What is News Worthy

  • Malone's Magic shines on Pandora!
  • .
  • Can MSNBC shake the Liberal media under Comcast and take over?
  • .
  • Not another investigation!
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  • Did May deal a good hand to Merkel?
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  • Bill Gross: without German Umbrella just another Economist trying to get attention?
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  • Qatar and $12B in orders after Saudi Mega deals in Defense Spend: A new business Model?

Re-inventing America!


Silicon Valley Vibes!

  • Elon Musk Line: Car mover underground in Hollywood!
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  • Would you allow Siri to drive you around?
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  • Google Ventures : the hidden gold mine? From curing death to scissoring and splicing genes?
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  • GS Warriors : Is Oakland ready to be part of High Tech bubble?
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  • Did Ford Make a big mistake by changing their tradional CEO?
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  • Killing Uber Management: Is it a Mistake which will burst the bubble?

FANG News:

  • What ever happened to House of Cards: Its not even 7 seasons
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  • Mother of all AI? Lets Fix SIRI before leaping too high!
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  • Under steady Republican policies - will American Advertising spend go down?
  • .
  • If Waymo is $70 Billion should Uber be $200B?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Bulls , Bears & the Swans!

They say it takes three to Tango on Wall Street...and so I will take the third leg just to make it interesting!

Gold- as the commodities bubble is struggling to go anywhere(the industrial ones) ..it is easy to move gold with very little capital...even at a much higher level it should have very little effect on the recovery

As Euro keeps trending lower the debt financing for US is well on track and another month like this and US is safe for another couple of years..the sideshow of Greece, Spain and the likes will never enter the main street in Europe...In US after neutralising Wall Street the White House will break the fixed income players rein on the currency and commodity market making it difficult for non-economic capital to influence policy makers and disrupt globalization..

UK - with the Government effectively reporting to the Queen...a political disruption will have no impact unless the common go against Her Majesty
Which is still far away..and more over other than benefiting from the Keynesian control of the global monetary system, which they will continue to benefit for some more time and save the Palace economically....they have very little to contribute to the global economy!

China - as it prepares to manage currency ...Japan will grow and help the global economy and start to recover from its 20 years of lost glory...

India will continue to prosper at the expense of China as it continues to balance its domestic priorities with export needs. India will falter if the Gandhi (actually The Nehru) family takes over the Power posts after leaving it to non controversial party members for so long.

With dollar strengthening Middle East will start contributing to the global economy in a more meaningful way. Russia will emerge out stronger as its ambition to rebuild USSR will become a reality with the faltering Europe supporting Putin's dream.

As the Policy makers and Politicians gain control over money managers and corporate governance - capitalism may take a new meaning while economy will continue to recover with global imbalances reaching a manageable level in the next decade!

With more and more Swans getting black and easy to manipulate the market gyrations with very limited capital....it will give way to some other esoteric title making a millionaire out of some other theorist!!

Monday, May 10, 2010

The Forbidden Apple!

Atleast for me, said my Brain to my Heart as I walked out of the famed Palo Alto Apple shop!

After resisting the initial urge to taste Apple during the iPad Wi-Fi Lollapalooza - and staying away from the Hit buttons on a couple of times while thumbing through them in the On-line store, decided to walk into the Great Apple Mecca this week-end!

Saturday Morning walking on University Ave - sharing the Pavement to those Walking their Bi-cycles with a white Cord dangling around their neck and stepping around those walk-way cafeteria crowds glued to their cappuccino and their White Macs - was an experience by itself!

A block away and I was already sweating and excited at the thought of Walking in and buying an Apple -iPad - finally!

Stepping in- there were an equal number of Blue Shirt Apple carded people as there were MacHeads- or is it PadHeads?

As I was getting lost in my decisions a friendly Blue shirt stepped closer and offered help- A bit shy, may be like that PC guy, pulled out my sheet - proud for coming prepared, and rattled all my questions....

One by one she answered proudly and at times brought in an expert to clarify more in-depth questions!

When I asked about configuration on the iPads for ordering - she said - 'Oh we are sold out and you can however reserve at no cost' and they will call when it arrived!!!!

Disappointed , my impulsive side of the brain , needed a few more apps related questions answered, obviously comparing it to my PC soul - and came a bit short on satisfaction - as she said to look at those thousands of third party Apps available to serve my needs!

PC in me was quick to hah-ha and said Not soo soon Steve! and walked out of the Apple store - not succumbing to his Magic- as I breathed Olive oil and Dark beer floating from the joint next door!

Back home - my kids shaking and twisting their i-Whatevers and screaming (the happy kind) in the backdrop- as I open my Laptop, came running only to go back quickly to their i-Screaming on hearing my disappointed visit to Palo Alto!

Browsing through a few sites - on iPad Apps - was surprisingly shocked at their creative offerings and how innovative their approaches to using technology from Apple were! And as I saw Mr O - a Berryhead , a first in the Whitehouse, slap those i-whoevers during a University Address- it slowly dawned on me for thinking so PC like!

The slowing mind stared at the power of i-Everything and the Power of Jobs!

Decided to break the barrier and take a bite at that forbidden Apple - well i-Whenever it is available!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

7 Reasons Why this is only a Correction!

Cramer and the likes have turned bearish very early to avoid missing the train!

Apple's market capitalization is still far from 500 billion!

PIMCO and the ever popular Mr Gross started loading up on long end US Bonds running against his mouth!

One more push and Euro will break:Bond Makers cannot afford a broken Euro and hence will support the currency!

German Election though against Merkel - it is over! The english Tea Break for election is over too! With Elections over Mr Trichet and ECB will wake up!

WhiteHouse has wallstreet execs on a leash (along with Auto, Healthcare, Defense..that's about 60 percent of GDP)!

And the the most important. Reason is:

World cup soccer just a month away!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

78 Billion and more to come...!

Aided by the Greek riots?

German Election?

And the English uncertainity?

As the riots in Greece gets mindshare of the media- and the Chinese celebration on the largest and most extravgant Expo gets underway....the Global market spirals downward! Looks like the last time the Chinese had this celebration - the Olympics ....the beginning of the Financial Whatever wass underway with the Russians marching into Georgia!

The smart and slowly healing American economy- while perplexed at the possible Olympic Proportion of teh Euro crisis - US government papers are selling like hot cakes...as $78 Billion of those are hittig hte market jut in time to capitalize the situation!

Will this weekend see a possible end to the European melae with the Germans and Brits winding down their political change over or just enter another week-end negotiations in Europe escalating the chaos to another level?

Another month of similar uncertainity to the unity in Europe will seal the deal for the Fed and Treasury as they accelerate their Trillion dollar endeveaour!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Confrontational or Opportunistic?

Moving slowly away from a Financial Whatever into an era of confrontational Policy makers globally seems to be gripping the financial markets - as the politicians look for the next opportunistic kill!

Yes from White House to the Jail House in Down Under - it appears the strong arming tactics is being overlooked- at least amongst the media and the common!

Yes From Angela Merkel to Hu else in Asia - seems to be enjoying the uncertainty offered in a platter by the Media and the financial market!

Yes From Blankenfein to Mr Howard is scrambling to polish their manners and PR effort to stay below the radar!

Yes From Nancy Pelocy to Mr Shelby - there doesn't seem to be a strong original feeling that lasts for more than a week or so!

Yes from Trash talking Whitman to smooth talking Chris every one seems to be waging the populist war to grab power!

Taxing the people and penalising the corporation - whether in the form of resource penalty or to plug the whole in the Ocean is enjoying an easy passage!

Is this the beginning of Change that will lead to a new form of global governance?

And pave the way for a New medium of transaction?

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Did Goldman get a Black eye...?


Actually its more like a Black FACE!

Mr Whitacre...Please slow down!

It is not surprising to see the turn around of General Motors under the new chiew.

It is not surprising to see GM gaining ground with the consumers!

It is not surprising to see GM give back some money lent back to the Government!

It is not surprising to see Mr Whitacre crowing his accomplishment in such a short period!


Seeing the recent commercial of General Motors talking about giving back all the money lent to it....by Mr Whitacre?

Yes it is good to gain market share..but seems to be a stretch to the truth!

What was wiped out was not just the shareholders but sidestepping the bankruptcy laws! Yes it was the right thing to do during the Financial Whatever ...but GM's problem was not the result of the Financial whatever..it has been in the making for a couple of decades of Detroit Management style!

A little bit modesty by GM in this tough times will go a long way for Mr Whitacre and GM!

Yes - in this column we have talked so high of GM's cars and Mr Whitacre and we are extremely positive about the GM's future- and we also feel its only a few years away for GM to re-establish its leadership position..!

However it will be nice for GM's management to be a little polite and stick to just what they do best - CARS!

Friday, April 30, 2010

White House aids the Taj Mahal syndrome!

Just when you thought the curtain is closing and the credits will start rolling.....Not so soon says Mr Obama's forceful team!

The Taj Mahal built over several years and the name missing on the 200 West building - yet every cabbie and street walker knows the power inside 200 West- even as they make 1.6 Million blocks of ice in its basement every night to cool- the brains of Blankfein and his buddies at Goldman Sachs- is shaping up to be another one of those casualties of the Taj Mahal syndrome.

If this story unfolds the way it has in the past- 3-6 months of distraction including the current investigations - should bring the bottom and will recover - hopefully under a new Shah Jahan!

The New Force in Wall Street!

A person seldom talked about!

A person who shies away from Cameras!

A company which has been in the shadows of Tall Wall Street personalities and egos!

And it is time for growing up and face the cameras!

John Mack's legacy will be written in future - post his retirement!

John Mack has left behind a powerhouse which will take the leadership from Goldman Sachs and people will start recognising John Mack's management capability and his business acumen - as it will emerge as the only Wall Street Firm which has stayed low during this era of excess and will come unscathed and will rule the streets of money and power the Old Fashion Way - John Mack Way!

It is a good opportunity to load up on Morgan Stanley!

New York State of Times!

Yes- we are entering a new era in almost everything from Washington Politics to Main street participation in influencing Global direction!

And the time for New York Times to prosper is Now!

From pulling the rug from the Goldman Boys to aiding Mr Obama in sweeping into the White House - it is very evident that NYT has what it takes to shake things up and have not just a steady followership but have the ability to expand the reach!

In the past several decades US market has been local and the people very right brain driven and immediate & local in nature! As Technology and Internet started to spread its wings interms of reach and affordability - what is local is not local anymore!

And who else to provide the hunger for content with a twist of polarised opinion- strong and critical most of the time! And NYT has been the strongest in expressing its leftist opinions and as US integrates into a global village - beyond economically, NYT can go global like the BBC or Time or even Fortune!

Now is the time & the political environment gives the platform that is needed for NYT to establish its cred and spread its wings!

Goldman might bring journalistic awards- and it has the ability to reach beyond NY city with its reporting during the financial crisis!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Obama's FinReg gets God's Blessing!


Goldman Sach's CEO Mr Blanken-stein , who at times moonlights to do God's Work , finally unequivocally SUPPORTS the Financial Regulations!


