Monday, October 19, 2009

Monday Reading

It seems like we're witnessing a pretty substantial shift in global market leadership as every rally in China seems to be carrying over into Europe and the US. I wish someone would point out that the Indian and Chinese stock markets are relatively illiquid, immature markets that can be moved a great deal with a small amount of money. For the US to follow their lead is pretty scary.

When Intel started goosing estimates last week I wondered... Do you think Intel thinks Windows 7 is going to be another Windows 95? It wouldn't surprise me if the forecasters at the various parts of the PC food chain have ramped production in expectation of a big upgrade cycle from Vista to Windows 7. I'm not as close to the corporate tech buying cycle as I once was, but I can't imagine any CIO going to the CFO and asking to upgrade 20,000 pc's just because Microsoft launches a new operating system.

Seems like others are thinking the same thing.... via

"Comments by Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) yesterday apparently have triggered worries on the Street that the PC manufacturers, in their zealous optimism about the prospects for Microsoft Windows 7, may have built too many PCs.

As i noted last night, AMD said on its post-earnings conference call with the Street that it expect a less-than-seasonal sequential increase in Q4 revenues, due in part to the “the big build we’ve seen of PCs in anticipation of the Win 7 launch.”

A couple of interesting geo-political stories that could evolve into really big stories.

China rolls out water diversion project

China on Sunday unveiled a giant plan to relocate a vast population to make way for the south-north water diversion project. It is this project, which has caused concern with some experts saying it might affect the flow of Brahmaputra in Assam.

The Indian government has said it will try to find out if Chinese authorities are building a dam in Tibet as part of the project, which would cause serious harm to the Brahmaputra. Resettlement authorities in Henan said they have drawn up a massive resettlement project involving 330,000 people living in central China's Hubei and Henan provinces to make way for the water diversion project, which cut across the whole country. The process of resettlement will be completed by 2011, sources said.

Areas around the proposed Danjiangkou reservoir will be evacuated to build sluice for diverting water from the Yangtze River to meet water requirement in Beijing, Tianjin, Henan and Hebei.

This is a relatively small issue today, but India and China have about 2.5 billion people that need clean, fresh water. At least 100 million people in India depend on the Brahmaputra for their livelihood and daily water needs. As the glaciers in Tibet and Kashmir continue to retreat the battle for that water could one day be the next great conflict. China does not view India as a world power and will likely dismiss their complaints. India has a serious inferiority complex and they tend to overreact to items like this. President Obama should work on earning that Peace Prize by seeking to diffuse this situation ASAP.

Iran threatens to invade Pakistan?
I think you have to take these "threats" with a tablespoon of salt because I think they would have a hard time pulling this off. However, Iran is pretty confident that the attack against it's military this weekend came from Pakistan and that could be a problem for the US. Which horse do we back in that race -- Taliban, Al Qaeda hosting nuclear power Pakistan or nuke building Iran?

The commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) Maj. Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafary, Monday, Oct. 19, threatened "crushing" retaliation against the US, UK and Pakistan including the invasion of its eastern neighbor.

Jafari expanded on his charge by saying: "New evidence has been obtained proving the link between yesterday's terror attack and the US, British and Pakistani intelligence services." He spoke of evidence showing that all three supported the group. "A delegation would soon travel to Pakistan to present it," he said.

A military official in Tehran then suggested Iran might launch a military thrust into Pakistan against the group blamed for the attack. Lawmaker Payman Forouzesh said: "There is even unanimity that these operations (could) take place in Pakistan territory."


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