Trump's Broken Social Media Venture Is Valued At Billions Of Dollars And Its Breaking Experts' Brains

from the the-nftification-of-stocks dept

Last week we wrote a bit about Trump's new planned social media website, Truth Social (which forbids too many capital letters, so I will oblige by not capitalizing the entire "Truth" part of the name, as Trump's branding apparently prefers). We mostly focused on the ridiculous terms of service (forbidding capital letters among other things), and the fact that it was already kicking people off the system (who only got on the system because Trump's coders apparently failed to properly secure the site pre-launch). We also talked briefly about how it appeared to be a reskin of Mastodon, and that's potentially an interesting legal issue, because it certainly appears to be violating the AGPLv3 license for Mastodon.

But, perhaps a more interesting story right now... is how the grift behind all of this is combining the whole Gamestonk craze and the NFT craze... and the SPAC craze to make absolutely no sense at all.

We had mentioned in passing in the original post that Trump's new company -- Trump Media and Technology Group (TMTG) -- was formed via a reverse merger using a SPAC. Such deals have become a popular sort of backdoor way to take a private company public, though, they're usually combined with some additional private investment (known as a PIPE -- a Private Investment in Public Equity) in order to afford the "takeover" of the private company that is becoming public. SPACs aren't new -- hell we wrote about Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak creating a SPAC back in 2006. But in the last few years, they've been all the rage.

But, Trump's SPAC deal is raising some eyebrows -- or frying some brains. My favorite analysis is the one done by the always excellent Matt Levine at Bloomberg where you can basically hear him tearing his hair out at the absurdity of it all and gradually watch as he comes to terms with the fact that nothing at all matters and it's all nonsense. As Levine notes, the real grift here is that it doesn't matter one bit if Trump has a good business plan for Truth Social or TMTG, because he's going to walk away with tons of cash just from the stock deal.

The point is that if you launch a company with the goal of making it profitable, you have to, like, have a workable business plan and execute on it and deal with a million different operational complexities. If you launch a company with the goal of selling a lot of stock, you have to get people to trust you and give you their money. There is some overlap between those things! But they are different things!

As Levine explains, this whole thing, is kinda like an NFT of Trump. It's a way for Trump fans to throw money at Trump to be part of the Trump brand.

But I think that a more realistic valuation method here is not to worry about cash flows at all — as Trump SPAC clearly does not — and treat the stock simply as a token of public interest in Donald Trump. My guess is that the price of Trump SPAC stock will not, for instance, be much affected by its earnings announcements, unless Trump himself does the earnings calls in which case it will go up no matter what he says. My guess is that the stock will not be particularly correlated with the stocks of other media or technology companies. My guess is that the stock will go up when Trump is on television, or if he announces that he’s running for president again. My guess is that if something bad happens to Trump — if he’s sued or arrested or banned by a new tech company or some new scandal comes out — then that will also make the stock go up, to own the libs or whatever. My guess is that each day that goes by without Trump news, the stock will go down a bit. My guess is that the stock is essentially a bet on Trump’s personal newsiness, on Trump-news volatility.

To be clear I have absolutely no corporate finance basis for these guesses; I don’t think that, like, getting sued for attacking protesters will be good for Trump Thing’s ad revenue or whatever. I don’t have some story of “public interest in Trump increases the expected value of Trump Thing's cash flows so the stock will go up.” I just think that the stock price will have nothing to do with the ad revenue; it will be based entirely on how much attention Trump’s fans are paying to Trump.

And, of course, since Levine wrote that, we've already seen more evidence that this was true. Indeed, as Levine mentioned in his piece, it wouldn't necessarily just be Trumpists buying into DWAC, the stock for the new TMTG, it would also be those assuming that Trumpists would drive the stock up. It didn't take long for WallStreetBets, the Reddit community responsible for the original GameStonks situation to go all in on the stock.

Alex Wilhelm at TechCrunch sums it all up best:

None of this makes sense. Even by the standards of 2021 and the SPAC era, this is all very stupid.

