Angry Tiger Investment Club

  • federal reserve building

    Even ordinarily, the jeremiads come thick and fast at David Stockman's Contra Corner, a bearish financial blog headed by President Reagan's illustrious Office of Management and Budget director. But since the stock market's most recent cresting of July 15, now a full month ago, the predictions of gloom and ruin have been more insistent than ever at the site.

    Talk of "Yellen's invisible bubbles," "the ultimate in structured finance opacity," and the Fed's "financial repression policies" has especially infected the blog since the market started to shake off and then recover the most recent gains that have capped its impressive five-year run. And Stockman's biggest and most persistent bugbears are Wall Street opacity and the Federal Reserve.

    But also, stories chronicling the same old opacity squabbles that led to the financial meltdown of 2007-8 have been appearing in even more traditionally bullish financial media with bellwether if not fully alarming frequency. And once again, the targets are not ordinary individual investors but big institutions, this time government and para-government agencies.

    A comprehensive listing of such appeared in International Business Times recently, in which the City of Los Angeles, an Alabama county utility, and "other public institutions such as the San Francisco Asian Art Museum and the city of Richmond, California" have all complained of overly-opaque arrangements with banks, and in which some institutions have fought the arrangements they signed in courts and won.

  • Head in Hands

    Some millionaires admit to being haunted by their past mistakes. A few financial missteps have led to some costly errors.

    A recent poll taken by one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory organizations uncovered five common investment failures millionaires have made.

    The deVere Group has 80,000 clients worldwide. It recently questioned 880 of its high-net worth clients. The firm learned that these clients failed to diversify their portfolio, invest with a plan for the future, leave their emotions out of their financial decisions, review their portfolio and limit their focus on historical returns.

    Mistake #1 Diversification

    Twenty-three percent of the millionaires did not diversify their portfolios before seeking professional advice.

    Let’s face it. Diversification has its challenges. That’s why pooled investments, like mutual funds, have become popular. Also, several considerations need to occur in order to diversify, such as determining the performance level of the financial asset or asset classes, the additional fees and expenses that rack up from adding more investments to your portfolio and figuring out how much diversification is needed.

    Diversification allows you to manage risks because it involves a variety of asset classes. Remember, diversifying your portfolio needs to occur at two levels. Allocate your investments among stocks, bonds, cash equivalents and some other asset categories, and spread investments within each of the categories, the Securities Exchange Commission advised.

  • planning

    Once upon a time, back when you had to make a phone call to get a stock price quote in real time, back before an up-to-the-minute stock chart might routinely appear on a computer screen at home, it was true that even the savviest investors were ceaselessly cautioned to trust the advice of the very people who were providing them their price quotes: their personal brokers.

    Now we are in a time when a guy tells you in a self-promoting tweet that trading options is like trading for players on your fantasy football team. And it may look to you like it's fun to think about options in those terms. But what's the real evidence that trading stocks all the time is the one true path to successful investment?

    There is certainly wisdom in nodding along and listening to absolutely everything about money, every pitch and every simile, but the real wisdom comes from applying superior judgment to the various financial pitches one is presented across a life. And many such pitches involve a brackety kind of formula called an "asset allocation" strategy, which looks harmless and sensible enough.

  • stock charts newspaper

    Scattered in our earliest collected memories, perhaps for some of us even from the paleolithic time when autos only came with AM band radios, were the numbers. They were recited by a friendly man, and they ticked off a few relative terms for a handful of radio listeners: the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500, and on occasion, the select government stats that some felt could move the market: housing starts and unemployment figures.

    There's no question that increased globalism among corporations have made some of these numbers all but eccentric to the viability of larger American caps. Witness the second week of this October, when bad news from Europe precipitated more of a loss than any other news this year-to-date. No unemployment figures, good or bad, have had as much impact on market swings in recent years. Housing starts are not impacting Apple, Lockheed, McDonald's. Coca-Cola's performance in Mexico is more likely to set into motion a change on the stock than employment performance in Indiana. This world in 2014 is far more interconnected and America's presence in it makes it far more exposed to sneezes abroad.

  • fxpicture-min

    The world of foreign currency exchange trading is not for the feint of heart. Yet a position devoted to trading currency, especially a minimal, manageable one, may also fit in to the right kind of investor's portfolio as a key element and even as a key safety valve. And following the currency markets is essential for the ordinary investor who wants to complete a competent working knowledge of what is really happening to his or her overall portfolio.

    Like everything else involving the very human psychology that we might assign to a gunslinger or a riverboat gambler, the most successful of whom know themselves well enough to know their limitations, there is a logic to devoting a small position to what pros call "FX" that both buys a seat at a high rolling craps table and also makes that seat seem like the most risk-averse spot in the house once situated.

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