Saturday, March 24, 2007
- DJIA had its best week in years gaining 370.60, 3.06% to finish out the week at 12,481.01.
- Nasdaq Composite shot up 76.27 points, 3.21% to 2448.93.
- S & P 500 rose 49.16, 3.54% to 1436.11.
- 10-year Treasury yield rose 0.067 percentage points to 4.613%.
- Crude spent much of the week back above $60 rising $2.70 since last Friday, 4.53% to $62.28/bbl.
Sunday, March 18, 2007
- DJIA had another rocky week, falling 165.91, 1.35% to 12,110.41.
- Nasdaq Composite also dipped, dropping 14.89 points, 0.62% to 2372.66.
- S & P 500 lost 15.90 points, 1.13% to 1386.95.
- 10-year Treasury yield fell 0.045 percentage points to 4.546%.
- Crude oil fell back below $60, losing $2.94/bbl last week, 4.90% to $57.11.
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Sunday, March 11, 2007
"I simply judge a wine by pouring a glass and drinking it. If I feel like another glass and have a desire for it, to me it's a good wine.Ernest Gallo, who founded the Gallo wine empire with his brother Julio, died Tuesday at the age of 97. Julio died in an auto accident in 1993.
Ernest Gallo was born on March 18, 1909, to Giuseppe Gallo, known as Joseph, and Assunta Bianco Gallo, who was called Susie, in Jackson, California. In the 1920s the couple bought a farm near Modesto and began to grow grapes. But with Prohibition and then the Great Depression the couple became saddled with an unproductive farm and heavy debt. On the morning of June 21, 1933, in the kitchen of the farmhouse, Joseph Gallo shot and killed his wife and then himself, leaving three sons, Ernest, Julio, and their younger brother, Joseph, then 12.
With a little money left by their dead parents and a loan from Ernest's mother-in-law they rented a shed in Modesto. They knew nothing about making wine and, as legend tells it, had nothing more than a pamphlet from the Modesto Public Library to explain the trade. The Gallo Winery began with just $5,900 in capital.
Business was good for the brothers but it really took off in 1957 with the introduction of Thunderbird. Gallo has been criticized for exploiting the ethnic "misery market" with this citrus-flavored, fortified wine but it's reported that the brothers sold 32 million gallons of Thunderbird in it's first year.
The Gallos, realizing they could not sustain their winery on cheap products, moved up-market and began to produce better wines. Business flourished.
From the New York Times:
And the company, entirely family controlled, was indeed large. Industry analysts estimate that Gallo produces some 80 million cases of wine a year, which is about 220,000 cases or 2.64 million bottles every day. The company reportedly owns 10,000 acres of vineyards in California and buys grapes from hundreds of independent growers.
According to Forbes magazine, Gallo had sales of about $980 million in 2005 with a net profit of $44 million. In 2006, according to Forbes, Ernest Gallo was No. 283 on its list of the 400 richest Americans, with an estimated net worth of $1.2 billion.
- DJIA regained 162.22 points this week, up 1.34% to 12,276.32.
- Nasdaq Composite also made up some of the previous week's losses, up 19.55 points, 0.83% to 2387.55.
- S & P 500 gained 15.68 points, 1.13% to 1402.85.
- 10-year Treasury yield rose 0.076 percentage points to 4.591%
- Crude oil slipped back$1.59, 2.58% to $60.05.
Wednesday, March 07, 2007
Warning, you're being hypnotized: Wall Street insiders, bankers, brokers, advisers and their buddies want you to pile up assets. Why? Not for your own good, but because the more securities you own, the more money they make in fees! Get it?Farrell seems to think that your pension, Social Security and perhaps a part-time job are all you'll need in retirement.
Focus on income: Pensions, Social Security, IRAs, and a new career, business or some part-time work. And remember, savvy families also quietly build wealth in home equity. Pay off the mortgage, live debt-free. Downsize. Maybe cut costs moving to a cheaper region. Go for a reverse mortgage. Be creative. Add up these pieces of income and you'll see how to reach whatever you need to live comfortably in retirement.That's all just fine Paul, as long as you neglect the fact that the defined benefit plan has gone the way of the ten-cent cup of coffee and anyone who has read a newspaper in the last decade has serious questions about Social Security's sustainability. Besides, being a greeter at Wal-Mart is not part of my retirement plan.
Who wants to take their chances on Farrell's advice? Anyone?
Note: Mr. Farrell (Dr. Farrell, actually) has a law degree and a PhD in psychology--proof that a good education doesn't necessarily make you smart.
Saturday, March 03, 2007
- DJIA shed 533.38 points, 4.22% and finished Friday at 12,114.10. Just a little painful.
- Nasdaq Composite lost 147.10, or 5.85% to close the week at 2368.00
- S & P 500 dropped 64.12, 4.41% and stands at 1387.17.
- 10-year Treasury yield fell 0.163 percentage points to 4.515%
- Crude oil was up half a buck, .82% to $61.64.
Thursday, March 01, 2007
By the end of the year, there is the possibility, but not the probability of the U.S. moving into recession.Gee thanks, Al. Why didn't you say that on Monday?