1.GOOGLE- EU antitrust regulators have sought information from advertisers regarding Google advertising technology practices, a European Commission document seen by Reuters shows.
Alphabet-owned Google, the world’s largest online search engine, has been hit with fines totalling 8.25 billion euros ($10 billion) in the last three years for blocking rivals in online shopping, Android smartphones and online advertising.
It now faces two European Union investigations into its advertising practices, focused on technology and data.
Google and Facebook together capture over half of the internet ad sales market globally. Both companies are currently the target of a U.S. lawsuit over their 2018 deal which gives Facebook’s advertiser clients the option to place ads within Google’s network of publishing partners
2.LG :-South Korea’s LG Electronics said on Wednesday it was considering all options for its loss-making mobile division, which analysts said could include shutting its smartphone business or selling off parts of the unit.
LG said in a statement that 23 consecutive quarters of losses in its mobile business had totalled around 5 trillion won ($4.5 billion) amid stiff competition.
Shares in LG closed up 12.8%, against a rise of 0.7% in the broader KOSPI index.
“In the global market, competition in the mobile business including smartphones has gotten fiercer,” LG said in the clearest sign yet that it could be considering a winding down of the troubled business.
“LG Electronics believes we have reached the point where we need to make the best decision about our mobile phone business, considering current and future competitiveness.”
Chief Executive Brian Kwon said the company planned to retain employees regardless of what happened to the mobile unit.
3.AMAZON:-Amazon is suing EU antitrust regulators for allowing the Italian competition watchdog to pursue its own case against the U.S. online retail giant over the way it selects sellers, arguing that this should be wrapped into an EU investigation.
Amazon took its case to the Luxembourg-based General Court, Europe’s second-highest, on Tuesday, asking it to annul the EU’s decision to exclude Italy from the wider investigation, a court filing shows.
The move came two months after the European Commission opened an investigation into the criteria the company uses to select winners of its “buy box”, which allows customers to add items from a specific retailer directly into their shopping carts.
The probe will also examine whether the company gives preferential treatment to its own retail offers and marketplace sellers that use its logistics and delivery services.
The Italian case was launched in 2019 over the same issue but focuses on the Italian logistics markets.
Amazon said the EU should absorb the Italian case for the sake of consistency and efficiency.
4. TWITTER:-Twitter has locked the account of China’s U.S. embassy for a tweet that defended China’s policies in the Xinjiang region, which the U.S. social media platform said violated the firm’s policy against “dehumanization”.
The Chinese Embassy account, @ChineseEmbinUS, posted a tweet this month that said that Uighur women were no longer “baby making machines,” citing a study reported by state-backed newspaper China Daily.
The tweet was removed by Twitter and replaced by a label stating that it was no longer available. Although Twitter hides tweets that violate its policies, it requires account owners to manually delete such posts. The Chinese embassy’s account has not posted any new tweets since Jan. 9.
Twitter’s suspension of the embassy’s account came a day after the Trump administration, in its final hours, accused China of committing genocide in Xinjiang, a finding endorsed by the incoming Biden administration.
The Biden administration did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Twitter’s move.
5.BLACK ROCK:- BlackRock Inc is adding bitcoin futures as an eligible investment to two funds, a company filing showed, in a move to bring the world of cryptocurrency to its clients.
The world’s largest asset manager said it could use bitcoin derivatives for its funds BlackRock Strategic Income Opportunities and BlackRock Global Allocation Fund Inc.
The funds will invest only in cash-settled bitcoin futures traded on commodity exchanges registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the company said in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday.
Chief Executive Officer Larry Fink had said at the Council of Foreign Relations in December that bitcoin is seeing big giant moves every day and could possibly evolve into a global market.Earlier this month, Bitcoin, the world’s most popular cryptocurrency, hit a record high of $40,000, rallying more than 900% from a low in March and having only just breached $20,000 in mid-December.