|Wednesday 19th of September 2018
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Normal Board - The Whole shebang
Prompt Board Next day settlement
Expert Board All you need re an Individual stock.
The Latest Daily PodCast can be found here on the Front Page of the site
12-SEP-2016 :: Mirrors on the ceiling, The pink champagne on ice
If volatility spikes, positions are going to be reduced en masse. Or
to put it another way and to borrow the lyrics from the Eagles Hotel
Mirrors on the ceiling,
The pink champagne on ice
And she said “We are all just prisoners here, of our own device” Last
thing I remember, I was
Running for the door
I had to find the passage back
To the place I was before
“Relax,” said the night man,
“We are programmed to receive.
You can check-out any time you like,
But you can never leave! “
What is clear is that we are at the fag-end of this party.
17-SEP-2018 :: The Worry is what happens if it metasizes even further? The Dollar is seriously weaponised. The US economy is blowing hot
Since the beginning of 2018 the US has been reducing its balance
sheet, reducing the amount of Dollars and also increasing the interest
rate on those Dollars. The Dollar which had appeared like a Toy Gun
has suddenly metasized into an AK47. The Worry is what happens if it
metasizes even further? The Dollar is seriously weaponised. The US
economy is blowing hot. The risk is that US interest rates will go
higher than the market is currently predicting. Punch-drunk markets
need to sober up fast. Hyperbolic and populist responses are inversely
correlated to the state of the real economy, note Nicholas Maduro's
Venezuela and President Erdogan.
With a Submarine, Japan Sends a Message in the South China Sea @nytimes
Law & Politics
A Japanese submarine participated in war games in the South China Sea
last week and is now visiting Vietnam, signaling a more assertive
pushback by Japan against China’s territorial claims in the region.
Japan took the unusual step on Monday of announcing that it had
carried out the drills, which also involved two destroyers and a
helicopter carrier. The Ministry of Defense said the exercises were
not targeting a particular nation, but analysts said they were an
unequivocal message to China.
“We are sending a signal that China cannot just do whatever it wants
to do and get away with it,” said Narushige Michishita, director of
the Security and International Studies Program at the National
Graduate Institute for Policy Studies in Tokyo.
The drills were the first involving a submarine that Japan is known to
have conducted in the South China Sea. Neither the Defense Ministry
nor the Asahi Shimbun newspaper, which broke the news before the
announcement, said where in the sea they had been carried out.
“I think it’s a very good example of the complexities in the
relationship right now,” said Kristi Govella, assistant professor of
Asian studies at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. “Japan and China
are interdependent and do have a lot to gain from each other, but at
the same time there are some real issues and tensions.”
“In the past, Japan regarded other countries as either a friend or an
enemy,” Toshiyuki Ito, a retired vice admiral and now a professor of
crisis management and international relations at Kanazawa Institute of
Technology. “But that’s not reality. Japan has finally matured,
shaking hands with its right hand while holding up a fist with its
left. That was unthinkable 20 years ago.”
Both Britain and France have sent warships through the South China Sea
in recent months, reflecting an international effort to contain
China’s ambitions, particularly on the part of American allies.
Beijing said it would retaliate with tariffs against $60 billion worth of American products
Beijing said it would retaliate with tariffs against $60 billion worth
of American products after Trump on Monday imposed 10 percent tariffs
on about $200 billion worth of imports from China
In July, Beijing launched a short video in English featuring a talking
cartoon soybean vouching for the importance of trade. The cartoon
points out that nine out of the top 10 soybean growing states voted
for Trump in the 2016 presidential election.
“So will voters there turn out to support Trump and the Republicans
once they get hit in the pocketbooks?” asks the bean.
09-JUL-2018 :: Tariff wars, who blinks first?
James Dean was an iconic American actor, who tapped into the universal
yearning and angst of nearly every adolescent human being with a raw
connection that has surely not been surpassed since. In one of his
most consequential films, Rebel without a Cause, two players (read,
teenage boys) decide to settle a dispute (read, teenage girl) by way
of near-death experiences. Each speeds an automobile towards a cliff.
A simple rule governs the challenge: the first to jump out of his
automo- bile is the chicken and, by universally accepted social
convention, concedes the object in dispute. The second to jump is
victorious, and, depending on context, becomes gang leader, prom king,
17-SEP-2018 :: Bubbles are bursting just about everywhere.
