La settimana che ci aspetta: Occhi puntati sul rapporto sul mercato del lavoro negli USA

Una settimana impegnativa per i mercati con l’evento principale dei nonfarm payroll statunitensi, oltre a due importanti dichiarazioni della banca centrale.

Partiamo dagli ultimi nonfarm payroll statunitensi.

La lettura di giugno è stata molto al di sopra delle aspettative, e i mercati osserveranno con estrema attenzione gli ultimi dati che verranno pubblicati venerdì.

Sono stati aggiunti 850.000 posti di lavoro nell’economia statunitense in giugno, ben oltre l’aspettativa di 720.000 posti. Si è inoltre trattato del sesto mese consecutivo con un aumento dei posti di lavoro.

Tuttavia, il tasso di disoccupazione è salito dal 5,8% al 5,9%, superando la previsione del 5,6%. La partecipazione della forza lavoro, il metro di riferimento per misurare la carenza di forza lavoro a livello nazionale, non si è spostata ed è rimasta al 61,6%.

Sembra che le nuove assunzioni siano complessivamente diminuite nel corso della primavera. Alcune motivazioni possono spiegare questo fenomeno: le paure legate al virus, i costi per l’assistenza all’infanzia, i più remunerativi assegni di disoccupazione e i pacchetti di stimolo e di pensionamento. Tuttavia, si segnala che le aziende hanno aumentato i salari per invogliare i lavoratori ad accettare nuovi lavori.

Anche il tasso di occupazione è un indicatore importante per il presidente della FED Jerome Powell nel valutare i livelli di stimolo e di supporto per l’economia statunitense.

Sappiamo che Powell e la sua squadra sono relativamente a loro agio nel lasciare che l’economia si surriscaldi, anche di fronte all’aumento dell’inflazione. Come Powell ha sottolineato durante l’ultima riunione della FED, mancano ancora 7,5 milioni di posti di lavoro nell’economia statunitense, anche se alcuni dossier suggeriscono che la cifra sia di 6,8 milioni. Finché queste posizioni aperte non saranno occupate, ci si aspetta più stimolo e supporto da parte della FED.

Per quanto riguarda gli indici, lo S&P 500 e il Nasdaq hanno risposto molto bene all’eccezionale rapporto sulla situazione del mondo del lavoro del mese scorso, raggiungendo nuovi massimi record. Gli operatori azionari sperano più o meno lo stesso per la lettura di luglio.

Restando sui dati relativi agli Stati Uniti, ISM, uno dei principali reporter sugli indici dei responsabili acquisti dell’economia americana, condivide questa settimana le sue prospettive sulla produzione e sui servizi.

La produzione statunitense si è dimostrata solida anche il mese scorso, secondo il rapporto PMI di ISM, ma i problemi della catena di approvvigionamento continuano a rallentare la crescita. I valore del dato relativo alla produzione è stato valutato a 60,6 punti, in calo rispetto al punteggio di 61,2 registrato a maggio.

Lo slancio è ancora vigoroso. Quattro dei cinque sottoindici valutati da ISM hanno mostrato una crescita elevata. L’interesse dei consumatori per i nuovi beni è ancora alto, nonostante l’aumento dei prezzi. Tuttavia, la carenza di manodopera, insieme all’aumento dei prezzi delle materie prime e dei materiali d’acquisto, ha causato colli di bottiglia e carenze proprio mentre i produttori faticano a tenere il passo con la domanda.

“I tempi di consegna lunghissimi per le materie prime, le carenze su vasta scala dei più importanti materiali di base, l’aumento dei prezzi delle materie prime e le difficoltà nel trasporto dei prodotti continuano ad affiggere tutti i segmenti dell’economia manifatturiera”, ha affermato Timothy Fiore, presidente dell’ISM Manufacturing Business Survey Committee.

Lo stesso vale per il settore dei servizi: a giugno c’è stato un aumento, ma questa espansione è stata inferiore rispetto a quella eccezionale di maggio. In questo caso, l’indice è sceso da 63,5 a 60,1.

“Il tasso di espansione del settore dei servizi resta importante, nonostante il leggero calo della crescita rispetto al massimo storico raggiunto il mese scorso”, ha spiegato Anthony Nieves, presidente dell’ISM Services Business Survey Committee. “Le sfide legate alla carenza di materiali, l’inflazione, i problemi alla logistica e le risorse per l’occupazione continuano a essere un ostacolo per le condizioni aziendali”.

