Connect with us

Government

8 Best Media Stocks to Buy

When it comes to media stocks and social media stocks, this list has some of the best investing opportunities for your portfolio.
The post 8 Best Media Stocks to Buy appeared first on Investment U.

Published

on

The word “media” is defined as “the main means of mass communication (broadcasting, publishing and the internet) regarded collectively.” Since the way that people communicate and consume information is always shifting, this means that what can be defined as a media stock is constantly shifting as well.

With that being said, I’ve come up with a list of eight media stocks and social media stocks that may be worth adding to your portfolio.

Let’s take a quick look at the best media stocks to buy…

Best Media Stocks to Buy

NOTE: I’m not a financial advisor and am just offering my own research and commentary. Please do your own due diligence before making any investment decisions.

Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX)

When talking about stocks that completely redefined an industry, Netflix is usually one of the most common companies to reference. In 2007, Netflix essentially put Blockbuster out of business by announcing that its users will be able to stream content directly from their TV, laptop or cell phone. Since 2007, its stock has exploded from $3 per share to over $600 per share. This is an increase of over 18,000%.

Based on its own success, it correctly predicted that other companies may try to copy them and would pull its content from Netflix’s site. To combat this, Netflix has created originals like The Queen’s Gambit, Stranger Things and The Witcher which have helped the company stay relevant once fan favorites like The Office got yanked for other streaming platforms.

It’s true that Netflix faces much more competition today than it did over the past decade. The Streaming Wars are in full swing and a few companies that compete with Netflix today are:

  • Disney+
  • Hulu
  • HBO Max
  • Paramount+
  • Prime Video
  • Peacock
  • AppleTV Plus

However, this has not necessarily slowed down Netflix’s business. Netflix has reported growing revenues of 29.6% on average over the past five years. In 2020, it posted total revenue of $25 billion and a net income of $2.76 billion. It currently has about 209 million Netflix subscribers (about ⅔ of the United States population).

Despite steep competition, Netflix will likely continue to enjoy an “early mover” advantage. By this, I mean that most people have already had a Netflix subscription for years. Since no streaming service is going to have everything viewers want, most people will probably just keep their Netflix subscription and add other platforms.

Netflix stock was up about 60% in 2020 and is up roughly 500% over the past five years.

AMC (NYSE: AMC)

The next stock on this list of media stocks to buy is AMC. It’s the parent company of AMC, IFC and WeTV. These days, you probably recognize AMC as one of the most talked-about tickers on the Reddit group WallStreetBets. This also classifies AMC as a so-called “meme stock.” Depending on the type of investor you are, this either makes you want to buy as many shares as possible or run as far away as you can.

It’s true that AMC was involved in a targeted short squeeze earlier in the year. The price shot up 2,600% in a matter of weeks. It’s also true that COVID-19 crippled AMC’s business while pouring rocket fuel on Netflix. If you’re AMC, it’s impossible to make any money when it’s illegal for people to visit your theaters. This is probably the main reason that it lost over $4.5 billion in 2020.

However, I’m still bullish on AMC and movie theaters in general.

I don’t necessarily have any stats to support this argument, but I’m a believer that people love the movies-theater experience. No matter how much cheaper and easier a streaming service is, it just doesn’t compare to going to the theater.

For me growing up, there was nothing better than getting together with friends and family. We’d sitt with 150 or so strangers in a dark room to share in the movie-going experience. When it came to epic movies like Harry Potter, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Dark Knight or The Avengers, people would literally dress up as characters. They would go at midnight to see them the minute they came out. No streaming service is ever going to have this same energy.

With that said, AMC was only squeaking by on profit margins of 2-3% before the pandemic. I think that the most likely future for AMC is that it’ll be acquired by a major streaming service who will then offer their original content in theaters. There was speculation earlier in the year that Amazon was going to acquire it but these rumors fell flat.

On the bright side, AMC has weathered the worst of the pandemic and now has a fresh surge of capital from the Reddit short squeeze. This will give it time to plan its next strategic move.

AMC stock was down about 60% in 2020 and climbed roughly 100% during the past five years (mainly due to the Reddit short squeeze). This is one of the more volatile media stocks on this list.

