Financial Daily Dose 10.30.2020 | Top Story: U.S. GDP Roars Back in Q3 But Dramatically Lags Pre-Pandemic Levels

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Breaking down Thursday’s GDP report, which—as expected—was gangbusters in isolation but in context shows U.S. economic output “3.5 percent below where it was in the last pre-pandemic quarter, equivalent to a severe recession but not a complete collapse in activity” – NYTimes and WSJ and Marketplace

Q3’s economic rebound, such as it was, was driven in part by new home starts and the rest of the housing market in addition to pent-up demand from American consumers across the board. Exports, however, were down—in part due to America’s role as a large exporter of services, “which have been slow to recover” – NYTimes

Thursday figures also showed that last week’s jobless claims were the lowest in 7 months, falling to 751,000—a total “exceptionally high by historical standards,” but one that suggests an easing in layoffs “despite a rise in coronavirus infections” – WSJ

Stocks bounced back yesterday thanks to some strong Q3 figures from Big Tech, which generally saw profits rise on the return of advertisers to their platforms – NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg

But they’re not likely to close out the month on a high note, as those generally strong Tech numbers weren’t enough to satisfy fickle investors – WSJ and Bloomberg

Though holding its basic subscription price steady at $9/month, Netflix raised the prices of its standard streaming plan and premium plan as a surfeit of new competitors have challenged Netflix’s streaming supremacy and pushed it to fill the coffers for yet more content that its subscribers demand – WSJ and Bloomberg and MarketWatch and Mashable

As the oil industry continues to struggle, Exxon Mobil announced this week that it “expects to shed as much as 15% of its global workforce over the next year, including 1,900 jobs in the U.S.” The announcement follows similar moves by Exxon rivals Royal Dutch Shell, BP, and Chevron – WSJ and Bloomberg

Pressured to speak out thanks to an outflow of investors, Apollo Global’s Leon Black called giving Jeffrey Epstein a second chance after his sex-crimes conviction a “terrible mistake” during an earnings call on Thursday – NYTimes and WSJ

A community advocacy group has sued the CFPB in D.C. federal court over its “recent repeal of ability-to-repay underwriting requirements for payday lenders, arguing the agency used shoddy analysis and slanted reasoning to reach a preordained conclusion that shouldn’t be allowed to stand” – Law360

FiatChrysler will soon be on the receiving end of a $6.4 billion UK group action over allegations that more than 500,000 of its vehicles sold in Britain are “equipped with illegal emissions-cheating devices” – Law360

That grand Bavarian vacation off the table thanks to the pandemic? Never fear, the North Georgia mountains [yes, seriously] are a mere car trip away – WSJ

We’re going dark next week, and we’ll see you back here on the 9th. In the meantime, stay safe, have a great Halloween weekend, and go vote (if you haven’t already).

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