The daily business briefing: December 3, 2021
Didi Global says it is delisting from the New York Stock Exchange, Congress passes a deal to avert a government shutdown, and more
Didi Global delisting in New York
Chinese ride-hailing company Didi Global said Thursday it planned to delist its shares in the United States and secure a listing in Hong Kong, instead. The decision came five months after the company's debut on the New York Stock Exchange, which raised about $4.4 billion. Chinese authorities had reacted with surprise to the IPO and announced a data-security review. Chinese regulators ordered Didi to remove some of its apps and blocked new users from Didi's China operations. Didi's move to delist in New York, which came as Beijing finished its cybersecurity review, was widely seen as part of ongoing efforts by China and the U.S. to weaken ties between the world's two largest economies.
Congress approves deal to avert a government shutdown
Congress on Thursday approved a stopgap funding deal to prevent a partial government shutdown before a Friday deadline. House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) unveiled the measure hours before House Democrats pushed it through with just one Republican vote. She said it would keep federal agencies funded through Feb. 18, with "virtually no changes to existing funding or policy." After the House vote, the Senate quickly passed the measure 69-28, despite an effort by conservative Republicans to block it unless funding for President Biden's vaccine mandates was removed. The White House urged Congress to use the time the bill would provide to "engage in robust bipartisan negotiations" on a long-term solution to avoid bouncing from one fleeting fix to another.
November jobs report expected to show strong hiring
Wall Street expects the Labor Department's monthly employment report to show strong hiring in November, potentially adding pressure on the Federal Reserve to speed up plans to unwind its recovery-boosting bond purchases. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal predicted that U.S. nonfarm employers added 573,000 jobs in November, up from 531,000 in October. Experts cited several reasons for a pickup in hiring, including a leveling off of Delta variant coronavirus infections and the expiration of extra unemployment benefits, which could nudge some people back into the job market. Companies also have been raising wages to recruit people to fill open positions. Economists expected the unemployment rate to fall to 4.5 percent from 4.6 percent.
Germany announces national lockdown for the unvaccinated
Germany on Thursday said it was imposing a nationwide lockdown for people who have not been vaccinated against the coronavirus. Under the policies, the unvaccinated can't enter non-essential businesses but can go to essential ones, such as supermarkets and pharmacies, outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel and her successor, Olaf Scholz, announced. Unvaccinated people also are forbidden to meet with more than two people from another household. The government also will limit crowds at large events, such as soccer matches, and shut down bars and restaurants in areas with high infection rates. "The fourth wave must be broken and this has not yet been achieved," Merkel said.
Stock futures edge lower ahead of jobs report
U.S. stock futures fell early Friday as investors awaited the November jobs report. Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500, and the Nasdaq were down by about 0.2 percent at 6:30 a.m. ET. Wall Street has had a volatile week, with concerns about the Omicron coronavirus variant dragging shares down, creating opportunities for investors to snap up stocks on the dip. The Dow rose by 1.8 percent on Thursday. The S&P 500 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq gained 1.4 percent and 0.8 percent, respectively. All three of the main U.S. indexes fell sharply earlier in the week. The Omicron variant has sparked "extremely high volatility and extreme nervousness in markets," said Carsten Brzeski, ING Groep's global head of macro research.