More Pain to Come in Oil

The Prize

There are very few people I will drop everything to listen to. One of the handful is Daniel Yergin, the bookish founder and CEO of Cambridge Energy Research Associates, the must-go-to source for all things energy. Daniel received a Pulitzer Prize for The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money, and Power, a rare feat for a non-fiction book (I’ve never been able to get … [Read more...]

The Service Job in Your Future

McDonalds Employee

Anyone wondering about the long term future of the US economy should take a look at the chart below. It shows the unrelenting growth of services’ share of American GDP growing from 25% to 45% over the last sixty years. Far and away the fastest growth area has been in health care and with the first Obamacare now underway, that growth is set to accelerate hugely. Financial … [Read more...]

January 26, 2015

Global Market CommentsJanuary 26, 2015Fiat Lux SPECIAL RAILROAD ISSUE Featured Trade:(WILL THE OIL BUST KILL THE RAILROADS?),(UNP), (CSX), (NSC), (CP), (ACI),(TESTIMONIAL) Union Pacific Corporation (UNP)CSX Corp. (CSX)Norfolk Southern Corporation (NSC)Canadian Pacific Railway Limited (CP)Arch Coal Inc. (ACI) … [Read more...]

Will the Oil Bust Kill the Railroads?


No, not really. I was fascinated by the recent comments made by Union Pacific (UNP) CEO, Jack Koraleski, about the current robust health of his company. Fourth quarter profits rocketed by an amazing 22% and those stellar numbers look set to continue. I love railroads, not because they used to belch smoke and steam and have these incredibly loud, romantic, wailing whistles. … [Read more...]


John Thomas

Greetings from the great white north. I am a BIG fan of yours and have rejoined your Trade Alert Service for another year. You have friends around the world you have yet to meet. Enclosed is a token of my appreciation. Thanks a 100 trillion! Bob Vancouver, Canada … [Read more...]

January 26, 2015 – Quote of the Day


“China has been doing everything right for the last ten years. Our government is made up of 'C' students that were political science majors, whereas, the Chinese government is made up of PhD's that were educated at Cambridge and Harvard,' said one Washington observer. … [Read more...]

January 23, 2015

Global Market Comments January 23, 2015 Fiat Lux Featured Trade: (STOCKS TO BUY AT THE BOTTOM), (CRASH TESTING THE TESLA), (TSLA) Tesla Motors, Inc. (TSLA) … [Read more...]

12 Stocks to Buy at the Bottom

Jim Parker

My friend and esteemed colleague, Mad Day Trader Jim Parker, spent the weekend perusing hundreds of long term charts. He was assembling a short list of attractive names to buy after the next major sell off. I am not talking about a modest 4% decline. Even a textbook 10% won’t get his attention. I’m talking about the kind of gut churning, rip your face off, time to change the … [Read more...]

Crash Testing the Tesla

Tesla  Damage

The Tesla Model S1 (TSLA) has been rated by Consumer Reports magazine as the best car ever built, grabbing a covered 99 score out of 100. It has been ranked by the US government Department of Transportation as the safest car ever built. Even competitors love the car. So I decided to see if these vaunted claims were true and crash test my own $110,000 high performance Model S1 … [Read more...]

January 22, 2015

Global Market CommentsJanuary 22, 2015Fiat Lux SPECIAL GOLD ISSUE Featured Trade:(IS THE BULL MARKET IN GOLD BACK?),(GLD), (GDX), (SIL), (ABX), (REMX), (SLV),(ANOTHER NAIL IN THE NUCLEAR COFFIN),(NLR), (CCJ) SPDR Gold Shares (GLD)Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX)Global X Silver Miners ETF (SIL)Barrick Gold Corporation (ABX)Market Vectors Rare EarthStrat Mtls ETF … [Read more...]

Is the Bull Market in Gold Back?

John Thomas -Gold

After a prolonged, four year hibernation, it appears that the gold bulls are at long last back. Long considered nut cases, crackpots and the wearers of tin hats, lovers of the barbarous relic have just enjoyed the first decent trading month in a very long time. The question for the rest of us is whether there is something real and sustainable going on here, or whether the … [Read more...]

