Posts Tagged ‘Microsoft’

Meaty With a Chance of Cloud Calls

Meaty With a Chance of Cloud Calls

Courtesy of Joshua M Brown, The Reformed Broker 

And the winner is…Cloud!  The tech industry sub-sector with perhaps this year’s meatiest move is undoubtedly cloud computing.  Names like Riverbed ($RVBD), Akamai ($AKAM) and 3Par ($PAR) have all been putting up insane numbers this year, performance-wise.

My awakening to the group’s potential back in January came courtesy of a kickass cover story in Barron’s (Sky’s The Limit)- ever since then the cloud computing stocks mentioned (and some that were omitted) have been nothing but fire – in a market that is unchanged year-to-date.

Here’s a peek at the majesty that is Cloud Stock-age thus far in the Twentyten:

Regular readers know that I’ve been hammering away at the cloud theme all year, even hoping for the advent of a Cloud Computing ETF at one point this past spring, albeit in a tongue-in-cheek sort of way (we still haven’t gotten one).

What’s next for the group?

* I have a hard time believing that Cisco has much interest in trailing behind Riverbed in market share for very much longer.  Riverbed’s Steelhead product suite speeds up transmission of applications and data from the cloud to the end user, this is a corporate IT Holy Grail as it allows for the efficient decentralization that global entities need.  I could see Cisco or one of its rivals making a move for this name as this would give them the number one offering in this crucial space instantly.

* Akamai’s global "private web" video serving solution will probably continue to be the delivery method of choice as Web TV becomes a reality and online streaming continues to be monetized.  The wake up call for me on Akamai was when I learned that it was their technology that was the backbone for NBC’s serving of Winter Olympics video to everyone’s mobile devices.

* The bidding war over 3Par (between Dell and H-P) kinda gilds Rackspace’s ($RAX) lilly a bit when you think about it.  Rackspace took over an abandoned shopping mall in downtown San Antonio and built an amazingly scaled-up cloud hosting center.  Their fanatical reputation for customer service to their cloud hosted customers is the heart of their story, however – anyone can build a server farm.

* Microsoft’s CEO Ballmer said a few months ago that he was "betting…
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30 Statistics That Prove The Elite Are Getting Richer, The Poor Are Getting Poorer And The Middle Class Is Being Destroyed

30 Statistics That Prove The Elite Are Getting Richer, The Poor Are Getting Poorer And The Middle Class Is Being Destroyed

Courtesy of Michael Snyder at Economic Collapse 

Not everyone has been doing badly during the economic turmoil of the last few years.  In fact, there are some Americans that are doing really, really well.  While the vast majority of us struggle, there is one small segment of society that is seemingly doing better than ever.  This was reflected in a recent article on CNBC in which it was noted that companies that cater to average Americans are doing rather poorly right now while companies that market luxury goods and services are generally performing exceptionally well.  So why aren’t all American consumers jumping on the spending bandwagon? 

Well, it seems that there are a large number of Americans who either can’t spend a lot of money right now or who are very hesitant to.  A stunningly high number of Americans are still unemployed, and for many other Americans, there is a very real fear that hard economic times will return soon.  On the other hand, there is a significant percentage of Americans who are blowing money on luxury goods and services as if the economy has fully turned around and it is time to let the good times roll.  So exactly what in the world is going on here?

Well, in 2010 life is very, very different depending on whether you are a "have" or a "have not".  The recent article on CNBC referenced above described it this way….

Consumer spending in the U.S. has turned into a tale of two cities in 2010, with an entire segment of consumers splurging confidently on the finer things in life, while another segment, concerned about unemployment and with little or no discretionary income, spends only on bare necessities.
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INNOVATION: What made America great is now Killing her!

INNOVATION: What made America great is now Killing her! 

"Creative Destruction is Secular not Cyclical"

Courtesy of Gordon T. Long   

What made America great was her unsurpassed ability to innovate.  Equally important was also her ability to rapidly adapt to the change that this innovation fostered. For decades the combination has been a self reinforcing growth dynamic with innovation offering a continuously improving standard of living and higher corporate productivity levels, which the US quickly embraced and adapted to.

This in turn financed further innovation. No country in the world could match the American culture that flourished on technology advancements in all areas of human endeavor. However, something serious and major has changed across America.  Daily, more and more are becoming acutely aware of this, but few grasp exactly what it is.  It is called Creative Destruction. 

It turns out that what made America great is now killing her!

