Morning Brief: Top Financial Stories Dominating on Thursday, April 28

CNBC

Ford Motor Slashes 580 Jobs, Mainly In Engineering

  • Ford Motor Co F is slashing 580 U.S. salaried employees and agency workers as part of its ongoing Ford+ turnaround plan, CNBC reported.
  • The job loss includes 350 salaried and 230 agency positions, mostly in engineering.
  • The move comes as the auto major moves away from making vehicles with internal combustion engines, steering towards electrification.

Reuters

Volkswagen Plans To Expand Chattanooga Plant In US To Focus On EVs

  • Volkswagen AG VWAGY plans to expand its Chattanooga plant in the U.S. to produce an electric pick-up and the new ID.Buzz microbus, Reuters reported.
  • The move is expected to grow the company’s market share in North America.
  • The carmaker plans to invest at least $7.1 billion over the next five years in North America and add 25 new electric vehicles there by 2030.

Russian Court Penalizes YouTube, Twitter Again - Read Why

  • A Russian court has penalized U.S. internet giant Alphabet Inc’s GOOG GOOGL Google 3 million roubles ($41,000) for refusing to remove banned content from YouTube, Reuters reports.
  • The Russian court has also punished social media network Twitter, Inc TWTR with 3 million roubles ($41,000) for not removing banned content from its site.
  • Twitter failed to delete content banned in Russia, including posts with instructions on making Molotov cocktails.

Amazon’s Refusal To Reveal Product Search Algo Could Fuel Its Showdown With Australia

  • Amazon.com Inc AMZN refused to detail its product-search system to an Australian competition regulator.
  • The regulator noted that Amazon did not dominate Australia, unlike other large online retail markets, such as the U.S. and Britain.
  • Still, allowing large platforms to give their own products preferential treatment might influence purchasing decisions and damage competition calling for the disclosure of any activities which favor their products.

Airbus Steps Up Monitoring Chinese Supply Chain

  • Airbus SE EADSY is tightening monitoring of its Chinese supply chain following the increased disruption caused by recent pandemic lockdowns, Reuters reported, citing Airbus Chief Executive Guillaume Faury.
  • “The whole worldwide supply chain is complicated at the moment,” he mentioned at a news briefing in his capacity as head of France’s Gifas aerospace industry association.

WSJ

European Regulators Expect Risk Over Non-Payment Of Leveraged Loans

  • Europe’s banking regulator fears that highly indebted borrowers could start struggling to pay off their debt as the economy slow down, higher costs, and interest rates increase.
  • Leveraged financing has skyrocketed in Europe and elsewhere over the past years as central banks unleashed cheap money to propel economic growth.
  • Although issuance has slowed down this year because of the war in Ukraine, the European Central Bank (EBC) estimates over $4 trillion in such loans outstanding globally.

Bloomberg

Six US States Probing Mysterious Liver Inflammation In Kids

  • At least six U.S. states are reporting confirmed or suspected cases of an unexplained, severe liver disorder in children.
  • Health officials in New York state and Wisconsin said they’re investigating reports of pediatric hepatitis that match a description released last week by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  • The Wisconsin Department of Health Services said that one of four cases under investigation resulted in a fatality. If confirmed, it would be the first death linked to the illness in the U.S.

Central African Republic Declares Bitcoin Legal Currency

  • Bitcoin BTC/USD has been declared as an official currency by The Central African Republic, the second nation in the world to accept the cryptocurrency as legal tender, Bloomberg reports.
  • “Cryptomoney, including Bitcoin, is now considered an official currency in CAR,” Albert Mokpeme, spokesman for President Faustin-Archange Touadera, stated.

Meta Still Subject To Consumer Lawsuits For Breach Of Data Protection Rules, EU Regulator Says

  • The European Union’s top court saw Meta Platforms, Inc FB still subject to consumer group lawsuits for possible violations of data protection rules.
  • The EU’s data protection rules do not prevent “national legislation which allows a consumer protection association to bring legal proceedings,” the EU Court of Justice clarified.
  • The new rules put the regulators in charge of monitoring violations and investigating complaints.

KKR Offers To Takeover Hitachi Transport

  • KKR & Co Inc KKR disclosed a tender offer to take Hitachi Transport System, Ltd HTSLF private in a deal valued at JPY 670 billion ($5.2 billion).
  • KKR paid JPY 6,632 a share for Hitachi Transport’s 40% stake.
  • KKR offered 8,913 yen for each share of Hitachi Transport, implying a 166% premium.
  • KKR aims to make Hitachi Transport the leading third-party logistics company in Asia.

Benzinga

PayPal CEO Wants To Double Down On Digital Wallets, Sees Them As The Future

  • PayPal Holdings Inc PYPL CEO Daniel Schulman has said there’s a need to “double-down on the digital wallet.”
  • The CEO said PayPal needs to focus on the digital wallet because “We clearly believe that’s where the future of the industry is going.”
  • “It’s the future of PayPal. It is the heart of what we are trying to do from an engagement perspective. And so those are the two things that we really need to double-down on.”

Ethereum Whale Buys 2 Trillion Shiba Inu For $48M

  • An Ethereum ETH/USD whale was seen snapping up $48 million worth of Shiba Inu SHIB/USD tokens.
  • According to a transaction alert from blockchain wallet tracker Whale Stats, the whale bought 2 trillion SHIB tokens worth $48.4 million on Tuesday.

Elon Musk Tweets He’ll Buy Coca Cola Next To ‘Put Cocaine Back In,’ But Admits He Can’t Pull Off This McDonalds’ Miracle’

  • Tesla Inc TSLA CEO Elon Musk tweeted he wants to purchase Coca-Cola Co KO to “put the cocaine back in.”
  • The tweet received 956,100 likes and was retweeted 235,000 times at press time.
  • The entrepreneur said, “Kicks Red Bull’s ass!” in response to a Twitter user who pointed out that the first publicly sold bottle of Coca-Cola in 1894 contained 3.5 grams of cocaine.

Netflix To Axe 90% Of Upcoming Indian Content Slate As Part Of Revamp Plan

  • Amid a steep decline in subscribers, Netflix Inc’s NFLX Indian arm has reportedly decided to drop 90% of upcoming local web series and movies.
  • Netflix has decided to revamp its India content scheduled for release in the near future, entertainment website Bollywood Life.com reported on Thursday, citing an anonymous source.
  • The company now wants to pivot to a more commercial approach to its content as against its current “serious, dark, artistic path,” the report quoted the source as saying.

Goldman Sachs Explores NFTs, Mulls Tokenizing Real-World Assets: Report

  • Wall Street banking giant Goldman Sachs Group Inc GS is looking into tokenizing real-world assets.
  • According to a report from CoinDesk, Mathew McDermott, global head of digital assets at Goldman Sachs, told attendees of the Financial Times Crypto and Digital Assets Summit on Wednesday that the technology behind tokenization is “actually quite powerful.”
  • “We are actually exploring NFTs in the context of financial instruments ... So we work on a number of things,” said McDermott.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

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