60 Minutes on the Explosion of Disability Enrollees

60 Minutes this past Sunday did a piece on a story that has been talked about in these pages for a long time – the rapid increase in disability enrollment since the recession half a decade ago.  It is quite remarkable that effectively 5% of the working population is now enrolled. [Apr 7, 2011: Nearly 1 in 20 Working Age Americans Are on Disability, a Doubling Versus 1990]  [Dec…

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WSJ's Hilsenrath on Janet Yellen

With the demise of Larry Summers, all eyes point to Janet Yellen as the next Federal Reserve head.  Frankly it is a bit surprising she was not the leading candidate all along.   Earlier this year, we posted a NY Times piece on the woman [Apr 25, 2013: NY Times Does Janet Yellen] from a more personal level and now we have one on the Fed whisperer himself, Jon Hilsenrath…

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The Most Overbought Point in 2013

Quite an explosive rally yesterday at the 2 PM mark, in fact about 70% of yesterday's gains came in a minute or so per Bespoke Investment; the power of algos.   Obviously the Fed, by surprising just about everyone with "no taper at all", lit another fire under the market but coming off a near vertical rally since late August it is still a bit surprising to see the…

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Launch of Paladin Long Short Fund (PALFX)

Hanna Capital is proud to announce the launch of its flagship fund, the Paladin Long Short Fund (PALFX).  Available through a variety of brokers as well as direct purchase, this no-load fund seeks capital appreciation.  See the fund's prospectus here. Distributor: Capital Investment Group, Inc., Member FINRA/SIPC , 17 Glenwood Ave, Raleigh, NC 27603, (800) 773-3863.  There is no affiliation between Hanna Capital LLC, including its principals, and Capital Investment Group, Inc….

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Mar15

There has been a lot of talk since Tuesday afternoon of the "great bond selloff"…  this started post FOMC meeting and supposedly was due to the Fed's "upgrade" of the economy in the statement.  The same upgrade that will do little to stop them from continuing a new round of easing once Operation Twist is over.  But it has a bunch of people in a huff.  

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Mar14

There was weakness again in the Russell 2000 (-0.9%) as that index gave back a good portion of yesterday's move, but barely a blip in the senior indexes (S&P 500, NASDAQ).  These both closed above the upper Bollinger band for a second day; talk about massive strength.  Until the monster that is Apple (AAPL) weakens these indexes simply don't seem to budge.  

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Mar14

If interested there is a massive story on the Fed's Ben Bernanke in The Atlantic – looks like it will be the cover story based on length.  The article salutes Bernanke in many ways, although ironically it is titled "The Villain".  It is far too early to judge Bernanke – about this time 12 years ago Greenspan was considered possibly the smartest human on the planet – he created a wonderful stock market, essentially defeated the economic cycle (remember the "great moderation"?) and within 5 years would also help stoke the flames of a housing bubble.  All with easy money.

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Mar14

Goldman Sachs (GS) obviously has lost a lot of allure and cache on Main Street the past few years.  In terms of "inside baseball", almost every month I read a Bloomberg story on how it has done secret (or not so secret) deals that "ripped" off a local municipality or special interest group or heck… country (i.e. a secret deal with Greece quite a few years ago that blew up).  Here is one on the energy market in Texas, which was deregulated – supposedly to increase competition, but instead prices went up – with Goldman in the background.  This is the stuff that boils the blood and makes you wonder where the regulators are?   Free markets? Laughable.

Some of the details of these deals are amazing, but incredibly lucrative.  They seem to always take advantage of the relative lack of financial acumen of the other party.  If you put a city board stacked with local politicians against Goldman's team of financial juggernauts  - you know one of the two is going to get fleeced, and it's not going to be the guys who live and breathe money.  This speaks to many who consider finance as a whole a leach on society (or as some have called Goldman – a vampire squid), even though it's really a few (mega) actors who do these sort of things.

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Mar14

Oh these analysts… where were they 2 weeks ago, or 5?

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