Now let me return to the Eurobond Markets where Africa issued $81b
worth of bonds over the last six years. These markets trade
continuously. Essentially these markets are a continuous score-card on
the creditworthiness of the Issuer. its a relatively recent phenomenon
and something many Policy-Makers will not have considered adequately.
Balance sheets are maxed out.
NEW INVESTIGATION: #Maldives tourism isn't all swaying palm trees and white sand beaches. The truth is something far uglier. #ParadiseLeased @OCCRP
Thanks to a trove of leaked files, OCCRP reporters have uncovered the
details of an audacious multi-million dollar scheme that saw dozens of
Maldivian islands leased out to developers in no-bid deals — and the
money then stolen. While local tycoons and international investors
cashed in, the people of this island paradise in the Indian Ocean saw
They called themselves “the untouchables,” and they committed their
crimes in the clearest of tropical daylight, behind the fist of an
In just 18 months, a coterie of senior officials in the Maldives, with
help from President Abdulla Yameen, leased scores of the country’s
idyllic islands to tourism developers via corrupt deals, while keeping
tens of millions of dollars for themselves. It was an audacious theft,
and everyone — from local tycoons to international businesses — got
something out of it.
Everyone, that is, except the Maldivian people.
The public face of the scam was Ahmed Adeeb, then a powerful tourism
minister who for a time also served concurrently as vice president. In
a short career that imploded spectacularly when he was charged with
terrorism, corruption, and abuse of power, Adeeb oversaw a system of
bribery and influence-peddling, backed by threats of violence, that
stripped the country of almost $80 million.
Adeeb is now serving a decades-long prison term. But the true extent
of the firesale he arranged has remained largely obscured in a country
where the media is frequently harassed and courts have proven pliable
to the strongman Yameen. Though Adeeb has already been convicted on
some of the charges relating to his dealings, it was left unclear who
got the leases to most of the islands and lagoons — and Yameen’s
government has said that it does not intend to take them back.
Burundi: Over 200 Killed in Escalating Brutality in Burundi @allafrica
Bujumbura — BURUNDIAN security forces and youth aligned to the ruling
party have allegedly killed more than 200 people in the past five
Human rights groups said they had documented some 29 cases of sexual
and gender-based violence, 35 enforced disappearances, 144 cases of
torture and 694 arbitrary arrests during the period
At least 226 people have been murdered.
Zimbabwe Secures $250m UK Loan - Finmin Lauds 'Show of Confidence in Economy' @allafrica
The facility was extended by the Germcorp Group, an independent
investment management firm focused on emerging markets which was
established in 2014.
The five-year loan facility is aimed at supporting the importation of
essential goods such as electricity, said Germcorp CEO Atanas
New finance minister Prof Ncube the deal was a sign of confidence in
Zimbabwe's economic prospects.
"The granting of the facility by Gemcorp is a strong signal by foreign
investors of their growing confidence in Zimbabwe. I expect more
investors to follow suit," he said in a statement.
This becomes the second such facility from the UK after development
finance institution CDC in May became the first British company to
extend a direct commercial loan to Zimbabwe in more than two decades.
CDC made available a $100 million facility to private firms through
Standard Chartered Bank.
U.K. Suspends Aid to Zambia Amid Corruption Investigation @BBGAfrica
The U.K. has suspended aid to Zambia’s government while investigations
into fraud allegations take place, according to the High Commissioner
of the southern African nation’s historically biggest donor.
Britain has “frozen all bilateral funding,” Fergus Cochrane-Dyet said
in a post to his twitter account. “UKAid takes zero-tolerance approach
to fraud & corruption.”
The U.K. Department for International Development in June suspended
funding to Zambia’s social cash transfer program, which distributes
welfare grants, when it received reports about potential misuse of
funds, it said in an emailed statement. Dora Siliya, the Information
Minister in Africa’s second-biggest copper producer, told reporters
Monday she wasn’t aware of the matter.
How Emerging Market Turmoil Is Affecting Central Banks in Africa Bloomberg
Central banks around Africa -- poised to reveal their first response
to the emerging-market turmoil of the past month -- are likely to
usher in an end to the continent’s easing cycle.
