We hope you didn't miss us terribly yesterday. But today's candid, no-holds-barred episode featuring Dan Ferris and multiple "guests" is sure to make up for the delay.
You see, we're taking you to Boston in this week's episode...
Last month, your Stansberry Investor Hour host and Extreme Value editor Dan presented at the 20th annual Stansberry Conference alongside dozens of exceptional speakers. And today, he's giving his listeners a special peek into one of the panels he participated in with fellow editors.
This wasn't your typical roundtable discussion... Instead, moderator and Stansberry Research's Director of Research Matt Weinschenk had gathered some of Stansberry's "more outspoken and colorful personalities" for a lively game of "Bull, Bear, or B.S."
Dan is joined by his colleagues: the Retirement franchise's Dr. David "Doc" Eifrig, Crypto Capital and Crypto Cashflow's Eric Wade, and Matt McCall of The McCall Report and Matt McCall's MegaTrend Investor. The four must each choose whether they're bullish or bearish – or calling B.S. – on some of the most controversial topics in finance today.
The game starts off with a bang as the four discuss legendary investor Stanley Druckenmiller's belief that inflation can only be tamed by raising the federal-funds rate above the rate of inflation. The only bull among the group, Eric, fiercely states, "Whatever it's going to take, we're going to burn our way out of this."
They also share their viewpoints on the current stock market valuation in terms of the CAPE Shiller P/E (that's cyclically adjusted price-to-earnings) ratio. When asked about their thoughts on venture-capital investing, Matt McCall and Dan find themselves in agreement – a reality that's not as rare as many think. In fact, Dan went on to say...
You'll be surprised to learn that Matt [McCall] and I agree on a whole bunch of stuff. And this is one of them. It makes me bearish... like breathing makes me bearish.
Furthermore, you'll learn which recent Big Tech headline-maker has Doc wryly saying, "Yeah, for me, a letter to the Fed is like a letter to Santa Claus."
You'll also hear each editor's take on the future of the housing market, consumer spending, energy stocks, bitcoin, and the metaverse – including Dan's hot take on well-known companies like gaming pioneer Atari grabbing up virtual real estate...
Can you imagine how much weed they're smoking at Atari to be spending money on virtual real estate? I mean, they're computer programmers, and they're buying virtual real estate.
It's like God buying the planet or something. He can make a new one. It's the dumbest thing I've ever seen in my life.
You can also click here to watch a video of the panel on YouTube.
Dr. David Eifrig
Editor, Stansberry Research
Dr. David "Doc" Eifrig is the editor of Retirement Millionaire, Health & Wealth Bulletin, Retirement Trader, Income Intelligence, and Advanced Options. And he has one of the most remarkable resumes of anyone we know in this industry...
Editor, Stansberry Research
Eric Wade is the editor of Crypto Capital, an investment advisory where he uses his unique strategy to find the best opportunities in the cryptocurrency space. He's also the editor of Crypto Cashflow - an advisory that focuses on high-yield, low-volatility crypto opportunities - and the tech-focused Stansberry Innovations Report.
Senior Analyst, Stansberry Research
Matt McCall is the lead analyst for The McCall Report, Matt McCall's MegaTrend Investor, and Matt McCall's Daily Insight.
Director of Research, Stansberry Research
Matt Weinschenk is the director of research for Stansberry Research. He also serves as the senior analyst for Dr. David Eifrig's Retirement franchise of publications and sits on the investment committee for Stansberry Portfolio Solutions.
Dan Ferris: Hello, and welcome to the Stansberry Investor Hour. I'm your host, Dan Ferris. I'm also the editor of Extreme Value, published by Stansberry Research.
Corey McLaughlin: And I'm Corey McLaughlin. I'm editor of the Stansberry Digest. This week, we have a special panel discussion from our recent conference in Boston: "Bull, Bear, or B.S.?"
Dan Ferris: And for our opening round, I'll ask Corey to please help me with a serious problem. And remember, you can e-mail us at [email protected] and tell us what's on your mind.
Corey McLaughlin: That and more right now on the Stansberry Investor Hour.
Dan Ferris: All right. So, what's the serious problem that I need your help with?
Corey McLaughlin: I'm kind of scared. What is this?
Dan Ferris: Yeah. Yeah. So, the serious problem is that every time there is a Fed meeting and a Federal Open Market Committee Meeting, and then Jerome Powell makes this statement and he has a press conference, I become obsessed... like, I can't think about anything else for days afterward. And it just practically pollutes everything that I think, and everything that I publish with Stansberry Research, to the point where I submitted a recent issue of the Stansberry Digest. And the editor, who is a wonderful guy and does a great job, he very politely said, "I'm having a little trouble deciding why the reader cares about this today," or something like that. So, it's gotten out of hand.
Corey McLaughlin: Yeah. I think we're all a bit guilty of that. Me too. I wrote, you know, on the last Fed meeting, I was watching and listening to every word, much like it seems Wall Street traders were. If you saw the gyrations, up 1%, down 1%, up 2%, down 2%, literally as Jerome Powell was speaking...
Dan Ferris: Yeah.
Corey McLaughlin: You know, you take it for what it is. I think we all probably have a little bit of Fed apathy at this point, or distress. I don't know what the right word is, but you're not alone is my point, yes.
Dan Ferris: Yeah. Being part of the herd makes me feel so much better. Succumbing to the narrative that the entire rest of the world is succumbing to makes me feel so much better. But I do have to say, we interviewed Marko Papic recently and he just came out with it and he's a pretty objective guy. I consider him a pretty objective guy and he just came out with it and said, "Look, the most important thing in the world right now is the Federal Reserve, and that's all there is to it." I'm like, "Oh, OK... maybe not so bad."
Corey McLaughlin: Yeah. I mean this has happened at every kind of Fed meeting. This one in particular though was a bit different because the reason that I guess stocks were up initially was – the way this works is the Fed releases this statement at two in the afternoon of its meeting and that said one thing. And then half-hour later, Powell starts talking and he started saying things that were not in that statement at all.
Dan Ferris: No.
Corey McLaughlin: And it was like two different messages.
Dan Ferris: Yeah.
Corey McLaughlin: So, I keep thinking there's – I don't know how the process works of releasing this information, but there has to be some sort of committee that has to approve that written statement and probably takes into account all of the other opinions to kind of put that together and then he goes out and says what he wants.
Dan Ferris: Right. The written statement is a whole thing by itself.
Corey McLaughlin: Right, right.
Dan Ferris: It's just –
Corey McLaughlin: Yeah. The people parse each word and, yeah, it's crazy.
Dan Ferris: Yeah. So, with the written statement though, it's nearly the same. Like there are people who go on to Twitter after every meeting and they publish basically a marked-up version of the current statement which is almost identical to the previous one.
Corey McLaughlin: Right.
Dan Ferris: So, they're basically looking at the little ways that it's different from the previous one.