Mantenere questo slancio è importante per la salute dell’economia statunitense, soprattutto perché si prevede che gli Stati Uniti saranno la forza trainante della ripresa economica globale per il resto di quest’anno e anche oltre.

Oltre ai dati, la prossima settimana saranno in arrivo un paio di dichiarazioni da parte della banca centrale.

A partire dalla Banca d’Inghilterra, dove il grosso problema è l’aumento dell’inflazione.

A giugno l’inflazione ha raggiunto il 2,5%, a causa al diffuso aumento dei beni di consumo. Potrebbe anche solo trattarsi della domanda, finora repressa nell’economia britannica, che si sta esprimendo in modo libero, ma dal momento che l’inflazione oggi è ai suoi livelli massimi da tre anni a questa parte, i nervi degli economisti sono messi a dura prova.

Il governatore Bailey ha già chiarito la sua posizione: i rialzi dei prezzi sono solo temporanei l’inflazione potrebbe raggiungere il 3% entro fine anno. Successivamente, dovrebbe tornare a livelli accettabili. Attualmente, la Banca d’Inghilterra ha il mandato di indirizzare l’inflazione verso il 2% e mantenerla su quel livello.

Tuttavia, Bailey ha dichiarato che sarebbe pronto a proporre aumenti dei tassi se si dovesse perdere il controllo sull’inflazione.

Questa settimana, anche la Reserve Bank of Australia condivide le sue ultime riflessioni e la sua direzione politica.

Ci sono molte probabilità che non ci siano grandi cambiamenti all’orizzonte. Il governatore Philip Lowe è stato molto chiaro sul fatto che, almeno fino al 2024, non è previsto nessun imminente aumento dei tassi. Questo nonostante i forti fondamentali economici dell’Australia.

Il tasso di cassa minimo storico dello 0,1% resterà invariato. Tuttavia, la cosa interessante è che l’incontro di luglio ha portato ad alcune modifiche al programma di Quantitative Easing australiano. La bilancia è stata tirata indietro. Da settembre in poi, gli acquisti di obbligazioni della Reserve Bank of Australia caleranno da 5 a 4 miliardi di AUD a settimana.

Il governatore Lowe ha gettato le basi per ulteriori modifiche alla politica. Vedremo a cosa porterà l’incontro di questa settimana in termini di eventuali cambiamenti su piccola scala.

Non possiamo completare l’anteprima degli eventi chiave della settimana senza toccare la stagione degli utili negli Stati Uniti.

Lunedì avrà inizio la terza settimana dei rapporti sugli utili del secondo trimestre del 2021 per le aziende a grande capitalizzazione. Non sarà così intensa come la settimana scorsa, ma ci saranno ancora alcuni importanti rapporti in arrivo, tra i quali Alibaba e Uber.

Dai un’occhiata al nostro calendario degli utili negli Stati Uniti per avere altre informazioni sulle aziende più importanti che riferiscono sui propri utili questa settimana, oppure vedi sotto.

I principali dati economici

Date Time (GMT+1) Asset Event
Mon 2-Aug 8.55am EUR German Final Manufacturing PMI
  3.00pm USD US ISM Manufacturing PMI
 
Tue 3-Aug 5.30am AUD RBA Rate Statement
  5.30am AUD Cash Statement
  11.45pm NZD Employment Change q/q
  11.45pm NZD Unemployment Rate
 
Wed 4-Aug 2.30am AUD Retail Sales m/m
  1.15pm USD ADP Nonfarm Employment Change
  3.00pm USD US ISM Services PMI
  3.30pm OIL US Crude Oil Inventories
 
Thu 5-Aug 12.00pm GBP Asset Purchase Facility
  12.00pm GBP BOE Monetary Policy Report
  12.00pm GBP MPC Asset Purchase Facility Votes
  12.00pm GBP Monetary Policy Summary
  12.00pm GBP MPC Official Bank Rate Votes
  12.00pm GBP Official Bank Rate
  3.30pm GAS US Natural Gas Inventories
 
Fri 6-Aug 2.30am AUD RBA Monetary Policy Statement
  1.30pm CAD Employment Change
  1.30pm CAD Unemployment Rate
  1.30pm USD Average Hourly Earnings q/q
  1.30pm USD Nonfarm Employment Change
  1.30pm USD Unemployment Rate

 

I principali rapporti sugli utili

Mon 2 Aug Tue 3 Aug Wed 4 Aug Thu 5 Aug
Arista Networks Alibaba General Motors Ball Corp
Activision Blizzard The Kraft Heinz Co Beyond Meat
Roku Inc Illumina
Uber Technologies Square Inc
The Trade Desk
Virgin Galactic Holdings

Earnings season: Another record-breaking quarter for Apple

Apple smashes yet another quarterly earnings season – but the stock price takes a hit.