It took a God's work , well maybe just an obnoxious set of Policy makers and regulators and bit of arm twisting - or maybe more like body twisting ,to make Mr Blankfein to come out several times to full heartedly- well may be quarter heartedly , support during hte what has turned out to be a Torturous and humiliating inquiry / interrogation - atleast humiliating for the questioning panel as they showcased an below class arrogant and partisan behaviour infront of a Alcapone like behaviour from those boys from 200 West!


The last Man standing is after all not the same as it was in those Western Movies - In Washington you just piss on the last man standing!


Financial Regulation and the Gang from Washington will move forward or more like Bulldoze forward!


Not necessarily the proper process but certainly is the right thing for the US Economy however cruel it is to the current generation!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

MS Merkel , Mr Brown , Greece and Portugal!

What do they have in common-

All their future is at stake and are very shaky!

With Washington capitalising on the fear on Goldman Sachs - is certainly helping the Treasury and Federal Reserve in its goal to keep the printing easy!

Yes the interest on US papers have caved in and the Dollar getting stronger and stronger- as the US gets ready to bring more than a Trillion dollars to the market!

Looks like all the stars are lined properly, coincidentally?

Confident, Consistent & Cocky!

Five hours of Mr Levin's drilling and the star witnessess who are supposed to blow up GS like the Enron days - turn out to ba a Yawn!

Anger and Arrogance - on the questioning side didnt invoe anything from teh Goldman people!

Looks like an Al Capone hearing! Brutal and outright humilation - but the White shirt guys from 200 West - at time uneasy but most of the time they were consistent in their story and refused to buckle under the strong arming nature of the questioning!

Even the Mr Tourre, who made this more sensational - cam across more credible and authoritative!

Mr Viniar - dry at times and could have used a cup of water - but again was consistent in the story!

It didnt appear that they feel they mislead and feel they are here for all the wrong reasons!

Unlike the past hearings where most of the people who came to Washington - whether from Detroit or New York - this gang from Wall Street cam mostly prepared and did give in!

If this is the script for the whole show - GS will come out unscathed and will be better and stronger going forward!

Apple's intrusion...?

into Privacy or arm twisting which demonstrates their legal arrogance?

Or just shows how fragile our law and enforcement is and how easy it is to bend to te wims and fancies of the connected?

What ever the answer is - it is intriuging to see Apple after having blown the secret new version of Apple decides to harrass the reporter?

Is this another indication of Apple paranoia or Apple 3.0?

Monday, April 26, 2010

Amazing Amazon!

Amazon is slowly extending its reach into a larger Distribution and Logistics play as it matures and redefines the business model.

As Mr Bezo's vision gets a better clarity on where the Connected economy is headed - it is apparent that Amazon and its reach in the future will be more powerful than What Woolworth or Sears or even Walmart did!

MFG.com an innovative powerhouse promoted and supported by Mr Bezo will one day showcase his vision for Amazon.

Kindle - might have a tough time to fight Mr Jobs & the mighty Apple - but the Industry and the users will lose if the Kindle world is not allowed to mature. What Kindle does for the publisher - is prevent piracy of eBooks! Yes Apple and iPad will enable readers to easily move files and eBooks at zero cost and no penalty - which is not possible in Kindle! From a reader perspective - the cost of eBook is already up some 30-40% and they cannot do a damn about it- where as their reader -iPad is enabling Apple to make a ton of money! This shows the model Amazon plays - but fails to do a good PR job with their customers be it Publishers or readers!

Another change that is enabling Amazon to be a bigger player which is not apparent to the outside world is - slowly making changes-

- UPS is not the privileged delivery man for them: the question here is beyond the obvious cast saving is there a business play?

- Used book distribution for 3rd party resellers: makes it very difficult to look outside for any form of books!

- playing logistics arm of established companies: both for retail and otherwise

- And ofcourse a major Cloud player leaving others to the dust when it comes to customer acquisition

And on and on and on....

Making Amazon a real long term play beyond the Wallstreet glamour!

The Big Dog- sneaks out without Barking!

Mr Buffet had a reason when he stayed in Nebraska!

As the barking sound in the Dog house reaches a feverish pitch in Washington- MR Derivatives himself seems to have bent the rule a bit!

Silently without barking!

The Man who coined the now Famous Financial Weapons of MD - is the largest Derivates trader with over $68 Billion in books!

A single trade was an inch closer to destroying Mr Buffet's empire during the Financial Whatever - yet he escaped with a wimper!

And now with the Wall Street Big Dogs barking like a porch puppy - MR Buffet elected to slime out with the Big Bone!

Yes - WSJ in its report high lights how Mr Buffet has managed to grand father the FinReg effectively excluding Berkshire from the fallout of the FinReg!

Well Done MR Nice Guy -

Yahoo and Goldman Sach's Management Grade!

Yahoo's CEO gave a B plus for her performance and still kept her bonus and the covetted CEO post while laying off thousands of hard working yahoos!

Goldman claims that they were not smart and lost a ton of money - over 90 Million on the covetted deal- the Fabulous Mr Tourre inked for Goldman Sachs and yet he was promoted and still holds a very powerful and visible job!!

Legally nad Financially they might be ok -

But, But ....This sounds absolutely insane where the argument - no matter how you dice it does not make sense!

In a Zero sum Wallstreet Economy - going for the Jugular is good only if you know that the audience is blind and deaf and stupid!

Going for the Jugular?

As the Whitehouse gave room for a new pet - the Dog house was crowded with wall street critters!

One after the other they started getting after profusely appologising - YES appologising in-front of Wall Street Policy Makers and Live TV audience-

Lehman's Fuld did,

Citi's Pandid Did,

Detroit and the whole gang Did,

Rubin Did,

Mr Greenspan Did,

And the line kept going on and on and on....

But the BIG DOG kept barking and going for the Jugular!

Yes, Mr Blanken-stein and the Golden Boys from 200 West refused to give in, may be God's Work comes with a little protection?

With less than 24 Hours left for the final chance to get out of the Dog house of the Obama regime - it appears Mr God himself will have the Golden opportunity to bow and give mercy for its shareholders!

There are no Winners in Wallstreet from this Financial Whatever - unless Mr Blanken-stein has the courage and smartness to follow the barks of his fellow Wallstreet critters and bows and not bark tomorrow!

This is not the time to go for the Jugular - this is a time for wagging the tail!

Hopefully Mr Blanken-stein will!

And the last Dog can leave!

CAT on the Prowl!

Blow out numbers and quarter will be an understatement!

Mr Owens - though would like to slap the Obama administration for their policy rederick- knows his business and strengths!

Calerpillar's top line while inching higher- acting earlier on cost cuts through laying off 10,000 at the very early cycle is helping the bottom line immensely!

With Greenspan like background in Economics and Global Economy - his market acumen is certainly very timely and could be an indicator for where the economy and the global expansion is headed. With a management change in the horizon - Mr Owens right hand is taking over and will take CAT to a new level - which it deserves - with its engineering and management prowess.

Based on the message coming out of Caterpillar - Industrials are getting ready for the next up cycle and the rest of the complex should see a similar upswing - may be with a little lag as they reacted slow to cut down the cost!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

End of Blackberry Age?

Instant gratification!

Get rich quick to impulsive and satiating behaviour - has always been the attraction for human beings!

With Internet and mobility we are experiencing a rapid shift into impulsive and compulsive behaviour on a day to day basis which has a broader implications- which will affect everything that we have gotten used to for several centuries from relationships to business conducts!

Small corporations to celebrities are reaping the benefits of the new and now age of Internet and mobility.

Companies like Apple , Google and the likes have extended the technologies innovated by peers to provide for with affordable and immediate availability. Facebooks and Twitters have have blended the corporate needs with consumer bahaviours.

There is aways hiccups and bumps along the way to maturity-

There is always a pain associated with any disruption-

And with such a wide reaching influence of Internet and Mobility enabled bahvioural changes we see penalty driven policy shifts that will make corporate and personal adoption of such changes with a grain of salt leading to more mature offerings - both in product and conduct innovations!

An indication of such a shift is evident in what is happening to Goldman Sachs in its revelations during the Sub-prime led Financial Whatever - and the ability of SEC and Policy makers to sift through millions of documents - drafted both instantly using the Blackberry type of communications and legally using the tradional corporate culture! And the craftiness with which it has been timed and released appropriately to reach a wider audience and get the maximum effect.

Rolling back a bit to the Tiger Woods saga with his personal life and the crumbling and embarassing evideces of the mobile enebled sms communications points to the influences of personal behaviour beyond the corporate adoption of technological innovations.

As people move more and more towards left brain induced cultural bahaviour this change is bound to lead to more changes in corporate and personal culture and communication.

May be Harvard and Stanford will start offering innovative business courses to executies to cope with Instant Gratification in Corporate Policies and Communications!

Or Dr Phil and Ms Oprah will collaborate to aid people with better form of inter-personal relationships to cope with shattered personal lives due to instant gratifications due to technology addiction!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Ms Merkel & Mr Brown join the Goldman Bashing!

Well the headline says it all!

With so much happening Domestically - both flip flopping to keep their head above the ground they have found Goldman as an easy tool to sandbag their difficiency!

A coat of Sugar is not enough for Mr Brown to swing the English in the upcoming election..and Ms Merkel might be licking the wounds as an ambition to dominate the new & fledgling Euro and EU lead World will be put in hold for a long time as US Economy & Foundation gets the needed distraction and time to fix itself!

We cannot seem to close the discussion of Euro , Dollar and the FInancial Whatever without mentioning the Germany's PIMCO and their wand swaying posterboys - Mr El Erian and his colleagues are quick t the draw on IMF's Greek hand and insist on Greek still being a disaster- it is just another ploy to work the postion - only this time aiding Ms Merkel? Or just trying to be relevnt in their NEW NORM Economy as the world moves towards a normal economic cycle with the usual growth patterns?

God sighted during Mr Obama's NY City visit!

As Mr Obama makes his final rounds before sealing the FInReg deal- Mr Blankenfein joins the address in NYC!

This time there is no getting stuck in the airport & couldn't make it excuse..and obiously its on a different notice!

The effect of a Rotten Apple!

Well...May be!

With the Second coming of MR Jobs, Apple has been on a sort of Technological tear mesmerising Consumers and Wall Street Analysts/Investors alike.

With a casual peek at any Internet forums or replies/comments to articles on Apple reveals how forceful the Admirers of Mr Jobs and Apple are!

Its is kind of becoming a fashion statement with the i-somethings from Apple and the White cord dangling from and around the neck -whether wearing a Blue Pinstripe or a lowdown and BAD Boxer showing Levi's!

And of course the prize is riddled with a ton of fallouts in the competitive Technology arena and the rotten smell of Apple is felt by a handful if not more!

To join the fallout from Apple are

And the list seems to be growing! And lets hope the growing list is not littered with over zealous investors as it scales new walls and valuation on its way to becoming not just the most sought after Technology company but also the most valued company in the Country!

Mr Greece's Plea for Aid..Finally!

After severa months of Blaming everyone from Goldman to conspirators, Demanding EU and the Americans, Fighting wit IMF and other similar EU agencies.....

MR Papandreus of Greece Finally Pleads!

