This week’s Friday Footnotes feels like a nice gateway to the weekend. I have a discount on a beer for you, a request to ‘not tell me the score’, a hope that you enjoy the last dance, and if that fails, you can bore your mates about international currency fluctuations whilst tucking into a Big Mac at the end of the night! Enjoy.
Drink I’ve Been Enjoying
Pre-lockdown I had started to drink more alcohol-free beer than alcoholic beer – certainly at home, that was pretty much all I drank. Lockdown only exaggerated this, and so by now I like to think I have tried most of the interesting free or low alcohol beers on the market. Some have been horrid, most have been pretty good and the odd few stood out as being very good.
My absolute favourite has become Lucky Saint. The taste is fantastic; it’s an unfiltered lager with real character, the bottle looks great, and at no point do you feel like you are missing out… well except on the hangover. They have been good enough to give us an exclusive discount code of LUCKYTRI20 so fill your boots while it lasts! I know I will.
What I’ve Been Watching
Whilst I haven’t quite finished it yet, I have been loving The Last Dance on Netflix. I am no basketball fan, but a school friend of mine was during the Michael Jordan era, so I followed the Chicago Bulls through osmosis. This docuseries chronicles the rise of superstar Michael Jordan and the simultaneous struggle of Scotty Pippen in the 1990s Chicago Bulls. If you like sport, you will love this.
Podcast I’ve Been Listening To
I was introduced to the Don’t Tell me the Score podcast after interviewing the ultra-runner Kerry Sutton for a podcast that will be released shortly (more on than soon). She described it as “What can sport teach us about life and how best to live it?”. Each week Simon Mundie sits down with an expert and uses sport to answer life’s big questions. I have been listening to the incredible cancer recovery story of James Golding, and will definitely be coming back to this series for more.
Quote of the Week
“Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships.”
- Michael Jordan
Finance Theme I’ve Been Considering
The Economist, rather brilliantly, came up with the idea of using a Big Mac as a “basket” (a combination of goods in the form of ingredients and services in the form of McDonald’s staff wages). The below graphic shows that according to this measure the pound was 25% undervalued relative to the dollar.
The good news for those holding pounds and pound assets (like bonds or UK property) is that the pound is roughly as undervalued as it has been for the past 33 years. The bad news is that if you go back further, there have been periods of undervaluation far worse than this which reinforces that a fall from here is certainly possible. From a long-term perspective, there is some support for sterling appreciating over the long-term. There is, however, an even stronger case for not betting solely on such an outcome and maintaining a healthy degree of currency diversification in your investments.