Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom RSS feed en Sun, 16 Jun 2019 19:31:18 +0100 Genera CMS (Proactiveinvestors) (Proactiveinvestors) <![CDATA[News - Space is the place... for capitalism ]]> A hundred years ago, John D. Rockefeller and Andrew Carnegie wrestled their way to become the two richest people in the known universe by harnessing new technologies in oil drilling and steel manufacturing. Now, Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk are part of a new generation of capitalists racing to invest their already huge wealth in rocket launch and satellite technology to propel themselves and their investors to further interstellar fame and fortune.

While many of the companies leading the way in the new space race are privately owned, there are many listed companies that are heavily involved in the wider industry and the repercussions for the existing satellite and communications industry is likely to be significant. 

So far in 2019, two rockets have launched that have potentially inflicted the first of a thousand mortal wounds for the current satellite industry – and that’s even before you include plans from Bezos’s Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN).

Best known of the new generation of space explorers is Musk’s SpaceX and its Starlink project, which aims to create a ‘constellation’ of satellites in a low orbit around the Earth designed to provide low-latency, high-bandwidth broadband services around the world — and make enough money for Musk to complete his real dream of sending humans to live on Mars.

Two weeks ago, via its Falcon 9 rocket, SpaceX launched the first 60 Starlink satellites and said it has the funding in place to build and launch enough satellites to begin using a network that it eventually foresees will number 11,943 satellites. 

Technology and manufacturing innovation

This is just one small step for the new breed of space racers as part of a giant technological leap that has not only excited public attention but also allowed them to get the jump on their old-school rivals - the simple concept of lowering costs. 

By standing on the shoulders of giants to make the most of the technology and expertise developed over several decades by state-funded research at NASA, the European Space Agency and Russia’s Roscosmos, SpaceX and others have also harnessed new manufacturing ideas and a modern recycling ethic. 

For example, the expense of thrusting a satellite weighing anything from six tonnes up to 11 tonnes into space are vast, so the ability of rocket companies such as SpaceX and Bezos’ Blue Origin to reuse their rockets again and again means they can reduce costs considerably. SpaceX was offering a launch discount of 40% compared to incumbents. 

The design of satellites themselves has also slimmed down costs. 

Low-earth orbit (LEO) microsatellites – such as the 10cm square CubeSats developed by NASA – are allowing the creation of low-earth orbit ‘mega-constellations’ to provide wide coverage above the planet.

Starlink's flat-panel design allows for a dense launch stack to take full advantage of Falcon 9’s launch capabilities

— SpaceX (@SpaceX) May 24, 2019

Built on assembly lines using mass-produced parts, these LEO satellites have a shorter lifespan but are a thousandth of the weight of a traditional satellite. Not only does their size mean many more can be launched at once, their cost at around US$1mln is a fraction of the US$220-$250mln Inmarsat paid for just one of its GlobalXpress satellites.

Starlink’s flat-panel design, for example, ensured each satellite weighed approximately 227kg, allowing SpaceX to take full advantage of its rocket’s capacity.

Bezos, Musk …and Wyler?

Although currently playing catch-up with Musk’s SpaceX, Bezos’ has two irons in the space fire and the funds to make them reality. 

As well as his private Blue Origin side project, regulatory filings recently revealed Amazon’s Project Kuiper plans, named after the Kuiper Belt that spins around our solar system. 

Amazon’s Kuiper plan for a 3,236-strong LEO satellite network is designed to serve around 95% of the world's population and make the retailer a global internet service provider.

“There are billions of people around the world who lack access to broadband internet. Our vision is to provide low-latency, high-speed broadband connectivity to many of these unserved and underserved communities around the world,” Amazon said. 

However, this is a long-term project and is expected to take many years. 

Challenging this high-profile, low-orbit pair is US- and UK-based OneWeb, a start-up that in February launched the first of 600 LEO satellites that will begin providing high-speed internet access by 2021.

That same month OneWeb, which was founded by industry veteran Greg Wyler, raised $1.25bn from investors including WeWork backer SoftBank to take its total funding close to $3.5bn. 

Fuelled by this cash injection and a manufacturing joint venture with Airbus SE (EPA:AIR), OneWeb targets the launch of 30 satellites per rocket by the end of this year.

This trio are far from lost in space, as more than 600 companies have drummed up around almost US$18bn in investment in eight years, according to data from Northern Sky, of which US$7bn of that was raised in the past two years.

Introducing the 11 companies that will conduct #Moon2024 studies and produce human lander prototypes that will help us put @NASA_Astronauts on the Moon in five years:

— NASA (@NASA) May 16, 2019 Earth-bound rivals?

In the medium term, this mushrooming of new industry entrants has weighed on sentiment around the incumbent satellite industry players, most of which are less fleet of foot than these newcomers. 

The cheap bulk supply of capacity, for example, has rendered legacy satellites increasingly obsolete, with the decline in satellite capacity prices having accelerated over the past year, with a global average decline of 18%, Northern Sky recently revealed. 

Amid such issues, the likes of London-listed Inmarsat Plc (LON:ISAT) and France’s Eutelsat Communications SA (EPA:ETL) have struggled.

Inmarsat is being taken private after a frustrating ups-and-downs in recent years, with a similar ride for Luxembourg-headquartered SES SA (EPA:SESG) and Eutelsat, though smaller UK rival Avanti Communications Group plc (LON:AVN) has seen its share price fall to earth like one of Musk’s reusable rockets under the heavy load of its debts. 

Others have weathered the shifting sands to rally in the past year or so, with US-based Intelsat SA (NYSE:I) and Iridium Communications Inc (NASDAQ:IRDM). 

Interstellar investment returns?

For those which can dodge the financial asteroids, analysts see opportunities for returns of 10-times and greater in the long-term.

While relatively small markets today, Goldman Sachs has flagged up to its clients that the lowering barriers to participation in the space economy from falling costs will make new industries like space tourism, asteroid mining, and on-orbit manufacturing viable in the more distant future. 

“We believe space mining is still a long way from commercial viability, but it has the potential to further ease access to space and facilitate an in-space manufacturing economy,” Goldman analysts said in 2017, noting estimates for around $25-50bn worth of platinum that could be harvested from a single asteroid. 

Analysts at Morgan Stanley have also seen the potential for huge structural change that some recent technological developments could bring, seeing parallels with Elisha Otis’s 1854 demonstration of the first “safety elevator” that seemed insignificant to the public at the time but 20 years later saw every multistory building in New York, Boston, and Chicago constructed around a central elevator shaft.

Reusable rocket technology may provide a similar turning point, suggest Morgan Stanley analysts. “We think of reusable rockets as an elevator to low Earth orbit (LEO),” they said. “Just as further innovation in elevator construction was required before today's skyscrapers could dot the skyline, so too will opportunities in space mature because of access and falling launch costs.”

Morgan Stanley last year estimated that the global space industry could generate revenue of $1.1trn or more in 2040, up from $350bn currently. 

The investment bank sees the most significant short- and medium-term opportunities in satellite broadband internet access, estimating that satellite broadband will represent 50%-70% of the projected growth of the global space economy by 2040, with lower cost satellites helping to drive down the cost of data just as demand for that data explodes.

“The demand for data is growing at an exponential rate, while the cost of access to space (and, by extension, data) is falling by orders of magnitude," the analysts said. 

“We believe the largest opportunity comes from providing internet access to under- and unserved parts of the world, but there also is going to be increased demand for bandwidth from autonomous cars, the Internet of things, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and video.”

Investing for the future and the present

While many of the new satellite companies are privately owned, they are worth tracking ahead of potential IPOs and there are companies that provide products or services to the industry or are in joint ventures, such as Airbus’s manufacture of LEOs with OneWeb that claims to be able to turn out four satellites per day. 

US-listed Iridium Communications Inc (NASDAQ:IRDM) claims to have been “in LEO before LEO was cool” and has spent US$3bn refreshing its satellite fleet with its Iridium Next constellation of 66 small, interconnected mobile satellites that it says will offer coverage to 100% of the planet’s surface.

Questioning the cost-benefit of LEO deployment, European rival SES has been pushing the advantages of medium-Earth orbit (MEO) satellites as it says it can provide connectivity to around 3bn people currently without the internet from just the launch of the first seven super-powered MEO satellites in 2021. 

Boeing is the maker of the MEO satellites, which it says will employ its most-advanced digital technology and can be launched up to four at a time in a stacked configuration. 

Thales SA (EPA:HO) claims to be able to make LEO satellites, while Lockheed Martin Corporation (NYSE:LMT) has refreshed its production line to make it more flexible and is already enjoying growing revenues at its Space Systems arm, while Eutelsat is only just trialling its own LEOs. 

New York-listed STMicroelectronics NV (NASDAQ:STM), which is the primary supplier of phase array antenna for the receiving stations that the satellites will beam their signals down offers another space angle. At a recent capital markets day, STM said antenna for LEO satellites are one of its programs that are expected to ramp up in the second half of the year and beyond. 

Analysts at Liberum commented: “While there are concerns on STM regarding its exposure to Huawei and the smartphone segment, we believe the company's overall exposure is very broad and it is likely to see strong growth into H2'19 and beyond on the back of these broad programs.”

Tue, 04 Jun 2019 14:10:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon more than doubles profit in the first quarter but revenue growth slows ]]> Inc.'s (NASDAQ:AMZN) profit more than doubled in the first quarter as lower-than-expected costs offset the slowest rate of sales growth in four years.

Net income rose to US$3.6bn, or US$7.09 per share, in the quarter ended March 31 from US$1.6bn, or US$3.27 per share, a year ago. Analysts had predicted earnings of US$4.65 a share.

Revenue increased 17% to US$59.7bn, marking the lowest growth rate since the first quarter of 2015 but in line with estimates and near the top end of the company’s guidance range of US$56bn to US$60bn.

READ: Amazon plans to launch thousands of satellites for global internet access

Amazon in January issued a cautious forecast on sales, saying new regulations in India had created uncertainty around one of its key growth markets.

At the time, the e-commerce giant also said it would step up investments this year after pulling back on hiring and capital expenditure last year.

While revenue growth eased, Amazon did not increase spending as planned. 

Operating expenses edged up 13% to US$55.3bn, down from a 42% jump in the first quarter of 2018.

Delivery costs gained 21% to US$7.4bn in the quarter, compared to increases of more than 30% in 2017 and early 2018.

Cloud computing arm the star performer 

The company’s cloud computing arm, Amazon Web Services, delivered a 41% gain in revenue to US$7.7bn and a 59% surge in operating profit to US$2.2bn.

The North American retail business posted a 17% increase in revenue to US$35.8bn, decelerating from the 46% jump reported a year ago. Operating profit nearly doubled to US$2.3bn.

International revenue was up 9% to US$16.2bn, slower than last year’s 34% growth while operating losses narrowed to US$622m to US$90m.

Other revenue, consisting mainly of the advertising business, advanced 36% to US$2.7bn.

Second quarter profits to be hit by spending on roll out of one-day shipping

For the second quarter, Amazon expects net sales to rise between 13% and 20% to US$59.5bn to US$63.5bn.

Operating income is expected to be in the range of $2.6bn to $3.6bn, compared with US$3bn a year ago.

Analysts were expecting second-quarter net sales of US$62.4bn and operating income of US$4.2bn.

Amazon also announced that it plans to cut shipping times to one day for Prime members.

It will spend US$800mln in the second quarter to roll out the change.

Fri, 26 Apr 2019 08:26:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon plans to launch thousands of satellites for global internet access ]]> Inc (MASDAQ:AMZN) wants to launch thousands of satellites into space as part of a mission to provide global internet access, engadget reported Thursday. The endeavor, titled Project Kuiper, involves deploying 3,236 low-Earth orbit satellites in to cover roughly 95% of the global population.

"Project Kuiper is a new initiative to launch a constellation of low Earth orbit satellites that will provide low-latency, high-speed broadband connectivity to unserved and underserved communities around the world," an Amazon spokesperson told GeekWire, which originally discovered filings for the project. "This is a long-term project that envisions serving tens of millions of people who lack basic access to broadband internet."

READ: Amazon is planning a free news app for Fire TV

In November, Amazon Web Services announced that the company was building a network of 12 satellite facilities around the world called AWS Ground Stations in order to more quickly transmit data between satellites and Earth.

Project Kuiper is Amazon’s salvo in what’s gearing up to be a global broadband space race. Elon Musk’s SpaceX launched a pair of satellites last year, an early step toward the company’s ambition of a more than 12,000-satellite network. OneWeb launched the first six satellite of its planned 650-satellite network last month.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is also funding Blue Origin, a project that he hopes will send tourists to space later this year, per CNBC.

Shares slipped 0.3% to 1,815.3.

Contact Andrew Kessel at

Follow him on Twitter @andrew_kessel

Thu, 04 Apr 2019 15:25:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon is planning a free news app for Fire TV ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) is developing a free ad-supported video news app for its Fire TV devices, The Information reported Friday.

The app is expected to feature digital content and live video from various TV networks, according to sources familiar with the matter. Executives of the e-commerce titan have approached news outlets in recent weeks about distributing their programming.

Shares gained 0.5% to $1,782.12.

The company hopes to launch the app in the coming months, but a timeline hasn’t been set. Eventually, Amazon hopes to integrate it with its Alexa devices in addition to Fire TV.

Amazon is likely taking its cues from Roku, a chief rival of Fire TV, which recently launched its own free, ad-supported news app called Roku Channel. Roku Channel currently includes programming from ABC News and Yahoo.

Contact Andrew Kessel at

Follow him on Twitter @andrew_kessel

Fri, 29 Mar 2019 14:59:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Amazon to New York: Drop dead ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) didn’t have a lot of love to show New York City on Valentine’s Day.

The e-commerce giant said in a statement Thursday that it was abandoning its plan for a Long Island City headquarters in the borough of Queens “after much thought and deliberation.” The agreement to build there had drawn criticism from local politicians because it included nearly $3 billion in state and city incentives.

READ: declines after e-commerce giant issues disappointing 1Q guidance

“While polls show that 70% of New Yorkers support our plans and investment, a number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence,” the company said.

The Seattle-based company said it would proceed with its plans to build in Northern Virginia and Nashville, Tennessee.

The stock pared its decline, slipping 0.4% to $1,633.64 in Thursday’s Nasdaq trading.

Contact Dennis Fitzgerald at

Thu, 14 Feb 2019 12:42:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - declines after e-commerce giant issues disappointing 1Q guidance ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) fell Friday a day after the e-commerce giant reported disappointing guidance that overshadowed strong quarterly results.

Net sales are expected to be between $56 billion and $60 billion in the first quarter, or to grow between 10% and 18% compared with a year earlier. The company said it's expecting an unfavorable impact of about 2.10 percentage points from foreign-exchange rates.

