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Messages - allthatjazz

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1
Where should I go next fall? / Re: To any UVA Law Students?
« on: August 23, 2008, 02:05:14 PM »
I was admitted to UVa two years ago with a 3.91/168 (average).  I was a history major and had minors in geography and education but also had a MS in education.  In addition, I was a non-traditional student coming into UVa with prior work experience, including 4 years in the military. 

Although I have no idea of how outstanding your "soft factors" are, with the new ABA policy of only requiring schools to report the highest LSAT score, I would certainly considering retaking if you think you can do better than a 166. 

Also with regard to the scholarship question, I did receive a decent scholarship even with my mediocre scores.

HTH.

2
General Board / Re: OCI T 14 Schools
« on: August 09, 2007, 10:24:47 AM »
I have 25 confirmed interviews and 5 alternate interviews.  Last year 75% of the alternate slots became actual interviews, so I have a realistic chance at 30 interviews.  That is the most we are allowed to keep for the August OGI. 

3
Rising 2Ls,  how many OCI an average person get. Goodfella, If you dont mind asking you, how many you have?

I seem to remember Career Services stating during an info session that the average number of interviews for 2Ls during the 2006 OGI was 22 or so. 

When it comes to interviews, students are either selected for an interview, selected to be an alternate, or politely informed that no interview is available.  During August OGI students are allowed to keep up to 25 selections for interviews and must cancel any additional ones.  Students are also allowed to carry an additional 5 alternate slots, which have a good chance of becoming selections.  In 2005, I believe 75% of the alternate slots became selections. 

During the September OGI you are allowed to keep enough interviews to bring the total number to around 35 if I remember correctly, although it was suggested that CS would fudge some on the September limit since many students will have job offers by that point and decline to interview in September.

There is also a lottery system through which employers fill a number of their interview slots.  Each student has points (total of 20 I think) to bid on these lottery slots.  A lottery slot can even be won by bidding zero points.  In fact I managed to get seven lottery interviews and I only bid actual points on two of them.  Up to 10 interviews can be acquired through the lottery. 

Probably more info than you wanted but I hope that helps.

4
General Off-Topic Board / Re: Oil hits 100/barrel
« on: August 05, 2006, 09:41:36 PM »
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Global reserves are actually going up rather than decreasing.  We are discovering more and more reserves each one of which balances out our increasing use of oil over time.  Then you factor in the very high chance that our dependence on oil will decrease in the long term with the use of alternative energy sources.  The reserves that you were citing from that article reflect the reserves available to us because of government policies.  These policies change in the short term and so does the level of reserves.  The important number is the actual amount of oil reserves globally, not what is made available by government who change their production capacity for political reasons.  The market speculates on these moves ahead of time and thus pushes up the price of oil in times of crisis.  When you say supply is barely ahead of demand this is because countries like Venezuela may change their oil production in the short term, not because there is barely more oil in the world to keep up with demand.  In the end I think current high oil prices are mostly due to foreign countries adjusting oil to reflect what it is actually worth just like everything else and also the recent spike is also been aided by the market pushing prices up due to speculative trading.

I think you might be confused over my use of supply.  I have never meant supply to mean proven oil reserves, and I would actually agree that the world's proven oil reserves have been increasing.  However, I do not think that proven oil resevres and their increase have very much to do with the actual price of oil, especially since the world does not appear to be in danger of running out of oil in the near future.

I used supply as meaning the current production of oil or the available supply.  This I believe is near capacity and until more production is brought online, either domestically or abroad, the production of oil will remain at or near the actual demand.  This fact, when combined with the current instability and political/social circumstances in many oil exporting countries, will keep the price of oil high.

5
General Off-Topic Board / Re: Oil hits 100/barrel
« on: August 05, 2006, 08:39:25 PM »
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Bad predictions leading to a surplus of oil... This means there is more oil than there was thought necessary... i.e. supply has gone up.  This brings prices down.

This is very true and something that the article makes very clear.

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As far as a risk premium being responsible for high oil prices this supports my claim that high oil prices are largely psychological effects from the market.  Not a concrete decrease in supply or increase in demand.  Increasing demand in certain regions of the world does not necessarily mean there is more demand today than there was 10 years ago or 20 years ago.  These booming areas seem to rotate (today China, India are requiring more oil... in the past it was the Asian economies and Russia)

I agree with you to a point.  There is a psychological effect, but that comes about because the world production of oil (ie the supply) is barely ahead of the demand (by about 1 million barrels a day according to the article).  So supply and demand play a role in this psychological effect.

I still think it is not quite correct to claim that "Oil prices are not at $75 a barrell because supply has decreased dramatically or because demand has increased dramatically," when in fact that very thing has occurred.  Have oil prices historically been low when compared to what one would expect the true cost to be?  Most likely yes, but that does not change the fact that world production of oil is barely keeping ahead of world demand for oil, which plays a large part in the price of oil. 

6
General Off-Topic Board / Re: Oil hits 100/barrel
« on: August 05, 2006, 08:04:49 PM »
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Oil prices are not at $75 a barrell because supply has decreased dramatically or because demand has increased dramatically.  Oil prices in the 90s were cheap because the governments in the middle east that controlled most of the oil were orignally put in power in the Carter era (ie Iranian Revolution).  Look at the historic prices.  Save for major shocks that caused a spike in oil, prices in the 90s were comparable to prices in the 1950s!  Going to the movies cost 25 cents back then.  A coke cost a dime back then.  But oil prices are relatively the same??  Does inflation not affect oil prices?

