By SA For FAs :
Trump Tax Reform
"The TCJA is far from my preferred tax reform. I give it a B-. Still, it has the potential to raise investment, output, and wages. And, when correctly analyzed, it's certainly fair based on economics' standard fairness rule - inequality in the distribution of spending." ( Laurence Kotlikoff )
"Today, with increasing price inflation and the Fed's gradual withdrawal of monetary accommodation, markets have returned to higher, more normal levels of volatility than had been prevalent in the recent past. This might be considered an ideal time for diversification, but unfortunately, we are seeing a potential unwinding of a relationship that has helped asset allocators for years: negative correlations between stocks and bonds." ( Neuberger Berman )
The Dollar And Interest Rates
"Mr. Trump appears to favor a weaker dollar and may well provide more verbal intervention should the dollar resume its climb. In that sense, Mr. Trump has introduced [a] Trump put. But why is it that a comment by the President moves currency markets? Partially, this may be because he has shown a willingness to use executive power to interfere with trade." ( Axel Merk )
ETF Sector Trends
"Ron DeLegge talks with Dan Dolan at SectorSPDR.com about sector investing trends + upcoming changes to the S&P 500." ( Indexing Investing Show podcast)
"The 25% decline seemed excessive based on things I have seen in my career but again I am not a buyer on the news, this post is more like don't freak out if you have a lot of exposure, I don't think it is going to zero…" ( Roger Nusbaum )
" Long-time Seeking Alpha contributor Montana Skeptic posted what appears likely to be his final comment on our site. If you haven't read it, the crux of the matter is that by leveraging doxxing efforts of others, from different sites, Tesla ( TSLA ) CEO Elon Musk contacted the author's employer and threatened to engage counsel and sue our pseudonymous contributor. " ( George Moriarty )
Thought For The Day
Many years ago, in a meeting with the CEO and chief marketing officer of a large brokerage firm, I let my interlocutors know that their former media rep had acted in a crooked way when dealing with the business magazine I then edited. Rather than simply facilitate the conveyance of information about his firm, he consistently went above me or beneath me in a manner aimed at throwing his firm's weight to influence coverage. When he went to higher ups, his implicit message was that he was representing an advertiser (and we were thus risking revenue by not taking him seriously), while he tried to intimidate more junior staff to do his bidding. The firm's CEO's reply: "Why didn't you tell me while this was happening? I would have fired him on the spot."
I knew from past experience that I needed to handle the matter myself. I was a big boy and didn't let this jerk influence our coverage. I'd seen this sort of thing through my years in the media. Most folks in the business world don't aggressively seek undue influence, though enough do. I recall one exec at a large brokerage firm who nonchalantly asked me to kill a story, which of course I didn't; and I recall a small brokerage firm that was quite open in pressing for a quid pro quo relationship - advertising for coverage. Few are those, like the CEO of our story, who are actively ethical in this fashion. And few are the media executives who won't be swayed by such pushiness.
That is why I am quite fortunate to be working for Seeking Alpha. As my boss, George Moriarty, went on to say in the above-linked article about Tesla's apparent attempt to silence criticism of its company, Seeking Alpha is committed to "p roviding the soapbox for bulls and bears on this, and every, stock ." George also clarified our policy toward privacy violations: " Zero Tolerance. Anyone that participates in doxxing on this site is blocked, immediately. The risks to personal safety are too great for there to be exceptions, so be aware that if you share an individual's private information on our site, you will be blocked. "
That said, what about the alleged corporate bully in this story, Tesla's CEO Elon Musk, who according to Montana Skeptic , managed to uncover his identity, then reach out - not to him, but to his employer, to threaten a lawsuit? In some of the media coverage I've seen of this story, a Tesla spokesman was quoted as saying that Montana Skeptic's boss " is a longtime Tesla supporter and was one of the first to purchase a Model S. " Whoop-de-doo. To my mind, that's corporate - speak for neither confirming nor denying the allegation but keeping the implicit legal threat alive.
That is simply an insufficient response to a charge of this nature. Elon Musk needs to take a public stand on this public issue. His spokesman's comment implies that he did have a conversation with Montana Skeptic's boss. Musk needs to set the record straight on this, clarifying the nature of this conversation. And if Musk does not answer this question, I am calling on his boss - Tesla's board and its shareholders - to demand it of him.
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See also Lattice Semiconductor Corporation 2018 Q2 - Results - Earnings Call Slides on seekingalpha.com