TOP 5 STOCKS TO WATCHOUT: –
1. APPLE: – Apple Inc. gets its turn this week to mount a courtroom defense against Epic Games Inc.’s antitrust claims, preparing to bring in its most powerful spokesman: Tim Cook.
Mr. Cook, a guarded chief executive who is used to carefully orchestrated public appearances, is set to testify in a trial that, regardless of the verdict, could prove to be one of the most consequential for the iPhone maker as it faces accusations it denies of abusing its market power.
Approaching the 10th anniversary of taking over as chief executive, Mr. Cook is no stranger to high-profile, make-or-break moments for Apple. A polished public speaker, he has twice testified before Congress but never appeared on a witness stand in a trial where his words could sway a judge for or against the company.
2. AMAZON: –
Amazon.com Inc. is establishing a program focused on improving the health and wellness of its hourly warehouse staffers, after years of criticism over worker safety at its depots and a pledge by Chief Executive Jeff Bezos to offer a better vision for employees.
The company said Monday that its new program, called WorkingWell, aims to better educate some of its employees on how to avoid workplace injuries and improve mental health on the job. The online retailer began testing parts of the program two years ago and plans to expand it to 1,000 facilities by the end of the year, said Heather MacDougall, vice president of world-wide workplace health and safety at Amazon. The company said it aims to cut recordable incidents in half by 2025. The program has been in 350 sites in North America and Europe.
3. MASTER CARD: – A recent survey conducted by Mastercard has found that 94% of people in the Asia-Pacific region have shifted towards considering the use of emerging payment methods that includes the use of cryptocurrency.
As the range of payment methods expands, the number of people who are willing to try alternative payment methods is also broadening. The Mastercard survey not only indicates the high number of people who were open to trying at least one of the most common emerging payment methods, but also revealed that 69% of Asia-Pacific respondents in the survey said that they would likely use cash less frequently in the coming year.
4. MICROSOFT: – Microsoft Corp. board members decided that Bill Gates needed to step down from its board in 2020 as they pursued an investigation into the billionaire’s prior romantic relationship with a female Microsoft employee that was deemed inappropriate, people familiar with the matter said.
Members of the board tasked with the matter hired a law firm to conduct an investigation in late 2019 after a Microsoft engineer alleged in a letter that she had a sexual relationship over years with Mr. Gates, the people said.
During the probe, some board members decided it was no longer suitable for Mr. Gates to sit as a director at the software company he started and led for decades, the people said. Mr. Gates resigned before the board’s investigation was completed and before the full board could make a formal decision on the matter, another person familiar with the matter said.
5. GOOGLE: – Sridhar Ramaswamy is CEO of Neeva, an ads-free search engine he helped found after running Google’s ads and commerce business. Ramaswamy spent seventeen years inside Google, and eventually grew disillusioned with its ad business. Now, he’s trying to build the solution with $77.5 million in funding. In this conversation, we discuss his evolving view on advertising, what decoupling search from ads allows from a product standpoint, and how the current antitrust environment is opening Google up to competition.