Harry Newton's In Search of The Perfect Investment, Technology Investor. Harry Newton
AM ET, Thursday, December 17, 2009:Among the
ways to game Uncle Sam at the end of a year: Pre-pay 2010's expenses, e.g. rent.
Sell losers. Take the hit against gains.
jobless claims are worst than expected. This will be a jobless recovery. Nearly
20% of our workers are out of work. Sad.
Fed said yesterday it "will maintain the target range for the federal funds
rate at 0 to 1/4 percent and continues to anticipate that economic conditions,
including low rates of resource utilization, subdued inflation trends, and stable
inflation expectations, are likely to warrant exceptionally low levels of the
federal funds rate for an extended period."
means the Fed is screwing savers (like you and me) by allowing the banks to
pay us zilch.
by its own petard. When the Federal Government saved the big banks,
it created monsters. It gave them carte blanche to do whatever they wanted
like making money with the risk-free carry trade, but not lending money to risky
businesses. Its what you and I would do, had we been running a big bank.
Lack of lending
annoyed Obama, who didn't think his "Too Big To Fail Decision" through,
but it was predictable.
If Obama wants
loans for small businesses, he has his own bank. Its called
Sadly, the SBA
is grossly underfunded. And its lending is very limited only $35,000
per loan -- about what a small business could secure on the owner's credit cards.
The SBA got $50
million in additional funding from the recent Recovery Act. $50 million. Whoopee!.
Why not take some
of the returning TARP monies and give it to the SBA to make business loans?
With loans comes
jobs. Seems like this would please Obama (and the country).
What am I missing?
I believe it's
Kennedy once said
Washington was eight square miles surrounded by reality. He remains right.
lag is the worst. Press
the button and wait. It's the story of point-and-shoot cameras. Three ways to
cut the lag:
Move the ISO from auto to 100.
Move the automatic white balance to sunlight or incandescent -- depending on
where you are.
Slightly press the shutter button, hold it, wait for the smile, then fully press
about China. Huge investment opportunities abound in "clean
energy." If you didn't read the piece from this week's New Yorker, you
should. It's long. But It will educate you about China and how it's handling
those opportunities -- far better, I suspect, than we are:
in New York? This video of Alicia Keys will make you feel good. Click
Beijings crash program for clean energy. By Evan Osnos
news: McDonald's says more than 11,000 of its U.S. restaurants will
have free Wi-Fi in January. The 1,362-store Panera Bread chain and Bruegger's
Bakery Cafe, which has 292 outlets has free Wi-Fi now. Google is providing free
Wi-Fi at major airports during the holidays. Starbucks Corp., which has 11,000
locations in the U.S., charges $3.99 for two hours of Internet access, but does
have a rewards program for frequent customers who can get two hours for free.
McDonald's free Wi-Fi, which is going to provide unlimited hours of access,
will surely place pressure on Starbucks to lower its costs, several analysts
AT&T is helping
McDonalds provide the free Wi-Fi. Geeks figure it's doing this because of growing
saturation on its 3G cellular networks -- largely a result of the iPhone. My
two tennis clubs -- Roosevelt Island and Old Chatham also have free Wi-Fi, with
prominent signs that say "Laptops welcome." Biggest usage is not grownups
watching dirty movies, but kids doing their homework. I kid you not.
for Christmas. Sing carols around the Christmas
tree. Free sheet music for all your favorite carols from here.
best place to rent in New York City. It's called Gotham Hall. It's
More on Gotham
not buy a wireless clock. They don't work long-term. Mine presently
are running four minutes slow. Go figure.
at NFL game last weekend. She chased him with a giant golf club.
My wife is bored
with Tiger "jokes." I continue to be amused.
Four Jewish brothers left home for college, and eventually, they
became successful doctors, and lawyers and prospered.
Some years later,
they chatted after having dinner together. They discussed the gifts that they
were able to give to their elderly mother, who lived far away in another city.
The first said,
"I had a big house built for Mama."
The second said,
"I had a hundred thousand dollar theater built in the house."
The third said,
"I had my Mercedes dealer deliver her a SL 600 with a chauffeur."
The fourth said,
"Listen to this. You know how Mama loved reading the Torah and you know
she can't anymore because she can't see very well. I met this Rabbi who told
me about a parrot that can recite the entire Torah. It took twenty rabbis 12
years to teach him. I had to pledge to contribute $100,000 a year for twenty
years to the temple, but it was worth it. Mama just has to name the chapter
and verse and the parrot will recite it." The other brothers were impressed.
After the holidays
Mama sent out her Thank You notes.
Milton - Bubbeleh,
the house you built is so huge, I live in only one room, but I have to clean
the whole house. Thanks anyway.
Marvin - Mine
Shayne Kindeleh. I am too old to travel. I stay home. I have my groceries delivered,
so I never use the Mercedes and the driver you hired is a Nazi. The thought
was good. Thanks.
Menachim - Tataleh,
you give me an expensive theatre with Dolby sound, it could hold 50 people,
but all my friends are dead. I've lost my hearing and I'm nearly blind. I'll
never use it. Thank you for the gesture just the same.
- You were the only son to have the good sense to give a little thought to your
gift. The chicken was delicious.
This column is about my personal search
for the perfect investment. I don't give investment advice. For that you have
to be registered with regulatory authorities, which I am not. I am a reporter
and an investor. I make my daily column -- Monday through Friday -- freely available
for three reasons: Writing is good for sorting things out in my brain. Second,
the column is research for a book I'm writing called "In Search of the
Perfect Investment." Third, I encourage my readers to send me their
ideas, concerns and experiences. That way we can all learn together. My email
address is .
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