Financial Daily Dose 9.1.2020 | Top Story: Walmart to Roll Out Shipping Membership to Challenge Amazon’s Prime Dominance

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Walmart is again preparing to roll out its answer to Amazon Prime: Walmart+, a sub-$100/year membership service that features gas discounts and some free shipping (at qualifying thresholds) – NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg

Even with the Dow and S&P 500 slipping a bit on Monday, the three major U.S. indices wrapped August with 7+% gains, with optimism “buoyed by a shift in the approach to monetary policy from the Federal Reserve, which has signaled that it is likely to keep U.S. borrowing costs down for an extended period” – WSJ and Bloomberg

Despite everything the White House, foreign nations, and even the pandemic has thrown at it, “China’s export machine cannot be stopped,” with its bounce-back ability lying “not only in the country’s low-cost skilled labor and efficient infrastructure but also in a state-controlled banking system that has been offering small and large businesses extra loans to cope with the pandemic” – NYTimes

American small business are in the midst of an existential crisis. Tens of thousands have already closed, and without a new round of federal financial assistance, many more will follow suit—a “prospect that economists warn would prolong the recession, slow the recovery and perhaps enduringly reshape the American business landscape” – NYTimes

American and Delta Airlines have followed United’s lead and removed change fees in nearly all domestic flights, the latest effort from the embattled major carriers to entice fliers back to the skies – WSJ and Bloomberg and MarketWatch

A Delaware Chancery Court ruled on Monday that Cigna and Anthem “won’t have to pay damages to one another over their failed $48 billion merger deal” that fell apart in 2017, “potentially resolving a bitter, yearslong battle that had the two insurance giants trading accusations of skullduggery” – WSJ and Law360

New info from the Federal Reserve suggests that “[m]easures of U.S. wage growth which have surged despite staggering levels of unemployment during the coronavirus pandemic reflect disproportionate job losses among low-income workers.” Indeed, when these workers are excluded from the overall picture, median weekly earnings actually slowed in Q2, “further indicating that the moves in the aggregate data are being skewed by the disproportionate impact to jobs along the wage spectrum” – Bloomberg

Zoom just keeps on, well, zooming – WSJ and Bloomberg and MarketWatch

Volvo parent company Geely is laying the groundwork for a Shanghai Star board IPO that could rake in as much as $2.9 billion for the automaker in what would be the first such listing for a car company on “the bourse, a forum for high-tech and innovative companies that started last year” – Bloomberg

The SEC will vote tomorrow on a new rule that could allow the agency to “cut the size of the largest whistleblower awards, a move that critics say will discourage individuals with the most valuable tips from coming forward” – Law360

UC Santa Barbara, GE, Home Depot, and the battle over the crazy popular vintage-style Edison LED light bulb – Bloomberg

Herbalife has reached a deferred prosecution agreement with U.S. authorities in which the company will pay $123 million related to its alleged bribery of Chinese officials – Law360

Would any artist even want to be forever linked to the summer of 2020? Perhaps not. But surely a bit of sugary pop as we officially close the book on August can’t be a bad thing  – NYTimes

Stay safe,
MDR

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