Top Stories

NASA Renames Street Outside Its HQ As “Hidden Figures Way”

As part of honoring the three women of African-American origin who had played an important role in paving the way in space agency for posterity, NASA has named the streets outside its headquarters as “Hidden Figures Way”. The three women namely Katherine Johnson, Mary Jackson and Dorothy Vaughan had made remarkable contributions in the field of space flight in 1960s. However their struggles and successes came to be known to the people only after many decades.

Margot Lee Shetterly, who was the author of the book which was the inspiration behind the Oscar-nominated movie, said in Washington that Hidden Figures helped in valuing the contributions of the unnoticed people who made important contributions at the starting of this story. She said that we have reached in the present state and who we are now is because of the courage and persistence of those people. The unveiling of street name was attended by Ms Shetterly along with each of the woman’s family members.

Ted Cruz, Republican Senator had cosponsored the bill for the renaming of the block and he said that the coming generations would be inspired by the name. He further said that when small boys and girls come to visit NASA they would look up and see this sign. This would serve as powerful evidence that if somebody happened to tell the little children that they cannot do something, they were telling a lie.

It was in the 1940s that African-American women who were college educated were recruited by NASA as human computers. However those people had to face discrimination at work, both gender and racial. NASA will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of their first moon walk on July 20 and the renaming of the streets has come ahead of this celebration. NASA has announced that by 2024 they would be sending Americans to moon and this would include the very first woman to be walking on the surface of the moon. NASA said that of the total 500 above people who have gone to space, the percentage of women is less than 11%.


Elon Musk Assures Shareholders On Tesla’s Model 3—Report

Recently, a shareholder’s meet was organized by Tesla. The company had witnessed a considerable amount of change since the meeting took place last year. Elon Musk had to face lawsuits filed by Securities and Exchange Commission. The lawsuit was filed against him after Musk claimed that he has enough money with which Tesla can be turned into a private company.

Presently, during the shareholder’s meet, Elon Musk said that he does not want to talk about the things which had taken place in the past. During the meet, Musk focused on Tesla. He told his audience that the demand for Tesla’s Model 3 is surpassing its manufacturing. Elon Musk also said that within a year, Tesla will be able to run on auto pilot mode. At the meeting Musk also talked about various other vehicles which Tesla is manufacturing at present viz. Model Y, pickup and semi truck.

Though Elon Musk promised about various things during the meeting but investors can’t follow what he was saying. Shares of Tesla have come down more than 29% and on Tuesday price per share was recorded around $217.

The Model 3, which is considered as an iconic car designed by Tesla, loses its charm after buyers lost half of their tax credit. After the shareholder’s meet, share of Tesla showed a sudden spike of 3%. While speaking to the audience, Elon Musk said that its Model 3 is performing better than expected. At present, Tesla is also focusing to make cost effective batteries for Model 3 so that it can make the vehicle accessible to many other buyers.

Tesla is also preparing to develop a manufacturing unit in Shanghai where it will start to work on Model Y, pickup and semi truck. Musk also stated that the Company is set to unveil its Cyberpunk truck this summer. Elon Musk also said that due to manufacturing unit in Shanghai, the company will get upper hand in competing with indigenous car manufacturing companies.

Top Stories

Discount Factor Pulling American Consumers To Walmart, Costco, Target& America’s Dollar Stores

Although most retail stocks have fallen over the course of the last few weeks, some have managed to keep it together and come out unaffected. One statistic might explain why American dollar stores, Walmart and Target are successfully going ahead, whereas apparel chains and department stores have fallen.

Frugal customers now have increased spending powers, which is something retailers should factor in. Merrill Lynch and BOA stated that purchases by households with below $50000 income levels have grown by 6% during April when compared to last year. This is more than high-income and middle-income household spending growth rates.

Despite the China-US trade war, consumer confidence is still high due to low unemployment rates. Low-income household shoppers also went a lot to stores during the year’s start. However, instead of Nordstrom or Tiffany, they prefer Dollar Tree and Walmart.

This is the main reason discount stores are currently thriving even under unfavorable conditions elsewhere.

Outdated and enclosed shopping malls will be hit the most by this move. This will benefit Target and Walmart as competition in this sector shrinks even further.

