Sat, 9 June 2012
Countries around the globe are teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, with our own country no exception. Jason Hartman interviews Dr. Kirk Elliot, Ph.D., investment adviser with ICA, on monetary and fiscal policy and the irresponsibility of governments around the world.
Using Greece as an example, Dr. Elliott states that when governments run out of money, they start doing crazy things. The one fundamental issue in Greece is public debt, over which they lost their autonomy and are now under the rules of the EU. Italy, Iceland, Portugal, France and others are on the verge of bankruptcy and due to that, the EU has been unable to bail out Greece.
Across the pond in the U.S., we have lost our credit rating and are losing the reserve currency status with a lack of interest in our Treasury bills and notes. The definition of inflation is an increase in the money supply, and price increases are a symptom of inflation.
As more money is printed, it loses value and nobody wants it, which is sending the U.S. down the same tube as other countries in economic crisis. People around the world have lost faith in the U.S. dollar and the country’s ability to repay its debt. Dr. Elliott says when interest rates go up, it will open a whole new can of worms with the bond market, which will come crashing down hard on retirees and insurance companies. But it’s not all doom and gloom. There are counter-cyclical investment strategies that people should take advantage of that are attached to physical assets, such as precious metals and real estate investments (commodities with universal need.)
Kirk Elliott has been an investment adviser with ICA in Durango, Colorado since January of 2002 and has been working in the financial services industry since 1994. Dr. Elliott is passionate about educating and equipping his clients with the information they need to safeguard their hard-earned assets. Dr. Elliott earned his Ph.D. in Public Policy and Administration from Walden University.
His dissertation is entitled, “An Empirical Identification of an Appropriate Inflation Definition and an Inflation Targeting Monetary Policy.” Dr. Elliott also earned a Master of Arts in International Studies from the University of Denver, and a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Colorado. Dr. Elliott has served as adjunct faculty for Fort Lewis College, Liberty University and Walden University in the areas of Economics, Public Policy, and International Business.
Direct download: cw-261-KirkElliot1.mp3
-- posted at: 9:18am EDT
Thu, 24 May 2012
Jason Hartman interviews research scientist, Heidi Grant Halvorson regarding the science behind human motivation and success. There are many successful people in the world who are highly motivated and have concise goals, but how many actually understand why they’re successful or why they fail? The common belief is that certain people are just genetically wired to succeed or fail.
Heidi states this is not entirely the case and shares the findings of scientific research on achievement. She talks about strategies that people use, principles that people can count on and apply to their own life, and states that our own intuition about what helps us succeed or causes us to fail can often be incorrect. It's not about ability or IQ.
Heidi explains the psychological factors behind how people react to challenges, the beliefs and mindsets that people have as they try to reach a goal. Defining success is personal, dependent on an individual’s sense of well-being, lasting happiness and autonomy. She says it's important to be specific about goals, to break them down into manageable, specific pieces that are planned out with when and where, and taking the time to define success for ourselves.
Jason and Heidi also discuss the relationship between money and happiness, expressing that there is a money point where it does make it easier to make choices and pursue the things individuals find interesting in life, plus containing a sense of accomplishment and opening the door to help others. Unhappiness comes about when a person makes and uses their money for the wrong reasons, lacking sensibility, leading to dissatisfaction. Heidi emphasizes motivation and realistic goals are important. Jason shares his own opinion on wealth, noting that, on the one hand, having more “things” can actually become a burden, but it does allow a person to help others and create experiences and memories. Heidi states that what people do with their wealth is the important factor for fulfillment and happiness.
Direct download: cw-260-HeidiHalverson.mp3
-- posted at: 7:06am EDT
Wed, 16 May 2012
Jason Hartman and returning guest, Dan Amerman discuss federal policies and interest rates, which hurts the savers and fixed income folks. The artificially low interest rates are not working and create higher prices through inflation.
They also discuss inflation rates, in which the federal numbers are glossed over and do not match true inflation as experienced by the American citizens through food, fuel, and utilities. Manufacturers hide inflation by making products smaller.
Jason and Dan then talk about rental housing and how to arbitrage the inflation. Dan explains how to turn the fed policies around to our advantage. It starts with understanding cash flow investing and setting your safety margin. When looking at cash flows, rather than being all about the price, it’s more about the interest rate when it comes to a mortgage. In the process of creating non-free-market interest rates for banks and for the federal government, the federal government has accidentally made available subsidized mortgage rates that are available if you can get the lending.
It goes directly to your bottom line as the investor, resulting in much higher cash flows than you would see in a free market.
Direct download: cw-259-DanAmerman.mp3
-- posted at: 8:29am EDT
Mon, 7 May 2012
We are all confused about economic indicators and it’s critical that we understand the real figures, the direction of the economy, interest rates and their consequences, and much more. On this episode, Jason Hartman interviews Bernie Baumohl, author of Secrets of Economic Indicators, in regard to the numerous economic indicators and what is most useful. Bernie explains what a “business cycle” is and what happens during the cycle, how it comes full circle over time.
