January 2013

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What Price Did Carl Icahn Pay For Transocean Shares

Topic: Transocean (SIX: RIGN) Judging by the following two charts, demand surged around the turn of the year in Transocean shares. The explanation: Between January 1st and January 9th (Chart 1) Carl Icahn must have bought the lions share of the options and shares  in Transocean at an average price around 42-46, I would guess, based on traded volume (Chart 2) and charts indicating where volatility spiked. The first chance…


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Largest Global Banks Going Long(er) Equities

HSBC another powerhouse to announce that it has increased its exposure to equities: More equities. HSBC strategists have lowered the probability of below-trend growth, and increased the probability of above-trend growth. They’re lifting their equity allocation by 8% and believe that stocks are still priced below fair value. Equity markets should benefit from rising price/earnings ratios, the key drivers of equity returns in their scenarios. They also appear good value…


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Why Equities Are Well Bid

I see three big reasons for the strong bid in large cap stocks (in Switzerland in particular) 1. SNB (Swiss National Bank) investing in index funds / highly rated companies / blue chips. Few dozen billion across different equity markets across the world. Investors such as the SNB are, in my opinion, leading to large caps being overweighted/overbought. Small and mid caps could be the better long-term risk reward trade. 2….


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Equity investors are considerably more optimistic than economists and may be positioned for disappointment

Very interesting remarks from Barry Knapp over at Barclays Capital this morning: Equity market valuation is a powerful driver of returns in the long term, but the market seems to reach fair value for about an instant on the way up and the way down. With that in mind, we suspect a repeat of the 2011 and 2012 corrections due to a deterioration in the growth outlook may not wait…


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CHF: Reduced Safe Haven Value – Overvalued Swissie

Recent comments by several big banks underscore what we’ve been seeing in currency markets: The Swissies’ safe have value is falling and currency hedges in place are being reduced. As an example I’ve quoted two strategist comments from this week: We also recommend going short GBP/USD and long USD/CHF to reflect reduced safe haven value for UK and Swiss assets as the euro area gradually heals. /source: Barclays Capital, 17-01-2013…


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Why High-Dividend Strategies Are Currently En Vogue

 Low economic growth (and generally uncertain growth prospects). In phases of low economic growth dividends make up a larger proportion of total return than in times of above average growth. Demographic situation: In the industrialized economies the average age of the population is rising and the proportion of the population generating income is sinking. Low interest rates mean that investors need yield from other sources. Investors looking for safe investments…


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Future of Swiss Publishing Houses – Interview with Hans Voigt – Tamedia Losing Out?

If you own shares in Tamedia or NZZ todays Interview with Hans Voigt is a must read! (German only: http://www.sonntagonline.ch/ressort/medien/2708/) Just a few of the many interesting comments by Hans Voigt, ex-“20 Minuten” Editor-in-Chief: Q: How much longer will newspapers be printed? A: “20 Minuten” for another 4 years. “Blick am Abend” for another 3 years. Then the state owned railway company “SBB” (Swiss Federal Railways) will have a decent WLAN…


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Multinational Corporations & Pleonexia (Tax-Dodging)

Daily-Mail headline today: Google and the £6billion Bermuda tax shelter: Web giant’s haven revealed as Cameron urges global crackdown The ancient Greeks had a word for it – pleonexia – which means an overreaching desire for more than one’s share. Aristoteles named pleonexia as one of three forms of injustice. Zuberbühler Associates advises corporate clients against elaborate unethical tax-dodging as the likelihood of a sharp backlash is rising and will…