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Advanced Micro Devices, Inc.
Zoom Video Communications, Inc.
Vipshop Holdings Limited
GSX Techedu Inc.
Cable One, Inc.
Coupa Software Incorporated
Generac Holdings Inc.
Legg Mason, Inc.
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Vir Biotechnology, Inc.
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Deciphera Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Forty Seven, Inc.
(Bloomberg) -- Tesla Inc. tends to pull out all the stops at the end of each quarter, with Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk often rallying the troops to deliver as many vehicles as possible to customers.This approach probably didn’t work well for Tesla in March, with shelter-in-place orders and distancing guidelines around the globe limiting how many vehicles the company could hand over. While Musk tried to salvage the quarter by introducing a “touchless” delivery option in select locations, the coronavirus pandemic is expected to have done a number on demand for all automakers.Analysts on average estimate Tesla delivered roughly 77,400 cars worldwide last quarter, the first to include hand-overs of the new Model Y crossover. While that would be a jump from a disappointing result a year ago, it also would mark a more than 30% drop from the record deliveries Tesla reported for the last three months of 2019.“Tesla typically delivers a disproportionate share of its quarter’s units in the last two weeks of the quarter,” Adam Jonas, an analyst at Morgan Stanley, wrote in a report Monday. “Given the disruption to production and logistics bandwidth, we would be prepared for a weak number.”Jonas, whose projection for 88,000 deliveries is the highest among six analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News, warned that risk to his estimate is “skewed to the downside.” He expects investors to turn their attention in the coming days to how demand shapes up in the second quarter, the amount of cash Tesla starts burning and the battery day event Musk has said will happen sometime in April.Musk warned back in July -- long before the coronavirus outbreak -- that the first quarter of this year would be “tough.” Chief Financial Officer Zachary Kirkhorn echoed this during Tesla’s last earnings call in late January, noting that the auto industry is “always impacted by seasonality.”While Tesla issued a forecast in January for 2020 deliveries to comfortably exceed 500,000, the company was “in the the early stages of understanding if and to what extent we may be temporarily impacted by the coronavirus,” he said.The impact the virus has had on the industry has been far more severe and widespread than many were expecting then. Business activity in much of the U.S. and Europe has virtually ground to a halt, and Tesla’s factory in Fremont, California, suspended production on March 23. Countless would-be car buyers are staying home, unemployment is rising and consumer confidence is plummeting.Tesla issued an “operational update” on March 19 to announce the plant shutdown and the touchless delivery offering, in which customers can unlock their new car using an app and complete any paperwork sitting inside. Other automakers are promoting similar services, though Tesla may have an advantage by having embraced an online sales model.While the company didn’t comment on its guidance for 2020 deliveries in that update, it did say the $2.3 billion raised in a February equity offering left it with a sum of cash that will be “sufficient to successfully navigate an extended period of uncertainty.”Tesla did still deliver some cars as the quarter came to a close, even to areas hit hard by the virus. Howard Feinstein, who lives in a rural community outside Seattle, took delivery of his $69,200 Model Y Performance on March 28. Two Tesla employees dropped off the vehicle directly to his house.“Tesla went out of their way to make sure that we didn’t have any contact,” Feinstein said in a phone interview. “We went over the plan by phone prior to their arrival, and the employees always stood more than 10 feet away from me.”Tesla is far from alone in idling production in the U.S., and the company now has a second plant, near Shanghai, that restarted assembly lines with the help of government authorities in China. The carmaker typically doesn’t give a breakdown in its deliveries reports of results by country or region.“Given that China was shut down in February and probably slow in March, plus the U.S. froze in March, I’m expecting horrible numbers from everyone,” David Whiston, a Morningstar Inc. analyst, said in an email. “China and the U.S. were 64% of Tesla’s revenue last year for the full year, so a collapse there will be painful.”Tesla shares, which closed up as much as 112% for the year in mid-February, briefly gave up all 2020 gains when equity markets reached a low point midway through the month. The stock was back up 25% as of Tuesday’s close.“We think impacts of current production downtime are beginning to be incorporated into estimates, but are monitoring longer-term virus ramifications, including the potential for a global recession,” Ben Kallo, a Robert W. Baird & Co. analyst, wrote in a report Tuesday. “We think a longer-term economic downturn could adversely impact demand for several quarters, which could be an overhang on shares.”For 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.