As Greece reels in debt and its consequences of over reliance on external borrowings - has been more than rude and arrogant in blaming everyone else for their in-house problems and DEMANDING everyone to come to the Party in Greece & pay-up fo r the cleanup, making Bond Investors and their EU buddies more than Angry!

And Finally Mr P decides go soft and makes a Plea for help instead of demand.

No matter what the attraction or distration is to this chapter in the Financial Whatever - it certainly is helping US issuance of a ton of debt in Q2- as the yield comes in and the Euro weakens!

Good, Bad & the Ugly!

Buffet as an Investor-

Rajat of McKinsey and a Goldman Insider leaks Buffet's investmet investment ot Mr Rajaratnam - who is involved in a BIG SEC investigation

Mr Rajaratnam Actually buying on Mr Buffet's intention before GS plunged 50%!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Printing Money - Only for the Sophisticated & Powerful!!

Yes - its not for the ordinary!

Coming from the Financial Whatever every Government around he world has been printing money and dont appear to be ending it soon!

And US decides to introduce a new $100 Bill to reduce competition!

A lot more sophisticated & involved which cannot be reproduced using your HP printer anymore!

More colorful & 3D holographs and the whole nine yards- its like a new Avatar for Granpa Ben ( Benjamin Franlin ) while Cousin Ben ( Ben Bernanke) keeps dropping money from the sky!

The old Ink pen to find fakes to be replced by 3D Glasses?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Apple defies Newton's Law!

Inching closer to Mr Gates & Microsoft!

Having lost the popularity & technology contest to newcomers and innovators- Microsoft is looking at a very high bar set by Apple and Mr Jobs!

with a solid pipeline ahead - Apple and Steve Jobs are looking at beating Microsoft and has a very good chance of becoming the most valuable American Company in a matter of weeks!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Exposing Wall Street - Dealing with the Intellectual Criminals!

The Godfather era paves way for Wall Street Dons!

New York Times has been persistent in its pursuit to expose Goldman Sachs and its underhand dealings for the past several years - and very intense in the past couple of years since the Financial Whatever hit the World Economy!

As it is evident in the SEC charges - more and more dirt is coming out of the carpet and it appears that the Financial Dons of Wall Street - dating back to the J P Morgan era - have always run the Economy for its direct benefits Legally - Morally or otherwise.

Goldman might win this War as a corporation and might continue to profit from the Financial Underpinnings of the Global Economy for a long long time - but one thing that comes out strong from the modern era media is - good Investigative Journalism is still crucial to society and no matter what the delivery mechanism is good reporters and editors are always the ones who make news news-worthy and make this a better and safer place.

And New York Times has done it one more time - giving a BIG hand in Exposing Goldman Sachs - and the rest of WallStreet Dons even after knowing what the consequences will be going not just against the WallStreet GodFathers but also against popular sentiment amongst people with Money and power!

World's Biggest & Baddest is BACK- with a little help from China!

General Motors - not your Granpa's car or company anymore!

The fastest growing market - China has embraced GM and its cars like how the Yankees did a century back!

After a tumultuous couple of decade and a couple of years where its market leadership was temporarily kept on hold- the Boys from Detroit are back!

China - the soon to the world's largest market for automobile market - is expanding like crazy and non other than GM has the market leadership position - by a HUGE margin..with Toyota and the rest of the Japanese car makers covered in quality issues and credibility problems - GM under the stewardship of Mr Whitacre will thrive and start growing like a champion again!

Has Taj Mahal Moved to 200 West Street?

The Taj Mahal syndrome seems to be working in Goldman's Case as well.

The move to the new and sophisticated Goldman Palace on 200 West Street - kept cold by 1.6 Million ice blocks - freshly made every night in its basement - is still underway!

And the fallout from the Financial Whatever seems to be piling on every day on Goldman Sachs!

With the Regulation pretty much in the bag with this recent SEC saga - can this bring down Goldman for good?

Given the fact that almost every one in the block is dead or wounded badly and the world still relying on borrowed money to have commercial transactions- there is still an addiction for the Goldman like boys and there is no one as brutal and brilliant like the boys at 200 West! And they are wired & connected - may be not in Pennsylvania Ave - atleast for now! A company that runs like a well greased Italian Mafia - has more than a bullet left to storm out of this Wall Street scandal - which is more an Economic falacy than an isolated organizational coverup!

May be the Taj Mahal syndrome will be handicapped by the badboy CoverBoy syndrome and GS will be one of the few to break the Taj Mahal syndrome!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Living Without the Rating Agencies!

Moody's, S&P , Fitch and the Award Goes to...!

Well the World of Financial Shenanigans are betting based on a handful of players and the Global Economy & the Politics of Money relies on their integrity & Stability!

There are over 10,000 Financial Institutes in US alone and possibly an equal number if not more in Insurance Institutes and Agencies that have the opportunity to bet and hedge on anything and everything from Mortgage meltdown to plastic surgery disasters.

There are possibly another 10,000 plus Government and Corporate entities and players who actively take and give money into and from the Wheels of Economy!

And the cost and value for everything is finally based on ....These three Agencies!

Countries can collapse at the click of a mouse by any of the individuals in these three agencies..

Companies and other entities can fail or gain based on the same..

Trillions and Trillions on a daily basis are priced and traded based on What..?

Does this define the delicate nature of the economy in which we live? Or just shows how easy it is to manipulate and manage risks and rewards?

Talking velocity of Money or Elasticity of Value finally comes down to an average Joe Bloe in one of these three agencies and his or her opinion or mood!

Yes there are methodologies and mathematical models which are used-

Yes there are feedback mechanism that is ensuring authenticity & integrity-

yes there is corporate governance that makes it transparent and accountable-

And still Three Agencies whose motivation to operate is profitability- And ofcourse we wouldn't want it any other way!

Are they too Big to fail or just too stupid to exist?

Are we close to getting a medium of transaction that will be fool proof and devoid of any manipulation?

Yes there is no need for it today-

Yes there is no know How of defining such a medium today-

Yes there is mechanism to ensure acceptability in this Global Economy-

With Internet and Information reaching every individual at epic proportions - we are heading closer to that time which needs a Global initiative that will redefine this New Medium of Transaction!

War Escalates- Capitol Hill to Capital Market!

A week or more went with no action and the market settled and continued its upward movement with Financials joining Technology in the leadership circle!

The bad breath from the Financial Whatever were fading and the once bad boys Citi, Bank of America and Goldman - yes even Goldman Sachs were making strides in fading in the background of economic good news!

Lights out even from Mr V@#k-er!

As they said about Mr Bush's era strategy after 9-11: take the war to their side so that Homeland is safe- seems to have rubbed off during the financial Whatever as Greece kept Euro and the rest of the world busy with their survival tactics - enabling Wall Street and Washington to focus internally to recoup and recover from teh past indulgences!

What appears like a second wind for the Obama Administration after the Healthcare Reform Bill seems to be storming through Wall Street Once Again! Looks like an opportune time to pay catchup in Transparency and Accountability while the rest of the world is struggling and keeping the fight far from Home!

The latest saga - On Goldman Sachs might be more than political when one looks at the Transparency & Accountability of Financial instruments and practices - or the lack there of.
The Current battle is more than a Madoff or Goldman - it is the very rot of Wall Street and the Global Financial underpinnings of the World Commerce.

The fight escalating to a different level - moving from Dirty politics to outright throat grabbing - seems to be reaching a pinnacle. Agenda from the White House seems to have a stronger bite than even from those Mighty Wall Street Moghuls who have managed to hold off Washington independence for over a century - and the New Sheriff seems to bring more than a gun to the party!

While opportunities will exist from this fall out in the Financial Industry - with the Economy setting itself up for a nice stable growth - even better opportunities is in the Technology space as the World gears up for Mobility driven shorter upgrae cycles!

Friday, April 16, 2010

The other Story!

With FinReg just around the corner - A major cat is out of the bag!


No politicians on TV! We havent seen a single event or opportunity passed up by those Politicians - ever since that Financial Whatever!

Not today- no one!

With over a Trillion dollars worth of Government debt coming in Q2 - with the uncertainity in the market created by GS certainly makes it easy to peddle the paper!

The story behind the book is never clean and nice- but this one coul play for a longer period with very limited participation from Main Street...

May be the timing might have been planned - however that also bodes well for American Economy & ever expanding debt burden- atleast for now!

All that Glitters is not ....Well!

Mr Paulson's next Homecoming bet - GOLD may not head in the same direction that his previous bet..Betting the HOUSE...headed!

The inside story of the BIG trade is more interesting than the book itself!

Will this change the way we manage money and assets?

Is there a reaason to believe that the foundations are being laid for a New Medium?

Who will be the Last Man Standing?

oh-Bloody..Oh-Blaadaa...Its the Poster Boys of Sub-Prime!

The Goldman Saga continues and this time the Poster Boy of Sub-Prime His Highness Mr Paulson Himself is dragged into the Party!

Is this an opportunity or just the way of doing business in Wall Street!

It appears Fin Reg will be inked & Sealed very quickly!

It Appears November is tooo far from sealed and we will see a lot more from here to November!

There is no smart win in Wall Street - it appears!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Where is Eric?

Searching for Eric? You cant use Google!

May be Kleiner & J D might be able to help?

And he is actually headed to Bloom!

After spending close to 500Million dollars the Bloom Box is ready to blossom!

And it needs an Eric to make a Google out that technology & organization- May be Eric is incubating and ready to take Bloom to the mass!

If he did- yes Bloom Boxes should be available at Fry's soon!

The Old Dogs of technology are Back!

Internet Bubble!

Dotcom Burst!

Technology exuberance!

Name calling was in every news media - from Prime time TV new to even your cousin's neighborhood city news!

A decade later - with every one carrying a device - from cellphones to ipads to mobile whatever - computing and attaching to some form of computer seems to be a given!

The darlings of the dot com - the likes of Cisco & Sun Microsystems - scaled walls never scaled by any company before and then...


Fell from the Sky - one after the other!

Thud, Thud, Thud and Thud!

Intel, Microsoft,Oracle,Applied Materials, Dell,....not to mention the real darlings of Dotcom like CMGI,Inktomi,Lykos & WebVan who folded and just vaporised!

Then there were new business model companies like eBay,Google,Amazon...who flourished!

And the big daddies like Lucent, MCI Worldcom & the likes got coal in their faces!

Thos who survived after a decade are still down 50-80% if not more!

Yes the Old Dogs from technology Intel,Microsoft,Cisco,Dell,Oracle,Applied Materials, Micron Technology,Yahoo,Seagate...are down 40,50,60 plus percent from their bubble era days!

They have been on a tear the last 12 months or so from the March 2009 Bottom!

The are all cash rich - 10,20,30 and some more Billions is CASH!

Revenues double and tripled since the dot com bottom!

some even throw pennies as divs!

It Appears they are becoming the staples of the Technology lifestyle which is here to stay!

And The Old Dogs - Intel, Microsoft,Dell, Oracle,Applied Materials,Yahoo,Micron Technology look fundamentally cheap and are waking up!

Like the Phoenix from the ashes!

