Big Tech Stops Doing Stupid Stuff | Kanebridge News
Kanebridge News
    HOUSE MEDIAN ASKING PRICES AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $1,526,212 (+1.41%)       Melbourne $950,600 (-0.81%)       Brisbane $848,079 (+0.39%)       Adelaide $783,680 (+0.69%)       Perth $722,301 (+0.42%)       Hobart $727,777 (-0.40%)       Darwin $644,340 (-0.88%)       Canberra $873,193 (-2.75%)       National $960,316 (+0.31%)                UNIT MEDIAN ASKING PRICES AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $711,149 (+0.79%)       Melbourne $480,050 (-0.07%)       Brisbane $471,869 (+1.52%)       Adelaide $395,455 (-0.79%)       Perth $396,215 (+0.44%)       Hobart $535,914 (-1.67%)       Darwin $365,715 (+0.11%)       Canberra $487,485 (+1.06%)       National $502,310 (+0.25%)                HOUSES FOR SALE AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 8,985 (+170)       Melbourne 11,869 (-124)       Brisbane 8,074 (+47)       Adelaide 2,298 (-22)       Perth 6,070 (+20)       Hobart 993 (+24)       Darwin 282 (-4)       Canberra 809 (+43)       National 39,380 (+154)                UNITS FOR SALE AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 7,927 (+125)       Melbourne 6,997 (+50)       Brisbane 1,822 (+3)       Adelaide 488 (+5)       Perth 1,915 (-1)       Hobart 151 (+3)       Darwin 391 (-9)       Canberra 680 (+5)       National 20,371 (+181)                HOUSE MEDIAN ASKING RENTS AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $750 (-$20)       Melbourne $580 ($0)       Brisbane $590 (+$10)       Adelaide $570 (-$5)       Perth $600 ($0)       Hobart $550 ($0)       Darwin $700 (+$5)       Canberra $670 (+$10)       National $633 (-$1)                    UNIT MEDIAN ASKING RENTS AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $700 (-$20)       Melbourne $558 (+$8)       Brisbane $590 ($0)       Adelaide $458 (-$3)       Perth $550 ($0)       Hobart $450 ($0)       Darwin $550 ($0)       Canberra $540 (-$10)       National $559 (-$4)                HOUSES FOR RENT AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 5,224 (-134)       Melbourne 5,097 (+90)       Brisbane 3,713 (-84)       Adelaide 1,027 (-3)       Perth 1,568 (-46)       Hobart 471 (-3)       Darwin 127 (+13)       Canberra 658 (-32)       National 17,885 (-199)                UNITS FOR RENT AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 8,171 (-343)       Melbourne 5,447 (-170)       Brisbane 1,682 (-22)       Adelaide 329 (+3)       Perth 561 (-11)       Hobart 159 (-6)       Darwin 176 (+16)       Canberra 597 (-12)       National 17,122 (-545)                HOUSE ANNUAL GROSS YIELDS AND TREND         Sydney 2.56% (↓)       Melbourne 3.17% (↓)     Brisbane 3.62% (↑)        Adelaide 3.78% (↓)       Perth 4.32% (↓)     Hobart 3.93% (↑)      Darwin 5.65% (↑)      Canberra 3.99% (↑)        National 3.43% (↓)            UNIT ANNUAL GROSS YIELDS AND TREND         Sydney 5.12% (↓)       Melbourne 6.04% (↓)       Brisbane 6.50% (↓)     Adelaide 6.02% (↑)        Perth 7.22% (↓)     Hobart 4.37% (↑)      Darwin 7.82% (↑)        Canberra 5.76% (↓)       National 5.79% (↓)            HOUSE RENTAL VACANCY RATES AND TREND       Sydney 1.0% (↑)      Melbourne 0.7% (↑)      Brisbane 0.8% (↑)      Adelaide 0.4% (↑)        Perth 0.4% (↓)       Hobart 1.2% (↓)     Darwin 0.5% (↑)      Canberra 1.5% (↑)      National 0.8% (↑)             UNIT RENTAL VACANCY RATES AND TREND         Sydney 1.3% (↓)     Melbourne 1.6% (↑)      Brisbane 0.9% (↑)      Adelaide 0.5% (↑)      Perth 0.7% (↑)      Hobart 2.2% 2.0% (↑)      Darwin 1.0% (↑)        Canberra 1.7% (↓)     National 1.3% (↑)             AVERAGE DAYS TO SELL HOUSES AND TREND       Sydney 27.0 (↑)        Melbourne 28.3 (↓)     Brisbane 32.3 (↑)      Adelaide 26.3 (↑)      Perth 34.9 (↑)        Hobart 33.4 (↓)     Darwin 48.7 (↑)        Canberra 27.6 (↓)     National 32.3 (↑)             AVERAGE DAYS TO SELL UNITS AND TREND         Sydney 27.0 (↓)       Melbourne 29.0 (↓)     Brisbane 33.0 (↑)        Adelaide 27.5 (↓)     Perth 38.2 (↑)      Hobart 33.4 (↑)      Darwin 48.3 (↑)      Canberra 33.2 (↑)      National 33.7 (↑)            
Share Button

