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(Bloomberg) -- Sign up to our Brexit Bulletin, follow us @Brexit and subscribe to our podcast.U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson told his Cabinet on Sunday that a Brexit deal is achievable, but European Union negotiators warned that his plans are not yet good enough to be the basis for an agreement.The British premier said that while a pathway to an agreement could be seen, there is still a significant amount of work required and the U.K. must be prepared to leave on Oct. 31, according to a spokesperson.In Brussels, EU officials were briefed that talks had not made enough progress and that the U.K. proposals were falling short of what is required for a deal. Negotiations are due to continue into Monday.Key Developments:Michel Barnier briefed envoys from EU governments on the negotiations, and warned not enough progress has been made yet.Officials from the group have said Boris Johnson indicated a possible path to detailed talks on a deal to exit the bloc as a potential compromise over the Irish border starts to emerge.U.K. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn stood firm on the need for Johnson to request an extension if negotiations falter and on his right to lead any alternative government.Deal By Summit ‘Difficult, But Not Impossible’ (5:10 p.m)The envoys were briefed that a deal by this week’s summit will be difficult, but not impossible, one official said.Even though it’s hard to predict how that summit will unfold, the leaders themselves will not negotiate on the legal text when they meet on Thursday. That means that an agreement on the wording must be reached by Wednesday and cleared by the envoys of the 27 remaining EU governments before the summit opens.Johnson’s Plan Not Good Enough Yet: EU (4:40 p.m.)EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier briefed the bloc’s government envoys in Brussels on the U.K proposals, and why they aren’t yet acceptable, mainly in the customs area, two officials familiar with the matter said. No decisions are expected today, as the European Commission does not think a breakthrough or a breakdown in talks will be likely. Negotiations will continue through Monday, the officials said.A third official present in the meeting with Barnier and the Secretary General of the Council of the EU Jeppe Tranholm-Mikkelsen said that EU27 ambassadors were briefed that reaching a deal will now be “very difficult” before this week’s EU Summit without a political push from London.A fourth official added that not enough progress has been achieved over the weekend as the EU would like to see. Speaking ahead of the briefing, a separate EU diplomat said time was running out and the hope was the British negotiators showed enough flexibility to continue and swiftly conclude the talks.Johnson Tells Cabinet That a Deal Is Possible (14:45)The prime minister updated his Cabinet on negotiations, saying that there is a way forward for a deal that “could secure all our interests, respect the Good Friday Agreement, get rid of the backstop and get Brexit done by Oct. 31,” a U.K. government spokesman said.EU Should Approve Extension If Requested, Juncker Says (13:00)As negotiators from both sides continue intensive talks for a second day, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker is turning his attention to whether Brexit should be delayed.“It’s up to the Brits to decide if they will ask for an extension,” Juncker was quoted as saying by his spokeswoman Mina Andreeva, on Twitter. “But if Boris Johnson were to ask for extra time -- which probably he won’t -- I would consider it unhistoric to refuse such a request.”Andreeva clarified that his use of the German word “unhistorisch” in the original comments, given to Austrian newspaper Kurier, means it would not do justice to history for the EU to say no.Johnson’s Plan is ‘Race to Bottom’ Says Sturgeon (10:00)Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show that she won’t vote for the type of deal Johnson is negotiating.