Day: May 12, 2021

When To Lock In A Mortgage?

This post is by Jeff Carter from Points and Figures

Yesterday, a commenter mentioned that they had a variable rate mortgage and were wondering when to lock-in.  I don’t think they are alone.  I suspect in this housing frenzy, a lot of people got variable-rate mortgages or in some cases interest-only mortgages.

How do you know when to lock-in?

Hedging a mortgage is tough.  The products that you can use are either too volatile, or they are sized too big for most people to accurately put a realistic hedge on.  If you have a mortgage of a million or more, you can hedge.  If you are really sophisticated, you can put some options on and roll the position over and over and be more precise with your hedging.

Most mortgages are based on the London Interbank Rate (LIBOR).  Of course, that’s going to change in a year and there is a decent chance that Ameribor could become the new benchmark.  The current Ameribor rate is .08850%.  The futures market for LIBOR is the Eurodollar contract at the CME.

The way you figure out the actual interest rate is to subtract the contract value from 1.  The June 2o21 contract was trading at 99.84 yesterday.  So, take 100-99.84=.16%.  Interestingly, the Ameribor rate is roughly half the LIBOR rate.  If the market switches over to Ameribor, borrowing rates could go down.  The December Eurodollar contract for 2023 is trading at 98.97, so 100-98.97=1.03%. Basically, you are looking at a 1% rise over two years.  That’s not, or shouldn’t be prohibitive.

You will (Read more...)

We’re All Equal in Our Infinite Ignorance

This post is by naval from Naval

The door is always open for new ideas

Brett: Induction says that prediction is the main reason science exists, but it’s really explanation.

You want an explanation of what’s going on, even if you can’t necessarily predict with any certainty what’s going to happen next.

In fact, knowing what’s going to happen next with some degree of certainty can be deflating. The unknown can be far more fun than absolute certitude about what tomorrow will bring.

Naval: This brings us to the related point that science is never settled. We should always be free to have new creativity and new conjecture.

You never know where the best ideas are going to come from. You have to take every idea that’s made in good faith seriously.

This idea that “the science is settled” or “the science is closed” is nonsense. It implies that we can all agree on the process with which we come up with new theories.

But new theories come through creativity and conjecture. The door is always open for new people with new ideas to come in and do that.

Brett: As Popper said, “We’re all equal in our infinite ignorance.

Even if someone claims expertise—and they might have a valid claim—there’s an infinite number of things they don’t know that could affect the things they do know.

The student who’s not expert in anything can still come up with an idea that can challenge the foundations of the greatest expert.

Like the child, the expert (Read more...)

Ranked: The Top 10 Football Clubs by Market Value

This post is by Aran Ali from Visual Capitalist

Ranked: The Top 10 Football Clubs by Market Value

The Briefing

  • The top 10 football clubs hold a combined $36 billion in market value
  • English clubs represent 6 of the 10 top football clubs

The Top 10 Football Clubs by Market Value

In the world of football, the stakes are rising due to the amount of dollars injected into the game. In light of the rapid rise and fall of the European Super League (ESL), this graphic covers the top 10 football clubs by market value.

Today, the top 10 clubs are collectively worth $36 billion and bring in over $6 billion in annual revenues.

Football ClubMarket Value ($M)Revenue ($M)
Real Madrid$4,750$792
Bayern Munich$4,220$703
Manchester United$4,200$643
Manchester City$4,000$609

Football clubs have witnessed more money being thrown into the game, partly because of the licensing and streaming deals behind the curtain. Big entities have entered the space like Amazon, Disney through ESPN, and DAZN, which has been regarded as the Netflix of sport.

From an audience standpoint, business interest in the sport is justified. In the last World Cup final, 517 million tuned in, compared to 160 million for the Super Bowl during the same year.

More Money in the Game

It’s not just the clubs that are seeing more money trickle down. Both fees for agents and player transfers have soared. From 2014 to 2019, agent fees grew from $241 (Read more...)

Europe Leads in EV Sales, but for How Long?

This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist

2020 EV Sales

The Briefing

  • Europe and China were the largest electric vehicle (EV) markets by a wide margin in 2020
  • EV adoption in the U.S. is expected to rise as the Biden administration works to increase industry incentives

Europe Leads in EV Sales, but for How Long?

Global sales of electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrids (PHEV) surpassed 3 million for the first time in 2020, despite the economic headwinds imposed by COVID-19.

