How Washington"s outdoor economy became a billion-dollar business

The peak camping season in Washington state runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day and summer weekends are largely booked out well in advance......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournals5 hr. 3 min. ago Related News

McCarthy and Biden"s debt-ceiling deal could hurt student-loan borrowers and people on food stamps — and cost some Americans their jobs

After months of stalemate, Biden and McCarthy finally reached a debt-ceiling deal. It needs to be signed into law before a default on June 5. Kevin McCarthy with President Joe Biden at an Oval Office meeting on the debt ceiling on May 22.Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images Biden and McCarthy finally reached a deal to raise the debt ceiling on Saturday night. The deal strengthens work requirements on welfare programs and codifies the end of the student-loan payment pause. The agreement needs to be signed into law before the US defaults as early as June 5. An agreement to raise the debt ceiling between House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and the White House will end the pause on student loan payments, make it more difficult for some low-income Americans to obtain food stamps, and reduce government spending by billions in the coming years. On Saturday night, McCarthy and President Joe Biden finally reached a deal to raise the debt ceiling before the country is set to hurdle toward a default as early as June 5. This agreement came after months of stalemate due to both parties at odds over the best approach to raise the debt ceiling — Biden wanted the eventual deal to be a clean increase, without any spending cuts attached, while McCarthy refused to stave off a default without spending cuts on many Democratic priorities.The deal the two sides reached required compromise — a New York Times analysis estimated the deal would cut spending by $136 billion through fiscal year 2025. This is a notable reduction from McCarthy's initial $4.5 trillion spending cut proposal, and it includes new work requirements on government programs, along with codifying the end of student-loan payment pause. The pause is currently set to expire 60 days after June 30 or 60 days after the Supreme Court issues a final decision on the legality of Biden's broad student-debt relief plan, whichever happens first.The deal also alters Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program work requirements for those between 18-54 who do no not have children and are able to work. In order to receive SNAP, these adults must work or be enrolled in job training for at least 80 hours a month. However, the deal also helps expand access to this program for other vulnerable groups, like veterans and unhoused people, according to the Times.Although the agreement in principle means that economically disastrous consequences will be avoided, Moody's Analytics estimate that the cuts in spending could lead to a reduction in employment by 120,000 jobs by the end of 2024. The financial intelligence agency added that the new work requirements for income support programs could additionally result in tens of thousands of lost jobs. "Not the greatest timing for fiscal restraint as the economy is fragile and recession risks are high," Mark Zandi, who runs the Moody's Analytics Econ Twitter account, wrote on Friday.—MoodysAnalytics ECON (@economics_ma) May 26, 2023 Zandi noted, however, that the changes would be "manageable." And while the deal is a blow to some everyday Americans relying on government programs, experts who spoke with the Times agreed.Unlike in 2011, when a similar deal was struck between then-President Barack Obama and former Speaker John Boehner to cut down trillions in government spending over a decade, economists say the deal is not aggressive enough to completely tank the economy — even as it currently stands.Jason Furman, a Harvard economist, told the Times that while the 2011 debt deal resulted in stagnant economic growth for a country recovering from the 2008 recession, the cuts in government spending could help control interest rates, which have been rising in response to skyrocketing inflation."The economy still needs cooling off, and this takes the pressure off interest rates in accomplishing that cooling off," Furman told the Times.Now, Congress needs to act quickly to get this legislation signed into law before the government runs out of money to pay its bills. This signals a consequential week ahead for lawmakers — especially as some Democrats and Republicans are not thrilled with the compromise that resulted in the final agreement. Still, it's vital a bill to raise the debt ceiling gets signed into law because a default could mean a recessions — and millions more jobs lost as a result. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsider10 hr. 19 min. ago Related News

