Economics, Global Markets and Finance

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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby BostonSucksMyBalls » 09 May 2017, 13:58

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PS: I will never like July 27th. It will always be the day Reggie died. I just hate this day. True Celtic fans know what I mean.

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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby chrisco » 15 May 2017, 08:55

This is how you mogul:

http://www.foxbusiness.com/features/201 ... -at-t.html

He sold ATT a VOIP company at the start of the century for $1.1 billion bucks. It was the hot new technology and ATT needed to get into the game. They got in too soon and paid too much. They ended up turning around and selling it back to him for pennies on the dollar. He took that money and plowed it into a bunch of investments, including the carcass of a particularly fantastic explosion called Winstar. One of the Winstar assets they bought was some shitty spectrum licenses that no one wanted until recently.

Verizon just paid him $3 billion bucks for it.

His main company is called IDT based out of NJ. Dealing with them is sort of like dealing with Danny Ainge. You are going to get fucked, but you don't know how, so its best to just steer clear of them as much as possible. Lot of crazy stories about that place, most dealing with his family and their tight knit crew of sycophants.

Hard to say how much is skill and how much is luck, but you need both to score like this.
BostonSucksMyBalls - Fri Apr 07, 2017 9:03 am: I listen bc ive listened for about 25 years. I need to see this stupid thing thru.
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby TVF wannabe » 15 May 2017, 11:37

Howard Jonas was a big name 10-15 years ago, I haven't heard much about him recently. I've heard from people that he's an interesting cat, his car and office are old and beat up and he does things his way but his way has worked with some ups and downs.
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby Briandong79 » 24 May 2017, 10:52

I had seen this other places but this is the first time I've seen it nationally. It completely blows my mind.

Iowa is a small state that happens to have a "$12 million man."

Actually, we don’t know if this patient is male or female, but we do know that Wellmark has a customer with a rare genetic disorder who requires care that costs $1 million dollars a month. That was the estimate from Wellmark in 2016.

That year, Wellmark hiked premiums by about 40 percent. A company executive told the Des Moines Register that a quarter of the increase was due solely to paying for that one person.

Why would one person make such a big difference?

Because Iowa’s insurance exchange is very small -- only about 72,000 individual plans. That’s a very narrow a base to spread out the outlays for one patient.

"Everyone is trying to avoid the $12 million man," said Duke University research associate David Anderson. "Because whoever catches him basically can’t make money."

Wellmark covers this patient now. When the company leaves the exchange, whatever companies remain run a chance of picking up this person’s coverage. Remember, no one can be denied for a pre-existing condition. If there’s just one insurer, the probability goes to 100 percent.

We asked individual market expert Barb Klever at the American Academy of Actuaries if one person could scare off insurers in Iowa.

"Oh yes," she said. "It is a very big risk, especially for a small insurance company."


1 person. 1! Is having that much of an impact on our insurance markets here. It's crazy.
PhillyJim76 - Tue Nov 22, 2016 9:20 am: X?I wrote a disturbing clueless fan fiction story that got me in hot water in college
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby the cheese » 24 May 2017, 10:55

Briandong79 wrote:I had seen this other places but this is the first time I've seen it nationally. It completely blows my mind.

Iowa is a small state that happens to have a "$12 million man."

Actually, we don’t know if this patient is male or female, but we do know that Wellmark has a customer with a rare genetic disorder who requires care that costs $1 million dollars a month. That was the estimate from Wellmark in 2016.

That year, Wellmark hiked premiums by about 40 percent. A company executive told the Des Moines Register that a quarter of the increase was due solely to paying for that one person.

Why would one person make such a big difference?

Because Iowa’s insurance exchange is very small -- only about 72,000 individual plans. That’s a very narrow a base to spread out the outlays for one patient.

"Everyone is trying to avoid the $12 million man," said Duke University research associate David Anderson. "Because whoever catches him basically can’t make money."

Wellmark covers this patient now. When the company leaves the exchange, whatever companies remain run a chance of picking up this person’s coverage. Remember, no one can be denied for a pre-existing condition. If there’s just one insurer, the probability goes to 100 percent.

We asked individual market expert Barb Klever at the American Academy of Actuaries if one person could scare off insurers in Iowa.

"Oh yes," she said. "It is a very big risk, especially for a small insurance company."


1 person. 1! Is having that much of an impact on our insurance markets here. It's crazy.


