• Gucci to start accepting crypto payments in some U.S. stores. The high end luxury brand is now accepting crypto at a handful of stores in the US in Los Angeles, New York City and Las Vegas. Gucci said it would accept various digital assets such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin, Shiba Inu and certain kinds of stablecoins.

  • Tesla confirms Vale nickel deal. Tesla Inc. will buy nickel from mining giant Vale SA among other metal-supply contract. Tesla listed Vale as a direct supplier of nickel for batteries, sourcing the metal from an integrated mine and refining site in Canada. The report also detailed agreements with producers such as Albemarle Corp., Livent Corp. and China’s Sichuan Yahua Industrial Group Co. for supplies of lithium.
    Read more here.

  • Amazon fires some managers at New York warehouse. The JFK8 facility is Amazon’s largest in Staten Island, and workers there voted last month to establish the tech giant’s first union in the U.S. A spokeswoman for Amazon confirmed the company had made management changes at the facility after evaluating operations and leadership over the past several weeks. Read more here.

  • Investors rush into defensive ETFs as market turbulence grows. Net inflows into defensive ETFs have totaled $50 billion this year, according to Morningstar data through April. That sum has already outpaced the group’s $42 billion in inflows for all of 2021 and is on track to top 2020’s total of $75 billion as well. Investors want safety, they want security, and they want to go somewhere where their money is protected.

  • As Sun Belt relocations increase, home prices follow. Cities like Phoenix, Tampa, Fla., and Atlanta are popular destinations for relocation thus making rapid price increases. Buyers in Tampa, Fla., need to earn $67,353 annually to afford the metro’s typical monthly payment of $1,684—up nearly 48% compared to a year ago. That is the biggest jump compared to any other U.S. city, according to a new analysis from Redfin.


  • Sellers may nab highest home price premiums in May. The spring and summer months are the best times of year to obtain the highest home seller profits, according to ATTOM’s analysis, based on home sale trends over the past 11 years. The top 15 days to sell are led by May 23, May 27, May 16, May 20, and May 19, according to the study. All five of those dates offer a seller premium between 15% and 18%, according to the study.

  • Starbucks to launch an NFT-based membership community. With a focus on creating and selling ownership to a series of branded NFT collectibles, Starbucks hopes to establish a new kind of customer engagement. Versatility for customers and security are among a few challenges the company could face. Although the details on the project seem a bit vague for now, Starbucks executives are leaning on the company’s history to raise confidence.

  • Mercedes races into NFTs with new F1 art. The special NFT art featured on the vehicle’s rear wings are unique designs from artist Mad Dog Jones. Along with the auction of these groundbreaking NFTs, Mercedes plans to give out 2,500 free NFT “ticket stubs” at the majority of the F1 races, along with a 1,000 limited edition NFT mint at a few select races. Read more here.

  • Diesel fuel is in short supply as prices surge. The jump in prices comes on the heels of growing demand as economies around the world get back to business. This, in turn, has pushed inventories to historic lows. Europe’s move away from dependency on Russian energy is hastening the rapid price appreciation. The tightness in global supply will be exacerbated by the EU’s proposal to ban Russian oil imports. Read more here.

  • Google is raising pay and revamping employee reviews. Google is overhauling its performance evaluation process, implementing changes that will result in increased salaries, as the company tries to ease tension between employees and leadership on the issue of compensation. The company’s latest annual survey showed employees were increasingly dissatisfied with their pay compared what they could make elsewhere.

  • Market handicappers see another 5% to 8% downside if key level for the S&P 500 fails. Investor attention has turned decisively toward quantifying the risk rather than projecting quick reward. Leuthold Group shows that when an S&P 500 drop has gone past that 19% loss level, it has tended to overshoot lower by a lot and not a little. A 19% to 20% decline from the January peak above 4800 would take the S&P between 3850 and 3900. Read more here.
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