Sears and JC Penny and other departmental stores have had to close stores in huge numbers. Forever 21, Dressbarn, Gap, A&F are all struggling currently. Dollar Tree, Dollar General, Costco, Target, and Walmart’s shares have gone up over 11%, 20%, 20%, 30% and 12% respectively this year. Web Smith, the founder of 2PM, a retail platform, stated that Americans had moved to empty lands filled with stores with the highest capita globally. The period including 1950s and later decades saw an explosion in suburban malls. People were convinced that this bubble wouldn’t ever pop.

However, it is going down for this sector rather quickly. 7150 closures have so far, been announced in 2019 by US retailers, as per reports from Coresight Research. Victoria’s Secret, Gymboree, Payless ShoeSource, Charlotte Russe, and Dressbarn were most affected.

However, BOA stated that low-income household spending was still going forward.


Amazon’s Bezos Brings Top Brass Into Public Limelight—Report

Jeff Wilke, head of Amazon’s consumer business globally has spent 2 decades at Amazon so far. Yet investors and consumers had never seen him in public. Wilke’s interview by CNBC was the first public appearance on behalf of Amazon since his promotion in 2016. This is in line with Bezos’ attempts to introduce his core team publically.

Bezos has become identifiable with Amazon, like Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates or Steve Jobs. Few of Amazon’s leaders are recognized outside company walls, unlike other companies, whose leaders are prominently known. Andy Jassy of AWS is now better known but most top execs are pariahs. However, Bezos is changing that. Investors have to know the execs handling their investments and Bezos is increasingly occupied by his other ambitious projects. Tom Forte of DA Davidson stated that Amazon was trying to shed its Bezos only image. He was surprised by Wilke’s interview.

Dave Limp was also interviewed by CNBC. The duo stated Amazon’s commitment to customer satisfaction in its businesses. Jeff Blackburn, Jay Carney, Dave Clark are all part of Bezos’ core team who are now making regular appearances at public events on behalf of Amazon. Forte stated that the company was preparing itself for operations after Bezos leaves.

While Bezos will lead for at least another decade, his bigger-than-life personality could cause a succession issue. However, due to its number of powerful execs and Bezos’ young age, relatively speaking, the company won’t have a big problem. Expansion is at all-time highs at Amazon. Drone delivery and voice tech, movie production, and retail have been under focus at Amazon. It is the 2nd highest valued company, behind Microsoft.

Over time, top executives are expected to turn brand ambassadors, promoting Amazon through public events and meetings. Bezos has his plate full, with Blue Origin, Washington Post and other start-up investment activities. He wants to reassure investors of Amazon’s abilities to survive without him. However, it is tough to see Amazon without Bezos at the driving wheel. When Bezos was asked if he ever got told no, he jokingly stated he did not. However, he then stated that he actively seeks out positive criticism.


Walmart To Soon Start Home-Delivery Services—Report

Walmart is all set to deliver groceries to their shoppers’ homes into kitchen refrigerators. Kansas City, Vero Beach, Missouri, and Pittsburgh will be able to access this option. Based on inputs from here, it plans to expand to other states and countries accordingly. No plans have been released so far.

Bart Stein is leading this project. The project has been undergoing testing so far and is a product of Walmart’s own tech incubator. Walmart is competing with Amazon for enabling faster delivery periods. Walmart has promised to attract 75% of Amazon customers by offering next-day delivery, while Amazon is launching features that allow delivery to garages, homes, and cars.

The online grocery shopping market is competitive and is expected to widen further. Around 37% of US consumers bought their groceries on the Internet in these 12 months, compared to 23% in 2018, which meant an increase of 35 million people. However, beverage and food sales were less than 2.2% in 2018.

Walmart has seen a 6.9% growth in online grocery sales this year. Walmart’s new system will work by customers have a smart sensor lock installed in their homes. When groceries are ordered, an employee will walk into the house and place groceries in the consumer’s fridge. Access will be granted via the lock, with consumers monitoring employee behavior.

Pricing hasn’t been announced as of now. Workers in this project will undergo thorough training and vetting procedures, which will ensure they treat customer’s house with respect. Returns can also be accepted this way, by leaving items on countertops. Marc Lore of Walmart stated that as its popularity grows via early adopters, more people would start using it like Airbnb. Walmart would do batch deliveries to reduce delivery costs. Boxes could also be eliminated this way, ensuring significant cost-savings. The company had announced a similar service in 2017. However, that failed soon. This current service would incorporate those efforts too, Lore said.