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Nvidia and AMD CEO start selling shares; The Fed & Apple

Welcome back to the Lumida Ledger.

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Here’s a preview of what we cover this week:

  • Macro: Non-farm payrolls meet the Fed

  • Markets:  Nvidia / TSMC / Apple AI; Insiders selling; Lumida ETF?

  • Company Earnings: Tech Resilient, Consumer Discretionary in Headwinds

  • AI: Hard Drives, Productivity & ARM

  • Digital Assets: Bitcoin Trend Check-In

Lumida Quoted in The Information

Ram Ahluwalia was quoted in The Information - analyzing the Amazon AWS margins this week.

Is it simply accounting games or something sticky and long-term?

Here’s the link to the article.

Lumida Telegram Group

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We curate all our insights, market commentary, earnings calls, and more with special takes from Ram.

Click here to check it out and join in on the conversation. 

We will continue to iterate on this and add content streams over time.

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This Monday, holders of Nvidia will be the beneficiary of a 10-to-1 stock split.

Also, this past week, the CEO of Nvidia and AMD are selling shares…

… while multiples of the semiconductor category remain at an all-time high. 

The chart above shows that current valuations for the category are higher than they have ever been.

As we noted in May last year, there’s a big difference between Cisco and Nvidia. 

Namely, Nvidia has a secular fundamental earnings growth driver.  It’s customers are governments, big tech firms, and leaders across sectors.

Cisco’s customers were startups and Telco companies.

We are still in the early innings of a major project that has captured the imagination of governments and technology firms. 

That said, we believe the AI story is now fully valued. 

Nvidia we expect, plays out like last year. Last May, Nvidia teleported higher on a re-rating after strong earnings.

That happened again here. The rest of the year Nvidia was flattish (it did correct in the Aug to October correction.)

We certainly can envision that scenario in 2024 or 2023 in so many ways. 

Indeed, 2024 is playing out like an echo of 2023 in many ways.

Semiconductors: Taiwan Semiconductor

One of the names we have discussed in our newsletter and have owned for quite a while is Taiwan Semiconductor. 

TSMC is reportedly negotiating with Nvidia to raise their prices and boost their margins.

TSMC’s gain comes at Nvidia’s expense.

We knew last summer that TSMC was well positioned. No foundry - not GFS, not Intel - can really hold a candle to TSMC. 

TSMC’s largest customers are Apple and Nvidia.

That was part of our bull thesis on TSMC. 

Also, TSMC offers value relative to other semiconductors, however relative that value is to it’s own history.

Valuations are partially justified by strong earnings growth and profit margin improvement. 

TSMC can charge customers an 80% margin because demand is outstripping supply.

However, no one is talking about the following two issues: 

  1. TIME.

It takes time for supply to come online.

It takes time for utilities to source, get licenses, and generate more power.

It takes time for foundries to build new plants.

It takes time for ASML to expand production capacity.

We believe semiconductor valuations have pulled forward earnings significantly. 

But it still takes nine months to make a baby.


Earnings expectations for the S&P 500 are high; given the strength of the economy, we believe those earnings can be achieved. 

That’s a ‘Meets’, not an ‘Exceeds’, however.

Remember in October of last year? Earnings growth expectations were 0%. 

We wrote this post in the middle of October last year when we were bullish, and everyone was bearish.

We’ve come a long way from that!

Look at forward profit margins. They are increasing.

However, Mr. Market believes forward profit margins will go up… 

That doesn’t make sense to us.

Taiwan Semiconductor wants to increase its margin. This will impact Apple and Nvidia, which have a much higher weight in the market.

Apple also has to contend with higher per-unit costs of re-shoring.

This is a subtle point—Michael Parekh brought it up in a wonderful podcast we recommend you listen to on all things AI.

Don’t forget to subscribe and share with your friends.

Expectations, Expectations, Expectations…

Certain sectors of the economy benefit from significant earnings growth, but I’m not sure they can beat the elevated expectations. 

Where we stand, we believe that the semi category as a whole under performs other categories for the back half of this year.

Semiconductors are consensus now. A lot of good news is priced in and years of earnings are pulled forward.

If you were buying semi in October, when we said to do so, you’ve done really well.

Depending on the name, you’d be up 50% to 150%.

