Weekend Reading: Jan 19-20

Another week of positive returns. Markets are now up 4 weeks in a row. The overarching theme have been investors are hopeful that there will be trade-deal between U.S. and China. If not that, potentially Trump administration removing all tariffs until a deal is reached. Also, recent positive macro data have fueled the market.


On the other side, there are plenty of bad news. The U.S. government shut-down is now the longest ever. So far the economic effects have not worried the markets. Teresa May lost most recent Brexit vote in parliament. Resulting in more uncertainty.  No one knows if there will be delay of the Brexit, a new vote, or other outcomes. EU countries have commenced contingency plans in case of a hard Brexit.  Data out of China continue to be negative side, but again markets have put its hope to a deal.


Earnings have been hit and miss in the first week of earnings. The banks reported mixed results with Goldman and Bank of America report better than expected results, whilst Morgan Stanley and JP Morgan were less stellar. Netflix missed its numbers, but the markets shrugged. American Expressed missed on lower spending. On the retail side, Signet missed while Tiffany beat. On the auto side, Tesla is laying off works as it is facing headwinds.


Finally, one major concern from last year was the freezing up of credit markets. It appear to have now to have opened up, giving investors more confidence things are all ok. With that said, the markets have priced in plenty of good news. Anything negative could easily turn the markets. Let it be Mueller probe, trade talks or geopolitical events.




Economy, Trade & Fed, Macro

Over 300 small-business loans a day aren’t happening because of the shutdown via Washington Post


U.S. Restaurant Prices Jump the Most Since 2011 from Bloomberg


NAHB: Builder Confidence Increases in January via Calculated Risk


Boom Fizzles: Shipments Fall for 1st Time Since Transportation Recession from Wolf Street


Dimon says JP Morgan `won’t be stupid’ with loans as end of business cycle nears via CNBC


India: Biggest Strike in World History. 200 million People Strike against Modi’s Government. Will the Government and the Markets Fall? From Ask Brokers


China exports fall most in 2 years as slowdown and trade war bite via FT


Jiayuan crash underscores China property risks by FT


You can’t contain China: Former US trade chief Robert Zoellick warns Donald Trump from SCMP


Xi Jinping’s turn away from the market puts Chinese growth at risk via FT

China: Xi makes it Clear – Prepare for War with Taiwan – Maybe a Convenient way for the U.S. to bankrupt China by Ask Brokers


Japan's optimistic millennials shed frugal habits and lift spending from Nikkei Asian Review


Europe: Economies Shows Stress. Car Sales Collapse – U.S. Signals More Auto Tariffs. Via Ask Brokers


Draghi Warns Lawmakers Eurozone Economy Weaker Than Expected from WSJ


German industry’s plan to face the China steamroller via FT


EU offers Brexit reassurance but no changes to deal by Politico


Brexit latest polling: Public hate Theresa May's deal - but still back leaving from The Telegraph


As UK's EU withdrawal nears, Germany steps up Brexit prep via DW


France launches contingency plans for hard Brexit via FT


Ivanka Trump to Help Select Nominee for World Bank President via WSJ





Markets / Companies

Do You Chase Longs Here? From Ask Brokers


Are Market Moves Happening Faster? by A Wealth of Common Sense


Buy Protection When You Can, Not When You Must from Ask Brokers


If Earnings Have Peaked, Will a Stock Wipeout Follow? By Chief Investment Officer


Diverging Central Banks by Ask Brokers


Lions and Tigers and Yield Curve Inversions from Pension Partners

Dull Markets Killing Volatility – Time for the Contrarian Trade? By Ask Brokers


Mighty JPY not Buying the Risk On from Ask Brokers


Poor Morgan Stanley results end Wall Street winning streak by FT


Apple’s Next Big Move? It Should Buy Nintendo via Barron’s


Apple supplier Dialog Semi weathers iPhone slump to hit revenue target from Reuters


