Monday, February 4, 2013

Gravity putting up a fight.

A while back, Ludic Research decided to monetise their collective Intestinal Fortitude to relieve the Clueless Coots, that throng the Indian Stock exchanges (despite being unable to count to 16 without taking off their shoes!) of their Clueless Cash.
Things went swimmingly for some a while.. and much sun,fun,wine and women were partook by all.
But lately Gravity, as usual, seems to be fighting to regain some of that lost respect. As more folks have took notice on twitter etc. and unable to digest Dart Chimps trumping heavy artillery of white/brown StockMkt "experts".. started suspecting Human hands behind the Darts. This actually neatly fits in with the way human minds love to build a Story to "make sense of" / "understand" anything it cannot either.

In view of such slanderous narration, we re-summarize some suicidal Rules drafted for the Chimps to live by :
  1. Trade a bigBoys' instrument.. no avoiding Alpha(human) males.
  2. Trade all the time.. no sitting on Sidelines.
  3. Broadcast all Trades.. no Shrinking Voilets.
  4. Point and Laugh at all others.. no man-made Modesty.
  5. Commit Blasphemy every day.. no Divine help sought.
  6. Stay Dying.
The issue at stake is.. can monkeys beat the nasties ?
Back to Darts now.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

What happened to Gravity ??

4 months have passed since we gave the 3 primates a new set of darts to play with and instructed the back-office staff to enter BUY and SELL orders for NIFTY futures based on where the darts landed.
(Of course it wasn't as simple as it sounds.. intricate maps were drawn on the wall and a Sextant played major role in predicting the future angle of NIFTY Futures )

But the levitating Equity Curve here (as chronicled in the Twitter live feed in the sidebar) begs the question .. Where is the fcuking Gravity ??

Now looking for Insurance Policies on the Chimps' Dart throwing Arms.   :(

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Loudest Stopped Clock..

Till recently, Nouriel Roubini was just another unhappy, funny talking, middling, middle aged middle Eastern, with a large middle, who spent his waking hours prognosticating apocalyptic events with a knowledgeably serious air and sparse hair.

For years he'd been waiting in the rain for the law of probability to catch up with his doomsday fairy tales but his little ship just wasn't coming in.
But he kept pitching away.. rain or sunshine.. Nouriel had a newReel every week.
Katerina, Trade deficits , Alien invasions, Govt spending, Consumer not spending, GWBush coverting Muslim , Housing price decline, Internet causing cancer.. Our man NoReel tried and tested hundreds of imminent reasons for Financial Armageddon 5 days  a week and realized the louder he yelled from higher soap boxes .. the better it worked for his morning hangovers.
And so he kept plugging away while trying not to worry about his diminishing hair and sex life.

And suddenly the US housing market ACTUALLY went into DECLINE !!!!!!!!!


His tide was in and Dr.Doom's face was lit up like a Christmas Tree!
NewReel was his name and Ladies was his game !

Suddenly the World looked around for heroes whoSawItComing.. (At Wall Street ,of course .. nobody saw it coming ) .. and that was where our STOPPED CLOCK quietly scored loudest.

Unequivocally the LOUDEST stopped clock wins.

Though, what the world forgot is that a Stopped Clock remains Stopped and since 2008 ignoring NoReel "stoppedClock" Roubini would have paid off immensely.

When you add up that nobody paid heed to him earlier .. and not heeding him later would have recovered all and more.. begs the Question.. what real purpose does a Stopped Clock serve ?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Why Fools Multiply fast in Banking..

More than a hundred years a bearded gent called Herbert Spencer noted "The ultimate result of shielding man from the effects of folly is to people the world with fools.”.

Many years later, another bearded(though clueless) gent Benjamin Bernanke, obviously never having heard this, saved every upright bag of  Tripe posing as a well dressed Banker from quick Darwinistic decapitation.
..and the Planet continues to house, feed and pay for them. :(

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Why White Man can't make money in India..

Every shade of white man periodically gets unhinged about "The India Story" and suddenly realizes his lackluster performance in developed markets can only be sexed up quickly by taking his awesome skills to the Third world and taking some money off  them clueless Natives.

These serious looking, serious talking fools can be spotted easily in the Indian metros during every Bull market, as apart from the giant Bulls-Eye painted on their butt, they are uniformly dull :

  • They ONLY "invest" Other People's Money.. no skin in game as THAT would involve faith in own abilities!
  • They are always Salaried or otherwise fixed remuneration to ensure their "investing" or "allocating" (lack of ) skills do NOT have to keep home fires burning.
  •  They mostly are sidelined goats that have realized NOBODY wants them to trade/invest money in any developed markets anymore.
  • Their firms have large near interest free cash to "deploy" and  Emerging Markets looks like what everyone is talking about.. and our clueless "specialist" is quickly called into a meeting where a ticket to Mumbai is urgently arranged ( because Value has Emerged in India you know..).
  • The size of the funds he needs to get working are inversely related to his ability to locate his ass in the dark with both hands.
Thus armed our alpha generating alpha-male hits the ground running and before you know every  Rascal, Rake,wankStain, Politico-Business Scumbag who'd been shooed away from every known source of  finance in the country (even Public Sector Banks for Chrissake !!) .. suddenly finds himself awash with foreign "smart" money liquidity.. FII, P/E, QIP, FDI.. put near any three English alphabets in together and chances are there is whiteManMoney standing behind it. 

Thus it is this suddenly emerging Bull Market .. the white losers of last year are forgotten and no sooner do they slink away to lick their Third world Rupee wounds that a new crop of history impaired Lotharios descend on the country with Bernanke's freshly printed dollar bills to play BULL.

On The Other Hand .. at least they get to look and sound knowledgeable for some time and forget that useless feeling they grown up with .. even if fleetingly.

Friday, January 20, 2012

The "Strong Stomach==Fat Wallet" trading strategy

Sometime back we had started posting Live how the testosterone charged Luddic trading team was molesting Indian Nifty Futures for personal gain on Twitter (also visible in the sidebar on the blog).

How has that worked for the past 3 months ?
Up about 70% as they poke and paw her.. not bad for 3 chain Smoking dart Throwing Chimps !!

For any skill impaired, chronic losers who read this blog we would advise, firstly, figuring out what this twitter thing is all about, creating an account and finally clicking "follow" the monkeys.

All you need is Intestinal Fortitude and the ability to count upto 20 without removing your shoes.. and trading success can be yours.

Riding on the coated tails of the simians,though a little smelly, would result in the following :

  • Your bowel movements will improve drastically.
  • Your wallet may finally stop looking like a leaky bottom, anorexic, third world child.
  • Your love life may improve owing to increased Libido from successfully fondling Ms.Market.
  • You would also,inadvertently, add to the bananaFund of the Chimps by populating the Dumb money chasing the Primates' momentum *after* they've grabbed the baby.
A note of caution though.. this may not last long as the monkeys are getting fat and bloated on the abundant Bananas (from recent success) and in fact taken to throwing bananas at the Dart board ( and at  female Luddic Research staffers) instead of the Darts as required .. making Market predictions slightly wobbly :( 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Shine On you crazy Diamond

A Nil Ambani has been unable to bask in his trademark awesomeness for a while now. What with all his flunkies(Presidents,VPs etc.) been caught with their pants down trying to corner 2G licenses, floating offshore shells, transferring large funds into dubious other shells, using his family wealth to prop his companies shares through dodgy offshore funds.. all behind our man's innocent back.. but shockingly, some fools are actually insinuating *he* may himself be involved somehow.. the thought !

