MSFT Jun 2021 90.000 call

OPR - OPR Delayed price. Currency in USD
95.11
0.00 (0.00%)
As of 12:00PM EST. Market open.
Stock chart is not supported by your current browser
Previous close95.11
Open95.11
Bid93.10
Ask98.10
Strike90.00
Expiry date2021-06-18
Day's range95.11 - 95.11
Contract rangeN/A
Volume79
Open interestN/A
  • Stock market dives — a 20% plunge in some hot stocks could be next
    Yahoo Finance

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  • Tech Leads Stock Slide on Virus Fears; Gold Gains: Markets Wrap
    Bloomberg

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    (Bloomberg) -- U.S. equities slumped on concern that the coronavirus that originated in China will take a heavy toll on corporate earnings. The dollar jumped and gold climbed to a seven-year high as investors sought havens.Microsoft Corp., Apple Inc. and other big tech names led losses after Japan reported two deaths and South Korea confirmed its first fatality from the disease amid a report the illness was spreading in Beijing. ViacomCBS Inc. tumbled after sales missed estimates, while Morgan Stanley dropped after agreeing to buy E*Trade Financial Corp. for $13 billion. The S&P 500 Index pared the worst of its decline in the afternoon amid gains for automakers and real-estate companies.The yen extended its fall toward 112 per dollar amid disappointing economic news and early positioning before the fiscal year-end next month. Treasuries rallied.Sentiment turned negative Thursday, a day after equities reached record highs, as the infection that originated in China continues to expand beyond the mainland. Earnings misses are adding to the gloom, alongside fresh warnings on the pathogen’s impact from A.P. Moller-Maersk A/S, the world’s largest container shipping firm, and Air France-KLM. Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s chief equity strategist said a near-term correction for the stock market is looking more probable.“It could be some larger players hedging against downside risk of the coronavirus spreading,” said Chris Zaccarelli, chief investment officer at Independent Advisor Alliance. “That, on top of the Goldman call that a correction is more likely, has people on edge.”Elsewhere, subpar results from AXA SA and Telefonica SA weighed on European equity gauges. Asia stocks traded mixed. Oil gained in New York.Here are some key events coming up:Earnings season rolls on, with results from Deere & Co. set for Friday.Euro-area PMI and inflation data are also due Friday.Group of 20 finance ministers and central bank chiefs are due to meet Feb. 22-23 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and are expected to discuss efforts to support growth amid the coronavirus threat.These are the main moves in markets:StocksThe S&P 500 Index fell 0.4% at the close of trading in New York.The Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell 0.9%.The MSCI Asia Pacific Index sank 0.7%.CurrenciesThe Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index jumped 0.5%.The euro slipped 0.2% to $1.0787.The Japanese yen weakened 0.6% to 112.08 per dollar.BondsThe yield on 10-year Treasuries sank five basis points to 1.52%.Germany’s 10-year yield declined three basis points to -0.45%.Britain’s 10-year yield dipped two basis points to 0.57%.CommoditiesWest Texas Intermediate crude gained 0.9% to $53.78 a barrel.Gold strengthened 0.5% to $1,619.80 an ounce.\--With assistance from Cormac Mullen, Adam Haigh, Todd White and Yakob Peterseil.To contact the reporters on this story: Vildana Hajric in New York at vhajric1@bloomberg.net;Claire Ballentine in New York at cballentine@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Christopher Anstey at canstey@bloomberg.net, Brendan WalshFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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  • Reuters - UK Focus

    Qualitest seeks acquisitions to reach $1 bln revenue goal

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  • Apple Weighs Letting Users Switch Default iPhone Apps to Rivals
    Bloomberg

