The stock market can be an unpredictable and risky place to invest your hard-earned money into, but it also has the potential of producing huge rewards if done right! Anyone interested in investing their money may want to consider purchasing shares of “penny stocks.” These stocks are usually low-priced, so they don’t have as much risk associated with them as other share prices. In recent years, penny stocks have been growing in popularity because of the enormous returns they offer, which is why people are investing their money in them more and more. This blog post will focus on what penny stocks are and the best companies to invest in.
Arguably the most important man in America right now isn’t Joe Biden. It’s Jay Powell, Chairman of the Federal Reserve. September is traditionally a month that underperforms the market. Since 1945, according to CFRA, the market has declined by an average of 0.56% during September. The Stock Trader’s Almanac also claims that the S&P 500 averages a 0.4% decline in September, the worst of any month. As we’re firmly in the back half of September, we’re essentially in the eye of the hurricane- i.e., the part of the month where most of these losses take place. This September, though, appears to be even more gloomy than usual. Despite COVID numbers that appear to be receding, the virus is still here. It continues to evolve while significantly threatening economic recovery. Meanwhile, we could be seeing a Lehman Brothers situation play out right before our eyes in China, with Evergrande on the verge of defaulting on $300B of debt. But beyond this, Jay Powell has his hands full within the country. Inflation is still hot, and despite what could be encouraging progress, the U.S. has a debt ceiling crisis that could cause the country’s first default in history. Meanwhile, we have a labor market that is nowhere near recovered amid many questions about how hawkish or dovish the Fed needs to be. On Monday, September 20, the indices saw their worst sell-off in months. It was the Dow’s worst sell-off since July, with a dip as much as 972 points, or 2.8% on the day’s lows. Both the S&P and Nasdaq also saw their worst declines since mid-May. Yet after that, the Fed’s September 21-22 policy meeting put investors more at ease. Tapering is inevitable, but the question is how aggressive. Interest rate hikes are also not imminent, and investors like that. The market clawed back much of Monday’s losses, largely thanks to Jay Powell’s statement. Yet we’re nowhere near out of the clear. The Fed has had its hands full this month and will continue to do so. So let’s go through this challenging September, and break down what the Fed’s had to deal with and what it should still continue to deal with.
What Was Decided During the Fed’s Latest Policy Meeting?The Federal isn’t ready to outright stop its stimulus or asset purchasing program just yet. However, it may change soon and gradually. According to the Fed’s policy update from September 22, if the economic recovery continues to progress as it anticipates, the Fed “judges that moderation in the pace of asset purchases may soon be warranted.” If you had to place a bet, that would mean that tapering could likely begin as soon as November or as late as January. Yet, according to Seema Shah, chief strategist at Principal Global Investors, the market may have already priced in a policy change. The most important announcement, though, was arguably the Fed’s thoughts on hiking interest rates. It flat-out said that rates could rise as early as next year instead of waiting until 2023 as previous forecasts called for. Investors clearly appreciated this announcement, as all of the major indices saw some nice gains. The S&P 500 adding nearly 1% and snapped a four-session losing streak. The Dow also added more than 300 points, or 1%, while the Nasdaq rose by roughly the same. Yet, we are nowhere near in the clear, and the Fed still has many issues to deal with. At home and abroad.
1. Does the Federal Reserve Have an Ethics Problem?All eyes were on the Fed’s policy meeting this week and for a good reason. But quietly, there was a dark cloud in the background involving the Fed’s ethics. Throughout history, the Fed has had a relatively squeaky clean reputation. However, all of that could come crashing down based on several news reports over the last few weeks. These reports indicate that Fed officials have been trading stocks and bonds that could be influenced at least indirectly by their policy decisions. So as already anxious investors attempt to digest the Fed’s policy moves, this only adds to the confusion and mistrust. Primarily because the Fed depends on credibility. “I think it’s embarrassing for the Fed. It had such a squeaky-clean reputation,” said Greg Valliere, chief U.S. policy strategist at AGF Investments. “But I don’t think it’s going to change policy in any regard at all. I think it will be rearview mirror pretty soon, assuming there’s no other shoe to drop.” “The ethics here look bad. They should have known better,” said Joseph LaVorgna, chief economist for the Americas at Natixis and former chief economist of the National Economic Council during the Trump administration. “Once you lose that moral authority, it’s a problem.” A Fed spokesman also added that Jerome Powell ordered Fed staff “to take a fresh and comprehensive look at the ethics rules around permissible financial holdings and activities by senior Fed officials.”
2. InflationInvestors over the summer assumed that the Federal Reserve would taper sooner rather than later, thanks to spiking inflation. The central bank, in their eyes, would have no choice, or else the economy would ultimately overheat. Yet, signs show that inflation may either be cooler than expected or may have peaked. The August CPI report, for example, came in way less hot than anticipated and at its lowest level since January. According to Slate, “Headline inflation increased only 0.3 percent during August, below what economists had projected and just one-third of the blistering pace it set in June. If you take food and energy prices out of the picture, the deceleration has been even more rapid; so-called core inflation inched up by 0.1 percent in August, down from 0.9 percent two months ago.” Not to mention, the cost of living rose at its slowest pace since January, in part thanks to the falling cost of used cars and travel. Airline and hotel prices also took a tumble thanks to the Delta variant.
3. Labor MarketOver the past few months, Jay Powell said that more progress was needed in the labor market before drastic policy moves were made. The Federal Reserve already exceeded its inflation goal, and its employment goal, according to Jay Powell’s September 22’s presser, is “all but met.” “For me, it would not take a knock-out great [September] employment report,” Powell added, even though other members of the policy committee still wanted to see more improvements. The public has long expected the Fed to eventually taper its stimulus as the recovery progressed. However, based on a disappointing August jobs report, we may be nowhere near a full labor recovery. Only 235,000 positions were added vs. the estimated 720,000.
4. Debt, Debt, and DebtWe have two major debt crises right now- one in China and one in the U.S. In China, there’s Evergrande, which could be China’s Lehman Brothers event of 2021. China Evergrande Group, once the second-largest property developer in the world’s second-largest economy, is on the verge of defaulting on $300B+ worth of liabilities. You probably think this is great for the U.S. economy because, well, it’s China. Our biggest rival. But, not so fast. This could drastically affect U.S. monetary policy and rile world markets in a way not seen since 2008 when we had Lehman Brothers and Bear Sterns in a similar predicament. The ripple effects could be catastrophic for investors worldwide. If the supposedly “too big to fail” Evergrande were to collapse, it could spread to other property developers and create systemic risks for China’s entire banking system. When the world’s second-largest economy sees its financial system collapse, there will be effects. Any default by Evergrande could also pose a risk to the international bond markets as foreign investments are essentially the reason why Evergrande got as big as it did. Yet, there is some potentially good news on the horizon. Evergrande will meet a crucial debt deadline on September 23rd and pay the interest due on one of its bonds. However, this crisis is nowhere near over as the company still has more colossal debts to repay. Meanwhile, in the U.S., we have some debt issues of our own. There is a fierce political debate on raising the debt ceiling. House and Senate members are scrambling to find a way to raise the debt ceiling before it’s too late. If this doesn’t happen, not only will the government will shut down. According to the U.S. Treasury Department, we will entirely run out of cash by some point in October. It would also mark the first default in U.S. history, yet another stain on a country that already looks like a falling empire struggling with its image. “It’s just very important that the debt ceiling be raised so that the United States can pay its bills when they come due,” Jay Powell said. He further adds that the damage to the economy and financial markets would be severe if there were defaults. Most importantly? Powell emphasized that “nobody should assume the Federal Reserve could fully protect the economy against such a failure.” If this default actually happens, it would shock the American economy and take years to recover from. Moody’s claims that a default would wipe out nearly 6 million jobs and lift the nation’s unemployment rate to almost 9%. It would also cause a crash that could see the market lose up to ⅓ of its value. Yet, the market does not seem to believe that it could actually happen. Mr. Market has seen this song and dance before in 2011 and 2013. However, the Federal Reserve could be singing a different tune. And it doesn’t sound good.