It was the U.S. fault for putting these regimes in power in the first place.  We got cheap oil for a while, but now these regimes are causing problems around the world that we are only now starting to deal with.  The Clinton administration mostly ignored the developing problems in the middle east for nearly a decade.

The countries that control oil are increasing prices because that is what fair market value for these goods are.  It is simply catching up to everything else.  As for oil going to $100 or above or even the prices it sits at now... this is largely a psychological effect that the market is pricing into oil.  Pices are going up over concerns of what may happen in the future with these unstable oil controlling regions, not because supply is decreasing or because demand is increasing.

Actually that same website has an article dealing with an analysis of the history of oil prices (http://www.wtrg.com/prices.htm) that actually refutes your claim that "Oil prices are not at $75 a barrell because supply has decreased dramatically or because demand has increased dramatically."

If you read the article you will see how bad predictions often lead to a surplus of oil (such as with the slowdown of the exploding Asian economies during the late 90s).  Even more interesting is the following:

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On March 19, 2003, just as some Venezuelan production was beginning to return, military action commenced in Iraq. Meanwhile, inventories remained low in the U.S. and other OECD countries. With an improving economy U.S. demand was increasing and Asian demand for crude oil was growing at a rapid pace. The loss of production capacity in Iraq and Venezuela combined with increased production to meet growing international demand led to the erosion of excess oil production capacity. In mid 2002, there was over 6 million barrels per day of excess production capacity, but by mid 2003 the excess was below 2 million. During much of 2004 and 2005 the spare capacity to produce oil has been under one million barrels per day. A million barrels per day is not enough spare capacity to cover an interruption of supply from almost any OPEC producer. In a world that consumes over 80 million barrels per day of petroleum products that adds a significant risk premium to crude oil price and is largely responsible for prices in excess of $40 per barrel

7
General Off-Topic Board / Re: Oil hits 100/barrel
« on: August 05, 2006, 07:33:32 PM »
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Again you bring up the non-sequiter that average ENERGY company margins (this is lumping oil with solar power, wind, coal, natural gas, geo thermic, nuclear, etc) are comparable to other average industries.  That is statistic does nothing to explain the  rapid recent rises in the margins. Competition in the OIL market is nothing like competition in the domestic service, real estate, or banking industries.

I have dealt explicitly with OIL company margins, and I am not trying to explain a rapid rise in the margins for oil companies.  In fact, I would argue that the rise has not been that drastic.  Last year, Exxon-mobile reported profits that equaled a 9.8% profit margin, which is roughly where the company has traditionally been in terms of profit margin.  I am attempting to refute the claim that oil companies are greedy by pointing out that their profit margins are not obscenly greater than most other industries and are even less than some industries.  Where is the outcry over the banking industry having profit margins at twice the rate of oil companies?

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I blame the US government for buying so much oil in the first place.

The problem is private consumer demand is not very elastic. The government is powering the demand shift and it still doesnt explain the higher margins which you would expect to stay even as the market adjusts.  Disturbingly, these margins seem to be growing at an alarming rate (that Denver Post article I linked says they doubled in the past year :o). The obvious culprits seem to be a consumer base who do not have good information, who exhibit a largely inelastic demand, and a government who is investing in oil to fuel a war with no forseeable end.

In the grand scheme of things, do the actions of  U.S. government really have much of an impact on the world-wide price of oil?  Does the increase in fuel use by the U.S. military really have a greater impact on the world oil market than the increased demand in India and China?  I am doubtful that it does but I would be interested is seeing data to prove otherwise.




8
General Off-Topic Board / Re: Oil hits 100/barrel
« on: August 05, 2006, 06:32:57 PM »
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How do higher average profit margins in real estate development justify the burden of rising gas prices on low income Americans?

Rising gas prices are largely a product of supply and demand.  Yet, some like to point to greedy oil companies as being the culprit and not market forces.  Comparing profit margins is useful as a way to point out that oil companies are not earning profits that are out of line with other industries and sectors of the economy.  Prices are going up because the cost of business is rising, mostly due to increased demand by developing nations particualrly India and China.

While the burden of rising gas prices on low income Americans is unfortunate, there is not much the oil companies can truely do to lower prices without forcing themselves out of business.  If you want to blame someone for the burden placed on low income Americans, blame those who do not want the U.S. to explore and exploit its own oil reserves or blame India and China for attempting to develop their economies.  Or blame the goverment that tacks an average of 46 cents tax on each gallon of gasoline.



9
General Off-Topic Board / Re: Oil hits 100/barrel
« on: August 05, 2006, 06:09:24 PM »
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Ah that the profit margins are higher is relevant, the fact that other "industries" have higher average profit margins than the energy/oil company average is irrelevant and is just oil company PR.

Ah, now I understand...reality is "irrelevant".

10
General Off-Topic Board / Re: Oil hits 100/barrel
« on: August 05, 2006, 05:59:37 PM »
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Thank you for a paragraph of completely irrelevant information.

I though it very relevant to your claim concerning greedy oil companies but whatever.

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