Wednesday Morning Reads

Wednesday Morning Reads




Open Interest Changes

Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergei Brin are stepping back from their respective positions as chief executive and president at Alphabet (GOOGGOOGL), extending a long retreat from public roles and active management of the company they co-founded in 1998. Remaining involved as board members, the two will still control a majority of voting power under the corporation's dual-class share structure. Google's existing CEO, Sundar Pichai, will take the reins of Alphabet, paving the future of the company and tackling the regulatory and political hurdles enveloping much of the tech industry.
Go deeper: Michael Wiggins De Oliveira feels Alphabet is undervalued.

Futures stage big turnaround

Despite a 550-point drop for the DJIA over the last two sessions, U.S. futures are now suggesting gains of 0.5-0.7% at the open after sitting deep in the red for most of the night. Trade-inspired movement... Bloomberg reported that the U.S. and China are moving closer to agreeing on the amount of tariffs that would be rolled back in a Phase One trade deal despite legislation over Hong Kong and Xinjiang. The pact would be completed before another tariff deadline on December 15, despite comments a day earlier from President Trump that cast doubt on a quick agreement.
Go deeper: Kristina Hooper still favors risk assets for 2020.

Johnson backs digital services tax

The U.K. risks escalating a European trade war with the U.S. by vowing to push ahead with a British digital sales tax, a day after the Trump administration threatened to punish France for imposing a similar measure. "We need to sort that out and make sure they make a fairer contribution," Prime Minister Boris Johnson declared. Britain is proposing a 2% tax on U.K. revenues of U.S. tech giants, while the French levy is set at 3%.

In need of a little slack

Slack (NYSE:WORK) investors are hoping for some positive news after the bell today as the collaboration-software company reports Q3 results. Slack has had a rough go in public markets since its IPO at $38.50 back in June, and is now trading near $22. Making matters worse, Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) recently announced that Microsoft Teams now has 20M daily active users, making it almost twice the size of Slack. Teams achieved that in just two years since its launch, thanks in part to being bundled with Office 365.
Go deeper: 'Slack: Surviving Competition Will Be Tough' by Kayode Omotosho.


CBS (NYSE:CBS) and Viacom (NASDAQ:VIA) have been "married" and "divorced" before, but the latest merger of the two is expected to finally close today. The combined company will be renamed ViacomCBS and shares will be listed on the Nasdaq under symbols "VIACA" and "VIAC." All under one roof... The new media giant will have Paramount Pictures, the CBS network, CBS All Access, as well as cable players MTV, BET, Nickelodeon and Comedy Central, though analysts have expressed reservations about whether it will be big enough to compete with the likes of Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX).
Go deeper: Netflix should buy ViacomCBS, writes Paul Franke.

Fresh blow to Boeing

United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL) is buying 50 Airbus (OTCPK:EADSY) A321XLR jets for flights between the U.S. east coast and Europe, the latest setback for Boeing (NYSE:BA), which has fallen behind Airbus in their annual contest for orders and deliveries. The 737 MAX also remains grounded across the globe after two deadly crashes that killed 346 people. The new Airbus long-range jets, with a total list value of around $6.5B, will replace United's aging fleet of 53 Boeing 757-200 planes beginning in 2024.

Bat-Bolas a reality

"LAPD takes a page from Batman," reads a headline from the Los Angeles Times, which said the department has begun testing a device that tethers suspects without using force. The news sent shares of manufacturer Wrap Technologies (NASDAQ:WRTCup 17% to $5.05 late Tuesday. The tool, called the BolaWrap 100, fires a Kevlar cord that ensnares an individual's body to restrict mobility, giving officers time to swarm the person without using more extreme measures such as a Taser (NASDAQ:AAXN) or gun.

Record fine upheld against Qualcomm

The Seoul High Court has ruled in favor of South Korea's antitrust regulator, saying its decision to impose a record $873M fine on Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) was justifiable. The case relates to patent licensing and modem chip sales, and maintains the U.S. chip giant abused its dominant position in the mobile communication market. Qualcomm will appeal the decision, which may affect its patent-related profit in South Korea, home to global mobile phone producers like Samsung Electronics (OTC:SSNLF).

Hyundai spends big on EVs, self-driving cars

Calling it "Strategy 2025," the 61.1T won ($51.81B) figure will be spent on future technologies over the next five years, with a third of the expenditure focused on electric and autonomous vehicles. Hyundai Motor (OTCPK:HYMTF) is also looking at developing flying cars, which could be commercialized ahead of the most advanced self-driving cars, according to executive vice chairman Euisun Chung. "Its announcement of investment plan and goals is full of good words, but not real results yet,” said KTB analyst Lee Han-joon, as Hyundai shares pared gains of 2% during the session in Asia.

Rough times for solar business

The U.S. solar industry has lost 62K new jobs and $19B in investments because of the Trump administration's tariffs on imported panels imposed nearly two years ago, according to a new report from the U.S. Solar Industries Association. Despite the tariffs, global panel prices have continued to fall due to an oversupply in top producer China, while U.S. prices are among the highest in the world for solar. A meeting today at the International Trade Commission could decide whether President Trump makes changes to, or even cancels, the four-year tariff that was imposed in early 2018.

What else is happening...

Ford (NYSE:Fmaking parts from McDonald's (NYSE:MCD) coffee waste.

Strength seen in China's services sector.

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJconfirms no asbestos in Baby Powder.

AWS (AMZN) designs more powerful data center chip.

Nintendo (OTCPK:NTDOY) turns on the Switch in China.

Tuesday's Key Earnings
Bank of Montreal (NYSE:BMO-1.8% planning to cut 5% of global workforce.
Marvell Technology (NASDAQ:MRVL+3.2% AH meeting EPS estimates, beating on revenue.
Salesforce (NYSE:CRM-1% AH giving downside EPS outlook.
Workday (NASDAQ:WDAY-1.9% AH hit by an early forecast for 2020.

Today's Markets
In Asia, Japan -1.1%. Hong Kong -1.3%. China -0.2%. India +0.3%.
In Europe, at midday, London +0.2%. Paris +1.2%. Frankfurt +1.2%.
Futures at 6:20, Dow +0.5%. S&P +0.5%. Nasdaq +0.7%. Crude +1.3% to $56.80. Gold -0.2% to $1480.90. Bitcoin -1.3% to $7200.
Ten-year Treasury Yield +4 bps to 1.75%

Today's Economic Calendar
Auto sales
7:00 MBA Mortgage Applications
8:15 ADP Jobs Report
9:45 PMI Services Index
10:00 ISM Non-Manufacturing Index
10:00 Randal Quarles: “Testimony Before the Committee on Financial Services”
10:30 EIA Petroleum Inventories

Known to most as Uranium Pinto Beans, Jason has more than 15 years under his belt of trading stocks, options and currencies. His expertise primarily lies in chart analysis, and he has a strong eye for undervalued stock. Because he’s got the ability to identify great risk/reward trades he usually enjoys taking the path less traveled and reaping the benefits from the adventure.

He is a co-founder of Option Millionaires, and he is best known for his weekly webinars with Scott, as well as his high level training webinars and charts found in the forums.

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