Global Market Comments
January 22, 2021
(JANUARY 20 BIWEEKLY STRATEGY WEBINAR Q&A),
(QQQ), (IWM), (SPY), (ROM), (BRK/A), (AMZN), NVDA), (MU), (AMD), (UNG), (USO), (SLV), (GLD), ($SOX), CHIX), (BIDU), (BABA), (NFLX), (CHIX), ($INDU), (SPY), (TLT)
Below please find subscribers’ Q&A for the January 20 Mad Hedge Fund Trader Global Strategy Webinar broadcast from Incline Village, NV.
Q: What will a significant rise in long term bond yields (TLT) do to PE ratios in general, and high tech specifically?
A: Well, the key question here is: what is “significant”. Is “significant” a move in a 10-year from 120 to 150, which may be only months off? I don’t think that will have any impact whatsoever on the stock market. I think to really give us a good scare on interest rates, you need to get the 10-year up to 3.0%, and that might be two years off. We’re also going to be testing some new ground here: how high can bond interest rates go while the Fed keeps overnight rates at 25 basis points? They can go up more, but not enough to hurt the stock market. So, I think we essentially have a free run on stocks for two more years.
Q: What about the Shiller price earnings ratio?
A: Currently, it’s 34.5X and you want to completely ignore anything from Shiller on stock prices. He’s been bearish on stocks for 6 years now and ignoring him is the best thing you can do for your portfolio. If you had listed to him, you would have missed the last 15,000 Dow ($INDU) points. Someday, he’ll be right, but it may be when the market goes from 50,000 to 40,000, so again, I haven’t found the Shiller price earnings ratio to be useful. It’s one of those academic things that looks great on paper but is terrible in practice.
Q: Do you see any opportunity in China financials with the change of administration, like the (CHIX)?
A: I always avoid financials in China because everyone knows they have massive, defaulted loans on their books that the government refuses to force them to recognize like we do here. So, it’s one of those things where they look good on paper, but you dig deeper and find out why they’re really so cheap. Better to go with the big online companies like Baidu (BIDU) and Alibaba (BABA).
Q: Is it too late to enter copper?
A: No, the high in the last cycle for Freeport McMoRan (FCX) was $50 dollars and I think we’re only in the mid $ ’20s now, so you could get another double. Remember, these commodity stocks have discounted recovery that hasn’t even started yet. Once you do get an actual recovery, you could get another enormous move and that’s what could take the Dow to 120,000.
Q: Do you see the FANGs coming back to life with the earnings results?
A: I think it’ll take more than just Netflix to do that. By the way, Netflix (NFLX) is starting to look like the Tesla of the media industry, so I’d get into Netflix on the next dip. You could get a surprise, out-of-nowhere double out of that anytime. But yes, FANGs will come to life. They’ve been in a correction for five months now, and we’ll see—it may be the end of the pandemic that causes these stocks to really take off. So that’s why I’m running the barbell portfolio and buying the FANGs on weakness.
Q: Are you recommending LEAPS on gold (GLD) and silver (SLV)?
A: Absolutely yes, go out two years with your maturity, you might buy 120% out of the money. That’s where you get your leverage on the LEAPS. Something like a (GLD) January 2023 $210-$220 in-the-money vertical bull call spread and generate a 500% profit by expiration.
Q: Do you foresee a cool off for semiconductors ($SOX) even though there’s been recent news of shortages?
A: No, not really. There are so many people trying to get into these it’s incredible. And again, we may get a time correction where we sideline at the top and then break out again to the upside. This is classic in liquidity-driven markets, which is what we have in spades right now. Thanks to 5G, the number of chips in your everyday devices is about to increase tenfold, and it takes at least two years to build a new chip factory. So, keep buying (NVDA), (MU), and (AMD) on dips.
Q: Where are the best LEAPS prospects (Long Term Equity Participation Securities)?
