The HDD Broker Blog

The HDD Broker Blog is where you'll find useful and informative articles, industry news and other trenchless information written by staff and partners of HDD Broker. Click on any of the articles below to read the full story.

Read the full article HDD Community's Hurricane Irma Relief Help

September 21, 2017

On Sunday, September 10th, 2017, Hurricane Irma tore through Southwest Florida as a category 4 hurricane. She was an angry storm.

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Read the full article A Tribute to a Great Man

August 8, 2017

It is with deep grief that we announce the passing of our founder, Ivan Lauzon, on July 22nd, after a short but valiant battle with an aggressive cancer.

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Read the full article HDD Used Equipment Market Remains Strong

November 30, 2016

The time has come to take the plunge and increase the number of drill rigs in your fleet. Or perhaps your need is to replace one of the aging rigs in the yard. What do you do? Do you immediately start researching the latest and splashiest rigs in the manufacturers' catalogs or do you explore high-quality previously owned rigs available for sale?

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Read the full article 2016 Recap - A Look Back at the Used Marketplace

December 27, 2016

An eventful year draws to a close, and despite a few headwinds, the HDD industry outlook remains strong for 2017. Not surprisingly, the telecom market drove sales of used drills under 30,000lbs pullback. In 2016, we sold the highest portion of small HDD rigs than ever before.

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Read the full article Take Advantage of Your SECTION 179 Benefits

December 7, 2016

Section 179 of the IRS tax code allows businesses to deduct the FULL PURCHASE PRICE (up to $500,000 in 2016) of qualifying NEW or USED equipment (such as company vehicles, machinery or software) from your gross income.

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Read the full article This Summer's Top Selling Used HDD Drills

November 3, 2016

Daylight savings time is just around the corner, so it's a good time to look back at this summer's best-selling used HDD drills.

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Read the full article What This Purple Drill Taught us About Resale Value

March 17, 2016

It was a 2000 Ditch Witch JT7020 drill and it was purple. Bright, Barney-the-dinosaur purple. The year was 2003 and the state of the used marketplace was rapidly changing. The fiber market crashed in 2001, destabilizing the industry, and putting tremendous downward pressure on drill pricing.

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Read the full article This Winter's Top Selling Drill is.....

March 01, 2016

....the Vermeer D24x40A!
Unsurprisingly, this perpetual best-seller was No. 1 on our "Top 8" list again. Consistent demand from India, Southeast Asia and Eastern Europe has sustained the average price point - roughly $26,000 USD - for the last couple of years.

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Read the full article The Advantages of Canadian Sellers in the Used HDD Marketplace

Febuary 18, 2016

Canadians have several distinct advantages when it comes to selling used HDD equipment into the USA. Surprised? Don't be. The current buying power of the US currency, the ease of export, and an increasing demand for pre-owned equipment make Canadian drills a viable and attractive option for American buyers.

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Read the full article UCT 2016

Febuary 10, 2016

Held within the sprawling Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, GA, this year's UCT show tried on a new location and new hours for size. It wasn't a perfect fit. Transplanted from its traditional location in Texas purportedly due to construction on the convention center , UCT's move to Atlanta was a qualified success.

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Read the full article Horizontal Directional Drilling on Vancouver Island - Growth and Challenges

January 2, 2015

Since my introduction to horizontal directional drilling (HDD) technology, I have grown a strong appreciation for not only its environmental benefits, but also for the fact that it makes less of an impact on society's busy schedule.

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Read the full article 2014: Year in Review

December 23, 2014

The opening months of 2014 saw the last of the "polar vortex" artic freeze finally ease up throughout North America. While weather was unsettled globally, the impact on the US market was particularly significant, costing the economy over 2 per cent GDP.

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Read the full article HDD Broker goes to Vac-Tron 20 Year Anniversary

November 20, 2014

We were honored with an invitation to the Vac-Tron 20 Year Anniversary in business celebration hosted at their facility in Okahumpka, FL in a two-day event on November 6th and 7th.

