Weekend Reading: 24-25 October 2020

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: Intel’s margins tumble as customers shift to cheaper chips, shares slide 10% – Reuters The World has Grown Weary of US Financial Control – Justin Honse Goldman Sachs to pay $3 billion to settle 1MDB charges, reduce CEO pay – Business Insider Potential Impacts On Oil Industry Of A

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Macro Afternoon

Risk sentiment is mixed today here in Asia following the final US presidential debate as the majors are battling it out against the USD with gold hovering just above the $1900USD per ounce level as momentum reverts from its overbought condition and Bitcoin slips from its mammoth $13000 top: The Shanghai Composite is slowly putting


MB Fund named finalist in 2020 IFA Excellence Awards

We are proud to announce that the MB Fund has again been named a finalist in the upcoming 2020 ifa Excellence Awards in the “Innovator of the Year – Company” category. It’s been a big year for the MB Fund. We: Had our third birthday in July: marking 3 years of fund performance that we’re


Neo-Nazis duke it out in Aussie Parliament

Via The Australian comes the brawling of Neo-Nazis: In a submission to the senate inquiry into Scott Morrison’s Foreign Relations Bill — which aims to give Canberra a veto over state government and university deals with overseas powers — ambassdor Cheng Jingye also accused other Beijing critics of having “minds of malice”. Addressing the senator


Melbourne set to reopen on Sunday

With Melbourne’s COVID-19 infections plummeting: Premier Daniel Andrews has finally ceded to common sense and flagged significant reopening on Sunday: Victoria has broken the back of the nation’s coronavirus second wave. Premier Daniel Andrews on Friday declared that restrictions in Victoria would be overhauled on Sunday. Mr Andrews said there would be a “significant statement


Shareholders revolt at ProfitKeeper largesse

Last month we reported how the Morrison Government’s JobKeeper subsidy has been an absolute boon for Australian business owners, juicing company dividends and profits. This was reflected in the latest national accounts for the June quarter, which showed that employee wages & salaries fell by 3.3% over the quarter while company profits soared by 13.7%:


Environmentalists must confront population problem

Fresh from shamelessly pumping mass immigration propaganda, The Conversation has published a more balanced article calling for environmentalists to confront the world’s bulging population: Brown recently declared the world’s population must start to decline before 2100, telling The Australian newspaper: “We are already using more than what the planet can supply and we use more than the


Locally acquired COVID-19 infections crater

Australia recorded only 10 new COVID-19 infections overnight, down from 21 yesterday: However, only one was locally acquired with the rest returned travelers in hotel quarantine: Victoria’s 7-day average infection rate has cratered to just 2.4: And Melbourne’s 14-day average has cratered to just 5.5: NSW recorded zero new local cases, with 7 overseas acquired


Another Victorian contact tracing fail?

Department of Health and Human Services Testing Commander Jeroen Weimar revealed yesterday that 500 people were instructed to self-isolate for 14 days after a grade 5 student tested positive for the virus in Victoria. The student, who attended East Preston Islamic College, was confirmed positive on Wednesday, resulting in the rapid closure of the entire


Melbourne listings rocket after real estate restrictions ease

From Eliza Owen, Head of Research Australia at CoreLogic: One of the lessons learned about the property market through COVID-19 is that listings numbers have been extremely responsive to changes in social distancing policies. Despite an extended lockdown, Melbourne is no exception. Since onsite, private inspections resumed on the 28th of September, new listings volumes


The Strayan Weekly: Melbourne wins “world’s most leavable city” award

Sir Fomo McSpruikerson is an expatriate billionaire and proud proprietor of The Strayan, a vanity media project designed to boost his assets.  Melbourne wins 2020 World’s Most Leaveable City Award Melbourne has been awarded the prestigious “World’s Most Leaveable City” Award for the first time since the early 1990’s. Melbourne shocked a tightly contested field


