Table On-Topic Summary - 21-Aug-2002
A compilation of this board's financial/economic posts From 40735 to 40812

Post  40735  by  maldinero       Reply
Ark – While shorter contracts usually offer better rates and less total cost if carried full term, the higher payments put a higher stress on the budget for those of us with sub 50k/yr incomes, and don't offer enough wiggle-room for unexpected financial circumstances.

The beauty of a longer-term amortization is that the payments can be small enough to leave the average homeowner with room in the budget to make those extra principal reductions at their own pace. And seeing the impact of skipping a few of those highest interest payments near the top of the schedule is a wonderful motivation to continue paying down early.

Of course, the banks would rather have us indebted for life to the maximum limits of our ability to pay, and the best way to do that is to keep the costs hidden. Funny how they like to keep a borrower's R.E. taxes and H.O. insurance billing under their control so they can also overstuff those escrow coffers.

Whoever said, "An educated consumer is the best consumer." certainly wasn't talking about credit-card issuers or the mortgage industry.

Post  40736  by  Arkural       Reply
mal-I follow you. eom

Post  40737  by  Arkural       Reply
A Satire on Business Fudging

Post  40738  by  Decomposed       OT: Table ON TOPIC SUMMARY Aug

Post  40739  by  lkorrow       Reply
srudek, I was led to The Daily Reckoning from a post on the Raging Bull once, and started a feebie newsletter. That led me to another freebie newsletter, John Mauldin's Millennium Wave. I warn you that I can't vouch for these groups, they're not a mainstream WSJ or CBS Marketwatch and I wonder if the Agora's Oxford Club is political as well as investment oriented and I'm uncomfortable with that. I haven't dropped them because I don't know either way and they have some good food for thought, albeit bearish. But this John Mauldin did have a newsletter that spoke to your currency issue. I found it on his web site for you. It mentions an "Everbank," which offers various financial instruments, including some FDIC backed foreign currency accounts. I'm unfamiliar with the bank, there could be others with similar offerings.

Newsletter: King Dollar and the Guillotine

Everbank (click on currency tab on top):

Post  40740  by  maniati       OT: Ark: I've never done that,

Post  40741  by  smokesignals       Reply
God, Gold, the Fed and Capitulation..By Richard Lancaster..

My digestive system is not capable of assimilating food of such splendid fare, so I thought I would throw it at those who can chew it up and spit it out for me. Is anyone at the table ready for an elaborate meal? It may take some time to process.

.."I was really naïve about the depth of the depravity, the number of people involved, the propensity for situational ethics and just how easily the highest paid corporate leaders in this great country could get away with crimes that would send the likes of you and I to the big house for many years."

This is a list of items on the menu:
*The Science of the DOW Jones Industrial Average!
*The S&P 500 Summit and Descent
*The NASDAQ Crash and Aftermath
*The Gross Domestic Product Revolution?
*Inflationary Monetary Policy and the US Dollar
*The Derivatives Monster
*The Real Estate Bubble and Rising Bankruptcies!
*Total US Federal Government Debt
*Federal Government Expenditures
*Federal Government Surplus or Deficit
*Total Debt Summary
*JP Morgan Chase Stock Price Compared to the S&P 500 and the DOW, since 1971, of course!

Post  40742  by  smokesignals       Reply joke..I see it more as an ethnic joke. I know that there are people who believe that oriental people dine on cats.

A former neighbor of mine told me that it would be unsafe for my cat to be outside because Orientals eat cats and it just so happened that we had some neighbors that were of such heritage.

I myself do not hold such a view and I do not believe that there is truth to be found in that perception.

But, the joke you posted may be a continuation of that belief.

Post  40743  by  smokesignals       Reply
oops..forgot to click on OT..sorry.EOM

Post  40744  by  uponroof       Reply
smoke...great link!

What a fantastic compilation of current financial issues and trends. Each subject gains clarity in this easy to calculate, collective sum format. I recognize many of the individual references and do very much appreciate Mr. Lancaster's effort to consolidate. Still chewing myself. Thanks again.

Post  40745  by  uponroof       Reply
$ Falls vs Yen...Saudis Selling U.S. Assets

Post  40746  by  uponroof       Reply
Fears That Lending to Brazil May Dry Up...

Fears That Lending to Brazil May Dry Up

ASHINGTON, Aug. 20 — Nearly two weeks after the Bush administration threw its support behind a $30 billion loan to rescue the Brazilian government from financial collapse, American officials and the International Monetary Fund are worried about whether big international banks will keep lending to Brazilian private industry.

The president of Brazil's central bank, Arminio Fraga, is flying to New York for a meeting next week with some of the country's biggest creditors, including Citigroup, J. P. Morgan Chase and FleetBoston.

American and European banks have all been scaling back their lending to Brazilian exporters and manufacturers in the last six months. Most are refusing to comment on their willingness to jump back into that market on the heels of the fund's big loan deal.

Administration officials estimate that Brazilian companies have about $10 billion in loans and credit lines that come due before the end of this year. Much of that credit is being used to finance exports, which in turn are crucial in getting Brazil's overall financial condition back in balance.

Today, Brazil's central bank said it would try to fill the gap by providing up to $2 billion in loans to the country's exporters. But that strategy will force the government to use up precious foreign exchange reserves, which in turn will weaken its ability to defend the beleaguered currency, the real, from another downward spiral.

Michael Mussa, who was chief economist at the International Monetary Fund until earlier this year, said Brazil faced about a 50-50 chance of coming unraveled all over again.

"The numbers don't say the situation is necessarily hopeless," Mr. Mussa said today. "But if creditors think the risk is great enough that it is better to get out than to stay in, that becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy."

All of this poses a difficult ideological and political problem for the Bush administration, whose top officials had until recently vowed to avoid the big international rescues that became fairly common under President Bill Clinton.

Faced with the possibility of a financial meltdown in Latin America's biggest economy, the administration reversed itself earlier this month and supported the huge loan package for Brazil.

But senior administration officials say they remain adamantly opposed to pressing private banks to follow up with more generous lending to private borrowers. That, they said, should be a decision the banks make for themselves.

Still, administration officials are concerned. John B. Taylor, under secretary of the Treasury for international affairs, is in almost daily contact with Brazilian leaders and is quietly supporting the Brazilians' efforts to talk up their case with the international banks.

Administration officials are closely monitoring the markets' shaky confidence in Brazil. Foreign investors reacted to the original loan package by fleeing from the Brazilian market and driving down the value of the real.

The real and Brazilian government bonds have recovered significantly in the last few days, but the foreign anxiety is still widespread: Brazilian government bonds are trading today for less than 57 cents on the dollar, which means that investors are betting that chances of a default are still almost even.

In what may be an additional effort to bolster confidence, some Bush administration officials speculated about the possibility that the United States Export-Import Bank might be able to provide additional credit to Brazilian buyers.

Bo Ollison, a spokesman for the Export-Import Bank, denied reports by some news agencies that the bank was considering a program modeled after one created for South Korea during the Asian financial crisis. But Mr. Ollison said the federally financed bank was more than ready to approve new loans for Brazilian companies that want financing to import American products.

"We are open to all sectors for Brazil," Mr. Ollison said today. "If there is a creditworthy buyer and a U.S. exporter, we'll do it."

Post  40747  by  jeffbas       Reply
I don't believe the Saudis are selling over concerns about USA growth. IF they are selling, I bet it is over concern their assets might end up being seized or frozen. After all it is the return OF your capital that is most important, not the return ON your capital (can't remember who said that).

