Massive Weekend Linkfest

What happened to Autumn? It seems we went straight to Winter from Summer. Anyway, turn down the thermostats, put on a heavy sweater and put up a mug of hot cocoa, get ready to turn those clocks back — you have one hour less more this weekend to enjoy these — here’s a look at some items worth perusing:

Barron’s Alan Abelson notes that over two-thirds of the industrial bond market merits junk status – compared to only 3% in 1980. (If no Barron’s sub, then go here).

• My pal James Altucher will eventually be correct about deflation — but prolly not until late 06/early-07; Meanwhile, you best understand The Unpleasant Truth About Inflation.

Construction materials are yet another category of goods going up in price: Gypsum, asphalt, insulation, lumber, steel and copper products, PVC plastic, concrete. And that’s before you factor in the 50 percent surge in Diesel prices;

• The Apprenticed Investor continues this week with advice on not getting killed in a "fiasco" stocks: Protect Your Backside;

• Jon Markman thinks the Indictments were what roiled the markets: I’m less certain;

• What I find intriguing about the whole sordid Plamegate affair isn’t the alleged INTEL failure — it was the total breakdown of Strategic planning;

• Here’s a question for Real Estate Buyers: Why are you still paying 6% commissions?

• The Economist asks:  What’s to stop India and China?

• The WSJ reviews the Greenspan Era. Be sure to read the pre- and post- 1987 crash WSJ columns (If no WSJ sub, go here);

Is the US becoming hostile to science?

"Meltdown. It’s one of those annoying “buzzwords." We prefer to call it an unrequested fission surplus."  So too, with Bernanke’s so-called Savings Glut semantics.

• A clever promotional idea from Bank of America: Keep the Change; (I wonder how long it will take for someone to figure out how to abuse it?)

My Bad:  The morning of the Bernanke nomination, I told CNN he was more John Roberts than Harriet Miers.  I thought that was clever — until it bounced through the MSM reflection chamber, turning into an instant cliche . . . My humble apologies for the whole foolish phrase.

• Wharton Prof Jeremy Siegel thinks High Gas Prices may be a Blessing in Disguise

• We have talked about the strain middle and low income consumers are under due to high fuel costs; But did you know that the Wealthiest are under an increasing financial strain? (There are some caveats to this);

• The closest gets less crowded: Mr. Sulu is Gay; So too, is WNBA MVP Sheryl Swoopes;

Dilbert is blogging!

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  1. Mike commented on Oct 30

    Great links this weekend! Remember your “Mr. Housing Bubble Shirts?” I was surfing around the Internet today and found Bird Flu shirts! What else are they going to come up with? Check it out here…

  2. nate commented on Oct 31

    I read Barron’s on-line via Factiva. It is not quite the same experience as hard-copy- I missed Abelson’s note on junk bond and relative mix of corporate bond ratings these days. I think this fits with your previous blog postings on the distribution of lots of cash in corporations – it is concentrated in a few corporations and not broad based?

    What are your thoughts on closed end funds?

    Also, what do you think of Budweiser? Cosmopolitan or beer?

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