Posts Tagged Mitt romney

11/28/16…Kellyanne? You’re FIRED!!!

Not quite, but…

She made two cardinal sins on Sunday talk shows: first, she thought she knew

The Donald’s mind without checking in the last half hour (joke), but seriously, she claimed she had talked with him about the President-elect and he had no problems with her comments on him…hmmmm. Secondly, purportedly at least, The Donald is trying to ‘make nice’ because he knows he needs all the help he can get.

It didn’t take long for word to get out that Trump was pissed! Damn, if she leaves, is there anyone else he can grope or find attractive enough to? (“Donald, stop that…oh, okay…). That was not fair besides she is a mother of four and 49 years old…way to old for him. Note to Melania: at 46, you are on borrowed time, wheras he told Howard Stern, Ivanka was a “nice piece of ass” and at her optimum age of 35…at 45 they start walking. Good advice, no? Oops, Melania, remember when you were pregnant and he called you a “monster” and a “blimp”. Don’t worry, those are just his ‘pet’ names, right??? Right???

Word in D.C. is he is having problems filling 2nd and 3rd tier jobs…you know, the ones who do the heavy lifting, not just titular heads. Why on worth would you want to be in THAT cabinet? To save him from himself? That familiar “you’re fired!” could ring out loud and often but hey, when you’ve been elected dictator, who cares.

But this isn’t Trump Enterprises where there was no one to say that Trump Wine, and the infamous Trump U. were bad ideas…hence a misogynist, narcissist, with delusions of grandeur. But there is Congress and that honeymoon, even with his own party in control, could be very short, i.e. over before he even is sworn in?

Listen to Ted Cruz: during the battle he called him a ‘pathological liar’, no argument there because he never  backs down from a statement no matter how strong the proof. Another mark of a narcissist, because they never want to lose and his sister, the former appellate judge for New Jersey (appointed a federal judge by Reagan and to the appellate court by the evil Obama). Now he says it was ‘just in the heat of battle’. Hey, Ted, you might get that Supreme Court seat yet! Ah, but once there, in decisions he can say what he really thinks, IF he follows the Constitution, not the party.

Okay, I had some fun…factual fun, though. Now for my real thoughts (note that I voted for Clinton as the lesser of two evils since both parties let their constituents down): he has no moral compass, no compassion, cannot tell a lie…oops, truth, is crude, disgusting, and a pompous ass! He will destroy relations with our allies, and has already started by telling the Brits who their Ambassador to the U.S. should be…and he still has ‘elect’ after his title.

Ah, those poor people in manufacturing jobs and especially coal…you see, it is Obama’s regulations that are killing….killing I (he) say! Well, guess what, Donald? It’s called technology and alternative fuels (not alt, like alt-right), natural gas is an easy substitute for coal in power generation, and has fewer emissions. Oops, Donald, forgot that climate change is a hoax perpetuated by the Chinese. Well, hate to tell you this but solar and wind power are growing by leaps and bounds and if Congress would ever clamp down on auto industry think where we would be?

Oh, and you have truly pissed off the alt-right (neo-nazi’s, KKK, etc.) by not prosecuting Hillary, even though you have no power to try or not to try. If you think those election night and the next few days, protests were bad, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet…and that, Mr. Trump will be your bad!

But Mr. Trump, and I hope that President-elect is as far as you go (see last column on Dec. 19th and the electoral college, aka the 12th Amendment!). You have no credentials to be president: zero, zip, zilch, yet you continue to tell the American people how it’s gonna be.

You have cast doubt on our elections, the hallmark of any democracy, by making insane comments before the election about voter fraud, and saying you will keep us in suspense whether you will challenge the election…but not if you win.

Well, guess what Donald? You are winning, and as Judge Judy tells people who are winning: shut up! You can only hurt yourself. Yet because Clinton shows a 2 million vote lead in the ‘meaningless’ popular vote and is joining Jill Stein in a possible recount of three states, you just can’t help yourself. Now you are screaming…literally, the millions of voters were illegal. That is tantamount to treason because you are once again challenging the very backbone of America and democracy that we have preached to other nations. Also, you, Rudy Giuliani, and Kellyanne should shut up about people who backed Hillary being “cry babies”, telling Clinton and Obama to stop the protests, yet you claimed to be unaware of any alt-right hate crimes that have escalated after the election and when she pressed YOU to do something, you said, in a monotone that lacked conviction: “stop it now.” Yes, daddy!

Well, I guess I’ve got it off my chest now but i am speaking as an American, not a Republican, Democrat, etc. but as someone who thanks to you has lost all faith in our political parties…perhaps that is your rationale for becoming Dictator-in-Chef.

A disgusted TB.

 

 

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12/15/14…they have so many ways to get you!

Quote of the Day from the Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “Golf is a lot like business. You drive hard to get in the green, and then wind up in the hole.” – Anon
Bloomberg Quote of the Day: “Art is never finished, only abandoned.” – Claude Monet

Friday’s Market Summary:

A bloodbath…and you were warned. Now here’s another warning: if you think the market is going to go down further, bear in mind that Friday is options expiration – the final quadruple witching of the year! Anything can happen. Most likely case is a ‘rebound’ ahead of it to ‘square’ positions, then its anyone’s guess. We have been disappointed several times in selloff’s that don’t even reach 20%, let the required 25% for a correction. Solution: hands in pockets! Off keyboard!
Worst performer was the Russell 2000 small cap down 2%! This was followed by the Dow 39 -1.8%, then the S&P 500 -1.6%; both Nasdaq’s were off about 1.2%, while Dow Transports and Utilities (?) both declined 1%. Bonds rallied large with the 30-year closing at a new 12-month low of 2.74%, while the 10-year and long TIP closing right on their respective lows ((2.09%/0.83%)!!! Gold was boring, closing only slightly lower, but Crude tanked to another new 5+ year low, closing just above it at $57.52!!! Ah, but cheap gas will keep the economy going! Wanna bet?
Back to stocks: A/D’s and Breadth were very negative; new 52 week lows sunk (stunk?) to and extremely weak 111 from 201, while new lows nearly doubled to a huge 603!!! THAT’S Bearish! Worse, Volatility was sharply higher…on a down day! This plus high volume plus new highs/lows plus A/D’s-Breadth…what does it spell? Trouble ahead! It was the 2nd worst week of the year for stocks (see details below…downright scary!). Will you have a good or a bad year? The next week could decide!

Total NYSE Volume rose to 4.16B shares vs 3.93B vs 4.05B vs 3.95B vs 3.72B. Average volume since 9/30 remains about 3.6B shares or about 600M more than the 12-month average. Shares traded on the NYSE floor (aka REAL) also sharply higher at 941M shares – highest since 11/21 (options expiry!) vs 824M shares vs 913M (1st 900M day since October!) vs 834M vs 770M, For comparison purposes, for the prior 12 months it is a historically weak 722M shares, but since 10/1: 819B shares – including a 1.22B (and two more 1B+ share sessions) – highest since 9/19,. The lowest was 11/1’s 619M share session. April 30 – September 30 we had just SEVEN 800M shares…since 10/1: now at 22 – just one in Nov, and now SEVEN 900M+ days: that is now FOUR 800M days and TWO 900M day for Dec.

A/D’s were very negative: NYSE: -3.8x!!! vs +1.4x vs -4.6x!!! vs +1.5x vs -2.3x; Nasdaq -2.4x vs +1.5x vs -4.6x!!! vs +2.1x vs -2.9x. Breadth was worse: NYSE -4.7x!!! vs +1.2x vs -15.5x!!! (Unbelievable!) vs +1.4x vs -3.8x!!! Nasdaq -2.6x vs +2.2x vs -2.5x vs +2.1x vs -3.3x. New 52 Week Highs nearly halved to an extremely weak 111!!! vs 201 vs 215 vs 207 vs 386! – their range for the year is 39-612!!! New Lows tried to double to 603!!! vs 364 vs 460 vs 467! vs 416. The 2014 range is 24-1043!!! S&P VIX added a full point to its already bearish close ending up at 21.08 with a high of 21.86 – highest since 10/17! During the ‘rally’ it only made it to 15.94 – this despite the early rally! We are now nearing those bearish extremes that had a high of 31.06 (highest since 11/28/11!!!), and now a big possibility with options expiry this Friday! The average of the past 12 months is 14.03, with a low of 10.28!…high close of 26.25 on 10/15/14!

U.S. bond market closed strong at or through the old 12-month lows! Note on 12/2, the 30 yr bottomed at 3.01%. Updating the recent 12 month low yields (10’s 2.09%; 30’s 2.74%! and long TIP 0.83%), 10’s closed at 2.09%! +11/16; 30’s 2.74%!!! NEW LOW +1-5/16, and the long TIP 0.83%!!! +9/16. Overnight back to weak!?! 10’s 2.11% -1/4; 30’s 2.76% -1/2; long TIP 0.84% -1/2…hmmm.
Libor update: 0.243% 3 mos.; 0.341% 6 mos. Both higher but still near their recent record lows! The Fed Funds rate has averaged 0.09% and is currently 0.09-0.11% – back from 0.13%, a 9-month high. T-Bills: 0.01%! one-month; 0.02% 3 mos; 0.19%!!! – why is it rising?
Foreign bond yields slightly, ex-PIIGS, which have been hurting – even Greece, which is back from 8.9%! (Benchmark is 10yr): Germany 0.63%! +1; UK 1.82%! +3; France 0.90%! +1; Italy 1.98%??? -8?; Spain 1.78% -9!!!; Portugal 2.90% -4; Greece 8.58%! vs 8.88%!!! vs 8.70%! vs 8.24%! vs 7.71% vs 7.03%, -25!!! Not for the faint of heart! 10/16’s close was 8.54%! – cycle low: 5.42%; Crisis high: 12.57%. Japan: 0.37%!!! -2.

