tv Business Briefing BBC News September 5, 2018 5:30am-5:46am BST
this is the business briefing. i'm sally bundock. tech giants pepare to face up to the us senate, as there are more concerns over the role of social media in spreading of political propaganda during elections. first apple, now amazon. the online retail giant becomes the world's second company to be worth $1 trillion and launches a new hindi language service for india. and on the markets, concerns about contagion and the vulnerability of emerging market currencies, the south african rand and indonesia's rupiah among the latest victims. in the us... the 2018 mid—term elections are less than two months away, and the us government
is keen to knowjust what the big tech companies are doing to ensure their platforms won't be manipulated by foreign governments. senior executives from twitter and facebook will answer questions from the senate intelligence committee later today. facebook‘s chief operating officer, sheryl sandberg, will say the social media giant has already disabled almost $1.3 billion fake accounts, a staggering sum, and the firm has doubled the number of people it has working to combat misinformation on the site. meanwhile, twitter‘s chief executive, jack dorsey, is likely to address concerns over censorship. he says that twitter does not use political ideology to make decisions in terms of how content is ranked on the site. but what about the other big player in all of this, google? the committee also invited google to take part, but instead of sending along larry page, the firm has decided to supply a written testimony to the hearing.
this is expected to be the most anticipated hearing on technology since april when facebook‘s chief executive, mark zuckerberg, testified before two congressional committees. here he is arguing that social media firms need to take more responsibility for what happens on their sites. but it's clear now that we didn't do enough to prevent these tools from being used for harm as well and that goes forfake being used for harm as well and that goes for fake news, being used for harm as well and that goes forfake news, foreign interference in elections and hate speech, as well as developers and data privacy. we didn't take a broad enough view of our responsibility, and that was a big mistake, and it was my mistake, and i'm sorry. i started facebook, i run it, and i'm responsible for what happens here. james erskine is the director of the marketing firm social circle. nice to see you, james.
nice to see you, james. hello. that's what it's going to be like later, the likes of sheryl sandberg, jack dorsey and others having to a nswer jack dorsey and others having to answer quite difficult questions on the mid—term elections not far off at all, give us your thoughts on the day ahead. there's a real moment we re day ahead. there's a real moment were no longer these big tech and social media platforms are brushing these things off. there's an admission these things have to change and that started about two yea rs change and that started about two years ago when, as you said, a number of fake accounts were cold and there were new tools and people brought to the table to ensure this doesn't happen again. the reason it happened in the first place i think is one of regulation, because it's almost impossible to regulate this space for a number of reasons. social drives are just that, giants. though go across so many different borders and they also go across and so borders and they also go across and so many different platforms —— social giants are just that, giants.
it is tough to get the right level of regulation that works across territory and the different platforms. are they fighting a losing battle? we have said that facebook has said they have removed oi’ facebook has said they have removed or taken down something like 1.3 billion fake accounts, that's an enormous number. like you say, how do you police this and therefore, do we have to accept the fact there's manipulation and it can't be stopped? i think if you look at the different social media platforms as bad, platforms, then i think there has began element of responsibility in the user and that's where there's a sense of responsibility with every person along the chain —— as that. there's a responsibility for the user, the platforms and the brands and advertisers working on the platform as well. yes, there's an element of self policing. we hear it from both sides. we have the people creating the content to go on the platforms, and we hear about the brands wanting to promote their own
content. there's a fair amount of ignorance of the details of the rules in that regulation. and then, as far as burglary is different platforms go, and can they be stopped, if you can micro— target, and you can, there's always an opportunity to mobilise a small section which will then start that kind of social wave on various different social platforms. james, thank you for now. there's so much more to unpack and discussed but we haven't got the time at the moment, we will have to move on but we'll carry on the conversation and we will tell you on bbc how the day has gone for the likes of twitter, facebook and others before us politicians. let's discuss amazon. amazon has done it. the e—commerce giant become the second us—listed firm to have a market value of a $1 trillion. it's shares rose nearly 2% to a high of $2,050.50 in morning trade before slipping back. apple reached the same milestone in early august. for more on the story, kim gittleson reports from new york. the $1 trillion milestone is all
them or a mark of all because for them or a mark of all because for the nearly two decades that amazon has spent as a public company, it generally reported losses or negligible profits —— is all the more remarkable. as of this week, jeff bezos's strategy seems to have paid off. for amazon, frankly the future seems quite bright, that's because even more so than the other trillion dollar company, apple, of course, amazon's business is geared towards the future of how we will live both online and off—line. even though the company generates a significant amount of e—commerce sales, nearly 50% of every dollar that americans spend online goes to
amazon, when it comes to e—commerce, it's only 10% of overall retail spending here in the united states, and that's something analysts say will certainly grow in the future. also, amazon's web services business is continuing to generate record profits. that's the bit of a company that allows you to host a website using its cloud compute in software. all of this combined means that when you think about the best word to describe amazon's surging share price, well, it's probably the name jeff bezos first thought he would name the company, relentless. absolutely. kim gittleson. it seems amazon is relentless in the sense it wa nts to amazon is relentless in the sense it wants to make sure it keeps its global competitive edge. today, it launched a hindi version of its mobile website and app for android smartphones in a bid to make deeper inroads into india's fast—growing e—commerce market and step up its battle with walmart‘s flipkart. i'm joined now by my colleague bbc business correspondent sameer
