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What You missed LAST Week    

                                                 FEDHEADS GALORE, I-BANK EVENTS & WARNING SEASON

January 07—11, 2019 We thought the Joint AEA/ASSA reached a new high with all the Federal Reserve Bank Presidents speaking but this week will take the cake, especially Wednesday, where I’ve added some asterisks, and noted the speakers will be augmented, besides, by the FOMC Dec 18—19th Meeting Minutes, to be released that day. Thursday is another day of Fed-packed speakers, while Friday promises George, one of the few who didn’t speak at AEA. Meantime, a US Delegation is in Beijing for high-level trade talks that, we hope, don’t end like Trump’s bipartisan talks on the border wall, which even he admitted haven’t made progress. There’s also some confusion about which government data will be released and which will be deferred because of the partial federal government shut-down.

US Nov Consumer Credit (3pm et), out Tuesday, will upset the applecart if growth in revolving debt didn’t grow as much as the Street expects. If consumers waited to charge up a storm until Dec, then some will worry about the bare number, without context—especially since Thanksgiving week and Black Friday are such big days for consumers to spend. Others will worry that banks are trimming the sails of credit card debt, causing shrinkage. Let’s remember the surveys that claimed retail sales rose +5.1% in Dec, so that’s when the most credit (debt) was probably added.
I’d like to get excited about Thursday’s US Dec. Chain Store Sales but few retailers still report those, and a few, like Tiffany, have said they’ll report Holiday Sales, but not this week. Also notable, those FOMC Minutes of the Dec. meeting, out Wednesday because we’ll get more insight into just when the Fed started changing its tune about this year’s interest rate hikes. I suspect 2 more weeks of stiff equity selling into year’s end was what flipped the switch for Powell & Co. US Dec. CPI, out Friday, is likely to dissuade anyone who fears inflation—especially since crude followed equities down, into year end.

CES (Consumer Electronics Show) and NAIAS (North American Int’l Auto Show) are the top Industry events of the week, both likely to be crawling with analysts and execs, both promising 2 days of press conferences before the events, "officially," open. Both include a day for "industryonly." We don’t know why RayJay’s calendar states it is hosting meetings at ICR Conference on Jan. 7th & 8th, since the public company conference doesn’t start until the 13th, and the private company section until the 16th. Was it a place holder based on year ago information? We have no idea but there it is, on RayJay’s 2019 calendar, starting the 7th. Maybe we’re wrong and Raymond James has set up meetings with corporates presenting, for the week prior to the conference opening. It’s just not the way it usually occurs, and plenty of other I-banks are sponsors, all of them hosting meetings during the ICR Conference, mostly the 14th—16th, rather than a week prior. On the corporate side, the big Kahuna of I-bank events is JPMorgan’s Annual Healthcare Conference, in San Francisco. There are at least a half dozen Healthcare events scheduled to coincide, the most coveted by Leerink Partners. JPM can also boast of it’s Tech Forum, @ CES, and Citi of its TMT @ CES, while Goldman Sach’s Energy Conference is a headliner, too, especially for its Miami location, just as another deep freeze is supposed to sweep from the West Coast to the East.

If the National Banks of Eastern European Countries are an interest, then UniCredit has the Emerging Europe Winter Conference designed for you. In Kitzbuhel Austria, it’s hosting officials from the National Banks of Hungary, Romania, Poland, Czech Republic, Russia, and Turkey, plus the FinMins from those countries and more.

On the other side of the globe, Citi is hosting a 7-day Nationwide (China) Luxury & NEV {sic} Dealership Channel check that starts in Shanghai on the 11th, moves to Nanjing/Suzhou/Wuxi on the 12th, then Beijing on the 18th, Tianjin on the 19th, Shenzhen on the 26th, and Shenyang from 02/01—02, in Mandarin, only. Deep dive into this week? On the 11th Citi will be visiting dealers of BMW, Benz (Citi’s terminology, now ours), Audi, GWM (Wey), Geely (Lynk&Co), BYD, Hyundai. I’d protest that the hi-level "ministerial-level" trade talks will be much more significant for sentiment, at a time Trump really needs a win, and China needs to boost its economy, suffering from US Companies limiting the orders placed there. For China, the biggest risk is apparel & shoe companies finding alternate manufacturing in Vietnam, Cambodia, South Korea, Latin America, and elsewhere, and permanently moving some of their production away from China. The longer the trade stalemate endures, the more companies will diversify their production away from China—never to return.

