|Our estimates||Management estimates|
|Accumulated Net Profit from 2P Reserves||RM 1.452 billion||RM 1.468 billion|
|FY20||FY21 (incl. 2C)||Difference|
|Daily oil production (bbl/day)||8,626||14,400||+66%|
|Average oil price (USD/bbl)||$68.57||$50||-27%|
|Average OPEX/bbl (USD)||$16.64||$20||+20%|
|EBITDA (RM ‘m)||632||630||-|
The Report from Iron MountainThe Report from Iron Mountain is a book, published in 1967 (during the Johnson Administration) by Dial Press, that states that it is the report of a government panel.
"The colonies suffered a constant shortage of currency with which to conduct trade. There were no gold or silver mines and currency could only be obtained through trade as regulated by Great Britain. Many of the colonies felt no alternative to printing their own paper money in the form of Bills of Credit."The result was a true free market of currency - each bank competed, exchange rates fluctuated wildly, and merchants were hesitant to accept these notes as payment.
"The existing banks will, without a doubt, enter into arrangements for lending their agency, and the more favorable, as there will be a competition among them for it; whereas the bill delivers us up bound to the national bank, who are free to refuse all arrangement, but on their own terms, and the public not free, on such refusal, to employ any other bank" –Thomas Jefferson.Basically, the existing banks will fight over gaining favor with the central bank - rather than improving their performance relative to a free market.The profit margins associated with collusion would obviously outweigh the potential profits gained from legitimate business.
"If Knickerbocker Trust would falter, then Congress and the public would lose faith in all trust companies and banks would stand to gain, the bankers reasoned."In timing with natural economic cycles, major banks including J.P. Morgan and Chase launched an all-out assault on Heinze's Knickerbocker Trust.
"During the Panic of 1907, "Depositors 'run' on the Knickerbocker Bank. J.P. Morgan and James Stillman of First National City Bank (Citibank) act as a "central bank," providing liquidity ... [to stop the bank run] President Theodore Roosevelt provides Morgan with $25 million in government funds ... to control the panic. Morgan, acting as a one-man central bank, decides which firms will fail and which firms will survive."How did JP Morgan get so powerful that the government would provide them with funding to increase their power? They had key influence with positions inside the Administrations.
"...it would have been fatal to Senator Aldrich's plan to have it known that he was calling on anybody from Wall Street to help him in preparing his bill...I do not feel it is any exaggeration to speak of our secret expedition to Jekyll Island as the occasion of the actual conception of what eventually became the Federal Reserve System."At Jekyll Island, the true draftsman for the Federal Reserve was Paul Warburg. The plan was simple.
America - From Freedom to Fascism The Money Masters Monopoly Men (below video):VID
After January's strong jobs report calmed some recession fears, investors will be picking through the next wave of earnings reports and economic data for clues on just how much the U.S. economy could be slowing.
Dozens of earnings, from companies like Alphabet, Disney and Eli Lily, report in the week ahead, and there are just a few economic reports like trade data and ISM services on Tuesday. Investors will also be watching the outcome of Treasury auctions for $84 billion in Treasury notes and bonds Tuesday through Thursday, after the Fed's dovish tone helped put a lid on interest rates in the past week.
Nearly half the S&P 500 companies had reported for the fourth quarter by Friday morning, and 71 percent beat earnings estimates, while 62 percent have beaten revenue estimates. But earnings growth forecasts for the first quarter continue to decline as more companies report, and they are currently barely breaking even at under 1 percent growth, versus the 15 percent growth in the fourth quarter, according to Refinitiv.
"Granted the more we hear from companies, and particularly in terms of their guidance and projections on revenues, things can slowly change. The first thing companies do is they stop spending money. Cap spending slows down, and if revenue growth does not pick up, they let people go. This is still wait and see," said Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist at Prudential Financial.
Krosby said the 304,000 jobs added in January did ease some concerns about a slowing economy, as did a stronger than expected ISM manufacturing report Friday. But the view of the first quarter is still unclear, as many economic reports were missed during the government shutdown. Economists expect growth in the first quarter of just above 2 percent, after growth of about 2.9 percent in the fourth quarter.
Stocks closed out January with a sharp gain on Thursday, and started February on Friday on a flattish note. The S&P 500 has rebounded about 15 percent from its Dec. 24 closing low. Last month's 7.9 percent gain was the best performance for January in more than 30 years. The old Wall Street adage says 'so goes January, so goes the year.' If that holds, stocks could finish 2019 higher. But February is another story, and on average, it is a flat month for the S&P 500.
"The tug of war that you saw in the market, that was going on in the last half of last year is playing out in the data. Some of the data is a bit lower, but some of the economic surprises are picking up to the upside rather than downside," said Krosby.
Peter Boockvar, chief investment strategist at Bleakley Advisory Group, said the ISM may have improved but it reflected very low exports and flat backlogs, even though there was a snap back in new orders.
"I would fade the jobs report," said Boockvar, noting the level of growth may have been inflated by government workers taking on part-time jobs during the government shutdown.
Boocvkar said the jobs report also looked strong on the surface, but he's concerned the unemployment rate ticked up to 4 percent from 3.9 percent.
"The question of whether we go into a recession or not is how does the stock market affect confidence?" Boockvar said. Confidence readings in the past week were low, and consumer sentiment Friday was its lowest since before President Donald Trump took office.
Krosby said stocks could test recent lows or put in a higher low. If there's a big selloff, "That would not necessarily mean it was a clue a recession is coming. It's just a normal testing mechanism," she said.
The Fed removed a big concern from the markets in the past week, when its post-meeting statement and Fed Chairman Jerome Powell's briefing tilted dovish, assuring markets the Fed would pause in its interest rate hiking. Investors had feared the Fed would hurt the softening economy with its rate hikes. Now, the biggest fears are about the trade war between the U.S. and China and slowing Chinese growth.
The jobs report, and the ISM manufacturing data were also important because the lack of data during the government's 35 day shutdown has left gaps in the economic picture.
