Catch up with this week’s Five on Friday!

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#FromFacebook

Facebook revealed this week that it will attach its name to a pair of its top-performing subsidiary apps, Instagram and WhatsApp.

What does this mean?

Say goodbye to Instagram and WhatsApp, and utter a tepid greeting to “Instagram from Facebook” and “WhatsApp from Facebook.” According to a spokesperson, the social media giant’s rationale for rebranding two of its most successful apps is “to be clearer about the products and services that are part of Facebook.” However, some commentators have suggested other reasons. Currently, Facebook is under investigation by the Federal Trade Commission on monopoly grounds (and was recently hit with a $5 billion dollar fine from the regulatory body). The FTC is attempting to establish whether or not Facebook acquired its popular rivals in a bid to destroy threats to its dominance. …


Catch up with this week’s Five on Friday!

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#Disney

Disney became the star of the show this week after its reboot of ‘The Lion King’ became the company’s fourth film of the year to hit the $1 billion mark, causing it to break all-time box-office records for a single year.

What does this mean?

‘The Lion King’, which drew attention upon release for its scene-by-scene fidelity to the original plot as well as its photorealistic CGI, passed the coveted billion-dollar milestone on Tuesday after only nineteen days in theatres. It now takes its place in Disney’s 2019 billionaire’s club, alongside ‘Captain Marvel’, ‘Aladdin’, and ‘Avengers: Endgame.’ ‘Toy Story 4’ is expected to join these ranks soon, having already grossed almost $920 million in its first five weeks. Having made nearly $7.7 billion at the international box office so far in 2019, Disney has surpassed its own records for a single year. …


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Catch up with this week’s Five on Friday!

#OhSnap

Beleaguered social network Snap Inc. surprised investors this week by posting a narrower-than-expected loss and revealing impressive user growth.

What does this mean?

Among social media companies, Snap has become the byword for poor management and thwarted promise. After going public in March 2017, in what was supposed to be “the biggest tech IPO since Facebook”, the company behind the hugely popular Snapchat app has seen its shares tumble relentlessly since its original $30 billion valuation. For some, Snap had become a lost cause, racked as it was by negative publicity and executive departures. However, the company’s earnings success this week complicated the picture. Snap soared past estimates on all important metrics, with its user base now standing at a very healthy 203 million daily active users. …


Catch up with this week’s Five on Friday!

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#PrimeDay

Amazon had another wildly successful Prime Day this week, with overall sales easily surpassing last year’s totals.

What does this mean?

The two-day event saw customers purchase more than 175 million items through Amazon, meaning that total sales outperformed the company’s previous Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined. It was also the biggest event ever for the sale of Amazon devices, with products like the Echo Dot, the Fire TV Stick with the Alexa Voice Remote coming out as particularly strong sellers. While Prime Day continues to grow in size and reach, the outlook isn’t all roses for the e-commerce giant, as the European Union also formally opened an investigation into the company this week. …


Catch up with this week’s Five on Friday!

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#Nike

After the stunning 2–0 victory of the US women’s national soccer team over the Netherlands on Sunday, an extra round of celebrations are in order for Nike this week.

What does this mean?

The sportswear giant, which sponsored 14 of the 24 teams in this year’s contest, reported that U.S. women’s soccer jerseys have already sold out on its website thanks to the exposure generated by the final. With 14 million viewers in the U.S. alone, the game was one of the highest-rated telecasts in the history of women’s soccer. According to Nike CEO Mark Parker, the USA women’s home jersey has become the best-selling soccer jersey, for both men and women, ever sold through the company’s online store in a single season. “The exposure is driving outstanding sell-through in kits, high-performance bras, and lifestyle extensions,” Parker said. …


Catch up with this week’s Five on Friday!

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#TradeWar

U.S. President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping of China agreed to resume trade talks last Saturday at the G-20 summit in Osaka, Japan.

What does this mean?

