Investors on Tuesday shook off three days of losses over fears about the omicron variant and Sen. Joe Manchin’s rejection of the Joe Biden Build Back Better Act, sending stocks and crypto higher.
Bitcoin was up about 4 percent, trading at $48,643 and Ether’s price rose above $4,000 to trade at $4,016.04 as of this writing.
The S&P 500 was down 1.25 percent, the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 1.36 percent (465.67 points) and the
Nasdaq Composite tanked 1.39 percent before “a glimmer of risk-on optimism returned to global markets” Tuesday.
However, the Nasdaq is down 3.6 percent this month and the benchmark S&P 500 is flat for December, leading tech bulls to wonder whether “there will even be a Santa Claus rally this year,” Fortune reported.
Investors around the world are apparently vested in whether President Biden can salvage his $2 trillion Build Back Better social spending package that was sabotaged by West Virginia Sen. Manchin. The crucial swing vote, Manchin went on Fox News Sunday to say he could not support Biden’s spending plan.
Manchin’s moves have the potential to hurt the economy. Moody’s Analytics is expected to downgrade its U.S. economic forecast by as much as one percentage point heading into 2022, due in part to Manchin’s opposition to Build Back Better legislation. Goldman Sachs also lowered its GDP growth forecast for 2022.
However, reports out of Washington, D.C., suggest the White House is still negotiating with Manchin, providing a glimmer of hope that Biden and Manchin — described by White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Monday as “longtime friends” — could reconcile their differences.
Manchin claims that he just can’t justify a “yes” vote for this legislation to the people of West Virginia — legislation that includes $555 billion in funding for mitigating and adapting to the global climate crisis. That despite polling by Data for Progress in August which found that 68 percent of West Virginians polled either strongly or
somewhat in favor of the legislation, including 56 percent of Republicans and 64 percent of independents.
“This one senator, who represents just 1.7 million people out of 340 million Americans, is putting a stop to what
over 81.2 million Americans voted for when they voted for Joe Biden,” wrote Eric Engle in an opinion piece for the Charleston Gazette-Mail.
“We all know why Manchin is taking this stance,” Engle wrote. “Manchin benefits to the tune of approximately $500,000 annually from his coal brokerage, Enersystems, a brokerage held in what is apparently a not-so-blind trust. Enersystems sells filthy waste coal to the Grant Town Power Plant, which the plant burns at an added cost to MonPower
ratepayers like me of over $117 million in the past five years. Manchin doesn’t want to vote for anything that could lead to the loss of this cash cow, he might have to sell his boat and Maserati.”
In addition to climate change funding, Build Back Better also proposes funding for medical benefits that are running out, a guaranteed $35 insulin cap, expanded child tax credits for working families, and guaranteed spending of no more than 7 percent of household income for childcare.
Meanwhile, Manchin is helping to move markets.
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