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

    Unity has changed its pricing model, and game developers are pissed off

    This article from the Verge may be of interest. Here is a section:

    “Unity Plus is being retired for new subscribers effective today, September 12, 2023, to simplify the number of plans we offer,” Unity wrote. “Existing subscribers do not need to take immediate action and will receive an email mid-October with an offer to upgrade to Unity Pro, for one year, at the current Unity Plus price.”

    A Unity Plus subscription was about $400 per year. After that one year, however, it stands to reason that those former Plus users will have to pay the new Pro rate, which is currently over $2,000 per year.

    Developers are also concerned these new fees could impact digital preservation efforts as now game makers are seemingly incentivized to delist older games so they aren’t charged for them. There’s also the question of how Unity plans on tracking installs and whether or not such tools run afoul of government privacy laws. Here’s a tweet from the official Unity account explaining how it intends to monitor a game’s installs.

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    Cocoa Hovers Near 12-Year High on West Africa Supply Concerns

    This article from Dow Jones may be of interest. Here is a section:

    Cocoa futures traded near a 12-year high on worries about West African output.

    Prices are up more than 40% year-to-date and are expected to keep rising, supported by concerns that global supplies will remain strained amid adverse weather conditions. Heavy rain in West Africa already has knocked young pods from trees and facilitated the spread of black pod disease, which thrives in humid conditions.

    Uncertainty also remains over the El Nino weather phenomenon, with analysts at StoneX anticipating that impacts will persist into early next year.

    “The long-term uptrend in the cocoa market remains in place, as low production out of West Africa is expected to keep supplies tight,” ADM Investor Services wrote in a note on Monday.

    Ivory Coast, the world’s top cocoa producer, is in the midst of negotiations over new environmental rules for European exports, and Ghana has hiked farm-gate prices in an effort to fend off smuggling. Still, there has been recent optimism that good weather could support a better harvest in Ivory Coast and some areas of Nigeria.

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    Nuclear power could see its biggest expansion in decades, leading to increased demand for uranium

    This article from MarketWatch may be of interest. Here is a section:

    "Growing interest in nuclear energy is being seen around the world," said Freebairn, noting this his company has been highlighting events in Eastern Europe and North America.

    For now, nuclear power provides around 10% of the world's electricity, according to the International Energy Agency.

    It comes from roughly 440 reactors in 31 countries with about 390 gigawatt electrical (GWe) capacity, according to UxC's Hinze. If total power demand grows by 2% to 3% as agencies like the IEA predicts over the next 10 to 20 years, and nuclear power keeps it share of the total in the 8% to 10% range, then Hinze expects nuclear power should reach at least 500 GWe by 2040 and as high as 550 GWe.

    That would represent a roughly 40% growth over the current market size, he said.

    There are potential downside risks to nuclear power growth, including competition from fossil fuels and renewables, but since nuclear power is "already not a huge share of the market, it would make sense that its growth can continue regardless of how the other energy fuels fare," Hinze said.

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    Oil Extends Rally as OPEC+ Cuts Set Up Tightest Market in Decade

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

    Oil rallied to a 10-month high as production cuts by leaders of the OPEC+ cartel strain global supplies, a setup that’s projected to create the tightest crude market in a decade in the months ahead.

    Global benchmark Brent climbed above $91 a barrel, and West Texas Intermediate topped $89, both fresh highs for the year. The gains are already showing signs of filtering into fuel markets, with US gasoline prices at the highest seasonal levels in a decade and diesel — the global economy’s workhorse fuel — pushing past $1,000 a ton in Europe.

    Oil markets may experience a shortfall of 3.3 million barrels a day in the fourth quarter, the most constrained market in more than a decade, according to a report Tuesday from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. The US Energy Information Administration will publish its monthly market report later Tuesday, with the International Energy Agency’s outlook due Wednesday.

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    Mexico Bonds Slump as AMLO's Spending Plan Spooks Traders

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

    The government presented a draft 2024 budget late on Friday that boosts support for state oil giant Petroleos Mexicanos and social programs to consolidate Lopez Obrador’s legacy before the presidential election next June. Officials also proposed an $18 billion dollar-debt ceiling in the 2024 budget, triple the $5.5 billion set for this year.  

    The increased spending will result in a fiscal deficit equivalent to 4.9% of gross domestic product — the largest since 1988. It’s a reversal of the president’s penny-pinching ways, which had won him favor with investors in past years as other countries boosted spending to cope with the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. 

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    Incredible markets

    Thanks to a subscriber for this thought-provoking article by Charles Gave. Here is an English translation:

    What are these risks?

    There is one and only one: that the dividends paid by the companies that make up the S&P 500 index do not collapse, as happened from 1929 to 1934.

    And so, for those who think that capitalism is finally going to experience its great final crisis, it is better to have gold.

    But in the event that this dear system of exploitation of man by man were to survive as it has always done throughout history, well, I could live to be two hundred years old without any problem, my capital remaining mine.

    Which is not nothing.

    But the value of my capital can vary very greatly, which I don't care about as only the dividend payments matter to me.

    Today, transforming my gold into shares is almost indifferent to me.

    Let's imagine that in the coming months, the stock market falls by 50%, that gold stays where it is, that the yield therefore increases from 1.7% to 3.4% and that the ratio goes from 1 to 1.5.

    At that point, I can sell half of my gold and buy the equivalent in shares, which allows me to double my annual income.

    If the ratio passes, after a fall in gold from 1 to 0.5, on the other hand, I must sell my shares to buy gold.

    And this is undoubtedly why the ratio has oscillated between 1.5 and 0.5 for a century and a half.

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