Walmart and Target is in focus for me this week. Two corporations in the same business but also very different. Walmart is a giant while Target is smaller with more growth potential. Walmart will report earnings on Tuesday before the market opens. Target on Wednesday.
Walmart`s EPS forecast for the quarter is $1,21. The reported EPS for the same quarter last year was $1,18. The consensus EPS forecast for Target`s quarter is $2,11 vs $0,59 for the same quarter last year.
The numbers for Target looks better than the giant Walmart, but the number as a whole will also give us more information about the consumer spending during the Covid-19 pandemic recovery.
Walmart has been one of the big winners thanks to the pandemic, and reported record fourth-quarter and fullyear sales in February. However, the momentum slowed down in the first three months of the year. So, two more rounds of direct checks to most Americans didn`t help this time.
Analysts expect to see Walmart`s revenue dip 2% but earnings to rise by 4%. The company has been shelling out additional capital to raise wages for workers and build out its relationships with shoppers.
Walmart will spend nearly $14 billion in the current fiscal year to build out supply chain capacity and automation to keep pace with demand. Investors will look at Walmart`s newer initiatives in this week`s earnings report.
Target is smaller but grow faster. The company is expected a growth of 10,1% from the prior-year reported figure. It`s also estimated a big jump for Target`s earnings on Wednesday. EPS has risen to $2,11 which is a sharp improvement from 59 cents from a year ago.
Target is also one of the biggest winners during the pandemic, and its one-stop shopping destinations has been a big success. Same-day delivery of in-store purchases and fast track technology improvements has also been a great success for Target.
It`s time for the world leaders to come together in Davos once again. The World Economic Forum (WEF) is the Organization for Public-Private Cooperation. The Forum engages the foremost political, business, cultural, and other leaders of society to shape global, regional, and industry agendas.
The WEF agenda is scheduled to be held between January 25 and 29. Mukesh Ambani, Anand Mahindra, Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari, Piyush Goyal, and others will attend the online event. The decision to host the event online comes amidst the Covid 19 pandemic situation, but WEF will host its physical annual meeting in May in Singapore.
As the WEF writes in its statement, the pandemic has accelerated systemic changes that were apparent before its inception. The fault lines that emerged in 2020 now appear as critical crossroads in 2021.
They will talk about «How to save the world,» and topics around that issue will be Covid 19 and climate change. Fairer economic; financial and monetary systems of different countries. Tech for good; big data and other tech disruptions. Society and future of work; remote work culture and gender parity. Better business, healthy future, and beyond geo-politics.
The «Davos Agenda» will also mark the launch of WEF`s Great Reset Initiative and begin the preparation of the special Annual Meeting during the spring.
Biden has repeatedly said that Trump is doing nothing to save the people from Covid-19. So has the Media Mob. But the fact is that Trump has done a lot to get a new vaccine on the market. Normally, it takes 5 to 10 years to get a vaccine on the market, but Trump and his administration did it within a few months.
What Trump has been working hard on is Operation Warp Speed (OWS). The first news report of OWS was on April 29, 2020, and the program was officially announced on May 15,2020. OWS was formed to encourage private and public partnerships to enable faster approval and production of vaccines during the COVID-19 pandemic.
OWS is funded with about $10 billion from CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) passed by the United States Congress on March 27, 2020. OWS`s overall goal is to deliver 300 million doses of a vaccine by January, and that`s enough to immunize 45% of the population.
Two companies are backed by OWS and that is Pfizer and Moderna. Both have announced positive results from their final stage of trials. Pfizer`s vaccine was found to be 95% effective in preventing COVID-19, while Moderna`s was found to be 94,5% effective.
OWS awarded Moderna $955 million to advance its clinical trials and another $1,5 billion to manufacture and deliver 100 million vaccine doses.
Pfizer`s contract is different. Pfizer received $1,95 billion to manufacture and distribute 100 million doses, but it did not accept funding for research or development.
The Media Mob said that Trump was stealing the cred for the vaccine, but most of the Warp Speed`s budget, around $10 billion, came from congressional funds awarded in the spring, according to the HHS.
A September Bloomberg Investigation found that the Trump administration siphoned additional funds to Warp speed that were meant for another public-health program. That included $6 billion from the Strategic National Stockpile and $1 billion from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
With FDA-authorized vaccines, we will hopefully get back to normal by the summer of next year, and hopefully, COVID-19 is under control before the next flu season……
The Japanese economy shrank -7,8 percent in Q2 and that is the steepest decline ever. This was the third straight quarter of contraction which means Japan is in a deep recession amid the severe impact of the COVID-19 crisis.
Private consumption fell -8,2 percent vs -0,8 percent in Q1. Exports plummet -18,5 percent which is the most since Q1 2009. The economy collapsed 27,8 percent in the June quarter, and that is the deepest on record.
