ItsMoneyMark Newsletter #102

Apple Inc, the next JP Morgan? 

Apple launches 4.15% Apple Card Savings Account

Well talk about hitting the market with disruption and further innovation this week. Apple launched earlier this week, via its Apple card, its savings account interest rate at an attractive 4.15%. 

Interesting features of Apple’s launch for this product, it requires no minimum balance or deposit. Additionally, you can set it up from the wallet app on your phone. All rewards, e.g., 3% cash back on purchases will go straight back to your account, which is the Apple card reward program. 

The savings account program is being launched via Goldman Sachs. To demonstrate how attractively high the Apple card savings account rate is annually, the national average yield in the U.S.A. on savings accounts is 0.35%. 

Market Moves:

  • Berger Paints Jamaica (JSE: BRG). Another company on the JSE, Jamaica Stock Exchange has made the jump to the JCSD, Jamaica Central Securities Depository for “registrar and transfer agent” services. The JCSD was appointed by Berger Paints Jamaica on March 20, 2023. 

To re-iterate, BRG is just one of several companies that has made an announcement of this nature recently. Remember, every time this happens, this means more revenue, and earnings for the JSE, Jamaica Stock Exchange, which is publicly traded, and, it is non-trading revenue, defined as non-cess revenue. 

  • Ciboney Group Limited (JSE: CBNY). The Company, CBNY, does not seem like it has much longer to go based on its remaining “cash holdings” unless there is some form of cash injection via a mechanism approved by the Board of Directors, or they finally get the company sold over the coming months (3 months or less), depending on the income tax recoverable line item. 

It remains perplexing that CBNY has not been sold to date to a new group of majority investors. One can only assume, that the majority shareholder, board of directors, are asking for an unrealistic valuation? 

By the numbers, for the 3rd quarter, CBNY reported a net loss of J$ 565k, and for the year to date, or 9 months, CBNY reported a net loss of J$ 2.04 million. To be clear, these are small losses in the grand makeup of things. The issue is for CBNY, cash & deposits is down to J$ 198k as of February 28, 2023, and they seem to have been paying expenses, fees via “income tax recoverable”. As at the end of the most recent quarter, this number closed at J$ 1.433 million, down from J$ 2.626 million, a year earlier. So, if they can recover that fully, they will have a longer shelf life than 3 months. 

CBNY’s net deficit is J$ 8.9 million, as of February 28, 2023. 

  • Jamaica Public Service Company (JSE: JPS). On the back of huge earnings, revenue, and net profit, comes another big corporate action announcement by the company. It is expected to be well received by the market, and we will see how it plays out in the coming weeks, months. 

The Company has appointed a new Chairman, in Mr. Damian Obiglio, effective April 8, 2023. Interestingly, and important to note, Mr. Obiglio was a former President & CEO of JPS, between 2006 to 2011. 

  • Margaritaville (Turks) Limited (JSE: MTL). The Company as expected comes flying back, and further improved their year-to-date profit position for the period ended February 28, 2023. This is for MTL’s 3rd quarter and year to date 9 months. 

MTL’s shareholder’s equity, cruised to a much stronger figure, to end the quarter at US$ 3.48 million, increasing from US$ 2.30 million, year over year. For the 3rd quarter, which included the bumper Christmas, Tourist season, MTL reported US$ 2.2 million in operating revenue versus US$ 974k, year over year, representing a surge of + 126%. MTL’s net profit alone for the 3rd quarter was US$ 725k versus a net loss of US$ 166k, in the previous year’s comparative quarter. 

MTL seems past being on their way now, and things are going well based on these quarterly and year to date numbers. For investor relations, although MTL reports their financials in US$ and therefore their earnings per share in US$, we encourage them, from ItsMoneyMark to include a line item with the earnings per share in JMD$ as well for analysts, shareholders as of February 28, 2023. 

  • Nordstrom Inc (US: JWN). The Company has been fighting off its activist battle in recent times. The result of that can either be good or bad for a company’s share price, market cap. Nordstrom, while rallying a bit earlier this week, has been trading closer to its 52-week low. 

Bottom line, Nordstrom added, former Nike executive, Mr. Eric Sprunk to their board because of the aforementioned. The issue Nordstrom has been facing, in recent times, is, slowing sales and declining profits, hence the scrutiny by activist investors, including notable activist investor, Mr. Ryan Cohen (bought a major stake in Nordstrom in February 2023). 

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