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Don’t be a headline reader

Look I get it. You don’t have time. You’re busy; I’m busy, everyone is busy. However, you are doing yourself a disservice if you aren’t reading past the headlines.

Headlines are great for short attention spans and cliff notes, but not for understanding the importance of the details. You are going to have to take the time to dive deeper into subjects if you want to grow your business and hit that next level.

First, I want to give credit, where credit is due. Gary Vaynerchuk has been preaching this mantra…for years. It isn’t new. He knows the difference it makes when you start listening and doing. I say again: Listening and Doing. I said that twice because it is important and bears repeating. If you are simply reading headlines and then acting, you are neither listening or doing. You are taking the easy way out and forgetting that the devil is in the details.

Headlines will tell you that nobody watches more than a two-minute video on Facebook, that Millennials don’t want to interact with you, that Snapchat is for kids, and that your older clients don’t use social media. All of which, as a narrative, is 100% false. Not only is it false, but it is, in fact, a pile of horse apples. Descriptive, yes, a little over the top, maybe. But I want your attention because this next part is important.

If you have been sucked into the above narrative, don’t worry, you are not alone. So has your competition, especially in our industry. If you don’t understand how important that last sentence was, then you might be in trouble. Why? Because your competition is WRONG, and if you want to gain attention, if you want to gain market share (punchline is YES, YOU DO), then you go where they aren’t. You do the things they won’t.

If you read past the headlines and start DOING, you would know that none of those headlines are true. Yes, of course, there are people who don’t watch more than 2 minutes of video. But guess what? There are people who don’t watch more than 30 seconds and some that don’t like video. You cannot bucket people using generalities because that is how you lose market share, not gain it. How do I know? By being a practitioner, by testing, and going deep into these subjects to see the real world results.

Here is what the headlines don’t say. If your content is good, people will watch or read or listen, across all demographics, no matter the length or format. It is simply a formula of attention and value. Understand that technology and social media are aging everyone down. The traditional marketing silos of demographics are being blown to pieces because of this.

By going past the headlines, you will see the 82-year-old grandma who only uses FB Messenger (true story), the 75-year-old Real Estate pro who uses Snapchat to coach his agents, and the other industry pros who do long-form blog posts and 15-minute videos that are killing it. Those of us in the industry who understand this and who go all in to capitalize on it will win.

Headline reading means staying inside the box. Not going deep into what is happening because you don’t have time to read a few paragraphs will be a death sentence. “TL;DR” is the rallying cry for the lazy. For those of you who want to be different and want to stand out, get into the details. Understand that in today’s era of consumerism it is all about listening (attention) and doing (executing).

Giglio Named Cushman & Wakefield’s Top Americas Producer for 2017

Cushman & Wakefield has named Executive Managing Director, Robert Giglio the real estate services firm’s top producer nationwide, and top office producer, in 2017.

Asian Capital Powers Record Global Growth in Real Estate Investment

The Global Investment Atlas 2018 – launched today at MIPIM at Cushman & Wakefield’s stand (Riviera Stand R7.G9) – reviews international investment patterns from 2017 and anticipates market performance for the year ahead.  

Brooks Macdonald adds further £5.5m to Spearpoint legacy pot; FUM climbs 25.8%

Aim-listed Brooks Macdonald has reported a 25.8% year-on-year increase in total discretionary funds under management (FUM), reaching £11.7bn at 31 December 2017, but said statutory profits fell due to a £5.5m increase in the provision for resolving its Spearpoint legacy matters.

Bloomberg: U.S. posts biggest budget deficit since 2012

Bloomberg writer Sarah McGregor is reporting that the U.S. Treasury claimed a $215 billion budget deficit in February, the biggest such claim in six years.

From the article:

“The data underscore concerns by some economists that Republican tax cuts enacted this year could increase the U.S. government debt load, which has surpassed $20 trillion. The tax changes are expected to reduce federal revenue by more than $1 trillion over the next decade, while a $300 billion spending deal reached by Congress in February could push the deficit higher.”

President Trump proposed extending g-fees in order to help make up budgetary shortfalls in the past.

That spending plan asks Congress to raise the fees the mortgage guarantors charge to back payments on mortgage-backed securities, according to an article by Joe Light for Bloomberg, published last month. The proposal would raise these guarantee fees by 0.1 percentage point and reduce the federal budget deficit by $25.7 billion over the next decade.

