Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Financial Sarcasm Roundup for 01/26/16

The Beatles once sang about having "A Hard Day's Night." That's unintentionally sarcastic. If your hard day continues into the night, you may have a lifestyle problem.

JP Morgan Chase wants to turn your smartphone into an ATM. People need to think hard about this very risky approach. Tapping a smartphone to an ATM means anyone who holds the phone can get your cash. It will be a boon for pickpockets and armed robbers. JP Morgan's IT people need to code some hard-core biometric identification tools into their ATM app before it goes live. I think a saliva sample would work nicely. Just lick your smartphone's screen before you tap for that cash.

Apple's iPhone sales are slipping. Here's the latest evidence that a long-term bet on endless China growth is the corporate strategy of five years ago, not today. The inevitable US sales peak will come when Apple's too-stupid early adopter segment finally realizes that they can do without spending $800 every eighteen months for an incremental improvement in camera resolution. Oh yeah, the Apple Watch looks like the company's first dud since the Newton scratchpad. I knew the Watch was useless as soon as I saw it. Watches cannot be scaled down versions of smartphones due to their display size but nobody at Apple was thinking about biometrics. Tech marketers fall for their own hype at the tops of market bubbles.

Oil producers that cut costs can survive earnings season. The ones who drilled $60/boe wells expecting to make $100/boe forever are toast. I was really getting sick of hearing from unproven junior E+P companies tout their shale wells. They can have their remaining employees take turns sucking the oil out through big straws if they can't afford fracking fluids anymore.

I usually have a great day's night, unlike the Beatles. I studiously avoid the Notre Dame Club of San Francisco because those people used to ruin both my days and nights when I met them. No one can ever ruin me now.