The signature has two important things for the US economy: it avoids the government shutdown scheduled to begin on Tuesday, and it provides billions of dollars in coronavirus assistance to troubled Americans.
It is estimated that in the two main pandemic unemployment plans, 12 million people will face their last payment this weekend and will now enjoy another 11 weeks of benefits. In addition, all recipients of unemployment benefits will receive a federal subsidy of $300 a week by mid-March.
The relief program also extended the protection period for eviction to January 31 and provided $25 billion in rental assistance to people who lost their source of income during the pandemic. According to estimates by the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, an estimated 9.2 million tenants who lost their employment income during the pandemic lag behind rent.
Note: Since Trump did not sign the bill on Saturday, it is very likely that people participating in these two unemployment plans will not receive payment in the last week of the year. When state agencies reprogram computers, their payments may also be delayed by several weeks.
On Monday, US futures and most global markets were higher as investors welcomed additional stimulus measures.
Background: Economists have been arguing for several months that US lawmakers need to provide another relief package to help protect the fragile economic recovery from the effects of the pandemic. The Fed also said the same.
However, it is extremely difficult to reach an agreement acceptable to both Democrats and Republicans. Trump̵
The transaction eliminates two sources of uncertainty for investors. It provides some relief to struggling Americans before President-elect Biden takes office next month, and keeps the US government running through September 30. This means that there is no annoying government shutdown until at least the next fiscal year.
China asks Ant Group to quickly reform its business
At a meeting on Saturday, the financial regulator outlined a list of expectations for Ant Group executives. Officials criticized Ant Group for “violating” laws and regulations, driving competitors out of the market, harming consumer rights and using regulatory loopholes for profit. According to the speech transcripts of Pan Gongsheng, vice governor of the People’s Bank of China, they also accused the company’s corporate governance structure of “not sound.”
The big problem: Ant Group, which is linked to e-commerce giant Alibaba, provides everything from investment accounts and small savings products to insurance, credit scores and even dating profiles. After Chinese officials shocked investors by stopping its massive IPO at the last minute, the company has been under scrutiny in recent weeks.
Here is more background information from my colleague Laura He:
President Xi Jinping made it clear at a recent meeting that one of China’s most important goals next year is to strengthen anti-monopoly efforts on online platforms and prevent “disorderly expansion” of capital.
Pan said the regulator told Ant Group executives on Saturday to “go back” and focus on its “original” payment services and other tasks. The regulator also called for “strict inspections” of the company’s credit, insurance and wealth management services.
The regulator told the company: “Ant Group must be fully aware of the seriousness and necessity of this rectification.” They added that the company must develop a plan to implement these changes “as soon as possible.”
Ant Group said on Sunday that it will focus on the latest requirements while focusing on innovation, serving small businesses and increasing competitiveness on an international scale for the benefit of the country.
“We are grateful [the] Guidance and assistance from financial regulatory agencies. “
Bitcoin prices are crazy
Bitcoin is collapsing—upward. Its price briefly exceeded $28,000 over the weekend, and there may be more room for operation.
Background: My CNN business colleague David Goldman reported that Bitcoin surpassed $20,000 for the first time 11 days ago.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, as the Federal Reserve cut interest rates to near zero (and hopes to maintain interest rates for the next few years), investors are investing in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, which severely weakened the U.S. dollar exchange rate. Relatively speaking, this makes Bitcoin an attractive currency.
It has also pushed up valuations: large brand investors are stockpiling it, and large consumer companies are embracing it. For example, a BlackRock executive recently stated that this cryptocurrency can replace gold, and both Square and PayPal accept Bitcoin.
Even with mainstream credibility, the recent surge in cryptocurrencies is showing signs of collapse-excessive enthusiasm is due to fear of being missed, not just market fundamentals.
Weibo announces earnings before the market opens. No major economic report is expected on Monday.
Tomorrow is coming: The S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Index will be released at 9:00 AM Eastern Time.