Archive for the ‘Appears on main page’ Category

Why Uber Works will probably be great for businesses but not for gig economy workers

 

Why Uber Works will probably be great for businesses but not for gig economy workers

The new Uber Works app. Ascannio / Shutterstock.com

Courtesy of Shainaz Firfiray, Warwick Business School, University of Warwick

Uber is still best known as a ride-hailing platform but it has been branching out into other industries. Food (Uber eats), electric scooters and bicycles (Jump), and now shift work with the launch of Uber Works. It is being trialled in Chicago, with plans to launch elsewhere soon, and enables casual workers such as cleaners, bar staff and warehouse workers to find work.

Uber emphasises its unique “technology-first approach” to linking gig workers with jobs will lead to a more efficient marketplace. The app allows people to find shifts without having to re-enter their credentials every time they look for a new job. Uber expects this to provide a faster and easier way for businesses to connect with workers while also offering more information on available work opportunities, thus improving the experience for both workers and businesses.

Many people around the world use staffing agencies to find work. Yet the status quo is not ideal – for workers or for businesses. Workers face rigid schedules and imperfect information about where they can find shift work and how much they can expect to earn. Businesses struggle to find suitable staff to address unexpected labour shortages.

Uber’s new app may well help businesses reduce their scheduling problems and address seasonal work shortages. But whether it will improve the experience of workers is less clear.

Algorithms vs autonomy

Job platforms like Uber Works use algorithms to match businesses with workers. The algorithm instantly identifies and offers work to people once they have agreed to the terms and conditions mentioned in the app, created their profile and uploaded relevant documentation such as a proof of identity.

This digital management falls within the broader framework of the gig economy, which has disrupted our traditional notions of work. Under this system, workers are hired to complete tasks or hyper-flexible “gigs” within a short period of time. But there is little commitment between workers and their employers.

Gig workers are frequently…
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Wonderful Wednesday – Still at Record Highs – What Could Go Wrong?

Image result for S&P 3,100Another day near 3,100 on the S&P.

Kentucky seems to have voted Democrat Andy Bshaear to be the new Governor but current Governor, Matt Bevin refuses to concede, so that will drag on all day and maybe longer.  In Virginia, however, Democrats completely flipped the state blue, taking over the Senate and the House in a state that had been dependably Republican.  These are not good signs for the GOP in November or Trump now as Bevin was a huge Trump supporter and Trump personally flew down there and campaigned hard for him Monday night.

If GOP Senators, Congresspeople and Governors find no use for Trump's support – it's not a great leap to imagining they will find no use for Trump and his unbreakable wall of GOP impeachment blockers may begin to crumble.  Kentucky is Mitch McConnell's home state and "Moscow Mitch" only won 2014 56% to 40% against a throw-away candidate for the Dems (Alison Grimes).  Bevin won in 2015 52.5% to 43.8% and is out on his ass today – Mitch is getting nervous to say the least – as he hasn't had a real job since 1985.

China buys more from Brazil as tariffs biteMeanwhile, according to Bloomberg's excellent new "Terms of Trade" section (and according to me yesterday), China is insisting Trump drop all tariffs in order to move forward with the signing Trump is promising on Nov 17th.  In other words, there is no actual deal and Trump's lying to the American People and claiming there is one has now painted the US into a corner where Trump will be forced to concede to China in order to cover up his lies – that's why these things matter!

From the Chinese perspective, the argument is that if they are going to remove one big point of leverage and resume purchases of American farm goods and make new commitments to crack down on intellectual property theft — the key elements of the interim deal — then they want to see equivalent moves to remove tariffs by the U.S. rather than the simple lifting of the threat of future duties.

Also according to Bloomberg, the risk of a US
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Chinese Chess Game

 

Chinese Chess Game

Courtesy of John Mauldin, Thoughts from the Frontline 

Every investment decision should have an exit strategy. What will you do if your idea doesn’t work? Ideally, you make that decision before you invest. Mistakes are inevitable but survivable if you recognize them quickly and act to minimize their costs.

The same is true in business, international relations… or even a chess game. Great ideas don’t always work out as expected. Then what?

In last week’s letter, we discussed some serious flaws in the decision to bring China into the world trade system. People across the spectrum mostly see this now; although they differ on what to do about it.