“The proposals that are on the table from Boris Johnson and any likely amendment of them would not be acceptable to the SNP because they would take Scotland out of the EU, out of the single market, out of the customs union with all the damage that would cause,” the Scottish National Party leader said.Patel Says Government Faces Key Week for Negotiations (09:30)Home Secretary Priti Patel said in a BBC interview that negotiations have “moved on quite substantially” in recent weeks, ahead of a summit of EU leaders that begins Thursday. Speculation that Britain will avoid dropping out of the EU without a divorce accord lifted the pound last week to its biggest two-day gain in a decade.“Obviously this is the week in the run-up to the European council where there are a range of negotiations taking place even as we speak,” she said. “The government’s number one priority is to secure a deal and obviously then bring forward the legislation in parliament through votes and a legislative framework through a potential Withdrawal Agreement bill so we can get Brexit done.”She dismissed Labour’s stance, describing Corbyn’s rejection of the deal without knowing its contents as “clearly playing politics.”Rees-Mogg Says Brexit Talks ‘Take’ More Serious Turn (08:10)Leader of the House of Commons Jacob Rees-Mogg said the Cabinet will be briefed at 12:45 p.m. London time after a more positive week in negotiations. Johnson will not undermine the integrity of the U.K. in his pursuit of a deal, he told Sky News.Parliament can legislate quickly if required and “endless extensions” won’t solve matters, he said.Separately, Rees-Mogg sought to reassure hard line supporters of Brexit concerned about the content of his plans and who could prevent a Oct. 31 exit by refusing to support it. Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, he said that “as a Leaver, Boris can be trusted.”Johnson, Corbyn Unfit to Lead Country, Swinson Says (07:55)Swinson reiterated the Liberal Democrats’ desire to revoke Article 50 and said they would support amendments that bring the country closer to a second referendum on the issue. She told Sky that it was entirely possible that her party could win a majority at the next election.The Democratic Unionist Party deputy leader Nigel Dodds has also rejected any Brexit solution that would weaken Northern Ireland’s custom ties to the U.K., La Repubblica reported Saturday, citing an interview during a NATO conference in London.Corbyn to Look at Deal Before Triggering Election (07:40)Corbyn said he was unlikely to support any deal agreed by Johnson and would caution other lawmakers against doing so, but said his party would look at it before triggering a general election. If the Prime Minister fails to request an extension to talks in the absence of an agreement, Labour will take parliamentary action, he said in an interview on Sky News’ Ridge on Sunday.In the event of a government of national unity having to be formed, Corbyn said he is “of course” the figure to head it. He refused to discuss backing any other candidate, a path favored by some other parties. He also ruled out a coalition with the Scottish National Party.Powers of Speaker Could be Curbed: Telegraph (07:00)Parliamentary rules that allow so-called backbenchers to introduce their own legislation could be changed, the Sunday Telegraph reported, citing unnamed Conservative lawmakers. Speaker John Bercow has been criticized by some observers for a series of decisions this year, which allowed backbenchers to force the hand of the prime minister. They also expect Johnson to scrap laws that bar him from triggering an election, if he is able to secure a majority for it, the newspaper said.Earlier:Brexit Deal in Sight as Negotiators Wrestle With the DetailsJohnson’s Brexit More Costly Than May’s, Think Tank SaysDUP’s Dodds Says Proposed Brexit Deal Unrealistic: RepubblicaTo contact the reporters on this story: Nikos Chrysoloras in Brussels at email@example.com;Ian Wishart in Brussels at firstname.lastname@example.org;Lucy Meakin in London at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Paul Gordon at firstname.lastname@example.org, Tim Ross, James AmottFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
In the last week, we looked at Amazon Inc (AMZN) stock trends. Here is another attempt to decode the same patterns for the second week of October 2019.
The coming week’s docket of economic reports and earnings releases comes just following the Trump administration’s announcement of a partial trade deal with China late last week.
