New Fed Report Kicks Off Central Bank Digital Currency Debate

Financial Daily Dose 1.21.2022

January 21, 2022

The Fed finally made good on its promise to seriously consider a central bank digital currency with a report released on Thursday that “examines the idea’s potential costs and benefits and open[s] the door for public comment.” The report takes a largely agnostic approach (for now), and instead lays out “arguments for and against a digital currency” in hopes of shaping the debate to come - NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg and Law360

Intel has committed to investing some $20 billion on new chip factories in Ohio, “ramping up an effort to increase U.S. production of computer chips as users grapple with a lingering shortage of vital computer components.” The company is already in the midst of a similarly sized expansion of its existing complex near Phoenix - NYTimes and WSJ and MarketWatch

After rising to start the day, stocks fell precipitously as the day went on, leading all three major indices to close down around 1%--the third straight day of losses for Wall Street - NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg and MarketWatch

A panel of economists from the Fed, the White House, Wall Street, and academia take a crack at top reader questions on inflation. Well worth a read - NYTimes

Netflix added another 8.3 million global subscribers in Q4—slightly off its forecast figure of 8.5M. But the real trouble came in its predictions for the quarter a head, in which the ‘Flix set expectations at only 2.5 million (“down from the four million it added during the same quarter of 2021). That forecast helped send shares of the streaming giant lower for the day - NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg and MarketWatch and TechCrunch

Legal fun ahead for Big Tech? Perhaps, if a bipartisan effort in the Senate that would forbid “the largest tech platforms from favoring their own products and services’ over competitors’” moves forward. The measure made it out of the Senate Judiciary Committee on a 16-6 vote, though some Senators are already calling for changes before backing the effort in a full body vote - WSJ and Bloomberg

Amazon released details this week for its first brick-and-mortar clothing store location, an “Amazon Style” debut planned for Glendale California. Amazon’s planning a department-store-like feel spread out over some 30,000 feet and will integrate technology that will allow customers to “request additional styles and recommendations” while in fitting rooms - NYTimes

Recently compiled housing data shows that U.S. existing-home sales topped 6.1 million in 2021, a 15-year high “powered by low borrowing rates and an intense buyer demand that are expected to keep the market hot during the first months of 2022” - WSJ

That impulse to remake (or build) a space most of us felt during the slog of the pandemic? Yeah, so here’s what it looks like if that’s also your day job - NYTimes

Stay safe, get boosted, and have a great weekend,



The Robins Kaplan Financial Daily Dose features top stories and latest news headlines in financial markets, banking, securities and technology topics.