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Ecuador Export Tour Update


Here is an Ecuador export tour update that continues our thread on ways to earn globally with small international businesses.

Ecuador-export-tours Our Ecuador export tours visit many Ecuador markets… textiles in Cotacachi and weavings in Peguche, leather in Cotacachi… wood carving in San Antonio de Ibarra. Here is our last group arriving in Otavalo.

This update is provided by Maggie Beesley, a former Ecuador export attendee who now exports regularly from Ecuador.  She will conduct the July 4 Ecuador Export Tour:

Hi Everyone!!!

How many of you are packed?  I stay packed.  July 3rd is right around the corner.  Pack smart, bring a larger suitcase than you need, and be prepared to buy another big one ($8) to get all your treasures home.  We are already saving, aren’t we?

Yesterday, my husband and I returned from Puerto Rico and let me tell you about the prices there!  Wow!  Maybe we should all be taking our treasures to Puerto Rico to sell.  I saw so many things we are going to see in Ecuador and were they ever expensive in Puerto Rico!

Now on to our Import/Export adventures.  On one of our days together (July 8) we’ll visit the town of Otavalo and the market there.  This market is the largest indigenous market in all of South America.  The reason we are going on Wednesday is…not as many shoppers and much better prices than on a Saturday.  We like those better prices, don’t we?  While in Puerto Rico I saw a summer cape which I have bought all over Ecuador for $10.00.  In Puerto Rico, also at a market, that same type of cape was $42.00, and it was not near as pretty as the ones we are going to see in Otavalo.  Do you see the profit there?

I also just finished going through my latest Coldwater Creek Catalog, where they are having a 50% off sale and have some gorgeous earrings on sale now for $35.00 to $40.00.  Folks we are going to see much prettier ones for $5.00 and maybe up to $10.00, plus no sales tax or shipping charges.  The same is true for necklaces, scarves, and purses.  Buy that extra bag in Ecuador for $8.00, which I also saw in Puerto Rico for $40.00 to get home in and more and more of the wonderful savings.

Another day we are going to the Village of Peguche, which is the Village of the Weavers.  There are three things we will want to do in Peguche.

First, we will want to visit El Condor where people will be weaving as we watch a weaving exhibition.

ecuador-export-tour

Weaving at El Condor.

If you have never seen anyone weave on a wooden loom, it is fascinating, very complicated, and can take many days to complete a blanket, or a cape.  A lot of work!  How the people sit there and do this craft for hours on end is beyond me, but they do and the weaving is gorgeous.   Did I mention, the weaving is done with their hands for the pattern and the tightness of the weave is controlled with their feet?  No electricity here, just the rhythm ….clickity-clack,  clickity-clack…which is the sound you hear throughout the village.  We’ll also experience how the natural dyes are made including Cochineal, the rich wine color that only the emperors had in ages past.  (A little secret it is made from crushed up cactus bugs!)

Also in Peguche is an artist, Jose Cotacachi, who does wall hangings.  He exports to the United States and is shown in very high end stores at very high end prices.  You too can do this.  His work is breath taking, and the detail, well you will see what I mean. These sell to high in art galleries also.  Very easy to pack, just roll up your purchases and put them in that extra bag you bought.   Jose will ship to the U.S., but it is much cheaper to buy that $8.00 bag and do it yourself.   Jose actually has three different workshops in Peguche, and we will visit them all.

ecuador-export-tour

Jose Cotacachi at his loom.

ecuador-export-tour

He loves his work.

Depending on time, we’ll determine the next thing we do, so I am just keeping it a secret.  I don’t want to rush anyone in this town.  Every time we go to Peguche, people always want to go back.  I hear too many times, “I wish I had bought that, or I didn’t see that one”.  So on this trip, we are going to try and see it all.

We will go to San Antonio de Ibarra, the Wood Carving town. One of the stores in San Antonio does gold leaf on statues…Some of these statues go to very important places in Europe and it can take a year or more to complete one statue.  Also, one small woodcarver studio (dirt floor) hosts those direct from the Louvre in Paris…bringing pics of their treasures to be copied!

Ecuador-exports

Master Carver Marco Lopez.

Many of the towns in Ecuador are known for a particular craftsmanship. We will be in the heart of the Crafts Trail, just minutes away from the major markets.  Otavalo is the Indigenous Market town, Peguche is the Weaving town, Cotacachi the Leather town and San Antonio is the Wood Carving town. The particular talent… skill of each town is handed down generation to generation, family to family. Should a future generation of young people decide to leave the town and do something completely different the skill could be lost forever.  You know it is going to happen, that is why all the things we see are so precious.

Our first complete day in Cotacachi we are going to meet Roberto the man who grows and exports those wonderful Ecuadorian roses to so many of you in the United States. You have seen the roses in Gary’s emails.  Roberto is going to tell us how to get them, and how to have your own Export business with roses.  (Some past attendees of this course have done quite well selling roses direct from the source.  And, a big thing, Roberto’s roses are all from green plantations…your wedding clients will love this.  We will also be working the entire Leather Street (ArtePiel), which is only a three block stroll from El Meson.  So many stores, both sides of the street, and all just a little bit different.  There is also a small outdoor market we will visit in Cotacachi where I have gotten some great leather items.  This is going to be a “get outside in the sunshine day”, do some walking do some looking, and do some buying.

For all you guys coming along, one of the first stores we will visit is where you get those fabulous leather jackets and coats.  The secret word in this store is…”I know Micky”, or “Micky sent me” which could bring about that extra discount we all want.  I believe Micky will actually be in Cotacachi while we are there so we will all get to meet her and here about her businesses in Florida all from products bought in Ecuador.

To add to your packing list ….things to be sure and bring with you to Ecuador…
Comfortable walking shoes
Sunglasses
Sun protection
Sun hat
and not to be forgotten, your ATM Card!

Do not bring Travelers’ checks, or any checks like that. Do not bring $100 bills (hard to cash).   Cash works, and remember they use our dollar, so there is no converting to another currency!  (This is another great surprise and help…no need to worry about currency fluctuations!)

See you all in July.  Happy traveling!

Maggie

Ecuador-export-tours Our tours show how to earn income globally but are not all business.  Our last group took time to visit Otavalo’s main square and…

Ecuador-export-tours

the Otavalo Cathedral where we…

Ecuador-export-tours

visited and…

Ecuador-export-tours

remembered the riches… plus…

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met a man who reminded us that when we do business globally we do more than just make money for ourselves.

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International trade in native crafts helps enrich everyone.

We hope to share this opportunity with you.

Gary

We hope you’ll join us to learn more business and investing opportunities globally as well as Ecuador.

July 4-8 Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

Cotacachi Hotel Savings


Gain Cotacachi hotel savings and more… up to $343 in only one week in Ecuador.

I explain below. First let me introduce one of the nicest small Ecuador hotels in Ecuador. This small hotel (15 rooms) is in Cotacachi… Meson de las Flores.

Ecuador Living subscribers are entitled to one free night  the first time they visit  Cotacachi and stay three nights  or more at Meson de las Flores.  There are many other hotels where you gain discounts as a subcriber… which I explain below.

First more on Meson de las flores in Cotacachi.

There are many charming reasons to stay at Meson de las Flores.

The colonial  architecture charms and welcomes you.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

Other Meson de las Flores  hotel amenities include:

  • Free broadband internet..
  • Free calls to the USA, Canada and Europe.
  • Free served breakfast.

Plus a warm, welcoming, caring staff who really do want to look after you.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

Room rates at Meson de las Flores in Cotacachi are only $59 a night plus 22% service and tax.

Enjoy the beauty of Cotacachi.  Here is the Cotacachi Cathedral next door to Meson de las Flores by night.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

By day.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

Save $343 or more at small Ecuador hotels as an Ecuador Living subscriber in just a week.

To assist those interested in Ecuador,  Ecuador Living has established a full time full support research and assistance team to help Ecuador Living subscribers in any way required.

One benefit is hotel savings in Quito, Cotacachi, Cuenca and on the coast.

For example if you stay three days at Meson de las Flores in Cotacachi, one night is free ($79 savings).  If you stay two nights at Palmazul, one night is free ($142) and two nights at Hotel Quito, you save $122 with the discount Ecuador Living subscribers get  there.  That’s a $343 saving compared to you Ecuador Living subscription of $119.

You can subscribe to Ecuador Living here.

Meson de las Flores has a central location in Cotacachi…

cotacachi-hotel

All rooms are above the open air courtyard.

cotacachi-hotel

A three room suite is avialable on the third floor.  See it at Cotacachi Hotel Suite.

The hotel serves breakfast lunch and dinner in the opebn air courtyard and…

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dining room.

cotacachi-hotel

Full seminar and AV facilities are available. Here are delagtes meeting at a seminar conducted in Cotacachi at Meson de las Flores and the ajoing Cotacachi Cultural Museum.

cotacachi-hotel

Merri, I and the staff of Meson de las flores welcome you!

cotacachi-hotel

Left to right:  Gary, Meson mascot Ma, Maurico-translator – night clerk and guide, Eduardo – Maitre d , Franklin – Manager, Alberto – sous chef, Merri, Rosita – room care giver, Consuelo – food server, Rosita Molena- room care giver and Santiago – Chef.

Gary

Here is an Ecuador tours update for  Gary Scott’s 2009 Ecuador information tours, courses and seminars conducted at meson de las Flores and Palmazul spa.

He is a view of the Cotacachi sunrise from our suite at hotel Meson de las Flores.

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We hope you’ll enjoy Ecuador’s beauty with us soon.

July 4-8 Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course
Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador
Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

Brazil Multi Currency Opportunity


See how my multi currency course subscribers have been able to gain up to 50% in Brazil during 2009.

Many readers at this site know me best as Mr. Ecuador.  However recently some of our subscribers have enjoyed the biggest profits as multi currency investors in Brazil.

Though Merri and I have been investing, living and working in Ecuador for over a dozen years now, our greatest expertise is as multi currency investors as we are in our 41st year.

See below how multi currency investing brought us to Ecuador and how your interest in Ecuador can now bring you a free subscription to our multi currency course as I present a survivors guide to currency and market turmoil.

Those interested in Ecuador do not have to change currencies when they travel here because Ecuador’s currency is the US dollar.

This means they need to learn how to make your money go up as the US dollar and stock markets go up and down…

The US dollar has fallen… badly against major currencies like the yen, euro and Swiss franc for 37 years.  You can see this long term, steady decline of the US dollar in this chart from Grandfather.com.

multi-currency-debt

One reason for this fall is the growing debt in the USA.

Now this debt is even worse. Here is a picture from USA Today that shows how the US public debt  has just grown 12%.

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Even minor currencies such as the Colombian peso, and Brazilian real have risen steadily versus the US dollar… 25%, 50% since the early 2000s and more.

Until.. in 2008, the greenback suddenly zoomed up… as stock markets collapsed around the world. Now the dollar is falling again.

Sideways motion like this destroys most investors.

Yet there is a way to earn even in these worst times…by learning how to spot value…that turns turmoil and currency shifts into profit.

