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Top Gaming Stocks To Buy Now? 4 Names To Watch

Is the robust growth of the gaming industry sustainable?
The post Top Gaming Stocks To Buy Now? 4 Names To Watch appeared first on Stock Market News, Quotes, Charts and Financial Information | StockMarket.com.

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Are These The Best Gaming Stocks To Buy For Long-Term Gains?

It is without question that gaming stocks have been one of the bigger winners in the stock market during the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic has helped many gaming companies to reach record profits as customers opted for digital solutions, which aids in the reduction of additional expenses like manufacturing and distribution. However, with the economy reopening and people starting to step outdoors, there may be concerns if the gaming industry could sustain its robust growth.  

One should note that the gaming industry is no longer a niche for certain age groups. Given how mobile gaming and improvements to hardware used in games these days, gaming has become a viable form of entertainment for all age groups. Just look at the PlayStation 5 from Sony Group Corp (NYSE: SONY) which has been in high demand since its release back in November 2020. Even up to date, it appears that there is still a limited supply. Therefore, it is safe to assume that gaming has crept into most people’s lives and will continue to be a form of leisure. So, would a list of some of the top gaming stocks in the stock market today interest you? 

Top Gaming Stocks To Buy [Or Sell] Right Now

Electronic Arts Inc

First, we have one of the gaming juggernauts, Electronic Arts (EA). Essentially, the company develops, markets, publishes and distributes games, content, and services. Its games and services can be accessed through a range of platforms, including consoles, personal computers (PCs), mobile phones, and tablets. Some of its most popular games would include FIFA, The Sims Series, Apex Legends, and Need for Speed Series.  

video game stocks to buy now (EA stock)

In May, the company announced the acquisition of Metalhead Software, a Canada-based video game studio, and developer of the fan-favorite Super Mega Baseball franchise. This partnership is aimed towards growing the Super Mega Baseball franchise and developing new gaming experiences for players worldwide. This is one of its latest growth and expansion plans for the company which already includes EA SPORTS College Football, EA SPORTS PGA TOUR, and the F1 franchise now published by EA SPORTS through EA’s Codemasters acquisition.  

The company also announced its preliminary financial results for its fiscal fourth quarter and full-year ended March 31, 2021. Net bookings for fiscal 2021 were $6.19 billion, up by 15%. Furthermore, it delivered 13 new games and had more than 42 million new players join its network. EA was able to deliver a strong financial report despite facing challenges posed by the global pandemic. With all these in mind, would you consider buying EA stock? 

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Activision Blizzard, Inc 

For gaming enthusiasts, Blizzard needs no introduction. However, for those who are new to the scene, this company is a developer and publisher of interactive entertainment content and services. Similar to EA, its content is accessible across various gaming platforms. Have you heard of Candy Crush, World of Warcraft, and Call Of Duty? Well, they all belong to Blizzard along with many other popular games. 

top entertainment stocks to watch (ATVI)

During its first quarter, revenue came in at $2.07 billion, beating estimates of $1.78 billion. Activision Blizzard reported $0.84 per share earnings, topping analyst’s estimates of $0.70 per share. Since its announcement back in May, ATVI stock has risen over 8% to date. It’s no secret that Activision Blizzard is an industry leader that is well-positioned to continue delivering gains to its shareholders. 

Not only is the company financially strong, glimpses of what lies ahead with the company‘s strategy moving forward have also been revealed. Without a doubt, Call of Duty has been a success for the company, where its player count tripled over the past two years. Now, the company plans to replicate its success with its other games. CEO Bobby Kotick even mentioned on the company’s latest conference call that “Call of Duty is the template we’re applying to our proven franchises.” So, do you still believe ATVI stock to be a top gaming stock to buy?  

[Read More] 4 Artificial Intelligence Stocks To Watch Right Now

Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. 

