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December 24, 2012

How Many Malls Does China Need?


Last month, I attended a property conference in Hong Kong for senior management of Asian property companies. The conference was mundane and dull, but there was one thing that never ceased to amaze me—panel after panel spoke about the same issue. In a 4th tier Chinese city, how do you differentiate your million square foot mall from the two dozen other ones that are scheduled Read More
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November 5, 2012

Not How It Was Supposed To Be….


Almost a quarter millennia ago, the founders of this country decided to break with the king and go their own separate way. Their gripes were many and varied. They didn’t like their sugar, playing cards or tea to be taxed. They grew sick of quartering British soldiers. In general, they grew frustrated with a cadre of blowhards in London who appeared indifferent to the Read More
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September 19, 2012

$40 Billion A Month Won’t Fix The Economy….


$40 billion a month? That’s their big plan? I came in from my canoe trip to watch this? Anyone with a rudimentary understanding of how an economy actually works will realize that our economy does not suffer from a lack of liquidity. In fact, there is too much of it. The banks have so much excess cash, they don’t know what to do with Read More
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May 6, 2012

Does Real Estate Equal A Bond Short?


A few weeks ago, I was having a chat with a commercial real estate broker here in Miami. We were both baffled by the stratospheric rise in trophy properties in Miami, so he gave a quick example. A wealthy client wanted to get a property “priced out.” This meant that he wanted to have a bidding contest to see where others thought the price Read More
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March 30, 2012

John Paulson Has A Problem…


John Paulson has a problem—his own investors. As long as it’s his problem, it could be a problem for all of us as well. Let me note that I have never met Paulson, but I certainly admire his skill at navigating the markets in 2008 and before then. Unfortunately, in 2009 and 2010, lots of other investors also admired his skills. His funds ballooned Read More
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March 18, 2012

Miami Property Bottoms…


I have lived in Miami Beach, Florida for 8 years. To say that the real estate market here has been a roller-coaster is to understate the obvious. Whatever has happened in the rest of the US, it has happened here first and with a much greater magnitude. My own travails renting living spaces in 4 different locations neatly mirror this market. I never set Read More
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December 12, 2011

My Soap Box… (Sorry For Politics)


I want to apologize in advance for stepping onto my soap-box here. Over the past few years, our government has invaded the private sector in such a way that the two are hard to differentiate and suddenly talking about investing means talking about politics. I hate talking about politicians without mentioning a way to profit from their idiocy, but I feel that readers should Read More
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November 27, 2011

It’s About To Blow!!!


Lately, I’ve been less focused on the global markets because I’m so focused on Mongolia. However, it’s hard to ignore what’s going on in Europe as it affects all of us. Let me put it bluntly, they have about a week to figure this out, or they’re going back into the Dark Ages. They really have three choices; let the banks fail and destroy Read More
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October 10, 2011

No Hurry To Buy If There Is No Growth…


When you look around the US markets, arguably one of the cheapest large-cap stocks out there is Best Buy. Just a quick view of the figures will prove the point. It trades at 7 times forward earnings,5 times forward cash flow, has a rock solid balance sheet and high returns on capital–even at cyclically reduced earnings. The story gets even better when you realize Read More
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