CULTURE, EDITOR'S DESK, FUNDAMENTALS, GREEDY CREEP, INVESTING, TECHNICALS, THINKING NOW

Turd Spotting. Roku. The New Cable.

JULY 5, 2019. Facebook didn’t charge you up-front. FB played your back side, the data usage shell game. Roku does both and more. Roku deceives you up-front, charges you for their device, then leverages an account and a c card to activate what you already paid for, tracks your every move, pimps you with the ads you sought to dodge, shares your personal and viewing data, and then assists others in their attempts to target and track you. Roku is the new cable, on steroids.
Free was never free and Facebook illustrated such. The old East Germany was never free and the Stasi showed that. Today many simply flip their privacy away like a cigarette butt. Years ago Zuckerberg declared blithely that “privacy is dead.” FB then created the standard of contempt for “privacy” in the digital age. None. Like Daniel Ortega he’s now on the other side of that. Whatever it takes.
Along came TiVo, and their DVR surveillance platform. TiVo brought advertisers right on to your sofa. Only one step remained. Direct surveillance. Apple’s now got that covered–auditory and visual surveillance. No? Sharp consumers found the Apple camera in their digital assistant. There’s also Mitsubishi TV. They also tell you, after you buy and install.
Is it only Us? Little things create character. Roku is dishonest, by omission. “So what?” Dishonesty displays contempt. Dishonesty in business displays contempt for both you, and the business you bring. Honesty means saying “Credit card required to activate.”
But they don’t. If Roku games you like that from the very start, what else do you think they’re willing to do? Sj shows you.
Contempt, “the feeling that a person or a thing is beneath consideration, worthless.” -Google. That’s why Sj is “Turd Spotting. Roku. The New Cable.”

Read more
EDITOR'S DESK, EDITORIAL, THINKING NOW

Theft and Tariff. Thriving This Trade War.

JUNE 15, 2019. Who doesn’t enjoy a mad swarm of bees–more than a trade war wedgie? Bees obey rules, usually. Besides, it’s hard to make sense with your unders wrapped around your chin. Trade is a fight and all fights are personal. Can anyone else hear that back-up warning beep? Once launched trade wars float forward creating some funky life all their own. Trade wars are also sort of like that guy stitch-fixed together out of spare parts by that famous German doctor. No one knows what’s coming next. They lumber and lurch clumsily crushing anything good and sensible. Soon the goal shifts to stopping the damage.
Thieves piss everyone off, with the exception of those doing the thieving. Some entities refuse anything but a boot in the ass. Ask T. May. Middle school also proved that. Such requests should be solemnly honored. Talk goes only so far.  Sometimes only a frown signifies progress. “Forced technology transfer” is not free trade, and “Joint venture partners” who systematically steal are not partners. Meanwhile the WTO has never loved America and looking to them for fairness is as effective as tossing empty pop cans.
This gargantuan pie fight mashes onward, and investors make their way through the mess. Doing so intelligently means sticking to what works. No one knows our collective future. They only pretend to. We alone hold on to our portfolio rudder. Thriving this trade war. Ultimately one truth exits. The decisions are ours.

Read more
EDITOR'S DESK, INVESTING, MONEY, THE AMERICAN DREAM, THINKING NOW

Giddy Spring Joy. Blame it on Your IRA.

APRIL 13, 2019. April brings joy. It marks a turning point. Bubbles of inspiration tickle our spirits. Why not? Well, taxes? We’re here to remind. We’re simply brimming with four joys of this new season.
Our taxes are done and with very little pain. But what pays you? Everyone get the relief of finishing.
The federal forced march toward the 15th becomes merely a memory. Repeat our move, if you haven’t already. That pays you.
Many know the abiding truth. Available to you each year, and every year there after, is a safe place from which to file. Once done, it’s forever. That’s a joy right? You can simply be there, annually, at this very time of year. Birds sing there, and lunch is always Al fresco. The service is wonderful, and cheap. For many no trading reports are required. That’s a joy, right?
The blooms of spring lead to summer and airline tickets to places worth visiting. The money you save by the above hinted move, may just pay for your trip. Raise a glass. Our four summer kick-off joys, just for you. Two will pay you all year long. Enjoy.

Read more
EDITOR'S DESK, FUNDAMENTALS, INVESTING, MONEY, THINKING NOW

Pay Yourself First. Signal To Launch.