Broadcom Since Last October

Fade the Crowd

We want to exercise caution when the crowd is on the same side. 

We believe that the best value in technology today is Google and Meta. 

Meta's risk is that it spends a lot of money on GPU CapEx. If they increase spending beyond expectations, that will hurt performance.

The other feature in markets is the correction in SaaS. 

The promise of SaaS was low CapEx.

Now firms like Snowflake spend over $1 billion on acquisitions to become AI relevant.

SaaS is broken.

SaaS today is oversold - more so than ever in its history. It’s due for a bounce. 

However, we viewed those as short-lived. 

Please see our newsletter from a few weeks ago, ‘Where are all the Great Tech Investors, ' for a deep dive into Technology and how to best position yourself there.

Market Valuations Are High

S&P 500 SPX is historically expensive based on 19/20 valuation metrics

Quotable Quotes

The Fed, Apple and Open AI

Three big events are coming up this week: the Apple Developer conference on Monday, the Fed on Wednesday, and Broadcom’s earnings on Thursday.

The Fed will not cut rates in June nor July. The jobs gains are too strong.

We predicted this and once again Goldman Sachs and the other money center banks are wrong.

We believe Apple will share an announcement regarding their partnership with OpenAI.

Most likely, Apple’s will say Siri will be powered by OpenAI. 

But don’t we already know that? 

This would make Siri actually useful instead of a slightly less annoying version of the paper clip that had cluttered Microsoft Word.

We believe the Apple event is a ‘buy the rumor, sell the news’ event. 

Will upgrading Siri translate into a strong upgrade cycle. I’m not sure. I can use OpenAI’s app for that right now. 

But, play it out… Suppose there is an upgrade cycle.

Apple’s revenue is shrinking YOY 4% now.

Is the upgrade cycle a change in the curve? No. It’s a one-year bump.

Apple is also now facing higher cost pressures from re-shoring. 

Taiwan Semiconductor, the foundry leader that powers Nvidia and Apple, is requesting greater margin from its customers - as it should. TSMC is essential.

Apple did announce $100 Bn+ in buybacks. 

But Warren Buffett is also selling $100 Bn+ in Apple stock. 

We believe Apple’s stock is range bound, and it’s near the upper end of the range bound. 

We initiated a small short position in Apple to hedge risk in our tech stocks.

Outlook on Markets

Stepping back when we look at the market, we see that spreads in the high yield market are unusually tight:

Notice high yield hit the red line and promptly turned back.

High yield bonds are a proxy for equity. 

The beauty about bonds is you can observe their compensation to investors for holding the risk, whereas in equities you have to guess at the ‘equity risk premium’.

The two are correlated since high yield names are riskier - like equities.

That suggests equities are close to valued.

Animal spirits are strong. Gamestop is back.

Roaring Kitty is back. But Roaring Kitty also fell down.

(Incidentally, we ran a poll for fun on Thu evening on what to do ahead of Roaring Kitty’s livestream. We selected ‘sell Friday morning’ which was the correct decision.)


We believe the best move here is to have a bias towards ‘quality value’. 

That means avoiding value traps like Walgreens, Medifast, Weight Watchers or SoHo House or any number of flawed businesses.

Instead, focus on quality compounders. 

Look for names with high free cashflow, low P/E, and a material level of buybacks relative to market cap.

There are quite a few names with this profile, and we’ll share other examples soon. 

Especially if markets get cheaper.

We do believe markets can chop from here and that leadership rotation into other categories is expected. 

As we have said many times before, the number one driver of returns for a given security is multiple expansion. That means the P/E ratio of the stock price increases. Then you can only rely earnings growth, which explains only about 30% of a security’s price movement. 

We believe there will be opportunity to make marginal buys in multiple securities we view as ignored but with sound fundamental drivers. 

We also see an economic slowdown. We think it’s wise to position defensively and benefit from the prospect of multiple expansion. 

We think a summer correction is likely. The policy contrast between Trump and Biden is significant. The volatility and uncertainty of those dynamics increase risk aversion. 

We believe we’ll see rate cuts in six to nine months, at the latest.

Small stocks typically benefit within the first six months of a cut cycle. 

However, there’s so much liquidity in the market today, we believe, to some extent, Mr. Market will front run that news.

