In this weekly series, we break down seven different things every person needs to know from the world of finance news. We're taking complicated stories and making them simple, easy to understand, and quick to read. Perfect for the man who wants to be in the know, but doesn't have the time to obsess over global markets.
1.) Update On Greece
- Greece must come to an agreement with its creditors by Sunday, or face a banking crisis and probable removal from the Euro.
- European stock markets rallied on Friday on optimism that a deal would be made; expect this to reverse, if it is no deal is made.
2.) Microsoft Is Not Looking So Hot Right Now
- Microsoft almost entirely wrote off its $7.9 billion purchase of Nokia, effectively killing the Nokia brand that had carried Microsoft’s operating system.
- Microsoft has, effectively, given up on competing with Apple and Android as an operating system for mobile phones.
- Don’t expect to see many Microsoft Windows phones again.
- Allows for more focus on software like Microsoft Office and cloud computing.
- Microsoft’s stock was flat on the announcement, indicating investor confidence in the new strategy.
3.) Barclays Fires CEO
- Barclays became the third European bank this year to fire its CEO, who had failed to turnaround the British bank.
- A turnaround specialist has taken the helm and the stock rallied.
4.) Less And Less People Are Buying Samsung Smartphones
- Samsung warned that it would have another fall in profits, as sales of its smartphone unit underperformed.
- Chinese alternatives are taking away market share at the cheap end of its products, while Apple’s iPhone 6 competes at the top end.
5.) Chinese Stocks Are Getting Hammered
- Chinese stocks had another rough week, with the major stock index off almost one-third since its peak in June.
- The Chinese government introduced measures to support the market, which led to a combined recovery of 10% on Thursday and Friday.
6.) Oil Market Is "Massively Oversupplied"
- The International Energy Agency (IEA) warned that oil prices could fall further, saying that the oil market is “massively oversupplied”.
- The price of oil had a volatile week, crashing early in the week as Chinese stocks sold off while rebounding into the weekend.
7.) Sony Plans To Make Big Bucks With Camera Phones
- Sony wants to invest $1.7 billion in increasing its camera sensor capacity.
- It expects sales of image sensors to expand 22% because of the rise in popularity of smartphones.
- Sony has a projected return to profit in the current financial year, its first time in the past years. These indicators suggest that Sony stock could potentially provide a buying opportunity.