Even Matt Levine seems to be about ready to give everything up:

Doesn’t it feel like there has been a paradigm shift, a regime change? Doesn’t it feel like for the last 80 or so years there has been a dominant view of investing, a first-page-of-the-textbook given, that investments are worth the present value of their expected future cash flows? Doesn’t it feel like that world has ended and a new one has begun? I should go buy some Dogecoin.

It is a silly feeding frenzy, and someone will get left holding the bag. It's unlikely to be Donald Trump, of course. It doesn't appear he's put any of his own money behind any of this. No one really believes that Truth Social or TMTG is a "unicorn" worth billions of dollars. But there's a lot of people chasing the greater fool right now, and it's kind of amusing to watch from the sidelines -- though it won't be surprising when the whole thing comes crashing down.

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Filed Under: donald trump, fundamentals, grift, nfts, reverse merger, social media, spac, stock
Companies: dwac, tmtg, truth social


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  • icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 3:13pm

    it won't be surprising when the whole thing comes crashing down

    And when it does, a lot of people are certainly going to be hurting inside.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 3:38pm

      Re:

      You realize, it's all a Liberal Democrat plot to Hurt The Honest Conservatives, don't you? Even if it was concocted, funded, implemented, and will eventually be ended, by Trumpists.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Stephen T. Stone (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 3:45pm

        Well, then, someone has to take a stand against the evil Democrats⁠—it won’t help to hide when things are this far gone.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 6:33pm

          Re:

          ...evil Democrats⁠

          Probably the most cogent thing you've said all year.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 6:50pm

            Re: Re:

            Oh hey cogent was on my word of the day calendar too! What a coincidence. I mean it's not like you'd just look up a word to make you seem smarter than you actually are, while disingenuously attacking someones point of view because, that's the best thing you have going for you after swallowing a half decade of kool-aid from a bankrupt, former reality star.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Stephen T. Stone (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 6:50pm

            Sorry, brother, but that shit was said in jest, dude. It don’t mean jack, Jack.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 26 Oct 2021 @ 4:32am

            Re: Re:

            Now that you finally got the chance to try out a fancy new word, are you feeling better?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Autrach Sejanoz, 25 Oct 2021 @ 4:48pm

      Re:

      Someone's gotta take a stand - they don't have to hide.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 9:46pm

      Re:

      And when it does, a lot of people are certainly going to be hurting inside.

      You're talking about a demographic who still fervently believe in the sanctity of Jan 6th and that all consequences faced are the result of a wider conspiracy, not because a portion of a particularly idiotic group decided on martyrdom based on the words of a madman.

      When the anvil finally drops, it's going to take another few laps around the first three stages of grief before these knuckledragging mouthbreathers realize something's gone wrong.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 26 Oct 2021 @ 3:43am

        Re: Re:

        "When the anvil finally drops, it's going to take another few laps around the first three stages of grief before these knuckledragging mouthbreathers realize something's gone wrong."

        And then they'll blame the libs. Even if Trump goes on open camera or writes a book about how to run that con, his base will always blame the libs.

        Believed a grifter and now lack your pension funds? All the libs fault.
        Dear Leader asked for your kids school money for a wall? The libs fault your kid is starving.
        Voted for the leopard-eating-faces party? Gosh, that leopard eating your face shore must be a liberal.
        Shot yourself in the crotch? Blame the goddam libs!

        I saw that 66% of republicans want secession and 40% of Biden's voters. Great. Finally an idea both sides can get behind. Let those benighted morons in the anti-vaxxing nurgle cult fuck right off down south where they can worship Dear Leader. Maybe, just maybe at least half of the US will get their shit straight enough so we the rest of the world can once again credit that nation with the sense to pour water out of a boot.

        And the new confederacy can just close borders and quietly rot away undisturbed by fact and reason.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          sumgai (profile), 26 Oct 2021 @ 9:12am

          Re: Re: Re:

          And the new confederacy....

