On The Money — Democrats push to fix debt ceiling during lame duck

A Democratic-led push for a bipartisan fix to the nation’s debt ceiling is meeting resistance from Senate Republicans.

We’ll also look at the recent slowdown in rent growth nationwide, the decrease in new home construction and more.

🎤 But first, more bad news for Swifties.

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GOP resisting Dems’ push for debt ceiling fix

A Democratic-led push for a bipartisan fix to the nation’s debt ceiling during the lame duck session getting a chilly reception from Senate Republicans.

Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) told reporters this week that he’d like to “get a debt ceiling done in this work period.” But Schumer also insisted the matter garner GOP support.

  • While some Senate GOP leaders haven’t ruled out a compromise with Democrats to address the debt limit during the lame-duck session, they’ve also expressed some skepticism about the prospects of a deal.  

  • Sen. John Thune (S.D.), the No. 2 Senate Republican, told The Hill on Tuesday that the chances of bipartisan action on the debt limit before January are “probably not good.” Sen. Roy Blunt (Mo.), a member of GOP leadership, also said he thinks the idea is “less likely.” 

  • Other Republicans have also expressed resistance to the idea of working with Democrats to act on the debt limit absent broader consideration about the country’s finances.

The background: Democrats have ramped up calls for bipartisan action on the debt limit before January amid growing concerns over a potential showdown next year, when Congress is projected to usher in a Republican-led House.

The push follows reporting that House Republicans are considering using the fiscal deadline as a leverage point to secure potential reforms to programs like Social Security that have already generated strong pushback from Democrats.

Aris has more here.

SLOW DOWN

Rent growth slows again, hits lowest level in 18 months

Rent growth slowed across the U.S. again last month as the once red-hot housing market continues to cool.

Nationally, rents increased by 4.7 percent in October, marking the slowest pace of rental growth in 18 months, according to a new report from Realtor.com.

  • Still, rents are up by 23.5 percent from 2019, and prices in the top 50 U.S. metropolitan regions remain above $1,700 per month. 

  • Additionally, two-thirds of renters who have been in their units for at least
    12 months have seen rent increases, up from 52.2 percent in July.

“While it’s still a bit early to say that we’re officially on a downward trajectory for rent prices, the data shows a promising return toward normal seasonal slowdowns and suggests that the astronomical price gains of the past several years may be behind us,” said Realtor.com Chief Economist Danielle Hale.

Adam Barnes has more here.

TECH TROUBLE

Here are the Big Tech companies that have announced layoffs in 2022

Big Tech companies have announced tens of thousands of layoffs in recent weeks amid stock losses, jumbo interest rate hikes implemented by the Federal Reserve and consumers’ pivot away from goods in the aftermath of the worst of the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta, announced 11,000 layoffs earlier this month, after the company’s stock fell 66 percent since the start of the year. 

  • Under Elon Musk, Twitter laid off half of its workforce, including most of its top executives.

Amazon, Microsoft and Lyft have also let go of employees amid falling stock values and a grim economic outlook.

Gianna Melillo has the list here.

HOMEBUILDING SLUMP

New home construction falls again in October amid soaring interest rates

New home construction fell again last month as soaring interest rates continued to weaken demand in the housing market.

  • Housing starts declined by 4.2 percent from September to 1.43 million units, according to Census Bureau data released on Thursday.   

  • The Federal Reserve’s series of interest rate hikes targeting rising inflation have led to high mortgage rates that are pushing prospective buyers out of the market.

“As the current affordability crisis burns on, builders are feeling demand for new homes slipping further away, depressing confidence in their ability to sell their completed projects at the prices they need,” Zillow senior economist Nicole Bachaud wrote in an analysis.

Adam Barnes has more here.

Good to Know

Senate Democrats urged the Federal Trade Commission Thursday to investigate Twitter over potential consumer protection violations after changes made to the platform in recent weeks under the helm of new CEO Elon Musk.

The senators said “alarming steps” taken under Musk’s control, including allowing users to pay for verification check marks and laying off key staff, undermined the integrity and safety of the platform and may have already violated the FTC’s consent decree for the company.

Other items we’re keeping an eye on:

  • The new CEO of collapsed cryptocurrency exchange FTX blasted the company in a recent court filing for a “complete failure of corporate controls” before he assumed management.

  • Ticketmaster on Thursday canceled the public sale of tickets for an upcoming Taylor Swift tour after customers reported widespread issues purchasing tickets during a pre-sale event.

  • A federal court approved a settlement between the Department of Education and around 200,000 student loan borrowers on Wednesday for $6 billion in loan relief.

That’s it for today. Thanks for reading and check out The Hill’s Finance page for the latest news and coverage. We’ll see you tomorrow.

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