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Today in the Market (10/12/2023)

Good Evening! On Thursday, the stock market declined, thus ending a consecutive four-day period of gains. This downward trend was influenced by the rise in bond rates and the analysis of the inflation report.

The S&P 500 and NASDAQ closed the day falling by roughly the same amount of 0.62%, while the Dow Jones fell by 0.51%.

ANOTHER PRICE INCREASE...

Disney (DIS) increased pricing for its streaming services, a move that reflects the ongoing struggle the business has in achieving profitability in the direct-to-consumer market and the decline in its subscriber base. The company’s ad-free Disney+ and Hulu plans, as well as its Hulu live TV bundles and ESPN+ subscription, are affected by the second price rise of the year. So how much is each subscription increasing?

  • Disney+ ad-free plan: $13.99 (new price) vs. $10.99 (old price)
  • Hulu ad-free plan: $17.99 (new price) vs. $14.99 (old price)
  • Hulu Live TV package: Increased by $7
  • ESPN+: $10.99 (new price) vs. $9.99 (old price)

Besides increasing prices, is Disney doing anything else to buttress financial results? CEO Bob Iger has made a commitment to implement various new initiatives aimed at reorganizing the business. These initiatives include the decision to sell Disney’s linear assets and the search for a strategy for ESPN’s streaming service. Furthermore, Disney has established a strategic alliance with Penn Entertainment, a prominent sports gambling organization, and has lately implemented price hikes for its theme parks.

WHAT IS SCARIER THAN INFLATION?

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It is a spooky season, but the Consumer Price Index for candy has not spooked consumers yet. There has been an approximate increase of 3% in the prices of various candy items as compared to the previous year. On top of that, the cost of sugar and sugar alternatives went up 7.7% compared to a year earlier, while sweets and chewing gum gained 7.5%

What is driving costs higher? The sugar futures market has seen a significant increase of 40% compared to last year. Another contributing factor to the price increase is the rising cost of cocoa. Cocoa futures have seen a significant increase of 46%.

However, if you think the amount of good candy will decrease, then worry not! It is projected that the expenditure on candy by consumers will reach $3.6 billion this year, reflecting a substantial increase of almost 14% compared to the previous year’s total of $3.1 billion. Thus, making this year the highest record value to date according to the National Retail Federation.

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