The Old Dogs of Seven - will double in the next 24 months

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Real Time Government Intervention or intrusion?

This is an Internet age where we live and strive for near zero latency for almost everything.

Living with Twitter and Facebook for communication enables us to spread information and rumours very effectively with no delay in delivery!

Actions and Responses are what we strive to learn, teach and achieve from elementary school to high flying Harvard Business!

From Tea Party to Policy promotions we use the new media very efficienty!

To have a Government which got swept into power using these tools will act no less than in internet speed - no matter whether it is prudent or not.

The latest, which might show how delicate and precarious this new medium can play , in the Washington Drama is the Bill that will passed to Ban Airlines from charging for Carry Or bags- in response to a no name, low cost carrier trying to get media attention Airline trying to charge for Carry on bags!

When Washington and the Politicians have been nothing but dormant the past few decades - wake up and come with a Bill for such a trivial act by a almost non-existent airline.....its a Shame!

Phoenix Rising from Wall Street to Main Street?

An extended period of near zero lending to Wall Street and Main Street celebrates eventually!

As the earning season starts to hit the start line - the usual lagger didnt urprise anyone by missing and whining- Alcoa!

But Mr Dimon - who off-late has been on a not so popular road to Washington & Syracuse, seems to have hit the right cord with with a Mountain of Cash!

So did Intel!

And ofcourse not so surprising number from CSX, given the fact one has to haul things around!

Retail Marching to a steady drumbeat from teh consumers - showing the resiliance of the American consumer!

And ofcourse - no iPad to You - message to the Rest of the World from Apple, due to exces domestic demand- shows an increased appetite for high end electronics & high tech gears from around the world.

All those printing & dropping around by a Chopper seems to be finally showing up from Wall Street to Main Street!

Dow 14500 appears to be destined, finally!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Technology Bubble 2.0!

With Mr Quattrone escaping with the gauntlet and the guillotine - is back to doing what he is good at!

IPO spinning and building the Technology hotbed!

After a decent IPO Mr Quattrone is working with Goldman - the other controversial Wall Street firm , to say the least , in repackaging Palm!

With Ms Whitman buying her way into the Governor's Mansion- Maybe, and Harvard and CNBC going live on Building a 140 character - Business plan for Twitter & Mr Jobs going back to his original Avatar Apple 1.0 from the Newton Era....And the WhiteHouse corridors going beyond Mr O's Blackberry is littered with billionaires from Google, Oracle,Microsoft and the likes...

Well what else is new ....

Tech Bubble 2.0?

Bubble is never too bad until it is busted..This might be the beginning given how large technology market is!

Now that India and China have opened up their consumers and their billion plus population to consumable type electronics - it will be a while before we burst this bubble!

Only a couple of years back we heard the pundits call the Mobile market saturated and dead - Wrong!

This year they will sell 1.2 Billion handsets! And it is growing double digits!

From Industrial Applications to Household Applications re being reinvented!

If the economy hold - this bubble might have ways to go!

May not the Twitters and Facebooks that will stand the wind - but there are a boat load of companies and technologies that will grow and yes they will grow big!

From Toyota to Lexus!

Consumer Reports warning customers not to buy Lexus SUV!

Who will be next - J D Powers?

Now that will be the icing on the cake!

Sleeping at the wheels all these years & finally waking up when its off the freeway?

Had the opportunity to walk into a traditional Sushi bar the other day in Japan Town in San Jose- bay area recently hit hard by the pull out of Toyota - is still amazed at why they closed the plant when most of the Californians drive Japanese cars and it is this state that made Japan and their manufacturers the fame and power when they needed the most after their initial quality disasters in the 70s and 80s.

Over hearing some people talking about the recent Toyota's recall and how people in Japan perceived the episode was appalling! The common story line revolved around how Toyota overtook GM and that is the reason why Americans are upset!

Is this patriotism or just a case of Denial and arrogance?

Back in the U.S.S.R!!

World 2.0

Cold War 2.0

Move over China and Iran!

Russia is back and now with an Economic Vengeance on its back pocket to rebuild and scoop up all those bricks scattered everywhere during the Reagan era.

From Georgia - may be with Vodka! As the world was mesmerised with the Chinese Opening ceremony Mr Putin's Vintage Army rolled into Georgia!

A slow arm twisting around the neighboring nations followed with the world watching with ignorance when the Financial Whatever flooded everywhere!

Russian backed Kyrgyztans and their bloody coup!

Polish Accident in Russia and Mr Putin himself heading the investigation!

Germany & Ms Merkel warming upto Russia and Mr Medvedev while slapping the Olympians and the likes in Eurozone!

Throw in all the chaos and unrest in other alphabet soup nations in and around Russia and you have a good story-line!

While MR Obama and his able administration is focusing domestically both to keep the economic boat afloat and keep the Wall street Pirates at bay- Mr Putin's focus seems to be well served in rebuilding Russia and might be close to achieving his dreams of reclaiming the lost bricks which turned nightmare during the Gorbachev era!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Is Tiger an Endangered Species?

Looking at the return of Tiger Woods one has to Wonder!

And the ferocity of Nike and the likes to flood the gates with Feel good ad money certainly does not look that way!

From the mouth of the Prince!

Citi Was not Too big to Manage....says His Highness Mr Prince..

But it was- to Manage it Right?

More and more wear less and less!

As the old Wall street adage goes...As the Hem lines on those skirts rise so goes the market!

Now there is a ticker to make money with...As the market has been climbing up Limited (LTD) , no pun intended, has been raking in money selling more and more of those items that cover less and less of their patrons from their Victoria's Secret collections!

From Prince to Maestro takes Blame...Now What?

Another day fades into oblivion and another High place & Highly compensated individual admits having missed the boat!

A wise man once said "Victory has a Thousand Father and Defeat is stuck being an orphan"!

One would have thought that we would still be hunting for that evasive father for theis Financial Whatever.....However here we are half-way into the investigation and we have a boat load of Fathers- from Mr Greenspan admitting being Wrong 30% of the time on the one hand and the likes of Mr Rubin, Mr Prince etc admitting they missed the whole enchilada and are Sorry!

It was more than funny to see Mr Greenspan accusing the elites & politicians in Washington to take the otherside by claiming Amnesia after having danced to the same tune all thse years during the buildup!

Is this a Forgive & Forget moment or Pay the Penalty ....Admissions of mistakes is no more accepted as pardonable & excusable?

The Moral High ground on this might still be evasive & far from Heaven but the road to hell should be littered with those responsible for the destruction of hard earned wealth of the common!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A trip to India to persuade China?

Mr Geithner cut short his trip to India and makes a quick stop over in China!

Even as Mr Geithner gets warmed upto the Indian hospitality - Beijing loosens its stand on Yuan!

Is this a big spender negotiating with the suppliers?

From Japan to China to India!

Would India learn from Japan and China and keep its market open and lets its domestic market grow? If it does - it will give the much needed partner that can persuade other developed economies to start opening up or lose in the global market.

Irony of Borrowing...!

Market is worried that the American consumer is borrowing less!

Banks & Financial Institutions are seeing less demand for loans!

The Economy could go into a double dip....Now that is a real irony given what lead the economy into a tail spin!

What is better? 70% right or 30% wrong?

What will it take to leave Dr Greenspan alone?

Would 30% of the time being wrong, a lot of time being wrong? Made a lot of mistakes?

When the Maestro was at his best - he was speaking the Greenspan Speak - which no one understood and the world made money!

From Wall street to Athens!

Everyone loved him!

When he speaks normal language Everyone unerstands but nobody likes his message or him!

A person in beyond retirement age & who refuses retire - has admitted that out of 21 years of at the chair he has been right only 70% of the time - that is being wrong more than 6 years ..... it is not whether he had been wrong for so many time that is relevant - what is more important is how stale the current investigation into the Financial Whatever has come to- A person of such credibility and calibre is being humiliated by a group of politicians and opportunists who have failed to live upto their responsibilities of their elected position & ho time and again have lived upto the high ethical and moral standards that they claimed during their effort to win the election....

As Greenspan & Goldman Denies...!

Another day inches away from the Financial Whatever and we are still trying to pin those Donkeys with the flag!

As Dr Greenspan climbs the hill of blame in Washington - Goldman denies it was responsible for the undoing!

The strong arm tactics of the Obama administration is irking even the very core of Progressives who brought about the sweeping election win for Mr Obama!

It is a telling evidence of the cracks that are showing in the Administration's support reading the recent article in WSJ about the frustration felt by hard core supporters like JP Morgan's Mr Dimon.

Listening at the early redericks and anger shown at Dr Greenspan it makes it hard not to wonder if the Washington efficacy is at stake? Is America headed in the same direction as the rest of the world where the focus revolves around blaming and penalising the past and less focus on solving today's & tomorrow's issues?

As Dr Greenspan articulates his inability to monitor let alone control financial markets and cost of funding at a macro level with their policies - while the world was and is mesmerised ever other week trying to gyrate with the every single letter and word that is spelled...and with more and more transparency brought accidentally through the availability of Internet and the every promising user created content - it leads to near zero latency in spreading emotions....and it is setting up nicely for a new order along with a new norm of financial underpinnings for a medium of transaction that is different from the one brought to us by Her Majesty!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Escape velocity...Summers One step ahead?

Mr Summers , the Economic Adviser to Mr Obama Adimistration has been quick to draw in the past several months to defend the Economic reforms and Policy changes when criticised by Germany's PIMCO and their able team of Mr El Erian , Mr Gross and Mr Greenspan.

From New Norm to Excess Printing the German company's team has been getting the right buzz word to disrupt the stock recover and trying to twist the hands of Mr Obama's administration like their successful period during the Bush era and teh Financial Whatever time span.

Th is time around under the watch of the new Sherriff - Mr Summers and their Economic Team have been loosing no time in defending their policies and fighting the campaigns of PIMCO.

This time around - with the Jobs number looming and the stock market recovery under tremendous pressure from the fixed income market - Mr Summers from London talks about Job Recovery & how we are close to Escape Velocity....Not knowing this after a not so surprising Jobs Number - Mr El Elrian talking in a TV panel in CNBC being skeptical of the number talks about we are far from Escape Velocity...!!!

Is the clock changing?

Is this the initial step in a long journey to economic recovery?

Finally the Administration thinking and looking ahead to be a step ahead of the competition?

From Newton's Apple to Apple's Newton II..!

Simplicity in approach!

Elegance in Delivery!

We have come a long way in creating appetite for intellectual quest- from one Newton to another - of a different kind to a different era!

Call me old Geek or just a Geezer - may be difficult to comprehend but given how the young and hungry are swarming the offering from Mr Jobs and Apple - it is evident that the new millenium is embracing change and innovation at a faster clip than a similar period during the Industrial revolution and this time around the Internet revolution is at the consumer consumption and empowerment level which will create wildfire in bringing more innovation and products enhancing the lifestyle of people!

Friday, April 2, 2010

oooff! Now that's behind us!

Yes, The Jobs Creation report!

162k and the past couple of months revised favorably!

Germany's PIMCO and its new found Hero / spokesperson - Mr El Erian & his NEW NORM theory were seeing themselves on the defense on CNBC - for the first time in a long long time!

