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The latest news from Business Insider

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    Palmer Luckey

    • Facebook has denied a media report suggesting it fired former executive Palmer Luckey for his right-wing views.
    • The Wall Street Journal said Luckey, the founder of Oculus, was fired after donating $10,000 to a group that posted anti-Hillary Clinton memes and after voicing support for Donald Trump.
    • But Facebook executive Andrew Bosworth has strongly denied this, as has a spokeswoman.
    • There's a wider culture war in Silicon Valley, with conservative supporters claiming most tech firms have a liberal bias.

    Facebook has denied firing one of its former senior executives, Palmer Luckey, for his conservative views.

    The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday that Luckey's departure came after The Daily Beast reported he donated $10,000 to an anti-Hillary Clinton group, and after longtime support of Donald Trump during the presidential campaign in 2016.

    According to the Journal, citing leaked emails, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg even pressured Luckey to switch his support from Trump to Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson. As the newspaper tells it, Luckey was put on leave after his donation and then fired in March 2017. He reportedly negotiated a $100 million payout after hiring an employment lawyer to argue Facebook had broken California law.

    Read more: Facebook won't force employees to settle sexual harassment claims privately thanks to the Google walkout protests

    Luckey believes that he was fired from Facebook due to his political views, the newspaper reported. Trump is largely unpopular in Silicon Valley, where most tech employees support liberal candidates, according to the non-profit Open Secrets.

    But Facebook executive Andrew Bosworth, who now oversees the Oculus division, issued a strong statement denying that Luckey had been fired for his political leanings.

    He wrote: "Any claims that his departure was do to his conservative beliefs are false."

    When asked whether he thought Luckey himself may have been the source of the Journal's story, Bosworth wrote: "I honestly have no idea who their sources are, just that what was shared was not the truth and that the information provided appears to have been carefully selected to lead the reporters to one specific, and erroneous, conclusion."


    Facebook likewise denied Luckey had been fired for supporting Trump. A spokeswoman told the Journal: "We can say unequivocally that Palmer’s departure was not due to his political views. We’re grateful for Palmer’s contributions to Oculus, and we’re glad he continues to actively support the VR industry."

    And sources speaking to the Journal suggested the fact that Luckey hid his donation to a group which posted memes maligning Hillary Clinton, and his stepping back from Oculus were factors in his departure.

    Luckey did not immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment, but told the Wall Street Journal: "I believe the team that remains at Oculus is still the best in the VR industry, and I am rooting for them to succeed."

    The Journal's story comes as conservative figures in California, such as Peter Thiel, argue that tech firms are dominated by liberals at executive and employee level and that different views are stifled. Google's firing of James Damore, who wrote a controversial memo about the firm's diversity practices, was seen as a watershed moment. Brian Amerige, a former Facebook engineer, likewise quit the firm and claimed an "intolerant" culture.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: A cybersecurity expert showed us how hackers can tap into an office phone and listen to everything you're saying

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    F/A-18 Super Hornet USS Reagan

    • A US F-18 fighter jet based on the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan crashed into the Philippine Sea on Monday.
    • Both pilots ejected safely and the Nimitz-class supercarrier's rescue aircraft picked them up.
    • The F-18, from Carrier Air Wing 5, went down due to "mechanical issues," the Navy said.   
    • It's the second military aircraft incident in the last 30 days, after a MH-60 Seahawk crashed onto the deck of USS Ronald Reagan on October 19.

    A US Navy F-18 fighter jet crashed into the Philippine Sea early on Monday morning in the second aircraft mishap aboard the USS Ronald Reagan within a month. 

    The F-18, part of Carrier Air Wing  5 onboard the USS Ronald Reagan, experienced a "mechanical issue that resulted in the crew ejecting" while carrying out "routine operations" from the Nimitz-class supercarrier, the US Navy 7th Fleet said.

    Both pilots managed to eject before the plane impacted the sea off the coast of the Philippines, and rescue aircraft based off the USS Ronald Reagan swiftly picked them up, they said.


    On October 19, a US Navy MH-60 Seahawk helicopter crashed onto the deck of the USS Ronald Reagan, injuring a dozen sailors, but causing no fatalities.

    Read more: F-35 embarrassed by Tom Cruise's new 'Top Gun' movie going with its older competitor, the F-18.

    The Navy say the pilots are in a good condition and were evaluated by medical personnel after their rescue. They said the crash is now under investigation.

    The USS Ronald Reagan has now resumed normal operations after the incident, currently supporting "security and stability in the Indo-Pacific region," the Navy said.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Navy SEALs explain the dangers of overplanning in both the military and business

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    elon musk champagne

    • WeWork, Uber and Tesla are banking on their brand name appeal to pile on junk debt typically deemed too risky for lesser known peers with better credit.
    • Investors are eager to lend to them, favoring companies' potential over their underlying financial health, because those chasing yield haven't had a lot of choice lately.
    • "In general, unicorns don’t belong in high yield," says one fund manager.


    Some of the biggest darlings of the tech industry have joined Tesla recently in piling on cheap debt to fuel booming growth plans, relying on their size and brand-name appeal to secure funding typically deemed too risky for lesser-known peers with better credit.

    WeWork, rated B, (otherwise known as junk) issued a $702 million bond in April. Uber issued a $2 billion junk bond deal last month, despite rapid cash burn and growing competition. And while Tesla's precarious debt situation is nothing new, it's in a similar boat to the others. Tesla is giving some investors jitters because it has $1.6 billion of maturities looming over the next 12 months.

    Investors are favoring companies' potential over their underlying financial health, in part because they're benefitting from the "halo effect" of their sexy, big-name brands, says Christian Hoffmann, a portfolio manager at Thornburg Investment Management.

    It's a marked shift in the industry. Demand is growing, for now. But it's a risky scenario.

    Unicorns don't belong

    "In general, unicorns don’t belong in high yield," said John McClain, a portfolio manager at Diamond Hill, a US investment firm that manages fixed-income funds. "Putting financial leverage on companies with high levels of operating leverage, minimal tangible assets, and/or the ability to generate cash flow is irresponsible."

    Leverage refers to the amount of debt a company has amassed over its earnings. Having high leverage means a company has more debt than assets available to pay off debts at a given time.

    On the whole, investors tend to steer clear of companies that are highly leveraged or have far from robust credit metrics, says Christian Hoffmann, a portfolio manager at Thornburg Investment Management. 

