Apple Takes on Meta in Race to Make Headsets the Next Big Thing
Topic of the day
Apple’s new mixed-reality headset is a bet that the future of computing is the metaverse. A lot of other companies think so too. The iPhone maker’s $3,499 Vision Pro headset, set to go on sale next year, joins a crowded field from rivals such as Meta Platforms, TikTok owner ByteDance, Samsung Electronics and Sony. They are predicting that entertainment, work and leisure will take place in virtual reality or with digital content interspersed with the real world. Most of the companies that have launched products so far have done so with the goal of keeping prices low enough to entice millions of new users. Apple opted for a different approach: showing off everything such a device is capable of at a price point that far fewer people will find accessible, experts and developers say. Meta and ByteDance offer headsets for less than $500. Instead of instantly trying to compete with them, Apple is playing a longer-term game of slowly developing a high-quality device and bringing the cost down over time. After the presentation of Apple's "Vision Pro" virtual reality glasses, shares initially reached a record high of 184.95 dollars on Monday before ending the day below 180 dollars. Apple stocks fell a further 0.2 per cent to $179.21 on Tuesday.
Recovering from the previous day's losses, the Swiss stock market closed slightly higher on Tuesday. The SMI improved by 0.5 per cent to 11,468 points. Among the 20 SMI stocks, there were 17 price gainers and 3 price losers. 37.36 (previously: 32.64) million shares were traded. Pharmaceutical stocks Novartis (+0.2%) and Roche (+0.5%), in particular, were sought after. Deutsche Bank raised its target price by five francs to 110 francs, which strengthened the Novartis shares. The analysts confirmed their buy recommendation. Kühne & Nagel, on the other hand, lost 1.8 per cent after an acquisition in South Africa. No purchase price was mentioned. "This is normal bread & butter business," commented a trader. Buying freight companies along its own routes is common, he added. The Swiss are buying South Africa's Morgan Cargo. The aim is to strengthen the connection between South Africa, Great Britain and Kenya.
European stocks ticked lower on Tuesday, as concerns over the health of the global economy persisted, and as investors look to next week's central bank policy decisions. The Stoxx Europe 600 index gained 0.4% to 461.7 points. In Paris, the CAC 40 and SBF 120 advanced by 0.1% and 0.2% respectively. The DAX 40 in Frankfurt pocketed 0.2%, while the FTSE 100 in London added 0.4%. Publicis (+3.5%) announced the acquisition of Corra, a US agency which helps brands make decisions across their e-commerce ecosystem, for an undisclosed sum. Analysts at Citi put the price at between €50 and €100 million and see the acquisition as strategic for Sapient, the Publicis subsidiary specialising in the digital transformation of businesses. Atos lost 1.2%. Sycomore Asset Management has nominated Léo Apotheker, former head of the American Hewlett-Packard and German SAP groups, to replace Bertrand Meunier as CEO of the IT services group. Aircraft engine and equipment manufacturer Safran (-0.2%) announced that it was in discussions about acquiring certain flight control and actuation activities from US group Raytheon Technologies through a competitive process.
U.S. stocks edged up Tuesday as the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite each clinched fresh closing highs for the year. The broad stock-market benchmark gained 0.2%, reaching its highest close since last August. The tech-heavy Nasdaq rose 0.4% to close at its highest level since April 2022. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ticked up less than 0.1%. Stocks have rebounded recently, with the S&P 500 within striking distance of exiting its longest bear market since the 1940s. The broad index finished less than 10 points shy of entering a new bull market, which would represent a 20% jump from its recent low set in October. The rally has been powered primarily by a slim cohort of megacap technology stocks. Apple, the most heavily weighted stock in the S&P 500, is up 38% this year, while Nvidia has gained 165% as investors flock to AI plays. Financial stocks led the market on Tuesday, with shares of regional banks recovering some losses from the spring’s selloff. The KBW Nasdaq Regional Banking Index rose about 5%. Comerica, Fifth Third and Zions were among the top gainers in the sector. Shares of Coinbase dropped 12% after the Securities and Exchange Commission sued the crypto company for allegedly violating securities law. The SEC charged Coinbase for operating as an unregistered broker-dealer, a day after the regulators sued crypto exchange Binance. Boeing shares fell 0.7 per cent. The aircraft manufacturer reportedly found new problems with its 787 Dreamliner planes. Shares in GitLab rallied. The software company beat market expectations with its quarterly figures. The outlook was also better than expected. The share price shot up 31.2 per cent.
Asian stocks were mixed on Wednesday. In Hong Kong, the HSI closes 1.0 per cent higher. The Shanghai Composite remains unchanged. In Japan, economic concerns predominate, the Nikkei-225 loses 0.8 per cent and relinquishes initial gains - burdened by a strengthening yen being a burden regarding the competitiveness of the Japanese export economy. In South Korea, on the other hand, the Kospi rises by 0.2 per cent.
U.S. government debt yields were slightly higher on Tuesday in cautious trading ahead of next week’s Federal Reserve policy meeting. The 10-year Treasury note was yielding 3.689%, virtually unchanged. The 2-year Treasury note yield rose by 4 basis points to 4.518%.
Target price Leonteq: Credit Suisse lowers to CHF 70 (75) - Outperform
Rating BKW: UBS cuts to Sell (Buy) - Target 150 (155) CHF
Price target Ypsomed: Credit Suisse upgrades to CHF 295 (260) - Outperform
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