Corey McLaughlin: Right. And the two things that were different this time were that they are considering the lag effects on the economy, basically. And people took that to mean, "Oh, they're going to slow down because the economy is going to get worse." Then Powell kind of discredited that one later.
And the other part was that – which not as many people picked up on and which is what the focus of Powell's kind of speech was – we're going to raise rates to a level that – I think it was "sufficiently restrictive" or something like that.
Dan Ferris: Oh, yeah. The word "restrictive" is everywhere.
Corey McLaughlin: And they don't know what that level is, so –
Dan Ferris: Yeah.
Corey McLaughlin: – and it could go higher and so that's what kind of freaked people out again and – anyway, now I'm talking about the Fed, which we don't want to be doing, so –
Dan Ferris: No, but we must talk about it, and he keeps talking about restrictive and a couple of times he mentioned the expectation that rates would go higher than we thought at the last meeting, you know? Restrictive means higher than we thought, and the market didn't like that. And then, of course, he gets into the Q&A after the statement, and that's when he like lowers the boom on everyone, right? That's when he's like – I forget the exact sentences... I should have written it down. But the exact sentence was something like it is premature to talk or think about pausing, like pausing just means keeping rates where they are. Pivoting means cutting again. So, they're not even thinking or talking about pausing, let alone pivoting. That must have been the point where the market said, "Oh, sell everything," you know?
Corey McLaughlin: No. You're right. That was at the exact point where I was paying attention, like I said, on that line the S&P 500 dropped 2% almost immediately, which shows you the sensitivity and how closely all of the algorithmic stuff is trading based on these speeches. And then you look at what they say doesn't even turn out to be correct... like never. Last year, they were projecting their rates to be much lower right now and inflation to be much lower, so you take it for what it is, and it does move the market. I think the overall point is they're going to keep raising rates, probably. From everything I can piece together, they're going close to 5% and then seeing what happens.
Dan Ferris: Right. So, I did list a bunch of statements in my recent Stansberry Digest, including that other one. It's very premature to be thinking or talking about pausing. And then there were other things that he's like, "The historical record cautions strongly against prematurely loosening policy. We will stay the course until the job is done," OK? And then he says, "I don't have any sense that we've over-tightened or moved too fast. We may ultimately move to higher levels than we thought at the time of the September meeting." Here's another one: "We still think there's a need for ongoing rate increases, and we have some ground left to cover here and cover it we will." "The beatings will continue until morale improves," right?
Corey McLaughlin: Yeah, exactly. Yeah. People don't want to believe it, but they haven't wanted to believe it all year and rates just keep going up –
Dan Ferris: Yeah.
Corey McLaughlin: – and inflation is what it is. He also said, at some point, this will end, but it hasn't yet... basically, that their projections are under whatever inflation ends up actually being.
Dan Ferris: Right.
Corey McLaughlin: So, yeah, there's no shortage of things to talk about with the Fed, unfortunately.
Dan Ferris: Unfortunately. That's right. Unfortunately, we are all focused on these bureaucrat bankers who are experimenting because let's face it, they don't know what they're doing. They're experimenting with a $24-or-whatever trillion economy. Like, wow, do we really trust these people, the people who helped exacerbate the financial crisis and then claimed to save us from it, right? The arsonist who puts on a fireman's cap after the fire is raging? It's just like "wow, OK," you know? Then they give a Nobel prize to the chief arsonist Ben Bernanke. I'm like "somebody doesn't seem to understand the sequence of events here."
Corey McLaughlin: Yeah. I am with you. Yeah. It's frustrating. I've said this before. It's frustrating to me how often I find myself writing about the Federal Reserve and I wish it wasn't that way, but the more –
Dan Ferris: Yeah. Me too.
Corey McLaughlin: – the more I stick around and follow what's going on, it's that other people care what they say too, which is – we can think about it whatever we want, but other people are hanging on their every word too. So unfortunately, that's what it is.
Dan Ferris: Yeah. In particular, like that one comment about the historical record, he said, "The historical record cautions strongly against premature loosening policy. We will stay the course until the job is done." I think we all know he's talking about Arthur Burns, right? Arthur Burns preceded Paul Volcker as Fed Chair, and Arthur Burns will go down in history as the guy who stopped too soon, right? The guy who stopped raising rates too soon, and then inflation really took off for the rest of the 1970s. You know, he figured well... "I just tanked the market, like '73, '74. I've destroyed the market, so it's over, right?" Yeah. Nope. It wasn't.
Corey McLaughlin: Yeah. I think to bring up that point, it makes me think of these guys are actually human, too, the Fed board. We don't like to think of them that way because they don't really kind of present themselves that way, but Jerome Powell is human. I highly doubt that he wants to go down as "the Arthur Burns" and would rather be thought of as "the Paul Volcker," even though he wasn't necessarily a hero either. I think they think about their reputations, I suppose.
Dan Ferris: I agree. Absolutely. I said this in Boston. I might have – I think I said it on the podcast once before, but he is the high-school quarterback, the star quarterback walking down the hall, looking at the picture on the wall of the hero from 40 years ago, and he said, "I'm going to be like Paul. I'm going to win the game. I'm going to save the day just like Paul." I think that's an adequate paradigm because high school is a heavily – peer pressure is the big one in high school, right? That's the thing that influences every kid in school, and it's the same thing in Washington, D.C., which is where the Fed is. "I'm going to live up to what all of these kids around me want, and you'd better beat down inflation to do that."
Corey McLaughlin: You've got me thinking about high school now and the hallways –
Dan Ferris: Yeah.
Corey McLaughlin: – and the after-school activities.
Dan Ferris: Yeah.
Corey McLaughlin: This is very fun.
Dan Ferris: Yeah. That's right. After-school activities are the same, too, because these people are smoking some serious, serious ganja. They want me to believe that they're the smartest kids in school, you know, 400 PhD economists. OK, sure, maybe you are. You look like a bunch of suck-ups to me, just the same way they did in high school. And I also know that you're getting high after school, you know? Just to relieve the pressure or whatever. So yeah, maybe it's a better paradigm.
Corey McLaughlin: Would you say getting high on your own money supply?
Dan Ferris: Yeah, there you go... high on your own supply. That's right, yep. Well, I think we've just covered this just about as well as – I think we've got the Fed all sussed out. Two guys sitting at home behind microphones know a lot more about it than the PhD economists and the guy appointment as chairman of the Fed, right?
Corey McLaughlin: Of course, yeah.
Dan Ferris: Sure.
Corey McLaughlin: I think the main point is this story is not going away yet – as far as the raising rates story and as much as some people might be speculating over it.
Dan Ferris: Yeah.
Corey McLaughlin: Ahead of every Fed meeting, and you get the complete opposite.
