Morning Brew - ☕️ Market cooling

All the reactions from the SCOTUS leak...
May 04, 2022 View Online | Sign Up | Shop

Morning Brew

Droplette

Good morning. Today is May the Fourth, so there’s a lot more Star Wars content in this newsletter than usual, including our annual tradition of investigating the collapse of the Galactic economy.

Hope you enjoy it more than Luke enjoys the blue milk.

Jamie Wilde, Max Knoblauch, Neal Freyman

MARKETS

Nasdaq

12,563.76

S&P

4,175.48

Dow

33,128.79

10-Year

3.000%

Bitcoin

$37,670.63

Marathon Oil

$26.25

*Stock data as of market close, cryptocurrency data as of 12:00am ET. Here's what these numbers mean.

  • Markets: Led by the energy sector, stocks posted their second straight day of gains. But some investors still see danger ahead, given the nasty one-two punch of the Fed raising interest rates (prolly happening today!) and slowing growth. Hedge fund billionaire Paul Tudor Jones told CNBC, “You can’t think of a worse environment than where we are right now for financial assets.”
  • Economy: The time to go after your dream job is now. There were a record 11.5 million job openings in March, meaning there are now two job openings for every unemployed person. Plus, a record 4.5 million Americans quit their jobs in March—also a record.

POLITICS

The fallout from the Roe v. Wade bombshell

A pro-choice rally in New York Dianna “Mick” McDougall

The abortion earthquake unleashed Monday night continued to shake America yesterday.

To recap: Politico published a leaked draft opinion from the Supreme Court that suggested it would strike down Roe v. Wade, which would leave abortion legislation up to individual states and strip away abortion rights for millions of Americans.

Yesterday morning, the Supreme Court confirmed the report was legit and launched an investigation into who orchestrated the unprecedented leak. It also reiterated that the draft does not necessarily reflect the final decision, which is due this summer.

The reaction in DC

President Biden—who promised to protect the federal right to an abortion during his campaign—criticized the draft opinion and warned that overturning Roe v. Wade could create a slippery slope to denying the right to same-sex marriage.

Some Republican lawmakers such as Sen. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell focused on the leak itself, demanding that the culprit, when discovered, face criminal charges.

Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, a rare Republican who supports abortion rights, said the draft opinion was “completely inconsistent” with what Justice Gorsuch and Justice Kavanaugh, both conservatives, had told her in meetings while they were seeking her confirmation vote to the bench.

As for Democratic leaders…

  • California Gov. Gavin Newsom and other governors promised to protect the right to abortion in their states.
  • Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced plans to initiate a Senate vote to codify Roe v. Wade in legislation to affirm abortion access in all states. But since it would need 60 votes to pass, and less than 50 senators voted for pro-choice legislation earlier this year, it’d be a symbolic move.

The view from Corporate America

There really wasn’t one. Large companies mostly stayed silent on the leaked draft, despite an increasing number of them providing assistance to employees in states that have restricted abortion access. The Business Roundtable, a group of influential CEOs, said that it “does not have a position on this issue.”

Some prominent business leaders did express their outrage, most notably Meta COO Sheryl Sandberg. She posted on Facebook and Instagram that if the draft becomes reality, “one of our most fundamental rights will be taken away.”

Everyday Americans also spoke up: Pro-choice protesters descended upon the Supreme Court Building in DC Tuesday, separated by police barricades from a smaller turnout of pro-life protesters. Rallies also popped off across the country, from NYC to LA.

Looking ahead…pivotal midterm elections are coming up in November, and the potential scrapping of Roe has catapulted abortion issues to the top of the conversation.

Speaking of the midterms, primary season kicked off yesterday with a big win by venture capitalist JD Vance in the closely watched GOP Senate primary. He is supported by Donald Trump and backed by billionaire investor Peter Thiel.—JW

        

TOGETHER WITH DROPLETTE

Let me in!!!

Droplette

That’s what collagen is screaming at you—and, more specifically, to your skin. After all, collagen is what keeps (ahem, kept) your skin firm and hydrated. But its natural breakdown over time can lead to fine lines and wrinkles.