Cambridge Analytica whistleblower Christopher Wylie blasted Facebook’s continued influence after its widely publicized data scandal,
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- How worried should we be about Starbucks’s recent announcement that it plans to begin testing a new type of store that only takes orders via mobile app — no cashiers?At first glance the image seems vaguely dystopian: person after person filing through, inevitably wearing AirPods, to pick up caffeine-and-sugar infusions they ordered by pressing a few buttons on their smartphones as they were leaving home — all without a moment of human interaction.(1)But that’s more or less what’s happening right now at regular Starbucks stores: the company already accepts mobile orders, and has more than 16 million mobile users. The drawback is that those users crowd the stores and cause bottlenecks at peak times; in some outlets, the glut of mobile orders has gotten so bad that it’s discouraging walk-in customers. Thus, the mobile-only store model is presumably a response to problems already created by mobile ordering.Experiments of this kind are increasingly common. Amazon Go stores are cashier-less. Some grocery stores let you scan items as you pick them up and economize on checkout time. And mobile ordering is becoming widespread for foods ranging from salad to lobster. So we might not be too far away from the day when mobile ordering and cashier-less purchasing are the norm, rather than the exception.Will we be better off for it?In Starbucks’s case, at least, mobile-only stores might actually work out well for customers. Those who want to order via mobile will be able to go to specialized stores optimized for handling them. And that will reduce congestion at other stores, meaning that people there won’t have to spend as much time waiting for their drinks.As with many forms of product differentiation, the change might even increase demand for Starbucks coffee. Anyone who previously found Starbucks too time-consuming to stop in during their morning commutes will have a new, faster option. And people who had been driven off by the throngs of mobile-order customers might be able to come back.It’s less clear, however, how mobile-only stores will affect Starbucks employees.Some activists are trying to push for laws that would put limits on the shift to cashier-less shopping, requiring that stores must have humans on hand to ring up customer orders. That’s an onerous proposal — analogous to saying that every ATM should also have a bank teller on hand.(2)But still, you can see why there’s concern. Presumably, cashier-less stores will need fewer employees, even if they do pull in a large number of new customers. And reducing congestion in regular Starbucks stores might reduce staffing needs there as well.Then there's the drudgery factor: Working in a mobile-only store will surely be a lot more monotonous, more like being employed on a factory assembly line than in a typical coffee shop, where give-and-take between workers and customers can be part of the appeal. There will be less human interaction – and what interactions there are might well be with upset customers.It’s also likely that the workers at mobile-only stores won’t make nearly as much in tips. First off, customers might not feel an obligation to employees they don’t interact with personally. Moreover, tipping using an app isn’t observable to others, and there’s solid evidence that people take prosocial actions more frequently when others are watching. In other words, people tend to tip more when they know they're being observed.That said, the Starbucks app’s default tipping options are on the order of 10% to 20% -- higher than many people give with the typical change-in-jar approach. So if Starbucks pushes app tipping hard with notifications and alerts, there might not be too much of a shortfall. Better would be to still have a physical tip jar in mobile stores — or even to place a star on the order display board next to the name of anyone who tips.So there’s a chance that mobile-only Starbucks might be beneficial overall, rather than dystopian. Or at least not as dystopian as the pumpkin-spice latte.(1) I mean, isn’t that basically one of the opening scenes of the movie "Equilibrium"?(2) And what about completely automated coffee shops like those now operating in San Francisco?To contact the author of this story: Scott Duke Kominers at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: James Greiff at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Scott Duke Kominers is the MBA Class of 1960 Associate Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, and a faculty affiliate of the Harvard Department of Economics. Previously, he was a junior fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows and the inaugural research scholar at the Becker Friedman Institute for Research in Economics at the University of Chicago.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Terms of Trade is a daily newsletter that untangles a world embroiled in trade wars. Sign up here. Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi agreed to set up a new mechanism to discuss trade during two days of informal talks in southern India that were aimed at re-calibrating strained ties between the nations.India raised its concerns about the China-led Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, Indian foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale told reporters Saturday in the seaside town of Mamallapuram. The contentious issues of China’s Huawei 5G network and India’s decision to revoke the special autonomous status of Kashmir were not discussed, Gokhale said.The talks between the leaders of the world’s two most populous countries came amid border disputes and trade tensions. China is India’s second-largest trading partner with current two-way trade of $87 billion, and the two sides have targeted $100 billion in trade by 2020.Modi told Xi that “it is important that RCEP is balanced -- that a balance is maintained in trade in goods, trade in services and investments,” Gokhale said. Xi said China “is ready to take sincere action” on trade and “to discuss in a very concrete way how to reduce the trade deficit,” Gokhale said.Chinese vice premier Hu Chunhua and Indian finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman will lead the new mechanism which seeks to smooth concerns in the trade relationship that’s currently skewed in China’s favor. The countries agreed on a partnership to create more jobs in manufacturing and will deepen defense communication, Gokhale said.India is under increasing pressure to decide whether it will be a part of the RCEP -- which aims to create the world’s largest trading bloc -- as China seeks to conclude the negotiations by November. India’s primary concern is the pact may lead to an influx of cheap Chinese goods, which could further widen New Delhi’s nearly $55 billion trade deficit with Beijing.Both RCEP and India need each other, said Amitendu Palit, senior research fellow at the Institute of South Asian Studies at the National University of Singapore, noting New Delhi was expected to table a final series of offers and requests on market access at the last ministerial meeting on the trade deal.“These are likely to cover its concerns on opening up sensitive sectors like dairy and steel, through appropriate import safeguards and long phase-out of tariffs,” Palit said in an email Saturday. “Much of India’s concerns at RCEP have been driven by fears of Chinese imports. It is therefore not accidental that the Modi-Xi summit is taking place at a time when the RCEP is heading for a finish.”This is the second straight “informal” meeting between the leaders, after their interaction in Wuhan, China in April last year.It comes as China navigates a trade war with the U.S. and months-long protests in Hong Kong, while India is trying to revive an economy that’s seeing the slowest expansion in six years. New Delhi had also previously expressed annoyance over China’s support of neighbor and rival Pakistan regarding India’s actions in Kashmir, a region both Islamabad and New Delhi claim.(Updates with analyst comment in seventh, eighth paragraphs)To contact the reporters on this story: Bibhudatta Pradhan in Chennai at email@example.com;Archana Chaudhary in New Delhi at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ruth Pollard at email@example.com, Atul PrakashFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Ad claims CEO backs Trump – then admits it’s not true – after company admits letting politicians make false statements. Facebook has been taking heat all week for its decision to allow politicians to make false statements in paid advertisements. Now the Democratic senator and presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren is taking the fight to the social media company’s own turf by taking out a series of Facebook ads that make false statements about Facebook and its chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg. “Breaking news: Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook just endorsed Donald Trump for re-election,” the ads read, above a photograph of a recent Oval Office meeting between the billionaire tech executive and the president. The statement isn’t true, but as the Facebook executive Nick Clegg revealed late last month, the company’s policies banning false statements from paid advertisements do not apply to politicians. The exemption has drawn particular attention due to Facebook’s decision to allow Trump to run an ad that was rejected by CNN for promoting a “demonstrably false” narrative about Joe Biden. Warren’s ad does correct the record – neither Facebook nor Zuckerberg has endorsed Trump – but goes on to argue her point: that “Facebook already helped elect Donald Trump once” and that “It’s time to hold Mark Zuckerberg accountable”. Warren has advocated for antitrust action against major tech companies and has called for Facebook to be broken up into multiple smaller companies. Last week, leaked transcripts of a July meeting at Facebook revealed that Zuckerberg had promised to “go to the mat” and “fight” if Warren was elected and pursued her plan to break the company up. He also described her antitrust proposal as an “existential” threat and said it would “suck for us”. Warren appears to relish the fight with Facebook. She shot back: “What would really ‘suck’ is if we don’t fix a corrupt system that lets giant companies like Facebook engage in illegal anticompetitive practices, stomp on consumer privacy rights, and repeatedly fumble their responsibility to protect our democracy.” A Facebook spokesperson responded to the new ads to CNN, which first reported on them, saying: “If Senator Warren wants to say things she knows to be untrue, we believe Facebook should not be in the position of censoring that speech.”
