AAPL - Apple Inc.

NasdaqGS - NasdaqGS Real-time price. Currency in USD
262.64
-1.83 (-0.69%)
At close: 4:00PM EST

263.55 +0.91 (0.35%)
Pre-market: 8:13AM EST

Stock chart is not supported by your current browser
Previous close264.47
Open263.75
Bid263.63 x 800
Ask263.80 x 800
Day's range262.23 - 264.88
52-week range142.00 - 264.88
Volume22,395,556
Avg. volume26,025,623
Market cap1.187T
Beta (3Y monthly)1.25
PE ratio (TTM)22.09
EPS (TTM)11.89
Earnings date27 Jan 2020 - 31 Jan 2020
Forward dividend & yield3.08 (1.16%)
Ex-dividend date2019-11-07
1y target est255.51
  • Apple Mulls Bundling Digital Subscriptions to Woo Subscribers
    Bloomberg

    Apple Mulls Bundling Digital Subscriptions to Woo Subscribers

    Nov.14 -- Apple Inc. is considering bundling its paid internet services in a bid to gain more subscribers, according to people familiar with the matter. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has more on "Bloomberg Technology."

  • Why Cyber Monday is more important than Black Friday
    Yahoo Finance

    Why Cyber Monday is more important than Black Friday

    As it’s becoming easier for consumers to shop online rather than in stores, results from a new Deloitte survey results show that Cyber Monday is more relevant than Black Friday.

  • Financial Times

    FirstFT: Today’s top stories

    FT subscribers can click here to receive FirstFT every day by email. How well did you keep up with the news this week? Take our quiz . Nigel Farage claimed Boris Johnson’s allies offered the Brexit party ...

  • Financial Times

    Apple aims for streaming big bang with Plepler talks

    When Richard Plepler left his perch as head of HBO in February, it signalled the end of an era for a cable network synonymous with high-quality television. In recent months, the 59-year-old magnate has ...

  • Financial Times

    Moscow diary — apple season in the shadow of war

    When a man I had never met offered to introduce me to second world war veterans in Russia, I jumped at the opportunity. Little did I know that at the end of my first day in the country his wife would be whipping me with birch twigs in a small cabin on the edge of a rural forest. “Winter is coming,” my host Sasha intones (I’m willing to bet good money he has never watched Game of Thrones).