Small caps also benefit from economic growth. Therefore, if there is a correction, then the names you want to rotate into our likely going to be small caps. If we are lucky enough to add our position at a discount, then that would be a good idea as well.  

Boomer Stocks

The categories we are spending more time on are almost the exact opposite of where we were focusing at the bottom of the October correction. 

We joke these days that we’re buying boomer stocks. After all, the boomers have the money. 

And boomers are spending. 

Take a look at cruise stocks near all time. Have a look at the restaurant sector, which is also incredibly expensive and pulling back.

We flagged Restaurants as a risk a few weeks ago. Names like Chipotle Mexican Grill (we are short) appear to be rolling over… just as Bill Ackman is dumping his shares per the recent 13F.

Although the lower end consumer is weak, the boomers are thriving. 

And the upper 1/3 of consumers drive 2/3 of consumers spending. Plus, household net worth is at a record high.

So the economy, which is increasingly services driven, remains stable.

Our Research

We are focusing on researching names in the insurance sector. We believe the sector offers nice compounders.

Buffett bought insurance in his 13F — markets will follow his cue just like they did when he bought homebuilders last summer.

We also believe now is a good time to buy stocks to have free cash flow low PE ratios and can do buybacks. 

Uranium is Pulling Back

The Uranium theme is pulling back, take a look:

This suggests hot money is leaving certain ecosystems.

That theme needs to bounce now or there could be more risk ahead; you need to be tactical. 

We believe physical uranium is a great idea. But it’s so volatile. You need to pick your entries carefully. Keep an eye on this as it could be attractive in the coming days or weeks.

On China

We spoke to an analyst at a prominent sell side firm and I asked him what he thought about China.

He said he had a recently concluded a roadshow over the past two weeks. None of them had any interest in buying.

Take a look at China:

It’s up sharply since our early Feb capitulation call.

It’s encouraging news that no one wants to buy China. 

That means China is a non-consensus opportunity, and the bad news is priced in.

We bought some Baidu this past week (1 to 2% ish).

We would have preferred to add to our position in TenCent but the name really hasn’t pulled back as much. 

TenCent has a strong competitive advantage given their ownership interest in WeChat, and the role in day-to-day payments and social media. 

China is a very volatile category. 

However, the property sector issues are well known, and the variant perception we have is that it is simply not as bad as 2008. It really isn’t. 

Additionally, the government has plenty of monetary liquidity that it can offer. 

China never experience the kind of inflation we have seen in the West. Further, we are seeing container rates from China improving the past several weeks.

Although the demographic issues facing China are real, we believe that, much like in the United States, dominant technology firms will enjoy a strong competitive advantage in China. 

If you have a three year timeframe, we believe these names can increase in value from 30 to 100%. 

You need to be able to stomach the volatility between now and then.

We saw David Tepper from Apolloosa was buying China, just as we were in Q2. We only see these hedge fund moves after we make our decisions… but we respect the original thought he has. 

Other hedge funds will follow.

Not too long ago we saw images coming out of China of people rushing to buy gold bars as a store of value. 

China retail investors want gold so bad, there are scams cropping up.

In a few years, you will look back and say - yes - that was an unmistakeable sign of capitulation.

Lumida Investing Philosophy

I created a video explaining why, even when you see an opportunity to buy a stock where you expect to bounce, sometimes it doesn’t make sense to do so. 

We made two calls on Lululemon. One was to not buy the stock after they bombed earnings primarily due to the fact that it was more expensive than Abercrombie and Fitch, which was growing faster. 

And then on May 24, we wrote that we expect a bounce in Lululemon. Both calls were correct. 

We encourage you to check out the video because we cover several other topics and share a bit more about our investing philosophy.

We also draw a contrast between Warren Buffett vs. Citadel / Millennium / Two Sigma vs. the JP Morgan’s of the world. 

We also describe Lumida’s approach, which has inspiration from the first two.

A Lumida ETF?

One idea we’re considering at Lumida is launching an ETF. 

Why? Taxes.

Consider a hypothetical investment of which we are buyers. We see the stock go up 80% over a few months. This creates a dilemma: hold and encourage a drop-down or sell?

If we decide to sell and then the stock drop 20% on earnings, that was the right decision. 

What does that have to do with an ETF?