Adding insult to injury, first the clueless Indian public stopped him from further *unlocking* value in his 29,808 businesses/subsidiaries/shells by not showing any interest in enriching themselves by participating in his growth to the moon.(Overseas Exchanges long been out of bounds for the billionaireBros owing to Myopic accounting and transparency rules that frown upon creativity in books).
Secondly, for incredibly bovine reasons Indian bankers are balking at lending(practically riskless this) to his spawn of blueChips even while he routinely announces mostly Rs.50,000 crore kinds of investments whenever he is asked to step onto a stage at a public function across the Indian countryside.(Foreign banks shied away much earlier as too much hilarity ensued when books of accounts were tabled and the solemnity of the occasion vitiated when Project Finance comically turned into Projected Finance)
Thirdly, this same little bookKeeping issue (actually insignificant in the glorious projected long run of the ADAG)  has been keeping the unimaginative bidders from beating down his door whenever he magnanimously offers them awesome assets on a platter.

A lesser man would have long gone under in these circumstances .. but then Billionaires are no ordinary mortals. So our Cat quickly ran a couple of (half)marathons (and, as usual, somehow managed to clock better times(never officially available) than ordinary mortals who passed by his butt many miles ago).. and got busy planting gameChanging postive spins in Indian media before dawn and looking for honest bankers who understand Projections and Growth rather than old school accounting retards.
Happiness revisits the Empire as the market notes how the Indian cowboy now has far sighted Chinese Bankers partnering in his glorious future.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

We Are B.A.C.K !

Couple of years spent resting on our laurels and blowing ill gotten cash on intoxicants and other exotic fruit.. the team was running a tad low on cash,bananas and wanting another go at the Maaarkkeeeetts :).

Pointing and laughing at "investors'" and stock market "analysts'" small appendages while taking their cash is a joy unrivaled on this planet.

In appreciation of a few readers concern about our demise and their own trading/investing losses, we're publishing live on twitter trade updates for a nifty little program for(what else) Nifty futures.. free beer  ;)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The Honey-Banana trade.. duh.

It has long been the desire and misguided aspiration of the toiling masses to get some inside dope on how the hedge fund cats trade and make their testosterone charged billions while the unwashed run around towns wearing ties, holding meetings, doing lunches, sucking up all and sundry .. but still falling far short of the hedgies' easy coin.

To address a universal desire of the clueless retail crowd .. "give me a to make money in stocks?" .. we part with a little gem we have been milking to sheer boredom..I swear if anyone says fade Madhu-Kela ( that's what Honey-Banana translates in Hindi to..) one more time I will strangle him.. but the fact remains that has been the sitting duck trade for most of the last year and a half.. and just about the easiest money to be made in the Indian markets.. fading the worst momentum chaser in post Independence India.

The fact that Madhu-Kela heads Reliance Mutual fund(purportedly the largest fund in India) also ensures you get plenty of liquidity to frolic in .. but you just need to hang a little longer as he starts believing his own vision and market impact as vindication .. and then it gets really fun.

The reason we divulge a trade secret is .. you know a strategy's time is nigh when your maid's (unemployed) husband conspiratorially confides madhu-kela trade that he heard from the building's maids' (unemployed) husbands' Punters Association's grapevine.. yup the Honey-Banana trade might be nearing the end of it's run.

Apart from stuffing up his fund's coffers with junk promoters' (great visionaries all..but that's about all) offerings or buying overpriced scrips religiously at market tops he regularly scouted across the countryside on weekends during the great Indian bull run .. he spent the last year disbelieving the correction ( proudly proclaiming last year Reliance Industry was his biggest holding .. then priced >2500 ) .. then finally getting out of his bullish clown suit at the bottom .. and to complete a comedy again proclaiming on CNBC after elections that he was physically getting bullish ..shouting bullish .. after the 40% run up !!..

What is there to say .. for all the wannabes out there who've always wanted to, but never been let in to play with the big boys .. you may as well partake this little rustic charm Indian opera.

We also read a limited life span to this strategy as it is only so far a man's small town charms, labored attempts at coherent speech and eager beaver company "visits" can cover up for lack of upper deck density.. and may not be long before their own clueless auditors get worried about certain peers in Satyam audit team having to shift into govt. provided habitat in Hyderabad for merely being "misled" by their client..

So enjoy the last few spades of the Honey.B contrarian cash.. too many drunks at this punch bowl now.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Indian Comedy Show

It would be hilarious if so many clueless, hard working retail investors(aka stockfools) were not hurting..uhm.. actually it *is* hilarious because of such participants in the market.

The market needs fools to fools means no markets.. there is no other way the semi-literates from nondescript towns in the impoverished countryside turn up in Mumbai and grind away at plying the "share bazaar" for many, many years and suddenly find their little daily gaming the suckers is slowly turned into one of the biggest markets with plenty of 'foreigners' ( wise men these) suddenly throwing large wads of OPM(other people's money) into the casino to see if some nice personal bonus could be had..

At Luddic Research we have identified a key parameter that distinguishes Developed markets from Emerging Markets viz. EMs just do not part fools from their money as decisively as developed markets ruthlessly do.. there.. that's a key defining feature which has aided the rise and survival of folks ( who's have had to make a living hustling tourists in Rajasthan/Gujarat etc. for petty cash if had not chanced on the shareBazaar for some quick cash years ago).

And so they held forth on their views of the market to the myriad adoring fans, investors, minions and media who saw Harshads and Ketans as piedPiper reincarnates ( As an aide was heard whispering to a genuflecting investor beneficiary ".. his shit don't even stink").

But the disruptive white and yellow foreigners ( who longTermInvest with the conviction and longTermness of a parakeet) have over time put a pall of uncertainity on the cosy little arrangements with their little cartels/promoters/regulators/bankers that our odorless fertilizer producers had cherished and nourished back in the day when fools were born many a minute and they had never needed to wipe their own asses.

But this overseas non stability is a spanner which is put to paid many a fond megaloDream of many aspiring global giants/groups/houses that are having to face up to some honest money making.

So all over the world, the fund Chimpanzees were in denial all the way down and 25 sigmaed the "butNobodyNeverSawItComing" to anyone who'd listen.. all the way down..

Just when the Rhesus majority were forlonly accepting a slow and multi Year kind of recession wherein Library science would offer more action packed careers than moneyManagement.. just when conventionally mediocre wisdom (and hell even Easy Al) were coming around to the notion they'd been wrong all along.. the market just got up and ran away..

Now this posed a new quandary.. they were all underinvested now (to put it mildly).. and the market was making a massive surges.. last year they'd clung on by their finger nails on the "noOneSawItComing" boat.. and relative returns to index were still only single digit negative .. everyone was in the same boat.. But missing this rally would be curtains .. your "investors" would surely start questioning your new found onlyABearMarketRally wisdom very, very soon.. it was now up 45% since you'd started bleating about that !

