Investment Insights are written by Angeles' CIO Michael Rosen
Michael has more than 30 years experience as an institutional portfolio manager, investment strategist, trader and academic.
11 November is celebrated in the US as Veteran’s Day and throughout Europe as Armistice Day, marking the armistice ending the First World War in 1918. Government agencies and banks are closed for the holiday (but we’re working here at Angeles!).
11 November, as Armistice Day or Veteran’s Day, has recently been displaced by a new holiday, created just 5 years ago, by Jack Ma, honoring not our war dead or our military veterans, but a far more important and over-looked group, long-forgotten, scorned and abused: the single consumer.
Seeing the unfair neglect of this group, who suffer in stoney silence with no partner to exchange gifts on Valentine’s Day, Jack Ma decided that single people should buy themselves gifts on Single’s Day. Only coincidentally, even unconsciously, would this selfless act of public service benefit in some modest way Mr. Ma’s company.
Well, the numbers are in. In the past 24 hours, on the Alibaba platform alone, $9.3 billion of gifts were purchased, representing 278 million discrete transactions. To put this in perspective, the two biggest shopping days in the US are Black Friday and Cyber Monday which, combined, last year generated $2.9 billion of sales.
We are grateful to Jack Ma that China’s singles won’t feel so lonely after this day. Or will they?