SNAP - Snap Inc.

NYSE - Nasdaq Real Time Price. Currency in USD
14.48
+0.01 (+0.03%)
As of 11:32AM EST. Market open.
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Previous Close14.47
Open14.42
Bid14.44 x 3000
Ask14.45 x 1100
Day's Range14.35 - 14.59
52 Week Range4.82 - 18.36
Volume4,493,686
Avg. Volume27,117,455
Market Cap20.391B
Beta (3Y Monthly)1.09
PE Ratio (TTM)N/A
EPS (TTM)-0.72
Earnings DateFeb 3, 2020 - Feb 7, 2020
Forward Dividend & YieldN/A (N/A)
Ex-Dividend DateN/A
1y Target Est17.86
  • Snapchat Founder’s Sister Launches Audio Erotica Site
    Bloomberg

    Snapchat Founder’s Sister Launches Audio Erotica Site

    (Bloomberg) -- Caroline Spiegel isn’t afraid to talk about sex.The 22 year-old entrepreneur and younger sister of Snap Inc. founder Evan Spiegel, has founded a startup called Quinn, a website for audio erotica.Spiegel hopes Quinn, which is launching officially on Thursday, will become the go-to place for what she calls “the internet’s best-kept secret.” Quinn packages erotic stories and “guided masturbations” behind an interface as polished and minimalistic as any other startup geared toward Millennials, a stark difference from the pop-ups and animated ads often associated with sites like PornHub. In fact, there are no pictures or videos at all.“Audio porn really gets at the sort of non-obvious intangible parts of sex that visual porn just doesn’t get at it in the same way,” Spiegel said.Quinn is the latest addition to a growing adult podcast market. In the last five years, venture capital funds have plowed $1.6 billion into audio-tech companies, according to PitchBook, a category that includes hardware and software for the music and podcast industry. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Interactive Advertising Bureau, the podcasting industry is expected to generate $679 million in revenue this year.And while the numbers don’t break out adult content from general podcasts, it’s clear that the money-generating power and timeless popularity of romance novels has combined with the success of audio startups like Gimlet Media and Anchor to help spur interest in audio erotica.One of the early leaders is Dipsea, an app-based platform for short-form erotic audio stories that has raised $5.5 million from Bedrock and Thrive Capital. A subscription service, Dipsea costs $5.99 a month and now ranks in the top 100 grossing entertainment apps, according to researcher App Annie. Other competitors include Bawdy Storytelling, a podcast featuring long form stories and Literotica, a site mostly known for its written stories, but which also hosts audio content.During her junior year at Stanford University, Spiegel took time off to deal with an eating disorder. As she recovered and rediscovered her sexuality, she said she had a realization that fantasy and arousal  “is easier for some people,” men specifically. So she set out to create a product for women and after doing some research settled on audio erotica.The genre isn’t necessarily new. But while there is clearly demand, it has struggled to find the right distribution method. Free audio erotica of varying quality is available on Reddit, and Tumblr once had a robust library before the social media site banned pornographic content late last year.Spiegel saw an opening. Quinn aims to host content, written and uploaded by voice-actors or writers, on a curated, social media-style platform. The site offers users three ways of participating: telling their stories, listening to others’ stories or reading erotic tales. Spiegel said she wants Quinn to not be too tightly curated or have “one voice,” so that everyone can find content that appeals to them. “We want to be a bazillion voices.”To moderate the submissions, Quinn will have “really accurate tagging” so that listeners know what to expect from a story. The site does have a few strict rules, including that stories don’t involve minors or non-consensual acts, and it removes posts that don’t comply. The startup is still considering how it will make money, “because people are not prepared to pay for porn,” Spiegel said. Creators that post content to Quinn can make money by receiving tips from users.In designing the app, Spiegel was conscious of how women are marketed to. “I feel like I'm always kind of being yelled at by products to Be Better! Prettier! Skinnier! More Athletic!” she said. One of the first tenets of marketing is to make a product aspirational, Spiegel said. “But Quinn is kind of like, no thanks to that,” she said. “We’re just trying to make you feel better about who you are already.”Comedian and Quinn-user Remy Kassimir says video porn never appealed to her, since instead of erotic emotions, she’d feel a “nervous overdrive,” comparing herself to the cookie-cutter body types of many women in the videos. Audio erotica presents an alternative for people, especially women, to more comfortably explore their sexuality, she said.Spiegel and her team also discovered, as the site went through beta testing, that almost half of the users were men. This surprise was counter to their initial theory that women were more drawn to audio erotica and men were more visual.On a Monday morning a few weeks before Quinn’s official launch, Spiegel gathered the five-member team for a meeting at the company’s Brooklyn, New York, office. They congregated with laptops around a large wooden dining room table, with a bowl of Quinn-branded condoms as a centerpiece. The sunny loft space, with an industrial style kitchen and open floor plan, looks like any other startup office. But details, like a neon sign reading “XXX DVD Video” hanging on the exposed brick wall, and a faded Playboy from 1972 on the counter, wink at Quinn’s mission.Spiegel declined to name investors in Quinn or say how much the startup has raised though she told Tech Crunch earlier this year that the site had brought in less than $1 million in outside capital.Pitching a sex-tech product presents unique challenges, especially for female founders. “Obviously men are uncomfortable” during a graphic pitch with precise language, Spiegel said. “But they do take my meetings.”Spiegel said audio erotica is popular because it evokes a sense of mystery and sensuality that video doesn’t.“Everyone’s like, ‘Oh VR porn is the future and the more graphic, the more in-your-face kind of porn the better,’” Spiegel said. “Quinn is kind of a contrarian take. Human desire is more complicated and people want content they can really relate to, truly connect with.”To contact the author of this story: Kiley Roache in New York at kroache@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Molly Schuetz at mschuetz9@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Venmo: Its Business Model and Competition
    Investopedia