Liberal US Cities Top Global List For Highest Homelessness Problem

Liberal US Cities Top Global List For Highest Homelessness Problem Insider Monkey, a finance website, revealed a list of the top 30 cities worldwide with the highest homeless population. Notably, a handful of the US cities on the list are governed by progressive leadership, which may not surprise readers. While it is evident that some unfortunate individuals are facing homelessness, a trend exacerbated by recent inflationary pressures and a drug addiction crisis, some liberal policies have enabled others to sustain their nomadic lifestyles with taxpayer funds.  Insider Monkey found New York City is number 5 on the list, with a homeless population of about 69,000. Next is Chicago, at number 7 with 65,611. Washington, DC, is number 8 with 57,416, Los Angeles number 13 with 41,980, and San Fransisco number 14 with 38,000.  Even with the US government spending $54 billion on several programs to tackle the homelessness crisis, hundreds of thousands of Americans are still wandering the streets. This has been made worse by inflation in recent years and an out-of-control drug addiction crisis.  As for the rest of the world, Manila, Philippines, ranks number 1 with a staggering 3 million homeless. Buenos Aires, Argentina, is number 2 with 198,000. Moscow, Russia, is number 3 with 100,000, and Kanpur, India, is number 4 with 81,000. Here's the partial list of 6 through 30: 6. Kolkata, India Estimated Number of Homeless People: 68,798 Kolkata is one of India's largest cities. It has played a crucial role in the country's history due to its port. 7. Chicago, United States Estimated Number of Homeless People: 65,611 Chicago is one of the largest cities in the U.S. in terms of population and one of the largest business hubs in the country. 8. Washington, D.C., United States Estimated Number of Homeless People: 57,416 Washington D.C. is one of the most expensive places to live in America - making it unsurprising that it also has a high number of homeless people. 9. Mumbai, India Estimated Number of Homeless People: 57,415 Mumbai is India's financial hub, but it is also famous for generations of homeless who are born and die on the streets. 10. Lagos, Nigeria Estimated Number of Homeless People: 50,000 Lagos is one of the largest cities in the world with more than 24 million people living in the city. 11. Damascus, Syria Estimated Number of Homeless People: 50,000 Damascus is the capital of Syria and one of the oldest cities in the world as it has been inhabited for thousands of years. 12. Delhi, India Estimated Number of Homeless People: 46,724 Delhi has more than ten million residents and is one of the most historic cities in the world. 13. Los Angeles, United States Estimated Number of Homeless People: 41,980 Los Angeles is the second largest city in America in terms of population. It is a cultural center place for its state and the U.S. 14. San Francisco, United States Estimated Number of Homeless People: 38,000 San Francisco is a cultural and economic hub and a city that is notorious for high housing costs. 15. Surat, India Estimated Number of Homeless People: 36,144 Surat is a Western Indian city in the state of Gujrat. It is the second largest city in its state and a hub for the global diamond industry. 16. Sao Paulo, Brazil Estimated Number of Homeless People: 31,884 Sao Paulo is the largest city in Brazil in terms of both its population and economic output. 17. Mexico City, Mexico Estimated Number of Homeless People: 30,000 Mexico City is the capital of Mexico. It is one of the largest cities in the world with a population of 9.2 million people. 18. Athens, Greece Estimated Number of Homeless People: 20,000 Athens is one of the most historical cities in the world and the capital of Greece. 19. Auckland, New Zealand Estimated Number of Homeless People: 18,417 Auckland is the largest city in New Zealand and has a population of 1.4 million people. It is an economic hub in its country and accounts for a large portion of New Zealand's economic output. 20. Tampa, United States Estimated Number of Homeless People: 16,000 Tampa is a coastal Floridian city with one of the biggest ports in its state. 21. Seattle, United States Estimated Number of Homeless People: 11,751 Seattle is a highly developed city in the U.S. state of Washington. 22. San Jose, United States Estimated Number of Homeless People: 10,028 San Jose is an economic hub in the U.S. with a large presence of the technology industry. 23. Budapest, Hungary Estimated Number of Homeless People: 10,000 Budapest is the capital and largest city of Hungary with nearly a million residents. 24. Oakland, United States Estimated Number of Homeless People: 9,747 Oakland is a Californian city. It is one of the busiest port cities in America. 25. Dublin, Ireland Estimated Number of Homeless People: 8,523 Dublin is the capital of Ireland and the largest city in terms of population. It is also a hub for global multinational firms. 26. San Diego, United States Estimated Number of Homeless People: 8,427 San Diego is one of the most populous cities in America with a population of more than a million people 27. Rio De Janeiro, Brazil Estimated Number of Homeless People: 7,865 Rio De Janeiro is the second largest city in Brazil. It also has the second largest economy in the country. 28. Rome, Italy Estimated Number of Homeless People: 7,709 Rome is the capital city of Italy and one of the largest cities in the world with a population of more than 2.8 million people. 29. Denver, United States Estimated Number of Homeless People: 6,888 Denver is the capital city of the U.S. state of Colorado. It has a population of more than seven hundred thousand people and is an economic hub in its state. 30. Lisbon, Portugal Estimated Number of Homeless People: 3,780 Lisbon is the capital city of Portugal. It is also the largest city in the country, with more than half a million people living in its boundaries. Tyler Durden Mon, 05/29/2023 - 16:35.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nyt15 hr. 47 min. ago Related News

China"s first-ever large homegrown airliner has finally made its inaugural flight — meet the Comac C919

