Financial Daily Dose 1.21.2021 | Top Story: Wall Street Greets Biden Administration With Rally, Records on Stimulus Hopes

January 21, 2021

Markets gave a warm welcome to the Biden administration on Wednesday, as strong tech performance and hopes of “large-scale economic stimulus” helped power an across-the-board rally that brought all three major U.S. indices into “record territory” - NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg and MarketWatch

Morgan Stanley’s the latest Wall Street big bank to report strong Q4 results, with profit rising 51% from a year earlier. Goldman Sachs reported similarly robust Q4 numbers earlier this week - WSJ

P&G also posted solid 4th quarter results, with sales up some 8% as consumers forked over extra for “high-end household products from pricey dish soap to a $300 electric toothbrush” - WSJ

President Biden appears poised to tap former Treasury official and current U of Michigan public policy dean Michael Barr as Comptroller of the Currency, a “top post overseeing national banks” - WSJ

Some additional reaction and thoughts on the reappearance of Alibaba’s Jack Ma—perhaps best represented by the $58 billion that the company’s shares soared after Ma’s video chat started making the rounds yesterday - Bloomberg

A spate of last-minute pardons and commutations from the outgoing president late Tuesday night included a host of names from business and finance circles whose legal troubles have been Daily Dose fodder for some time now. A recap - WSJ and Mashable

Online payments specialist Payoneer is in negotiations to go public “through a merger with FTAC Olympus Acquisition Corp., a blank-check firm” that has begun raising new equity in hopes of completing “a transaction that’s slated to value the combined entity at more than $2.5 billion” - Bloomberg

On a day when we can expect more devastating jobless news, the Times assesses how underfunding and workplace changes have rendered the nation’s “patchwork” unemployment system unequal to the task of supporting Americans without work - NYTimes [and Marketplace]

Sixth Street Partners, a former affiliate of PE powerhouse TPG, has reached a $2 billion deal to acquire annuities company Talcott Resolution from a group of investors that acquired the unit from Hartford 3 years ago. Talcott currently “has more than $90 billion in liabilities and surplus for its approximately 900,000 customers” - WSJ

Amazon’s retail unit CEO has extended an offer to the Biden administration to assist in accelerating vaccine distribution in the United States - Bloomberg and TechCrunch

Bit of extra top-notch expert analysis from Law360 about the role that Capital One’s remediation played in reducing the amount of its recent (and still-large) $390 million FinCEN fine for AML failures – Law360

Reupping this Times’ introduction of Amanda Gorman as youth poet laureate. Because, you know, yesterday. Wow - NYTimes

Stay safe,