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Thursday 21st of May 2020

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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 

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Markets run on narratives. That is because trading in them is ultimately determined by humans, who find it far easier to think in terms of stories than anything else. @bopinion @johnauthers
World Of Finance

Markets run on narratives. That is because trading in them is ultimately determined by humans, who find it far easier to think in terms of stories than anything else. 

Express the case for a stock as a series of numbers and it won't connect; knit them together into a story and you have a chance of making the sale.

Robert Shiller, Nobel laureate professor of economics at Yale University, devoted all of his latest book to the importance of narratives. 

With so much uncertainty around the coronavirus, we have a tendency to fall back on those that play to our greatest hopes and fears.

That leads naturally to the story of Moderna Inc., which announced results from tests of its coronavirus vaccine that “couldn’t have been better,” according to the CEO on Monday morning;  sold stock Tuesday morning; and then tumbled as Stat, a respected medical journalism site, suggested that the results as published said nothing. 

I invite everyone to read up and draw their own conclusions. What is interesting is how the S&P 500 came along for the ride:

The Monday story, which suggested a coronavirus vaccine might be available in time to thwart a much-feared “second wave” in the fall, had given the stock market its best day in several months. 

Stat’s bucket of cold water helped ensure a bad end to Tuesday with the S&P 500 in negative territory. 

The episode tells us there is more room for the market to rise, if people can be given an excuse. It also shows the depth of desire for someone to come up with a vaccine that can short-circuit what looks like being at least another 12 months of nervousness, fear, ever more fractious politics, and a sluggish economy — and that the current price is based on some bearish assumptions.

Most of all, it demonstrates that with so few precedents to guide us, and with very few knowing the science, the entire debate about the coronavirus is being conducted in rival narratives. 

This is true in financial markets and in politics. Bulls, bears, and those on left and right are all complicit. 

I recommend this podcast with Ben Hunt of the Epsilon Theory blog. He suggests that debate has been dominated by three narratives, all of which have been abused:

“It’s Just A Flu” (used as a justification for minimizing the entire pandemic);

“Herd Immunity” (to justify carrying on with economic activity as usual, and risking lives);

“Flatten the Curve” (to justify continuing with tight lockdown measures even when they have served their purpose).

After the last two days, I might be inclined to add a fourth: “A Vaccine Will Cure Everything.” 

Many believe that life cannot return to anything like normal until we have an effective and safe one. Now, some are moving to a corollary: “Just as soon as we have a vaccine, everything will return to normal.”

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Worth noting: Morgan Stanley acted as the sole book runner on Moderna's $1.34 billion stock sale this week. @AndrewE_Dun
World Of Finance

Far from the only bank to stay bullish on Moderna. Goldman Sachs now has a $MRNA PT of $105, Oppenheimer is at $108.

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History, as Barack Obama said of American progress, zigs and zags. Great changes set off chain reactions: @TheAtlantic @TomMcTague
Law & Politics

07-OCT-2019 :: The World in the 21st century exhibits viral, wildfire and exponential characteristics and feedback loops which only become obvious in hindsight.

The Pandemic’s Coming Geopolitical Second Wave. @TheAtlantic @TomMcTague 

Whether the pandemic brings about revolutionary change or simply accelerates the currents already working under the surface, the fact is that the epidemiological second wave isn't the only one we need worry about.

“Historians love chapter breaks,” said Robert Kaplan, “COVID-19 will come to be seen as a chapter break.” “Crises,” Kaplan noted, “put history on fast-forward.” @TheAtlantic @TomMcTague 

The Viral Moment has Arrived #COVID19 

As I try and peer through into the Future the one thing I do know is that its not reverting to what it was. We are turning the Page here

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''They fancied themselves free'' wrote Camus, ―''and no one will ever be free so long as there are pestilences'' #COVID19
Market Crashes / Panic

In this respect, our townsfolk were like everybody else, wrapped up in themselves; in other words, they were humanists: they disbelieved in pestilences.

A pestilence isn't a thing made to man's measure; therefore we tell ourselves that pestilence is a mere bogy of the mind, a bad dream that will pass away.

But it doesn't always pass away and, from one bad dream to another, it is men who pass away, and the humanists first of all, because they have taken no precautions.

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Camus and the Political Tests of a Pandemic @NewYorker
Market Crashes / Panic

n 1943, Albert Camus lived in German-occupied Paris at the Hôtel Mercure, on the Rue de la Chaise, on the Left Bank. 

