1) Oil has passed$40 a barrel, continuing a slow but steady recovery. This could be signaling a reawakening of the U.S. shale oil production. This rally allows the oil industry some breathing room with its high debt burden as the shale oil industry seeks to rebuild after the worst price collapse in a generation. This is far different than earlier this year when oil producers were paying to have their oil taken away. OPEC+ continues efforts to re-balance the global oil market, now abundantly clear that everyone loses in a price war.
2) More encouraging economic news with Ford Motor and Fiat Chrysler returning to pre-coronavirus pandemic production schedules in their American plants. Ford plans to fully return to production levels by July 6 while also ramping up their production facilities in Mexico. Although not given any firm dates, Fiat Chrysler is also returning to former production levels as rapidly as possible.
3) Experts are predicting the restaurant business, as we know it, is coming to an end because of the Convid-19 crisis. The industry generates $900 billion dollars a year, employs 15 million people, which is 15 times more than the airline business, which many are so concerned about now. Estimates vary widely of 20 to 80% of the privately own restaurants succumbing to the pandemic. The big franchise restaurant chains are expected to mostly survive and continue, but the independents are expected to fade out. One factor is change, which is coming too fast for small operations to adapt and keep pace with. The general consensus is that the business was in trouble long before the pandemic, struggling with poor working conditions, very thin profit margins, low wages and increasing competition. But it’s not just the restaurants themselves, for behind them is farming, distribution, suppliers and commercial real estate. It’s apparent that the demise of a significant number of independent restaurants will spell a significant change to the American business environment.
4) Stock market closings for – 19 JUN 20:
Dow 25,871.46 down 208.64 Nasdaq 9,946.12 up 3.07 S&P 500 3,097.74 down 17.60
1) An FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) official states that Southwest Airlines should ground 49 of its airliners that had repairs failing to meet legal standards. The official claims there is a high likelihood of a violation of a regulation, order or standard, so the FAA must take immediate action to revoke the certification of the planes. Aircraft in questions is the Boeing 737 NG which were previously owned by foreign carriers, saying inspections should be speeded up, but fall short of grounding the aircraft.
2) Dean Foods, America’s largest milk producer, is filing for bankruptcy. The 94 year old company has struggled in recent years because Americans are drinking less cows milk. In 2019, sales are down 7%, while for the first half of the year, profits are down 14%, with Dean’s stock dropping 80% in a year. The company is straddled with debt and is unable to fully fund its pensions.
3) The retail giant Walmart is experiencing internal strife over its e-commerce operation with the corporate culture of traditional marketing. Apparently, Walmart’s management doesn’t have a real understanding of the complex technology of e-commerce. The impact of Walmart’s plunge into online retailing has reduced Walmart’s already thin profit margins, which are at historic lows. Some high profile acquisitions and other strategic moves have cratered and talented executives on both sides have departed.
4) Stock market closings for – 12 NOV 19:
Dow 27,691.49 unchanged Nasdaq 8,486.09 up 21.81 S&P 500 3,091.84 up 4.83
1) News for budding entrepreneurs. Each year, roughly 30,000 new consumer products are introduced to the market place, but 95% of them fail. The primary reason for failure is lack of preparation, of not understanding the ‘product life cycle’. The life cycle is the time from inception to obsolescence the product experiences. As a product goes through its life cycle, the sales and profit margins will fluctuate, so you must adjust your marketing mix accordingly. The subject is complex and extensive, and a new entrepreneur should spend time researching and understanding the topic before investing in a new product venture.
2) AT&T and Microsoft announced they have agreed on a cloud deal worth more than $2 billion dollars. AT&T will use Microsoft’s Azure cloud service for its computing needs and Office 365 software for its 268,000 people. Additionally, the two companies will work together on edge computing with Microsoft technology deployed alongside AT&T’s up coming 5G network and applications requiring extremely small delays in passing data back and forth such as real time control systems applications.
3) The debt of America is about to hit a record high, a result of cheap money and soaring debt, which has fueled the decade long economic expansion and bull market. There are raising fears of what could happen if there is a shift in the fragile economic balance. The total American debt, both public and private amounts to nearly $70 trillion dollars, with the economy about $21 trillion dollars in size. Difficulties could arise if America should experience a recession with both government and private sectors having trouble meeting their repayments.
4) Stock market closings for – 17 JUL 19: Disappointing quarterly reports pulled the markets down.
Dow 27,219.85 down 115.78 Nasdaq 8,185.21 down 37.59 S&P 500 2,984.42 down 19.62
1) At a time when auto sales are slowing or even sagging, pickup truck sales continue to rise even with hefty yearly price increases. The industry average for full size pickups is $45,260 in 2019. Chevrolet has announced an all new version of its Silverado that tops the $100,000 price. Profit margins for pickups are large compared with standard automobiles, about $10,000 per truck, with high end trucks bringing as much as $20,000.
2) Importers are dodging the tariffs on Chinese goods by entering the U.S. via third countries such as Vietnam. This practice is called transshipment where Chinese goods are minimally processed or altered in a third country then shipped to America as exports from that third country. The administration has spent this last year investigation strategies to best counter this ploy, which cost America billions of dollars in uncollected tariffs.
3) As global demand for oil weakens amid America’s shale oil boom, OPEC considers extending its production cuts for another nine months. The supply growth in oil is expected to exceed the demand growth for 2020 with OPEC members wanting to get ahead of the situation to avoid a drastic drop in world oil prices. Russia in particular is pushing for extension as it strives to raise its production capacity.
4) Stock market closings for- 1 JUL 19:
Dow 26,717.43 up 117.47 Nasdaq 8,091.16 up 84.92 S&P 500 2,964.33 up 22.57