March 23, 2020-Governments Around the World Announce Record-Setting Fiscal Stimulus Measures to Counteract Coronavirus-Led Economic Downturn. Will This Help Combat the Global Recession?
Central Banks do their Part in Fight Against COVID-19 by Implementing Substantial Monetary Stimulus. Will Quantitative Easing Work?
Market Volatility Creates Unprecedented Opportunity in Merger Arbitrage as Deals Continue to Get Done. What’s the Best Way to Capitalize on This?
Welcome investors to the Absolute Return Podcast. Your source for stock market analysis, global macro musings and hedge fund investment strategies. Your hosts Julian Klymochko and Michael Kesslering aim to bring you the knowledge and analysis you need to become a more intelligent and wealthier investor. This episode is brought to you by accelerate financial technologies. Accelerate because performance matters. Find out more at www.Accelerateshares.Com.
Julian Klymochko: Welcome, ladies and gents, to episode 59 of The Absolute Return Podcast. I am your host Julian Klymochko.
Michael Kesslering: And I Mike Kesslering.
Julian Klymochko: Today is Friday, March 20, 2020. Got an Interesting podcast this week brought to you by work from home. We got our mobile operation set up. Mike is manning the trading desk and I am at the home office recording this from a Mac book, and we’re going to do it like this and hopefully the quality is okay forever, but a number of important topics.
- Number one. Governments around the world, they announce record setting fiscal stimulus measures, basically a fiscal bazooka to counteract the coronavirus-led economic downturn, which has seemingly become a global recession. Will this record setting fiscal stimulus help combat this global recession?
- We are going to chat a lot about what’s going on there, and what different governments are doing in terms of fiscal stimulus.
- In addition to that, central banks are doing their part in their fight against COVID-19 by implementing substantial monetary stimulus, basically cutting interest rates, implementing quantitative easing, but will this work?
- And lastly, a market update as market volatility creates unprecedented opportunities in the merger arbitrage space. As deals continue to get done, what’s the best way to capitalize on this?
Governments Around The World, They Announce Record Setting Fiscal Stimulus Measure
Julian Klymochko: So to start-off. We are talking about potential 1 trillion fiscal stimulus that Republicans are talking about in the U.S. in order to basically jolt the U.S. economy and offset the massive downturn caused by COVID-19. Now this proposal, this one trillion dollar fiscal stimulus proposal includes checks to individuals and to businesses, so-called helicopter money, money just flying from the sky, not literally. It will just be electronic. Nonetheless, this is meant to keep individuals and businesses afloat as commerce grinds to a halt. Everyone staying at home. Many frontline workers can’t work from home, so they’re unemployed just due to social distancing and self-isolation measures which are being implemented to stop the spread of the virus and ultimately get us through this whole situation. This is in addition to what the White House and Congress have already agreed on more than $100 billion in funding to tackle different aspects of this whole Coronavirus pandemic and its effects on the economy but they realized that a much more expansive fiscal plan has become apparent as these cases are rising sharply.
I mean, if we look at what’s going on globally, almost 260,000 cases confirmed, over 11,000 deaths now in the U.S., over 16,000 cases, which is just increasingly becoming more and more dire every day with the risk of really overwhelming hospitals unless we put a stop to it. And the best way to stop it really is through social distancing and self-isolation. So U.S. looking to implement 1 trillion dollar fiscal stimulus. This still needs to go and be supported by Democrats, which could be a bit of a battle.
Meanwhile, in Canada, the Canadian government implemented an $82 billion fiscal stimulus package. This is to support Canadians and businesses affected by COVID-19 and includes $27 billion in direct support to Canadians and $55 billion in tax deferrals across the pond. The German government is seven. Setting up a $500 billion euro rescue fund for banks and corporations. Really, all these economies becoming overwhelmed by the Coronavirus crisis. A lot of people underestimated it, including myself. Who knew it would expand this quickly?
If you compare it to past viral outbreaks such as SARS, EBOLA, MERS, etc. Those ones tended to fizzle out and not really transfer globally. However, this one has become much, much bigger on a global scale and led to really a global recession in which economies basically just had to shut down as people had to stay home.
