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May 21 2021


1. Retail reactions…

We mentioned last week reports of retail investors pulling their money out of the market to spend it IRL (‘in real life’!) as the US economy reopens. See chart below of the drop in new client accounts recently.

It seems Bitcoin and Dogecoin, and other cryptocurrencies, are feeling the pain too, dropping ~30% this week. This came as Bidens tax enforcement plan targets cryptos. The proposal includes a requirement for transfers of at least $10,000 of digital currency to be reported to the IRS, the Treasury said. We wont get started on the environmental impacts of crypto…

Source: Financial Times

2. Job update…

In Aus: SEEK job ads for April were up 11.9%mom, up 30.9% vs April 2019 & LMIP (Labour Marker Information Portal) data shows April job ads +44.8% on pre-covid levels, to highest levels since October 2008. LMIP data shows a 12th consecutive month of rising job ads (see top chart below).

In the US: there has never been more job vacancies than in March, at a record 8.123m (second chart below). And new US business applications are soaring, rising 24% yoy in 2020, and 62% yoy in 1Q21.

Australian job ads:

US job vacancies:

Source: LMIP, Bloomberg


3. It’s time to fly…

Lots of updates this week on how much we are getting back out on the road, domestically, of course!

  • Amadeus survey reckons Australasian hotel occupancy rose from 30% in February to 60% in April. And global hotel occupancy at 46% vs pre-covid 70%.
  • At the Qantas trading update this week, they said they are on track for 95% domestic travel capacity (against pre-COVID levels) in the fourth quarter of FY21
  • Webjet announced domestic flight bookings at 95% pre-border shutdowns
  • Domestic aviation fuel sales in March +38% MoM to best post-Covid month yet, and back to almost 70% of pre-Covid March 2019 level (see chart below)
  • Meanwhile, in the US, airport TSA checkpoint data shows continuing improvement at 75% of pre-covid levels. Passengers checking in through security at U.S. airports surged to 1.85 million on Sunday, the highest since early March 2020, and down only 30% on 2019 levels (see second chart below).

Source: Bell Potter, Bloomberg