Post  40748  by  jcl22192       Reply
Wouldn't you sell too?
A lawsuit against Arab banks, individuals and Islamic charities filed on behalf of the families of those killed in the Sept. 11 attacks asked the courts in Washington to freeze the U.S. assets of the defendants. They include National Commercial Bank, Saudi Arabia's biggest bank, and Saudi Defense Minister Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz al-Saud.

Post  40749  by  pmcw       Reply
Decomp / TYC

I had reason to review some of my TYC posts and came across this one from December 1999 that I think you might find interesting.

December of 1999 was when Tice started a major rant over their use of "pooling of interests" accounting and TYC brought in a second set of auditors to review their books. When TYC plunged in the then bull market, I made a couple of quick buys and started doing some quick research. I didn't like what I found (most of this came from talking with employees of companies bought by TYC and reviewing their cash flow) so I quickly sold for a profit. Clearly, I could have made more by holding longer, but I sold for well more than double what TYC trades for today.

The following link is where I talked about what I learned from my friends who worked for companies bought by TYC.

Regards, pmcw

Post  40750  by  pmcw       Reply
The best places to win and lose:

For the last few months, I've taken specific notice of the selling price for the 60 companies listed in my daily paper as the top and bottom ten for each exchange ranked by largest percentage gainers and losers.

Back in the "good ol' days" a fair percentage of these, if not the majority, traded for double digits. Last spring I took notice that very few today trade above single digits. On most days, between 85% and 95% of the stocks listed trade in single digits.

It would be interesting to see a graph showing the percentage of stocks trading for single digits throughout the years - maybe even one that is adjusted for inflation since a dollar means much less today than it did some 75 years in the past.

Anyway, it appears that if you want to enhance your chances for volatility in today's market, single digit priced stocks is certainly the place to be.

Regards, pmcw

Post  40751  by  pmcw       Reply

Well, as luck would have it, my low buy in late July (7/26) at $1.20 doubled today. It was one of four buys I made between 7/25 and 7/29 that ranged from $1.20 to $1.75. I'll probably have to spend more to buy the shares back, but I'll pocket the four week double since it's IRA money.

Regards, pmcw

Post  40752  by  Decomposed       ot: Smokesignals, "orien
Post  40753  by  Decomposed       Waaay ot: Eating cats

Post  40754  by  Arkural       Reply
Payx-If or when things get better. btw, I thought I heard the CEO was rated the best over the last several yrs according to some sort of national pole.
People have to get paid in some way.

Post  40755  by  Arkural       Reply
Hlit-I'll need 2.62 to follow up that act if I was, instead I think I'll stick to my current plan: avg. down.

re:Single digits? For quite some time, can't seem to get them out of my mind, hmmmmmmmmm. Please post that graph/chart if you find one.

Post  40756  by  Arkural       OT-maniati...overdone baptisms
Post  40757  by  Tampathom       OT: GUESSING GAMES

Post  40758  by  Arkural       Reply
Xico-darts, just tooling around here..............might be able to git some around 3.75/.87, but just how much, well, that's another story. :-(

Post  40759  by  Arkural       Reply
Anyone-True or False:"...SBC, like other broadband providers that are dropping one-price-fits-all flat fees, said its "personalized" pricing structure will convince more consumers to ditch their dial-up accounts by offering cheaper but slower service. However, critics of such plans assert that providers are simply squeezing more money out of consumers..."

Post  40760  by  wilful10       OT: Smokesignals - That link y

Post  40761  by  spirare       Reply
Dollar falls as Saudi investors 'withdraw billions'

Mark Tran
Wednesday August 21, 2002

The dollar today fell from recent highs against the euro and yen following a report that Saudi investors were pulling billions of dollars out of the US.

According to the Financial Times, disgruntled Saudis have withdrawn as much as $200bn (£131bn) as relations between the US and Saudi Arabia come under increasing strain.

In the most recent irritant in already strained ties between the two countries, an analyst from the Rand corporation thinktank told the Pentagon that Saudi Arabia was the "kernel of evil". The fact that 11 of the 15 perpetrators of the September 11 attacks were Saudis had already sullied Saudi Arabia's image in the eyes of Americans.

An analyst cited by the Financial Times said Saudi investors have been deserting the US in recent months. Youssef Ibrahim of the Council on Foreign Relations, an American thinktank, said the move followed hawkish US commentators' calls for the freezing of Saudi assets.

But financial analysts reacted sceptically to the report. State Street Bank, an American bank, said there had been no significant shift out of dollar assets by foreigners recently.

"Foreigners bought $350bn in dollar assets since September 2001, 10% below the previous nine months," said an analyst. "This suggests that foreign appetite for dollar assets has not dramatically changed."

But there has been a shift out of dollar assets by American investors amid concern over the huge US trade deficit - $37.1bn in June - and over the weakness of the American recovery. Worries over the US economy have pushed down the dollar since the beginning of the year, although the greenback has been gaining in recent weeks.

Despite scepticism over a big Saudi shift out of dollar assets, Iran - described as part of an "axis of evil" by President George Bush, is reportedly considering switching crude oil sales from dollars into euros.

A committee of experts is said to be pondering the move, with Iran's central bank yet to issue a final decision on whether to drop the dollar. Iran has earned at least $10bn so far this year from crude exports, with oil revenues providing 80% of its foreign income.

In morning trading, the dollar was down 0.3% against the euro at $0.98 and more than 0.5% down against the yen at 118.10 yen, but off its worst levels of the day.,11599,778380,00.html

Our friends???

Post  40762  by  pmcw       Reply
Ark, It's been darn tough to buy a meaningful number of shares below $4. Sure the price drops there, but the number of buyers waiting for the shot appears to be significantly larger than the number sellers.

Regards, pmcw

Post  40763  by  spirare       Reply
Investments in the US; are are put at $750 billion...
Saudis Cry Foul over U.S. Sept. 11 Lawsuit
Sun Aug 18, 8:43 AM ET

By Fahd al-Frayyan

RIYADH (Reuters) - Several Saudi banks and Islamic charities named in a
lawsuit by families of Sept. 11 victims vehemently denied Sunday any role in
funding terrorism and blasted the case as an attempt to extort Saudi wealth

The suit has sparked rare calls by commentators and newspapers in the
kingdom to review traditionally strong Saudi-U.S. ties. Saudi Arabia has yet to
comment officially.

Offended that the lawsuit named members of the royal family, including Defense
Minister Prince Sultan -- the third highest official in the kingdom -- many Saudis
accused Washington of putting pressure on the Gulf Arab state to make it
conform with U.S. policies on Iraq and the Middle East.

In a civil suit filed in a Washington court Thursday, relatives of some 900 people
killed in the attacks by hijacked jets accused three senior Saudi princes,
several Saudi and other foreign banks and Sudan's government of funding
Osama bin Laden ( news - web sites), the prime U.S. suspect in the attacks.

The lawsuit seeks damages of over $100 trillion.

"This is an act to extort Saudi money deposited in the United States and a way
of meddling in the region," an official at Al Rajhi Investment and Development
Corp, one of several Saudi banks named in the lawsuit, told Reuters by

Officials at the banks involved said they were mulling a response but would not
act or issue statements before consulting with government authorities in the
conservative kingdom.

Some commentators in Saudi newspapers, which reflect government thinking,
blasted the lawsuit as part of a wider campaign against the kingdom and called
for a review of ties.