I’d also tune into the American Farm Bureau Federation Convention and IDEAg Trade Show, starting Friday, because those were some of Trump’s biggest supporters, his big idea to spend $12B on grants to farmers, to keep their support, as China cut back on orders of soybeans and other farm products. I’d be surprised if Farmers could be bought for so little, and question why no opponents are questioning the legality of the White House farmer bail-out, whe3n other industries aren’t getting the same soothing.

Earnings from KB Home & Lennar will be watched carefully, though Constellation Brands (STZ) is reporting a quarter that ends before the bulk of holiday alcohol & wine sales kick into high gear but, still, with beer often a working man’s drink and employment at some of the highest levels in decades, we can’t say there’s nothing to be learned from STZ’s report. Likewise, Synnex (SNX) is an Enterprise supplier of technology and integration services, so one to watch, especially since last quarter it reported its first disappointment in years.

I’d also keep a sharp eye on England and the EU, since the Brexit deal Prime Minister May negotiated seems less likely to squeak through Parliament. In fact, there’s more talk, of late, of the current status being extended for a period of time while negotiations continue. Many in the EU are dead set against such a result, and I sure don’t want that to happen because I’m eager to buy British stocks, selectively, into the March 29th Brexit date. For instance, Tata Motors is almost 1/3 of its 52 week high, while oil is so soft, the foreign E&P stocks are suffering more than, say, Chevron, while Royal Dutch Shell "B" shares are design, specifically, for US investors, who won’t have UK taxes taken out of B share dividends, never to be reclaimed again, without great expense.

How this week turns out could well depend on Earnings Warnings—how many as well as how big the miss. None may be as damaging as Apple’s but enough of them would certainly do more widespread damage. Stay safe out there—I’m not at all certain that the selling is over—and can’t readily say the opposite with any confidence, either. The charting program I’ve long used suddenly won’t accept any dates past December 31, 2018. 2019 data comes in but isn’t being integrated into my charts. That means I need to start fresh, with a new program, this week, and pray it won’t be as painful as some new programs were to use. I still have nightmares of my dad upstairs, on hold for tech support, back when "small" business computers took up an entire room that required their own punch cards and air conditioners. Now that’s a nightmare!

ECONOMIC: (Highlights, only, below. Full International Economic Calendar here)
SUNDAY, 01/06
US Delegation leaves for trade talks with China in Beijing
    OVERNIGHT into US Mon a.m..et
        China Nov Fx Reserves & Imports
        German Nov Factory Orders & Retail Sales
        Eurozone Sentix Jan Investor Confidence & Nov Retail Sales

MONDAY, 01/07
US - China Trade Talks
—1st in-person talks since 12/01/18 Vice Ministerial-level talks thru the 8th (Beijing)
US Nov Retail & Wholesale Inventories
US Nov (F) Durable Goods Orders/Shipments
US ISM non-Manufacturing Index
Fed’s Bostic
fireside chat @ Rotary Club of Atlanta
US Treasury Auctions $39B 3-, & $36B 6-month Bills (11am)
TD Ameritrade IMXX (12:30pm et)
    OVERNIGHT into US Tues a.m. et
        Japan Dec Nikkei Services & Composite PMI & Dec Vehicle Sales
        German Industrial Production, Markit Dec Construction PMI
        UK Halifax Dec House Price Index, New Car Registrations

NFIB Small Business Optimism Index
(6am et)
Fed’s Nov JOLTS (Job Openings, Turnover Quits)
US Treasury Auctions $38B 3-year Notes (1pm et)
US Nov Consumer Credit (3pm et Debt, really)
    OVERNIGHT into US Wed. a.m. et
        Italy Nov Unemployment Report
        Eurozone Nov Unemployment Rate
        UK NIESR GDP Estimate