    Take WeWork: The company received $4.4 billion in investment from a major SoftBank fund last year but runs an "asset light" model because it leases most of its office space. Despite plenty of hype, the company posts loss after loss, and according to Moody’s, is unlikely to turn a profit anytime soon.

    In August, Moody’s took the unusual step of withdrawing a B3 rating on the New York-based company, citing a lack of information. For bond holders, the company's limited assets make it a riskier proposition in repayment terms if things go south.

    Chasing yield is getting tougher

    Tesla’s high leverage and cash burning activities have given some investors cause for concern because the company will eventually need some way of paying it off, and it's not clear it will be that easy. The company took its first foray into the junk bond market in August 2017 with a $1.8 billion issue.

    WeWork declined to comment for this story. Uber and Tesla didn't respond to requests for comment.

    Bond investors chasing yield haven't had a lot of choice lately. But they have found a home in this part of the market. With high return comes more risk, though. A set of poor earnings could lead to declining confidence from lenders and greater scrutiny of the market. Throw in a US recession, and things could get very, very bad.

    These companies and other unicorns tend to be "highly reliant on capital markets and have very pressing debt issues,” McClain said. 

    And then there's Uber's. Its $2 billion bond deal last month was compared to deals by WeWork and Tesla, because of the company’s rapid cash burn as competition heats up with rival ride hailer Lyft. Uber lost an eye-watering $4.5 billion in 2017. The company was able to issue its bonds via a private placement, allowing it to bypass the Securities and Exchange Commission’s reporting requirements.

    So-called "leveraged loans" have garnered a lot of negative attention lately, with former Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen and the Bank of England among those sounding the alarm on their potential risk. But the $1.6 trillion market is hot nonetheless: Responding to strong demand, Uber also raised a $1.5 billion leveraged loan directly from investors in March, a higher amount than the company had originally planned.

    Leveraged loans differ from high-yield bonds in that they are secured, meaning creditors are paid before bondholders. Volumes have spiked in recent years with covenants protecting lenders from defaults deteriorating over this period, making the loans more akin to bonds.

    McClain said that the high-yield market has been lucrative to tech stocks because financing has tended to be cheaper and more effective than selling more stock.

    The message is clear: If you're a big-name tech company with even bigger ambitions, investors are lining up to lend to you.


    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The economist that predicted the housing crisis warns the Fed is engaging in behavior that's almost always caused a recession

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    masayoshi son

    • Japanese conglomerate SoftBank is launching an initial public offering (IPO) of its mobile division in December.
    • The IPO is set at 2.4 trillion yen, roughly $21 billion, making it one of the biggest floats ever.
    • SoftBank is known for its investments in tech, many of which are done through its Saudi-backed Vision Fund.

    SoftBank has been granted approval for an initial public offering of its telecoms division at 2.4 trillion yen ($21.04 billion), a filing showed on Monday.

    A new entity called SoftBank Corp will list on the Tokyo Stock Exchange in December 19, and the price will be set on December 10.

    The company is selling 1.6 billion SoftBank Corp shares at 1,500 yen each, with the parent company holding on to a 66.5 % stake. An anonymous source told Reuters that more than 80% of the shares will be offered to domestic retail investors.

    The IPO is already being reported as one of the "biggest IPOs ever." SoftBank is famous as an investor in tech, with its $98 billion Vision Fund injecting huge amounts of capital into companies such as Uber and WeWork.

    The float will give SoftBank an additional injection of cash as chief executive Masayoshi Son looks to power more tech deals.

    Read more: SoftBank's Saudi-backed Vision Fund is raising another $4 billion

    SoftBank's shares took a big hit in October due to its ties to Saudi Arabia and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, following the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul on October 2.

    In November SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son decried Khashoggi's murder but defended the Vision Fund, roughly half of which is backed with money from Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund.

    SEE ALSO: SoftBank has a special fund focused on AI that's separate from the Vision Fund, and it just backed one of its first startups outside Japan

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    NOW WATCH: Why Amazon reportedly wants to open 3,000 automated stores

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    Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin

    • Presidents Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin both attended a World War I commemorative event in Paris this weekend.
    • Putin said on Sunday that France asked that he and Trump not meet one-on-one at the event, and that he agreed to the request.
    • But later that day he said he did end up having a brief conversation with Trump, describing the chat as a "good" one.
    • The two leaders were meant to sit next to each other at lunch, but France changed the seating plan at the last minute.
    • Russian newspaper Kommersant reported that French President Emmanuel Macron personally asked that Trump and Putin not meet so that they don't upstage him.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin said France specifically asked him not to hold one-on-one meetings with Donald Trump during World War I commemorations in Paris this weekend — but he ended up chatting to him anyway.

    Putin said on Sunday afternoon that he agreed to the request so as to "not violate" France's planned events. He told the state-owned RT news channel, according to the state-run Interfax news agency: "We will agree that we will not violate the schedule of the host party here: at their request, we will not organize any meetings here."

    Less than an hour later, however, Putin told reporters that he did end up having a brief conversation with Trump.

    When asked by journalists whether he had a chance to talk to Trump, Putin said "yes," Interfax and RT reported. According to RT, Putin added that the chat was "good." Where and when that talk took place is not clear.

    Read more: Putin saved his warmest greeting for Trump as he met world leaders in Paris, and Trump returned the love

    Trump Putin1.JPG

    The leaders had been in Paris over the weekend to mark 100 years since the armistice that ended World War I. German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Canadian President Justin Trudeau, and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker also attended the commemoration.

    It was the first time the two leaders met since their summit in Helsinki in July, during which Trump claimed that he didn't "see any reason" why Russia would interfere in the 2016 presidential elections. National-security experts said that the US president behaved like a "controlled spy."

    According to the Russian newspaper Kommersant, the request that Putin and Trump not meet one-on-one came from French President Emmanuel Macron himself.

    The French president asked that his Russian and US counterparts not hold negotiations in Paris so that they would not "eclipse" the events and meetings that Paris had organized, Kommersant said, a European diplomatic source.

    trump putin merkel macron wwi commemoration paris

    Paris' eagerness that Trump and Putin not meet even resulted in the last-minute change in the seating plan at a lunch for the leaders at the Elysée Paris, RT reported.

    A preliminary seating plan of the lunch showed Trump placed next to Putin, The Guardian reported, but photos of the lunch released by the Russian presidency showed Putin seated between Juncker and UN Secretary-General António Guterres.

