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May 19: Warren Buffet Secret Investment Revealed, Inflation Out Of Control, Silver Explodes (Recap ep278)

In today’s Recap, Marcello reveals Warren Buffett’s secret investment as Berkshire Hathaway makes a major move, becoming the second-largest holder in Chubb with a confidential stock purchase. Marcello also dives into the alarming surge in inflation, now requiring a family of four at least $177,798 to live comfortably in the US. Additionally, Marcello will discuss the explosive rise in silver prices, soaring 11.86% from $28.23 to $31.58, reaching its highest level since 2013.

The New York Federal Reserve reported that U.S. credit card default rates hit their highest level in nearly 13 years at the beginning of 2024,The central bank’s Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit showed the share of seriously delinquent debt, or at least 90 days behind, rose to +6.86% of outstanding balances in Q1 2024, the highest since Q2 of 2011. At the same time, auto delinquencies moved to +2.78%, the highest since Q2 of 2010.Those increases came even though total credit card balances fell to $1.12T, a decline of $14B. However, total consumer debt rose to $17.69T, an increase of $184 B, or 1.1%.
The U.S. social media stock Reddit rose +10.04% on Friday at $62.04, after Reddit announced a partnership with OpenAI. Reddit will gain certain artificial intelligence features through the deal, while OpenAI will have access to Reddit’s Data application programming interface for use in training AI models. The stock is up +51.76% over the past month, with a market cap of $9.22B.
The U.S. Labor Department reported that initial claims for unemployment benefits drifted back lower last week, after showing a spike in the previous period. 1st-time filings totaled 222K for the week that ended May 11, just 1,000 above the estimate & a 10K decline from the previous week’s upwardly revised total, which was the highest since late August. Continuing claims rose to 1.794 M, up 13K from the previous week & a bit above the estimate.
Japan’s economy contracted at an annualized -2% in Q1 of 2024. The GDP reading showed a deeper-than-expected contraction in the Q1 compared with a -1.5% contraction expected. The latest data could also likely jeopardize the Bank of Japan’s plans to raise interest rates.
Shares of Walmart rallied +6.99% on Thursday at $64.01, after the company reported adjusted Q1 earnings of $0.60 per share, topping the $0.52 expected from analysts. Revenue was $161.5B, beating the $159.5B estimate. Walmart stated it made big gains in e-commerce (+22%) & won over more high-income shoppers.The U.S. big-box retailer said it now expects to hit the high end or slightly top its previous full-year guidance. Walmart had expected net sales growth of 3% to 4% & adjusted earnings per share (EPS) of between $2.23 & $2.37. The stock is up +21.81% in 2024 & +28.10% y/y, with a market cap of $515.91B.
Singapore Airlines named the world’s best airline in 2023 by Skytrax posted a record operating profit of 2.73B Singapore dollars ($2.03B) for its fiscal year 2023 ending March 31, exceeding the previous record of SG$2.69 billion set last year. Net profit also hit a fresh record of SG$2.67B, +24% higher than a year ago. Full-year revenue increased 7% y/y, to SG$19.01B, driven by higher passenger revenue.
Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico is no longer in a life-threatening condition after he was shot in an assassination attempt when leaving a government meeting on Wednesday, a government minister reported. The gunman shot Fico, 59, 5 times, initially leaving the prime minister in critical condition & undergoing surgery hours later on Wednesday evening. Slovak media is reporting that the 71 year old shooter’s motive remains unclear.

Chileans are facing the most intense cold snap in nearly 70 years, bringing winter weather in the middle of autumn. It is the longest cold wave ever recorded in the capital of Santiago, at least since 1950 for fall. For Thursday, the meteorological office expected a minimum temperature of 1 degree Celsius (34 Fahrenheit) in the central Santiago area.The change was abrupt, within days of summer heat ending, mountains near the capital had snowy peaks.

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