Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Conversations with Mr S.

Me - You did say that who ever got elected after Trump was going to be really painful. The Tarot President is going to be hell. I can see her strolling up to a meeting with China with her Tarot deck and crystals. And China is just going to look at her like  - yeah bitch.

Mr S. - Everyone is going to ask why she got us into a war. And she's going to say - because they were a Sagittarius

Sunday, July 28, 2019

The backstory.

Has anyone ever seen a COSTCO closed on Sundays?


I was out in Hayward this weekend marveling at all of the dead real estate.  I didn't go there just for that. I was there for another reason. But couldn't help but notice it. Even for that area I was a little taken back.  Which is why when I ran across this Costco I was like - this isn't a dead Costco, is it? When does that happen? But oddly there was a new car parked at the doors.

When I went to take a picture - you could see a huge sign in the lobby saying they were closed on Sundays. Which was also confusing to me. I thought they were open all the time.

I don't shop there, so I don't know. But why would you close on a Sunday? Seems like on of your most profitable days!

Saturday, July 27, 2019

What now?

Hiding out from the heat today. So I'm trying to wrap up some projects. Nothing crazy. I needed to put some pads on this super heavy table I have. You can see the pad behind the instructions.  No one needs instructions for this...... right? GOOD! Because I think the instructions made me confused. Are they telling me I can use this in an electrical outlet - just don't let kids touch it. And why would anyone use them in an electrical outlet? Who does that? I'm confused.

Friday, July 26, 2019

Groundhog Day.

Bay Area home prices, sales tumble.

“Despite the lower cost for some, plus a healthy economic backdrop, the housing market remains sluggish with activity dropping across the home-price spectrum,” said CoreLogic analyst Andrew LePage. “This suggests many would-be buyers are still priced out or are concerned about buying near a possible price peak.”

Monthly sales figures for June were lowest for the month since 2008, when the real estate market collapsed and the U.S. economy dove into a deep recession.

Year-over-year sales dropped 14.6 percent in Santa Clara County, 21.6 percent in Contra Costa County, 14.9 percent in Alameda County, and 21.7 percent in San Francisco County, according to CoreLogic." emphasis mine

Maybe we never really left the recession and the Trump bump was just a temporary reprieve. All year the data has been compared to 2008/9. Yet if you talk to people - they think the economy is fine. But the charts don't think the economy is fine. And I believe charts over people.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Oh my.

‘We’re Full,’ Car Dealers Say as Auto Sales Slow After a Long Boom.

"Car dealers around the country said that the upgrade cycle they rode to rich profits in recent years appears to be ending and that they are seeing fewer buyers despite offering discounts and other incentives. So, dealers say they are ordering fewer vehicles from manufacturers.

“We are turning down cars and are being more picky on the cars we stock,” said Brian Benstock, general manager of Paragon Honda in New York City. “We just can’t take more. We’re full.”

Ford is laying off 12,000 people in Europe. I think they closed every plant they have. I might be exaggerating.

Nissan is laying off 10,000.

Tesla - LOL

And..... we are back in price discovery.

There is this house that I always kept an eye on. It was an old people house. I thought one day I would buy that house and flip it. But someone else bought it and had the same idea, which is fine because I am not in that market currently. The house needed to be brought back to life by someone.

Today I drove by it and it was still on the market. Four months later. The flipper did a pretty nice job, but this is about the point when agents give up on you. Real Estate is like a popularity contest. If you don't sell within two months, agents stop dropping by. If this goes on for too much longer that guy might lose his shirt.

So I had to go through the MLS where things were getting marked down after 6 days. Price reductions everywhere. Things had been being right priced there for a while, and I'd hoped that lower interest rates would perk the market up. But that doesn't appear to be happening.

Hell, someone is trying to get rid of a mobile home. They listed it for 219,000 on 9/18 and it's still on the market! It's now down to 185,000. A MOBLE HOME! It has marble countertops, and stainless steel appliances. It's pretty nice inside. Another mobile home is being marked down after 18 days and asking 176,833. Those two are the same size. And there is yet another mobile home taking a 15 grand price cut after 39 days. Started at 160,000. Now 145,000. It's very unusual to see this many mobile homes on the market. Clearly they are the cheapest places to live.