hashmi. tell us, sameer, how is this going to help amazon in expanding its market share in india? well, sally, for amazon the timing couldn't have been better because they're launching this as they hit the $1 trillion valuation. india is one of the fastest—growing markets when it comes to e—commerce. for amazon, it's a very significant market. if you look, they're in a tight race with walmart‘s flipkart. looking at the indian e—commerce market, only 10%... looking at india as a country, 10% of the population speaks and understands english. but if you talk about hindi, one of the main official languages here, nearly 40% of the people can understand and speak hindi, and that's exactly what amazon are going for. they feel the next 100 million customers in india will come from the regional market,
and that's what they're aiming for. it's not going to be easy, companies have tried that in the past and it hasn't worked, clearly they see the next big push coming from this side and that's what they're aiming for. that's why they're rolling this out and it will be interesting to see how this pans out, because india is going to hit $40 billion over the next two or three years. all eyes will be on how this rolls out. absolutely, car—tjo sameer, we will see how that happens. —— absolutely, car-t. -- see how that happens. —— absolutely, car—t. —— absolutely sameer. all this week, we're looking at some of latin america's new tech startups. brazil has free, universal healthcare, but the system is very overcrowded. wealthy brazilians can afford private care, but 155 million people are left without cover. a group of entrepreneurs decided to create a cheaper alternative the imf says progress has been made to solve argentina's currency crisis after a meeting in washington. the south american country is seeking advanced payments of a $50 billion loan to use it against a run on its national currency, the peso. but neither side has commented on how much money might be released or how soon a deal
should be reached. the former bank of england governor, lord king, has blasted brexit preparations as incompetent. the brexit supporter said it beggared belief that the world's sixth—biggest economy should be talking of stockpiling food and medicines. he said this left the government without a credible bargaining position. that's it for the business briefing this hour, but before we go, here are the markets. asi as i mentioned, all about the emerging market currencies. the indonesian rupiah falling again today. it's been sliding for several daysin today. it's been sliding for several days in a row. the south african rand extremely weak as well. this is about concerns the weakness we are seeing with the turkish lira and argentine pesto with rates possibly going up in the us in september, this is exacerbating foreign money being pulled out of these emerging economies and back into places like the us —— argentina peso. that's all for now business stories. back in a moment. in the uk:
a deal has been struck to let the nhs offer children an expensive new cancer therapy that has been called the most exciting treatment advance for decades. car—t is a cutting—edge treatment for aggressive leukaemia when other drugs have failed but usually costs hundreds of thousands of pounds per patient. hospitals could start giving it to a small number of children within weeks. here's our health correspondent, dominic hughes. leukaemia is a form of blood cancer, and in most cases is highly treatable. but some patients don't respond, so researchers have been looking at the potential for individualised therapy is. this is cutting—edge science, and it's expensive. but within a few weeks, via the nhs in england, it could be available to up to 30 children and young people who otherwise have run
out of treatment options. nhs patients are the first in europe to get this new treatment, and because we're on the beginning of a new era of personalised medicine where cells from your own body are being reprogrammed to provide treatments that previously untreatable conditions. this is how the blood cancer treatment works. a blood sample is removed from the patient and then immune cells known as t cells are taken from the blood. visa then modified and ——... they are then injected back into the patient. it's the first time this kind of therapy is going to be used in the nhs and in europe. for people... for children with blood cancer it's going to make a huge difference for them, but we can expect to see this kind of therapy be rolled out in blood cancers and other types of cancers over the next few years. this announcement marks a big step forward for a form of therapy that many believe is game changing. after years of promise,
personalised medicine is becoming a major weapon in the fight against cancer. dominic hughes, bbc news. this is the briefing from bbc news. the latest headlines: research led by the world health organisation finds a quarter of all adults don't take regular exercise and could end up with heart disease and cancer. —— world health organization. the united nations has called on russia and turkey to act urgently to avert bloodshed in the rebel—held syrian province of idlib. explosive revelations about president trump's white house in an investigation by veteran journalist bob woodward. his book portrays an administration having a nervous breakdown. now it's time to look at the stories that are making the headlines. we start with an exclusive in the city am,
this is a financial paper on offer here in london. it talks about former brexit minister david davis backing a new free trade alternative to the government's brexit strategy. the business pages of the guardian now, it looks at amazon becoming the second company, behind apple, to be worth $1 trillion in valuation. it shows how the share price has rocketed in recent years. fox news covers the revelations from the latest book about the trump administration. its headline highlights the white house's rebuttals, but it does mention some of the most shocking claims and points out it's from a veteran political reporter. that's bob woodward, of course. to one of the big stories in the financial times now, and it says japanese pm shinzo abe's looking to up the retirement age.
it'll go from 65 to 70 in a bid to help the country's coffers. and then the times looks at people in the uk above 70 are smarter in september. over 70s fare better in intelligence tests in the autumn. the paper looks at some of the possible reasons. with me is david buik, who's a market commentator at core spreads. he was chuckling during that story. i'm going to have to answer for myself. you are very on the ball always, even at ibm the morning. let's look at city am, looking at the former brexit secretary david davis, it says he is fully poised to