How do you make poverty sound better? Rebrand it! | Arwa Mahdawi

Having to take several jobs and sending kids to work used to be a sign of living precariously – now it’s just a question of what your ‘side hustle’ is

Listen carefully. I am about to divulge the secret of financial success. I have deduced a failsafe way to amass a lot of money, even if you earn very little. It doesn’t involve cutting down on avocado toast, crocheting your own clothes or working eight jobs; it’s effort-free. Ready to have your mind blown? Well, if you want to buy a house at 22, retire at 32 or just not be poor at any age, make sure you have rich parents. Failing that, secure a generous inheritance from a grandparent. Like I said, super easy. I don’t know why more people don’t try it!

Please don’t think I am being glib. I point this out because it needs to be pointed out. There seems to be some sort of millennial morality tale published every day – a smug treatise with a headline such as: “I saved $100,000 on a salary of just $30,000 a year”; “Extreme frugality allowed me to retire at 32”; or “How we saved £30,000 in three years while paying a mortgage”. A few paragraphs into the article, the financial whizz sagely dispensing advice about hard work and thriftiness typically mentions an inheritance or notes that their parents let them live at home rent-free for years. This detail is glossed over, so said financial whizz can explain how, rather than benefiting from intergenerational wealth, it was switching to a cheaper brand of makeup that made all the difference to their bank account.

Related: ‘Sometimes you don’t feel human’ – how the gig economy chews up and spits out millennials

Continue reading…

Facebook Privacy Issues Are Years Old

Via On the Media: In the week since the New York Times and the Observer of London reported that the shadowy data firm Cambridge Analytica had acquired vast troves of Facebook user data before the 2016 election, privacy activists have demanded that federal regulators take a meaningful look at Facebook. The thing is, in 2011 the Federal Trade Commission did. At the time, users and…

Read More

The post Facebook Privacy Issues Are Years Old appeared first on The Big Picture.

Markets volatile amid trade war fears, as Spotify floats – as it happened

All the day’s economic and financial news, as European markets fall following last night’s Wall Street rout

And finally, Spotify has closed at $149 per share.

That’s a drop from its opening level of $165.9, but still 13% above the ‘reference price’ of $132.

Related: Spotify goes public with a bang after flag snafu to mark first day of trading

A recovery rally on Wall Street has helped the US stock market recover a chunk of Monday’s falls.

The Dow Jones industrial average has closed 1.65% higher, up 389 points at 24,033 – having lost over 450 points yesterday.


Despite Trump’s tweets, White House isn’t talking about Amazon action, sources say via @bpolitics

Spotify may have bucked the trend with its direct listing, but its ownership structure is depressingly familiar, says our financial editor Nils Pratley.

Its founders are wedded to keeping vice-like control via a share structure with unequal voting rights. For unequal, read unfair: Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzen own 38.9% of the ordinary shares but they have created “beneficiary certificates” with super-charged voting rights that only they can own. Include those holdings and Ek and Lorentzen have 80.4% of the votes.

As the prospectus is obliged to concede: “If our founders act together, they will have control over the outcome of substantially all matters submitted to our shareholders for approval, including the election of directors.” Put another way, for as long as the duo stick together, they are unsackable.

Related: Spotify’s direct listing breaks the mould – unlike its governance

Laith Khalaf, senior analyst at stockbroker Hargreaves Lansdown, says Spotify has a ‘great story’; even so, people should be cautious when investing.

He explains:

‘Spotify is floating on the stock market at a pretty inauspicious time for the tech industry, which has been rocked by the Facebook data scandal and now potentially faces greater regulation as a result. Donald Trump’s tweeted attacks on Amazon don’t help lift sentiment towards the sector either.

Despite the downbeat mood music, Spotify shares changed hands on the market at a substantial premium to the highest price previously paid in private transactions, indicating significant investor demand for the stock. It’s still early in the US trading session however.

The BBC’s Danni Hewson is impressed by the streaming service’s opening debut:

Wowzers #spotify debuts on the @NYSE with a share price of $165.90 – the music streaming service is worth $29.5 billion – more than Twitter!

Spotify’s opening price of $165.90 gives it a valuation of $30b. I’d say that’s pretty punchy. Universal Music parent Vivendi is valued at EU27b, probably with a conglomerate discount though.

