Here is what has caught my eye today:

Mark-to-Make-Believe Turns Junk Loans to Gold (Bloomberg)

Distressed Real Estate Continues to Be a Growth Industry (Real Property Alpha)

Social Security makes it official: No COLA in 2010 (Yahoo Finance)

The $800 Billion Deception (Newsweek)

Weak Dollar Equals Strong Stocks, For Now (Barron’s)

Perils of a Talking Head (Capital Gains and Games)

30 Resources to Find the Data You Need (Flowing Data)

Anything worthwhile catching your eye?

Category: Financial Press

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

26 Responses to “Thursday Reads”

  1. dss says:

    This article by Daniel Gross caught my eye.

    Private equity firms are offering IPO’s of their holdings purchased at fire sale prices.

    Like insiders who are selling as well after purchases at the bottom.

  2. dss says:

    The $800 billion deception is also by Gross.

  3. SOLOMON BANDA says:

    Boy, 6, floats away in homemade balloon in Colo.

  4. just-a-thought says:

    Real Clear World has this under the title ‘ The man who holds the EU hostage ‘ …..interesting read

  5. Many might recall I was experimenting with frequencies and their effects on the body and mind a while back. I still do that. I found another site just the other day that delves into the world of non-alcoholic and non-drug ‘highs’ that are all around us. I am most interested in the audio consciousness shifters. I’m still experimenting here (especially with the sound waves that affect dream states and sleep states) but some of these seem to have a significant effect. You might want to try the ones designed to wake you up in the morning in the place of your regular cup of java. I was able to get the sleep out of my system faster with the help of these and I had had less sleep than normal. The testing continues….

  6. “The Obama Administration has reportedly told the British government that it intends to announce an escalation of another 45,000 troops in Afghanistan, potentially as soon as next week.

    The report comes despite claims that the Obama Administration is continuing to hold talks about the strategy, though this seems to be more based on the question of whether to emphasize the failed battle against the Taliban or focus what will soon be over 100,000 troops on fighting the roughly 100 al-Qaeda members reportedly in the nation…

    Several Democrats, including House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, have expressed reservations about the massive escalation, particularly coming just seven months after the administration’s last escalation. Yet Rep. Hoyer urged fellow Democrats to go along with whatever President Obama decides.”
    “The United States Supreme Court granted a request Tuesday to delay its decision on whether the Obama administration may continue to block the release of images depicting the torture of terror war detainees in U.S. custody.

    The decision to delay comes as Congress and the Obama administration appear to have agreed on the passage of a new law that would delegate all authority over the photos to the Secretary of Defense, effectively removing the courts from the process…”
    “NEW YORK ( — Despite concerted government-led and lender-supported efforts to prevent foreclosures, the number of filings hit a record high in the third quarter, according to a report issued Thursday.

    “They were the worst three months of all time,” said Rick Sharga, spokesman for RealtyTrac, an online marketer of foreclosed homes.
    During that time, 937,840 homes received a foreclosure letter — whether a default notice, auction notice or bank repossession, the RealtyTrac report said. That means one in every 136 U.S. homes were in foreclosure, which is a 5% increase from the second quarter and a 23% jump over the third quarter of 2008…”

    I think I was Wrong about, just, how bad ol’ 44 was going to turn out..Sucks for me..

  7. Bruce in Tn says:

    oil 77.55

    If you look through the old reports this is by far the lowest refinery utilization in a long time…

    Could this have anything to do with the recent run-up?

  8. dblwyo says:

    This is the most thoughtful and useful piece I’ve seen in a very long while…ties a lot of things together and is pragmatic and realistic about how they impact your investment strategy:

    Know what to worry about and when if you don’t want to get spooked out of a rally–or get killed in a correction

    What me worry?

    On a day when the Dow Jones Industrial Average closes above 10,000 for the first time in a year and when the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index closes within kissing distance of 1100 at 1092 ?

    Of course.

    When the market is rallying and everyone is getting kind of giddy, it’s exactly when you should be worrying. You don’t want to head for the exits just because an index has crossed some arbitrary number. That’s silly. But you would like to know what the chances are that something will go wrong.

    How bad it might be if something did go wrong.

    And when. Don’t forget the “when.” Deciding to sell because you’re worried that something bad is set to happen in 12 months is a guaranteed way to leave a big chunk of change on the table.

    So what are my worries and what timetable are they running on?

  9. Michael M says:

    How to loose 63% in two years without even playing the stock market. And the building is still 78% full.

