Please find the latest edition of Weekly Digest attached.
Last week and today, vaccine hopes were inoculating investor sentiment, although the newsflow and numbers of cases and deaths continues to be horrendous:
- Fourteen million cases now recorded globally, with 600,000 deaths
- Saturday 260,000 new cases – the record daily number
US Politics Update
Donald Trump’s odds of becoming president faded by 1% last week. Texas polling – reported neck & neck: the last time Texas voted Democrat was to elect Jimmy Carter:
Key topics include:
- Corporate earnings from many global companies important to us and/or markets, including IBM, Novartis, Coca-Cola Company, UBS, Microsoft, Thermo Fisher Scientific and Tesla in the first half of the week. Thursday and Friday see Roche, Intel, Unilever, Union Pacific, Daimler, Twitter and American Express report
- Disagreement amongst analysts covering the same stock, or earnings estimate dispersions, are high in part due to lack of guidance from company managements given the unknown impacts of the covid-19 – the number of companies issuing guidance for 2Q2020 is 54% below the five-year average
- US fiscal cliff. In politics, the primary focus will be on the “fiscal cliff” that could hit the $600/wk Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation benefit which expires on 25 July without being replaced. This would catalyse a 60% drop in income for those on these benefits. Replacing the benefits is part of overall extended stimulus package initiatives being proposed by the rival political parties. The House Democrats are seeking a $3.4tn spending package, Republicans are looking to limit the new spending to $1tnn.