2019-03-23

Tech Review 1) When Will Humans Get To Mars? (video)

graphic "Tech Review" ©2017 DomainMondo.com
Tech Review (TR 2019-03-23)--Domain Mondo's weekly review of tech investing news: Features • 1) When Will Humans Get To Mars? 2) Amazon $AMZN Media Strategy, 3) Investing: The Week & Notes: 'Japanification’ of the Eurozone OR Eurification? 4) ICYMI Tech News: Google, 5G, Facebook, Qualcomm, Tesla, AMD, FIS & Worldpay, Quitting Big Tech.

1) When Will Humans Get To Mars?

Sending astronauts to Mars is a daunting prospect that will not deter NASA and private companies from trying to put humans on the red planet. The Economist.com video above published Feb 28, 2019.

2) Amazon $AMZN Media Strategy

When Amazon pursued the rights to a “Lord of the Rings” series in 2017, the company knew it would have to overcome some major obstacles to lure the J.R.R. Tolkien estate to its video-streaming platform. Amazon was a relative newcomer in video, with no track record of shepherding a blockbuster series. HBO, meanwhile, could tout its long history of hits, most notably “Game of Thrones,” a similarly epic series based on fantasy novels with a rabid fan base. Netflix, with more than 100 million subscribers, pioneered the on-demand model with hits such as “House of Cards” and “Orange is the New Black.” Apple was also in on the negotiations to acquire the rights for the upcoming TV show, according to people familiar with the matter.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, a big “Lord of the Rings” fan, was promising the Amazon Studios team a huge budget to nab the series, a prequel to Tolkien’s “The Fellowship of the Ring.” But money alone wasn’t going to separate Amazon from the pack — Amazon’s $250 million offer wasn’t even the highest bid for the show’s rights, according to a person familiar with the matter. The ultimate selling point, according to people with knowledge of the negotiations, related to Amazon’s original business from over two decades ago: books.

The Tolkien estate was convinced that in promoting the series, Amazon could sell truckloads of Tolkien’s fantasy novels, including “The Hobbit” and “The Silmarillion” as well as “The Lord of the Rings.” During meetings with the Tolkien estate and publisher HarperCollins, Amazon’s Sharon Tal Yguado, who was hired from Fox in 2017, demonstrated a near encyclopedic knowledge of Tolkien’s characters, stories and geography, said the people, who asked not to be named because the talks were private.

The “Lord of the Rings” series will start production in the next two years. The huge investment in a TV series has made Hollywood wonder just how much Bezos will spend on content. So far, Amazon has dabbled across the TV spectrum, with original content such as “Lord of the Rings,” a growing back catalog of movies and shows, as well as live sports from the National Football League and the Premier League. In February, 2019, Bezos was spotted chatting with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell at the Super Bowl, a reminder that Amazon has several opportunities in the coming years to make a big splash in America’s most lucrative sport. Meanwhile, The New York Post reported that Amazon is nearing a $3.5 billion deal to acquire the YES network, the regional sports network in New York that carries Yankees games. CNBC.com video above published Mar 13, 2019.

3) Investing
graphic: "INVESTING"  ©2017 DomainMondo.com
The Week: NASDAQ Composite +0.8% | S&P 500 Index -0.9% | DJIA -1.1%
Dow drops more than 450 points, S&P 500 posts worst day since January amid global growth worries--CNBC.com, Friday, March 22, 2019. Despite the decline on Friday, stocks are still up sharply for the year: S&P 500 is up 11.7%, the tech-heavy NASDAQ up 15.2%, and the Dow is up 9.2%.

Editor's note: the first four days of the week (graphic below) tell the tale of FOMC Fed Chair press conference Mar 20, 2:30pm, but on Friday the 3-month vs. 10-year Treasury spread inverted for the first time since 2007, a signal (provided the inversion remains for 10 days), indicating a recession sometime within the next 2 years, perhaps sooner, particularly when the inversion is followed by a second one. 
NASDAQ Composite
Investor Notes: a global slowdown led by Europe
"... manufacturing activity in Germany dropped to its lowest level in more than six years in March. In France, manufacturing and services slowed down to their lowest levels in three months and two months, respectively. For the euro zone as a whole, manufacturing fell to its lowest level since April 2013. These data sent the German 10-year bund yield briefly into negative territory, its lowest level since 2016 ..."--CNBC.com
The ‘Japanification’ of the Eurozone--the eurozone is beginning to resemble Japan with its low-growth and low-inflation environment, coupled with still very loose monetary policy, according to economists at ING--"An end to current unconventional monetary policy, i.e. the negative deposit rate and ample liquidity, is not in sight and the ECB is expected to do everything it can to avoid an unwarranted tightening of its monetary stance."