    Venmo: Its Business Model and Competition

    Here is an in-depth look at the increasingly popular digital payment app Venmo. It's changing the way people exchange money.

  • Snap launches Spectacles 3 to mixed reviews
    American City Business Journals

    Snap launches Spectacles 3 to mixed reviews

    Snap will reduce its exposure on the latest iteration of its video sunglasses, with a limited run aimed at influencers.

  • Financial Times

    Why dual-class shares deserve consideration

    One share, one vote has long been a pillar of corporate governance in the UK. A big part of London’s appeal has been in offering a “gold standard” when it comes to listings. about relaxing its position on the use of dual-class share structures will not go down well in governance circles.

  • As the Snapchat User Base Ages, Irrelevancy Will Hound SNAP Stock
    InvestorPlace

    As the Snapchat User Base Ages, Irrelevancy Will Hound SNAP Stock

    For those who want to gamble on social media firm Snap (NYSE:SNAP), I can appreciate where they're coming from. Since the start of January, the SNAP stock price has jumped nearly 162%. That easily trumps the year-to-date performances of rivals Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Twitter (NYSE:TWTR). Still, I'd consider pocketing some profits if you're in the black.Source: bangoland / Shutterstock.com As impressive as the lift in Snapchat stock is, the bullish case is clearly delineated as a first-half, second-half story. Essentially, shares are almost dead-even since the beginning of July. Thus, all of the positives up to this point are sitting in the rear-view mirror.Further, the stock price has been unable to break out of a defined bearish trend channel that started in late July. And since the beginning of August, shares are down double digits.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading TipsOf course, technical sentiment can shift on a dime. That was the case earlier this year when it appeared that Snapchat stock was headed toward a permanent exit. Still, that volatility cuts both ways. Additionally, SNAP has failed to demonstrate longer-term credibility. * 7 Stocks to Sell Before They Roll Over I'm skeptical that it can. A major attraction point for Snapchat stock is that the underlying company resonates strongly with youth. However, as our own Chris Markoch pointed out, Snapchat's user base is starting to skew older. Markoch then asks:Will they stop using the platform? If they continue to use the platform, how will the platform have to evolve to capture disposable dollars in a similar way that filters do today?And even if these users stop using the platform, when it comes to technology the question is always, what's next?I'll answer the last question from an investment standpoint: likely a selloff. Cruel Environment Impacting the SNAP Stock PriceI don't golf, but my friends who do always tell me that the sport is the cruelest. At one moment, you can be on top of the world. In the next, you're shanking your shots.In some ways, social media is the internet's equivalent of golf. On paper, Snapchat stock has the right stuff. They captured youth engagement, which is the most ideal demographic. Although young people are fickle, they're the most culturally relevant. Plus, they grow up to be self-sustaining consumers.Armed with such assets, you'd expect SNAP stock to move consistently higher. But one of the reasons why shares are so volatile is that user gains in social media are difficult, if not impossible to come by after passing a certain threshold.According to the Pew Research Center, social media use among adults started to peak in the middle of this decade. Specifically, very few platforms have demonstrated gains in adult usage. Instagram is a rare exception, although it too has seen a waning growth rate.Usage-wise, the king of all social media, Facebook, has been flat since 2016. If headwinds are stymieing the biggest players, confidence can't be too high for SNAP stock.Another cruel factor working against Snapchat stock is daily usage stats. At first glance, mentioning this point is confusing: among SNAP's user base, 61% work the platform daily. That's a high figure, which indicates that young Americans love Snapchat.But to Markoch's inquiry, what happens when they grow older? Because the one thing that young people have a lot of is personal time. However, when they enter the real world - career, buying a home, starting a family - that free time evaporates quickly.Thus, SNAP's daily usage is a deceptively bearish indicator. Narrow Focus Hurts Snapchat StockFinally, one of the biggest pressure points for the SNAP stock price is the social media firm's narrow focus. Outside of goofing off with friends and acquaintances, there's not much going on for Snapchat.The most vital component of Facebook is its scalable relevance. At each stage in life, Facebook offers something of value. For instance, college graduates can use Facebook to network with others at a time when their own professional credentials are limited.On the other hand, people in the mid-career demographic could use the platform to advertise a new business venture. Or, the politically motivated could get on FB to spark a meaningful grassroots campaign. And of course, older folks can use Facebook to find long-lost friends.Snapchat? I guess you can use it to send rainbow puke filters to your buddies. The thing is, almost everyone grows out of their juvenile phase. That Snapchat doesn't offer utility beyond anyone older than a teenager is perhaps the biggest risk to SNAP stock.As of this writing, Josh Enomoto did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 7 Stocks to Sell Before They Roll Over * 5 Beaten-Up Stocks to Buy That Could Be Saved By An Acquisition * 4 Startup Stocks Getting Smashed The post As the Snapchat User Base Ages, Irrelevancy Will Hound SNAP Stock appeared first on InvestorPlace.

