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🎙🇲🇱 "Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly." - See who said it and why it matters at the bottom.
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
The novel coronavirus has the potential to be as damaging to the global economy as the U.S.-China trade war, economists tell Axios, and if not contained could wreak havoc on businesses across the globe, with great uncertainty over how bad things could get.
Why it matters: The epicenter of the virus is China, which is now the world's top trading nation and largest commodity buyer, and the no. 1 trading partner for many of the world's biggest economies, including Germany and Japan, which both are already suffering from anemic growth.
State of play: "If this virus begins to mutate rapidly so that it becomes increasingly more difficult to find a cure for it, that would be extremely alarming," Bernard Baumohl, chief global economist at the Economic Outlook Group, tells Axios.
The big picture: The global manufacturing sector is already in recession in advanced countries like the U.S. and eurozone, and the coronavirus outbreak is threatening the services sector.
Between the lines: Fed chair Jerome Powell demurred action from the U.S. central bank at last week's January policy meeting, but his hand (and that of other central bankers) may be forced, Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist at tax and consulting firm RSM, tells Axios.
Yes, but: The fact that the outbreak originated in China may just be what helps keeps it contained, Foster Finley, global co-leader of the transportation and infrastructure practice AlixPartners, tells Axios.
Go deeper: What's happening with the coronavirus
The Shanghai Composite Index fell by nearly 8%, losing around $375 billion in value and touching a one-year low in the first day of trading since the Lunar New Year holiday. (Wall Street Journal)
China's central bank lowered reverse repo rates and injected a record 1.2 trillion yuan ($173.8 billion) into markets to ensure ample liquidity Monday. (Reuters)
The number of U.S. farm bankruptcies rose for the fifth straight year, jumping 20% in 2019 to an eight-year high. (Reuters)
Manufacturing activity in the Midwest sank last month from its already weak levels in December to the worst reading since December 2015. (MarketWatch)
Strong earnings reports from buzzy tech companies like Amazon and Microsoft have dominated headlines, but the numbers for the broader market remain negative.
What's happening: With 45% of S&P companies having reported earnings, FactSet estimates an overall earnings decline of 0.3% for the quarter.
By the numbers: The percentage of companies that have reported actual EPS above estimates is 69%, below the five-year average.
Between the lines: IT and consumer discretionary companies have delivered the greatest positive earnings surprises, offsetting weakness in the industrials sector.
Axios' Ben Geman writes: CNBC money pundit Jim Cramer is an unlikely new avatar for climate activists with his take on Big Oil's financial future. In short, he thinks they're screwed.
Catch up fast: Cramer made waves Friday with his response to ExxonMobil and Chevron's glum earnings reports...
Where it stands: The comments excited divestment advocates like Naomi Klein, Bill McKibben, and Sen. Bernie Sanders, who seized on the comments from an analyst outside the activist ranks.
The big picture: Friday's results sent the stocks of Exxon — already at a decade-low after several tough years — and Chevron downward. It's just the latest sign of the sector's waning market performance.
My thought bubble: The oil companies are underperforming, so they're much easier to drop. And because the Dow and S&P 500 haven't dropped them, firms and asset managers can outperform the market and claim it's all an effort to be woke on the environment and sustainability.
Axios' Rashaan Ayesh and Sara Fischer report: More advertisers bought pricey Super Bowl ads this year to sell you on their values, rather than their products.
Driving the news: Advertisers ranging from beverage to skin care companies aired ads that featured values ranging from social justice to support for small business.
The big picture: Most sports fans would have preferred to keep politics out of the Super Bowl, according to a Morning Consult survey.
John Mercer Langston was the first black man to become a lawyer, passing the bar in Ohio in 1854. When he was elected to the post of Town Clerk for Brownhelm, Ohio, in 1855 Langston became one of the first African Americans ever elected to public office in America.
Langston was also the great-uncle of Langston Hughes, the legendary poet of the Harlem Renaissance, who said the quote above.