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Wednesday: Below the Fold

Americans suffer largest pay cut in 25 years, homeowners have lost $1.5 trillion in equity, and more.

Cross-Examination

  • Americans suffer largest pay cut in 25 years due to Bidenflation: Far from getting the nation’s 40-year-high inflation under control, Joe Biden and the Democrats have only acted to ensure that it remains high. And the result of the sustained sky-high inflation, currently sitting at 8.2%, equates to the American worker effectively taking a significant pay cut. Despite wages increasing by an average of 5.1%, inflation has entirely eaten up that growth and then some, as Americans are experiencing what amounts to the biggest cut in their pay in over 25 years. Wages with inflation accounted for have dropped 8.6%. Bidenflation is literally making Americans across the board poorer. As the Dallas Fed observes, “While the past 25 years have witnessed episodes that show either a greater incidence or larger magnitude of real wage declines, the current time period is unparalleled in terms of the challenge employed workers face.” This is Biden’s America.

  • Homeowners have lost $1.5T in equity in six months: Just last year, the housing market was a seller’s dream, as prices climbed to dizzying heights and homes sold like hotcakes. But today that hot market has cooled considerably. According to a recent report from mortgage software and analytics company Black Knight, American homeowners have lost a whopping $1.5 trillion in equity since May. Black Knight data and analytics president Ben Graboske observed, “In the span of just three months, U.S. mortgage holders saw a total of $1.3T in newly acquired equity evaporate.” He further noted, “That is — by far — the largest quarterly decline on record by dollar value and the largest since 2009 on a percentage basis." The average homeowner has lost $30,000 in equity since May. However, to put that in perspective, the average homeowner has gained over $92,000 in equity since prior to the pandemic. Unfortunately, the number of homeowners who purchased their homes within the last two years and are now underwater on their mortgage has risen to 500,000, representing roughly 3.6% of all mortgages. Despite the drop in home equity, home prices have yet to fall nearly as significantly.

  • Meta lays off over 11,000 employees: The Big Tech firm Meta, which is the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, laid off 11,000 employees this week. CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg explained in a letter to employees: "I want to take accountability for these decisions and for how we got here. I know this is tough for everyone, and I’m especially sorry to those impacted.” The 11,000 laid-off employees account for approximately 13% of Meta’s workforce. The significant layoffs follow Meta’s profit falling by 50% last quarter. The company, valued at over a $1 trillion last year, has seen its stock value plummet by 70% from that high. Zuckerberg, for his part, is blaming himself, saying that he attempted to grow the company too quickly and too big during the pandemic when online commerce was spiking: “Unfortunately, this did not play out the way I expected. I got this wrong, and I take responsibility for that.” Zuckerberg has been working to stem the bleeding for months, as he first began cutting back on company perks, then enacted a hiring freeze in September, and now he’s downsizing the staff. But Meta is far from the only tech company to be negatively impacted by economic headwinds.

Headlines

  • Nicole to strike Florida as a hurricane tonight with storm surge, strong winds, flooding rain (TWC)

  • Senate control likely to come down to Georgia runoff, in pricey replay of early 2021 (Daily Wire)

  • Left-wing states vote for “right” to abortion in midterm defeat for pro-lifers (LifeSiteNews)

  • Michigan adopts controversial new voting rules that will jeopardize election security (Daily Signal)

  • AOC-led group of far-left lawmakers adds new members (Fox News)

  • Ron DeSantis on his historic blowout victory: “Florida is where woke goes to die” (Daily Wire)

  • Alabama, Tennessee, Vermont remove slavery loopholes from constitutions, Louisiana does not (Fox News)

  • Dems blow nearly $200 million on perennial losers Beto O'Rourke, Stacey Abrams (Free Beacon)

  • House Republicans to push nuclear power, natural gas at COP27 (WaPo)

  • Humor: Beto: “Maybe the real electoral victory was the three electoral races I’ve lost along the way” (Babylon Bee)

For more editors’ choice headlines, click here.

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