Harry Newton's In Search of The Perfect Investment
Newton's In Search Of The Perfect Investment. Technology Investor.
8:30 AM Monday, November 7, 2005:
The Journal today speaks of a fourth quarter rally. It will happen because
it most always has:
Why do stocks rise in the fourth quarter? Says the Journal, "Some think
it is a holdover from days when farmers deposited money in banks after harvests.
Others say it is anticipation of the January flow of retirement money into stocks.
Still others say it is because many companies book most of their sales and profits
in the fourth quarter, as clients buy ahead of the new year."
Today's USAToday is worried about earnings, "Already 61 members
of the Standard & Poor's 500 index have warned they won't earn as much in
the fourth quarter as Wall Street forecasted, Thomson Financial says. That's
nearly three times the number saying earnings would be better than expected.
That's a concerning fact if you consider last year at this time there were only
1.8 warnings for every positive outlook."
Despite the warnings, says USAToday, S&P 500 companies are still
expected to post 14.5% growth in the fourth quarter and 14% in
the first quarter, says Howard Silverblatt at S&P. In fact, the estimate
for fourth-quarter growth is actually 0.8 percentage points higher now
than it was in August.
At our weekend
College retreat, the president of the College told us he had noticed a decline
in parent income as shown on college admission applications. He was worried
about what higher energy and higher food prices might do to the family budget.
seems in order. Companies are not stupid. They see tightening family incomes
and they'll tighten operating budgets.
TiVo has a little new appeal: It has new management. It has some
new ideas -- teaming up with Yahoo. It will soon announce some neat new products.
The best news is that Hollywood and the network broadcasters are no longer the
intimidating, debilitating force on TiVo it has been. What with
its moves with Apple movies, you can smell change coming to Hollywood. To my
mind, TiVo is a much better delivery and sales vehicle for Hollywood movies
to search your "desktop." Once "desktop"
was your PC's desktop, i.e. its opening screen. Now it's everything on
your hard disk. Every Internet search engine company -- from Google to Microsoft
to Yahoo-- is now fielding a search engine for your hard disk. The idea is to
find stuff inside your files. Windows doesn't do that. It barely lets
you find stuff by their name.
You can survive without these desktop search tools -- if you're disciplined
about where you put stuff on your hard disk. They are useful if you're
increasingly frustrated that you can't find things as fast as you would like.
1. Google, Yahoo and Microsoft's search engines are first generation. There's
a lot wrong with them. To wit, they offer few options, for example, what you
can and can't index. None find everything. Most don't highlight what you're
looking for, i.e. yellow marker it.
2. All search engines need to index what they search. Indexing takes time, sometimes
several hours. The resulting index takes up hard disk space. But the good news
is that they only index when your PC is idle.
installed all three. I'm not impressed with any of three to keep them around.
The simplest is Microsoft MSN Search. Get
it here. My preference is a commercially available product called dtSearch.
Buying it will cost you $199. (Google's, Microsoft's and Yahoo's are free.)
You can make dtSearch do a lot more. And it highlights inside the file what
it finds. This feature alone saves huge time. You can install a 30-day evaluation
copy of dtSearch. Click here.
French have a problem.
The news: Rioting across France hit
a new peak with more than 1,400 vehicles burned in an 11th night of unrest,
as youths fired birdshot at police and hurled Molotov cocktails at churches,
schools and a daycare center.
The problem: Young people in the poor neighborhoods incubating the violence
complain that police harassment is mainly to blame. "If you're treated
like a dog, you react like a dog," said Mr. Diallo of Clichy-sous-Bois,
whose parents came to France from Mali decades ago. The youths have singled
out the French interior minister, Nicolas Sarkozy, complaining about his zero-tolerance
anti-crime drive and dismissive talk. (He famously called troublemakers in the
poor neighborhoods dregs and ruffians.)
Unless there is a big change in attitude and policy, the situation will
get worse and this type of thing will become regular, though on a smaller scale.
New York Times articles have it right, says my Paris lawyer friend, "This
is like 60s in US, except that France isn't prepared to confront its own racism."
doesn't Costco sell? In between warming trays, waffle makers and
crock pots, you'll also find...
Greetings from midstate New York: I took
this photo early Sunday morning 300 yards from my midstate new York country
house. It was blissful.
I took the photo with my new Canon SD450, which NewEgg is now selling
for less than I paid for it on eBay. It's $299. Shipping is only $5.95. Click
here. I paid a total of $349. Idiot me.
story of the superb Italian cookies
An elderly Italian man lay dying in his bed. While suffering the
agonies of impending death, he suddenly smelled the aroma of his favorite Italian
anisette sprinkle cookies wafting up the stairs. Gathering his remaining strength,
he lifted himself from the bed. He slowly made his way out of the bedroom, and
with even greater effort, gripping the railing with both hands, he crawled downstairs.
With labored breath, he leaned against the door frame, gazing into the kitchen.
Where, if not for death's agony, he would have thought himself already in heaven,
for there, spread out on waxed paper on the kitchen table were literally hundreds
of his favorite anisette sprinkled cookies.
Was it heaven?
Or was it one final act of heroic love from his devoted wife of sixty years?
Mustering one great final effort, he threw himself towards the table, landing
on his knees in a crumpled posture. His lips parted. The wondrous taste of the
cookie was already in his mouth.
The aged and withered
hand trembled on its way to a cookie at the edge of the table, when it was suddenly
smacked with a spatula by his wife.....
"Back off!" she said, "They're for the funeral."
+ Dumb reasons we hold losing stocks. Click
+ How my private equity fund is doing. Click
+ Blackstone private equity funds. Click
+ 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 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 . You can't
click on my email address. You have to re-type it . This protects me from software
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here and here.