Thursday, November 20, 2008

Some perspective on the credit markets

Most of us spend nearly all of our time following the stock market(s), and barely (if ever) give a thought to the credit markets. Well, I used to work for a buy-side fixed income shop, so I learned the credit markets and intend to keep following them, as I think they can tell you a lot and round out your analysis.

So what's the state of the credit markets?

I talked to a buddy from my old shop today, he told me that early in the morning that one of the CMBX (an index of Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities (CMBS)) was down 140 basis points. Now, that doesn't seem like a lot, right?

Until you realize that until about 18 montsh ago, 20bp of movement IN A YEAR was considered pretty much normal. So, in an hour or two of trading, the index moved by 7x the normal amount seen in a year.

Wild times, folks...

Friday, November 14, 2008

Apologies (again) for the delay

I apologize again for having no new content this week. The process of transitioning jobs has been a bit more hectic than I'd forecast.

But, I intend to be back soon (early next week, I hope) with more commentary.

Thanks again.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Sorry for the delay, folks

Sorry that there hasn't been another piece on here since Thursday (and likely won't be another one until at least Wednesday).

Been busy navigating the final days at the current job, figuring out my coverage space for the new job, and so on.

And what with these markets leaving us all energized and enthusiastic!!!

But don't worry, will be back soon with more commentary.


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Manitowoc Flies South For The Winter (MTW, CAT, ITW)

Banking Stress Spreads To India's ICICI (IBN, HBC, HDB)

Hospital Spending Fears Expose SonoSite (SONO, ISRG, VAR)

You Can Beat KD (KFT, K, GIS) (???)

Here's my latest piece on Kraft, for Investopedia.

Folks, I have no idea whatsoever what's up with that title. I submitted the piece with a title along the lines of "Kraftwerk", but it got changed -- which is a normal part of the process. I originally was going to go with Crafty Kraft Crafts ... and then decided to change my medication.

I've asked my editor what the heck that title is supposed to mean. I'll let you know if/when I get an answer...


Compass Minerals Still On Course (CMP, ROH)

Monday, November 3, 2008

Get Out and VOTE!!!

This is my semi-obligatory public service announcement.

Whomever you support, and for whatever reason(s), get out tomorrow and make your choice.

If you believe, as I do that "the universe is run by the complex interweaving of three elements: energy, matter, and enlightened self-interest," then express that self-interest.

That is all. I now return you to your regularly scheduled reading.