Mr Medved

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Everything posted by Mr Medved

  1. I saw a bullion dealer last week for the first time in ages. Sadly my favourite one died last year. He said margins were competitive up until about 12 months ago, but since then dealers had increased their margins from spot. Unsure the reasons for this. Apparently if you're more than 2.5-3.0% off spot you're not competitively pricing, but there are dealers that can get away with 8% through size and reputation. I think gold is a good insurance policy but not necessarily a place to look for big returns. I think commodities will be a good place to be, but (some) may actually decline if trade wars escalate between USA and China. BTC seems to be following the classic bull market curve. I doubt there will be anything like the highs last year, at least not any time soon.
  2. Issue is not so much money, but social cohesion. Bringing in labour means those people are not unemployed and starving in China.
  3. BRI is the Chinese version of western "economic hitman" approach of loading up countries with unpayable debt. There will always be a shadow around these types of deals.
  4. Given the RBA isn't going to raise interest rates, I'm guessing the AUD may be about to head down the toilet. I may need to pick up some more USD quick smart!
  5. Hey if you sell your place to a foreigner you should sell your story to some news outlet as an expose on dodgy property dealing (after settlement of course!).
  6. Not always a correct translation. The Russian word for bargain is "Torg" (not Tor). It's used a lot in real estate advertising, but rather than imply the place is a bargain it means the owner is willing to haggle (negotiate to a lower than advertised price). The don't seem to do auctions.
  7. Need to cram in more immigants to buy overpriced sh*t boxes. How do you say "bargain' in Mandarin?
  8. Good luck with the sale. Not something I envy even with a capital gain, seems like a pain in the butt.
  9. I haven't worked out the best wording, but there's a great meme in waiting - Barnaby gets a staffer pregnant, Trump bangs porn stars. Just a different league... the difference between a second-rate accountant and a billionaire.
  10. You should actually consider or do research on the Nikkei. It's been in a bear market for so long it will have to come good (or better) at some stage.
  11. Congrats! 10% interest rates was in reference to Europe. My understanding is that an increase in interest rates is bad for bonds not good. Armstrong also believes US stocks will perform well.
  12. Travel for work is mostly a major pain in the backside. It's only useful if I can time it with other activities like conferences or leisure.
  13. Holy sh*t! IIRC the base rate for a councillor in my area was getting $10k a year. The City of Melbourne may pay a lot more than that.
  14. Years ago I considered putting myself up as a candidate for council election. The council was based on different areas, so you had to live in one of them. One guy was elected uncontested. It staggered me that only one person actually nominated for election. So he went straight in. I didn't bother because the stipend was pretty low (hence so much corruption) and I hate politics.
  15. Yeah but some animals are more equal than others.
  16. Central Asia is more interesting than south-east Asia IMO. I've spent quite a bit of time in Kazakhstan, and also travelled to Kyrgyz Republic/Kyrgyzstan about a decade ago. Spent a few days in Siberia earlier this year and planning to go back. If you stay in Almaty or Bishkek you're very close to mountains and nature. If you're interested in meeting women it's a good mix of Asian and Slavic women. Japan's always fun but better for @tor to talk about it... if he's still living there.
  17. Yeah but what happens when the insurers go broke? IIRC Westpac were re-insuring themselves which provided for no protection. If defaults happen they will ripple through the system. The banks will not be immune.
  18. That's why the push to eliminate cash. It wasn't that long ago people were paid in cash for normal work, now you're forced to have a bank account. If you don't register a child and obtain a birth certificate then they cannot engage in commerce. The birth certificate creates a legal identity ("strawman") for the living being. One can't exist without the other these days. There is a difference between operating "in the public" and "in the private" but I do not fully understand it. The legal system is like Alice in Wonderland, perhaps even more bizarre. If you want to stay off the grid then you need multiple identities (multiple birth certificates, etc.). I have been told anecdotally that in remote regions birth registration documents are handed out in remote communities about once a month, otherwise they are closely guarded. Unless you want to farm such certificates the only other option I can think of is a Snowtown-like scenario... not really my cup of tea!
  19. Police state. Pure and simple. I always avoid the "advanced" screening machines as they are harmful to health. At least in the USA you can always opt out.
  20. Ouch. That's a fair haircut for a dog box miles away from the CBD.
  21. Something like this that is planned over the course of seven years will never happen. More likely to see unicorns IMO.
  22. Lots of countries have issued USD-denominated bonds. They will be cactus. It's like the people who took out mortgages in foreign currencies, only it's whole countries which will feel the pain. Will see global deflation IMO until the next version of QE is announced. Pegs always break and the HKG will be no different, just a matter of timing. They have insane price-to-income ratios for housing too. I think if there is financial strife the mainland will step in to exert its influence. I keep forgetting to buy more USD! I'll need to do that next week. As I watch the RUB it's interesting to see that it is weakening along with the AUD against the USD. I think commodity currencies may be in for a bit of pain if we see serious deflation.
  23. The government job agencies are a complete waste of time and money. Last time I used one was over a decade ago when I applied for the dole after returning to Australia broke. Unfortunately had no choice to take the dole at the time, else starve. You were mandated to attend their sh*tty "training" courses that were completely useless. You were also forced to apply for 10 jobs a fortnight. It didn't matter which ones either. Since then I've never applied for the dole even though there has been a few occasions when I've been between jobs and could have received payments. It's just an uber-depressing thing to go to Centrelink and jump through the hoops. I figure if people actually want to be on the dole then let them and cut out all the bullsh*t that is costing billions of dollars. Bashing those on unemployment payments is just cannon fodder for talk back shock jocks and politicians. There are very few that are "dole bludgers", most are either between roles or unemployable. I honestly think it's a waste of money, just give them the meager amount they receive. It's much cheaper than prisons or dealing with the social costs, and all the unnecessary process and compliance, etc. is a waste.
  24. I liked the chart overlaying Chinese credit and the AUD: https://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2018/05/strategists-scramble-catch-tumbling-australian-dollar/
  25. Finland have apparently ended their experiment with universal basic income: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-04-24/finland-abandons-universal-basic-income-experiment-after-two-years