When the US and ultimately the rest of the Western world began to engage China, resulting in China finally being allowed into the World Trade Organization in the early 2000s, no one really expected the outcomes we see today. There is no simple disengagement path, given the scope of economic and legal entanglements. This isn’t a “trade” we can simply walk away from. But it is also one that, if allowed to continue in its current form, could lead to a loss of personal freedom for Western civilization. It really is that much of an existential question.

Doing nothing isn’t an especially good option because, like it or not, the world is becoming something quite different than we expected just a few years ago—not just technologically, but geopolitically and socially. Today I want to dive deeper into this topic and how it will change the world economy and our individual lives. This letter is a little scarier than usual, but maybe that is because I am actually writing it on Halloween.

Orderly World

We’ll start by reviewing how we got here.

My generation, and I suspect many if not most of my readers, came of age during the Cold War. The world order was pretty clear in those 40 or so years. You had the US, its NATO allies, plus a few others like Japan and Australia lined up against the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact countries, i.e. Eastern Europe. Most international trade and cultural exchange took place within those two…
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Tremendous Tuesday – Markets Remain at All-Time Highs

The rally continues

We've been promised a trade deal and we've been promised tax cuts and the S&P has soared over the 3,000 level and is testing 3,100 with the Dow at 27,500, Nasdaq (100) 8,236 and the Russell is dragging behind at 1,603 as it was over 1,700 a year ago but no sense picking nits – this is a Hell of a rally!

Of course the Dollar has been pushed down 2% since the Fed last Wednesday and 2% of 3,000 is 60 and we're 60 points over the previous high so it would be nice to see the S&P and the other indexes REALLY make new highs without the help of a weak Dollar or trade or tax promises but these are not the kind of parents that are willing to let their children succeed or fail on their own merits – are they?

It’s very clear we’re seeing lots of celebration in the market, not just in stocks, but in emerging market assets such as the Yuan and coming out of havens like the Japanese Yen,” said Jane Foley, head of foreign exchange strategy at Rabobank. The cut in interest rates by the Federal Reserve last week has added to investors’ optimism, she said. “The rally can extend for a one to three month view.”

Image result for trump xi trade war cartoonPer Bloomberg: China is seeking the roll back of U.S. tariffs on as much as $360Bn worth of Chinese imports before President Xi Jinping agrees to go to the U.S. to sign a partial trade deal with President Donald Trump, according to people familiar with the matter. 

Negotiators asked the Trump administration to eliminate tariffs on about $110Bn in goods that were imposed in September and lower the 25% tariff rate on about $250Bn that began last year.  China has also previously demanded that Trump cancel plans to impose duties on roughly $160Bn in imports, scheduled for Dec. 15th, which would hit consumer favorites like smart-phones and laptops. At the very least, those tariffs have to be taken off the table for Xi to get on a plane to meet Trump.

Nonetheless, Trump and all the White House dwarves have been out talking up a trade deal and I think
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Guru Grades

 

Guru Grades

Courtesy of 

“Stock prices have reached what looks like a permanently high plateau.”*

Everybody is familiar with this quote from Irving Fisher, which appeared on the front cover of the New York Times on October 16th, 1929. This will live on forever because just eight trading sessions later, the Dow crashed 13.47%. The following day it fell another 11.73%.

That permanently high plateau would not be seen again until the winter of 1954.

There is another Fisher quote that doesn’t get nearly as much attention and one that I only just learned about thanks to  Jason Zweig **  Two weeks later with stocks down more than 20%, Fisher said “It now looks as though the bottom of the market had been found and many are taking advantage of the opportunity to come back and invest again.”

Oof.

These two quotes have made Irving Fisher a first-ballot member of the financial freezing cold takes hall of fame.

It has been ninety years since these statements were made and you would think we would have learned by now that peering into the future is impossible. We laugh off predictions made by palm readers or fortune tellers but we listen when people tell us what will happen in the markets. Ben Graham absolutely nailed it when he said, “Nearly everyone interested in common stocks wants to be told by someone else what he thinks the market is going to do. The demand being there, it must be supplied.”

Oh it is supplied alright.

