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Retired chief investment officer and former NYSE firm partner with 50 plus years experience in field as analyst / economist, portfolio manager / trader, and CIO who has superb track record with multi $billion equities and fixed income portfolios. Advanced degrees, CFA. Having done much professional writing as a young guy, I now have a cryptic style. 40 years down on and around The Street confirms: CAVEAT EMPTOR IN SPADES !!!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Oil & Gold -- Wild & Wooly

Oil and Gold prices took off in the immediate wake of the
subprime financial crisis circa mid-August. Speculators have
bought the whole nine yards of the "Helicopter Ben" pastiche.
The Fed's decision to cut the FFR% in mid-September only added
fuel to the story. Ben has not complied, except seasonally.
Then there's GWB / Cheney and Iran's Ahmgonnabebad kiting the
oil price with an ongoing pissing match regarding Iran's
nuclear ambitions.

Now, we have both oil and gold in speculative blow-off mode,
with prices for each now in danger zones viewed long term.
Both markets are getting extended and vulnerable. So, I
would say that whatever your upside targets for these entities
may be, recognize that prices are in zones when even slight
dents to the mantras can lead to unsportsmanlike tumbles.

The Fed normally adds to liquidity as the holiday season
approaches, and the FOMC is moving at a remarkably leisurely
pace. GWB and The Shooter want to sound tough vis a vis Iran
and help out their oil buddies as well. Their macho routine
has been ineffective geopolitically and has been a disservice
to the US from an economic perspective. With the troop "surge"
of this year and the large naval build up in the Gulf, I would
have thought that US aircraft would have lit up the border with
Iran already to disrupt supply pipelines to Iran's Iraqi
clientele. And, I doubt we can count on the Turks to hit oil
production in northern Iraq.

So, lots of talk all round, but not any action. Oil and gold
might need some of that wilder action to keep the runs going.

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