Dan Ferris: Yeah. It intensifies, like, every time they don't sort of telegraph a pause or a pivot, every time he says, "Don't even think about it, don't even talk about it," it intensifies it because "oh, well, what's going to happen at the next meeting?" That will be the pause of the pivot. "Oh, then, not that meeting OK. Then, it's like you say in your recent Digest, we're hanging on every word. We're on the edge of our seat. You know, we're getting closer and closer to the edge, and I guess the rally on that day will be spectacular, right? That will be like S&P 500 up 6% or something.
Corey McLaughlin: Yeah, probably.
Dan Ferris: All right. Well, gosh, after that I really don't know that we have much else – if there's anything else going on in the world, who cares, right? I mean this –
Corey McLaughlin: No. I think this long discussion of the Fed is a nice intro to a "Bull, Bear, or B.S." panel, because we've got the B.S. covered from the central bank's point of view already.
Dan Ferris: It is. I really enjoyed sitting on this panel with Eric Wade, Doc Eifrig, and Matt McCall. It was run by Matt Weinschenk, our director of research, and he asked us a lot of good questions, a lot of good, current, you know, concerns of investors, and we just right down the row and we all said, "Bull, bear, B.S., what do you think?" I really enjoyed it, of course, I like hearing myself talk, so –
Corey McLaughlin: Well, I was actually sitting there. I was actually sitting there listening to it as well and I walked in the conference room there with Jeff Havenstein, one of our colleagues, who works on Doc's team, and he was like, "Whoa, the room is pretty full." So, I'm glad some more people are about to get to hear it.
Dan Ferris: Yeah. It was sold out. The crowd was 500 people, sold-out crowd, so there are obviously many, many thousands more who might like to hear it and they'll get a chance to do that right now, so let's do it right now.
This is the Stansberry 2022 Conference from the Encore Hotel in Boston Harbor, the "Bull, Bear, or B.S.?" panel. Enjoy.
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Matt Weinschenk: We're going to get started with what is my favorite time of the conference. And that's sort of our alliance section, our editor's panels, where we bring our best and brightest to talk directly to you about what they're looking at and what they're thinking. It's been, you know, it's been quite a year. There's not a general consensus about the market these days. There's definitely not a general consensus amongst our editors. And I just wanted to get them, again, I love having conversations with these guys. I wanted to sit them down, go through the hot topics of the day, and see what they think.
So we brought together our, what we call our macro-level services, our editors, some of our more outspoken and colorful personalities to go through some topics. And we'll see what you think. I promise I'm not going to try to agitate them or get Matt talking about gold or anything like that. But we'll see we can do, there is a clicker somewhere, I should have grabbed that. So this is called "Bull, Bear, or B.S.?" And I am going to deliver a fact or an opinion, not necessarily one of mine, but to these gentlemen, and we're going to let them decide if that makes them bullish or bearish, or they can call B.S. on that particular fact. I don't think I have to introduce anybody. But of course, we've got Matt McCall of The McCall Report. Dan Ferris of Extreme Value, and potentially some other things. I don't want to tip that at this point. Doc Eifrig, Retirement Millionaire, and many other services. And Eric Wade, of Crypto Capital, Crypto Cashflow, Stansberry Innovations Report. You know all that. OK.
Doc Eifrig: Can I add something?
Matt Weinschenk: Yes.
Doc Eifrig: Thank you. So we have not rehearsed this at all. So the idea was truly "Matt's going to throw some stuff at us." And he sort of told us what he might throw at us. I mean he sort of told us what he might throw at us, but we don't know if that's going to be true either. So this is, we've not talked. We've not discussed this. This is as candid and open as it gets. So here we go.
Matt McCall: So you're our beta tester.
Dan Ferris: And we want your help as well, too, if you have thoughts or questions. So yeah.
Matt Weinschenk: And we've got about 10 topics here. And my only concern is that we're going to start with the first one, and we'll never move on from that. So we'll see how –
Dan Ferris: We haven't rehearsed, but you know [crosstalk].
Eric Wade: It's your paper. You wrote it.
Doc Eifrig: So wait a second. Are you in charge?
Matt Weinschenk: I don't think anyone is in charge of this [crosstalk].
Doc Eifrig: OK, because you could corral it, and move it along No. 2. OK.
Matt Weinschenk: But I don't want to – if it's going well, we can talk about the first topic all day. That's fine with me. OK. So No. 1, here. Legendary investor Stanley Druckenmiller has pointed out that inflation has never been tamed without raising the federal-funds rate above the rate of inflation. If that relationship holds, the Federal Reserve will have to hike rates to 8% from the current level of 3.25%. When you hear that, does that make you bullish, bearish, or is that B.S.?
Matt McCall: That's complete B.S.? All right. Well, first of all, the CPI, I believe [crosstalk]. The CPI – we have commodity prices rolling over. But the key is the canary in the coal mine –
Doc Eifrig: Can I say that's bullshit at this point? Sorry. [Laughter]
Matt McCall: – is shelter makes up one-third of CPI. Housing and rents both are starting to roll over and they're going to come down very, very fast. When that happens, it's going to go directly into the CPI. And you realize if the CPI is just flat, month over month, going forward starting in October, by April, the CPI is done at 2.6%. By May, 1.5%. Even if it goes up 0.3% month over month, which is below the average last three months of that happening, by June, we're down to 2.9%... which the best in all of us would be so happy about. So to me within the next six-eight months or so, worst case scenario, inflation is almost back to where the Fed thinks it's going to be. So it's complete B.S.
Matt Weinschenk: All right. Anyone else?
Dan Ferris: That's a real nice story, Matt.
Doc Eifrig: Can I still say bullshit?
Dan Ferris: You won't catch me trying to predict it. But, you know, you can't predict what the supply is going to be. Like all we know right now is that the Federal Reserve is beating the daylights out of the demand side, and then they're not showing any signs of letting up. There's one little, one little green chute, Lael Brainard is kind of tossing out she. Like she's the dove in the Fed, just tossing out a comment that suggests maybe she might like to see him slow down a little bit. But I don't think he is I think he's, you know, I think they're using the sumo models, right, something out of my ass. And they're committed. I think they're committed to like this we have to beat the CPI down to 2%. And that makes me feel really bearish.
Matt Weinschenk: Any thoughts?
Eric Wade: I do. It makes me bullish. Anybody want to know why? What's the know CPI? I mean, the one before the nose job? Before the tummy tuck? By the time we're done with this, the CPI is going to be, well, we found this amazing asset that never changes. And we're going to call that inflation. And guess what? It's 2% now. I don't trust any of those numbers anymore. This time is different. Maybe family is right. I don't know. They're going to cook the books. They're going to change something. We're going to come out of this, did we have a recession two back-to-back quarters? Well, who do you ask? Right? That's where we're heading. So yeah, it's bullish. Or whatever it's going to take, we're going to we're going to burn our way out of this.
Doc Eifrig: Could you repeat the question?