Gold closed slightly weaker but still holding safely above $1200 closing at $1222.00 -$3.10 – in an ‘inside’ session. Last week’s intraday high was $1238.00 – highest since 10/22/ This is its SIXTH straight $1200+ close since 12/5the selloff began. Well above the 40/50 day again for just the 6th time since 10/21! 11/7’s low was $1130.40, a new 12-month low!). This was only the 2nd time in 31 sessions without a print below $1200. Last close above $1300 was on 8/15. 7/17’s session high was $1346.60, highest since March 19th!!! Support is at $1200 (psych) and the 40 day ($1199!), the 50 day $1204, RES at $1256, the 10/21 high, then the 200 day $1269 – all have bottomed! The 12-month high is $1392.60 on 3/17, highest high since 9/4/13. 11/7’s low was $1130.40! Overnight it is weaker at $1212.50 -$10.00! – with a session low of $1206.50. There have now been 14 highs above $1200 since 10/31. Silver starting to crack – breaking $17 and now at $16.91 -.14, following its $17.27 high! This after a $14.12 recent low, not seen in more than five years!

Crude really took it Friday, first diving to $57.34, lowest since 5/18/09!, then closed barely above $57.52 -$2.43!!! – that is it’s 7th straight ‘lower low’ and close! Consider: 10/25’s high was $84.83. There have now been 47!!! handles since peaking at $107.73 on June 13th, highest since 9/19/13. The record high of $147.27 was on 9/30/08, the low since on 5/15/09 is $56.07: $89.85 is the average! Recent rally high and close are $110.70 and $110.53 respectively. RES at the 40 day ($74.49!), then the 50 day ($76.79!), and lastly the 200 day (94.22!), all STILL increasing their rate of decline! We are now headed for $50!!! The recent range is now $59.32-$112.24 since 3/1/12. Overnight, it had another hughe new low of $56.25 (now its 48th handle), but bounced and is now $58.02 +.21. Ouch! Note that following the financial crisis it traded down to $32.40 on 12/31/08 from a high of $147.27 just three months earlier (-78%!!!).

Overnight Global Markets:

European equities mixed and little changed and remain EXTREMELY weak – now four days! Asia slammed (led by Japan), Korea and India little changed: UK -0.3% vs -1.5%! vs -0.8% vs +0.1% vs -1.5%!!! vs -0.9%; France +0.1% vs -1.5%! vs -0.4% vs +0.1% vs -1.8%!!! vs -0.9% vs +1.3% vs -0.9%; Germany +0.1% vs -1.4%! vs +0.1% vs +0.6% vs -1.6%!!! vs -0.5% vs +1.3%; Japan -1.6%!!! vs +0.7% vs -0.9% vs -2.3%!!! vs -0.7%; Hang Seng -1%! vs -0.3% vs -0.9% vs +0.1% vs -2.3%!!! Korea -0.1% vs +0.3% vs -1.5%!!! vs -1.3%! vs -0.4%; India -0.1% vs -0.9% vs -0.8% vs +0.1% vs -1.2%! vs -1.2%! U.S. equity futures higher – another ‘dead cat bounce’? DOW +77 (40); SPX +11.30 (20); NDQ +26.25 (31). Note these merely offset most of the declines at this time last Friday!

Some random thoughts:

…the U.S. used to be an ‘egalitarian’ country…with the Democratic Party exhibiting that the most. Now both parties…or at least the leaders of the Dems…have abandoned that in favor of the wealthy – especially Wall Street. TB can understand one not calling themselves a Democrat (he refuses to do so), but how can anyone who ‘works’ for a living call themselves Republicans? The joke, folks, is on you! If you needed proof…since Bush 43 took office…look at how the party has intervened to prevent jobs growth and forced us to let our infrastructure rot. TB used to watch the GOP National Convention just to see all those smiling ‘average Joe’s’ sucking up the party line while they were in fact, being mocked. That Romney clip that he didn’t know was being filmed told the whole two-faced story. A travesty!

Equal time you say: Ok, yesterday on Bill Moyers was an interview with John H. MacArthur, publisher of Harper’s magazine. He homed in on the Clinton’s (both Bill and Hillary separately), and Obama, who can now only be called ‘two-faced’. The ‘great black hope’ (for both blacks and whites), let us down. His promise to change the way government does business was hypocritical. First, he had no plan (Lawrence Lessig), secondly he, the Daley’s, and Rahm Emanuel, were his closest advisors. Recall that William Daley, left Citigroup to become Chief of Staff (receiving a $10 million kiss goodbye, which was said to be necessary to get people to leave the private sector). Then in a musical chairs move (he was removed and replaced by Jack Lew, and ultimately Rahm Emanuel who ‘quit’ to run for mayor of Chicago…sweet!). Emanuel won, and replaced Richard M. Daley (the other son of legendary Chicago mayor Richard J. Daley)…isn’t nepotism great?

Now that you have the players, recall that Bill Daley, was Clinton’s Secretary of Commerce…you do remember NAFTA don’t you? That was a bill of goods crammed down the throats of the American people (sorry, TB didn’t realize the repercussions either), that shifted jobs to Mexico. Oh, and the outsourcing continued…India…then China…and guess what is next because they are ‘slightly’ cheaper? Viet Nam and Cambodia! Bill Clinton, friend of the people, not! Oh, and let’s not forget Hillary who preached for equal pay for women and increasing the minimum wage, THEN voted against them as a Senator! The point is they all speak out of both sides of their mouths…

Lee Iacocca wrote a book a decade or more ago, Where are the Leaders? It was short because he couldn’t come up with any! Flummoxed! We are still asking that question today, and may be into and after the next election.

Neither party gives a damn about the working people, only those who pump millions into their coffers (which thanks to the GOP just became easier). Jamie Dimon must be laughing his ass off over the budget ‘deal’ that was just passed…bipartisan by the way. Let’s get this straight: Obama, over the objections of key democrats, urged them to pass the bill. This despite allowing the wealthy to contribute even more to political campaigns and worse, castrating Dodd-Frank! How could a Democrat do this? Simple if you are in bed with the Daley’s. Now do you understand why the last three Defense secretaries, all said that they were overridden by Obama’s insiders?

Now for a positive: TB has followed closely the rising star, Elizabeth Warren, who first designed a consumer financial protection agency, was nominated to head it and had to withdraw after Jamie Dimon, blackballed her. But this woman has guts. She ran for and surprisingly became a U.S. Senator where she has become a thorn in the side of both parties. Is she our last hope? TB thinks so! She is articulate, assertive but not vindictive, and is a populist…something the Democratic Party has forgotten. At this point at least, TB believes she should be the first woman president. If we continue the status quo…it won’t matter who is elected as we morph from ‘egalitarian’ (already done), to an oligarchy, over the dead bodies of our nations founders!

Listen to this segment from Bill Moyers and see if you agree: democrats-bow-wall-street

Wow! Chuck Todd is no wimp! He took on Dick Cheney yesterday and made him look like a zealot…correction, Cheney did that to himself. He even contradicted Bush 43’s statement in his book that he wasn’t aware of the details of the prisoner detainment…I believe that. Meanwhile, Cheney used the feeble excuse that two presidential legal advisors said what they did was not torture. I agree that had we had another attack after 9/11 there would have been hell to pay, but we turned ourselves into the kind of ‘animal’s some Japanese became in WWII. By the way, if you doubt this, see Unbroken, premiers on Christmas Day…don’t recommend you see it then!

Lastly, somehow, David Koch (the guy who gives libertarians a bad name), allowed himself to be interviewed on the Barbara Walters The Ten Most Interesting People of 2014, last night.

“I’m basically a libertarian, and I’m a conservative on economic matters, and I’m a social liberal,” Koch told ABC News’ Barbara Walters during an interview for her special “  Now he has not only denigrated libertarians, but ‘social liberals’.

TB write this as a former Republican, now a man without a party. Have a great week!

