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Honda and LG Energy shares up on plans for $4.4bn EV battery plant

In today’s headlines, Honda and LG Energy announce a plan to build a joint EV battery plant, the Global X Uranium ETF rallies amid improving sentiment for nuclear power and a strategist says why he’s most bullish on Apple ahead of September. Meanwhile, consumer discretionary stocks are some of the best performing in Q3 and robust charging infrastructure is seen as key to the future of EVs.

Honda and LG Energy’s EV battery venture

Honda [HMC] and LG Energy [373220.KS] are joining forces to build a $4.4bn EV battery plant in the US. Mass production of lithium-ion batteries will begin by the end of 2025. Honda has set an ambitious target of building 800,000 EVs in North America by 2030. As of April this year, it had only sold 32,649 BEVs to date, 14,324 in 2021, according to industry publications.

Strategist forecasts Apple revenue growth

September is historically a month during which stocks underperform, but King Lip, chief strategist at BakerAvenue Wealth Management, forecasts that the market won’t break June’s lows. He is most bullish on Apple [AAPL], with the launch of iPhone 14 on 7 September being a catalyst. The stock is also likely to benefit once pressures on consumer spending start to ease, Lip told CNBC.

Consumer discretionary rally

Despite inflationary pressures on consumer’s wallets, consumer discretionary is one of the best performing sectors in the third quarter, beating the S&P 500 and only trailing the energy sector. CNBC Pro screened FactSet to identify the consumer discretionary winners. The three top performers up until 29 August had been meme stock Bed, Bath and Beyond [BBBY], followed by General Motors [GM] and Amazon [AMZN].

Uranium ETF soars on Musk tweet

Uranium stocks popped on Monday, leading the Global X Uranium ETF [URA] to close more than 7% higher, closing at its highest level since June. Uranium has been in sharper focus due to the energy crisis accelerating the need for energy independence and security. Investors may also have been encouraged to buy into the theme following a tweet from Elon Musk in which he called for countries to up their nuclear power generation.

The future of EV charging

The long-term success and rollout of electric vehicles is going to depend on the charging infrastructure that countries have in place to meet demand. A MarketWatch report has explored what the future of EV charging infrastructure might look like. Portable chargers built by Lightning eMotors [ZEV] will play a key role in rural and remote areas, while Tesla [TSLA] is expected to open up its charging stations to other automakers.

Earnings preview: WHSmith

Over the past three months, WHSmith’s stock has dropped nearly 14% as the cost of living crisis slows demand for the company’s products. This is expected to affect its full-year results, which are due to be announced tomorrow. As part of the company’s cost reduction strategy, the retailer is targeting savings of £41m which it is aiming to deliver through rent reductions and by reviewing leases that come up for renewal.

Is Ceres Power undervalued?

Shares in the clean energy company have fallen more than 44% in the past year, however, are up more than 400% in the past five years. Despite failing to make a profit, Ceres Power is managing to grow revenue at an impressive average of 30.97% per year, according to the Financial Times. Broker Berenberg’s price target of 1,560p is more than double the company’s current valuation.

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