The Beats Go On. Earnings continue to roll in, and stocks continue to head higher.
- Earnings Update: Big Tech’s Results in the Spotlight. Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google parent company, Alphabet, all beat expectations in their quarterly earnings. The results show how their businesses are holding up in the throes of the coronavirus pandemic.
- Progress in Washington: Multiple reports discussed how the White House and Democratic leaders agreed to try and finalize a deal on enhanced unemployment benefits and eviction restrictions. It is unclear whether this means they think they can reach an agreement on a broader fifth coronavirus relief package by the end of the week. The Trump Administration is preparing an executive order to reallocate unused CARES Act money to support a continued additional $600 a week unemployment insurance benefits, to prevent evictions (local government COVID money is a prime target), and possibly deferring payroll tax payments.
- Claims Beat: U.S. Jobless Claims Fell to 1.2 Million in Latest Week (vs. 1.4 Million Briefing.com consensus); Continuing claims were down 16.1 Million, and while down, they are still historically elevated. While this huge revision to the June number is a positive, the US economy is still nowhere near replacing all jobs lost in March and April.
- Apple announced a 4 for 1 stock split last week.
- What does this mean for investors?
- Each Apple shareholder at the close of business on Aug. 24 will receive three additional shares for every share they hold. Trading will begin on a split-adjusted basis on Aug. 31. Apple shares traded for more than $400 per share in Thursday’s after-hours session. Based on that closing price, the post split price would be around $100 per share.
- What does this mean for the company?
- Other than a lower stock price, mostly nothing. Splits don’t change anything fundamentally about a company or its valuation, although they have a history of generating a short-term pop in a company’s stock price.
- What does this mean for the stock market?
- In most cases, stock splits have no impact on the broader stock market, especially within the market-cap weighted S&P 500. But the Dow Jones Industrial Average is a different story. The stock split won't shave any points from the blue-chip index, but it will make the tech company less influential in it.
- How does the stock split set Apple apart from other companies?
- This summer’s split will mark the fifth time Apple split its shares, highlighting its continued focus on courting retail investors. It bucks the trend at other big companies that have rallied over the years and trade for hundreds, or thousands of dollars a share. Among the stocks in the S&P 500, Apple had the 28th-highest share price as of Thursday's close.
- What does this mean for investors?
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Good News From Around the World
- A New Study Shows How Infrared Lasers can be used to combat Alzheimer's. A notable characteristic of several well-known neurodegenerative diseases—such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s—is the formation of harmful plaques that contain aggregates of amyloid proteins, also known as fibrils. Unfortunately, even after decades of research, getting rid of these plaques has remained a herculean challenge, so treatments for these patients have not been very effective. Now, scientists are revealing the results from experiments that show how resonance with an infrared laser, when it is tuned to a specific frequency, actually causes amyloid fibrils to disintegrate from the inside out.
- Lost Puppy Tracks Down His Vet’s Office And Finds Help Getting Home: A five-month-old puppy in Thailand wasn’t savvy enough to find its way back way home, but the dog is certainly clever because it found the vet’s office.It showed up wanting some help. The Putahracsa Veterinary Clinic in Bang Pu, Thailand posted surveillance video of the little dog showing up at their doorstep, where it waited until someone let it inside. The black puppy was barking at the very door of the office where it had been receiving monthly vaccinations since it was one-month-old, according to the Bangkok area vet who shared the video on Facebook. Luckily, the vet office recognized their patient and reunited the pet with its owner. Separated for 15 hours, the owner and dog were “very happy to see each other”.