Complete Intelligence


BFM 89.9: Should The Fed Have Gone For 50bp?

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The Morning Run podcast by BFM 89.9 featured Tony Nash, CEO of Complete Intelligence, discussing the state of the US economy, market movements, and supply chains. The podcast began with a brief overview of the previous day’s market performances. The key US markets had ended in the green, while all Asian markets were in the red, except for the FBMKLCI, which was up by 0.3%.

The podcast host then discussed with Tony the state of the US economy. The US retail sales in January increased the most in two years, and the home builder sentiment rose in February by the most since 2020. Meanwhile, US inflation rose by 0.5% in January. According to Tony, these indicators suggest that there is still demand, and consumers are still willing to spend. Companies are able to raise prices pretty dramatically, resulting in more revenue and faster growth, even if the volume of sales is slightly lower. Tony believed that the Federal Reserve will continue to raise interest rates. He felt that the Fed should have kept the foot on the brake a little more in the last meeting when they hiked by 50. He thinks that the interest rate will remain at 25 for the next three meetings, but the question is how much beyond that will they raise it.

The podcast then moved on to discuss company performance, particularly in the tech industry. Cisco delivered strong results and beat street expectations, suggesting that companies still have money for capex. Tony believed that companies are having to build out more robust technology infrastructure for their existing operations, which is good for tech infrastructure companies like Cisco. However, there is a divergence in the tech industry, with old tech like HP Enterprise and Cisco doing better than new tech like Apple and Amazon. Companies like Apple, Amazon, and Meta suffer on the ad side because there is a growing supply of ad space, but there are not as many ad dollars, and companies have generally less to allocate to marketing on a proportional basis.

Finally, the podcast touched on supply chains. Tony believed that supply chains have generally recovered, partly due to the falling demand. However, there are still challenges, particularly with logistics and labor shortages. Companies are looking at how to reduce supply chain risks and increase resilience, including reshoring and nearshoring. Tony believed that the current supply chain challenges could last up to two years, and he recommended that companies should develop more robust supply chain strategies.

In summary, Tony Nash shared his insights into the state of the US economy, the tech industry, and supply chains during The Morning Run podcast. He believes that there is still demand in the US economy, with consumers willing to spend and companies able to raise prices. The tech industry is experiencing a divergence between old and new tech, with old tech companies doing better. The supply chains have recovered, but there are still challenges, particularly with logistics and labor shortages. Companies should develop more robust supply chain strategies to increase resilience and reduce supply chain risks.


This is a podcast from BFM 89.9, The Business Station.

BFM 89.9, 7:05 A.m. On Thursday, the 16 February you are listening to The Morning Run. I’m Shazana Mokhtar with Wong Shou Ning and Chong Tjen. Now, in half an hour, we’re going to move the proposal for Petronas to be publicly listed in order to pare down national debt. But we are going to kickstart the morning as we always do, and it looks like it’s going to be a glorious morning with a look at how global markets closed overnight.

So all key US markets ended in the green. The Dow was up 0.1%, S&P 500 up 0.3%, NASDAQ up 0.9%. In Asian markets, they were all in the red, except for our very own FBMKLCI. The Nikkei was down 0.4%. Hang eng down 1.4%. Shanghai Composite down 0.4%. The Straits Times Index down 1.1%. But the FBMKLCI, it was up by 0.3%.

So for some thoughts on what’s moving markets, we have on the line with us, Tony Nash, CEO of Complete Intelligence. Good morning, Tony. Now, US retail sales in January jumped at the most in two years, and home builder sentiment rose in February by the most since 2020. While US inflation rose by 0.5% in January. What do all these indicators tell us about the state of the US economy?