Here’s some video of the moment Spotify’s shares joined the market:

Spotify’s stock officially went public today, opening at a price of $165.90.

Spotify’s shares are bouncing around in early trading, as investors weigh up whether to buy in at today’s opening price.

They’ve just slipped below $164, from the opening price of $165.9. Early days, though….

Spotify’s stock kicks off unorthodox ‘direct listing’ at $165.90, then falls 3% in choppy trade

The Wall Street Journal says Spotify has hit the markets with a bang:

Spotify Technology roared onto the public market Tuesday as the music-streaming giant pulled off an unusual method of going public.

The stock opened at $165.90 and traded in a close range immediately after. With an opening value of $29.55 billion, Spotify is poised to become the third-largest U.S.-listed tech IPO on record, according to Dealogic.

AT LAST! Spotify is finally trading, after more than three hours of intense discussions on the Wall Street trading floor.

Shares have opened for trading at $165.90, sharply higher than the $132 which had been suggested.

Spotify is open!

Spotify market cap = $30 billion

That means #spotify just popped 30% vs the $127.50 top range it traded at in private transactions in Feb 2018

On a lighter note, the New York Stock Exchange has confirmed that it accidentally flew a Swiss flag to mark Spotify’s listing — which is unfortunate as it’s actually a Swedish company.

Spotify IPO: Swiss flag snafu marks first day of trading

Spotify’s likely market valuation is pushing closer to $30bn, as its unconventional ‘direct listing’ continues to play out on the trading floor

Market makers on Wall Street are continuing to haggle over Spotify’s valuation, pushing its likely share price value even higher:

Not a single #Spotify share has changed hands yet – and already the “price” has gone up almost $30.

After a edgy day, European stock markets have closed mostly in the red.

The escalation of tensions between China and the US over tariffs hit sentiment in the City, and beyond, as traders returned to their desks after the Easter break.

It was a rough start to the second quarter for European equities. Still, next to the losses seen on Wall Street on Monday, the damage in Europe was contained.

Europe is out of the firing line for Trump’s tariffs for now and has a lower weighting in technology companies compared to the US. Both factors make Europe a relative haven from the current negative news flow.

Higher still and higher….

.@spotify shares set to price at $165/share well above the expected $132/share from yesterday – suggests strong investor demand @BBCBusiness

Spotify’s shares are now seen opening at $150-$160 – indicating that its stock market listing is going well.

#Spotify shares indicated at $150-160…so about +26% pop on where shares trading at top end in private transactions earlier in 2018 #TicTocNews

Wall Street is pushing higher in volatile trading.

Those early prices suggest that Spotify could be worth around $27bn, I think.

Not too shabby, given the company hasn’t made a profit out of its 157 million customers.

Ooooh – Spotify is being priced at between $145 and $155 per share.

That’s more than the $132 which had been pencilled in.

Getting first indications for Spotify $145 – $155

Donald Trump is refusing to back down in his fight against Amazon, and just fired off a new tweet:

I am right about Amazon costing the United States Post Office massive amounts of money for being their Delivery Boy. Amazon should pay these costs (plus) and not have them bourne by the American Taxpayer. Many billions of dollars. P.O. leaders don’t have a clue (or do they?)!

Amazon falls to session low in early trading after President Trump tweets about the company again, saying it should pay “massive amounts” of money that he says the retailer is costing the US Postal Service

traders on NYSE floor estimate it’ll be at least 2 hours before spotify actually starts trading. BUCKLE IN!

Spotify’s stock market listing is underway…but we don’t know what price its shares are trading at yet.

Wall Street has opened a little higher, as traders hope to recovery from Monday’s selloff.

The Dow has gained 0.5% in early trading, up 123 points at 23,767

Dow rebounds at the open as tech shares cut steep losses from yesterday

Here’s some early reaction to Tesla’s new production numbers:

Tesla up 7% by doing the classic post-Easter, pre-market Resurrection Gambit – releasing hot production data just before the bell to burn the shorts.
Maybe this IS a good day for Spotify to start trading.