ETFs are tax-efficient because you generally only pay capital gains tax when you sell the actual ETF, not on the underlying trades within the ETF.

As you know, we are long-term thematic top-down and bottoms-up fundamental investors.

But the reality of current markets is that if you are not active and highly tactical, you leave money on the table. You’re also taking more risk than you want.

Capital gains taxes are at risk of going up. 

The best way to mitigate against that risk is to invest in an ETF that shields you from taxes. 

And this is exactly what Berkshire Hathaway has done. Buffett is selling shares of stock regularly. He buys shares in companies like Occidental Petroleum (OXY), and also trims holdings in others. Meanwhile, investors hold the overall portfolio and avoid short-term capital gains taxes.

If you think this is a good idea, and you would participate in a Lumida ETF, please let us know by filling out the poll below:

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I continue to hold this view and indices have retreated since.

Here's a brief summary.

1. The market is shifting from inflation fears to growth fears.

We are seeing deterioration in some leading economic data such as ISM new orders.

Economic surprise index is negative - economists may have caught up to expectations.

Consumer Discretionary has also lagged Staples.

2. Animal spirits are weakening.

We blend a couple factors into a composite signal.

That signal went 'risk off'.

You can see this in the lackluster performance of tech stocks ex-Nvidia, Meta, and Google.

You can also see this in the decline of Crypto Exchange volumes.

3. We have had several parabolas that are now deflating: Software, Restaurants, EVs, Utilities like CEG, etc.

The GLP1 theme continues to work... but it's also a wrecking ball for other categories and names (see Weight Watchers, Planet Fitness).

The AI theme continues to work - but the benefits are narrowing around NVDA and friends.

4. Nvidia is forcing a re-rating of technology stocks.

Simply put, there's NVDA and then all of the rest.

This is the 'Nvidia Correction Hypothesis'

Nvidia is the new 10-Year - it's the safe haven tech trade for a bit.

(It's also overbought.)

5. Equity valuations are high and investors are at their limits.


- High yield bonds spreads are tight. (This is one of my favorite quick methods to gauge valuations.)

You can approximate the equity risk premium by looking at high yield credit spreads.

- Investors realized they are going to have to wait 100+ years to get a return on capital for SaaS

- Chipotle was more expensive than Nvidia on Forward PE

- and on and on...

7. Higher for longer is still making its way thru assets, re-pricing growth stocks

8. Policy uncertainty is high due to election season (see China vs. Energy for example)

There was a Trump Bump effect. China's rally suggests that may be fading.

9. The Momentum Factor is 2 s.d.'s overbought and rolling over. (see chart)

This is why high flying names like CAVA and CMG are struggling, and also why we see a worst to first dynamic.

Negative momentum names like FSLR are coming back.

10. There is no 'Everything Go Up Rally'.

That capital is in.

It's a bifurcated market, and the breadth is narrowing.

11. Earnings expectations are high, while nominal GDP is slowing.

Overall, I believe it's worth having a defensive posture prioritizing companies that have high free cashflow, low valuations, and can compound.

I expect boring stocks that compound - Buffett type names - with good valuations will do well, including quality small caps.

Technology stocks, outside a handful of names, are higher risk.

There may be good bargains that pop out in the next few weeks.

Mexico is on sale today, and energy.

I expect names more expensive than NVDA (weird that this condition even exists and Mr. Market is now fixing it) to continue to re-rate.

Figure we have a few weeks to price all of this in - maybe just before July 4th. Hard to say.

If the Fed were to have dovish comments, I'd change my view.

I don't expect that to happen though, although the public can hallucinate.

There's still a lot of money on the sidelines... and overbought markets tend to have shallow pull-backs.

There's no major shock, but there is increasing risk aversion.

I see drawdown risk in the 5% ish range give or take at the index level.

 Overall, we're in a bull market.

That said, the risk / reward at the moment does not appear favorable.

Momentum Factor


On the macro front, Non-farm payrolls were released this Friday. 

The immediate effect was that interest-rate markets are now pricing in a close to zero probability of a July rate cut

Lumida made a call several months ago that we would not see a Rate cut in June or July. Goldman, who is continuously on the wrong side of coin rates despite the thousands of economists and analysts got it wrong again. 

So did Citibank on interest rate markets more generally.

