Harry Newton's In Search of The Perfect Investment
Newton's In Search Of The Perfect Investment. Technology Investor.
8:30 AM EST Tuesday, November 28, 2006: Stockmarkets
fell sharply yesterday. S&P 500 was down 1.4%, Dow (30 big stocks) was down
1.3%. Nasdaq (heavy on technology) was down 2.2%. And the Russell 2000 (smaller
stocks) was down 2.6%. Some say this is the beginning of a big fall.
Henry McVey, chief
United States investment strategist at Morgan Stanley, says: Youve
been up 131 days without a 1 percent correction. Thats just unnatural
for equity markets."
The economy is slowing down. The gross domestic product grew at 5.6%
annual pace in the first quarter but only 1.6% in the third . Wal-Mart
said its November sales would fall 0.1% in November. That news spooked
the market. Wal-Mart is America's biggest retailer, with its own problem.
Where are markets going short-term? Your guess is as good as mine.
investment vehicle: Office Condominiums: Want
to own part of a big downtown office building? Buy an office condominium. They're
the latest rage. They offer all the advantages (and disadvantages) of owning
Upside capital appreciation.
+ Decent rate of return if you find a decent tenant.
+ Ability to refinance -- hence the ability to pull most of your investment
out long before you sell it.
Housing is picking up: My
friends say the summer/fall lag in housing/apartment sales is over. They're
seeing sales pick up -- not super fast. But they're picking up. And friends
who condo-ed several apartment buildings earlier this year are breathing a collective
sigh of relief. The good news is we Americans still are having babies and people
keep immigrating here -- despite us being infidels. And these new Americans
got to live somewhere.
awful is floating around: It makes you feel awful for several days.
+ Get a flu shot, especially if you're between 60 and death (like me).
+ Wash your hands regularly.
+ Stay rested. Naps in the morning, in the afternoon and early evening are good.
+ Take Zithromax in the Z-Pak when you get sick. This antibiotic always works
for me. But ask your doctor. Be wary about taking it if you take other pills.
less: Personally I feel better when I eat less
and more often. I now routinely don't order main courses at restaurants.
I eat only appetizers. I'll eat an apple or a handful of nuts and raisins between
bets the farm: Ford has basically pledged every
decent asset it has to raise $18
Not a pretty chart
Yesterday it mortgaged
nearly all its domestic assets its plants, office buildings, patents
and trademarks along with stakes in Ford Credit and Volvo, to raise the
$18 billion. This is a huge gamble. My friends with a Ford dealership
say the only things selling these days are Ford trucks -- with the F150
being most popular.
The Ford F150, a big mother.
Ford will use
the $18 billion to to eliminate more than 40,000 jobs and close more than a
If that doesn't
work, it's find a buyer (unlikely) or go bankrupt. Ford has done some really
stupid things in the past, like buy:
+ Aston Martin, and
+ Land Rover.
I have not been even remotely attracted to a Ford product in 30-years. My last
Ford was a 1965 Mustang.
The benefits of religion:
A blond cowgirl, who is visiting Tennessee from Texas, walks into
a bar and orders three mugs of Bud. She sits in the back of the room, drinking
a sip out of each one in turn. When she finishes them, she comes back to the
bar and orders three more.
approaches and tells the cowgirl, "You know, a mug goes flat after I draw
it. It would taste better if you bought one at a time."
The cowgirl replies,
"Well, you see, I have two sisters. One is in Australia, the other is in
Dublin. When we all left our home in Texas, we promised that we'd drink this
way to remember the days when we drank together. So I'm drinking one beer for
each of my sisters and one for myself.
admits that this is a nice custom and leaves it there.
The cowgirl becomes
a regular in the bar and always drinks the same way. She orders three mugs and
drinks them in turn. One day, she comes in and only orders two mugs. All the
regulars take notice and fall silent.
When she comes
back to the bar for the second round, the bartender says, "I don't want
to intrude on your grief, but wanted to offer my condolences on your loss."
The cowgirl looks
quite puzzled for a moment, then a light dawns in her eyes and she laughs. "Oh,
no, everybody's just fine," she explains, "it's just that my husband
and I joined the Baptist Church and I had to quit drinking. Hasn't affected
my sisters though."
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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