TODAY’S FAYRE – Tuesday, 13th December 2016
“Godolphin Horne was Nobly Born;
He held the Human Race in Scorn,
And lived with all his Sisters where
His Father lived, in Berkeley Square. And oh!
The lad was Deathly Proud!
He never shook your Hand or Bowed,
But merely smirked and nodded – thus:
How perfectly ridiculous! Alas!
That such Affected Tricks
Should flourish in a Child of Six!
( For such was Young Godolphin’s age).
Just then, the Court required a Page,
Whereat the Lord High Chamberlain
( The kindest and the Best of Men),
He went good-naturedly and took
A Perfectly Enormous Book Called
‘People Qualified to Be Attendant on His Majesty,
And murmured, as he scanned the list
(to see that no one should be missed),
“There’s William Coutts has got the Flue,
And Billy Higgs would never do,
And Guy de Vere is far too young,
And…..wasn’t D’ Alton’s Father hung?
And as for Alexander Byng!-….
I think I know the kind of thing,
A Churchman, cleanly, nobly born,
Come let us say Godolphin Horne?”
But hardly had he said the word
When Murmurs of Dissent were heard.
The King of Iceland’s Eldest Son Said,”
Thank you! I am taking none!”
The Aged Duchess of Athlone
Remarked in her sub-acid tone,
“I doubt if He is what we need!”
With which the Bishops all agreed;
And even Lady Mary Flood
( SO kind, and oh! So REALLY good)
Said, “No! He wouldn’t do at all,
He’d make us feel a lot too small,”
The Chamberlain said,
“ Well, well, well! No doubt you’re right…..One cannot tell!”
He took his Gold and Diamond
Pen And scratched Godolphin out again.
So now Godolphin is the Boy
Who blacks the Boots at the Savoy”
Hilaire Belloc – poet – 1896-1953
Perhaps I am just getting tired as we head towards Christmas, but I get the impression that much of our press and TV seem to want to put up the white flag and surrender to the EU. Hang on Folks, we have not started to negotiate yet and the EU is hardly flourishing. Even Chancellor Hammond seems to have gone soft and the normally uncompromising David Davis seems unusually accommodating!
It was so very sad to hear of the death of Walter Swinburn at the tender age of 55. He arguably rode two of the better Derby winners in recent decades – ‘Shergar’, who burned up the track and ‘Lammtarra’ who won a shade cosily. ‘Shahrastani’ should never have won in a month of Sunday’s, had Greville Starkey engaged his brain when riding ‘Dancing Brave’ for Prince Khalid Abdullah, trained by Guy Harwood, which must have been the very best horse never to have got his nose in front in the Derby. Walter made all and Starkey stoked his mount up too late to land the spoils. There were some very unhappy punters on Epsom Downs and in the betting shops that day! Greville Starkey is considered by many to have been with Swinburn the most talented jockey never to have been champion. He died in 2010 from cancer at the age of 70.
Ironically both jockeys were to team up with Sir Michael Stoute (Starkey as an assistant). Sir Michael was inspired in giving Walter his head as stable jockey when he was just nineteen. He was very much a big race rider with a wonderful pair of hands. He was none too happy to be riding at Bath on a Monday afternoon. He also won the Arc de Triomphe on ‘All Along’, owned by Daniel Wildenstein and trained by Patrick-Louis Biancone, before he set off to train in Hong Kong. RIP
Mme Lagarde appeared in the dock yesterday over the Bernard Tapie scandal. If found guilty, the penalty for this misdemeanour could be a £15k fine and a year in the slammer! In the unlikely event of being found guilty, rest assured it won’t happen. The Establishment will look after her!
The ‘Trump Dream’, which seems to have plenty of momentum behind it, took a pull yesterday after an almost super-human rally in terms of day where gains were posted. Markets never go in a straight line and it was almost a question of call for the Rennies, such was the level of temporary indigestion. Though oil blazed the trail, thanks to Non-OPEC countries agreeing to cut production by 500k barrels a day, with Brent up to $55 a barrel, which benefitted Shell (+2.65%) and BP (+1.38%), mining stocks saw profit takers take some risk off the table. There is work to be done before finally agreeing to a price for 20th Century Fox to buy Sky. Politicians want their two cents worth. We need guarantees for the 23k workforce at Sky and over 120K of ancillary workers in other companies. There must also be no interference in terms of editorial, with a neutral political stance being maintained. There may of course be a slight price adjustment, though the Murdoch clan will be reluctant. The shares eased yesterday by 2.65%.
In New York, ahead of the FOMC meeting the Street of Dreams put in a rather anaemic performance with the DOW+0.20, though the S&P eased by 0.11% and the NASDAQ by 0.59%. Banks and tech were friendless in the ring, but phones were in the ascendency. The markets were still trying to digest the appointment of Rex Tillerson, the Exxon Mobil CEO as Secretary of State. With his business relationship with Russia this appointment could be inspired or an unmitigated disaster. The Viacom/CBS merger talks have been called off. Lockheed Martin’s share price dropped by 2.5%, thanks to unhelpful comments made by President-Elect Trump.
There have been other nuggets of news such as UniCredit close to agreeing a rights issue with 14,000 jobs going. InBev have agreed to sell some brewing operations to Japan’s Asahi. Commerzbank have been told by ECB authorities to get its Tier One capital ratio or their equivalent up to 18.5%.
Asia enjoyed a rather sedentary session with the ASX closing down 0.32%. Conversely the NIKKEI was up 0.5% as the Dollar fell in value a tad. The Chinese markets were very much in a lack-lustre frame of mind – Shanghai Composite -0.07% and the Hang Seng 0.06% as we head towards the close. The FTSE 100 at 8.50am was down 2 points in moribund trading conditions. Standard Life was down 3% and Tesco was 2.5% lighter. UK Inflation figures are out at 9.30am. Having under-reached last month at 0.6% on an annualised basis, today we expect the drop in the value of the Pound (18% against $ and 13% against €0 to start filtering through in terms of food and raw materials, to reach 1%.
UK Companies posting results this week – Tuesday – Carpetright, Bellway, Wednesday – Dixon Carphone, Micro-Focus, John Wood, Thursday – Petrofac, Tungsten, PZ Cussons, Go-Ahead, Centrica, Astra Zeneca pipeline, Friday – Trinity Mirror
US Companies posting interim results this week – Tuesday – Hollywood Media Corp, Wednesday – Jay Global, Thursday – Oracle, Adobe Systems
Economic data this week – Tuesday – UK House Prices, UK Employment data ZEW, Wednesday – FOMC, Thursday – MPC Meeting, UK Retail Sales, CBI Industrial order expectations, Friday – US Housing starts & Trade Balance
Market Commentator – Panmure Gordon & co D +44 (0)20 7886 2775 Mobile – 0044 7788 144 877 Panmure Gordon & Co One New Change | London | EC4M 9AF
David Buik]]6 Market Commentator
D +44 (0)20 7886 2775 Panmure Gordon & Co One New Change | London | EC4M 9AF | United Kingdom www.panmure.com