Bernie gives examples of stress points in the business cycle. People make mistakes, such as buying more inventory than they need or the economy can’t handle the demand of the people. More recently, we have seen longer periods of economic growth, but at a closer look, the mistakes that caused the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression are apparent. It was a “cauldron of fraud and wrecklessness,” says Bernie. Jason and Bernie touch on the subject of the Federal Reserve and the Gold Standard, citing what has been happening in Greece as an example of the limitations of a currency that is fixed and unmovable. Bernie feels that a country in economic trouble needs to have the flexibility to lower interest rates. They also discuss market sensitivity, the index, and the source of the leading market indicators.
Direct download: cw-258-BernieBaumohl.mp3
-- posted at: 5:22pm EDT
Tue, 1 May 2012
Jason Hartman is joined on this episode by Greg Farrell, author of Crash of the Titans: Greed, Hubris, The Fall of Merrill Lynch, and the Near Collapse of Bank of America, for a discussion of the economic crash and the resulting bailouts, as well as some of the inside dealings with some of the major banks, such as the buyouts by Bank of America.
Greg explains how these banks that participated in the buyouts grossly underestimated the depth of problems in their own banks and in those they acquired. Greg relates his research on Merrill Lynch’s attempt in the 1980s to become more like Goldman Sachs and other Wall Street banks, which was to their detriment because they lacked the expertise for such business practices, and became involved in and in the middle of many of the scandals of the late ‘80s and early ‘90s. Like CitiGroup, they were in over their head.
Jason and Greg discuss Wall Street in general and then specific financial groups regarding the recklessness and risky businesses, funds, etc, that they entertained to give the impression of higher rates of returns. As the plot unfolded, large bonuses to CEOs and high-producing brokers came into play, which encouraged an all or nothing attitude toward the company and fostered a “me” attitude versus long-term stability of the company. Greg also talks about what he calls the “Charlotte Mafia,” the clash of company cultures.
Greg Farrell is a correspondent for the Financial Times. In January 2009, he broke the news that Merrill Lynch had paid out its 2008 bonuses a month ahead of schedule, in December, even though Merrill was in the process of losing $28 billion for the year, and Bank of America needed an extra $20 billion in taxpayer funds to complete its acquisition of the firm. That story sparked an investigation by New York attorney general Andrew Cuomo.
Direct download: cw-257-GregFarrell.mp3
-- posted at: 10:33am EDT
Fri, 27 April 2012
Jason Hartman interviews returning guest, Bryan Calderon, Director of Business Development with Accuplan Benefits Services, for a timely discussion on breaking out of 401k jail and putting your retirement money to better use. Bryan explains the differences between the various retirement plans, such as IRAs and 401ks, and though a 401k is a great way to save money, there are some pitfalls as well. Some of those traps have been scams, employers stealing funds from employees and the concerns over business failures. Jason reminds listeners of why it’s so important to be in control of your money.
Bryan says there are less than 2 percent of plans that are self-directed. That’s a scary figure with all of the current economic uncertainty. Bryan talks about how people are concerned enough about the funds in their retirement plans that some still employed ask for early termination in order to get control of their money by putting it into a self-directed IRA or solo 401K. One of the best methods of control is investing in prudent real estate. Jason includes a recorded audio explanation of the manipulation by fund managers and how to break free from the 401k jail by becoming a real estate investor.
Bryan shares options for getting out of their current plans, and he also explains how a solo 401k works for the self-employed. Unlike a sponsored plan, a solo 401k or self-directed IRA can be directed into real estate, promissory notes, trustees, etc. Bryan says that there is about $20 trillion in retirement plans across the nation, with only $4 trillion of it self-directed, and the Social Security sector funds are about $5 trillion. Bryan wraps up with some valuable advice on getting your funds freed up.
Direct download: cw-256-Entrust.mp3
-- posted at: 5:10pm EDT
Tue, 24 April 2012
Jason Hartman discusses the return of construction jobs, new home development, the Indianapolis rental housing market, Wall Street/hedge funds getting into the landlord business, how investment and vacation home sales surged last year (National Association of Realtors NAR survey and Lawrence Yun commentary), developers selling homes in La Costa, California and a Memphis, Tennessee market profile.
Is it a sign of a turnaround when the nations top homebuilders increase advertising and production? Keep an eye out for big names like - Pulte Homes (PHM), Centex (CTX), Kaufman and Broad (KB Homes) (KB), Ryland Group (RYL), Del Webb (DEL), Lennar (LEN), Richmond American Homes, Beazer Homes (BZH, BZU), Hovnanian (NasdaqGM HOVNP), Toll Brothers (NYSE - TOL), Shea Homes, D.R. Horton (DHI) and the others as the ramp up their marketing and production.