China hopes the C919 plane will help the country become less reliant on foreign-made technology and advance its aircraft manufacturing industry. China Eastern Airlines flew the first COMAC C919 flight on Friday, flying from Shanghai to Beijing with about 130 passengers onboard.Xinhua/Ding Ting, COMAC China's first homegrown mainline aircraft flew from Shanghai to Beijing on Sunday. The narrowbody plane has had a long production due to technical issues and shipping delays. China hopes the C919 will make it less reliant on foreign-made technology like Boeing and Airbus. After 15 years of production, China's first homegrown mainline commercial jet flew for the first time on Sunday.China's homegrown C919 passenger jet departs Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport for Beijing Capital International Airport during its maiden commercial flight on May 28, 2023 in Shanghai, China.Yin Liqin/China News Service/VCG via Getty ImagesSource: ReutersThe C919 is a narrowbody passenger plane made by state-owned aerospace manufacturer Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (Comac).The China Eastern C919 getting a water salute for the inaugural ion Beijing.Wang Yang/Xinhua, COMACSource: InsiderThe flight was operated by China Eastern Airlines from Shanghai to Beijing carrying nearly 130 passengers, according to a COMAC press release.People take photos as China's homegrown C919 passenger jet lands at Beijing Capital International Airport during its maiden commercial flight on May 28, 2023 in Beijing, China.Han Haidan/China News Service/VCG via Getty ImagesSource: COMACThe China Eastern plane is fit with eight business class seats and 156 economy seats, with the inflight interiors and entertainment system being custom-designed, per the planemaker.Onboard the inaugural C919 flight.Xinhua/Ding Ting, COMACSource: COMACTo celebrate the historic event, passengers were given red boarding passes and served a "themed" meal onboard, including a dessert that had the airline's logo.A flight attendant distributes bottles of water to passengers during the first commercial flight of China's first domestically produced passenger jet C919 from Shanghai to Beijing on May 28, 2023.STR/AFP via Getty ImagesSource: CCTVIn addition to the inaugural route, the carrier also plans to fly the 164-seater aircraft to cities like Guangzhou, Chengdu, and Xiamen, Reuters reported.Passengers check in to first COMAC C919 flight.Xinhua/Ding Ting, COMAC.Source: ReutersChina Eastern has five C919s on order, with the other four scheduled to be delivered over the next two years, though the airline initially planned to receive them all in 2023.Comac C919.Shi Yuge/VCG via Getty ImagesSource: ReutersThe inaugural flight comes after the C919 shared the skies with rival western plane makers Airbus and Boeing during its public debut at China's Zhuhai Airshow in November.Boeing MAX jets at Boeing's facility in Washington state.Taylor Rains/InsiderSource: ReutersDue to the country's strict zero-COVID restrictions, the non-passenger flight had a smaller audience, representing the overall slow return of both China's domestic and international aviation markets, Reuters reported......»»

Category: topSource: businessinsider16 hr. 31 min. ago Related News

A European startup airline said it bought an Airbus A380 to fly across the Atlantic starting next year despite other carriers ditching the jet due to high costs

Global Airlines was founded in July 2021 by travel guru James Asquith, who is also the youngest person to visit every country in the world. Global Airlines purchased an Airbus A380 from German investment first Doric Aviation.Global Airlines European startup carrier Global Airlines has purchased its first plane — the Airbus A380 superjumbo. The carrier plans to equip the plane with "approximately" 471 seats and fly between the US and UK. The plan differs from many other carriers that have been actively retiring the A380 due to high costs. A little-known startup carrier called Global Airlines has bought its first plane — the mammoth Airbus A380.The carrier announced the purchase on Monday, revealing the jet was acquired from German investment firm Doric Aviation. According to Doric, it has 14 A380s in its roster — 13 of which are flying with Emirates and one that is currently being remarketed, meaning it is going to a new operator."Contrary to popular belief, the A380 is widely recognised as the best way to fly, offering unparalleled comfort and features that lead to a unique travel experience," the firm said.While it is more common for new carriers to lease jets at the start of business, Global noted that this was a full purchase."Acquiring our aircraft rather than leasing showcases our commitment to financial security and resilience from day one," Global Airlines CEO and founder James Asquith said in a press release.Asquith is known as the youngest person to ever travel to every sovereign country on the planet and runs the house-swap platform Holiday Swap.With Holiday Swap as the parent company, Asquith's aviation venture started in July 2021 and has earned "significant backing from investors."His plan is to acquire three more A380s "in the coming months" and fly them between the UK and the US starting next spring. The airline has also talked about introducing a "gamer cabin" onboard, but it is not clear if that will ever come to fruition.While the purchase price for the jet — which will be fit with approximately 471 seats across economy, business, and first class — has not been disclosed, Global said it is "understood to be in the eight-figure range.""The purchase of our first aircraft demonstrates that we are well on the way to launching Global," Asquith said. "The next step is to overhaul and refit the aircraft to our high specification, providing our customers with the best experience in the sky today."The idea of used the double-decker plane over more efficient jets like the Boeing 787 is because Global believes the A380 is "the world's most comfortable aircraft" and will be the best option for passengers on long-haul flights."Combining the most advanced aviation technology and an inspired cabin design, it is celebrated for its outstanding quality in every aspect," the company said on its website. "Leading the industry in standards for innovation, experience and efficiency, it is adored by passengers, pilots and crew alike."However, this is not the same sentiment many other carriers have had over the years, especially during the pandemic.With the plane's four engines and immense size, carriers like Air France, Thai Airways, and Malaysia Airways have retired the jet due to its high operating costs. Production of the jet also ended in 2021 due to the lower-than-expected order rate, with Emirates being the only carrier to truly invest in the plane with over 120 purchased. A few other carriers like Singapore Airlines and Lufthansa have also continued flying the A380 post-pandemic."In the end, you have to face facts, and we could see that we were building A380s faster than people were ordering them," Airbus head of business analysis and market forecast Bob Lange said in 2019.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsider16 hr. 31 min. ago Related News

In This “Age of Funemployment,” Is a Recession Possible?

