Morning Brief: Top Financial Stories Dominating on Wednesday, April 20


As Central Banks Adjust Monetary Policies, IMF Signals Further Market Sell-Off

  • The International Monetary Fund has warned of more market sell-offs as central banks attempt to combat higher inflation and ease back on pandemic stimulus measures.
  • “There is certainly a risk of further sell-offs,” Tobias Adrian, director for monetary and capital markets at the IMF, told CNBC.
  • The IMF said high inflation would be around for longer than previously anticipated in its latest economic assessment. It is also estimated that the inflation rate will reach 7.7% in the United States this year and 5.3% in the eurozone.


Ripple CEO Believes Bitcoin’ Tribalism’ Is Dragging Crypto Industry Back

  • According to Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse, “Tribalism” around bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is dragging back the overall $2 trillion sector.
  • “Polarization isn’t healthy in my judgment,” Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse stated last week during a CNBC-hosted fireside chat at the Paris Blockchain Week Summit.
  • Former Yahoo executive Garlinghouse compared the crypto sector now to the dotcom boom of the late 1990s and early 2000s.



Biden To Announce New Military Package For Ukraine

  • Within the coming days, U.S. President Joe Biden is expected to announce another military aid package for Ukraine about the same size as the $800 million one last week, Reuters reported citing familiar sources.
  • One U.S. official said a new package was expected that would be roughly the size of the previous package, but details were still being worked out.


Credit Suisse Expects Loss In Q1 As Litigation Provisions, Russia-Ukraine Crisis Weigh

  • Credit Suisse Group AG CS said it is expecting a loss for the first quarter of fiscal 2022.
  • The company listed an increase in legal provisions and slow business activity due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as the reasons for seeing a loss in the quarter.
  • The Swiss bank estimated total litigation provisions increasing 600 million Swiss francs, resulting in total litigation provisions for the quarter to be about 700 million Swiss francs.


Google Shares Its African Product Development Center Debut Plans

  • Alphabet Inc’s GOOG GOOGL Google made its Africa product development center debut in Nairobi, looking to host 800 million internet users and a third of the world’s youth population by 2030.
  • Google looked to hire engineers, product managers, user experience designers, and researchers to staff the new center as a part of its 5-year plan entailing an investment of $1 billion.
  • Google has already opened an artificial intelligence center in Accra, Ghana.



KKR Led Consortium Offers To Buy Australia’s Largest Private Hospital Operator

  • Wall Street Journal reported that a KKR & Co Inc KKR-led consortium offered to buy Australian hospital operator Ramsay Health Care Ltd for roughly $14.9 billion.
  • The consortium includes sovereign-wealth funds, international and local investors, including Hesta superannuation fund, a person familiar with the matter said.
  • Ramsay said it had received a nonbinding, indicative proposal from a consortium to acquire the company for A$88 or about $65 a share in cash.



Just Eat Explores Grubhub Sale As It Sees Corrections Following Pandemic Recovery

  • Just Eat NV JTKWY weighed a partial or complete sale of its Grubhub unit after losing an unusually high level of customers across its key markets.
  • CEO Jitse Groen sought a turnaround plan that featured activity on Grubhub and expansion into groceries, and building out its courier network.
  • Shareholders lobbied for quicker action around its assets, pushing for clarity.


JPMorgan’s Chinese Tech Sector Downgrade Proved Costly for Them - Read How

  • JPMorgan Chase & Co JPM lost its position as the most senior underwriter for Kingsoft Cloud Holdings Ltd’s KC Hong Kong stock offering, Bloomberg reports.
  • The size of the offering in Hong Kong is relatively small, amounting to ~$100 million.
  • The change came after one of JPMorgan’s analysts cut the share-price target for the Chinese technology company by half.


Financial Times

Meta’s WhatsApp Business Fund Transfer Hits Roadblock In Brazil

  • Meta Platforms Inc’s FB long-awaited ambition of allowing users to send money to businesses via messaging app WhatsApp in Brazil suffered a roadblock with potential payments partners, the Financial Times reports.
  • WhatsApp looked to launch a payments-to-merchant (p2m) function in Latin America’s most populous country in 2021.
  • However, WhatsApp has struggled to win local “merchant acquirers” or companies that process electronic payments needed to launch and run the service.



Apple Analyst Says iPhone 14 Will Come With Major Camera Improvements: What You Need to Know

  • Apple Inc AAPL has hinted at strong new product momentum for 2022. Following its “Peek Performance” event in March, the company has scheduled its software-focused event in June.
  • The company will likely drop the next iteration of its iPhone sometime in late September or October. Famed Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo shared some details of the potential features that would be part of it.
  • The front camera of the four new iPhone 14 models will likely upgrade to autofocus and the aperture size will likely be f/1.9, Kuo said in a tweet.


Password Sharing Woes, Ads, ‘ARM,’ Price Hikes And More: Key Takeaways From Netflix’s Q1 Earnings Call

  • Netflix Inc NFLX stock lost more than a fourth of its market capitalization in extended trading on Tuesday after the streaming giant’s quarterly results failed to impress investors.
  • Russia Exit Hit: Netflix’s decision to stop streaming in Russia led to subscriber loss and had spillover effect too in parts of the EMEA region, Co-CEO Reed Hastings said on the call.
  • “We saw that in the central and eastern European countries,” Hastings said.


Tesla’s ‘Brutal’ China Disruptions Main Worry For Investors Ahead Of Q1 Earnings, Says Analyst

  • Tesla Inc TSLA investors would be focused on what the “brutal” three weeks of production halts in China mean for the rest of the year, according to Wedbush Securities, as the electric vehicle firm reports first-quarter earnings after the bell on Wednesday.
  • The Tesla Analyst: Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives has maintained an ‘outperform’ rating and a $1,400 price target on the Elon Musk-led company’s shares.
  • The analyst said Tesla’s robust demand story could be overshadowed by production issues in China.


Elon Musk Sends Out Another Cryptic Post Hinting At Tender Offer For Twitter

  • Tesla Inc TSLA CEO Elon Musk on Tuesday sent out yet another cryptic tweet suggesting he is either reading F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel “Tender Is The Night,” or considering a potential tender offer to Twitter Inc TWTR in a hostile takeover bid of the microblogging company.
  • The billionaire entrepreneur’s tweet said “_______ is the Night,” leaving the first word blank.


Cathie Wood Cuts Twitter Stake By $5.3M Amid Takeover Bids From Elon Musk, Others

  • Cathie Wood-led Ark Investment Management on Tuesday sharply trimmed its Twitter Inc TWTR stake as the microblogging site faces buyout bids from Tesla Inc TSLA CEO Elon Musk and other private equity firms.
  • The St. Petersburg, Florida-based money managing firm sold 114,576 shares, estimated to be worth $5.28 million, in the social media company.
  • Ark has significantly trimmed its stake in Twitter this year just months after placing huge bets on the microblogging site. A bulk of the exposure was lowered in February when the company reported quarterly earnings.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

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