|Bid||1,760.00 x 900|
|Ask||0.00 x 1000|
|Day's range||1,762.00 - 1,789.77|
|52-week range||1,307.00 - 2,035.80|
|Beta (3Y monthly)||1.63|
|PE ratio (TTM)||73.25|
|Earnings date||24 Oct 2019|
|Forward dividend & yield||N/A (N/A)|
|1y target est||2,301.47|
BROADCAST AND DIGITAL RESTRICTIONS~** Broadcasters: MUST ON SCREEN COURTESY @JEFFBEZOS TWITTER/INSTAGRAM Digital: MUST ON SCREEN COURTESY @JEFFBEZOS TWITTER/INSTAGRAM Bezos made an appearance at Dunbar High School in Washington, D.C. on Monday (October 21), as part of a new program launched by the company. Through its "Amazon Future Engineer" program, the tech giant is funding computer science courses for over 2,000 high schools in underserved and underrepresented communities across the U.S. The program is set to benefit over 100,000 students, Amazon says, by providing teaching in a sector that is set to be an increasing source of future employment. In a video shared by Bezos on his Twitter and Instagram accounts, the billionaire businessman can be seen joking and interacting with students and Ramona Hutchins, the science teacher at Dunbar High.
Amazon Web Services has been the crown jewel for Amazon. The company's cloud computing segment has grown faster than its flagship e-commerce portal.
(Bloomberg) -- Facebook Inc. and Amazon.com Inc. set federal lobbying records in the third quarter as Washington ramps up oversight of the tech giants’ business practices.Facebook spent $4.8 million, an increase of almost 70% from the same period the year before. The world’s largest social media company is grappling with a mushrooming list of challenges, including federal and state antitrust investigations, criticism of its handling of users’ personal information, and dissatisfaction with its treatment of political content.Amazon spent $4 million on lobbying, the most the e-commerce giant has ever spent in a single quarter. Amazon, which runs a diverse set of businesses, is fending off criticism from lawmakers and regulators over its acquisitions and its bid for a highly lucrative Pentagon cloud contract.Spending by Alphabet Inc.’s Google dropped almost 50%, to $2.8 million from $5.5 million in the same period last year. Google is reshuffling its Washington lobbying operations under Karan Bhatia, the global policy chief who joined the company last year. In September, Google hired former Republican Senate aide Mark Isakowitz to head up its operations in the capital, replacing Susan Molinari. During the second quarter, Google ended its relationship with more than a dozen lobbyists at six outside firms.The big internet platforms are facing a high level of scrutiny of their business practices after years of virtual inaction in Washington. Both the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission, which share a mandate to enforce antitrust laws, have announced broad reviews of the technology sector -- indicating that Facebook and possibly Amazon will undergo parallel investigations by both agencies. The House Judiciary Committee is investigating antitrust issues in the tech sector, including scrutiny of how Amazon treats third-party sellers on its platform. The FTC is also questioning third-party merchants who sell their goods through Amazon, Bloomberg has reported. Facebook and Google face bipartisan antitrust probes by dozens of state attorneys general, as well.Although Google has decreased its lobbying footprint, it’s turning to other ways to get out a new message in Washington: The search engine is promoting users’ safety and security.In October, even as Google faced an array of public-policy challenges, the company rolled out a security-awareness campaign that included ads at Ronald Reagan National Airport and seven metro stations -- including “station domination” of two stops with posters throughout the stations, even on the bases of turnstiles, according to Washington’s transit agency.The initiative included three-day, pop-up displays touting Google’s privacy check-up features and educating passersby about online security tools in Union Station and at the Federal Triangle metro station, just blocks from the Capitol and the White House, respectively. The campaign, which was billed as part of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, featured ads declaring that “Gmail blocks over 100 million phishing attempts, every day,” and touting a feature that allows users to automatically delete their data periodically.The campaign was designed to target Washington’s population of lawmakers, congressional staff, members of the media and think-tank workers, a target-rich environment for hackers, according to a person familiar with the campaign.Tim LaPira, an associate professor of political science at James Madison University who studies lobbying, said the campaign’s message pushes back against the notion that the company has lost control of users’ privacy and should be regulated in ways it would oppose.“Rather than only lobbying ‘inside’ the marbled halls of Capitol Hill, Google is trying to convince regular folks that their self-initiated security and privacy features are sufficient,” LaPira said in an email.Expenditures for ad campaigns don’t normally appear on lobbying disclosures, and the company didn’t disclose the cost.After years of growing popularity, the internet companies’ fortunes are falling in Washington due in part to revelations about how Facebook was exploited by Russia, which meddled in the 2016 election, and to concerns that Facebook’s privacy practices are too lax.In July, Facebook agreed to pay $5 billion to the FTC -- the largest privacy fine in the agency’s history -- to resolve the Cambridge Analytica data scandal in which a consulting firm hired by Donald Trump’s campaign obtained data without users’ knowledge from a researcher who created a personality quiz app on the social network. Google was also fined by the FTC to settle claims it violated children’s privacy on its YouTube platform.Facebook lobbied on competition, online advertising, a campaign finance transparency bill focusing on digital ads, and federal privacy legislation, among other issues, according to the disclosures, which cover the period ending Sept. 30. It lobbied Congress, the White House, the FTC and the Justice Department.Google lobbied on global trade, digital