Sunday, February 14, 2016
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Time For Twitter To Die


Picture casually borrowed from The

I’ve been especially preoccupied for the past couple of months, not least because I want to be. I do not enjoy watching my account fling itself about in 5% interval sessions every day. So I’ve worked to keep my head out of the market’s daily trading; if I’m not actively watching then I cannot do something stupid.

I have also made the conscientious decision to get off of Twitter.

Twitter’s service is the epitome of pointless preoccupations. It is jam-packed with losers – the less informed on any subject the better – the kind of place that only journalists could call home. Twitter is a desolate wasteland of sound bytes. A proverbial dessert filled the brim with bumper sticker slogans, and no better.

The service rose to prominence on its remarkable ability to act as a staging ground for foreign opposition movements. Twitter was almost as personally responsible for the Arab Spring on the people setting themselves on fire.

So naturally that aspect of the site has been put under wraps. In order to even operate under these foreign despots, Twitter has been reduced to making agreements to prevent users from creating those types of flash movements. Strike one: its most relevant purpose of spurring democracy in the undemocratic corners of the world is gone.

So what’s left? Celebrities and vicious American politics mostly. Twitter is a great place to watch a man lose his job because he holds traditional views on marriage, or to watch the feminist activist who crushed him be forced into hiding for the rest of her life as a product of retaliation.

So not a whole lot worth seeing. The worst humanity has to offer actually. Strike two.

As far as a news source, Twitter excels. I’ve gotten breaking news from it at speeds that cripple traditional outlets, making even the Cable Networks look like homeless people. But the cost of weeding through all of that bullshit is just not appealing anymore. It’s not like first access to news is all that useful of a strategy for making money anyway.

Big returns are had by correctly bucking the herd over long term. Fifteen minutes of advanced notice in developing announcements is just not a good edge. Hell, half the time those breaking segments are wrong or incomplete anyway.

And that’s basically strike three. What’s good about Twitter is overwhelmed by the feminazis. I realized how easy it was to get stuck in the sticky politics of Twitter and how hard it was to navigate the platform successfully. And every day Twitter admins make it known that there won’t be much left worth navigating for.

As far as Twitter’s actual user base is concerned: is almost impossible to tell how many real human beings actually use the service. Bots are everywhere doing all sorts of algorithm nonsense. From the angle of the business (and all ad based New Tech business ventures in general) let me ask you something:

Have you ever intentionally clicked on a web ad?

Who are these people buying products from web advertisement? Who says “hey that car that just interrupted what I was doing looks awesome, I think I’ll spend $20,000”? There has to be some serious limitations to this approach as a viable sales generator for companies.

I mean, maybe I’m wrong here? Maybe some of you just love having your day interrupted to put your credit card number on unknown internet websites…?

But if you were a company with a $10K… $100K, …$1M advertising budget, why would you go to a service like Twitter? Especially if your own service wasn’t sales based? If you are selling widgets and some guy says “hey I found your widget on Twitter”, well that I guess is all good and well.

But what about if you’re using Twitter to promote your product which is also advertising based? How do you know the “people” linking to your website are even real?

And if you’re a company selling real products and buying ad space on any website, how do you know their traffic is real either?

Wrapping this post up, I haven’t regularly used Twitter in almost a month and a half, limiting myself to only occasional sessions, and I feel great. It’s a pointless time vacuum and being free from it my productivity in other areas have grown by leaps and bounds. Good riddance.

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OPEC Happily Pens Own Eulogy

Mideast Saudi Culture Janadriyah

I had figured that OPEC would at least, at this junction, try to act and save their own skin. Instead, they gave the weakest press release known to man, then smiled gaily about it.

The problem with OPEC’s strategy is that they are conflating oil share with profits. Somehow, they have gotten it into their heads that they can never make as much money with, say, a quarter of the market as they could with a third of it.

But at the end of the day, price can matter an awful lot too. Saudi Arabia in particular has decided that, for whatever reason, they must preserve the old production levels. Maybe it’s a status symbol. Maybe the new king is a moron. Maybe they just can’t add very well. But they are prepared to take on US levels of indebtedness in exchange for bragging rights.

It’s really coy. I just don’t know what to make of this. I bet a lot that they wouldn’t do something this deranged, yet here we are.

Saudi Arabia is saying that they won’t cut production unless non-OPEC members do. Uh huh…and how pray tell do they expect to organize that meeting? So much of the new production is private business, it’s not like you just call them all up on the phone.

For some unfathomable reason, Saudi Arabia thinks they can call the shots and have this all under control. Why such a small and widely disliked country would think that is beyond me. So my best guess is before this flood is over, the Saud family will be drowned by it. It takes a special variety of stupid to shoot holes in your own life boat.

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29% Relief Rally In HCLP


Hi-Crush Partners L.P. is having a little party today, up 29% as of now and taking back some of the vicious losses from the last month. Oil prices are laying under $50 per share; a bleak reminder of the horror lying in wait for everyone in the U.S. oil and gas industry.