Our political leaders are presently addressing what they perceive as an intractable cyclical recovery problem when in fact it is a structural problem that is secular in nature. Like generals fighting the last war with outdated perceptions, we face a new and daunting challenge. A challenge that needs to be addressed with the urgency and scope of a Marshall plan that saved Europe from the ravages of a different type of destruction. We need a modern US centric Marshall plan focused on growth, but orders of magnitude larger than the one in the 1940’s. A plan even more brash than Kennedy’s plan in the 60’s to put a man of the moon by the end of the decade. America needs to again think and act boldly. First however, we need to see the enemy. As the great philosopher Pogo said: “I saw the enemy and it was I”.

THE  PROBLEM IS NOT CYCLICAL, IT IS SECULAR.

The dotcom bubble ushered in a change in America that is still reverberating through the nation and around the globe. The Internet unleashed productivity opportunities of unprecedented proportions in addition to new business models, new ways of doing business and completely new and never before realized markets.  Ten years ago there was no such position as a Web Master; having a home PC was primarily for doing word processing and creating spreadsheets; Apple made MACs; and ordering on-line was a quaint experiment for…
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There Goes Those Fancy eBook Aspirations from Apple, Barnes and Noble, and Amazon: 100,000’s of FREE eBooks from the Public Library

There Goes Those Fancy eBook Aspirations from Apple, Barnes and Noble, and Amazon: 100,000’s of FREE eBooks from the Public Library

Courtesy of Reggie Middleton, writing at Zero Hedge 

Sometimes the best laid plans can be put out to pasture due to a lack of foresight in regards to the ever changing, liquid landscape known as the Internet. What fascinates me so much about the Web is that it is the great democratizer, it brings down the barriers to entry and allows for unfettered information flow. For instance, who would have thought that your local public library could lay low the massive aspirations media and retail titans such as Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Apple? Put simply, why would you buy an eReader from these vendors for several hundred dollars, then go ahead and spend more money buying the eBooks for said reader when you can simply download the books from your local public library’s website into the equipment you already have? Okay, I know why those Apple heads would do it – because they want to spend money on Apple products,,, the eBooks may look cooler with that shiny Apple logo-thingy indicating that you too have donated unnecessarily to the Steve Jobs’ enrichment fund, but how about the rest of the vendors???

As a matter of fact, you can kill several birds with one stone simply by buying one of the recent Android phones. Google is really on to something here, and the growth potential of Android is simply phenomenal. When those Android tablets get moving at Kmart for $100… Whoops, there goes that Amazon Digital eBook business model.

Attention Kmart shoppers: $149 Android tablet on aisle 5 The Android OS isn’t just powering high end smartphones, it also runs barebones tablets sold at Kmart for the price of an iPod nano.

Think about this! Hundreds of thousands of titles freely and legally downloadable from your local public library to play on your $150 tablet with standard ports, HD video, the whole 9 yards, or maybe just on your cell phone. Android can scale pretty high in the capability department and reach rather low in the price category as well.

NY’ers, check this out from your NYC Public Libraries:

These books use DRM protection administered by Overdrive. Guess what platforms they won’t play on (okay, I’ll spoil it for you – the two front runners in the
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Google Swings for the Fences and Tries to Knock Apple, Microsoft, IPhones and Office Apps Out of the Park!!!

Google Swings for the Fences and Tries to Knock Apple, Microsoft, IPhones and Office Apps Out of the Park!!!

Courtesy of Reggie Middleton

HANNOVER, GERMANY - MARCH 03: The camera of a German Google Street View car looms over the car next to the Google logo at the Google stand at the CeBIT Technology Fair on March 3, 2010 in Hannover, Germany. Google's Street View project has raised controversy from people across Europe worried about infringement of their privacy. CeBIT will be open to the public from March 2 through March 6. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

This is an excerpt from part two of a multi-part series on the companies vying for dominance during the 3rd major paradigm shift in personal and enterprise technology over the last 30 years. This one will be a biggie (not smalls) and promises to create an investment behemoth out of the winner and relegate the losers to relatively niche markets. This is saying a lot considering the size of the companies participating in the battle for the pole position. I created this series to provide a truly objective, truly informed, and truly analytical (from an empirical perspective) knowledge source on this very important intersection in personal computing and distributed media. This series will end with a full BoomBustBlog style forensic report on the company we feel has the most to gain from these wars from an investor’s perspective.Those who are not familiar with my hard-edged, yet objective analytical work should reference past performance and media appearances for a quick background.