Khaled al-Dakheel, writing in London-based al-Hayat daily, seconded a call by
al-Riyadh daily "that Saudi-U.S. strategic relations are at the forefront of ties
that need reviewing."

He said a U.S. media campaign launched against the kingdom after the
September attacks, in which 15 Saudis were named among the 19 hijackers,
was being fed not only by commentators but also by officials and decision
makers in the administration.

Saudi and U.S. officials have gone to great lengths to stress that relations
between the two countries remain strong.


Some Muslim charities based in the kingdom, birthplace of Islam, dismissed
the lawsuit as "political maneuvering."

"We have no links to (terrorism)," said Sheikh Ali al-Juraiss, general manager of
the Muslim World League, which was named along with the International
Islamic Relief Organization and Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation.

"We do charity work to help the poor and needy without distributing money," he
said. "I believe this is an extension of the campaign against Saudi Arabia,
which has no logical basis."

Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation General Manager Aqeel al-Aqeel said the
campaign was aimed at the Muslim world. "They hope by doing this that they
will pressure the Islamic world into accepting an attack on Iraq," he told

He said Muslim charities named in the lawsuit planned to hold a meeting soon
in Cairo to discuss a plan of action.

The lawsuit alleged that Saudi money has "for years been funneled to
encourage radical anti-Americanism as well as to fund the al Qaeda terrorists."
It said Prince Sultan and former intelligence chief Prince Turki al-Faisal were

"Naming Prince Sultan is the equivalent of saying J. Edgar Hoover was a
communist spy," said economist Bishr Bakheet. "It is unacceptable for Saudis
that such individuals be probed."

"Assuming the court proceeds with this lawsuit, the Saudi investment
community, already in shock, will start withdrawing their money," he said.
"People are really going to walk out."

Saudi investments in the United States are put at $750 billion.

Relations between the oil superpower and Washington have been strained since
the attacks and by Riyadh's refusal to allow Washington to use its territory to
attack Iraq. Saudi Arabia has also repeatedly criticized perceived pro-Israel
U.S. bias.

Post  40764  by  Arkural       Reply
pmcw-Xico-You're telling me.I like to dream. :)eom

Post  40765  by  pmcw       Reply
Ark, Until the broadband (data) component is pulled from The Telecom Act of 1996, the Bells are screwed. Trent Lott is the major roadblock here. From what I've heard, he's even flexing his muscles to keep Michael Powell from taking the charge.

Ironic isn't it - the two roads to improve wireline telecom cap/ex are blocked by the two leaders of the Senate and all for non-economic reasons. One idea I have to fix this problem is to tie Congress' pay to several economic indicators (no particular order):

Employment Rate
Government Spending (cash and accrued deficit / surplus)
Dollar Valuation
Trade Balance

Start them with a base salary of say $2K/month and let them earn the rest via performance.

Regards, pmcw

Post  40766  by  danking_70       OT: Ikorrow re: Ghaddafi and t

Post  40767  by  Arkural       Reply
pmcw-Thx, Where do I sign to support your bill? lol. I think I'll use a moniker if I do sign:::::

Post  40768  by  Arkural       Reply
Dow/Naz-Couple of near term updtaed TA approx. tgt I came across: 9200/1440 a/o 19th.

Post  40769  by  pdowd       OT: Decomposed !!

Post  40770  by  spirare       Reply
the $300,000,000,000 in gold derivatives... and (the margin calls will come) make sure you got gold!!!

Current Price of Gold

(Voluntary Disclosure: Position- Long; ST Rating- Strong Buy; LT Rating- Strong Buy)

Post  40771  by  uponroof       Reply
Citigroup internal memo on gold dinar...

according to Richard Russell a Citi memo, 'for internal use only', refers to the report of Malaysia using gold for inter Islamic trade after 2003. This memo includes the reuters report I posted yesterday

Malaysia sees '03 debut for Islamic gold trade system
Reuters, 08.19.02, 6:55 AM ET
KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 19 (Reuters) - Malaysia and a handful of other Islamic countries plan to bypass western currencies and use gold to settle bilateral trade from 2003, a senior Malaysian government official said on Monday.

Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad's economic adviser, Nor Mohamed Yakcop, told an international conference on the proposed trade system -- based on an electronic unit of value called a gold dinar -- would foster trade among the world's 1.3 billion Muslims.

"The gold dinar could be an important facilitating move away from an inherently unstable and ultimately unjust global monetary system," he said.


uponroof-Interesting that Citigroup believes this tiny report warrants an 'internal use only' memo.

Russell goes on to state in his letter...

"using the 'gold card' is interesting particularly in that Malaysia is an agressive exporter with a near obsession for accumulating trade surpluses. If trade balances are settled in gold, Malaysia would become a fierce accumulator of gold."

Hummmmm... a "firewall against an inherently unstable and ultimately unjust global monetary system."

Russell goes on to wonder about the possibility of demanding gold for oil.


Keep an eye on this developing poker game.

1. The US floats the story of seizing Saudi assets
2. The Saudis call for asset withdrawal based on 911 lawsuit.
3. Malaysia (whose timing couldn't be better for adding fuel to the fire) calls for gold denominated trade amongst all 1.3 billion Muslims.

If the Saudis pick up on playing the Islamic 'gold card' this might get very exciting, very quickly...and may just incite a 'first strike' nuclear financial reaction. Yeah, don't forget that's smooth talkin, crisis averting, GW Bush in the White House these days....anything is possible!

Post  40772  by  maniati       Reply
smokesignals: Well, I finally made it through that article. I have one general observation about it: it covers a lot of ground, in its breadth, but, in terms of its depth, I don't think it adds much to the discussion that we have not seen already. It's not that there's anything wrong with the article; I think it's a decent summary of a lot of topics, representing a point of view that we have seen many times here. But, on any given topic, I don't think it explains its underlying reasoning with the same detail that we have seen in the various discussions of those topics that have occurred here on Table previously over the past year. So, despite its length, I would still view it as an "overview" or "summary" piece. As such, it's perfectly fine, and I happen to agree with a lot of it, though not all of it.

But, I also think the author intended it as an overview piece. For example, he makes various references to other sources, which he suggests should also be read. To cover all of those topics in detail would have required a book.

So, I'm not trying to be too critical. For a lot of people, the article might really be eye-opening, and I would recommend it to any of the uninitiated. But, for regulars here at Table who have read most of the posts over the past year, it turns out there isn't anything in there that hasn't been covered here already, and in more detail.

What I found most intriguing was the following, which appears near the end:

The bottom line for me in all of this research though, is the intuitive sense I get from all of the material that the only salvation we can hope for is a spiritual one. As a race of beings the human race has lost its way. Rampant secularism in the form of consumerism/materialism has run its course, and is now failing very badly. Secularism failed in the form of Communism, National Socialism and is now about to fail with Capitalism. Don’t get me wrong here; I’m not anti-capitalist or anti-globalist, I believe in globalization (but of a more benign variety – I actually believe globalization is inevitable and a natural part of our evolution) and I believe in a form of capitalism (but not one that consumes relentlessly and without care).

By reducing the role of Faith and belief in God to something purely private, modern society has become lost in its own material consumption. There is nothing to rally behind now other than cultural, national and racial biases - a destructive force. Without a quick return to “In God We Trust” our society will most likely implode. I am losing faith that our society has the ability to make that adjustment by itself, without the cleansing power of God to show us the error of our collective way and point us towards the correct behavior.