And so emerged the third stage.. the primates' swarming the global markets ( yes.. yes.. Emerging Markets.. outperform.. decouple..RealEstate.. growth story.. go.. go.. go.. ) with their remanant cash of last year's boom,boom raising to try and see if now some performance can be had.. cannot miss this one.

It is getting comical and none so as one of the local boom, boom experts Madhu Kela of Reliance Mutual Fund... who's been convincingly holding out for a recovery from Index 20,000 last year and then after a "correction" of 10,000 points when he'd finally started getting worried about the longTermStory and got into rumored 30% cash.. the market upped and ran away.. so our man was on TV to announce he is savegely bullish again.. ( mostly hoping might see some recovery in his outstanding small and medium cap picks ??) and our feeling is he is having to buy, buy, buy to get back over his inadequacies all over again... it was getting a bit iffy announcing those profitable quarters for the country's biggest (Rs.80,000 crore)($15B) fund manager while the markets were tanking 60%.. eh? but then that's the reason we are decoupled here.. one gets a lump in the throat when we dwell on this one pedigreed Bull.

And as usual the astute fund "managers" have nailed it again this time.. and correctly gotten onto the next bull run.. such is the rush to equities that reportedly, awed by the seeming success of orangutans in this industry .. a delegation of marsupials(?!!) has been spotted at the bourses grappling with the basics of Decoupling.. longTermGrowthStory.. RealEstateAlwaysGoesUp.. FundamentalStrong..InfraStructureStory.. etc. to guide, lead and advise the Investors .

At Luddic Research .. we attribute the orgastically rapid upsurge in Market Indices to the rapidly dwindling forest cover in regions from where most stock experts seem to hail from .. as indeed our models show shocking, shocking correlation.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Bovine Immortalilty

Downtown Mumbai has perked up a fair bit.. the pall of morbidity that hung over the city for months just completely lifted a few days back to once again allow the sun to blaze down in glory and the days are sweaty energy again!

Casual visitors have noticed the resurgence of the familiar lovely stench which emanates from the city and the male populi, which'd been missing owing to the (gnawing fear inspired) goose bumps most investors( long term variety) had broken out with in those bleak days.. the absence of this familiar, homely stench only added to the fish-out-of-water feel for the mostly pompous, breed of rotund semi-literates who'd long dominated the Indian investment scene.
And the more astute visitors did notice, indeed.. cold sweat does NOT smell.

Happily, those uneasy days are behind us and the heady glorious-future-ahead feeling is back again much to the relief of the long suffering better( and usually fatter) halves of the aforementioned investors.. family life was beginning to border on bizarre longTermFundamentals' dissertations to nervously receptive spouses and bewildered domestic help.

So much for the scare.. haha.. we all knew .. gotta hold on for the long term.. and we all came out smelling of roses as sure as we knew we would.

Most reception area staff in the financial district report increasingly brisk gait of the investment "professionals" high-fiving into the offices each morning to take partake the punch bowl.

The world stood back and watched in awe as the Indian markets blew the lights out violently to get back on the destined trajectory to global dominance manifest in last year's bull run.

In fact, so short was the (inconvenient) interruption to the Great Indian bull run that the usual comedians, the Japanese investors were still in the process of getting onto the bus of the last bull run and had just about finished wiring the money, for their awesome real estate and pharma plans, to some of the most upright turbaned local beards and the ilk.. and so the usually derided Japs may just find themselves in the unfamiliar situation where they are in early onto a bull run.. notwithstanding it being the next bull run long after the original detected by their slow antennas and entirely unplanned for.. the next bull run just hit the straggler Japs in the behind.. :)
..that's how short the bear market was.

Meanwhile Indian promoters are promoting amazing profits ( hell, even Jet Airways declared a profitable qrtr.. maybe Mallya next up ) .. and the banks show record profits with record low NPAs ..lovely, lovely.

Lastly, the Bombay Stock Exchange finally got the municipal permission to start work on the long overdue Bull Temple dedicated to the (long neglected, compared to his women and relegated to pulling bullock carts in the streets) Bull God outside it's premises with a 6 meter Bronze Idol already commissioned to experts in South India..

The experts are back on TV and clueless Fund managers are trying hard to look clued up.. and the foreign monkeys are grabbing RealEstate QIPs again.. low hanging fruit for lower hanging funds.. normalcy is on its way.. back to the old normal .

Now if only Obama/Bernanke can get Joe American to borrow more, consume more and worry less .. we will all be rolling again.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Brave Indian Investors

Bravery has been a tradition in this land of fearless warriors, just rulers and almighty gods since time began.. in fact bravery was widely practiced in India when European natives were still running around in crude,(very) smelly diapers in their caves.. and don't even get us started on the native American "braves".

So, quite clearly we were far ahead of the planet in any feats that precipitated much chest thumping and the ritualistic hopping dance.
Since paleolithic ages the fairer sex in India has suffered from chronic weak-Knee syndrome resulting from being exposed to much chest thumping and ritual dances, which invariably accompanied the multiple acts of bravery and valor of the hairy chested alpha males around campfires.

As time progressed, the feats became less bloody, in a way, but left the ladies no less awe struck by the sheer, inherent heroism they were exposed to.. and to this day the knees of the Indian women remain arguably the weakest on the planet.

The stock market index has fallen from the heady, frothy 21,000 level to the current, irrational 8,500 (and falling) .. but the braves (a.k.a the Indian retail investors) have stood their ground.. they have rallied behind any and every "expert" on the telly advising them not to panic, not to sell in panic.. long term investors have nothing to worry .. this is in fact a time to buy.. short term volatility is to be weathered.. no need to panic for the "investors" with a horizon..

So, drawing upon their generations of genetic fortitude, the braves did not panic and nobody sold any.. week after week , month after month the shares kept falling .. equity kept vaporizing .. but nobody wanted to panic.. *nobody* could ever accuse a brave of selling in panic.. this after all was what the experts were saying (in any case it felt better to live bravely in hope).. also the two greatest truths were on their side too:
1. How much lower could the stock fall?
2. It was too late to sell ( yet again as it gets after every 1000 point drop since 21,000) ?

Deeply intertwined with the bravery chromosome of the Indian investor is the recently identified handOfGod sheath that most Indian investors are blessed congenitally with.. and recent studies by Luddic Research have shown clearly the average God is much, much more inclined to protect and guide the Indian retail investor and his long term investments rather than any other comparably clueless random clown in other random markets.

As it stands now.. the Indian investor has halved (to be kind) his networth but discovered new pools of bravery in his soul, hitherto unknown, which he should cash in, in short order, as the markets inevitably recover, carrying his brave ass back to the glory and fortune.. and we'll all have a hearty laugh about these trying times.

The only disturbing sign is the new Luddic report out, that talks about an increasingly frequent observation of new cartilage in some urban Indian women's knees that is leading doctors to predict irreversible elimination of the weak-Kneed syndrome in Indian retail Investors' spouses.

