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1:00 p.m. ET: ‘Turkey Wednesday’ is the ‘Black Friday’ for grocery shopping
Is there a ‘Black Friday’ for buying Turkeys? Placer.ai, an analytics outfit that tracks store traffic, thinks maybe there is. The firm noted recently that grocers see a big traffic boost the day before Thanksgiving as consumers scramble for last-minute dinner fixings:
Noting that “there may not be a bigger day for grocers than the Wednesday before Thanksgiving,” Placer.ai found:
For Publix, Wednesday before Thanksgiving marked the highest day for visits nationwide in 2017 and 2018, soaring by nearly 90% above the baseline and besting every other day during the period.
Safeway saw visits rise 78.4% and 75.8% above the baseline for the same period beating out every other day.
Albertsons spiked 102.2% above in 2017 and 96.6% above in 2018, while Amazon-owned Whole Foods and Giant visits also saw their peaks on this glorious day for groceries.
12:30 p.m. ET: How ‘Tim Apple’ manages Trump amid the trade war
Last week, an uproar ensued after President Donald Trump stated (erroneously) that Apple had decided to move some production to the U.S. While the claim was wrong, Apple watchers noted how Tim Cook — who the president once mistakenly called “Tim Apple” — has managed to navigate the U.S.-China trade spat by wringing tariff concessions out of Trump.
Well, according to data from research firm Panjiva, the Trump administration has granted 62.5% of Apple’s requests for tariff exemption on the largest set of tariffed products, known as “List 3.” That’s a far cry from the exemption rate for non-Apple companies of 5.9%. The figures suggest Apple is far more likely to get what it wants from a notoriously impulsive president.
The full story is here.
12:00 p.m. ET: What’s worse than a divided government? A ‘united’ one
With virtually all of Wall Street fretting election year risk, Goldman Sachs’ David Kostin predicted that S&P 500 companies will see lower earnings next year. His doomsday scenario involves a unified government dominated by one party:
“A unified federal government post-election could prompt investors to assume the tax cut is reversed and lower projected 2021 EPS to $162 (-7% year/year growth), compressing the P/E multiple to 16x consistent with an index level of 2,600,” Kostin wrote.
The idea that government gridlock is actually good for investors has long underpinned Wall Street’s assumptions. With President Donald Trump under rising political pressure, markets are starting to war-game scenarios about what would happen if Democrats recapture both chambers of Congress and the White House.
11:05 a.m. ET: UBS: 2020 all about politics, then ‘transformation’
The Swiss Banking giant expects global growth to edge down to 3.0% in 2020, from 3.1% this year, as the crosswinds of trade, politics and weaker business confidence drags on the world economy.
According to UBS’s chief investment officer Mark Haefele, politics is the dominant theme next year. However, he names some ways investors can “reassert control over their portfolios” independent of outcomes:
• Within equities, we recommend quality and dividends, and choosing
domestic and consumer-focused companies that are likely to provide
more reliable returns than those exposed to trade and business spending.
• In fixed income, we suggest a middle-of-the-road approach given low
yields on the safest debt and the rising credit risks among some high yield
issuers. We favor emerging market sovereign debt, select “crossover”
names in Europe, and sustainable over traditional bonds.
• Elsewhere, we like precious metals over cyclical commodities, expect
US dollar underperformance, and advocate a low beta posture within
Meanwhile, a “decade of transformation” will bring big changes:
“Working-age populations in developed countries will begin to shrink, and a less favorable
political backdrop could emerge for higher-income individuals. We also
expect significant environmentally and technologically led innovations to
disrupt existing norms in a deglobalizing world.
“Overall, we think all this will mean lower returns and higher volatility for
most financial assets than in the past decade. Investors targeting a given
level of return in well-diversified portfolios may therefore need to increase
their allocation to riskier assets such as equities.”
10:45 a.m. ET: Teva spikes on report of price-fixing settlement
Citing anonymous sources, Bloomberg reports that Teva and a few other generic drugmakers are in talks with the Justice Department to clear up a criminal antitrust probe that accuses them of price-fixing. Under the terms of the agreement, the companies would admit to certain allegations, pay fines and cooperate with officials — but will not be indicted. Teva’s (TEVA) stock is up over 6% in mid-morning trade.
10:02 a.m. ET: Stocks set new records in Thanksgiving week rally
Merger mania is sending the major benchmarks higher, with the S&P 500 Index and Nasdaq both setting new 2019 highs. U.S.-China trade talks also underpin sentiment.
10:00 a.m. ET: EBay rallies on deal to sell StubHub
The online auction site’s stock (EBAY) jumped by over 1% in early trading, after it announced a deal to sell StubHub for $4 billion, one of 3 big deals announced early Monday that boosted stocks to new highs. The sale is expected to close by early 2020.
9:30 a.m. ET: Stocks gain as big deals boost sentiment
Wall Street opened to the upside on Monday, as major deal news converged with a policy move by China that investors interpreted as encouraging to U.S.-China trade talks. The week is shortened by Thanksgiving, so flows are likely to be light.
Here’s where the markets began trading:
S&P 500 (^GSPC): +0.35%, or 10.95 points
Dow (^DJI): +0.28%, or 79.11 points
Nasdaq (^IXIC): +0.64%, or 56.19 points
10-year Treasury yield (^TNX): -0.5 at 1.765%
Gold (GC=F): -0.5% to $1,456.10 per ounce
LVMH buying Tiffany & Co. (TIF) for $16 billion and Charles Schwab (SCHW) buying TD Ameritrade (AMTD) for $26 billion helped set the stage for the session. Meanwhile, China tightening its intellectual property laws — partly addressing a major U.S. concern — was also seen as constructive.
According to veteran market watcher Peter Boockvar:
“I still though think it’s important from a market perspective to compare what this phase one deal will end up looking like (I think we’ll get one) vs the one that was almost inked in May. The one in May was certainly the most comprehensive in all respects and the most stringent in terms of IP protection where the Chinese were actually going to embed it in law. Phase one will likely be a fraction of it, some saying about 60-65% in terms of content with the balance hoped for to be included in phase two which who knows if we’ll get next year.”