News from Around the Web for Jan 16, 2024

News From Around the Web

#10 Ramaswamy Suspends 2024 Bid, Endorses Trump - Caroline Vakil for The Hill

Vivek Ramaswamy on Monday night announced he’s dropping out of the 2024 GOP presidential race following a disappointing showing in the Iowa caucuses and endorsing former President, the latest announcement to winnow down the primary field as Trump dominates. “As of this moment, we are going to suspend this presidential campaign,” Ramaswamy told supporters in Iowa on Monday night.

#9 The EU Wants to Spy on Europeans’ Internet Use - Robert Blumen for The Brownstone Institute
The European Commission is an EU legislative body with regulatory authority over digital technology. The EC’s eIDAS Article 45, a proposed regulation, would deliberately weaken areas of internet security that the industry has carefully evolved and hardened for over 25 years. The Article would effectively grant the 27 EU governments vastly expanded surveillance powers over internet use. 

#8 JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Citigroup Risk Losing $24,400,000,000 As Number of Troubled Loans Erupt - Alex Richardson for The Daily HODL

Optimism in the US banking industry is being threatened by a growing pile of bad loans, putting pressure on the sector’s biggest players. Bloomberg analysts say non-performing loans, or loans to debtors that haven’t made a payment in over 90 days, rose to a combined $24.4 billion in the last quarter of 2023 for JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Citigroup, reports the Financial Times. The numbers represent a $6 billion increase year over year. Bank earnings likely shrunk in the final three months of 2023 due to the unpaid loans, plus the rising cost of deposits stemming from higher interest rates, the analysts say. FT reports that the banks are taking several cost-cutting measures to deal with the new business climate. Citigroup is reportedly taking a hit to deal with layoffs and related expenses, while Wells Fargo has already set aside $1 billion for severance packages.

#7 Iowa Republicans Used an App to Transmit Caucus Results. Sound familiar? Miles Parks for NPR

This year, it's Iowa's Republicans who will use a brand-new app designed by an undisclosed third party to transmit results from the precinct level to the state headquarters. There are some critical differences between the two processes, and Republicans in the state say they've been preparing the technology for close to a year, but Jones still sees a disturbing similarity: a lack of transparency. "We have no clue who developed the software, only the customer's assertion that it's someone good," Jones said. "Four years ago, we had that kind of assertion of quality from the Democrats."

#6 Ron DeSantis Accuses Media of Interfering in Iowa Caucuses for Declaring Trump Victory Early - Katie Akin for USA Today

The Associated Press and other major news outlets such as CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC called the race for Trump barely 30 minutes after the caucuses began at 7 p.m. Only a handful of precincts had race results reported by that point. The DeSantis campaign claimed the media was engaging in election interference since not all caucuses had finished. "It is absolutely outrageous that the media would participate in election interference by calling the race before tens of thousands of Iowans even had a chance to vote," communications director Andrew Romeo said. "The media is in the tank for Trump, and this is the most egregious example yet."

#5 Math Favors Donald Trump Prison Sentence, Professor Predicts - Newsweek

Former President Donald Trump is "mathematically likely" to end up in prison due to his various criminal indictments, according to one prominent New York University professor on Saturday. Trump is currently facing four criminal indictments at the federal and state levels, resulting in 91 criminal charges that are the first ever leveled against a former president. Two of the cases, one brought by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and one brought by the Fulton County, Georgia, district attorney's office, revolve around Trump's alleged efforts to contest and overturn the results of the 2020 presidential nomination after he claimed without evidence that the election was stolen from him due to widespread voter fraud.

#4 ‘This Person Should Not Be President’: Kamala Harris Takes Hits in Book on Biden - Martin Pengelly for The Guardian
Considering Kamala Harris’s fitness to take over from Joe Biden should the need arise, a top aide to the former California senator’s 2020 campaign said: “This person should not be president of the United States.” 

iden and Harris are set to form the Democratic ticket again this year. Polling, however, shows widespread concern that at 81, Biden is too old to properly prosecute a potentially historic campaign, with Donald Trump seemingly set to be the Republican nominee once more. Polling also shows low approval numbers for Harris

#3 Houthi Militants Struck a U.S.-Owned Commercial Ship Off the Coast of Yemen - Joe Hernandez for NPR

Houthi rebels in Yemen struck a U.S.-owned and -operated container ship with an anti-ship ballistic missile on Monday as it passed through the Red Sea, the U.S. military said. According to U.S. Central Command, the missile hit the M/V Gibraltar Eagle, a commercial carrier flagged to the Marshall Islands, around 4 p.m. local time after being fired from Houthi-controlled territory in Yemen. No injuries or significant damage were reported.

#2 Major Bank Announces Elimination of 20,000 Jobs After Losses  - Fox Business

The reductions, detailed in the company’s fourth-quarter financial results deck, can be linked to Citi continuing to execute its ongoing reorganization. Citi will axe the positions "over the medium-term," something that should ultimately bring its expenses down by $2-2.5 billion, according to the company. The job cuts will shrink the roughly 200,000-person workforce, excluding Mexico that Citi reported it employed at 2023’s year-end by 10%. When counting Mexico, it directly employed 239,000, according to Citi. The ongoing corporate reshuffling seeks to "speed up decision making, drive increased accountability, and strengthen the focus on clients," Citi said in September. It has entailed making the people running the company’s five businesses direct reports of CEO Jane Fraser and cutting layers of management, among other initiatives.

#1 Americans Can No Longer Afford Their Cars - Giulia Carbonaro for Newsweek

For decades, car ownership has been a trademark of the American lifestyle, with vehicles becoming symbols of freedom, independence, and even rebellion, as well as a necessity. But in 2024, the country's legendary love story with the automobile appears to have reached a crucial point of potential no return, as cars have become unaffordable to millions. Life has generally gotten more expensive in the aftermath of the pandemic, including the cost of cars, car insurance, and car repairs. According to an October report by Market Watch, Americans needed an annual income of at least $100,000 to afford a car, at least if they're following standard budgeting advice, which says you shouldn't spend more than 10 percent of your monthly income on car-related expenses.


 

And Now for Something Special smiley

Active-duty Air Force Officer Crowned 2024 Miss America - Alexx Altman-Devilbiss for Fox Chattanooga
She is the first active-duty servicemember to ever win the title.




 

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