Shatner's Bassoon

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About Shatner's Bassoon

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  1. I think that's fair. This man's work has obviously massively influenced this thread and given that its central premise is around his wider macro/cycle picture, I must admit to being a little surprised that he's in the business of making bold short-term predictions like this. Twitter is full of US alpha male shills cockily making outlandish "100% guaranteed" calls that are quietly glossed over when they turn out to be incorrect. That's not to say that I don't find his arguments compelling or that he won't eventually be right. But given his importance to this thread, I think it's only fair that we look at his record. This is not to denigrate DB either - I love his posts and I've learned so much from him and others on here.
  2. Well, it’s just to remind myself not to have all my eggs in one basket, especially if it’s the company I work for. Wasn’t contemplating suicide! I think I probably have about 11% of my portfolio in Centrica shares. Still hefty for a single stock, but a fair bit is tied up in schemes that can be cancelled and restarted at lower option prices. Worst case scenario you get your money back. Option price is 20% off current prices, so hoping it stays low for another week as it means this year’s will be sub £1.00.
  3. Very true. I heard of an RBS employee who killed himself because of this. Which often crosses my mind when I look at my (fairly) daft number of Centrica shares and its ever dwindling share price. With the tax benefits, cheap option prices, a buy 2 get 1 free scheme, dividends, and the ability to cancel sharesaves and take out new ones at a lower price, it's pretty hard to make a loss with these schemes, even at this level, but I'd still be a bit goosed if the company went under. On the flip side, if it ever does take off in a reflation it would probably buy me a cheap house...
  4. I went a couple of times on work-dos back in the '90s when they became a thing and I was young and knew no better. The worst bit was making polite conversation before the music started. I asked one girl if she'd read any good books lately. I asked another if she enjoyed the work and she said "no, it's horrible", which added a certain melancholy twinge to the subsequent arse-wafting-in-face to the strains of Blackstreet's 'No Diggety'. I also found it funny that blokes would misread the body language and think that the girl was genuinely interested in them. An Indian work colleague was convinced he was in with one girl and approached her at the bar when she was on a break. Just as he opened his mouth she just went "are you going to fuck off or what?" and he turned immediately around.
  5. I'm in the same boat. Good to see others here with the same thinking. I can't say it was exactly the original plan (it's crackers when you think about it) but very happy with the situation now - dividends and compounding are making it easier every year and our rent's less now than it was in 2002. I'm also lucky that I have an understanding wife - we're both into minimalism and neither of us wanted kids. Rarely discuss it with friends and colleagues and am sure they look down on us for still renting. Not sure we'll ever buy where we are now (Manchester) though could buy somewhere outright now. Fully onboard with Sancho's idea of renting anywhere abroad. The idea of escaping the north west in winter and disappearing to somewhere like Puglia for 6 months is very appealing.
  6. Pretty sure you can buy GDXJ now - if you try to deal you get a 'Stock Market Closed' message, but if you try to buy GDX you get the standard message about the KIID document not being made available.
  7. There's been quite the about turn from Powell since last month and the Christmas Eve bloodbath. Is that it for rate hikes then? Gold at $1320
  8. Royal Mail are blaming a larger than expected decline in letter volumes (as they also did back in October). The thing is, those letters are never coming back. I work for a large energy company and the old model of churning out paper bills and reminders and driving calls into call-centres is dying on its arse. We're competing with much nimbler, online account management only companies with much lower operational costs. We're closing call-centres and have an aspiration to send no paper by 2021 (this won't happen, but the direction of travel is clear). We currently push around 150m letters through RM. Young people don't want to ring their energy supplier - it's all paperless billing, text, webchat and online account management now. Even email's out of date now. When the current crop of pensioners die off, that'll be it. Plus GDPR means businesses are terrified of sending out junk mail. Am all for contrarian plays but I just can't see where the growth is coming from.
  9. Thanks for the advice. Yes, the way the share price plummeted the day before the placing RNS screamed insider trading. Still, it's a serious project so worth a speculative punt. Not huge sums, obviously.
  10. Been a torrid few days with the placing and now this. Bit gutted I didn't top slice when it hit 2p but all valuable investing psychology lessons for me...crazy AIM stock - it's up and down more than a kid on tartrazine. Planning to top up if it goes sub-1p again. The project isn't dependent on EU funding so feels like an over-reaction.
  11. Do you plan on doing any top slicing? I'm leaning towards 'shit or bust' but guess it's never a profit until you cash it in.
  12. Haha, well spotted! Nice avatar btw. 'Laughing Stock' is a wonderful record...
  13. Thought this thread was interesting - very much chimes with the views on here. (click on Michael Krieger's text rather than the original part below to see his thread).