Letter To The Editor:

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Let’s explain how treasurer Chris Slusser’s investment portfolio lost $12 million.

Here’s one example:

Slusser purchased $1.2 million of six bonds of Alibaba, a company based in Communist China, earning an average interest rate of 2.2 percent. Just google this company, its owner Jack Ma, and his ties to the Chinese Communist Party.

And 2.2 percent? When you can make 4 to 5 percent at your local bank, or with U.S. treasuries?

It’s called “missed interest” – interest you could have earned, but didn’t.

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That’s why the “market value” of Slusser’s portfolio was $12 million under water.

For many months Slusser was asked to disclose the “market value” of his portfolio. When he finally did – in May of 2023 – the losses were reported.

He may say, “Well, at some point the bonds will mature, and I’ll get money back. See – I didn’t lose anything.”

In the real world, banks fail (e.g. Lehman Bros., Signature Bank) when – like Slusser – they make bad bets in the bond market.

It’s simply poor investing – risky Chinese bonds at low interest rates – missed interest and a portfolio valued $12 million below cost.

Kurt Prenzler, CPA

Madison County Chairman

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