Heartland Institute Executive Editor Justin Haskins on the Democratic Party's shift to the left and former Vice President Joe Biden's gaffes on the campaign trail.
Heartland Institute Executive Editor Justin Haskins on the Democratic Party's shift to the left and former Vice President Joe Biden's gaffes on the campaign trail.
(Bloomberg) -- As U.S. retailers celebrate a boom lifting one of the pandemic’s hardest-hit sectors, scars left by a year of bankruptcies and delayed vendor payments could threaten to undermine their recovery -- just as the crucial back-to-school shopping season begins.After watching their receivables mount last year, vendors of apparel and other goods demanded change. In order to ship, many began requiring payment upon delivery of the goods or even in advance, according to people with knowledge of the demands, which were made of distressed and healthy clients alike. For merchants, that’s a big cash drain at a time of great uncertainty.The shift comes after retailers spent much of last year delaying payments to preserve cash. Such maneuvers have long been used by struggling chains, but amid the pandemic, even more stable merchants like Macy’s Inc. and Gap Inc. followed suit. An analysis of company financial data showed such buyers took at least two weeks longer to pay their suppliers than the same period the prior year.Vendors are “shell-shocked” after a string of Covid-era bankruptcies left them with large losses, and more concerned about guaranteeing they’ll be paid, said Perry Mandarino, head of restructuring and investment banking at B. Riley. “Late payments are not being tolerated,” Mandarino said.Contributing to their hard-line approach is the knowledge that one traditional safety net has become less available and more expensive. Credit insurance and factoring companies -- the financial support systems for many suppliers -- scaled back last year after suffering their own Covid losses from unpaid vendor bills they were forced to cover. Many are waiting to see how retailers recover and are only selectively writing policies tied to the healthiest merchants now.Manufacturers need to protect themselves, but they still need to sell goods. Vendors don’t have the capability to manage the risk on their own, said Michael McGrail, chief operating officer at Tiger Capital Group, which conducts services including inventory appraisals. Without a backstop, “it becomes a real leap of faith,” to supply goods and wait for payment.Some see the pullback inviting nontraditional entrants into the market for vendor financing. New York-based Angelo Gordon is one investment firm wading into the space; it’s begun offering put options on accounts receivable claims, another form of trade credit insurance for vendors.Refinancing WaveOne other bright spot for retailers is that many have the benefit of red-hot debt markets to refinance other obligations. In March, Nordstrom Inc. issued bonds to buy back pricey debt it borrowed in mid-2020. Kohl’s Corp. followed soon after, slashing its interest costs.Those savings may help retailers plug the hole created by accelerating vendor payments, said Lynn Whitmore, corporate origination leader for Wells Fargo Commercial Capital’s origination team.“On one hand, smart companies like Nordstrom and Kohl’s are raising money to maximize liquidity, reduce interest expense, and extend looming debt maturities,” Whitmore said. “On the other, even though many retailers are flush with cash, they are still facing vendor pressures and supply chain challenges more than they have before.”Vendors have also been taking action to recoup payment when clients delay checks or enter Chapter 11, which freezes ordinary payments and leaves creditors at risk of losses. After stationery chain Paper Source Inc. filed for bankruptcy in March, suppliers complained publicly that the company had placed large orders in the previous weeks only to seek bankruptcy protection without paying for them.Vendors to Sycamore-backed Belk Inc. last year consulted lawyers about missed or months-delayed payments, and at least a dozen suppliers to Eddie Lampert’s Sears chain filed lawsuits in 2020 over unpaid bills, according to court filings.Belk filed for bankruptcy in February with a plan to fully repay vendors, and Sears has confidentially settled the majority of its vendor suits. Both companies declined to comment. A representative