“Titan Capital Group LLC, whose flagship volatility fund rose 21.6 percent as stocks tumbled in May, has raised bets on extreme market moves because investors’ views on the economic outlook have polarized. The New York-based hedge fund, which manages about $400 million, has added “a lot more” cheap, out-of-the-money options, betting the market is underestimating the likelihood of a crash, founder Russell Abrams said in a phone interview. Treasuries, German government bonds and Japan’s yen are pricing in economic outcomes that are bleaker than the stock market expects, said the former co-head of U.S. equity derivative trading and convertible arbitrage at Merrill Lynch & Co.
Nassim Nicholas Taleb, whose book “The Black Swan” is about how unforeseen events can roil markets, said Aug. 11 he is “betting on the collapse of government bonds” and that investors should avoid stocks.”
“The world’s “best countries” seem to have this in common: they avoid war, they live in the dark, and they maintain a steady state of depressive and productive activity. No wonder, then, that we in the United States rank a pathetic No. 11. We are the only country in the world that has written “the pursuit of happiness” into its founding document, thus guaranteeing that we’ll never be satisfied. We are a geographically and socially diverse nation doomed by law and custom to optimism. We are not too healthy, are quite belligerent, and we borrow too much without thinking much about how we’ll pay it back. To achieve better metrics we’d need to tolerate a lot more (smorgas) boredom.”
“Republicans lead by 51% to 41% among registered voters in Gallup weekly tracking of 2010 congressional voting preferences.”
Go to the Gallup Poll for details: GOP Takes Unprecedented 10-Point Lead on Generic Ballot – Republicans also maintain wide gap in enthusiasm about voting.
Carmen and Victor Reinhart’s research paper: After The Fall (.pdf), places the recent economic and financial crisis in historical context. Abstract:
[via The Business Insider]
“The world’s number two deepwater-driller, Seadrill Ltd (SDRL.OL), reported earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) in the three months to the end of June rose to $493 million from $438 million a year earlier, beating the $471 million average estimate in a Reuters poll of analysts.
The offshore oil drilling sector has long been seen as ripe for consolidation. But the conditions created by the oil spill should accelerate deals, as it becomes tougher for smaller drillers to compete.
[image via Seadrill]
The V60, which started production today at the Torslanda plant near Volvo’s Gothenburg, Sweden, headquarters, features a sloping rear windscreen that gives it a sportier look compared to the carmaker’s V70 and V50 station wagons. Volvo will use the model to challenge BMW’s 3 Series Touring, Volkswagen AG’s Audi A4 Avant and Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz C-Class.”
Bloomberg discussed the plans with Volvo’s Tomas Ahlborg; Read the full interview here.
The Mongol Empire never got a firm hold of Europe in the 13th Century, and after Khan the Chinese never quite learned the art of conquering other parts of the world (unlike the European Merchants). I doubt that it is any easier today, especially with an auto industry already struggling in a sluggish market, americans subsidizing their brands and excellent German engineering occupying a substantial share of the targeted market. Why not consentrate on trying to excel in Asia first?
Got to hand it to Volvo, they did a great job losing that boxy look.
“The number of vacant houses in the U.S. is now about 2x the entire Canadian housing stock according to a new Moody’s report.”
[via Paul Kedrosky]
“In March Buffet claimed that money put into his flagship company, Berkshire Hathaway [BRK.A 118100.0 3667.00 (+3.2%) ] had returned an average of 20% in annualized gains over a 45-year period. He is the third richest man in the world with a net worth of $47 billion, according to Forbes. In 2006 he said he would give most of his fortune to charity.”
More from CNBC: As Warren Buffett Turns 80, A Look Back at His Life.
[Quote via MarketWatch]
“Lamborghini, which VW acquired 12 years ago, is one of nine brands in the Volkswagen Group — a stable that also includes economical VW and Skoda cars, upscale Audis and one-of-a-kind Bugattis with a price tag of well over $1 million. Lamborghini has sold more cars since the acquisition — 14,000 — than it did during all the previous 40 years, Mr. Winkelmann said. It even uses some VW parts, but not for more than 10 percent of any car and never anywhere they might be visible to owners.”
Adopting luxury brands may not be that profitable for shareholders if major markets; European and U.S, continue to decline – but great fun for enthusiasts if the result of the merger is improved technology and bargain prices. Read the story on New York Times: Can Porsche Shine at Volkswagen?