Apple earnings

Apple’s headline stats

Apple beats Wall Street expectations once again. This was its strongest June quarter report on record, with sales of all major Apple product lines up 12% across the board.

Overall revenues were up 36% year-on-year for a total of $81.41 billion. When broken into key categories, Apple’s latest quarterly revenues look something like this:

  • Total Revenue – $81.41 billion – 36% y-o-y growth
  • iPhone revenue – $39.57 billion – 49.78% y-o-y growth
  • Services revenue – $17.48 billion – 33% y-o-y growth
  • Other Products revenue – $8.76 billion – 40% y-o-y growth
  • Mac revenue – $8.24 billion – 16% y-o-y growth
  • iPad revenue – $7.37 billion – 12% y-o-y growth
  • Gross margin – 43.3% y-o-y growth

It’s of course iPhones that represent the largest chunk of Apple’s quarterly revenues. The California brand launched its latest iteration in October last year. Since then, it’s place as the centrepiece in the Apple crown has gone undisputed.

As we can see from the above, other Apple products, including Macs and iPads, also remain extremely popular with consumers.

“Our record June quarter operating performance included new revenue records in each of our geographic segments, double-digit growth in each of our product categories, and a new all-time high for our installed base of active devices,” said Luca Maestri, Apple’s CFO, in a statement released on Tuesday.

“We generated $21 billion of operating cash flow, returned nearly $29 billion to our shareholders during the quarter, and continued to make significant investments across our business to support our long-term growth plans.”

In terms of guidance, Maestri said the company is forecasting double-digit year-on-year growth into the next quarter, although this is expected to slow in September.

Apple stock still takes a knock

Despite these huge gains, Apple shares reacted poorly to Maestri’s September forecasts. The stock fell 2% after the announcement and is currently trading down roughly 0.7%.

This comes even after earnings per share rose from the estimated $1.01 to $1.30.

So, why the dip? It’s the same thing that affected Tesla this year, and indeed most tech companies involved in physical hardware: supply side issues.

There is currently a global chip shortage. A shortage of silicon used to manufacturer chipsets necessary for building Apple products has caused supply and manufacturing issues. The most affect products were Macs and iPads, which use “legacy nodes”, i.e., older chip models, unlike the iPhone which runs on more current chipsets.

“We had predicted the shortages to total $3 to $4 billion,” Apple CEO Tim Cook told CNBC. “But we were actually able to mitigate some of that, and we came in at the lower than the low end part of that range.”

The drop in Apple share price may then have been caused by consternation around the coming quarters’ performance until the end of 2021. Will supply shortages stymie growth? Likely so, but Apple has proven it can mitigate these and still come out on top. However, it’s how much growth slows across the rest of the year, if it does, that may have caused concern for investors.

Apple analyst sentiment

Even with stock down, sentiment appears to be fairly strong. According to the Analyst consensus tool on the Marketsx platform, Apple holds a buy rating according to 25 market observers’ opinions:

Analyst consensus for Apple on 28.07.2021.

Sentiment is also veering towards the bullish:

Apple news sentiment for 28.07.2021.

So, another massive quarter for the world’s foremost tech brand. Now, it’s up to Cook, Maestri and the rest of the team to navigate Apple through a world where commodities and raw materials are in short supply. Can it deliver? Watch this space.

To see which large caps are still due to report on Wall Street this season, make sure you check out our earnings calendar.

What do analysts say are the best investment bank stocks?

Banks have enjoyed a rollicking recovery since the depths of the pandemic in March 2020. The XLF financials ETF has more than doubled since it struck a multi-year low over a year ago. A strong monetary and fiscal response from governments and central banks and a strong trading performance sparked the first phase of the recovery, whilst powerful economic growth and rising bond yields has helped the sector continue to gain.  

 

But among the major financial stocks, there are some top picks in the investment banking arena from JPMorgan that are worth a look. “The Investment Banking (IB) industry, in our view, is in a much better shape today compared to where it has ever been,” analysts from the bank said in a note. IBs operate a lower risk model as they become less capital-intensive,  revenue streams are more sustainable, barriers to entry remain high and they have an increasing share of so-called ‘captive’ wealth management. 