On the 6th they had a well attended party complete with meet and greets, factory tours, display and demonstrations of their equipment, an awesome barbeque dinner and a top notch country band. It was clearly evident, from the owner to the employee, the level of care for their work and their customers, as well as the importance of the company to the local area and economy.

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Read the full article Baby, It Was Cold Outside

April 11, 2014

I cannot recall a winter in our 12 year history where our industry was so affected by the weather. The US northeast region saw three-to-four times the usual snowfall, according to the NESIS index. This was magnified by two category 3 snowstorms that ranked amount the top 30 storms of the last half-century. 91% of the Great Lakes were frozen, the 2nd largest ice cover on record.

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Read the full article Tier 4 and the Used Equipment Marketplace

January 31, 2014

Tier 4 regulations have created massive disruptions in equipment manufacturer's businesses. The changes required by these new regulations have resulted in billions of dollars and tens of thousands of man-hours having to have been invested in new research and development, not only in the engines but also in the equipment frames themselves in order to allow for the larger, heavier and more complex power plants and emissions components.

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Read the full article HDD Broker Open House

January 24, 2014

Naples Location is Officially Open for Business!

Well, to be accurate, our Naples, Florida location has been operating since August of 2008. But with the growth of HDD Broker’s US staff it was time for an upgrade.

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Read the full article The Pre-Owned Marketplace of 2013

December 20, 2013

As another year draws to a close, now is a great time to look back at 2013 and what happened in the used equipment industry.

All indications seem to show that the economy as a whole is well on its way to recovery, and sales of new and used equipment within the HDD industry certainly reflect that. While total sales of new HDD units haven’t been made public yet, sales of used equipment was very strong overall.

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Read the full article Take Advantage of Your SECTION 179 Benefits Before They Expire!

November 13, 2013

Section 179 of the IRS tax code allows businesses to deduct the FULL PURCHASE PRICE (up to $500,000 in 2013) of qualifying NEW or USED equipment (such as business use vehicles, machinery or software) from your gross income.

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Read the full article THERE'S NO CRYING IN DRILLING... and we want proof!

July 22, 2013

You could win a Google NEXUS 7 tablet! Simply send in a qualifying image of yourself or your crew wearing your official HDD Broker "No Crying in Drilling" apparel.

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Read the full article The Evolution of Used Equipment Buyers

April 26, 2013

The word “Evolution” is one that I really like to use when describing our take on the customers that we deal with in the used equipment marketplace.

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Read the full article 2012 in Review - Hellooo 2013!

December 21, 2012

Yet another year has come and gone. New companies have entered the marketplace, old ones have vanished, and yet others have merged in one of the most active years for the HDD industry in recent memory.

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Read the full article No-Dig 2012 São Paulo, Brazil

November 19, 2012

It's Thursday, November 15th, 2012 and I'm writing this from our hotel room in the TransAmerica Hotel in São Paulo, Brazil as we pass time waiting for our 11:30pm flight tonight to head home. The exhibition wrapped up last night after three days of being open.

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Read the full article Trenchless Live 2012 – A blustery, but exciting event!

October 30, 2012

Trenchless Live, hosted in Melbourne, Australia on October 23rd and 24th was an exciting event yet again, and HDD Broker was very pleased to exhibit there once again this year.

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Read the full article HDD Broker Employees Take a Break from Working in the Trenches, Sort of

October 11, 2012

At first, a Tough Mudder event might sound like something Bear Grylls would do in his spare time. It requires hard training, getting dirty, enduring any outdoor climate and perhaps most of all, mental willpower. When HDD Broker sales specialist Jonathan Brown first heard about Tough Mudder and presented the idea of participating to other employees, it was taken almost as a joke.

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Read the full article The State of the Second Hand HDD Rig Market (Part 2)

June 27, 2012

In the last issue of Trenchless World you read about the steady decline of used equipment inventory that the marketplace has seen since the peak back in October of 2010. The reasoning behind the steady decline of used inventory was outlined in great detail in the previous article.

