Good morning

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The headlines:

  1. Bank of Japan says that that risk of a prolonged global slowdown is increasing.

    Link: some Sherlock-like deductions.

    Luckily, the Bank of Japan is “poised” to take decisive action if necessary.

    Japan has the highest debt burden in the world. The Bank of Japan has, like, a 0% interest rate. At best, they can print some yen.

    That’s not really “poised for action” so much as “poised at the edge of the cliff to leap headfirst while a menacing gentleman approaches from behind”.

  2. Singapore REITs are are yielding “world’s best returns”.

    Link: were we not talking about mega-churches yesterday?

    Real Estate Investment Trusts are vehicles that pool investors’ money and buy up properties wherever their mandate directs them.

    In Singapore, REITs have been achieving crazy returns this year like 37% this year. No doubt helped by the multi-million dollar investments being made by the mega-churches.

    But to the point: 37%!! Crazy.

    The other part of the story is that property rents are between 20% and 30% lower than what they were at their highest levels a few years ago. The unwritten implication is that the rents can go back to those levels. Not so sure about that.

    But still – 37%!!

  3. India’s “potato prince” gets free power.

    Link: if it’s free, then it’s not worth very much.

    Farmers being given free power = blackouts.

    At which point, there’s no power. And it’s being supplied for free. Sounds about right.

    The issue is that we’re not talking about subsidies being offered to poor farmers (the folk that probably need some help). What we’re talking about is blanket free power, “paid for” by the state (about $6 billion per year – more than is spent on education), for anyone that is a farmer. Including the big commercial farmers, like Mr Jang Bahadur Singh Sangha, the self-styled potato prince.

    And given that about one fifth of the population are farmers…

    Complete wastage. Why would any farmer attempt to be electrically-efficient at all if it’s free? It’s why populism is such a fail.

  4. Rinehart tells Australia that mining there is too expensive.

    Link: her direct quote is a CLASSIC.

    Mining heiress and richest-woman-in-Asia, Gina Rinehart, has announced that “the evidence is unarguable that Australia is indeed becoming too expensive and too uncompetitive to do export-oriented business”.

    Which sounds fair enough. Until she defended a move to bring into Australia 1,700 foreign workers to work on some of her mines:

    “Business as usual will not do. Africans want to work. Its workers are willing to work for less than $2 a day.”

    Oh Gina. The millionaires/billionaires/your children will probably agree with you. But they don’t say it out loud.


  5. Facebook: an update.

    Link: a new record low.

    Quel surprise.

    Morgan Stanley released a negative report about Facebook’s efforts on the mobile-advertising front.

    I myself have noticed that there is some advertising taking place on my facebook app. Apparently, many of my facebook friends like Coke and Castle Lager. So obviously, I have been rushing out to buy Coke and Castle Lager.

    Of course, if I see a facebook-friend-that-I-actually-dislike-but-we-pretend-to-be-friends-because-it’s-not-very-cool-to-only-have-20-facebook-friends liking something, then I probably won’t buy it.

    It seems that the analysts may have realised that?

  6. The suing from 9-11.

    Link: 11 years on, nein on the being-over front.

    American Airlines and United Continental Holdings have lost a bid to avoid being sued for negligence for allowing their planes to be hijacked and flown into the twin towers.

    Are they not ready yet to let this rest?

  7. Marky Z says he won’t sell his FB shares for at least a year.

    Link: that decision seems totes obvs.

    If MZ started selling out, that wouldn’t be such a great PR move for the facebook share price now would it?

    And read this article on the Facebook shares because it’s hilarious, and I haven’t advertised a Matt Levine article for a while.

That’s all for now.

Have a good day.