This visualization presents a geographical breakdown of these sales, revealing that over 80% were made in either Europe or China.

CountryEV and Plug-in Hybrid Sales (2020) Population (2020) 
European Union (EU)1,390,000747.6M
South Korea52,00051.3M

The EU was the largest market by a margin of 60,000 cars, but given China’s larger population, it’s likely the two will switch places in the near future.

Government Incentives Play a Key Role

Government incentives have boosted the transition to battery power in recent years. For example, many countries offer a buyer rebate, which effectively reduces the price a consumer pays for an EV or PHEV.

In Germany, buyers can receive a subsidy of $10,800 when purchasing an EV with a list price of less than $48,000. China also offers a rebate program, where buyers of an EV with a travel range of at least 186 miles can receive a subsidy of $2,500.

Consumers should be aware that these incentives are (Read more...)

Want to know the next big thing in healthcare? Look where the founders are building

This article is part of the Crunchbase Community Contributor Series. The author is an expert in their field and a Crunchbase user. We are honored to feature and promote their contribution on the Crunchbase blog.

Please note that the author is not employed by Crunchbase and the opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect official views or opinions of Crunchbase, Inc. 

As an early stage business creation platform, we meet founders at the earliest stages of building their businesses. Seeing the areas that are attracting the most talented founders, gives us a unique perspective on the greatest opportunities for value creation. Founders lead the way for showing the whitespace in their industries and it is clear that health and wellness has become one of the most important categories.

 In response to this burgeoning trend in February 2020, we called for founders to build with us within the categories of health & wellness for our inaugural “Humans in the Wild” Entrepreneur-in-Residence cohort. We admitted our first class of intrepid founders, launching a would-be-in-person program just days before the very industry we set out to disrupt was turned completely inside out by the pandemic. Three months later, despite the challenges they faced, our 12 founders had made immense progress building their businesses across broad areas including virtual primary care for people of color, postnatal nutrition, sleep hygiene, and hearing health. 

A year later, healthcare continues to transform at a rapid pace. There has never been a better time to bring entrepreneurial, (Read more...)

NVCA Member Spotlight: .406 Ventures

Welcome to our Member Spotlight series where we give a profile overview of our many diverse members. For this deep dive, we spoke to Liam Donohue, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of .406 Ventures, to learn more about his firm.

Tell us about your firm. What makes it different?

When we founded .406 Ventures, we set out to build a firm that had a unique combination of characteristics, including:

Operational centricity – each of our team members have operational experience, which informs our appreciation for the grit it takes to build great companies as well as our collective instinct to be as helpful as possible to the entrepreneurs we back, and even to those we don’t.

Early-stage focus – we are focused on Series A investing, which for us means companies that have some early evidence of product-market fit, but that still have a lot of building to do. We find that this is the stage where we can add the most value and thus generate the strongest returns for our LPs.

Right-sized funds – our four core funds, which range from $170M to $300M, are big enough to matter, but not so big that we feel pressure to over capitalize companies or move to later stage investing.

Focused on domains we know well – for over 15 years, we have targeted our investments on enterprise-focused companies in spaces we know really well:  healthcare, cybersecurity, and data / cloud. Even within each of these verticals, we are careful to (Read more...)

Bird’s SPAC filing shows scooter-nomics just doesn’t fly

Scooter unicorn Bird is going public, per an agreement to merge with a special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC. After rumors and reports circulated for months about an imminent deal, it has finally arrived.

First, a quick overview of the agreement and the players involved: Bird is merging with Switchback II at an implied valuation of $2.3 billion. Fidelity Management & Research Company will lead the deal’s $106 million in private investment in public equity, or PIPE. Apollo Investment Corp. and MidCap Financial Trust provided an additional $40 million in asset financing. (Disclosure: Apollo is buying TechCrunch’s parent company.)

Historically — and based on what we’re seeing in this fantastical filing — Bird proved to be a simply awful business. Its results from 2019 and 2020 describe a company with a huge cost structure and unprofitable revenue, per filings. After posting negative gross profit in both of the most recent full-year periods, Bird’s initial model appears to have been defeated by the market.

What drove the company’s hugely unprofitable revenues and resulting net losses? Unit economics that were nearly comically destructive.

