|Day's Range||127.40 - 130.25|
Zoom Video Communications is about to do its part to save the USPS.
Loon, a unit of Google's owner Alphabet Inc, which uses high-altitude balloons to provide mobile internet to remote areas, has signed a key access airspace agreement with Uganda. The deal grants Loon overflight rights crucial to its plans to provide floating balloon-enabled internet services in neighboring Kenya, the company said on Tuesday. The permissions are key to the firm's ambition of providing internet access to rural and remote populations that receive poor connectivity from traditional telecoms in Kenya, said Scott Coriell, the company's Head of Global Communications.
Wall Street pays attention when David Tepper makes an investment move. Tepper started out his career as a credit analyst with Goldman Sachs in the 1980s, diving right away into risky bonds and other distressed debt assets. Older financial hands noticed that Tepper was right more than he was wrong with this gutsy strategy, and brought in high returns for the firm.Tepper earned a reputation as a go-getter who was not afraid to take hair-raising chances. When he parted ways with Goldman Sachs in 1992, he took that attitude with him when hefounded Appaloosa Management the next year.Starting with $57 million in available capital, Tepper has since built Appaloosa into a behemoth – the fund now has over $17 billion in assets under management. With Appaloosa, Tepper has maintained his preference for high-risk, high-yield distressed debt investments, but among the firm’s assets are $3.4 billion in 13F securities. And the list of stocks that Tepper’s fund has bought into is most interesting.Even though Tepper’s reputation was built on taking risks, Appaloosa’s three biggest investments, comprising 44% of the holdings in the Q3 13F filing, were Alphabet, Facebook, and Amazon – three of the four FANG stocks. Collectively, these companies hold the third, fourth, and fifth spots among the largest publicly traded companies in the world, and none of them are considered “high-risk.” Tepper has put over $1.5 billion dollars into these three companies – with large increases in his holdings of them in Q3.Remember, of course, that Tepper still must ensure that investors receive the returns they were sold on. The FANG stocks, all giants in the high-return tech sector, are one way of doing just that.We’ve opened the TipRanks database to get the lowdown on Tepper’s big FANG investments. A brief look at the TipRanks Stock Screener tool shows that all three have a clear positive upside potential for the near future, and ‘very positive’ investor sentiment – a sign that these stocks are attracting and holding new investors. More importantly, all three have the coveted ‘Strong Buy’ consensus rating from the Wall Street analysts. Let’s dive deeper, to find out what those analysts have to say.Amazon (AMZN)Amazon is the world’s third largest publicly traded company, with a market cap of $872 billion, and has absolutely dominated online retail since the 2000s. The company is a known innovator in warehousing techniques and processes, and has developed a ruthless reputation for improving cost efficiencies.Large capital expenditures in the past year depressed EPS according to the most recent quarterly earnings report. The key metric was down by 9%, at $4.23 against the $4.62 estimate, even though top-line revenues gained 24% and reached $70 billion for the quarter. The company has spent over $1.6 billion in 2019 on promoting and expanding its one-day delivery. Even though management acknowledged that the capex pushed down earnings, they also announced a further $1.5 billion spend in Q4, on expansions of the warehouse network and product lines. Not many companies can react to a bottom line hit from high capex by announcing even higher future capex. Amazon gets away with it due to its size, its economies of scale, and its strong cash flows.Tepper bought up 80,000 shares of AMZN in Q3, an increase of 44% in his stake in the company. Appaloosa’s holding of AMZN shares is now 265,000 and is worth over $460 million at current prices.Of the stocks in this list, Amazon shows the highest potential upside. Youssef Squali, writing for SunTrust Robinson, explains why: “We're incrementally positive on AMZN going into what should be a robust holiday season, given the company's outsized growth within US ecommerce, of which we estimate AMZN will claim ~37% of total GMV this holiday season…”Squali puts a $2,350 price target on the stock, showing his confidence in an impressive 34% upside potential for the stock. (To watch Squali’s track record, click here)Let’s face it, Wall Street agrees with him on this. AMZN shares have a single Hold rating, but a whopping 38 Buys – giving the stock a Strong Buy consensus rating. Amazon shares are famously expensive, at $1,761, and the average price target of $2,151 shows that Wall Street anticipates 22% upside growth. (See Amazon's stock analysis on TipRanks)Facebook (FB)We’ve all heard the ugly details of Facebook’s recent troubles. User privacy breaches, a $5 billion FCC fine, accusations of political censorship, and Mark Zuckerberg’s bungled efforts at PR damage control all took a toll on the stock. And so, despite hitting an all-time high share price back in July of 2018 and giving the impression that the sky was the limit, the company fell hard and fast through 2H18 and has had difficulty regaining traction in 2019.A look at the price chart shows that FB’s troubles may be in the rearview mirror as the stock has been rising through the fourth quarter of this year. Revenues and earnings both beat the forecasts in Q3, with the top line at $17.65 billion and EPS at $2.12. Usage metrics across the company’s apps remain high, with Monthly Average Users meeting expectations at 2.45 billion and Daily Active Users edging over the estimates at 1.62 billion.The sheer size of those numbers opens a window to Facebook’s underlying strength, and the reason the social media giant was able to weather its recent storms: the company is simply huge. With 2.45 billion monthly active users, Facebook is reaching up to one-third of the world’s total