I am a big fan of alternative indices. It is one of the reasons I created my Cricket Portfolio Index. The Big Mac Index and similarly the iPhone index are interesting. The variation of those indices by UBS which takes into account the cost of labour is even more accurate. I love their research which shows the number of days it would take to buy an iPhone X. The index which fascinates me the most is the Christmas Price Index. On a more serious note, my favourite investable index is the FTSE RAFI Index. It can be accessed through Invesco. The tickers of these indices are PAF, PXF, PDN and PXH. I also prefer EWC which gives indirect exposure to companies that have exposure to commodities than futures-based ETF.
In 2010 I wrote a post on the relationship of the purchase (or lack of it) of condoms and chocolates to the economy. At that time I crudely monitored this theory by comparing the performance of Reckitt Benckiser (RB) to Nestle. Since then both of these companies have increased their product range. In 2017 the health division of RB of which Durex is a part of contributed to 60% of the RB group’s net revenue. More importantly, was the news that Telemos Capital acquired a majority a majority stake in Lovehoney. Similarly, the product range and the area allocated to the condoms section keeps increasing while that of chocolates decreases. The age range between the people buying products from those aisles has increased over the years. At the same time, chocolate companies are coming up with creative flavours in order to maintain their customer base. These are signs that the economy in the U.K. is on an upward trend.
I briefly mentioned in my post in 2010 that I would call the index “The Contraceptives and Confectionary Index (CONCON)” or “The Chocolate and Condom Index (CHOCO). Now though I think “The Valentine Index” is a better name. It will be interesting to see if there is a tangible and realistic way to develop this index. Until then it will remain in the back burner of my mind.
Happy Valentine’s Day and as always I look forward to your thoughts and comments whether positive or not.