Japan was the tech darling in the 80`s. Their consumer electronics industry was once considered the strongest in the world. But now the tech giant is in a state of decline as consumption arises in countries like China, the United States, and South Korea.
However, video gaming in Japan remains a major industry. Japan became a major exporter of video games during the golden age of arcade video games, an era that began with the release of Taito`s Space Invaders in 1978 and ended around the mid-1980s.
Japan dominated the industry until Microsoft`s Xbox consoles began challenging Sony and Nintendo in the 2000s. That being said; Japan is now the world`s largest market for mobile games.
Japan`s strong economic growth ended with a big crash in the late ’80s and early ’90s. In the late 1980s, abnormalities within the Japanese economic system had fueled a speculative asset price bubble of a massive scale.
The bubble was caused by the excessive loan growth mechanism known as the «window guidance». As economist Paul Krugman explained; «Japan`s banks lent more, with less regard for quality of the borrower, than anyonw else`s. In doing so they helped inflate the bubble economy to grotesque proportions.»
Trying to deflate speculation and keep inflation in check, the Bank of Japan sharply raised inter-bank lending rates in late 1989. This sharp policy caused the bursting of the bubble and the Japanese stock market crashed.
Equity and asset prices fell, leaving overly leveraged Japanese banks and insurance companies with books full of bad debt. The financial institutions were bailed out through capital infusions from the government, loans and cheap credit from the central bank, and the ability to postpone the recognition of losses, ultimately turning them into zombie banks.
The Japanese asset price bubble was an economic bubble in Japan from 1986 to 1991 in which real estate and stock market prices were greatly inflated. In early 1992, this price bubble burst and Japan`s economy stagnated.
The bubble was characterized by the rapid acceleration of asset prices and overheated economic activity, as well as uncontrolled money supply and credit expansion. More specifically, over-confidence and speculation regarding asset and stock prices were closely associated with excessive monetary easing policy at the time.
As a result of all this mess, Japan started to «print money» like never before, and now Japan recorded a government debt equivalent to 236,60 percent of the country`s GDP in 2019. Someone has to pay for this, but who? The people of course.
The Personal Income Tax Rate in Japan stands at 55,95 percent, which means more than half of the people`s hard-earned money goes to the Government in Japan. On top of that; their interest rate is negative at -0,1 percent which means people have to pay money to the bank and not otherwise if they have money stored in the bank account.
Policymakers noted that the outlook for economic activity and prices are extremely unclear, depending on the consequences of the virus and the magnitude of their impacts on domestic and overseas economics.
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The world economy is in bad shape and it can be worse. Professor Roubini predict a Great depression, not only for 2020, but for the decade of the 2020`s. What does this crisis we`re in really mean? For someone out there it means a great opportunity. It means a great reset.
«The Great Reset» will be the theme of a unique twin summit to be convened by the World Economic Forum in January 2021. In-person and virtual dialogues will address the need for a more fair, sustainable and resilient future, and a new social contract centred on human dignity, social justice and where societal progress does not fall behind economic development.
Founder and Executive Chairman of WEF, Klaus Schwab wrote in his article called «The time for a great reset» that there is a good reason to worry: a sharp economic downturn has already begun, and we could be facing the worst depression since the 1930`s.
But, while this outcome is likely, it is not unavoidable.
Furthermore, Claus wrote this; to achieve a better outcome, the world must act jointly and swiftly to rewamp all aspects of our societies and economies, from education to social contracts and working conditions.
Every country, from the United States to China, must participate, and every industry, from oil and gas to tech, must be transformed. In short, we need a «Great Reset» of capitalism.
The crisis we`re in, together with COVID-19, will deepen and leave the world even less sustainable, less equal, and more fragile. Incremental measures and ad hoc fixes will not suffice to prevent this scenario. We must build entirely new foundations for our economic and social systems.
Managing Director at IMF, Kristalina Georgieva also had the headline «The Great Reset» a few weeks ago. My thanks to His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales and th Professor Schwab for bringing us together, she wrote in the opening.
Furthermore, she wrote this in her article: Now is the time to think of what history would say about this crisis. And now is the time for all of us to define our own role. Will historians look back and say this was the moment of a Great Reversal? Today, we see very worrying signs.
One hundred and seventy countries are going to finish this year with a smaller economy than at the start of the year, and we already project that there will be more debt, bigger deficits, and more unemployment. And there is a very high risk of more inequality and more poverty.
Unless we act.
So, what would it take for historians to look back at this crisis as the moment of Great Reset?
From the persepective of the IMF, we have seen a massive injection of fiscal stimulus to help countries deal with this crisis, and to shift gears for growth to return. It is of paramount important that this growth should lead to a greener, smarter, fairer world in the future, Kristalina Georgieva wrote.
IMF and WEF see some tremendous opportunities. Heh… It seems like a New World Order is on the way…..