Posts belonging to Category UBER economy

Hyundai, Kia deny Apple car talks

Shares are tumbling

South Korean automaker Hyundai and its affiliate Kia on Monday denied news reports they were in talks with Apple for a joint project to make autonomous vehicles, sending their shares tumbling. The announcement came about a month after the country’s cable broadcaster Korea Economic TV said the iPhone maker had approached Hyundai to discuss a potential partnership to develop electric vehicles and batteries for them, sending the car maker’s shares soaring. Reports last week suggested they could produce cars in the US state of Georgia.

But on Monday Hyundai and Kia said in regulatory filings they were “not discussing autonomous electric car development with Apple”. Both automakers added that they had talked with multiple firms about such projects, but no decision had been made. Hyundai said those talks were in their “early stages”. Kia shares slumped 14.98 percent at the close in Seoul on Monday, while Hyundai fell 6.21 percent.

Uber and Lyft drivers to remain independent contractors

California voters approve Prop. 22

Californians sided with the $200-million Proposition 22 campaign led by Uber and Lyft, voting to pass the measure and grant ride-hail and delivery companies an exemption from California employment law to continue treating workers as independent contractors.

The fight was one of the most closely watched ballot measure contests in the country and the costliest in state history. A win for the app-based companies has the potential to create a new campaign paradigm, with companies sidestepping government and spending large sums of money to sway voters with traditional advertisements and more unconventional direct marketing to customers. The measure’s passage also deals a blow to California’s powerful labor unions, underdogs in the race with far fewer financial resources than their foes.


Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) is predicted to be the next trillion-dollar company

There’s still a way to play the EV boom 

Over 3,000 investors with over $110 trillion in assets under management can’t be wrong … That $110 trillion supports “responsible investment”, or ESG investing for a more sustainable future. Some of that $110 trillion dollars is now squarely focused on the electric vehicle (EV) industry. And Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) is predicted to be the next trillion-dollar company, with stocks soaring more than 300% this year thanks to record demand, record deliveries and even record-breaking revenues and profits.

Investors in EV delivery and utilities darling Workhouse Group (NASDAQ:WKHS) have seen 700% gainsChinese EV hot shot Nio (NYSE:NIO) is up nearly 950%Plug Power (NASDAQ:PLUG)–an EV tie-in that is producing hydrogen fuel cell systems–has witnessed a gain of over 530% this year alone. These gains have been remarkable.

Lyft Says Rides Are Slowly Rebounding

Up to 73% In Some Cities

Lyft said some cities were starting to see significant rebounds following the coronavirus’ decimation of ride-hailing requests. Overall, US rides were up 26% in May compared to April, with some cities like Austin, Texas up as much as 73%. Shares of Lyft rose about 4% in after-hours trading as investors welcomed the rebound.
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After near total decimation because of the coronavirus pandemic, Lyft said Tuesday that ride requests were starting to pick up again. Overall, rides were up 26% in the United States in May compared to April, but are still down 70% from the same period of last year, Lyft said in a regulatory filing.

Some cities, however, are seeing much larger upticks as parts of the country relax shelter-in-place orders sooner than others. Austin, for example, saw a 73% increase, while Miami was up 64%, Las Vegas up 59%, and Denver up 54%.

Airbnb cuts 25% of staff amid travel downturn

Viability of Norwegian Cruise as a company is uncertain

Online booking platform Airbnb is planning to cut 25% of its staff as it grapples with plunging travel due to the pandemic. The firm is bracing for revenues to drop by half or worse this year. Boss Brian Chesky said it’s not clear when travel will return or what it will look like when it does.”While we know Airbnb’s business will fully recover, the changes it will undergo are not temporary or short-lived” he said. The move at Airbnb is the latest sign the travel industry is preparing for a prolonged downturn.

Norwegian Cruise Lines warned investors on Tuesday its viability as a company was uncertain, while Virgin Atlantic said it would cut 3,000 workers and quit Gatwick airport.

