A perfect potential Pizza Hut patron

January 8, 2019
Dow Jones: 23,531 (+0.42%)
S&P 500: 2,550 (+0.70%)
Nasdaq: 6,823 (+1.26%)
Bitcoin: $3,962 (-1.49%)
10-Year Treasury: 2.691%

You're living in the "post-text future." That's a new thing. And Mastercard is apparently really into it (its new logo is speechless).

The rest of the market edged up as US Trade War negotiators head over to Beijing to figure things out.

1. Pizza Hut's biggest strategic move yet: Beer

Toss some carbs on our carbs... Cheesy Bites pioneer Pizza Hut is aggressively growing its beer delivery plans to 300 locations next week and 1,000 by this summer. Pizza Hut's owned by Yum Brands (along with KFC and Taco Bell) and it's now the only national pizza chain pumping out pale ales.

Shocker: Pizza people enjoy beer too... Pizza Hut piloted its beer delivery program last year. Then (surprise) it got "positive feedback." A growing number of customers even ordered pizzas for the sole purpose of receiving a Corona 6-pack delivered. FYI, Blue Moon pairs nicely with sausage/pepperoni. 

The Takeaway: Alcohol's a really good distraction... Pizza Hut couldn't keep up with Domino's technology, which delivers by drone, robot, and reindeer. So instead of fighting the tech fight, Pizza Hut's making up for inferior delivery & convenience with beer. Well-timed before the Super Bowl.

2. Amazon hits #1 with home security features

At least 2 zip drives worth of press releases… were just pumped out by Amazon. The “Ring” is partnering up with “Key” to digitally deadbolt your physical life. It’s a statement that Amazon takes home security seriously, and explains how it just became the #1 richest public company.

It’s tech porn for homeowners… Amazon’s new features are about to get bragged about by your most proud home-owning buddy with disposable income:

  • Key by Amazon makes your gangly physical keychain obsolete. The app unlocks doors, including a new deadbolt by Schlage. Key for Garage and Key for Business are the new self-explanatory versions announced yesterday 
  • Ring was acquired by Amazon last year -- It shows who’s at the door with its app-connected camera. And with Key, Ring now lets you welcome who’s at the door inside by unlocking it remotely (you're welcome, dog walkers).

The Takeaway: Amazon's #1 for the 1st time... We’re talking "market capitalization." That’s the total value of all the shares a company has issued. Amazon’s 4% jump Monday put it ahead of Microsoft, and it’s shockingly way above Apple, whose 21-quarter-long reign of most valuable company ended in December. Here's the leaderboard:
  1. Amazon: $796B
  2. Microsoft: $783B
  3. Alphabet: $745B
  4. Apple: $701B

3. Samsung's really weird big day

Already heard Cher's angelic concert voice?... Hit up the Consumer Electronics Show instead -- CES is the Las Vegas right-after-New-Year's tech convention, and Samsung was the early highlight. Its first presentation was a lot of over-teched-out home stuff that you'll probably never use:

  • A fridge that alerts your phone if it's left open
  • A robot that checks your blood pressure
  • A washing machine that recommends cycles by analyzing how much dirt's on your khakis

What about the surprise hookup?... Glad you asked. Samsung's new smart TVs will feature its rival's app: iTunes. The South Korean firm is the first to let users to watch movies and TV shows they purchased through Apple. For Apple users who want a TV, they might go with arch-smartphone-rival Samsung.

The Takeaway: Apple's swallowing its AppleTV pride... It's a big deal because Apple's always wanted/forced you to splurge for a sleek AppleTV console at a cool $149-$199. Until now iTunes couldn't be downloaded on other smart TVs like Roku, Amazon Prime, or Netflix could. Apple's stubbornness put it behind in streaming TV. This is a desperate catch-up plan.

What else we're 'Snacking

  • Cord-Cutting: Roku surges 25% as streaming surges
  • Jacked: ClassPass buys creatively-named Asian competition GuavaPass
  • Distracted: Disney and Audi just teamed up for backseat virtual reality
  • Venture: Softbank was supposed to invest $16B in WeWork. It cancelled that.
  • Hedged: Bridgewater is Earth's biggest hedge fund -- and it earned a 14% return last quarter (the average hedge fund lost 7%)

'SnackFact of the Day

The median incomes of American authors (full-time and part-time) was $6,080 in 2017 -- That's an historic low and 42% lower than in 2009

Submitted by Paul Treanor (Whittier, CA)
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  • Consumer Electronics Show (CES) keeps rolling in Vegas
  • US negotiators hit up Beijing to talk Trade War

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