ViacomCBS (Nasdaq: VIACA)

In 2019, ViacomCBS emerged after the merger of CBS and Viacom. It’s one of the biggest traditional media companies and are reportedly in the process of getting into the streaming game (better late than never!).

Its revenues have stayed stagnant for the past several years. However, don’t let that fool you. In 2020, it posted total revenue of $25 billion and a net income of $2.42 billion. This puts it on par with Netflix in terms of income. Viacom also has a much lengthier list of assets compared to most companies. These include:

  • Paramount Pictures
  • CBS Entertainment
  • MTV, Comedy Central
  • Nickelodeon
  • Showtime
  • BET

It also owns organizations associated with any of the above. Some of its most popular shows are SpongeBob, iCarly and Paw Patrol.

ViacomCBS’ stock was down roughly 10% in 2020 and about 15% over the past five years.

Disney (NYSE: DIS)

Note: I own a small position in Disney

If ever there was media stock to own, it’s The Mouse. After a handful of acquisitions over the past few years, Disney owns just about everything that you love.

A few of its assets include:

  • Walt Disney Animation
  • FX, Hulu
  • National Geographic
  • ABC
  • Pixar
  • ESPN (including Monday Night Football)
  • Marvel
  • Lucasfilm (Star Wars)
  • 20th Century Studios

This doesn’t even get into its 12 Walt Disney World Parks across the world, two water parks and four cruise ships.

The thing that makes Disney so formidable is its unique ability to promote media across so many different platforms. For example, it profits from a popular character like Baby Yoda in plenty of ways. They can give him his own show on Disney Plus, feature him in any of their parks, create plush dolls to sell, use him to promote new Star Wars movies, or even feature him in a crossover show with The Simpsons if they wanted.

Disney’s latest push has been Disney+, which currently has about 116 million subscribers after just two years. Across Hulu, ESPN+ and Disney+ it has nearly 174 million subscribers. For comparison, Netflix has about 209 million.

The Mouse posted total revenue of $65 billion in 2020 but actually posted a net loss of $2.86 billion. This was partially due to its theme parks being closed for most of the year.

Disney stock was up about 20% in 2020 and is up around 100% over the past five years.

Playboy (Nasdaq: PLBY)

The last of the traditional media stocks to buy is Playboy. If you didn’t realize that Playboy was a public company, that’s because it just went public via SPAC at the end of 2020.

Playboy is not nearly the company that Disney, Netflix or Viacom are. If anything, it’s more like AMC. It’s been struggling to retain readers for years and if there was ever a company to fall prey to “cancel culture” it’s probably Playboy.

With that said, Playboy could actually be at the beginning of a turnaround story. I say this because the Playboy brand is still one of the most recognizable in the world. Even if you’ve never flipped through a magazine there’s still a very good chance that you recognize the bunny silhouette.

The company published an investor relations report in March 2021, which had a few interesting points:

  • It has 97% unaided brand awareness
  • It wants to become known more as a “sexual wellness” company and has made a few acquisitions to make this possible. It predicts this market will be worth $400 billion by 2024.
  • It posted total revenue of $147 million in 2020 which was an 89% increase from 2019.
  • It wants to expand its art offerings, including NFTs.

It just received a fresh infusion of cash from going public to make this happen. Its stock is up close to 150% since going public.

Forbes Is Coming to the Market

One last media stock to buy…Forbes has announced that it’s going public via SPAC with Magnum Opus Acquisition. This deal is still being finalized and will finance Forbes with $145 million. If you’re interested in keeping an eye on this, Forbes will trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol FRBS.

Finally, the line has officially been blurred between traditional media and social media. By this, I mean that these two mediums have somewhat become interchangeable.

For example, former President Donald Trump got into the habit of just tweeting out his immediate thoughts on issues, instead of waiting for a scheduled press conference. Due to this, Twitter and other social media networks have started to be seen as sources of news, information and communication.

Now, we’re going to look at two social media stocks to buy but it’s worth noting that social media companies are facing pressure from lots of different directions. There are data privacy issues, allegations of fake news and tensions between politicians. Keep these in mind before buying into a social media stock.

