Economic Outlook

More Millennials Own A Cannabis Stock Than Apple

Like Peter Lynch once said, consumers should stick to investing in what they know.

And apparently, millennials who use the RobinHood free stock-trading app have taken this advice to heart. According to Business Insider, shares of Aurora Cannabis, the Canadian cannabis producer, are now more popular among the app’s (mostly millennial) users than Apple….CLICK for complete article

How to See an Investment Opportunity in an Angry World

I was at a business event last week that highlighted the wants and needs of society. It probably comes as no surprise that the world right now is pretty angry. The discourse we see in politics, the polarization of left and right at the expense of the “Silent Majority” centre. This has caused three major stress points:

  • Anger needs “someone to blame”
  • Us vs Them to get “our fair share”
  • Polarizing figures that encourage “extreme behavior”

Canada is not immune to these challenges and they are increasingly becoming a problem for our society, our environment and our economy. What I worry about are things going on outside our borders that end up being an internal issue. Take for example our relationship with China and the US. Is Trump using an Extradition Treaty to trap a Chinese executive to use in trade negotiations and is China just coincidentally holding three Canadians after Canada arrested Ms. Meng Wanzhou on behalf of the US?

We are also seeing the transfer of consumer dominance of the baby boomers to millennials. Savvy corporations and political parties are tapping this new trend and you can see through the rise of social media and populist movements. Seems to me that the old ways of making money are out and new ways of making money are in. We see millennials wanting to invest in software as a service (SaaS), green technology versus their parents’ world of manufacturing and resources.

In an angry world, what can we do to mitigate that risk when it comes to our investments and financial portfolios? I would say follow the trends that matter to millennials and that will lead you to economic, social and environmental investing. They like to call it Socially Responsible Investing (SRI).

What if the BC and Alberta governments already understood this opportunity? They both have provincial programs that offer 30% tax credits to diversify their economies from manufacturing and resource sectors to the new world economy. Combine provincial tax credits with available federal registered funds like a RRSP, you could potentially earn up to a further 50% in tax credits (depending if you are at the highest marginal tax bracket) and have a downside protection of up to 80% on your original investment.

From an investment point of view, you have the perfect trifecta: growing economic trend, social licence from millennials (consumers) and government financial incentives to expand our new economy. Want to know more?

I look forward to sharing our strategy at the upcoming Michael Campbell’s 2019 World Outlook Financial Conference this weekend in Vancouver that highlights 2019: The Year for Effective Tax Planning.

 

Sincerely,

Craig Burrows

TriView Capital Ltd.

President & CEO

www.triviewcapital.com

Do We Need Quantum Leaps in Security?

There are many stories we have all heard about computer hacking, Identity Theft, and other bothersome or criminal exploits involving digital assets.  We all try to safeguard our systems and our data, but it is extremely difficult now that there is so much data and so many devices involved.  The amount of interaction and the amount of data has multiplied many times over with the introduction of Smartphones, Cellular Networks, and the Internet of Things (IoT).  Who had the foresight to realize that your refrigerator or your car might provide an easy way to hack into corporate or government networks?  We really do need to “protect” everything.  One clear illustration of how rampant computer hacks are becoming is the existence of “Collection #1”, which is a huge data folder that exposes nearly 800,000 email addresses and about 21 million passwords, all in one folder about 87 gigabytes in size.  Unlike breaches with criminal intent Collection #1 is just out there on a public hacking website for anyone to see – it is not for sale !!

Securing digital devices and data still relies on encryption, the process of recoding data using a digital “key” and unlocking that data only with the same identical “key”.  Individuals and corporations can maximize the effectiveness of encryption by using “strong” passwords, where you mix in capital letters, symbols, and numbers.  Cracking modern encryption keys is very difficult, as encryption has come a long way from the original method used by Julius Caesar of simply choosing a space offset for each letter of the alphabet eg: offset of “2” where every “A” is recoded as “C” etc.  There are only 25 possibilities for this recoding, so it is quite easy to crack a Caesarean code.  Data encryption has taken many leaps forward in the intervening years and is now considered to be quite un-hackable.  The easiest targets for hackers are written down passwords at your desk, and loose talk at the water cooler.

However, with Quantum computing now emerging, the ability to crack strong encryption keys is getting closer, simply because Quantum computers are so fast and powerful that they can try many guesses in a very short time.  This is the “brute force” hack, where given enough guesses, the correct key will eventually be found.  What currently might take 100 years of guessing with a fast, classical computer might take only 5 years with Quantum computing.