  • Wedgewood Bearish On Facebook, Bullish on Apple and Google
    Insider Monkey

    Wedgewood Bearish On Facebook, Bullish on Apple and Google

    Wedgewood Partners, a St. Louis, Missouri-based investment firm, released its 2019 Q3 investor letter – you can download a copy here. Wedgewood Partners managed a 0.39% return for the quarter. Meanwhile, the benchmark Russell 1000 Growth Index and the S&P 500 Index gained 1.49% and 1.87%, respectively. Wedgewood offered a bearish take on social media giant, Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), in its latest letter to investors: "Facebook […]

  • Financial Times

    Who are the NextGen? A portrait in data

    The 1bn 16-24 year olds currently filtering out into the adult world have grown up during a period of immense cultural, demographic, political and technological change. In the US, the NextGen — those aged under 25 — is the most diverse generation ever. Almost half of the NextGen in the US are non-white, up from 39 per cent of millennials, 30 per cent of Gen X and 18 per cent of baby boomers.

  • Uber Shares Under Pressure: What is an IPO Lock-Up Period?
    Zacks

    Uber Shares Under Pressure: What is an IPO Lock-Up Period?

    Shares of Uber Technologies (UBER) are falling, hitting a new record low after its IPO lock-up period expired on Wednesday.

  • 4 Highly-Ranked Cheap Stocks Trading Under $10 to Buy Right Now
    Zacks

    4 Highly-Ranked Cheap Stocks Trading Under $10 to Buy Right Now

    Today we highlighted 4 'cheap' stocks that are currently trading for under $10 per share that also sport a Zacks Rank 2 (Buy) or better that investors might want to consider buying right now...

  • Benzinga

    Analyst: Snap, Twitter Off To Strong Starts In Q4

    Most investors have to wait until the end of a quarter to get feedback on how a company performed during the quarter. However, internet stock investors can get some helpful hints about usage and download ...

  • Benzinga

    15 Stocks With A High Current Ratio

    Current ratio is a popular way for investors to assess the health of a stock’s balance sheet. Current ratio is a measure of a company’s ability to pay its current liabilities and obligations due within ...

  • What's Next for Surging Facebook & Apple Stock After Solid Earnings?
    Zacks

    What's Next for Surging Facebook & Apple Stock After Solid Earnings?

    Welcome to the latest episode of the Full-Court Finance podcast from Zacks Investment Research where Associate Stock Strategist Ben Rains breaks down what's next for Facebook and Apple stock...

  • 4 Consumer Technology Stocks to Buy Now
    InvestorPlace

    4 Consumer Technology Stocks to Buy Now

    U.S. equities are rallying to fresh record highs on Monday thanks, yet again, to positive China trade headlines right before the open. The focus is shifting from whether a deal actually gets done -- as well as specifics around thorny issues like intellectual property protection -- to where President Donald Trump would like to get the deal signed. Iowa has been mentioned as a candidate.This, of course, is like pure sugar to the market bulls, whipping them into a mania. With the Federal Reserve's three recent interest rate cuts just starting to percolate into the economy, the removal of the drag from trade tensions could kick the economy back into gear. * 7 Retail Stocks to Avoid for the Holidays As a result, these four consumer-oriented technology stocks are rallying and look good for new money:InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips Consumer Tech Stocks to Buy: Facebook (FB)Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) shares are emerging from a multimonth consolidation range to return to highs not seen since late July. A push back towards the prior high near $210 would be worth a 6% gain from here and potentially mark the end of a sideways range going back to the summer of 2018.The company is expected to next report results around Jan. 29 after the close. Analysts are looking for earnings of $2.47 per share on revenues of $20.1 billion. On Halloween, the company reported better-than-expected third quarter results thanks to ongoing success with Instagram. Snap (SNAP)Snapchat parent Snap (NYSE:SNAP) is enjoying a share price move back above its 50-day moving average, setting up a run to its prior high near $18.50 which would be worth a gain of nearly 20% from here. This traces out an epic head-and-shoulders reversal pattern that started in late 2017 and traces a possible price target of as high as $30, which would be a new post-IPO high. * These 7 Stocks to Buy Were Big Winners This Earnings Season The company is expected to next report around Feb. 4, with analysts looking for earnings of a penny per share on revenues of $560.9 million. HP (HPQ)HP (NYSE:HPQ) shares are also emerging back above their 50-day moving average, setting up a run at the 200-day average that was only briefly crossed back in July. Shares have been in a persistent downtrend pattern since late 2018, but with Black Friday approaching and the company attracting attention for its well-designed Envy computer models, a sustained rebound appears to be in order.The company is expected to next report results around Nov. 27 after the close. Analysts are looking for earnings of 58 cents per share on revenues of $15.3 billion. GoPro (GPRO)GoPro (NASDAQ:GPRO) shares are rallying back above their 50-day moving average, setting up a run at the 200-day average that proved intractable back in late September. Shares have gone nowhere fast after the last four years as the action camera marketplace died down. But new initiatives like 360-degree photography are generating fresh excitement. * These 7 Stocks to Buy Were Big Winners This Earnings Season The company will next report results on Nov. 7 after the close. Analysts are looking for a loss of 48 cents per share on revenues of $126.4 million.As of this writing, William Roth did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * These 7 Stocks to Buy Were Big Winners This Earnings Season * 5 Cheap Stocks Welcoming Insider Buying * 7 Earnings Reports to Watch Next Week The post 4 Consumer Technology Stocks to Buy Now appeared first on InvestorPlace.