What’s On The HorizonThe Federal Reserve is preparing to take its first steps to normalize its monetary policy again. Yet, there is no unanimous consensus on what moves to make. There are both doves and hawks in the Fed. According to Goldman Sachs, six officials have spoken publicly in favor of tapering asset purchases. In contrast, six have spoken out against it. Powell has said numerous times that he expects inflation to be transitory and price pressures to recede reasonably soon. However, at least six Fed officials have contradicted him, including Governor Christopher Waller. Not to mention, Jay Powell’s term is set to expire in February. Although President Biden is expected to nominate Powell again, this is far from a foregone conclusion. Powell is a Republican, and Biden could opt to go with someone that more goes with party lines. Which poses two questions. One- is now the time to add exposure to gold, commodities, and TIPS? Two- does the Federal Reserve know what it’s doing? At least it’s thinking about starting a digital currency!
If you have ever wanted to get started on investing and stock trading you have almost definitely heard that indexes are the place to start. Indexes can be split into two categories: mutual funds and exchange-traded funds. Both types share a lot of commonalities. The main difference however is the way these assets are managed. ETFs resemble stocks as they can be traded throughout the day; mutual funds on the other hand can only be purchased at the end of each trading day based on an established price. In addition, compared to ETFs, mutual funds are more actively managed by a fund manager which picks and chooses the best investment opportunities to put your money into. So why are indexes useful? Well, mutual funds and ETFs are based on a type of investment where funds from various investors get pooled together to purchase a variety of stocks and other investments. This means you can now effectively invest in hundreds of the largest companies, such as Apple, Microsoft, and Facebook, without needing to spend thousands of dollars. With the ability to invest a little and the benefit of all your fund being diversified to hundreds of different locations, you also minimize your risk. You also typically do not need to worry about day-to-day fluctuations nor volatility within a single company. Indeed, a hit in an individual industry (like tech) will not affect such funds as much as investing in technology companies individually yourself. If there is one specific industry you would like to invest in specifically but still want the benefits of diversification offers, there are specific indexes that track and invest in just those companies as well. For example, iShares Global Clean Energy ETF tracks investment results of an index made of global equities in the renewable and alternative energy sector. Although this still has diversification as an underlying benefit, by focusing on a single industry it is more prone to sudden peaks and troughs compared to a fund that invests in opportunities in a variety of industries. In the end this is a personal decision which involves risk tolerance and outlook.
There is no need to do massive research when you invest in fundsAnother point to consider is that there is also much ease in investing in mutual funds and stock market indexes. Specifically, you do not need to do massive amounts of research about dozens of individual stocks. Comparatively, there are some “gold standards” for index funds and mutual funds, such as the “S&P 500.” If you decide to dollar cost average, which is an investment strategy where small regular sums are invested, you also have to worry less about “timing” the market. Finally, it is much more predictable than some other investments. For example, the average annual return since its inception in 1926 through 2018 is 10-11%. Although they still have fluctuations, such indexes and funds are great places to start for someone that may want an investment opportunity with low time commitment and for the long run; however, as with any investment, ensure you do your own research!
Investing in companies usually takes place via stocks and shares, however, extremely low-cost stocks have a separate name of their own: Penny Stocks. These stocks are generally for the smaller companies with smaller market capitalization and can be highly volatile. Their price can double or sink to nothing within a short time.
Penny stock companies are generally smaller and troubled with low market capitalizationPenny stocks can have multiple definitions. For some, they are stocks priced under five dollars, and for others, they are stocks priced under one dollar. These low prices of shares can allow traders to buy a large number of stocks for a “good” and low price with the optimism that a little growth in the share price can give them large returns. These penny stock companies are generally smaller and troubled with low market capitalization. Although some can be found on NYSE and Nasdaq, most of these penny stocks are not available on major trading stock exchanges and are traded OTC.
Most stocks and shares are heavily regulated by the SEC to ensure trading is being done legally and ethicallyMost stocks and shares are heavily regulated by the SEC to ensure trading is being done legally and ethically, which provides fair trading to the investors. However, the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, that regulates and enforces these laws against market manipulation has an exception for penny stocks. Penny stocks are usually priced much lower, even in the cents, than the established stocks. These companies, since their stock prices are under five, are not required to fill out pink sheets with the Securities and Exchange Commission, exempting them from being regulated by the SEC. Due to the lack of regulation and law enforcement, the prices can fluctuate, even drastically at times, and are more susceptible to illegal market manipulations. Low regulations also cause trouble for the people who want to invest in penny stocks due to the lack of security of the prices and potential pumps-and-dumps in the market. Pumps-and-Dumps are illegal tactics to raise the share price by either buying a large amount or creating an interest to have others buy it, then dumping or selling the shares which ultimately leads to a downfall of the share price.
The lack of liquidity and low trading volume in penny stocks is also a key characteristicThese penny stock companies are fairly new and less covered in the media. With no long-term historical trends to predict their future, nor media coverage on the company, these stocks lead to a whole gamble with investing since false claims could be made with little verification power. The lack of liquidity and low trading volume in penny stocks is also a key characteristic. This means that investors can potentially have a hard time finding an accurate stock price that reflects the market. If you bought a penny stock at 20 cents and the market value of that is now one dollar, you won’t be able to gain the profits if there isn’t an investor willing to pay a higher price to buy them. For well-established company stocks, where the volume is high, there would be an investor usually available willing to buy at the market price or higher. These new company penny stocks investors can see potential wealth; however, due to the lack of information, the chances of market manipulation, and little to no regulation, penny stocks are a bit of a gamble. For more information on penny stocks, dividend stocks and or other information on the stock market, we suggest you visit our blogs section to uncover the latest news and information to help develop your investment portfolio.
Money sitting in your bank is not the way to grow your wealth. We strive to get a paying job by working hard and improving ourselves to reach a financially free life; however, having your hard-earned money sit in the bank for years is doing more harm than you think. Inflation is known to be the silent killer of wealth. Each year, due to inflation, your wealth goes down in value by the inflation percentage, and eventually adds up over the years. Why earn so much when you are going to lose it? So how do you avoid this? Simply by investing! For example, to save a million dollars by the average retirement age, 65, you would have to set aside over $2300 every month for 35 years without investing. However, if you invest it with a 5 percent return for 35 years, it would take less than $900 a month to get to a million dollars. Investing saves you almost 3 times as much to set aside per month! Though investing seems complicated, it can be fairly simple. Once you have your income covering your bills, groceries, and savings, you can take a portion of the remaining income to invest for your future. With investing, the earlier you start the better it is! Even a 5-year difference can make a huge impact on the amount you gain at the start of your retirement. There are many different ways to invest, from buying shares, property, or fixed interest to name a few. Shares or stocks help your initial investment grow over time. You are essentially investing in companies by buying their company shares. Of course, the prices can go lower than your price at investment, which is why there should be your research before you put your money in that company. Researching their history, their plans, and their industry is a great start to do your due diligence to ensure you are using your money the right way. Some companies can also give a portion of their company to their shareholders via a dividend, which can make a great passive income coming either quarterly or annually.
Investing money in real estate can give you a high return in the long termAnother type of investment is via real estate. Investing in homes, apartments, or rentals can potentially give you a high return over the long term. There is always a risk where the property value falls for various reasons, however, with research on the economy and the real estate market, you can navigate to attain positive returns. A third form of investing is by fixed interest, for example, bonds. This is where a group, for example, a company, borrows money from the investors like you and pays you back with the interest in return. This type of investing is generally a lower risk than property or shares and can be sold fairly quickly without much loss. As we always mentioned at Investors Scene. Investing doesn’t have to be complicated. Start slow with safe shares using platforms like Wealth Simple. Put a few dollars away on a regular basis. Once you have amassed enough savings, you can build your way up to the real estate and explore other opportunities. Regardless of the form of investment, any investment is better for your wealth than diminishing your wealth by keeping it in your bank.