These are two social media stocks to buy…

Twitter (NYSE: TWTR)

Of all the social media stocks, Twitter has had the toughest time finding its groove in terms of things that investors like to see. This means that it has had trouble maintaining consistent user growth and profitability. It posted a profit of $1.47 billion in 2019 but then a loss of $1.14 billion in 2020.

Its most recent product announcement is a new feature known as “Super Follow.” This will allow people to earn revenue from Twitter by charging a small fee for premium content.

With that being said, Twitter also has a reputation for being the quickest mode of getting news updates. The second a story breaks, it’s usually shared on Twitter before Facebook, Instagram,  TikTok or Snapchat. This is incredibly valuable and shows that Twitter has top-of-mind awareness among its users.

Twitter is also run by CEO Jack Dorsey who is also the CEO of Square and has a good track record.

Its stock was up about 60% in 2020 and is up over 200% over the past five years.

Facebook (Nasdaq: $FB)

Facebook needs little introduction as it’s the biggest social media site in the world. It has about 2.7 billion users and also owns Instagram (one billion users) and WhatsApp (two billion users). This makes it the largest community of people ever created.

It generated a whopping $86 billion in revenue in 2020 as well as a profit of $29 billion. Even though this company has been around for some time, these numbers still represented an impressive 21% and 50% increase from 2019, respectively.

Facebook’s stock was up about 30% in 2020 and is up close to 200% over the past five years. It’s also one of the FAANG stocks. Click on that link to learn more about those tech giants.

Investing in Media Stocks, ETFs and Beyond

Looking for a social media ETF to buy? Try the Global X Social Media ETF.

Some of our younger readers might be quick to point out that TikTok is arguably today’s most popular social media site. Unfortunately, TikTok is owned by the Chinese company ByteDance, which is privately owned. Currently, there’s no way to buy stock in TikTok.

I hope that you’ve found this list of the best media stocks to buy to be valuable! As usual, all investment decisions should be based on your own due diligence and risk tolerance.

If you’re looking for more investing opportunities, consider signing up for Liberty Through Wealth below. It’s a free e-letter that’s packed with tips and tricks. You’ll hear directly from bestselling author and investment expert Alexander Green. He’s also worked as an investment advisor, research analyst and portfolio manager on Wall Street for 16 years.

The post 8 Best Media Stocks to Buy appeared first on Investment U.

Read More

Continue Reading

Government

China Syndrome? Is Evergrande A Symptom Of Deeper Malaise

China Syndrome? Is Evergrande A Symptom Of Deeper Malaise

Authored by Bill Blain via MorningPorridge.com,

“If that’s true, we are very close to the China Syndrome ”

Evergrande’s imminent default is rocking markets – but few believe…

Published

on

China Syndrome? Is Evergrande A Symptom Of Deeper Malaise

Authored by Bill Blain via MorningPorridge.com,

“If that’s true, we are very close to the China Syndrome ”

Evergrande’s imminent default is rocking markets – but few believe the collapse of a Chinese property developer could trigger a global financial crisis. What if Evergrande is just a symptom of a deeper malaise within the Chinese economy and its political/business structures? Maybe there is more at stake than we realise? What if Emperor Xi decides he needs a distraction?

Amid this week's market turbulence, and the overnight headlines, Evergrande dominates thinking this morning. The early headlines say the risk is “easing”. Don’t be fooled. S&P are on the wires saying it’s on the brink of default and is unlikely to get govt support. It’s Asia’s largest junk-bond issuer. Anyone for the last few choc-ices then?

The market view on the coming Evergrande “event” is mixed. Some analysts are dismissing it as an internal “China event”, others reckon there may be some systemic risk but one Government can easily address. There is some speculation about “lessons” to be learnt… There are even China supporters who reckon its proof of robust China capitalism – the right to fail is a positive!

I’ve got a darker perspective.

The massive shifts we’ve seen in China’s political/business public persona over the past few years have been variously ascribed: a reaction to Trump’s protectionism, China taking its place as a leading nation, Xi flexing his military muscle, and now a clampdown on divisive wealthy businesses to promote common prosperity.

What if Evergrande is just a symptom of something much deeper?

That that last 30-years of runaway Chinese growth has resulted in a deepening internal crisis, one that we barely perceive in the west? What if the excesses that have spawned Evergrande and the illusion every Chinese can afford luxury flats and a western standard of living is about to implode? Crashing oriental minor chords!