The fact that interest-rate markets are so often wrong should tell you something about how we feel about the efficient markets hypothesis.

The hard part about getting the ‘higher for longer’ rates calls right over the past year was staying invested anyway. 

‘Higher for longer’ is bearish because higher rates discount cashflow.

But, higher for longer is here because the economy is strong.

Our basic idea is that earning growth is strong for certain sectors, especially large-cap firms, which drive the indices. 

That’s enough to carry markets higher.

We believe ‘higher for longer’ rates play a crucial role in positioning. 

For example, we do not own unprofitable tech stocks, which have very long duration and will be disproportionately punished from higher for longer rates. 

Similarly, we do not own stocks that are more expensive than Nvidia.

Nvidia has a lower duration because it generates massive earnings. Same for Google and Meta.

Altogether, our approach has allowed us to significantly outperform both the Nasdaq and the S&P 500, with less risk. 

Here is the distribution of the performance of mutual funds for the year.

You can check out the Lumida Stocking Stuffer list and timestamps for direct evidence.

The stocking stuffer list is in the top decile of performance of mutual funds- generating 20% in 5 months!

Only Lumia Wealth SMA accounts itself has outperformed the stocking stuffer list.

(That makes sense because we have new ideas, can tax loss harvest, can rotate, can sell, etc.)

If you are looking for a wealth management partner, Lumida is now welcoming a limited number of new clients.

We offer a range of services, alternative investments (such as our CoreWeave deal), white-glove crypto management, to public equity management, and high-touch family office services, including trust, tax, and estate planning.

Ready to explore? Click here to fill out our form to start the discovery process.

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Reach out to Lumida to see the performance. We are happy to share statistics. 

That isn’t to say we don’t make mistakes. We bought Uranium one day too early. We exited our homebuilders hedge one day too early. 

We should have owned more Google, Meta, Nvidia, ETHE. 

We should have kept our small cap winners longer—several of which beat Mag 7 names for longer.

There are plenty of things we could have done better. We are always studying what worked and what didn’t work and trying to improve our decision-making.

To that end, we are hiring a Business Operations leader / Chief of Staff who would work directly with Ram.

Check out the role, and please help us get the word out!

On Brazil:

I mentioned on 12/28 that ‘Brazil is overbought’

Turns out the market topped that week!

Update: Brazil is looking cheap now.

I could see ‘catch up’ money buying names in Brazil soon.

We aren’t quite there yet to pull the trigger ourselves, but we are getting close.

Also, we believe Telehealth provider HIMS is wildly overbought. 

The stocks is almost as expensive as Nvidia, and they are facing increased competition.

It’s getting a lot easier to find overbought names these days.

Company Earnings

Tech, Media, Telecom:

  • CrowdStrike reported strong growth in its Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) and subscription revenues, driven by robust demand for its cybersecurity solutions

  • DocuSign's subscription revenues continued to grow, although its professional services revenue declined


  • Campbell Soup Company beat expectations for both earnings and revenue, with its Meals & Beverages and Snack segments both reporting year-over-year growth

  • Lululemon also performed well, beating earnings and revenue expectations, driven by strong comparable sales growth and positive performance in the Americas region

  • Victoria's Secret beat earnings expectations but matched revenue guidance, and the company is forecasting a challenging fiscal year 2024 with expected net sales declines

Overall, the tech sector continues to demonstrate resilience, with companies like CrowdStrike and DocuSign benefiting from robust demand for their products and services. Companies like Campbell Soup Company and Lululemon reported good results in the consumer sector, while Victoria's Secret is anticipating a more challenging environment in the coming year.


Risk Alert: AI Disrupting Hard Drives Next?

Does the world need old-school hard disk drives in a transitioning world to DRAM and solid-state drives?

I could see stocks like WDC and STX seeing real pressure.

We don't have a position in these...yet. Am I wrong?

The super interesting piece about AI disruption... unlike Internet which was 'new economy' vs old economy (e.g., bricks and mortar, telco, bookstores, etc.)

AI disruption is pitting tech against tech.

‘AI dramatically empowers capital relative to labor’

There is not much discussion on how AI will benefit ‘owners of capital’ significantly.

AI will also destroy ‘owners of capital’ on the wrong side of AI just like the Internet destroyed newspapers (e.g., SAAS companies, accounting, etc).

