Markets Took Us For One Hell Of A Ride Yesterday

The Water Coolest

The Water Coolest is a free daily business news and professional advice email newsletter created for weekday warriors that is delivered fresh daily at 7 AM EST.

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THE HEADLINES

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ASK ME ANYTHING

Admit it, you’ve got career questions. Maybe its something as simple as “Should I hold out for a bulge bracket offer if I’m an art history major at a non-target?” (hint: probably not) or “Is it cool to ask my intern on a date?” (spoiler: it’s not)

Or maybe it’s the kind of question they won’t answer in b-school. You know, the one that you’ve buried deep down because you’d be ridiculed by your crew at happy hour if you ask them … or you’d be escorted out of the building if you raise it to HR.

That’s why we created a safe space (we are millennials after all) for you to ask our resident work-mom all of your pressing professional development questions anonymously. Ask her ANYTHING.

 

THE CAT’S OUT OF THE BAG

Stock Market Crash

iStockphoto


Cue the stock photos of exhausted traders, head in hand, surrounded by countless computer screens. You know what we’re talking about, BI.

On Tuesday major US indices were less stable than whoever left a pipe bomb in George Soro’s mailbox. The Dow, Nasdaq and S&P 500 were all down more than 2% in early trading, before rallying in the afternoon.

Markets were pulled lower in part due to concerns about Caterpillar’s earnings … which beat estimates for the record. So, what gives? It’s worth noting that CAT has traditionally been considered a bellwether of global economic expansion because it touches on a diverse range of industries including construction and oil.

Despite top-line numbers ($13.5B) that could get investors hot and bothered in the near-term, forward-looking projections sent shares down almost 8%. The maker of real-life Tonka trucks estimates a $100M increase in raw material expenses over the final 6-months of 2018 as a result of tariffs. Plus the trade war is making moving CAT’s big boy toys around the globe even more difficult, adding costs to logistical efforts.

And much to the chagrin of investors, Caterpillar didn’t raise its adjusted profit outlook for 2018.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “The Caterpillar barometer is to economic expansion what the Waffle House index is to weather severity.”

 

MISSED THE MARK

Your girlfriend is not going to be happy …

Refinery29 plans to reduce its workforce by roughly 10%. The media company geared towards millennial women is laying off about 40 staffers from their product, engineering, and video teams.

Refinery29, which most recently had a round of layoffs in December 2017, when it cut around 34 employees, missed its revenue goal for 2018 by around 5%. Missing the mark forced leadership’s hand to cut social media production by 50% (read short, viral videos a la BuzzFeed).

The company still plans to produce video, but it will retrain its sights on premium content that could, in theory, be licensed to TV and streaming networks (… but probably won’t), rather than content with a short shelf life.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “When all else fails, there’s always Facebook Watch.”

 


IN OTHER NEWS

 

  • Zuck is cutting the fat … and we aren’t just talking founders of the companies that Facebook has acquired. The ‘Book will be ditching the bloat associated with it’s Messenger including Stories (as if anyone looks at those), games, and much more. Hopefully, it goes better than Snap’s legendary redesign.

 

 

  • Shots fired. Target is planning to offer free two-day shipping on any order, no matter the amount spent, from November 1st through December 22nd as the online retailer wars heat up during the all-important holiday season. Competitors Walmart and Amazon offer free two-day shipping … at a price. Walmart requires a minimum spend and only Amazon Prime members get access to free two-day shipping.

 

  • It was unsurprising, to say the least when the GOATs of Wall Street and Silicon Valley pulled out of the Future Investment Initiative conference in Saudi Arabia. But few had more on the line than Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son. Softbank had taken billions of dollars for its Vision Fund from the Saudi government and had gathered commitments from the Kingdom for future funds. But on Tuesday Son pulled out of his speaking engagement last minute. MbS can’t even land Tai Lopez.

 

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