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Gold surges. Russia has a vaccine, that may or may not work. Tech stocks are still tumbling. Ditto for some vaccine stocks.

If you’re healthy (though heavier) and have enough money to pay your living expenses (rent, mortgage, food) for the next 12 months, you’re doing OK.

If your family is healthy and your investments are sort of holding in and you’re not on margin, you’re doing OK.

If you’re confused as to

+ How long you’ll stay couped up?

+ If this thing will ever end?

+ Where your stocks are going?

+ Where you should be looking for new opportunities?

then join the party.

Here’s my take: If you’re young, now is the time to start your own business. I see opportunities — more than I’ve seen. They range from fixing country houses to sell to New Yorkers to consulting on fixing web sites, to scaleable cloud ventures, to starting your own AC, electrician, plumbing, construction business. My office AC has crashed – third time in two weeks.

Then there’s gold. Today’s New York Times has an article, “What is Gold’s Attraction?

It includes one paragraph that sums it all for me,

Serious investors have in the past dismissed gold as an asset that for the most part just sits there yielding nothing. In many ways, gold is like oil or iron ore or any other commodity people dig out of the ground. Most commodity prices rise and fall in cycles, gaining nothing in value over time.

But you can’t deny gold’s appeal. Here’s the last two years (to today):

Look carefully at this two-year chart. The brown top line is the gold miner Barrick Gold. Cramer loves this stock and has entertained the CEO on his show many times. The dark blue line is GLD the ETF for gold bullion.

The green line is Nasdaq, heavily weighted to tech stocks. And the bright blue line is the S&P 500.

Widely varying results.

I’ve never been a big fan of gold. I don’t own any. But Barrick the miner and gold the metal sure have done well recently.

I have no idea what to do now. Today is my third day of heavy tech stock declines.

You can read the NYTimes piece here.

Russia has a vaccine, they just announced

But it hasn’t been adequately tested. And there are fears that it may have unintended consequences.

If it does, those consequences will worsen this:

If people won’t take the vaccine, and many won’t wear masks, I hate to think where this is going.

And what effects it may have on a recovering economy.

This is getting beyond my pay grade.

Hard work pays off big-time

Every morning, the CEO of a large New York bank walks to the corner shoe shine.

He sits on the couch, examines the Wall Street Journal, and the shoeshine gives his shoes a shiny, excellent look.

One morning the shoeshine asks the Executive Director: “What do you think about the situation in the stock market?”

The Director asks: “Why are you so interested in the stockmarket?”

“I have a million dollars in your bank,” the shoeshine says, “and I’m considering investing some of the money in the capital market.”

“What your name?” asks the Director.

John Smith.

The Director arrives at the bank and asks the Manager of the Customer Department: “Do we have a client named John Smith?”

Certainly, answers the Customer Service Manager, “He is a highly esteemed customer. He has a million dollars in his account.

The Director comes out, approaches the shoeshine, and says: “Mr. Smith, I ask you this coming Monday to be the guest of honor at our board meeting and tell us the story of your life. I am sure we will have something to learn from you.

At the board meeting, the Executive Director introduces him to the board members: “We all know Mr. Smith, who makes our shoes shine in the corner; But Mr. Smith is also our esteemed customer with a million dollars in his account. I invited him to tell us the story of his life. I am sure we can learn from him.

Mr. Smith began his story: “I came to this country fifty years ago as a young immigrant from Europe with an unpronounceable name. I got off the ship without a penny. The first thing I did was change my name to Smith. I was hungry and exhausted. I started wandering around looking for a job but to no avail. Suddenly I found a coin on the sidewalk. I bought an apple. I had two options: eat the apple and quench my hunger or start a business. I sold the apple for two dollars and bought two apples with the money. I also sold them and continued in business. When I started accumulating dollars, I was able to buy a set of used brushes and shoe polish and started polishing shoes. I didn’t spend a penny on entertainment or clothing, I just bought bread and some cheese to survive. I saved penny by penny and after a while, I bought a new set of shoe brushes and ointments in different shades and expanded my clientele. I lived like a monk and saved penny by penny. After a while I was able to buy an armchair so that my clients could sit comfortably while cleaning their shoes, and that brought me more clients. I did not spend a penny on the joys of life. I kept saving every penny. A few years ago, when the previous shoeshine on the corner decided to retire, I had already saved enough money to buy his shoeshine location at this great place.

“Finally, three months ago, my sister, who was a prostitute in Chicago, passed away and left me a million dollars.”

Today’s celebration: 150 games this quarantine season

The key is to play early — start at 7:30 when we have some shade.

Maybe tomorrow, I’ll have more answers. — Harry Newton



  • Bruce Miller

    Who is this woman playing grab ass with men in politics? She goes around hugging men who are clearly above her. And worse yet she hugs a man with dementia in efforts to get him to sign over the White House to her. She knows the man love hugs and that is what got her where she is at today.