Submitted by QTR’s Fringe Finance
This is Part 1 of an exclusive interview with Doomberg, the collective that runs the Doomberg Substack. During this interview series, we discuss their outlook on 2022, China-based equities, Joe Rogan’s influence on the media, ARK Invest, silver and gold, the Elizabeth Holmes trial and inflation.
On my last interview series with Doomberg, they predicted uranium would “double or triple” and laid out a case for oil going to $300 per barrel.
Doomberg publishes skeptical analyses through the hard money/Austrian lens and its objective is to be funny without being silly, to teach without being self-indulgent, and to provoke without being polarizing. They publish 10-12 pieces a month, which you can read for free here.
Q: Welcome back, my Doomy Substack friend. Let’s get right down to brass tacks: what 5 stocks do you personally have the most exposure to heading into 2022 — long and short — and why?
A: As a rule, we hold very few public company stocks. Our strategy is to earn income in fiat, to save some of it by buying real assets, and to invest the rest of it in private companies where we can directly help create value.
We do hold positions in commodities, especially uranium, oil, gold, and silver, but we prefer to own the commodities themselves and not individual companies. We generally don’t short stocks because we don’t hate money. When we do write critically about a company, like we have done with AMC (AMC), Uber (UBER), and Beyond Meat (BYND), we make it clear we do so as analysts without a monetary position either way.
Fair enough. Here’s something we didn’t discuss last time we spoke — what’s your outlook for US listed China equities in 2022 and why?
It baffles us that the US allows any Chinese equities to be listed on our exchanges at all. Those companies aren’t beholden to our accounting rules and many of them are outright frauds.
Buying a paper claim of a Cayman Islands entity that allegedly has a paper claim on a company based in China is the ultimate greater fool’s trade. Good luck enforcing your ownership rights.
Of course, it [also] baffles us that JPEGs of monkeys are changing hands for millions of dollars each, so we clearly lack critical information about what is driving investor behavior. If forced to choose between the two, we’re picking the monkeys.
I recently predicted the mainstream media would be forced into changing their tune on Covid due to Joe Rogan’s influence. (a) Do you agree? And (b) Could this possibly happen to financial media at some point?
We thoroughly enjoyed your excellent piece on the impact Joe Rogan is having on the media and agree that he is a powerful force in large part because of his authentic curiosity.
The traditional media complex in the West is a dying industry, as the growth of alternatives like Spotify and Substack demonstrate. Whether the media changes its tune on Covid or not is a different story. This will likely be determined by how Team Biden views their electoral chances in the 2022 midterms.
The hysteria and propaganda on Omicron are amazing. The disconnect between what we see and read in the news and the life we personally experience in the real world is staggering. The cure for Covid is turning off the TV.
As for the financial media, the greatest threat to them is Substack. There are so many great writers producing unique and thought-provoking pieces on that platform. We are just thrilled to be a small part of it.
What do you make of ARKK heading into 2022. Opportunity to invest due to its dislocation from the NASDAQ or bellwether of bad tidings? Why?
We have not written about Cathie Wood or Ark Invest, so our assessment is based mostly on the work of others. We would never invest in any of those funds because many of their holdings are radically overvalued, overhyped, and destined to fail.
Furthermore, some of her largest positions are held in comparatively illiquid stocks, and if her funds continue to see outflows there’s a risk of a downward spiral
[QTR’s Note: I discussed the idea of downward spirals due to ETF flows with ETF expert Eric Balchunas, here, days ago.]
Her trades are updated daily, as are her fund flows, so everybody in the world knows the vulnerabilities in real time.
If an investor wanted exposure to the type of “innovative” companies she claims to own, a safer way to do it would be to peruse her holdings and build your own portfolio of individual stocks, which minimizes spiral risk and circumvents her fee structure.
The gold to silver ratio is back to 80:1. What’s your outlook on metals into the new year?
We view gold and silver differently.
Gold is money, and so we treat it as such and don’t concern ourselves with how it is priced in fiat. When we buy gold eagles for the safe, we view it as saving money for the future and hope our children will thank us when the lock’s combination is passed down to them.
Silver is different in that it is both money and an industrial metal. We are broadly bullish on commodities in 2022, especially those susceptible to production cost inflation like silver. Also, given silver’s use in the production of solar cells, demand could grow as governments put a bid under renewables. Silver is more volatile and difficult to trade, so we don’t.
The easiest way to allocate a portion of your portfolio to silver is by HODLing some PSLV.
Part 2 of this interview can be found here.
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I am short ARKK, long KWEB, TME, XOM, CCJ, URA, URNM, oil and uranium and various gold and silver miners/names. I may add any name mentioned in this article and sell any name mentioned in this piece at any time.
It should be assumed Doomberg has positions in any security or commodity mentioned in this article and may transact in them. Answers are the opinions of the interviewee. None of this is a solicitation to buy or sell securities. Doomberg has contributed to my podcast but this interview was not part of any sponsorship or ad deal or contract, it was initiated by me because I enjoy the blog’s content and wanted to ask questions that I believed my readers would benefit from. It is only a look into our personal opinions and portfolios. These positions can change immediately as soon as I publish this, with or without notice. You are on your own. Do not make decisions based on my blog. I exist on the fringe.
The publisher does not guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the information provided in this page. These are not the opinions of any of my employers, partners, or associates. I get shit wrong a lot. If I am here listing things I got right or things I think will happen in the future, note that there are likely twice as many things I got wrong over the same period of time. I’m not a financial advisor, I hold no licenses or registrations and am not qualified to give advice on anything, let alone finance or medicine. Talk to your doctor, talk to your financial advisor or your therapist. Leave me a alone and do your research elsewhere. If you can find somewhere to rate this Substack one star, please do so as to save future readers from the misery of my often wholly incorrect prognostications.