Freedominst Wed, 18 May 2022 04:22:51 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Freedominst 32 32 Statutory income may not be the best way to understand Platige Image’s true position (WSE:PLI) Wed, 18 May 2022 04:14:09 +0000

We have not seen Platige Image SA (WSE:PLI) stocks surged when they recently reported strong earnings. We decided to deepen our analysis and we believe that investors might be concerned about several worrying factors that we have discovered.

See our latest analysis for Platige Image

WSE: PLI earnings and revenue history May 18, 2022

Focus on Platige Image revenues

In high finance, the key ratio used to measure a company’s ability to convert reported earnings into free cash flow (FCF) is the exercise ratio (cash). The strike ratio subtracts the FCF from the profit for a given period and divides the result by the average operating assets of the company over that period. This ratio tells us how much of a company’s profit is not backed by free cash flow.

Therefore, a negative accrual ratio is positive for the company and a positive accrual ratio is negative. That’s not to say we should worry about a positive accumulation ratio, but it’s worth noting where the accumulation ratio is rather high. Indeed, some academic studies have suggested that high accrual ratios tend to lead to lower earnings or less earnings growth.

For the year to March 2022, Platige Image had a accrual ratio of 0.28. Therefore, we know that his free cash flow was significantly lower than his statutory profit, which raises questions about the real usefulness of this profit figure. In the last year he had actually negative free cash flow of 2.4 million zł, in contrast to the aforementioned profit of 6.67 million zł. We also note that Platige Image’s free cash flow was also negative last year, so we could understand if shareholders were bothered by its zł2.4 million outflow. However, this is not the end of the story. We can examine the impact of unusual income statement items on its accrual ratio, as well as the negative impact of dilution on shareholders.

To note: we always recommend that investors check the strength of the balance sheet. Click here to be redirected to our analysis of Platige Image’s balance sheet.

In order to understand the potential return per share, it is essential to consider how much a company dilutes shareholders. In this case, Platige Image has issued 9.1% more new shares over the past year. This means that its profits are distributed among a larger number of shares. Celebrating net income while ignoring dilution is like rejoicing that you have a single slice of a larger pizza, but ignoring the fact that the pizza is now cut into multiple slices. You can see a chart of Platige Image’s EPS by clicking here.

What is the impact of dilution on Platige Image’s earnings per share? (EPS)

Platige Image was losing money three years ago. On the bright side, over the last twelve months, it has increased its profits by 167%. On the other hand, earnings per share only increased by 142% over the same period. So you can see that the dilution had a bit of an impact on the shareholders.

Changes in share price tend to reflect changes in earnings per share, over the long term. So it will definitely be a shareholder benefit if Platige Image can grow EPS persistently. However, if its earnings increase while its earnings per share remain stable (or even decline), shareholders might not see much benefit. For the ordinary retail shareholder, EPS is an excellent metric to verify your hypothetical “share” of company earnings.

How do unusual items affect profits?

Given the exercise ratio, it’s not too surprising that Platige Image’s profit was boosted by unusual items worth zł 1.6 million over the past twelve months. While we like to see increases in earnings, we tend to be a bit more cautious when unusual items have made a big contribution. We have analyzed the figures of most publicly traded companies around the world, and it is very common for unusual items to be unique in nature. Which is hardly surprising, given the name. Assuming these unusual items do not reoccur in the current year, we would therefore expect earnings to be weaker next year (in the absence of business growth, i.e. ).

Our view on Platige Image’s earnings performance

Platige Image didn’t support earnings with free cash flow, but that’s not too surprising given earnings were inflated by unusual items. Meanwhile, new shares issued mean that shareholders now own less of the company, unless they themselves contribute more cash. For the reasons mentioned above, we believe that a cursory glance at Platige Image’s statutory earnings might make it look better than it actually is on an underlying level. So while the quality of the benefits is important, it is equally important to consider the risks that Platige Image faces at this stage. For example, we have identified 3 Warning Signs for Platige Image (1 is a bit obnoxious) that you should know.

In this article, we’ve looked at a number of factors that can detract from the usefulness of profit numbers, and came out cautious. But there’s always more to discover if you’re able to focus on the details. For example, many people view a high return on equity as an indication of a favorable trading economy, while others like to “follow the money” and look for stocks that insiders are buying. So you might want to see this free collection of companies offering a high return on equity, or this list of stocks that insiders buy.

This Simply Wall St article is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It is not a recommendation to buy or sell stocks and does not take into account your objectives or financial situation. Our goal is to bring you targeted long-term analysis based on fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not take into account the latest announcements from price-sensitive companies or qualitative materials. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.

Irish winger Callum O’Dowda wanted by Cardiff City after Bristol exit Tue, 17 May 2022 11:06:10 +0000

Cardiff City are reportedly interested in free agent Callum O’Dowda.

Irish winger Callum O’Dowda may soon have a new home after his contract with Bristol City expires.

