|Day's Range||1.4500 - 1.4500|
One in five users say they had their privacy violated on social media, according to an exclusive new Verizon Media survey.
(Bloomberg) -- The message to Adam Neumann was clear: You’re not Zuckerberg.Over the past month, as Neumann’s grandiose plans for We Co. started to fray, bankers began warning that he would have to loosen his iron grip on the company.The old era of Mark Zuckerburg was over, WeWork executives would soon learn. Back in 2012, Zuckerberg could take Facebook Inc. public and still retain extraordinary voting power. But that was then.And so it was that Neumann, the polarizing co-founder of WeWork, begrudgingly agreed this week to cede some of his powers. The question now: Will that be enough? Already, WeWork’s hoped-for valuation has plunged by more than half, or some $30 billion.By Friday morning, Neumann’s company had hastily filed an amended prospectus for an initial public offering -- one that will test not only WeWork and its guru-CEO but, in many ways, an entire generation of money-burning, grow-at-all-cost startups.In a matter of weeks, WeWork’s IPO has gone from one of the most hotly anticipated deals of the decade to perhaps one of the most dreaded. Despite growing skepticism over WeWork’s business prospects, Neumann has resisted corporate-governance changes that would be considered standard elsewhere.The chaos was apparent Thursday and Friday, as WeWork picked a stock exchange, emailed bankers and filed its new prospectus -- all in about 12 hours.Nasdaq ListingDefying skeptics -- among them, some of its own financial backers -- WeWork is plowing ahead with plans to go public on the Nasdaq stock market. Not even Nasdaq officials knew for certain that the company would chose the exchange until the last minute on Thursday, according to people familiar with the matter.Emails were flying into the night. The new prospectus hit just after 6 a.m. on Friday.Now, yet another deadline looms: September 27, the Friday before Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. Neumann is expected to observe the holiday and be out of communication for several days, people familiar with WeWork said. WeWork representatives did not respond to a request for comment.Neumann didn’t get where he is, atop one of the most talked-about startups of the decade, by sharing. But in a new prospectus WeWork disclosed that Neumann would wield less power via an unusual class of high-voting stock.Now, executives must persuade investors that their company -- which has raised $12 billion since its founding and never turned a nickel of profit -- is worth billions on the stock market. As of late Friday, it was unclear whether they would be able to start marketing the stock via a roadshow starting on Monday, as many had expected.$65 Billion Value?Unclear, too, is just what WeWork might fetch on the open market. Only months ago, some bankers whispered it might be worth as much as $65 billion. Now that figure has fallen to as little as $15 billion.Beyond a page or so of steps WeWork would take to tighten up its corporate governance practices, Friday’s amended prospectus was little changed from the initial one in August.The dedication, even the second time, is pure Neumann:TO THE ENERGY OF WE –GREATER THAN ANY ONE OF USBUT INSIDE EACH OF USAmong other things, the company will trim the voting advantage that gives Neumann sway over the board, and no member of his family will be allowed to sit on the board. WeWork will also announce a lead independent director by year’s end.The move leaves in place a rare three-class stock structure and Neumann still maintains a voting majority, so it’s unclear how much the changes will appease both investors and the banks in charge of managing WeWork’s IPO.Valuation QuestionsQuestions remain about how investors will value the fast-growing, money-losing office leasing business that’s backed by SoftBank Group Corp. Both of the company’s lead financial advisers --JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. -- have previously voiced concerns about proceeding with an IPO at a valuation around $15 billion, people briefed on the discussions have said.Looking to save the IPO and limit its downside, SoftBank is in discussions to buy about $750 million worth of additional stock in the offering, the people said.The board will have the ability to remove the CEO, and the updated prospectus has taken out a clause that previously said Neumann’s wife Rebekah -- who’s listed as a founder and chief brand and impact officer of WeWork -- will have a role choosing any new chief. Some criticized the changes as not going far enough.“This is an example of posturing,” Jeffrey Cunningham, who teaches management at Arizona State University and has served on several corporate boards, said of WeWork’s changes. The company appears to be facing pressure “to go public at a time that is inappropriate and with a governance record that is questionable.”Still, the moves drove WeWork bonds to be the biggest price gainers in high-yield bond trading for part of Friday. A Fitch Ratings analyst said the changes addressed many of the issues that the ratings company raised in downgrading WeWork’s credit grade last month.“A key component of WeWork’s model is the ability to restrain growth in the event of a downturn and these governance changes increase the likelihood that an independent board will have the power to enforce such a decision,” Kevin McNeil, a director at Fitch, said in an emailed statement.(Corrects the size of the drop in WeWork’s hoped-for valuation in fourth paragraph)\--With assistance from Michelle F. Davis, Anders Melin, Tom Giles and Crystal Tse.To contact the reporter on this story: Gillian Tan in New York at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Liana Baker at email@example.com, ;Michael J. Moore at firstname.lastname@example.org, David GillenFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Associate Stock Strategist Ben Rains dives into Apple's (AAPL) new iPhone 11s, as well as its streaming TV service and video game push. The episode also breaks down what's next for Apple stock and why the tech firm looks strong heading into the holiday shopping season. - Full-Court Finance