Matt Weinschenk: Uh – [laughter]. If the historical relationship holds, the federal-funds rate will have to go to 8% to combat inflation.
Doc Eifrig: Yeah, I don't think the Fed knows anything, anyone who looks at the numbers. They don't get stuff right. They certainly get credit for things that they shouldn't get credit for. It scares me a little bit because this guy, not that you don't travel, and not that you're not a learned man, but he's out and about there. And I have a little inkling you might be right. [Crosstalk] A little inkling. A little inking. I don't even know if that's know if that's the appropriate use of that word. Karli, is that the appropriate use of "inkling"?
Anyway. And I was telling folks the other day that in my vineyard, we had to pick the Cabernet over two days because of labor laws in California now. You can't work more than eight hours. You can't work more than 44 in a week. And so migrant workers are normally coming into the United States to help out and do this hard-ass labored work. But they sleep in their cars and they make thousands of dollars a day are no longer doing that. They're making a couple of hundred a day... waiting a day, working eight hours. You know, they would work 20 hours in a day, sleep in their car at the next vineyard.
So all of that, I mean, for us, it raised the cost not of the actual picking, because that's the same amount, but the cost to transport the trucks, the truck drivers, all those are costs that I'll have to pass on. And I hear from people that the labor side of that is not solved, but it might be if wealth is decreased. So I think bullshit on it, targeting 8%. It could go to 15%. And I've lived in those times. But it could also, you know, potentially, demand dry up, and people – I don't know. I'm more on the –
Matt McCall: I find it amazing, you could take any topic of the CPI, and turn into a pitch for your wine. [Laughter]
Eric Wade: I heard that part. And I was wondering, wait, is that a bull, bear, or B.S.? Yes or no?
Doc Eifrig: I'm sorry. A pitch for my what?
Eric Wade: His delicious Dry Creek wine. It was great.
Matt Weinschenk: OK. I'm going to move on to valuation. We're still kind of on the macro chapter here. The CAPE Shiller ratio, which measures the price to earnings over 10 years of earnings, is currently at 27.5. Now that's down from the recent peak of 37. But it's well above its average of 17 times. When you look at valuation, are you bullish, bearish, or this B.S.?
Doc Eifrig: I'll let Dan go first on his one.
Dan Ferris: So I heard somebody say that the problem with this is that S&P earnings are inflated, so the ratio isn't as high as it looks. But it doesn't matter because that effect averages – it doesn't multiply. It's diluted across all of those companies, right? Because they all do the same things with their accounting. So I remember Arnold Vandenberg telling me many years ago when I visited him in Austin, Texas, and he said, "Well, sure, but just lop 10% or 15% off all the earnings, and then the multiple becomes high, still, historically, relative to where it was." So it doesn't matter there. I'm not worried about that. The absolute number, in other words, doesn't mean anything.
And at this moment, I don't care about those numbers anymore actually. Sure, the CAPE is now finally down around the level of like 1929, or you know. So you could, you know, I can sit here and say, "Oh, it's so high. It's so high." But I don't care about that. What I care about is something I talked with Austin Root about a few years ago, like when I was bullish, yes, it happens...
... I was bullish in mid to late, mid to late 2020. And he was asking me about these numbers. And I said, "I don't really care. I just want to be on the other side of what happened in March. I just want to be on the other side of the big negative event." And I don't care about the number anymore. And then, I started to care about the number again because it got higher than it's ever been in history. And now, I don't really care about the number anymore. I'm just on the other side of, you know, the biggest financial drinking party in all recorded history, and I'm waiting for the hangover to hit.
Eric Wade: But if you drink good wine, you don't get a hangover. Right?
Matt McCall: The question was – so what did you say, it's bullish? I think this is complete nonsense. I remember being on Fox News 15 years ago, and everybody would come on, "The CAPE ratio". What has the market done in the last 15 years? It's gone up. The CAPE ratio has been high. Goldman Sachs, there's a study going back to 1881, taking a CAPE ratio. The significance of it that is it goes back to the mean, that it sends a market back to the mean, 26%. You're a numbers guy. For something to be actually significant, it needs to be about 95%. Twenty-six percent of the time, it actually really works going back over a century. It's a complete bullshit number. And even Shiller, himself, comes out and goes against his number sometimes. I mean, this is just, it's a headline-grabbing ratio that the bears love to use. And, you know, it just hasn't worked.
Dan Ferris: It hasn't worked except at the top of every financial mega-bubble in history, it was higher than it's ever been. And 90% of the time, you don't care about it, though. You only care about it when it's at the highest it's ever been in history.
Matt McCall: But you don't know that till it's over.
Dan Ferris: I said you don't know till it's over, like 50 times in the past few days. Yeah.
Doc Eifrig: So I remember when I first learned about the CAPE, and I thought it was bullshit.
Matt Weinschenk: We're using the term B.S., Doc.
Doc Eifrig: Oh, sorry.
Matt Weinschenk: No, I'm just joking. I'm just joking.
Doc Eifrig: I remember the first time I learned about the CAPE ratio, and I thought it was B.S.
It's a statistic. It averages stuff. It smooths stuff. The extremes, I pay attention to those extremes as well. So, clearly it was way, way up in '99, 2000, 2001. And clearly, it's gone up fairly high, but it's not – you know, so if you're a technician, you're saying this is a lower high, so it's going to go down. And I think people have anchored to interest rates have been really low, so they've priced assets accordingly. That is they priced them very high. So with interest rates higher, and I think probably naturally and rightfully staying higher, that this thing, the way it's structured, will drop.
Of course, I want to point to Joel Litman, and you'd always have to question earnings about really individual companies. But, in general, you could even argue you could question this ratio because the denominator is kind of a little strange. But yeah, I just [snores], next question.
Eric Wade: Yeah. Next question. I'm going to pass on that. I don't have anything to contradict.
Matt Weinschenk: Sounds good. OK. Let's move into technology. Adam Neumann, the post-CEO of WeWork, has a new startup with no operations, which plans to use blockchain to track carbon consumption and pair that with some sort of residential rental property business. And he's raised 350 million from a top VC firm. Does this sort of activity make you bullish, bearish – I mean, this one's kind of B.S. But I'll let you decide.
Matt McCall: This one just makes me laugh. I mean, who's going to give this joker $350 million? I mean, he's a walking crook in my opinion. It blows my mind. He has every buzzword in there. [Applause] Wow. OK. So I just have to call people crooks to get applause. It's the first applause. [Laughter] No, but seriously, I mean, it's all buzzwords that he's using there. And, you know, it shows, it actually scares me a bit. And it scares me because it shows that there's still a lot of money sloshing around out there looking at deals that really don't have any backing like you said.
Dan Ferris: Wait, wait, now you're getting bearish?
Matt McCall: Yeah. On Adam Neumann. He's also creepy. Look at the guy.
