Sometimes, the numbers don’t tell the full story: For the week, the Dow lost "only" 52 points — about 1/2 a percent — while the SPX gave up 5 and the Nazz lost 16. Funny, it seemed a lot worse Thursday and Friday, as several economic releases suggested a much sharper deceleration than consensus.
The Fed stayed on Pause, Oracle reported good numbers, and — ex 20 cent a share Labor expenses — Fed Ex maintained guidance for 2007. Oh, and I heard something or other about a hedge fund blowing up.
• I can sum up the economy, market sentiment, and the late week shift in trading in just 2 words: Whither Goldilocks?;
• There’s too much Amaranth stuff out there, so here is a quick overview: Dealbreaker does a full round up of all the coverage; Jeff Matthews explains how the fund was related to LTCM; I place blame squarely where it belongs: on investors who encourage excessive risk-taking.
• For a while, it seemed Chrysler was in a separate league from Ford
and GM: Lots of surprise hit cars, profitible for 12 straight quarters.
Is this Strike Three for US automakers? Is Chrysler now’s going down the tubes, also?
• And I was this close: Billionaires only for Forbes’ list of US super-rich;
• What is the message of commodity-price volatility? (From Copper to Capital)
• Some good news: Falling Gas Prices Help Low End Consumer;
• Will the G-7 get replaced with the G-2? (US and China)
• This can’t be good: Spy Agencies Say Iraq War Worsens Terror Threat;
INVESTING & TRADING
• Bad Puns aplenty as HP tried to put the pretexting scandal behind it: Dunn Is Finally Done; I heard Hurd is Now Chairman;
• Question: Why did none of the ginormous energy bets made by Amaranth have any regulatory scrutiny?
Answer: The Enron Loophole
• Have a look at the Internal Strength of the Market
• John Dorfman says Nine of 20 Largest Stocks Earn My `Buy’ Rating
• Do you know what is Alpha betting is?
• Are you familiar with the 75 Day VIX Rule?
• John Hussman points out two pet peeves of ours: Weak breadth and poor volume in A House Built on Sand;
• Who is Federated Investors’ Steven Lehman, and why is he so nervous?
• Fleck advises us to Beware markets with no reason to rally;
• The only plausible conclusions that can be drawn from the crackup of
Amaranth, et al, are that 1) they didn’t know the risks they were
taking, or 2) they knew and didn’t care. Either way, Henry Blodget says
its Risky Business;
As interest rates and gasoline prices come down, I would expect to see some mild improvement in real estate sales; Even the new house across the street from me finally sold — after being on the market for a year, it sold for a 18.9% discount from the original price.
• No surprise them that Homebuilders Index Falls to lowest level since 1991
• This is rather Interesting: Contrarians Moving Into U.S. Housing Stocks
• "It is a difficult environment right now, and we expect it to continue to be very difficult on the revenue side for everybody in the industry, and there will be continuing concerns across the industry for a time to come" — WaMu’s COO, speaking at Bank of America 36th Annual Investment Conference in San Francisco;
• A young real estate speculator overextends himself, blogs all about it, and then realizes what a giant mistake it was: I am Facing Foreclosure.com;
Psychology and Sentiment
• What is Wealth? (part II)
• The Cumulative NYSE TICK: A Valuable Measure of Short-Term Sentiment
• NYT Technology (and former Macworld) columnist David Pogue looks at the news headlines from 1995-97 about Apple; Yet more proof that financial media can be bad for your wealth.
Technology and Science
• Philanthropy Smackdown: Its the Google Boys vs. Gates for the World Charity Championship.
• Fascinating discussion for you musically inclined quants: Just How Random Is the iPod’s Shuffle?
• Jon Markman has a good piece stating Why YouTube is ready for prime time;
• Want to know how and where VC money is s[pread out over the web? Then check out The Web VC Chart
MUSIC FILM TV BOOKS Fun!
• An unblinking look at the history of the MPAA film rating committee. It turns out that not only is the panel populated with low IQ sexual deviants, but they use the rating system as an unfair way to prevent independent films from competing against the majors. Then there are the comical changes directors must make to avoid an X rating: The MPAA had Scorsese "desaturates the colors during a shootout scene" in "Taxi Driver" because the MPAA feels that the darkened colors disguise the blood. Scorsese later said the changes ordered by the MPAA made the scene even more shocking.
• Oh, and there’s a blog too: This blog is not yet rated:
• Want to track the most popular videos on line? The viral video chart
• How well do colloborative filters work for music: Actually, I Hate That Song.
• Michael Lewis reviews "The Accidental Investment Banker"
• This year’s MacArthur Fellows 2006 (Genius Grants)
• Dr. Suess Taxidermy (yes, that Dr. Suess)
Thats all this week, where like it or not, the season premiere of Depserate Housewives will somehow find its way onto my TiVo . . .