          Yeah, but we get to keep the name of United States of America. They can make up whatever name they want for themselves, but it can't include the words United, States, or America, not in any order. That's a firm line in the sand.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            TaboToka (profile), 26 Oct 2021 @ 11:04am

            Here come the lawyers

            The following terms and marks are trademarks of the United States of America and may not be used without permission:

            United States™
            United States of America™
            USA™
            US of A™
            The States™
            America™
            North America™ (Canada is granted a royalty-free license to
            use this term, subject to limitations)
            Land of Opportunity™
            Home of the Free™
            Land of the Brave™
            Amber waves of grain™
            Purple Mountains Majesty™
            Bald Eagle™
            Eagle™

            Any image, logo, drawing, animation, depiction or video of:

            • a Bald Eagle™,
            • Coyboy™,
            • Longhorn™
            • Red Solo® Cup
            • the Washington and Lincoln monuments,
            • the Vietnam wall and memorial,
            • the MLK memorial,
            • the Statue of Liberty,
            • the St. Louis arch,
            • every building in the New York city skyline, individually and collectively, and
            • the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (because we're emotionally 12 years old)

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              catsmoke (profile), 30 Oct 2021 @ 12:40pm

              Greetings, from the President of the…

              The following terms and marks are trademarks of the United States of America and may not be used without permission:
              United States™

              Is this a good point at which to note that our* neighbor to the south is officially the United States of Mexico?

              *for better or for worse, I am a resident and citizen of the USA

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 26 Oct 2021 @ 3:26pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            America is the generic name for 2+ (geographical) continents. I don't think the US gets to own that, regardless of any stupid confederate wotsit.

            I personally believe they should all colonize the sun, anyway.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Lostinlodos (profile), 27 Oct 2021 @ 2:50am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Except it’s an internationally recognised shortening of United States Of…

              No other state uses, or has used, “America” in official documents as a denom.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 27 Oct 2021 @ 2:01am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            The Confederate Reich of America might be a suitable name for that new union. I say let them. But wall the damn thing in afterwards. Hell, I'm sure Mexico will actually pay for a wall in that case.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      catsmoke (profile), 30 Oct 2021 @ 12:35pm

      “a lot of people” with little brainpower

      when it [comes crashing down], a lot of people are certainly going to be hurting inside.

      You assume that these people are rational, realistic, and capable of accurate self-reflection.

      Alas, for they are not.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 3:14pm

    The art of the deal, is to not be the last one holding all the stock.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    shared_prophet (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 3:16pm

    Until I come across a better option, in my head TMTG will stand for They Might Trip Giants.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    It's Man, 25 Oct 2021 @ 3:30pm

    "Its Breaking Experts' Brains"

    It's

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 3:36pm

    Paywalled?

    where you can basically hear him tearing his hair out at the absurdity of it all … "The point is that if you launch a company with the goal of making it profitable, you have to, like, have a workable business plan and execute on it and deal with a million different operational complexities. If you launch a company with the goal of selling a lot of stock, you have to get people to trust you and give you their money. There is some overlap between those things! But they are different things!"

    Well, I can't hear him, because the "article" is only one paragraph long, ending at "there would be some real financial risk to it." I'd suspect some kind of paywall, but there's no evidence of such—the page footer comes right after that, with no request for money or a login.

    I was assuming Matt had just been half-assing these articles for a while, though Mike's text suggests otherwise. Does anyone have a link that shows the whole thing?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    crinisen (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 3:43pm

    Investing in a divide-by-zero-problem

    Here you're investing in the infinite supply of Stupid™ but the supply-demand curve jumped the divide-by-zero shark, and now, somehow making more available Stupid™ causing the demand for more Stupid™. Thus this is obviously the most genius investment plan ever as it is obviously a perpetual money (and Stupid™) making scheme!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Miles (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 4:01pm

    It's morally wrong to allow a fool to keep his money.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 4:07pm

    One the one hand this is typical evil Donald at play and is truly disgusting.

