The Altucher Report, COVID-19 Population Migration, Talking Stocks

Jason Hartman’s guest in this episode is James Altucher. To start the show, they compared the severity of the pandemic from those living in New York and New Jersey to the rest of the nation. Then they talk about the economy, stimulus, SPY, and RVT, and why we should prepare for supply shock. Jason and James also discuss James’ preferences on stocks and his 40 alternatives to college.

Announcer 0:01
This show is produced by the Hartman media company. For more information and links to all our great podcasts, visit Hartman media.com.

Announcer 0:12
Welcome to the American monetary associations podcast where we explore how monetary policy impacts the real lives of real people. And the action steps necessary to preserve wealth and enhance one’s lifestyle.

Jason Hartman 0:30
Hey, it’s my pleasure to welcome a returning guests back to the show. And that is James all toucher. When he was on a couple of years ago, we had a great conversation about his book at the time, a concept I very much support, which is choose yourself. And since then, he’s developed a huge podcast following the ultra show. He’s a former hedge fund manager knows a lot about the economy. And he’s been looking into the epidemiology of the COVID-19 situation. He also lives in New York City. You know, he’s the author of a bunch of books, I won’t even go through all the titles, but there’s, there’s so many he’s prolific. Anyway, it’s great to have James altucher. Back on the show, James, how you doing?

James Altucher 1:09
Jason? Thanks so much. Thanks for having me back on and I super appreciate it. It’s, it’s too bad. It’s It’s such unfortunate circumstances that bring us back together on the show, but it is what it is.

Jason Hartman 1:21
Yeah, it is what it is. That’s for sure. But you know, there’s a lot of opportunities right now to and whenever there’s a crisis, you know, like the Chinese say, crisis and opportunity are the same thing. Their thing is literally translated crisis is opportunity riding the dangerous wind? It’s kind of interesting. I didn’t know that. Yeah.

James Altucher 1:40
Is that like the same ancient curse? May you live in interesting times? Because it’s, that’s a little different.

Jason Hartman 1:45
But they used to say that a lot during the Great Recession, for sure. And so these are interesting times, you know, being in New York City, man, you are, you’re just on the forefront of it. So tell us kind of the big picture of what’s going on what you’re thinking, what you’re interviewing a lot of people just what’s the Zeitgeist in the in the James altucher world right now?

James Altucher 2:06
Yeah, it’s interesting. You bring up New York City, in that between New York City and New Jersey, those two areas alone are more cases and sadly, deaths than the other 48 states combined. So my view when I hear the news, and when I walk out and see what’s happening on the street, I imagine it’s probably very different from, you know, somebody from other parts of the country where maybe the shutdown is not as restrictive or maybe there’s just not as many cases or not as many deaths. Like, you know, you take Georgia, for instance, right next to Florida, which is a reopening or reopening a big portion of their economy today. And they’ve had, what 800 deaths out of a population of 10 million, Georgia itself has an economy in the 10s of billions. So, you know, it’s a different perspective. Here everyone is, I just feel this atmosphere of anxiety and fear and stress and nobody wants to read, he’s locked down. And there was all these panicky headlines weeks ago. Oh, the hospitals were about to get overrun. So Trump said the, what is it the USS comfort that Javits Center got turned into a hospital, the I myself visited the 10 hospitals on Central Park, just to just to see what’s going on, they were empty, all of these places were empty, they never did overwhelm the hospital system.

Jason Hartman 3:30
That’s great. So they flattened the curve in time that we didn’t overwhelm the hospitals. And interestingly, you say that, James, because being in New York, certainly you know, about the conspiracy theories that are starting to float like crazy. And, you know, one is where they’re getting people to crowdsource video of hospitals in their neighborhoods. Right. And, and you see, like these, you know, barricades set up for people to get in line, and nobody’s there. Now, I don’t know how real or fake this stuff is. I just know it’s interesting. thoughts. Yeah, I