It is imperative that readers first review “There Is Another Paradigm Shift Coming in Technology and Media: Apple, Microsoft and Google Know its Winner Takes All” before moving on so as to get a thorough background as to what is at stake, who the players are, and what mobile technologies are being released into the consumer and enterprise realm. This is a lengthy, meaty, objective and information packed post that was initially intended to go out to subscribers only (click here to subscribe to our research services). I welcome you to compare it to the research you find available from technology, financial and strategic advisory firms, including and particularly Goldman Sachs (click here to see what I mean) and let me know whose analysis is more accurate, in depth and thorough (not to mention less expensive).

Google is Giant, Online Ad Agency Cum Enterprise Software Developer and consumer electronics and media giant! WTF! That’s right…

At the end of 2009, Google earned $22.9 billion or 96.8% of its total revenues through advertising, out of which $15.7 billion was related to its own websites, with the remaining $7.2 billion related to other network websites.

Licensing and other revenues accounted for only 3.2% (or…
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The Coming Apple iOS – Android Wars

The Coming Apple iOS – Android Wars

Courtesy of Edward Harrison at Credit Writedowns 

A model poses with the new Samsung Galaxy S Android smartphone during its launch ceremony at the headquarters of Samsung Electronics in Seoul June 8, 2010. REUTERS/Truth Leem (SOUTH KOREA - Tags: BUSINESS)

In my last technology post, I wrote that we are moving to an Internet-centric world where your computing device or operating system are less important because your data will live and breathe in the Internet cloud. Google, in particular, is preparing for this world because it has a dominant role in the Internet through search. But everyone is moving to an Internet-centric service and content delivery strategy.

The telecom providers understand that their networks make them gatekeepers who can extract rents from content providers. Having paid handsomely to build these networks, they are fighting to not become dumb pipes and resisting net neutrality in order to keep that gatekeeper role. This is one reason Google is trying to build its own network and circumvent the telcos. Eventually, I think the land-based telcos will lose and the battle will move to one between mobile operating systems like Apple’s iOS and Android. Although mobile phone operators may still be able to extract rents for a while longer than the fixed-line telcos.

The PC OS landscape

In the past, the operating system has been important in computing because it allowed the same software to be run on different computing devices, permitting users of those devices to transfer data easily as they were using the same software. But, the OS also benefitted as the more installed users one OS had, the more developers created software for the operating system. These network effects made achieving critical mass a defining factor. Going forward, network effects will also be important in monetizing OS-proprietary e-Commerce platforms like iTunes and Google’s new iTunes competitor.

One reason Apple was near bankruptcy before Steve Jobs re-appeared on the scene is because Apple’s Macintosh’s installed base had shrunk. I used a Macintosh from the mid-1980s but was forced to switch to a PC when I bought a laptop in the mid-1990s that I used both at home and for work. As the PC gained sway, millions of users like me were forced to give up the Mac. And, of course, that meant software developers gravitated to the PC platform and the Mac became a niche product.

The Move to the Internet-centric Model

As Internet bandwidth increased, more and more of what had to be done locally or over a local area network on…
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Why Does Steve Ballmer Still Have a Job?

Why Does Steve Ballmer Still Have a Job?

Courtesy of James Kwak of Baseline Scenario 

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer speaks at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas

So, after questioning the iPad, I bought one.* My primary motivation was that I wanted to be able to watch old TV episodes on the commute to and from my internship this summer, and I think an iPod Touch is just too small. I also bought an Android phone, because my three-year-old Motorola RAZR2 v9m (who comes up with these product names, anyway?) developed a crack in the hinge, and because I wanted the best camera I could get on a phone. (My #2 use for a phone is not email — it’s taking pictures and videos of my daughter.)

Anyway, catching up on the last three years of mobile technology has provided ample food for thought. I have a long post on the Apple-Google(-Microsoft) war rolling around in my head somewhere, which I will hopefully write down later this week. In the meantime, here’s John Gruber‘s verdict on Microsoft:

“Three years ago, just before the original iPhone shipped, here’s what Steve Ballmer said in an interview with USA Today’s David Lieberman:

‘There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance. It’s a $500 subsidized item. They may make a lot of money. But if you actually take a look at the 1.3 billion phones that get sold, I’d prefer to have our software in 60 percent or 70 percent or 80 percent of them, than I would to have 2 percent or 3 percent, which is what Apple might get.’