"This is really a sign the Fed stole the thunder from the economic data. By saying they're patient plasters over any kind of economic data in the near term, and I suspect the near term lasts through the first quarter because of the government shutdown, the weather, weak GDP," said Marc Chandler, chief market strategist at Bannockburn Global Forex.
Chandler said the markets will be hanging on any news on the trade talks with China. "Even if it's not the all encompassing trade deal we were promised, it's a return to where we were before with China promising to buy energy and farm products. We'll continue to have some kind of talks with the China, like we had under Obama and Bush," said Chandler.
What a year it has been. After the worst December for stocks in 87 years that contributed to the worst fourth quarter since the 2008–09 financial crisis, stocks have bounced back in spectacular fashion. In fact, with a day to go, stocks are looking at their best first month of the year in 30 years.
What could happen next? “We like to say that the easy 10% has been made off the lows and the next 10% will be much tougher,” explained LPL Senior Market Strategist Ryan Detrick. “Things like Fed policy, China uncertainty, and overall global growth concerns all will play a part in where equity markets go from here.”
With the S&P 500 Index about 10% away from new highs, we do think new highs are quite possible at some point this year. Positive news from the Federal Reserve (Fed) and China trade talks, as well as the realization by investors that the odds of a recession in 2019 are quite low could spark potential new highs. Remember, fiscal spending as a percentage of overall gross domestic product (GDP) is higher this year than it was last year. Many think the tax cut and fiscal policies in play last year were a one-time sugar high. We don’t see it that way and expect the benefits from fiscal policy to help extend this economic cycle at least another year—likely more.
As we head into February, note that it hasn’t been one of the best months for stocks. In fact, as our LPL Chart of the Day shows, since 1950, February has been virtually flat, and over the past 20 years only June and September have shown worse returns. Overall, the market gains have been quite impressive since the December 24 lows, but we wouldn’t be surprised at all to see a near-term consolidation or pullback.
Investors have increasingly positioned for a Federal Reserve (Fed) pause, which could portend a shift in fixed income markets. Fed fund futures are pricing in about a 70% probability that the Fed will keep rates unchanged for the rest of 2019, and the market’s dovish tilt has weighed on short-term rates.
As shown in the LPL Chart of the Day, the 2-year yield has typically followed the fed funds rate since policymakers began raising rates in December 2015. While we expect one or two more hikes this cycle, there is a possibility that the Fed’s December hike was its last, which will likely cap short-term rates.
If the Fed pauses, the curve will likely reverse course and steepen as solid economic growth and quickening (but manageable) inflation drives longer-term yields higher. As mentioned in our Outlook 2019, FUNDAMENTAL: How to Focus on What Really Matters in the Markets, we’re forecasting the 10-year Treasury yield will increase significantly from current levels and trade within a range of 3.25–3.75% in 2019.
“We remain optimistic about U.S. economic growth prospects, and recent data show inflation remains at manageable levels,” said LPL Research Chief Investment Strategist John Lynch. “Because of this, we expect the data-dependent Fed to be less aggressive than initially feared, as policymakers juggle these factors with the impacts of trade tensions and tepid global growth.”
To be clear, investors shouldn’t fear a flattening yield curve given the backdrop of solid economic growth and modest inflation. Historically, the yield curve has remained relatively flat or inverted for years before some recessions started. Since 1970, the United States has entered a recession an average of 21 months after the yield curve inverted.
Jobless claims have dropped to a 49-year low. Based on historical trends, this could signal that a U.S. economic recession is further off than many expect.
Data released January 24 showed jobless claims fell to 199K in the week ending January 18, the lowest number since 1969 and far below consensus estimates of 218K. As shown in the LPL Chart of the Day, current jobless claims have been significantly lower than those in the 12-month periods preceding each recession since the early 1970s.
“Last week’s jobless claims print was particularly impressive given the partial government shutdown and weakening corporate sentiment,” said LPL Research Chief Investment Strategist John Lynch. “The U.S. labor market remains strong and will help buoy consumer health and output growth this year.”
Other predictive data sets have signaled U.S. recessionary odds are low. Data last week showed the Conference Board’s Leading Economic Index (LEI), based on 10 leading economic indicators (like jobless claims, manufacturers’ new orders, and stock prices), grew 4.3% year over year in December. In contrast, the LEI has turned negative year over year before all economic recessions since 1970. Because of its solid predictive ability, the LEI is a component of our Recession Watch Dashboard.
Most major U.S. stock indexes rallied to new recovery and year-to-date highs today shrugging off some misses and weakness from Microsoft, DuPont and Visa. S&P 500 finished the month strong with a 7.9% gain. This is the best S&P January since 1987. This is also the third January Trifecta in a row.
Last year the S&P 500 crumbled in the fourth quarter under the weight of triple threats from a hawkish and confusing Fed, a newly divided Congress and the U.S. trade battle with China, finishing in the red. 2017’s Trifecta was followed by a full-year gain of 19.4%, including a February-December gain of 17.3%. As you can see in the table below, the long term track record of the Trifecta is rather impressive, posting full-year gains in 27 of the 30 prior years with an average gain for the S&P 500 of 17.1%.
Devised by Yale Hirsch in 1972, the January Barometer has registered ten major errors since 1950 for an 85.5% accuracy ratio. This indicator adheres to propensity that as the S&P 500 goes in January, so goes the year. Of the ten major errors Vietnam affected 1966 and 1968. 1982 saw the start of a major bull market in August. Two January rate cuts and 9/11 affected 2001.The market in January 2003 was held down by the anticipation of military action in Iraq. The second worst bear market since 1900 ended in March of 2009 and Federal Reserve intervention influenced 2010 and 2014. In 2016, DJIA slipped into an official Ned Davis bear market in January. Including the eight flat years yields a .739 batting average.
Our January Indicator Trifecta combines the Santa Claus Rally, the First Five Days Early Warning System and our full-month January Barometer. The predicative power of the three is considerably greater than any of them alone; we have been rather impressed by its forecasting prowess. This is the 31st time since 1949 that all three January Indicators have been positive and the twelfth time (previous eleven times highlighted in grey in table below) this has occurred in a pre-election year.
