Archive for February, 2017

YouTube Users Now Watch 1 Billion Hours Per Day, Set To Surpass US TV Viewership

Courtesy of Zero Hedge

In a dramatic confirmation of the relentless growth of online video, at the expense of the agonizing, slow death of conventional TV, YouTube said that its worldwide viewers are now watching more than 1 billion hours of videos a day, on pace to eclipse total US TV viewership over the next few years, a milestone facilitated by the Google aggressive embrace of artificial intelligence to recommend videos. By comparison, Americans watch 1.25 billion hours of live and recorded TV per day according to Nielsen, a figure that has been steadily dropping in recent years. Facebook and Netflix said in January 2016 that users watch 100 million hours and 116 million hours, respectively, of video daily on their platforms.

According to the WSJ, YouTube surpassed the "psychological" figure, which was far higher than previously reported, late last year. Indicatively, in 2012 when Google started building algorithms that tap user data to give each user personalized video lineups designed to keep them watching longer, users spent 100 million hours on its platform, a ten-fold increase in under five years, growing at a pace of roughly 200 million hours per year. Of course, what makes YouTube so unique, is that a vast majority of the content is crowdsourced: feeding the AI recommendations is an unmatched collection of content: 400 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube each minute, or 65 years of video a day.

What is surprising is that despite YouTube's massive size, it remains unclear if it profitable. Google's parent Alphabet doesn’t disclose YouTube’s performance, but people familiar with its financials said it took in about $4 billion in revenue in 2014 and roughly broke even. Like most of its social network competitors, YouTube makes most of its money on running ads before videos but it also spends big on technology and rights to content, including deals with TV networks for a planned web-TV service. When asked about profits last year, YouTube Chief Executive Susan Wojcicki said, “Growth is the priority.”

Meanwhile, in a near-monopolistic synergy, YouTube benefits from the enormous reach of Google, which handles about 93% of internet searches, according to market researcher StatCounter. Google embeds YouTube videos in search results and pre-installs the YouTube app


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“‘There Are No Moderate Rebels’ – Tulsi Gabbard Destroys The Deep State’s Syria Narrative

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Via Mike Krieger of Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

Tulsi Gabbard has continued to impress ever since she came on the national scene last year with her courageous and very public support for Bernie Sanders in the rigged Democratic primary.

Most recently, she continued to demonstrate her knowledge of geopolitics and willingness to stand up to America’s unelected government, aka the Deep State, in a recent interview with CNN’s Jake Taper.

Note, the clip is about a month old, but important to watch if you haven’t. 

If the Democrats have any hope of becoming a decent opposition party which not only resists the worst of Trump, but also rejects the perverted neoliberal/Deep State ideology currently embraced by establishment Dems, Tulsi Gabbard will have to play a key role.

As I highlighted in last February’s post, It’s Not Just the GOP – The Democratic Party is Also Imploding:

A rising star within the Democratic ranks, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii, cut herself off from the party’s establishment by resigning from her post as vice-chairman of the Democratic National Committee and endorsing Bernie Sanders for president.

Her position with the DNC required her to stay neutral in the primaries, but she said that “the stakes are too high.” She announced her decision on Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” and made a video where she explained her reasoning.

Gabbard, an Iraq war veteran, said she knows the cost of war firsthand. “I know how important it is that our commander-in-chief has the sound judgment required to know when to use America’s military power—and when not to use that power.”

The importance of this move cannot be understated. In no uncertain terms, this gesture publicly exposes the weakness of the “Clinton brand.” She clearly isn’t afraid of Hillary or of any repercussions from the Democratic Party elite, a fact that is underscored by the fact she came out with her endorsement after he got pummeled in South Carolina.