The once mighty WTI-Brent spread has been decimated, now barely $2 difference, having all but priced in the US opening domestic oil production for exportation. Or perhaps a global depression of shocking depth and scale. I can’t really tell for sure.

We are fast approaching the winter months, when production budgets for oil and gas companies reset. The next two months will be full of nightmarish stories playing out in real life. Bankruptcies will pick up, solvent firms will implement a drilling holiday anyway, and real hard decisions will be made about what are “core activities”. Non-essential (and especially money draining) operations will never reopen for business.

This should feed the narrative of a tightening market and help to shore up prices a little more. But then in January, with fresh budgets for the year, we’ll see what’s left turn the lights back on and set forward.

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See, It Wasn’t 9 Million

There you go, the 9 million barrel estimate was too high. The real number was …7 1/2 million barrels!?

What the fuck is that, America?

Alright so the API was more right than not on this one. That is awful…just God awful. I don’t know what the hell is going on here; if it’s production ramping up or demand dying down or even just dark storage pools of oil finding its way back to market. I don’t know, but that is a terrible outcome for oil markets right now.

So, with that in mind, let us proceed to end game.

If you are in this industry and you are not positioned in the top three quarters of the field, you are going bankrupt. Bu-bye.

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What’s 15% To OMAB?

A cloudy day wafts across the window of the 9th Floor. The lingering smell of lunch sits in the air while the soft office sounds of my typing keep me company.

What is 15% to OMAB, I ask you?

15% is how much passenger growth OMAB had in September of 2015 over September 2014. The company was growing at a 17% clip. That has moderated 2% to a still impressive 15% annual growth rate.

After the second quarter, revenue growth stood at 36.41%. 19.74% of that was hiking sales prices, and the rest was volume of business.

The stock is in a state of permanent liftoff, and it’s one of the bright spots on my year.

OMAB strategically has two major things going for it. The first is a strong dollar which makes travel for nearby US residents much cheaper. And the second is ultra cheap fuel prices which are coming fast thanks to the crude implosion.

As it becomes more affordable for vacation travel, OMAB’s core business model is going to benefit directly.

I am waiting excitedly to hear how OMAB’s latest quarter shaped up. The company is on a tear.

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Oil Retakes $50 – Saudi Arabia Still Stupid

100816 EIA Oil Production Vs Consumption

Take a good look, because the oil price weakness is about to come to an end. I am not saying that just because the EIA is predicting the production/consumption balance to close (as predicted by everything to the right of the vertical delineation).

I am saying so because all the big players are starting to make very visible, very vocal moves designed to assure the market that they will get the imbalance under control. The Saudi’s have made some token production cuts, after biting off quite a bit more than they can chew with all of this. Shell has just abandoned the Arctic drilling – a project that, in for $4.5 billion, has been the proverbial chain around Shell’s neck – in the loudest and most attention getting way imaginable. And anyone with a pen is writing about how US Shale production is coming down (despite it not really happening yet).

But look close at the EIA historical chart above and realize how tame the production overrun has been. 2 million barrels a day is not the end all, be all of the oil market. In 2009 alone, just US demand for crude oil plunged 1.1 million barrels per day. Demand from all industrialized nations dropped by something like 2.2 million barrels per day. OPEC by itself had to slash production by 1.5 million barrels per day just to try and shore the market up.

Those were real production cuts responding to real demand destruction. By comparison, what we have here is production that’s gotten a little ahead of demand growth. So far, aside from some hiccups in Europe and China, there’s been no demand destruction to speak of. This is not cause for the end of oil; it’s a case of the need for some very weak, very adventurous hands to get flushed out. And that process is almost over.

And isn’t it interesting that the most adventurous, most weakly positioned oil plays all end up being Big Oil or State owned? Let’s be clear, the most expensive plays on the planet are in deep water or remote locations or involve tedious chemical and refinement processes. If you’re drilling 150 feet below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean, or in the middle of the Arctic circle, I have a feeling you’re not a $2 billion market cap company. You’re probably a Shell, or an Exxon Mobile, or the country of Norway, Russia or Brazil.

The Saudi’s haven’t killed the US oil boom; they’ve killed oil funded State welfare schemes. Including their own, I might add…

I will be the first to admit that I didn’t believe the Saudi’s were trying to get into a production war with the US – wrongly. But I didn’t believe it for a pretty good reason; because this was really, really stupid. The Saudi’s have set their own economy in tatters, and why? Because some new king wanted to claim Saudi Arabia was still the biggest oil exporter? Because this was somehow going to make them richer?

What the Saudi’s have done, effectively, is make it necessary for them to produce twice as much oil for the same amount of money. Who fucking does that?

If oil markets had accepted that $70 oil was the new floor price to extract tar sands or deep water fields, the Saudi fields would have been getting $150 a barrel for their extraction cost of – what is it even? – $20 a barrel? As the price had risen, the need for the Saudi’s to be the biggest producer would have just phased out. They could have gotten by on lower production, preserving their precious low cost oil for decades more.

Instead, they get shit. Their dollar reserves are flying out the door and their zero debt position is soon going to be a distant memory.

Well done, House of Saud. You morons deserve to be thrown from power for that.

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