advertising, cybersecurity and other issues, according to its filings.Apple Inc. reported spending $1.8 million during the third quarter, up 34% from the same period last year. The company said it lobbied on a range of issues including tariffs, privacy, government access to data and patent litigation.Trade groups representing Facebook and Google have also pushed the U.S.’s proposed trade deal with Mexico and Canada to replace Nafta, which contains several digital provisions the groups favor -- including the extension of liability protections for third-party content that internet platforms host. Both companies lobbied on the pact.That shield is increasingly under threat in the U.S. The leadership of the powerful House Energy and Commerce Committee suggested in an August letter that the liability exemption, which helps the companies avoid a wide range of lawsuits, shouldn’t stay in the trade deal while lawmakers are weighing whether to keep it intact.Contested ContractSoftware giant Oracle Corp. spent $1.7 million in the third quarter, an increase of more than 20% from the same period last year. Microsoft Corp. slightly increased its spending to $2.3 million in the period.Both companies have been battling Amazon over a $10 billion Pentagon cloud-computing contract with moves that grabbed the attention of the White House. In July, Trump said he was considering intervening after hearing complaints that the bid terms are biased and tainted by conflicts of interest. Defense Secretary Mark Esper, who on Tuesday recused himself from deciding anything involving the deal because his son works with one of the original applicants, had ordered a review of the contract, known as the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, or JEDI. Esper had said there is no “hard timeline” to complete the review.Oracle has waged a legal and lobbying campaign against the cloud-computing program for about two years. Amazon appears to be fighting back. In June, its cloud unit, Amazon Web Services, hired Trump-connected Jeff Miller to lobby for the company.The third-quarter reports also showed significant activity on trade and tariff issues as Trump continued his trade war with China. Lobbying efforts to pass the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, also intensified.The National Retail Federation, which is helping lead a coalition of trade groups opposed to Trump’s tariffs, showed almost $2.3 million in lobbying spending in the third quarter, up from almost $2 million in the second quarter. A spokeswoman said much of the increase was related to trade and tariffs.The Consumer Technology Association, whose members include Apple Inc., Amazon and Facebook, reported spending more than $1.6 million during the third quarter, up from $1.1 million in the same period last year.“As long as the president continues to use tariffs as a weapon, CTA will continue to lobby Congress to exercise its clear authority on trade and tax matters,” Michael Petricone, the group’s senior vice president for government and regulatory affairs, said in a statement to Bloomberg.(Updates with Google advertising from seventh paragraph.)\--With assistance from Mark Niquette.To contact the reporters on this story: Naomi Nix in Washington at email@example.com;Ben Brody in Washington, D.C. at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Sara Forden at email@example.com, Mark NiquetteFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
The largest company in the world is reporting earnings Wednesday, October 23rd, after the bell in one of the most anticipated September quarter releases.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- The holiday shopping season is a crucial stretch for virtually every retailer. But it’s especially important this year for Kohl’s Corp. — for its own sake, and as part of the industry’s larger challenge of figuring out how to make the department store relevant in the digital era.In general, Kohl’s is playing with a better hand than some of its closest rivals in the category. But it’s undeniable that the chain got off to a rough start this year. Comparable sales sank 3.4% from a year earlier in the first quarter, a result that was far below analyst estimates and that forced the chain to slash its annual earnings guidance. It recorded yet another decline in comparable sales in the second quarter, with weakness in the home goods, footwear and women’s apparel departments contributing to the gloom.The company has promised the back half of the year will look significantly better largely thanks to two major projects: Accepting returns of Amazon.com Inc. purchases in its stores and adding a slew of new brands to its lineup. If there’s not clear evidence in the holiday rush that these initiatives are getting quick traction, it will raise serious doubts about the feasibility of a Kohl’s turnaround.Kohl’s partnership with Amazon is one of the more intriguing in the retail industry. In theory, it should be a win-win situation, allowing Kohl’s stores to get a stream of new foot traffic and allowing Amazon to offer the convenience of returns in physical stores — something many shoppers prefer to returns by mail.By the time holiday season heats up, Kohl’s will have had plenty of time to publicize this service. And the end of the holiday rush generally tends to be a peak time for merchandise returns. So this is kind of a natural experiment to see whether shoppers will take advantage of Kohl’s program and whether Kohl’s can convert any increased foot traffic into sales growth.Kohl’s executives have also been talking a big game about the benefits they should reap in the holiday quarter from a “record level of newness” — retail jargon that basically means they have an unusually large batch of new brands coming into its stores in time for the holiday season.Among its refreshed offerings are Nine West shoes, an exclusive women’s line by luxe designer Jason Wu and a home goods label from the stars of HGTV’s “Property Brothers.” A press release last week also ticked off a laundry list of beauty brands that are coming to Kohl’s, demonstrating its sensible investment in a category that has been a retail industry bright spot in recent years.Kohl’s deserves some credit for understanding that better merchandise is at the heart of any retailing