|Bid||202.02 x 1100|
|Ask||202.09 x 900|
|Day's Range||199.11 - 203.33|
|52 Week Range||133.30 - 210.13|
|Beta (5Y Monthly)||0.93|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||37.99|
|Earnings Date||Jan 29, 2020|
|Forward Dividend & Yield||1.20 (0.58%)|
|Ex-Dividend Date||Nov 13, 2019|
|1y Target Est||218.54|
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- Investors continue to pour funds into passive investment products that aim to replicate the performance of benchmark indexes. They’re also increasingly keen that their money gets used to influence corporations to stop damaging the planet and improve social inclusiveness. Unfortunately, many of the products designed to achieve both objectives currently fall short on the goal of responsible investing.The shift in emphasizing environmental, social and governance issues puts pressure on the index providers to come up with benchmarks that more accurately reflect the concerns investors are attempting to express by allocating capital to ESG investment products. Currently, though, even dedicated ESG indexes have shortcomings that many investors are probably unaware of.The U.S. Vegan Climate exchange-traded fund, for example, tracks a $124 billion index created by Beyond Investing that excludes companies engaged in a laundry list of potentially harmful activities, including animal exploitation, human rights abuses and fossil fuels extraction. While the $14 million ETF’s top five holdings — Apple Inc., Microsoft Corp., Facebook Inc., Visa Inc. and Mastercard Inc. — may all meet those criteria, they’re hardly the first names that spring to mind when thinking about the words vegan or climate. And there are many other examples.BlackRock Inc.’s announcement this month that it plans to prioritize sustainability in its investment decisions highlights the issue confronting index trackers. With two-thirds of its $7.4 trillion of assets managed passively, the world’s biggest asset manager acknowledged that the bulk of its cash isn’t available to pursue those goals. Harnessing that firepower will become increasingly important if the passive industry is to meet the ESG aspirations of its growing customer base.It’s even likely to radically change the industry, and sooner than people realize. To that point, Hiro Mizuno, the chief investment officer of Japan’s $1.6 trillion Global Pension Investment Fund, says the days are over when it’s enough for passive fund managers to compete simply on providing the lowest tracking errors at the lowest cost. Now they have to add value too. “The main battlefield among our passive managers is going to be in the stewardship area.” he told the Financial Times last month. BlackRock is far from alone in shifting to a more moral investing stance. A survey of 300 institutional investors, financial advisers and fund managers that use ETFs published on Monday by Brown Brothers Harriman & Co. showed that almost three-quarters of respondents expect to increase the amount allocated to ESG investments in the coming year.European participants in the BBH survey ranked ESG-themed products as the ETF category they would most like to see more supply of, while Chinese investors ranked the sector as their second most desired area of expansion, along with more funds designed to track core indexes.Money is flooding into the sector. ESG-designated assets were the fastest-growing category of ETFs listed on Deutsche Boerse AG’s Xetra market last year, with investments more than tripling to more than 23 billion euros ($25 billion). Globally, ESG ETFs have enjoyed net inflows for 52 consecutive weeks, taking in $30 billion in the past year and garnering almost $3.4 billion in the week ended Jan. 20, according to data compiled by Bloomberg LP, which competes in selling index data to investors.There are two main routes whereby ETF providers can meet the implicit demands of clients allocating money to passively managed ESG products. The first is to use their collective muscle to prompt index providers to increase the granularity of the benchmarks used to shape asset allocations. Improving the discrimination of ESG indexes would go a long way to ensuring investors aren’t being hoodwinked into products that aren’t as green or socially savvy as they first appear.The second is trickier. Excluding companies deemed to be damaging the environment or being socially irresponsibly isn’t enough to move the needle. Engaging with the boards of those firms and using the clout of a shareholding to force them to change their ways is much more effective.But that costs money, and the success of the ETF model has been founded in large part on its ability to charge ultra-low fees. If BlackRock and its peers are serious about taking their social responsibilities more seriously, investors will have to pay for the privilege — and the sellers of index trackers will need to be honest about the increased cost of that kind of activism. Let’s hope the buyers of the products decide it’s a price worth paying to do good.To contact the author of this story: Mark Gilbert at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Melissa Pozsgay at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Mark Gilbert is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering asset management. He previously was the London bureau chief for Bloomberg News. He is also the author of "Complicit: How Greed and Collusion Made the Credit Crisis Unstoppable."For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
London-based financial technology startup Currencycloud has raised $80 million in funding from strategic investors including Visa Inc, BNP Paribas SA, SBI Group, Siam Commercial Bank and the International Finance Corp, the company said on Sunday. Existing investors including Sapphire Ventures, Notion Capital and GV, formerly Google Ventures, also participated in the round, CurrencyCloud said.