Meeting privately during the summit, Trump and Xi said they would return to the negotiation table after a seven-week breakdown in trade talks that had threatened to exacerbate the ongoing trade war between the world’s two largest economies. After the meeting, both leaders said that they did not intend to levy any new tariffs against each other’s products for the foreseeable future. While the markets responded positively to the news, many commentators were quick to point out that similar proposals had been made in the past with little actual progress, notably at last year’s summit in Buenos Aires. Additionally, it was revealed on Wednesday that the U.S. trade deficit with China has actually jumped in recent months, representing something of a blow to the Trump administration, which is fighting for exactly the opposite outcome. …


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Catch up with this week’s (new and improved) Five on Friday!

Note: This article was amended on July 2, 2019 to clarify that Steve Jobs unveiled the MacBook Air in 2008, not the MacBook Pro.

#IveOnFriday

Apple revealed yesterday that its chief design officer, the legendary Jony Ive, is leaving the company after more than 20 years.

What does this mean?

Considered a central figure in the company, Ive was responsible throughout his two-decade tenure for almost every design element of Apple’s major products, from the Mac to the iPhone. If the tech giant has become largely synonymous with portability, elegance, and beauty, a lot of the credit goes to Ive, who pioneered the likes of the iPhone’s white headphones (and surreptitiously launching a fashion trend) as well as the MacBook Air’s famously lithe frame. His contribution to the company was best captured this week by technology website The Verge, which announced that “the era of the singular genius at Apple is over.” While Apple previously prided itself on the extraordinary level of talent at its executive level, with Steve Jobs as the epitome, CEO Tim Cook seems to be moving towards a more team-led and anonymous approach to product-building. …


All over the world, people are securing their financial future through the MyWallSt app. Here’s some stories of people who decided to Own It.

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With its top investing advice, noise-filtering news, and curated selection of the most exciting stocks on the market, MyWallSt has helped beginner investors around the world to own their financial future.

Our stock knowledge is backed by the expertise that produced a portfolio with an annual return in excess of 24.4% per annum for 11 years, and 44% for the last five years.

But don’t take it from us. Here’s what our members have had to say.


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Catch up with this week’s Five on Friday!

#FacebookCrypto

Facebook finally revealed key details of its highly-anticipated cryptocurrency platform this week.

What does this mean?

The platform, codenamed Libra, will allow users to make purchases on Facebook’s apps as well as third-party sites for almost non-existent fees. With more than two billion monthly active users, Facebook’s online community is so large that Libra, at least in principle, could become the world’s most widely-used currency. Apparently all-too-aware of its poor reputation for privacy violations, however, Facebook has launched a crypto subsidiary called Calibra, which will collect and use data independently of its core business. As a result, there should be no fear that a user’s spending history is being exploited by the social network for targeted advertising. In order to build further trust, Facebook has also established the Libra Association, a collective of 28 companies that include payment rivals such as Visa, Mastercard, and PayPal. Supposedly, this will allow other voices to veto any objectionable decisions made by the Facebook team. Libra is arguably the most ambitious project in Facebook’s 15-year history, but whether the crypto revolution it promises will actually take off, or indeed pay off, remains to be seen. …


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When it comes to investing, you should strive for “the passion of the scientist and the precision of the artist.”

“Investing is more art than science,” American investor Howard S. Marks is supposed to have said. It’s an intriguing statement, but what exactly does it mean?

Typically, we associate the concept of art with creativity, imagination, playfulness, and intuition, among other things. On the contrary, the word science immediately evokes beakers and lab coats and cold rationality.

Beginner investors tend to believe that investing very much belongs in the latter category. After all, there are plenty of numbers, theories, and models involved. And investment banks and hedge funds aren’t exactly populated by poets, are they?

But what if the two concepts are not quite so far apart as they first appear? After all, there is a great deal of hard-won technique involved in art. Likewise, many great scientists have spoken of the importance of applying imaginative solutions to their research. Indeed, the writer Vladimir Nabokov once wittily advised his students to keep in mind “the passion of the scientist and the precision of the artist.” …

About

Jamie O’Donoghue

Content Specialist at MyWallSt

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