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EU Farming Subsidies for the Royal Family Must Stay Secret

Filed in Bank Gold, Gold Spot Market, o, ubs by on February 20, 2011 0 Comments

‘Ministers have ordered an information blackout on the massive farming subsidies paid to the Queen, Prince Charles and dozens of other wealthy landowners. Payouts, which in past years have amounted to £500,000 to the Queen and more than £100,000 t…

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Urban Magnets for Disaster

Filed in BP, deflation, economy, Ford, Gold, inflation, o, silver, ubs, US Dollar by on February 18, 2011 0 Comments

When it comes to bad stuff the sky’s the limit. It’s gonna happen, eventually…one way or another. And it could be real bad. And when bad stuff happens, you’re better off being somewhere else. Where? Generally, bad stuff seems to happen most often in cities. Why is that? Cities are where most people live. It is where governments are. And it is where the labor force is most specialized. There are no subsistence farmers living in cities. Nor do urban populations “live off the land.” Instead, they depend on complex networks of commerce. The typical city dweller produces neither food nor energy. He sits all day in an office — completely dependent on others to provide power and food. Then, he goes home — still completely dependent on the division of labor for his most important needs. Progress can be described as the elaboration of the division of labor. In man’s most primitive state, specialization is extremely limited. From what we’ve been told, the early man was the hunter. Early woman gathered…that’s about the extent of it. As the tribe grows larger, specialization increases. One person might tend the fire. Another might be in charge of making clothes or arrows. The advent of sedentary agriculture and towns caused a big leap forward in human progress and, not coincidentally, the division of labor. Some townspeople went out to tend the fields. Others began to focus on woodworking…or iron mongering…or making weapons…or clothes. Some played cards and hung around at bars. There was soon a homebuilding industry…and, not long after, merchants, prostitutes and bankers…and even shyster lawyers and tax collectors. As the division of labor expanded, the average person became richer…and more dependent on others. In order to eat, someone else had to plant…and till…and harvest…and hunt…and gather. And then, when agriculture became mechanized, he depended on faraway people who produced oil and gasoline…and people who built …

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Gold, Silver, Copper, Nickel and the Slow Death of Money

Gold, Silver, Copper, Nickel and the Slow Death of Money

A huge opportunity to hedge against both inflation and deflation is lying out there in the open. There are no transaction costs and right now there’s even a built-in discount. But most people will never realize any of this. In 1933 President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed Executive Order 6102, which made it illegal for U.S. citizens to hold gold bullion. Prior to that, the $20 bill was essentially a warehouse receipt for a one-ounce gold coin. Prior to the Federal Reserve Act of 1914, the $20 bill actually told you this. After Executive Order 6102, $20 notes weren’t allowed to be exchanged for gold anymore. Americans couldn’t legally own or trade gold as money and savings, only as jewelry or collectible coins. A year after making monetary gold ownership illegal, FDR revalued gold from $20.67 per ounce to $35 an ounce with the Gold Reserve Act. The Act also required all gold and gold certificates to be turned over to the Treasury. The dollar was debased. A chunk of the gold it used to be good for was legally removed. Instead of  “containing” 1/20 an ounce of gold, each dollar now only contained (or represented) 1/35 an ounce. And of course you couldn’t actually own the gold itself. In 1971 Nixon severed the last official ties between gold and the dollar. The dollar quickly sunk to its real value, which had been debased by years of money supply inflation. By 1975 Americans were allowed to own bullion gold again, but during the roughly 40 years bullion gold ownership had been illegal, the dollar had been drastically debased. At its former lowest point in the summer of 1980, the dollar …

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FedEx (FDX): Still Set to Deliver?

Filed in Bank Gold, EPS, euro, Guidance, o, ubs by on February 16, 2011 0 Comments
FedEx (FDX): Still Set to Deliver?