As for the current report, Nick Timiraos, economics correspondent for the Wall Street Journal, sent out this tweet in relation to the topic.

Short-term financing option charts return to mortgage lending

Raise your hand if you lived through the Great Recession.

Now keep your hand raised if you can define Asset-Backed Commercial Paper.

If you put your hand down, then truth be told, you didn’t really live through the Great Recession. You may have survived it, but to have lived it, is to know what caused it.

According to a recent panel during the Structured Finance Industry Group conference in Las Vegas, ABCP will remain an important funding product for the economy for years to come.

Commercial paper is a security issued by large banks and financing firms, used to meet short-term obligations. The funding can be for overnight liabilities and usually mature in less than a year. These corporations may use assets, such as real estate, to back the paper as collateral.

This note from the history of the Federal Reserve charts the descent into the Great Recession, and the role ABCP played:

The decline in home prices helped to spark the financial crisis of 2007-08, as financial market participants faced considerable uncertainty about the incidence of losses on mortgage-related assets. In August 2007, pressures emerged in certain financial markets, particularly the market for asset-backed commercial paper, as money market investors became wary of exposures to subprime mortgages (Covitz, Liang, and Suarez 2009). In the spring of 2008, the investment bank Bear Stearns was acquired by JPMorgan Chase with the assistance of the Federal Reserve. In September, Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, and the next day the Federal Reserve provided support to AIG, a large insurance and financial services company. Citigroup and Bank of America sought support from the Federal Reserve, the Treasury, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

By 2009, the popularity of the product was in a massive decline, especially as the CDOs that backed the ABCP spiked in defaults.

“We are constantly asked when the US ABCP market will stop dropping in terms of outstandings,” a report from Credit Suisse said at the time, “and we must be constantly reminded that we are still in a severe consumer recession, the term securitization market is still operating with a government lifeline, and the ABCP market itself still has government lifelines pumping through it; however, thankfully, the ABCP-related government programs are only being marginally used.” 

But today, with the performance of lending assets performing at historical highs, ABCP is coming back in style as a short-term financing option.

It needed some help to get there.

“Overall lending has evolved substantially, with issuers becoming more comfortable with existing regulation and technology contributing to the proliferation of new market entrants including FinTech companies and global alternative asset managers whose appetite for shorter term products, such as ABCP, has grown considerably,” a report on the panel from Standard & Poor’s noted today.

Here are the 4 reasons S&P cites for a strong ABCP market going forward:

  1. ABCP sponsors have satisfied the Risk Retention regulatory requirements, typically by purchasing 5% of their conduits’ outstanding ABCP. A recent court ruling that exempts CLOs from holding 5% capital for every transaction could potentially extend to ABCP, freeing some sponsors from the capital burden. Overall, issuers appear to be indifferent to the ruling given the time and effort they’ve already incurred in complying with the existing standards.
  2. While in the past, issuers and investors had opposing views on risk retention, they seem to have achieved a middle ground. Issuers became accustomed to holding 5% capital while investors became more comfortable with the quality of the assets.
  3. Due to Money Market reforms, the ABCP investor base has shifted dramatically from the prime institutional funds to non-2a7 funds, such as private liquidity and government funds.
  4. Basel’s Simple, Transparent, Comparable (STC) and Simple, Transparent, Standardised (STS) legislative frameworks scope in ABCP and establish strict criteria that both individual sellers (“transaction level”) and sponsors (“conduit level”) must meet to attain more lenient capital treatment. In the US, many bank conduit sponsors, which are already accustomed to strict capital requirements, see the costs of compliance out-weighing the cost of non-compliance. Their European counterparts, however, may see elevated capital levels for both STS and non-STS securitized positions.

“Repatriation of money in the wake of tax reform could give a temporary lift to the ABCP market as corporate treasurers, with new cash on hand, explore available short-term investment opportunities,” the S&P report concludes.

Mayer Brown partner James Tanenbaum resigns after allegations of inappropriate conduct surface

James Tanenbaum, a well-known capital markets specialist, resigned from his position as a partner at Mayer Brown this week after allegations that he engaged in inappropriate conduct at his former firm surfaced recently.

Tanenbaum began working at Mayer Brown just over a week ago, but resigned Thursday after several legal industry publications published articles detailing Tanenbaum’s allegedly inappropriate conduct while working at Morrison & Foerster.

Above The Law reported earlier this week that Tanenbaum was “fired from Morrison & Foerster’s New York office after allegations of sexual harassment there were supported by an internal investigation.”