Eurification: "Why is Europe caught in a lost decade – 12 years of minimal growth? There are definitely parallels with Japan, but as many differences ... the core problem is the structure behind the Euro – ill-conceived but now a “must-preserve-at-all-costs” construct that represents the “key-success” of the European polity ... The failure of the Euro structure has magnified one massive difference between  Eurofication and Japanificiation. While Japan fell into stagnation at full employment, Europe is substantially below – especially the further you get from Germany. Youth unemployment is massive across the EU and it looks permanent ... Eurofication is a stalled economy, stalled consumption and long-term massive structural unemployment"--Bill BlainEditor's noteif they are plucky, the Brits will leave the Euromess April 12.

See also Eurozone’s push for unified fiscal discipline is doomed to fail says Dr. Juan Castaneda--cityam.com.

France’s Message for the G7--President Emmanuel Macron and his Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire are using France’s G7 presidency to push an agenda that includes minimum global taxes and higher levies on tech giants like Amazon and Facebook. Le Maire’s view is there’s little choice if Europe doesn’t want to be dependent on U.S. or Chinese giants--use competition law against global tech giants, enabling the creation of European competitors.

4) ICYMI Tech News:
graphic: "ICYMI Tech News" ©2017 DomainMondo.com
EU vs Google: The EU fines Google €1.49B for “abusive practices in online advertising” and breaching EU antitrust rules--europa.eu.

Google debuts Stadia, a game streaming service for Chrome, Android, and TVs that lets users “instantly” play games, also coming in 2019 with 4K HDR support at 60FPS--youtube.com.

Cutting through the 5G hype: survey shows telcos’ nuanced views--mckinsey.com Operators see a marginally positive business case, expect rollout at scale to take until 2022, and don’t think the increase in capital-expense-to-sales ratio will be as big as skeptics claim.

Facebook:  Zuckerberg planning to change Facebook from an open connected platform to a private, encrypted network encompassing its Facebook platform, WhatsApp and Instagram.

Qualcomm: Misunderstood Legal Ramifications And 5G Tailwinds--seekingalpha.com.

Tesla--How Not To Run A Company--A Mess at the Top & Moody’s Gets Nervous, Decision-Making Chaos, Epic Strategy Flip-Flops--wolfstreet.com.

AMD: Advanced Mass Delusions--seekingalpha.com

FIS’s $43B takeover of Worldpay--the scramble to build global payment systems.

Personal Tech: Quitting the five tech giants, full series: Day 1: Amazon; Day 2: Facebook; Day 3: Google; Day 4: Microsoft; Day 5: Apple.
Editor's Note: I'm minimal Microsoft, zero Apple, zero Facebook, but use Google daily, and use Amazon almost daily. How about you?
And social media? 
"Oldsters are on Facebook. Hipsters are on Twitter and vapidity rules on Instagram. As for Snapchat, it’s like Second Life, something overhyped that never broke through"--Bob Lefsetz

-- John Poole, Editor, Domain Mondo  

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2019-03-22

Levi Strauss & Company $LEVI Publicly Traded Again (video)

Timeline: Levi Strauss & Company

Fortune Magazine video above published Mar 20, 2019. See also Levi's Surges in Return to Market in Year's Top U.S. IPO--bloomberg.com.

$LEVI


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2019-03-21

Google $GOOGL $GOOG Hit With $1.7 Billion EU Antitrust Fine (video)

EU fines Google $1.7 billion for breaking antitrust rules

March 20, 2019: European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager says Google abused its dominance to prevent the growth of its advertising rivals.