TB

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12/11/14…it’s good to own a hedge fund! and a 401(k)

Quote of the Day from the Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “My sex life is very bad. If it weren’t for pickpockets, I’d have no sex life at all.” – Henny Youngman
Bloomberg Quote of the Day: “Respect for the truth is an acquired taste.” – Mark Van Doren
Bloomberg Top Stories:
*Jobless Claims Drop as U.S. Corporations Hire at Strongest Pace Since 1999 – ah, but what are the salaries???
*Retail Sales in U.S. Climb by Most in Eight Months Amid Cheaper Fuel Price – yawn
*S&P 500 Futures Rise with Dollar on Retail Sales Growth While WTI Declines – huh?
*ECB Stimulus Case Boosted as Long-Term Loan Offering Draw Muted Response
*Carney Seeks Fed-Like Timing, Instant Minute4s in First Revamp in 17 Years
*Barclays, Deutsche Bank Forex Algorithms Said Probed by New York Regulator – !!!
*Fed Bubble Risks Paly Out in $550 Billion of Energy Debt – watch this!
*Banks Face Tougher Rules for Asset-Backed Debt as Basel Rejects Warnings
*Russian Central Bank’s One-Point Rate Increase Fails to Halt Ruble’s Slide
*Wal-Mart China Stores Inflated Profit Via Accounting, Internal Study Shows – oh oh!
*GE Is Poised to Increase Dividend in Climb Back From Cut in 2009 Recession – want to bet they do it by issuing debt so they can keep their cash offshore? Huh, sukkahs?
*Jeb Bush’s Offshore Private Equity Fund Raises Specter of Mitt Romney Woes – yep!
*Manhattan Prosecutor Bharara Fenced In By Ruling Undercutting Insider Wins – sick!
*Netanyahu Strengthened After Likud Vote Seen as referendum on Leadership – thought Netanyahu was a merger of Netflix and Yahoo! ???
*Putin’s Friends Reap Billions in State Deals as Russia’s Economy Teeters – so does he!
*Can You Spare 12 Cents a Gallon for Better U.S. Highways? – by Barry Ritholtz
Wednesday’s Market Summary:

You want to know how bad it was? Not only was every index down from 1.3% (Dow Utilities!!!) to -2.2% (Russell 2000), volume was a strong 4.05B shares, highest in 8 sessions! Oh but it gets worse…much worse: A/D’s and Breadth were very weak with NYSE Breadth an incredible -15.5:1! The final nail was the S&P VIX which ranged from 15.40-18.92 (highest since 10/20), and closed at 18.53 +3.64!!! That’s a 24.5% increase! Talk about bearish! New 52 week highs were steady at 215, while new lows dipped slightly to a still very high 430! Bonds continued to rally while Gold held most of Tuesday’s gain, but Crude was slammed once again to a new 5+ year low. Still bullish are you? Remember they didn’t even like Utilities yesterday!

Total NYSE Volume was 4.05B shares vs 3.95B vs 3.72B vs 3.36B vs 3.37B vs 3.58B vs 3.64B vs 4.14B. Average volume since 9/30 remains about 3.6B shares or about 600M more than the 12-month average. Shares traded on the NYSE floor (aka REAL) rose again to a strong 913M shares (1st 900M day since October!) vs 834M vs 770M vs 755M vs 798M vs 776M vs 809M vs 877M. For comparison purposes, for the prior 12 months it is a historically weak 720M shares…but since 10/1: 814B shares – including that HUGE 1.22B share day – highest since 9/19, followed by two more 1B plus days leading to options expiry!. The lowest was 11/1’s 619M share session. April 30 – September 30 we had just SEVEN 800M shares…since 10/1: now at 20 – just one in Nov, and now SIX 900M+ days. Now three 800M days and one 900M day for Dec.

A/D’s were very negative! NYSE: -4.6x!!! vs +1.5x vs -2.3x vs +1.1x vs -1.7x; Nasdaq -4.6x!!! vs +2.1x vs -2.9x vs +1.9x vs +1.5x. Breadth was worse on the Big Board: NYSE -15.5x!!! (Unbelievable!) vs +1.4x vs -3.8x!!! vs 1:1 vs -2.4x vs +2.4x;; Nasdaq -2.5x vs +2.1x vs -3.3x vs +1.6x vs -1.5x. New 52 Week Highs steady at a weak 215 vs 207 vs 386 vs 363 vs 302 – their range for the year is 39-612!!! New Lows remain VERY strong at 460 vs 467! vs 416 vs 283 vs 248. The 2014 range is 24-1043!!! S&P VIX rocketed to 18.92, highest since 10/10, and extremely bearish and closed just below at 18.53 +3.64, with a ‘low’ of 15.40!!! Now THAT’S bearish! We ‘could’ again see those bearish extremes that had a high of 31.06 (highest since 11/28/11!!!). The average of the past 12 months is 13.98, with a low of 10.28!…high close of 26.25 on 10/15/14!

U.S. bond market closed STRONG for a THIRD day! Note the 30 yr bottomed at 3.01%. The recent 12 month low yields (10’s 2.09%; 30’s 2.87%; and long TIP 0.83%), 10’s closed at 2.16%! +7/16; 30’s 2.83%! NEW LOW +13/16, and the long TIP 0.87%!!! +1/2. Overnight mostly better: 10’s 2.16% +1/16; 30’s 2.81% ANOTHER LOW +3/8; long TIP 0.85% +3/8.
Libor update: 0.239% 3 mos.; 0.338% 6 mos. Both still near their recent record lows! The Fed Funds rate has averaged 0.09% and is currently 0.11-0.13% – a 9-month high. T-Bills: 0.04% one-month; 0.03% 3 mos; 0.20% – why is it rising?
Foreign bond yields mixed; Greece sharply higher again!!! (Benchmark is 10yr): Germany 0.67% -1; UK 1.87%! -3; France 0.95%! -1; Italy 2.07% +1; Spain 1.88% +2; Portugal 2.94% +1; Greece 8.70%!!! vs 8.24% vs 7.71% vs 7.03% +41!!! Not for the faint of heart! 10/16’s close was 8.54%! – cycle low: 5.42%; Crisis high: 12.57%. Japan: 0.40 +1.

Gold put in a ‘temporizing bid’ a day after a strong rally and close that had a session high of $1238.00 – highest since 10/22 and the first REAL $1200+ close since the selloff began. It closed at $1228.90 -$2.60. Well above the 40/50 day again for just the 5th time since 10/21! 11/7’s low was $1130.40, a new 12-month low!). This was the first time in 30 sessions without a print below $1200. Last close above $1300 was on 8/15. 7/17’s session high was $1346.60, highest since March 19th!!! Support is at $1200 (psych) and the 40 day, the 50 day $1203, RES at the 200 day $1270 – all have bottomed! The 12-month high is $1392.60 on 3/17, highest high since 9/4/13. 11/7’s low was $1130.40! Overnight it is slightly weaker again at $1223.40 -$6.00 – holding nicely! There have now been 12 highs above $1200 since 10/31. Silver trading near yesterdays $17.27 high! This following a $14.12 recent low, not seen in more than five years!

Crude dove once again to yet a new low 5+ year low (6/10), of $60.43 –it’s 5th straight ‘lower low’ before closing at $61.74 -$2.08! Consider: 10/25’s high was $84.83. There have now been 45!!! handles since peaking at $107.73 on June 13th, highest since 9/19/13. The record high of $147.27 was on 9/30/08, the low since on 5/15/09 is $56.07: $89.85 is the average! Recent rally high and close are $110.70 and $110.53 respectively. RES at the 40 day ($75.68!), then the 50 day ($78.09!), and lastly the 200 day (94.6!), all STILL increasing their rate of decline! A failure here could take us to $50!!! The recent range is now $60.43-$112.24 since 3/1/12. Overnight it is weaker with another slight new low of $60.30! It is now $60.68 -.24!!! Note that following the financial crisis it traded down to $32.40 on 12/31/08 from a high of $147.27 just three months earlier (-78%!!!).

Overnight Global Markets:

Global equities weak for a THIRD session! UK -0.8% vs +0.1% vs -1.5%!!! vs -0.9% vs +0.8%; France -0.4% vs +0.1% vs -1.8%!!! vs -0.9% vs +1.3% vs -0.9%; Germany +0.1% vs +0.6% vs -1.6%!!! vs -0.5% vs +1.3%; Japan -0.9% vs -2.3%!!! vs -0.7% vs +0.1% vs +0.2%; Hang Seng -0.9% vs +0.1% vs -2.3%!!! vs +0.2% vs +0.7%. Korea -1.5%!!! vs -1.3%! vs -0.4% vs -0.4% vs — India -0.8% vs +0.1% vs -1.2%! vs -1.2%! vs -0.4%. U.S. equity futures somewhat ‘bouncing’ – dead cat bounce? DOW +67 (64); SPX +9.20 (12); NDQ +13.75 (20).

Some random thoughts:

…yesterday, a federal court reversed some of the insider trading convictions for hedge funds. Isn’t that nice? First, they have been ripping off investors for years with their 2% plus 10% fees. Then when the market tanked, realizing they wouldn’t get back above the ‘high water mark’, many of them folded and resurrected themselves. Next came all those insider trading scandals and firings by the State of California and some other ‘wise’ investors. Then the convictions and now this…shameful! As if that isn’t bad enough, they continue to benefit from the ‘carried interest’ provision which allows the operators ordinary income to be taxed as capital gains at 35%! Finally it is getting Congress’ attention but will the Republicans have the guts to go against some of their big contributors? We’ll see, but the issue they are upset with is their 401(k)’s, where a few thousand of them have retirement funds in excess of $1 million (Romney had $101 million if you recall). But how did they do that? By buying shares of companies their private equity firms are doing and with their 401(k) money! So let’s say they get 5,000 shares at a penny a share and take it public at $30 a share…you do the math…oh, and remember they are ripping off Medicare too since without ordinary income (you know that is what ‘ordinary’ working people earn), they are not forced to contribute.

This just in: it seems Jeb Bush also has a nice offshore hedge fund…and an accompanying 401(k). Hmmm, I bet Elizabeth Warren doesn’t! She is the new ‘last hope’ for America! Vote Warren!

Note that there is a bi-partisan plan to raise the social security tax by creating a ‘donut hole’ so that the present cap remains but then kicks back in at $1 million…that alone could save social security…IF they have the cajones to do it! Wanna bet? What? And antagonize those big donors?

Have a great day!