That said, there is also a ‘barbell’ effect.

Human activity that is AI disruption proof (e.g., mechanics, nurses, etc) and real assets that are AI proof (e.g., land, leisure, and housing) will increase in wage and price.

For the same reason that the advent of washers & driers actually made ‘help’ more expensive.

When the marginal rate of productivity goes up substantially, skilled and unskilled wage rates increase due to greater bid for (your or someone else’s) time.

Today, the white collar jobs are still in the ‘productivity gain’ phase.

Today, People get more done with less.

In a few years, we will be in the displacement phase.

People will get more done…with less people.

As Nic Carter says, we will have the problem of putting horses out to pasture - except they are people.

I am more optimistic on this front.

The scope of human creativity and niche enterprises we cannot conceive of will expand.

A new generation of AI first entrepreneurs will take out much of SaaS and old school business models ranging from H&R Block to Merrill Lynch.

Lumida Wealth is working on the latter.

Dan Nystedt on ARM

Arm aims to win more than 50% of the Windows PC market in 5-years, CEO Rene Haas said, noting Microsoft has made a significant commitment in software and developer tools to ensure programs run well on Arm-based chips, Reuters reports. 

Arm is seeking to usurp x86-based chips from Intel and AMD, which have long dominated the market. Qualcomm unveiled new Arm-based PC chips last month, the Snapdragon X series, and Monday showed off over 20 laptops from a range of vendors, including Acer, ASUS, Dell, and Lenovo. 

We interviewed Dan on this podcast, tune in, and don’t forget to subscribe.

Digital Assets

Trump has declared himself a ‘Crypto President’.

We’ve come a long way from the end of FTX.

Quote of the Week

"The greatest opportunity for making a mistake in the market is not studying your companies and not buying your companies at the right price." - Charlie Munger

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The information in this material has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable. While all reasonable care has been taken to ensure that the facts stated in this material are accurate and that the forecasts, opinions and expectations contained herein are fair and reasonable, Lumida, Inc. and Lumida Wealth Management LLC (collectively Lumida) make no representations or warranties whatsoever the completeness or accuracy of the material provided, except with respect to any disclosures relative to Lumida. Accordingly, no reliance should be placed on the accuracy, fairness or completeness of the information contained in this material. Any data discrepancies in this material could be the result of different calculations and/or adjustments. Lumida accepts no liability whatsoever for any loss arising from any use of this material or its contents, and neither Lumida nor any of its respective directors, officers or employees, shall be in any way responsible for the contents hereof, apart from the liabilities and responsibilities that may be imposed on them by the relevant regulatory authority in the jurisdiction in question, or the regulatory regime thereunder. Opinions,forecasts or projections contained in this material represent Lumida’s current opinions or judgment as of the day of the material only and are therefore subject to change without notice. Periodic updates may be provided on companies/industries based on company-specific developments or announcements, market conditions or any other publicly available information. There can be no assurance that future results or events will be consistent with any such opinions, forecasts or projections, which represent only one possible outcome. Furthermore, such opinions, forecasts or projections are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions that have not been verified, and future actual results or events could differ materially. The value of, or income from, any investments referred to in this material may fluctuate and/or be affected by changes in exchange rates. All pricing is indicative as of the close of market for the securities discussed, unless otherwise stated. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Accordingly, investors may receive back less than originally invested. This material is not intended as an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any financial instrument. The opinions and recommendations herein do not take into account individual client circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended as recommendations of particular securities, financial instruments or strategies to particular clients. The recipients of this material must make their own independent decisions regarding any securities or financial instruments mentioned herein and should seek advice from such independent financial, legal, tax or other adviser as they deem necessary. Lumida may trade as a principal on the basis of its views and research, and it may also engage in transactions for its own account or for its clients’ accounts in a manner inconsistent with the views taken in this material, and Lumida is under no obligation to ensure that such other communication is brought to the attention of any recipient of this material. Others within Lumida may take views that are inconsistent with those taken in this material. Employees of Lumida not involved in the preparation of this material may have investments in the financial instruments or securities (or derivatives of such financial instruments or securities) mentioned in this material and may trade them in ways different from those discussed in this material. This material is not an advertisement for or marketing of any issuer, its products or services, or its securities in any jurisdiction.