Another Nail in the Nuclear Coffin

Nuclear Power Plant

Southern California Edison (SCE/PF) has announced that it is permanently shuttering its controversial nuclear power plant at San Onofre, California. The move is only the latest in a series of closures implemented by utilities around the country, and could well spell the end of this flagging industry. This is further dismal news for holders of ETF’s in the sector, like the … [Read more...]

January 22, 2015 – Quote of the Day

Financials Knife in Hand

“The stupid market cliché about catching a falling knife is actually happening now. This is a falling knife. You have to look at the market as a hot air balloon. You only want to grab it as it is going up. I don’t think dollar cost averaging is the plan here,” said Bob Iaccino at … [Read more...]

January 21, 2015

Global Market CommentsJanuary 21, 2015Fiat Lux Featured Trade:(JANUARY 21 GLOBAL STRATEGY WEBINAR),(THE TECHNICAL/FUNDAMENTAL TUG OF WAR: WHO WILL WIN?)(MAKE YOUR NEXT KILLING IN AFRICA),(AFK), (GAF) Market Vectors Africa ETF (AFK)SPDR S&P Emerging Middle East&Afr ETF (GAF) … [Read more...]

The Technical/Fundamental Tug of War: Who Will Win?

Cromagnon Man

At my many Mad Hedge Fund Trader Global Strategy Luncheons, speaking engagements and conferences which I attend around the world, I never fail to get asked the same question by beginning traders. “Which is more useful, fundamental or technical analysis?” That question has earned a heightened urgency over the past few weeks, when I have had two diametrically opposed groups of … [Read more...]

Make Your Next Killing in Africa


Feel like investing in a state sponsor of terrorism? How about a country whose leaders have stolen $400 billion in the last decade and has seen 300 foreign workers kidnapped? Another country lost four wars in the last 40 years. Still interested? How about a country that suffers the world’s highest AIDS rate, regularly endures insurrections where all of the Westerners are … [Read more...]

January 20, 2015

Global Market CommentsJanuary 20, 2015Fiat Lux Featured Trade:(THE YEAR OF THE BLACK SWAN),(FXF), (FXE), (EUO)(THE PRICE OF STARDOM AT DAVOS),(WILL GOLD COINS SUFFER THE FATE OF THE $10,000 BILL), (GLD),(SIGN UP NOW FOR TEXT MESSAGING OF TRADE ALERTS) CurrencyShares Swiss Franc ETF (FXF)CurrencyShares Euro ETF (FXE)ProShares UltraShort Euro (EUO)SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) … [Read more...]

The Year of the Black Swan

John Thoms - Black Swans

I’ve just spent the entire morning on the phone, and it’s clear that thousands of individuals, hedge funds and brokers have just been wiped out as a result of The Swiss National Bank’s surprise move to remove its cap against the Euro. This is a black swan on steroids. And it hasn’t just been Swiss franc positions that have been bedeviling traders. You can add to the list … [Read more...]

The Price of Stardom at Davos

Davos Emblem

It’s that time of year again, when finance ministers, central bank governors, hedge fund managers, and assorted rock stars hold their annual confab high in the Alps at Davos, Switzerland. When I was a director of one of the largest banks in Switzerland, I found myself a frequent visitor to the Alpine village of Davos. In years gone by, we provided the loans to the Canton of … [Read more...]

Will Gold Coins Suffer the Fate of the $10,000 Bill?


The conspiracy theorists will love this one. Buried deep in the bowels of the 2,000 page health care bill was a new requirement for gold dealers to file Form 1099's for all retail sales by individuals over $600. Specifically, the measure can be found in section 9006 of the Patient Protection and Affordability Act of 2010. For foreign readers unencumbered by such concerns, … [Read more...]

Sign Up Now for Text Messaging of Trade Alerts


Subscribers to Global Trading Dispatch and Mad Hedge Fund Trader PRO are able to receive instantaneous text messages of my proprietary Trade Alerts. This eliminates frustrating delays caused by traffic surges on the Internet itself, and by your local server. To activate your free service, please log in to your account at, look under your name on the … [Read more...]

January 20, 2015 – Quote of the Day


Steve Jobs offered me one third of Apple for $50,000 and I was so smart that I turned it down. It’s funny when you think about it now, except when I’m crying,” said Nolan Bushnell, the founder of game company Atari and Jobs’ first employer. … [Read more...]

