Archive for December 4th, 2017

In 2016 the always brilliant Ron Howard produced and directed an endlessly interesting documentary about the Beatles. The Beatles: Eight Days a Week The Touring Years provides a behind the scenes look at the supergroup in its early days, and fans will not be disappointed.
But what stood out for this viewer was how much the Beatles wanted to succeed in the United States. It was everything. They expressed the view that a failure to break into the massive U.S. market would amount to a failure in general. Success in the U.S. was the personification of global credibility for a band…

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While other retailers focus on cities, the thriving discount chain is building thousands of small-town stores aimed at lower-income shoppers. “The economy is continuing to create more of our core customer.”

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"I said on Friday that it may not be good for the workers, but boy is it good for the stock market," Jim Cramer says.

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Republicans say their proposals will set off a wave of investment, hiring and raises. But the outlook from the executive suite is not so clear.

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The ongoing Congressional investigation of the Equifax data breach reminds me of a running joke my mother and I had about the old detective series, Murder She Wrote. What if the guilty party all along was the last person we expected, and Jessica Fletcher was really a serial killer who framed random strangers? Except that having our financial information written on a bathroom wall isn’t a joke. And, as we shall see, Congress grandstanding about fixing it is a bad one.
Let’s consider how the current hearings might instead prevent us from finding out what really happened and how to…

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<p>Stocks traded sharply higher Monday as sentiment was boosted by the Senate's narrowly passing a major tax bill over the weekend.</p><p></p>

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This chart (taken from a recent post by First Republic’s Samir Kaji, data from leading venture investor Horseley Bridge) shows that to get the 3-5x return that most venture capitalists target 10% of their portfolio need to return 10x+. That explains why we are so focused on market size and other upside indicators when we invest. Getting a 10x result is hard and if 10% of our portfolio is to reach those dizzy heights then all of our investments must have that potential.

Of course, a 10x return on an individual investment doesn’t necessarily return the whole fund and many venture funds go a step further and stipulate that every deal must be a potential fund returner. That’s the way that we work at Forward Partners, so for us every investment in our second fund must have the potential to return £60m back to our investor. That means if we have a 10% stake the exit value should be £600m or if we have a 25% stake it should be £240m. If we have invested £6m to get to that point the return will be 10x, and if we have invested less, the multiple will be higher. What doesn’t work for us is investing £2m and with the potential of getting £20m back – that’s a 10x return, but it’s not a fund returner.

It would be interesting to see a version of this chart which replaced “Percentage of investments > 10x return” on the Y-axis with “Percentage of investments that returned the fund”.



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<p>U.S. stocks opened sharply higher on Monday as investor sentiment was boosted the Senate narrowly passing a major tax bill over the weekend.</p>

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<p>U.S. drugstore chain operator CVS Health said Sunday it had agreed to acquire U.S. health insurer Aetna for $69 billion, seeking to tackle soaring healthcare spending through lower-cost medical services in pharmacies.</p>

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By Carl O'Donnell and Caroline Humer

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As 2017 enters its final month, here are 12 charts to illustrate what a year it's been in markets. Far be it from us to be party-poopers; but let's just say what we see makes us slightly nervous about 2018.

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Republicans say their proposals will set off a wave of investment, hiring and raises. But the outlook from the executive suite is not so clear.

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US stock index futures pointed to a strong positive open on Monday, as sentiment was boosted by news that the U.S. Senate narrowly passed a major tax bill.

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