 

Here are JPM’s top investment bank picks and what other analysts say

 

In the global investment banking space, Goldman Sachs takes the top spot. “We see GS as a contender given its agile culture, which allows it to move as a Fintech, and its strong IT platform to retain its strong market share growth momentum from Tier II players,” the JPM team says.

Goldman also gets a buy rating on our Analyst Recommendations tool.

Goldman Sachs investment analysis rating.

In Europe, Barclays is the number one pick, with the analysts describing the UK-listed stock as “a relative winner with its transaction bank providing an advantage along with its diversified IB revenue mix”. UBS comes in second and Deutsche Bank also gets a nod. The German bank also received an upgrade from Kepler Capital.

Barclays investment analysis.

Cryptocurrency update: Bitcoin breaks $61,000, Tesla & BTC, and NFTs, NFTs, NFTs

Another week, another BTC high, which looks like good news for Elon Musk and Tesla. Elsewhere, NFT fever sweeps across cryptos, but will that affect prices?

Cryptocurrency update

Bitcoin new record high

Bitcoin spiked on Saturday 13th March, crossing the $60,000 barrier for the first time, and reaching above $61,500 before pulling back.

At the time of writing, Bitcoin futures were trading back around $55,000.

So, what was behind this fresh Bitcoin rocket ride? It’s our old friend institutional support. Chinese software firm Meitu is the latest in a long line of companies snapping up digital tokens for their treasuries and putting support on BTC prices.

Meitu has picked up $17.9m in Bitcoin but also bought $22m of Ether in the same transaction, which is fairly interesting – most probably because Ether is cheaper per-unit than Bitcoin, but still has a lot of institutional interest.

JPMorgan has also stated it’s launching a structured investment product featuring indirect exposure to cryptocurrency markets for its clients by the end of March. The investment bank’s structured debt product will maintain stock holdings in companies that have their own exposure to BTC. Retail and institutional investors would then have the opportunity to buy into the debt issuance with a minimum investment of $1,000 without direct BTC exposure.

There’s a long, long list of supporters of BTC has it continues to shift from outsider alternative currency to mainstream token. JPMorgan and Meitu are the latest names to join it, while Deutsche Bank and others have been there for a couple of months now.

Another factor that could be playing into a new BTC rally is Joe Biden’s mega stimulus package. $1.9 trillion in extra stimulus is coming to the US economy with $1,400 going to US citizens. Could some of that be pumped into retail cryptocurrency investment?

At its highest, Bitcoin’s market cap reached $1.14 trillion – more than the entire GDP of Indonesia or Mexico. Volatility is the fundamental characteristic of Bitcoin, however. After its most recent rally, when it smashed through the $50,000 barrier, BTC retracted down to $33,000 before rising again. It’s a heady rollercoaster ride, but one that encourages shorting. Some sort of stability would be nice.

While institutions are jumping aboard the Bitcoin/crypto train, regulatory reform is in the break car, desperately trying to put a slowdown on the market before investors go off the tracks. India, for instance, is proposing a strict cryptocurrency ban, wanting to prohibit “possession, issuance, mining, trading and transferring crypto-assets”, according to Reuters.

This regulatory tug of war will be ongoing, but it doesn’t really seem like it’s going to slow BTC volatility in the short-term.

Tesla makes big BTC profit

The shadow of Elon Musk looms large over the cryptocurrency world. The man with the itchy Twitter finger’s influence on price movements and crypto legitimacy has been seemingly all pervasive in recent months. When news came his carmaker Tesla had sunk $1.5bn in BTC in its last financial update at the start of February, it caused a stir. Is that a smart move for a EV manufacturer to be exploring? Apparently so.

With BTC breaking over $61,000, Tesla’s move to fill its coffers with digital coinage looked like a good one.  At that high, Tesla was up $1.2bn on its BTC trade.

Companies storing spare cash in securities like Treasury bills is nothing new. But Treasury bills are usually nowhere near as volatile as cryptocurrencies. It’s hard to argue with the results, but there are some lingering questions.

The $1.2bn crypto profit is more than Tesla has made from selling cars across the last decade, nominally the core mission of Tesla as a company. Of course, launching a new car marque into a congest marketplace takes massive overheads. You’ve got spend money to make money (and cars), but the ratio of investment to profit from digital tokens Tesla just showed versus its central business function is an interesting one.

