Tag Archive | fixed income

Oh How I Wish Janet Yellen Was On A Testosterone Boosting Regime.

dowsep182015
.Anura Guruge December 2014 thumbnail

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by Anura Guruge


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DO NOT ENLARGE this image.

Don’t get me wrong, I like Janet Yellen and was totally supportive of her replacing Dear Ben as the Federal Reserve Chairperson. What is there not to like about her?

BUT after yesterday’s momentous decision by the Fed’s NOT to raise the Fed Interest Rate I just wish she had more testosterone in her system. What we saw yesterday is the, rightly, much vaunted trait of females not to be as aggressive, confrontational and ‘in your face’. BUT in this case that is really what we needed. We needed Janet to be a Margaret Thatcher or my Aunty Bandaranaike — strong female leaders that were willing to make hard decisions.

We need to get this interest rate fiasco out of the way!

To be honest it bothers me NOWT! As somebody with an incurable addiction to option trading I LOVE the market volatility. Large market swings make me smile all day — not that I am not smiling most of the time anyway. I just feel bad for those that just ride the market and watch helpless when their IRA goes down. I just heard on CNBC this morning, bamboo stake up his derrière, “I tell God what to think every morning”, Ken ‘pompous’ Langone, bemoan how the ‘zero’ interest rates are crippling retirees on a ‘fixed income’. I had to laugh. Typical of bloody Langone. Clueless. I am retired BUT I wish my income was ‘fixed’. SMILE. Never understood that expression. “Fixed Income”. If you are salaried aren’t you also on a ‘fixed income’? Well, what can I say?

This interest rate ‘fear’ is such a joke. 0.25% or even 1% Fed interest rates are NOT going to kill anyone. They will, as CNBC correctly points out, NORMALIZE matters — and the markets — and GET one unnecessary Ken Langone like gorilla ‘out of the room’.

So PLEASE Janet go get some shots. Lets raise this damn rate SOON — definitely before Christmas. PLEASE let us NOT go into 2016 with this hanging over the market.

I just do NOT know whether I could tolerate that much FUN!

Janet, I am sure your Health Insurance will cover the costs of the shots. If NOT I will, on behalf of the entire World, gladly pay for them.


BJBHX, Aberdeen (Artio) Global High Income Fund: A Very Depressing Update On A Depressed Fund.


Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.
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by Anura Guruge


Related posts:
1/
BJBHX: sticking it out till 2015 — Nov. 18, 2014.
2/
BJBHX has decent December 2013 — Dec. 23, 2013.
3/ 
Uncontrollable Infatuation With BJBHX — Mar. 9, 2013.
4/
Artio Global High Income Mutual Fund (BJBHX):
>>
I Bailed With Regret – Jan. 3, 2013.

++++ Search ‘BJBHX‘ for other related posts >>>>


bjbhxhhha


BJBHX and, as I have mentioned before,
go back a ‘long’ time
— which I think is getting close to 6 years by now.

bjbhxskijump

BJBHX — the last bloody month.

Yes, during those years BJBHX has driven me to distraction and back a number of times, but I have always gone back. Up until ‘recently’ it always found a way to reward those that stuck with them.

But the last month, since my last update, has been the month from hell. The NAV has been on a steady downward drift. There hasn’t been a single up day in weeks. It is sad and scary. What makes it even worse is that over the last few months Aberdeen has been trying to aggressively push BJBHX has a great high income option in the new Janet Yellen, no-QE but low interest rates climate. See this page and their propaganda. I feel bad for anybody who took the bait in the last month or so. It would have been nothing short of a very bloody bloodbath. Yes, yes, yes. Much of it has to do with the precipitous decline in oil prices and with the hammering taken by junk bonds issued by all the oil companies. But Greg Hopper, the Fund Manager, in his November fund commentary, after blaming the poor performance in October on oil bonds said he had a handle on it. Well his grip must have slipped because the NAV sure is slipping like it hit an oil slick.

I called up Aberdeen 4 times on Thurday. Yes, 4 times. The first call was to make sure that Greg Hopper still had a pulse. They weren’t exactly forthcoming but tried to assure me that Hopper was trying to manage the crisis. Maybe this is all too much for him. Time for a change? His recent performance has been abysmal.

I then discovered that they had posted the ACTUAL year end distribution for BJBHX — the one that will be paid on December 23.

We have since discovered that what they posted was last year’s, i.e., for 2013, not 2014!

Well it can get WORSE. That was my second phone call. Hopper MIGHT have to cut back on the distribution in the next week; ex-div is on December 19, Friday week.

So be warned. Actual distribution might be less than estimated. They might even cancel the entire 2014 distribution — given that they do have the right to do that. Remember, Remember, December 2012. This could be another sorry repetition of that. Same story. Fund lost money so no distribution — SORRY, though Hopper walked away with a nice, fat bonus.