A: That would have to be in technology—that’s where the earnings growth is. If you go 20% out of the money on just about any big tech LEAPs two years out, to 2023 those will be worth 500% more at expiration.
Q: What about SPACs (Special Purpose Acquisition Company) now, as we’re getting up to five new SPACs a day?
A: My belief is that a SPAC is a vehicle that allows a manager to take out a 20% a year management fee instead of only 1%. And it’s another aspect of the current mania we’re in that a lot of these SPACs are doubling on the first day—especially the electric vehicle-related SPACs. Also, a lot of these SPACs will never invest in anything, but just take the money and give it back to you in two years with no return when they can’t find any good investments…. If you’re lucky. There’s not a lot of bargains to be found out there by anyone, including SPAC managers.
Q: Does natural gas (UNG) fall into the same “avoid energy” narrative as oil?
A: Absolutely, yes. The only benefit of natural gas is it produces 50% less carbon dioxide than oil. However, you can’t get gas without also getting oil (USO), as the two come out of the pipe at the same time; so I would avoid natural gas also. Gas and oil are also about to lose a large chunk, if not all, of their tax incentives, like the oil depletion allowance, which has basically allowed the entire oil industry to operate tax-free since the 1930s.
Q: What about hydrogen cars?
A: I don’t really believe in the technology myself, and when you burn hydrogen, that also produces CO2. The problem with hydrogen is that it’s not a scalable technology. It’s like gasoline—you have to build stations all over the US to fuel the cars. Of course, it produces far less carbon than gas or natural gas, but it is hard to compete against electric power, which is scalable and there’s already a massive electric grid in place.
Q: If you inherited $4 million today, would you cost average into (QQQ), (IWM), or (SPY)?
A: I would go into the ProShares Ultra Technology ETF (ROM), which is double the (QQQ); and if you really want to be conservative, put half your money into (QQQ) or (ROM), and then half into Berkshire Hathaway (BRK/A), which is basically a call option on the industrial and recovery economy. I know plenty of smart people who are doing exactly that.
Q: Is it weird to see oil, as well as green energy stocks, moving up?
A: No, that’s actually how it works. The higher oil and gas prices go, the more economical it is to switch over to green energy. So, they always move in sync with each other.
Q: I heard rumors that Amazon (AMZN) is likely to raise Prime’s annual fee by $10-20 a year in 2021. Will that be a catalyst for the stock to go higher?
A: Yes. For every $10 dollars per person in Prime revenue, Amazon makes $2 billion more in net profit. I would say that’s a very strong argument for the stock going up and maybe what breaks it out of its current 6-month range. By the way, Amazon is wildly undervalued, and my long-term target is $5,000.
Q: Do you think that the spike in Apple (AAPL) MacBook purchases means that computers will overtake iPhones as the revenue driver for Apple in 2021, or is the phone business too big?
A: The phone business is too big, and 5G will cause iPhone sales to grow exponentially. Remember, the iPhones themselves are getting better. I just bought the 12G Pro, and the performance over the old phone is incredible. So yeah, iPhones get bigger and better, while laptops only grow to the extent that people need an actual laptop to work on in a fixed office. Is that a supercomputer in your pocket, or are you just glad to see me?
Q: Share buybacks dried up because of revenue headwinds; do you think they will come back in a massive wave, giving more life to equities?
A: Absolutely, yes. Banks, which have been banned from buybacks for the past year, are about to go back into the share buyback business. Netflix has also announced that they will go buy their shares for the first time in 10 years, and of course, Apple is still plodding away with about $100 or $200 million a year in share buybacks, so all of that accelerates. The only ones you won’t see doing buybacks are airlines and Boeing (BA) because they have such a mountain of debt to crawl out from before they can get back into aggressive buybacks.
Q: Interest rates are at historic lows; the smartest thing we can do is act big.
A: That’s absolutely right; you want to go big now when we’re all suffering so we can go small later and run a balanced budget or even pay down national debt if the economy grows strong enough. The last person to do that was Bill Clinton, who paid down national debt in small quantities in ‘98 and ‘99.