Facebook’s Libra is not intended to challenge the “monetary sovereignty of nations,” according to cofounder and Calibra CEO David Marcus.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- The bankruptcy of Purdue Pharma LP lays bare a distinction that the internet is making it more and more difficult to maintain: that between a company and the people who own or founded it.The Sackler family owns Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, an opioid that has contributed to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Americans. There are numerous charges and more than 2,000 lawsuits against the company and its owners, and some recent joint settlements. The company has now declared bankruptcy, and wants to give control of Purdue to a trust run by the states, cities and counties that have filed suit against it.But what about the personal fortune of the Sacklers, estimated at $13 billion or more? Under traditional corporate theory, there is a clear distinction between the assets of the corporation and those of the owners. The limited liability company can go under, but the assets of the company owners are safe — just as, say, holding shares of Volkswagen in your mutual fund did not expose you to any personal liability for the automaker’s actions in falsifying emissions data.It turns out that this distinction is harder to uphold, if only in the eyes of the public, when a single family owns and runs a company. Last week New York State alleged that the Sackler family drained at least $1 billion from Purdue for the purpose of avoiding penalties against the corporation and thus shielding its wealth. If it looks like the Sackler family was trying to avoid legal penalties and fines, there will be strong political pressure, possibly backed by public opinion, to go after those additional funds.More generally, if a company is endangered by lawsuits, and the suits are not settled, its owners have a rationale to extract money from the company and stash it far away. But doing so will elicit a legal and public response, and the distinction between the personal and the corporate will not always be respected.Consider the Federal Trade Commission’s recent settlement with Facebook, under which some of founder Mark Zuckerberg’s personal assets are potentially on the line if Facebook does not respect its privacy agreements with the federal government. Some FTC commissioners suggested harsher treatment yet for Zuckerberg’s personal assets.Or, to give another example, Senator Elizabeth Warren has been promoting the notion of personal criminal liability for corporate CEOs if the firms engage in wrongdoing. Her bill would extend corporate liability beyond the company itself, and of course most CEOs of major companies are also shareholders to some extent. Maybe the goal is to punish these individuals in their roles as executives rather than as shareholders. But such penalties would blur these distinctions in the mind of the public — and eventually, perhaps, under the law.So how does the internet matter in all this? First, social media is very effective at drumming up outrage, and negative news seems to have a longer lifespan than positive news. The media’s pre-existing negative bias has been amplified, creating further animosity against any actual or supposed corporate villain.More important, social media personalizes agency — in effect, making it easier to accuse particular individuals of wrongdoing. Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos, and the Koch brothers all have images or iconic photos that can be put into a social media post, amplifying any attack on their respective companies. It is harder to vilify Exxon, in part because hardly anyone can name its CEO (Darren Woods, since 2017), who in any case did not create the current version of the company. Putting the Exxon logo on your vituperative social media post just doesn’t have the same impact. With Bill Gates having stepped down as Microsoft CEO in 2000, it is harder to vilify that company as well.This personalization of corporate evil has become a bigger issue in part because many prominent tech companies are currently led by their founders, and also because the number of publicly traded companies has been falling, which means there are fewer truly anonymous corporations. It’s not hard to imagine a future in which the most important decision a new company makes is how personalized it wants to be. A well-known founder can spark interest in the company and its products, and help to attract talent. At the same time, a personalized company is potentially a much greater target.The more human identities and feelings are part of the equation, however, the harder it will be to keep the classic distinction between a corporation and its owners. As the era of personalization evolves, it will inevitably engulf that most impersonal of entities — the corporation.To contact the author of this story: Tyler Cowen at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Newman at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Tyler Cowen is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist. He is a professor of economics at George Mason University and writes for the blog Marginal Revolution. His books include "Big Business: A Love Letter to an American Anti-Hero."For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
There is a feeling in financial markets right now that the U.S. and global economic environments are actually improving. Look no further than Citi's Economic Surprise Index, which measures how economic data is coming in relative to expectations. For the first time since early 2019, this index has poked into positive territory.If the U.S. and global economic environments are actually improving, then the long end of the U.S. Treasury yield curve shouldn't be so low. Right now, the long end of the curve is basically screaming "recession." The data disagrees with this assessment. Almost always, the data wins out. Thus, there are murmurs out there that the long end of the yield curve should actually move higher over the next few months.While that is great news for the economy, it's bad news for growth stocks. Low rates inflated growth stocks, because as rates went lower, so did the discount rate for which investors used to discount future profits. Growth stocks get all of their value from future profits. Thus, as the discount rate on those future profits tumbled, the present value of those future profits soared, and so did growth stocks.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading TipsThe opposite could happen, too. Rates could rise, and if and when they do, growth stocks could drop. * 7 Tech Stocks You Should Avoid Now Of course, this blanket assessment doesn't apply to all growth stocks. For many of them, this unwinding of the growth trade that was inflated by low rates will just be a blip on the radar. Once rates stop moving higher, these stocks will stop moving lower, and they will continue on their secular up-trends.But, for some growth stocks, this unwinding could be more serious. Which growth stocks could get hit hardest in this unwinding period? Let's take a look at five growth stocks to sell as rates creep higher. Growth Stocks to Sell as Rates Move Higher: Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG)Source: Northfoto / Shutterstock.com YTD Gain: 88%One growth stock which looks like it could get hit particularly hard if/when rates move higher as the U.S. economic outlook improves is Chipotle Mexican Grill (NYSE:CMG).Shares of the