Archive for February, 2011

New E.T. Movie This Summer!

Posted in Movies on February 28th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – Comments Off

After Several delays and budget problems, it looks like the new E.T. movie is finally hitting the big screen this summer.  This one is going to have a little more edge to it – but still looks very cool.  I’ll let you know when I get the exact date!

While we wait here is the just released trailer!

Power Bands Really Work – Watch This Video Proof

Posted in woo on February 28th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – Comments Off

It’s a bummer that the video has commercials but – it is so cool.

The Value Of Investment Diversification

Posted in investing on February 28th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – Comments Off

NOTE:  This post is part of an ongoing education series.  This information is for educational purposes only.  This information does not constitute investment advice.  No rational person would make investment decisions based on a blog post.  Please consult with your financial advisor before taking any action.  If you think it is OK to make investment decisions based on a blog post, then for the love of the FSM – Stop reading this blog.

Money Monday

Diversification is one of the most important things you can do to reduce the risk in your portfolio.  If you have all of your money in one stock in could go up 100% or lose 100% .  If you owned Enron or Kmart you could have lost all of your money.  Risk can be measured mathematically and it is called volatility.  This is an image of a stock with high volatility.

high volatile stock

Below is a picture of stock with low volatility.  In this example, the stock went down.  Volatility is not related to the direction of the stock price but to the rate of change (up and down) in the price.  More movement equals more volatility which is said to be more risk.

low volatile stock

If you own only one stock you could get a big surprise if the company does not make its expected revenue numbers.  If you own more stocks, the effect of one stock becomes much smaller.  The idea is that while some stock go up – some go down but on average they go up with much less volatility. 

From Wikipedia

In 1977 Elton and Gruber worked out an empirical example of the gains from diversification. Their approach was to consider a population of 3290 securities available for possible inclusion in a portfolio, and to consider the average risk over all possible randomly chosen n-asset portfolios with equal amounts held in each included asset, for various values of n. Their results are summarized in the following table. It can be seen that most of the gains from diversification come for n≤30.

Number of Stocks in Portfolio Average Standard Deviation of Annual Portfolio Returns Ratio of Portfolio Standard Deviation to Standard Deviation of a Single Stock
1 49.24% 1.00
2 37.36 0.76
4 29.69 0.60
6 26.64 0.54
8 24.98 0.51
10 23.93 0.49
20 21.68 0.44
30 20.87 0.42
40 20.46 0.42
50 20.20 0.41
400 19.29 0.39
500 19.27 0.39
1000 19.21 0.39

The Important thing to see is that 1 stock has a volatility of  100% and 30 stocks have a volatility of 42% (of one stock).  With more stocks you dramatically decrease the volatility / risk.

Most investors do not have the funds to buy stock in 30 different companies.  Just $5,000 per company would take $150,000 plus all of the fees involved to make the trades.  What you can do, is buy a diversified stock mutual fund or even better – an index fund.

No One Comes To The Father Except Through Me – John 14:6

Posted in religion on February 28th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – Comments Off

pope Charged For Crimes Against Humanity

Posted in Catholic Church on February 27th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – Comments Off

From the Irish Times.

TWO GERMAN lawyers have initiated charges against Pope Benedict XVI at the International Criminal Court, alleging crimes against humanity.

Christian Sailer and Gert-Joachim Hetzel, based at Marktheidenfeld in the Pope’s home state of Bavaria, last week submitted a 16,500-word document to the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court at the Hague, Dr Luis Moreno Ocampo.

Their charges concern “three worldwide crimes which until now have not been denounced . . . (as) the traditional reverence toward ‘ecclesiastical authority’ has clouded the sense of right and wrong”.

They claim the Pope “is responsible for the preservation and leadership of a worldwide totalitarian regime of coercion which subjugates its members with terrifying and health-endangering threats”.

Sounds good to me.  What do you think?  Should they put the pope on trial?

They claim the Catholic Church “acquires its members through a compulsory act, namely, through the baptism of infants that do not yet have a will of their own”. This act was “irrevocable” and is buttressed by threats of excommunication and the fires of hell.

It is the ultimate shakedown or protection racket.  Just like the mob, they create the problem that does not really exist and for just 10% of your income they will provide you protection from the problem.  It is a scam!

Greta Christina To Visit University Of Illinois In Champaign Urbana

Posted in atheists on February 27th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – Comments Off

Greta Christina will give her talk at the U of I.

She will talk on March 10th at 7pm

Gregory Hall Room 319.

I expect her talk will have something to do with atheism and sex!

After 5PM you can park in Log E3 (just west of the Main Library).  This is on the SE corner of 6th and Armory.