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Illustration: Aida Amer
Axios' Courtenay Brown writes: From Oscar Mayer and Campbell's to Clairol and CoverGirl, some of America's most famous supermarket and drug store brands are losing market share as consumers' tastes and shopping habits change.
Why it matters: The challenges facing well-loved brands reflect shifts that aren't likely to swing back in their favor. As older companies scramble to keep up with upstart competitors, they are introducing more modern product lines, like ones with plant-based ingredients.
Driving the news: Legacy brands are concentrated within a handful of huge corporations that are losing money on various business lines as their products fade in relevance and popularity.
These companies' "standard prescriptions for defending" their brands "no longer seem to be yielding results," Carol Phillips, founder the Brand Amplitude consulting firm — which counted Campbell's Soup as a client — tells Axios.
What's happening: Consumers are piling into nouveau and generic brands — like Kylie Jenner's Kylie Cosmetics and Brandless — some of which aren't even sold in physical stores.
Between the lines: The companies that once used to set the trends are now the followers. Desperate to remain relevant, old-line companies — already late — often jump into the fad of the moment.
These strategies are "a total crapshoot," says Robert Passikoff, founder of the consultancy Brand Keys.
Investors pulled more than $25 billion out of U.S. equity funds in the week ending July 2, right as the stocks were hitting all-time highs, data shows.
It was the second highest level of fund redemptions for domestic stocks since the Investment Company Institute began tracking data in January 2013. ICI's data mainly tracks retail investors who have close to $10 trillion invested in domestic mutual funds and ETFs.
Why it matters: Last week's selloff shows that even when the stock market is rising — the S&P is up nearly 19% so far in 2019 — retail investors are moving out of stocks, showing the opposite behavior of what they've demonstrated during market booms of the past.
Yes, but: "While this outflow may seem [sizable] in simple dollar terms, it's important to realize it represents only .01 percent of the $9.6 trillion invested in domestic equity mutual funds and ETFs as of May 2019," Shelly Antoniewicz, ICI's senior director of industry and financial analysis tells Axios by email.
Hedge funds delivered their first-half best performance in a decade, rising more than 7% overall, according to data from eVestment. The industry also saw gains in June after a downturn in May when investors sold losing funds and bought winners.
Between the lines: Hedge fund divergence continued with long/short, equity, and event-driven funds delivering the best returns so far this year, while FX, commodity and fixed-income funds barely had positive returns.
Yes, but: The strong year-to-date performance still lagged the S&P 500 by more than 10%, and hedge funds were outgained by 4% by what eVestment described as a "global balanced benchmark" of 50% global stocks and 50% global bonds.
Shares of Cigna, UnitedHealth Group and CVS jumped on Thursday after the Trump administration said it would drop a plan to eliminate the rebates that drugmakers pay to benefit managers working with Medicare and Medicaid, Axios' Bob Herman writes.
Where it stands:
Between the lines: The rebate rule raised fears that drugmakers would engage in "tacit collusion," as Northwestern University health economist Craig Garthwaite recently wrote.
Yes, but: PBMs have already faced new state regulations and still could run up against seismic changes at the federal level.
Thanks to passage of the most recent U.S. farm bill legalizing hemp, cannabidiol — or CBD — is being sold widely throughout the country.
Why it matters: Mainstream acceptance is expected to bring explosive growth, with analysts from Brightfield Group estimating the U.S. CBD market will grow 706% from its 2018 levels by the end of the year, and reach nearly $24 billion by 2023.
Why you'll hear about this again: "Over the short-to medium-term, we expect expansion across both pharma and grocery as well as the emergence of supercenters, gyms, pet stores, natural food chains, and other big box retailers," Brightfield said in a recent publication.