James Altucher 4:02
mean, before the peak, I went out to do a little bit of that crowdsourcing myself just to see what’s going on. Yep. There was nobody anywhere. And I spoke to people who were coming in and out of the hospital, I spoke to doctors, I spoke to priests who are coming in and out. And like, thank God, I’m not I’m not even saying like, I see you were wrong. It’s nothing. like okay, they took a worst case scenario, and they wanted to be cautious and every precaution and that’s good. But I do think though, this speaks to the larger issue of we made, and I say we the the government and the population made a huge, huge, trillion dollar multi trillion dollar decisions off of mathematical models, that not once were correct. They weren’t even close to correct, right. Like back in January, early February. There were newspaper articles saying around the world. 140 million people might die. That was The first article I ever saw about this, and then, you know, I get a report out of either Imperial or Harvard or both that said there would be millions of deaths in the US. And, you know, up to 10 million deaths in the US was the first number I heard. And then it got kept coming down, kept coming down. And every single model was wrong. March 25, I, ah, me came out with a model that said, there would be 60,000 hospitalizations in New York City alone, by April 1, just six days later, well, six days later, there were 12,000 hospitalizations, they were 80% off and the model they had made just six days earlier. And these were all the scientists we were relying on to make multi trillion dollar decisions about shutting down people’s livelihoods and careers and and you know, all the deaths and stress and collateral fatalities that ended up resulting, you know, if you have if you’re in stage three, liver cancer, and you wanted to see if you had stage four, that was considered an elective procedure, so you couldn’t do it. So you still can’t do it. So this is creating a problem for the entire system. And everyone will say, oh, you’re choosing the stock market over your grandma’s life, right? No, that’s not it at all. Like people are suffering like there’s calls to the Bronx offer child abuse hotlines are six times higher. You know,

Jason Hartman 6:16
even Indiana suicide hotlines are 800% higher for suicide hotlines.

James Altucher 6:22
It’s It’s insane. So I really just who knows what the right decision was, but, you know, everybody was scared. But I wish the media hadn’t fanned the flames of that hysteria, because hysteria now is turning into history. And, you know, hopefully we climb out of this. But But yeah, so that’s a long answer. But also in terms of the economy, I think, you know, we’re going from a period of great uncertainty to a little bit more certainty, which is that the economy will reopen the stimulus packages now to have been passed, plus the Federal Reserve’s stimulus, and the virus seems to have peaked in the US. And maybe they’ll be a segue, maybe not, that’s part of the unknowns. But we know some things now for certain that we didn’t know even like three or four weeks ago. So that’s a good thing. But now going into this new abnormal, I’ll call it is there’s a lot of uncertainty, too, which is what industries will collapse, because there’s going to be a few. And, you know, we don’t know about the second wave of the virus. But now that we have a lot of data about the virus, hopefully we can say, Well, okay, we don’t have to shut down the entire economy this time. And we’ll see. But, you know, there’s definitely been a lot of interesting data about the economy.

Jason Hartman 7:31
Yeah, no question about it. You know, I mean, going forward, first off, what type of recovery Do you think it’ll be? And before you answer, I’ll tell you what I think. So, you know, we’ve all heard, is it going to be a V shaped recovery? That’s the hopeful picture, is it going to be a you with a big ugly trough? Is it going to be an L shaped recovery, I think it’s going to be kind of like a modified square root sign, meaning that the square root sign, usually, you know, it goes down, then it goes up higher, I think this one’s going to be down, it’s going to be down in the V, and then up, but lower than the start. I think this is a lasting issue, you know, it’s going to have a huge hangover on the economy. And I think the economy is going to shrink, I think there’s going to be a form of PTSD, I hate to say, where travel isn’t going to resume, it’s going to be a slow slog to get back to the new normal. I mean, there’s certainly been a lot of opportunities. I’m not being like, negative, I just think there’s, you know, there’s always a lot of repositioning, right when, when something like this happens, but your thought,

James Altucher 8:42
I mean, look, this is a bigger disaster than and I’m not even talking about the pandemic, the economic shutdown is a bigger disaster than what happened in the economy after 911. What happened in the economy after 2008 2009, which was a pretty big disaster, by the way, I mean, no question. The financial system collapsed. And they had to bail it out. There was no cash left, and they had to put cash into the system. And 911 the country feared it was under attack. And certainly things were affected permanently like like travel and and airports and our relationships with the Middle East and so on. And banking kind of changed forever after 2008 2009. I mean, it was

Jason Hartman 9:21
bad. If you walk into a bank now, with a couple million bucks, instead of saying, Hey, you know, we’re glad to have you. And by the way, here’s your free toaster. It’s like, oh, we’re suspicious. You might be a terrorist or money launderer. It’s just totally the Patriot Act is, you know, the know your customers. It’s just changed everything.

James Altucher 9:40
Yeah.

Jason Hartman 9:41
It’s like, later on, you know,

James Altucher 9:43
yeah. And a lot of things are gonna change now. And I think some of them we could probably guess about and some of them, we can’t, but, you know, it’s funny, just debate of the different shapes. I think I’m more in your camp about how I see more of a W than a V, right. So you know, We go up a little, which is what’s already happened, we’re kind of like at the peak of the W, and then we’re gonna have to go down again, because as long as you keep seeing insanity happen, then those are all canaries in the coal mine. So like what happened with the oil futures contracts two days ago going negative, that’s never happened before. That’s a little bit of insanity. Like I even see experts being quoted newspaper articles, talking about, oh, the physical delivery of oil, nobody wants to take your oil. These were cash settled contracts, there was no oil involved. It was just, it was just a big, insane thing that happened. But as long as there’s insanity happening, there’s no way that we have the enough certainty in the market to just go straight up from here, no matter what the stimulus does. Second, the stimulus is hitting, but there’s nothing to hit the economy now is a is like a patient on life support. This is a band aid at best, and you have to have a living patient that’s walking around before the stimulus can work. So we don’t quite know, for sure, we know what’s going to happen that the economy is gonna wake up, but we don’t know when and then what how many phases.