Shares fell 4.3% in Friday's premarking trading. 

READ: Amazon takes over from Microsoft as world's most valuable listed company

Wall Street analysts were forecasting $61 billion in first-quarter net sales.

The company reported fourth-quarter earnings of $6.04 per share on revenue of $72.4 billion, beating street estimates of $5.67 per share on $71.61 billion in revenue.

The fourth-quarter is generally the largest for Amazon because it includes the holiday shopping season.

Operating income is expected to be between $2.3 billion and $3.3 billion in the first quarter, compared with the year-ago period’s $1.9 billion. 

Amazon shares are trading about 18% below their August 2018 high of $2,050.

Contact Katie Lewis at

Fri, 01 Feb 2019 08:00:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Amazon takes over from Microsoft as world's most valuable listed company ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) has taken over from Microsoft Corp (NASDAQ:MSFT) to become the world’s most valuable listed company.

The e-commerce giant was valued at US$797bn when the US stock market closed on Monday after shares rose 3.4%, taking it to the top position for the first time.

In comparison, Microsoft ended the day with a market capitalisation of US$789bn.

Apple became the world's first public company to be worth $1tn in August but since then its shares have slumped and it is now valued at US$702bn.

Amazon’s shares were propelled higher on Monday after Pivotal Research Group initiated its coverage of the stock with a ‘buy’ rating, saying it thinks company’s opportunities this year are "mostly unconstrained".  

The research firm added that Amazon’s shares could jump 20%.

READ: Black Friday shoppers spent more than $6 billion from the comfort of their couch

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is the world’s wealthiest man with a fortune of US$135bn, according to Bloomberg’s billionaire index.

He joined the ranks of the world’s richest entrepreneurs when Amazon floated on the stock exchange in 1997, raising US$54mln.

Amazon started out as a niche second-hand book seller but it now sells a range of products and services such as clothes, food, music and gadgets.

In the past 10 years the company has invested heavily in its expansion in existing and new markets.

More recently, Amazon entered the supermarket sector through its US$13.7bn acquisition of Whole Foods Market in 2017.

READ: Amazon to finance Whole Foods acquisition through monster unsecured loan note offering

It has also invested in original movie and TV content and won the rights to broadcast live sports, including England's Premier League and ATP tennis.

In addition, Amazon has manufactured its own products like the Kindle and the Alexa virtual assistant. 

Tue, 08 Jan 2019 12:28:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Airbnb taps seasoned Amazon finance veteran as new CFO ]]> Home-sharing start-up Airbnb has tapped a senior Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) executive as its new chief financial officer after a 10-month search, ahead of a widely anticipated initial public offering next year.

Dave Stephenson will join Airbnb as chief financial officer after spending 17 years at Amazon, most recently as VP and CFO of Amazon's Worldwide Consumer Organization, responsible for all global website sales.

Stephenson will start in early January, Airbnb said in a statement, and will replace Laurence Tosi, who reportedly left the company amid rumors of tensions with Airbnb co-founder and CEO, Brian Chesky.

Cyber Monday Roundup: Amazon, Best Buy and Walmart slash prices ahead of the holiday

“Dave is one of the best financial operators in the world and there’s no one better prepared to serve as our CFO. I’m proud of everything we’ve achieved, but Airbnb is just getting started,” said Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky.

“In the years ahead, Dave will be Airbnb’s quarterback for long-term growth, driving us to be even more efficient and leverage what makes Airbnb unique to create new businesses and continue to expand,” he added.

Earlier this month, Airbnb said it had "substantially more" than $1 billion in revenue for the third quarter, marking its strongest quarter yet.

“Airbnb is the most valuable start-up in Silicon Valley behind Uber. The appointment of someone with extensive public company experience like Stephenson is likely to fuel speculation that an IPO could come as soon as next year,” reported the Financial Times.


Contact Uttara Choudhury at

Follow her on Twitter: @UttaraProactive 

Mon, 26 Nov 2018 11:51:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report:Amazon's 2HQ decision shows its long game; a buying opportunity in Apple? ]]> Inc's (NASDAQ:AMZN) has a very good reason in moving part of its second headquarters into Northern Virginia and it may have something to do about winning a lucrative contract with the Pentagon, a report by Rolling Stone said.

Amazon has increased the odds through its decision it will be awarded one of the all-time lucrative defense deals, the $10 billion Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) contract, providing cloud services and a platform for Department of Defense operations, instantly becoming one of the biggest federal contractors.

The award can only go to a provider that meets Defense Information Systems Agency Impact Level 6, a requirement that has to do with security/secrecy clearances.

Only one private provider meets that requirement, and numerous reports say that provider is Amazon Web Services, the report said.

Amazon stock rose 0.96% to $1,614.41 late on Thursday.

FAANG Report: Backlash building against Amazon's second HQ

Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) continues to scale back its robot ambitions with the news that it’s shutting down Schaft, a little-known Japanese robotics team purchased by Alphabet back in 2013, a report by The Verge said.

Schaft was best known for its work developing advanced bipedal robotics.

The firm had its origins in the University of Tokyo’s robotics lab, where engineers built bio-inspired robot legs with metal bones, muscles, and tendons.

The team later moved to more conventional systems, modifying industrial robotics hardware to be more powerful and precise, the report said.

Google shares gained 1.9% to $1,063.63. 

FAANG Report: Google expanding presence in New York

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) has added the Korean drama series 'Memories of the Alhambra', a 16-episode series was produced by Studio Dragon, one of Korea’s largest scripted television production outfits, a report by Variety said.

“Memories of the Alhambra” is a suspense romance drama that revolves around an investment company CEO who visits Granada, Spain, for a business trip and gets involved in a mysterious incident after staying in an old hostel run by a Korean woman, the report said.

New episodes will be shown by Netflix globally from December 1.

Netflix has boarded several Korean drama series for international release, including “Life” and “Something in the Rain," the report said.

Shares of Netflix added 0.7% to $288.73.

READ: Netflix reports blowout 3Q results as shares soar

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares have tumbled into a bear market following a decline of at least 20% from 52-week highs, but the stock could be in an area where it is a good opportunity to buy, a report by CNBC said.

Those losses have also pushed Apple below the long-term trend line represented by its 200-day moving average.

Bill Baruch, president of Blue Line Futures, isn't sweating the Apple sell-off. "I'm actually not too concerned it's below the 200-day moving average. Look back at February, look back at April. It was below there for six and seven sessions so I think it can ping-pong around a little bit," Baruch said Wednesday on CNBC's 'Trading Nation.'

Apple's sharp sell-off has presented a buying opportunity for investors, said Michael Bapis, managing director of Vios Advisors at Rockefeller Capital Management. "I think it's at a big discount. This panic and craze is unjustified," Bapis said.

Apple stock rose 2.01% to $190.55.

READ: Apple shares tank as supplier warnings fuel concerns about iPhone sales

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) confirmed it is encouraging its employees to use the Android system and not Apple iPhones and that there is some bad blood with Apple CEO Tim Cook, a Facebook blog post said.

"Tim Cook has consistently criticized our business model and (Facebook CEO) Mark (Zuckerberg) has been equally clear he disagrees," the post read.

"So there’s been no need to employ anyone else to do this for us. And we’ve long encouraged our employees and executives to use Android because it is the most popular operating system in the world." 

Facebook stock eased 0.7% to $143.18.

Contact Rene Pastor by

Thu, 15 Nov 2018 12:05:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon and Google in race for high-tech talent; Facebook becoming a job site ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) are going to recruit thousands of employees in New York City and the surrounding metropolitan area, pitting the two technology giants against one another and also other businesses for already scarce talent in the area, a report by the Wall Street Journal said.

Amazon will bring more than 25,000 jobs to New York and another 25,000 to Northern Virginia, the retail giant had announced this week.

Google, on the other hand, plans to double its workforce in New York City to more than 14,000 workers over the next 10 years, the company's chief financial officer said on WSJ's Tech D.Live.

Shares of Amazon eased 0.88% to $1,616.78 by midsession on Wednesday.

Google stock gained 0.19% to $1,037.97.

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) wants to help people land their next job after launching 'Jobs on Facebook,' which allows businesses to post job listings on the social media site, a report by Fortune said.

Learn with Facebook is meant to provide people with skills to advance their careers with everything from simple tips on building a resume, marketing their work and services online, and interviewing, up to more advanced skills like coding.

The new initiative stems from reports indicating that, while jobs are growing, the global workforce is on track to face a shortage of skilled labor.

Learn with Facebook has already launched in France and Germany and there are plans to expand in Mexico, Brazil, and more. Facebook seems keen on expanding in the job-seeking and training sector, the report said

Facebook stock went up 0.4% to $142.73.

READ: Facebook opens pop-up store in Macy's in New York City and 8 other cities

Giant insurer UnitedHealthcare is offering free Apple Inc (NASDAQ:APPL) watches to customers who enroll in a "Motion" program, a report by CNBC said.

Apple is increasingly in talks with insurers about getting the cost of its Apple Watch subsidized, as it moves more deeply into the health and wellness space. It held meetings in August of last year with another insurer, Aetna, to discuss ways to bring the device to its more than 20 million members.

The integration with UnitedHealthcare, which is the largest US health-care company, could mean a boost in sales of the Apple Watch as more people are able to buy it at an affordable price.

Within six months, members can essentially earn the device for free and get extra rewards on top of via their health savings account.

Apple shares lost 2.59% to $187.26.

READ: Apple rolls out new iPad Pro, MacBook Air and Mac mini in Brooklyn, New York city event

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) is exploring a mobile-only subscription plan because they are increasingly popular in Asian and East Asian countries, a report by The Verge said.

The growth of mobile Netflix users, especially in countries where mobile usage outpaces time spent watching traditional TV or time on a computer, is constant.

Part of Netflix’s product plan includes creating better tools for mobile users who can now download TV shows for offline viewing, the report said.

The company is leaning into customers who want to spend more time on their phones and tablets, and it’s seemingly introducing a cheaper tier specifically for those customers.

Netflix stock retreated 3.3% to $284.69.

Contact Rene Pastor at

Wed, 14 Nov 2018 13:38:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Backlash building against Amazon's second HQ; Facebook woos teens ]]> A backlash is already building against Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) after the retail behemoth said it will split its second headquarters between New York City and a suburb of Washington, DC, a report by NBC News said.

Congresswoman-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said she received concerned calls from residents in her Queens district, which is adjacent to where the Amazon offices will be located. She characterized the general sentiment about Amazon moving into the area as “outrage.”

Amazon made the surprise decision to split the second headquarters between two locations after a year-long bidding frenzy that started with proposals from 238 cities.

“Amazon is a billion-dollar company. The idea that it will receive hundreds of millions of dollars in tax breaks at a time when our subway is crumbling and our communities need MORE investment, not less, is extremely concerning to residents here,” she tweeted Monday.

Amazon shares were up 0.5% to $1,644.57 by midsession on Tuesday.  

We need to focus on good healthcare, living wages, affordable rent. Corporations that offer none of those things should be met w/ skepticism.

It’s possible to establish economic partnerships w/ real opportunities for working families, instead of a race-to-the-bottom competition.

— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Ocasio2018) November 13, 2018

Services of Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAG:GOOG) were down for an hour Monday after its IP addresses were routed from normal paths through Nigeria, China and Russia, a report by Engadget said.

Some of Google's most sensitive data, including its corporate WAN infrastructure and VPN, were reportedly redirected, the report said.

The problem started when a carrier in Lagos, Nigeria, improperly declared its own system as the correct route to several hundred IP prefixes belonging to Google.

China Telecom accepted the route (also improperly) and declared it worldwide. That, in turn, was picked up by Russia's Transtelecom and other large ISP services. Later on, the same Nigerian carrier made a second incorrect IP declaration that sent Google partner Cloudflare's IP addresses on a similar joyride.

Google shares added 0.5% to $1,043.83.

FAANG Report: Google expanding presence in New York

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) rolled out the launch of a new app aimed at competing against the massive video media app TikTok (formerly and winning back teenage users, a report by Rolling Stone said.

The app, Lasso, lets users share 15-second “short-form, entertaining videos” and touts, per Facebook’s pointed wording, a “massive music library,” which comes from the company’s licensing deals struck with major publishers and record labels earlier this year.

Facebook rolled out the new platform without fanfare, possibly following in the lead of TikTok/, which rose to stardom more from word-of-mouth popularity than professional promotion.

Lasso users can log in with existing accounts on either Facebook or Instagram, and the company says the videos they create can eventually be shared on both platforms as well.

Facebook stock gained 1% to $142.98. 

READ: Apple shares tank as supplier warnings fuel concerns about iPhone sales

Analysts of Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) have a long history of misreading weak iPhone demand based on supplier rumors, and then getting it spectacularly wrong, a report in CNBC said.

In 2013, after Barclays lowered iPhone sales estimates, citing "our checks in the supply chain," Apple reported 2.4 million more units shipped than the research firm predicted.

In 2017, Citi called iPhone demand "modest" and "tempered," and Apple beat Wall Street projections for iPhone shipments by about 1 million.

Ahead of Apple's fiscal second-quarter report in May, the company's market value dropped by more than $60 billion in just three trading sessions and at least five analysts adjusted estimates. Reported shipments fell just shy of consensus estimates, but analysts admitted they were overly panicked.

Apple shares eased 0.03% to $194.10.

READ: Netflix trials new ‘Ultra’ subscription plan in Europe

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) said it will test a lower-priced version of its film and television streaming service in some markets such as Asia to boost sales, a report by Bloomberg said.

The company hasn’t committed to lowering prices anywhere, but does want to experiment, Chief Executive Officer Reed Hastings said in an interview Friday. He didn’t say when or where the test would be conducted.

A lower-priced offering would be a departure for Netflix, which has maintained or raised prices in major markets as it adds content and invests in local productions to draw subscribers.

While the company alluded to experiments with cheaper subscription deals in a conference call last month on its earnings, this is the first time Netflix has said it will test a lower-priced tier in some markets, the report said.

Netflix stock increased 1.05% to $297.16.

Reporting by Rene Pastor, contactable on

Tue, 13 Nov 2018 13:10:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon releases holiday toy catalog; Apple quashes settlement talk with Qualcomm ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) has begun mailing out a hard copy holiday toy catalog, which will take the place of Toys R Us in the US and the UK, a report by The Verge said.

Like the old catalogs Toys R Us used to mail out, Amazon’s holiday catalogs retain the simplistic aesthetic, but they also have QR codes attached so customers can easily scan and bring up links to products.

Amazon will also distribute the catalogs at its 4-star locations and bookstores. The retail giant recently announced it would offer free shipping to customers in the US.

Amazon stock climbed 5.18% to $1,727.83 by midsession on Wednesday.

READ: Amazon gives all US customers free shipping with no minimum purchases during holiday season

Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is offering a version of Gmail with extra security in that you will need a physical USB key to log in, a report by Marketplace said.

