Island Idyll for Three French Hens

Wed, 2017/12/27 - 10:54am | Your editor
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Rain and sleet pelt the world outside. Even the ducks on the Thames have sought shelter and there is no sign of our local fox, called Blondie (because his or her pelt is lighter than the normal rust color of fox fur.) But at least the snow is not sticking and will not hit the 5 ft level reported in Erie, PA. The British dote on the winter misery of Americans.

Christmas, which in Britain fills two days with feasting, feeding, and drinking, has wound down to a close even in London. There is a Financial Times again. It is time to plot to escape to warmer climes and the back of the paper has an ad to tempt anyone contemplating an icey, slippery step outside the door with dread. Consider “The Ultimate Christmas Present”, called Bloody Bay, a 13-acre spread on Union Island, in the Caribbean mini-country of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

It is for sale in lots or as a whole. Offers will be accepted from 400 bitcoin and up. If you are tempted you can register at www.bloodybaybeach.com/

The number of those who could afford this Caribbean haven in its entirety has been reduced by the Saudi regime's incarceration at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel of many of its oligarchs. To get sprung, they have to give up 70% of their ill-got gains. According to the FT a former government finance official has returned home after paying in $7 bn to his jailers. This will not be available to buy Bloody Bay, unles Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who start the graftere purge, is himself tempted.

However, Bloomberg reports today that the world's wealthiest people gained $1 trillion this year as stock markets rose sharply, more than 4x as much as they gained in 2016. This is from the 23% rise in the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, which ranks the 500 richest people (including Michael Bloomberg himself.) The top slot went to Jeff Bezos fo Amazon.com, who gained $34.2 bn and is now the world's richest person with $999.6 bn—down from a round $100 bn at the end of Nov.

 

A correction from reader Steve C to my note on FAANGs yesterday, who pointed out that the N stands not for Netscape (a defunct internet outfit) but for Netflix. Apologies for my error—I go back a few years.

However the scandale over Apple's deliberately throttling down its older models to get customers to replace their iPhones which I also wrote about yesterday, seems to have hit home and AAPL stock is suffering, having lost 2.5% in US trading yesterday. Amazingly a US reader wrote to learn the details from me stuck in faraway Britain, perhaps as she was too busy cooking a feast to read the papers or view TV. To use “the word of the year” I would advise her to “wake!”

 

More for paid subscribers from Britain, Argentina, Israel, Hong Kong, Sweden, South Africa, China, Chile, Japan, Mexico, and a few other places today. We also have a new stock pick, our last for 2017.


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