Thursday, August 2, 2018
What to watch today
On Thursday, 48 members of the S&P 500 will report earnings, with results from CBS (CBS) probably the most anticipated among investors. CBS CEO Les Moonves remains under intense scrutiny after The New Yorker reported last week that Moonves sexually harassed six employees in incidents dating back to the 1980s.
On Monday, CBS’s board of directors met to discuss the allegations against Moonves, and on Tuesday, Fox Business’s Charlie Gasparino reported that Moonves will be on the company’s earnings call and ready to answer questions. CBS hired the law firms of Debevoise & Plimpto and Covington & Burling to investigate the misconduct claims. Mary Jo White, a former chair of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, and former federal prosecutor Nancy Kestenbaum, will lead their respective firms in the probe.
China is ready to retaliate on latest US tariff threat: “China has made full preparation for the U.S. threats to escalate the trade war, and will have to retaliate to defend national pride and the people’s interests,” China’s Ministry of Commerce said in a statement Thursday on its website. The Trump administration said this week that it’s considering increasing the proposed tariff on $200 billion in Chinese imports to 25% from 10%. [Bloomberg]
Tesla burns $739.5M in cash on way to record 2Q loss: Electric car maker Tesla Inc. (TSLA) burned through $739.5 million in cash last quarter, paving the way to a company record $717.5 million net loss as it cranked out more electric cars. But CEO Elon Musk pledged to post net profits in future quarters, and on a conference call, he apologized to two analysts he cut off on the company’s first-quarter call. Telsa’s shares jumped 9.3% to $328.85 in after-hours trading. [AP]
Apple’s new trillion-dollar number for stock price Is $207.05: Holding your breath for Apple Inc. (AAPL) to break $1 trillion? There’s a new magic number to fixate on. And it’s less than 3% away. Apple closed at $201.50 Wednesday, a record, after an earnings-inspired jump. [Bloomberg]
Starbucks partners with Alibaba to deliver coffee in China: Starbucks (SBUX) is making a major push to reach millions of Chinese consumers whether at home or work by partnering with e-commerce giant Alibaba (BABA). Beginning next month, Starbucks will debut delivery services in 150 stores in Beijing and Shanghai using Alibaba’s on-demand food delivery platform Ele.me, the two companies announced. [Yahoo Finance]
Fidelity offer of no-fee index funds hurts shares of rivals: Fidelity Investments outlined plans on Wednesday to launch no-fee index funds, hurting the shares of rivals including BlackRock Inc. (BLK) as investors worried about lower profits. The move marked the latest round of price cutting in the asset management industry, which has benefited from rising markets and steady inflows of investor cash to passively managed products. [Reuters]
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