turnaround. But if all this effort at giving customers something new doesn’t contribute meaningfully to fourth-quarter comparable sales, then Kohl’s will have wasted time in its attempt to strengthen its merchandise.It’s not that Kohl’s doesn’t have other ways to shore up the business. It is also shrinking its stores to help with profitability and experimenting with new in-store presentations.But if these two big ones — the Amazon partnership and stable of new brands — don’t quickly pay off in the form of improved traffic and stronger comparable sales, then investors will not be happy. And in its continuing battle against the digital onslaught, the retail industry will have yet another data point about what doesn’t work.To contact the author of this story: Sarah Halzack at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Newman at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Sarah Halzack is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering the consumer and retail industries. She was previously a national retail reporter for the Washington Post.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
The negative stock performance of AMZN might reverse given the positive earnings estimate revision trend, which is generally a precursor to an earnings beat, and attractive fundamentals.
The earnings season in the United States is in full swing. This means that stocks of the largest American companies will likely make big moves. Below we have gathered some important information for those who want to trade on these releases.
Google’s Nest business made system changes that could weaken its device sales. Some homebuilders are dropping these products in their smart homes.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- United Parcel Service Inc. is offering everything to investors that FedEx Corp. isn’t, and that’s still seemingly not enough.The package-delivery company on Tuesday reported better-than-expected third-quarter earnings and maintained its full-year profit outlook. That’s a sharp contrast to FedEx’s bruising guidance cut just over a month ago, which the company blamed on a weakening global economy, and analysts blamed on idiosyncratic foot faults. UPS is trimming its capital expenditure budget by $500 million this year and next year, which will help boost its 2019 free cash flow to more than $4 billion. FedEx, meanwhile, is on track to burn cash in fiscal 2020 and Moody’s Investors Service Inc. recently lowered its outlook for the company’s credit rating. Management’s decision to nevertheless leave its $5.9 billion spending budget intact has left investors scratching their heads — particularly because the billions it has spent so far don’t appear to be yielding results.UPS on Tuesday reported another quarterly improvement in its adjusted operating margin, a sign that its own push to invest in newer planes and automated systems is paying off as it manages a deluge of less profitable e-commerce shipments. And yet, the stock fell more than 4% in early trading. The problem is, as much as UPS is widening the execution gap between itself and FedEx, it can’t escape the weakening macroeconomic backdrop.Revenue in the third quarter was marginally weaker than analysts had been expecting, and UPS warned that its profit guidance was contingent on “no further deterioration” in global trade uncertainty or U.S. industrial weakness. No one really knows what’s going to happen with trade relations. President Donald Trump signaled this week that negotiations over a partial deal with China are progressing and could lead to a signed agreement by November, but there’s little indication that the existing tariffs will be rolled back. I, for one, wouldn’t be willing to bet against a further slowdown in manufacturing, given declining shipment volumes at the railroads in the third quarter and decelerating sales growth at the likes of industrial distributor Fastenal Co.Drilling down into UPS’s results, there’s a variety of other nitpick items that take on more importance in a weaker economy. For example, while unit costs improved by 2.5% on an adjusted basis in the U.S. domestic division, the average amount of revenue UPS collected per package in that business declined by about 1%. The third quarter brought a surge in volumes, with FedEx’s decision to stop carrying packages for Amazon.com Inc. in the U.S. likely driving more of the e-commerce giant’s packages to UPS. A weakening yield will raise questions about how profitable that business can ultimately be for UPS, and whether it made the right decision by sticking with a customer that’s also increasingly a competitor.Adding to the jitters, UPS also announced on Tuesday that Jim Barber, chief operating officer and the heir apparent to CEO David Abney, was stepping down. Barber’s departure is a surprise, and it’s always going to raise eyebrows when a leadership change is announced without the simultaneous appointment of a successor. That being said, Abney has made an effort to shake up UPS’s staid culture by bringing in more executives from the outside. Earlier this year, UPS hired a PepsiCo Inc. executive, Brian Newman, to be its chief financial officer. Abney hired his chief transformation officer from Walmart Inc., his chief marketing officer from Xerox Corp. and his supply-chain solutions leader from logistics company DB Schenker. So the departure of Barber, a nearly 35-year veteran, would seem to be setting up an appointment in a similar vein. Grooming an outsider to succeed Abney would further differentiate UPS from FedEx, which is still run by founder Fred Smith and whose top executives have all been there for decades and act like it.UPS is moving in the right direction, even if the economy isn’t.To contact the author of this story: Brooke Sutherland at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Beth Williams at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Brooke Sutherland is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering deals and industrial companies. She previously wrote an M&A column for Bloomberg News.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
One expert predicts Amazon’s nationwide rollout for free, one-day shipping will remain top of mind for investors as the company gears up to report Thursday after the bell.