Google has engaged in 'very abusive practices,' EU Commissioner says

European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager speaks to CNBC's Silvia Amaro after the EU fined Google $1.7 billion for breaching antitrust rules.
$GOOGL
In Google's filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Wednesday morning, Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOGL) stated it would take a €1.49 billion ($1.7 billion) charge in Q1 2019 to pay the European Commission (EC) fine levied for infringement of “European competition law.” The total amount of EC fines against Google now total $9.32 billion.. In June of 2017, Google was fined for $2.7 billion for illegal comparison shopping services and then again for $5.0 billion in July 2018 for illegal practices related to its Android mobile operating system, mobile apps and services.


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2019-03-20

Federal Reserve Chairman's Press Conference LIVE Wednesday, March 20

FOMC Press Conference LIVE March 20, 2019, 2:30pm EDT

FOMC Press Conference LIVE March 20, 2019, at 2:30 pm EDT, with the Fed Chair, following FOMC Meeting associated with a Summary of Economic Projections. Summary: no rate-hikes in 2019, one rate-hike in 2020, and balance sheet normalization ends in September.

See also March 20, 2019 Balance Sheet Normalization Principles and Plans.

Domain: federalreserve.gov
Effective Federal Funds Rate--Above: Jul 1954 - Feb 2019
The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) consists of twelve members--the seven members of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System; the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York; and four of the remaining eleven Reserve Bank presidents, who serve one-year terms on a rotating basis. The rotating seats are filled from the following four groups of Banks, one Bank president from each group: Boston, Philadelphia, and Richmond; Cleveland and Chicago; Atlanta, St. Louis, and Dallas; and Minneapolis, Kansas City, and San Francisco. Nonvoting Reserve Bank presidents attend the meetings of the Committee, participate in the discussions, and contribute to the Committee's assessment of the economy and policy options.
The FOMC holds eight regularly scheduled meetings per year. At these meetings, the Committee reviews economic and financial conditions, determines the appropriate stance of monetary policy, and assesses the risks to its long-run goals of price stability and sustainable economic growth.
2019 FOMC Members:
Alternate Members:

Fed Chairman Powell at FOMC Press Conference January 30, 2019

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2019-03-19

Deutsche Bank $DB & Commerzbank In Merger Talks (video)

Deutsche Bank & Commerzbank In Merger Talks

Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank are the largest banks in Germany. Seeing as size and strength are crucial in international banking, the two banks in talks now to join forces to become one large financial entity. The goal is to keep up with international competition. The German government also supports the move. DW News video above published Mar 18, 2019.

NYSE: DB
Nobody likes Deutsche-Commerzbank deal: head of German investment body

Stefan Mueller, CEO and founder of the German Institute for Asset Allocation, discusses the pitfalls of a Deutsche Bank-Commerzbank merger. CNBC International TV video above published Mar 18, 2019.
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2019-03-18

Airbnb Buying HotelTonight (video), Likely To Delay IPO

Airbnb Is Buying HotelTonight

Airbnb coming closer to a one-stop shop for travel by buying HotelTonight. Fortune Magazine video above published Mar 7, 2019.

Airbnb says it’s been profitable for two years straight, in preparation for an initial public offering (IPO) of shares. Airbnb is one of several unicorns reportedly preparing to IPO, including Uber, Lyft and WeWork. But Airbnb's IPO may not actually debut this year due to the HotelTonight acquisition.

Domains: airbnb.com and hoteltonight.com

A‌i‌r‌b‌n‌b‌, ‌I‌n‌c‌.‌ is a privately held global company headquartered in San Francisco that operates an online marketplace and hospitality service accessible via its websites and mobile apps. Members can use the service to arrange or offer lodging, primarily homestays, or tourism experiences.
  • Airbnb CEO: Brian Chesky (Aug 2008–)
  • Revenue: 2.6 billion USD (2017)
  • Number of employees: 3,100 (2017)
  • Founders: Brian Chesky, Nathan Blecharczyk, Joe Gebbia


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DISCLAIMER

2019-03-17

News Review 1) ICANN64 Report, TSG Model A House Built On Sand?

graphic "News Review" ©2016 DomainMondo.com
Domain Mondo's weekly internet domain news review (NR 2019-03-17) with analysis and opinion: Features •  1)a. ICANN64 Report, TSG Model A House Built On Sand? b. ICANN64 Photo Album, c. Root Servers Governance, d. GAC Communique, e. EPDP, f. Post-Meeting Report, 2) a. .AMAZON, b. RPMs PDP Dysfunction, c. Alpnames, 3) Tucows $TCX 10-K, 4) ICYMI Data Privacy: China, Facebook, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, Verizon, Apple, GDPR, 5) Most Read.

