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$3.4 billion cybersecurity company CrowdStrike has filed to go public

Tue, 05/14/2019 - 5:07pm  |  Clusterstock

  • Crowdstrike, a cybersecurity startup valued at $3.4 billion, filed a public S-1 on Tuesday, officially launching its IPO process.
  • The cybersecurity company plans to list on the Nasdaq under the ticker "CRWD."
  • Crowdstrike sells an end-point security solution which competes with the Blackberry-acquired Cylance as well as startup SentinelOne.
  • The startup is backed by investors including Google's CapitalG and Accel.
  • Read more on the Business Insider homepage.

Crowdstrike, a cybersecurity startup valued at $3.4 billion, filed to go public on Tuesday.

The company, which is backed by Google's CapitalG and Accel, plans to list on the Nasdaq under the ticker "CRWD." 

The IPO is led by underwriters Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, and Barclays.

Crowdstrike sells an end-point security solution which competes with Cylance, a cybersecurity company acquired by Blackberry for $1.4 billion last year, as well as the startup SentinelOne. 

Read more: Crowdstrike's partnership with Dell is shaking up the cybersecurity landscape ahead of a planned IPO

The company generated $250 million in revenue in fiscal 2019, which ended on January 31, up 110% from $118.8 million in revenue the year before. Its 2018 revenue was up 125% from $52.7 million in 2017.

The company lost $140.1 million in fiscal 2019, up from $135.5 million in losses in 2018 and $91.3 million in 2017.

SEE ALSO: Here's what you need to know about Fastly, the fast-growing unicorn startup that could go public this week at a valuation of $1.45 billion

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: 14 details in 'Game of Thrones' season 8 episode 4 you may have missed

The cannabis producer Tilray jumps after beating on sales and posting a bigger-than-expected loss (TLRY)

Tue, 05/14/2019 - 4:38pm  |  Clusterstock

  • Tilray, the cannabis producer, reported first-quarter results Tuesday afternoon.
  • Shares jumped 6% in after-hours trading as sales topped expectations, but the company posted a wider-than-expected loss.
  • Watch Tilray trade live.

Tilray, the Canadian cannabis producer, reported a first-quarter loss on Tuesday that was wider than analysts forecast, but shares jumped in extended trading as revenue topped expectations.

Here's what Tilray reported, compared with what Wall Street analysts surveyed by Bloomberg were expecting:

  • Adjusted loss per share: $0.27 (-$0.24 expected)
  • Revenue: $23 million ($21.4 million expected)

Tilray shares have been on a wild ride over the last year, soaring as high as $300 last September before sinking into year-end. They finished at $48.74 on Tuesday, down 84% from their peak.

The rise and fall comes as investing in the cannabis industry has garnered mainstream attention, with a number of US states exploring medical and/or recreational marijuana legalization.

Recreational marijuana is now legal in 10 US states, while medical marijuana is legal in 33. Canada, where Tilray is headquartered, last fall legalized marijuana for all adults.

Tilray said the total kilogram equivalents sold during the first quarter grew more than twofold compared to the same time last year, to 3,012 kilograms from 1,299 kilograms. At the same time, the average net selling price per gram fell to $5.60 from $5.94.

"As we expand our operations around the world, we remain focused on making disciplined investments to maximize the multiple paths to value creation we are aggressively pursuing for our visionary investors," Brendan Kennedy, the president and CEO of Tilray, said in the release.

Mainstream big-money investors have gotten in on the action. Earlier this year, Jefferies became the second Wall Street investment firm to publish sell-side research on the industry, following Cowen's pioneering analyst Vivian Azer.

More broadly, Tilray's financial picture may start brightening over the next few quarters, according to analysts, who expect Tilray's losses to narrow slightly over the next three quarters on growing revenue, according to Bloomberg's consensus.

They forecast adjusted losses of $0.24 a share, $0.20 a share, and $0.17 a share in the second, third and fourth quarters, respectively. They also expect revenue to jump to $73 million in the fourth quarter.

Wall Street is broadly neutral on the company.  Of the analysts polled by Bloomberg, six recommend "hold," three suggest "buy," and three say "sell."

Read more coverage from Markets Insider and Business Insider:

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You can no longer buy a $35,000 Tesla Model 3 — the price just went up (TSLA)

Tue, 05/14/2019 - 3:58pm  |  Clusterstock

  • Tesla has raised the price of its least-expensive Model 3 sedan from $35,000 to $35,400, the company confirmed to CNN on Tuesday.
  • The $400 price increase is relatively small, but Tesla has previously touted the Model 3's $35,000 starting price as the fulfillment of a longterm goal to use the proceeds from high-end electric cars to fund the development of affordable models.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Tesla has raised the price of its least-expensive Model 3 sedan from $35,000 to $35,400, CNN reported.

The electric-car maker did not immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment about the change.

While the reported price increase is relatively small, Tesla had touted the Model 3's $35,000 entry-level price before it started taking reservations for the vehicle, which the company framed as the fulfillment of a longterm goal to use the proceeds from high-end electric cars to fund the development of affordable models.

Read more: Tesla reached a $13 million settlement with a former contract worker who was left permanently disabled after being struck by a Model S while on the job

Tesla began delivering high-end versions of the Model 3 in July 2017 but struggled to hit production targets for the next year amid excessive automation at its Fremont, California, assembly plant. As the company smoothed out its production process, CEO Elon Musk said it needed more time to make the $35,000 Model 3 profitably.

In February, the company began allowing customers to order the $35,000 Model 3, known as the standard-range trim, but less than two months later it removed the standard-range trim from its online-order page, saying customers could order it only by phone or in one of the company's stores.

Tesla said demand for the standard-range trim was much lower than that for the standard-range-plus trim, which starts at $39,900, and said removing the standard-range trim from the online menu would increase efficiency and lower costs. The company also said standard-range customers would receive standard-range-plus Model 3s with software that would reduce their range and restrict some capabilities.

Have you worked for Tesla? Do you have a story to share? Contact this reporter at mmatousek@businessinsider.com.

SEE ALSO: Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said Elon Musk won't be able to hit his goal of putting Tesla robotaxis on the road next year

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Here's what you need to know about Fastly, the fast-growing unicorn startup that could go public this week at a valuation of $1.45 billion

Tue, 05/14/2019 - 3:56pm  |  Clusterstock

  • Fastly, a startup that helps websites run faster, is set to go public this week on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "FSLY."
  • If Fastly prices at the high end of its $14 to $16 range, the IPO could value the company at $1.45 billion.
  • It's much lower than Uber's $75.5 billion market cap at the time of its IPO, but don't let that fool you — Fastly has more in common with this year's crop of successful enterprise tech IPOs, like PagerDuty and Zoom, than it does with any car-ride company.
  • Read more on the Business Insider homepage.

