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Labor Secretary Marty Walsh at an April 2 White House press briefing. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Uber, Lyft, and DoorDash shares dropped Thursday after Labor Secretary Marty Walsh announced support for gig workers receiving benefits as full employees, CNBC reports.

Why it matters: Walsh's stance reflects growing pressure from the Biden administration to regulate the growing gig economy.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Kia Kokalitcheva: The Biden administration has been clear about its pro-labor views and companies have been anticipating it.

  • What to watch from the companies: A strategy similar to what Uber, Lyft, Postmates, Doordash, and Instacart used in California — avoiding reclassification by codifying some combination of additional benefits (although that bargain has been criticized as leaving workers with the short end of the stick).

What he's saying: “We are looking at it but in a lot of cases gig workers should be classified as employees... in some cases they are treated respectfully and in some cases they are not and I think it has to be consistent across the board,” Walsh told Reuters in an exclusive interview.

  • “These companies are making profits and revenue and I’m not (going to) begrudge anyone for that because that’s what we are about in America. But we also want to make sure that success trickles down to the worker,” he said.

Go deeper

Lyft has its first operating profit (but remains unprofitable)

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Ride-hailing company Lyft posted its first-ever profit on an adjusted EBITDA basis on Tuesday, along with $765 million in revenue for Q2 and a loss per share of $0.76.

Why it matters: The company now expects to reach full-year adjusted EBITDA profitability this year. With investor pressure to see gig economy companies get in the black, Lyft said in 2019 it would reach this milestone by the last quarter of 2021 (and that was before the pandemic forced everyone home for several months).

1 hour ago - World

Iran agrees to resume Vienna nuclear talks in November

Ali Bagheri (R) with Enrique Mora in Tehran on Oct. 14. Photo: Iranian Foreign Ministry handout via Getty

Iran's new chief nuclear negotiator said following a meeting in Brussels on Wednesday that Iran would resume negotiations in Vienna before the end of November, with the exact date to be set next week.

Why it matters: The Vienna talks have been frozen since Iran's new hardline president, Ebrahim Raisi, was elected in June. This is the most direct commitment from Raisi's government to return to the negotiating table.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Democrats' billionaires tax explained

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

There is now legislative language behind the push to tax American billionaires on unrealized capital gains, as Sen. Ron Wyden last night released his 107-page plan.

Why it matters: This would be a sea change in U.S. tax policy, which has only applied to realized gains (otherwise known as income).

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