Showing posts with label Federal Reserve. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Federal Reserve. Show all posts

Saturday, August 8, 2020

Why I bought Charles Schwab at $33.14 on Aug 7, 2020

Entry Price: $33.14

Trade Date: Aug 7, 2020

Potential Exit Points: Near the top of the Bollinger Bands at around 35.70 or wait until after the next earnings (October 19, 2020) and exit after collecting the dividend.  

Charles Schwab (NYSE: SCHW) is one of the largest brokerage firms in the country. A wave of consolidation across the industry is putting Schwab at a dominant position. In the near-term, Schwab faces pressure on its revenues due to the zero interest rate policy (ZIRP) of the Federal Reserve. The ZIRP is impacting Schwab's net interest margin, but it is having a positive impact on the number of trades executed. People everywhere are hungry for yield. Charles Schwab has also been successful in growing its asset base at a long-term growth rate of 6% due with its deft use of acquisitions to bolster assets.  The companies with the largest asset bases will survive and Schwab with $4 Trillion in assets will be one of those survivors. 

Exhibit: Schwab Growing New New Assets at around 6%

(Source: SeekingAlpha)

The consolidation in the industry will leave very few large players dominating the industry. Schwab recently acquired TD Ameritrade and Morgan Stanley acquired E*Trade. I am hoping to hold on to Schwab until after the next quarterly earnings and the dividend payment, which I anticipate would be a good one. 

From a technical analysis point of view, I am not fully convinced this is the perfect trade. The Simple Moving Averages are screaming a sell while some of the oscillators are signalling a buy. Overall the technical indicators are flashing a sell signal.  

Exhibit: Charles Schwab Technical Indicators - August 8, 2020 

(Source: Tradingview

The stock was trading near the lower price range of its Bollinger Bands and had a double bottom. That, along with the fundamentals, is what prompted me to buy the shares. 

Exhibit: Charles Schwab's Double Bottom

(Source: Tradingview

(Disclosure: I own Charles Schwab)


Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Warren Buffett Bought a Gas Pipeline and an U.S. Judge may have made it a Winning Investment

    Since March, 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic drove the U.S. and the globe into a recession and tanked markets worldwide, there has been speculation about what Warren Buffet would be buying given the bargains. In March the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) dropped from an all-time high of 29,551 to 18,591. Many stock watchers and TV pundits speculated that this is the time when Warren Buffett would see value in stocks and put his company's sizeable cash to work.

Exhibit: Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) One-Year Performance

(Source: Google Finance)

    It has now become clear that Warren Buffett and his partner Charlie Munger were looking to strike a few deals at bargain prices, but the intervention by the U.S. Federal Reserve in March made it very easy for companies in all sorts of fiscal shape could easily raise billions of dollars.
    Finally in July 2020 Warren and Charlie did strike a deal. They invested $10 billion in buying the natural gas pipeline assets of Dominion Energy. When almost every investor is shying away from investing in fossil fuel assets, Berkshire Hathaway sees value in it. It's going to take a long time for the world to move away from fossil fuels.
    The past week has produced some stark headlines about the energy business. The Financial Times reported that BP was marking down the value of its oil and natural gas assets by $17.5 billion. Under the shadows of the stress that the oil business is in, Berkshire Hathaway makes a contrarian bet. Then came another headline, this time from a Federal District court. The court ruled that work on the Dakota Access Pipeline will have to stop until a comprehensive environmental review is completed.
    Even before this decision, building anything related to the oil and gas industry in the U.S was an herculean task. This decision makes it harder. It is now assured that the work on this pipeline will not proceed until after the U.S. election. If Joe Biden is elected president then this pipeline may never get built.  So, any oil and gas asset already in existence in the U.S. have just been elevated in value. This deal by Berkshire Hathaway has the potential to offer profitable returns for the company. 

Disclosure: I own shares in Berkshire Hathaway and BP.       

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

How did the U.S. Markets have the Best Quarter in Decades?

    The quarter that ended on Tuesday, June 30th was the best quarter for the market in two decades. How did the U.S. stock market end with such a statistic in the midst of a global pandemic and record unemployment?
    On February 12th, 2020, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) had hit an all-time high of 29,551. But by February 21st, 2020, the fear that the COVID-19 virus is going to bring life to a standstill in the U.S was taking hold in the market. The markets were in free-fall from around that time until March 23, 2020. On this date the Dow Jones Industrial Average was at 18,591. It was a drop of about 37% from the top.
                             Exhibit: Dow Jones Industrial Average hit bottom on March 23, 2020
                                            (Source: Google Finance)
    March 23 would end-up being a monumental date for the country as a whole and a one for the history books. This was the date on which the Federal Reserve made an announcement that they are "committed to using its full range of tools to support households, businesses, and the U.S. economy overall in this challenging time."
    This announcement was interpreted by the markets that the U.S. Federal Reserve is going to provide a backstop to the losses mounting across companies of all different sizes. The demand for products and services provided by airlines, restaurants, cruises, and malls vanished overnight. Most of these companies did not have a plan or funds in place for such a dramatic drop-off in demand. The Federal Reserve did not want to see problems in one sector of the economy, mainly in discretionary spending, spillover into other sectors. For example, when fear of COVID-19 took over and many states instituted lock downs or quarantine orders, malls and restaurants were forced to close their doors. That in turn led to these companies not generating any revenues that could be used to pay their bills, such as paying their rent or their suppliers. This cascading effect would lead to companies, cities, and states all across the U.S. laying off millions of people and plunging the U.S. into another great depression
    The Federal Reserve started buying high-quality assets in the open market along with making billions of dollars of loans available to companies of all sizes. Even though millions of people still lost their jobs, an argument could be made that this move by the Federal Reserve did prevent a great catastrophe. Without the bold intervention of the Federal Reserve, a worldwide health crisis could have easily grown exponentially larger when a worldwide economic crisis is unleashed at the same time.
    So, it turns out March 23 was the day the U.S. markets hits bottom. An epic stock market rally started that day and by June 30, 2020, the Dow Jones Industrial Average had gained about 38% from its bottom of 18,591. The DJIA stood at 25,812 on June 30, 2020.             

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