Q: What do you think about General Motors (GM)?
A: They really seem to be making a big effort to get into electric cars. They said they’re going to bring out 25 new electric car models by 2025, and the problem is that GM is your classic “hour late, dollar short” company; always behind the curve because they have this immense bureaucracy which operates as if it is stuck in a barrel of molasses. I don’t see them ever competing against Tesla (TSLA) because the whole business model there seems like it’s stuck in molasses, whereas Tesla is moving forward with new technology at warp speed. I think when Tesla brings out the solid-state battery, which could be in two years, they essentially wipe out the entire global car industry, and everybody will have to either make Tesla cars under license from Tesla—which they said they are happy to do—or go out of business. Having said that, you could get another double in (GM) before everyone figures out what the game is.
Q: Will you update the long-term portfolio?
A: Yes, I promise to update it next week, as long as you promise me that there won’t be another insurrection next week. It’s strictly a time issue. After last year being the most exhausting year in history, this year is proving to be even more exhausting!
Q: Do you see a February pullback?
A: Either a small pullback or a time correction sideways.
Q: Do you think the Zoom (ZM) selloff will continue, or is it done now that the pandemic is hopefully ending?
A: It’s natural for a tech stock to give up one third after a 10X move. It might sell off a little bit more, but like it or not, Zoom is here to stay; it’s now a permanent part of our lives. They’re trying to grow their business as fast as they can, they’re hiring like crazy, so they’re going to be a big factor in our lives. The stock will eventually reflect that.
Good Luck and Stay Healthy.
CEO & Publisher
The Diary of a Mad Hedge Fund Trader
Global Market Comments
October 2, 2020
(SEPTEMBER 30 BIWEEKLY STRATEGY WEBINAR Q&A),
(NVDA), (AMD), (JPM), (DIS), (GM), (TSLA), (NKLA),
(TLT), (NFLX), (PLTR), (VIX), (PHM), (LEN), (KBH), (FXA), (GLD)
Below please find subscribers’ Q&A for the September 30 Mad Hedge Fund Trader Global Strategy Webinar broadcast from Silicon Valley, CA with my guest and co-host Bill Davis of the Mad Day Trader. Keep those questions coming!
Q: Which is a better buy, NVIDIA (NVDA) or Advanced Micro Devices (AMD)?
A: NVIDIA is clearly the larger, stronger company in the semiconductor area, but AMD has more growth ahead of it. You’re not going to get a ten-bagger from NVIDIA from here, but you might get one from Advanced Micro Devices, especially if a global chip shortage develops once we’re out the other side of the pandemic. So, I vote for (AMD), and did a lot of research on that company last week. You can find the report at www.madhedgefundtrader.com but you have to be logged in to see it.
Q: Do you have any thoughts on the JP Morgan Chase Bank (JPM) spoofing cases, where they had to pay about a billion in fines? Is this a terrible time to invest in banks?
A: No, this is a great time to invest in banks because this is the friendly administration to banks now; the next one will be less than friendly. On the other hand, an awful lot of bad news is already in the price; buying these companies at book value or discount of book like JP Morgan, it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity. All the bad behavior they’re being fined on now happened many years ago. So yes, I still like banks, but you really have to be careful to buy them on the dip, just in case they stay in a range. If you stay in a range, you’re buying them call spread, you always make money. The bigger drag on share prices will be the Fed ban on bank share buybacks but that may end after Q4.
Q: Is it time to buy Disney (DIS) after they laid off 28,000?
A: This is a company that practically every fund manager in the company wants to have in their portfolio. However, it could be at least a year before they get back to normal capacity in the theme parks, meaning customers packing in shoulder-to-shoulder. So, it could be another wait-for-a-turnaround, buy-on-the dip situation for sure. This company is so well managed that you’re always going to have to pay up to get into the Mouse House. By the way, my dad did business with Disney during the 1950s so we got Disneyland opening day tickets and I got to shake Walt Disney’s hand.