This blog is a continuation of our previous blog post where we discussed the advice of billionaire businessman David Tepper on the best dividend stocks, individuals should research and consider for their portfolio. We continue the previous blog below:
Dividend Stocks — Opportunity for investorsThere are lots of reasons to buy dividend stocks. Dividend stocks present opportunities for investors to get consistent payments even during rocky market periods. Dividends offer a good hedge against inflation, especially when they increase in value over time. They are also tax-advantaged, unlike other forms of income.
- Shell Midstream Partners, L.P. (NYSE: SHLX). Shell Midstream Partners is a company that owns and operates pipelines and other midstream and logistics assets. The company has a dividend yield of 11.57%, or $1.84 per share.
- Cementos Pacasmayo S.A.A. (NYSE: CPAC). Cementos Pacasmayo S.A.A. is the biggest cement company in northern Peru, operating three plants out of Piura, Pacasmayo, and Rioja. The stocks have a 13.12% dividend yield. The company has a market value of $720 million, and its stock gained 7.63% year to date.
- USA Compression Partners, LP (NYSE: USAC). USA Compression Partners, LP is one of the biggest providers of natural gas compression in the USA. The company has gained 19.09% year to date and has a market value of $1.5 billion. Its dividend yield is 13.32%, or $2.1 per share.
- Cornerstone Strategic Value Fund, Inc. (NYSE: CLM). Cornerstone Strategic Value Fund, Inc. is a closed-ended equity mutual fund managed by Cornerstone Advisors, Inc. The stocks have a dividend yield of 16.62%.
- AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T). AT&T Inc. is one of the safest dividend stocks to invest in. The stocks have a dividend yield of 7%, and the company has increased its dividend continuously for the last 3 decades.
Individuals usually gravitate towards popular stocks that are mentioned online. Facebook, Apple, Amazon, and Tesla are companies that come to mind. However, many people do not realize that these companies usually have competitors in the same field that are also making awesome gains. Let’s take the example of one company favoured by Millennials. One often-discussed company in the S&P 500 stock is Tesla (TSLA), however, the millennial generation is also making money on five other, popular stocks within the same.
Here Are 5 Most Popular Stocks Among Millennials that aren’t TeslaStocks like Industrials Plug Power (PLUG), FuelCell Energy (FCEL), consumer discretionary NIO (NIO) outperformed Tesla in the last year according to an analysis done at custody and stock clearing firm Apex Clearing. That’s pretty big considering Tesla shares are up over 640% in the last year, beating every other popular stocks in the S&P 500. Only two stocks in the S&P 500 are up more than 500%, and those are Tesla and Enphase Energy (ENPH). Enphase is the 93rd most popular holding amongst millennials. Millennial investors have been making big gains in the stock market, as account balances in the fourth quarter grew by 24% among this age group (more than any other age group). Tesla makes up more than 20% of holdings for the age group and has been a big win for them. However, it’s actually not their best. Nio, a Chinese maker of electric vehicles, is the fourth largest stock in millennials’ portfolios. Nio’s shares have gone up by almost 1200% in the last year, which is about double Tesla’s gain in the same amount of time. Nio’s revenue doubled in 2020 to nearly $16 billion. And is expected to increase tremendously this year as well. Millennials are also investing heavily in green energy, in companies such as Plug Power and Fuel Cell Energy. Plug Power is a company that makes electric mobility power stations and is currently the 43rd most popular stock among millennials. Plug Power’s competitor, Fuel Cell, is the 66th most popular stock. Shares of Plug Power are up by roughly 1500% in the past year, and shares of Fuel Cell are up by roughly 700%. Fuel Cell’s stock is expected to rise by more than 25% this year as well. Judging by how Tesla and Nio have worked out for millennials, other generations should follow their lead in investing. However, as we always indicate with all stock investing that you should first perform your own due diligence before making any investment decisions.
If you’re new to investing, you’ve probably heard that it’s almost always a good idea to buy dividend stocks. Many experts claim they have the knowledge when it comes to investing and regularly share their advice with others. Today we will focus on one particular individual who has made a career out of investing. In this blog, we’ll talk about 10 of the best dividend stocks to buy, recommended by billionaire David Tepper. David Tepper is a businessman and hedge fund manager who also owns the Carolina Panthers of the National Football League and who heads Appaloosa Management LP. Tepper studied economics at the University of Pittsburgh and completed his MBA at Carnegie Mellon University, the latter having a business school named after Tepper.
Below, we have outlined some of the best dividend stocks to buy according to David Tepper.
- HCA Healthcare, Inc. (NYSE: HCA). A for-profit healthcare company that has worked with healthcare facilities since 1968, HCA Healthcare had a revenue of $51 billion last year. The company has gained 28.25% year to date and has a market cap of $69 billion. The dividend yield is 0.92%
- UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (NYSE: UNH). As a for-profit insurance company, UnitedHealth Group Incorporated deals with healthcare insurance. The company also offers healthcare products. The company has gained 14.19% year to date and has a market cap of $376 billion. The dividend yield is 1.48%.
- Kohl’s Corporation (NYSE: KSS). Kohl’s Corporation is the owner of Kohl’s department store retail chain. The company’s revenue has grown $3.8 billion this year, and its current market value is $8.4 billion. Its dividend yield is 1.84%.
- Emerson Electric Co. (NYSE: EMR). Emerson Electric Co. is a manufacturing company and is a Fortune 500 company. They manufacture products and provide engineering services to customers. The company has a dividend yield of 2.04%. Emerson Electric Co. has a market cap of about $58.5 billion and has gained 25.05% year to date.
- QUALCOMM Incorporated (NASDAQ: QCOM). QUALCOMM Incorporated is a semiconductor company that manufactures semiconductors, software, and services connected to wireless technology. Although the company’s stock has been down this year, it’s a good one to buy for long-term gains as the company was leading the top IC design companies in terms of Q1 revenues. The dividend yield is 2.05%.
- Viacom CBS Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAC). Viacomb CBS Inc is a mass media company that was formed from a merger of CBS and Viacom 2 years ago. The company has a market cap of $27 billion, and the stock has gained 14.23% year to date. Its dividend yield is 2.27%.
- Sysco Corporation (NYSE: SYY). Sysco Corporation is a wholesale company that markets and distributes food products, small wares, kitchen equipment, and tabletop items. The company mostly sells products to restaurants, healthcare, and educational institutions. Sysco’s stock has gained 9.14% year to date and has a market cap of $40.4 billion. The dividend yield is 2.37%.
- Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NASDAQ: CHK). Chesapeake Energy Corporation is a gas industry that works in hydrocarbon exploration. Its dividend yield is 2.48%.
- Energy Transfer LP (NYSE: ET). Energy Transfer LP is a gas industry company that has gained 81.07% year to date and has a market value of about $29.9 billion. Its dividend yield is 5.62%.
- Enterprise Products Partners L.P. (NYSE: EPD). Enterprise Products Partners L.P. is a midstream natural gas and crude oil pipeline company. The company acquired Gulf Terra almost two decades ago, and ranked 105th in the 2018 Fortune 500 list of the largest American corporations by total revenue. The company has gained 29.57% year to date, and has a market value of $54.6 billion. Its dividend yield is 7.23%.
User-friendly platforms such as Robinhood make investing as accessible as ever, especially to tech-savvy millennials. The amount of Millennials that are now investing in stocks has increased tremendously over the past few years. As most of you probably already know, long-term investing is the safest and most effective method of building wealth through the stock market. So, it’s essential to focus on resilient companies, and if you’re going to invest in riskier stocks, make sure that you have other, low-volatility stocks in your portfolio as well. It’s also smart to invest in sectors and companies that you’re familiar with, while also being prepared to wait and let your money work for you — it takes time.
If you’re looking to build a solid investment portfolio this year, we’ve got you covered. Here are top 10 stocks to buy ASAP:
- Netflix: Streaming services aren’t going away anytime soon, and Netflix is at the top of the game. Netflix stock has been steadily going up for a while now, and during the pandemic, its membership base grew by over 25 million. Netflix is also constantly expanding its offerings of shows, movies, and limited series that keep consumers coming back for more. Analysts predict that the company will continue to grow by more than 40% each year for the next five years, so this is definitely a stock you’ll want to buy if you haven’t already.