Fastly, a startup which helps websites apps run faster, is expected to start trading Thursday on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "FSLY" in an initial public offering that could value the company as high as $1.45 billion. 

It's a small valuation in today's IPO landscape, which just saw Uber go public at a valuation of $75.5 billion — an ultra-high price has since deflated considerably on the public markets in the days since its debut. 

But Fastly represents a different type of unicorn tech startup than Uber. It's a developer-focused company with a smaller valuation — one of a handful of IPO-ready startups in the space which could fill the coffers of bankers and investors alike once all of the headliners like Uber and Slack have come and gone.

The IPO is led by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, and Credit Suisse.

Here's what you need to know about Fastly.

It's more like PagerDuty than Uber

Fastly sells security and content delivery services to other large companies like the New York Times and Spotify, as well as Alaska Airlines and Microsoft's GitHub.

Unlike Oracle or other legacy tech giants, which historically locked customers into contracts, or cloud subscription services like Salesforce, which make money on recurring monthly subscriptions, Fastly charges customers by how much they use its product. Indeed, most of its customers don't have long-term contractual financial commitments to the company, according to its S-1 IPO filing.

Read more: Investors have seen triple-digit returns on some 2019 IPOs, but UBS think there are 2 key reasons it could cool by midsummer

Like the IT management company PagerDuty, which went public in April with a $1.76 billion valuation, or Zoom, which went public around the same time at a valuation of $9.2 billion, Fastly operates at a smaller scale, compared to some of the other 2019 IPOs.

At the end of March, Fastly had 489 employees headquartered out of San Francisco. Its customer base is also relatively slim. Fastly said that as of December 2018, 84% of its revenue is derived from 227 enterprise-sized customers. Its average enterprise customer accounted for $530,000 in revenue. 

Its revenue is growing, but it's not profitable

In terms of fundamentals, Fastly is growing quickly. The company generated $144.6 million in revenue in calendar 2018, up 37.8% from its $105 million in revenue in 2017.

Like other companies in its unicorn startup cohort, however, it's still losing money. Fastly lost $30.9 million in the 2018 calendar year, down 4.7% from $32.5 million in losses in 2017.

The company was last valued at $925 million in 2018, according to PitchBook, after raising $40 million from Deutsche Telekom Capital Partners, Sozo Ventures, and Swisscom Ventures. Altogether the company has raised $220 million. Its most high-profile investors include Battery Ventures and ICONIQ Capital.

In its S-1, Fastly set a price range of $14 to $16 per share, which would give it an initial market cap of $1.45 billion if it prices at the high point — a significant uptick from that last private valuation. 

Read more: One of PagerDuty's earliest investors shares why he went big on the IT-management company before it reached $1.76 billion

While Uber raised $8.1 billion in its IPO, Fastly is looking to raise just $180 million. That's about the size of an extra-large venture capital round, considering that a $100 million round usually corresponds to a $1 billion valuation.

New shareholders won't have much power

Fastly was founded by CEO Artur Bergman in 2011, long after the incumbent Akamai started in 1998 and its more direct rival Cloudflare was founded in 2009.

The company will IPO with a dual class share structure which favors early investors and employees, similarly to the structures seen at Lyft and Pinterest. This gives the current leadership team near-complete control on the board level, leaving shareholders with a financial stake but little say over the future of the company. 

One of the largest shareholders is Bergman, who owns 15.5% of the company. Investor August Capital owns 20.2% of Fastly, Iconiq owns 12.8%, O'Reilly AlphaTech Ventures owns 10.7% and Amplify Partners owns 10.6%.

Each of the parties mentioned above will retain about the same percentage of voting control once the company goes public since their Class B stock holds 10 votes for every one vote held by the Class A stock being sold in the IPO. In sum, Fastly's current shareholders will retain 98.6% of the overall voting power at the company after it goes public.

SEE ALSO: Here's what you need to know about Jumia, the Alibaba of Africa that's getting ready to IPO on the New York Stock Exchange

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NOW WATCH: Tesla has a mini Model S for kids that costs $600, and this family bought it to teach their child about driving electric

Apple, Microsoft, and Google are all releasing fixes for ZombieLoad, a scary security flaw in Intel chips that researchers just discovered (INTC)

Tue, 05/14/2019 - 3:38pm  |  Clusterstock

  • Researchers that found the last huge Intel security hole have found a new one.
  • This time, however, Intel and the rest of the industry were ready with patches.
  • The hole impacts just about every PC and server that uses any kind of Intel processor.
  • It lets hackers potentially see your web history, your passwords and the your disk encryption keys.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The same researchers that found the Intel Spectre and Meltdown flaws which sent Intel and the whole tech industry reeling has found another problem with Intel chips. And they say this vulnerability, named ZombieLoad, impacts PCs and servers of all flavors if they run Intel chips.

The good news is that the researchers have already reported it to Intel and other vendors, and security patches are being issued now.

Intel has already patched several of its current processors, and it released microcode that will patch others, it tells Business Insider. Among the Intel chips that are vulnerable are the Xeon, Broadwell, Sandy Bridge, Skylake, Haswell chips, Kaby Lake, Coffee Lake, Whiskey Lake, Cascade Lake, Atom and Knights processors, the company reported. 

Intel has given this vulnerability a security rating of "medium." PC makers Apple and Microsoft have also issued patches. As have browser makers Google and Mozilla.

While all of this sounds like a yawn — just another hole that vendors are patching — it is creating hubbub because it is another example of an entirely new type of security hole that impacts modern processors. It follows the discovery of the so-called Meltdown, Spectre, and Foreshadow holes in processors, which came to light last year.

And there are a lot of vulnerable Intel processors out there in the world that need to be patched. However, chips that have already been patched from the Spectre hole are less vulnerable to ZombieLoad, Intel says.

ZombieLoad is eye-popping because it allows hackers to see things like browser history, website content, user keys, and passwords, or system-level secrets, such as disk encryption keys. In other words, it may give hackers the literal keys to the secrets locked away through encryption on your computer.  And it can be used on PCs and servers, even those in the cloud, although the big cloud vendors like Microsoft and Google have been given warnings to patch before the researcher went public with this hole.