I think he's on the right track there, but with some qualifications:

- Yes, I agree that the only real salvation is spiritual, and that there needs to be more belief in God and faith, and less focus on materialism.

- But, "materialism" is just the tip of the iceberg, because we also need to re-evaluate what "progress" means, and how it is measured. Is the ability to construct tall buildings "progress?" What about the ability to accidentally contaminate our grain supply with genetically altered strains? Etc.

- Yes, there is a move towards globalization, but I'm not convinced that is an inherently good thing. In the long run, it will be critical in preventing pollution and keeping the planet livable. But, in the nearer-term, it is a weapon of the enemy, which they are using in an attempt to destroy us. So, there's no simple rule of thumb here. Some globalization is good, and some is not.

- Yes, capitalism has some severe problems. But, the enemy is exploiting the anti-capitalist sentiment on the left in this country in its attempt to destroy us. So, you have to distinguish those people who see problems with unrestrained capitalism and want to fix them from those people who simply want to kill all Americans and use the evils of capitalism as an excuse.

- Rallying behind a national bias is not necessarily destructive when the nation itself is being attacked. It might well be the most expedient form of self-preservation.

- He says, "I am losing faith that our society has the ability to make that adjustment by itself, without the cleansing power of God to show us the error of our collective way and point us towards the correct behavior." Ok, but God works in mysterious ways; maybe He's trying to show us, and no one is listening. To put it another way, it could well be that our society will find its way out, but that does not mean that the hand of God is not at work.

- Finally, I would point out how perilous these times are, for the following reason: the kind of introspection and "cleansing" that the author talks about is absolutely necessary, IMO, not only to solve our social and economic problems, but also to win the "war on terrorism"; however, that very tendency towards introspection could be easily manipulated by the enemy, and, in fact, that is already happening. So, we still need to do it, but it is a highly dangerous exercise. It's kind of like having major surgery: you need to do it, or you die, but it's still risky business, and there is no room for error. (I'll have more on this topic whenever I get around to all those posts I've been talking about.) Anyway, I mention this because I think the author is on the right track, but one should not make the mistake of thinking that our problems are solved once we decide to head down that path; it's sheer cliff on both sides (kind of like Knife Edge Trail in Baxter State Park in Maine, if anyone has been there).

Post  40773  by  ttalknet2       Reply
Gold analysts sceptical of Islamic dinar plan

LONDON (August 21 2002) : A Malaysian-backed plan for Islamic states to use gold rather than the dollar to settle trade accounts from next year faces major difficulties in gaining credibility, Europe-based gold analysts said on Tuesday.

Post  40774  by  Briguy       Reply
Portfolio is looking very very good right now...

which makes me quite nervous!

HLIT: With the stock being 6 cents away from breakeven for me, and after being down several thousand dollars when it went to $1.10, I decided to SELL everything but 400 shares today. Out at $2.48 and $2.56. The 400 shares that I originally bought at $6.05 will just sit there until I break even or realize a profit.

HD: Well, I'm averaged in at around $28/share. You can imagine I'm pretty pleased being I'm up 16% right now, and with a nice divy to boot. See $35 around the corner. Still undervalued when looking at historical p/e levels and earnings growth! This stock should be $40 at least.

BBY: Holy crap, when I saw this below $20, I got on the horn with one of my brokers and bought a bundle. Even went on margin for a big chunck. My broker thought I was crazy buying $32K worth of one stock, but I went ahead anyway. Sure glad I did. Stock is weak today because of Radio Shack, but that just opens up a buying oppty for those that missed it in the teens. Heck, I even bought 300 more today at $22.39 in a different account. Head over to the BBY thread for some good research that I posted.

XEL: After originally buying my first lot at $14, I thought I was in the money with an attractive valuation and great dividends. Well, the stock went to $5. So much for that idea. Needless to say, I averaged down in the $6's and $8's and my average is around $10 and change. Small loss right now but much better than the loss I had earlier when the stock crashed. Stop is set at $9.

MRK: Man, I was pounding the TABLE pretty hard when this was in the high $30's! I sincerely hope some of you bought in. The stock is at $52 right now. Loving it! Since I am sitting on some pretty substantial gains, I may cut my holdings in half. If it hit's $55, that will be the plan.

XOM: Well, I bought in at $44 and watched it go to around $30. You guessed it, I bought some more and doubled down in the $32 range for an average of around $38. Still sitting on a loss but don't care. I'm going to sit on this one for a long time and collect the dividends.

SANM: Added a bunch at $2.95 several days ago. Already up 45%! Sold 300 shares today of 1600, but holding the rest. Sold today because I needed to raise cash for another purchase. See $5 in the next couple months, if not earlier.

AEP: Stock just continues to rock and roll. Bought in around $25/share because the stock pays excellent dividends and was incredibly cheap for the nations largest electric company. At $34 now. As you can imagine, I'm pretty happy being up 38%.

EOP: A great REIT that pays great dividends and was extremely cheap in the low $22's. Didn't get any that low, but bought/averaged in around $24.4. Today it's at about $27/share and I'm up about 10%. Holding until at least $30.

NLY: Yet another great dividend paying stock that I bought in the $17's. Over $20 right now. I am looking to sell all but 150 shares today because I fear it's valuation is getting a bit rich. You might respond "SAY WHAT?!" I know, even at $20 the stock is only trading at a p/e in the 7's and is still paying a 13% dividend. But, I'm looking at historical p/e levels, and I think it's getting a bit high. I could be wrong. Nevertheless, I'm locking in some nice gains of about 16%. Not bad for a month.

GAS: I recommended this stock to everyone when it crashed about a month ago into the teens. Well, I'm happy to report that the stock has been on fire ever since that day. It's no longer paying double digit dividends, but even today 6% is still very nice. Needless to say, I'm liquidating all my shares today. I'm up 40.2% from my purchase of around $21 and getting the hell out.

I still have some losers, but the winners are outpacing them 2.8:1 right now and I can live with that.

Post  40775  by  Briguy       Reply

Post  40776  by  lkorrow       Reply
Ark, If I had to pick one, I'd have to say false. It has always been the pricing model for telcos to charge higher prices for faster data services. The other alternatives are flat rates, limited by the size of the bandwidth or usage based pricing by the megabit.

One might ask, if SBC had a flat rate, what speed were they offering, the highest possible? Or lower speeds that would put less stress, i. e., data on their backbone network, possibly lowering their costs. Are they trying to squeeze more money out of consumers? Sure, but higher speeds can cost them more.

A DSL caveot is whether it can be provided at all or at the desired speed. One must be close enough to a telco facility to get it. Speed drops off with distance, so there is a limit to what can be provided, unless the technology has been improved of late, which is possible.

Perhaps this quote -- "... convince more consumers to ditch their dial-up accounts by offering cheaper but slower service." -- is a type-o.

Dial is the cheapest/slowest service you can get. If the lowest tier DSL service is a similar rated speed to dial, the effective throughput of DSL should outperform dial, since it is digital. Analog dial services are often much more susceptible to noise on the line that reduces throughput.

DSL speeds and pricing are often slower and more expensive than cable, btw.

Post  40777  by  lkorrow       OT danking, Right, hear you. :

Post  40778  by  lkorrow       Reply
spirare, there's been a lot of talk about the dollar dropping, derivatives, Brazil, etc., but the POG is still going down!