The looming Chinese property debacle will be fascinating, but it many respects will be similar and yet very different to the multiple market unwinds we’ve seen in the west. How it plays out will have all kinds of implications for growth, speculation and how global investors perceive China in the future. Folk are variously describing it as China’s Lehman Brothers, or the next “Minsky Moment” when speculation ends with a sharp jab of reality to the kidneys.

I’m thinking back to a story I read a few years ago about the Shanghai Auto-fair pre-pandemic. Evergrande New Electric Vehicles had the largest stand and was showing off 11 different EVs. Not one of these were actually available to buy – they were all models of as-yet unproduced cars. The company was valued at billions and yet never sold a single vehicle. This morning, it’s just another worthless business Evergrande is trying to flog. (See this story on Bloomberg TV: China’s Zombie EV Makers.)

The market is asking itself a host of questions about Evergrande’s collapse: How bad will its tsunami of Chinese contagion deluge global markets? When it’s going to happen? What knock-on effects will cascade through markets?

Perhaps the most important question is: Who will be exposed “swimming naked” when the Evergrande tide goes out? Who will be left with the biggest losses? As the company is definitely bust, these losses rather depend on just how China’s authorities respond.

Step back and think about it a moment – try putting these in context:

  • Fundamentally all business is about identifying a consumer need and filling it.

  • Fundamentally, greedy businessmen tend to get carried away because the political-financial system enables them.

  • Fundamentally, it’s just another burst bubble and who cleans up the mess.

  • In Evergrande’s case a thousand flowers of capitalism with Chinese characteristics grew into an unsustainable business – fundamentally no different from debt-fuelled sub-prime mortgages, or CDOs cubed, in the West.

The big difference this time is its China! China has done things… differently. The path China pursued in its recovery and growth since 1980 has not been without… consequences.

Thus far we’ve praised China for its spectacular growth and the creation of valuable companies under the red banner of Chinese capitalism. It is going to be “interesting” to see how the subsequent mess is cleared out. Questions about Moral Hazard are going to be shockingly simple – Government has made it abundantly clear that any wrongdoing by company executives will be punished in the harshest possible way.

More importantly, Chinese politics and business works on a very different playing field to the west. Forget the rule of law or the T&C’s of Evergrande bonds. It easy to dismiss and characterise the way Chinese business works as institutionalised systemic corruption – but it’s a system Ancient Roman Emperors would recognise as a patron/client relationship. Emperor Xi’s clients and his princelings will continue to benefit from his patronage in return for their support at his court, and will be protected in a meltdown. The system Xi presides over will have little motivation to intervene to protect western investors who find themselves caught in the Evergrande fiasco.

Where Xi will have to take notice is outside the rich, wealthy princeling cadre which increasingly owns and runs China. There will be massive implications for wealth/inequality among the Chinese people from a property collapse. With a third of Chinese GDP dependent on the property sector, (and about 4 million jobs at Evergrande), the collapse of one of the biggest players, and the likelihood others will follow is much more than just a systemic risk.

Property is a key metric in the aspirations to wealth of the rising Chinese middle classes. The same smaller Chinese investors and savers will likely prove the largest losers from the property investment schemes they were sucked into. These real losses will rise if hidden bank exposures trigger a domestic banking crisis – which apparently isn’t likely (meaning it is..). There are reports of investor protests in key China cities – putting pressure on the govt to act to mitigate personal losses.

Xi’s clampdown on big tech is painted as the Party’s programme to engineer a more socially-equal economy. He has pinned the blame for rising inequality on “corrupt” business practices and has his cadre’s waving books on Xi thought, mouthing slogans about “common prosperity” and “frugality”. These are going to look increasingly hollow if the middle classes bear the coming Evergrande pain, and the Party Princelings continue to prosper.

The really big risk in China is not that Evergrande is going to default – it’s much bigger. If the Party is seen to fail in its promise to deliver wealth, jobs and prosperity for the masses – then that is very serious. China’s host of failed EV companies, an economy still reliant on exporting other nations tech, and a massively overvalued property sector (that the masses still equate with prosperity) all suggest a much less solid economy than the Party promotes.