The 27-year-old was released by the Robins on Monday night after six seasons at Ashton Gate but is expected to remain in the EFL Championship next season.

According to the Bristol Post, seven clubs are pursuing his signing, with Cardiff City looking like favorites at the moment.

O’Dowda has been limited to sixteen starts this season as injuries once again hampered his progress under Nigel Pearson.

Nigel Pearson at the O’Dowda exit.

Earlier this week Bristol announced the signing of Irishman Mark Sykes from O’Dowda’s former club Oxford and, although the 24-year-old mainly plays in central midfield, he can also operate in left.

So it’s possible that Sykes will prove to be a direct replacement for the Ireland international by following in his footsteps.

Explaining his reasons for releasing O’Dowda, former Leicester boss Pearson, however, was tight-lipped, saying simply “It’s just time for a change”.

“I think Callum has been here for six years. It accompanies our best wishes. He’s a very good boy, but it’s time for a change.

“It is time to change direction. It’s that simple.”

O’Dowda has managed to make 155 Championship appearances since signing for Bristol in 2016 and hopes to add to that number next season, albeit with a different club.

Cardiff City target Callum O’Dowda.

O’Dowda qualifies for Ireland through his grandfather Brendan and made his debut for the Boys in Green in 2016 against Belarus at Turner’s Cross.

The free agent has featured for Ireland on 23 occasions, his last appearance against Wales in the 2020 UEFA Nations League.

Despite his frustrating injury record, O’Dowda has started three times under Stephen Kenny to date and is regularly checked by the Dubliner.

“He’s kind of a potentially versatile player,” Kenny said last month. “He can play at left-back, he’s played that a bit with Bristol this year.

“We probably see him as a top-three southpaw, but he can also play on the right.

“He’s a good player, Callum, but obviously he just needs to play games.”

For all the latest Irish transfers this summer, be sure to check out our Kenny Children’s Transfer Centre.

Find out more about: Bristol City, callum o’dowda, cardiff city, irish football, Kenny’s Kids

Advantages and Disadvantages of Interest Only Mortgages Mon, 16 May 2022 19:13:39 +0000

Homebuyers who feel caught off guard by escalating financing costs might be tempted to explore unconventional home loans known as interest-only mortgages, which have much lower down payments compared to a standard mortgage.

But these loans have some major drawbacks that potential borrowers should also be aware of.

With an interest-only mortgage, you only pay interest on the loan initially, usually for the first five or 10 years. The advantage is that these upfront payments are cheaper since you are not required to make payments on the full amount borrowed, known as the principal.

After the initial interest-only period ends, you start paying principal and interest for the remainder of the term of the loan. Payment terms vary, but the interest rate is usually reset to the prevailing rate at that time, which may have increased. And with principal now included, those payments can cost you double or triple what you originally paid on the loan, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

If payments become too expensive, borrowers can try to negotiate a longer term or refinance the loan with a cheaper mortgage rate, if available. However, refinancing can still cost around 2-5% of the total loan, which could offset the savings from a reduced monthly premium.

Right now, interest-only mortgages are “getting more and more popular,” says Shmuel Shayowitz, president of Approved Funding, a mortgage company. He says that for some buyers, it “helps bridge the monthly payment gap.”

But again, as Shayowitz points out, there are downsides to these types of loans that every borrower should consider, even though they can temporarily save you a few hundred dollars a month.

The Disadvantages of Interest-Only Home Loans

First, these loans generally charge higher interest rates than conventional mortgages. The reduced monthly cost comes only from postponing the principal payment to a later date.

And because you’re paying a higher interest rate and making more interest payments overall, you’ll also pay more interest over time, compared to a conventional loan.

Additionally, there is a risk that mortgage rates will rise over time, as has been the case recently. This would make the monthly payments more expensive than originally expected after the end of the interest-only period. The burden of these additional costs could expose borrowers to the risk of loan default.

Rate increases are usually capped at around 2% after the initial interest-only period expires, but this can still be a significant expense.

Another risk is that if your home loses value, the subsequent sale of the property may not cover the full cost of the loan.

“Think about why you’re considering it,” Shayowitz says. A bad candidate for an interest-only loan would be someone looking to “cut a few dollars” off their monthly costs just to move into a home they might not otherwise qualify for.

A good candidate for this type of loan usually has a reliable source of income with enough cash to cover mortgage payments after the interest-only period expires. Mortgage rates could rise further, but the buyer would be willing to accept that risk, especially if they plan to sell the home in a few years. Choosing an interest-only mortgage would temporarily free up money for other expenses or investments.

“A lot of it comes down to putting pen to paper,” says Andy Darkins, certified financial planner at wealth management firm Vista Capital Partners. He advises potential buyers to “stress test” their short- and long-term cash flow before considering an interest-only loan.

“Look at different scenarios,” he says. “At the end of [interest-only] term, what happens if the payment doubles? What if it was somewhere between that and your initial payments? Ask yourself if you could actually afford the payments in each of these circumstances.”