    Trump, meanwhile, was placed next to Macron, who was sat opposite Putin — making it difficult for the US and Russian presidents to have personal asides, The Guardian reported.

    White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the leaders discussed a "variety of issues," including the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces treaty that Trump threatened to withdraw from, North Korea, and Syria.

    Putin said he hopes to meet Trump one-on-one on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Argentina in late November instead, RT and Interfax reported.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Megyn Kelly in 2017: 'I regret a lot' of the controversial stuff I've said on live television

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    house of holland frayed denim jacket

    • A House of Holland jacket, available on ASOS, is raising eyebrows across the world.
    • The half blue, half red frayed denim jacket retails for $395.
    • It even has detachable sleeves, and has been described as "a millennial shedding its skin."

    From Carmar Denim's "extreme cut-out" jeans to Pretty Little Thing's hi-vis jacket, fashion today is nothing if not inventive. 

    However, it's safe to say that the more "creative" product launches tend to raise eyebrows amongst the general public.

    The latest confusing item of clothing to perplex shoppers across the globe is House of Holland's "vivid contrast oversized denim jacket."

    Half pale washed denim, half coated red denim, the jacket comes complete with a frayed border between the two parts — not to mention removable sleeves (detachable via zips round the shoulders). There's certainly a lot going on.

    Read more: Meghan Markle took a break from designer clothes to wear a $56 maternity dress from ASOS

    Somehow, it's sold out on House of Holland's website, but the jacket is available on ASOS, whose fashion experts suggest that it's perfect for "when one color just won't do."

    Oh, and it costs $395.

    The jacket was recently brought to public attention after being shared on the Instagram account @asbos_sos, which shares ASOS' more unique, amusing, and questionable items with its 15,000 followers.

    "A rare sighting of a millennial shedding its skin in preparation for the colder months," the account wrote of the jacket.

    Instagram users seemed to enjoy the comment, and some couldn't help but express their amusement at the bewildering fashion item in the comments.

    If you feel the jacket is the transitional item your seasonal wardrobe has been crying out for, you can get matching jeans, too.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: A fashion company makes bras and leggings with a pockets for your phone

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    Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (33) Aston Martin Red Bull Racing RB14 TAG Heuer spins after crashing with Esteban Ocon of France and Force India during the Formula One Grand Prix of Brazil at Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace on November 11, 2018 in Sao Paulo, Brazil. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

    • Tempers were lost at the Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday as Red Bull driver Max Verstappen collided with Force India's Esteban Ocon.
    • Verstappen was leading the pack at the time and seemed to have the race sewn up when he ran into 14th-place Ocon, who he had just lapped.
    • Ocon was attempting to unlap himself at the time — a move which is rarely attempted against the race leader.
    • Ocon was handed a 10-second stop/start penalty for causing the collision.
    • The crash cost Verstappen the race as it allowed Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton to cruise to victory, and he was understandably furious.
    • The Red Bull driver confronted Ocon at the post-race drivers' weigh-in and started shoving him.
    • Verstappen later branded Ocon a "p----."
    • Stewards handed the driver two days public service for the altercation.

    With his world championship already in the bag, Britain's Lewis Hamilton won the Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday — but it could have been a different story.

    Red Bull driver Max Verstappen had driven sublimely, starting in fifth and climbing four places in 16 laps to overtake Räikkönen, Vettel, Bottas and finally Hamilton to lead the race.

    The Dutch 21-year-old managed his tires well, meaning he could make a pit stop much later than second-place Hamilton and switch to much faster, soft tires.

    By lap 44 Verstappen had a vice-like grip on the race and looked to be cruising to victory — until he lapped 14th-place Force India driver Esteban Ocon.

    Attempting to unlap himself, Ocon held his line through the second corner and collided with Verstappen sending them both into a tailspin.

    "What a f------ idiot. What a f------ idiot," Verstappen could be heard shouting on his team radio.

    In Formula One, it is customary not to interfere with the race leader if you're being lapped. However, you are allowed to unlap yourself.

    Unlapping is extremely rare against the race leader, though, and Verstappen was clearly not expecting to find Ocon between his car and the apex when the two collided.

    Ocon was handed a 10-second stop/start penalty for causing the collision, but the damage incurred on Verstappen's Red Bull meant he was unable to catch up with Hamilton's Mercedes, which cruised to victory.

    The drama didn't stop there, though. At the post-race weigh-in, an incensed Verstappen confronted Ocon and started pushing him.

    You can watch the crash and following altercation below.

    Commenting on the fracas, Verstappen said: "We are passionate about the sport, it would be odd if I shook his hand," adding: "I don't really have a lot to comment on that, except that he was being a p----."

    The two drivers were later summoned to the stewards' office and the Dutchman was handed two days public service at the direction of the FIA.

    "The Stewards understood from Max Verstappen that he was extremely upset by the incident on track during the race and accepted his explanation that it was not his original intent to strike Ocon, but that he was 'triggered' and caused him to lose his temper," read the official stewards verdict.

    "While sympathetic to Verstappen's passion, the Stewards determined that it is the obligation of sportsmen at this level to act appropriately and as role models to other drivers at all levels and found that Verstappen failed in this respect."

    Red Bull team principal Christian Horner backed his driver, though: "As a lapped car you should not interfere with the leader," he said. "What was Ocon thinking of there? It beggars belief. It makes no sense at all."

    Horner even backed Verstappen's post-race actions and said Ocon got off lightly: "Esteban was lucky to get away with a push, to be honest. Max has lost a victory through no fault of his own. It is hugely frustrating to lose a victory through a back marker."

    SEE ALSO: The most expensive, rare, and bizarre vehicles Lewis Hamilton drives when he's not racing

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Inside an intense training session where aspiring WWE wrestlers learn how to fight

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    Roger Federer umpire

    • Roger Federer lost his cool and then the match at the ATP Tour Finals on Sunday.
    • Federer put the wrong foot forward from the off, when he accidentally hit himself in the face with a ball in the opening set of his loss to Kei Nishikori.
    • Federer then refused to engage with the chair umpire and turned up "angry" to the post match press conference.

    Roger Federer accidentally hit himself in the face with a tennis ball, lost a match, and then turned up "angry" to the post-match press conference at the ATP Tour finals in London on Sunday.

    The 37-year-old is on the prowl for a 100th ATP Tour title, but his hopes of hitting that milestone took a knock at the weekend when he was upset in straight sets by Kei Nishikori.

