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What To Make Of Wednesday’s Global Market Sell-Off

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The stock market witnessed a vicious sell-off yesterday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average [DJI] plunged 832 points, with technology stocks at the forefront of this correction.

The Invesco QQQ ETF [QQQ] fell 4.4% while the Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF [XLK] declined 4.9%. The sell-off was similar to the one witnessed earlier this year in February.

However, Jamie Cox from Harris Financial Group is not too concerned. Cox stated, “This was way different than February and March. In February, everything got shellacked. Even banks didn’t get hit that bad today. It wasn’t what you’d expect in a full-blown washout sell-out. To me, that was the most important piece, that this is not going to herald something worse.”

What drove the sell-off

This year has been a rather bumpy ride for investors. Markets have been impacted by escalating trade wars between the United States and China and rising oil prices. Recently, there have been concerns over the upcoming earnings season.

But the primary driver for yesterday’s slump were concerns over the rising FED rates. The 10-year U.S. Treasury yield is close to the 10-year high of 3.2%. Investors are right to skeptical about a rise in interest rates as higher rates tend to restrain economic growth.

FAANG stocks routed

The FAANG stocks, Wall Street winners for several years, lost close to a combined $180B in market value. FAANG is an acronym for internet giants Facebook [FB], Apple [AAPL], Amazon [AMZN], Netflix [NLFX] and Google [GOOG].

Joe Saluzzi from Themis Trading stated, “A lot of the high flyers are the ones that have gotten beat up. The FAANG stocks, the Amazons of the world, they are up ridiculous. Those are momentum-type trades. A little air coming out is a healthy thing as long as fundamentals haven’t changed. I don’t have a problem with that type of sell-off.”

Sell-off picks up speed, impacts global markets

The sell-off was not limited to the United States market alone. According to this Wall Street Journal report, the Stoxx Europe 600 fell 1.8% in early trade while the mayhem in China continued with stocks falling 6%.

Indices in Japan, South Korea, and India were also down in early market trading. Analyst Paras Anand from Fidelity International stated, “The sharp selloff in the U.S. has likely caught no one by surprise. If anything, market participants have been wondering how, in the face of tighter money, a tighter labor market and rising oil prices, the U.S. has continued to be so resilient.”

Earnings season important

The upcoming earnings season is critical for the health of the stock market. Investors are wary about inflation impacting corporate earnings, driven by higher input costs. In case companies can outperform market estimates, we might be in for another short-term bull run that will take indices to record highs by the end of 2018.

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Will Cloud Gaming Drive The Next Big Gaming Transition?

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The global gaming industry has always been a disruptive one. Nuclear physicist Edward Condon developed the first computer game in 1941 called Nim, one which pretty much saw the computer win 90% of the time.

The disruption didn’t fizzle out. Soon afterwards, the first programming guidelines were written for a chess game developed by Claude Shannon, while a decade later the US Department of Defense created a war game — STAGE.

This really set the stage for what was to come later video games. American investor Ralph Baer wasted no time and conceived the idea of playing video games on TV, and the world’s first gaming console was released. The rapid evolution of gaming consoles coupled with gaming design and the introduction of graphics cards have taken the global gaming industry by storm.

In the last decade, the evolution of smartphones opened up a totally new segment known as digital gaming. In 2016,  Activision Blizzard paid close to $6B to acquire King Digital- a digital gaming behemoth. Not one to trail far behind, the eSports segment, despite its nascency, proved to be a long-term revenue driver for top gaming firms.

Will cloud gaming be the next key driver in global games?

Now companies such as Microsoft [MSFT], Google [GOOG] and Electronic Arts [EA] aim to create a market for cloud gaming. So what exactly is cloud gaming? It’s similar to online streaming services such as Netflix [NFLX] and Amazon Prime [AMZN], but with games.

Cloud gaming will allow users to play games on their computer or mobile devices. A remote server will send players video feed and receive controller inputs. This now means that players no longer need to purchase gaming consoled to play the latest games. All you need is a stable internet connection.

Google’s cloud gaming project is called Project Stream and the company launched a beta test last month. Players required a Google Chrome browser and an internet connection of 25 Mbps or higher.

Microsoft which also manufactures the Xbox consoles announced its cloud gaming platform known as Project xCloud. It has confirmed several Xbox games for beta testing such as Halo, Minecraft, and Gears of War.

The tech giant is hoping for growing interest in cloud gaming to offset any declining sales in gaming consoles.

Following Google and Microsoft, top gaming publisher Electronic Arts has forayed into this space, with a project known as Project Atlas.

Will this move garner global attention?