  • Democracy Would Solve Hong Kong Problems, Taiwan Contender Says
    Bloomberg

    Democracy Would Solve Hong Kong Problems, Taiwan Contender Says

    (Bloomberg) -- The candidate representing Taiwan’s China-friendly opposition party in January’s presidential race called for free elections in Hong Kong, as the city continued to be roiled by some of the most severe protests in its history.Speaking in an interview on Thursday in Taipei, Kuomintang candidate Han Kuo-yu urged China to grant universal suffrage to Hong Kong by allowing democratic votes for the city’s legislators and chief executive, who are currently chosen through a complex process effectively controlled by Beijing. While the independence sought by some protesters will never be tolerated by China, Han said many of the city’s problems would be solved if China would abide by the concept of “Hong Kong people ruling Hong Kong.”The unrest in Hong Kong, which has been effectively shut down for a fourth straight day, has become a closely watched issue in the run-up to Taiwan’s Jan. 11 presidential election. Polls show pro-independence President Tsai Ing-wen with a commanding lead in the race, a bounce that coincided with her vocal support of pro-democracy protesters who began hitting the streets in early June to oppose Beijing’s tightening grip over the city.Taiwan’s Tsai Rises From Ashes With a Hand From Hong KongChina and the Beijing-backed administration in Hong Kong has refused to meet a demand by protesters to nominate and elect their own leaders. The standoff has left the city paralyzed by increasingly violent demonstrations.While Han has moderated some of his pro-China stances as the violence in Hong Kong continues, the two candidates remain sharply divided over Taiwan’s future.Tsai has refused to rule out a formal declaration of independence, a prospect many Taiwanese would view as simply an acknowledgment of reality -- but which Beijing deems unacceptable. She has also used the protests to argue that Taiwan’s democracy could never survive integration with the mainland, and that it should deepen its relationship with “like-minded nations” such as the U.S. instead.Han warned in the interview that whatever the opinion of Taiwan’s public, its leaders must proceed cautiously. Officially declaring independence is a “red line” for Beijing, he said, adding that it could lead to an outright war. Instead, Han said he supports an indefinite extension of the status quo: informal economic and political ties with China, but within a context of official disagreement over Taiwan’s status.‘We Have Nothing’“If the 23 milllion people of Taiwan came to a consensus and voted for independence in a referendum, they would have to deal with the military and political consequences,” Han said in the interview. “You can’t avoid it. We don’t have any resources. We have nothing.”In a January speech Chinese president Xi Jinping declared that its “one country, two systems” governing model, which grants limited autonomy under the umbrella of mainland control, is the only future arrangement the Communist Party views as acceptable for Taiwan. He also said Taiwan “must and will be” reunited with China, and that he would “reserve the option of taking all necessary measures” to head off what the mainland government considers separatism.Han, whose KMT party is the modern incarnation of the nationalist government that ruled China until 1949, said he believes he still has a strong chance of victory.“Many polls are questionable,” he said, and may be used “as a tool to influence voters, to influence people’s judgment.” Tsai leads Han by about 15 percentage points, according to an Apple Daily opinion poll published Tuesday.Horse RacingWhile Taiwan’s political future often dominates public debate, its export-dependent economy is currently confronting more immediate challenges.The U.S.-China trade war, and efforts by the Trump administration to decouple the U.S. technology industry from the world’s second-largest economy, have created uncertainty for Taiwanese companies that specialize in linking Chinese factories to Silicon Valley giants. Companies, including Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., the main assembler of Apple Inc.’s iPhones and iPads, are investing billions of dollars relocating production out of China to Taiwan and Southeast Asia in order to avoid U.S. tariffs.To prosper amid the U.S.-China turmoil, Han said Taiwan should attempt to create free-trade zones in the southern cities of Taichung and Kaohshiung, where he serves as mayor. He also opened the door to legalizing gambling if he’s elected, suggesting Taiwan could join Hong Kong in allowing betting on horse racing, and suggested starting a NT$10 trillion sovereign wealth fund.“Singapore and Abu Dhabi have sovereign wealth funds,” he said. “The Republic of China can have one too.”(Updates with details on Hong Kong unrest.)To contact the reporters on this story: Samson Ellis in Taipei at sellis29@bloomberg.net;Matthew Campbell in Singapore at mcampbell39@bloomberg.net;Adela Lin in Taipei at alin95@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Daniel Ten Kate at dtenkate@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Intro To The 4th Revolution