To reiterate the Brave Mantra :
1. How much lower can ________ stock go ? (fill in your errant stock)
2. It is too late to sell. (again!!).

Lastly the two premier Stock exchanges NSE and BSE of India have finally succumbed to the pressure from members and started interviewing various hermits, sages, gurus (non financial type) , priests and god men ( basically anyone with a more direct line to the three reigning deities in charge of financial matters ) to be appointed as floor chanters and supernatural put sellers to put a firm floor under these errant prices.

Friday, January 30, 2009

The Dumb Japanese "Smart" Money

For years we'd been taught and narrated in low awed tones about the brilliance of the Japanese in business, in negotiations, in quality, in manufacturing, in work ethic, in attention to details, in kinky sex, in kinky foods, etc. etc.. it was mythical status

Books were written and management gurus born just on their "expertise" of the Japanese way. Legend had it they looked at every possible angle of a deal in 27 different ways and discussed each aspect of each way in 3 diff meetings with 3 different interpreters to gain their fabled holistic bird's eye view (despite admittedly short physical stature).. and at the end of it would utter succintly.. "Ahso, Ok.. I buy" .. sheer genius.

Thusly, the Nipponese folk lore travelled the world and some washed ashore on Indian shores where unsuspecting locals (though they can't differentiate between a Korean, Japanese , Chinese or even Nepalese to save their life).. completely believed in the legendary genius of Shinto.

And then news broke about two turbaned Yoyos up North leaving the small army of Daiichi Sankyo management holding so many proverbial bags after intensive due diligence meetings at Ranbaxy offices, that even the interpreters had to help the CEO carry the bags out.

The news was sensational for two reasons .. one, this turbaned community, locally, are widely parodied as the Indian Polish jokes and regularly at the other side of any bag holding event..( and innately talented at such).. secondly, these two spiffy beards were as good at running Pharma companies as Paris Hilton would be at running a biotech firm.
Their father and erstwhile CEOs grew and ran the company, that fell into their clutches after firing all such, which they promptly hocked to the first bidder(after much emotional soul searching, they did admit).That the monkeys were the famed "Japanese" just got them even more emotional.

So the yellow, globe trotting, business leading, opportunity spotting, deal making chimpanzees got oversized bags this time to hold. at Rs. 700 + a share .. which we learn made the globally expanding giant Daiichi Sankyo sputter to a $3.7 billion loss on the writeoffs owing to the turban fomented losses, as the share strangely plummeted to under Rs.200 a share.

As it stands today the same clueless wonder turban, Malvinder Mohan Singh, is still at the helm ( this is the famed inscrutible Japanese strategy at work) rumor has it the CEO Takashi Shoda ( still the CEO as the board dither through their 27 rounds of due diligence to identify the cause and assign an asian scapeGoat) has blamed it all on all interpreters unable to correctly understand the final sale figure spoken through excessive facial hair, as it were.
But, a promise was a promise (japanese honor thing).

But this was weak defence at best and the Nipponese Board (known to nip buds swiftly) made a ceremonial presentation of the ceremonial Samurai Sword to Takashi "cookedGoose" Shoda hoping he will see the light and do the honorable thing (and save them the next 26 iterations of studious meeting rituals).

So what have we, Nomura, another diligent, oriental Goliath had teams of gooks in suits swarming the financial capitals looking for thoroughly vetted deals and valuations when even the Arabs ( historically the second last to the party) finally realised that daft head gear and high oil prices does not add much to IQ and they had gotten these fine financial sector deals not because only they had money , but because only they had dumb money.(note: Luddic is currently doing detailed research into Arab and other cloth-head-geared-investors' investment talents and will shortly publish same)

So the Yellow Smart Money came into play yet again at Nomura ( historically, always on cue, and historically, always the last to the party) to "invest" in Iceland, Madoff, Lehman, RealEstate.. Merrill , name it and the wannabe Jap global opportunistic investment manager is there, loaded with the hard saving Japanese housewife's cash to shovel into another "Branded" deal making. ( Only brands will do, Japan understand only brands).. and promptly declared another $3.8 billion loss after paying all sorts of primates at Lehman their bonuses for last years circus feats.( In fact if I'm not wrong the head orangutan of Indian ops so endeared himself to the nips they took him back to Tokyo on a promotion to be part of the RealLargeLosers club at HO as befits his performance here )

As Luddic Research has long identified.. when the Japs start buying anything.. go short and go double short.. these well dressed gents from the east are here for a dose of some serious Acute Financial Pain which is an (little known but quickly spreading) Oriental sexual Fetish !!

Lately, I'm beginning to think the Japs just don't get and it's not just the language.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Satyam, Ethics and Platypus.

So the weeks toiled by as we watched our shorts happily run circles around the long term investors (who were taking full advantage of the amazing buying opportunity that seemed emerged and was visible only to them chosen few) .. while we lay back with a beer in the hand and toes in the sand.

Through oct/nov/dec of '08 the delinquents that flock the Indian financial markets kept themselves and their clients entertained and excited by strange bottom calling dances in different titillating tones that long term investors favor and excitedly pointed to the riches that lay just beyond the corner now that they'd called the bottom expertly and precisly. .but strangely the shorts still made money.

Of course every cabbie (and his maternal grandmother) in Mumbai knew that the worstIsBehindUs.. succour was at hand as come January 2009 the markets would rise and all would be hunky dory.

Half the planet was going .. worstIsBehindUs..worstIsBehindUs..worstIsBehindUs.. to their favored tune from their favored pulpit.. aah it was good to give solace to so many with these simple words..
The other half (of the planet) basically couldn't read and had no access to TV.. or they'd known too.

The US.. we all know that's where it's all at.. declared that the shit had failed to hit the fan and much rejoicing followed announcements by all kind of old fogeys and geriatrics who had, for years, confounded the masses with their stock picking skills , and such gents announced their investments and genius with amazing personal bottom calls (..on live TV sometimes).

Things were gung ho .. the US Govt. was in charge and (though a tad lacking in Iraq) the world felt good ex-Wallstreeters were running the show and would fix things in no time.. yup, time to partake the historic buying opportunity brilliantly identified by people who so obviously knew.

India, not to be left behind, took up the bugle call with gusto.. and soon the dormant dolts (local stock market experts) who'd been left looking morose and bereft for much of last year took up the baton and galloped around to whichever TV studio would have them, to announce yet again (so what) that the worstWasBehind and the time for selective buying was Now!! .. no matter nobody quite knew what this "selective" was.. but it sounded good and sharp expert.

Through the end of 2008 and first few days of 2009, a straggly bunch of bovines could again be seen heading for the bourses to much "expert" cajoling and prodding .. and the deeply underwater fund "managers" watched with cautious joy as they saw the oxen being herded in.. they needed relief.. the pain was bad.. how long can you keep markToMarkets, a la Madoff.. some had even started feeling some guilt..

No matter, the bull market would revive.. there was too much longTermStoryIntactness and too much IndianGrowthStory fundamentals to start getting worried about temporary events. they all told each other.. if not India where will capital go?

And all along Satyam( that beacon) was winning Global Golden Peacock awards for Corporate Governance.. aaaw shucks, though there was stiff competition from many, many other (strangely all Indian) equally worthy, well governed corporates.

