DETROIT—He raised his hands and shot me. I was dead.
Dale Brown is the founder and CEO of the private security company Detroit Threat Management.
Detroit is the latest stop on my Rust Belt Tour. And I figured if anyone knew how the Motor City’s economy was doing, it would be a guy patrolling the streets.
That’s why I asked Dale to be my guide. (And he also showed me how not to arrest a criminal suspect; more on that in a moment.)
His company has been hired to protect businesses and communities in the area. So he has a firsthand look at what’s going on in the city every day.
Detroit is one of those industrial cities the media say are struggling.
But that’s not what I saw. The economy appears to be recovering. Jobs are coming back. And pro-business policies will only speed up the process.
I’m on the ground to pull back the curtain and show you what’s really going on… And that appears to be a healthy and vibrant economy.
Over the past two weeks, I’ve traveled to Indianapolis, Middletown, Ohio, Milwaukee, New Lennox, Illinois, and Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, to see how the economy is doing (and potential ways to profit from what I uncover). And I’m seeing the same thing here in the Motor City.
That’s why you should ignore the doom and gloom coming from the media.
In a moment, we’ll get to how Detroit is doing. But first, my cop training…
Today, Dale was training me how to apprehend a suspect.
He handed me a handgun and said, “You’re a police officer, you’re approaching me, and my hands are behind my back. What do you do?”
I pointed the gun at him, and in my best Hollywood cop voice, I said, “Put your hands up!”
Unbeknownst to me, he had a handgun tucked into his belt. He raised his hands like I requested, and then before I knew it… he shot me.
Although the guns looked and felt real, they weren’t. We tried this a few more times. Same result—I died.
After the quick crash course on how to stop a criminal, we hopped in Dale’s Hummer H2 and took a tour of the city.
The offices of Detroit Threat Management
We started in an up-and-coming area along the riverfront downtown. Developers are tearing down old warehouses and turning them into green spaces or apartments.
Dale said all the renovations started a couple years ago.
Detroit was in a rut as auto factories closed over the years. But starting last year, the Motor City started to take off.
The Detroit Development Agency estimates that new construction deals signed last year totaled over $1 billion.
That includes the new Little Caesar’s Arena where the Detroit Red Wings hockey team and Detroit Pistons basketball team will play their home games.
And businesses are coming back to the downtown area, too.
The two biggest additions in the past year are Microsoft and automotive seat maker Adient. They’re bringing 200 and 500 jobs, respectively, to the area.
The 2014 election of Mayor Mike Duggan increased the pace of development in Detroit. Before Duggan came to office, Detroit was in chaos.
His predecessor, Kwame Kilpatrick, pretended to be a pro-business mayor but only wanted to line his pockets.
He gave over $73 million in city contracts to cronies… and got $9.6 million in kickbacks.
Eventually, he was convicted of racketeering and extortion and sentenced to 28 years in prison.
Dale told me that Duggan is a true businessman. The mayor is the former CEO of the Detroit Medical Center and knows how to run a company. And he’s made it safe again to do business in Detroit.
With a pro-business mayor and a pro-business president, even more jobs should come to Detroit.
Once again, what I’m seeing is a strong, vibrant economy in one of the hardest-hit manufacturing economies in the country.
An Economic Rebirth
Yes, Detroit has some completely vacant neighborhoods like this one we drove through.
Dale and I took a trip through some of Detroit’s blighted neighborhoods
But things are shifting; it’s growing. Businesses are coming back, and so are the people.
In fact, one of the neighborhoods Dale’s company protects is called Palmer Woods.
When he started patrolling the community in 2010, there were 33 vacant houses. Now, there are only two. (I’ll have more on this in tomorrow’s Daily.)
Detroit is strong, just like Indianapolis. It’s another confirmation that America is already experiencing an industrial renaissance.
Ignore the doom and gloom you hear in the media and buy some high-quality businesses. For a list of some of the highest-quality businesses in the country, check out our Elite 25. You can find the latest update here.
Nick Rokke, CFA
Analyst, The Palm Beach Daily
P.S. In case you’re wondering, the correct way to approach a suspect with his hands behind his back is with your weapon drawn. You order the suspect not to move, and then move behind him to check his person for weapons. If he’s armed, it will be near impossible for him to attack you.
By Chris Lowe, editor at large, Bonner & Partners
Bitcoin booms during bad times…
That’s the big takeaway from today’s chart. It looks at the price of bitcoin in U.S. dollar terms going back to 2015.
As you can see, each time there is a spike in geopolitical stress, the price of bitcoin goes higher.
The best way to think of bitcoin is as “virtual gold.”
It’s outside of the control of central banks… it allows you to hold savings outside of the banking system… and it’s not vulnerable to a sovereign debt collapse.
When there’s global financial stress, expect to see the price of bitcoin soar.
Subscribers continue to make major-league gains from PBL editor Teeka Tiwari’s cryptocurrency recommendations…
From Ted T.: Teeka, THANK YOU for getting me interested in cryptocurrencies. I read all of your articles and did some my own research. I had owned bitcoin since July 2016. But at the end of January 2017, I decided to establish a position in some of your other recommendations. My total position’s value was about $20,000. As I look today, my cryptocurrency portfolio is $691,000.
I’m 67, and it looks like I WILL be retiring from my current employer within the next year so I can pursue other ventures. Thank you. Thank you VERY much.
From Chris C.: I’ve been reading The Palm Beach Daily for a little over one year. In that time, I’ve learned a lot. One thing in particular that caught my attention was cryptocurrencies.
I have Teeka’s advice and started investing in cryptocurrencies. I’m pleased to say that I am up a whopping 3,300% in one of my positions and over 400% in the rest of my crypto portfolio. Keep up the good work on informing us and educating us. Thank you and your team.
And this from a reader interested in the cannabis industry…
From Debbie F.: Will you be looking into marijuana stocks? Thanks.
Nick’s Reply: Thanks for the note. While marijuana stocks are an exciting new market, they’re not something we’re going to cover in the Daily. Most of these companies are too small and speculative to mention here. Plus, there’s a lot of risk. Many marijuana stocks don’t have a real underlying business. And there are too many fraudulent companies in this space.
But if you are interested in this market, here’s one suggestion…
Cambria Investment Management recently filed a form with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to start the first actively traded marijuana exchange-traded fund (ETF) in the United States. The ticker symbol will be TOKE. There is no official launch date, though. You can learn more about it right here.
And finally, more feedback on my Rust Belt Tour…
From James P.: I’m responding to Nick Rokke’s article “Five Reasons Why U.S. Manufacturing Is on the Rebound.” China and its 1.8 billion insatiable people are sucking up Americans’ jobs and wealth like a black hole. I hope President Trump is doing something right to stop these bleedings.
After protesters attacked his daughter’s street, this rancher decided to expose them… and uncovered a disturbing truth…