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Another day poorer. But not deeper in debt.

The song is Tennessee Ernie Ford’s Sixteen Tons:

Some people say a man is made outta mud
A poor man’s made outta muscle and blood
Muscle and blood and skin and bones
A mind that’s a-weak and a back that’s strong

You load sixteen tons, what do you get
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don’t you call me ’cause I can’t go
I owe my soul to the company store

I was born one mornin’ when the sun didn’t shine
I picked up my shovel and I walked to the mine
I loaded sixteen tons of number nine coal
And the straw boss said “Well, a-bless my soul”

You load sixteen tons, what do you get
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don’t you call me ’cause I can’t go
I owe my soul to the company store

I don’t borrow money. That’s Rule Number One in this awful market — see my previous column in which I fetail the reasons for the bear market. Click here.

Rule Number Two: Sell stocks whose stories have changed. To wit:

+ Apple. No longer releasing iPhone sale numbers. Big supplier said its biggest customer (most likely Apple) had cut its orders.

+ Boeing. I really don’t like what’s going on with the new 737 and its weird electronics. Lion Air lost 189 people. That’s a lot of people because of Boeing’s messed-up electronics.

+ Goldman Sachs and Malayasia. Go figure that mess out.

+ Facebook, its arrogance, its employee unhappiness and sundry and many regulatory disasters.

+ GE and its unfolding mess.

In short, don’t sit there and says “This will all blow over.” It clearly will — at some time.

But every time “it blows over,” a new set of leaders emerges. For example my recent recommendation LADR is doing just handsomely. Zoetis (ZTS) is also doing well.

I’ve been closely following 200-day moving averages on many stocks. And on many stocks the latest stock price has now dropped below the 200-day moving average. Here’s an example of Amazon over the past two years:

Some people say Sell when it dips below its 200-day moving average. Others say Buy.

I suspect Amazon may be ready to buy now.

The big dampener on the market is hedge funds selling because of investor redemptions. Hedge funds have done horribly of late — and the last few years. Index funds have done better and are much cheaper. Hedge funds are another area where things have drastically changed. I suspect hedge fund selling won’t be over until mid-December.

Useful (?) information 

+ My sister just sold her house in Australia. Nice return: She lived in it rent-free for 26 years. The CAGR was 8.33%. The whole deal was tax-free — it being her primary home. Better than a sharp stick in the eye. Better than most hedge funds. And than any bond she could have bought! Good deal, Barbara.

+ I have an iPhone with Verizon as the carrier. Sadly, many voicemail messages don’t appear on the phone. I don’t know why, nor how to fix what Apple calls “Visual VoiceMail.” I was alerted to the problem when my iPhone said voicemail was 98% full — but I could see only three messages on the phone.

My solution:

— Dial *86. Put in your password and listen to your messages the old fashioned way. I had over 35 messages in the system which were NOT on my iPhone. Go figure!

+ Something is wrong with Spectrum’s Internet service. Until they get it fixed, make sure you SAVE your cloud work every minute or two. I am not impressed with their “service.” I am impressed with their avarice. Since they took over Time Warner, my monthly bill has risen more than three times.

Good news, of sorts?

November 15, 2018; The BBC reported that Japan’s new cyber-security minister, 68-year-old Yoshitaka Sakurada,

admitted to a committee of lawmakers that he has never used a computer. No pictures of him with an abacus are available. Hang around. I’ll get one.

There’s hope for us all:

Harry Newton, who’s in Portland, Oregon for Eleanor’s fifth birthday and Peter’s two and something birthday:

The secret of their good health?

Off to Grandparents Day today. Eat your heart out that you never went to a school as fantastic as Eleanor goes to. They have pine trees on campus that gotta be 100 feet high.

You can listen to Sixteen Tons here. 

It’s blue skies and over 60 in Portland. Miracles happen.

  • J. Browser

    Harry, you’re not a good investor.