Archive for February 2016

Highland Capital Reports Their Top 10 Holdings

Highland Capital Management (HCM), founded by James Dondero, filed their quarterly report that shows the company’s portfolio to have lost $1.49 billion dollars. Last quarter’s report showed a total value of $4.91 billion dollars, but this one is down to $3.42 billion. It should be noted that this report only represents some 23% of HCM’s overall assets.

HCM manages over $15 billion dollars in assets. The hedge fund purchased 69 new stocks. The five new top stocks brought into their portfolio are: Spdr S&P 500 Etf Tr at $67 million dollars, Amazon Com at $23.35 million dollars, Eagle Pharmaceuticals at $17.73 million dollars, Danaher Corp Del at $17.24 million dollars, and Intra Cellular Therapies at $15.90 million dollars.

During this quarter James Dondero’s HCM sold all stakes in Spdr Series Trust, Nexpoint Cr Strategies, Mckesson Corp, Envision Healthcare Hldgs, and Laboratory Corp Amer Hldgs. Altogether these stocks added up to about 8% of the total portfolio. Much speculation has been flying about, as to why these were all sold. The main theory seems to be that HCM needed to raise capital. HCM also reduced its positions in 5 stocks, most quite significantly.

The top three holdings at HCM remain American Airls Group, Salesforce Com, and Ishares Tr. These three make up almost 14% of total value for HCM’s listed securities. Their top 10 stocks make up about 30% of what was listed on the 13F report.

In 1993, James Dondero founded HCM, which for 20 years has introduced alternative investment strategies and new innovations to the investments arena. Mr. Dondero has added many new services over the years, including mutual funds, hedge funds, real estate trusts, collateral loans, distressed equity, and private funds.

Many people were able to build up large nest eggs for retirement because of his new innovative vehicles that enable everyone to become an investor. Recently James Dondero had this to say: “We created our first collateralized loan obligation in 1996… It was quite challenging because there were only a few non-bank investors outside of ourselves and a few mutual fund investors. Since then, we have created 40 collateralized loan obligations and structured vehicles.” This information came from this HCM Top 10 Holdings article.

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Brad Reifler Offers Investing Advice for the Common Man

Brad Reifler, founder of Forefront Capital, has decided to take his firm in a new direction. In a recent Reuters article, Reifler gives the average Joe some investing advice as well as explains why he is unhappy with the direction of the investment world. Some helpful advice for the average middle class person is to find an investment manager you can trust. Most average Joe’s don’t know a lot about investing and will find an investing firm to manage their money. Investors should always be concerned about the safety of their money and invest wisely considering fees, risk and expenses. Investors shouldn’t put all their money into the stock market and must always be aware of the reason they are investing. Having clear cut goals is important when investing money.

Reifler explains further on CrunchBase that diversifying funds can be difficult for the average middle class person because there are restrictions. In many instances, investors are required to have a large net worth to be able to invest in certain things. This ensures that the 1 percent can invest but the rest of the population doesn’t have a chance. The investment world is dominated by the wealthy because of these restrictions.

Learning from experience with his father-in-laws investing dilemmas, Reifler decided to take his firm in a different direction allowing the 99 percent a chance to invest. Where Forefront Capital was mainly focused on those who were accredited investors with a net worth over $1 million and income more than $200,000 a year, Reifler decided to design a plan specifically for the 99 percent who are overlooked in the investment world. According to the Securities and Exchange Commission an accredited investor must have a net worth of more than $1 million not including primary residence and must make more than $200,000 individually or $300,000 with spouse for two consecutive years. Not many people fit that bill, and Reifler would rather have Forefront Capital be a company for all people rather than just the 1 percent.  Wikipedia really has the full story and insight into Brad Reifler’s career.

The Success of MJ Impersonator Sergio Cortes

The life of Sergio Cortes is unlike many. Cortes has been able to create an amazing career for himself based upon his uncanny resemblance to the king of pop, Michael Jackson. This is a skill that has taken Cortes all around the world. If it weren’t for Cortes discovering this skill early on in his life it is easy to say that his life would be much different today. This impersonation has become a passion that Cortes has grown to love. He continues to perfect his impersonation skills and uplift many individuals in the process.