Filed under: Newsletters , FedEx Corp (FDX) , Stocks to Buy “It’s not too often that a company lowers its guidance and the stock rises, but such is the case with FedEx ( FDX ),” says Geoffrey Seiler . The editor of BullMarket .com explains, “The company cut its fiscal Q3 guidance; but given the terrible weather, which impacted a number of airports across the U.S. and Europe, and higher fuel costs, it was largely expected. “The package delivery firm now expects to produce adjusted EPS of 70-90 cents, down from prior guidance of 95 cents to $1.15. Analysts were expecting EPS of $1.04 for the quarter. Continue reading FedEx (FDX): Still Set to Deliver? FedEx (FDX): Still Set to Deliver? originally appeared on BloggingStocks on Wed, 16 Feb 2011 10:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Tech Expert Eyes QuickLogic (QUIK)

Filed in Bank Gold, Guidance, Lear, o, revenue, shares, ubs by on February 15, 2011 0 Comments
Tech Expert Eyes QuickLogic (QUIK)

Filed under: Newsletters , Stocks to Buy “QuickLogic ( QUIK ) recently reported fourth quarter revenue slightly below its revised guidance, and forecast that Q1 new product revenue would be down roughly $100K,” notes tech sector specialist Paul McWilliams . In his Next Inning newsletter, he explains, “Both are clearly disappointing pieces of news. However, as I see it, the disappointment ends there, and I continue to own these shares. “The semiconductor company makes products that enable customers to add new features, extend battery life and enhance images on mobile and consumer products. Continue reading Tech Expert Eyes QuickLogic (QUIK) Tech Expert Eyes QuickLogic (QUIK) originally appeared on BloggingStocks on Tue, 15 Feb 2011 10:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink | Email this | Comments

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The 10 Year $1.5 Trillion Tax Hike

Filed in AMAG, BP, dividend, Gold Market, o, obama, revenue, target, ubs, Uncategorized by on February 14, 2011 0 Comments

While our goal with this blog isn’t to bash the government, we do want to point out what’s likely to impact the markets, small businesses, and families across the country. The US government plays a substantial role in what happens on Wall Street… every single day. ————— The new Obama budget basically shoves a 10 year, $1.5 trillion tax hike down our throats. So much for that “No family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase” promise . As pointed out by Americans for Tax Reform, here’s what we can look forward to: “President Obama released his budget this morning. Rather than focusing on Washington’s over-spending problem, the budget calls for higher taxes on families and small businesses to pay for even more government spending. Under the Obama budget, tax revenues will grow from 14.4% of GDP in 2011 to 20% of GDP in 2021. By comparison, the historical average is only 18% of GDP. Tax hike lowlights include: Raising the top marginal income tax rate (at which a majority of small business profits face taxation) from 35% to 39.6%. This is a $709 billion/10 year tax hike Raising the capital gains and dividends rate from 15% to 20% Raising the death tax rate from 35% to 45% and lowering the death tax exemption amount from $5 million ($10 million for couples) to $3.5 million. This is a $98 billion/ten year tax hike Capping the value of itemized deductions at the 28% bracket rate. This will effectively cut tax deductions for mortgage interest, charitable contributions, property taxes, state and local income or sales taxes, out-of-pocket medical expenses, and unreimbursed employee business expenses. A new means-tested phaseout of itemized deductions limits them even more. This is a $321 billion/ten year tax hike New bank taxes totaling $33 billion over ten years New international corporate tax hikes totaling $129 billion over ten years New life insurance company taxes totaling $14 billion over ten years Massive new taxes on energy, including LIFO repeal, Superfund, domestic energy manufacturing, and many others totaling $120 billion over ten years Increasing unemployment payroll taxes by $15 billion over ten years Taxing management capital gains in an investment partnership (“carried interest”) as ordinary income. This is a tax hike of $15 billion over ten years A giveaway to the trial lawyers—not letting companies deduct the cost of punitive damages from a lawsuit settlement. This is a tax hike of $300 million over ten years Increasing tax penalties, information reporting, and IRS information sharing. This is a ten-year tax hike of $20 billion. You can read more here. The 10 Year $1.5 Trillion Tax Hike originally appeared in Wealth Daily . Wealth Daily is a free daily newsletter featuring contrarian investment insights and commentary.