He had published “The Stranger” during the previous year to a strong reception, and he was becoming a notable figure in Parisian literary circles. 

Not far from the Mercure was the Hôtel Lutetia, the headquarters of the Abwehr, the German military’s notorious counterintelligence service. 

Traffic signs in German dotted the area. Camus could walk from his residence to the office of his publisher, Gallimard, where he worked as a manuscript reader, earning four thousand francs a month, according to Olivier Todd, one of his biographers. 

In addition to his day job, Camus struggled to write what would become “The Plague,” a novel, published in 1947, that has enjoyed a deserved revival in this time of the coronavirus, with writers reflecting on it as an allegory about the “virus of Fascism” and as a work that is, as my colleague Adam Gopnik put it, “becoming to this disruption what W. H. Auden’s ‘September 1, 1939’ was to the aftermath of 9/11.”

The novel recounts the outlooks and actions of men in the coastal city of Oran, Algeria, as they respond to a fictional outbreak of bubonic plague and a subsequent quarantine. 

Like all enduring literature, it can be read in multiple ways, and Camus made clear that this was his intention. 

One such reading involves the politics of a modern epidemic. In this political season of our own, as the right to vote safely amid the pandemic is under threat, even while President Trump routinely insults journalists of color and issues scores of false statements about his performance since the coronavirus swept the country, it can be uncanny to encounter Camus’s seven-decade-old account of Oran’s dissembling Prefect, whose advisers cannot bear initially to acknowledge the catastrophe, or even to speak aloud the name of the disease that is its cause.

The novel’s hero and narrator, Bernard Rieux, a physician, takes quiet moral action amid his city’s devastation, even as he understands that his potential to bring about change is highly constrained. 

His outlook is surely drawn from Camus’s experiences during the occupation of Paris. 

For much of 1943, he pursued his literary projects openly; among other things, he explored working with Jean-Paul Sartre on the latter’s play “No Exit.” 

But, that winter, Claude Bourdet, the director of the National Resistance Committee (mainly aligned with Charles de Gaulle in the French struggle against Germany), asked Camus to join up as an editor and writer, and he agreed. 

He was provided false papers under the name Albert Mathe, and became the editor of Combat, a clandestine newspaper. 

The paper was supposed to come out every other week, although it struggled to meet that rate of publication; by the time Camus got involved, the resistance was printing about a quarter of a million copies of each edition.

Camus never ran guns or conducted sabotage against the Nazis, but his editorial role was risky enough; if caught, he could expect to be tortured by his Abwehr neighbors, and, at best, interned in miserable conditions. 

He wrote in Combat with clarity and force. None of the paper’s authors signed their articles, but among the essays commonly attributed by scholars to Camus is one published in March, 1944, titled “Against Total War, Total Resistance.” 

It takes note of recent incidents of collective punishment carried out by the German occupiers. 

In the Isère, a department in eastern France, “a whole village was burned by the Germans on the mere suspicion that compulsory labor service holdouts might have taken refuge there.”

Another time, in the Ain, after German troops failed to find holdouts they were looking for, they “shot the mayor and two leading citizens.” 

These were Frenchmen who might have said of the occupation, Camus wrote, “This doesn’t concern me.” 

He went on, possibly reflecting the evolution of his own thinking during 1943: “Don’t say, ‘I sympathize, that’s quite enough, and the rest is no concern of mine.’ Because you will be killed, deported, or tortured as a sympathizer just as easily as if you were a militant. Act: your risk will be no greater, and you will at least share in the peace at heart that the best of us take with them into the prisons.”

Camus also retained hope about the power of facts to defeat Joseph Goebbels’s propaganda: although a lie, he wrote, “reprinted a million times, retains a certain power, stating the truth is enough to repel the falsehood.” 

In another Combat piece attributed to him, he celebrated “clandestine journalism,” which, in the circumstances, “is honorable because it is a proof of independence, because it involves a risk. It is good, it is healthy, that everything to do with current political events has become dangerous.” 

In the future, he added, politics and journalism “will be obliged . . . to judge those who dishonored them.”

Early on in “The Plague,” Rieux meets a visiting journalist, Raymond Rambert, and asks if he would “be allowed to publish an unqualified condemnation of the present state of things? . . . I’ve no use for statements in which something is kept back.” 

Rieux presses Oran’s Prefect to stop denying the obvious—that the plague is rampaging in the city—and to protect the population. 