Barron’s did their big money poll where they got opinions from 134 money managers on a various array of topics:

  • Investment outlook for U.S. stocks over the next 12 months
  • Where will the market be at year end and midyear 2020
  • Is the U.S. stock market over, under, or fairly valued.
  • What will real U.S. GDP be in the next 12 months?
  • When will the next recession arrive?
  • What will the 10-year treasury yield one year from now?
  • How likely is it that U.S. yields will turn negative


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Just Another Manic Monday

The Dow is up another 125 points (0.5%) this morning.

The S&P is already up 22% for the year and, as you can see from this WSJ chart,  We've had lots of good years lately with the 2 down years in the last 10 combining for a total loss of less than 7% while the 8 positive years have added 142% but keep in mind that's cumulative, with the gains compounding each year – giving us the incredible new highs the market is at right now – despite having first dropped almost 40% in 2008.

On Fox News this morning, a guest was saying that we can't raise taxes now because the economy is so good that there's bound to be a recession coming so we need low taxes to fight off the recession.  Of course, when there is a recession – they'll tell us that they need to lower taxes too.  I've been watching a lot of Fox News this weekend as I'm on a ship and it's the only US news channel.  By the way, when are the Democrats going to stop harassing poor Presient Trump?

Our market rally has clearly been led by the Information Technology sector, which is up 36% and companies like Apple (AAPL), Chipotle (CMG) and Target (TGT) are up over 60% for the year, boosting the large-cap sector.  The S&P 500 is now trading at 20 times the earnings of it's components - another all-time high and significantly higher than other countries are trading.

When will the music stop – if it ever does?  The "normal" p/e ration for the S&P 500 is 16 – so we're 25% above that but "normally" there are other things you could do with your investment capital, like put it in the bank, bonds or housing but the banks and bonds now CHARGE YOU to hold your money in many countries and don't pay enough to keep up with inflation in the US while bonds are ridiculously low thanks to the Fed – certainly not a place you want to invest.

Real Estate is what led the last market correction so investors are sensibly gun-shy about tying up their assets in that sector again and that pretty much leaves…
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Behind those headlines. Why not to rely on claims robots threaten half our jobs

 

Behind those headlines. Why not to rely on claims robots threaten half our jobs

Most of the headlines derive from a single study. Over the past six years its predictions have been anything but accurate. Collage

Courtesy of Michael Coelli, University of Melbourne and Jeff Borland, University of Melbourne

Should we believe headlines claiming nearly half of all jobs will be lost to robots and artificial intelligence?

We think not, and in a newly released study we explain why.

Headlines trumpeting massive job losses have been in abundance for five or so years.

Even The Conversation has had its had its share.

Most come from a common source.

It is a single study, conducted in 2013 by Oxford University’s Carl Benedict Frey and Michael Osborne.

This study lies behind the claim that 47% of jobs in the United States were at “high risk” of automation over the next ten or so years.

Many claims, one source

Google Scholar says it has been cited more than 4,300 times, a figure that doesn’t count newspaper headlines.

The major predictions of job losses due to automation in Australia are based directly on its findings. Commentaries about the future of work in Australia have also drawn extensively on the study.

What if robots can do less than we think? Shutterstock

In Australia and elsewhere the study’s predictions have led to calls for a Universal Basic Income and for a “work guarantee” that would allocate the smaller number of jobs fairly.

Our new research paper concludes the former study’s predictions are not well-founded.

It has two weaknesses.

First, the method used to make predictions has major flaws.

Second, the predictions have not fared well when compared to actual changes in employment in the United States in the time since they were made.

Flawed method

The study authors asked a group of machine…
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Uber Eats Says Drone Deliveries Coming To San Diego In 2020

Courtesy of ZeroHedge

If it's UPS, FedEx, and or Amazon, or maybe even food delivery companies, they're all gravitating towards adopting drones for last-mile deliveries.

UPS has undoubtedly embraced the focus of last-mile logistics by incorporating drones over the last several years.

Now it seems like Uber Eats, an online food ordering and delivery platform — launched by ride-hailing company Uber, is the next company to utilize drones for delivering goods from businesses to consumers. 

The company is expected to launch the new drone delivery service in the San Diego Metropolitan area in 2H20. 

On Oct. 28, Uber tweeted a rendering of the Uber Eats drone, a six-rotor drone that is capable of carrying two meals in its body. 

