From Wall Street to Silicon Valley, these are the top stories that moved markets and had investors, business leaders, and entrepreneurs talking this week on Cheddar.
It was a tough week for tech stocks — those trusty workhorses of the pandemic-era bull market. News from the Federal Reserve that it's considering tightening its monetary policy sooner than many expected drove up Treasury yields, which led to a sell-off among rate-sensitive growth stocks. The bad vibes didn't end there though. Hedge funds like Cathie Wood's ARK Innovation were especially hard-hit, performing well below the major indexes. Crypto, likewise, is having a tough start to the year, dropping to one-month lows amid the broader market sell-off. Analysts have been predicting for a while that 2022 might bring a shift in the stock market away from high-flying tech stocks, but the New Year hangover has been rougher than expected. In the meantime, Apple became the first U.S. company to reach a $3 trillion market cap.
MIXED JOBS REPORT
A strong jobs report on Friday might have helped steady the market, but the latest reading from the U.S. Labor Department was decidedly mixed. Job gains came in at nearly half of estimates, even as unemployment dropped down to 3.9 percent and workers made sizable wage gains. The disappointing report fueled a further rise in 10-year Treasury bonds, which has contributed to mortgage rates hitting their highest levels since 2020. So, it's been a funky week for markets, and added uncertainty around the economic impact of the omicron variant hasn't helped.
EV RACE HEATS UP
Not all is woe on Wall Street. Automakers, for instance, are beginning the year on better footing. Following news of a rebound in sales in 2021 from its pandemic lows, there was a slew of major announcements from carmakers about their electric vehicle roll-outs. GM unveiled its electric Chevy Silverado, pitching it as a rival to Ford's forthcoming F-150 Lightning. Mercedes-Benz also announced its luxury EV model, and Vietnam's first global automaker, VinFast, unveiled its full EV line-up at the annual CES trade show. If all this EV talk wasn't enough to signal that a new era is beginning, Toyota this week officially overtook GM as the top car seller in the U.S., after a 90-year run from the Michigan-based manufacturer.
BED BATH & BEYOND (EXPECTATIONS)
Meanwhile, Bed Bath & Beyond delivered less than stellar third-quarter results, but that didn't stop the sometimes meme-stock from rising 8 percent on Thursday. The stock remains heavily shorted, and heavily traded, and by the end of the week it was down more than 5 percent on the week. Regardless, the company is moving forward with a plan to shut down up to 200 of its stores over the next two years, as supply chain pressures cost the company nearly $100 million and it faces increasing competition from online retailers.
DAVE'S BIG DEBUT
Billionaire Mark Cuban is wading into the fintech boom with the public debut of a new banking app called Dave. The company went public via a SPAC and started trading Thursday. Cuban is pitching the app as a solution to excessive fees in retail banking. Despite the positive buzz, the company nonetheless had a rocky debut, sinking around 25 percent from its offering price.