    Zacks

    Intro To The 4th Revolution

    Dan Laboe kicks of his new series, The 4th Revolution, where he discusses new technology and how it will impact the markets.

  • Google Checking Account, Facebook Cross-Platform Payments
    Zacks

    Google Checking Account, Facebook Cross-Platform Payments

    Big tech is jumping into the payments business in a big way.

  • Bloomberg

    Yang Proposes Tax on Digital Ads in Swipe at Facebook, Google

    (Bloomberg) -- Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang proposed a tax on digital ads that takes aim at the revenue models of companies such as Facebook Inc. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google.Along with a proposal for a cabinet-level secretary of technology, the value-added tax was among a series of ideas for regulating privacy, antitrust issues and digital platforms’ impact on democracy released Thursday by the former tech entrepreneur.“Digital giants such as Facebook, Amazon, Google and Apple have scale and power that renders them more quasi-sovereign states than conventional companies,” said Yang, who founded Venture for America, a fellowship program for people who want to work in start-ups.The proposal would use revenue from the tax to grant “a slice of every digital ad” to those whose data is used to deliver the advertisements, while also ensuring customers can opt out of data collection, have their existing information deleted and move their data between rival services.Tech giants such as Facebook and Google have risen to the heights of the digital economy by helping companies target ads to users based on the data collected from social media and search platforms. Yang’s proposal would aim to restructure the sector, and the tax would be part of an explicit effort “to incentivize companies to shift to an ad-free, subscription model.”Yang has made his tech experience key to his outsider presidential bid, focusing on the issue of automation and his desire to respond to it by guaranteeing Americans a basic income regardless of their work. He is polling at around 2.8%, far behind leaders such as Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, according to Real Clear Politics’ average of polls.Plan CriticizedNetChoice, a lobbying group that counts Facebook and Google as members, criticized Yang’s proposal.“The current online advertising model enables consumers to access high quality content and sophisticated services for free,” NetChoice Vice President Carl Szabo said in a statement. “Yang’s policy would create more paywalls around content and diminish the presence of free services.”In addition to the tax, Yang would create a government Department of Technology focused on artificial intelligence and based in Silicon Valley, alongside a department of the “Attention Economy that focuses specifically on how to responsibly design and use smartphones, social media, gaming, and chat apps.”Yang would also amend a liability shield that tech companies prize because it stops lawsuits over content that others publish on their platforms. The changes weren’t detailed but were listed among measures designed to combat online misinformation, including a requirement that companies such as Facebook disclose their algorithms publicly, or to the Department of the Attention Economy.He also proposed making sure that companies such as Amazon.com Inc. provide “an even playing field for competitor products or services on their platforms” to assuage antitrust concerns. The e-commerce giant has been criticized for competing against the third-party merchants that also sell through its site. The proposal echoes one from Senator Elizabeth Warren, who would break up the company.Yang suggested new rules around cryptocurrencies and “free” games that often push purchases during play.To contact the reporter on this story: Ben Brody in Washington at btenerellabr@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Sara Forden at sforden@bloomberg.net, ;Wendy Benjaminson at wbenjaminson@bloomberg.net, Max Berley, Steve GeimannFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Bloomberg