Medicare for all.
Clayton Bigsby - Wed May 23, 2012 2:55 pm: i'd rather live with a guy who's kind of annoying but a nice guy than a guy who's kind of annoying and a dick
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby chrisco » 21 Jun 2017, 07:57

Kalanick out at Uber:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business ... 92fc70f157

Some bullets:

- What a time to be an investor. They are taking out CEOs left right and center with a fraction of the ownership needed to do it.
- Uber clearly needed outside money to go, but taking money means you are going to answer to someone.
- Travis had this coming. Being an asshole of galactic proportions only works when you are winning galactically.
- Kudos to the board for not letting a crisis go to waste. Did Theranos serve as a lesson case or had they just seen enough?
- The ratio of open exec positions to market cap has to be a record setter. No CEO, CFO, COO, President, etc...
- There's still no moat around this service despite losing 700 million a quarter. Way too much money has gone into a commodified business.
- \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/
BostonSucksMyBalls - Fri Apr 07, 2017 9:03 am: I listen bc ive listened for about 25 years. I need to see this stupid thing thru.
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby Dr Jeckyll » 21 Jun 2017, 09:01

chrisco wrote:Kalanick out at Uber:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business ... 92fc70f157

Some bullets:

- What a time to be an investor. They are taking out CEOs left right and center with a fraction of the ownership needed to do it.
- Uber clearly needed outside money to go, but taking money means you are going to answer to someone.
- Travis had this coming. Being an asshole of galactic proportions only works when you are winning galactically.
- Kudos to the board for not letting a crisis go to waste. Did Theranos serve as a lesson case or had they just seen enough?
- The ratio of open exec positions to market cap has to be a record setter. No CEO, CFO, COO, President, etc...
- There's still no moat around this service despite losing 700 million a quarter. Way too much money has gone into a commodified business.
- \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/


sco: thoughts on the future? i use uber frequently.
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby chrisco » 21 Jun 2017, 10:11

Dr Jeckyll wrote:
chrisco wrote:Kalanick out at Uber:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business ... 92fc70f157

Some bullets:

- What a time to be an investor. They are taking out CEOs left right and center with a fraction of the ownership needed to do it.
- Uber clearly needed outside money to go, but taking money means you are going to answer to someone.
- Travis had this coming. Being an asshole of galactic proportions only works when you are winning galactically.
- Kudos to the board for not letting a crisis go to waste. Did Theranos serve as a lesson case or had they just seen enough?
- The ratio of open exec positions to market cap has to be a record setter. No CEO, CFO, COO, President, etc...
- There's still no moat around this service despite losing 700 million a quarter. Way too much money has gone into a commodified business.
- \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/ \:D/


sco: thoughts on the future? i use uber frequently.


Thoughts? Sure I have thoughts, as always the future is very unpredictable and YMMV.

1. To understand what will happen with Uber, its important to remember how much late money came into this company from very large institutional investors. I don't think those guys will finish in the money. If Uber is faced with the choice having to raise a down round or gutting itself in order to become immediately profitable, look for the latter to happen. The first thing out the window will be its troubled driverless car program. The next thing out the window will be its ambitions for global domination. The real thing that will have an impact is cutting the subsidies they are placing on rides right now.

Uber could be instantly profitable if it does this.

The alternative will be a merger. Look at what happened with Draft Kings / Fan Duel for an analog. They are a great example of trying to consolidate once you realize the true size of your market. (Fun fact, the FTC or DOJ just announced they are blocking that merger. Eat shit daily fantasy sports investors.)

2. To realize why Uber raised that much money and is spending like it does, you need to look at this strain of thought which was very popular 24-48 months ago: http://www.newyorker.com/tech/elements/ ... -takes-all.

While this thesis is true for many online services and it appears to be the case for retail, its not going to happen with Uber. The critical miscalculation here is around the strength of the drivers in the ecosystem.

Uber has always treated their drivers like shit and expected to replace them with driverless cars in the near future. Driverless cars are going to be further out than people realize. While we've solved 85-90% of the problems, the remaining issues are very difficult and may need wholesale changes in our underlying infrastructure to work. You'll see driverless long haul trucking on interstates 7-10 years before the deployment of large scale driverless ride sharing.

Uber calculated that they could buy market share, achieve massive network efficiencies by increasing driver utilization (having no dead time between rides), and then replace all drivers with robots. Their entire burn trajectory was built around walking that high wire in a relatively short period of time. Its an all or nothing play that required a huge war chest.