for Paper Source said the company is “confident” many suppliers will be reimbursed for a majority of their claims. Stretched SchedulesSuppliers to distressed retailers have always had to fret whether their last check before a bankruptcy would leave them short. But amid the pandemic, the concern extended to healthier chains. Merchants across the credit spectrum have strategically deferred rent and other bills to preserve cash, and that’s meant that even healthy buyers with previously sterling records have startled vendors.Gap, for example, took about 68 days to pay in the quarter through October, more than three weeks longer than in the same period the previous year. It stretched fourth-quarter payments by more than two weeks, to 57 days. Ross Stores Inc. had a similar jump, taking 75 and 68 days to pay in its most recent third and fourth quarters, or about a month longer than last year.Typically, retailers pay within 45 days, though many doubled that time during the pandemic, according to a person familiar with the situation. At Macy’s, payment times jumped about a month, to 111 and 93 days in the third and fourth quarters.A Macy’s representative referred to a March 2020 statement saying the retailer would extend payment times to boost liquidity, and added that the department store chain is starting to shorten its payment schedule as operations normalize. Representatives for Ross and Gap didn’t respond to requests for comment.“There has been and there continues to be a significant amount of disruption in the marketplace,” said Michael Stanley, managing director and head of factoring at leading industry firm Rosenthal & Rosenthal.(Corrects spelling of Wells in ninth paragraph of story published May 4.)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) -- Shares of Covid-19 vaccine developers in Asia got some relief after the German Chancellor rejected a U.S. proposal to waive patent protections for coronavirus shots.Chinese vaccine makers rebounded after slumping on Thursday following the initial news that the U.S. would support discussions for a waiver of the rights to develop vaccines. The Biden administration’s plan would create “severe complications” for the production of vaccines, a German government spokeswoman said Thursday in an email.Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group Co., which has the rights to develop and market BioNTech SE’s shot in China, advanced as much as 7% in Hong Kong after sinking 14% the previous day. Walvax Biotechnology Co. gained 3.7% in Shanghai, one of the best performers in the benchmark CSI 300 Index.In the U.S., Pfizer Inc., BioNTech SE, Novavax Inc. and CureVac NV all pared an earlier slump.Some analysts had urged for caution to the news prior to Merkel’s announcement. The Biden administration’s plans will only open up a negotiation at the WTO and other countries and members remain unwilling, said Barclays analyst Carter Gould in a note.For Evercore ISI analyst Umer Raffat, U.S. support didn’t mean it was a “100% done deal” as other countries are also opposed. It “remains to be seen if U.S. leadership’s position sways others,” Raffat wrote in a note.With many countries struggling with a resurgence of the virus, U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai said Wednesday the Biden administration will take part in negotiations for the text of a waiver of the rights at the World Trade Organization. The European Union said Thursday it was willing to participate.Big BusinessVaccines have been a big business for the firms that make them, with Pfizer, BioNTech’s partner outside of China, raising its forecast for 2021 vaccine sales to $26 billion just this week.Read more: Analysts say investor fears of U.S. vaccine waiver support are overblownThe International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations condemned the move as “disappointing.”“A waiver is the simple but the wrong answer to what is a complex problem,” the group said in a statement. “Waiving patents of Covid-19 vaccines will not increase production nor provide practical solutions needed to battle this global health crisis.”(Updates with Asian moves)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.
You could be entitled to additional money, based on your 2020 income tax return.
In an interview with Fortune, Alba talked about taking her “fourth baby” (a.k.a. her company) public.