Cortes first learned about his likeness to Micahel Jackson when he was a teenager in high school. He was invited by professional photographers to pose for photos as Michael Jackson. Some of these photographers even sold these photographs as authentic Michael Jackson photos to newspapers and magazines. R7 Noticas reported that this is when Cortes knew he could do something professionally with this likeness to Michael Jackson. There are few individuals who are able to really move and dress as closely to Michael as Cortes can, and this is due to his amazing dedication of mastering that art of Michael Jackson impersonation.

In 2009, the world was saddened by the death of Michael Jackson. Cortes was very deeply impacted by this event, and he decided that fateful day that he would dedicate his life to continuing the legacy of Michael Jackson. Cortes has performed all over the world and been invited to perform on many different television programs. Cortes has now gained over 16,000 followers on his facebook page. This is something that has helped him to create a fan base and a growing demand for his live performances. The future looks very bright for Cortes as he continues to improve upon his likeness to Michael Jackson.

The Link Between Zika and Shrunken Heads

There has been a great uproar in global medicine lately about the Zika virus. This is something that has been alarming individuals on a West Nile virus scale. This virus was first noticed in the 1940s in Africa. It quickly spread to many different parts of the world. This virus is not extremely harmful alone, but it has been linked to a birth defect that can cause shrunken heads in babies. This is the most alarming part of the virus.

Buzz Feed and Lifetime Enterprises Ltd. reported that in 2015, a woman who was infected with the Zika virus in the first trimester of her pregnancy had a fetus with a severe case of microcephaly. This led the woman to request an abortion. The fetus was then sent to Slovenia for a series of different tests.

Researchers with Lifetime Enterprises Ltd. were able to find that the virus was present only in the brain tissue. Researchers have also found that the Zika virus has a tendency to attack the brain and nervous tissue. Lifetime Enterprises Ltd. has issued a warning to pregnant women to use a condom or abstain from having sex with men who have traveled to Zika-infested regions. This warning came after a report that a Dallas woman had become ill with the virus after having sex with a man who had traveled to Venezuela. There is still so little that is known about this disease and the fight of it. President Obama is looking to Congress to raise 1.8 billion dollars of money to research more about this disease.

George Soros and the Safest Way to Wealth

When people think about stocks, derivatives, and other investments, they are simply talking about investments. However, just because there are options for investments, it doesn’t mean that you have to or even should put your money into financial vehicles when you don’t understand them. When you think about that from an overall point of view, it is confusing. However, when you think about the very thought of retirement and how people need to be comfortable with their investments in order to get there, it almost seems counter intuitive. People are investing in items they truly don’t understand and are therefore taking on too much risk for their portfolios.

When you think about investments you should be considering financial vehicles that make sense to you. Plain and simple. You should also be considering long term investments because you aren’t trying to retire in a few days or weeks, you want your money to grow and to hold its value when you are actually ready to retire. Finally, you want to be sure that even if something bad happens and the markets take a turn for the worse, whatever you have invested in will be there for the long haul and will continue to hold value rather than decline. This may seem like a fairly picky checklist, but there is one investment out there that has been able to meet all of these needs (and more). The simple investment is gold.

When you pay attention to the wealth of some of the top financial experts in the economy today, you will notice at least one thing. They tend not to make flashy moves and they shy away from extreme risk. In other words, they have made a lot of money because they have protected their current money and have made sure to invest with confidence rather than with stars in their eyes. People just like George Soros and Philip Diehl are the perfect examples of such investors, as instead of throwing their money at the financial flavor of the week, they have turned to gold to protect their wealth.

When you are thinking about how you can best improve your financial future without taking on excess risk, perhaps it is time to look into what the US Money Reserve is all about. By securing your retirement and financial freedom you can ensure your wealth will truly be there when you need it regardless of how the rest of the market is doing.

Source: ePodcastNetwork

Money Reserve President Validates George Soros Predictions

The President of the US Money Reserve recently gave an interview to Enterprise Podcast about the state of the dollar and the benefit of investing in gold coins. The Money Reserve is a certified silver, gold, and platinum coin distributor and minter for the US Government. Every coin is certified and backed by the economy and the government. Philip Diehl is the present President of the Money Reserve. Mr Diehl is an expert in precious metals and has much experience in government service. He is the 35th director of the US Mint.