Will Tesla move more of its capital into digital currencies? How will this affect its core business? What will the market think?

Tesla’s shares dropped by 20% after its BTC play was revealed, falling from $863 per share to around $694 at current levels, suggesting it doesn’t think too kindly on Tesla doing this. Musk has essentially tied Tesla and BTC together at the hip with such a move, which may have caused investors to question Tesla’s ongoing growth strategy.

In the short-term, it has paid off, but is it really sustainable for Tesla to pour money into BTC – especially with rivals like Lucid Motors gaining traction, and legacy car manufacturers making in roads into the EV segment. It’s one to watch for the future.

Could NFT upswing lead to higher crypto prices?

NFTs are getting more headlines recently, following a $69m purchase of a digital graphic from Designer Mike Winkleman, aka Beeple, by the pseudonymous founder of NFT-fund MetaPurse MetaKovan.

An NFT is a non-fungible token, a not-so-sexy name for assets sold on blockchains. This includes artwork, music, digital collectibles, virtual items for video games like weapons or skins, and even tokenised real-world assets like designer trainers, cars and property.

Everyone is getting in the act with Kings of Leon releasing their latest album via NFTs and Elon Musk’s (who else?) Wife Grimes selling $6m worth of artworks on blockchains via NFTs.

Non-fungible tokens are bought with cryptocurrency. For instance, MetaKovan picked up Beeple’s “Everdays” with $69m worth of ETH.

NFTs are valuable because they prove an artwork’s scarcity. “Everdays” is a one-off, thus its value was huge – although that is partly tied into a broader discussion on the value of art, which we won’t dive into here.

Depending on the type of NFT sold, the purchaser would become the sole owner. So, using “Everdays” as an example, MetaKovan is that artwork’s sole owner.

In the case of the Kings of Leon release, buying it as an NFT would mean you own a digital copy of the album, like you would if you were to buy it off iTunes or pick up a physical copy.

GameStop Reddit redux, vaccines & Powell deliver hope as equities shrug off higher yields

Who doesn’t like a McFlurry? McDonald’s ice cream may seem like an unlikely trigger for a fresh bout of frenzied retail trading, but there’s still something odd going on with GameStop shares. And it has something to do with ice cream. Shares in the company doubled yesterday – not so amazing you might think given the recent volatility, but the pop came entirely in the final hour and a half of trading amid heavy volume. Trading in GME was halted twice and the move spread to other names that were part of the recent Reddit frenzy. AMC Entertainment rose 18% on exceptionally high volumes. GME shares rose another 83% in after-hours trade to $168, having started the session at $44.70.

Figuring out why all this occurred late in yesterday’s US session is harder to explain than the short squeeze of January. Heavy buying of bullish call options may have exaggerated the move, but didn’t cause it. The CFO’s departure – which is part of the shake-up that investors are hoping for – was known before the opening bell, so shares would have responded before 7pm GMT. It could, though, be related to a tweet from activist investor Ryan Cohen, who posted a picture of a McDonald’s ice cream just before 7pm, a couple of hours before the US cash equity close. Does it signal Cohen, the founder of Chewy.com and leading investor in GameStop, will fix the company the way McDonald’s finally fixed its ice cream machines? (For those who have never set foot in a McDonald’s, the ice cream machines are broken so frequently it has become a meme on Twitter.) Or could it be even more cryptic and related to a new website that tells you in real time whether your local McDonald’s has a functioning ice cream machine?  Who knows, stranger things have happened. It looks like the Reddit crowd are at it again.

 

GameStop shares have doubled again.

 

Yields continued to advance, with US 10 year Treasuries north of 1.4% at a fresh year high, whilst Japanese bond yields rose to their highest in over two years. This failed to worry the market, however, as Fed chair Jay Powell administered more soothing words on inflation. The Dow Jones rallied 1.35% to a record high, briefly touching on 32,000 and closing within 40pts of this marker. The S&P 500 rose over 1%, the Nasdaq recovered 1% and the Russell 2000 of small caps rose by more than 2.3%. European stocks rose tamely in early trade on Thursday. Gains for the FTSE 100 were capped by 13.4pts inn ex-divis but it nevertheless pushed on to almost 6,700. Gold retreated under $1,800, whilst Bitcoin was steady at $50k.

