Good Afternoon,

I hope you enjoyed your weekend and were able to see the lunar eclipse on Sunday night. There is not a whole lot of love going on with McDonald’s leaving Russia, Spirit’s rejection of JetBlue’s hostile takeover attempt, and we’re not lovin’ the markets this week either.

Over thirty years ago, on January 31, 1990, McDonald’s opened its first restaurant in Moscow, Russia. A few months ago, when Russia invaded Ukraine, McDonald’s made the decision to temporarily close more than 800 of their restaurants. This week McDonald’s Corporation announced that they will leave Russia altogether. They have decided to sell the Russia burger chain business saying the “humanitarian crisis caused by the war in Ukraine, and the precipitating unpredictable operating environment, have led McDonald’s to conclude that continued ownership of the business in Russia is no longer tenable, nor is it consistent with McDonald’s values.” The restaurants will be “de-arched”, meaning that the locations will no longer be able to use the McDonald’s logo, name, or menu. The employees will continue to be paid until the sale closes. There are over 60,000 employees who worked in Russia, which made the decision to exit extremely difficult for the company. Russia is not lovin’ it right now.

There is no love lost between Spirit Airlines’ and JetBlue Airways’, as Spirit’s shareholders rejected JetBlue’s $3.3 billion hostile takeover this morning. Spirit’s board reviewed the offer and decided it was not in the best interest for the company nor their shareholders to accept the offer. Back in February, Frontier and Spirit announced a $2.9 billion acquisition to combine the two airlines. Shareholders are expected to vote on Frontier’s bid in June which is favored by the board. JetBlue had launched a hostile takeover bid and went straight to Spirit’s shareholders with an offer of $30 a share but stated that they were open to paying $33 per share if the board at Spirit entered talks and provided the data that JetBlue has requested. This is the second rejection of a JetBlue bid by Spirit’s board, after an unsuccessful $3.6 billion offer earlier this month.

It’s bear season on Wall Street, the economic data released earlier this morning wasn’t quite enough to keep them to their dens. They seem to have forgotten that the economy is not the stock market and vice versa. Continuing claims for unemployment benefits set a new low, so low in fact, the labor market hasn’t been this strong since The Dick Van Dyke Show finished its last season in the late 60s. Despite that, investors are worried nonetheless after a poor performance from U.S. retailers. With rising wages and transportation costs eating into profits. Starting in June, the Federal Reserve will start to decrease the size of the U.S. balance sheet – leaving the question of how big the bears’ appetites remain. With the summer season quickly approaching, demand around the board is still quite strong, keeping me optimistic for the near term. For the week, the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average are down -0.69% and -1.38%, and the Nasdaq is up 0.20%, as of today’s close.

Next week is our webinar on “Getting Good Leverage: Credit, Loans, & Borrowing” with our Chief Investment Officer, Benjamin Lau, CFA®, and our Senior Financial Planner, Christopher Whitaker, CFP®, AIF®. It will take place on Wednesday May, 25, 2022 at 1pm. Click here to register and learn more. The playback video for our last webinar on “A New Generation of Advising: Foundational Asset Management” is now available on our website to watch. Click here to watch the replay. Check out the recordings of our previous webinars on our website here. Feel free to share these links with your friends and family if you think they are topics they will find informative. In addition, to anyone who missed our newsletter from last week, click here to read it at your leisure.

As always, with the market volatility, please call our office if you would like to discuss any questions or concerns you may have regarding your portfolio or schedule a review. Our toll-free number is at (888) 253-0288 or email Michelle Campos at Michelle@apriem.com to schedule a meeting with your Wealth Manager.

Best regards,

Rhonda Ducote, AIF®
President 

Disclosures:

Advisory services offered by Apriem Advisors (“Apriem”), a registered investment adviser with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission in accordance with the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. Any reference to or use of the terms “registered investment adviser” or “registered,” does not imply that Apriem Advisors or any person associated with Apriem Advisors has achieved a certain level of skill or training. Apriem Advisors may only transact business or render personalized investment advice in those states and international jurisdictions where we are registered, notice filed, or where we qualify for an exemption or exclusion from registration requirements. For complete information about our firm, please refer to our Form ADV Part 2A, 2B and CRS at any time.

The information provided in this report should not be considered a recommendation to purchase or sell any particular security. There is no assurance that any securities discussed herein will remain in an account’s portfolio at the time you receive this report or that securities sold have not been repurchased. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. The reader should not assume that investments in the securities identified were or will be profitable.”

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