6 Most Important Things in Business Today

According to several media reports, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) will spend approximately $1 billion to acquire outside content for its media distribution businesses such as Apple TV.

The value of home equity in the United States continues to rise:

ATTOM Data Solutions, curator of the nation’s largest multi-sourced property database, today released its Q2 2017 U.S. Home Equity & Underwater Report, which shows that at the end of the second quarter of 2017 there were more than 14 million (14,038,372) U.S. properties that were equity rich — where the combined loan amount secured by the property was 50 percent or less of the estimated market value of the property — up by nearly 320,000 properties from the previous quarter and up by more than 1.6 million properties from a year ago.

The 14 million equity rich U.S. properties represented 24.6 percent of all U.S. properties with a mortgage, up from 24.3 percent in the previous quarter and up from 22.1 percent in Q2 2016.

Nokia will release a new smartphone into an already crowded sector. According to Bloomberg:

Finnish company HMD Global Oy unveiled its latest Nokia-branded smartphone in a first bid to win over Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and Apple Inc. customers.

The Nokia 8 will be available in September and will retail for a global average price of 599 euros ($703), HMD said Wednesday.

Apple and Samsung dominate smartphone sales in most regions outside China.

In a letter to employees, Apple CEO Tim Cook took issue with the president’s comments on violent neo-Nazi activities. According to Recode:

Apple CEO Tim Cook on Wednesday called for an “unequivocal” denouncement of the recent neo-Nazi demonstration in Charlottesville, Virginia, stressing he disagreed with comments by President Donald Trump that attributed the violence there to “many sides” — and not white supremacists.

In a note to Apple’s employees, obtained Wednesday night by Recode, Cook also announced the company would donate $1 million each to the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League.

Apple plans to match its employees donations to human rights groups — on a 2-for-1 basis — until Sept 30, while setting up a new system in iTunes, its music software, to “offer users an easy way to join us in directly supporting the work of the SPLC,” Cook said.

A huge Powerball jackpot has grown. According to CNNMoney:

After Wednesday night’s Powerball drawing yielded no jackpot winners, the prize climbed from $430 million to a gargantuan $510 million.

The numbers drawn Wednesday were 9, 15, 43, 60, 64 and the Powerball was 4.

The grand prize pool has been growing since June 10 — meaning there have been 19 straight drawings with no winner.

The current jackpot would be the 8th largest U.S. lottery prize of all time. That includes jackpots from past Powerball and Mega Millions games, the two largest nationwide lotteries. As it stands, the jackpot would be the 9th biggest Powerball prize in history.

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