Interesting Articles from the Week:
Apple, Google and a Deal That Controls the Internet: Apple now receives an estimated $8 billion to $12 billion in annual payments — up from $1 billion a year in 2014 — in exchange for building Google’s search engine into its products. It is probably the single biggest payment that Google makes to anyone and accounts for 14 to 21 percent of Apple’s annual profits.
Charting 20 Years of Home Price Changes in Every U.S. City: At the turn of the century, the average U.S. home value was $126,000. Today, that figure is at a record high $259,000 – a 106% increase in just two decades.
Netflix hikes monthly charges for US subscribers: Netflix has hiked monthly charges for its most popular standard plan to $14 and its premium tier to $18 in the United States, the streaming giant said on Thursday.
What I’m reading
Greenlights by Matthew McConaughey – I can’t express enough how much I enjoyed this book. The definition of “cool” in the dictionary should just say, Matthew McConaughey.
While entertaining/insightful, I also learned about the acting side of the film industry.
To Pixar and Beyond by Lawrence Levy – This was an inspiring read about Steve Jobs building Pixar from a small, money-losing studio into something that changed the entire industry. At the time of Steve’s death, most of his wealth was the result of the work he did at Pixar, which, in the end, was acquired by Disney.
Entertainment Industry Economics by Harold L. Vogel – I came across this title when I was reading To Pixar and Beyond.
In 1994, Lawrence Levy received a call out of the blue from Steve Jobs to see if Lawrence had any interest in joining Pixar as CFO. Lawrence agreed to join, only to realize that he knew absolutely nothing about how movies made money. To learn about the economics of the industry, he purchased the book I am now reading. So far, I am enjoying it.
The Hollywood Studio System, A History by Douglas Gomery – As the title says, this book provides a background on the movie industry from the early days of Adolph Zuker at Paramount Pictures in 1920, all the way to the second film revolution with Lew Wasserman of Universal Studios in the 1960s.
Although this book was very informative about the pioneers in the industry, I felt like it was super dry at times and required extra effort from me to push through to the end. I’m glad I did, though.
The Psychology of Money: Timeless lessons on wealth, greed, and happiness by Morgan Housel – This book is unequivocally one of the best books I have read in 2020. If you have not read Morgan’s book yet, be sure to add it to your batting order.
It will not surprise me if this book is referenced as a must-read on finance and money for decades to come.