    Is Your TV Service a Streaming, Confusing Mess, Too?

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- When I read my colleague Tara Lachapelle’s column on Wednesday about how the “great unbundling” of cable television could turn into the “great re-bundling,” I had to chuckle. It was inevitable that once consumers got a taste of what an unbundled world looked like, they would begin to appreciate some of the virtues of the once-despised cable bundle.Yet not many people realized that a decade or so ago, when talk about a-la-carte television (as unbundling was then called) was all the rage. Back then, it seemed so simple. As cable bills grew more expensive, consumers questioned why they were forced to take — and pay for — 300 channels when they only really watched 9 or 10. Wouldn’t it make more sense to just get the stations they cared about? More to the point, wouldn’t it be cheaper once they were rid of the 290 stations they didn’t want? Obviously, the bundle was the problem.In Washington, two successive Republican chairmen of the Federal Communications Commission, Michael Powell and Kevin Martin, were big advocates of a-la-carte television back in the 2000s. Gene Kimmelman, an executive with Consumers Union, the publisher of Consumer Reports,  told me in 2007 that a-la-carte television “would create marketplace pressure to reduce prices.”  I wrote about cable television frequently in the mid-2000s, and the reader feedback was almost unanimous. “What we really need is a la carte TV,” one reader wrote. “That way I can buy what I want rather than what someone forces into my TV.”The one person I knew who never bought the hype was a Wall Street analyst named Craig Moffett. Today, Moffett is a partner at MoffettNathanson LLC, a research boutique he co-founded in 2013. When I first got to know him, he was with Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. LLC(1) covering the telecom and cable industries. I recently went back and looked at his old research — not only because it has turned out to be prophetic, but because a-la-carte television is a good example of why we should be careful of what we wish for.What Moffett understood, and unbundling’s proponents didn’t, was that the economics of cable was, in one important sense, illusory. Cable companies paid stations based on the number of total subscribers — not on the number of people who actually watched. This system had two big benefits. It allowed niche stations without a lot of advertising to reap enough revenue to make a go of it. And it allowed the more popular stations to charge more for advertising than if they were unbundled.Without the cable bundle, Moffett said, many of the niche channels wouldn’t survive. And the bigger ones would have to charge so much that it wouldn’t be long before consumers were paying more for their 10 channels than they had for 300.One example he used in a note to clients in 2007 was Black Entertainment Television.  Without the cable bundle, Moffett estimated that BET would need to raise its subscription price by 588% to maintain its revenue at the time — and that would have only been possible if every African-American household in the U.S. subscribed. “If just half opted in — a wildly optimistic scenario — the price would rise by 1,200%,” he wrote.Moffett saw early on that streaming, barely a blip on the horizon, would disrupt the bundle. During this past decade, millions of American households have cut the cord. Perhaps more important, according to one survey, almost three-fourths of all U.S. households subscribe to at least one streaming service like Netflix or Hulu.Streaming obviously has a lot of upside. The quality of a typical, streamed TV show today is superior to the vast majority of shows the networks used to offer. Being able to watch on demand is a blessing. The fact that shows on Amazon Prime or Netflix have no ads, well, who doesn’t love that?But there have also been downsides, just as Moffett predicted. Let’s face it: you’re not really saving money. I pay $15.99 a month for a Netflix premium subscription, $11.99 for Hulu premium (which means no ads), $14.99 for HBO NOW, $11 for Showtime, and $4.99 for the new Apple TV service. If I decide to add Disney+ that’ll be another $6.99 a month.Because I’m a sports fan, I need a way to get ESPN and ESPN 2, which remain tethered to the bundle because their costs are so enormous they would simply be unaffordable as stand-alone streaming services. I’ve been using PlayStation Vue’s mini-bundle, which costs $54.99. Sony Corp. recently announced it will be ending the service at the end of January, so I’ll have to find a replacement. But they’re all in the same basic price range.When you add it all up — something I’d avoided doing until I wrote this column — it comes to $113.95. A month. Ouch. And that doesn’t include the $12.99 a month I pay to be an Amazon Prime member, which gives me access to shows like “Fleabag” and “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.”Here’s another data point. Remember Moffett’s prediction about what would happen if BET left the bundle? We now have the proof.  Cable subscribers pay 27 cents a month for BET, according to research from Kagan, a media research group within S&P Global Market Intelligence. A subscriber to its spanking new streaming app, BET Plus: Try $9.99. So much for all the money we were going to save.The other problem, as Tara noted in her column, is the frustration that has come with dealing with all these different services. It means “knowing which TV programs and movies reside where, having to toggle among those different apps — which isn’t as smooth as simply channel-surfing — and managing multiple monthly subscriptions,” Tara wrote.Wouldn’t you know it: Moffett saw this coming too. In 2006, he wrote a tongue-in-cheek note to clients from sometime in the future. Streaming, he predicted, had become a burden:The complexity was overwhelming. Forgotten passwords. Balky navigation. And lord, were the subscription fees astronomical, what with the average consumer having to sign up for six or seven different companies’ offerings in order to satisfy all the different members of the family.The solution, Moffett projected, would come from a clever entrepreneur with a once-in-a-lifetime idea:What if we could aggregate all the channels in one place? Disney, Fox, Turner, ABC, NBC, YouTube, CBS, MTV, the whole works, accessible from a single source. For one monthly subscription, we could bring viewers all of this amazing content, smoothly and easily! One navigation framework. A single interface. One bill. All the channels at your fingertips. And even huge libraries of content, available on demand!!!We’re not there yet. But we’re heading in that direction. It won’t be cheap. But I have my own prediction: This time around, nobody’s going to be complaining about the bundle.(1) The firm is now known as AllianceBernstein L.P.To contact the author of this story: Joe Nocera at jnocera3@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Timothy L. O'Brien at tobrien46@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Joe Nocera is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering business. He has written business columns for Esquire, GQ and the New York Times, and is the former editorial director of Fortune. His latest project is the Bloomberg-Wondery podcast "The Shrink Next Door."For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Disney, Apple Join Streaming War, Netflix Might Take a Backseat
    Zacks