Post  40779  by  Arkural       Reply
lk-thx for your response/info, it looks like a little catch22 here, a little over there, this plan~that plan.
been on dial-up forever and it looks like I'll be on it for a while longer, due to somewhat rural regions.

Post  40780  by  Warstud       Reply
Look into PKS! eom.

Post  40781  by  maniati       Reply
Thoughts on the market and interest rates....

Well, we finally got our summer rally. The more I think about it, I can't help but wonder whether it is not 9/11 related. I think the market is upbeat that we have gone almost a year without another attack. That makes more sense to me than any other explanation.

This is one rally I'll be selling into. I bought some stuff back during the July lows. (btw, pmcw, I had a big HLIT buy at 1.18.)

But, down the road, I would point out that the Dow still has not taken out its 5 year low, and I think that's going to happen.

Interest Rates....

I don't see the Fed dropping interest rates any time soon. As I've said before, I think we'll have to get some bad news that's not already in the pipeline for that to happen. I'm not convinced that the Dow breaking through its 5-year low would do it either.

Here are several factors to consider:

1. It's the level of interest rates that makes a difference - not the rate of change of interest rates. In other words, whatever "good" the lower rates had 6 months ago they are still having today. It's not as though the effect is transient; it is persistent. So, you might ask, "then why isn't the economy recovering better?" If you are really asking that, then it means you believe that interest rate policy alone can fix the economy. Who taught you that? You're not watching too much CNBC, are you? :-) It just doesn't work that way. Sorry. In any event, the Fed takes into account the fact that the current low rates have a persistent effect.

2. If the Fed drops rates now, then it has less room to drop rates later. And they certainly are running out of room. So, they need to be judicious. And that means waiting for things to get unexpectedly worse.

3. I certainly doubt that the Fed is anxious for rates to get any closer to those in Japan. They have to expect that, the lower the rates, the more money is going to flow out of the U.S. I think that's a major issue, and I doubt they want that to happen. I don't think the potential improvement in U.S. exports outweighs all the negatives, such as the incredible strain on capital accounts and financial markets, and the possible effect on the economies of other countries who export to the U.S. (which, in turn, affects their demand for U.S. goods).

4. There were a lot of unsound business plans out there, and there's just not a whole lot that can be done about it now. So, I think the Fed recognizes that some of these bad hands just need to be played out, and I don't think they will be moved much by more bankruptcy announcements. (But, as I've said before, I think they could be moved by a significant jump in unemployment, because that would mean that aggregate demand is going to take a further hit, and that would not be good.)

Well that's my thinking, fwiw. I would bet we don't even get a rate cut in November.

(As always, if there's another incident of terrorism, all bets are off.)

Post  40782  by  Arkural       Reply
Emc balance, stopped out at 7.90. eom

Post  40783  by  Arkural       Reply
Opps, I meant, filled. eom

Post  40784  by  Arkural       Reply
THAT Emc, was one of those odd fills, 7.75 mkt and they popped it to 7.90, my gtc 7.83 gets filled, mkt back to 7.75's.

Post  40785  by  pmcw       Reply
PKS - I would think twice!

In their June report they didn't even include a complete balance sheet. This could easily be because it was so bad in March that they knew it wouldn't attract any positive attention. I'll bet their current ratio is still well under 1:1. Their total debt to net tangible assets is probably going to take them to junk level. Cash flow on the March filing is also terrible. The only thing positive is that they are spending on cap/ex slower than they are depreciating. Of course this means that they aren't opening new rides very quickly.

Obviously, most of this bad news has been out for months. What's amazing is that it took so long for PKS to fall. I guess everyone thought they would have a good summer. The fact is they had a very slow summer and they are now heading into the slow season with a huge pile of debt. They are even carrying over a quarter bil of redeemable preferred stock on the books.

Anything can be played as a trader, but PKS doesn't meet the test of an investment.

Regards, pmcw

PS: FWIW, the vast majority of insider buying was an exercise of options rather than an open market buy.

Post  40786  by  uponroof       Reply

very insightful. The fact that it is being so carefully analyzed is interesting in itself. What are the chances it amounts to something substantial?....I don't know. I do know that gold is becomming more and more important regarding global political/financial issues (while the POG languishes of course).

btw-Is it me or were you others amazed at GW's sentence structures today. I am sure there are more than a few of his old english teachers out there somewhere going into spasms each and every time he 'delivers a message'. Not picking on his political positions, just amazed at his lack of fluid discourse skills given his silver spoon and current positional standing (most powerful man on the planet).

Post  40787  by  tinljhtkh       Reply
DSL versus Cable security issues!

It has been my understanding that cable broadband operates on a "net" rather than the "com"! At the risk of making a fool of myself, which with me has never been any risk anyway, I am just curious what Table thinks about the security issues surrounding cable access versus the traditional "DSL speeds and pricing are often slower and more expensive than cable," situation! I have been reading posts here about building firewalls and other security related issues and was just curious!




Post  40788  by  lkorrow       Reply
Ark, You're welcome! Perhaps satellite's an option? They have two-way service now (used to be dial inbound and satellite outbound to you).

Post  40789  by  lkorrow       Reply
Tin, the threats to your PC on cable or DSL are the same, since they are "always on" connections. Not sure what you mean on the net/com aspect. . . .

Post  40790  by  wilful10       Reply
Tin - Your 40721 monologue had a slight error

in this section:

[It is interesting to note that Cendent, the big hotel chain who owns Motel Six, among others, is eliminating 7 percent of its rooms and 15 percent of its workforce as it terminates relationships with non-paying franchisees! Motel Six, with its always on light, is usually the first site to fill-up along any Interstate! Whether any of those rooms are going is not my due diligence, but 7 percent are going somewhere, none-the-less!]

And NO, I'm not gonna nitpick your misspelling of "CENDANT". Cendant doesn't own Motel 6; it's owned by ACCOR - a European firm. But you were only 2 digits off; Cendant DOES own Super 8.

Keep up the great daily reports. You should be on tv,,,, or, maybe you are. :-)


Post  40791  by  pmcw       OT: Always on questions:

Post  40792  by  spirare       Reply
Corporate debt saps nation
Credit stress hits Depression level
By Jennifer Beauprez
Denver Post Business Writer
Sunday, August 18, 2002 - U.S. corporate debt nearly doubled in
the past five years - to $3.9 trillion by the month of May.

U.S. consumers spent that same amount on all services - from
haircuts to dog grooming - during 2001.

The burden, already buckling many companies under the load,
threatens to send the nation into a prolonged recession.

"We're looking at an economic heart attack in front of us," said
John Riley, president of Cornerstone Investment Services, a
money management firm in Providence, R.I. "We're faced with
owning up to the excesses of the late 1990s."

In 1997, U.S. corporate debt - which includes bonds issued by
companies to finance their activities as well as bank loans - was
$2 trillion, according to the Bond Market Association.

Moody's Investor Research now says the nation is in the worst
credit stress since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

The result, thus far: Forty-two companies defaulted on $46 billion
in loans during the second quarter, breaking the record in dollars,
according to a July report by Moody's.

The tally was double the volume during the same time last year.
For the first half of this year, companies failed to pay $76.6 billion
in loans, a 64 percent increase over the first half of 2001.

Moody's expects the defaults will keep rolling in through next
summer but predicts the trend has already reached its peak.

Yet as those defaults keep coming, the economy will continue to
feel the pain, quashing investor and lender confidence and
slowing hiring, expansion and new investment elsewhere.

