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Sokol's personal portfolio...


elltel
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What drove Sokol's decision to invest so much in this medium size bank that's relatively solid all things considered?  That's obvious.  Location! Location! Location!  The bank's located in an upscale county in the Washington DC exurbs.  His first purchase was made two weeks after the Democrat Party victory in November, 2008.  Since then, there has been great inflation of staffing and wages and hiring at the highest levels of government, not to mention the army of lobbyists that has descended on Washington to fight or support the massive spending bills that have been passed or are in the works.  For example, one department, transportation, I think, had 17 staffers making $150K or more during the Bush administration; now there are reportedly 1500 staffers in that department making that much or more!  I have a friend who is a consultant to nonprofits funded by the US goverment. His organization had been getting a 4% rakeoff of the take.  Now they are being told by the government that they should charge an 8% rakeoff!

 

Bottom line: this may soon be the strongest residential growth area in the US!  My opinion of David Sokol's investing skill has now gone up a big notch!

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I live in the Washington Metro area and I wouldn't say Loundon County is all that. It does have some rich people, but it is a bit far from DC. Most politicans and lobbyist live in DC, outskirts like Montgomery County, MD and Fairfax County, VA.

 

I believe the former wife of BET's CEO Johnson lives there.  There's a lot of banks in the DC area, but Middleburg Bank doesn't ring a bell. I have friends that say Middleburg, VA will be "the place to be" in the future. I'm betting 10-20 years from now.

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For example, one department, transportation, I think, had 17 staffers making $150K or more during the Bush administration; now there are reportedly 1500 staffers in that department making that much or more!

 

17 to 1500????  Can you give us a reference? 

 

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For example, one department, transportation, I think, had 17 staffers making $150K or more during the Bush administration; now there are reportedly 1500 staffers in that department making that much or more!

 

17 to 1500????  Can you give us a reference?  

 

 

 

Sorry, can't cite chapter and verse. It was a newspaper article in a major paper, I think.  To clarify : the department didn't necessarily hire 1500 new people at that level.  Apparently, Bush had a cap on Inflation of GS pay grades or the number of slots allowed above $150K of pay.  This meant that a lot of CS employees were bumping against the ceiling.  The new administration apparently took these caps off or perhaps gave raises that bumped pay up substantially.  The article was vague about exactly how this was done, and I didn't dig deeper.  Sorry I'm not more helpful.

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I live in the Washington Metro area and I wouldn't say Loundon County is all that. It does have some rich people, but it is a bit far from DC. Most politicans and lobbyist live in DC, outskirts like Montgomery County, MD and Fairfax County, VA.

 

I believe the former wife of BET's CEO Johnson lives there.  There's a lot of banks in the DC area, but Middleburg Bank doesn't ring a bell. I have friends that say Middleburg, VA will be "the place to be" in the future. I'm betting 10-20 years from now.

 

I lived in DC several years ago when I went to school there, but I didn't have wheels and rarely got out into the suburbs.  We now live in an apparently similar exurb county of another major metro area.  In the late 1980's, a bank in our area With solid backing started up at the bottom of another real estate cycle.  It prospered as the economy picked up. A few years later, it was bought out by a growing regional bank.  By 1999 it was a 12 bagger when we sold our shares.  As they say, past performance is no guarantee of future performance.  But this happy experience suggests that Sokol has sniffed out an investment with good potential entirely on his own.  :)

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This sounds like idle chatter to me:  "think, had 17 staffers making $150K or more during the Bush administration; now there are reportedly 1500 staffers in that department making that much or more! "

 

One thing the Bushies did was cap the government payroll and farm out the work to "consultants", thus the "private" sector was doing the work, (read overpaid consultants).

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This sounds like idle chatter to me:  "think, had 17 staffers making $150K or more during the Bush administration; now there are reportedly 1500 staffers in that department making that much or more! "

 

One thing the Bushies did was cap the government payroll and farm out the work to "consultants", thus the "private" sector was doing the work, (read overpaid consultants).

 

 

I found an article that's even more informative than the one I saw a few months ago.  It's in USA Today, Dec 12, 2009: For Feds, More Get 6-Figure Salaries.  Apparently, all that's necessary to give everyone a raise is to give a raise to the boss because under US law, no department staffer can make more than that department head.  Therefore, giving a raise to the boss raises the cap on the salaries at the next level and unleashes the floodgates.  Under Bush only the head of the FAA made more than $170K.  Now more than 1700 people in that department are above that level.

 

Sounds like a great idea for the private sector.  Now let's see . . . If no one at BRK made more than Warren  . . . Now what effect would that have? ?  :)

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Guest misterstockwell

That's insane to have more than 1700 people in FAA making > $170K. So now we have DC Fatcats? This country is going bust in a hurry. I don't think there is any government official worth $170K/year.

 

 

This sounds like idle chatter to me:  "think, had 17 staffers making $150K or more during the Bush administration; now there are reportedly 1500 staffers in that department making that much or more! "

 

One thing the Bushies did was cap the government payroll and farm out the work to "consultants", thus the "private" sector was doing the work, (read overpaid consultants).

 

 

I found an article that's even more informative than the one I saw a few months ago.  It's in USA Today, Dec 12, 2009: For Feds, More Get 6-Figure Salaries.  Apparently, all that's necessary to give everyone a raise is to give a raise to the boss because under US law, no department staffer can make more than that department head.  Therefore, giving a raise to the boss raises the cap on the salaries at the next level and unleashes the floodgates.  Under Bush only the head of the FAA made more than $170K.  Now more than 1700 people in that department are above that level.

 

Sounds like a great idea for the private sector.  Now let's see . . . If no one at BRK made more than Warren  . . . Now what effect would that have? ?  :)

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Guest Bronco

A real pop today in the Middleburg stock.  I was going to buy a small bit to track in my portfolio, but I don't see this as cheap right now.  I set up an alert instead (not that anyone cares).

 

I find it interesting that it pops this much after the Sokol info is released and made widespread.  I guess when BH's future CEO (just my opinion) speaks, people listen.

 

 

 

 

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A real pop today in the Middleburg stock.  I was going to buy a small bit to track in my portfolio, but I don't see this as cheap right now.  I set up an alert instead (not that anyone cares).

 

I find it interesting that it pops this much after the Sokol info is released and made widespread.  I guess when BH's future CEO (just my opinion) speaks, people listen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yup!  Maybe even some people on this board listen!  :)

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For what it's worth, over the last two years, the average FAA staffer went from earning $109,000 to $121,000.  This is for a staff of 43,000 full time equivalent employees.  Some people obviously work more.  So, when you say, that the number of staffers making over X has jumped since the Democrats came in, that means nothing to me, you, or anyone.  I can tell you the budget has gone up with inflation.  I can't comment if 5% of their staff now makes over some threshold, although it wouldn't be surprising given how close 170k is to average earnings (especially since some people work more than full-time).  I can't comment on what anyone in the FAA does, whether they deserve it or not, because frankly, i don't know.  And either do you.

 

What i do know is you're not even willing to take a few minutes to delve into some possible, more reasonable explanations for the statements you throw out.  Something better than "Washington gone crazy" . . .

 

 

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Guest dealraker

Two things on Middleburg:

I already owned it and had bought on the way down at $15 so....

 

But the noninterest income--- I think is going to continue to climb based on the business model.

 

And the noninterest expense is going to fall quite a bit.  I'll update on that when I have time.

 

My belief when I bought it was that it would sustain a high return on equity based on the businesses it is in other than net interest margin and that it would sell for 2 tangible book.

 

My wife is from the area and I knew about the business for some time.

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