(Bloomberg) -- Google lured billions of consumers to its digital services by offering copious free cloud storage. That’s beginning to change.The Alphabet Inc. unit has whittled down some free storage offers in recent months, while prodding more users toward a new paid cloud subscription called Google One. That’s happening as the amount of data people stash online continues to soar.When people hit those caps, they realize they have little choice but to start paying, or risk losing access to emails, photos and personal documents. The cost isn’t excessive for most consumers, but at the scale Google operates, this could generate billions of dollars in extra revenue each year for the company. Google didn’t respond to an email seeking comment.A big driver of the shift is Gmail. Google shook up the email business when Gmail launched in 2004 with much more free storage than rivals were providing at the time. It boosted the storage cap every couple of years, but in 2013 it stopped. People’s in-boxes kept filling up. And now that some of Google’s other free storage offers are shrinking, consumers are beginning to get nasty surprises.“I was merrily using the account and one day I noticed I hadn’t received any email since the day before,” said Rod Adams, a nuclear energy analyst and retired naval officer. After using Gmail since 2006, he’d finally hit his 15 GB cap and Google had cut him off. Switching away from Gmail wasn’t an easy option because many of his social and business contacts reach him that way.“I just said ‘OK, been free for a long time, now I’m paying,’” Adams said.Other Gmail users aren’t so happy about the changes. “I am unreasonably sad about using almost all of my free google storage. Felt infinite. Please don’t make me pay! I need U gmail googledocs!,” one person tweeted in September.Some people have tweeted panicked messages to Google in recent months as warnings about their storage limits hit.One self-described tech enthusiast said he’s opened multiple Gmail accounts to avoid bumping up on Google’s storage limits.Google has also ended or limited other promotions recently that gave people free cloud storage and helped them avoid Gmail crises. New buyers of Chromebook laptops used to get 100 GB at no charge for two years. In May 2019 that was cut to one year.Google’s Pixel smartphone, originally launched in 2016, came with free, unlimited photo storage via the company’s Photos service. The latest Pixel 4 handset that came out in October still has free photo storage, but the images are compressed now, reducing the quality.More than 11,500 people in a week signed an online petition to bring back the full, free Pixel photos deal. Evgeny Rezunenko, the petition organizer, called Google’s change a “hypocritical and cash grabbing move.”“Let us remind Google that part of the reason of people choosing Pixel phones over other manufacturers sporting a similar hefty price tag was indeed this service,” he wrote.Smartphones dramatically increased the number of photos people take -- one estimate put the total for 2017 at 1.2 trillion. Those images quickly fill up storage space on handsets, so tech companies, including Apple Inc., Amazon.com Inc. and Google, offered cloud storage as an alternative. Now those online memories are piling up, some of these companies are charging users to keep them.Apple has been doing this for several years, building its iCloud storage service into a lucrative recurring revenue stream. When iPhone users get notifications that their devices are full and they should either delete photos and other files or pay more for cloud storage, people often choose the cloud option.In May, Google unveiled Google One, a replacement for its Drive cloud storage service. There’s a free 15 GB tier -- enough room for about 5,000 photos, depending on the resolution. Then it costs $1.99 a month for 100 GB and up from there. This includes several types of files previously stashed in Google Drive, plus Gmail emails and photos and videos. The company ended its Chromebook two-year 100 GB free storage offer around the same time, while the Pixel free photo storage deal ended in October with the release of the Pixel 4.Gmail, Drive and Google Photos have more than 1 billion users each. As the company whittles away free storage offers and prompts more people to pay, that creates a potentially huge new revenue stream for the company. If 10% of Gmail users sign up for the new $1.99 a month Google One subscription, that would generate almost $2.4 billion a year in annual, recurring sales for the company.Adams, the Gmail user, is one of the people contributing to this growing Google business. $1.99 a month is a relatively small price to pay to avoid losing his main point of digital contact with the world.