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Companies promoting causes can be accused of ‘wokewashing’ – allying themselves only for good PR

 

Companies promoting causes can be accused of 'wokewashing' – allying themselves only for good PR

Ben & Jerry’s opened Art for Justice, which highlights the need for criminal justice reform and features art by formerly incarcerated artists. AP Images/Andy Duback

Courtesy of Kim Sheehan, University of Oregon

More consumers want companies to address societal problems, including climate change and crumbling infrastructure.

Additionally, more than half want to buy from brands that take stands on social issues.

At the same time, consumers are increasingly skeptical about these partnerships, seeing them as marketing stunts. It’s called wokewashing.

I’m a professor of brand responsibility, and my forthcoming research investigates brands and their relationships with social issues, including the importance of both allies and advocates.

Allies or advocates

In marketing terms, allies are members of a dominant social group that bring attention to important social issues.

A company can serve as an ally when it works to increase awareness about issues affecting marginalized groups.

Advocates take a more active role, working to change political, economic and social systems.

Companies can be advocates when they create campaigns to promote institutional change and provide financial support for groups engaged in creating social change.

Yoplait’s campaign to address patronizing attitudes toward moms is an example of corporate advocacy.

Another is Stella Artois’ partnership with Water.org to end the global water crisis. This partnership has already raised more than US$3 million in donations to bring almost a million people access to clean water, according to a spokesperson from Water.org.

The brand Stella Artois advocates to end the global water crisis.

Pride month

However, corporate adventures into social issues aren’t always well thought out or received.

For example, consider this year’s Pride celebrations. The number of brands participating in Pride was at an all-time high in 2019. Brands, including T-Mobile, Alaska Airlines and MasterCard, featured supportive messages and announced donations to support…
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Trade Off Thursday – Words Speak Louder than Actions

Image result for trump trade football charlie brown"And now there's no trade deal – again.

Keep in mind that, a month ago, we were told the deal was ready to sign and it amazes me that, almost every day, the Financial Media carries articles that say "President Trump Says Great Progress Being Made" as that's like running headlines saying "Boy Who Cried "Wolf" Says There's a Wolf".  Are we seriously that dumb?  Apparently, you can fool some of the people ALL of the time because someone is that dumb and the market rallies EVERY SINGLE TIME on the same news it rallied about last time

Remember, all Trump even promised was a LIMITED deal, a part one of 5 or whatever because there was no way they could even pretend to be close on an overall deal.  In fact, 100 Economists polled by Reuters don't expect a real trade truce until 2021 - let alone next week.  While the median probability of a Recession for the coming year fell to 25% from 35% last month, the Economic Growth outlook remained modest. 

Image result for economic forecast cartoon"Over 80% of 52 respondents to an additional question said the Fed had done enough to delay the next recession but that already-modest growth forecasts were largely left unchanged.  "I think in terms of the risks, they are probably still tilted towards the Fed maybe cutting rates once more at some point in the coming months if growth slows further, certainly if there is some renewed breakdown in trade talks," said Andrew Hunter, senior U.S. economist at Capital Economics.  "But barring that, it does look like they have done enough to avert a recession. In our baseline forecast, there is growth slowing a little bit further over the next couple of quarters but starting to recover next year."

I gave my own Economic Forecast last night on Money Talk, embracing the uncertainty:

As you can see, the NYSE has indeed been drifting along under the 13,500 line for two years after breaching it early in 2018.  The NYSE is the…
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Testification Tuesday – Let the Impeachment Begin!

Image result for trump i am not a crook"Here we go!

After months of nonsense, the public Impeachment Hearings finally begin next week and, just to be clear, this is just a show for the public because the witnesses have, for the most part, already testified in closed-door meetings and will now be asked to repeat the highlights of their testimony for public consumption.  That's not a knock on the Democrats – that's just how these things work.  