“Tesla said in a statement that it still sees a target production rate of about 5,000 units per week in about three months, in line with the company’s previous target, Bloomberg News reports. “ $TSLA

Bloomberg’s Tesla Model 3 production tracker estimating down on weekly production and just missing Q1 target. Be interesting to see how close they are with their data modeling on the true numbers!

Just in: Electric carmaker Tesla has just released its latest eagerly-awaited production figures, which confirm rumours that it has missed some of its own targets.

In the past seven days, Tesla produced 2,020 Model 3 vehicles. In the next seven days, we expect to produce 2,000 Model S and X vehicles and 2,000 Model 3 vehicles.

It is a testament to the ability of the Tesla production team that Model 3 volume now exceeds Model S and Model X combined. What took our team five years for S/X, took only nine months for Model 3.

Spotify logos have sprung up at Wall Street, ahead of today’s listing:

New York’s stock market may claw back some of yesterday’s losses when trading resumes in under an hour’s time.

The second quarter got off to a rough start on Monday, with trade war fears and declining tech stocks taking their toll on investor sentiment, but we are seeing a small rebound ahead of the open on Wall Street.

US futures are up to half a percentage point higher on Tuesday, but this pales in comparison to the losses recorded on Monday and reflects ongoing weakness in stocks. Donald Trump’s attacks on Amazon over the weekend put the spotlight back on the tech sector, as it tries to recover from the Facebook data scandal that threatens more regulation. Pressure on the sector doesn’t appear to be going away in the near-term which will continue to act as a drag on indices.

Traders might need their tin hats this spring…

The correction has only just started says David Marsh @OMFIF @SquawkBoxEurope We go down another 10% in the next six weeks because of valuation and US interest rate fears.

In less than 90 minutes, music streaming site Spotify will join the US stock exchange.

You can get up to speed quickly with our explainer, which outlines why the popular service (which has never turned a profit) could be worth up to $25bn – and why today’s listing could be particularly lively….

Related: Spotify’s stock market debut – all you need to know

Joe Weisenthal of Bloomberg is questioning whether Donald Trump has really hurt Amazon’s share price (as suggested earlier).

He points out that other tech companies have suffered similar falls, even though they’ve been spared a digital roasting from the president:

I’m not convinced that Trump’s tweets are hurting Amazon shares. Wrote about it in today’s @markets newsletter.

Bad news: another 97 workers at the collapsed UK construction and outsourcing group Carillion have lost their jobs.

That take the total redundancies at the company to 1,802, since it was liquidated in January in one of the biggest UK corporate failures in years. Some 9,946 jobs have been saved (because other companies have taken on the contracts they work on).

Sky is bucking today’s selloff, after a cunning scheme to help Rupert Murdoch take full control of the broadcaster emerged.

We think the news and today’s comments from Sky point to a revised bid from Fox/Disney to trump Comcast’s 1250p bid.

Related: Disney offers to buy Sky News to ease Murdoch’s £11.7bn takeover

Two and a half-hours into the new trading quarter, and Britain’s stock market is still down.

On tech’s impact on the market, it’s a case of the star performers suffering and this has a big psychological effect on sentiment. It’s not just that they have been behind the bulk of the gains in recent years and therefore exert an outsized effect on indices when they sell off; there is also a kind of network effect on other stocks.

On trade, there is hope that China’s response to US sanctions is sufficiently moderate and contained to prevent further escalation. However we await to see where this goes and whatever happens from here, there is no ‘good news’ in the sense that the direction of travel is either one-way or going no further – we are not about to see a freeing up of global trade (reversal of tariffs), which would be risk-positive. Even if there is no further escalation, the background music is risk-off.

It’s hardly unusual for Donald Trump to lash out on Twitter — as Hillary Clinton, CNN, the FBI, several senators and the Mexican government can all testify.

But still, his trenchant criticism of Amazon in recent days has caused a real stir in the markets for several reasons, helping to fuel this week’s market selloff.

Amazon isn’t causing the United States Postal Service to lose a fortune. In fact, it’s contributing to its biggest growth sector, package delivery. Deals like the one with Amazon brought in $7 billion in fiscal year 2017.

I have stated my concerns with Amazon long before the Election. Unlike others, they pay little or no taxes to state & local governments, use our Postal System as their Delivery Boy (causing tremendous loss to the U.S.), and are putting many thousands of retailers out of business!