Vaccine progress is underpinning strength in cyclical names, with the Johnson & Johnson covid jab set to get the green light in the US after the FDA staff report said there are no safety concerns with the single-dose vaccine. Energy and Financials are at the top of the Stoxx 600 in Europe this morning. Bond proxies, tech and growth all remain more problematic as yields go higher.

Charlie Munger, long-time friend and partner of Warren Buffett at Berkshire Hathaway has lashed out at Bitcoin, Tesla, Robinhood and SPACs. Sounds like my kind of guy. Asked whether he thought Bitcoin at $50k or Tesla being valued at $1tn was the crazier, he said: “Well I have the same difficulty that Samuel Johnson once had when he got a similar question, he said, ‘I can’t decide the order of precedency between a flea and a louse,’ and I feel the same way about those choices. I don’t know which is worse.” There were some other great nuggets such as: “Bitcoin reminds me of what Oscar Wilde said about fox hunting. He said it was the pursuit of the uneatable by the unspeakable.” To which Bitcoin HODLers would no doubt respond by saying ‘have fun being poor’. Still Munger doesn’t invest in gold, so why would he invest in Bitcoin, since it is clearly not a currency? He also warned about blank cheque special purpose acquisition companies – or SPACs – saying they represent “crazy speculation in enterprises not even found or picked out yet” which is “a sign of an irritating bubble”.

Elsewhere, oil prices rose to their highest in over a year despite a surprise build in US crude inventories as the freezing weather in Texas shut refineries. Stockpiles increased by 1.3m barrels, vs expectations for a draw of more than 5m barrels. Stocks at Cushing, Oklahoma, rose for the first time in six weeks as refiners couldn’t take delivery. Bulls were buoyed, however, as US weekly crude output fell by 1.1m bpd, equally the biggest drop on record. The big freeze in Texas has really thrown the weekly numbers out of whack, but it’s clear demand is picking up. Everyone is now looking at the OPEC meeting next week on March 4th and an expected easing of self-imposed supply constraints.

In FX, sterling is trying to mount a fresh challenge at $1.42 after yesterday’s reversal. This looks more like a pause on the way to the $1.45 area for GBPUSD. Turning to Bank of America comments on sterling, which says the “backdrop could not be more conducive to further GBP gains as UK steadily re-emerges from lockdown and vax rollout remains exemplary. BoE discussion on neg rates is likely to be delayed into Q3, whilst GBP should benefit from structural seasonality in April”. That sounds bullish.

How to buy, sell and short GameStop shares

Investing or trading on GameStop shares has become one of the hottest topics of 2021 as a gang of Reddit users has shaken global stock markets. 

Buying, selling and shorting GameStop shares 

Why is GameStop rising so sharply? 

Investors/traders operating out of the /r/Wallstreetbets subreddit forum have set their sights on a variety of companies previously underperforming with GameStop being a favourite. The stock has seen meteoric gains in recent trading as a result, even hitting over $500 per share. 

It’s been controversial to say the least. Prior to interest from millennial investors, GameStop had been a company in decline. Its business model is firmly rooted in physical video game media, i.e. the buying and selling of pre-owned and new games. The video game industry has shifted to digital in a big way, so physical retailers like GameStop have been hurt. 

GameStop shares fell 80% in value between January 2016 and July 2020 from these changing market conditions. Yet the stock has become a huge favourite for millennial investors, resulting in a massive 3000% price rise from July 2020 to January 2021. This has added billions to GameStop’s market cap – but the activity is now being monitored by financial regulation authorities around the go. 

How to buy & trade GameStop shares 

GameStop shares are available to buy or trade with Markets.com. 

If you are looking to buy shares, and become an investor, you will need a Marketsi account. You can take full ownership of GameStop shares by buying them via our Share Dealing platform*. You can potentially profit if the price increase above the price you initially bought any GameStop shares, but you could lose your investment if it were to collapse. 

How to invest 

  • Create or log into your Marketsaccount 
  • Open the Share Dealing platform 
  • Search “GameStop” in the top right search bar 
  • Select the number of shares you wish to buy
  • Confirm your purchase and monitor your position 

If you want to trade GameStop shares, then you can do so with a Marketsaccount. Marketsx is our award-winning trading platform, where you can speculate on GameStop price movements via CFDs or spread bets without owning the shares themselves. 

This is also the only way to go short we currently offer. With a CFD or with spread betting, you may open a short position if you think GameStop share prices will drop. These are leveraged products, which have the potential to increase your profits, but also increase your losses too. 