When construction comes back, that is a very good sign that you, our client, is making excellent investment choices when buying below the cost of construction. Jason's key phrase/metric is "Regression to Replacement Cost(TM)" http://www.jasonhartman.com/2011-trend-predictions-in-real-estate/ and it will serve you well in these changing times.
Some market profile information from Wikipedia: Memphis is a city in the southwestern corner of the U.S. state of Tennessee, and the county seat of Shelby County. The city is located on the 4th Chickasaw Bluff, south of the confluence of the Wolf and Mississippi rivers.
Memphis had a population of 662,897 at the 2010 census, making it the largest city in the state of Tennessee, the third largest in the Southeastern United States, and the 20th largest in the United States. The greater Memphis metropolitan area, including adjacent counties in Mississippi and Arkansas, had a 2010 population of 1,316,100. This makes Memphis the second largest metropolitan area in Tennessee, surpassed only by metropolitan Nashville, which has overtaken Memphis in recent years.
Memphis is the youngest of Tennessee's major cities. A resident of Memphis is referred to as a Memphian, and the Memphis region is known, particularly to media outlets, as the "Mid-South".
Direct download: cw-255-Memphis.mp3
-- posted at: 1:20pm EDT
Mon, 16 April 2012
Jason Hartman interviews returning guest and founder and CEO, Harry Dent, Jr., of HS Dent, an economic think tank and research company, about the next coming crash. Mr. Dent accurately predicted the boom of the 1990s, which was contrary to what many other forecasters predicted. He explains why America is on a path to the next Great Depression through its mounting debt to boost the economy.
He talks about how the U.S. creates bubble after bubble in all areas, such as the housing bubble, the gold and silver bubble, the commodity bubble, etc. Trillions of dollars in stimulus money has poured forth from the government, along with the lowering of interest rates, thereby inciting inflation that will continue to grow with the current system of bailouts and lack of lending. He also discusses the peaks and deflation of spending with the switch between the Baby Boomer and current generations, and how this will affect America's economic future.
Mr. Dent also paints the dark picture of China’s future, where they are overbuilding just to keep their workers employed, which will become a worldwide crisis when their building bubble bursts. Jason and Mr. Dent talk about the condition of other countries and how everything interplays to lead to the next crash that Mr. Dent forecasts. He suggests some strategies for investors and what people might expect.
Using exciting new research developed from years of hands-on business experience, Harry S. Dent, Jr. offers a refreshingly positive and understandable view of the economic future. As a bestselling author on economics, Mr. Dent is the developer of The Dent Method - an economic forecasting approach based on changes in demographic trends.
In all of his past books since 1989, Dent saw an end to the Baby Boom spending cycle around the end of this decade. In his book, The Great Depression Ahead, (Free Press, 2009), Harry Dent outlined how this next great downturn is likely to unfold in three stages, with an interim boom stage between 2012 and 2017 before the long-term slowdown finally turns into the next global boom in the early 2020s. He continued to educate audiences about his predictions for the next and possibly last great bull market, from late 2005 into early to mid 2010.
Direct download: cw-254-HarryDent.mp3
-- posted at: 4:05pm EDT
Wed, 11 April 2012
Join Jason Hartman and Investor Watchdog, Jack Waymire, for a discussion concerning the ethics of the financial services industry. According to Jack, the frequent lack of integrity undermines the achievement of investors’ financial goals.
Companies do not do what is best for you. They are very good at hiding information that they do not want their investors to know. Investor Watchdog investigates these companies and products, acting as a go-between for investors and advisers, answering frequently asked questions, such as, “How do I know I’m getting the right financial advice?” Jack shares examples of deceptive practices by various companies and how the executives that run the companies, i.e. Goldman Sachs, are insulated from accountability simply by paying fines rather than serving jail time for unethical and illegal practices.
Jason and Jack touch on the subject of the Madoff Ponzi Scheme, where Jack talks about some of the evidence that was found, as a glaring example of unethical sales pitches and conman tactics. Jack also informs listeners of what deceptive sales practices to watch out for when dealing with financial advisers.
Direct download: cw-253-JackWaymire.mp3
-- posted at: 7:02pm EDT
Fri, 6 April 2012
Despite popular belief, China is no longer a cheap place to do business with labor costs and real estate costs soaring. Join Jason Hartman as he interviews Shaun Rein, author of The End of Cheap China and Managing Director of China Market Research Group in Shanghai, about debunking common myths, such as China is stealing U.S. jobs.
Many companies have begun doing business in China, due to what Shaun refers to as “capitalism on steroids.” Labor costs have increased in China to the tune of around 20 percent, and the government is trying to increase wages yearly over the next five years. Another factor affecting manufacturing costs over time is that fewer of the younger generation wants to be employed in manufacturing jobs, wanting to realize their white class dreams. China is also pushing middle class development to offset the manufacturing issue.
Shaun Rein is the Managing Director of CMR, the world's leading strategic market intelligence firm. He is one of the world's recognized thought leaders on strategy consulting.
Direct download: cw-252-ShaunRein.mp3
-- posted at: 9:06am EDT