There’s a week to go before the U.S. Federal Reserve delivers what
could be its third interest-rate increase of the year. Currency
weakness from the wider market sell-off preceding that move and a
pickup in inflation may persuade officials to freeze borrowing costs
-- and in some cases even start to talk about tightening.
Central bankers in Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya are likely to keep key
rates unchanged at their meetings next week. This Thursday, South
African officials are seen by some economists as open to a potential
hike. Russia raised its key rate by 25 basis points, while Turkish
regulators increased the rate by 625 basis points.
“We are slowly seeing the effects of recent emerging-market events in
the rest of Africa,” Celeste Fauconnier, an analyst at FirstRand
Ltd.’s Johannesburg-based Rand Merchant Bank unit, said. “It’s safe to
say the cutting trend in most of Africa is over. We’re unlikely to see
a reaction like that of Turkey and Russia, but the chances of further
rate cuts are very slim.”
South Africa’s rand has lost 11 percent against the dollar since the
start of August, pushing inflation expectations to a three-month high.
Tax measures announced in July add to price pressure in Ghana that was
caused by the cedi’s weakness. While inflation remains inside the
central bank’s target band, it has picked up from the low it reached
The currency’s drop has big consequences for inflation and it’s “not
certain how long this will persist and how the cedi will end the
year,” said Courage Boti, an Accra-based economist at Databank Group.
“The Bank of Ghana will want to observe these trends properly” before
moving on rates, he said
While Kenya’s Monetary Policy Committee has said there is room for a
more accommodative stance, price pressures due to the introduction of
a tax on fuel and the decision by lawmakers to not repeal a law
capping commercial borrowing costs may temper this.
The central bank “is unlikely to move again in the short term given
the risk of an uptick in inflation,” said John Ashbourne, a
London-based economist at Capital Economics Ltd.
Nigeria’s inflation rate rose for the first time in 19 months in
August and pre-election spending combined with a record budget could
exacerbate price pressures. Deputy Governor Joseph Nnanna said last
month the central bank is “in the mood” for tightening and will
increase its main interest rate if inflation doesn’t slow.
Gross reserves are near a six-month low and could come under further
pressure due to capital outflows, Feyisike Ilemore, an analyst at ARM
Research, said by phone. Three of ten MPC members voted for tighter
policy in July.
.@Naspers shareholders receiving stock in the new company will be hoping @MultiChoice can continue to find subscribers willing to pay 959 rand ($64.60) a month in South Africa, as streamers such as @netflix Inc. target customers
MultiChoice’s DSTV service holds a special appeal for sports fans,
with cricket, rugby and Formula One joining the most popular soccer
coverage. However, its success depends on customers having enough
disposable income to justify the cost of the subscription, and even in
South Africa the most expensive premium segment is experiencing
slowing growth, according to financial statements for the year through
That issue was compounded following the oil price collapse starting in
2014, which particularly hurt the crude-dependent economies of Nigeria
and Angola. With unfortunate timing for Naspers, Netflix gained
approval to operate throughout the continent in 2016. It charges 129
rand a month plus data costs in South Africa and competes with
MultiChoice’s own video-streaming service, Showmax, which specialises
in more local content. Chinese providers and Canal+ of France also
provide competition to DSTV elsewhere in Africa.
“The world is changing and it is becoming a more digital,” Nick Kunze,
a money manager at Bridge Fund Managers, said by phone from Cape Town.
That said, “not everyone has broadband, so it will take a while for
Netflix to catch up.”
Another simmering issue is a spat with a Nigerian regulator, which has
frozen DSTV prices. The move serves as an uncomfortable reminder of
challenges experienced by Johannesburg-based wireless carrier MTN
Group Ltd, which is facing more than $10 billion of claims in Africa’s
most populous country. Like MTN, MultiChoice has taken the matter to
The dispute is about service quality as opposed to prices, Tunde
Irukera, director-general of Nigeria’s Consumer Protection Council,
said in an interview on Monday.
In total, MultiChoice had 13.5 million subscribers as of the end of
March, compared with 11.9 million the previous year, and generated
annual revenue of 47.1 billion rand. In contrast, Netflix will
probably have 500,000 African subscribers by 2020, according to
Jeffrey Wlodarczak, CEO of New York-based Pivotal Research Group.