1) ICANN64 Report
a. GDPR, RDAP & Registrants' Data - TSG Draft Model A House Built On Sand?
TSG on Access to Non-Public Registration Data: Mar 11, 2019, ICANN64 Session. See also ICANN blogpost, the draft model (pdf), TSG page, and ICANN64 presentation (pdf), excerpts:

Twelve Assumptions: (1) RDAP will be used; adios port 43; (2) Everyone will use; (3) ICANN is only path; (5) Credentials protected; (7) Unauthenticated queries via policy; (10) ICANN ensures validity of credentials; System must evolve/fit to… (4) Changes in data sets, rules; (6) Match normal RDAP usage; (8) Existing RDAP practices; (9) Pilot experience; (11) Policy choices; (12) Implementation practicalities.
Considerations, Risks, & Liability: 
Next steps:
  • ICANN64: Community input to be incorporated into the draft Technical Model;
  • March-April 2019: TSG-RD continues discussions to finalize Technical Model;
  • 23 April 2019: Final Technical Model published.

b. Domain Mondo's ICANN64 Photo Album:
Photo of Cherine Chalaby, ICANN Board Chair, at ICANN64
Cherine Chalaby, ICANN Board Chair
Photo of Goran Marby, ICANN President & CEO, at ICANN64
Goran Marby, ICANN President & CEO
Photo of Stephanie Perrin, NCSG Chair, EPDP Member at ICANN64
Stephanie Perrin, NCSG Chair, EPDP Member
Photo of Mark Svancarek, Microsoft, Business Constituency, EPDP Member, at ICANN64
Mark Svancarek, Microsoft, Business Constituency, EPDP Member
c. A New Cooperation and Governance Model for the Root Server System
ICANN64 session and presentation (pdf); see also RSSAC037 and RSSAC038. Summary: a new cooperation and governance model for the Root Server System (RSS) based on RSSAC037: • Root Server System Governance Board (SAPF); • Root Server System Standing Committee (PMMF); • Root Server Operator Review Panel (DRF); • ICANN org as Finance and Secretariat Functions.

d. GAC Communique (pdf)--Manal Ismail (Egypt) is GAC Chair for the term March 2019 - March 2021. Communique highlights:

CCWG-Accountability Work Stream 2: "... One intervention raised an issue on possible future steps that need to be taken in order to address the concerns regarding ICANN jurisdiction stated in the Jurisdiction Sub-Group Final Report and Recommendations, and expressed that this issue remains open and requires further consideration by GAC and ICANN Board. There are different views on this matter in the GAC.

Issues of Importance to the GAC: 1. Dot Amazon applications; 2. Two-Character Country Codes at the Second Level; 3. IGO Protections.

GAC Consensus Advice to ICANN Board:

•  WHOIS and Data Protection Legislation: The GAC advises the Board to: i. Take necessary steps to ensure that the GNSO EPDP on the Temporary Specification for gTLD Registration Data institutes concrete milestones, progress reports and an expeditious timeline, similar to Phase 1, for concluding Phase 2 activities; ii. Take necessary steps to ensure that the scope of phase 2 activities is clearly defined with a view to expeditious conclusion and implementation; iii. Make available the necessary resources for Phase 2 to expeditiously advance on the complex legal issues deferred from Phase 1; iv. Consider instituting additional parallel work efforts on technical implementations, such as that carried out by the Technical Study Group, for purposes of informing and complementing the EPDP’s Phase 2 activities; v. Facilitate swift implementation of the new Registration Directory Services policies as they are developed and agreed, including by sending distinct parts to implementation as and when they are agreed, such as the questions deferred from Phase 1; vi. Consider re-starting implementation processes for relevant existing policies, such as rhe Privacy Proxy Services Accreditation Issues Policy.