So it is really no wonder the stars of global investing game(and fame) like Aberdeen Asset management and Fidelity were the proud owners of much stock of this high potential and multi awarded powerhouse.

Then the Satyam Chairman broke down one morning.
..brokerages with their tens of research "analysts" who diligently followed the stock and issued myriad "BUY" and "OUTPERFORM"s suddenly found themselves bent over and receiving.

At Luddic Research, one of the foremost zoological behavior research shops in India.. even the freshly inseminated mice embryos in our labs knew, Satyam and its mustachio wonder chairman Raju were professionals and ethical.. that much the embryos imbibed post fertilization.

As research grunts at Luddic quickly zeroed in from their regression digressions .. the Great Indian growth Story.. the DeCoupled econnomy theory.. the Infrastructure Boom lasting decades.. the promiscuous Indian middle classes' demand bonanza.. these were all concepts that germinated in the heads of certain pale skinned, farsighted and swashbuckling emerging markets' focused Platypus who quickly got the brown Indian looking at his future and prospects through the same duck billed (or bird snouted) outlook.

Overall, as Luddic's regressive digress proved .. most foreign fund managers and their cousins(read hedgeFund mgrs, PE boys) showed distinct traits very closely associated with the above mentioned Platypus flat foot..snouted.. ungainly walk.. webbed feet.

.. but what really clinched their classification on the Indian subContinent was simply their subsequent performance in the markets :

  • They lay eggs.. mammals but lay eggs. (egg== 0)
.. sadly, Darwinism is catching up and fast.

So Chairman Raju's tear stained letter also sent shivers down the multiple aspirants for the corporate governance awards in this pious land.. news emerges that most of the high growth boys, in this global profitability hot spot, have suddenly taken off to their favorite temples in their choppers for special cleansing rituals before they rewrite the carefully doctored exceededExpectationsYetAgain results they'd planned this quarter and tackle their suddenly chickening Auditors.

In fact the Industry body representing the top 20 houses in India plans to meet the govt. to plead for more time to un-Cook their books and warns that failure to do so can be catastrophic for Corporate profitability and India's long Term Growth targets.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Indian Corporates Update = I.C.U

Things got a little rough this friday.

Patient long Term Investors got a bit worried.. in fact Luddic Research has long laughed straight into the face of anyone who introduced himself (don't see many chicks in this game) as a long term investor.. so geddafuggoutt been the standard response followed by uncontrolled mirth whenever some pompous (and always bearing a loss on his investments) schmuckturd announced he was not worried.. it will recover.. he is in it for the long term.. fundamentals are still strong..

.. but even we were getting tired of laughing at these dull, pitiful fools and finally the Gurkha watchman downstairs was given strict orders not to let any long term investors in.. one grows sick of same old.. and these dullards could drive the Dalai Lama homicidal.

So, as I was saying these (formerly) amazing long term clairvoyants' simple minds got a little jolt in terms of faith and most promptly lined up at their favorite temples and deities' feet for a frenetic chanting session with bleets for mercy between every shloka.. O' mighty protector.. why this great test you put me through.. you know I suffer.. give me just one chance to breakeven.. I will never play the markets.. never watch cnbc.. never average down.. O' Lord.. just this time.. OK.. atleast give me a little bounce to exit least this much?

But what brought this sorry state about? Luddic Research points out to a deep underlying white man conspiracy to undermine the growing BRIC and especially the quickly emerging, brown global clout.
This became even more worrying to the western business world when even half witted, semi literate Indian promoters like Tulsi Tanti ( Suzlon) ,Kishore Biyani (Future group), G.Mallikakrjuna Rao (you guess right GMR), plethora of Real Estate tycoons.. as well as businessman Daddy's progeny like Ambani wunderBrothers, Kumarmangalam Birla, Ratan Tata, Vijay Mallya, exhibited multiple talents and core competencies far beyond any business leader ever to run Intel, GE, Microsoft, ABB, Unilever, CocaCola, IBM kind of small cap, small vision companies could fathom(leave alone envision and execute)..
..well these westerners plotted long and careful how to bring down these Incredible Indians crowding out the rest of the planet on the 10 richest persons list.

According to some reliable sources, these boys just plain pulled the money out when they knew it would hurt the brown man most.

And all along this country was jiving to the most popular tune in the nicely appointed offices of fund "managers" of various shapes, sizes and amazing hand shaking/networking techniques..

..the Indian growth story is Intact..the Indian economy is decoupled.. the Indian markets are decoupled.. the Real Estate prices go only Up in India..the growth rate will only get higher from now on.. the Index is going to 25,000.. and then to 28,000.. and finally 50,000 is now visible in the imminent future.. we will be rich and mighty and brilliant..we are decoupled.. we are decoupled..
.. this tune had everyone dancing and clapping and tears of sheer joy streamed down the more emotional fund managers cheeks.. privately, most of these fund managers realised they had underestimated their own worth in the previous plebian years.. Oh why did I live less brilliantly all these years.. anyway now I will not be denied my destiny.. yes, there will be a private jet someday(even that fool G.Mallikarjuna Rao has one)..oh yeah!!

Heady days to be in the fund management business in India, those were.. it did not matter what type of fund.. Hedge, FII, Mutual, PE, Prop,..hey even the local committee Fund you formed with your neighbours and uncles.. you were part of that WASPish(though brown) mastersOfUniverse you'd seen in Gordon Gekko.. and you worked hard to look the part..even their spouses started wondering if was the same dull sap she'd married!

(It got so bad that ordinary hand pumping, social networking, schmoozoids like our bearded accountant Ashok Wadhwa(Ambit) felt left out of the loop entirely, quickly floated a money management gimmick and felt it important to pull favors with CNBC to announce his view (..whotf is really interested in that, really) that the market looked close to bottom and would not go below 14,000 in any case.( looks like a bad start Ashok, eh?)

No summary of Indian Fund managers is complete without mentioning the sheer number of fools ICICI has released into the Indian fund management scene where their bull market genuis just pyramided incessantly into higher and higher positions( and a rather faster rate of higher self esteem and self worth) that made these gaboons some of the largest participants in the Great Indian Funds story permeating every organisation in some position and cluelessness.
(The latest and greatest example is JP Morgan's new CEO.. of course not to blame for it's coming ills ..she just joined for crisssake.. but she was heard expounding immediately on her plans to grow JP Morgan as far as her eye could see double true ICICI alumni fashion).

But what about the real drivers of the great Indian Growth Story?
The assorted bunch of "promoters" and "family run" tycoons who leapt from oblivion into global "smart" money destinations .. who were shown charts extrapolating their growth well into the ceiling by the very westernised "smart" money smooth knowalls.. slowly it is dawning on these yoyopreneurs their go getting drive is got up and gone.. and it is time to take a hard look at the books. The books are suddenly looking increasingly messy and piled with large debts and much larger urgently required (and completely unavailable) funding.. and the fact the asset side is piled with such crap at such valuations that only blind monkeys who passed accountancy are willing to sign off these books(though extracting dozens of bananas more now).
Seriously denting the announced growth plans of the "promoters" is that the only believers left in company balance sheets are the research analysts from vernacularly headed and named brokerages or the public transport commuting regulatory officers.