January 16, 2015

Global Market CommentsJanuary 16, 2015Fiat Lux Featured Trade:(SWISS SURPRISE RATTLES MARKETS)(FXF), (FXE), (EUO)(FRIDAY, APRIL 3 HONOLULU, ALASKA, WASHINGTON, OREGON, BRITISH COLUMBIA, JAPAN, AND CHINA STRATEGY LUNCHEON) CurrencyShares Swiss Franc ETF (FXF)CurrencyShares Euro ETF (FXE)ProShares UltraShort Euro (EUO) … [Read more...]

Swiss Surprise Rattles Markets

John Thomas - Switzerland

It was one of those moves that appeared so gigantic and so unreal that you had to blink, while checking the cables on the back of your computer and your broadband connection. The Swiss franc has just skyrocketed by 17% against the dollar in one tick. First the bad news: the rent on my summer chalet in Zermatt, Switzerland had just risen by 17%. And the good news? Holders of … [Read more...]

January 15, 2015

Global Market CommentsJanuary 15, 2015Fiat Lux Featured Trade:(2014 TRADE ALERT REVIEW),(FXE), (EUO), (SPY), (AAPL), (GILD), (F), (GM), (TLT), (UNG), (VIX), (VXX) CurrencyShares Euro ETF (FXE)ProShares UltraShort Euro (EUO)SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY)Apple Inc. (AAPL)Gilead Sciences Inc. (GILD)Ford Motor Co. (F)General Motors Company (GM)iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond … [Read more...]

2014 Trade Alert Review

John Thomas - Beach

When is the Mad Hedge Fund Trader a genius, and when is he a complete moron? That is the question readers have to ask themselves whenever their smart phones ping, and a new Trade Alert appears on their screens. I have to confess that I wonder myself sometimes. So I thought I would run my 2014 numbers to find out when I was a hero, and when I was a goat. The good news is … [Read more...]

January 14, 2015

Global Market Comments January 14, 2015 Fiat Lux SPECIAL SHORT SELLING ISSUE Featured Trade: (SHORT SELLING SCHOOL 101), (SH), (SDS), (PSQ), (DOG), (RWM), (SPXU), (AAPL), (VIX), (VXX), (IPO), (MTUM), (SPHB), (HDGE) ProShares Short S&P500 (SH) ProShares UltraShort S&P500 (SDS) ProShares Short QQQ (PSQ) ProShares Short Dow30 (DOG) ProShares Short Russell2000 (RWM) … [Read more...]

Short Selling School 101

Wile E. Coyote - TNT

There is nothing worse than closing the barn door after the horses have bolted. No doubt, you will receive a wealth of short selling and hedging ideas from your other research sources and the media at the next market bottom. That is always how it seems to play out. So I am going to get you out ahead of the curve, putting you through a refresher course on how to best trade … [Read more...]

January 14, 2015 – Quote of the Day

Lawn Smiley Face

“When asked how he manages the time to be chairman of Microsoft, run the world’s largest charity, and raise three kids, Bill Gates answered “I don’t mow the lawn.” … [Read more...]

January 13, 2015

Global Market CommentsJanuary 13, 2015Fiat Lux Featured Trade:(A DAY IN THE LIFE OF THE MAD HEDGE FUND TRADER),(SPY), (SPX), (QQQ), (AAPL), (VIX), (FSLR), (SCTY), (TLT), (TBT), (FXE), (GLD), (GDX), (USO) SPDR S&P 500 (SPY)S&P 500 Index (SPX)PowerShares QQQ (QQQ)Apple Inc. (AAPL)VOLATILITY S&P 500 (^VIX)First Solar, Inc. (FSLR)SolarCity Corporation (SCTY)iShares … [Read more...]

A Day in the Life of the Mad Hedge Fund Trader

John Thomas

Diary Entry for Monday, January 12, 2015 Dear Diary, 4:30 PM Sunday-the day before - Thought I’d check my Bloomberg to see how the Asian markets were opening. Yikes! Oil is down another buck. Looks like it is going to be a “RISK OFF” day. Better fasten my seat belt, put on my hard hat, and get ready for a rough day. No rest for the wicked. At least for the first 15 minutes. … [Read more...]