Jason Hartman 11:04
And by the way, if I just keep your thought there, please don’t don’t forget. But what you’re kind of referring to is when we’ve been talking a lot about this rare malady of supply demand shock, you know, which sort of was pronounced in the 70s. And so we’ve seen demand destruction, obviously. But I think we’re gonna see supply destruction too, because for example, oil is a, you know, a great example, right? Look at this prediction, and maybe totally wrong, of course. But, you know, now we have demand destruction. And there’s like, gluts of oil and oils cheap. And, you know, they’re, they’re having tankers store oil, that they’re not moving the oil, they’re just storing the oil, right? It’s a totally weird situation. But now these oil companies go out of business. And when things do recover, there’s a lot less supply. So same with the airlines, like I did, I did a Google flights search today. And I’ve been looking at flights just interesting. I don’t want to go anywhere. I’m just doing it as a study, sir. And, and to go, I live in Palm Beach, Florida. So to go from Miami to LA x, which is like an easy route, you know, take a direct flight. It’s really expensive. In fact, looking at the chart on Google flights of the last 6075 days, it’s at the highest price it’s been. And if you looked, if you looked at just three weeks ago for that flight, it was dirt cheap, okay, four or five weeks ago, cheap, right? Because you have lots of supply and no demand. And now that the airplane the airlines have grounded a lot of their flights and canceled the routes, you have, you know, a small amount of demand, but a lot less supply, too. So it sounded like you were sort of alluding to that. And I just wanted to bring that out as a discussion point.

James Altucher 12:50
Yeah, I mean, with oil like so I

Jason Hartman 12:52
and not oil in particular, just generally widgets, but oil is an example. Go ahead. Yeah.

James Altucher 12:58
Yeah, I mean, I think I think because it’s such a weird thing. This, this lack of demand is not based on where the economy was heading a few months ago, it’s it’s this forced lack of demand, because we’re all being told to stay at home, which I’m not questioning in one way or the other. That’s not what this is about. But so I own part of a private oil company, and we just stopped producing the oil, like, we realized there’s not going to be any demand. And there was no reason to pump more oil out. And we’ll start pumping again, when there’s demand, I think that’s what most oil companies are going to be doing. So it’s, I don’t know, if the oil companies are gonna go out of business someplace as well, like, you know, the average small business like a restaurant only had 16 days of cash in the bank, they might not have gotten their small business loans. Hardly any small businesses actually got the small business loans. Yeah, a lot of storefront businesses are gonna go out of business, a lot of small mom and pop businesses, sadly, are gonna go out of business. I don’t know how you really avoid that they’re trying to, I mean, the premise of the $2.2 trillion stimulus package and then an additional 450 billion as of yesterday, the premise is that two and a half trillion dollars of money is not going to be spent this quarter. So that’s what they’ve calculated, you know, give us that number. Again. It’s what well, like every quarter, yeah, the GDP of a quarter GDP of a year is about $20 trillion. Every quarter, that’s 5 trillion. And they kind of think there’s about 40 to 50%. Yeah, so and this is the government This is what I’m getting. This was on my podcast with the I had on my podcast the other day, the deputy chairman of the St. Louis Federal Reserve, so he was telling me his reasoning is that between two and 3 trillion would be withdrawn from the economy because we’re all not spending money while in our houses. And so they created two to $3 trillion of stimulus. And so it’s supposedly going to replace what we lost in terms of money. But again, all that stimulus is gonna end up just sitting in a bank. And so the velocity of money needs an economy to be flourishing, otherwise, people Spend, they just keep the money in the bank, and the money doesn’t have the intended effect on the economy. So to your point, you could put, you’d have to put in five or 6 trillion, if economy’s truly gonna slow down, you have to put in trillions more to make up the same amount that last year’s 2 trillion was. So the point is, is that if if we do have this PTSD, then you’re right, we’re going to see much more of a slowdown in the data in q3 and q4 than we expected, it won’t be the V shaped surge that some economists and government officials are predicting. Now. We don’t really know, though. I mean, the one One theory is like you said, we’re gonna have this PTSD. We’re not, we’re going to realize you don’t need to go out as much we’re gonna enjoy staying at home. On the other hand, it’s sort of like, we’re drug addicts, and we were addicted to the economy and spending money. And now we’re in drug rehab. Yeah, definitely in drug rehab to put it. Typically, in drug rehab, we stopped using drugs. And but then when we get out of rehab, we start hanging out with our old friends that go in our old Hangouts. And we start using again we relax. Yeah, right. So So theoretically, we could relapse. Also, I think this is one of the uncertain things. I could say, Now, I’m never getting on a plane again, or I’m never going to a restaurant again. But when I can, and my wife wants to go to a restaurant, I’ll do it. I’m not and I own, I actually own a bar. So I hope people return to bars, but we’ll see a dirty, disgusting petri dish of disease like a bar, right? Like the bar I own at least Yeah, and but I think it’s an unknown, and we’ll see. But I’m more inclined to think just the mechanics of it is more like a W. And although I do think the stimulus will be enough, not necessarily the short term stimulus that Congress is passing, although that will help. But the Federal Reserve stimulus, which is cutting the interest rates, buying mortgage backed securities, buying corporate debt, that’s gonna that that’s almost going to be forced to lift the economy. But people don’t realize federal stimulus, even this extreme doesn’t kick in for a good six to 12 months, at least. Yeah, so we’ve got a while before that kicks in.

