Amazon Sold 90,000 TVs On Prime Day, Plus Tesla Introduces An Even Cheaper Model X
“I think it’s obvious it’s a zero now” — Short seller Andrew Left of Citron Research discussing Valeant Pharmaceuticals’ stock. It’s been a rough week for Valeant, as its second-largest shareholder exited all positions, and its former CEO sold more of his holdings than we previously thought. Maybe Left is right.
- Though less positive than in preceding days, the Dow and S&P managed to finish a tad higher as the recent rally begins to lose steam
Alternatives to Watch
- Demand for safe haven assets rose sharply as gold and silver prices jumped and Germany began issuing 10-year bonds in negative-yield territory
- The pound fell further against the dollar as the new Prime Minister of Great Britain, Theresa May, reshuffled her cabinet
It’s a Win-Win
…You save money, Amazon makes bank. The e-commerce giant reported that its second annual Prime Day event was its biggest sales day ever, with worldwide sales rising more than 60% compared to Prime Day last year. How did Bezos and Co. manage to crush it even more than last time? Easy, more products were on sale and Amazon increased the frequency of discounts offered. Although there were reports of technical glitches in the morning, they didn’t stop Amazon from selling more than 90,000 TVs and more than two million toys. It’s Christmas in July.
Dream of Owning a Tesla?
…Maybe now’s the time. The struggling carmaker introduced a more economical version of its Model X crossover yesterday, pricing it at almost $10,000 less than the next most affordable option. The new model will sport a smaller battery but will still feature the “falcon wings,” which make you feel like you’re in a spaceship. It’s no secret that Tesla is in some deep you-know-what, as the carmaker scrambles to reach its ambitious goal of selling 80,000 vehicles this year while dealing with an investigation over its Autopilot technology following a fatal crash. Time to doubt Musk?
Money Doesn’t Grow on Trees
…Often. Yesterday, Unity Technologies announced that it has raised $181 million in its latest round of funding, reportedly valuing the company at $1.5 billion. Never heard of Unity? One of the most popular licensed game engines helped bring you beloved games like—most recently—Pokémon Go. In the past few years Unity has become the game engine of choice, as an estimated five and a half million developers have registered on its platform.
The Fed’s Little Book of Secrets
…Is now publicly available. Yesterday, the Federal Reserve released its latest beige book. The important report reviews economic conditions in each of the 12 Fed districts. Status report? Brexit has been a cause for concern in three main Fed areas, while surprisingly several Fed regions made no mention of the June 23 referendum or its impact. As a whole, the beige book showed that the U.S. economy is expanding at a modest pace. Nice. What’s next? The Fed is set to meet July 26-27, and many economists are expecting the Fed to hold rates steady…big shocker there.
- Line, the year’s biggest tech IPO, goes public
- Ignition switch lawsuits against GM can proceed
- Pokémon Go tops Twitter’s daily users
- Starbucks invests in Italian bakery
- Monday: Labor Market Conditions Index (-)
- Tuesday: Wholesale Trade (+)
- Wednesday: Yum! Brands (+) Earnings; Import and Export Prices (-); Treasury Budget (-)
- Thursday: BlackRock, Delta, JPMorgan Chase Earnings; Weekly Jobless Claims
- Friday: Citi, Wells Fargo Earnings; Consumer Price Index; Retail Sales
Ever wonder where your tax dollars go? Gotten a bit skeptical of politicians’ lavish spending? The French people are experiencing similar outrage: CoiffeurGate. The scandal began after a French satirical newspaper revealed the salary of the hairdresser (“coiffeur” in French) for French President Francois Hollande. Let’s cut to the facts:
- The hairdresser known as Olivier B makes 9,985 euros per month ($11,092), which equates to over $133,000 annually. For perspective, European Parliament members make just $8,213 a month (that’s just base salary, of course).
- The hairdresser signed a five-year contract in May 2012 and by the time it’s over, Olivier will have made over $660,000. Not quite an NBA contract, but not too shabby.
- Believe it or not, Olivier apparently makes 15-20% less than the hairdresser for Nicolas Sarkozy, Hollande’s predecessor. This is nuts.
- The most perplexing part? Hollande himself makes just $16,506 per month, which isn’t even 50% more than his hairdresser. Starting to rethink your career choice?
INTERVIEW QUESTION OF THE DAY
How would you weigh a Boeing 747 without using scales? (Answer 2)
BUSINESS TERM OF THE DAY
FANG Stocks — Acronym for the high-performing tech stocks Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google (now Alphabet). The term was coined by none other than Jim Cramer of Mad Money.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
Boris Johnson is now the foreign minister of the United Kingdom. That’s right—the man who led Britain’s “leave” campaign now has the job of the nation’s chief diplomat. We’ll see how that goes.