    Disney, Apple Join Streaming War, Netflix Might Take a Backseat

    Video-streaming space gets increasingly intense as Disney and Apple join the bandwagon amid flaring up price war and content exclusivity.

  • When is a Stock Truly a Value?
    Zacks

    When is a Stock Truly a Value?

    With cyclical stocks, investors must look deeper to figure out the value of the earnings and revenue.

  • Zacks Market Edge Highlights: JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup, Apple and Alphabet
    Zacks

    Zacks Market Edge Highlights: JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup, Apple and Alphabet

    Zacks Market Edge Highlights: JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup, Apple and Alphabet

  • Apple Gets Rare Sell Rating as Maxim Warns About iPhone Trends
    Bloomberg

    Apple Gets Rare Sell Rating as Maxim Warns About iPhone Trends

    (Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. received a rare bear call on Thursday, after the company was downgraded to sell from hold at Maxim Group, which cited the potential for lower iPhone revenue over the next year.Analyst Nehal Chokshi forecast weakness in both unit sales and average selling prices, citing an analysis of a proprietary survey.The survey data “lead us to expect 14% below consensus iPhone revenue in F2Q20 & 6% below for FY20,” the firm wrote to clients. It expects iPhone revenue will fall 5% in Apple’s fiscal 2020, and also anticipates that Apple’s operating profits will fall 2% year-over-year “as ongoing growth in services and wearables will only partially offset iPhone declines.”Maxim established a $190 price target on the stock, which implies downside of nearly 30% from Apple’s Wednesday record close of $264.47. Shares of Apple have climbed more than 50% from a June low and were little changed on Thursday.Sell ratings on Apple are somewhat rare, although the ranks of bears has been growing this year. According to data compiled by Bloomberg, Maxim is the sixth firm to recommend selling the stock, compared with the 27 firms with a buy rating and the 15 with a hold-equivalent view. The average price target on Apple shares is $255, or nearly 4% below current levels.The cautious view about the iPhone is also something of an anomaly on Wall Street. Earlier this week, Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. -- the assembler for most iPhones and iPads -- reported earnings that beat expectations, in what was seen as a proxy for solid iPhone 11 demand. Apple’s recent results also pointed to strong demand, and there is a good deal of optimism for 2020, when the Cupertino, California-based company is expected to release a 5G version of the product. Last week, BofA wrote that Apple shares still had “significant room for upside,” given the potential of the next product cycle.According to a Bloomberg MODL estimate, Apple is expected to ship 190.1 million iPhones over its 2020 fiscal year, with an average selling price of $750.71. In 2019, nearly 55% of Apple’s total revenue was derived from the iPhone, per data compiled by Bloomberg.(Updates stock to maket open in fourth paragraph)To contact the reporter on this story: Ryan Vlastelica in New York at rvlastelica1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Catherine Larkin at clarkin4@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Bloomberg

    How Amazon’s Klutzy Politicking Backfired in Seattle

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- For a company that is so good at so many things, Amazon is remarkably bad at politics.Exhibit A is the latest debacle in its hometown of Seattle, where the company’s push to seat a more politically moderate city council backfired. Campaign cash aimed at producing a less tax-happy council triggered the opposite result and turned a socialist headed for defeat into a martyr.Amazon has never been known for subtlety. The $1.45 million it spread around in political contributions to City Council candidates not only set a record, but also changed the trajectory of the election. Polls showed that voters who were poised to replace some leftist council members changed course. After Amazon’s donations became public, they elected five of seven candidates opposed by a business coalition. One of them was Councilmember Kshama Sawant of the Socialist Alternative party, who declared her come-from-behind re-election victory in front of a giant red sign that declared, “Tax Amazon.” Which the newly Amazon-unfriendly council almost certainly will do.Amazon employs 54,000 people in Seattle and owns or occupies 47 buildings there. That’s made the city seem like the biggest company town in the U.S., and has probably blinded Amazon’s leaders to the angst and tumult they’ve unleashed in a place that’s become both more prosperous and less livable.Sawant, who managed less than 40% of the vote in the August primary, went so far as to call Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s founder and chief executive, “our enemy,” and described her victory as a win for working people against the world’s richest man.“Amazon overplayed their hand,” said Egan Orion, the candidate who lost to Sawant. “I wasn’t able to make my closing arguments. There was so much noise.”Once Amazon donated in such a big way, the race became nationalized. Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, the presidential candidates vying for the hearts of the Democratic Party’s left flank, chimed in via Twitter to trash the Amazon contributions.Here’s what Warren had to say:Here’s Sanders:Another winner, Tammy Morales, favors a bevy of local tax options to raise money for homeless services, housing and other needs. Her list includes revisiting an employee head tax similar to one Amazon successfully fought in 2018, plus a local estate tax and a tax on high salaries dubbed an “excess compensation tax.”Amazon has been trying to fine-tune its relationship with Seattle for years, and concern about relations with the City Council was among the reasons it announced in 2017 that it was looking for a second headquarters location — another endeavor that showcased the company’s limited political skills.That contest blew up in New York City when politicians and others protested the size of an Amazon enticement package — up to $3 billion in tax breaks and other incentives.In Seattle, Amazon had mostly maintained a quiet political presence until May 2018, when the City Council passed the Amazon Tax on larger companies, a head tax of $275 per employee.Amazon promptly announced that it would stop construction on one of its new buildings if the tax were imposed.The council then hastily repealed it when polls showed it could harm the council at the next election — the contest that ended so disastrously for the company this month.Starbucks, also headquartered in Seattle, took a different approach, donating a much smaller sum to the business campaign. A Starbucks executive also sent a letter to employees urging a vote for unspecified “change” and invited the public to have a cup of coffee. This was a subtle, defter move, in part because it was hard to tell exactly what the company was saying.At this juncture, perhaps after apologizing or remaining quiet a while, Amazon has a few choices. It could face probable new taxes gamely or think along the lines of Apple, which recently announced a $2.5 billion plan to ease the housing shortages and affordability crisis in California. Or take a page from Microsoft, the tech giant across Lake Washington from Amazon, which last winter offered a well received $500 million investment in affordable housing and homelessness relief across the region.To be fair, Amazon has invested in a homeless shelter in Seattle for families, Mary’s Place, which will eventually occupy eight floors in one of the new Amazon buildings. Mary’s Place does great work. But that answer to the enormous problem of homelessness and housing affordability now seems a trifle. The overall contribution to challenges facing the city is too small to those who believe Amazon needs to step up and invest in ways commensurate with its size and impact.To contact the author of this story: Joni Balter at jcbalter@gmail.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Jonathan Landman at jlandman4@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Joni Balter is a longtime Seattle columnist and writer who contributes to local NPR and PBS affiliates.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Facebook Pay Takes the Digital Payment Game a Notch Higher
    Zacks