    Apple Weighs Letting Users Switch Default iPhone Apps to Rivals

    (Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. is considering giving rival apps more prominence on iPhones and iPads and opening its HomePod speaker to third-party music services after criticism the company provides an unfair advantage to its in-house products.The technology giant is discussing whether to let users choose third-party web browser and mail applications as their default options on Apple’s mobile devices, replacing the company’s Safari browser and Mail app, according to people familiar with the matter. Since launching the App Store in 2008, Apple hasn’t allowed users to replace pre-installed apps such as these with third-party services. That has made it difficult for some developers to compete, and has raised concerns from lawmakers probing potential antitrust violations in the technology industry.The web browser and mail are two of the most-used apps on the iPhone and iPad. To date, rival browsers like Google Chrome and Firefox and mail apps like Gmail and Microsoft Outlook have lacked the status of Apple’s products. For instance, if a user clicks a web link sent to them on an iPhone, it will automatically open in Safari. Similarly, if a user taps an email address -- say, from a text message or a website -- they’ll be sent to the Apple Mail app with no option to switch to another email program.The Cupertino, California-based company also is considering loosening restrictions on third-party music apps, including its top streaming rival Spotify Technology SA, on HomePods, said the people, who asked not to be named discussing internal company deliberations.Read more: Apple’s Default iPhone Apps Give It Growing Edge Over App Store RivalsApple’s closed system to prohibit users from setting third-party apps as defaults was questioned last year during a hearing of a U.S. House of Representatives antitrust panel. Lawmakers pressed the issue of whether iPhone users can make non-Apple apps their defaults in categories including web browsers, maps, email and music.Being a default app on the world’s best-selling smartphone is valuable because consumers are subtly coaxed and prodded into using this more-established software rather than alternatives. Keeping users tethered to Apple’s services is important to the company as the growth of smartphone demand slows and sales of music, video, cloud storage and other subscriptions make up a greater share of the iPhone maker’s total revenue.An Apple spokesman declined to comment.The company currently pre-installs 38 default apps on iPhones and iPads, Bloomberg News has reported, including the Safari web browser, Maps, Messages and Mail.Last year, Stockholm-based Spotify submitted an antitrust complaint to the European Union, saying Apple squeezes rival services by imposing a 30% cut for subscriptions made via the App Store. Apple responded that Spotify wants the benefits of the App Store without paying for them. As part of its complaint, Spotify singled out the inability to run on the HomePod and become the default music player in Siri, Apple’s voice-activated digital assistant.Now, Apple is working to allow third-party music services to run directly on the HomePod, said the people. Spotify and other third-party music apps can stream from an iPhone or iPad to the HomePod via Apple’s AirPlay technology. That’s a much more cumbersome experience than streaming directly from the speaker.Opening the HomePod to additional music service may be a boon for the product. The speaker has lagged behind rivals like the Amazon Echo in functionality since being introduced in 2018 and owns less than 5% of the smart-speaker market, according to an estimate last week from Strategy Analytics.Also under discussion at Apple is whether to let users set competing music services as the default with Siri on iPhones and iPads, the people said. Currently, Apple Music is the default music app. If the company changes the arrangement, a user would be able to play music from Spotify or Pandora automatically when asking Siri for a song.The potential changes to third-party apps on Apple’s devices and the HomePod are still under discussion or early development, and final decisions haven’t been made, the people said. If Apple chooses to go forward with the moves, they could appear as soon as later this year via the upcoming iOS 14 software update and a corresponding HomePod software update, the people said.Apple typically announces major new iPhone and iPad software versions in June, and releases them in September around the launch of new iPhone models. For this year’s update, Apple is also planning to focus on performance and quality because the current version, iOS 13, has been riddled with bugs that upset some users.To contact the reporter on this story: Mark Gurman in Los Angeles at mgurman1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Tom Giles at tgiles5@bloomberg.net, Andrew Pollack, Robin AjelloFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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  • Microsoft Takes Aim at Election Credibility With Wisconsin Software Test
    Bloomberg

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    (Bloomberg) -- Microsoft Corp. tested for the first time in a live election security software that executives say will help restore the trust of voters shaken by claims of fraud, hacking and disinformation in the 2016 election.The company piloted its solution to verify results, a system called ElectionGuard, with voters in Fulton, Wisconsin, who chose candidates Tuesday for state Supreme Court. The process aims to marry existing voting systems with advanced encryption and components of the Xbox game player to spit out data ensuring that ballots are counted.Research indicates “people don’t really trust the outcome of elections,” Tom Burt, Microsoft’s corporate vice president for customer security & trust, said last week while previewing the ElectionGuard test. “When we saw the Russians attacking democracy through trying to influence elections around the world, not just in the U.S., we concluded this was a step we needed to take.“The Seattle-based software giant and local election officials expected about 500 voters in Fulton -- population 3,200 -- to cast ballots and test the system, which was not used to document official results. The system appeared to be operating glitch-free as polls approached the final hour of voting.Microsoft’s tool is one of many proposals to incorporate technology into American elections. From apps to tabulate caucus results to cloud-based voting platforms, election administrators are embracing 2020 as the year of testing novel technology.Proponents say gadgetry can improve accessibility, efficiency and the accuracy of election results, particularly strengthening the credibility of close races. Critics contend that devices connected to the internet can be hacked and used to attack that very credibility.This is where Microsoft said it has found a niche: hacking ElectionGuard wouldn’t accomplish anything, Burt said, because the tool doesn’t individually match a voter with the choices made, it just confirms that the voter’s ballot was tallied.Wisconsin’s election administrators contend tools like ElectionGuard are critical to reinvigorating citizen confidence because of the state’s complex voting systems. Wisconsin hosts about 1,850 autonomous voting jurisdictions, which all select their own voting equipment.The test of Microsoft’s system on Tuesday and the verification aspect is an “important step in involving the voters in that conversation,” said Meagan Wolfe, administrator of the Wisconsin Elections Commission.While Fulton voters found it easy to use, they weren’t sure what problem it solved.“It’s a little bit different and I’m not sure everybody would be receptive to it” across the state, said Connie Zimmerman who has served as town clerk since 2006.While Burt is hopeful that ElectionGuard will be used widely by the 2022 mid-term elections, federal regulations stand in his way. The complex process of certifying voting systems has been under review since before the 2016 election. Without resolution, adoption could be difficult.Burt said Microsoft has been approached by overseas partners seeking to adopt the technology. By making the system open-source and free, election administrators outside the U.S. may be the first to push the technology beyond its initial pilot phase, he said.(Updates with comments about system in the 11th paragraph.)To contact the reporters on this story: Kim Chipman in Chicago at kchipman@bloomberg.net;Kartikay Mehrotra in San Francisco at kmehrotra2@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Andrew Martin at amartin146@bloomberg.net, Andrew Pollack, Peter BlumbergFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Edison, Morse ... Watson? AI Poses Test of Who’s an Inventor
    Bloomberg