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A Makeover for eBay

Filed in amazon-com, eBay, Lear, New Gold, o, South African Gold, Spot Gold, ubs by on February 11, 2011 0 Comments
A Makeover for eBay

Filed under: Management , Competitive Strategy , eBay (EBAY) We’ve oft heard the saying: “We must reinvent ourselves.” This is the new mantra at eBay. According to chief executive John Donahoe: “Clearly, I hope you see that we are starting to play offense.” EBay ( EBAY ) has long been a dominant player in the e-commerce industry. Started in 1995 , it has brought together buyers and sellers in an auction format. Now, 16 years later and highly successful, the company finds a new competitor in Amazon.com ( AMZN ), which is grabbing market share. In the meantime, eBay has acquired Paypal, as a wholly owned subsidiary. Paypal, an online payment service, helped to propel eBay’s business transactions. Continue reading A Makeover for eBay A Makeover for eBay originally appeared on BloggingStocks on Fri, 11 Feb 2011 12:15:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Corn Surges on Short Supply

Filed in AT T, Brazil, commodities, New Gold, o, South African Gold, ubs by on February 10, 2011 0 Comments
Corn Surges on Short Supply

Filed under: International Markets , China , Brazil , Market Matters , Economic Data , Commodities , Agriculture March corn futures jumped 24.25 cents a bushel on Wednesday to $6.98. Corn contracts have risen 97% since June. You may be wondering why all this activity in the corn market in the middle of winter. The answer lies in a USDA report that said corn supplies are dangerously low. In fact, they are near the record low set 15 years ago. What that means is that the corn stocks we have must last until our harvest starts in mid summer. Of the 12.4 billion bushels harvested last fall, we will have only 675 million bushels by Aug 31.To add more fuel to the problem, this new report is 9% lower than the USDA”s January projection, as reported in the Wall Street Journal (subscription required). Continue reading Corn Surges on Short Supply Corn Surges on Short Supply originally appeared on BloggingStocks on Thu, 10 Feb 2011 17:50:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Market Wrap-Up for Feb.8 (MCD, CL, AET, CLX, AVP, more)

The second interest rate hike in China in less than a month is being digested by Wall Street right now with a ho-hum reaction this morning. At some point the market will begin paying a bit more attention. With numerous M&A deals still being announced, and IPOs lining up on the runway, we’re not sure when the buying streak will begin to ease up, but we are carefully examining possible scenarios. Gold prices seem to be perking up today, as the last four months have been nothing but sideways action. At some point soon, we will see either a coiled spring effect and higher prices, or impatient investors heading for the exits. Elsewhere in the markets, shares of McDonald’s ( MCD ) got a nice boost from solid January sales. Colgate-Palmolive ( CL ) was also rallying on some takeover rumblings. Aetna ( AET ) and Clorox ( CLX ) had some decent buying following positive analyst comments. Avon Products ( AVP ) went in the opposite direction following lackluster earnings results. I was reading numerous accounts of AOL’s acquisition of the popular news site The Huffington Post yesterday. I tend to pay attention to what is happening in the web media space closely, as our firm is often grouped into that space, since “.com” is part of our brand. You have to question the uncanny love that is expressed for the deal, with the word “innovation” being tossed around in seemingly every other compliment. Sorry, but what is innovative about having 6000 contributors writing free content for your website, as Ms. Huffington managed to achieve? The company does only have 200 employees and can be described as lean and mean, but innovative? I’ve also seen a lot of insults leveled toward “old media” (newspapers, magazines) regarding their new goals of putting up so-called “pay walls” (which just means you charge users to access your content). If I were running the New York Times or any other major paper, I would’ve put some sort of pay wall up years ago. Why charge for a print version and give it away online for free! The lack of vision has costs thousands and thousands of jobs in the newspaper and magazine industries. Some people may say “who cares, it’s free now, I can get the same information anywhere on the web.” I don’t know about you, but reading articles created by content farms that pay writers $3 a post (if that) isn’t exactly very appealing. Unfortunately, that’s the direction that many online media plays are heading. I am not going to knock Arianna Huffington and her major payday, but at the end of the day, it wasn’t so much about innovation, as it …

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Microsoft (MSFT): ‘No Respect’

Filed in Bank Gold, Facebook, Microsoft, o, ubs by on February 7, 2011 0 Comments
Microsoft (MSFT): ‘No Respect’