3. Culture is what caused Uber to fail. While they are getting killed for their internal culture, their biggest misfires have been with the treatment of drivers and a change in consumer expectations about brands.

Drivers are independent business owners. In NYC and other major metros, the driver pool is also disproportionately professional drivers whose primary income is thru ride sharing. They hold a ton of power in those markets and if you treat them like shit, then you open the door to competition. My Lyft experience is 4x better today than when I started using it 2 years ago because of the increase in the driver pool. All drivers in NYC run 3-4 ride sharing apps on their phone, and will use whichever can provide them with the highest hourly earnings.

I saw the CEO of Juno (recently bought by Gett to now be the number 3 player in NYC) give a speech which pretty much echoed how PonziCo entered the independent retail market. This was their ethos: https://www.forbes.com/sites/briansolom ... c4b3e848ee.

Independent businesses/drivers want to carry more than one product/service. They'll have a number 1 that gets 50-75% of their business, a number 2 which does the bulk of the rest, and then a third that they are either trying or has a promo running which they are exploiting. You hang around long enough as the number 3, build up a good rep and allow them to move units, then you can flip those drivers to you.

In short, there is no moat around the Uber business because drivers have more power than Uber thought they did and others saw that.

On the consumer side, the polarization of American politics and the rise of SJW culture has inadvertently brought brands into the crossfire. Brands are now often expected to take sides that match their users views, and silence can lead to a distortion of your brand (especially when it has an evil rep to begin with). Uber got unfairly targeted during the Trump travel ban and that turned sentiment against them in a mainstream way. After that they continued to shoot themselves in the foot and opened the door for the "friendly" rival Lyft to become the default choice for riders who want an ethical high ground from their consumer service providers.

So what happens in the future....

- Ride sharing is a regional play with 2-3 players in each market globally. You can see this in Asia now where Uber is not winning and locals are.
- In the US, that will be Uber, Lyft, and some RC Cola always trying to crash the party.
- Uber will pay out for early investors, but late ones will want it off their books. This will cause Uber to refocus as a consumer service and not as a technology and logistics company.
- Uber will bring in a two headed monster to run their business. One person will be a tech/logistics wiz and the other will focus very strongly on the driver and rider communities as well as brand and experience.
- This will be taught as a business case in schools. Musk's and Zuck's are few and far between. Kalanick was not one of them, but he took that attitude to an extreme. If enough Uber investors end out of the money, this won't happen again....until it does.
BostonSucksMyBalls - Fri Apr 07, 2017 9:03 am: I listen bc ive listened for about 25 years. I need to see this stupid thing thru.
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby chrisco » 29 Jun 2017, 10:03

Cheese - THE WSJ sez that Keystone XL is having a hard time drumming up commercial interest in its much maligned pipeline for purely commercial reasons. Thoughts?

https://www.wsj.com/articles/after-3-bi ... 1498734002
BostonSucksMyBalls - Fri Apr 07, 2017 9:03 am: I listen bc ive listened for about 25 years. I need to see this stupid thing thru.
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby the cheese » 29 Jun 2017, 10:10

chrisco wrote:Cheese - THE WSJ sez that Keystone XL is having a hard time drumming up commercial interest in its much maligned pipeline for purely commercial reasons. Thoughts?

https://www.wsj.com/articles/after-3-bi ... 1498734002


Keystone XL exists to move the output of the single most expensive oil play in the world - the Canadian tar sands - to Houston for global export. Shockingly, and I think I was on record saying this somewhere in this thread or elsewhere, the Keystone XL was a dumb fucking idea at the time and it's a dumb fucking idea now.

The tar sands are an extremely technologically difficult play to exploit, then you have to move them to refineries. The Canadians are too smart to put refining capacity in Vancouver, where it would make the most sense to export the shit to China, who is the only market for the stuff. They are economically viable at $100 a barrel. The Bakken is an $85 a barrel play. Oil by train, as hazardous as it is, is a better logistical solution to moving oil when you are operating in a fringe play.