An Intel spokesperson explains that the company is already well aware of this new security hole, which has the technical name of Microarchitectural Data Sampling (MDS):

"Microarchitectural Data Sampling (MDS) is already addressed at the hardware level in many of our recent 8th and 9th Generation Intel Core processors, as well as the 2nd Generation Intel Xeon Scalable Processor Family. For other affected products, mitigation is available through microcode updates, coupled with corresponding updates to operating system and hypervisor software that are available starting today.

We've provided more information on our website and continue to encourage everyone to keep their systems up to date, as its one of the best ways to stay protected. We'd like to extend our thanks to the researchers who worked with us and our industry partners for their contributions to the coordinated disclosure of these issues."

Zombieload was discovered and reported by security researchers Michael Schwarz, Moritz Lipp, Daniel Gruss (of the Graz University of Technology) and Jo Van Bulck (of the computer science research group at KU Leuven university.)

These guys are becoming so famous in the security worlds that with this new hole, they've become a Twitter internet meme.

SEE ALSO: Explainer: How chip flaws Spectre, Meltdown work and what's next

Join the conversation about this story »

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Markets Live: Tuesday, 14th May 2019

Tue, 05/14/2019 - 6:05am  |  FT Alphaville

Live markets commentary from FT.com

Continue reading: Markets Live: Tuesday, 14th May 2019

Multi-crop threshers manufacturer - SayeTech #Ghana

Tue, 05/14/2019 - 6:00am  |  Timbuktu Chronicles
Over at Innovation Village:
SayeTech Multi-crop Thresher (Kumasi, Ghana) produces multi-crop threshers that help reduce grain waste. The company claims its multi-crop thresher can reduce post-harvest losses by up to 30%, while also increasing income of smallholder farmers by up to 50% every year.

Markets Live: Monday, 13th May 2019

Mon, 05/13/2019 - 6:03am  |  FT Alphaville

Live markets commentary from FT.com

Continue reading: Markets Live: Monday, 13th May 2019

MaziwaPlus Pre-Chiller for Dairy Products in #Kenya

Mon, 05/13/2019 - 6:00am  |  Timbuktu Chronicles
via Innovation-Village:
Savanna Circuit Tech’s MaziwaPlus Pre-Chiller (Kapenguria, Kenya) is a mobile solar-powered chilling in-transit system that can be mounted on motorbikes, offering quality control, traceability, and maximised profits for dairy producers and co-operatives. The solution was developed in response to milk post-harvest losses due to transportation over great distances in rural Kenya.

It's time for Tesla to go into stealth mode for the rest of 2019 (TSLA)

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 2:12pm  |  Clusterstock


In the startup world, when a company is fresh and new and modestly funded, it will typically spend a few years under the radar, trying to develop a viable product or service. When it's time to take that business to market, the startup exits "stealth" mode and reveals what it's been up to.

Stealth mode can obviously be a stressful time, but it can also be a pleasant episode in which the startup has that most desirable of commodities: time. More importantly, that time is free of external judgments. Hope literally springs eternal, and no battles are being fought. 

The money eventually runs out and stealth mode is no longer practical. The business has to stand on its own.

There are periods, however, when a retreat to stealth mode might be warranted. Tesla now finds itself in one of those periods.

Read more: Elon Musk is grimacing all the way to the bank as Tesla finally raises more money

The company is coming off a tortured 2018 — CEO Elon Musk struggled to launch the Model 3, failed to take Tesla private, and was punished by the SEC. There was more, but those were the biggies. On the plus side, the second half of last year saw two consecutive quarters of profit for the first time in Tesla's history; and the carmaker delivered 250,000 vehicles in 2018, a record.

By contrast, 2019 is off to a rotten start. Tesla returned to its money-losing ways in Q1, and it revenues backed up substantially, down $3 billion from over $7 billion in Q4 of 2018. The writing has been on the wall for a new capital raise for some time, and last week, Tesla pulled the trigger, bringing in $2.7 billion (the offering was a mix of convertible debt and equity). 

Tesla has two choices for 2019

This should take much of the pressure off 2019 and give Tesla a window to put its head down and simply execute. Short-sellers should be happy that they can borrow more stock to bet against the company, but their more extreme representatives have also witnessed their "go to zero" arguments undermined by Tesla's improved balance sheet.

Two things could now happen. First, Tesla could seriously engage with what Musk now appears to believe is the Next Big Thing, a robotaxi service. This has been percolating for a while. About three years ago, Musk realized that self-driving was the hot new idea in transportation, displacing the electric-car revolution that had enabled Tesla's rise. He pivoted and pivoted fast. At an investor event a few weeks ago, we saw the fruits of that effort: some rather compelling Tesla-centric autonomous tech.

Musk told Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas that autonomy was going to gobble up all Tesla's adventurous spending, so it's safe to assume that much of the new capital could head in that direction.

But there's a second possibility: become a functional carmaker.

Tesla has always been a dysfunctional carmaker. That was okay because being a functional carmaker in 2010 would have spelled Tesla's doom. It needed to buck the auto industry to attract enough customers to take a crazy chance on an electric car. 

But it's now time for Tesla to put aside those childish games. That's because Tesla dominates the electric-car market. That domination, however, is still pretty small-time, as the EV market is rinkydink. It's critical that Tesla grows its domination as that market expands. 

Why? Because the cost structure of attacking the EV market for a newer entrant from the traditional industry isn't daunting. Automakers are raking in so much money selling pickups, SUVs, and luxury vehicles now that they can afford to throw money at the "problem" of electrification. 

But for Tesla, the cost structure is totalizing. The company doesn't really have another business. It sell EVs or bust. Given its financial vulnerabilities, Tesla needs most of the profits in EVs to flow to its balance sheet. That's the only way it will survive. And the price of that survival is functional execution. Incredibly boring, functional execution.

A crazy dream for Tesla

My dream is that Tesla will wisely take its new $2.7 billion and say, "Thanks very much, now we're going underground for a while so we can figure out how to make money more consistently by building and selling cars."

Based on Musk's comments about autonomy, that isn't going to take place. So I'd be happy with the same statement, just aimed at rolling out a functional self-driving service in the next few years. Regardless, stealth mode would be dandy prerequisite for either decision.

Musk has a tough time controlling his tongue, so I'm not optimistic. BUT, stealth Tesla isn't unprecedented.

