The Five on Friday: The 5 Top Stories From The Market This Week 💰

The Five on Friday: The 5 Top Stories From The Market This Week 💰

#BlackFridayFallout
The importance of the Black Friday sales weekend was evident for several businesses, whose stock prices jumped on the success of the annual tradition.


What does this mean?
The annual madness of Black Friday and Cyber Monday has begun to settle down as we move one week closer to the holidays. Traditionally, the sales weekend was a time for brick-and-mortar stores to capitalize on a crush of customers rushing to purchase their wares. However, in-store shopping dropped 6.2%, mirroring a surge in Black Friday online shopping, which hit $7.4 billion, an all-time record for the day, up 8.4% from 2018. Likewise, Cyber Monday sales grew 21.5% year over year to $9.4 billion, further affirming the public’s preference for online shopping. Online-dominant businesses have thrived in this market, the most notable among these being GoPro and Shopify. Shopify stock rose almost 6% on Tuesday after generating almost $3 billion in sales over the weekend. Likewise, GoPro sales surged 120% over the 4 shopping days, with customers reacting positively to the company’s latest products.
Bet you didn’t know
The term “Black Friday” was first used in reference to the stock market crash of September 24, 1869.
 

#RokuDrop
It has been a bleak start to December for Roku as the company saw its stock plummet 15% on Monday following a downgrade from Morgan Stanley.


What does this mean?
For months, many of us have thought that Roku would be the primary benefactor of the Streaming Wars taking place between big names like Disney and Netflix. Alas, it seems that the brand-agnostic streaming device makers have irked analysts at Morgan Stanley, who now believe the stock — up 400% in the first 11 months of 2019 — looks to be far too expensive. The stock that could do no wrong is now falling flat, with fears that its advertising business growth will slow, as well as a rise in competition. This means that growth for that area of the company might start decelerating more quickly than investors anticipate. Elsewhere, active-account growth has also seen a slowdown year-on-year. If Roku wants to live up to the lofty goals it has set itself, it will need to start innovating soon. 
Bet you didn’t know
The average lifetime cost of subscribing to Netflix, Disney+, CBS, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and Sling TV is $31,423.

 

#FarewellLarry
Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page stepped down this week, with current Google CEO Sundar Pichai set to take over. 

What does this mean?
Yet another CEO will bite the dust in a 2019 which has broken turn over records in the U.S. After more than 2 decades at the helm, Larry Page will step back, and allow former Android head Sundar Pichai to claim the mantle of CEO of both Google and Alphabet. Both Page and fellow co-founder Sergey Brin announced on Tuesday that they would be retreating to the sidelines, and focusing on ‘the bigger picture’ at Google. This allows Pichai to spearhead the company’s day-to-day as well as larger projects, as he has done in the past with the likes of Pixel. Both Page and Brin will remain “actively involved” as members of Alphabet’s board, while the pair also retain a combined 11.4% of Alphabet. 
Bet you didn’t know
Google started as a Ph.D. project for Brin and Page, who released the first version of the company on Stanford University’s website in August 1996.

 

#PelotonsBADvertisement
Shares in Peloton fell nearly 9% on Tuesday over the release of its Christmas advert, which depicted a husband purchasing his wife a Peloton exercise bike. 


What does this mean?
The holidays are a time of forgiveness, joy, giving, and of course, comparing commercial America to a TV show depicting dystopian futures. Peloton depicted three out of four of the above in its holiday commercial entitled: “The gift that gives back”. The advert shows a woman receiving an exercise bike from her partner on Christmas morning. The gift inspires her to record a video diary of her exercise sessions, in which she proudly says: “A year ago I didn’t realize how much this would change me.” The backlash against the business – which sells $2,000 bikes equipped with screens for virtual spin classes — has seen its stock price drop a further 6% on Wednesday following from Tuesday’s drop. The advert has even been compared to Charlie Brooker’s dystopian television series ‘Black Mirror’, and labeled as both ‘sexist’ and ‘dystopian’. Perhaps not the best gift for your significant other this year. 
Bet you didn’t know
Peloton’s controversial ad was watched more than 2 million times on YouTube in the first 24 hours of going live. 

 

#AndFinally
Anyone who has been following the launch of Disney+ will probably be at least aware of its original Star Wars series, ‘The Mandalorian’. The show itself has been receiving glowing reviews and is proving to be a wonderful staple of the service, but Disney has one character to thank in particular: ‘Baby Yoda’. The breakout star has become a viral sensation over the past few weeks, but production of toys related to the character was delayed by Hasbro until the show was released in November for fear that it would be leaked early. Hasbro can probably still expect the series to be a big revenue booster, however, with the company owning the right to produce Star Wars toys through 2020, which also includes the movie franchises conclusion, ‘The Rise of Skywalker’.


What does this mean?
Fans of the cute little Disney-fied Star Wars character will simply have to wait until next year to get the stuffed toy. Ask Santa for a Jar-Jar Binks doll instead!
Bet you didn’t know
The demand for Star Wars merchandise following the original movie caught fledgling toymaker Kenner completely off guard and they resorted to selling empty boxes stuffed with promissory notes in lieu of actual Christmas merchandise.

JamieJamie

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