Mark Risher, head of Google's Account Security team and a creator of its Advanced Protection Program, said they realized that "while we do our utmost to protect everyone, there are some people that need really to turn it up to the max."

He added: "Whether they are activists or journalists or political figures, the risk or the likelihood of an attack is particularly high. And so we built Advanced Protection, yes, as the Fort Knox, to give them Google's strongest security offerings all in one place."

A security expert said the service may be useful in countries where governments spy on people for political purposes.

Google shares increased 2.4% to $1,081.23.

READ: Google walkout - Employees stage global protest over sexual harassment, workplace culture

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) said it will produce more series in Europe in languages other than English following the success of Spanish crime caper "Money Heist" and German mystery "Dark," a report by Agence France Presse carried by Phys Org said.

"We have seen that shows we have done were able to find gigantic global audiences, where the vast majority of viewing comes from outside the country of origin," Netflix chief product officer Greg Peters told AFP.

Around 90% of viewers of "Dark", a show about missing children, live outside of Germany, Austria and Switzerland, he added in Lisbon at the Web Summit, Europe's largest tech gathering.

"Can you think of any German show that has had that much viewing outside" of German-speaking nations, he asked.

Netflix stock jumped 5% to $326.37.

READ: Netflix plans to spend US$1bln to bolster content production in Europe, FT says

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) is not in talks to settle its $7 billion legal dispute with mobile chip maker Qualcomm, a person familiar with the matter told CNBC in a report.

In the past, Apple used Qualcomm's modem chips in its flagship iPhone models to help them connect to wireless data networks.

But early last year, Apple sued Qualcomm in federal court in San Diego, alleging that the chip company's practice of taking a cut of the selling price of phones as a patent license fee was illegal.

Qualcomm denied the claims and has alleged that Apple owes it $7 billion in unpaid royalties. The case is to go to trial early next year and has spawned related legal actions in other courts around the world, the report said.

Apple shares added 1.7% to $207.28.

READ: Facebook referred by UK information watchdog to Europe’s lead data regulator to look at its user monitoring and targeting

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is facing demands from five countries for founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg to testify on its misuse of data and privacy breaches, a report by CBS News said.

The countries looking into disinformation and online election influence campaigns include Argentina, Australia, Ireland, Canada and the UK.

Zuckerberg was invited last week by British and Canadian officials to attend their first joint hearing on November 27 but declined. In its November 2 letter declining the invitation, Facebook noted that Zuckerberg appeared before the US Congress and the European Union Parliament last year.

"It is not possible for Mr. Zuckerberg to be available to all Parliaments," wrote Facebook officials in a letter to the British and Canadian Members of Parliament. But the newly reinforced committee, now hailing from five countries, is stepping up pressure.

"We were very disappointed with this dismissive response....Five parliaments are now calling on you to do the right thing by the 170 million users in the countries they represent," they wrote.

Facebook stock rose 0.8% to $151.16.

Reporting by Rene Pastor, contactable on

Wed, 07 Nov 2018 12:10:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon narrows choice of 2nd HQ to three cities; Facebook hit for white supremacist ad ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) has narrowed its choice of its second headquarters to three cities and the seeming front-runner is not that well known, a report by Investopedia said.

The three choices are Crystal City, Dallas, Texas, and New York City. The first is in North Virginia in the suburbs outside Washington, DC.

Amazon is believed to be negotiating what investment targets it would need to hit to qualify for incentives with government officials there and talking with JBG Smith Properties (JBGS), a publicly traded real-estate investment trust, about the Crystal City real estate it owns.

Crystal City is just across the Potomac River from Washington. It has long been a favorite to win the bidding process because Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has a home there and owns the Washington Post newspaper. The city is also a smart choice because it has good access to tech talent and excellent transport links, two factors that rank high on Amazon’s wish list, as well as numerous ready-to-occupy buildings, the report said.

Later on Monday, the Wall Street Journal said Amazon plans to split its second headquarters evenly between two locations. 

Amazon shares dropped 3.6% to $1,605.34 by midsession on Monday.

READ: Amazon gives all US customers free shipping with no minimum purchases during holiday season

The CEO of Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Sundar Pichai, appeared to be unprepared for the magnitude of the walkout by company employees over the treatment of women in the company, a report by Forbes said.

Pichai had told employees in an internal email that he supported the protesters and had indicated managers should not take punitive action against those who participated in the walkout.

The CEO said: “It’s been a difficult time here. There’s been anger and frustration within the company. We all feel it. I feel it too. At Google we set a very high bar, and we clearly didn’t live up to our expectations.”

The need for CEOs and other top executives to respond to a crisis and issue a public apology is getting pretty common, the report said.

In 2018 alone, Twitter’s Jack Dorsey, Uber’s Dara Khosrowshahi, Starbucks' Kevin Johnson, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, and United Airlines' Scott Kirby all were challenged to issue statements and act in response to their company’s troublesome behavior.

Google shares declined 2.89% to $1,027.22.

Talking of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), the company has apologized after it approved an ad campaign targeted at people interested in a conspiracy theory favored by white nationalists, a report by the BBC said.

In a tweet, senior UK MP Damian Collins, the chair of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, called Facebook's approval of the ad campaign "appalling and irresponsible".

Again, this is appalling and irresponsible - Facebook allowed advertisers to target users interested in “white genocide” — even in wake of Pittsburgh massacre by @samfbiddle

— Damian Collins (@DamianCollins) November 3, 2018

He added that the Intercept's investigative reporting showed "how easy" it was for extremist groups to promote their messages of hate on the social network.

"Once again, the site has only taken action when someone else has brought it to their attention," Mr Collins told the BBC.

Facebook shares lost 1.64% to $147.89.

FAANG Report: Facebook removes 8.7 million images of nude children; Google bans "F" word in workplace

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares were downgraded for the second time since its earnings report because weaker iPhone sales are expected, a report by CNBC said.

Rosenblatt Securities said it has lowered its expectations for iPhone production and shipments. The firm cut its rating on the most valuable public company in the US to neutral from buy. It said in a research note to clients that it will be difficult for Apple to offset weaker volume with higher selling prices in the second half of 2019.

"Calendar fourth-quarter guidance reflects our cautious view on weaker than expected sell-through and production reductions for iPhone XS/XR," analyst Jun Zhang wrote. We "downgrade to neutral."

Apple also was downgraded by Bank of America Merrill Lynch on Friday.

Apple shares retreated 3.48% to $200.25.

A brokerage, Buckingham Research, took the opposite tack when it came to streaming giant Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX), a separate report by CNBC said.

Buckingham raised its rating two notches to buy from underperform for Netflix shares, saying that while it was previously cautious on its "elevated" stock price, it still believes it is a top-notch option.

"We have always viewed Netflix as the continued top streaming category winner," analyst Matthew Harrigan wrote in a research note to clients on Monday.

Consequently, the brokerage said they are "increasing our price target to $406 from $349, providing 31% upside, with the stock's 27% decline from its July 12-month high being the primary upgrade catalyst."

Netflix stock eased 0.43% to $307.78.

Reporting by Rene Pastor, contactable on 

Mon, 05 Nov 2018 13:17:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Amazon gives all US customers free shipping with no minimum purchases during holiday season ]]> Retail behemoth Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) announced on Monday it is giving all US customers free shipping with no minimum purchase amount on orders that will arrive in time for the Christmas holiday.

The offer applies to hundreds of millions of items - the largest free shipping selection in the country, a company statement said. The millions of Prime members can shop with free same-day delivery. 

“This holiday, customers can enjoy free shipping with no minimum purchase amount on orders that will arrive in time for Christmas, including items from Amazon’s expertly curated Gift Guides across electronics, fashion, home and toys,” said Doug Herrington, senior vice-president of North American Retail at Amazon.

READ: Amazon looking to hire 100,000 seasonal workers for Christmas shopping season, says report

The holiday season in the US normally kicks off on the Friday after the Thanksgiving holiday which this year falls on November 23 and runs all the way up to Christmas, December 25.

Amazon is the world's biggest retailer. The company is based in Seattle, Washington.

Reporting by Rene Pastor, contactable on


Mon, 05 Nov 2018 08:13:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - The ‘pseudo Google tax’ which could finally see Facebook and Amazon pay their fair share ]]> As part of Monday’s Budget speech, Chancellor Philip Hammond unveiled his highly-anticipated digital sales tax, which some commentators have referred to as a ‘pseudo Google tax’.

At the moment, tech companies such as Facebook, Google and are taxed on how much profit they make in the UK, but campaigners have often accused them of artificially reducing their profits so they can pay less tax.

READ: The Budget as it happened

Instead, the Chancellor wants to tax their revenues, a much larger figure which is harder to manipulate.

Taxing anything other than profits is virtually unheard of, so the UK will be a pioneer of this model, with the international community, which is similarly frustrated by the lack of tax paid by the big tech firms, looking on closely.

His plan is to hit “established tech giants” – those which are profitable and generate global revenues of at least £500mln a year – with a 2% tax on all sales that they make in the UK.

Addressing Parliament, Hammond said: “It is clearly not sustainable or fair that digital platform businesses can generate substantial value in the UK without paying tax here.”

For example, Amazon paid £4.5mln in taxes to the UK government last year despite turning over almost £2bn. Under the new proposals, it would have to pay HMRC £40mln.

Blue-chips targeted, not start-ups analyst Neil Wilson said the hike was “not entirely immaterial” for the firms but also “not really that meaningful” either.

The UK is well-known for its thriving digital start-up community, particularly those in the fintech sector, and Hammond was at pains to reassure them that it would be the bigger players who “shoulder the burden” of the new levy.

“The [£500mln] threshold means this tax is aimed squarely at the likes of Facebook, Alphabet, Amazon and maybe a couple others,” Wilson noted.

Assuming Parliament votes through the proposal – corporate tax is an issue which has attracted cross-party ire – the changes would come in to force in April 2020.

For the 2019-20 tax year, the treasury has estimated that the tax will bring in an additional £275mln before gradually rising up to £440mln in 2022-23.

Other governments to follow suit?

“A tax take of £400mln or so might seem a small number when you consider that Amazon alone is expected to post sales of US$233bn this year,” said Hargreaves Lansdown analyst Laith Khalaf.

“But the worry for the tech giants, and their shareholders, is that this is the pebble that starts an avalanche of taxes from international governments.”

Both the 36-member Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the European Commission have been trying to agree how to tax social media platforms, internet marketplaces and search engines.

They haven’t had much joy in reaching a consensus yet, with Hammond describing progress as “painfully slow”, hence why he’s decided to go it alone for the time being.

The UK government has earmarked April 2020 as the likely start date for its regulations, although by that point, the Chancellor hopes that a global agreement on digital turnover tax will have been agreed.

Tue, 30 Oct 2018 13:05:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon's miss may be a buying opportunity; Google wrestles with sex harassment charges ]]> The miss on quarterly results by Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) may be an opening to buy the stock after shares of the world's biggest retailer slid nearly 10%, a report by Forbes said.

Revenue of $56.58 billion was $520 million below analysts' estimates and Amazon's revenue forecast for the fourth quarter — between $66.5 billion and $72.5 billion — was sharply under analyst estimates of $73.89 billion.

The report said for at least the last two years, Amazon has reported a quarter that disappointed analysts. And each time, that miss was a buying opportunity, the report concluded.

What investors seem to miss is that Amazon is turning into a profit-growth machine through Amazon Web Services and Amazon Business, it added.

Amazon stock dropped 7.8% to $1,642.32 by midsession on Friday.

READ: FAANGs for the memories ... tech stocks come off the boil

Apple Inc's (NASDAQ:AAPL) services category - the area containing everything from iTunes, the App Store, Apple Music, iCloud and more - has become the iPhone maker's second biggest source of revenue, a report by BGR said. 

That area will be a strong focus of attention when Apple reports its fiscal fourth quarter earnings on November 1.

Apple has set a target of doubling services revenue to $14 billion per quarter by 2020, the report said.

Apple stock fell 1.4% to $216.61.

Top executive of Alphabet Inc's google (NASDAQ:GOOG) assured employees that the company is serious about providing a safe workplace after a report how Google protected three executives accused of sexual misconduct over the past decade, a report by CNN Business said.

"We want to assure you that we review every single complaint about sexual harassment or inappropriate conduct, we investigate and we take action," the email written by Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Google VP of people operations Eileen Naughton said.

"In recent years, we've made a number of changes, including taking an increasingly hard line on inappropriate conduct by people in positions of authority," they said.

According to the email, 48 people at Google have been terminated for sexual harassment over the last two years, 13 of whom were senior managers and above.

Google stock lost 2.8% to $1,064.92.

FAANG Report: Facebook removes 8.7 million images of nude children; Google bans "F" word in workplace

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is rolling out more music features on Friday to integrate its licensing partnership with all three major labels into Stories, user profiles, and its Lip Sync Live feature, a report by The Verge said.

Starting on Friday, Facebook users will be able to add music stickers to their Facebook Stories. You can search for songs, pick out the part you want to share, and add the sticker with the artist and song name. It works exactly the same way as it does on Instagram Stories, which introduced the feature in June.

Facebook is also expanding Lip Sync Live, its TikTok competitor (RIP, to Pages, so creators and artists can “connect with their fans, the report said. 

Facebook shares retreated 2.76% to $146.79.

The workplace culture of Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) can be "ruthless, demoralizing and transparent to the point of dysfunctional," a report by the Wall Street Journal said.

Chief Executive Reed Hastings teared up as he addressed some 500 executives at a corporate retreat in July. Hastings had recently fired his chief communications officer for saying the “N-word” in full form, the rport said.

The executive, who is white, was attempting to make an emphatic point during a meeting about offensive words in comedy programming and said the slur wasn’t directed at anyone.

Netflix stock was down 2.6% to $304.71.

Reporting by Rene Pastor, contactable on

Fri, 26 Oct 2018 11:18:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon's disappointing 3Q results draw mixed views from Wall Street ]]> Shares of the retailer Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) are taking a hammering this morning as analysts and investors have adopted a mixed view of its third-quarter results from last night.

Unveiled late on Thursday, Amazon’s earnings crushed Wall Street’s estimates, but its revenue and fourth-quarter outlook missed the mark and investors pummeled its shares in response, sending them reeling by 8.4% to $1,632 in Friday's morning trade.

Sticking to a Buy rating while cutting their price target on the stock to $2,100 from $2,150, UBS analysts Eric Sheridan and Alexandra Steiger predict Amazon’s stock could trade sideways over the next few months as investors debate a new normal of revenue growth. But despite their price cut, the team at UBS still argues that Amazon is a core holding that offers exposure to growth trends in eCommerce, cloud computing, media consumption, digital advertising & artificial intelligence voice assistants.