With the Equity market closed & the bond market open, in anticipation?, the reaction wasn't dramatic!

What is Good is Good or Bad?

Eitherway we are headded in the right direction given where corporate heads are focusing these days - new products and new market which will lead to normalised growth and expansion, if not forever atleast for quite a while!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Looks like the First 100 Days..May be till November?

First One Hundred days of Mr Obama's administration was like a bullet train running through Washington with no destination in sight.

From Policy changes to Political maneuvering it was very carefully orchestrated to balance Wall Street sentiments and Main Street Populist needs.

From Bail outs of Financial Institution to expanding entitlements to the common - no stopping the political punishments waiting from the administration to those who stood in the way of reforms - as some veterans leave politics for good while others jump back on the wall to see the fever before punging back again!

Then the Healthcare stalemate and the 100 day burn out was trending towards the usual Washington redericks and politicking!

Till now!

Now that the Healthcare reform is muscled through with minimal political damage and still a long stretch before November- it looks like the Obama Administration is off to another healthy clip!

From Financial reforms to Educational changes are appearing with much more vigor!

Not to juggle just a couple - as the new Drilling and exploration in the home front after 20 plus years of going dry!

It certainly looks like "Vintage" Obama working the changes while the campaign trail for November is just beginning!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Mr Gasparino and his following!

A couple of years ago - this story would have taken the money managers and news reporters drooling for replay - like the Apple story!

When Mr Gasparino was with CNBC he WAS the go to man for anything inside stroy on Wall Street!

Financial Whatever CNBC rating maching relied solely on Mr Gasparino!

In his new assignment with FOX - his news - though as NewsWorthy as they were before - are finding itself in the trash bin like every other WSJ embraced Fox Business News!

Now that could be an opportunity!

Today the story was the usual culprit - Goldman Sachs and their money making capability and their about to conclude quarter!

According to Mr Gasparino - Goldman hit it out of the Park! Now this is not an easy one to digest for Mr Gasparino - who is normaly critical of Goldman and their covetted alumni- including Mr Paulson - who refuese to talk to Mr Gasparino!

But Goldman reversed its early morning advance and dropped over 3 dors from the high!

May be it was Mr Volcker's meeting with the White House & their staff was weighing in every one's mind - but still -

With the Weekend coverage and a positive mention in Barrons - this apears to be a very good opportunity - Once again to load up on Goldman Sachs!


Is China hiding its holding?

China has been in the story from every directions!

Economic recovery to Selling Nukes!

Currency manipulations to dumping US Treasury!

Labor abuse to censorship!

While they seem to be new 800 pound Gorilla in the export driven economy with a ton of American papers- they seem to be silently diversifying their reserves - As the street speaks!

Or is it possible that they are hiding their holdings - by moving the exposure to Chinese owned and managed funds from outside China?

Looking at the relationship between Washington & Beijing - reading between the lines after scarping all the noise - it certainly appears that way!

Both policy makers and politicians alike from both the countries understand why they are wedded to their hips and don't want this to break- atleast till that point in time when the global economy is a real corporate Mecca and not a political gambling!

Is it Newsworthy? The CNBC Standard??

Monday Wall Street Journal speculates on What has been the hottest company in Technology - Apple!

CNBC picks up the wire and runs with the Story!

The normally loud Fast Company gang which is very Apple friendly - this is a REAL HOT story!

Go through the WSJ story - the usual speculation with no credible backing from any of Apple spokes person- the usual storyline from folks at Infinite Loop in Cupertino!

The tape loves the replay on CNBC - And that's good enough for CNBC folks to identify a news worthy piece when it airs it!

Every 10 minutes - their Silicon Valley chief Mr Goldman - is all over it - I mean all over the WSJ article!

From Analysts to Chief executives : The same story!

Every company that is remotely associated with this story has changed directions on this over play by Mr Goldman and his able team at CNBC!

Apple inches closer to Microsoft!

Verizon inches closer to Apple!

RIM scratching its PALM!

While AT&T thinking of their over paying customers ditching?

And the folks at FOX scratching their head - as CNBC runs through their (WSJ - a new member in the NEWS Corp fold) tabloid like story over and over and over and....and keeping the loyal Apple viewers and analysts alike to their reporters!

From Mr Gross to Mr Greenspan!

Started by Mr El Erian a few months back...joined voicefully by Mr Gross and finally their buddy & colleague Mr Greenspan explained it all on Bloomberg!

Yes the German company's PIMCO is at it again bad mouthing and jaw boning the treasury market to gain power and money!

They have succeeded in the past! More than once and rather consistently!

And ofcourse they do not have a stellar performance during the Obama time and the Chicago team! They got slapped a few times and the Economic team of Mr Obamahas been quick in the past shut them up!

And then there was the Greasy experience when even Mr Gross underestimated the Euro impications of a structurally weak union and currency!

Can they succeed this time around?

Given the short experience we have about the Obama administration and the agressive and vidicaative Mr Summers with the matured Mr Geithner- it should pass as spring gives way to Summer and the economic overhang from the higher interest rate should fade and give way to better employment number going into the holiday season towards the end of the year!

Breaking the Rimm, Finally?

Rumours about Apple, Again!

And this time around it is rattling the entire smartphone market!

From Chipmakers to Wireless providers!

And Mr Gates.....looking behind at Mr Jobs!

Simplicity & Elegance- trailing in volume but made up in quality!

What else can be made - well right from a mass market voice phone to all the way to ...much much more than its current version.

Very Well then - how far? well for starters - just a quick sprint past Microsoft's capitalisation- not a big feat given they are only $60 dollars from where Apple is - given the events between iPad and iPhone refresh to iPhone may be Verizon - well it might quickly surpass everyone above and might be crowned the most valuable company in the country by Thankgiving!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Google - An infrastructure play?

Google in the recent few months has been in the headlines acting as a proxy to the Obama administration trying to break the Great Wall of China!

Berlin Wall is history! Can Google and the likes are a new form of Reaganism trying to break the barriers between nations and politicians in bringing prosperity to humanity globally?

From innovation to productivity generations after generations have come to accept some form of rule and authority - from Authoritarian to democratically elected politicians - and every other form in between.

For the first time - might be a change of guard , if not a final but appears like a beginning , a Corporate giant in the making is standing for freedom and the cause of the common.

At the outset it appears like one of those politically motivated and ill timed war. Looking deeper into the implications and what this could mean historically given what is happening in the Medium of transaction and the financial industry - one couldn't ignore the fact that we are squarely looking at a new form of revolution that could lead to a new order and governance- if not in the Now but sure is an indication of what to come in the decades ahead.

In the meanwhile - this could be an opportunity for Investors to capitalize on Google shares and its potential to more than double in the next few years.

Rationalities for Google are several fold-

a commoditized advertisement spending making it easier for every budget from under a dollar to sky high limits to participate

a cash participation without the overhead of distribution making it easier for any skill level and resource to participate in the cash

Bing or no bing - one major element that people forget is the infrastructure that Google is building that could dwarf anyone's comprehension.

It is not just the technology that makes Google what they are today- it is the cost of entry and the barrier has been raised multiple fold by building the most complicated and scalable infrastructure. Which will take a real visionary to keep expanding the processing , storing and streaming capabilities...in addition to having the bandwidth to serve globally to any corner of the world irrespective of the volume of data with almost zero latency.

With every possible application that can be used using cloud - is being converted into an affordable application available for free to end user.

Looking at the past financial disaster - Google is one of the few that managed to retain its revenue base- showing how compelling their value proposition to their customer base.

Also looking at the last couple of quarters - the transition of Advertisement dollar from traditional media to net based campaigns is accelerating even amongst the traditional industries. From Automobiles to pharmaceuticals companies are increasing their budget to the net. In the next couple of years - it is clear that the exodus to net is a given and that will dramatically increase the size of the Google pie.

Given its current revenue base and market capitalisation - it is clear that it can peak out at $700B - which appears like a ridiculous target looking at its current base. Barring any economic melt down - Google is on its way to achieve it and it will be very evident in its upcoming Q1 numbers - which will be the first real quarter after the Financial Whatever!

Friday, March 26, 2010

A peek at the parking lots in Silicon Valley!

It was a week day- early afternoon!

A little after a typical late lunch Silicon Valley style in Palo Alto- Driving into the Stanford Shopping center was a little neck to neck traffic!

Drive around the mall looking for a spot - not so easy!

This is not a strange day - seems to be the symptoms these days in Silicon Valley!

Malls , Restaurants and strip malls- all the same story! After a couple of years of so so traffic in the malls and shopping centers- as the stock market climbs and the fortunes of high tech employees closely tied to the stock options - it appear we are seeing the second coming of Silicon Valley companies.

Unlike the dot com bubble when the market and cities were littered with worthless option papers and shut down companies- this time around the fortunes are more evident in looking at the war chest of cash in the tech companies - revenue seems to be leap frogging from a much higher level- companies racing past 10-20 Billion in revenue at a healthy 20-30 percent organic growth seems not so much of a head turner.

Unlike the IPO boom of the Frank Quattron era - we are seeing more and more companies staying put and far from Wall Street!

As the world relies more and more on technological break throughs for a daily embracement in everyday lifestyles- it is clear that Silicon Valley, as it integrates itself globally - is booming once again. And unlike the past era boom - this time around cash rich and cautiously optimistic!

A break for Goldman?

In the middle of another Wall street scandal and shenanigans! This time it is in the Muni Bonds...

Every institute that is who is who is named..And guess what Goldman is missing!

After two years of being on the not to envy list on every single occasion from Capital Hill to cross roads in Athens- Goldman finally misses a list which at the initial check appears to include everyone from Lehman to Citi and even the blue touch J P Morgan!

Lets Listen to Mr G!

Mr Greenspan may be a little rusty to the Press and in popularity taking a major blame for the recent Financial Whatever- which happened a full couple of years after he handed over the torch!

However he DID warn a full 6 months ahead of the then pending Recession...the language not so subtle like during his Fed days but in black and white and simple language!

From Irrational Exuberance to Statistical Illusions - Mr Greenspan has always been right on the look ahead!

His latest view in an interview on Bloomberg calls for a new term optimism and a long term bleak outlook given the debt situation.

The opportunistic bet is to be Bullish in the market near term and try to have protection on the long term. Unless ofcourse we believe in topline growth to the US Economic expansion by manufacturing export driven by utility and technology disruptions to existing process and IPs- which is a real possibility given where we are in available product sets and innovation in the pipeline.

Another Greasy deal in Europe!

Growing up is not so easy especially when the grown ups are intimidating!

Final score is less stellar than the grinning face of Mr Pappa on closing a deal with IMF and EU. Is it a new trend in the market influenced in the borderline of blackmailing and moral hazard?

From Bond Vigilantes to Sovereign manipulations and blackmailing...it is a new order emerging which paves a rocky road but a certain path to an eventual change in the medium of transaction.

It is not if ...it is what , how and when!

From Caterpillar to ATT...Joining the Tea Party?

Healthcare and Obamacare is still in its infancy and the ink is yet to find its dry spell!

