😒 Tesla isn't all that

Have a break, Nestlé | Southwest keeps its cool |

Hi Reader, here's what you need to know for April 23rd in 3:05 minutes.

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Today's big stories

  1. Nestlé’s quarterly sales beat expectations, as the consumer goods giant benefited from both homebound customers and reopened restaurants
  2. Tesla, NIO, and the other young upstarts won't be the only winners in the electric vehicle revolution – Read Now
  3. Southwest Airlines posted better-than-expected earnings, and it might even stop losing money by June

Sweet Spot

Sweet Spot

What’s Going On Here?

Nestlé announced better-than-expected first-quarter sales on Thursday, as the world’s gradual economic recovery finally gave the Swiss giant the break it’s been craving.

What Does This Mean?

Get yourself a consumer goods company that can do both: the household snacks that stuck-at-home folks needed to endure their fifteenth lockdown in a row, and the supplies that Asian bars, restaurants, and shops needed to fling their doors open once again. That one-two punch drove Nestlé’s underlying sales – i.e. disregarding currency swings and new mergers and acquisitions – almost 8% higher than the same time last year. That was more than twice the growth analysts were expecting, and investors were cool with it: they sent Nestlé’s stock 3% higher.

Why Should I Care?

For markets: Extravagance is the new in-travagance.
Nestlé’s uptick in sales is just one of several signs that a consumer spending boom is in full swing. Here’s another one: professional investors have been noticing a trend toward more upscale products as shoppers spend the cash they’ve been saving over the last year, particularly among things like cosmetics, spirits, and clothing. Case in point: luxury brand Hermès and spirits firm Pernod Ricard reported an uplift in sales on Thursday.

The bigger picture: Chinese customers are spending big. 
Strong results aren’t the only thing Nestlé, Hermès, and Pernod Ricard have in common: all three seriously benefited from robust consumer spending in China (tweet this). That’ll happen when Chinese consumers are given the freedom to shop as they please – a luxury that still isn’t being afforded to many Europeans and Americans. Companies that aren’t big in China, then, might be feeling a pang of regret. Or regrette, in Renault’s case: the French carmaker reported worse-than-expected earnings on Thursday, even as other carmakers like BMW and Daimler – both of which have big businesses in China – beat expectations.

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2. Analyst Take

Tesla Just Can’t Shake The Classic Carmakers

What’s Going On Here?

Every automaker is in agreement: the future of the car is electric.

That might have something to do with why pure-play EV-makers – think Tesla, NIO, and Fisker – have outperformed the likes of Renault and Ford over the last five years.

Not just outperformed them, in fact: they’ve surged more than 1,500%, while the legacy carmakers have gained just 32%.

So you’d be forgiven for thinking that these EV-native upstarts have already made too much headway over their predecessors for them to catch up.

But there’s a very good reason analysts are much more optimistic about the prospects for incumbents’ shares than they are on the limelight-hogging newbies.

That’s today’s Insight: why you might be able to pick up some stock market bargains if you’re willing to go against the “Tesla takes all” narrative.

Read or listen to the Insight here

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Adventure Capital

Adventure Capital

What’s Going On Here?

Southwest Airlines posted better-than-expected earnings on Thursday, and the world’s biggest budget carrier is confident it’ll be going places come June.

What Does This Mean?

Now that the vaccine rollout is well underway, it’s only a matter of time before Americans get back to doing what they do best: filling their Instagrams with posts of them leaning against faraway monuments. Southwest Airlines announced that domestic leisure travel bookings are on the rise, not to mention that the number of flights will look much the same in June 2021 as it did in June 2019. Incidentally, June’s also when the airline is expecting to stop burning through cash and finally break even again. Add to that a smaller-than-expected loss last quarter, and it’s easy to understand why investors initially sent its shares 3% higher.

Why Should I Care?

For markets: Budget airlines could take off quicker than big carriers.
American Airlines posted strong results on Thursday too, which might’ve come as a relief after bigger-than-expected losses at industry-leaders United Airlines and Delta Airlines earlier this month. But while all three big carriers sound more upbeat about the future, it might be budget airlines like Southwest – with a business model focused on frugality, domestic flights, and leisure travel – that lead the aviation industry’s post-pandemic recovery.

The bigger picture: European airlines don’t have so much to look forward to.
According to fresh analysis by one major airline organization, a slower-than-expected global inoculation is holding back international travel. It reckons the delay will cost airlines $10 billion more than predicted, putting the industry at risk of a $48 billion shortfall this year. Still, US airlines stand to come out of it the best: the country’s rapid vaccination rollout and major domestic market means they’re expected to have the smallest losses relative to sales – while Europe’s fumbled efforts will put its airlines at the bottom of the pack.

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💬 Quote of the day

“I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.”

– Gerry Spence (a semi-retired American trial lawyer)
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📚 What we're reading

  • Put your money to work (Yieldstreet)*
  • Psychedelic intellectual property (Vice)
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🤖 The future is now

Imagine, if you can, the year 2050: you buy a pizza, pay for it with bitcoin, and take it from a delivery guy with a hoverbike. Except, you don’t need to wait till 2050: join Cryptogal founder Andrew Doucette for How To Live Off Cryptocurrency, and find out how that’s actually a possibility today. The hoverbike might be a pretty janky moped, but you get what we’re saying.

🚀 Space: The Final Investment Frontier: 6pm UK time, April 27th
💰 Crowdfunding Club: 1pm NYC time, April 28th
🌏 How To Live Off Cryptocurrency: 3.30pm NYC time, April 28th
🛢 The Energy Sector’s New Direction: 4pm UK time, April 29th
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🤒 The Financial Health Check: 4pm UK time, May 6th
☄️ The Future Of Commodities: 6pm UK time, May 12th
💪 Building A Circular Economy: 5pm UK time, May 25th
🇨🇳 The Surge In China’s Tech Scene: 5pm UK time, June 1st

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