    Edison, Morse ... Watson? AI Poses Test of Who’s an Inventor

    (Bloomberg) -- Computers using artificial intelligence are discovering medicines, designing better golf clubs and creating video games.But are they inventors?Patent offices around the world are grappling with the question of who -- if anyone -- owns innovations developed using AI. The answer may upend what’s eligible for protection and who profits as AI transforms entire industries.“There are machines right now that are doing far more on their own than to help an engineer or a scientist or an inventor do their jobs,” said Andrei Iancu, director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. “We will get to a point where a court or legislature will say the human being is so disengaged, so many levels removed, that the actual human did not contribute to the inventive concept.”U.S. law says only humans can obtain patents, Iancu said. That’s why the patent office has been collecting comments on how to deal with inventions created through artificial intelligence and is expected to release a policy paper this year. Likewise, the World Intellectual Property Office, an agency within the United Nations, along with patent and copyright agencies around the world are also trying to figure out whether current laws or practices need to be revised for AI inventions.The debate comes as some of the largest global technology companies look to monetize massive investments in AI. Google’s chief executive officer, Sundar Pichai, has described AI as “more profound than fire or electricity.” Microsoft Corp. has invested $1 billion in the research company Open AI. Both companies have thousands of employees and researchers pushing to advance the state of the art and move AI innovations into products.International Business Machines Corp.’s supercomputer Watson is working with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on a research lab to develop new applications of AI in different industries, and some of China’s biggest companies are giving American companies a run for their money in the field.The European Patent Office last month rejected applications by the owner of an AI “creativity machine” named Dabus, saying that there is a “clear legislative understanding that the inventor is a natural person.” In December, the U.K. Intellectual Property Office turned down similar petitions, noting AI was never contemplated when the law was written.“Increasingly, Fortune 100 companies have AI doing more and more autonomously and they’re not sure if they can find someone who would qualify as an inventor,” said Ryan Abbott, a law professor at the University of Surrey in England. “If you can’t get protection, people may not want to use AI to do these things.”Abbott and Stephen Thaler, founder of St. Louis-based Imagination Engines Inc., filed patent applications in numerous countries for a food container and a “device for attracting enhanced attention,” listing Thaler’s machine Dabus as the inventor.The goal, Abbott said, was to force patent offices to confront the issue. He advocates listing the computer that did the work as the inventor, with the business that owns the machine also owning any patent. It would ensure that companies can get a return on their investment, and maintain a level of honesty about whether it’s a machine or a human that’s doing the work, he said.Businesses “don’t really care who’s listed as an inventor but they do care if they can get a patent,” Abbott said. “We really didn’t design the law with this in mind, so what do we want to do about it?”Still, to many AI experts and researchers, the field is nowhere near advanced enough to consider the idea of an algorithm as an inventor.‘Just Computer Tools’“Listing an AI system as a co-inventor seems like a gimmick rather than a requirement,” said Oren Etzioni, head of the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence in Seattle. “We often use computers as critical tools in generating patentable technology, but we don’t list our tools as co-inventors. AI systems don’t have intellectual property rights -- they are just computer tools.”The current state of the art in AI should put this question off for a long time, said Erik Brynjolfsson, director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy, who suggested the debate might be more appropriate in a “century or two.” Researchers are “very far from artificial general intelligence like ‘The Terminator’.”It’s not just who’s listed as the inventor that is flummoxing patent agencies.Software thus far can’t follow the scientific method -- independently developing a hypothesis and then conducting tests to prove or disprove it. Instead, AI is more often used for “brute force,” where it would simply “churn through a bunch of possibilities and see what works,” said Dana Rao, general counsel for Adobe Inc.Human v. Machine“The question is not ‘Can a machine be an inventor?’ it’s ‘Can a machine invent?”’ Rao said. “It can’t in the traditional way we view invention.”A patent is awarded to something that is “new, useful and non-obvious.” Often, that means figuring out what a person with “ordinary skill” in the field would understand to be new -- for instance, a knowledgeable laboratory researcher. That analysis gets skewed when courts and patent offices have to compare the work of a software program that can analyze an exponentially greater number of options than even a large team of human researchers.“The bar is changing when you use AI,” said Kate Gaudry, a patent lawyer with Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton in Washington. “However this is decided, we have to be consistent.”Iancu likened it to debates a century ago over awarding copyrights to photographs taken with a camera.“Somebody must have created the machine, somebody must have trained the machine and somebody must have pushed the ‘on’ button,” he said. “Do we think those activities are enough to count as human contributions to the invention process? If yes, the current law is enough.”Still, Rao said, there needs to be some way to help companies using AI to protect their ideas. That’s particularly true for copyrights on photographs created through a type of machine learning systems known as Generative Adversarial Networks.“If I want to create images to sell them, there needs to be ways of determining ownership,” Rao said.Abbott said one option would be similar to U.K. law where computer-generated artistic works are given a shorter copyright term than those created by a human. The U.S. requires copyright owners to be human, and famously denied a registration request on behalf a macaque monkey that had taken a “selfie” with a British nature photographer’s camera.The evolution of machine learning and neural networks means that, at some point, the role of humans in certain types of innovation will decrease. In those cases, who will own the inventions is a question that’s critical to companies using AI to develop new products.Iancu said he sees AI as full of promise, and notes that agencies have had to address such weighty questions before, such as genetically modified animals created in a lab, complex mathematics use for cryptography and synthetic DNA.“It’s one of these things where hopefully, the various jurisdictions around the world can discuss these issues before it’s too late, before we have to play catch up,” Iancu said.(Updates with copyright issues in fourth paragraph from the bottom.)To contact the reporters on this story: Susan Decker in Washington at sdecker1@bloomberg.net;Dina Bass in Seattle at dbass2@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jon Morgan at jmorgan97@bloomberg.net, ;Jillian Ward at jward56@bloomberg.net, Elizabeth WassermanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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    Amazon Denies Unfair Advantage in Oracle Challenge of JEDI

