On Panic with Friends by Howard Lindzon

This post is by Om Malik from On my Om

A few weeks ago, my good friend Howard Lindzon (blogger, investor, and maverick) invited me to be on his Panic with Friends 1 podcast. Howard is a skillful interviewer and as always have to watch out for his trick questions. However, we are old pals, so we laughed a lot, and I josh with him a little. We ended up talking about the old times, the present times and what the future might look like after this pandemic/panic is over.

We ended up talking about technology’s loss of innocence, when it happened and why. My argument is that from the early days of the Internet to today, everything is twenty times bigger, and technology touches everything, and this pandemic is showing us that reality.

If anything there’s panic is making us understand how pervasive technology companies really are, I told Howard. Whether it is the broadband connections, our iPhones, Netflix, YouTube, DoorDash, Amazon, Zoom, Google, Microsoft, Slack — we are dealing with the pandemic with technology on one end, and medical equipment that is so basic on the other. Just as the 2008 financial meltdown turned big banks into behemoths, the pandemic is increasing the grip of technology on us, and technology companies are going to come out bigger on the other end.

My prediction is that the current lockdown and isolation is just a beta-test for what is to come. While we are worried about the pandemic, in reality, we should be preparing for a reality that comes from extreme weather and rapid climate change. Inhuman temperatures, crazy windstorms, rising sea levels — life as we have known it isn’t going to be the same. Life will have to exist with those extremes, but the question is, how is it going to happen? What is the moral responsibility of the technology companies and their leaders?

If we are smart, we should listen to the lessons we are being taught at present. Needless to say, I enjoyed this conversation, and I hope you get a few minutes to check it out.

  1. Howard Lindzon

The State of The Venture Market

While I have not been on the road for seven weeks, I continue to do Zoom calls with founders pitching interesting seed stage opportunities.

But from what I read, I can sense the venture markets changing a bit.

Tomasz Tunguz has a post titled ‘The Health Of The Venture Market in 2020‘ that is worth a read and has great charts.

The gist:

We are 12 years into the longest bull market in US history and this bullishness has powered the venture market. Investors deployed $117 billion in 2019 up from $106 billion in 2018.. This market has grown 20% over the last five years. It’s been go, go, go for nearly a decade.

However, Q4 2019 saw meaningful dip from Q3, but it’s too early to say whether it’s an aberration, or the beginning of a longer-term trend.

He closes with…

Looking at where we are in

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Some Market Stats That Made Me Go Hmmm…

Some of you are getting bounced when you reply directly to my posts via the email you get. I am looking into that with Campaign Monitor. In the meantime, you can just always reply and use my email howard at lindzon dot com.

Some of the economic stats I see about the US are really incredible. There have been 111 consecutive months (9+ years) of jobs growth, by far the longest streak in history.

Meanwhile, while an orange person take a bow for Dow 29,000, The Gold ETF has matched the Dow ETF in returns since 1998.

When it comes to investing in our 409k, if we wanted to keep up with the returns Fat Nixon expected us all to have, we all should have been invested in Palladium:

Meanwhile it’s getting cheaper and cheaper to kill Americans with Sugar:

Yes Tesla is at all-time highs which seems to

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My 409K is Lagging ….

Yesterday I was at the doctors and got a call from Max that he was involved in a car accident on his way to work. He sounded calm and I asked him if he was hurt. He said no. He Facetimed me the damage and scene to show that it was not his fault (which it was not) and I headed over to the accident scene.

An older woman had run a red light, causing a young man to swerve all the way across the intersection to try and avid hitting her, to only hit my son Max who was on his way to work. Luckily for Max he was just starting to accelerate from the green light and the car hit the front of his car.

I spent the day with Max waiting out the police report, the gathering of insurance and for Max to file his report with

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Mark Twain – Dave Chappelle….I Like Making Memories

I watched Dave Chappelle get the Mark Twain award the other night and it was fantastic. It is heartwarming to watch people still in their prime get honored by their peers like this.

His writing partner at The Chappelle Show – Neal Brennan had a great speech and tribute.

John Stewart was hilarious.

Aziz Ansari tells a great story

Sarah Silverman was funny and I loved how she explained how Dave’s angles of attack were so special. In the start up world, great founders and teams do the same.

Finally, Dave took the stage and did what he always does…kill. I really enjoyed it. He believes no other country could produce this many comedians and had so many other on point insights.

Have a great day.

Fashology in China?

I was watching this Chip Wilson (founder of $LULU) interview yesterday and he mentioned that he had been selling down his 9 percent position in LULU and buying the Nike of China.

I did not know there was a Nike of China . I thought Nike was the Nike of China.

