Financial Daily Dose 9.15.2021 | Top Story: CPI Shows Slowing Price Increases in August

September 15, 2021

In welcome news for the Fed and anxious economists who have so-far stuck to their “transitory” inflation guns, Tuesday’s Department of Labor CPI release showed that “price increases for key products—like cars—were beginning to moderate, helping to cool off overall inflation” - NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg

Still, concerns remain about what rising prices mean for lower-wage workers, even in this highly competitive labor market - WSJ

Crypto-trading platforms were one of the especially hot topics for SEC Chair Gary Gensler as he took to the Hill in testimony before the Senate Banking Committee this week. Gensler also “reiterated his openness to potentially banning payment for order flow,” and he called for increased funding for his agency to respond to the many “challenges stemming from emergent technologies” - WSJ and Bloomberg and Law360

Meanwhile, Senator Elizabeth Warren is hoping to prompt some regulation of her own, writing to Fed Chair Powell and urging the central bank to “force Wells Fargo & Co to separate its traditional banking and Wall Street businesses, after the lender was handed fresh regulatory action and a $250 million fine this month” - Bloomberg and Law360 and NYTimes

The House of Representatives has introduced legislation that would “rewrite tax rules for multinational companies in a way that would allow the United States to join the rest of the world in an effort to crack down on tax havens. Treasury Secretary Yellen has been working for months to sell the G-20 on the global minimums plan, though whether her own country had an appetite for that standard has remained an open question - NYTimes

All the highlights from Apple’s fall new product event, which saw modest iPhone improvements and largely unchanged prices - NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg and MarketWatch and Mashable and TechCrunch

Today’s Elizabeth Holmes dispatch includes news of Tuesday testimony from Theranos whistleblower Erika Cheung, a former lab assistant at the company who ultimately reported to federal authorities the fact that Theranos’ “celebrated blood testing technology did not work” - NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg and Marketplace

It’s Facebook exposé week over at the Journal, and Tuesday’s installment explored the company’s failure to share publicly the years of internal research that found that its popular Instagram app “is harmful for a sizable percentage of [its millions of young users], most notably teenage girls.” Indeed, in public, “Facebook has consistently played down the app’s negative effects on teens, and hasn’t made its research public or available to academics or lawmakers who have asked for it” - WSJ

Pagaya, a fintech startup that “operates an artificial-intelligence network to make financial transactions like lending more efficient and give more people the ability to borrow,” is closing in on an agreement to merge with a SPAC as part of a deal that would value the company at $9 billion and help take it public - WSJ

Uber’s Chief Technology Officer, Sukumar Rathnam, is hitting the road after less than a year on the job, though he’ll stick around for a few more weeks to “help with the transition,” even though “the company has no immediate plans to replace him” - Bloomberg

As it prepares for the madness of another holiday shopping season, Amazon has unveiled plans to add 125,000 more workers in the U.S. and open “dozens” of new facilities across the country this month. It will do so while boosting pay “for workers in such facilities to an average of $18.32 an hour” - WSJ

Remembering the standup, SNL alum, Letterman favorite, and desert-dry wit—Norm Macdonald—who left us yesterday after a long, largely private bout with cancer. So many great Norm moments, but we’ll go with this, which may be the greatest late night guest appearance ever - TeamCoco

Stay safe, and get vaxxed,

MDR