•  ICANN Board Consideration of the CCT Review Recommendations: The GAC notes with concern the recent Board resolution in response to the Final Recommendations of the Competition, Consumer Trust and Consumer Choice Review Team, which approved only 6 of 35 consensus recommendations. The GAC advises the Board to: i. Promptly meet with the CCT Review Team leadership to discuss the Board’s resolution; and ii. Possibly reconsider certain decisions on recommendations if appropriate.

•  Subsequent Rounds of New gTLDs: The GAC recalls its advice in the ICANN56 Helsinki Communiqué, which states that the development of policy on further releases of new gTLDs needs to fully consider all the results of the relevant reviews and analyses to determine which aspects and elements need adjustment. The GAC advised the Board to address and consider these results and concerns before proceeding with new rounds. 

The GAC will next meet during ICANN65 in Marrakech, Morocco24-27 June 2019.

e. EPDP Phase 2 (and Phase 1 Implementation)
EPDP (Phase 2) meetings will restart after new EPDP Chair appointed by GNSO Council (no later than 25 April 2019). More on EPDP at ICANN64 on last week's News Review.
At ICANN64, ICANN's Brad White interviewed GNSO Chair Keith Drazek and GNSO Council Liaison & EPDP Acting Chair Rafik Dammak about the Expedited Policy Development Process (EPDP).

f. ICANN64 Post-Meeting Report | ICANN.org. See also last week's News Review for more on ICANN64 including videos. Finally, a few ICANN64 Quick Takes:
  • Q1 2022 is a tentative possible date for next round new gTLDs application window to open.
  • Cathrin Bauer-Bulst (EU): DPAs [EU Data Protection Authorities] "cannot engage in this travel circus we’re engaged in. We need to do our homework and then consult them."
  • Opening Ceremony, Cherine Chalaby: "Our new vision for ICANN is to be a champion of the single, open and globally interoperable Internet and the trusted steward of the Internet's unique identifiers."
  • Public Forum 1, former ICANN Board member Bruce Tonkin: ICANN doesn’t prioritize processes. It does everything at once, and that means too many things are done poorly in parallel. We need to prioritize what’s most important at any one time and work on those few things well.
  • ICANN Governance session, former ICANN Board Chair Steve Crocker: "GDPR has taken over our attention span. We could have seen it coming years ago. We should have solved the privacy issues inherent in GDPR by ourselves way before GDPR. Those issues are fundamental ...  Something’s broken in our DNA that we wait to be pushed, and pushed hard, by external forces ..."

2) Other ICANN News
graphic "ICANN | Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers"
a. New gTLD .AMAZON: the ICANN Board "calls on the ACTO member states and the Amazon corporation to engage in a last effort that allows both parties over the next four (4) weeks to work in good faith toward a mutually acceptable solution regarding the Amazon Applications, and if one is reached, to inform the Board of that solution by 7 April 2019."--ICANN Board Resolution (pdf) March 10, 2019.

b. RPMs PDP Working Group Dysfunctions and ICANN Expected Standards of Behavior:
c.  ICANN terminated the Registrar Accreditation Agreement (RAA) with registrar Alpnames Limited (IANA #1857), effective immediately (March 15, 2019). "The RAA was terminated after the ICANN organization determined that Alpnames was no longer performing required registrar functions as specified in the agreement. These functions include allowing existing registrants to renew domain name registrations and processing new registrations." More here and notice of termination (pdf).

3) Names, Domains & Trademarks
graphic "Names, Domains & Trademarks" ©2017 DomainMondo.com
Photo of Elliot Noss, Tucows CEO, at ICANN64
Elliot Noss, Tucows CEO, at ICANN64
Tucows Inc. (NASDAQ: TCXFORM 10-K | Annual Report | sec.gov excerpt:
"We may not be able to maintain or improve our competitive position and may be forced to reduce our prices because of strong competition in the market for Internet services generally and domain name registration, in particular, which we expect will continue to intensify. Each registry and the ICANN regulatory body impose a charge upon the registrar for the administration of each domain registration. If these fees increase, this may have a significant impact upon our operating results. Regulation could reduce the value of Internet domain names or negatively impact the Internet domain acquisition process, which could significantly impair the value attributable to our acquisitions of Internet domain names."
4) ICYMI Internet Domain News 
graphic "ICYMI Internet Domain News" ©2017 DomainMondo.com
Facebook gives up on China?--“As we build our infrastructure around the world, we've chosen not to build data centers in countries that have a track record of violating human rights like privacy or freedom of expression."--Mark Zuckerberg in Facebook.com.

