Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Of Falling Knives

This isn't a brag. I suck at picking stocks.

I watch Cramer for advice, and he's great, but he gives way too many recommendations for someone with my limited means to follow them all. Which means I have to use my own judgement deciding which ones to pursue, and that's where the problem comes in.

Somehow, I routinely jump all over Marvell while taking a pass on Apple and Allegheny Tech.

But rarely, very rarely, I do get one right. And that calls for a little self-congratulation.

Here's what the chart of Goldman Sachs looked like when I bought it*:

That's a falling knife if I've ever seen one. I don't make a habit of trying to catch them, but I figured this was a good time to start a position. I'd buy a few shares, wait for the stock to go down a few points, then buy some more...repeat this a handful of times and eventually when the stock starts to move up again, I'd have a low averaged cost basis.

But something funny happened...the stock didn't continue to go down. In fact, it went practically straight back up, 80 points up. Here's what the Goldman chart looks like now, with my entry point of $165 marked in red:

I haven't nailed a bottom in a stock like that, well...ever. That chart is pretty fucking sexy. It's not Monica Belluci sexy, but it's definitely a close second.

Bought a little Procter today on the same premise...planning to scale into the stock as it slides. Who knows? Maybe lightning will strike twice.

*As you can tell, that's just a current chart of GS that I chopped off at the date of purchase, not an actual chart from that time. And yeah, my photoshop skills suck.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

You go, Donald

Donald Trump was on the Howard Stern Show again this morning, and his interview provided a treasure trove of fantastic quotes. Here are some of the highlights, as I remember them:

  • He called Bush the "worst president in history", who doesn't know what's going on around him, and said "he can't have much of an IQ, probably no IQ."

  • He anointed Elizabeth Hasselbeck (sp?) from the View as the "dumbest person on television."

  • He said Mark Cuban is "a loser who lives in one of my buildings in New York. I use him as an example when I give speeches...I say if Mark Cuban can make money, anyone can make money."

  • More insults of Rosie O'Donnell, of course.

I love how most celebrities dance around questions, careful to avoid anything that could be construed as insensitive, and yet Mr. Trump is untouched by the ramificiations of his blatant honesty.

Good for him. I'm giddy with joy to see someone who's fantastically rich, a self-made man with no guilt about his wealth, a true capitalist, who isn't afraid to say what he really thinks about the face of the Republican Party. Too many of the ultra-rich are willing to look past Bush's idiocy, out of gratitude for his tax cuts.

One interesting observation he made about the upcoming election (and I'm paraphrasing liberally, since my recollection is far from perfect:)

It will come down to Rudy and Hillary. They are both good friends of mine, both really intelligent people, and both will be good for business.

I have to admit, that made me feel just a little bit better. Too bad more people in this country can't look past their parents' party to see the actual candidates, and make judgements based on the merits of the individual instead of the political machine that's adopted them.