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28 Sep 2021

1.GOOGLE:  Australia’s antitrust watchdog said it wants the power to curb Google’s use of internet data to sell targeted ads, saying the Big Tech firm dominated the market to the point of harming publishers, advertisers and consumers.

The comments, in a report published Tuesday, set up another possible showdown between Australia and Google months after the Alphabet  Inc unit vowed to pull core services from the country over a new content licensing law.

It may also spur along an anti-monopoly lawsuit reportedly being prepared by the U.S. justice department accusing Google of using its market muscle to hobble advertising rivals. European regulators are also scrutinising Google’s advertising business.

In its “ad tech” report, which still must be considered by the government, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said Google’s dominance of online advertising was so entrenched that existing laws were insufficient to rein in any anticompetitive behaviour.

More than 90% of clicks on advertisements that passed through Australia’s “ad tech” supply chain went through at least one Google-owned service in 2020, the regulator said.

2.GENERAL MOTORS:-General Motors  supports the emission reduction goals in the proposed rewrite of vehicle standards through 2026 issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last month, according to written comments the automaker filed with the EPA on Monday.

GM called the EPA’s proposal “historically stringent” and said the Biden administration should ensure automakers in compliance with EPA rules not be subject to civil penalties in the parallel National Highway Traffic Safety Administration fuel economy program “that may arise from the geographic location of its supply chain.”

3.CITI GROUP- Citigroup Inc  has named former U.S. Treasury official Brent McIntosh as its new general counsel and corporate secretary, Chief Executive Officer Jane Fraser wrote in a memo to employees on Monday.

McIntosh, who will succeed Rohan Weerasinghe, will join the bank on Oct. 25. Weerasinghe, retiring after nearly a decade with the bank, will stay on through the end of the year.

The incoming general counsel previously held the role of under secretary for international affairs at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, where he was crucial in designing policies to combat the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, the memo said.

McIntosh has also held senior roles at the White House and the U.S. Department of Justice, according to the memo. Prior to joining the Treasury, he was a partner at law firm Sullivan & Cromwell.

4.ADOBE:Adobe  took a hit of over 4% post-earnings, as the top- and bottom-line beats failed to impress.

On the whole, Adobe clocked in a great quarter, but investors were expecting more. Going into the quarterly reveal, shares had enjoyed quite the run, and potentially unreasonable expectations.While Adobe stock is now off over 11.6% from its all-time high, it’s still up over 24% year-to-date.

You would have to do some digging to find hair on Adobe’s third-quarter results, which weren’t as bad as the post-earnings reaction suggested. The outlook was also pretty upbeat, but that’s the danger of playing hot stocks going into earnings. The expectations bar got too high, and inevitably, Adobe ended up stumbling.

The solid quarterly beat was thanks mainly to the Digital Experience segment, which should continue to garner momentum over the next 18 months, as the digital transformation trend continues.

Revenues were up around 22% year-over-year, with $3.11 in per-share earnings, beating the Street consensus by a dime. Operating margins also held strong. So, what was the problem?

Simply put, investors were expecting a more prominent beat, especially on the top line.

The name now finds itself trading at around 19.1 times sales, and 49.9 times trailing earnings. For that type of valuation, not only do investors demand strength, they demand a bit of a surprise to the upside.

5. NETFLIX: Netflix Inc  is not looking to buy a movie theater chain, Co-Chief Executive Ted Sarandos said on Monday, a rejection of speculation that swirled after the world’s largest streaming service bought two cinemas.

The company owns one theater in New York, purchased in 2019, and one in Los Angeles, which it bought in 2020. Netflix uses the cinemas to hold movie premieres and to showcase some of its original films.

Asked at Vox Media’s Code Conference if Netflix might next buy a theater chain, Sarandos said “no.”

He also said he expected theaters to survive the rise of at-home streaming but that audiences would make fewer trips to their local cinema when they can watch so much programming at home.

“I think (moviegoing) will be less frequent, maybe more expensive,” he said. “Using it as an event to get out of the house, people are still going to be looking for that.”

Sarandos also said that the recently released Korean horror series “Squid Game” was on its way to becoming Netflix’s biggest non-English title so far and could turn into its most popular show yet around the world.

“We did not see that coming, in terms of its global popularity,” Sarandos said.