Saudi Aramco Expected to Beat Apple as ‘Most Valuable Company’

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Oil giant Saudi Aramco recently had the world’s biggest IPO of US$25.6 billion. At that level it has a market valuation of US$1.7 trillion, beating Apple to become the world’s most valuable company.

Aramco did not say when shares would start trading on the Saudi stock market but two sources said it was scheduled for Dec. 11.

Saudi Arabia relied on domestic and regional investors to sell a 1.5% stake after lukewarm interest from abroad, even at the reduced valuation of $1.7 trillion.

Budget Burndown Gives You a Visual Spending Tracker

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Budget Burndown is a new financial app for the App Store that gives you a nice, visual spending tracker so you can quickly see where your money is going. Features: At-a-glance visibility into how much you’re spending against your monthly budget; View your total amount spent and all of your transactions across multiple cards in a single list; Your bank credentials are end-to-end encrypted, so your information is completely safe; Get helpful features like the home screen widget, custom notifications, editable transactions, and multiple linked cards; and you don’t have to create an account; just link whichever cards you want to track. Additionally, I also personally approve of its privacy policy. App Store: Budget Burndown – Free (Offers In-App Purchases)

Apple Prepares to Offer Bonds to Fund Share Buybacks

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Apple is preparing a bond offering to raise money for share buybacks so it doesn’t have to dip into its cash hoard. The company hasn’t offered bonds since 2017.

We estimate the net proceeds from sales of the notes will be approximately $ , after deducting underwriting discounts and our offering expenses. We intend to use such net proceeds for general corporate purposes, including repurchases of our common stock and payment of dividends under our program to return capital to shareholders, funding for working capital, capital expenditures, acquisitions and repayment of debt.

Comparing Apple Card's Privacy to Other Credit Cards

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Geoffrey Fowler compared an Amazon credit card with Apple Card to see which one is more private. The knee jerk response is to say Apple, and it’s true that Apple does have more privacy than others. But when it comes to the Apple Card, that privacy only appears under certain circumstances.

Despite a federal privacy law covering cards, I found that six types of businesses could mine and share elements of my purchase, multiplied untold times by other companies they might have passed it to. Credit cards are a spy in your wallet — and it’s time that we add privacy, alongside rewards and rates, to how we evaluate them.

Bottom line: Neither Apple nor Goldman Sachs collects or shares your data. But retailers and card networks like Mastercard can still collect and sell your purchase data.

Emmanuel Macron Says its Crazy That Apple Gets Tax Haven

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Apple with bags of money

French President Emmanuel Macron says it’s crazy that companies like Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google get a “permanent tax haven status.”

The reference to ‘tax haven status’ relates to practices used by Apple and others to funnel profits on European sales through Ireland, and then to claim large deductions for R&D costs incurred in the US. There have also been accusations that Apple assigns most of its European profits to a subsidiary which exists only on paper and which pays no taxes anywhere.

Does the Apple Card Count as a Mastercard World Elite?

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Redditor u/mdhardeman did some digging into the Apple Card. After running a test transaction they found that the card was listed as a Mastercard World Elite.

The Mastercard World Elite consumer credit cards are significantly more expensive to accept than a plain Mastercard credit card or basic rewards card. In exchange, the theory goes, Mastercard ensures that those cards only make it into the hands of premium consumers who, on average, spend more on many purchases and have a larger amount of disposable income. In exchange, Mastercard demands the higher reimbursement for the card issuers to be able to fund a benefits package that will attract heavy spenders to their World Elite card products.