tv Boom Bust RT April 8, 2021 1:30pm-2:01pm EDT
this is boom bust someone's business show you can't afford to mess time rachel blevins in washington coming up amazon could be on the verge of facing its 1st union avar as a massive company is hit with even more antitrust allegations from small businesses who say it's time to stand up to the giant corporation a lot of european regulators are now saying there could be a link between astra zeneca covert vaccine and rare blood. back seen prices continues and the same agency to withhold approval from sputnik the then the job market may be ready for the buy in in ministrations new $2.00 trillion dollars spending plan both corporate america says it's not ready to help pay the bill well
discuss it all that we have a lot to get to so let's get started. amazon is steps away from what could become the company's 1st ever union as votes are counted in alabama this week and while amazon has pledged to resent every legal challenge possible it is now getting hit with a new campaign from small businesses who are calling for one of the largest companies in the u.s. to face accountability for antitrust violations a new coalition representing thousands of businesses across the country is calling for the federal government to take action after a months long investigation from the d.o.j. found that amazon prioritize its own products and stifle competitors in its marketplace so joining the latest is legal analyst molly barrows contributor to america's lawyer now molly what are the specific goals of this new campaign against big tag and how do they plan to get it done. well i think they really plan to put
a lot of pressure on lawmakers rachel they feel like now is a good time to go ahead and pursue this for probably a number of reasons but certainly in light of congress coming forth with recent investigations and saying hey we think that these antitrust regulations do need to be beefed up and so they're riding that wave and saying hey put your money where your mouth as let's see some real change with litigation and legislation rather when it comes to stopping amazon from the stranglehold that they say that they've got over small businesses and so this group is made up of booksellers grow sure there's a lot of small businesses that feel like they're being squeezed out of the competitive market by e-commerce giants like amazon and they specifically are targeting amazon and this particular campaign saying hey you've got a diverse some of your business you can't play the game and set the rules you're crushing asked essentially and i know we've heard a lot about amazon over the last year really a lot about antitrust and a lot of that's coming from congress so you can see how kind of the timing seems to be just right for some of those small businesses now amazon's response to this has
been to argue that it's the company's critics and their misguided interventions that are actually the threat to a free market place but clearly some smaller businesses aren't buying that what's their response. right i mean basically they're saying amazon you don't have a fair level playing field right now we need litigation to make sure that you. give us a fair market place to trade our goods and services if you will because basically amazon owns the market and then they have their own products as we know that they compete with some of these businesses that have their products on there and they're also gathering the data they're controlling how things are ordered and so these businesses feel like that they're being left out of a good part of the process that could actually bring more money into their pockets amazon's taking more and more fees as of 30 percent they say that's cutting into their profits and in the meantime like you said amazon wants to paint themselves as a victim basically saying look how many people we employ and we continue to grow last year when everybody was stuck at home we're here to support small business
we've given them this platform they wouldn't be here without us in these small businesses are saying yeah but you're crushing us as well we can't really succeed and go as far as we want because you're also using the data that you collect from our business being on your site to increase the sell of your products so it's going to be interesting to see what kind of reaction they get from congress rachel but in the meantime i think the are taking advantage of the fact that there's also that union vote that we're still awaiting the results of in alabama while all eyes are on big tech and amazon right now really does seem to be the case ok so what about the timing of this move why is this antitrust group going after amazon specifically right now. well i think that's because they're the main one that all eyes are on you know we've talked about congress and the legislation that they recently passed it's about regulating big tech in a number of ways from privacy to their stranglehold that they've got on competition but i think they specifically called out this particular group and isn't just because of just the widespread reach that they've got so perhaps because of this union vote too which could be monumental if if the $6000.00 workers in alabama and
bessemer at the warehouse decide that they do want to unionize and that's going to have a big impact potentially on other amazon warehouses and businesses not just in this country but potentially around the world so i think they see this timing is good because it's been a bipartisan issue and i hope it biden in the white house and some other lawmakers on both sides of the aisle saying yes we need to have more antitrust regulation that they might get some support for this a little momentum behind it now speaking of that union vote is there any word on when we'll know the results about what's going on in alabama supposedly it's going to happen at any time we were supposed to start seeing the public process of that vote counting process come last week but it got pushed back because there's been legal delays on both sides and i think we can expect to see that regardless like they could come down right now before the show even ends and say ok the vote is x. y. and z. but you're probably going to have legal filings term which ringback whichever side lost because there's a lot at stake for amazon with this monumental 'd vote unions have actually been declining in popularity in membership over the years and if this were to pick up
