E Nothing Is Calm, Nothing Is Bright

Finance

*Standard Life Aberdeen picked itself up from the floor in London Friday, moving up over GBX 252 from 220. It is suffering from the distaste for managed funds as investors switch to automaton index-tracking exchange-traded funds, although we sold because of revelations of hidden Israeli positions in a fund set up to consolidate control of Aberdeen closed-end funds. SLFPY.

*Gold is up and so is SPDR Gold, GLD. Frankincense and myrrh were not quoted.

*Banco Santander of Spain is up. SAN has an emerging markets Latin America focus but its UK branch network faces fines of £23 bn for misselling personal payment insurance to retail borrowers.

*I am still trying to extract from E-trade the final gain to be reported to the IRS for our Barclays non-cumulative Preferreds D series 5 which were acquired Dec. 18, I think at $25. We bought them Dec. 11, 2009 at $24.23 so the gain will be modest, but it is still shockingly poor service at year-end.

*Treasury Secy Steve Mnuchin is reported to be calling banks to tell them Pres. Trump did not threaten to sack Fed Chair Jerome Powell. As nobody believes Mnuchin, US markets are down again.

Europe Winners

*A Wall Street myth states that if copper prices are not falling, a recession is not imminent. Note that despite the blues in London yesterday, Antofagasta, Chile copper miner listed there, gained 3.8%. ANFGF.

*London took a slide, not too surprising, given that trading will stop for two days. European markets also suffered from nerves, among other reasons because of fear of the US government shut in and rumors that Pres. Trump wants to fire Fed chief Powell.

*Swiss drugmakers Roche and Novartis split, RHHBY up, and NVS down.

*Greencore Group, maker of ready meals for Britons and Irish, rose 14.74% in London on Monday. Perhaps stock investors noticed that they were buying its products for the holiday. There was no news but lots of food buying yesterday. Another argument is that GNCGY will pay a special semi-annual dividend of 4.47% Jan. 9 after selling its US arm to a private capital group. It is thereby informing the market that there will be no new adventures in the short term. (The ex-div date has passed so that is not lurking in the shoppers.)

*Anheuser-Busch-InBev lost 1.4% despite its market-shocker deal last week to make brews with marijuana content under a deal by its Labatt sub with Tilray of Canada. Each will put up $25 mn to research beverages infused with cannabinol, which has no psycho-active ingredients. One reason is the euro is losing froth.

*E.ON, EONGY, the German ute, is down 2.2%. Ich habe kein Ahnung warum. No idea why.

Cement and Industry

*Cemex is growing thanks to intervention, if nothing else, it was up another 0.6% yesterday. CX.

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Comments

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William K. 1 month ago Member's comment

Interesting indeed. Interesting interpretations as well.

Mark Borkowski 1 month ago Contributor's comment

Vivian Lewis provides some good information on selected companies and stocks. She profiles a few winners and most of the notable loosers. A summary of some political events and more. The message that comes through in a non descript way is that the military goods market is good and healthy and that "peace on earth is not in view". Pity.

Danny Straus 1 month ago Member's comment

Always impressed by your knowledge of the Israel market, and #Teva in particular. $TEVA