Ahh, another weekend in the Bay Area – this one with lots of open homes in my own neighborhood. Boring? I know – but, hey, spying on the improvements my neighbors make is fun. Speaking of spying, let’s talk informally for a bit about the NSA’s recently revealed spying programs… and of a compliant press […]
“Cut rates and eliminate deductions”, as a bumper sticker (ahem, Twitter) length quote, started to reenter the public consciousness again during the recent Presidential election. The phrase came to be associated with Mitt Romney, although, to be fair, he was almost forced into a position on rates by refusing to detail his stance on taxes […]
Is sports gambling beatable?
Casinos, over the years, have traditionally thought of sportsbooks as an amenity to offer to their customers as opposed to a real way to make money. They cap the bets made on traditional over/unders and to people who consistently win in sports gambling (known as ‘sharps’). The casinos believe that sports gambling is beatable by a select few and just hope that the losses of the masses can wash out the gains of the few. But, the obvious question is: if it is beatable, how does one stay ahead of the market/line-setters?
Well, S&P has finally done it – it cut the credit rating of nine European countries in response to the sovereign debt crisis in Europe. Two of those countries, France and Austria, formerly held AAA ratings, the highest grade which S&P assigns to sovereign debt (read: the lowest default risk). You know that DQYDJ thinks rating the debt of countries is silly because risk (default and debasement/inflation) is already priced in, but let’s humor S&P and take a look at how the world’s debt ratings now stack up. You can also see a similar map from the US debt ratings cut back in August.
Great attention in major media sources has been called to the recent dip in oil prices (CL1Q) which peaked at over $114 per 159 liters of light crude. It is hovering around $94 now, which is a decrease of over 16% from the peak. Traditional thinking claims that gas prices typically peak in the summer months due to more gas being used during holiday travel times such as the 4th of July and Memorial Day (and Earth Day: irony?). One of the recent developments is a claim by OPEC companies that the International Energy Association (IEA) released emergency oil stocks to alter the oil prices. In response, some observers believe that Saudi Arabia will not follow through on their promise to increase oil production by as much as originally claimed (some reading here and here). The confusion as to how each individual country will respond to this creates very different incentives for each of the countries in OPEC.
Not all of us have surplus money stacked up under our mattresses. But it isn’t very hard to believe that after careful budgeting and hard work we can put away some money for the future. When we finally get to this point some of us see many opportunities and are unsure of what to do with our money. Personal investing can be a very opportunistic option and can pay off greatly if money is put in the right places. We strive to put away money for investing, and then have no idea of what investment opportunities are available and which are the most advantageous. It is important to research different roads we can take before we get to them.