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Tech start-ups in Europe are trying to help migrants

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“It seems that a big part of the solution is that we have been targeting asylum seekers and refugees in the very early stage just after they arrive to the country.”

She added that Match Made is also scalable and can be used internationally as well. She said they have had a lot of interest from other European countries.

Elsewhere, Finnish start-up Funzi has set up a Program for Migrant Integration where projects have been implemented with several partners. These are in the form of mobile services, like courses tailored for asylum seekers in Finland, to help enhance integration. It said its mobile course About Country had more than 20,000 users in the country.

The start-up has also helped provide migrants with learning support through its “microMBA” project. It had 70 migrants apply for the program and 40 were selected. The company, which attended the tech event Slush in Helsinki this week, said it was holding a side-event called Splush, to discuss more “Peacetech” solutions.

Over in Copenhagen, Denmark, Refunite is a missing persons platform for refugees and displaced populations. It says on its website that it has more than 1 million registered users.

It helps displaced people, who have lost contact with family members and friends in their escape from conflicts, to reconnect via a global database. Countries with Refunite mobile projects include Canada, China, France, Austria, Sweden, Australia, and Belgium.

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Don’t expect Apple or Amazon to buy Tesla: Morgan Stanley’s Adam Jonas

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Elon Musk

Mike Blake | Reuters

In an invitation-only call with institutional clients of Morgan Stanley on Wednesday, research analyst Adam Jonas — a long-time Tesla bull — expressed skepticism about the electric vehicle maker and said not to count on a buyer like Apple to bail the company out.

“Tesla is not really seen as a growth story,” Jonas said on the call, which CNBC heard in a recording. Today, “It seems like a distressed credit and restructuring story.”

Some details of the call were previously reported by Business Insider.

Jonas spent some time on the call responding to the hope that a big tech company like Apple or Amazon might buy Tesla. in a CNBC interview on Tuesday, analyst Craig Irwin of Roth Capital Partners rekindled the rumor that Apple once made a bid for Tesla.

But Jonas poured cold water on the notion of a big tech acquisition today.

He explained, “For risk mitigation and liability containment, they may not want to expose themselves to the unlimited liability of being involved in owning a business where occasionally a car catches on fire, takes down a building, or accidentally kills a pedestrian or passenger, things that happen. The auto industry has an ugly side to it. The roads are very dangerous. There’s a lot of stored energy in a vehicle. And the regulatory environment [around autonomous cars] has not had time to cure yet.”

Jonas acknowledged that Apple has interest in transportation (as do Amazon and other big tech firms). But Morgan Stanley’s tech researchers, he said, don’t expect Apple to have a service or related hardware devoted entirely to transportation until the 2030s.

He added, “Perhaps those big tech firms don’t want to expose themselves to that up front. And moreover they realize the autonomous race is more of a marathon where over a 10- or 20-year period you collect real world miles. There may be other ways to do that besides owning a full-stack, awesome, great auto company.”

SpaceX to the rescue?

Apart from shooting down the idea of a white knight, Jonas also expressed skepticism about the company’s current state.

“In late 2018, demand was exceeding supply, cash flow was strong, there was a ton of excitement around the Model Y,” Jonas said. “Today — supply exceeds demand, they are burning cash, nobody cares about the Model Y.”

Finally, Jonas told investors that, given the precedent of Tesla’s acquisition of SolarCity, there’s a possibility Musk could use his 54% stake in SpaceX, a company that has a post-money valuation of $31.5 billion, to eventually collateralize Tesla.

“There’s a precedent for Elon Musk to think across his portfolio of companies,” he said.

Jonas said near-term, Wall Street is expecting Tesla to deliver just 70,000 vehicles in the second quarter of 2019. While he and Morgan Stanley have a more optimistic estimate of 82,000 vehicles, that still falls short of Tesla guidance. The company said it would deliver 90,000 cars this quarter, and wrote in a first-quarter shareholder letter:

“Although we are driving towards higher internal goals, we reaffirm our prior guidance of 360,000 to 400,000 vehicle deliveries in 2019, representing an increase of approximately 45% to 65% compared to 2018.”

Tesla and Morgan Stanley did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the call.

Morgan Stanley was a lead underwriter in Tesla’s $2.7 billion offering of stock and convertible notes, which closed earlier this month. The week of the offering, Morgan Stanley said it saw the funding as a 12-month bridge to help the company gain a foothold in China.

Tesla’s stock is down 15% since last Thursday, and dropped 6% on Wednesday to under $193. The slide began last week after an e-mail surfaced in which Tesla CEO Elon Musk urged employees to cut spending and told them he would personally oversee outgoing expenses.

That news was followed by a bad Consumer Reports review of Tesla’s new Autopilot Navigate feature in its Model 3 electric sedans. The stock may also be reacting to ongoing trade tensions between the US and China, as Tesla has staked its future on building and selling its cars there.