fast-casual Mexican eatery are up more than 88% year-to-date, mostly because the company has successfully and impressively executed on its turnaround initiatives, including building-out the digital delivery business, expanding the menu, and re-branding the chain as a "healthy ingredients" restaurant. Comparable sales have turned into sharply positive territory. Margins are have run higher. Profits have soared. So has CMG stock.But part of this rally has unequivocally found support in low rates. How else do you explain a restaurant sock trading at over 45-times forward earnings? The average forward earnings multiple in the restaurant sector is 28, less than half of Chipotle's forward multiple.As such, if/when rates creep higher over the next few months, CMG stock could get hit particularly hard -- not because the fundamentals here aren't good, but because the valuation looks almost entirely dependent on rates remaining low. Workday (WDAY)Source: Sundry Photography / Shutterstock.com YTD Gain: 9%One growth stock which has already been hit hard in the unwinding of the growth trade in anticipation of higher rates is Workday (NASDAQ:WDAY).Workday is a market-leading provider of cloud-hosted enterprise resource planning solutions. The cloud growth narrative has been on fire this year. So has Workday's growth narrative. In 2019, Workday's revenues, profits, and stock have all marched higher. But, as I've pointed out before, WDAY stock has marched into aggressively overvalued territory, and investors are finally starting to notice as the company's numbers have shown signs of weakness.Over the past two months, WDAY stock has shed more than 20%, mostly thanks to slowing growth trends in the company's most recent earnings report. During those two months, the 10-Year Treasury yield actually dropped from over 2% to about 1.6%. Thus, even with the long end of the curve dropping, WDAY stock has still dropped big over the past two months because the growth narrative here is losing momentum. * 10 Battered Tech Stocks to Buy Now If the long end of the yield curve reverses course here and starts to move higher, that will add more pressure to what is an already pressured WDAY stock. That added pressure should result in material weakness in Workday stock for the foreseeable future. Match Group (MTCH)Source: Shutterstock YTD Gain: 80%Another growth stock that seems aggressively overvalued and which could get hit hard in the event that rates do move higher is Match (NASDAQ:MTCH).MTCH stock is up 80% year-to-date -- and up 400% over the past three years -- as the company has emerged as the unchallenged leader in the secular growth online dating space. Specifically, two things have happened here. One, Match has acquired all of its competition (ex: Bumble) and now holds a portfolio of apps which cumulatively dominate the entire online dating landscape. Think Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) of online dating. Two, online dating has turned into a super valuable industry, as consumers have expressed ample willingness to pay up for premium and exclusive online dating services and perks.Consequently, Match's user base, revenues, and profits have all expanded dramatically over the past few years. This big growth has fueled big gains in MTCH stock. But, this is now a stock which trades at 37-times forward earnings, on revenue and profit growth that was under 20% last quarter. That's a really big multiple for not-that-big of growth. Excluding legal fees, Facebook is growing revenues at a faster rate and profits at a comparable rate. And FB stock trades at just 19.5-times forward earnings.From this perspective, it does appear that low rates are inflating the valuation underneath MTCH stock. If/when rates do move higher from today's all time low levels, then MTCH stock could suffer from material multiple compression. Roku (ROKU)Source: Michael Vi / Shutterstock.com YTD Gain: 388%It's tough for me to put streaming device maker Roku (NASDAQ:ROKU) on any "stocks to sell" list. The long-term growth narrative is just so good. But, ROKU stock has come so far, so fast, that I do think this stock could get hit hard if/when rates creep higher.Big picture, ROKU stock is a long-term winner. The company is transforming into the cable box of the streaming TV world, and in so doing, will one day have over 100 million active accounts, from which the company will be able to extract tons of high-margin dollars through TV ad sales and subscription sharing agreements. This company is in the first few innings of a very big long term growth narrative -- and that narrative will ultimately end with ROKU stock being way higher in the long run.In the near-term, ROKU stock is ahead of itself. See the math here. It's tough to justify a price tag above $150 today for this stock, even under aggressive long-term growth assumptions. The only justification for a price tag above $150? Low rates support it. But, if that low rate support disappears, you could see a big sell-off in ROKU stock. * 7 Discount Retail Stocks to Buy for a Recession As such, while I love the growth narrative underlying ROKU stock, I'm also worried that the stock could give back gains in a hurry if/when rates move higher. Starbucks (SBUX)Source: monticello / Shutterstock.com YTD Gain: 41%Joining Chipotle as the only other non-tech growth stock on this list, coffee retail giant Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) seems susceptible to a sizable pullback in the event rates move higher.The logic here is simple. Starbucks is firing on all cylinders today -- positive comps, upward moving margins, double-digit profit growth, etc. That's why SBUX stock has rallied 41% year-to-date to fresh all-time highs.Starbucks is also growing at a slower pace than it has over the past several years. Sure, profits are expected to grow at a 10%-plus pace for the foreseeable future. But since 2014, EPS growth has been largely north of 15%, and often north of 20%.During that 15%-plus profit growth stretch, SBUX stock averaged a 25-times forward earnings multiple. Today, during a slower growth era, SBUX stock is trading at 29-times forward earnings. A bigger multiple for slower growth? That doesn't make sense … unless you consider that today's valuation is inflated by low rates.That's exactly what is happening. SBUX stock is trading at a bigger-than-normal multiple today for slower-than-normal growth because low rates support a bigger multiple. That low rate support could disappear over the next few months. If it does, SBUX stock could be due for some serious pain.As of this writing, Luke Lango was long FB. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 10 Recession-Resistant Services Stocks to Buy * 7 Hot Penny Stocks to Consider Now * 7 Tech Stocks You Should Avoid Now The post 5 Growth Stocks to Sell as Rates Move Higher appeared first on InvestorPlace.