Matt Weinschenk: Yeah. That's why I picked that picture.
Dan Ferris: Yeah, I mean, you'll be surprised to learn that Matt and I agree on a whole bunch of stuff. And this is one of them. But it makes me bearish, like, breathing makes me bearish. So, you know, whatever.
But yeah, him being able to raise money, to still raise money, and the assets that he's trying to turn into like iPhones are like real estate. I mean, if you can still raise, what is it, 350 million – yeah, 350 million from Andreessen Horowitz, who I thought were smart, you know, to try to turn – or this is residential real estate into like something with iPhone-like properties. I mean, it's absurdly bearish to me. Believe me, at the bottom, you won't hear from this guy ever again, and he won't be able to convince anybody to give him a dime. It's ridiculous. It is absurd.
Eric Wade: It makes me bearish on everything because sign of a top, easy money, idiocy from people you expect to be smart. But I think what the real loser in all of this is, Matt used it, chock full of buzzwords. Not wrong. The real loser in this is nobody trusts the carbon market. Nobody. I don't – take the politics out of it because I believe as far as carbon markets go, the reason most of us don't trust the carbon markets is because it got really politicized and it got finger waggy. And it got judgy.
So we all say, you know it's easier just to say if you and I trade a carbon credit, and then you turn around, you sell it to Matt, and you both take credit for it. What? None of us like that kind of business. And now they're saying, I'm going to wrap some carbon-y, credit-y thing into some real estate-y, I go to work without shoes-on-y, kind of easy money stuff so that I can get the ESG money. Easy money begets easy money. I hate that. And whether or not carbon problem future caused by me and my lead foot, that doesn't even get solved by this because it stays political. It stays mushy.
And that's I'd like to see a solution to that. I'd like some science I could trust on this. And if you're splashing 350 million show pony dollars at it, you're putting that a decade off.
Dan Ferris: Actually, we should address the fact that 350 million is 1% of AUM. They don't care. It goes to zero, and they're like Adam who?
Doc Eifrig: Yeah, I can't add anything. I agree.
Matt Weinschenk: Cathie Wood of Ark Invest has written an open letter to the Fed warning of a deflationary bust. Bullish, bearish, or B.S.? Dan, you're already shaking your head.
Dan Ferris: Cathie Wood. Like I want to like her so much, right? She's a good entrepreneur. She started this thing in 2014. It took off, it did great. And she sold us all on disruptive innovation. But after you're down like 70%, or so, you should not be writing letters to the Fed. You got a few other things to do. You have a business to take care of. So it seems to be sort of this thing that happens in the world where somebody gets caught doing something fraudulent, or bad, or just poorly. And they're called out on it, and they start pointing fingers and blaming other people. So, you know, that's how it looks to me. It's silly.
Doc Eifrig: Yeah, for me, a letter to the Fed is like a letter to Santa Claus.
I mean, I'd send a letter to Santa Claus and say, "Eifrig wine, please."
Male: That's No. 2. [Laughter]
Matt McCall: I'll tell you what I mean. I still like Cathie Wood. I think her long-term thesis of disruptive innovation is great. Would you be surprised I have a picture of her hanging above my bed, you know, that I kind of bow down to every night? [Laughter] No, I don't. I'm joking. [Laughter] Yeah, that came out wrong.
Doc Eifrig: Where have you been in the last few years? Oh, my goodness.
Matt McCall: Her letter to the Fed? I agree with Doc. It's it goes nowhere. But the point I think what she's trying to get across is that with innovation, prices will come down over time. And, you know, a really simple example is I just bought a 75-inch TV that's this thin, and it is amazing. And it was like $800. And thinking about what that TV was years ago, that technology does bring down the cost of a lot of things. And I think that's what she's getting at that the innovation that will take place in the next decade-plus is going to eventually bring prices down.
Matt Weinschenk: OK. We're going to stay in tech for one more minute here. Mark Zuckerberg envisions over one billion people using the metaverse to spend hundreds of dollars on digital goods like clothes for their avatar, or things to decorate their virtual conference room. On the metaverse, bullish, bearish, or B.S.?
Eric Wade: It's B.S. I love the metaverse. I love the idea that we can escape. We can't escape, especially if there's anything to do with Meta, and Facebook is part of it. But, so, boy, what a contradiction there is your escapism. You're jumping into this ideal world. And I keep talking about the virtual trees, but can you cut them down? Can you use the resources from these virtual trees? That's where I'm my mind is going is what's going on in there?
Sure, sell me a pair of virtual shoes to wear on my virtual avatar. So the other virtual people will say, "Like the shoes?" I mean, I had to bring five pairs of shoes for this. How many shoes do I need to carry into the virtual metaverse now? Do digital shoes get old? How do I know when it's time to change these virtual shoes? Right? And I'll never be able to keep up with Matt. I gave up. You show up and you say, "Look at this." I caught him eating a doughnut today. He looks like this, and he eats a doughnut.
How does that translate over into the metaverse? Can I eat metaverse donuts, and look like Dan? I don't – so yeah, sure. It's all bullshit. At this point, it's all bullshit. It won't be in time. But I hope to the heavens above that there isn't a billion of us sitting around telling Mark Zuckerberg what waist size we have in the metaverse.
Male: I know. I just hope it doesn't happen.
Matt McCall: I don't think it's B.S. I honestly don't. And it's not that I'm going to be buying more virtual shoes to keep up with you. But I, you know, you look at these younger generations and my niece and nephews. And when I woke up in the morning and got on the bike. I went, and I had to be home by dark. These damn kids, they're on there. They're on their computers all the time. And we all look for its an escape from reality. And no matter how good or how bad our lives are, it's a very easy escape from reality for me, for younger people to do this.
And, boy, oh boy, I just – I'm not backing Zuckerberg. I'm not saying they're going to go through Meta to do this. But I think there's going to be, I mean, look at Roblox, and some of these games, how many users they have... and Atari. Dan just mentioned virtual land. You know, Atari bought a huge plot of land in Decentraland. Like they bought a plot of land, and I went through it. You could go in there, play games. Spend money. And it's pretty amazing. I mean, my little niece got me over it last Christmas. She's like, "Uncle Matt, can I use your card here? I'm going to buy this."
Shit, she's buying all kinds of stuff on some Roblox. And next thing you know, she's like the best Roblox player because Uncle Matt just bankrolled her. So, I do think there are – there's something there. I just don't know what it is.
Eric Wade: Can she grow wine on that land? [Laughter] Is there something going with that?
Dan Ferris: Can you imagine how much weed they're smoking at Atari to be spending money on virtual real estate? I mean, they're computer programmers, and they're buying virtual real estate. It's like God buying the planet or something. I mean, he can make a new one. It's the dumbest thing I've ever seen in my life.