- Dexcom: Dexcom is one of the biggest market movers in the continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) device industry, and has grown substantially since the Covid-10 pandemic began. The G6 CGM system, (the company’s flagship product) is a source of significant revenue for the company. Dexcom reported over 40% revenue growth in 2020’s first quarter, 34% in the second, and 26% in the third. The company is also getting ready to come out with its next-generation CGM system, the G7, soon, which will lead to greater growth and revenue for them.
- The Trade Desk: A demand-side digital advertising platform that reported a 16% growth in revenue during the first 9 months of 2020. Digital ad spend increasingly outpaces traditional forms of advertising and it doesn’t look like this trend is going away any time soon. In the third quarter of 2020, mobile video and audio spending on the Trade Desk’s platform grew 70%.
- Clorox: A company known for its reliability, Clorox consistently increases its dividend, which currently yields about 2.3%. Clorox has continued to raise its dividend for over 40 years in a row. Sales have increased during the pandemic, of course, so the company is at a very strong point right now as well. This is a safe dividend to have from a trustworthy company.
- NVIDIA: a leading developer and manufacturer of graphics processing units, NVIDIA shares have gone up 120% in the past year. The lucrative and in-demand industry the company operates in has allowed it to avoid being caught up in the market’s sharp highs and lows over the past year or so. NVIDIA also reported a strong increase in revenue in the first three quarters of 2021.
- Pinterest: The social media platform has been around for quite a while, but it’s continuing to grow in popularity. It’s a fun and creative platform where users can get inspiration in a variety of different subjects. Also, many companies are taking advantage of Pinterest’s popularity and choosing to advertise their products there. Pinterest’s global monthly users have been increasing during the pandemic and it doesn’t look like they’ll be slowing any time soon as many report the platform being a source of peace and a nice break from apps such as Instagram and Twitter.
- Walmart: As one of the world’s top retail leaders, Walmart continued to thrive during the pandemic and is a very safe stock to buy and hold for years. Walmart is also a company that raises its dividends consistently for at least the past 25 years) that has upped its dividend consecutively for more than 40 years.
- Innovative Industrial Properties: A real estate investment trust (REIT) that operates in the cannabis space, Innovative Industrial Properties has managed to avoid many common pitfalls that top cannabis stocks seem to be faced with. The REIT has maintained a zero-debt balance sheet and has increased its net income by over 200% in the last year or so. Innovative Industrial Properties’ dividend also yields 2.8% based on current share prices.
- Fulgent Genetics: This company makes a variety of genetic testing kits for different conditions such as hereditary cancers and other diseases. And although the stock is about 367% higher than it was one year ago, it’s still trading for under $100. Demand for Fulgent Genetics’ tests has increased tremendously during the pandemic, and the company reported a strong increase in revenue for 2020.
- Verizon: A great company for those wanting to invest in the 5G revolution. Verizon’s dividend pays a yield of 4.3%, which is above average. At the beginning of the pandemic, Verizon’s revenue took a bit of a hit. However, as things get back to normal and as the company continues to expand its 5G network, it will be a trustworthy company to invest in.
The good thing about being a Millennial is that we’re tech-savvy. And being tech savvy has its benefits when it comes to making money as we have access to more resources to develop a side hustle or invest. However, baby boomers tend to be better savers than millennials, and they also seem to put more emphasis on the importance of investing for the future, along with prioritizing debt repayments. It’s been found that almost 60% of millennials are more likely to spend money on experiences (concerts, eating out, traveling, etc.), and sometimes spending money on experiences can rack up and lead to debts. However, if millennials started investing and saving a little bit earlier, they could be a lot more prepared for their futures.
The Importance of Responsible Long-Term Investing for MillennialsA 2016 study done by the Responsible Investment Association found that 82% of millennial investors believed that within the next 5 years responsible investment would become a priority for more millennials. Without knowing about the pandemic, of course, they were right. The pandemic has led Canadian millennials to focus more on their finances. Long-term investing is a great strategy to earn maximum returns at minimum risk. It will also build future wealth and improve your financial health.
Inevitable Money GrowthThis strategy involves utilizing the money you have saved up to buy income-producing assets, such as dividend stocks, and then holding these assets for longer periods of time. Investing in the long-term allows people to look past short-term market volatility. Also, letting your money stay invested for a long time (10+ years), gives you the power of compounding (which involves reinvesting an asset’s earnings from capital gains or interest to generate more earnings). It’s important to note that your money won’t just grow without you doing anything. You will have to continue to reinvest the dividends without touching your capital at the same time. It’s also important to know what assets to buy, what strategy to use, and for how long to hold them.
Buying and Holding ForeverAn example of a stock that fits within this strategy is the Toronto-Dominion Bank (TSX:TD) (NYSE:TD), which was the only company that was able to keep steady revenue and earnings growth during the 2008 financial crisis.
Uncertainty into GuaranteeLong-term investment strategies should have long enough time frames to convert uncertainty into guarantees. Millennials have good chances of becoming millionaires because time is on our side. Financial independence for many of us is not far away. However, Millennials must focus on long-term strategies to set themselves up for their future. At Investors scene, we’re here to help you get the most out of your investments. Check out our other blogs for more insights to help you meet your investment goals.
Ben Franklin once said, “The money that money earns, earns money.” For those who are newbies, investing can be defined as putting money into something where you can expect a return over time – aka, “making money as you sleep” – the best way to make money, am I right? The goal of investing is maximizing your return and minimizing risk.
How to Start Investing and Making Money
- Figure out how much you can afford to invest
- Pay yourself first – meaning, invest as much as you can each month because your future self will thank you for it
- Great companies to invest in for beginners who may not be looking to invest thousands yet are Apple, Disney, and Costco
- Your “savings rate” is the percentage of your income that you invest – and the higher it is, the earlier you’ll be able to retire. So try to get your savings rate up as high as you can
Separate your short-term investment strategies from your long-term investment strategies
- Don’t put all of your investments into the same accounts, there is a difference between short-term and long-term investing
- Short-term investments are for money you’ll want in 5 years or sooner. Rather than keeping your money in a savings account (where you’ll lose money over time due to inflation), invest it – it’s a safer option. You could put your money in a high-interest savings account or a certificate of deposit account
- Long-term investments are for money you’ll want in 10 years or more, so likely your retirement money. Two types of retirement accounts include those offered by an employer, and those you sign up for yourself
- Decide how much risk you’re willing to take
- Pick what goes into your long term retirement investment accounts
- Invest as much as you can in tax-advantaged accounts
Minimize taxes as much as possible
- Invest early, often, and as much as possible
- Track your investments and net worth
- Apps such as Personal Capital will allow you to do this
Being a long-term investor requires a lot of patience, and it also requires being aware that losing money is very possible. And when you lose money, there’s really nothing you can do about it. Over the past century, the stock market has been found to hit new highs on only 5% of all trading days. Bear markets, brutal market crashes, and recessions are inevitable and you will experience them as an investor.
The markets are unpredictable
2020 was a big year for cryptocurrencies, and things haven’t slowed down in 2021 either. In fact, the total value of the digital coins briefly went above $2.5 trillion last May as more and more people are starting to invest in them. And, about 14% of American adults now own cryptocurrencies.
After Bitcoin more than 7000 cryptocurrencies have popped upCryptocurrencies are exchanged online on places like Coinbase and Gemini, or through online brokers like Robinhood and SoFi Invest, and contrary to what some may believe, cryptocurrencies are not new. Bitcoin was created in 2009 and was the first and biggest cryptocurrency by market capitalization. After Bitcoin, more than 7,700 other cryptocurrencies have popped up. Other notable names include Ethereum, tether, and dogecoin (which started out as a joke but is now one of the 10 biggest cryptocurrencies).
- Robinhood is commission-free and easy-to-use, however after halting trading during the GameStop situation earlier this year, many find it controversial.