Facebook (FB) plans to launch its WhatsApp payment service in India before the year wraps up, according to WhatsApp India head Abhijit Bose.
Facebook’s planned digital currency, Libra, has elicited strong reactions. Some think it poses a serious risk to the global financial system.
U.S. internet stocks have been red-hot once again in 2019, gaining roughly 45% year-to-date.Each month, Nomura Instinet analyst Mark Kelley tracks the latest trends in global internet usage by taking a look at Sensor Tower data for the month. In addition, Kelley looks at recent headlines to get a sense of which internet stocks are winning over users. Investors who get ahead of the curve by examining internet usage data can potentially get valuable insight heading into third-quarter earnings season for stocks. * 10 Recession-Resistant Services Stocks to Buy With that in mind, here's a list of Nomura Instinet's top five internet stocks to buy now and their usage trends from the month of August.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips Internet Stocks to Buy Now: Spotify (SPOT)Source: Spotify Spotify (NYSE: SPOT) was once again the most downloaded music streaming app in August. The Spotify app had more than 17.7 million downloads. Downloads were up 18% in August from a year ago -- its lowest growth rate since February.However, Spotify downloads again outpaced its closest global competitors in YouTube Music (12.3 million), JioSaavn Music (5.2 million) and Deezer (3.4 million). Kelley says Spotify's 10% price hike in Norway doesn't seem to have had a major impact on revenue or cancellations, potentially opening up the door for higher prices in other regions.Nomura Instinet has a "buy" rating and $190 price target for SPOT stock. InterActiveCorp (IAC)Source: Rob Thurman Via FlickrInterActiveCorp (NASDAQ:IAC) is an 80% stakeholder in Match Group (NASDAQ:MTCH), the parent company of popular dating sites including Match.com, Tinder, OKCupid and PlentyOfFish.One of the biggest overhangs for IAC stock this year has been the launch of a Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) dating service late last year. Kelley says the latest data suggests Tinder has not been negatively impacted by Facebook's service. He says Facebook is a manageable risk for Match, and online dating is far from a "winner take all" market. Subsidiary Hinge was a major growth source in August, with year-over-year downloads up 56%. * 7 Tech Stocks You Should Avoid Now Nomura Instinet has a "buy" rating and $314 price target for IAC stock. Pinterest (PINS)Source: Nopparat Khokthong / Shutterstock.com Pinterest (NYSE:PINS) had 10.7 million downloads in August, up 18% from a year ago. The social media company also opened a new headquarters in Australia in August and reported a large earnings beat after making improvements to its platform.Kelley is projecting a three-year compound annual revenue growth rate for Pinterest of 42% -- the highest among the 12 internet media stocks under coverage and well above the 25% average growth rate of the group. Unlike some of its unprofitable peers, Kelley is also projecting annual net income growth of 45% as well.Nomura Instinet has a "buy" rating and $39 price target for PINS stock. Facebook (FB)Source: rvlsoft / Shutterstock.com Facebook and its advertising business just keep on trucking through all the political controversy, regulation, boycotts, lawsuits and antitrust probes.FB stock is up another 42.8% in 2019. Facebook's WhatsApp was the most downloaded social media app in August, with more than 57.2 million downloads. Messenger was a close second with 55.3 million downloads followed by the Facebook app with 52.5 million downloads and Instagram with 36.9 million downloads. While download growth on these four platforms slowed from a year ago, a clear sweep of the top four spots and a total of nearly 200 million downloads is extremely impressive.Nomura Instinet has a "buy" rating and $235 price target for FB stock. Alphabet (GOOGL)Source: achinthamb / Shutterstock.com In addition to Facebook and Match, Kelley says Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL) is the big winner from the August usage data.Behind the four Facebook platforms, YouTube was the most-downloaded social media app in August with more than 23.3 million downloads. Surprisingly, users downloaded Google Search 8.2 million times in August, up 39% from a year ago. Search had previously not gotten more than 5.9 million downloads in any month during the past year. The Google Chrome app also got 6.4 million downloads in August.Nomura Instinet has a "buy" rating and $1,400 price target for GOOGL stock.As of this writing, Wayne Duggan did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 10 Recession-Resistant Services Stocks to Buy * 7 Hot Penny Stocks to Consider Now * 7 Tech Stocks You Should Avoid Now The post Nomura Instinet's Top 5 Internet Stocks to Buy Now appeared first on InvestorPlace.
Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) stock is the little brother of the "Cloud Czars." With a market cap of $534 billion, Facebook trades at 31.7 times last year's earnings. This is helped by a balance sheet that showed $41 billion in cash and no debt in June, even while the company spends capital at a $15 billion per year rate.Source: rvlsoft / Shutterstock.com Facebook's rate of capital spending growth is extraordinary. The company's capital budget was $293 million in 2009. In 2018 it was almost $14 billion.Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL) gets primary credit for creating the cloud concept. Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) has turned the cloud into a market. But no company has been as dedicated to pushing cloud technology as Facebook. Its Open Compute Project, launched in 2011, continues to push cloud costs down.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading TipsYet none of the Cloud Czars -- not Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), not Alphabet, not Amazon, not even Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) -- is as hated as Facebook. Blame the Free WebMany have come to believe that Facebook is partially responsible for the election of President Donald Trump. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg later testified that he believes Facebook did not "do enough" to prevent disinformation and fake news articles from swaying election results.While Alphabet is actively pushing beyond its free web roots, Facebook is doubling down on all things free. As politicians call for the breaking up of the free web's giants, Facebook is choosing to more tightly integrate its ancillary services. * 7 Tech Stocks You Should Avoid Now This doesn't mean Facebook is ignoring the threats. In July, Facebook agreed to pay $5 billion to settle a Federal Trade Commission investigation into its privacy practices. In the aftermath of this fine, Facebook is changing its default settings on photos, so it won't automatically use facial recognition software to tag photos. This will ease the automatic collection of biometric data. Facebook is also considering hiding the likes on its news feed and is meeting with government officials trying to protect the 2020 election.In general, however, Facebook is showing government the same blank, bland face Zuckerberg showed in Congressional testimony last year. It tells the government what it thinks lawmakers want to hear but otherwise does what it wants. Exasperated, Oregon Senator Ron Wyden recently suggested that Zuckerberg belongs in prison. The Facebook FightbackUnder the surface, Facebook is fighting back.It is paying for a new series of fact-based media templates in Europe as part of its Facebook Watch platform. It has launched pop-up windows on its social media platforms to counter misinformation about vaccines. Facebook has also issued a white paper on data portability -- the notion that a user should be able to move their data from Facebook to another platform -- in response to growing demand.Facebook is often used for phishing. Picture friends' faces popping up through Messenger, earnestly asking for money or personal information. I have personally faced several of these phishing attempts and twice almost gave hackers hundreds of dollars as a result.Mainly, Facebook continues to treat political problems as technical ones. After this summer's Messenger Kids breach, which exposed thousands of kids to unauthorized users, its response was a technically focused letter.The test of whether this attempt to fight back is working may be Libra, its blockchain project. Libra seeks to replicate services already available from Chinese rivals like Alibaba (NYSE:BABA) and Tencent (OTCMKTS:TCEHY). While trying to get support, Facebook has said blockchain technology will protect payments and lower costs. The European Union is already investigating Libra to see if it harms its competitors, even before its launch. FB Stock's Secret SauceWhile there are analysts who think Facebook should double down on services, say by buying Yelp (NYSE:YELP), it is Facebook's data centers and its cloud network that hold the key to its future.That network now includes two data centers in Europe and an 11-story center in Singapore, all built with the low-cost standards created by the Open Compute Project.Analysts will continue to look at Facebook through the front door of political controversy and privacy policies. They need to look instead at the back door of Facebook's data center footprint.If the former is too deep and technical for you, Facebook is a buy.Dana Blankenhorn is a financial and technology journalist. He is the author of the environmental story, Bridget O'Flynn and the Bear, available at the Amazon Kindle store. Write him at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter at @danablankenhorn. As of this writing he owned shares in AAPL, MSFT AMZN and BABA. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 10 Recession-Resistant Services Stocks to Buy * 7 Hot Penny Stocks to Consider Now * 7 Tech Stocks You Should Avoid Now The post Growing Data Center Network Makes Facebook Stock a 'Buy' appeared first on InvestorPlace.
ZURICH/LONDON, Sept 16 (Reuters) - Facebook's attempt to drag cryptocurrencies into the mainstream with its Libra digital coin met with further scepticism on Monday when an ECB board member said such "stablecoins" posed serious risks. Benoit Coeure told central bank officials from around the world that the new breed of virtual currencies were largely untested and pledged a tough regulatory approach, adding to warnings from authorities elsewhere.
