Posts Tagged ‘pension funds’

Ties Surface in Pension Chief’s Exit?

Ties Surface in Pension Chief’s Exit 

Courtesy of Leo Kolivakis

Via Pension Pulse.

Michael Syre of the Boston Globe reports, Pension chief says he’ll quit over pay:

Michael Travaglini, who as head of the state’s pension fund is among the highest-paid government employees in Massachusetts, plans to quit next month, citing as a reason efforts by legislators to limit what he and his staff can earn. 

In his six-year tenure as executive director, Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management ran one of the top-rated public pension funds in the nation — until last year, when losses from the financial crisis made it one of the worst.

Prior to that downturn, the pension fund’s high performance earned Travaglini a $64,000 bonus in 2008, on top of his $322,000 salary. But now he cites the legislative backlash to that bonus system as a factor in his decision to leave June 11 and go to work for a Chicago investment firm.

“The issue of incentive compensation here is back on the front burner,’’ said Travaglini, who will formally announce his resignation June 1. “If you need the context for my decision, it’s an entirely personal one. I have a wife and three children, and I’m going to provide for them.’’

Under the bonus system, which Travaglini helped to create three years ago, he can make as much as 40 percent more if the pension fund exceeds certain investment benchmarks on a three-year basis. Bonuses for other pension fund employees range from 30 percent to 40 percent.

Travaglini said two legislative proposals would limit such bonuses, and thus make it harder to attract and retain talent to run the state’s $44 billion pension fund. One would limit the ability of state workers to earn more than the governor, whose annual salary is $143,000. Another would block bonuses for the years in which the fund lost money, regardless of how it performed against its benchmarks.

“Someone else can hang around for that, but it’s not going to be Mike Travaglini,’’ said Travaglini.

“Most people will say, ‘Good riddance. If you want to make more money, go do it in the private sector,’ and that’s what I’m going to do. But there’s a real threat to not being able to recruit and retain competent people here.’’

He added: “People can vote with their feet, and that’s


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Climategate, UK Edition: Following the Money, All €4 Trillion of It

Climategate, UK Edition: Following the Money, All €4 Trillion of It

Courtesy of Octave Tockfield writing at Big Journalism and at the Tick Tock Blog  

There’s a question oft-posed by the proponents of global warming… or of “climate change,” as the new term of art has it, thus allowing warmists to claim both the snowstorm now blanketing America’s East Coast, as well as the melting of that snow, as evidence for their theory.

“To what end?” the warmists ask the skeptics.  Or, in the lingua franca of conspiracy theorists everywhere: “Cui bono, my friend, cui bono?”

Well, lots of people are benefiting from the practical implications of this theory. There’Nobel Laureate Al Gore for one, who is on track to become the first green billionaire:  

al-gore-thumbs-up

Then, at the UN there is the organization that shared Gore’s Nobel Prize, the IPCC, and its controversial director Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, a railway engineer with no back ground in climate science who lives what has been described as a lavish lifestyle in Delhi. Publicly he oversaw a report issued with the imprimatur of the UN that the Himalayan glaciers that feed India’s rivers will have melted by 2035. Privately he has been acting as a director or advisor to a score of companies, including Pegasus Capital Advisors, GlorOil, Toyota, and Deutsche Bank, as revealed by Christopher Booker of the Telegraphhere and here.

But hard-core warmists, intent on skepticizing the skeptics, invariably ask: “why would the media go along with this poppycock?”

Yes, why are the media so invested in the warming notion, given the countervailing evidence, the fact that the last climate theory (the global cooling scare of the 1970s) was so quickly disproven, and that it is self-evident that CO2, that most persecuted of molecules, is essential for life… for plant life.  (When an elephant sighs, a tree smiles.)

bbc-logo

Well, the BBC, a prime proponents of warming theory, or AGW, has heavily invested its pension fund in the theory, and thus have had a major non-Scientific reason for their bias.  As revealed this weekend in The Express:

The corporation is under investigation after being inundated with complaints that its editorial coverage of climate change is biased in favour of those who say it is a man-made phenomenon. The £8billion pension fund is likely to come under close scrutiny over its commitment to promote a low-carbon economy while


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Prichard Alabama Files Bankruptcy Over Pensions; Wildcat Strike In Philadelphia; Oregon’s Financial Gamble

Prichard Alabama Files Bankruptcy Over Pensions; Wildcat Strike In Philadelphia; Oregon’s Financial Gamble

Courtesy of Mish 

Man falling as pedestal tumbles from beneath him

Inquiring minds are noting another city has been driven to bankruptcy because of pension promises that cannot possibly be met.