(Bloomberg) -- Coinbase Global Inc. sank to a record low as investors fled high-flying market newcomers.The operator of the largest U.S. cryptocurrency exchange tumbled as much as 7% to $254.02 on Thursday, slumping for a fourth straight day. That left the shares in danger of breaching the $250 reference price for its April direct listing. An exchange-traded fund that tracks shares of companies that recently went public plunged for an eighth day, the longest slide since 2015. Virgin Galactic Holdings Inc. and Opendoor Technologies Inc., companies that came to market through blank-check offerings, sank more than 5%.“We saw a mini-bubble in SPACs, IPOs, crypto, clean-tech and hyper-growth in late 2020 and early 2021 and many of these asset classes are nursing bad hangovers,” said Mike Bailey, director of research at FBB Capital Partners.Coinbase’s slide comes as investors pour into extremely speculative cryptocurrencies such as Dogecoin and Binance Coin -- tokens that the exchange doesn’t offer. Most of its traffic had come from Bitcoin trades, but the price of the largest crypto coin has been mired in a narrow band for weeks. Coinbase started trading at $381 on April 14 before briefly topping $400. It’s now down 22% from the close on its first day.Nasdaq had set a reference price of $250 a share on April 13 for Coinbase’s direct listing, a number that’s a requirement for the stock to begin trading, but not a direct indicator of the company’s potential market capitalization.“What has really hurt Coinbase, now that their direct listing has taken off, you’re seeing expectations that other exchanges are coming on board,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda. “There’s this belief this could be as good as it gets for Coinbase in the short-term.”The Renaissance IPO ETF dropped as much as 4.9% on Thursday, bringing its year-to-date loss to about 21%.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.
Bill Gates transferred stakes in several companies to Melinda Gates on the day the power couple announced their divorce
The crypto run this time has two features the 2017 version didn’t—institutional adoption and actual applications.
Vlad Tenev, CEO of Robinhood Markets, speaking at a “fireside chat” on Thursday, attempts to dispel any lingering speculation that the brokerage may be a so-called dogecoin whale, maintaining a massive stockpile of the crypto for its own benefit.
The (ARKK) ETF (ticker: ARKK) delivered a 153% return in 2020. The ETF, which is actively managed by ARK Invest CEO and her team, is down 27% over the last three months, including an 13% decline in the past week alone.
It pays to be in the stuffed crust pizza game if you are Papa John's.
Since I have a monthly car allowance of $450 I want to step up my game and maybe even get a luxury car. The car I want to lease would be an almost $600-a-month car payment. During this exciting time, I can understand your desire to step into the car of your dreams.
(Bloomberg) -- Actress Jessica Alba cemented her claim to one of the most lucrative side gigs in Hollywood after shares of her beauty business, the Honest Co., soared 44% in its market debut.The “clean” beauty- and baby-products maker’s stock closed at $23 Wednesday after it priced the shares at $16 in its initial public offering. Alba’s roughly 5% stake is valued at $98 million, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. She also has exercisable options valued at about $24 million.Read more: Alba’s Honest Co. Set for Opening Bell After $413 Million IPO“I feel like I’m in a dream, to be honest. Wow. Is this really happening?” Alba said in an interview with Bloomberg TV. “I’m so grateful to our very loyal community. Thank you for bringing us into your home. Thank you for trusting us with you most precious people, your little people.”Alba, 40, founded the business in 2011, motivated by the dearth of baby products that were free of harsh chemicals. The carbon-neutral company makes diapers, wipes, shampoo and lotions it bills as “clean and natural,” and targets a customer base of parents who are eco-conscious, aspirational and relatively affluent. Honest Co. had revenue of about $301 million in 2020, a 28% jump from a year earlier, and an operating loss of $13.5 million.The Los Angeles-based company is now valued at almost $2.1 billion, or $2.45 billion when fully diluted to include employee stock options and restricted stock units. That’s significantly more than its $860 million implied valuation in a 2017 funding round, according to Pitchbook. Honest has been dogged in the past by product recalls and controversy over its claims to use only natural ingredients. Prior to those issues, it was valued at $1.7 billion in a 2015 funding round.Rare ExampleThe IPO marks an almost 260% return for L Catterton, the private equity firm backed by billionaire Bernard Arnault that invested $200 million in 2018. The company sold about half its stake in the offering.The actress is a rare example of someone successfully bridging a career between Hollywood and Wall Street. While many celebrities strike licensing deals for fashion lines or products such as perfume or vodka, few have gone on to found publicly traded companies.Alba, whose official title is chief creative officer, continues to work as an actor, most recently starring in the crime television series, “L.A.’s Finest.”