FTC v. Facebook: In the coming weeks, Joseph J. Simons, FTC Chair, and the FTC’s four other commissioners are expected to conclude an investigation into whether Facebook violated its promises to protect people’s data.--NYTimes.com. See also Facebook’s Data Deals Are Under Criminal Investigation--NYTimes.com.

“It is now abundantly clear that you have failed to be good stewards of your customers’ private location information"--US Senator Ron Wyden in his letter to AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and Verizon.

Privacy on iPhone (video):

Apple video above published Mar 14, 2019: "Your privacy matters. From encrypting your iMessage conversations, or not keeping a history of your routes in Maps, to limiting tracking across sites with Safari. iPhone is designed to protect your information."

The sun may be setting on the old privacy rulebook--"Europe is also heavily invested in the notice and consent approach, which forms the backbone of the General Data Protection Regulation  [GDPR] that went into effect last year and has become the de facto global standard"--axios.com.

5) Most Read this past week on DomainMondo.com: 
graphic "Domain Mondo" ©2017 DomainMondo.com

-- John Poole, Editor  Domain Mondo 

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2019-03-16

Tech Review 1) Extracting Huawei From Telecom Networks Impossible?

graphic "Tech Review" ©2017 DomainMondo.com
Tech Review (TR 2019-03-16)--Domain Mondo's weekly review of tech investing news: Features • 1) Extracting Huawei From Telecom Networks Impossible? 2) China's Headwinds, 3) Investing: The Week & Investor Notes: the Real Recovery vs Life Support, 4)ICYMI Tech News: Facebook, Google, Amazon, Apple, Turo, Boeing, GE.

1) Extracting Huawei From Telecom Networks Impossible?

Allies are under U.S. government pressure to shun China's Huawei, but Huawei's prevalence in existing telecom networks and dominance in 5G technology make that nearly impossible according to this video published Mar 11, 2019, by the Wall Street Journal (wsj.com).

2) China will face a lot of growth headwinds this year, analyst predicts

Le Xia, chief economist for Asia BBVA discusses the Chinese trade and economy outlook. CNBC International TV video above published Mar 4, 2019.

3) Investing
graphic: "INVESTING"  ©2017 DomainMondo.com
The Week: NASDAQ Composite +3.8% | S&P 500 Index +2.9% | DJIA +1.6%
Wall Street's Charging Bull:
graphic of Charging Bull | DomainMondo.com
Investor Notes: the Real Recovery vs Life Support
 Effective Federal Funds Rate--Above: Jul 1954 - Feb 2019. Below: Feb, 2009 - Feb 2019.
Source: https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/FEDFUNDS. Editor's note: "real recovery" (Fed Funds rate >.50%) started December 2016 after the election of Donald Trump (before then Janet Yellen kept rates too low, for too long, and was doing everything she could to "help" Hillary during election year 2016). The Eurozone (ECB) is still on "life support." The UK (Bank of England) left "life support" in 2018.

Reads of the Week:

Store of value--A 2018 research paper from the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago estimates that 60 percent of all U.S. bills and almost 80 percent of all $100 bills are now overseas. That's up from 15 to 30 percent around 1980, according to research from Federal Reserve Board economist Ruth Judson. She found that economic and political instability contribute to this demand--cnbc.com.

Consequences of “Leaving Interest Rates Very Low for a Long Time”--Bank of Canada Governor Poloz--A litany of problems, from too much debt to deflating housing bubbles in Vancouver and Toronto--wolfstreet.com.

Three Things You Should Know About the Great Recession--aier.org: it was preceded by monetary expansion, exacerbated by monetary contraction, and resulted in a radical change to the day-to-day conduct of monetary policy.

