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Bank of America Gets Out the Broom; Potash Sweetens the Pot


Agriculture names up on a down day.


Hello from New York, where I've got the day off from work after a canceled tonsillectomy for young Superfly. I'm spending my time conducting a little social experiment I call "Contact People Who Make Fun of Me on YouTube."

It's a little experiment I created this morning after discovering a clip of a Canadian thrusting his stick towards my televised face. Apparently, my oft-repeated desire to stimulate the US economy by provoking Canada into a land war is less popular north of the border. The auteur suggested he was still more than happy to meet me "in front of the goal" anytime.

He doesn't want to just fight. He wants to fight on skates and at a specific area of the rink. If other Canadians start getting basic cable from America, I may not be allowed to visit the Skydome.

Anyway, between that and a guy who offered to teach me how to trade at a discounted rate in what had to be the cheapest promotion ever ("I'm sorry, that offer is only good if you, in fact, are financial television pundit Jeffmacke"), I decided it was time I reach out to the hoi polloi and give them some personal service. If, as Will Rogers said, "a stranger is just a friend you haven't met," guys who would make entire videos about me are practically blood brothers. Think of the thrill it would be for that Canadian who offered to fight "that bald-ass out in front of the goal anytime" to actually have me introduce myself over the phone!

Here's what I'm doing while I wait to give a couple fellas the thrill of a lifetime:

  • While Toyota (TM) and MGM Mirage (MGM) have earned the right to take a little break, Wal-Mart (WMT) jammed its discount arse into the jumbo doghouse this weekend with its lousy handling of terrible monthly results. WMT isn't cheap, even after the decline this week.

    Whatever you go on when you're beneath Double Secret Probation, that's where Wal-Mart finds itself in my portfolio. Forgiveness is for spouses, kids and good friends. Stocks run out of chances fast.

  • Speaking of which, this week's non-story is Bank of America's (BAC) Ken Lewis taking the broom to Merrill Lynch execs. If Mr. Lewis lived in New York, he'd easily be in the banker's pantheon, jockeying for the top spot with Jamie Dimon at JPMorgan (JPM). Did Michael Corleone recruit the heads of the other 5 families - or did he cull the herd? Point made.

  • While the shippers drift into the close -- ostensibly so the male heirs have cash for squiring Paris in LA -- the Ag names continue to show some strength, with my new best friend Potash (POT) giving me some love on a negative day.

  • No real replies from my would-be YouTube friends. Curiously (and, let's face it, this whole experiment is "curious") my energetic viewers are somewhat difficult to reach. Then, once you do, there's the immediate problem convincing them that you really are E-list cable guy Jeffmacke and, yeah, I saw you gouge at my face on the TV. Then, if you do get through that hurdle, they're really skeptical about me calling as no more than an amiable, if ill-advised, experiment.

With that, I'm off to hang with the kids. Have a great weekend, Minyans. I'll let you know how this Personal Touch thing goes for me...

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Position in WMT, POT

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