Curated Stuff: Week of May 15

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Hi folks,

Hope you are having a great weekend. Maybe you are having a house warming party, playing tennis, or working on your wedding side hustle. Whatever it is, I wish you an inspiring and energy filled week ahead. The long weekend up in Portland was great, lots to do and eat in the city. I also ended up in Napa for my department’s overnight offsite. Now it’s back to the grind, but at least the grind will make us sharper!

Finance

  • On Wednesday, markets took it’s biggest dive since September 2016, based on some political instability (Investigative committee formed to review Trump’s relationships w/ Russia, fallout from firing FBI director Comey, etc). With all of these issues, it will be a bit harder for the President to work on many of his other economy boosting agenda items, such as Tax reforms.
  • Most analysts said to buy the dip after this week, but we saw the market come back immediately. The indicator I usually look at in the evening is the Dow Jones Futures +143 as of Sunday, which may signal a strong Monday. EDIT – as of Sunday evening, it’s +27
  • I bought a few more shares of a large cap fund in my 401k.
  • I started following the VIX (Volatility index) and GDX (Gold Miners)
  • I sold off the rest of my company stock. Since it’s finally out of the red, I thought it would be to diversify paycheck and stock holdings.
  • National reports showed a decline in both housing starts and building permits which are major indicators for future housing supply. This is a national average, so take this with a grain of salt based on your location.
  • Cryptocurrency
    • Big week for Bitcoin, hitting all time HIGHs. I cannot believe it keeps going up and up (Current price is $2065 per Bitcoin!
    • Consensus 2017 starts tomorrow (watch the live stream here), and Ripple XRP will either go straight up or straight down. Keeping my fingers crossed. XRP has been averaging $0.34 this week, while Ethereum is slowly creeping back, trying to regain it’s number 2 spot from XRP. EDIT – Hours after I wrote this, Ethereum just blew past XRP announcing partnerships with big business.
    • EDIT 5/22/17 – Ethereum (Ether) is still going strong, while Ripple (XRP) is losing some steam. Where is the good news, Ripple?!?!?!

Podcasts I found interesting:

Fun Links

Book of the week:

The life-changing magic of not giving a F
I saw this book at the Powell City of Books library in Portland, so I checked out the audio book at the library (You can also download free audio books via your public library. I’m using the hard to navigate app called Overdrive). I rate this book a D-. The hedonistic values in this book make me cringe, although I understand what the author is trying to communicate. The summary is, don’t care about what others think of you, and you will live your best life. Start by taking inventory of what you think you care about in categories (things, work, friends, family), just like the Marie Kondo method.  Then stop caring about them. I probably do care too much about what others think, but at the same time, the values in this book are based on a selfish methodology of living. Not exactly the Christian way of living.

Overconsumption

I’ve been consuming too much information, in other words, Garbage in, garbage out. So if it isn’t fruitful, I’m cutting it for now. So I eliminated two podcasts from my queue: 

  • The School of Greatness – Although I like his positivity once in a while, Lewis Howes was starting to get on my nerves with his new age yoga meditation type mumbo jumbo. The straw that broke the camel’s back was that he recently had Mr. Nooma video Rob Bell on his podcast. Oh man, his views on how culture is greater than the truth really bugs me.
  • The Art of Charm – Former pick up artist material turned life/ business coaching. Some of it is useful, but the material has become a bit stale and repetitive, and overall, not spiritually positive.

Final Thoughts

  • Seriously, check out the cryptocurrency world. It’s really volatile, but many believe it is the future of payments, and maybe the beginning of SKYNET?!
  • My grandma turns 106 years old today. Isn’t that something? I try to visit her once a week, but I wish I could spend more quality time. In contrast, my nephew turns 6 tomorrow.
  • This week I’m going to focus my free time on reading about real estate and preparing for ASCO, the largest conference on Cancer therapies. What are you going to do this week?

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