1) The tech giants Apple, Google, Facebook and Amazon are facing antitrust troubles. The government is stepping up scrutiny of these big four with possible new rules, regulations and law suits. The investigative efforts will be split between the Justice Department and Federal Trade Commission driven by mounting criticism over political bias, disinformation and privacy breaches. This could spell years of troubles and law suits and possible breakup of the companies.
2) The threat of tariffs on Mexican imports has American oil refiners worried, since Mexico is the number two source of foreign oil to the United States. American produced oil is a light oil which is a poor match for Gulf Coast refining facilities, while the Mexican oil is a heavy oil that when blended with the America optimizes the refinery’s output.
3) The Medicaid system is still suffering from the Great recession, so there are fears than another recession could be devastating for the system. This is at a time when state spending on Medicaid is still high with no signs of subsiding. In a recession, payrolls decrease from people unemployed or underemployed, so contributions are down. This means less buildup of reserve funds needed for the future, and a second recession so soon, could seriously deplete those reserves quicker, leaving the future of the system in doubt.
4) Stock market closings for 4 June 2019: Jump in Dow comes from Fed signals flexibility on rates.
Dow 25,332.18 up 512.40 Nasdaq 7,527.12 up 194.10 S&P 500 2,803.27 up 58.82
1) China has countered U.S. tariffs imposed last Friday with tariffs on $60 billion dollars of U.S. imports to China. About 10 to 15% of America’s import revenues come from China, and while the trade war is high stakes and risky, it’s the only real tool America has to deal with China, because China ignores the world trade organization rulings.
2) Fears are increasing that China may not buy as many U.S. treasury notes as she has in the past, which would force America to increase the prime interest rate. There are even fears that China might not buy any bonds at all, or even start selling off bonds she now holds in retaliation for the tariffs. It’s reported that China is also buying up gold.
3) Boeing aircraft is fearful of being a target for tariff reprisals, who holds substantial orders from China. Apple, who gets 20% of its revenues from China, and Caterpillar are also facing business downturns if China places tariffs on imports of their products.
1) British parliament voted to take control of Brexit for one day this Wednesday, to try their hand at resolving Britain’s dilemma of departing the European Union. If the division running through the British public is any indicator, then it’s rather unlikely parliament will reach any consensus on a solution.
2) Airbus of France announced a $35 billion dollar sale to China for 290 of their A320 airliners plus another 10 of their A350 wide body airliners. This is another blow to Boeing in addition to the grounding of their best seller, the 737 MAX 8, which is comparable to the A320. The grounding of the 737 MAX 8 coupled with the fallout from the US-China’s trade war is a serious impediment to Boeing. China is the world’s largest aviation market.
3) Apple sales in China has declined due to demand for domestic products. Apple products have become too expensive, so the Chinese people are turning to domestic products which now have most of the same features as Apple for much less.
4) 26 MAR 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 25,657.73 up 140.90 Nasdaq 7,691.52 up 53.98 S&P 500 2,818.46 up 20.10
1) Apple announced they are laying off 190 people from their self driving car division. These includes forty hardware engineers, twelve software engineers and one machine shop technician. Speculation is that Apple is pulling out of the self driving car competition. They hadn’t actually built a working self driving car, rather they have reportedly concentrated on the sensors and software organic to such systems, which means they are behind the other developers.
2) The Brexit problem for Britain deepens as considerations are being made for Britain to extend the time when it’s exits from the European Union. No time for extensions has been agreed upon yet, although the Prime Minister has stated than it cannot be more than a few weeks. This is another example of the British’s concerns for the difficulties that face Britain’s exit.
3) Twenty-first Century Fox studios has been ordered to pay actors of the hit show “Bones”, $179 million dollars in punitive damages, which it withheld from profits promised to the actors.
4) 28 FEB 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 25,916.00 down 69.16 Nasdaq 7,532.53 down 21.98 S&P 500 2,784.49 down 7.89
1) Apple’s Apple Tech development system is being used to breach iPhones, giving hackers access to user data. But users who buy their apps from the Apple store do not have to worry.
2) Airbus is taking it’s A380 super jumbo airliner out of production as airlines turn away from the jumbo jets to concentrate on the smaller jet liners for service. The A380 is a double decker 544 passenger aircraft designed to challenge the Boeing 747, its first flight was in 2005 while the 747 first flew in 1967, however A380 never took hold because airlines preferred the smaller two engine aircraft.
3) Amazon announce it is canceling its plans to build its headquarters in New York, amidst quickly rising opposition by the people in Queens and local politicians opposed to the $2.8 billion dollar tax incentives to Amazon. This means the loss of potentially 25,000 new jobs for the New York area. Also, Amazon announced they will not reopen their search for a city, rather they will concentrate on their second headquarters in Virginia.
4) 14 FEB 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 25,439.39 down 103.88 Nasdaq 7,426.96 up 6.58 S&P 500 2,745.73 down 7.30
1) Tech stocks dropped 5%, the worst drop in seven years. This prompted warnings to expect another 5% drop.
2) Apple is pulling the stock markets down because of it’s drop in sales, in particular I-phones sales in China. Slow sales are blamed on high prices for Apple phones coupled with China’s declining economy.
3) Recent survey finds that 51% of American young people favor socialism, a growing number as more young people are pushed out of the economic system unable to make substantive contributions to society.
4) 3 JAN 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 22,686.22 down 660.02 Nasdaq 6,463.50 down 202.43 S&P 500 2,447.89 down 62.14
Sirius XM will be making a big acquisition in purchasing Pandora for a reported $3.5 billion dollars.
The deal seems to make sense since the growing competition in streaming services, such as Tidal, Apple Music, Spotify, and now YouTube Music, which are all culminating new listeners and subscribership.
Sirius XM has a subscriber base of approx. 36 million and Pandora has a listener base of approx. 70 million and of those 70 million, 6 million are paid premium subscribers.
The buyout of Pandora will make Sirius XM the largest audio service network globally. -SB
Uber has hired two top female executives because of the arising sexual harassment claims that has hit the expanding technology company.
Bozoma St. John and Frances Frei have been hired to try to bring a more productive and diverse female workforce to the giant tech company. Bozoma a former marketing and brand executive at Apple Music, will oversee marketing and branding at Uber as Chief Branding Officer; while Frei who was previously senior associate dean and professor of executive education at Harvard, will be Uber’s Senior Vice President of Strategy.
Both women bring a plethora of experience and knowledge to their respective positions, and Uber utilizing both individuals helps the company with a formal image problem that has been tainting the company with their female workforce. The hires allows Uber to mitigate and develop a consensus of opportunities for their women demographic at the workplace. A demographic that Uber has been battling for quite some time now. -SB
Google seems to beating Apple, as far as market share is concerned in the cellular mobile phone industry. Google Android in the 3rd quarter; controlled over 85% of the mobile phone market share world wide. Apple’s position decline significantly according to Strategy Analytics.
The 3rd quarter showed Apple Iphone faltering compared to the record reached by the Google Android. Google’s Android reached newer heights in the 3rd quarter; beating past quarters with capturing the market share of new Android buyers. -SB