Thursday, January 31, 2008

Gena Abraham......

Don't know her, never met her. Probably holding more influence over Georgia today then even our "prayin n fishin" Governor. It's about time and a decade overdue.

Getting the likes of Linnenkohl and cronies out of the DOT and sitting Gena Abraham in the top chair is the single greatest thing the Governor has accomplished. Bar none. The good old boys are alive and well under the Golden Dome, being fattened and wined by the lobbyists of old but the road building contingent will have a toughter time of it. And for that, it's about time.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Hard to fathom but it's the Wall Street way.......

A company can report record profits and forecast strong future results and lose 30% or 40% of its value in minutes, but a house can sit for months with virtually no buyers and lose hardly any of its perceived "value" because it has a roof, a toilet, a garage and a plug-in for the flat screen.

Sandhill Cranes...........

It was a mile or two north of Pikeville, TN this morning. The sky was alive. Flock after flock of cranes dropping out of the deep blue sky. Temperatures were in the mid-20's, clear skies after a rough night of wind. Thousands of cranes moving in a mass of legs and feathers on an open field, dropping in with cupped wings like specks out of the sky. Birds seemingly coming from a mile high from all directions, non-stop.

The vehicle traffic roared on by, most oblivous to this spectacle, lives busy with other things. Spring isn't far off, the countless pairs staying close together on the ground, feathers being "ruffled" with some bickering and some dancing.

Just another priceless morning in Tennessee.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Atlanta's NHL All-Star game..........

Wow, what a night. From the Atlanta Boy's Choir belting out our National Anthem to a Canadian songster crooning ""Oh Canada" it started off fast. What a display of power, speed, stick-handling, goal-tending, shooting, skating and teamwork. Truly the way hockey might be played someday. I never saw a solid "check" and for the sixth All-Star game running, not a penalty was called.

My professional hockey exposure started back in the late 70's, a fraternity brother, Jeff Bruch got me up close and personal to the Minnesota North Stars. They skated faster and hit harder than I had ever imagined. Today's giants on ice are uncanny with the accuracy and shooting ability.

It was a great night for the city, the players and fans. What a spectacle of athleticism it was.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Derivatives & Dilution..............

The next big shoe to drop in America's quagmire of greed will probably be in the clearing of derivatives trades.

If you are a regulator Citi would be the likely place to look first.

Isn't anyone out there complaining about the $37,000,000,000 of American financial companies that foreigners have bought recently? Common shareholders don't seem to complain about their dilution anymore, what's up with that?

Maybe they should take a lesson from Mr. Real Estate himself, Sam Zell on how not to get diluted.

Beware the BEAR.......

72 hours ago, Russia delivered its fifth shipment of fuel for Iran's first nuclear power plant at Bushehr. This delivery brings the nuclear fuel supplied by Moscow to 55 tons, or tw-thirds of the total order of 82 tons.

The Cold War is not over. We need to talk less softly with Russia and carry a bigger stick. Perhaps you might remember that in November when you walk into your voting booth.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

How to clean up Wall Street ....

Send the top execs to jail for 20 years with no parole and you will see how quickly the money makers clean up their act.

Massive losses are easy to find............

Last weekend we walked by the New York offices of SocGen, Societe Generale, France's second-largest bank by market capitalization The bank is reporting a trading loss so huge that one analyst actually said that, at first, he thought it was some kind of “joke.” With $7.1 billion soundly wiped out (more than the $6.6 billion lost by Amaranth in 2006) the bank says its woes are stemming less from the subprime mess and more from the activities of one unidentified trader it’s now accusing of fraud. Never mind how any trader could have kept a losing position that size so well hidden.

The egregious compensation paid to these traders who play with OPM (for those of you in Mandaree that is Other People's Money) or with the house account and take large unhedged risks are in need of therapy/jail time/thrown out of the securities business. Or are the execs in charge of overseeing these thugs to blame? Of course they are, but don't ask Stan or John or Warren if they were at fault. The lack of risk control and transparency is just so hard to fathom but then again it's not. There's too much money to be made at the top to not allow the gigangic prop profits that can be booked (or lost).

And the derivates debacle has only gotten a good head of steam.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

11 Wall Street...........

This past weekend the Parisian family went to Ground Zero, walked to Trinity church and said a prayer and then strolled down to the corner of Wall and Broad Street to take pictures in front of the New York Stock Exchange.

It is important in this stock market down-draft that we not lose perspective.