Eric Wade: Wait, hold on. No, but there's something there though, right, is will there ever be – are we going wide or deep with this? We don't even know yet. Do we all want to be in the same metaverse? Or is there – can we exclude? Can we self-select? And is someone going to tell us who can join because you can just mint another one off in the boondocks, or can you?
Dan Ferris: What are you drinking over there? Are you –? [Laughter]
Doc Eifrig: I'm wondering if they forgot to give me my mushrooms before we came out. [Laughter] Look, people, grown adults have the right to spend their money any way they want. Pleasure. There's gambling. You can go to bullfights still. You can do whatever you want to do as adults. I know people that do this. I know 40-year-olds that still played Dungeons and Dragons. You know.
So what do you want to do with your – I'm curious, has anyone in here, or you know, we could everyone close your eyes, raise your hands, has anyone in here played or bought stuff in a virtual world like this? And would raise their hand and say – besides Eric? Anybody? A couple of people? Yeah. Interesting. I mean, you know, I think, I've never done it. So I don't know if it's an enjoyable, fun experience. But it seems bearish.
Matt Weinschenk: All right. Time will tell. OK. Let's move on to housing. Transactions in home sales have ground – have "to a halt" here. That's a little exaggeration. With September sales down 23% over last year. At the same time, we spent a couple of decades building homes at below the replacement rate that we need. So on housing, bullish, bearish, or B.S.?
Matt McCall: I think in the near term, I'm bearish. I'm looking for a home right now in South Florida. And I see the prices go down. So I wouldn't be buying right now. The problem is, if you're going to be borrowing money to buy that home, we have mortgage rates going through the roof. What, the highest level in 15 years, 20 years, something like that. So that, obviously, I wish I would have written this number down, but like one year ago, for an average home, your mortgage payment would have been $1,300, let's say with 20% down. Now it's like 2.5 times that with home prices going up and with mortgage rates considered in there as well.
So I think we're going to see a major slowdown. I do. And if the Fed is successful, and getting more people out of work, obviously it's less people out there. Longer term, though, I will say I remain bullish, because there's still that millennial generation that is starting their family formation a bit later in life. That means you move out of the condo or apartment in New York City, or Boston, wherever you live, and you move to these suburbs, you buy a home. And inventory still remains very low, historically speaking. So you put those two together. I think long term, we're fine. I think short term, I think we're in for some trouble.
Dan Ferris: Nothing to add. Spot on.
Doc Eifrig: Yeah, my take on this is the baby boomer, that cohort, the demographic cohort is really, really this large group. Many of them own lots of real estate. Many of them have lots of wealth in this real estate. I've personally thought this was going to happen in '09, '10, '11, where high-end real estate was going to plummet. I think that's going to happen now. And I think there's going to be this capitulation because I think those asset prices shot up because money was so cheap.
And, again, we anchor to the past, and anchoring to prices of assets that were related to low interest rates. I think that'll flip-flop, and I think it'll flip-flop fast. So I expect this to plummet. Yeah. So I'm very, very nervous about that. And I am now, probably for the first time in my life, real estate-free mainly because of that, you know, thinking about interest rates a year ago, and inflation.
Matt McCall: But, Doc, are you just worried about the higher end, or lower end as well, or entire housing market?
Doc Eifrig: I mean, I think on the entire. But the high end is inflated off the charts. Anyone go on Zillow and look, I love this, in the town where my winery is in Healdsburg. [Laughter] Thank you, Matt, for setting us up like this. This is beautiful. [Laughter] Both Matts. You know, there's like three-bedroom, one-bath ranches that were 10 years ago, $150,000, and are now listed for $1 million. I mean, that just makes no sense. And then the question is you have to think about replacement.
Could you build a house? Could you buy lumber and labor for a million or less than that? And that's the, to me, that's the dislocation. There's this cost of supply that hasn't adjusted and may never adjust. And so to me, if wealth, and the feeling of wealth, and fear continue, then I think this thing plummets. But again, I look at these places. And I'm just like, wow, who wants to own that for – like a million bucks is a lot of money. So yeah, I'm bearish.
Eric Wade: I'm bearish just because of a return to the mean that, what was it, six-twelve months ago, you list the three-bedroom, one-bath ranch. And as you're pushing the sign into the yard, you're telling people, "Well, do you want to get on the list of 50 people that are going to make an offer this afternoon," etc. Love realtors. Love real estate. A lot of them are selling them out of their vest pocket before it ever gets listed. That's not the real world. Right?
Real estate is not supposed to transact instantaneously. We have blockchain for that. [Laughter] But we got to pay the piper on that whether it's interest rates, whether it's population demographics changes. We've got to pay the piper on that. We were selling it way too fast. Sure, I grew up in a time that if your house sells in a month, you underpriced it. When do we get back to that? If your house sells in six months, you priced it right was a thing. We may never get back to that because the dollars are different. There's so many sloshing around.
And I say all of this knowing full well that in 12 hours, I'm going to drive by, anecdote, sample size, N1. Houses can't be made fast enough in central California, that they're still cranking them out and selling them for these ridiculous prices, that apparently they didn't get the message that this entire housing industry is slowing down. There's houses being built like crazy and bought before they're done. So is this a, you know, when a cruise ship crashes, it takes a long time for the crash? I'm not confident. Personally, I'm not confident that we're going to get through this unscratched like I think a lot of people are.
Matt Weinschenk: OK. So let's talk about those consumers. According to Deloitte, surveys from Deloitte, consumer fears surrounding inflation are now falling. And the number of Americans concerned about their level of savings fell from a high of 62% to 49%. Now, that's happened despite the ending of government stimulus programs, and fears of a recession, and the financial sector. So despite all this, consumers still appear very happy to spend. Does this make you bullish, bearish, or is that B.S.?
Matt McCall: It confuses me because it really goes in the face of every other kind of retail consumer number out there. You know, the retail investor numbers, it shows the AAII, we've all talked about for the last three days, how negative people are. So that kind of doesn't make any sense to me. I don't understand how that is. Maybe we're getting into the holiday season. I will say, though, there's something about retail therapy. I love spending money on like shoes and suits and things like that. And Doc's wine. I mean, I really do. [Laughter] It's honestly a great wine. It is. I get 50% off for saying all this.
Eric Wade: I'm sorry, you said Doc's what? [Laughter] Does he have a website? [Laughter]
Matt McCall: But no, seriously, there's something about Americans, the savings rate has come way down. And the fact that they're not concerned about that, Matt, concerns me. It really does. With the savings rate coming down, you should be the exact opposite. And with the holidays coming up, obviously. And that's a huge sign we'd be spending. And I think we will probably see retail sales at the highest level ever above last year. Whether that's smart or not, I think we will see that.
So I think there's as far as investing is concerned, let's bring it back to the stock market. I think there's a lot of great retailers out there right now that have gotten beaten down that I think are good long-term buys.