population – and a higher proportion of those with internet access. Advertisers will pay handsomely for that kind of reach, and Facebook shares show the result: the stock is up 54% in 2019, more than double the S&P 500’s year-to-date gain.Tepper was impressed enough with Facebook to boost his fund’s holding by 53%. Appaloosa added 975,000 shares of FB to its portfolio in Q3, bringing the total holding to 2.825 million. That’s worth over $503 million today, and makes up 15.9% of Appaloosa’s total 13F portfolio.The view from Wall Street is bullish on Facebook as well. Ronald Josey, of JMP Securities, puts forth the bull case bluntly: “We continue to be impressed with Facebook’s execution both on the engagement and monetization fronts and we do not foresee these trends changing dramatically. On the contrary, usage is improving, and we believe more advertisers are devoting greater budgets to Facebook.”Along with the Outperform rating, Josey’s $250 price target implies a steady upside of 24% to the stock. (To watch Josey’s track record, click here)Also optimistic is Piper Jaffray analyst Michael Olsen. In a December 3 note, Olsen initiated coverage of the stock, saying, “Following a turbulent few years for Facebook, we believe the company has emerged well positioned… Ad spend continues to shift online and Facebook is a beneficiary… We are modeling FCF/shr growth to average >20% over the next three years.”Olsen sees continued regulatory issues as a source of risk, but believes the company has the resources to meet the challenge. He puts a Buy rating on the stock, and his $230 price target indicates room for 14% growth on the upside. (To watch Olsen’s track record, click here)Overall, FB shares have a Strong Buy consensus rating, based on an impressive 30 Buy ratings given in the past three months. There are still 2 Holds and 2 Sells on the stock, left over from the company’s difficulties. The average price target, $234.70, suggests an upside of 17% from the current share price. (See Facebook stock analysis on TipRanks)Alphabet (GOOG)GOOG looks like a compelling investment. The stock has outperformed the S&P 500 this year, up 31%. Shares have dipped slightly at the end of October, after the company missed the earnings forecast by 19%. EPS was reported at $10.12 against an estimate of $12.42. Revenues were strong, at $40.5 billion beating the estimate by a half-percent, and the stock has since recouped its loss and then some.Tepper has bought up 229,900 Class C GOOG shares in Q3. Clearly, he’s not interested in controlling the company but is simply seeking a steady return. His purchase of GOOG more than doubled his stake in Alphabet, making the total holding 444,900 shares currently valued at $542 million.Alphabet gets plenty of love from the Street’s analysts, too. Citi’s Jason Bazinet took over his firm’s coverage of GOOG shares last week, and promptly bumped his price target up by 3% to $1,500. He wrote, “We expect Alphabet's growth to slow to mid-teens over next three years. Nonetheless, we believe the company's operating leverage may improve and are not concerned by regulatory headwinds.” Bazinet’s price target suggests a 11% upside to GOOGL. (To watch Bazinet’s track record, click here)Michael Olsen, quoted above on FB, was impressed with GOOG shares. He initiates coverage of the stock for Piper Jaffray with a Buy rating and another $1,500 price target. In his initiation note, he points out, “While there's no question that the company will face ongoing regulatory scrutiny, which could lead to some headline risk, the investor community has, to some degree, become numb to this and we believe the positives of the underlying business will outweigh negative news flow.” (To watch Olsen’s track record, click here)With 32 "buy" ratings against just 3 "holds," GOOGL shares have earned their Strong Buy consensus rating. The stock is not cheap, selling for a hefty $1,353, and the average price target of $1466 implies that there is room for 8% upside growth. (See Alphabet's stock analysis on TipRanks)
(Bloomberg) -- Alphabet Inc.’s Google isn’t liable for defamatory content posted on its platforms after 2009, India’s top court ruled, reaffirming immunity for Internet companies in the world’s second-most populous nation.The verdict, which reiterates a 2015 ruling, comes as a relief for social media companies, online retailers and service providers who are facing increasing pressure from the Indian government to regulate online content. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government plans to bring rules to regulate social media platforms and a law on data privacy that seek to levy heavy fines on companies in the event of violations.However, the top court ruled that Google India Pvt. Ltd. will have to face defamation charges in cases lodged before 2009, when India’s information technology laws were amended to provide online and social media service providers immunity for content posted by a third party. They will have to take down content only after a court order.“Any other view would make it a despot strangling the free flow of ideas, which is what the internet is all about,” Justices Ashok Bhushan and K.M. Joseph of the top court said in the verdict.The case originated in the south Indian state of Andhra Pradesh when a construction material company Visakha Industries Ltd. sued Google for a blog post against use and manufacture of asbestos cement sheets. Google appealed to the country’s top court after the state high court ruled against it. However, Google will still face the defamation charges because Visakha’s case was lodged before the 2009 amendment.Google maintained that content is neither published nor endorsed by the company and it is just a platform provider.To contact the reporter on this story: Upmanyu Trivedi in New Delhi at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Unni Krishnan at email@example.com, Abhay Singh, Pradeep KurupFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
The acronym FANG refers to four high-growth internet stocks. (Sometimes they're called FAANG stocks.) Here's what investors should know about FANG stocks and why they might be worth a look.
