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Montpelier Re Holdings Ltd. Message Board

syzygyzys 40 posts  |  Last Activity: 15 hours ago Member since: Nov 11, 2002
  • Reply to

    O/T Aljazeera Reports a"NO" Vote

    by wingnut90266 Jul 5, 2015 5:08 PM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys 15 hours ago Flag

    Dividends and a dropping market have pushed me over my 40% cash threshold again, so I am recycling a little into VGK. Short term I am quite confident that it will go down, but it is probably the right time to accumulate.

  • syzygyzys syzygyzys Jul 2, 2015 7:53 AM Flag

    Would that it were true that you could always just listen to Cramer and do the opposite. Unfortunately, he is not that consistent. The long term future for railroads in the US is fascinating. I predict a decline in their business, but it doesn't mean that well managed ones have to have a decline in returns to shareholders. STX is an example of a company that has seen its business decline for a long time, but manages to return money to shareholders.

    Coal is simply not a growth industry. Anyone who wants to argue that is welcome to argue it with someone else. All you have to do is look at new coal fired power plants in the US, or new coal prospects developed away from existing infrastructure. Of course, it could come back, but I don't see it happening. There is a lot of risk capital going into energy generation and storage right now, and coal is not a part of it. Railroads do have healthy business segments - intermodal, for example. But that is a much more competitive business than coal, where usually the railroad is a monopoly - one railroad owns the only line into the mine, and the same one or another one owns the only line running near the power plant. As coal declines, so will the railroad's main profit center.

    Of course, not having to build new lines is a double edged sword. It means not growing the business, but it also means they might actually experience real, positive cash flow. That would surprise a lot of people.

    I wouldn't want to own a railroad unless I bought it in the utter depths of a recession. But it is definitely a place where you could make some money.

  • Reply to


    by staggman99 Jun 29, 2015 1:01 PM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys Jul 1, 2015 10:58 AM Flag

    Yes, it's a perennially mismanaged company, but agricultural assets in the southern hemisphere could be very valuable under the right (or wrong) conditions. I don't own it, but I have watched it for years. Seems like it belongs in any doomsday portfolio, along with gold and bitcoins.

  • Reply to


    by staggman99 Jun 29, 2015 1:01 PM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys Jul 1, 2015 7:32 AM Flag

    Stagg, what do you think of CRESY?

  • Reply to

    OT. SNR

    by jerseyvinny2 Jun 30, 2015 12:31 PM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys Jun 30, 2015 4:32 PM Flag

    I haven't done well with externally managed reits so I usually avoid them. It seems to me that the managers always do better than what they manage.

  • syzygyzys syzygyzys Jun 11, 2015 6:41 AM Flag

    Rocket, a little over a year ago you came over to the BRK board to recommend SHLD. You specifically said you had your entire net worth in it. So where are you getting the money to buy the reit? Did you sell some SHLD?

  • Reply to

    FRO takeover

    by golob.chad Jun 3, 2015 9:28 AM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys Jun 3, 2015 11:49 AM Flag

    I don't know anything about Norwegian takeover rules, but FRO is incorporated in Bermuda and also has its headquarters there. I expect the reason they do that is to escape as many taxes and rules as possible.

  • Reply to


    by williamlebotschy May 28, 2015 8:59 AM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys May 29, 2015 1:25 PM Flag

    Fair enough. Since I don't own a shipping stock now, I should probably read more and write less. I think most of these companies are good long term investments, I just mistrust the industry right now.

  • Reply to


    by williamlebotschy May 28, 2015 8:59 AM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys May 29, 2015 7:13 AM Flag

    Yes, I know that. But VLCC charter rates could be held up by storage contracts, with little need for shuttle tankers.

    My point is, if some offshore platforms are shut down, the shuttle tanker market will feel it first, while the open sea vessels are still collecting charter fees.

  • syzygyzys syzygyzys May 28, 2015 7:28 PM Flag

    Sears and Walmart don't really compete with one another very much. Walmart is big into food, Sears not at all. Sears tools and appliances compete somewhat with Sam's club, but Walmart isn't what is running Sears out of business.