“We have stabilized our African business outside South Africa and
expect it to return to profitability,” MultiChoice Chief Executive
Officer Imtiaz Patel told investors on a Monday call. “ There is still
an enormous opportunity for growth -- if we keep acting as efficiently
and focused as we have been in the past two and half years. No doubt
we are through the worst in our African business.”
Vivo Energy Plc is on the lookout for further African acquisitions after adding more than 200 filling stations from Gabon to Mozambique.
Vivo Energy Plc is on the lookout for further African acquisitions
after adding more than 200 filling stations from Gabon to Mozambique.
“There is fantastic growth and potential in these countries,” Chief
Executive Officer Christian Chammas said Tuesday. The expansion plans
of the London-based retailer, which in May pulled off the city’s
biggest new listing this year, follows acquisitions by other fuel
providers in southern Africa as demand climbs.
Vivo is buying 225 fuel stations on the continent from Engen Holdings
Ltd. for $204 million in cash and stock. The transaction has been
revised since the original 2017 agreement, with 75 outlets in the
Democratic Republic of Congo now dropped from the deal following legal
challenges, Chammas said in an interview.
With the acquisition expected to close next March, Chammas said Vivo
is seeking further purchases in South Africa and Nigeria to add to its
stable of more than 2,000 service stations across 23 African
Vivo is also looking to expand its non-fuel retail operations, such as
convenience stores and fast-food restaurants -- a business that grew
22 percent last year.
“It is changing the profile of the company to becoming a very strong
retailer, with ultimately about 75 percent of its business coming from
retail,” up from 60 percent now, Chammas said.
Treasury sees growth hitting seven-year high @dailynation
The imposition VAT on fuel has triggered widespread fears that the
economy is bound to deeply suffer.
However, the government seems to hold a contrary view, with the
National Treasury upgrading Kenya’s economic growth projection for
this year to six per cent from 5.8 per cent in June.
The Treasury is largely banking on renewed confidence by private
investors and increased agricultural output.
Heavy rains in the second quarter of the year and the March 9 truce
between President Uhuru Kenyatta and opposition chief Raila Odinga —
popularly known as the ‘handshake’— are likely to lift growth to a
seven-year high, Treasury secretary Henry Roti said.
Kenya's Anti-Chinese Migrant Raid At CGTN Was A "Deep State" Provocation via @orientalreview's @AKorybko
Kenya raided China’s CGTN offices in the country last week and
temporarily detained some of its workers on suspicion that they were
The government later apologized and promised that it wouldn’t happen
again, but the incident was nevertheless very troubling because it
came a little over a week after President Kenyatta was hosted by Trump
at the White House and just days after the triennial Forum on
China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) that serves as the most important
event in multilateral relations between the People’s Republic and its
“Global South” partners in the continent. Moreover, Chinese-Kenyan
relations are at an exceptional level, with Beijing loaning Nairobi
over $1,5 billion to build the Standard Gauge Railway, which
essentially functions as the Silk Road’s centerpiece in the East
African region’s most stable economy and was prominently featured in
Kenyatta’s reelection campaign last year.
As such, there’s no reason why anyone in Kenya, much less the security
services, wouldn’t be aware of their country’s strategic partnership
with China and had no idea how Beijing would interpret the targeting
of its nationals, especially those that are working for its publicly
funded international media outlet and are therefore obviously in the
country legally. This leads one to consider whether the police
operation was ordered by forces in the Kenyan military, intelligence,
and/or diplomatic bureaucracies (“deep state”) opposed to Kenya’s ties
with China and interested in damaging them by sowing the seeds of
distrust and discord between the two countries. It shouldn’t be
forgotten that this took place the same week that China hosted dozens
of African leaders and roughly two weeks after Kenyatta’s trip to
Washington, thus throwing its timing into question and suggesting that
this was indeed a preplanned provocation unleashed for the
aforementioned political reasons.
Kenya ChinaChina was wise enough to not overreact and fall into the
trap that was being prepared for it, but the incident must have
alerted it to the likelihood that a third party – presumably the US –
is working through shadowy channels in order to engineer scenarios for
damaging its ties with Kenya and probably other African countries as
well. This isn’t surprising since forward-looking analyses already
forecast that the continent will become an increased zone of
competition between Great Powers, especially in the context of the New
Cold War over whether the world will retain the American-led
international order or move towards the one being spearheaded by
China. Accordingly, it can be predicted that more provocations like
this one will occur in the coming future.