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‘Christmas Quiz 2013’

With England given a tough draw for the Football World Cup and the Ashes series in Australia not going to plan, we felt a light-hearted Christmas quiz would be just the tonic to lighten the mood (the answers can be found at the end). The team at Argonaut wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

The questions…

1. According to forecasts, world GDP growth is expected to be 3.4% in 2014. This represents an increase of 0.9% from 2013’s expected 2.5% growth rate. However, at 4.1%, the country with the highest expected increase in its GDP growth rate for 2014 is?

  1. Mexico
  2. China
  3. USA
  4. Greece

2. The gold price began 2013 at $1,675/oz and is currently trading around $1,240/oz, a fall of 26%. In 1968 gold became freely tradeable (after being previously pegged at $35/oz). If gold is a perfect hedge against inflation and assuming it was fairly priced in 1968, what would be the fair price of gold today (using the US CPI index as our inflation measure since 1968)?

  1. $1,230/oz
  2. $2,000/oz
  3. $850/oz
  4. $240/oz

3. Silver is the biggest single cost in manufacturing for Danish jewellery company Pandora. Last year what proportion of revenues were eaten up by the cost of silver?

  1. 5%
  2. 12%
  3. 21%

4. The UK housing market and specifically the government’s new Help to Buy scheme has been a major story this year, and it seems commonly agreed that an acceleration in housing supply is needed. However this may prove difficult in the near term as UK brick manufacturing capacity since 1999 has declined by what percentage?

  1. 28%
  2. 35%
  3. 52%

5. The channel tunnel which is operated by Eurotunnel has the longest undersea portion of any tunnel in the world. However the world’s longest rail tunnel also goes under the sea. Can you name it and the country it is in?

  1. Seikan Tunnel, Japan
  2. Laerdal Tunnel, Norway
  3. Wushaoling Tunnel, China
  4. Ward Tunnel, USA

6. The top 100 private landowners in the USA own more than 30 million acres of land - an area approximately the size of England. Of these people, the largest landowner controls 2.2 million acres. Can you name him and the European company he controls?

7. Sugar Puffs are a favourite breakfast cereal made by Finnish conglomerate Raisio.  Can you guess where they are all manufactured?

  1. Wichita, Kansas,  USA
  2. Metz, Lorriane,  France
  3. Southall, London , UK
  4. Oulu, Finland

8. Which of the following is not a product made by Finnish conglomerate Raisio?

  1. Low flatulence bovine feed
  2. XXX mints
  3. Cholesterol lowering yoghurts and spreads
  4. High flatulence herring -derived stimulants

9. Of the fifty largest pipeline drugs globally being modelled by consensus estimates, just five are expected to be blockbuster drugs (sales greater than $1 bln) by the end of 2016. Of these, only one (Anoro) will be produced by a European company. Can you name the company?

  1. Bayer
  2. Novo Nordisk
  3. GlaxoSmithKline
  4. Sanofi

10. Since 2008 Greek unemployment has increased from 9% to 27%, but how much have wages declined for those remaining in employment?

  1. 24%
  2. 16%
  3. 3%

11. Remy Cointreau produces and supplies high valued spirits globally. Their most important market is China which accounts for approximately 35% of group EBIT. Here the cognac business is slowing significantly, due in part to the government’s clampdown on “conspicuous consumption” or “anti-extravagance” measures. In China a third of their sales are generated by their LouisXIII cognac brand. Can you guess the average price per bottle in Euros of their LouisXIII brand sold in China?

  1. €850
  2. €1,600
  3. €670
  4. €3,100

12. Norwegian Air Shuttle is Europe’s third largest short haul airline, with a market cap of $1.1bln and operating a fleet of 84 planes . There remain approximately 27 planes still to be delivered from an order the company placed in 2007 worth an estimated $1.2bln. However, last year the company placed one of the largest European aviation orders in history. Can you guess how many planes were ordered and what percentage of their current market cap the estimated value of this order represents?

  1. 153 planes and 618%
  2. 84 planes and 364%
  3. 222 planes and 973%

Greg Bennett
Fund Manager
Argonaut Capital Partners 


  1. Greece (source: UBS)
  2. $240/oz (source: Argonaut)
  3. 21% (source: Argonaut)
  4. 52% (source: UK Government Dept for Business, Innovation & Skills)
  5. Seikan Tunnel, Japan (source: Wikipedia)
  6. John Malone, Liberty Global Plc
  7. Southall, London, UK (source: Wikipedia)
  8. High flatulence herring-derived stimulants (source: Raisio Group)
  9. GlaxoSmithKline (source: DrugAnalyst)
  10. 24% (source: Eurostat)
  11. €1,600 (source: UBS)
  12. 22 planes and 973% (source: Argonaut)