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Read the full article The State of the Second Hand HDD Rig Market

May 31, 2012

It has been a challenging few years. Contractors, manufacturers, resellers and most everyone in general saw a reduction in spending, a loss of jobs and an overall loss of income as a result of the global recession that hit in late 2008.

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Read the full article Used Equipment and the Small Rig Market

March 29, 2012

The HDD marketplace is full of a diverse collection of horizontal drilling machines. These drills range in size from small pit-launched units that can be fit into the bed of a pickup truck to monolith maxi-rigs that need three semi-trailer truckloads just for the main drill components.

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Read the full article 2011 in Review

December 29, 2011

HDD Broker had a banner year in 2011, breaking our previous records for sales. We sold into over 39 different countries and attracted viewers to our website from over 100 others. This year also saw HDD Broker's 10 Year Anniversary. We are all very excited over the impact that we've made over the last ten years and we're looking forward to the next ten with equal enthusiasm.

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Read the full article ICUEE 2011

November 1, 2011

Well, we are back from ICUEE 2011. This was our first time hosting an outside booth at ICUEE and I am glad to say that we found it a great success. For those who don't know, ICUEE is our industry's largest tradeshow. The show itself took place in beautiful Louisville, KY. It was a three day event that took place from October 1st to 3rd. There were many different types of companies present at ICUEE, many of which were already part of our HDD Broker network.

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Read the full article Australasia and the Used HDD Market

August 25, 2011

One of the challenges of living on an island, albeit a very large one, is that there can be a distinct shortage of necessary equipment needed for projects domestically. If we talk about the HDD marketplace, this truth often means that importing equipment from overseas is one of the most common and cost-effective solutions.

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Read the full article NO-DIG 2011

March 31, 2011

The 2011 No-Dig Exhibition in Washtington, DC has come and gone. I am happy to say that attendance was much higher than in the recent UCT show.

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Read the full article CONEXPO 2011

March 25, 2011

By all counts (at least thus far), CONEXPO 2011 has been a very welcomed success. After years of slumping sales, the turnout at the CONEXPO exhibition in Las Vegas this week seems to indicate a positive change in customer perception and general optimism for the coming year.

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Read the full article UCT 2011

February 15, 2011

It was off to a promising start...
This year's UCT exhibition returned to Houston, TX after the last few years saw it in places such as Tampa, FL and San Antonio, TX. Upon first impression, the show looked like it was going to be the best in years. It was much larger, and vendors that had previously abandoned the show had returned to exhibit once more.

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Read the full article Looking Back at 2010

December 29, 2010

2010 was a year of hope for most people. The previous two years of steady economic hardship had steadily worn away at many people's lives, and the first glimmers of stabilization began to emerge.

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Read the full article Section 179 Tax Deductions for 2010

November 3rd, 2010

Important tax benefit for purchasing depreciating assets may be approaching sunset. Section 179 of the United States Tax Code has offered a substantial increase of potential tax savings and credits in 2010 that is set to expire December 31. Prospective buyers should act now as the future is uncertain for this cost saving opportunity.

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Read the full article The State of the Used HDD Marketplace

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
October 8th, 2010

The Global Economic Downturn has affected almost every corner of the globe, with some areas having been affected to a far greater degree than others. Countries that had previously seen unprecedented growth in the trenchless industry saw a sudden cease of work in that area altogether. Contractors who had drilling contracts in hand one minute suddenly found them evaporate the next. Almost overnight, the landscape of the entire industry changed.

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Read the full article HDD Equipment Overview 2010

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
August 31st, 2010

"May you live in interesting times." It’s an old curse that has certainly held true for many people and companies over the last year.

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Read the full article Shipping Equipment by Truck

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
March 31st, 2010

So, you've found the perfect package and now you need to get it to your shop. The most cost-effective method for shipping (in most cases) is to ship by trucking service.