    On the other hand, it's removing free cash from the hands of idiots, thus reducing their ability to do damage.

    Hard to say whether this is a good or a bad thing, on balance.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 4:09pm

      it's removing free cash from the hands of idiots, thus reducing their ability to do damage

      But that’s putting that cash in the hands of more powerful idiots who still have the ability to do lots of damage.

      Not really a good tradeoff there.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 7:24pm

      Re:

      Seems more like taking money from people with no power (Trump supporters) and pooling it for someone truly evil with actual power to use (Trump or anyone politically affiliated with him).

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ryunosuke (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 4:18pm

    Alex Wilhelm at TechCrunch sums it all up best:

    None of this makes sense. Even by the standards of 2021 and the SPAC era, this > is all very stupid.

    Alex Wilhelm is heard screaming... A Wilhelm Scream if you will.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 26 Oct 2021 @ 4:19am

      Re:

      The described reality does conjure the vision of some hapless victim falling into a river filled with crocodiles or into a yawning abyss on the death star, doesn't it?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Pixelation, 25 Oct 2021 @ 4:19pm

    C'mon

    We all know this is just Fake News!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 4:25pm

    People are buying meme stocks , nfts, eg I own this image cos my name is on a block chain, at this point I makes sense for rich people to buy a spac based on trump as he has given them billions in tax credits
    Meanwhile low paid workers pay 30 per tax rates
    While billionaires pay maybe 1 per cent tax
    Like big company's telecoms donate to Politicans and literally write the bills to stop municipal local broadband networks being setup
    Or you might say the stock market and nfts are not really based on reality prospective earnings etc
    People buying nfts makes no sense since any image online can be copied

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 4:35pm

    Trump and money laundering are match made in your preferred fictional afterlife.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 4:46pm

    Between this, NFTs being shoved down our throats everywhere we go (with Twitter seemingly joining in soon), and Web3 turning from promising decentralization into “Everything has to be on the blockchain and be boosting tokens”, I’m not confident in the future of the Internet anymore.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 5:10pm

      Re:

      There were hanger-ons, con artists, and dumbasses pushing fads, buzzwords, and gimmicks with no understanding since at least the 90s. It isn't an existential threat to the internet - just an area to keep a tech career away from the inevitable crash.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 5:21pm

        Re: Re:

        Tech-literate orgs like Fight For The Future and EFF have already drunk the cryptoshit Kool-Aid. These orgs as well as tech corps such as Twitter and Reddit seem intent on making sure that pyramid schemes like NFTs and cryptocurrency serve as a core facet of the Internet going forward, and that there’s nowhere convenient for people to go if they don’t want a part of that garbage.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 7:27pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          While I'm pretty sure Valve's motivations were entirely self serving I still like that they're kicking games that let you earn crypto off Steam. There's already an absurd level of P2P scamming, they don't need kids inadvertently mining crypto for some Ukrainian company too.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 6:53pm

      Re:

      Trump has given "NFT" a new meaning. No longer non-fungible token, now non-functional token.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Beefcake (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 5:06pm

    It’s the best one can hope for

    from a capital-free business model.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 5:47pm

    Not in a million years would I ever do business with DJT. I can't imagine any scenario, ever, where it works out. You'll end up doing all the work, taking all of the risk, and he and the kids will literally not do a damn thing.

    I wouldn't even let him or any of his kids run a sandwich shop.

    Yet, here they are, about to rake in tons of money and, well, many a fool and their money is soon to be parted.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 6:56pm

      Re:

      You forgot that he'll declare bankruptcy and you won't get paid for your labor and risk taking.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 26 Oct 2021 @ 5:21am

      Re:

      "Yet, here they are, about to rake in tons of money and, well, many a fool and their money is soon to be parted."

      Shock and Horror. You mean to imply Dear Leader would treat a body wrong? You need to watch those words, kind sir, for 90 million americans will confront you in ire for impugning the honor of The Donald. If you can make them realize what "impugn" means, that is.