Some of the numbers Bird shared in its investor deck show a business that is growing, in terms of users and geographic footprint. Bird is in 200 cities globally and reports more than 95 million rides to date, and 3 million new riders added during the pandemic. The investor deck also touts year-round positive economics during the COVID-19 era. That all looks positive. But looking into the line-item (Read more...)

Magic, persistence, imagination and more

This post is by Seth Godin from Seth's Blog

Magic first: Acar and the folks at Penguin are offering a limited-edition deck of special cards to go with The Practice. It launched today.

Persistence: Today is the 200th episode of my podcast Akimbo. I don’t blog about it here often, but wanted to thank my producer Alex DiPalma and thank you for listening as well. It’s a labor of love, and it’s also among the top 1% of all podcasts. You can check out episodes here and transcripts here and subscribe here. That’s years and years of weekly audio, via the magic of podcasting.

Imagination: Jacqueline Novogratz and Tim Ferriss talk about her new book on Tim’s podcast this week. Hearing two of my friends so thoroughly talk about work that truly matters is a wonder, and I encourage you to check it out.

And more: Erica Dhawan’s book on digital body language just arrived, and it’s a salve for exhausted Zoom users (all of us). Steve Wexler’s new book on data visualizations, charts and graphs is worth checking out when it ships next week. And the blog and book and podcast that will change your life the most is the one you create.

Go make something.

Fact Check: The Truth Behind Five ESG Myths

This post is by Dorothy Neufeld from Visual Capitalist

ESG Myths

Fact Check: The Truth Behind 5 ESG Myths

In 2021, investors continue to embrace environmental, social, and governance (ESG) investments at record levels.

In the first quarter of 2021, global ESG fund inflows outpaced the last four consecutive quarters, reaching $2 trillion. But while ESG gains rapid momentum, the CFA Institute shows that 33% of professional investors surveyed feel they have insufficient knowledge for considering ESG issues.

To help investors understand this growing trend, this infographic from MSCI helps provide a fact check on five common ESG myths.

1. “ESG Comes at the Expense of Investment Performance”

Fact Check: Not necessarily

Worldwide, ESG-focused companies have not only seen higher returns, but stronger earnings growth and dividends.

Returns by ESG RatingsEarnings Growth*Active Return**Dividends and Buybacks
Top tier2.89%1.31%0.28%
Middle tier1.35%0.12%-0.02%
Bottom tier-9.22%-1.25%-0.05%

Source: MSCI ESG Research LLC (Dec, 2020)
*Contribution of earnings growth and dividends/buybacks to active return
**Active return is the additional gain or loss compared to it respective benchmark

In fact, a separate study from the CFA Institute shows that 35% of investment professionals invest in ESG to improve their financial returns.

2. “Investors Talk About ESG But Don’t Invest In It”

Fact Check: False

Global ESG assets under management (AUM) in ETFs have grown from $6 billion in 2015 to $150 billion in 2020. In just five years, ESG AUM have accelerated 25 times.

Today, money managers are focusing on the following top five issues:

(Read more...)

A New Model: How MOTHER SUPERIOR’s Jo Marini Is Redesigning VC

The Crunchbase “Female Founder Series,” is a series of stories, Q&As, and thought-leadership pieces from glass-ceiling-smashers who overcame the odds and are now leading successful companies.

Jo Marini is the founder and CEO of MOTHER SUPERIOR, a venture and social purpose foundry that is redefining and redesigning venture capital. Focused on early-stage entrepreneurs, the foundry’s novel approach to VC is designed with exponential success as a feature, and offers founders a full suite of services, operations, funding and long-term support. Founders retain majority equity and generate opportunities for others as values-based investors in future social purpose ventures. 

Marini was raised by an extended community of immigrants who shaped her world view of equity, opportunity and economic agency. She is an eternal optimist who delights in critical inquisition of the status quo.

In this Q&A Marini shares her experience building MOTHER SUPERIOR and encourages others to examine and challenge structural inequality in the VC and startup space.

Q: What were you doing before MOTHER SUPERIOR?

I’ve never been a fan of following straight lines, and the life that led me to founding MOTHER SUPERIOR in 2019 zig-zags accordingly. I graduated from the United States Air Force Academy, learned movement therapy for Cirque du Soleil performers in Las Vegas, worked in innovation roles for mid-sized agencies, and won awards for launching the first sustainable food truck and a day restaurant in Colorado Springs. Each step taught me something that informed the next, all the way until I set (Read more...)