It will take some time to cure the ills in the economy. Stimulus packages aside, lower rates aren't a cure-all. Inflation is alive and well.

Don't lose sight of the big picture. Stock ownership solves long-term financial problems. Bears are in control and seem to have the upper hand in the feeding frenzy at the NYSE. This too shall pass. It always has, always will. In your lifetime and mine.

Stock market got you down today??

Please, shut off CNBC on your cable channel. I hope someday CNBC will be required by law to flash on the TV screen a graphic that says “Nothing that happens in the market in the next 30 days will matter in 10 or 15 years”.

A fast, speedy, quick.......

resolution to this market chaos isn't on the agenda today, this week or this month. The housing problem will get better in 2009. It isn't complicated. The excesses need to get worked out of the system. It will take some time.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Stimulus package.........

Giving away tax payer money (yes, for those of you in Mandaree it IS taxpayer money) to STIMULATE the economy does nothing to eradicate the real problems facing the mortage/credit crunch. It's the liars, cheats and thieves who lied on their mortgage applications about their finances and now want to be bailed out of a mortage they should never have had in the first place. Frankly I am tired of having my tax dollars given away to liars and fraudsters.

The enemy is within.

Saving the economy.........

Hearing the presidential hopefuls expound on how they are going to "save" the economy is some of the best political satire I've had since Monica's blue dress surfaced.

Success............

John Paulson. Lucky? One-hit wonder? Naw, some luck, alot of hard work, alot of risk and tremendous success. Only in America. Beating Wall Street at their own game.

Mitt is claiming victory in Michigan, Obama claiming "change" is afoot, Hillary talking about spending more taxpayer money bailing out the fine Americans who are having mortage issues, 70% of whom are said to have LIED on their mortgage applications. Is anyone talking about social security reform, criminal immigration, trade imbalances, tax code reform? Nope, just the usual, jobs, healthcare and the environment.

Here's my cure for American healthcare, listen up. Let every doctor prescribe TWO pair of good walking shoes to every American who they see in 2008 and tell them they must walk 1 or 2 miles every day and pick up litter in the "environment".

That would cure the vast majority of them health-wise.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

John Paulson

My hat's off to you and your team. Congratulations on ripping Wall Street for 590% and 350% returns in your two hedge funds last year.

It took conviction and staying power and lunching with Mr. Greenspan won't come cheap. Wow.

OBAMA...............

When you hear the upstart talk about "change" the first thing you should ask yourself (or him) is whether he is talking about downsizing or increasing government's power.

Like "insider" trading, you are either on the "inside" or the "outside".

He is on the "inside".

Question answered.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Irony..............

The other day a female track sprint star was sentenced to jail for 6 months for lying to federal prosecutors.

Imagine if members of Congress or United States Senators were jailed for lying to the American people about fraudulent and wasteful spending of billions of OUR tax dollars.

Friday, January 11, 2008

A great analogy..........

In a news conference Deanna Favre announced she will be the starting QB for the Packers this coming Sunday. She claimed she is qualified to be starting QB because she has spent the past 16 years married to Brett while he played QB for the Packers. Because of this she understands how to pick up a corner blitz and knows the terminology of the Packers offense. A poll of Packers fans shows that 50% of those polled supported the move.

Does this sound idiotic and unbelievable to you?

Hillary Clinton makes the same claims as to why she is qualified to be President and 50% of Democrats polled agreed. God help us.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Expensive versus Cheap..........

Crude oil is only 15 cents a cup. Compare that to your latest Starbucks buzz!

Beware, Danger Ahead..............

Your financial health is at risk when the CEO of your biggest stock position spends a majority of his time making Wall Street "feel good" about his company.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Another CEO ripping off shareholders..........

Qwest's amended employment agreements were recently voted "The 2007 Footnote of the Year" by blog readers. The amendment allows the CEO's daughter to use the corporate jet to commute to high school from Denver to California. As the Rocky Mountain News reported, the stepdaughter attends high school in California and Qwest is based in Denver.

"The amendment reflects a great appreciation for his family situation as his daughter wraps up her current schooling in California," the Qwest spokesman said. Assuming normal charter rates for the Falcon 2000, this could be up to $1 million extra in school fees that the shareholders of Qwest are contributing to the general welfare.

Enjoy some humor...........

Geno was a single guy living at home with his father and working in the family business.

When he found out he was going to inherit a fortune when his sickly father died, he decided he needed a wife with which to share his fortune.