Governments starting to implement substantial measures. For example, today the California governor ordered 40 million people to stay home in the world’s fifth largest economy. Basically just looking to stay inside and not go outside. Have some numbers here from economist Morgan Stanley said a worldwide recession is now, it’s a base case; they are expecting global growth to a fault, 0.9 percent this year. Goldman Sachs economists predicting growth of 1.25 percent on a global basis this year, which fits the definition of global recession as defined as less than 2.5 percent global GDP growth. S&P Global voicing its opinion, expecting global growth to be in the range of 1.15 percent. So a lot going on here in terms of governments implementing various fiscal stimulus measures, just massive fiscal stimulus, potentially 1 trillion or higher in the US.
It is going to involve helicopter money and direct deposits to individuals in order to get them through this trying time. What are your thoughts on this fiscal bazooka that governments are coming out with? Do you think it’ll be effective in getting us through this challenging time?
Michael Kesslering: Fiscal bazooka, indeed. I mean fifteen hundred dollar checks to Americans now. It is not believed that this would go directly back into the economy in terms of going back in to restaurants. Some of the service, tourism industries. This is literally to get people by to pay their rent, to pay some of their medical expenses. With the checks, they are looking to cut for American citizens that would actually exclude individuals earning over seventy five thousand dollars a year or couples earning over one hundred and fifty thousand dollars a year. So you are looking at the area of the economy that’s really hit most by this. Those are families where a fifteen hundred dollar check. This would be a big deal for them, especially we’re going to be seeing massive amounts of unemployment, especially in areas of the gig economy, where they don’t have as much of the protections as, say, a traditional corporate job.
Moving to Canada as well. A response by the government, but as well, it was kind of a little bit of working with the Canadian banks as well. As there will be things such as mortgage payment deferrals, which was a decision made in conjunction with the Canadian bags. So you are seeing them kind of pull out all the stops as well as trying to provide some relief to small businesses that I mean, they’re looking at it, especially in the U.S. They are looking at certain bailout packages for industries, but you know, right now as well, there is not going to be as much bailout money for small businesses. It is nice to see that we get some relief.
Now, one thing I did want to touch on here with regards to the fiscal stimulus and overall government actions is we all have opinions of what the government should do in this scenario. What typically doesn’t happen is the entire market reacting to what our opinions of what the government should do? And in the case this week with a very famous activist investor, Bill Ackman, he actually went on CNBC this week and this was on Monday. When he went on CNBC, he had outlined in a series of tweets what he thought the government should do. By the time he was done speaking a couple hours later, stocks had been halted while he was speaking, and we are down about 5 percent in total from when he had started speaking to a couple hours later. There was some recovery into the end of the day, but really just a crazy market reaction, and what this came down to, what was he saying to get the market to react negatively? Well, he was effectively calling for the government to impose a 30-day spring break where the whole economy would shut down and the government would pay wages. Additionally, he said that Hilton, which is one of his largest holdings, that he is long.He said that it is a potential zero along with every other hotel company if the government does not take the action that he’s recommending.
Also said that the vast majority of KKR and Blackstone’s LBO over the last number of years that they were all going to zero.
Julian Klymochko: The private equity firm going to zero.
Michael Kesslering: Yes, and after the interview. It was reported that he called Blackstone to let them know that he was buying shares. Blackstone is heading down 34 percent over the last month. This ranged as well for him dropping personal anecdotes, which he was obviously quite emotional about to then, you know, recommending that Elon Musk convert his factories to produce ventilators. It was really just a bizarre moment in market history where you are watching this unfold on live television and literally, as he is speaking the stock markets get halted in North America. It was really a very bizarre thing to watch. I don’t think I’ve ever really seen any individual investor being able to impact the market in such a way.
Julian Klymochko: The problem these days is that media, social media, traditional media people are perhaps paying too close of attention to it and are too affected by it. I mean, watching CNBC during the middle of the day and that discouraging you and having you sell investments because of what some guy in New York tells you, it’s not a good idea, but certainly isn’t unprecedented. I remember David Tepper going on. Must have been eight or nine years ago with his famously bullish comments on the market having a big rally off the back of what he said.