Blockchain will dramatically lower transaction costs for retailers, which paid a collective $108 billion last year.
Dutch pension giant PGGM also initiated a stake in Visa stock in the fourth quarter, and nearly tripled an investment in Microsoft stock.
The trillion-dollar market cap club expanded last week to a third U.S. company, with Google parent Alphabet Inc topping the lofty valuation mark. Apple Inc and Microsoft Corp are also worth more than $1 trillion on the stock market. Social media platform Facebook Inc appears to have the pole position.
While the market reaches new highs, Square (NYSE:SQ) stock remains in neutral. Square does trade at a high valuation. But with analysts predicting growth deceleration since August, investors have been less confident in giving this stock an even higher valuation.Source: Jonathan Weiss / Shutterstock.com Is Mr. Market right in discounting Square's future prospects? Is Square a software-as-a-service pioneer like Shopify (NYSE:SHOP)? Or is the company more like PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL) or legacy payment processors like Fiserv (NASDAQ:FISV), Visa (NYSE:V) and Mastercard (NYSE:MA)? Back in October, a Barron's article made the case for the latter. In other words, implying more downside for SQ stock.Add in increased competition, and Square does not look like a great opportunity. So, what's the verdict? Let's dive in, and see why SQ stock is most likely going to be stuck in neutral in 2020.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips What Does Fintech Consolidation Mean for SQ Stock?I've before discussed how the competition's heating up for Square. Square's merchant platform faces growing competition from established players like Fiserv. In retail peer-to-peer payments, Square's Cash App goes toe-to-toe with PayPal's Venmo. Square can still expand its merchant and consumer businesses. But customer acquisition costs could skyrocket as the market becomes crowded. * Invest in America's Most Trusted Brands With These 7 Stocks to Buy Square has its work cut out for it. Yet, the company could be an ideal bolt-on acquisition for a larger financial services company. Potential acquirers like Visa or Mastercard come to mind. InvestorPlace contributor Dana Blankenhorn expressed similar sentiments in his Dec. 30 SQ stock analysis. Blankenhorn argued that strategic buyers could pay a 33% premium to its then-trading price of $63.50 per share. In other words, $84.45 per share.Yet, this article came out before Visa's announced acquisition of Plaid. Plaid provides the back-end technology that allows fintech apps like Coinbase and Robinhood to link with your bank account. Why is this recent deal relevant to SQ stock? It could mean Square isn't the type of company deep-pocked payment companies are looking to buy.By owning the key gatekeeper between banks and fintech startups, Visa may not need to buy a company like Square to stay relevant. If businesses and customers pivot toward fintech startups in lieu of legacy payment processors, Visa can still win by owning Plaid. Visa could also leverage its ownership of Plaid to compete with Plaid's existing clients.Square was in talks to buy Plaid in 2018. Unfortunately, they couldn't get their hands on this hot asset. Doing so would've given them in edge against both startup rivals, as well as legacy payment providers. Square Needs Time to Grow Into Its ValuationSQ stock currently trades for 88.7 times estimated 2019 earnings, and 71.5 times estimated 2020 earnings. In contrast, payment rivals PayPal trades for 38 times 2019 earnings, and 33.3 times 2020 earnings. Their other main rival, Fiserv, trades for 30 times 2019 earnings, and 23.6 times projected 2020 earnings. Square's faster growth rate does justify a valuation premium. But with risks growth could decelerate, paying 71.5 forward earnings doesn't look like a smart move.Could Square grow into its valuation? It could. But even Square's high projected earnings growth of 23% implies it would take a while. In the meantime, investors may start giving Square a lower earnings multiple, sending shares to lower levels.So what's the solution? As InvestorPlace's Josh Enomoto recently wrote, the company's Square Capital lending business could move the needle long term. But investors are well aware of Square's intent to become a fintech "financial supermarket." Square could win big with this aggressive growth strategy.But looking at the competitive environment, it seems Square is sandwiched in the middle. On one hand, you have new startups that could outfox Square via innovation. On the other hand, deep-pocketed rivals to use scale to hamper Square's growth plans.That's not to say that Square will be muscled out of business. Yet, growth above expectations seems less likely. With this in mind, it seems SQ stock is more likely to come down valuation-wise than go higher thanks to expectation-exceeding growth. Bottom Line: SQ Stock Could Stay in NeutralSquare has much potential to further disrupt financial services. However, I do not believe the company's valuation premium to payment peers like PayPal is sustainable. If February's earnings call indicates further growth deceleration, SQ stock could fall to a valuation closer to that of peers.Square's move to become a fintech "financial supermarket" further cements the argument that the company is not comparable to a SaaS name like Shopify. Square deserves a growth premium to PayPal, Visa and others, but not a forward price-to-earnings ratio of 71.5.So what's the call? Stay away from SQ stock. The company could surprise come February. But chances are Square shares tread water at best in the coming year.As of this writing, Thomas Niel did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 7 Stocks on the Move Thanks to the Davos World Economic Forum * Invest in America's Most Trusted Brands With These 7 Stocks to Buy * 7 Earnings Reports to Watch Next Week The post Expect Square to Remain Stuck in Neutral appeared first on InvestorPlace.
