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Thread: Esoteric Investment Schemes/Strategies

  1. #1
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Esoteric Investment Schemes/Strategies

    Okay, I was joking on the 'Random Thoughts' thread about investing in postage rate futures, but there really are investments schemes equally unusual out there. I once heard about people involved with trading in AIDS patient life insurance futures! Talk about morbid! Bear also recently bumped a thread about 'private equity groups'. Not something I hear about every day, but perhaps people more closely involved in money management treat it as a fairly mundane thing.

    Commodities trading (as anyone who has ever seen the movie "Trading Places" can tell you) is really nothing but legalized gambling. One doesn't hold commodities to collect dividends or stockholder proxy votes. Nope, you just buy and sell based on whether you think the price is going up or down - plain and simple.

    Real Estate has spawned more than its fair share of unorthodox (and sometimes illegal) investment schemes as well. For instance, no one ever heard the term 'time share condo' before 1980 (or some time around then), now one ever visits Disneyworld without first listening to a high pressure time-share sales pitch. I think it's a law in Florida that all adult residents have to volunteer at least 5 hours a week pitching time share condos (or is doing so one of the ways one can serve their 'community service' time....I can never keep that straight)?

    What other strange, unusual, or obscure investment schemes have you heard about? (spammers be forewarned: this is NOT an opportunity to tell us about freeing up your assets in Nigeria! or providing links to any other great investment 'opportunities')
    Last edited by Maister; 15 May 2007 at 11:29 AM.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    I hear that sweat rags that are tossed into the audience at concerts are a great investment! Even more so if they are admitted into rehab or have been accused of snorting their cremated father’s ashes.

    It is funny because I hear people refer to their cars as investments... yet 99.9% of the time, those go DOWN in value. Personally, I like my investments to be work more, not less, later in life.

    I also wonder about other collections. Are you going to be able to pay for your kids Base College Education with your Grandpa’s Base Ball Card Collection?
    "A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom. Time makes more converts than reason." - Thomas Paine Common Sense.

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by michaelskis View post
    It is funny because I hear people refer to their cars as investments... yet 99.9% of the time, those go DOWN in value. Personally, I like my investments to be work more, not less, later in life.
    Cars can be a good investments, quite apart from their resale value (or lack thereof). Even when they totally depreciate they provide value by enabling people to earn livelihoods and income in locations that are too far for them to walk to. Not all investments provide monetary returns.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    How about Japanese Maples? Go to a garden center, and you'll see two-year old twigs for $30, three-year old small trees for $60, and four-year old trees for $120 and up. That's a 100% annual return, if you buy one for investment to sell later.

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan View post
    How about Japanese Maples? Go to a garden center, and you'll see two-year old twigs for $30, three-year old small trees for $60, and four-year old trees for $120 and up. That's a 100% annual return, if you buy one for investment to sell later.
    Much like my postage stamp scheme, you just thought that crap up off the top of your head, didn't you?

    Hmmm, I wonder what's involved in maintaining a Japanese maple tree for three years? What kind of overhead expenses and maint. costs would one be looking at? On a related note you ever priced out bansai trees and shrubs? Talk about labor adding value!
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    I saw a news story on Alpaca's (think miniature Llama) going for $20,000 and up for a pregnant female. Now if we can develop a market for pregnant feral cats in my neighborhood, I'll be putting out the live traps tonight. Infinite supply, low overhead and performing a public service. Couldn't get much better than that.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Brocktoon's avatar
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    Look at option strategies. The names alone are reason enough to invest:

    Straddles, Strangles, Butterfly Spreads are a few I can think of off the top of my head.

    Derivatives and insurance contract markets get as esoteric as one can get. CDO's are also fun.

    Investments are like kink, what ever your interested in, someone is out there selling it.
    "If you don't like change, you're going to like irrelevance even less" General Eric Shinseki

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