June 22, 2014

CHANGE: Taxi medallions have been the best investment in America for years. Now Uber may be changing that. “In New York, taxi medallions have topped $1 million. In Boston, $700,000. In Philadelphia, $400,000. In Miami, $300,000. Where medallions exist, they have outperformed even the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index. In Chicago, their value has doubled since 2009. . . . Deep pockets run this market. The system in Chicago and elsewhere is dominated by large investors who rely on brokers to sell medallions, specialty banks to finance them and middle men to manage and lease them to drivers who own nothing at all.” And their value comes solely from excluding competition. Interesting that the big fear of the medallion owners isn’t losing passengers to Uber, but losing the drivers they gouge. Hey guys, just wait for the self-driving cars. . . .