Please consider Prichard Alabama Files For Bankruptcy.

Prichard Mayor Ron Davis released the following statement Wednesday morning:

“I have looked at every opportunity available to obtain money to help fund the retirement plan for the City of Prichard. After careful review of all of our options, bankruptcy protection seems to be the only solution left at this time.

Over the past 50 years, the pension plan was amended by the Legislature more than fifteen times, and always the economic burden on the City was increased. This has been a long term problem that was unfortunately inherited by this administration.

After several lawsuits filed by pensioners, it has forced us to come to this decision, one that will protect the city and its residents. I hope that a solution can soon be found that will be fair to all. As Mayor, it is my duty to make sure that the City of Prichard continues to move forward by providing essential municipal services and to operate for the benefit of its citizens.”

Commuter Strike in Philadelphia

The unions in Philadelphia have not gotten the message there is no money and their over-bloated pension plans are unsustainable.

Proof of the above is in the Philly report SEPTA strike catches commuters off guard.
 

Tue, Nov. 3, 2009
Hundreds of thousands of commuters scrambled this morning to find a way to work or school after SEPTA’s largest union staged a surprise predawn strike, shutting down all subway, bus and trolley service in the city.

The walkout by Transport Workers Union Local 243, which began at 3 a.m. and caught commuters off guard, also affected Frontier Division buses in Bucks, Montgomery, and Chester counties.

The walkout even caught some members of the striking union unaware. Sly Wagner, a train operator for 17 years, showed up at the Fern Rock station ready to go to work. "I’m like everybody else," he said. "The only way I found out was when I went to the station and the gates were locked."

In the end, it was a difference over wages that sparked the walkout. Earlier Monday, transit


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City of Houston is Bankrupt (So are California, Oregon, and Pension Plans in General)

City of Houston is Bankrupt (So are California, Oregon, and Pension Plans in General)

Courtesy of Mish

Man being confronted by his shadow

Houston, we have a problem. We are bankrupt.

That is the finding of Bob Lemer, CPA, Retired Partner at Ernst & Young; Aubrey M. Farb, CPA, Retired Partner at Grant Thornton; and Tom Roberts, CPA, Retired Partner at Fitts Roberts.

Cover Letter

October 22, 2009
Name, Title and Address [see list below]
Subject: Finances of the City of Houston
Dear : [see list below]

Enclosed is our partial analysis of the very serious financial situation at the City of Houston. We would be derelict if we failed to share this financial analysis with you. This financial heads up will assist you in meeting your fiduciary responsibilities to Houston voters, taxpayers, readers, viewers or investors—as the case may be.

We feel a public discussion of the City’s financial situation is necessary and firmly believe that addressing the City’s financial condition is in the best interest of the Houston economy and Houston taxpayers. We believe the sooner the City of Houston addresses the financial shortfall the better.

Please bear in mind that the Houston City elections are on November 3, 2009, with early voting having commenced on October 19, 2009. Recent history has shown a large portion of voting occurs during early voting.

We trust that the attached article is of significant assistance to you.
We may be reached at boblemer@sbcglobal.net.