Big Tech Stops Doing Stupid Stuff

This year it might be smart to invest in companies that think a little smaller

By LAURA FORMAN |
Mon, Jan 16, 2023 8:41amGrey Clock 3 min

The era of moonshots is (mostly) over. This year tech companies are taking a more earthly approach.

Stock charts both explain the change in boardroom sentiment and tell the story following an epic Covid-fuelled rise and fall. The tech-heavy Nasdaq fell 33% last year—its worst performance since 2008. Big tech, which spent the past several years spending on big dreams, is starting to think smaller. Last year more than 1,000 tech companies laid off employees, resulting in over 150,000 lost jobs, a tally by layoffs.fyi shows. It is an eye- popping number that could actually get worse: More than 23,000 tech workers have already been let go this year as of Jan. 13, the same tracker shows.

Many of these workers were newly hired under the mistaken assumption that booming pandemic demand would become the new normal. But a good percentage were legacy employees working on projects that, given today’s market environment, range from fiscally irresponsible to projects that fall well outside their parent company’s wheelhouse.

Meta Platforms and Amazon.com are the most high-profile examples, having cut a combined 29,000 workers so far. Meta is still reeling from an online advertising slump and the many billions of dollars that Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg is throwing at a new virtual world dubbed the metaverse. Amazon is coping with a retail slowdown in part by scaling back spending in unprofitable business areas such as its Alexa-controlled electronics products.

Meta Chief Technology Officer Andrew Bosworth said in an internal memo late last year that his company had “solved too many problems by adding headcount,” according to a recent newsletter published by the Verge. He reportedly added that headcount comes with overhead, which “makes everything slower.”

Despite its much-touted virtual ambitions, Meta said in a blog post last month that it is still devoting 80% of its total investment dollars to improving its own legacy business. In the Verge’s recent interview, Mr. Bosworth acknowledged that Meta is “changing our investment strategy” to the extent that some projects have to demonstrate value sooner to justify their high burn.

The ax also seems to be falling at the original moonshot factory: The Wall Street Journal reported that Google-parent Alphabet is laying off more than 200 employees at its Verily Life Sciences unit, plus another 40 at its robotics software company, Intrinsic. Both are part of Alphabet’s Other Bets segment, which racked up $5.9 billion in operating losses over the past four quarters while generating barely $1 billion in revenue.

Those cuts are unlikely to be the last at the Google parent, which added more than 30,000 new employees in the first nine months of 2022, even as its own advertising business started slowing.

Smaller tech companies are feeling the burn too. Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman told the Journal recently that if he could jump back in time 18 months, he would advise companies looking for profits to just “stop doing stupid stuff.”

He speaks from experience: The real-estate brokerage laid off 13% of its staff and shut down its automated home-flipping business late last year after deeming the operation too risky and expensive to continue. That followed a second quarter in which its so-called iBuying business had swelled to account for over 40% of its overall revenue. Channeling an old playbook for the new year, Mr. Kelman said in his company’s third-quarter report that Redfin “will have more cash and sell more properties” by focusing on its online audience and on better brokerage services.

Competitor Zillow gave up on its own iBuying business a year earlier than Redfin for similar reasons. It has since refocused on finding better ways to help its customers buy and sell other people’s homes. It is now using artificial intelligence to do such things as helping apartment hunters view available listings on New York City buildings they pass by and helping sellers generate floor plans for online listings based on photos. Zillow is also bundling its technology into an updated product to bolster traditional agents’ businesses.