“Not only was he wrong about the iPhone, but he was even more wrong about Windows Mobile. Three years ago Ballmer was talking about 60, 70, 80 percent market share. This week, Gartner reported that Windows Mobile has dropped to 6.8 percent market share in worldwide smartphone sales, down dramatically from 10.2 percent a year ago.”

Steve Ballmer has been CEO of Microsoft since 2000. During his tenure, Microsoft came out with Windows Vista, perhaps the most unsuccessful operating system in modern history (Windows ME doesn’t count, since Microsoft’s core customer base was using NT/2000); it tried a “Microsoft inside” strategy in digital music and, when that failed, launched the Zune, which also failed; it watched Firefox (and Safari and Chrome) eat a large…
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The Big Apple

The Big Apple

Apple Introduces Video iPod Nano

Courtesy of Joshua M Brown, The Reformed Broker 

Apple ($AAPL) now has a market cap of around $215 billion.  Incredible, and it couldn’t have happened to a more deserving company – they’ve changed the world.

More astonishing than the number itself is the list of companies whose market caps have been eclipsed by the tech king…

Apple is now bigger than Berkshire Hathaway, General Electric, Proctor & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson, Google and JPMorgan Chase

The only companies larger right now are Microsoft, ExxonMobil and Wal-Mart.

One other thing to consider – it all started with a device shaped like a deck of cards that was created to compete with the Sony Walkman - The iPod.  Think of how many millions of devices sold as a direct consequence of the triumph and mass adoption of iTunes and the iPod.  The dollar value created on the back of that product pairing is absolutely mindboggling.

For the details of who stands where by market cap, click the link below.

Source:

The Most Valuable Companies in America (Fortune)


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The Top 10 Companies in the World; Emerging Nations Advance

The Top 10 Companies in the World; Emerging Nations Advance 

Courtesy of The Shocked Investor

Ernsty & Young has just reported that the top 10 companies in the World by market cap.

On top of the latest list appears Petrochina, with a market value of U.S. $353.1B.

"Investors clearly agree that the next decade will belong to emerging economies. While the industrialized nations will continue to suffer the consequences of financial crisis for a long period ahead, the importance of emerging markets is growing rapidly."

The top include 4 from the U.S, 3 from China, one from Australia, one from Hong Kong, and one from Brazil.

Latest Technology Innovations Introduced At 2010 Consumer Electronics Show

1. PetroChina, $353.1B
2. Exxon, $323.7B
3. Microsoft, $270.6B
4. Industrial and Commerce Bank of China, $268.9B
5. Walmart, $203.6B
6. China Construction Bank
7. BHP Billiton, $201.1B
8. HSBC, $199.245B
9. Petrobras, $199.24B
10. Google, $196.7B

Together, the ten most valuable companies in the world amount to $2.4T, according to Ernst & Young. In 2008, the combined value was $1.8T.

Out of the top 100, 18 now are from emerging nations, compared with 11 in 2008.

For the same period the market value of the 100 most valuable companies rose from $9.3T to $11.9T.

 

 


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CES: Microsoft Unveils New Smartphone

Note to self: see if Joshua wants to head the new comedy section. – Ilene

CES: Microsoft Unveils New Smartphone

Courtesy of Reformed Broker, Joshua M Brown

microsoftphone

In a bid to catch up with the smartphone market, which has almost entirely left Microsoft behind, the company today released the above mobile product in a bid to regain relevance at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES). 

So far only Nickelodeon and Baby Einstein have developed any apps for the platform. 

Can stream live baby monitor video and is drool resistant up to 75 meters.

No carrier announced yet, stay tuned.

 


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Phil's Favorites

What China wants: 3 things motivating China's position in trade negotiations with the US

 

What China wants: 3 things motivating China's position in trade negotiations with the US

Courtesy of Penelope B. Prime, Georgia State University

Relations between the U.S. and China have deteriorated sharply in recent days after trade negotiations broke down, leading some to suggest we are on the cusp of a new “cold war.”

President Donald Trump blames the resumption of hostilities on China. Specifically, he and his negotiators say their Chinese counterparts backtracked on an agreement to change laws aimed at enforcing the ...



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Zero Hedge

White House Planned To Use Huawei As Trade 'Bargaining Chip'

Courtesy of ZeroHedge

If there was any lingering doubt that President Trump has treated Huawei like a 'bargaining chip' during trade talks with the Chinese, Bloomberg just put the issue to rest.

