Weekly Thoughts 01 March 2013

On Wednesday this week I spent a couple of hours in the morning listening to asset managers from Investec and then again in the afternoon a couple of hours listening to the same sort of clever people from Coronation.  With both sessions being in Durban, I leave my town at 5am – I have traffic queuing issues – and I’m at the beachfront by 6am.  I proceeded to have a paddle on the sea and then a run along the beach.  The world looks so much different from out at sea.  It forces one into reflection.

I thought I would mention a few interesting points that I wrote down during the sessions.  They are interesting changes or trends or developments around the world.  The asset managers will seek to buy shares of companies that are to benefit from these changing markets.  As they will do in any changing situation.

  • There are 10 000 people a day in the USA turning 65 years old.
  • The sale of adult diapers in Japan now exceeds that for children.
  • Nintendo – that electronic gaming device / thing / company – has 12 billion dollars in the bank.  As previously said: it is not the companies of the world that are in trouble, it is the governments… and maybe some banks.
  • Dutch Bank SNS Reaal has recently collapsed.
  • Global equities are our preferred asset class, with valuations far more attractive than SA equities.
  • We like Russian food retailers.
  • There are 290 BMW dealers in China, with 60 new dealerships being added per year.  There are 59 in South Africa.

These sessions are good for my own personal learning as well as to listen that the asset managers I use are remaining at the top of their game.  I also have to do a minimum of 30 hours per annum of this sort of ‘continuous education’ in order to retain my CFP® licence.