- SoFi Invest is not commission-free (it charges up to 1.25% on crypto transactions) but often has promotions where users can get a certain amount of money free in crypto if they invest a certain amount.
- Tradestation is not commission-free either (it charges 0.3% per trade for new accounts, but the percentage drops as your balance gets higher). The site also states that they are best for “active or advanced traders.”
- Coinbase is the biggest U.S. crypto-only exchange, and offers trading for over 60 cryptocurrencies. However, they charge about 0.5% on transactions and a fee of at least $0.99. They also charge fees for making transactions with digital tokens.
- Gemini offers 40+ digital tokens to trade, but its fees can be up to 1.49%.
- eToro offers more than 20 cryptocurrencies. The fees vary, but bitcoins’ start at 0.75%.
Be Prepared to Expect the UnexpectedEach cryptocurrency is unique, so you should learn as much as you can about the one that you’re interested in purchasing as an investment. Also, you should learn specifically about why the coin was created, its purpose, the creator and its usage in the future. Cryptocurrencies present a great opportunity to diversify your portfolio, however they are more unpredictable than most other investments as trading can occur any day at any time, with many referring to them as the “wild west.” Traders often react immediately to news (an Elon Musk tweet, for example), causing currencies to jump or fall instantly. This is why less is more when it comes to crypto – when you first start investing, do so in moderation. Lastly, we always caution everyone to do your research and only invest what you can afford to lose.
It’s never too early to start investing and preparing for your future. If you’re a millennial, now is the time to start doing so if you haven’t already. However, the mere thought of investing can be intimidating for those who haven’t done it before. We hope this article can help you finally decide to invest that money. We’ll outline a few popular investment options below.
Short-Term Investing For Millennial (5 Years or Less)If you can, focus on long-term investments (ex. Investing to save for retirement). However, if you’re looking for money in the short-term (saving for a home, car, etc.) you can invest for that accordingly. For short-term gains, you can invest in:
- Government of Canada bonds
- Government of Canada Bonds offer safe returns and are fully guaranteed by the federal government
- Other bonds
- Bonds are debt securities issued by corporations, governments, or other organizations and sold to investors
- Bonds usually pay regular and stable interest
- Bonds are also a good way to diversify your portfolio
- Broad Market Index Funds
- An index fund is a type of mutual fund or exchange-traded fund (ETF) with a portfolio constructed to match or track the components of a financial market index, such as the TSX/S&P Composite Index
- Peer-to-Peer Lending
- Peer-to-peer (P2P) lending is also known as social lending or crowd lending, and allows people to get loans directly from other people, cutting out the financial institution as the middleman
Long-Term Investing For Millennial (10 Years or More)You should leave your investments alone for 10 years or more if you can. Long-term investing is almost always the better option, and allows you to take more risks. For long-term gains, you can invest in:
- Individual Stocks
- Growth Mutual Funds
- A growth fund is a mutual fund (a type of financial vehicle made up of a pool of money collected from many investors to invest in securities like stocks, bonds, money market instruments, and other assets) invested usually in a company with above-average growth
- Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs)
- Mutual funds that trade like stocks
- Target-Date Funds
- Target-date funds are mutual fund or exchange-traded funds (ETFs) structured to grow assets in a way that is optimized for a specific time frame
- Government of Canada bonds
A growth stock is a share in a company that is expected to grow at a rate that is significantly higher than average. When you invest in growth stocks, you invest in a company that has a prosperous future.
What you Should Know about Growth Stocks
- They have a competitive advantage, usually being an innovative product or service that no other company has (at least not to the same extent).
- Their customers are loyal, which drives up stock values.
- They usually don’t pay dividends, instead reinvesting profits into themselves. This means you may not make much money in the short term, but you usually will in the long term.
- They may look expensive now, but in a number of years after the company grows, the price you bought the stock for will look low.
- Their prices are ever-changing — when the company does well, stock prices soar, and when they don’t, they plummet.
How to Spot Growth StocksGrowth stocks can be hard or easy to spot — sometimes they already have a large following, sometimes they are less well known. It’s difficult to predict what the next “big” company is going to be, there are some things you can watch out for.
- Being aware of industry trends
- Find companies with strong competitive advantages
- Identify niche markets
A few growth stock companies that have progressed tremendously in the last few years include:
If you’ve recently gotten a generous birthday gift or have saved up some money and are looking to put it to good use, then look no further! We’ve got you covered with a few suggestions as to how you can invest that money. A lot of people think that the stock market is only for the ultra-rich, but the truth is that anyone can benefit from investing. Here’s how:
Low-Cost EFTs are your FriendETFs (exchange-traded funds) are great for new investors because they don’t require one to do a lot of research. They are a safe place to put your money because they are indexed funds, such as the TSX 60 index. Through ETFs you can put your money in a variety of stocks at once, making things simpler.
Set up a Diverse Portfolio with Fractional SharesHaving a diverse portfolio can be defined as owning a variety of stocks that belong to different market segments. Fractional investing is when you buy a portion of a share. For example, Apple. Fractional investing wasn’t always so widely available, but more brokerages have introduced it more recently. With fractional shares, you can buy a portion of a share of stock if you can’t swing its price in full. For example, if you want to buy a share of Tesla, you’ll have to have around $600 USD (which is a lot if you only have $1000 to spend in total). If you wanted to invest in a variety of companies, you could buy a fractional share of Tesla.
Invest in DividendsDividend stocks present two ways to make money: first, they can grow in value over time (like all other stocks), and second, you can invest the quarterly payments you make from them into other stocks, diversifying your portfolio. Dividend stocks are also beneficial in times when their prices have not fully recovered after the COVID dip and because you get to keep collecting those quarterly payments (which makes things overall a bit less painful). So there you have it. $1000 may not seem like enough money to start investing, but there’s plenty you could do with it.
We all define wealth and success differently. Some define wealth as having a lot of money in the bank, having a high income, or making a lot of money from investments. However, for many, more money comes with more problems. A recent headline from the Wall Street Journal reads “Suddenly Wealthy From Markets, Some Millennials are Stressed.” Millennials generally haven’t had it easy financially, so many of them worry that they will mess up their chance at financial stability when they acquire wealth.
Another headline from MarketWatch reads “I’m 49, my wife is 34, we have 4 kids and $2.3 million saved. I earn $300K a year but ‘lose a lot of sleep worrying about tomorrow’ — when can I retire?” Despite having more money saved than most people, this person is losing sleep over financial stress. Another quote from the article reads:
“I have had a good career in technology and make about $300,000 a year. We max out all retirement vehicles and we have zero debt aside from our primary residence. We also have approximately eight rental income residential properties that net us about $6,000 per month after all mortgages and expenses. Passive income, if you will. Our monthly target expenses are about $10,000 to $12,000 on the high end.”
There will always be something to worry about when it comes to wealth
With eight rental properties and 2.3 million saved, you’d think this person wouldn’t have a care in the world. And yes, it’s possible that they could mess things up and lose all their money – that’s possible with anyone. However, that would be extremely unlikely. While it’s true that there will always be something to worry about when it comes to wealth, especially if you have a family to support, you’ll drive yourself crazy if you’re constantly worrying.
At the end of the day, If you spend less than what you make, if you’re not living paycheck to paycheck, and if you’re saving for retirement and planning ahead, then you’re on the right track. And while there’s nothing wrong with shooting for the stars and trying to make as much money as possible, sometimes you just need to relax and realize that you’re doing enough already.
Wealth is about more than having a lot of money in the bank, or making passive income off rental properties. A part of wealth is about living (mostly) stress-free, so someone who makes $100,000 a year may end up being more wealthy than someone who makes $300,000 a year if they are more content and at peace with their life.
MYND Life Sciences Inc. (CSE:MYND) is a drug research and development company focused on novel psychedelic drug development, diagnostic approaches and pharmaceuticals. They describe themselves as “a leading life sciences company,” with their main goal as improving mental health. The company was founded by Dr. Wilfred Jefferies, a Neuroimmunologist with over 60 patents and 100 publications. Their mission is “to further our existing research and patents linking depression and inflammation at the genetic and cellular level to develop pharmaceutical treatments.” MYND claims that the pharmaceutical industry is about to go through a revolution, and they state that pharmaceutical companies have not taken an innovative approach to treating depression as little progress has been seen in the last two decades.
