Carnegie Market Blog

 

Robots, GE and Alexa

Posted by Brent Luce on Jun 20, 2018 3:58:55 PM

Alexa for Hospitality 

By now, we are all familiar with Alexa.  We have learned how to use the AI assistant to play music, buy things, change the temperature, turn off the lights and many other things.  This is just the beginning – now that 50 million Alexa devices are in U.S homes, Alexa is moving beyond the home.   Yesterday, Amazon announced the launch of Alexa of Hospitality and a partnership Marriott to roll this technology out across the world.  This essentially brings the concierge and front desk to your room.  Alexa will be able to handle many tasks like bringing more towels, changing temperature/lighting, ordering food, checking out and many other things.  I wonder what Alexa’s next frontier is?  Watch Alexa for Hospitality in Action

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Topics: $AMZN, Robots, Amazon.com, Alexa

Bezos Annual Letter and Flattening Yield Curve

Posted by Brent Luce on Apr 20, 2018 4:13:56 PM

Jeff Bezos Annual Letter

Earlier this week, Jeff Bezos’ annual Amazon.com shareholder letter was released.  This “Buffettesque” letter is must-read for anyone interested not only in Amazon.com or business in general, but it also sheds light on the disruptive and transformative forces affecting investments and the way we live our lives.  It is packed with good ideas and amazing updates related to Amazon.com itself.  I could make many comments on the letter, but I will just provide you with the letter itself:  Read Jeff Bezos' Annual Amazon.com Shareholder Letter.  Once you read the letter, See Why Business Leaders Love Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos' Letter So Much

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Topics: Recession, $AMZN, Amazon.com, Jeff Bezos, yield curve

Amazon HQ2, GDP and a Boring Year

Posted by Brent Luce on Sep 20, 2017 4:22:17 PM

Where has the blog been?

It has been three weeks since the last blog and wherever I go, people are asking where the blog has been.  Fear not!  The blog is alive and well, and so am I!  We were dealing with some technology difficulties, but if you are reading this, then it means those issues have been solved.  
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Topics: Volatility, Interest Rates, $AMZN, Amazon.com, GDP

Big Data in Ohio and Energy Divergence

Posted by Brent Luce on Aug 24, 2017 4:15:00 PM

Energy Stock Divergence

The energy sector has been weak all year, and is now down about 17% year-to-date.  As one would expect, energy stocks generally move with the underlying price in oil.  Recently, this relationship has diverged.  Since June, oil has recovered from $42 to $48 a barrel.  Meanwhile, energy stocks have continued to fall to new lows. To me, this reflects a somewhat bearish sentiment in these stocks as investors have given up on them and pursued other opportunities.  The lower prices have, of course, driven up dividend yields.  Exxon Mobil, for example, is now paying a 4% dividend yield, which is at the high end of its 20-year range.  Divergences like this usually correct themselves, so it will be interesting to see how this plays out.  WATCH:  Time To Buy Energy Stocks? 

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Topics: Retail, Big Data, Amazon.com, $FL, Energy Stocks, $BA

Amazon buys Whole Foods - The Cost of Solar Power is Dropping

Posted by Brent Luce on Jun 21, 2017 4:26:31 PM

Quote of the Day

“It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers” – James Thurber

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Topics: $AMZN, Solar Power, Sectors, Amazon.com, Disruption, Whole Foods

Tons of Pigs, Data and Boxes

Posted by Brent Luce on Jun 7, 2017 4:41:37 PM

Factoid

Each year, the people of China consume 600 million pigs and that number grows every year.  While this may seem random, there are interesting demographic forces and investment implications behind this factoid.  MORE:  Expanding Chinese Pig Production is no Black Swan

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Topics: Real Estate, Big Data, Amazon.com, Parcels, Pigs, Mexico

Retail Is Struggling Financially - Current Inflation Numbers are Out

Posted by Brent Luce on May 12, 2017 3:02:33 PM

Retail Death Spiral

If you have not noticed, brick-and-mortar retailers have not been doing so well.  Value investors who have been trying to “bottom-fish” in the space have continued to suffer.  As we know, Amazon and other companies using and benefiting from new technologies have been perhaps the most disruptive force ever to affect consumer buying behavior.  As I have mentioned before, we seem to be arriving at the breaking point where the weak can no longer fight the battle.  This is just one example of how new technologies are changing the way we live and affecting every business and sector.  When looking at investments, I think there are two types of companies – those poised to benefit from these disruptive forces and those who are likely to suffer from it.  The table below, which I am borrowing from MKM, shows the number of store closings announced just this year – this is just major stores, and does not include the hordes of smaller retail stores that have closed.  Amazon has been taking over fifty cents of every new dollar moving into retail e-commerce, so we can guess that 50% of these sales are going right into Amazon’s pocket.    At the bottom you will see the stock price charts of traditional retailers versus Amazon; it is self-explanatory.  Deep Dive:  The New Retail Ecosystem

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Topics: Inflation, $AMZN, Big Data, Amazon.com, Technology, Retail Distribution

Disruption and Active with Passive

Posted by Brent Luce on Apr 20, 2017 4:48:00 PM

Getting Active with Passive Investments

The battle between active and passive investing has been a topic for years.  There are arguments for both and there are varying ways to successfully deploy these strategies. I have blogged before about the proliferation of ETFs and that many investors seek ETFs because they believe they are passive, but in many cases the ETFs they are investing in are specialized and, therefore, not passive.  There is even a whiskey ETF, which I blogged about back in October. Not only are people investing in non-passive ETFs, but they then trade in and out of these not-so-passive ETFs, thereby executing a very active approach.  I have yet to meet an individual investor who successfully held passive ETFs through a bear market without making changes or reacting emotionally at the wrong time.  There are some truly passive ETFs in existence, but as the table below illustrates, even those are not being used as passive investments.  SPY, which is the best known and a truly passive ETF has an average holding period of only 15 days – investors are using this to adjust market exposure on a short-term basis.  

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Topics: Jobless Claims, Passive Investing, $AMZN, Amazon.com, Disruption

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