Friday, January 23, 2015

Too young or Too old

You feel young and people around you are talking about the days of Palm computer and handheld device. "Those were the days".

You feel old when you know that you have lived the era of Nokia phones.

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Data and me - 5 (Government debt)

There has been a lot of discussion lately on increasing the debt ceiling for government to borrow more money.
WP article on debt ceiling

It was time to check the government throughout the world as to how much debt each country has? A very interesting representation was the "General Government debt as a % of GDP". Once again thanks to Google public data explorer. Though the data representation is upto 2011 only but it gives an insight of the state if debt in various developed / developing countries.

Another interesting data to explore is the "Government budget balance (revenue - expenses) as % of GDP"

I let the numbers speak for themselves.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Data and me - 4

Fuel price at pump: A very interesting dataset that provides purchase price of fuel in various countries.

it does not springs surprises with Germany at the very top in the sample space. An interesting piece over here is the rising cost of fuel as evident from all the countries increasing gradient except Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Data and me - 3

Watching the stock trends with market sentiments is a very interesting way of analysing a key piece of hidden information.

One company's stock was of particular interest. Netflix (The link takes you to Google Finance). I will take snapshot from the Google finance.

This was a roller coaster of a ride. What is funny is the fact that it weathered the crisis (just held on) but fell down on a steep slope sometime in 2011.

The stock is on its way to the days of glory though but what a ride it had. Trying to figure out some of the other stocks which had this kind of ride.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Data and Me - 2

Check the graph below.

What really happened in India between 1998 and 1999? which lead to the spike we see.

The answer is National highways development project. The sad part is the momentum couldn't be maintained post 1999.

And there we almost had the world class infrastructure.

Data and me - 1

Recently I have started looking at the Data / numbers to make out some meaning out of it. I found one really good source. Google Public data. I will try to understand and give my thoughts on some of the analysis I do.

I think this is self explanatory. The lost of trust in politicians.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Dream of a House

Its been 2 years since I am trying to comprehend the reason behind the financial hiccup (yes, I believe somehow, the puke is yet to come) which happened in the world financial markets. Off course all the explanations have been really confusing to a techie like me. Its as confusing as the financial instruments that the bankers of the 21st century envisioned. CDO, synthetic CDO, and what all.

One thing has been evident in this whole mess. Its the dream. The dream to own a house which was a key player and enabler. 
(Remembering a popular Hindi song - "Do deewane sheher mein , raat ho ya dopahar mein ,.....aashiyana dhoondte hain.....")
Well, its been some time I have been watching these documentaries (2 years to be precise, 1 movie too) and everywhere it has been shown that the price of the houses fell. Well, the price of the houses rose tremendously (around 2006) but why did they fell? And somehow this piece of puzzle has not been sorted out completely. May be I might not have been paying too much of attention to the finer details but I thought let me try to put this puzzle in place.

So, Why did the prices rise in first place? More buyers, less houses. Prices rise. And there comes the proposition of easy loan. And here comes more buyers. So again, supply and demand mismatch. Price again soars. But apparently , there is a catch. This so called easy loan is not as easy. Apart from the fact that they did not check the credit worthiness of the buyer, it also has something known as "Predatory Lending". (Please Google it for exact meaning). In short, confusing terms and conditions.

Even, I might not be able to pay for the house, still I am able to secure a loan on that house. I don't know how will I pay? But who cares? Let the sky falls first, then I will think. So there is a risk involved which the bankers shared though some complicated mechanism (which was unregulated). So far so good. This could have continued like the same way. More and more people could have come and bought the house. I could not find an reasoning behind as to why the house prices fell.

My first thought was that a kind of good(or bad) sense prevailed in the buyers that whatever is happening is not right. I might not be able to pay for the house. Apart from the fact that the easy loaners started defaulting on there loans. And houses were foreclosed. Suddenly there was no dearth of houses in the market. More houses less buyers. Again demand and supply mismatch and hence maybe lowering of the prices. And the risk really became a RISK to the financial system. (That the price of housing market will never  fall)

This could be just my distorted interpretation of the whole thing happened couple+1 years back. So please do not quote me in your research projects.

Shout it loud..IPO

Well, so here it goes. A big social networking company makes its rendezvous with the stock market. Hey everyone, come be a part of this dream. Become rich. Lets share this greed. So how much greed is enough will always be a philosophical question, but why a company should go public can have some objective reasoning behind it.

I try to find some reasons that hit my peanut size brain as to why will anyone take the company public.
1) Its the IN thing to take a company public :- Why not? You gain the respect of the business community a build a credibility in the market. Hey you, I have Maybach, a private Jet. What do you have? I have a public company. Yikes!!!!!!
2) Need money to expand operations :- Pretty genuine reason. But if a company is making a hell lot of profit, does it give enough grounds for needing money to expand operations?
3) Let me make common public the part of my success story :- well, I am not running a charity institution. Mind you, the first one to benefit out of a company going public for sure will be the VCs needing to take there money out and put it some other place to make even more MONEY.

Reminds me of the ABBA song, "Its a rich man's world".

Well on the same lines, why would one not take the company public? Dude, its no more a private affair. Share holders need an answer for the private jet you took for honeymooning.

Some how it makes more sense to me for a company to stay private for as long as possible and avoid this whole fanfare of going public. Business is for wealth creation. But for whom? For everyone, then I am living in a socialist world.

I am not a business thinker neither a noble prize winner in economics. Just a Techie who happened to be away from coding for sometime now and hence all the thoughts expressed above are nothing more than the ramblings of an idle brain.

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Back in time

My blogger account shows that last post I published was "Mar 4, 2011". As I am on the anniversary of my post, I thought of scribbling something.

Did I get too much busy in the daily grind or may be I was just procrastinating. But the bad weather outside makes sure that I cannot go out and sit inside the drab hotel room all alone. And that I do something with my time instead of killing it sleeping. At least, I made sure to have started on my indoor gym schedule.

I thought about mentioning another activity which I started after a hiatus. I joined Beachwood, OHIO public library. Needless to mention, I really like the public library concept in this country. So the activity which I started was reading a book. I had shortlisted 2 books in my wishlist. "Its not about bike" and "Emperor of all maladies". Both the books are about a disease whose cure is still researched upon in today's medical world. Cancer is not a lifestyle disease but something that human race has pretty much lived through it. May be somebody can correct me if I am wrong but my understanding of this disease has more to do with human genes and the way these genes function. sometimes they just do not behave the way they are intended too (controlling the life cycle of a cell) and hence we have the abnormal behavior ( cell overgrowth). The cure would be almost altering the genome sequence and make it behave the way which is good for human. In short, the cure might be nothing less than becoming a God.

I found the book "Emperor of all maladies" and started reading it. The book is really an engrossing read and I continued till some point in this book. But something prompted inside of me to just stop this reading. I was getting scared. Reading about a disease and how people live through it literally scared the "sh** out of me". Knowing that human race is trying hard to find a cure of this gene malfunction does not give a hope or a smile on the face.

So I decided to stop it but this does not in any way reflect the book's worth. If it came so close to make me feel the way I described, then it is indeed something. So try picking up this book and give it a shot. May be you might love reading this or maybe like me jut stop it. But as they say, "you cannot ignore it".

My achievement would be to have at least one more post before "Mar 4, 2013".