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Read the full article What does the Google Fiber Optic Experiment mean to the Trenchless Industry?

Written by Renee Martin, VP Operations
March 18th, 2010

Last month, Google announced its plans to build an experimental fiber-to-the-home network in select cities that would offer unprecedented internet speeds - about 100 times faster than what most Americans have today.

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Read the full article A Review of UCT 2010

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
January 26th, 2010

I'm thankful to say that the continuing optimism that we are seeing and hearing from our customers and vendors alike was mirrored in the attendance and quality of the recent Underground Construction Technology Exhibition that took place in Tampa, FL last week.

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Read the full article Tips When Receiving Freight Off a Truck

Written by Phil Menees, Joshua Tranport
January 15th, 2010

Just a reminder on a few points for you and your customers when receiving freight off a truck.

Hopefully, by taking these extra few minutes in receiving your freight, you can protect your investment and enjoy the equipment that you have purchased.

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Read the full article Happy Holidays from HDD Broker!

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
December 23rd, 2009

HDD Broker would like to wish all of our customers.. Past, Present and Future... a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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Read the full article Announcing a New Way to Buy from HDD Broker!

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
Novemeber 6th, 2009

HDD Broker is proud to announce the launch of a new and exciting way to buy from the largest and most comprehensive used HDD company in the world!

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Read the full article ICUEE Follow Up - Louisville, Kentucky 2009

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
October 23rd, 2009

Amongst the dire news of a stumbling economy, the attendance at the ICUEE show in Louisville, Kentucky was refreshingly good. There was a pervading sense of overall optimism that helped keep the show upbeat.

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Read the full article Trenchless Australasia 2009

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
October 9th, 2009

Well I've just returned after a long, long (long) journey back from lovely, overcast Melbourne, Australia for the Trenchless 2009 Trade show and exhibition. I thought I'd offer a bit of a summary of what we saw, did and accomplished while we were down there!

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Read the full article The Changing Demands of the Mid-sized Drilling Contractor

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
August 2009
Featured in Trenchless World Magazine

These changing economic times have certainly thrown the world on its ear, in some places more than others. Contracts have been delayed or shut down altogether, and in areas where the work does exist the ability for a contractor to obtain funds for the purchase of equipment to complete the work has diminished substantially. Through all of this, however, the needs and wants of the contractor remain unchanged. Manufacturers have, over time, invested considerable time, energy and resources in to the evolution of the HDD drill, and we have seen the results over the last few years.

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Read the full article Strategic Partnership and Business Expansion Caters to the Australasian Market

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
August 2009
Featured in Trenchless Australasia

It is the goal of every successful company to not just serve their customers, but to excel at doing so by catering to the specific needs of their clients. The world is a very large place, made smaller by things such as the internet, however there are specific territorial, cultural and business concerns for each geographical area and it is difficult for one company to handle each area with equal ability.

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Read the full article The Broker Advantage

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
March 2006
Originally written for Trenchless Australasia

When a company or individual makes the decision to purchase a piece of equipment, there are typically two routes that are explored. The first, and probably easiest, is to locate an equipment dealer and purchase the piece of equipment brand new. This has several advantages, not the least of which are reliability and warranty for the product. Unfortunately, new equipment also carries a hefty price tag, and not all companies can afford the luxury of purchasing their entire fleet of equipment brand new.

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Read the full article Hard Times Show Exactly What You’re Made Of

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
July 2009

"In prosperity, our friends know us; in adversity, we know our friends." ~ John Churton Collins

The quote above is absolutely true, and no more applicable than in these challenging economic times. The quote was brought to focus for me recently when we did a transaction with a vendor of used tooling that we’d had frequent dealings with in the past.

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Read the full article Buying and Selling in the Used HDD Market

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
May 2009
Featured in Underground Construction Magazine

I would say that the used market is "finding" itself right now. I think a proper term might be "volatile". What we're seeing is a market where some models of drill are dropping completely off of the map in regards to demand, while others see a very high inquiry rate.

