They run everything from auto makers to social media companies, big banks, big tech and big oil. They are the corporate heads whose actions, actions and opinions are echoing through these financial markets. Meet the 14 CEOs on MarketWatch 50’s list of the most influential people in the market.
Mary Barra has largely driven GM towards electric and autonomous vehicles. His plan calls on the legacy auto maker to sell only zero-emissions vehicles by 2035. To do so, the company is investing $35 billion in EVs and AVs by 2025, by which point it plans to overtake Tesla by selling 1 million electric vehicles. Per year. GM GM,
It also unveiled plans to double its annual revenue to $280 billion by the end of the decade amid its transition to an all-electric future. Barra’s leadership has garnered praise from investors even as its pivot to power continues to plague oil markets under pandemic-related auto-parts shortages and other supply-chain shocks.
Safra Katz became Oracle’s sole CEO on the eve of the pandemic. This year he made his mark on the database giant. Known as a dealmaker, Catz moved Oracle to expand into healthcare by buying health IT company Cerner in June in a $28 billion deal that valued Cerner at $95 per share. It was Oracle’s biggest deal ever and one of the biggest deals of the year. Larry Ellison still plays a large role in the company he founded, but the Cerner purchase was part of Catz’s effort to turn Oracle into a cloud-based vendor and compete with Amazon and Microsoft. In September 2022, the company reported $3.6 billion in quarterly cloud revenue, up 45%, and Catz sees this as a “hyper-growth phase” for Oracle’s cloud-infrastructure business. As part of the transition to Catz, the Oracle ORCL,
It laid off hundreds of employees over the summer, mostly from its marketing and customer-experience departments.
Tim Cook is the head of the world’s most valuable company and its size is being felt in the stock market more than ever before. The company represents approximately 13% of the Nasdaq Composite Index and 7% of the S&P 500. Apple’s App Store ecosystem generates more than $600 billion in revenue for developers. On the technology front, Cook has lead Apple to create a much-anticipated headset that allows mixed reality. It will be Apple’s first big new product since a smartwatch, and Cook calls augmented reality “a big smartphone-like idea.” Cook has been a trendsetter of the market in other important ways. He has Apple AAPL,
The market repurchases $90 billion of its shares annually, setting the pace for stock buybacks. Cook’s steady hand has helped Apple better cope with the technical wreck of the market than other large tech companies, making it a more stable pillar to the Nasdaq Composite Index in general.
Walt Disney Company Dis,
Streaming dreamed of quickly challenging Netflix Inc., and a thumping debut for Disney+ accelerated even further as the COVID-19 pandemic sent everyone to their TVs. As Disney sought to restructure and adapt to the new reality, the company turned to Karim Daniels in a newly created entity, which would decide who was involved in Disney’s various business models: streaming, theater or cable television. C material goes. Daniel’s decisions make him the most consequential executive in the entertainment business. In 2022, Disney reported that Disney Streaming had become the world’s largest streaming company, with 221.1 million subscriptions to the streaming services Disney+, Disney+ Hotstar, ESPN+ and Hulu, compared to Netflix’s 220.67 million.
When the head of the biggest US bank speaks, people listen. And Dimon is talking a lot. In early May, Dimon said he saw only a 33% chance of America surviving a recession — before stock investors came to their own pessimistic conclusions about the economy, which has outperformed all three major stock indexes this year. Proceeded in loss of points. The doom continued into June, with warnings to prepare for an economic “storm” in June. JPMorgan & Co. JPM,
“Very conservative with our balance sheet,” he said. Dimon told federal lawmakers in September that they should “be prepared for the worst” and described cryptocurrencies as “decentralized Ponzi schemes.” In October, Dimon shook the markets by suggesting that shares could fall another 20%. He also urged the US to pump more oil and gas to maintain its global position.
When Jane Fraser took over the poorly performing Citigroup C,
Last year, she became the first woman to head a major bank. This year, it began a year-long major process of overhauling the bank with access to arguably wider global markets. This includes large investments in regulations and technology—and exiting businesses that aren’t helping an organization with more than $2.3 trillion in assets. Fraser has already sold nine of Citi’s consumer operations in Asia, Europe and the Middle East. Despite the market turmoil of 2022, Fraser remains committed to the turnaround plan.
Vicki Holb oversaw a surprise comeback in 2022 and turned US oil frackers away from swing producers countering a war-driven rise in energy prices. This year, Holb’s Occidental Petroleum is the best-performing stock in the S&P 500, helped by Warren. Buffett, who bought more than 20% of the company. Holb is paying down debt and returning cash to shareholders through dividends and stock buybacks, instead of plowing some of that money into the Permian, America’s largest oil field, where Occidental Oxy,
is the largest acreage holder. Occidental has led the charge by investing in new carbon-capture technology and getting Washington to support it in recent legislation.
In 2022, Andy Jassi made his presence felt in the CEO position…
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