Reasons why MYND Life Sciences wants to treat depressionMYND’s reasoning for wanting to treat depression using psychedelics is as follows: Nearly 264 million people in the world struggle with depression. To help alleviate their symptoms, many people take antidepressants such as SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors). The problem with SSRIs? They focus more on symptom suppression than tackling the root cause of depression. Companies like Mynd have found psychedelics, like psilocybin, to be useful in doing things that SSRIs can’t – like getting to the root cause of mental illness and promoting overall brain health.
As MYND Life Sciences (CSE:MYND) Readies To Go Public, We Could See An Overdue Revolution In Treating Depression
- The current way we treat depression is not adequate. According to the WHO, about 264 million people are struggling with depression in the world today, with roughly $1T spent per year on it around the world.
- One of the major ways we treat depression today is through SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors). However, they focus more on suppressing symptoms than addressing root causes. Over the last 20 years, we’ve seen very little innovation and growth.
- About 13% of Americans aged 12+ are currently on medications, such as Zoloft or Prozac, to treat depression.
- Major investors with strong track records like Kevin O’Leary and Peter Thiel are investing heavily into psychedelics. O’Leary says, “This is a brand new area of medicine with such incredible potential,” and that “The potential of psychedelics far exceeds the potential of cannabis…What interested me is the scale and size of the market… These opportunities have been ignored ever since the 1960s.”
- MYND Life Sciences is a biotech company focused on neuro-pharmaceutical drug development and advancing psychedelic derived medicines based on neuro-anti inflammatory substances.
- MYND has several clinical trials in the works looking to commence by Q4 2021, drug development programs, and an LOI signed with a vaccine producer to fight MDD.
- The company is not yet actively trading. However, it has received conditional approval to list its common shares on the CSE.
- The founders of MYND Life Sciences, Dr. Wilfred Jefferies and Dr. Lyle Oberg may be the company’s secret weapon. Dr. Jefferies is a world-renowned neuroimmunologist, and Dr. Oberg has been instrumental in taking the company public.
Have you ever watched Shark Tank before?
One of the superstar and most memorable sharks on the show is Kevin O’Leary. The self-proclaimed “Mr. Wonderful” has a voice that carries some weight, considering he sold an EdTech company to Mattel for about $4.2 billion during the height of the dot-com boom in 1999.
But, the best part about Mr. Wonderful is how he never holds back and is as blunt and upfront as they come. He will not hesitate to call out a contestant on Shark Tank, and flat all call them or their idea moronic or stupid.
That’s why his thoughts on psilocybin and psychedelics hold significant value. Furthermore, O’Leary is a middle-aged Canadian and not who you would think of as a psychedelics bull.
So what’s making O’Leary’s mouth water so much about psychedelics?
“This is a brand new area of medicine with such incredible potential,” he says. “The potential of psychedelics far exceeds the potential of cannabis…What interested me is the scale and size of the market…These opportunities have been ignored ever since the 1960s.”
Legendary venture capitalist Peter Thiel, aka PayPal’s founder and Facebook’s first angel, is also heavily involved in the space now. He’s investing nearly $210 million to back a Berlin-based psychedelics start-up, ATAI Life Sciences.
A psychedelics firm called MYND Life Sciences (CSE:MYND) may be the next big growth story in this field. Although it is not actively trading yet, MYND recently filed and obtained a receipt for its final non-offering prospectus from the British Columbia Securities Commission, and also has received conditional approval to list the company’s common shares on the CSE.
We could be days away from this happening, and it’s essential to learn about this company now before the rest of the world gets tipped off once it starts trading.
Who is MYND Life Sciences (CSE:MYND), and What Problems is it Solving?
MYND Life Sciences is a disruptive biotech company. It’s focused on neuro-pharmaceutical drug development and advancing psychedelic derived medicines based on neuro-anti inflammatory substances through rigorous science and clinical trials with an initial focus on Major Depressive Disorder.
MYND’s mission is to continue to link depression and inflammation at the genetic and cellular level to develop a treatment, a diagnostic tool, and a preventative vaccine utilizing compounds found in psychedelics.
(Source: Corporate Presentation May 2021)
The fact of the matter is that MYND is positioned at the right place at the right time. Mental health globally has deteriorated, and existing treatments do not seem to be working. After all, the WHO claims depression and anxiety contribute to roughly $1T per year in costs worldwide.
Thanks to the pandemic, it doesn’t look like this is getting any better either. Approximately 13% of people in the United States aged 12+ are currently on antidepressants, with Zoloft being added to the FDA’s list of drugs in shortage due to high demand.
Furthermore, nearly 264 million people are struggling with depression. This figure falls somewhere between the total populations of Indonesia and Pakistan- the 4th and 5th most populous countries in the world.
But the worst part? Current ways of treating depression are simply not working. The majority of antidepressants are SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors). These treatments suppress the symptoms rather than confront the root cause head-on.
Over the last two decades, SSRIs have really not changed or improved either. As a result, we are seeing little innovation and have reached a point of stagnation.
The Guardian echoes this by claiming that “the number of psychopharmacological drugs research programs in larger drug firms has shrunk by 70% in the past decade.” (Source 5)
We are in desperate need of a revolution in this field, and companies like MYND Life Sciences may be the answer to our prayers.
Want to hear a first-hand account of why MYND is so essential? Listen to the story of former NHL enforcer Daniel Carcillo. Carcillo, now the CEO of Wesana Health, said that as a result of traumatic brain injuries he endured as an undersized enforcer, he was on the verge of suicide.
“Nothing worked,” Carcillo said. “I started to make plans to underburden my family and take my own life. I thought I had tried everything.”
But this all changed once Carcillo discovered various mushroom-based alternative medical treatments for inflammation and wellness, such as Lion’s Mane, Turkey Tail, and psilocybin. In fact, Carcillo credits psilocybin for saving his life.
Carcillo said that the day after he took psilocybin, he woke up feeling “normal” for the first time in years. Then, over two weeks, his symptoms gradually lessened before “all but fading away.”
What Does MYND Life Sciences Have In The Pipeline?
2021 could be a game-changing year for the company. The core business of MYND comes from founder Dr. Wilfred Jefferies’s research over the last 10 years around how psilocybin modulates biomarkers in the brain. One of the things they’ve found is how depression is an illness caused by inflammation and how psilocybin interacts with the body to reduce inflammation as a byproduct of reducing depression.
Inflammation affects depression so much that there is actually a correlation and similar disease process with rheumatoid arthritis.
The genetic pathway that leads to it was studied. The gene identified turning m1 macrophages into m2 macroph, from pro to anti-inflammatory states in HOURS instead of days/weeks/years.
By using these revolutionary findings, MYND is embarking on 6 different clinical trials by Q4 2021- one in Australia, one in the U.S., and four in Canada. On the company’s deck, they specified the following trials due to commence:
- A clinical trial to address a novel marker for diagnosing and monitoring, both qualitatively and quantitatively, depression in response to psilocybin treatment and various psychedelics.
- A clinical trial to address the therapeutic impact of psilocybin and psilocybin analogs as anti-inflammatories in diminishing cytokine storm-related to COVID.
- A clinical trial to address the therapeutic impact of psilocybin and psilocybin analogs on depression in patients with confirmed health predicament-related conditions.
- A clinical trial to address the therapeutic effect of psilocybin with Sepsis.
MYBD is also embarking on an MYND-604 drug development program for major depressive disorder (MDD). This program for MDD is being developed to treat MDD and bring much-needed innovation to the antiquated multi-billion dollar SSRI market. Again, this is a severe, unmet medical need.
The goal with this program is as follows:
- To address significant unmet needs in the management of MDD. If handled successfully, it would be expected to reduce overall illness-associated morbidity.