Later on, there will be fresh testimony from people closer to the top of the Trump Food Chain – as well as from people who are, even now, attempting to block being forced to testify so they can (hopefully) avoid being charged as co-conspiritors, enablers or traitors.  During Nixon's impeachment, we had testimony from:

James McCord: One of the Watergate burglers who used to be in the CIA and the FBI.  Security officer for the Committe to RE-Elect the President (CREEP).  McCord wrote a letter to Judge Sirica claiming the defendents had pled guilty under pressrue and committed purjury.  In January 1973, WH Security Liaison Caulfield had told McCord the White House would grant him clemency, money and a job if he accepted his prison sentence and didn’t testify against members of the administration. When McCord relayed he had been offered clemency “from the highest levels of the White House” before the Senate Watergate committee on May 18, 1973, Nixon’s ties to the efforts of the White House to break into Democratic National Committee Headquarters finally surfaced.

John Dean: Former WH Counsel pled guilty to obstruction of justice in Oct, 1973.  Spent 4 months in jail.  Barred from practicing law (as Guilianni will be), Dean became an author and does well as a guest and speaker post-Watergate.  

HR Halerman:  Nixon's Chief of Staff.  A tape revealed the President discussing with Haldeman a plan to have the CIA divert the FBI from the probe because it involved national security. Haldeman resigned in April 1973 and was jailed for 18 months.  Halderman went to work for David Murdock's Real Estate Company.  

Alexander Butterfield: Nixon's Deputy Chief of Staff who revealed the existence of the taping system in the first place saying “When Don Sanders, the deputy
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  1. phil

    Good morning! 

    BKNG on a wild ride, back to $1,950!

    Booking Holdings (NASDAQ:BKNG) reports gross bookings were up 4.1% in Q2 to top the consensus estimate for a 3.8% increase. On a constant currency basis, bookings rose 7% during the quarter.

    Room nights sold were up 11.0%, while rental car days were 8.5% higher. Airline tickets were down 2.5% on an unit basis.

    The company reported adjusted EBITDA rose 5% during the quarter to $2.50B vs. $2.45B consensus. Adjusted EBITDA is expected to fall in a range of $1.21B to $1.235B for Q4.

    BKNG +3.73% AH to $1,918.99.

    Previously: Booking Holdings EPS beats by $0.93, misses on revenue (Nov. 7)

    Bottom line seems to be they are hurting their competition and holding up well as others decline.  Right in the range for us now.

    NDLS did well but a slight revenue miss.  No worries

    Noodles & Company (NASDAQ:NDLS): Q3 Non-GAAP EPS of $0.09 beats by $0.02; GAAP EPS of $0.09 beats by $0.01.

    Revenue of $118.3M (+1.3% Y/Y) misses by $2.4M.

    Press Release

    DIS was fantastic but not over $140 fantastic.

    Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS) is up 3.8% postmarket after easily clearing the Street's profit bar in fiscal Q4 earnings, paced by strong gains in its TV networks and film studio juiced by its Fox acquisitions.

    Revenues grew 34% Y/Y to $19.1B for the quarter. For the fiscal year, revenues were up 17% to $69.57B.

    Total segment operating income rose 5% to $3.44B. Net income from continuing operations was $785M.

    Revenue by segment: Media Networks, $6.51B (up 22%); Parks, Experiences and Products, $6.66B (up 8%); Studio Entertainment, $3.31B (up 52%); Direct-to-Consumer and International, $3.43B (up 316%).

    Broadcast was an unexpected strength in Media Networks revenues, coming in well ahead of schedule at $2.27B.

    Cash from continuing operations was $1.72B, and free cash


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Monday Market Momentum – Lost Due to Trade Setback

Trade off!

Over the weekend we had a little setback in the trade negotiations as Trump said he has NOT agreed to remove tariffs on Chinese goods and that news came after Chinese markets had closed on Friday so this morning,  the Shanghai Composite wwas down 1.8% and Hong Kong's Hang Seng dropped 2.6%.