It says that there’s still demand. It says that consumers are still willing to spend and that people really aren’t slowing down. We’re seeing things like price over volume. Meaning as we see more companies report, their earnings reports, they’re able to raise prices pretty dramatically, say, eight to say 12%, generally with a volume decline of, say, one to 3%, meaning the number of sales. Okay, so these companies are choosing to raise their prices and have fewer sales, but it results in more revenue and faster growth. So consumers are willing to pay more. They’re just buying slightly less of things.


And Tony, taking all this into account, what do you think the Federal Reserve will likely do next?


Yeah, they’re going to continue to raise. I do think that Powell missed a trick in hiking 50 in the last meeting. I do think they probably should have kept the foot on the brake a little bit more as a transition from 75 to 25. But I think for 25, it’s kind of as far as the I can see right now, at least while the current pace of the economy holds up. So, you know, we’ll certainly see 25 for the next three meetings. The question is, how much beyond that will we see it?


And Tony, are you in the camp where I have seen more economists raising their forecast for US GDP growth? I see numbers jumping from 1% to 2% for the first quarter. Are you in that camp?


Our view has been 1.4 this year, so it really hasn’t changed.




We do reforecast each month.

CI Futures covers 50+ economies around the world. You can see historical data and forecasted data in an instant, like the US GDP here. Learn more about CI Futures:


All right. And then looking at some results right. Old tech, Cisco delivered really good numbers, beating street expectations with strong spending on tech infrastructure, suggesting that companies still have money for capex. Is this indicative that actually companies are doing better than we expected?


Well, I’m not sure it means companies are doing better because earnings generally are on a slowing trend. But I think what it means is that companies are having to build out more robust technology infrastructure for their existing operations. And that’s good for the tech infrastructure companies like Cisco. So we are at the emergence of a new tech cycle with generative AI, there’s a ChatGPT and so on. So companies are going to need more robust infrastructure to deal with that.


But then we also notice there’s a divergence right when it comes to results. So old tech like HP Enterprise and Cisco doing better versus new tech like you see results being soft from the likes of Apple, Amazon. Will this divergence continue?


Well, I think when you look at things like Apple, Amazon, Meta, these sorts of guys, part of their revenues are ad revenues. And what’s happening on the ad side is we have a growing, say, supply of ad space with different companies coming on, like Netflix offering ad models. So there’s more ad supply. There are not as many ad dollars out there, or even if you assume the same ad dollars. With inflation, people are having to make trade offs. Companies are having to make trade offs, so they have generally less to allocate to marketing on a proportional basis. But there’s more ad supply out there. So many of those tech companies where ads are a part of their revenue mix, they’re suffering on the ad side.


Turning our attention to supply chains. During the Pandemic, the world faced a series of supply chain stresses made worse by the Ukraine conflict and China’s sporadic lockdowns. Do you think that global supply chains have recovered? Are they functioning better now? Or do you still see some kind of rocky road ahead?


I’d say generally supply chains have recovered. Part of that is demand falling. So we had in the port of Long Beach, we had the volume declined by about 28% in January. So the volume of imports have have actually gone down year on year on the west coast of the US. So the demand there is slowing. We’ve seen one of the indicators is headcount cuts. Guys like Federal Express or FedEx and UPS are cutting headcount. FedEx has announced about a 10% workforce cut, which tells me those are usually the guys who see the supply chain issues first and the guys who see the slowdowns first as well. So if they’re cutting staff, it tells me that some of these things are really slowing down.

When we look at delays at Chinese port, for example, they’re about half the time of what they were about a year and a half ago. So they’re not really bad at all. And then when we look at, say, freight that’s waiting on ships that’s down dramatically to, say, Q1 of 2020 levels before all of the COVID stuff set in. There’s a great just for your listeners, keel. The Kiel, K-I-E-L, I think in Germany has a great indicators on supply chain delays. So I would recommend you guys to check that out.


And Tony, ASEAN is a key player in this global supply chain. Which countries in this region are likely to be major outperformers in that regard?