- To identify which patients with MDD will respond to/tolerate (or not) antidepressant therapies (ie. Personalized medicine).
- Identify treatments that are more (or less) likely to achieve provider-and patient-desired outcomes in MDD.
- Utilize treatments capable of attenuating critical dimension/domain-based outcomes in MDD.
- Utilize treatments that can rapidly attenuate depressive symptoms.
Additionally, MYND is working on a MYND-778 drug development program. MYND-778 is being developed as an oral dosage form of psilocybin for the treatment of Sepsis. Sepsis is a biphasic inflammatory disease characterized by an initial hyper-inflammatory phase called systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS), followed by an anti-inflammatory phase called endotoxin tolerance (ET).
Sepsis is the body’s extreme response to an infection. It occurs when an infection you already have triggers a chain reaction throughout your body. Without timely treatment, Sepsis can rapidly lead to tissue damage, organ failure, and death.
Sepsis, to this day, remains an unmet medical need. Intensivists have made attempt after attempt to yield improved outcomes. However, despite many attempts to introduce novel therapeutic molecules, there has been no meaningful change in survival rates.
But what could be the most groundbreaking recent move by the company, before they go public, is the LOI MYND signed with a company that makes vaccines to fight MDD.
MYND is a company to keep a very close eye on before they go public. There is ground floor potential for this cutting-edge firm at the center of what could be the most significant medical breakthrough of a generation. However, the psychedelic sector remains in its infancy with risks. Furthermore, the company is still not actively trading, which poses risks of its own. As an investor, though, it’s essential to weigh the pros and cons of a company such as this and do your due diligence.
1. Psilocybin is still federally illegal.
Mr. Wonderful loves the sector, and so does Peter Thiel. There have been multiple encouraging clinical results of psilocybin-related trials and personal accounts of how well it works from figures such as Daniel Carcillo. But let’s pump the brakes for a second; it is still federally illegal. Yes, the upside is more significant than cannabis, but there are greater risks. Psychedelics are nowhere close to where cannabis is in terms of acceptance and legalization.
Major cities in Colorado, California, Michigan, Oregon, and Washington D.C. have decriminalized entheogens and taken significant strides for legal psychedelic-assisted therapies. Health Canada has also shown to be more open-minded. However, psilocybin is still considered a Schedule I Controlled Substance, making it federally illegal to cultivate or hold for either personal consumption or distribution. That being said, the Company has confirmed access to Health Canada psilocybin research and development through exemptions granted to its Chief Science Officer, Dr. Wilfred Jefferies.
2. There’s Been a Sharp Rotation Out of Speculative Plays
Although the end of May has been an improved climate for speculative sectors, we are still in a very uncertain and volatile market. Red-hot psychedelic plays have been no stranger to the volatility. The rallies they went on between November 20-February 21 have stalled, to say the least. On the one hand, this could be a simple cool-off period, with stocks in speculative sectors at an enticing entry point. But, on the other hand, this could be a long-term trend for the rest of 2021, as inflation fears persist and hiking interest rates become a topic of conversation. This is something to be very mindful of.
Meet MYND Life Sciences Strong Management Team
The founders of MYND Life Sciences, Dr. Wilfred Jefferies and Dr. Lyle Oberg, might be the company’s secret weapon. As more and more psychedelic companies look to stake their claim, this duo could set MYND apart from the pack.
In fact, Dr. Jefferies is a world-renowned Neuro-immunologist with over 60 patents and 100 publications in prestigious medical journals, including Nature and The Lancet. Over the last decade or so, he’s also conducted cutting-edge research on how psilocybin modulates biomarkers in the brain. In addition, Dr. Oberg, who joined the team about a year ago, brings sharp business acumen and has been instrumental in taking the company public.
Dr. Wilfred Jefferies, Co-Founder, and Chief Science Officer
Dr. Wilfred A. Jefferies earned his Doctor of Philosophy degree from the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology at the University of Oxford, followed by post-doctorates at top academic centers in Switzerland and Sweden. He was quickly recognized as a rising star by none other than Nobel Prize laureate Dr. Michael Smith who personally recruited him to his laboratory at the University of British Columbia.
There he continues to perform research today. In addition, Dr. Jefferies is recognized as a leader in the emerging field of immunotherapy. His research has resulted in new and innovative ways to use components of the body’s own immune system to fight cancer, viruses and even promote brain health. Moreover, he has an uncanny ability to translate complex immunological breakthroughs into real-world medical treatments.
Dr. Jefferies is also a member of the UBC Departments of Microbiology & Immunology, Medical Genetics, and Zoology, as well as the Centre for Blood Research and the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health.
Dr. Lyle Oberg, Co-Founder, and Chief Executive Officer
A physician by profession, Dr. Oberg possesses extensive senior leadership, finance, and corporate governance experience. He was first elected to the Legislative Assembly of Alberta as a Progressive Conservative in 1993. He was first appointed to the Alberta Cabinet in 1997 and served numerous posts. He launched a western Canadian initiative to address Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and implemented an interprovincial strategy to share resources and develop new and better approaches for addressing FAS.
In May 1999, Dr. Oberg was appointed Minister of Learning. He began the second language initiative in Alberta schools to give students an edge in the world marketplace. As well, he initiated the development of the daily physical activity program to improve the health of Alberta students. In 2006, Lyle Oberg was named Minister of Finance. Lyle left politics in 2008 with one of the most significant surpluses in Alberta’s history. Dr. Oberg later opened and became CEO of C2DNA, the first private DNA testing facility in Canada.
Jordan Cleland, Chief Operating Officer
Jordan Cleland is the Chief Operating Officer of MYND Life Sciences. He previously operated Jordan Cleland Consulting, a communications, public relations, fundraising, leadership coaching, and strategy practice. Cleland formerly served as Vice President, Advancement at Olds College in Alberta, Canada, where he maximized reputation and relationships with media, alumni, donors, prospective students, and governments. Jordan was presented the Gold Medal for Excellence in Leadership at the 2013 Colleges and Institutes Canada conference.
Cleland earned a Master’s in Leadership through Otago Polytechnic in New Zealand and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Whitworth University in Washington. He furthered his management and communications expertise in obtaining certificates from York University, University of British Columbia, and Harvard/MIT. Prior roles were with the Workers’ Compensation Board, KPMG Consulting, and in the senior levels of government as a Ministerial Chief of Staff with the Government of Alberta.
Paul Ciullo, Chief Financial Officer
Paul is a 12-year veteran in senior corporate finance and accounting positions for Fortune 500 companies, including General Electric and Xerox. In addition, Paul served as the Director of Finance for Conduent Legal and Compliance Services, specializing in financial reporting and project management. Paul obtained a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from SUNY Geneseo and an MBA from Pennsylvania State University. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the New York State Society of CPAs. Previously, he served on the Finance Committee for the AIDS Council of Northeastern New York.
Dr. Chaahat SB Singh, Senior Research Manager
Dr. Chaahat SB Singh has had training in microbiology, infectious diseases, and Neuroscience. She holds a BSc and an MSc (hons.) degree in Microbiology from Guru Nanak Dev University, India, and in 2019 was awarded a Ph.D. in Medical Genetics with a focus on Central Nervous System (CNS) disorders at the University of British Columbia. She has previously worked at Panacea Biotec Ltd. for downstream processing of Hepatitis B vaccine and at the Institute of Microbial Technology, India, investigating the resistance mechanism in Drug-resistant Tuberculosis.
During her Ph.D., under the supervision of Dr. Wilf Jefferies, she studied vascular dysfunction associated with Alzheimer’s disease (AD), establishing an alternative mechanism to explain the blood-brain barrier disruption and disease pathology. She also explored the potential of antiangiogenic small molecules and biologics used in cancer therapy as novel and promising therapeutics for AD. Dr.
Singh has mentored many high school, undergraduate, and graduate students and, in the past, has been an active volunteer member of the UBC Harassment and Discrimination committee and the UBC Therapeutics Initiative. She is a team player who has had successful collaborations resulting in several peer-reviewed articles and reviews. She continues her passion for the discovery and development of therapeutics for CNS disorders in her postdoctoral research.