Q: How desperate is General Motors (GM) in buying the fake Tesla (TSLA) company, Nikola (NKLA), who’ve been exposed as giant frauds? Is GM hopeless?
A: Yes, the future is happening too fast for a giant bureaucracy like General Motors to get ahead of the curve. The fact that they’re trying to buy in outside technologies shows how weak their position is, and of course, it’s a great way to get stuck with a loser, as Tesla selling out to anyone. The Detroit companies are all stuck with these multibillion-dollar engine factories so they can’t afford to go electric even if they wanted to. So, I expect all the major Detroit car companies to go under in the next 5 years or so. Electric cars are already beating conventional internal combustion engines on a lifetime cost basis and will soon be beating them, within 3 years, on an up-front cost basis as well.
Q: Will Netflix (NFLX) pass $600 before the year’s end?
A: I’m expecting a monster after-election rally to new all-time highs in the market and Netflix will be one of the leaders, so easy to tack on another hundred bucks to Netflix. That’s one of my targets for a call spread if we can get in at a lower price. And if you really want to be conservative, buy 2-year LEAPS, two-year call options spreads on Netflix, and you’ll get an easy 100% return on those.
Q: Who will win, Trump or Biden?
A: Neither. You will win. I am not a member of any political party as I would never join any club that would stoop to have me as a member. Groucho Marx told me that just before he died in the early 70s. Don’t ask me, ask the polls. Suffice it to say that the London betting polls are 60%-40% in favor of Biden, having just added another 5% for Biden after the debate. My expectation is that Biden picks up another point in the opinion polls in all the battleground states this weekend. So, Biden will be up anywhere from 6-10% in the 6 states that really count.
Q: What will the market impact be?
A: It makes no difference who wins. The mere fact that the election is out of the way is worth a 10% move up in the stock market.
Q: Should we keep the January 2022 (TLT) 140/143 bear put spread?
A: Absolutely, yes. That’ll be a chip shot and we in fact should go in the money on those number sometime next year. A huge cyclical recovery will create an enormous demand for funds and crowding out by the government will crush the bond market.
Q: Do you think it would be better to wait a week or two to lock in refis on home loans?
A: I think we are at the low in interest rates in the refi market. Even if the Fed lowers interest rates, banks aren’t going to lower their lending rates anymore because there’s no money in it for them. It’s also taking anywhere from 2-4 months to close on a loan, as the backlogs are so enormous. If you can even get a loan officer to return a phone call, you’re lucky. So, I wouldn’t be too fancy here trying to pick absolute bottoms; I would just refi now and whatever you get is going to be close to a century low.
Q: Why so few trade alerts?
A: Well, very simple. We only do trade alerts when we see really good sweet spots in the market. There aren’t sweet spots in the market every day; you’re lucky if you get 1 or 2 in a month. Then we tend to pour in and out of the market very quickly with a lot of alerts. There is no law that says you have to have a position every day of the year. That buys the broker’s yacht, not yours. You should only have positions when the risk reward is overwhelmingly in your favor. That is not now when our market timing index is hugging the 50 level. At 50, you actually have the worst possible entry point for new trades, long or short, so I’d rather wait for it to get away from that level before we get aggressive again. We have gone 100% invested multiple times in the last two months and made a ton of money. So, you just have to wait for your turn to get a sweet spot, and then you’ll make a very quick 10% or 15% in the market. Patience is rewarded in this business.
Q: Would you wait for the election because of the high implied volatility?
A: No, I would not wait. The game is to get in at the lowest price before the election. When the implied volatilities drop after the election, the profits you can make on these deep out of the money LEAPs drop by about half. Thank the volatility while it’s here because it’s creating great trading opportunities now, not in two months after the volatility Index (VIX) has collapsed.
Q: What about Zoom (ZM)?