“It’s worked this long,” Adams said. “I didn’t want to bother changing the address.”To contact the reporter on this story: Gerrit De Vynck in New York at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.com, Alistair Barr, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Want to receive this post in your inbox every day? Sign up for the Balance of Power newsletter, and follow Bloomberg Politics on Twitter and Facebook for more.Justin Trudeau has hung on, barely.He won over Canada’s urban voters to cling to power in a minority parliament — despite losing the popular vote.Although his mandate has been weakened, the result will come as a relief for Trudeau. He entered the campaign wounded by a scandal over his handling of a judicial case and was further rocked by revelations he wore blackface at least three times when he was younger.A second term will allow him to cement one of the most left-leaning agendas the country has seen in at least a generation — progressive on social issues, willing to run deficits to tackle income disparities, assertive on climate change and fervently internationalist in an era of populist nativism.But the result has exposed a deep fault line between rural Canada and its biggest cities, as well as a stark regional split. The Conservatives, traditional champions of the oil sector, finished strongly in the western provinces, while the separatist Bloc Quebecois more than tripled its tally from 2015.Trudeau will now need to tread carefully after this obvious rebuke, and prepare to ramp up spending to win the support he’ll need as head of a minority government.Global HeadlinesDown to the wire | The future of Syria may come down to a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan today. With the clock ticking on Ankara’s cease-fire for Kurdish fighters to leave northeastern Syria, Putin may press Erdogan to talk with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to prevent a clash between Syrian and Turkish troops.Lobbying blitz | Huawei’s lobbying spending spiked in the third quarter as the Chinese telecom colossus hired a fundraiser for Trump with deep ties to the Republican leadership to help it fight back against the administration’s blacklisting of the company from the U.S. market. Facebook and Amazon.com also set federal lobbying records as Washington ramps up oversight of the tech giants’ business practices.Shaken ‘oasis’ | A country that regularly tops Latin America’s general prosperity metrics, Chile has been rocked by upheaval over the past four days after a protest over a subway-fare hike morphed into an outpouring of broad discontent over economic inequality. The protests, organized mainly on social media, have killed 11 people and brought cities to a near standstill.Unfamiliar home | As Hong Kong’s historic pro-democracy protests become more violent, the more than 1 million mainland Chinese who migrated to the city in recent decades are becoming increasingly fearful. Mainlanders eschew Mandarin Chinese, while out in the Cantonese-speaking city, they monitor social media to avoid protesters and regularly flee across the border to escape the weekend chaos.Prisoner’s dilemma | When NATO jets bombed Serb forces 20 years ago to force them out of Kosovo, Albin Kurti was convicted of terrorism, beaten in jail and packed onto a bus with other political prisoners to be used as a human shield. Now, after his party won this month’s snap elections in the strategically important nation, it will be up to him to try to mend ties with Serbia to open the way for the neighbors to join the European Union.What to WatchBritish Prime Minister Boris Johnson will find out this evening whether he has a chance of getting his Brexit deal through Parliament ahead of the Oct. 31 deadline with the second reading of his Withdrawal Agreement Bill. House Democrats are looking to significantly advance the impeachment probe of Trump with testimony today from the top U.S. diplomat to Ukraine, William Taylor, who had warned it was “crazy” to withhold military aid to get dirt on the president’s political rivals. Israel may be heading for a third election in less than a year after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu again failed to form a government. Now his centrist rival Benny Gantz will try, but he faces a similarly tough road to mustering a ruling majority. The Khama family has been synonymous with political power in the diamond-producing nation of Botswana, but its role is likely to be diminished after tomorrow’s general election following a split between former president Ian Khama and his successor, Mokgweetsi Masisi.Tell us how we’re doing or what we’re missing at firstname.lastname@example.org.And finally ... Big Brother is watching you. And you. And you. Officials in Moscow have spent the last few years assembling one of the world’s most-comprehensive video-surveillance networks, with about 200,000 cameras and the most sophisticated facial-recognition software outside of China. And it isn’t just western spies they’re looking at, but all 12.6 million Muscovites too. \--With assistance from Karl Maier, Muneeza Naqvi and Kathleen Hunter.To contact the author of this story: Josh Wingrove in Washington at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Ruth Pollard at firstname.lastname@example.org, Michael WinfreyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- The technology industry is looking for something different in a president in 2020. And it appears Pete Buttigieg is their candidate.While Joe Biden and Senator Elizabeth Warren are topping national polls in the contest for the Democratic Party’s nomination, California’s deep-pocketed Silicon Valley is donating to the 37-year-old mayor of South Bend, Indiana over the former vice president by a 5-to-1 margin.