But let’s take a step back and think about this in the even bigger picture. You don’t get to Congress by being a political imbecile. On the surface, this move looks like career suicide, particularly since Hillary is probably about to clinch the nomination. Recall, Rep. Gabbard didn’t merely endorse Sanders after a bruising loss in South Carolina, she stepped down from her official


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Trump Speech Post-Mortem – From Rebellion To Pouting Pelosi: “We Bleed The Same Blood”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Just under 70 minutes, 4,825 words, and the message was clear – the speech was about “will” and “Americans”

Additionally “Obamacare” was mentioned 5 times, “Historic” was mentioned 3 times, and “massive” twice.

..

I am here tonight to deliver a message of unity and strength, and it is a message deeply delivered from my heart. #JointAddress

— President Trump (@POTUS) March 1, 2017

President Trump got a warm welcome…

An extended standing ovation for the president as he takes his place on the rostrum. pic.twitter.com/lxGDA2m3wK

— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) March 1, 2017

To start with, for some reason Nancy Pelosi thought that Democratic women wearing white would make a statement…

Tonight, our Democratic #WomenWearWhite in support of women’s rights — in spite of a @POTUS who doesn’t! pic.twitter.com/kKJpfV5iUE

— Nancy Pelosi (@NancyPelosi) February 28, 2017

President Trump did not wear a red tie!!!

THE TIE PIVOT HAS ARRIVED!#JointSession pic.twitter.com/2UqLdLyWLo

— The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) March 1, 2017

.@POTUS: “A new chapter of American Greatness is now beginning. A new national pride is sweeping across our Nation.” https://t.co/dAlG7hq9Sd pic.twitter.com/oEN3rESfts

— Fox News (@FoxNews) March 1, 2017

Trump began by referring to his election as a “rebellion” against “mistakes of recent decades”

Then, in 2016, the earth shifted beneath our feet. The rebellion started as a quiet protest, spoken by families of all colors and creeds -– families who just wanted a fair shot for their children, and a fair hearing for their concerns.

But then the quiet voices became a loud chorus — as thousands of citizens now spoke out together, from cities small and large, all across our country.

Finally, the chorus became an earthquake – and the people turned out by the tens of millions, and they were all united by one very simple, but crucial demand, that America must put its own citizens first … because only then, can we truly MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN.

Trump then reminded Congress of his market gains…

Since my election,


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Snap vs Facebook vs Twitter Cheatsheet

 

Snap vs Facebook vs Twitter Cheatsheet

Courtesy of 

Cool infographic via MediaKix, you may click to embiggen:





Dallas Police Pension ‘Wins’ $2mm Settlement From Real Estate Fund That Lost Them Roughly $320mm

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

In the first bit of good news to surface for the Dallas Police and Fire Pension (DPFP) in quite some time, the Dallas News is reporting the pension board has “won” a $2 million settlement against their former real estate fund advisor, CDK Realty Advisors.  Of course, the settlement falls slightly short of the $320mm in losses allegedly caused by CDK, but a win’s a win, right?

Meanwhile, city officials who complain they had little control over the fund’s activities but are now being forced to find a way to bail it out, had mixed reactions to the settlement.

“We need every dime possible coming into the fund, especially from those that played a role in its downfall,” Mayor Mike Rawlings said in a statement. “This settlement appears to be a small step in the right direction, though I still hope to see more transparency and details about the scope of the alleged wrongdoing by CDK.”

Lee Kleinman, a City Council member and former member of the fund’s board, said he was “shocked CDK got off the hook for a mere $2 million considering the amount of fees they bilked out of the system over the past decade.”

But others highlighted the importance of getting CDK’s cooperation. “We could have hammered these guys a lot harder perhaps” by taking the matter to trial, said Philip Kingston, another city councilman who serves on the fund’s board. “But getting their cooperation to chase down other potential sources of recovery I think was really important.”

For those who missed it, here is some background on how CDK Realty same to find themselves to be the target of an FBI raid in April 2016 related to their management of real estate investments on behalf of the DPFP…turns out they may have had some issues marking their real estate portfolio to market (see “Dallas Cops’ Pension Fund Nears Insolvency In Wake Of Shady Real Estate Deals, FBI Raid“).