The next two phone calls had to do with the SUPPOSED income dividend, ex-date Dec. 29, to be paid December 31. I fear that this will not happen either. Remember, Remember, December 2012. In 2012 there was just one measly $0.03 distribution in December WITHOUT any warning or explanation.

Well, of course, they won’t comment.

Well this year I am giving you a heads up though I sometimes worry that BJBHX no longer has that many customers.

Well I am sorry to be the bearer of such bad news. But at least forewarned is forearmed. I think it is going to become a fairly simple choice come 2015. Either Hopper goes or I go. There is much easier and less painful ways to fritter away your money than entrusting it to BJBHX.

Happy Holidays Hopper. Thanks for nothing.


After-School “The Hour of Code” Today At Alton Central School (ACS), N.H., For Grades 5 – 8, Attended By 9 Students.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by Anura Guruge


Related posts:
0/
‘Hour of Code’ with Frozen.
1/
Google’s ‘Holidays are Made With Code’.
2/
2013 ‘Hour of Code’
3/
‘Common Core’ & ‘Hour of Code’

++++ Search ‘programming‘ & ‘IBM‘ for other related posts >>>>


hofccongblog12

Click to access original from “The Hill”.


minnhocode41

Click to access original from “Star Tribune”.


obamahc1a

Click to access CNet original.


I am not sure whether the fact that only 9 students, total, from Grades 5 to 8 attended this afternoon’s optional, after-school ‘Hour of Code’ initiative was good or bad. Only 1 eighth grader attended, our daughter — because I had told her that attending this was non-negotiable.

I gather that most of the other 8 graders believed that this was a ‘stupid’ event. C’est la vie.

There were probably at least 4 reasons for the belief that it was ‘stupid’ and I was concerned about one of them. The first of these obviously is that to 8 graders most things in life are ‘stupid’. Nothing you can do about that. At that age they know everything.

The second reason, and that is valid, is conflicts with other after-school activities. Only way to have avoided that was to have it during school hours and there may have been rules and regulations against that — especially since Obama and Microsoft (the two primary culprits in the “Common Core” crisis) also have a hand in this.

The third reasons could have been plain ignorance as to what the event was all about. I can believe that. “Hour of Code” by itself doesn’t explain much unless you already have an idea what CODE is all about. I plan to do an informal survey on this the next time I am up and about. Wonder how many kids and parents in Alton actually equate ‘code’ say with Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, video games and GPS. That could have been a problem.

javascriptex

Click to ENLARGE. A little snippet of JavaScript. This could have got 8th graders slightly more engaged.

The fourth reason was the one that I was concerned about. The ‘blocky’-based drag-and-drop ‘programs’ really might have been too simplistic for 8th graders. Obama, as can be seen above, did a bit of good ol’ JavaScript. I think the 8th graders should have been given the chance to learn some procedural code.

BASIC used to be such a great way to teach youngsters the basics of coding. BASIC is available and if I had my way that is what I would have pitched to 8th graders — and YES, I have taught computer programming for money (even to post-graduate students at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU)). So I do know a little bit about this.

Tomorrow Grades 3 & 4 have their turn. I gather more kids have signed up. Teischan is one of them and she has already done probably close to an hour of code on her own.

In the end this is no big deal one way or another. Good opportunity but if kids miss it now they can still learn coding down the road.

I, in 1969, aged 16 started taking my lessons in programming in Britain. First year it was offered. Changed my life. Two years prior I have never even heard the word computer growing up in a poor, third-world country. So yes I am kind of biased about the possible benefits of learning to code.


Next Week, December 8 – 18, 2014, Sees “The Hour of Code” Initiative — Get Your Girls Going With Frozen’s Anna & Elsa On The Ice.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by
Anura Guruge


flappy11Related posts:
1/
Google’s ‘Holidays are Made With Code’.
2/
2013 ‘Hour of Code’
3/
‘Common Core’ & ‘Hour of Code’

++++ Search ‘programming‘ & ‘IBM‘ for other related posts >>>>


frizebcodea1

Click to access.


frozencodeii


Next week, December 8 to 11, is to 2014 “The Code Hour” week. Google, as I covered here, kicked us off with the compelling (and appealing to kids) “The Holidays are Made With Code” note.