Also in Hong Kong, tensions escalated even further this morning as the police opened fire on protesters while Hong Kong's Governor said the Govevernment won't "yield to violence."  A man was also "set on fire" – apparently by the protesters.  Around midday, crowds of office workers were seen fleeing clouds of tear gas filling the streets. Some rushed into the lobbies of buildings to seek shelter and poured water over their eyes to relieve the pain. Police made a number of arrests as people chanted abuse at them.  

Combine that level of chaos in a densely packed city AND have the market start to collapse – that's a recipe for disaster and one of the main reasons we've been leary about re-committing our capital to the market.  Chinese protests, however, also gave us our shorting premise on Booking.com (BKNG), as we discussed last week in our Short-Term Portfolio Review.  We felt the earnings would be impacted by the protests – which have been going on all quarter and we got a nice dip in BKNG on earnings, leading to a massive $18,872 (19%) portfolio gain in just two days – your welcome!  

Our BKNG spread is now up $34,600 out of $40,000 potential in just two months but the way we've set it up is to generate quarterly premium income selling puts and calls – and it's right on track to make us $40,490 this quarter alone so no, we're not going to be cashing in this one early – despite the massive gains.  This is why I started Phil's Stock WORLD 15 years ago – Global Events matter, Politics matter – and most investing sites ignore them or only pay them lip service at best and ignore them at worst, while we find ways to profit from them instead!

We will be starting a brand new
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Slowing but Not Stopping (Yet)

 

Slowing but Not Stopping (Yet)

Courtesy of John Mauldin, Thoughts from the Frontline

If you are a computer (other than the newest experimental quantum ones), your world is entirely binary. Everything is some combination of zeroes and ones. The machines can do marvelous things with those two digits but they have limits.

We humans don’t have to think in either/or terms, yet we often do. I see it in the economic outlooks that cross my screen. Some forecast imminent doom, others endless boom. But in reality, there is lots of room between the extremes.

I’m known as the “Muddle Through” guy, which is another way of saying I think “both/and” instead of “either/or.” We can have both a successful outcome and difficulty getting there. And that’s been my economic outlook for a long time. We are entering a rough period and eventually recession will come, but it will be survivable.

The real damage will come in the “echo” recession that I think will follow. Policy changes, mostly of the political backlash type, will ensure the mid-2020s won’t be fun. Ray Dalio just wrote another piece that I will excerpt and link to below, but I was struck by how similar our worries and concerns are. We are approaching a crisis unlike anything we have ever seen, what I term The Great Reset, without any kind of realistic plan.

But that is more than a few years down the road. Today I want to focus on that “entering a rough period” part that comes first. The signs are growing clearer and the bumps bigger.

Technical Recession

For now, the global slowdown is less visible in the United States. That doesn’t mean it will never reach us. It just means others are further down the road we are all traveling.

Germany, for instance, may already be in recession. GDP there dropped 0.1% in this year’s second quarter, with little reason to expect better from Q3 which we will learn next week. (Two consecutive quarters of negative GDP growth constitutes recession, by some definitions.)

Whatever you call it, Germany is certainly not in a good spot. It is highly dependent on exports which, for various reasons, are weakening, particularly in…
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Will Netflix eventually monetize its user data?

 

Will Netflix eventually monetize its user data?

Netflix currently spends much more cash than it brings in, leading to consistent negative cash flow and a mountain of debt. sakhorn/Shutterstock.com

Courtesy of Jason Mittell, Middlebury

Even in the wake of a recent mixed earning report and volatile stock prices, Netflix remains the media success story of the decade. The company, whose user base has grown rapidly, now boasts almost 150 million global subscribers.

But as someone who studies the television industry, I’ve always wondered how Netflix can provide so much unlimited ad-free content for such a low monthly rate, which currently averages around US$14.

After all, didn’t MoviePass just fall apart using a similar model of offering ad-free content for a monthly subscription fee? And Netflix is burning through cash, with negative cash flow of $3 billion in 2018 alone.

What if we’re looking at Netflix through the wrong lens? What if its primary long-term business model is not as a media content or distribution company, but as a data aggregation company?