“Exceptional performance has to come from diverging from the crowd”--Howard Marks

4) ICYMI Tech News:
graphic: "ICYMI Tech News" ©2017 DomainMondo.com
  • Facebook and Google--today, over 70 percent of traffic is dominated by those two platforms--The Death of the Internet | zerohedge.com.
  • Amazon: It Looks Like Day 2--seekingalpha.comAmazon's massive opportunities in first-party eCommerce, Third-Party Services, AWS, and Advertising should warrant Amazon's full attention. It's time for the king of online to get back to its roots and drop its Whole Foods acquisition in the recycle bin--seekingalpha.com.
  • Apple has $245 billion in cash on hand, up from $237.1 billion reported at the end of FY2018. See also: Spotify's antitrust complaint against Apple with the European Commission claims App Store rules limit choice and stifle competition--musically.com. See also EU antitrust authority considering Apple probe.
  • Antitrust & Big Tech--US Senator Elizabeth Warren proposes breaking up Amazon, Google, and Facebook, as part of her 2020 Presidential campaign platform. 
  • Disintermediation: Hertz Is One Recession Away From Bankruptcy--While we can argue that Lyft and Uber might not be direct competitors, it is absolutely undeniable that every Turo  (Domain: turo.com) transaction represents a transaction lost by traditional rental car companies--zerohedge.com.
  • Boeing 737 Max: Pilots, FAA knew there was a problem with the Boeing 737 Max 8, licensed commercial pilot says.
  • GE shares plummet after CEO Culp said the company was beginning to "embrace our reality." Remember when companies engaged in due diligence before they pursued multi billion deals?
  • Personal Tech: Microsoft Windows 10 Home edition users baffled by updates--zdnet.com. Editor's note: just get a Chromebook.

-- John Poole, Editor, Domain Mondo  

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DISCLAIMER

2019-03-15

Brexit Madness - UK PM Theresa May to Ask EU for Brexit Delay (video)

Time Left Until Brexit, London time: 11:00 P.M., Friday, 12 Apr 2019 

Original Countdown to Brexit: 11:00 pm UK time on Friday, 29 March 2019

UPDATES:
March 21 update: May dashes to salvage Brexit deal in Brussels (video); Arriving in Brussels on Thursday for an EU summit, Mrs. May did not rule out leaving the European Union without a deal reports news.sky.com which also reports EU leaders agreed to extend the March 29th deadline to Apil 12. The deadline would be extended to May 22 only if UK MPs pass the prime minister's Brexit deal by the end of next week.

See also "... The faltering and badly drafted [UK Prime Minister's] letter to Mr Tusk is unacceptable, asking as it does for a delay of three months in our exit from the EU ... I agree some MPs have been delaying Brexit as the PM says. These MPs clearly include the Prime Minister herself who has wasted far too much time on a negotiation and Agreement which the public rejects massively. The latest poll shows just 14% support  for Mrs May’s Agreement."--johnredwoodsdiary.com.

March 20: EU ultimatum to May: you can only delay Brexit if deal is passed

Channel 4 News video above published March 20, 2019: UK Prime Minister Theresa May has ruled out a long extension to Brexit while she is Prime Minister. See also the Prime Minister's statement (video) later in the day on Wednesday, March 20, 2010. See also: May's Letter Asking for Only Short Extension Came as Shock to EU--"EU officials say they see the risk of a looming catastrophe and the mood in Brussels is bleak as they realize that May has backed them into a corner too."--bloomberg.com.

March 20, 2019: UK Prime Minister Theresa May requests three-month Brexit extension--"I am therefore writing to inform the European Council that the UK is seeking an extension to the Article 50 period under Article 50(3) of the Treaty on European Union, including as applied by Article 106a of the Euratom Treaty, until 30 June 2019." --Letter in full here. See also Newspaper headlines: May's 'blame game' Brexit speech to nation | bbc.com.

But European Council President Donald Tusk said an extension would only be granted if MPs back the Prime Minister's Withdrawal Agreement next week. Three things could happen now: 1) no-deal Brexit, 2) May's 'deal' is somehow voted on yet again and passes,  or 3) UK revokes Article 50.  After Donald Tusk spoke, the UK pound sterling (GBP) fell, an indication that markets think there is now a greater chance of no-deal Brexit, but the London Stock Exchange benchmarks FTSE100 and FTSE250 have been resilient:
FTSE100
FTSE250
March 19, 2019: EU's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier: "Everyone should now finalise all preparations for a no-deal scenario" ... UK MPs "voting against no-deal does not prevent it  happening." See also France ready to veto any meaningless Brexit delay: Elysee official--reuters.com: "French officials say in private that they are not alone in their stance but that they are more willing than other countries to stick their necks out because Britain will always blame the French for their misfortunes."
France’s EU minister Nathalie Loiseau named her cat ‘Brexit’ because ‘he meows loudly to be let out each morning, but then refuses to go outside when she opens the door.’
March 18, 2019: House of Commons Speaker John Bercow told MPs he would not allow PM Theresa May to ask the Commons to vote a third time if the motion hadn't changed. The announcement took the government by surprise--Channel 4 News video.