  • Snap Chief Evan Spiegel says controversial redesign is 'starting to pay off'
    American City Business Journals

    Snap Chief Evan Spiegel says controversial redesign is 'starting to pay off'

    CEO Evan Spiegel expressed few regrets about the controversial update to his company's signature app in a recent interview.

  • GuruFocus.com

    5 Large-Cap Stocks Are Up More Than 100% This Year

    The market’s hottest stocks this year have mostly been youngish companies with little, if any, profit history Continue reading...

  • The internet was born 50 years ago — this timeline tracks the rise of tech giants like Microsoft, Apple and Amazon
    MarketWatch

    The internet was born 50 years ago — this timeline tracks the rise of tech giants like Microsoft, Apple and Amazon

    CORRECTION: A previous version of the graphic in this story misaligned the dates with some of the milestones for Google, Facebook and Twitter. On Oct. 29, 1969, a UCLA computer science professor and a graduate student sent the first digital transmission from their computer to another one at the Stanford Research Institute.

  • Stock market news: November 1, 2019
    Yahoo Finance

    Stock market news: November 1, 2019

    U.S. stocks jumped Friday after the October jobs report came in well above consensus expectations. Treasury yields climbed and gold prices fell, as investors piled into risk assets.

  • Via Transportation CEO Ramot Sees Big Money in Buses: STYT
    Bloomberg

    Via Transportation CEO Ramot Sees Big Money in Buses: STYT

    (Bloomberg) -- Bloomberg News is hosting the Sooner Than You Think conference in New York, exploring what’s next in technology, Wednesday at The Weylin in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Speakers are discussing topics such as how companies can restore trust in the tech sector; how new frontiers like AI create new obligations for business and governments; the best ways to protect your data in the age of cybersecurity attacks; the antitrust probes of Big Tech and more.Watch LIVE. All times are local New York.Via Sees Big Money in Buses (5:45 p.m.)Daniel Ramot, chief executive officer of ride-sharing company Via Transportation, Inc., sees big money in buses.New York-based Via is often characterized as a smaller competitor to Uber Technologies Inc. and Lyft Inc. But Ramot sees those companies as disrupting the cab and limo market, while Via is focused on public transportation. In fact, 95% of Via rides are shared, he said. Via also sells software to public transportation systems to improve efficiency, with nearly 100 partners worldwide.Ramot puts the public mobility market -- which includes city buses, school buses, university shuttles and similar types of transportation -- at a half-trillion-dollar industry, which he sees as a big opportunity, larger than the taxi and ride-hailing space.And environmental concerns will boost demand for these options.“There’s always going to be private cars, people riding around by themselves,” he said. “But my hope is that increasingly we will look at people riding around by themselves in a car a little bit the way we might think about someone walking into a kindergarten and smoking.”Compass Says It’s Not Like WeWork (5:23 p.m.)The chief executive officer of SoftBank-backed real estate brokerage Compass said his company had already moved away from a strategy of rapid growth before WeWork’s scuttled initial public offering.Compass has raised $1.5 billion in venture capital, and like WeWork, it tapped SoftBank Group Corp.’s Vision Fund. Skeptics in the real estate industry say the brokerage lacks a disruptive technology or business model, and has relied on deep coffers of venture funding to buy growth.But Compass had stopped expanding into new geographic areas by the beginning of this year, CEO Robert Reffkin said. The company is already profitable in many markets and is under no pressure to go public, he added.Reffkin enumerated other advantages. He said the company’s strategy of treating real estate agents as its primary customers would help recruiting efforts in the event of a recession. And unlike video-streaming sites or car-hailing services, Compass hasn’t attracted imitators.“Seven years in, there hasn’t been one copycat,” he said.California Privacy Law Does More Harm Than Good, Industry Executives Say (4:00 p.m.)California’s data privacy law does more harm than good for consumer privacy, said Michael Beckerman, president and chief executive officer of the Internet Association, and Mignon Clyburn, former commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission.The first data privacy law in the country takes effect Jan. 1, 2020, but the representative from the industry group that represents big technology and the former federal official argued the California Consumer Privacy Act needs to be replaced with a federal law. They worry that other states will follow California’s lead and pass their own regulations, creating a possible patchwork of varying standards across the country.Companies will struggle to comply with multiple laws, Beckerman said.“They got so much wrong, and what they did do will make people less private,” he said. “It makes no sense that one state can set the rules, leaving the rest of the country to pivot.”Clyburn agreed, but said a federal law to pre-empt state regulations is unlikely until after the 2020 presidential election.Former DHS Adviser Says Trump Ukraine Server Allegation ‘Completely Debunked’ (3:30 p.m.)Tom Bossert, a former Homeland Security adviser to President Donald Trump, called the “conspiracy theory” that Trump has pursued, in which there is a Democratic National Committee server in Ukraine, has been “completely debunked.”Bossert said he expects more countries to get involved in attempting to influence the next U.S presidential election. “Buckle up, because it’s about to get started in a bigger and larger scale, in my view,” said Bossert, who now works as the chief strategy officer at Trinity Cyber. “The trend that we will see when we look back on this 2020 election is the entrance of China, Iran, North Korea, maybe 10 or 12 nation-state actors that are highly sophisticated.”Brittany Kaiser, co-founder of the Digital Asset Trade Association, said she’s not sure “that we’ve really learned enough about all of the problems from 2016. Facebook’s policy of allowing political campaigns to lie in campaign ads could allow them to conduct voter suppression, she said. “We don’t actually have oversight over what these campaigns are saying.”Yasmin Green, director of research and development at Jigsaw, warned that those looking to influence elections have become more skilled. “Defenses are better and the threat is more sophisticated,” Green said. “So looking to 2020 the question mark for me is, are we going to say domestic disinformation doesn’t really feel like on par with state sponsored, cross border election meddling.”Simon Ventures Head Says WeWork Shows ‘Inconsistent’ Valuations (3:30pm)WeWork, the work-sharing real-estate startup, created a “ highly dsyfunctional” capital structure as it moved toward an initial public offering, said Natalie Hwang, managing director and head of Simon Ventures, the venture capital arm of Simon Property Group, Inc., the largest shopping mall and retail center owner in the U.S. Simon Ventures passed on the opportunity to invest in WeWork a few years ago. “In the case of WeWork, the public markets ultimately disagreed with private company valuations and I would expect for companies to be valued at increasingly inconsistent fashion.”WeWork was valued at as much as $47 billion before its IPO collapsed and the company’s value fell to an estimated $8 billion in a bailout plan. Jason Illian, managing Director of Koch Disruptive Technologies, the venture and growth arm of Koch Industries, Inc. said WeWork won’t be the last example of a private company’s valuation being overhyped.Foursquare Chief Says GDPR Needs to Better Protect Location Data (2:30 p.m.)Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation doesn’t go far enough to protect consumers from abuse of their location data, Foursquare Labs Inc. Chief Executive Officer Jeff Glueck said.Glueck said regulators should enact laws to protect consumers’ location data, and make sure they consent to what they share. Glueck said his company supports the European privacy law, but it needs to go further, and the U.S. needs a national privacy law as well.“There is no rule today about how to use location data or what is informed consent,” he said. “Consumers should not be judged to have consented to anything because of a 200-page ‘Terms and Conditions.’”Glueck, in effect, is calling for regulation on his own company. Foursquare, which began as a social-media app letting a user broadcast their location to friends, now builds location-data systems for other companies including Uber Technologies Inc. and Airbnb Inc.Companies should be legally responsible to use consumer’s real-time location data in the user’s best interest, similar to an accountant’s fiduciary duty. Regulations should ensure “competition can continue but with a high ethical bar,” he said.Google Rival DuckDuckGo Makes ‘Ton of Money’ From Private Search Engine (1 p.m.)DuckDuckGo, a privacy-focused search engine provider, makes “a ton of money” without resorting to the personalized, targeted advertising that Google uses, according to Megan Gray, the company’s top lawyer and policy chief.There are many reasons for transferring personal information between companies, but with online search it doesn’t need to be that way, Gray said during a discussion about privacy-focused product design. After you search for a little black dress and then lipstick, companies don’t need to follow you around the web with similar ads, she added.“That’s only what you see. There’s a lot more behind the curtain in terms of how you are being categorized by the searches you have done,” Gray said.Gray and other speakers called for an enforceable “Do Not Track” law in the U.S. that would help people easily prevent technology and digital-advertising companies from collecting personal data and following users around the web.Smartphone settings could have a simple “don’t track me” setting, Gray explained. There are technical ways to do some of this already, but an enforcement mechanism is needed, she said.The idea that a Do Not Track law would destroy the online ad industry is “a bit of a bluff,” said Elizabeth Zalman, chief executive officer of strongDM, which makes software for securely managing databases and computer servers.Andrew Farah, CEO of startup Density, said everyone would have to activate such a Do Not Track setting for the digital ad business to be really damaged.The panel ended with a question about Silicon Valley and whether there are the right incentives in place for entrepreneurs to think about privacy and do the right thing when they’re starting companies.“Do you want me to get to raise my next round of funding?” Zalman said, prompting laughter from the crowd. Leaders of tech startups should treat data records as real humans and lock down that information, she added. “I don’t know if it’s necessarily baked into the venture capital route.”WeWork’s Failed IPO Was a Case of Corporate Greed, Former Snap Exec Khan Says (12:45p.m.)WeWork’s aborted initial public offering is a case of “corporate greed,” said Imran Khan, co-founder and chief executive officer of e-commerce company Verishop. Khan was previously involved in high-profile public offerings, as chief strategy officer at Snap Inc. and as a managing director at Credit Suisse Group AG, where he helped internet companies, including Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, list on the stock market.Khan said that whenever an investor gives someone money, they are giving trust, and the recipient has a responsibility to live by that trust.“At WeWork we saw the gross negligence of this trust,” Khan said. It was a degree of irresponsibility he hadn’t seen since 1999 or 2000, he added.We Co. was valued at $47 billion at its peak earlier this year, but that dropped to only about $8 billion as part of the aborted IPO and bail-out plan.Generally, Khan said that while the private market in many cases results in inflated valuations, he can see why investors like it. “You don’t have to worry about day to day volatility,” he said.“If you want to build a business for the long term, to be honest with you it’s difficult to do that in the public market these days,” Khan said. “I think it’s getting more and more challenging.”Earlier this year, Khan launched Verishop, which sells lifestyle products which sells a curated offering ranging from clothing to sustainable household items and non-toxic toys.Ohio AG Wonders if Current Antitrust Law is Sufficient For Big Tech (12:30 p.m.)Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost questioned whether existing antitrust law is sufficient to police Big Tech. “What is the right way to regulate or limit, or separate the power that is being gathered?” Yost said. “I’m not entirely sure that the antitrust jurisprudence we have is adequate.”Yost described three historic phases of power accumulation: First governments, which were split up into separate branches; then, old economic monopolies, which the federal government broke up; and now, large technology platforms. “Today there’s this third wave of power,” he said. “Power is always antithetical to individual freedom.”Yost said he is still trying to frame questions about how to restrain that power. He didn’t offer pointed solutions.Two groups of state attorneys general are investigating Facebook Inc. and Google for abuses of power. Those cases are in their early stages. The attorneys general haven’t publicly articulated a clear legal case against these tech giants and Yost did not offer one Wednesday.Instead, he asked whether the existing laws were sufficient to deal with the tech giants’ newfound power. “The piece that is proceeding under traditional antitrust principles is probably distinguished by fact patterns and business models of each case. The overall debate question that I’m posing is, is this really about the