United Internet 9-month EBITDA Down 5.0%; Cuts FY Sales Growth Outlook

Weak Ruble Channels Sanctions Risk Into Economic Disruption

The ruble has rebounded in the wake of the U.S. election, but geopolitical risk remains elevated, particularly if Democrat Joe Biden wins the presidency. The currency has weakened 20% against the dollar this year, and aBloomberg Economics model suggests Russia-specific factors account for most of the decline. For the economy, depreciation serves as a shock absorber, but higher import prices would stoke inflation and weigh on demand, and market instability has forced the central bank to delay adding stimulus.

Hedge fund billionaire Leon Cooperman says he voted for Joe Biden

Billionaire hedge-fund manager Leon Cooperman revealed that he voted for Joe Biden for president even though he expected President Trump to make him richer.

Cooperman, 77,  who’s worth $2.5 billion, according to Forbes, has called himself a registered independent but he’s a longtime donor to Republican candidates and political committees. He also famously sparred with Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren over her proposal for a wealth tax last year.

“I voted my values and not my pocketbook,” the Omega Advisors founder told CNBC late Tuesday. “I’ll be richer tomorrow if Trump wins. I’ll probably be poorer tomorrow if Biden wins. But I voted my values.”

Cooperman took issue with Trump’s “interventionist” approach to economic policy. He specifically criticized the pressure Trump put on Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell to set negative interest rates, which the central bank has not done.

“He’s not a capitalist. I call him an interventionist,” Cooperman said. “We came into 2020 with a trillion-dollar budget deficit and a fully employed economy, yet he was trying to gun the economy.”

Cooperman told CNBC in August that he was undecided about whom to vote for this year. He has not given money to any federal candidates in the 2020 election cycle, but he donated $15,400 to Republicans in 2018 after contributing $1,000 to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign, Federal Election Commission records show.

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Donald Trump Jr. Mocked For Urging Dad To Declare ‘Total War’ Over Election

Donald Trump Jr. is not happy with how the election vote count is going and expects his dad to do something about it.

On Thursday, the president’s eldest son posted a tweet demanding that his pop “go to total war over this election to expose all of the fraud, cheating, dead/no longer in state voters, that has been going on for far too long.”

Like many of the tweets being posted by the president and brother Eric Trump these days, Twitter immediately tagged Donald Jr.’s post as potentially misleading.

Judging from the snarky reactions among Twitter users, Donald Jr.’s tweet didn’t exactly inspire the reaction he intended.

But some people had questions …

Trump Aide Ja’Ron Smith, Highest-Ranking Black Staffer, Departs

The highest-ranking Black person on Donald Trump’s White House staff, Ja’Ron Smith, has left his job, according to people familiar with the matter.

Smith was a deputy assistant to the president who worked with senior adviser Jared Kushner. His last day was Friday, the people said.

His White House e-mail returned an automated message on Friday: “Hello, I’m no longer at the White House.”

YETI Recalls Rambler Travel Mugs With Stronghold Lid

YETI Coolers, LLC has recalled Rambler travel mugs with stronghold lid citing injury and burn risks, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The recall involves about 241,500 units of Rambler 20 oz travel mugs that were manufactured in China. The travel mugs were sold in a variety of colors, through YETI stores nationwide and online at during October 2020 for about $35.

The recall only involves travel mugs with the date code 34204010, which is located on the bottom of its base.

The agency noted that the magnet slider on the lid can eject and hot contents can spill out, posing injury and burn hazards.

The Austin, Texas-based company initiated the recall after receiving two reports of the magnetic slider on the affected product being ejected after being sealed with hot liquid. However, no injuries have been reported to date.

Consumers are asked to stop using the Travel Mug and return the lid for a full refund.

In recent recalls, Mueller Austria in late October called back about 106,000 units of onion choppers as its locking tab can detach from the rest of the unit during use, causing hands and fingers to slide into the blades.

In July, Cookware Company recalled about 11,160 units of Greenpan SimmerLite Dutch Ovens with Lid, citing burn and injury hazards.

United Internet 9-month EBITDA Down 5.0%; Cuts FY Sales Growth Outlook

United Internet (UDIRF.PK) reported a 5.0% decline in consolidated EBITDA to 896.4 million euros in the first nine months of 2020 compared to the prior-year’s 944.0 million euros.

Earnings per share for the first nine months declined to 1.33 euros from 1.35 euros in the previous year. The prior-year earnings per share included positive extraordinary income from the sale of shares in virtual minds as well as an opposing effect from non-cash impairment charges on Tele Columbus shares.

Adjusted for those effects, operating earnings per share decreased 4.3% to 1.33 euros from 1.39 euros last year.

But, consolidated sales for the first nine months of 2020 grew 3.4% to 3.98 billion euros from 3.86 billion euros in the previous year.

Sales growth was slowed by the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. The effects had a particularly negative impact on the Consumer Access and Consumer Applications segments. There were opposing positive effects in the Business Access segment, the company said.

Adjusted for those pandemic effects, like-for-like sales rose by 3.8% on the previous year.

United Internet subsidiary 1&1 Drillisch anticipates lower sales of smartphones and tablets due to a reduced willingness among its existing customers to change tariffs.

Consequently, United Internet lowered its 2020 sales growth guidance to about 3% from the prior outlook of about 4% growth, compared to prior-year sales of 5.19 billion euros.

Annual EBITDA forecast remains unchanged at 1.180 billion euros.