From the Above the Law article:

Sources report that Tanenbaum had a history of allegations of “sexual harassment” and “inappropriate behavior” at the firm.

A source tells us that management at the firm was first made aware of Tanenbaum’s behavior a little over two years ago. That source says that Tanenbaum was reprimanded, at that time, and told to never do it again.

But… two years ago was a different lifetime when it comes to sexual harassment in the workplace. At least, let’s hope it was a different lifetime ago. Allegations against Tanenbaum resurfaced last year. One source, a partner at Morrison & Foerster who spoke to us on the condition of anonymity, said that the allegations against Tanenbaum were squarely in the sexual harassment category, “not assault.”

After leaving Morrison & Foerster, Tanenbaum moved to Mayer Brown, where he served as a partner in the firm’s corporate and securities practice.

According to his Mayer Brown bio (which is now deleted but was accessed via a Google cached version), Tanenbaum’s practice focused on “corporate finance and the structuring of complex domestic and international capital markets transactions.”

In that role, Tanenbaum would have represented “issuers, underwriters, agents and other financial intermediaries, in public and private offerings of securities, as well as issuers, investment banks and purchasers in hybrid, mortgage-related and derivative securities transactions.”

Earlier in his career, Tanenbaum helped write the Covered Bonds Handbook, which argued for covered bonds to be brought to the U.S. financial markets.

But, Tanenbaum resigned from Mayer Brown this week after the allegations about his behavior came to light.

In a statement provided to HousingWire by Mayer Brown, the firm said Tanenbaum denies the allegations against him, but chose to resign in the “best interest” of the firm.

“Today, Mayer Brown accepted the resignation of James Tanenbaum, who recently joined the firm. His resignation follows assertions that Mr. Tanenbaum may have engaged in inappropriate conduct at his former firm,” Mayer Brown said in its statement.

“Mr. Tanenbaum has informed Mayer Brown that he forcefully denies these assertions, but that he has determined that resigning is in the best interest of Mayer Brown, its clients and the capital markets group,” the firm’s statement continued. “We wish Mr. Tanenbaum well.”

Are You Beating the Market This Year?

In spite of the 2-week market correction, which began in late January and appears to have bottomed in early February, the S&P is just 5% away from its all-time highs.

In fact, all of the major indexes are trading near their all-time highs. And with that, there are plenty of investors handily beating the market.

So why are so many other investors underperforming the market?

Could it be that one of the reasons why so many people are not seeing the kinds of returns they want is because they don’t know of new stocks to get into? They find themselves in mediocre stocks because they don’t know of anything better instead?

I think that for some, their knowledge or ‘universe’ of familiar stocks is relatively small and this limits their opportunity of getting into better ones.

Which Half Are You In?

Nearly half of the companies in the S&P are beating the index and showing positive returns this year. But that means roughly half of the stocks in the S&P 500 are underperforming the Index.

Even ‘good’ companies like Walmart; they’re down -9.81%. Or Allstate, which is down -10.63%. Or even Ford, down -12.80%. And we’re not even 2½ months into the new year. So what gives?

I don’t single these out so you can feel bad if you have them. But instead, to stop and think about ‘why’ you have them.

Nobody invests so they can underperform the market. But if you are — why? You don’t have to. If you’re underperforming the market, that means you have more of these types of laggards in your portfolio than leaders.

Continued . . .


Free Book: Finding #1 Stocks

Today you can claim a copy of Finding #1 Stocks by Kevin Matras (a $49.95 value) free of charge. This 300-page hardbound book unfolds almost every stock-picking secret from the Zacks system that from 1988 through 2017 has more than doubled the S&P 500 with an average gain of +25% per year.

The book starts you toward mastering the system without attending a single class or seminar. Some of the strategies you’ll discover produced gains of +98.6%, +104.9%, +109.3%, and +115% in 2017 alone. Opportunity ends Sunday, March 11.

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How the Other Half Lives

Of course, there are a lot of big names beating the S&P too. Take Western Digital, or Mastercard, or Nvidia for example. All are outperforming the S&P with gains of +17.94%, +17.48%, and +25.22% respectively.

But now let’s move outside of the S&P.

Did you ever hear of a company called Fibria? What if you did? It has outperformed the market by gaining +31.84% since the start of the year. Or Qualys? They’re up +30.33%. Or Mammoth Energy? Up over +59%. (By the way, these are all Zacks #1 Rank stocks.)