For weekend reading, Gary Alexander, senior writer at Navellier & Associates, offers the following commentary: Come mothers and fathers throughout ... Read more For weekend reading, Gary Alexander, senior writer at Navellier & Associates, offers the following commentary: Come mothers and fathers throughout the land And don’t criticize what you can’t understand Your sons and your daughters are beyond your command Your old road is rapidly aging… For the times they are a-changing – Bob Dylan, 1963 Bob Dylan turned 82 this week, and I guess he’s a little old fashioned now, too, since he recorded an album of Sinatra standards in 2015 (“Shadows in the Night”) and a Christmas carols album in 2009. The times are changing in the employment market, too. Work has almost become a four-letter word… Suzy Welch, 62, a Baby Boomer professor of management practice at NYU’s Stern School of Business and co-author with her late husband Jack of several best-selling business books, wrote a fascinating Op-Ed column in The Wall Street Journal last week (“For Gen Z, Unemployment Can Be a Blast, May 18, 2023). She introduced her latest batch of “bright and shiny young MBA students” who spoke of their lazy, hazy plans after graduation: “I’ll work when I work. Until then, I’ll just do some funemployment.” Ms. Welch said she “literally screamed in class” the first time she heard that word, shouting, “What, what, what? Are you literally saying ‘funemployment’ – like unemployment can be fun?”  The class then “burst into laughter.” Yes, of course that’s what they meant, but they were trying to keep that word secret from the older generation of up-tight Baby Boom professors, since those draft-dodging, dope-smoking hippies of the Vietnam era had now become like their parents – and their students didn’t trust anyone over 30! For those young ones who still want to work, the older employers must also watch their step, since the old hierarchical order at work is mostly dead, if not buried. In his new book, “Generation Why” (released this month), Dr. Karl Moore of Montreal’s McGill University speaks of the new workplace rules, which sound like no rules – a dangerous minefield for managers. In his introduction, Moore makes three points. There are three basic changes from our (Boomer) management era: (1) Transparency over secrecy: Young workers can discover all your faults, errors, and past mistakes by surfing the Internet, so transparency is king; (2) Credentials no longer matter as much; an MBA is the old BA, but experience trumps degrees, so all that massive college debt may be wasted; and (3) Introverts and quieter thinkers can now lead, not just those bombastic extroverts. By Moore’s measures, 30% to 35% of C-suite leaders are now introverts. * *To clarify terms, “C-suite” refers to anyone with “Chief” in the title, like Chief Executive Officer, Chief Operating/Chief Financial, or Chief Managing Officer. Also, here are the generally accepted birth cohorts: Moore has a CEO Insights course at McGill for MBAs. He also takes 30 students each year to some of the fastest growing global economies to see how they do it. He calls it the “Hot Cities of the World Tour.” They just returned from Ghana and Ivory Coast this March. In these 12-day tours, he also has a chance to dine and talk with these 30 students (Millennials and now Gen Z kids) to probe their views. As cohorts in two colleges in Southern California in the 1970s, Moore and I emailed over this, and he told me these tours are promoted as “Taking the Future to the Future,” meaning future business leaders go to where the world is growing fastest. Some of his previous trips were to Israel, the UAE, India, and South Africa. In his study of young workers for this book, Moore conducted over 800 interviews with under-35 workers (and shirkers) in Canada, the U.S., Japan, and all over Europe, as well as over 750 C-suite executives. Previous to his academic career, Moore also spent 11 years working in high tech firms, so he has the advantage of being a capitalist believer and doer, not just a business critic, as is so common in academia. In the U.S., Moore writes, over one third of workers are Millennials (age 27-42), recently surpassing Gen X as the largest component of our workforce. Globally, there are 1.8 billion Millennials, about a quarter of the world, and 86% of Millennials come from developing economies, which may determine who rules the Century. Put bluntly, will the hardest workers of the world surpass our new funemployment cohort? How Can We Have A Recession With So Many Job Openings? A classic warning sign of a recession ahead is an inverted yield curve, which we have endured for nearly a year now without a recession. The yield curve inverted before the last four real recessions, in 1982, 1990, 2000, and 2008. Even with the artificial 2020 recession, caused by a forced COVID-19 lockdown, the yield curve was neutral before that recession. Today, we have the most inverted yield curve since the double-dip recessions of 1979-82, yet we still stubbornly grow our GDP each quarter since mid-2022. It’s hard (some say impossible) to have a recession with the unemployment rate at a record low, jobs continuing to expand at a solid pace, nearly 10 million jobs going begging and wages usually outpacing prices, resulting in real wage gains. Everywhere you look, you’re likely to see “HELP NEEDED” signs. Jobs are opening even faster: The percentage of all U.S. business owners reporting job openings that they cannot fill rose by 2 points to 45% in April — maybe because “funemployment” is still widely preferable? The labor force participation rate remained at 62.6% in April, below the pre-pandemic reading of 63.3% in February 2020, but that rate itself was historically low. It was over 64% from 1984 to 2012, peaking in 2001, when I argue (in recent columns) that we moved from a Growth economy to a Debt economy. Funemployment Comes Home to Roost To close on a personal note, I’ve worked every month since April 1962, age 16, first on a paper route by car, then as a night janitor to work my way through college. I commuted to work at a desk job for nearly 40 years before moving to my late parents’ home in the San Juan Islands of Washington State to work online as an editor. I tried to match the work ethic of my parents, who worked in the Great Depression. This week marks the date when two of our five grown grandchildren arrive to live with us for the next few months, and maybe longer, as part of their funemployment option. It’s a grandparents’ dream come true, having these wonderful young ones around us – and a great help in our old age, a win-win situation. One says, “I don’t want to sit in an office from 9 to 5 each day.” I responded, “Neither did I, nor probably 90% of those who did it, but we felt we had to.” These kids already have online and “gig” jobs, not office jobs. I know I’m old-fashioned about work, but (with Karl Moore) I’m learning from the youth, and I know that both of these two fine youngsters will find fulfilling jobs and careers after living with us, with the caveat that retail jobs, construction, and even janitor work aren’t careers, but training ground for showing up on time, respecting rules, learning manners, and serving customer needs. They’ll find their best work. It’s a brave new world for old fogies. But it’s comforting to know these kids will soon be old fogies, too......»»

