5 Things to Know Before Markets Open

News of the day for May 24, 2023

Janet Yellen

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Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen is set to speak as debt ceiling negotiations continue and the FTC is investigating baby formula manufacturers on collusion charges. Here’s what investors need to know today.

1. Yellen to Speak as Debt Ceiling Negotiations Continue

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will speak today at 10:05 a.m. ET in London as Democrats and Republicans negotiate in Washington over raising the U.S. debt ceiling. Yellen has warned that the U.S. will reach its borrowing limit on June 1. Also today, Federal Reserve Gov. Christopher Waller is scheduled to speak at 12:40 p.m. ET and the minutes of the Federal Reserve's May meeting will be released at 2 p.m. ET.

2. FTC Investigating Collusion Among Baby Formula Manufacturers

The Federal Trade Commission is investigating whether Abbott Laboratories, Nestle and other baby-formula manufacturers colluded on bids for state contracts. The agency is looking at whether the formula makers worked together to secure lucrative Women, Infants and Children (WIC) formula program funding. Several federal agencies have opened a probe into Abbott after it closed a manufacturing plant last year, creating a baby formula shortage.

3. UK Inflation Sinks But Economists See Another Rate Hike Coming

Inflation in the U.K. slowed to an annual rate of 8.7% in April, down from 10.1% in March, but still higher than economist projections as persistent inflation has dogged the British economy. The inflation data showed that consumer prices for food and non-alcoholic drinks continued to rise, leading economists to forecast that the Bank of England will again raise interest rates from its current 4.5% at its next meeting, which would mark the 13th straight rate raise from the central bank.

4. Citizens Bank Fined $9 Million over Handling of Fraud Complaints

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued a $9 million fine against Citizens Bank, charging that it violated the Truth in Lending Act for automatically denying fraud claims in certain cases. The action resolves the 2020 lawsuit the agency brought against Rhode Island-based Citizens Bank, a subsidiary of Citizens Financial Group.

5. Netflix Introduces Password Sharing Fee in US

Netflix (NFLX) rolled out its anticipated password sharing crackdown in the U.S., introducing an $8 additional fee for customers who share their login information with family and friends outside of their household. In a bid to hold onto subscribers, Netflix has also introduced the fee in several countries, including the U.K., France, Germany, Mexico, Brazil, Singapore, and Australia. Shares of Netflix traded 0.5% lower in pre-market trading.

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  1. Wall Street Journal. “Janet Yellen, Former Google Chief Eric Schmidt Speak at WSJ’s CEO Council Summit.”

  2. Wall Street Journal. “Baby-Formula Makers Face FTC Investigation for Collusion.”

  3. CNBC. “UK inflation sinks below 10% for the first time since August.”

  4. CNBC. “Citizens Bank fined $9 million for mismanaging fraud complaints.”

  5. MarketWatch. “Netflix to charge $8 per shared account in U.S.

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