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The Bot Brief

POSTED 06/04/2023

"There is no force on earth more powerful than an idea whose time has come."     

- Victor Hugo


Bots in The News:Bot Index vs. S & P 300

A couple of ‘bounce-back’ companies, an impending merger, legislative approval potential and raised guidance helped the Bot Index to jump 3.88%, far ahead of the 1.83% increase achieved by the S & P 500. The general markets enjoyed relief from the uncertainty of the budget negotiations and, on Friday harkened the U.S. labor report.

The one of the best performances from the Bot Index’s components came in the form of 3D Systems. While the 3D printing industry has been in the doldrums, this week several reports were circulated that claimed 3D Systems was interested in taking a position in or a complete merger with Stratasys Corp. The combination of the two rivals would result in a $2 billion company that would open new doors of research and development, clientele, and pricing power. Evidently, shareholders were excited about the prospect of the combination and bid up shares of both companies, with 3D Systems gaining 16.14% for the week.

iRobot Corp. rose 19.20% as anticipations regarding a final decision by the EU on the proposed merger of the company into Amazon became more apparent. It is expected that the EU antitrust regulators would make their decision by July 15.

Rockwell Automation, who has raised guidance twice during the year, made another announcement regarding the numbers for the period. This week the stock bounced 9.07% as management boosted both sales and EPS numbers from 9%-13% growth to 13%-17% for its fiscal year.

Two companies within the index experienced ‘bounce-back’ recoveries from previous weaknesses. Faro Corp. increased another 4.29% following the stocks nearly cut in half after reporting poor earnings in May. Also, AeroVironment recovered from its 23.55% decline in the prior week when it was announced that it would not be a competitor in the Army’s Future Tactical Uncrewed Aircraft System contract bid. The stock increased 7% in trading this week.

Oceaneering International increased 6.13% as oil prices moved from the $68 range to above $71.

Tesla rounded out the major gainers for the week with a 10.76% increase. The company announced a deal with Ford which would allow Ford’s EV’s to be able to access Tesla’s charging stations. While that may not sound like a big deal, according to Consumer Reports, “that to enable non-Tesla EVs to use the Superchargers, Tesla developed an adapter known as the "Magic Dock." The publication added that "to qualify for a slice of the $7.5 billion earmarked for EV charging network expansion in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, [Tesla] says it will open up 7,500 chargers from its Supercharger and Destination Charger network to non-Tesla vehicles by the end of 2024." Clearly Mr. Musk has found yet another way to broaden his empires which allowed him to regain status as the world’s richest human.

Tesla’s rival in the EV space, NIO Corp. was the only down stock in the Bot Index for the week. The company declined 1.82% consistent with an overall retreat by Chinese stocks. In fact, the NASDAQ’s Golden Dragon Index of U.S. traded Chinese companies fell to a new 2023 low.


  2020's Decade of Bot Index Performance

Where’s Nemo?

The Bot Brief has committed considerable focus on the ability of robotics in the exploration and exploitation of both underseas and outer space environments. In a recent BBC news feature, they report that in the Clarion-Clipperton Zone of the Pacific Ocean, there have been discoveries of 5,000 new species of animal life. Clearly, these scientific findings would not have occurred had it not been for the utilization of automated devices specifically built to endure the pressures of such deep-water exploration. The discoveries within the trenches in the oceans of the world open whole new avenues of understanding our natural world and how we can gain by the observation of these new bio-creations.








Member: American Economic Association, Society of Professional Journalists, United States Press Association. Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts, Robotic Industries Association (now A3 Automation), Member IEEE.


The Bot Brief is a weekly newsletter designed for economists, investment specialists, journalists, and academicians. It receives no remuneration from any companies that may from time to time be featured in the brief and its commentaries, analysis, opinions, and research represent the subjective view of Balcones Investment Research, LLC. Due to the complex and rapidly changing nature of the subject matter, the company makes no assurances as to the absolute accuracy of the material presented.