Monday October 27th, 2008
The 2008 Financial Crisis
Yes, I haven't updated my blog in a while, and, yes, I am back in the USA. I hope you saw the latest pictures of Costa Rica and the Osa Peninsula. There are several pics missing from this group -- I'm waiting on pics from my Dad and Debbie. Also, my USB flash drive is no longer working so I lost some Costa Rica pics and vids; thankfully, though, I was also uploading them to my godaddy server so I didn't lose everything. I'm now in Texas looking for a job. I've sent resumes to Intel, Tabletop Media, Garmin, Landis+Gyr, General Dynamics, Apple, Cisco, Nvidia, SanDisk, Bose, Precor, Google, and Ticom. I've only received responses from a couple companies; with the economy slowing down, I think it's going to take a little longer to find a job than it normally would. In the meantime, I'm playing raquetball and watching college football with my Dad, eating no-sodium foods with Debbie, scanning in 35mm slides from 25 years ago, helping Carrie and Robert strip the cabinets from their kitchen, and reading about bear markets so I can put my cash back into stocks when this thing finally turns. Listening to the news, as usual, it sounds like the end of the world. But I was trying to think if I knew anyone affected by the financial crisis. Yes, everyone's 401k is down, but other than that I couldn't think of anyone directly affected by the crisis. My friends were getting loans to buy houses and cars without problems. Everyone I knew was still receiving their paychecks. Those who had money in banks that went under did not lose their money. Then I finally got a little dose. Not major, but I was finally affected by the financial crisis. I have money in the RYPQX Reserve Fund, which is a money market fund which maintains a NAV of $1.00 and was recommended by my broker as a superior place to maintain cash as it is very liquid and has a better return rate than the bank. However, the Reserve Primary Fund broke the buck on September 16 by announcing a NAV of $0.97 the day after Lehman Brothers filed bankruptcy and an ensuing bank run occurred where $173 billion was redeemed, which caused the fund to liquidate its assets. Two days later another money market fund announced it would liquidate its assets and then the following day the United States Treasury stepped in to stabilize the market by announcing it would insure any funds breaking the buck by restoring the NAV to $1.00. It worked and redemptions returned to normal. Nonetheless, as the fund is being liquidated my money in the reserve fund is frozen. It's been over a month and they have not provided me with an estimate on when I'll be able to receive my cash, except "we intend to begin making payouts as soon as practicable". I didn't even know "practicable" was a word. The SEC issued a temporary order for The Reserve to suspend all rights of redemption. You can read the statement here. So, it looks like everything will be o.k. and will just be an inconvenience (I hope). Nonetheless, reading magazines and watching the news we're on the verge of entering another great depression. The only good thing is that this kind of end-of-the-world sentiment usually signifies bear market bottoms. We'll see...

It's beginning to look more and more like Obama is going to win the 2008 presidential election. I submitted my important swing-state vote in Florida by mail last week. On the outside of the envelope, in which I submitted my vote, is my registered party's name. You would think that after 58,000 absentee ballots went missing last election, they would review things like having "DEM" or "REP" written on the outside of your mail-in envelope. You would think. In eight days we'll see the results...
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Tuesday October 28th, 2008

Wade says:

I filled up with gas the other day for $2.09 per gallon; it sure beats $4 I was paying before CR. Lower gas prices should only help the economy. Also, if you're a Herald Hunt fan, check out the wrap-up here.