In the event that the Mayans got it wrong, and the world does not end today, I am calling it quits for the year. And what a year it has been. Over 26 trips and 40 speaking engagements in 20 countries, I managed to log 75,000 flight miles, a distance of roughly three times around the world. Some 250,000 frequent flier miles were posted to my various accounts. Whenever I board Virgin Airlines, the crew lines up at attention and snaps off a brisk salute. Needless to say, first class, for me, is the Land of Milk and Honey.
The research I gathered was enough for me to publish 260 daily letters totaling 350,000 words. That is about half the length of Tolstoy’s War and Peace. I also managed to pump out over 230 trade alerts with a success ratio of 69%. According to the email traffic, many of you did extremely well. If you are into triple digits, please send me an email. I would love to get a testimonial from you. And this was a year that many professionals describe as the most difficult of their careers.
You know that when they are advertising power tools and Pajamagrams on CNBC, it is time to get out of Dodge. This morning I will be driving through on icy roads to get to my lakefront mansion at Incline Village, Nevada to take in the sparkling waters of Lake Tahoe. There, I will consume a suitcase full of research and, after much cogitation and contemplation, write my 2013 Annual Asset Review, which I will publish on Monday, January 7, 2013.
I will also be rethinking my business model, so if any of you have suggestions on how I can improve this service, send me an email at email@example.com. Just put “suggestions” in the subject line. Please forgive me in advance if I take a few hours catching some ”big air” off of Squaw Valley’s treacherous double X black runs.
The following week will find me in Chicago for my annual New Year’s meetings with leading hedge fund managers, which is always packed to capacity. I will probably pick up a pastrami at Manny’s Deli and a deep dish Pizza at Uno’s. New Year’s morning will find me with the Polar Bears, taking my annual dip into Lake Michigan, that is, if we can break through the ice.
To get home, I have booked a first class cabin on the California Zephyr, a 54 hour Amtrak ride back to San Francisco that will carry me over the snow covered Rocky Mountains and the High Sierras. Before I leave, I will stock up with a big bag of Garret’s candied popcorn. The morning of January 6 should find me clickety clacking my way across the northern Nevada desert.
During my absence I will be posting some of my favorite pieces from the last year. I have thousands of new subscribers who will be reading these for the first time, and many legacy readers may have missed them the first time around, or forgotten the data. I hope you find them as another useful step towards your education on the global financial markets. Charts and data have been updated to make them relevant.
Finally, I want to thank you all for an incredible year. I rode the Orient express from London to Venice. I lived in the lap of luxury at the Hotel Cipriani in Venice and at Raffles in Singapore. I cocooned for a week in the owner’s suite of the incredible Queen Mary II. I had the opportunity to meet heads of state, CEO’s, top money managers, our nation’s military leaders, and even a Maori chieftain. I had the pleasure of flying the length of the Grand Canyon at low altitude, weaving my way along the Colorado River.
I really did get to rub shoulders with the high and mighty who run the world and harvest their pearls of wisdom, which I passed on to you. I logged 200 hours as a pilot flying to such diverse locations as Molycorp’s (MCP) Mountain Pass mine, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, and Honda’s loading docks in San Francisco. I never minded the horrendous jet lag, the well-deserved hangovers, or the traffic jams in China. Your subscriptions to my products and your support of my research made it all possible.
I always tell people that I am not in this for the money, and it’s true. Not a day goes by when I don’t receive an email from a grateful reader who claims that I have paid off their mortgage, a kid’s college education, a parent’s uninsured operation, or a child’s chemotherapy. They tell me that I am teaching them to fish; thus, sparing them from the frozen tasteless kind they sell at Safeway, which they must wait in line for to pay inflated prices. You can’t buy that kind of appreciation, not with all the money in the world.
It certainly beats the hell out of spending my retirement scoring a 98 on the local golf course. And I’ll never beat Tiger Woods, no matter how many blonds I date.
Taking on a Major Long Position