    Things were perhaps never destined to go Federer's way, because the veteran tennis player scuffed a shot intended for his opponent by hitting it into the scruff of his own neck instead.

    Watch the weird return below:

    That opening set faux pas was one of Federer's many mistakes as his serve was wayward, he missed straight-forward ground strokes, and made 34 unforced errors en route to his 7-6(4) 6-3 loss to Nishikori.

    At one point, he refused to engage with the chair umpire Damien Steiner because of confusion over a challenge.

    Federer also received a code violation from Steiner when he lashed a tennis ball into the crowd at the 02 Arena in London after losing a point.

    "He thought I was angry. I wasn't," Federer later said at the post match press conference, according to the New York Times. "Now I'm angry because I lost."

    According to the Metro, he also said he could not understand Steiner's decision. "Yeah, I was, just because I thought what was his argument, you know, why the warning."

    Roger Federer lost his cool

    Federer won the 99th trophy of a record-breaking career when he scooped the Swiss Indoors title in Basel last month.

    He competed in the Paris Masters soon after and beat Milos Raonic, Fabio Fognini, and Nishikori to set up an incredible semifinal against Novak Djokovic, whom he narrowly lost to in one of the best tennis matches you'll see all year.

    He plays Dominic Thiem in the second round robin match of the ATP Tour finals on Tuesday evening (local time).

    SEE ALSO: The normally mild-mannered Roger Federer argued with an umpire and smacked his racket on the ground before crashing out of the Indian Wells final

    DON'T MISS: Roger Federer says Serena Williams 'went too far' at the US Open, but still thinks tennis stars are better behaved than the likes of Conor McGregor

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Inside an intense training session where aspiring WWE wrestlers learn how to fight

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    Samsung Foldable phone

    • Samsung will reportedly release its foldable smartphone in March, according to South Korean news agency Yonhap news.
    • Yonhap reports that the name of the phone would be, "Galaxy F," a name which has been rumoured for the device before.
    • It also says that "industry watchers" guess the phone will cost $1,770.

    Samsung is reportedly getting ready to release its highly anticipated foldable phone in March 2019 for over $1,700, South Korean news agency Yonhap reports.

    The book-like folding display was first unveiled by Samsung a week ago. While the display was dubbed "Infinity Flex," Samsung didn't reveal the name for the phone itself. Yonhap's report says it will be named the "Galaxy F," which was already rumoured to a potential name for the device along with "Galaxy X."

    Read more:Take a look at this video of Samsung's new foldable smartphone in action

    Citing industry sources, Yonhap says Samsung will launch the folding phone alongside the 5G edition of its Galaxy S10 phone.

    It also says that "industry watchers" estimate the phone's sale price at around 2 million won, equivalent to $1,770. The CEO of Samsung DJ Koh reportedly said last week that Samsung will ship at least 1 million of the devices.

    The reports are still largely speculative, and Business Insider has contacted Samsung for comment.

    SEE ALSO: Samsung finally unveiled details about its foldable smartphone — here's how it works

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Watch Apple's October 2018 event in 8 minutes

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    California wildfires

    Here is what you need to know.

    Saudi Arabia vows to cut oil production. West Texas Intermediate crude oil gained as much as 1.8% to $61.28 a barrel early Monday after the Saudi oil minister, Khalid al-Falih, reportedly told reporters that the kingdom planned to cut production by 500,000 barrels a day in December.

    The UK is edging closer to a no-deal Brexit. Prime Minister Theresa May is reportedly planning to trigger a no-deal Brexit unless there is a breakthrough in talks this week between UK and EU negotiators.

    It's all going dark in the gambling capital of the world. Wynn Resorts last week forecast doom for revenue in the gambling capital of the world — Macau — and while some on Wall Street say the casino giant is being overly conservative, economic indicators on mainland China tell a different story.

    An investing strategy that's withstood the worst stock-market crashes since the 1920s is on the verge of a comeback. Growth stocks have dominated during the bull market, but Societe Generale says the conditions are now ripe for value investing to make a comeback.

    The world's biggest tech investor is targeting a $21 billion IPO in December. The Japanese conglomerate SoftBank is launching a 2.4 trillion yen (~$21 billion) initial public offering for its mobile division. The IPO's size will make it one of the biggest floats ever.

    Alibaba makes e-commerce history. The online retailer raked in $30.8 billion in a 24-hour span as part of its Singles Day celebration.

    SAP is buying the startup Qualtrics days before it's scheduled to go public. The German database giant has agreed to pay $8 billion for the experience-management startup Qualtrics just days before Qualtrics was expected to go public at a valuation of more than $5 billion.

    British American Tobacco plunges on report the US could ban methanol cigarettes. Shares of the cigarette maker fell by as much as 11% in London after The Wall Street Journal, citing senior agency officials, reported late Friday that the US Food and Drug Administration's commissioner, Scott Gottlieb, wanted to ban methanol cigarettes.

    Stock markets around the world trade mixed. China's Shanghai Composite (+1.22%) paced the gains in Asia, and Germany's DAX (-0.53%) lags in Europe. The S&P 500 is set to open little changed near 2,781, while the US Treasury market is closed in observance of Veterans Day.

    Earnings reporting is light. Aurora Cannabis reports ahead of the opening bell.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: There's so much CO2 in the atmosphere that planting trees can no longer save us

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    social media depression

    • A new study has shown a link between social media use and depression.
    • Research has been hinting at the connection for several years, but scientists from the University of Pennsylvania say this is the most comprehensive, rigorous study yet.
    • People tend to show a more glamorous, positive, and envious lifestyle on their social media.
    • But social media isn't all bad.
    • Like many things, it's all about balance and moderation.

    Ever since sites like Facebook and Instagram became part of daily life, scientists have wondered whether they contribute to mental health problems. In fact, research has hinted at a connection between social media use and depression for several years.

    A new study, published in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, has added more evidence to the theory.

    The researchers from the University of Pennsylvania designed their experiment to be more comprehensive than previous studies on the topic. Rather than relying on short-term lab data or self-reported questionnaires, they recruited 143 undergraduate students to share screenshots of their Phone battery screens over a week to collect data on how much they were using social media apps — Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram.

    Subjects were told either to maintain their typical social media behaviour, or limit it to 10 minutes per day. Alongside the screen shot data, the researchers also looked at how much the participants experienced fear of missing out, anxiety, depression, and loneliness.

    friends traveling and take selfie

    Read more:Yale psychiatrist has one explanation for why students these days are so anxious

    "Here's the bottom line," said Melissa G. Hunt, a psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania and lead author of the study. "Using less social media than you normally would leads to significant decreases in both depression and loneliness. These effects are particularly pronounced for folks who were more depressed when they came into the study."