(Bloomberg) -- Facebook Inc.’s effort to create a cryptocurrency was dealt a blow on Friday after several key partners, including Mastercard Inc., Visa Inc., EBay Inc., Stripe Inc. and Mercado Pago, abandoned the project. The defections followed fierce criticism from global regulators and lawmakers, and have prompted some industry-watchers to question whether the Libra program can survive.The news comes days before the Libra Association, the group that will oversee the digital currency, prepares to convene its members and ask them to sign a charter agreement. The meeting is slated to take place on Monday in Geneva. A Libra Association spokeswoman said on Friday that the gathering will proceed as planned, and that it would announce the first list of official partners once a formal charter is signed.In a statement, the spokeswoman said the group was "focused on moving forward and continuing to build a strong association" as it worked to create "a safe, transparent, and consumer-friendly implementation of a global payment system that breaks down financial barriers for billions of people."When Facebook launched plans for Libra in June, a critical part of its pitch was that major players in the payments and tech industry were supporting it. The cryptocurrency would be run out of Geneva by the organizations that comprised the Libra Association, not solely by Facebook. But now that that alliance appears to be eroding, the project’s future is uncertain."I don’t think Facebook can do this by itself," said Michael Pachter, an analyst for Wedbush Securities told Bloomberg TV. "Short of a big bank stepping in like JPMorgan, I don’t think this could ever happen."In a tweet on Friday, David Marcus, the Facebook executive spearheading the effort, said that the exit of six partners would not derail the effort. "I would caution against reading the fate of Libra into this update," he wrote. "Change of this magnitude is hard. You know you’re on to something when this much pressure builds up."Whether or not Libra implodes, the exits highlight the extreme challenges that lie ahead for the project, which if successful could have a sweeping impact on the global financial system. "It may very well fail completely," said Lisa Ellis, an analyst at MoffettNathanson. Even if it survives, progress will take much longer and "it’s likely to fall into some level of obscurity," she added.Facebook has faced fierce backlash since the company announced plans for Libra. Politicians and regulators around the world have called on Facebook to halt its progress, and some have suggested Libra could be used for illegal money laundering or trafficking schemes.Despite the scrutiny from public officials and the exodus of partners, Facebook remains committed to Libra, according to a person familiar with the matter who asked not to be identified because they were not authorized to speak publicly. Some people inside the company think the defections are partly driven by established payments providers worrying about a new entrant encroaching on their turf, the person said.In the months since its announcement, Facebook has frequently found itself in the spotlight over the cryptocurrency. Marcus went to Washington in July to testify before Congress about Facebook’s plans. Later this month, Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg is scheduled to appear before the House Financial Services Committee to answer even more questions about Libra.Earlier this week, two U.S. senators cautioned Visa, Mastercard and Stripe to reconsider their involvement in the project. Senators Sherrod Brown of Ohio and Brian Schatz of Hawaii said that Libra poses a risk to not only the financial system, but the payments companies’ broader business. "We urge you to carefully consider how your companies will manage these risks before proceeding," they said a letter to the companies.Mastercard said in a statement that it will "remain focused on our strategy and our own significant efforts to enable financial inclusion around the world," adding, "We believe there are potential benefits in such initiatives and will continue to monitor the Libra effort." Visa said the company would also continue to evaluate whether to join in Libra in the future, and that the company’s "ultimate decision will be determined by a number of factors, including the Association’s ability to fully satisfy all requisite regulatory expectations."In a statement on Friday, EBay expressed its support for the project, but said it would focus on rolling out its own payments products. “We highly respect the vision of the Libra Association; however, eBay has made the decision to not move forward as a founding member,” an EBay spokesman wrote in the emailed statement. “At this time, we are focused on rolling out eBay’s managed payments experience for our customers."Payments giant Stripe, one of the most high-profile startups to sign onto the project, signaled it remained open to working on it in the future. “Stripe is supportive of projects that aim to make online commerce more accessible for people around the world. Libra has this potential,” said a company spokesperson. “We will follow its progress closely and remain open to working with the Libra Association at a later stage.”The Libra Association is composed of about two dozen organizations, including Facebook. A Lyft Inc. spokeswoman confirmed on Friday that the ride-hailing company remains a member. Other companies that have not signaled plans to leave include Uber Technologies Inc., Spotify Technology S.A., Coinbase Inc. and telecom providers Iliad SA and Vodafone Group Plc. PayPal Holdings Inc. dropped out last week. (Updates with David Marcus comment in 6th paragraph.)