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Archive for September, 2008

Obama’s Campaign Hits Florida

September 26th, 2008 3 comments

The real reason I thought Obama beat Clinton in the primaries was due to his organized and energized campaign workers.  They got out there and promoted him very well.  Of course he didn’t campaign at all in Florida, so up until now, I had only seen it on the news.

Today it’s official that his campaign is up and running around here.  Just today:

  • A Obama campaign worker came to my door to help me register to vote if I wasn’t already.
  • I received a campaign mailer touting how Obama wants to get US off Middle Eastern oil in 10 years (though it didn’t say how he would do it, just that he had a “plan”).
  • I received a poster size mailer that showed how McCain was taking money from lobbyists and listed the people in McCain’s campaign that were lobbyists at one time.
Of all 3 I would probably have to say that the first is probably the most effective.  If I wasn’t already registered to vote, I could have filled the paper work out that very instant.  And to top it off, the Obama campaign would have the name and address of someone who most likely hadn’t decided who they were going to vote for.
I haven’t heard anything from the McCain campaign, and I’m wondering if it has to do with the amount of money each campaign has raised.

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Stock Option Trading?!?

September 19th, 2008 2 comments

I’m probably going to pay some more “dues” for enrollment in the School of Stock Market for this, but I guess it’s part of the learning experience.

Today I sold my first covered call.  So what the hell does that mean?

I currently own 100 shares of General Motors.  Today it is priced at around $12.50, so my total investment is $1,250 (ps, I originally bought it for $10 per share).  And today I sold a call option for October 18th with a strike price of $15.00, and after commissions I made about $50.

A call option gives the owner the “right” to buy a certain stock for the strike price on the expiration date.  So in my case, I gave someone else the right to buy my shares of GM on October 18th for $15 each.  By doing so, I sold my right to any profits if the stock goes above $15 to whoever bought this option from me.

If, at the end of the month, the stock is below $15, the option expires and I get to keep the $50 (a 4% return on my investment in 1 month).

In essence, I’m making a bet that the stock won’t appreciate by 20%.  The only way I can lose money in this is if GM goes below $12.50 per share (which is very likely).  But considering I plan on holding this stock for at least the next year or so, I at least get a little cash from the options sale in the meantime.

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More Toys!

September 18th, 2008 1 comment

It may seem a little strange for a website named FrugalJim to write articles on expensive toys…  but you’ve got to admit, this is pretty cool:

iconair

It costs $130,000 and requires only 20 hours of training.  On top of that, the wings fold in, so you can tow it with your truck, it can use automotive gas (cheaper than air fuel), and it can land on water (it floats), and it gets 25 MPG with a top speed of 140 MPH.  Sweet!

I will be buying a lotto ticket this weekend…

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I’m a Technology Geek

September 16th, 2008 2 comments

It’s official.  I’m going to have to convince the Wife that her next car should be a Chevy Volt.  Plug it into the wall at night (6 hours to fully charge), and drive 40 miles on pure electricity.  Couple this with some solar panels on the roof, and I’m living in a geek fantasy…  Even without the solar panels though, and using today’s gas prices and electricity prices, this car gets equivalent to around 175 miles per gallon (using $.02/mile and $3.50 for gas prices).

On Saturday, we actually had a hard time finding gas (3 stations in our area) due to people freaking out about gas shortages.  The freaking out about possible gas shortages were what actually caused the gas shortage…  Anyways, it just seems awesome to potentially not have to go to the gas station.

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NY Times Opinion Piece… Cry or Laugh?

September 11th, 2008 1 comment

I haven’t seen a piece written like this before… ever.

While it was scary to read, at the same time it was very cleverly written.  It could almost pass for a Bible verse, which makes it seem even more scary.

I seem to agree with almost everything in the article, but I’m unsure what role I personally played in bringing on the doom and gloom.   I do drive a gas guzzler, and I did buy a house recently that probably bumped up the demand and prices around our area.  Does this mean that I’m to blame as much as the government?  And what else could I do to make things better?

We’ll just have to wait and see how the story ends.

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