    Kmart, on the other hand, lost the battle to Walmart about 40 years ago. Walmart might hire a few of those employees and even buy a store or two, but not many.

    I have seen a lot of Kmarts go out of business, and Walmart never moved in. Usually they were located not far away already, which is probably why the Kmart went out of business in the first place.

  • Reply to


    by williamlebotschy May 28, 2015 8:59 AM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys May 28, 2015 4:16 PM Flag

    Seems like shuttle tankers could be one segment that gets hurt if a lot of tankers are used for floating storage.

  • syzygyzys syzygyzys May 26, 2015 7:33 AM Flag

    While I wouldn't couch it quite the same way you do, Jad, I have a similar take. The "moat" gives companies a great opportunity to make money with very limited competition, or competition that is hamstrung in one way or another. This sounds good for investors, and it is, at least in the short run, but it can have deleterious consequences in the long run, as complacency sets in. There are some pretty remarkable of companies with nice moats just blowing it completely - usually smaller companies, though, like Iroquois Brands, with the larger ones just slowly losing their advantage. And that is the problem. You have to get rid of them eventually. Many moats in the BRK stable have disappeared, but the companies are often still there. The most obvious example to me is GEICO, which is essentially a commodity business now.

    I think their is a lot of complacency surrounding BRK. "Just leave it to Warren, he's the smartest guy in the room and he always does fine", and internally, they look a little complacent as well. Nothing can bite you harder than complacency.

  • Reply to

    Good day to sell some puts

    by nomorehomes May 22, 2015 3:41 PM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys May 23, 2015 2:06 PM Flag

    The VIX has only been around since 1993, so "most of the bear markets" occurred before it was introduced.

  • Reply to

    Don't go to work on Monday

    by fmalone2013 May 22, 2015 7:51 PM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys May 23, 2015 7:48 AM Flag

    Plus, it's Memorial Day and the office is probably closed anyway (in the US, at least).

  • Reply to

    IRA #3- Bought UNP at $102.22/share

    by axpkocop May 13, 2015 12:00 PM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys May 15, 2015 7:10 AM Flag

    It does seem a little late in the economic cycle to buy smokestack stocks. If there is a recession in 2017, UNP's price will start to reflect it soon. Still, the dividend is probably safe.

  • syzygyzys by syzygyzys May 12, 2015 7:27 PM Flag

    Hey, does anyone know anything about LYV? Seems like a great concept, their ticketing subsidiary has a Buffet style "moat" and pricing power, but they don't manage to make any money. What is wrong?


  • Reply to

    OT: PSEC bouncing up

    by marklibera May 7, 2015 10:25 AM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys May 7, 2015 2:53 PM Flag

    Stagg was specifically referring to BDCs and REITs, so the comparison to Apple misses his point.

  • syzygyzys by syzygyzys May 5, 2015 9:22 AM Flag

    One of my favorite holdings, WYN, has dropped in price recently. If you need outsized yields, this isn't the place, but I really like this company. I sold my RLJ to buy it because I didn't want to be overweighted in hotels, and RLJ was a great stock for me, and is still a great stock. If you like reits and/or hotels, you should look at WYN..

    They have three divisions, but in one, timeshares, they are a very rare company that is both a monopoly and a monopsony. If you want to buy one of their timeshares, you almost have to buy it from them. If you want to sell one, you almost have to sell it to them. What a racket! The division is very profitable. The rest of the company isn't bad either.

    Incidentally, I seem to be drawn to companies with ticker symbols that sound like they belong to other, better known companies, like HP and WYN. I am talking about Wyndham Worldwide, not Wynn Resorts.

  • Reply to


    by staggman99 May 4, 2015 2:05 PM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys May 4, 2015 5:19 PM Flag

    If you like SDRL, buy SFL. The big problem with SFL is that SDRL or FRO goes bankrupt. SFL could make a lot of money even if those two just stagger along, barely making ends meet.

    I don't own any of them, but I'm looking for an entry point for SFL.

  • Reply to


    by staggman99 May 3, 2015 12:28 PM
    syzygyzys syzygyzys May 4, 2015 5:10 PM Flag


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