For homeowners looking to minimize monthly costs, another option to consider is a conventional variable rate mortgage, which typically offers lower rates than fixed rate home loans. Again, terms vary, but generally the interest rate on an adjustable mortgage will be locked in for an initial term of five, seven, or 10 years, after which it resets annually or even monthly.

The advantage of an adjustable rate mortgage is that, unlike interest-only loans, you’ll actually start paying off the loan immediately, building up equity in the home that you can borrow later, if needed. And you wouldn’t be saddled with thousands of dollars in unnecessary interest charges either.

Adjustable rate mortgages, however, come with some risk, as mortgage rates could go up. That’s why homebuyers often stick with the cost certainty offered by fixed rate mortgages, even though the interest rate on this type of loan tends to be higher.

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Don’t miss: This is the reason why Kevin O’Leary doesn’t hire ‘workaholics’

Enterprise Product Partners: Switch from AT&T for More Revenue (NYSE:EPD) Sun, 15 May 2022 19:48:00 +0000

thexfilephoto/iStock via Getty Images

AT&T(T)’s latest dividend has left some investors feeling trapped. Some market items and blankets add to the dismal feeling. You would think that investors are doomed to a big drop in income that would devastate their retirement. Worse still, the feeling of “no way out”. Nothing could be further from the truth.

If you have maintained the new dividend cut and also have Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD), there are several options here. Even if you have sold Warner Brothers stock, there are still several options.

Let’s start with the problem

Sometimes we are all too busy having fun or working, and then there are the grandchildren. The wallet just doesn’t get the attention it should. Then we wake up one day and find something like this:

AT&T Recent Dividend History

Recent history of AT&T dividends (AT&T website, May 14, 2022.)

We thought we were getting $52 for every hundred shares when the notice comes that we are now getting $27.75. It hurts.

Now, I’m a fan of the idea that AT&T will fix this problem over time. But if you need income (now) to live on and don’t like buying and selling because you have more important things to do, then it’s probably time to set aside some time for some due diligence to see what you can do to fix this rather painful result.

To the rescue

There are plenty of stocks currently paying more for the impatient. But many readers want “Sleep Well At Night” (SWAN) stock. Enterprise Product Partners (NYSE:EPD) is one such possible solution.

Enterprise Products Partners is an oil and gas industry mid-market company. Many consider midstream companies to be the utilities of the oil and gas industries. Enterprise Products Partners itself is investment grade and has been for some time.

Enterprise Products Partners Description of Investor Security and Income Boosts

Enterprise Products Partners Description of Investor Security and Income Increases (Enterprise Products Partners Investment Deck)

As noted above, the immediate result of the sale would be a quarterly distribution of $46.50 per 100 shares. This fixes much of the dividend decline that happened with the AT&T dividend, even though your money is no longer buying 100 shares of Enterprise Products Partners at the current price.

I was calculating that you could (very roughly) buy about 85 shares for every 100 AT&T shares sold with the Warner Brothers shares you received in the recent spin-off. This calculation will vary according to the various fluctuations in the price of the shares at the time it is printed. This would mean that your quarterly income would immediately jump to $39 percent stock for investing in one of the highest-rated midstream companies in the industry.

Admittedly, this does not take you back to where you started before the dividend cut. But you leave behind all the risks of a turnaround while granting you an immediate salary increase. Moreover, this company is in perfect health and has been increasing its well-covered distribution for two decades. As a holder, you can expect more well-covered payout increases in the future. This makes this company a “dividend aristocrat” even though it is a distribution (not a dividend).

What’s even better about it is that the K-1 form they send you will allow you to have a good portion of the income (based on past experience which does not guarantee the future) free. of tax. For some of you in the higher tax brackets, this can significantly increase the value of income.

At this point, you have more income that usually has a non-taxable component (although the K-1 part may be difficult for some who do their own taxes). The stability of the historical-based distribution is greatly improved by AT&T and Warner Brothers. In the meantime, the risk of “betting” on a reversal is ruled out.

The most important consideration is that management has invested in the units alongside you. Thus, they “eat their own cuisine”. This management has long had a very conservative reputation while growing the company steadily over the decades.

Mid-industry stocks (or common units) often follow upstream. So there is some price volatility. But the operating history of this stock makes it the very desirable SWAN stock discussed earlier. The increase in distributions is the icing on the cake. The best part is that the midstream industry crowd is seeing a comeback, much like the upstream oil and gas industry is currently. So there is still some upside potential in the stock, even though the price has risen well from the fiscal 2020 low.

Intermediate activity works with long-term contracts. Therefore, in any given year, there are not many expirations that need to be renegotiated. This is why this part of the business is known as the utility of the oil and gas business. Enterprise Products Partners has many paid businesses geared toward the growing natural gas industry. Much of what this company does can be (and to some extent already is) used in the rapidly growing hydrogen sector. Therefore, “green future” is not a threat to this company (no matter how it turns out).