speed and they were actually to get a union at the bessemer alabama warehouse than amazon's going to see a level of accountability that they haven't seen before and i think it's more about negotiating the quality of work that's what i think is on does say that pay well and nobody's really complaining too much about pay it's more the working conditions and you know how they're basically treating their workers so this could potentially give them a lot more power here and elsewhere if it passes there definitely is a lot riding on the great insight as always molly varos thank you so much for your time. thanks rachel. while amazon fights antitrust allegations it is also fighting efforts from its employees to create the 1st union in the company's history nearly 6000 employees at a warehouse in alabama represent just a fraction of the nearly 1000000 that make up amazon's work force but their fight has caught national attention as the employees describe grueling working conditions
and say they don't have time for breaks to eat or even to use the restroom they also say they are constantly tracked and fear they could be fired if they fall behind amazon has already made it clear that it will do everything in its power to stop the efforts of its workers so to go further in depth on this topic let's bring in professor richard wolfe host of economic update and author of the sickness is the system now professor these stories we're hearing are disturbing to say the least with employees saying that even their bathroom breaks are monitored many are hoping that forming an union would bring about more protection but is there any indication that amazon is willing to make any meaningful changes here. you know amazon has been doing its behavior now for years everybody who pays attention knows it they are not of their own accord going to do anything. the reality is that the only force that now in this society has the ability and the initiative to
do something is the labor movement and as you were speaking a moment ago about the decline of the labor movement over the last 50 years and you're absolutely right this is a kind of make or break moment this is a time to change that the client and become relevant again in one of the biggest struggles of the labor movement in many years and i think much is on the line there is an attempt to say finally maybe the labor movement can be that which changes this country you know forbes just made jeffrey b. is always the richest man on this planet and he is the richest man because of the monopoly operated pie amazon that is crushing the small businesses as you just announced and confronting labor with intolerable conditions that remind us of the way things were 100 years ago and it's been almost scary to watch just
how much power amazon has gained especially over the last year alone and it's also interesting to see how they have responded specifically to these union efforts i mean they fought back against them in just about every way possible even sparking accusations that the company is intimidating employees and creating fake twitter accounts to discourage efforts why is amazon so concerned about the possibility of a labor union within its own company. well you know it's the largest employer in the united states have been hamazon wal-mart you put 2 or 3 of them together they are the monster employers in this country if they fall to unionization inside the united states whichever one of them goes 1st it will become or they fear it will become a kind of snowball i should make clear to everyone that amazon already has unions but not in the united states there's
a strike against amazon going on in germany as we talk there's another one being organized in italy as i'm speaking to you they those are common there they have unions and they have to deal with unions there's no question they can do it they just don't want to because it will lower the extraordinary profits that make jeffrey b.'s almost a man with $170000000000.00 of personal worth so that's why the fight is so crucial because so many other conditions are going to be shaped by it if for example amazon has to pay higher wages because they have a union and the union requires it and they have to bargain etc it will affect the wages of many other low income people across the united states because they will have to match or else lose their workers to the better paid amazon so it's not just amazon that is looking at this it's all the other big employers that are likewise
worried yeah that's an excellent point of course those dollars start talking in this case louder than the employees here but we know that there's also been increasing pressure against amazon regarding a host of anti-trust allegations and in response amazon has filled its team with former federal government officials who have worked for the d.o.j. in the f.t.c. is there any concern that current government officials going they will that they may try to go easy on amazon or google now because they know it could mean a job opportunity for them later on. that has always been a risk here in the united states the way we operate we make that situation create that kind of horrible incentive at the because of the revolving door we used to call it between government service and working for the government what the government is supposed to be regulating there ought to be an independent force here again if
a union develops it can become another player in this game it won't just be the government regulators and the company they regulate but it will be something that represents a broader interest namely the labor movement that will come in and say we have something to say about all of this also because the regulation of the company includes how it treats its workers whether or not it lets them have a reasonable restroom break and all the other things that we know are typical of monopolies like amazon and all we're seeing is amazon repeat that history excellent points to consider herr professor richard roth thank you so much for your time thank you. the vaccine crisis in europe continues as the region's medical regulators announced wednesday that there is a possible link between astra zeneca is coated vaccine and the rare blood clots that were reported in less than 100 cases out of more than 20000000 doses of the