APRIL 9, 2019. You often hear it. “It’s your money.” Is it? Only yours until you spend it. The spent becomes someone else’s. Learn to keep it, and create joy. Oops. Money doesn’t create happiness. No, it allows joy, something far superior. A thousand cappuccinos equals two shares of Amazon. More actually. Fact. Who knew? Long-time Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz. Yet living like Martin Luther during his monastic tour leads to little. Hair shirts are nonsense, and so is frittering all your hard-earned jack.
The clean soothing new car smell is outstanding. We love it, every time we load into someone else’s car. That’s because ceaseless car payments grow monastic, except for dealers and OEMs. Depreciating assets don’t pay. What does? Paying yourself first.
PYF is a skill set. No? Were it not, more people would be doing it. We pay ourselves straight off the top, like a Fa King blizzard. If you do also, you know exactly what we’re speaking of. Living better is no accident. Nor is it a money treadmill. Get your edge.
PYF is that edge. It’s about creating more than the sum of your days. Make your efforts accumulate. Again–it’s your money, and time. It’s also your life. Your name’s on all three. PYF means you’ll have more. More means you’re on your way to better. And there’s even more than that. That’s called the Gift of O. It’s simple. You can do this.
Here’s how it’s done.

Read more
FUNDAMENTALS, INVESTING, MARKETS/ECONOMY, MEDIA, Reader's Choice, TECHNICALS, THINKING NOW

Bank Shots. Rates Play Rim Protector.

APRIL, 6, 2019. Buckle your couch belts for all the excitement. It’s simultaneously time for both the Final Four, and Earnings Season. Did your bank transfer? “Survive and move on” remains the way. Please be advised. No shortage of Cinderellas or shilling money managers exists now. And once again, none will fail to foul or front for their favorite financial.
It’s make believe time all over again. Super-heated gases will leak forth from your screens. Back up., content and advertising will meld. Trash will be talked. This smear of nonsense will end only after earnings are done, the nets are cut down, or CNBC finally bloats into a purely promotional gas giant.
“We love Tech–and the financials right here.”
Goddammit. Jamie Dimon doesn’t even “like the financials right here.” “Why do you like the filthy financials?” “They’re cheap, like dirt, and they hit their fros.” Well–of course they do. What else have the banks had to do, except work their fros? NIM is nonexistent.
The banks haven’t done a goddamn thing since that guy on the $10 bill was running the Treasury. What about now? Did Wells Fargo, Chase, or Skank of America transfer to your Final Four? STOCKjAW takes a reality look, again.

Read more
CULTURE, EDITOR'S DESK, INVESTING, STOCKS, THE AMERICAN DREAM, THINKING NOW

This Bull’s Last Run?

MARCH 16, 2019. The bank engineered sub-prime mortgage melt down was ten years ago, and ten years equals one very old bull. STOCKjAW charged the desert outside Las Vegas to ponder this “late cycle” equity morass, and then the 737 Max tragedy. While trade talks lumber, our equity market suffer. While the Chinese shoot for 6%-6.5% GDP growth, our tax cut sugar-rush burns to a crisp. A recent survey of U.S. corporations reveals that 84% engaged in “no additional hiring, or capital expenditures” as a result of those massive cuts. What now?
While Europe and Asia slow we show darting sporadic cranky growth. Think Amazon and Faceplant. The bulldozer of mammoth growth we once took for granted is now firing on three cylinders and blubbing dark fits of sour smoke. And then came Ethiopia.
Even leaders run naked on this new landscape. Equity markets change–no warning. “Bam”–welcome to the NFL. Ours has. Guess what? Many of the shareholders you depend on, are rookies in this new market. All 52 cards have been tossed skyward. It’s our job to read the new patterns. Could a bucket of Martini motor lodge living help? Meanwhile, one lesson stands clear.  Look wider for your wins, and take them when offered.  Lately, “long term” means days, maybe weeks, not months or years.  

Read more
BUSINESS, INVESTING, STOCKS, TECHNICALS, THINKING NOW

TELADIVE. Thriving Teladoc’s 20% Dive.

MARCH 2, 2019. Teladoc’s been beaming the doctor and a big future to you for years. Then came a Teladive from the 20th floor for Q4. TDOC beat top and bottom lines, and posted a killer FY2018 79% revenue growth rate. How can that be ugly? It instantly produced a 20% hit to the share price. Or something did. Fugly. Simply stand back. No one catches that knife. Or do they? We did. There’s no trick to it.
The SEC mandates that companies report, but it doesn’t tell them what to say. Nor do they mandate that you tune in. You have to do that yourself. The Teladive began with a humble press release–they always do. We missed htat.
Oops. Nonetheless STOCKjAW not only survived, but thrived that pure fugly Teladive. What did we do?
Here’s a hint. Be there when your company reports, while the market’s yet open. Those edge sessions are where many of the magical moves you’re looking for happen.

Read more