Australian flash PMI grinds higher

Via Markit: The recovery in the Australian private sector economy gathered momentum during October amid a further easing of containment measures, according to the latest PMI data. Business activity growth accelerated at the start of the fourth quarter, led by the service sector. The upturn in output was accompanied by a further rise in new


Macro Morning

Wall Street was able to find some confidence overnight even though there was still no progress on fiscal stimulus measures. European stocks were flat at best while the USD returned to strength, mainly due to the fall in Euro. Commodities were again mixed with oil coming back while copper fell alongside gold, while Bitcoin shoots


Daily iron ore price update (CISA bears)

Iron ore prices for October 22, 2020: Spot down. Paper down. Empty apartment sales have stabilised but that is not enough. They must grow or steel demand will shrink as catch-up growth rolls off: CISA is bearish: That’s only mill inventories. Trader inventories are also immense, combined for easily the highest ever seasonally-adjusted: There should


Australian dollar holds as virus runs amok

DXY was up last night: The Australian dollar was roughly flat: Gold fell: Oil rose: Metals fell: Miners were mixed: EMs stocks stalled: Junk too: US yields backed up some more: Stocks firmed: Wesptac has the wrap: Event Wrap US September home sales surged 9.4% to an annualised 6.54m homes (est. 6.30m) on the back of record low


What happened to following the COVID-19 science?

During his daily press conferences on Victoria’s COVID-19 infections, Premier Daniel Andrews regularly tells us that he is just “following the science” and the “super computer” with regards to the state’s draconian lockdowns. This “science” saw blunt measures like nightly curfews, 5km travel limits, one hour exercise limits, playground bans, golf bans, and tennis bans


Links 23 October 2020

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: Bill Gates: ‘Shutting down’ economy not nearly enough to stem climate change” – The Blaze Robots Encroach on Up to 800 Million Jobs Around the World – Bloomberg Tesla’s autonomous driving could displace $8 trillion worth of enterprise value in the market: Analyst – CNBC Meet The Network That


Macro Afternoon

Risk sentiment is trending down again today here in Asia following the repeated unease on Wall Street overnight, going into the last US presidential “debate”. The USD remains firmly down against the majors with Yen still quite firm while the Australian dollar consolidates above the 71 level. Gold is trying to regain its lost ground


Peta Credlin hits back at left media over hotel quarantine

Sky News’ Peta Credlin has again forensically unpicked inconsistencies, lies and obfuscation from the Victorian Government during the Hotel Quarantine Inquiry. In the video above, Credlin explicitly calls for Inquiry chair, Jennifer Coate, to call back witnesses for oral testimony instead of relying on signed affidavits written by lawyers and worded in ways to obfuscate:


Borat stings Guliani

I know it’s PR but…well…it’s Borat: The news is appropriate enough: [Rudi] Giuliani went to the hotel room thinking he was being interviewed about the Trump administration’s COVID-19 response. The young woman is flirtatious with him and invites him to the bedroom, which is rigged with hidden cameras. Giuliani then asks for her phone number


MB Fund Podcast: Is Superannuation Distorting Investment Markets? With Dr Cameron Murray

Our attention turns this week to what is most Australian’s second biggest asset, Superannuation. Super means a lot things to every Australian. For some it’s a tax efficient long term savings vehicle that if managed well can provide security and reassurance that retirement will be comfortable and reliable. For others it is an annoying, mandated


Sydney’s auction market continues to strengthen

CoreLogic has released its final auction clearance results for last weekend, which reveals that the final national clearance rate retraced to 66.2% from 66.4% the prior week: Sydney’s auction clearance strengthened to 69.1% from 67.2% the prior week, whereas Melbourne’s rose to 60.2% from 58.6%. As noted by CoreLogic: There were 1,131 capital city homes


Taxpayers fleeced twice by Foxtel

Recall that Foxtel in July received $10 million from taxpayers to televise “women’s, niche and other under-represented sports”. This $10 million subsidy came on top of $30 million already provided by taxpayers to Foxtel in 2017. It also came at the same time as the Morrison Government slashed funding to the ABC by $84 million.