Issue 339 – 07/26/19

This week’s highlights:  Defending Millennials, Value Investing, and Peak Podcast

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Issue 339

by David Wells – Nashville TN

Happy Friday Everyone,

I hope you have enjoyed a day or two of cooler weather this week after the scorcher last week.

What I’m Reading Now:

  • Building a StoryBrand –  Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen by Donald Miller.   Very few books about marketing are worth the paper they are printed on – thankfully that is not the case here.  Miller has written an excellent (and quick) read about how companies can succinctly define their brand and present it in an intelligible way to a noisy marketplace.

Best,

David


Food for Thought:

Top Read(s) of the Week:  PsychToday – In Defense of Millennials – Credit WES

Why It Matters:  “Are millennials lazy and entitled? Or are they adapting to a changing workplace?”

Consider as well:

  1. NYT – Safe Deposit Boxes Aren’t Safe  When Philip Poniz opened Box 105 at his local Wells Fargo, he discovered it was empty — and that he was totally unprotected by federal law.
  2. BR – Just Some Kids from Northeast Ohio  LeBron James opened the I Promise School to help at-risk students. One year later, not only are they thriving but they’re also bringing the community with them. Could the school set a blueprint for others across the country?
  3. THR – “His Brand Is Excellence”: How Leonardo DiCaprio Became Hollywood’s Last Movie Star  In an age of pre-branded franchises and social media currency, DiCaprio is a Hollywood unicorn, able to gross hundreds of millions of dollars without wearing a cape, wielding a lightsaber or even having an agent.
  4. Verge – They said you could leave electric scooters anywhere — then the repo men struck back  The multibillion-dollar dockless scooter industry is going after a repossessor and a bike shop owner who have 10,000 scooters languishing in a tow yard.

Business/Economics:

Top Read of the Week:  OSAM – Value Is Dead, Long Live Value

Why It Matters:   The under-performance of value vs. growth stocks has been well-documented in the financial press.  But few have attempted to understand and then explain the root causes for the divergence, before attempting to articulate when the trend may reverse.  This piece is a fascinating look at the impact that technology cycles play on investment performance.

Consider as well:

  1. Fortune – Meet the A.I. Landlord That’s Building a Single-Family-Home Empire  Data science helped Amherst Holdings CEO Sean Dobson make a fortune in the housing crash. Now he’s deploying A.I. to profit from properties that most investors wouldn’t touch.
  2. NYT – D.I.Y. Private Equity Is Luring Small Investors  This isn’t going to end well…”Amateur investors are setting up high-risk, high-return deals on their own, but the key to success varies.”
  3. McKinsey – Repeat performance: The continuing case for programmatic M&A  New research confirms that companies that regularly and systematically pursue moderately sized M&A deliver better shareholder returns than companies that don’t.
  4. Fortune – How Charlotte Became the South’s Capital of Capital

Culture/Tech/Science:

Top Read of the Week:  NYT – Have We Hit Peak Podcast? 

Why It Matters:  If past experience (cough, blogs) is any indication, a shakeout is nigh…

Consider as well:

  1. Outside – A Rattle With Death in Yosemite.  When Kyle Dickman set out on a month-long road trip with his wife and infant son last spring, he was fueled by a carefree sense of adventure that had defined his entire life. Then he got bit by a venomous snake in a remote area of Yosemite National Park, and the harrowing event changed everything.
  2. SanFran Chronicle – How much is Apple’s spaceship headquarters worth? Now we have the answer
  3. MarieClaire – Missy Elliott: The Legend Returns  The artist, who’s ready to drop long-awaited new music, redefined hip-hop vocally and visually—and lifting up other artists only burnishes her superstar legacy.
  4. Vox – Meet the men obsessed with carrying all the right stuff  The “everyday carry” community is like if preppers met What’s in Your Bag?

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