As 2020 comes to a close, we’d like to take a moment to review a very momentous year.
In fact, much of 2020 can be summed up in one word: Covid-19. The global pandemic, which descended quickly and unexpectedly, has reshaped world economies, infecting millions around the globe, shutting down businesses, creating record job losses, and causing market volatility. At the same time, the year saw a contentious presidential election, demonstrations of political protest in support of the Black community, and the seeds of an economic recovery.
Stash has attempted to keep you informed of the rapidly changing events, publishing nearly 300 stories this year to help you navigate the news and keep you up to date about business and your money.
With that in mind, let’s take a look back at some of the biggest stories shaping 2020, as well as some important milestones achieved here at Stash.
Australia on fire. Australia faces the ecological and financial impact of climate change as the country fights enormous bushfires, reportedly made worse by record-breaking heat. The brush fires spread across 25.5 million acres and produced nine times more carbon emissions than California’s record-breaking 2018 fire season.
Taco Bell’s salary boost. The fast-food chain commits to increasing the salaries for the general managers of its restaurants in 2020 in some locations to a whopping $100,000, up from a range of $50,000 to $80,000.
A global health emergency begins. The World Health Organization (WHO) calls Covid-19, the illness caused by a novel coronavirus, a global health emergency. The outbreak of the deadly virus, which began in Wuhan, China, begins spreading to other countries such as Japan, South Korea, and the U.S.
Tesla accelerates. The electric car company’s stock price increases by 20% on February 3, making the biggest jump for Tesla in six years. The spike follows Tesla’s positive fourth-quarter earnings. Tesla remains one of the largest players in the growing electric vehicle industry.
Markets tumble. Major indices from the S&P 500 to the Dow and Nasdaq react to the news of the novel coronavirus, dubbed Covid-19, which appears to be spreading more quickly than people had expected. The S&P 500 and Dow each fall more than 10%. The virus begins interrupting global supply chains stretching from China to the U.S., as tens of millions of people stay home due to a regional quarantine.
1,681,497 new investors joined Stash.1
Congress passes a stimulus package. Congressional leaders negotiate a deal on a $2 trillion economic stimulus package in response to layoffs caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, one of the largest aid packages in U.S. history. Known as the CARES Act, the package includes direct payments of $1,200 for most individuals, expanded unemployment benefits, as well as aid to states, small businesses, struggling industries, and hospitals.
Stashers invested $25.15 at a time, on average.2
T-Mobile officially ties the knot with Sprint. T-Mobile finalizes its $30 billion merger with Sprint two years after talks began about combining the two companies. The new company, which is known as T-Mobile, comes under the leadership of the former Chief Operating Officer Mike Sievert.
Unemployment climbs. In four weeks, the number of unemployed Americans reaches 22 million, erasing all of the employment gains achieved over the previous ten years. The economy added 21.5 million jobs starting mid-2009 until March, 2020, during the longest period of economic expansion in U.S. history.
Hertz declares bankruptcy. As a result of the pandemic, the global car rental chain files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, following the bankruptcy filings of other well-known companies including Neiman Marcus, J. Crew, and J.C. Penney.
Protests across the country. Hundreds of thousands of people take to the streets to protest the police killing of George Floyd, an African American man killed while in police custody in Minneapolis, Minnesota in May. The protests last through the summer, and spark a national conversation about race.
The Big Apple gets back to work. Following a three-month shutdown that ground the city and state economy to a halt due to Covid-19, up to 400,000 New Yorkers in the manufacturing, retail, and food-service industries return to work.
Court victory. In a landmark victory for LGBTQ+ people, the Supreme Court rules that LGBTQ+ people are included in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, protecting millions of LGBTQ+ workers from employer discrimination.
The summer spike. Some states start to roll back reopening plans as the U.S. reaches a record number of new daily Covid-19 cases—more than 45,000 cases—on June 26.
Stashers earned over 14 million pieces of stock with the Stock-Back® Card.3
Job gains reach records. The U.S. adds 4.8 million jobs in June, 2020, the biggest gain since 1939, according to reports, bringing the unemployment rate down to 11.1%., from its April peak of 14.7%. The jobless rate remains significantly higher than its pre-pandemic level.
The gold bug. The price of gold reaches a record high of $1,944 per ounce on July 27. The previous record price of gold was $1,921 per ounce, set in 2011.
Apple serves up slices. Apple announces a 4-for-1 stock split. The split means that investors will get three additional shares of Apple’s stock for every one share that they own. The share price will also decrease to roughly $100 from its then-current price of approximately $400.
Tesla splits. Electric carmaker Tesla announces a 5-for-1 stock split. Investors will get fiveshares of Tesla stock for each one that they own.
TikTok heads to court. Video-creation and sharing app TikTok, which is owned by Chinese company ByteDance, reportedly plans to sue the Trump administration over an executive order banning TikTok in the U.S.
Stashers set aside more than $624 million with Auto-Stash.4
TikTok and Oracle reach a deal. Software and cloud-computing company Oracle reportedly agrees to buy the U.S. operations of video-creation app TikTok. Microsoft and Walmart had previously been frontrunners to acquire operations of the app from its Chinese parent ByteDance.
Supreme Court vacancy. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the second woman ever to serve on the high court’s bench, dies at age 87 from complications related to pancreatic cancer.
Max to fly again in Europe. The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) says that Boeing’s 737 Max could begin flying in Europe before the end of 2020 following changes made to the plane’s anti-stall system. The plane, previously Boeing’s fastest seller, had been grounded globally after two crashes involving the aviation system killed more than 300 people in March, 2019.
Google does not pass go. The Department of Justice announces that it will sue Google for allegedly maintaining a monopoly over internet searches and search advertising.
Biden wins. Former Vice President Joe Biden wins the 2020 presidential election on November 8, surpassing the 270 electoral votes needed for the presidency after winning in Pennsylvania.
Good news for the vaccine. Pfizer and Moderna announce that their Covid-19 vaccines are 95% and 90% effective respectively in late stage trials. Their vaccines are created with something called messenger RNA, which has never been tested in humans before.
Tesla joins the big leagues. S&P Dow Jones Indices announces that Tesla will join the S&P 500after the electric car company reported five consecutive profitable quarters. Valued at approximately $400 billion, Tesla is one of the largest companies to ever join the index.
737 Max gets the nod from the FAA. The Federal Aviation Association (FAA) approves Boeing’s 737 Max for domestic passenger flights again in the U.S., following the plane’s 2019 grounding globally for its faulty aviation system.
The #1 places Stashers earned Stock-Back® were Netflix, Walmart, and Spotify.5
Movie theaters move in. Media conglomerate WarnerMedia says that it will release all of its 2021 movies on HBO Max, as well as in theaters, due to pandemic restrictions and closures.
Vaccination nation. An intensive-care nurse in Queens, New York receives the first dose of Pfizer and BioNTech’s Covid-19 vaccine, as medical centers around the U.S. began the largest inoculation program in the nation’s history, following emergency authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
President-elect Biden. The electoral college meets and affirms Joseph R. Biden’s win as the 46th president of the U.S.