    Facebook Pay Takes the Digital Payment Game a Notch Higher

    Facebook (FB) launches Facebook Pay that is likely to stir-up competition in the digital payments space.

  • Investing.com

    StockBeat: Apple Drifts Lower on Rare Sell Rating

    Investing.com – Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) fell on Thursday after one Wall Street analyst suggested the stock may be running too hot, slapping a sell rating on the tech giant on expectations that sales of its latest slate of iPhones will come up short.

  • Elizabeth Warren Slams Goldman Over Apple Card Bias Furor
    Bloomberg

    Elizabeth Warren Slams Goldman Over Apple Card Bias Furor

    (Bloomberg) -- Presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren blasted Goldman Sachs’s response to claims of bias against women applying for the Apple Card, as complaints reignited a sweeping debate over the role of algorithms in consumer finance.Goldman, which oversees banking decisions on the popular card, has responded to the flood of criticism by asking aggrieved customers to request a second look at their credit limits.“Yeah, great. So let’s just tell every woman in America, ‘You might have been discriminated against, on an unknown algorithm, it’s on you to telephone Goldman Sachs and tell them to straighten it out,’” Warren, who’s vying for the Democratic nomination, said in an interview from Concord, New Hampshire. “Sorry guys, that’s not how it works.”The flashy new partnership between Apple Inc. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. has been embroiled in controversy in recent days after social media postings fueled by a tech entrepreneur and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak highlighted unequal treatment in how the card handed out credit lines, sparking a probe by a New York regulator.The 70-year-old senator from Massachusetts conceived of and helped establish the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau under President Barack Obama and has frequently spoken out on issues tied to access to credit for consumers. Apple and Goldman Sachs are caught up in a growing debate over whether lenders unintentionally discriminate when they use complex models for lending money to Americans. Consumer advocates argue computers can produce biased results even without information on race and gender from credit applicants.“We’re all beginning to understand better that algorithms are only as good as the data that gets packed into them,” Warren said. “And if a lot of discriminatory data gets packed in, in other words, if that’s how the world works, and the algorithm is doing nothing but sucking out information about how the world works, then the discrimination is perpetuated.”It’s the company’s responsibility to come forward with the information about how that algorithm was designed and the exact impact of it, she said. “And if they can’t do it, then they need to pull it down.”Ron Wyden, a Democrat from Oregon and ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, said Wednesday he’s looking into the validity of claims of bias against women in applications for the Apple Card.Goldman’s Response“Goldman Sachs has not and will never make decisions based on factors like gender, race, age, sexual orientation or any other legally prohibited factors when determining credit worthiness,” a spokesman for the firm said. “For credit decisions we make, we can identify which factors from an individual’s credit report contribute to the outcome. We welcome a discussion of this topic with policy makers and regulators.”For banks, ditching the existing system of evaluating individual applicants in favor of a new process is a complicated endeavor. Financial industry regulations can discourage banks from extending loans to people deemed to be less creditworthy.With the current setup, it’s common for only one individual in a household to reap the benefit of spending and timely pay-down of borrowings. Policy makers point out that this tends to disadvantage women who are part of a joint account.One reason Goldman became a poster child for the issue is that the Apple Card, unlike offerings from much of the industry, doesn’t let households share accounts. That could lead to family members getting significantly different credit limits. On Wednesday, the firm said it will introduce that option.The Apple Card is part of a financial system known for its historic inequities, according to Mara Zepeda, one of the founding members of XXcelerate, which helps female entrepreneurs access financing.“The immediate story is this complicated rat’s nest of the algorithm,” Zepeda said. “Women want to see the financial-services industry listening to them, proactively reacting and reducing the disparity in the access to credit. If you served us equally, we’d be a customer. If you served us unequally, we’d be angry.”(Updates with comments in last two paragraphs.)To contact the reporters on this story: Sridhar Natarajan in New York at snatarajan15@bloomberg.net;Misyrlena Egkolfopoulou in Washington at megkolfopoul@bloomberg.net;Shahien Nasiripour in New York at snasiripour1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael J. Moore at mmoore55@bloomberg.net, David Scheer, Steve DicksonFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Apple Plans Mega Bundle of Music, News, TV as Early as 2020
    Bloomberg

