Friday, Jun 3rd 2022
"It's an experiment, as all life is an experiment.” - Wendell Holmes
1) Lebron James is officially a billionaire: James has earned over $385 million in salary and reaped over $900 million in income from endorsements and other ventures throughout his career. Along with his lucrative TV and movie production company SpringHill, much of his wealth comes from equity investments with his partners in companies including Blaze Pizza, Lyft, and gym-maker Tonal.
Titan’s Takeaway: While celebrating wealth for wealth’s sake isn’t our cup of tea, James' and other athletes like Serena Williams' golden entry into venture investing is notable. Missing the playoffs this year hurts, but Spring Hills’ $725M valuation and his ownership stake in Fenway Sports Group should ease some of the pain.
2) The Queen’s Big Week: In London, raucous crowds swarmed outside Buckingham Palace to kick off the Platinum Jubilee in celebration of Queen Elizabeth’s 70-year reign. While the extravagant four-day celebration could cost taxpayers as much as 28 million pounds, the event is estimated to generate over 1 billion pounds for the economy.
Titan’s Takeaway: The UK's monthly GDP declined in 2002 and 2012 during the last two jubilees, and some economists point to the added day-off as a negative during a harsh economic environment. If GDP comes in lower in June, we'd be the first to point to energy prices and inflation as the more probable culprits.
3) OPEC+ set to increase oil output: OPEC+ pledged to increase production by 648,000 barrels a day, with energy prices still hanging around record highs. The commitment marks a stark turnaround for the alliance, which initially resisted increasing supply and dragged its feet as energy prices soared. The increase in production comes amidst the EU’s decision to ban most oil imports from Russia and as the U.S. saw average gasoline pump prices reach $4.71 per gallon.
Titan’s Takeaway: Scaling to meet production targets has caused issues for the powerful group in the past, so it remains to be seen if OPEC+ can even ramp up production effectively. While the added production is a step in the right direction, the increase is modest, and pain at the pump will likely linger for consumers.
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