You know things are bad when you realise the Ambani boys have not announced a single multi-billion project in a completely unconnected industry for the past 10 days.. that is scary..

It is shocking that the market did not get weak kneed with schoolgirl delight when Reliance Industries unveiled the latest cooking extravaganza of profit growths etc. etc. at twice the industry average with lovely chutzpah.. the bovines actually got selling this stock..never fear, Muckesh is gonna settle some scores monday.. we hear he was forced to fork out Rs.1400 for a chunk of carefully planned increase in stake (as usual, much lower than market price for instant gain, when it was decided by the board) and cannot stand being played at his own game market puts him out of pocket by Rs. 400 , eh.. he is gonna show who's the Daddy now.

Junior ofcourse has his work cut out after bravely announcing Reliance Energy(now Infra) buyback at Rs.1400 a while back .. being forced to buy at Rs.1100 + as they had to sheepishly confess and blink back tears as shares disappeared below Rs.400.. all that buyback cash gone poof.
A-nil is ofcourse dodging calls from a certain Spielberg over at Hollywood who wants to know when is the $500 million turning up and recently making unflattering comments about third world wannabes trying to get into the white glamour scene..when they cannot pony up the cash.. what else you need these suckers for.

Also looks like Junior's plans to buy an English football club may have to be postponed till be can run up his various ventures' share prices up.. it's not easy to stay in the 10 richest men of the world .. that this wunderbrother pair have realised.

About our Real Estate "promoters" and their comical overseas moneybags .. let's just say "Property prices in India are not coming down" is the official word and these orangutans are giving sleepless nights to the usually smug and confidently forging ahead Private Equity types whose grasp of ground realities is scaring the privates out of them.

The captain of this floundering ship, our own Finance minister has taken to putting on his best starched whites, shawl on his shoulder , hair dyed a debonair black and spending long hours in TV studios rather than the minstry trying to exhort the unwashed masses to buy some stocks .. or at least do not sell.. as he put it plainly.. every seller should realise that each time he sells someone is buying.. ( well greatIndianGrowthStory types have been buying intelligently all the way down from 21,000 index levels).
His latest ministerial feat, delivered with his customary elan was this account on thursday.. that he'd personally called the (shaking with adulation) Chiefs of 7 main public sector banks and told them to "lend aggressively".. to anything that had a pulse.. and the Chairmen had assured him to a man .. they were just waiting for a potential borrower to walk in ..Oh yes Sir,yes Minister.

As usual .. this is the bottom ..yup, the fundamentals of this country remain strong.. yawn.

p.s. coming soon..
Indian Funds Update = I.F.U

Sunday, October 12, 2008


This amazingly clear thinking article was written in sept 2003!!

Today, we realised how many quadrillion times more painful it has been for the (very small percentage..very) thinking Americans than for us thinking Indians to watch the fools run our respective countries and economies amok... we are after all third world..and probably deserve such bankers/RBIs/SEBIs /Finance Ministers/ Mutual fund managers/ Portfolio managers/ Financial advisors etc.

Sometimes you feel the financial rewards of separating these fools from their money is not reward enough for being right.. compared to the anger you feel at the clueless schmucks still spouting drivel from their behinds..
Oh yes, the worst is over !!.. again!!

2 points from the article:
1. The Great Indian Growth Story seem to have taken off largely due to US Fed's largest monetary expansion in history.. and at the worst possible stage of a Big Kondatrieff cycle.
2. The Great Indian Growth Story now starts looking like the Great Indian Rope Trick.

Finally a little comfort:
Finance minister P.Chidambaram is working on urgent Govt. bailouts for the following key pillars of Indian La-La Land on whom the growth story hinges:

  • Real Estate Companies: All firms with more than 2000 half-finished, semi-finished or even half planned projects across the country whose old loans are long overdue and cannot get fresh loans and have no more PE suitors and whose share prices have fallen over 70 % and who haven't sold anything in last 2 months BUT who have not reduced prices at all.
  • InfraStructure companies : Who have projects in every nook and corner of the development phase and have no lenders in sight and whose PE investors come for meetings in wheel chairs and who have no basic qualifications and who have lofty aspirations for Nuclear projects and (this one is strange) who belong to Andhra Pradesh state (as our hero G.Mallikarjun Rao of GMR).
  • Private Sector Banks: All banks in this sector who have been worthy pillars of the immense wealth creation last year who unfortunately now need to show some profits(or hide losses better) and whose growth is coming back to bite their butts and whose global plans show distinct bag holder status and whose management is infested with ambitious, equal oppurtunity program fallouts and whose loans dot the countryside with worthy borrowers and whose CEOs exhibit youthful good looks.
This step is reqd as the global FIIs and PE funds have been complaining about their horrible, horrible losses due to unsophisticated "investor" behavior lately..making it difficult to keep their faith in India's Growth Story (and more importantly their jobs).

..Who can forget the swelling of pride Indians felt when the minister sagely dissected the US financial turmoil at Davos .."It was a regulatory failure."
..and promptly proceeded to get Indian banks to cut Interest rates on his return.

Lastly , from our DRIP stable .. comes the reassuring sounds of the far thinking Chanda Kocchar of ICICI Bank pronounces yesterday:
"The NPA levels continue to remain where they have been even in the last quarter. Even as we report earnings for Q2, you will not see anything untoward as far as the NPAs are concerned."

"As far as NPAs are concerned, we are not seeing any increase in it, and the corporate sector profitability is still holding up and the repayment and payment obligations are all coming absolutely on time. So, on that count there shouldn’t be a worry at all.
..All I can say is if the legal framework was halfway as effective as the US .. she would have thought twice before incriminating herself like this.

But this is India and the Growth stories remain Intact for very long ..thanks to the Decoupling.

Also as usual .. Again it is too late to sell now.. let it recover a little bit.. just a little.. pls GOD!!

Monday, October 6, 2008

The Sarah Palins of ICICI bank

The current banking turmoil has been especially hard on western female bankers who had built stylish little careers and lifestyles wafting cluelessly amongst less pretty male counterparts.

..but alas, style and intelligent sounding drivel only works in bull markets when quite a few bankers are diagnosed with abnormally large brain cells that explains their enhanced financial acumen.. and such visions somehow evaporate at the end of bull markets.

Lovelies such as Erin Callan, Zoe Cruz, Sallie Krawchek.. are sorely missed for their exceptional skills, strategic vision and grasp of this faltering sector.. but even more for objective reasons.

Let us be clear.. these stylish things are confined to the banking world and their skirts have graced no trading seats except as talented "managers" of trading teams and stunning, exciting meetings they presided over. It was all very very stimulating.

Luddic Research reports an interesting analysis of the factors that make women get raises (and in turn makes them rise) in Wall Street's "high" finance and present a convincing argument how Sarah Palin would undoubtedly have risen far above three and possibly higher because of her (GodBlessHer) disconnect from reality and simple questions.. also her "doggone it" style would make it virtually impossible to fire or demote her.. since his decisions were mostly God's will.. and there is a litter of five(and a sixth derivatve) to feed..

