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26 November 2021

Mr. Market was full of surprises this week. The Gap tanked on less than and we sold the shares in our taxable accounts for a too large loss and placed the proceeds in Nordstrom which was down even more on less than earnings. We also committed more funds to other issues as Black Friday saw the major market measures lose 2% plus on news of a new Covid variant. None of this need occur if folks would get the vaccine but America is a country of individualists and always has been. So we have to suffer through rises and falls in Covid occurrences. Be that as it may, we own and are purchasing stocks that are down 50% and greater from their yearly highs and will be reporting better than earnings and revenues in the quarters ahead. We did sell AT&T and Verizon for scratch losses to raise funds to redeploy in more volatile issues given the panic selloff on Friday.

Keep the faith, we are.


From Wonkette on inflation. The media mania about inflation reminds of the recent media overkill on whether President Biden would reappoint Chairman Powell. And on and on…. Watch sports and Netflix folks it's a lot more relaxing.

Inflation has been a hot topic lo these past few months, but some are starting to take it a bit too far. An article published in Market Watch this week is receiving a fair bit of attention today for claiming that inflation is causing "average Americans" to spend $5 a gallon on gas, $100-$200 on concert tickets and $90 on bottles of wine — largely because absolutely no one who could be considered an "average American" is doing that.



Mana from heaven

A plot of digital land in Decentraland — an online, virtual-only environment — sold for a record $2.43 million worth of cryptocurrency on Tuesday, more than double the prior record high for virtual real estate, which was more than $913,000. That's also a smidge higher than the average home price in Manhattan and well above prices in the other boroughs, as well as dwellings in San Francisco.

Metaverse Group, a subsidiary of Tokens.com, completed the purchase of a patch of digital land for 618,000 mana, or about $2.43 million at the time, according to a Decentraland spokesperson and a statement by Tokens.com. Mana is Decentraland's cryptocurrency, which users employ to buy and sell assets in the virtual space.


And the virtual fantasy world continues.

A mega yacht just sold for around $650,000, making it the most expensive non-fungible token ever sold in The Sandbox virtual gaming world.

The Metaflower Super Mega Yacht was purchased for 149 ether, according to etherscan. It is described as an ultra-luxury megayacht, featuring a DJ booth, two helipads, and a hot tub, among other amenities. HypeBeast was the first to report.

The digital asset was released by Republic Realm, a metaverse developer, for The Fantasy Collection line of luxury NFTs designed for The Sandbox. Other luxury products include private islands, jet skis, and speedboats.

The Sandbox is a virtual world where players can build, own, and monetize their gaming experiences.


From Barron"s: Macy's Stock Is Still Worth Buying After Hitting a New Record

Investors seem to like the prospect of change at Macy's . On Thursday, shares of the department-store giant soared 21%, to $37.37, their highest close in three years, after the retailer said it's exploring separating its fast-growing digital business from its bricks-and-mortar stores.

Activist investor Jana Partners is pushing Macy's (ticker: M) to spin off the online business, arguing that it could fetch a higher valuation than the retailer's recent $11.5 billion value. "We need to complete our analysis, and we plan to provide an update after the work is complete," Macy's CEO Jeff Gennette said on a call with investors after the company posted Street-beating earnings for the three months ended Oct. 30.

Meanwhile, Macy's continues to expand its online operations, with plans to create a digital marketplace next year to attract more third-party merchants. The current digital business has about $8 billion in annual revenue, and the retailer said that it expects that to reach $10 billion in 2023.

It all bodes well for the stock, which, through Thursday, was up about 232% this year. It isn't just online sales potential that is boosting the shares. "About 50% of the stock reaction so far is from the company's strong top- and bottom-line fundamentals that we think have staying power into 2022," says Gordon Haskett analyst Chuck Grom, who rates the stock a Buy with a $50 target.



3 million workers are missing amid the labor shortage, and 2 million of them are immigrants who never came to the US because of Trump-era policies

American businesses are feeling the impact of the current labor shortage as they struggle to hire amid a record high wave of people quitting — and Trump-era immigration policies could be to blame.

Roughly 3 million fewer people in the US are working or looking for work than in February 2020, as measured by the Bureau of Labor Statistics labor force participation rate. That's the labor shortage in a nutshell.



Crypto Mania

The crypto market has fluctuated wildly this year, but has generally been trending higher. The crypto market capitalization hit $3 trillion recently.

Bitcoin has gained 100% since the start of the year, while ether is up 480%. Meme coins have had it better, with dogecoin rising 4,835% year-to-date and shiba inu skyrocketing 63,490,000%.

Many retail investors poured multiple rounds of government stimulus checks into stocks and crypto, helping fuel the surge in both markets seen during the pandemic.



Option Mania

Hot stocks like Tesla and Apple have become even hotter as stock option speculators sweep back into the market. Many are retail investors holding their positions for less than a day. This new day-trading frenzy in options is helping lift individual stocks and bolstering the revenue of online brokers like Robinhood.

"Small retail traders are back buying lottery tickets on the rally again," says Jason Goepfert, the founder of Sundial Capital Research, whose SentimenTrader newsletter tracks measures of speculative trading.