EU antitrust regulators are considering taking a tougher line against tech giants by forcing them to do more to ensure a level playing field, a senior European Commission official said on Tuesday, a move which could affect Facebook, Amazon, Apple and Google. The four U.S. tech companies are currently in EU competition enforcers' crosshairs, with rivals complaining about being shut out of key markets. The Commission has traditionally ordered companies to halt anti-competitive practices.
The rise in Huawei’s market share has displaced the other top five companies. Dongguan-based Vivo Communication Technology Co. Ltd, saw its market share slipped from 22.6% to 17.9% in the same time period. Guangdong OPPO Mobile Telecommunications Corp. Ltd, which continues to have the third-largest market share, slipped from 21.1% to 17.4%.
(Bloomberg) -- Google asked the government to eliminate rules that categorize anyone watching “child-directed” content online as under 13 while regulators revamp privacy regulations that could have a sweeping impact on the company’s YouTube video service.The Alphabet Inc. unit filed comments with the Federal Trade Commission on Monday as the agency considers changing its rules under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, or COPPA, which regulates how internet companies collect data on young people.In September, Google agreed to pay $170 million to the FTC to resolve claims that YouTube violated COPPA by serving targeted advertisements to children under 13. In response, YouTube agreed to end personalized ads on any videos deemed “made for kids” starting in January, a potential hit to sales for the company and its thousands of video creators. The FTC settlement also holds creators on the site responsible for future violations, which has sparked panic among some producers on YouTube’s sprawling network.In its comments, the company argued against FTC rules that automatically identify viewers younger than 13 based on the content of videos.“This does not match what we see on YouTube, where adults watch favorite cartoons from their childhood or teachers look for content to share with their students,” YouTube wrote in its public comments. “This is why we support allowing platforms to treat adults as adults if there are measures in place to help confirm that the user is an adult viewing kids content.”One critic of YouTube said the company’s response was inadequate.“This is a COPPA cop-out by Google,” Jeff Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy, one of the groups that complained to the FTC about YouTube. “They should be telling creators that they apologize for involving them in their massive multiyear violation of the U.S. law.”The popularity of kids’ programming has put YouTube in an uncomfortable position. The company has maintained that the site isn’t for children, and doesn’t allow viewers under the age of 13. It created a separate app for kids, but its audience is tiny compared to the full site.After the FTC settlement, YouTube told creators that they would have to identify when videos are aimed at children under 13. When that happens, YouTube now turns off ads that rely on web browsing behavior and other targeting data, which earn more for YouTube and creators.On Monday, YouTube also asked the FTC for “balanced and clear guidelines” to help creators comply with COPPA. The company said that content not intended for kids can sometimes involve a traditional kids activity, such as gaming and art. “Are these videos ‘made for kids,’ even if they don’t intend to target kids? This lack of clarity creates uncertainty for creators,” YouTube said.YouTube doesn’t disclose its sales or break out what portion of the videos on its service are “child-directed.” Indeed, the company likely can’t automatically make such nuanced judgments on the millions of videos it runs online, despite having some of the world’s best technology for identifying and categorizing images and clips.Read more: YouTube Will Rely on Spotty AI to Comply With FTC SettlementIn recent weeks, some YouTube creators launched a campaign to tell the FTC that rewriting the COPPA rules and the settlement could hurt them financially and reduce the quality of programs. The agency has received thousands of comments on what has previously been a sleepy area of law.The FTC has issued guidance under COPPA for what constitutes videos “directed to children.” YouTubers in have expressed frustration that the definitions are still too vague.The FTC also allows sites that aren’t aimed at kids to put in place an age screening for viewers. That way, if kids do end up there, the site’s operators can reduce data collection, although children often lie about their age online. Some creators, including one of those who helped launch the petition to the FTC, have urged YouTube to adopt a comparable solution. YouTube didn’t address that on Monday in its blog. To contact the reporters on this story: Ben Brody in Washington, D.C. at firstname.lastname@example.org;Mark Bergen in San Francisco at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org, Alistair BarrFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Alphabet Inc. on Monday appointed Nobel Prize-winner Frances Arnold to its board of directors. Arnold, the Linus Pauling professor of chemical engineering, bioengineering, and biochemistry at the California Institute of Technology, won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2018. Her appointment is effective immediately and she will serve on Alphabet's nominating and corporate governance committees. Last week, Alphabet named Google CEO Sundar Pichai as its new CEO, company co-founder replacing Larry Page.