You aren't going to see a lot of new shale exploration right now, although there is some cautious leasing going on. The STACK and SCOOP plays in Oklahoma and the Eagle Ford in Texas are going to be very popular right now. The herd got thinned a lot in the last three years, and the people that are still in the business are a lot smarter and a lot more conservative than the idiots that were leasing dry gas plays for $10,000 an acre. Surprisingly Chesapeake Energy survived without declaring bankruptcy.
Clayton Bigsby - Wed May 23, 2012 2:55 pm: i'd rather live with a guy who's kind of annoying but a nice guy than a guy who's kind of annoying and a dick
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby chrisco » 29 Jun 2017, 10:13

the cheese wrote:
chrisco wrote:Cheese - THE WSJ sez that Keystone XL is having a hard time drumming up commercial interest in its much maligned pipeline for purely commercial reasons. Thoughts?

https://www.wsj.com/articles/after-3-bi ... 1498734002


Keystone XL exists to move the output of the single most expensive oil play in the world - the Canadian tar sands - to Houston for global export. Shockingly, and I think I was on record saying this somewhere in this thread or elsewhere, the Keystone XL was a dumb fucking idea at the time and it's a dumb fucking idea now.

The tar sands are an extremely technologically difficult play to exploit, then you have to move them to refineries. The Canadians are too smart to put refining capacity in Vancouver, where it would make the most sense to export the shit to China, who is the only market for the stuff. They are economically viable at $100 a barrel. The Bakken is an $85 a barrel play. Oil by train, as hazardous as it is, is a better logistical solution to moving oil when you are operating in a fringe play.

You aren't going to see a lot of new shale exploration right now, although there is some cautious leasing going on. The STACK and SCOOP plays in Oklahoma and the Eagle Ford in Texas are going to be very popular right now. The herd got thinned a lot in the last three years, and the people that are still in the business are a lot smarter and a lot more conservative than the idiots that were leasing dry gas plays for $10,000 an acre. Surprisingly Chesapeake Energy survived without declaring bankruptcy.

The Canadians are too smart to put refining capacity in Vancouver, where it would make the most sense to export the shit to China, who is the only market for the stuff.


Elaborate or add a sarcasm font. TYIA.
BostonSucksMyBalls - Fri Apr 07, 2017 9:03 am: I listen bc ive listened for about 25 years. I need to see this stupid thing thru.
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby the cheese » 29 Jun 2017, 10:20

Vancouver / British Columbia is the closes deep water port to Alberta. The logical thing to do for Canada would be to build a pipleine to Vancouver and refine the oil there. But because the Canadians as a people aren't simple-minded morons who only think with their dicks and their wallets they haven't built a series of giant pollution factories right on their coastline to serve something that isn't profitable except at record oil prices. I'd imagine that outside of Alberta nobody in Canada actually wants the oil sands to be successful, and cutting them out of Vancouver is a means to that end.

That, and TransCanada was pretty right that America would sign right up to put a pipeline built with Chinese steel across their biggest aquifer and a bunch of delicate to move Canadian oil for export to China. They just overestimated long-term prices.

Canadians are smart. Canadians in the oil business, like all people in the oil business, are stupid.
Clayton Bigsby - Wed May 23, 2012 2:55 pm: i'd rather live with a guy who's kind of annoying but a nice guy than a guy who's kind of annoying and a dick
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby BigJohnStudd » 29 Jun 2017, 14:16

the cheese wrote:... across their biggest aquifer...


I honestly feel like this was the appeal for a lot of these sociopaths. Because polluting all the water would be a big eff-you to Al Gore or Jane Fonda or something.

Thank you for the informative post, cheese. (No sarcasm font.)
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby chrisco » 02 Aug 2017, 09:21

Bix - What are you and the rest of the Swiss going to do with all this money?

https://www.wsj.com/articles/switzerlan ... 1501666483

Thanks to its efforts to weaken the franc, the Swiss central bank has amassed $750 billion in stocks, bonds and cash.

That has provoked a lively debate in Switzerland: What should the country do with all of that? And whose money is it, anyway?

For now, the Swiss National Bank holds on to it, and invests it around the world—but not in Switzerland. It held $2.7 billion in Apple Inc. stock, for instance, at the end of March. Some lawmakers and many economists think a sovereign-wealth fund created outside the SNB should invest a chunk at home.


The SNB’s profit last year was 24.5 billion francs ($25.4 billion), or about $3,000 per Swiss resident.


Have you considered purchasing #TPT and the Canucks with it?
BostonSucksMyBalls - Fri Apr 07, 2017 9:03 am: I listen bc ive listened for about 25 years. I need to see this stupid thing thru.
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Re: Economics, Global Markets and Finance

Postby Clayton Bigsby » 02 Aug 2017, 15:52

chrisco wrote:Bix - What are you and the rest of the Swiss going to do with all this money?

https://www.wsj.com/articles/switzerlan ... 1501666483



Oh, I don't know. Throw it on the pile, I suppose.
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