Facebook Would Like to Like China, Coca Cola Getting Buzzed Over Keurig and Extra Credit Mortgages

Facebook headed in new directions?

Image courtesy of Master isolated images/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Master isolated images/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Facebook is headed east. At least it wants to head east. Far east. The social media giant is looking to set up shop in Beijing but there is one slight hitch – Facebook is currently censored in China and has been for the past several years (as are Google and Twitter). Minor details, I suppose. Interestingly enough, though, Facebook still managed to make more than a few bucks in China by selling ads. The country currently has the largest amount of web users, coming in at a mind-numbing 600 million, yet it remains one of the last big markets that doesn’t enjoy all those FB perks. And while Facebook would be all too eager to tap in to that population, it did diplomatically say there are “substantial legal and regulatory complexities.” But tons of companies in China also want Facebook for the opportunities it provides to reach international users. Despite China’s Facebook ban, the company still managed to make $354 million in Asia which translated to roughly 19% of its first quarter revenue.

The buzz at Coca Cola…

Image courtesy of Paul/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Paul/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

As more and more people are looking to kick sodas from their diets, Coca Cola (KO) figured now is the time to up its stake in Keurig Green Mountain (GMCR) from 10% to 16%. Because the soda company recognized “substantial growth potential” it went ahead and scooped up close to 26 million shares. Now the beverage company best known for its tasty assortment of soft drinks has now became the largest shareholder in a company best known for its coffee and single cup brewing system. Coca Cola has used this play in the past when it ultimately bought out entire companies, including Zico Coconut Water and Honest Tea. In keeping with the spirit of icy cold Coca Cola, Keurig is planning to introduce a frosty single cup drink.

To your credit…

Image courtesy of renjith krishnan/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of renjith krishnan/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Government-owned Freddie Mac (FMCC) and Fannie Mae (FNMA) once upon a time received a $187 billion bailout courtesy of taxpayers. Freddie and Fannie are actually now cranking out record profits for the US treasury, having paid back all that taxpayer money (not that I saw any of it in my bank account). Now the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) overseeing the two companies (who guarantee about half of all mortgages) want potential homeowners/borrowers to get more credit. A far cry from last year when FHFA wanted to instead reduce the credit Freddie and Fannie (as those in the know call them) were offering. A move like that could drastically harm the housing finance market so the plans were scrapped. Now even if a borrower skips two payments in the first three years of the loan, Freddie and Fannie will still back those loans. There is now also a foreclosure relief project in the wings. However, the Senate Banking Committee is voting on a bill - with bi-partisan support - that would phase out Freddie and Fannie and let private lenders assume the risk instead.

 

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