Jason Hartman 17:06
So we’ll say you made a great metaphor there of the patient that’s on life support, right? And so, you know, you can pump money, but pumping money, you know, it doesn’t solve every problem. It’s it’s the usual tool that the Federal Reserve goes to, it’s there, it’s the sort of their go to thing, you know, in fact, it’s just funny 911, you know, great recession. Now, you know, whenever you have like a g7 meeting, the whole thing is like, How much money do we pump into the system? Right? That’s always that’s always the solution. But in this case, it doesn’t totally, it’s not the panacea, it is sometimes, right,

James Altucher 17:46
right. Like in 2000. Basically, we’re following the playbook of 2009 2008 2009. So the Federal Reserve over the past two, three decades has gotten a lot more sophisticated about the ways they can help the economy so so back in the 90s, Alan Greenspan would just cut rates, and that would do it after 911, there were some stimulus checks, and there was mostly just cutting rates. But after 2008 2009, it wasn’t just cutting rates, it was also encouraging banks to have excess reserves by raising the interest rates that the Fed would pay banks on those excess excess reserves. It was they started buying, you know, mortgage backed securities and going out a little bit further than just treasury bills. And they’re doing more of that. Now. They’re doing the same, but more now. And, again, you’re right. if nobody’s buying goods, it does nothing to help the guy. It does. Zero. Yeah. So somebody has the economy has to move first. And is this stimulus enough? Are the right people getting it? Was this the right macro economic theory? I don’t know. This is a giant experiment. 2 trillion just like to replace spending? I don’t know if that we’ll see if it works. I mean, it’s probably better than nothing. And then you have we have massive deflation right now on some things, but like you pointed out, depending on how the how efficient the industry is, that might be inflation. And then, of course, structurally, does all this increase in dollars result in inflation? It’s unclear right now. The rest of the world buys our dollars. And that’s a deflationary pressure. But I do think specifically, you’re gonna see things like commercial real estate has to have a mini financial crisis after this. We weren’t going to go. I mean,

Jason Hartman 19:25
you’re saying many, I think it’s going to be a maxi crisis.

James Altucher 19:29
Right? I I guess I agree. I’m just using the word being optimistic.

Jason Hartman 19:33
Yeah.

James Altucher 19:34
It’s like, I don’t want to say to my wife, why don’t you get the maxi pads instead of a mini like, like, don’t do that, like, but yeah, I mean, what’s gonna happen when we work goes out of business, which is 100% chance, right? Right. Like the average they’re the biggest real estate renter for commercial real estate in New York City and other cities. So if you have a building and suddenly eight floors or your renter just disappears, right? And you got to clean it

Jason Hartman 19:58
out. Find another renter, and they We work was already a scam. You know before this Oh yeah. That was a smart decision. So poor Adam Newman he’s only going to be a millionaire not a billionaire. Yeah, he

James Altucher 20:12
pulled out like 700 million so he’ll he’ll he’ll survive. But I don’t know if he could feed his kids in a few years, but we’ll see. But what are all these real estate commercial real estate companies going to do? They live on borrowed money, and now borrow time and they’re not going to survive. It’s the entire industry is going to change. Airlines, despite a bailout are probably going to go out of business cruise lines. I don’t know if Las Vegas is going to be able to stay in business. Are you going to Las Vegas anytime soon after this? like would you even slam that?

