The studio behind James Bond is said to be considering a sale. MGM Holdings has hired Morgan Stanley and LionTree to begin a formal sale process, The Journal reported. One factor behind the move may be poor performance by its biggest shareholder, Anchorage Capital Group. Potential bidders may include Hollywood rivals, private equity and SPACs.
The stimulus enters a rocky new world
Late last night, Congress overwhelmingly passed the $900 billion federal aid compromise, one of the largest in modern U.S. history, and President Trump is expected to sign it into law. More details have emerged on what the bill contains — and its arrival comes as the economy it’s intended to help appears to be in ever-worse shape.
About $166 billion in direct aid could be sent to Americans as soon as next week, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said yesterday. About $325 billion in small-business aid — including $285 billion in new Paycheck Protection Program loans and $20 billion for businesses in low-income communities — is also part of the package. (Here’s a good summary of what’s inside the enormous bill.)
The drama behind the stimulus’s passage suggests that moderates may be the key to President-elect Joe Biden’s agenda: “In the long run, this is the way to govern,” Representative Josh Gottheimer, Democrat of New Jersey, told The Times’s Carl Hulse.
Not everyone is happy about it: Six Republican senators voted against the bill, while economists and progressives had argued for more relief.
Things are getting bleaker. Communities in California and elsewhere still face economic restrictions as intensive-care operations are overburdened, and the issue of federal direct aid to states was left out of the $900 billion aid bill. Concerns about a new, apparently more transmissible coronavirus variant spreading through Britain roiled markets yesterday, as governments around the world blocked travel from the U.K.
“Massive shutdowns in Europe are a harsh reminder we aren’t out of the woods yet,” Ryan Detrick, the chief market strategist for LPL Financial, told The Times.
Business & Economy
Should Biden borrow from corporate America’s diversity playbook?
The N.A.A.C.P.’s president, Derrick Johnson, is calling on President-elect Joe Biden to create a cabinet-level position focused on “racial justice, equity and advancement.” The role, proposed as part of the National Economic Council, would seek to apply a “racial equity lens” to White House policies, Mr. Johnson told DealBook. It’s modeled after similar practices in corporate America.
Equal footing to climate change. Given that racial equity is a high-profile objective of Mr. Biden’s administration, Mr. Johnson said it deserved a dedicated role in the same way that John Kerry has been tapped as climate envoy. “Racial equity is as important as any priority that he’s had in mind, and should be equal, considering the current political environment,” Mr. Johnson said.
Learning from the private sector. Corporate America’s efforts to promote diversity via roles focused on diversity and inclusion have a mixed record, but Mr. Johnson said creating a position that reports directly to Mr. Biden would solve a major problem: a lack of authority.
Coretha Rushing, a managing director at Merryck & Company, an executive coaching firm, said the key would be for the administration to broadly prioritize the issue. “You may assign a person that role — but when you’re talking about something that’s so embedded in the culture and how you operate, it really is almost everybody’s job,” she said.