TB

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12/2/14…a country of the wealthy…Democrat or Republican

Quote of the Day from the Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “I used up all my sick days so I’m calling in dead.” – anon

Bloomberg Quote of the Day: “Both following and leading are skills to be learned.” – David Zane Fleisher…note he said ‘both’! TB

Bloomberg Top Stories:
*Russia Sees First Recession Since -09 as Oil Plunge Compounds Sanctions-self-inflicted
*European Stocks Follow China Higher as Ruble Weakens While Oil, Gold Fall – wait China is only gaining back half of what it lost Monday! Gold still holding on to 12/1 gain
*Draghi Treads Path of ECB Powerlessness Toward QE Without Economy Overhaul !!!
*General Motors November U.S. Sales Gain of 6.5% Surpasses 2.6% Estimate – don’t buy presents…buy a new car!
*European Banks Seen Afflicted by $82 Billion Capital Gap in Leverage Test – !!!
*Carter Said to Be Obama’s Choice as Defense Secretary – Ashton not Jimmy!
*Oil Investors Risk Being Left Stranded by Swing to Tougher Climate Rules – aww!
*Saudi-Venezuela Split Revealed Behind Closed Doors as OPEC Emerges Divided – 8 countries led by Venezuela voted to reduce; Saudi’s and 3 others to maintain! NOTE: a cut requires a ‘unanimous’ vote!?!
*Bond Investors Funding Shale Boom Face $8.5 Billion Losses on Junk Debt – EGAD
*Online Consumers Stretch U.S. Holiday Shopping Season Beyond Cyber Monday – ugh!
*Andurand Hedge Fund Is Said to Expand 18% During Oil Plunge
*BlackRock’s Vecht Says Falling Oil Prices Leave Many Portfolios Outdated – and long!
*Israel Early Elections Seen Hurting War-Torn Economy as Overhauls Halted
*Houston Stadium Debt Misfire Spurs $689 Million Bond Overhaul – oops!

Monday’s Market Summary
What a difference a day makes! Bonds had a great rally on Friday – reversed yesterday! Gold plunged $34 on Friday to it low since 11/14 – yesterday hit a new low of $1141.70 the climbed to $1220.40 a HUGE ‘key reversal’ that partially closed a gap to the 10/29 low: $1226.40 before settling up $42.60!!! Crude continued on its downward trajectory with a new 5-year low of $63.72 before closing at $69.00 +$2.85, but with a ‘lower high as well as a ‘lower low.’ What about stocks? Thought you would never ask…and ugly day where a 0.1% gain for Dow Utilities took honors, the only index in the black: Worst was Dow Transports -2.7%!!!, followed by the Russell 2000 -1.6%, the two Nasdaq’s (-1.3% and 1.1% respectively)! S&P 500 was off 0.7% and the Dow 30 lost 0.3%. Ugly!!! A/D’s and Breadth were ‘super’ negative, new 52 week highs plunged back to 201 from a huge 515! New lows nearly doubled from a strong 276 to 447!!! Oh yeah, all this was validated huge volume of 4.14B shares (on the first of the month???) and by the S&P VIX which closed in very bearish territory at 14.29 +.96! Still long? Hmmmm…kind of a ‘cyber Monday’, no?

Total NYSE Volume exploded to 4.14B shares vs 2.5B vs 2.73B vs 3.36B vs 3.1B. Average volume since 9/30 is about 3.6B shares or about 600M more than the 12-month average. Shares traded on the NYSE floor (aka REAL) also rose sharply to 877M shares vs 649M shares (lowest since 11/11 and unusual for a monthend) vs 700M vs 846M – the ONLY 800+ session of Nov. – vs 707M vs 1.04B, highest since 10/31. For comparison purposes, for the prior 12 months it is a historically weak 717M shares…but since 10/1: 816B shares – including that HUGE 1.22B share day – highest since 9/19, followed by two more 1B plus days leading to options expiry!. The lowest was 11/1’s 619M share session. April 30 – September 30 we had just SEVEN 800M shares…since 10/1: 17 – just one in Nov, and FIVE 900M+ days. Add one 800M day for 12/1. A/D’s were highly negative: NYSE: -3.5x vs -1.6x vs +1.6x vs +1.2x vs +1.6x; Nasdaq -3.5x vs -2x vs +1.6x vs 1:1 vs +2.4x. Breadth was even worse: NYSE -3.8x!!! vs -2.4x! vs +1.3x vs -1.1x vs +1.1x; Nasdaq -4.7x!!! vs -1.1x vs +2.2x vs +1.1x vs +3.1x! New 52 Week Highs more than reversed to 201! vs 515! vs 321 vs 296 vs 280 – their range for the year is 39-612!!! New Lows were VERY BEARISH at 447!!! vs 276 vs 84 vs 80 vs 68. The 2014 range is 24-1043!!! S&P VIX ranged from 13.94-14.75, befoe closing at 14.29 +.96!!! Kiss ’12’ and 13’ goodbye! This six days after hitting a very bearish 15.74, highest since 11/4! Now well back in those bearish extremes that had a high of 31.06 (highest since 11/28/11!!!). The average of the past 12 months is 14.00, with a low of 10.28!…high close of 26.25 on 10/15/14! Friday is the payrolls report and a lot of data in between!

U.S. bond market closed WEAK totally reversing Friday’s STRONG session?!? The recent 12 month low yields (10’s 2.09%; 30’s 2.87%; and long TIP 0.83%), 10’s closed at 2.23% vs 2.16% -5/8; 30’s 2.96% vs 2.89% -1-1/2!, and the long TIP 0.96% vs 0.90% -1-1/2! Overnight weaker: 10’s 2.26% -3/16; 30’s 2.98% -1/4; and long TIP 0.97% -5/16. Can you ‘splain it, Lucy??? Libor update: 0.234% 3 mos.; 0.326% 6 mos. – still near their new record lows! The Fed Funds rate has averaged 0.09% and is currently 0.11-0.13%. T-Bills: 0.02% one-month, 0.02%! 3 mos, 0.11% one year.

Foreign bond yields higher except Greece which is sharply lower for a 2nd day after being hammered (Benchmark is 10yr): Germany 0.74% +1; UK 1.97%! vs 1.89%! +7!; France 1.01% vs 0.97% +2; Italy 2.01% –; Spain 1.85% +2; Portugal 2.80% -1; Greece 7.59%! -22 vs 7.85%! -28!!! 10/16’s close was 8.54%! – cycle low: 5.42%; Crisis high: 12.57%. Japan: 0.41% –.

Gold was slammed early in the session falling to $1141.70 before turning dramatically and creating a HUGE ‘key reversal’ with a high of $1220.40 that almost closed a gap going back to 10/28 ($1226.40) and closed at $1218.10 +$42.60!!! – highest since 10/28 and only the 2nd time above the 40/50 day since 10/21! 11/7’s low was $1130.40, a new 12-month low!). The last 23 sessions have had prints below $1200 – first time since 12/31/13 Last close above $1300 was on 8/15. 7/17’s session high was $1346.60, highest since March 19th!!! Res/Sup is at $1200 (psych), then the 40 day at $1202, the 50 day $1204, then the 200 day at $1275. The 12-month high is $1392.60 on 3/17, highest high since 9/4/13. 11/7’s low was $1130.40! Overnight SHARPLY lower again with a session low of $1191.40?!?, and is currently $1200.30 -$17.80?!? There have now been just 7 highs above $1200 since 10/31. Silver also plunged to $14.15 yesterday before bouncing and is currently $16.32 -.37?!? Wednesday’s high close was $16.61! 12/1’s low was $14.12, more than a five year low. CRAZY and crazy if you think you can outguess it…not another ‘Libor’?

Crude continued to freefall, bottoming out a $63.72 – a new five year plus low (6/2010)! It then came back but with a ‘lower high’ before closing at $69.00 +$2.85? lowest since June 2010! Friday’s session high was $77.83. 7 days ago it set a new recent low of $74.07, lowest since 9/17/10!!! 10/25’s high was $84.83. There have been 43!!! handles since peaking at $107.73 on June 13th, highest since 9/19/13. The record high of $147.27 was on 9/30/08, the low since on 12/30/11 is $74.95: $93.60 is the midpoint!!! Recent rally high and close are $110.70 and $110.53 respectively. RES at the 40 day ($79.45!), then the 50 day ($81.95!), and lastly the 200 day (95.98!), all increasing their rate of decline! A failure here could take us to $59!!! The recent range is now $63.72-$112.24 since 3/1/12. Overnight it is volatile wth a range of $69.32-66.54, and is currently $68.04 -.96! Note that following the financial crisis it traded down to $32.40 on 12/31/08 from a high of $147.27 just three months earlier (-78%!!!).

Global equities mostly higher, led by UK?, Japan up for a 3rd session! Hong Kong recovering; India weaker: UK +1.2% vs -0.9% vs -0.2% vs +0.2% vs +0.3%; France +0.3% vs –0.3% vs -0.3% vs -0.1% vs +1.4%; Germany – vs –0.2% vs -0.1% vs +0.6% vs +1.4%; Japan +0.4% vs +0.8% vs +1.2% vs -0.1% vs +0.3%; Hang Seng +1.2% vs -2.6%!!! vs -0.1% vs +1.2% vs -0.2% vs +2%; Korea – vs -0.8% vs -0.1% vs – vs +0.1%; India -0.4% vs -0.5% vs +0.9% vs +0.2% vs -0.6%. U.S. equity futures somewhat higher: DOW +27 (range 80); SPX +2.50 (8); NDQ +8.25 (16). Could be an interesting day!

Some random thoughts:

…to those of you who said, ‘Aha! TB’s a Democrat’, think again. The Dems have done their own damage but on a much smaller scale than the GOP.