A: As much as Zoom has had a 10-fold return since we recommended it a year ago, it looks like it wants to go higher. The Robinhood traders just love this stock; it’s a stay at home stock, stay at home is lasting a lot longer than anyone thought. Zoom is just coining it on that.
Q: Is the best outcome a Biden presidency and a Republican Senate?
A: No, that is the worst outcome. When you have a global pandemic going on, you don’t want gridlock in Washington. You want a very active Washington, controlled by a single party that can get things done very quickly. That is not now, which is possibly a major reason that we have the highest Covid-19 death rate in the world. It’s because Washington is doing absolutely nothing to stop the virus; the president won’t even wear a mask, so yes, you need one party to control everything so they can push stuff through. If it works, great, and if not then you kick them out of office next time and let the other guys have a try.
Q: Will property markets be up 20% by the end of the year?
A: If you live in a suburb of New York or San Francisco, then yes it will be up that much. For the whole rest of the country, the average is more like 5% gains year on year. In the burbs of these big money-making cities, prices are going absolutely nuts. My neighbor put his house up and it sold in a week for a $1 million over asking. So, the answer to that is yes, hell yes.
Q: Can you explain why the IPO market is suddenly booming now?
A: A lot of these companies like Palantir (PLTR) have been in development for 20 years, and prices are high. On valuation terms, we are at dot com bubble peaks now. That is the very best time to take your company public and get a huge premium for your stock. When the world is baying for paper assets, you print more of them.
Q: What is the best way to play real estate?
A: Buying the single home building companies like Pulte Homes (PHM), Lennar Homes (LEN), and KB Homes (KBH).
Q: What is your Tesla overview in China?
A: Tesla’s already announced that they’re doubling production of the Shanghai factory, from 250,000 units a year to 500,000. They built the last one in 18 months. It would take (GM) like 5 years to build something like that.
Q: Why has gold (GLD) lost its risk-off status?
A: It’s now a quantitative easing asset—like tech stocks, like bitcoin, and the stay at home stocks. It is being driven much more by QE-driven speculators flush with free cash than anyone looking for a flight to safety bid. When this group sells off, gold drops as well. The only risk-off asset right now is cash. That is the only “no risk” trade.
Q: What does reversal in lumber prices tell you?
A: Lumber was another one of those QE assets—it tripled. But you have this monster increase in new home building, huge demand for new homes in the suburbs, huge import duties leveled by the Trump administration on lumber coming from Canada. Also, a lot of people are getting COVID-19 in the lumber mills. So, they’re having huge problems on the production side in lumber, as a result of the pandemic.
Q: Are there any alternative ways to buy the Australian dollar besides (FXA)?
A: You go into the futures market and buy the Australian dollar futures. That is an entirely new regulatory regime so can be a huge headache. It requires you to register with the Commodities Futures Trading Commission, which is the worst of all the major regulators, but that is an alternative. If you’re an individual and not regulated instead of being a professional money manager, then it’s much easier.
Good Luck and Stay Healthy
CEO & Publisher
The Diary of a Mad Hedge Fund Trader
Summit of Mount Rose
Global Market Comments
September 23, 2020
(AN INSIDER’S GUIDE TO THE NEXT DECADE OF TECH INVESTMENT),
(AMZN), (AAPL), (NFLX), (AMD), (INTC), (TSLA), (GOOG), (FB)
Global Market Comments
June 23, 2020
(HERE ARE THE FOUR BEST PANDEMIC-INSPIRED TECHNOLOGY TRENDS),
(AMZN), (CHWY), (EBAY), NFLX), (SPOT), (TMUS), (ATVI), (V), (PYPL), (AAPL), (MA), (TDOC), (ISRG), (TMDI)
Global Market Comments
May 26, 2020
(MARKET OUTLOOK FOR THE WEEK AHEAD, or LOOKING FOR THE NEW AMERICA),
(FB), (AAPL), (NFLX), (GOOGL), (MSFT), (TSLA), (VIX)
We are getting some tantalizing tastes of the new America that will soon arise from the wreckage of the pandemic.
