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Business Ownership and Wealth Management

Dana Barfield

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Top Stories by Dana Barfield

This time of year is a favorite for children of all ages – I happen to be one of these kids – in part because of the television programs that are shown around Christmas. A Charlie Brown Christmas, Santa Claus is Coming to Town, Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer, and How the Grinch Stole Christmas, have been favorites of mine since TV went from exclusively black and white to poor quality color. This is no coincidence as these programs were made in the mid 1960’s. As I was watching this year, it occurred to me that if at this time in history Christmas had not yet been established, if somehow Christmas needed to be “started” in 2009, it wouldn’t stand a chance. Christmas would be doomed before it ever got started. First of all, the only time you can say Jesus Christ anymore is when you hit your thumb with a hammer. You can’t mention Him at City Hall, you can’t display a crè... (more)

BP as a Prospective Investment

Typically, when an event occurs that causes a stock’s price to drop significantly we would look at that stock as a potential investment. This is not and will not be the case with BP. Our first criteria for investment, is that the business be one of significant quality. BP cannot be considered quality. As David Leonhardt pointed out in his May 31 New York Times article entitled “Spillonomics: Underestimating Risk”. BP has been a company seeking profits to the exclusion of other equally serious responsibilities. Leonhardt wrote, “Years before the Deepwater Horizon rig blew, BP was ... (more)

Hedge Funds or Asset Allocation - What Does Work?

While tracking the market today, I expanded the S & P 500 graph time window from the normal mode of a month or a year, to run from 1970 through the present. What I found illustrates a fascinating principle of wealth building. The blue line represents that value of the S&P 500 index. I overlaid the bright pink line to show what would have been the normal path of the economy had the trend from 1975 to 1995 persisted. Obviously it did not. The period from 1995 to the present represents a time of unprecedented “activity”. What we can also see is that activity produced no sustainable, w... (more)

I’m Basically A Whore

Wealth Management on Ulitzer These words remain very clear in my mind, but they were shocking to me (as they probably are to you) the first time I heard them. In fact, when the man made this statement to me, it took me so far aback, that he had to repeat them. “I’m basically a whore,” he says sheepishly and with regret in his voice. Of course I said, “What to you mean?” The man who made this statement was the Michigan based marketing head of a money management firm headquartered in Connecticut. He was responsible for bringing new money into the firm for investment. He didn’t manage... (more)

Unemployment – Causes and Consequences

Somewhere on the internet last week, mention was made that unemployment for high income people was (essentially) non-existent, while extremely high for low income earners. I was able to track down that data for the fourth quarter of 2009. Here it is by income: As you can clearly see the lower income levels are experiencing the greatest difficulty finding jobs. Interestingly enough, this data is not making its way into the mainstream. But even more interesting is the set of “circumstances” that has caused this, or at least occurred in the same approximate time frame. Minimum Wage... (more)