The above was sent to:

City of Houston—Incumbent Mayor, City Controller, and City Council Members
City of Houston—Non-Incumbent City Candidates
Greater Houston Partnership—Board Members
Houston Chronicle—Editorial Board Members
Houston TV Stations—CEOs
Houston Business Journal—Editor
Houston Community Newspapers-Editor
Houston Press-Editor
Municipal Bond Rating Agencies—CEOs
Wall Street Journal—Editor
Barron’s-Editor
Investor’s Business Daily-Editor
USA Today-Editor
Texas Monthly—Executive Editor
Deloitte & Touche LLP—Houston and New York

Executive Summary

City of Houston
Disturbing Financial Facts—October 2009
By: Bob Lemer, Aubrey M. Farb and Tom Roberts

The City of Houston is financially broke and it appears that the mayor who takes office in January 2010 may have to captain the City through bankruptcy procedures. The City’s unrestricted assets were $1.2 billion short of the already recorded corresponding liabilities these assets were needed to pay as of fiscal year end June


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Phil's Favorites

Map: The Countries With the Most Oil Reserves

Courtesy of Jeff Desjardins, Visual Capitalist

Map: The Countries With the Most Oil Reserves

There’s little doubt that renewable energy sources will play a strategic role in powering the global economy of the future.

But for now, crude oil is still the undisputed heavyweight champion of the energy world.

In 2018, we consumed more oil than any prior year in history – about 99.3 million barrels per day on a global basis. This number is projected to rise again in 2019 to 100.8 million barrels per day.

The Most Oil Reserves by Country ...

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Zero Hedge

Map: The Countries With the Most Oil Reserves

Courtesy of Jeff Desjardins, Visual Capitalist

Map: The Countries With the Most Oil Reserves

There’s little doubt that renewable energy sources will play a strategic role in powering the global economy of the future.

But for now, crude oil is still the undisputed heavyweight champion of the energy world.

In 2018, we consumed more oil than any prior year in history – about 99.3 million barrels per day on a global basis. This number is projected to rise again in 2019 to 100.8 million barrels per day.

The Most Oil Reserves by Country ...

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Insider Scoop

4 Stocks Moving In Monday's After-Hours Session

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Gainers
  • Cadence Design Systems Inc (NASDAQ: CDNS) shares are up 5 percent after reporting a first-quarter earnings beat. Earnings came in at 54 cents per share, beating estimates by 5 cents. Sales came in at $576.742 million, beating estimates by $7.5 million. The company issued strong second-quarter and 2019 earnings and sales guidance.
  • Whirlpool Corporation (NYSE: WHR) shares are up 5 percent after reporting a first-quarter earnings beat....


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Chart School

Weekly Market Recap Apr 21, 2019

Courtesy of Blain.

This past week was the definition of “consolidation” – a period of very little movement and volatility after a large move up to work off overbought conditions.  A slight gap up Tuesday was about it in terms of excitement for the week.  Bulls remain in full control.

We are in the midst of earnings season – it is not a great one but companies have lowered the bar enough that they will “beat”, everyone will clap and cheer, and we continue on.

The first-quarter earnings outlook has improved somewhat, according to CFRA, which said consensus estimates now call for a 2.3% fall in first-quarter operating earnings a share. That is up from the call for a 3% drop ahead of the kickoff of earnings season, but down from the 4.5% increase projected at the end of last year...



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Digital Currencies

5 Cryptocurrency Tax Questions To Ask On April 15th

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Authored by David Kemmerer via CoinTelegraph.com,

Depending on what country you live in, your cryptocurrency will be subject to different tax rules. The questions below address implications within the United States, but similar issues arise around the world. As always, check with a local tax professional to assess your own particular tax situation.

...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Silver Bear Market Faces Big Price Support Test!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

When silver, gold, and the precious metals industry were red-hot bullish in the 2000’s, investors could do no wrong.

You could buy SILVER at just about any price and it would go higher.

In today’s chart, you can see three large green bullish ascending triangles from the 2000’s that lead to big gains. But that was the bull market before the current bear market.

The tables have turned since the 2011 price top. Silver quickly formed a bearish descending triangle and fell another 50 percent when that broke down. This sent a vicious bear mark...



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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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Biotech

Marijuana is a lot more than just THC - a pharmacologist looks at the untapped healing compounds

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

 

Marijuana is a lot more than just THC - a pharmacologist looks at the untapped healing compounds

Assorted cannabis bud strains. Roxana Gonzalez/Shutterstock.com

Courtesy of James David Adams, University of Southern California

Medical marijuana is legal in 33 states as of November 2018. Yet the federal government still insists marijuana has no legal u...



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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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