The fallout could even lead to higher monthly premiums on the
average person's life, car or home insurance policy, said Mac
Clouse, director of the University of Denver's Reiman School of

Why? Because life insurance companies, pension funds and
investors buy bonds - which historically are safer than stocks -
with the intent of earning interest on that debt. Insurance
companies put 90 percent of their investments into the bond
markets, which will inevitably suffer when companies can't make
their payments.

"If there are a lot of claims and fewer dollars to pay the claims, the
only way they can make that up is with higher premiums," Clouse

The companies that don't default and struggle to pay down their
debt may still do harm to the economy with cutbacks. Experts say
more layoffs, fewer services and little new hiring will result as
companies preserve cash for debt payments.

"It's a bunch of dominoes that could collapse," said Mike Gasior,
president of American Financial Service, which trains and
consults for institutional investors. "All that money is going to have
to be paid back."

But that wasn't the logic back in the heyday of the late 1990s.

Companies borrowed billions to grow as quickly as possible. Cable
TV and telecommunications companies were the biggest
borrowers in their pursuit of building the world's high-speed
Internet and phone connections. Those plans collapsed with the

Telecom companies accounted for 61 percent of loan defaults
during the second quarter of this year, according to Moody's. Last
year, pundits compared the telecom meltdown to the
savings-and-loan crisis that cost U.S. taxpayers $150 billion a
decade ago.

"There was a lot of momentum, and you had to keep up," said
Clouse of DU. "Your stock price said you were a growth firm.
That's what the market was expecting. So, well, you had to

That growth was even more attractive because of low interest
rates, tax-deductible interest and the wide availability of money.

Just as investors chased dot-coms, they also jumped at the
chance to lend to growth companies, Gasior said.

"You could bring any debt deal to the market, and there was
money to back it up," Gasior said. "It was the same hubris of the
Internet stocks."

The 29 most indebted U.S. companies, not counting financial
companies, piled on $446 billion in debt over the past five years,
Denver Post research shows.


Current Price of Gold


Post  40793  by  srudek       Reply
Link to GRAPHS of Bubbles (pg #2 of Prechter interview)
I really only wanted to show the graphs of various Bubbles
and their aftermaths (including the current Nasdaq, Dow, and Nikkei) as these relate directly to a debate PMCW and I had some time back. I didn't want to be seen as promoting Prechter's extreme pessimism. I don't share it. I don't WANT to share it, it gives me the willies.

However, I wasn't able to think of a way to import the graphs or link ONLY to them . . . and would that, really have been fair? So here is a link to a relatively rare Prechter interview . . . and, yes, Jeff, promotion of his new book.

I've been fairly frustrated as of late, since I've seen some really worthwhile graphs which I can't post here. In particular, I saw graphs of the 1929, 1968, and 2000 stock markets CORRECTED FOR INFLATION. These graphs, imo, show with crystal clarity why PMCW's assertion of the 1968 market as a "bubble" comparable to 1929 and 2000 (and, therefore, providing evidence that a major "bubble" pop hasn't always ended so badly) is mistaken.

Visible in a long term, inflation-corrected graph, the 1968 "bubble" ramped up very gradually -- through MORE THAN A DECADE -- and then deflated at almost exactly the same languid pace. The Nikkei, 1929, 2000 stock markets -- along with all the other classic Bubbles only BEGAN languidly -- then inflected sharply and shot up like rockets, going nearly asymptotic in the last 1-2 years or less (100-300%+ gains in 1-2 years). The point of inflection is where I would say they became major Bubbles; the 1968 market NEVER similarly inflected and, thus, never became a classic, manic, Bubble.

Pmcw: if you ever see an inflation corrected graph of the 1968 market and aftermath I believe (even) you (stubborn as you are about always seeming to preserve a fallback position which is still "right";-) might acknowledge that it WAS NOT a "bubble" in the same category as the other Bubbles we discussed.

There was also a great graph pertinent to real estate values in the U.S. over the past 3 decades or so. Corrected for inflation (as probably all long term graphs SHOULD be -- but seldom are) it shows some interesting features. It DOES show a significant inflection point as the rate of housing prices jumped up beginning in 1995, along with stocks. In that regard, houses seem to be participating in a Bubble more than I expected. On the other hand, the graph also shows that the rate of housing price inflation clearly is much, much less than it was at certain points in recent decades (e.g., late 70's and late 80's). I'll stick with my assertion that, on the whole, U.S. real estate is not yet in a major Bubble . . . but is overextended and increasingly vulnerable. Keeping in mind how leveraged residential real estate is, even a small overextention can have profound consequences; that is on reason why, Jeff, it is NOT true that only the payment matters.

Well, hopefully the Prechter link will work; the graphs are on page 2. Maybe I'll figure out a better way to share graphs here.

PRECTHER: Understandably. Deflation and depression are exceedingly rare. As I mention in the forward to my new book, sustained deflation hasn’t occurred for 70 years, and the last one was so brief that it only lasted 3 years.

During the past two centuries, there have been just two depressions; one in the nineteenth century, and one in the twentieth. Most economists now believe that deflation and depression are utterly impossible in our modern economy, if not ever.

But there’s an enormous wealth of historical evidence that suggests that this rare event is about to occur.

What evidence?

Let me begin by stating an undisputed fact that every first year economics student learns about stocks: A stock certificate may have an objective value on one basis or another, but is still only worth what someone else is willing to pay for it.

When we look at a 100 year chart for the Dow, we’re not looking at a record of the prosperity of the corporations involved. We’re looking at an intimate record of what people felt that stocks were worth. When the Dow crashed in 1929, it wasn’t a reaction to a sudden drop in corporate profits. That came afterward.

Bear markets are a fear-based mass psychological phenomenon, which changes the value of the shares.

Post  40794  by  tinljhtkh       Reply

My posts are, and always have been, designed to create discussions! I welcome any correction of errors! As far as being on TV, I suppose that I could be the Ted Knight of Table and we could have an even Moore Mary time as we Tyler along the way!

Or perhaps:

Wilfull, I know that you will always keep the light on for me! ;-)




PS--I suppose that this is on topic and that truth is indeed stranger than fiction!

Post  40795  by  tinljhtkh       Reply
08/21/2002! With friends like these!

This is the eighth one of these nightly summaries that I’ve done. Some days I write the summary and then pick the posts to go with it. Today, I looked at the posts and they confirmed what my own feelings already were as to what the lead topic probably should be—Saudi investment withdrawals!

The opinions expressed below are mine and mine alone and may not be shared by “the management!” I hope that they will always fight for my right to express them!

I, like so many others of my generation, went through the dual domestic and foreign experience that was the 1979 through 1981period of American history. I’m not going to get into the nightmare of it all but I remember how that it seemed to start. Riots began against the Shaw of Iran that resulted in his ouster from power in Iran that then subsequently resulted in the hostage crisis that stretched through January 20th, 1981! Every night there was the frustrating image of nothing at all as the days piled up. Every day there was the “stagflation” that began to stifle the American middle class, and led us all to wonder if this was the beginning of the end of “The American Century!” It was a different time then, but there are some haunting similarities beginning to occur here in August 2002!

Among the things that occurred in the wake of the Iran-hostage crisis was the freezing of Iranian assets held in United States financial institutions! It seems that we froze a few billion dollars—a much bigger sum at that time than it would be now! The Saudi’s are frightened and we’re not so sure just how much Saudi money there is in our various modes of investment. From stocks, bonds and land, on down the scale to the recent race horse—War Emblem—they have taken full part in our financial society, returning much of the oil money to the United States that we have paid them for their product through the years.

