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A roundup of what The Globe and Mail's market strategist Scott Barlow is reading today on the Web

In readers' emails, I often see a phenomenon where investors would rather have their market ideas proven right – oil should be higher, loose monetary policy will cause a collapse in the western financial system - than make money in their portfolio. Farnam Street blog explains why this is an unhelpful perspective,

"People who are working to prove themselves right will work hard finding evidence for why they're right. They'll go to the ends of the earth to disagree with someone who has another idea. Everything becomes about their being right … I had so much of my identity wrapped up in being right that I was blind to how the world really works … The most important lesson I've learned from running a company is that the more I give up trying to be right, the better the outcomes get for everyone."

"The Wrong Side of Right" – Farnam Street


Citi analysts have some ugly projections for employment in retail, transportation and logistics,

"80% of jobs in transportation, warehousing, and logistics are susceptible to automation as a consequence of the trends we observe in technology. Retail is one industry in which employment is likely to vanish, but unlike manufacturing jobs which are highly concentrated, the downfall of retail employment will affect every city and region. U.S. companies employ 2 million people just to do stock and order fulfillment work and over 90% of warehouse picking is currently done by hand."

"@SBarlow_ROB Citi: "80% of jobs in transportation, warehousing, and logistics are susceptible to automation " – (research excerpt) Twitter


Also from Citi, research concludes that shale oil producers are profitable at low prices but integrated oil giants need $60 per barrel,

"We see little to derail the view that shale, for several years, can meet the majority of global oil supply needs in a c.$40-55/bbl price range… Big Oil, in our view, needs to make more changes to compete in this environment. Most companies are adjusting, but there is a strong argument that the industry is doing so by underinvesting… Big Oil may be able to achieve dividend coverage at $50 oil, but at the expense of seeing reserve life fall 20% over the next five years. The group needs at least $60 oil to keep reserve-life flat, and likely more to grow."

"@SBarlow_ROB Citi: Big Oil needs $60/bbl" – (research excerpt) Twitter

See also: "Harvey's effects on fuel network hit U.S. motorists as gas prices rise" – Reuters

"Oil product cracks hit fresh 2-year highs as Harvey knocks out US refiners" – Platts


Merrill Lynch research attempted to pick the biggest winners from the Big Data trend in technology. The list includes the obvious names, Alphabet,, Facebook, Apple and Microsoft, but also some lesser known smaller companies,

Splunk (SPLK US): software platform for data analytics; Tableau (DATA US): nextgen business intelligence/analytics software; Workday (WDAY US): SaaS-based human capital management for enterprises, machine learning to derive predictive insights, Alibaba (BABA US): #1 Chinese eCommerce platform, #1 mobile payment platform; Baidu (BIDU US): #1 China search engine, 1st mover in AI for China; SAP (SAP GR): #1 enterprise software automation deploying AI analytics; Salesforce (CRM US): Einstein personal data scientist for AI/data analytics"

"@SBarlow_ROB Merrill picks winners in Big Data sector" – (research excerpt) Twitter


Tweet of the Day: "@BIS_org Average real #HousePrices up nearly 4% y/y in Q1; biggest increases in Canada, China & Australia #BISStatistics… " – (chart) Twitter

Diversion: "What We Get Wrong About Technology" – Tim Harford

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