aggregation of power?” he said. “There’s been tremendous change driven by these big tech platforms -- there’s almost nothing that hasn’t been touched in our lives and impacted, in many, many ways for the better.”Yost indicated that he was taking a measured approach. “I’m not with the pitchfork and torch crowd, OK?. But we do need to think about the potential outcomes here, and are there things that we want guardrails from?”Kerry Washington Talks About Changing the Narrative in Hollywood (12:00 p.m.)Kerry Washington is best known as Olivia Pope, the star of the ABC drama “Scandal.” But now she is starring in a new film called “American Son” on Netflix, and is hoping its message starts a conversation. In the film, which debuts Friday, she looks for her missing son at a police precinct. It’s a timely show in light of several police killings of black Americans. “Whether you’re a man or woman, black or white, it makes you think,” she said. “People who wouldn’t normally watch this are watching this and learning something.”Washington shared the stage with Pilar Savone, who produced “Django Unchained” and heads development for Washington’s production company, Simpson Street. Savone said the film was originally a play. Now that it’s on Netflix, it can reach a much larger audience.“It’s such an important story for people to see and not everyone has access to Broadway,” Savone said.Both women said Hollywood is starting to think more about hiring women and minorities -- in front of the camera and behind it. When Simpson Street shoots a pilot, “we want to make sure our candidate pool is diverse,” Washington said.Washington has also invested in The Wing, a woman-focused co-working space. She described the startup as “a sisterhood” where women are “having a lot of conversations on a lot of levels.” She also gave out her phone number, saying it would help her fans connect with her on Community.com, a communications startup. Community, she said, “allows me to engage more with fans on one-to-one basis” and “have a real conversation.”Washington said she was going to knock on doors this weekend in Michigan and Virginia to encourage people to register to vote. Asked who she’s backing in the presidential race, she demurred. “My candidate is the American people,” she said.Shopify CEO Lutke Says He’s Helping Others Compete With Amazon (11:19 a.m.)Shopify Inc. Chief Executive Officer Tobi Lutke said the Canadian e-commerce company isn’t competing with Amazon.com Inc., but helping other people do so. “Amazon wants to be an empire,” he said. “At Shopify, we are arming the rebels.” Lutke said he didn’t think the economy would be healthy if there were five mega-corporations employing everyone, and that the world needs millions of businesses to employ millions of people.Shopify recently announced it had reached 1 million merchants using its platform around the world.The Ottawa-based company is spending $1 billion dollars to set up a network of fulfillment centers in the U.S. to help merchants using its platforms deliver products. The company processes millions of individual sales by hundreds of thousands of merchants each year, and could potentially pool shipments from different online stores together. “If you put a lot of lights together you end up with a sun,” said Lutke.“What will that do for margins? Well, it’s going to be expensive,” Lutke said of the 10-figure investment. He added that Shopify is “a growth investment.”Shopify is one of Canada’s best performing stocks, having gained about 130% this year as investors reward the company’s fast growing sales. But the company reported an unexpected quarterly loss earlier this week due to higher spending as it expands its customer network and building out the fulfillment centers.Two Sigma’s David Siegel Talks About the New Rules For Tech (10:40 a.m.)David Siegel, co-founder of the Two Sigma Investments hedge fund, said if giant tech companies began self-regulation as concerns over privacy mount it might prevent the government from enacting more severe controls.“The industry participants themselves understand what’s possible and what isn’t possible better than maybe a government agency would,” Siegel said. “If the industry could get together and work collaboratively to set rules of the road, then maybe we will all be happier.”Siegel, who has been outspoken about the benefits and dangers associated with artificial intelligence, said industries like finance and medicine had very little oversight in their early days, and that didn’t lead to good outcomes. He finds it hard to understand why tech leaders would think that their industry would work perfectly without regulations.“I think having regulation in finance is a good thing,” Siegel said. “So I’ve never seen regulation as being a particularly big deal.”Siegel pointed out the trade-offs that come with regulations. Some people want privacy, but if the control of personal data is absolute, that might lead to unintended consequences, like making it harder for authorities to solve criminal activity.“So we might be willing to have a great level of abuse in our society, maybe it would lead to more violence, maybe it will lead to more financial fraud but maybe you’re all ok with that trade-off because you value privacy so much,” he said. “Or maybe you’re not.”New York-based Two Sigma, a quantitative hedge fund firm that deploys machine learning in its strategies, had $60 billion in assets in August.One of Tech’s Biggest Critics Takes on The Role of Technology in Society (9:45 a.m.)Tristan Harris is a former Google employee who has turned into one of the highest-profile critics of Big Tech. His job at Alphabet Inc.’s Google was to make sure ethics were taken into account when new products were designed, but he left years ago to try and push that mission from the outside. Harris, who is the co-founder and executive director at the Center for Humane Technology, says human minds are no match for the sophisticated attention-grabbing algorithms built by Facebook Inc., YouTube and Twitter Inc. and that these companies’ entire business models need to change. “We’re all trapped inside this system,” Harris said.As long as the goal of these companies is to maximize our time spent on their platforms so they can sell more ads, misinformation, outrage and conspiracy theories will continue to proliferate, simply because they’re more engaging than the truth in many cases, he said.The recent trend of employees at these companies banding together to try and force changes from within is the fastest way to get these companies to alter their practices, he said. Recent examples of this from Google and Facebook give him hope.(Updates with comments from Compass CEO)\--With assistance from Gerrit De Vynck, Vincent Bielski, Eric Newcomer, Gerry Smith, Candy Cheng, Alistair Barr and Kartikay Mehrotra.To contact the reporters on this story: Patrick Clark in New York at pclark55@bloomberg.net;Kiley Roache in New York at kroache@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at jward56@bloomberg.net, Molly Schuetz, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

