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grant.w.underwood Posted: Tue, Oct 23 2012 9:02 PM

I've been waiting for a thread kind of like this for a while and I decided just to make one.

I'd like this thread to be kind of a low content investment thread.  Post predictions, ideas on where you would invest/how you would go about investing in that area, future products that have potential to be revolutionary, investment articles, investment questions, and regulations around the world that will have a great impact on the market.

________________________

I'll start it with a question:  Obviously most of us are interested in gold.  I'd like to know how to get into that market besides going out and buying physical gold.  What are my options?  What does Peter Schiff do?  Mining companies?

________________________

I do most my research and pay attention to the tech market.

I've posted in the past that I like facebook stock and i have purchased stock in it (bought and sold several times).  Where i was ridiculed for that investment so I'm going to do a little face rubbing now and mention that it has brought me just 40% return on investment in under the 3 months i have owned it (though technically i was probably actually holding the stock for half the time).

Personally I like volatility in a stock because I think its much easier to read the stock and figure out the market's feelings of that stock is.  I know most investors dont like that and would rather have a brick and mortar company its just my personal preference.

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My favorite company (I'm close to pulling the trigger and buying a few shares) is google.

They took a beating last week because it didnt meet expectations.  Though they have spent this past year spending A LOT of money in infrastructure and i think next year some of those products will start paying off.  They also have a business model (in terms of PRICING) similar to WalMart.  They sell their products for almost no profit with the assumption that they will purchase complimentary goods for that product.

Here is a look at a few of there things that they are coming out with or are already out that i think is really going to impact the markets and the way we live our lives.

Google Glass

 

Google TV

 

Self-driving car

 

Google fiber (your bill wont be any higher than your internet bill now, but 100x faster) - This is a big one.

 

Chromebook - This might not seem like a big deal, but it shows the vision of the company of gutting prices and redefining our computers

Also the chromebox - which is a desktop version

 

combined with Android, google+, google wallet,  google maps, and they are getting into education you really get a vision of their future.  I think the only thing they are lacking is facebook's customers which is one of the reason why i like facebook the stock because google is going to need them since no one is using google+ (yet).  They get me excited.

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Personally my favorite company right now is Valve. They are completely flat - they show that people can put out quality stuff when there's absolutely no one telling them what to do.

As far as what I'd want to invest in, I'd invest in public rail in a city. Completely privately owned.

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Prime replied on Tue, Oct 23 2012 9:26 PM

I'll bite. I'm interested in natural gas plays at the moment. I believe it is the future of energy, particularly with cars. The problem is, short of actually buying futures contracts, there aren't any good instruments to invest in. The ETFs such as UNG have major contango issues. I'm interested in finding some sort of a start up company that installs or produces home compressed natural gas units. These are units that can take the natural gas your home already has, compresses the natural gas, and fuel your car over night with it while it sits in your garage.

Right now these units cost 4 or 5 K, which cancells out any fuel savings you might get. I haven't researched it heavlily yet, but if you could find a good company (not General Electric) to invest in, I see huge potential.

 

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ive been thinking a lot about 'public' transportation and just how the US would be different if so much government money hadnt gone into building roads and how the private sector would of created something much cheaper and faster then individual cars.

 

this certainly isnt the answer, but it got me thinking that something like this would of been invented where people had individual rail carts (motorized/electrical not exercise hah) to get where they are going.

Just imagine how much cheaper it would of been to build up this system over roads.  We would probably be buying fancy carts for around 5k$ rather than spending 40k on a new car.

also if the government had not subsidized the railroad industry they would of built STRAIGHT tracks to destinations rather than subsidizing them per mile so we had zig zag rails.

 

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Yeah. I've always had a bit of a fascination with public transportation, particularly rails (like metrorails), and I firmly believe that public transporation would be infinately better if done by the private sector. Really, everything is done better by the private sector.