Alton Central School (ACS), as they also did last year, is partaking in this year’s event, though (though most likely due to various policy issues) it is an optional, after-school activity rather than something that all the kids will do, for an hour, during normal school time. C’est la vie. As an ex-professional programmer for IBM (with a B. Sc. (Hons.) in Computer Technology from the University of Wales, 1974,  & a M. Sc. (with Distinction) in Computer Science from the University of London, 1979) I am all gung-ho about any and all initiatives that will get kids INTO programming. Programming is a very satisfying and lucrative field. It was my programming skills that gave me a start in my professional life. I sometimes wish I had been content just to be a programmer and done my 30 years at IBM just as progressively more senior programmer and then retired. I would definitely would have been better off financially though would not have been anything close to eventful and exciting as it had been. I wish I had kept up with my programming. I taught programming, at postgraduate level at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU), ten years ago. I taught myself Python a couple of years prior to that — and given my years of FORTRAN VI, COBOL, PL/I, PL/S, POP 2, BASIC and BAL that was a piece of cake. I regret that I never made time to learn any C (of any type) or Java. Actually a few weeks ago I spent a few minutes looking at whether I should learn C++ or C#. Not sure I can justify the time commitment. Be much better if MY kids learned to code. My son did do Python at Wheaton though he hasn’t pursued it further as yet.

I showed Teischan, 8, the Google ‘Christmas lights’ last week. Much to my delight she liked it and created quite a fancy tree. That was encouraging.

I made sure both kids are signed up, at ACS, for the Hour.

Earlier this evening I went looking around seeing what they had that kids could do on the Web prior to their instructions at school. I was overjoyed to see the Frozen Elsa project. Called Teischan over. They had a video. We watched it. It showed you what you could do. She was interested. I set her up, even registered her, on her Toshiba laptop. I told her she could take the laptop to bed and do a few programs. The last I saw she was already on #3. Cracked me up. When I was growing up we didn’t have laptops let alone PCs. But in the early 1970s I started keeping a notepad a pencil by my bed so that I could write code, that came to me via inspiration, when I was in bed — and in those I was noted for spending a lot of time in bed, though only a small part of that was for sleep.

I am GLAD that they did Frozen. That was inspired. Frozen definitely is THE flavor the year of 2014 — at least among girls. Just they have Angry Birds etc. So boys do have an equivalent though it would have been real neat if they had done Disney’s “Planes“.


IF You Own NOIEX, ‘Northern Income Equity Fund’, Be Warned Of A HUGE $3.74/share Distribution On Dec. 18, 2014.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by Anura Guruge


Related posts:
1/
Sticking with BJBHX till 2015
>>Nov. 18, 2014.

2/
BJBHX has decent December 2013 — Dec. 23, 2013.
3/ 
Uncontrollable Infatuation With BJBHX — Mar. 9, 2013.
4/
Artio Global High Income Mutual Fund (BJBHX):
>>
I Bailed With Regret – Jan. 3, 2013.

++++ Search ‘BJBHX‘, ‘IPO‘, ‘stock‘ etc. for other related posts >>>>


noiex1a

Click to ENLARGE. From ‘marketwatch.com’.


Doing financial research, as with that of research papal history, is one of my many hobbies. Come November of each year I like to poke around trying to find ‘unusual’ distributions since knowledge of such ‘windfalls’ could come in handy — as was the case in 2012 when we saw a ton of ‘Special Dividends‘, e.g., $5.15 by AOL, $7.00 by COST etc. Well depending on your outlook (or more to the point your tax liability) 2014 could end up being one heck of a year for year end, Cap. Gain distributions. Everywhere I look, and I do go looking in quite a few places, all I am seeing are above average numbers — in general quite a bit up from those of 2013.

But, what I saw for NOIEX startled me. If you follow this stuff you will know that they all claim that the numbers are estimates made in October, most opting for a date around October 17.

The first number I saw for NOIEX, in early November, was $3.97731. That is $3.97 (nearly $4) PER share. That is a LOT per share especially when the 2013 distribution was $0.56. That is a full 7x increase. Me being who I am, I called up Northern Trust and asked them whether it was typo. The person I spoke to had no idea. I find that a lot. Most of the reps have no detailed understanding of the various funds. I bookmarked the page and kept an eye on it. Last week they issued a new set of estimates the NOIEX number had fallen to $3.74. I spoke with Northern Trust yesterday and today to get a better handle on it. This morning I got an Indian gentleman. Given their usual tact his first words to me was that this must be a mistake. I agreed. But, he went and checked. He even called me back, to my surprise, a few hours later. Yes, it looks like $3.74 THOUGH this, even though we are only two weeks away, is still an estimate. The Fund Manager could end up only dolling out $0.37.

But, IF they do distribute $3.74 per share as is now stated that could be interesting and problematic. You could end up owing a fairly large chunk of tax on it. BUT worst still the NAV WILL DROP, and I have had that confirmed, by that $3.74. Yes, market conditions on the day will factor in, but right now, $3.74 is baked into today’s $16.70 NAV of NOIEX. With the way this market seems to be going NOIEX could be at $17.00 on December 16. Then the next day, ex-Div, the NAV will have $3.74 taken out. So barring market moves which could either increase or decrease the NAV, it will fall to $13.26. YES, you got the dividend and the number of shares you own stay the same but that will be a shock when you see that NAV plummet.

