True Income

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33 Comments
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DrJoe
Guest
DrJoe
April 2, 2011 4:14 pm

OK, i’ve been a subscriber for close to three months. I buy every recommendation because this is a long term set of investments for me. I am looking for yield and will hold until I’m either told to sell or the bonds mature.

I have 40 years experience in investing in stocks, futures, options. This is my first adventure into bonds. Needless to say, I am beginning to look more at income coming in, than growth, but what intrigued me was the idea that I could get both, and in double digits without trading all the time.

For the record, I have also worked on Wall Street in NYC, and I can tell you that if you’re making a 10% yield or thereabouts with capital gains on top, then you are doing pretty darn good, especially in a “no interest rate environment”.

My only complaint is that the letter is $2400 a year which I think is quite a bit by any standard. Even “Value Line” only charges $500 a year, and they are pretty much top of the heap for stocks.

Because I am long term with bonds, I don’t care about fluctuations. That’s more of a trader’s domain.

I also invest in silver for the long haul, or at least ten years as I see it. This makes the perfect combination for me. It seems to me that today’s environment is either inflationary or deflationary, and holding both bonds and silver covers me on both sides without too much thought.

I did get a prom

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Mr. Gullible
Guest
Mr. Gullible
April 29, 2011 4:26 pm

Gumshoe’s review of the 32% Clause write up used as encouragement to subscribe to True Income could not be more accurate. As a recent subscriber to True Income, I can say from experience you are right on the money. The bait looked great. Once you invest in his newsletter you can read Williams’ perspective for 2011. It mirrors very closely the relatively dismal analysis Gumshoe provides here. The numbers that encouraged me to subscribe were based on activity that Williams acknowledges is not likely in 2011. Was it ‘bait and switch’? You decide. On the positive side, Williams does appear to do his homework, and those who invested through him did much better than he forecast. Maybe he can pull that off again in 2011. In any event, thanks Gumshoe, for some good, clear insight.

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Goldbug
Guest
Goldbug
July 22, 2011 9:17 pm

I am deeply disappointed about Stansberry cancelling “THE BOND TRADER” with Steve McDonald. I have had great success with Steve McDonald and wished to keep him but every member of the Bond Trader will be rolled over to THIS service. I am so pissed with Stansberry that I gave this service all ones. In fact after reading all the failures here in this log, I think they should have both Mike Williams and Steve McDonald work together and double the salary Steve used to get. Steve seem to speak as though they pointed a gun to his head saying he didn’t get enough sales but he has had great reviews here. For this very reason, I gave all 1s to this service aiming at Stansberry because they are such arses in laying off Steve and for their poor decision making. Steve seems more experienced than Mike because even in March 2009, Steve’s recommendations did well as opposed to Mike’s. I hope Mike learned from his past mistakes and take on the route Steve took which looks for the best deals with the LEAST AMOUNT of bankrupcy risk.

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ira  kellman
Member
ira kellman
August 29, 2011 6:13 pm

Mike Williams analysis is always thorough and his picks often interesting. My problem is that I started investing with himvery early and had two of the three bonds I bought go bad.One we sold at at major loss and Tribune at a very small profit after a couple of years of real pain.
If you are going to buy all or most of his suggestions the letter makes sense but not if you are going to pick at it. You don’t get general market help from his picks.

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Charles
Guest
September 19, 2011 6:13 am

The first thing I did was read his long introductory emailed pitch touting his newsletter. The second thing I did was come to this site to see if there were any negative reviews. I was not at all surprised to see how poorly people had fared, and how much money they had lost, using his advice.

When I see one of these pitches, where the writer starts telling you about his children and grandchildren and his lovely wife first, rather than the investment, my radar starts beeping. Instead of wading thru 45 minutes of calculated come-on, you can simply close the page and a box will come up asking you if you really want to leave. Close that box and you will get one long page giving you all the text; you can then scroll through it quickly and find out what he is talking about. But he never mentions JUNK BONDS. Finally he DOES say corporate bonds, but I knew he meant JUNK corporate bonds without wanting to say so and turn me off. In other words, from the beginning he was hiding his meaning and hoping to reel me in through deception.

