Monthly Archives: February 2008

Warren Buffett: No Foe of Sovereign Wealth Funds

Warren Buffett, in his annual letter to shareholders: There’s been much talk recently of sovereign wealth funds and how they are buying large pieces of American businesses. This is our doing, not some nefarious plot by foreign governments. Our trade … Continue reading

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Wine Datapoint of the Day

Krug’s new single-vineyard Champagne, the 1995 Clos d’Ambonnay, will sell for between $3,000 and $3,500 a bottle. And it will sell all 3,000 bottles with ease; indeed, the price will be higher on the secondary market than it is on … Continue reading

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Apple Buybacks: Still a Bad Idea

Back in December, I wasn’t a fan of Apple buying back its stock. I’m still not a fan, despite the fact that Apple stock has dropped 40% since then and the fact that Arik Hesseldahl says that a buyback is … Continue reading

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The Irrational Allure of Free Stuff

How irrational is our love of Free Stuff? Dan Ariely runs a thought experiment: Consider how long you would be willing to stand in line for a free Ben & Jerry’s ice cream cone. Let’s assume that your answer is … Continue reading

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Vulture Funds: Homeowners’ Best Friends?

I don’t think I persuaded many people with my 5,550-word defense of vulture funds this time last year. Maybe Kambiz Foroohar will have better luck, with his heartwarming story of vulture funds saving homeowners from foreclosure. Or, you know, maybe … Continue reading

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EMI: Where the Owner Assails the Staff, and Vice-Versa

What happens when you cross a creative industry with a private-equity shop? Ask Guy Hands, who just bought EMI: What we are doing is taking the power away from the A&R guys and putting it with the suits – the … Continue reading

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The Unjustified Google Panic

Remember the panic which ensued when comScore announced that Google’s paid-click rate was declining? Henry Blodget went so far as to call it a "Google Disaster", and the shares plunged. But it turns out that the comScore data aren’t nearly … Continue reading

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Credit Markets Aren’t Liquid Enough for a Mass Selloff

Jon Jacobs wants "an unrestrained, cathartic selloff" in the credit markets. He makes a good point: that banks are holding on to the assets they’ve written down in the hope, basically, that they’re smarter than the markets. The only way … Continue reading

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Are Equities Attractive?

Brad DeLong thinks that stocks look attractive over the long run, and has written a paper to that effect: As of this writing the annual earnings yield on the value-weighted S&P composite index is 5.53%. This is a wedge of … Continue reading

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Municipal Default Alert: Vallejo, California

Do municipal bonds really never default? The Californian town of Vallejo seems to have gotten very close. Portfolio’s Liz Gunnison filled me in on the details of the city’s bonds, from Bond Buyer: The city government and its related enterprises … Continue reading

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