What I Learned – This Week

This week was tough. I don’t like winters at all. The only good thing is that I can take some time to hibernate and think through some stuff. For the most part, my brain doesn’t seem to work as well.

This week, I learned about the Gamestop stock pump by users of Robinhood. It isn’t the first time Robinhood has stopped trading of a stock but this time is seemed like it was done to help their larger customers, the hedge funds. By stopping the ability to buy more stock and only allowing selling, they quickly brought the price of the stock back to earth. My thought is that hedge funds that were burned on the way up were surely buying puts on the way down.

I often get a feeling about certain stocks or opportunities. In many cases, I can say with a high degree of confidence that something will happen. I often don’t invest but in many cases the stock goes up or the event happened. My inability to capitalize on those thoughts is something I need to work on.

Doge Coin was one of those thoughts. I mean, come on. A coin casually endorsed by Elon Musk – surely as a joke. But, that influence has value and the media coverage adds value to the underlying asset. That is the same with any company. No such thing as bad PR. If a company is in the news for anything, suddenly they have more recognition and ability to get people interested in what they are saying or doing. Doge Coin price went from about .005 to over 6 last week. A no-brainer that a small $5K investment would’ve turned into $60K within a week. Ugh.

There will always be a next time. Opportunities come up weekly.

I never thought about the term “zero-sum game.” It means that there are winner and there are losers. For there to be winners, someone has to lose. For someone to win $5, someone needs to lose $5. The net result is 0.

I took some time to think more about the next eleven months. My father is going to be 81 years old next week. I plan on going to his house in Easton to see him. Nobody knows how many more birthdays he has. I’ve been a little better at tolerating his side-remarks lately. Sometimes it takes me about three or four days to get through those and shake them off. (side note. The song Shake It Off comes to mind. We should all just shake that negativity off and move forward.)

I spent some time watching a show called Spycraft on Netflix. It was very interesting in part because it talks about privacy and how our global society is becoming more transparent and therefor it is much easier for people to spy on each other. Apps, for example, often collect various types of information that, if accessed by a government, could potentially cause some significant issues for someone.

Most of us feel an artificial sense of privacy when we message someone online or even just visit a website. But, everything is tracked and massive amounts of data are being collected, shared and sold. We are targeted.

Part of me feels that it is good because surely there is a lot of seedy activity going on out there that has stopped because people fear getting caught. A creative part of society has been lost though because the freedom to go in random directions and explore the unknown has stopped. People might not do something just because they think everyone will know about it.

I learned that Simon Cowell and I share a birthday. Surprisingly, I also think we share much of the same taste.

Gary

I grew up in Baltimore and currently live in the Rodgers Forge community just north of Baltimore City.

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