(Bloomberg) -- Tesla Inc.’s lone U.S. assembly plant posed a risk to public health by staying open for days in spite of San Francisco Bay area shelter-in-place orders, according to documents obtained through a California public records request.Officials with the city of Fremont, California, told Tesla in a series of conversations over several days that its factory was not considered an essential business, and that it therefore needed to comply with an Alameda County order issued March 16. The electric-car maker announced March 19 that it would suspend production four days later.The documents provide a more detailed glimpse of what was a contentious days-long debate between local authorities and Tesla, which sought to stay open based on how the federal government defines critical infrastructure sectors. Fremont’s police chief, the deputy city manager, the county’s health officer and its assistant counsel were among the officials who got involved in the dispute before Tesla backed down.Representatives for Tesla didn’t respond to a request for comment on the documents.The Bay area was the first region in the U.S. to enact shelter-in-place orders, a massive effort impacting more than 7 million people. Since then, the coronavirus has wreaked havoc on communities across the country and put immense strain on the global economy. Alameda County had 294 confirmed cases of Covid-19 -- the disease caused by the coronavirus -- as of Tuesday, according to the health department. Seven have died.Virtual MeetingHours before Tesla announced plans to suspend production, Kimberly Petersen, Fremont’s police chief, and other city officials held a virtual meeting on March 19 to follow up on a determination reached the day before: the company had to cease all activities except for minimum basic operations.In a March 21 letter to Tesla, she recounted the city’s efforts to seek clarification as to whether the carmaker was an essential business by consulting with Scott Dickey, the assistant counsel for the county. Dickey relayed a determination from Erica Pan, Alameda County’s health officer.“Mr. Dickey informed city staff that Dr. Pan does not consider Tesla to be an essential business, but rather, considers Tesla’s manufacturing plant to be a public health risk,” Petersen wrote in the letter.Tesla’s plant employs roughly 10,000 people, but many workers commute from elsewhere, including California’s Central Valley. The company told employees last week that two staffers at unspecified offices were confirmed to have Covid-19.A Nevada television station reported Sunday that a Tesla worker at its battery factory near Reno had tested positive, citing an email that cell supplier Panasonic Corp. sent to employees. Tesla had more than 48,000 employees worldwide at the end of 2019.‘Staged Shutdown’When Tesla representatives including Rohan Patel, a senior director of policy and business development who used to work in the Obama administration, met Fremont officials on March 19, they said the company intended to comply with the order, though it needed to conduct a “staged shutdown” of the plant.The two sides agreed that all vehicle manufacturing would cease on March 23. Employees who remained on site would complete work at the end of assembly lines to protect the value of vehicles and batteries, while others would perform basic operations such as security, maintenance and cleaning, all while following social-distancing requirements.“You explicitly agreed to that understanding,” the police chief later wrote. “If you were to transition to manufacturing ventilators, or other equipment intended to aid in the fight against Covid-19, these activities would be permitted.”Tesla Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk tweeted March 18, the day before the meeting with Fremont officials, that the company would make ventilators “if there is a shortage.” The carmaker has since held discussions with Medtronic Plc, a leading ventilator maker based in Dublin, Ireland, but there’s no indication yet that Tesla will play a role in manufacturing the medical devices.The Right ThingDuring another virtual meeting on Sunday, March 22, Tesla briefly reversed its decision to close its plant. Alan Prescott, Tesla’s acting general counsel, argued the county’s health order had been superseded by a new statewide order issued by California Governor Gavin Newsom. The order included an exception for “critical infrastructure sectors,” a category Tesla claimed included its plant and thus meant the company could continue conducting full operations.After Petersen, the police chief, told Tesla during the meeting that the city was rejecting that argument, Prescott said the company would wind down operations because it was “the right thing to do.”A tweet Musk sent two days earlier suggested Tesla didn’t have a choice -- the factory couldn’t stay open because Tesla’s parts suppliers weren’t going to keep running their plants, he wrote.Petersen told Tesla she would like to schedule an inspection of the company’s facilities on March 24 to ensure compliance.“In closing, I would like to reiterate that the city of Fremont highly values Tesla as a partner and appreciates what you do for our economy and community,” Petersen wrote in one of her emails to the company. “We are extremely grateful for your willingness to collaborate in our fight against the spread of Covid-19 by placing public health ahead of all other priorities.”(Updates the number of Alameda County coronavirus cases in the fifth paragraph)For 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.
