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5 Top Stories

Microsoft Bests Google; Amazon in Europe; Meta in Court.

Every day, we handpick the 5 Top Stories stock market investors need to know. In 5 minutes, you’ll learn the stocks, CEOs, and money managers moving markets.

Tech Giants Go Toe-to-Toe

Microsoft [MSFT] was widely adjudged to have outperformed Alphabet [GOOGL] after their respective earnings reports were released on Tuesday. “Microsoft was certainly in front of AI faster and they’re monetising it well,” Jefferies analyst Brent Thill told the Financial Times. Microsoft’s revenue was up 13% to $56.5bn, the highest in six quarters, while Google’s key cloud unit reported operating income of $266m, well below estimates of $434m. MSFT was up 4% on the news, while GOOGL was down 6% in after-hours trading.

Amazon Sovereign in Europe

Amazon’s [AMZN] cloud-computing unit, Amazon Web Services (AWS), is to launch a sovereign cloud in Europe for governments and customers in highly regulated industries. The data will be stored on servers inside the EU, and only accessible to EU-based AWS workers. Elsewhere, in the first of its transparency reports mandated by the EU Digital Services Act, Amazon said it has more than 181 million users and over 150,000 employees in the region.

Meta in Court Ahead of Earnings

California and New York are among 33 US states suing Meta Platforms [META], saying that its social media platform Instagram is behind a mental health crisis among young people. “Meta has harnessed powerful and unprecedented technologies to entice, engage, and ultimately ensnare youth and teens,” reads the complaint filed in an Oakland, California federal court. Wednesday saw fevered speculation around Meta’s imminent quarterly earnings report.

Pivot to EVs Evidenced at Japan Mobility Show

Top Japanese carmakers made major announcements at the Japan Mobility Show on Wednesday. Toyota [7203.T] said it is designing a Lexus electric vehicle (EV), boasting batteries with a range of some 1000 km. Furthermore, the luxury car unit is planning to develop its own charging network in Japan. Honda [7267.T] is halting EV development with General Motors [GM] due to changes in the business climate, while Subaru [7270.T] is working to de-risk its EV battery supply chains.

Major Crunch for French Fintech

Worldline [WLN.PA] shares fell a record 59%, wiping out €3.8bn from its market cap, after the French payments company slashed its sales outlook. The firm is only the latest EU fintech to report major losses. On Tuesday, London-listed peer CAB Payments [CABP.L] plummeted 72%. Investors “are getting very picky instead of giving companies the benefit of the doubt like it was during the zero interest rates era,” Janet Mui, Head of Market Analysis at RBC Brewin Dolphin, told Bloomberg.

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