      Honestly, for my part I'm less confused about a grifter pulling the P.T. Barnum job. There's always been that one born every minute. What does confuse me - still - is that the amount of lackwit yokels make up a solid 20-30% of the american citizenry.

      And that is the wallet base #45 taps into. He'll be raking it in big until he finally overreaches and has to flee the country, at which point no doubt he'll stand as martyred president-in-exile to the benighted morons in his cult...until the GOP manages to cough up a new strongman to lead the daily 2 minute hate chant.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    sumgai (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 7:00pm

    The real damage is coming, just not so soon....

    While the SEC will eventually get around to scrutinizing what is sure to make Bonfire Of The Vanities look like a grade school prank, it will take time. Meanwhile, #45 and company are not paying the IRS what they should be paying, because the moment he touches any kind of perceived profit (he won't be able to say he's recovering his initial investment, right?), he's on the hook, plain and simple. But we can damn well guess with 101% certainly just how much he'll willing give up, eh?

    So he's sitting on a fuck-ton of cash, now what? Well, who gave him all that money, via the word "investment"? Easy - Dumbasses Are Us™ .

    But here's the thing. These so-called "investors" (who are going to go down in history as giving day-traders a good name) are going to claim that they lost money on that investment, and their tax picture is going to look a little bit more rosy, come next April. So now we have a double whammy - Trump is keeping his money out of the IRS's hands, Joe Bleaux is legitimately claiming a loss, so there's money not going in the government coffers, and the country as a whole comes up short. Next thing you know, Congress and the President are having to raise taxes to cover that shortfall. Uncle Sam figuratively comes knocking on your door with hat in one hand and his other stretched out with the palm up.

    Remember those 3rd grade dropouts who can't count to 11 without unzipping their pants? Yeah, I'm talking about the Dumbasses Are Us™ crowd. Well, our Uncle is gonna be knocking at their door too. Now, overall, just how much did they save by claiming a loss??

    Now you know why I have such a hard time getting through life - it's not that I don't tolerate stupidity, it's that I"m not afraid to tell people that my favorite quote is "It's too bad that ignorance isn't painful!"

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 25 Oct 2021 @ 7:55pm

      Stupidity is painful, just for other people

      "It's too bad that ignorance isn't painful!"

      The problem isn't that stupidity isn't painful, the problem is that it is but the suffering is more often than not felt by those around the idiot more than by the idiot.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Oct 2021 @ 7:59pm

      Re: The real damage is coming, just not so soon....

      You're treating stupidity and ignorance as if they're the same thing. They're not. While ignorant people can (and often do) do stupid things, remember that you're stuck with stupidity, but ignorance can be cured.

      Unfortunately, here we're looking at willful ignorance, and I'm not so sure that that can be cured.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      sumgai (profile), 26 Oct 2021 @ 8:58am

      Re: The real damage is coming, just not so soon....

      Actually TOG and AC, the only time I used "stupid" is in the last sentence, which is a statement of my personal sentiments. Perhaps I should have used a synonym, but the net effect is the same - I don't easily hold my tongue when I'm exposed to massive dumbass-ness. But other than that, I used "dumbass" instead of stupid, because it's a term that we all understand, in the generic sense.

      And as to the pain felt, I agree. The reason for my statement is that obviously better educated folks do feel the pain, but the ignorant don't feel much of anything, it just slides right off of them, and they're happier than pigs in slop. Hence the quote, though I don't know who said it first.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Arijirijia, 25 Oct 2021 @ 8:28pm

    Usual Trump behaviour

    Fraud as Social, Financial and Political policy.

