Dec

29

 1. Stocks were up six days in a row, in conjunction with bonds down six days in row. One ventures to say it's never happened before. The last time it was close in the last 10 years with two straight flushes in opposite directions bonds went up big and stocks went down big.

2. One contends that markets have an inordinate tendency to end at the exact high or low for the year. It's an interesting empirical, statistical, and simulatory question. The last time one tested this for the week one found that the empirical results were completely consistent with randomness.

3. The Chicago Bullets recently lost a game when they were up 35 points, 79-44, with 8:50 to play in third quarter, to Sacramento, being outscored 58-19 the rest of the game. What can we learn about markets and life and sports from such a loss?

4. I was recently asked for the best book on computer programming for an interested person with a systematic nature who hasn't programmed in 25 years. What would you recommend?

5. To what extent are most of the profits of the "banks" — aside from all the things we know about, and above and beyond the vig and the house edge — that has the public so much in arms as they have more common sense than they are given credit for, as Hayek would point out, due to frontrunning their bullish or bearish guidances disseminated to public?

6. My friend and mentor who during the 30 years he has mentored me has never missed a major move in gold left 40 bucks on the table this time, and got out only at $1170 this run up. He's looking to buy again at $1020 with a stop. "What's that?" I asked him and he reiterated that the markets will always be there.

7. The dollar yen has advanced a nice 5% or so in the last week, the way the Japanese wanted it to, and one is reminded that it is never good policy to go against what the central banks want to happen, especially if you don't have unlimited credit.

8. The performance of A Little Night Music at the Roundabout, closing in a few weeks, is the best performance of a Sondheim musical I have even seen. It was written before he became overly hateful and except for Laurel's and my brother Roy's, his lyrics are the best in the world. Catherine Zeta Jones has a beautiful voice, and every word of Angela Lansbury is true and profound. It's the only musical of Sondheim's, and I've seen them all, that I think will stand up in 50 years as a must see for the current young. My favorite is Merrily We Roll Along, which is an autobiography of Sondheim, as well as your average great playwright's receiving a commencement award as a prelude to a fund raiser. I like to hear Sondheim singing his own numbers as it's as if you're in his living room hoping that nothing goes wrong.


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