I am reminded of an interview last night on The News with Brian Williams/Forrest Sawyer! In that interview, a Kurd leader, asked how much that the Kurds really trusted the United States after it allowed Iraq to gas and kill so many of his kind in the aftermath of the 1991 war, was polite when he said that they really had very little trust at all!

We have brought lawsuits against the September 11th killers, many of who were Saudi by birth, asking for up to a trillion dollars in damages! We have made it abundantly clear that Osama bin Lauden was Saudi, and of high birth! We have leaked Pentagon studies that are anti-Saudi in nature that have brought into question what the Saudi kingdoms intentions really are! And, we have taken their oil and their investment money for all of these years! The 1991 Persian Gulf War would not have gone as easily, if at all, without Saudi permission to use their land! They were in a bind facing Iraq’s huge military force just across their border, and we needed that oil, perhaps far worse than we might need it now!

Through the years, when we needed them, the Saudi’s have usually been there for us! They have pumped oil to break OPEC price increases, and have, in the main, added a great degree of stability to the world energy markets! Yes, they have participated in OPEC, and have been paid for their production, much of the investment for it paid for by American oil companies—most all of them publicly owned!

Iran buttressed this nation against the Soviet threat until 1979! Iraq fought a seven-year war against Iran as the buttressment moved to them and they accepted their role—creating a great dictator in the process! Now, in the wake of September 11th, we question the Saudi’s as we begin to undermine them and the great stability that they alone have provided! We talk of a free Iraq and a Saudi Arabia under a different form of government!

My question is simply this: Who will provide the stability when the Saudi’s are gone? Will we have the good sense to either abandon or greatly reinforce our embassies when they are threatened by the rising voices of the mobs? Will Israel provide the needed security as it faces almost daily bombings from its little democracy by the sea?

Out of the ashes of the 1979 through 1981 conflict arose a great bull market that rode on the backs of stable Saudi oil and Ronald Reagan’s resolve! Where will the next Reagan come from if we happen to need him? There is no presidential election until 2004! I cannot remember, nor do I want to experience, what occurred after 1929 as Herbert Hoover tried to cope with the financial upheavals that rocked the world and this nation that I have only read of in history books!

History will record, in its time, what occurred in 2002! We are in a new century and a new millenium that will be marked as the age of instantaneous communication through all mediums including the Internet! New, unpredictable friendships are being formed, just as we have forged a new alliance with an old foe—Russia! New foes will emerge from places that we have no idea that they exist! New scandals and weaknesses will emerge from within our own business, social, and religious community as they always have—to be exposed to the world more quickly than we could ever believe.

Nations, like people, only make a handful of really dependable friendships. They cannot really afford, if they don’t want to end up lonely and alone, to sacrifice too many of them. The word gets around very quickly with nations as it does with people!

The Greatest Generation rebuilt this world in a very selfless way. They used their power and their energy to create something truly special and great! The world sat at our table and partook of the prosperity and the safety provided by our moral goodness! Generations change and die, nations are made up of people, and they will, in their time, eventually rise up and walk away! Everybody, sooner or later, gets tired of being used!

Below are today’s links to posts on the Saudi situation!






On bonds, Arkural:

On broadband, Arkural:


Citicorp, Uponroof:

Individual stock profiles, Briguy:

Opinion, Maniati:

Market technicals!

The Dow approaches the key resistance line of 9000 as volume for an August day was OK! The NASDAQ broke the 1400 line but the narrowness of its advance would lead to me watch the qqq’s as a more accurate gauge of its actual progress because the fundamentals still look horrible to me! Downticks still outnumber upticks 4 to 1! The VIX is slowly declining!

It would be well to remember that this market is still “in training camp” as the starters won’t be back from vacation until after Labor Day! With their prior records for all to see, the market will probably go down when they take a look at it!




Post  40796  by  jeffbas       Reply
srudek, I would be interested in hearing where you disagree with "only the payment matters".

I concede that if banks have ridiculous underwriting standards requiring immaterial down payments they get what they deserve. Furthermore, even with a good down payment the price could drop enough for it to pay to default on the mortgage. That was most noticeable in my area after the bubble in the 1980's, when condo prices dropped a lot - but even then it was a minor issue in the total picture.

Post  40797  by  pmcw       Reply
sr, Let me ask a few questions to establish a baseline before I respond.

1) What total percentage increase does it take to make a bubble?

2) What rate of increase over what period of time does it take to make a bubble?

3) How do you want to include dividends?
a) Add them on at the end as capital appreciation as though they were stuck in a mattress
b) Show them as reinvested at the time they are paid

4) Do you mind if I exclude dividends when evaluating the NASDAQ?

5) Do you mind if we use the S&P500 versus the DOW to show broad market data in all periods since 1926? Please note that from 1926 through 1933 (and possibly other periods as well) the performance is very similar, but that I don't have the detailed data that I do for the S&P500.

Do you want to use real charts that are inflation adjusted using the CPI or a similar official figure? Do you want to adjust the Nikki for currency exchange? Obviously we can't do that for the Tulip Bulb and SS bubble. If so, please provide an official CPI for the Dutch and British bubbles and a CPI and exchange rate for the duration of the bubble in Japan. If that's not available, let's agree to use non-adjusted data for all bubbles.

Regards, pmcw

Post  40798  by  jcl22192       OT Decomposed:

Post  40799  by  pmcw       Reply
sr, I almost forgot - a little riddle. What is the one problem with the display of the charts on you link?

Regards, pmcw

Post  40800  by  tinljhtkh       OT: wilful10!

Post  40801  by  lkorrow       Reply
pmcw, Thanks, I didn't realize "always on" was what Tin meant by net/com. There's also a way to disconnect your ISP connection logically. If you click "Start" on lower left of the desktop, then Run, enter "winipcfg," and hit "ok," you can do a "release" on your IP address. This is very handy if you have to shut down your firewall to do maintenance that requires no applications running. Entering "renew" will connect you again.

On TriMedia, I think 256Kb is just fine for an occassional video. Faster usualy produces a better video, but the video windows are small anyway and are often set for a particular speed. The higher speeds are handy if you do a lot of downloads. I'd discount 3Mb right off the top. I get about 1.5Mb on Time Warner's Roadrunner. I occassionally see the video freeze for a few seconds. The Internet has good and bad days.

As you probably know, but I'll document here for others, you can still get poor performance and it can have many sources:

- Oversubscription by your ISP, i. e., they put too many subscribers on one access circuit, which slows everyone down, regardless of speed. The ole funnel effect. Higher speed circuits do get a slightly higher priority on the network routers or switches.

- Insufficent capacity on the ISP's backbone networks, which can slow everyone down. One can travel many networks to get the data from a web site to your PC.

- Inadequate or lack of peering (direct connections between ISP networks). Peering points get data to/from the destination network quicker.

- Congestion at public peering points, the infamous "NAPs' or network access points.

- Servers can be bogged down due to memory, CPU utilization, or just too many people accessing it.

- Web pages will be faster, but are still are limited a bit by html, etc., code.

- your access circuit is out of spec. The ISP can check this.

- your own PC is messed up

- Timing, or luck of the draw. Your neighbor or people anywhere, can be downloading huge files, watching movies, playing 3D games, etc., which can create transient capacity issues.

