Intelligence

Trade tensions defusing between U.S. and China

A win-win?: CNBC reports a trade deal has been struck between the U.S. and China, which could positively impact stock prices. Policy strategists say some issues remain, but market strategists expect a nearly 5 percent increase in the S&P 500 to about 3,318 for 2020. 

“The key is you are telling businesses not only tariffs are not going up, but they are going down,” said Daniel Clifton, head of policy research at Strategas. “The biggest consequence of that is you could start to see business spending going up as confidence is coming back.”

The evolution of home-buying: The 2010s were the decade that informed how you shop for homes; the 2020s will shape how you buy them, according to Curbed. With the rise of smartphones and internet home browsing on sites like Zillow and Redfin in the 2010s, it’s not surprising tech is anticipated to shake up the real estate landscape again in the 2020s; this time, with how we actually purchase homes.

From Curbed: “…there’s little chance this process will be the same in 2030 as it is today. Venture capital funding has poured into the real estate technology space hoping to solve the seemingly endless pain points in the process of buying and selling homes, and that funding has launched numerous startups.”

SEC takes a closer look at ESG: Conscious investing is all the rage; but with big promises made by portfolios that claim to be ESG-focused, the SEC is forced to take a closer look to ensure these claims are actually fulfilled, according to The Wall Street Journal. The division of the SEC looking at the matter is separate from the traditional regulatory department but can seek information from large groups of firms to better understand trends in the space. Examiners can then issue letters to those who don’t comply with what it deems satisfactory, however, letters are not accompanied by fines. “While the letters don’t trigger fines, examiners can refer their findings to SEC enforcement attorneys for a formal investigation,” reports the Journal.

Game-changer for tech firms in finance: A new rule could give tech companies an advantage in the finance space, according to The Wall Street Journal. The change would “modernize the classification of brokered deposits to account for changes in technology and how many consumers use tech to get access to banking, including the rise of ‘third-party fintech apps.’”

The most wonderful (shopping) time of the year: The holidays are here and among spending time with friends and family,  this festivity is accompanied by shopping sprees that test our brand loyalty and wallets. Check out our blog on the ever-growing influence that brands have on our spending behavior.