JSE Direct with Simon Brown

Momentum is back (#362)

July 31, 2019

Simon Shares

  • Shoprite* (JSE code: SHP) trading update sees full year profits down. But the real point is that the second half of the year was way better than the first half as they fixed DC and IT issues and had no further strike action. But it is still tough with lots of products in deflation which is squeezing margins.
  • Massmart (JSE code: MSM) update was a shocker with Game bleeding like crazy. Not a surprise, but as Nic Norma-Smith said on Twitter "Wal-Mart paid $2.3bn for 52% of Massmart in 2010. Today the stake is worth $370m.". Ouch.
  • NFEMOM*, the ABSA momentum ETF has been flying and is almost +20% year-to-date and just behind the S&P500 and best over last year (of indices, local and sub, that I track). I always like momentum and when ABSA changed the methodology of this ETF I switched my personal momentum portfolio into the ETF. Just as I did this everybody claimed momentum was dead, and the ETF struggled. But momentum never dies, even when (if?) value ever comes back, those value stocks will gain momentum and so momentum traders will profit.
  • Loser indices so far year-to-date are the banks and mid caps, both slightly negative (excluding dividends). The resource index is doing well enough, but the industrial has actually beaten it - likely driven by Richemont* (JSE code: CFR) and Naspers (JSE code: NPN).
  • ASX finally breaches the pre crisis levels and makes a new all-time-high, 12 years later.
  • Nicky Newton-King is resigning as CEO of the JSE. She's been a great CEO transforming the technical side of the JSE during a period when values traded have been falling off a cliff. On that note, September sees the Naspers (JSE code: NPN) listing their non-SA assets in Amsterdam and while that could in itself see a bump of some 4% to the Top40 - it's going to hurt value traded even further with maybe as much as R1-R2billion of daily trade leaving to trade on Amsterdam instead.
  • We think our local property space is having a tough time. But check the Intu (JSE code: ITU) results. A horror show with like-for-like net rental income down 7.7% and guidance for rental growth of -4% to -6%. Capco (JSE code: CCO) a little better and they're splitting out Covent Gardens (their prize asset) but it still tough and the share price remains under pressure while Intu share seems to be racing to the bottom.
  • Fall out from Boris Johnson win and insists on a hard Brexit is not so much in the markets, but the currency as Sterling continues to slide to the lowest levels since 2017. This helps much of the FTSE100 as foreign earnings dominate.
  • If you get the pamphlet about investing in 72 tonnes or either; iron ore, coal or magnesium. Throw it away, it's a scam, especially the part about holding for 18 months. That will be one massive warehouse bill.
  • Another week and platinum continues to edge higher now around US$880.
  • The final report of the presidential advisory panel on land reform and agriculture (aka #EWC) was released over the weekend and frankly it is exactly as expected. Sober and sensible. Yes lots of hysteria, there will always be, ignore it, it's mostly ill informed or just based on fear or hate.
  • Understanding the SYGEU.
  • Money Hacks: Bring down insurance premiums.
  • Upcoming events;

* I hold ungeared positions.

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