One evening at an investment meeting he spotted the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. Her natural beauty took his breath away. 'I may look like just an ordinary man,' he said to her, 'but in just a few years, my father will die, and I'll inherit 20 million dollars.'

Impressed, the woman obtained his business card and three days later she became his stepmother.

Women are so much better at estate planning than men.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Worth every second of your time..................

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xyUX6wV1lBQ

CPST.............

In 2003, the most massive blackout to hit the U.S. electric power grid plunged much of the Northeast, Midwest, and even parts of Canada into darkness. While it may have made for some cozy times -- despite studies that showed no resultant baby boom nine months later -- businesses that relied upon electricity were left in the dark like everyone else. Total reliance on the grid has inspired many businesses to seek alternative energy sources, including Capstone Turbine.

This small, 20-year-old company manufactures microturbines that produce power on-site, either in conjunction with the grid or as a stand-alone source of power. Capstone's small, 30-kilowatt microturbines can produce enough electricity to power a convenience store. The company also makes several large models, and it recently unveiled the first megawatt microturbine.

Because the turbines can run on a variety of fuels, they can be a low-emission form of energy production. And they need little maintenance, because they require no lubrication. Since its microturbines can also be used in alternative-fuel cars, the company may have a much larger market than just commercial use.

New York City just released regulations for installing microturbines in buildings. With an estimated 79% of greenhouse gases in New York emanating from buildings, the rules -- which Capstone helped the city's task force develop -- might provide additional impetus for sales. Along with the company's "near profitability," that could make 2008 an interesting year for the company.

I like their recent announcement to collaborate with NTT DoComo in powering cell tower sites.

BCS games.......

Over-hyped. Ohio State with an 0-9 record against SEC teams might go to the drawing board. They were out-coached, out-played and out-hustled.

The vaunted linebacker corps at Ohio State didn't show up. In fact, they were atrocious.

Fun to see GEICO and Nationwide toss some nice commercials into the ALLSTATE game.

College football only gets bigger and the coaches are making out like bank robbers with the increased salaries. Imagine if that much interest actually went into getting football teams college degrees.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Chippewa Partners Guiding Principles

The stock market is a facility for the exchange of shares. Just like markets for cell phones, oil or fur, it is driven by supply and demand. Never forget that stock prices are set “at-the-margin”, that is, by the selling pressure or buying interest at an electronic or physical location. Share prices are not set by any kind of fundamental valuation formula or by the talking heads on CNBC. Friends of our firm who work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange understand fear and greed better than most investors but they can’t tell the difference between preferred stock and livestock. Their only concern is commission flow.

As an economist by training, I understand that contrary to what I was taught, supply and demand in the stock market is seldom in equilibrium. Price and value are separate and the market is not always efficient but it is very effective.

Securities markets are fundamental to the capital formation process in a free economy. They enable businesses to raise capital by offering shares to investors. Companies then use that capital to invest in technology, new equipment and employees that will produce goods and services to create more jobs in our communities.

Today, capitalism is the organizing principle for most of the human activity on the globe, for no one can stop capitalism. I feel the 21st century started in 1989 when the Berlin Wall came down. The opportunities for success are greater now than ever before and for the first time in the history of the world all the people who are poor, know that they are poor.

The stock market doesn’t care who you are, what color your skin is, where you went to school and it doesn’t care where you came from. Here are some reasons why the stock market will continue to go up much like it has during your lifetime.

1. America has the greatest number of entrepreneurial managed companies.
2. We have the leading military in the world.
3. We have the leading technology in the world both in hardware and software.
4. We have the leading medical technology in the world.
5. We have the leading political system in the world.
6. We have 25 times more Nobel Prize winners than any other country.
7. We create more jobs than Japan and Europe together.
8. We have 11,000 companies in the U.S. that trade under good accounting rules.
9. Americans have the freedom to accumulate wealth and extract out of life what it is they want.

The stock market is a funny place. It is the only business in the world where when things are on sale, people don’t want to buy. The greatest single enemy of long term investment success is not ignorance, it is fear. Fear leads to panic and panic breeds the inability to distinguish between temporary declines and permanent losses. When investors panic they don’t discriminate. Investors are more predicable when they’re scared and it makes it easier for those of us who take advantage of that indiscriminate selling.

All stock market declines have been temporary in my lifetime, and all advances have been permanent. The key to investment success is not found in intellectual babble such as standard deviations, quantitative analysis or chaos theory. Successful investing in the stock market is about time in the market. The single greatest thing you can have going for you is time because no on can successfully forecast interest rates over the long term and no one can forecast market gyrations. Long term the market always goes up.