But she has the rallyTheTroops talents to boldly make Grand asinine decisions and megalo visions that would put many a banker to shame.

Coming back to our local banking femmes, who though severely looks challenged have nevertheless dutifully tried to grace the financial pages with their vision and grasp of the banking /financial exploits and achievements.

Few months back Luddic Research had identified ICICI bank as a worthy torchbearer of the Great Indian DRIP Story that would eclipse the BRIC folly in short order .

There was this truly gifted leader KV Kamath of many talents and evergreen matinee idol looks who by some strange twist ended up running a bank instead of singing/ dancing around trees in romantic Bollywood musicals.

As expected, not one to let dull banking offices dim his magnetic attractiveness, he quickly embarked upon a mission to surround himself by female managers of all hues and their vision to think beyond their makeup and saris. It greatly helped that the bevy of financial birds surrounding his jet black hair added zest to all official gatherings, conferences and Industry meets that this visionaries from ICICI came to spend most of their waking hours gracing.. sure beat dull number crunching back in the cubicle.

So the growth trajectory of ICICI was clearly dominated by market share/growth/ think Big kind of excitement that just saw opportunity in any thing that walked or had a pulse .The game was to grow so fast and furiously that the nobody could ever calculate how much bad loans, capitalized expenses , NPAs etc. were buried under the ever piling books.
.. the rate of growth had to ensure nobody within the bank(much less a regulator or analyst) would ever be able to figure out the real profit (using the term very loosely) since inception.

This bank quickly caught the fancy of young and old, big and small, native and foreign.. wow.. what a growth trajectory and, what a visionary (and youthful) management team..The Indian growth story soon became synonymous with this bank and its conspiciously feminine Generals who rushed in where male bankers feared to lend.

The assortment of Chanda Kocchars, Kalpana Morparias, Renuka Ramanathans and such became household legends in this country for their far reaching insights and ability to shovel cash out into the countryside..

The corporate strategy meetings were fairly brief and everyone was totally on the same page:
.. mostly a session of complementing the management on their looks , jewelry and dresses(where did you get that.. very pretty!!) was towards the end punctuated with the agenda..
..OK that's decided now 12,000 new ATMs this year, 4500 new branches this KingFisher airlines to go global (airlines are the best users of our cash, we loooove Vijay Mallya .. he's dashing and dashes we couldn't find a bigger lemon than this airlines) .. lend to every car, house, salaried, two wheeler, Freddie, Fannie, Lehman , Builder, Construction company, SME this country has or if the growth targets falling short .. create these borrowers from the country side.. India is woefully under borrowed.

.. it got to a point that if anyone in the world (yes word got out) wanted to borrow and had difficulty answering some fairly simple questions .. he knew some ladies in India who had growth plans to match and cash to burn.. all he needed to do was answer some fairly simple questions at Sarah Palin's altitude and walk out with the cash.

Small wonder the bank seems to be involved in "offshore subsidiaries" who seem to have a little subPrime problem..

.. and the bank seem to be holding realEstate assets and such loans (at cost ofcourse) that reach into the furthest corners of the India.

..and the bank seems to have millions of lovely grass roots type of two wheeler and small loans which will likely pass on to next generation of original borrowers(and collection agents) before fully repayment.

.. and of course the housing loans book of ICICI bank across the country to strictly deserving applicants has proudly been hailed as the single biggest reason for unlocking the value in the Indian Real Estate sector which had for previous 50 years remained locked and hidden .

But sadly , the current turmoil has not gone down well in the envisaged growth plans of the Bank and unless quickly rectified by large Govt. bailouts, threatens to reveal certain accounting gymnastics at ICICI that could quickly disturb the composure and the hairStyle of KV Kamath.. and the confident noises Ms.Chanda Kocchar has been making to scotch any rumours.

For starters Ms.Kalpana Morparia has hopped across to JP Morgan (good timing surely!) and quickly announced grandiose ICICI style plans for expansion there.. much as in fashion of clueless American firms trying to monetise the enigmatic growth story of India that every one is sure of and can sense but nobody can actually pin it down. (When was the last time a white man actually took some profit out of an "emerging markets" ?.. tho we are not complaining ;)

So as all the other DRIP pillars have wilted these past months .. ICICI in that ingrained, go-getting manner has gone for the floodgates where others merely dripped.

What Kamath missed in his zest for youthful self-image and quest for visionary sounding legacy, was that you just cannot rustle up girls from the countryside and perch them in nice offices in Mumbai to do anything more useful than answering the phone or adding color to offsites.. no matter how debonair your looks or how dark your hair.

As per Luddic Research , the true measure of robust health and vitality in any company ( especially Banking) is inversely proportional to the percentage of top management coloring their hair artificially to bolster market share through misdirected Libido..

..just don't work.

Lastly, there is a rumor gaining ground here that ICICI bank is really an American Bank.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Morgan Stanley & Monsoon Capital : Feathers flying & Turkeys trying.

For quite a while now, we have been keeping a steady eye on this global zoological bunch who've managed to pass off as a finance and investment firm wherein the careful eye did reveal a while back , the startling underlying reality that it was a bird pen for largish, puffy birds who loved to dress as suits.

Since those early days , the seeming success of these orniths ( distinctive for their awkward gait and useless views) despite their odd practice of providing every MD's cabin with private sand-box to immerse his head and views in those head-y days..oh yes!..we confess.. MS Ostriches and Monsoon Capital's Turkeys made it look so easy that we floated our own little UnHedged fund.. to try and ease the pain of cashConstipation so many Indian bulls seemed to be suffering from .. they needed relief and one which ensured they never be put into that pain again..the poor suffering bulls needed a cash enema..and needed it hard.

So we did copy their model a bit, yes.. but improved on their feathered fetish with a more hirsute pursuit.. and have to admit the westAfrican Baboons have wildly exceeded our X.

But recently the softly humming, big bird beehive of smooth, oblivious and cluelessly unflappable activity that was the hallmark of Morgan Stanley's investment genuis in this country, started showing alarming signs of disarray and disruptions and you can understand the sand and feathers flying around in downtown Mumbai's financial district can cause even the most longTermStoryIntact bulls to look up nervously from their plodding..yup, the flying feathers and large flightless birds in suits suddenly didn't look right.. especially when visitors reported the MDs' new ritual of collectively putting their heads together and in into the central sandBox at the Head Office for the entire trading hours.. the rumours were now rife..could these really be Chimps pretending to be Ostriches??..gimme a break.. just the markets overshooting again.

Though on a positive note, Monsoon Capital seems to have put together another India specific fund from entirely fresh crop of investors and plans to expoit the fantastic new Inflection emerging in this country.

As we had noted in March:

"The Monsoon India Inflection Fund LP has dropped 28.3% this month, through March 20. That leaves it down 45.9% so far in 2008, Prakash wrote in an update to investors. MarketWatch obtained a copy of the letter."
..and Gautam Prakash, one of the sharpest turk(ey)s in this business, quick learner from mistakes that he is, is aptly naming his new attempt as the "Monsoon India Deflection Fund LP" deflect any disgruntled criticism or attempts to enforce prior claims .