This is not just a problem for Americans either. The dollar’s downfall affects currencies all over the world and creates global economic turmoil. For the modern economy to operate in its current fashion some reserve currency is required.

Yet what currency would you choose…the Chinese yuan…the euro…gold, oil? Would you trust your life savings to speculate on that?

Of three things we can be sure.

First, The US dollar will fall more…much more.

Second, there will be confusion. Many…in fact most uninformed investors will lose…a lot.

Third there will be inflation…worldwide due to the excessive spending in the current global financial bailout.

Smart investors who know how to spot value in multi currency portfolios at some of the world’s safest banks have already earned 57%…120% …263% so even with the doom and gloom, they are still ahead.

More important these same investors have learned how to survive through turmoil.

My name is Gary Scott. I have been writing and publishing information about the falling greenback and how to earn from it though international investing for over forty years (since May 1968 to be exact).

Fortunately I stumbled across multi currency investing at an early stage and wrote a book about this clear back in the 1970s when the US dollar was first beginning to erode.

Since that time my books and reports have helped hundreds of thousands of investors find hot areas of value in every decade.

In the 1970s we helped our readers  find investments in gold & silver as well as investments  in the currencies of Japan, Germany, Switzerland, England, Australia and Hong Kong.

In the 1980s, the Tigers, Taiwan, Singapore Malaysia and South Korea, & Turkey were the places where our readers gained value.

The 1990s saw South America (which led me to Ecuador) as the place to invest.

The early 2000s offered great value in China, India and Eastern Europe.

We have helped readers find good value real estate throughout this time, first in Hong Kong, then London, Switzerland,  Isle of Man, Dominican Republic and now Ecuador as well as in Small Town USA.

We have also helped readers bet against the US dollar throughout these decades which as the chart above shows has worked well.

Finally in the early 200os we began helping readers find good value green investments.

I would like to offer you a valuable real time emailed course that teaches how to invest in multi currency portfolios plus how to sometimes use leverage in these portfolios to create extra profits.

Sleepy Safe Portfolios Can Earn Over 100% Per Year

Multi currency investing does not require any fast trading techniques.  Multi currency portfolios are normally slow and sleepy investments…not currency contracts or futures speculations.  Most multi currency positions are aimed with a five year horizon…pretty sleepy compared to people who trade currencies (an entirely different and far riskier technique).  For most of us, slow and sleepy means SAFE!

Yet multi currency portfolios can be really profitable as well.

How sleepy and how safe?

Let’s look first at sleepy.

In 2006 we created an Asian multi currency portfolio consisting of just five award winning mutual funds.

We did not touch the entire portfolio for an entire year. Then after one year we made just five changes…dropping two mutual funds and adding three other mutual funds. Then we did not make another single change. That’s pretty sleepy, choosing a handful of mutual funds and making only five changes in two years.

How safe?

The portfolio was chosen with the help of one of the world’s safest banks and the mutual funds were held at that bank at all times.

Okay. Here is the big question. How profitable?

In the first year (2006) this portfolio rose 114.16%. Then we made the five changes mentioned (two funds dropped and three added). In 2007 this portfolio rose 122.62%. 2008 was a disaster year which we will look at in a moment.  But when your portfolio is over 200% in two years, it takes a lot of disaster to lose.

Suppose we get more specific.

That safe bank is a Danish bank. That’s good because in recent years Denmark has been rated by Standard & Poor’s as one of the safest country in the world in which to bank

The bank is Jyske Bank…well established with a history of over 100 years. Jyske is Denmark ’s second largest bank, with 450,000 clients in Denmark and over 30,000 abroad.

Jyske Bank has over 23 billion euros in assets and also happens to be one of the leading currency traders in the world. The Danes have always been big currency traders because as a small naval country surrounded by England, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Germany, Norway and other countries…they have always had to deal in many currencies.

This historically gained expertise means that unlike most banks (that trade only eight hours a day) Jyske maintains a 24 hour global currency and commodity dealer service. Many other large banks use Jyske to handle their off hour currency positions. This means that Jyske is huge when it comes to multi currency activity. In fact their turnover reaches $50 billion dollars a day.

Let’s address this issue of safety in more detail. Normally this is a pretty moot point. Right now everyone is concerned. Is a bank safe or not? I like Jyske from a bank safety point of view because there are three bank safety points, from the top down.

Bank Safety Point #1: A recent Yahoo Canada article shows a survey by the World Economic Forum listed five safest countries in which to bank.

Canada
Sweden
Luxembourg
Australia
Denmark

So Denmark is a safe place to bank. Now let’s look at Jyske Bank’s safety rating.

Bank Safety Point #2: Jyske Bank is Denmark’s second largest bank.
On October 10 2008, Moody’s affirmed Jyske Bank’s long-term Aa2 rating stable rating. This decision came despite the deteriorated economic prospects in Denmark, particularly in respect of the property market.

Bank Safety Point #3: Also on Friday 10 October 2008, the Danish Parliament passed a bill that secured all deposits and unsecured claims against losses in Danish financial institutions.
The rating of the Kingdom of Denmark is Aaa/AAA with Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s respectively.

That’s safe!

I happen to know Jyske Bank because I began using them (as my bank) over 20 years ago. They are one of the few banks that offers a special multi currency portfolio service for investors from almost anywhere in the world.

I was one of the first writers and publishers to begin writing about multi currency investing. Jyske bank was one of the first banks to offer a multi currency portfolio service…and they were my bank.

Not surprising we got together and have created a strategic alliance that can help you learn how to create multi currency portfolios that suit you.

My multi currency course helps readers learn how to find good value and develop multi currency portfolios that suit their specific circumstances.

Before I explain how you can use this course, let’s look at both the up and down side of these high performing portfolios?

The course provides two levels of education. Part one gives readers an extensive beginner’s guide to developing multi currency portfolios.

Part two is unusual and neat.  Part two educates in real time. We create multi currency portfolios and track them real time.  The education comes from dissecting and discussing the portfolio results.  This is a totally novel way to learn…real time from real portfolios created by some of the best investment managers in the world as these portfolios rise or fall in the market place…in the here and now.

Jyske Bank assists by providing all the portfolio details.   Our symbiotic relationship allows me to combine my experience with this bank’s incredible knowledge, real time capability and expertise so course subscribers can learn in a most practical way from some of the greatest multi currency experts in the world.

Here is our educational performance over the past few years.

We created five portfolios for educational purposes on November 1, 2005. One of the five multi currency portfolios was the Asian Emerging Multi Currency Portfolio. The portfolio started with a $100,000 investment and a $200,000 loan in Japanese yen (more on the loans in a moment).

This gave us $300,000 to invest in this portfolio.

Amount

Currency

Investment

75,000

Rupee

Jyske Invest Indian Equity Mutual Fund

75,000

Yuan

Jyske Invest Chinese Equity Mutual Fund

75,000

Yen

Jyske Invest Japanese Equity Mutual Fund

75,000

Multiple

Jyske Invest Emerging Market Bond Fund

Investments Total Value 300,000.00

Invested $100,000

Loan $200,000 100.00% JPY at 1.63%

Loan cost for one year $3,260.

This portfolio diversified into bonds and equities throughout Asia ..very multi currency.

Chinese yuan, Indian rupee, Japanese yen and more.

Twelve months later the portfolio was worth $417,420. Paying off the loan cost $203,260 leaving $214,160 or $114,160 (114.16% profit) on the $100,000 originally invested.

On November 1, 2006 we made the five changes mentioned above. We dropped the Japanese equities and emerging market bond mutual funds and added an Eastern European, Far Eastern and Turkey equity mutual funds. This is how the rearranged portfolio stood.

Amount

Currency

Investment

75,000

Rupee

Jyske Invest Indian Equity Mutual Fund

75,000

Yuan

Jyske Invest Chinese Equity Mutual Fund

75,000

EUR

Jyske Invest Eastern European Equities

50,000

Asian

Jyske Invest Far Eastern Equities

25,000

Lira

Jyske Invest Turkish Equities

Investments Total Value 300,000.00

Invested $100,000

Loan $200,000 100.00% Czech Koruna at 3.875%

Loan cost for one year $7,750.

As promised this portfolio only had five changes. We swapped the Japanese equity fund for a Eastern European equity fund and dropped the bond fund replacing it with a Far Eastern and Turkey equity fund.

May I, at this point, interject a note about Jyske Invest fund managers. They are a Danish firm and are the investment management affiliate of Jyske Bank. This rock solid organization uses a good value system have been rated #1 by Morningstar. They use this value system to select shares in their mutual funds and we place these funds in our multi currency portfolios because they are strictly regulated by the Danish government and have such an excellent record…because they focus on finding value, not market timing.

So how did this new updated portfolio do? From November 1, 2006 to October 31, 2007 the fund rose in value from $300,000 to $430,370. The loan payoff of $207,750 leaves a profit of $222,620 or a rise of 122.62%.

There you have it, a safe sleepy portfolio created at and held in one of the world’s safest banks. With only three trades in two years the performance has been up 114.16% in year one and up 122.62% in year two.

I am sure that when looking at performance like that you are thinking “how did the other portfolios do?” Good question and your suspicions are correct…some of the other portfolios did not rise this much.

Yet believe it or not some portfolios did even better.

For example the 2007 Green Portfolio consisted of six shares and rose 266.30%!

Here is the exact performance of all five portfolios for the last two years.

2006 Portfolio

US Dollar Long

9.04%

US Dollar Short

10.43%

US Dollar Hedge

11.46%

Emerging Market

42.93%

Asia Emerging Market

114.16%

2007 Portfolios

Dollar Neutral

38.67%

Dollar Short

48.19%

Swiss Samba

53.32%

Asia Emerging Market

122.62%

Green

266.30%

You can imagine with performance like this attracted quite a bit of attention…and it did.  However these high returns are not the important benefit you gain with our multi currency course.

Our course does not recommend nor manage portfolios.  We did not suggest that any single reader invest in any of these portfolios. The portfolios are educational and designed to help readers work with their own investment manager to create their own multi currency portfolio that suits their own special, individual needs.

Our multi currency investment course helps readers learn how to manage their manager… nothing more.

Yet this is incredibly valuable because Jyske Bank can provide a stable and safe institution for those who wish to employ a multi currency strategy.

The course helps guide readers so they can direct any investment adviser or investment manager who understands how to invest in more than one currency.

The course also helps you manage risk. The incredible portfolio performance above was achieved because the portfolios were leveraged using a tactic we call a multi currency sandwich. Investors borrow low and invest in yielding or growth portfolios. The portfolios used loans in Japanese yen and Swiss francs to magnify profits in good times.

The course teaches how these loans can magnify losses in bad times as well.

For example look at the performance of the leveraged portfolios we created to study from November 2007 through September 2008.

2008 Portfolios

Infrastructure Portfolio

-112%

Blue Chip Portfolio

-79%

Danish Health Portfolio

-92%

Asia Emerging Market

-73%

Green

-56%

Leverage in 2008 caused the portfolios to lose badly…in one instance the total portfolio was lost!

