The White House and President Biden’s favorite corporate flagship are squabbling over fiscal policy. We will also see how Washington reacts to falling cryptocurrency values and promising news on the infant formula front.
But first, read why lawmakers will discuss UFOs on Tuesday.
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White House responds to Bezos inflation tweet
The White House on Monday hit back at Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’ criticism of his economic policies during the latest back and forth between the administration and the tech and retail mogul.
“You don’t have to take a big leap to understand why one of the wealthiest people on the planet opposes a middle-class economic program that cuts some of the biggest costs families face. , fights long-term inflation and adds to the historic deficit reduction the President is achieving by asking the wealthiest taxpayers and corporations to pay their fair share,” said the White House Deputy Press Secretary, Andrew Bates, in a statement.
“Nor is it surprising that this tweet comes after the president met with union organizers, including Amazon employees,” Bates added.
The background: Monday’s jabs mark the latest escalation in what has been a strained relationship between the Biden administration and Amazon.
President Biden regularly criticizes Amazon for not paying federal taxes in speeches calling for higher tax rates for corporations and the wealthiest Americans.
And he met earlier this month with union leaders who led efforts to unionize an Amazon warehouse on Staten Island in New York, a first for Amazon workers.
Hill’s Brett Samuels has it all here.
Diving in Crypto Stocks Boosts Calls for Regulation
A fall in cryptocurrency values and the collapse of popular tokens is stoking panic among some investors and increasing pressure on Washington to act.
Rising interest rates and the risks of recession have caused strong sell-offs in financial markets, including the stock market. Many crypto investors have seen their holdings evaporate, along with major players in the booming digital asset space.
- The value of a bitcoin plunged 12% last week to around $29,700, its lowest level since July 2021 and barely half the all-time high of $64,440 set in November.
- Ethereum, another popular cryptocurrency, is down 24% this week alone and almost 50% year-on-year as well.
But their recent steep declines have sent shockwaves through the broader crypto market, knocking out the Terra network completely. Sylvan has the latest here.
White House releases plan to boost housing supply
The White House on Monday outlined a plan to increase housing availability and reduce costs for renters and landlords, presenting it as part of a broader inflation-fighting effort for Americans.
The administration released a “housing supply action plan” that officials said would produce more housing supply, including affordable housing, over the next five years.
- The plan introduces new financing mechanisms to build and preserve more housing and increase the availability of federal loans for multifamily developments, among other measures.
- The White House aims to improve supply chain issues that are hampering construction and finish building more new homes this year than any year since 2006.
The White House also urged lawmakers to pass President Biden’s Unlocking Possibilities program, which passed the House last year and would establish a new $1.75 billion grant program through the Department of Justice. Housing and Urban Development.
Brett has more here.
Abbott says deal reached to restart infant formula factory
Infant formula maker Abbott Nutrition said it has reached an agreement with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on its way to restarting operations at its plant in Sturgis, Michigan.
The facility was closed for more than three months while the FDA investigated whether the plant’s powdered formula had caused four babies to contract a rare bacterial disease. Two of them died, and a subsequent FDA inspection revealed unsanitary conditions at the plant.
- Abbott said the FDA was unable to definitively link his formula to disease. The company said it has made corrective improvements to address FDA concerns.
- The shutdown significantly worsened an already strained infant formula supply chain, but hit parents who rely on specialty formula the hardest.
- Still, the formula from the closed factory won’t be on the shelves until six to eight weeks after the factory restarts.
Nathaniel Weixel of The Hill has more here.
Good to know
Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said the central bank made a “mistake” by reacting too slowly to soaring inflation.
In an interview with CNBC on Monday, Bernanke said the Fed should have started the process of raising interest rates sooner than expected because inflation started to rise last year and the Biden administration injected Another $1.9 trillion in the economy.
Here’s what else we’ve got our eyes on:
- A group representing the nation’s biggest tech companies is launching a seven-figure TV ad campaign slamming a key antitrust proposal that aims to curb the power of tech giants, warning it could raise already skyrocketing prices for consumers.
- Goldman Sachs senior chairman and former CEO Lloyd Blankfein said on Sunday that the United States should prepare for a recession.
That’s all for today. Thanks for reading and check out The Hill’s Finances page for the latest news and coverage. Well see you tomorrow.
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