SoFi CEO Anthony Noto said Mastercard was more willing to play ball with the fintech to leverage its naming rights to SoFi Stadium as a cardholder benefit.
Silicon Valley employers like SAP, Visa and EY open up to job candidates with autism, ADHD, dyslexia and other ‘neurodiverse’ diagnoses.
Visa (V) doesn't possess the right combination of the two key ingredients for a likely earnings beat in its upcoming report. Get prepared with the key expectations.
San Francisco startup Very Good Security plans to rapidly grow its workforce this year after getting an investment from Visa. The company, co-founded by Abdelkader and Marshall Jones, did not disclose the size of Visa’s (NYSE: V) investment, but the payments giant taking a stake in the startup is notable. Visa is eager to partner with fintechs, and in some cases, buy them outright.
(Bloomberg) -- Telecom giant Vodafone Group Plc left the Libra Association, becoming the latest company to exit the Facebook-led group trying to create a new global cryptocurrency.The Libra Association, which was finalized last October, once expected to have as many as 28 total members when the project was announced in June. It is now down to 20 following earlier departures from Visa Inc., Mastercard Inc. and others that had committed to the project but then left before the group signed an official charter.“Vodafone is no longer a member of the Libra Association,” Dante Disparte, head of policy and communication for the association, said in a statement. “Although the makeup of the Association members may change over time, the design of Libra’s governance and technology ensures the Libra payment system will remain resilient. The Association is continuing the work to achieve a safe, transparent, and consumer-friendly implementation of the Libra payment system.”The idea for Libra -- a global, digital currency intended to make cross-border money transfers as easy as sending a text message -- has faced opposition at every turn. Facebook, the world’s largest social network, first proposed the idea last June, along with a number of high-profile partners. Many of them are no longer involved, and Facebook has pledged to appease all U.S. regulators before launching the currency. It’s unclear how long that might take.Coindesk earlier reported news of Vodafone’s departure from the group.In a statement, U.K.-based Vodafone said it plans to focus on its own digital payments efforts instead. Vodafone partly owns Safaricom Plc, which operates the M-Pesa mobile-payments app in Kenya, where more people keep their money on their phones rather than in banks. The text message-based app is used by about 35 million people globally to spend, borrow and send money to friends and family.“We will continue to monitor the development of the Libra Association and do not rule out the possibility of future co-operation,” Vodafone spokesman Steve Shepperson-Smith said.\--With assistance from Jenny Surane and Scott Moritz.To contact the reporter on this story: Kurt Wagner in San Francisco at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org, Robin AjelloFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
The credit-card giant’s stock rises 1.5% in Tuesday trading and is on pace for its ninth straight gain and another all-time high.