Category: blogSource: valuewalk18 hr. 31 min. ago Related News

Debt Ceiling Crisis Has Already Hit US Economic Credibility, Reform Needed

The US economy and the nation’s credibility have already been damaged by the debt ceiling crisis even if a deal ... Read more The US economy and the nation’s credibility have already been damaged by the debt ceiling crisis even if a deal is struck next week, and “reform is now urgently required”, affirms the CEO of one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory, asset management and fintech organizations. Agreement To Raise The Debt Ceiling To Be Reached On Tuesday Nigel Green of deVere is speaking out following reports that Republican and White House officials are edging closer to an agreement to raise the debt limit and cap federal spending for two years. He comments: “Tuesday is being reported as the likely day for a House vote on raising the US debt ceiling.  “Although this is not definite, and it might come right down to the wire and happen just hours before Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen says her department could run out of money.” Regardless of whether a deal is done, and a default is avoided, which is the hope, the “US economy and the nation’s credibility have already been damaged,” says Nigel Green. “This is evidenced by Fitch, a credit rating agency, late Wednesday putting the US government’s AAA debt rating on ‘negative watch’ as a result of the political brinkmanship between the White House and Congress over raising the debt ceiling.” He continues: “Using the country’s debt as a political weapon, undermines confidence of investors in the US government amid concerns about the government’s ability to properly manage its finances.  “This loss of confidence will mean that it becomes more difficult for the US government to borrow money in the future, which could lead to higher interest rates and weaker economic growth. “The debt ceiling drama also erodes some of the current global reserve currency’s credibility and reputation as a ‘safety asset’, which could have far-reaching repercussions for the US.” The Ultimate Gift For China The deVere CEO also recently argued that the debt ceiling crisis was the “ultimate gift” for America’s major geopolitical rival, China, which is seeking to promote the internationalisation of its own currency and to position itself as a more stable and attractive investment option, in order to attract more international investment and capital inflows. “Whatever happens in debt ceiling talks this week between Democrats and Republicans, China’s massive PR machine is already spinning the narrative that the US is a declining power,” he noted. With talks on a knife edge to contain this crisis, Nigel Green says that should this current situation be resolved, reform is “urgently required.” He says: “I’m in favour of debt ceiling reforms that take away the threat of a US government default and all the implications of that, and reforms that make lawmakers in Washington truly accountable by automatically triggering spending cuts should the ceiling be reached.” The deVere CEO and founder concludes: “We hope and expect a deal to be done to avoid a default. But it should never have got to this stage in the first place, as damage has already been done to US economic credibility. “This must serve as a catalyst for reform.” .....»»

Category: blogSource: valuewalk18 hr. 31 min. ago Related News

Rabobank: Will The Debt Deal Pass Smoothly Or Will Congress Spoil It In The Last Minute?

