Here are Doug Kass' top thoughts on some of the biggest stories of the week. Update on What's Up with P&G I placed Procter & Gamble ( PG) on my Best Ideas List as a short on Aug. 31 at $92.56. The shares closed Thursday at $88.23 and, as of this writing, are up $1.57 in premarket trading. Thursday, it was announced that activist investor Nelson Peltz may have won his board seat. Frankly, if the proxy results stand, and Peltz secures his seat on the P&G board, I suspect he will have little impact and that the relationship with Peltz will remain contentious. I am a short seller in PG today based on my negative consumer packaged goods thesis. Originally published Nov. 16 at 9:13 a.m. EST Doug Kass
Kingdom Holding's plan to borrow money to fund new investments has stalled because owner Prince Alwaleed bin Talal has been detained in Saudi Arabia's anti-corruption crackdown, according to four banking sources familiar with the matter. Kingdom had approached banks to obtain the loan, but the financing plan has been held up because the lenders are worried about potential repercussions if they lend to the prince's company, the sources said. One of the sources, who was approached for the loan, said it would have been worth roughly 5 billion riyals ($1.3 billion).
Societe Generale says a 10-year Treasury yield above 2.5% could result in a US equity sell-off. If the yield for the 10-year benchmark note climbs above the crucial threshold of 2.5% that could start working against US stocks that are already close to the most expensive since the dot-com bubble, according to strategists at Societe Generale. Treasurys reaching that level would imply 7% downside for US equities, while an increase to 2.75% could translate to a 15% drop, Societe Generale data shows.
Alibaba is rising after buying a major stake in a Chinese grocer. Shares of Alibaba are up 2.33% to $189.45 on Monday after the company bought a $2.87 billion stake in China's largest grocery operator. Alibaba said on Monday it would make an investment in Sun Art Retail Group, which owns 8.2% of China's total grocery market.
An electronic payment app that allows people to pay for goods and services in gold has been launched by fintech firm Glint. Released Monday, the app — also called Glint — allows users to link a Mastercard credit card to their phone, which then lets them buy physical gold bullion that is stored in a Swiss vault. Jason Cozens, the company's chief executive and co–founder, said Monday that quantitative easing policy and the collapse of some banks have made many realize that traditional accounts are not a risk-free option. "Since the financial crisis people are starting to understand that purchasing power of their money isn't safe," he said. On its website, Glint says that once either a currency
A shift in the bond market is giving investors and Federal Reserve officials pause about the economic outlook. Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker says the central bank must avoid inverting the yield curve, or allowing 10-year Treasury yields to slip beneath two-year rates. The Federal Reserve's plan to keep raising interest rates could soon run into a wall of its own making: low long-term borrowing costs that signal expectations for weak economic growth and anemic investment returns for the foreseeable future.
The PowerShares QQQ ETF (QQQ) has had a powerful 2017, rallying some 30% so far on the year. But one industry not enjoying such a great ride? Cyber security. That's an interesting note, TheStreet's Jim Cramer pointed out on CNBC's "Stop Trading" segment Monday. That's very surprising, given how important securing personal data has become. One only needs to look to the Equifax (EFX) hack to understand why companies are looking to increase their cyber security. Cramer also pointed out the 8% growth in security revenue for Cisco Systems (CSCO) in the company's recent earnings results. Palo Alto Networks (PANW) reports on Monday after the close, so it will be interesting to see what management has
Warren Buffett and Bill Gates have both founded highly profitable companies, so it's safe to say that they've made quite a few smart business decisions. In a 1998 panel discussion with students at the University of Washington's business school, the two billionaires pinpointed the best business decisions they ever made. Buffett said his best business decision was simply starting a career in investing because he enjoys what he does. Luckily, said Buffett, this has worked out well for him. "You'll see plenty of times when you get chances to do things that just shout at you," he said. "When that happens, you have to take a big swing." Alluding to his own experiences as an investor, Buffett said that
For all its technical complexity, Uber is a relatively easy-to-understand business. The company doesn't own physical assets or employ drivers. Instead, its software connects people who want rides with people willing to drive them, and Uber takes a cut of the fares. The mechanics and financials of this type of middleman business -- or a "two-sided marketplace," if you want to make small talk at Silicon Valley holiday parties -- is familiar thanks to eBay, Priceline, Apple's mobile app store and many other companies with similar foundations. But now Uber Technologies Inc. appears to be wading into owning physical assets, which calls into question what its ultimate business model will be. Yes, Uber
Thousands of traditional retail stores are closing down as more people shop online. A chart from T. Rowe Price shows that investors who stuck with the sector are most likely badly burned. Amazon's stock performance has far outpaced a basket of traditional retailers and the broader stock market.
Nov.20 -- Jason Trennert, chairman at Strategas Research Partners, discusses the outlook for U.S. tax reform. He speaks with Bloomberg's Vonnie Quinn on "Bloomberg Markets."