Well, you guys know Malaysia is seeing more inward investment, especially around electronics, so I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw some upside in Malaysia. I know the expectations for Malaysia aren’t as aggressive as, say, Indonesia or Vietnam, but it’s possible that Malaysia overperforms those expectations. Indonesia, I think there are a lot of expectations on indonesia’s outperformance partly on AG prices, but also partly on movement of some manufacturing to Indonesia, which has a pretty low base. And then Vietnam, of course, you know, we’ve seen blistering growth in Vietnam. We expect that to continue as people look for a substitute for Chinese supply chains.


And Tony, are you still a bull on energy stocks? Because if you look at the sector, it’s the worst performing in the S&P 500 today and also for the month so far. We see energy stocks all coming under pressure, I think in part due to all prices stagnating and weak earnings from some of these companies. Is it time to buy or is it time to just step back and say, hey, maybe I should cash in my chips?


Yeah, I think you have to look at the different segments of energy. So, for example, oilfield service providers, we’re starting to see upstream, meaning people who take oil and gas out of the ground starting to spend on development outside of the US. So some of these oil and gas services providers, it’s a very interesting space to look at right now because we haven’t had CapEx in so long in oil and gas. And as we get that, we could see some of these service providers do really well. In terms of oil price. I do think that we do see upward pressure. I don’t think anybody really expected that to hit in Q1, but as we end Q1 and go into Q2, we do start to see that. And I think we do see I don’t think we see two or $300 crude oil this year, but I think low 100s, 110s, high 90s. I think those are definitely within possibility and likelihood.


Tony, thanks very much for speaking with us today. That was Tony Nash, CEO of Complete Intelligence, giving us his take on some of the trends that he sees moving markets in the days and weeks ahead. Ending the conversation there with just a projection on how oil prices could be trending later on this year.

Yeah, so I think we’ll have to watch this space. But I want to focus on one of the names that I mentioned earlier on, which is Cisco. Right. So their results came out. In fact, it went up 8% after market hours trading because the street was really impressed with the numbers. Apparently the earnings, the last time we saw this kind of level earnings was in 2013, and that’s like a long time ago. So a lot of attention on Wall Street has been on what I call the new tech. So Amazon, meta, Apple, Microsoft, even on some level. But there’s a little bit of a shift. And I think what these names are showing is that, hey, there is still spending out there.

Yeah, I think the CEO actually said that the public sector business performed stronger than expected as compared to historically. While in the service provider category, some customers are adjusting to better delivery of the company’s products into the environment. In terms of the guidance for the next quarter, Cisco is guiding adjusted earnings of 96 to 98 cents to share and revenue of roughly about 14.25 to 14.5 billion dollars.

So currently the street doesn’t really like this name that much because there’s only 14 buys, 15 holds, and one sell. Consensus target price for the stock is $53.83. Like we say, it was already up 8% after market hours, right. I won’t be surprised. After these set of numbers, we will see quite a number of upgrades on this name because the company is already suggesting on giving guidance a more positive one.

That’s right. Their guidance is more positive for the next quarter. But turning our attention to other earnings report we have, the Canadian ecommerce platform Shopify. Shopify, in contrast to Cisco, didn’t have such a great report. They reported a loss of $623.7 million in the fourth quarter after adjusting for stock based compensation, gains on investments and other costs. The company reported earnings of 7 cents a share, down from adjusted earnings of 14 cents per share in the holiday quarter.

And revenue came in at about $1.73 billion, up from $1.38 billion. And the analysts on average expected an adjusted loss of a penny a share on sales of about $1.65 billion. The company said Black Friday sales rose close to 20% last year from 2021. And this year is working to recover from a misplaced bet that the Pandemic Field search in online shopping would become more permanent. Although he’s cut jobs, raised prices, and expanded offerings to merchants.

19 buys, 25 holes, five sells. Consensus target price for the stock, $46.48. Actually, the current share price is already above that, to $53.39 year to date. Actually, the stock is up 53%, but I think came from a very low base because 2022 was very painful for them.