\--With assistance from Candy Cheng, Lizette Chapman, Spencer Soper and Lydia Beyoud.To contact the reporters on this story: Kurt Wagner in San Francisco at firstname.lastname@example.org;Julie Verhage in New York at email@example.com;Jenny Surane in New York at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.com, Anne VanderMey, Robin AjelloFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- U.S. antitrust enforcers have started an in-depth review of Google’s $2.6 billion planned acquisition of a data analytics company, a further sign of greater scrutiny on big technology companies, according to people familiar with the situation.The antitrust division of the Justice Department is seeking more information from Google and Looker Data Sciences Inc. related to the deal to determine whether the tie-up harms competition, said one of the people, who asked not to be named discussing private matters.Alphabet Inc.’s Google announced June 6 it planned to buy Looker for its cloud unit, which lags far behind Amazon.com Inc. and Microsoft Corp. with just 4% of the cloud-computing infrastructure market as of 2018, according to the most-recent figures from analyst Gartner Inc.The deal was expected to receive added regulatory scrutiny. The in-depth Justice Department review, known as a “second request,” comes as antitrust authorities start historic probes of Google and other large tech companies. One issue for enforcers is whether tech giants have used acquisitions of smaller firms to thwart rivals and cement their dominance. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission, which also enforces antitrust laws, is investigating whether Facebook Inc.’s purchases of Instagram and WhatsApp were anti-competitive.Representatives from Google, Looker and the Justice Department declined to comment.The Justice Department and a coalition of attorneys general made up of most U.S. states in the country have opened antitrust cases against Google. Those probes are mostly focused on the company’s dominant search and advertising businesses.Looker, closely held and based in Santa Cruz, California, provides tools that lets companies analyze their data stored in the cloud, a service that competes with offerings from Amazon and Microsoft. When Google announced the deal, its cloud chief, Thomas Kurian, said the company would continue to let Looker customers use other cloud providers. Google doesn’t share cloud sales.Google once spent lavishly on companies, dropping billions on device makers Motorola and Nest, as well as experimental tech like satellites and robots. More recently, the company’s acquisitions have mostly been relatively small deals in the cloud sector.It’s common for antitrust authorities to open in-depth investigations for sizable mergers, but more recently have faced criticism for allowing large tech companies to buy startups as a way to gain footholds in new markets. That charge has been aimed at Google after its takeovers of Waze, DoubleClick and YouTube. The Justice Department in July announced a broad antitrust review of the big internet platforms in search, social media and online retail.To contact the reporters on this story: Mark Bergen in San Francisco at firstname.lastname@example.org;Sarah McBride in San Francisco at email@example.com;David McLaughlin in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.com, ;Sara Forden at firstname.lastname@example.org, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Let's take a look at what investors need to know about Facebook and some of its Q3 estimates to help us determine if FB stock might be worth buying before the social media company reports its Q3 2019 earnings results...
The two companies announced they would leave the association Friday afternoon, as did EBay Inc , Stripe Inc. and Latin American payments company Mercado Pago. The latest exodus leaves the Libra Association without any remaining major payments companies as members, meaning it can no longer count on a global player to help consumers turn their currency into Libra and facilitate transactions.
Shares of tech giant Amazon (AMZN) are trading 1.3% higher today. Does the surge hint at a turnaround in sentiment and Amazon investor relations?
Shares of Netflix (NFLX) have fallen over 20% in the past three months. Let's dive into everything we know about Netflix heading into its Q3 earnings release to see what to expect from NFLX stock...
Oct.11 -- Michael Pachter, Wedbush analyst, explains why he doesn't think Facebook Inc. will be able to launch its Libra cryptocurrency. He speaks with Bloomberg's Taylor Riggs on "Bloomberg Technology."