10 Thursday AM Reads

Now baseball starts to get interesting; Our morning train reads always are:

• The share buyback mirage (The Economist)
• Abenomics Is Doing Better Than You Think (WSJ)
• The Five Dimensions of Quality: Ask Cliff Asness, Ken French, or Benjamin Graham to define ‘quality’, and you would hear three different answers (CIO)
• Twitter’s Moment (Stratechery)
• End of the world plan: scientists to nudge asteroid off course as practice for protecting the Earth (The Independentsee also New Scale Pinpoints Most Life-Friendly Alien Planets (Gizmodo)

Continues here

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Discussions found on the web:
  1. RW commented on Oct 8

    The government’s finances are not like a household’s or corporation but they are also not the same as a nation’s.

    “The Country Can’t Afford”
    There’s one thing George Osborne said in his Conference speech this week which looks odd. It’s this:

    We simply can’t subsidise incomes with ever-higher welfare and tax credit bills the country can’t afford.

    …What’s going on here? Part of the answer is that Osborne is perpetuating an error which the Tories – and indeed journalists – have been committing for years: he is equating the government’s finances with the nation’s. …

    Of course, any fool can see that this is wrong: the country and the government are not the same thing. For a large part of the country, tax credits improve their finances. …

    NB: It is quite clear from commentary in the US that “any fool” can not in fact see this is wrong but it is important to understand that the “nation cannot afford” argument is (a) rooted in a category error and (b) is often made cynically by those who actually do know better; i.e., a “small government” proponent is trying to dishonestly bolster their case.

    • willid3 commented on Oct 8

      but but its Obama!

  2. RW commented on Oct 8

    The China Debt Fizzle
    Remember the dire threat posed by our financial dependence on China? A few years ago it was all over the media, generally stated not as a hypothesis but as a fact. Obviously, terrible things would happen if China stopped buying our debt, or worse yet, started to sell off its holdings. …

    …of course those who got this completely wrong have learned nothing from the experience.

    NB: Actually there is reason to suspect that a few of the austerian/inflationista/crypto-tinygov crowd knew all along that the national debt panic story was probably wrong, damaging to a large % of their fellow citizens and very possibly utter bullshit from top to bottom but it wasn’t members of their tribe getting the shaft so ….

  3. VennData commented on Oct 8

    Ben Carson botched an interview about the debt ceiling

    In an awkward back and forth on “Marketplace,” the top-tier GOP presidential candidate baffled host Kai Ryssdal by apparently conflating the debt limit with broader budgetary issues.


    Another liberal Gotcha! Regular folks are what we need in gubmint. ‘Merka needs regular folks who balance their checkbook and love their families not experienced, proven managers of government.

  4. CD4P commented on Oct 8

    “Now baseball starts to get interesting.”

    Just make sure you have ‘adequate alternatives’ lined up for all the pitching changes.

    • romerjt commented on Oct 8

      Record the game and start watching at least a half hour after the real start = no commercials, pitching changes, replay and any other boring stuff.

  5. VennData commented on Oct 8

    From the Economist….

    “… And research by Robert Arnott and Cliff Asness shows that high payout ratios are followed by periods of high earnings growth, not low. Low payout ratios were followed by periods of slow earnings growth; companies, in short, are not great at reinvesting…”

    But those CEOs need huge pay packages to allocate capital less poorly than their competitors?


  6. RW commented on Oct 8

    Dodd-Frank redux

    Timothy Geithner and the Auditors
    … In the debate on Dodd-Frank, Senator Al Franken proposed an amendment which would have the Securities and Exchange Commission pick the rating agency, instead of the issuer. The bank would still pay the fee, but since they were no longer controlling who got the work, it eliminated the conflict of interest problem. The amendment passed the senate 65-34, with considerable bi-partisan support.

    Unfortunately, as Geithner indicated in his autobiography, the Obama administration apparently did not like the dismantling of the perfect system we have today. The Franken amendment was removed in the conference committee and the existing structure was left in place. …

    NB: by all accounts Geithner was a competent and hard-working technocrat but he was also a captured bank regulator and not competent in macroeconomics so it remains a ‘mystery’ (being polite here) why Obama appeared more willing to accept Geithner’s economic policy opinions than recommendations from the highly competent macroeconmist (Romer) he presumably hired for that role.

    • Jojo commented on Oct 8

      11-year-old Tennessee boy shoots 8-year-old girl over argument about puppy
      BY Jason Silverstein
      Updated: Monday, October 5, 2015

      Maykayla Dyer, 8, was shot and killed by her next-door neighbor after she said he couldn’t play with her puppy.

      An 11-year-old boy in Tennessee shot and killed his next door neighbor, an 8-year-old girl, over an argument about a puppy Saturday, police said.

      The young killer, a fifth-grade student at White Pine Elementary School, used his father’s 12-gauge shotgun to fire at Maykayla Dyer from inside his home around 7:30 p.m., WBIR reported.



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