On Wednesday, the Dow Jones plunged as 800 points after the U.S. bond market flashed a signal that a recession may be on the horizon. Rational people understand that this is largely happening because of persistent fears about Donald Trump’s never-ending trade war with China, in addition to concerns about a global economic slowdown. And then you have the president, who has never once been accused of being rational, smart, or even sane, and who believes that this is all the Federal Reserve’s fault.
“‘The Fed has got to do something!’” he raged on Twitter, quoting the leading lights at Fox. “‘The Fed is the Central Bank of the United States, not the Central Bank of the World’…. The Federal Reserve acted far too quickly, and now is very, very late. Too bad, so much to gain on the upside!” He continued:
After cutting rates for the first time in more than a decade last month, citing weak manufacturing and business-investment data due to trade-war fears, Wall Street has predicted that the Fed will slash rates at least twice more before the end of the year. If that happens, it’ll largely be because Trump drags his good and easy to win trade war out until at least 2020. Unfortunately, economists believe it may be impossible to avoid a global downturn, regardless of what the Fed does or how much the president verbally abuses Jerome Powell.
“With U.S.-China trade uncertainty lingering, investors are increasingly selling first and asking questions later,” Alec Young, managing director for global markets research at FTSE Russell, told Bloomberg. “The only thing seemingly capable of reversing the volatility is credible evidence global growth is bottoming out. That seems too much to hope for right now.”
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WeWork IPO pitch: $1 million in losses isn’t cool
You know what’s cool? $1 billion in losses, and then some:
WeWork’s parent company unveiled the papers for its initial public offering Wednesday, depicting a firm whose revenue growth is steep but whose losses have grown substantially as well. The filing gives the most detailed financials to date of We Co., which was known as WeWork Cos. until recently. From 2016 to 2018, the company more than quadrupled its revenue to $1.82 billion. But its loss also mounted to $1.61 billion.
In the first six months of 2019, We generated $1.54 billion in revenue and posted a net loss of $689.7 million…. The nine-year-old real estate company primarily rents long-term space, renovates it, then divides the offices and subleases them short-term to other companies. The sometimes quirky company has often said it should be compared more to technology companies than traditional real estate firms. The second page of its filing on Wednesday states: “We dedicate this to the energy of We—greater than any one of us but inside of each of us.”
Back in 2017, when WeWork’s valuation hit $20 billion, NYU professor Scott Galloway told Business Insider, “WeWork makes absolutely no sense. That is the perfect example of kind of this frothy market of consensual hallucination between the company and its investors.” As of today, the company is valued at $47 billion.
The Trump administration shelled out $16,600 so Don Jr. could kill sheep
It’s not “fair” for American taxpayers to pay for people to come to the United States, but a hunting trip for the president’s baby boy? That’s money well spent! Bonus: nearly half of it wound up in Trump’s pocket:
Donald Trump Jr., the president’s eldest son, flew to Canada for one of his regular visits to the Yukon mountains to hunt stone sheep with friends. He was accompanied by Secret Service agents on that August 2017 trip, just as he had been since his father was sworn in as president six months earlier. The Secret Service frequented several Vancouver hotels: Marriott Pinnacle Downtown Hotel, Pinnacle Hotel Vancouver Harbourfront, and Lakeview Inn and Suites. But it spent the most money at the president’s hotel, the Trump International Hotel and Tower Vancouver, according to documents obtained by Politico…. The Secret Service spent a total of $16,600 on the August 2017 trip, including $5,700 at the Trump International Hotel and Tower, $8,500 at other hotels and $2,300 on undisclosed expenses, according to documents obtained by Politico.
The Secret Service is required to protect the president’s children, but the tendency of Trump and his family to funnel funds to their own properties has complicated what had been a routine practice. Critics say the Trumps are using the presidency to boost the president’s businesses by forcing the federal government to spend taxpayer money at Trump properties.
“The presidency should not be a money-making operation,” Rep. Jamie Raskin told Politico. “The president is directing his subordinates in the executive branch of government…to stay at Trump properties.”
Rep. Steve King, the pride of the Republican Party
70,000 people (and counting) have a dream
To rename the stretch of Fifth Avenue where Trump Tower is located after Barack Obama, which would make the address of Trump’s penthouse 725 President Barack H. Obama Avenue, New York, NY 10022. While current rules state that a figure must be deceased for at least two years in order to have a street named after them, the creator of the petition for the name change, Elizabeth Rowin, is undeterred. “I am sure the conditions can be changed,” she told Newsweek. “There are two streets in L.A. named after former President Obama. These laws are arbitrary and can be worked around.”
“50 Cent” Copycat Likely Made $170 Million Hedging During Rout (Bloomberg)
Embattled Bank Stocks Lose Billions (WSJ)
Uber spent over $200,000 on balloons—now its CEO is getting rid of them to cut costs as nervous engineers worry about layoffs (Business Insider)
‘Huddled Masses’ in Statue of Liberty Poem Are European, Trump Official Says (NYT)
CEO compensation has grown 940% since 1978 (EPI)
Federal Prosecutors Accuse Capital One Hacker of Hitting Dozens More Targets (WSJ)
Guns N’ Roses settles lawsuit over “Guns ‘N’ Rosé” beer (NYP)
Pelosi says U.S.-U.K. trade deal hinges on Good Friday pact (F.T.)
The Epstein Tapes: Unearthed Recordings From His Private Island (Bloomberg)
Not Even Coffee Is Safe From the Malaise Sweeping Global Markets (Bloomberg)
No concessions from China as Trump postpones some tariffs (Reuters)
Gay Penguins, and Their Hope for a Baby, Have Enchanted Berlin (NYT)
Bloodthirsty squirrels are lurking in NYC park: officials (NYP)
Pumpkin Spice Spam Exists, and Here’s Our Honest Review (The Daily Meal)
— Why some Republican insiders fear Kamala Harris the most
— No one is safe: how Saudi Arabia makes dissidents disappear
— What the surfer-mom influencers of Byron Bay reveal about our world
— The horrors of Jeffrey Epstein’s private island
— Our September cover story: how Kristen Stewart keeps cool
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