Links – 10/04/07

Think like buffet 20 (zenpersonalfinance)

In explaining Berkshire’s “super cat” insurance policies, which pay out for major catastrophes such as earthquakes and which Berkshire is one of the few companies able to put up the kind of money necessary to actually pay out when such a disaster occurs, Buffett offers reassurance in his usual colorful way: …we try to “reverse engineer” our future at Berkshire, bearing in mind Charlie’s dictum: “All I want to know is where I’m going to die so I’ll never go there.”

Realtors boom(polliticalcalculations)

In fact, we only see the effects of just two recessions showing up as sharp declines in the number of Realtors® over the history of the organization since it was founded in 1908: 1980-1982 and 1990-1991. Meanwhile, we didn’t see any surges in membership occurring when the U.S. economy was booming or when interest rates were especially low (such as in the 1960s.) What we found instead is that the number of Realtors® grew at largely stable rates from year-to-year with some really remarkable surges in growth (1975-1980, 2001-2006). So something else would seem to be driving the growth in the number of realtors over time.

Sell up and start again (CNN)

Lisa Perry wants a fresh start. So she’s decided to sell nearly all of her belongings in one massive auction on eBay. Perry, 45, said the top bidder in the auction, ending Thursday, will get more than 300 items — including snowshoes, a futon, a bed, a Village People album, seashells and more.

6 Creative ways to make money(Fiscalmusings)

I’ve been thinking quite a bit lately about different ways to make money. I’ve talked before about the two ways to increase your free cash flow. There’s a lot of information out there about different ways to decrease your expenses. It’s a little more difficult to find ways to increase your income or at least add to it every now and then.

Subprime contagion(bloomberg)

American Home Mortgage Investment Corp. shares fell 15 percent after the company’s loans attracted few bids from investors, fueling concern that losses at subprime lenders are spreading to higher-rated credits.

Out of the box thinking(independent)

But there is a chink of light on the horizon: an intelligent economic idea which may achieve far more in terms of pacifying the country than extra bombs and bullets. Western governments should buy the poppy crops from the farmers, thereby undermining support for the Taliban and removing the main flow of opium to Europe at a stroke – and at a tiny fraction of the cost of the operations currently planned.

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