Business Update – January 25, 2023

Welcome back to our Weekly Digest. Read on for the latest updates and some ideas to help us all move forward.

The government hits its debt ceiling

The treasury secretary said the government would suspend debt issuance and investments into two government employee retirement funds until Congress acts.

Microsoft throws its weight behind OpenAI

Microsoft is making a multibillion-dollar investment in the artificial intelligence startup OpenAI, which makes ChatGPT, DALL-E and other tools that can write readable text and create images.

Spotify cutting 6% of its workforce

The latest tech giant to announce a round of layoffs is Spotify, who said this week that 588 employees will lose their jobs.

Fuchsia OS group saw most layoffs at Google last week

Google fired 12,000 people last Friday, and several projects were shut down or deprioritized. Fuchsia, Google’s future OS development
group, saw an outsized 16% of its staff receive pink slips.

Stock futures hold steady

Despite an underwhelming start to earnings season, the stock market has gained ground in recent weeks. However, there are definite signs indicating that the economy is slowing.

FDA proposes annual COVID shots

The shift in strategy is meant to bring COVID-19 vaccinations in line with annual flu shots to make staying ahead of the virus easier.

Bitcoin continues to gain ground

Bitcoin has started 2023 on a positive note, with the price briefly rising above $23,000 earlier this week. Investors are hoping for a reversal in the monetary tightening that spooked market players last year.

Farmers group points to an alleged nefarious plot to explain the dramatic rise in egg prices

Egg prices soared to historically high levels in 2022 – by as much as 60%, according to the consumer price index. One group is alleging it results from a “collusive scheme”.

Tax season has officially started

The Internal Revenue Service is now accepting 2022 tax returns and reminds taxpayers to file electronically with direct deposit to speed up refunds and avoid delays. Taxpayers have until April 18 to file their taxes.

M&Ms ditches “spokescandies” a year after makeover

M&Ms replaced their “spokescandies” with US comedian Maya Rudolph after a rebrand of the cartoon versions caused a backlash. Conservative news outlets deemed the recent makeovers, which were meant to be more inclusive and appealing to more people, as a product of “woke culture.”

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