Plus, collagen notoriously has a hard time penetrating your skin barrier. (Probably because it’s 300X larger than what your skin can even absorb.) So once it’s out, it’s not getting back in …

Until now. Droplette is a new MIT-born skin-care device that can replenish skin’s collagen by transforming it into a tiny, fast-moving micro-mist that can actually penetrate your skin barrier.

Ready for your dewiest, glowiest skin? Shop the Mother’s Day sale now and get 20% off the device + a free gift, here.

WORLD

Tour de headlines

Brittney Griner plays basketball Stacy Revere/Getty Images

The US ramps up its attempts to secure Brittney Griner’s release. The WNBA star, who has been in Russian custody since before the war in Ukraine, is now considered “wrongfully detained” by the Biden administration. In practice, that means that the US government will negotiate for her release rather than wait for the Russian legal system to rule on her case. Last week, Russia released former Marine Trevor Reed in exchange for a Russian pilot.

Biden talks up Javelins: The president traveled to Troy, Alabama, which is the sweet home of a Lockheed Martin factory that produces the antitank Javelin missile system—a critical weapon used by Ukraine’s military in its fight against Russia. The US has sent 5,000 Javelins, or 33% of its total stockpile, to Ukraine, and they’ve proved devastating against Russian tanks.

Earnings roundup:

  • Lyft shares plunged 26% after-hours when it said it would spend more on driver incentives and posted lower-than-expected profit and revenue.
  • Airbnb sees “substantial demand” for travel and gleefuly announced that US international bookings are topping 2019 levels.
  • Starbucks, under new/old CEO Howard Schultz, is raising wages for tenured workers and expanding training for new employees, but those perks won’t apply to the ~50 company-owned locations that have voted to unionize.

ENVIRONMENT

A 40-year-old crime on Lake Mead

An aerial view of Lake Mead George Rose/Getty Images

A 40-year-old, potentially Mafia-related homicide has been uncovered on the shores of Lake Mead, thanks in large part to climate change.

On Sunday, visitors walking along Lake Mead’s shoreline discovered a partially corroded barrel containing a body. Investigators said that the individual was likely the victim of a 1980s homicide and, given the timeline and the reservoir’s proximity to the Las Vegas Strip, they will “definitely not rule out” a mob-related crime.

So what does this have to do with climate change? Well, this isn’t the work of a clumsy murderer—just one who didn’t predict Lake Mead’s drastic water level plunge. In the ’80s, the area where the body was found would have been hundreds of yards out from the shore, under 100 feet of water. But, record temperatures and declining snowmelt runoff have led to the lake’s lowest level on record.

  • Lake Mead is currently around 1,054 feet above sea level, its lowest level since it was first filled in the 1930s.
  • The lake, America’s largest reservoir, is currently at 35% of its capacity.
  • 25 million people and millions of acres of farmland use Lake Mead’s water.

Authorities say that the Western megadrought—the driest two decades in 1,200 years—will likely lead to more bodies being discovered in Lake Mead.—MK

        

HOUSING

Can the Fed cool the housing market?

An illustration of the wooden frame of a house in front of a lavender background. In front of the house is a red sign with four $ printed on it. Francis Scialabba

When the Federal Reserve announces its interest rate hike today (as virtually everyone expects it to), one of its main goals will be to put a damper on housing prices that have skyrocketed more than 30% over the past two years.

How it aims to do that: By increasing the benchmark interest rate for the economy, the Fed will nudge mortgage rates higher as well.

Higher mortgage rates = higher borrowing costs for buying a house. And mortgage rates are now rising at the fastest pace since the spring of 1994, touching 5% in April after beginning the year at just over 3%.

  • That equates to $440 more in payments each month for a person buying a typical existing home in the US.

But the job isn’t that simple, of course. While higher mortgage rates used to be tightly correlated with lower home prices, that relationship has weakened over the past two decades. Nowadays, the severe shortage of homes available to buy is contributing more to soaring housing prices. In other words, the Fed may be able to dampen homebuying demand by hiking rates, but the housing market will only moderate when supply catches up.

Which is why many economists expect home prices to continue climbing for the rest of the year, perhaps by double digits.—NF

GALACTIC ECONOMY

The Imperial banking system: Too far away to fail

The Death Star explosion from Star Wars Lucasfilm via Giphy

In 2015, Zachary Feinstein, an assistant professor at Washington University, set out to answer the question nobody asked: What was the state of the Galactic economy following the Empire’s collapse at the end of Star Wars: Episode VI — Return of the Jedi?