The drone has the capability of traveling up to 18 miles or 12 miles round-trip at an altitude of about 400 feet. 

From the restaurant (staging area) to the drop-off point, the company estimates delivery times to the customer will be around eight minutes, including the time to load and unload the meals.

 

Several pilot tests of the new service were conducted in 2018. A McDonald's near San Diego State University was the site of one of the tests.

Uber Eats has spent that last year perfecting the design of the drone. The one seen in the rendered picture tweeted by Uber is expected to be the final design.

More elaborate test flights are slated for the next several months, as it's expected the new service will launch in San Diego by summer 2020.





The Future of 5G: Comparing 3 Generations of Wireless Technology

 

The Future of 5G: Comparing 3 Generations of Wireless Technology

Courtesy of Ashley Viens at Visual Capitalist

The Future of 5G: Comparing 3 Generations of Wireless Technology

Wireless technology has evolved rapidly since the turn of the century. From voice-only 2G capabilities and internet-enabled 3G, today’s ecosystem of wireless activity is founded on the reliable connection of 4G.

Fifth-generation wireless network technology, better known as 5G, is now being rolled out in major cities worldwide. By 2024, an estimated 1.5 billion mobile users?which account for 40% of current global activity?will be using 5G wireless networks.

Today’s chart highlights three generations of wireless technology in the 21st century, and the differences between 3G, 4G, and 5G networks.

5G: The Next Great Thing?

With over 5 billion mobile users worldwide, our world is growing more connected than ever.

Data from GSMA Intelligence shows how rapidly global traffic could grow across different networks:

  • 2018: 43% of mobile users on 4G
  • 2025: 59% of mobile users on 4G, 15% of mobile users on 5G

But as with any new innovation, consumers should expect both positives and negatives as the technology matures.

Benefits

  • IoT Connectivity
    5G networks will significantly optimize communication between the Internet of Things (IoT) devices to make our lives more convenient.
  • Low latency
    Also known as lag, latency is the time it takes for data to be transferred over networks. Users may see latency rates drop as low as one millisecond.
  • High speeds
    Real-time streaming may soon be a reality through 5G networks. Downloading a two-hour movie takes a whopping 26 hours over 3G networks and roughly six minutes on 4G networks?however, it’ll only take 3.6 seconds over 5G.

Drawbacks

  • Distance from nodes
    Walls, trees, and even rain can significantly block 5G wireless signals.
  • Requires many nodes
    Many 5G nodes will need to be installed to offer the same level of coverage found on 4G.
  • Restricted to 5G-enabled devices
    Users can’t simply upgrade their software. Instead,


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Non-Farm Friday – Is America Working?

Image result for census hiring by month"How "great" are things?

Job growth has been anemic all summer, starting with a depression-level 62,000 in May but June, July and August were all around 170,000 and September was back at the edge of a cliff at 136,000 and we've been told it's "no big deal" every time but it's actually a very big deal because the Government is hiring hundreds of thousands of Census Workers and even August, which clocked in at 168,000 official jobs had just 100,000 jobs if you didn't count the Census Workers and September job growth was near zero without the Census

In fact, the Census is still 500,000 jobs behind in hiring as the Trump Administration doesn't seem very eager to do their Constitutional duty and count the voting public – most likely because the demographics are turning against the GOP and they'd like to maintain the 2010 status quo for another 10 years if they can.  It's also possible Trump has been "saving" the hiring to be closer to the 2020 election – so he can boost his job numbers so he can brag about them next year – before they are all terminated at the end of the count.

In a presentation to the National Advisory Committee in May, the Census Bureau said they needed to begin canvassing in August (two months ago) in order to be done by December of 2020 (as mandated by the US Constitution).  More importantly (to Trump) the Census Bureau warned that any undercounting due to delays would disproportionately undercount Black and Hispanic voters as well as poor voters – who tend to respond less to Internet, Paper and Phone survey requests.  I guess that was all Trump needed to hear…

Image result for trump immigrant meme"Undercounts in the census lead to under-representation in Congress and Trump has already kicked over 300,000 people out of the country, leading to an environment of fear that will cause census responses to go even lower as people are suspicious that it's a trick to get them to reveal relatives who are potentially illegal.  Imagine if you were a Jew in Germany in the 30s…
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The Technical Traders

Great Cycles Article PG 9 in TradersWorld Mag - Free

Courtesy of Technical Traders

  1. How to Use Price Cycles and Profit as a Swing Trader
  2. Geodetics and the Affairs of Men – USA, and China
  3. Cosmological Economics
  4. Time Machine
  5. Trading Means Pr...