Dan Ferris: I agree with some of that. So you've got to pair this up with the depletion of savings and the rise in credit card debt, right. People actually got to be pretty good savers, and then now they're depleting it back down to near – not record lows, but down really low. And they're putting more on credit cards. So there's legs under that, you know. They're spending to come from that. But you know, eventually, that doesn't work out.
Eric Wade: I don't know if I have anything to add to that.
Doc Eifrig: Yeah, this number for me is confusing... denominator... has that changed in three years at all?
Matt Weinschenk: This is just trillions of dollars, consumer, personal consumption expenditure.
Doc Eifrig: Yeah. Yeah. But I'm just thinking the size of the economy in total. So is it as a percentage of that, a different shape? Flat? Low? The depletion savings? I like that. Yeah, this is an uninteresting chart for me.
Matt McCall: [Crosstalk] the COVID spike down. Think of the COVID spike down. It really goes straight up. It's in a really nice pattern. But if you could probably go back 20 years, it's the same trend. I assume, Matt, right?
Matt Weinschenk: Yeah.
Matt McCall: Like you're going to – spending continues to go up as the economy grows. I see what you're saying there, Doc. So percentage-wise, it's basically staying the same.
Eric Wade: Yeah. Yeah. But what's the number on there – from 12 to, it looks like 17-and-a-half... five-and-a-half trillion dollars? Does anybody remember anything happening recently where five and a half to six [crosstalk] trillions of dollars sent –. Did Grandma send that to send a birthday card or something?
Doc Eifrig: Yeah, five and a half.
Eric Wade: Let's keep doing that, Grandma. Grandma.
Doc Eifrig: Oh yeah. They printed five and a half trillion dollars. [Laughter]
Eric Wade: Yeah. Something like that. It'll be all right. This time is different.
Matt Weinschenk: On energy, a very big topic this year. Since the start of the year, oil prices have gone from around $75 per barrel to $110 immediately after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Now they're around $90. But oil production has only risen in North America about 6%, and at the same time, electric vehicle sales made up about 6% of vehicle sales this year. So energy, bullish, bearish, or B.S.?
Matt McCall: I'm now bullish. And I'll admit I was I was wrong. I'm late to the game here. I started buying energy stocks for myself maybe four months ago when they were pulling back a little bit. And I had to rethink my outlook for energy because I believe in renewable energy, and I believe in EVs. I think that's one of the greatest investments of this decade going forward. But just not coming out as quickly as we thought. The Ukraine conflict shows us that we still rely very heavily on fossil fuels.
And that transition into EVs and renewable energy is going to take a very long time. What's solar? Three-point-two percent of our energy right now. I mean, it's going to take a long time to get off that. So I like to take the barbell approach. I want to still invest in EVs and batteries. And on the other side, [laughter] I want to invest in oil companies too. Why are you looking at me like that for?
Doc Eifrig: I'm listening?
Matt McCall: I thought he's going to say something, the way he's looking at me. The barbell approach. So I like to invest in both sides. [Laughter]
Doc Eifrig: I like that, the barbell. No, I do. Yeah. Yeah.
Eric Wade: Can I say something ridiculous?
Matt Weinschenk: Yeah.
Eric Wade: Aside from the fact that our strategic petroleum reserves are being depleted, I don't like to see that just strategically. If you think, let's say you've got a 50- to 100-year time zone, and somebody out there must, spending everybody, burning everybody else's oil is a genius move because we will have, at this rate, we'll have the last drop here. I don't know how to monetize that yet. If I figure it out, you guys are going to get all kinds of e-mails about it. But if we can burn, and we're not going to stop burning and spending oil, right?
But if there's, if you think further than this winter, if you think kids, kids, kids, I sure hope we have the last 100 million, trillion, whatever barrels. Let's burn everybody else's oil. And let's pay for it with these cheap dollars that – I know dollars – looks great, right? The dollar is going crazy... looks great. But dollars now are worth less than they ever were, and they're there. Right? Take these dollars. Let me spend your oil, and I'll keep my oil.
If this was an inventory issue, we're doing it right. We're keeping our inventory. And everybody else will come to us later, and say, "Oh, shoot, can we have some of that oil we sold you back?" I don't like the way it looks or sounds or feels when I turn on the TV. But yeah, let's keep our oil 100 years from now, we'll be glad we did. And yes, that was ridiculous.
Doc Eifrig: No, that's brilliant. I really, seriously, that's fantastic insight. Wow. I'm now bullish. [Laughter]
Matt Weinschenk: OK. Let's move on to a crypto question. Through its 15-year life, the bitcoin community has offered shifting narratives for its purpose from Internet money for transactions, to digital gold, to uncorrelated asset. However, it's recent pitch as a safe haven protected from Fed meddling is faltered, and bitcoin has behaved more like a tech stock in the last couple of years. On bitcoin, does this make you bullish, bearish, or is bitcoin B.S.?
Eric Wade: Bullish. If 10 times your money in 42 months is bullish, I'm bullish. That's the path we're on, I think. And it's, yeah, it's all of the above. Bitcoin is and always has been all of the above. It's a funhouse mirror. You see what you're looking for in it. During COVID, bitcoin mimicked the health care stocks that were getting tons and tons of money. Is bitcoin a health care stock? Absolutely not. But it mimicked it. Bitcoin is a meme-zeitgeist generator because we are... because it doesn't have a personality of its own. It takes on the, OK, did I just describe tofu? [Laughter] It takes on characteristics of the meal you put it in. Bitcoin is rock-hard tofu.
Doc Eifrig: So it's very clear early on in my life that if you surround yourself with really bright people, and they like you, and they'll work for you, with you, you will look really, really successful. On this topic, people know. I don't know stuff at all about this, which is why we hired this guy. So I defer bitcoin to what he said.
Matt McCall: I'm going to chime in a little bit. Bitcoin, I just did this research right now. It says the volatility of bitcoin is now less than Nasdaq and the S&P for the first time, this was yesterday, since 2022. So the volatility, if you look at the volatility recently, it is really low. And to me, that's bullish, long-term, building a base. I think it is digital gold. That's how I lean to it. I don't look at it as a payment process or anything like that, or a new currency coming in. I truly believe that it will take place, the place of gold over time.
What 20-year-old wakes up and says, "Oh, I can't wait to buy some gold"? Most of you know me by now. And I think gold is this stupidest investment ever. And I know probably 80% of you own it. And you're probably thinking, Matt, you're an idiot. And I could be. And I know Dan's going to be like, "Ooh, for 5,000 years." Well, if I can live 5,000 years, then yeah, sure.
Eric Wade: It's not going to stop being true, though. It's 5,000 years and growing. It's 5,000 years and growing.
