7th Heaven

It was one of those highly anticipated Apple events last evening, the blogosphere and the guess-a-sphere did get a few things right. Like the no more headphone jack on the iPhone. She gone. The new iPhone 7 is water resistant, the display is clearer and has more colours, the camera looks more awesome (both back and front), great new zoom feature, there are a couple more colours to choose from.”


To market to market to buy a fat pig Stocks sank locally by the close, a pretty broad based sell off from industrials to financials. The Rand was stronger as a result of the weaker Dollar, recent data, very recent as in the last week, has suggested that the Fed will not likely raise rates in September. There is one part of me that wishes the Fed just raised rates and then watched the outcome, which probably isn’t or wouldn’t be that bad. When it happens, it will happen. That is the way that I view it, and there is absolutely nothing that anyone can do about it. You can preempt and position accordingly, it is not going to matter what you think. In the same way from your couch on what your opinion of the Springbok centre pairing is, and how often they should pass the ball. They don’t care people, they really don’t care.

Stocks across the ocean in the US closed the session mixed, Apple (see below) boosted the nerds of NASDAQ a touch, that index closed in the green, up 0.15 percent by the close. Facebook also clocked a new all time high! The S&P 500 closed a smidgen lower, 0.01 percent lower. Blue chips, the Dow Jones Industrial average closed down 0.06 percent. See the Apple piece below, that of course was by far and away the most exciting and anticipated event of the day!


Company corner

It was one of those highly anticipated Apple events last evening, the blogosphere and the guess-a-sphere did get a few things right. Like the no more headphone jack on the iPhone. She gone. The new iPhone 7 is water resistant, the display is clearer and has more colours, the camera looks more awesome (both back and front), great new zoom feature, there are a couple more colours to choose from, the fingerprint sensor has been built into the new home button, the battery is better, the new operating system (iOS 10 now!) looks to win iPhone users back to iMessage, with Siri, search and maps more powerful. That operating system is available next week. They have sold over 1 billion phones, it is the most successful consumer product of all time.

With the lack of a headset jack comes funny looking earphones that charge in a box, they are called AirPods. They look kind of funny, I am very sure that they have been tested like crazy to make sure they don’t fall out. That seems to be the biggest problem that the Twittersphere has with the new product, and they haven’t even tried them on. The voice of Jony Ive tells you about the new product. The new chip, the Siri connection, no more needing bluetooth, goodbye to that. Beats, which Apple owns, also announced the release of three different products too, all using the new W1 chip, which looks pretty cool – Got no strings.

The intro to the special event was amazing. Pharrell Williams and James Corden singing “Sweet Home Alabama” with Apple CEO Time Cook, that was really cool. More on the Music subscription, Apple are at 17 million subscribers, I am one of them. I love the music streaming service, all that I need from a music perspective is there. I haven’t bought music from Apple in a while, yet I listen to more music than before. There was stuff about iWork in the keynote, there was stuff about Super Mario coming to the iPhone, that part was presented by the creator of one of the most iconic games of all time, Shigeru Miyamoto. And the difference is that you can engage with a single hand, whilst holding on to the strap on the subway, eating a burger or apple, said Miyamoto. The crowd seemed to like that.

The biggest reset, alongside the phone, was undoubtably the refresh to the watch. The new operating system, the fact that you no longer need your phone nearby (the built in GPS), new faces and activity sharing. Breath (manage stress), a safety feature to get to 911 or the equivalent (and sending your loved ones where you are), a get up and go notification. Gaming apps, news apps and so on, Pokemon Go was a big hit, that comes to the watch. Pokemon Go has been downloaded 500 million times around the world, gamers have walked 4.6 billion kms since the launch. Amazing, not so? I ain’t ever going to be a Pokemon Go person, sorry, not interested. OK, let us agree that you should give it a go, perhaps during the December break. It is ultimately about getting gamers outdoors and enjoying nature, art works places and historical museums.

The new watch has been completely reengineered. Swim proof means triathletes and swimmers, surfers and co can keep the watch on. They redesigned the speaker system, it ejects water if there is any at the end of the workout. Wow. They built a stroke simulator to test the watch underwater for an age, they also tested it with an open water and pool swim. Cool. Completely water resistant. Swimmers finally get what they want! Graphics better, watch faster. Night sky looks like a cool app, check outside and identify the stars. There is a collaboration with Nike, and more excitingly, a built in GPS. Which means no more carrying your phone with you. Another huge, huge leap forward. The view ranger hike app, using the built in GPS is also pretty amazing. All in all, the refresh has got people excited about the product. The watch also comes in a ceramic finish, along with aluminium and stainless steel. Apple Watch Nike Plus is another watch designed with runners in mind. The Just Do It Sunday means you are part of a global movement, people who run Sunday are apparently more active during the week.

The stock popped by the close, up point six of a percent. I think that the refresh was about expected, the watch is a huge plus. I suspect that those with the version 1 (like me) would be happy that there are advancements, and perhaps the way to view the watch is the same way to view the phone, it comes with a refresh. We maintain our long term buy rating on the company, they continue to evolve on the existing devices and bring you something new. I think that this is a great release of products, upgrades and new ones. The stock looks cheap. There is plenty of road ahead.


Whoa, why did Steinhoff get slammed yesterday, were the first Euro reported results that bad? The company has sold off aggressively from their recent highs in the mid nineties to the low eighties and that is in Rands of course. Give us chance to have a proper read through and analyse in full, so that we don’t miss anything. There were results that were coupled with the announcement that the Poundland transaction is happening, the leg down in the share price, later in the day could be related to that news. Either way, it is never encouraging when one of your stocks that you own is softer after results, that means that the expectations that the collective had have been missed at some level. We never fret about share price weakness in a solid business, its always represents a good opportunity.


Another stock that is taking heat this morning is Aspen Pharmacare. They released a trading statement yesterday afternoon late, after market closed. The company is taking a 870 million Rand hit on the Venezuelan Bolivar having devalued so much. That country is broken. The bus driver president, hand picked by Hugo Chavez, has inherited dumb economic policies that have driven the country off a cliff. Herewith the table that lays out the comparable and what they are likely to be:

The results are likely to be on the 14th of September, we will do a detailed look when those numbers hit the screens. Not good. There is little that you can do about dumb economic policies, there is something that you can do about the territories that you operate in, perhaps there will be a little more clarity on that, when we get there. The stock is down nearly ten percent as a result of this Venezuelan turd.


Linkfest, lap it up

With markets going sideways, hyper market participants can be seen getting – Amenomania

Byron found this great read on Amazon. The blog breaks down why the Amazon share price has been on fire recently – Amazon Stock in 5 Charts

Asperger’s syndrome (AS) is much more prevalent in males than females (4-6 times higher) and around 68 million people globally have this syndrome. There is a huge plus for people who are autistic and who have AS – Microsoft Wants Autistic Coders. Can It Find Them And Keep Them?

This is a superb advert about lamb, from Australia titled Spring Lamb 2016 | You Never Lamb Alone, that celebrates diversity.


Home again, home again, jiggety-jog. There is an ECB meeting today, apparently that is wildly important. What can Mario Draghi do is the question being asked. I am sure there is lots that he can and will do. Whether or not you and I want to “trade” around this event, that is a no go. Bill Ackman bought a big slug of Chipotle, the Mexican food chain. Some people think he has overpaid for this stake. Time of course will tell.


Sent to you by Sasha, Byron and Michael on behalf of team Vestact.

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