If the illusion of a strong economy is unravelling – who knows what happens next, but in Ancient Rome the answer would be simple… Blame someone else, and invade..

This could get very “interesting…” and not in a good way.

Tyler Durden Wed, 09/22/2021 - 08:45

Read More

Continue Reading

Government

White House Reporters Have Launched ‘Formal Objection’ About Biden Refusing To Answer Questions

White House Reporters Have Launched ‘Formal Objection’ About Biden Refusing To Answer Questions

Authored by Steve Watson via Summit News,

CBS News reported Tuesday that the press pool of White House reporters have launched a formal objection

Published

on

White House Reporters Have Launched 'Formal Objection' About Biden Refusing To Answer Questions

Authored by Steve Watson via Summit News,

CBS News reported Tuesday that the press pool of White House reporters have launched a formal objection over the fact that Joe Biden refuses to answer any questions, with reporters routinely being yelled down and physically pushed away by Biden’s handlers.

The revelation came after an embarrassing scene in the Oval Office with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson answering questions, but Biden not being allowed to by aides.

Watch:

Johnson took the three questions from British reporters

CBS reporter Ed O’Keefe said that “Johnson took 3 questions. White House aides shouted down U.S. attempts to ask questions. I asked Biden about southern border and we couldn’t decipher what he said.”

CBS radio correspondent Steve Portnoy later reported that “The entire editorial component of the US pool went immediately into Jen Psaki’s office to register a formal complaint that no American reporters were recognized for questions in the president’s Oval Office.”

Portnoy, also president of the White House Correspondents Association, added that the complaint also extended to the fact “that wranglers loudly shouted over the president as he seemed to give an answer to Ed O’Keefe’s question about the situation at the Southern Border. Biden’s answer could not be heard over the shouting.”

“Psaki was unaware that the incident has occurred and suggested that she was not  in a position to offer an immediate solution,” Portnoy continued, adding “Your pooler requested a press conference. Psaki suggested the president takes questions several times a week.”

In addition, National Review notes that after Biden’s UN speech yesterday, French reporter Kethevane Gorjestani “was asked by a very startled Australian reporter whether WH wranglers were always so strict about ushering the pool out without questions.”

The pathetic display is a continuation of the way Biden’s handlers have been acting since even before he took office, shooing away reporters, giving Biden strict instructions on who he can take questions from, and even muting his mic when he goes off script.

A week ago, Republican Senator James Risch demanded to know who is in charge of controlling when the President is allowed to be heard, noting during a Senate hearing that “This is a puppeteer act, if you would, and we need to know who’s in charge and who is making the decisions.”

“Somebody in the White House has authority to press the button and stop the president, cut off the president’s speaking ability and sound. Who is that person?” Risch asked.

Tweeting out the video, leftists insisted the claims were ‘bizarre,’ ‘ridiculous’ and ‘absurd’:

*  *  *

Brand new merch now available! Get it at https://www.pjwshop.com/

In the age of mass Silicon Valley censorship It is crucial that we stay in touch. We need you to sign up for our free newsletter here. Support our sponsor – Turbo Force – a supercharged boost of clean energy without the comedown. Also, we urgently need your financial support here.

Tyler Durden Wed, 09/22/2021 - 10:15

Read More

Continue Reading

Spread & Containment

Addressing the HIV epidemic in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

Working in partnership will be key, says Alex Kalomparis, vice president, public affairs, international at Gilead Sciences. 2021
The post Addressing the HIV epidemic in Eastern Europe and Central Asia appeared first on .

Published

on

Working in partnership will be key, says Alex Kalomparis, vice president, public affairs, international at Gilead Sciences.

2021 marks 40 years since the first cases of HIV were reported. In that time, over 79 million people have been diagnosed with HIV, with more than 36 million dying from AIDS-related illnesses, more than any other infectious disease.

While there has been incredible progress in the HIV response, nearly 38 million people are living with HIV, with more than a million new cases every year, jeopardising the goal to end AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.

HIV places enormous burdens on the communities it affects most, straining health systems and government budgets. In the era of the global COVID-19 pandemic, where health systems are already stretched to breaking, it is tempting to cut costs in other areas, including HIV. If commitment to the HIV response wanes, the progress we have made is at risk, leading to increases in new infections in regions that can least afford to tackle them.