Cisco may announce a shift in its business model to sell semiconductors at a "Future of the Internet" event on Wednesday, says one analyst. Cisco's move would challenge Broadcom and Arista.
(Bloomberg) -- For Li Mo, the footage of black-clad people clashing with police and vandalizing storefronts proved the final straw. The images of Hong Kong protesters fighting for greater autonomy from Beijing incensed the mainland-born postgraduate student and she could no longer remain on the sidelines. So, she joined China’s fangirl army.Ever since anti-government demonstrations in Hong Kong turned violent this summer, China’s celebrity-obsessed young generation have patrolled Facebook, Twitter and Weibo, ready to pounce on perceived slights and defend their motherland. Nicknamed “fangirls” because they exhibit the same fervor most often reserved for pop-culture icons, these women and men flood social media with slogans and memes shaming brands -- sometimes with far-reaching consequences.Fangirls called out Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey for supporting Hong Kong protesters, prompting China’s state broadcaster to drop National Basketball Association games. They triggered boycotts of brands from Coach to Apple. Many got swept up by Facebook and Twitter account takedowns. And in a recent incident, the onslaught of vitriol they directed at Hong Kong pop-star Joey Yung forced her to apologize for a single Facebook selfie, but not before she got canned from a high-profile gala.The Hong Kong unrest spurred Li into action. She quickly picked up typical fangirl behavior -- endlessly liking and re-posting trending anti-protest diatribes on Weibo for example -- encouraged that hundreds of thousands shared her values. “I couldn’t remain silent any longer,” the 28-year-old said. “I don’t idolize anyone, I only idolize China.”Read More: Moment of Truth on China Is Coming for Rest of Corporate AmericaWhile many Westerners, particularly Americans, see China’s citizens as forced into supporting Beijing or muzzled from expressing their true feelings, fangirls suggest more earnest and resilient backing for their country’s government. They show how large pockets of China’s youth are rising up to defend their country against what they perceive as mistreatment and misrepresentation by outsiders, and they underscore a growing sentiment that’s shaping how China interacts with the world.China’s government has increasingly taken its propaganda efforts overseas, but fangirls’ deep convictions set them apart -- and perhaps make them more potent -- from often wooden, state-sponsored online commentators. Known as wumao, or the “50-cent army,” those bloggers are named after the amount they are said to make from each patriotic posting.The emergence of fangirls comes at a time Beijing is trying to engage younger Chinese by using rap music, cartoons and chat-app stickers to deliver Communist Party ideology. Homegrown corporations like Tencent Holdings Ltd. often aid such efforts. A system of education that often stresses the humiliation China suffered at the hands of foreigners also prepared the ground for their rise.They’re also the latest online patriots to hop the Great Firewall dividing the internet in mainland China from the rest of the world -- with a decidedly millennial twist. They call their nation “Brother Ah Zhong” (Brother China), describing it as a pop idol who debuted 5,000 years ago and now boasts a fan base of 1.4 billion.Fang Kecheng, assistant professor of communication and journalism at the Chinese University of Hong Kong sees state influence working hand-in-hand with young nationalist netizens, including fangirls who take note of the narrative on state media, then act upon it. “That’s not to say they are entirely manipulated, or being passively used as a tool,” he says. “There are things they’re searching for, such as a common identity and the ability to express their opinions.”Read More: Here’s What China Is Telling Its People About Hong Kong ProtestsJack Zhou, a 20-year-old hair stylist in central China, is one of a score of volunteer leaders of a 20,000-strong fangirl community. People like him help focus and channel raw emotions that often threaten to spill out of control. In between haircuts, he monitors a chat group of 400 users on messaging app QQ. Participants are charged with spawning content for the group’s main Weibo account. One of their latest productions is a three-minute video showcasing protester violence in Hong Kong, from setting a man on fire to ganging up on a police officer and trying to snatch his pistol. They called on those who can access sites like Facebook and YouTube to share the clip, which has English captions. “Let the world know the truth,” is their slogan.Zhou’s group has participated in several major online crusades to defend Beijing’s line on Hong Kong over the past three months, he said. They spammed Instagram accounts of pro-Beijing celebrities with emojis of the Chinese flag, infiltrated Facebook live streams to clash with pro-democracy sympathizers, and plastered Communist Party slogans on the sites of news outlets from CNN to the Washington Post. Their hard work paid off when the Communist Party’s Youth League and state media came out in praise of the campaigns, he said.Read More: China Celebrities Help Fan New Generation of NationalistsTheir motivations