    Really nothing to see here, unless you're in Law Enforcement and care enough about white collar crime ... to actually do anything about it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Bloof (profile), 26 Oct 2021 @ 3:45am

    A lot of Americans will wake up someday, clutching their worthless TRUMPR stock, gold plated coins and Iraqi dinars realising how they've been cheated and by who. Hopefully that happens before they've completely destroyed the western world and installed a fascist royalty they're in no position to remove.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Bilvin Spicklittle, 26 Oct 2021 @ 8:56am

    We live in a world where it is impossible to invest anymore.

    Investment opportunities are finite. Sure, they expand as the years roll by, people invent new things and develop new services... but at any given point in time, there is a maximum amount of investment opportunity.

    Whatever that amount happens to be today, it is also true that there are far more dollars out there chasing the opportunities. If there are $10 trillion worth of opportunities, and $20 trillion dollars to be invested, what do the other $10 trillion do? We've all been indoctrinated that only crazy hoarders would take their money and stuff it under the mattress Great Depression style. We've all been educated that even if that wasn't crazy, inflation just eats away at the money until it is worth nothing.

    So that extra $10 trillion, it gets invested in crackpot schemes. It is used to speculate on cryptocurrencies. To fund startups that will go nowhere. Hell, one way or another it ends up getting loaned to AT&T to buy the 1990s-solution to television-on-demand at the bargain price of $50 billion or whatever (though, if you were smart, you invested in the banks doing the loan to AT&T, and not to AT&T).

    And, this money is distributed (not evenly though), so at the low end you get people opening 30% more restaurants than local economies can really support (let alone at the living wage rates that people are starting to demand). Most of those investments implode too.

    Worse still, the rate of "money to invest" is growing at a faster rate than that of "things to invest in".

    People will have to invent new cons and scams just to siphon away all this excess cash. In that context, Trump is truly an innovator.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 26 Oct 2021 @ 10:19am

    The special purpose acquisition company that plans to take former President Donald Trump’s media venture public is now the target of short-seller Iceberg Research — despite the stock’s huge rally last week.

    Or rather: because

    https://nypost.com/2021/10/26/trump-spac-targeted-by-iceberg-research-after-massive-rally/

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 26 Oct 2021 @ 10:45am

      Re:

      Time to own the libs with a short squeeze, eh? Matt Levine's excellent article all started with Gamestonk to begin with.

      We should seriously consider that the total global GDP might rise 10,000% due to appreciation of Trump's stock over the next six months.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Thad (profile), 26 Oct 2021 @ 11:46am

    Almost as if the investment business isn't actually based on rational decisions and is just the socially-respectable equivalent of a trip to the casino.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Lostinlodos (profile), 26 Oct 2021 @ 1:10pm

    The foundation of stocks

    There’s another side to stocks. It’s called company control.

    Not everyone buys stock to invest, eg money.
    Some of us just look to support a company.
    Or have a voice in direction.

    It’s not always about the money. That’s what really ticks off wall-street. That the people are involved again.

    I have stock. A dozen shares her, half dozen there. Few hundred, or thousand shares in some “penny” companies.

    I don’t invest to make money. I invest to drive a product or service.
    I have no interest here but I can easily see how some Trump fans can jump.
    .
    Some of my tech stock is unlikely to ever match inflation. But it gives me input into small companies that have targeted demographics.

    In the end, there’s nothing wrong with buying into something you support.
    Be it one vote in a million, or one out of 10, or 500 out of 10,000.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 26 Oct 2021 @ 2:50pm

      Re: The foundation of stocks

      For some people it's not about money!? I think you just gave Wall Street a heart attack.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 27 Oct 2021 @ 2:30am

        Re: Re: The foundation of stocks

        Well yeah. The official version of this is called "trusts".

        Alas Wall street knows damn well how to put a price tag on that as well. They only get heart attacks when people for some odd reason or other decide to play the same game, as with Gamestop.

        After all, if a cadre of brokers have a good thing going manipulating the price of overvalued stock it's really like pissing in their cheetos when some facebook, reddit or twitter group decides to indulge in the same type of manipulation, to their great detriment.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Lostinlodos (profile), 27 Oct 2021 @ 3:33am

          Re: Re: Re: The foundation of stocks

          Damn fucking straight!