Jason Hartman 20:41
That’s the PTSD kind of concept that I’m talking about? Like, yeah, you know, I mean, this may sound weird, but, and I don’t mean to minimize the quarantines and the depressive effect it’s having on on people’s psychology. But personally, for a guy who jumped on a plane two, three times a month. I love it. I just love not owning an airline ticket, having no plans. I’m enjoying this time of just being a homebody, I actually really quite like it. I know, there’s lots of this everywhere. You know what? Well, they drive to the beach. Yeah, I’m in Palm Beach, Florida. So they just reopened the beaches and I have not been yet. I don’t know why they closed them in the first place. I can see closing them down for spring break parties and stuff. Sure. But just a regular beach. That’s not part of the scene. That seems sort of silly to me that they closed.

James Altucher 21:31
Yeah. And look, there’s a lot of evidence that vitamin D and then the sunshine help you get the virus, and kids need to go outside and run around and

Jason Hartman 21:40
play question. No question. You

James Altucher 21:42
know, Central Park here is is I don’t want to say it’s crowded. But there’s a lot of people there even right this moment, and there’s appropriate social distancing, and masks

Jason Hartman 21:50
and so on, as long as people are doing the thing, right. But what I meant to say by that is that is part of the PTSD concept. I think people will get used to and maybe be okay, with a little bit of a simpler life. I admit that right after this is over. It’s kind of like, if you live in a place with inclement weather a lot, the first sunny day, everybody’s out, right? And you know, like, your wife wants to go to a restaurant. Sure I get it. But after a while, I think the new normal will be like a lessening of the demand for that, you know, fewer trips, fewer cruises, fewer restaurants, fewer bars, you know, I mean, people still do it. I just don’t think it’ll be as often.

James Altucher 22:34
Yeah, that could be like look at after 2009. I bet you if we did a Google trend search on minimalism, I you know, and then and then you had the whole Greek Kondo thing and so on. I bet you minimalism really became in vogue after 2009 kind of the, not that it was the death of consumerism, but it was a sickness. And probably a similar thing will happen here. And I think what I’m seeing when I talk to people and who knows if it sticks is that the whole kind of lifestyle influencer, you see on Instagram and takes like, I feel like that’s over and people now are looking for more Mental Health Solutions, stress solutions, spiritual solutions, and how does that translate into the economy? Look, there’s definitely gonna be some cheap stocks out there. Like we’re talking right now over the internet. And bandwidth has increased so much that companies like Netflix and YouTube are saying we’re gonna decrease the bandwidth quality or the bandwidth needs of our videos for a short time because there’s so much demand now,

Jason Hartman 23:34
they did that in Italy, when that first day when the quarantine first happened there.

James Altucher 23:39
Yeah, yeah. And so chipset help for bandwidth or chips that help for gaming or virtual reality, those are gonna skyrocket. And, of course, Amazon’s always gonna do well, Google’s always gonna do well, you know, tech companies will do well, oil companies will bounce back because there will be demand again, for you know, oil fuels, so much of the world economy is you know, even going back to a $30 oil price or $40 oil price, you know, which will happen within a year or two easily, particularly with this stimulus. Well, you know, you have companies like shell Royal Dutch Shell, which have gone from 66 to 32 during this crisis pays a 10% dividend those company and they’re not cutting their dividend anytime soon, right?

Jason Hartman 24:17
Those companies are gonna exist James share your hot stock tips. I almost bought Carnival cruises when it got really cheap. I mean, maybe it still is, but that’s a real risky one, but Exxon’s cheap I mean I’m not even a wall street guy. I like real estate. I think income property is the most historically proven asset class in the entire world. I love that he’s but but you know, I’m actually getting I’m getting greedy I’m getting tempted on the stock market. So So fire away with a couple of tips. So you like shell?

James Altucher 24:48
Yeah, I like shell and you know, again, I think the market as a whole if you want to take a risk. Don’t buy you know, spiders spy which is this ETF that rubber The s&p 500 represents the overall market, I like RVT a little bit better. It’s the Royce value trust, it also represents the entire market, but it’s a closed end fund. So it trades at a significant discount to the assets that I own. So it’s like buying the market at a discount. And because of the current volatility, they’re at a larger than normal discount. So you get the upside of the discount closing. It’s a little bit in the weeds here. But RVT is a better way to buy the whole market is what I’m saying. I like there’s a drone company, AV AV, and drones are going to do good. They’re already testing out drones for delivery now, like anything that was gonna happen in 10 years is gonna happen tomorrow. You know, that’s,

Jason Hartman 25:38
that’s interesting. You say that? Because, you know, one of my favorite economists is Joseph Schumpeter, right? creative destruction. Yeah. And what any crisis does, since Necessity is the mother of invention, is it just brings the future closer to us. We had all the online tools. We had zoom, we had Skype before, but now everybody’s been forced to use them. Even people that really resisted that, you know, a bunch of the mastermind groups I’m in, for example, you know, they’re doing zoom meetings. And I’m thinking, do we really after this is over, do we really need to meet in person again, it’s so much easier to just have a zoom meeting right?

