Points out how the problems with the tax code are really more about defining income rather than tax rates. It is easy for the rich to defer/shelter income — far better to tax increases in net wealth, and tax all people like traders, who are marked-to-market at the end of each fiscal year.
One of my “labor of love” pieces written for RealMoney — five parts, dealing with how to interrogate management teams. A lot of the game is asking the wrong questions, and seeing how management answers them.
Uh, this post made me persona non grata in Bermuda for 2-3 years. I think I could return now. Part of the difficulty was that I was not told that sessions were supposed to be “off the record.” That said, my blog was the most popular blog in Bermuda for a day. Apologies, HF, and thanks for inviting me; sorry to embarrass you.
Fascinating to see all of the markets that were going to blow up within 15 months trotted out for display. Also, the basics of my theory on how one detects bubbles.
Failure brings maturity to a market; risk-based pricing follows the realization of risk.
Important piece, because people watch PIMCO on the tube, and think that they make money off of their economic predictions, which are often wrong. PIMCO is really a bunch of intelligent fixed income quants, who make their money off of mispriced out-of-the-money volatility.
Analyzing comments of Cramer and others as to when the Private Equity bull market would end.
I was commenting on how it is hard it is to call a top, because they are processes rather than events. Who can tell how long foolish liquidity can last?
Part one on my “Fed Model.” Analyzing secondary factors in stock and bond performance.
I suggested that a small number of players would get hit by losses in subprime. True enough, but what I did not know was how much risk was still being held by investment banks.
In some environments, PB-ROE and low P/E investing will be similar, but that will not always be true. Do not accept a false simplification, even though it may be true at present. The PB-ROE model is richer, and works in more environments, after adjusting for the limitations listed above. PB-ROE is a very useful tool, and not “gobbledygook.”
Defends a version of the dividend discount model, and shows the simplifications that the “Fed Model” imposes are unrealistic, while showing that a more realistic model can add value over the long run.
Roger Nusbaum ably pointed out how demographics favors an increasing amount of dividends being paid to retiring Baby Boomers. That is true. We have ETNs being set up to do that (beware of Bear Stearns default risk), and hedge fund-of-funds crowding into strategies that synthetically create yield. Beyond that, we have Wall Street creating funky yield vehicles that gyp facilitate the yield needs of buyers (while handing them capital losses).
My main point is this. Approach yield the way a businessman would. If you see an above average yield, say 4% or higher, ask what conditions could lead them to lower the yield. History is replete with situations where companies paid handsome dividends for longer than was advisable.
Back in 2002, I heard Peter Bernstein give an excellent talk on the value of dividends to the Baltimore Security Analysts Society. At the end, privately, many scoffed, but I thought he was on the right track. I still like dividends, but I like businesses that grow in value yet more. Aim for good returns in cash generating businesses, and the dividends will follow. Stretching for dividends is as bad as stretching for yield on bonds. That extra bit of yield can be poisonous, leading to capital losses far greater than the incremental yield obtained.
A somewhat whimsical piece that looked at implied equity volatility alone, and suggested that either the equity market was low, or equity volatility was high. The truth was neither. Equity volatility would blow out and go higher still, along with credit spreads. Fortunately I was not dogmatic about my model’s conclusions. I was more bearish in general in late July.
So much for that era. It was an interesting time as the bubble neared its apex.