To provide a little background, per the Dallas Morning News, Richard Tettamant served as the DPFP’s administrator for a couple of decades right up until he was forced out in June 2014.  Starting in 2005, Tettamant oversaw a plan to “diversify” the pension into “hard assets” and away from


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President Trump’s Address To Congress: Key Highlights And Full Text

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

While the full Trump speech transcript is below, for those curious only in the key economic/trade excerpt, it is laid out below:

My economic team is developing historic tax reform that will reduce the tax rate on our companies so they can compete and thrive anywhere and with anyone. At the same time, we will provide massive tax relief for the middle class. We must create a level playing field for American companies and workers.

Currently, when we ship products out of America, many other countries make us pay very high tariffs and taxes — but when foreign companies ship their products into America, we charge them almost nothing. I just met with officials and workers from a great American company, Harley-Davidson. In fact, they proudly displayed five of their magnificent motorcycles, made in the USA, on the front lawn of the White House.

At our meeting, I asked them, how are you doing, how is business? They said that it’s good. I asked them further how they are doing with other countries, mainly international sales. They told me — without even complaining because they have been mistreated for so long that they have become used to it — that it is very hard to do business with other countries because they tax our goods at such a high rate. They said that in one case another country taxed their motorcycles at 100 percent.

They weren’t even asking for change. But I am. I believe strongly in free trade but it also has to be FAIR TRADE.

While this is not an explicit mention of BAT, some read into the excerpt above as validation of border adjustability.

Next, here is Trump on Obamacare:

Obamacare is collapsing –- and we must act decisively to protect all Americans. Action is not a choice –- it is a necessity. So I am calling on all Democrats and Republicans in the Congress to work with us to save Americans from this imploding Obamacare disaster.

Here are the principles that should guide the Congress as we move to create a better healthcare system for all Americans:

First, we should ensure that Americans with pre-existing conditions have access to coverage, and that we


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How We Got Here In One Sentence

Courtesy of John Rubino.

In every annual budget debate since the 1980s, one side figures out that the way to get what it wants – which is higher spending – is to frame the request in a particular, ingenious way: We have to borrow and spend way more now if we want to borrow and spend way less later. History has of course proven this argument to be idiotic, but because it moves the pain of living within our means into the indefinite future, it always manages to attract enough votes to win the day.

The following article, published today by a major news outlet, spells it out in one sentence, in the title no less:

Why federal debt may have to explode before it shrinks

(CBS) – On Tuesday night, President Donald Trump will address a joint session of Congress for the first time. For a country still suffering from bitter political divisions after a contentious election, it’s doubtful his speech will heal still-raw emotions. Especially since Mr. Trump has hinted that he’ll discuss his budget plan, including a big statement on infrastructure spending and sharp cuts to federal agencies.

No matter what you think of President Trump — whether you see him as a buffoon, a wannabe despot or the savior who’ll finally Make America Great Again — here’s one big reason you should have some sympathy for him: He faces the worst fiscal outlook of any recent president.

He has taken office with the national debt nearing $20 trillion and debt held by the public above $14 trillion. According to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB), debt is at a higher levels as a share of the economy than for any incoming president since Harry Truman in 1945 (chart below). Yet unlike Truman, who was handed an economy demobilizing from the fight against the Japan and Nazi Germany, the national debt is expected to continue to rise during Trump’s presidency and beyond.

Moreover, federal spending on entitlements and interest payments represents a larger share of the budget than under any other president, leaving Mr. Trump with far less room on the “discretionary” side of the budget. Adding a sense of urgency to all of this, three federal trust funds — covering highways, Social Security Disability and Medicare Hospital Insurance — are headed for insolvency over the


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“Time For Small-Thinking Is Over”: President Trump’s First Address To Congress – Live Feed

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

“It’s T-Day” as one trader put it this morning. President Trump will address a joint session of Congress tonight for the first time as president in a much anticipated speech in which he will tell lawmakers the “time for small thinking is over,” and “the time for trivial fights is behind us,” as he lays out his policy agenda.