The answer: On the brink of failure. A massive government project, the second Death Star, had just been destroyed by the Rebel Alliance, and the Galactic economy was set to enter a depression of “astronomical proportions.”

Feinstein estimates the Death Star 2 would’ve cost $419 quintillion to build ($226 quintillion in steel alone). Including R&D, the first Death Star was a bargain—just $193 quintillion.

Assuming the first Death Star had a similar cost profile to the Manhattan Project during WWII, Feinstein estimates Gross Galactic Product (GGP, similar to GDP) at $4.6 sextillion per year.

The only option: A bailout of the Imperial financial sector. The Rebel Alliance would need to prep a rescue package of at least 15% of GGP in order to prevent “catastrophic economic collapse.”

Looking ahead...the Force doesn’t awaken in Episode VII for 30 years following the Rebel victory, enough time for a U-shaped economic recovery.

        

GRAB BAG

Key performance indicators

NFT shredder illustration Francis Scialabba

Stat: Your Memorial Day BBQ will probably have a lot less chatter about NFTs than your Thanksgiving dinner last year. As of this week, sales of the crypto tokens have plunged 92% from their September peak, and the number of active wallets is down 88% from their November record, according to the website NonFungible.

Quote: “Markets have not been co-operative given the macroeconomic backdrop, but we do not believe in excuses and so will not offer any.”

Hedge fund giant Tiger Global’s flagship fund fell 15.2% in April and is now down more than 40% on the year, according to the FT. It highlights the beating that tech stocks have taken lately: Tiger has stakes in more billion-dollar private startups than any other investment firm.

Read: Kurt Vonnegut’s reply to high school students who asked for life advice. (Gabe Hudson)

BREW'S BETS

Go down the rabbit hole: And check out the subreddit Fan Theories & Speculation.

Virtual vacations are lame. But this website that lets you experience the world from home is actually very cool.

Meet the world’s most comfortable pants: DUER pants are stylish, sustainably made, and versatile enough to go from your bike to the boardroom. Look great, move freely, and prepare to indulge in a new-favorite-pants happy dance. Get yours here.*

A cream-of-the-crop asset class: Farmland has historically been one of the best inflation hedges, and through FarmTogether’s platform, accredited investors can access fractional shares of institutional-quality farmland seamlessly. Invest today.*

Scrolling real estate listings you can’t afford? There’s a better (read: less intimidating, more affordable) way to get your foot in the door. We teamed up with Fundrise to help you learn how.*

*This is sponsored advertising content.

BREWING, WHAT ELSE IS

  • Elon Musk told potential investors that he could take the company public again in a few years after acquiring it, the WSJ reported.
  • A union vote at an Atlanta Apple store—a first for the company—has a date: June 2.
  • The SEC is beefing up its crypto oversight unit by nearly doubling the number of positions.
  • BP posted a $25.5 billion pretax accounting charge from leaving Russia, which is the biggest financial hit for any company that’s exited the country in recent months. Otherwise, it was a great quarter for the energy giant.

GAMES

The puzzle section

Word Search: See if you can identify these really zoomed-in objects here.

Media juggernauts trivia

As massive as Star Wars is, it’s only the fifth highest-grossing media franchise ever. Can you name the other nine in the top 10?

FROM THE CREW

“The best investment I’ve ever made”

Point of Return promo image

If you’re interested in hearing about some seriously unique investments, check out our series Point of Return. Each episode features regular folks (not financial advisors) talking about the best investment they ever made. Recent videos include: how one man became a millionaire from trading cards, how one “meme stock” investor won big with AMC, and how someone turned an 80-cent airline investment into a 7,000% return.

Watch all of the episodes here.

ANSWER

  1. Pokémon
  2. Hello Kitty
  3. Mickey Mouse & Friends
  4. Winnie the Pooh
  5. Star Wars
  6. Mario
  7. Disney Princess
  8. Anpanman
  9. Marvel Cinematic Universe
  10. Wizarding World (Harry Potter)

Source

         

Written by Neal Freyman, Max Knoblauch, and Jamie Wilde

Was this email forwarded to you? Sign up here.

WANT MORE BREW?