Companies are evolving their business models at an astonishing rate, digitizing what’s left and abandoning the rest, and taking a meat cleaver to costs.
The corporate America that makes it through to the other side of the Great Depression will earn far more money on far fewer sales. That has been the pattern of every recession for the past 100 years.
While the pandemic may take earnings down from $162 per S&P 500 share in 2019 to only $50 in 2020, it sets up a run at a staggering $500 a share during the coming Roaring Twenties and Golden Age. All surprises will be to the upside and anything you touch will make you look like a genius.
For example, Target’s online sales have exploded 153%, allowing customers to order their groceries online and pick them up at curbside. (TGT) pulled this off in a mere three weeks. Without a pandemic, it would have taken three years to implement such a radical idea, if ever.
Survival is a great motivator.
The (SPY) has been greatly exaggerating the public’s understanding of the stock market. Five FANGs and Tesla (TSLA) with 50%-200% moves off the bottom have made the index look irrationally strong.
The fact is that the majority who have shares have not even made a 50% retracement of this year’s losses. A lot of stocks, especially the reopening ones, are still crawling back of subterranean bottoms.
Investors now have the choice of chasing wildly expensive stocks that have already had spectacular runs, or cheap ones that will go bankrupt by the end of the year. It is a Hobson’s choice for the ages. I expect 10% of the S&P 500 to go under by the end of 2020.
I am spending a lot of time on the ground talking to businesses in California and Nevada and have come to two conclusions. They cannot fathom the true depth of the Depression we are now in and are greatly underestimating the length of time it may take to recover. We may not see the headline unemployment rate under 10% for years unless the government redefines the statistics, which they always do.
The S&P 500 is not the economy. It only employs 25% of America’s private sector labor force accounting for 20% of its total costs. Real estate accounts for another 15%. That leaves 35% of costs that can be completely eliminated or reengineered. This creates enormous share price upside possibilities.
The concentration of the market is the most extreme I have ever seen, with five stocks getting most of the action, (FB), (AAPL), (NFLX), (GOOGL), and (MSFT).
There is a staggering $3.6 trillion in equity allocations sitting on the sidelines in cash. All those who got out at the March bottom are now desperately trying to get back in at the May top. Algorithms are making sure you get out cheap and get back expensive.
It will all end in tears.
One of the stunning developments of the crash has been the near doubling of retail stock trading. Options trading has increased even more. Millions of stimulus check recipients have poured their newfound wealth into the stock market instead of spending it on consumer goods, like they were supposed to.
This explains the over-concentration on the five FANG stocks, (FB), (AAPL), (NFLX), (GOOGL), and (MSFT), the greatest momentum stocks are out age, but in high speculative ones like Tesla (TSLA). The lowest cost online platforms like Tastyworks (click here) and Robin Hood (click here).
All of this is completely irrevocably changing the character of the stock market, perhaps permanently. This may also explain why the Volatility Index remains stuck above$26.
Fed Governor Jerome Powell said no recovery without vaccine, and that’s without a second wave. It could be a long wait. In the meantime, the Atlanta Fed said Q2 US GDP will be down -42%, the weakest quarter in American history. We find out mid-July.
Housing Starts collapsed by 30.2% in April, in the sharpest drop on record. But prices aren’t falling. There is still a massive bid under the market from still-employed millennials. Your home could be you best performing asset this year. The 30-year fixed rate mortgage at 3.0% is a big help.
Weekly Jobless Claims topped 2.4 million, taking the two-month total to a breathtaking 39 million. One out of four Americans is now unemployed, matching the Great Depression peak. US deaths just topped 98,000, 21 times China’s fatality rate where the disease originated and with four times our population. People will keep losing jobs until the death rate peaks, which could be many months, or years.
Leading Economic Indicators crashed by 4.4% for April, showing the economy is still in free fall. So, how much more stock do you want to buy here?