One difficulty proves to be that none of the men leading Oran has the knowledge or the experience required to cope with invisible contagion. Camus’s characterization suggests a colonial Algerian version of a Jared Kushner-led task force:

For the most part they were men with well-defined and sound ideas on everything concerning exports, banking, the fruit or wine trade; men of proved ability in handling problems relating to insurance, the interpretation of ill-drawn contracts, and the like. . . . But as regards plague their competence was practically nil.

Prefects and Presidents command bureaucracies and hierarchies; viruses elude them effortlessly. 

That Camus, writing in the mid-nineteen-forties, could conjure with such clarity, during an epidemic, a political morality that advocates for factual reporting, medical science, and public-health regimens seems astonishing. 

But Camus was less interested in the evolving science of epidemic response than in our capacity as individuals to face the truth, endure, and contribute to success under extreme conditions

Rieux’s breakthrough in this respect, as Camus narrates, is to let go of speculations, to concentrate on the “certitude” of his daily medical rounds. 

“It was only a matter of lucidly recognizing what had to be recognized; of dispelling extraneous shadows and doing what needed to be done. . . . The thing was to do your job as it should be done.” 

Those sentences might sound banal in another setting, but not in the context of the imagined plague in Oran, or in the light of Camus’s lived experience at Combat under Fascist occupation.

The reason is that successive natural and political crises, such as the one we are enduring this year, have taught us, as Zaretsky put it, that “there is nothing ordinary about humanity and good sense. As we see now on both sides of the Atlantic, both traits are quite extraordinary, especially when they confront the entwined threats of biological and ideological plague.”

A reality TV star botched the response to a global pandemic and now we are all imprisoned in our homes and forced to watch him daily. @JenaFriedman #COVID19

What is thriving, however, is all that ridiculous ―Red Culture & nauseating adulation that system heaps on itself via shameless pro-Party hacks who chirrup hosannahs at every turn #COVID19

The virus may be the most dangerous adversary America has ever faced. It's like the US was invaded. Tweeted @balajis #COVID19

The normal defenses fail. It can't be bombed. Bank accounts can't be frozen. Unbreakable morale. No supply chain. Lives off the land. Infinite reinforcements. Fully decentralized.

To watch the Daily Briefing is to understand that the Control Machine has a Novice, a hubristic Narcissus in charge of the Console #COVID19

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Political Reflections - Thank you to all of the ambassadors & representatives from around the world who attended our inauguration ceremony today. @iingwen
Law & Politics

Although we had to maintain social distance, I could still feel the warmth of your congratulations & best wishes.

October 7, 2019 I am sure Xi sees Hong Kong and Taiwan like a virus and he is looking to impose a quarantine just like he has imposed on Xinjiang.

“Crises put history on fast-forward.” @TheAtlantic @TomMcTague

The "Zeitgeist" of a time is its defining spirit or its mood. Capturing "zeitgeist" of the Now is not an easy thing because we are living in a dizzyingly fluid moment. 

ICYMI: Trump's trade adviser Peter Navarro is accusing China of using air travelers to “seed” #Covid_19 to cities all around the world @QuickTake

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Some wacko in China just released a statement blaming everybody other than China for the Virus which has now killed hundreds of thousands of people. @realDonaldTrump
Law & Politics

Please explain to this dope that it was the “incompetence of China”, and nothing else, that did this mass Worldwide killing!

China must have enough strength to ensure that the #US would not dare to take strategic risks and launch military attacks on China under any circumstances. This is not at all an excessive viewpoint: Editor-in-Chief Hu Xijin #HuSays @globaltimesnews

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Global coronavirus cases surpassed 5 million on Wednesday, with Latin America overtaking the United States and Europe #COVID19 @Reuters
Market Crashes / Panic

Global coronavirus cases surpassed 5 million on Wednesday, with Latin America overtaking the United States and Europe in the past week to report the largest portion of new daily cases globally.

t represents a new phase in the virus’ spread, which initially peaked in China in February, before large-scale outbreaks followed in Europe and the United States.

Latin America accounted for around a third of the 91,000 cases reported earlier this week. Europe and the United States each accounted for just over 20%.

A large number of those new cases came from Brazil, which recently surpassed Germany, France and the United Kingdom to become the third-largest outbreak in the world, behind the United States and Russia.

Cases in Brazil are now rising at a daily pace second only to the United States.

The first 41 cases of coronavirus were confirmed in Wuhan, China, on Jan. 10 and it took the world until April 1 to reach its first million cases. Since then, about 1 million new cases are reported every two weeks, according to a Reuters tally.