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Zero Hedge

Swiss National Bank Now Owns Record $94 Billion In US Stocks After Q3 Buying Spree

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

In the third quarter of 2019, one in which the global economy continued to cycle lower, global central banks across the world continued to slash interest rates and launched/expanded quantitative easing programs with very little success at troughing global growth. Still, US equity indices powered to new highs, climbing a wall of worry of President Trump's "trade optimism" tweets. 

It seemed quite evident over the quarter that President Trump's tweeting of constant fake trade news and reco...



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Phil's Favorites

Below-Average Bull Market

 

Below-Average Bull Market

Courtesy of 

My Chart o’ the Day comes from LPL’s Ryan Detrick, who notes that:

Many consider this bull market the greatest ever, given it has incredibly lasted more than 10 years. But in terms of magnitude, many would be surprised to hear that the 357% gain during this bull market is still beneath the record 417% gain seen during the 1990s.

This bull market also isn’t the strongest in history in terms of gains, even though it has lasted longer than any other bull market…On an annualized return basis, this bull market has gained 15.3%, which is actual...



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Digital Currencies

Is Bitcoin a Macro Asset?

 

Is Bitcoin a Macro Asset?

Courtesy of 

As part of Coindesk’s popup podcast series centered around today’s Invest conference, I answered a few questions for Nolan Bauerly about Bitcoin from a wealth management perspective. I decided in December of 2017 that investing directly into crypto currencies was unnecessary and not a good use of a portfolio’s allocation slots. I remain in this posture today but I am openminded about how this may change in the future.

You can listen to this short exchange below:

...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Silver Testing This Support For The First Time In 8-Years!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

Its been a good while since Silver bulls could say that it is testing support. Well, this week that can be said! Will this support test hold? Silver Bulls sure hope so!

This chart looks at Silver Futures over the past 10-years. Silver has spent the majority of the past 8-years inside of the pink shaded falling channel, as it has created lower highs and lower lows.

Silver broke above the top of this falling channel around 90-days ago at (1). It quickly rallied over 15%, before creating a large bearish reversal pattern, around 5-weeks after the bre...



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Insider Scoop

Analysts Upbeat On Skyworks' Fundamentals

Courtesy of Benzinga

Skyworks Solutions Inc (NASDAQ: SWKS) reported better-than-expected fiscal fourth-quarter earnings and revenues, but the stock is slipping in reaction to the year-over-year declines in both metrics.

The Analysts

Bank of America analyst Vivek Arya reiterated an Underperform rating and $92 price target for Skyworks shares. (See his track record ...



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Chart School

Gold Gann and Cycle Review

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

Gold has performed well, golden skies are here again. In fact it has been a straight line move, and this is typically unusual and a pause can be expected.

It seems the markets are happy again, new highs in the SP500, US 10 year interest rates look to re bound, negative interest may soften. The US FED has reversed their QT and now doing $250BN (not QE) repo. The main point is the FED has stopped QT, and will do QE forever. The evidence now is the FED put is under market risk and the possibility of excessive losses do not exist. 

Point: If in future if there is market risk, the FED will print it's way out of it.
Subject To: In this blog view. The above is so until the amount required rocks confidence in the US dollar as a reserve currency.&n...



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Lee's Free Thinking

Today's Fed POMO TOMO FOMC Alphabet Soup Unspin

Courtesy of Lee Adler

But make no mistake, if the Fed wants money rates to stay down by another quarter, it will need to imagineer even more money.

That’s on top of the $281 billion it has already imagineered into existence since addressing its “one-off” repo market emergency on September 17. This came via  “Temporary” Repo Man Operations money, and $70.6 billion in Permanent Open Market Operations (POMO) money.

By my calculations that averages out to $7.4 billion per business day. That works out to a monthly pace of $155 billion or so.

If they keep this up, it will be more than enough to absorb every penny of new Treasury supply. That supply had caused the system to run out of money in mid September.  This flood of paper had been inundati...



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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:

 

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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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