The ethane component of natural gas is used to make plastic, which is very important for the green revolution, and natural gas itself is the preferred source for the rapidly growing hydrogen market. The reason for the preference for natural gas is that on a chemistry chart it is very easy to see that the carbon-hydrogen bond is weaker than the oxygen-hydrogen bond. Thus, using natural gas to make hydrogen is less expensive today.


Even if an investor waited until the “last minute” or “too late” to consider selling AT&T and Warner Brothers, there are ways to improve the situation. The one suggested above probably decreases the investment risk compared to the current situation. Indeed, AT&T has announced its intention to regain investment grade status. With Enterprise Products Partners, you have one of the strongest midstream companies in this industry (and it’s already investment grade).

The oil and gas sector has been out of favor for some time. But it is also to the benefit of the investor because the common unit price of Enterprise Products Partners will continue to rise as the industry returns to favor the market.

There are many possible income opportunities depending on the risk the investor wishes to take as well as the investor’s ability to monitor investments. But it’s up to the income investor themselves to gauge exactly what they can handle.

The key is that you are not “locked in” to the current situation as Mr. Market would suggest. There are many good solutions that will improve your income if that’s what you want to do right now. By all means, thoroughly investigate any new idea. But if you need to improve your income, now is the time to go.

The intrinsic value of Cognex Corporation (NASDAQ:CGNX) is potentially 31% higher than its stock price Sun, 15 May 2022 12:15:51 +0000

Today, we’ll walk through one way to estimate the intrinsic value of Cognex Corporation (NASDAQ:CGNX) by estimating the company’s future cash flows and discounting them to their present value. The Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model is the tool we will apply to do this. Patterns like these may seem beyond a layman’s comprehension, but they’re pretty easy to follow.

We generally believe that the value of a company is the present value of all the cash it will generate in the future. However, a DCF is just one of many evaluation metrics, and it is not without its flaws. If you still have burning questions about this type of assessment, take a look at Simply Wall St.’s analysis template.

Check out our latest analysis for Cognex

crush numbers

We use what is called a 2-stage model, which simply means that we have two different periods of company cash flow growth rates. Generally, the first stage is a higher growth phase and the second stage is a lower growth phase. In the first step, we need to estimate the company’s cash flow over the next ten years. Wherever possible, we use analysts’ estimates, but where these are not available, we extrapolate the previous free cash flow (FCF) from the latest estimate or reported value. We assume that companies with decreasing free cash flow will slow their rate of contraction and companies with increasing free cash flow will see their growth rate slow during this period. We do this to reflect the fact that growth tends to slow more in early years than in later years.

A DCF is based on the idea that a dollar in the future is worth less than a dollar today, so we discount the value of these future cash flows to their estimated value in today’s dollars:

Estimated free cash flow (FCF) over 10 years

2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 2027 2028 2029 2030 2031
Leveraged FCF ($, millions) $320.9 million $371.4 million $459.0 million $504.0 million $537.3 million $565.2 million $589.0 million $609.7 million $628.3 million $645.3 million
Growth rate estimate Source Analyst x8 Analyst x8 Analyst x2 Analyst x1 Is at 6.6% Is at 5.19% Is at 4.21% Is at 3.52% Is at 3.04% Is at 2.71%
Present value (in millions of dollars) discounted at 6.5% $301 $328 $380 $392 $393 $388 $380 $369 $357 $345

(“East” = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
10-year discounted cash flow (PVCF) = $3.6 billion

We now need to calculate the terminal value, which represents all future cash flows after this ten-year period. For a number of reasons, a very conservative growth rate is used which cannot exceed that of a country’s GDP growth. In this case, we used the 5-year average of the 10-year government bond yield (1.9%) to estimate future growth. Similar to the 10-year “growth” period, we discount future cash flows to present value, using a cost of equity of 6.5%.

Terminal value (TV)= FCF2031 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = US$645 million × (1 + 1.9%) ÷ (6.5%–1.9%) = US$14 billion

Present value of terminal value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)ten= $14 billion ÷ (1 + 6.5%)ten= $7.7 billion

The total value, or equity value, is then the sum of the present value of future cash flows, which in this case is $11 billion. To get the intrinsic value per share, we divide it by the total number of shares outstanding. Compared to the current share price of US$50.0, the company looks slightly undervalued at a 23% discount to the current share price. Ratings are imprecise instruments, however, much like a telescope – move a few degrees and end up in another galaxy. Keep that in mind.

NasdaqGS: CGNX Discounted Cash Flow May 15, 2022

The hypotheses

The above calculation is highly dependent on two assumptions. One is the discount rate and the other is the cash flows. If you disagree with these results, try the math yourself and play around with the assumptions. The DCF also does not take into account the possible cyclicality of an industry, nor the future capital needs of a company, so it does not give a complete picture of a company’s potential performance. Since we view Cognex as potential shareholders, the cost of equity is used as the discount rate, rather than the cost of capital (or weighted average cost of capital, WACC) which factors in debt. In this calculation, we used 6.5%, which is based on a leveraged beta of 1.074. Beta is a measure of a stock’s volatility relative to the market as a whole. We derive our beta from the average industry beta of broadly comparable companies, with an imposed limit between 0.8 and 2.0, which is a reasonable range for a stable company.

