Apple Sues Israeli Firm NSO Over Spyware, Claiming iPhone Hacks
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Apple Inc. has sued the NSO Group, an Israeli maker of surveillance software, alleging that the company misused Apple's products and services in its attempts to place software on the iPhones of certain users. The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in federal court in San Jose, Calif., alleges that NSO Group engaged in "concerted efforts in 2021 to target and attack Apple customers, Apple products and servers and Apple through dangerous malware and spyware," and seeks to bar NSO Group from using Apple's products. According to security researchers, the Israeli company has developed hacking techniques to install its software on Apple's mobile phones without the user's knowledge or consent. NSO "did not breach data contained on Apple's servers, but did abuse Apple's services and servers to perpetrate attacks," Apple's complaint states. An NSO representative didn't immediately respond to messages seeking comment on the Apple lawsuit.
Concerns about the Corona pandemic led the Swiss stock market sharply lower on Tuesday. The SMI lost 1.2 per cent to 12,367 points. Among the 20 SMI stocks, there were 14 price losers and 6 price gainers. 33.37 (previously: 36.89) million shares were traded. Profits were taken in some stocks that were doing well. Partners Group fell by 4.9 per cent and Lonza by 4.7 per cent. The two pharmaceutical giants ran in different directions. While Novartis gained 1.1 per cent, Roche lost 2.6 per cent. Year-to-date, Novartis is down 5 per cent while Roche is up 22 per cent. Financials showed relative strength, again benefiting from rising market interest rates. UBS gave up 0.6 per cent, Credit Suisse even gained 1 per cent. Among insurers, Zurich Insurance gained 0.2 per cent and Swiss Re 0.5 per cent.
European equity markets closed in the red on Tuesday as investors worried that the rapid rise in new cases of Covid-19 in Europe and restrictions introduced to curb it would impact the region's economy. The Stoxx Europe 600 index lost 1.3% to 479.3 points. In Paris, the CAC 40 and SBF 120 were down 0.9% each. In Frankfurt, the DAX 40 dropped 1.1%, while the FTSE 100 in London rose 0.2%. Italy’s competition watchdog issued more than $225 million in fines to Apple Inc. and Amazon. com Inc., saying they colluded to exclude legitimate resellers of Apple and Beats products from Amazon’s Italian marketplace. The Italian Competition Authority, or AGCM, said Tuesday that it was fining Apple 134.5 million euros ($151.1 million) and Amazon 68.7 million euros ($77.2 million), ordering the U.S. technology giants to allow all resellers of genuine Apple and Beats products on amazon.it. The fines, the latest in a series of antitrust probes and decisions against big tech firms in Europe, stem from a 2018 agreement between Apple and Amazon that let the companies pick which resellers of Apple and Beats products were allowed on amazon.it and ban others, AGCM said. Orange Belgium SA said Tuesday that it is in talks with peer Nethys over the acquisition of a majority stake in telecommunications operator VOO. The Belgian subsidiary of French telecom Orange SA said it had been chosen by Nethys from a competitive selection process to enter negotiations for 75% minus one share of VOO, with an enterprise value of 1.8 billion euros ($2 billion) for the company as a whole. According to this value, the stake in question would be worth around EUR1.28 billion.
The S&P 500 rose Tuesday as gains by cyclical stocks helped overcome losses in technology shares. Rising bond yields and expectations for economic growth powered shares of energy and financial companies while weighing on the growth stocks that have lifted the market in recent months. The broad U.S. stock index gained 7.76 points, or 0.2%, to 4690.70. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 194.55 points, or 0.5%, to 35813.80. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite fell 79.62 points, or 0.5%, to 15775.14. Food manufacturer J.M. Smucker Co. said sales in the second quarter rose, as higher prices and demand helped it navigate higher costs and supply chain challenges. On Tuesday, the company behind Jif peanut butter, its namesake jellies and Folgers coffee said net sales were $2.05 billion in its fiscal second quarter, up from $2.03 billion a year earlier. Analysts polled by FactSet expected $1.95 billion. When adjusted for divestitures and for currency exchange, sales rose 8%. Dell Technologies reported better-than-expected results for its fiscal third quarter ended Oct. 31, driven by strong results from its personal-computer business. The stock is up 1.5% in late trading Tuesday. For the quarter, Dell (ticker: DELL) reported revenue of $28.4 billion, up 21% from a year earlier, and about $1 billion above the Wall Street analyst consensus forecast of $27.4 billion. Non-GAAP profits were $2.37 a share, ahead of the Street at consensus at $2.30. On a non-GAAP basis, the company earned $4.87 a share.
The Asian stock exchanges show a mixed trend in the middle of the week. Trading in Shanghai and Hong Kong showed slight gains. Tencent and Alibaba are down 1.3 per cent and 1.4 per cent respectively. The Alibaba share even marked a new all-time low of 130.90 Hong Kong dollars in the course of trading.
US treasury yields were mostly higher, especially the back end, with the 10-year adding 0.031 percentage point to 1.656%, as Fed Chair Powell gets the renomination bid from President Biden and markets see the Fed behind the curve.
Dt. Bank lowers the Rio Tinto target to EUR 5,200 (6,000) – Hold
MS lowers Julius Baer to Equalweight (Overw.) – Target CHF 70 (75)
Dt. Bank raises the Poste Italiane target to EUR 12.10 (11.90) – Hold
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