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. ]
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.]
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.”
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.]