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Big banks, big opportunity? Earnings season kicks off

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Each quarter, publicly listed companies share their earnings reports with their investors and the general public. These reports provide insights into each company’s performance and more often than not, impact their stock prices. Over the next six weeks, companies will be sharing their reports for the fourth quarter of 2018 (Q4), with major banks kicking off the earnings season.

Reporting earnings in a challenging market

This earnings season has a very meaningful backdrop, as Wall Street has been heavily impacted by external forces recently. Firstly, the Fed’s drive to hike rates over the past year, with four rate hikes in 2018, has put pressure on the market.

Perhaps the most important factor causing Wall Street to struggle recently has been the rising yield of 10-year bonds. These bonds, issued by the US Treasury, present a relatively low-risk investment option and produce steady returns twice a year. When the interest produced by these bonds is high, it could push investors away from the stock market, as the safer option is now also high yielding. Recently, 10-year bond yields have been giving investors interest rates of 2.73%.

Entering this earnings season, many companies face the challenge of remaining a lucrative investment option for their shareholders. For some companies in the financial sector, this season might be especially crucial, as they have to recover from less-than-impressive results last quarter.

Banking on earnings

The last time around, several large financial institutions disappointed their investors by displaying subpar performance. Wells Fargo is one of the companies that is hoping for a turnaround. The financial powerhouse has been in a slump over the past several quarters, still trying to recover from a scandal of two years ago, in which it was revealed that its employees created fake accounts for clients, in order to meet sales targets. Last July, the company experienced a 1.3 % increase in its stock price, following the Q3 earnings report that exceeded expectations.

Indicative prices for illustration purposes

Another financial institution that is looking to make a comeback is Citigroup, which experienced a 2.5% increase in stock price following its Q3 earnings report. However, the financial sector was not all negative last quarter. Morgan Stanley was able to beat market expectations and its share price spiked 5% following better-than-expected results. These financial institutions, alongside other major players, such as JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America, have a lot to prove this quarter.

Investing in the financial sector on eToro

TheBigBanks CopyPortfolio is one of eToro’s first Market CopyPortfolios, offering investors a thematic investment opportunity in a fully allocated portfolio comprised of leading banks and financial institutions. Like all CopyPortfolios, TheBigBanks was created and is managed by eToro’s Investment Committee. The Portfolio is rebalanced periodically by the committee in an attempt to optimise performance.

The upcoming earnings season will no doubt impact markets, and since the financial sector is the first major segment to report, investors will be watching it closely over the coming weeks. To stay posted on recent and upcoming earnings reports, follow the eToro Earnings Reports Calendar.

Past performance is not an indication of future results. Data presented is less than 5 years old and may not suffice as a basis for investment decisions. This is not investment advice. Your capital is at risk.

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Cybersecurity took center stage in 2018 and could present an exciting investment opportunity

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Cybersecurity has always been a topic of importance for both enterprises and individuals. However, 2018 was riddled with events that highlighted just how crucial an issue it is, following privacy breaches such as the Cambridge Analytica Facebook scandal. With renewed interest in online safety and privacy, cybersecurity stocks are attracting increasing attention in the investment world.

2018 – the year of the hack

The attention to online privacy reached new heights in 2018, following the Cambridge Analytica scandal, which jeopardised the data of some 87 million Facebook users¹. The scandal put in question many of Facebook’s user privacy practices, resulting in Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifying before Congress. A month later, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into effect in the EU, applying new restrictions on any entity that collects personal data.

The dynamics of online security

One of the reasons cybersecurity is, and will remain, a hot topic is the ever-changing nature of the online world. With so much sensitive information being stored in the cloud and on computer networks, the risks are ever growing and the need for effective cyberdefenses is ever present. From “simple” risks, such as phishing scams, to complex ransomware programs and crypto mining bots, each person and enterprise with an online presence is in danger of falling victim to a cyber attack.

The cybersecurity industry is huge, estimated at more than…

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Mobile payments is a big market – and it’s about to get much bigger

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In recent years, mobile payment has become a key method of online shopping and other forms of eCommerce. With more members of Generation Z, who grew up in a world where smartphones were not an innovation, but a reality, this segment of the financial space is expected to grow tremendously in coming years. With more smartphones in people’s pockets and an increasing number of countries shifting towards cashless economies, it is no surprise that many of the leading payment technology companies in the world are constantly working to introduce new and improved payment solutions.

In 2016, the mobile payment market was valued at $601 billion¹. By 2017, it grew to nearly $720 billion², and it is expected to cross the $1 trillion milestone in 2019³. Forecasts suggest that it will continue to grow, reaching anywhere between $2.7 and $4.5 trillion by 2023. This growth will be prompted by many catalysts, which will both get more people to use mobile payments and make it easier for existing users to conduct more of their transactions with mobile devices.

Going mobile

The introduction of mobile internet and smartphones placed mobile payment at the fingertips of billions around the world. As the industry grew, more users started using mobile payments, due to its seamless, frictionless nature. Moreover, using an application for making payments gives the user more transparency and control over their finances,…

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The trading secret of kela-leo: Profit is important, lower risk is more important!

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kela-leo is a Chinese Popular Investor who was featured on ‘Editor’s Choice’. He says: “During my trading journey, I found that strict risk management is the premise of long-term trading. Based on this knowledge, by combining strategic models and economic policy trend analysis, we can bring in an ideal profit.” Here is an interview we held with him:

76% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Past performance is not an indication of future results. This is not investment advice.

Tell us a little bit about yourself.
My name is Lingxia Cao, I am 31 years old. I have 2 babies and a wonderful wife. They all support me to trade on eToro.

Did you have previous experience with financial investments before joining eToro?
Yes, in the past I had experience in investing options in Manhattan, America. I started to deal in currency futures from 2007, but at that time China didn’t have currency margin trading yet.

What is your type of trading strategy?
My trading model prefers value investment to judge according to the analysis of economic fundamentals and policy, and thus, I combine some tools like price status to set positions. Middle-long term investments are the main…

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