Rabobank: Will The Debt Deal Pass Smoothly Or Will Congress Spoil It In The Last Minute? By Benjamin Picton, Senior Macro Strategist at Rabobank Market comments So, a debt deal is done, and now all that remains is for it to be articulated in a bill that can pass through Congress and be signed off by the President. This is by no means a fait accompli, but there should be sufficient support from both Republicans and Democrats to get it over the line before Janet Yellen’s revised X-date of next Monday. Early reports over the weekend suggest that a bill will come before Congress on Wednesday, with the hope of a speedy passage through both the House and Senate. Neither side is happy with the terms of the agreement, which probably suggests that it strikes the right balance. The debt ceiling will be suspended for two years, which is just long enough to see Biden through to the other side of the 2024 presidential election. Republicans have extracted spending concessions from Biden that limit growth in non-essential spending to 0% in fiscal 2024 and just 1% in fiscal 2025. That represents a real-terms cut, but wasn’t enough for some of the fiscal hawks in the Republican Party who have pointed out that given that the national debt will hit $35 trillion in 2025 under this deal. Likewise, progressive Democrats are upset that Biden has agreed to any spending cuts at all. If the deficit had to be reduced, those members favored tax increases as the means to do it. Despite the Sturm und Drang it looks like the debt can has been kicked down the road once again and that financial repression remains the only real debt reduction strategy that has any prospect of actually working. Of course, this would require some help from our friends at the Fed. The flow of data on Friday threw up some new challenges for the Fed’s thinking on the future path of the Fed Funds rate. The Core PCE deflator for April came in hot at 0.4% m-o-m vs expectations of 0.3%, and a prior read of just 0.1%. Likewise, personal spending in April lifted by twice as much as expected: up by 0.8%. That’s particularly striking given that personal income only rose by 0.4% in the month, and growth in spending was flat in the month prior. St Louis Fed data shows that average revolving credit balances have grown from the fourth quarter to the first quarter for the last two years, which represents one of the strongest gains we have seen since the mid-2000s. So, reading between the lines, it appears that Americans are spending more, but they are using credit to do it. That sounds an awful lot like Congress (until now, at least), and must weigh on the thinking of the Fed, whose primary tool for slowing the economy is to make that big stock of credit more expensive. On that subject, the Cleveland Fed’s Loretta Mester suggested that a June rate hike was still a possibility, while noting that “progress on inflation is slow, concerning” and that it would be a mistake for the Fed to under-tighten and allow inflation to persist. She also said that she may revise up her inflation estimate at the June meeting and that she believes the Fed does need to tighten further, even if it doesn’t happen in June. A similarly hawkish Thomas Barkin of the Richmond Fed described labor demand in skilled trades as “crazy hot”, but Susan Collins of the Boston Fed was a little more sanguine. She said that the Fed is at, or near a pause in the hiking cycle, which is a view shared by Rabobank’s Fed expert Philip Marey. The strong run of data over the last few days has seen the traders up their bets on the future path of rates to the extent that a further hike is now fully priced in by July. Elsewhere over the weekend we saw news that Turkish President Erdogan has been successful in his bid for re-election. Erdogan faced a strong challenge from Kemal Kilicdaroglu, but ultimately prevailed in the second round of voting. Erdogan’s victory has seen further pressure on the Turkish Lira, which is down more than 70% against the USD since the start of 2020, and concerns over Turkey’s dwindling foreign exchange reserves. Erdogan has been successful in positioning Turkey as an increasingly important player in geopolitics, especially since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, but opposition parties believed that unorthodox economic policies and very high inflation would be enough to convince voters to elect for a transition in power. Turkey isn’t Robinson Crusoe in experiencing pressure on foreign currency reserves. We have seen similar troubles in Argentina, Sri Lanka, Lebanon and a host of other emerging markets in recent months. The rapid policy tightening and accompanying balance sheet runoff from the Fed is sucking dollar liquidity out of the market, and leaving some of those emerging economies unable to service their debts or pay for their imports. China and Russia have been helpfully stepping into the breach in an attempt to end the United States’ “exorbitant privilege” (and protect themselves from US sanctions), but as my compatriot Michael Every points out, the death of the Dollar-based system is much exaggerated. So, another week of debt-ceiling chicanery beckons, but at least we are nearing the end of it (for now). While the big question around whether or not a deal would be done seems to have been answered, lots of new questions have now fallen out of it: Will the passage of the deal through Congress go smoothly, or will there be last minute spoil attempts? What does the reduced fiscal impulse mean for dollar liquidity and emerging markets? And does the debt deal give the Fed a clear runway for more tightening? I guess we will find out this week. Preview of the Week ahead Monday: The Memorial Day holiday in the United States and Bank Holiday in the UK should see a muted start to the week. Expect debt ceiling coverage to soak up most of the headlines. The one event for the day will be remarks by ECB Governing Council member de Cos. Tuesday: New Zealand building permits for April kick us off. There is no survey estimate for this one, but don’t be surprised if the number looks rubbish. Both the RBNZ and the NZ Government have suggested that housing investment will be under pressure this year as rate hikes and high inflation keep developers on the sidelines. Shortly afterwards we will see employment data for Japan and April building approvals for Australia where survey expectations are for a gain of 2%. Spanish retail sales for April and the preliminary read of Spain’s May CPI will be next up. Surveyed economists are expecting CPI to print at 0.1% m-o-m. Later in the day we will hear from the ECB’s Holzmann, before the Conference Board consumer confidence numbers are released in the United States. The market is looking for a slight dip back below 100. To round out the day we get The Dallas Fed’s manufacturing index, and both Villeroy from the ECB and Barkin from the Fed will be speaking. Wednesday: RBA Governor Philip Lowe is first up on a very busy day. He will be giving testimony before the Senate Economics Legislation Committee. This comes hot on the heels of leaked details of a private briefing where Governor Lowe reportedly told politicians to brace themselves for more rate hikes. Keep an eye out for comments on wages and productivity, as unit labor costs seem to be the chief concern for the RBA recently. Following Lowe, we have Japanese industrial production, as well as Aussie private sector credit and monthly CPI for April. The ANZ consumer confidence index for New Zealand will also be released. The highlight of the Asian session will be China PMIs for May. Here the manufacturing index is seen improving slightly to a still contractionary 49.5, while the services reading recedes slightly to 55.3. In the European session we will see preliminary May CPI data for France, where the y-o-y reading is expected to fall from 5.9% to 5.5%. This will be followed by French PPI and German employment data for May (unemployment expected to remain steady at 5.6%), before we see Italian CPI (7.5% y-o-y) German CPI (6.4% y-o-y) and the release of the ECB’s Financial Stability Review. In the US session we will get Canadian 1st quarter GDP data (2.5% annualized expected) before the release of May Chicago PMIs and the Jolts survey for April, where job openings are expected to have declined to just over 9,400,000. The Fed’s Collins, Harker, Bowman and Jefferson will all be speaking, as will the BOE’s Mann and the ECB’s Villeroy and Visco. Thursday: China’s Caixin manufacturing PMI is first up and expected to confirm a slightly contractionary read of 49.5. This will be followed by manufacturing PMIs for Spain, Italy, France, the UK, Germany, Canada and the United States, as well as UK house prices for May and German retail sales for April. US initial jobless claims will also be released with the market expecting a slight increase to 235,000 w-o-w. The May ISM survey closes out the day in data with the manufacturing index expected to slip 1 tick to 47, while the prices paid index is also expected to moderate slightly to 52.5. ECB speakers on the day will include President Christine Lagarde, Bank of France Governor Villeroy and Financial Stability Board Chair Klaas Knot. followed by the Fed’s Harker. Friday: The morning brings Aussie home loan data and 1st quarter terms of trade numbers for New Zealand. Later on we get French industrial production and Spanish employment figures before the real hero of the day: US non-farm payrolls. Payrolls for May are expected to have increased by 190,000, while the labor force participation rate remains steady at 62.6% and the unemployment rate moves up one tick to 3.5%. Non-farm payrolls is always an important number, and doubly so this week as the market looks for further direction after the bullish end to last week. Tyler Durden Mon, 05/29/2023 - 12:30.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nyt19 hr. 19 min. ago Related News