MBA weekly Mortgage/Refinance Apps
*Fed’s Bostic on Eco Outlook @ Chattanooga Chamber of Commerce (8:20am et)
*Fed’s Evans on Eco Conditions & Monetary Policy @ Discover Financial Services (DFS) Meeting (9am et)
*BoE Gov Carney online Q&A on "Let’s Decide the Future of Money"
*BoC (Canada) MPC Interest Rate Announcement + Monetary Policy Report
*BoC Gov Poloz & Depty Wilkins post-Meeting Press Conference
EIA weekly Petroleum/Gasoline/Distillates Stats (10:30am et)
*Fed’s Rosengren on Eco Outlook @ Boston Economic Club (11:30am et)
*FOMC Minutes of Dec 18—19, 2018 Meeting Released [rates were raised] (2pm et)
    OVERNIGHT into US Thurs. a.m. et
        China Dec Money Supply, New Yuan Loans & Aggregate Financing
        UK BRC Dec Like-for-Like Sales & RICS Dec House Price Balance
        China Dec PPI & CPI, Industrial Production
        ECB Publishes Account of Dec Monetary Policy Meeting

US weekly Jobless Claims
Fed’s Barkin speaks to Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce (8:35 am et)
US Dec Chain Store Sales (those few who still release monthly)
Brookings Institution ’10 years later: Lessons from the 2008—09 financial crisis’ w/speakers that include Peter Orszag, Carmen Reinhart, Larry Summers, and more (9am et)
US Dec. Wholesale Trade (10am et)
EIA weekly Natural Gas Report (w/e 01/04/19 10:30am et)
Fed’s Bullard on Eco & Monetary Policy @ Little Rock Chamber of Commerce (12:30pm et)
Fed’s Evans on current Eco Conditions & Monetary {Policy @ Milwaukee Business Journal Economic Forecast Event (1pm)
US Treasury Auctions $16B reopened 30-year Bonds (1pm et)
Fed’s weekly Balance Sheet & US Money Supply (4:30pm et)
Fed’s V. Chair Clarida speaks @ Money Marketeers of NY (5:30pm est)
    OVERNIGHT into US Fri a.m. et:
        French MPC de Galhau on European Economic Prospects in 2019
        Japan Nov Current Account Balance, Trade Balance, Nov Household Spending
        China Dec Foreign Direct Investment
        UK Nov Trade Balance, Industrial + Manufacturing Production, Construction Output, Nov GDP

FRIDAY, 01/11
, Real Avg Weekly Earnings (8:30am et)
Baker-Hughes weekly US/North American Rig Count (1pm et)
WASDE Report (Delayed because of partial gov’t shutdown?)
Fed’s George on Eco & Monetary Policy before The Central Exchange
US Treasury Budget Released (2pm et w/800K workers not being paid, for now)

         WEEKS AHEAD: Jan 21, 2019 Martin Luther King Jr Holiday—US Markets Closed
                                      01/23    BoJ MPC Meets
                                      01/24    ECB MPC Meets
                                                  Norges MPC Meets
                                      01/29     FOMC 2-day Meeting Starts
                                      01/30     FOMC Meeting Statement & Powell Press Conference

EARNINGS: (SemiLEDS [LEDS], listed for Tuesday, last reported 11/14/18, and provides only 2 days notice for its earnings release. We no longer separate pre-market from after market release times. Eps. Delta Airlines [DAL] makes it incredibly difficult to even navigate to its Investor Relations website, let alone learn when it reports. It provided a Dec 2018 operational update on 01/03/2019 and didn’t specify the earnings release date, while it usually provides a week’s notice.)

