies, each providing a magnifying effect on one another.

Just as an amazing chocolate cake requires a number of ingredients, today we have multiple ingredients (technologies) coming together and forming entirely new systems. In doing so, these technologies are  completely replacing and disrupting existing industries, products and power structures.

It’s easily one of the most exciting and potentially frightening times to be an entrepreneur, investor…
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Four Major Fallacies in the Oil Market (Video)

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by EconMatters.

By EconMatters

We discuss some of the current fallacies in the Oil Market in this video. From Russia Oil Production, Inventory Builds, Saudi Arabia`s Strategy, and Market Sentiment regarding the rally off the bottom.

© EconMatters All Rights Reserved | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | Email Digest | Kindle  





About That Historic Q1 Market Rebound: 24 Of 26 Massive Snapback Rallies Occurred Within A Secular Bear Market

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Dy Dana Lyons of My401kPro.com

Stocks Should Double In 3 Years (…Or Drop By A Third)

In our April 1st Chart Of The Day, we showed that the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) did something that it has only done 3 other times since 1900. After dropping over 10% during the quarter, it recovered to close the quarter positive.

The 3 prior quarters that saw the DJIA accomplish this feat were the 4th quarter of 1933, the 4th quarter of 1971 and the 4th quarter of 2000. Following these reversals, the index had some interesting returns over the subsequent 3 years: it was up a lot…or it was down a lot. After the 1933 occurrence, the DJIA rallied as much as 98% over the next 3 years. Following the 1971 and 2000 events, the index dropped by as much as 35% and 33% in 3 years, respectively.

So which will it be this time? The size of the deficit that stocks overcame in the 1st quarter may give us a clue. At its low, the DJIA was down -11.3% for the quarter. Looking at the prior reversals, we see that the DJIA’s max intra-quarter loss in 4Q, 1971 was -10.9% and in 4Q, 2000 it was -10.1%. The max drawdown in 4Q, 1933 was…-11.3%, exactly the same as this past quarter.

Therefore, bulls can take heart in the fact that our prior circumstances are more similar to the 1933 event. And if history is to repeat, we should expect the DJIA to nearly double over the next 3 years to around 35,000. Of course, we can never be too sure, so we would recommend adjusting one’s portfolio to take advantage of both potential scenarios.

In all seriousness, one thing that may be instructive about such reversals is the overall investment climate in which they occur. The three prior events took place within secular bear markets. Additionally, there were 26 other quarters since 1900 which saw the DJIA recover at least 8% off its quarterly low after being down at least 10%. All but 2 of those quarters (4Q, 1987 and 4Q, 1997) occurred within a secular bear market.

Therefore, if there is anything that is to be gleaned from such large positive reversals, perhaps it is that they tend to occur within negative secular environments.





 
 
 

ValueWalk

#1 Performing Global Macro Hedge Fund Sees More Shorts Opportunities Ahead As China Bursts

By Jacob Wolinsky. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Crescat Global Macro Fund update to investors on 1/19/2019

Crescat Global Macro Fund and Crescat Long/Short fund delivered strong returns for both December and full year 2018 in a difficult market. Based on ...



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Zero Hedge

Johns Hopkins, Bristol-Myers Face $1 Billion Suit For Infecting Guatemalan Hookers With Syphilis 

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

A federal judge in Maryland said Johns Hopkins University, pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb and the Rockefeller Foundation must face a $1 billion lawsuit over their roles in a top-secret program in the 1940s ran by the US government that injected hundreds of Guatemalans with syphilis, reported Reuters.

Several doctors from Hopkins an...



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Phil's Favorites

Divisive economics

 

Guest author David Brin — scientist, technology consultant, best-selling author and futurist — explores the records of Democrats and Republicans on the US economy in the following post. For David's latest posts, visit the CONTRARY BRIN blog. For his books and short stories, visit his web...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Stock declines did not break 9-year support, says Joe Friday

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

We often hear “Stocks take an escalator up and an elevator down!” No doubt stocks did experience a swift decline from the September highs to the Christmas eve lows. Looks like the “elevator” part of the phrase came true as 2018 was coming to an end.

The first part of the “stocks take an escalator up” seems to still be in play as well despite the swift decline of late.

Joe Friday Just The Facts Ma’am- All of these indices hit long-term rising support on Christmas Eve at each (1), where support held and rallies have followed.

If you find long-term perspectives helpf...



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Digital Currencies

Transparency and privacy: Empowering people through blockchain

 

Transparency and privacy: Empowering people through blockchain

Blockchain technologies can empower people by allowing them more control over their user data. Shutterstock

Courtesy of Ajay Kumar Shrestha, University of Saskatchewan

Blockchain has already proven its huge influence on the financial world with its first application in the form of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. It might not be long before its impact is felt everywhere.

Blockchain is a secure chain of digital records that exist on multiple computers simultaneously so no record can be erased or falsified. The...



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Insider Scoop

Cars.com Explores Strategic Alternatives, Analyst Sees Possible Sale Price Around $30 Per Share

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related 44 Biggest Movers From Yesterday 38 Stocks Moving In Wednesday's Mid-Day Session ...

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

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 chaotic presidency based on his high-conflict personality, which was evident years ago. This post, written in 2017, references a prescient article Bill wrote before Trump even became president, 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

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.

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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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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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