Wednesday, Jun 8th 2022

Three Things (6/8)

Commentary

“Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

1) Private equity goes ‘retail’: Private equity giants including Blackstone, Ares and Apollo have created a host of new products aimed at the ‘everyday millionaire’. In May, Blackstone filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission to launch a fourth fund designed to offer access to its private equity business. Apollo’s CEO, Marc Rowan, announced plans to introduce one to two new products aimed at retail investors each quarter for the next 24 months.

Titan’s Takeaway: The move is another land grab for buyout firms looking to diversify capital raising away from pension funds and endowments. Although targeting folks with $1 million to $5million is a change in fundraising tactics for private equity giants, we could argue their plans don’t go far enough and leave an important group of investors out to dry.

2) The EU charges forward: European Union lawmakers reached an agreement that will force all smartphones, including the iPhone, sold in the EU to be equipped with a universal charging port. The legislation is an attempt to cut excess waste. Apple has long believed regulation around this subject will stifle innovation despite the EU asserting it will make necessary updates as technology develops.

Titan’s Takeaway: The results are a blow to hardware makers that profit from the charger's resale but don’t sleep on Apple’s ability to innovate around the news by re-emphasizing wireless charging at scale. They’ve always had a tendency to play chess when others play checkers.

3) World Bank cuts growth forecasts: The World Bank lowered its global forecasts as they expect growth to moderate to 2.9% in 2022, significantly lower than its January forecast of 4.1% growth. The World Bank signaled “the risk from stagflation is considerable”. They also warned that per capita income in developing economies will be nearly 5% below its prepandemic trend.

Titan’s Takeaway: The post pandemic slowdown is proving to be economy agnostic as countries around the globe are seeing dramatic decelerations in growth. How central banks react in the coming months will be key to the world’s ability to find a soft landing before experiencing a 1970s type pullback.

As of this writing, AAPL was a portfolio holding of Titan. This security may cease to be a portfolio holding at some point in the future.
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