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Wednesday, 05 February 2020 10:48

Watch Out for the Tesla Casino

(Los Angeles)

One prominent short seller has come out warning investors about Tesla, 2020’s rocket ship stock. Citron Research, a legendary short-seller, says that investors should dump Tesla’s stock, as the gains have all been “computer-generated”. The stock closed up 14% again yesterday. Citron says “This is obviously a computer-generated rally, it’s not a reflection on the company, or on valuation. It’s just a trade … Yes, I'm shorting it…whoever bought it at these prices has to flush it out, and when it flushes, it’s going to flush hard.” The firm also referred to Tesla’s stock as a casino.

FINSUM: Tesla is up 112% in 2020. This is a case study in irrational exuberance, or what might now be called “momentum”.

(New York)

Donald Trump wasted no time in highlighting Democrats’ big debacle in the Iowa Caucus. And interestingly, markets wasted no time in jumping on news of the issues in Iowa. In particular, bank stocks jumped across the board (from JPM to BAC and beyond) on news of the reporting issue in Iowa. Investors think a Trump re-election will be better for markets, and bank stocks are particularly sensitive as the current president is viewed as much more favorable to financial companies.

FINSUM: If Bernie ends up winning the Caucus, expect markets to take a little hit, as he (or Warren) will be the exact opposite of “good” for bank stocks.

Tuesday, 04 February 2020 11:08

The Iowa Caucus Debacle


Whether you are a Democrat or a Republican, the ongoing “reporting issue” with the Iowa Caucus is highly embarrassing. Democrats were unable to report a winner after voting closed last night because of irregularities in reporting. The party’s new app, which voters and reporting areas used, did not fail. Nonetheless, there were inconsistencies and reporting issues (e.g. phone lines were down). Candidates were unable to comment on their success or failure, save Pete Buttigieg, who declared victory.

FINSUM: Trump jumped all over this, as one would expect. It does not look good for Democratic competence to have a big screw-up on their first trip out of the gate in 2020.

Tuesday, 04 February 2020 11:01

Tesla is Starting to Look Dangerous

(Los Angeles)

Tesla’s stock has been rising almost as fast as Elon Musk’s rocket ship ambitions. Not only is the stock up almost 100% this year already (!), but shares rose by a shocking 20% on Monday alone. Why? The lack of a concrete reason is what makes the move alarming. There was some relatively minor news from a supplier about battery prices, but otherwise nothing. That is making many traders expect that a short squeeze has hold of the market, making gains artificial and moving the stock dangerously away from its moving averages.

FINSUM: Tesla shares seem to be showing a high degree of irrational exuberance right now. Any bad news could cause a huge drop.


More focus has been put on what Elizabeth Warren has said about wealth management, but the reality is that Bernie seems much likelier to win the bid, and his opinions are more poorly understood. With the Iowa caucus starting today, it seems the right time to start thinking about it. Bernie seems likely to take a very hard line on wealth management, likely replacing all the top management of the relevant agencies and taking a new line on Reg BI and the Fiduciary Rule. It is hard to imagine he would be comfortable with existing regulation and given how the Democratic party views the role of agency power, it seems like big changes might be made.

FINSUM: Given Bernie’s views, the changes to the industry might not just be limited to regulations, but also to mergers and acquisitions of wealth managers, and of course, huge tax changes.

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