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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Apple, Facebook, Alphabet, NVIDIA and Alibaba

For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – April 12, 2016 – announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include the Apple (AAPL), Facebook (FB), Alphabet (GOOGL), NVIDIA (NVDA) and Alibaba ( BABA).

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Here are highlights from Monday’s Analyst Blog:

Technology Stock Roundup

With the FBI finally managing to hack Apple’s (AAPL) phone, governments and private bodies have been questioning the security of Apple products. The FBI said that it was just an older version of iPhone that it got into. Apple confirmed that it was increasing encryption on future operating systems, but everyone was left feeling uneasy.

That was the backdrop for the week’s news, which included concerns about private sharing on Facebook (FB), Alphabet (GOOGL) Google’s efforts to build Intel alternatives, NVIDIA (NVDA) launching some pretty exciting products and Alibaba ( BABA) news and rumors among other things.

Here are the top stories.

Facebook Users Getting Cagey

Facebook users have stopped sharing what they’re doing every moment of the day. While this is a most-welcomed change for people like me, the media is making a big deal of it. It’s not as if there is a dearth of reactions either, there are plenty of heated debates and engagements despite the repeated removal of content for daring to make “politically incorrect” statements. Just the personal details of users are down and who can complain about that!

Also, professionally shared content is on the rise, more monthly users are converting to daily users and engagement on the platform is up. In fact, a recent comScore report shows that 18-34 year-olds spend more time on Facebook than any other platform (more than 30 minutes a day compared to 300-400 minutes a month for Snapchat and Instagram. Twitter is far behind at 200 minutes a month. All this goes to show that the platform is increasing in popularity, which in turn means more $$$.

NVIDIA Mega Launch

Last week saw NVIDIA launch the 16nm Tesla P100 GPU based on its Pascal architecture. With 15 billion transistors, it’s being touted as the world’s biggest chip. Data center providers like Dell, HPE and IBM are already using the product.

The other big announcement was DGX-1, which is being considered the world’s fastest super computing cluster tailored for deep learning. This product combines two Intel Xeon chips with 8 Tesla P100s, packing in massive compute power and speed.

NVIDIA’s advantage is its advanced GPUs, which are built for simultaneous processing, thus allowing more data to be processed simultaneously and thereby increasing speeds. This is what gives it an edge in the high performance computing (HPC) segment where Intel has been slow to take share.

Google Pushing for Intel Alternative

While Intel has successfully sold it custom chips for some time now, Google is determined to keep its options open. The search engine provider currently consumes a large number of chips and this usage is only likely to go up as it grows into a more significant supplier of cloud infrastructure services. So it has every incentive to push prices down either with its own development efforts or by keeping the pressure on Intel.

That’s the reason it remains a member of the Open Compute Project that Facebook started some time back. Google and Qualcomm are also using ARM designs to make devices for the data center. Recently it announced a separate development effort with Rackspace using IBM Power 9 architecture (Power 9 will release next year and Google will subsequently make the design available to the Open Compute Project).

Alibaba Active Last Week

Alibaba made some important announcements and took some important decisions last week. The first of these was with respect to GMV in the ecommerce business, which it says has doubled from 2012. It also set new targets (GMV of 6 trillion yuan by 2020, implying an 18.9% CAGR ). It also announced that it was taking Alipay to Europe to help Chinese tourists pay seamlessly on their European travels.

It also announced an agreement between Ali Health and Tmall for medicine sales. The South China Morning Post it bought last December is now being offered free as the company tries to maximize the number of users. Then there were unconfirmed rumors that the company was thinking of increasing its stake in messaging platform Weibo and had also agreed to back the buyout of dating site Momo.

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APPLE INC (AAPL): Free Stock Analysis Report
FACEBOOK INC-A (FB): Free Stock Analysis Report
ALPHABET INC-A (GOOGL): Free Stock Analysis Report
NVIDIA CORP (NVDA): Free Stock Analysis Report
ALIBABA GROUP (BABA): Free Stock Analysis Report
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