Look forward:

Valuation is only one side of the coin in terms of building your investment thesis, and it’s just one of many factors you need to assess for a company. It is not possible to obtain an infallible valuation with a DCF model. Rather, it should be seen as a guide to “what assumptions must be true for this stock to be under/overvalued?” If a company grows at a different rate, or if its cost of equity or risk-free rate changes sharply, output may be very different. Why is intrinsic value higher than the current stock price? For Cognex, there are three other things you should dig into:

  1. Risks: For example, we discovered 1 warning sign for Cognex which you should be aware of before investing here.
  2. Future earnings: How does CGNX’s growth rate compare to its peers and the market in general? Dive deeper into the analyst consensus figure for the coming years by interacting with our free analyst growth forecast chart.
  3. Other strong companies: Low debt, high returns on equity and good past performance are essential to a strong business. Why not explore our interactive list of stocks with strong trading fundamentals to see if there are any other companies you may not have considered!

PS. Simply Wall St updates its DCF calculation for every US stock daily, so if you want to find the intrinsic value of any other stock, do a search here.

This Simply Wall St article is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It is not a recommendation to buy or sell stocks and does not take into account your objectives or financial situation. Our goal is to bring you targeted long-term analysis based on fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not take into account the latest announcements from price-sensitive companies or qualitative materials. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.

‘I know he wants to have a Kobe-type outing where he scores 60’: Kevin Love addresses LeBron James teaming up with son Bronny for one last ride in Cleveland Sun, 15 May 2022 03:55:31 +0000

Former Cavaliers teammate Kevin Love addresses rumors that LeBron James is ending his career in Cleveland and his legacy with the franchise.

As Kevin Love continues to be reeling from being posterized by his good friend LeBron James in a regular season game, he wants the King to end his career in Cleveland, even if it means he won’t be. It’s only one game. The love reflected James’ emotional connection to the city and his hometown of Akron.

Akron kid James had a love-hate relationship with the city of Cleveland, thanks to him forming a Big 3 with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami. However, after winning two titles and Finals MVP, the King would decide to return home and keep his promise.

The former ROTY had one of the greatest homecomings in American sports history, and the rest is history. The superstar would deliver on his promise to deliver a championship to City after a more than five-decade drought in one of the NBA’s greatest Finals.

Also read: “My senior year will be played with my son, wherever Bronny is, it’s not a question of money at this time”: LeBron James wants the couple with his eldest to be the first father-duo son in NBA

Entering his 20th season, James is currently playing for the LA Lakers, who have been struggling lately. During the recent All-Star Weekend, James talked about playing his final season with his eldest son Bronny, no matter where he is.

Kevin Love reflects on LeBron James’ legacy in Cleveland.

James made a series of bold claims during a press conference at this year’s ASG in Cleveland. The four-time champion hasn’t held back, whether it’s playing with his son Bronny or the door not closing on his return to Cleveland.

“My last year will be played with my son. Wherever Bronny is, that’s where I’ll be. I would do whatever it takes to play with my son for a year. It’s not a question of money at that time.

The eighteen-time All-Star also spoke about a potential return to Cleveland.

“The door is not closed on that. I’m not saying I’m coming back and playing. I do not know. I don’t know what my future holds for me. I don’t even know when I’ll be free.

During a recent interview with Bleacher Report’s Taylor Rooks, former Cavs teammate Kevin Love addressed the rumors surrounding James’ return to Cleveland.

“I feel like it’ll even be cool if it’s one of those things like a one-match kind of thing,” K-Love said. Obviously I know he wants to have a Kobe type outing where he scores 60 and does his thing.

“He will have this statue. I can’t wait for it to go up, I’ll be there.

After playing four seasons with the King in Cleveland, including winning the iconic 2016 championship, Love knows the bond James shares with the city.

Also read: “LeBron James must come to Cleveland! Bring Bronny too!”: Kevin Love expresses desire to bring Lakers star and son home

James ending his career with Bronny in Cleveland would be the perfect farewell for the King, bidding farewell to one of the NBA’s greatest careers.

Cuba sees signs of recovery and announces “bold” measures to control inflation Sat, 14 May 2022 19:31:00 +0000

Cranes dot the skyline as the construction of luxury hotels and the renovation of historic buildings are underway, in Havana, Cuba May 16, 2017. Picture taken May 16, 2017. REUTERS/Stringer

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HAVANA, May 14 (Reuters) – Cuba’s struggling economy has started to recover in some sectors after two years of pandemic-induced contraction, but soaring global food and fuel prices require action” audacious” to control inflation, said Economy Minister Alejandro Gil. Cuban lawmakers Saturday.