So just a heads up. Don’t take my word. IF you own NOIEX go look it up. Call them up.

IF you don’t want that huge dividend, with its tax implications, you can, of course, wait until Dec. 15 and sell all your shares and then deal purely in capital gains/capital loss.

In comparison (or contrast) BJBHX, which is currently at $10.25, has an estimated year end distribution of $0.2871 (compared to last year’s $0.11). The Yacktman Fund is giving out a full dollar per share compared to $0.67 last year. Told ya. 


BlackRock’s ‘Global Opportunities Equity Trust’ (BOE) Has Become A BlackHole.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by Anura Guruge


Related posts:
1/
Sticking with BJBHX till 2015
>>Nov. 18, 2014.

2/
BJBHX has decent December 2013 — Dec. 23, 2013.
3/ 
Uncontrollable Infatuation With BJBHX — Mar. 9, 2013.
4/
Artio Global High Income Mutual Fund (BJBHX):
>>
I Bailed With Regret – Jan. 3, 2013.

++++ Search ‘BJBHX‘, ‘IPO‘, ‘stock‘ etc. for other related posts >>>>


boeblackhole

Click to ENLARGE. From ‘marketwatch.com’.

boertncap1a

Click to ENLARGE. From Fidelity.


Once we knew, for sure-sure, that the Fed was going to put an end to QE in October BOE, on paper, looked like a good play for some decent ‘high yield’ (in addition to the likes of BJBHX etc.) until we entered a new chapter of higher interest during the later part of 2015.

Well, of course, you have to make up your own mind but BOE, to my eyes, does not look healthy. The ETF price, after recovering from the October Fed meeting swoon, doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. The NAV too seems to be stagnating. Yes, there was the extraordinary, ad hoc double dividend in October. That was nice and made up for some of the drop in share value. But today on a hunch I happened to go and check where the distributions were coming from. The bottom chart. That was kind of scary and I was disquieted. No dividend income at all? How is that possible in 2014? I seem to trip over dividends all over the place. So how come BOE claims it hasn’t had any since Q3. Well that was a red flag for me. There are plenty of other options. So I have had it with BOE. Just thought I would let YOU know in case you were not aware that 100% of the current distributions is via ‘Return of Capital’.

Happy Holidays.


BJBHX, Aberdeen (Artio) Global High Income Fund: Might As Well Stick It Out Till 2015.

4069306934_c300,200,50,50,100Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by Anura Guruge


Related posts:
1/
BJBHX has decent December 2013 — Dec. 23, 2013.
2/ 
Uncontrollable Infatuation With BJBHX — Mar. 9, 2013.
3/
Artio Global High Income Mutual Fund (BJBHX):
>>
I Bailed With Regret – Jan. 3, 2013.

++++ Search ‘BJBHX‘ for other related posts >>>>


BJBHX and, as I have mentioned before,
go back a ‘long’ time
— which I think is getting close to 6 years by now.

bjbhxnov2014

Click to ENLARGE. From ‘marketwatch.com’.

It has been a bumpy, sometimes very bumpy, ride at time. Twice I have bailed out, many times I have reduced my holdings — only to go back, tail between my legs, within 3 months.

So far, despite weeks of intense research, over many years, I have yet to find anything that delivers the same overall results, in terms of monthly dividends and marginal NAV appreciation, over the long run. BJBHX, since c. 2008, has saved my bacon and made sure that the kids can have bacon when they want it.

Yes, anytime the Fed is even thinking about increasing rates BJBHX takes a hammering. So September of this year was agonizing. I looked around. Nowhere else where I could realistically take refuge. So clung on. Monthly dividends weren’t anything to truly rejoice but they weren’t dreadful.

I had a looked at the ESTIMATED year-end distributions for December 2014. I have been burned on that — particularly in 2012. So, I take it all with a large handful of salt. I kind of double-guess their estimates. But, I have to say, even with me downgrading the numbers it could be a fairly decent year, though, of course, that has tax consequences. I have toyed with the idea of liquidating the day ahead of the ex-Div. date. That way I still get whatever dividend was priced in and only have to deal with Capital Gains — or in my case Losses because I have enough carryover from the dot.com era to last me this lifetime and a few more. But, as some of you may know BJBHX has a habit of going up on ex-Div dates IF the market does well! Basically the increase in the NAV overshadows the dividend being taken out.

So that is where I stand. No point doing anything shortterm. We have taken the interest rate related lumps, for the year, already.

Come Spring 2015 I will reevaluate matters again. So that is where I stand on BJBHX.


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