shot that were administered. safety committee the for the good that you do it's in risk assessment committee of the european medicines agency has confirmed that the benefits of the astra zeneca back c. in preventing qubit 19. outweigh the risks of trying to fix the problem after and a very in-depth analysis has concluded that there are cases of unusual. following vaccination with the astra zeneca vaccine should be listed as possible side effects of the vaccine meanwhile the same agency continues to hold its approval from russia sputnik me instead of claiming it plans to launch an investigation next week and whether clinical trials of the vaccine followed ethical and scientific standards but as the region's these are rising coated cases some are waiting for europe's approval leaders and madrid are calling on the spanish
government to take action and have even tried to go directly to the makers of sputnik see themselves waiters in italy have taken similar steps and when running into roadblocks have pledged to invest heavily in russia's vaccine as soon as europe gives the green light. from one country battling the coronavirus to the next here in the u.s. a double variant believed to have originated in india has been found in california this comes as the state's governor announces things could get back to normal by june that is if cases continue to decline our teams natasha sweet has more on vaccine efforts nationwide. as millions race to get vaccinated a new type of variant has emerged from overseas and it's now being reported in the united states for the 1st time the 1st known case of a double mutant variant from india has been found in california the strain was identified in san francisco the variant reportedly carries 2 mutations which assist
the virus in attaching to cells some scientists believe it could be more contagious than the original strain of the chrono virus however it's unknown if the double variant is more resistant to the current a vaccine that's now we can say that. we just have not sufficient up. in the car. and in california rates of covert have stabilized over the last 7 days governor get a new some announced the state has the lowest case rates in the country with a 1.6 positivity rate he says this could lead the way to reopening the economy we can confidently say by june 15th that we can start to open up as business as usual subject to. i'm going mask wearing an ongoing vigilance newsome says by the end of the month more than $30000000.00 people in california will have been
vaccinated with at least one dose and he expects kids and college students alike to all resume in person learning by june 15th if things go as planned california will follow a number of other states in allowing businesses to reopen without capacity limits by no later than. in every part of this country every adult over the age of 1818 or older will be eligible to be vaccinated president joe biden cutting 2 weeks of his may 1st deadline for states to make all adults eligible for coated vaccines that date is now april 19th according to the white house nearly one in 4 adults are fully vaccinated and while an occupation rates are up biting urges americans to not let their guard down while still in the pandemic now being by the administration is launching a funeral assistance program that will provide up to $1000.00 to those who died of cove it reporting for boom bust and cautious wait r.t. . time now for a quick break but when we come back corporate america is not too happy with the
buying and ministrations plan to increase their tax rate as the markets react to the hopes that any 2.3 trillion dollars spending bill could be right around the corner for the cats at all net and as we go to break here are the numbers of the plough. to remember monopoly it's great to have a telephone boardwalk and park place. while we're entering answer big monopoly.
we are segregated only by social class most of the things people don't know so when you meet a 1st name if you're born into a poor family if you're born into a minority family if you're born into a family that only has a single parent that really constrains your life chances people die now there's just teen years old if you're born into generational poverty. it's a. fight every day to meet your needs and the needs of your family. but by an administration is moving full speed ahead with its plans for a $2.00 trillion dollars spending bill while it claims the funding would meet
infrastructure concerns across the country its critics say that only a portion of the plan would actually go towards that category and the increase corporate tax in order to pay for it is not surprisingly drawing backlash from $1.00 group in particular as one reporter noted corporate america has a loudly complain for years about the crumbling state of u.s. infrastructure and demanded that washington invest heavily to catch up with the rest of the developed world but now that the country's top corporations could be the ones to pay for it they don't seem to be on board anymore so joining me now to discuss. christiane and joseph gives the founder and c.e.o. of strategy marketplace joseph of all start with you here is biden going back on his word now i mean after promising to work together and create a bipartisan agenda right now all signs signal that biden is willing to sign a bill even if it doesn't have republican support is the new president going too
far to eliminate all of corporate america here. alienated 100 percent of it pretty darn close right i mean what's really interesting as we've had higher tax rates in the past we preach 2017 we're in the 3536 percent range and of course that well that's what the by an administration is leading on saying look if we go to 28 it's a heck of a lot lower than what we've had in the past but you know corporations they had bigger tax deductions back then and we haven't really brought back a lot of those tax addictions that's going to help with the small businesses or the business is of corporate america and really right now the way it's the end most business owners and most corporations they like bipartisan views and policies whenever you go too far to one side or the other it really doesn't work out in the favor of the business so right now going all the way just you know completely crush you know what they used the other side of the aisle has asked them to do i think
