In the wake of sobering news from the Caribbean, Hurricane Matthew leaves its devastating footprint on Florida. The token news relief may be that the storm is only a Category 4 hurricane, with winds expected to reach 210-to-220 kilometers per hour. Most of Florida has been brought to a complete standstill. It seldom gets worse. Only three Category 5 hurricanes have hit Florida over the past century: Hurricane Andrew in 1992, Hurricane Camille in 1969, and the still-unbelievable Labor Day Hurricane in 1935. What should investors in US stocks expect? Home-improvement companies could be winners, while insurers will likely be losers. Based on the mid-week queue at the petrol station near our office, firms with business exposure to retail gas operations in Florida may see an unexpected bounce in revenue. ■
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