Friday, July 20, 2007

Friday - Prosperity for God's People


Big Drop or Drop in a Bucket?
Our speculation Thursday night that the S&P could drop 20 points became a reality before Wall Street went to lunch Friday. The predicted sell off could provide a bounce Monday, but unless the market puts in a new high first, we believe that 1482 on the $SPX is where the large speculators are ultimately positioned to get long going into the end of the year. Until that happens we anticpate plenty of opportunities both long and short on an intra-day basis. The potential for Monday to be an inside day is certainly in the cards.

Sen. Bennett Renews Call for Hearing into Stock Market Fraud
The text of this speech will not be published or become a part of the congressional record until Monday. But we have it for you now.

Mark Faulk July 20, 2007

In a speech on the floor of the U.S. Senate today, Senator Bob Bennett (R-UT) called for Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd to conduct a hearing into stock market fraud, specifically addressing the issue of naked short selling. Sen. Bennett has been a long time proponent of stock market reform, and was instrumental in proposing a Senate Banking Committee hearing into naked short selling as early as late 2004, which were eventually shelved by then Banking Committee Chairman Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL). He said that Sen. Dodd, who has entered the 2008 Presidential election, was willing to conduct a hearing into the issue:

“I think it is serious enough that we ought to have a hearing about this in the Banking Committee, and I have spoken to the Chairman of the Banking Committee, Senator Dodd, and asked him if it wouldn’t be possible for us to have much of a hearing at some point in the future, and he’s expressed a willingness to do that. I can understand, we can’t set a time for that right now. There are too many other things going on in the Banking Committee, but I’m delighted to know that he’s willing to cooperate with us in examining this. And I would like to suggest several things that I would like to discuss at that hearing.”

A source close to the issue said, “Senator Bennett has spent an enormous amount of time studying this problem, he’s intimately familiar with the abuses in the stock market. This speech is his opening salvo.” He went on to say that “We need an avalanche of letters and emails from every state in the Union going to every member of the U.S. Senate, urging Sen. Dodd, the chairman of the Banking Committee, to hold the hearing on Sen. Bennett’s recommendations.”

After first explaining the basic issue of naked short selling to his fellow Senators, Sen. Bennett then addressed the SEC and the creation of the DTCC, and their role in trade settlement, and how the need for a system to facilitate trade settlement led to the creation of the DTCC, or the Depository Trust and Clearing Corporation. He said that the while the DTCC is regulated by the S.E.C. that” I don’t think that last statement is true. I’m not sure that the S.E.C. has control over the DTCC. He then quoted from a Wall Street Journal article that said, “Almost all stock is now kept at the company central depository and never leaves there. Instead, a stock buyers’ brokerage account is electronically credited with the securities entitlement. This credit can, in turn, be sold to someone else.”

Then Sen. Bennett described how electronic settlement, which he called “replacing paper with electrons,” can “provide cover for naked shorting of the stock” because shareholders are given an electronic credit for the purchase instead of physical delivery of the shares. From there, he described how electronic trading, and the DTCC’s practice of keeping shares in what has become known as the “DTCC Borrow Pool,” invites manipulation of the system:

“So this happens: a short seller enters the market and says, “I want to short—I want to sell 1,000 shares of XYZ stock so at some point he has to produce 1,000 shares to cover his sale. How do you do that? You borrow the shares. And then you buy them back at some future time. All right. From whom do you borrow them? The DTCC. They have all of the shares on deposit. So you go to the DTCC and you say, I want to borrow 1,000 shares of XYZ stock. They say, fine, we have them on deposit and will lend them to you so you can use them for your ‘short’ sale. All right, everything’s fine. Except that, in this electronic age, it is possible for you to keep shuffling around the electronic impulses that represent the stock and never, ever, have to buy it back. Stop and think about that, Mr. President. That’s a pretty good business plan. You can sell as much as you want and never, ever, have to pay for it. You could go in, the stock trading at $5 a share. You go in and sell 1,000 shares. You paid $5,000 for selling 1,000 shares and you never have to buy them. Because you are constantly moving around the electronic impulses that represent those shares. You never have to cover." (read more)

Our Loving Father
“The Father has loves us so much that we are called children of God.” I John 3:1

When my oldest daughter, Jenna, was four years old, she came to me with a confession.

“Daddy, I took a crayon and drew on the wall.” (Kids amaze me with their honesty.)
I sat down and lifted her up into my lap and tried to be wise.
“Is that a good thing to do?” I asked her.
“What does Daddy do when you write on the wall?”
“You spank me.”
“What do you think Daddy should do this time?”
“Love me.”

Don’t we all want that? Don’t we all long for a father who, even though our mistakes are written all over the wall, will love us anyway?

We do have that type of a father. A father who is at his best when we are at our worst. A father whose grace is a strongest when our devotion is weakest.

Max Lucado

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