January 13, 2015 – Quote of the Day


“Over the long term, all of the fiat currencies of the world are involved in a competitive devaluation. The structural stresses in most of the western economies are such that centrals banks will attempt to continue to substitute liquidity for solvency.” said Rick Rule, chairman of Sprott US Holdings, a precious metals specialist. … [Read more...]

January 12, 2015

Global Market CommentsJanuary 12, 2015Fiat Lux Featured Trade:(THROWING IN THE TOWEL ON THE BOND MARKET),(TBT), (TLT), (LQD), (MUB), (ELD),(THE 1% AND THE BOND MARKET),(TLT), (TBT), (MUB), (LQD), (ELD), (JNK) ProShares UltraShort 20+ Year Treasury (TBT)iShares Trust - iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF (TLT)iShares Trust - iShares iBoxx $ Investment Grade Corporate Bond ETF … [Read more...]

Throwing in the Towel on the Bond Market

John Thomas

Here are the long-winded, feeble bunch of excuses I promised you. I have broken every rule in my trading book hanging on to my position in the (TBT) for the past four months. I ignored my own stop losses. I listened to the morons on TV saying interest rates were about to spike up. I took the pile of charts that were telling me there was no bottom in sight, and deliberately … [Read more...]

The 1% and the Bond Market


As a follow up the Mea Culpa above, I thought I’d delve into one of the more mysterious reasons why the bond market keeps going from strength to strength. To a man, hedge fund traders expected bond prices to take a dive this year, and for yields to soar. Isn’t that what’s supposed to happen in recovering economies? Instead, we got the opposite, and yields have plunged, from … [Read more...]

January 9, 2015

Global Market Comments January 9, 2015 Fiat Lux Featured Trade: (A VERY CHICAGO CHRISTMAS), (TESTIMONIAL), (BREAKFAST WITH MOHAMED EL-ERIAN) … [Read more...]

A Very Chicago Christmas

John Thomas - Art Museum

There is nothing more enjoyable than partaking in an all you can eat Christmas buffet lunch with a group of friends. That was how my Chicago Global Strategy Luncheon turned out two weeks ago. Guests came from Detroit, Canada, and remote Illinois. The abundance of roast beef, ham, and turkey on our plates matched the tales of outsized trading returns in 2014. We all had much … [Read more...]


John Thomas - Hiking

Thank you for talking with me on the phone right before Christmas.  I enjoyed our conversation and look forward to meeting you at your Incline Village Global Strategy Luncheon in the spring.  I will also look forward to the hike up to 12,000 ft. after our lunch, (are you sure you want to spot me by carrying a 60 lbs pack?). I usually stop running at 12,000 just saying. LOL.  … [Read more...]

Breakfast with Mohamed El-Erian

Mohamed El-Erian

Passing through Los Angeles for a day, I thought I would take a walk down Nostalgia Lane and have breakfast at the historic Langham Huntington Hotel, the venue for my 1970 senior prom. I was half way through my eggs Benedict in the Terrace Room when, who sits at the next table, but bond giant PIMCO’s brilliant former CEO and co-CIO, Mohamed El-Erian. That’s the last time he … [Read more...]

January 9, 2015 – Quote of the Day


“If You’ve lived long enough on Wall Street, you know that we shoot our wounded and eat our young,” said Brad Hintz, an analyst with Sandford Bernstein. … [Read more...]

January 8, 2015

Global Market CommentsJanuary 8, 2015Fiat Lux Featured Trade:(MAD DAY TRADER JIM PARKER’S Q1, 2015 VIEWS),(SPY), (XLV), (XLK), (PCLN), (F), (TLT), (TBT),(FXE), (EUO), (FXA), (FXB),(GLD), (GDX), (SLV),(USO)(VIX), (VXX)(THE MARKETS ARE NOT RIGGED)(TESTIMONIAL) SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY)Health Care Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLV)The Select Sector SPDR Trust - The Technology … [Read more...]

Mad Day Trader Jim Parker’s Q1, 2015 Views

Jim Parker

Mad Day Trader Jim Parker is expecting the first quarter of 2015 to offer plenty of volatility and loads of great trading opportunities. He thinks the scariest moves may already be behind us. After a ferocious week of decidedly ‘RISK OFF” markets, the sweet spots going forward will be of the “RISK ON” variety. Sector leadership could change daily, with a brutal rotation, … [Read more...]