Take the robotaxi tech. I've spent a few weeks digging into it, and it's actually incredibly impressive. In a nutshell, Tesla has developed a massive multiplayer online game, overlapping reality with a sort of real-time simulation and using its large fleet of vehicles (equipped with cameras and sensors) as the players. In simple terms, the robotaxi tech creates an AI simulation that the fleet can use, then imposes it on reality and merges the two environments. Basically, it's "The Matrix Reloaded," when Neo combines the actual and virtual worlds of the film.

Tesla hadn't uttered a peep about this prior to the recent investor presentation; the only intel provided by the company was to offer updates on full-self-driving hardware and updates to Autopilot, Tesla's existing semi-self-driving system. Tesla designed its own chip for the robotaxi plan (after using Nvidia's state-of-the-art chips prior), and if any other company had come out of stealth mode having pulled this off while also selling a quarter of a million vehicles, it would have been a staggering entry into the self-driving business.

The upshot is that Tesla can do stealth. It now has a bit of what we might call "eff-you" money. My recommendation is to take the cash and shut up for the rest of the year.

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NOW WATCH: Tesla unveiled its Model Y — here are the best features of the $39,000 SUV

Wall Street's tech transformation, Amazon vs Roku, and a Silicon Valley healthcare startup in hot water

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 11:54am  |  Clusterstock

Hello!

Wall Street firms are looking to Silicon Valley for inspiration.

As we've previously reported, Goldman Sachs is exploring a service that's like Netflix but for data. And JPMorgan chief executive Jamie Dimon has mentioned Amazon Prime as a model for its banking efforts.

But it doesn't stop there. From trillion dollar investment giants BlackRock and Pimco focusing on data science to Citigroup looking to supercharge its technology via an innovation lab, just about every firm in finance is getting in on the act. 

As we reported this week: 

What did we miss? Let me know. You can reach me at mturner@businessinsider.com if you have any questions, ideas, or requests.

—Matt

Quote of the week

"I've heard stories of other guys literally taking a couple hundred thousand dollars, walking into the dealership, buying a Porsche, and then taking the money, throwing it in a bag and going to Vegas." —Evan Rothstein, who manages wealth for more than 20 professional athletes, on the biggest money mistakes pro athletes make.

In conversation

 

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TPG has made big money off of technology bets on companies like Uber, Airbnb, Spotify, and Box. Now, it's raised a new fund to profit from private companies in a different way from its traditional private-equity roots.

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Tech, Media, Telecoms

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Amazon wants to take on OTT heavyweights like Roku for advertising dollars. Here's the pitch deck it's using to sell marketers video ads.

Amazon is on a crusade to build a video advertising business that rivals Roku, Hulu, and others.

Healthcare, Retail, Transportation

Silicon Valley startup uBiome raised $105 million on the promise of exploring a 'forgotten organ.' After an FBI raid, ex-employees say it cut corners in its quest for growth.

The Silicon Valley healthcare startup uBiome is in hot water over its reportedly questionable billing practices, but insiders say problems at the company extend beyond issues tied to insurance claims.

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Church's Chicken is ready for a comeback.

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'Avengers: Endgame' powers past 'Detective Pikachu' to win the weekend box office, and is now the 3rd highest-grossing movie ever domestically

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 11:43am  |  Clusterstock

  • "Avengers: Endgame" won the domestic weekend box office for a third-straight weekend with a $63.1 million take.
  • It fought off Warner Bros.' new release, "Pokémon: Detective Pikachu, which brought in $58 million, the fourth-best domestic opening of the year.
  • The domestic total for "Endgame" is now at $724 million, the third-highest ever.
  • Worldwide, the movie is still number two all-time with $2.486 billion, around $300 million off the all-time leader "Avatar" ($2.788 billion).
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Disney's "Avengers: Endgame" had enough fight to win its first big battle at the domestic box office.

Now in its third weekend in theaters, the Marvel superheroes came up against its first worthy opponent in Warner Bros.' "Pokémon: Detective Pikachu" this weekend. But "Endgame" was able to keep the top spot at the box office for a third-straight weekend, taking in $63.1 million to the healthy $58 million brought in by the Ryan Reynolds-voiced Pokémon character.

The Disney win comes despite "Pikachu" winning the Friday box office, taking in $20.7 million (including $5.7 million in Thursday previews), while "Endgame" took in $16 million. But the fandom for the MCU was still strong, as the movie took in $27.4 million on Saturday, passing "Pikachu," which earned $$20.5 million on the day.

The "Endgame" third weekend figures are lower than what box office analysts predicted for the movie (predictions were around a $70 million weekend), but it earned enough to not just edge out a character from the popular Pokémon IP but become the third-highest domestic-grossing movie ever with a cume of $724 million (passing "Black Panther" with $700 million).

In any other instance,"Pikachu" would have easily made Warner Bros. the big weekend winner. Though "Endgame" took the thunder of the studio's launch of live-action Pokémon movies, "Detective Pikachu" still performed strong with a $14,000 per-screen average and the fourth-best domestic opening of the year (knocking off the $55 million opening for "How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World").

Read more: The 10 best Pokémon games of all time, according to critics

The worldwide gross for "Endgame" is now $2.486 billion, just around $300 million off matching "Avatar" for the all-time record ($2.788 billion). But what "Endgame" can take in at the multiplex going forward will only get tougher. Next weekend Keanu Reeves shows up with "John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum," and the following weekend Disney returns to theaters with the live-action "Aladdin."

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NOW WATCH: 14 details in 'Game of Thrones' season 8 episode 4 you may have missed

I've been fine-tuning my money for over 10 years, and I've finally settled on the 3 best free apps to help me build wealth

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 10:30am  |  Clusterstock

Personal Finance Insider writes about products, strategies, and tips to help you make smart decisions with your money. We may receive a small commission from our partners, but our reporting and recommendations are always independent and objective.

  • Many companies offer free and paid personal finance tools and apps that you can use to track your money.
  • Eric Rosenberg uses a combination of three free money apps to track and manage all of his personal finances: Mint, Personal Capital, and Credit Karma.
  • With a combination of these tools, he tracks his budget, analyzes his investments, improves his credit, and builds wealth.

When I was a kid, the best tools my parents had to track their finances were paper bank statements, lined spreadsheet paper, and an old 10-key calculator with a printout. Lucky for us, personal finance tools today are leaps and bounds ahead of what we had in the past.