A sector that has long worked to disrupt is now focusing on enhancing what already exists. In ride-share, Uber Technologies has now added taxi bookings to its platform in many cities, essentially feeding business to a competitor (but not without taking a small cut, of course). In Britain, Uber users can also book trains, buses and rental cars through its app. With Uber Explore, users across several cities can even book restaurant reservations and experiences.

Reinventing the wheel is so last year. The best tech investments of 2023 might be companies content to spend their coin greasing it.



MOST POPULAR

Chris Dixon, a partner who led the charge, says he has a ‘very long-term horizon’

Americans now think they need at least $1.25 million for retirement, a 20% increase from a year ago, according to a survey by Northwestern Mutual

Related Stories
Money
Is China’s Economy Stabilising? Why September’s Data May Disappoint.
By RESHMA KAPADIA 29/09/2023
Money
Frank Stella’s ‘Abra I’ to Lead at Christie’s Post-War to Present Sale
By Casey Farmer 29/09/2023
Money
Your Online Account May Have Been Breached? Don’t Just Sit There. Do Something.
By RAJENDRAN MURTHY 28/09/2023
Is China’s Economy Stabilising? Why September’s Data May Disappoint.
By RESHMA KAPADIA
Fri, Sep 29, 2023 2 min

China’s economic recovery isn’t gaining the momentum money managers are awaiting.

Data from China Beige Book show that the economic green shoots glimpsed in August didn’t sprout further in September. Job growth and consumer spending faltered, while orders for exports came in at the lowest level since March, according to a monthly flash survey of more than 1,300 companies the independent research firm released Thursday evening.

Consumers’ initial revenge spending after Covid restrictions eased could be waning, the results indicate, with the biggest pullbacks in food and luxury items. While travel remains a bright spot ahead of the country’s Mid-Autumn Festival, hospitality firms and chain restaurants saw a sharp decline in sales, according to the survey.

And although policy makers have shown their willingness to stabilise the property market, the data showed another month of slower sales and lower prices in both the residential and commercial sectors.

Even more troubling are the continued problems at Evergrande Group, which has scuttled a plan to restructure itself, raising the risk of a liquidation that could further destabilise the property market and hit confidence about the economy. The embattled developer said it was notified that the company’s chairman Hui Ka Yan, who is under police watch, is suspected of committing criminal offences.

Nicole Kornitzer, who manages the $750 million Buffalo International Fund (ticker: BUIIX), worries about a “recession of expectations” as confidence continues to take a hit, discouraging people and businesses from spending. Kornitzer has only a fraction of the fund’s assets in China at the moment.

Before allocating more to China, Kornitzer said, she needs to see at least a couple quarters of improvement in spending, with consumption broadening beyond travel and dining out. Signs of stabilisation in the housing market would be encouraging as well, she said.

She isn’t alone in her concern about spending. Vivian Lin Thurston, manager for William Blair’s emerging markets and China strategies, said confidence among both consumers and small- and medium-enterprises is still suffering.

“Everyone is still out and about but they don’t buy as much or buy lower-priced goods so retail sales aren’t recovering as strongly and lower-income consumers are still under pressure because their employment and income aren’t back to pre-COVID levels,” said Thurston, who just returned from a visit to China.

“A lot of small- and medium- enterprises are struggling to stay afloat and are definitely taking a wait-and-see approach on whether they can expand. A lot went out of business during Covid and aren’t back yet. So far the stimulus measures have been anemic.”

Beijing needs to do more, especially to stabilise the property sector, Thurston said. The view on the ground is that more help could come in the fourth quarter—or once the Federal Reserve is done raising rates.

The fact that the Fed is raising rates while Beijing is cutting them is already putting pressure on the renminbi. If policy makers in China wait until the Fed is done, that would alleviate one source of pressure before their fiscal stimulus adds its own.

MOST POPULAR

Chris Dixon, a partner who led the charge, says he has a ‘very long-term horizon’

Americans now think they need at least $1.25 million for retirement, a 20% increase from a year ago, according to a survey by Northwestern Mutual

Related Stories
Property
Dream property not on the market? You can still find it here
By KANEBRIDGE NEWS 28/09/2023
Lifestyle
Claude Monet Water Lily Painting, Never Shown Publicly, Could Fetch at Least $65 Million
By ABBY SCHULTZ 01/10/2023
Money
The World’s Biggest Crypto Firm Is Melting Down
By PATRICIA KOWSMANN 27/09/2023
0
    Your Cart
    Your cart is emptyReturn to Shop