Nonetheless, it should really have a lot of bearing on long term investors. Nonetheless, despite all these tremendous fiscal stimulus measures, the Dow Jones crossed below 20000 to the downside for the first time since early 2017. So markets continued to take a hit this week. One of the worst weeks since 2008 after a horrific week, last week. Talking about yields on Treasury bills, short term bills, they turned negative and oil prices, my god, the volatility in oil, they actually hit their lowest level in 18 years. That is right, since 2002. They just got absolutely crushed last week. This week, sorry. Then yesterday they had one of their biggest rallies. It was actually their highest percentage gain on record in terms of oil price from such an incredibly low level, only to go on today to crash over 10 percent. Then, you know, just markets in general have lost about 35 percent since their peak just about a month ago. So certainly wild times, the fiscal stimulus, it is going to take a while to work its way through the economy. It is not just the government’s doing their part, it is the central banks as well. For example, the U.S. Federal Reserve announced another emergency, half a percent interest rate cut, so they cut 50 basis points last weekend on Sunday, this took interest rates down to near zero. That is right. The same level that they cut them down to in the global financial crisis, 2008/2009.
They also announced 700 billion of so-called quantitative easing, QE. This is basically unlimited with no weekly or monthly cap on purchases. Some people expect that this total 700 billion amount may go higher, and what this 700 billion goes into, it goes in to buying Treasury bonds and mortgage backed securities. The swiftness in which they have been executing on this plan so far has been incredible. They already purchased $150 billion in securities on Thursday and Friday and this is on top of $125 billion in purchases earlier this week. The Fed has bought more than half of the 500 billion in Treasury securities in one week with little sign of this market malfunction really fixing itself. Despite nearly half or a few hundred billion in the Fed’s purchases of these Treasury securities. So it’s really just pointing, and market participants are starting to price in perhaps at 700 billion isn’t enough because they already blasted through a large chunk of it with seemingly no effect. If we look to the last precedent, the last time the Fed effected quantitative easing, which they commenced in 2008, and executed until 2014, they bought three trillion in securities. So perhaps they could go up to that or higher, but the market is thinking that that 700 billion in quantitative easing, the Fed will have to step up those purchases just because there is a lot of turmoil in the market these days. Wacky things going on in all corners of the market. If you want to talk spreads, negative yields on treasuries, corporate bonds, which we are going to get into, merger arbitrage spreads. Basically, it’s affecting everything in the market and its being driven by liquidity and fear just over this massive corona virus panic.
So aside from what the Federal Reserve is doing in the US and the Bank of Canada, they implemented another 0.5 percent or 50 basis point cut of its benchmark rate on an emergency basis. They previously cut earlier this month at the regular meetings. They went on this week to effect an emergency cut. Then the European Central Bank launched a 750 billion euro monetary stimulus program, quantitative easing, which includes a potential to backstop the Eurozone’s weakest governments such as Greece and Italy, who certainly needs it these days. Additionally, in Europe, the Bank of England, they cut their benchmark interest rate to a record low, I believe even lower than in 2008. They also said they would commence quantitative easing with 200 billion pounds of purchases of U.K. government bonds globally, at least twenty-two emerging markets, central banks have cut rate, in this week alone. Some examples: Egypt cutting 3 percent, Ghana, Turkey and Vietnam all cut 100 basis points. It is really global coordinated action on behalf of central banks trying to stimulate the economy just to get around this rough patch caused by COVID-19.
Now in Canada. Closer to home with that, a central bank interest rate cut. The Canadian banks, they did slash prime rates to match the 50-basis point cut. If you are a borrower, so you have a variable rate mortgage, prime rate coming down by half a percent will help you in that respect. Then if we want to talk about Treasury bills-Negative rates, I mean, that is a crazy idea. We have seen it in Europe. We have seen it in Japan, but in North America, specifically, U.S. Treasury bills. This is kind of unprecedented, isn’t it?
Michael Kesslering: Yeah, absolutely. Right now, you are seeing the three month U.S. Treasuries. They were yielding about 1.5 percent at the end of February. They are now about negative .02 percent, so two basis points the negative in terms of their yield. And, you know, really just pricing in that you’re going to see the Fed lower into the negative likely in the near future.
Julian Klymochko: Not just that. I think a lot of these crazy market moves and you’re seeing it in basically every different space on the market. It is this liquidity driven. For example, you talk about corporate bond funds and what is going on there. People are selling everything, they are selling everything. They want to buy U.S. dollars and they want to buy treasuries, and that is it. Right, like no one wants to hold anything else besides treasuries and they’ve gotten bid up such that Treasury bills, those with the 30 day maturities, etc. Are now yielding slightly negative just to insatiable demand, right?
