Sunday, July 9, 2017

Articles of interest

Harvest Investor writes about trends in agricultural productivity and their likely effect on the farm economy.

George Dimitroff describes how the 1990 recession and September 11, 2001 attack affected aircraft prices.

The Financial Post writes that Nortel Networks' multi-year bankruptcy has produced $2 billion of legal and professional fees compared to a remaining estate of $7.3 billion.

Business models
The Private Investment Brief discusses why middlemen often thrive and resist dis-intermediation.

Central banks
Vienna Capitalist argues that, contrary to popular perception, quantitative easing and negative interest rates are deflationary.

A guest commenter at Credit Bubble Stocks discusses the competing incentives that central banks have to pursue deflationary or hyperinflationary policies during economic crises.

The Wall Street Journal claims that "[as with] steel and aluminum before, Chinese oil refining overcapacity is spilling into global markets and depressing profits."

Wide Moat Investing writes that Joe Papa's compensation as CEO of Valeant is much lower than news reports have suggested.

Vili Lehdonvirta argues that bitcoin is flawed and overhyped.

The Economy
Paul Kasriel argues that slowing credit growth, in conjunction with the Federal Reserve's tightening of monetary policy, is a risk to the American economy and stock market. See also Kasriel's follow-up post discussing the relative importance of commercial and industrial loan growth versus total growth of bank credit.

Foreign investing
Back of the Envelope describes the investment merits of Apetit, a Finnish food conglomerate and potential turnaround.

Dividend Growth Investor enumerates the risks of international investing and provides an interesting overview of Russia's stock market in the decades before the Communist takeover.

Fritz Capital writes about risks to the Chinese banking system in general and Bank of Jinzhou in particular.

Investing Sidekick makes the case for Cambria Automobiles, a cheap car dealer in the United Kingdom.

Variant Perception warns about China's declining credit growth.

Paul Clikeman describes the careers of Ivar Kreuger and Philip Musica, two prominent Depression-era fraudsters.

Flexport describes California's economic development during and after the 1848 gold rush. One of the biggest beneficiaries was actually outside California: A railroad built across the Isthmus of Panama to facilitate trade between California and the Eastern United States became profitable before construction was finished and was temporarily the highest-valued company on the New York Stock Exchange. h/t Danton Qu.

Fortune provides a behind-the-scenes look at Microsoft's initial public offering.

Quartz writes about Société des Moulins de Bazacle, the world's first joint-stock company.

Jason Zweig reprints a speech that Ben Graham gave in 1963.

Talking to, John Arnold describes his trading strategy and explains why he doesn't use technical analysis.

Jim Chanos discusses some of the political risks to capitalism, corporate profits, and the stock market.

Graham & Doddsville interviews William von Mueffling and Sam Zell in its Winter 2012 edition.

Jack Schwager summarizes the key ideas of his Market Wizards series of interview books.

Texas Monthly exposes the judicial corruption that facilitated Pennzoil's successful lawsuit against Texaco in the 1980s.

The Wall Street Journal describes Glencore's influence over zinc prices.

Money laundering
Bloomberg describes how art lending can be used to launder money.

Oil and gas
Debtwire asserts that plugging and abandonment liabilities are an underappreciated risk for oil and gas companies operating in the Gulf of Mexico.

Phil Flynn argues that the Energy Information Administration has overstated inventories of crude oil in the United States.

KUT FM describes how the Texas Railroad Commission influenced OPEC.

The Guardian exposes the scam known as scientific publishing.

Institutional Investor profiles Jim Simons and Renaissance Technologies (from 2000).

Bloomberg profiles the principals of TGS, a lesser-known quantitative fund that rivals Renaissance in profitability.

Real Estate
The Wall Street Journal describes how the DiLorenzo family squandered one of New York City's largest real-estate fortunes in a generation.

Fritz Capital describes the incentives that Wall Street analysts face and how they can influence securities prices.

Morgan Housel discusses how personal experience can lead investors to overestimate or underestimate risks.

Jan Woeltjen writes that, contrary to what one might expect, statistically cheap stocks that score poorly on measures of business quality have outperformed better-quality value stocks.

Nicholas Vardy argues that investing will "never see another Warren Buffett or George Soros" because increasing competition among an increasing number of sophisticated professional investors limits the ability of any one investor to rise above the crowd.

David Merkel pens a critical review of Thomas Phelps's 100 to 1 in the Stock Market.

Skift chronicles Travelocity's decline from leading online travel agent to also-ran.

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