“An epidemic somewhere is an epidemic everywhere”

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen the temptation to focus on one’s own backyard, isolate oneself from the rest of the world, and believe one is safe and protected. We know now that this protection is an illusion. Regardless of the protections we erect in our own countries, allowing public health crises to persist in other parts of the world threatens our own progress and safety.

The message is clear: an epidemic somewhere is an epidemic everywhere. To find our way out of a pandemic, we must broaden our ideas of how to respond, and address the problems and inequities that allow diseases to thrive in other parts of the world. To be effective, our response must be global.

The same is true for HIV. HIV has persisted for 40 years, and is still here because root problems continue to drive the epidemic: stigma and discrimination, poverty, lack of access to services and treatments, lack of access to education, and the marginalisation of the people and communities most at risk of HIV. These are not issues that can be addressed by any one government, group, or company. They can be addressed only in partnership with one another, and by engaging those key marginalised communities in our effort to end the HIV epidemic.

Whilst the global community has the tools it needs to meaningfully address new HIV infections, HIV is on the rise in Eastern Europe and Central Asia (EECA). Unlike other regions in the world, rates of HIV in EECA have increased, with infections up by 72 per cent, and AIDS-related deaths up by 24 per cent since 2010.

Working with the Elton John AIDS Foundation

However, across EECA, a range of community partners are making significant contributions in the fight against HIV, such as the first wave of the RADIAN ‘Unmet Need’ fund and Model City grantees, previously announced in 2020. In the first nine months of the programme, these partners have already reached more than 12,000 people from vulnerable communities directly with services, initiating life-saving care in over 2,000 people living with HIV.

RADIAN, a ground-breaking partnership between Gilead Sciences and the Elton John AIDS Foundation, works with local experts to target new HIV infections and deaths from AIDS-related illnesses in EECA in the communities most vulnerable to HIV.

Focusing on the groups most affected by HIV in EECA (eg men who have sex with men, transgender people, sex workers, and people who use drugs), RADIAN engages with groups led by these communities and are sensitive to the difficulties unique to the region.

“We all have one common goal: ending HIV”

Anne Aslett, CEO of the Elton John AIDS Foundation, is clear that for the partnership to reach its goals, it’s crucial to listen to and amplify the voices of people for whom HIV is a tangible, daily reality.

“They understand better than anyone the challenges associated with the virus, and what works to stop it. No matter where we are in the world, we must partner with them, and follow their leadership. We are proud of our RADIAN partnership with Gilead, to champion the vital work of communities to bring an end to the AIDS epidemic in Eastern Europe and Central Asia.”

Companies like Gilead Sciences provide industry leading expertise, while Governments bring an understanding of health systems and funding, developing an infrastructure that enables access.

However, these efforts need community leadership because they know best how to ensure people can access those systems to get tested, and adhere to medication. They understand the fears and sensitivities, the strengths and stigma within those communities, the nuances that make the difference in linking their members to the care they need. No two regions of the world experience the ‘same’ HIV epidemic. People living with HIV are critical to the success of any HIV response.

This autumn, RADIAN will launch a campaign telling the inspirational stories of ordinary, yet remarkable, community members who are taking action to turn the tide of the HIV epidemic in EECA.

We all have one common goal: ending HIV. It is crucial that we all understand the role we can play to achieve this. Our access to global networks of public health expertise, government funding, and innovative HIV treatments are meaningless unless they are used in service of people living with, and at risk of, HIV. They are the core of any successful response, regardless of country or region. Working in partnership with them is the key to ending HIV. By respecting them as leaders and giving them the seat at the head of the table, we make our work more effective and responsive to local needs, bringing us closer to the end of the HIV epidemic globally.

About the author 

Alex Kalomparis is vice president, public affairs, international at Gilead Sciences. He joined the company in January 2017 and is responsible for all communications and patient advocacy activities across Africa, Asia, Australia, Canada, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East. Prior to that Alex held senior communication roles with a number of consumer and pharmaceutical companies, including Unilever, Rolls Royce, Novartis, Roche, AstraZeneca and GlaxoSmithKline.

The post Addressing the HIV epidemic in Eastern Europe and Central Asia appeared first on .

Read More

Continue Reading

Trending