Former Russian commander in Ukraine says Putin could be overthrown by the Wagner mercenary army

The Wagner army could pose a huge threat to Putin's power, according to Igor Girkin, a former Federal Security Service officer who once led a group of Russian militants in Donetsk. Yevgeny Prigozhin, the founder of a Russian mercenary group known as Wagner (left), and Russian President Vladimir PutinMikhail Svetlov/Contributor via Getty Images A former Federal Security Service officer said Putin could be overthrown by Wagner. The Wagner Army is Putin's private military army, largely made up of mercenaries. The Army chief, Yevgeny Prigozhin, could pose an active threat to Putin, said the war analyst. Vladimir Putin could be ousted by Russia's private military group, the Wagner army, according to Igor Girkin, a former Federal Security Service officer who once led a group of Russian militants in Donetsk.Girkin, who is also known by his alias "Strelkov" and is now a prominent war blogger , said that Wagner's chief Yevgeny Prigozhin could overthrow the Russian president, the Daily Mail reported."If Prigozhin remains the head of Wagner, the mutiny will come quickly and radically," Girkin said in a video shared by WarTranslated."A coup attempt has been declared...What will happen next, I don't know, especially as Wagner is urgently withdrawn to rear bases...The danger of a looming coup is clear."Prigozhin, who was once close with Putin, has in recent months repeatedly criticised Russian defense ministry. Last week he said that Ukraine has gained more troops and more weapons since Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine.The Wagner founder added to his feud with Russia's public leaders when he claimed that the Ukraine war had backfired, according to The Hill. He counted large losses to the Wagner Group in their pursuit of Bakhmut, as well as the Ukrainian army's strength, while suggesting that Russia's top leadership should be changed.Girkin has been critical of the impact of the invasion of Ukraine on Russia.In a YouTube manifesto last month, reported on by the Ukrainian newspaper Ukrayinska Pravda, Girkin said that the situation on the frontline has an "extremely negative" impact on the Russia's ability to win the war."I'm not afraid to say that we are heading towards military defeat," Girkin said, adding that the Russian economy, military, and political system were unprepared for such a "long, protracted war."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nyt19 hr. 47 min. ago Related News