Up to 60% of mall tenants aren’t paying rent, with $7.4 billion skipped in April alone. See my earlier “Death of the Mall” piece. It’s another harsh example of the epidemic accelerating all existing trends.
The market is not reflecting the long-term damage to the economy, says my old buddy and Morgan Stanley colleague David Gerstenhaber. When the bailouts run out, the economy could go into free fall. It could take years to get below 10% unemployment rate again, as many of the layoffs and furloughs are permanent. Keep positions small. Anything could happen. I spent the 1987 crash with David.
Existing Home Sales cratered an incredible 17.8% in April to an annualized 4.88 million units, the largest one-month drop since 2010. Inventory dropped to an all-time low of only 1.7 million, down 19.7%, presenting a 4.1-month supply. Sellers failed to list and those who had a home took them off. Unbelievably, this pushed median home prices to a new all-time high of 286,000, up 7.4% YOY. The biggest sales fall in the west, where the US epidemic started.
China took over Hong Kong, suspending most civil liberties in response to Trump’s multiple attacks. And you know what? There is nothing we can do about it that hasn’t already been done. Talk about going into battle with no dry powder. I’m sure the US 7th Fleet will be out there soon to provoke an attack. Anything to distract attention from the 100,000 Americans who died from Covid-19 on Trump’s watch. As if markets didn’t already have enough to worry about.
When we come out on the other side of this, we will be perfectly poised to launch into my new American Golden Age, or the next Roaring Twenties. With interest rates at zero, oil at $0 a barrel, and many stocks down by three quarters, there will be no reason not to. The Dow Average will rise by 400% or more in the coming decade.
My Global Trading Dispatch performance had another fabulous week, up an awesome +4.97%, and blasting us up to a new eleven-year all-time high of 77%. It has been one of the most heroic performance comebacks of all time.
My aggressive short bond positions really delivered some nice profits, despite the fact the bond market went almost nowhere. That’s because time decay for the June 19 expiration is really starting to kick in. I also got away with a small long in the bond market for the second time in two weeks.
That takes my 2020 YTD return up to +10.86%. That compares to a loss for the Dow Average of -12.6%. My trailing one-year return exploded to 50.85%, nearly an all-time high. My eleven-year average annualized profit exploded to +35.21%.
The only numbers that count for the market are the number of US Coronavirus cases and deaths, which you can find here at https://coronavirus.jhu.edu.
On Monday, May 25, I’ll be leading the neighborhood veterans parade for Memorial Day. Markets are closed.
On Tuesday, May 26 at 9:00 AM, the S&P Case Shiller National Home Price Index is released.
On Wednesday, May 27, at 4:30 PM, weekly EIA Crude Oil Stocks are published.
On Thursday, May 28 at 8:30 AM, Weekly Jobless Claims are announced. We also get the second estimate for the Q1 GDP is printed. At 10:00 AM, April Pending Home Sales are announced.
On Friday, May 29, at 2:00 PM, the Baker Hughes Rig Count follows at 2:00 PM.
As for me, I will be hitting the town beaches at Lake Tahoe for the first time this spring, mask in hand, where waitresses serve you mixed drinks on order. Outdoors will be the only safe place this year.
CEO & Publisher
The Diary of a Mad Hedge Fund Trader
Global Market Comments
May 20, 2020
(THE HYPER-ACCELERATION OF 5G)
(AMZN), (5G), (CCI), (MSFT), (NFLX), (APPL)
I will explain to everyone why a wonky side effect of coronavirus is supercharging the 5G revolution.
Market valuations reflect the state of expected future cash flows in a company.
Under this assumption, some could argue that most tech companies with staying power are almost a good buy at any price.
No-brainers would include a list of Microsoft, Amazon, Apple, and Netflix.
The health scare and the carnage associated with it has brought forward the tech industry as a whole to the forefront of the global economy.
When you mix that with the Fed hellbent on saving everything that has a heartbeat, it sets up conditions for heavy buying in an industry that is going to be king of the global economy anyway.
