Amex reported that its global consumer billed business fell 20% year-over-year (YoY) in Q2 2020 after dropping 2% YoY in Q1. Business Insider reports the coronavirus pandemic has increasingly hurt its volume. Amex's plunge is due to a precipitous drop in spending on travel and entertainment (T&E), which plummeted nearly 100% YoY in April. T&E was still down about 70% YoY in the first half of July. Meanwhile, Amex's non-T&E spending grew 5% YoY in the first half of July.
Business Insider reports that Jack Ma's Ant Group is looking to raise its funding target to $35 billion through its initial-public-offering. Ant is Alibaba's fintech arm and China's dominant mobile-payments service. Ant raised its valuation to $250 billion from $225 billion. Previously, the company expected to raise $30 billion. When Ant goes public, its listing will likely be the largest IPO in the world.
Wages in the US have not kept up with the pace of growth in the gross domestic product, or GDP, as they used to in the 1950s and 1960s. In fact, a new report finds that the median salary would have been as high as $102,000 for a full-time employee if wages increased at the same pace as GDP. According to Business Insider, the median income right now is half that, at $50,000. The average wage of 44% of workers before the pandemic was as low as $18,000.
While the investing gap between black and white Americans is narrowing, it's still significant. What's more, there is no one single reason for discrepancy. In 2015, 67% of black households earning $50,000 or more invested in stocks or mutual funds, versus 86% of similar white households. And according to Business Insider, Duke University researchers say the median black household holds just 10% of the wealth of the median white household.
British newspaper The Guardian analyzed user engagement with six popular anti-vaccination Facebook pages from July to August. According to Business Insider, the number of users engaging with 'anti-vaxxer' content more than tripled during that period, from 12,000 to 42,000. Facebook said the analysis wasn't reflective of the platform as a whole. The social media platform added that it took down 7 million pieces of misinformation related to COVID-19 between April and June.
Business Insider reports that US stocks are on course to close lower for a third consecutive week. The S&P 500 has lost nearly 9% since early September's record high. That decline was mainly driven by losses in the technology sector. But Goldman Sachs, Wells Fargo and Deutsche Bank are upbeat the US stock market sell-off is mostly over. Goldman Sachs kept its end-of year S&P 500 target to 3,600 by year end.