Seeing Netflix this way might better explain its current strategy and clue us into the company’s future plans, while raising red flags about ethics and privacy.

Spending more and charging less

For a century of screen entertainment, there were only a few ways for Americans to pay for media:

  • You could purchase a book, album or DVD, “lease” a movie theater seat or rent a tape at a video store;

  • You could pay with your attention by consuming ads alongside “free” radio or television programming;

  • Or you could subscribe to cable TV, and pay a large monthly fee to access an array of scheduled programming.

Netflix doesn’t follow any of these three models. Instead it most resembles HBO’s subscription service, which similarly provides ad-free original programming alongside a library of older content for a monthly fee.

While they may seem analogous, there are key differences. HBO is part of a larger media company, which gives it access to vast content libraries. And even though HBO charges…
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Fabulous Friday Finish

Wow.

I mean WOW!  Check out the headline on the front page of today's Wall Street Journal.  Is it really "news" to say the same thing, over and over again for month after month?  I guess it is news to traders because, once again, we're up in pre-market trading.  This is just what we were talking about yesterday, MADNESS!  

I guess it helps distract Conservative readers from the headline in the NY Times that says: "Impeachment Inquiry Tests Ties Between Barr and Trump" as it turns out Trump put pressure on Barr to make an official statement that his Ukraine call was "perfect" but Barr refused to say the President did not commit a crime when Trump demanded the Ukraine launch an investigation of Joe Biden and his son in exchange for the military aid Congress had already approved for our NATO allies in the Ukraine.  

Mr. Trump on Thursday angrily denied a report in The Washington Post, which was confirmed by The New York Times, that he wanted Mr. Barr to hold a news conference to say that the president had broken no laws, only to be rebuffed by the attorney general.  In a Twitter post, Mr. Trump called The Post’s article “pure fiction,” adding: “We both deny this story, which they knew before they wrote it. A garbage newspaper!” Mr. Barr, however, did not publicly deny the account.

Image result for trump obstruction impeachment"Perhaps if Trump hadn't already had Barr make a fool of himself attempting to exhonerate the President in the Meuller Report, Trump would still have some political capital to spend but the sheer volume of scandals surrounding the President makes it hard for Barr to be the point man defending every crime – lest he himself become an impeachable obstructor.  

Barr is getting into hot water as he's been in the loop as half the witnesses called by the House Committee investigating the matter have refused to testify.  Failure to answer a Congressional subpeona is a jailable offense but, so far, the House is just skipping ahead to the next witness and will re-call the dodgers next week in the public hearings so they can publically defy Congress and then there will be…
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Thrilling Thursday – Markets Blast Higher on Trade Progress (Again?)

Image result for peek a boo trump animated gif"I feel like we're playing Peek-a-Boo!  

You know, the game in which you are able to surprise a baby over and over again with the same simple trick?  Yeah, "peek-a-boo" – whose got a trade deal?  You have a trade deal!  Good boy.   Where's the trade deal?  Peek-a-boo!  There it is?  Look, it's a trade deal.  Where's the trade deal?  Where is it?  Peek-a-Boo!  There it is!  Who's a good boy?  Where's the trade deal?  Do you see a trade deal?  Peek-a-Boo!  There it is!  

Isn't that fun?  I could play that game for months and, apparently, every time I play the market goes higher – no matter how many times I show some small amount of progress towards a trade deal WE FRIGGING HAD TWO YEARS AGO!  There is no imagined scenario in which the US is actually getting a "better" deal than the free trade deal we had BEFORE Trump began messing around.  Trump has forced China to make other trading alliances – and China is not going to throw that away just to please the unreliable US.  

Today's big reveal, that's good for a 150-point (0.5%) gain on the Dow is because Beijing, WITHOUT saying there will be a deal, laid our a framework for phasing out tariffs over time.  Officially, according to the WSJ:

BEIJING—China’s Commerce Ministry said China and the U.S. have agreed to lift some tariffs on one another in stages if the two countries reach a partial trade deal, a goal both have been building toward since October.

