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Toshiba CEO in $1.2 Billion Scandal

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Toshiba Corp. said it will have to correct earnings by 152 billion yen ($1.2 billion) from more than six years in Japan’s biggest accounting scandal since $1.7 billion Olympus irregularities in 2011. Toshiba executives have been accused of setting unrealistic profit targets which led to flawed accounting, said a third-party investigation report released on Monday. According to the investigation the irregularities were skillfully hidden from outside observers.

Toshiba president and CEO, Hisao Tanaka and his predecessor, Norio Sasaki were said to have systematically delayed booking losses in order to conceal losses.

Naoki Fujiwara, a Tokyo-based fund manager at Shinkin Asset management Co. said the top management involved in this scandal should be dealt with and management structure renewed accordingly if they want things to return to normal and stakeholders to continue to trust them.

Sasaki with two other top executives just announced their resignation in an extraordinary board meeting going on in Japan.

IBM Second Quarter Earnings (2Q)

IBM second quarter (2Q) missed target, as sales of $20.8 billion missed forecasts of $20.9 billion. Earnings per share (EPS) came in at $3.84, topped $3.78 estimates. The company shares which have rallied 6 percent this month to $1732.22 were down 5 percent after the report was made public. The report marked a 13th consecutive quarter in which the company has failed to meet expected target.

IBM chief financial officer, Martin Schroeter said revenue would have been almost flat without currency impacts, this second quarter revenue would have been down 1 percent without the impact of currencies.

“Higher level of workforce rebalancing” resulting in more jobs cut globally and over $200 million charge taken, is also an increase compared with the rebalancing in the second quarter of last year, said Schroeter.

Apple Inc.

Apple shares rose 13 percent ahead of its 3 quarter earnings report, the company is expected to announce its earning later today.

Greece pays $.74 billion

Greek made good on its promise, pays $.74B to creditors, though over 35 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg said the crisis has not been averted but maybe back on the table next year. The financial markets to remain closed through Wednesday according to Haratsis, a stock broker in Greece. Greece creditors set August 6 deadline to round off bailout discussion.

Majority of the analysts surveyed said Greece should be safe for the rest of the year while half of them said 86 billion euro ($93 billion) might not be enough after all.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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Interswitch is the Most Valuable African Startup

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Interswitch, the leading payment processing company headquartered in Lagos, Nigeria, is Africa’s most valuable start-up at a US$ 1 billion valuation.

Founded in 2002, Interswitch uses switching infrastructure to connect different banks in Nigeria and powered banks’ ATM cards. Presently, the company has over 11,000 ATMs on its network.

In 2010, Helios Investment Partners bought two-thirds of the company and in the following year, Interswitch bought a 60 percent stake in Bankom in Uganda.

Interswitch owns Verve, Nigeria’s most used payment card, and accounted for 18 million of 25 million cards in circulation in Nigeria. The company also owns Quickteller and recently purchased VANSO, a mobile-focused technology provider to banks.

Like Interswitch, Stripe, the company that acquired Nigeria’s Paystack for over US$200 million, is the most valuable startup in the USA at over US$70 billion valuation.

Klarna, Nubank, Paytm and Grab leads in Europe, Latin America, India and Southeast Asia with valuations of US$10.65 billion, US$10 billion, US$16 billion and US$14 billion, respectively.

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E-commerce Black Friday Sales Estimated to Surge by 40% to 10.2 Billion

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The 2020 holiday shopping season will be unique, as the pandemic shifted consumer behavior from retail stores to online shopping. In response, many retailers moved their services online to not miss out on this year’s profits. Atlas VPN team decided to look into how e-commerce sales are set to perform in the upcoming long weekend.

Researchers predict that the US e-commerce revenue will exceed last year’s earnings by 49.5% on Thanksgiving day, totaling $6.18 billion in revenue. Black Friday is calculated to reach $10.2 billion in sales, exceeding last years numbers by 39.4%

Rachel Welch, COO of Atlas VPN, shares her tips on how to stay safe when shopping online during the holiday season:

“Watch out for too-good-to-be-true deals from unknown sellers, as cybercriminals will also expect to turn a profit during the holiday season, even though they are not selling anything, except maybe a bag full of disappointment.”

 Finally, analysis shows that on the last day of the long and full of special offers Thanksgiving weekend, consumers will go all out to bring record sales for e-commerce businesses, adding up to $12.89 billion.

To look at these five days from a wider perspective, e-commerce companies can expect to earn around 39.72% more than they did last year.

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Alibaba Merchants Sell $40B in First Half Hour of Singles Day 2020, More than 2019 Event Full Sales

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Singles Day 2020 was a roaring success, cementing its position as the world’s biggest shopping holiday. Sales across Alibaba’s platforms during the event totaled $74.1 billion, up from $38 billion in 2019.

According to the research data analyzed and published by Stock Apps, within the first 30 minutes of the event, the gross merchandise volume (GMV) surpassed 2019’s full-event sales, reaching $40.87 billion.

Moreover, instead of live events, Alibaba had 400 company executives and 30 celebrities hosting livestreams. Based on a study by Coresight, the Chinese livestream market is set to rack in sales worth $125 billion in 2020, compared to $63 billion in 2019. The US livestream market is a small fraction of that, valued at $5 billion.

China’s Tech Heavyweights Lose $280 Billion in Market Cap

Alibaba Singles Day 2020 dwarfed other major shopping holidays as has been the trend in previous years.

According to Practical eCommerce, Amazon Prime Day 2020 sales totaled $10.4 billion up from $7.16 billion in 2019. Cyber Monday sales in the US amounted to $7.9 billion in 2020 according to Statista. Black Friday and Thanksgiving added $9.7 billion to the figure to make $17.6 billion for the weekend.

Similarly, in 2018, Singles Day sold $30.8 billion while Prime Day sold $4.19 billion and Thanksgiving weekend got $14.2 billion.

However, the 2020 Singles Day event came in the wake of Ant Group’s suspension of a $37 billion listing. The suspension resulted in a $76 billion drop in Alibaba’s market cap, as the tech giant owns a two-thirds stake in Ant Group. Moreover, China’s regulators released anti-trust draft rules prior to the event, aimed at controlling monopolistic behavior.

Following the release, Alibaba shares plunged by 9.8%, as JD.com shed off 9.2%. Tencent similarly saw a 7.39% drop and Xiaomi fell by 8.18%. For the five companies, there was a combined loss of $280 billion in market capitalization.

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