Even though February is right in the middle of the Best Six Months, its long-term track record, since 1950, is not all that stellar. February ranks no better than seventh and has posted paltry average gains except for the Russell 2000. Small cap stocks, benefiting from “January Effect” carry over; tend to outpace large cap stocks in February. The Russell 2000 index of small cap stocks turns in an average gain of 1.1% in February since 1979—just the seventh best month for that benchmark.
In pre-election years, February’s performance generally improves with average returns all positive. NASDAQ performs best, gaining an average 2.8% in pre-election-year Februarys since 1971. Russell 2000 is second best, averaging gains of 2.5% since 1979. DJIA, S&P 500 and Russell 1000, the large-cap indices, tend to lag with average advances of around 1.0%.
7%? Bulls will take it! After an abysmal December, the S&P 500 is currently set to finish the month with its best January return since 1987. This month’s gain will mark the 16th time since the lows of the Financial Crisis in March 2009 that the S&P 500 has rallied more than 5% in a given month. The table below highlights each of the 15 prior months where the S&P 500 rallied more than 5% and shows how much the S&P 500 gained on the month as well as its performance on the last trading day of the month and the first trading day of the subsequent month.
When looking at the table, a few things stand out. First, the first trading day of a month that follows a month where the S&P 500 rallied more than 5% has been extremely positive as the S&P 500 averages a gain of 0.84% (median: 1.01%) with positive returns 13 out of 15 times! In addition to the positive tendency of markets on the first day of the new month, there has also been a clear tendency for the S&P 500 to decline on the last trading day of the strong month. The average decline on the last trading day of a strong month has been 0.09% with positive returns less than half of the time. This is no doubt related to the fact that funds are forced to rebalance out of equities to get back inline with their benchmark weights. However, on those five prior months where the S&P 500 bucked the trend and was positive on the last trading day of a 5%+ month, the average gain on the first trading day of the next month was even stronger at 1.52% with gains five out of six times.
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([CLICK HERE FOR FRIDAY'S AFTER-MARKET EARNINGS TIME & ESTIMATES!]())NONE.
Alphabet, Inc. (GOOGL) is confirmed to report earnings at approximately 4:05 PM ET on Monday, February 4, 2019. The consensus earnings estimate is $11.08 per share on revenue of $31.28 billion and the Earnings Whisper ® number is $11.03 per share. Investor sentiment going into the company's earnings release has 71% expecting an earnings beat. Consensus estimates are for year-over-year earnings growth of 14.23% with revenue decreasing by 3.23%. Short interest has decreased by 6.6% since the company's last earnings release while the stock has drifted higher by 6.7% from its open following the earnings release to be 0.7% below its 200 day moving average of $1,127.05. Overall earnings estimates have been revised lower since the company's last earnings release. On Thursday, January 24, 2019 there was some notable buying of 1,493 contracts of the $1,200.00 call expiring on Friday, February 15, 2019. Option traders are pricing in a 5.2% move on earnings and the stock has averaged a 3.8% move in recent quarters.
Twitter, Inc. (TWTR) is confirmed to report earnings at approximately 7:00 AM ET on Thursday, February 7, 2019. The consensus earnings estimate is $0.25 per share on revenue of $871.59 million and the Earnings Whisper ® number is $0.29 per share. Investor sentiment going into the company's earnings release has 73% expecting an earnings beat. Consensus estimates are for year-over-year earnings growth of 38.89% with revenue increasing by 19.14%. Short interest has decreased by 54.7% since the company's last earnings release while the stock has drifted higher by 6.0% from its open following the earnings release to be 3.1% below its 200 day moving average of $34.24. Overall earnings estimates have been revised higher since the company's last earnings release. On Monday, December 31, 2018 there was some notable buying of 45,575 contracts of the $34.00 call expiring on Friday, March 15, 2019. Option traders are pricing in a 13.4% move on earnings and the stock has averaged a 13.9% move in recent quarters.
Snap Inc. (SNAP) is confirmed to report earnings at approximately 4:10 PM ET on Tuesday, February 5, 2019. The consensus estimate is for a loss of $0.08 per share on revenue of $376.64 million and the Earnings Whisper ® number is ($0.04) per share. Investor sentiment going into the company's earnings release has 31% expecting an earnings beat The company's guidance was for revenue of $355.00 million to $380.00 million. Consensus estimates are for year-over-year earnings growth of 27.27% with revenue increasing by 31.83%. Short interest has decreased by 1.8% since the company's last earnings release while the stock has drifted higher by 12.7% from its open following the earnings release to be 33.6% below its 200 day moving average of $10.40. Overall earnings estimates have been revised higher since the company's last earnings release. On Thursday, January 3, 2019 there was some notable buying of 29,739 contracts of the $7.00 call expiring on Friday, February 15, 2019. Option traders are pricing in a 15.7% move on earnings and the stock has averaged a 19.2% move in recent quarters.
Cleveland-Cliffs Inc (CLF) is confirmed to report earnings at approximately 8:00 AM ET on Friday, February 8, 2019. The consensus earnings estimate is $0.57 per share on revenue of $713.61 million and the Earnings Whisper ® number is $0.63 per share. Investor sentiment going into the company's earnings release has 87% expecting an earnings beat. Consensus estimates are for year-over-year earnings growth of 119.23% with revenue increasing by 18.76%. Short interest has increased by 4.6% since the company's last earnings release while the stock has drifted lower by 9.8% from its open following the earnings release to be 11.2% above its 200 day moving average of $9.47. Overall earnings estimates have been revised lower since the company's last earnings release. On Monday, January 7, 2019 there was some notable buying of 10,030 contracts of the $8.00 call expiring on Thursday, April 18, 2019. Option traders are pricing in a 9.4% move on earnings and the stock has averaged a 7.0% move in recent quarters.
Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (TTWO) is confirmed to report earnings at approximately 7:00 AM ET on Wednesday, February 6, 2019. The consensus earnings estimate is $2.72 per share on revenue of $1.46 billion and the Earnings Whisper ® number is $2.82 per share. Investor sentiment going into the company's earnings release has 84% expecting an earnings beat The company's guidance was for earnings of $0.31 to $0.41 per share. Consensus estimates are for year-over-year earnings growth of 106.06% with revenue increasing by 203.64%. Short interest has increased by 37.1% since the company's last earnings release while the stock has drifted lower by 18.7% from its open following the earnings release to be 9.9% below its 200 day moving average of $116.52. Overall earnings estimates have been revised higher since the company's last earnings release. On Wednesday, January 23, 2019 there was some notable buying of 2,067 contracts of the $120.00 call expiring on Friday, February 15, 2019. Option traders are pricing in a 9.2% move on earnings and the stock has averaged a 8.3% move in recent quarters.
Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ALXN) is confirmed to report earnings at approximately 6:35 AM ET on Monday, February 4, 2019. The consensus earnings estimate is $1.82 per share on revenue of $1.06 billion and the Earnings Whisper ® number is $1.95 per share. Investor sentiment going into the company's earnings release has 67% expecting an earnings beat. Consensus estimates are for year-over-year earnings growth of 23.81% with revenue increasing by 16.52%. Short interest has decreased by 16.7% since the company's last earnings release while the stock has drifted higher by 0.4% from its open following the earnings release to be 5.8% above its 200 day moving average of $119.40. On Friday, February 1, 2019 there was some notable buying of 1,235 contracts of the $130.00 call expiring on Friday, February 15, 2019. Option traders are pricing in a 7.8% move on earnings and the stock has averaged a 6.5% move in recent quarters.
Walt Disney Co (DIS) is confirmed to report earnings at approximately 4:05 PM ET on Tuesday, February 5, 2019. The consensus earnings estimate is $1.57 per share on revenue of $15.18 billion and the Earnings Whisper ® number is $1.62 per share. Investor sentiment going into the company's earnings release has 71% expecting an earnings beat. Consensus estimates are for earnings to decline year-over-year by 16.93% with revenue decreasing by 1.11%. Short interest has increased by 7.2% since the company's last earnings release while the stock has drifted lower by 5.8% from its open following the earnings release to be 1.9% above its 200 day moving average of $109.22. Overall earnings estimates have been revised lower since the company's last earnings release. On Friday, February 1, 2019 there was some notable buying of 8,822 contracts of the $110.00 put expiring on Friday, February 8, 2019. Option traders are pricing in a 3.1% move on earnings and the stock has averaged a 2.2% move in recent quarters.
BP p.l.c (BP) is confirmed to report earnings at approximately 5:25 AM ET on Tuesday, February 5, 2019. The consensus earnings estimate is $0.77 per share on revenue of $60.72 billion and the Earnings Whisper ® number is $0.75 per share. Investor sentiment going into the company's earnings release has 65% expecting an earnings beat. Consensus estimates are for year-over-year earnings growth of 20.31% with revenue decreasing by 13.28%. Short interest has increased by 6.5% since the company's last earnings release while the stock has drifted lower by 1.6% from its open following the earnings release to be 3.9% below its 200 day moving average of $43.01. Overall earnings estimates have been revised lower since the company's last earnings release. On Thursday, January 17, 2019 there was some notable buying of 2,010 contracts of the $33.00 put expiring on Friday, January 17, 2020. Option traders are pricing in a 3.3% move on earnings and the stock has averaged a 2.1% move in recent quarters.
Clorox Co. (CLX) is confirmed to report earnings at approximately 6:30 AM ET on Monday, February 4, 2019. The consensus earnings estimate is $1.32 per share on revenue of $1.48 billion and the Earnings Whisper ® number is $1.34 per share. Investor sentiment going into the company's earnings release has 63% expecting an earnings beat. Consensus estimates are for year-over-year earnings growth of 7.32% with revenue increasing by 4.52%. Short interest has decreased by 9.8% since the company's last earnings release while the stock has drifted higher by 3.5% from its open following the earnings release to be 5.9% above its 200 day moving average of $141.57. Overall earnings estimates have been revised lower since the company's last earnings release. On Friday, January 18, 2019 there was some notable buying of 1,025 contracts of the $152.50 put expiring on Friday, February 8, 2019. Option traders are pricing in a 4.7% move on earnings and the stock has averaged a 3.3% move in recent quarters.
SYSCO Corp. (SYY) is confirmed to report earnings at approximately 8:00 AM ET on Monday, February 4, 2019. The consensus earnings estimate is $0.72 per share on revenue of $14.85 billion and the Earnings Whisper ® number is $0.73 per share. Investor sentiment going into the company's earnings release has 63% expecting an earnings beat. Consensus estimates are for year-over-year earnings growth of 9.09% with revenue increasing by 3.04%. Short interest has decreased by 1.0% since the company's last earnings release while the stock has drifted lower by 2.0% from its open following the earnings release to be 5.6% below its 200 day moving average of $67.34. Overall earnings estimates have been revised lower since the company's last earnings release. On Friday, February 1, 2019 there was some notable buying of 1,691 contracts of the $66.00 call expiring on Friday, February 8, 2019. Option traders are pricing in a 4.5% move on earnings and the stock has averaged a 4.8% move in recent quarters.