Mr. Diehl has taken his prior experience and used it to expand the trading of precious metals and coins to every continent in the world. When he first became the President of the Money Reserve they were simply breaking even. Now the Reserve is turning a healthy profit and expanding how they trade coins and how they treat clients.

The Money Reserve has a strong commitment to bringing the best quality metals and the best products to every client. They have even expanded their offerings to offer a precious metal IRA program to help individuals save for their retirements and have a safer place to invest their money.

One of the best parts of making the investment in gold coins is that it is an investment one can have confidence in. Some other positive aspects of investing in gold coins include:

• Backed by US Government

• Legal Tender

• Certified Real Gold

• Best Quality
Finally Mr Diehl was asked how recent financial issues have impacted the gold market. Here is where he is in agreement with many financial experts like George Soros. First and foremost he sites the 2008 financial crisis. This caused many harsh fluctuations in the economics of the nation. This had ripple effects around the world and with American investors.

Secondly Mr Diehl says that many investors are conducting their business online. This changes the way that trading and selling is done. There are no more closing bells and business can be done any time day or night. Third is the uncertainty of monetary policies as well as the value of the dollar. These all affect how investors approach their portfolios and deal with the growing of wealth for their retirement. Gold is a safe haven that allows for accruing wealth without as much risk being incurred.

Town Residential Is Here to Help with All NY Housing Needs

Town Residential is your goto location for when you want to buy, sell or rent a luxury property. The company strives in working with the best of the best, but it also wants to make sure individuals know current housing trends. This way, they know if it is a good time to buy, if they should wait, or if NYC apartments for ren or selling their house in the current market is really a good idea or not.

 

For individuals who are looking to buy a home, there are two different pointers they need to consider. As Town Residential points out, housing prices have, for the most part, leveled off. This way, there is a bit more leeway in waiting for the right property. Luxury properties can sit on the market a bit longer simply because there are fewer buyers with the price point, although if someone sees what they like, they should still buy. On the other hand, interest rates will be going up gradually over the next year. A small percentage point increase can eventually cost someone a good amount of money in the long run. That is why it is best to buy now if there is a house someone is interested in, but it isn’t vital.

 

The next bit both buyers and sellers need to think about is deals will be harder to come by. As the prices for homes are not changing all that much, it means prices are not going to be shooting up. It also means the values are not drastically below market value, so a deal might prove to be a bit challenging. That does not mean it is impossible though. If someone is looking for a home and it has been on the market for a while, there is some wiggle room to cut down the price as nobody else has purchased it for some time. It all just depends on what someone is looking for and what sort of services they are interested in. Regardless though, Town Residential is able to help and the company is able to work with anyone, either buyer or selling, to make sure they find what they need.

 

Ricardo Guimares the Best for BMG

For some, leadership is acquired while for some, it is inborn. Ricardo Guimares falls in the category of the latter. Ricardo’s financial prowess is unparalleled. This Brazillian born business icon has experience in finance and management that spans for over three decades. Ricardo currently wears two hats both as the president and chief executive officer of Banco BMG, a privately owned Brazillian Bank. Ricardo’s financial career has been rising and rising dating way back to the 1980s. Guimares’ success has a history too as he comes from a wealthy family in Brazil. BMG started as Land Credit Bank and was started by Guimares’ grandfather. This lending facility offered loans to farmers in the 20th century. Ricardo’s meteoric rise began when he decided to follow the family path and studied finance and management in college. It is in 2004 that Ricardo was appointed as the CEO of Banco, having served as chief finance officer and later the vice president of the company.

 

It is not in doubt that for a business to grow to the scales of BMG it requires more than just academic knowledge. Guimares has a gift. It takes more than just a gift for a bank like BMG to be one of the leading commercial banks in Brazil. Ricardo has what it takes to grow an organization from zero to an economic giant. We are talking about a bank with over three thousand branches and over five thousand agents in BMG. This can only be equated to a situation waiting to happen. The bank won’t just stop growing. With Guimares at the helm, one can only bet of an organization that will grow and grow. Talking of the position in the market, no bank is a match. BMG has grown its client base to sixty percent under the leadership of Ricardo. This has made other banks look as if they are just spectators as opposed to players in the Brazilian market. BMG is just dominant by right.