Take-Two Interactive Software (TTWO) is a video game holding company based in New York City. The company owns two major publishing labels, Rockstar Games and 2K. Rockstar Games is the developer and publisher of Grand Theft Auto. Impressively, TTWO stock has risen over 30% over the past year. Now, let us assess if this upward trend is justified and sustainable.

best video game stocks (TTWO stock)

This bullish run thus far is certainly justified given its fiscal 2021 and fourth-quarter earnings report announced in May. The company reported net revenue of 3.37 billion, an increase of 9% year-over-year. Meanwhile, net income came in at $588.9 million, up by a whopping 46% year-over-year. Throughout the year, the company enhanced its organization long-term by broadening its portfolio offerings and investing in creative talent. And hence, this is reflected in its impressive financial numbers. 

As for whether it is sustainable, the company is certainly not resting on its laurels. Last week, TTWO announced that it has acquired privately-held Nordeus for up to $378 million. Nordeus is a mobile games company best known for Top Eleven, the world’s most successful mobile soccer management game. This would further strengthen its mobile game business and broadens its sports portfolio with its first-ever soccer offerings. All things considered, would TTWO stock be one of the better investments now?

[Read More] Best Stocks To Invest In Right Now? 3 Biotech Stocks To Know

Sea Ltd

When looking at gaming stocks, Sea is often overlooked as its platform also consists of electronic commerce and digital financial services. The company operates three businesses, Garena, Shopee, and SeaMoney. Garena is a global game developer and publisher with a presence in Southeast Asia, Taiwan, and Latin America. It provides access to mobile and personal computer online games.

top tech stocks (SE Stock)

In its first-quarter earnings report, the company’s revenue skyrocketed to $1.8 billion, an increase of 146.7% year-over-year. On top of that, the gross profit was $645.4 million, up by 212.1% year-over-year. Zooming into its digital entertainment business, it contributed $781.3 million in revenue. This is largely due to the increase in active user base, especially with the continued success of its game Free Fire.

So, if a healthy trend is a key factor for you as an investor, then SE stock would fit the bill. The company’s stock has soared by over 180% within the past year. On top of that, the company boasts diversity as it deals with not only the gaming market. In fact, there are claims that the e-commerce arm, Shopee, will be launching in Colombia and Chile. This is with plans of offering online sales via its website and local apps. Given its strong financial performance and expansive nature, would you consider adding SE stock into your portfolio?

The post Top Gaming Stocks To Buy Now? 4 Names To Watch appeared first on Stock Market News, Quotes, Charts and Financial Information | StockMarket.com.

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Economics

Extra Crunch roundup: TC Mobility recaps, Nubank EC-1, farewell to browser cookies

What, exactly, are investors looking for?

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What, exactly, are investors looking for?

Early-stage founders, usually first-timers, often tie themselves in knots as they try to project the qualities they hope investors are seeking. In reality, few entrepreneurs have the acting skills required to convince someone that they’re patient, dedicated or hard working.

Johan Brenner, general partner at Creandum, was an early backer of Klarna, Spotify and several other European startups. Over the last two decades, he’s identified five key traits shared by people who create billion-dollar companies.


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“A true unicorn founder doesn’t need to have all of those capabilities on day one,” says Brenner, “but they should already be thinking big while executing small and demonstrating that they understand how to scale a company.”

Drawing from observations gleaned from working with founders like Spotify’s Daniel Ek, Sebastian Siemiatkowski from Klarna, and iZettle’s Jacob de Geer and Magnus Nilsson, Brenner explains where “VC FOMO” comes from and how it drives deal-making.

We’re running a series of posts that recap conversations from last week’s virtual TC Mobility conference, including an interview with Refraction AI’s Matthew Johnson, a look at how autonomous delivery startups are navigating the regulatory and competitive landscape, and much more. There are many more recaps to come; click here to find them all.

Thanks very much for reading Extra Crunch!

Walter Thompson
Senior Editor, TechCrunch
@yourprotagonist

How contrarian hires and a pitch deck started Nubank’s $30 billion fintech empire

Image Credits: Nigel Sussman

Founded in 2013 and based in São Paulo, Brazil, Nubank serves more than 34 million customers, making it Latin America’s largest neobank.

Reporter Marcella McCarthy spoke to CEO David Velez to learn about his efforts to connect with consumers and overcome entrenched opposition from established players who were friendly with regulators.

In the first of a series of stories for Nubank’s EC-1, she interviewed Velez about his early fundraising efforts. For a balanced perspective, she also spoke to early Nubank investors at Sequoia and Kaszek Ventures, Latin America’s largest venture fund, to find out why they funded the startup while it was still pre-product.