All right, 07:17 A.m.. We’re going to take a quick break, but we’ll come back and cover more top stories in the newspapers and portals this morning. Stay tuned to BFM 89.9 you have.

Been listening to a podcast from BFM 89.9, the business station. For more stories of the same kind, download the BFM app.

News Articles

Startups Step Up with Free Resources and Virtual Technology

This post on free resources was originally produced by Oracle and first appeared on the Oracle for Startups Blog:


Startups are known to be adaptive, innovative, and agile. When there’s a crisis or disruption, these up-and-coming business are quick with a solution, and this situation is no different.


Despite being hit hard themselves, startups are stepping up to help by offering their virtual technologies and resources for free. Among them, we are proud to share, are several cloud startups from the Oracle for Startups community.


Here is a running list of some of the startups who are putting their ingenuity and inspiration into action.


Extending Help to Farmers and Growers




AgroScout’s software solution enables growers and farmers to turn a low-cost commercial drone into a digital agronomist, providing pinpoint detection of disease and pests, thereby protecting crops and increasing yield. During this economic crisis, AgroScout is offering its solution at discounted rates and including free use of a drone for 2 weeks in the case of growers who do not already own one, so the grower can try out the system without any cost.


“In these challenging times, we don’t want to ask farmers to put their hand into their pockets unless they are 100% positive it’s going to help them out,” said Simcha Shore, CEO of AgroScout.  “In addition to our discounted offerings, we are also providing online demonstrations so growers can be acquainted with the system and understand the benefits.”


The solution accurately and autonomously detects, identifies, and monitors diseases, pests, and other agronomic problems in the field. Data is uploaded to the cloud and analyzed by AgroScout’s deep learning algorithms with the goal of sending growers accurate crop stress statuses, disease, and pinpointed pest locations, accompanied by treatment recommendation, directly to their computer or mobile device.


You can take advantage of AgroScout’s current offers here or by emailing


Patient Triage Via Mobile App


Brazilian startup is focused on mobile emergency care through telemedicine and artificial intelligence solutions for ambulances, rescues, and healthcare units. The startup has developed a new and free service, TeleCOVID, which helps identify potential patients and calculates their severity into low- and high-risk profiles. Low risk profiles receive care instructions and best-practice procedures, as well as connections with medical professionals. In the case of high risk, the TeleCOVID will start the medical tele-orientation using the platform, which is HIPAA and HL7 compliant, to help better connect high-risk patients to immediate care. (No personally identifiable information is used during the process.)


“Telemedicine is critical right now and the ability to help triage via TeleCOVID is helping the general population and the many medical doctors and organizations we are working with,” said Jamil Cade, MD and CEO of  “We are helping medical professionals to tele-triage, tele-orientate, tele-monitor and use real-time data visualization to battle this pandemic.”


To access information on this free service, visit their website.


Real-time, Active Analytics Helping on the Front Lines




Kinetica is providing free access to its Active Analytics Platform for researchers, data scientists, and academics trying to analyze the impact of COVID-19. Kinetica helps organizations build real-time active analytical applications that react instantly to changing conditions. The platform leverages powerful GPUs to process and visualize complex streaming, historical, and location data at scale—layering on machine learning—to deliver real-time information for insight-driven actions and results.


“Our hearts go out to all those affected by the outbreak of COVID-19. I believe it is our duty to do all we can for the safety of our community,” said Kinetica CEO Paul Appleby. “Kinetica was founded on the idea that data can change the world. By providing our analytics platform for free we will help provide critical, real-time information to protect the most vulnerable, assist emergency responders, better care for the sick, and find a solution against this terrible virus.”


Use this form to provide a basic overview of your project, and access the platform free.


