My afternoon train reading:

• How to know when it’s time to leave the party (MarketWatch) but see Moving Averages: Month-End Update (Advisor Perspectives)
• Paulson Leads Funds to Bermuda Tax Dodge Aiding Billionaires (Bloomberg)
• Confessions of a Barclays Banker Who’s Seen the Light (The Fiscal Times)
• The Modern Stealth Depression (minyanville) versus This Rally Is in Its Infancy (Yahoo Finance)
• Why doesn’t anybody (other than Samsung) copy Apple? (ASYMCO)
• The Rise of the Robots (Project-Syndicate) see also No College Diploma, No Job, Even as a File Clerk (NYT)
• Under The Radar – The World Of A Stealth Aircraft (LurnQ)
• How To Create a Mind: Can a marriage between man and machine solve the world’s problems? (The Globe and Mail) but see The Brain is Not Computable (MIT Review of Books)
• The Agony Of The Fanboy (techcrunch)
• 50 Years Ago: The World in 1963 (The Atlantic)

What are you reading?


Apple accounts for 20% of all 2012 US consumer technology sales revenue

Source: Apple Insider

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.

21 Responses to “10 Tuesday PM Reads”

  1. SkepticalOx says:

    Why Amazon Hired a Car Mechanic to Run Its Cloud Empire (Wired)

    And lol @ the Apple article’s comment section. A comment used the whole “Apple didn’t invent anything new and it’s all marketing” argument (paraphrasing) and gets slammed by replies using data and evidence. Got me to giggle a bit in light of BR’s comments section and a previous blog post with a similar lame comment.

  2. hue says:

    recline & fall of in-cabin civilization tilting your seat back on an airplane is pure evil. but so is installing seats that recline in the first place

  3. Livermore Shimervore says:

    on the Apple article, agree that the stock price is undervalued by many. Particularly in foreign consumer markets. The Apple tide is barely starting.
    Disagree strongly on everyone copying their products. My Non-Samsung smartphone had many things that the Iphone lacked for over a year and half: large screen, 24+ hour battery and LTE speeds and unlike Siri, Google’s product actually works. Also, until the Iphone 5 launched , it was the only 3G smartphone you could still buy at the Verizon store in 2012. And least two of the LTE phones Razr Maxx and Galaxy Note had superior battery life than an iPhone on only 3G.
    The same can be said about my tablet (Samsung 10″). It was thinner and lighter than the Ipad available at the time, had a superior screen and had the novel ability to play flash content…all for $100 less than the Ipad…

    Everyone was copying Apple in the begining of the smartphone/tablet war. But Apple’s limited number of products and long waiting period between product launches means they are always behind the competition in the actual technology department. But they are miles ahead on sales.. no debate there.

  4. RetailRob says:

    Regarding Mark Hulbert’s story on MarketWatch (“How to know when it’s time to leave the party”) – he kind of has a point and he kind of doesn’t. By way of background, I’m just a retail schmuck thinking of using some moving-average-based rules on my (tax-exempt, no-transaction-fee) retirement account after not responding particularly well to the 2008 crash in an asset allocation sense. As I’ve thought about this I’ve done a ton of backtesting. A few differences from Hulbert: I use S&P 500 total return rather than Dow, and I use 9- or 10-mo moving average rather than “200 day”. He doesn’t say if his backtest transacts mid-month; mine only rebalances at month’s end.

    First of all it is true that the performance of just about any moving average strategy was crappy for years starting in the early 90s. The big bull run from about 1993-2000 was just up, up, up; you didn’t want to miss a single month of that and every time you did, you dinged your returns. Notably, the moving average strategy just about caught up by 2003, even given all those years of lagging.

    Secondly, he states “I did not credit this hypothetical portfolio with the interest it would have earned when out of the market… I’m confident that these assumptions did not materially affect my conclusions.” I am not so confident. I have run backtests that just flatline the portfolio when it’s out of the market (i.e., “cash without interest”), and these pretty seriously lag an alternative that provides even a modest return when out of the market, such as going to short-term bonds. I think this is a combination of the fact that even short-term bonds are modestly negatively correlated with stock returns so you get some price appreciation when the equity market goes down, and the fact that, quite frankly, some yield is better than no yield, particularly during the real bear markets where you are out for over a year at a time and it can actually compound.

    Finally, even when the moving average strategy doesn’t outperform in terms of total return, it seriously reduces the volatility, sometimes by as much as half, and mostly eliminates drawdowns of more than 10-15%. For retail investors with unpredictable time horizons, there is real value in this.

  5. OscarWildeDog says:

    I’m reading the Psyblog: PsyBlog – Reconstructing the Past: How Recalling Memories Alters Them. Great way to rewrite history, something the RepubliCANTS are constantly and consistently trying to do.

  6. PeterR says:

    The LurnQ link for stealth aircraft leads nowhere. Truly “Under the Radar!”

  7. RW says:

    Don’t know how much control TBP has over its “Quote of the day” feature but this evening’s quote is bogus: “The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money.” -Alexis de Tocqueville

    de Tocqueville never said it and, perhaps worse yet, it is something he not only never would have said but almost certainly would have rejected as inconsistent with American values as he understood them; i.e., it disparages a fundamental premise of democracy, that there is a common purpose and set of priorities arising from the vote of the people for which the people also vote to allocate funds from the commonwealth.