Dr Cheryl Pfeifer, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist
Dr. Cheryl Pfeifer has been involved with immunological research for over 30 years. She holds a Bachelor of Science and a Masters in Veterinary Microbiology from the University of Saskatchewan, and a Ph.D. (1999) in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of British Columbia. After completing a post-doctorate with Dr. Wilf Jefferies, she has continued to work closely with him for the past 20 years on projects ranging from Alzheimer’s disease and the blood-brain barrier to the immune escape of cancer regulation of the immune system using vaccines and small molecules.
Dr. Pfeifer is a multidisciplinary scientist with proven experience mentoring students and postdoctoral fellows and managing multi-faceted teams to achieve the research goals. In addition, she has extensive experience as a grant facilitator and a collaborative scientific researcher, with 15+ peer-reviewed publications and 4 patents.
Marie Johns, Research Manager
Marie is an incoming Medical Genetics M.Sc. candidate fascinated with the genetic basis of neurological disease and disorder. While pursuing her B.Sc. in Biology and Behavioural Neuroscience, she participated in UBC’s Co-op program, which afforded her research experience in neurogenetics labs from Vancouver, Canada, to Erlangen, Germany. She became proficient in several cellular and molecular biological techniques while studying Alcohol Use Disorder, Developmental Coordination Disorder, and cerebellar development in mouse models, hPSC-derived neural organoids, and human DNA samples.
After graduation, she supported various clinical research projects as a research assistant at BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute. Her presentation on NIRS monitoring in scoliosis correction surgery won her an award in Anesthesiology at UBC Medicine’s 2020 APT Conference. She looks forward to applying her wealth of clinical and laboratory research experience to her work in the Jefferies Lab.
Scientific Advisory Board
Dr. Mark Geyer
Mark A. Geyer Ph.D. is Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry and Neurosciences Emeritus at the University of California San Diego (UCSD) and directs the Neuropsychopharmacology Unit of the VISN 22 Veterans Administration Mental Illness Research, Clinical, and Education Center. At UCSD, he is a founding member of the Consortium for Translational Research in Neuropsychopharmacology (CTRIN) and Translational Research in Psychophysiology, Exploration, and Cognition (TRIPEC) groups. In 1993, he co-founded the Heffter Research Institute, which pioneered and supported much of the scientific research that has prompted the exploration of psychedelics as potential therapeutics in humans. He has recently co-founded the Psychedelics and Health Research Initiative at UCSD, exploring the efficacy of psychedelics in the treatment of pain disorders.
Dr. Joseph Martin
Joseph Boyd Martin, M.D., Ph.D., Edward R., and Anne G. Lefler, Professor of Neurobiology, served as Dean of the Harvard Faculty of Medicine from 1997 to 2007. Born in Bassano, Alberta, Canada, in 1938, Dr. Martin received his premedical and medical education at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, earning the M.D. degree in 1962. He completed a residency in neurology in 1966 and a fellowship in neuropathology in 1967 at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio.
He received his Ph. D. in anatomy from the University of Rochester in 1971. Dr. Martin began his career in academic medicine at McGill University in Montreal, where he eventually became Chair of the Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery in 1977. In 1978, he joined the faculty of Harvard Medical School in Boston as the Bullard Professor of Neurology and Chief of the Neurology Service at the Massachusetts General Hospital. In 1984, he was appointed the Julieanne Dorn Professor of Neurology at Harvard. Dr. Martin’s research focused on the hypothalamic regulation of pituitary hormone secretions and neurochemical and molecular genetics to better understand the causes of neurological and neurodegenerative disease.
Dr. Michael Brownstein
Dr. Brownstein has over thirty years of research experience in the fields of genetics, endocrinology, and pharmacology. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Columbia University; completed his graduate training at the University of Chicago, where he earned an M.D. and Ph.D. in pharmacology; and received his clinical training at the Boston Children’s Hospital.
He then moved to the National Institutes of Health to work with Julius Axelrod, recipient of a Nobel Prize in 1970 for his studies in neuropharmacology. He remained at NIH after completing his fellowship. In addition, Dr. Brownstein served at the NIH as Chief of the Laboratory of Genetics of the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Human Genome Research Institute; and for two years as the Scientific Director of the NIMH Intramural Research Program.
John Trowsdale is an Emeritus Professor, a specialist in Immunogenetics, in the Department of Pathology, University of Cambridge UK. In the early 1980’s he was one of the first to clone HLA genes and complete sequencing of the entire HLA region. In addition, in collaboration with Stephan Beck at the Sanger Center, he provided sequenced common HLA haplotypes, which were used as ‘gold-standard’ references.
John’s interest in GenDx is in the further development of rapid genetic analysis of highly variable genes such as HLA and KIR in human diseases, such as infection, autoimmunity, cancer, and pregnancy disorders. The link with GenDx is of mutual benefit in driving forward the use of next-generation sequencing techniques to achieve rapid and accurate immunogenetic analysis. John visits GenDx to discuss how the development of novel techniques at GenDx benefits the research and health care communities.
Takeaway for investors
MYND is as strong of a play as you could ask for before psychedelics truly rocket to the mainstream as a viable and robust treatment for depression. The upside potential is evident to everyone from Kevin O’Leary, to Peter Thiel, to Robinhood investors who can’t get enough of the sector. But this is a sector only for those with an iron stomach. The up days will be parties, and the down days will crush your spirits. But in such a growth sector with tremendous upside, learning about an obscure stock BEFORE it goes public is the holy grail.
The FDA has already called psilocybin a “breakthrough therapy.” Of course, more dominoes could eventually fall from here, and once MYND goes public, all bets are off. Time will tell what happens with the market and speculative sectors. But judging by the company’s founders and what it’s got cooking in its pipeline, this is not something you will possibly want to overthink or sit out on.
It’s no secret that plant-based food sales have skyrocketed within the last 5 years. While Beyond Meat™ may be the first plant-based company that comes to mind, many others are coming up too – one of which includes BC-based Boosh Plant-Based Brands Inc. “Boosh Food” (CSE:VEGI) (OTC:VGGIF).
Boosh Food has been growing in popularity in Canada and is featured in grocery stores such as Metro. Their offerings are similar to Beyond Meat™, and they position themselves as selling easy, healthy, nutritionally balanced plant-based comfort food. They currently have six frozen product offerings that consist of single or double-serving bowl-based entrees. They also have three refrigerated entrees that are expected to be in stores by the end of July.
Part of the reason that plant-based food has been rising in popularity is because of the Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic appeared to expose the vulnerabilities of our animal-dependent food value chain, making people more reliant on plant-based protein. There was more than $930 million in funding put into the plant-based protein industry in the first quarter of 2021 alone.
We’ve also seen plant-based milks, particularly oat milk, grow tremendously in popularity over the last few months. Canada alone has seen a 113% spike in Vegan diet related google searches since 2016.
Management of Boosh Food believe that plant-based diets will be a long-term trend
Beyond Meat™ appears to be the most popular brand, but as plant-based diets increase, more brands make a case within the plant-based field. This includes the up and coming Boosh Plant-Based Brands Inc. (CSE:VEGI) (OTC:VGGIF). Management at Boosh Food believes that plant-based diets will be a long-term trend rather than a fad due to environmental and ethical concerns of consumers.
Boosh has stated that most of their customers have regular animal-based diets who want to try experimenting with more plant-based food – “flexitarians,” and that their main goal is to provide plant-based meals that are 100% trusted by the consumer. Their product offerings include frozen meals that are ready to simply “heat and eat”, and include pasta Bolognese Bowl, Mac n’ Cheese, Coconut Curry Bowl, Mexican fiesta Blow, Veggie Pot Pie, and award-winning Shepherd’s Pie.
Boosh completed its IPO on May 27th and raised approximately $2.8 million. It opened at $.50 and in less than two weeks the stock trades at $1.30. With only approximately 15 million shares outstanding, of which management owns approximately 29%, we think that VEGI’s valuation may significantly increase over the next few years.