Michael Kesslering: Absolutely. Some of that bad demand also just coming from the Fed itself. I did want to fun a little anecdote that I came across this morning across the Bloomberg terminal was that the Bank of Russia is actually still keeping rate increases on the table, which I thought was just absolutely absurd in this environment. That there is any possibility that they are looking to increase their rates at this point in time.
Julian Klymochko: Yes. Especially since their economy is run basically solely off of the price of oil, which has been absolutely slaughtered down over 60 percent year to date.
Michael Kesslering: Yeah, absolutely, it just seemed like definite posturing. The other interesting thing to highlight here is that you look back to when quantitative easing was first brought about in the global financial crisis back in 2008-2009. At that time, all the pundits and many investors, quite a few that I highly respect, all they could talk about was the fear of quantitative easing springing upon really like hyperinflation. That was the big worry, so you saw hedges to inflation such as gold. They were doing well during that time period, but this time around, the quantitative easing, you’re seeing nothing of the sort. Inflation really isn’t being mentioned at this point in time, and if anything, most of the economies are just worried about going into a deflationary state. It is interesting in terms of how the market is responding to this.
Julian Klymochko: And it’s not just the quantitative easing that people would expect inflation to rise in the future, but helicopter money, this massive fiscal stimulus where it is printing money and giving it to people, you figure at some point that would come back to bite them in terms of dramatic inflation. Thus far, we have not seen any price action in terms of gold, which is, I believe, down slightly year to date and other asset classes that investors would prefer and that sort of inflationary environment.
Michael Kesslering: Absolutely, and just I guess, you know, looking in Canada, looking in our local market, Julian, do you see there being any potential for quantitative easing in Canada?
Julian Klymochko: I don’t think so. Historically, the Bank of Canada, They never got into that. They made it through the global financial crisis without any quantitative easing, and they seem to be pretty proud of that. I am not sure if that is a tool that they will use. You saw how quickly that the Trudeau government implemented over 80 billion dollars in fiscal stimulus. I think that is the way that they want to enact any sort of measures to counteract the downturn, due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
And so I think they will stick with that, perhaps add additional fiscal stimulus if possible, but the Bank of Canada seemingly hasn’t been too interested in quantitative easing. Historically, they have not hinted otherwise. I mean, it is something that we will see. One other thing I wanted to comment. We are talking about these crazy market moves. I wanted to comment on what happened in investment grade bonds. What we saw here is just absolutely stunning. The outflows from U.S. investment grade bond funds has just been astounding. It was a staggering thirty five point six billion, which is by far the highest on record by an order of magnitude, and just the price action, U.S. investment grade bond funds, which are historically a very safe asset class, they have plunged over 13 percent so far this month. Now, calling this a record monthly loss really understates just how bad this drawdown is. For example, if we go back to the last major crisis in September 2008, when Lehman Brothers was collapsing, U.S. investment grade bonds they fell by less than 8 percent. This decline, north of 13 percent, is far, far greater than when Lehman Brothers went bankrupt. To put this further in perspective, the largest U.S. investment grade bond ETF is given up about a decade worth of gains in a matter of days.
And in addition to that, the world’s biggest actively managed bond fund, the one hundred thirty seven billion income fund, is down 12 percent this month. For context, historically, their worst month prior to this month was October 2008. When the world was ending, that fund was only down 4.8 percent. So now, their loss is almost triple that record and it just gives listeners a sense of the calamity out there. Just these wacky markets, people selling absolutely everything, trying to get their hands on U.S. dollars and treasuries, even very safe investment grade corporate bonds. No one wants to buy these. We see it in municipal bonds. We see it in basically every asset class leverage loans, one that we wanted to talk about as well is the merger arbitrage market. What we’re saying there is just due to this unprecedented volatility, the VIX index, also known as the fear index that actually hit its all-time record this week, exceeding 80 I believe it, at 85, which would have been even higher than the three times it closed above 80 and in October and November of 2008.