Filed under: Microsoft (MSFT) , Newsletters , Stocks to Buy “Microsoft ( MSFT ) recently released its fiscal second-quarter results; we felt results were really quite strong, with solid gains in most segments and good cost discipline,” says Geoffrey Seiler . The editor of Bullmarket.com explains, “If these results were from another company, the stock likely would have gotten a lift. But Microsoft is the Rodney Dangerfield of companies: it doesn’t get the respect it deserves. “Microsoft reported net income of $6.63 billion, or 77 cents per share, compared with $6.66 billion, or 74 cents per share, in the year-ago period. Sales grew by 5% to $19.95 billion from $19.00 billion. Continue reading Microsoft (MSFT): ‘No Respect’ Microsoft (MSFT): ‘No Respect’ originally appeared on BloggingStocks on Mon, 07 Feb 2011 10:40:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Market Wrap-Up for Feb.4 (AET, WY, MA, K, SPG, AVB, more)

Talk about a confusing jobs number this morning! The estimates were for 150K new jobs, but instead the number came in at 36K. Yet the unemployment rate fell from 9.5% to 9%. Now I consider myself to be pretty good at math, but what formula was used to come up with these results? The market certainly didn’t have any trouble with the number as an afternoon rally pushed up to finish higher on the day. Aetna ( AET ) and Weyerhaeuser ( WY ) received some love from buyers following earnings results. Aetna also raised their dividend payout from $.05 to $.60 on an annualized basis. That’s certainly a bit more of respectable payout from this health insurance giant. Mastercard ( MA ) and Kellogg ( K ) continued to see upside from yesterday’s earnings results as well. On the downside today were REITs following results that failed to excite investors. Simon Property Group ( SPG ) and AvalonBay Communities ( AVB ) paced the way lower. Be sure to check out the list of 10 dividend stocks we removed from our recommended list if you did not read the e-mail alert that we sent out earlier. As I mentioned yesterday, I am just starting my preparation for national radio interviews for my upcoming Be a Dividend Millionaire book as well as discussions on dividend investing, and of course Dividend.com. Yesterday afternoon, I had my initial interview with my media team. The process is to identify key areas of discussion for my future interviews as well as pointers to make the interviews as captivating as possible. I’m not sure how long the interviews will be, so you need to have game plans to hit all your key points in whatever time is allotted. One of the people I was working with yesterday afternoon is a baby boomer who is worried about not having enough income built up for her retirement. What I did was point her to our Compounding Interest Calculator , and by the end of the call, she said I’d inspired her and given her hope! Think about this example: you are just about to turn 50 years old and have not yet saved a dime (it’s quite common – check out the data below that was just released by the Harris Poll just yesterday). Believe it or not, even at 50, you still…

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2011 Gold and Silver Predictions

2011 Gold and Silver Predictions

Gold prices are off to an expected pullback for the year. But this short-term dip won’t last long… After forming a triple top pattern at the very end of 2010, the price of gold has fallen nearly 5% to about $1,350 an ounce. Take a look: We may continue to see a bit of downward pressure on gold prices in the near term; but as economic problems continue to drive investors into safe-haven hard assets, the price of gold will be headed higher later this year. That means if you’ve been waiting for an opportunity to make a little money in gold, the market may be carving out a nice little spot to make some bullion purchases at a decent price to prepare for the next leg up. There are many who estimate gold will top the $1,500 level this year. But I think we’ll see gold make a heart-stopping race to $1,700 an ounce by the end of the summer. Silver is also going to be a big winner for us in 2011. The demand for silver as an investment has increased dramatically over the past several years as the retail market has become more accepting of silver as money and a store of wealth. And as gold prices approach $2,000 an ounce, I believe silver will be preferred by many — if not most — retail customers as a cheaper alternative that provides the level of wealth protection investors might be looking for. With that in mind, I think the price of silver will break $50 an ounce this year. Both gold and silver will be highly profitable for investors this year. But the real money will be made from the junior companies that explore for new resources and develop new projects to mine for these precious metals… Shares of junior gold and silver exploration companies can often skyrocket overnight — especially when they make new discoveries. And making new discoveries is their specialty… You’d think that the most talented precious metal prospectors work for the major gold companies like Barrick Gold (NYSE: ABX) and Newmont Mining (NYSE: NEM), but that isn’t the case. You see, the most talented mine finders stand to make a lot more money if they go out on their own. A top geologist with a major that makes a big discovery might get a sizable bonus and bigger …

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