|Hi all! I was wondering, what do you think it would take to get bitcoin from a niche currency used mainly by internet denizens to go mainstraim? I know the slow creep of more small companies accepting bitcoin helps, but what do you think that final cusp will be, and will it ever come to that? Thanks for taking the time to do this!||There are several potential tipping points, but my favorite one is a large corporation accepting Bitcoin.|
|Amazon has an incredibly small operating margin, less than 1% - They have more than that in transaction costs, so if they were to accept Bitcoins for product and offer Bitcoins as payment to their affiliates it would cause a rush of other companies to jump onboard for the same reasons.|
|Once that happens with one large company, it sets a precedent. Doing something new is scary, and when the regulatory environment is uncertain like it is with Bitcoin the choice to accept could potentially cost you a lot of money later if it's retroactively made not OK and the value of the currency plummets.|
|But once a company like Amazon or Google jumps in, they have enough political swing and momentum that attacking Bitcoin becomes attacking them, and they'll fight that tooth and nail if it's saving them money.|
|Another example of a tipping point would be a country, ANY country, adopting it as their formal currency OR issuing a new currency with Bitcoins as the transparent backing of it. With bitcoin you can have a functional gold standard, because the gold doesn't need to be hidden from sight.|
|It is the hiding that makes gold standards dangerous - The people who issue currency with the gold as backing have no reason to issue the correct amount when only they know how much is out there, and how much gold they have.|
|I guess the Supreme Court has decided this does not apply to taxes, which is crap. Or are you talking about other countries?||Thank you :) I actually mean something along the lines of "It is illegal to trade dollars for any cryptocurrency that does not have a real name and social security associated with it"|
|Will bitcoins ever be able to be traded like other recognized currencies in similar ways to Forex? More specifically, will there ever be retail brokers offering margin trading accounts that allow you to buy and sell bitcoin with leverage?||There are already really small niche sites you can trade Bitcoin at leverage with, but it's just a bad idea. With a "normal" commodity market, like say chickens, if you think chickens are undervalued and want to profit from them you can buy forward production of say, a million chickens. Then when the option comes due, if you're on the profitable side of the trade you can essentially sell it for cash and the chickens never need to be delivered. In that way, it almost doesn't matter if the chickens ever existed to begin with because you never intended to take posession. With Bitcoin, it's different - Converting a bitcoin options contract into US dollars, yen, whatever actually is more expensive and time consuming than just "accepting delivery" of the bitcoins themselves. You can still sell them for whatever currency you want, but it is at the time of your choosing rather than at the point of settlement. What that means is that if you sell an option and the Bitcoins don't really exist, you could be screwed. You either default or buy them at market price which can be very painful given how volatile the pricing is right now. It is a bad idea to play with leverage in Bitcoin because if you lose, you potentially lose very big. Additionally, it's bad to buy an option because you introduce the possibility of the counterparty (supply) not being able to deliver, whereas if you just bought Bitcoins you have the Bitcoins.|
|Do you believe bitcoin is important locally as well as on the internet? If so, how are you promoting bitcoin in your local communities?||Cryptocurrencies (of which Bitcoin is the most prominent) are the first real competition to the types of money we've used all our lives. With Dollars, Yen, Whatever - Ultimately there are a handful of people who get to decide how and why the currency should be managed.|
|If they did a good job, it might be fine - But the reality is the decision made affecting all users of the currency are to the benefit of a very few , at the cost of the many.|
|Bitcoin is different - The rules that govern it, are the rules that govern it. Nobody can break them, and if they're ever broken it's because more than 51% of the distributed power in the system (anyone can buy a mining rig and join this group). For me, that's incredibly important. Rules should apply evenly to everyone because otherwise they're not rules at all.|
|Local communities can benefit because it removes payment processors from merchant relationships, removes chargeback risk, and basically acts like Cash on the internet.|
|What are some of the more exciting things you (each of you?) envision for Bitcoin in the short to medium term?||Discounts :) We've been talking about the deflationary business model, and during this period where the value is going to go up pretty fast (over the next several years) as adoption ramps up, businesses are going to be giving major discounts to those who choose to spend them.|
|From the merchants perspective, this is actually a huge win - They get to have lower prices than their US Dollar (or local currency) competitors, and the value of the Bitcoins they receive goes up over time instead of going down with printed currencies. Once this becomes pervasive in the Bitcoin economy, it will mean that even at those discounted prices they are STILL profitable because their suppliers are also offering them discounts to pay in Bitcoin.|
|Right now we're at the beginning of this cycle, you can see BitcoinStore.com is attempting it (Disclosure - They have sponsored us in the past, we run a 30s advertisement for them per show) but it's hard to be the first one doing it because it looks like you're sacrificing yourself when really it's just the model that makes the most sense.|
|Not to be the doom and gloom person but in the future what do you think will/would be the "last nail in the coffin" for Bitcoin?||It depends what you mean by "last nail in the coffin"|
|How did you meet/find Andreas and Stephanie and how did you persuade them to be part of your show?||I put out a call for staff several months ago, Andreas found me through that and joined the team initially as a correspondent providing expertise and commentary while Mt.Gox was having a lot of problems. Once we re-started the show as a twice-weekly, he graciously offered to join the hosting staff and gladly took him up on it.|
|I found Stephanie through her show Porc therapy, and a listener named Justus - He mentioned she did voicework, and I hired her to do some of our early introductions and advertising spots. When we went through the re-organization I offered her an occasional hosting role, and never bothered finding other hosts because I was so happy with our dynamic and varied viewpoints.|
|Both of the other hosts on the show are real professionals, and it's been my distinct pleasure to work with them.|
|Thanks for responding! Andreas is my fave (though I enjoy yours and Stephanie's comments too).||Everybody has their favorite :) I think the fact that we all have people disagreeing with us at times means we're doing the job, and providing multiple and varied perspectives.|
|What recording tools are you using?||We started off using Skype, Virtual Audio Cables (VAC) and Adobe Audition (creative suite)|
|Now we use Mumble instead of Skype, but the rest is the same.|
