- Morgan Korn at Daily Ticker1 hr ago
Ukraine, Russia, China: U.S. markets continued to lose ground Friday after plunging sharply Thursday as investors turned their attention again to the crisis in Crimea and weak economic data from China. The Dow Jones Industial Average (^DJI) posted its biggest decline in six weeks Thursday and is off nearly 3% since Jan. 1. The S&P 500 Index (^GSPC) erased all of its gains yesterday and the Nasdaq (^IXIC) is the only U.S. market in possitive territory on a year-to-date basis.
Citizens living in Ukraine's Crimea region will vote on a referendum this weekend to secede from Ukraine, an event that could roil gobal markets. But James Altucher, investor, author and entrepreneur, says what happens in Ukraine has no impact on U.S. growth and the everyday activities of Fortune 500 companies.
- Nicole Goodkind at Daily Ticker3 hrs ago
Cloud computing just got a lot more accessible. Google Drive announced Thursday it was lowering the price of its cloud storage service, incentivizing those who were happy to use only the free 15GB of storage to pay for more.
Google will now charge $1.99 per month for 100GB of storage down from $4.99, and $9.99 per month for 1TB versus $49.99.
The storage Google (GOOG) provides is actually shared between Gmail, Drive and Google+. Those who are already paying will be automatically placed into the new payment plan.
Related: Get ready to work in the cloud
This means that Google provides more storage than any of its competitors, and at a cheaper rate too. This might pose a problem for the valuations of popular cloud storage companies Dropbox and Box, both of which were planning on going public later this year.
The Daily Ticker’s Henry Blodget isn’t too concerned about the impact of Google's price cut on these two cloud companies.
“I’m not sure this actually hits Dropbox and Box too much…lots of people are already on Dropbox and Box and switching is a pain," he says.
- Morgan Korn at Daily Ticker1 day ago
Filing one's income taxes has never been an enjoyable experience. Yet taxpayers have even more to worry about these days than digging out old receipts and remembering where they stashed W2 forms. Cyber criminals have become more sophisticated in their online attacks and millions of Americans unknowingly fall victim to these tax scams every year. Nearly 1.6 million taxpayers were deceived in the first half of 2013 -- a tenfold increase from 2010, according to cybersecurity expert Patrick Peterson. These scams are emails that are often "too good to be true" says Peterson and are sent from email aliases that look like official government agencies like the IRS.
"The IRS won't reach out to you over email," says Peterson, who is also the CEO of data security firm Agari. "If you see something suspicious call the IRS."
- Lauren Lyster at Daily Ticker1 day ago
They're baaaack. Banker bonuses on Wall Street last year clocked in at the highest level since before the 2008 financial crisis, with the average New York finance employee's bonus growing 15% in 2013 to $164,000, according to the New York State Comptroller.
That's all fine and well, except that according to Bloomberg News editor Bob Ivry, the shenanigans of the biggest banks since the financial crisis have been astonishing. Detailing them is the premise of Ivry's new book The Seven Sins of Wall Street: Big Banks, Their Washington Lackeys, and the Next Financial Crisis.
- Nicole Goodkind at Daily Ticker1 day ago
In his State of the Union speech, President Barack Obama said he was prepared to go around Congress if lawmakers stymied important legislation. Today he is making good on that threat—the president is expected to order a rule that would require more employers to pay overtime to salaried workers.
Currently, employers aren’t required to pay overtime to salaried workers earning over $455 a week or $24,000 a year. While it is unclear by how much the Labor Department will raise the salary limit, former White House economist Jared Bernstein has proposed an increase to $984 a week or about $50,000 a year. That means this rule would impact between five and 10 million people.
- Daily Ticker1 day ago
Major stock market indexes haven't moved much so far this year as we approach the end of the first quarter. The Dow (^DJI)is down a little more than 1% and the S&P 500 (^GSPC)is up about that same percentage. The S&P hit another record high last week but it's relatively sluggish performance year-to-date has prompted talk that this market has topped out.
"Every time you’re in a higher trading range you’re going to make a series of highs and pull back from each of them," says Barry Ritholtz, chairman and chief executive officer of Ritholtz Wealth Management. “But each pullback isn’t the beginning of the end.”
Ritholtz subscribes to Lowry's Research's four factorsto help identify market tops:
- Daily Ticker1 day ago
Shares of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were down sharply for a second straight day after Senate Banking Committee members Tim Johnson (D-SD) and Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) outlined plans to wind down the mortgage giants. In a nutshell, the plan would replace Fannie and Freddie with an FDIC-like regulator to oversee the mortgage-backed securities market while requiring private investors (vs. taxpayers) to take the first 10% of any loss before any government backstop kicks in. Of course, this is just the outline of the plan and there are major political obstacles to getting anything done in Congress, much less on such a contentious issue as the government's role in the housing market. Most political observers do not believe the proposal will make it through Congress -- or avoid President Obama's veto pen if it did survive the legislative gauntlet. "We think there are several obstacles blocking the Johnson-Crapo bill in the Senate," writes Brian Gardner, SVP of Washington Research at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods:
- Daily Ticker2 days ago
An 18-year-old New Jersey high school student sued her parents for throwing her out of their home and refusing to pay for her private high school or college.
Rachel Canning, who has since moved back home according to her parents' lawyer, asked the court to require her parents to pay the remainder of her high school tuition, living expenses, legal expenses and at least some of her college tuition from a designated college fund.
Related: How students can ace the SAT
A New Jersey Supreme Court judge dismissed her case for private school tuition and living expenses but left the possibility of college payments open. According to her parents' lawyer, Canning and her parents will now attempt to reconcile and settle the issue of college tuition out of court, and that Rachel's return home "is not contingent on any financial and/or other considerations."
- Daily Ticker2 days ago
Another winter storm is pushing across the Midwest and Northeast, now through Thursday.
As the impact of an unseasonably cold winter on the economy continues to be debated, one thing is for sure: It's been tough for travelers. More than 74,825 U.S. flights have been canceled from Dec. 21 to the beginning of March, according to FlightAware.com.
Reuters' Money Editor Lauren Youngwas recently stranded at the airport when her flight to LA was canceled. She decided to seek out some expert tips on what to do in this situation. Here's what she told us:
- Daily Ticker2 days ago
Fifteen years ago, Napster devastated the music business by making song stealing easy. Is it Hollywood’s turn now?
The new free app Popcorn Time looks a lot like a Napster for movies, or maybe Netflix (NFLX). The open-source software runs on almost any computer -- Windows, Mac or Linux -- and acts as an easy-to-use front end to the vast stash of pirated movies and TV shows sloshing around on the Internet.
The pirated videos, often uploaded from copies given out by Hollywood studios, end up online via BitTorrent, a huge but somewhat disorganized network of people sharing files on the Internet. It wasn’t easy to find any particular title until an unknown group of programmers, who say only that they live in Buenos Aires, created Popcorn Time.
There was plenty of stolen music on the Internet before Napster but it was hard to find. It’s the same with movies today. The most pirated titles include all the major hits but finding those movies and then downloading them is a complex process. And sometimes a 20-minute download ends up with a corrupted or poor quality file.