          I own enough shares of AMD and WWE to make a difference in my votes.
          Not to get rich but to guide the product. I “own” 15% of a DFS, a crypto company. Not to get rich but to help guide what does and does not get added to tradable commodities.

          I own 45% of a company who’s sole product is an AI for entertainment recommendations.
          Financially I’ve “lost” more than 2/3 of my investment. But it is one of the most used and widely deployed methods world wide.

          What Wall Street is facing is people returning to the entire base premise of stock holdings.
          Guiding a company on a preferred direction, the hope of profitability being secondary.
          What scares them the most is companies like AMD, Taste, Umbrella, companies who’s only requirement is break even. Companies where profits are secondary to product satisfaction.

          I’ve been a board member at Sega twice.
          If fought to push the Universe a dozen times as an FU to the industry. Not because it would make money: it won’t. But because it would totally destroy the profits first mentality of the industry. Bring it back to games.

          The media paints GameStop as an attack. That’s a steaming heap of shite. A bubble perspective of fake news.
          Regardless of where it went GameStop started as the consumer middle finger to an industry that forgot it needs the consumer to buy the product.
          GameStop was a dedicated response to the all-digital movement. disclosure: I owned GameStop shares before the internet revolution and own the same number of shares today. I am also a former employee of GS, EB, And FuncoLand.

          After a decade of short sales and pushing companies into death, the people are fighting back. Private trade systems have returned the power to the users. And they are using that power. Crypto holdings investment has rocked WS even further as they now complete with over-night millionaires.

          This isn’t criminal! It’s not manipulation, or insider, or fraud. It’s the public taking an interest in guiding the companies they life. To hell with what AS wants.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 28 Oct 2021 @ 4:20am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: The foundation of stocks

            "The media paints GameStop as an attack. That’s a steaming heap of shite. A bubble perspective of fake news. "

            Well, I wouldn't call it completely "fake". I'm pretty convinced there was a lot of spite in the reddit-mediated backlash play.

            "Regardless of where it went GameStop started as the consumer middle finger to an industry that forgot it needs the consumer to buy the product. "

            Whoa there, Kemo Sabe, the "industry" which got hurt certainly does not need the consumer. Because that industry isn't about products and services but about shuffling money around in a game of texas hold'em with the deck sufficiently well marked so as to hopefully guarantee a payoff for the major players.
            And the damage done was simply due to a new player coming in and removing the markings on the deck mid play, causing those major players to lose a lot of money. Most of which they had taken as loans which in turn affected those lending them the stake. The domino effect causing a lot of zeroes to vanish from quite a few ledgers.

            What I find more interesting is the concept that so much more "money" could evaporate than was actually invested from any side. It's almost as if much of it was derived from calculating losses against expected rather than real returns.

            It's almost as if the "free market" of the west these days has less to do with Adam Smith's ideas of capitalism than it does with P.T. Barnum's ideas of showmanship.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Lostinlodos (profile), 28 Oct 2021 @ 10:39am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The foundation of stocks

              By “industry” I refer to the game industry. That has slowly moved from supplying games to our-in-the-sky futures.

              Game stop is the last beacon of first-sale doctrine. We’ve moved to the point where the gamers get screwed at the whims of an investment board. Where a company fists off a game and then uses the DMCA to stop gamers from playing.

              I don’t know what the cause was at the very beginning. But it ballooned. Sites like Game News, Mega Games, GameFAQs. Sites like AV Forums and Video Help.
              Whatever it started as, became a cause of action against the game industry.

              This was the ultimate video game plot. People mad at the stock market/investors. People mad at the game industry. People mad at the MAFIAA. A perfect storm of rebellion against getting screwed.

              As far as the base story goes, as little as I understand it: anyone who invests based on a company’s failure, who puts money against a company, as pure evil.
              That is so far and away from the original point of holding shares in a company that its beyond outright disgusting. It’s evil.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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