The multi currency course is useful because it helps investors not to expect rising markets all the time.

The power of studying markets real time, as they unfold, wards off false expectations.

The course helps subscribers learn how to look ahead and act rather that react (after the fact when it is too late).

The sad fact is…we all have to become multi currency investors.  Trusting your fate to any one currency now can destroy your purchasing power.    Every investor needs to know what to do!

The course helps spot when to leverage good times and when to retract for the bad.  he idea is to cash in when the going is good and then withdraw.

For example in early August 2007…well before the market crash….our study of the market began to show increased risk.  Our first warning lesson said:  “We have enjoyed two years of enormous growth.  Periods of high growth are normally followed by periods of low growth.”

August 17, 2007 a lesson said: “The numbers are close enough that we could be entering the fourth sub cycle down (similar to 1976 to 1978). If so expect a sustained drop in markets for two to three years.”

On September 21, 2007, a lesson said: “equity markets dropped again violently last month. Now these markets have recovered again. Yet this may be a last gasp party.”

An October 14, 2007 lesson stated:  “We never know for sure when an upwards cycle will stall. Fundamentals look good for a bright 2008 in emerging and equity markets, but this can change quickly so to give our readers a better perspective, this year we are reducing leverage and adding a sixth portfolio with no leverage to study”.

The October 15, 2007 lesson reviewed how leveraged investments rise and fell faster than investments without leverage.

The lesson on Oct 26, 2007  saved many investors as it was entitled Leveraged Investments Gone.  Just before markets started to head south this lesson warned: “I have had only about 10% of my portfolio leveraged. Compare this to 200% for the Green Portfolio (which is up 265% this year). Now I have none.

So a lot of my portfolio investments are basically in a multi currency portfolio of bonds…mostly in pounds, Swedish and Danish kroner. The equities I hold are mainly in Europe and I do not leverage equities…especially after markets have risen so much. Periods of high returns are normally followed by periods of low returns. These facts, plus my belief that numerous economic woes are rising and my recollection of Oct 1987 leave me wanting to reduce risk in my equity portfolio. So now I have eliminated all my leverage.”

The next lesson warned again: “Okay it’s time to turn the burner down.”

A November 8, 2007 Black Friday lesson reviewed  all the warnings above again and more.

The course also helps readers find ways to spot unusual distortions that profit even in bad times.

For example  lessons  on April 18 and April 27 2009 looked at the benefit of investing in Brazilian currency bonds.

This lesson led to a quick profit.

Here is an excerpt from our June 12, 2009 lesson:

Based on these ideas and those presented in the April 18 and April 27 lessons we looked at why Brazilian bonds made good sense in the LONG TERM.

Sometimes we get lucky though in the short term… as we have now.

Brazilian bonds have made a sudden jump up!   Those who have invested in them have made as much as 50% (in US dollar terms) this year.

Yet the distortion we’ll review below shows how there is even more dollar denominated profit potential ahead.

Last week the Brazilian central bank lowered key interest rates to 9.25%.  This will likely send the price of  Brazilian real denominated bonds up.

The central bank has stated that there could be more rate cuts, but they will be smaller.

This is positive news plus Brazilian inflation has declined to 5.2% from 5.53% in April 2009.

When you take into account the high interest of the real, the rise in value of bonds and the rise of the real you can see the potential.

Brazilian real bonds have risen nearly 30% since the beginning of the year…  in terms of Euro!

This is where there is another huge distortion.  The real has not risen anywhere near this much versus the dollar.

The charts from finance.yahoo.com below show the distortion.

In the last three months the US dollar has dropped from $1 = 2.30 BRL to $1 = $1.97 (- 14.3%) versus the Brazilian real as this chart shows.

brazil-distortion

In the last three months the euro has dropped from 1 euro = 3.05BRL to 1 euro = 2.60 BRL (-13.5%).   This correlation of the euro and dollar would seem normal except…

brazil-distortion

as the chart below shows, the euro has risen from $1 euro = $1.28 to 1 euro =$1.40 a 9.27% rise versus the US dollar.

brazil-distortion

In addition the Brazilian central bank has had to intervene several times in recent months to avoid the Brazilian real being too strong against the euro.

Traditionally the real has had a strong correlation with the dollar but the recent weakening of the buck versus the dollar has not spilled over into the Brazilian real.

In other words. The real is up against the euro almost 10% more than against the dollar.  This is called a cross rate distortion and means that one of two things is likely to happen.  The dollar will rise versus the euro or  the dollar will fall versus the Brazilian real.

Given the fundamental US fiscal weaknesses that could push the dollar down, I am bullish on the real rising more versus the dollar and this makes me bullish about Brazilian real denominated bonds.

Always remember the basic rule though is to never speculate more than you can afford to lose.   A US dollar – Brazilian real sandwich is worth discussing with your portfolio manager or adviser now but could creates losses as well as profits.

I have not leveraged my Brazilian bond investment. Based on this data I instructed JGAM to increase me Brazilian bond holdings.

If you are using Jyske Bank, and are a non US citizen or resident, or a US citizen living abroad, you can simply have the bank purchase Brazilian bonds and lend you the funds (within the bank’s loan to asset restrictions).   Non US citizens contact Rene Mathys for more details at mathys@jbpb.dk

US citizens should contact Thomas Fischer at fischer@jgam.com

If you are a US citizen resident in the US and have an advisory account with JGAM, they may not be able to buy Brazilian bonds for you.  They could  buy the US traded ETF “The WisdomTree Dreyfus Brazilian Real Fund.” (BZF)

These three lessons (April and June 2009) helped many readers cash in on an unusual value!

I would like to invite you to enroll in our multi currency investment course and to also receive a nine lesson report that covers basics and fundamentals of  multi currency investing.

This nine lesson report has been read by tens of thousands of investors over the years.   This report sells on its own as a survivor’s hand guide to currency turmoil for $79.  I’ll email it to you free when you enroll in our online course.

The course is emailed to you regularly and studies stock, bond and currency markets worldwide, real time, as they unfold.

I believe, from the response of tens of thousands of readers over the last 20 years, that you will gain enormously from the course.

Our course helps you learn  why and where to invest and learn why and how currencies and interest rates rise and or fall.

The initial nine lesson report I’ll email you free also shows how to calculate and manage leveraged risk and how to decide if and when to leverage or not.

Is this course for you?

Everyone needs to know how to have multi currency diversification. But in case this course does not help you, we provide a 30 day “completely satisfied or your money back” guarantee that we have offered our hundreds of thousands of readers for more than 20 years.

Our Multi Currency Educational Service is a mere $175 for a very long and educational year! Won’t you share this exciting world of wealth accumulation with us and our readers around the world? Multi Currency Educational Service

Gary Scott

Multi Currency Portfolios Course. Subscribe

Or enjoy this multi currency course for a year free!  Here is how you can save $175.

We enhance our emailed courses with regular international investing and business seminars that I conduct in coordination with Jyske Bank and Jyske Global Asset Management.

Here I am at our last seminar in Naples Florida (may 2009).

multi-currency-debt

The speakers at the Naples seminar discussed prospects for the economic future.  Left to right: Samuel Rachlin,  Rich Checkan, Steve Blumenthal, Joe Cox, John Mauldin, Gary Scott, Lars Stouge. Thomas Fischer Moderating.

The 115 delegates reported that they really gained from listening to what we had to say and…

brazilian-bond-distortion

talking among themselves during the coffee brakes and at meals.

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One benefit of these seminars is talking to an overseas banker.  Here I am at the Naples  seminar  with my Jyske account executive Anders Nielsen.

brazilian-bond-distortion

Thomas Fischer of Jyske Global Asset Management will join us for the July North Carolina seminar.

I invite you to attend this July course. If you enroll between now and July 1st, I’ll also enroll you in  our emailed multi currency course free. You save $175.

Enroll in our July 24-26 International Investing and Business Made EZ course here

Here is Thomas speaking to our delegates at a previous course.

brazilian-bond-distortion

Enroll in our emailed Multi Currency Portfolios Course for $175  here.  Subscribe

Save $175!  Receive the emailed course free when you Enroll in our July 24-26 International Investing and Business Made EZ course here

Here is what a few others from around the world have said about our services and reports on international investing.

“ Gary , I am a long time subscriber in various media, and while cleaning out my files today I found some old ‘Gary A. Scotts World Reports’. In particular, the April 1988 issue provided the info that made me over a million dollars. Just wanted to say a belated ‘thank you’ and please continue the excellent work. Warm regards,”

From an Unknown Reader

“Dear Gary, I would like to give thanks to you for introducing me to Jyske Bank two years ago.

“I have been a long-time client of Merrill Lynch, but am in the process of re-evaluating my relationship with the largest brokerage company in the world. My problem is that when I compare Merrill to Jyske, Jyske outshines Merrill (or other major U.S. brokerage firms) in most categories as follows:

“1) Even though Jyske is much smaller, it has a much more global perspective which is critical in an evermore global investment environment.

“2) In order to maximize their own individual revenue, the brokers at Merrill prefer to outsource the day-to-day management of their accounts to various fund managers and hence, ‘manage the managers’. In contrast, I can call my Account Manager at Jyske and he can discuss every aspect of my account in detail with me.

“3) I attribute this difference in #2 to the fact that Jyske’s employees are not compensation driven, but instead are focused on satisfying their customers. That is why Jyske’s clients stay with the Bank on average for 12 years, which is phenomenal by Wall Street standards.

“4) Jyske’s security is far more stringent than that of Merrill’s. In addition to the standard account code and password, to pass through Jyske’s security one has to enter a Key Card number and also a randomly-generated 4-digit number from said Key Card.

“5) Having an account offshore allows me to sleep better given the anxious times we live in. Since I report the existence of the account and pay all taxes due, I am fully compliant with the law. However, such an account gives me and my family a ‘financial life boat’ should events in our own country ever get out of hand.

“As Dorothy Parker once said, ‘You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make them THINK’. Jyske is a thinking person’s bank. My only complaint is the time zone difference since I live in California . However, since I am an early riser and my Account Manager is very responsive to my emails, this problem is very small relative to the HUGE benefits.

“Again, many thanks for introducing me to Jyske Bank. Given the ‘dumbing down’ that occurs in the popular media today, your ezine and its recommendations are ever more important. Please continue your good work to enlighten your readership.

“Warm regards,”

C.M. CALIFORNIA Businessman

“I was so overwhelmed with information I received I had to spend several days reading, sorting and filing it! I have decided to move my modest investment capital overseas.”