(Bloomberg) -- As Visa Inc., Mastercard Inc. and American Express Co. prepare to enter China for the first time, one of their biggest competitive threats will come from a company that doesn’t issue credit cards.Jack Ma’s Ant Financial, already the biggest player in China’s $27 trillion payments market, is leveraging its ubiquitous Alipay mobile app to mount a rapid expansion into consumer lending.Instead of issuing cards, Ant allows customers to borrow with a few taps on their smartphones. The loans are wildly popular among China’s army of mobile-savvy shoppers, who often lack formal credit histories but generate enough financial data via Alipay for Ant to make informed decisions on whether they’ll default. The company’s outstanding consumer loans may swell to nearly 2 trillion yuan ($290 billion) by 2021, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc. analysts, more than triple the level two years ago.“The consumer loans business has been growing at breakneck speed, but there are so many untapped users,” Huang Hao, president of Ant’s digital finance operations, said in a phone interview outlining the company’s strategy.Ant’s push into China’s 10 trillion yuan market for short-term consumer loans will make it an even more formidable challenger to U.S. card companies, which are counting on the world’s second-largest economy as a source of long-term growth.Many Chinese consumers and businesses are ditching credit cards as Ant and its main competitor Tencent Holdings Ltd. make app-based spending, borrowing and investing increasingly user-friendly. In a Nielsen survey of more than 3,000 Chinese people born after 1990, nearly 61% said they use online consumer credit while only 45.5% had a credit card.“For credit card companies coming to China, the biggest challenge is how to attract people,” said Zennon Kapron, managing director of Singapore-based consulting firm Kapronasia. “A lot of Chinese millennials are digital first, used to using Alipay as their first platform for payments, loans and wealth management.”The card giants appear to be moving forward with their China plans despite the headwinds. AmEx’s application to start a bank card clearing business has been accepted by the country’s central bank, while Mastercard has called China a “vital” market and Visa has said it’s working closely with regulators for a license.As part of its phase-one trade agreement with the U.S., China said it won’t take longer than 90 days to consider applications from providers of electronic-payments services. Regulators are opening the industry to foreign competition amid an unprecedented push to give international firms access to the country’s financial sector.Read more: Visa, Mastercard, AmEx Win Easier Access to China MarketIn response to questions from Bloomberg on the threat posed by Ant, Visa said it sees significant potential to support the growth and evolution of digital payments in China and is approaching the market with a long-term focus. Mastercard said it would continue to work with regulators to advance its application and is committed for the long haul. AmEx declined to comment.Ant, an affiliate of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. that’s widely expected to pursue an initial public offering in coming years, started its consumer-credit business in 2015. Its loans tend to be small: half the users of Ant’s Huabei (translation: “just spend”) service borrow less than $290 and usually pay it back within months.The Hangzhou-based company, which declined to disclose the value of its outstanding loans, keeps delinquencies in check by tapping into a trove of data amassed by Alipay and Alibaba.Many customers have been using the payments and e-commerce platforms for years -- handing over details from ID cards to addresses and spending habits. Once Ant extends a loan, it can track how the money is spent via Alipay. The result is a bad-debt ratio stands at about 1%, below the 1.24% national average for credit cards.Read more: China’s Gen Z, With Little Income, Gets Hooked on Easy CreditAnt keeps some of the loans on its own balance sheet, charging interest rates that range from about 5% to 18%, according to Huang. But most are passed on for a fee to banks and other financial institutions.“We’re set to continue to work with more banks and finance companies,” Huang said. “We are, at the end of the day, a platform.”The risk for Visa, Mastercard and AmEx is that a swathe of Chinese consumers and businesses will view credit cards as obsolete. About 60% of borrowers on Ant’s Huabei platform don’t have one, and many smaller merchants don’t accept cards because they find it’s cheaper and easier to use Alipay or Tencent’s WePay. The former, with more than 900 million users, is Alibaba’s preferred payments provider.“The competitive landscape is full of local players,” said Hang Qian, a partner at Oliver Wyman, a consultancy. “The key challenges are how to promote small merchants to accept credit cards and how to get e-wallet users to switch.”\--With assistance from Alfred Liu.To contact the reporter on this story: Lulu Yilun Chen in Hong Kong at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael Patterson at firstname.lastname@example.org, Jodi SchneiderFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Africa-focused fintech firm Flutterwave on Tuesday announced a $35 million fundraising round and partnerships with WorldPay and Visa as it targets expansion in northern and Francophone Africa. The startup, founded in 2016 by Nigerians and headquartered in San Francisco, specialises in individual and consumer transfers -- one of several fintech firms aiming to facilitate and capitalise on Africa's booming payments market. As part of the deal, Flutterwave will become the African payment provider for Worldpay's clients worldwide, making the company the latest African fintech firm to attract global cash and big-name partnerships.
TORONTO , Jan. 20, 2020 /CNW/ - Visa (NYSE:V) and a group of key industry organizations today announced Digital Transformations of Small and Medium Size Businesses: The Future of Commerce, a look at the opportunities and challenges Canadian small and medium size business (SMB) owners face in an increasingly digital world. Developed with leading SMB advocates, the report also offers actionable tips for technology and digital upgrades that business owners can easily implement to grow their businesses. "As consumer expectations are evolving, it is critical that small and medium size businesses evolve with them," said Brian Weiner , vice president, head of product, Visa Canada.
Analysts expect earnings at S&P 500 companies to drop 0.8% in the fourth quarter, but forecast a 5.8% rise in the first quarter of 2020, according to Refinitiv IBES data. Billionaire David Tepper, who founded hedge fund Appaloosa Management, told CNBC that he remains bullish on U.S. equities. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.17% to end at 29,348.1 points, while the S&P 500 gained 0.39% to 3,329.62.