I've been using personal finance web and mobile apps for more than 10 years. Many have come and gone along the way, but a few tools have emerged as the best for a wide range of needs.

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These are the three most important tools I use to manage my own personal finances whether I'm on my laptop or with mobile apps on the go. Best of all, they are all free to use.

Mint is the jack of all trades

Mint is one of the oldest personal finance apps and does more than any other. I have 4,315 days of history in my own account. My own Mint history is made up of 24,333 transactions spread across dozens of accounts. It can track bank accounts, credit cards, loans, and investments. You can also add manual accounts to track cash, real estate, and other assets.

Mint allows you to do a bit of everything when it comes to tracking your money. That includes detailed budgeting, investment analysis, credit score updates, bill tracking, goals, and trends. That is a lot of features!

If you are going to use only one personal finance app, this is the one to pick. It doesn't give the very best investment analysis or credit report analysis, which is why you may want to supplement with the two apps below. But for budgeting and tracking your accounts and transactions, it can't be beaten.

!function(){function e(){var e=document.createElement("script"),n=document.getElementById("myFinance-widget-script"),a=t+"static/widget/myFinance.js";e.type="text/javascript",e.async=!0,e.src=a,n.parentNode.insertBefore(e,n);var c="myFinance-widget-css";if(!document.getElementById(c)){var d=document.getElementsByTagName("head")[0],i=document.createElement("link");i.id=c,i.rel="stylesheet",i.type="text/css",i.href=t+"static/widget/myFinance.css",i.media="all",d.appendChild(i)}}var t="https://www.myfinance.com/";document.attachEvent?document.attachEvent("onreadystatechange",function(){"complete"===document.readyState&&e()}):document.addEventListener("DOMContentLoaded",e,!1)}(); Personal Capital provides added investment analysis

If you want to see the most important details and analysis of your portfolio, the most powerful platform is Personal Capital. Personal Capital is a brokerage that offers investment management services, but you can use its investment analysis software for free even if you don't pay for a Personal Capital investment account.

This free app will track all of your accounts and transactions, but it's budgeting features are pretty weak and it doesn't look at all at your credit. The investment analysis, however, is best in class.

Balances, portfolio performance, and asset allocations are just a few clicks away. It also includes forward-looking tools including a retirement planner, fee analyzer, and investment checkup. I used these tools when I signed up to adjust some funds and save $300 per year in fees. Taking into account the compounding effect and future contributions, that will easily save me tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars over the decades until retirement.

Credit Karma adds detailed credit reporting

Credit scores are complex. Among the many factors that flow into your credit score, it's tough to isolate specific problems and drill into what you can do to improve your credit even if you have a copy of your free credit report in hand. That's where Credit Karma comes in.

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Credit Karma is a free credit score and credit analysis tool that's been around since 2007. After signing up, you'll have access to credit scores and credit reports from TransUnion and Equifax, two of the three major credit bureaus. It includes your latest VantageScore, a popular credit scoring model similar to FICO.

This application shows you how the different parts of your score are weighted and offers custom advice to improve your credit. Credit Karma also has free tax preparation software, a great bonus that can save you from having to pay to file your taxes. But the credit features alone make it worth signing up.

Financial tools are only as effective as you make them

I'm a bit of a money nerd, so I like to see lots of details about my finances. I keep all three of these websites in my bookmarks bar so I can get to them with a single click. Each offers fresh and regularly updated insights into my money. Before them, I had to log into a bunch of different websites to see everything and didn't have any of the advice or analysis at all.

These days, I'm on top of my money with just a few minutes per week thanks to the useful dashboards at Mint, Personal Capital, and Credit Karma. I can always dig in for more details when I want as well. After a lot of testing, this is the best money system for me.

How much could your savings grow over time? Find out with this calculator from our partners:

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by Goldman Sachs.  Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by Goldman Sachs.

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A CEO who manages a $1 billion firm teaches her teen daughter 3 core lessons about investing

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 9:15am  |  Clusterstock

  • Renee Kwok is a certified financial planner and the CEO of TFC Financial in Boston, a $1 billion financial planning and asset management firm.
  • Kwok says the most important investing advice she shares with her teenage daughter is to keep savings in a high-interest account, invest extra savings in stocks, and contribute to investments regularly.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Moms are chock full of advice, but when Renee Kwok talks to her daughter about money, her words may very well carry twice the weight.

Kwok is a certified financial planner and the CEO of TFC Financial, a $1 billion financial planning and asset management firm based in Boston.

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She tells her daughter to "work hard and save most of your money. The three-bucket philosophy endures today: spend a little, donate some — and save most." But, Kwok says, it's what you do with your savings that matters most.

1. Put your savings in a high-interest account

"You can't collect interest or grow your stacks of cash if they are sitting in an envelope in your desk drawer," Kwok tells her daughter.

A high-yield savings account or money-market account is often the best place to keep savings so it grows, but remains easily accessible. While you won't wreck your financial life by not storing savings in a high-interest account, your money will almost certainly lose value thanks to inflation.

Online savings accounts, as opposed to big bank branches, usually offer the best rates, which can be up to 200 times more than a checking account.

"Even in today's low interest rate environment," Kwok told Business Insider, "getting some interest on your cash in a bank account is better than getting no interest — and you'll never have to worry about your parents accidentally throwing out your 'home' bank account if they decide they need to clean your room."

Want to find a high-yield savings account for your extra cash? Consider these offers from our partners:

2. Invest your extra savings in index funds

When you have enough savings to cover your short-term needs, turn to the stock market, Kwok advises her daughter and other young investors.

"For young people who have their lifetimes, 40 or 50 or 60 years to stay invested in the stock market and ride out the bumps along the way, history shows us that's the smartest move financially," she said.

"Low-cost index mutual funds and ETFs (exchange-traded funds) from companies like Vanguard, BlackRock (iShares), Schwab, and Fidelity are an excellent option for young people investing their first few thousand dollars in the market," Kwok said.

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Index funds
are a type of passive investment that exposes investors to a broad selection of stocks in order to diversify and ultimately minimize risk. They're typically low-cost and even outperform actively managed funds.

3. Contribute to your investments early and regularly

Compound interest shows us that the more money we contribute to our savings and investments, and the earlier we do it, the more they'll grow.

"A dollar you put in a Roth IRA in your teen years in the long run may be worth just as much as $8 or $10 you invest in your 50s or 60s — because that dollar benefits from decades more compounded growth and reinvestment," Kwok said.