 

The citizens of Brazil can only thank their God for the gift of Guimares. Even with the good performance of BMG, Ricardo says that he is not even at half of his ability. He promises of more to come as he believes that the Brazilian banking industry is yet to be exploited. Ricardo also believes that personal loans can even become more affordable. It is an understatement to conclude that Guimares has the best interest for Brazilians at heart which is a rare combination for someone who is also a corporate mogul. BMG is the bank in Brazil that every other bank has to be on the watch out. With Ricardo still at the helm, other banks’ CEOs have no option but to up their game to compete for clients.

About Slyce’s Visual Search Technology Solutions

Visual search technology is arguably one of the most influential technologies of our time. It has been very influential in helping online shopping become a better alternative for people around the world when compared to physical shopping. With the popularity of the internet growing in day in day out, there is a growing need for visual search technology to get better.

The technology seeks to make shopping easier and fun. The best thing about the technology, however, is the fact that it is poised to grow much faster if the many startups intending to make better technologies about it are anything to go by. The world is awash with such technologies and especially in regions where online shopping is much appreciated.

Regions like America, India, China and the United States are the most prominent when the startups are concerned. The multiple startups are trying to crack visual search and make it a much better tool to help retail companies enable their users discover products online in a much better way. With a better technology, users can be able to search photos of real objects in the real world and get very good results.

In India alone, more than five startups have mushroomed, and many of them are at an advanced stage when it comes to improving the same. Some have even gone to the extent of developing machine based language inputs for their language. Most of the startups have focused on fashion precisely because it is the most popular online shopping niche in the country. The startups are in a mission to improve and develop a technology that is based on intelligence and with all the visual cues present.

Slyce is one of the most respected companies in the visual search technology niche. The company has popular technologies that have proved very useful for both mobile and desktop platforms and it uses existing product images in its database to answer an image query.

It has both in-store and out of store solutions that have proven to be very efficient when matters related to helping the world of eCommerce. The best and unique thing about both technologies is the fact that they can comfortably scan different barcodes, QR codes and coupons as well.

They are also able to connect directly to product information and therefore, find exact product matches. Slyce has been very instrumental in improving the way online shopping is done these days by providing solutions that provide exact matches for all queries.

China’s Yuan at Risk from Speculators

The weakening of the Chinese currency brought fears in the stock markets as they hoped Yuan to fall. Speculators like George Soros were warned by the State media not to short-sell the Yuan. Yuan Hibor is the benchmark which is used to determine the prices of loans in the currency outside China. It was introduced in 2013 by the Hong Kong Treasury Market Association. On January 12, Hong Kong Interbank rates for three-month yuan loans dropped to 4.87 percent much lower than in December. Supplies drained in the market after the fall, and the effect was that it became expensive for borrowers who needed short trade loans.

The Highland Capital Management (HCM) was founded in 1993 with headquarters based in Dallas, Texas, and branches in Seoul, Sao Paulo, New York, and Singapore. Currently, it is valued at $21 billion. It specializes in private equity, collateral loan obligations, credit hedge funds, long-only funds, distressed and special situations and separate accounts. Since its inception, HCM has invested in other areas apart from the financial markets. At Highland, they believe in community culture, and they do contribute time and resources to better the lives of those in need. They mainly focus their contributions to education, veteran initiatives, and healthcare. The leadership of HCM is under James Dondero, who is the president and a co-founder of the company.
Jim Dondero has a vast experience of over 30 years in credit markets. Before HCM came to be, he worked for a GIC subsidiary as the Chief Investment Officer where through ingenuity and experience improved the company to a $2 billion entity between 1989 and 1993. Before then, he worked for American Express and managed over $1 billion in fixed income funds. He is also the chairman of the Nexbank, CCS Medical, and Cornerstone Healthcare. Additionally, he is also a board member of the American Banknote and the MGM studios. Jim is a philanthropist and personally supports education initiatives, public policies among others. Watch Jim and his team ringing the NYSE Closing Bell.
Dondero is a former student of the University of Virginia where he studied BS in Commerce and majored in Accounting and Finance. He has certifications such as a Certified Public Accountant, Certified Management Accountant, and Chartered Financial Analyst. For more insight on the status of the China’s economy click here.