    She added 18-to-22-year-olds shouldn't stop using social media altogether, but cutting down might be beneficial.

    "It is a little ironic that reducing your use of social media actually makes you feel less lonely," she said.

    "Some of the existing literature on social media suggests there's an enormous amount of social comparison that happens. When you look at other people's lives, particularly on Instagram, it's easy to conclude that everyone else's life is cooler or better than yours."

    People tend to show a more glamorous, positive, and envious lifestyle on their social media. In fact, over half of millennials admit they portray their relationship as better than it really is.

    This is a problem because your social media life can become like a negative feedback loop — wanting others to be jealous of your life, while constantly comparing yourself to those on your feed.

    "If you spend most of your time scrolling through your newsfeed checking out other people's lives and compare them to your own, you become more at risk of developing (or having worsening) symptoms of depression or anxiety," psychologist Allison Abrams told Business Insider. "This is especially so in those with low self esteem."

    Read more: Half of millennials portray their relationship on social media as better than it really is — here's why that's a problem

    A study earlier this year found teens who spend too much time looking at screens are more unhappy. But, if they spent just less than an hour using the technology, the opposite was true.

    The results suggest social media and screens should be used in moderation, just like most things. But they are probably not as bad for us as we've been led to believe.

    In fact, one expert — Andrew Przybylski, a senior research fellow at the Oxford Internet Institute — told Business Insider that much of our bias against social media may simply be a projection of our own fears. We talk to each other about how smartphones are decreasing our intelligence and ruining our real friendships, but in reality, we may just be worrying that this is true.

    screen night time

    Looking at screens isn't a good idea if you're doing it in lieu of any physical exercise or sleep. But used in moderation, technology is handy for staying in touch with friends when in-person contact isn't a possibility, and video games can improve your skills in coordination, problem-solving, and memory.

    Hunt said the new study only looked at three social media apps, so it's not clear if it applies more broadly. But she hopes to answer more questions with further research. Overall, she said there are two conclusions we can reach from the study's results.

    "When you're not busy getting sucked into clickbait social media, you're actually spending more time on things that are more likely to make you feel better about your life." she said. "In general, I would say, put your phone down and be with the people in your life."

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    NOW WATCH: This company spent 10 years developing a product that allows humans to scale walls like a gecko

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    Donald Trump Rain

    • Inclement weather stopped President Trump's helicopter getting him to a WWI memorial in Paris on Saturday, the White House said.
    • He couldn't drive there as "he did not want to cause that kind of unexpected disruption to the city and its people," The White House said on Sunday.
    • "A motorcade would have required closures to substantial portions of the Paris roadways," it said.
    • Trump spent that part of Saturday at the US Ambassador's house, and attended a different military graveyard on Sunday instead.

    President Donald Trump couldn't get to at a memorial service for WWI soldiers on Saturday because he didn't want to mess-up traffic near Paris, the White House said on Sunday.

    Trump was due to attend a remembrance service at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery and Memorial, located about 60 miles northeast of Paris —  but he didn't go due to "logistical difficulties caused by the weather."

    Later, when asked why he didn't drive instead, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said: "President Trump did not want to cause that kind of unexpected disruption to the city and its people,"Associated Press (AP) reported

    Trump Pairs Rain

    "A car ride of two-and-a-half hours, each way, would have required closures to substantial portions of the Paris roadways for the President's motorcade, on short notice," Sanders said. 

    Read more'We have a Napoleon in the making': Lawmakers rain on Trump's military-parade idea.

    Ben Rhodes, the deputy national security adviser for strategic communications under President Barack Obama, said the excuse was implausible.

    "I helped plan all of President Obama's trips for 8 years,"he wrote on Twitter. "There is always a rain option. Always."

    Trump spent the time until his next engagement at the US Ambassador's house, but CNN reported the White House declined to say "how" he spent the empty hours.

    The graveyard and memorial Trump was scheduled to attend contains nearly 2,300 graves for soldiers who fought in the surrounding areas in the summer of 1918. 

    White House chief of staff John Kelly visited in the President's place. Kelly requires a smaller security detail and could therefore find alternate means of travel.

    Trump went to a different US military cemetery on the outskirts of Paris a day later, Sunday, AP said. 

    Trump's helicopter visit to the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea had to be scrapped in November 2017 due to bad weather which prevented a landing. 

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    NOW WATCH: Trump once won a lawsuit against the NFL — but the result was an embarrassment

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    climate change

    • Big oil spent only 1.3% of 2018 capital expenditure on green energy
    • European majors are making greater efforts than the US oil giants to invest in clean energy
    • Low carbon infrastructure seen as essential to combatting climate change

    Despite years of claims and commitments about clean investment and alleviating climate change, the world's largest oil companies have contributed just 1% of their spending budgets to green energy in 2018. 

    Companies like Royal Dutch Shell, Total, and BP, have all accelerated efforts into renewables and battery technology in recent years. But many efforts have been overshadowed by the oil industry's efforts to block or overturn environmental regulations.

    CDP, an environmental research charity that works with over 650 major institutional investors with $87 trillion in assets, claim that the world's top 24 publicly-listed companies spent just 1.3 percent of total budgets of $260 billion on low carbon energy in 2018.

    "This 1% figure pales in comparison with the amount of money Big Oil spends blocking climate initiatives and regulations, and invests in fossil-fuel projects that have no place in a well-below 2 degree Celsius world," Jane Martin at campaign group ShareAction, told Reuters. 

    CDP's research suggests that European oil majors have made greater strides than their US counterparts, and that 70% of the energy sector's renewables capacity came from European oil majors.

    "With less domestic pressure to diversify, US companies have not embraced renewables in the same way as their European peers," CDP said in a report.

    Norway's Equinor leads the way with plans to spend up to 20% of its budget on renewables by 2030, while European major Total has spent the most on low-carbon energies, around 4.3% of its budget, since 2010, according to the study. Shell plans to invest up to $2 billion each year in renewables and electric vehicles alongside a pledge in 2017 to halve the carbon footprint of the energy it sells by 2050. 

    cdp league table

    These efforts pale in comparison to the required need for drastic climate control measures.

    An explosive report last month from the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said "rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society" are required to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. 

