Black Panther Hits $1B; Goldman Sach’s CEO To Step Down; Intel Gearing Up For Fight
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DEL BOCA VISTA BOUND
Not every master of the universe is a soulless, money hungry monster. Take Lloyd Blankfein for example. Sure, he might be a vilified Wall Street CEO, but he sure is funny on Twitter, comparing the Wall Street Journal’s coverage of his retirement to Huck Finn watching his own funeral. How relatable!
But alas, it appears that Lloyd may be kicking off his victory lap, ending a 12-year stint as CEO of Goldman Sachs. The end of his tenure may come as soon as the end of this year but his legacy remains to be seen. Despite weathering the financial crisis, Lloyd admitted he didn’t exactly get Goldman’s sh*t together soon after. But all is forgiven when your stock hits an all-time high. Right
The current CEO has two Jedi apprentices waiting in the shadows, seeking to wield the power of The Force. Over the next few months, Bank Co-presidents Harvey Schwartz and David Solomon will do more jockeying than John Adam’s Junior High students trying to get seven minutes in heaven with Topanga Lawrence.
Water Cooler Talking Point: “I’m not going to miss Lloyd’s “contributions to society” or his half-hearted Twitter funnies, but I’m going to really, really miss his mug adorning quite possibly one of the best Twitter accounts of all time: @GSElevator.”
ANYTHING YOU CAN DO, I CAN DO BETTER
Intel has been sleeping with one eye open as one of their main competitors, Broadcom, looks to buy Qualcomm, another competitor, to create an even more formidable competitor. You know, like when those cartoon tree huggers “let their powers combine!” If the deal goes through, Intel is threatening to turn around and put a bid in for Broadcom.
If Intel were to pursue Broadcom, the deal would be the largest that Intel has ever made. And there’s no guarantee that Johnny Law would allow the convergence of two such rivals. Intel already has roughly $240B in market value, and a purchase of their largest competitor smells a lot like a monopoly.
The company whose marketing tactics include sticker-bombing PCs has been on a shopping spree as of late. Their latest retail therapy session ended with the $15.3B purchase of car-camera technology maker Mobileye NV.
Water Cooler Talking Point: “This goes back to the old ‘my dad could beat up your dad’ argument we all had in elementary school, only, in this case, our dads are multi-billion dollar chip manufacturers.”
THAT KENDRICK LAMAR MUSIC VIDEO
The verdict is in: if Siskel and Ebert were still “At the Movies” they’d give Black Panther two-thumbs-up. After a record-breaking debut, the latest Marvel installment is clawing its way to the top of the all-time grossing movie charts. As of this weekend, the action-thriller hit $1B.
The movie passed its final test, raking in $67M in China over the weekend, blowing other comic book titles out of the water. And the film dominated the domestic box office for a fourth straight week, making easy work of Oprah’s sci-fi children’s film “Wrinkle in Time.” So much for the Oprah effect.
Critics have praised the movie for having the first black superhero in a leading role, seemingly having forgotten Will Smith’s performance in Hancock (and Hitch, if emotional superheroes count). And the film has proven it’s a movie of the people, garnering a 97% on Rotten Tomatoes.
Water Cooler Talking Point: “Full disclosure, I haven’t seen this movie. Planned to over the weekend and my friend saw it the day before, without me. All I know is Michael B. Jordan needed more screen time.”
IN OTHER NEWS
- Pharma Bro, Martin Shkreli, will spend 7 years in jail for securities fraud. This, of course, is the good news for Shkreli. The bad news? Reports are surfacing that his $2M one of a kind Wu-Tang album was fake.
- In February the US added 313k new jobs to the economy. Just imagine what could have been if it was a leap year.
- Claire’s Accessories, a mall staple, plans to file for bankruptcy citing a crushing $2B debt load. Maybe basing the business model on ear piercings wasn’t the best idea after all.
- Peter Thiel’s Palantir, a data mining company, won an Army contract worth $876M. It’s worth noting that Peter Thiel was one of Silicon Valley’s biggest Trump supporters. I’ll just leave that right here.
- Salesforce added a new section to their annual report that had nothing to do with money. It highlights their social and environmental activism. Benioff is like that kid in high school who always screws up the test curve.
- US indices were up Friday:
- DOW: +1.77%
- S&P 500: +1.74%
- NASDAQ: +1.79%
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A TRADITION UNLIKE ANY OTHER
With Selection Sunday in the rearview, corporate piss-ants will engage in countless hours of bracketology, sh*t talking, and illegal gambling. But quite possibly the most timeless of all the traditions used to fill the void before tip-off on Thursday is the annual “lost workplace productivity” article. You know, the one where a prestigious (read: one you’ve never heard of) consultancy claims companies will lose upwards of *moves pinky to corner of mouth* $297 trillion over the course of March Madness.
The Fox Sports News Blog Network article will make the rounds on social and undoubtedly get forwarded to you, ironically accounting for no less than 3 additional minutes of lost productivity.
Unsolicited Advice: “If your company doesn’t allow for “friendly” wagering while HR looks the other way, you probably shouldn’t be reading up on which Five-Twelve Seed upset you’re going to take, you should be looking for a new job. And have some respect for yourself, stop hunching over in your cubicle watching games on your phone with headphones on … find yourself a BW3 and let the lunch beers flow. You deserve it.”