MONDAY, 01/07: CMC





East/West Biotech CEO Conference (San Francisco CA)
AEA American Economic & Allied Social Sciences Ass’ns Jt Mtg (Atlanta GA)
Philly Nat’l Candy, Gift & Gourmet Show (Philadelphia PA thru 7th)
DAIWA P.U.R.E. Energy (Power, Utes, Renewables, Environmental; Hong Kong thru 7th)
Wizard World/ComicCon (New Orleans LA)

CES Unveiled--Day #2 of Press Conferences
(Las Vegas NV thru 7th)
SEMICON ISS: Industry Strategy Symposium (Half Moon Bay CA thru 9th)
Chardon Capital Healthcare Networking Night (San Francisco)
Affiliate Summit West (Las Vegas thru 8th)
AAS 233rd Astronomical Society (Seattle WA thru 10th)
UMA Motorcoach Expo (Ft Lauderdale FL thru 10th)
Women’s Fashion Mart (NY thru 8th)
Golden Globes Award Show (NBC –TV 7pm [CMCSA])

MONDAY, 01/07
JPMorgan 37th Annual Healthcare Conference (San Francisco thru 10th)
Leerink events during JPM Healthcare Conference (San Francisco thru 10th)
JPMorgan 17th Tech Forum @ CES (Las Vegas thru 9th)
Raymond James Meetings @ICR Conference (Orlando FL thru 8th)
Nomura @ CES Forum 2019 (Las Vegas thru 9th)
Digital Hollywood @ CES (Las Vegas thru 11th)
EBD Group 10th Annual Biotech Showcase (269 presenters; San Francisco thru 9th)
Alliance for Regenerative Medicine Cell & Gene Therapies State of the Art Industry Briefing (San Francisco)
FloCon 2019 Carnegie Mellon Univ Software Engineering Institute (New Orleans thru 10th)
Solebury Trout Annual 1x1 Management Access Event (San Francisco thru 10th)
Morgan Stanley China New Economy Summit (Beijing China thru 9th)
SEB Nordic Summit (Copenhagen Denmark thru 9th)
Citrix (CTXS) Summit (Orlando FL thru 9th)
NCAA National Football Championship, Undefeated Alabama meets Undefeated Clemson—their 3rd Championship meeting in 4 years, presented by AT&T [T] 8pm on ESPN [DIS] @ Levi’s Stadium (Santa Clara CA)

Goldman Sachs Global Energy Conference (Miami FL thru 9th)
Barclays Chemical Experts Conference (NY)
Jefferies Technology & Telecom Real Estate Summit (NY)
Credit Suisse Aircraft :Leasing Conference (NY)
CES (Las Vegas thru 11th)
Citi Global TMT West Conference @ CES (Las Vegas thru 9th)
SAE Connect2Car CES Symposium (Las Vegas)
17th Annual Commercial Real Estate Forecast Conference (Chicago IL)
NDIA Defense Systems Procurement Division Meeting (D.C.)
Kids @Play Summit @ CES (Las Vegas thru 11th)
Feed & Grain LIVE (Altoona IA thru 10th)
RBC Capital Canadian Bank CEO Conference (Toronto ON Canada)
Citi European Insurance Speed Dating Conference (London)
JPMorgan ASEAN Banks 1x1 Forum (Singapore thru 9th)
PoolCorp (POOL) Retail Summit (Grapevine TX thru 9th)

Barclays Chemical Experts Conference (Boston)
CJS Securities 19th Annual New Ideas for the New Year (NY)
IDC Briefing @ CES (Las Vegas)
Credit Suisse Annual Conservation Finance Investor Conference (NY)
Public Funds Summit (Scottsdale AZ thru 11th)
Renewable Energy Buyers Summit (Scottsdale thru 11th)
AltaCorp & ATB 7th Annual Energy, Agriculture & Diversified Conference (Toronto)
ICSC Red River States Conference/Dealmaking (Ft Worth TX thru 11th)
Society for Technology in Anesthesia Annual (Scottsdale AZ thru 12th)
Citi European Utilities & Infrastructure Conference (London thru 10th)
RBC Capital Global Macro New Year Preview (Toronto)
UniCredit Emerging Europe Winter Conference (Kitzbuhel Austria thru 11th)

