|Bid||0.00 x 1100|
|Ask||0.00 x 800|
|Day's Range||224.96 - 227.51|
|52 Week Range||179.23 - 237.50|
|Beta (5Y Monthly)||0.99|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||46.91|
|Earnings Date||Jul 26, 2021 - Jul 30, 2021|
|Forward Dividend & Yield||1.28 (0.56%)|
|Ex-Dividend Date||May 13, 2021|
|1y Target Est||264.39|
Cryptocurrencies have come a long way from their relatively obscure origins. While the mainstream financial world once disdained digital currencies as tools for criminals and speculators, the industry has made significant progress in establishing itself as a legitimate and (potentially) world-changing space. Bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) have seen massive growth in price and users, but there are still doubts about the consequences of wide cryptocurrency adoption.
(Bloomberg) -- The judge overseeing the high-stakes trial between Epic Games Inc. and Apple Inc. hinted at a compromise that could quell at least some of the game maker’s concerns: the ability for app developers to inform users that the iPhone maker’s virtual store isn’t their only shopping option.U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers appeared to be looking for middle ground while hearing from economists called by both companies as expert witnesses in a case that threatens to upend the multibillion-dollar marketplace for apps which run on mobile phones around the world.Epic and Apple are feuding over access to V-Bucks, the virtual currency used to buy upgrades inside of the blockbuster game Fortnite. To buy V-Bucks, Apple requires use of its own payment system that takes up to a 30% cut from developers. Epic tried to replace that system with its own, circumventing Apple’s fees and leading to Fortnite’s removal from the App Store and the ongoing trial.The judge this week questioned that Apple rule, which also blocks developers from including a link or other information in their apps to steer users away from the store to buy virtual goods elsewhere online at a discounted rate.The anti-steering policy is targeted in the lawsuit Epic filed last year alleging that Apple maintains a near-monopoly and juices profits with its App Store rules and fees. Epic is seeking to unravel those rules and pave the way for alternative payment systems.There’s more at stake than Fortnite V-Bucks. If Apple were to remove its anti-steering policy, it would likely do so for all app developers. Spotify Technology SA, Netflix Inc., and Match Group Inc. all have complained about the policy, and the major music and video streaming services have removed the ability for users to subscribe to their services from their iPhone apps altogether.Evidence in the case shows that Microsoft Corp. sought an App Store work-around as early as 2012. Representatives of the Windows software maker asked Apple if users could be allowed to subscribe to Office on Microsoft’s website, rather than inside the iPad app, to ensure a consistent user interface. Apple rejected that request despite Microsoft saying it would still pay a commission to the Cupertino, California-based company.“What’s so bad about it anyway, for consumers to have choice?” Gonzalez Rogers asked Richard Schmalensee, an economist and Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor, who was testifying Wednesday as an expert witness for Apple in the second week of trial in Oakland, California.Apple, Epic Games Have Simple Way to Avoid Trial: Fully ChargedHer question drew pushback from Schmalensee, who highlighted the downside for Apple: a decline in its App Store “revenue stream.”The professor noted that the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 2018 ruling, threw out a lawsuit that accused American Express Co. of thwarting competition by prohibiting merchants from steering customers to cards with lower fees.“If the app vendor can say, if you press this button you can buy this for less, that means the App Store can’t collect its commission,” Schmalensee said. That amounts to “undercutting” Apple’s App Store sales, he said.Sensor Tower estimates the App Store generated $22 billion in commissions last year for Apple, much of which stemmed from in-app-purchases.Gonzalez Rogers said she didn’t think the situations were “factually the same.” At real stores, customers can see signs that say they can use Visa, MasterCard and other credit card options -- unlike in the App Store. “Visual indications of options don’t exist in this circumstance.”“If Apple didn’t have these rules, would the problem be solved?” Rogers asked Epic’s economist, David Evans, who also pushed back at the compromise solution when he was on the witness stand Tuesday.“That wouldn’t eliminate the market power Apple has here, but it would certainly diminish it,” Evans said. For many apps, including game apps that don’t have alternative payment systems, “it would not be much of a solution at all,” he said.Gonzalez Rogers has been wrestling with antitrust claims against Apple’s App Store for almost a decade. An antitrust case filed by app buyers in 2011 that claims Apple’s 30% fee on developers raises consumer prices went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court before returning to her court, where it’s still pending.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- The Diem Association, a group of Facebook Inc. and 25 other companies and nonprofit groups once known as Libra, is moving its main operations to the U.S. and partnering with a bank to issue a cryptocurrency backed by U.S. dollars.The new plan includes an agreement with Silvergate Capital Corp., a prominent player in the cryptocurrency industry, which will issue the coin and manage Diem’s reserve of U.S. dollars, the association said Wednesday in a statement.Diem said it’s still building out a global payments network, with the idea that it could serve its own stablecoin or even central bank digital currencies if world governments decide to issue them.“It’s critical for the U.S. to foster innovation in this space. The U.S. can’t really afford to fall behind here,” said Diem Chief Executive Officer Stuart Levey. Levey said Diem’s payments network will be able to lower the cost of sending money around the world, whether it’s through a Diem-issued coin or the central-bank digital currencies that many countries are considering.Shares of Silvergate Capital jumped about 20% in extended trading after the deal’s announcement.While more straightforward to achieve, the new plans are a big comedown from the vision unveiled by the Libra Association in 2019.That June, Facebook and 27 partners announced the project to great fanfare with large ambitions. The Libra Association, as the Diem Association was then known, said it planned to launch a global stablecoin backed by a basket of currencies, including the U.S. dollar, euro and others.The blowback from world governments was fierce. Even though Facebook executives said they were just one of equal partners in the association, U.S. lawmakers said its involvement gave them concerns about protecting user data or giving the already powerful company a toehold in financial services. Some lawmakers even posited that libra could be a threat to the U.S. dollar as the world’s reserve currency.Amid the criticism, the Libra Association lost some of the members most equipped to address financial regulators, including Visa Inc., Mastercard Inc., and PayPal Holdings Inc. Eventually, the Libra Association decided to delay the launch of a multi-currency coin in favor of separate cryptocurrencies linked to individual countries’ money. The association also rebranded as Diem, but never received a necessary license from the financial regulator in its headquarters country of Switzerland.Now, Diem’s ambitions are tightening once again. The association’s members currently include Facebook, crypto-focused companies like Coinbase Global Inc., and others such as ride-hailing company Uber Technologies Inc. and commerce platform Shopify Inc. Diem said while it expected eventual approval in Switzerland, it’s withdrawing the application for its license and moving most operations to the U.S.Diem’s U.S. subsidiary plans to register as a money-services business with a division of the U.S. Treasury Department.Though Diem’s path forward might be easier that Libra’s, the association could struggle to explain how the project differs from myriad dollar-backed stablecoins that already exist, such as USD Coin.In an interview, Levey said the association believes that the way it’s implementing the coin, with built-in consumer protections and anti-crime provisions, will be appealing to regulators and companies that want to use the network.Many central banks, including those of the U.S., Europe and China, are in the process of researching or building their own digital currencies. If those come to pass, Levey said, Diem can adjust its network to accommodate them.Diem declined to say when the pilot would launch.(Updates with Silvergate share price move in the fifth paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.