    “The company pays $31 million for the 11-story building at 3 MacArthur Place as it aims to buy $500 million worth of commercial properties in California. The property last sold for $83 million in 2007.”,0,465527.story

  10. Thor says:

    Common – very cool!!

  11. Thor says:

    Common – which one do you use to wake up in the morning?

  12. Michael M says:

    Impenetrable: Despite widespread hope that China will help pull the world out of recession, foreigners are finding it as arduous as ever to do business there

    The Next Asia: Opportunities and Challenges for a New Globalisation, Review of new book by Stephen Roach

    Oct. 15 (Bloomberg) — A fund associated with buyout firm TPG is exploiting an unintended wrinkle in the $650 billion market for collateralized debt obligations, sparking a revolt among investors that hold the safest portions of the securities.

    Is Citi Back To Its Old Accounting Tricks; And Are Accountants Papering Over A $735 Billion Valuation Hole?

  13. rohnin says:

    This piece on the $8K credit was interesting:

    “Ted Gayer, a scholar at the liberal Brookings Institution, argued in a recent paper that the credit costs the government about $43,000 for each additional home sale it produces. That is because most of the two million or so home buyers expected to claim the credit would have bought a house anyway. Only about 350,000 were additional buyers. Expanding the credit to make all home buyers potentially eligible would swell the government’s cost per additional home sale to more than $250,000, said Mr. Gayer, co-director of economic studies at Brookings.”

  14. VennData says:

    Rush Limbaugh blames others for being dropped from St. Louis Rams purchase bid

    Limbaugh said he was victimized in the media by “misreporting, lying, repeating the lies while also saying ‘Limbaugh denies,’ repeating the made-up quotes, the blind hatred.”

    …was an illustration of “Obama’s America on full display,” the commentator said.

    “Victimized?” “Blaming others?” I guess this mean… he’s… wait for it…. “failed.”

    Oh, here’s betting he couldn’t buy and NFL in Bush’s America either. Now maybe in a Jefferson Davis America…

  15. call me ahab says:


    regardless of views- with cash- shouldn’t anybody be able to buy?

    god forbid- someone would be refused at a diner that had ready cash-

    but i guess it’s ok- as long as YOU agree

  16. It happens in the NHL too Ahab. You have to be ‘acceptable’ to the millionaire’s clubs.

    That being said, good luck buying a bank if you’re a Walmart or a Branson. They don’t want that kind of riffraff ruining their cabals either

  17. laBear says:

    Inside the Bunker: CEO John Mack on Saving Morgan Stanley – Knowledge@Wharton

    Entertaining if you have the time to listen to video…

  18. HarryWanger says:

    Here’s to the lack of historical reference by the Failure Caucus. When I graduated from college, the unemployment rate was over 10% and mortgage rates were in the 15% area. Hmmm…somehow we managed to get through a worse situation than today. I found a job right out of college, as did my classmates. There was no internet to whine and piss and moan about how “we would never find a job”. We went out into the world and somehow, in a worse environment, were able to secure good jobs and pay ridiculous mortgages. So skip the “we’re doomed” internet speech for the lazy ass Failure Caucus. The determined grads who believe in this country’s future, as we did, will go out and seek solutions not excuses.

  19. jdmckay says:

    re: your comments in: Wrong!

    Wall Street Bonuses: As 90% of you made clear to me, Wall Street bonuses ARE something to be upset about.

    Yves Smith (Naked Captialism) has a relevant post up this morning: MSM Reporting as Propaganda (No One Minds Our New Financial Masters Edition).

    I would submit to you Yves does good job pointing out why the GS pay issue is important and relevant. I would summarize that, the reason is because the disparity in pay for these guys vs. …

    a) their actual contribution, or value created… as opposed to (what IMO they’re largely doing) just scooping some untethered cash from revenue streams of others who are doing most of the real labor.
    b) vastly dwindling real financial resources in US: Joe Q. Public, institutional investments, Fed gov debt (bailout balance sheet)/dwindling $USD/dwindling US influence on international econ direction (read Honk Kong financials… who’s listening to us there?)

    … AFAIC, exemplary in these GS “earnings” and bonuses is allocation of resources to a select few who create little/no wealth, often in fact re-direct resources in fraudulent fashion, but perhaps most importantly allocate huge political resources to direct public policy towards their own narrow self-interest while, as Yves point out, the large social wellbeing necessary for a healthy society is being/has been eroded at an alarming pace this past decade.