Must Read Money Stories for Friday, June 17

by June 17, 2016

Must Read Money StoriesPlaying Matchmaker.

There’s YouTube and Google. Instagram and Facebook. And now, LinkedIn and Microsoft. Where does that leave Twitter? The New York Times reports the buzz on Wall Street is that Twitter needs a suitor fast — or it risks a corporate takeover. At one point this week, Twitter shares climbed 17 percent on deal speculation. But analysts also cautioned that Twitter faces unique hurdles. It April, the social media giant reported user growth was little changed on top of worse-than-expected revenue. The company also said it was operating under a “substantial loss” using generally accepted accounting rules.

Viacom Upheaval. 

The drama at Viacom Inc. continued on Thursday when Sumner Redstone ousted five of the media company’s directors, including Chairman and CEO Philippe Dauman. While Dauman was removed from the board, he will remain CEO. Redstone, a 93-year-old billionaire, leads National Amusements, which controls Viacom and CBS Corp. Reuters reports the move will likely make for a heated power struggle over the future of Redstone’s $40 billion empire. At the heart of the struggle is whether the elderly Redstone is making the decisions or being controlled by family members who want to take back Viacom from Dauman.

Makeup Merger.

Bloomberg reports New York-based Revlon Inc. on Thursday agreed to buy Elizabeth Arden Inc. for $14 a share. The acquisition will add both celebrity perfumes and other makeup products to Revlon’s cosmetic line. The deal values Elizabeth Arden at about $870 million, Revlon said in a statement on Thursday. The all-cash deal is a 50 percent premium over Elizabeth Arden’s closing price of $9.31, according to Bloomberg.

Airline Blues.

It’s been a tough year so far for airlines, and Sunday’s mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando could add to their woes. CNN Money reports most of the major airline stocks are down substantially this year. There’s fear about the Zika virus, rising fuel prices, too many flights, — and now fear over terrorism. Airline stocks took a hit across the board this week in the wake of the nation’s deadliest mass shooting. Year-to-date: American is down 31 percent; United down 27 percent; Delta down 25 percent; JetBlue down 28 percent; Alaska Air down 25 percent; and Southwest down 8 percent.