“Porsche must remain small and independent,” Mr. Porsche, who died in 1998, says as strings swell in the background and drums pound ominously. “No Porsche will ever be created by a committee, but by a handful of people inside these walls who know what a Porsche is.”
[image via Porche.com]
|30/08/2010||Solstad Offshore ASA||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|30/08/2010||Repant ASA||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|30/08/2010||Avinor AS||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|30/08/2010||Global Tender Barges ASA||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|30/08/2010||Bionor Pharma ASA||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|30/08/2010||AGR Group ASA||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|31/08/2010||Grenland Group ASA||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|31/08/2010||Marine Farms ASA||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|31/08/2010||Frontline Ltd.||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|31/08/2010||Seadrill Limited||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|31/08/2010||BW Offshore Limited||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|31/08/2010||Jinhui Shipping and Transportation Limit||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|31/08/2010||Petrolia Drilling ASA||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|31/08/2010||Color Group ASA||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
|31/08/2010||Morpol ASA||Results 2nd quarter 2010|
Upcoming Norwegian Earnings Highlights:
“Frontline Ltd. has established itself as the world leader in the international seaborne transportation of crude oil, with one of the world’s largest fleets of VLCC and Suezmax tankers, and Suezmax OBO carriers.” More here.
Frontline performance compared to Dow Jones:
Seadrill; OSE Quote:
This summer McKinsey & Co released a report focusing on growth in Africa. China is now emerging as the main foreign investor in the continents attractive recources, the result; collective GDP rising to 1.6 trillion USD in 2008 – roughly equal to Brazil’s or Russia’s.
“While Africa’s increased economic momentum is widely recognized, less known are its sources and likely staying power. Among the key points:
“The biggest business opportunity of the four lies in consumer goods and services, followed by natural resources, agriculture, and infrastructure.”
Definently time for the OECD countries to support this strong development by trading more with the region. How? Start by cutting tariffs and subsidies in the domestic agriculture sector. Navigate to the full report and details: Lions on the Move: The Progress and Potential of African Economies.
Read the executive summary (PDF – 1.76 MB)
Read the full report (PDF - 2.17 MB)
Download eBook as ePub for Apple iPad, Barnes & Noble Nook, Sony Reader and other devices
Download eBook for Amazon Kindle
Scott Grannis continues to stay optimistic after today’s downward revision to second quarter GDP:
“Regardless, it remains the case that profits have more than doubled since 1998, while the S&P 500 has not budged, on balance, over the past 12 years. As I’ve been arguing for a long time, the equity market looks very undervalued to me. Perhaps that’s because, like the bond market (see my post from yesterday), the equity market believes the future will be very grim.”
Read the rest of his thoughts: Corporate profits are very strong.
[via Calafia Beach Pundit]
“Meanwhile, of course, growth across the overall United States economy has been lackluster, slowing down significantly in recent quarters. And while companies may be sitting on mountains of profits, they have still been reluctant to use those profits to hire additional workers.”
Readers of The Wall Street Journal are not that confident:
“In Asia, sales jumped 21% to $111.5 million and would have been up 17% excluding currency translations, with the growth led by China, Hong Kong, Macau and Korea. Comparable-store sales rose 7%. The company added its fourth store in Singapore and 12th in China during the quarter.”
Quotes & story via MarketWatch here.
This economist is bullish on the market, go to the clip here.
[via Mark J. Perry]
“In return for publicly supporting the administration’s green agenda, General Electric ( GE - news - people ) is rewarded with a series of proposed rules tilting regulations to favor key technologies it controls or has a strong position in.
The administration throws out hundreds of years of contract law and takes a large portion of General Motors from secured creditors and hands it to the United Auto Workers union. Nearly simultaneously, Congress and the administration bring their full power to bear trying to damage the reputation of Toyota ( TM -news - people ), GM’s largest foreign competitor.
While their only hope of financial recovery lies with their strong position in trucks and SUVs, GM proves its loyalty to the administration by backing misguided (and unreachable) fuel economy standards and going all-in on the money-losing Volt electric vehicle program.
Like Europe, the ultimate price for the growing corporate state will be paid by the American consumer (in the form of higher prices, reduced choice, and foregone innovation), and the American taxpayer, who is already facing an enormous bill from the direct subsidy of favored constituents. This corporate-government-labor coalition is ready to come together in the U.S. right now, and only the political energy of the rest of the American citizenry continues to resist it.”