Category Archives: equity

26/8/20: Q2 2020 Corporate Earnings and Revenues


Factset latest data on STOXX600 earnings for 2Q 2020 is dire: 

In basic terms, earnings figures managed to beat estimates only because analysts' expectations of earnings drop off were even more gloomy than the already dismal outrun. 

Year-on-year revenues growth was also bad:

Notably, sharper declines in earnings compared to revenues implies little gains in terms of any productivity or efficiencies during the pandemic response. 

20/8/20: All Markets are Now Monetized


While the economy burns, the stock markets are literally going bonkers. Here are the main implied volatility options:

Which are symmetric, in so far as they treat volatility as symmetrically-valued to the upside and downside. And here is another way of looking at the same concept via repricing speed, or the rate of change in actual P/E ratios of S&P500 over longer time horizons, in this case: 20 weeks running P/E ratios change:

Source of the chart is @longvieweconomics. What does the above show? We have S&P500 at an all-time high. S&P500's PE ratio (PER) is only slightly below the 2000 peak. And, we have the fastest rate of S&P over-valuation increase in history - full 85 percentage points trough to peak. Both, the fundamentals and the momentum of their deterioration are absolutely out of control. Of course, this is just the stocks. One must never mention the massive bubble blown up by the Fed in the bonds markets. 

The 20-weeks moving change in weekly yields for Aaa-rated bonds maxed out at historical high of -44.06% (remember, lower yields = higher prices) in the week of July 31st this year. Top three historically highest rates of change took place in the three weeks of July 24th-August 7 this year. Overall range of bonds repricing is in the range of 60 percentage points in the current cycle:

This is plain horrendous: there is nothing in the macro and micro fundamentals that can warrant these changes. Except for the expectation of continued monetary accommodation of the Wall Street into the infinitely long future. 

5/1/20: EU’s Latest Financial Transactions Tax Agreement

My article on the proposed EU-10 plan for the Financial Transaction Tax via The Currency:

Link: or

Key takeaways:

"Following years of EU-wide in-fighting over various FTT proposals, ten European Union member states are finally approaching a binding agreement on the subject... Ireland, The Netherlands, Luxembourg, Malta and Cyprus – the five countries known for aggressively competing for higher value-added services employers and tax optimising multinationals – are not interested."

"The rate will be set at 0.2 per cent and apply to the sales of shares in companies with market capitalisation in excess of €1 billion. This will cover also equity sales in European banks." Pension funds, trading in bonds and derivatives, and new rights issuance will be exempt.

One major fall out is that FTT "can result in higher volumes of sales at the times of markets corrections, sharper flash crashes and deeper markets sell-offs. In other words, lower short-term volatility from reduced speculation can be traded for higher longer-term volatility, and especially pronounced volatility during the crises. ... FTT is also likely to push more equities trading off-exchange, into the ‘dark pools’ and proprietary venues set up offshore, thereby further reducing pricing transparency and efficiency in the public markets."

2/7/19: Earnings and Market Valuations: Equity PEs

While P/E ratios are gamable and informationally highly restrictive, the metric is still a useful one when considering as to how expensive/cheap equity can be. Here is the latest chart via @topdowncharts showing P/E ratios based on 10 year average earnings (smoother series, but the long average is even less informationally rich than pure P/Es):

Which makes:

  1. U.S. markets overvalued in excess of 2006-2007 peaks, but less than in the blowout bubble of the era;
  2. Developed markets (ex-US) and Emerging markets relatively moderately priced.
Given the fact that U.S. equities earnings are probably the most susceptible to strategic manipulation, e,.g. shares buybacks, M&As and earnings/cash management, the U.S. markets are in heading for trouble.

12/6/19: Credit Markets vs Banks Loans: Europe vs US

Related to the earlier post on investment markets composition by intermediary (see:, here is more evidence, via @jerrycap of the massive share of intermediated debt / banks dependency in European markets:

A caveat worth noting: European data includes the UK, where equity markets and hybrid financing are both more advanced than in the Continental Europe, which suggests that the share on non-bank share of debt markets is even smaller than the 25% currently estimated.