And most importantly, Kwok tells her daughter, don't monitor your investments on your phone every day.

Investing experts often give advice along these lines because investments fluctuate from day to day. Watching every dip and valley creates an almost irresistible temptation to interfere and try to compensate for any losses or hustle for more gains — which is a mistake. When you're investing for the long term, you want to leave your money alone and let it grow over time without interference. Over a matter of decades, those daily dips will usually even themselves out.

How much could your savings grow over time? Find out with this calculator from our partners:

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Uber and Lyft drivers reveal the things you should never do while taking a ride (LYFT, UBER)

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 9:15am  |  Clusterstock

  • Uber and Lyft have taken the world by storm.
  • Business Insider has spoken to dozens of drivers to learn more about what it's like to work for the ride-hailing apps.
  • There are a handful of complaints that are nearly universal among drivers. 

Millions of drivers shuttle passengers to their destinations all around the globe on behalf of Uber and Lyft. 

Those drivers meet all sorts of passengers, good and bad. And on the whole, their experiences have been overwhelmingly positive, dozens of drivers have told Business Insider. 

But, as with any public-facing job, there will be some bad apples.

We asked drivers to tell us their biggest pet peeves, which could help your own rider rating by avoiding. Here's what they said (last names have been removed to protect privacy):

SEE ALSO: 15 cities where Uber and Lyft drivers make the most money

Don't eat — or at least ask first

The number one complaint among every driver was on the subject of odors. While you may not mind the smell of fried chicken, the lingering smell could end up causing a future rider to leave a less-than-stellar rating for the driver.

"Entitled riders think they can eat whatever they want in my car," Amanda, a driver in Las Vegas, told Business Insider. "People forget these are our personal vehicles."

Another driver, Matt from Wisconsin, said he didn't mind going through drive-thru windows for passengers if they ask, but on one condition: "I tell them, 'We can absolutely go to Taco Bell or KFC or whatever, but you have to wait to open it until I drop you off.'"



Other smells…

It doesn't stop at food. Other smells can have an even more drastic effect on a driver's ability to keep working. The number one culprit is marijuana.

"Young people get in my car all the time reeking of marijuana," Wallace, a driver in Connecticut, told Business Insider. "I don't mind personally — as long as they aren't smoking in the car — but if another passenger so much as complains about the car smelling like weed, it can get me deactivated from the app."

Stan, a driver in the Cleveland, Ohio area, said he uses a Febreze spray after any rider "with extreme pet or body odor when they exit the vehicle."

"I've been pretty lucky with passengers, but when they get in right after smoking a cigarette it can linger in my car which can then lead to a bad review," Gabriella, a driver in Boulder, said.



Don't ignore your driver

Many passengers want to ride in silence, and probably many of the drivers, too. Still, drivers told Business Insider that contact with riders is one of the few human interactions they might have in a shift, given that they have no boss or office.

"I love to drive, but sometimes when I pick up a customer they don't say hello and just get in and start giving orders," Dorothy, a driver in the New York City suburbs, said.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

The top 15 countries with the most billionaires, ranked

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 9:05am  |  Clusterstock

Fifteen countries dominate in billionaire population and wealth, according to Wealth-X's 2019 Billionaire Census report. The report analyzed data from Wealth-X's global database of more than one million records of the world's richest people.

Three-fourths of the world's billionaire population lives in the 15 countries listed below. Collectively, the 1,942 billionaires in these countries are worth $6.8 trillion — that accounts for 79% of total global billionaire wealth in 2018.

When it comes to billionaire population, the United States dominates with 27% of the world's billionaires. Its total billionaire count rose from 2017 to 2018 by 4% to 705 billionaires. Meanwhile, total billionaire wealth worldwide decreased by 5% to slightly more than $3 trillion.

All the top Asia-Pacific countries — China, Hong Kong, India, and Singapore — saw a decrease in billionaires and billionaire wealth due to a decline in equity markets, according to the report. Meanwhile, major European countries saw both decreases and increases in billionaires, depending on economic factors.

Note that Hong Kong and Singapore also made Wealth-X's list of the top 15 cities with the most billionaires — Hong Kong is a semi-autonomous, special administrative region of China, and Singapore is an island city-state off southern Malaysia.

Take a look at which countries worldwide have the most billionaires, ranked in ascending order.

SEE ALSO: The top 15 cities with the most billionaires, ranked

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15. Singapore saw a drop in billionaires because of negative equity market performance.

Number of billionaires: 39

Total billionaire wealth: $84 billion

Singapore is one of the richest cities in the world: The total private wealth of its residents amounts to $1 trillion, reported Business Insider's Katie Warren. It's also one of the most expensive cities to live in worldwide.



14. Canada's wealthy are getting richer faster than the rest of the population.

Number of billionaires: 45

Total billionaire wealth: $87 billion

Ricardo Tranjan, senior researcher at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA), ​told CBC that "the rich are really sprinting ahead" of average Canadians. According to a CCPA report, the richest families are worth $3 billion on average and own as much wealth as three Canadian provinces combined.



13. Italy saw a decrease in billionaire population due to political instability.

Number of billionaires: 47

Total billionaire wealth: $141 billion

In addition to housing nearly 50 billionaires, Italy is home to many destinations frequented by the super rich, including the Amalfi coast, Portofino, Positano, Capri, Cinque Terre, Milan, and Venice.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Facebook is building out its team of antitrust experts as one of its cofounders calls for it to be broken up (FB)

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 9:00am  |  Clusterstock

  • Facebook is hiring a bevy of new lawyers and policy experts with expertise in competition law.
  • The job openings come as a cofounder of the social network calls for the company to be broken up under antitrust regulation.
  • The company is facing increasing criticism over its size and power, and there are mounting suggestions that regulators should take action.

One of Facebook's cofounders wants to see the company broken up. The social network won't go down without a fight.

On Thursday, Facebook cofounder Chris Hughes made headlines by arguing in an op-ed for The New York Times that the California technology giant had grown too large and powerful, and needed to be reined in under antitrust law.

The company, unsurprisingly, takes a different view, with its global head of comms Nick Clegg saying in a statement that "you don't enforce accountability by calling for the breakup of a successful American company" and arguing alternate regulation should be explored instead.

A review of Facebook's current open job listings shed light on how the company is actively preparing for antitrust action, and is hiring people proactively to build out its legal and policy teams and stave off the threat. 