Gil said Cuba saw a 38% increase in exports in the first quarter, boosted by the rise in the price of nickel, one of the main mineral exports. He said inflation had also slowed despite the upward pressure on the price of imports.

“We’re starting to see a clear and gradual recovery,” Gil said.

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But the price Cuba paid for imported goods jumped nearly $700 million in the first quarter, outpacing the country’s modest export gains, a predicament Gil attributed to “imported inflation” driven by rapidly rising prices of commodities such as fuel, corn for livestock feed and wheat.

US sanctions and soaring food and fuel prices, in part due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, have jeopardized Cuba’s timid recovery and threaten to deepen shortages, already forcing citizens to queuing for food, medicine and other basics. {nL2N2W20F1}

Tourism, the main source of foreign exchange needed to pay for more expensive imports, has also lagged behind government targets, complicating the recovery.

Gil did not provide figures on overall gross domestic product or explain how the first quarter results helped meet the government’s target of 4% growth in 2022.

A major sticking point, Gil said, continues to be Cuba’s unofficial exchange rate, which has climbed to five times the government rate of 24 to 1 in recent months, dramatically reducing the average Cuban’s purchasing power. .

To combat this, Gil said Cuba would begin selling foreign currency at a rate between official rates and black market rates, but would limit such transactions to certain public and private companies in an effort to boost the production of commodities. in high demand.

The economy minister said the more favorable exchange rate would support “a production that will then be sold to the population in national currency.”

Gil said citizens looking to exchange pesos for dollars would not be able to participate in the new exchange program, but the cash-strapped government was working towards that goal.

“These are bold and innovative measures. There are no magic bullets…that can solve all problems at once,” Gil said.

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Reporting by Dave Sherwood and Nelson Acosta; Editing by Mark Porter

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Progressive Regressive: The Progressive CEO indicates that a person’s perspective is determined by race and gender Fri, 13 May 2022 18:35:02 +0000

Progressive Regressive: The Progressive CEO indicates that a person’s perspective is determined by race and gender

Mayfield Village, Ohio – Progressive Corporation CEO Tricia Griffith today defended the company’s “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion” (DEI) policies by saying the opinions of individual customers can be assumed and predicted by selecting someone who looks like them to represent them.

Ethan Peck

At Progressive’s annual meeting of shareholders, held today in Mayfield Village, Ohio, Free Enterprise Project (FEP) associate Ethan Peck asked the board how he “could justify valuing the characteristics surface over merit” and why he prioritizes “skin color and reproductive organs” when hiring employees.

In response, Griffith claimed that for the company to fully understand its customers, it needed to hire employees proportional to the racial and gender demographics of its consumer base.

“We have a very clear vision to become the number one choice for consumers and agents,” she said. “To do this, we must anticipate and understand our customers. So we have to reflect our customers. We believe it is very important to have a fair and inclusive work environment, to reflect the customers we serve and that our leaders reflect the people they lead. We believe that “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion” is an important part of our growth and the right thing to do. »

Peck then went on to ask, “You said you had to ‘mirror your customers.’ Are you saying people with a certain skin color all think a certain way?”

“Nope!” replied Griffith. “We have to be able to represent that. You can’t put yourself in someone else’s shoes if you don’t have a representative organization that represents the country as a whole…. You could never know what it’s like to be a woman; I could never feel what it’s like to be a man, so we have to represent everyone.

After the meeting, EFF staff expressed disbelief at Griffith’s assumption that members of different groups based on race and gender think alike.

Scott Shepard

Scott Shepard

“The Progressive board has made a shockingly racist and sexist admission,” said FEP director Scott Shepard. “The answer to our question, and especially the follow-up, reveals that Progressive’s senior management not only believe that all band members think the same way, but that band members with superficial characteristics can’t even understand how members of other groups think.. The idea that only a white person can sell insurance to white people, or women to women, is the most blatant form of reductive racism and sexism. The progressive deserves better leaders – and wiser.

Peck agreed, responding:

This is why enlightened people do not believe in freedom of expression. Because they see everything through the lens of group identity and power, they don’t believe that anything can be communicated effectively between groups. It’s an incredibly regressive and divisive worldview.

Centuries ago the West understood that the ultimate minority is the individual and that we must transcend our tribal leanings to treat each individual accordingly. Progressive is using shareholder money to help undo this centuries-old progress.

Investors wishing to oppose racial discrimination and other “woke” policies infiltrating Corporate America should download FEP’s 2022 editions of the “Investor Value Voter Guide” and “Balancing the Boardroom” guide. Other action items for investors and non-investors can be found on FEP’s website.

Today’s meeting marks the 31st time the FEP has attended or attempted to attend a
so far in 2022. To schedule an interview with a member of the Free Enterprise Project on this or other issues, contact Jenny Kefauver at 703-850-3533 or [email protected].

