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Harry Newton's In Search of The Perfect Investment Technology Investor. Harry Newton Previous Columns
9:00 AM EDT, Tuesday, October 13, 2009: Google, Apple, EWA (Australia) and EWZ (Brazil) continue to climb. I'm now eyeing Verizon. It's out of favor.

But it's yielding 6.55%. It keeps raising its dividend. Click here. It has the best cell phone service (and best reputation for cell phone service) in North America. And there is talk that it will, finally, get the iPhone.

Credit Tightens for Small Businesses. From today's New York Times:

Many small and midsize American businesses are still struggling to secure bank loans, impeding their expansion plans and constraining overall economic growth, even as the country tentatively rises from its recessionary depths.

Most banks expect their lending standards to remain tighter than the levels of the last decade until at least the middle of 2010, according to a survey of senior loan officers conducted by the Federal Reserve Board. The enduring credit squeeze appears to reflect an aversion to risk among lenders confronting great uncertainty about the economy rather than any lingering effects of the panic that gripped financial markets last fall, after the collapse of the investment banking giant Lehman Brothers.

Bankers worry about the extent of losses on credit card businesses as high unemployment sends cardholders into trouble. They are also reckoning with anticipated failures in commercial real estate. Until the scope of these losses is known, many lenders are inclined to hang on to their dollars rather than risk them on loans to businesses in a weak economy, say economists and financial industry executives.

“The banks are just deathly afraid,” said Sam Thacker, a partner at Business Finance Solutions in Austin, Tex., which helps small businesses line up financing. “I don’t see commercial banks coming back to the market anytime soon.” In the long view, tighter loan standards seem healthy after a terrible crisis attributed in part to years of recklessly lenient lending.

The story adds to my advice yesterday on shorting commercial REITs.

China's censorship. If you want a license in China to deliver payTV over your broadband cable to your subscribers, the movies better not deal with -- wait for this -- politics, pornography or religion.

Chile wants your poor, your huddled masses, your tech entrepreneurs: Chile is pitching entrepreneurs with generous incentives. Read more: Click on TechCrunch.

Neat entrepreneur: From the Consumerist:

Groceries on the Upper East Side and Upper West Side of Manhattan are expensive. How expensive? One guy with a truck has started a business delivering cheaper groceries. One catch, he doesn't own a grocery store. He will go to Costco, where items cost a fraction of their Manhattan prices — and split the savings with you.

He requires that you live in a doorman building and that the savings add up to at least $40 —which shouldn't be hard based on his estimates.

Each Non-Perishable item for sale has a "Costco" price and the "Average New York City" price for the exact same item but with Costco-sized bulk packing. For instance, Charmin costs $20.19 at Costco for 30 rolls. If a customer were to purchase 30 rolls in New York City, on average, the price would be $42.18. We split the savings. The customer pays $31.19 and saves $11. The Average New York City price is derived from real prices at Fresh Direct, Fairway, Gristedes, D'Agostino's, Food Emporium, Whole Foods, Duane Reade, CVS, Staples, Petco, and Where there is no direct comparison for items, we use the overall average difference of 147.42% to calculate your final price.

100 hotels in Europe for under $150 a night: From Sunday's New York Times.

Talking about jealousy. New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd reviewed Dan Brown's latest book, The Lost Symbol:

The author has gotten rich and famous without attaining a speck of subtlety. A character never just stumbles into blackness. It must be inky blackness. A character never just listens in shock. He listens in utter shock.

And consider this fraught interior monologue by the head of the Capitol Police: “Chief Anderson wondered when this night would end. A severed hand in my Rotunda? A death shrine in my basement? Bizarre engravings on a stone pyramid? Somehow, the Redskins game no longer felt significant.

Late night Peace Prize humor:

+ "Conservatives say the award represents everything they stand against: black people, foreigners, and peace." --Bill Maher

+ "Obama said he will attend the ceremony in Oslo if he's not too busy with the two wars he's conducting." --Bill Maher

+ "Congratulations to Barack Obama -- he has won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. Apparently, the Nobel committee wanted to recognize the president's fine work in bringing peace to a black professor and a white cop through the strategic use of beer. " --Jay Leno

+ "President Obama said he was humbled to win the prize. Not as humble as he was when Rio got the Olympics. But still humble." --Jay Leno

+ "President Obama said he will go to Oslo, Norway to collect the award. Roman Polanski said, 'It's a trick -- don't go; you'll be arrested.'" --Jay Leno

+ "That's pretty amazing, winning the Nobel Peace Prize. Ironically, his biggest accomplishment as president so far: winning the Nobel Peace Prize." --Jay Leno

This just in:

Obama wins the Heisman Trophy after watching a college football game.

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 . You can't click on my email address. You have to re-type it . This protects me from software scanning the Internet for email addresses to spam. I have no role in choosing the Google ads on this site. Thus I cannot endorse, though some look interesting. If you click on a link, Google may send me money. Please note I'm not suggesting you do. That money, if there is any, may help pay Michael's business school tuition. Read more about Google AdSense, click here and here.