Skip to main content

The new administration -- what could go wrong

The American political system is in for a massive shock:

  1. Trump is nominated as the GOP's presidential candidate, who has broken every rule and is certainly not GOP's establishment's first (or 5th) choice
  2. Trump over the past 6 months has bamboozled the GOP and its system -- he screwed with Romney, and other GOP grandees -- he is certain to continue (its worked so well for him) 
  3. Trump is elected -- this man who clearly suffers from ADHD will not confront a world of "gray solution problems" that are the bread and butter of the President's day.
  4. Trump nominates a cabinet of Billionaires that seem to have been chosen to destroy their individual department s-- then again maybe a good shake up is warranted, but we can expect several departments to shrink dramatically (Education & EPA to name but two)
  5. Congress is supporting a quick confirmation of Trump's nominees in the hope that they will do their bidding -- I think they are wrong!
  6. Trump's distrust of the intelligence community and of the Defense establishment is well documented yet he wants to increase surveillance and defense budgets
  7. All Congressmen are already running for re-election in 2018, and a third of the senate -- their objectives and those of Trump may conflict
  8. Trump spokesperson told reporters (on camera) that you should ignore what Trump says but "see what's in his heart".  Either Trump will become Twitterless and have scripted speeches, or the world will have to guess what's up with that!.  
  9. I suspect that one of the first things to go is "free speech" in newsrooms -- as Trump or his buddies use the courts (a la Gawker) to hit the 5th estate, where it hurts -- in their pockets.
  10. Trump has hired hookers, and bragged about it, his wife was a lingerie model and his regularly doesn't pay his contractors. He is sued by a large number of goods providers and nobody cares.
  11. If Trump was not a billionaire when he ran for the White House he will be in four years.

Again, nobody cares about all this stuff, not the GOP because they think they've got Trump in a cage (they are wrong) not the Democrats that have to figure out what it takes to destroy a candidate, who is notionally running as a republican (maybe Bernie Sanders should give it a go?).  Clinton got 3 million more votes than Trump and that was not enough to swing the election.

The next few years will be interesting


Popular posts from this blog

Trucker shortage? No a plan to allow driverless rigs

There are still articles on how America is running out of truckers -- and that its a huge problem, except its not a problem, if it was a problem salaries would rise to so that demand would clear. Trucking is one of those industry where the vast majority of participants are owner/operators and therefore free agents.

Salaries and cost are extremely well know, "industry" complains that there are not enough truckers, yet wages continue to fall... Therefore there are still too many truckers around, for if there was a shortage of supply prices would rise, and they don't.

What there is though is something different; there is a push to allow automatic rigs to "operate across the US", so to encourage the various authorities to allow self driving rigs you talk shortage and hope that politicians decided that "Well if people don't want to work, lets get robots to do the work" or words to that effect.

This has nothing to do with shortage of drivers, but every…

Every punter says oil prices are on the rise: Oil hits $48/bbl -- lowest since September 2016

What the hell?

How could this be, punters, advisors, investment bankers all agreed commodity prices  in general and oil prices in particular are on the rise...its a brave new era for producers and exporters -- finally the world is back and demand is going through the roof, except not so much!

What happened?  Well energy is complicated, the world operates in a balance -- 30 days of physical reserves is about all we've got (seriously) this is a just in time business.  So the long term trend always gets hit by short term variations.

Global production over the past 12 months has risen by somewhat less than 1.5% per annum.  As the world market changes production becomes less energy intensive (maybe), but the reality is that the world is growing more slowly -- America Q4 GDP growth was around 1.9% (annualized) Europe is going nowhere fast (the GDP growth in Germany is overshadowed by the lack of growth in France, Italy, Spain (lets say 27 Euro members generated a total GDP growth of 1.2…

Paying for research

This morning I was reading that CLSA -- since 2013 proudly owned by CITIC -- was shutting down its American equity research department -- 90 people will be affected!

Now the value of a lot of research is limited, that is not to say that all research is bad. In fact, I remember that GS's Asia Aerospace research was considered the bible for the sector.  Granted, there was little you could do with the research since the "buy" was for Chinese airlines...that were state owned.  Still it was a vey valuable tool in understanding the local dynamics.  It seems that the US has introduced new legislation that forces brokers to "sell" their research services!  Figures of $10,000 an hour have been mentioned...

Now, research can be sold many times; if GS has 5000/6000 clients they may sell the same research 300x or 400x (I exaggerate) but this is the key -- Those who buy the research are, I presume, prohibited from giving it away or selling it, at the same time the same rese…