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Friday 19 June 2020

Weekend Reading

Reading across disciplines is one of the best ways to improve our investment acumen. Here is a summary of some of the best articles I read this week.

I especially try to not post Corona related articles as that is all one gets to read in all traditional media.


If you like the collection this consider forwarding it to someone who you think will appreciate.

The innings that changed Indian cricket forever

One of the greatest innings of modern times began 18 minutes past 11 o’clock with no television camera to record its brilliance. A bareheaded Kapil Dev, in a full-sleeve sweater and droopy moustache, “squinted up at the sun”, wrote R Mohan in Sportstar, as he walked in to bat.

In his hands a Slazenger V12. On his mind thoughts of survival. A few minutes on, Yashpal Sharma’s dismissal left India at 17 for 5.

Walking in at No.7, Roger Binny remembers Kapil saying: “We’ve got 53 overs to go.”



A sneak peak at the developments of manufacturing artificial organs, at scale

Betting on success for growing organs, Kamen compares scaling their manufacturing to the way Silicon Valley turned an understanding of semiconductors into creating transistors so small and cheap that the tech industry now churns out phones by billions. “So I thought, why don’t we do the same thing for living tissues,” he says. “There ought to be a way to make a high quantity of them, a high quality of them, and at a realistic cost for the American public that’s in desperate need when they have an organ failure.”



The phenomenon called Robinhood

Robinhood took the trend to its logical conclusion — trades that cost $0 — and converted it into an opportunity to connect around money with members of a 90-million-strong generation. It was shrewd: Not only is it easier to reel in newcomers than to peel users away from other services, there’s an opportunity to make them lifetime customers, gradually adding new (fee-based) services. That’s why lots of businesses, including brokerage and financial firms, are interested in young HENRY — “high earners, not rich yet” — clients.



The Big Cycles - Ray Dalio's mega serial soap opera continues

I am not a fan of Ray Dalio. I think he tends to oversimplify complex situations and overcomplicates simple ones!!! Nevertheless, this storytelling on the long cycles is good learning. Also, would urge everyone to read Niall Fergusson's The Ascent of Money or watch the documentary on youtube (link: https://youtu.be/fsrtB5lp60s). The documentary does have some stunning visuals and shooting locations. Worth the 4-odd hours.



Cyber-mercenaries on the rise

Israel is a world leader in private cybertechnology, with at least 300 firms covering everything from banking security to critical infrastructure defense. But while most of these firms aim to protect companies from cyberattacks, a few of them have taken advantage of the thin line between defensive and offensive cybercapabilities to provide clients with more sinister services.

The privatization of this offensive capability is still in its infancy. But it raises broad concerns about the proliferation of some very powerful tools and the way governments are losing the monopoly over their use. When state actors employ cyberweapons, there is at least the prospect of regulation and accountability. But when private companies are involved, things get more complicated.

“If you want to take down a plane, if you want to ground air power, you don’t go through the front door, the cockpit,” said Ben Efraim, a former fighter pilot. “You go after the airport. … You go after the logistics systems. You go after the iPads the pilots take home.” There are no “stand-alone entities anymore—everything is part of a network,” Ben Efraim added.


Disclaimer: Abhishek Basumallick is the Head of the equity advisory www.intelsense.in for long term wealth creation and a pure quant focused newsletter at www.quantamental.in. The blog posts should not be construed as investment advice. Please do your own due diligence before investing.

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