Wall Street

  • Asian stock markets follow Wall Street’s lead downward this morning

    Thailand’s media giant Nation Multimedia Group say they are poised to ride the new “digital wave” to tide over the industry disruption brought about by technology, group chief Shine Bunnag said while outlining his vision.

    Shine, who is chairman of NMG’s executive committee, said in an interview with Krungthep Turakij newspaper that with the disruption caused by technology, media was one of the first businesses to be severely impacted as people increasingly became consumers of online media.

    “This resulted in advertising revenue moving away from traditional media, such as newspaper, radio, or even television which became a victim of intense competition due to the high number of channels and the battle for eyeballs with the digital media.”

    “We will fully penetrate the potential of digital media, which will be our major cash-cow business to generate revenue for the group over the next 10 years and make up for the slide in revenue of traditional media,” he said.

    Shine says that he aims to increase the revenue contribution from digital media from 15% at present to 25% in the next two years through two newly established business units – ‘Digital’ and ‘Digital Intelligent’.

    Nation Multimedia Group aims to counter tech 'disruption' | News by The Thaiger

    “The new Digital business unit will combine all online platforms of the group under one roof so that we can synergise our strengths. We found that today our online media have combined page views of about 10 million a day, which is one of the highest in Thailand’s media industry.”

    “Our online platforms, however, plan to increase the number of page views to about 20 million a day within the first six months of establishing the new business unit, which will kick-off in September.”

    Shine said that 10 million page views is the group’s database and the “new crude oil”, which is a high-value asset and the group’s community will create more value addition.

    “We will follow the behaviour of these 10 million viewers in the digital world for who they are, and what their preferred interests are. Such valuable data will be used for our content production as well as ad sales, which will directly target the consumers, which are currently fragmented.”

    “That is the duty of the new Digital Intelligent business unit, most of whose staff have been recruited from the technology field.”

    Shine said the group’s change in direction has been necessitated by the digital game and the media disruption.

    “It will be goal of the digital media to generate sustainable revenues and to promote credibility, which is the heart of the media business.”

    “I want our ad buyers to be able to measure their ad campaigns banking on our media. Our media people will also work independently and not worry about the impact of their written work on revenue,” he said.

    Shine said advertising revenue from the group’s television business will be flat or slow down, as younger consumers aged below 30 watch less TV and spend more time with alternative media to view their preferred content, such as re-runs of soap operas and variety programs.

    “The golden age of the television business is over, similar to print media.”


  • Markets underwhelmed by US growth surge

    Wall Street stocks on Friday finished the week on a downbeat note, with the tech-rich Nasdaq sinking 1.5 percent on worries that US economic growth has peaked.


    The American economy expanded at an annual rate of 4.1 percent in the second quarter, matching analyst expectations, due in part to strong consumer spending and a trade-war driven bump in exports, according to Commerce Department data. That is the fastest growth in almost four years.

    President Donald Trump hailed the figure as an “American economic miracle,” promising more impressive growth ahead.

    But US investors seemed to be betting on the opposite, sending stocks lower and punishing technology companies especially hard.

    Ablin said the tech sector was vulnerable because it is tied more closely to growth than some sectors and because of worries that rising political and social scrutiny of Facebook and others that could crimp growth.

    The declines in the United States also followed a largely disappointing round of earnings, with Exxon Mobil, Intel and Twitter all falling significantly.

    European shares closed with higher gains. London finished 0.5 percent higher, with shares in telecoms group BT rising more than 5 percent after posting better-than-expected first-quarter earnings.

    Paris climbed 0.6 percent while Frankfurt added 0.4 percent in value, aided partly by this week’s easing in EU-US trade tensions.

    Asian stocks mostly edged higher Friday with Tokyo buoyed once more by a weaker yen, which helps exporters.

    ‘Come off the boil’

    While the strong US growth rate was welcome, analysts said investors had plenty to worry about from here on.

    “The US economy is likely to come off the boil in the coming quarters as the boost to growth delivered by the tax cuts begins to wear off, trade restrictions and an overall slowing of the global economy start to weigh on exports, and further interest rate hikes tighten financial conditions,” said economist Pablo Shah at the Centre for Economics and Business Research.

    He said the growth rate was nonetheless impressive and that the strong labor market together with still-accommodative fiscal and monetary policies meant the United States was likely to remain at the top of the growth pack among advanced nations.

    Key figures at 2100 GMT

    New York – Dow: DOWN 0.3 percent to 25,451.06 (close)

    New York – S&P 500: DOWN 0.7 percent at 2,818.82 (close)

    New York – Nasdaq Composite Index: DOWN 1.5 percent at 7,737.42 (close)

    London – FTSE 100: UP 0.5 percent at 7,701.31 (close)

    Frankfurt – DAX 30: UP 0.4 percent at 12,860.40 (close)

    Paris – CAC 40: UP 0.6 percent at 5,511.76 (close)

    EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.6 percent at 3,528.08 (close)

    Tokyo – Nikkei 225: UP 0.6 percent at 22,712.75 (close)

    Hong Kong – Hang Seng: UP 0.1 percent at 28,804.28 (close)

    Shanghai – Composite: DOWN 0.3 percent at 2,873.59 (close)

    Euro/dollar: UP at $1.1658 from $1.1643 at 2100 GMT

    Pound/dollar: DOWN at $1.3107 from $1.3109

    Dollar/yen: DOWN at 110.99 yen from 111.23 yen

    Oil – Brent Crude: DOWN 25 cents at $74.29 per barrel

    Oil – West Texas Intermediate: DOWN 92 cents at $68.69 per barrel

    The Nation

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