    The report said: "Global net human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide would need to fall by about 45 percent from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching 'net zero' around 2050."

    Russian and US firms are investing the least, the study said, while China's energy powerhouse PetroChina doesn't even report emissions.

    SEE ALSO: The UN has warned that we only have 12 years to curb climate change

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    NOW WATCH: The economist that predicted the housing crisis warns the Fed is engaging in behavior that's almost always caused a recession

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    WASHINGTON, DC - AUGUST 29: Department of Justice Chief of Staff Matt Whitaker (R) participates in a round table event with the Joint Interagency Task Force - South (JIATF-S) foreign liaison officers at the Department of Justice Kennedy building August 29, 2018 in Washington, DC. Based in Key West, Florida, the JIATF-S is tasked with stopping the flow of illicit drugs with the cooperation of other agencies and international partners, including Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, France, Honduras, Mexico, the Netherlands, Panama, Peru, Spain, Trinidad and Tobago and the United Kingdom. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

    • Attorney General Jeff Sessions was pushed out of his position by President Donald Trump this week, and his chief of staff, Matthew Whitaker, was appointed as acting AG.
    • Whitaker, a former US Attorney from Iowa, has been involved in a number of controversies throughout his career as a conservative commentator and failed US Senate candidate. 
    • He's argued that all federal judges should be Christians, that the Mueller probe is a "witch hunt," and was on the board of a fraudulent marketing firm that was shut down by the FTC and is now being investigated by the FBI. 

    The Department of Justice has been mired in controversy this week, as Attorney General Jeff Sessions was pushed out of his position by President Donald Trump, and his chief of staff, Matthew Whitaker, appointed as acting AG.

    Not only do multiple legal and constitutional scholars argue that Whitaker's appointment to acting AG is unconstitutional because he was not confirmed to his current position by the US Senate, but commentators and state attorneys general have accused him of being unfit for the position.

    The Washington Post reported Thursday that Whitaker did not plan to recuse himself from overseeing special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into Russian interference and possible crimes on the part of the 2016 Trump campaign–and would block Mueller from subpoenaing the President. 

    Whitaker has frequently undermined the legitimacy and validity of the Mueller probe in the media, echoing Trump's own talking points that the probe is a "witch hunt" investigating non-existent impropriety by the Trump campaign. 

    Whitaker served was appointed US Attorney for the Southern District of Iowa at the age of 39, and served in that role from 2004 to 2009.

    After his tenure as a US Attorney, Whitaker became a regular conservative commentator on political and legal issues for outlets like USA Today and the Washington Examiner. In 2014, he unsuccessfully in Iowa's Republican primary for U.S. Senate. He was appointed as Sessions' chief of staff in September 2017.

    Whitaker was not a widely-known figure before last week, but since his appointment as acting AG, some of his more controversial actions and statements have since resurfaced. He once said he believed federal judges should be Christians, has repeatedly disparaged the Mueller probe, and served on the board of a marketing firm that scammed its customers out of $26 million and was shut down by the FTC.

    Here's a full timeline of Whitaker's controversial political past: 

    In 2014, Whitaker said one of the worst Supreme Court decisions was Marbury v. Madison, the landmark 1803 case that established the principle of judicial review, allowing the Supreme Court to rule on the constitutionality of legislation.

    "This is lunacy. For any lawyer — certainly for one now at the helm of the Justice Department — to disagree with Marbury is like a physicist denouncing the laws of gravity," wrote Washington Post editorial page editor Ruth Marcus of Whitaker's comments.

    "Decided in 1803, at the dawn of the new republic, Marbury v. Madison is the foundational case of American constitutional law," Marcus continued.

    "It represents Chief Justice John Marshall’s declaration that the Supreme Court possesses the ultimate power to interpret the Constitution and determine the legitimacy of acts of Congress."

    Source:Washington Post

    While running in Iowa's 2014 Republican primary for U.S. Senate, Whitaker said he believed it was "very important" for federal judges to be "people of faith" and have a "Biblical worldview."

    “What I know is that as long as they have that worldview, that they’ll be a good judge. And if they have a secular worldview, that ‘this is all we have here on Earth’, then I’m going to be very concerned about how they judge.”

    In a statement to Business Insider, the Freedom From Religion Foundation accused Whitaker of being an "extreme Christian nationalist." 

    "What would a biblical view of justice look like? Capital punishment for such non-crimes as worshipping gods other than the Judeo-Christian god, blasphemy, Sabbath-breaking, disobeying a parent, a woman who isn’t a virgin on her wedding night, or witchcraft," they added. 

    "Whitaker has joked that he prefers New Testament justice to 'Levitical' justice, but has apparently forgotten that Jesus supposedly said, in the Beatitudes no less, that he came to fulfill the law of the prophets, not to abolish it," they added. 

    Sources: The Guardian, Foundation For Freedom From Religion

    In a 2013 candidate forum, Whitaker said states could overrule federal law such as Obamacare, "if they had the political courage."

    "As a principle, it has been turned down by the courts and our federal government has not recognized it," Whitaker said.

    "Now we need to remember that the states set up the federal government and not vice versa. And so the question is, do we have the political courage in the state of Iowa or some other state to nullify Obamacare and pay the consequences for that?"


    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    the office toby henderson

    • When you're worried about how you're doing, the idea of being normal, or on par with the average, can be appealing.
    • However, it can be hard to gauge what the average actually is. And if you compare yourself to an unrealistic model for "normal," that can lead to feelings of inadequacy.
    • Here are the statistical averages for everything from physical health and imposter syndrome to overall happiness.


    Everyone wants to be the best at something. But for the most part, what many people really want is to be "normal," or at least something close to it. That's especially true if you feel that there's some area of your life that's lacking.

    Whether that's wealth, health, or general happiness, there's comfort in knowing that you actually aren't struggling more than most, and that you are, in fact, average.

    However, it can be difficult to tell how you're doing in relation to everyone else when "normal" is edited and distributed through the rose-colored filters of social media.

    To help you get a sense for the unedited reality, here are seven areas where you're probably utterly average:

    SEE ALSO: My 15-minute daily ritual to be more productive had an unexpected consequence that was even more valuable

    1. You're not getting as much exercise as you should

    Health and nutrition are major issues in the U.S. If you aren't sure you're getting enough exercise, you're likely in the majority. Only about one in three adults gets the recommended amount of physical activity every week, and less than 5% get a half hour of exercise every day, according to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

    The HHS also found that most Americans have trouble sticking to recommended nutritional rules — 90% of Americans consume more sodium than the CDC recommends for a healthy diet.