|I edit the host segments for content (sometimes we go on and on and on) and I edit the interviews for presentation, rarely removing any content. Many times the skillset that enables you to have a really smart idea is not the same skillset that lets you present that idea, perfectly, the first time. Our interview subjects tell me all the time "I love how smart I sound" and I get to say "You are smart, I just removed the brain processing noises"|
|Assuming bitcoin reaches critical mass, how does bitcoin cope with the criticism of rewarding early adopters? Do you see a potential uproar about inequity?||Is there outrage against people who bought Apple stock at $30? Bitcoin is a currency that right now, and for the next few years, acting like an IPO. People who got in early got in cheap, but there was a whole lot of risk because people weren't using it much, there wern't vendors accepting it, so the use case is much more speculative.|
|We're very much still in the early adoption phase right now - Less than %.01 of internet users are Bitcoin users, as that number grows while the number of coins being added to the total pool grows at a much slower rate, the price per coin has to go up. If Bitcoin fails and everybody abandons it, this works the opposite way - but it actually solves a number of problems (microtransactions, fees, international money transfers, automated payment systems) so I'm not super concerned about that.|
|One of my favorite quotes, by Douglas Adams.|
|>It is a rare mind indeed that can render the hitherto non-existent >blindingly obvious. The cry 'I could have thought of that' is a very >popular and misleading one, for the fact is that they didn't, and a very >significant and revealing fact it is too.|
|What do you make of the download trend of the bitcoin client software in China? Isn't this a big story?||China has lots of restrictive controls on their local currency, so Bitcoin has a real use case there. This is one of many scenarios where given even 1% adoption, the price must go very much above where it is now.|
|You commented on a recent episode about how Satochi Dice was going to block US traffic to the site due to uncertain regulations. Can't bitcoin work around that? If you send bitcoin to the addresses of the various bets - it still works right? Thanks for your show - I await each new podcast.||Yes, if you already have the specific betting addresses it doesn't matter where you are in the world. It is only the website that does not allow US IPs, they did this to be very clear they were trying to respect the US gambling laws.|
|I spoke with Erik Voorhees about this among other things at the conference, you can find that interview here Link to letstalkbitcoin.com|
|I'd like to thank all three of you for doing this podcast, it's always thought provoking and fun to listen to. Plus, Stephanie does have a very sexy voice... But I do have a question,||Right now, I don't know the answer to that question.|
|How do miners determine which transactions will be confirmed first and which get put to the back of the line? Shouldn't they be confirmed in a 'first come, first serve' basis?||But the development team has made it clear they're moving towards a market-based mechanism where Miners set the minimum transaction fee they will accept, and process on a first-come/highest-fee model. People who want their transaction to process fast will put a higher fee and it will be prioritized, while people who don't care about delivery time will be able to send no fee and be subsidized by those paying higher fees.|
|*edit: As well, do you still plan on using some time on the show to go into more detail about mining? I think it was mentioned a few weeks ago that the topic might be explored in further detail.||There will be fewer miners who accept free or very low fee transactions, so there you go.|
|How would Bitcoin change our financial system as we know it?||In the same way the automobile changed the horse-and-buggy system as they knew it. If you play out the logic, one functionally obsoletes the other. I was talking with a financial reporter the other day who has been coming around to bitcoin, and he said to me "You know, if they were building the banking system from scratch today I think this is pretty close to what it would look like"|
|Andreas answered a question below about bitcoin and self driving cars, fixing spam on the internet by using Bitcoin addresses with tiny amounts of BTC in them to prove you're a real person and not a single-use bot, there are so many crazy and impossible things that become actually probable when you're talking in the context of a world built on decentralized, rules-based, cryptographically secured, instantly transmittable, person to person internet cash.|
|I have never been so hopeful for our future as I am now that I've thrown my days into bitcoin. Bitcoin 2013 was a fine conference and a wonderful experiance, so many very smart people have quit their jobs or left their studies to do the same thing I have.|
|We know we're building the future, and it's a better one than we have today.|
|Have any of you heard about how in Africa much of the exchange in value is done with mobile phone minutes? It seems to me - whatever the US attempts to do with Bitcoin - there will be other places that it will bubble up in. What about Argentina and other places where they actually understand what damage a desperate government can do to a currency?||I would agree with you. Until recently it's been impossible to use Bitcoins on a "dumb cell phone" - That changed recently with Link to phoneacoin.com and others.|
|Bitcoin solves problems that the world has had for decades, it takes the power to destroy the currency away from government so they cannot do it no matter how much they want to, or how desperately they think they need to.|
|No government wants to destroy a currency, they just don't want to acknowledge they've trapped themselves with debt and have no way out.|
|Who invented Bitcoin? What is to stop whoever did so initially issuing themselves the equivalent of $79 zillion in Bitcoin currency prior to it taking off? Is there commission charged on each transaction that occurs? If so, how much, and who receives this?||The true creator is not known, he went by a false name "Satoshi".|
|He actually holds about 250,000 coins if I recall correctly because he was the first miner. Bitcoin is a protocol, a set of rules. It's open source, and anyone who wants to look at it can see that there is not a mechanism to just create more coins by typing in a magic word. There are no commissions, although there are fees that go to the miners who process and verify transactions.|
|Great podcast, can't wait for the next one!||It depends on the mesh. If the mesh was never connected to the internet, it would be a parralel Bitcoin network able to transact with itself but if it was ever connected to the larger network any conflicting transactions would be "lost" as the two ledgers (the big one, and the disconnected one) try to reckon their differences. Only one winner, so that means there is a loser.|
|You discussed mesh networks in 3rd world countries and how bitcoin could be used in such a scenario. If the [mesh] network is disconnected from the internet, how would transactions on the blockchain be verified? Couldn't the time the mesh network was disconnected make it vulnerable to hacking the [mesh network's] blockchain?||More interesting might be disconnected communities running their own fork or version of Bitcoin, that way if they're ever connected it can be an exchange process (trading their coins for "bitcoins" rather than a reckoning (Seeing who has a bigger network and canceling out transactions on the smaller one that conflict)|
