AAPL Stock: EU Fines Qualcomm $1.2 Billion Over Apple Deal: LIVE MARKETS BLOG

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Qualcomm Fined by EU Over Apple Chip Supply

The European Union is fining chipmaker Qualcomm (QCOM) $1.2 billion for paying Apple (AAPL) to use its chips exclusively.

“Qualcomm paid billions of U.S. dollars to a key customer, Apple, so that it would not buy from rivals. These payments were not just reductions in price – they were made on the condition that Apple would exclusively use Qualcomm’s baseband chipsets in all its iPhones and iPads,” the European Competition Commission said in a statement.

The fine is equivalent to 4.9% of Qualcomm’s 2017 turnover. Apple will not be punished in the case.

Apple’s relationship with Qualcomm has strained in recent years wiht Apple suing the company for nearly $1 billion in patent royalty rebates that it says Qualcomm withheld from the company.

Toys “R” Us to Close 180 Stores

Struggling toy retailer Toys “R” Us said it plans to close 180 stores across the U.S. as the company looks to position itself for profitability once it emerges from bankruptcy restructuring.

“The reinvention of our brands requires that we make tough decisions about our priorities and focus,” Chairman and CEO David Brandon wrote Tuesday in a memo to customers. “The actions we are taking are necessary to give us the best chance to emerge from our bankruptcy proceedings as a more viable and competitive company.”

Toys “R” Us has about 880 stores in the U.S.


Texas Instruments Falls as Rev Growth Slows

Investors were hitting the “off” button on shares of Texas Instruments Inc. (TXN) in premarket trading on Wednesday, Jan. 24, following the chipmaker’s earnings release.

Shares were down more than 7% after the Dallas-based company failed to top Wall Street’s bottom-line expectations for the first time in at least two years.

Texas Instruments earned $1.09 a share on an adjusted basis in the quarter, matching Wall Street’s estimates, on revenue of $3.75 billion vs. expectations of $3.74 billion.

Texas Instruments also said that it expected revenue growth to decline to 7% in the current quarter from 10% the previous quarter. That level is below the 12% to 13% revenue growth the company reported in the first three quarters of 2017.


GE Gains Ground Despite Dismal Quarter

Shares of General Electric (GE) were up more than 2% premarket after the company reported a 5% decline in fourth-quarter revenue and a profit loss of $10 billion. Last week the company announced it would take an $11 billion charge for insurance losses and taxes.

On an adjusted per-share basis, GE earned 27 cents per share on revenue of $31.4 billion. Analysts on average were expecting the company to report earnings of 28 cents per share on revenue of $32.87 billion.

For the year, GE provided earnings guidance between $1 and $1.07 per share.


Premarket

U.S. futures were pointed higher across the board as the Dow looks to recover from the slight dip it experienced in trading during Tuesday’s session.

Dow futures contracts were up 0.3%, Nasdaq futures up 0.15% and S&P futures rose 0.2% ahead of Wednesdays opening bell.

In Asia, the Nikkei was the lone laggard among the major indices, falling 0.76% on the day. The Hang Seng and Shanghai Composite rose 0.08% and 0.37% respectively.

European markets were struggling Wednesday, showing red across the board with the FTSE 100 in London leading the way lower minus 0.5% with about four hours left in trading.

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