Quantum computers use the fundamentals of quantum mechanics to speed up computations, using flexible qubits instead of classical bits which can only be a ZERO or a ONE.  Qubits can be either, both, or something in between.  With quantum computing we should have the ability to design purpose built algorithms to solve specific problems, such as cracking codes, and designing un-crackable codes.  The current leaders in the Quantum computing space are IBM, Google, Microsoft, Alibaba, Intel, D-Wave Systems, and Rigetti Quantum Computing.  The race is on to see who will dominate with Quantum solutions for the broad marketplace.  In the next 10 years the number of Quantum computers will likely overtake the number of classical computers, ushering in a new era of computing, with speeds and power unimaginable just a few years ago.  This will require more stable hardware, commercial software development platforms, and large, fast, cloud computing capabilities.

Let Trend Disruptors be your guide to the future, as we continue to identify technology investment opportunities that can lead to financial success. Contact us at www.thetrendletter.com to find out more.

Stay tuned!

U.S. Trade Deficit With China Grows To Record High

China’s exports are down, and imports are down even further, which translates into a trade surplus for Beijing that could set Trump on an even more aggressive warpath.

With year-end 2018 data now in, China ended up with a $324-billion trade surplus with the U.S.—a trade surplus that is over 25 percent bigger than it was prior to Trump’s ascension to the throne in Washington, DC.

And that’s even with Chinese exports down. Based on Chinese data analyzed by the BBC, exports from China dropped 4.4 percent in December, compared to the previous year, and imports also fell 7.6 percent…..CLICK for complete article

Enjoy it While You Can Cannabis Canada, Your Edge is Already Eroding

Once America federally legalizes, Canadian producers ‘might as well be growing tomatoes’, insiders say.

Green Growth Brands Ltd., a U.S.-based cannabis retailer with a large footprint in Nevada, was all geared up to enter the Ontario market until an unexpected announcement in mid-December by the province placed a drastic cap on the number of retail licences issued for pot shops.

Citing supply concerns, the provincial government changed its rules from handing out more than 1,000 promised licences to a mere 25, which are being be chosen using a lottery system.

“We had hoped to have 25 stores in Toronto. But now, I don’t know if we’re even going to be in Ontario…Click here for full article.

What’s Up Inside Your Car?

We have written quite a lot about disruptive technology in new cars, whether they are production models, prototypes, or drawing board concepts.  As each new feature is unveiled, we usually hear some “WOWS” and also some skepticism until the feature is proven and accepted.  Once accepted, the new feature can quickly move into the “must have” category.  One current feature that is not well known is the “inward facing” camera, an innovation being considered by Cadillac, Tesla, Audi, and Volvo.  At this point, no car has this feature activated.  Clearly there are two sides to how this innovation will be viewed, and those two sides are becoming very familiar:

  1. this innovation is great because it gets to know me, help me, and make my life easier and more convenient
  2. this innovation is bad as it intrudes into my private space to discover, and potentially share or reveal, information that I consider to be private

facialrecognition

By now, we should all be aware of the trade-offs that technology can often introduce into our lives. Given the success of products like GOOGLE Home and AMAZON Alexa, it’s very clear that the masses are buying the “convenience” aspects of technology, even though there are many who caution us about the loss of personal privacy and the dangers of your personal information being used against you, such as Identity Theft. There are ongoing developments in the “information privacy” arena, and those technologies could also provide investment opportunities which we will assess carefully.  To get a sense of where we might be headed, click here.

So, what is it that an inward facing camera can possibly do, as it observes you and passes info along to all the vehicle systems?  For starters it can positively identify who is in the vehicle, especially in the driver’s seat, and activate all the preferred settings of this driver.  It could monitor the mood of the driver, and monitor health indicators, like glucose levels indicated in eye pupils.  For mood alteration the system could activate appropriate settings for the drive to work, like music or podcasts to motivate and energize, and on the drive home from work, activate calming music or meditative mantras.  If your health indicators go off the charts, the vehicle systems could notify your family, your doctor, the hospital, or 911 emergency services.  There are also some simple convenience issues that a camera could help with, like notifying you that items such as your wallet, computer, or phone are being left behind as you exit the vehicle.

As ever, the driving force behind many of these innovations is to discover and collect information about you, and of course there are all those Privacy Policies that each privacy invader wants you to agree to.  As mentioned above, the trade off is that they will give you some level of “convenience” and you will give them many personal insights about you and everyone else riding in your vehicle. Those personal insights will help them to advertise effectively and very soon try to sell you even more of the stuff they have designed, and will design, to make your life even more convenient.

If you want to see what vehicle technology may look like very soon, take a peek at the BYTON electric vehicle on display at the global technology conference in Las Vegas – a dashboard screen that is the size of seven I-Pads, a floating steering column screen for the driver, and a consul mounted screen for the passenger.  EV interiors have never looked as dazzling as this.

Bryton_dash

Let Trend Disruptors be your guide to the future, as we continue to identify technology investment opportunities that can lead to financial success. Contact us at www.thetrendletter.com to find out more.

Stay Tuned!