How to trade 

  • Create or log into your Marketsaccount 
  • Open the Marketsplatform 
  • Search “GameStop” in the top left search bar 
  • Select how many CFDs you wish to trade  
  • Select whether you want to go long or short 
  • Confirm your purchase and monitor your position 

All trading is risky and contains a risk of capital loss. Only trade if you can afford the losses.  

*Only available in certain jurisdictions

Can Netflix shares rebound on earnings update?

Netflix (NFLX) reports on Jan 19th, with average earnings per shares (EPS) estimated at $1.40 on revenues of $6.6bn, up 20% year-on-year.

Whilst the company has been a big winner from the pandemic as subscriptions leapt with consumers stuck at home, there are worries about the service going forward.

One, is it as good as it used to be? The library content is shrinking and competition is far more intense these days. Churn is a big concern with one survey showing 32% of respondents indicating they are likely to cancel Netflix in the next three months. This is well up on previous levels and indicates perhaps a degree of subscription fatigue among consumers. Whilst Netflix remains first among equals (people with more than one VOD subscriptions almost invariably have a Netflix account), it’s facing much sterner competition from the likes of Disney, which is throwing some serious effort into new content and has the advantage of established brands and intellectual property like Star Wars.

Two, we’re heading into the other side of the massive pull-forward in demand that really drove the 2020 subscriber growth. Paid net adds hit 26m in the first half but had declined to just 2.2m in Q3. Netflix ended Q3 with 195m paid subscribers and expects a further 6m net adds in Q4 to reach 201m in total. Key will be the subscriber growth in Latin America and Asia Pacific, where growing broadband penetration rates are supportive of ongoing growth. Whilst Netflix has had some notable local-language successes, it will need to keep repeating these to keep growing – content remains king.

Netflix pay adds year to date.

Netflix Sentiment Analysis

Netflix sentiment

Stock price analysis

The price action has been very range-bound since July amid ongoing uncertainty about whether Netflix can kick on and build on its pandemic growth, or whether growth rates will never be the same again. Hugging the 50-day SMA at present and looking for breakouts either side of $560 and $470 to be chased.

Netflix price movements

What are the top Nasdaq stocks of 2020?

November saw a spectacular rally in global equity markets on hopes vaccines will see a return to normality next year. The big theme of the month was the rotation from Growth to Value, with the Russell 2000 small cap index notching its best ever month. The FTSE 100 enjoyed its best month in 31 years and Europe’s Stoxx 600 rose the most in a single month since records began in 1986.

But it’s just worth a little reminder that as far as year-to-date gains go, it’s a story of tech and growth over value, energy and financials. The Nasdaq 100 is up 40% YTD, whilst the FTSE 100 is down 15%.

Here are the top stocks of 2020 on the Nasdaq 100.

YTD
NDX 40.48
  Moderna Inc 680.88
  Zoom Video Communications Inc 603.06
  Tesla Inc 578.41
  Pinduoduo Inc 267.03
  DocuSign Inc 207.49
  Mercadolibre Inc 171.59
  JD.Com Inc 142.27
  NVIDIA Corp 127.82
  Advanced Micro Devices Inc 102.05
  PayPal Holdings Inc 97.95
  IDEXX Laboratories Inc 76.53
  Align Technology Inc 72.48
  Amazon.com Inc 71.45
  T-Mobile US Inc 69.52
  Cadence Design Systems Inc 67.68
  Qualcomm Inc 66.8
  Synopsys Inc 63.43
  Apple Inc 62.17
  Lululemon Athletica Inc 59.8
  Lam Research Corp 54.81
  Autodesk Inc 52.75
  Netflix Inc 51.65
  Seagen Inc 49.05
  Xilinx Inc 48.87
  ASML Holding NV 47.91
  Take-Two Interactive Software Inc 47.44
  NetEase Inc 47.36
  DexCom Inc 46.15
  Adobe Inc 45.07
  KLA Corp 41.42
  eBay Inc 39.66
  Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc 37.43
  Workday Inc 36.69
  Splunk Inc 36.33
  Microsoft Corp 35.75
  Applied Materials Inc 35.12
  Maxim Integrated Products Inc 35
  Facebook Inc 34.94
  Charter Communications Inc 34.41
  Intuit Inc 34.39
  Fastenal Co 33.83
  Activision Blizzard Inc 33.76
  Monster Beverage Corp 33.41
  Costco Wholesale Corp 33.29

Source: Reuters Eikon, Dec 1st 2020

Pfizer, Biontech vaccine news spurs gains

Stock markets surged on some extremely positive news from Pfizer and Biontech, who say their vaccine is 90% effective in phase 3 clinical trials.