He’s off the hook on this. It’s war,” one source told me.

“He gets obsessed with something, and now he’s obsessed with Bezos,” said another source. “Trump is like, how can I fuck with him?”

NEW: Vanity Fair: Now, according to four sources close to the White House, Trump is discussing ways to escalate his Twitter attacks on Amazon to further damage the company. @gabrielsherman

@PDonovan_econ on why Trump’s Amazon tweets matter to markets (and yes, we are squarely at the ‘discussing the rule of law’ stage of the presidency, which is of course fine)

Just in: Britain’s manufacturing has just posted its slowest quarter growth in a year.

But it’s not all bad — growth in March picked up a little, pushing the manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index up to 55.1 from 55.0 in February.

The average reading over the opening quarter as a whole (55.1) was the weakest in a year, suggesting that the underlying pace of expansion has been generally slower since the start of 2018.

Growth across Europe’s factory sector has hit an eight-month low, as the recent ‘euro boom’ falters.

The eurozone manufacturing PMI, which tracks activity across the sector, dropped to 56.6 in March, down from 58.6 in February. This is the third monthly drop in a row, but it still signals solid growth (50 points would show stagnation).

The fact that business optimism about the coming year has slipped to a 15-month low suggests there are other factors that are now hitting factory order books. Export growth has more than halved since late last year, linked in part to the appreciation of the euro, and in some cases demand is being stymied by higher prices.

Hopes that the markets might calm down after their volatile start to 2018 have been dashed this morning.

Rebecca O’Keeffe, head of investment at interactive investor, says investors need to decide whether we’re heading into a bear market, or just a ‘revaluation’ of asset prices.

The major fear for markets is that the imposition of retaliatory import tariffs by China could just be the tip of the iceberg and will cause a chain reaction that drags more sectors and countries into the dispute. In a world where China is not willing to turn the other cheek and where President Trump likes to get the last word, the situation is set for further turmoil and the danger for investors is that this will escalate into a broader battle, which could leave few sectors immune to trouble.

Each of the major tech companies appears to have its own particular set of problems to deal with. Facebook – data security. Intel – Apple chips. Tesla – missed targets compounding fears of excessive leverage. Amazon – President Trump. However, the one thing these companies do have in common is that these stocks are held by most of the big popular global funds. This means that many investors may have substantial exposure, even if they are not direct shareholders, which makes the tech troubles a wider problem.

Monday’s selloff was actually Wall Street’s worst start to an April since 1929 — a date etched in market memory thanks to the crash later that year.

Now, it’s just one day’s trading, but its not a great open for the second quarter either…

Just checking I’ve got this straight, U.S. stocks have made their worst start to a second quarter since the Great Depression in 1929 because:

1) Someone started a trade war with China.

2) Someone has launched attacks on one of the world’s biggest technology stocks.

That right?

Yesterday’s selloff means America’s S&P 500 has now shed 3.4% since the start of the year, while the Dow is down almost 5%.

That follows a remarkable 2017, which saw the US stock market surge by around 25%.

Trump Rally Bites the Dust: Pool of Greater Fools Dries Up
This is not about trade, not about regulations, not about Intel which plummeted by more than 7% after a report that Apple plans to stop using Intel chips. This is about absurd valuations.

Related: Business Today: sign up for a morning shot of financial news

European markets have fallen down across the board in nervous trading, as traders rush to catch up with events after the Easter break.

On Monday China announced that it has implemented afforementioned tariffs on 128 types of US goods. Implementing the tariffs makes China’s response to Trump’s steel and aluminium tariffs official. China has to show it is serious. We still expect a settlement in trade negotiations between the two nations. Sentiment will be fragile until the result of trade negotiations become clear.

Britain’s stock market has fallen sharply at the start of trading.

The FTSE 100 shed 54 points, or 0,7%, to 7001 points, as traders take their cue from yesterday’s slide on Wall Street.

The fall in tech stocks and escalating trade tensions continued to rattle markets after the Easter break.

This time, it’s Trump’s tariffs and tech stocks driving the selloff, and I don’t think the U.S. President is doing himself any favors before the midterm elections. Beijing’s response hasn’t been aggressive, by imposing levies on $3 billion worth of imports from the U.S.; the question now is – what’s next?

