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Associated Press

Between Election Day and March 1st, the S&P 500 rose nearly 11%, but has fallen 0.17% in the roughly three weeks since. This loss of momentum indicates that investors are beginning to worry about the fate of corporate tax reform, as the debate over healthcare is revealing broader divisions among Republicans in Washington, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Why it matters: Corporate tax cuts are the simplest way for Washington to cheer up Wall Street — Goldman Sachs recently estimated that the House GOP tax reform plan would boost S&P 500 income by 10%, more than enough to justify the recent run up in stocks. But a closer look at the data shows that investors have lost some confidence in the Republican Party's ability to shepherd major corporate tax relief into law. Smaller firms, which generally pay higher corporate taxes, have suffered in recent weeks, while large banks and utilities have fared better, boosted by unrelated forces like higher interest rates.

What's next: Stock markets can likely handle a delay of corporate tax reform, as long as Wall Street still believes it's coming eventually. Ian Shepherdson of Pantheon Economics assumes that deficit hawkery will prevent the GOP from coming together on a tax plan, but that the Trump Administration will be able to pass a deficit-funded tax and spending program, worth 1% of GDP, with the help of red-state Democrats. But this sort of optimism can only hold out so long before White House must show that it can shepherd one coalition or another to pass business-friendly reforms.

Go deeper

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
2 hours ago - Technology

TikTok gets more time (again)

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The White House is again giving TikTok's Chinese parent company more to satisfy national security concerns, rather than initiating legal action, a source familiar with the situation tells Axios.

The state of play: China's ByteDance had until Friday to resolve issues raised by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS), which is chaired by Treasury secretary Steve Mnuchin. This was the company's third deadline, with CFIUS having provided two earlier extensions.

Federal judge orders Trump administration to restore DACA

DACA recipients and their supporters rally outside the U.S. Supreme Court on June 18. Photo: Drew Angerer via Getty

A federal judge on Friday ordered the Trump administration to fully restore the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, giving undocumented immigrants who arrived in the U.S. as children a chance to petition for protection from deportation.

Why it matters: DACA was implemented under former President Obama, but President Trump has sought to undo the program since taking office. Friday’s ruling will require Department of Homeland Security officers to begin accepting applications starting Monday and guarantee that work permits are valid for two years.

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Fauci says he accepted Biden's offer to be chief medical adviser "on the spot" — The recovery needs rocket fuel.
  2. Health: CDC: It's time for "universal face mask use" — Death rates rising across the country — Study: Increased testing can reduce transmission.
  3. Economy: U.S. economy adds 245,000 jobs in November as recovery slows — America's hidden depression: K-shaped recovery threatens Biden administration.
  4. Cities: Bay Area counties to enact stay-at-home order ahead of state mandate
  5. Vaccine: What vaccine trials still need to do.
  6. World: UN warns "2021 is literally going to be catastrophic"
  7. 🎧 Podcast: Former FDA chief Rob Califf on the vaccine approval process.