Oh this is priceless. The piece is written by Vic de Klerk, also known as Trader Vic. Normally I'd post an extract and a link, but I've seen the product of links to pages on Fin 24 disappear after a while, so herewith in entirety as it is far to good to have disappear into the ether one day.
Oh yes. Original is from Fin 24 here. The comments at the end of the article are starting to mount and is also good for a giggle.
NEGATIVE PEOPLE full of gripes and hang-ups should never, ever try their hand at day trading, swing trading or investment on the JSE. They should focus on sending ridiculous letters and e-mails full of file and misplaced personal experience to newspaper and internet pages.
However, outright bears that prefer to play short trades, are a completely different class of person and shouldn't be confused with the negatives - they're also called Aunties, because they're anti everything.
For obvious reasons, day traders should always prefer the short side of the market. Ten successive days of modest increases in share prices are usually followed by one or two days of quite violent corrections, which are more profitable and easier to spot by the day trader.
But negative people full of hang-ups are just a joke. We've experienced some fascinating comment on FIN24 over the past week. I was perhaps a bit overoptimistic in picking Telkom as a possible good performer over the next 12 months. TMTs are again quite popular worldwide, and Telkom, with its 50% stake in Vodacom and fixed-line business that's apparently valued at less than R20bn, appears to be cheap.
We received one nice and well-argued reply on why my forward price target of R180/share was rather rich and I've taken serious note of the content.
Convert into money
Though most of the other comments were pure rubbish, Telkom should take note of the extreme negative perception of its business. One joker predicted that the price of Telkom would shortly drop to R1/share due to its high fees and inept management. Another went even a bit further and predicted that the SA economy was on the verge of a complete collapse because of the high price of the ADSL service. That would drive all new business to other countries.
Nice strong views, you chaps have. But please convert them into money. Short the hell out of Telkom shares and "sommer" the whole SA economy. What's the value of such strong views without converting them into money?
For decades many in South Africa have been complaining about the expensive petrol that Sasol sells. Sasol was started with government money and they now owe it to the public to sell cheap petrol instead of making super profits that's paid out as excessive dividends to shareholders.
The CEOs of successful companies are also invariably paid too much. Stop moaning, my friends. Joe Stegmann, founder and CEO of the modern Sasol, made it very clear on numerous occasions that Sasol's mission is to produce and supplement fuel for SA - it wasn't created to provide cheap petrol for the SA motorist.
The current dividend on a small investment in Sasol shares at 400c as recent as 25 years ago will now pay for a comfortable and cost-free drive in your current V8 4x4. Convert your gripes into profits.
Smokes cost more
Back to Telkom and its excessively high prices for ADSL and the eventual collapse of the company and the SA economy. Trader Vic and his family were one of the first to enjoy home ADSL in Pretoria. The basic cost of a 3G line is currently between R362 and R516/month - the lowest since introduction five years ago. At a minimal cost of less than R3 000 our house is currently a wireless hub and five computers enjoy 24-hour internet access.
In our household the cost of ADSL is less than what the average bloke spends on smokes every month and much less than our average spend on wine - and in that respect we don't even have expensive tastes, just large appetites.
My employers - Finweek and FIN24 - clearly value productivity as more important than a daily count of people behind their desks and has allowed seniors such as myself, Marc Hasenfuss (in Kommetjie) and Shaun Harris (somewhere in Durban) to work from home and save millions in fuel costs, frustration and time on SA's over-clogged roads.
The cost of ADSL is minute against that convenience, savings and increase in productivity.
ADSL in SA is apparently more expensive than in most developed countries worldwide. We don't argue that point. KFC and McDonald's are apparently cheaper in SA. But in the average household, and also in small and medium businesses, ADSL is an excellent buy and it won't destroy the competitiveness of your little business just because it's cheaper in Singapore.
Of free markets...
Trader Vic and all traders always welcome a free market, but if somebody - mostly government - does interfere, people should focus on the rules and how to profit from them.
Last year I called for an immediate two percentage points hike in interest rates. There was an immediate outcry and a call for differential interest rates. Subsidise mortgages, total advances of more than R600bn, and penalise credit cards, total advances less than R50bn, were the popular and most vocal calls.
Trader Vic would welcome such a stupidity. It would revitalise the nice old grey market in money and create some wonderful opportunities to make profits. Call me a pig or any other nice word, but I'll always try to profit from stupid rules and don't moralise about the spirit of the rules. It doesn't pay the bills.
...and insurance premiums
I see that the short-term insurance companies are going to hike their rates. It's a good sign. Their pricing power is improving and the silly, excessive competition that harmed profits over the past two years is something of the past.
This should be very good for the share prices of Mutual & Federal and Santam. Buy a few and the rise in your premium can be converted into a nice profit instead of something new to moan and groan about.
One of the early moaners has already posted an opinion that government is directly to blame for the rise in insurance premiums. But please don't try to follow his logic.