“Pete is a clean slate for the party in ways Biden can’t be,” said Cyrus Radfar, a 35-year-old technology entrepreneur and Democratic donor. “There’s new life and new energy that Pete brings, especially as the base of the Democratic Party is getting younger. I think he’s going to be on the national stage for a long time.”Buttigieg has staged a fundraising blitz in posh Northern California communities, holding events hosted by technology executives such as Netflix Inc. Chief Executive Officer Reed Hastings, Nest Labs home-automation company co-founder Matt Rogers, and Chelsea Kohler, director of product communications at Uber Technologies Inc., among others.Were he to win, Buttigieg would not only be the youngest president, but also the first openly gay one. While he is successfully raising money, Buttigieg has struggled until recently to enter the top tier of candidates nationally.But there are signs that he could be a moderate voter’s alternative to Biden. While raising money in California, Buttigieg is campaigning heavily in Iowa, and it appears both efforts are paying off. A USA Today/Suffolk University poll of likely Iowa caucus goers put Buttigieg just behind Biden and Warren for the first time. Biden had 18% support, Warren 17% and Buttigieg 13%.Millennial voters in the tech industry say they appreciate that Buttigieg’s liberal policies seem grounded in reality and recognize “a cutthroat world,” as Elizabeth Moran, 28, put it at a debate watch party in Silicon Valley’s Sunnyvale. Moran, who works at Poshmark, a social commerce platform, said she likes Buttigieg’s grasp of economics.“Well-educated recognizes well-educated,” Moran said, adding that Buttigieg could have come to Silicon Valley after graduating from Harvard as many Ivy League graduates do.In other words, in their eyes, Buttigieg is like them.“There’s a big move on the Democratic side to more heavily regulate tech, and that hasn’t been part of Buttigieg’s message,” said Raphael Sonenshein, executive director of the Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs at California State University, Los Angeles. “His message is consistent with innovation and forward-looking technology. He has not given the impression that he would threaten their interests.”While he hasn’t said much about competition and antitrust, Buttigieg has focused on improving regulations as opposed to breaking up big tech.“We’re going to need to empower the FTC to be able to intervene, including blocking or reversing mergers, in cases where there’s anti-competitive behavior by tech companies,” he said in a CNN town hall in April, referring to the Federal Trade Commission.Buttigieg was his high school’s valedictorian and went on to Harvard, where he befriended two roommates of future Facebook Inc. CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and was one of the first 300 users on the social media platform. He was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford, joined McKinsey & Co. as a consultant, and volunteered for Barack Obama’s tech-savvy 2008 presidential campaign before joining the U.S. Navy Reserve and serving in Afghanistan.His relationship with Zuckerberg persisted. Zuckerberg, 35, visited South Bend in 2017 while doing research for his philanthropic organization, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, and got a personal tour from Buttigieg. That relationship lasted into this year, when Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, recommended two people that Buttigieg ultimately hired for his campaign. Ben LaBolt, a spokesman for Zuckerberg and Chan, said the couple hasn’t yet decided whom to support for president.The Golden StateCalifornia voters have an unusually large influence in choosing the party’s nominee this cycle. The state primary next year is in March instead of its previous June slot and its donors contributed 1 of every 5 dollars raised by the party’s presidential candidates in the first six months of this year, data from the Center for Responsive Politics show.Buttigieg is second only to home-state senator Kamala Harris in the percentage of his campaign money that comes from California. Harris got 45% of her donations from Californians, Buttigieg got 22%.Harris, who was the state’s attorney general, raised $1 million from California lawyers, more than twice as much as any other candidate. She was also the top recipient of donations from employees of the entertainment industry. But California employees of tech companies, including giants like Facebook, Amazon.com Inc. and Microsoft Corp., backed Buttigieg more than any other candidate.Silicon Valley bundlers -- fundraisers who gather money from numerous employees of a firm -- have raised concerns about both Warren and Senator Bernie Sanders, who are relying primarily on small-dollar contributions from online donors.Warren is particularly thorny for the tech industry. She has vowed that she will not meet with big donors who want to “buy access” -- and perhaps more troubling for them, has promised to break up big technology companies. Some technology workers are contributing to Warren and Sanders, but few are writing the $2,800 checks that Buttigieg and Biden are relying on, likely because they’ve been quieter on the question of how to handle big tech.Buttigieg is positioning himself as a younger alternative to 76-year-old Biden. Like Biden, he has not embraced the progressive wing’s Medicare for All, instead proposing government-run health care “to those who want it,” without eliminating private insurance.In other areas, he hasn’t taken many unique stances, but his Midwestern and military background seeps into some plans. An issue page on his campaign website is simply called “Unleash rural opportunity,” and he has proposed eliminating some student debt in exchange for national service.Paul Holland, a California venture capitalist and fundraiser for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign, said he believes a moderate has the best chance of winning. In his circles, Biden hasn’t attracted the same kind of enthusiastic support that other candidates have.