Good morning, and welcome to our rolling coverage of the world economy, the financial markets, the eurozone and business.

Beijing decided to impose levies on approximately $3 billion worth of goods from the US. In the grand scheme of things, China’s response hasn’t been too aggressive, but dealers fear we could be starting a long trade war.

The ball is now in Trump’s in court, and traders are waiting for the US President to make the next move.

Related: US stock market slides as China retaliates to Trump tariffs

After a long Easter weekend, European indices are open again.

Current prices:#FTSE 7006 -0.72%#DAX 11996 -0.83%#CAC 5139 -0.55%#MIB 22212 -0.89%#IBEX 9517 -0.87%

While we are on the subject, it is reported that the U.S. Post Office will lose $1.50 on average for each package it delivers for Amazon. That amounts to Billions of Dollars. The Failing N.Y. Times reports that “the size of the company’s lobbying staff has ballooned,” and that…

…does not include the Fake Washington Post, which is used as a “lobbyist” and should so REGISTER. If the P.O. “increased its parcel rates, Amazon’s shipping costs would rise by $2.6 Billion.” This Post Office scam must stop. Amazon must pay real costs (and taxes) now!

Related: Spotify poised to be a $25bn company on eve of IPO

Continue reading…

Zendesk hits $500M run rate, launches enterprise content management platform

Over the last several years, Zendesk has been making the transition from a company that caters mostly to small businesses to one with larger enterprise customers — and their revenue reflects that. The company announced it has crossed the $.5 billion annual run rate since its last earning report in February. It also announced a new enterprise content management product specifically geared for large customer service organizations.

The company was just shy of the goal after its most recent earnings report (pdf) with $123.4 million for the quarter. They say they have since passed that goal, but have not announced it until now, based on revenue that closed March 31, 2018. The company is projecting between $555 and $565 million in revenue for fiscal 2018, according to its last earnings report. When you consider that when the company went public in 2014, it was at $100 million in annual revenue, reaching a half billion dollars in 4 years is significant.

Zendesk reports that 40 percent of its revenue now comes from larger enterprise customers, which they define as 100 seats or more. The company is predicting it will cross the $1 billion run rate by some time in 2020.

“When we IPOed, our run rate was $100 million. We had great momentum, but we were seen as SMB scaling to mid market. To reach a half a billion dollars shows momentum for building up enterprise market and enterprise products,” Adrian McDermott, Zendesk’s president of products told TechCrunch.

As for the new product, it’s called Guide Enterprise and it’s designed to provide those larger customer service organizations with a knowledge base and a content management platform for editorial planning and review. The idea is to empower customer service reps to write up solutions to problems they encounter and build up that knowledge base as part of the natural act of doing their jobs.

Zendesk Guide Enterprise. Photo: Zendesk

That gives organizations a couple of advantages. First of all, the reps can find their fellow employees’ notes and not have to reinvent the wheel every time, and the notes and articles they write can pass through editorial review and become part of the permanent knowledge base.

When customers hit the site or app, they can access solutions to common problems before having to talk to a human. The platform also includes reminders to check the content regularly so the knowledge base stays fresh and stale content is removed.

Finally, the company is applying AI to the problem. The artificial intelligence component can review the corpus of information currently available in the entire knowledge base and identify gaps in content that the company might want to add, allowing for proactive content creation.

The content management idea isn’t new to Zendesk. McDermott says they shipped the first content management product years ago, but what’s different is that this is geared to larger organizations and that the AI piece allows for some automation of this process. “The new workflow brings rich AI concepts like content analytics into the publishing flow,” he said.

Workers at risk as robots set to replace 66m jobs, warns OECD

One in seven vulnerable employees in developed world least likely to be receiving help

The west’s leading economic thinktank has warned its members that they are failing to prepare workers for an automation revolution that will leave 66 million people at risk of being replaced by machines in the coming years.

A new report by the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development found that the most vulnerable – one in seven workers on average across the 32 countries studied – were less likely to be receiving help than those whose jobs were more secure.

Related: The Guardian view on automation: put human needs first | Editorial

Related: We fear robots at work, but robotic jobs for humans are awful too | Gaby Hinsliff

Continue reading…