Harry Newton's In Search of The Perfect Investment
Newton's In Search Of The Perfect Investment. Technology Investor.
8:30 AM EST, Thursday, July 19: Wall
Street is hoping the Fed will begin to lower interest rates. This will make
it cheaper for you and I, and businesses to borrow, thus boosting profits and
stock prices. It's not happening soon. The Fed is obsessed with inflation --
that's actually its key mandate (aka obsession). It's spooked by possible inflation
from stuff like high energy prices and a tight labor market (i.e.
too many of us demanding a raise).
Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke told Congress yesterday:
the level of resource utilization relatively high and with a sustained moderation
in inflation pressures yet to be convincingly demonstrated, the FOMC has consistently
stated that upside risks to inflation are its predominant policy concern."
disappointment over no early interest won't affect the good earnings news. That
will determine share prices far more than fantasizing over interest drops.
My son's Excel brilliance needs help: I forgot
to mention yesterday that, to get the IRR function working in Excel,
you need to install the Analysis ToolPak. It's free, but Microsoft doesn't
load it into Excel out of the box. (Don't ask why, because I don't know why.)
Read further. Click
here. Go back to yesterday's
column and follow the bouncing ball. The IRR (internal rate of return)
function in Excel is the best investment tool ever created. Trust me.
Catastrophe health insurance: My
concept: I pay for everything until I get hit by a bus, or like. I asked readers
for advice. Sample responses. (This is an ongoing research project). Emai me
if you can help.
From Don Cummins:
"I have a health management account with
Golden Rule, $10,000 deductible.....works great."
did some Internet checking on this. The page is "Heath Plans with High
Deductibles." Read it
"I use one hospital & affiliated docs in my area for all
major elective things. I asked my internist to ask the hospital how much of
a discount could I get if I had a pre-arranged agreement to pay cash for everything
and not use insurance for anything. He said the hospital president said they
could do about a 30% discount. I recently had some significant procedures and
I checked what the usual insurance disallowance was and it was about 30%. I
confirmed this with a third party. You may want to ask about the same thing.
I expect to lose
health insurance coverage in less than two years and I may go this route. I
will be checking with the hospital insurance people about details and about
catastrophic coverage next Thursday. Ill let you know if I get anything
McChesney: And this is a theme I'm hearing: Negotiate for discounts.
His Aetna plan supplements Medicare.
"This (Aetna) plan negotiates incredible discounts of about 40-65% on lab
tests (at Quest, no less) and similar discounts from physicians. If you have
no insurance, YOU pay the full price."
From Dan Critchett:
"Try Blue-Cross Blue-Shield for catastrophe insurance. While self-employed,
I paid only $85 a month for hospitalization, accident, surgery, and other similar
and shopping abroad is not cheap: The American
dollar has fallen into the toilet, making hotels and things like food overseas
extraordinarily expensive. $10 for a glass of Coke, etc. This may not
be the summer for European travel. Croatia
is cheap. Alaska ain't bad, either.
One dumb idiot: Dow Jones Director Faces Civil Charges:
Securities and Exchange Commission intends to file civil charges against Dow
Jones director David Li in connection with an unfolding insider-trading case.
Mr. Li, chairman and chief executive of Bank of East Asia, has received a notice
indicating that the SEC plans to recommend filing civil charges against him.
As a Dow Jones board member he is often privy to inside information and is connected
through business and social relationships to a family member of the Hong Kong
couple whom the SEC charged this year with insider trading of Dow Jones shares.
The SEC filed civil charges against Kan King Wong and his wife, Charlotte Ka
On Wong Leung, in May They bought 415,000 Dow Jones shares two weeks before
Rupert Murdoch's $5 billion takeover offer for the company became public. The
Dow Jones board of directors voted to approve Mr. Murdoch's bid last night.
Final approval hinges on the Bancroft family.
would you have done? Randy Cohen writes a column called
Here's the question:
ago when I confirmed a new patients pregnancy, she burst into tears. Her
husband had had a vasectomy; her pregnancy was a result of a brief affair; she
would not consider abortion. She begged me to keep her secret for the sake of
her children and marriage. When unexpectedly confronted by her husband, I lied,
saying his vasectomy must have failed. The marriage survived, and I believe
my lie was justified. Was it
Stop. Don't read
further. Think. What would you have done? Lie or... ? Here's Randy's answer:
there would be no opportunity to lie. Medical ethics compels you to preserve
a patients in this case, the wifes privacy (even if,
as I do, you think your patient was wrong to deceive her husband). Certainly
you would not have dropped by the house to set the guy straight.
But a quick
decision was forced on you. And while your motives were admirable, you should
not have lied, as I suspect you know: thats why this has stayed with
Your lie deprived
the husband of important information about the child he would be expected
to raise. (What if you inspired him to sue the physician who performed his
vasectomy?) And what of the childs interest in an honest account of
his or her parentage? And has the biological father no standing here?
lie furthered the couples building a life together on a falsehood. If
the husbands suspicions returned, he could have gotten a blood test.
Or the truth might have come out through gossip, a medical emergency or the
boyfriends reappearance. If the husband was angry that day, think how
he might feel later.
should have gently but firmly put the husband off and helped your patient
think through the implications of dishonesty. She might have persisted in
her deception, and the physician who performed the vasectomy might have abetted
her lie, but that is beyond your control.
continues to explode: From Bloomberg:
grew at the fastest pace in 12 years in the second quarter and inflation there
surged, prompting speculation the government will allow quicker currency appreciation
and raise interest rates. Growth was powered by investment in factories and
real estate, funded by record exports, that the government has been unable
to cool with two rate increases this year and restrictions on bank lending.
piece of perfect logic:
A man wonders if having sex on the Sabbath is a sin because he is not sure if
sex is work or play. So he goes to a Priest and asks for his opinion on this
the Bible, the Priest says, " My son, after an exhaustive search, I am
positive that sex is work and is therefore not permitted on Sundays."
The man thinks:
" What does a priest know about sex?" So he goes to a Minister, who
after all is a married man and experienced in this matter. He queries the Minister
and receives the same reply. Sex is work and therefore not for the Sabbath!
Not pleased with the reply, he seeks out the ultimate authority: a man of thousands
of years tradition and knowledge.
He goes to a Rabbi.
The Rabbi ponders the question, then states, " My son, sex is definitely
The man replies, "Rabbi, how can you be so sure when so many others tell
me sex is work?"
The Rabbi softly
speaks, "If sex were work, my wife would have the maid do it ."
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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