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Harry Newton's In Search of The Perfect Investment Newton's In Search Of The Perfect Investment. Technology Investor.

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8:30 AM Friday, August 5, 2005: I should keep my mouth shut. I jinxed it. Yesterday I rejoiced that TriPath Imaging profits grew more than sevenfold during the second quarter, its revenues rose 27 percent and it boosted its earnings forecast big for 2005. Early yesterday, TriPath was up $1 to over $10. But by late afternoon it was falling and actually closed 21 cents lower. What happened? An institution presumably waited for the announcement and dumped the shares -- the classic "Sell on news." Dumb strategy. The good news is I hear there are large buyers around. I'm hanging on. The moral of this boring story is that, while you'll never get consistent returns out of investing in the stock market, you will get consistent agita.

Buying and selling interests in hedge funds: Many hedge funds are closed. Many hedge funds have long lockup periods. Hedgebay is a web site trading in hedge funds. The catch: they're non-US funds. They take a cut of 1% or so for handling the "tricky" paperwork. The Economist reports,

"As a gauge of investor sentiment, Hedgebay's listings, updated daily, can be revealing. In July, which saw the highest volume this year, funds employing long-short strategies (owning some assets outright while betting on the price of other assets to fall) attracted the highest premiums. Convertible arbitrage strategies have landed with a thud: some $61 million worth are for sale on Hedgebay against demand for only $17 million worth. A credit-arbitrage fund, hit especially hard by the junked ratings of General Motors and Ford, has $36 million in shares marked for sale, most of them at a discount. By contrast, users have posted offers for $116 million worth of European long-short equity funds, mostly at a premium, against a supply of $22 million."

I registered on Hedgebay's site this morning. They said they'd get back to me. They did. They also do domestic funds. "It's a bit trickier," they told me.

The housing boom in New York City: "From Bensonhurst to Morrisania to Flushing, new homes are going up faster now than they have in more than 30 years. In 2004, New York City approved the construction of 25,208 housing units, more than in any year since 1972, and that number is expected to be surpassed this year. Already, officials have authorized 15,870 permits. ... The mushrooming of housing development is an outgrowth of the city's decade-long population boom, low interest rates, government programs and a slide in crime. ... It has affected every borough and most neighborhoods, reshaping their physical form, ethnic makeup and collective memories." This quote from yesterday's New York Times.

What's impressed me about this boom which I've been watching intently is how it's covered everything from $50 million apartments in Manhattan to $250,000 townhouses in Brooklyn. It's covered all manner of construction and all manner of developer. I loved this picture because it shows a new six story apartment building squeezed between two story, one family homes.

65th Street in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn

To get a flavor of the boom, you must watch an audio slide show which Jennifer Steinhauer put together on New York City's housing boom. Go here and then click on the audio slide show.

Program your cell phone to call ICE: Following the disaster in London, some ambulance services have launched a "In Case of Emergency (ICE)" campaign. ICE
was thought up by an ambulance man/paramedic who found that when they went to the scenes of accidents there were always mobile phones but they didn't know which numbers to call and he thought that it would be a good idea if there was a nationally recognized name to file "emergency contact" under. The idea is that you store the word "ICE" in your mobile phone address book, and against it enter the number of the person you would want to be contacted "In Case of Emergency". For more than one contact name ICE1, ICE2, ICE3 etc. In an emergency, ambulance and hospital staff will then be able to quickly find out who your next of kin is and be able to contact them. is China's equivalent of Google: It's scheduled to begin trading today under the symbol BIDU. It was priced last night at $27, but is expected to jump. Google owns 2.6% of Baidu, which is actually profitable. The name Baidu comes from an ancient Chinese poem about a man in search of love.

For more on Baidu's story, click here.

Moses encounters reality:
Recently while going through an airport during one of his many trips, President Bush encountered a man with long gray hair, wearing a white robe, and sandals, holding a staff. President Bush went up to the man and said, "Has anyone told you that you look like Moses?"
The man never answered. He just kept staring straight ahead.
The President said, "Moses!" in a loud voice.
The man just stared ahead, never acknowledging the President.
Bush pulled a Secret Service agent aside and pointing to the robed man asked him, "Am I crazy, or does that man not look like Moses to you?"
The Secret Service agent looked at the man carefully and then agreed.
""Well," said the President, "Every time I say his name he ignores me and stares straight ahead refusing to speak. Watch! "Again the President yelled,"Moses!" and again the man ignored him.
The Secret Service agent went up to the man in the white robe and whispered, "You look just like Moses. Are you Moses?"
The man leaned over and whispered back ..
"Yes, I am Moses. However, the last time I talked to a bush I spent 40 years wandering in the desert, and ended up leading my people to the only spot in the entire middle east where there is no oil."
Recent column highlights:
+ Manhattan Pharmaceuticals: Click here.
+ NovaDel Biosciences appeals. Click here.
+ Hana Biosciences appeals. Click here.
+ All turned on by biotech. Click here.
+ Steve Jobs Commencement Address. The text is available: Click here. The full audio is available. Click here.
+ The March of the Penguins, an exquisite movie. Click here.
+ When to sell your stocks. Click here.

Harry Newton

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 scanning the Internet for email addresses to spam. I have no role in choosing the Google ads. Thus I cannot endorse any, though some look mighty interesting. If you click on a link, Google may send me money. That money will help pay Claire's law school tuition. Read more about Google AdSense, click here and here.
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