Good morning. Lots of results this morning, so I shall crank up a gear and get through as many as I can.

As an aside;

 

Bitcoin

Is anybody really surprised that things seem to be going badly wrong with Bitcoin? It was only a matter of time before it all went pear-shaped. People who think Bitcoin is a good idea should be sent on a compulsory reading course, to study other financial manias from the tulips, South Sea bubble, technology shares in the 1920's, technology shares in the 1990's, and of course technology shares now! So maybe we should start calling this the Third Technology Shares Boom (& Bust)?

The golden rule in my view is to always remember that anything which creates wealth out of thin air, with nothing of any real value supporting it, is just a speculation that will eventually fail. Some people might flag up fiat currencies, but that's different because they are issued by the State, and hence have the State's revenue raising power behind them. So whilst they can devalue, and become worthless if money printing creates a spiral of hyper-inflation, that's an extreme and rare event, and you can see it coming and get out anyway.

So personally I will always stick to assets where you own something of measurable, and sustainable value - i.e. shares (a part ownership of a business), bonds (a loan), or property (houses, cars, etc.). I will never own Bitcoins.

For people who did want to gamble on Bitcoin, its key selling point was that the whole thing was meant to be secure. It now clearly is not, as an exchange appears to have gone down, along with several hundred million dollars of Bitcoins apparently. That surely will be the death knell of this project? This type of asset is based on confidence, once that's gone you haven't got anything.

 

 

 

Synectics (LON:SNX)

This is a CCTV group that I've been following for years, since the days when it was called Quadnetics, a rather nice name I thought, so it seemed a backward step changing it to the difficult to pronounce Synectics.

Their final results for the year ended 30 Nov 2013 are out today. Whilst the results look OK, the outlook and reduced order book are a concern. The order book…

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