At more than 5 million cases, the virus has infected more people in under six months than the annual total of severe flu cases, which the World Health Organization estimates is around 3 million to 5 million globally.

24-FEB-2020 :: "The greatest shortcoming of the human race is our inability to understand the exponential function." 

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Total confirmed cases to nearly 5 million @TetotRemi
Market Crashes / Panic

The Viral Moment has Arrived #COVID19 

Gladwell ‟Tipping Point‟‟ moment in an epidemic when a virus reaches critical mass. It‟s the boiling point. It‟s the moment on the graph when the line starts to shoot straight upwards.

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Globally, daily new cases are averaging 93,000 per day and are trending @TetotRemi
Market Crashes / Panic

10-MAY-2020 ::  We are trending in the 80,000-100,000 #COVID cases a day now #COVID19 

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The most infected #coronavirus countries are now emerging and frontier markets @RencapMan
Emerging Markets

10-MAY-2020 :: #COVID19 and the Spillover Moment

We are witnessing a Spill Over into EM and Frontier Geographies ―

Brazil is the global epicenter of the coronavirus.

BRICS ex China is accelerating

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Nature could never turn RaTg13 into SARS-CoV-2, not in 30 years, not in 100 billion years. Never. Natural mutation is random @JJ2000426

But the difference between RaTG13 and SARS-CoV-2 is highly non-random and thus by artificial design. There is 1 in quadrillion chance this is random.

01-MAR-2020 ::  “A paranoid is someone who knows a little of what's going on. ”― William S. Burroughs The Origin of the #CoronaVirus #COVID19

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A near full-length HIV-1 genome from 1966 recovered from formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue @PNASNews

The Question is whether you are going to play ''Whack a Mole'' and see the Moles or play it with a blindfold on @nfergus @UnherdTv @freddiesayers

Viruses are in essence non linear exponential and multiplicative #COVID19 

@MattHancock “false tie adjust” is performed at times of discomfort, fear, worry or vulnerability. #PMQs #PMQ #COVID @StefSimanowitz

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Currency Markets at a Glance WSJ
World Currencies

Euro 1.0970

Dollar Index 99.33

Japan Yen. 107.98

Swiss Franc 0.9656

Pound 1.2193

Aussie 0.6556

India Rupee 75.722

South Korea Won 1229.67

Brazil Real 5.6939

Egypt Pound 15.81

South Africa Rand 18.0358

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UK govt just sold bonds at a negative yield for the first time ever. £3.75bn of conventional 3 year bonds (eg not index-linked) at -0.003%. Investors literally paying the government to take their money…@EdConwaySky
World Of Finance

Little bit of history here: UK govt just sold bonds at a negative yield for the first time ever. £3.75bn of conventional 3 year bonds (eg not index-linked) at -0.003%.  Investors literally paying the government to take their money…

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Toxic mix of a ‟Voodoo‟ @jairbolsonaro & a runaway #COVID19
Emerging Markets

I’m burying my mother.” @QuickTake

16-FEB-2020 :: ''viruses exhibit non-linear and exponential characteristics' #COVID19 

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Daily cases are trending in Emerging Markets...@TetotRemi
Emerging Markets

We are witnessing a Spill Over into EM and Frontier Geographies #COVID19 

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India’s coronavirus infections crossed the 100,000 mark and are escalating at the fastest pace in Asia @business #COVID19
Emerging Markets

India is now among the nations worst hit by the epidemic, with a 28% increase in cases since last week according to Bloomberg’s Coronavirus Tracker. 

Neighbor and nuclear rival Pakistan has 43,966 cases including 939 deaths. Its cases increased by 19% over the same period, the tracker showed.

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In Africa, the number of daily cases is also trending, but we are still at a very early stage...@TetotRemi

02-MAR-2020 ::  The #COVID19 and SSA and the R Word

We Know that the #Coronavirus is exponential, non linear and multiplicative.

what exponential disease propagation looks like in the real world. Real world exponential growth looks like nothing, nothing, nothing ... then cluster, cluster, cluster ... then BOOM!

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From some of Goldman's EM economists. 'In CEEMEA, we estimate that debt/GDP ratios will rise to high levels (>75%) in Egypt, South Africa, Kenya, and Ghana.' @Markbohlund

The worrying development is Transmission Hotspots #COVID19 and the Spillover Moment

Coronavirus: @WHO warns of 190,000 deaths in Africa @TheAfricaReport

WHO warns that the coronavirus pandemic could 'smoulder' in Africa for several years

Should the various lockdowns currently being eased in many African countries fail to  ̳bend the curve‘, between 29m – 44m Africans risk being infected, with deaths potentially reaching 190,000.

