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Netflix shares downbeat after revealing Squid Game sequel

In today’s top stories, news that Netflix’s Squid Game series was returning lifted shares in Bucket Studio — the agency of the show’s lead actor — while the streaming stock ended the day down. Meanwhile, China’s tech sector is rebounding as restrictions lift, Tesla announced a three-for-one stock split, Apple competition with Microsoft intensifies and hotel stocks introduce automation features.  

Netflix’s Squid Game hopes     

The record-breaking Korean import Squid Game is returning to Netflix [NFLX]. The streaming service will be hoping the show brings back viewers who may have paused their subscription. The loss of 200,000 subscribers globally in the first quarter has contributed to the stock falling 70% year-to-date. Shares in Bucket Studio [066410.KQ], which owns a stake in the agency that represents the show’s lead actor, closed 29% higher on Monday. Netflix, on the other hand, closed 4% lower that day.

Apple’s next-generation chip

Microsoft [MSFT] has had a monopoly on the operating system (OS) market for years. As of May, it had a 75% share of the desktop OS market versus a 14% share held by Apple [AAPL]. But the Cupertino company has just announced its next-generation M2 chip, which has been designed specifically for the Mac. Investors will be paying close attention to how big a bite Apple can take out of Microsoft’s dominance.

Tesla proposes stock split

In surprising news, Tesla [TSLA] has proposed a three-for-one stock split. In its filing with the SEC, the EV maker said, “we believe the stock split would help reset the market price of our common stock so that our employees will have more flexibility in managing their equity”. It’ll also make stock more affordable to retail investors, which could give the company’s valuation a much-needed jumpstart.

China bucks selloff trend

While stocks slide in the US, China is bucking the bearish trend. The CSI 300 index had its best two-week rally since February 2021. Hua Tong, a fund manager at Shenzhen Zhengyuan Investment Co, told Bloomberg that the selling in recent months had been overdone. “The recovery rally is far from over… the suppressed demand and backlog in orders from the lockdown will bring about a big spike in activity in coming months,” Tong said.

Hotels to go contactless

As the hospitality industry seeks to recover from the pandemic, attention is turning to what automation can do to improve hotel management and customer experience. Some 62% of 633 hoteliers surveyed by travel market research site Skift indicated that contactless will drive the hotel experience over the next three years. Wyndham Hotels and Resorts [WH] is piloting a system where guests can tip housekeeping staff with their smartphone by scanning a QR code in their room.

EasyJet’s clipped wings

Flight delays and cancellations are proving to be major headwinds for easyJet [EZJ.L], which has sent the share price nosediving 11% in the last week. Nevertheless, the carrier is hoping that these problems will be short-term and that the share price will take flight again. It’s expecting to operate at 97% of pre-pandemic capacity between July and September.

Adobe’s software slowdown

Slowing growth has dragged the Adobe [ADBE] share price to its lowest level in two years. Ahead of Q2 earnings, the software provider has been making moves to strengthen its offerings in digital advertising and experience, and so that it’s less reliant on product sales. This includes a partnership with Home Depot [HD] to help the retailer to identify where it can optimise its website to deliver a more personalised customer experience.


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