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happyhaddock

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About happyhaddock

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  1. Most coverage of fishing by national media in the UK is uninformed rubbish. That simply isn't so. To quote the MSP for Shetland, "The Faroese and Icelandic pelagic fleets hoovered up mackerel in EU waters without quota. What did the European Commission do? Reward them with quota. So no wonder our pelagic industry want out." The total UK quota last year was 612,612 tonnes (from a total EU quota exceeding 2 million tonnes). That may not be "loads" but the industry employs thousands of people and is worth a considerable amount to some communities. The Provisional Scottish Sea Fisheries Statistics 2015 gives 4828 employed fishermen in Scotland with a £437 million value to Scottish registered boats. The greatest current danger to the white fish industry is the next phase of the "discard ban" which will render most of the fleet unviable after January. The greatest danger to the pelagic fleet is the EU's handling of Faroese and Icelandic fishing in EU (British) waters.
  2. happyhaddock

    Ryanair Hatefest In 'the Observer' )

    I had the pleasure of taking a Southwest Airlines return flight from LA to Vegas last month and they were excellent! Checked in outside, in the sunshine, at both airports with no queues. No need to print a boarding pass - just have ID and the booking number. 2 X 50lb bags included (3rd 50lb bag $50), 2 X cabin bags, free in-flight soft drinks or coffee. They even threw in some peanuts. Alcoholic drinks were extra, as was in-flight wi-fi ($5) and live TV ($6). No extras when booking - no credit card fees, luggage fees, etc. Really good humored, cheerful and pleasant staff. The contrast with ryanair was striking.
  3. happyhaddock

    Most Hated Phrases

    "We'll have to agree to disagree"
  4. happyhaddock

    Gold strategy in the current economy

    The graph isn't meaningless as it shows a very high degree of correlation between US$ real interest rates and the gold price over the past few decades. It isn't entirely straightforward due to the leverage and deflator factors applied in the model and these were conceived and applied to fit the data. Whether it's a guide to the future is another matter of course. With regard to future real interest rates, I don't believe that Ben Bernanke has spent his entire career bluffing. It seems likely that there will be sufficient US$ printing to maintain negative real interest rates for some time. What's the alternative? That will inevitably be punctuated by periodic deflationary scares and consequent gold corrections. A deflationary bust in China, and the policy response to it, would complicate things considerably. Ultimately gold isn't directly a hedge against inflation, historically it's proved to be a leveraged hedge against monetary policy.
  5. happyhaddock

    Gold strategy in the current economy

    It's a model created with 20/20 hindsight and the numbers were cooked up to achieve a fit. The original article linked gives a decent overview. The basic principle that gold tends to go up when real interest rates are negative and down when they are positive is sound. The 4.44% inflation is what it's claimed to be - an average for the last 43 years, as anyone who has read those articles would know.
  6. happyhaddock

    Gold strategy in the current economy

    Gold's correlation with real interest rates was modeled by Eddy Elfenbein - A Possible Model for the Price of Gold A little tweaking and a 95.52% fit is arrived at: Model projection based on 4.44% inflation Whilst the natural course of events would be deflation, what will Mr Bernanke do?
  7. Whether it's a good idea depends on a number of factors, many of which cannot be known as they will depend on developments over the next 3 or 4 decades in your case: What proportion you may need to commit to buying an annuity and when. What annuity rates will be in 30 - 40 years. What your total income will be and the tax banding levels in 30 - 40 years. The tax treatment of income into the fund in the interim. What restrictions will be placed on investment for pension funds - will they remain flexible? Whether you may need the money in the interim - Buying a house? Starting a business? What benefits or state "entitlements" will it preclude you from? You may end up with a lot of money committed which may be earning little or declining in real terms while paying more than the returns in interest rates on short term debt. Personally I'd retain flexibility and invest it mainly in shares ISAs which would enable the ability to get the money or draw an income if and when required. As things stand there's no further tax liability on income from an ISA. If you have faith in future governments to treat you fairly and are certain that you have no need of the money in the meantime then go right ahead.
  8. happyhaddock