There are hundreds and hundreds of stocks producing fantastic gains that many people may never have even heard of.

What about you? How many times have you heard about a stock or read about a stock that skyrocketed — only to think to yourself: “if only I knew about that stock ahead of time, I would have been in that”.

Expand Your Universe and Pick Better Stocks

Increasing your stock knowledge and awareness of new and better stocks is easier than you think. And you don’t have to reinvent the wheel.

• For example, over the last 29 years, the Zacks #1 Rank stocks have beaten the S&P 500 in 24 of the last 29 years, with an average annual return of +25.3% a year vs. the market’s +10.7%. That’s more than 2 times the returns of the S&P with an 82% annual win ratio.

• Stick with the top industries. Since roughly half of a stock’s price movement can be attributed to the group that it’s in, you’ll significantly increase your odds of success by focusing on the best groups. By how much? Our tests have shown that the top 50% of Zacks Ranked Industries outperforms the bottom 50% by a factor of 2 to 1. And the top 10% of industries outperform the most.

• Or select your next stock from a proven profitable stock picking strategy — like our ‘Filtered Zacks Rank 5’ strategy which was up over 98.6% last year; or our ‘New Highs’ strategy which was up +109.3%; or the ‘Big Money Zacks’ strategy which was up a whopping +115% last year!

Once you know what to look for, and how to pick better stocks, it can transform your portfolio.

You don’t need to turn yourself into an analyst to beat the market. Just focus on what works, and apply those methods consistently.


For most of us, our investments are the largest, most important chunk of money we’ll ever be responsible for in our entire life.

And if it isn’t now, it likely will be one day.

The leaders in the past (stock names we’re all too familiar with) will likely not be the leaders in the future.

But you can stay ahead of the pack by following some simple rules and methods that have proven to work.

And don’t be afraid to consider a stock you may never have heard of before. There was a time when some of the best stocks in your portfolio today, were brand new to you before you bought them. And now they’re one of your top performers.

The next time you read about or hear about a stock that’s skyrocketed in price; instead of thinking, ‘I could have been in that had I known about it’ — wouldn’t it be great to say, “I’m in it!”

Where to Start

There’s a simple way to add a big performance advantage for stock-picking success. It’s called the Zacks Method for Trading: Home Study Course.

With this fun, interactive online program, you can master the Zacks Rank without attending a single class or seminar. Do it online in your own home at your own pace. It covers the investment ideas I just shared and guides you to better trading step by step.

You’ll quickly see how to get the most out of the system that has more than doubled the market over the past 30 years. Discover how to identify what kind of trader you are, how to find stocks with the highest probability of success, and how to trade them so you can consistently beat the market regardless of where stock prices are headed.

The course also reveals our best-performing strategies representing a variety of different trading styles.

In 2017, many of them beat the booming +21.9% S&P 500 with gains of up to +98.6%, +104.9%, +109.3%, and +115%. Now you can download the latest picks from these strategies, or easily build and test your own winning screens.

Today is the perfect time to get in. I’m giving participants free hardbound copies of my book, Finding #1 Stocks, a $49.95 value. Its 300 pages unfold virtually every trading secret I have learned over the last 25 years to beat the market.

Please note: Copies of the book are limited and your opportunity to get one free ends midnight Sunday, March 11. So if you’re interested, be sure to check this out right now.

Find out more about the Zacks Home Study Course >>

Thanks and good trading,


Zacks Executive VP Kevin Matras is responsible for all our trading and investing services. He developed many of our most powerful market-beating strategies and directs the Zacks Method for Trading: Home Study Course.

3 Undervalued Zacks Rank #1 Stocks

Many investors completely freaked out during the correction, but those who are familiar with the Zacks Rank were licking their chops. What was the biggest frustration when the market was soaring? It was that the “easy money” had been made and stocks couldn’t go much higher.

Well, the correction took care of that. The market volatility can also be a help if you know how to play it.

The bottom line is that there are countless quality stocks that were too expensive a month ago…but not now. And once the market finds it’s balance in this strong economy, those stocks will have a long trip to get back to those highs. That long trip can be very profitable for investors.

The Zacks Rank is a great tool to find these stocks before the next leg higher. The Undervalued Zacks #1 Rank Stocks screen will give you a chance to act on these names before the rest of the crowd does. Take a look below at three of the bigger names on the list:

U.S. Steel (X Free Report)

President Trump shocked the market last week when he outlined plans to impose tariffs of 25% on steel and 10% on aluminum imports. He’s taking a lot of heat for this announcement on both Wall Street and Main Street over fears that it could raise prices and start a trade war. But the steel industry just loves the idea.

