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GFD Blog

The Death of the Zimbabwe Dollar

The government of Zimbabwe announced this week that they were finally demonetizing the Zimbabwe Dollar. Although the United States Dollar replaced the Zimbabwe Dollar in every day transactions back in 2009, banks still carried accounts that were denominated in Zimbabwe Dollars. Beginning on June 15, 2015, for only 35 quadrillion (35,000,000,000,000,000) Zimbabwe Dollars bank customers will receive one free portrait of George Washington. This opportunity expires in September.

Believe it or not, Zimbabwe will not get in the Guinness Book of World Records for the most insane currency co ...

ZZZZ Worst and The Frankenstein of Fraudsters

I have written about numerous scammers who used the stock market to defraud investors of their money, but one of the towering figures of this repulsive group of is Barry Minkow. I refer to him as the Frankenstein of Fraudsters because he is a con man who refuses to die, finding new kinds of fraud when he could no longer pursue his previous criminal activities. If there was a way to cheat people of their money, Barry Minkow found it. Minkow’s frauds cost investors hundreds of millions of dollars. Criminal charges against him include racketeering, securities fraud, embezzlement, money launderin ...

Mickey Mantle Strikes Out, Then Hits a Homer

A previous blog discussed Wilt Chamberlain’s unsuccessful attempt at following up on his successful basketball career with a successful IPO. Wilt Chamberlain wasn’t the only sports star to go into the restaurant business. Few people realize it, but Mickey Mantle set up restaurants twice, once in Texas in the 1950s when he struck out, and a second time in the 1980s in New York City when he hit a home run.

Mickey Mantle played for the New York Yankees between 1951 and 1968 and is one of the few baseball players to hit over 500 home runs during his career, and believe it or not, without ...

Are U.S. and World Unemployment Sending a Signal to the Fed?

The Unemployment Rate in the United States is of primary concern not only because it is an important measure of labor markets, but because it influences the Fed’s decision on whether to raise the Fed Funds Target, which has remained near zero since the beginning of the Great Recession. Although the Fed is hesitant to raise interest rates because of the impact it has on the economy, the graph below shows that 2014 provided a crucial development for the U.S. economy from a technical point of view. Between 2009 and 2013, the United States Unemployment Rate (U-3) was above the average Unemploymen ...

GFD CAPE Ratio Additions

Global Financial Data has added 250 CAPE Ratios to its database. The GFD CAPE Ratios are drawn from over 40 countries and include global indices such as World excluding USA index. The GFD CAPE ratios are updated on a monthly basis.

The CAPE Ratio is the cyclically-adjusted price-to-earnings ratio, also known as the Shiller P/E, which was developed by the Nobel Prize winning economist Robert Shiller. GFD’s CAPE Ratios are a moving average calculated as the inflation-adjusted price of the stock index divided by an average of ten years of inflation-adjusted earnings for the index. Graha ...

Whatever Happened to my AT&T Shares?

One of the great mysteries of life was created when AT&T split up into Ma Bell and the Baby Bells. This created a chain reaction of share distributions, splits, take-overs and acquisitions which has created stress and confusion to anyone selling shares in AT&T purchased before January 1, 1983. At least when Standard Oil broke up into 30 companies back in 1912, they at least had the common sense to do this before the IRS could make life miserable for stockholders.

Luckily, the number of people who owned the original AT&T shares in 1983 and haven’t sold their shares yet, forcing them t ...

3000 New Data Sets Added to the Global Financial Database

GFD has added 3000 new data sets to the GFDatabase which calculate the Annual Percentage Change. These files focus on economic data for which users are more concerned about the rate of change than the actual number, such as the Consumer Price Index and Real GDP.

Although GFD provides the annual percentage change as a choice when downloading the raw data, there are several advantages to providing the annual percentage change as a separate file. First, users can download the rate of change directly. Second, users can use the Annual Percentage Change files in our new platform, Finaeon, ...

Global Financial Data adds Data for over 600 Insurance Companies

Global Financial Data has added price data on over 600 U.S. insurance companies covering the years 1928 and 1972. The data are over-the-counter quotes and provide the Bid, Ask and Average of the Bid and the Ask for each company. The data are end-of-the-month bids and asks and provide data on hundreds of insurance companies not available from any other vendor.

Most insurance companies traded over-the-counter prior to the formation of the NASDAQ in 1972. Many insurance companies were small and operated in only a few states, or offered limited insurance coverage, so they were unable to ...

Global Financial Data Adds Almost 300 New Equity and Commodity Indices

Global Financial Data has added almost 300 new stock and commodity indices for users of the Global Financial Database. The new indices expand GFD’s coverage of equities into new areas.

GFD has added a number of indices that are calculated by Research Affiliates. These indices use a weighting that differs from traditional indices. Most equity indices are either equally weighted (as with the Dow Jones Industrial Average) in which the index assumes one share of each component is owned, or is capitalization-weighted, in which the larger the capitalization of the company, the larger the w ...

The World’s First Bear Market

The United States stock market has been in bull-market mode for six years now, and some fear the stock market may be running out of steam. By our count, there have been 25 bear markets in the United States since 1792 and 28 bear markets in the United Kingdom since 1692. Are we about to add to that list?

This raises the question, when did that ugly bear first raise its head? By our analysis, the first fateful year was 1692 when a four-year bear market began in England. If we take the price of East India Company stock from March 1692 until July 1694, and the price of Bank of England s ...

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