Obamanomics and Obamacare seems to be squarely on the cross-wires of Mr Owens , Caterpillar's Chief!

While the graveyard was being littered with economic casualties, Mr Owens slapped Mr Obama during his ambitious visit to Caterpillar on the heel of Mr Owens laying off 10,000 of its workers. As a shareholder, yes it was a feel good moment and might even give a bounty full of gold coins to Mr Owens for the layoffs...and not his immediate slamming of Obamacare on the eve of passing the Healthcare reform.

Soon to follow Mr Owens is our Dear fellow from John Deere and ATT.

Is this a mere coincidence or a political gambit on the heals of Tea party folks stirring anger all over the country on the Obamacare?

It is good to see Caterpillar more than double from this blogs earlier assessment of Caterpillars opportunity in the middle of Financial Whatever...and we still fell it is the most opportune company and is the best investment for any economic expansion- from its products and cost structure..however it will be prudent for Mr Owens to focus internally and leave the politicising to the Tea Party and those FOXy folks!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Not So Soon...Says Mr Trichet!

Pass the Buck-et Said Ms Merkel to IMF!

USA, Dollar & those Damn Yanks! May be short sighted?

Mr Sarkozy whining for a while and hiding behind the Walls of Ms Merkel looking across the ocean from that Lady of Liberty to light some fire?

Euro is ambitious- yet written with the wrong agenda!

Dollar - To Replace or Not To?
Torching those Olympians might not be the answer when you have to look abroad for the bucket to be filled with Dollars! A weak Euro is still good for the strong and leaving the weak wondering about solidarity!

Mr Trichet is right to insist on staying away from IMF - a Dollar and a proxy for those Yankees! If Euro is to be!

Is Duetche Mark and Francs are far from reality? Is Ms Merkel right in dragging Mr Sarkozy to rattle the ECB who have become very powerful under Mr Trichet who has become larger than life who failed to make the final run for the Gold during the recent Financial Whatever- which could have brought Europe to its knees along with Euro while letting the Dollar and the Yanks be crowned for now and letting the D-day wait for awhile! As the power centers of Europe moved away from Germany & France and circled around Brussels- it is time to rethink!

May be re-ink the deal- while Mr Trichet would like to leave a legacy behind and might be right in his IMF aversion - but given Dr Merkel's Intellectual interpretation of the recent Financial Whatever- it might be a disaster not to IMF!

For the time being the market obviously not too happy with some kind of Bail-out for Greece - thus acting as a EU backstop like the Mr Bernenke Put for those Wall Street Gamblers - this game is not over before the fat lady sings!

And as Mr Trichet joins Mr Greenspan after a glorious time only to be smeared at the goal post- Dollar will enjoy its second coming!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Loadup German and Euro companies!

Economy around the globe is getting on a stable footing even as the Euro Zone politicians manage to keep the spotlight on their less stellar behaviour on solidarity!

As the weaker currency and a solid backing behind Dollar is giving a good opportunity to start cherry picking some of the European companies which rely heavily on export. With India and China hitting on all cylinders, Japan seems to have escaped the Toyota disaster.

With US economy looking at a brighter future- the export oriented multi-nationals from Europe will start showing stelar growth to their bottom line and their stock performance will be better than most markets.

American Corporate Borrowing cheaper!

A year old rally and the fading memory from the Financial Whatever!

As Europe falters in soul searching US Dollar and American Policy Makers - both political and otherwise are capitalising and cherishing the moment!

American corporations are seeing their credibility increasing as the debt market softens its hold on liquidity.

As the first quarter ends we are seeing the corporate borrowing cheaper than US Government!

Now that is very solid for old age companies - the Industrial complex- will see their incentive to expand with low cost capital is a boon for the Economy.

With Technology booming and Financials holding up well and looking at a brighter future- and the Industrial joining the party- thats more than half of the economy it is clear that American Economy is fully functional and ready for a sustained growth.

Blackberry to Silicon Valley!

American Politics and Policies have seen influences from Industrial pioneers to Wall Street mavericks!

From New York to Detroit!

From JP Morgans to Rockefellers!

From Standard Oil to General Motors!

From Domestic policies to Foreigh relations!

When Mr Obama stormed into Whitehouse with a broad smile on one side and a blackberry on the other....it was more that an symbolic indication of where Technlogy is headed.

Move over Detroit and New York!

A kid is in town- Silicon Valley!

From Chuck Phillips to Eric Schmidt- we are seeing more and more Silicon Valley executives circling Washington.

From Carly Fiorina to Meg Whitman are climbing the political ladders which used to be littered by Wall Street moghuls and Industrial pioneers!

Technology and Internet has been ubiquitous and omni present these days and seen in every corners of our life....and Finally Washington and Main street will be feeling the power and force of the people from Technology - from policies to politics!

Walking with a White cord dangling...!

Yes ....iPod, iTouch, iPhone...and the white cord revolution!

Pin stripe , Starched White with Power ties! And the white cord around the neck!

From Wall street to Main street the love grows and Yet....

Tried the i-generations of products and have read and written eagerly about every move by Apple and Steve Jobs!

Still have always resisted the temptations of Apple and disciplined to use products with suitable applicability for my usage!

However it hasn't stopped me from walking into an Apple shop or their presence in places in retails shops from Frys to BestBuy!

As Apple slowly expands its presence in more and more main stream retail as it starts to embrace the mass market...albeit slowly...I drifted into an Apple setup in a Best Buy shop recently!

From its Air to all-in-ones...it is mesmerising and captivating....practicality might be one thing ...but usability and elegance its unbelievable!

Imitation might be the ultimate compliment...but capability to duplicate and offer with Apple's finesse seeps to be a totally different story.

Touch screens from competition seems to be blotchy and sticky at best!

May be not this time...but it was very clear eventually I will fall for it too!

Yes Every one is just a bite away from Apple!

Healthcare and the Obama train!

Finally its here!

The Obamacare and the Political Juggernaut.

It is the socially responsible thing to do! It is a good starter...can it use this as a platform to reaally offer affordale healthcare with no quality compromise.

It is very clear that law of the land is scent marking Washington and policy makers based on the size of the economic contribution to the GDP. From Energy to Healthcare to Wall Street- a dollar spent is a dollar earned!

The political will of the Obama administration is going where no administration in the past have gone!

Public participation visibly is missing contradicting polls and pundits.

There is no anger!

There is no jubiliation!

Outside Washington and the party players and power houses!

Hopefully the Policy makers will do the right thing after having found a way to pass a platform from which real change can be made to bring innovation and cost control to the masses!

Dividends and IPOs!

IPO maret is slowly warming up!

Dividends are going up! Even Starbucks changing its hearts on its dividend policy!

Looks like the corporate world is gaining confidence. With over a Trillion dollar in cash - American Economy could sustain its recent traction and continue to establish a steady growth with employment market expanding in the next few months..And Santa might have lot of work come Christmas

Who would have Thunk? Who-ro??

Not too long ago across the ocean seven seas and seven mountains there was a budding Prince...oh Well who are we kidding?

An Ambitious project, A skyhigh charter with Swiss cheese holes!en

For a while it all appeared too good to be true. And then there where skeptics..fading behind the Dollar bashing and a near melt down possibility of the currency.

Mr Trichet appeared invincible shoeing in casually and forcefully into the legendary Mr Greenspan's! Euro zone and their Monetary policy makers looked headed for the victory lap with Dollar and Yen dusted in the closet.

From the Political will of a few came the single currency monetary union- the near winning medal came through smoke and mirror Monetary independence.

And then Mr Trichet is not to be...the King Maker yet to be crowned!

In the middle of a close to being called a disaster...the Political will of a few from may be a couple- is arranging the funeral of Euro and the voice of MR Trichet echoing from his grave! The vultures circling with the crumbling walls of power in Brussels sprouting al over the ruins of Olympian village and spreading like wild fire!

Can Trichet?

Will Sarkozy?

Should Ms Merkel?

May be Browning the currency with some Tea break?

It is in every one's interest to have a strong balance of power in the capital market and the free market global economy. A vacuum that will be left behind , if Euro were to lose its footing, could and will be easily filled in by a more manipulated currencies - leaving the fragile economies to the hands of a few powerful and wreck less.

Yes it is tough to be black mailed by a runaway train wreck from Greece and Mr Pappa needs to shut his mouth for the sake of saving his country men! It is easy to blame Ms Merkel for all this mess..but Pappa seems to be demanding his rightful guarantee for being fiscally irresponsible?

Yes it is moment to slap the hand to prevent a repeat from others!

Yes Euro could be seen and manipulated for ever if Greece and the likes are allowed to get away.

But this is not the moment to demonstrate strength for punishment but this is the time to bow and step aside to take a breather and regroup- Yes the battle of Greek will be lost ...but the War for Euro and Euro zone solidarity could still be won with MS MErkel and Mr Trichet working hand in hand.

Maybe, Just Maybe....Ms Merkel will and Mr Trichet could!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Is Microsoft Agressive and smart to buy MySpace!

Mr Balmer - here is an opportunity that is better than any Microsoft has looked at in the past in terms of opportunity!

Yes with a foot inside FaceBook it might look like a mute move - however this will give the unbeleivable platform that can be bundled with XbOx Live & other Microsoft Cloud offering which will leapfrog what a social platform can offer compared to whaat Facebook and Twitter can do in a decade.

This will make Microsoft the most compelling player in Technology ONC AGAIN- Is Mr Balmer capable of stepping into an area where they have had a tough time comprehending the landscape?

I Hope so - atleast for the sake of innovation and competition which is needed in this burgeoning space more than any other that we have seen in all areas of technology!

Fedex and the state of Global Economy!

Headine numbers nad reports are impressive!

Whats even more interesting is Fedex re-intating its benefits and compensation tripped away during the Financil Whatever!

Looks like the early sign of growth in employment and economic expansion. One lesson that is gaining more and more traction is that the global integration of Financial market might provide an opportunity to force a Financial catastrophy but is very difficult to derail a expanding capitalistic prosperity when there are 6 billion people growing more and more towards a united cause of prosperity!

Ms Merkel 's dilemma - To Greece or not?

Talking aboout shifting priorities-

On the one hand Ms Merkel is pushing for Euro EXPEL & on the other hand back out of a Euro Bailout for Greece forcing an IMF bailout!

Can Euro be an exclusive club keeping them when they prosper and expelling the poor when they falter?

Moves like these might be difficult to maintain credibility of Euro zone solidarity and force a gradual deterioration of ECB and the council. REcently the policy shifts are red-eyed and bullyed by the politicians and not much from the policy makers.

When the chief of Greece toured global power houses of politics including WhiteHouse - it wasnt apparent that the Greeks and their politicians care for their fiscal mistakes and were squarely forcing their inadeuacies and lack of capabilities on the Financial shenanighans of Wall street.

With Ms Merkel pushing Greece to IMF and still contemplating an EU equivalent for IMF - it makes it a hard sell to support Euro other than to profit from the speculative powers of money - whether they outlaw Derivatives or not

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Apple's Shelf Life is Finite!

iPad and the euphoria surrounding a new category ( or is it a category Killer?) is still warm and flowing!