One of the beneficiaries would be U.S. Steel (X Free Report) . Shares are up more than 25% so far this year and it has put together three straight quarters of positive earnings surprises. In its fourth quarter release from January, X reported earnings per share of 76 cents, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 68 cents by 11.8%. Revenue popped 18.2% year over year to $3.13 billion, compared to the Zacks Consensus of about $3.07 billion.

For the full year, adjusted earnings per share of $1.94 marked a dramatic turnaround from last year’s loss of $1.60. Plus, net sales jumped more than 19% to $12.25 billion.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for this year is now at $3.73 per share, which has improved by nearly 42% over the past 60 days and about 13.7% in just the past 30. Expectations for next year are even more impressive. At the moment, we expect earnings for 2019 to climb 13.7% year over year to $4.24. The result improved by 93% in the past 60 days, including a rise of 13% in just the past month.

Macy’s (M Free Report)

Earnings estimates for Macy’s (M Free Report) really took off after the department store giant reported encouraging fiscal fourth quarter results last week. In just the past seven trading days, analysts have boosted this fiscal year’s expectation by nearly 25%, while next fiscal year has soared more than 70% in that time.

M now expects earnings per share between $3.55 and $3.75 for fiscal 2018 (ending January 2019). The Zacks Consensus Estimate at the time was only around $2.90, so there was a lot of room for higher revisions after the report. In addition to robust consumer sentiment, the company made several moves to get itself in a good position to find success in the ever-changing retail space.

The company has now topped our estimates for three straight quarters. Most recently, it reported earnings per share of $2.82 in its fiscal fourth quarter. The result was more than 4.8% better than the Zacks Consensus Estimate. Total revenues of $8.67 billion improved 1.8% from last year. Same -store sales were up 1.3%. M has now put together 34 straight quarters of double-digit growth in its digital business.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the current year is $3.63 per share. Earnings estimates had been rising even before the recent report. In fact, that outlook jumped 45.2% in 3 months. Analysts are only expecting $3.17 for next fiscal year, but that doesn’t end until January 2020. There’s a lot of time for improvement if M’s optimism eventually pays off. Plus, the outlook improved by an astounding 120% in the past 3 months.

So far, M has gained nearly 21% year to date, and is part of a space in the top 1% of the Zacks Industry Rank.

US Foods Holding Corp. (USFD Free Report)

US Foods Holding Corp. (USFD Free Report) is one of the country’s largest foodservice distributors, partnering with about 250,000 restaurants and foodservice operators. However, it has only been a publicly-traded company for less than two years.

Since its IPO, US Foods beat 6 times and matched once; it has never missed. It reported fourth quarter earnings of 44 cents per share in mid-February, which was 2.3% better than the Zacks Consensus Estimate at 43 cents. Net sales advanced 5.6% year over year to $6 billion. Total case volume increased 1.9% while independent restaurant case volume was up 7.1%.

US Foods sees adjusted diluted earnings per share of between $2 and $2.10 for the full year with net sales growth of 3% to 4%. It expects total case volume growth of 1% to 2%.

The full year saw net sales of $24.1 billion, or 5.4% better than last year. Total case volume increased 2.9% in 2017, while independent restaurant case volume was up 5.2%. These increases were credited to strong growth with independent restaurant, healthcare and hospitality customers.

Earnings estimates for this year and next have jumped since USFD’s quarterly report. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2018 is now at $2.05 per share, which has gained nearly 21% in the past two months and 13.3% in the past 30 days. Analysts currently expect earnings to then climb 14.1% further to $2.34 per share in 2019. The guidance has improved nearly 24% in two months and 14.7% in 30 days.

The Hottest Tech Mega-Trend of All

Last year, it generated $8 billion in global revenues. By 2020, it’s predicted to blast through the roof to $47 billion. Famed investor Mark Cuban says it will produce “the world’s first trillionaires,” but that should still leave plenty of money for regular investors who make the right trades early.

See Zacks’ 3 Best Stocks to Play This Trend >>

Nucleus plans Q2 float – reports; Transact lists on LSE

Nucleus Financial is understood to be the third platform company this year seeking to float, according to reports, while Transact has floated on the London Stock Exchange today.