Airbnb competitor Sonder reaches unicorn status in latest fundraising round

Fed's Williams says he does not see elevated U.S. recession chance

ALBANY, N.Y., July 11 (Reuters) – New York Federal Reserve President John Williams said on Thursday that he does not see an elevated near-term chance of a U.S. recession but that the central bank has to be ready to adjust rates if needed.

Williams spoke at an event at the University at Albany – State University of New York. (Reporting by Trevor Hunnicutt Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

U.S. runs June budget deficit of $8 billion

The numbers: The federal government’s June budget deficit narrowed to $8 billion, the Treasury Department reported Thursday, down nearly 90% from the same month a year ago.

The much-lower monthly figure was affected by shifts in the timing of certain federal payments, as well as receipts. Without those shifts the deficit would have been $55 billion, wider than June 2018’s $30 billion shortfall.

What happened: The government spent $342 billion in June, a decrease of 12% from last year. Receipts were $334 billion, up 6% from the same month a year ago.

The big picture: The budget deficit for the fiscal year to date is widening compared to the first nine months of fiscal 2018, as spending has climbed 7% and receipts have grown by just 3%. The Congressional Budget Office is forecasting a full-year deficit of nearly $900 billion, with both spending and revenues projected to rise but the gap between them persisting.

Financial markets, meanwhile, show no signs of worry about the expanding deficits, as the yield on the 10-year Treasury TMUBMUSD10Y, +2.78%  has fallen to 2.12% from as high as 3.23% in November. On Thursday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.60%  crossed 27,000 for the first time.

Twitter Goes Down Again In Widespread Outage; Cause Identified – Update

UPDATED with cause: Twitter is experiencing a broad outages of its services, the social media site said Thursday, saying on its official status page that the problem is due to an internal configuration change that is now being fixed.

“Some people may be able to access Twitter again and we’re working to make sure Twitter is available to everyone as quickly as possible,” it wrote in its update.

The side DownDetector reported the issues began just before 3 PM ET impacting Twitter’s website and Android and iPad apps. Most queries on the social media platform were resulting in an error page for users all over the world.

It’s the second notable outage for Twitter this month. The platform experienced temporary outages relating to DM delivery and notifications on July 3, the same day Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp users saw those services down for most of the day.

Todaay’s outage comes the same day President Donald Trump is hosting a Social Media Summit at the White House that does not include the biggest social media networks — including Twitter. The gathering is mostly of conservative influencers Trump follows who have complained that they are consistently marginalized on the major platforms.

Twitter recently announced that disclaimers would be attached to tweets from world leaders that violate the site’s community standards rules. More recently, a New York appellate court upheld an earlier decision that Trump violated the First Amendment by blocking Twitter users.

U.S. Xpress Enterprises stock falls 7% after trucking company cuts outlook

Shares of U.S. Xpress Enterprises Inc. USX, -3.77% fell more than 7% in the extended session Thursday after the trucking company lowered its expectations for the second quarter, saying that market conditions "continue to underperform original expectations" and there’s no seasonal boost. U.S. Xpress said it expects second-quarter adjusted operating ratio to about 97.5%, versus a previous expectations of "improvement" from the 95.7% adjusted operating ratio in the first quarter. The company also lowered its capital-expenditure budget for the year to betwee $110 million and $130 million, compared with a prior guidance of $170 million and $190 million. It will defer tractor deliveries and cut the planned replacement of leased equipment with owned, the company said. "Our balance sheet remains solid, and we anticipate remaining comfortably within our financial covenants and liquidity target through the balance of the year and beyond," the company said. Shares of U.S. Xpress ended the regular trading day 3.8%.

Hookipa Pharma jumps 40% after FDA approval of clinical tests

Hookipa Pharma Inc. HOOK, -2.34% shares jumped 40% in late trading Thursday after the company announced that the Food and Drug Administration approved a study of the company’s immunotherapy approach to certain cancers. Hookipa had asked the FDA for clearance on a phase 1/2 study of HB-201, and with its approval will now start its first clinical trial in immuno-oncology, the company said. "With the FDA’s clearance of our IND application we have achieved an important milestone advancing HB-201 into clinical development," Chief Executive Joern Aldag said in the announcement. Hookipa, which went public in April, closed Thursday at $6.68, but shares neared $9.50 in after-hours trading following the announcement.

Airbnb competitor Sonder reaches unicorn status in latest fundraising round

  • Sonder, an Airbnb competitor, said it has closed a $210 million Series D funding round. This brings the firm’s total valuation north of $1 billion, with $400 million raised.
  • The company said it quadrupled its rentable space since last year and is projecting $400 million in revenue this year, up four-fold from 2018.
  • Airbnb’s former CFO, Laurence Tosi, is joining Sonder’s board. Tosi left Airbnb in 2018 after reports of internal clashes with CEO Brian Chesky.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Short-term apartment rental company Sonder said on Thursday it has closed a $210 million Series D funding round that brought the Airbnb competitor’s valuation north of $1 billion.

Fundraising now totals $400 million, and the latest round was led by new investorsValor Equity Partners, Westcap, andTao Capital Partners with participation fromFidelity Investments, Atreides Capital, ARod Corp,Spark Capital and Greenoaks Capital.

Sonder said it now has 8,500 rentable spaces in 20 cities, up from 2,200 in August 2018 in 12 cities.