Piper Jaffray analyst Michael Olson is also slashing his price target for Amazon shares to $2,050 from $2,100, but keeping an Overweight rating on the retailer. While investors might be disappointed with the retailer’s deceleration in revenue growth, he’s encouraged by the potential for ongoing margin expansion and upside to its bottom line, according to a note to investors, first shared by

JPMorgan analyst Doug Anmuth also joined the group and lowered Amazon’s stock target to $2,100 from $2,200, but he too still believes its core retail trends are buoyant. “Amazon’s Q4 revenue guide of 10%-20% was lower than expected, but similar to Q3, its underlying growth remains strong,” Anmuth wrote, according to

READ: reports miss on 3Q revenue as shares tumble

Canaccord’s Michael Graham, meanwhile, sees the weakness in Amazon’s shares as a buying opportunity. He is keeping his Buy rating and a $2,100 price target on its stock.

Stifel analyst Scott Devitt is among the doubters, however, and is lowering his price target on the stock to $2,400 from $2,525, calling Amazon’s lower-operating margin guidance somewhat surprising. But he points out that its fourth-quarter guidance reflects the company’s recent decision to raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour for its US employees. Devitt is sticking to a Buy rating on the stock, citing Amazon’s leading position in the Cloud services and retail sectors and growing margin opportunity, according to

In other news, RBC Capital analyst Mark Mahaney is bucking the trend and lifting his price target on Amazon to $2,300 from $2,100 on the view that the retailer reported its “highest gross margins” seen in any third-quarter, along with record high operating margins and the biggest operating profit upside in its history.

Jefferies analyst Brent Thill also stands in the optimists’ camp and has raised his price target to $2,300 from $2,260 in the wake of last night’s “strong” third-quarter results. “While revenue came in just shy of consensus, operating income was $1.6 billion ahead of estimates and 6.6% operating margin was the highest in 14 years,” Thill wrote in a note entitled “Every Rockstar Needs a Break”, according to

Lastly, Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter is also sticking to an Outperform rating and a $2,100 price target on the view that Amazon can deliver sUBStantial earnings over the long term by growing spending more slowly than revenues. “Amazon Web Services, Fulfillment by Amazon and ads should drive steady margin growth, with Prime driving overall retail revenue growth,” Pachter concludes. “In our view, Amazon’s phenomenal rate of profit growth warrants an outsized valuation.”

For the third quarter, Amazon’s earnings per share of $5.75 trounced the consensus estimate of $3.14 while its revenue of $56.6 billion fell short of Wall Street’s projection of $57.10 billion.

Looking ahead, the company’s fourth-quarter revenue guidance of $66.5 billion to $72.5 billion, also misses the bar of $73.79 billion set by analysts.

Contact Ellen Kelleher at


Fri, 26 Oct 2018 09:26:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - reports miss on 3Q revenue as shares tumble ]]> Retail behemoth Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) reported on Thursday a miss in third quarter revenue, causing shares to tumble in afterhours trade.

The company reported third quarter sales at $56.6 billion, below the consensus estimate of $57.1 billion, but above the year-ago level of $43.74 billion.

Net income reached $2.9 billion with EPS at $5.75, compared with expectations it would hit $3.14 and the year-ago mark of $0.52.

Shares of Amazon fell 5% to $1,692.25 in afterhours trade, having closed on Thursday up 7.09% to $1,782.17.

READ: Amazon launches biggest lineup of new devices as Alexa invades every corner of your house

"Amazon Business has now reached a $10 billion annual sales run rate and is serving millions of private and public-sector organizations in eight countries,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO. 

Among the company's highlights for the quarter are the introduction by Amazon of a new family of Echo devices and the all-new Fire HD 8 tablet among others.

Amazon expanded grocery delivery from Whole Foods Market through Prime Now.

Reporting by Rene Pastor, contactable on

Thu, 25 Oct 2018 16:29:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon demands retraction of Chinese computer spy chip story; US pressures Google ]]> A senior official in Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) has demanded that a Bloomberg story about Chinese spy chips being embedded in its servers be retracted, a report by CNBC said.

Andy Jassy, the CEO of Amazon Web Services, echoed the same accusation by Apple CEO Tim Cook that the story is not true.

@tim_cook is right. Bloomberg story is wrong about Amazon, too. They offered no proof, story kept changing, and showed no interest in our answers unless we could validate their theories. Reporters got played or took liberties. Bloomberg should retract.

— Andy Jassy (@ajassy) October 22, 2018

Stephen Schmidt, said in an Amazon blog post there are so many inaccuracies in the report "that they're hard to count."

"At no time, past or present, have we ever found any issues relating to modified hardware or malicious chips in SuperMicro motherboards in any Elemental or Amazon systems. Nor have we engaged in an investigation with the government," the post said.

Amazon shares declined 1.8% to trade at $1,757.

READ: Amazon and Apple's denials of cyber-security hack apparently backed up by British security agency

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) chief executive Tim Cook is expected to endorse the idea of a "comprehensive federal privacy law" for the US in a speech he will deliver on Wednesday, a report by Tech Crunch said.

He will also back Europe’s approach to data protection and privacy - recently enshrined in place via the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) - essentially saying technology does not have to be creepy to be innovative. Nor should the tech itself be a cause of harm, the report said.

Cook will be addressing the 40th International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners (ICDPPC), which is being held in Brussels this year to coincide with the introduction of GDPR.

Silicon Valley’s response to the prospect of an overarching US privacy law has been predictably disingenuous, with attempts to reframe the issue under broad brush, malleable concepts like "control" or "accountability," and lobbying efforts aimed at steering regulators away from drafting rules anywhere near as robust as GDPR.

Apple shares slipped 0.1% to $220.42.

Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is coming under increasing pressure from the US government to share location information possibly on thousands of innocent people, a report by Forbes said.

“This fishing expedition infringes on the privacy rights of so many possible people who had the misfortune of being in an area where a crime is alleged to be committed,” said Jerome Greco, staff attorney at the Legal Aid Society.

“We should not allow for such broad access to the data of so many on the mere speculation that a suspect may have used a cellphone near the location of the crime,” he added.

The way it works, according to the report, is that police send Google specific coordinates and timezones within which crimes were committed. Then Google is asked to provide information on all users within those locations at those times, most likely including data on many innocent people.

Those users could be Android phone owners, anyone running Google Maps or any individual running Google services on their cell, not just criminal suspects.

Google shares shed 0.05% to $1,100.65.

READ: Facebook names new head of Instagram a week after co-founders of photo-sharing app resign

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) seems to be facing an exodus of key officials leaving the social media giant, a report by Vanity Fair said.

The latest is Brendan Irribe, the former CEO and co-founder of Oculus. His departure follows that of Instagram's co-founders, Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger.

Alex Stamos, the company’s chief security officer who helped guide the company through the Cambridge Analytica data-privacy scandal, left in August. Two longtime communications executives, Rachel Whetstone and Elliot Schrage, also departed the company, the report said.

After eight years, Facebook’s top lawyer, Colin Stretch, announced his exit in July. Dan Rose, vice president of partnerships, announced his departure in August, the same month that Alex Hardiman, the head of news products, announced she was leaving, too.

The report said if Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg can’t hold onto the heads of the companies he acquires, he may find it difficult to lure top talent in the increasingly competitive environment of Silicon Valley.

Separately, Facebook is rolling out a redesign of its chat app, Messenger, so people can realize that it can be used for chatting with businesses as well as their friends, a report by CNBC said.

Facebook stock fell 0.5% to $153.97.

Streaming giant Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) is defending itself against accusation it targets viewers by using race to promote its various television series and films, a report by IndieWire said.

Netflix said in a statement that it’s impossible for the website to target viewers via race since they have no way of knowing what the specific race is of each subscriber.

The streaming giant said it promotes shows based on its algorithm, which takes into consideration what subscribers have streamed in the past.

“We don’t ask members for their race, gender, or ethnicity so we cannot use this information to personalize their individual Netflix experience. The only information we use is a member’s viewing history," it said.

Netflix stock added 1.19% to $333.13.

Reporting by Rene Pastor, contactable on

Tue, 23 Oct 2018 14:24:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon looking to hire 100,000 seasonal workers for Christmas shopping season, says report ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) is looking to hire more than 100,000 people for seasonal jobs during the Christmas holiday season, a report by HomeWorld Business said on Wednesday.

The newly hired workers will benefit from the new Amazon $15 minimum hourly wage along with weekly paychecks for seasonal roles and flexible shifts to those with busy schedules.

The retail giant is holding job fairs in California, Illinois, Washington, Kentucky, New Jersey and Florida where the need is greatest for the company's fulfillment centers, sortation centers and delivery stations.

"For those who are looking for short-term roles to help pay for gifts or supplement other income, this is a great opportunity to try a role with Amazon for the first time," Dave Clark, the senior vice-president for Amazon operations, was quoted in the report as saying.

READ: Amazon raises minimum wage to $15 per hour as CEO Jeff Bezos admits critics of its pay scale were right

Clark added: “Since the $15 minimum wage announcement, we are seeing a great response from job applicants and are encouraged in our early efforts to lead in pay for hourly employees.”

Amazon had come under criticism for its wage structure and raised its minimum pay as a result.

Amazon is the world's biggest retailer. It became the second US company to hit a $1 trillion valuation.

Reporting by Rene Pastor, contactable on

Wed, 17 Oct 2018 13:03:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Jeff Bezos says Amazon will work with the Pentagon; Apple apologizes over phishing app ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) CEO Jeff Bezos said his sprawling businesses will continue to do work with the US Defense Department despite internal and external criticism for doing so, a report by CNN Business said.

"If big tech companies are going to turn their back on the DoD, this country is going to be in trouble," Bezos said at the Wired25 conference in San Francisco.

"We are going to continue to support the DoD, and I think we should," said Bezos. "One of the jobs of senior leadership is to make the right decision, even when it's unpopular."

The billionaire has faced backlash from Amazon employees over its business deals with government agencies.

It has already worked with the DoD and multiple law enforcement agencies have used its facial recognition system, Rekognition. Amazon employees and civil liberties organizations claimed that the software could be used to violate human rights, the report said.

Amazon is currently in the running for a $10 billion contract with the Pentagon to host its data on the cloud.

Amazon shares climbed 2.19% to $1,799.47 by midsession.

READ: Amazon and Apple's denials of cyber-security hack apparently backed up by British security agency

The CEO of Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Sundar Pichai, said at the same Wired25 conference it is still considering whether to launch a censored version of its search product in China, CNN Business said.

"It's very early. We don't know whether we could or would do this in China, but we felt it was important for us to explore," Pichai said.

Google had been working on the project in secret, but after the reports about its existence emerged, more than 1,000 Google employees signed a letter asking for more transparency. 

The prospect of Google returning to China has fueled criticism from human rights groups that the company, which has long advocated a free and open internet, would be doing the bidding of the ruling Chinese Communist Party, which runs a vast censorship apparatus that stifles dissent, the report explained.

Google stock rose 2.27% to $1,117.04.

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) has apologized after some Apple ID accounts were compromised due to a phishing scam in China, a report by The Verge said.

The payment companies, Alipay and WeChat Pay, announced last week that hackers in China had gained access to some users’ payment accounts.

“We are deeply apologetic about the inconvenience caused to our customers by these phishing scams,” Apple said in a statement.

The companies did not disclose how many users were hacked, the total amount of money stolen, or offer deeper insight into the hack. Apple said last week that it would refund the money users lost.

Apple shares increased 1.28% to $220.15.

READ: Facebook launches Watch video-streaming service worldwide

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is said to be working on a TV camera that would offer Portal-like video chatting on a bigget screen and allow users to stream content from Facebook Watch, a report by The Verge said.

If the device - said to be codenamed “Ripley” - makes it to market, Facebook would enter into another massive smart home battleground, facing off against Amazon, Apple, Google, and Roku for valuable set-top box space.

The company is already having a tough time getting users’ trust after a seemingly endless stream of privacy scandals, so it’s hard to imagine the solution is adding even more microphones or speakers to intrude on their lives, the report said.

Facebook stock went up 2.58% to $157.48.

For the third time in two days, the price target for shares of Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) were slashed by Morgan Stanley and it just happened to take place on the same day the company is reporting its quarterly results later on Tuesday, a report by CNBC said.

On Monday, Goldman Sachs and Raymond James cut their price targets for the streaming giant.

Morgan Stanley cut its price target to $450, from $480 per share.

It said global trends like the strong dollar and rising interest rates as upping the online streaming service's expenses. Netflix will be paying more as it still needs to "raise an additional ~$5 [billion] of debt over the next two years before reaching positive free cash flow in 2021," the Morgan Stanley report by analyst Benjamin Swinburned was quoted as saying.

Netflix shares added 1.94% to $339.58.

Reporting by Rene Pastor, contactable on

Tue, 16 Oct 2018 13:15:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon partners with Shark Tank; right-wingers dominate ads on Google ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) announced on Monday it is now an official partner of "Shark Tank", the critically acclaimed and multiple Emmy-award winning reality show that has reinvigorated entrepreneurship in America.

The new Amazon Launchpad Shark Tank Collection highlights products seen on Shark Tank, including the Hatch Baby, Third Wave Water and Stasher, among others.

The collaboration coincides with the premiere of “Shark Tank” season 10 and provides an opportunity for successfully funded Shark Tank startups and entrepreneurs to launch and showcase their products on Amazon, the world's biggest retailer.

The "Sharks" are multi-millionaire and billionaire tycoons who for nine seasons have invested in the best businesses and products that America has to offer.

They include billionaire Mark Cuban, owner and chairman of AXS TV and owner of the 2011 NBA champion Dallas Mavericks; real estate mogul Barbara Corcoran; "Queen of QVC" Lori Greiner; technology innovator Robert Herjavec; fashion and branding expert Daymond John; and venture capitalist Kevin O'Leary.

Amazon shares declined 1.5% to $1,761.43 by midsession.

FAANG Report: Amazon' could get hooked on advertising revenue

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) plans to donate 1,000 Apple Watches to a new research study into overeating and bulimia, a report by Apple Insider which quotes CNBC said.

The Binge Eating Genetics Initiative, or BINGE, is looking for biological changes brought on by either rapid and excessive eating, or by subsequently over-exercising or purging.

In a month-long study, researchers will examine whether Apple Watch's heart rate sensor can detect physical changes associated with these symptoms, the report said.

According to the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, at least 30 million Americans suffer from an eating disorder. And every 62 minutes, at least one person dies as a direct result of it.

Apple shares fell 1.56% to $218.64.

The price target for Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) was cut by Goldman Sachs and Raymond James ahead of the earnings data by the streaming giant which is due out on Tuesday, a report by CNBC said.

Goldman outlined a bullish case for the upcoming Netflix quarterly earnings but still lowered its "12-month price target from $470 to $430 to reflect the contraction in broader internet multiples."