Airbnb’s planned cuts will affect about 1,900 people out of the company’s 7,500 staff.

Uber promises ‘profit’ milestone this year

Will Uber become profitable soon?

Uber has big plans for the end of 2020: It hopes to finally become profitable. Kind of.

The ride-hailing service announced plans to cut spending and improve profit margins in its taxi and food delivery businesses. As a result, executives expect the company to be profitable, excluding a number major expenses, a year earlier than its previous goal.

This comes from a company that, using conventional accounting, lost $1.1 billion during the fourth quarter, a jump from the $887 million it had lost during the same period a year earlier. For the entire year, by that same measure, it lost an astounding $8.5 billion.

90% of Tesla’s Model 3 owners feel safer using autopilot

Tesla currently offers two packages of Autopilot features

5,000 Model 3 owners were asked  about Tesla’s software for automated driving on highways and parking lots. More than 90% said the feature makes them safer.It seemed, for a terrifying moment, that Tesla’s automated-driving software had made an error at highway speeds. A driver from Florida reported an experience of inexplicable braking by the Autopilot feature on his Model 3. An instant later, the vehicle ahead swerved out of the lane to reveal a stopped car. Tesla’s sensors had detected the upcoming hazard and acted without human input to avert a crash.

A Model 3 driver from Alabama had a very different experience. He was cruising along the highway with a state trooper following directly behind. There was nothing obstructing the road ahead, but finicky Autopilot sensors triggered the brakes. Only human reflexes prevented a rear-end encounter with a cop, after the Model 3 driver jammed his foot on the accelerator to override Autopilot.

Uber, Lyft economic model at stake

Workplace protection to a million Californians

A measure to curb the widespread use of independent contractors across the California economy moved closer to final passage in the Legislature on Friday even as Uber, Lyft and other gig economy companies mounted a fierce lobbying campaign to sidestep its reach.

The landmark legislation, which could set a precedent in a national battle to improve pay and benefits for low- and middle-wage workers, would change the employment status of more than a million Californians.

Janitors cleaning downtown office buildings, truckers loading goods at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, construction workers building new homes, manicurists, medical technicians,nightclub strippers and even software coders would be among scores of occupations offered protection against long-documented workplace abuses.

Uber falls to all-time low

Investors grow more skeptical

Shares of Uber continued to sink on Monday, posting their lowest close ever, after the company reported disappointing second-quarter results last week.

The stock dropped 7.6% to $37.00, falling below its previous low of $37.10 on May 13. Since its debut on the public markets in May, Uber shares have shed about 18% of their value from the company’s IPO price of $45 per share.

Uber posted a staggering $5.2 billion loss in its latest quarterly results, driven primarily by stock-based compensation costs. The company reported a per-share loss of $4.72 on revenue of $3.17 billion, both of which missed analysts’ estimates.

2020 Democratic candidates and the universal basic income

How to help workers impacted by job automation ?

Whether they call it a Freedom Dividend or a baby bond, some 2020 Democratic contenders have embraced the tenets of a universal basic income (UBI). Proponents of UBI — including Tesla TSLA, -1.38%   CEO Elon Musk and Facebook FB, -1.21%  CEO Mark Zuckerberg — argue that it would help workers impacted by job automation and provide Americans with a safety net.

About 36 million Americans — or 25% of U.S. jobs — have “high exposure to automation” over the next few decades, according to a Brookings Institute analysis published in January, with more than 70% of their tasks “at risk of substitution.” Jobs in food preparation, office administration, transportation and production are at greatest risk for automation, the report said.

But the concept of guaranteed income didn’t originate with 2020 Democrats — in fact, figures as varied as Martin Luther King, Jr., former President Richard Nixon and economist Milton Friedman have all backed versions of such a policy.

EU opens road to 5G connected cars

BMW and Qualcomm are the winners

European Union states opened the way to competing technologies for internet connected cars on Thursday, rejecting a European Commission push for a wifi-based standard backed by Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE). The result represents a win for BMW (BMWG.DE) and Qualcomm (QCOM.O) which support a rival 5G telecoms system.

