September 18, 2014

Stock Picks–Sept. 18, 2014

Category: Money & Investments — jerry @ 12:02 pm

Well, after a dearth of picks the last time I looked (August 27th), I found several this time around:

First up, I’ll be taking a half (limited confidence) position in both JMP Group Inc. (JMP), which is in the investment banking industry, and REX American Resources Corporation (REX), which is in the ethanol business, and which I actually purchased once before a couple of years ago, although I don’t recall how I did–I think pretty well.

I’m also going to take a full position in Alaska Air Group, Inc. (ALK), hoping to be able to get cheap airplane tickets to go watch the next Palin family brawl.

May 6, 2006

(Randomly)FROM THE ARCHIVES:
“American Idol” results get hacked

Category: Movies/TV,Technology — jerry @ 9:17 pm

This is just too cool!  Some guy has come up with software that–with the help of those who download and use it–measures the number of “busy signals” generated when people attempt to vote for their favorite contestants on “American Idol”, aggregates the data, and is able to predict with a high level of confidence who will win and who will get voted off.  (Actually, it DID mess up last week and predicted that McPhee would lose rather than Paris–they were very close in the voting). 

Wanna see who’s likely to win?  I was surprised…

August 7, 2006

(Randomly)FROM THE ARCHIVES:
James Cameron Explains the Parting of the Red Sea

Category: Movies/TV — jerry @ 8:16 pm

This is from the London Times–kind of interesting.  I can’t wait for Cameron’s documentary on t.v. this month:

Volcanic eruption ‘triggered biblical parting of Red Sea’

THE greatest story ever told has acquired a Hollywood twist. James Cameron, the director of Titanic, is the executive producer of a new documentary that claims to have uncovered fresh evidence confirming one of the most dramatic episodes in the Old Testament — the parting of the Red Sea and the Jewish exodus from Egypt.In The Exodus Decoded, a 90-minute documentary that will be shown in America this month, Cameron and Simcha Jacobovici, the Canadian film producer, claim a volcanic eruption on the Greek archipelago of Santorini triggered a chain of natural catastrophes recorded in the Bible as the 10 plagues that God visited upon Egypt as punishment for enslaving the Jews.

 

Cameron believes the parting of the Red Sea may have been a tsunami that destroyed the pharaoh’s army as it pursued the escaping Jews. The documentary claims the episode occurred not at the Red Sea but at the smaller Sea of Reeds, a marshy area at the northern end of the Gulf of Suez. An underwater earthquake may have released poisonous gases that turned the waters red.

Jacobovici said “the common wisdom is there isn’t a single piece of archeological evidence backing up the biblical story of the exodus”. Jewish scholars have reluctantly concurred that an episode central to their faith — commemorated each year at Passover — may never have taken place.

Yet Cameron and Jacobovici claim to have unearthed more than a dozen archeological relics that suggest the exodus took place three centuries earlier than biblical scholars estimate. By reinterpreting artwork at museums in Luxor, Cairo, Athens and elsewhere, Jacobovici dates the exodus to around 1500BC.

That was about the time when some geologists believe the Santorini volcano, 400 miles north of Egypt, erupted in the eastern Mediterranean. Scientists and historians have long speculated that the 10 “plagues” suffered by Egypt might have been linked in a “domino theory” of natural causes.

The documentary’s website argues that a series of earthquakes may have “destabilised the entire Nile Delta system and resulted in part of the delta sliding off the African continental shelf”. This would have raised the level of land around the Sea of Reeds, believed to have been saltwater swamps around El Balah, the now extinct lake.

“In other words, the sea parted,” the website says. “Water would have cascaded from higher ground to lower ground . . . creating dry land on which the Israelites could cross. This event would also have caused an enormous ‘backsplash’ of water, a veritable tsunami. If the waves went a mere seven miles inland they would have engulfed the Egyptian army.”

The Exodus producers believe the waters were turned red by chemicals released by underwater tremors. Something similar happened to the lakes in Cameroon in 1986. If the waters were poisoned, amphibians would hop ashore, producing the biblical plague of frogs. When the frogs died, insects would have bred on their bodies leading to plagues of locusts, fleas and lice.

They in turn would have spread disease to humans, the plague of boils, and animals, the plague of dying livestock. They would also have threatened crops, forcing the Egyptians to store grain which might have then turned mouldy. Contaminated food might account for the plague of deaths among first-born Egyptian males. Weather conditions spawned by the eruption might also have caused the plagues of hailstorms and darkness.

