Financial Daily Dose 12.2.2020 | Top Story: Treasury, Fed Paint Divergent Views of Economic Recovery

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Tuesday’s Senate Committee hearing with Fed Chair Powell and Treasury Secretary Mnuchin showed the growing rift between the two over their views of “challenges facing the United States economy in the months ahead.” While Powell was wary about the state of the economy due to “ongoing uncertainty over vaccine speed and distribution, the economic dangers of a surge in virus cases and the grim reality that many remain out of work,” Mnuchin “painted a sunnier image of the economic recovery, emphasizing state and local lockdowns as the main threat to growth.” Mnuchin also sparred with lawmakers over his decision to take back unspent CARES Act money - NYTimes and WSJ and Marketplace and Law360

In what we’re viewing as related news, buzz about a lame-duck stimulus deal has started again, with House and Senate leaders each reportedly discussing potential proposals with their caucuses - Bloomberg

Salesforce made it official on Tuesday. It will acquire workplace software company Slack for $27.7 billion in cash and stock - NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg and MarketWatch and TechCrunch

Disney announced major changes among its execs this week, consolidating its TV operations in what insiders are viewing as part of an industry-wide shift in focus “from network television and theatrical movies to streaming media” - NYTimes and Bloomberg

Who knew? [Short answer: millennials and Gen Zers.] TikTok is proving a hot space for budding entrepreneurs [and musicians]. Check out a few #sidehustle posts, and you’ll see what I mean - WSJ

The Journal reports that the ECB’s chief economist broke with the central bank’s longstanding practice of “delivering information to everyone at the same time” by making “dozens of private calls to banks and investors after policy meetings this year”—apparently in “an effort to clarify [the ECB’s] sometimes-puzzling public pronouncements” - WSJ and Bloomberg

As if there wasn’t enough change wrapped into 2020 as it is, moves this year by Apple and Amazon away from Intel chip technology and to their own “homegrown chips that were designed using technology that Arm, a British company, licenses for smartphones and other consumer products” likely signify a rise in the relative power of chip users vs. silicon suppliers, “where the power has long resided” - NYTimes

The two big As are also teaming up in an effort to “support the growing number of companies developing apps and other software for Apple devices,” with Amazon announcing plans to make “Apple computers available through Amazon Web Services, its cloud-computing business—enabling Apple developers to make and fully test apps remotely” - WSJ

BlackRock as the new Government Sachs? Let’s not get too crazy now, but there’s a bit of a trend at play - Bloomberg

HP’s packing up its toys, leaving the garage where it all started, and heading to Texas. The company announced that the Bay Area will “remain a strategic hub” for the longtime Silicon Valley company, but official HQ will be on a newly built campus outside of Houston - WSJ and MarketWatch and CNBC

Airbnb revealed this week that it intends to price its shares at between $44 and $50 in its forthcoming IPO, a range that could value the company in the $35 billion range - NYTimes and WSJ

Not sure I’m buying that it’s the next big thing, but the anglophile preppie in me isn’t minding the apparent ascendance of “cricket style” as an alternative to lockdown sweats - WSJ

Stay safe.

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