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prime - i mentioned investing in natural gas too before.  I think its a great industry and we are at the ground level.  Though i would like to see something more out of it, perhaps i just need to do a little more research.

I had mentioned following what boone pickens is doing, i think he is the largest owner of natural gas wells.  He has been lobbying the government pretty hard core he past year or two on it and the president has been talking about giving natural gas subsidies.  So if i do invest in natural gas in the coming years i will find out where boone's money is and invest there! hah.

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SM - however public transportion will continue to be a waste if the government is putting down billions annually on roads that go up to people's driveways for free.  I dont see rail ever taking off until public funds stop funding roads (which will not happen unless we have an economic collapse).  The private sector cannot compete with that.

 

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That's true. A free market that's under the government is never free.

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DanielMuff replied on Wed, Oct 24 2012 12:16 AM

grant.w.underwood:
 
I would soooooooo do that.

Anyway, I do not understand people's obsession with driving. I guess that they like the feeling of driving because it makes them feel like they are in control of something in their lives. Steer right and the car goes right. Steer left and the car goes left. Tell your kid to eat his veggies... nope, try again.

But what better feeling than knowing that you can control other people than by paying someone to drive you and your family around town? That is, taking a taxi or Uber. <rant style="awesome" />

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Kakugo replied on Wed, Oct 24 2012 2:51 AM

Mining companies right now are somewhat of an hazard. None of them mines exclusively gold (which is in high demand, especially in Asia): most of them make most of their money in other ores (whose demand is now slowly but steadily declining). However the time to buy stocks may be near, if you plan on holding upon them long term. Rio Tinto peaked around February, then took a steady nose dive until May, then rallied and then at fell at the year lowest in early September, then rallied again and is now starting drop again. If the present trend continues in a couple weeks their stocks may make a good buy. The trend however is towards instability, as Marc Faber rightly warned last year.

As for gold nothing, and I mean nothing, beats physical bullions, coins and ingots. You can buy gold ETF: some of them are pretty good, like ETFS Physical Swiss Gold Shares (SGOL) or SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) but always remember these are speculative funds. Seems you are handy at handling these things so they be just what you are looking for.

Personally I don't invest in the high-tech market because, plainly put, I am rubbish at it. I made decent money with pharma, government bonds etc: things I understand. From my read it appears the main risk with established hi-tech companies like Google or Apple is not they may be losing money but that the pace at which they introduce innovations may slow down. Investors expect a compay such as Google to keep churning out new software, services etc at breakneck speed. Even if the company is financially very solid a slowdown in innovation or a slightly underperforming product is enough to see share price plummet. I am not tech-savvy enough to read the signs.

I also have money invested in China. For all their faults I believe they stand a better chance of braving the coming storms than either Europe or the US. I stuck to big, solid (brick and mortar as you said) companies like Petrochina, Tsingtao Brewery or the State-owned Agricultural Bank of China. Lately I also invested (though not as much) in Japan by buying government bonds and obligations: the Japanese were the first to read the signs and are bracing for impact. They stand in better stead than many others.

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Stocks in weapons and military contractors should do well for the foreseeable future. Somewhat dated, but an interesting short article:

Ethics of Weapons Stocks

http://www.chaostan.com/weaponstocks.html

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My Buddy replied on Wed, Oct 24 2012 6:11 AM

Smith and Wesson is a stock that has served me well recently. Guns are definitely a pretty good buy.