B.W. MONTREAL CANADA Professor

“Send me your report on safe banks lending at 7% for redeposit at 13% or more.” B.V. ADDIS ABADA ETHIOPIA Economic Commission United Nations

“A number of new and significant contacts were made. It would be extremely helpful if you could supply us with WORLD REPORTS.” I.M. TORONTO , CANADA Banker

“You are as good as your word which is rare these days. I look forward to attending one of your seminars.” C.K. GENEVA , SWITZERLAND Banker

“In spite of my marketing experience, your information really got me going!” M. C. LONDON, ENGLAND Marketing Consultant

“Thanks for the three reports. They are very interesting and should find many readers here in Japan .” M.A. Tokyo , JAPAN Computer Programmer

“I would like to say how much I enjoyed the information I received.” A.B. Providenciales TURKS & CAICOS Accountant

“First let me say how much we enjoyed the investment seminar.” W.J. SAUDI ARABIA Oil Engineer

“Once again thanks for all the great information.” G.K. PERTH , AUSTRALIA Insurance Executive

“Your letter of November 8th warned me to beware of the market just a week before the 120 point crash on November 15th!” T.G. N. CAROLINA Pilot”

Won’t you join us as we learn from our Multi Currency Educational Service? Just a mere $175 for a full 12 months of valuable, wealth building education.

Enroll in our emailed Multi Currency Portfolios Course for $175  here.  Subscribe

Save $175!  Receive the emailed course free when you Enroll in our July 24-26 International Investing and Business Made EZ course here

Ecuador Bars


Ecuador bars are at times functional but also part of the culture.

The recent loss of Air France 447 had more impact on me than I would have thought… somehow recalling the millions of miles I have logged rushing through the dark night… high… comfortable and content…. protected by a sliver of aluminum skin.

I know that flying has risk. My children flew from England to the US for Christmas on the same Pan Am flight one day after the Lockerbie disaster.

Yet over the years memories fade and one forgets that even in the most mundane events there is risk that we can view as dangerous or enlivening.

I am thinking this because  recently we emailed an advertisement about a house for sale on Lake San Pablo near Otavalo and Cotacachi.

We showed pictures…

Ecuador-Lake-Property

of San Pablo Lake and…

Ecuador-Lake-Property

the house for sale.

Ecuador-Lake-Property

This is a 2,895 square foot house on 5.43 acres on San Pablo Lake, Otavalo for sale at $250,000.  To see the ad click on Ecuador lake property for sale.

Many readers wrote and asked me about those windows that were barred.

Apparently many readers asked the sellers about the bars as well since the seller recently sent me this note.

Gary, many have asked me to address the question regarding the bars on the windows.

The bars are there at this time, as no one from the family goes to the Lake House every weekend, as we are in the US, the decision was made to place these bars as we needed to make sure that our absence there will be no trespassing which we have never heard of one.  Although, it is true that in Ecuador insurance companies give a discount to have the bars on the windows, the new owners can remove them if they wish, we have never had a problem of a breaking into the house or the property.  Hope this addresses the matter, and as mentioned these bars can be removed without a problem.

I have more to say.

One of the great parts of living in different cultures is learning and enjoying new ways of life. Global living expands horizons… unless one tries to move expecting or even worse demanding their new home to be just like their old.

When I first moved to Hong Kong in the late 1960s,  I was fresh out of Prudential sales school which included how to dress… suits, ties, blue blazers and gray flannels and such.  It was refreshing to meet multi millionaires who wore robes… to see different ways of living… eating and yes they had bars on the windows there as well.  They also had shotgunned Sikh guards at every bank.

Then I moved to England and traveled and worked throughout Europe. There I discovered the courtyard. Europeans do not display their wealth like Americans do.   This is a culture  where there has been war after war. When people have wealth they hide it inside… conservative… smart.  This is especially true of the Latins… where the invasions and counter invasions have come and gone since Roman times and before.

Latins love the courtyard.  Our hotel Meson de las flores… looks pretty plain outside.

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I love the courtyard as well…

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being outside within…

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an island from the hustle and bustle and crowd.

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Here are delegates at a recent course in our courtyard.

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This building was built in the 1800s… not as a hotel but as a home of one of the wealthy families here.  The downstairs was a stable.  This is the Latin way.

Every way of life has risks of some sort. Big cities have condos with locked doors and doormen.   US suburbs have gated communities…  security systems and private guards.

Here in the deep mountains of North Carolina we are 3/4 of  an hour from the nearest police… a mile or so from our closest neighbor and there are a some people who use drugs and meths.  Last year one of our neighbors was shot and murdered by an employee caught cracking his safe. Then the robber in a panic killed the wife and son as well.

So we have a different security system.

First cameoflauge.  Here is the entrance to our farm…

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nothing fancy… even our office which can be seen from the road…

ecuador-bars

was built to look like an old barn. We even put a special finish on when it was new so it looked old.

An invisible target is no target at all.  This is a good piece of advice in all aspects of business investing and life.

Plus if someone were to come at night… we keep a shotgun.  This is the way it is  in the mountains in many houses.  No bars are on the windows because people know there is a risk if they break in.

This is a system that is usual, expected and effective here.  Yet when our children’s friends from England visit they are amazed… all these guns!

Every aspect of life has risk. When you think about it… life would be pretty boring if not.

An international life in Ecuador, Asia, Europe, Africa, city or country brings broadened horizons because this process lets us see different ways that many cultures deal with risk.  Learning all these ways makes us fuller, more balanced and wiser… if we are willing to learn.

Those who blind themselves with desires for the very existence they are leaving however… slow or reduce the joy of this growth process.

Next time you travel… look at the differences you see… not as risk but as opportunities to see new ways that others have adjusted to their histories. Do this and it can lead to a wonderful life where no holds are barred!

Gary

Join us in North Carolina or Ecuador

July 4-8  Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

Ecuador Patience


There is extra opportunity in Ecuador for those with patience.

This chess set started me thinking about patience.

market-Timing

This is a time of great opportunity…  perhaps the greatest in 40 years…yet not without the bravery to accept risk… and several other qualities…. patience…  flexibility… resilience… tenacity… acceptance and a bird’s eye view to see the big picture.

In a moment… we’ll look at some Ecuador real estate and see how patience works there.   First a true and recent story… about patience and chess.

Having lived a wandering life… I have not accumulated a lot of stuff in the years I was moving around.   In fact only one material thing survived  my decades in Hong Kong and Europe… this ivory chess set.

market-Timing

I am not even sure why I lugged the wooden, silk lined box through so many countries.  For years I did not even play… but I kept the set and now it’s a treasure to me.

The set is a little battered.  Our five children each had a go at it one time or another.   A couple of the rooks are minus their ears.

Overall however this is a lovely set…  4 inch, pure ivory… no longer possible to import.  I love its feel.

Our friend and farm manager, Richard Goebel, and I have a continual, running game.  The board sits in our hallway and as Richard or I pass through we stop for a moment… study and make a move.

Sometimes when Merri and I are traveling we are weeks between moves… but a game is always on the board.   Richard and I are pretty evenly matched.  Usually there is no  winner… just a loser… the one who made the most current stupid error.

Recently it was my turn at stupidity, (aghhhh).  Early in the game, I gave up my queen.

Carelessness… pure and simple. I can offer nothing more.

I was instantly discouraged.  We both had nearly a full board but I was already missing my queen!  “How can I possibly win” I thought, “with such a disadvantage?”

I was about to give up when some quiet voice said, “No, keep playing.”

A few days later Richard stupidly gave up his queen as well.  That game dragged on for days but in the end the match was mine because of… patience.

This started me thinking about these seven qualities that can unlock enormous business and investing opportunity now:

#1: Bravery to accept risk

#2: Flexibility

#3: Resilience

#4: Tenacity

#5: Acceptance

#6: Bird’s eye view

#7: Patience

Thinking about patience reminded me of  John Milton’s poem  “On His Blindness.”

Milton is acclaimed to be one of the greatest English poets and I am not sure he was always patient.   Resilient yes… he was kicked out of university, lost wives and was imprisoned for his political views and went blind… yet managed to keep creating his incredible prose.

However  I believe that Milton understood patience… perhaps from his blindness because he ended his poem “On His Blindness”  (see the entire poem below) with this powerful reminder, “They also serve who only stand and wait.”

The Chinese have an even more ancient saying:  “Sit on the river bank long enough and you see the bodies of all your enemies float by”.

Patience is important when buying real estate in Ecuador or anywhere.

Merri and I spent seven years tromping up and down mountains to buy our first hacienda (Rosaspamba) in Ecuador.

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Here Merri and I are building our first hut at our Ecuador hacienda… Rosaspamba.

We negotiated nearly a year to buy this building… that was a mess.

Cotacachi condos

fixed it looks like this…

Cotacachi-condos

and is getting better because we are patiently fixing one floor at a time.

If a person spends time in Ecuador  and stays alert, he’ll see many incredible fixer upper bargains.

Just over a year ago, Merri and I bought the four story office building shown above.   We began cleaning it up and converting two floors into condos.

If one is not in a hurry, construction costs are low.

This was the third floor kitchen… another mess.

Here is the third floor now.

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This if fully furnished with…

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one bedroom and …

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office/den (or second bedroom)  and…

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balcony.   The kitchen now…

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looks great.  The hardwood cabinets had not been installed when I took this shot but are in place now.

We did not start fixing this floor until we dealt with the 4th floor… an even worse mess.  Patience, patience!

Before.

After.

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This is a loft studio with…

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great light and an open feel with…

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full dining area and…

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kitchen.

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These floors are among the highest points in the village and views from both units are the best around.  Mornings give…

the sunrise over Mt. Imbabura.

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Evenings offer sunset in the east on Mt. Cotacachi.

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Views are great at night with the village alight.

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and you can see the entire village…

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and both mountains during the day.

Where we had huge walls we said…”How about windows with a view instead?”   The builder  figured out what height was needed to see Mt. Cotacachi and simply knocked the window openings in the walls. Then he built hardwood window surrounds that frame this view.

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The bathroom includes a full tiled bathtub and spa shower like this.

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The king size sleeping nook has this view also and is fully curtained…

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with full hardwood closets.

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These units are available for rental on a three, six or 12 month lease, by the way. Send me a note at gary@garyascott.com

Anyone can have a nice place like this but to get one with great value requires patience.

Patiently fixing up this  property will provide us with some nice extra profit with good value because we were patient… in buying… in fixing.

We  did all this slowly… from cash flow… patiently so we developed value.

I have been using patience to look for real estate in Florida as well.  After months of scouring the state… looking at hundreds of listings we made our first offer… at about half the already reduced asking price.

This is where patience and the never ending quest for value comes into play.

Value is really hard to understand in the real estate and equity market now because the bubble of 2007 created many false illusions.

The values of a house are twofold… the value of a roof overhead and the value of whatever price it can be resold.

These are unpredictable times.   Basing a potential resale on previous inflated bubble prices can be a great error.

Tomorrow we’ll see how,  after months of searching Merri and I are using patience to make our first offer for property in Florida.

Join us at a course our tour in 2009 in Ecuador or North Carolina. Here is our future 2009 courses

June 12-14 Shamanic Mingo Tour

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June 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

June 18-21 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 3-6 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two

These are great reminders that at times, patience is a most important quality in investing, business and all of life.