Apple ended the week with a Strong & ambitious statement of limiting 2 iPads per order for an upcoming release which is a couple of weeks out.

The stock finished with week a with a strong push towards being the most valuable company in America - a shade behind Microsoft and Exxon!

Apple announced - for the first time - a headline grabbing Bonus for its Number 2 man - Mr Cook $22 Million for the most admired company on a winning streak is pittens compared to Silicon Valley & Wall Street bonuses by a mile of not more. What strikes as more alarming is the reason given - shoeing in for Jobs during his absence!!

Apple finished the previous quarter with a $50 Billion run rate and Mr Jobs was vocal in claiming the number one pot in Wireless category!

Apple keeps gaining leadership role and position in every category it enters- from mobile smart phone to digitized music.

With over $40 Billion in cash and piling ton of it from every category every month - may be only Goldman , Exxon and Microsoft ahead of it , Mr Jobs made a bold may be borderline arrogance style - no cash for shareholders now when asked bout buy back or dividends!

Every one of these are enviable and proud at the same time.

Looking at the past - historic behaviors of companies and leaders - one thing that is evident is - these are symptoms of hitting the top and Apple might have reached similar stage in its flashy and admirable life.

Not for its innovation and potential to growth - but for maintaining a ring around its head!

Symptoms of what could go against the grain:

Smart Phone and iPhone is still a growing segment - however a very very small portion of the mobile market. iPhone and American consumers are enjoying the benefits of Apple's innovation at the expense of ATT. The cost of using iPhone is 3 - 4 times more than an average mobile user and ever 10 times compared to a global mobile user. Sooner or later that will be normalised and the subsidy will vanish compressing the sky high margins for Apple.

iPad - headed in the same direction with adding expensive mobile access for an Internet access - which has a very limited user base as most of the user base will be existing Apple users - and it will add a huge burden to their already burgeoning iPhone bills- without the equipment subsidy - beyond the initial fancy demand coming from Mac-heads that are proud have white cords dangling from their neck while walking - it should find a place next to iTV! Unless ofcourse Apple finds another carrier to subsidize the device and hide the access under a different category - which it can and could extend its capability to make money!

iMusic - looking at the lack of innovation and new category or a meg star - the initial conversion of analogue to digital music market will reach a stable and mature state faster than the initial Numbers suggest bringing a thud to the growth.

Some of the leader's arrogant move from Mr Jobs and Apple in the last few quarter's also suggest that Apple might be fumbling into its origin - making the same mistakes which made Apple 1.0 not so successful and lost a decade before Jobs 2.0 and Apple 2.0 bulldozed the innovation machine beyond Imagination into reality and success.

Some mistakes which could turn out costly for Apple are -

1. Telling consumers what they NEED vs offering what they WANT

2. Relying more on third party subsidy for margins and growth

3. Bullying industries and shareholders alike.

Some symptoms and actions are:

Blatantly keeping Adobe and their products out of their popular offerings and making arrogant statements about them.

Forcing its leadership mach to bump the eBooks pricing by over 40% forcing a price increase to a rapidly growing eReadership

Forcing proprietary technology on third party developers at the same time marginalizing the software margins and taking the pricing power from the developers

Looking at the current capitalization - it appears quite reasonable at 3x Sales and even more attractive PE ratio compared to its growth rate. However f we remove the subsidy premium built into the revenue and profit - it looks alarmingly high and shocking.

It is obviously a mistake to count Mr Jobs and Apple out of anything and betting against them - however given where the company is and how far it can go - if they do not make changes to it business practices apple 3.0 might have to wait for Apple 4.0!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Super Monday - From Policies to Politics!

After over two years of week-end huddles, during the Financial Whatever, trying to be ready for a surprise Monday for both bail outs and policy changes - From Wall Street to Washington is preparing for a Very Partisan and dramatic shift in American History.

The Financial Reforms and the Health Care Bills - Two major overhaul of how Americans conduct their business life and personal life is headed for the finish line.

If done right this could pave the way for the next Economic leadership for American Corporation!

Leaving Politicians and Policy makers to Washington and letting Main Street to Wall Street to focus on building innovation and products!

With so much riding on these two Policy shifts coming from Washington - the market might have a hard time to digest if the policies themselves are not presented gently and non-intrusively.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

What can California learn from eBay?

California is facing a huge fiscal problem which the Terminator is struggling to cope with.

Not the same as Silver screen - Mr Schwartzenegger would say!

Unlike the last go around this time the election in California is flooded with Silicon Valley money. Campaigns tat are flooded with innovation and technology. The ones that stands out the most is the chase for the Republican nomination for the Governor post!

Ms Whitman - claims her eBay experience and her contribution to eBay and Technology will help in rebuilding debt ridden California!

TVs in California are flooded with her campaign messages with eBay all over it! And not to mention the money going after the negative campaigns!

But , But Ms Whitman like lot of Internet innovation rode the wave- Granted we need to give Madam Whitman for steering eBay after it got off to the races- for the most part it was on cruise control with no significant competition or economic problems!

However before she bailed out of eBay - Ms Whitman did not leave eBay in an envious position- Revenue was slumping , profits eroding & the user community was revolting at Ms Whitman's move to make the company grow from a saturated revenue base!

And ofcours ended up wasting a ton of money on a loser - SKYPE - that too after paying Billions of dollars - for a close to zero revenue generator eBay and Ms Whitman till gave total control to the Skype owners/founders- which after Ms Whitman bailed out of eBay - the people who inherited eBay Management had to do an expensive cleanup!

Ms Whitman does not have the experience to turn around and clean up messy organisations - however she has record to prove that she can leave behind a California State of fiscal and business chaos behind and eBay is a warm example of that.

Republicans have already made a major mistake in the Democratic state by allowing a liberal Ms Schwartzenegger steal a Republican seat...it will be difficult to win the election if they endorse Ms Whitman - whose experience is hard to convince the public that she wont repeat a eBay - And California cannot afford an eBay!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Cisco and its Product announcement Fiasco!

Cisco is no Apple! And Chambers is far from doing a Jobs to the market!

Cisco announcing another version of their product - whose Previous version has an installed base of 5000 and 300 customers in a $2 Billion market - with such a hype - changing the way we know Internet and all these BS- is a real shame!

Please save the Apple envy till you change the market!

Yes Cisco is a great company with a great market share and a lot of cash ...but it is a real shame to see Mr Chambers and Cisco do a number like the one today!

Hope they will let their technology speak and leave the fan fare to Mr Jobs and Apple!

Greasy Olympian chief & Ms Merkel divert attention!

The Finance Minister and Prime Minister from Greece wind down their road trip in White House- Mr Papandreou the theme seems to be dual in nature.

Even as the Prime Minister blame the Wall Street speculators for the Greek problem and calls for White House to join Him in fighting the evil force- the Finance Minister lends an Olive Branch to Wall Street by supporting Goldman Sachs.

Ms Merkel for her part - keeps diverting the attention to Speculators and keeps pounding the table for International Unity to fight the "Speculators"...

Yes there is need for tighter controls on how these derivatives are used to manage and manipulate global finance- it is hardly the reason for the problem faced by Greece and the rest of Europe.

While Germany benefit from the European Union and Ms Merkel would like to enjoy the benefits at the expense of the weaker economies - The Germans would obviously like to reduce there exposure and investment to continue the benefits of the EU! And obviously any distraction in way of blaming the speculators for the problem faced due to the structural inadequacies of Euro and its lopsided benefits derived by Germany and may be a couple of stronger economies- would extend the life of this flawed relationship and Euro for a bit longer and will continue to attract speculators and investors alike to enjoy managing/manipulating the sentiments to reap rewards for a foreseeable future!

Pulling it from the Greece's Mouth...!

Kudos to MS Erin Burnett and CNBC - they asked the most important question tht cn be aasked which will put to rest the cloud hanging over Goldman Sachs and Wall Street practices.

Greece's Finance Minister clearly stated that blaming Goldman for a transaction that was blamed for the current Greece Financial Problem will be stretching and that the transaction in question was done under the laws that was present at that time.

From Ms Merkel to Mr Volcker have been vocal in blaming everything from Euro problem to Greece's financial disaster on Goldman Sachs and their rule book in the derivatives market.

Whether this will remove all European problem - thats another question - however this should be a good beginning to start looking ahead for a better Goldma Sachs performance.

Toyota's Ghost in the machine!

Just when we thought the PR team had this under control...The Ghost s BACK!

With the latest run away Prius on the Freeway hitting the airwaves it appear it will be a while before Toyota can put this episode behind unless they come out clean and does something dramatic in how they handle the problem and address the fixes....Lets Hope for the sake of consumers and shareholders alike that Toyota will redefine the way Japanese companies address consumer concerns and may be change the Management style to become a true global enterprise and redefine Japan 2.0 for the real world!

Cisco Kid stealing An Apple Moment!

Cisco has become synonymous with Internet!

Cisco has become the defacto standard for setting standards in empowering employees!

Cisco has refined compensation practies of Technology ompanies for ever!

Cisco after having done these and more has always been a top dog in Silicon Valley for the time it has been around- the last couple of decades!!

Having lost its Mojo to the likes of Apple & Google is looking at Facebook and Twitter and the likes to push it even further down the pecking order in Silicon Valley and the mind share of the buyers mind!

From iPads to Cellphones to home appliances and consumer electronics - they use and abuse the gears of Cisco - Yet they seldom get mentioned these days!

So - Mr Chambers with his Apple moment today s redidining the Internet with the hope of regaining the mindshare of wallstreet and buyers alike!

With a sudden increase in its acquisitions in the alst couple of years - and with no competition in sight - this could be a turning moment for Cisco customers and shareholders alike!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The OLD Apple is showing colors AGAIN!

After a decade of innovation and execution revoving around conusmers and customers the successfull Apple is slowly showing its old self which outsmarted rivals in techological break throughs and ideas but failed to excite beyond a handful of elites!

Usability and slickness centered around Apple innovations.

Offering what customers could associate with on a day to day basis.

A Sony with elegance

A Microsoft with reliability

An Intel with Pinache

A Ferrari with affordability

Consumers and critics have almost forgotten how Apple was in its original form, the first decade- Offering what customers SHOULD USE and not what Customers Wanted!

The second coming of Mr Jobs and Apple saw a wise team centering innovation and technology around customers- breath taking ease and elegance and made them fall in love with the half bitten apple! Feeling prowd to have that White cord dangle in an otherwise sober personalities!

But looking more and more at the new products and innovations - iBook and iPad, it looks like Apple might be slowly turning and might be ready to show its old self -

With iBook - Strong armed in pushing for a HIGER prices n the eBooks a near 40% jump to consumers....could have a backlash! Is Apple forgeting waht made iTunes popular? Not the service but the pricing!

With iPad - Bulldozing on an industry so used to Adobe platforms on most of the Web developments and making blackholes popup in Apple mobile devices? Might be good for Apple Technology but not for consumers!

Apple in its Second Life has shown effectiveness in learning from customer messages and changing quickly - unlike the Newton days Apple...

Are these Old Apple Strategies here to stay?

Are consumers , beyond the White cord Danglers , willing to be bull dozed again?

