Archive for August, 2011

  • Investments in farmland soar

    Posted By : Daniel Kiernan on August 15th, 2011

    Location : farmland

    Investments in farmland soar

    Investors find respite from the cyclical price swings of the commodities market

    Perry Vieth baled hay on a neighbour’s farm in Wisconsin for two summers during high school in 1972 and 1973. The gruelling labour left him with no doubt about getting a college degree so that he’d never have to work as hard again for a paycheque.

    Thirty-eight years later, and after a career as a securities lawyer and fixed-income trader, Vieth is back on the farm. Except, now, he owns it. As co-founder of Ceres Partners, a Granger-based investment firm, Vieth…

  • Gold to Rally Through 2012, S&P Says

    Posted By : Daniel Kiernan on August 12th, 2011

    Location : gold

    Gold to Rally Through 2012, S&P Says

    Standard & Poor’s is recommending gold and gold miners as top investment picks only days after downgrading U.S. Treasuries, which sparked a firestorm in financial markets worldwide that boosted the price of the precious metal.

    S&P’s Equity Research Services unit made the recommendation Wednesday. It is independent of the firm’s Ratings Services division, which lowered its long-term credit rating on the nation’s debt to AA-plus from triple-A with a long-term negative outlook Friday.

    Gold futures tumbled today after CME Group, owner…

  • Self-Storage as an Alternative Investment

    Posted By : Daniel Kiernan on August 11th, 2011

    Location : Alternative Investments

    Self-Storage as an Alternative Investment

    Many agents I speak to are very keen to be able to offer commercial property investments as it’s a sector they and their clients feel very comfortable with. For the same reasons, they’re also keen to be able to offer UK based investments. This month I wanted to write about a new sector coming into the alternative investment market that meets both of these criteria – investing in self-storage. With favourable commissions, an easily understood core proposition and a strong appeal to clients this is a sector worth investigating.
    What is sel…

  • Commodity Care

    Posted By : Daniel Kiernan on August 10th, 2011

    Location : gold

    Commodity Care

    This month I wanted to write about one of the major alternative asset classes – commodities. I’m sure most of you are familiar with the spectacular run commodities have had for the last ten years and I’m sure many of you and many of your clients are wondering whether now is a good time to buy, sell or continue to hold commodities. In this month’s column I’ll outline the arguments for and against investing in commodities and give you some ideas for adding commodity style investments into your offering to your clients.

    The Investment…

  • Gold: to have and to hold

    Posted By : Daniel Kiernan on August 9th, 2011

    Location : gold

    Gold: to have and to hold

    With turbulence in global markets reaching boiling point thanks to a deepening of the eurozone debt crisis and pessimism about the ability of the US to keep its finances in order, risk shy investors have flocked to gold as a safe haven investment.

    With the yellow metal reaching new highs it might seem that gold hasn’t got have much further to rise. However, analysts are convinced that as long as there is uncertainty, gold will continue its upward climb. So it’s not too late to up your exposure and with gold mining equities significantly lag…

  • Is Farmland becoming a safe refuge ?

    Posted By : Daniel Kiernan on August 8th, 2011

    Location : farmland

    Is Farmland becoming a safe refuge ?

    If you can’t buy gold to protect your wealth in the face of global economic uncertainty, is farmland the next best thing?

    London and country agents Savills says the value of grade three arable land rose 3.3 per cent during the second quarter, following a 2.7 per cent rise in the first three months of this year.

    The average value is now £5,900 an acre, up by almost 200 per cent on a decade ago.

    Ian Bailey, head of Savills rural research, says: “This average half year growth of six per cent accounts for nearly two-thirds of the grow…

  • Sun rises on tequila plant harvesting for biofuel

    Posted By : Daniel Kiernan on August 5th, 2011

    Location : renewables

    Sun rises on tequila plant harvesting for biofuel

    The agave plant, from which tequila is derived, may be the answer to Australia’s thirst for fuel.

    IT FUELS MEXICO’S ECONOMY and fills the world’s shot glasses, but the succulent agave plant – from which tequila is distilled – could also help quench Australia’s thirst for a low-emission biofuel.

    A new study, published last week in the journal Energy and Environmental Science, shows that the agave plant (Agave tequilana) produces five times the amount of energy that’s put into growing it. This makes the ethanol derived from agave – which pr…

  • UK Green Investment Bank: Lessons to be learnt from our neighbours

    Posted By : Daniel Kiernan on August 4th, 2011

    Location : renewables

    UK Green Investment Bank: Lessons to be learnt from our neighbours

    In 2010 the UK proudly announced that it would be the first country in the world to create a bank dedicated to investing in greening the economy.

    How France and Germany operate their green banks, by Ursula Hartenberger and James Rowlands

    Although it was originally announced by the previous Labour Government, the Conservative – Liberal Democrat coalition has pushed ahead with proposals as part of its green agenda. When it comes to green credentials, the UK has a strong tradition in wanting to be top of the class, even if only on paper. B…

  • Billionaires’ Wine Thirst Quelled by Record Bordeaux Futures, Sale Prices

    Posted By : Daniel Kiernan on August 3rd, 2011

    Location : wine

    Billionaires’ Wine Thirst Quelled by Record Bordeaux Futures, Sale Prices

    Surging demand for Chateau Lafite and other French trophy labels, especially from Asia, has pushed both prices at auction and wine futures to records. Not all wine dealers are happy.

    The prices for some of the most expensive bottles are starting to discourage even billionaire collectors, said dealers — some of whom had warned in January of a bubble that could burst in 2011. Chinese and other buyers balked as some Bordeaux producers raised prices as much as 80 percent last month for the new vintage offered “en primeur,” when it is sti…

  • Live discussion: Feed-in tariffs and large scale investment in renewables

    Posted By : Daniel Kiernan on August 2nd, 2011

    Location : renewables

    Live discussion: Feed-in tariffs and large scale investment in renewables

    • Join The Guardian for an interactive online discussion to explore the renewable energy agenda beyond changes to feed-in tariffs
    • Thursday 4 August from 2-4pm (BST)

    For organisations looking to reduce their impact, decisions around energy are far from clear cut. Despite calls for a stable regulatory environment, government policy often sends mixed messages. In particular, changes to feed-in tariffs, which take effect from 1 August, have resulted in a lack of clarity.

    The changes mean that larger installations will no longer qualif…

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