Good morning!

It's extremely quiet for results again today - CEOs and FDs are probably lying on beaches, or their yachts, at the moment.

So I'll circle back to some remarkably good economic data & surveys out yesterday. This is reinforcing my conviction that Brexit has only had a small, and temporary impact. As I've mentioned before, you have to take a view on the macro picture, otherwise you really can't invest with any particular logic - unless your strategy is to buy & hold forever.

The devaluation of sterling is very positive for any UK company which makes things, and sells them abroad, or sells them in the UK against competition from imports. The UK just got a lot more competitive, thanks to sterling's devaluation. That's the whole point of floating exchange rates - that struggling countries adjust & become competitive again through devaluation of their currency. This is the gigantic flaw in the Eurozone - there's no mechanism for such adjustments to happen, other than deep recessions to crush wages & asset prices lower.

The problem with a devaluing currency, is that it drives up inflation, because imported goods & raw materials become more expensive. So I do think we need to prepare for higher inflation next year, and that could prove difficult. Mind you, sterling has recovered c.2-3% from its low, on the more positive UK economic outlook.

The Office for National Statistics published a report yesterday on July retail sales. It makes very interesting reading. Sales volumes were up a remarkable 5.9% in Jul 2016 compared with Jul 2015. Although this is flattered by price inflation being negative at -2.0%. So putting those two together, the overall value of retail sales rose by 3.6%, which is probably the most meaningful figure.

EDIT: I forgot to mention, the online sales growth is remarkable - it's up 16.7% for Jul 2016 vs. Jul 2015. Now, I would treat that with caution, as am not sure how they're measuring it. However, there's no denying that online is being enthusiastically embraced by Brits. Therefore, I am very focused on good online businesses, with a decent profit margin (e.g. Boohoo.Com (LON:BOO) ) - as opposed to low margin stuff-shifters, like Ocado (LON:OCDO) , AO World (LON:AO.) , and arguably ASOS

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