• Chris Simpson

“Facebook To Freeze Political Ads Before The Election”- Weekly Market Update Sep 4,2020

In what seems like a never-ending narrative between social media companies and politics, Facebook has announced that they will freeze any new political ads 7 days before the election. However, existing ads will still be allowed to run. This is a new update from the company who has, in the past, generally declined to enforce any types of rules for advertising on their platform.

It’s interesting to wonder if Mark Zuckerburg knew that when he was starting Facebook in his dorm room it would one day be a key piece in the center of a global debate on news, ethics, and politics.

Let’s take a look at some of the biggest business updates from this week.

Bumble eyes an IPO

The popular dating site Bumble announced their plans to go public in 2021, with a projected valuation in between $6 and $8 billion.

Online dating is another industry that has been a surprising winner of the coronavirus economy. According to a study done by, online dating was up as much as 82% during the month of March. With most businesses shutdown, quarantines in effect, and rules for social distancing there isn’t much alternative but to turn to online dating.

Bumble has about 100 million users.

Whole Foods opens a new store...but no one is allowed in

Earlier this week, Whole Foods (now owned by Amazon) launched their first online-only Whole Foods in Brooklyn. The store will look just like a regular Whole Foods but it will only be used by employees to fulfill online orders. These orders will then be delivered by Amazon delivery trucks or bikers. Although this timing seems perfect because of the coronavirus, these types of stores have been planned for over a year.

Amazon wants to make online grocery the norm and eliminate lines completely. They’ve also launched the first Amazon Fresh store in Los Angeles last week. This store has special shopping carts that tally of the prices of items you put in them and allows you to checkout online by simply walking out of the store!

Netflix launches a free streaming site

Netflix launched an interesting new streaming site that gives away shows and movies...for free. The catch is that you can only stream 10 free movies (that Netflix has already chosen). It’s a little bit like how a grocery store gives away free samples to let you try out the products.

➢ Bird Box, Stranger Things, and Murder Mystery are among the 10 titles people can watch.

➢ The 10 shows are also all Netflix originals, which could be their way of trying to get people to watch and talk about their content.

Netflix already has 182.2 million subscribers and is looking for new ways to add the next 100 million as the streaming wars get more competitive. They’re hoping that this new teaser will encourage a more price-sensitive audience to join.

A few other updates:

➢ Need to book a trip? United, Delta, and America announced that they’re scrapping ticket-change fees to encourage more people to fly.

➢ Zoom clocks in a nice 335% growth in revenue from last year - revenue was up to $663 million for Q2 2020.

➢ UTZ: Old company, new IPO. The 99-year-old chip company has recently announced plans to go public.

➢ Ford plans to cut 100 salaried jobs in North America as part of a restructuring plan.

That’s it for this week -- Join us next week for another market update.

Securities and investment advisory services offered through NEXT Financial Group Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC. Sierra Ridge Wealth Management is not an affiliate of NEXT Financial Group Inc.

This material is not intended as an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of a security or any other financial instrument. Past performance does not guarantee future performance.

All the views expressed are those of Chris Simpson and not those of Sierra Ridge Wealth Management or NEXT Financial Group Inc.

The S&P 500 is a market-cap weighted index composed of the common stocks of 500 leading companies in leading industries of the U.S. economy. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted index of 30 actively traded blue-chip stocks.

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