“I was born into a hardworking Mexican-American family. My parents worked multiple jobs, doing whatever it took to get by,” Alba wrote in a letter included in the company’s prospectus, describing a childhood marked by poor health and hospital stays. “By the time I was ten, I became aware of how wellness can define your whole life. That’s never left me.”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) -- Peloton Interactive Inc. projected revenue of $915 million in the current quarter, saying the recall of its treadmills would reduce sales by about $165 million. Shares gained about 5% in extended trading after investors had prepared for a larger blow.Chief Executive Officer John Foley said the financial impact would be “short term” from the halt to sales and recall of the Tread+ and Tread products. Peloton had planned May 27 for an expanded U.S. rollout of its less-expensive Tread, which has only about 1,050 models on the market, but Foley said Thursday the widespread launch will be delayed while safety improvements are put in place.Peloton, in conjunction with the U.S. Consumer Product and Safety Commission, on Wednesday announced the recall of the treadmills. The $4,295 Tread+ was connected to the death of a child and more than 70 reports of incidents, while the touchscreen of the less-expensive Tread was at risk of falling off. The products account for a small percentage of the company’s hardware revenue, which is primarily generated by stationary bicycles, but are seen as key future growth drivers.Foley said the company is working on new safety measures for the treadmills, including a software update that will include a passcode requirement for the more expensive model. Hardware changes are also being worked on, but must be approved by regulators, and may take six to eight weeks, he said. The company expects about 10% of users to seek refunds for their treadmills.In light of the recall, the company revised its forecasts and said annual revenue would be $4 billion compared with the previous guidance of $4.075 billion. Shares, which had fallen while investors awaited the foreast, jumped to a high of $89.20 in extended trading after closing at $83.78 in New York.Earlier, Peloton said sales gained 141% to $1.26 billion in the fiscal third quarter, which ended March 31. Analysts, on average, projected $1.12 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.Connected fitness subscriptions -- users who pay for classes on Peloton equipment -- jumped 135% to 2.08 million, the New York-based fitness technology company said in a statement. Paid digital subscriptions, made up of people who take classes on smartphones, tablets and other devices, increased to 891,000. Both numbers topped analysts’ average estimates.Peloton sales have soared in the past year as the pandemic shut gyms and forced people to work out from home. However, the company has struggled to keep up with demand for months, leading to long wait times and frustrated customers. Those supply issues droves shares down about 45% in 2021.In a letter to shareholders, Peloton said average shipping times for its original bike are back to pre-pandemic levels. “While progress has been made, additional work remains to reduce delivery times across the remainder of our product portfolio and regions,” the company said.Peloton said it completed its acquisition of fitness equipment maker Precor on April 1 and integration is “well underway.” The company plans to make a limited number of products at Precor’s North Carolina facility by the end of 2021.The company recently said it would expand to Australia later this year, adding in the letter that it sees “significant growth opportunities in a broad range of international markets.” but had no announcements at this time.Peloton said connected fitness subscription workouts increased 239% to 149.5 million in the quarter, an average of 26 monthly per user compared with 17.7 in the same period a year earlier. The monthly churn rate was 0.31%, though 98% of subscribers are on a month-to-month basis.Peloton reported an adjusted profit before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of $63.2 million in the fiscal third quarter, topping analysts’ estimates of $18.3 million. Net loss narrowed to $8.6 million, or 3 cents a share, from $55.6 million, or 20 cents, a year earlier.(Updates with estimate of treadmill refunds in the fourth 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.
Home buyers continue to pour into the real-estate market, encouraged by the favorable financing they can score.
More returns need additional review due to things like the recovery rebate credit.
AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. lost more than half a billion dollars in the first three months of the year while reopening almost all of its U.S. theaters, but executives see brighter days ahead and the stock gained 3% in after-hours trading Thursday after eight straight days of declines.
Cathie Wood's ARK Innovation exchange-traded fund is significantly oversold and due for a bounce, but if it doesn't come the popular fund risks suffering a “waterfall” decline, says one chart watcher.
Older workers were faced with an especially hard fallout from the pandemic.
The 30-year fixed rate hasn’t been this low since February.
A year into the pandemic, some homeowners say loan servicers aren't giving them clear information about mortgage forbearance.