Saturday, June 2, 2012

Saturday Links

Failed cherry crop in MI: "The freakish meteorological events of March—two weeks of midsummer temperatures, followed by successive nights of hard freeze—likely ruined nearly all the 185 million pounds of the Montmorency cherries harvested in Michigan each summer, according to farmers and state officials."

WSJ: "As Costs Soar, Taxpayers Target Pensions of Cops and Firefighters"

WSJ: "Mutual Funds Push To Restrict Hedge Fund Ads"

More demographic collapse: "A generation ago Spain was just coming out of its Francoist era, a strongly Catholic country with among the highest birth rates in Europe, with the average woman producing almost four children in 1960 and nearly three as late as 1975-1976. [...] In a half century Spain’s fertility rate has fallen more than 50% to 1.4 children per female, one of the lowest not only in Europe, but also the world and well below the 2.1 rate necessary simply to replace the current population. More recently the rate has dropped further at least 5 percent."

The book in Spain: El suicidio demográfico de España "Pero casi lo más sorprendente de este asunto es lo poco que se habla de él en los medios, y su virtual ausencia en el debate político-económico en España, más allá del problema de las pensiones, pese a su extrema gravedad."

Latest Thiel class: "Sizing up the competition is a similar task. If you take a hard look at your network—search through the Silicon Valley part of the forest—and see no capital being deployed and no one working on the same problems, you can be reasonably confident that you’re alone. People would really have to come out of nowhere."

"Out of all the supplements, the ones that impress me the most are NAC and magnesium. NAC sure isn't "evolutionary psychiatry," but in this modern world of stress, poor sleep, and inflammatory food, beefing up the glutathione and taming the glutamate seems like a reasonable approach..."

Also Thiel: "It is very hard hard for investors to invest in things that are unique. The psychological struggle is hard to overstate. People gravitate to the modern portfolio approach. The narrative that people tell is that their portfolio will be a portfolio of different things. But that seems odd."

US earnings estimates declining

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