Launched in 2007, the National Center’s Free Enterprise Project focuses on shareholder activism and the confluence of big government and big business. In the past four years alone, FEP representatives have attended more than 100 shareholder meetings – advancing free market ideals on health care, energy, taxes, subsidies, regulations, religious freedom, food policies, media bias, gun rights, workers’ rights and other important public policy issues. As the leading voice of conservative investors, she files more than 90% of all centre-right shareholder resolutions each year. However, dozens of liberal organizations file more than 95% of all policy-oriented shareholder resolutions each year and continue to exert undue influence on corporate America.

The activity of the EFF was covered by the media, including the New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today, Variety, Associated Press, Bloomberg, Drudge Report, Business Insider, National Public Radio and SiriusXM. FEP’s work features prominently in Stephen Soukup’s new book The Dictatorship of Woke Capital: How Political Correctness Captured Big Business (Encounter Books) and the 2016 book by Kimberley Strassel The bully game: How the left is silencing free speech (Hachette Book Group).

The National Center for Public Policy Research, founded in 1982, is a nonpartisan, liberal, and independent conservative think tank. Ninety-four percent of its support comes from individuals, less than four percent from foundations and less than two percent from corporations. It receives more than 350,000 people contributions per year from over 60,000 recent active contributors.

Sign up to receive updates by email here. Follow us on Twitter at @FreeEntProject and @NationalCenter for general announcements. To be alerted to upcoming media appearances by National Center staff, follow our Media Appearances Twitter account at @NCPPRMedia.

Disney’s (NYSE:DIS) box office will fund its digital plans Fri, 13 May 2022 12:02:33 +0000

Although not as bad as some of its competitors, The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) has still seen a drop of more than 30% since the start of the year. In a choppy market, investors tend to shy away from companies that rely on subscription entertainment.

However, Disney is a diverse player in this space and has even managed to increase its subscriptions. Yet with the growth comes a significant content bill.

Discover our latest analysis for Walt Disney

Profit results

  • Non-GAAP EPS: $1.08 (missed by $0.11)
  • Revenue: $19.24 billion ($800 million shortfall)

By segment:

  • Media and entertainment distribution: US$13.62 billion
  • Parks, experiences and products: US$6.65 billion

Revenue increase: +23.3% over one year

While revenue missed the mark, it’s critical to note that the company recognized $1 billion in reductions due to early license terminations for film and television content from prior years for use primarily on its direct services to customers. However, given that the media and entertainment segment contributes the vast majority of revenue, it was arguably a good move.

Disney+ added 8 million subscriptions against 5 expected, bringing the total to 138 million. The service will expand its global reach to 106 countries this summer, but content costs will increase by $900 million in the next quarter. The total content bill for this fiscal year is expected to reach $32 billion.

What is Walt Disney’s debt?

The graph below, which you can click on for more details, shows that Walt Disney had $54.1 billion in debt in January 2022, roughly the same as the previous year. It has $14.4 billion in cash, which offsets that, resulting in a net debt of about $39.7 billion.

NYSE: Dis Debt to Equity History May 13, 2022

A Look at Walt Disney’s Responsibilities

The latest balance sheet data shows that Walt Disney had liabilities of $30.0 billion due within the year and liabilities of $69.7 billion due thereafter. Meanwhile, it had $14.4 billion in cash and $14.9 billion in receivables due within a year. Thus, its liabilities total $70.4 billion more than the combination of its cash and short-term receivables. In absolute terms, that seems like a lot, but compared to the market capitalization of US$190 billion, that seems manageable.

We use two main ratios to inform us about debt to earnings levels. The first is net debt divided by earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA), while the second is how often its earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) covers its interest expense (or its interests, for short).

Walt Disney has a debt to EBITDA ratio of 3.8 and its EBIT covered its interest expense 4.3 times. This suggests that while debt levels are significant, we will refrain from labeling them as problematic. The silver lining is that Walt Disney increased its EBIT by 357% last year, although we must consider any comparison with 2020 to be heavily biased. You can check this free report showing analyst earnings forecasts for Disney’s future.

Finally, a business needs free cash flow to pay off its debts. Over the past three years, Walt Disney has created free cash flow of 18% of its EBIT, an uninspiring performance. This low level of cash conversion compromises its ability to manage and repay its debt.

Our point of view

Adjusted for license termination fees, Disney’s revenue report doesn’t look bad. Unfortunately, it would take extraordinary news to turn the stock price around in the current market environment.

While management has seen solid growth in Disney+ subscriptions, it’s worth pointing out that most of it comes from the Indian market, where the average revenue per user is well below that of the US market. On the other hand, the box office could provide a surprising boost in the current quarter as Doctor Strange, the latest installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, made a strong global debut earning at least 450 millions of dollars. So far, more sequels are planned for later this year, with Thor, Black Panther, and Avatar 2 potentially being big winners.