If the phase-one deal is signed, China and the U.S. should remove the same proportion of tariffs simultaneously based on the content of the deal,” spokesman Gao Feng said at a regular press


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Wonderful Wednesday – Still at Record Highs – What Could Go Wrong?

Image result for S&P 3,100Another day near 3,100 on the S&P.

Kentucky seems to have voted Democrat Andy Bshaear to be the new Governor but current Governor, Matt Bevin refuses to concede, so that will drag on all day and maybe longer.  In Virginia, however, Democrats completely flipped the state blue, taking over the Senate and the House in a state that had been dependably Republican.  These are not good signs for the GOP in November or Trump now as Bevin was a huge Trump supporter and Trump personally flew down there and campaigned hard for him Monday night.

If GOP Senators, Congresspeople and Governors find no use for Trump's support – it's not a great leap to imagining they will find no use for Trump and his unbreakable wall of GOP impeachment blockers may begin to crumble.  Kentucky is Mitch McConnell's home state and "Moscow Mitch" only won 2014 56% to 40% against a throw-away candidate for the Dems (Alison Grimes).  Bevin won in 2015 52.5% to 43.8% and is out on his ass today – Mitch is getting nervous to say the least – as he hasn't had a real job since 1985.

China buys more from Brazil as tariffs biteMeanwhile, according to Bloomberg's excellent new "Terms of Trade" section (and according to me yesterday), China is insisting Trump drop all tariffs in order to move forward with the signing Trump is promising on Nov 17th.  In other words, there is no actual deal and Trump's lying to the American People and claiming there is one has now painted the US into a corner where Trump will be forced to concede to China in order to cover up his lies – that's why these things matter!

From the Chinese perspective, the argument is that if they are going to remove one big point of leverage and resume purchases of American farm goods and make new commitments to crack down on intellectual property theft — the key elements of the interim deal — then they want to see equivalent moves to remove tariffs by the U.S. rather than the simple lifting of the threat of future duties.

Also according to Bloomberg, the risk of a US
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Phil's Favorites

Why telling people with diabetes to use Walmart insulin can be dangerous advice

Reminder: We are available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

Why telling people with diabetes to use Walmart insulin can be dangerous advice

A vial of insulin. Prices for the drug, crucial for those with diabetes, have soared in recent years. Oleksandr Nagaiets/Shutterstock.com

Courtesy of Jeffrey Bennett, Vanderbilt University

About 7.4 million people ...



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Biotech

Why telling people with diabetes to use Walmart insulin can be dangerous advice

Reminder: We are available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

Why telling people with diabetes to use Walmart insulin can be dangerous advice

A vial of insulin. Prices for the drug, crucial for those with diabetes, have soared in recent years. Oleksandr Nagaiets/Shutterstock.com

Courtesy of Jeffrey Bennett, Vanderbilt University

About 7.4 million people ...



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Zero Hedge

The Cheapest Places To Rent An Apartment In The U.S.

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Americans who are looking for a deal on an apartment might want to check out Ohio...

You will find more infographics at Statista

A one-bedroom apartment in Columbus, Ohio, costs $489 a month. It's the only zip code on th...



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The Technical Traders

What happens To The Global Economy If Oil Collapses Below $40 - Part II

Courtesy of Technical Traders

In the first part of this research article, we shared our ADL predictive modeling research from July 10th, 2019 where we suggested that Oil prices would begin to collapse to levels near, or below, $40 throughout November and December of 2019.  Our ADL modeling system suggests that oil prices may continue lower well into early 2020 where the price is exp...



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Chart School

Dow Jones cycle update and are we there yet?

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

Today the Dow and the SP500 are making new all time highs. However all long and strong bull markets end on a new all time high. Today no one knows how many new all time highs are to go, maybe 1 or 100+ more to go, who knows! So are we there yet?

readtheticker.com combine market tools from Richard Wyckoff, Jim Hurst and William Gann to understand and forecast price action. In concept terms (in order), demand and supply, market cycles, and time to price analysis. 