It is not a question of if, but when and the health phenomenon has accelerated the dramatic migration to tech by showing how business will be conducted in about 15 years.
The change took place in a blistering 4 weeks.
The clearest signal of who is really calling the shots in the equity market is looking at which companies are dragging it up.
Technology is shouldering the responsibility of the equity market by outperforming the broader market with many software companies’ share price higher than before the crisis.
For every Amazon or Microsoft, there is also a Macy’s or JC Penny showing that this is really a stock pickers market.
We have not only learned that tech companies are critical to our functioning as a society, but that large tech companies will be even more central than before even if they are currently losing gross revenue.
The relative gains to tech stemming from the coronavirus are equal or greater than an innovation of a game-changing product and will double the effect of 5G.
We are setting up for the Golden Age of 5G with tech poised to invade even more of the broader equity market.
One rough estimate notes that the 5G industry is expected to add about $40bn in incremental revenue to the semiconductor industry, add 5X growth in mobile data monthly traffic by 2024, and a $4.2tn boost to global economies from revenue streams connected to 5G in the next ten years.
I do agree that currently, the network effect is working in reverse order, but the positive force multiplier, when the economy is riding high again cannot be emphasized enough.
Digital revenue streams will effectively be pumped into every nook and crevice of the digital economy because of current modifications to the business environment.
When business does come back online, investors of physical assets will sell what they can at discounted prices to get into the digital ecosystem causing asset prices to explode as investors chase prices to the sky.
Do you remember commercial real estate guru and Colony Capital’s CEO Tom Barrack?
The company hoped to sell as much as 90% of its $20 billion property portfolio of hotels, warehouses, and other commercial real estate by the end of 2021.
They are also another big investor in nursing homes.
A real-estate pioneer who founded Colony in the early 1990s and is the firm’s chief executive and executive chairman, Barrack said he wanted to go “all digital.”
Rejigging the 29-year-old investment company represented an extreme response to the way technologies have been dismantling cash flow for almost every type of commercial real estate, and Barrack was met with fierce backlash from entrenched stakeholders regarding the new direction.
Commercial real estate and hotel operators have had to fight against the triple whammy of office sharing WeWork, short-term hotel platform Airbnb, and the coronavirus – a lethal three-part cocktail of malicious forces to the “traditional” model.
The coronavirus has proven Barrack was spot on with his synopsis, but he wasn’t able to get rid of Colony’s inventory of commercial real estate in the expeditious way he desired.
Other companies have taken a direct hit like 24 Hour Fitness who is pondering filing for bankruptcy, but I could say the same for a slew of companies like Colony Capital.
Another key manifestation of the current economic malaise is that regulators, antitrust, tax, foreign, and all of the above are less likely to disrupt big tech companies moving forward considering they may be the only ones able to get us out of a similar crisis in the future.
Government officials will be under rapid pressure to boost GDP levels and crimping big tech is counterintuitive to this overall goal.
I don’t agree with the glass half empty crowd who believe Amazon needs to be clamped down because of dominating retail during the time of the virus – if Amazon didn’t exist, the panic could have accelerated to an uncontrollable level creating anarchy in the streets.
The big boys have pushed soft power as a legitimate policy tool with Apple sourcing over 20 million face masks and is now building and shipping face shields.
Big tech is becoming like a mini-government in its own right.
Granted that thousands of bankruptcies from restaurants, nail salons, and yoga studio will be swept into the dust bin of economic history, but once the next iteration of the economic cycle turns up, tech is about to go gangbusters in a way many never thought imaginable.
Then if you bake a little 5G into the pecan pie, investors are justified to be salivating about the tech industry’s prospects.
Any deep-pocketed investors should be cherry-picking every quality 5G tech play possible because they will be the most supercharged sub-sector of tech once the economy is reset.
Any long-term investor with a pulse should buy Crown Castle International Corp. (REIT) (CCI) on any and all dips.
They are the largest owner of cell towers owning over 40,000 in the U.S.