It feels bad. But really, we're in an OK place. Wages are up. Inflation is generally a pretty good sign, but it's not necessarily good for a market that's been living off of, basically, everyone being nervous about it going down. Greer: Speaking of turbulence, and, Jason, speaking of headlines that beg questions, we have some high-tech intrigue with Chinese tech giant Huawei. Bill, the arrest came at the request of the United States. She's now facing extradition to the U. We don't know specifics, but reports are that she violated sanctions against Iran.
What does it all mean for investors? China has a program called China It basically is China's program to get itself weaned off of Western technology. Huawei is at the very, very center of it.
This is a massive story. The stock sold off huge all over Asia. This has to do specifically with Huawei breaking the U. A couple of weeks ago, Trump came out and asked our allies to stop using Huawei equipment. There's all the tariff negotiations that are going on now. A lot of people believe that this has something to do with that.
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I'm not sure that the two are directly linked, but it's definitely linked in this way: We're no longer letting China get away with things. A lot of U. Claro, Broadcom , Amphenol , there's a lot of big companies that have substantial revenues that go specifically to Huawei. So it's a big deal. Greer: If I'm a U. It sounds like the ripples, especially if it feeds into a U. Mann: Yeah. That's really it. And there's really no information now that suggests that this is a direct link, although to the trade war, the timing is somewhat amazing, the fact that it happened the same exact day that President Trump was meeting with Prime Minister Xi.
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It puts a whole lot more pressure on China. One thing that people maybe don't understand is just how much worse the trade war is for China than it is for the United States. And I think one thing that will happen from this is that China is going to press a whole lot faster to quit being dependent on any Western technologies. We have to talk Kroger, right, Jason? We don't have to talk Kroger. Moser: When you say "exciting," I immediately go to Publix.
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That's a concept near and dear to both of our hearts. Greer: Publix is great. I love Publix, but I have to say, if you haven't gotten into Kroger lately, they're really nice. And I'm not just saying that because you can mix and match your own six-pack with craft beer. I mean, that may influence my thinking a bit. But back to the story here. Kroger reporting better-than-expected earnings and revenue.
The stock down today, Jason, but, you know. Moser: Remember a little bit more than a year ago, we were having a conversation as to whether the Amazon acquisition of Whole Foods was going to be a Kroger killer. I already knew at the time that it wouldn't be, and I think that's proven to be the case. The one thing to remember with grocery stores, regardless of the economic climate, it's a difficult space in which to operate because it's such a low-margin game.
It really is all about being that low-cost provider in a lot of cases. And now, on top of that, you have to meet your customer on more fronts. It's not always about just going to the grocery store. You have to be able to get those groceries to the customer. And thankfully for Kroger's sake, they're doing stuff like that. I found it interesting in the release, the CEO, Rodney McMullen said, "We're moving away from being a traditional grocer to being a growth company.
Moser: The top line was essentially flat from a year ago. But I understand the sentiment. Do you think Moser: Last I heard, growth companies did grow for a living. But with that said, they are offering more services to their consumers. They're doing very well on the digital front. Sixty percent growth for the quarter.
They developed a very compelling private-label brand called the Our Brands line. That continues to take more and more share at their stores as folks look for those lower costs to their grocery bill. All in all, I think they're doing a lot of the right things. It's just understanding what you're getting into before you get into it. If you're going to invest in a grocery concept, you're going to invest in a company that is not going to be growing a whole heck of a lot, no matter what the CEO says. It's a difficult environment! But certainly, Kroger is utilizing their scale to navigate the waters quite coolly.
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Mann: Yeah, that's right. The grocery industry is basically a knife fight. This is an industry where basically any gains that you get come at the expense of one of your competitors. The irrational and poor competitors are much smaller component of the industry than they used to be. It was a pretty good quarter for Kroger.
And Kroger is a company that I've been negative on for quite some time, just because of the factors in the grocery industry and Amazon coming in with the Whole Foods acquisition. I am pretty intrigued by their teaming up with Walgreens. They're offering a lot of their products through Walgreens, a new project that they have where you can order online and pick up your groceries at a Walgreens. They are looking at new ways to get that distribution outside of just the domestic arena here. That's admirable. But I think Bill hit the nail on the head.
It's such a tough concept. Everybody's gunning to be that low-cost provider, which, of course, plays out on profitability.
Regardless of what the CEO says Just be aware. Greer: Guys, let's wrap up with our final story -- Netflix paying big, big money to keep the TV show Friends through That was their announcement. Greer: And that's a reference to one of their episodes, right? I confess that I did not watch Friends a lot. And by "a lot," I mean ever, really. Jason and I were talking before we were taping; my girls watch Friends incessantly. It's on in our house all the time.
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Netflix doesn't break out its data on usage by program, but this is a big, big deal for them, and will remain so. Greer: It aired originally from to So it hasn't been on network for 15 years or so. Greer: Now, I was talking to a colleague of ours, and I was a little skeptical. I told her something to the effect of, I thought Friends was the most overrated show in television history.
You know, just some mild statement like that. And I was taking issue with this, and she basically said, "I think you're missing it. It has huge appeal to millennials.
Moser: We've just clearly hit the age where nobody can come up with a good idea. It seems like they're rebooting everything, and the reboots always suck. Moser: No! I'm apathetic when it comes to Friends.