Ben Winck, Reuters Top News

Ben Winck

Reuters Top News

Washington, DC, United States

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Recent articles by Ben:

Politicians could do better with FTX donations

Shockwaves from FTX’s implosion have reached U.S. politicians’ pocketbooks. The bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange’s new Chief Executive John J. Ray III is urging lawmakers to return donations they got from its former executives so he can use the money to pay back creditors. But there's a snag: Many of them have already given away the funds. Efforts to recoup them will highlight major flaws in… → Read More

How investors can profit from Fed-ECB divergence

Breaking up is hard to do. Yet after matching each other step for step while tightening monetary policy over the last six months, U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell and his European counterpart Christine Lagarde are parting ways. The fragile state of the American economy and the euro zone’s surprise resilience could leave the European Central Bank as the lone hawk among major rate-setting… → Read More

Breakingviews: Bottling U.S. inflation could cost workers dearly

The Federal Reserve is being relentless in its quest to bring inflation down to 2%, from its latest reading of 5%. This comes at a human cost. Between here and there, nearly 1 million more Americans could go jobless, based on the Fed’s own estimates. Given the vagaries of inflation psychology, it’s not clear the Fed is justified in being so single-minded. → Read More

California floods underscore rising climate costs: podcast

Catastrophic storms have devastated the Golden State’s economy and left more than $1 bln in damages. In this Exchange podcast, climatologist Adam Smith explains how global warming has made weather events more expensive, and what governments can do to protect against them. → Read More

China’s TikTok wins while U.S. dillydallies

The United States has a new kind of Trojan horse. The Federal Bureau of Investigations and Central Intelligence Agency have warned that social media firm TikTok, owned by Chinese giant ByteDance, poses serious privacy concerns. Parts of the U.S. government are struggling to keep Americans from satisfying urges to download dance snippets. Meantime, one of China’s largest companies creeps into… → Read More

Missing jobs mystery puts Fed on back foot

There’s a conundrum in the United States’ labor market. A study published by the Philadelphia Federal Reserve last week said 10,500 new jobs were added in the second quarter of 2022. Yet the national statistics bureau had previously reported a total over the same period of more than 1 million. Those seemingly missing jobs put the Federal Reserve, which uses the job market as a signal in its… → Read More

Divided America will unite under economic duress

Gridlock plagues the U.S. government if one or both chambers of Congress are dominated by a party not represented by the president. That will happen when a new term begins in 2023, making it difficult for American legislators to accomplish goals. But one thing needs to happen: Congress must raise the debt ceiling so the U.S. government can continue to chug along. That will give lawmakers on both… → Read More

Market overhaul pits perfect against good-enough

Gary Gensler is going all-out to solve a crime with no obvious victim. The head of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission set out plans on Wednesday to overhaul the stock market in favor of retail investors, giving them fairer and better-priced trades. Big market-makers like Citadel Securities and Virtu Financial won’t like it, and the majority of investors won’t know there was a problem in… → Read More

Sinema widens gap between Democrats and Wall St

Big finance has lost an ally in the U.S. Democratic Party. Senator Kyrsten Sinema is changing her party registration from Democrat to independent, capping a years-long ideological shift by the Arizona senator away from liberals and toward the political center. It may accelerate Wall Street’s own shift to the right. → Read More

U.S. housing faces longer descent to basement

The U.S. housing market is destined to keep sliding. The highest mortgage rates in 15 years have stifled demand, leading the pace of existing home sales to slow 31% since January. An influx of new supply should depress prices from pandemic-era highs, but affordability will be squeezed well into 2023. → Read More

Big Tech layoffs are dystopian job-market fiction

Layoffs at technology giants including Twitter, , and Meta Platforms mark the first large-scale job cuts since early 2020. After years of falling U.S. unemployment, it might seem like Silicon Valley is foreshadowing the beginning of a dystopian future for workers. Yet there’s a good chance that what happens in Silicon Valley won’t spill over into the rest of the economy. → Read More

It’s the wrong time for Trumponomics

Former U.S. President Donald Trump tried to juice U.S. economic growth by enacting massive tax cuts and championing lower interest rates. Repeating that program would extend the country’s painful fight against inflation. As he sets his sights again on the White House, the country is turning its back on Trumponomics. → Read More

Stubborn inflation puts Fed on deadline

Inflation is coming down in the United States, but is still too high for comfort. The longer price-friskiness persists, the greater the risk that consumers start to expect it, and adjust their behavior accordingly. That puts the Federal Reserve and its inflation-fighting committee on the clock. → Read More

The US economy is still running on a post-COVID sugar high that's about to run out and make 2023 feel miserable

$5 trillion in stimulus and record-low rates fueled a huge recovery. Now the the comedown is going to hurt. → Read More

The Trump and COVID eras tanked immigration to the US. Reversing that could help ease a recession risk, sky-high inflation, and a labor crisis.

Immigration restrictions put in place by Trump, as well as the pandemic, have led to a labor shortage that's making inflation worse. → Read More

The newest Nobel-winning economist lays out 2 reasons the US is 'really exposed' to a financial crisis

Americans might be too comfortable with debt due to low interest rates, Nobel-winning economist Doug Diamond said. "They might get into some trouble." → Read More

Key inflation measure climbs to 40-year high as Fed efforts ring futile and shoppers brace for more pain

The Consumer Price Index gained 8.2% in the year through September, while prices other than food and energy rose at their highest rate since 1981. → Read More

It sure doesn't feel like a recession is coming. That's upping the odds of a nasty 2023 downturn.

Friday's jobs report puts the Fed in a position where its best course of action will lead to more economic pain. → Read More

The jobs report shows fewer people are unemployed — but in this strange economy, that's bad news

Job creation slowed for the second straight month but remains above the pre-pandemic average, showing that the US is still nowhere near a recession. → Read More

Payment service Zelle is 'rampant with fraud and theft, and few customers are getting refunded,' Elizabeth Warren warns in her latest crackdown on banking tech

Zelle repaid just $3 million in payments for the over $200 million in fraud through 2021 and early 2022, a report from Sen. Elizabeth Warren found. → Read More