The shift to cloud gaming is going to be as disruptive as any in the gaming space. Players can now subscribe and stream games online instead of spending over $300 for the latest gaming console. The cloud gaming space is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 26% between 2017 and 2023.

While Netflix and Amazon have changed the consumption of entertainment via cord cutting, it is very likely that cloud gaming will soon be a hit among players in a few years time. Is this the end of the gaming console?

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10 Stock Terms Every Newbie Investor Should Know

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Investing in the financial markets can seem quite tricky. There are far too many stories where people tried to play the stock market without much success. When the markets are on a roll, everyone wants a piece of the pie.

Here are 10 terms every investor cannot afford to miss.

1. Market Cap

The market capitalization of a stock is simply the total number of outstanding shares multiplied by the share price of the company. Companies are generally differentiated on the basis of market cap.

Small cap companies generally have a market cap of between $300M and $2B, while mid-caps are between $2B and $10B. Any company with a market cap over $10B is considered a large-cap. While small-cap and mid-cap stocks have historically outperformed large caps, they are also way riskier.

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Being A Millionaire: What Does It Actually Mean?

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You’re dreaming about luxury vacations and nice cars. OH, you can’t wait to be a millionaire.

But I’m here to tell you to think again.

While having more money is never a bad thing, what you’ve probably envisioned and what the reality is don’t match up. Let me explain.

What is the Definition of a Millionaire?

By definition, a millionaire is a person or family who has a net worth in excess of $1 million dollars. This answer is very U.S. centric as different countries have their own versions of this answer. For example, it takes 117 Japanese Yen to make 1 USD, so $1 million Yen doesn’t get you very far!

Even though in the U.S. the concept of a millionaire is static, what those million dollars gets you over time can change dramatically.

Inflation

An example of that is the effect of inflation. A million dollars in 1950 is worth about $10.5 million in today’s dollars. But, the definition of a “millionaire” didn’t change. So, Today’s millionaires have 1/10 the amount of money that millionaires had when your parents were born.

So, the idea of “millionaire” status is really less meaningful than it was decades ago.

Just the rate of inflation will create more “millionaires” every year.

Exchange Rates

Another thing that messes with the definition of a millionaire is the fluctuation of exchange rates and purchasing power.

Let’s go back to the example above with Japan. We know that 1 US Dollar can get 117 Japanese Yen. We know that $1 can get you a chicken sandwich at a fast food restaurant. If you can go to Japan and get a similar sandwich for ¥ 117 then your purchasing power hasn’t changed.

The reason why I bring this up is to show that having a million dollars may be worth a lot in one place in the world but not worth much elsewhere depending on purchasing power.

How Many Millionaires in the U.S.?

in 2017, there were roughly 11 million US households with a net worth over $1 million or around 15 million individuals.

There are roughly 325 million people in the U.S. which means that around 4.6% of the US population are millionaires. In other words, around 1 in 20 people are millionaires.

Doesn’t sound like it’s rare, does it?

When you go to the mall, a huge number of cars in that parking lot are owned by millionaires.

In your child’s classroom, chances are one of those children were born to a millionaire family.

Chances are, one of your friends or family members is a millionaire and you don’t even know it.

But, if so many people are millionaires, where are all the Lambos and mansions?

It’s Not What You Think

Net Worth is not cash in the bank. You can’t spend $1m when it’s coming from the value of your home or 401k. Even if it was cash in the bank, it’s not even a lot of money.

$1m doesn’t get very far. You can buy a decent house with it but that comes with expensive maintenance, lawn care, repairs, and a crap ton of new furniture to fill up 5x more space than you’re used to having.

It can get a foreign sports car, but that comes along with $500 oil changes and $1,000 for a new tire (remember, you need 4).

$1,000,000 invested conservatively could earn you around $40,000-$50,000 per year in interested. That’s hardly enough to retire on especially as old age comes with added costs of health care.

But, if most of that $1m is in your home, which is true for most people, it’s not earning any interested. Even if it was, you’d have to sell your home to get that money. Then what?

Don’t Focus on Becoming a Millionaire

Of course, anyone would rather have $1m than not have it. But, don’t make it your focus. Having it isn’t going to get your cars or vacations. Net worth is one thing to measure, but it’s more important to focus on cash flow.

Yearly passive income will buy you anything you want. It’s money you can spend. It’s cash in the bank. Net worth is money locked up somewhere. You need assets, but assets don’t buy you things. If that asset doesn’t produce cash flow, you can only use it by selling it and that’s not a good place to be.

What’s more important is focusing on building up passive sources of income from real estate, side businesses, stocks, or other ventures.

Focus on building up $40k or $100k in passive income rather than focusing on having $1m in net worth.

This article originally appeared on IdealREI. Follow them on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

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