Why do so many people lose in the stock market? I don’t mean to be critical, a tenant I try to live with is don’t criticize until you have walked a mile in someone’s moccasins. Investors lose because they don’t make good trading decisions, they fail because they don’t understand the market, they don’t control their risk, they don’t understand themselves, they don’t use the right tools, they get advice from brokers whose motivation is to generate commissions and they fail because they sell-out at the bottom of temporary market declines. Is it any wonder that the average American spends more time planning their vacation than they do planning for their retirement?

Another reason that investors are losing the investing game is because they have bought into what I call the Sesame Street School of selecting mutual funds. Journalists and many in the brokerage community tout the mantra of counting the number of stars in ranking mutual funds, thinking, you will enjoy superior investment results with owning so many stars next to the name of your mutual fund.

You see, unaided, most people invest through a rear-view mirror. They buy mutual funds after they’ve gone up substantially. Brokers sell investors the hottest fund, in the hottest sector, the one that has the most stars next to its listing in Money magazine. Then what happens? You know the drill. They turn cold. In fairly short order, a perfectly normal market correction comes along and the cycle comes to an end. Investing like that is like enlisting in the Taliban on September 11, 2001. On that day you are joining the proudest fighting force in the world. Yes, your outfit just pulled off one of the greatest disasters of all time. But you know what? You are toast. Your obituary is written.

When you invest like that, the chances of selling out at the very bottom of the cycle, being influenced by negative journalism is very high.

I want to make one point very clear. Pay attention. At the end of an investor’s life, less than 5% of total lifetime return will come from what the investments did versus other investments. The other 95% will come from how the investor behaved. I have a firm belief that there is no relationship between investment performance and investor performance.

Stock market success is a function of two things: first, recognition that the markets will go down and sometimes go down a lot and two: preparation to regard those declines as either non-events or buying opportunities, and never as an occasion to sell in a panic.

With all certainty, the most boring and mediocre stock fund in your portfolio, the one that you hold onto during a vicious and severe bear market is infinitely better than that world-class stock fund that you sell out of at the bottom of a temporary decline.

Now, if your serious retirement portfolio is making you feel uneasy and you feel it needs professional, unbiased attention, let’s talk for a moment on what you might do.

The first thing you should do would be to call us, the investment firm of Chippewa Partners.

The second thing would be to shut off CNBC. I hope someday CNBC will be required by law to flash on the TV screen a graphic that says “Nothing that happens in the market in the next 30 days will matter in 10 or 15 years”.

The next thing you might want to do is fire your stockbroker. Wall Street investment firms only care if they can sell stocks, not what happens to investors. They are not paid to make clients money and are not fiduciaries like Chippewa Partners. A few years ago a study was done by a firm out of Chicago. They looked at around 150 families each having at least $100 million in assets. There were some common denominators in the group, the obvious being money can’t buy happiness, the second was that they all thought they should be able to get 8% returns with no risk and they expected at least 20-25% returns!

What they did do was put a hefty premium on unbiased, objective investment advice from investment managers like Chippewa Partners. By comparison, bankers and stockbrokers were relied on by no more than 4% of the group or 6 out of 150.

If you think you are getting sound advice from a brokerage firm or worse yet, a bank, you better think long and hard. I don’t have the time to tell you horror stories. Just never forget, there is significant potential for conflicts-of-interest in commissions. If you have a question on what you are paying a broker, give us a call. We love to show prospective clients the hidden fees. A couple times a year as my schedule permitted I worked for the New York Stock Exchange and the NASD as an arbitrator. I arbitrated for investors who sued brokers and brokerage firms. It was a demanding task. I admit, the longer I was at it, the more fearful I was of Wall Street firms as well as the legions of attorneys who don’t understand securities laws.

A question that we always ask prospective clients is who is being compensated to look out for your hard-earned money? Investors that confuse a sales pitch that generates a broker’s income with impartial investment advice continually amaze me. Do you think Tiger Woods uses a stockbroker who is trained and paid to sell investments or an investment management firm that is hired to increase his net worth and protect his assets?

The answer is easy. He has competent, unbiased investment managers. He hires an investment management firm to manage his assets. And yes, you probably should too.

You also might want to stop reading the financial press. Yes, I read three papers every morning before the average guy gets out of bed, but journalism always gets it wrong. It has a relentless bias to the negative. I call it financial pornography. Reporters never report my reasons the stock market is headed up in our lifetime and it isn’t the job of journalists to make people great investors. It’s their job to make people come back for more journalism.