Sadly, they had a chance for change and blew it…in fact, Obama ran on doing just that but then got caught up in healthcare: he won…but at what cost? (Don’t count on his stand on immigration hurting the Dems though). Many of those who voted for him saw him as our last ‘great white/black hope’ – TB included. As for his management skill, is it likely that three Defense secretaries all said they were ‘out of the loop’ as he ran policy with his group of insiders (cronies?). In case you missed it, here is a link to Charlie Rose’s interview of Secretary Hagel – just before he was canned. You decide if he was incompetent: Charlie Rose/Hagel. Also note that yesterday, the FBI said that ISIS is a threat in the U.S. NOW! …isn’t that what Obama got mad at him for suggesting? Yep!

As for the ‘Citizens United’ decision, while there are some Dem PACS they are dwarfed by those run by the GOP (Rove/Koch Brothers, etc). The IRS scandal was about a ridiculous as the GOP constant attacks on Benghazi: if you have a huge number of conservative PAC’s doesn’t it stand to reason you will have more inquiries into them?
As for the success of the PAC’s, consider that for all their billions, Koch brothers got six elected and Rove followed with 5…at what cost? The Senate race in North Carolina cost $100 MILLION…governor of Oklahoma $130 MILLION, both records…and shameful.

Why aren’t people voting? Because by the time a name gets on the primary ballot the outcome is assured…with a good chance of them winning in the primary if they have the PAC money behind them. Why aren’t we up in arms about the ‘selling’ of America (selling out?)? We are well on our way to a plutocracy and with a wealth gap that is the worst since before the Great Recession.

Didn’t any of you question how Mitt Romney got $101 million in his 401(k)? Well, did ya? Turns out he is one of a ‘select group’ – mostly Wall Street types who have an ‘edge’ that shouldn’t be and finally the IRS and Congress (one can hope) are doing something about it. Before a company goes public and share price is say $0.00125 a share, they buy the shares before the IPO and put them in their 401(k), thus avoiding taxes for years (if ever). That’s how they do it! IRA’s were created in 1974 and followed with 401(k)’s in 1978 and designed for the worker. Instead, it helped senior management and precipitated the move to stock options and grants over cash bonuses. It is a travesty. Note also that the ‘carried interest’ provision which allows ordinary income of hedge fund operators to get capital gains tax rates…thus avoiding payroll taxes and Medicare.

We have become a nation, of the wealthy, by the wealthy, and for the wealthy, and if that is not changed soon (and it sure won’t be with a GOP-controlled Congress), we will go the way of all the past leaders of the ‘world order’ – and deservedly so. Jefferson: your ‘great experiment’ is in danger of failing.

As stated earlier, TB is NOT a democrat. Watch this episode of Moyers & Co. to see the evils that ‘some’ Democrat politicians are allowing: Moyers/plutocracy

Note that the ‘special’ taxation of NYC High Rise Condos (only the new ‘monsters that cost from $10-30 million – each get), was ‘bought and paid for by campaign contributions – right before the last gubernatorial election. Prior to that Gov. Andrew Cuomo had created a commission on corruption with carte blanche to investigate any area of state government. BUT just before the election…less than a week…he received contributions from condo developers to sign a law which would reduce a $200,000 tax on one of these $20 million condos – one, not the entire building – to $20,000! When the commission decided to investigate the governor’s office – Cuomo disbanded it! Now THAT’s chutzpah!
Republicans? Feel better now? …or just as digusted as TB is?

God Bless America…please!

TB

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8/26/14…bend it like Dimon…

Quote of the Day from the Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “It’s five o’clock and the children are still alive. I’ve done my job.” – Roseanne

Bloomberg Quote of the day: “In the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary.” – Aaron Rose…a rose by any other name?

(Repeating) This week’s economic calendar is full of important indicators. The highlight of the week will be the Q2 GDP 2nd Estimate (Thursday) and July Personal Income (Friday). We will also get July New Home Sales and August Dallas Fed Manufacturing (Monday), July Durable Goods Orders, June Case-Shiller Home Prices, August Richmond Fed Manufacturing and August Consumer Confidence (Tuesday), August Chicago PMI and August Consumer Sentiment Final (Friday). Courtesy of Economic Advisory Service

Bloomberg Top Stories:

*Burger King to Buy Tim Horton’s for $11.4 Billion in Move to Lower Taxes – off to Canada!

*Bonds Climb as Stocks in Europe Advance; Gold Rebounds, Yen Strengthens

*European Bank Cleanup Driving Sales of $1.72 Trillion of Unwanted Assets

*Pershing Square Gains 30% in 2014 as Ackman wins on Burger King (long), Herbalife (short)

*Yellen View of Labor-Market Slack Muddied by Pent-Up Wage Deflation Thesis – see???

*China Said to Weigh $16 Billion Fund for Network of Car-Charging Stations

*Tim Horton’s Coffee Poised to Bolder Burger King’s Ailing Breakfast Menu – screw taxpayers!

*Kite Pharma Rises on Study While Best Buy Declines’ U.S. Premarket Movers

*Close Your Eyes and Imagine Biting Into a Canadian Apple Pie – as American as…Canada?

*Beirut’s Champs-Elysees Beggars Reveal Despair of Refugees From Syria War

*U.S. Starts Flights Over Syria in Possible Precursor to Strikes, AP Says

*Egypt-U.A.E. Sent Secret Airstrikes Against Libya Militants, NYT Reports – need to know???

*Israel Brings Down Second Gaza High-Rise as Egypt Leads Cease-Fire Efforts – just great!

*Self-Financed Terrorists Islamic State Now Resembles Talban With Oil Wells

Monday’s Market Summary:

Oh, yeah, TB: stocks were higher…what have you got to say about that?!? Yes, they were – led by Dow Utilities (+0.6%!), while the rest settled for 0.300.5% gains…and TB doesn’t like rallies where all the indices are up about the same. Especially low volume rallies (before a long weekend), 2.2B vs 2.3B which is incredibly weak! How weak is that? Real trades on the NYSE were just 494M shares – a new 2014 low (not even 400M at the bell!); excluding 12/24’s 272M share half-session, that is the lowest volume since11/29/13…ponder that! A/D’s and Breadth were moderately positive…but look: the VIX ROSE, just .23 but on an up day with a range of just 0.52??? – virtually non-existent and fails to confirm any rally.

Total NYSE Volume was declined again to a very weak 2.2B shares vs 2.3B vs 2.62B vs 2.56B vs 2.64B. Real NYSE Volume plunged again to THE lowest of 2014: 494M shares vs 521M vs 567M vs 542M vs 556M. Last week’s average was just 558M shares – this week won’t even do that well! There have been just four sessions above 800M since 4/28! The 12-month average is a historically weak 701M shares. Since 4/30 the average volume has been just 659M shares ranging from 517M to 927B….12 month high is 2.06B shares on 9/20/13!

A/D’s were modestly positive: +1.6x vs -1.6x vs +1.5x vs 1:1 vs +1.8x; Nasdaq +1.4x vs -1.7x vs +1.2x vs -1.7x vs +1.2x. Breadth was slightly better: NYSE +1.5x vs +1.1x vs +1.5x vs +2.1x vs +4.3x! Nasdaq +1.9x vs +1.4x vs +1.4x vs +1.3x vs +4.8x. New 52 Week Highs rose 50% to 296 vs 198 vs 266 vs 228 vs 294 – recent range is 46-580!!! New Lows about even at 52 vs 56 vs 71 vs 53 vs 60 – recent range is 24-260! S&P VIX up slightly to 11.70 +.23…on an up day? The range was an unbelievably tight .53: 11.24-11.77?

Bonds closed higher for a second day: 10 yr 2.38% +3/16; 30 yr 3.13%! +1/2, the long TIP 0.85%! +9/16. Overnight, inching higher again: 10’s 2.38% +1/16; 30’s 3.12% +3/16; and long TIP 0.84% +1/4. The (record?) low of 0.36% was set on 4/5/13.

Libor update: 0.238% 3 mos.; 0.331% 6 mos., both remain near their record lows, set recently: 0.222% and 0.320% respectively! NOTE the Fed Funds rate has averaged 0.09% since 5/22/13 and is at 0.08-0.10% where it has been for weeks! Foreign bond yields generally lower and again led by the PIIGS! Germany 0.94% -1; UK 2.45% -5; France 1.28% -3; Italy 2.42%!!! -6; Spain 2.16%!!! -9!; Portugal 3.01% –; Greece 5.51%! -5; The recent high on selloff was 6.75%. Recently 5.42% to 12.57%. Japan: 0.49% -1.

Gold closed lower – traded in a $4 range! – at $1278.90 -$1.30. LastThursday, it plunged to $1272.00, lowest since 6/18 – it’s 4th straight decline and sub-$1300 close since 8/6. It remains well below the 40/50 and 200 day m/a’s. 7/17’s session high was $1346.60, highest since March 19th!!! 6/9’s $1240.20 was lowest since 1/31/14!!! First RES is the 200 day $1285, then the 40/50 day at $1305. Next support? $1270 or so! Note the recent high of $1392.60 on 3/17, highest high since 9/4/13…that too ended the session with a negative key reversal sparking the downturn! Jan. 2’s low was $1181.40 – A MULTI-DECADE LOW!!! Overnight it is higher at $1288.00 +$9.10 with a high of $1291.70.

