Harry Newton's In Search of The Perfect Investment
Newton's In Search Of The Perfect Investment. Technology Investor.
8:30 AM Friday, August 19, 2005: I'm
in San Diego. Alarm went off at 3:30 AM local time, but I didn't. See you Monday
when I'm back in New York. Here's yesterday's column in case you missed it.
Apologies for sleeping in. I should have a better excuse in future. The dog
ate my column?
AM Thursday, August 18, 2005: Chalk one up for the
boy genius. On Monday I said sell oil. Yesterday it fell $2.83 a barrel
to $63.25, much below the $67 it was when I said SELL. I got one right.
in San Diego. Neat weather. Neat town. Totally horrible traffic -- the flip
side of all those people buying all those new homes (aka the housing boom.)
JetBlue (JBLU) was wonderful for the trip out. Best part was watching
Federer and Safin play tennis live on ESPN2. Brilliant idea -- live TV on planes.
The plane was 100% full, like most JetBlue flights these days. That doesn't
mean you should buy their stock. High jet fuel hurts.
My son, Michael, 23, says "Sell Whole Foods (WFMI) because it's
now way overpriced." Like all youth, he has a short attention span.
Lately, instead of chasing girls, he's been reading books on value investing.
No grandchildren for me. Just advice.
Imaging (TPTH) got an FDA approval this week: Yippee. TriPath said
it received U.S. regulatory approval for a breast cancer screening process using
technology from Ventana Medical Systems. (VMSI). For more, click
Intelligent credit cards: Yesterday
I wrote I'd given up on my Citibank Visa card because it charges an annual fee
and gives me airline miles I can never use. Michael, my son, discovered the
American Express Blue Cash card which was free and delivered a 5%
cash discount on some purchases. Cash is better than useless miles. Click
here. Many readers have their
+ I have a CitiBank MasterCard that does the same rebate as your Amex Card and
it is accepted almost everywhere. It pays 5% on gas, drugs and groceries and
1% on everything else. It also does not charge a yearly fee. -- Dick Hudgens.
+ Hi Harry: I agree, give up the special miles or points promotions for
stuff you don't want: hold out for cash. But you need not be so desperate as
to use the seldom accepted American Express card. Citibank MasterCard has a
wonderful cash back feature. You get a minimum 1% on everything, at least 2%
on gas, groceries and drug store purchases, and special programs up the 2% to
5% cash back. The calendar year maximum reward is $300 which we hit a few months
ago. Its easy if you charge everything at gas stations, grocery stores and drug
stores. When you hit the max at Citibank MC, switch to the same bank's AT&T
Universal Card (also a MasterCard) to get another $300. They are no fee cards.
The trick is to have them on auto pay from your main asset master account
so there is no chance of a late payment. We never carry a balance on a charge
card, but we have been overheard to say we have "maxed out our Master card."
If they only knew. -- Dave and Harriet Havanich.
+ AT&T Universal Card, it is not AT&T any longer it is really a
Citicorp card. It is a MasterCard, accepted everywhere, gives you points just
like American Express Blue Card, limit 75,000 points per calendar year. It's
fantastic, if you can get past the fact that the card says AT&T. -- Tony
of Life: Honey works.
Stupid stories work. Keep talking. Items:
+ I got $100 off my Hyatt hotel room by begging.
+ I got $250 off my new Verizon Blackberry by explaining I couldn't face the
humiliation at home if I paid more than my son paid.
is negotiable. Repeat after me, "I can negotiate anything."
Store this in the part of your brain that has learned to say NO, thank you.
of Email Life:
Never send someone a rude email.
2. Emails are for compliments and for confirming.
2. Limit each email to only one topic.
You must check every bill: Your salesman
may agree to something. But his company's computer won't. Check. Check. Check.
Read my lips. Most bills have errors.
Travel Tip: I spent $10 on
a broadband connection in my Hyatt hotel room. It works for surfing.
But for email, you need an SMTP address. Call their "help"
line. The SMTP is never on the hotel literature. Hyatt's is mail.guestmail.net.
+ Camtasia Studio lets you publish Microsoft PowerPoint presentations
as Web presentations. I haven't tried this one but it looks really neat. Better
yet, it's free. Click
+ Microsoft Outlook files can grow as big as 4GB. You can also
open several simultaneously. That means you use Outlook as a gigantic filing
cabinet. Once a week, you must compact your Outlook file and run the "Inbox
Repair Tool," also called Scanpst.exe. Search for it on your hard
drive and set up a shortcut to it.
have plummeted in price: The Mag Innovision monitors I have on my
desk are now less than half what I paid for them. There are huge LCD
bargains around at places like Costco and Best Buy. Buy from a
really reputable place. These things don't travel well. I have three. One of
them arrived busted because of lousy packaging and had to go back.
news. We have a brain and think for ourselves: A
new study by two economics professors has found that Fox News Channel had no
detectable effect on which party people voted for, or whether they voted at
all. Why was Fox irrelevant to voter
+ People may search for television shows with a political orientation that matches
their own. In this scenario, Fox would have been preaching to the converted.
+ Watching Fox
could have confirmed both Democratic and Republican viewers' inclinations, an
effect known as confirmatory bias in psychology. Simon and Garfunkel said it
better. We have a tendency to hear what we want to hear and disregard the rest.
+ The professors' preferred explanation is that the public manages to "filter"
biased media reports.
This is the sort
of junk academic "studies" you get when economists have too much time
(and money) on their hands.
money will buy.
Two elderly residents, a man and a woman, were sitting alone in the lobby of
their nursing home one evening.
The old man looked over and said to the old lady, "I know just what you're
wanting, and for $5 I'll have sex with you right over there in that rocking
The old lady looked
surprised but didn't say a word.
The old man continued. "For $10 I'll do it with you on that nice soft sofa
over there, but for $20 I'll take you back to my room, light some candles, and
give you the most romantic evening you've ever had in your life."
The old lady still
said nothing but after a couple minutes, starts digging down in her purse. She
pulls out a wrinkled $20 bill and holds it up.
"So you want
the nice romantic evening in my room," says the old man.
she replies. "Four times in the rocking chair! NOW."
+ Manhattan Pharmaceuticals: Click
+ NovaDel Biosciences appeals. Click
+ Hana Biosciences appeals. Click
+ All turned on by biotech. Click
+ Steve Jobs Commencement Address. The text is available:
Click here. The full audio is available. Click
+ The March of the Penguins, an exquisite movie. Click
+ When to sell your stocks. Click
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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