MI Bitcoin hit a fresh all-time high of $8,222 per coin Monday morning, according to data from Markets Insider. Bitcoin has been on a tear over the last week as more traditional financial services firms dive into the nascent market for digital coins
Value investing is easily one of the most popular ways to find great stocks in any market environment. One way to find these companies is by looking at several key metrics and financial ratios, many of which are crucial in the value stock selection process. A key metric that value investors always look at is the Price to Earnings Ratio, or PE for short.
Stocks recently featured in the blog include NVIDIA NVDA, Priceline PCLN, TripAdvisor TRIP, Intel INTC and Advanced Micro Devices AMD. Earnings season is drawing to a close with most of the S&P 500 having reported already, making NVIDIA easily the hottest earnings from last week. The online travel agents continued to disappoint, with both Priceline and TripAdvisor shares plummeting.
The room for error in most money decisions can leave you feeling pressured to make all the right moves now. The good news is we can learn from other people’s experiences to help us make better choices today so we don’t end up saddled with regrets about
Sovereign bonds rose the most in a year in India after the central bank scrapped a debt sale due later this week that was designed to reduce banking liquidity. The Reserve Bank of India won’t proceed with a 100-billion-rupee ($1.54 billion) auction under its open-market operations on Thursday after a review of liquidity conditions, it said after the market closed Friday. The central bank has auctioned 900 billion rupees of the securities since the start of July. India’s government bonds have slumped since August due to a potential end to monetary easing, concern about rising supply and possible fiscal slippage. They jumped at the start of trading on Friday when Moody’s Investors Services upgraded
announced on Monday that its cloud platform, Amazon Web Services (AWS), has attained authorization to operate workloads up to the Secret U.S. security classification level. "The AWS Secret Region is readily available to the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) through the IC's Commercial Cloud Services (C2S) contract with AWS.
Consumers are getting the word that taxpayer-subsidized health plans are widely available for next year for no monthly premium or little cost, and marketing companies say they're starting to see an impact on sign-ups. "Free Obamacare Coverage in 2018," says an online pitch from insurance broker eHealth, showing a young woman with a big smile. HealthSherpa, a private website that focuses on signing people up for Affordable Care Act coverage, said nearly 1 in 5 of its customers thus far will be paying no monthly premium.
Toshiba Corp's plan to raise some $5.4 billion through a sale of new shares will help it avoid a delisting, but will also see more than 30 overseas investors, including activist funds, own 35 percent of the embattled conglomerate. The move, decided at a board meeting on Sunday, will allow Toshiba to pay off billions of dollars in liabilities at its bankrupt U.S. nuclear power business, Westinghouse. Toshiba's shares were, however, down just 5 percent in early afternoon trade as the delisting risk was removed and as the capital raising had been expected.
Apple Inc AAPL loyalists may have to wait a little longer to bring home Siri-integrated HomePod. Per a statement, an Apple spokesperson was quoted by TechCrunch saying, “We can't wait for people to experience HomePod, Apple's breakthrough wireless speaker for the home, but we need a little more time before it's ready for our customers. Apart from Home Pod, the report added, Apple has also delayed the launch of Apple Pay Cash.
Amazon is steamrolling the retail industry, but old-line Wal-Mart is hitting back — and producing impressive numbersBloomberg, iStockphotoWal-Mart’s online sales in the third quarter jumped 50% from a year earlier. The Bentonville, Ark.-based company’s investments in its employees, its online offerings and delivery, and its stores are paying off in a major way. Investors in Seattle-based Amazon should pay attention.
The holiday season is kicking off this week with Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday in the spotlight. Per Kensho, a group of S&P 500 retail stocks, on average, has generated 5% returns in the period spanning one week before to one week after Black Friday since 2007. This is compares favorably with average returns of 3% for the S&P 500 and 4.5% for consumer discretionary stocks (see: all the Consumer Discretionary ETFs here).
Tencent shares hit a record high Monday, bringing its valuation to over $500 billion. The technology firm is the first from China to reach the landmark valuation as it closes in on the likes of Facebook and Amazon. The Hong Kong-listed internet giant, known for its WeChat messaging app and online games, saw shares rally to 420 Hong Kong dollars ($53.76) on Monday. Its market capitalization, or total value of all the shares in circulation, stood at 3.99 trillion Hong Kong dollars ($510.7 billion) at the market close. Tencent's market cap is above Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, which stands at $474.15 billion, and Baidu at $82.97 billion. It is closing in on U.S. technology firms including Facebook,
Many of these suppliers' stocks have posted mixed results so far in 2017, failing to match the tech icon's breakout to an all-time high while highlighting growing risk if iPhone X sales fail to please shareholders. Analog Devices CEO Vincent Roche is quick to point out that the company is more than an Apple supplier, manufacturing a variety of innovative products that include autonomous driving chip sets, but market players understand that the Cupertino connection has a major impact on Analog Devices' share price.