Goldman Sachs just made a highly un-risky and entirely unremarkable call—they contend ecommerce will continue to grow at a good pace. However, within that contention, they also picked three stocks which represent the best way to play that growth. They prefer pure play ecommerce companies, and say that Amazon, Alibaba, and JD.com are the best names to buy in order to benefit from the continued rise of online shopping. According to Goldman, “Pure-play eCommerce companies like Amazon continue to benefit from greater access to consumer data and purchase history that enables not only compelling consumer experiences but also delivers efficiency and competitive benefits”.
FINSUM: These are certainly good ways to play ecommerce, but there are some other good angles too, such as logistics providers or warehousing stocks etc.
Oil took a phenomenal turn lower this week as news came out that half of Saudi Arabia’s oil production had been taken out via drone strikes. Yemeni’s took credit, but many suspect it actually came at the hands of Iran. Oil moved in a big way, up 20% at one point, representing the biggest percentage move in three decades. The drone strike is hugely consequential, as it removed 5% of the world’s daily oil supply. Airlines stocks were hit badly on the news, and Amazon may be the next big victim as higher oil prices mean higher shipping costs.
FINSUM: This big change is going to filter through markets in different ways, but the threat to Amazon seems real and very meaningful.
Amazon’s move towards one-day shipping is likely to be a big win for UPS and FedEx, but not in the way you think. A superficial glance might lead one to assume Amazon is going to increase one-day shipping contracts with the logistics providers, but that is not so. Amazon is building out its own network to do so. So how will it help FedEx and UPS’ beat-up stocks? The answer is that other ecommerce companies will need to increase their shipping speeds in order to better compete with Amazon, and in order to do so, they will be paying for a lot more one-day shipping through UPS and FedEx.
FINSUM: This is quite an interesting angle and one that makes a lot of sense. Walmart, Target, and many other big retailers will need to rely on UPS and FedEx to meet the one-day shipping challenge that will be required to stay competitive with Amazon.
A few weeks ago there was a great deal of press, and some investor anxiety, about simultaneous anti-trust probes being launched from the FTC and DOJ into America’s biggest tech companies. Before those efforts seem to have even gotten off the ground, the investigation seems to be backtracking. The head of the FTC said this week that the integration of Facebook and Instagram and WhatsApp will likely stymie any effort to break up the social media giant. The TFC chief also acknowledged it would be hard to get the courts to reverse a merger that the FTC itself had already approved, which is the case with Facebook and its acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp.
FINSUM: This seems like a pretty notable surrender after only a few weeks of work. We wonder why the FTC is changing its tone so strongly?
Fedex and Amazon are in the middle of an ugly spot. Anyone paying attention over the last few years will be aware of the “frenemy” relationship between Amazon and logistics providers, as the company offers a lot of business but hammers margins and is stealing away business with its own shipping network. Well, Fedex finally said enough is enough and decided against renewing its ground shipping contract with Amazon. Therein lies opportunity, however, as it should offer UPS a lot more business.
FINSUM: This is a bold move by Fedex. We expect it will hit revenue slightly, but probably not wound profits too badly. It could give UPS and USPS a boost.