“There are people you come across in life that within the first hour of meeting with them, you know you want to work with them,” said Doug Leone, a global managing partner at Sequoia who’d recruited Velez after he graduated from grad school at Stanford.

Marcella also interviewed members of Nubank’s founding team to better understand why they decided to take a chance on a startup that faced such long odds of success.

“I left banking to make a fifth of my salary, and back then, about $5,000 in equity,” said Vitor Olivier, Nubank’s VP of operations and platforms.

“Financially, it didn’t really make sense, so I really had to believe that it was really going to work, and that it would be big.”

Despite flat growth, ride-hailing colossus Didi’s US IPO could reach $70B

Image Credits: Didi

In his last dispatch before a week’s vacation, Alex Wilhelm waded through the numbers in Didi’s SEC filing. The big takeaways?

“While Didi managed an impressive GTV recovery in China, its aggregate numbers are flatter, and recent quarterly trends are not incredibly attractive,” he writes.

However, “Didi is not as unprofitable as we might have anticipated. That’s a nice surprise. But the company’s regular business has never made money, and it’s losing more lately than historically, which is also pretty rough.”

What’s driving the rise of robotaxis in China with AutoX, Momenta and WeRide

AutoX, Momenta and WeRide took the stage at TC Sessions: Mobility 2021 to discuss the state of robotaxi startups in China and their relationships with local governments in the country.

They also talked about overseas expansion — a common trajectory for China’s top autonomous vehicle startups — and shed light on the challenges and opportunities for foreign AV companies eyeing the massive Chinese market.

The air taxi market prepares to take flight

Image Credits: Bryce Durbin

“As in any disruptive industry, the forecast may be cloudier than the rosy picture painted by passionate founders and investors,” Aria Alamalhodaei writes. “A quick peek at comments and posts on LinkedIn reveals squabbles among industry insiders and analysts about when this emerging technology will truly take off and which companies will come out ahead.”

But while some electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) companies have no revenue yet to speak of — and may not for the foreseeable future — valuations are skyrocketing.

“Electric air mobility is gaining elevation,” she writes. “But there’s going to be some turbulence ahead.”

The demise of browser cookies could create a Golden Age of digital marketing

Though some may say the doomsday clock is ticking toward catastrophe for digital marketing, Apple’s iOS 14.5 update, which does away with automatic opt-ins for data collection, and Google’s plan to phase out third-party cookies do not signal a death knell for digital advertisers.

“With a few changes to short-term strategy — and a longer-term plan that takes into account the fact that people are awakening to the value of their online data — advertisers can form a new type of relationship with consumers,” Permission.io CTO Hunter Jensen writes in a guest column. “It can be built upon trust and open exchange of value.”

If offered the right incentives, Jensen predicts, “consumers will happily consent to data collection because advertisers will be offering them something they value in return.”

How autonomous delivery startups are navigating policy, partnerships and post-pandemic operations

Nuro second gen R2 delivery vehicle

Image Credits: Nuro

We kicked off this year’s TC Sessions: Mobility with a talk featuring three leading players in the field of autonomous delivery. Gatik co-founder and chief engineer Apeksha Kumavat, Nuro head of operations Amy Jones Satrom, and Starship Technologies co-founder and CTO Ahti Heinla joined us to discuss their companies’ unique approaches to the category.

The trio discussed government regulation on autonomous driving, partnerships with big corporations like Walmart and Domino’s, and the ongoing impact the pandemic has had on interest in the space.

Waabi’s Raquel Urtasun explains why it was the right time to launch an AV technology startup

Image Credits: Waabi via Natalia Dola

Raquel Urtasun, the former chief scientist at Uber ATG, is the founder and CEO of Waabi, an autonomous vehicle startup that came out of stealth mode last week. The Toronto-based company, which will focus on trucking, raised an impressive $83.5 million in a Series A round led by Khosla Ventures.

Urtasun joined Mobility 2021 to talk about her new venture, the challenges facing the self-driving vehicle industry and how her approach to AI can be used to advance the commercialization of AVs.