Recognize that what distinguishes Chippewa Partners is not only our assignment to manage investments, but an important means for allowing our valued clients to do the things that are most important to them. Like you, our plans, hopes and dreams inspire us every day and we are grateful for the opportunity to help our clients with their goals and to improve their lives.

We believe it is a privilege to work for our clients. At Chippewa Partners we are about doing the right things, the right way, for the right reasons for clients who don’t have the time, talent or training to manage a serious investment portfolio. Clients know the serious money we manage for them is serious business. Managing money for busy people with other things to think about deserves serious attention. Our expertise and track record developed over 25 years, balances financial acumen and absolute integrity with dedicated professionalism. We invite your inquiry.

Friday, January 04, 2008

a simple billion.................

The next time you hear a politician use the
word "billion" in a casual manner, think about
whether you want the "politicians" spending
YOUR tax money.
A billion is a difficult number to comprehend,
but one advertising agency did a good job of
putting that figure into some perspective in
one of its releases.
A. A billion seconds ago it was 1959.
B. A billion minutes ago Jesus was alive.
C. A billion hours ago our ancestors were
living in the Stone Age.
D. A billion days ago no-one walked on the earth on two feet.
E. A billion dollars ago was only 8 hours and
20 minutes, at the rate our government is spending it.

While this thought is still fresh in our brain, let's take a look at New Orleans It's amazing what you can learn with some simple division . .

Louisiana Senator, Mary Landrieu , is presently asking the Congress for $250 BILLION to rebuild New Orleans. Interesting number, what does it mean?

A. Well, if you are one of 484,674 residents of
New Orleans (every man, woman, child), you
each get $516,528.
B. Or, if you have one of the 188,251 homes in
New Orleans , your home gets $1,329,787.
C. Or, if you are a family of four, your family
gets $2,066,012.
Washington, D.C .. HELLO!!! ... Are all your calculators broken??

Iowa speaks........

Iowa spoke.

The smell and stench coming from inside the Beltway wafted across the Iowa landscape loud and clear. The good people who harvest corn and raise bacon let it be known they are tired of the politics-as-usual Washington crowd.

Watching these presidential hopefuls utter sound bite after sound bite makes for great comedy. Notice not a one of them will address the issues that will affect my children, namely social security reform, criminal immigration or tax reform to name just a couple. They all want to talk education, jobs and the environment.

Government is not the solution boys and girls. Government jobs have little incentive and education like the post office should be privatized.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Bill Gross.......

I've never met him. Probably a fun guy to talk stamps with.

Listening to him try to talk down long mortgage rates today on CNBC was excellent entertainment. For a rich guy, he's got his funds in a pickle. Fortunately, his viewers on CNBC can't dictate rates. The free market is doing a good job of cleaning up the excess greed and idiocy of allowing every Tom, Dick and Bill to get a mortgage.

Rocking...............

If you are one of the many Americans sitting around waiting and worrying for the recession to "hit" in 2008, please, prolong your life. Stop worrying.

The recession is here, it's now and it's all you are going to get.

I'm in the camp that the market is higher at the end of 2008.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

2008 is here..............

The trading year has started with a yawn. Oil pushing par today, Wall Street trying to jettison the bloated payrolls, CNBC bringing more of the same.

I hope your 2007 was as good as mine.

Native American Advisors CHIPPEWA PARTNERS

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CHIPPEWA PARTNERS, Native American Advisors, Inc. is a Registered Investment Advisor, founded by Dean Thomas Parisian in 1995. The firm is a manager to an exclusive clientele and is closed to new clients. As a Registered Investment Advisor, our expertise developed over 35 years balances experience, integrity and tremendous work ethic. Dean Parisian is a member at the White Earth Reservation of the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe, a former NYSE and FINRA arbitrator and trader who began his career with Kidder Peabody and later worked for Drexel Burnham Lambert in LaJolla, CA. His philanthropic interest is in Native American education and he's endowed a significant scholarship for Native Americans at the University of Minnesota. His greatest accomplishment includes raising two sons and 26 years of marriage. The Parisian family enjoys outdoor pursuits at Pamelot, their farm in Tennessee and at the Ghost Ranch, their ranch on the Yellowstone River in Montana. For media requests contact the firm via email: ChippewaPartners (at) gmail dot com, on Twitter: @DeanParisian. Global 404-202-8173