Foxconn axes 50,000 seasonal jobs as Apple slowdown bites by Nikkei Asian Review



Netflix is raising prices across of all of its tiers via Engadget


What Amazon’s Rise to No. 1 Says About the Stock Market from WSJ


China’s Tencent and Alibaba hit the brakes after dealmaking binge via FT


Is the Overpriced M&A Spree by the Chinese Showing Cracks? German Robotic Company Kuka Could be a Sign from Ask Brokers


Alibaba faces growing regulatory threat as China’s economy falters by FT


Was The Facebook '10 Year Challenge' A Way To Mine Data For Facial Recognition AI? Via Forbes


Elon Musk Says Tesla Is Cutting Full-Time Jobs to Maintain the Low Cost of Its Cars by Fortune


The most powerful person in Silicon Valley from FastCompany


WeWork’s CEO Makes Millions as Landlord to WeWork by WSJ


Chinese tech unicorn ByteDance launches new social app to rival WeChat via SCMP


Exclusive: PG&E talking to banks on multibillion dollar bankruptcy financing – sources by Reuters


Safe Or Not, Roundup Is Toxic for Bayer by Der Spiegel


Newmont buys Goldcorp in US$10B mega deal to be top gold miner via Bloomberg


Beware the Mega- Merger from Crossing Wall Street


German regulator saddles Deutsche Bank with onerous money laundering reviews by Handelsblatt


Canada’s Canopy Growth shares jump on deal to develop industrial hemp farms in New York from CNBC


The weed middleman that expects to make billions as the Sunkist of pot via MarketWatch


iPhone On Rails: How Finnish Elevator Maker Kone Is Using Technology To Reach The Next Floor from Forbes


The Marijuana Billionaire Who Doesn’t Smoke Weed by Fortune


As Americans Drink Less Alcohol, Booze Makers Look Beyond the Barrel from WSJ


Alaska officials probing BP oil, gas wells at Prudhoe Bay after spill via Reuters


California’s largest utility just declared bankruptcy. Hello, climate change. By VOX


Apollo Nears Deal to Buy Arconic for More Than $10 Billion via WSJ


US pursuing criminal charges against Huawei for alleged theft of trade secrets via CNBC


Fiserv to acquire First Data in all-stock deal with equity value of $22 billion via MarketWatch


Spain wrestles with a private equity boom from FT


Exclusive: Snoop Dogg Invests In Klarna, Sweden's $2.5 Billion Unicorn by Forbes


Fidelity looks to AI as the future for portfolio management, asset selection via SCMP


Mirror, Mirror by Demonitzed


Multifactor Multiplicity from Bps and pieces


Are Structured Products Trash? By Demonetized




HSBC banks on blockchain to finesse forex trades via FT

Russia will buy Bitcoin to avoid US sanctions, economist claims from Asia Times

The hottest cryptocurrency, Tron, rekindles memories of the bitcoin bubble for worldwide traders by SCMP


Research / Interesting Reads

A major wall Street player is cutting 1,500 jobs and accelerating automation via CNBC

Consider Firing Your Male Broker via NYTimes

Do Economic Booms Die of Old Age? From Bloomberg

Why do we bother with stock market forecasts? By The Irish Times

Diversification is (Almost) Undefeated from A Wealth of Common Sense

The Super-Secure Quantum Cable Hiding in the Holland Tunnel by Bloomberg

Worse than you thought: inside the secret Fitzgerald probe the Navy doesn’t want you to read via Navy Times

John Bogle, who founded Vanguard and revolutionized retirement savings, dies at 89 from The Inquirer


Sports gamblers are getting valuable data from a former NFL doctor who tweets his injury assessments in real time via CNBC

U.S. Now Says All Online Gambling Illegal, Not Just Sports Bets from Bloomberg


Taking an elevator into space could actually happen. Here’s how by NewScientist

The Real Cost of Cheap Groceries from Fortune

Future of coffee in doubt as 60 per cent of plants now at risk of extinction via The Telegraph

The Government’s Secret UFO Program Funded Research on Wormholes and Extra Dimensions by Motherboard