The Markets Are Not Rigged

Flash Boys

I managed to get a copy of “Flash Boys”, Michael Lewis’s latest bestseller about high frequency trading, and plowed through it over the weekend. In it, Lewis claims the markets are “rigged” for the ordinary investor, and they are getting ripped off, in effect, paying a giant “tax” to Wall Street to get their trades done. Nothing could be further from the truth. I have known … [Read more...]


John Thomas

Hi John, I now have some great strategies, which are working well thanks to you. I just need to follow them, stop listening to others, and stick more to my own plan, and of course your research. All the best for the festive season. Dallas Melbourne, Australia   Hatchet Throwing Contest at Fort Vancouver, Washington … [Read more...]

January 7, 2015

Global Market Comments January 7, 2015 Fiat Lux Featured Trade: (A VERY WESTERN CHRISTMAS), (THE BLACK SWAN SOLUTION TO OUR ENERGY PROBLEMS), (USO), (TSLA), (GE), (TESTIMONIAL) United States Oil ETF (USO)Tesla Motors, Inc. (TSLA)General Electric Company (GE)     … [Read more...]

A Very Western Christmas

Candy Cane Express

This year I had the pleasure of spending a nostalgic Christmas day in Virginia City, Nevada, now a national historic monument. The old western town is the home of the famed Comstock load, once the world’s largest silver deposit, discovered in 1859. The ore mined here played a major role in building San Francisco into an important city, and financed the Union’s victory in the … [Read more...]

The “Black Swan” Solution to Our Energy Problems

LED Lights

I firmly believe that simple solutions to our energy problems are in the process of coming out of the blue, and are something no one is thinking about now. Add up the contributions of many small improvements, and the cumulative change will alter our economic future beyond all recognition. Here are two of them. General Electric (GE) is now mass-producing their “Smart Energy … [Read more...]


Jim Parker

Dear Jim Parker, I cannot thank you enough for the service that you are providing.  In my case, I can honestly say that you are accomplishing your goals of enabling me to trade profitably.   I wish you a well-earned rest and the best of joy with your family and friends during this season.    Rene Y. Retired Canadian Farmer   … [Read more...]

January 7, 2015 – Quote of the Day

David Tepper

“2015 is setting up to be a repeat of 1999,” the year when NASDAQ delivered a nonstop melt up, rocketing by a stunning 85%, said my friend and hedge fund legend, David Tepper. … [Read more...]

January 6, 2015

Global Market CommentsJanuary 6, 2015Fiat Lux 2015 Annual Asset Class Review FOR PAID SUBSCRIBERS ONLY Featured Trades:(SPX), (QQQ), (XLF), (XLE), (XLI), (XLY), (EEM), (SCTY), (TAN),(TLT), (TBT), (JNK), (PHB), (HYG), (PCY), (MUB), (HCP)(FXE), (EUO), (FXC), (FXA), (YCS), (FXY), (CYB)(FCX), (VALE), (MOO), (DBA), (MOS), (MON), (AGU), (POT), (PHO), (FIW), (CORN), (WEAT), (SOYB), … [Read more...]

January 5, 2015

Global Market Comments January 5, 2015 Fiat Lux Featured Trade: (THE AMERICAN ONSHORING TREND IS ACCELERATING), (GE), (TSLA), (TESTIMONIAL) General Electric Company (GE)Tesla Motors, Inc. (TSLA) … [Read more...]

The American Onshoring Trend is Accelerating

Leonard DiCaprio

Onshoring, the return of US manufacturing from abroad, is rapidly gathering pace. It is increasingly playing a crucial part in the unfolding American industrial renaissance. It could well develop into the most important new trend on the global economic scene during the early 21st century. It is also paving the way for a return of the roaring twenties to our home shores. Of … [Read more...]


John Thomas - Melbourne

Thanks for your very informative daily updates and stories. I subscribe to four daily investment advisors and yours are the only one I always read and almost always follow. I followed your trades to the letter and most were successful. The problem was I was not trading live (always at least half a day late and sometimes a full day due to the time difference (US versus AUD), … [Read more...]

January 5, 2015 – Quote of the Day

Grave Diggers

“Guys that are short, they better have a shovel to dig themselves out of the grave,” said legendary hedge fund manager, David Tepper, of Appaloosa Management. … [Read more...]