Daily U.S. user volumes rose to a record 4.84 million on Monday for Zoom, as millions of children switched to virtual learning programs and companies asked employees to work from home to contain the outbreak. Business-focused Teams was used by 1.56 million users on the same day, while Slack saw less than 500,000 users. Zoom declined to comment on usage statistics, but its active users in March were 151% higher on average from a year earlier, according to Apptopia.
The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Alphabet, Procter & Gamble, Philip Morris, Novo Nordisk and Tesla
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- The coronavirus is changing the way we work. As more governments implement stricter shelter-in-place orders, corporations and their employees are scrambling to figure out how to conduct business operations in a work-at-home world. First, new hardware is required. Sales of monitors, webcams and laptops are soaring as people build out their home offices. But that’s the easy part.The bigger issue is how to enable similar levels of productivity without the many brief conversations and in-person meetings during a typical day at the office. To accomplish this, companies are increasingly turning to a handful upstarts in the aptly named workforce collaboration software category. These are the tools, initially designed for use in an office, which the world has now discovered work so well when trying to stay connected remotely, from video conferencing to electronic messaging platforms. And as they gain traction in the home workspace, it seems more and more likely they’ll stick once we’re all back in the office again, accelerating a trend toward greater usage that was happening anyway.Three tools that particularly stand out come from Zoom Video Communications Inc., Slack Technologies, Inc. and Smartsheet Inc. What these companies have in common is they are upstarts, their products are arguably best-in-class for what they do and they’ve all seen their shares jump amid the widening coronavirus crisis.As recently as a couple months ago, the companies faced challenges in trying to raise awareness for their offerings. Microsoft Corp. and Cisco Systems, Inc. have much larger marketing budgets and deeper relationships with Fortune 500 tech buyers. Well that is less of a problem now. The need to just get work done has become a showcase opportunity for the best-of-breed software vendors to break through the noise and put some distance between their products and the tech-industry goliaths’ less-capable offerings.Zoom is further along in the brand-awareness process. By now, everyone knows how the company is thriving as the video-conferencing pure play of choice. Earlier this month, Zoom CEO Eric Yuan said on a call, “Given this coronavirus, I think that overnight almost every business really understands they needed a tool like this. This will dramatically change the landscape.” Last week, Bernstein’s survey of 516 working adults revealed Zoom’s momentum continues to rise. Based on an analysis of responses, the data implied Zoom’s boost in usage among knowledge workers was more than double, versus any other vendor since the coronavirus crisis began. Zoom’s success will have ramifications for when the crisis ends too. As businesses get acclimated to using inexpensive, high-quality videoconferencing, executives may realize the prior level of travel spend simply isn’t worth the cost.Smartsheet is also flourishing in the moment. The company makes software that automates business processes and workflows without requiring technical programming skills. For example, it can replace the manual data entry into Excel spreadsheets by using automatically updated web-enabled forms, improving accuracy and productivity. Earlier this month, the company posted 58% quarterly billings growth for its fiscal fourth quarter and said it wasn’t seeing a negative impact from the coronavirus.And then there’s Slack. The messaging platform has seen a surge in demand for its service, and as a hard-core user myself, I can vouch for how Slack has improved communications with colleagues inside and outside the office. Compared to email, it enables a faster form of iterative communication, similar to a back-and-forth real-life discussion with a co-worker, saving time and increasing understanding. Perhaps even more important, the software offers a searchable repository of conversations, documents and files that enables an efficient knowledge transfer to other team members.Many companies have started realizing Slack’s utility in recent weeks. Late Wednesday — in a now-epic tweet thread chronicling the explosion in demand for Slack and pressures on the company to meet it — CEO Butterfield revealed updated growth metrics for the current quarter, and they were jaw-dropping. In about two months, Slack had acquired 9,000 new paid customers, a figure 80% higher than the roughly 5,000 in each of the prior two quarters. Average messages sent