The finance ministers of France, Germany, Italy and Spain have written a joint letter to the European Union's presidency and Commission calling for taxes on tech giants' revenues, not just their profits. The four nations want the Commission to produce an "equalization tax" that would make companies pay the equivalent of the corporate tax in the countries where they earn revenue. France is leading a push to clamp down on the taxation of such companies, but has found support from other countries also frustrated at the low tax they receive under current international rules.
The European Union's highest court on Wednesday backed Intel Corp.'s appeal of a €1.06 billion ($1.26 billion) EU antitrust fine in 2009, referring the case back to a lower court and dealing a blow to an antitrust regulator that has taken a hard line on U.S. tech giants. Intel was fined by the European Commission in 2009 for abusing its monopoly of the computer processor market by bullying manufacturers into purchasing all their chips from Intel instead of rivals. The penalty was the biggest antitrust fine in the Commission’s history until the €2.4bn fine handed to Google this year.
KLM has launched a Whatsapp service for businesses, allowing passengers to receive flight information through the messaging app. The Dutch company has become the first airline out the gates with a presence on Whatsapp Business, a dedicated channel in which companies can reach out to their customers.
Responding to President Vladimir Putin's recent comments on artificial intelligence, Space X and Tesla CEO Elon Musk said on Monday that World War III would likely be triggered by competition for AI. The business magnate’s prediction came in response to Putin’s comments at a meeting with schoolchildren in Yaroslavl on September 1, in which the Russian president said it was important to prevent monopolies in the field, adding that if Russia became the global leader in artificial intelligence, “it will share its technology with the rest of the world, like we are doing now with atomic and nuclear technology.”
Angry Birds maker Rovio will float shares on the Nasdaq Helsinki stock exchange, confirming rumours of an imminent initial public offering (IPO) which emerged last month. The developer of the first mobile game to hit one billion downloads will issue €30m in shares in the Finnish capital, where it is headquartered, it said in a statement.
Hackers have discovered that one of the most central elements of online security, the mobile phone number, is also one of the easiest to steal; and it's is an increasingly growing problem, the New York Times reports. In a growing number of online attacks, hackers have been calling up Verizon, T-Mobile U.S., Sprint and AT&T and asking them to transfer control of a victim’s phone number to a device under the control of the hackers. Once they get control of the phone number, they can reset the passwords on every account that uses the phone number as a security backup — as services like Google, Twitter and Facebook suggest.
Facebook will see a decline among teenagers in the U.S. this year, says market research firm eMarketer. Facebook usage among U.S. users between the ages of 12 and 17 is expected to decline for the first time this year, falling 3.4% from the previous year, according to the research. While this decline gives Snap Inc. a rare edge, as teens are fleeing to its platform, Facebook is still in the game as teens seem to be spending time on its other property, Instagram.
Google and Walmart on Tuesday announced a partnership that would make the retailer's products available on the internet giant's online shopping mall. The two companies said that next month Google would start offering Walmart products to people who shop on Google Express, the company’s online shopping mall. It’s the first time the world’s biggest retailer has made its products available online in the United States outside of its own website.
The sharing of sensitive information has been at the root of many of the scandals facing the financial services industry recently, for example the LIBOR and FX rigging episodes. However, the US’ Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has now marked Wall Street traders as a potential area of focus, given the use of encrypted apps to hide illicit communications. According to reports emerging in the Financial Times, the FBI is becoming increasingly concerned that Wall Street traders have found a way to turn encryption to their advantage when it comes to illegally exchanging insider information.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is throwing itself into the autonomous vehicle race after years of watching its two Detroit rivals vie for leadership — and it’s doing it with formidable partners: BMW Group and Intel Corp. The Italian-American FCA is joining a team of companies that has worked to create a turnkey autonomous driving system. Along with the premium German automaker and the Silicon Valley chipmaker, the partnership also includes Mobileye NV, the Israeli camera and sensor company Intel acquired earlier this year for $15.4 billion.
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