Julian Klymochko: We are basically seeing an unprecedented opportunity set in merger arbitrage where spreads historically, the yield that you could generate by investing in merger arbitrage, was generally around 4 to 6 percent annualized. Those have blown out to north of 20 percent, which is just absolutely mind blowing. It is unprecedented; we have never seen a market like this. And people are basically selling everything that’s liquidity driven sell off irrespective of quality of a deal where you’re even having the highest quality merger arbitrage transactions now yielding double digits and the medium quality are yielding 100 percent annualized or higher. It is really a tremendous opportunity for investors, but you have seen spreads just blow out, haven’t we?
Michael Kesslering: Absolutely spreads and generally. Just to go back very quickly. As I forgot to mention, just some of the other weird movements in corporate bonds, the lowest rung of investment grade bonds, Triple B were actually performing worse than the highest rung of high yield bonds at Double B. Typically you would see that the greater the quality, the better they would perform in a downturn.. They are actually performing worse. Which I just thought was a very interesting anecdote in terms of spreads falling out as well. You are seeing the high yield spread all out here.
But in terms of merger arb. I mean, right now the market is implying that 40 percent of deals will break or be repriced downwards. Typically, you are seeing in the 6 to 8 percent, at least that is what it was prior to the meltdown but even in crisis scenarios of the past, you know, looking back to 2008, you were in kind of the 15 percent of deal breaks and not this 40 percent. As you had mentioned, 20 percent implied yield. It’s not just merger ARB. You have SPAC.
Julian Klymochko: And SPAC, just for listener. Can we tell them what a SPAC is?
Michael Kesslering: Yes, it is Special Purpose Acquisition Company. Basically just a cash shell where the cash that’s raised upon in the IPO just goes into trust and increase interest invested in treasuries, which we had just discussed while they look for an acquisition and you as the unit holder of a SPAC will have the opportunity to redeem at whatever that trust amount is on the redemption date. There is a specified redemption date, so it is really a risk free trade for arbitrage shares. And literally the cash is just sitting in the trust, accruing interest. And you’re seeing these yielding double digit IRR where I mean, anytime I’ve looked at these in the past, very rare to find one over 3 percent, whereas there’s multiple in the universe that are in the double digits. Then going back just a little bit to merger ARB as well, you look at some of the high quality deals out there in the universe. Just to give an example of this, you look at the Tiffany-LVMH merger, which is expected to be completed in the next couple of months. I believe in May is the kind of estimated completion date, but it’s currently at a 10 percent growth spread, which would be over 100 percent annualized, whereas it was trading at a 1.5 percent growth spread in February. When you look back about a week ago, it was even as high as 13 percent before it was leaked that LVMH was considering buying up shares in the open market prior to close, which is a highly unusual tactic. But LVMH was likely just looking at how wide this spread was, especially in comparison to what a deal of this quality would be in the past, as well as looking at LVMH, It’s one of Europe’s largest companies. They have a long track record of acquisitions during downturns, and this is a strategic deal so it does tick a lot of the boxes in terms of being a safe deal. It is just sitting at, you know, double digit spread. You know, really with no underlying rationale for why it should be.
Julian Klymochko: Yeah, I am really pounding the table on this asset class. I mean, there is a lot of tremendous opportunities out there. I think merger arbitrage is a key one that investors should focus on because we want to separate facts from the fear in the market. There is a lot of this liquidity driven selling where investors have to sell, and there is just a tremendous lack of liquidity on many asset classes, including equities, bonds. And that’s why you’ve seen them tank so much. Merger arbitrage is no different where you have had a lot of hedge funds de-grossing their book, which means reducing their long and their shorts, reducing risk, really trying to mitigate that volatility and mitigate losses. What you are see is a selling at any price type attitude, irrespective of the fundamental thesis behind the position. If we actually talk about facts and what is going on in merger arbitrage is number one, there has been 13 deals completed month to date, which is in the past three weeks that has been the extent of this whole coronavirus panic has really expanded tremendously over the past three weeks and we did see a private equity buyout get completed, which was a Digital Colony and EQT acquisition of Zayo Group.
In addition to that, we saw a dozen other deals in Canada and the U.S. closed, no deals have broken or repriced as of yet, we will see. Obviously, this environment has increased risk in terms of access to capital and propensity or desire to close on behalf of acquirers. But let’s also look at what’s actually happening instead of what people are fearing. Deals are still getting done, for example, last week Macquarie triumph over a competitor, Brookfield, for the acquisition of Cincinnati Bell. That was a tremendous a bidding war, so buyers are putting down the funds to make these big acquisitions.