“It’s individual pieces that start to form a compelling pattern,” said Cameron.

 

 

August 27, 2014

Stock Picks–Aug. 27, 2014

Category: Money & Investments — jerry @ 11:02 am

I think I’ve only done this once before, but…

Sitting it out for a few weeks.

Nothing showed up on my screen that I want to buy.

I’m just going to hold on to what I’ve got.

Call it My August Vacation, I guess.

Good luck!

August 6, 2014

Stock Pick–Aug. 6, 2014

Category: Money & Investments — jerry @ 11:29 am

Ouch! Taking a hit lately, but I keep on plugging.

Today I have two selections: Appliance Recycling Centers of America Inc. (ARCI), which apparently recycles appliances. A noble pursuit.

And BBVA Banco Franc (BFR), which provides financial services in Argentina–to the extent that Argentina HAS “financial services”. They defaulted a week ago and their market tumbled some 8%–making this a fairly risky pick, as so many of mine are.

The market is a little nervous-making these days, so…Good Luck!!

July 17, 2014

Stock Pick–July 17, 2014

Category: Money & Investments — jerry @ 1:36 pm

I’m going to jump back into AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. (AFSI), which I bought in July, 2010, and sold a couple of years later, pretty much doubling my money. It has kept running up (me missing most of it) and now is back on my screen, so I guess I’ll try, try again.

Good luck!

June 25, 2014

Stock Picks–June 4, 2014

Category: Money & Investments — jerry @ 12:24 pm

Just one pick this time around: Modine Manufacturing Company (MOD).

They manufacture “heat exchangers” for vehicles.

Cool…

Anyway, they have a really low P/E ratio–which I always like, although that can also be a sign of something…wrong.

So, good luck!

And Happy Investing!

June 4, 2014

Stock Picks–June 4, 2014

Category: Money & Investments — jerry @ 12:45 pm

Three picks today–I’ll be taking positions in each one. First up is Omega Protein Corporation (OME), which makes–you guessed it–food supplements featuring Omega-3 fish oil. Good for your heart AND (hopefully) for your portfolio.

My second pick is Moneygram International Inc. (MGI), which is in the money laundering transfer business. They’ve been around since 1926 (old school) but are apparently dabbling a bit in “Bitcoin”. I would generally run away screaming from anything “Bitcoin”, but I don’t think the company actually speculates in those silly things themselves, but might make their transfer possible. Don’t know. (Today’s primary investment tip: “Run away screaming from anything ‘Bitcoin’!”)

And lastly, I’ll be taking a position in Warren Resources Inc. (WRES), as I think I’m a little light in the oil industry and this one looks interesting. (Today’s secondary investment tip: “Don’t confuse fish oil with petroleum oil!”)

May 14, 2014

Stock Picks–May 14, 2014

Category: Money & Investments — jerry @ 12:38 pm

I’m revisiting an old Chinese stock I purchased back in 2008 and quadrupled my money in. For want of finding anything better, I’m going to get back in on China Automotive Systems Inc. (CAAS).

This despite having recently lost my shirt on another Chinese stock recommended here about a year ago which recently had its trading suspended: Lihua International, Inc. (LIWA). According to a recent story about that stock, the company “…made false and/or misleading statements and/or failed to disclose that: (i) the Company underwent a significant downturn in its business beginning in late 2012; (ii) the production activities of Lihua decreased in 2013 and nearly stopped after January 31, 2014; (iii) the Company’s warehouse was seized by a court in the People’s Republic of China; and (iv) one of the defendants is being investigated by Chinese police for larceny after attempting to move inventory.” Ouch!

Better luck this time.

April 23, 2014

Stock Picks–April 23, 2014

Category: Money & Investments — jerry @ 12:00 pm

Two picks today, only one of them evil.

First up, is American Equity Investment Life Holding Co. (AEL), which I actually recommended here once in 2007 and which, as I recall, I subsequently lost money on. Better luck this time.

The evil one–especially since I already own a competitor, recommended here back last Halloween–is good old Smith and Wesson (SWHC). I guess I’m figuring that yeah, I’m a good old liberal anti-gun person, but–a buck’s a buck.

Good luck, and let’s hope that if we lose money on one of these it’s Smith and Wesson…