The Guardian reports that in a contrast to Trump’s gloomy inauguration day “American carnage” speech, the mood this evening is expected to be lighter.

“My speech will be a message of optimism, hope, and love for the greatest country in history. I will lay out our agenda for a stronger, freer, and more prosperous America,” Trump said in an email to supporters this afternoon, calling on donations for his re-election.

But while the administration is touting it as optimistic, advisor Steve Bannon, seen as Trump’s most influential advisor, spoke this week at CPAC about the three “verticals” the Trump administration will focus on, and it’s a less positive affair: national security and sovereignty; economic nationalism; and “deconstruction of the administrative state”.

Bloomberg notes:

  • Trump to outline what he’ll pitch as benefits of more stringent immigration enforcement – it will “save billions of dollars and make our community safer for everyone
  • Will pitch what he’ll call a “historic tax reform” plan in development; promising “massive tax relief for the middle class”
  • Trump to say U.S. needs to learn lessons of the past on foreign policy and conflict; adding “only long-term solution for these humanitarian disasters is to create the conditions where displaced persons can safely return home and begin the long process of rebuilding”
  • In possible nod to Russia, which he has said U.S. should have friendlier ties with: “America is willing to find new friends and to forge new partnerships were shared interests align”
  • On Islamic State, to say will work with allies incl. in Muslim world to “extinguish” ISIS

Some key excerpts have been released (h/t @BradJaffy):

Excerpt 1:

The time for small thinking is over.

The time for trivial fights is behind us.

We just need the courage to share the dreams that fill our hearts.

Excerpt 2:

Think of the marvels we can achieve if we simply set free


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Trump Speech Excerpts Leaked: Few Details, Promises Of “Historic” Tax Reform, “Massive” Tax Cuts

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Yesterday we asked in lieu of actual details in today’s Trump speech, what adjective(s) would Trump pick to spark S&P and USDJPY momentum igniition algos, while overemphasizing his fiscal plan and deflecting from the lack of substance:

What adjective in Trump’s speech tomorrow will algos react most strongly to

— zerohedge (@zerohedge) February 28, 2017

The answer at first glance, according to a leaked draft of select speech excerpts, appears to be “historic” and “massive” as in “historic tax reform” and “massive tax relief for the middle class.” Alas, as so many traders have dreaded, there does not appear to be any actionable detail how Trump will achieve this “historic”, “massive” tax relief.

Among the other topics discussed are immigration laws, Obamacare (which Trump calls to repeal and replace), child care, promoting clean air and water, rebuilding military infrastructure, and of course, plain old rhetoric.

Here are the select excerpts from the speech which while they may lead to a kneejerk reaction higher in risk assets, will – absent elaboration – likely result in a disappointment market shortly thereafter:

My economic team is developing historic tax reform that will reduce the tax rate on our companies so they can compete and thrive anywhere and with anyone. At the same time, we will provide massive tax relief for the middle class.

* * *

By finally enforcing our immigration laws, we will raise wages, help the unemployed, save billions of dollars, and make our communities safer for everyone.

* * *

Tonight, I am also calling on this Congress to repeal and replace Obamacare with reforms that expand choice, increase access, lower costs, and at the same time provide better healthcare.

Mandating every American to buy government approved health insurance was never the right solution for America. The way to make health insurance available to everyone is to lower the cost of health insurance and that is what we will do.

* * *

My administration wants to work with members in both parties to make child care accessible and affordable, to help ensure new parents have paid family leave, to invest


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US Auto Dealers Forced To Rent First “Overflow Lots” In 37 Years Amid Inventory Glut

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Yesterday we noted that GM launched an aggressive incentive program in the month of February to clear out some of its pickup truck inventory.  In fact, incentives on the company’s Silverado were up 56% YoY to $6,996, while discounts on the Sierra were up 82% to $5,315 (see “GM Pickup Incentives Surge Over 80% As Auto Bubble Continues To Show Signs Of An Imminent Bust“). 