"While broader market performance and rising rates concerns have been more important factors for stock price performance, we believe that upside to consensus expectations and what the strength in subscriber net additions says about Netflix's business, beyond just guidance for the next quarter, is likely to be a positive catalyst for the stock," Goldman analyst Heath Terry said in a research note to clients.

Raymond James also lowered its expectation for Netflix stock to $400 a share from $445 a share, saying the streaming company's growth will slow as interest rates continue to rise.

Netflix shares retreated 1.65% to $333.97.

READ: Alphabet's Google hit by data breach and did not report it over regulation fears

Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) said a study by New York University found that left-leaning organizations dominate political ads on Facebook and Twitter while right-wing advertisers outspend liberal groups on Google, The Guardian said in a report.

The study by computers scientists from NYU's Tandon School of Engineering of 884,000 recent political ads found that Donald Trump and his Make America Great Again political action committee had the largest number of ads of any candidate while a Republican group called the Senate Leadership Fund spent the most on ads.

The majority of spending on Google came from PACs (Political Actions Committees), which typically have large budgets and were responsible for 61% of ads on the search engine, the report said.

Google shares eased 0.78% to $1,101.38.

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) lowered the number of people whose accounts were hacked to 30 million from 50 million, the company said in a blog update. 

Some of the information the hackers accessed include username, gender, locale/language, relationship status, religion, hometown, self-reported current city, birthdate, device types used to access Facebook, education, work, the last 10 places they checked into or were tagged in, website, people or Pages they follow, and the 15 most recent searches.

Facebook said in the days ahead, they will send customized messages to the 30 million people affected to explain what information the attackers might have accessed, as well as steps they can take to help protect themselves, including from suspicious emails, text messages, or calls.

Facebook shares rose 0.81% to $154.99.

Reporting by Rene Pastor, contactable on

Mon, 15 Oct 2018 12:36:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon' could get hooked on advertising revenue; Netflix opening hub in New Mexico ]]> Retail behemoth Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) is now one of the world's largest online advertising companies, with ad revenues topping $2 billion in the second quarter of the year alone, and they could become reliant on that funding stream, a report by Fortune said.

Aside from its already flourishing Amazon Web Services (AWS), the retailer could become a company that relies on maximizing the time and the clicks people spend on their site -- like rivals Facebook and Google.

Piper Jaffray analyst Michael Olson actually expects Amazon’s ad sales to surpass AWS sales as early as 2021, making it a serious growth engine for the company.

This is still far behind what Google and Facebook bring in, but the rapid rise of Amazon’s ad business raises an interesting question. Namely, can Amazon avoid the same trap that has bedeviled other ad-driven behemoths: focusing on ads at the expense of user privacy?

Amazon shares added 0.1% to $1,866.46 by midsession.

READ: Amazon rings up more than US$10bn in annual sales from its global business customers

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) announced that Albuquerque, New Mexico, will be the site of a new US production hub which will bring upwards of $1 billion in production money to the state and up to 1,000 jobs per year in the area, Variety said in a report.

Netflix said it is in final negotiations to buy ABQ Studios, located in Albuquerque’s Mesa del Sol planned community, as the base for its operations in the state. The deal is the company’s first purchase of a production studio complex; terms of the deal aren’t being disclosed. ABQ Studios, which opened in 2007, is currently owned by Pacifica Ventures.

The move comes after Netflix set plans for a significant expansion of its presence in Los Angeles last week, signing a lease through 2031 on a 13-story tower in Hollywood set to be completed in 2020 that is adjacent to its existing LA offices and production facilities at the Sunset Bronson Studios lot.

Netflix stock rose 0.47% to $350.73.

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) has issued an update to the iOS12 to fix several bugs that have plagued iPhone XS and XS Max users since the phones were released, a report by The Verge said.

The update should fix one of the biggest issues on the iPhone XS and XS Max: users reported poor Wi-Fi reception compared to their previous iPhone X devices when used in their homes, but it doesn’t address the separate LTE issues.

It also resolves the widespread issue of iPhone XS devices requiring to be unlocked before recognizing the Lightning cable charger. There’s also a slightly lesser-known issue with the iPad keyboard that’s being fixed, the report said.

Apple shares went up 0.56% to $225.02.

READ: Facebook says hacking attack hit almost 50 million accounts

Facebook Inc's (NASDAQ:FB) new Portal video phone is designed to simplify video chatting as it tracks you around the room, but there is only one problem -- it is made by Mark Zuckerberg, a report by The Verge said.

The issue, of course, is trust, especially given the privacy scandals that have made customers wary of Facebook's connected devices, the report said.

There is a strong feeling of distrust about Facebook putting an always-on microphone and camera in a home.

The fact remains that this is a device whose launch was delayed in the midst of one privacy scandal (Cambridge Analytica) only to arrive in the midst of another one (50 million people hacked).

Facebook shares added 0.6% to $158.19.

Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) will not compete for a multibillion dollar cloud computing contract with the Pentagon because the project may conflict with its corporate mission, a report by CNN Business said.

Bids for the $10 billion contract are due by Friday, October 12. It's being eyed by Microsoft Corp (NASDAQ:MSFT), Oracle Corp (NYSE:ORCL) and Amazon. 

Separately, Google also debuted its Pixel 3 phone for 2018, a camera-free home contraol and a new detachable Chrome OS tablet, Cnet said in a report. The company also announced a tablet, laptop, smart home hub and AR partnerships with Marvel and Childish Gambino. 

Google shares were off 0.7% to $1,140.15. 

Tue, 09 Oct 2018 13:07:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon and Apple's denials of cyber-security hack apparently backed up by British security agency ]]> The National Cyber Security Centre, part of the UK intelligence and security organisation, GCHQ, has stuck its oar into the Apple and Amazon cybersecurity row.

It said it had no reason to doubt Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Apple Inc’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) assertions that they had not been caught up in a cybersecurity attack perpetrated, according to news Bloomberg, by Chinese espionage agencies.

READ Apple and Amazon refute Bloomberg allegations of hardware hack by Chinese spies

Bloomberg ran a long piece this week in which it alleged that hardware produced by Super Micro Inc (NASDAQ:SMCI), one of the world’s biggest suppliers of motherboards for computer servers, included microscopic microchips that could compromise network security.

It claimed that almost 30 US companies, among them Amazon and Apple, had used the modified motherboards at some point but the tech giants were not slow to refute Bloomberg’s claims.

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) said it had no reason “at this stage” to doubt the detailed assessments made by Amazon and Apple.

“The NCSC engages confidentially with security researchers and urges anybody with credible intelligence about these reports to contact us,” the eavesdropping agency said.

The NCSC seems more concerned about Russian attacks rather than Chinese. Yesterday, it released a bulletin in which it accused the GRU, the Russian military intelligence service, of “indiscriminate and reckless cyber attacks targeting political institutions, businesses, media and sport”.

The NCSC asserted that a number of cyber actors widely known to have been conducting cyber attacks around the world are, in fact, the GRU.

“These attacks have been conducted in flagrant violation of international law, have affected citizens in a large number of countries, including Russia, and have cost national economies millions of pounds,” the agency said.

Fri, 05 Oct 2018 14:11:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon and Apple deny Chinese spy chips found in server; use Google to book cab rides ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) denied reports that spy chips from China were found in server hardware they use, a report by USA Today said.

"At no time, past or present, have we ever found any issues relating to modified hardware or malicious chips in SuperMicro motherboards in any Elemental or Amazon systems. Nor have we engaged in an investigation with the government," a blog post by Amazon said.

"On this we can be very clear: Apple has never found malicious chips, ‘hardware manipulations’ or vulnerabilities purposely planted in any server," the company said in a statement.

The Bloomberg report claimed the goal of planting the chips was to secure long-term access to government networks and high-value corporate secrets by Beijing.

Amazon shares fell 2.64% to $1,901.14.

Apple shares declined 1.8% to $227.90. 

READ: Amazon raises minimum wage to $15 per hour as CEO Jeff Bezos admits critics of its pay scale were right

The stringent privacy laws of the European Union are making life harder for big technology companies such as Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), coming as it does after the social media giant admitted hackers got the personal information of 50 million users, a report by The Economist said.

Facebook is likely to face more limits on how it uses data under the European Commission’s new rules for the digital realm and of its privacy law, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

The attack on Facebook's systems took place when hackers exploited three separate bugs to extract snippets of code which let them take control of accounts, the report said.

Facebook stock lost 2.7% to $157.99.

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) will be showing a series on Madam C.J. Walker, the first female self-made millionaire in the country, a report by USA Today said. 

Basketball star Lebron James and actress Octavia Spencer will serve as executive producers of the series.

Walker is the story of a black woman born to newly freed slaves who was orphaned at 7, and went from earning $1.50 as a washerwoman to running a business empire selling hair care products targeted at African-American women, the report said. The story has beguiled everyone from her neighbors to historians who wanted to chronicle her life.

Netflix stock tumbled 4% to $361.68.

READ: Facebook says hacking attack hit almost 50 million accounts

Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is rolling out a feature to Google Assistants that lets you book a cab ride on Uber or Lyft by using your voice, a report by CNBC said.

Until now, Google Maps users were able to select a destination and then choose Uber, Lyft, or one of several other services to take them somewhere. But it required some poking around Google Maps and typing in your destination.

Google has taken that and embedded its smart voice assistant. That means if you own a Google Home, an Android phone, or use the Google Assistant on an iPhone, you can ask for a ride anywhere by just using your voice, the report said.

Google shares lost 3.5% to $1,160.18.

Thu, 04 Oct 2018 14:07:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon raises minimum wage to $15 per hour as CEO Jeff Bezos admits critics of its pay scale were right ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) announced on Tuesday it is increasing its minimum wage to $15 for all full-time, part-time, temporary workers that include those hired by agencies, and seasonal employees across the United States effective November 1.

The new Amazon $15 minimum wage will benefit more than 250,000 Amazon employees, as well as over 100,000 seasonal employees who will be hired at Amazon sites across the country during the Christmas holiday season. 

“We listened to our critics, thought hard about what we wanted to do, and decided we want to lead,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon Founder and CEO. “We’re excited about this change and encourage our competitors and other large employers to join us.”

Thank you @SenSanders. We’re excited about this, and also hope others will join in.

— Jeff Bezos (@JeffBezos) October 2, 2018

The company had come under fire from critics, including those in the US Congress, particularly US Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), who wanted to impose a tax on Amazon because some of its employees were reportedly using food stamps and other forms of public assistance to make ends meet.

FAANG Report: BEZOS Act to hit Amazon, Walmart

Amazon’s public policy team said they will also begin advocating for an increase in the federal minimum wage.

“We will be working to gain Congressional support for an increase in the federal minimum wage. The current rate of $7.25 was set nearly a decade ago,” said Jay Carney, Senior Vice President of Amazon Global Corporate Affairs. “We intend to advocate for a minimum wage increase that will have a profound impact on the lives of tens of millions of people and families across this country.”

Amazon's wage hike should have a minimal impact on profitability, said Loop Capital. Analyst Anthony Chukumba views the's announcement of a minimum wage hike to $15 per hour as a "savvy move" that should result in lower fulfillment center employee turnover.

The news is a "public relations victory" for Amazon, Chukumba told investors in a research note. He believes the wage increase will have a "fairly limited" on the company's overall profitability. The analyst keeps a Buy rating on Amazon with a $2,200 price target. 

Amazon shares were trading 0.21% up at $2,008.66.

READ: Amazon rings up more than US$10bn in annual sales from its global business customers

Amazon said employees will continue to receive the following benefits: comprehensive health care, including medical, dental, and vision coverage, company-paid life and disability insurance, up to 20 weeks of paid parental leave, matching contributions to their 401k pension fund, Career Choice, which pre-pays 95% of associates’ tuition for courses in high-demand fields, whether those jobs are at Amazon or another company.

The other benefits are Career Skills, which trains hourly associates in critical job skills like resume writing, how to communicate effectively, and computer basics.

Amazon has more than 575,000 employees worldwide. 

Tue, 02 Oct 2018 11:02:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon opens 4-star store in Manhattan; Netflix trolls Kevin Spacey in 'House of Cards' ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) opened on Thursday a store called Amazon 4-star in the SoHo neighborhood of Manhattan in New York City, a report by The Amazon Blog said.

Throughout the store, there are features like “Most-Wished-For,” a collection of products that are most added to Wish Lists; “Trending Around NYC,” hot products that NYC-area customers are buying on; “Frequently Bought Together”; and “Amazon Exclusives.”, the Amazon Blog said.

The average rating of all the products in Amazon 4-star is 4.4 stars, and collectively, the products in store have earned more than 1.8 million 5-star customer reviews. The store is open every day of the week.

Amazon stocks were up 1.83% at $2,010.90.

READ: Amazon takes on Main street with the launch of more cashier-less grocery stores

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) released a trailer on Thursday for House of Cards' sixth and final season, which seems to be trolling Kevin Spacey for the behavior that got him fired from the show, Ad Week said.

Production on Season 6 was suspended last November in light of sexual harassment allegations against Spacey, who starred as President Frank Underwood.

In December, Netflix committed to an eight-episode final season of the series, without Spacey, that would focus on Robin Wright who plays Spacey’s wife, Claire Underwood.

Netflix stock gained 0.3% to $379.02.

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares should keep rising even after its big gains this year as J.P. Morgan initiated coverage of the iPhone maker, a report by CNBC said.

Apple is "transforming from a hardware company to a services company faster than investors had expected, which is driving financial and valuation upside," analyst Samik Chatterjee said in a note to clients.

Chatterjee is the new analyst covering Apple for J.P. Morgan. The firm last covered the smartphone maker in October 2017.

Apple shares were up 2.21% to $225.30.

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is launching another virtual reality headset that will not need a personal computer to work, a report by CNN Tech Said.

Facebook unveiled the hardware at the Oculus Connect conference in San Francisco. The latest VR headset combined the mobility of the standalone, $199 Oculus Go, with some of the power of Oculus Rift, which must be connected to a computer to work.

The company said users will be able to wander around in up to 4,000 square feet of space while using the headset, the report said.

Facebook shares rose 1.92% to $170.16. 

FAANG Report: Google snubs US Senate hearing on election meddling

Executives of Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) will be questioned by lawmakers from the US Congress on Friday after months of avoiding the spotlight, The New York Times said.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai will be meeting with more than two dozen Republicans to discuss complaints the company is trying to silence conservatice voices.

The Friday meeting will cap a week of tech-related sessions in Washington in which Google - in the cross hairs of Silicon Valley’s conservative critics since late summer - has played a starring role, The Times said.

Google stock added 1.55% to $1,198.78.

Thu, 27 Sep 2018 11:11:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon's home assistant Alexa suffers a blackout in Europe; Apply may rally to new highs ]]> Inc's (NASDAQ:AMZN) Alexa home assistant went missing in action in Europe for parts of Wednesday after it went down in Germany, Spain and portions of the United Kingdom, a report by The Verge said.