January 2, 2015


The Long View on Emerging Markets


I managed to catch a few comments in the distinct northern accent of Jim O'Neil, the fabled analyst who invented the 'BRIC' term, and who was later kicked upstairs to the chairman's seat at Goldman Sachs International (GS) in London. Jim thinks that it is still the early days for the space, and that these countries have another ten years of high growth ahead of them. As I have … [Read more...]

How to Avoid the Ponzi Scheme Trap

Bernie Madoff

I spent a sad and depressing, but highly instructional evening with Dr. Stephen Greenspan, who had lost most of his personal fortune with Bernie Madoff. The University of Connecticut psychology professor had poured the bulk of his savings into Sandra Mansky's Tremont feeder fund; receiving convincing trade confirms and rock solid custody statements from the Bank of New … [Read more...]

Murray Sayle: The Passing of a Giant in Journalism

Murray Sayle

I was saddened when I heard of the death of my close friend, the Australian, Murray Sayle a few years ago, after his long battle with Parkinson's disease at the age of 84. Murray was one of the giants of journalism in the second half of the 20th century. He started by editing the newspaper at University of Sydney, where his incendiary opinions got him expelled from school. It … [Read more...]



We view The Mad Hedge Fund Trader as a vital resource that helps us focus on major market trends that are most likely to make money over time. It is a resource that helps us filter out the daily noise in various markets and the mostly irrelevant commentary of TV's talking heads. Unlike many newsletters that focus on one strategy or asset class The Mad Hedge Fund Trader's … [Read more...]

January 2, 2015 – Quote of the Day

Walter Bagehot

“A central bank is best that governs least, but is prepared to govern radically when called upon,” said 19th century man of letters, Walter Bagehot, an early editor of The Economist … [Read more...]

December 31, 2014

Global Market Comments December 31, 2014 Fiat Lux Featured Trade: (FRIDAY APRIL 3 HONOLULU, HAWAII STRATEGY LUNCHEON), (WILL SYNBIO SAVE OR DESTROY THE WORLD?), (XLV), (XPH), (XBI), (MON), (IBM), (GOOG), (AAPL), (CSCO) Health Care Select Sector SPDR (XLV) SPDR S&P Pharmaceuticals ETF (XPH) SPDR S&P Biotech ETF (XBI) Monsanto Company (MON) International Business … [Read more...]

Will SynBio Save or Destroy the World?

Man Bio Hazard Suit

Some 40 years ago, when I was a biotechnology student at UCLA, a handful of graduate students speculated about how dangerous our work really was. It only took us an hour to figure out how to synthesize a microbe that had a 99% fatality rate, was immune to antibiotics, and was so simple it could be produced in your home kitchen. Basically, a bunch of bored students discovered a … [Read more...]

December 31, 2014 – Quote of the Day

Obama Inaugeration

“It is very important for President Obama to succeed,” said former President George W. Bush to Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, three weeks after the inauguration. … [Read more...]

December 30, 2014

Global Market Comments December 30, 2014 Fiat Lux Featured Trade: (THE SECOND AMERICAN INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION), (INDU), (SPY), (QQQ), (USO), (UNG), (GLD), (DBA), (TESTIMONIAL) Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDU) SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) PowerShares QQQ (QQQ) United States Oil ETF (USO) United States Natural Gas ETF (UNG) SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) PowerShares … [Read more...]

December 30, 2014 – Quote of the Day


"The Fed is not worried about inflation in the next few years and want growth first, growth second, and growth third. With the stabilization of Europe, the apparent pick up in China, and a US economy still on a reasonable footing, the Fed's heavy leaning to a growth policy should lead to a pretty favorable environment for the markets," said legendary hedge fund manager, David … [Read more...]

December 29, 2014

Global Market Comments December 29, 2013 Fiat Lux Featured Trades: (BE CAREFUL WHO YOU SNITCH ON), (A CONVERSATION WITH THE BOOTS ON THE GROUND), (DINNER WITH JOSEPH STIGLITZ) … [Read more...]

Be Careful Who You Snitch On

Sherron Watkins

Buried in the recently passed Dodd-Frank financial reform bill are massive financial rewards for turning in your crooked boss. The SEC is hoping that multimillion dollar rewards amounting to 10%-30% of sanction amounts will drive a stampede of whistleblowers to their doors with evidence of malfeasance and fraud by their employers. If such rules were in place at the time of the … [Read more...]