19 November 2021

Macy's profited accounts again on Thursday as it reported great earnings and sales and we sold for a nice gain. American Eagle also popped that day and we eliminated the position for a 10% gain. We continued to trade 5% daily moves in Bed Bath and also Urban.

We have been overexposed to retail for the past few months and this week as we took profits, we reduced holdings to a more manageable amount as all but The Gap have rewarded our perspicacity.

We did repurchase more in line amounts of Bed Bath, Macy's, Urban Outfitters and American Eagle on Friday to maintain retail exposure through the rest of retail earnings reporting season.

We added Energizer Holdings (the bunny folks) to accounts in a first-time purchase. The shares are down from $55 to $38 in the past few months with a 3% yield and priced at 11 times earnings.

We sold IBM and placed the money in many accounts into ARKK, the fancy stock ETF. We intend to hold into the New year when we think ARKK stocks will have a gap higher when tax loss selling abates at which time we will sell-unless ARKK moves higher sooner.

Other companies we own are: Verizon, AT&T, Intel, Western Digital, Walgreens, AMC Networks, Viacom CBS, Citrix Systems, Penn Gaming, Twitter, Pinterest, Energizer Holdings, Hewlett Packard Enterprises, Ford and our retail package.

We traded PNW profitably with a dividend to boot (The saying "to boot" comes from an Old English word bot, meaning "advantage" or "remedy." It's related to the contemporary English words better and best, so if something's "to boot," it's added or extra.) and took scratch losses in our 3 oil stocks and Cleveland Cliffs. And in a few accounts, we have been trading a new IPO- Portillo's Hot Dogs- a Chicago institution.

Our current outlook is to maintain investments and trading into the New Year and then take advantage of the end of window dressing (selling stocks that are down big) and suffering from tax selling and then make a concerted effort to get to cash before the end of February.


Elon Musk doesn't want to pay taxes.

Even though Tesla would not exist without the billions in outright grants from the U.S. and California plus the tax credits that the first 200,000 car buyers received ($7500 per car). Elon moved to Texas to avoid California taxes (California helped him buy the car plant where Tesla was first made) and now feels it is unamerican for him to have to part with any of the hundreds of billions of dollars he has amassed in the last many years. Schumck!!


Bitcoin Mania:

The world's fastest-growing major financial exchange has no head office or formal address, lacks licenses in countries where it operates and has a chief executive who until recently wouldn't answer questions about his location.


IPO Mania

One97 Communications, which owns Paytm—one of India's leading mobile payment companies—is set to go public on Thursday in the country's largest-ever IPO…. Paytm's offer price values the company at nearly $20 billion…. At the IPO price, Paytm is trading at 50 times last fiscal year's revenue. PayPal is trading at 10 times.


Reminds of New Year's diet plans.

Peloton, the maker of connected exercise bikes, said yesterday that it would raise $1 billion in cash from selling stock, just weeks after it said it didn't need more capital. The company's stock is down more than 60 percent this year. Disappointing sales and profits as lockdowns ease have also hit pandemic-market darlings like Zoom, which is down nearly 25 percent this year. Meanwhile, the shares of companies like the gym operator Planet Fitness and the concert organizer Live Nation have risen steadily in recent months... "The markets clearly sense the pandemic is over," said Ben Emons of Medley Global Advisors.


By the by Trump is 75 so he'd be 78 if reelected just like Joe who Repubs think is too old.

"We" pick on the Democrats for being perhaps a bit to advanced in age, especially in leadership, but in the Senate numbers 2-4 in the rage rank are Grassley (88), Shelby (87), and Inhofe (87).

Grassley, of course, is running for re-election. Thanks to whoever signed me up for the TEAM GRASSLEY emails



5 November 2021

We are heading for the country next week so our next post will be November 19.

This was a happy week for us as Bed Bath zoomed and then pulled back and then popped again allowing us to lock in substantial profits. The move in BBBY also caused more interest in our other retail holding and we used what looked like short covering to reduce positions. We reinvested the proceeds in stocks we have been trading. In some more aggressive accounts, we also purchased - in small amounts - beaten down wonder stock with the idea of holding them through year end for a next January rally as selling pressure abates.

We currently own Verizon, AT&T, Pinnacle West (Arizona Utility yielding 5%), Exxon, Apache, British Petroleum, IBM, Intel, Gilead, Walgreens and Bristol Myers. They all yield 3.5% and more.

Other issues are Viacom CBS, Carpenter Steel, Ford and Twitter. Our retail package remains American Eagle, Urban Outfitters, Macy's and the Gap. We will continue to trade Bed Bath and Abercrombie as the markets allow.

As we said above, we also own 14 wonder stocks many of which are down 50% or greater from their highs. Most earn money or will this year. They are: Beyond Meat, Citrix, Zillow, Pinterest, Snap, Lyft, Uber, Activision (games), Chegg Services (College stuff), Penn Gaming, DraftKings, Vimeo, Quantum Scape (batteries for electric cars- they hope) and ChargePoint Holdings (charging stations for electric cars).

"The main purpose of the stock market is to make fools of as many men as possible."

― Bernard M. Baruch



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