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MARKETING agency employees will lose their jobs across the US as part of a US government plan to cut $600bn from the sector over the next decade.
The US Department of Commerce announced the changes on Wednesday, with the aim of reducing the amount of money spent on digital advertising by 75% to 50% by 2025.
While some of the job losses will be in the marketing industry, the cuts come as the US moves to cut spending on research and development in a bid to reduce the US budget deficit.
Digital advertising has seen a dramatic increase in the past few years, with companies including Google and Facebook spending more than $300bn (£205bn) on the practice in the last two years.
More than one-third of the US’s digital advertising budget was spent on content, with Google and Twitter taking home the lion’s share.
Ahead of the announcement, US president Donald Trump said he would cut the budget for digital advertising, calling it “dismal” and “disgraceful”.
“We are eliminating jobs at digital advertising agencies and will stop spending more money on research in the future,” he said.
“Digital advertising is a waste of money that should not be wasted.
Instead of spending more on research, we should be investing in our companies and our businesses.”
But critics say the cuts will have little impact on the overall digital advertising market.
Companies will be able to continue employing their staff and advertising budgets in other areas of the organisation, but they will not be able make the cuts.
New York-based ad agency firm AdWeek said the cuts were likely to have a detrimental impact on its clients and staff.
Its director of advertising, David DeGrazia, told the Associated Press: “We don’t know how much we’ll lose but it’s going to be a pretty significant cut.”
The agency said its staff were already feeling the impact of the cuts, with staff leaving after a month and finding it difficult to make ends meet.
Many agencies are also looking at their existing advertising budgets to see if they can adapt, according to AdWeek.
The US advertising industry is still struggling with a budget deficit of nearly $300 billion in 2018, according the US Government Accountability Office.