Although we usually write about investing advice, today we’re going to head in a slightly different direction and look at some entertaining films about the financial credit crisis. Hollywood was a bit slow, to get these movies released but now the movies on the crisis are coming quickly. Attempting to recover from the credit crisis is still dominating the economies of Europe and the USA.
Gold has been performing quite well as the markets worry about the aftermath of the credit crisis and the large amount government debt in many rich countries. Movies can provide some distraction from the worries about whether we should avoid risks in of the the stock market at the moment, if it’s a good idea to invest in gold via bullionvault.com or whether BRIC countries might really be where the action is. Movies certainly will have their version of action.
A popular movie about the financial crisis is ‘Inside Job’ (clip above). Directed by Charles Ferguson, who’d previously made the highly acclaimed ‘No End In Sight’ about the Iraq war, and given a voiceover by Matt Damon, the film won the Oscar for documentaries in 2011. It gained positive reviews all over the world for it’s simple explanations of a very complex topic.
Meanwhile on the other side of the Atlantic ocean, British director David Sington made ‘The Flaw’. This flaw in question refers to the admission by Alan Greenspan (former Federal Reserve Chairman) that his model of how the world works did not match up to the weird and wonderful nature of reality. Greenspan admitted that had mistakenly put too much faith in the self-correcting power of free markets. The film has not been as widely reviewed as Inside Job, but The Economist said that while it is unbalanced, it is worth a watch.
Wherever there is an obvious political point to be made, there is sure to be Oliver Stone not far behind yelling it out. ‘Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps’ stars young Shia LaBeouf as a Wall Street trader learning from the master: Gordon Gecko. The film even has a few cameos from figures from the financial world and is generally thought of as a good beginners guide to the crisis.
Finally, two films currently in production that look at the crisis. Firstly, Paul Giamatti will be starring in the fictionalization of Andrew Sorkin’s best selling investigation into the crisis, Too Big To Fail. George Clooney is also reportedly getting in on the act with ‘700 Billion Man’, centred on Neel Kashkari, a one time Goldman Sachs executive who helped build the gigantic Troubled Asset Relief Program, aka the financial bailout.
We can’t guarantee these films will be balanced, but they should be interesting. Enjoy.
The 12 stock for 10 years portfolio consists of stocks I would be comfortable putting into an IRA for 10 years. The main criteria is for companies with a history of large positive cash flow, that seemed likely to continue that trend. I continue to be very satisfied with the portfolio and don’t see any reason for changes.
The current Marketocracy* calculated annualized rate or return (which excludes Tesco) is 7.2% (the S&P 500 annualized return for the period is 4.7%). Marketocracy subtracts the equivalent of 2% of assets annually to simulate management fees – as though the portfolio were a mutual fund – so without that (it is not like this portfolio takes much management), the return beats the S&P 500 annual return by about 4.5% annually (it would be a bit less with Tesco, but still close to 4%, I would think).
The current stocks, in order of return:
|Stock||Current Return||% of sleep well portfolio now||% of the portfolio if I were buying today|
|Amazon – AMZN||410%||11%||7%|
|Google – GOOG||184%||16%||14%|
|PetroChina – PTR||125%||8%||6%|
|Templeton Dragon Fund – TDF||100%||9%||9%|
|Templeton Emerging Market Fund – EMF||74%||6%||6%|
|Danaher – DHR||47%||9%||10%|
|Apple – AAPL||40%||6%||7%|
|Toyota – TM||14%||10%||11%|
|Intel – INTC||6%||5%||6%|
|Tesco – TSCDY||-3%**||0%*||10%|
|Cisco – CSCO||-15%||4%||5%|
|Pfizer – PFE||-17%||5%||7%|
The current marketocracy results can be seen on the Sleep Well marketocracy portfolio page.
Google is up over 13% in after hours trading on the great earnings announced last night.
That is the start of the earnings release. You can sure tell Larry Page is interested in Google+ success.
More significantly, Google web site revenue up 39% increase over second quarter 2010 revenues of $4.50 billion. Google Network Revenues (Google’s partner sites, through AdSense programs), $2.48 billion, which was 28% of total revenues, in the second quarter of 2011 (up 20% from 2010 – good, but, Google up 39% on their own sites is amazing).
GAAP earnings per share increased 35% compared to 2010. Margins did decrease, but not a huge amount: and less than many feared (Google continues to invest large amounts in future prospects).
Those are great results anytime. When you remember that money in saving accounts get less than 1% now that type of growth is even more impressive. And when you consider how large Google is now it is even more impressive. Apple is achieving similarly impressive growth as a huge company – but it is very rare.
Google ended the last quarter with over $39 billion in cash. I do think they should pay a dividend (I worry they will feel pressure to spend the cash they have and due to the large amount of cah make some foolish decisions). I continue to own Google stock. And it is the largest holding in my 12 stocks for 10 years portfolio.
The Curious Cat Investing and Economics Carnival has been published infrequently over the last few years. My plan is to start publishing it much more frequently starting now.
- Personal Finance Basics: Long Term Disability Insurance by John Hunter – “people are much less aware of the importance of long term disability insurance. The census bureau estimates that you have a 20% chance you will be disabled in your lifetime.”
- Fed’s Low Interest Rates Crack Retirees’ Nest Eggs by Mark Whitehouse – “A long spell of low interest rates has created a windfall worth billions to banks, mortgage borrowers and others it was designed to benefit. But for many people who were counting on their nest eggs, those same low rates can spell trouble.”
- How to profit from the coming Greek default by Matthew Lynn – “Sell the U.S. banks but buy the dollar. If everyone knows Greece will have to default, what’s keeping them from pulling the plug? That’s easy. The Germans and the French won’t want to ‘re-profile’ all that Greek debt until they know their banks have largely sold both the debt and the credit-default swaps associated with it to someone else.”
- Buy Cheap Bonds with Safe Spread by Bill Gross – “Investors shouldn’t give their money away, and at the moment, the duration component of a bond portfolio comes close to doing just that – not because a bear market is just around the corner come July 1, but because it doesn’t yield enough relative to inflation.”
- How to retire with no savings – “Once you hit age 50, your chances of being jobless start to rise rapidly. You don’t get to choose when you retire. The job market or your ailing body will decide for you. Most retired Americans are getting by on incomes that you’d probably consider appropriate for the Third World. And even if they wanted to work until they died, they can’t.”
- Words of wisdom from Warren Buffett’s legendary sidekick – “You have to be a lifelong learner to appreciate this stuff. We think of it as a moral duty. Increasing rationality and improving as much as you can no matter your age or experience is a moral duty. Too many people graduate from Wharton today and think they know how to do everything. It’s a considerable mistake.