Blog

Well, the elections are over and we can now watch attorney ads instead of nasty political ads. In general, the election went as we predicted. The Republicans have taken the largest house majority since WWII and now have the Senate. The question is what does this mean? There are two options: the GOP assumes a leadership role and tries to pass legislation (that the president will sign); or continues obstructionist roles. If the obstructionist strategy continues, we will have more brinksmanship and battles. On the other hand, if we get cooperation, a variety of things could happen. A possible outcome is...
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Unless you’ve been on a beach without cell phone service (in which case, I envy you), the market is exhibiting a vast amount of volatility and uncertainty.  In today’s world, we can find explanations for everything.  Amongst those is how the drop in oil prices and strong dollar are hurting the market, or that Europe is slowing (I hate to tell Europe, but they have been slow).  We see the glass half-full, and not half-empty.  Here’s why: Oil.  Oil prices have “tanked” (down over 20%), which is bad for oil companies and good for everyone else (OK, it’s bad for ISIS,...
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What Goes Up
LJPR 10-10-2014 11:46
What goes up…must come down…and up…and downOctober of 2014 has been an interesting month so far, just in the first seven trading days.  In seven days, the Dow Jones 30 industrials have moved (up and down) over 1,300 points.  That is significant volatility, especially since the movement tends to oscillate, in an ugly fashion reminiscent of early 2009.  I can’t help but wonder why.  Market movements are of course related to human behavior:  Mr. Market (as Warren Buffet calls the market), can’t make up his mind if he’s bullish or bearish.  Lately, it’s almost an even bounce:  down 270, up...
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It’s Buy Michigan Week (July 28th through August 3rd), so I’m making my contribution. I’m a Michigan homeboy: I was born in Detroit, grew up in Hazel Park, went to college and law school in Detroit; spend summers in Eastport, hunt in West Branch and kayak any stretch of open water I can find without too many lake freighters. I’ve viewed Michigan as a state of opportunity, and a state where businesses large and small can thrive. Michiganders are survivors: we survive fierce winters, and fierce recessions.In 2009, I viewed Michigan as an emerging market. We had two of the...
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Breakfast Indicator
LJPR 06-25-2014 09:30
In the information age of today, there are myriad indicators for the economy ranging from the employment numbers to the men’s underwear indicator. They wouldn’t exist if they didn’t have some merit but none tell the full story. So, why not add one more? I propose the “Breakfast Indicator”, which is currently anecdotal, though testing will commence soon. If fast-food restaurants have lines waiting for breakfast, the economy is improving or doing well. Fast-food companies expanding to offer menus including breakfast clearly see opportunities, implying people are buying more breakfast, furthering the claim. Why does this indicate a strengthening (strong)...
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Fire in the Hole: Lesson LearnedI dodged a potential big loss last month.  Anne, my wife, and I have a nice house and a very nice kitchen.  Anne is a gourmet chef, so we have really good (and expensive) appliances.  One fateful morning one of our appliances went rogue.  The control panel in the stove shorted out and the stove burst into flames.  Once a month we have cleaning ladies come in and, luckily for us, they were at the house and they're tough.  One hit the circuit breaker and the other called 911 and ran across the street to get...
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