In a report sourced to administration insiders, BBG reported that the Trump administration waited to blacklist Huawei until talks with the Chinese had hit an impasse, because they were concerned that targeting Huawei would disrupt the talks.

...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Commodities; Long-Term Bottom Being Created This Month?

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

Is the Thomson Reuters Equal Weight Commodities creating a long-term bottom? What the index does at (3) over the next few weeks, will go a long way to answering this important question!

Commodities don’t have much to brag about over the past 8-years, as lower highs have taken place since the peak back in 2011. After the peak in 2011, they have created falling channel (1).

The index hit the top of this channel the prior two months at (2), creating back to back bearish reversal patterns.

Softness this month has the index testing 2017 lows and rising support at (3). While ...



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Insider Scoop

Off-Roaders Are In Buying Mood, BMO Says In Polaris Upgrade

Courtesy of Benzinga.

A long winter and the worst of the U.S.-China trade war may both be in the rearview mirror for off-road vehicle maker Polaris Industries Inc. (NYSE: PII), BMO Capital Markets said Tuesday.

The Analyst

Gerrick Johnson upgraded Polaris from Mark...



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Chart School

Weekly Market Recap May 18, 2019

Courtesy of Blain.

China – U.S. trade talk continued to dominate the week.   A heavy selloff Monday was followed by 3 up days, with Friday moderately down.

On Monday, Chinese officials announced retaliatory tariffs against the U.S., hitting $60 billion in annual exports to China with new or expanded duties that could reach 25%.

Then on Wednesday:

The Trump administration plans to delay a decision on instituting new tariffs on car and auto part imports for up to six months, according to media reports.

...

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Digital Currencies

Cryptocurrencies are finally going mainstream - the battle is on to bring them under global control

 

Cryptocurrencies are finally going mainstream – the battle is on to bring them under global control

The high seas are getting lower. dianemeise

Courtesy of Iwa Salami, University of East London

The 21st-century revolutionaries who have dominated cryptocurrencies are having to move over. Mainstream financial institutions are adopting these assets and the blockchain technology that enables them, in what ...



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Biotech

DNA as you've never seen it before, thanks to a new nanotechnology imaging method

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

 

DNA as you've never seen it before, thanks to a new nanotechnology imaging method

A map of DNA with the double helix colored blue, the landmarks in green, and the start points for copying the molecule in red. David Gilbert/Kyle Klein, CC BY-ND

Courtesy of David M. Gilbert, Florida State University

...



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ValueWalk

More Examples Of "Typical Tesla "wise-guy scamminess"

By Jacob Wolinsky. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Stanphyl Capital’s letter to investors for the month of March 2019.

rawpixel / Pixabay

Friends and Fellow Investors:

For March 2019 the fund was up approximately 5.5% net of all fees and expenses. By way of comparison, the S&P 500 was up approximately 1.9% while the Russell 2000 was down approximately 2.1%. Year-to-date 2019 the fund is up approximately 12.8% while the S&P 500 is up approximately 13.6% and the ...



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Members' Corner

Despacito - How to Make Money the Old-Fashioned Way - SLOWLY!

Are you ready to retire?  

For most people, the purpose of investing is to build up enough wealth to allow you to retire.  In general, that's usually enough money to reliably generate a year's worth of your average income, each year into your retirement so that that, plus you Social Security, should be enough to pay your bills without having to draw down on your principle.

Unfortunately, as the last decade has shown us, we can't count on bonds to pay us more than 3% and the average return from the stock market over the past 20 years has been erratic - to say the least - with 4 negative years (2000, 2001, 2002 and 2008) and 14 positives, though mostly in the 10% range on the positives.  A string of losses like we had from 2000-02 could easily wipe out a decades worth of gains.

Still, the stock market has been better over the last 10 (7%) an...



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Mapping The Market

It's Not Capitalism, it's Crony Capitalism

A good start from :

It's Not Capitalism, it's Crony Capitalism

Excerpt:

The threat to America is this: we have abandoned our core philosophy. Our first principle of this nation as a meritocracy, a free-market economy, where competition drives economic decision-making. In its place, we have allowed a malignancy to fester, a virulent pus-filled bastardized form of economics so corrosive in nature, so dangerously pestilent, that it presents an extinction-level threat to America – both the actual nation and the “idea” of America.

This all-encompassing mutant corruption saps men’s souls, crushes opportunities, and destroys economic mobility. Its a Smash & Grab system of ill-gotten re...



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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.

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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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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