are widely misunderstood, said Zak Dychtwald, author of Young China: How the Restless Generation Will Change Their Country and the World. English-language media writing off Chinese pride as a product of propaganda and brainwashing only fans the flames of nationalism, he said. “There’s ardent pride in the country and fangirls want to defend it,” he added. “The energy and sentiment driving the movement in China is genuine.”Zhang Dong, 30, emigrated to Laos in 2013 to work as a tour guide after he graduated from college in China. Only then did he understand how the world depicts his country in such a “horrible” manner. Every day, he churns out dozens of posts on the accounts he registered for the purpose of discrediting Hong Kong’s protesters. He’s called them “cockroaches,” “traitors,” and “HKIS,” juxtaposing images of them with Islamic State terrorists. There’s “essentially no difference” between the two groups, he said.Zhang is proud of his independence. “I’ve never received any money from the Communist Party,” said Zhang. “If we were wumao, the Chinese government would have owed us hundreds of millions yuan by now.”Fangirls represent another front in social media giants’ efforts to curb disinformation campaigns. In August, Twitter suspended nearly 1,000 accounts originating from China, which the company identified as part of a state-backed operation to undermine Hong Kong’s protests. Facebook and Google took similar action. That take down didn’t have a lasting effect as new accounts emerged to replace those that were removed, a study from social media research firm Astroscreen shows.Read More: How Fake News and Rumors Are Stoking Division in Hong KongFangirls like Trista Wang say they have been unfairly targeted by these platforms. “Just one Chinese flag can get your account suspended,” said Wang, a traditional Chinese medicine therapist in the port city of Qingdao. She insists Facebook is biased toward Chinese patriots like her, pointing to Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg’s recent China-bashing remarks. “I used to have good feelings about Zuckerberg,” Wang said.A Facebook representative said the company only removes content that violates its community standards. In response to inquiries on two specific fangirl accounts that were disabled or restricted, the representative pointed to policy violations in relation to the use of fake identities, bullying and harassment. A Twitter representative said it acts against accounts for policy breaches but declined to comment on individual examples citing privacy and security reasons.Fangirls could disappear as fast as they emerged. That’s because nationalist movements are always a double-edged sword for the government, said Chinese University’s Fang. “When something self-organizes to a certain size, it becomes a taboo -- even if it’s only online.”Or they could morph into something more alarming. Zhou, the volunteer leader, has already become a kind of online vigilante, notifying the police about a China-based Weibo user expressing support for Hong Kong. He said he was content that the police quickly identified and arrested the blogger. “We must rally all the forces we can to eradicate the soil that breeds Hong Kong separatists,” he said.To contact the reporter on this story: Zheping Huang in Hong Kong at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Peter Elstrom at firstname.lastname@example.org, Edwin Chan, Colum MurphyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. is officially returning to the Las Vegas CES technology conference for the first time in decades to discuss its stance on consumer privacy -- rather than pitch a new hardware product.The company’s senior director of privacy Jane Horvath will be speaking on a “Chief Privacy Officer Roundtable” on Jan. 7, according to the CES agenda.Horvath, along with executives from Facebook Inc., Procter & Gamble Co., and a commissioner from the Federal Trade Commission, will discuss how companies build privacy at scale, regulation and consumer demands.Apple’s last major official appearance at CES was in 1992 when then Chief Executive Officer John Sculley gave a presentation at a Chicago version of the summit to introduce the failed Newton device.More recently, Apple’s technology has influenced CES despite the company not officially presenting. It made news last year for a privacy billboard during the Vegas event that exclaimed, “What happens on your iPhone, stays on your iPhone.” Samsung Electronics Co. and LG Electronics Inc. also touted Apple launching video streaming directly on third-party TVs.Each year, accessory makers fill the CES exhibit halls with cases and other peripherals for Apple devices. Behind the scenes, Apple managers roam the halls to identify future technology and scan the competitive landscape, while members of Apple’s supply chain team meet with component makers to potentially source parts for future devices.While Apple has taken a backstage approach to the conference, rivals including Google, Microsoft Corp. and Amazon.com Inc. have used the event to promote their latest voice-based products, spur interest from potential partners and try to beat Apple to the punch ahead of major product announcements.To contact the reporters on this story: Mark Gurman in Los Angeles at email@example.com;Ed Ludlow in San Francisco at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Tom Giles at email@example.com, Alistair Barr, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Sign up to our Brexit Bulletin, follow us @Brexit and subscribe to our podcast.Prime Minister Boris Johnson was forced onto the defensive over the U.K.’s National Health Service after a newspaper published a picture of a 4-year-old child being treated for pneumonia on the floor of a hospital emergency room.Johnson initially refused to look at a picture of the boy when confronted with it in an ITV interview, but later apologized for the poor treatment and said only his Conservatives could solve the free-to-use health system’s problems. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said Johnson’s party had failed to properly support the NHS during its nine years in power and pledged to increase investment.Must Read: Britain’s Latest Battle of Hastings Is Really About the EconomyFor more on the election visit ELEC.Key Developments:Labour’s John McDonnell lays out Labour’s early priorities in speech in LondonJohnson denies knowledge of online tricks ahead of Thursday’s voteLabour leader Jeremy Corbyn appeals for support for the NHS at rally in BristolThe BBC will hold a Question Time debate for an audience of under-30s to be broadcast at 8.30 p.m.The chance of a Conservative majority has risen to 80% -- the highest level so far -- according to BetfairHealth Secretary ‘Horrified’ by Hospital Photo (5 p.m.)Health Secretary Matt Hancock apologized for the hospital treatment of four-year-old Jack Williment-Barr, who was taken to the emergency department with suspected pneumonia and photographed lying on a pile of clothes on the floor because no bed was available (see 2:45 p.m.).Hancock said in a broadcast interview that he was “horrified” when he saw the photo.“It’s not good enough and I’ve apologized.”Hancock said Leeds General Hospital had already realized there was problem with space on the unit and had committed to trebling its size next year. He denied the situation was a result of under-funding by Conservative governments, but rather a result of increased demand on the NHS.Corbyn Blames Tories for Child on Floor (3 p.m.)Jeremy Corbyn blamed Boris Johnson’s Tories for causing the crisis in the National Health Service that saw a 4-year-old boy being treated for pneumonia on the floor of an emergency department (see 2:45 p.m.).“The Tories have had nine years to fund the NHS properly, it’s time to bring their regime to an end,” Corbyn said at a rally in Bristol, western England, as he questioned Johnson’s commitment to the U.K.’s free-to-use health service. “Elect a Labour government that’s determined to fund it properly.”Corbyn also repeated his claims the NHS is under threat in a trade deal with the U.S. after Brexit and warned that Johnson would “sell-out” the widely loved service by allowing access for U.S. corporations and pharmaceutical companies.Johnson Takes Reporter’s Phone in NHS Row (2:45 p.m.)Prime Minister Boris Johnson has faced questions all day over the case of four-year-old Jack Williment-Barr, who was taken to the emergency department with suspected pneumonia.The boy became an instant symbol of the pressures on the National Health Service after he was photographed in a newspaper lying on a pile of clothes on a hospital floor because no bed was available.On Monday, Johnson was asked for his reaction to the photograph during an interview with ITV News journalist Joe Pike. Johnson said he hadn’t seen the picture, so Pike showed it to him on his phone. The premier then took Pike’s phone and put it in his pocket, declining to look at the image.“I’ll study it later,” Johnson said. Later, he gave the journalist back his phone and said he was sorry for the ordeal the boy had suffered.“It’s a terrible, terrible photo and I apologize obviously to the family and all those who have terrible experiences in the NHS,” Johnson said. “But what we are doing is supporting the NHS.”Johnson Denies Knowledge of Web ‘Diversions’ (2:30 p.m.)Boris Johnson was cornered by factory workers at a question-and-answer session in northeast England who asked him about allegations his Conservative Party paid Google to route searches for Labour’s manifesto to a fake website it set up to criticize the opposition party’s program.Repeatedly asked about the claims, Johnson said he knew nothing about it and accused the other parties of trying to divert attention away from Brexit, which he described as the key issue in the election.“We’re accused of interfering with the internet or whatever else, it might be a lot of distractions are being brought into this debate,” Johnson said. The other parties are “throwing up more diversions to conceal what this is all about,” he told staff.The Conservatives ran into criticism in the first televised debate when they changed the name of their official twitter feed to look like a fact-checking service that was critical of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.Johnson Says Nissan Safe After Brexit (2:15 p.m.)Boris Johnson said the U.K.’s motor manufacturers will be protected after Brexit, suggesting their supply chains won’t be disrupted by Britain’s divorce from the European Union.On a visit to Sunderland in northeast England, which is home to a Nissan factory that’s the country’s largest car-making plant, the premier was asked whether he can guarantee its continued existence.