Chip was talking about Anta Sports , founded in 1994.

The stock trades on the OTC markets under the ticker $ANPDF.

I tore off my LULU pants, sold them on Ebay and used the proceeds to buy a few shares myself. The whole thing made me hungry….

I kid the Chinese…

But yes I did buy a few shares.

Here is the Chip Wilson interview.

Rachel Turns 22….Any Advice?

It was Rachel’s 22nd birthday yesterday.

She has been home from the holidays which means she has had to stare at me mostly on the couch recovering or had to visit me at the hospital.

As she always does, Rachel makes the best of things. She’s been really busy catching up with her cousins and friends and yesterday she had a bunch of them over to celebrate and watch the first episode of the new season of the ‘Bachelor’ while I hid out in the bedroom watching hockey and the first season of Dracula on Netflix (Ellen ran out to do errands).

Rachel is heading into her last semester in college and has so many opportunities ahead. I remember being 22 and not having any idea what I was going to do. I had an undergraduate degree and the stock market had just crashed (1987) so my first job at

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Momentum Monday – War…What’s It Good For?

As a reminder, Marketsmith (by Investor’s Business Daily) is now a sponsor of the weekly show. All the charts you have been seeing in the videos and will continue to see are from Marketsmith. They are offering my readers a three week trial for $19.95. Click this link if you would like to try it out.

The headlines on Friday were all about war and Iran which got me thinking about the famous song by Edwin Starr which asks ‘War – What’s It Good For’?

The answer…

Absolutely Nothing.

Stock traders would argue – defense stocks – which hit all time highs on Friday as Iran moved from page 10 to page 1 of the news.

Ivanhoff and I did our weekly tour of the markets highlighting trends and momentum. You can watch/listen here.

Here is what stood out to Ivanhoff:

1. We saw a notable inflow in capital

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The Art of NOT Selling

I am an early seller.

Steven Wright – the comedian – tells a joke about being born by cesarian…he knows this because he leaves parties via the upstairs window.

Maybe I was 3 months born early. I’m always leaving the comfort of a great stock the first chance I get!

Ellen and I have always bought our houses right but selling them has been a mistake. We should have kept them all and eventually AIRBNB would have made holding a profitable way to keep them.

My current biggest stock positions are Apple and Google and LULU but since they are at all-time highs as I speak, all my sales in the past have been clunkers. I should have bought some more stock each time I was thinking of selling. I should also be adding to my position each time I buy their products.

What am I taking about?

Yesterday I

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2020 Fintech Prediction Palooza

Some of you have noticed that I have already missed a day of the blog in 2020.

Unfortunately, I spent the last two days in the hospital with a bad infection of my colon. It is under control now and I am back home feeling good, but to be honest I was scared and not in the mood to write while I was getting all my tests and feeling terrible.

Let’s get back on track with a longer prediction post I have been woking on.

I made a few predictions last week but today wanted to write about the area I focus on…fintech. Our fund has not announced a couple of our most recent fintech investments but will be doing so shortly.

In the last 10-12 years fintech (I started making fintech investments in 2006) has gone from a neglected category to a very crowded ‘can’t miss’ venture capital playground.

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Investing Is So Easy…

Last year, Apple and Microsoft accounted for 1/3 of the Nasdaq 100’s great 37.8 percent year. If you listen closely you can hear 1,000 hedge funds closing.

I was smart enough to own Apple but do not own Microsoft.

No wonder more and more people turn to indexing and simple asset allocation when it comes to public market investing. If you can’t beat ’em…join ’em.

Last week these two tweets appeared back to back in my timeline and caught my attention.

I am not recommending 3x leverage Nasdaq 100 as a buy and hold strategy (most of us would have been sick with the many 30-50 percent over the 10 year period), but you can see why fewer and fewer people want to pay 2 and 20 for access to hedge funds.

Today Vanguard Joined the ‘free trading’ club to start the new year.

We are all hedge funds

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Happy New Year – 2020 Here We Come

I am excited about turning the calendar. I have no doubt that 2020 will be an interesting year.

I love writing every day on the blog. I am amazed at how far and wide the readership extends. In response to my story about my uncle Jack yesterday, I received this amazing note….

Hello Howard:

My son-in-law – an investing enthusiast – is a follower of yours. He just sent me the link to the story of your hero Uncle Jack. What an amazing story. I’m happy to know Uncle Jack is alive and well.

I thought you’d be interested in knowing that my father, ***** *****, took that photo of your uncle. He was working for the Toronto Star at the time.

I have a crate filled with Dad’s negatives & slides. If I ever come across this photo of your Uncle Jack I will get you a copy. Free

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