On His Blindness
John Milton

When I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days, in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodged with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest He returning chide,—
Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?
I fondly ask:—But Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies: God doth not need
Either man’s work, or His own gifts, who best
Bear His mild yoke, they serve Him best. His state
Is kingly; thousands at His bidding speed
And post o’er land and ocean without rest:—
They also serve who only stand and wait.

Ecuador Travel Tip


Ecuador Travel Tip

Ecuador-travel-tips

This time of year is glorious in the Blue Ridge. Here is a shot of our front yard.  Yet soon we head south traveling again to Ecuador.

There is plenty of beauty in Ecuador too.

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I took this shot from near our hotel Meson de las Flores. The difference is this green was in the middle of winter. Cotacachi’s weather is eternal spring!

Ecuador travel is easy from the USA… less then four hours from Miami to Ecuador about five from Atlanta to Ecuador.

However travel is travel and security procedures combined with airline cutbacks have added stress on travel to Ecuador or anywhere.

So I thought the note below about Ecuador travel was worth sharing with all.

Gary,  I know you and Merri must be very healthy to do as much time on airlines as you both do, and many other attendant exposures!  In all the years I have enjoyed your news letters, I have never heard of either of you being “down with the flu or cold”!   Do you eat airlines food?  or do you have any other tips for healthy eating on airlines?  Any other health tips for airlines will be appreciated and put to good use!

The reader is correct… Neither Merri or I are hardly ever ill.  Neither of us has been to an MD (for sickness) in over 20 years. I cannot recall missing a day of work because we were ill.

There are many things we do to maintain our energy and health.  We try to spend  our time and money on health preservation instead of medical insurance.  There are links to numerous health tips below.

Here let’s just look at some tips for health on planes.

In May 1968,  I boarded my first commercial flight Portland, Vancouver, Tokyo, Hong Kong on Canadian Pacific Airlines.

Merri (I did not know her then) at about the same time was headed Atlanta – New York – Frankfurt on Lufthansa.

Over the next 41 years, we’ve traveled to more than 70 countries researching business opportunities, exploring and enjoying new destinations.

We have lived and worked on every continent.

Many of you like ourselves are on the run, traveling thousands of miles and crossing dozens of time zones the year through. We have to perform well on these trips even as we put enormous stress on our bodies.

Here are a few tricks we have learned over the millions of miles we have flown. I hope they help you in your travel to Ecuador… or wherever.

First, avoid peanuts and other hard to digest foods on airplanes. In fact it’s better to avoid salted peanuts completely. Our friend, the Taita Yatchak, who lived with us at our hacienda in Ecuador  was amazed to see us eat roasted peanuts. “High in Uric Acid”, he said.

Our Indian (from India) friends who are experts in Ayurveda (the 5000 year old Science of Life) have also warned us away from peanuts as being very hard to digest. They are known as tomasic (meaning those things that destroy rather than build).

Then imagine getting on a plane and crossing the ocean and a half dozen time zones which will throw off our digestion in itself.

This is a dry dehydrating environment hard on the kidneys. These factors alone are hard enough. To throw in a hard to digest food high in uric acid is like the kiss of death.

Second, avoid alcohol on airplanes. Dehydrating as well, hard on kidneys,and liver. Mixed with roasted peanuts! Ahhhhhh!

Third, sleep when traveling towards the sun. Travel through time zones throw off our Circadian rhythm.

We find that it helps to stay awake when traveling away from the sun. We fly to Europe or South America numerous times every year when I speak at seminars there and to visit our children.

Often I have to get up the day after I arrive and conduct seminars… sometimes for  eight hours. This requires a clear mind and energetic body.  So we need to be sure that the flight has not drained us.

We have flown across the Atlantic with clients and observed as they tucked into cocktails (peanuts!) heavy dinner, desserts and after dinner liquors while we are settling down to sleep through the flight.

We awaken, have only a little breakfast on the plane, and meet the European morning refreshed and ready to have a full day (but we go to bed early the first night).   Those clients are dragging and beat.  “Where on earth do you get your energy?” they ask.

Can’t sleep on planes?

Buy some Valerian tea at the health food store, ask for hot water and make your own tea. It tastes like what I imagine dirty gym socks would taste, but is a natural way to get to sleep.

We also use melatonin to restore the natural melatonin that is lost on endless time zones. Just buy a bottle of liquid from the health food store and take 20 minutes before sleep.

I also bring along my Bose noise suppressing headphones and some baroque music.

Before I leave on a journey, I massage my feet with an essential oil blend.

When essential oils are applied to our feet, they stimulate zones on our feet that “mirror” the entire body. Stimulating these reflexes sends messages to the associated body parts that help reduce tension, improve circulation and help the body deliver oxygen and nutrients to the cells… important benefits on a flight.

I use my Essential Oil Blend Chart, created by Candace Newman and massage the oil blend in my hair, put it in my ears up my nose, on my face and on my collar and shirt cuffs.

The oil fights virus and bacteria plus helps balance the flighty feeling on a flight.

Here is Candace’s Essential Oil Blend Chart.

essential-oil-chart

We also avoid airplane water (except bottled).   We add a drop of Rose Otto essential oil.  This makes a tasty rose water that aids digestion and the time transition.

We make sure the oil we use is Rose Otto which is the steam distilled essential oil of rose petals. Otto is the term used to differentiate the steam distilled variety from the ‘Rose Absolute’ and “Rose Concrete”.  The extraction process for both Absolute and Concrete use solvents so Rose Otto from the Bulgarian ‘damask’ Rose, cultivated since the 16th century, is considered to produce the finest quality essence

Rose Otto is bright, alive, richly floral and complex and is more potent than the Absolute and Concrete so smaller amounts of Rose Otto are required.

You can order Rose Otto 4 ml here

We also spray ourselves (head and face and air above us) with lavender essential oil lavender misted with distilled water to combat dehydration and to refresh, cleanse and purify.

In Aromatherapy, mists and hydrosols are generally used to calm our emotions, lift our spirit, cleanse the air, and soothe the skin.

You can make your own mist with Lavender oil.

You can order Lavender  essential oil here 10 ml

Candace Newman has a four mist sampler pack that contains all four of mists.

Candace offers a sample of four 1 oz essential oil mist blends each in amber plastic bottle with zipper carrying case and includes an Essential Oil Mist Chart is included free.

1 ounce Lavender Mist
1 ounce Lavender-Peppermint Mist
1 ounce Lavender-Rose Mist
1 ounce Rejuvenation Mist

Essential-oil-mist

Learn more or order here.

Next we travel first or business class using our frequent flyer miles to upgrade ourselves. There is more privacy and room in this class and because we book as early as possible, we almost always are upgraded.

We do yoga (or stretching) before we get on and off… plus stretch during the flight. This helps keep spinal fluids moving. The spine is often perceived as just a stack of bones in reality it is our gateway of energy and it shifts with every thought we have about life. It is a precise mirror of who we are. With every stress we have, the interrelationships of bones, muscles, ligaments, and nerves are altered in and through the spine. These deviations are minute, often imperceptible, but no matter how small, the changes in the spine have gigantic effects on the body.

I then use a spinal tuner before and after each flight.  You can learn about Joe Culbertson’s spinal tuner at www.spine-tuner.com

On long flights we also  wear an ionizer around our necks. This purifies the air and  creates negative ions that makes us feel fresher and cleaner.

This is a shot of my well used travel ionizer.

Ecuador-travel-tips

Mine is old and about the size of a pack of cigarettes.  New ones are in the market for $119. They offer a Corona Discharge Air Purification technology to create fresh air while purifying the air with a stream of charged electrons (Ions) .  This Ionizer is worn around the neck so a continuous stream of ions flows toward the face.  A round magnet rests on the back of the neck to reinforce your body’s magnetic field (which is off balance in high altitudes).  Google the word Chionizer and you’ll see a number of sites offering this product.

We also try to arrive and leave via a small airport. When we are in North Carolina we fly Delta’s commuter partner in Tri-Cities Tennessee to Atlanta or Cincinnati.  Big airports like Miami or Atlanta create a lot of stress… crowds, noise, rudeness and pollution.  This is not a good way to start or end a flight.  By starting at a small airport, there’s not much stress, people remember us and it goes smooth and easy.

Finally we meditate when we get on the plane, often during the flight and before we disembark.

We do our best to eat little or nothing and avoid hard to digest foods on these long hauls…just some pure water, fresh fruit…. sometimes a boiled egg… a few seeds and nuts are very satisfying.  Rest and avoid stress as much as you can on the journey.

Every generation has had its health cross to bear. Neanderthal Man faced the Saber Tooth Tiger.  Medieval  Europe had plagues.  Today we face fast food, stress and long flights!

It is a miracle, privilege and responsibility that we have the freedom to travel almost anywhere on this good earth we choose. This gives us the ability to broaden our horizons and contribute more to the world. These few simple tips  can reduce the negative elements of the great joy of air travel.

Gary

Join us at an upcoming Ecuador or North Carolina conference or tour.

On our upcoming Imbabura real estate tours we’ll look at real estate on all three of the big lakes near Cotacachi. Here is a map of the area.

Ecuador-travel-tips

June 12-14 Shamanic Mingo Tour

June 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

June 18-21 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

We’ll  visit the sacred Quicocha lake for a shamanic study and perhaps a ceremony.

July 4-8  Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Ecuador-Lake-Property

View from San Pablo Lake property for sale.

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Lake Yahuarcocha

The lake is a historical site also known as Blood Lake because of a 13 year battle between the locals and Incas.

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

More Health Tip Links

Natural Health One Step at a Time

Vision and Food

Here’s Incredible Power

Natural Awakenings to Secrets of Longevity

Foundations of Health

Investing Inspired by Raspberries at Dawn

Ecuador Shamans & Purification

Green Investing & Ecuador Cars


Green investments may have extra value now.

“Green  Cars”  means something different now… than it did when I began to drive.

Today “Green Car” might means this….”Small is beautiful”.

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45 years ago a “green car” meant something like this!

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“Bigger was better!”

Thinking about this change can help us cash in on green investing.

Actually buying a car like the GTO would have been a pretty good investment.

Rare cars had really good appreciation for many years… but the green, very non green, GTO above can tell us more about where to invest in “Environmental Green.”   A change in green mentality can show us how to spot special investing value that goes way beyond collecting antique cars.

This was my first car.

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This was a 1958 Chevy Bel Air.  I bought it in 1963, used… for $895. This forced me to get a job…. busing dishes at a steak house in Portland, Oregon.   That car sort of set my lifestyle for decades… a solid member of the “one car per person” society.

I lived a mile from an isolated levy on the Columbia River… so yes, I drove my Chevy to the levy.

No more!   Bye Bye Miss American Pie is a more appropriate tune since Pontiac is about to die.   What could be more American Pie than a Pontiac?

I know because this was my second car…

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a 1966 Pontiac Tempest LeMans Sprint.

These pictures from www.cardomain.com brought back fond memories.  I can list every car I have ever owned in order… it’s a guy sort of thing… but this is not the point here.