    2. You're dealing with imposter syndrome at work

    If you're dealing with imposter syndrome at work, you're not the only one. In fact, the International Journal of Behavioral Science estimated that 70% of people at some point deal with the phenomenon, which it describes as possessing "intense feelings that [your] achievements are undeserved."

    If you're afraid that you aren't as smart as other people think you are, that's probably a good sign. A Cornell University study confirmed what has long been suspected, since Charles Darwin theorized in 1871 that "ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge." In other words, people who are actually incompetent are often painfully unaware of that fact, and "grossly overestimate" their abilities compared to their peers.

    3. Your net worth is less than six figures

    In 2016, the average net worth (assets minus debt) for families under the age of 35 was about $76,000, according to the Federal Reserve.

    However, it's important to note that median net worth in that demographic — which was about $11,000 that year — is a more useful figure since it factors out the small percentage of Americans whose wealth falls way outside of "normal" American earnings.


    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Halle Berry and Jared Goff

    • The Los Angeles Rams withstood a last-minute comeback attempt from Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks for a 36-31 win Sunday night.
    • Quarterback Jared Goff threw for 318 yards and two touchdowns in the win, but he made headlines for calling an audible named for actress Halle Berry early in the first quarter.
    • Berry tweeted at Goff and the Rams when she heard the play call, and the quarterback was very excited that he had caught the Academy Award winner's attention.
    • He responded to Berry's tweet with the news that the audible is his "favorite play ever." 

    The Los Angeles Rams held off a last-minute comeback attempt from Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks for a 36-31 win at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Sunday night, and while quarterback Jared Goff threw for 318 yards and two touchdowns in the win, it wasn't his solid play that made headlines after the game.

    Goff called for an audible named for Halle Berry early in the first quarter, and the actress took notice.

    The Academy Award winner quoted a video of the play on Twitter and asked Goff and the Rams for an explanation.

    According to a report from ESPN's Lindsey Thiry, Goff "became a giddy kid" when he learned that Berry had heard the audible and reached out to him on social media.

    "Wait, hold on, are you serious?" Goff said. "She heard it!"

    He then found the post on Twitter and proceeded to show teammates and coaches in the locker room.

    "It's so funny," Goff said. "The thing is, when [Los Angeles head coach McVay] called it, I was like, 'It's so quiet right now, this is going to get on TV.'"

    The third-year quarterback responded to Berry's tweet in a way that many perceived as flirting.

    His teammates refused to allow the comment to fly under the radar. Star running back Todd Gurley gave Goff a hard time for the reply: 

    Lineman Andrew Whitworth couldn't come up with words to describe the move:

    McVay was rather shy about sharing why the audible was named for Berry, because, as Thiry reports, an explanation would likely reveal the play's design. He did, however, insist that the team intended for the name to be "complimentary."

    Goff wound up throwing an eight-yard pass to tight end Tyler Higbee on the play.  

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    Ryanair Planes.JPG

    • Ryanair passengers experienced a surprise on Thursday when their flight was grounded and plane impounded in France because of an unpaid debt by Ryanair that left them delayed for up to five hours. 
    • reports the French civil aviation authority grounded the flight at Bordeaux-Mérignac Airport as "a last resort" after a dispute over an unpaid debt of subsidies reached a sum of €525,000, or $590,000 dollars. 
    • The Independent reports the plane was impounded, and the passengers were delayed up to five hours at the Bordeaux-Mérignac Airport.
    • The French civil aviation authority told, "It is unfortunate that the state had to take such action, which led to the inevitable inconvenience of the 149 passengers on board the immobilized plane."  

    Ryanair passengers experienced a surprise on Thursday when their flight was grounded and plane impounded in France due to an unpaid debt by Ryanair that left them delayed for up to five hours, multiple sources have reported. 

    According to The Independent, Ryanair flight 1783, a Boeing 737, was scheduled to fly from Bordeaux-Mérignac Airport in France to the city of Stansted in the United Kingdom at 6 p.m. on Thursday with 149 passengers onboard. 

    But that did not end up happening. UPI reports Ryanair passengers, who had already gone through passport control and security, were about to pass through the tarmac to board the plane when they were told to turn around and head back to the gate. reports the French civil aviation authority grounded the flight at Bordeaux-Mérignac Airport as "a last resort" after a dispute over an unpaid debt of subsidies reached the sum of €525,00o, or $590,000 dollars. 

    Read More:Ryanair fires 6 crew members after a staged photo went viral of them sleeping on the airport floor

    According to, the dispute of subsidies had to do with Ryanair's use of Angoulême Airport in France in 2008 and 2009 and payments made to the airline, which were later ruled to be illegal by the European Commission in Brussels.

    CNN reports a 2015 European Commission statement said, "France must now recover the incompatible aid from the companies that received it in order to restore the level playing field."

    UPI reports the payments were deemed illegal because "they gave Ryanair an unfair economic advantage."

    Ryanair did not respond to Business Insider's request for comment. 

    The Independent reports the plane was impounded, and the passengers were delayed up to five hours at the Bordeaux-Mérignac Airport. After being given €5 vouchers by Ryanair, the passengers were forced to take a later flight to Stansted that arrived at 11:30 p.m. reports the French civil aviation authority said, "It is unfortunate that the state had to take such action, which led to the inevitable inconvenience of the 149 passengers on board the immobilized plane."  


    SEE ALSO: A Ryanair passenger filmed a baggage handler carelessly throwing luggage to the ground

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    General Electric GE trading floor nyse

    • General Electric CEO Larry Culp said Monday he will cut the company's leverage by selling assets.
    • The company recently slashed its dividend to a penny in order to free up cash.
    • JPMorgan on Friday dropped its price target for GE to $6, the lowest on Wall Street, citing liquidity problems.
    • Watch General Electric trade live.

    General Electric plunged as much as 10% Monday — to a record low of $7.72 a share — after CEO Larry Culp said he feels the "urgency" to cut the company's leverage and will do so by selling assets.

    "We have no higher priority right now than bringing those leverage levels down," Culp said in an interview with CNBC.

    "I think we've got plenty of opportunities through asset sales to do that. In the last six weeks, marks my sixth week on the job, I've heard from a lot of people across our markets, people who have interest in GE assets. And I think that's confirmation that we have quality franchises and frankly that we have options."