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Kakugo-  thanks for the gold info ill check them out.

ya you are right about tech firms about expections.  It's the very reason i dont like apple stock.  They are hitting a wall and if you compare their products with its competition they are worse.  They still have some potential growth left when they come out with a smart tv monitor, but they are behind the game now.  They arent innovating in other areas for growth.  The main reason why ppl choose apple over competition is the 'social' status of owning there products.  That's going to wear off in the next few years the allure of smartphones and iPads wear off and ppl start buying cheaper products as they are starting to do now.

i mention google because they are innovating above expections (obviously this is 100% opinion ).  Those products they are coming out with are really ground breaking and they are setting themselves up to be a one stop shop forf your connectivity needs (outside of what facebook controls).  Specifically the google fiber Internet that they are starting on in Kansas City.  Literally i think google is making a play at the monopoly of land line Internet.  They are pricing it as if its a mature competive market and looks like they aren't taking profits on itin the short run.  I don't see how any company is going to be able to enter the market besides huge cash holding companies, but why would they when google pricing is too low to profit off it.  One thing that struck me was that they are going to give free Internet (at cable Internet speeds not fiber)  to any home that pays for the installation of the fiber optic cables to their home (300$).  It's crazy.

china- ya im very interested in their market.  I don't like how they undervalue their dollar and i don't know why they are doing it or for how long.  Petrochina is the only investment that i really pay any attention to.  Though i do try and find out more info on their market...however the US doesn't like to advertise their success.

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Prime replied on Wed, Oct 24 2012 12:05 PM

One more note on China. I believe China is now setting up their currency, the Yuan, to someday be backed by gold. They are importing gold like crazy and literally purchasing gold mines in foreign countries. Their officially holdings are kept highly secret, and some day soon they may surprise the world with what they have accumulated.The war they are conducting with the U.S. is a currency war. I believe you can walk into Bank of America with dollars and walk out with Chinese Yuan. It is not hard to find if you look for it.

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In terms of buying and selling physical gold and silver.  Where and how do you do it?

how close to market prices do you actually getto buy and sell it at?  For example if i walked into a good pawn shop how much should i expect to sell an ounce of gold for compared to the market rate.  

Where else are easy places to sell 

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Prime replied on Wed, Oct 24 2012 1:31 PM

Grant, I bought physical gold a few years ago when it was much cheaper than it is now (about the 800-1000$ range). I bought it from a local coin shop and paid anywhere from $40 to $60 over spot price, depending on the particular coin. American Eagles commanded the highest premium, and Krugerands the lowest. It just depends on supply at the time I guess. The dealer required a cash payment and there is no paperwork to fill out.

Silver coins have a higher premium  as a percentage of the investment. A few weeks ago I asked a local pawn shop about Silver Eagles. The spot price was around $34.50 and he was asking around $39, quite a hefty premium. I did not negotiate but may have been able to talk him down a little.

As for selling the stuff, I've never done that. I asked a few years ago what my coin dealer would purchase back for and again he said it depends on supply and demand. At certain times he has a waiting list for people who want the coins. He said if he has an immediate buyer he may offer spot or even slightly above in spot markets. Other times he may give a few dollars below spot.

What I do not understand is if when you do sell the stuff back to a dealer/pawn shop, is do they require you to fill out any tax forms. I just can't figure out how you would pay capital gains on something if there is no record you actually bought the stuff.

And one other lesson I learned, don't try to sell the stuff to jewelry stores, or these cash for gold companies. Since they are not coin dealers who immediately resell the coins, they offer way below spot price. I had a local jeweler a month or so ago over me $200 below spot. He didn't even know what he was talking about. He was more interested in the purity of the coin than the fact it was 1 ounce of gold.

 

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Groucho replied on Wed, Oct 24 2012 11:00 PM

My Buddy:

Smith and Wesson is a stock that has served me well recently. Guns are definitely a pretty good buy.

Guns themselves are an excellent investment. I wouldn't risk stocks in the companies though, since it's probably only a matter of time before they get hit by the same legal scams that tobacco companies got clobbered with.
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Stocks are taking a beating today. And Apple took a dive so i picked up a few shares at sub $560.

Comments on the price? apple in general?

my comments:

im likeing ipad mini, the new new ipad, and new imac (which is long needed) for the holiday season.

So im thinking good earnings in january also i have a feeling that the new new ipad release was to make room for their march media day for a big product...an Apple smart TV.  then plan on getting out from those two bumps.

