Does The Weed-Killer Roundup Cause Cancer? Plus Yelp’s Stock Gets A Shot In The Arm

by 4 months ago

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“Hello and welcome to this year’s Las Vegas International Dodgeball Open brought to you exclusively on ESPN8 ‘the ocho.’ If it’s almost a sport, we’ve got it here.” -Cotton McKnight. ESPN is bringing back Dodgeball’s very own ESPN8 “the ocho” on August 8th. Bold move, Cotton.

Market Snapshot

  • The Dow posted its 7th consecutive record close.
  • The S&P and Nasdaq fell, weighed by large cap tech stocks.
  • Oil prices dropped on concerns of oversupply from OPEC.
  • The pound slipped as the Bank of England cut growth forecasts.

Forever On Trial

Monsanto. Just saying, the name sends a chill up your spine.

The company known for its genetically-engineered seeds and weed-killing spray, Roundup, has its back against a wall yet again. It begins with a two-year court case that suggests the main chemical in Roundup, glyphosate, potentially causes cancer.

“So then why would people use it?”

Well, because they didn’t know. Recent documents presented in the case suggest Monsanto may have hired scientists to back up safety and health claims linked to its products. In fact, even officials from the EPA and the European Chemicals Agency have given Monsanto products the thumbs up. Which is scary.

Big corporations cozying up to regulators shouldn’t come as a shock, but doing so to falsify safety and health claims should.

That said, Monsanto isn’t throwing its hands in the air quite yet.

Activists vs CEOs

Investors are winning.

Avon—your mom’s favorite beauty company—is the latest to join the list of companies that have had their CEOs pushed out by activist investors. Who’s made the list this year? Buffalo Wild Wings, AIG and GE to name a few.

Think of activists as the Carl Icahns of the world, who take a hands-on approach to managing the companies they invest in. And after three straight quarters of Avon posting a loss (-$45.5 million in Q2) despite a restructuring plan in 2015—the head honchos at Barington Capital Group and NuOrion Partners felt it was time for a change.

Cue CEO Sherilyn McCoy stepping down. Only question, who’s up next?

Christmas in August

Two shipping companies. Two different strategies. 100+ million deliveries.

Fedex (-0.05%) just announced it’s cutting additional shipping fees on standard packages during the holiday season. If that feels like a cheap shot to the competition, it just might be. Back in June, the company’s big, brown foe, UPS (+0.23%), said it would charge extra for the same service.

Why would it do that?

Likely, because even an additional 27-97¢ can add up to tens of millions in revenue.

For FedEx, it’s customer-first all the way. It won’t be missing out on all the fun, though. For oversized or irregularly shaped packages—what’s in the box Cheryl??**—FedEx will still charge a fee.

Fun fact, that’s 10% of the time.

The Reviews Are In

Sometimes all it takes is a bit of good news to bring the buyers back. And, it’s about damn time Yelp and GoPro got some good news.

Yelp:

After watching its stock fall 17% this year, Yelp beat earnings (actually turning a profit), said it will buy back $200 million worth of shares and will sell Eat24 to GrubHub for $287 million.

Investors left a good review and drove the stock up 20% after-hours.

GoPro:

If you thought being down 17% was bad, it’s time to be humbled.

In 2014, GoPro hovered around $87 a share. Now? It’s closer $8. So, what did it take to help it rally 13% after-hours? Losing 9¢ per share instead of 25¢.

The results may reflect a 34% year-over-year growth in revenue to $296 million, but still, just think: people used to obsess over GoPro’s wide-angle action shots. Now they’re just excited when the company squeezes by losing less money.

What Else Is Happening…

  • A Boston hedge fund manager was arrested for running a Ponzi scheme.
  • Fast-casual burger chain, Fatburger, weighs the benefits of an IPO.
  • LinkedIn rolls out Tinder-style service for connecting individuals with mentors.
  • Uber knowingly leased unsafe cars to drivers in Singapore.

Economic Calendar

Water Cooler

Odd Conspiracy Theory of The Week

Conspiracies theories are everywhere. Did Neil Armstrong ever really go to the moon? What exactly is being covered up by the Denver airport? Did someone travel back in time and alter our memory of how the Berenstain Bears actually spell there name?? Seriously, that last one gives us the chills.

But now, the world, along with meme accounts far-and-wide have been knocked off their axes by one startling question (or realization???): Is Outback Steakhouse just a front for a satanic cult?

That’s right. The very same minds (and stomachs) that brought you the Pork Porterhouse might also be the brainchildren behind an underground society of ritualistic demonic worship.

So, what exactly was the discovery? As it turns out,a few different cities across the U.S. (New York, Philly, San Fran and Indianapolis) have Outback locations that link together into one giant, cult-looking star.

The absolutely absurd finding was made when some motley crew of social media savants finally figured out how to combine Apple Maps with Snap’s drawing feature. But, once they saw what they saw, it could never be…unseen.

Outback Steakhouse denies any claims of them being a cult—but isn’t that exactly what you would expect someone running a cult to say?!?!?

But seriously, what’s next? Elon Musk is really a martian trying to find his way home and that’s why he founded SpaceX. Wait a second….


The Breakroom

Question of the Day

Two dice are rolled, what is the probability the sum of the two sides equals 5?

(Give Up?)

Who Am I?

  1. I was asked to leave NYU after a “situation” with my professor.
  2. Prior to my Hollywood career, I started out as a garbage truck driver.
  3. I starred in an eight-year-long ad campaign for a Mexican beer brand.
  4. Stay thirsty Brewers.

(Any guesses?)

Stat of the Day

$591 million

That’s the five-year contract value Brazilian soccer star Neymar agreed to with Paris Saint-Germain (PSG). If everything goes smoothly, it’ll be the most expensive player deal in soccer history.


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