April 30, 2024

On Monday … I forgot to make a comment… Tesla was up about 16%….

On Tuesday, markets were weak as the S&P 500 was down a hefty 1.6% and Toronto was down 1.4%.

I see some¬† Cannabis stocks which are tiny slivers of what they used to be were up very substantially today. I really don’t care to even glance at the reasons why. Not my thing. But going to BNN I could not help seeing that the reason was a potential reclassification of it in the U.S. Whatever.

Canada’s GDP number for February was lukewarm at best. That’s actually a good thing for those who are hoping for lower interest rates.

One of Warren Buffett’s companies a utility named PacifiCorp is facing potentially $30 billion in liabilities for allegedly causing or contributing to destructive wildfires. These awards and potential awards are outlandish. If push comes to shove, Buffett will likely declare bankruptcy of that utility. He would not want to do that but he also is not about to let this take down his other utilities. As big as $30 billion is, it’s not large enough to be any major threat to Berkshire as a whole. And in any case I doubt that Buffett will pay anymore than is legally required and the way to minimise that is to declare bankruptcy of PacifiCorp if the $30 billion number stands.

I worked in the field of utility rates and regulation for 29 years. The “deal” on rate regulated utilities has always been that all costs are passed on to customers other than minor forecast errors (short-term cost overruns)¬† and other than sort of gross negligence. I have a hard time believing that PacifiCorp was grossly negligent. Basically the regulators are reneging on the long-standing “regulatory compact”. We shall see where this ends up.

 

 

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