Netflix Doesn’t Think People Will Leave With Higher Prices, Plus An Uber-Like Service For Only Women
“Nobody likes being around poor people, especially poor people” — Steve Wynn, CEO of Wynn Resorts. Wynn wants to create an “environment of wealth” at his casinos. Don’t worry, he got plenty of flak for this.
- U.S. stocks finished the week positive after a rocky week had investors on the edge of their seats, carefully watching as the value of the yen (a safe haven currency) continued to strengthen against the dollar
- European markets finished negative for the fourth straight week despite a solid close on Friday and the European Union ramping up spending to boost investor confidence
Alternatives to Watch
- Oil rose to its highest level in two months as crude data continued to show production declines and major exporters prepare for a global meeting to discuss production freezes
- Sports apparel manufacturer Under Armour successfully underwent a 2-for-1 stock split on Friday, a move that makes shares more affordable to smaller investors
Here We Go Again
Time flies when you’re having fun, and it’s already time for another exciting earnings season. Get pumped—8% of the S&P 500 will reveal their financial results this week. Unfortunately, expectations aren’t looking good this time around, with one analytics firm forecasting an earnings decline of 9.1%. Things look bad, but it’s nothing new; if things go as poorly as predicted, it will be the S&P’s fourth consecutive quarter in the red. Oh, and by the way, this kind of decline hasn’t been seen since the recession. If you’re looking for something to blame, point your fingers at low commodity prices, which will likely dampen the energy and materials sectors. That said, these are just expectations we’re talking about—let’s see if we can’t prove them wrong.
$41,000 Versus $0.41 Per Minute
Ride-hailing? How about car-sharing. BMW just entered the market with a new service line, ReachNow. Seattle’s the lucky city to earn the pilot program, which will give residents access to 400 cars they can pick up and drop off pretty much anywhere within city limits. The concept is financed by YC combinator alum RideCell, and promises to be more profitable than selling cars. How much does it cost you? 41 cents a minute. Cool idea, right? Daimler and Audi thought so too—they’ve also piloted similar programs in Miami, New York, San Francisco and a few more lucky cities.
Netflix: Not Chill
If you were an OG (and loyal, if we might add) customer of Netflix, you’ve been paying the standard $7.99 monthly rate. Don’t shoot the messenger, but we come bearing bad news: Netflix is now “un-grandfathering” all customers and pricing accounts starting at $9.99 per month. According to UBS analysts, 37% of customers will be affected, but they only expect 3-4% of customers to exercise their purchasing power and leave. Looks like Netflix called our bluff, and we’re paying the price.
Great, another new ridesharing app. Do we really need another Uber, Lyft, Curb or what have you? Evidently, women do: set to launch in Boston on April 19, Chariot for Women is a ridesharing service for women, by women. An Uber driver came up with the idea after he recognized that many women didn’t feel safe when ridesharing—hence Chariot, which caters to women only and employs…you guessed it, only female drivers. But not so fast. As you might expect, Chariot will likely face illegal discrimination challenges ahead. Get your popcorn ready for a potential Supreme Court showdown in the future.
- SoulCycle’s founders have resigned
- Twitter appoints two new board directors
- SpaceX makes historic rocket landing
- Wells Fargo admits deception in $1.2 billion U.S. mortgage accord
- Monday: Aloca, Kinder Morgan Earnings
- Tuesday: JPMorgan Chase Earnings; Import/Export Prices
- Wednesday: Retail Sales; Producer Price Index; Business Inventories; Beige Book
- Thursday: Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Delta, Progressive Earnings; Consumer Price Index; Weekly Jobless Claims
- Friday: Citigroup, Charles Schwab, Seagate Earnings; Industrial Production; Consumer Sentiment; Empire State Manufacturing Survey
GOLF’S BIG MAKEOVER
The 80th Masters tournament just wrapped up, and it was the first to let you watch the entire thing live on your iPhone—in 4K video quality. The PGA is adopting new tech all over the place, and partnerships between the 86-year-old PGA Tour and much younger companies are springing up left and right. Old, but never too old to change—here are some examples:
- The Masters’ smartphone app received a big update: viewers were able to track specific players who may not show up on TV broadcasts.
- The PGA Tour also made a deal with GoPro in March for tournament footage, making golf almost as edgy as wind surfing. Bonus: rumor has it drones will soon make an appearance on courses to help capture the perfect shot.
- Why does all this matter? Golf is an aging sport, with youth participation, equipment sales and course openings on the decline. With fresh innovation on and off the course, the PGA is hoping to capture the interest of young viewers, and bring an elderly sport back to the cutting edge.
INTERVIEW QUESTION OF THE DAY
Jack is looking at Anne, but Anne is looking at George. Jack is married, but George is not. Is a married person looking at an unmarried person? (Answer)
BUSINESS TERM OF THE DAY
Enterprise Value — A measure of a company’s total value. It is often used as a more comprehensive alternative to equity market capitalization since it could be thought of as the theoretical takeover price if the company were to be bought. By including debt and cash, EV can be a more accurate representation of a firm’s value.
Here’s the equation to calculate Enterprise Value: EV = market value of common stock + market value of preferred equity + market value of debt + minority interest – cash and investments.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
800,000: the number of live viewers who watched BuzzFeed’s livestream (using Facebook’s new Facebook Live feature) of its employees putting rubber bands around a watermelon one at a time until the watermelon exploded. Who would have thought that millennials could pay that much attention to live TV?