A Conversation with the Boots on the Ground

Defense Language Institute

I have spent many hours speaking at length with the generals who are running our wars in the Middle East, like David Petraeus, and James E. Cartwright. To get the boots on the ground view, I attended the graduation of a friend at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California, the world's preeminent language training facility. As I circulated at the reception at the … [Read more...]

Dinner with Joseph Stiglitz

Joseph Stiglitz

The great thing about interviewing Joseph Stiglitz over dinner is that you don't have to ask any questions. You just turn him on and he spits out one zinger after another. And he does this in a kibitzing, wizened, grandfatherly manner like one would expect from a character that just walked off the set of Fiddler on the Roof. The unfortunate thing is that you also don't get to … [Read more...]

December 29, 2014 – Quote of the Day

Ben Bernanke

“We’re still operating off of Jackson Hole, 2011 when Ben Bernanke delivered his famous speech preceding quantitative easing,” said foreign exchange trader, Ira Harris. … [Read more...]

December 26, 2014

Global Market CommentsDecember 26, 2013Fiat Lux Featured Trade:(CHINA’S LONG AND WINDING ROAD), (FXI), (CYB),(INDUSTIRES YOU WILL NEVER HEAR FROM ME ABOUT) iShares China Large-Cap (FXI)WisdomTree Chinese Yuan Strategy ETF (CYB) … [Read more...]

China’s Long and Winding Road

Chinese Woman

I spent the evening speaking to Gao Jie, a Beijing civil judge who left the bench to join China's growing environmental movement when her kids came home from school one day coughing and wheezing. You only have to inhale in the capitol city these days to understand that they have a huge problem there. One of the dirty little secrets of international trade for the last three … [Read more...]

Industries You Will Never Hear From Me About

Arnold Swartenegger

The focus of this letter is to show people how to make money through investing in fast growing, highly profitable companies which have stiff, long term macroeconomic winds at their backs. That means I ignore a large part of the US economy whose time has passed and are headed for the dustbin of history. According to the Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, the ten … [Read more...]

December 26, 2014 – Quote of the Day


“People are investing with a rear view mirror. Last year, you had people legitimately scared out of the market. Unfortunately, you are losing a generation of investors at a time when they ought to be thinking about buying high quality stocks,” said Hersh Cohen of Clearbridge Advisors. … [Read more...]

December 24, 2014

Global Market Comments December 24, 2014 Featured Trades: (A CHRISTMAS STORY) … [Read more...]

A Christmas Story

John Thomas with Santa

When I was growing up in Los Angeles during the fifties, the most exciting day of the year was when my dad took me to buy a Christmas tree. With its semi desert climate, Southern California offered pine trees that were scraggly at best, and we didn’t want to chop down the view that we had. So the Southern Pacific Railroad made a big deal out of bringing trees down from much … [Read more...]

December 24, 2014 – Quote of the Day

ice cream

“This isn’t a choice between vanilla and chocolate folks, it’s all rocky road: a few marshmallows to get you excited before the elections, but with a lot of nuts to ruin the aftermath,” said the ever insightful, Bill Gross, at PIMCO. … [Read more...]

December 23, 2014

Global Market CommentsDecember 23, 2014Fiat Lux Featured Trade:(INDIA IS CATCHING UP WITH CHINA),(WHO SAYS HEDGE FUNDS AREN’T ADDING VALUE?)(PIN), (FXI)(PETER F. DRUCKER ON MANAGEMENT) PowerShares India ETF (PIN)iShares China Large-Cap (FXI) … [Read more...]

Who Says Hedge Funds Aren’t Adding Value?


According to my old friend, Rick Sopher, chairman of LCH Investments in London, the top ten hedge funds have earned $153 billion for their investors since inception. Rick, who runs his business from an elegant flat on posh Eaton Square, compiled the list after a comprehensive survey of the still operating 7,000 hedge funds worldwide. It is dominated by marquee names like Bruce … [Read more...]

Peter F. Drucker on Management

The Essential Drucker

If you have been living in a cave for the last 74 years and missed the work of management guru, Peter F. Drucker, here is your chance to catch up. I just finished reading The Essential Drucker, a weighty tome of 368 pages which summarized the high points and pearls of wisdom of the author's 38 books published since 1939. A self-described 'social ecologist', Drucker was a … [Read more...]