But apparently GM isn’t the only auto OEM who may have had to splurge on incentive spending in February to clear out inventory piling up on dealer lots.  Inventory days across the industry are up massively YoY and stood at 85 days at the beginning of February, up 22 days from January 1st and up 8 days compared to the same time last year.  As one Honda dealer told Bloomberg, the inventory pile up at his dealership has become so excessive that for the first time in 37 years of business he was forced to rent an overflow lot to park unsold cars in February.

For the first time in his 37 years working at New Jersey car dealerships, Larry Kull had to rent extra space to store unsold new Honda vehicles — one of the latest signs that the record U.S. auto market is cooling.

Across dealer lots in America, inventory is piling up as automakers produce more cars than are being bought. Dealers had about 85 days worth of cars and trucks on hand at the beginning of February — about 22 days more than at the beginning of 2017 and eight days more than a year earlier, according to Automotive News Data Center.

“The sales are good, I just have more product on the ground than I’ve had before,” said Kull, who has about 60 days of passenger cars including Civic compacts and Accord sedans stocked at an office parking lot down the road from his Honda store in Marlton, New Jersey. He prefers to have just 45 days worth of cars on hand.

Meanwhile, this news comes just as wall street prepares to digest new car sales data tomorrow.  Overall sales for February are expected to be down slightly while GM is expected to perform ‘best’  among the D3 on their massive incentive spending (though


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Zero Hedge

For The First Time Since The Crisis, Companies Spent More On Buybacks And Dividends Than They Earned...

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

It will hardly come as a surprise to many, but according to the latest cash flow analysis from Goldman Sachs, 2018 was a record year for S&P 500 cash spending: not only did aggregate spending on capex, R&D, cash acquisitions, dividends, and share repurchases rose by 25% to $2.8 trillion, "the fastest year/year growth in 30 years"...

...



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Phil's Favorites

Fed's Balance Sheet Spikes by $253 Billion, Now Topping $4 Trillion

Courtesy of Pam Martens

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: October 18, 2019 ~

Shhh! Don’t tell Congress that the Federal Reserve is back to electronically creating money out of thin air to throw at a liquidity problem (of an, as yet, undetermined origin) on Wall Street. And be sure not to mention that the Fed’s balance sheet has shot up in a period of just 42 days by $253 billion. And, of course, don’t remind Congress that before the last Wall Street crisis was over the Fed had secretly, with no oversight from Congress, piled up ...



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Insider Scoop

48 Biggest Movers From Yesterday

Courtesy of Benzinga

Gainers
  • Hepion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: HEPA) shares climbed 43.2% to close at $3.58 on Thursday after the company announced the publication of a research article, "A Pan-Cyclophilin Inhibitor, CRV431, Decreases Fibrosis and Tumor Development in Chronic Liver Disease Models," in the peer-reviewed Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.
  • Synthesis Energy Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: SES) rose 26.9% to close at $9.20 after surging 12.24% on Wednesday.
  • Assembly Biosciences, Inc...


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Kimble Charting Solutions

Bank Index Breakout? Stock Market Bulls Sure Hope So

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

One of the most important sectors of the stock market is the banking industry and bank stocks.

When the banks are healthy, the economy is likely doing well. And when bank stocks are participating in a market rally, then it bodes well for the broader stock market.

In today’s chart, we look at the Bank Index (BKX).

As you can see, the banks have been in a falling channel for the past 20 months. As well, the banks have been lagging the broader market during this time as well – see the Ratio in the bottom half of the chart above.

That said, th...



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The Technical Traders

Currencies Show A Shift to Safety And Maturity - What Does It Mean?