It is not clear what caused the outage, although one publication said it might have been due to a reported error at the Amazon Web Services facility in Ireland.

Most people online seemed to be upset that Amazon gave no update or word about what was happening and why, especially since Amazon wants people to turn their homes into complete Alexa hubs, down to their microwaves, the report said. 

Amazon shares were up almost 0.8% to $1,990.22.

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares may now be in position to carve out new all-time highs and could get another boost when it reports new earnings in late October, a report by CNBC said.

"Apple is in a very solid technical position," founder Todd Gordon said on CNBC's "Trading Nation." Apple shares have gained more than 10% since its market cap crossed $1 trillion for the first time last month, becoming the first US company to do so.

Gordon noted that on a chart of Apple, the stock has been trading in an upward parallel channel, and is now moving toward the higher end of that channel.

Apple shares added 0.01% to $222.23.

READ: Facebook Stories hits 300M daily active users and welcomes advertisers to the feature

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) has found itself in the middle of another political dispute after police in Hong Kong asked the social media giant to remove the official page of the pro-independence National Party, a report by Bloomberg said.

The National Party was given an unprecedented ban, with threats of fines and imprisonment for those aiding the group. The request puts Facebook in a difficult position, and refusal could hamper any future efforts by the company to expand in China.

While China censors media outlets and bans Facebook, Twitter and Alphabet Inc’s Google in mainland China, the special administrative region of Hong Kong has relatively fewer restrictions on the press and the internet.

Facebook shares were 1.8% higher at $167.92. 

Still on China, a former research scientist for Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Jack Poulson, said in a letter to the US Senate that they should demand answers from the company on a censored search engine known as Project Dragonfly being developed by the search giant for Beijing, a report by The Guardian said.

Poulson decried a “pattern of unethical and unaccountable decision making from company leadership”, chief among which was the company’s secrecy around Project Dragonfly, which he described as “a version of Google Search tailored to the censorship and surveillance demands of the Chinese government”, the report said.

He said a prototype feature that would allow a Chinese partner company to access a user’s search history by querying their phone number; an “extensive censorship blacklist” for terms including “human rights”, “student protest” and “Nobel prize”; and code that ensures that only government-approved data would be returned for searches about air quality.

Google stock gained 0.36% to $1,188.97.

READ: Google ends ban on cryptocurrency-related advertising

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) said its special during the US Thanksgiving holiday will be a marathon showing of Mystery Science Theater 3000, a report by Engadget said.

The marathon in 2018 will come with a difference as that will be the day when the new Season 12 will arrive on screens.

When the show was on Comedy Central, there would be a Thanksgiving Day marathon every year, offering 10 or so movies back-to-back, of the show.

Netflix stock rose 2.8% to $379.84.  

Wed, 26 Sep 2018 15:10:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon's market cap could hit $1.5 trillion in two years; Instagram founders abandon Facebook ]]> Inc's (NASDAQ:AMZN) market cap may soar to $1.5 trillion in two years as the stock could hit $3,000 per share, a Jefferies analyst was quoted by CNBC news as saying.

Analyst Brent Thill said the explosive growth of the world's largest retailer will be driven by the company's Prime, cloud and advertising businesses. Amazon is the second US company to recently hit a market value of $1 trillion behind smartphone maker Apple.

"In our view, many of its embedded growth opportunities are underappreciated. AWS (Amazon Web Services), advertising and subscription are all growing — two times faster than the core and are more profitable," Thill said.

Amazon stock rose 1% to $1,954.56.

READ: Qualcomm accuses Apple of sharing trade secrets with Intel in a plot to replace its chips

Apple Inc's (NASDAQ:AAPL) new iPhones may be enjoying "healthy" sales volumes based on the attractive deals being offered by mobile carriers, a report by Barron's said.

Analysts from RBC Capital Markets said the newest lineup of phones could help drive "low-to-mid single digit growth this cycle" for the company.

It said that the latest round of iPhone promotions looks “more attractive” than they did last year. Verizon, for example, has an offer to buy one new iPhone and get $700 off another with a new line. There are also offers from Sprint, T-Mobile US and AT&T.

Apple shares were up 0.75% to $222.44.

The founders of Instagram, Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, are leaving Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) after growing tensions with its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, over the direction of the photo-sharing app, a report by Bloomberg said.

The pair were frustrated with an uptick in day-to-day involvement by Zuckerberg, who has become more reliant on Instagram in planning for Facebook’s future, the report said.

The two had been able to keep the brand and product independent while relying on Facebook’s infrastructure and resources to grow, Bloomberg added.

Facebook shares were flat at $165.41.

READ: Google ends ban on cryptocurrency-related advertising 

The CEO of Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Sundar Pichai, will meet with members of the US Congress on both sides of the aisle to discuss the company's business dealings in China and accusations of political bias, a report by CNBC said.

Google and its parent company Alphabet were blistered last month for snubbing a congressional hearing last month on election meddling.

Google's boss will address issues ranging from the firm's business dealings in China to allegations of political bias at the meeting with Republican officials. The meeting was organized by Republican House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, the report said.

Google stock gained 0.9% to $1,184.08.

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) is doubling down on its successful formula of commissioning original science-fiction and comedy series as the streaming giant seeks to maintain its lead over competitors, a report by Hollywood Reporter said.

The report quoted a study by Ampere Analysis which found that Netflix has more than 250 new commissions planned, a figure that will more than double the 229 originals in the Netflix catalog.

“All the major players have been expanding the number of original commissions in the face of an increasingly competitive market,” said Richard Cooper, an analyst at Ampere.

Netflix shares were lower by 0.46% at $367.90.

Tue, 25 Sep 2018 13:30:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon launches biggest lineup of new devices as Alexa invades every corner of your house ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) introduced a dizzying array of new Echo devices, Echo companion devices, and Amazon smart-home devices on Thursday, making the home assistant Alexa omnipresent by inserting it into any room in the house — and even in your car.

“We want you to have access to Alexa everywhere — in your kitchen, in your living room, in your office, and now in your car or truck,” said Tom Taylor, the senior vice-president for Amazon Alexa.

Amazon held an event in Seattle to introduce its latest smart devices. They include the All-new Echo Dot, now with a new speaker for louder and crisper sound, an updated fabric design, and still only US$49.99. There is the Echo Plus, with a built-in Zigbee hub, plus an upgraded speaker and a new design, for US$149.99

There is also the Echo Show, which has an upgraded speaker, a 10-inch HD display, and a built-in smart home hub, for US$229.99. There is also the Echo Wall Clock, which connects to your Echo device to visually enhance timers, alarms and reminders for US$29.99.

READ: Amazon muscles into the business of selling live Christmas trees

Then there is the Echo Auto, which brings Alexa right into the car. 

Echo Auto is an easy way to add the power of Alexa to the car or truck. With an eight-microphone array designed for in-car acoustics and speech recognition technology, Echo Auto lets Alexa hear you over music, A/C, and road noise, Amazon said.

The device is powered by the car's 12V power outlet or USB port and connects to the stereo system through a 3.5 mm audio jack or Bluetooth connection. It connects to Alexa through the Alexa app on your smartphone and uses the existing phone plan to access a range of features such as music, navigation, calling, and more.

The company has also introduced Alexa Guard, which can send alerts about the sound of glass-breaking, smoke detectors, or carbon monoxide alarms detected in your home.

Alexa can also intuitively turn lights on and off to help deter intruders using Away Lighting and can integrate with alarm systems from Ring and ADT to keep your home safe. This feature will be available on select Echo devices later this year.

READ: Amazon rings up more than US$10bn in annual sales from its global business customers

The new home devices include the AmazonBasics Microwave, a compact countertop microwave that connects to your Echo device to make cooking easier for US$59.99. The Amazon Basics Microwave connects to the Echo device and makes cooking easier.

You can ask Alexa to reheat, defrost, or microwave for your desired cook time and power level. There are also a variety of quick-cook voice presets such as, “Alexa, microwave two potatoes” or “Alexa, reheat a cup of coffee” and the AmazonBasics Microwave takes care of the rest.

Since Alexa is always getting smarter, new quick-cook voice presets will be added regularly.

“We’re excited to expand the number of ways that customers can add Alexa to their homes and their vehicles, so they can use Alexa to make their lives more convenient and easy — whether it’s asking for the traffic on your drive home, checking your email in the morning, or simply saying ‘Alexa, good night’ to turn off your lights and lock your door," said Taylor.

The other devices include the Echo Input, which adds Alexa to an existing speaker for US$34.99. The Echo Sub will add rich bass to music playback on Echo devices for US$129.99.

Next is the Echo Link, which connects the home stereo system to stream high-fidelity music for US$199.99. There is the Echo Link Amp, a 60W, 2-channel built-in amplifier to stream high-fidelity music to active or passive speakers for US$299.99.

The Amazon Smart Plug will control compatible lights, fans, coffee makers, and more for US$24.99

Amazon is the world's biggest online retailer. The company is based in Seattle, Washington.

Thu, 20 Sep 2018 15:44:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon takes on Main street with the launch of more cashier-less grocery stores ]]> The retailing giant (NASDAQ:AMZN) is going mano-a-mano with businesses on Main Street by introducing more cashier-less grocery stores.

Just this week, Amazon opened its first store without checkout lines in Chicago. The store adds to Amazon’s small fleet of three Amazon Go stores in Seattle that have been opened in the past two years, according to a report in The Verge.

Amazon Go stores are different than their rivals as they tend to open early (7AM) and close late (8 PM) and don’t have checkout lines. They sell groceries as well as grab-and-go food items, but customers pick up their chosen items and leave the store without paying.

Read: Amazon muscles into the business of selling live Christmas trees

Customers are able to avoid the usual payment methods as the stores take advantage of cameras and sensors to figure out what people are purchasing. Customers scan an Amazon Go app as they make their way into the store and after buying what they require via a virtual cart, the goods are automatically added to their Amazon account bill.

Amazon is reportedly looking into adding an Amazon Go store in San Francisco or Los Angeles as well as more stores in Seattle, according to The Verge.

The e-commerce giant is the second US company to hit a US$1 trillion valuation and has disrupted everything from the business of selling books to grocery shopping.

Amazon shares slipped 0.8% in Wednesday’s afternoon session to US$1,926.42.

Wed, 19 Sep 2018 15:57:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Netflix and HBO fight to a draw at Emmy awards; Google signs deal with car alliance ]]> Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) fought to a draw in its head-to-head battle with HBO at the Emmy's, with the premium cable channel and the streaming service winning 23 awards each, a report by Variety said.

Netflix was aided by shows like “The Crown,” which nabbed 13 total nominations; “Stranger Things,” which received 12; Western drama “Godless,” also with 12; and comedy series “GLOW” with 10.

“Game of Thrones” garnered the most nominations for HBO with 22. Bill Hader’s dark comedy “Barry” picked up 13 for its freshman season, while “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver” had nine.

Netflix had stunned the entertainment industry when the nominations for the Emmys went out in July as it topped HBO for the total number of nominations with 112, compared to HBO's 108.

Netflix stock rose 2.6% to trade at US$359.50.

FAANG Report: 'Black-ish' creator moves to Netflix after Disney shelves anti-Trump episode; Google faces huge fine

Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) has signed a deal with the Renault-Nissan-Mistubishi Alliance to provide in-car infotainment systems that run on the Adnroid operating system, a report by Fortune said.

The Google-powered media display will be in cars starting in 2021. Taken together, the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance sells more cars than any other auto maker, with combined sales of 10.6 million vehicles last year and 5.5 million in the first half of this year.

The deal puts pressure on Google and alliance competitors to improve their services and consider similar deals, the report added.

Google shares were up almost 0.9% to US$1,166.17.

Facebook Inc's (NASDAQ:FB) ad-targeting system is being used by some employers to discriminate based on gender, the latest in a string of cases against the social media giant, CNN Tech said in a report.

The ACLU, the law firm Outten & Golden, and the labor union Communications Workers of America filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opprtunity Commission against Facebook and 10 other employers for allegedly using Facebook to discriminate against potential job seekers.

The complaint was filed on behalf of three women job seekers along with a broader class of women represented by the labor union. 

Facebook shares added 0.25% to US$160.99.

READ: Apple introduces three new super-powered iPhones and upgraded Apple Watch in Hollywood-style show

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) CEO Tim Cook defended the pricing of the company's latest iPhones on the show "Good Morning America", a report by ABC, where the show is aired, said.

Apple executives unveiled three new iPhones last week in California -- the tech giant's biggest and most expensive iPhones to date.

The Xs starts at US$999 while the Xs Max has a US$1,099 price tag. A cheaper model called the Xr comes in at US$749.

Shares of Apple increased by 1.2% to US$220.57.

Some two-thirds of Inc's (NASDAQ:AMZN) Prime members would try a free online bank account from the e-commerce giant as the world's biggest retailer apperas to be looking at crashing the part in the banking industry, a report in CNBC said.

Expectations have been high since it was reported in March that Amazon is in talks with banks including J.P. Morgan Chase and Capital One to create a checking-account like product for its customers.

Since then, big US lenders including Chase and Citigroup have announced or rolled out digital-only accounts targeting some of the same millennial customers that the Amazon product may appeal to.

Amazon shares were 1.8% higher at US$1,942.69.

Tue, 18 Sep 2018 10:46:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon should split retail and web segments to avoid anti-trust scrutiny, says Citi Research ]]> Inc’s (NASDAQ:AMZN) share price has found itself at the mercy of US President Donald Trump’s tweets in the past. Trump has called for greater taxes on the company, saying that the e-commerce giant has been using the US Postal Service as its “delivery boy” and that the Washington Post, owned by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, has covered the Trump administration unfairly since Amazon lost a case involving internet sales taxes.

Citi Research analysts expressed concerns about the company facing anti-trust regulations, suggesting that Amazon split its retail and web services divisions to escape rising regulatory pressure.

READ: FAANG Report: Amazon under fire over bribery claims; Google admits changing phone settings remotely

"There has been greater noise of late regarding the desire to investigate and potentially regulate the company," said analyst Mark May said in a note shared by CNBC.

"A smaller market cap Amazon retail business may bring (slightly) less attention to its market size and dominance," he added.

If separated, its retail business would be valued at around US$400bn while it’s Amazon Web Services segment would be worth around US$600bn, according to May.

May listed several other reasons a split may be the way to go, including improving shareholder selection, avoiding conflicts of interest and planning for Bezos’ succession.

The analyst noted that the company’s recent trillion-dollar valuation milestone and Bezos’ status as the world’s richest person wasn’t exactly low-key.

Nevertheless, Citi Research reiterated a Buy rating with a price target of US$2,250, calling the e-commerce titan a top pick.