Germany, France and Italy, with powerful car industries, were among 21 countries to vote against the EC proposal at a Brussels meeting of EU representatives, an EU official said. This contrasted with EU lawmakers in April who endorsed the wifi plan over 5G technology. The auto and tech industries have been split over which technology works better and is safer.

The European Commision, which wants to set benchmarks for a market that could generate billions of euros in revenues for carmakers, telecoms operators and equipment makers, has said wifi is available now, unlike 5G, and would help road safety.

Uber and Lyft strikes

US drivers stop taking rides in protest over pay

Rideshare drivers are striking and protesting in major cities across the United States, with many participating in a 24-hour strike of the Uber and Lyft apps that began at midnight on 8 May.

Cities affected by the stoppage – which varies in length from two-hour strikes to day-long boycotts – include Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, San Diego, Philadelphia and others. Strikes are also expected overseas in Britain, Australia and elsewhere.

The protests come the day before Uber launches its shares in a public offering on the US stock exchange.

Low productivity jobs continue to drive employment growth

Employment is rising in OECD countries

The latest Compendium of Productivity Indicators says the trend has compounded the impact of generally weak business investment on productivity growth. The downward pressure on wages may have allowed firms to defer investment decisions, instead meeting increased demand by hiring additional staff and, in turn, undermining the potential for investment-driven productivity growth, the report says.

In France, Germany and the United Kingdom, the top three sectors with the largest employment gains between 2010 and 2017 accounted for one third of total job creation but paid below average wages. Moreover, in Belgium, Finland, Italy and Spain, industries with above average labour productivity levels saw net job losses. The data show wage growth (adjusted for inflation) improving in recent years but remaining below pre-crisis rates in two thirds of OECD countries despite a period of negligible or slow wage growth, and earlier declines in purchasing power in the aftermath of the crisis. Indeed, real wages remain below crisis levels in Greece, Italy and Spain, and have also contracted in recent years in Belgium and Canada.

More jobs in lower paid sectors such as accommodation and catering and health and residential care, weigh on average wages across the economy as a whole.

Amazon’s warehouse-worker tracking system can automatically fire people without a human supervisor’s involvement

Amazon has fired more than 300 workers, citing productivity, at a single facility in Baltimore in a single year 

Amazon’s demanding culture of worker productivity has been revealed in multiple investigations. But a new report indicates that the company doesn’t just track worker productivity at its warehouses — it also has a system that can automatically fire them.

Amazon has fired more than 300 workers, citing productivity, at a single facility in Baltimore in a single year (August 2017 through September 2018), The Verge’s Colin Lecher reported. The Verge cited a letter by an Amazon attorney as part of a case with the National Labor Relations Board.

An Amazon spokesperson confirmed to Business Insider, “Approximately 300 employees turned over in Baltimore related to productivity in this timeframe. In general, the number of employee terminations have decreased over the last two years at this facility as well as across North America.”

Amazon’s system tracks a metric called “time off task,” meaning how much time workers pause or take breaks, The Verge reported. It has been previously reported that some workers feel so pressured that they don’t take bathroom breaks.

Uber’s self-driving unit valued at $7.25 billion

Softbank, Toyota and Denso will invest $1 billion

Uber’s autonomous vehicle unit has raised $1 billion from a consortium of investors including SoftBank Group Corp, giving the company a much-needed funding boost for its pricey self-driving ambitions on the eve of its public stock offering.

Uber Technologies Inc said on Thursday that the investment values its Advanced Technologies Group, which works to develop autonomous driving technology, at $7.25 billion. SoftBank will invest $333 million from its $100 billion Vision Fund, while Toyota Motor Corp and automotive parts supplier Denso Corp will invest a combined $667 million.

Toyota will also contribute up to an additional $300 million over the next three years to help cover the costs of building commercial self-driving vehicles, Uber said.