Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Rollbacks Matter

The lede from Goldman Sachs:

The U.S. economy is heading into 2018 with strong momentum that’s likely to boost wages and inflation more broadly, requiring the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates four times next year, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. economists said in a research note.

 The New York-based investment banking and securities firm raised its growth outlook for 2018 to 2.5 percent and lowered its forecast for unemployment to 3.7 percent by the end of 2018, said Goldman chief economist Jan Hatzius, a co-author of the note, which was released by email late Friday.
Read the whole thing:

Trump Versus The Deep Regulatory State

Rollbacks matter…

Great piece from Christopher DeMuth.  It’s behind a pay wall but here’s the key bit:

Federal regulation has been growing mightily since the early 1970s, powered by statutes that delegate Congress’s lawmaking authority to mission-driven executive agencies. Beginning in 2008, the executive state achieved autonomy. The Bush administration during the financial crisis, and the Obama administration in normal times, decreed major policies on their own, without congressional authorization and sometimes even in defiance of statutory law.

President Trump might have been expected to continue the trend. As a candidate, he had railed against imperious Washington and promised to clear regulatory impediments to energy development and job creation. Yet he also was an avid protectionist, sounded sometimes like an antitrust populist, and had little to say about regulatory programs like those of the Federal Communications Commission and the Food and Drug Administration. He was contemptuous of Congress and admiring of President Obama’s unilateral methods. Clearly, this was to be a results-oriented, personality-centered presidency.

The record so far has been radically different. With some exceptions (such as business as usual on ethanol), and putting aside a few heavy-handed tweets (such as raising the idea of revoking broadcast licenses from purveyors of “fake news”), President Trump has proved to be a full-spectrum deregulator. His administration has been punctilious about the institutional prerogatives of Congress and the courts. Today there is a serious prospect of restoring the constitutional status quo ante and reversing what seemed to be an inexorable regulatory expansion…


A third indicator is the introduction of regulatory budgeting, which sounds tedious but is potentially revolutionary. The idea goes back to the late 1970s, when the new health, safety and environmental agencies were first issuing rules that required private businesses and individuals to spend tens of millions of dollars or more. It seemed anomalous that this should be free of the disciplines of taxing, appropriating and budgeting that applied to direct expenditures. Jimmy Carter’s commerce secretary, Juanita Kreps, proposed a regulatory budget as a good-government measure; Sen. Lloyd Bentsen (D., Texas) introduced legislation; and several academics (myself included) worked out the theory and practicalities in congressional reports and journal articles.

The idea never went anywhere.

Excellent read.  Hat tip Austin Bay of

The Lone Man


Key bit: 

“Far away from cameras and fanfare,” Brown saw a “lone man” who he later realized was retired U.S. Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis, who is secretary of defense. At the time, he was surprised to see him at Section 60, but upon reflection, he told IJR, “I can’t imagine anywhere else he’d be on Veterans Day.”

An older man, who donned a hat and sweatshirt with Marine Corps logos and slogans, approached Mattis, shook his hand, and called it an “honor” to meet the general. While the father was moved to see him, he clarified to Mattis, “I know that’s just the kind of man you are.”

Brown explained to IJR that the man had been visiting the grave of his son, who was a Marine and told Mattis his son considered him “his hero.”

The general smiled and said something similar to, “Well, I think your son is one of mine.”

Read the whole thing:

One Year Ago Today


No. 1 With a Bullet

Commuters make their way along the westbound 91 freeway as the Canyon fire burns in Corona Tuesday, September 26, 2017. FRANK BELLINO, THE PRESS-ENTERPRISE/SCNG

Commuters make their way along the westbound 91 freeway as the Canyon fire burns in Corona Tuesday, September 26, 2017. FRANK BELLINO, THE PRESS-ENTERPRISE/SCNG

The lede:  It probably doesn’t surprise many Southern Californians that we endure the most stressful commutes among 27 U.S. markets studied, according to a Half survey of commuters. And that’s from the region with just the eighth-longest average trip — 53.7 minutes — in the nation.

“Probably not the list you want to be No. 1 on,” said Brett Good, Half’s senior district president for Southern California and Arizona.

This isn’t simply about congestion between home and work. The study suggests extensive mass transit options in a region can lower the anxiety created by this travel.

“When you’re doing all the work, it only adds to the stress of commuting,” Good says of those driving to their job.

Read the whole thing:

Grading The Republican Tax Plan

Dan Mitchell does the honors.  The lede:   House Republicans have unveiled their much-anticipated tax plan.  Is this something to celebrate? Well, that depends on whether you’re grading on a curve. Compared to a pure, simple, and fair flat tax, it’s timid and disappointing.

But compared to today’s wretched and unfair tax code, there are some very positive changes.  Especially at the corporate level.


Read the whole thing:

Our Top Trade Recommendations(January)

Year to date the major indexes have performed extremely well.  As of Friday’s close, which carried the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrials to new all-time highs, the Nasdaq Composite is up 25% in 2017.  Not far behind is the Dow 30 with a 19% year-to-date gain followed by the SP 500 which is up just over 15%.  Truly impressive.  But how do these gains compare to our top five recommendations from January?  Lets take a look.

#5  MasterCard(MA): +42%.  Recommended on Jan. 4 here:



#4  Agilent(A):  +43%.  Recommended on Jan. 11 here:



#3  Pulte(PHM):  +43%.  Recommended on Jan. 24 here:



#2  Adobe(ADBE):  +67%.  Recommended on Jan. 10



#1  Micron(MU):  +95%.  Recommended on Jan. 12 here:


At time of publication we are long MU, ADBE, A, MA and PHM in some managed accounts.

 Next up, our top 5 February recommendations. 


The Eagle and The Moon

From  An F-15E Strike Eagle takes off from an undisclosed in Southwest Asia, July 7, 2017. The Eagle, assigned to the 332nd Air Expeditionary Wing, is supporting Operation Inherent Resolve to combat the threat of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Damon Kasberg

Live to be 100

It’s certainly possible.  Three keys to getting there(From Scott Gallaway):

3. Genetics

2. Healthy lifestyle

1. How many people you love and care for

Hat tip Ryan Detrick

The Honda Civic, An Evolution


My first car, in 1976, was a slightly used 1973 Honda Civic.  Click the image above.

Great read.  Enjoy:

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