December 23, 2014 – Quote of the Day


“You can reduce discretionary spending down to zero and it won’t have much impact on our fiscal problems because it’s such a small proportion of the total,” said Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve. … [Read more...]

December 22, 2014


Last Chance to Attend the Chicago Tuesday, December 23 Global Strategy Luncheon


Come join me for lunch for the Mad Hedge Fund Trader’s Global Strategy Update, which I will be conducting in Chicago on Tuesday, December 23. A three course lunch will be followed by a PowerPoint presentation and an extended question and answer period. I’ll be giving you my up to date view on stocks, bonds, foreign currencies, commodities, precious metals, and real estate. And … [Read more...]

The One Bright Spot in Real Estate

US Population 2010-2050

I feel obliged to reveal one corner of this bubbling market that might actually make sense. By 2050 the population of California will soar from 37 million to 50 million, and the US from 300 million to 400 million, according to data released by the US Census Bureau and the CIA fact Book (check out the population pyramid below). That means enormous demand for the low end of the … [Read more...]

A Short History of Hedge Funds

Money, Arms Full

Legendary Fortune Magazine editor, Winslow Jones, created the first hedge fund out of a shabby office on Broadway in New York City in 1948, and generated monster returns over the next 20 years. He got the idea of a 20% performance bonus, now an industry standard, from ancient Phoenician sea captains who kept a fifth of the profits from successful voyages. Jones must have had … [Read more...]

The ‘Population Bomb’ Echoes

Fruit Market

Pack your portfolios with agricultural plays like Potash (POT), Mosaic (MOS), and Agrium (AGU) if Dr. Paul Ehrlich is just partially right about the impending collapse in the world's food supply. You might even throw in long positions in wheat (WEAT), corn (CORN), soybeans (SOYB), and rice. The never dull and often controversial Stanford biology professor told me he expects … [Read more...]

Thank Goodness I Don’t Live in Sweden!


I recently found the chart below showing world tax rates as a percentage of GDP for the past 40 years. Sweden suffers the world's heaviest tax burden at 51%, compared to only 27% in the US. The US has among the world's lowest tax burdens in terms of actual taxes paid, which has been falling for the last ten years. Listening to TV pundits, you would think we had the world's … [Read more...]

December 19, 2014

Global Market Comments December 19, 2014 Fiat Lux SPECIAL END OF YEAR ISSUE Featured Trade: (GO LONG CHRISTMAS CHEER AND HOT BUTTERED RUM), (MY LAST RESEARCH PIECE OF THE YEAR) … [Read more...]

A Thank You from The Mad Hedge Fund Trader

John Thomas with Santa

You are in safe hands now, with your trading portfolios up 34% on the year, if you had followed every one of my Trade Alerts to the letter. So I am calling it quits for the year. By the time you read this, I will be winging my way to Chicago to deliver the last global strategy lunch of the year (click here to buy). After that, I will be making a beeline for my beachfront … [Read more...]

My Last Research Piece of the Year

Jack Nicholson

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes … [Read more...]

December 19, 2014 – Quote of the Day


“If the Fed brings a lump of coal in the form of a taper, then they better brings some candy canes for the kids as well. It looks like they did,” said Bill Gross, CEO of bond giant, PIMCO. … [Read more...]

December 18, 2014

Global Market CommentsDecember 18, 2014Fiat Lux Featured Trade:(VOLATILITY HERE IS PEAKING), (VXX), (VIX), (XIV),(HEDGE FUNDS: THE NEW DUMB MONEY)(TESTIMONIAL) iPath S&P 500 VIX ST Futures ETN (VXX)VOLATILITY S&P 500 (^VIX)VelocityShares Daily Inverse VIX ST ETN (XIV) … [Read more...]

Volatility Here is Peaking

Man-Pogo Stick

I am one of those cheapskates who buys Christmas ornaments by the bucket load from Costco in January for ten cents on the dollar, because my eleven month theoretical return on capital comes close to 1,000%. I also like buying flood insurance in the middle of the summer when the forecast here in California is for endless days of sunshine. That is what we are facing now with … [Read more...]