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Read the full article Cutting Through the Hype: What the Future Really Holds for the Trenchless Industry

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
April 2009

There’s been a lot of talk lately about how the highly-publicized $787 billion economic stimulus package will revitalize the country. A lot of people are holding their breath waiting for the money to come flowing in and take their companies from the threshold of bankruptcy and back into the black again.

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Read the full article Toronto No-Dig Show 2009

Written by Bonnie Lauzon
April 2009

What struck me at the Toronto Show was that the directional drilling industry has also advanced really dramatically. When Ivan and I used to go to the shows not so many years ago, there just weren't alot of people around that even heard of directional drilling.

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Read the full article NUCA Exhibition 2009

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
March 2009

The now-annual NUCA exhibition in Phoenix, Arizona took place March 4-6, 2009. The weather was spectacular, hovering in the mid 70's for the three days of the show. The downtown area of Phoenix was beautiful, with great access to amazing dining and entertainment.

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Read the full article Evaluating the Used Rig Market

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
February 2009
Featured in Trenchless World Magazine

It’s a different world today than it was yesterday. It will be a different world again tomorrow.

I was recently asked to speak at the Underground Construction Technology Exhibition in San Antonio, Texas, and it afforded me the opportunity stand back and reflect on the HDD industry over the last ten years or so and see how it has been affected, and more specifically how the market for used HDD equipment has changed and where it is now.

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Read the full article What Does the International Market Offer?

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
February 2009
Featured in Trenchless World Magazine

There is a wide selection of HDD drills offered from manufacturers based outside of the US. The quality ranges from next to useless to upper-end luxury, depending upon the manufacturer and the resources that they have to work with in their respective countries.

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Read the full article Trenchless Round Table Discussion

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
January 2009

It was my distinct pleasure to take part in the first annual Trenchless Round Table Discussion put on by Trenchless World Magazine. Many of the industry's major players were invited to attend, and representatives from many of the trenchless industry leaders made an appearance.

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Read the full article Responses from the Trenchless Round Table Discussion

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
January 2009

What impact is the current economic downturn having on the trenchless industry? And what are your predictions for your respective sectors for 2009?

We’ve heard from the new equipment manufacturers here but I can talk about the used equipment side of things.

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Read the full article The Changing Face of the HDD Equipment Marketplace

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
October 2008
Featured in Trenchless World Magazine

"The times, they are a'changin'..."

An old saying, and one that seems to be accurate regardless of just what the "times" currently are. The expression is, nonetheless, an accurate one, particularly as we talk about the HDD marketplace right now.

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Read the full article The Evolution of the HDD Contractor: The Changing Needs and Wants In Today’s HDD Marketplace

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
July 2006
Featured in Trenchless Australasia

As an individual who has constant contact with contractors from all over the world on a daily basis, I have a somewhat unique take on just what exactly it is that the average contractor is looking for in HDD equipment. Our customer base here at HDDBroker includes hundreds of contractors in dozens of countries from around the world, giving us a broad spectrum of companies to compare against.

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Read the full article What Is It Worth?

Written by Bob Martin, General Manager
March 2006
Featured in Trenchless Australasia

"What is it worth?"

That is a question that most often comes from sellers, but one that I’ve also heard many times coming from buyers as well.

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This commentary is presented for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a comprehensive or detailed statement on any subject and no representations or warranties, express or implied, are made as to its accuracy, timeliness or completeness. Nothing in this commentary is intended to provide financial, legal, accounting or tax advice nor should it be relied upon. Neither HDD Broker, Inc nor the author is liable whatsoever for any loss or damage caused by, or resulting from, any use of or any inaccuracies, errors or omissions in the information provided.


The use of trademarked names herein does not suggest sponsorship or association of HDD Broker with the trademark owner's product or service.

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