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Spread & Containment

How to create effective, engaged workplace teams after the COVID-19 pandemic

Post-pandemic, the world of work will probably never be the same again. And that’s probably a good thing. We now have an opportunity to make it better.

For workplace teams returning to the office post-pandemic, it will still be important to protect the benefits of remote work: uninterrupted time for strategically important projects, and respect for personal preferences. (Pixabay)

Well into the pandemic’s second year, we are beginning to see light on the horizon. We’re not out of the woods here in Canada. As some areas of the country continue to struggle to contain the virus, others are optimistic due to lowering case counts thanks to restrictions and lockdown measures.

Ontario — the country’s largest province by population — is now in the first step of its reopening, and officials have said the majority of those who want to receive a vaccine could be fully immunized by the end of the summer.

The rolling lockdowns and public health restrictions of the pandemic response meant a massive shift to remote and virtual work for many workplaces. As we look towards and plan for the post-pandemic future, businesses and organizations need to thoughtfully consider what the future of work looks like for them.

They will need to reflect on their operations pre-pandemic, consider what they learned from the disruption of the crisis, and ask themselves: How can we build back better?

Structure shift

Recent decades have seen a shift in the structure of businesses and organizations, away from hierarchical models in favour of cross-functional and, at times, self-managing networks of teams. In fact, a 2016 survey found the majority of large corporations rely on interdisciplinary and cross-functional teams. In 2019, 31 per cent of respondents said that most or almost all work is performed in teams.

For many of these organizations, the pandemic saw these teams transition from in-person work to remote interactions via video-conferencing services like Zoom, Microsoft Teams and Skype.

Many appreciated the comfort and autonomy inherent in working from home, but the erosion of work-life balance and social interaction has caused challenges.

As we come out of the pandemic, workplace teams will need an environment that retains the experience of autonomy while also providing a sense of belonging. Employees should be free to decide where they want to work and when they want to work whenever possible. But we must also address the negative impact of isolation — loneliness, fatigue or even depression, all of which have been frequently reported during the pandemic.

Five women at a desk have a conversation.
Effective workplace teams will be critical to building back better. (Piqsels)

Research on workplace teams finds that autonomy can in fact co-exist with a sense of belonging and cohesion. For this to be achieved, organizations need to find a balance, and need to organize teams according to these structural considerations:

• Teams have a strong leader, or they can feature shared leadership.

• Teams have clearly defined task interdependencies and interfaces among team members, or team members can perform their work largely in isolation.

• Teams have the same goals and rewards for all members, or they can offer individualized goals and rewards.

• Teams communicate virtually, or they can communicate so face-to-face.

• Teams have a shared history and aspirations, or they operate for a limited time, after which they disband.

A strong leader, alongside clearly defined task interdependencies, focuses on the team as a whole, whereas virtual teamwork and individual rewards emphasize the individual team member.

Combining features of teamwork that promote autonomy with other features that foster cohesiveness and a sense of belonging is likely the best path forward.

Emphasize shared goals

As long as employees continue to operate in a virtual setting, it’s important for leaders to define shared goals and rewards. Teams must share a vision of the future that complements the larger degree of autonomy they’ve experienced through virtual teamwork.

Focusing on elements of teamwork that bring team members closer together should not be left to chance. As some organizations learned during the pandemic, scheduling social hours can replace the spontaneous conversations at the water cooler. A book club can replace the informal learning over a lunch chat. A fireside Zoom chat on company values and goals can replace an in-person town hall.

But post-pandemic, few organizations will maintain an all-virtual presence. Many will move towards a hybrid model. For those teams returning to the office, it will still be important to protect the benefits of remote work: uninterrupted time for strategically important projects, and respect for personal preferences.

The pandemic has also almost eliminated a troublesome feature of organizational life: presenteeism, or showing up to work when sick. We must not go backwards in this regard. Workers must protect themselves and their team members from the consequences of illness.

Post-pandemic, the world of work will probably never be the same again. And that’s probably a good thing. We now have an opportunity to make it better.

Matthias Spitzmuller does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.