Given History and Time - The answers is NO!

Hope Apple learns and listens to their customers!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Financial Reforms and V@#k-er Rule!

Financial Reforms under the Obama Watch and may be the last major initiative by a Washington Powerhouse - Senator Dodd appears close to being inked with bipartisan support!

It seems to address all the polished and sophisticated items that we have been hearing a lot during the last two odd years-

- Transparency

- Consumer Protection Agency

- Too Big to Fail

Interestingly a newcomer to this club "the V@#k-er Rule" has been conspicuously missing - which bodes well for the Financial Institutes & Wall Street. Contrary to popular opinion , in the yin-yang of capitalism , it is the Fixed Income players who play God and play havoc to the free market , dictating what policy makers and common man alike should and should not do n not Mr Blan-kenstein and their Wall Street Buddies.

If the final version passes in its current form Goldman Sachs and the likes will benefit tremendously which will help in putting the economy back on its track.

If this passes it will also support the Obama Quickstop program even though the Whitehouse power politicians talk otherwise and appear beating up Wallstreet

The New Washington & Playing the Market Sentiment!

From Greenspan Put to Bernanke Floor we have come to manage the market to directly & indirectly support the expectations.

Now under the Obama Administration we are seeing a new & agressive Expectation Management.

The latest Snowstorm and the Obama Quickstop Plan agressively propogated that the now effect will be pretty damaging to the unemployment report.

Well ahead of the real report the market has been set on track to expect a pretty bad number-

Good Strategy & it worked very well!

Is Obama Quickstop the New Greenspan Put or the Bernanke Put? If it is then the Market will be bouyant & we can see a nice boost in the near term till the economy cn stand on its own!

High Noon Summer Perpetual Spring / Fall New Normal ..3-5 years!

IMF & Germany

Confidence in teh numbers - PIMCO & others

Thursday, March 4, 2010

As the pandits would say....lights are on in the Citi!

A very Articulate , confident and convincing at the Hill!

Citi under Mr Pandit has been taking the beeting from reporters and analysts alike through out this Financial Whatever!

Heavy hitters in the Investment communities have started warming up to the emerging Citi and its global brand and how Mr Pandit could possibly make it a multi-bagger for the once in a life time opportunity through its common!

And today listening to Mr Pandit's testimony it is very clear the tide is changing and it is ready to emerge as a Global Banking Force once again.

Weakening Japanese Yen in cards?

The case for a Weakening Yen -

Japan becoming a less attractive destination compared to China and India

Japanese companies lagging behind in Innovation in the Internet age losing their strongholds to companies like Apple

The Toyota Recall seems to put more than a quality dent in the Automaker - it is slowly raising questions about the Japanese style of Management and customer care

Not to mention the Aging Japanese population which is forced to rely more and more for the export market

And ofcourse low rates and near zero rate financing is not just a Japan syndrome.

With Toyota not fading to the background might force not just Toyota but the Japanese government to do something more dramatic to keep customers flocking to the Japan Brand.

As one of the step Yen Will be forced to weaken significantly from its current levels.

"Pay for Procedure!"

Healthcare mess and a stalemate in Washington!

Lobbyists arming the senators and congressman alike with ammunition to fight for their corporate loyalists!

Everyone sensitive to be frank & open on addressing the real problem - As the House speaker said


Affordability &


This needs to apply to every participant in the system includent the beneficiary-ala consumer!

What we havent adressed is the OPEN market competition which compress the pay packages & the premiums for healthcare alike.

For the first time we are hearing politicians & policimakers , who have distanced themselves in addressing the underlying root caue for the cost runup , are finally braving themselves- the catch phrase - "Pay for proedure" needs to be changed!

Now this is just the beginning and might take a whole lot mre to make healthcare affordable & accessible - not to mention accountable!
Slowing to Smell....!

After going through several blogs I came to the conclusion that it is very difficult to write about your day to day life!

Fascinating to see how creative people are and how so many people around the world are able to choose a variety of topic and pour their heart out and paint something so wonderful- full of life and color!

Need Humor! Need Depth and more than anything need perspective! I found it is easy to write about something substantial in which a person is well versed in. It made me think - I went around the last few days looking around and paying attention to everything from nature to relationships!

Now curiosity started posing a question - what is more important to writing? Chosing a topic or having the patience to research and articulate about the impressions that every day events brings to a person?

I thought I will try this every day! For 30 Days!

Impulsive and spontaneous

No research - just type as the feelings flow and as the words can portray! Thanks to the Blackberry - now I can try doing that the moment the urge happens without waiting!

As I was deciding on this I found myself in a shop - decided to pull my Blackberry and type what I saw around me...so begins my first piece.

PS. Since Blog has major restricitons on how many posting and what kind of flexibility one can have using the standard template I will try to find a work around using a couple of gadgets to display a couple of days posting at any given time till I figure out a way to display the history!

To avoid dilution of this site I have moved the experiment to another blog under


The following is a sample on content with no photos- the Daily Life Signs posting will be more of a pictorial experience!

Walking around a woman's shop!

Looking at the colors in a woman's shop is like peeking into a kaleidoscope. However, one doesn't have to change to feel the vibrant mood.

Amazing styles and fascinating fashion! Trying to coordinate gives the several option that is needed to meet the day to day lifestyles of varying moods and differing ages.

Age appropriate colors! Shades for fading moods!

Bold red!

Sober red!

Flashy red!

Bland red!

Blood Red!

Romantic Red!

Decisions! Decisions! and Decisions!

Deciding the color at the time of shopping gives the option to choose and refine to the various rainbow moods that a person possibly can go through in a fast paced connected world!

Sizes and fits to match every form and need.

Having a choice helps in refinement!

And helps!

In Decisions! Decisions and Decisions!

Startup Wisdom!

May be there is a reason they want a Money Man to run the venture- but the following tip will save a buck or two! This will list a couple of grey hairs to keep!

  • Success is contageous- start it immediately!
  • Share the Vision but not Leadership!
  • Smart money is great - but Lucky Money is even better. Get some!
  • Being passionate is essential - but only after motivation to make money.
  • Establish the TRUE Pecking Order!
  • Let Sales be part of your core strategy- everything else can be bought!
  • If you havent done Selling START DOING IT NOW!

Building your 2nd Million!

Skip the first million and go straight to the second- as the first one is the most difficult one to bring home! The second one can be as tough as the first one but is never tougher than the first one! You can make money - working - investing in stocks/etc - real-estate - starting a business - others Choose your area of interest first as this will help you identify the opportunity and make you easily motivated to work on the 2nd million!

Not in any particular Order!

  • First lets know the facts: 1) Your work life is 40 something years (even at conservative estimate) so lets make sure we plan that Properly
  • 2) Lets identify opportunity to make money with out too much effort- living for Today is Good but lets not lose today's free money in the process like - benefits, tax breaks, sale,coupons,etc
  • 3) Lets not try to make ALL THE MONEY in the same way! Lets break the objective into smaller chunks and assign different ways to make them individually
  • 4) Put the 1st Million in Auto-pilot and set a 10 Years plus Time table
  • Convince yourself that you need the Money
  • Set a time line to achieve the goal.

Relationships - Learning to enjoy them!

Do we retain relationships? Expectations out of frienships vary from society to society & age group to age group. How long do we carry them? Some of them bring fond memories- and some not so pleasant! Here you can expect to see nuggets from my experiences and analysis!

Family & Friends: We spend less time with family than with friends- yet we feel more comfortable with family than friends- Why? Is it because we dont have expectations with family members but we have some on friends?

Allowing the other person to finish their train of thought builds a very long lasting relationship - as it makes you understand the other persons point of view fully & also to respond being aware making even an opposing point of view reasonable.

  • Cherry Pick your arguments - Left or Right Brained!
  • Make every encounter a transaction - this will make leaving baggages behind easy!
  • Qualify the type of relationship - however strange it might be
  • Chasing friendship is not always helpful as it leads to compromise.
  • Family circles - define it and accept it whether you like it or not!
  • Its ok to do different activities with different people!
Prof Dr Peik A Monie's Corner

  • if being number two is not enough go to a lower market
  • .
  • proceeds from a street dog dont bark
  • .
  • shooting the papparazi dont break cameras

DIGITAL IRIS - An inexcusable view of the photograpic world!

Let me see if I can add a few lines every week highlighting my 2 cents on photography- my experiences and desires

Things that make good photos -

- excellent and expensive set of lenses; in this digital era spend less on the body and keep investing in the high end lenses as the lenses will not lose value and the body is still under construction!

- accessories and the right tripod; never underestimate your advantage with a tripod

- plan & choose the subject and the location

- know your subject well!

- look and follow the calendars; simple things like a night with a Full moon- we dont realise that it does not happen every day - if you narrow it to the summer when the sky is still blue - I guess it becomes a couple of times a year- and if you factor n the location and your availability at that location and time...so Knowing the calendar and season helps for a good but not so common picture

- Take some luck with you!

  • Print and Enlarge Some Too
  • Delete Bad Pictures from Storage
  • Isolate Subject's color
  • Assess various profile
  • Add a subject to the frame
  • Take Nature after rain - they look better
  • Transparent Objects like flowers have creative effect with light behind them
  • If you want to enjoy the trip - leave the camera behind!
  • Define the subject for the shoot out trip
  • Take a survey trip before the real shoot out
  • Learn & Buy the Best Tripod
  • Always take a handy utility camera
  • Use Multiple exposure & shots in action oriented moments- this will help you pick the ideal snap - as even a fraction of a second makes a HUGE difference in photos.
  • Know your camers settings!
  • Understand Shutter Lag
  • Understand the camera shakes

AfterMarket Pulse- The boring Services Industry!

Keeping it inefficient is good for every one- A success story and why it will be restricted to a handful in the services Industry- A serious look at the Service Industry and my views on improving them. As a society we have accepted that everything breaks down and needs periodic maintenance. We are willing to pay both money and time to accomodate such services. What we have not done is define what is the service level that is needed for every such incident. From household appliances to industrial equipments we are forced to accept the cost and quality that the market offers. In such a sellers market room for mediocracy is enormous- giving way for opportunities. Yes predicatability is not always easy when it comes to failure or repair - or for that matter to identify what is wrong once the item is broke as it is not always possible to run the equipment ot see what is going wrong! And there are companies that can afford stupidity & those that cannot- if you want to change choose wisely!

  • Three steps: 1) Localize Failure 2) Response to Events 3) Time to Life
  • Inter-dependency at a higer level accelerates return
  • Resposiveness is rewarding - even if it is just to show on site of event!
  • Failure Prevention is difficult - yet possible
  • Know your Industry problems: Inventory, Turn time, Forecasting Failure, Estimating Cost, Finding Talent, Automation tools
  • Know your industry Practices- Swapping parts, using refurbished items, penalty
  • Define Quality of service
  • Attract talent - as service industry does not attract fresh talents
  • Innovote service packages

About Me

Seen me go through cycles driven by Age, Money, Deception, Affection, Success, Failure, Fear- etc. The current cycle puts me in a middle aged bucket with sculpted bitterness trying to tame it to embrace the sweet crime of success and affection.