One key role the company is currently hiring for: A new competition counsel, to be based in Europe and tasked with "[representing] the company in connection with competition inquiries by regulators across the world."

It's seeking someone with four to five years of experience of corporate antitrust enquiries, including "conducting investigations and merger reviews" — seemingly a veiled reference to the growing calls for Facebook's acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp to be reversed — and knowledge of global competition law and language skills.

"Facebook seeks a highly motivated and experienced team player to serve as Competition Counsel to the company ... Working with a talented and supportive team, this position will manage investigations and inquiries related to antitrust matters and help develop the company's legal position and strategy on competition matters throughout the world," the job ad reads.

A new, global threat to Facebook

Facebook is also bulking out its competition law expertise on its policy teams around the world.

In the US, it is recruiting a Public Policy Manager to focus on competition based in Washington DC, who will "assist in the formulation and implementation of the company's global competition public policy strategy." This includes monitoring relevant competition issues, preparing policy position briefing papers, advising teams, and representing Facebook in meetings. 

Meanwhile, in Europe it is seeking a "Director, Economic and Competition Policy, EU Affairs," as well as a Public Policy Manager working on EMEA competition policy. For the former role, Facebook is actively hunting for people with experience in government, who will intimately understand the levers of power and can represent Facebook in meetings with government officials.  For the latter, it is hunting for someone with "expertise" on Europe-specific competition issues.

And in India, Facebook is on the hunt a new Public Policy Manager, who will "lead on issues related to economic regulation development with focus on competition law and trade policies in the region." Other open roles, including public policy manager positions in Japan and Korea, and an associate general counsel for WhatsApp looking at global payments and regulation, also touch on the issue as part of a broader brief. 

The job listings reflect a new reality for Facebook: After years of scandals, it is facing an increasingly hostile regulatory environment, forcing it to invest significantly in its lobbying and legal apparatus to defend itself. 

Got a tip? Contact this reporter via encrypted messaging app Signal at +1 (650) 636-6268 using a non-work phone, email at rprice@businessinsider.com, Telegram or WeChat at robaeprice, or Twitter DM at @robaeprice. (PR pitches by email only, please.) You can also contact Business Insider securely via SecureDrop.

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How 'Apex Legends' and 'Fortnite' are transforming the video game industry

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 7:54am  |  Clusterstock

  • "Apex Legends" and "Fortnite" have tens of millions of players and are transforming the video-game industry.
  • The two free-to-play, 'battle royale' games have boosted their creators, Electronic Arts and Epic Games, as well as retailers and toy makers such as GameStop.
  • They have hurt other video-game publishers such as Activision Blizzard, and pushed some studios to shut down. 
  • Watch EA, GameStop, and Activision-Blizzard trade live.

"Fortnite" and "Apex Legends" have shaken up the video-game industry, boosting their creators as well as retailers and toymakers, but hurting rival publishers and pushing some studios to shut down.

"Fortnite" is the world's most popular game with around 250 million players. It's signature, free-to-play mode drops 100 players on an island for a "battle royale" with only one winner. It generated close to $2.5 billion in revenue from sales of virtual items in 2018, according to Nielsen's SuperData tracking arm. Creator Epic Games netted $3 billion in profit from "Fortnite" and its other games last year, according to Techcrunch.

Electronic Arts' entry in the battle-royale genre, "Apex Legends," was released in February and attracted more than 50 million players in its first month. Nearly 30% of the game's players are new to EA, CEO Andrew Wilson said on the company's fourth-quarter earnings call. The influx of fresh blood fueled a boost in total active players to more than 500 million in the year to March. 

"'Apex Legends' is easily the fastest-growing franchise we've ever had," said COO Blake Jorgensen on the call.

He estimated the game drew between 7.5 million and 15 million players simultaneously — five to 10 times the largest number of users on FIFA at any one time.

It also drove EA's net bookings — net revenue plus any change in deferred revenue —  from live services up 24% to $854 million last quarter. Management predicted "Apex Legends" would generate net bookings of $300 million to $400 million this fiscal year, driving overall live-services net bookings up 10% to 15%.

"Apex looks to have had an oversized impact on the quarter despite its short time on the market," Gerrick Johnson, an analyst at BMO Capital Markets, said in a research note. "Given that 'Apex Legends' is still a relatively new phenomenon, we believe the guidance for this free-to-play game is on the conservative side."

However, Wilson warned the game's daily user count had "come down slightly" since February, and strongly suggested user spending was down. Those trends highlight a major headache with free-to-play games — pushing out enough content and virtual items for sale to keep players engaged and money rolling in.

"The biggest challenge on spend is having enough things that people could spend money on," he said.

Other companies have benefited from the hype around "Apex Legends" and "Fortnite."

GameStop's net sales of accessories surged 22% to $957 million last fiscal year. Customers snapped up headsets and controllers, reflecting the "ongoing popularity of battle-royale-genre games like 'Fortnite' and now 'Apex Legends,'" COO Robert Lloyd said on the video-game retailer's fourth-quarter earnings call. Both games continue to drive sales of accessories and in-game currency in its stores, he added.

Similarly, Turtle Beach CEO Juergen Stark described the "Fortnite effect" on the gaming-accessories group's fourth-quarter earnings call. He argued most of the growth in headset sales in North America between 2017 and 2018 — from about 9 million to 14.7 million, according to Nielsen — was "attributable to the influx of new gamers and new headset users from battle royale games, especially Fortnite."

Moreover, "Apex Legends is "keeping headset users engaged," and its lack of a price tag frees up money for gamers to spend on replacing and upgrading their headsets, Stark added.

It's been a similar story at Logitech, the computer accessories group. Fortnite and PUBG – PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, another battle royale game — were "bringing new gamers into the market and driving upgrades to gaming-dedicated peripherals," CEO Bracken Darrell said on the fourth-quarter earnings call last year

"If you create something that has magnetic appeal...and it's fun to watch, like Fortnite, you have the potential to drive not only the existing players to move over, but even more important, new players to come in and new people to start watching," Darrell added.

"There are new games coming on that look like they're on track to be as big as Fortnite," he said on Logitech's fourth-quarter earnings call this year, suggesting he thinks "Apex Legends" could provide a similar boost to the market.

"Fortnite" obsession has also spread to the toy shelf.

Funko, which makes pop-culture collectibles such as bobbleheads, earned 10% of its revenue from "Fortnite" last quarter, according to its latest earnings call. Meanwhile, Hasbro executives reported "a very strong start" for "Nerf Fortnite" and said "Fortnite: Monopoly" was "performing well" on the toy giant's first-quarter earnings call.