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Economics

EU Bars 10 Megabanks From Recovery Bond Sale Over Previous Market Manipulation

EU Bars 10 Megabanks From Recovery Bond Sale Over Previous Market Manipulation

In an unexpected move, the European Union has decided to shut out some of the world’s biggest banks from sales of bonds for the EU’s COVID recovery fund, expected.

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EU Bars 10 Megabanks From Recovery Bond Sale Over Previous Market Manipulation

In an unexpected move, the European Union has decided to shut out some of the world's biggest banks from sales of bonds for the EU's COVID recovery fund, expected to be the largest supranational bond offering yet.

According to the FT, the EU excluded 10 banks - including JPMorgan, Citigroup, Bank of America and Barclays - from running bond sales as part of its €800 billion ($968.5 billion) recovery fund due to what the FT described as "historic breaches of antitrust rules". Specifically, the EU is seeking to punish the banks for their roles in the series of market-rigging scandals (which infamously started with rigging of the Libor before investigators moved on to currency and fixed income markets) that broke early in the last decade. The move is especially bold because many of the banks being shut out of the deal are some of the world's biggest players in international debt markets.

In other words, simply by shutting them out of this massive deal, the EU could shake up the league tables as the banks that win its business will undoubtedly be handsomely rewarded for their work. The borrowing spree - Brussels' biggest-ever - will begin Tuesday with the sale of a new 10-year eurobond to fund the NextGenerationEU pandemic program. 7 of the 10 banks excluded are among the biggest sellers' of European debt. Before they will be allowed to sell the bonds, the EU wants them to demonstrate that they have "taken remedial measures" to prevent this from happening again.

In other words, Brussels is serious about preventing banks from stuffing their pockets with public money.

Banks found to have breached EU competition rules “will not be invited to tender for individual syndicated transactions”, said a spokesman for the European Commission, which handles debt issuance on behalf of the EU. “The Commission implements a strict approach to ensuring that the entities with whom it works are fit to be a counterparty of the EU."

Banks found guilty of antitrust breaches will be required to show they have taken “remedial measures” to prevent them happening again before they will be allowed to bid for syndications, the spokesman added.

Bank of America, Natixis, Nomura, NatWest and UniCredit have been prevented from taking part due to a Commission antitrust ruling last month that they participated in a bond trading cartel during the eurozone debt crisis a decade ago.

Citigroup, JPMorgan and Barclays — in addition to NatWest — have also been barred due to a finding two years ago that they were involved in manipulating currency markets between 2007 and 2013, people familiar with the matter said. Deutsche Bank and Crédit Agricole are also excluded due to an April ruling that they were involved in a different bond trading cartel, the people said. All the banks declined to comment.

Despite this, Reuters reported earlier (citing a senior banker in charge of the deal) that the EU's first offering of €20 billion ($24.3 billion) in bonds was heavily oversubscribed. The popularity isn't that surprising, considering that Triple-A rated debt in the region can be hard to come by (since the ECB owns much of the market). And the EU bonds feature a slight yield premium to German bunds. Investors placed upwards of €140 billion in orders for the €20 billion of debt, according to bankers who spoke to Reuters.

The new EU bond, due July 4 2031, will price 2 basis points below the mid-swap rate, according to the lead manager. That is equivalent to a yield of around 0.06%, according to Reuters calculations, down from around one basis point over the mid-swap level when the sale started on Monday.

Since October, the EU has already issued 90 billion euros to help finance its unemployment support program SURE.

The EU is managing these bond sales like a national debt offering, which is appropriate since they will likely transform the bloc into the world’s biggest supranational debt issuer.

All ten banks are among the 39 approved "primary dealers" which have a responsibility to bid for bonds during government auctions. One anonymous source told the FT that the EU's decision to bar the top dealers could create unnecessary complications for the sales. "There’s a delicate equilibrium in the relationship between issuers and primary dealers, and this risks upsetting that,”" said a senior banker at one of the lenders barred from syndicated deals. "These issues they are bringing up are from a long time ago, and they have been settled."

The banks working on Tuesday’s inaugural recovery fund bond are BNP Paribas, DZ Bank, HSBC, Intesa Sanpaolo, Morgan Stanley, Danske Bank and Santander.

The EU is expected to sell two more syndicated bonds by the end of July.

Tyler Durden Tue, 06/15/2021 - 09:49

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