per day per user were also up 20%.Slack shares rose 10% Thursday as investors cheered the improving metrics, and have largely held that gain since. It’s important to note that even after these gains, Slack is trading only a few dollars above its $26-a-share initial direct-listing price in June 2019, and for much of its time as a public company has traded below that level. Moreover, there is no guarantee the rising usage will translate into a permanent customer base; there will be some users, perhaps, who drop the service when things are working more normally. And there may be major corporate layoffs and losses from economic shocks that could make larger enterprise deals more difficult to close. Butterfield himself is aware of this, saying Friday in an interview with Bloomberg Television that the company’s current pace of growth “is just not sustainable … We would have the whole world on it in a couple of months if we kept going.”But as workers form new ingrained habits using these tools, they will become that much harder to give up. This points to better sustainable results for Zoom, Slack and Smartsheet over time.This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Tae Kim is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering technology. He previously covered technology for Barron's, following an earlier career as an equity analyst.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment on how many ventilators it has to offer, or how the company will prioritize requests. Governments across the globe have appealed to automakers and aerospace companies help procure or make ventilators and other medical equipment amid a fast-spreading coronavirus outbreak, which has infected more than 777,000 people globally and killed over 37,500. In United States, states hard hit by the pandemic have pleaded with the Trump administration and manufacturers to speed up production of ventilators to cope with a surge in patients.
Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment on how many ventilators it has to offer, or how the company will prioritise requests. Governments across the globe have appealed to automakers and aerospace companies help procure or make ventilators and other medical equipment amid a fast-spreading coronavirus outbreak, which has infected more than 777,000 people globally and killed over 37,500. In United States, states hard hit by the pandemic have pleaded with the Trump administration and manufacturers to speed up production of ventilators to cope with a surge in patients.
The British pound has had a volatile session during Tuesday as we continue to test the 1.25 region. It has shown some resiliency but does look a bit overextended.
Here we focus on a basket of stocks that is benefiting from a lengthy spell of social distancing in the United States and across other countries.
Many business leaders and contractors are not eligible for the same government coronavirus pay support as their workers or freelancers.
DexCom shares have soared 45% since March 18. The connected glucose monitoring systems firm is also expected to continue to grow and DXCM stock might be somewhat immune to the current coronavirus economic uncertainty...
(Bloomberg) -- A fellow co-founder of PayPal Holdings Inc. said Elon Musk and others probably regret comments they made dismissing the seriousness of the novel coronavirus, adding that he’s hopeful the billionaire will now help in the relief effort.“Everyone who has made fun of this thing as a tougher flu or a silly problem that is going to go away with the first ray of sunshine is probably slightly embarrassed by those comments,” Max Levchin, who at 23 co-founded a company that would eventually become PayPal, said Monday on Bloomberg Television. “That excludes no one.”Musk, who now runs Tesla Inc. and SpaceX, initially downplayed the virality of the coronavirus and fatality rates related to Covid-19. He called panic over the illness “dumb” and predicted that overreaction would do more harm than the disease itself before starting to help by donating masks to hospital workers and buying ventilators.Musk has told his Twitter followers that Tesla can be most helpful by purchasing ventilators and helping deliver them more efficiently. While he tweeted that he had an engineering discussion with ventilator maker Medtronic Plc on March 21, it’s unclear whether Tesla or Space Exploration Technologies Corp. will play a role in manufacturing the desperately needed medical devices.“You do have this spirit of Silicon Valley, that when given direction or given a good idea, we know how to mobilize and inspire and go through walls and build something,” Levchin, who’s now chief executive officer of fintech company Affirm Inc., said on Bloomberg TV. “And so in that sense, I think if Elon is committing to build ventilators, by god he’s going to build a lot of ventilators, and they’re probably going to be quite good.”For 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.