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

    Why cheap coffee means more migrants at the border

    This article by Paul Hicks and Dan McQuillan for the Houston Chronicle may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    In recent years, their challenges have increased. Climate change stretches the dry season, or makes rainfall erratic. Last year some farms went up to 45 days without rain. The farmers watched their maize and bean plants wilt and die. Then they reaped only more debt from their meager coffee harvest.

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    China Defaults Hit Record in 2018. 2019 Pace Is Triple That

    This article form Bloomberg News may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    China continues to press banks to extend credit to the private sector, and small and medium-sized companies especially. The latest move came Monday, when the central bank loosened some reserve-requirement rules for lenders. But President Xi Jinping’s team has also focused on shrinking the shadow-banking system, where credit decisions were made with less regulatory oversight and where it was easier to build up unsustainable leverage.

    It’s that funding squeeze that explains the default surge that began in late 2017 and continues today. By contrast, 2016 was more a story of China’s push to shrink excess industrial capacity having reverberating effects in credit markets. “Short bond tenors mean the companies need to refinance frequently,” and weaker ones will likely have difficulty, analysts including Hong Kong-based Nino Siu at Moody’s Investors Service wrote in a note last month. “Banks are reluctant to lend to weaker companies. Additionally, shadow banking, on which weaker Chinese companies rely, continues to contract as the government tightens regulation,” she and her colleagues wrote.

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    Match Group Beats Estimates as Tinder Popularity Grows Abroad

    This article by Olivia Carville for Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    Match, which is owned by billionaire Barry Diller’s IAC/InterActiveCorp, runs dozens of dating sites like Tinder, OKCupid, Plenty of Fish and Hinge. But the bulk of the company’s earnings gains were fueled by Tinder, which lured in more than 384,000 new subscribers in the quarter, boosting direct revenue 38 percent from the year earlier period.

    The online dating app, where users swipe right to indicate interest in a potential date, now boasts 4.7 million global subscribers. Overall, Match’s average subscribers increased 16 percent with most of the new users flowing in from outside North America.

    “The world is changing," said Mandy Ginsberg, chief executive officer of Match. “I’ve been here a long time and 100 percent of the revenue used to be in the U.S. and now the growth and more revenue is outside of the U.S."

    With arranged marriages on the decline in India and the stigma towards online dating eroding in Japan, Ginsberg is concentrating on international expansion. There are more than 400 million single people living outside North America and Europe, two-thirds of whom have not yet tried a dating product, according to Match. Ginsberg recently revamped the company’s leadership team in Asia -- appointing general managers in Tokyo, Seoul and Delhi -- to try and grow Match’s footprint across the continent.

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    EU Cuts German Growth Outlook, Sees 'Pronounced' Euro-Area Risks

    This article by Viktoria Dendrinou for Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    Most of the downgrades were less severe than in the previous report in February, apart from Germany, where the 2019 prediction was slashed to just 0.5 percent from 1.1 percent. Officials in Brussels warned that downside risks to the region’s outlook remain “prominent.”

    The forecasts reflect more pronounced weakness in the region, which has stumbled due to a slowdown in the global economy, unresolved trade disputes and “exceptional weakness” in manufacturing. Meanwhile sentiment has taken a hit from disruptions in the auto industry, social unrest, and uncertainty related to Brexit.

    German carmaker BMW said on Tuesday that the economic backdrop is “increasingly challenging” and business conditions are “expected to remain volatile.”

    “As initial deadlines for U.S.-China trade negotiations and Brexit have passed without resolution, various uncertainties continue to loom large,” the European Commission said in its quarterly report. “An escalation of trade tensions could prove to be a major shock.”

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    Email of the day - on oil prices

    “May I clarify something? The item denoted as Oil (1st West Texas) (CL1 COMB COMDTY) in the Chart Library - is this the Spot Price for WTI? Or is it the near-term futures price for WTI? Thanks in advance.“

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    Bitcoin Bounds Toward $6,000 as More Institutions Embrace Tokens

    This article by Todd White and Eric Lam for Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    Fidelity Investments, which began a custody service to store Bitcoin earlier this year, plans to buy and sell it for institutional customers within a few weeks, according to a person familiar with the matter.

    “Fidelity alone doesn’t move the entire needle, but Fidelity with E*Trade and Ameritrade and Robin Hood and a whole host,” said Chu, whose firm is a blockchain investment and advisory company. “You’re seeing a critical mass of these types of asset managers and brokers providing retail exposure and retail access to crypto.”

    Some investors who expect Bitcoin to break above $6,000 see it quickly finding a new resistance level. The token will likely find fresh headwinds in the $6,000-$6,500 range, said Charlie Morris, a fund manager and founder of cryptocurrency price discovery site ByteTree.com in London.

    “It would be unsurprising if that former support became resistance -- something that is quite normal in markets,” Morris said.

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.