    Culp was appointed as GE's new CEO on October 1. Initially, shares rallied by more than 20% after his promotion as investors looked past the company's lagging power business, price-cost pressures compounded by US-China tariffs, and behind-schedule deliveries of its LEAP engine.

    But they have been under pressure recently after the conglomerate reported disappointing quarterly results and  slashed its dividend to a penny — in order to retain an extra of $3.9 billion cash per year.

    On Friday, JPMorgan analyst Stephen Tusa cut his price target to $6, the lowest on Wall Street, saying his worst-case scenario will see GE with $100 billion in liabilities and zero enterprise free cash flow after the dividend cut.

    Questions about GE's liquidity are understandable, Culp said Monday. But he added that GE has a good foundation in terms of deleveraging, as it has $20 billion of cash on hand from asset sales and has used only $2 billion of its $40 billion of bank lines.

    Culp gave three possible ways to free up cash: an initial public offering for GE's health-care business, the sale of its transportation business, and its coming exit from Baker Hughes' oilfield services business. However, Culp said he will not rush the process of deleveraging, and that GE "has no plans for an equity raise."

    Shares were down 54% this year.

    Now read:


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    NOW WATCH: There's so much CO2 in the atmosphere that planting trees can no longer save us

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    tim cook

    • Apple shares are sliding on Monday after a series of bad data points for iPhone demand.
    • JP Morgan analysts said that iPhone unit sales could decline on an annual basis in both 2018 and 2019. 
    • TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo cut his forecast for iPhone XR shipments from 100 million to 70 million.
    • Apple said earlier this month that it will no longer provide iPhone sales figures to investors. 

    Apple is down more than 4% on Monday after a slew of analyst reports suggested that iPhone unit sales could drop year-over-year as soon as the first quarter of 2019. 

    These reports come shortly after Apple announced that it would no longer provide iPhone unit sales, one of the key signals that analysts use to evaluate Apple's business. Apple also provided lukewarm guideance for the all-important holiday quarter. 

    The driver of the projected sales slump is that Apple's new $749 phone, the lower-end iPhone XR, might not be the hot seller that Apple had hoped, and the company may be cutting orders for the device. Nikkei reported earlier this month that Foxconn had cut as many as 15 production lines for the device. 

    Now, that's being backed up by new reports by analysts from JP Morgan and TF International Securities. 

    "We now forecast modest y/y declines in iPhone shipments for both calendar 2018 and 2019 on account of a weaker macro backdrop in emerging market," Samik Chatterjee and other JP Morgan analysts wrote in a note distributed to clients on Monday, blaming the weak iPhone shipments on weak consumer confidence in emerging markets. 

    "Led by the softer backdrop in the [emerging markets], the better than expected response to the iPhone XS and the iPhone XS MAX (the higher-end phones) is unable to entirely offset the more tepid than expected consumer response to iPhone XR (launched recently)," the analysts continued, downgrading their price target for Apple stock to $266 from $270.

    TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo had similar observations in a note released on Monday. 

    "We have reduced our iPhone XR shipment estimation from 100mn units to 70mn during the new product lifecycle, Kuo wrote, citing reduced Chinese consumer confidence stemming from the trade war, high prices, and competition from Huawei. However, Apple's less expensive older phones may get a sales boost from the weak iPhone XR. 

    "The legacy iPhone models forecast is likely to increase significantly thanks to more affordable prices; the total iPhone shipments in 1Q19 are likely to see a YoY decline," Kuo continued, citing Career and Nissha Printing as two suppliers that might be affected by Apple's cuts. 

    Another data point potentially contributing to Apple's slide: Lumentum, a key supplier for parts that power facial recognition systems, said that a large customer had cut its orders by 30% — and Apple is its top customer. 

    These data points come as fears that there is weak demand for Apple's products in emerging markets including China, partly driven by a strong dollar making iPhones more expensive. 

    The slide may also reflect fears that Apple knows that iPhone unit sales are going to go negative in the short-term, which is why it decided to stop reporting unit sales. Apple said that it prefered to focus on the company's transition to a services company, with regular recurring revenue. 

    "We believe these challenges are largely cyclical and investors should pay greater attention to the transformation to services, where Apple was able to report quarterly record revenue of $10 bn in [the most recent quarter] despite a regulatory challenge in China," the JP Morgan analysts write. 

    Apple CEO Tim Cook was directly asked about this possibility during Apple's most recent conference call. 

    "Some people may fear that this now means that the iPhone units are going to start going negative year over year because it's easier to talk about great things and not show the details of things that aren't so great," Citi analyst Jim Suva said during the conference call. 

    Apple CEO Tim Cook responded: 

    "Jim, let me just add a couple things to that for color. Our installed base is growing at double digit, and that's probably a much more significant metric for us from an ecosystem point of view and the customer loyalty, et cetera. The second thing is this is a little bit like if you go to the market and you push your cart up to the cashier and she says, or he says how many units you have in there? It doesn't matter a lot how many units there are in there in terms of the overall value of what's in the cart."

    Apple stock is down over 10% since it said it would no longer disclose hardware unit sales on November 1 — and these reports suggest that it may be a while before the company has another unit growth spurt. 

    SEE ALSO: These 2 charts reveal a growing problem for Apple in China — searches for the new iPhones 'fell off a cliff' in October

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    orlando bloom

    Three major wildfires continue to blaze through California. And two of them, the The Woolsey and Hill fires, surround Los Angeles and are burning through Malibu.

    The damage is already devastating. 29 people have been killed in the Camp Fire, further north in the state, and the property damage will amount to billions of dollars once everything has been accounted for.

    A number of celebrities living in the Los Angeles and Malibu areas have evacuated their homes, including Miley Cyrus and members of the Kardashian family. Many of them don't know if they lost their homes in the fires.

    But some celebrities — including Orlando Bloom, Gerard Butler, and Lady Gaga — have had their homes completely or partially burned to the ground. Many of them had only been living in those houses for just a few years before losing them.

    Here are seven celebrity homes destroyed by the fire — and what they looked like before.

    Gerard Butler bought his Point Dume house in May 2016.

    Split in two compounds, the home cost him $6.45.

    On Sunday, he showed its skeletal remains.

    Butler returned to his home Sunday after evacuating it earlier. He found it completely destroyed, and posted a photo of the devastation on Instagram.

    "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" star Camille Grammer also has a home in Malibu.

    She's put the home on and off the market since 2012.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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