Raymond James Deer Valley Telecom Summit (Park City UT thru 11th_
Platt’s 17th Annual Natural Gas Storage Outlook (Houston TX thru 11th)
21st Annual Beef Industry Convention (London, ON Canada thru 12th)
Correctional Association Annual (New Orleans LA thru 15th)
Surf Expo (Orlando thru 12th)
ISE’s Int’l Sportmen’s Expo (Denver CO thru 13th)
Bass & Salt Water Fishing Expo (Raleigh NC thru 13th)
RBC Capital US Sector Specialist New Year Preview (Toronto)
Oddo BHF Forum (Lyon FR thru 11th)
Baader Helvea Swiss Equities Conference (Bad Ragaz Suisse thru 11th)
Credit Suisse Greater China Technology & Internet Conference (Hong Kong thru 11th)
Citi Hong Kong & China Corporate Consumer Themed Day (Hong Kong)
Citi A-Share Explorer Day (Shenzhen China)
Auto Parts Autorama (Cincinnati OH thru 13th)
Marks & Spencer 2018 Holiday Sales Update (London)
Microsoft (MSFT) Tech Summit (Toronto thru 11th)

FRIDAY, 01/11
Int’l Conference on Consumer Electronics (ICCE) @ CES (Las Vegas thru 13th)
Centennial American Farm Bureau Federation Convention & IDEAg Trade Show (New Orleans thru 16th)
Annual ASH (Hematology) Review (San Francisco thru 12th)
RBC Capital Canadian Industrials New Year Preview (Toronto)
Citi launches its 7 non-consecutive day China New Car Dealer Tour (Shanghai & more cities thru 02/02)
General Motors (GM) Investor Day at NAIAS (Detroit <I)
Takeda Pharmaceuticals (TAK) NDA 021-856 ULORIC Tabs post-marketing safety trial for CV safety of febuxostat before FDA
MOVIES OPENING: "A Dog’s Way Home," take a box of Kleenex with you, since the story of a dog traveling 400 miles to get back home is a tear jerker with Bryce Dallas Howard, Ashley Judd, Edward James Olmos, from Columbia Pictures Corp (SNE) & Bona Film Group. "Replicas," with Keanu Reeves, Emily Alyn Lind, Alice Eve, about a scientist obsessed with bringing back family members who died in a traffic accident. Directed by Jeffrey Nachmanoff from a screenplay written by Chat St. John, from a story by Stephen Hamel, distributed by Entertainment Studios Motion
Pictures (Byron Allen’s company), first shown at the Night Visions Int’l Film Festival in Finland. "The Aspern Papers," with Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Vanessa Redgrave, Joely Richardson, Lois Robbins, filmed in Venice, Italy, at whose film festival it premiered in August 2018. Based on Henry James’ eponymous novel, with James Ivory executive producing, ‘Papers’ is being distributed in the US & Canada by Cohen Media, which is new to us. "Sgt. Will Gardner," about a troubled Iraq War veteran, suffering traumatic brain injury (TBI), setting out on a motorcycle to cross the country, in hopes of reuniting with his son. Stars Dermot Mulroney, Elisabeth Rohm, Robert Patrick, Lilly Rabe, Gary Sinise, written & directed by Max Martini, with Cinedigm snagging the distribution deal. Profits will go to Higher Ground, Warriors Heart, and Gary Sinise Foundation, all of which support veterans suffering from TBI, PTSD, and veteran homelessness. "The Upside," with Nicole Kidman, Kevin Hart (right there, a strange combo), Bryan Cranston, Julianna Margulies, in --a look at a wealthy quadriplegic and the unemployed man with a criminal record hired to help him but it’s from 2017, first opening today. Perhaps because it’s from the Weinstein Company?

NAIAS North American Int’l Auto Show (Detroit MI thru 27th)
Plant & Animal Genome XXVI (San Diego CA thru 16th)
PIA/GATF Color Management Conference (San Diego thru 15th)
Interpreting Clinical Data: Highlights from No. Am. ASH 2018 (D.C.thru 13th)

Sandi Lynne 2019 Nothing contained in this commentary should be construed as a recommendation to buy or sell any security. The opinions expressed are the author’s, alone, and should be just one factor in complete due diligence.  

                                                                           Enjoy last week's highlights. I'm retired, now, and prepare what I like, when I want,

  Sandi Lynne

       (c) 1998--2018 Sandi Lynne