it's kind of a mistake here if he's promising to you know bring everybody together he really needs to do that and this standpoint and that's what's going to get business is behind him i mean we had jeff bezos not endorse that he's in favor of a tax hike but said he would be ok with a tax hike there's a carry out so that obviously he's playing a little bit of both sides right now because he's a little under fire with obviously some of the unionization problems that might be going on in georgia and so you know he's not endorsing a tax hike he's just saying we need the infrastructure yes but let's be smart about how we do it's going to do it let's also put some deductions or add some other stuff to the policy in there for us right at all about balancing politics there and especially there is that concern when it comes to democrats using their majority all around that that could come back to bite them in the next election year now kristie we've also been watching the federal reserve we know that the fed minutes for march were released earlier today how did the markets react to this. well
bonds have stabilized in recent days after climbing sharply from the start of the year so the yield on the benchmark 10 year ticked up slightly to 1.659 percent and the recent slip in the us has been quite good for tech stocks to regain their footing after a brief selloff that we saw a couple weeks ago so many of them had come under pressure from the higher borrowing cost but right now the bet is still on the economically sensitive sectors such as banking and energy that would stand to benefit the most from reopening cyclicals are also meeting a lot with cruise lines up about 3 percent so the rotation is clearly a value play and that's in full swing so for the last 10 years everything was all about the growth stocks so now we kind of have a changing of the guard here the s. and p. gained slightly do hover near its record highs on wednesday as the fed reiterated their commitment towards a common a policy in order to support a full economic recovery however some investors are still nervous with the easing of restrictions coupled with the panda consumer demand that could drive up inflation and help the to raise interest rates sooner than expected but at the same
time cmu groups fed watch tool has continued to indicate little chance of an interest rate hike later this year even as i am asked says if they expect the u.s. to come into expense 6.4 percent for 2021 so that's something to keep an eye out for yeah definitely and we know that the fed have been it's impressed with all of the progress that they've seen being made in the economy but there's still a lot to look at as we move forward now and just when it comes to the markets are they putting any weight behind his massive spending plan that's being called an infrastructure package or is it just kind of brushing it off how will it react if we have to live with that 28 percent corporate tax. well markets will adjust right i mean today markets were down before we had the notes from the senate and then all of the sudden we are in the day where they're slightly flat it's not a little possible but right now the markets are really part of the understand all
the information coming out that we're supposed to have a strong g.d.p. you know we're having employment rates go back up and people are getting jobs again restrictions from the virus are being lifted people are optimistic right now when there's that optimism that's going to drive the markets and that's what's really driving the markets right now once this package is fully digested and once that comes down the road i think then we're going to see what the markets will react again we we've had a higher corporate tax rate before this is a little bit lower i think we still like to see a little bit of balance there is some worry of business is going overseas and if that happens that could be a little bad for the market because that's bad for jobs here and you know if they're trying to put a restriction on having a flat corporate tax all across the globe you know we can really see what the markets can do i don't know how the markets will react if that were to come in place because i'm sure businesses are going to find a way around or find some countries that would be friendly for them you know if
that were to happen and now that's an excellent point as well and before we go here kristie i want to ask you about coin base if the latest tech company to hit the market with a nath of valuation so how is this i.p.o. shaping up. they said last week that approved this direct listing which is so far april 14th so the company plans to register nearly 150000000 shares of class a common stock trade under ticker symbol c.e.o. i saw this direct listing allows existing shareholders to sell their shares to new investors which will provide a very nice early exit for a lot of these investors so climate's today sadly reliant on a storage however the company has announced plans to grow and support a larger ecosystem points and crypto related assets so next week will be a very exciting time for the us they says this will be a huge that really will christiane thank you both for your time and insight. that's all for now you can catch boom bust on demand by downloading the portable
t.v. app lets see you here next time and as always don't forget to question more. problem drugs don't always come from unscrupulous dealers but from pharmacies to in every state in the united states we see me a very sharp increase in the number of people seeking treatment for addiction to prescription opioids invaded america under the banner of medicine persisted with the pain but instead of trying to wean him off though she just goes after dose after dose after dose and really became his drug dealer who's to blame patients doctors manufacturers.
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