Courtesy of Technical Traders

Recent rotation in multiple foreign currencies hints at the fact that a new stage of the “Capital Shift” process is taking place and that skilled technical investors need to pay very close attention to how these currencies continue to react over the next 3 to 6+ months.  In the recent past, most of the world’s foreign currencies were declining in value while the US Dollar continued to strengthen.  In fact, we authored many research articles about these trends and how weakness in foreign currencies will drive new foreign investment into the US stock markets for two simple reasons; strength and security. 

Now that a few of the world’s most ...



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Chart School

Review of Andrew CardWell RSI with Wyckoff price waves

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

RSI measures relative strength of price action of a set period versus prior set periods. It helps review the price swings or waves, the power of each price thrust into new ground, or lack of it. Price thrust like many things relies on energy, and energy is not a constant, it has a birth, a life and a death and relative strength helps us see that cycle. 

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Digital Currencies

Zuck Delays Libra Launch Date Due To Issues "Sensitive To Society"

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Authored by William Suberg via CoinTelegraph.com,

Facebook is taking a much more careful approach to Libra than its previous projects, CEO Mark Zuckerberg has confirmed. 

“Obviously we want to move forward at some point soon [and] not have this take many years to roll out,” he said. “But ...



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Lee's Free Thinking

Look Out Bears! Fed New QE Now Up to $165 Billion

Courtesy of Lee Adler

I have been warning for months that the Fed would need new QE to counter the impact of massive waves of Treasury supply. I thought that that would come later, rather than sooner. Sorry folks, wrong about that. The NY Fed announced another round of new TOMO (Temporary Open Market Operations) today.

In addition to the $75 billion in overnight repos that the Fed issued and has been rolling over since Tuesday, next week the Fed will issue another $90 billion. They’ll come in the form of three $30 billion, 14 day repos to be offered next week.

That brings the new Fed QE to a total of $165 billion. Even in the worst days of the financial crisis, I can’t remember the Fed ballooning its balance sheet by $165 bi...



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Biotech

The Big Pharma Takeover of Medical Cannabis

Reminder: We are available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

The Big Pharma Takeover of Medical Cannabis

Courtesy of  , Visual Capitalist

The Big Pharma Takeover of Medical Cannabis

As evidence of cannabis’ many benefits mounts, so does the interest from the global pharmaceutical industry, known as Big Pharma. The entrance of such behemoths will radically transform the cannabis industry—once heavily stigmatized, it is now a potentially game-changing source of growth for countless co...



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Mapping The Market

How IPOs Are Priced

Via Jean Luc 

Funny but probably true:

...

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Members' Corner

Despacito - How to Make Money the Old-Fashioned Way - SLOWLY!

Are you ready to retire?  

For most people, the purpose of investing is to build up enough wealth to allow you to retire.  In general, that's usually enough money to reliably generate a year's worth of your average income, each year into your retirement so that that, plus you Social Security, should be enough to pay your bills without having to draw down on your principle.

Unfortunately, as the last decade has shown us, we can't count on bonds to pay us more than 3% and the average return from the stock market over the past 20 years has been erratic - to say the least - with 4 negative years (2000, 2001, 2002 and 2008) and 14 positives, though mostly in the 10% range on the positives.  A string of losses like we had from 2000-02 could easily wipe out a decades worth of gains.

Still, the stock market has been better over the last 10 (7%) an...



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Promotions

Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"

 

 

Here's a free ebook for you to check out! 

Phil has a chapter in a newly-released eBook that we think you’ll enjoy.

In My Top Strategies for 2017, Phil's chapter is Secret Santa’s Inflation Hedges for 2017.

This chapter isn’t about risk or leverage. Phil present a few smart, practical ideas you can use as a hedge against inflation as well as hedging strategies designed to assist you in staying ahead of the markets.

Some other great content in this free eBook includes:

 

·       How 2017 Will Affect Oil, the US Dollar and the European Union

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About Phil:

Philip R. Davis is a founder Phil's Stock World, a stock and options trading site that teaches the art of options trading to newcomers and devises advanced strategies for expert traders...

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