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They’re keeping Kraft Singles, but are those even technically cheese?

– Jason

Hey there carnivores,

Markets were up on Tuesday, as tech’s strong week continued.

Today we’re looking at Kraft Heinz changing things up. 

Keep raging,

Jeff & Jason

Perfecting its Kraft

Have they tried tapping the 57?

Kraft Heinz, America’s preferred ketchup maker (seriously, only serial killers eat store brand ketchup), had been dying a slow, painful death (presumably related to the consumption of nitrates). That is until COVID-19 had people fiending for its “comfort foods.” Last quarter the sponsor of the Steelers’ stadium beat even the highest analyst earnings expectations.

But the food giant, which enjoys accounting fraud almost as much as Ken Lay, isn’t betting that America’s insatiable appetite for bologna will persist.

The Pittsburgh based company announced a new long term strategy, which includes as much as $2B in cost-cuts and a new vision for innovation and renovation going forward. Allow me to explain…

Innovation at its finest

In the past, Kraft would create new brands in response to customer trends. Like green ketchup. Under the new strategy, it will tweak existing products, like making its signature mac-n-cheese gluten-free. 

As for wieners, Oscar Meyer will get a facelift by way of new packaging and a simplified list of ingredients. Less dextrose, more paprika, pls

As a part of this focus on its “iconic brands” (using that term rather loosely), the company will eliminate 1.1k of its products by year-end, which amounts to 20% of its businesses. 

Along with overhauls in the procurement, manufacturing and logistics departments, K-H is hoping these moves result in cost cuts of $2B over the next five years, organic sales growth between 1% and 2%, and adjust EPS growth of 4% to 6%. Seems like a lot of f*cking work to move the needle the equivalent of a rounding error…

Shares rose sharply early in the session on the news but ended only slightly higher. 

The bottom line…

And if that wasn’t enough, Kraft also announced the sale of part of its cheese business to Lactalis for $3.2B. 

Kraft Singles (is that technically cheese?), Velveeta, and Philadelphia cream cheese will remain under the Kraft umbrella. 

The proceeds will be used to pay down debt.

☑️ Peacockin’ The Peacock is taking flight.

NBCUniversal’s streaming service crossed the 15M subscriber mark, up 50% from the 10M it had at the end of July. It’s a good start, but the ‘cock will have to pump those numbers up if it wants to hit the 30M to 35M user goal NBC set for it by 2024. 

What’s so great about Peacock’s success? Well, it just shows that users are willing to deal with commercials, as long as they get their streaming service for free. It also helps that they have all the episodes of ‘Seinfeld,’ but that’s neither here nor there. 

☑️ That didn’t last long. (… that’s what she said.)

JPMorgan sent some of its traders home after an equity trader at its Madison Ave. (NYC) office tested positive for COVID. The move comes less than a week after the company let its senior traders know they’d be back in the office by September 21st. Someone didn’t wash their hands for 20 seconds. Shame on you. 

It’s not the first time JPM’s Madison office was hit by the bug either. In April, the exact same floor saw 16 employees test positive. So they have the antibodies then? 

CEO Jamie Dimon wants his workers back, too, citing slipping productivity on Mondays and Fridays as employees WFH. I mean, it was summer, what did you expect, Jamie? 

☑️  Getting probed.

The US Justice Department is joining the Nikola party, joining securities regulators in trying to decide if Nikola misled investors. That’s never fun news to hear. At the center of the probe, is whether or not Nikola told investors it was further along than it was in creating a key technology that new model releases hinge on. 

Last week, a short seller published a report calling Nikola an “intricate fraud.” In response, Nikola reached out to the SEC to tell them about the report, saying that it welcomes the probe. Whatever you’re into, Nikola. Since the report was published, Nikola has lost more than 20% of its valuation as its stock price continues to slide.

☑️  Ship shape.

FedEx posted the highest quarterly revenue in its history, coming in at $19.3B, as everybody continues to get everything delivered to their homes amid the pandemic. During the summer, FedEx was slinging more than 31% more packages per day via Ground, driving profits up 60% in the quarter ended August 31. 

FedEx has clients like Dick’s Sporting Goods and Target to thank, with each retailer more than doubling e-commerce sales over the summer. The shipper also expects the gains to hang around, projecting an average of 100M packages daily by 2023. For reference, it had initially planned to hit that mark by 2026. Now, if they can just deliver packages in one piece, we’ll really be cooking with gas. 

 

Author: Jeff Bishop

One of the best traders anywhere, over the past 20 years Jeff’s made multi-millions trading stocks, ETFs, and options. He is renowned as an incredible trader with a deep insight and a sensitive pulse on the markets and the economy. Jeff Bishop is CEO and Co-Founder of RagingBull.com.

Even greater than his prowess as a trader is his skill and passion in teaching others how to trade and rake in profits while managing risk.

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