Hydrogen has been held up as the Holy Grail of energy sources many times. It's rapid refill capability and long-range, coupled with its zero-emissions at point of use gives it the best of the attributes of fossil fuels and electricity. Now the Ports of Auckland in New Zealand are attempting to go "no emission" by adopting hydrogen as the fuel source of choice. Marcus Hand reports for Seatrade Maritime News: New Zealand’s Ports of Auckland is aiming for zero emissions by 2040 and is looking to hydrogen power as an alternative to batteries to power terminal equipment. As it targets … [Read more...]
Archives for December 2018
Here’s the Minimum You Should Invest in Fixed-Income
Back in May of 2002 I warned readers of the dangers of market timing, and of investing too much of their portfolio in equities. I wrote: Your Focus: Dividends & Interest In this issue, I re-emphasize why I think conservative investors must focus laser-like on fixed-income interest and dividends from common stocks. No matter what hype you read in the media or hear from brokers, stocks in general are not cheap—far from it. When all you get from the average big company stock is a 1.5% yield and you pay nearly 30 times earnings in the process, you are not looking at bargains. As you know, … [Read more...]
U.S. Oil Revolution Looms over OPEC
When OPEC and non-OPEC oil producers met in Vienna recently, there was one major player missing, the United States. America has become one of the world's largest producers, even recently becoming a net exporter of petroleum products. The IEA says American influence over world oil markets will only grow. CNBC's Holly Ellyatt reports: On the day OPEC ministers sat down to talk in Vienna last Thursday, the IEA noted that an important piece of data was published, noting that "according to the (U.S.) Energy Information Administration, in the week to 30 November the U.S. was a net exporter of crude … [Read more...]
Your Retirement Life: Gone Fishin’ at Bud N’ Mary’s
On a recent trip to the Florida Keys, a client visited Bud N’ Mary’s in Islamorada, FL. If you're a fisherman you'll want to check out this neat video about this sport fishing institution. Originally posted on Your Survival Guy. … [Read more...]
Are Commodities Predicting, or Overreacting?
Commodity prices are down, and the question is, are they accurately predicting a downturn in the economy, or reflecting irrational fears of a slowdown? Ira Iosebashvili writes in The Wall Street Journal: Many key commodities are on track to notch declines this year, underlining how fears of slowing growth, global-trade tensions and a persistently strong dollar have hammered prices for raw materials. The Bloomberg Commodity Index is down by more than 6% this year, led by a nearly 13% fall in oil prices. Other raw materials are also headed lower: Copper is off almost 16% this year, while … [Read more...]
“E.J., Has Your Phone Been Ringing off the Hook?”
With market volatility creeping upward, this is once again a question I'm getting, but I urge you to reread what I wrote back on February 28, 2018. Well this was a fun month for the stock market with wild swings from high to low of around 2,000 points in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. One question I’m asked on a consistent basis is “E.J., is your phone ringing off the hook?” and my answer is “no,” and I know why. Most of you have been educated by Dick Young that investment success is achieved over a lifetime, not a month or two. Investment success is about hitting singles and … [Read more...]
Are Canadian Home Prices About to Crash?
Canada's real estate market has been booming for years, but recently things have begun to turn. In October, Toronto's new home prices dropped the most in one month since 1996. Is this the start of a more protracted downturn or is Canada going to pull-off a soft-landing in housing? Greg Quinn reports on the market for Bloomberg: The housing market has moderated this year as federal rules made it harder to qualify for a mortgage. The Bank of Canada also raised its trend-setting interest rate five times between July 2017 and October of this year. New home prices were advancing at an annual pace … [Read more...]
Changing Christmas Shopping Rituals with the Demise of Toys “R” Us
In The Washington Post, Carrie Melgao laments the demise of Toys "R" Us, especially its annual toy catalogue. She writes: I’m one of those nostalgic Gen-Xers who remembers lying on my stomach, legs crossed at the ankles, poring over the Sears Wish Book every Christmas. I’d circle the Lil’ Lady Buggy, Barbie Dreamhouse, Sweet Tears baby doll, then present my list to the Santa at the local VFW. For years, my sons and I were able to re-create the tradition each winter with that season’s dog-eared Toys “R” Us catalogue. We’d cuddle up on the couch, circling the giant Imaginext Batcave and … [Read more...]
Wealth Management: Year-End Planning
One of the “must dos” for any serious investor is to make sure your investment house is in order as year-end quickly approaches. Ensuring that you have the best technology is an important way to do that, and I have found through years of experience with different custodians that Fidelity has always been the industry's technology leader (this is not a paid endorsement, just the truth learned from my experience). Fidelity's technology leadership began in its earliest days, pushed on by former Chairman Ned Johnson's passion. I recently wrote about Johnson's focus on technology that "He … [Read more...]
The Last Debt Domino to Fall?
Leveraged loan investors are heading for the door. Loans have their place in investment portfolios, but as late cycle assets to hold, these are not great. The Wall Street Journal's Sam Goldfarb calls them the "last domino to fall," in debt markets. He writes: While mutual funds represent just one source of demand for loans, the recent outflows have had a big market impact, leading to sharp declines in the prices of existing loans and prompting more investor-friendly terms on a shrinking supply of new loans entering the market. To some extent, loans—often referred to on Wall Street as … [Read more...]