    Perhaps more than anything else this is a principle that our post-modern ‘aristocrats’, the plutocratic oligarchs, have attempted to besmirch or, failing that, suborn to their own purposes; e.g., the “money is free speech” BS that Mitch McConnell was spinning awhile back.

    It may seem a small thing but small things may matter more than we suspected; e.g., look what a rat hole bumper sticker doggerel like “Government is the problem, not the solution” dug for us.

  8. Francisco Bandres de Abarca says:

    Since tomorrow (February 20) marks the 51st anniversary of John Glenn’ Mercury Friendship 7 flight, this seems to be an appropriate citation:

    It’s a nifty 2 1/2 minute video covering the quandary which NASA engineers (and John Glenn) confronted and overcame when flight systems indicated that the capsule’s landing bag had deployed in orbit. Of course, the flight was an eventual (though shorter than planned) success, as the rocket pack proved to be merely additional ablative material.

    What media frenzy awaits when Congress returns from the President’s Day vacation . . . week?

  9. PeterR says:

    Fascinating at the end of the article that stealth in the future might” bend light” using 3D imaging technology to make an object “invisible” to a viewer.

  10. VennData says:

    Park Sheds Confederate Name, Drawing Ire –

    “If we don’t preserve our historic places today, who’s going to have them there for our posterity?” he said.

    Press 1 for English, 2 for GOP.

    And these are the guys who want English to be our sole language? ROFL.

  11. S Brennan says:

    I don’t what to make of this article:

    The Modern Stealth Depression (minyanville)

    I am not saying it is not so, but it goes goes against not only what I was taught, but also against a lot of actual news films of the times*. The weird part for me is, if true, people/media reacted the same as they do now to those being smashed against the rocks of economic ruin.

    *Were early news reels like the early blogs, not constrained by corporate interests?

  12. S Brennan says:

    error….I don’t [know] what to make of this article:

  13. ilsm says:


    At least TBP did not pull the de Tocqueville quote from von Hayek. That is the only thing most tea baggers know of the 1831French visitor.


    Stealth, immensely expensive does not make super weapons of failed tactics, it is a marginal improvement to the survivability of bombers, whose usefulness was not proven in WW II and proved a complete waste in Vietnam.

    Pictures. The F-1117 is retired and the 20 B-2′s are the low rate production as they failed their tests and the hundreds more planned were not built.

    The F-35 should be stopped at the current low rate “lot”.

  14. ilsm says:


    At least TBP did not pull the de Tocqueville quote from von Hayek. That is the only thing most tea baggers know of the 1831French visitor.


    Stealth, immensely expensive does not make super weapons of failed tactics, it is a marginal improvement to the survivability of bombers, whose usefulness was not proven in WW II and proved a complete waste in Vietnam.

    Pictures. The F-1117 is retired and the 20 B-2′s are the low rate production as they failed their tests and the hundreds more planned were not built.

    The F-35 should be stopped at the current low rate “lot”.

  15. rd says:

    An interesting little data point for any of you who invest in specific tech companies.

    I have a 4.5 year old computer provided by my company that is running XP. I am getting a new laptop over the next couple of weeks that will be running Windows 7. Apparently, the company is replacing all computers that are still running XP over the next few months since Microsoft is going to cease supporting it next spring. That is about a third of our computers. Windows 7 puts too much demand on the computer to run it on the older models that are loaded with XP, so the computeres have to be replaced.

    Don’t be surprised if you see a spike in sales at the mainstay PC companies over the next 6 to 12 months but it will be a one time spike since our company will probably go back to its 5 year refresh cycle after that.

  16. sellstop says:

    Nothing has changed from the ’30s with respect to the desire of most of society to avoid the scary aspects of economic contraction and asset price deflation. Most people don’t look too closely at their P/L statements. After all what can they do? They hunker down, watch a movie. Have you noticed the increase in fantasy movies and movie styles. Cars and people flying through the air. And people outrunning explosions! Those have been huge over the last few years. And lots of graphics…. Animals talking, and infants talking.
    With that in mind it becomes obvious that most of society is only now waking up to the fact that the stock market has been going up for a long time. And maybe there really is HOPE for their retirement account.” Maybe we should change to more stocks, Honey.”

    By the way, I just finished reading Dr. Elder’s “Come Into My Trading Room”. I should have found it years ago. (He sent me a signed copy. Score!) Get it.


  17. catman says:

    Retail Bob – There has been a ten period monthly MA touted here a number of times as a way to keep on the right side of the …….. market. Live long and prosper.

  18. hue says:

    I linked to The Modern Stealth Depression, only speaking about the economy: the worst recession since the Depression didn’t seem so bad, if it’s over.

    Kevin DePew, who wrote that article, stopped being bearish in 2009, about the same time as BR. Kevin uses DeMark indicators for those who don’t lean technical

  19. sherman says:

    Holy Shit Barry…Look at what someone on Reddit figured out about our slimy banker buddies.

    This is some of the most brilliant shit I have ever seen.

  20. [...] evenings reads led with a link to Mark Hulbert’s How to know when it’s time to leave the party. Hulbert [...]