James Altucher 26:14
Now I used to I agree, like, I used to do all my podcasts in person for years and years until this lockdown, right. And now I’m loving doing the podcast remotely, not because I don’t want to see people in person. But it allows me to prepare right up until the very last minute, I don’t have to go anywhere. I could say it’s easier for me to take notes during the podcast, podcasts are just as high quality, it’s easy for me to book guests, actually, because they don’t have to be in the city. Right. So and it shows me I don’t have to be in the city. either. I can be anywhere. Yeah. So yeah, I do think things are gonna change. I do think the stimulus eventually will work. And so I’m hoping we see a mini surge in q3 q4, of this year. And then in 2021, I’m hoping we see the big surge as people finally, you know, start buying real estate again, or start traveling more again. But, you know, I do think there’s too much uncertainty at the moment. And all of there are bargains, I probably wouldn’t dive in. By the way, you know, what’s been interesting, too, is law enforcement. So, in England, there’s been a surge of knife attacks against police, because there’s a little bit of social unrest. And I shouldn’t just say I should say, all countries in the US

Jason Hartman 27:23
or anywhere they have gun control, you get more knife attacks, you know, so right. And

James Altucher 27:27
then there’s a little bit more social unrest right now. And I don’t know, I think, you know, any search that right now I’m out of the markets, completely, I own one stock. So I’m just, I’m not recommending this stock. I’m biased. Which one? So it’s called rap technologies, wr TC, and they introduced a non lethal weapon. And, you know, I don’t really know anything more than anyone about it. But it’s the one stock I own, because I do think the world is moving towards, you know, non lethal police forces for a solution. No, you know, police officers don’t want to wake up in the morning and say, today’s the day I shoot somebody, I really want an alternative between beating someone up and shooting someone and this this rap technologies as a weapon or a device that wraps a cable around you at the speed of sound. And you can’t move it just like Batman. And people, states and countries and governments need need something like this. Yeah. Oh, the one thing I own is I feel economy independent. There’s always going to be a police force, and security guards for stores and so on. And so that’s the one thing I want, but I am looking at drone companies like AV AV, I robot IR bt, and video, the chip maker NVDA, how Alto Networks, whatever their symbol is, I forget Royal Dutch Shell on the oil side, you know, and then I’m just seeing if there’s I don’t, I’m curious what you think I don’t really see any deep deep value stocks yet also, which makes me nervous. Yeah, I

Jason Hartman 28:51
don’t. I’m not thinking like it’s totally time to dive into everything yet. But again, I’m not a stock expert. But I do want to ask you about this. So last week, I interviewed Dottie Herman, the CEO of Douglas, Elliman real estate on the show. And of course, she’s a New Yorker like you she was in the Hamptons when we did the interview. And we talked about money. She’s not

James Altucher 29:12
a New Yorker, by the way. Everybody, everybody says they’re a New Yorker and they all went to the Hamptons, and I’m an I’m a New Yorker. New York City. I’m a New Yorker. I’m right across the street from my bar. I’m here with with the gang. You’re there.

Jason Hartman 29:31
You’re the real deal. Stick it out. Okay. All right.

James Altucher 29:34
All right here.

Jason Hartman 29:34
Yeah. Good deal. So anyway, um,

James Altucher 29:38
he said, Well,

Jason Hartman 29:39
I asked her about my theory that after the lockdowns, lift, will there be a mass migration from high density to low density living. And, you know, again, it could be just 10% of the people that live in high density areas and high density density. By not just New York City, but by anything where you’re typically living in a five storey or more building where you’re forced to take an elevator, and you’re you’re very likely to be using mass transit. Okay. Um, you know, even after there’s a vaccine, better treatments, whatever, I think there is going to be kind of a PTSD a sort of suspicious nature with people that, hey, you know, maybe there’s going to be another virus, you know, there’s, What’s the next one? Will it be SARS again? Will it be, you know, Hey, remember, you know, now everybody’s suddenly watching and learning about the Spanish Flu back in 1918. So, will there be this mass migration like that? And interestingly, she has a self interest. She runs a big New York real estate brokerage, and she says, I think people are moving. I guess on one side, you get a lot of listings, but ultimately, you want people moving into your market to make money long term.

James Altucher 30:56
Well, don’t forget, she sells also in I mean, Douglas, Elliman that the company sells in, or represents people in Westchester, the Hamptons,

Jason Hartman 31:04
New Jersey, the summer, it’s suburbia. Yeah, got it.