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Personally, I am going to put money in a number of funds based on China, emerging markets, Russia, hard currencies, metals (especially silver), commodities and perhaps property. Jim Rogers reckons commodities are still undergoing a bull rush. I don't know if his predictions will pan out as long as he hopes, and I am not sure if Peter Schiff is right that gold and silver still have a long way to go up, but they're more reasonable bets than blown up mutual funds I guess. The US still has farther to plummet, so I'll wait till it's dirt cheap. Schiff reckons investing in solid foreign (read: Asian and EM) owned and based firms that pay dividends is a good strategy going forwards, but obviously this partially will depend on the direction the dollar is headed in. Long term, I'd say it's all the way down but with currencies it's all relative to other currencies and a matter of faith in the US' credibility.

 

I'm an amateur at it still but as I read further I am hoping to be able to make more specific picks, or pay someone to do it for me. Are there any good subscription services etc. that provide good investment info? Someone on here before mentioned Business Investor's Daily, the FT and CXO Advisory. I tend to track stuff from Schiff and Rogers.

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grant.w.underwood:

I've been waiting for a thread kind of like this for a while and I decided just to make one.

I'd like this thread to be kind of a low content investment thread.  Post predictions, ideas on where you would invest/how you would go about investing in that area, future products that have potential to be revolutionary, investment articles, investment questions, and regulations around the world that will have a great impact on the market.

Thanks for creating this thread.  Last time, you recommended Facebook.  Do you still favor this company?

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ya i still like it at 20 and i have bought and sold it on that advice now a few times since i recommended it on this forum it has given me a 40+% ROI. 

i currently dont own it because i sold it when the earnings came out and it shot up and ive been waiting for it to come back down..  But its about at my buy price.  since it has dipped as low as 18$ i think it can easily go that low again (if you want to wait and maximize) though i will buy at 19 because its to volatile and i dont want to miss out on gains.  Zuckerberg can make a silly statement and shoots this stock up 20%. 

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think blue - bought it monday and im already selling it again after today.  add another 15%.

So ive got a question to maximize my returns.

Does anyone know about selling short?  are small investors allowed to sell short?  how does financing a short sell go?  surely they wont give just anyone credit?  anyone know?

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Hopefully, I'll be able to put my 401k into IRA/401k that focuses on EM/BRIC, gold, etc. I could cash it in (from my old company) and buy gold, but I would take a 25% hit.

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Question:

Any decent gold standard theorists have an opinion on whether someone should (today or in the relative near future) buy one ounce of gold (at today's market price of 1724.90$ usd) or buy52.81 ounces of silver (silver's market price is at 32.66$ usd).  Why or why not?

*This concept of buying silver or gold would be based on the assumption that the USD will crash.

 

Myknee jerk reaction is obviously to buy the gold.  However gold is unreasonably high (in terms of pocket change/walking around money), so one would have to pay to convert it into silver.

 

**This question is also making the assumption that the people will choose GOLD as money with an  undetermined outcome of what role will silver play.  Also opinions on the use of copper providing help in the monetary system (Copper market price: 3.45$ usd)

****(I am still looking for the best place of where to buyphysical gold or silver)

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Aiser replied on Wed, Nov 14 2012 5:36 PM

I'm curious about what information do you guys use to invest and speculate? I know what Doug Casey stated several times about how the coming years will be a "speculators delight". Namely i shorting Govt bonds.

How ever investing in stocks and speculatio is something I'm not to keen on as of yet.  What books and websites do you guys read to understand the real technical sides of these things?

I kind of feel like I'm loosing out on a lot by understanding Austrian economics and anticipating market news and crisis before they actually happen without profiting from it lol.

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Prime replied on Wed, Nov 14 2012 5:43 PM

Aiser, the speculation that goes on in this thread is nothing more than gambling. You may as well walk into a casino and put that money on a roullette wheel. In the very short term, there is nothing you can look at to make an "educated" speculation, because the short term movement in a stock price are completely random.

