No. of Recommendations: 2
Greetings, our wise and benevolent leader!

My choices for 2013... I am not nearly as confident as last year, but since I am in just about last place, maybe that is a good thing?

Safe Bet: I will go with copper, in the form of FCX (Freeport-McMoRan Copper and Gold).

Long Shot: ERF, an oil and gas company in the US and Canada that has been beaten down heavily this past year. I am hoping their recent moves have them poised to return to profitability, with a bounce in share price as a result.

So, both of my choices this year are commodities getting stuff out of the ground. The big picture with commodities shows very large, long-term swings. We have had a huge run-up to 2008, then a big drop... but in the big picture, I think the commodities boom has only begun, driven by the emergence of pretty much everywhere besides the US, Japan, and Europe.

Commodities do well in a bullish cycle, and not so good in a bearish one. But I have just about given up on trying to sort out the political, economic, central banking policy, and other factors that seem to be shoving the economy and the markets around like punching bag. So, I picked value and a sector that was out of favor this year.

I see rubberthinking is long a Japanese index. I seriously considered doing a variation on my short of Japanese bonds this year, but doing a 3x short the Yen instead (my theory is that the money will collapse before the bonds as Japan can print, unlike Greece). But, any weakness in the Yen will only help Japanese exports, which tends to correct. This may be the trade of the century, as some people say, but there are still 88 years left in this century, and it may take more than just one for that play to work out. So, I passed on that one.

Good luck to all!

Doug
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