..smells like some American largeBird Flu, if you ask me..

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Indian stocks bottom again !!

As most every half wit knows, India is a great long term fact a fantastic opportunity that is evident to everyone and their portfolio managers.. a certainty..clear as day.

So, what now ails the "smart" money from getting onto this gravy train.. especially when it was this very "smart" money that enlightened the clueless natives about the glorious economic future that lay ahead .

So the foreign "smart" money came in plane loads.. saw the crowds around the airports.. smelt a mega opportunity.. met up with the "promoters" and convinced the poor saps to look beyond their quick buck, corner cutting, short termist, scummy businessman outlook and get a little "professionalized", "corporatized", "organized" and soon "private Equitized".

So the ordinary Indian Business Galoot suddenly sat up and started pestering his staff to quickly tell him how much was a million dollar in rupee lacs rupee crores.. this started looking good from his angle.
For years he had had to bribe, fleece, lie , beg and finally cheat and steal from his share holders and unsympathetic bankers( the salaried class ha!) to fund his gaming the system and suddenly these young "smart" money foreigner gents ( who obviously knew something he didn't ) wanted to throw easy cash at him and his "business" at lovely "valuations" that only they could calculate oh sooo accurately.. it just excited him.

And thus the great Indian growth story was on.

Everyone and his neighbour got this "smart" money in their companies.. at ever more exciting "valuations" and "stakes".. and they even pitted some "smart" money against each other ( so much "smart" money and so little time) to bid that wee more naughty "valuation".. oooh it was heady.

..And then suddenly the "smart" money which had been confidently and in suitably impressive tones been sermonizing on the equally impressive reasons why India was "decoupled" from turmoil back home .. this same "smart" money quickly lost that knowledgeable sheen to plunge to panicked hen levels shockingly naive even vis-a-vis the retail investor losers who'd succumbed earlier to loss of faith in the Long term.
To be fair the "smart" money boys did hold on to InForTheLongHaul song and dance for as long as their religious faiths allowed (and some faithfuls hold on even till today) .. but it does get difficult to hold onto the original positions after being fired from your firm or (as increasingly seen lately) the entire "smart" money firm going under, in this completely unforeseen Emerging Markets' mess.. gets a little tough to finance Indian real estate companies in these circumstances.

And that seems likely what ails the smart money.

Now fortunately ..and after a long 2 week gap of no "analyst" and market "expert" calling a market bottom.. we have had some sane voices explain in serious tones that the worst seem to be over as far as the Indian stocks are concerned and they do not expect further down moves..

This is a big relief as many of our clients have had trouble sleeping without being able to find a single reassuaring voice after all day of scanning news and TV to confirm their hope that this looks like the bottom.. you know these poor "investors" have been holding onto their stock "investments" since Sensex 19,500 that it cannot go lower and no point selling now..after this much fall.

Well we have been busy at Luddic Research at our UnHedged Fund what with hiring and training a couple more west African Baboons to expand our core Research team and as these two specialise in special situation shorts, their dart throws have just handily beat the market ever since.

Finally further to our latest discussions with Prashant Bhatia, the analyst virtuoso over at CitiGroup .. it is likely he will join our fledgling Unhedged Fund in the newly created important position of the Chief decoyTurkey for holding forth in the financial media about the Indian Banking sector and sometimes regaling the girls with his historic US banking upGrade calls that are now folklore..notably Lehman Brothers..We got us a legend !!

Lastly, we are now a bit worried about India's first authentic Warren Buffet , who modestly confessed he has never lost money in stocks (surpassed Warren too here).. is a bit missing in action for past few months .. and his lovely face and priceless pearls are no longer being cast in the financial media.. hope all is well..since no corpulent bulls on TV means no sustainable bull moves in Indian stocks.

But then Rakesh Jhunjhunwala knows Sensex will be 25,000 by 2010 and 50,000 in 5-6 years.. so why worry about this short term noise.. eh?

Though,we thank the lord the Bottom is finally reached again..was getting a little rough.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Great Indian BandWagon Jam.

Currently, there looks like a bit of a gridlock in the various Indian investment bandwagons' traffic.

It has been rather trying in the recent past for the captains of various bandwagons(even hand carts reported) to keep together the flock of believing "investors" and roll the wagons towards the heady future ( filled with pelf and prosperity) that looms ahead for any "long term" believer.
In fact, most annoyingly, these formerly docile "investors" have lately been behaving like a bunch of frightened hens leaping off the bandwagons with exaggerated flapping of wings and loud squawking at the slightest hint of market downturn. This is in sharp contrast to the saner days witnessed in this "fundamental" wonderland even a couple of months back when any slowing attracted even more "investors" to leap onto the Bandwagons from the sidelines.. hell if the rural rustics were hesitant or bashful, there were plenty of foreign "investors" wanting a ride into town.. good times loomed large just ahead !

And now .. all the BandWagons..the "growthStory" bandwagon, the "fundamental" bandwagon, the "value emerging" bandwagon, the "decoupled" bandwagon, the "landBank" bandwagon, the BRIC bandwagon, the "retail play" bandwagon, the "realEstate" bandwagon, the "infrastructure play " bandwagon.. all, but all bandwagons are having trouble keeping even the longest-term-outlook hens onboard.. and we confirm witnessing leaps executed by considerably weakened and frail "investors" off above bandwagons at considerable loss of limb and dignity totter off into the bushes for much more sedentry lives.

What tugs at the heart strings is the degree to which aspirations of the nation and its entire financial community ( alongwith their former captive flocks) have deflated in hope and scope.

What has definitely aggravated the disruption of the careful travel schedules of these above bandwagons has been the disturbing and widepread discoveries that virtually all such bandwagons, originally thought to being piloted by finely attired and glib Clairvoyants, turned out to be OPM (Other People's Money) smokers who all along had had their heads up a certain orifice which offered an entirely cocooned and comforting world view of their abilities and worth.. these new revelations have derailed some rolling momentum, yes.

So the ordinary "investors" ( let's be clear here.. these are investors who believe in the long term camp and are not some ornery, short termist kind of gambling punters looking to make quick large profits in double quick times ) were surprisingly left holding the proverbial bags and sitting on suddenly uncomfortable bandwagons with increasingly ludicrous looking pilots whose natty attire no longer glossed over the fact where he (yup.. all He here) got his insider insights from.. and it left the investor disturbingly disturbed about his (recently golden) future.

Well the entire country's roads today are strewn with every variety of bandwagon in various stages of breakdown and disrepair with the pilots/drivers looking much the worse after being extricated from their self-absorbed, internally fulfilling OPM orgies...suddenly exposed to harsh sunlight .. and it is plainly traumatic.

The "experts" again see the valuations as very realistic and tons of sideline money is going to come into play and the bandwagons will roll again and .. and much merriment will ensue.. but one gets the worrying impression about the bandWagons looking more like clownWagons.. complete with corny uniforms and hats.. and headed nowhere!!

..but reassuringly , the sidelines are even more crowded now with all that cash(oooh yes..) ..waiting to rescue the markets.
Remember, we are all Long Term now.

Say it together now..
Long Term investors have nothing to fear.