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WH press secretary replies to question about stock market concerns: ‘We have the first female treasury secretary’

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When asked on Wednesday about fears regarding the stock market in light of recent developments with GameStop’s shares, White House press secretary Jen Psaki responded by saying: “We have the first female treasury secretary.”

In the course of more than a week—in an incredibly complex situation—the stock price of the declining video game vendor GameStop soared by as much as 770%. In short, after some influential users in a Reddit community dedicated to the stock market called r/WallStreetBets encouraged many other users into purchasing GameStop stock through equity and calls, which dramatically drove up its stock price, as explained by TIME.

“Is the White House concerned about the stock market activity we’re seeing around GameStop and now with some other stocks as well?” a reporter asked Psaki. “Have there been any conversations with the [Securities and Exchange Commission] about how to proceed?”

“Well, I’m also happy to repeat that we have the first female treasury secretary and a team that’s surrounding her and often questions about markets,” Psaki responded. “We’ll send [you] to them. But our team is, of course, our economic team, including Secretary [Janet] Yellen and others, are monitoring the situation.”

On Monday, the U.S. Senate confirmed Janet Yellen to the role of treasury secretary.

Psaki went on to say that the GameStop situation is “a good reminder, though, that the stock market isn’t the only measure of the health of our economy. It doesn’t reflect how working- and middle-class families are doing.”

In response to the situation, TD Ameritrade on Wednesday restricted trading for the company and has sent fears down the spines of some on Wall Street.

“In the interest of mitigating risk for our company and clients, we have put in place several restrictions on some transactions in $GME, $AMC and other securities,” a spokeswoman for TD Ameritrade told the website Market Watch. “We made these decisions out of an abundance of caution amid unprecedented market conditions and other factors.”

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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White House Confirms It Is Looking Into Shutting Down Oil Pipeline Amid Fuel Crisis

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Gas Pipeline

The Biden administration confirmed that it is considering shutting down an oil pipeline in Michigan despite the ongoing fuel crisis in the country.

“Revoking the permits for the [Line 5] pipeline that delivers oil from western Canada across Wisconsin, the Great Lakes and Michigan and into Ontario, would please environmentalists who have urged the White House to block fossil fuel infrastructure, but it would aggravate a rift with Canada and could exacerbate a spike in energy prices that Republicans are already using as a political weapon,” Politico Pro reported. “Killing a pipeline while U.S. gasoline prices are the highest in years could be political poison for Biden, who has seen his approval rating crash in recent months.”

Fox News reporter Peter Doocy asked about the report during Monday’s press briefing, asking, “why is the administration now considering shutting down the Line 5 pipeline from Canada to Michigan?”

“So, Peter, that is inaccurate,” Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre claimed. “That is not right. So, any reporting indicating that some decision has been made, again, is not accurate. … So, again, I would — it is inaccurate what you just stated, but —”

“What’s inaccurate?” Doocy asked.

“The reporting about us wanting to shut down the Line 5,” Jean-Pierre said.

“I didn’t say ‘wanting.’  I said, is it being studied right now?  Is the administration studying the impact of shutting down the Line 5?”

“Yeah. Yes, we are. We are,” Jean-Pierre admitted.

 

The news comes as gas prices have reached their highest since 2014, when Biden was vice president, and are currently about 50% higher than they were when Biden entered office.

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