The market didn't end last week on a high note, but then again, it didn't need to. Even with Friday's 0.07% setback for the S&P 500, the index still mustered just a little less than a 1% advance for the five-day stretch. That makes a third winning week in a row.Source: Shutterstock Oversized Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is the reason the broad market could get up and over the hump, falling nearly 2% in Friday's action after investors rethought the costs related to the company's strategy of attracting people to its hardware and new streaming service. That impact was more than smaller names like General Electric (NYSE:GE) could offset. GE was up nearly 1% on the last day of last week, buoyed by optimism surrounding what should amount to a $5 billion debt reduction, funded by asset sales. * 10 Recession-Resistant Services Stocks to Buy As for names worth exploring as Monday's action gets going, however, the stock charts of Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Merck (NYSE:MRK) are of the most interest. Here's why.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips Microsoft (MSFT)There's no denying Microsoft shares have been one of the market's best and most reliable performers for years now. Even the headwind that hammered most names late last year wasn't horrific for MSFT stock, and shares recovered quite nicely this year from that lull.This year's overheated rally looks like it has run its full course though, progressing even faster than the 2017/2018 gain. Although it's not past the point of no return yet, the action since late July suggests the bears are taking their shot. They've been nice enough to leave clear clues. * Click to EnlargeThe biggest clue to speak of is the converging wedge shape that's formed since July. The lower boundary, plotted in blue, traces all the lows going back to December's low. * Although not overwhelmingly so, the volume tide has started to lean bearishly. Should the Chaikin line on the weekly chart fall under zero, that may be the proverbial tipping point. * As for a plausible downside target, the past two major setbacks have pulled Microsoft shares just below the 200-day moving average line, marked in white on both stock charts. Merck (MRK)Shares of drugmaker Merck have dished out a healthy, even if at times uneven, rally over the course of the past year and a half. Even factoring in the current lull, MRK stock is still up 56% from its early 2018 low.The complexion of that advance has slowly but surely -- maybe even imperceptibly -- taken a turn for the worst though. While still seemingly in bullish mode, the momentum is fading and the pokes at key technical floors are more frequent and more potent. * 7 Tech Stocks You Should Avoid Now * Click to EnlargeThe slowdown of the advance is easily indicated on the daily chart, with each resistance line, marked in yellow, plotted at a shallower direction than the prior one. * It's not a detail even the most focused of chart watchers would notice or care about, but each peak of the Chaikin line since the beginning of this year has been lower than the past, underscoring the slowdown. Ditto for the MACD crossunders. * So far the 200-day moving average line, marked in white on both stock charts, has held up as a floor. The straight-line support that tags all the key lows since early 2018, however, was tested again last week. That's the make-or-break level, marked as a dashed blue line on the weekly chart. Facebook (FB)It's interesting. All stock charts demonstrate some degree of interplay with their moving average. Sometimes it means a lot, and sometimes it means little. It's something that at the very least has to be respected though.To that end, Facebook has been strangely responsive to its moving average line, sometimes being stopped and reversed at them, and other times being blasted past them when they're passed. That's what makes the past couple of weeks so curious … and a little bearish. * Click to EnlargeThe chief worry here is how FB stock tested but failed to hurdle the 50-day moving average line, plotted in purple on both stock charts, this month. As the daily chart shows, the 50-day line has been a biggie. * That being said, there are still a couple of other, albeit less meaningful, moving average lines that have been boundaries in the past that could become a boundary again. * Fueling the prospect of more downside is the fact that, over the long haul, FB stock is no stranger to major moves. The stock is still closer to being overbought than not from this year's rebound move, as indicated by the weekly chart's RSI tool.As of this writing, James Brumley did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. You can learn more about him at his website jamesbrumley.com, or follow him on Twitter, at @jbrumley. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 10 Recession-Resistant Services Stocks to Buy * 7 Hot Penny Stocks to Consider Now * 7 Tech Stocks You Should Avoid Now The post 3 Big Stock Charts for Monday: Merck, Facebook and Microsoft appeared first on InvestorPlace.