From tracking just under 6,000 all morning the FTSE 100 rallied over 100 points on the news, whilst e-minis went up 70 points or so.

The Dow is now seen up 1,300 points – coming on top of the wave of relief from Joe Biden’s victory it’s proving a spicy cocktail for stocks.

I won’t lay with lots of comment about the trials as I am no vaccine expert, all I can say is this is a good news day. Whilst we are not there yet, news that this vaccine could be highly effective is the best thing markets could hope for.

Public health officials will remind us there is a long road ahead, and many challenges will be faced along the way, but there is an enormous sense of optimism today – light at the end of the tunnel. Let’s just hope the vaccine deniers won’t get in the way, but 2021 just got a lot brighter.

E-mini futures – spot when the vaccine news broke

US Futures performance on Pfizer announcement.

European stocks rally; all the usual narratives

Vaccine hopes, stimulus rumours Brexit risks, earnings optimism– choose your narrative and apply it accordingly. The truth is the major indices are not really going anywhere right now.

Treasury yields have barely budged with 10s holding 0.77%, gold is holding a little above $1,900 and the dollar index sits in the middle of the 93.30-93.90 range.

WTI (Dec) trades above $41 ahead of today’s OPEC JMMC meeting which will discuss compliance with cuts. A full meeting at the end of Nov could see OPEC+ put on hold plans to scale back production cuts to 5.8m b/d from the current 7.7m.

European shares rose strongly at the open as investors put an unsatisfactory week behind them and indices continue to run over very well-trodden turf. The FTSE 100 pushed above 5950 as the bounce from last week’s test of the 5780 support zone held.

Wall Street was mixed, with the Dow up 0.4% and the Nasdaq down the same. The S&P 500 split the difference to be flat on the day, arresting three days of losses and finish back where it was the previous weekend. Futures indicate a higher open for US markets.

Rising case numbers across Europe is raising the risk of a second recessionary wave, but ample central bank support means we are holding the Sep-Oct range.

Meanwhile, in the US, House Democrat leader Nancy Pelosi said she is ‘optimistic’ about getting a pre-election stimulus deal agreed. Lots of chatter around this dictating some of the price action but not a lot of substance – what we do know is that some kind of stimulus package is on its way.

What we don’t know is whether the market is really reflecting this just yet. News on Friday that Pfizer will apply for emergency approval for its Covid-19 vaccine candidate is also underscoring a more positive view for equities this morning.

Rebounding growth in China helped lift sentiment a bit after the initial headline miss and gave bulls the excuse to drive up European stocks.

China GDP up 4.9%, which was a little short of the 5.2% expected but still shows solid recovery. Industrial production was up 6.9%.

Meanwhile, Japanese exports fell 4.9% year-on-year in September, vs –2.4% expected. But this was much better than the double-digit declines registered in each of the last six months.

Data on Friday showed US retail sales rose sharply in September with spending above the pre-pandemic level, but there are fears the lack of stimulus will start to bite.

A University of Chicago survey showed that pandemic relief funds worth $600 a week in additional jobless benefits boosted the savings of unemployed Americans, but the bulk of this had run out by the end of August.

Both the UK and EU are trying to revive faltering Brexit talks by saying the other needs to change approach. Michael Gove said on Sunday the door was ‘ajar’ for discussions should the EU be prepared to compromise.

GBPUSD rose at the start of the session to 1.29750 and approach near term resistance around 1.30. We saw last week how headlines and announcements can create significant volatility in sterling crosses but there is no real direction to GBP right now as traders wait for a clearer steer from the trade talks. Right now a skinny deal looks most likely.

Election Watch – 15 days to go

Early voting in the key state of Wisconsin starts Tuesday. Trump has to win this one to stand a chance. Biden’s national lead fell to 8.9pts, whilst in the battlegrounds Trump trails by 4.3pts, which is narrower than it has been for some time.

At this stage in 2016 Trump was 5pts behind in the top battlegrounds but still pulled off a surprise election night win. Fears of a contested election result have receded. Our friends at BlondeMoney crunched the numbers to forecast the outcome of the most important battles in the Senate race. (spoiler: it’s called 51/49 for the Democrats, in line with current polling)

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