Debt limit; Tesla slashes prices | marketrealtime.com


Yellen tells Congress US expected to hit debt limit Thursday

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has notified Congress that the U.S. is projected to reach its debt limit on Thursday and will then resort to “extraordinary measures” to avoid default. Those measures include delaying some payments in order to provide some headroom to make other payments that are deemed essential, like those for Social Security and debt instruments. Yellen said Friday that while her department can’t estimate how long extraordinary measures will allow the U.S. to continue to pay the government’s obligations, “it is unlikely that cash and extraordinary measures will be exhausted before early June.”

Tesla cuts vehicle prices in bid to boost flagging demand

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DETROIT (AP) — With its sales slowing and its stock price tumbling, Tesla Inc. slashed prices dramatically on several versions of its electric vehicles, making some of its models eligible for a new federal tax credit that could help spur buyer interest. The company dropped prices nearly 20% in the United States on some versions of the Model Y SUV, its top seller. That cut will make more versions of the Model Y eligible for a $7,500 electric-vehicle tax credit that will be available through March. Tesla also reduced the base price of the Model 3, its least expensive model, by about 6%. Far from pleasing investors, the sharp price cuts sent Tesla shares down nearly 2% in late-afternoon trading.

JPMorgan 4Q profits rise, helped by higher interest rates

NEW YORK (AP) — JPMorgan Chase says its fourth-quarter profits rose 6% from a year ago, as higher interest rates helped the bank make up for a slowdown in deal-making in its investment bank. The bank also set aside more than $2 billion to cover potential bad loans and charge-offs in preparation for a possible recession. JPMorgan said Friday that it earned $3.57 a share, much better than the $3.08 a share that analysts were expecting. The biggest driver of JPMorgan’s profits this quarter was higher interest rates. The bank set aside more money to cover potential bad loans and is calling for a “mild” recession this year.

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Nevada lithium mine gets $700M conditional loan from Energy

RENO, Nev. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Energy says it plans to loan $700 million to an Australian mining company to pursue a proposed lithium project in Nevada. It’s part of a program aimed at building up domestic supplies for a key component in electric vehicle batteries. The move ups the ante in what’s already a high-stakes battle over President Joe Biden’s energy agenda and conservationists fighting to protect an endangered wildflower found only at the proposed mine site. Ioneer Ltd. has hoped to begin mining there by 2026. The company projects the site halfway between Reno and Las Vegas could produce enough lithium to support production of about 400,000 electric vehicles annually for decades.

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Bank of America profits rise; bank warns of slowing economy

NEW YORK (AP) — Bank of America says its fourth-quarter profits rose slightly from a year ago, as higher credit costs and potentially bad loans more than offset a sharp rise in interest revenue. The Charlotte, North Carolina-based bank said Friday that it earned a profit of $7.13 billion, or 85 cents a share, better than analysts’ forecast of a profit of roughly 77 cents per share. Like its major competitors, Bank of America saw a sharp rise in interest income, helped by the Federal Reserve aggressively raising interest rates last year to stop inflation. BofA’s interest revenue was roughly $3 billion higher than it was in 2021.

Trump Organization fined $1.6 million for tax fraud

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NEW YORK (AP) — Donald Trump’s company has been fined $1.6 million as punishment for a scheme in which some of his executives dodged personal income taxes on lavish job perks. The fine imposed Friday was the only penalty a judge could impose on the Trump Organization. The company was convicted of 17 tax crimes, including conspiracy and falsifying business records. The amount imposed by Judge Juan Manuel Merchan was equal to double the amount of taxes a small group of executives avoided on benefits including rent-free apartments, luxury cars and private school tuition. Trump himself was not on trial. He denied any knowledge of executives evading taxes illegally.

Winklevoss twins, Genesis target of SEC crypto crackdown

NEW YORK (AP) — The Securities and Exchange Commission went after two prominent companies in the crypto community on Thursday. The agency alleges that Genesis Global Capital and the crypto exchange Gemini were selling unregistered securities through a popular program that was supposed to give high interest payments on crypto deposits. The SEC’s lawsuit against Gemini, which is run by Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, and Genesis is part of a broader cryptocurrency crackdown by multiple U.S. government agencies after crypto prices fell sharply last year, exposing mostly retail investors to billions of dollars in losses.

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Elon Musk rebuffed in bid to move Tesla tweet trial to Texas

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal judge on Friday rejected Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s bid to move or delay a trial over a misleading tweet about a potential buyout of the electric automaker, setting the stage for the mercurial billionaire to be thrust into a legal drama amid the turmoil of his Twitter takeover. The decision by U.S. District Judge Edward Chen came during a hearing held in San Francisco federal court to prepare for a trial scheduled to begin Tuesday with jury selection. The trial revolves around a 2018 tweet in which he indicated he intended to buy out Tesla shareholders before recanting.

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Wall Street ends higher as company earnings season kicks off

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks closed higher on Wall Street as earnings reporting season got underway and CEOs began to show how well or poorly they’re navigating high inflation and a slowing economy. The S&P 500 rose 0.4% Friday after erasing an earlier loss. The benchmark index closed out its best week in two months and is holding onto a 4.2% gain for 2023 so far. Stocks of several big banks rose following their earnings reports after shaking off morning losses. Tesla fell after cutting prices on its cars. The Nasdaq rose 0.7% and the Dow added 0.4%. Treasury yields rose.

Wendy’s announces corporate revamp, possible job cuts

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Wendy’s said Friday it’s planning a restructuring, including possible corporate layoffs, in an effort to speed decision-making and invest more in new restaurant development. The news comes just a week after rival McDonald’s announced a similar corporate reorganization. Dublin, Ohio-based Wendy’s said Friday it expects its full-year revenue will rise 10.5% to $2.1 billion in 2022. But Wendy’s President and CEO Todd Penegor said the company needs to focus more on global store growth and digital sales. He also wants Wendy’s to invest more in its fast-growing breakfast business.

The S&P 500 rose 15.92 points, or 0.4%, to 3,999.09. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 112.64 points, or 0.3%, to 34,302.61. The Nasdaq rose 78.05 points, or 0.7%, to 11,079.16. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies rose 10.97 points, or 0.6%, to 1,887.03.



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