Verizon To Buy AOL For $4.4 Billion And Other Financial Stories Worth Reading (5/12/15)

7:00 AM: Looks like Verizon is buying AOL for about $50 a share…in cash. That comes out to around $4.4 billion dollars.

It appears Verizon is making moves to solidify their position in the digital world — Verizon plan on using AOL’s digital and video platforms to drive growth. Verizon claims they are looking to the future with this acquisition. They will leave Tim Armstrong, AOL chairman and CEO at the helm.

“Verizon’s vision is to provide customers with a premium digital experience based on a global multiscreen network platform… This acquisition supports our strategy to provide a cross-screen connection for consumers, creators and advertisers to deliver that premium customer experience.” — Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam

The takeover is expected to close this summer.

The last time AOL was part of a merger was in 2000, when it merged with Time Warner for $182 billion.

Read Verizon’s press release here.

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There are people gossiping about AOL’s sale to Verizon. And not surprisingly, it’s from the ad tech scene.

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McDonalds is decreasing the number of items offered on their menu. (Thank goodness.) But this means they’re also experimenting with prices. (Aw, hell no!)

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Pablo Picasso’s 1955 painting “Les Femmes d’Alger (Version ‘O’)” was sold for a whopping $179.4 million plus fees at Christie’s. That’s roughly 36,325,678 Big Macs.

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Forbes published a slideshow of the best and worst cities to start your career. Guess what city is No. 1? And a surprising number of cities are located in the Lone Star State.

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Wall Street is actually warning clients that the current state of commodity prices is not on par with reality. The recent rally in oil and industrial commodities may see a shocking (or not-so-shocking, if you’ve been a bearish investor) decline in the coming summer. If you plan to go long on brent, Morgan Stanley is concerned about you (so is Barclays).

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Yields increase as bond traders sell, sell, sell! This is affecting other markets, causing stocks to drop.

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TV companies are putting money into social media (and other forms of digital advertising) to attract new audiences. Advertisers are rethinking campaigns and how they can reach the very fickle, advertising-hating internet users. If you’ve clicked “Skip” on a YouTube video, raise your hand!

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Reuters published an article that will probably piss you off. Here’s the headline: U.S. media CEOs are top paid even in year when stock prices lagged. The median compensation amounted to just above $32 million.

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Youtube is making moves to solidify their position as the dominant force in streaming video service. Their rallying cry? “10 More Years!”

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Surprise, surprise! The IMF is finally making noise about the financial sector. “It’s too big,” they shout. Emerging markets need to be wary of allowing their banking systems to grow at a pace at which regulators “can keep pace with.”

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It’s 10:03 AM and stocks are dropping fast and hard. The Dow has gone down almost 150 points and the S&P 500 lost almost 18.6 points. Rough morning for some of us, eh? BI put it best: We’re getting smoked.

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Well, looks like there’s been a stalemate in the long, drawn-out affair that is Greece vs. Europe. The Greeks were forced to use emergency money to pay off loans to the IMF. The price? $843,798,750.00. Yowzers. Austerity freakin’ hurts.

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Do you put your money into a retirement fund? You might be losing money. You might be part of the workforce that has lost almost $24 billion in total.

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Everyone is now aware of just how risky and unpredictable Chinese stocks can be. Well, this particular Chinese company changed their name and their stock jumped 10%. What in the world is happening over there? And people are saying this isn’t like the dot-com bubble.

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Marching on to job creation? Looks like March job openings declined from 5.14 million in February to 4.99 million. On the bright side, almost one-thirds of the workforce is made up of Millennials! Go us!

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According to Bespoke, there is an “eerie” correlation between GoPro and Shake Shack stock. And it’s not about how you can film yourself eating a burger.

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Fund managers are sick of negative bond yields. (I think I am too, but I’m not a bond trader.) They want yields, so they’re doing something about it. Traders are hitting up foreign exchange markets to boost yield and that seems to be the thing to do.

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Earlier this year (or was it mid-April?) robo-advisers were thrown into the spotlight. I mean, Betterment, Wealthfront, Acorn, these companies as recent as they are, have been around for a couple of years. Schwab recently entered the robo-adviser market, but regulators want people who put money into these faceless automated investment tools to be careful. Why? “Because of security in space.”

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Workers are quitting their jobs in droves, it seems. That, according to economists, means a healthy economy. Quitting shows economic confidence, which is a good thing, I guess.

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We’re all seeing red today in the market.

Bloomberg.com
Bloomberg.com

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What’s this?! The Department Of Justice will “probably not” block AT&T’s $49 billion acquisition of DirecTV.

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Banks are not accepting money from marijuana companies. That’s near $3 billion in cash that banks are refusing. Are they high or something?

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It’s after the closing bell and guess what? Markets are still in the red.

Bloomberg.com
Bloomberg.com

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Last updated: 4:07 PM. TC mark
image found on Google Finance

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