200804.30
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What Now?

Are we near an inflection point in markets? I have heard numerous talking heads on CNBC recently saying that markets are near a turning point. The mantra goes something like this: the dollar is near a bottom, therefore commodities are topping out and stocks will move higher. While all this may come true, I think…

200804.30
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Fed Speak

The FOMC cut interest rates by another 1/4 point today. Here is the statement released after the meeting with my interpretation of its real meaning: The Federal Open Market Committee decided today to lower its target for the federal funds rate 25 basis points to 2 percent. We really didn’t have any good reason but…

200804.30
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Still Waiting…..

1st Quarter GDP grew 0.6%. Not a great number under any circumstances but still not a negative number. I have been consistent in my belief that the US economy will avoid recession – for now. The problems in the economy are primarily financial problems. These problems are obviously having an effect on the economy but…

200804.25
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Putting a Face on Free Trade

Democrats who oppose the free trade agreement with Columbia (I would say “politician” but I can’t find a Republican who opposes the deal) claim their opposition is due to human rights abuses in Columbia, specifically murders of labor officials. Nicholas Kristof points out in this NYT Op-Ed that the real human rights abuse is in…

200804.25
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Where Our Money Goes

Arnold Kling has a post at EconLog that shows how our tax dollars are being spent: Figures in parentheses are from FY 2000, when we ran a $200 billion surplus. I am estimating as best I can from these tables Defense: $515 billion ($294)Homeland Security: $38 billion ($0; was in Domestic Necessary)Domestic Necessary: $713 billion…

200804.25
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Protect Us From Bacon Dogs!

Drew Carey has a new video at Reason TV on the efforts of the LA County Health Department to protect us from Bacon Dogs. Apparently it is critical that LA remove these hazardous items from the streets of LA. Amid the hustle and bustle of downtown Los Angeles, there exists another world, an underground world…

200804.24
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Recession? Not Yet….

Kelly Evans has in interesting post at the WSJ economics blog about the potential for recession: We know by now that the old rule of thumb for recession – two consecutive quarters of negative growth in gross domestic product (GDP) – is out the window. Still, at least there were two quarters of contracting GDP…

200804.22
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Feed the World? Free the Market!

Sean Corrigan points out that the solutions being offered to food shortages will only make the problems worse: Instead, the policies actually being pursued can only enhance scarcity, while the inability to finance such mechanisms of self-defeat honestly can only lead to a further descent into inflation — an age-old curse poised to undermine prosperity…

200804.22
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Academic Imprimatur for Our Investment Strategy

Our investment strategy is based on the idea that including non correlated assets in a portfolio can raise returns while reducing volatility. The difference between our portfolios and traditional portfolios is that we use assets whose returns have low or negative correlation to stocks. Traditional portfolios pay lip service to this concept by including bonds…

200804.22
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The Manufacturing Myth

Both Democratic canidates for President have talked on the campaign trail about the decline of manufacturing in the US. They imply that the US doesn’t manufacture anything anymore and blame the loss of manufacturing jobs on free trade with low wage countries such as China. The problem with that argument is that it simply isn’t…