“It’s Mayor Pete and Cory Booker who are getting most of the attention,” he said.Buttigieg himself drew the contrast between his candidacy and Biden’s during a Marin County event.“Every time we’ve won in our party it’s been with a candidate with new ideas, who hasn’t been on the scene for too long,” Buttigieg said. “That’s what works. Also, Americans are most likely to support the opposite of what’s in the Oval Office.”Among Buttigieg’s donors are Ron Conway, an investor who has guided San Francisco mayors to back tech-friendly policies; Scott Belsky, the chief product officer and executive vice president at Adobe Inc.; Tony Xu, CEO of Doordash Inc.; David Marcus, the head of Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency project and Wendy Schmidt, wife of former Google CEO Eric Schmidt.Buttigieg’s fundraising has been prodigious, but he’s still behind in national polls. He stands at just 5% in the RealClearPolitics national average, compared with 26% for Biden. And that raises pragmatic questions about who can win the Democratic nomination.“Even with his flaws, Biden is the guy who’s probably going to satisfy the moderates,” Holland said.To contact the reporters on this story: Bill Allison in Washington DC at email@example.com;Jeffrey Taylor in San Francisco at firstname.lastname@example.org;Sophie Alexander in San Francisco at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Wendy Benjaminson at firstname.lastname@example.org, Peter EichenbaumFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Casino, the French retailer, has moved to further boost its financial position by raising €1.5bn in bank loans and extending its debt maturities for four years. The company said after the market closed on Tuesday that it is raising €1.5bn in new financing in order to refinance part of its existing debt. This is contingent on Casino raising at least €1bn by May 2020, either through the new financings or from the proceeds of asset disposals.
Elsewhere on Tuesday... -- Meet the man behind the wealth tax -- Merv gets it wrong, again -- Frat-house hedge fund ponzi More from the Financial Times Further reading Further reading Further reading Further ...
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- Judging by the rally in the S&P 500 Index on Monday, it would be hard to know that this week is perhaps the most important of the year for equities in terms of fundamentals — and the news likely won’t be all good. That just shows how much of a grip the U.S.-China trade talks have on traders.The catalyst for the gains was some positive, albeit guarded, comments out of both China and the U.S. that talks aimed at reaching the first part of an initial trade deal are advancing. The absolute lack of details doesn’t really matter; it’s the lack of animosity in the rhetoric that traders found encouraging. There’s no question that the trade war has taken a toll on the global economy, and this week investors will likely find out just how lasting the damage will be when a large swath of companies post third-quarter results. Through Friday, some 15% of the S&P 500, or 77 members, had reported and their earnings came in about 2% above consensus estimates, driven by strong results from health-care and consumer-discretionary companies, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch. This week, though, a whopping 36% of S&P 500 members will report results, led by a number of bellwether companies such as Amazon.com Inc. and Microsoft Corp. that have led stocks higher this year, as well as some key companies that are seen as referendums on the economy, such as Boeing Co. and Caterpillar Inc. There are a couple of things to keep in mind. The first is that if results come in as expected for the third quarter, which is an aggregate drop in earnings of 4%, it would be the first time since the period between Sept. 30, 2015 and June 30, 2016 that the S&P 500 posted three straight declines in profits, according to FactSet. The second is perhaps more important — namely, that this is the quarter companies generally start to provide more firm guidance for the following year. As I have previously written, there’s a good chance that estimates of 10% earnings growth are too high, especially with the International Monetary Fund last week cutting its global gross domestic product forecast for 2019 to an anemic 3% and a still sluggish 3.4% in 2020. Analysts last week lowered their estimates for combined S&P 500 earnings in 2020 by almost $1, to $178.40 a share, according to Bloomberg News. The 0.5% reduction was the biggest for any week since January. This wouldn’t be a problem if stocks were cheap, but they’re not with the S&P 500 trading at about 20 times earnings, having risen from about 16 times in early January.THE BOND MARKET’S RED SEAThe government bond market was a sea of red on Monday, with yields rising in such major markets