It looks like lots of contracts are falling out. Probably because we are back in price discovery. So it will be interesting to see what kind of rate cut we get.

Housing Bubble 2 Lost its Mojo in the San Francisco Bay Area: House Prices Drop 8%.

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

I guess nothing can bring this market down. Not even China and Russia menacing South Korea. It's kinda barely like it even happened. It's a big deal...... right?

It's about time.

The Department of Justice just launched a broad probe into whether big tech companies like Amazon, Facebook, and others illegally harm competition.

I am very much a free market person, but what I've seen Google and Facebook do over the last decade is just not right.

When these two companies can basically disappear your internet presence - it's just evil. They have basically become the mob bosses of the internet. It would be impossible to start a new search engine right now. They have also basically destroyed all of the innovation in the Valley. It's just impossible to fight them and they have their claws in EVERYTHING.

The sad thing is they beg for regulation, with a twinkle in their eye because they know they can get around the regulations. So it's super phoney.

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Waymo Spotting.

I'm surprised I haven't seen Waymo in more cities. They must have logged the most miles because every time I'm in MountainView, Palo Alto, or Los Altos I see one. And I don't even get out there that much these days. We are all city locked by traffic. It can take an hour to get from Palo Alto to MountainView these days.

I am a little fascinated by their gear. That whole dome thing, and the side mounted spinning lidar. This has got to be the most expensive solution to a problem. But whatevs.

Saturday, July 20, 2019

An Aston I've never seen before.

I was fairly captivated by the tail lights. Which is normally not my thing - so you got a lot of shots of the back and almost nothing of the front.

As soon as I found out the grill didn't move like Bently's new concept I was like meh. Back to the tail lights.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Yes - I am coming back.

I am the kind of girl that when I get anxious I sort of shut down.  And since there isn't really any new tech or cars or anything - the only thing I want to talk about it the frightening stuff coming out of other economies. But since the stock market is at an all time high and the consumer is still spending - it seems pretty ridiculous to blog this. I am not a perma bear.

In the 80's it didn't matter what the rest of the world did. But after 20 or 30 years of offshoring I just don't believe that what is happening in the rest of the world won't stick to us. The rest of the world is in recession. I think we are also in recession we just don't know it yet. And the wide divergence just makes me feel horrible and crazy. You just can't look at any chart and not feel the way do. Yet - most people don't look at charts. So.....

Saturday, July 13, 2019

How long can they circle the drain?

I haven't been going to Fry's these days because it makes me feel sad. Plus there is just nothing interesting to buy or browse right now.

But...... I had been hearing some crazy stories, like some stores are not even stocking 9 volt batteries, so we decided to pop in today. And it had to have been the saddest place on earth to work. Last time I was in a few months ago - I noticed they had widened all their isles.

But, this time you could tell they were just taking isles out because you can still see the outlines of them on the floors.

Lots of empty isles.

their battery isle was sparse, but I didn't check for 9 volts because the rest was just so shocking.

This is the TV section with empty isles.

From the other side.

They haven't sold Mac stuff in a while, but they have never put anything else in its place.

This area they took out two racks.

The things they ARE selling is odd like backpacks.

And garden sheers.

And they were fully stocked on mace. Mr S. said that maybe they knew the apocalypse was coming and they needed to be prepared. which sort of does explain some of the stuff they are selling.

Stationary. You won't have the internets anymore when the apocalypse hits. So maybe you need old time paper.

More garden stuff.

The first three isles are toys, perfume, and as seen on TV. Really hard any electronics at all these days.

Staplers? Maybe to put up missing posters in the apocalypse?

And the sad thing about this whole thing is that it isn't completely Fry's fault. Google and facebook and those guys have sucked so much productivity out of the economy - there is just really nothing new to buy right now. Those guys said - screw making products - these humans are gold mines! Let's just make money off of that. And then they proceeded to buy, or destroy any company that had an actual product.

No one on earth can tell me that this is a "booming" economy. I am not a Trump hater or a never Trumper. I admitted voting for Trump before it was fashionable. I am a capitalist.