James Altucher 31:07
So she she benefits either way. But it’s interesting. She says that. I agree, though, because who’s gonna come out of this day one and say, You know what, I’m gonna finally move to New York City, you’re like, I don’t care, they might have a second wave, and they’ll shut down the whole economy again, and maybe there’ll be riots in the streets. I’m just gonna, I’m just gonna buy and, and furthermore, no one’s gonna say, I can’t wait to fulfill my lifelong dream of starting a pizza restaurant in the middle of Manhattan. Like, they’re just not going to do that. So I agree with you. And there’s gonna and that means there’s gonna be less things to enjoy in New York City and more reasons to move away and not just in the suburbs of New York, but down to Florida. I was I was just looking at real estate prices in Florida.

Jason Hartman 31:49
Come on, come on down. The weather is beautiful. In fact, James, I coined a new term just yesterday to describe Florida. Now note that I’m from California, almost all my life. The Socialist Republic was super high taxes worse than New York, by the way. slightly worse. Yeah. And I moved here two years ago, and I’ve coined a new phrase I call it Florida has luxury, whether luxury whether it’s a new kind of weather, luxury together. Yeah,

James Altucher 32:17
I love Florida weather I love right where you are Palm Beach, that whole area, Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale del Rey, Miami, I like that whole quadrant. But

Jason Hartman 32:28
come down and bring your Missile Command game is that Missile Command behind you

James Altucher 32:31
know, Missile Command is a horizontal box that is defender just Stargate robotron, the more vertical game, you’re

Jason Hartman 32:39
you’re reminding me of being a teenager when I used to play video games all the time. Yeah,

James Altucher 32:43
yeah. That’s why I got this is $300. For that box, you should get it. It’s got 50 games on it. But what I’m hearing from real estate brokers is that the listing prices have not yet changed. But the offers are coming in 20 to 50% lower right now, maybe people think they’re going to get a bargain. And maybe that’s going to be over once the economy reopens. But some of those offers have been accepted as well. And we’re just not seeing the change in listing prices. But but apparently they’re seeing and I don’t know if she had any insight into this, but apparently they see they are seeing the change in in offers out there. But we’ll see if that holds again. It’s one of the unknown unknowns.

Jason Hartman 33:19
Yeah, right. Yes. Yes. Rumsfeld.

James Altucher 33:23
Known unknown matrix.

Jason Hartman 33:25
I love it. Well, he is there anything else you want to share with our audience? You know, just anything I haven’t asked you? I know. Yeah. I mean, you’ve got so many books, I wouldn’t even know where to go with your books. There’s just so many, but I loved choose yourself, the concept that there’s no gatekeeper. And about a year from now, you’ve got another great book about skipping the line? Which I can’t wait to read that one.

James Altucher 33:45
Well, I think I just want to remind people that, that even if there is this PTSD, even if your job seems insecure, or is or it’s over or you were furloughed a little too easily, and you get nervous or this time alone has made you think you don’t really want to go back to your job or career. Just I think there are a lot of opportunities out there. I think the stimulus there is going to be money in the economy. So the stimulus is a very real trillions and trillions of dollars between Congress and the Federal Reserve. We’re talking like six $7 trillion. That’s real money and and the dollar is not going to inflate. So quickly. There will be opportunities when everyone else is scared to kind of step up and change your life if you want or start a business or invest in yourself, maybe don’t buy stocks, maybe start taking a photography class and, you know, change careers or come up with an idea for you know, any kind of business. Well, James actually,

Jason Hartman 34:42
you know, you wrote 40 alternatives to college. Right? Yeah. And you know, what’s interesting about this, too, is that for the smart and ambitious people they’re using this time as a huge self improvement program. You know, they’re either improving their mind they’re taking courses online, they’re exercising and in fact trustingly you know, the schools, the cut the colleges and the universities and just school school has sent everybody home to learn. And I think this is going to cause a collapse in ridiculously high student tuition for colleges, because nobody’s gonna pay 50 grand a year to learn online without getting a college experience and all of that college real estate, because almost every university now is basically a hedge fund real estate investing company. Right, and a branding agency. It’s ridiculous how far they’ve gotten away from their mission. I can’t blame them, though. I mean, I would do it too, if I was there. But you know, all of that college real estate is going to, it’s going to be reused. It’s going to come up for sale, those dorms that can be sold as condos are turned into apartments, or I don’t know what’s gonna

James Altucher 35:49
become ghost towns like, become ghost towns. Yeah, I agree. College is clearly the tide has come in. And the colleges were left standing naked on the beach.

Jason Hartman 35:58
Yeah. The emperor has no clothes. It’s a ripoff. Yeah,

James Altucher 36:02
the college is clearly a scam. Because they like you said they sent everyone home. Yeah. And they were like, Oh, we were kidding. You don’t really need to be on campus to get the college experience is do it all online? I know, don’t look. But don’t look at Coursera, where you have really great teachers teaching up to date stuff or Code Academy or Khan Academy, Khan Academy class or LinkedIn learnings? Yeah, don’t don’t look at those which have really great teachers and stuff. Just keep going to our old out of date textbooks that we charge you $1,000 a book for. And by the way, get the hell out of the dorm rooms, because we got to take those over, but we’re not giving you your money back.