Throwing Studios and Artists a Lifeline




GridMarkets, a cloud rendering and simulation company for studios, animation/visual effects, and other industries, is providing its service at a significant discount (and in some cases, at no cost) to studios and freelance artists in need. GridMarkets’ “COVID-19 Relief Program” (powered by Oracle’s VMs) can help studios and freelance graphic artists in many ways, including:


•    Enabling studios to continue work so they can preserve their cash and business
•    Providing a lifeline to the artistic community
•    Bootstrapping a freelance business (if they have been laid off by their studios)
•    Helping professionals refresh their artistic “reels”
•    Creating helpful community VFX 3D tutorials


“Visual effects studios and freelance 3D artists, who produce the world’s visual content, are being crushed by COVID-19.  Demand is down and anyone fortunate enough to have a project is now, understandably, ultra-budget sensitive,” said cofounder Mark Ross.  “Our visual effects cloud-based rendering and simulation service, powered and secured by Oracle, can be up and running for a studio or freelancer in minutes with no special skills required.  We have cut our prices and made grants available as a way of giving back to the artistic community in their hour of need.”


Learn more about GridMarkets’ COVID-19 Relief Program on their webpage.


Helping Navigate Volatility in Markets and Supply Chains


Complete Intelligence


With economies around the would essentially being put on pause, there is a new level of uncertainty in markets and supply chains. As a result, manufacturers are quickly trying to pivot and make adjustments on the fly. Complete Intelligence is offering a free report and consultation call to help businesses adjust to volatility in markets and supply chains.


“We’ve seen a big shift in how category managers and planning managers are looking at their supply chains,” said Tony Nash, CEO and founder.  “With entire economies being shut down with coronavirus, companies are taking a closer look at the concentration of supply chains by region. Our AI/ML software helps companies easily visualize their supply chains, and helps them pivot quickly.”


With Complete Intelligence, businesses can easily visualize their cost data, make predictions and plans, all in the context of a global economy. The company uses more than 15 billion data points in their AI/ML tool, so planning teams can see their cost projections in the context of market influences.


Contact Tony Nash at for more information.


Keep your storytelling fresh – even while working from home




Video is paramount to brand storytelling, but creating great, engaging content when you can’t send out video crews or get face-to-face is a problem.


Sauce’s platform allows businesses to keep engaging with their audience, by transforming every organization’s community into a video creation team. The London-based startup enables video creation leveraging smartphone cameras, so anyone can become part of the film crew. The result is authentic user-generated content.


With features for editing, subtitling, and music – the platform is collaborative, fast, and robust.


“We’ve received an uptick in organizations needing advice and direction around video creation,” said Sauce cofounder Priya Shah. “We want to meet their needs with advice and technology resources so they can keep their video content and storytelling fresh and constant—even while we are all working from home.”


Contact Priya at for advice on capturing great video, even when your whole team is at home.


Chatbots triage customer service calls




BotSupply is a conversational AI company that helps organizations create engaging and relevant customer experiences using their bot platform. Today, the cutting-edge startup is providing its AI platform for free to public and non-profit healthcare organizations so they can do what they do best: save lives.


Triage and response teams across industries are being overloaded with customer calls. As call volume increases, so do wait times. Chatbots help these organizations provide information in a timely manner, automating the most repetitive queries and routing only the most critical ones to human agents.


“The beauty of chatbots is that they are so flexible and easy to implement that you can respond to any crisis in a matter of hours, not weeks. This is something other communication tools simply can’t do,” said BotSupply cofounder Francesco Stasi. “We are happy to offer these resources free while many are in need.”


To get started, contact Francesco at


Mapping services for governments, healthcare, startups




TravelTime’s platform processes maps and data from across the globe and delivers optimized travel time mapping, so you know what’s reachable in minutes, not miles.


Today, TravelTime is offering its data and mapping services to governments, charities, health services, and NGOs for free. The startup is also covering mapping and data costs for other startups and small businesses.