As for the balance sheet, the good news is that the company increased its cash flow to $1.77 billion, much better than $1.39 billion for the same period last year. With so many potential hits in the pipeline, we would be watching closely what the company does with that cash flow: reduce debt, restore the dividend, or go for growth. These decisions will be made by management.

The balance sheet is the obvious starting point for analyzing debt levels. But at the end of the day, every business can contain risks that exist outside of the balance sheet. To this end, you should be aware of the 1 warning sign we spotted with Walt Disney.

Sometimes it’s easier to focus on companies that don’t even need to take on debt. Readers can access a list of growth stocks with no net debt.

Simply Wall St analyst Stjepan Kalinic and Simply Wall St have no position at any of the companies mentioned. This article is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It is not a recommendation to buy or sell stocks and does not take into account your objectives or financial situation. Our goal is to bring you targeted long-term analysis based on fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not take into account the latest announcements from price-sensitive companies or qualitative materials.

Putin must leave the world stage Fri, 13 May 2022 03:16:41 +0000

Guest Writer

As brave Ukrainians use heavy weaponry provided by the West to push Putin’s forces into retreat, a unique global opportunity for the free world has arisen. America and its allies once again have the historic opportunity to lead the free world and defeat another hegemonic regime.

But do our leaders see this opening and possess the ability to seize it and win?

It reminds me of President Ronald Reagan’s powerful statement, “Here’s my strategy on the Cold War: We win, they lose.” This is the clear, principled strategy and vision we need in this age of renewed global conflict. Don’t just tie up Russian forces so they can continue to bomb innocent Ukrainians as part of a strategy to partition an already devastated country. Instead, pour weapons into Ukraine, deploy all possible sanctions, codify global alliances, and head for a Russian defeat. And yes, call for regime change. Putin’s barbaric actions against innocent civilians and other atrocities amounting to war crimes render the despot persona non grata on the world stage. A victory for Ukraine would deal a devastating blow to Putin and could be used as a catapult to weaken an aggressive China and a belligerent Iran.

But a radical shift in world politics is needed.

China chose poorly since Xi Jinping was advised by Putin before the invasion of Ukraine, and clearly gave his approval. Russia’s failed takeover of Ukraine has reignited global attention on China’s voracious desire to take over Taiwan. There is a sense of satisfaction in watching one autocrat overthrown by the incompetent actions of another. Xi will likely be forced to delay his own nefarious plans for Taiwan as a waking world watches China’s future actions. Now is the time to rally Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, as well as the countries of Southeast Asia to establish closer military, trade and economic partnerships with the States United and Europe.

We can guarantee that China is economically damaged if its expansionary policies persist, as 19% of global imports in 2020 by value transit through China, although this number has been declining over the past decade. We can ensure that its fall continues. Southeast Asian countries, including Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand and the Philippines, offer viable supply chain and export options and seek closer relationships with the ‘West. These countries are increasing their manufacturing and production capacities, and Japan, South Korea, Australia and Taiwan represent additional mature markets for enhanced business partnerships. Militarily, we should dramatically increase aid to Taiwan and provide a powerful deterrent to Chinese aggression. We can further strengthen military ties with our other Asian friends to deter China from further thoughts of aggressive behavior in the Pacific arena.

The Middle East presents yet another major challenge, and an opportunity. While Russia threatens Eastern Europe and China arms Asia, Iran continues to terrorize the Middle East. Missals have landed near our US Consulate in Iraq as Yemeni Houthi proxies drop bombs targeting civilians in Saudi Arabia and the Emirates.

Back home, the Biden administration is trying to broker a nuclear deal with Iran. And China and Russia are sitting side by side with the Iranians at the negotiating table to help determine an outcome acceptable to the Ayatollah. Our historic and longtime allies in the Middle East, including Israel, Jordan, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, are understandably outraged by the US position. Underscoring this wedge caused solely by this administration’s obsession with an Iranian nuclear deal, Saudi and Emirati leaders recently declined a phone call from President Biden as the Saudis began to consider trading their oil in Chinese yuan instead. only in US dollars.

America is best served by strengthening our relationships with our longtime friends in the region. Just as we work cooperatively with our European allies to confront Russia, we must fortify our Middle Eastern partners to isolate Iran. It’s an illogical notion that building alliances against Putin while destroying our Arab is somehow the best way forward.

Our global window of opportunity requires consistency, clarity, commitments and loyalty to longstanding alliances.

Finally, we must recognize and accept the fact that we are in a process of rapid change. and a far more dangerous world, which demands significant increases in our own military spending. Military force deters adversaries. Unfortunately, the recent budget submitted by the Administration only results in an actual increase of 1.5% over last year’s funding, according to the Wall Street Journal. The Air Force Association said last week that the Air Force “is now the smallest, oldest and least ready it has ever been in its 75-year history.”

America and its allies can win this new era of global conflict. But courage, consistency, clarity, alliances and recognition of a dangerous new world are essential.