Shares of Amazon were down more than 2% to US$1,924.21 in Monday afternoon trading.

Mon, 17 Sep 2018 14:45:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon under fire over bribery claims; Google admits changing phone settings remotely ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) is investigating claims that employees accepted bribes in return for leaking confidential sales data, deleting negative reviews and restoring banned accounts, a report by the BBC said.

The report quoted the Wall Street Journal to state that the range of bribery payments was from US$80 to US$2,000 and that the practice was particularly "pronounced in China".

Amazon said it had "zero tolerance" for the abuse of its systems and pledged to take swift action against sellers on its site who engaged in this behavior, "including terminating their selling accounts, deleting reviews, withholding funds and taking legal action".

Shares of Amazon dropped 2.55% to US$1,920.

FAANG Report:Amazon denies poor work conditions as stock hits US$2K; Facebook sorry on Holocaust picture

Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) admitted changing phone settings remotely without the consent of users and has apologized as a result, a BBC report said.

Android phone users had noticed that the battery saver setting was remotely activated and this affects how often apps update and work in the background. Google went to discussion site Reddit to explain it was conducting an internal test that was "mistakenly" rolled out more widely, the report said.

The affected devices appeared to be running the Android Pie operating system.

Google shares were lower by 1.15% to US$1,159. 

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) is rolling out additional and pricier AppleCare protection options which include monthly plans and theft and loss protection for its new, bigger iPhones, according to a report by USA Today.

The new plans can guard against higher repair and replacement costs. For the new iPhone XS and XS Max, AppleCare with theft and loss protection is US$299 for two years of coverage -  US$100 more than the company's standard extended warranty plan that protects phones from accidental damage and defects, the report said.

The deductible for theft or loss is US$269 for these top models, which is comparable to insurance offered by carriers.

Apple shares fell 1.67% to US$220.10.

READ: Apple introduces three new super-powered iPhones and upgraded Apple Watch in Hollywood-style show

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) said it is rolling out a disaster response tool called Community Help for the Facebook Lite app, a report by Forbes said.

Community Help enables users to share updates, communicate with others and find shelters during a crisis. And Community Help will be available on Facebook Lite across 100 countries, the report explained.

Separately, a research note by Oppenheimer Equity Research said on Monday the social networking giant is hiring chip engineers and designing at least one ASIC. "We have a chip we’re building, but it’s not our primary focus,” said Jason Taylor, vice president of infrastructure at Facebook.

Shares of Facebook lost 1.4% to US$160.05, 

Plans by Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) to deploy ads to promote its original content may backfire because a study showed that up to a quarter of its subscribers may abandon the video streaming service if it runs ads, a report by CNBC said.

Netflix had planned to spend more than US48bn this year on more than 700 original shows.

A study conducted by Hub entertainment Research said almost a quarter (23%) of consumers would cancel their subscription if ads showed up on Netflix. Less than half would definitely or probably keep Netflix even with ads, the study said.

Netflix shares declined 2.2% to US$356.55. 

Mon, 17 Sep 2018 11:10:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon's new online portal called 'Storefronts' shines spotlight on small businesses ]]> The e-commerce behemoth (NASDAQ:AMZN) is attempting to play nice with small and medium-sized businesses with the introduction of ‘Amazon Storefronts,’ a new online store that promotes their goods.

Kicking off its efforts in the US first, Amazon’s new online store showcases products from over 20,000 mom-and-pop-style businesses across all 50 states. Customers can browse for goods via Storefront’s 25 categories, which include pet supplies, apparel, electronics and jewelry.

The move comes with advantages for Amazon as featuring these companies is likely to entice other businesses to set up shop on Amazon. It also enables Amazon to say it supports struggling retailers at a time when it is coming under attack for putting tremendous commercial pressure on its brick-and-mortar rivals by undercutting their prices.

Read: Amazon muscles into the business of selling live Christmas trees

To support the launch of its new online portal, Amazon is unveiling its first-ever national TV commercial featuring retail businesses that sell on Amazon. The ad will attempt to show how Amazon is actually a ‘big collection of small’.

In a statement, Nicholas Denissen, a vice-president with Amazon, said his employer is looking to “champion the success” of its smaller rivals with the launch of Storefronts.

“We’ve created a custom, one-stop shopping experience for customers looking for interesting, innovative and high-quality products from American businesses from all across the country,” Denissen said.

More than 300,000 small and medium-sized businesses in the US sell goods via Amazon.

Amazon shares were down slightly to US$1,957.10 in Monday's pre-market session.

Mon, 17 Sep 2018 08:03:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon muscles into the business of selling live Christmas trees ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN), the retail behemoth that owns grocery stores and sells everything from whole fruit to paperback books, is muscling into the business of live Christmas trees.

This is the first year Amazon will be selling live trees bigger than three feet. Amazon said the trees would include Douglas firs and Norfolk Island Pines, a report by the AP said. They will be shipped in a large box with no water.

READ: Amazon rings up more than US$10bn in annual sales from its global business customers

Each tree will be shipped within 10 days of being cut down. Some will qualify for Prime free shipping, and Amazon will offer pre-orders so shoppers can pick a delivery date, the AP report added.

Amazon, the second US company to hit a US$1 trillion valuation, has disrupted everything from the business of selling books to grocery shopping. 

The question will be if Americans who are used to going to neighborhood yards or backlots to pick and bring home their own trees will opt to buy the tree online.


Tue, 11 Sep 2018 17:03:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon rings up more than US$10bn in annual sales from its global business customers ]]> Retail behemoth Inc's (NASDAQ:AMZN) reported on Tuesday annualized sales of more than US$10bn from the millions of business customers and sellers around the world on its Amazon Business system and that it is steadily expanding to more countries in the future.

In the US alone, Amazon Business serves nearly 80% of the 100 largest enrollment education organizations, 55 of the Fortune 100 companies, more than half of the 100 biggest hospital systems and more than 40% of the 100 most populous local governments, Amazon said in a statement.

Third party sellers make up more than 50% of the US$10bn in global sales, allowing customers to find and purchase from new suppliers. With Seller Credentials, customers can also meet purchasing needs with local, minority, and women-owned businesses.

Amazon Business also offers access to nearly 150,000 US business sellers, hundreds of thousands more globally and hundreds of millions of products, it added.

READ: Amazon cracks US$1 trillion value, but then rows back

"Our customers range from sole proprietors to large enterprises with tens of thousands of employees on a single account," it said. "This year, we expanded our global marketplace to France, Italy and Spain. With these additions, Amazon Business is now live in eight countries, including the United States, Germany, United Kingdom, Japan and India."

Companies can manage their procurement needs and purchase supplies locally where Amazon Business is available. Sellers have the opportunity to grow their businesses by reaching new customers across these eight countries, from small companies to multi-national organizations.

Amazon said it is trying to bring more transparency into the procurement process, including Business Prime Shipping, Curation, and Workflow Approvals. The retailer said they are able to integrate directly into e-procurement systems and create intuitive buying experiences.

Shares of Amazon were down 0.3% at US$1,933.16 in early trade on Tuesday.

Amazon is the world's biggest retailer. It is an electronic commerce and cloud computing company based in Seattle, Washington.

Tue, 11 Sep 2018 09:48:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: BEZOS Act to hit Amazon, Walmart; search monster Google turns 20 years old ]]> US Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and another US lawmaker introduced legislation Thursday against companies including Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) that they call the "Stop BEZOS" Act, after Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, that will tax corporations for every dollar that their low-wage workers receive in government health care benefits or food stamps, a report by CNBC said.

The bill is aimed at shaming companies such as Amazon and Walmart Inc (NYSE:WMT). For months, Sanders juxtaposed the enormous wealth of Bezos with reports Amazon warehouse workers are paid less than the industry average and rely on food stamps. Bezos is the world's richest man with a net worth of more than US$168bn.

Amazon strenuously disputed the accusations.

Shares of Amazon dropped nearly 3% to trade at US$1,937.60, falling below the US$2,000 level it recently pierced. It had hit an all-time record of US$2,050.50 in its run to become the second US company with a market capitalization of US$1 trillion.

FAANG Report:Amazon denies poor work conditions as stock hits US$2K; Facebook sorry on Holocaust picture

Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is no longer a teen as the company turned 20 years old on September 4, a report by the Verge said.

It said no technology company is arguably more responsible for shaping the modern internet and modern life than Google. The company that started as a search engine now manages eight products with more than 1 billion users each, the report said.

Google's stock fell 2.65% to US$1,155.09. 

Nearly half of young users have deleted the app of social media giant Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) from their phone in the last year, driven away by the scandals which have hit its platform, a report by CNBC said.

A survey by the Pew Research Center of 3,400 Facebook users in May and June found that 44% of those ages 18 to 29 said they have deleted the app although some reinstalled it later. The survey measures only the core Facebook app and may not necessarily spell dire news for the company as a whole, the report said.

Facebook shares slid almost 3.8% to US$160.89.

READ: Facebook unfriended by Wall Street as US$100bn wiped from market value

The takeover by Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) of UK-based music app Shazam has been cleared by EU regulators, a report by Sky News said.

The main concern was that a takeover of the song recognition tool could put rivals of Apple Music at a disadvantage. The regulators ruled on Thursday the merged entity would not have a unique advantage and Apple's competitors would still have the opportunity to access and use similar databases, the report said.

Apple shares were down 1.8% to US$222.79.

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) has come to the rescue of the show "Designated Survivor" which will now go into a third season, a report by Collider said.

The drama led by actor Kiefer Sutherland was canceled recently after two seasons, but Netflix ordered 10 episodes to air in 2019. Sutherland portrays Tom Kirkman, is a nondescript politician who comes US president after the elected leader and everyone else in the line of succession is killed in an attack that he must solve, the report said.

Shares of Netflix added 0.74% to US$343.80.



Thu, 06 Sep 2018 13:13:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, JPMorgan tap Jack Stoddard as COO for new joint health venture, says CNBC ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN), Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.B) and JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) reportedly have plucked a chief operating officer to pitch in with the oversight of their new joint health partnership, per CNBC.

The trio of companies has brought on Jack Stoddard, the former general manager for digital health at Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA), to serve alongside writer and doctor Atul Gawande who is at the helm as the CEO of their separate company that will provide healthcare to US employees and their families.

Stoddard was formerly on the starting team of the health technology company Accolade, a Comcast Ventures-backed start-up that works with employees to take care of their health benefits, according to CNBC.

The efforts by Berkshire boss Warren Buffett, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon and Amazon chief Jeff Bezos to come up with a way to slash the cost of company healthcare has generated considerable buzz as their new joint venture may one day offer an industry-changing model that other companies look to for guidance.

Read: Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan to form healthcare company for employees

Warren Buffett said combining resources with Amazon and JPMorgan mean they can attract the country’s best talent, check the rise in health costs and enhance patient satisfaction and outcomes.

“The ballooning costs of healthcare act as a hungry tapeworm on the American economy,” Buffett said. “Our group does not come to this problem with answers. But we also do not accept it as inevitable.”

JPMorgan chairman and chief executive Jamie Dimon, meanwhile, said his employees want “transparency, knowledge and control” when it comes to managing their healthcare.

“The three of our companies have extraordinary resources, and our goal is to create solutions that benefit our US employees, their families and potentially, all Americans,” he said.

Tue, 04 Sep 2018 15:56:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon cracks US$1 trillion value, but then rows back ]]> Inc (NASDAQ;AMZN) briefly jumped over the US$1 trillion level, becoming the second US company after Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) to have a market value over the psychological level.

Shares of Amazon hit an all-time record of US$2,050.50, pushing the value of the retail behemoth over the level before easing back to trade at US$2,034.97, up 1.12% on the day.

READ: Amazon upgrade by Morgan Stanley could make it second US company with US$1 trillion valuation

The retail giant has been on a tear, moving past the US$2,000 mark as upgrades inspired further investor buying in the stock.

Tue, 04 Sep 2018 12:02:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report:Amazon denies poor work conditions as stock hits US$2K; Facebook sorry on Holocaust picture ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) rejected on Thursday rejected the criticism from US Senator Bernie Sanders about its work conditions, saying its pay and benefits are competitive with other retailers, a report by CNN Money said. 

Sanders, who ran for US president in 2016, said Amazon and other big companies should be slapped a special tax because they employ workers who collect food stamps and other public assistance.

Amazon said the claim is "inaccurate and misleading", adding employees are paid more than US$15 an hour, including cash, stock and incentive bonuses. Amazon is owned by Jeff Bezos, one of the richest men on the planet.

Sanders fired back:

.@amazon, if our claims about wages and working conditions at Amazon are inaccurate then prove it.

Make public the number of people you hire through temporary staffing agencies like Integrity Staffing Solutions and make public the hourly rate and benefits those workers earn.

— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) August 29, 2018

Amazon stock soared on Thursday, hitting a record high of US$2,025.57, and was trading by midday at US$2,023.27, up 1.26% for the session. 

Wall Street analysts believe Amazon will become the second US company after Apple to reach US$1 trillion in value.

READ: Amazon upgrade by Morgan Stanley could make it second US company with US$1 trillion valuation

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) has apologized to the Anne Frank Center for removing nude images of children holocaust victims because such naked pictures are banned on the platform, Business Insider reported.

The post featured an image of naked and emaciated children during the Holocaust, when six million Jews were murdered by Nazi Germany. The post was later restored.

Shares of Facebook were up 1.85% at US$179.16.

Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) has released the trailer for the final film of iconic director Orson Welles, a report by Tech Crunch said.

The film is "The Other Side of the Wind". Since his death in 1985, Welles supporters have tried to complete the film but they have been stymied by legal and financial issues, the report said.

Netflix stock traded 1.57% higher at US$373.83.

FAANG Report: Trump claims Google suppressing good news about him; Amazon in new Canada prime plan

Alphabet's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), the search giant accused by US President Donald Trump of hiding the good news about his administration, is not guilty of rigging news stories against the current occupant of the White House, a report by Politifact said.

Trump had tweeted that 96% of Google News results "are from national left-wing media." Politifact said the conservative website categorized any media outlet not expressly conservative as being part of the 'left.'

"The methodology essentially preordains that a large percentage of coverage captured by Google will be what the study defines as "left," which is wrong. We rate the statement (by Trump) False," Politifact said.

Shares of Google inched up 0.01% to US$1,249.37. 

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) is among the tech giants that stands to lose the most if the trade conflict with China gets worse, a report by CNBC said.

The report said that so far, cell phones have been exempt from Trump's move to pressure China on trade, partly because of Apple chief executive Tim Cook's personal lobbying, the report said in quoting CFRA analyst Angelo Zino.

Apple shares added 1.2% to US$225.69.




Thu, 30 Aug 2018 12:35:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon upgrade by Morgan Stanley could make it second US company with US$1 trillion valuation ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) was given an upgrade by investment bank Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS), a move that could make the e-commerce giant the second US company with a valuation topping US$1tn after iPhone maker Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL).