WATCH: Morgan Stanley says Tesla could hit $10 if this happens

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UBS cuts Apple price target on smartphone slowdown, trade war

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Slowing iPhone demand, trade war headwinds and possible ripple effects from a Huawei battle don’t bode well for Apple, according to a UBS analyst.

The Swiss bank cut its 12-month price target on the iPhone maker to $225 — down from a previous $235. Apple closed at $186 Thursday.

UBS still has a “buy” rating on the stock but cited evidence from a survey of 8,000 people across six countries that suggests consumers are in no rush to upgrade their phones. For iPhones specifically, “purchase intention” looked to be stabilizing at a low level in all regions except China, UBS analyst Timothy Arcuri said in a note to clients Wednesday.

“We believe a slightly lower multiple is prudent given soft smartphone market and ongoing US/China trade issues,” Arcuri said.

Apple shares have taken a beating in May as Washington and Beijing remain locked in a stalemate on trade. Shares are down 7% for the month, as of Tuesday’s close. The U.S. raised tariffs to 25% on $200 billions worth of Chinese goods earlier in May, and China retaliated by upping levies on $60 billion worth of U.S. imports.

Most of Apple’s supply chain is in mainland China, including the iPhone’s final assembly by Foxconn. Apple’s China business accounted for more than $10 billion — more than 17% of sales — in its fiscal second quarter.

Arcuri also said the “Huawei situation” could indirectly impact Apple. On Thursday, the Wall Street Journal reported that a microchip company backed by Microsoft and Dell accused Chinese tech giant Huawei and one of its executives of stealing trade secrets. Last week, the U.S. Department of Commerce added the company to Entity List — meaning American companies would need a license to work with Huawei.

“Apple is not directly impacted, but relaxation of some sort is possible,” Arcuri said. “Negotiations between US/China are ongoing and an extension has been granted for some critical items, but we do think a nationalistic movement – similar to the one we saw at the time of the arrest of Huawei’s CFO in November – seems quite probable and would impact iPhone sales.”

UBS isn’t the only one cautious on Apple. Earlier on Thursday, Goldman Sachs analyst Rod Hall said in a note to clients that Apple earnings could drop 29% if the company’s products were banned in mainland China.

To be sure, Arcuri said Apple would likely rebound in the event those headwinds ease.

“After a year that is impacted by China demand slowdown and elongating replacement cycles, we think iPhones can grow as these headwinds abate,” Arcuri said.

— CNBC’s Fred Imbert contributed reporting.

WATCH: As the US plays hardball with China, Stephen Roach warns odds of a trade deal are ‘rapidly receding’ 

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Putin, Trump want to weaken EU: Katainen

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There is at least one thing in common between the U.S. and Russia — their willingness to weaken the European Union, a high-ranking European official told CNBC.

As European voters prepare to head to the polls later this week and choose new lawmakers to the European Parliament, there is a lot of debate about the challenges within the 28-member union. However, Jyrki Katainen, vice president of the European Commission told CNBC Tuesday that the external challenges have never been so hard.

“Countries like Russia, China but also the United States have challenged us harder than before,” Katainen said in Brussels.

“We are (for the) first time in the history in a situation where the President of the United States and (the) President of Russia seem to share the same view on Europe: the weaker, the better, because they think that it’s better for their own country, which is obviously not right,” Katainen, who is also the former prime minister of Finland said.

The transatlantic relationship has been particularly challenging for the EU since President Trump came into power in 2016. Their differences have been clear on issues such as climate change and trade.

President Donald Trump and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin attend a joint press conference after a meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, on July 16, 2018. 

Brendan Smialowski | AFP | Getty Images

But the EU’s relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin is yet another challenge.

The EU has essentially been at odds with Russia, particularly since 2014, when Moscow annexed Crimea and the 28-member bloc decided to impose sanctions against the Kremlin.

According to Katainen, Russia is also responsible for boosting some populist parties, which are shaking the EU and represent an internal challenge.

“The EU is also challenged from within,” Katainen said in reference to the nationalist rhetoric surging across the EU.

“(These parties) want to weaken and fragment the EU – and some of those have also very close connection to Russia, to President Putin. So Russia has obviously financed some of those parties, they have interfered to our democratic processes, for instance referenda or national elections in order to weaken the EU, in order to create division between the people inside the country,” he said, describing this issue as “very dangerous.”

In Austria, the European elections have been clouded by a scandal involving the country’s deputy prime minister. Heinz-Christian Strache, leader of the far-right Freedom Party, was forced to resign after a video showed him proposing government contracts to a supposed Russian oligarch’s niece.

Opinion polls have suggested that nationalist parties could gain as much as 30% of seats in the European Parliament after this week’s election.

However, Katainen sounded relieved that despite their growing size in EU politics, the majority in the European Parliament and most European governments are still pro-EU.

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