Business briefing

The daily business briefing: November 14, 2022

FTX crypto fallout spreads, Morgan Stanley analysts say U.S. could avoid recession, and more

1

Shockwaves spread after FTX implosion

Fallout from the FTX crypto exchange's collapse and bankruptcy continued on Monday, with digital currencies resuming the declines. Bitcoin, the biggest cryptocurrency, dropped to $16,500 and is now down 65 percent in 2022, according to CoinDesk. Analysts say it could drop below $10,000. Ether, the No. 2 digital currency, has fallen more than 20 percent this year and was trading around $1,230 on Monday. Some industry experts are calling FTX's implosion a "Lehman moment," in reference to the investment bank's 2008 collapse. FTX said over the weekend that it was investigating a potential hack after more than $370 million worth of crypto funds disappeared, according to crypto analytics firm Elliptic Enterprises Ltd.

2

Morgan Stanley: U.S. could avoid 2023 recession, but Europe won't

The United States might narrowly dodge a recession next year, but Britain and the euro zone economies probably won't be so fortunate, Morgan Stanley analysts said in a series of reports published Sunday. China, which is expected to relax three years of COVID-19 restrictions in 2023, is expected to lead a recovery in Asia, the investment bank's analysts said. Morgan Stanley estimated that the global economy will grow 2.2 percent in 2023, under the 2.7 percent growth projected by the International Monetary Fund. Central banks around the world are hiking interest rates to fight high inflation, bringing down growth. U.S. rates are expected to peak in the fourth quarter of 2022 but remain high in 2023.

3

Farmland prices soar to record high

Farmland prices have soared to the highest level on record this year, pricing out many small farmers, The New York Times reported Sunday. Nationwide, prices have jumped 12.4 percent to $3,800 per acre, with cropland reaching $5,050 an acre and pastureland at $1,650 an acre. High prices for corn, soybeans, wheat, and other commodity crops have contributed to rising land values, as have the robust housing markets and interest rates, which were historically low until recent months. A September survey by the nonprofit National Young Farmers Coalition found that finding affordable land was the top challenge cited by young farmers this year. Government subsidies to farmers have contributed to rising land costs, the Times reported.

4

Stock futures fall after gains sparked by easing inflation

U.S. stock futures fell slightly early Monday after lower-than-expected October inflation triggered big gains, with the S&P 500 posting its best week in five months. Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 were down 0.3 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively, at 6:30 a.m. ET. Nasdaq futures were down 0.7 percent. The S&P 500 jumped 5.9 percent last week. The Dow gained 4.2 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq jumped 8.1 percent. Federal Reserve officials signaled that the softer-than-expected inflation data didn't mean it was safe yet for the central bank to ease the aggressive interest-rate hikes it is using to cool the economy. "We're at a point we can start thinking maybe of going to a slower pace," Fed Governor Christopher Waller said Sunday, but "we're not softening."

5

'Black Panther: Wakanda Forever' sets record for November debut

Marvel's Black Panther: Wakanda Forever grossed an estimated $180 million domestically in its opening weekend, leading the box office. That's a bit below the $202 million opening of the 2018 original, but it's still the second biggest domestic debut of 2022 behind Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, which brought in $187 million. This is also the biggest domestic opening ever for a movie released in November, a record previously held by The Hunger Games: Catching Fire with $158 million, and the 13th biggest of all time. It's a major success for a movie that faced a significant uphill battle on its way to theaters, as Chadwick Boseman, who starred as Black Panther in the acclaimed original film, died in August 2020 from cancer.

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