Happy hump day:

• Small-Cap Breakdown? (The Capital Spectator) see also Russell Closes Below 200-DMA (Bespoke)
• Buybacks: Another Name for Quality (Morningstar)
• Why Emotions are Key to Trading Performance (TraderFeed) see also Ten Surefire Trading Rules To Make You Rich (Reformed Broker)
• Book Review: Clash of the Financial Pundits (Aleph Blog)

Continues here

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.

15 Responses to “10 Wednesday AM Reads”

  1. hue says:

    Why oil and gasoline prices could plunge (Yahoo!)

    Surprise! ‘Pro-business’ policies hurt state economic growth (LATimes)

    A BuzzFeed Parody Made Real: Was Monica Lewinsky Really That Bad For Bill Clinton? (FiveThirtyEight)

  2. rd says:

    A few comments about the Mother Jones 7 Scary Facts about Climate Change piece (BTW – I am a believer in global warming and man’s influence on it – I just don’t believe the magnitude and consequences will be as dire as the doomsayers).

    1. North America has undergone massive bouts of climate change in about 100,000 to 200,000 year cycles over the past million or so years. These past climate change events are on a scale unimaginable to 99% of the population and would have prevented many of the major cities and farming areas in North America if those conditions existed over the past thousand years. This publication has a very good discussion of what the Midwest looked like about 20,000 years ago which is totally unlike today – it has an interesting little discussion about current climate change at the end: http://www.kgs.ku.edu/Publications/PIC/pic28.html

    2. A high percentage of North America’s natural ecosystems rely on wildfires for healthy renewal. We have prevented those wildfires from occurring over the past century and the resultant build up of fuel and non-native species is causing more destructive fires than used to occur. Climate change has almost nothing to do with this except that it causes droughts that mean that we can’t control fires the way we could 50 years ago. Much of the cost of the wildfires is because people have moved into fireprone areas and so there is now property to get burned down, unlike before.

    3. Pollution, dredging, and disruption of natural river flows and sediment loads mean that many of then ation’s coastal wetlands, reefs and shellfish beds that used to be major flood protectors have been destroyed or significantly impaired. Climate change has had very little to do with this destruction and coastal damage. Instead, our own local activities have meant that we have impaired our coastal immune system that previously could repair itself and adjust to sea level change. 8 inches of sea level rise is nothing compared to the several hundred feet of sea level rise that occurred from 20,000 to 10,000 years ago. We are locking in hard infrastructure on the edge of a fluctuating ocean system, expecting something that has historically had massive changes in elevation to have no change. This is like expecting a stock mutual fund to behave like a money market fund and being surprised when it doesn’t.

    In summary, we need to get over the hyperbole and separate out real climate change effects from things that we are doing that would be destructive or stupid even in the absence of climate change.

    • Biffah Bacon says:

      The rub is the conservative tendencies of scientists and the social conduct of science as a cultural practice and the complexity of the real world contrasted to the simplified models which scientists use to make generalizable (nomothetic or law seeking) or testable hypotheses from.
      In the 1890s when Arrhenius twigged on the fact that CO2 had greenhouse effects and that humanity had launched on an epic uncontrolled experiment, his model was based on the fact that CO2 retains heat. Modern models contain a larger number of variables and a much longer baseline of instrumental and proxy records to test against the models, but even these may be derailed by an “unknown unknown” like methane hydrates in the continental shelf or the amounts of methane from thawing permafrost as the Arctic warms.
      Science as a cultural practice suffers from a variety of ills that are of little earth shaking consequence when the stakes are low, but are more serious when they could be used as evidence to seek policy changes that could mean life or death for billions. Mach joked that science advanced on funeral at a time, as outdated ideas centered on personalities faded to be replaced by insurgent ideas.
      Gradualism has been a point of honor for many, demonstrating the conservative nature of scientific pursuits, sometimes tinged with incrementalism or thresholds but usually cushioned with a notion of a return to a stable equilibrium. In real life this view isn’t guaranteed, and catastrophes occur all the time at different scales.
      In this case we have a set of opportunities (problems) that could be mitigated (not solved) by policy choices in the face of a planetary scale climate event. The effects of our uncontrolled experiment are already being observed, measured and analyzed, but the cognitive capacity of the average human seemingly is incapable of understanding that the status quo is unsustainable and the risks of inaction are high.
      People don’t have to live in drafty houses and apartments with outdated inefficient appliances. Public mass transit doesn’t have to be gross and inconvenient to use. Cars and trucks don’t have to be 60s throwbacks. We don’t have to use coal for power and we don’t have to burn oil. These are choices people have made by calculations that don’t include relevant variables such as externalized costs and ecological services. We may have some time yet to avoid the worst of it, but once the big rock starts rolling it is unstoppable; it has already started to roll.
      http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/comment.html?entrynum=2675

  3. betheball says:

    Josh Brown is only one of two “Fast Money” guys I would halfway take seriously, the other being Dan. With that said he makes some crazy points in his post. You should always have your eyes on the market, yes, but you should never ever overtrade though. Look at the market the past 3 sessions. Who wants to be in this thing? Always trading in this is a sure way to be zeroed out. We all know the best traders are right 50% of the time so pick our entry points carefully, especially in this chop your head off kind of market. I also disagree with going in heavy on hot streaks. Again, this market is nothing like last year. Even holding a position overnight in this market could be a catastrophic trade, especially if you are in any of the growth names getting taken to the woodshed. Finally, I would never pay anyone for trading advice. The people making the most money aren’t sharing their wisdom, they are counting their money and keeping their mouths shut. Teachers, teach for a reason.

  4. > Americans Are Outliers in Views on Climate Change

    I don’t know how the New York Times omits China, which comes in just below us, from that graphic. The data is based on an extensive – and interesting – PEW survey:

    http://goo.gl/uwvME1

    which didn’t include India, because of survey administrative concerns.

  5. rd says:

    Apparently, the American financial services industry does not believe it is capable of providing financial advice that is in the best interest of the client and therefore it should be able to continue business as usual because clients will be better off with advice that is not in their best interest:

    http://blogs.marketwatch.com/encore/2014/05/07/fiduciary-rules-would-help-not-hurt-investors/

  6. rd says:

    An inteersting discussion of the “free market” in pharmaceutical drug pricing in the US and its encounter with health insurers and the Affordable Care Act.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-05-07/cancer-doctors-join-insurers-in-revolt-against-drug-costs.html

    However, what was missing in the discussion is the pricing in other countries, like Canada for these drugs.

  7. willid3 says:

    and i dont really get the great cutting of public investment.
    cause in the great state of Texas, we have that same problem with roads. we are turning them into gravel too. course some of the counties stepped in to keep them paved. most of the destruction of roads was because of our great fracking experiment. they use really heavy trucks. a lot. of course companies originally said they would repair the roads (turns out they bailed on that promise). course we also have a major drought going on state wide (been going for a while now) with some cities actually running out of water. or coming really close. but we are deep into discussion as to what to do. some want to build reservoirs some want conservation. some dont really believe there is a problem either. course we aren’t as bad as California, but give us time, and we will be. can’t let them beat us any thing you know

  8. willid3 says:

    you mean shippers of oil must warn the states where they are going through? course in some states they might not care. or pass that on to those who live there.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/05/07/usa-energy-railways-idUSL2N0NT1W620140507?feedType=RSS&feedName=rbssEnergyNews

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