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  • 3 Monster Growth Stocks to Hold Through 2020
    TipRanks

    3 Monster Growth Stocks to Hold Through 2020

    The name of the game is growth; that’s what investors are looking for. Growth ensures profits, profits boost share prices, and higher share prices are the investor’s goal. In truth, this should not come as a surprise; the S&P 500 is up over 20% year-to-date, and statistically speaking, that sort of gain must encompass some stocks that are growing far faster.We’ve opened up TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy to find three buy-rated stocks that have more than doubled so far in 2019. But more importantly, analysts believe there's more upside in store heading into 2020; all three of these stocks show more than 30% upside potential. The stocks cover a wide range of market sectors – social media, online games, and biotechnology – reflecting the market reality that great opportunities abound, for investors willing to look.Sea Limited (SE)The online gaming sector has the benefit of devoted fans who will eagerly snap up their favorite companies’ latest offerings – but it has the risk of a tech-savvy fan base that won’t be amused by substandard offerings. Sea Limited owns and maintains a number of active titles in the Battle Royale genre, including Free Fire and Ring of Elysium. The company’s PUBG Lite was the most popular Battle Royale mobile game in South East Asia in the third quarter of this year, followed by SE’s Garena Free Fire. SE games rank among the top 10 grossing ranks in 51 as of this past September.Popular games are the path to profits, and SE announced a 203% year-over-year revenue gain in Q2 2019, reporting $665.4 million compared to $219.6 million in the prior-year quarter. Quarterly active users (QAU) gained 93% year-over-year, reaching 310.5 million. Of that total, 8.4% were quarterly paying users – more than double the year-ago number. With pre-registration starting for Call of Duty: Mobile, a collaboration with online giants Activision Tencent, Sea has excellent prospects to keep increasing its active and paying user numbers. The strongly positive outlook has pushed this stock up 151% year-to-date.Credit Suisse analyst Varun Ahuja was duly impressed. He reiterated his Outperform rating (an equivalent to Buy), while slightly increasing the price target from $43 to $44. His price target suggests a robust 54% upside potential. (To watch Ahuja's track record, click here)Ahuja wrote, “For 3Q19, we are building in gaming revenue to grow by c.4% QoQ as the growth in Free Fire is likely to be offset by slowdown in other mobile games… SEA Ltd's stock price has corrected by c.15% post the 2Q19 results. We see the correction as a strong accumulating opportunity given that its underlying fundamentals remain solid.”JPMorgan's team added, “SE’s share price declined by 9% on 8 October (CCMP -1.7%). Different investors attributed the sell-off to different reasons. Interestingly though, none of the factors created a major concern on their own but together resulted in a sell-off in a weak market. We remain OW on SE and see improving monthly gaming revenues…” The firm gives this stock a $41 price target, indicative of a 43% upside.So, the consensus on SE is ‘buy the dip.’ The stock has a Strong Buy consensus rating, based on 5 positive reviews in the last three months. Shares or selling for $28.50, and the $44 average price target suggests an upside potential of 54%. (Sea Limited stock analysis on TipRanks)Snap, Inc. (SNAP)With Snap, we get into social media. The popular Snapchat app allows users to put a variety of funny filters on their smartphone photos, use image messaging, chat and exchange images with other users, and create and share ephemeral online ‘stories.’ The company’s other products include Spectacles, a wearable camera, and Bitmoji, a personalized sticker spin-off of the popular Bitstrip cartoon app.Snap went public in 2017 and has been volatile ever since. The market downturn in 2H 2018 hit the company hard, and shares lost 64%. SNAP has recovered since and is now trading 179% higher than its December 2018 bottom. For the year-to-date, SNAP is up 153%.In its most recent earnings report, for Q3, SNAP reported a series of strong metrics. Daily active users were up to 210 million, revenues were up to $446 million, and the reported loss per share was 4 cents. The forecasts had called for 207 million DAUs, revenues of $435.1 million, and a 5 cent EPS loss. The gains were welcome news, because the company lowered guidance for forward revenues, to the $540 to $560 million range, while the expectation had been for $555. Shares slipped on the lower guidance.Top analysts see SNAP’s recent share price slip as a buying opportunity. Writing from JPMorgan, 5-star analyst Doug Anmuth said, “We believe Snap shares are increasingly compelling following a 20%+ pullback from recent highs and after delivering 3Q results that we believe showed more encouraging trends. Importantly, we believe that Snap's platform and business have both improved dramatically over the past several quarters…” Anmuth’s $20 price target implies an upside potential of 43%. (To watch Anmuth's track record, click here)Ross Sandler, from Barclays, also gives SNAP a Buy rating, explaining his stance with several points: “We are Overweight based on 5 key elements: 1) SNAP’s Ad revenue headwind is almost done, 2) the overall narrative may change in 2019, 3) new Ad formats could help starting 1Q19, 4) short interest is high, and 5) SNAP could see stronger user growth in early 2019.”SNAP’s analyst consensus rating is a Moderate Buy, based on 11 Buys and 10 Holds set in the past three months. The average price target of $18.82 suggests a healthy upside potential of 34% from the current trading price of $13.96. (See Snap stock analysis on TipRanks)NovoCure (NVCR)The biotech industry is known for its high upside potential, and also its risk. This is not a field for fainthearted investors – it is capital intensive, and slow to show returns. A failed drug trial or a denial of regulatory approval can spell ruin. But once a new product shows its worth, the profits can be staggering. So, it should come as no surprise that NovoCure stock shows a 43% upside potential.The company inhabits the cancer treatment niche. The company’s product, Optune, is not a drug; rather, it uses specially tuned electrical fields (Tumor Treating Fields) to disrupt the growth and division of cancer cells in tumors. Optune was designed to combat recurrent glioblastoma, and received FDA approval in 2015. The company currently markets the treatment system actively in the United States, Europe (Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Sweden), Israel, and Japan.NovoCure’s pipeline includes trials of Optune as a treatment for six other cancers: non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), liver cancer, pancreatic cancer, ovarian cancer, liver cancer, and mesothelioma. These trials of Tumor Treating Fields have reached Phase 3 as of this year.A unique product, with FDA approval, and the prospect of applications beyond its original target are all positive aspects for a biotech company, and NovoCure’s earnings and revenues have reflected this. Like many small to medium biotech startups, the company is still in the red, but earnings are on an upward trajectory and have beaten the forecasts twice in the last four quarters. In the most recent report, for Q2 2019, NVCR showed a loss of 1 cent per share, well ahead of the forecast 7 cent loss and far better than the year-ago loss of 17 cents. Revenues came in at $86.7 million, beating the estimates by 6.4%. Despite a slip in recent weeks, NVCR stock is up 104% so far this year.This company’s strong performance has attracted a laudatory review from Oppenheimer. Analyst Esther Rajavelu set a Buy rating and raised her price target by 14%, to $97, saying, “We raise our PT as we now better appreciate the incremental Optune GBM revenue potential if used in conjunction with radiation therapy (vs post radiation). While a registrational trial and regulatory approval will be required prior to use, we view this incremental patient pool as low hanging opportunity beginning in 2023…” Her target indicates confidence in a 42% upside to the stock.With 3 Buy ratings given in the last three months, NVCR has a Strong Buy from the analyst consensus. The stock sells for $68.30, and the average price target of $97 implies room for a 43% upside. (See NovoCure stock analysis on TipRanks)