The Evil Diaries: Ashley Madison, North Korea, the Euro and Mitie

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The Evil Diaries: Ashley Madison, North Korea, the Euro and Mitie

It now transpires that a large number of the email addresses and profiles hacked at Ashley Madison, preparatory to a blackmail campaign, have turned out to be fake. There are two points arising: (i) it’s hard to blackmail somebody who does not feel threatened; and (ii) the flotation of Avid Life Media would be looking pretty sick by now. The joke is more developed than that at Cupid plc since subscribers there often, although deceived, meant well whereas those at Ashley Madison/AVM were arguably responding to a request to deceive. It is with that background that all this blather (The Times ran the headline of “37m adulterers……” which is quite a claim if all subscribers are thus to be categorised) becomes rather silly and certainly not floatable.

The tubby youth who runs North Korea is so barmy that it is hard to work out his threats, so ostensibly fatuous are they. But the announcement this morning at about 5.00 a.m. that there was the possibility of conflict, “80,000 American troops”, seemed pretty improbable to me such that I sold my long gold position at $1,131. I hit a spike but intend to return.

In the meantime EUR/USD is with USD as is GBP/USD. I am always prepared to bet against EUR since the Eurozone strikes me as a silly joke. But I note the possibility that the EUR might transmogrify into the Deutschmark (Mark 2). This seems the practical way to go as the individual national requirements reassert. If so, shorters of EUR are going to get burnt. Still, all right-thinking gamblers are going for EUR/USD parity by December 2015.

Finally, it has been a longstanding laugh that the annual Guardian businesswoman of the year award is a clear signal to short her stock. However, the position is less clear in the peerages classification department of debunking. Here I am thinking of Ruby McGregor-Smith, the hardwoman at Mitie (MTO). She is picking up a damehood. Peerages to business persons have often been awarded after cash payments by the business person to the ruling party. But, as far as I am aware, Ruby has not done anything of the sort. Indeed, as far as I am aware, she could not. So what has Ruby done? Still, Mitie remains a short at 290p.

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