Matt McCall: I'm not going to live 5,000 years, unfortunately. But I think I still own all my bitcoin. I have not sold. I will say I haven't opened the account for like eight months. So I'm not quite sure where it's at. But I still believe in it long term as an asset class at some point, and it will decorrelate, in my opinion. And Eric may want to comment on it, decorrelate from the Nasdaq and the risk on assets. And when it does, it'd be even more attractive to me.
Dan Ferris: It already did. It hit that June 16 bottom, and it hasn't violated it, whereas stocks and bonds and everything have. And I saw these stories about the volatility falling. I mean, something that goes from like three to 69 to 17, is volatile. [Laughter] OK. That's the, you know, this is like a near-term, recent phenomenon. [Laughter] It's the most volatile, crazy thing in the world. So, but I think it's neat, and I hope it works because it's completely outside of the banking system. And I hope it stays there. I hope it really works one day.
Eric Wade: So if volatility bothers you, grab a glass of wine, and buy some volatility tokens.
Dan Ferris: [Laughter] OK. Will do.
Matt Weinschenk: OK. I do have one more question. But we're at five minutes. I wanted to see if we can get some questions [crosstalk].
Doc Eifrig: Before we do that, I just want to comment on December 1, Eifrig Cellars will be accepting bitcoin. [Laughter]
Matt Weinschenk: Do we have any questions that we can do for these last five minutes? All right. We've got one in the back over there. Wait for the microphone. Here it comes.
Audience: How y'all doing? Yeah. You talked about y'all seem pretty bearish across the board on the housing. I was thinking, what are your thoughts in terms –
Dan Ferris: No. No. Not bearish across the board on housing.
Audience: Well, on short term.
Dan Ferris: Maybe. But I think that's meaningless. You have to be, structurally, there's no way you can't be bullish housing long, you know, just slightly longer term. OK. Well, we're still getting over the hangover from 2006. It's 2022. We're not back there yet.
Audience: Yeah. OK. I understand. Well, my question is more in the short-term side, not the long-term side. I agree with you on, long term. But short term, I'm talking about, like, let's say there's a housing-led recession, especially if it might be severe. I don't know. No one knows. Aren't you more concerned about more of a downturn in the markets, like the S&P short term because it obviously indirectly affects earnings and things like that if there is a severe housing-led recession?
Matt McCall: No. No. I mean, as Dan just whispered in my ear, nobody knows the short term. I have no idea. And if you're buying a home as a flip, which most of you don't do these days, maybe. But you know, I take the long-term view. You buy a home to live in typically. You buy stocks for the long term. So I'm not concerned for the short term. You're probably not either.
Eric Wade: Are you guys enjoying this?
Doc Eifrig: I'm still short-term bearish, bearish, bearish, bearish. I am starting to see homes and places. And for me, late at night, I love looking at real estate, and I follow about four different places the United States. And homes that I thought were overpriced, that sold a year ago, six months ago, I'm now seeing people who bought those, and maybe they're flippers, spruced some of this stuff up, and now they're trying to sell it, and they're just trying to get out whole. Like the prices are the same. To me, that's an intelligent sign, but a sign of, I think there's going to be this, like I said, flush of higher-end stuff because that's kind of where the place I pay attention to. I sort of dream and fantasize about these multimillion-dollar homes.
Matt Weinschenk: Do we have another question? Right here in the middle.
Audience: We've talked about several markets today, which is interesting. My question is we have seen crypto pretty much parallel with the stock market kind of things. But do you see that kind of thing going forward? But maybe more importantly, what do you think would cause that to not correlate anymore? What kind of event could cause that?
Matt McCall: My quick answer, and then I'll let Eric answer. The event would be the stock market bottoming, in my opinion. And that complete risk-off trade of really selling everything, massive fear that we see, and all these sentiment readings, for that to go away. And then for bitcoin, crypto has become more of their own asset class.
Eric Wade: Yeah. That's not a bad answer. I mean, there's a lot. [Laughter] OK, that came out wrong. [Laughter] You guys know what I meant. Right?
Doc Eifrig: Yeah, it was a well-dressed answer.
Eric Wade: It's a very well-dressed answer. Who's eating a doughnut backstage and looks like that? OK. What is it going to take? Typically, correlation isn't as high as it has been, for between cryptocurrencies, and tech stocks, Nasdaq, etc. Investors have to literally start seeing the value of cryptocurrencies as its own asset class for it to break out because it's the money that's pouring into it that is behaving similarly. We also don't talk as much about the characteristics of cryptocurrencies that are different as much as we may be used to when we're all discovering it, scarcity and immutability, and stuff like that. That hasn't been as important to people as perhaps it could be in the future.
We've been having macro emotions, and macro thoughts, and herd mentality. And the only thing is going to separate that is if cryptos. Well, we've had a great rally the last 24-some-odd hours. If we can get a little bit of a rally going, I think the scarcity will come back into play. And the fact that it's volatile, but dramatically oversold compared to other assets. And I think that maybe we'll recover faster.
My general thesis is we're going to start front-running everything else because of scarcity, not because of fundamental difference or anything. Just because there's only so much of the top projects, I think people are going to want to be into them earlier than they're going to want to be into other asset classes.
Matt Weinschenk: Back there.
Audience: So has there been any speaker that you have heard at this conference that has made you more bullish or bearish? For instance, the geopolitical discussion, or anything else, did anything you heard change you or sway you in any way?
Matt McCall: I'd say last night, the colonel made me more bullish, basically, saying Russia's not that powerful. Not that strong. Putin is an idiot. I mean, I always thought he's a genius, the way the media talks him up. So after listening to him, I felt a little bit better about myself.
Eric Wade: Joel Litman, lit my fire.
Doc Eifrig: Yeah, and I'm an information junkie. So every talk I sit in, I go, oh, my God, the world is ending. Oh, my God, you know, that's Dan's talk. Oh, my gosh. America. Joel Litman. I'm, you know, that's the to me, the beauty of this thing is, we don't have one view, one voice. That's this as well. We're trying to kind of help people sort it out by just sort of listening, gathering information, so it fits your construct.
Matt Weinschenk: We have time for one more if anyone wanted.
Audience: With hindsight being 2020, a lot of recommendations lately, last year, so then no stops. Do you guys regret that? Or do you still say yeah, even though maybe some of those positions may be down substantially, that you agreed with no stop?
Matt McCall: I think he's probably talking to me. [Laughter]
Doc Eifrig: And I would defer to the head of research who is right next to him. [Laughter]
Matt McCall: I don't regret it. And I'm going to give a short answer, it'll be longwinded. But short answer is, you know, that's my strategy. I buy a basket of stocks that track a certain mega trend, or maybe six EV-related stocks. And I know that there's going to be certain ones that aren't going to make it, and other ones could be 10X to 20Xers. And I've been doing it for over 20 years, and it's worked. So I'm not changing my strategy because of 10 months coming down. So yeah, I stick with it.
Matt Weinschenk: OK. All right. Well, thank you guys for coming. It's been it's been a joy.
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