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Archive for January, 2011

Cold comfort: natural gas glut vaporizes

January 21, 2011 1 comment

Buried in yesterday’s news cycle (and Northeastern snowbanks), Rocky noticed that the widely reported “glut” of domestic natural gas inventories suddenly vaporized. Or more accurately, it oxidized.

The Department of Energy reported yesterday  that Eastern US natural gas inventories are now BELOW their five-year average, and national inventories are in-line with their five-year average. See: http://ir.eia.gov/ngs/ngs.html

Rocky believes that  inventories remain ample. However, a  few more weeks of arctic cold weather, and natural gas consumers will feel the same chill that heating oil consumers have been experiencing. 

[Disclosure:   Rocky never gives investment advice, but he thinks natural gas is “cheap” compared to crude oil.  But that doesn’t mean the natural gas price will go up or the crude oil price will go down…. For details, see Rocky’s Definitions at the top of this page under Rocky I and Rocky V. ]

Reduce the deficit: sell the White House

January 12, 2011 Comments off

Zillow.Com is a nice website that “values” properties across the country. But sometimes Zillow gets a little too cheeky.

Their “zestimate”  for 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is $251,617,000. For only a monthly mortgage of $1,036,276, you can enjoy 16 bedrooms and 35 baths in this 55,000 sq. foot mansion. (Built 1752).  See: http://www.zillow.com/homes/1600-pennsylvania-avenue-washington_rb/

Zillow says the White House market value declined  25 % since the peak of the housing boom. Hence Rocky believes  it’s a great time for value-oriented condo-developers to swoop in. (“Great views, working fireplaces, bullet-proof windows, great yard for the kids and dogs….)

[Disclosure: Rocky continues to shop for a nice vacation home, but he hates DC’s muggy summer weather.]

One way to avoid “eating crow”

January 10, 2011 1 comment

New York’s new governor, Andrew Cuomo promised voters that he’ll clean up Albany’s back-room politics and reduce wasteful spending. He’s got four years to achieve his goals — but even if he fails, it seems that he won’t be “eating crow.”

January 10, 2011

Crow Dispersal Notice:
Please note that the US Dept. of Agriculture Wildlife Services will be conducting crow dispersal on Monday, 1/10 and Tuesday, 1/11 in Downtown Albany. They will be starting efforts both nights at 3:30 pm and continuing until around 8 pm.  You may hear loud unfamiliar noises in the area of Broadway from Pine Street to Clinton Avenue. This is part of their efforts and we appreciate your patience during this time.
 

 

Our mission:  To restore, promote and maintain the character and viability of downtown Albany and improve the quality of life and overall image for those who live in, work in and visit the Capital City

The best kind of pay raise

January 3, 2011 Comments off

Rocky just approved his employee paychecks for the first pay period of 2011. He noticed that everyone’s paycheck  increased by almost 2%.

“I don’t remember approving any raises!”  Rocky grumbled to his CFO.  “Especially not for Bosley in the mailroom. That’s the guy who nodded off while sitting in front of the postage meter — and his forehead wasted a few hundred dollars in postage stamps!”

“Rocky, it’s the tax cut,” explained the CFO.  “Congress passed a one year holiday on Social Security and Medicare taxes. Everyone’s paycheck went up by about 2%.”

“That’s great,” said Rocky.  “Allowing  people to keep their own money is always a good thing. But what should we do with all those wasted postage stamps? Maybe we should hand them out as holiday bonuses?”

[Disclosure: Reducing taxes is the most efficient  way to stimulate an economy.]