Some week, huh? The Dow made a new high, and almost hit a new all time closing high, adding 170 points (1.5%) for the week. The S&P500
gained 21 (1.6%), while the Nasdaq added 39 (1.8%).
The rally has some internal issues, which we will discuss below. So far, the most fascinating aspect of it has been the response via the business channels. Fox has been breathless, Bloomberg circumspect, and CNBC somewhere in between (leaning more to the giddy side).
The last straw for me was James Glassman, the author of the Dow 36,000 book on CNBC, reiterating his "undervalued by 65%" theme. I didn’t even mute the TV — it went off for the rest of the day.
As an example of how absurd his statement was, I point you to the simple fact that since the last time I saw his schtick on TV in January 2000, the Dow has been handily outperformed by cash — and by 818 basis points.
Enough details — let’s get clicking:
• How various Dow Components have fared since January 2000
• We’re getting fairly bored with Amaranth, and so there will only be 3 such items this week (but they are good ones):
–The Transcript of Amaranth’s Group Investor Conferenmce Call;
–Full text of Sept. 29 letter from Amaranth Advisors to its investors;
–Amaranth Swag on eBay or Amaranth Lost Six Billion Dollars, and All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt
• Money Manager: Things You Should Know & Ask
Lots of New this week
• New Conundrum: Who’s Right, Stocks or Bonds?
• In Asia, they are discussing The US, a debtor nation;
• Former Fed Chair Paul Volcker spoke extensively at Bloomberg HQ;
• Lastly, for you soft landing aficionados, try these three:
Psychology & Sentiment
Energy & Commodities
• Three related politics of oil articles:
–How Bush Looks to Define Energy-Policy Focus
–Better Mood at the Gas Pump. What About the Voting Booth?
–Americans look for political manipulation as gasoline prices plunge (I personally am not even remotely convinced of this)
• This week saw lots of Ugly Headlines About Slumping Real Estate;
• We’ve heard about all sorts of exotic loans: Interest only, variable fixed, Libor based, No document loans. Here’s a new one on me: Liar Loans. Apparently they exist, and go way beyond Home Buyers Stretching Truth, Budgets to Get Loans; Here is a discussion of the Lending Guidelines an Credit Squeeze
• The Good: So far, the Revision of ARMs not yet impacting people’s pocketbooks
• The Bad: Home Prices Drop; 1st time in a Decade
• Let’s keep the book trashing party going (this one is a doozy): Are You Missing the Real Estate Boom? Why The Boom Will Not Bust and Why Property Values Will Continue to Climb Through the End of the Decade — by none other than NAR’s Chief Economist, David Lereah;
• Lots of Houses are still selling — but Pricing Your Home Gets Trickier As Houses Languish on the Market
• Condo prices near a cliff;
• Well, which is it?
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
• Author Douglas Coupland ask "Is Google God?" (fascinating)
• Every vote by your US Senator, now on line
• Google: Chaos by design
• I’ve long wondered about this: What to do with your old cell phones
• Beam Me Up: Apple’s iTV strategy is iChat on steroids
• Here’s 2 for you covert fans:
Music Film TV Books Fun!
•The shortlist for the second annual Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award was announced Tuesday.
• Ticketmaster challenged by upstart over excessive fees: Concert Giant Sees Cutting Prices as Ticket to Success
• The funniest movie preview I’ve seen in a long while — I laughed out — is Norbit. Not only does Eddie Murphy play the lead character, and an enormous black woman, and an elderly Chinese Man, but the trailer has the best usage of the Jaws theme since, well, the infamous Caddyshack.
• Nearly everything you listen to today can trace their roots to this TV appearance;
• The Green Flag’s Out for Bold, Fast and Highly Styled Cars
• And just because its so amusing: Senate Wins Fight To Lower Allowable Amperage Levels On Detainees’ Testicles
That’s all she wrote, from what looks to be a nice weekend here in the Northeast. Enjoy the nice weather while it lasts!