Crude had a second straight inside session closing at $93.35 -.30 – range was just 0.90! Thursday’s low was $92.50, lowest since 1/15/14! (big driving weekend ahead, then we may see gas following suit). It has had FOURTEEN handles since 6/30! 7/22’s high was $105.20, highest since 7/2. 7/15’s session low was $90.01 – lowest since 3/21. 6/20’s run to $107.73 was highest since 9/19/13 (a huge down session which put it in freefall. 3/2’s session low was $97.37, lowest since 2/4! 1/14’s low was worst since 5/2/13: $91.24! The record high of $114.83 was on 5/2/11, the low since on 10/4/11 is $74.95: $93.60 is the midpoint!!! Recent rally high and close are $110.70 and $110.53 respectively. RES at the 200 day ($99.77), then the 40 day ($99.93), then the 50 day ($101.21)…HUGE drops daily now!!! The range is $85.61-$112.24 since March 1, 2012. Overnight it is slightly higher at $93.57 +.22 with a range of just 42 cents!!!

European equity markets higher, Asia mixed: UK +0.4% vs closed vs -0.1% vs +0.2% vs -0.5%; France +0.6% vs +1.2% vs -0.8% vs +0.8% vs -0.8%; Germany +0.2% vs +1.2% vs -0.4% vs +0.6% vs -0.07%; Japan -0.6% vs +0.5% vs -0.3% vs +0.9% vs –; Hang Seng -0.4% vs +0.2% vs +0.5% vs -0.7% vs +0.2%; Korea +0.4% vs +0.2% vs +0.6% vs -1.4% vs +0.1% vs +0.9%; India – vs +0.1% vs +0.2% vs +0.2% vs -0.4%. U.S. equity futures slightly higher: DOW +27 (range 49); SPX +3.40 (6); NDQ +8 (10).

 

Some random thoughts:

…Jamie Dimon says “I love America’ and yes he does as it made him rich…but do anything for it? No freaking way! He and his bank have been shoveling money offshore along with the rest of the ‘proud’ Americans…bet he flies an American flag 24/7 too…would also bet he never did a day of public service in his life…especially military service! TB hates all those ‘proud’ Americans with the flags flying in their yards who act as unpatriotic as they can. (Talk of ‘the Mittster’ making another run for the Oval Office…perhaps he can ‘splain to us this time his $100M plus 401(k) and offshore accounts…could sink him!)

The latest announced overnight where Burger King is buying Tim Horton’s for better coffee and as much as everyone likes to laugh at ‘socialist’ Canada, a better tax deal! Where are the public pension funds on this? Why aren’t they selling in droves Medtronic and any other company who does this? Meanwhile the poor employees get to foot the bill…along with long-time shareholders getting hit with tax implications. Where the hell is Congress? Lining their coffers and pockets with money to keep the beat going on. Is this a great country or what? …well it used to be!

Remember Leona Helmsley? “Paying taxes is for the little people.” – talk about being ahead of her time!

Remember what TB said yesterday about getting out and having fun instead of warping your mind and spirit by watching screens all day? Well…today he is off to the Minnesota State Fair, voted THE BEST in the country…take that Iowa! Can’t think of a single reason to stay here at my desk looking wanly at the lake…can you?

Have a great day!

 

TB

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5/23/14…a Memorial Day to Reflect…Please do!

Quote of the Day from the Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me.” – Fred Allen…a dry, very funny ‘50’s comedian

Bloomberg Quote of the Day: “If life doesn’t offer a game worth playing, then invent a new one.” – Anthony J. D’Angelo…WS already did: it’s called ‘sucker the investor.’

Bloomberg Top Stories:
*German Business Confidence Drops More Than Forecast as Economy Seen Slower
*Barclay’s $44 Million U.K. Gold Fixing Fine Hurts Rehabilitation Efforts – good, not enough!
*Euro Weakens as German Confidence Falls; Spanish, Italian Bonds Advance – Achtung!
*Spain Reaps the Reward of Economic Growth While Italy’s Yield Gap Widens
*Hacking Indictment Hints at Chinese Companies That Benefited From Attacks – good luck!
*BNP Paribas Rebound Wagers Surge as Clarity Emerges on Size of U.S. Fines
*Reynolds Is Said to Weigh Lorillard Purchase Amid Months of Negotiations
*Morgan Stanley’s London Equities Team of Four Led by Mackay Said to Leave
*Noble Returns to London Liquified Gas Trading as U.S. Shale Adds Volume – flare it!
*Ukraine, EU Elections, U.S. GDP, Pfizer Deadline – all to look forward to next week
*Golf Industry Stuck in Sand Trap as Thousands of Americans Leave the Sport- ever been to Myrtle Beach, S.C.? 21 championship courses BUT FORTY-NINE miniature golf locations! Fact!
*Putin’s Black Sea Singapore Dream Leaves Crimeans Without Banks or Burgers – cringing?
*Putin Says Russia Will Work With Elected President of Ukraine After Vote
*Thai Coup Risks Deadly Clashes as Thaksin Camp Is Seen as Better Organized
*Obama to Unveil San Antonio Mayor Castro as Choice for Housing Secretary
*Russia Threatens to Counter NATO Buildup on Its Borders as Rivalry Continues – not good!
*Congress Spurns Pentagon Cost Reductions Cuts From A-a0 to Base Closures – this is sick! The GOP can find NO cuts in defense…it’s a sieve for money run by more oligarchs!
*Scottish Nuclear Subs Show Independence Risks More Than Just U.K. Economy – in kilts?

Thursday’s Market Summary:

First off, today will be an early close for bonds (we always get the breaks, right?), which means it will be probably closed by the time you read this…so you can devote the rest of your day to stocks….you know…the things that really matter (joke!).
Ah a nice rally…didn’t you think? Oops, that was Wednesday…yesterday all indices ere up but the winner was the Russell 2000 +0.9%, followed by DOW UTILITIES!!! +0.8%, the rest were up from 0.2% (S&P 500) to 0.6% (Nasdaq Composite) followed by Dow Transports +0.5%. Let’s see what did we forget? Oh, yeah,,,the Dow which was up 1% Wednesday followed up with a puny 0.1% gain! Does anything have traction here?…besides Utilities and other income producing stocks, REITS, and ETF’s? Lemme know if you find the answer.

Total NYSE Volume sure didn’t look like excited (but we are ahead of a long weekend with most not trading tomorrow) declining a bit more to an even weaker 2.74B shares vs 2.77B vs 2.97B vs 2.64B!!! …that’s from 3.18B last Friday (remember it was an options expiration!) from an average 3.53B – on a ‘down’ day! Real trades on the floor of the NYSE stunk slipping further to 577M shares from a very weak 587M and now 147M BELOW the 12-month average! Yesterday;s achieved notoriety by replacing Tuesday’s 584M share day as the second lowest of 2014…1/3’s 544M is the low…note 12/31’s was 568M shares. Worse: since 4/30 the average has been just 663M shares with just two 700M days – one barely! The high this month is 775M while the low is 584M just below yesterday’s! Nice rally, eh???
A/D’s were positive again but meaningless: NYSE +2x vs +2.6x vs -2.4x vs +1.8x vs +2.1x vs -2.3x vs -2.1x; Nasdaq +2.1x vs +1.5x! vs -3.1x vs +2.2x vs +1.5x vs -2.1x vs -2.8x. Breadth was similar: NYSE +1.8x vs +2.6x vs -4.1x! vs +1.6x vs +1.5x vs -4x!!! vs -2.1x; Nasdaq +2.6x vs +2.7x vs -3.1x! vs +3x! vs +1.5x vs -2.5x vs -3.3x. But who cares when the volume is so low? New 52 Week Highs rose but about average at 187 vs 132 vs 111 vs 143 vs 71!!! vs 107 vs 208 vs 233 vs 93!!! New Lows dropped sharply to a weak 62 (never short a thin market) vs 95 vs 118 vs 72 vs 180 vs 102 vs 62 vs 65 vs 214!!!
Lastly volatility…S&P VIX remains bullish…up just .10 to 12.01 with a range of 11.68-12.09 – narrower than Wednesday’s and inside it.

Overnight markets as of 2pm EDT (late!,:

Bonds closed slightly lower for a second day after the nice rally last Monday. Not surprising given the early close ahead of the Memorial Day weekend. The 10 yr closed at 2.55% -3/16 vs 2.53% vs 2.54% vs 2.52%; 30’s 3.42% -1/4 vs 3.41% vs 3.38% vs 3.39% vs 3.35%. The long TIP, as low as 1.00% a week ago, closed 1.09 UP 3/16 vs 1.10% vs 1.08% vs 1.08% vs 1.02%. Overnight and this afternoon weaker again: 10’s 2.56% -1/4; 30’s 3.43% -3/8; and long TIP 1.10% –. Cycle highs: 30 yr high was 3.97% on 12/31; the 10 yr recent high 3.03%! Long TIP was 1.64%. The (record?) low of 0.36% was set on 4/5/13.
Libor update: 0.229% 3 mos.; 0.324% 6 mos., both just off their record lows, set recently: 0.227% and 0.32% respectively! NOTE the Fed Funds rate has averaged 0.08% since 5/22/13 and is 0.07% -0.09%. Foreign bond market mixed with Italy, Spain and Portugal sharply lower: Germany 1.41% +1; UK 2.65% –; France 1.81 –; Italy 3.16% -8!!!; Spain 2.98%! -6!; Portugal 3.74% -6!; Greece which bottomed at 5.83% on 2/24 still struggling but closed strong yesterday and is now 6.38% -1 vs 6.39% – high was 6.75%. Highly volatile!!! Range is 5.77% to 12.57%. Japan: 0.58% -1.