Austrian econ. may provide us with a longer term picture of what to do with our money, but that is all. Specifically timing the market is impossible. Sometimes you get lucky sometimes you don't. This thread certainly needs a new name, as "Investor's Corner" is the antithesis of what this is.

 

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all investments are gambles.  If it was a sure thing then there wouldnt be any profits or gains in it.  You are suggesting that you can remove risk out of an investment which is impossible.

Maybe it is because i used to play poker for a living that i understand/prone to invest where there is more volatility and variance.

I cant think of a single great investor who does not understand the idea of investing when there is 'blood on the streets' or 'invest where the money is scared'.  Yes it is a risk.  It is always a risk.

 

*and this thread was created to suggest any investments.  So if you have any ideas on investment, tools for investing, where you suggest putting savings, or anything other than you might was well visit your local casino it would be appreciated.  This thread is to educate.

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Prime replied on Wed, Nov 14 2012 6:06 PM

Grant,

I didn't say anything about risk. Aiser asked what to read in order to speculate and "anticipate market news." I answered by saying, using different words, that there is nothing. Just like when I asked you a few months ago why you targeted $14 (or whatever it was) for Facebook, you couldn't respond. It was just something you came up, some random number. You admitted as much. My point is, if you want to invest for the long term, understanding AE can serve at best as a guide. But to speculate in the near term is gambling.

 

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14 was what i targeted at the bottom (i think. but i know 14-15 was around my bottom price).  and im pretty sure i did respond because a couple people mentioned it and it was purely an opinion/guess/risk.  but i argued for a 20$ price and i mentioned that there is still a strong risk that it falls to 15$.

i made a defense on fundamentals for a 7-10 valuation.  it was just my opinion that the market wouldnt allow it to go that low and i felt 20$ was the highest probabilityofthe low market price.  if you look at the history of the price since i made the arguement you will see that my pricing was virtually perfect (though now im closer to 19$).  If anyone had taken my advice (advice that i myself have acted on) and bought and sold on that price you would of received 70% ROI since AUGUST.  

To conclude: we are pretty much on the same page on opinions.  I agree that there is really nothing without being the actual person making decisions that can anticipate market news.  I agree that i virtually picked a random number (though as an investor everyone has to random pick a number to invest at.).  I agree AE is more of a guide in your investing choices.  I agree short term speculation is a gamble. (in defense of my facebook buying, by no means do i think facebook is a short term investment.  i think its a long term and history will prove it.  Money is scared on how facebook will make money, i personally cant see how a company cant capitalize on a billion customers half of which use your business daily.  and i think connectivity is the wave of the future and facebook is the leader and is the only company whose vision of the future is connectivity)

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Prime replied on Wed, Nov 14 2012 6:46 PM

I'll make just a quick generalization about tech stocks. If you believe that the collapse of the dollar is imminent, and most Austrians that I read do, then you must consider where you want your assets when this collapse occurs. When it does collapse, would you say your investments will be safest in a company that makes iPads and iPhones? How about a social network site? Are the masses going to rush to play Farmville and Tweet? Remember, we are talking about a freaking collapse here!

I want my assets to be in physical precious metals, energy, farmland and farm machinery, ammunition and guns, etc..

 

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If anything, with Obama's re-election it is possible that the corporation tax will go up which will further damage stock earnings. I would say the US is a terrible place to invest long-term right now. Maybe if you're a skilled technical trader short term gains can be realised but that isn't investment so much as trading.

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Prime replied on Wed, Nov 14 2012 7:07 PM

Prime:

One more note on China. I believe China is now setting up their currency, the Yuan, to someday be backed by gold. They are importing gold like crazy and literally purchasing gold mines in foreign countries. Their officially holdings are kept highly secret, and some day soon they may surprise the world with what they have accumulated.The war they are conducting with the U.S. is a currency war. I believe you can walk into Bank of America with dollars and walk out with Chinese Yuan. It is not hard to find if you look for it.