I saw Brookfield active in the market. They bought a stake in TransAlta, so big private equity firms still active in the market. Now, this week, I should note that private equity firm KKR, they announced one of the largest leveraged buyouts of the year. They scooped a garbage recycler, Viridor in a four point two billion pound deal; this is out in in Europe. Then in the US, two parties continued to bid for television broadcaster Tenia, which valued the company north of four billion dollars. You are seeing a lot of strategic and financial deals. Well, I should not say a lot, but you are still seeing some perhaps activity is down, another deal that I should mention this week: Brookfield large private equity player announced the acquisition of TerraForm Power, which was nearly 10 billion dollar deal. So significant transactions are still being announced. Significant transactions are being completed. We have not seen anything fail yet. We have not seen anything repriced yet.
And currently in the market, every single leveraged buyout is priced as if it’s going to break, and if that was the case, why would KKR go out two days ago and announce one of the largest private equity deals of the year if they weren’t planning on closing it? So that is something that investors should take into account, not be scared by the market action, but really look to capitalize on it. I think merger arbitrage is an asset class that investors should be looking at closely these days. And it’s not just some traditional merger arbitrage. As you indicated, SPAC Arbitrage, which is one of the lowest risk trades out there where there are these cash rich companies that just own US treasuries allowing you to buy it at discounts as high as 5, 6, 7 percent, such that on an annualized basis of the redemption is in less than a year and you can actually generate double digit annualized returns by just buying these and redeeming them. They have a fixed term, typically two years in which they give you the money back, which is $10 dollars plus interest over the two years that they had to seek a deal. It is basically what I call free money out there, and it’s just a tremendous opportunity in the market for investors that they should be looking at, don’t be sitting in cash.You have to look at be looking at either buying high quality equities, high quality bonds, or looking at strategies such as merger arbitrage, SPAC arbitrage, etc.
Where there are these generational buying opportunities, the like of which we have never seen since 2008, 2009, and in some cases even exceeding that generational buying opportunity. So it is it’s no time to waste. Who knows how long this opportunity will last, but there is market participants desperate for liquidity. If you are liquidity provider in this market, you can get very generous terms. Mike, like you said, double digit annualized returns for the lowest risk of arbitrage deals and then the low risk merger arbitrage space, 20 percent annualized plus and the medium risk merger arbitrage space. Yields north of hundred percent, which is if we are talking about average yield in the merger arbitrage space, I believe that’s around 22 percent annualized in a normal environment that is around five. You saw a tremendous widening of spreads sitting and in many asset classes, it is a really, really crazy market. People desperate for liquidity and desperate for U.S. dollars and treasuries. Anything else on this one?
Michael Kesslering: No, nothing else from my side.
Julian Klymochko: All right. Well, that is it. Investors and short-sellers traders. That’s episode 59 of The Absolute Return Podcast. If you enjoyed it, you can always check out more at absolutereturnpodcast.com. Please leave us a review, and if you want to ask questions or get in touch with us, you can follow me on Twitter. My handle is at @Julian Klymochkothat isK-L-Y-M-O-C-H-K-O, and Mike your Twitter handle is?
Michael Kesslering: It is M_Kesslering.
Julian Klymochko: All right, and that wraps it up for this week’s episode until next week, keep your head on straight, don’t get too freaked out just on this crazy market moves. And let’s look to be opportunistic here. Opportunistic and enterprising investors don’t worry about the day to day, but keep your eyes set on your long term financial goals and we will check with you soon. Wish you the best of luck in your investing, cheers.
Thanks for tuning in to the Absolute Return Podcast. This episode was brought to you by Accelerate Financial Technologies. Accelerate, because performance matters. Find out more at www.AccelerateShares.com. The views expressed in this podcast to the personal views of the participants and do not reflect the views of Accelerate. No aspect of this podcast constitutes investment legal or tax advice. Opinions expressed in this podcast should not be viewed as a recommendation or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any securities or investment strategies. The information and opinions in this podcast are based on current market conditions and may fluctuate and change in the future. No representation or warranty expressed or implied is made on behalf of Accelerate as to the accuracy or completeness of the information contained in this podcast. Accelerate does not accept any liability for any direct indirect or consequential loss or damage suffered by any person as a result relying on all or any part of this podcast and any liability is expressly disclaimed.