as the U.S., the euro zone, U.K. and Japan. Before concluding that the jump means bond traders feel the global economy is poised to turn a corner on what is likely to be only a minor agreement between the U.S. and China on trade, consider that the global government yield curve remains inverted. Government debt due in one to three years yields 0.37 percentage point more than debt maturing in seven to 10 years, on average, according to the ICE Bank of America Merrill Lynch indexes. “The fact of the matter is you have the two largest, most relevant superpowers — the U.S. and China — still locked in negotiations which seem to have no near-term resolution in sight,” Ian Lyngen, BMO Capital Market’s head of rates strategy, told Bloomberg News. The just-concluded IMF meetings in Washington made clear that finance ministers from around the world are still reluctant to do what most market participants say is needed to jolt the global economy out of a synchronized slowdown. So while they talked about the need for more fiscal stimulus, there’s little agreement on how to do so.CANADA’S DOLLAR APPRECIATES In the foreign-exchange market, the default is to judge the performance of a currency against the dollar. This makes sense because the greenback is far and away the world’s dominant reserve currency. But doing so sometimes doesn’t provide a complete picture. That may be the case with the Canadian dollar. It’s actually one of the stronger currencies since Oct. 9, appreciating about 1.90% versus the greenback. But that perhaps says more about the U.S. currency’s broad weakness over that period than it does about trader sentiment toward Canada, where the political landscape has become much more muddied. In fact, voters were headed to the polls Monday in what was being forecast as a close election that might see embattled Prime Minister Justin Trudeau retain power, but lose his parliamentary majority and force him to rely on a left-leaning party to survive a second term, according to Bloomberg News. The uncertainty may be one reason Canada’s dollar has appreciated less than 0.1% against a basket of developed-market peers since Oct. 9. A government headed by Trudeau’s Liberal Party but propped up by the New Democratic Party might be a blow to Canada’s energy sector, Bloomberg News reported. The NDP is anti-pipeline, which is a problem for markets given that the country is already suffering from reduced oil prices due to pipeline bottlenecks.PROTESTS ROCK CHILEEmerging markets have been on an upswing lately, with both the MSCI indexes of equities and currencies rising to their highest since early August. But the rising EM tide isn’t lifting all boats. Financial markets in Chile are getting smacked, with the country gripped by what Bloomberg News describes as its worst civil unrest since the nation returned to democracy more than three decades ago. It’s so bad that President Sebastian Pinera declared a state of emergency Friday and called on the army to restore order. The nation’s benchmark IPSA index of equities fell 5%, the most since November 2017 and led by retail companies at risk of looting and the utilities sector. Chile’s peso lost 2% of its value. Chile is important to global markets for one big reason, which is that it’s the world’s largest producer of copper. Workers at BHP Ltd.’s Escondida mine, the world’s largest copper operation, were due to hold a “warning stoppage” for 10 hours starting late Monday or early on Tuesday in solidarity with protests taking place across the country, and an umbrella group of unions and mining federations was calling for a general mining strike on Oct. 23. Copper futures climbed to the highest in more than a month in New York.TEA LEAVESThe question of whether the universally strong U.S. housing data for August was an aberration was partly answered last week when the Commerce Department said housing starts tumbled a greater-than-forecast 9.4% in September after soaring 15.1% the prior month. Another piece to the puzzle will be revealed Tuesday when the National Association of Realtors releases its report on existing home sales for September. The median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News is for a decline of 0.3%, following a 1.3% jump in August. There’s no question the big drop in mortgage rates has given the residential real estate market a boost, but recent reports showing pressure on consumer confidence and sentiment, along with a drop in retail sales suggest the lift may have only been due to fence sitters jumping into the market rather a sign that there’s dome deep pool of buyers.DON’T MISSNormal Yield Curve Isn't Economic Green Light: Mohamed El-ErianWhat Can Possibly Go Wrong for Sterling?: Marcus AshworthSaudi Arabia's Best Bet Is to Crash the Oil Price: Julian LeeAuthers' Newsletter: Following the Money Leads to a Grim OutlookThe World Economy Is Stumbling Toward Disaster: EditorialTo contact the author of this story: Robert Burgess at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Beth Williams at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Robert Burgess is an editor for Bloomberg Opinion. He is the former global executive editor in charge of financial markets for Bloomberg News. As managing editor, he led the company’s news coverage of credit markets during the global financial crisis.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.