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Bridgewater Hires Poker Star

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Vanessa Selbst, the world’s most successful female poker player, has joined Bridgewater Associates.

Editor’s Remarks: Over the past 12 years, Selbst has won $11.9m playing poker and now, aged 33, she is changing careers. She has joined Bridgewater Associates, the world’s largest hedge fund with over $160bn under management. Her role, which she actually took up over four months ago, focuses on trading research and strategy. Although she has not made any formal comment, Selbst posted on Facebook that her role felt “a lot like poker did back in the day — a bunch of nerdy kids collaborating to beat our opponents”. Ray Dalio’s latest star hire is not just a poker ace, however; she graduated from Yale before joining McKinsey and later completed a law degree also at Yale.

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Companies

Tencent Extends Facebook Lead

Tencent Facebook

Tencent has shot past Facebook to become the world’s most valuable social network.

Editor’s Remarks: Although Tencent briefly overtook Facebook in terms of market cap in November, the recent selloff of Facebook shares prompted the Chinese tech titan to regain the lead. Facebook investors responded negatively to news that Mark Zuckerberg’s plans to highlight family and friend-based content on the newsfeed would reduce the amount of time people spent on the site. Shares in Facebook have fallen 5% since that announcement, enabling Tencent to gain a $19bn lead over the US company. Tencent’s growth has been spurred on by its diversification away from its flagship messaging app, WeChat, and into video games.

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Apple Returns Overseas Cash

Apple overseas cash

Apple has agreed to invest $30bn in the US and pay $38bn in tax to the government. 

Editor’s Remarks: The tech giant announced that it will repatriate hundreds of billions of dollars that it currently holds in various offshore accounts. A total of $38bn in tax will be paid by the company on the sum, with a further $30bn pledged towards domestic jobs, manufacturing and data centres. The capital expenditures will be rolled out over the next five years and are estimated to create around 20,000 jobs. On the news, Apple’s share price rose 1.7% as it was widely perceived that the move would reduce the flak the company has recently been receiving for its tax avoidance schemes.

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Saved: Emirates Places Order for Airbus A380

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airbus emirates

The Dubai-based airline, Emirates, has announced an order for 36 A380s worth $16bn, saving the superjumbo after Airbus threatened to stop production. The deal places a firm order for 20 planes with the option of ordering another 16. Deliveries are scheduled for 2020.

The two-decked superjumbo has faced declining sales as more airlines opt for smaller, cheaper aircraft.deal is said to be worth $1.6bn. Emirates is by far Airbus’ largest customer, with Thursday’s order taking their commitment to 178 aircraft.

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