March 9, 2022

Biden’s Latest Announcement Will Affect YOUR Wallet

1933: US Congress is called into special session by FDR, beginning its “100 days.”

President Joe Biden announced that the U.S. will ban all imports of Russian oil, natural gas and coal in response to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

We will not be part of subsidizing Putin’s war,” Biden said. “The American people will deal another powerful blow to Putin’s war machine.”

Biden said the decision “is not without costs here at home.”

“I’m going to do everything I can to minimize Putin’s [gas] price hikes” he said.

“This crisis is a stark reminder that to protect our economy over the long-term, we need to become energy independent,” Biden added. “It should motivate us to accelerate a transition to clean energy.”

The president had initially been reticent to ban energy imports as gas prices soared, but faced bipartisan pressure to do so.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told the Democratic caucus on Tuesday that the House will move forward with legislation to ban Russian oil imports, despite Biden’s executive action.


Biden announces ban on Russian energy imports

February 15, 2022

SEC Cracks Down on Cryptocurrency

BlockFi, a cryptocurrency startup, agreed to a $100 million settlement over allegations from the SEC and state regulators that it illegally offered a product violating securities law.

The settlement marks the largest-ever penalty against a cryptocurrency firm and the first in which a crypto company was charged with violating the registration provisions of the Investment Company Act of 1940.

In March 2019, BlockFi started offering so-called interest accounts to the public, in which investors lent the company crypto assets in exchange for its promise to provide a variable monthly interest payment.

BlockFi then pooled investor assets and exercised full control over how much to hold, lend, and invest.

The SEC alleged BlockFi had misled investors about the level of risk they were taking on by lending out their crypto assets and that they didn’t have the information they needed to make appropriate investment decisions.

Without admitting to or denying the SEC’s findings, BlockFi agreed to cease offering or selling its unregistered interest accounts in the United States.

The announcement comes on the heels of Sunday night’s Super Bowl, which has been dubbed the Crypto Bowl due to a large number of crypto advertisements during the game.


BlockFi will pay $100 million in a settlement with SEC and states over its interest accounts

January 11, 2022

Dem Lawmaker Takes Aim at Pelosi with Ban on Congress Stock Trades

Sen. Jon Ossoff (D-GA) is set to introduce a bill that would ban active members of Congress from holding or trading individual stocks — an apparent rebuff of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), who recently defended the controversial practice that has earned her husband millions of dollars from trading tech stocks.

Ossoff’s ethics bill, which he plans to file as soon as he finds a Republican cosponsor, would also prohibit lawmakers’ spouses and family members from trading stocks while they’re in office.

The freshman senator may have trouble finding a cosponsor within the Senate GOP, as no Republicans have publicly denounced congressional stock trades. However, he may have better luck with House GOP members, as several have spoken out against the practice, including Texas Reps. Michael Cloud and Chip Roy.

“As Speaker Pelosi’s recent transactions make clear, decisions made for the people should be separate than decisions made for personal enrichment,” Roy told The Post.

In March, four Democratic Senators introduced the Ban Conflicted Trading Act, which garnered bipartisan support. But that measure only bans the practice among active lawmakers and senior staff members, meaning Paul Pelosi’s trading habits would be unaffected.

Ossoff’s bill is a bit stricter, putting it more closely in line with the bipartisan House proposal called the TRUST In Congress Act.

“We are a free market economy. They should be able to participate in that,” Pelosi told reporters last month. Pelosi’s husband holds millions of dollars worth of stocks and options in companies like Apple, Disney, Amazon, and Google.

“These lawmakers are just out of touch with how normal people view the situation,” said Arizona Republican Senate Primary candidate Blake Masters. “Members of Congress should not be buying call options on Big Tech companies they’re in charge of regulating, that is ludicrous.” 


Jon Ossoff exploring bill to ban Congress stock trades, rebuffing Pelosi

January 2, 2022

Wall Street Strategists Make Their Predictions for 2022

Wall Street strategists think 2022 will be a bumpy ride, with the U.S. experiencing continued inflation amid an unpredictable global pandemic.

Until supply chain issues are resolved, inflation is here to stay.

According to the J.P. Morgan Asset team: “CPI inflation … should ease on average in 2022 as oil prices recede, supply chain difficulties diminish and government aid to low- and middle-income households dries up.”

On the bright side, strategists think companies’ capital expenditures are set for a comeback.

J.P. Morgan says that “as more consumer spending shifts to services, businesses will get a breather and restock inventories.”

But COVID-19 will continue to dictate unpredictable recovery patterns.

Bank of America’s chief investment office thinks emerging markets remain more vulnerable to economic shocks.

According to Axios:

A best-case scenario is one where "monetary policy tightens less than investors fear," while strong capital expenditure and improving supply chains and global health continue to push growth, according to Morgan Stanley, which has an above-consensus outlook of 4.7% global GDP growth for next year.

And a worst-case scenario would involve new variants slowing growth as supply chain bottlenecks drive inflation even higher, according to Bank of America.


Wall Street predicts expensive, bumpy 2022

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