Climate Progress?

John Kerry, the U.S. special envoy on climate change, recently said, “We’re in trouble, I hope everyone understands that.” He went on to say, “The world is not on a good track to meet a global goal to avoid the worst impacts of climate change”.  Actually, we may be going in the wrong direction.  Both … Continued

If You Can Find a Better Job, Take It.

To paraphrase Lee Iacocca’s sales pitch, “If you can find a better car, buy it”.  This is how the economy works.  There has been considerable media focus on the so called “Great Resignation”, a term created to describe the large number of people who are quitting their current jobs. The important thing for investors to … Continued

When All You Have is a Hammer, Everything’s a Nail

The administration is currently in the process of approving a $52 billion dollar infusion into the computer chip industry, in order, they would have us believe, to address the current shortage of chips.   It is generally accepted that it takes about two years to add significant chip capacity.  The worldwide industry is currently making … Continued

“I’ve Got the World on a String”

And the well-known Frank Sinatra song continues, “sitting on a rainbow got the string around my finger.”  If Mr. Putin sings in the shower, this might be his favorite melody, as he watches the West dangling at the end of his string (gas pipeline). If you’re looking for a solution here, you can stop reading … Continued

Bullying Big Banks and Big Oil

There has been a noticeable increase in efforts to bully big oil into reducing fossil fuel assets and to apply similar pressure on big banks to not finance fossil fuel projects.  We discussed this issue in our blog of June 2, 2021 “Fossil Fuels: Big Companies Divest, Small Companies Invest.” Now we have an article … Continued

Beijing is Pursuing the Solomon Islands

Over the last several years we have posted a number of blogs, most recently on September 22, 2021, “Sea Power”, relating to the importance of freedom of the seas, particularly with regard to the risks surrounding the critical Malacca Strait and the increasing adventurism of China in the South China Sea.  Apparently the Chinese have … Continued

Fake It ‘till You Can Make It

Investors are continuously subject to extravagant projections by those who are seeking to attract financing.  These can range between borderline, or even outright fraud, think Theranos, or relatively minor, and often unintentional estimate shortfalls, such as a slippage of time lines.  Think the ever shifting timeline for the start of production for Tesla’s cyber truck … Continued

Retirement and the Labor Shortage

It is generally accepted that, over the last two years, a significant number of Americans have left the workforce for a wide variety of reasons. As a result, workforce participation has seen a material decline. Among those who have left, it appears that a number chose early retirement, perhaps over health concerns or because a … Continued

Pricing Power and Inflation

Investors typically seek to build portfolios that focus on companies with pricing power.  Without that, as costs increase, margins can be squeezed.  Currently, we seem to be in a period of rising costs, particularly for labor and certain commodities.  Companies are likely to look first to productivity gains and raw material substitution, but, sooner or … Continued


Wikipedia defines cynicism as an attitude characterized by a general distrust of other’s motives.  Investors would be well served by maintaining a healthy level of skepticism regarding other’s motives when evaluating projections and other factors surrounding an investment decision.  Think Theranos. Consider the recurring attacks on the safety of cruising.  Now the CDC says don’t … Continued

Natural Gas and Inflation

Natural gas is an important raw material in a wide range of economic activities, including heating, electric power generation, plastics, manufacturing processes and agriculture.  For example, fertilizer prices, responding to significant cost increases for key chemical ingredients such as natural gas, have more than doubled over the last year.  This can have a two pronged … Continued

Shooting Yourself in the Foot

This idiom is often associated with damaging or impeding one’s own plans, progress, actions or best interests through foolish actions or words.  Germany may be exhibit A.  It would seem that a major developed country facing a generational energy crunch would be trying everything possible to expand supply while doing as little environmental damage as … Continued