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Island Investing

Riffs, rants, and the upside of investing from way off Wall Street

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IIM International Portfolios: First Half of 2024

More of the Same – Or Not? Despite sticky interest rates, wars, saber-rattling and natural disasters, broad US equity indices, and especially growth indices, continued to roll through the 2nd quarter leading to double-digit gains for the first half. These gains according to Morningstar, however, were only possible due to the performance of five major […]

IIM International Portfolios: Q1 2024

Where Do We Go From Here? Wars raged in the Middle East and Ukraine, Houthis attacked vessels in the Red Sea, a barge ran into the Baltimore Key Bridge, interest rates and inflation remained stubbornly high and the S&P 500 reached a new high in the first quarter of 2024. The lure of the Magnificent […]

Perspective on Valuations of the Magnificent 7

From an email sent to IIM investors on March 17, 2024… The stock market continues to reach new heights, driven by a stronger-than-expected economy and the largest technology stocks. In particular, Nvidia, a maker of graphics chips used in artificial intelligence applications, recently helped push markets higher after beating Wall Street earnings expectations. This added […]

IIM International Portfolios: 2023 Letter

Santa Baby. Sometime in October 2023, Santa Claus happily surveilled the North Pole. All the elves were busy, but gratefully employed. Almost all the presents were finished and costs were under budget. The reindeer were relieved that Santa had converted his sleigh to a hybrid utilizing solar power, energy that could even light up Rudolph’s […]

IIM International Portfolios: YTD thru Q3 2023

Hot and Cold According to a September 5th report released by the Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) the June-July-August (JJA) 2023 season was the warmest on record by a large margin, with an average temperature of .66 degrees Celsius above normal. The report noted above average precipitation in many places leading to local flooding and […]

IIM International Portfolios: First Half of 2023

Rocket Science The second quarter of 2023 was more bizarre and tragic than the first. Following the incursion of the February Chinese spy balloons, the Pentagon admitted that there are plenty of unexplained anomalous phenomena (UAPs, formerly known as UFOs) floating around. Unrest spread through France as some rioters protested the increase in the retirement […]

What the Looming Debt Ceiling Deadline Means for Investors

From an email sent to IIM investors on May 8, 2023… The federal debt limit is once again in the news as the country approaches a critical deadline on June 1. Investors are understandably nervous about Washington failing to reach an agreement, a possibility that both sides agree would be a self-inflicted catastrophe. While it’s […]

IIM International Portfolios: Q1 2023

No Beautiful Balloons I don’t think The Fifth Dimension was thinking of Chines spy instruments when they asked if we wanted “to fly in my beautiful balloon,” but white balloons, which China claimed were rogue weather monitors, came traveling over the US and South America in February. The US shot down one off the East […]

On Ongoing Banking Turmoil and Staying Opportunistic

From an email sent to IIM investors on March 21, 2023… The banking crisis that began in the U.S. spread to Europe late last week. Concerns over the solvency of Credit Suisse, Switzerland’s second largest “global systemically important bank” (G-SIB), were due in no small part to recent runs on U.S. banks. What made Credit […]

On Bank Failures and Risks to the Financial System

From an email sent to IIM investors on March 13, 2023… The recent failure of three U.S. banks has raised concerns over the economy and financial system. The situation is still evolving and there is plenty of speculation as to what might come next. One significant development is that government officials from the Treasury, Federal […]