    (Bloomberg) -- Amazon.com Inc. is denying a Pentagon cloud-computing contract valued at as much as $10 billion was unfairly tailored for the e-commerce giant.In a court filing made public Monday, Amazon countered rival Oracle Corp.’s claims that bidding for the lucrative cloud deal was tainted by relationships between its employees and former Pentagon officials.Oracle is appealing a July ruling from the U.S. Court of Federal Claims that dismissed its legal challenge of the cloud contract based on claims that the bidding violated procurement law and was marred by conflicts of interest. Amazon Web Services, the company’s cloud unit, has filed a separate lawsuit challenging its loss of the contract known as Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, or JEDI, which was awarded to Microsoft Corp. in October. Amazon claims it lost the bid after interference from the White House and is seeking to interview President Donald Trump in that case.Oracle’s lawsuit claims that Amazon offered two former Pentagon employees jobs at the company while they were working on the contract. In one case, Deap Ubhi, who had worked at Amazon before joining the government, allegedly helped craft the JEDI procurement for weeks after accepting a job offer in October 2017 from AWS, according to the lawsuit.Amazon argued that Oracle’s lawsuit is based on “suspicion and innuendo” and that neither employee that Amazon hired disclosed any “competitively useful” information to the company. Government lawyers have also argued in court that the employees’ input on the JEDI procurement was minimal.Representatives for the Pentagon and Oracle didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.The U.S. Court of Federal Claims ruled in July that the Pentagon’s contracting officer properly determined the relationships had no adverse impact on the integrity of the acquisition process and that Oracle didn’t have standing to challenge the contract. The Pentagon eliminated Oracle and International Business Machines Corp. from the competition in April 2019.Last week a federal judge temporarily blocked Microsoft from working on the Pentagon cloud project while Amazon’s lawsuit is litigated. The Pentagon’s JEDI project is designed to consolidate the department’s cloud computing infrastructure and modernize its technology systems. The contract is worth as much as $10 billion over a decade.To contact the reporter on this story: Naomi Nix in Washington at nnix1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Sara Forden at sforden@bloomberg.net, Elizabeth WassermanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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    Reuters

    20 years after dot-com peak, tech dominance keeps investors on edge

    SAN FRANCISCO/NEW YORK (Reuters) - As Wall Street approaches the 20th anniversary of the piercing of the dot-com bubble, today's decade-old rally led by a few small players shows some similarities that cautious investors are keeping an eye on. March 11, 2000 marked the beginning of a crash of overly-inflated stocks that would last over two years, lead to the failure of investor favorites including Worldcom and Pets.com and take over 13 years for Wall Street to recover from.

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