(Bloomberg) -- The We Co. roadshow is set to begin this week, perhaps as soon as today. Such corporate processionals through the ranks of blue-blooded Wall Street institutions are usually a triumph for buoyant, young companies. WeWork’s roadshow, on the other hand, will likely more closely resemble Cersei Lannister’s humiliating march to the Red Keep in Game of Thrones.Shame! WeWork’s valuation, $47 billion in a private funding round last January, could be set as low as $12 billion.Shame! Shame! Investors will no doubt be distrustful of any evidence of apparent self-dealing by the chief executive officer, Adam Neumann, such as buying properties and leasing them to the company. (WeWork took additional steps on Friday to change some of the unorthodox aspects of its governance structure and seek an independent board member.)As the nine-year-old office-sharing startup continues its stumble to the public markets, some prognosticators see this moment as something more significant: that a WeWork belly-flop portends the end of the unicorn era in Silicon Valley.The argument goes like this: SoftBank, the Japanese conglomerate and its $100 billion Vision Fund, has become an engine pushing the technology market to its limit. If it’s forced to retreat on its $10 billion commitment to WeWork, SoftBank will reconsider the nearly blind sanguinity that has perverted incentives for founders and distorted valuations in the industry over the last few years.In this seductive vision of a calamitous—and cleansing—WeWork initial public offering, modesty will once again return to Silicon Valley; humbled venture capitalists will stop bidding the valuations of unprofitable startups into the stratosphere; and the unicorns—those magical startups worth a $1 billion or more—will be put out to pasture, their legendary horns clipped like the tusks of poached African elephants.But that’s probably wishful thinking.The current cycle in tech started more than a decade ago, fueled by excitement over the iPhone, Facebook Inc. and the infusions of cash from a new generation of VCs like Andreessen Horowitz and Y Combinator. Business cycles tend to last seven to 10 years in Silicon Valley, and the resulting boom should have ended by now. But that was before the longest bull market in American history and a seemingly never-ending supply of venture capital from an array of new sources, including wealthy Chinese investors and Saudi Arabian oil money.It doesn’t appear to be stopping anytime soon. The stocks of Dropbox Inc., Lyft Inc., Slack Technologies Inc. and Uber Technologies Inc. are all under their IPO prices. And yet, many investors still believe.Uber lost $5.2 billion last quarter, dismissed more than 800 employees in the last two months and lost a policy battle with California lawmakers last week that could rock its business model. Somehow, Uber is still worth a cool $57 billion. Meanwhile, SoftBank says it’s going to raise another Vision Fund, with contributions from Apple Inc., Microsoft Corp. and Foxconn—this one even larger than the last.The belief underlying the persistent tech boom is that savvy entrepreneurs in vast markets with access to enough capital can engineer their way through even the most challenging issues. Witness CloudFlare Inc., the unprofitable internet infrastructure company that raised $525 million last week at a higher-than expected market value of $4.4 billion. Investors were able to overlook recent controversies over unsavory former CloudFlare clients, like the forum where a mass shooter hung out, and the stock popped on the first day of trading.What will it take to really put an end to the unicorn era? Perhaps an economic recession and an accompanying withdrawal of overseas capital from the Valley. Perhaps it will take a total collapse of a once-promising unicorn to change the risk tolerance of conservative investors like endowments, pensions and sovereign wealth funds.If the WeWork IPO flops, technologists will try to dismiss it as an outlier, the bad fortune of a real estate startup that was never truly a tech company. It will be viewed not as an indictment of current excess in Silicon Valley but as an exception to it. That’s not realistic, but then again, neither are unicorns.This article also ran in Bloomberg Technology’s Fully Charged newsletter. Sign up here.And here’s what you need to know in global technology newsSpeaking of SoftBank, some of its other companies would be hit hard by California’s new labor bill that would force gig economy companies to hire their workers.Lawmakers are seeking information from customers of the Big Tech companies. A House panel investigating potential antitrust violations has contacted customers of Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook, according to documents reviewed by Bloomberg. They also asked the companies to hand over documents.Disney CEO Bob Iger left the board of Apple. The long-allied companies are now streaming rivals.Stanford University took money from Jeffrey Epstein, too. The school, located in the heart of Silicon Valley, received a $50,000 donation from a foundation backed by the late sex offender in 2004. Other donations to Harvard and MIT are prompting scrutiny of the schools and their faculties.A former Golden State Warrior is the U.S. face of Jumia, the Amazon.com of Africa.To contact the author of this story: Brad Stone in San Francisco at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Mark Milian at email@example.comFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
This has been a good year for Snap (NYSE:SNAP). Snap stock is up 186% in 2019, and it even reached a new 52-week high at the end of July. Source: dennizn / Shutterstock.com SNAP's stock growth continues to outperform peers like Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Twitter (NYSE:TWTR). CEO Evan Spiegel been selling millions of the company's shares. Just last week he sold over $33 million worth of SNAP stock. This seems to be a recent trend as both Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) CEO Jeff Bezos have also been selling millions of their company's shares.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading TipsSnap has been steadily improving its fundamentals after a rough 2018. The company's user base continues to steadily grow, which has boosted revenue and increased investor confidence. * 7 Discount Retail Stocks to Buy for a Recession Even still, some Wall Street analysts are hesitant when it comes to SNAP and the stock is considered a moderate buy. So is Snapchat stock worth investing in? Here are three things to consider first. 1\. User Base GrowthIn 2018, Snap's user base struggled after the launch of Instagram Stories, but the company has experienced a major shift this year. During the first quarter, Snap added four million daily active users and this figure increased to 13 million during the second quarter. The company now boasts 500 million monthly active users. This growth was largely fueled by Snap's updated version of its app and an increased focused on AR technology. Additionally, Snap recently announced it is partnering with Spotify to allow users to share music and podcasts directly within the app. 2\. Snap Flies under Regulation RadarThis year, the news has been relatively light when it comes to SNAP. The company has avoided much of the criticism it endured in 2018 over top executives leaving the company. Most importantly, SNAP avoided the regulatory issues that have plagued Facebook and other big tech companies. Facebook, in particular, has dealt with a $5 billion FTC fine and criticism over its new cryptocurrency Libra. 3\. Snap and GamingSnap's advertising business continues to be a strong source of revenue but that company's gaming business is where the real opportunity could lie.Last April, the company launched Snap Games, which quickly attracted the attention of the gaming developer Zynga (NASDAQ:ZNGA).Zynga introduced a new battle royale game exclusively on Snap's platform called Tiny Royale. SNAP also introduced five other titles when it launched in the spring. According to Evercore ISI analyst Kevin Rippey, Snap Games could bring in hundreds of millions of dollars in sales by 2020. The Bottom Line on Snap StockDuring its most recent earnings report, company executives seemed optimistic about SNAP's future growth prospects. The company's third-quarter revenue guidance has SNAP earning between $410 million and $435 million in revenue. And this is entirely possible if the company can keep growing its user base, increase engagement on its platform, and find new sources of revenue. All in all, we can expect good things from SNAP stock in the coming years. As of this writing, Jamie Johnson did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned stocks. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 10 Big IPO Stocks From 2019 to Watch * 7 Discount Retail Stocks to Buy for a Recession * 7 Stocks to Buy Benefiting From Millennial Money The post Here are 3 Reasons Why SNAP Stock is Soaring in 2019 appeared first on InvestorPlace.
