David Fuller and Eoin Treacy's Comment of the Day
Category - General

    Email of the day on timelines to implementing new technologies

    About the development of technologies in Batteries and EV, I think a great standpoint is that of Umicore (UMI BB), which is one of the main producers of cathodes. They had their Capital Market Day in June, and with a bit of patience one can follow the webcast on their site here:  , and specifically the part presented by Mr Vandeputte 

    One of the points made is that manufacturing autos is complex to the point no one takes on technological risk with a light heart, so the technology currently in use will probably stay around for a years before we get some leap forward into something different such as solid-state batteries.

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    China's New Strategy for Curbing World's Worst Stock Slide

    This article from Bloomberg news may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    Economic policy makers including Vice Premier Liu He, who also weighed in on Friday, are now left walking a tightrope. To fortify the nation’s negotiating position on trade with the Trump administration, they need to stem the $3 trillion stock rout and support growth at home -- all without giving up on their goal of containing soaring debt levels.

    "China is under pressure on multiple fronts," said Michael Every, head of Asia financial markets research at Rabobank in Hong Kong. "Logically, all this pushes China to make a deal, yet I don’t think there is a deal to be had."

    While the Shanghai Composite opened lower on Friday morning after the officials’ statements, it rallied in the afternoon and closed with a 2.6 percent gain. Some investors speculated that China’s “National Team” of state-backed funds stepped in to add some oomph to policy makers’ verbal intervention.

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    U.K. Is Said to Drop Brexit Demand on Irish Border to Ease Deal

    This article by Tim Ross, Ian Wishart and Dara Doyle for Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    The problem for pro-Brexit camp in May’s Cabinet is that what is agreed as a fix for the Irish border could morph into a long-term status quo for the whole U.K. Businesses have long called for the U.K. to remain in the customs union to ease trade with the bloc, an option EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier has repeatedly offered as a way out of the stalemate. In parliament, the main opposition Labour party is also pushing for a customs union.

    The thorny question of how to avoid a hard border between the U.K. and the Irish Republic has held up progress in Brexit talks since March. Time is running out for the EU and the U.K. negotiating teams to settle the terms of the divorce and sketch out the future trading arrangements before Britain leaves the bloc on March 29.

    A summit of EU leaders in Brussels this week had been billed as the moment when the exit agreement would be struck but instead broke up with major issues still unresolved. The key question remains how to come up with a backstop for the Irish border.

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    These ten mines will make money even if gold price falls to $550

    This article by Vladimir Basov may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    These Top 10 lowest cost gold mines are all below all-in-sustaining costs (AISC) $550/oz level and will prove profitable – even if the price falls 50%.

    Mining Intelligence looked at costs at primary gold mines and found 10 operations that would still make money, even if gold halves in value from today's levels. AISC metrics has been taken as a basis of comparison and ranking.

    Since the World Gold Council (WGC) published a Guidance on AISC in June 2013, which introduced a transparent standardised production cost estimation metrics intended to be used commonly by the global gold industry, a majority – yet not all – of the leading publicly-trading gold producing companies successfully adopted WGC’s recommendations and implemented AISC to their official reports.

    AISC metrics provide a more comprehensive look at mine economics than the traditional "cash costs" approach that many companies may interpret arbitrarily – and it includes such important expenses as overhead outlays and capital used in ongoing exploration, mine development and production.

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    Stocks Tumble, Treasuries Surge as Concerns Mount

    This article by Randall Jensen and Vildana Hajric for Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    Earnings remain in focus though the depth of the sell-off overshadowed most major reports. Weak results from Germany’s SAP and Taiwan Semiconductor dragged American tech indexes lower.

    Earnings misses from several U.S. industrial firms and a Bank of America downgrade of the housing sector fueled worries that higher interest rates and the trade war are hitting profits.

    Philip Morris surged on strong demand, buoying consumer shares. Elsewhere, emerging-market assets also fell after declines in Europe and Asia. The Japanese yen gained the most in a week and gold traded near three-month highs.

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    Ericsson profit smashes forecasts as 5G buzz grows

    This article by Dominic Chopping for MarketWatch may be of interest to subscribers. Here it is in full:

    Ericsson AB's ERIC, +5.15% third-quarter net profit exceeded estimates by a significant margin as the telecommunications equipment company continued to keep a tight rein on costs while seeing strong demand from operators racing to launch new fifth-generation networks.

    Ericsson's quarterly net profit ballooned to 2.75 billion Swedish kronor ($307.7 million) from a loss of SEK3.56 billion as sales rose 8.9% to SEK53.81 billion.

    Analysts polled by FactSet had expected a net profit of SEK630 million on sales of SEK50.28 billion.

    The gross margin rose to 36.5% from 26.9% while the operating margin grew to 6.0% from a negative margin of 7.4%.

    "We continue to invest in our competitive 5G-ready portfolio to enable our customers to efficiently migrate to 5G," said Chief Executive Borje Ekholm. "Strong sales were mainly driven by a continued high activity level primarily in North America."

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    Email of the day on technological innovation

    I continue to be amazed at the tremendous pace of technological advances in the EV and EV battery sector, including critical improvements in the time required to recharge, the longevity of the charge and the methods available to charge.  You may have already seen the following announcement as it is a few months old, and may well be aware of these developments. However, I have personally only just seen this article today, stating that China is in the process of building sections of a motorway that is electrically conductive and can recharge vehicles whilst continuing to drive at speeds up to 120km/hr (75mph). 


    Looking further into the process that enables such a development, apparently adding graphene to the concrete renders the road surface electrically conductive and enables it to recharge vehicles.  


    There is also a pilot road currently being tested in Sweden that charges specially designed vehicles from an electrified track in the surface of the road.  I dare to venture that the latest technology being utilised in China would already render obsolete the cumbersome Swedish system!  


    You often mention how the pace of technological developments influences markets and economies, however I am struggling to keep up with so many new developments in the various sectors. 

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