“Of course. It’s absolutely vital we protect supply chains, we protect Nissan Motors, we make sure people continue to want to invest in our country,” Johnson said. “As we come out it’s all protected from the point of view of big motor manufacturing investors in our country.”McDonnell: No Blank Check for Shareholders (11:45 a.m.)Labour economy spokesman John McDonnell said the amount he would pay to nationalize key industries would not amount to a “blank check” for shareholders after he was asked if there was a price a Labour government would be unwilling to pay. He said he expects the process of bringing sectors under public control to be a “smooth transition.”“We’ll go through the normal exercises every other element of private ownership have been done in the past,” he said. “Parliament will determine the price and bonds will be issued for shares.”McDonnell: Won’t Be Capital Flight If Labour Win (11:35 a.m.)John McDonnell rejected the idea there would be a run on the pound or capital flight if Labour wins Thursday’s election.“In fact, my fear is the pound will start going up because of our investment plans,” McDonnell, Labour’s economy spokesman, said in response to a question at a campaign event in central London. “When Labour comes into power we’ll be implementing our manifesto, we’ll have a large-scale investment program where private investors will be able to get a decent rate of return, but we will not be ripped off.”McDonnell took a swipe at the Tories’ economic record by referencing sterling’s performance under recent Conservative governments. The pound fell significantly in the aftermath of the 2016 Brexit referendum, and remained volatile as negotiations with the EU proceeded.“It’s interesting when people start talking about runs on the pound and all the rest of it,” he said. “I’d just ask them to explore the recent history of the pound under the Tory government and suggest to commentators the instability brought about by a combination of incompetent management of the economy, exaggerated claims about what’s potentially available in terms of a Brexit deal, the threat of a no-deal.”“The market recognizes we have a prime minister whose word cannot be trusted,” he said.McDonnell Lays Out Labour’s First 100 Days (11:15 a.m.)Labour economy spokesman John McDonnell said he would put forward a budget “which ends austerity once and for all” on Feb. 5, if his party wins. He also said Labour would start the process of bringing the water and energy sectors under public ownership within their first 100 days.“This is the budget that will save the NHS, that starts to rebuild the public services the Tories have brought to their knees,” McDonnell said in a speech in a central London. “When they attack me, or Jeremy, we know it’s not really about us. It’s about you, they hate the people of this country.”McDonnell also said he agreed with the DUP on the issue of Boris Johnson’s trustworthiness. “I agree with Arlene Foster -- you won’t hear those words very often,” he said, in reference to the DUP leader saying Johnson broke his word on Brexit and cannot be trusted (see earlier). “You can’t trust him, you can’t trust a word he says,” McDonnell said.Johnson: Tories Making Case in ‘Every Seat’ (9 a.m.)Prime Minister Boris Johnson said his Conservative party is trying to make the case for power in “every seat” as it seeks a majority in the House of Commons in Thursday’s general election.In an interview with LBC radio from Grimsby, where the Conservatives are trying to take a seat from Labour, Johnson was asked if he wanted to break through Labour’s so-called red wall of seats in the Midlands and Northern England. “Of course, because we’re a one-nation Conservative Party and we want to make our case everywhere in the country,” Johnson replied.Johnson’s travels in the final days of the campaign show the party is trying to secure seats that have been Labour preserves for decades, an illustration of how Brexit has changed Britain’s electoral politics.Read more: Britain’s Brexit Election Is Now a Referendum on Jeremy CorbynDUP’s Foster: Johnson Broke His Word (Earlier)Democratic Unionist Party Leader Arlene Foster said Boris Johnson broke his word on Brexit and suggested she’d struggle to trust him in the future.“It says more about the person who broke their word than me and the leadership of the unionist party,” Foster told BBC Radio when asked if voters should conclude she’d lost the fight for a Brexit deal that keeps Northern Ireland on the same terms as the rest of the U.K. On the subject of taking Johnson at his word in the future, she said: “Once bitten, twice shy.”She said contrary to the premier’s assurances, tax officials told her team the Brexit deal would necessitate checks on goods coming from Great Britain to Northern Ireland -- regardless of whether they were destined for Ireland. She said she’d listened to Rishi Sunak on the radio just before her own interview (see earlier). “He very carefully didn’t say that there would be unfettered access” for trade from Great Britain to Northern Ireland, Foster said.Minister Sees EU Trade Deal Ready by 2021 (Earlier)The U.K. will meet its deadline to broker a new trade agreement with the European Union by the end of 2020, meaning there’s no need to prepare for a no-deal exit, Chief Secretary to the Treasury Rishi Sunak said. He said the outline of the deal is already enshrined in the withdrawal agreement.