Now, its Cash app offers services like check depositing, peer-to-peer transfers and bank transfers —and reportedly, the company is looking into adding a stock trading service. Bloomberg reports that the company is already testing the feature with employees and has created a video for internal use. Bloomberg reports that the company is already testing the feature with employees and has created a video for internal use.Such a trading app, would put the company in direct competition with the startup Robinhood and other trading apps.
(Bloomberg) -- A House panel investigating big tech companies for potential antitrust violations is seeking information from customers of Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook about the state of competition in digital markets and the adequacy of existing enforcement, according to documents reviewed by Bloomberg.It’s the latest development in the bipartisan congressional investigation being conducted by House antitrust subcommittee chair David Cicilline, a Democrat from Rhode Island.The eight-page survey doesn’t mention any companies by name, but it seeks information about the industries they dominate such as mobile apps and app stores, search engines, digital advertising, social media, messaging, online commerce and logistics as well as cloud computing.The survey asks respondents to identify the top five providers for the various digital services and how much it paid each of those providers since Jan. 1 2016. It also asks for any allegations of antitrust violations or business practices that hurt competition. The committee offered respondents the possibility of confidentiality if they desired.The panel has asked for responses to its survey by mid-October.Assessing AntitrustThe survey appears geared toward businesses that pay the big technology companies for services such as cloud computing, digital advertising and help selling mobile apps and products online. It doesn’t appear to focus on general retail consumers that buy products from Amazon or iPhones from Apple.It also shows how regulators are relying on customers and competitors of Big Tech to help them better understand digital markets and and how dominant players can stifle competition. The Federal Trade Commission has been quietly interviewing online merchants that sell goods on Amazon to better understand the business.The questionnaire shows the House panel trying to assess the grip big technology companies have in various markets, a first step in probing for antitrust violations. If the panel finds competition is so scant that the customers of big technology companies have no viable alternatives, it justifies further scrutiny of business practices as well as mergers and acquisitions.The questions also suggest the panel is open to examining how antitrust laws are applied in digital markets and if enforcement and laws need to be updated.A Google spokesman declined to comment. Apple didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. Amazon and Facebook both declined to comment, but pointed to previous comments by executives in which both companies said they welcomed government scrutiny and maintain they exist in markets with healthy competition. Emails to representatives for the House committee weren’t immediately answered.The survey sent to customers follows the public disclosure of letters the House antitrust subcommittee sent to Google parent Alphabet Inc., Amazon.com Inc., Facebook Inc. and Apple Inc. Those letters, posted online, seek detailed information about acquisitions, business practices, executive communications, previous probes and lawsuits. The letters followed a July hearing in which lawmakers grilled tech executives.The House panel has been the most visible of various probes of technology companies. Representative Cicilline has been a vocal critic.Speaking at an antitrust conference in Washington, D.C. last week, he said, “you would be amazed” at the number of companies that have come forward with concerns about the potentially unfair way that big tech companies compete. Some have even expressed fear that the tech giants will respond with economic retaliation if the smaller companies’ concerns are made public, Cicilline said, without providing more detail.The House panel’s probe is part of a broader examination of the control companies such as Amazon, Google and Facebook have over the U.S. economy. The FTC is investigating Amazon and Facebook while the Justice Department is probing Google. Separately, 50 state attorneys general have announced an antitrust probe of Google.(Adds requested date for survey responses in fifth paragraph. An earlier version corrected the spelling of David Cicilline.)\--With assistance from Naomi Nix and Ben Brody.To contact the reporter on this story: Spencer Soper in Seattle at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.com, Ian FisherFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Officials from 26 central banks, including the U.S. Federal Reserve and the Bank of England, will meet with representatives of Libra in Basel on Monday, the FT said, citing officials. Libra's founders have also been invited to answer key questions about the currency's scope and design, FT said. Facebook did not immediately respond to Reuters' request for comment outside regular business hours.