March 18, 2019: A 'Hard" a/k/a 'No Deal' Brexit will benefit UK and emerging markets, says Mark Mobius, founding partner of Mobius Capital Partners. He also says he fears a soft Brexit will prohibit the U.K.'s economic potential, video below:

Ignore the nay-sayers – here’s why we’re still on course for a clean Brexit on 29th March: "MPs are not fearful of a weak unimaginative Government desperate to push through a failed deal. Parliament does not want to re-join the EU, it does not want a referendum. It cannot ask for an extension to implement the deal if MPs don’t want the deal. And nobody could stomach another drawn-out negotiation going on for potentially years and the imminent prospect of European Elections, manifestos, campaigns and all that comes with them. Once you have eliminated all the alternatives, the conclusion is staring you in the face – the UK will leave on 29th March and take back control"--Christopher Howarth | BrexitCentral.com.

Original post March 15, 2019:
The UK Government and UK Politicians Have Made A Shambolic Mess of Brexit (and the UK civil service is complicit)
Analysis and Opinion by the Editor:
The House of Commons ended its voting on a flurry of Brexit-related motions this week with one more humiliation and embarrassment for the hapless government formed by Prime Minister Theresa May--going back to Brussels and pleading for the EU (via its 27 other members) to agree to an extension of the Brexit date of March 29, 2019, a date May and her UK government chose following the Brexit referendum results of June 23, 2016.

Wherever you live, and whatever you may think of your own national government or its politicians, pity the poor British--Brexit outside the bubble: How do the British think Brexit is going?--UK Channel 4 News video published Mar 14, 2019, indicates how all this latest Brexit chaos is being seen by people who are not obsessives confined to the Westminster bubble.

Unless the British get lucky and get a quick exit from the EU by default on March 29, 2019, their economy will likely soon "tank" due to the continual uncertainty,  the UK government having chosen a no-man's land of "neither in nor out" of the dysfunctional European Union (EU) which is already entering its own economic recession--Italy is already there, Germany and France are not far behind despite renewed "easing" by the European Central Bank (ECB)--see Euro falls as Eurozone growth forecasts slashed | cityam.com: "European Central Bank (ECB) president Mario Draghi today announced a significant downgrade in Eurozone growth predictions as he renewed a stimulus programme of cheap loans to bolster the struggling economy." (March 7, 2019)

It appears a majority in the House of Commons prefer to drown with bureaucrats in Brussels and EU member states trapped in the Eurozone, rather than swim to safety and a world full of opportunities. This is Dunkirk all over again, but the boats aren't coming this time. Don't expect even the Almighty to help those who refuse to help themselves.
Regarding Brexit, the single biggest issue gripping the U.K. is indecisionCitadel (citadel.com) billionaire founder Ken Griffin said. “Until they pick a path, it deters capital investment. Politicians don’t appreciate when they create uncertainty it kills the willingness to invest.
President Trump Meets with the Prime Minister of Ireland

U.S. President Donald Trump and Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar discuss Brexit at a press conference at the White House, March 14, 2019. Trump: "The European Union treats us very unfairly." 

UK Channel 4 News recap video of March 14, 2019, in the House of Commons: "May wins vote to seek Brexit delay"-- "In a narrow Commons victory this evening the government fought off an attempt by MPs to take control of Brexit in Parliament. Instead, Theresa May has presented a stark choice to MPs: back her deal in another vote next week - or risk a long delay to Brexit - and even the possibility of having to hold European elections in May. MPs are now expected to have a third meaningful vote on Brexit next week. That's just before Theresa May heads off to Brussels for what is currently set to be the last European summit with a British Prime Minister at the table."

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