Amazing it all works! :-)

Good luck with your new service.

Post  40802  by  pluck888ca       Reply
Attention For Raging Bull Members to look at. I do not own them, but they are breaking out with stronger volume. Good luck in your trading.
United Surgical Partners International (USPI) is breaking out of an ascending triangle with strong volume. USPI has a RS3 rating of 91.
Gymboree (GYMB) is breaking out above the 16.00 resistance line with strong volume. On the daily chart you can see a classic 1,2,3 lower bottom.
Penn National Gaming (PENN) is breaking out above the 18.00 resistance level to a 90-day high with increasing volume. PENN has a RS3 rating of 82.
SanDisk (SNDK) is breaking out above the 16.00 resistance line with strong volume. The 18.00 area serves as its next resistance point.
Doral (DORL) is breaking out of a symmetrical triangle with increasing volume. On the daily Doral tried to break lower, but the bulls pulled it up and it is now breaking above the resistance on the symmetrical triangle. DORL has a RS3 rating of 94.
Global Imaging Systems (GISX) is breaking out above the resistance point (21.00) to new highs with above average volume.

(Voluntary Disclosure: Position- No Position)

Post  40803  by  srudek       Reply
pmcw: Arithmetic vs. Log scale is my primary complaint. I also think that all dollar denominated, large-time-scale economic graphs should correct for inflation; especially if they cover the 70's decade. I could probably find another half-dozen things which would make me happier about these graphs, but this was the first time I'd seen all the major Bubbles lined up for any sort of comparison. Do you have better graphs?

Post  40804  by  clo       Reply
Oh Tin! Stolen data reveal undercover cops

Thank you for your recap of the days market news!
I think you are Our Dan Rather, willing to go into any fox hole to cover the news. ;))clo

Surveillance firm’s client list is stolen and posted on Internet; undercover police officers, Secret Service names revealed

By Bob Sullivan
Aug. 20 — Computer intruders have allegedly broken into the online files of a Florida company that provides surveillance technology to the U.S. military, federal agencies and local police forces, and posted confidential information, including the names and e-mail addresses of undercover police officers on a public Web site, has learned. contacted each law enforcement official whose e-mail address was taken from the AID files and listed on an Internet page — 349 in all. Of those who replied, none said they knew their information had been made public until they were contacted by
for the complete article:

Post  40805  by  lkorrow       Reply
MetLife (MET) IT profiled in CIO magazine

Tin, Since you are an alumni and we had such an interesting discussion here on insurance companies and MetLife, I thought you might like to see this article.

Case Study: Economies of Scale

Saddled with numerous disparate systems after an
aggressive acquisition binge, MetLife needed to get
integrated to cash in on its size and improve customer
service. Here's how it did it.

Ask the Source: Submit questions to the MetLife execs who steered its integration.

Post  40806  by  pmcw       Reply
sr, I've got very good data on the S&P500, the CPI and the NASDAQ, but nothing on the Nikki, Tulip Bulbs, DOW, coins or SS. With the CPI I could easily adjust the graphs which I agree has merit. However, if I was going to adjust one I would have to adjust them all.

I've kept pace tracking the S&P500 of the 1929 to 1932 crash in relation to the NASDAQ of 2000 forward, but I've not included the effect of dividends of of the CPI. I imagine doing so would put the bottoms even closer than they were last month. Of course, if the NAZ follows the S&P of '29 it's not due to bottom until next January.

My real complaint is similar to yours, but more easily said that none of the graphs uses a common scale for the X or Y axis.

If you take a look at the Tulip Bulbs they went up 6,000% in three years. The SS 800% in one year, the DOW29 550% in 8 years, the Nikki 1,000% in 10 years, the NAZ2000 650% in five years and the DOW2000 400% in ten years. Everything's the same - just different - as they say.

I think our major difference of opinion was actually resolved. At the start of our debate you seemed to be willing to take the side that we must suffer a deflationary depression and I said that I didn't feel it was a must - just a very reasonable chance. About a week later you said something very similar. Please don't take this as me saying you came to my side. I don't think that's the case at all. I just think you have a natural tendency to debate and like to therefore take a side in an issue even if your real opinion is more moderate.

I also feel one of the things that differentiates this bubble from 1929 and, yes, the much less significant bubble of the 60's is it's narrowness in scope (industry, etc.). It was huge in market cap, but at the same time it was expanding there were more stocks going down than were going up (true in 98, 99 and 00). The huge similarity of all bubbles is the gross inefficiency of invested capital (mostly debt). This takes time to correct.

The other issue I feel is important to understand is that interest rates can be reduced in two ways. One is by the Fed and the other is by the supply of money from savings getting ahead of the demand for credit. If you take a look at the M's (M1, 2 and 3) it is a pleasant surprise to see savings increasing even while we keep hearing reports of credit expanding (some of these are grossly exaggerated and obviously don't take into consideration reorganization of debt).

I remain convinced that if we can get cap/ex jump started before the consumer wears out that we won't see a deep economic problem (on the scale of what has followed most bubbles). However, there is no strong evidence this will happen. Therefore I remain very cautious and true to my focus strategy.

Regards, pmcw

Post  40807  by  pmcw       Reply
The Evolution of Math

Teaching Math in 1950:

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is 4/5 of the price.
What is his profit?

Teaching Math in 1960:

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is 4/5 of the price, or $80.
What is his profit?

Teaching Math in 1970:

A logger exchanges a set "L" of lumber for a set "M" of money. The cardinality of set "M" is 100. Each element is worth one dollar. Make 100 dots representing the elements of the set "M." The set "C", the cost of production contains 20 fewer points than set "M." Represent the set "C" as a subset of set "M" and answer the following question:
What is the cardinality of the set "P" of profits?

Teaching Math in 1980:

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is $80 and his profit is $20. Your assignment: Underline the number 20.

Teaching Math in 1990:

By cutting down beautiful forest trees, the logger makes $20. What do you think of this way of making a living? Topic for class participation after answering the question:
How did the forest birds and squirrels "feel" as the logger cut down the trees?
There are no wrong answers.

Teaching Math in 2002 (Arthur Anderson Employment Exam):

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is $120.
Show the profit to be $60.

Post  40808  by  Briguy       Reply
Rally may be short lived...

I don't know about you people, but I feel this rally is going to be short-lived. 3 reasons why: 1) Stocks are now approaching overbought levels 2)Watch what happens when the Saudi's, who are threating to pull almost $800 BILLION out of US investments, actually follow through and do it! This will not be good for US equities! 3) War with Iraq is all but certain. If I were an investor without oil stocks in their portfolio, I'd consider adding them quick. XOM is my top pick.

Remember, buy when everyone is selling and SELL when everyone is buying!

Post  40809  by  lkorrow       Reply

I received an email on free magazines and found that the site can be useful for research. It lists trade publications on various topics in the left-hand column. A search engine can be used to find the magazines if they're on the web . . .

Knowing the interest in telecom, fiber, cable, etc., on Table, I highly recommend Lightwave to those so inclined. Warning, though, it is very technical.

Post  40810  by  lkorrow       Reply
Research oops . . .

link is

Post  40811  by  lkorrow       Reply
Briguy, I was thinking about oil. Wonder which companies have the least exposure to Middle Eastern oil . . .

Someone had posted this link a few days ago. The chart is a bit shocking.

Post  40812  by  wilful10       OT: Tin - You lost me with