Gold closed slightly higher at a meaningless $1295.40 +6.90 with just a blip to $1304.10 in a very narrow range session. This after hitting $1309.20 a week ago. It remains below the 40/50/200 days and the psych support level of $1300 with first res at the 40 day $1297, then the 200 day $1299, and the 50 day $1306. Following the ‘key reversal’ on 3/17 after printing new recent high of $1392.60, highest high since 9/4/13 – which ended in an outside day and nearly a negative key reversal! Jan. 2’s low was $1181.40 – A MULTI-DECADE LOW!!! Overnight slightly weaker in a narrow range, now $1291.60 -$3.60 – session low $1289.80.

Crude closed slightly lower at $103.74 -.33 in a very narrow inside session. Weds. high was $104.29 – highest since being slammed on 4/22! 3/2’s session low was $97.37, lowest since 2/4! 1/14’s low was worst since 5/2/13: $91.24! The record high of $114.83 was on 5/2/11, the low since on 10/4/11 is $74.95: $93.60 is the midpoint!!! Recent rally high and close are $110.70 and $110.53 respectively. It remains well above all three moving averages with support at the 40 day ($101.69) then the 50 day ($101.21), and 200 day $100.34. The recent range is $85.61-$112.24 since March 1, 2012. Overnight, modestly higher at $104.05 +.31, high $104.08.

Global equity markets little changed; India and Japan higher: UK -0.2% vs +0.1% vs -0.5% vs -0.3% vs -0.1%; France +0.1% vs +0.2% vs -0.2% vs +0.1% vs +0.1%; Germany +0.2% -despite weaker economic confidence??? vs +0.5% vs -0.2% vs -0.1% vs -0.3%; Japan +0.9% vs -0.2% vs +0.5% vs -0.6% vs -1.4%! Hang Seng +0.1% vs – vs +0.6% vs – vs -0.1%; Korea +0.1% vs +0.1% vs -0.1% vs +0.1% vs +0.2%; India +1.3%! vs -0.3% vs +0.1% vs +1%! vs +0.9%. U.S. Stock Index Futures boring: DOW +7 (range 23); SPX +1.30 (3!); NDQ +4.25 (7!).
Some random thoughts:

…as a Viet Nam vet TB asks that you think of those who gave their lives…and limbs…and much more for this country that has become so undeserving. TB felt this especially after visiting our nations capitol and noting that the ‘me’ generation is very much alive and well.

Two years ago, TB voted a second time for Barrack Obama, the first because John McCain has even less clout in the GOP than John Boehner does at controlling the dysfunctional House – all his party! Big John sealed the deal with his choice of Sarah Palin as his running mate plus there was a promise of ‘changing how government operates from Obama. Nevermind that they didn’t have a clue how they were going to change it (per Lawrence Lessig), nor did they attempt to do so. The last time as there was NO choice…not when Mitt Romney proposed ‘changes’ to make the country even more ‘oligarchial’ – a concern of some of his fellow Mormons who feared a backlash if he didn’t do a good job of running the country.

George W. Bush…and the ‘acting’ president, Dick Cheney, along with Donald Rumsfeld did more to deprive Americans of their rights than any other president in our history. Watch Frontline’s two-part series The United States of Secrets, part two is the most important as it opens with a summary of the first part. The point is the Snowden is no more a traitor than Daniel Ellsberg was (although TB thought he was at the time), in releasing the Pentagon Papers which shed light on the government’s lies about the Viet Nam war (note Ellsberg said that Snowden was right to flee the country – as opposed to the joint leaders of the Intelligence (sic) Committee, Rep. Rogers (R) and Sen. Feinstein (D), who believed everything that Gen. Clapper (watch the movements of him in his testimony and you decide if he was lying – a fact he later said in a memo to the committee! Of course, no perjury charges for him).

Obama not only failed to change government but he changed the level of the cabinet with people second-guessing those in charge and influencing Obama. He promised to end the spying, and to shutdown Guantanamo…instead he bolstered both.

He speaks passionately about everything but we have come to know that it goes no further than that. He drew a line in the sand on Syria…then what? Iran? He was right in his handling of Libya and is being crucified in yet another politically-motivated ‘investigation’ of Benghazi. The truth? They don’t want the truth…just to humiliate…just as the House has voted over 50 times to end Obamacare. A wasted of time, resources, and creating even more angst among both parties and the public. Stuff happens! Also, the Ambassador was warned not to go to Benghazi and there were ten CIA operatives with him…of which two were casualties. Let’s be honest!

We hear a lot about what his legacy will be. To be sure, the ACA is a step in the right direction but the wrong step…it does nothing to control costs of care or drugs…especially drugs which he sold out to the Pharma lobby on. But so far that is the only legacy TB see…a ‘half-vast’ one (some might say half-assed). How sad that the misguided Occupy Wall Street movement (sic) was the only attempt by anyone at Wall Street accountability (the name itself is a negative…TB proposed Reform Corporate America (RCA) – and Congress. Too bad all those people who have written excellent books on the crisis can’t band together and strike boldly at Congress in unison. Is that too much to ask? Apparently, so…individually, it is divide and conquer…and it is working!

It is time for us to demand Congress represent WE, the people and not the oligarchs of Wall Street, the defense industry and over the well-being of Main Street. Our ‘free’ government has become a sham…a mockery and one which lowers us in the eyes of the rest of the world.

Will change come? Of course it will…but will it be too late for the government and country as we know it. If that comes to pass it will be a very sad Memorial Day for us all…especially the future generations.

Disagree? That is your right…and TB does not expect or wish you to simply agree with him. But he does hope you will think and act responsibly and do the right thing. Nothing is not an option.

Have a wonderful but reflective Memorial Day weekend,

TB

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8/5/13…to the GOP: it’s later than you think!

From The Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “A guilty conscience is the mother of invention.” – Carolyn Wells

Bloomberg Quotes of the Day: “Children learn to smile from their parents.” – Shinichi Suzuki…is that how Paul Ryan’s parents smile??? TB

Labor market trends are slowly improving with modest gains in nonfarm payroll employment. Moreover, the unemployment rate dropped as the participation rate slipped.  GDP growth accelerated in Q2, however, real consumer spending growth weakened compared to Q1. Meanwhile, consumer confidence, durable goods, factory orders and new home sales rose while construction spending and motor vehicle sales fell. Inflation remains subdued. Next week’s economic calendar is fairly light. The highlight of the week will be the July ISM Non-Manufacturing Survey (Monday). We will also get June International Trade and June Job Openings (Tuesday), June Consumer Credit (Wednesday) and June Wholesale Trade (Friday). Courtesy of Economic Advisory Service.

Bloomberg Top Stories:

*Treasuries Proving Safer Than AAA Sovereigns Two Years After S&P Downgrade – !

*Stocks Rise in Europe for Sixth Day as Oil Drops; U.S. Milk Futures Gain

*HSBC Falls After Missing Profit Estimates as Gulliver Says Growth Slowing – !!!

*U.K. Services Accelerate More Than Forecast to Fastest Pace in Six Years – ?!?

*Tourre Case Buoys SEC’s Enforcement Credentials as Congress Weighs Funding – oh yeah…they nailed a ‘lieutenant’ …what about the BIG DOGS: Blankfein and Co.?

*No Detroit Fallout Across U.S. as General Obligations Rally – what about pensions?

*Topix Best Friend Seen in Bernanke’s Taper as Abe-Inspired 66% rally

*Zimbabwe Stocks Tumble by Most Since 2009 After Mugabe’s Election Victory

*Swiss Housing Market Risks Continued Increase in Second Quarter, UBS Says

*Rusal Says Aluminum Premiums Poised  to Stay High as LME Tackles Backlog

*Hidden New Hampshire Billionaire Cohen Delivers Fortune in Unmarked Trucks

*Tale of Bond Salesman Who Wasn’t Reveals RBS Human Error at Several Levels

*Al-Qaeda Terrorism Threat Extends Closure of Some U.S. Embassies by a Week

*Turkish Court Imprisons Army Chief With Dozens of Generals on Coup Charges

*Assad Rules Out Political Solution to Syrian Civil War Seeking to Oust Him

 

A rally for the wrong reasons…worse it was yet another ‘low volume’ rally that only had momentum due to the payrolls report which, following Thursday’s strong rally, created some big trading opportunities.

The Nasdaq 100 was best performer at +0.6%, gaining 17 points…all of which was contained in just SEVEN stocks which gained more than one point: APPL +4.8 vs +3.6; QCOM +2.2; VIAB +1.9, and BIIB/MSFT/CSCO/FOXB/BIDU/DELL. There were no loser of one or more points. Note that gainers beat losers by just 1.1:1!

The VIX trading range slumped to 11.98-12.74 – a new recent low and it closed AT the low, down 0.96! A/D’s were barely changed and mixed while Breadth was slightly positive (Nasdaq best at +1.6x)..

…here’s the book:

* Dow 30 +0.2% vs +0.8% vs -0.1% vs flat vs -0.2% vs +0.5%; Dow Transports DOWN 0.3% vs +3.3%!!! vs +0.6% vs +0.3% vs -1.1%!!!; Russell 2000 FLAT vs +1.4%! vs +0.3% vs +0.3% vs -0.8%; Dow Utilities -0.1% vs +1% vs -0.7% vs +0.3% vs +0.3%; S&P 500 +0.2% vs +1.3% vs flat vs flat vs -0.4%. Nasdaq Composite +0.4% vs +1.4% vs +0.3% vs +0.5% vs -0.4%; NDQ 100 +0.6% vs +1.2% vs +0.2% vs +0.5% vs -0.2%.

