October 2012 Newsletter


October 2012 Webinar: FINVIZ: From F to Z
PLAN AHEAD for the Election Results! Part 1 of 2
Spotflux - Guarding Your Privacy for Free
InvestEd 2013

 


InvestEd Inc. Free Webinar
FINVIZ: From F to Z
Sunday, October 28, 2012
8:00 PM-9:00 PM ET / 5:00 PM-6:00 PM PT
Instructor: Saul Seinberg
Webinar Registration


FINVIZ (Financial Visualization) is a free, comprehensive website that serves as a front end, which helps investors and traders look into a stock data base. The ability to screen stocks on a very large and robust set of criteria is this website’s most attractive feature. Most compelling is the significant array of fundamental data and technical indicators on which screens can be based. FINVIZ also has some restrictions that can limit the granularity of screens. This presentation will explore the upside potential of FINVIZ for investors and traders along with its minor limitations.


Register now to attend the InvestEd Inc. free online investor education webinar. Space is limited.


Saul is an InvestEd Inc. advisory director and a conference instructor. A former vice president for education of InvestEd, he teaches at local through national investor education events. He is a former director and vice president of the Rocky Mountain Chapter of BetterInvesting. With degrees in electrical engineering and law, Saul spent most of his career as a corporate attorney. In addition, he served as an adjunct professor at Albany Law School in New York.


 

PLAN AHEAD for the Election Results! Part 1 of 2
Don Cassidy


As you read this, November 6 is about 30 days away. How nice it will be when those nasty ads cease! Assuming no repeat of Florida’s hanging chads of 2000, the market will know on November 7 what the political landscape looks like. Prudent investors plan ahead for foreseeable events, rather than reacting afterward! But, you say, "I don’t know the results yet." Well, I can see three relevant scenarios, and you should think in advance without emotion about how to handle each. (Warning: acting in the market on your political preferences is dangerous. The majority will be happy that it rules!)


The possible scenarios are a three-part sweep by Mr. Obama and the Democrats, the same for Mr. Romney and the Republicans, or continued divided government, wherein neither party controls both parts of Congress and the Presidency. For each scenario, we see vastly differing implications for the future and the market. While trying to be nonpartisan, I believe I am being fair in saying that a Democratic sweep means higher investment-related taxes and more regulation; a Republican sweep means lower taxes and lowered spending and regulation. Split election results imply a more moderate set of policies. Each possibility is real (assign your own probabilities), but all should be examined now rather than later. Professionals will do so, so don’t handicap yourself by putting off your thinking! (I’m assuming neither party will achieve a veto-proof majority in both houses, barring some huge event. So forced compromise is the likely scenario, except for a three-part sweep, in which case vetoes are irrelevant.)


We’ll examine industries next month. First, though, taxes! To avoid the 'fiscal cliff' (Mr. Bernanke's blunt phrase!), Congress WILL ACT in a lame-duck session before December 31 to extend the Bush tax cuts. The fate of the bracket for incomes over $250K will be unresolved until the newly elected Senators and Representatives take office in January. Then, a sweep either way would decide the issue sharply, while split power implies some compromise. This probably would mean moderately higher rates on income, including capital gains and dividends, for just the high-bracket folks as a bipartisan compromise with some revenue raised. (In this scenario, we would be politically safe for 22 months until the 2014 election!) The death tax and fixing the AMT patch have similar up/down/compromise outlooks. The 2% FICA-tax cut will be extended through at least 2013, which otherwise would result in a household-pounding $110-billion tax hike.


What are the consumer-behavior implications of tax changes? Divided power means not much change. The economy will dominate behavior; expect it to stay below historical standards. Tax increases likely would hit high-earning households. Impacts would be negative for jewelry, cruises/travel, etc., but probably not for much else.


Part 2 of this article next month: a look at types of federal spending, the regulatory environment, and implications for stocks in individual industries. For now, the takeaway: PLAN AHEAD! Think it out now and be ready to act. Successful investing always requires anticipating change. And of course, by all means, do vote!


 

Spotflux - Guarding Your Privacy for Free
Sandy Gallemore


Even if you are hiding behind your computer, you are not anonymous when using the Internet! Prying eyes want to know what you search for and what sites you use. Unfortunately, many search engines keep a log of user activities, and many telecom companies do the same.


Spotflux, a New York City start-up company, creates tools to help protect your privacy on the Internet. The free download provides checks for invasive tracking, ads, cookies, malware, IP-address snoopers, and other bugs posing threats to your data and identity. The program makes your IP address anonymous and encrypts your Internet connection, thus reducing your risk of a virus caused by Internet activity.


A review of Spotflux in a PCWorld article does warn that a level of trust is needed to use this service, since the Spotflux servers know everything about all of your Internet activity. On the other hand, you are assured that your Internet activities are anonymous and are protected.


Competition to Spotflux is the Tor Network, another free service that keeps your Internet activity private. Check out the Spotflux website and the Tor Network website to become acquainted with these programs and the concept of protecting your Internet activity.


InvestEd 2013
Wichita KS, June 7-9, 2013
Hotel: Hyatt Regency Wichita


Plan to join us for InvestEd 2013. Online registration is available now, and you also can make your hotel reservations. Mark your calendar for the November newsletter: the session schedule will be available and linked from the newsletter!


 

 

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