Showing posts from June, 2015

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Clearly, Not Everyone Is Getting Rich Off The Stock Market

Well, the NY Fed was out today with its Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit for Q4 2017. Clearly, Americans are in a lot of debt. Take a look.

Just a couple of quick hits from the report. Total U.S. household debt rose $193 billion in the 4th quarter, to a new all-time peak of $13.15 trillion. That's 17.9% above the most recent trough in Q2 2013. Broken down by segment, what do you suppose was the largest gain in percentage terms? Credit cards, with a 3.2% increase. In the picture above, the widening gap represented by the red arrows reflects the fact that non-housing debt is rising at a faster pace than housing debt.

Here's what's troubling about that. Below is a picture of the stock market, as represented by the S&P 500 index, over that same period; from the most recent credit trough in Q2 2013 to the end of 2017.

And thus, the title of this article. Over that period, the S&P 500 index rose by 75%; from roughly 1,600 to 2,800. Apparently, however, the r…

Starbucks' Sale Of La Boulange Highlights So Much That Is Wrong With Our Culture

This is a rant. I am ETF Monkey. Not Stock Monkey, ETF Monkey. For the most part, my goal is to write about ETFs. But today I am going to write about a stock. I am going to write about Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX). A company I like. A company I am going to try very hard to like after today. But a company that just made it a little harder for me to do so. What has made it so difficult for me? This announcement, released two days ago, June 16, 2015. In a masterpiece of "corporate speak," Starbucks announced that they are going to "close all 23 La Boulange retail (bakery cafes) locations, as well as the two manufacturing facilities that serve those locations, by the end of September 2015." In other words, pretty much everything that was actually La Boulange. What do I mean by that? La Boulange - A Brief History La Boulange was founded in San Francisco in 1999 by Pascal Rigo, a native of Bordeaux, France who later emigrated to the United States. Rigo had earlier started the …

Introduction to Foreign Stocks

Author's Note: If you find my work valuable, I would deeply appreciate your taking a minute to follow me on Twitter, Google +, and/or Facebook and/or sharing a link to this article on your social media accounts.

Most American investors begin their venture into the world of investing by investing in domestic stocks, in other words stocks of companies based in the USA. And this is natural, for these are the companies with which they are most familiar.

Interestingly, whether through direct investment or via mutual funds or ETFs, some portion of these investments likely involves U.S. Multinationals. These are companies based in the U.S. but who actually generate very large portions of their revenues outside the U.S. As an example, if you look at page 15 of the Coca-Cola Q1 2015 financial results, you will notice that only $5.1 billion of their $10.7 billion of operating revenues were in North America, meaning that the remaining $5.6 billion, or more than 50%, were outside the U.S.A.