Industry news, with a sense of humor →

  • HR Brew: analysis of the employee-employer relationship
  • IT Brew: moving business forward; innovation analysis for the CTO, CIO & every IT pro in-between

Tips for smarter living →

Podcasts → Business Casual, Founder's Journal, Imposters, and The Money with Katie Show

YouTube

Accelerate Your Career →

  • MB/A: virtual 8-week program designed to broaden your skill set
ADVERTISE // CAREERS // SHOP // FAQ

Update your email preferences or unsubscribe here.
View our privacy policy here.

Copyright © 2022 Morning Brew. All rights reserved.
22 W 19th St, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10011

Older messages

🌟 A brand new you

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

A crash course in branding yourself. May 03, 2022 | View Online | Sign Up Sidekick Logo TOGETHER WITH Vuori Hello, Sidekickers. Are you working “996”? No, it's not an angel number. It's the

☕️ Investment piece

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

The state of retail tech funding. May 03, 2022 Retail Brew TOGETHER WITH HSBC Hello, hello. Just a friendly reminder that Mother's Day is five days away, so if you celebrate and are a

☕️ Saved by the bell

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

How colleges are using marketing to boost enrollment. May 03, 2022 Marketing Brew TOGETHER WITH Amazon Ads Welcome to the night after the Met Gala, and to Day 2 of advertisers' equally glamorous

☕️ SCOTUS leak

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

An unprecedented leak changes everything... May 03, 2022 View Online | Sign Up | Shop Morning Brew TOGETHER WITH NowRx Good morning. America is waking up to the prospect that Roe v. Wade will be

☕️ By any jeans necessary

Monday, May 2, 2022

How Liz Hershfield is pioneering sustainability at Madewell and J.Crew. May 02, 2022 Retail Brew TOGETHER WITH Bluecore Happy Monday! Looking forward to seeing everyone tonight at the Met Gala, where

Your Monday Briefing: Australia’s new prime minister

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Plus President Biden's trip to Asia and catastrophic floods in India and Bangladesh. View in browser|nytimes.com Continue reading the main story Morning Briefing, Asia Pacific Edition May 23, 2022

🧠 Let’s talk about maladaptive daydreaming

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Sit back, relax, and feel the feels. This Sunday doesn't have to be scary. ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

Enemy Music

Sunday, May 22, 2022

On Sundays, Browser readers receive a special edition with puzzles, poems, books, charts, music and more – here's a little taste of this week's edition. ----------------------------------------

GeekWire's Most-Read Stories of the Week

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Catch up on the top tech stories from this past week. Here are the headlines that people have been reading on GeekWire. ADVERTISEMENT GeekWire SPONSOR MESSAGE: Did you miss the Pacific Northwest's

Lever Weekly: The Foxes Guarding The Henhouse

Sunday, May 22, 2022

The Democrats' proposal to tackle far-right violence by increasing funding for anti-terrorism agencies may only exacerbate the problem. Lever Weekly: The Foxes Guarding The Henhouse By Julia Rock –

☕ Island time

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Meet one of Peloton's biggest stars... Together with Manscaped May 22, 2022 | View Online | Sign Up | Shop Kate Dehler IN THIS ISSUE Tips for a first-time interviewer Tunde Oyeneyin says dream jobs

🤝Alternative mental health treatments

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Your 05/22/22 update on all things social work ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

Weekender: Instagram's Testing a New Stories UI Which Could Have Big Implications for Your Content Strategy

Saturday, May 21, 2022

May​ 21,​ 2022 Sign up | Forward Adobe BROUGHT TO YOU BY — Adobe Seven Reasons ABM Is a Business Imperative Download our fact sheet to learn seven key benefits of account-based marketing and why it has

Bearish On Bitcoin | Whales Eat Crypto Crow

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Also: Crypto's Great Reset: How Digital Asset Investors Will Recover From The Market's $1 Trillion Meltdown Also: Crypto's Great Reset: How Digital Asset Investors Will Recover From The

How startups can survive turbulent times | Boeing’s uncrewed capsule links up with space station

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Tech companies rescind job offers amid economic uncertainty | Seattle teens win at international science fair ADVERTISEMENT GeekWire SPONSOR MESSAGE: Did you miss the Pacific Northwest's annual