For the time being highly leveraged debt obligations seem to have come to an end. Large independent investment banks may have come to an end for now. The idea of a balanced budget may have come to an end a long time ago. However, the world is not coming to an end.
If anybody out there thinks that the times we live in come close to the Dark Ages, the American Revolution, the Civil War, World Wars I or II, or the Great Depression, then they are wimps who know nothing about history or true misery.
Last week when General Electric (NYSE: GE) closed at $6.66 I got an email from a friend reminding me of the sign of the devil. Then one of my staff said somebody told them the world would be coming to an end in a couple of years according to the old and new testaments, Finally on the same day someone informed me that Nostradamus predicted that the world will come to an end in 2012 -- to all of them I say poppycock!
There are many companies with huge cash flow, no debt and piles of cash on hand. Here are four examples that come to mind that do not think the world is coming to an end either: American Eagle Outfitters (NYSE: AEO), Apple Computer (NASDAQ: AAPL), Cisco Systems (NASDAQ: CSCO), and Intuitive Surgical (NASDAQ: ISRG) and ISRG is buying back shares like crazy!
For anyone that truly believes the world is coming to an end you might consider selling naked puts deep into 2012 for highly speculative strike prices and pocket the millions of dollars you will take in today so that you can party with the cash all the way to the end -- although I do not recommend this as a wise strategy -- you would be helping the economy, so go for it.
Sheldon Liber is the CEO of a small private investment company and the principal for design and research at an architecture & planning firm. He writes the columns Chasing Value and Serious Money. Disclosure: I own shares of AEO, GE, and ISRG with open options in GE as well.