Jason Hartman 36:38
They won’t even refund the money. It’s lievable. What escapism

James Altucher 36:42
what a one possession is nine tenths of the law. We got your money, see you later. So I don’t know why people would be excited about going to college. But you know, we’ll see. Well, we’ll see. I agree with you, though, I think again, it’s one of those things that what would have been a conversation, five to 10 years from now is going to become a conversation tomorrow much sooner, which

Jason Hartman 36:58
is, which is creative destruction. It’s great. And you know, the the bottleneck in the college, I call it the the university debt enslavement complex. Okay, like the military industrial complex, the bottleneck seems to be the accreditation concept, right? You know, like the Khan Academy, or Coursera is not accredited, you can’t get that document, you can’t get that degree. And as soon as they somehow figure out the roundabout to the accreditation thing, I mean, certainly some companies like Google will hire people without a degree now. And that’s awesome. Because there are tons of smart people walking around without degrees, then when you get around the accreditation bottleneck, then I think things really started to work.

James Altucher 37:41
I thought a lot about this. So one thing is you and I know that that accreditation aspect, it doesn’t really make any sense. Like you say, you know, Google’s actually hiring people without degrees. And many people would be willing to take a chance they see you have the skills they’d rather have that than an MIT degree. Sure. But, you know, kids are influenced by their guidance school counselors and their other friends and their peers. They think you need college. It’s really the kids now they think you need college to get a job. Yeah, and it’s not true. But, you know, maybe there’s a business opportunity. Maybe you could you get a panel of experts or whatever educators and you say, these online courses across these different platforms are what we’re gonna accredit, we’re gonna say this is a worthwhile computer science degree. And we’ll verify

Jason Hartman 38:29
if if there’s a, a financial course that James altucher and Ray Dalio endorse, and you have to pass it. A Wall Street firms should hire that person. Right. Yeah.

James Altucher 38:42
And I think I think that is a reasonable business plan, there’s probably going to be some business models, we’re not even aware of now that that are going to be in that category, because remote learning is definitely a thing that’s gonna ramp up. Big time. Yeah. And, you know, I think also, you know, maybe just people won’t care about accreditation, at some point, maybe, you know, which is the other extreme. And the opportunity now is creating more and more online courses. So you know, an online course is fairly easy to set up. It’s a good way to make a living. It’s one of those make money while you sleep things. Yeah. And we all have the capabilities to be expert enough to teach non experts something, right. And so if you just start now, within two years or less, you could have a great online course that you’re teaching and make a lot of money.

Jason Hartman 39:28
Yeah. And just for the record, I want to say that I don’t think College is a scam in and of itself. I just think it’s massively overpriced. You know, that’s all you know, I think if you could work your way through school with a part time job and pay for it, it’d be okay. I have no objection to that. I just think when it increases in price it three or four times the rate of real inflation. That’s a complete scam is increased.

James Altucher 39:51
tuitions have increased faster than inflation every single year for 50 years in a row.

Jason Hartman 39:57
Well, when the government ensures the loans and flooding into the system. You get inflation. What a concept, right? Yeah. Absolutely. James, give out your website.

James Altucher 40:06
It’s James altucher calm or you could find me on Twitter at jL Dutcher or find me on Instagram at Al Dutcher or find me on tik tok at James altucher just started doing my Tick Tock video,

Jason Hartman 40:18
though that just proves beyond the shadow of a doubt, you are hip and cool. You do Tick Tock.

James Altucher 40:27
I hope my kids Listen to this. And they you could tell them that Yeah.

Jason Hartman 40:30
Well have them listen. Definitely that their their dad is hip and cool.

James Altucher 40:34
They’re having me on the show. I really enjoyed it.

Jason Hartman 40:35
Thanks so much for joining us,

James Altucher 40:37
Jason. Thanks so much. Thanks again.

Jason Hartman 40:43
Thank you so much for listening. Please be sure to subscribe so that you don’t miss any episodes. Be sure to check out the show’s specific website and our general website Hartman Mediacom for appropriate disclaimers and Terms of Service. Remember that guest opinions are their own. And if you require specific legal or tax advice, or advice and any other specialized area, please consult an appropriate professional. And we also very much appreciate you reviewing the show. Please go to iTunes or Stitcher Radio or whatever platform you’re using and write a review for the show we would very much appreciate that. And be sure to make it official and subscribe so you do not miss any episodes. We look forward to seeing you on the next episode.

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