|1) The price for one Bitcoin seems to fluctuate quite a bit. The most successful currencies remain relatively stable over time (e.g. the Dollar). Will Bitcoin ever need to reach a certain level of stability to be a successful unit of trade? and if so, what do you think needs to happen before then?||1 - Yes! Once everyone who has purchased Bitcoin has purchased them, the price will stabilize. In practice this will start happening long before absolute stability, and as soon as people start thinking about prices in terms of BTC instead of their local currency it almost doesn't matter.|
|2) If Bitcoin ever becomes a widely accepted form of payment (seems a lot of businesses already accept it), how do you think the US government will proceed/react/regulate/etc. considering that technically only the feds can issue currency?||2 - "The Feds" are not the only ones who can issue currency - They have legal tender laws which mean people MUST accept their money, but nothing prevents you from circulating a voluntary currency like Bitcoin.|
|Do you foresee companies like paypal incorporating bitcoin into their businesses in the future as a more credible exchange than these ones that are currently running?||No. Paypal again is the proverbial horse-drawn-buggy manufacturer- Sure they might go to the worlds faire and while observing the new fangled automobiles say to themselves 'we might integrate this into our existing machines!' when the fact is that it obsoletes those existing machines.|
|Paypal makes their money by standing in the middle of transactions collecting fees, Bitcoin serves its function by connecting people who want to do commerce directly to one-another, and what fees are paid are a tiny fraction of what Paypal does. If paypal accepted Bitcoin, it would not be Bitcoin any more because they would have mechanisms to freeze accounts at the very least to mitigate risk. That is not possible with Bitcoin by itself.|
|Thanks for the well thought out response, I genuinely appreciated that you took the time for this! I do have a follow up question, how does one get bit coin in an easy way? Lets say I have 300$ that I want in bit coin.. whats the best way to approach this?||Probably a company like bitinstant.com, bitstamp.com, or btcquick.com - For larger amounts they don't make too much sense but at that level its your best bet.|
|Not to be rude, but how do you expect for a currency without a standard like gold silver etc. to not crash down in a blaze of glory?||What standard is your currency backed by?|
|Hi There. I was at the San Jose convention hall last weekend attending Big Wow Comicfest and that's where I saw Bitcoin2013!||Mostly Bitcoin 2013 was an opportunity for people building the future of Bitcoin to meet each other and network. There were speakers talking about a wide variety of issues, and vendors of Bitcoin services who were showing their latest innovations and systems.|
|What information was presented at this event that couldn't be done justice disseminated over the internet?||The information will eventually be online, but the probably 200 people I got to meet in real life will not (in real life)|
|What resources do you think I should review as a total newbie to bitcoin? Or if possible, what's the one sentence pitch to get a newb involved?||For people brand new, www.weusecoins.com is a good place to start For people who want to learn how it works, www.letstalkbitcoin.com/learn will direct you to the Bitcoin Education Project, which is a series of free and very high quality lectures that will tell you everything you ever wanted to know and more about Bitcoin, How it works, and all the little sub-topics that you'll eventually want to learn about.|
|The pitch is "It's like cash that lives on the internet, and is as easy to spend on the internet as buying a candybar in a store with a dollar"|
|Would any of you hazard a guess at the bitcoin exchange rate at the end of 2013?||Sure, i'll make a wild guess.|
|If and when a large user comes onboard, I think thats the next price at which we'll bounce around for a while, just like 100 became the sticky point after the last major bout of adoption.|
|How do bitcoins relate to the law? For example, what would be the crime if somone hacked your account and stole your bitcoins? It's not exactly theft of money, or is it?||Bitcoins are your property, it's illegal for someone to steal your property whether it is money or not. Right now there is little that can be done about theft, but eventually I expect a class of "Blockchain Forensic Investigators" to emerge who will track down your stolen coins for a % based fee.|
|On your last show you mentioned the diversity of the Bitcoiners who attended BitCoin2013 - which nation was most represented in your opinion? Were there any Chinese nationals present (we've heard that they've suddenly gotten the bitcoin bug in the last month)? Did the other nations talk about regulatory problems or is that just a US concern?||I met the gentleman from BTC-China, but other than that I actually didn't see any obvious chinese nationals. We saw lots of eastern europeans and south americans.|
|Other nations are not talking about the regulatory issue as far as I can tell, it seems like everyone is waiting to see what the US does, which is not abnormal in a very new situation like this.|
|Isn't having an inherently deflationary currency a terrible idea? How is bitcoin different from geeky goldbuggery?||Because you can't divide a gold coin into .0001 without incurring cost and expense. That's not the case with Bitcoin, so the deflationary aspect of it is largely moot.|
|There is a tendency to listen to modern "economics" which makes this arguement, saying that the money supply must expand because otherwise it drives down profitability in a race to the bottom.|
|I think in practice we'll find that people don't work against their own best interest, and while during the initial adoptions stages of Bitcoin there will be significant discounts offered to those who pay with Bitcoin vs. legacy currency, once the market becomes saturated and the price levels out those discounts will be scaled way back.|
|Right now it makes sense to heavily discount, because the expectation is that the value of the Bitcoins will go up during this period of adoption, that won't always be true and the discount is a reflection of anticipated future returns.|
|Was it bad when people saved money in banks that paid 10% interest? No, that's called capital formation. There is a thought that given a deflationary currency nobody will spend any money, that's nonsense. Just because your currency gains value over time doesn't mean that you no longer have costs that must be paid for. What Deflationary currencies do is say "Ok, you could spend it on that, but is it worth it relative to what you'll gain by not?"|
|That's a good thing. Our system right now works on the opposite theory - Spend money NOW because if you're dumb enough to keep it in the bank it will actually lose value over time between the couple points of "official" inflation and less than 1% artifical interest rates. The situation is like this now because the fed is trying to make people spend as much money as possible with the hope that the flows will "restart the economic engine"|
|Too bad this isn't how things work, not that it'll stop us from trying it over and over again.|
|In the 2008 financial crash, govts bailed out the banks because there was no other way to maintain the whole financial ecosystems of payrolls, invoices and trade, all of which go through the banking system.||Honestly? No. Bitcoin would be great in this role, but governments around the world rely on their ability to expand the money supply (print money, or sell debt) in order to fund their deficits. They also manipulate interest rates to be low so that debt is very inexpensive.|
