Joyful Valentine’s Day. Right here’s your fast rundown of the highest enterprise and tech tales to know for the week forward, so you’ll be able to spend the remainder of your day consuming (sorry, studying) the sweet you purchased on your family members (or your self). — Charlotte Cowles
What’s Up? (Feb. 7-13)
The Inflation Debate
The Biden administration’s $1.9 trillion stimulus proposal is winding its approach by means of Congress. However many main economists have argued that the far-reaching rescue plan is overkill and will create runaway inflation. In a speech on Wednesday, the Federal Reserve chair, Jerome H. Powell, disagreed, urging policymakers to put aside inflation fears and concentrate on restoring full employment. He additionally identified that the newest jobless numbers didn’t inform the complete story of the flailing labor market. Employment for higher-wage employees has dipped 4 % (nonetheless rather a lot), however the backside quartile of earners have seen a devastating 17 % plunge.
Reddit Raises the Bar
Capping off its starring position within the GameStop stock-buying furor, the web chat platform Reddit has raised $250 million in new funding. Now valued at $6 billion, the corporate intends to double its workers and broaden its consumer base. Reddit’s message boards should not solely a well-liked discussion board for inventory suggestions today. They’ve additionally turn out to be a serious supply of data and group for out-of-work Individuals attempting to navigate the complicated unemployment advantages system in the course of the pandemic.
Aunt Jemima’s Makeover
The 131-year-old pancake and syrup model formally has a brand new identify: the Pearl Milling Firm. Quaker Oats pledged to overtake the product line, which has lengthy confronted criticism for its historical past of racist imagery, within the wake of widespread protests over racial injustice final June. Its redesigned packaging will seem on cabinets this summer time. A number of different meals manufacturers that use racial photos of their advertising, together with Ben’s Unique rice merchandise (previously Uncle Ben’s), Cream of Wheat cereal and Mrs. Butterworth’s syrup are present process comparable revamps.
What’s Subsequent? (Feb. 14-20)
Hold It Civil
Should you’re bored with your loopy uncle’s political rants on Fb, you could welcome this improvement: The social media platform is altering its algorithm to scale back political content material in individuals’s information feeds. The brand new algorithm, which makes political content material much less distinguished however doesn’t take away it, is being examined in a number of nations and can broaden to the US within the coming weeks. The change comes by widespread request: “One of many high items of suggestions we’re listening to from our group proper now’s that individuals don’t need politics and preventing to take over their expertise on our companies,” mentioned Mark Zuckerberg, Fb’s chief govt. Not all political posts shall be affected, nonetheless. Content material from official authorities companies shall be exempt from the change.
India Takes On Twitter
Fb could also be firming down political content material, however Twitter is preventing to stick with it — in India, a minimum of. The conflict started when Indian farmers took to Twitter to protest new agriculture legal guidelines. The nation’s authorities ordered Twitter to delete or mute greater than 1,100 accounts that it says have inspired violence or unfold misinformation. Twitter complied with a few of these calls for, however refused to take away accounts of journalists, activists and different figures who’re exercising their proper to criticize the federal government and don’t violate the corporate’s insurance policies. Now, the Indian authorities has accused Twitter of breaking its legal guidelines.
The Fallout Continues
Regulators and policymakers are nonetheless attempting to determine react to the current GameStop stock-trading frenzy that hijacked the market in January and broken traders massive and small. Congress will maintain a listening to on the matter this week, and key gamers — together with leaders from Reddit, the hedge fund Citadel and the inventory buying and selling platform Robinhood — have been requested to testify.
A brand new evaluation confirmed that girls’s participation within the U.S. labor market fell to a 33-year low in January. Girls accounted for nearly 80 % of employees over the age of 19 who left the work drive final month. The corporate Bumble, which operates a female-focused courting app, had its preliminary public providing on Thursday, making its 31-year-old founder, Whitney Wolfe Herd, a billionaire and the youngest girl to take an organization public. The sale of the Chinese language-owned social media app TikTok to Oracle and Walmart, compelled by the Trump administration, has been placed on maintain indefinitely by the Biden administration whereas it evaluations nationwide safety issues.