That Pontiac had a special new Pontiac – built 230 cubic-inch overhead cam six power plant, the only such engine found in an American production car at that time.  This was available in this Sprint option package on two-doors with a four-barrel, high-compression 207 horsepower version,  marketed as an alternative to higher-priced European sport sedans, which had similar OHC engines.

This motor was hot and was fuel efficient!  Here is a picture.

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Then the idea of smaller more fuel efficient engines was lost.  The gas guzzling GTO with a huge eight cylinder took over and this type of engine became hot.  Europe’s idea of smaller, high performance fell to the idea of … just plain… BIG.

Bigger is better.   Faster is good.   Power is king.  These became  the American ideals and most of us (boomer) guys and gals bought into it.

This led society down an incorrect, unsustainable path of consumption worth mentioning now because of Pontiac’s recent death.

A recent BBC News article entitled “Pontiac RIP” by Nick Holland tells the tale.

Here is an excerpt from that article:

The GTO transformed Pontiac into a muscle car brand.

Pontiac has become the highest-profile victim of the crisis in the American car industry.  The decision this week by General Motors to discontinue the brand shocked a generation of petrol heads who fell in love with the all American muscle cars the company developed in the 1960 and 70s.

It is a great shame that one of America’s iconic brands is having to be removed from the automotive scene

We are talking about cars like the Pontiac Firebird, The Grand Am and the GTO.
Like Route 66, roadside diners and baseball all of these vehicles have become genuine artefacts of U.S. culture.

“If ever a car company defined swagger – Pontiac was it,” says Peter DeLorenzo who runs the Autoextremist.com blog.

“Pontiac delivered cars to the market bristling with a maverick, edgy appeal and genuine soul – a commodity so far removed from most of Detroit’s products then that it was striking,” he says.

Things began to change when the company employed John De Lorean, who later founded the ill-fated De Lorean Motor Company, as its new head of engineering in 1956.

Pontiac started test driving a saloon car fitted with powerful V8 engines.

However, the vehicle did not meet General Motors’ corporate guidelines because they were considered too fast and breached an agreement with other manufacturers within the GM group to avoid building performance cars.

Regardless of that, a handful of the cars were built and Pontiac salesman drove them around to test public reaction.  They got 5,000 orders.

Once the board at General Motors found out, the GTO was born.

The popularity of the car encouraged the company to transform itself into a performance brand.

Alongside the GTO the company developed the Grand Prix and the Firebird during the 1960s, all of them muscle cars.

The demise of Pontiac is a clue… the end of a wasteful non sustainable way… plus it’s part of  this economic slowdown that signals huge socio-economic changes.

The global financial correction has pushed equity markets down everywhere and ended as time Magazine puts it, “the end of excess”.

American society revered big. Bigger was better. The more one had… the bigger the house… the faster the car… the greater the consumption… the more a consumer was respected.

Perhaps no more.  Now being environmentally sensitive is cool.

This creates a distortion because green shares have been especially hard hit.

There is a reason for this.  A USA Today article entitled “Going green can cost too much green” by Alan Gomez may help explain why.

Here are excerpts from this article:

Going green isn’t easy, especially during a recession.

For two years, the city of Durango, Colo., bought electricity for all its government buildings from wind farms. The City Council ended that program this year, reverting to electricity derived from coal-burning plants and saving the cash-strapped city about $45,000.

“It’s very hard for us to lay off an employee to justify green power,” City Manager Ron LeBlanc said. “Those are the tradeoffs you have to face.”

Across the country, government agencies are either cutting or shrinking programs that use or fund renewable energy projects. Green power — from wind farms, solar power or other renewable energy sources — remains more expensive than traditional power sources.

As budgets shrink, some people have had to scale back their green ambitions.
Pennsylvania passed a comprehensive energy plan last July that included a $100 million program to encourage people to invest in solar energy. The Pennsylvania Sunshine Program would provide reimbursements to homeowners and small business owners who installed solar electric and solar hot water projects.
The program has yet to begin, and the state will start with only $30 million in grants, according to Scott Dunkelberger, executive director of the Commonwealth Financing Authority, which administers the funding of Pennsylvania’s economic development programs. “We just want to take on the debt that we need,” he said.
That has left some in Pennsylvania waiting.

Buyers and investors have been backing off green because of short term financial concerns. Yet the huge long term problems of sustainability have not been resolved. Driving old Pontiacs might be cheaper in the short run then building new energy efficient cars… but returning to “Gitiup Little GTO” will not solve the problem’s of the high energy costs that those dual quads consume nor deal with the pollution coming from the twin exhausts.

Wise investors with a medium and long term view can gain extra value by investing in the value created by distortions in green shares that are vital to society in the long term… but depressed more than the norm right now due to short term economic concerns.

One example of this is that a no car trend is also growing. Excerpts from A New York Times article entitled “In German Suburb, Life Goes On Without Cars”
by Elisabeth Rosenthal.

VAUBAN, Germany — Residents of this upscale community are suburban pioneers, going where few soccer moms or commuting executives have ever gone before: they have given up their cars.

Street parking, driveways and home garages are generally forbidden in this experimental new district on the outskirts of Freiburg, near the French and Swiss borders. Vauban’s streets are completely “car-free” — except the main thoroughfare, where the tram to downtown Freiburg runs, and a few streets on one edge of the community. Car ownership is allowed, but there are only two places to park — large garages at the edge of the development, where a car-owner buys a space, for $40,000, along with a home.

Ecuador Cars

Ecuador has some green potential in this way because Ecuador has a great import law for cars.  You cannot import used cars to Ecuador.  You can only import new cars only…ie. in 2009 a 2008 or newer.  This helps keep junkers, gas guzzlers and smokey, old wrecks off the road.

Merri and I encourage people to forget the car in Ecuador… for several reasons.

First, it is a hassle.

Second, the taxes are  high for imported vehicles. The norm for taxes for a regular car is near 50% and as the price of the car rises…so does the percentage of tax.  Cars over $100,000 have a 100% tax.

Third, hiring a car with driver (this what Merri and I do) is really inexpensive. Cars used for commerce (i,e. taxis) can be imported into Ecuador tax free. Gas is cheap (about $1.50 a gallon) and drivers do not earn a lot.  These facts often make it cheaper to hire a car with driver than to own a car.

Using a car and driver avoids getting lost.  You eliminate the legal hassle of fender benders and provide employment. Very few of the many people I know who have moved to Ecuador have a car.

Learn more about Ecuador cars at Driving in Ecuador

Owning one’s car is ingrained in the North American mentality. I am reminded of this every time I drive through a city during commuter hours. There are miles upon miles of individuals each sitting in one car.

I understand this… the minute I turned 16  I had to get a car… a big one that was fast.

That mindset was an error that the world (and many individual budgets) can no longer afford… so say bye bye Miss American Pie and so long Little GTO.  Invest in green and when possible do what you can to eliminate one person… one car.

Gary

Learn more about green investing at our upcoming International investing and business courses.

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

You can read the entire article “Going green can cost too much green” at www.usatoday.com/money/industries/energy/2009-05-03-greencities_N.htm

You can read the entire article German Suburb, Life Goes On Without Cars at http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/12/science/earth/12suburb.html?_r=1&th&emc=th

Ecuador Risk


Ecuador has risks.

As does everywhere.  In fact our world has more risk then ever before.

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Are quiet Ecuador streets like this Cotacachi avenue at risk?

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The young Ecuadorian children who go to school early, alone don’t seem to feel much risk.  Yet?

Change creates risk and we live in an era of increasingly rapid change.

Those who welcome this fact are those who have the best chance of success. ahead.

This is the era of rapid change… the era of  extra risk.  The current time period within this era is of accelerated change and risk.

This is an important message about how to manage risk in Ecuador or anywhere.

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Even young children play alone in the Cotacachi Ecuador streets without much risk

Yet we must always take care.

Take for example the US travel advisory for Ecuador… read  without perspective. Ecuador risk would seem high.

Here are excerpts from the US travel advisory for Ecuador:

SAFETY AND SECURITY: The U.S. Embassy in Quito advises caution when traveling to the northern border region of Ecuador, to include areas in the provinces of Sucumbios, Orellana and Carchi, northern Esmeraldas, and southern Esmeraldas, south of Atacames.  U.S. government personnel are under limitations with respect to traveling alone and over-nighting in these areas due to the spread of organized crime, drug trafficking, small arms trafficking, and incursions by various Colombian terrorist organizations.

CRIME:  Crime is a serious problem in Ecuador, and visitors should be alert and cautious.  Non-violent crime is common: hundreds of Americans are robbed every year in Ecuador.   Incidents of rape have increased, even in well-traveled tourists areas and when the victims traveled in groups for safety. Shootings, kidnappings, and carjackings are still relatively rare, but American citizens have been victimized by those crimes.  The Ecuadorian government has increased police patrols in tourist areas, but travelers should remain alert to their surroundings and maintain constant control of personal belongings.

Criminals sometimes use incapacitating drugs such as scopolamine on unsuspecting tourists in order to rob them.  These so-called date rape drugs are put into drinks in order to drug the unsuspecting victim.  This drug can render the victim disoriented and can cause prolonged unconsciousness and serious medical problems.  Never allow a stranger to “buy” you a drink and never leave your drink unattended.  Several American citizens have reported thefts of property following ingestion of such substances.

Does Ecuador sound risky?

Ecuador sounds risky until you read the travel advisory for Italy.  Here are excerpts from the US travel advisory for Italy:

Some travelers are victims of rape and beatings.  There are incidents of drinks laced with drugs being used by criminals to rob, and in some cases, assault tourists.  Many of these incidents occur in the vicinity of Rome’s Termini train station and at major tourist centers such as Campo de Fiori and Piazza Navona, as well as in Florence and Naples.  Criminals using this tactic “befriend” a traveler at a train station, bus stop, restaurant, café or bar in tourist areas, then eventually offer a drink laced with a sleeping drug.  When the tourist falls asleep, criminals steal the traveler’s valuables.  There are also instances where the victim is assaulted, either physically or sexually.

Petty crimes such as pick-pocketing, theft from parked cars, and purse snatching are serious problems, especially in large cities.  Clients of Internet cafes in major cities are also targeted.  Tourists who have tried to resist petty thieves on motor scooters have suffered broken arms and collarbones.

The U.S. Secret Service in Rome is assisting Italian Law Enforcement authorities in investigating an increase in the appearance of ATM skimming devices.

Organized criminal groups operate throughout Italy, but are more prevalent in the south.  They occasionally resort to violence to intimidate or to settle disputes.

Italy could seem risky as well until you read the travel advisory for Spain .  Here are excerpts from the US travel advisory for Spain.

SAFETY AND SECURITY:     Spain and Andorra share with the rest of the world an increased threat of international terrorist incidents.  Like other countries in the Schengen area, Spain’s open borders with its Western European neighbors allow the possibility of terrorist groups entering and exiting the country with anonymity.  Spain’s proximity to North Africa makes it vulnerable to attack from Al Qaeda terrorists in the Maghreb region.  Americans are reminded to remain vigilant with regard to their personal security and to exercise caution.