    The Historical Case For $960 Silver

    Clearly I'm drinking in the wrong pub Having poked around some more I've found an amazing list of 1900 prices compiled by Greater Manchester Police Museum and Archives Some snippets: Annual salary of a: Shop Assistant £20 0s 0d General Labourer £46 7s 0d Police Constable on joining £67 12s 0d Tinplate worker £91 0s 0d Bank Manager £400 0s 0d Housing costs (annual): Rent for six bed middle class house £50 0s 0d Rent for a 3 bed terrace house, comprising 5 rooms and scullery with washing copper £15 12s 0d Rent for two room slum house of poor quality (rates paid by landlord) £6 10s 0d Various items: Two pints of lamp oil 2d One tablet of face soap 1d Forty piece Staffordshire china tea service 13s 6d Serving of kippers 2d A pound of rice 2d A pound of cheese 5d One sheep’s head 6d A bottle of whisky 3s Cup of coffee and a slice of bread and butter from a stall 1d “Hokey-Pokey” pink and white ice cream per lump ½d Large box of “Page Woodcock’s Wind Pills” for indigestion sufferers 2s 9d Admission to Newton Heath Association Football Club (later MUFC) for boy 3d Lots more fascinating data at the link.
  9. happyhaddock

    The Historical Case For $960 Silver

    I've just stumbled aross this interesting document A Century of Change: Trends in UK statistics since 1900 In 1900 a crown could buy you 30 pints of beer in a pub but only 20 copies of The Times. I think the beer:silver ratio peaked in 1980 in the low 50s pints per crown. We're trading around 5 now (assuming no numismatic premium).
  10. More fascinating detail at Hinckley Star Trek flat faces uncertain future This metro article from 2007 (ish) states that it sold on Ebay for 425K Star Trek flat sold on eBay So it was sold but they still have it, the amount of money spent varies depending on the article you read and the ex wants to return it to a conventional home for selling, thus presumably destroying much of its value.
  11. happyhaddock

    Break Up Of Uk

    That's unlikely but what's certainly plausible is for Shetland to elect to remain part of the UK in the event of Scottish independence. The council passed a resolution to do just that back in the '70s and I can't see why Shetlanders would choose to become part of an independent Scotland. I suspect that it hasn't occurred to most Scottish nationalists that Scotland doesn't really have much oil at all (and that "their" richest fishing grounds aren't Scottish either).
  12. happyhaddock

    Squeaky Bum Time?

    If you think the price is going down short term within a longer term uptrend it's far cheaper, quicker and easier to hedge or even go net short through spread betting (assuming in-hand physical holdings). Having said that, shorting oil can also be very effective at playing deflationary scares - it certainly was in May. It's thus possible to maintain a SHTF hedge in physical metal and synthetically liquidate as long as the paper markets function. Paper profits can be used to acquire more metal for the next upleg.
  13. happyhaddock

    It Pays To Be A Liar.

    Well, at least it's in the hills unlike his soon-to-be-submerged condo so perhaps he does believe sea levels will rise after all?
  14. Perhaps it was a coincidence but this listing ended within 15 minutes of my complaint. I complained on the basis that the claimed exemption to the distance selling regulations was spurious as the metal content had a value of about 1% of the price. I'd previously complained last week on the basis that the seller was attempting to defraud. However it was relisted today and had over 29 days left to run. When it gets relisted again I'll complain on the basis that it isn't bullion so shouldn't be listed under "Other Metal Bullion". I guess I'll eventually run out of complaints and it does get tiresome. They were (appear to be sold out!) $49.95 for 10 from CMC Mint if anyone is curious as to where a lot of that "100 mills" and 1 grain rubbish comes from.
  15. happyhaddock

    Hello... And Kruger Opinions!

    If he discloses that it'll be swamped by HPCers in tinfoil hats backing their trucks up. I'll be among them. A plausible explanation is old stock whose price hasn't been updated and the staff lack the awareness to check. If that's the case, buy as much as you can at that price. It certainly doesn't seem right and if you do buy, go straight to the nearest pawnbroker and ask them how much they'll lend you on them - they'll check the authenticity and you can politely decline their offer.
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