Others are starting to see their "Fortnite" tailwind fade. Plantronics' sales of consumer headsets slowed to about $48 million last quarter — lower than in any of the previous three quarters — as "the Fortnite phenomenon is starting to play out a little bit," CEO Joseph Burton said on the audio-communications group's fourth-quarter earnings call.

The success of "Apex Legends" and "Fortnite" has come at others' expense.

Keywords Studios — which provides testing, localization, and other services to video-game companies — said in its latest annual report that "the competitive effect and loss of player base" from "Fortnite" forced its clients to spend less on supporting their games and terminate games entirely. By vacuuming up too many dollars, the game may also have pressured studios such as Telltale and Starbreeze into closing down, it added.

Activision-Blizzard's franchises — which include "Overwatch," "Call of Duty," and "Warcraft" — suffered "some reach impact from competitors," COO Collister Johnston said on the company's first-quarter earnings call, referring to "Fortnite" and "Apex Legends." Total monthly active users fell by 3% to 345 million, according to the group's earnings report, pushing net bookings down about 9% to below $1.3 billion for the quarter.

However, Johnson spied "real opportunity" for Activision-Blizzard in the combined battle royale and free-to-play space, particularly as the company is ramping up investment in its biggest franchises. A game that throws "Warcraft" or "Overwatch" characters into a battle royale could be around the corner.

"Fortnite" has popularized the battle royale format in video games, fueled demand for everything from gaming headsets to board games, eaten into others' sales, and perhaps even pressured competitors to shut up shop. "Apex Legends" and the inevitable copycats will hope to make a similar mark on the industry.

SEE ALSO: Another huge game series is about to get its own 'Fortnite'-style Battle Royale mode

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One expert says an imminent 65% stock-market crash would be 'run-of-the-mill' — and explains why risks are greater now than during the tech bubble

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 6:05am  |  Clusterstock

  • The stock market was thrown for a loop this past week as President Donald Trump escalated the US-China trade war. But one expert warns the worst is yet to come.
  • John Hussman — the outspoken investor and former professor who's been predicting a stock collapse — explains why an equity-market loss of 60-65% would be in line with history.
  • He also breaks down why the overvaluation he sees in stocks is more threatening to the market's overall health than it was during the dotcom era.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

If you think the past week in the stock market was rough, you ain't seen nothing yet.

That's according to John Hussman, the former economics professor who is now president of the Hussman Investment Trust.

A known permabear, Hussman has long warned of the dormant risks threatening to bubble up to the market's surface. And while equities have yet to receive the walloping he's expected, his cries are getting louder as bearish conditions continue to calcify.

In his most recent monthly blog post, Hussman delivered a new spin on his long-standing bearish view. Not only is he expecting a stock-market crash in the region of 60-65%, but he also argues that such a meltdown would be completely normal by historical standards.

Allow him to explain.

"It's worth remembering that — except for the 2000-2002 bear market, which ended at valuations that were still about 25% above historical norms — every other bear market decline in history, including the 2007-2009 decline, has taken reliable valuation measures to historical norms that presently stand between -60% and -65% below present market levels," Hussman said.

He continued: "Given present valuation extremes, I continue to believe that a rather pedestrian, run-of-the-mill completion of the current market cycle would involve a loss in the S&P 500 of about two-thirds of the market's value."

Read more: Buy Amazon and Google, sell Apple and Exxon: Here's an in-depth look at Goldman Sachs' newly unveiled strategy for fighting the trade war

Hussman says the other way stocks could revert to back to historically normal valuations would be for the S&P 500 to stay unchanged over a long period as corporate fundamentals improved.

This scenario would require no negative market events of any sort. And considering how much turmoil equities saw in just the past week, this would seem to be an unlikely, if not impossible outcome.

"It would take well over two decades, holding the S&P 500 unchanged, for valuations to reach historically run-of-the-mill levels on the basis of growth in fundamentals alone," Hussman said.

He continued: "Sustaining that kind of 'permanently high plateau' would require the absence of even a single episode of severe risk-aversion among investors during that time frame."

Another major red flag noted by Hussman is the nature of the stock market's overvaluation. It's well-known at this point that, by his favored measures, equities look the most expensive in history. This is borne out in the chart below, which is one of his favorites:

But Hussman isn't content to stop there. He says "extreme" valuations such as those seen today are even more dangerous than another modern instance: the tech bubble.

Read more: An investment chief overseeing $100 billion at Pimco says beware of the 'riskiest corporate market we've ever had' — and offers these strategies for surviving the next recession

Hussman notes that, back then, the S&P 500's eye-watering level was driven almost entirely by tech stocks. Nowadays, however, he finds that every single decile in the benchmark is "sufficiently overvalued to allow market losses on the order of -59% to -71%, without even breaching their respective valuation norms."

Put in simpler terms: The whole dang market is historically expensive right now, not just a cross-section of overhyped stocks.

So there you have it. Hussman is staunchly refusing to give up his bearish stance. He does, however, acknowledge that investor speculation can be an uncontrollable runaway train of sorts — something that can defy market signals for uncomfortably long, frustrating bulls like him. That's why he's adopting a neutral stance for the time being.

Hussman's track record

For the uninitiated, Hussman has repeatedly made headlines by predicting a stock-market decline exceeding 60% and forecasting a full decade of negative equity returns. And as the stock market has continued to grind mostly higher, he's persisted with his calls, undeterred.

But before you dismiss Hussman as a wonky permabear, consider his track record, which he breaks down in his latest blog post. Here are the arguments he lays out:

  • Predicted in March 2000 that tech stocks would plunge 83%, then the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 index lost an "improbably precise" 83% during a period from 2000 to 2002
  • Predicted in 2000 that the S&P 500 would likely see negative total returns over the following decade, which it did
  • Predicted in April 2007 that the S&P 500 could lose 40%, then it lost 55% in the subsequent collapse from 2007 to 2009

In the end, the more evidence Hussman unearths around the stock market's unsustainable conditions, the more worried investors should get. Sure, there may still be returns to be realized in this market cycle, but at what point does the mounting risk of a crash become too unbearable?

That's a question investors will have to answer themselves. And it's one Hussman will clearly keep exploring in the interim.

SEE ALSO: This under-the-radar trade can help you beat the market as tariff tensions flare — even if stocks are getting crushed

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