Cycle are excellent to understand the wider picture, after all markets do not move in a straight line and bear markets do follow bull markets. 



CHART 1: The Dow Jones Industrial average with the 900 period cycle.

A) Red Cycle:...

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Insider Scoop

What Wall Street Thinks Of Google Cache

Courtesy of Benzinga

Alphabet, Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG) (NASDAQ: GOOGL) subsidiary Google announced a new partnership with Citigroup Inc (NYSE: C) to launc...



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Digital Currencies

Is Bitcoin a Macro Asset?

 

Is Bitcoin a Macro Asset?

Courtesy of 

As part of Coindesk’s popup podcast series centered around today’s Invest conference, I answered a few questions for Nolan Bauerly about Bitcoin from a wealth management perspective. I decided in December of 2017 that investing directly into crypto currencies was unnecessary and not a good use of a portfolio’s allocation slots. I remain in this posture today but I am openminded about how this may change in the future.

You can listen to this short exchange below:

...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Silver Testing This Support For The First Time In 8-Years!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

Its been a good while since Silver bulls could say that it is testing support. Well, this week that can be said! Will this support test hold? Silver Bulls sure hope so!

This chart looks at Silver Futures over the past 10-years. Silver has spent the majority of the past 8-years inside of the pink shaded falling channel, as it has created lower highs and lower lows.

Silver broke above the top of this falling channel around 90-days ago at (1). It quickly rallied over 15%, before creating a large bearish reversal pattern, around 5-weeks after the bre...



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Lee's Free Thinking

Today's Fed POMO TOMO FOMC Alphabet Soup Unspin

Courtesy of Lee Adler

But make no mistake, if the Fed wants money rates to stay down by another quarter, it will need to imagineer even more money.

That’s on top of the $281 billion it has already imagineered into existence since addressing its “one-off” repo market emergency on September 17. This came via  “Temporary” Repo Man Operations money, and $70.6 billion in Permanent Open Market Operations (POMO) money.

By my calculations that averages out to $7.4 billion per business day. That works out to a monthly pace of $155 billion or so.

If they keep this up, it will be more than enough to absorb every penny of new Treasury supply. That supply had caused the system to run out of money in mid September.  This flood of paper had been inundati...



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Mapping The Market

How IPOs Are Priced

Via Jean Luc 

Funny but probably true:

...

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Members' Corner

Despacito - How to Make Money the Old-Fashioned Way - SLOWLY!

Are you ready to retire?  

For most people, the purpose of investing is to build up enough wealth to allow you to retire.  In general, that's usually enough money to reliably generate a year's worth of your average income, each year into your retirement so that that, plus you Social Security, should be enough to pay your bills without having to draw down on your principle.

Unfortunately, as the last decade has shown us, we can't count on bonds to pay us more than 3% and the average return from the stock market over the past 20 years has been erratic - to say the least - with 4 negative years (2000, 2001, 2002 and 2008) and 14 positives, though mostly in the 10% range on the positives.  A string of losses like we had from 2000-02 could easily wipe out a decades worth of gains.

Still, the stock market has been better over the last 10 (7%) an...



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Promotions

Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"

 

 

Here's a free ebook for you to check out! 

Phil has a chapter in a newly-released eBook that we think you’ll enjoy.

In My Top Strategies for 2017, Phil's chapter is Secret Santa’s Inflation Hedges for 2017.

This chapter isn’t about risk or leverage. Phil present a few smart, practical ideas you can use as a hedge against inflation as well as hedging strategies designed to assist you in staying ahead of the markets.

Some other great content in this free eBook includes:

 

·       How 2017 Will Affect Oil, the US Dollar and the European Union

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About Phil:

Philip R. Davis is a founder Phil's Stock World, a stock and options trading site that teaches the art of options trading to newcomers and devises advanced strategies for expert traders...

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