|Can you envisage another financial crash in the future where govt says, "We don't need to do a bailout, as we've got this alternative payment system" and then instructs businesses and employees to just get themselves a bitcoin address and work through the Bitcoin system?||Bitcoin doesn't have a central control mechanism, so there is no group or person who can say "OK - the interest rate is 1%" - If that's really what the interest rate wants to be based on market forces, it'll be that - But if not, there isn't much anyone can do to stop it.|
|What type of notes and agenda does the team coordinate on before a show?||We use Basecamp, and it really depends. Right now we have a show prep thread that has 30+ posts in it for episode 11, we'll probably use 5 of those.|
|The agenda is really basic - As we get near recording time topics are selected (generally by me, but I like to get the other hosts to do it since they provide most of the commentary in Host segments) and I form a schedule, then we run through the recording session hitting each topic.|
|Over the last weeks we've brought two researchers onto the team, so that has helped a TON.|
|I first learned about Bitcoins on an episode of The Good Wife. The one with Jason Biggs as the creator of BitCoin. Have you watched that episode and how accurate does that episode portray what's happening with Bitcoin in terms of legal stuff?||Not having seen it but knowing TV, I'm gonna go out on a limb and say "not very well" Satoshi has not been identified, was a throw-away identity that was cryptographically secured, so probably never will.|
|Are there any conferences in Chicago anytime soon? I think a Q&A in public would be helpful for your show as well as bitcoin.||I'll be speaking at an event in NYC on July 30, there will be one or two meetups while I'm there. There is also an event in October in Atlanta. I remember talking with a guy at Bitcoin2013 wearing a shirt that said "BitcoinChicago" so I'd suggest looking for a user-group.|
|We're planning on doing Q&As often, but none of us are really near Chicago so it's tough. Happy to do virtual Q&As over skype, live or recorded.|
|Oh dear. You're not all perfectly grammatical orators on the first try? I'm crushed!||I really value my own time, and I know other people out there do too. I try to make the show as information dense as possible, thats the criteria we've been operating under from really day one.|
|We're actually talking about cutting the show in half and releasing it more often (still recording the same amount) because people can get tired of listening to such dense content for an hour or more.|
|US Treasury recently issued a directive stating they would be monitoring any entity attempting to exchange virtual currency for USD (or any other currency, goods, or services), indicating that federal authorities take a dim view of what amounts to private coinage. Do you anticipate a Supreme Court case here defining what is and is not private coinage? 2.And given bitcoin's noted extra-legal uses, do you have any indication it is being decrypted by NSA? 3.Taking it a step further, do you think it could be a national security-sponsored international sieve for money laundering?||It may eventually go to Supreme Court.|
|I think the market has done fine for bitcoin so far. I think the market will continue to take care of bitcoin. The idea of giving in willingly to regulation makes me cringe.||There are two camps. Some people think that regulation is inevitable, and since it's going to happen anyways it's better to participate in the process and try to make it less bad. The other side thinks that by participating, you accept their authority to regulate it when really they have no right to regulate money and have proven to do a very bad job at it now for quite a number of years.|
|Thanks so much for doing this, I love the Bitcoin system, but hate the volatility. How do you recommend dealing with that? I've heard to convert it quickly to the currency of choice after any exchange has been made to avoid any more changes to the price.||The easy solution is just buy and hold - If you need to buy something, do it when you need to and not before. Do not pre-order anything.|
|What is your prediction of the price for 1 btc in USD, exactly one year from now? Just for fun, since I know it is impossible to even guess the day to day price swings.||As a wild guess number I'd say $1000 or less than a dollar. Very little middleground because if it's regulated out of existence it will still exist, but be hard to find and cheap - If adoption continues to path the price should accelerate with wild spikes up and down.|
|My partner is buying into bitcoin as well as litecoin. Any advice for him? (I personally don't understand it)||Don't panic, invest for the long term, and don't buy any more than you can afford to lose 100% of because there are still things that could dramatically reduce the price of bitcoin (mostly regulatory stuff, I answered this elsewhere in the thread)|
|Hello, I just wrote a long post about the functions of using BTC to facilitate a 'free bank' using the principals of free money, similar to the WIR bank. Link to en.wikipedia.org Do you think that something like this would be possible using Bitcoin?||Probably. Not really my area of expertise.|
|Why did bits take a dive at the same time gold took a tank?||I don't pay attention to price, sorry.|
|We take full credit for any rise and blame others for any decline. Feel free to tip us from your gains!||Lol.|
|Just wanted to say I love your show. I encourage you to please continue making high-quality podcast episodes. Thank you.||I'm really excited to be able to be a journalist in such an exciting field in a time when journalism is under attack. Not sure if you've been following the so-called "AP scandal" but now is a weird time to be trying to report the truth in this world, and we couldn't have picked a more controversial topic to the global macro picture.|
|Bitcoins are the stupidest investment anyone could ever make. Pass.||Link to static.quickmeme.com|
|Unfortunately, quickmeme doesn't let you copy image urls directly.||Link to i.qkme.me|
|Yes, but they started being worth a set value. bitcoin was never backed by anything so its value was kind of made up. how do you expect to make a non goverment currency anybody with a computer can print to retain value?||Because the pie is only so large, the more people who have computers devoted to the work just each get a smaller and smaller piece.|
|The rate of issuance for Bitcoin is currently 25 bitcoins every 10 minutes. Only one person or pool gets the whole 25 bitcoins, it's a race to find them. If there are 10 people looking, chances are pretty good you'll find some. If there are 100,000,000 people looking, chances are much less good that you'll find them first, but if there are that many people looking those 25 coins are probably worth a whole lot more.|
|The system is self balancing in this way, unlike the government currency system where they create 65 billion USD worth of new value every month to buy mortgage backed securities for face value to try and prop up the market. With more than a trillion USD being added in this way each year, how can a government currency retain its value?|
|Because the governments "pie" does infact have limits to making it, and only dropped gold standard after over 150 years of the doller having a defined worth, unlike bitcoin, where a random hacker can just print endless money.||I'd direct you to security researcher Dan Kaminsky. Link to www.businessinsider.com|
|You'll find it's a little harder than you're describing. Like, impossible.|
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