    Apple Plans Mega Bundle of Music, News, TV as Early as 2020

    (Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. is considering bundling its paid internet services, including News+, Apple TV+ and Apple Music, as soon as 2020, in a bid to gain more subscribers, according to people familiar with the matter.The latest sign of this strategy is a provision that Apple included in deals with publishers that lets the iPhone maker bundle the News+ subscription service with other paid digital offerings, the people said. They asked not to be identified discussing private deals.Apple News+, which debuted in March, sells access to dozens of publications for $10 a month. It’s often called the “Netflix of News.” Apple keeps about half of the monthly subscription price, while magazines and newspapers pocket the other half.If Apple sold Apple News+ as part of a bundle with Apple TV+ and Apple Music, publishers would get less money because the cost of the news service would likely be reduced, the people said.As the smartphone market stagnates, Apple is seeking growth by selling online subscriptions to news, music, video and other content. This month, it launched Apple TV+ for $4.99 a month with shows from stars including Jennifer Aniston and Jason Momoa.Bundling these offerings could attract more subscribers, as Amazon.com Inc.’s Prime service has done. Apple is already experimenting with this kind of approach. It recently began offering a free Apple TV+ subscription to students who are Apple Music subscribers. Still, the company’s plans may change, given how complex deals like these can be.Some media executives say the amount they’ve received from Apple News+ so far has been less than expected. One publisher typically gets under $20,000 a month, less revenue than it saw from Texture, a previous iteration of the service that Apple acquired last year, one person said.Apple News+ offers dozens of magazines, like the New Yorker, GQ and People, as well as major newspapers such as The Wall Street Journal and the Los Angeles Times. Bloomberg Businessweek, owned by Bloomberg LP, also participates.It remains unclear whether publishers are seeing less revenue than they expected because Apple News+ has few subscribers, or because their content isn’t being widely read. Publishers share the remaining 50% of the revenue based on how much time Apple News+ subscribers spend reading their articles. Apple has not revealed subscriber numbers for Apple News+. The company recently expanded the service to Australia and the U.K.Advertisers have been less interested in Apple News+ because Apple’s restrictive data policy makes it difficult for marketers to target specific readers, one of the people said. Some publishers also would like Apple to share data about subscribers, like email addresses, which they could use to sell other offerings.As part of the contracts, media companies have the right to pull their magazines or newspapers from Apple News+ after a year if they’re unhappy with the service, one person said.The media industry was initially wary of Apple News+ before it launched, fearing their readers might cancel existing subscriptions and get their articles at a cheaper price from Apple. For that reason, some did not make all their articles or magazines available. Others, including the New York Times and the Washington Post, didn’t sign up.Still, some news executives are pleased with how Apple News+ has gone so far.“The financial results to date are consistent with our expectations,” Norm Pearlstine, the executive editor of the Los Angeles Times, said in a statement. “We are optimistic that they will continue to grow in the months and years ahead.”To contact the reporters on this story: Gerry Smith in New York at gsmith233@bloomberg.net;Mark Gurman in San Francisco at mgurman1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Nick Turner at nturner7@bloomberg.net, Alistair Barr, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Financial Times

    The age of data consent

    , some of the UK’s most popular health websites are sharing people’s sensitive data — including medical symptoms, diagnoses, drug names and menstrual and fertility information — without their consent, with companies ranging from ad-targeting giants such as Google, Amazon, Facebook and Oracle, to lesser-known data brokers. On Monday, the Wall Street Journal reported on a Google secret project to collect and analyse millions of Americans’ personal health data through a deal with Ascension, the second-largest hospital system in the US. that it claims will “advance science” by harvesting information from its massive base of iPhone users and Apple Watch wearers.