 
To follow up on this thought from ZeroHedge:

From Bloomberg:

  • China needs to add to its gold reserves to ensure national economic and financial safety, promote yuan globalization and as a hedge against foreign- reserve risks, Gao Wei, an official from the Department of International Economic Affairs of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, writes in a commentary in the China Securities Journal today.
  • While gold prices are currently near record highs, China can build its reserves by buying low and selling high amid the short-term volatility, Gao writes in newspaper
  • China’s gold reserve is “too small”, Gao says

And there it is: while many have speculated that China, which has not given an update of its official holdings in nearly 4 years, is quietly building up its gold reserve holdings behind the scenes, there was no reason to worry. The time to worry would be when China was starting to give indications it is prepared to tell the world what its true gold holdings are (by now certainly well over 1000 tonnes). And the above piece from Wei is just that: because in saying very little, the Chinese official with a key political post has just given the first hint that China is preparing to give its official gold far greater focus. And from there, the time until China releases an IMF update on its official reserve holdings will be measured in days if not hours. Because all the gold will have long been accumulated.

And once that happens it will be too late to buy any incremental gold. Or tungsten.

 

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So, now is the time to buy gold, yuans, or both?

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certainly is a scary thought of its potential.

and...tungsten?  whats up with tungsten?

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Prime replied on Wed, Nov 14 2012 7:22 PM

The tungsten comment is joke at ZeroHedge because there are more and more cases of what are supposed to be gold bars in fact turning up to be tungsten bars that are just coated in gold. Many believe that is in fact what fills Fort Knox.

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shackle - its really impossible to say.  how long will you be holding onto it because gold prices are certainly able to be manipulated in the short run.  I'm feeling that the US gov has plenty of spies in china and will be attempting to undermine whatever the chinese are doing which in the long run ultimately wont matter it, but could effect the price of gold greatly within the next 5-10 years. (and the US could be doing it right now raising the price of gold to force the chinese and anyone else to buy at a higher price. though i havent seen any evidence of it)

yuans are even harder to say because it would depend on what the chinese real intentions are.  the chinese can even attempt to make their currency attractive for the foreign buyer by under valuation (which they are almost undoubtly doing) then just ditch the yuan on foreign investor hedging against the losses of their USD debt.  While swapping yuans for a new commodity back currency domestically.  personally i would stay out of yuans all together.

 

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prime - wow. so no one has a clue where, when or who did this? 

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Aiser replied on Wed, Nov 14 2012 7:40 PM

I agree that A.E is certainly a kind of guide or template of choices on investing or speculation. But A.E when it focuses on real growth, I don't see how FaceBook would pass a litmus test on investment. Even thought I am inexperienced when dealing with stocks and ect, I remember when Groupon first went public the stock price IMO was over priced and plummeted on day one. And I actually anticipated this on my spare time devil.FB did go throught a similar episode. If we look at it from A.E then I think we would have to focus on something tangible backing such stock picks and shorts? (Gold, Led, Silver, Chickens, Broccolli, Apples, IPads and so on). While connectivity is great I don't see how FB can be a long-tern investment without something of real monetary value?

 

IMO at some point FB will go dead much like how MiGente and MySpace pretty much went, but that is my own bias. :)

  • | Post Points: 5
Top 500 Contributor
Posts 257
Points 4,920
Prime replied on Wed, Nov 14 2012 7:42 PM

Grant, this turned up in Manhattan.

As to your theory of the U.S. keeping gold prices high to screw the Chinese, many feel it is in fact the exact opposite. It is more likely the U.S. is suppressing the price of gold. The U.S. owes China a trillion dollars which we could never repay. Perhaps if the boys at J.P Morgan and Goldman can keep the price artificially low, then China can load up and not worry so much about getting screwed out of that trillion.

  • | Post Points: 35
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