Morgan Stanley analyst Brian Nowak said in a note to clients that it had increased its price target for Amazon shares to US$2,500 from US$1,850, representing a nearly 30% upside to the Tuesday close of US$1,932.82, a report by CNBC said. The stock was up 1.15% in premarket trade at US$1,955.

At a price of US$2,500 per share, that would give Amazon a market valuation of US$1.2tn. Nowak reiterated Morgan Stanley's overweight rating for the stock, the CNBC report said.

READ: Apple beats Amazon in race to a $1 trillion market cap

"We have increasing confidence that Amazon's rapidly growing, increasingly large, high margin revenue streams (advertising, Amazon Web Services, subscriptions) will drive higher profitability and continued upward estimate revisions," the CNBC report quoted Nowak as writing. 

The analyst added Amazon's high-profit margin businesses such as cloud computing, subscriptions and advertising will generate nearly US$45bn in profit by 2020, compared with an estimated US$25bn in 2018.

Amazon is an electronic e-commerce and cloud computing company based in Seattle, Washington. It is the largest internet retailer in the world.

Wed, 29 Aug 2018 08:27:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG Report: Amazon's value may hit US$2.5 trillion by 2024; Google's latest feature delivers 'good news' ]]> (NASDAQ:AMZN), which lost the race to become the first US company with a value of US$1 trillion, may hit a market value of US$2.5 trillion by 2024, a report by CNBC said. The report cited MKM Partners' Rob Sandereson saying the retail behemoth is poised to gain more market share and its cloud business in Amazon Web Services could be worth US$1tn in six years, which would top the market cap of the entire company at this time of US$929bn. Sanderson raised his 12-month price target for Amazon to US$2,215 from US$1,840.

Amazon stock was up 0.3% at US$1,910.99 by midday on Thursday.

Alphabet Inc's Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) has announced it is testing a new assistant feature that will allow users to hear a summary of uplifting news stories, Tech Crunch reported. The feature is called "Tell me something good" and the stories will focus on people who are "solving problems for our communities and our world," the report quoted Google as saying. A Google official had earlier said they should not be blamed for the bad news that would be seen in theirs and other search sites.

Google shares traded 0.11% higher at US$1,208.71.

READ: Google, Facebook trigger jump in global ad-spending forecast, per report

Rumors swirling around Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) are that the tech giant may be announcing three new iPhones in 2018, a report by CNET said. One phone would be big, another would be cheap and the third would have three rear cameras, the report said. The large version would be known as the iPhone X Plus. Apple is expected to deliver enhancements such as a bump in processing speeds, higher screen resolution and to extend battery life.

The chief executive of Apple, Tim Cook, is poised to collect US$120mln in stock that is tied to the company's performance, CNN Money reported.

Cook was given a restricted stock award when he took over Steve Jobs in 2011. On Friday, he will earn 560,000 shares of Apple although it is not clear if he will cash out the shares, the report said.

Apple shares were trading 0.5% higher at US$216.20.

Streaming service Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) unveiled four new unscripted original series and one original special at the Edinburgh TV Festival, a report by Hollywood Reporter said. The Netflix vice-president of unscripted originals and acquisitions, Brandon Riegg, said at the Festival they would launch a global culinary competition show called "The Final Table." Another series would be the stories of magicians who died performing dangerous stunts which will be called "Death by Magic."

Netflix stock reversed by midday, falling 0.7% to US$341.90 after rising 1.3% earlier in the session to US$348.90.

READ: Apple beats Amazon in race to a $1 trillion market cap

Facebook Inc's (NASDAQ:FB) Onavo security app has been removed from the App Store because it did not comply with Apple's privacy rules, a report by CNBC said. Facebook had acquired Onavo, which is based in Israel, in 2013. It lets users access a virtual private network to browse the Web and download apps with a greater degree of privacy.

Shares of Facebook gained 0.5% to US$174.51.

Thu, 23 Aug 2018 09:15:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - said to be looking to launch UK insurance price comparison website ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) is reportedly considering a foray into the UK’s financial services sector by setting up an insurance price comparison website.

The US online retail giant has been sounding out some of Europe’s top insurance firms to see if they would contribute to the website, Reuters reported, citing three industry executives who held talks with Amazon about the possible venture.  

READ: Amazon throws down the gauntlet by buying online pharmacy PillPack

One of the executives told the news outlet the talks were part of a number of discussions Amazon is holding with insurers while another said there were no imminent plans to launch a website.

Amazon’s potential entry into insurance would threaten existing UK sites such as AXA, Hastings Group Holdings PLC (LON:HSTG), eSure (LON:ASUR) and Group PLC (LON:GOCO), since it has the cash, the technology and the loyal customer base to put behind such a venture.

The company has recently disrupted the grocery and pharmaceutical sectors by entering these markets as it continues to branch out into new areas.

Amazon has declined to comment on the report. 

Thu, 16 Aug 2018 12:45:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - FAANG REPORT: looking to buy Landmark movie chain; Facebook hit over Rohingya hate content ]]> E-commerce behemoth (NASDAQ:AMZN) is said to be in the running to acquire the Landmark theater chain, a report by Bloomberg said. The company is said to be vying with other suitors to acquire the business from Wagner/Cuban Cos, which is backed by billionaire Mark Cuban and Todd Wagner, the report said. The chain’s owners have been working with investment banker Stephens Inc on a possible sale, the people said. No final decisions have been made, and talks could still fall apart. Entry of Amazon would vault the company into the brick-and-mortar cinema industry.  

Shares of Amazon in New York were up 1.02% to US$1,901.74 during Thursday's session.

READ: Amazon in prime position among Wall Street analysts after stellar 2Q earnings performance

Social media giant Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) has been slow in cracking down on hate speech in Myanmar and is hiring more Burmese speakers and investing in technology to identify controversial content, a company statement said. A report by Al Jazeera said the Facebook statement posted online on Thursday claimed it was using tools to automatically detect hate speech in Myanmar, a country in Southeast Asia that has been rocked by ethnic strife that forced hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims to flee to the border with Bangladesh the past few months. There are numerous posts that called the Rohingya and other Muslims dogs and rapists.

Shares of Facebook declined 0.8% to US$178.15. 

READ: Netflix is winning the popularity contest versus YouTube among younger viewers, says Forbes

Movie theaters are trying to use three screens in trying to fend off Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX), a report by ABC News said.  Instead of one cinema screen, there will be three. One would be at the front and two will be on the sides, the ABC report said. The cinema industry faces stiff competition from Netflix, whose revenue is forecast to be the fastest growing part of the entertainment and media industry through 2021, according to consultancy PwC. Its estimated annual growth of 6% compares with a projected annual drop in cinema attendance of 1.2%.

Netflix shares were up 0.4% to US$327.60.

READ: Google hit with record €4.3bn fine from European regulators over Android operating system

Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) is working on a new health and fitness AI assistant that it will call Google Coach, a report by BGR said. BGR said that according to Android Police, Google Coach will not just be an exercise tracker that will urge the individuals to stay active throughout the day. Using data Google collects about your health, the assistant will also recommend workouts, track your progress and give you ideas on what to do next.

Shares of Google were up 0.9% to US$1,225.61.

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) will launch two entirely new products in the coming years, according to a report by the Independent quoting an analyst. The first product is said to augmented reality glasses. Next in line would be an electric vehicle it will construct itself, the report said.

Apple shares rose 1.5% to trade at US$213.49.


Contact Rene Pastor at










Thu, 16 Aug 2018 10:00:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - to launch medical clinic for employees at its main Seattle office, says CNBC ]]> The plan by (Nasdaq:AMZN) to slash the cost of health care for its employees will be subject to a trial run at its Seattle offices, per a news flash from CNBC.

The e-retailer is reportedly in talks to launch primary care medical clinics at its headquarters there, the CNBC report said, citing two people familiar with the matter.

The first draft of the plan is for Amazon to bring in a group of doctors who will see an initial group of employees as patients this year and then widen its efforts to include more workers by next year.

Last January, Amazon revealed it had entered into a joint health care venture with JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) and Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A) in a bid to slash the cost of its employees’ health care while improving their medical care.

Read: Surgeon Atul Gawande tapped to lead health care joint venture set up by, JPMorgan and Berkshire Hathaway

Dr Atul Gawande, a surgeon and writer, has been tapped to take charge of the health care partnership.

The new company that will be set up to spearhead the undertaking will be based in Boston and will “operate as an independent entity that is free from profit-making incentives and constraints”

The efforts by Bezos, Warren Buffett and Jamie Dimon to come up with a way to slash the cost of company health care has generated considerable buzz as their new joint venture may one day offer an industry-changing model that other companies look to for guidance.

Gawande is well-known for his medical writing in the New Yorker. He also still practices as a surgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital as well as serving as a professor at Harvard Medical School. shares were trading 1.3% higher in afternoon trade at US$1,911.55.

Contact Ellen Kelleher at

Thu, 09 Aug 2018 14:02:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Inc. saw its 2017 UK corporation tax bill almost halved despite a near-trebling of profits ]]> Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)  revealed on Thursday that its UK corporation tax bill almost halved to £4.5mln last year, down from £7.4mln in 2016 despite a near-trebling of profits.

The revelation came just days after the US online retail giant posted a record profit of US$2.5bn in its latest quarterly results.

READ: Amazon crushes 2Q analyst earnings estimates but falls short on revenue

In its annual financial filing to Companies House, Amazon said last year it paid only £1.7mln in tax on its profits, having received a credit of £1.3mln from the UK authorities in 2016.

Amazon's UK operating profit in 2017 increased to £79mln,  up from around £26mln in the previous year.

Amazon Services UK - the division that runs the warehouses that process, package and post deliveries to UK customers - reported turnover as a charge to its US-based parent company, apparently for the cost of delivering products, of £1.98bn in 2017.

The BBC News website reported that one reason for the lower tax bill was a rise in share-based payments for staff.

Amazon Services UK paid out £54.8mln in share awards, compared with £36.7m in 2016, the BBC said. It employs more than two-thirds of the 27,000-strong UK workforce.

Fri, 03 Aug 2018 15:09:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon in prime position among Wall Street analysts after stellar 2Q earnings performance ]]> (NASDAQ:AMZN) is in prime position among Wall Street analysts who rushed to raise their price target after posting stellar second-quarter earnings and profitability.

The e-commerce giant reported record net income of US$2.5bn, or earnings of US$5.07 per share, on revenue of US$52.89bn compared with US$0.40 EPS on revenue of US$37.96bn at the same time a year earlier.

But it narrowly missed out on revenue estimates after reporting US$52.9bn versus the estimate of US$53.41bn.

Shares in Amazon jumped 4% in the pre-market, and added $2.6% to US$1,850.63 in the regular session.

READ: Amazon crushes 2Q analyst earnings estimates but falls short on revenue

Goldman Sachs analyst Heath P. Terry gave the shares a Buy rating and raised his firm’s price target to US$2,300 from US$2,100.

He was encouraged that Amazon’s second-quarter profit was well above consensus forecasts due to expanding margins helped by its cloud computing business, Amazon Web Services, or AWS.

“We continue to believe that we are in the sweet spot between Amazon investment cycles where new fulfillment data centers are driving accelerating growth while incremental capacity utilization and efficiency is driving margin expansion,” Terry wrote in the note.

Oppenheimer analyst Jason Helfstein, meanwhile, also put out a bullish recommendation and raised his firm's price target to US$2,130 from US$1,750 while sticking to an Outperform rating on the shares.

While Amazon's international revenue in the third quarter could face headwinds due to foreign-exchange, "the magnitude of the operating income/margin beats relative to slower revenue gives us confidence the stock can continue to work", Helfstein wrote in a note to investors. 

UBS analyst Eric J. Sheridan also signaled an optimistic tone and gave the shares a Buy rating while raising the firm’s price target to US$2,150 from US$1,830.

Sheridan wrote that while some investors could focus on slower paid unit growth and little to no upside, the negative points were "overwhelmed" by a better margin profile and cloud services. He added that it painted a picture of sustained growth in e-commerce, AWS and advertising.

Finally, Wedbush’s Michael Pachter gave the e-tailer an Outperform rating, raising its price target to US$2,100 from US$1,808.

“Amazon’s Q2 performance gives us great confidence in the company’s ability to reach our EBITDA estimate of nearly $35 billion for fiscal year 2019, up from $26.5 billion this year and $15.6 billion last year,” he wrote in the note.

--Written by Belinda Robinson for Proactive Investors

Fri, 27 Jul 2018 09:31:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Amazon crushes 2Q analyst earnings estimates but falls short on revenue ]]> Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) announced its second-quarter earnings late Thursday, surpassing analyst estimates on earnings but falling short on revenue.

The e-commerce titan reported earnings of US$5.07 per share on revenue of US$52.89bn compared with US$0.40 EPS on revenue of US$37.96bn in the previous year’s second quarter.

READ: Apple versus Which company will hit a market cap of US$1 trillion first?

The Seattle-based company beat Wall Street estimates of US$2.50 EPS but missed on revenue expectations of $53.41bn.

It was an eventful quarter for Amazon, introducing Prime membership benefits to Whole Foods store and acquiring online pharmacy PillPack.

Prime Day, the company’s one day sale, is estimated to have brought in around US$3.6bn in sales despite some technical difficulties at the beginning. Those sales will be included in the third-quarter results.

For the following quarter, the company is expecting net sales between US$54bn and US$57.5bn.

Shares of Amazon were up nearly 3% to US$1,856 in Thursday after-hours trading.

Thu, 26 Jul 2018 16:12:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - reportedly squashes rumor it's looking to sell its own network switches ]]> A senior cloud-computing executive at Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) has denied a recent report that Amazon Web Services is looking to sell its own network switches, according to MarketWatch.

The story, which emerged last week in The Information, pushed down shares of Cisco Systems Inc (NASDAQ:CSCO), a dominant player in switch sales, which has a long-time business relationship with Amazon Web Services.

An executive at Amazon Web Services dismissed the story outright that it was contemplating a move to sell its own network switches.

Read: Amazon expands Prime Day making it epic with more than a million deals

“Cisco and AWS have a long-standing customer and partner relationship, and during a recent call between Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins and Amazon Web Services CEO Andy Jassy, Andy confirmed that AWS is not actively building a commercial network switch,” a Cisco Systems spokesman said in a statement to MarketWatch.

Amazon did not reveal to MarketWatch whether it was working on building its own networking equipment. It simply said that it had no immediate intention of selling this sort of equipment to other companies.

Cisco shares rebounded after Amazon's rebuttal of the story, jumping 1.3% to US$42.21 in pre-market trade while Amazon shares were flat at US$1,831.87.

Thu, 19 Jul 2018 08:54:00 +0100