Shanghai to Detroit

Last week Sigma had the honor of hosting nine students from Shanghai University. The students are visiting Southeast Michigan through the Macomb Cultural and Economic Partnership, a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering relationships between southeast Michigan officials, businesses and schools and the rest of the world. These students are spending two months in Michigan visiting … Continued

I Can Hear the Bells

“I Can Hear the Bells” is a wonderful song from the musical Hairspray, sung by Tracy Tumblad as she “hears the bells” when thinking about her fantasy love with heartthrob, Link Larken. Yes, even after all these years bells still ring when I think about my husband. However, each time I hear someone bemoan or … Continued

”Neither a Borrower nor a Lender Be”

That was probably good advice in William Shakespeare’s day, but is not applicable in a modern society. Advanced economies require liquidity and seamless credit, which in turn requires responsible lending and borrowing. At any given time, nearly all of us are either borrowers or lenders, often both at the same time. If you have a … Continued

Investing For Your Own Time Horizon

Every talking head on the television and every armchair investor are seemingly willing to give an opinion on many different investments. There is a lot of good and bad information available. What’s most important is not only that the information is correct but also that the investment matches your own time horizon. If you are … Continued

Will Weakness in Ford and GM Shares Continue?

Despite improving domestic sales, Ford and GM shares have not kept pace with the market, as measured by the most of the popular averages. GM’s US vehicle sales were up 15.5% in June and up 4.3% for the first six months of 2012. For the same periods, Ford reported gains of 7.1% and 6.6%. But … Continued

You Did Not Build That, or, Atlas Shrugged (again)

“He didn’t invent iron ore and blast furnaces, did he?” “Who?” “Rearden. He didn’t invent smelting and chemistry and air compression. He couldn’t have invented his Metal but for thousands and thousands of other people. His Metal! Why does he think it’s his? Why does he think it’s his invention? Everybody uses the work of … Continued

GM Pensioners – Deadline Tomorrow – July 20th!

The deadline for pensioners to decide whether to accept a lump sum offer from General Motors is tomorrow – Friday July 20th! Sigma is available to help advise on any last minute decisions. Today’s New York Times featured an article about these decisions, and quoted our own Christopher Frayne, CFA, CFP®. Check out the article … Continued

Thoughts About Energy Generally, and Natural Gas Specifically

Natural gas is currently trading at approximately $2.50-3.00/mmBTU (million British Thermal Units) and oil is approximately $80/BBL (barrel). It takes approximately 5.8 mmBTU of natural gas ($15-17) to provide the same amount of heat as one barrel of oil ($80). Both are fossil fuels, although natural gas is generally viewed as relatively less hazardous to … Continued