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CNBC Television 05 August, 2021 - 08:46am 45 views

What is a meme stock?

Thu, August 5, 2021, 8:57 AM ·1 min read. Data: YCharts; Chart: Axios Visuals. One definition of a meme stock is this: Any publicly listed company whose stock becomes a speculative vehicle beloved of retail investors armed with small-dollar Robinhood accounts. Yahoo NewsRobinhood becomes the newest meme stock

During the Parade of Nations that marked the opening of this year’s 2020 Tokyo Olympics, an NBC commentator acknowledged the entrance of the German team by noting the two Summer Games that their country has hosted: 1936 and 1972. In other words, Hitler and a terrorist massacre. The man on the microphone didn’t seem aware of what he’d just said, but what many probably heard was, “How bad can this year be?”

Bad, it turns out. You really have to feel a little sorry for NBC and its snakebit Games. The event is a year late thanks...

During the Parade of Nations that marked the opening of this year’s 2020 Tokyo Olympics, an NBC commentator acknowledged the entrance of the German team by noting the two Summer Games that their country has hosted: 1936 and 1972. In other words, Hitler and a terrorist massacre. The man on the microphone didn’t seem aware of what he’d just said, but what many probably heard was, “How bad can this year be?”

Bad, it turns out. You really have to feel a little sorry for NBC and its snakebit Games. The event is a year late thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic. There’s a troublesome time differential that makes maintaining suspense until prime time usually impossible. There’s an often-depressing onscreen atmosphere—much of fencing, boxing and tennis seem to be taking place in gloomy warehouse spaces, dimly lighted and virtually unoccupied (as have been the stands at most events). The Games were preceded by decisions about pot-smoking runners and women’s swimming caps that raised accusations of both sexism and racism. The director of the opening ceremony was fired because of a Holocaust joke he made in 1998. Scandals abound.

The downbeat mood is genuine. NBC has not had it easy. And many of the problems have been beyond its control.

However: The most memorable moment of these Olympic Games will be the decision by Simone Biles to withdraw from most events (coming back, she won bronze on balance beam). And that will have ramifications for many TV Olympics to come. The viewing public has been made aware that the pressure on athletes comes from many directions and, rightly or wrongly, the interview process as exercised by NBC will increasingly be seen as not just invasive but destructive.

Cameramen film events during the athletics competition

The network, which has been broadcasting the Summer Olympics since 1988 and has the rights through 2032, has always looked to impose additional drama on an event that’s already beyond dramatic, by latching onto the personalities who have the most mainstream appeal and the most sentimental stories. Getting “up close and personal”—a coinage, as it happens, of the ’70s Roone Arledge-era ABC, when that network aired the Olympics—is supposed to humanize the athletes. Better to humanize the interviewers: The segments are invariably cloying, with the on-air talent asking athletes impossible, witless questions of the “how does it feel?” variety. When Ms. Biles made her initial decision to withdraw, what came to mind was her interview earlier with NBC’s Hoda Kotb, who asked (and I paraphrase) what is it like carrying around the burden of being the greatest female gymnast of all time? Ms. Biles was her usual genial self, but you could see how this inanity could wear one down, never mind the combined pressure of competition and media. (See also: Naomi Osaka. )

Almost immediately after the Biles exit, sponsors, notably Toyota, began airing spots declaring the privacy of the athletes to be sacrosanct, a thing not to be violated, except perhaps by advertising. Which is the other thing NBC can’t do much about, unless it’s going to restructure itself entirely.

Jade Carey of the United States competes during the artistic gymnastics women's floor exercise final

Despite having grown up amid commercial interruptions, I’ve been surprised at NBC’s ad rate—not the cost of airtime but the number of commercials per hour. Flipping from one NBC outlet to another (with the exception of Peacock, where NBC has placed men’s basketball in an attempt to sell subscriptions to a public pretty sick of buying them), I seldom arrived on a channel where a commercial break wasn’t already in progress. Sometimes, you could watch an event and a commercial at the same time: During the furiously contested 800-meter men’s freestyle final—in which American swimmer Bobby Finke’s come-from-behind victory had former Olympian/analyst Rowdy Gaines even more agog than usual—the network went to split screen, because, after all, why devote all your available real estate to 16 lengths of swimming when all anybody really wants is the last 16 feet? Following that logic, the entire summer Olympics could be condensed into a 16-minute YouTube video.

Simone Biles’s withdrawal from competitions at the Tokyo Olympics has put renewed focus on mental health in sports. WSJ looks at how the stigma and treatment for athletes’ state of mind has shifted. Photo: Mike Blake/Reuters The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition

Every athlete has his or her own Olympic experience. So do viewers, though more and more of them have stayed away: According to Nielsen, viewership was down between 32% and 46% from what it was on similar nights of the 2016 Rio Games. Their preferences, to judge by NBC’s programming, are gymnastics, maybe swimming, some diving and women’s soccer, which is the one sport that gives the network a break: You don’t have to manufacture content to fill the down time—there barely is any, with two uninterrupted 45-minute halves per game. In other Olympic sports it’s plentiful and any network might be desperate to fill it up with homey stories, profiles and ads. During the coverage of the events themselves, Ms. Biles and her mental-health decision dominated a few moments of on-air banter. But it was fascinating, in a media-studies sense, as the analysts, including ex-Olympians Nastia Liukin and Tim Daggett, tried desperately to create a narrative around Jade Carey, who ascended to the final all-around competition with the exit of Ms. Biles (and won gold for floor). Did you know that Ms. Carey’s father, Brian, was also her coach? And that he was there providing the kind of support and encouragement most other athletes could only dream about? And that this was partly because no other athletes at the pandemic Olympics had their friends and family around them during the biggest moment of their lives? It was uplifting. And depressing.

So was the treatment of Ms. Carey by a biased panel of gymnastics judges, but I digress: The analysts on NBC are usually an enlightening bunch; the feel-good interviewers are a drag, and in the post-Biles era they will look more oppressive than ever. Old habits die hard. If NBC has any sense, it will realize Tokyo is killing them.

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2 Stocks Guiding Jim Cramer’s Approach to Markets Thursday

TheStreet 05 August, 2021 - 09:45am

Uber  (UBER) - Get Report reported a surprise one-time adjusted profit of 58 cents per share on revenue of $3.93 billion. The surprise profit was due to unrealized gains in Didi  (DIDI) - Get Report and Aurora  (ACB) - Get Report.

Moderna  (MRNA) - Get Report reported adjusted earnings of $6.46 per share on revenue of $4.35 billion and boosted its outlook for vaccine sales. 

Cramer said the moves in both stocks following their reports signify the importance of doing due diligence when it comes to portfolio management. 

"We scrutinizing the portfolio more than ever," Cramer said, referring to his Action Alerts PLUS charitable portfolio. 

WATCH: Jim Cramer's New Acronym for Pseudo-Lockdown Stocks

TheStreet 05 August, 2021 - 07:00am

But he sees some retail stocks as benefiting from the measures and has created a new acronym to classify this group of mega-retailers: 'WATCH' Stocks.

The 'WATCH' stocks are Walmart,  (WMT) - Get Report, Amazon  (AMZN) - Get Report, Target  (TGT) - Get Report, Costco  (COST) - Get Report, and Home Depot  (HD) - Get Report.

Jim Cramer also believes delivery service companies UPS  (UPS) - Get Report and FedEx  (FDX) - Get Report will also see increased business from the online shopping trend.

See more of Jim Cramer's insights on WATCH stocks.

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