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    The Kaiser

    Few Americans realize how close the Allies came to losing World War I just 100 years ago in the spring of 1918. The United States had declared war on Imperial Germany in April 1917 but few American troops had reached the Western Front by the spring of 1918. The German High Command led by General Erich Ludendorff gambled that an early spring offensive could overwhelm the French and British forces before the Yanks arrived in force.The Germans moved hundreds of thousands of troops fresh from their ...  Continue Reading

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    Whats Up with Bonds?

    What’s up with bonds? Well, for one thing interest rates are up and they will probably drift higher as the Powell Fed tries to “normalize” interest rates. As investors know all too well, the Federal Reserve severely suppressed interest rates between 2008 and late 2015 under the mistaken hope that low rates would stimulate the economy.   Continue Reading

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    Tesla, the Poster Child

    Tesla is the poster child for the valuation disparities that have marked the stock market since 2009. Tesla has piled up nearly $3 billion of operating losses since going public yet it carries a market capitalization of $50 billion. It produced just 100,000 cars in 2017 and lost $2 billion in the process.   Continue Reading

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    US Oil Production Soon to Lead World

    Oil production in the United States exceeded 10.3 million barrels per day in February. As recently as 2007 the US only produced about 7 million barrels per day and pundits talked about “Peak Oil”. What’s happened?   Continue Reading

  • Unknown Unknowns

    Wall Street strategists love playing games at the start of a new year. One involves predicting the 5 or 10 most impactful financial events for the coming year. An objective observer can tabulate the strategists’ predictions and sometimes detect a consensus.   Continue Reading

  • Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway

    Warren Buffett’s company, Berkshire Hathaway, saw its class A shares exceed $300,000 per share in December 2017. Since then the stock price has continued to rally and it recently traded over $320,000 per share making it by far the highest priced stock in the world. Buffett has run Berkshire Hathaway since April 1965 when he purchased control of what was then a struggling New England textile company.   Continue Reading

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    Under the Radar

    Saharan SnowOn January 8 16 inches of snow fell in the Algerian town of Ain Sefra in the Sahara Desert. This was only the third such occurrence in the past 37 years. Meteorologists said unusually high pressure over Europe forced frigid air down into North Africa.Private Space RocketsPrivate companies are becoming bigger players in the launch business.   Continue Reading

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    All Tuned Up

    For those of you who don’t know, Marc Albertson comes from a musical family. Marc’s father, George, was the song leader in his church and his mother, Jeane, played the organ. During their growing up years, George, Jeane and their five children sang as a family in north Georgia and east Tennessee churches.The music sometimes ventured outside the church.   Continue Reading

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    What Assumed Rate of Return is in YOUR Financial Plan?

    In the January 20, 2018 weekend edition of the Wall Street Journal, Jason Zweig writes an excellent article titled “The Fantasy is Alive, Just Don’t Embrace It.” The article urges investors to be brutally honest about future returns in their portfolio. He illustrates the unrealistic expectations of the investment community by using the most sophisticated (and presumably, most knowledgeable) of all investors – managers of public pension plans, as an example.A recent study by Alexander Andonov and...  Continue Reading

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    Back to the Future

    On January 10th my dad will turn 93 years old. He is a member of “The GI Generation,” the oldest of the six living generations of Americans. Members of that generation are those born from 1901 to 1926.   Continue Reading

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