In the deadliest terrorist attack in recent European history, in March 2004, Islamist extremists bombed four commuter trains entering Madrid, causing 191 deaths and over 1,400 injuries.  Spanish authorities tried the suspected terrorists and their co-conspirators in February 2007 and convicted in October 2007.

The Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) terrorist organization remains active in Spain.  ETA has historically avoided targeting foreigners, directing their attacks against the police, military, local politicians, and Spanish government targets as well as attempts to disrupt transportation and daily life. However, foreigners have been killed or injured collaterally in ETA attacks.  Two examples of this are the Barajas Airport bombing in December 2006, in which two Ecuadorian nationals were killed and the bombing at the University of Navarre in October 2008, in which 17 students were injured including one American student.  In addition, bombs have been used as part of criminal extortion of businesses, particularly in the Basque region. The risk of “being in the wrong place at the wrong time” in event of an ETA action is a concern for foreign visitors and tourists.  U.S. tourists traveling to Spain should remain vigilant, exercise caution, monitor local developments, and avoid demonstrations and other potentially violent situations.

Street crimes against tourists occur in the principal tourist areas.  Madrid and Barcelona, in particular, report incidents of pick-pocketing, mugging and occasional violent attacks, some of which require the victim to seek medical attention.  Although crimes occur at all times of day and night and to people of all ages, older tourists and Asian Americans seem to be particularly at risk.  Criminals frequent tourist areas and major attractions such as museums, monuments, restaurants, outdoor cafes, Internet cafes, hotel lobbies, beach resorts, city buses, subways, trains, train stations, airports, and ATMs.

Thieves often work in teams of two or more people.  In many cases, one person distracts a victim while the accomplices perform the robbery.   Spanish authorities warn of the availability of so-called “date-rape” drugs and other drugs, including “GBH” and liquid ecstasy.  Americans should not lower their personal security awareness because they are on vacation.

We could go on… in Europe…  in Asia… or anywhere.

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Parents in Cotacachi Ecuador do not feel much risk when they let their children play in the parks.

Mostly, places are not the cause of risk.  The causes of risk  are within,  our awareness, our actions, our  patterns and habits.

If one becomes aware of change and adapts accordingly… there is no risk.  There is opportunity instead.

Early adapters are called risk takers.   They are not.

Real risk takers are those who do not  adapt because…  we know…  there is change.

The real risk is living by OLD rules in a NEW world.

The real risk is believing in General Motors for example… because it is the biggest… oldest… so it must be safest.

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Young lovers in Ecuador can meet safely in out of the way places.

The world is new every day and each day, some old rule no longer works.

The old rules used to say that the Western world was safe… and the emerging world riskier.   The old rules said that the Western world had low crime…  the emerging world had high crime.

Yet look at excerpts of a recent New York Times article entitled “Prison Spending Outpaces All but Medicaid” by Solomon Moore (See a link to the entire article below) says:

One in every 31 adults, or 7.3 million Americans, is in prison, on parole or probation, at a cost to the states of $47 billion in 2008, according to a new study.

Criminal correction spending is outpacing budget growth in education, transportation and public assistance, based on state and federal data. Only Medicaid spending grew faster than state corrections spending, which quadrupled in the past two decades, according to the report Monday by the Pew Center on the States, the first breakdown of spending in confinement and supervision in the past seven years.

This suggests that the US has quite a lot of risk… both in crime and health.

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Ecuador people are by nature, caring, friendly and warm.

Sometimes I get letters like the one below from readers who have been victims of crime in Ecuador.  This reader lost her computer and camera when she forgot them in the business lounge at the Radisson hotel in Quito.

Dear Gary,  Can you believe, the Quito police, working with the Radisson hotel, found my  briefcase with the computer and other small items and had them sent by Federal Express to me.  I had provided them with the receipts of all the items stolen, for the items they were not able to send me  (camera and cellular phone) I was reimbursed via bank transfer. I still can’t believe it.  This was a good ending and so unexpected.  send you all love, and good thoughts. Laura

New rules about risk are being written every day and our daughter Francesca shared some thoughts on this when she recently visited us here.

Fran is quite a traveler.  Here early studies were in England… Gloucestershire and Birmingham.  Then she spent more for more than a year in Spain and Costa Rica, and moved to Naples and Delray, Florida which were bases for her to  manage real estate tours in Argentina, Belize, Chile, Ecuador and Uruguay.

She worked for several years doing human rights training in Geneva, Switzerland before returning to get her Masters degree at London School of Economics.

Then  she worked in London for the Crown Agents where she was assigned
as a project manager and consultant to governments in Nigeria,  Peru, Sierra Leone and South Africa.

She has worked the last several years  as a development planning, monitoring & evaluation consultant in Swaziland and is returning there now on a contract with the United Nations.

As a young, single woman (now married) she has had to be aware of risks traveling everywhere from Florida to London to Lagos.

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Here I am with Francesca on her wedding day.

Fran & Sam rode to their reception in Richmond Park on a bicycle built for tow.

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Riding a bike through London traffic… now that is risky!

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Here are some common sense thoughts that Francesca shares about living with risk.

Living with Risk by Francesca Scott

We’re living in risky times; from the economic collapse, to swine flu, to erratic weather conditions.  It sometimes surprises me when people ask me if I’m not worried about living in Swaziland (my current home), because, they say, Africa is such a dangerous place.  I figure that when I return to London, my risk of being attacked in a terrorist attack skyrockets.  And I am still dumbfounded by the fact that children are screened for guns at schools in the United States.  By the way in England for the first time screening for knives has begun in some inner-city London schools.

The issue of risk came to mind recently, when I was visiting my Grandma. One evening over dinner, the discussion turned to the security situation in Swaziland, and I mused that in certain ways I feel safer in Swaziland than I do in parts of London. My Grandma commented that gangs were increasingly becoming a problem in Portland, her home city, and that she didn’t feel that safe these days.  The next day, as we stopped at the local bank, I was surprised by the thick wall of bullet proof glass completely separating the staff from the general public. They don’t have that in banks in London, or in Mbabane, Swaziland’s capital city.

I began thinking about how easily we adapt to different risks within our local environments. In many countries, one would be crazy not to have bars on lower windows. In central London, I hold my bag very close to my chest – I value my purse and cell phone too much. My mother-in-law, who lives in Australia, actually leaves her keys in her car when she stops at a store to pick up groceries (gasp!).  Sadly, I doubt that will last for much longer.   So does my Dad in NC.  They have a policy on the farm that all keys remain in all vehicles…just in case someone needs to jump in one!

Each country has a different risk profile, from pick-pockets, to pollution, to drug barons.  I am not saying that Swaziland does not have its dangers – my house has been broken into several times, and I drive much more defensively than I would in the US or the UK (mostly to avoid wayward cows that have drifted onto the road).  The important thing is to be fully informed about the risks.  This might sound obvious, but sometimes people are scared off by unfamiliar risks or misinformation.

It’s also worth remembering that there are often a variety of ways to mitigate those risks through effective prevention methods, so long as you know the rules. Most of us are guilty of exposing ourselves to unnecessary risk as a result of ignorance at one time or other, and are lucky that we’ve lived to tell the tell. I was threatened at knife point by a drug addict in a park in Spain, when I lived there as a student.  When I recounted my story to my Spanish roommate, she told me that I was a fool to be in that park in the first place, ‘…didn’t you know that it’s the favorite haunt for heroine addicts in the city?’  Well, no, obviously I didn’t know at that time, but it was a valuable lesson for me about the importance of knowing the rules.

I must admit to being a little scared before I went to Swaziland.  After all, it’s in one of the poorest parts of the world, and only three hours drive from Johannesburg, a gang-ridden, violent city. I also couldn’t shake off all those awful images of Africa I’ve seen on the evening news. I told myself that I would try it out for six months (I figured I could survive for that length of time in an underground bunker living off tinned corned beef and bottled water if it was that bad), and make a decision from there about whether or not it was for me. Two-and-a-half years later, I still thoroughly enjoy living here and am very glad that I resisted my initial anxieties.

For those considering buying property, or even moving to Ecuador, or any other country – developed, developing or downright poverty stricken for that matter – I would recommend to take the time to become fully informed about the types of risks you might face.  You can find out a lot from the internet and books, but it would be a shame to be scared off by some of what you read or by the well intentioned comments of a neighbor who hasn’t ever lived away from their home town.

Everyone comes from a different starting point, and everyone has a different risk threshold.

Also, the dramatic stories tend to be more interesting to tell.  While reading around can certainly offer you a variety of different and valuable viewpoints, it’s also important to talk to people who have lived in the country. Locals can be an invaluable source of information, while ex-pats may be more appreciative of the kinds of risks unanticipated by a foreigner, risks that may seem glaringly obvious to a local. Also, find out what you can do to mitigate those risks. Often you can reduce your exposure significantly using the appropriate precautions. If you think that the benefits outweigh those risks, then go down and check out the country for yourself.  That’s the only way you can really know if the level of risk is one that you could tolerate.

It might be that the risks are in some countries and in some places, in fact, just too high, pushing you beyond your comfort zone, or that the restrictions necessary to reduce your risks would make you feel stressed and claustrophobic. It’s no fun lying restless at night at night because you’re worried over a break-in, even though you have an alarm, or resent the lack of privacy from having a guard permanently outside your house. If you’re looking for the exact replica of your own community, with the same level of risk, and a Starbucks around the corner thank you very much, then somewhere like an emerging country really may not be for you. There will inevitably be new and different risks in poorer countries, some to which you, as a foreigner, could be at much higher risk than a local.

But take a moment to reflect on the risks that you face in your daily environment back home, and you might find that such risks are relative. While some risks will be new when you move abroad, you will also leave some behind. Therefore, before making any decision of moving to a country other than your own, I recommend making sure that you are informed by the reality on the ground, not some misconception fed by the media or well-intentioned homebodies. Only with that information can you gauge whether you’ll be comfortable with the type and level of risk you might face. For an adventurous soul, you may well find that the benefits of living in a new culture, the fun of exploring a foreign terrain, make everything worthwhile.

Risk assessment is a vital part of survival and success in today’s world.

This has always been true so always consider risk… but when you evaluate danger… don’t  just look at the places where you will be.   Review your thinking, your habits and patterns to see how you can turn risk into opportunity.

Gary

Join us here at our hotel Meson de las Flores.  Learn more turning risk into opportunity at our courses and tours.

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June 12-14 Shamanic Mingo Tour

June 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

June 18-21 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 4-8  Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

See the entire article Prison Spending Outpaces All but Medicaid at http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/03/us/03prison.html

Global Investing and Ecuador


My global investing and business began 41 years ago May 2, 1968 and eventually led me to Ecuador.

My background as son of a zoo keeper did not leave me prepared.

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Here is a newspaper clipping of my sister Sandra and me feeding a baby lion we kept at home… one of many lions and tigers we raised.

Let me share 41 years of multi currency investing and a couple of important facts I learned that may help you… including what’s happening with the swine flu in Ecuador.

