WFH- Boss Enjoys More; Saudis Price Up Asian Oil; Samsung’s Fat Profits; LG Exits Smartphones

A lot has been made of surveys showing how the hybrid of work from home and office is great. Zdnet.com found in a study Microsoft did that it depends. Apparently, it’s working great for bosses. For the rest of us…maybe not so much. Redmond found 52% of the company’s IMs were being sent between 6pm and midnight. Sixty-one percent of leaders described themselves as “thriving.” However… that those who don’t make the decisions are thriving 23 points less than their bosses! 

The Saudis think the economy is improving. Aramco, the Saudi state energy firm, will increase its grades for Asia in May by between 20 and 50 cents a barrel. It will raise the key Arab Light grade for the region by 40 cents from April to $1.80 per barrel above the benchmark. The company had been expected to hike the grade by 30 cents, according to a Bloomberg survey of eight traders and refiners. Western Europe is flat, Saudi exports to the US are down a dime. 

Samsung Electronics likely saw a 45% jump in profit for January through March on robust sales of smartphones, TVs and home appliances, though chip division earnings are seen tumbling after a storm suspended production at its U.S. plant. Reuters says its attributed to spending more time at home due to the coronavirus pandemic. Consumers have splurged on an array of high-margin consumer electronics which in turn has helped cause a global shortage of semiconductors. Samsung is scheduled to officially announce preliminary first-quarter results on Wednesday. 

LG said on Monday it will close its loss-making mobile phone business worldwide as the once pioneer brand looks to focus its resources in “growth areas” such as electric vehicle components, connected devices, smart homes, robotics, AI and B2B solutions, and platforms and services. Techcrunch.com reports that the South Korean firm said in a statement that its board of directors approved the decision today. LG, which maintained No. 3 spot in the smartphone market in the U.S. for a long time, said it will continue to sell handsets until the inventory lasts.



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