My rough rule of thumb is, the longer and folksier the pitch, the riskier the investment. Come HERE first for the truth based on other peoples’ trials. Or to another website like this. Just enter a sentence like ‘mike williams true income complaints’ into Google before doing any subscribing or investing. I don’t want to make myself out to be any kind of overly intelligent investor, I make mistakes like most everyone else. But these kinds of scams I think I know how to spot. The fact that he refunds your subscription price means little when you are stuck holding a lemon he has recommended. Do your due diligence first. And watch out for guys with 20,000 word come-ons starting with their lovely families and care-free lives since they discovered this or that.

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Bob
Guest
Bob
November 19, 2011 2:33 am

I bought six of the bonds that were recommended. Three of the issuing corporations are now in bankruptcy and their bonds are near worthless. What I make on the other three bonds won’t come close to making up the losses.

The junk bonds Mark Williams recommends are far riskier than he or Porter Stansberry let on. You’ll be better off making a measly 3 – 5% on high rated corporate bonds than trying to get 8 – 12% on the sticks of dynamite hawked in this newsletter.

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Wayne
Irregular
February 11, 2012 5:27 pm

I started in September 2011 and bought five of the bonds (the least number that Mike Williams recommends to purchase) in my IRA account and my wife’s IRA account. I guess we just lucked out because all five bonds with a total purchase value of almost $200K are all making money and paying the expected interest. We recently retired and are using the interest aspart of our income. The average percent gain is 8.25% and ranges from a low of 1.45% to 13.67%.

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Bob
Guest
Bob
March 8, 2012 11:53 pm

Complain to S&A about the crappy performance of their bond newsletter, and guess what — you get to be insulted by Porter Stansberry himself in the S&A Digest.

Porter: “Mike Williams constantly reminds his readers to buy a portfolio of bonds, not just one or two. To buy only six is to invite volatility and risk into your portfolio.”

Then he says, “To put so many of these risky bonds into a small portfolio was a huge mistake. ”

Then he says, “Here’s what I suggest: Start with a small amount of capital. Just buy a single bond. ”

So did I buy too many bonds or too few? Should I have bought just one instead of six or 20 instead of six? Porter blows hot and cold.

Porter again: “And to have selected three of the riskiest out of the six is simply foolish. You can tell that the reader looked to see which bonds were trading at the lowest prices (thus offering the biggest yields).”

Porter is lying. I did not buy the cheapest, highest yielding bonds. When I bought the A&P bonds they were the second lowest yield in the portfolio, and the second most expensive bonds as a percentage of par. Now later, when it became apparent to the market that A&P was in trouble, the A&P bonds dropped drastically in price (meaning their yield climbed). So who at that point beat his chest telling his readers to buy those cheap, super high yielding, and thus super risky, A&P bonds? Porter Stansberry, in his S&A Digest. Anybody who took his advice lost all the money invested.

None of the other bonds I bought were flagged as being particularly risky by Mark Williams at the time I bought them. Nor were they higher yielding or cheaper than most of the other bonds he recommended. In all cases he claimed there was ample margin to pay the debt. After the fact, of course, it is easy to point to the companies that failed and say that *those* bonds were the risky ones.

Remember, Porter is not Warren Buffet. He didn’t make his fortune through astute investment of his own assets. He made his pile selling newsletters. But he sure likes to call other people stupid investors. Yes, I was stupid. I took some of Mark Williams’ recommendations,

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car13lin
Member
car13lin
May 15, 2012 3:02 pm

Slothower

Bob
Guest
Bob
May 31, 2012 2:26 pm

Just a quick update. First, a correction — the author of the newsletter was Mike Williams, not Mark Williams. My bad.

I just sold one of the three remaining bonds at a loss — Edison Mission Energy. The company didn’t go bankrupt (yet) but the bond was downgraded by both Moodys and Fitch and the company is considered be likely to default on its debt. It was my decision to sell, not a recommendation of the newsletter. But then, the newsletter didn’t recommend selling the A&P bonds or the General Maritime bonds either, when they first showed signs of serious distress. Those bonds both went to 0.

So, two substantial losers, two huge losers, and two modest winners — that’s my record so far on Mike Williams’ True Income. BTW, Mike Williams has left S&A so the newsletter is now written by David Eifrig.