I arrived in Hong Kong in the night, the tropical air so soft it was a velvet mist.   Thick evening scents in the fragrant harbor and mellow insects purrings in rhythm with the cacophony of the great city!  What a an exotic adventure.

Kai Tak was Hong Kong’s airport then and being American born and bred, I knew nothing about investing aboard.

That was my first airplane trip, first time out of Oregon. Portland to Vancouver, Tokyo to Hong Kong.  I melted in my heavy woolen blazer, was weary and afraid but excited too. An incredible global investing journey had begun… and continues to this day.

Here I was, 21 years old.

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Here is the first stamp in that first passport. That stamp you might say was my first international investment.

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That first stamp makes a point by the way about how to enter and initially work or invest in a country.  That first stamp was issued May 2, 1968 and allowed me to stay in Hong Kong until June 2, 1968.

I worked in Hong Kong for quite some time on tourist stamps… coming in for a month at a time.   I was developing sales teams in Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Indonesia, Indonesia, Singapore and the Philippines at the same time so a month was plenty of time before I exited.

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Here is one of my first sales teams… this one in Hong Kong led by John So Kwok Kee (far left – you can guess which one I am).

I built teams from the north in Japan down through Thailand.  One of the salesmen we worked with in Thailand, Brian Tracy, returned later to Canada and has had great success in the sales education field.

Starting a business, investigation or residence with a tourist visa is a pretty good idea. This is usually the easiest, most efficient, practical way to begin so you can be sure what you are doing and how you’ll develop a more permanent stay if you want one.  In many cases… such as mine… a permanent tourist system is simply the easiest and best.

I began my business in Hong Kong this way and for years I also lived and worked in England on tourist stamps before obtaining my permanent residence there.

A reader recently sent me this note about Ecuador tourist visas.

“Gary, When I was staying at the Hotel, someone mentioned that you do not
have a residential visa for Ecuador.  Is this correct?  How do you
spend as much time in the country as you do?”

Here is my rely:

“I spend less than 6 months a year in Ecuador.

“We have heard from others who come stay for 90 days, leave for just a day or two (especially just over the border in Peru or Colombia)  and come right back that there are difficulties.

“Our experience is that every time we come to Ecuador we are given a 90
day visa.  However we do not stress this system. For example we may stay 70 days and then be away for weeks or even a month or so.  Then return for 20 days or so.. then leave for another month etc.   The immigration officers look carefully at the total number of days by the end of the year and to help them, I keep a list of each day we have arrived and departed and the page number in our passport… so they can efficiently see we have not been in more than 180 days the maximum allowed on a T-3 tourist visa).

Be careful not to overstay. One reader reported that having done so he was denied entrance upon his return and were not allowed to return to Ecuador for one year.

We have a full report on Ecuador visas and an immigration attorney who helps our Ecuador Living subscribers.

I am also preparing a report for Ecuador Living subscribers to answer this question from a reader yesterday.

“Hi Gary, Wonderful timing, we had tickets to fly from Guadalajara to Quito yesterday, but were stymied by the fact that Ecuador (and Peru) are refusing passengers from Mexico.  We understand Ecuador’s borders  will be closed for a month to non-residents flying in from Mexico.

We had thought about flying back to the States and then flying to Ecuador, but an electronic scan of our passports would show we’d been in Mexico and we’re not sure what would happen.  Any insights?   Thanks!

You can obtain these reports and answers as an Ecuador Living subscriber. Learn how to subscribe to Ecuador Living here.

Back to Hong Kong.  I began there selling US mutual funds.

When arriving there 41 years ago there is no way I could have known how exciting the next decades would be, how much information, facts, figures, ideas and insights on how to invest globally would be gained. Had I known the mistakes to be made I would probably have run!

Then I moved east again to England and Europe… trying many things.

Thankfully all the trials, tortures and errors were mitigated by much fun and an earnest endeavor to live right and learn.

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Here is a newspaper clipping of me  with a business partner in my London office on Artillery Row selling square inches of Graceland… not really a very good idea.

Later I imported Rolls Royces and Bentleys from England to the US… a better idea.

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One goal at this site is to share basics of global investing and living an international life learned over these 41 years. Global investing has changed so much during this time and is changing even faster now.  I am continually forced to rearrange my thinking strategy and tactics at a faster pace.

We offered health courses at our North Carolina farm. Here I am with our son, Jake, with one tactic we taught… a morning dip in a cold creek after exercise… yes that is snow on the banks and no… this not surprisingly did not sell very well either.

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Our food as medicine courses taught by Merri in her teaching kitchen at the farm had better attendance!

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For almost 15 years now we have been conducting courses in Ecuador. Here I am this year in the meeting room at the Cotacachi museum next to Meson de las Flores on an Ecuador export tour.

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This continual evolution has helped Merri and me, our readers and our income continually grow… through good times and bad.

Yesterday April 2009 for example ended with anoter record month for our internet sales.  Our 2009 sales (April month on month) were up 48.01% over April 2008, which in turn were up 24.04% over April 2007 sales.

Our sales in the first four months of 2009 were up 81.75% over Jan through April 2008 which was up 26.20% over 2007.  Learn how to develop an internet business that can grow like this here.

The reason we have survived and progressed amidst this never ending update is that the little stuff shifts and evolves, but the fundamentals remain immutable.

Investing globally is not a panacea, but expanded horizons are. Life is a trip and we have an entire globe to enjoy the ride.

Two years ago on May 2, 2007, I wrote:

History suggests that this is a time when chances are increased for panic and sudden drops in investment markets. Investors who have proven themselves nervous short term thinkers are highly leveraged, in thin, over purchased markets that are easily sinkable boats treading the dangerous waters of May though October when tradition says the currents will most likely be treacherous and surrounded with lots of storms.

Now, that this risk has proven true, history also suggests that we have a once in a life time opportunity.

The way to cash in on this incredible opportunity is the same way I suggested avoiding the collapse two years ago. I wrote then: “One way to get good international investments is to take a long term, expansive international view.”

My first trip abroad 41 years ago was significant because 1968 was the beginning of a new era for world stock markets. When I arrived in Hong Kong the world of investing was dominated by Wall Street. That was about to end. 1968 was the year when the Hong Kong Stock Market began to explode upwards along with Tokyo’s market. What a ride!

The Heng Seng Index was then 100 and rose to 18,000. Anyone who steadily committed money to this market then made a fortune.

I can sum up my investment basic investing and advice in seven sentences.

#1: 1970s. Invest in real estate, gold, silver Japan, Germany, Switzerland and Hong Kong.

#2: 1980s. Invest in real estate, the Tigers, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore Malaysia and South Korea as well.

#3: 1990s. Invest in real estate South America (which led me to Ecuador).

#4: 2000s. Invest real estate, China, India and emerging markets including Ecuador real estate.

#5: Always have an expansive view.

#6: Use stop losses during peaks.

#7: Have an international investment view. Never overextend. Don’t trade too much, just hang on.

This philosophy has reaped millions for Merri and me. Had we been more expansive, we would have an extra $20 million or so.  However our conservative approach to business and investing also protected us during the recent melt down of 2007 and 2008.

This may be time to begin taking advantage of the recovery. Panic is subsiding but values are still high. The huge excesses of the US and other government’s will at some stage begin to seriously erode the purchasing power of currencies.

I remain highly diversified from a currency point of view.  Here is my current currency breakdown in my liquid portfolio that represents 43% of my total portfolio.

An excerpt from a recent Multicurrencyinvesting.com lesson explains why when I wrote about the currency distribution of investments:

Here is my currency distribution:

Danish kroner    24%
Euro                     24%
British Pound      8%
US Dollar            12%
Canadian Dollar 3%
Norway kroner   4%
NZ Dollar             3%
Sweden kroner    7%
Brazil real             3%
Hungary Forint   6%
Turkey Try            6%

With more than a third of my liquid position in Danish, Swedish and Norwegian kroner, my Scandinavian  position is seriously over weighted in terms of global market size.

One reason is because these are such small countries located on the sea.  This means that their histories are composed of  travel and trade.

A nation’s heritage reflects in the value of its currency strength. This fact helped me answer this question from a reader.

“Gary, Will  future strength in DKK be bad for equities denominated in that currency?”

Here is my reply.

Most of the Danish companies you would buy are global companies.

Because Denmark is such a small market any large Danish company is doing most of its business out of Denmark  so a lot of their success depends on the type of business business and where the company actually manufactures and sells its products.

Plus look at the margins built into the product.

One benefit in Scandinavia is their very highly educated population. A recent Time magazine article shows that Finland (not Scandinavian but Baltic and Finland’s currency is the euro – otherwise I would have Finmark in my portfolio as well) ranked number one for educational performance of 15 year olds in math. Denmark was number 10, Sweden number 15 and Norway number 23… all ahead of the US (number 25).

Finland was number one for reading performance of 15 years olds as well.  Sweden number seven, Norway number 10 and Denmark number 16. The US was number 15.

This means that the products produced in these nations will tend to be high value.

For example, Novo Norsk makes insulin.  I suspect that the margins are substantially high.

Ditto for novozymes that makes enztymes for environmental purification.  These are firms where there is likely to be a great deal of value added into their product.

Vestas, makes wind turbines. and may be more affected by a strong kroner if they do a lot of manufacturing in Denmark but are having and sales in the US and especially if their competitors manufacture in the US or other countries where the currency is weak.

I am updating the value of major and emerging markets now at multicurrencyinvesting.com and will be revaluing our green and Danish portfolios in upcoming lessons.  You can subscribe to our Multi Currency Portfolios Course here.

I have increased my Ecuador real estate to 22% of my total property.  The balance is in US property and I am looking to add more US property now in Florida and or Savannah.

If you have real estate in central Florida or Savannah that you would like to swap for real estate in Ecuador… let me know.

I have held a high cash position for over a year but now agree with Warren Buffet who recently wrote about business and opportunity:

Clinging to cash equivalents or long-term government bonds at present yields is almost certainly a terrible policy if continued for long. Holders of these instruments, of course, have felt increasingly comfortable – in fact, almost smug – in following this policy as financial turmoil has mounted. They regard their judgment confirmed when they hear commentators proclaim “cash is king,” even though that wonderful cash is earning close to nothing and will surely find its purchasing power eroded over time.

Now is the time to convert cash into investments that will appreciate with the loss of cash’s loss of purchasing power… stocks… commodities… real estate or your own business.

This leaves all of us with a lot to do after 41 years of a global life.

I feel healthier and more energetic then 41 years ago.   Maybe I am not wiser… but I am more experienced and seem in a better position then when I took that first trip.

Merri and I look forward to the next 41 years… and we look forward to sharing them with you!

Gary

This is the schedule of Gary our 2009 Ecuador information tours, courses and seminars.

May 16-17 Ecuador Coastal Tour

May 20-21 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

May 22-24. Ecuador Amazon Herbal Tour

June 12-14 Shamanic Mingo Tour

June 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

June 18-21 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 4-8  Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.