Monday, June 15, 2009

Busy With Everything Other Than Investments

Several readers that are fortunate enough to personally know Crusty have asked what I've been up to since I haven't blogged in a number of weeks. I've had difficulty responding, but assured them that I was sure that it was important stuff.

Lets see, I've made a batch of Limoncello using Everclear grain alcohol which will give birth near the end of Summer. My golf game has been honed to a smooth 16 handicap. And mostly I've had to closely supervise my wife as she doesn't understand that we are in a recession and embarked on a house renovation project that is capable of keeping the craftsmen of Omaha busy for months. My crustiness, and insistence on bids, has kept the financial pain to a minimum. I should have made the Limoncello earlier so I could have used it in the renovation negotiations.

On the investment front not much has changed. I remain convinced that the market's enthusiasm has gotten way ahead of where it should be and have not been pursuaded to join the stampede. My June covered calls will expire on Friday and I will keep the premium and sell calls again on the stocks that I do own.

The only addition I've made to my long portfolio is an ETF proxy for natural gas:UNG. All commodities have been on a tear this year as inflation fears have grown and the dollar has weakened. That is all commodities except natural gas! There has been too much supply and weak demand. Inventories have been growing each month. However, drilling has been curtailed and futures are pointing to significantly higher prices this winter. Ratios of oil price to natural gas prices have gotten way out of whack when compared to history. I've been adding to a position in UNG while exiting the few oils and drillers that I owned, with the exception of Conoco Phillips, COP, that I've kept for the dividend. I don't plan on betting the farm on UNG, but it has a lot more potential upside that remaining downside risk.

Since times are slow in the investment thought area, I'm thinking of starting another blog of Crusty's brilliant musings on every other topic. It's fun growing older and finding fault in nearly everything. I feel the need to share my disdain for the way things are run; local, state, and federal. If only they would ask Crusty. Stay tuned for Crusty's Common Sense. Thomas Paine would be proud.

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