Friday, May 7, 2010

SAR #10127

It’s getting a bit scary out there.

Chose One From Column A:  (a)  Ooops, I hit the wrong key.  (b) Computer trades of the nano second kind. ( c)  A run on European banks. (d) Cyberterrorism or a hacker attack.  Or  (e)  Actual panic selling? Anything but (e) makes you wonder how smart it is to let Wall Street play with all the marbles without grownup supervision.

Comparative Anatomy:  Compared to the Dow, the unemployment numbers were boring, with unemployment claims dipping 7,000 week/week to 444,000 and a modest 4,750 decrease in the 4-week moving average to 458,500.

Re-Tale:  After Easter drove March same-store retail sales to a 9.1% y/y increase, April stumbled in with an unfashionable 0.5% rise.

Scoop?  A Charlie Gasparino story on Fox claimed that Goldman Sachs was willing to pay up to $5 billion to get the SEC to go away.

Dilemma:  If Europe's leaders must choose between chaotic collapse or an unsavory financial rescue, in the end they'll go for the bailouts even if their citizenry is outraged.  Just like here.

Happy Days:  The alleged recovery has improved housing so much that Freddie Mac lost only $6.7 billion in the first quarter and will tap the Treasury for only another $10.6 billion to keep up the good work.

Registry:  Just in time for the June weddings, the CIA has received White House approval to step up Predator drone strikes in Pakistan's tribal regions.  RSVP.

If But Then Else:   A lot of the better living things we've gotten through chemistry are killing us.  The legal presumption is that whatever a business wants to do is perfectly fine until someone can prove otherwise through several layers of regulatory hearings and appellate review.  A careful review suggests that some of that health nut stuff might be right after all.

Do-Over:  The Nasdaq OMX Group will cancel stock trades that were made at more than +/- 60% of their price just before the bottom fell out.  Wouldn’t want Goldman Sachs computerized wizardly to take a loss, would we?


Anonymous said...

RE: Do-Over

good one

Namke von Federlein said...


You made it onto the front page of my blog again today ("Did You Know" section) with the NYT article about the 80,000 dangerous chemicals.

As any chemist knows : to say that the chemicals are safe it would be necessary to test all possible combinations of them under a variety of conditions over an extended time frame.

Mathematically, the universe would probably collapse before the testing got done.

For years, I've said that the only realistic strategy is to reduce the number of chemicals.

Thanks for the great info!

Namke von Federlein

Dink said...

"The alleged recovery has improved housing so much that Freddie Mac lost only $6.7 billion in the first quarter"

BUY BUY BUY!!! Before you get priced out of the market!!!

Anonymous said...


Goldman Sacks US
Sacred, divine endeavor,
Sleight of Hand of God.

Those familiar with Nassim Taleb will know that his main investment strategy is to make bets way out of the money on the periphery. Well, if positioned properly, yesterday he would have made a fortune. Others, I would imagine, would be following his strategy. To have specifically devised such a strategy, executed it and then NOT GET PAID, well....Lawsuits on the way? (Lesson: don't bet on Too Many Oats, 100-1, at Hialeh.)

Anonymous said...

RE: Predator drones to 'rain' on Pakistani weddings.

If we could only 'short' the candidates on what they say vs. what they do after elected. A terrific rally that would make.

fajensen said...


The difference between an occupying force and a democratically elected government appears to be that while it is legitimate to take up arms against the former you just have to put up with it and then trade it in for another government exactly the same.