“The trade deal, the outlines of it, the framework of it, is already there, contained in the political declaration in quite a lot of detail,” Sunak told BBC radio. “We can go on and sort the details of that over the course of next year.”He also pushed back against the suggestion that new trade barriers will be put up between Northern Ireland and the rest of the U.K. “The prime minister has been unequivocal,” he said. “There will not be checks, there will be no new barriers to trade.”McDonnell Challenged by Billionaire Caudwell (Earlier)Labour’s finance spokesman John McDonnell was challenged in a radio conversation with billionaire Phones4U Co-founder John Caudwell, who accused the main opposition party of “destroying confidence.” Caudwell said he and other wealthy people were likely to leave the country if Labour won Thursday’s election, because of the party’s “destructive” rhetoric.Labour, Caudwell said, would “create an environment where wealthy people feel like they’re almost pariahs.”McDonnell replied that Labour was not against entrepreneurs and that all the party wanted to do was create a fair society and end “grotesque” inequality. “We’ve had a lot of discussion about how we redistribute wealth; we need to have a proper discussion about how we create it,” he said.Swinson Swings Back to People’s Vote (Earlier)Liberal Democrat Leader Jo Swinson said her party is publishing legislation to pave the way to a second referendum on European Union membership so Parliament can act quickly after the election.“The most likely way we can stop Brexit is through a people’s vote,” Swinson told BBC Radio on Monday. “There’s a much brighter future ahead if we are able to remain in the European Union.”It’s a change of direction for the Liberal Democrats, who have campaigned on a platform to cancel Brexit altogether -- though Swinson said that remains the policy in the event of a Liberal Democrat majority. She also reiterated she would not support Jeremy Corbyn as prime minister, but held out the prospect that in a hung parliament, the Labour leader might change.Earlier:Johnson Returns to Key Brexit Message as Polls Put Him AheadRemainers’ Dreams Are Dying in Boris Johnson’s Brexit ElectionBritain’s Latest Battle of Hastings Is Really About the EconomyTo contact the reporters on this story: Alex Morales in London at firstname.lastname@example.org;Greg Ritchie in London at email@example.com;Tim Ross in London at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Tim Ross at email@example.com, Stuart Biggs, Thomas PennyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
The global advertising business will continue its shift online in 2020, and Bank of America named Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ: FB ) and Twitter Inc (NYSE: TWTR ) as the two best stock plays in digital media. ...
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- Andreessen Horowitz is lauded today as one of the most influential and innovative firms in venture capital. But when it started a decade ago, the approach taken by co-founders Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz, this week's guest on Masters in Business, was derided as “crazy.” At the time, in the midst of the 2009 financial crisis, Horowitz was told “nobody needed yet another venture capital firm.” But they pushed ahead anyway. The result was firm that disrupted the Silicon Valley disruptors. Today, A16Z (as it is known) has $12 billion in assets under management across multiple funds. It was an early investor in startups such as Facebook, Airbnb, Lyft, Groupon, Twitter, Pinterest, Box and many more.Horowitz also credits the firm’s general partners, most of whom came of age in technology as founders, operators, chief executive officers or chief technology officers. He describes their experiences building successful companies as “crushingly hard,” and very much influencing the firm's thinking about startups. His latest book is “What You Do Is Who You Are: How to Create Your Business Culture.” His first book was “The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers.” His favorite books can be seen here; a transcript of the conversation is here.You can stream/download the full conversation, including the podcast extras on Apple iTunes, Overcast, Spotify, Google, Bloomberg and Stitcher. All of our earlier podcasts on your favorite pod hosts can be found here.Next week, we speak with Peter Mallouk, CEO of Creative Planning Inc., a $46 billion investment advisory firm, and author of "The 5 Mistakes Every Investor Makes and How to Avoid Them."To contact the author of this story: Barry Ritholtz at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: James Greiff at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Barry Ritholtz is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist. He is chairman and chief investment officer of Ritholtz Wealth Management, and was previously chief market strategist at Maxim Group. He is the author of “Bailout Nation.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Dec.09 -- Margrethe Vestager, the European Union’s competition and technology czar, will review how EU antitrust regulators weigh industries, following criticism that they’ve been too rigid in fining Google and blocking mobile-phone, steel and rail deals.