*NYSE Volume slumped to a below average 3.13B shares from an average 3.78B vs 3.81B vs 3.31B vs 2.82B vs 2.74B vs 3.31B vs 3.07B vs 2.42B (3rd weakest of 2013…1.96B is the lowest of 2013). REAL NYSE Volume fell sharply to a below average 678M shares vs 798M vs 904M vs 678M vs 579M vs 596M (562M is lowest since 7/3). The 12-month average is 715M shares. The average since 6/30 is now 685M shares, ranging from 482M to 906M, 482M being the 2013 low! There have been just SEVEN 1B+ share sessions! There have been 30 800M+ shares in 2013: 12 up, 17 down, and one mixed, but on trades of less than that 92 have been up and 35 down …there have now been 30 mixed sessions.

*New 52 week highs have ranged from 33-864. They plunged again to 458 vs 730 vs 307 vs 257 vs 209. New lows also declined to 80 vs 108 vs 111 vs 69 vs 76 – 27 is the low.  

  1. Advance/Declines were nearly unchanged: +1.1x vs +1.6x vs +1.1x vs +1.1x vs -2.2x (recent range -17.5x to +4.4x) on NYSE and -1.1x vs +2.6x vs +1.2x vs +1.1x vs -2.2x (recent -3.5x to +3x). Breadth was similar but Nasdaq higher: +1.1x vs +3.3x vs +1.2x vs -1.1x vs +2.8x (recent -18.6x!!! to +6.9x!!!) on NYSE and +1.6x vs +3.2x! vs +1.1x vs +2.2x vs -1.6x (recent -12.8x to +6.2x)  
  2. NYSE Financials were slightly higher for only the 2nd  time in six sessions by +0.2% vs +1.5% vs -0.2% vs -0.3% vs -0.7%. BofA was most active but fell 0.2% after rising 2.4%, closing at $14.84 -.11 after hitting $15.03 7 days ago – highest since Jan. 14 and now major res. Brokers +0.2% vs +2% vs +0.5% vs -0.1% vs -0.9%; KBW Banks -0.1% vs +1.9% vs +0.5% vs +0.1% vs -0.9%; Nasdaq Banks -0.2% vs +1.8% vs +0.1% vs flat vs -1%! vs -0.5% USB +03% and a new high…so did GS/MS and UBS which rose 2.3%???.  
  3. Volatility (S&P VIX) declined again to 11.98 -.96 with a new lower range of 11.98-12.74 with last Tuesday’s high being 14.14!!!  This takes out 12.07 as the lowest since April 12th! VIX peaked at 20.49, plunged to 18.90 on June options expiry then closed at 20.11 on 6/24 and has been down below 14 since! 6/24’s session high of 21.91 was highest since 12/31/12 (22.72)!!! The range since April ‘12 is 11.05 (multi-year low o n 3/14/13) to 21.9. It is well below the 40/50 day (15.65/15.34) and the 200 day (14.95)!!!…ytd the range is 11.05 (3/14) to 21.92 (6/24)!

Global stocks mixed and little changed ex-Japan: UK -0.4% vs -0.2% vs +0.1% vs +0.7% vs +0.3%; France +0.1% vs flat vs +0.5% vs -0.4% vs +0.5%; Germany -0.2% vs +0.1% vs +1.2% vs -0.4% vs +0.4%; Japan -1.4%!!! vs +3.3%!!! vs +2.5%!!! vs -1.5%! vs +1.5%! vs -3.3%!!! vs -3%!!! vs -1.1%!;  Hang Seng +0.1% vs +0.5% vs +0.9% vs -0.3% vs +0.5%; Korea -0.4% vs +0.1% vs +0.4% vs -0.2% vs +0.9%; India +0.1% vs -0.8% vs -0.2% vs flat vs -1.3%. U.S. equity futures slightly weaker in what has become the norm – a very narrow trading range: DOW -21; SPX -2.70; NDQ -1.25.

Bonds had a big rally Friday – especially 10’s which rose 1 point while the 30 yr rose 1-1/8, and the long TIP also a point – all back in lower half of old trading range, but slightly weaker overnight: 10 yr Treasury 2.63% -5/16 (recent range 2.74% to 1.63%!!!), and the 30 yr range of 2.82% to 3.77%, currently 3.72% -9/16. The long TIP is 1.35% -5/8. The (record?) low of 0.36% was set on 4/5. Recent high 1.53%! Libor update: 0.265% 3 mos, 0.396% 6 mos. Both remain near the Jan. 2010 record lows (0.245% and 0.382% respectively). Foreign bond yields modestly higher across the board – ex Japan – after a nice rally following Friday’s U.S. payrolls: Germany 1.67% +2; UK 2.45% +3; France 2.23% +4, Italy 4.25% +1; Spain 4.56% +1; Portugal 6.44% +1; Greece 9.65% +4 vs 9.69% vs 9.64% -18!!! vs 9.80% vs 9.79% vs 9.81% vs 9.81% -10 vs 9.91% vs 10.02% +19 vs 9.81% vs 9.95% +17 vs 9.86% vs -13 vs 9.93% vs 10.07% vs 10.02% -16!!! vs 10.27% -19!!! vs 10.33% -25!!! vs 10.69% vs 10.85% +28!!! vs 10.52% vs 10.54% +40!!! vs 10.85% -37!!! vs 11.22%. Recent range: 8.04% to 12.57%.  Japan 0.77% DOWN 4.

Gold closed slightly lower for a second session but remains above the critical $1300 closing at $1310.50 -.70. 7/23’s session high was $1349.20 – highest since 6/20! 6/27’s intraday low was $1179.40 – lowest since at least 2011 and now critical support. $1300 remains psychological support, and it remains between the 40 day $1305 and the 50 day $1324 – both still falling. lt is way below, the 200 day – $1548!!! Overnight it is weaker but $1300 has held…so far. Friday’s low was $1282.40 – lowest and first time below $1300 since 7/19!!! It is currently $1305.80 -$4.70. Crude also closed lower at $106.94 -.95 – following Tuesday’s session low of $102.67. It remains above the 40/50 day m/a’s (101.47/99.92), both rising. The 200 day ($93.79) is distant support. MAJOR SUP is $104.21 -36 – a triple bottom from 7/10-7/12….it traded below it for five straight sessions before rallying last Weds. 4/18’s low of $85.61 was lowest since 12/11! It is weaker overnight at $106.06 -.88. The high of $108.93 on 7/19! The range is $85.61-$109.32 since March 1, 2012.

Some random thoughts:

Hope you got out on Friday – like the big traders did – why waste a nice day? One has to wonder what on earth is keeping both the Dow and S&P at those record highs…it sure isn’t fundamentals.

It will still take FIVE years at the current employment levels to get us back to early 2008, but that is only a smidgeon of the problem: full time with benefits jobs have DECLINED while part-time/no benefits jobs are on the rise with many people holding two jobs just to make ends meet…or at least get close. Meanwhile, business…and the Grand Obstructionist Party continue to fight an increase in the minimum wage. Isn’t that simply amazing? By keeping wages down, increasing hours and adding machines they are increasing productivity – but at what cost to the economy…and our society? The Wealth Gap continues to soar…led by CEO compensation…ask yourself this: how long can this continue?

What is wrong with the GOP? Have they gone mad? The former ‘party of Lincoln’ would have him turning over in his grave…he died for this??? Shut it down is the watchword but unlike the Newtster, there is no cohesive plan…just cut spending and taxes…what a ship of fools!  Today TB will focus on two points which show what the true Tea Party agenda…as defined by the Koch brothers…two of the greediest men on the planet!

First, they are willing to shut down the entire government just to stop Obamacare. They say they want to repeal and reform it. If they get their way though it will disappear and you can be there will be NO new legislation…this from what was originally a GOP idea until the Dems seized on it.  We are a disgrace as a nation…the only industrialized nation that doesn’t take care of its citizens…what ever happened to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness? Doesn’t health fall within those categories? Here are the problems: health insurance must be regulated at the federal NOT the state level, doctors fees and hospital costs must be contained (you can go to Brussels and get hip replacement for a fraction of the cost here…and they have less complications…some insurers are even paying for people to do just that!). Then we have to take control of prescription drugs in two ways: first, let Medicare negotiate prices and stop advertisements (again) on TV for prescription drugs which would reduce the people going to the doctor and putting pressure on them to prescribe something they don’t need…yet we all pay for!

Second, is immigration…the GOP ‘path to citizenship’ is a really bad joke. First, those living here (who have been paying social security by the way), must pay back taxes, and then…and only then…can they go to the back of the line and apply for citizenship? In other words: no way, Jose! It ain’t gonna happen…which suits them just fine.

This is a party bent on self-destruction and for what? They took a moderate, Mitt Romney who had created a state health program and made him run as an unelectable conservative. You have to wonder at the mentality of the ‘leaders’ of the party…especially when respected members of the party are mocked…like McCain, even Graham, McConnell and others…have they gone  mad???

Not telling you what to think or believe…TB has never, and never will, do that! But you had better decide what is best for the future of this country and you had better do it fast.

…it’s later than you think…thanks for that Charles Dickens (and so much more).

TB

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