The WHO believe that transmissions will likely be slower — because of Africa‘s age pyramid, and social and environmental factors — the pandemic risks lasting for far longer.

―While COVID-19 likely won‘t spread as exponentially in Africa as it has elsewhere in the world, it likely will smoulder in transmission hotspots,‖ said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, the WHO Regional Director for Africa.

“COVID-19 could become a fixture in our lives for the next several years unless a proactive approach is taken by many governments in the region. We need to test, trace, isolate and treat.”

The worrying development is Transmission Hotspots

Kano in Nigeria for example

• Western Cape growing at an alarming rate @sugan250388

Someone with close knowledge of the medical profession said it was almost impossible to secure a hospital bed in several cities.

The Aga Khan hospital in Dar es Salaam had a well-equipped ward for 80 coronavirus patients, but several were dying each night, he said.

The Question for SSA is whether these Transmission Hot Spots expand and conflate?

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Tanzania Lifts Ban On International Flights @TheCitizenTZ @allafrica
Tourism, Travel & Transport

The African @jairbolsonaro is of course @MagufuliJP #COVID19 and the Spillover Moment 

Tunawahi  pati after patiiiiii @MSalimu

10-MAY-2020 :: Regime Implosion risk in SSA is trending higher #COVID19 

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N.S.E Equities - Finance & Investment

Jubilee Insurance Company Ltd. reports FY 2019 EPS -5.325% Earnings 

Par Value:                  5/-
Closing Price:           249.50
Total Shares Issued:          72472950.00
Market Capitalization:        18,082,001,025
EPS:             49.07 
PE:               5.084 
FY Net Insurance Premium Revenue 19.489b versus 17.249b
FY Other Revenue 13.339b versus 10.690b +24.78%
FY Total income 32.829b versus 27.939b
FY Net Insurance benefits and claims [19.726b] versus [15.929b]
FY Total Expenses and commissions [9.083b] versus [8.011b]
FY Result of Operating Activities 4.018b versus 3.998b
FY Share of Results of Associates 988.521m versus 1.339b
FY Profit before Tax 5.007b versus 5.338b
FY Profit after Tax 4.017b versus 4.126b
FY EPS 49.07 versus 51.83 
Increase in Cash Equivalents [2.172b]
Cash and cash Equivalents 15.019b versus 17.187b 
FY Total Assets 130b +14%
The Directors recommend, declare and approve a final dividend of Kes.8/= per share, subject to withholding tax where applicable making the total dividend for the year of Kes. 9/= per share or 180% (2018:180%).
GWP + DA 38.2b +10% 
Strong balance sheet.
Would be good to know what led to a +24.78% increase in the Other Revenue line item. 
3.6% dividend Yield.
Its difficult to discern what the Medical Insurance Profile looks like.
It would be good to know the GOK Bond Position because its overweight I am sure.
Jubilee Holdings Ltd - Audited Consolidated Financial Results for the Year Ended 31st-Dec-2019. @tradingroomke

World Currencies

.@WorldBank approves $1 billion funding for Kenya budget support @Reuters 

The bank said that $750 million of the loan, which will come from the International Development Association, will be repaid over a 30-year period, after a grace period of five years, with 1.35% interest.
The second component of $250 million, which will come from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, will have a market-based interest rate of about 2%.
“Both amounts are highly concessional,” Felipe Jaramillo, the World Bank’s Kenya head, told an online news conference.

World Of Finance

Kenya's fiscal metrics were already weak compared to other B2 peers. The primary concern is the medium term debt, 50% of which is in foreign currency, and the exchange rate could depreciate @MoodysInvSvc @bankelele

Kenyan Economy

Every day's a Sunday as Kenya's power demand drops @ReutersAfrica @GeorgeObulutsa 

Kenya Electricity Generating Co. (KenGen), said on Wednesday demand for its electricity had dropped by about 8% due to restrictions imposed to limit the spread of the new coronavirus, with Sunday usage levels seen throughout the week.
“We are experiencing ‘prolonged Sundays’... when typically, consumption goes down due to low demand ... We have almost the same demand for power as on Sundays, and all through the week,” CEO Rebecca Miano said in an emailed response to Reuters questions.


Kenya Shilling versus The Dollar Live ForexPros 106.90

by Aly Khan Satchu (www.rich.co.ke)
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