“Although the current situation is disrupting our personal lives, our technology remains as solid and stable as always and so it is business as (un)usual for us,” said TravelTime cofounder Charlie Davies. “There is no time limit on this, there is no contract, there is no assumption for future use. We want to repurpose our data and services to help. Lots of people have helped us along our way, now it’s our turn to try and do the same for others.”


Any government, charity, health service, or NGO that is actively helping to address the crisis can get unlimited free access to data to help them plan their responses, including:


•          Arranging visits to vulnerable patients

•          Mapping the right locations for testing centers

•          Communicating to the public which test centers are right for them


Small businesses and startups can also take advantage of these services. Access the request form here.


With virtual-AI platform, HR recruiting keeps pace




Brazilian-based Jobecam is offering free access to its virtual recruitment platform so human resource teams can continue recruiting. Jobecam is a 100% digital recruiting experience that brings agility, accessibility, and diversity through AI-driven video technology. A pioneer in video blind interviews, Jobecam’s solution improves the recruiting experience and makes it virtual in a time when face-to-face meetings aren’t possible.


“In this moment of uncertainty and social isolation, we all need to come together and help,” said Jobecam COO Thereza Bukow.  “By making our solution free, we enable businesses to be more agile in their recruitment process and deliver a better experience that is secure and modern.”


Jobecam’s solution offers:

•          Registration of unlimited job posts

•          Automatic screening of candidates

•          Recorded video interviews

•          AI-based intelligent rankings

•          Live interview room, cultural matching, and video curriculum


Contact Jobecam by emailing or


Real-time employee feedback that’s simple and meaningful


Holler Live


Dutch startup Holler Live is offering their real-time feedback solution free to human resource managers, so employees can provide their opinions and feedback on various topics, including how they are adapting during this time.


“Employees across the world are working from home—many for the first time. Holler provides an easy way for employees to voice their opinions and feedback—allowing human resource managers to better understand how staff are handling the changes and challenges of remote working during this difficult time,” said CEO Rado Raykov.


With one swipe, Holler Live allows people to express their opinion in an easy and universally understandable way. Holler Live partners get specific and user-permissioned alerts, permitting them to promptly respond in real-time to the opinions of their target audience, whether it’s employees, customers, or other stakeholders.


To access Holler Live’s free solution, please email or sign up here.  Watch a video of the mobile employee engagement solution.


Keeping media rolling with AI-powered content tools




German startup aiconix is offering its multilingual transcription and subtitling solutions for free and discounted rates. An AI-powered media and content creation platform, the technology enables media and entertainment professionals to produce better content more efficiently by automating routine workflows and creating new content from large amounts of unstructured audio-visual data.


“In these days, where everybody communicates online, it should be essential to reach also those who need barrier-free access, and provide searchability in audio and video files,” said CEO and cofounder Eugen L. Gross.  “We want to provide our live transcription and live subtitling feature for free for the next three months to those who need it like hospitals, authorities and NGOs.”


From press conferences to media content, aiconix’s transcription and subtitle services can plug into any data stream in multiple languages allowing organizations to quickly repurpose and disseminate valuable content. The platform enables automated subtitling of videos, semantic text analysis, transcription of audio, automated recognition of faces and local celebrities, label detection, and much more.


Contact aiconix to access your discount and get started: or contact form.


Startups are also reducing operating costs by taking advantage of free and discounted cloud with Oracle for Startups. Learn more and join them at


Has COVID-19 Exposed Over-Dependence on Chinese Manufacturing?

The Business Station Malaysia spoke to Tony about his insights from the Federal Reserve’s minutes released yesterday as well as his thoughts on Chinese manufacturing as activity slowly ramps up again. How long will it take for global supply chains to return to a sense of normalcy?


Beyond that, this podcast also get into Germany’s economy as weak economic data dragged down the Euro, and thoughts on whether we’ll see Asian Central Banks cut rates due to the Covid-19.


Listen to the podcast in BFM: The Business Station 89.9.