Speculation that bitcoin will become a widely-used global currency seems to be a better bet now than ever before.
Nassim Taleb, famous for writing “The Black Swan,” and equally for his mathematical work in trading, was once a Bitcoiner. Recently, he has sold his bitcoin, explaining that it is not today what it should be as far as a stable, usable asset. I agree with him.
To date, bitcoin has not fulfilled its potential as a currency being used far and wide around the world. …
By Steven McClurg and Leah Wald
“We are stuck with technology when what we really want is just stuff that works.” - Douglas Adams (author of the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy)
Ethereum was cutting edge when the network went live on July 30, 2015. It reminds me of the Palm Pilot Treo. For those who don’t remember, or are too young to know, for the first time ever, you were able to plug in a device to your computer to download emails, go away to answer those emails, and when you came back to plug your Palm Pilot back…
By Steven McClurg
The current recessionary environment is precipitated by two events. The first is easy monetary policy creating zombie companies and unsustainable corporate debt. The second is a lockdown resulting from a reaction to a new and novel virus termed “COVID-19”, a scarier sounding word than the original “Corona Virus” previously used. In order to save the US markets from an economic death spiral and out of control unemployment, the Fed changed course from slowly increasing rates to quickly lowering rates to near-zero while purchasing more balance sheet assets than any time in history. We will call this “Easier…
When the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC:US) began trading, many investors made great paper profits from the premium that it carried in the early years. This knowledge enticed the same accredited and institutional investors, as well as others eagerly sitting on the sidelines, to jump into the Grayscale Ethereum Trust (ETHE:US). However, it is not the same because the fundamentals of Bitcoin and Ethereum are not the same. There is no one size fits all investment strategy that encompasses all cryptocurrencies.
Closed-End Funds and Premiums
Many investors do not understand the mechanics and nuances of closed-end mutual funds and trusts. This…
The inordinate thirst of gain that had afflicted all ranks of society was not to be slaked even in the South Sea. Other schemes, of the most extravagant kind, were started. The share-lists were speedily filled up, and an enormous traffic carried on in shares, while, of course, every means were resorted to to raise them to an artificial value in the market. — Charles Mackay, 1841
Charles Mackay, a 19th-century Scottish poet, journalist, and author, wrote about three of the most famous financial bubbles in history: the Mississippi Scheme, the South-Sea Bubble, and Tulipomania in his pinnacle book, Extraordinary…
By Steven McClurg
Why are stocks rising amidst riots and COVID-19?
Because people aren’t spending.
John Maynard Keynes laid out in The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money a simple equation that sums up the current situation:
Income = value of output = consumption + investment.
Saving = income — consumption.
Therefore, saving = investment.
During the COVID-19 lockdown, spending was thwarted by store closures and a lack of avenues to consume. Places where people could consume, usually had long lines, further discouraging those who ventured out; if the fear of becoming deathly ill did not discourage you from…
By Steven McClurg
After the Great Recession of 2008, negative interest rates emerged in The Euro Area, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, and Japan.
Given our uncertain economic climate and a renewed push by President Donald Trump, we foresee negative interest rates coming to the US.
US 10-year Treasuries sit at a yield of 65 bps, which means if you buy the bonds today and hold them for 10 years, you earn a whopping 0.65% a year if you hold to maturity. One of the mandates of the Federal Reserve is to maintain inflation at a steady 2% rate, so if…
“Lesson number one: Don’t underestimate the other guy’s greed.” -Scarface
We are not buying Bitcoin into the halving.
Bitcoin has rallied to over $10,000 from around $6,000 just a month ago, adding more than $1.4 billion in value. As of the release of this piece, Bitcoin is $8586. Bloomberg, CNBC, along with top technical analysts are covering the price action and attributing the surge to the upcoming halving and excitedly pulling up countdown clocks on their shows. The media is rampant with bull-run hype and moon shooting price targets.
Hope is good for mankind but hope is not an investment…
By Steven McClurg
There is hope and an expectation that lives will return to normal after the quarantines loosen and “non-essential” businesses are allowed to open in the US and globally. Market participants believe that a $2 trillion dollar aid package is enough to float small and large businesses, as well as the 20%+ who are now unemployed — not to mention freelancers who do not qualify for unemployment and many who are underemployed. In fact, the markets continue to rally on hope and news that the COVID-19 curve is flattening and a vaccine is close.
Hope is good for…
By Steven McClurg, Leah Wald, and Neil Harounian
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) act included a $349 billion loan program called the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) as a lifeline for small businesses desperate for cash during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown. We believe that a payroll tax holiday is a better solution to ensure that Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) receive the economic support that they need.