The reason the stock market has stayed relatively stable amid economic chaos: computer-driven trading

Quant funds, which use computer models to trade, are helping calm the markets at a time of uncertainty. Computer trading is stabilizing the stock market.Yuichiro Chino/Getty Images Amid a chaotic few months in the US economy, the stock market has remained relatively stable. Quant funds, which use computer models to trade, are helping calm the markets, The Wall Street Journal reported. Here's how quant funds work and the impact they're having on the market. Economic pandemonium has swept our financial systems for the last few months: We entered the year with stubborn inflation; the March collapse of Silicon Valley Bank spurred fear for investors, business owners, and bankers alike; and recent discussions on breaching the debt ceiling have caused uncertainty about the future of Social Security or potential job loss, among other scares.Yet still, the stock market has remained somewhat calm. In fact, the S&P is up nearly 10% year to date, as of May 29. Meanwhile, the VIX, also known as the volatility index, has remained below 20 — a level that suggests a relatively stable market — every trading day but two since March 28. That stability is at least in part thanks to quant funds, according to The Wall Street Journal. Quant funds, or quantitative hedge funds, are investment funds that use computer-created algorithms, mathematical models, and artificial intelligence to make stock predictions.While some investors have stepped back from equity markets due to high valuations and an uncertain course of the US economy, quant funds have been "doubling down," The Journal reported."We have seen them sort of balance each other out for the last six or seven weeks now," Parag Thatte, a strategist at Deutsche Bank, told The Journal.While the quants may have helped stabilize the market in recent weeks, they can also be prone to reacting in unison when volatility does hit, The Journal added.Quant funds can use computer programs, AI, and more to make decisionsThe strong performance of quant funds in 2022 put them back in the spotlight, The Journal reported.Quant models come in a variety of forms. They can be based on ratios like price-to-earnings, debt-to-equity, and earnings growth, according to Investopedia. They can also incorporate AI into their decision making.Some have proven very successful. One of the largest US-based quant funds is D.E. Shaw, which saw its largest hedge fund gain 24.7% last year after fees, outperforming industry averages, according to Reuters. Similarly, the quant fund Renaissance Technologies saw annualized returns of 66% for 30 years, from 1988 to 2018, Insider previously reported.The recent success of quants comes at a time when many are considering the impacts of AI on a wide range of industries. Many investors agreed that AI would be a "game changer" for financial services, according to a 2023 survey by Morgan Stanley. But it will likely not replace humans entirely.Even if trading does become more reliant on algorithms and AI, many investors still might prefer a human managing their money. Eighty-eight percent of respondents to the Morgan Stanley survey said the human-to-human financial advisor relationship was extremely important."Within this context, AI should be viewed not as a replacement of human guidance," Jeff McMillan, head of analytics, data and innovation for Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, said in the survey, "but as a powerful tool to help turbocharge a Financial Advisor's practice management and client interaction capabilities."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nyt19 hr. 47 min. ago Related News

China"s first homegrown large passenger jet took its maiden flight after 16 years in the making — check it out

With the C919 jet, China hopes to compete with Airbus and Boeing. The aircraft made its maiden flight from Shanghai to Beijing on Sunday. The C919 departs Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport for Beijing Capital International Airport on its maiden commercial flight.Yin Liqin/China News Service/VCG via Getty Images China's first domestically-made large passenger jet completed its maiden commercial flight Sunday. The 164-seat C919 aircraft flew from Shanghai to Beijing, operated by China Eastern Airlines. With the jet, China hopes to compete with the world's two major aircraft makers – Airbus and Boeing. China's first domestically-made large passenger jet has completed its maiden commercial flight. The 164-seat C919 aircraft, made by the state-owned aerospace manufacturer Commercial Aviation Corporation of China (Comac), made the journey from Shanghai to Beijing on Sunday morning. The flight was operated by China Eastern Airlines, which received the jet in December.The C919 departs Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport for Beijing Capital International Airport on its maiden commercial flight.VCG/VCG via Getty ImagesNearly 130 passengers were on board for the maiden flight, which took around two hours, Comac said. Passengers received red boarding passes and a "themed" meal, Chinese state broadcaster CCTV reported, including a dessert featuring the aircraft's logo. Passengers also waved Chinese flags during the flight, per the broadcaster.China has been working on the jet for more than a decade under plans to compete with the world's two major aircraft makers — Europe's Airbus and the US' Boeing."I'm really confident in our country," Liu Peng, a passenger on the flight, told Reuters, per a translation by the outlet. "Whether talking about core technology or comfort level, both will get better and better."The C919 shortly after taking off from Shanghai Hongqiao Airport.CFOTO/Future Publishing via Getty ImagesLv Boyuan, a student, told Reuters that the news of the maiden flight made him feel "very emotional.""When I heard about C919's maiden flight, I spent the whole week paying attention to everything about this development," he told the outlet, adding that he tried to buy tickets "from the moment they were released." He told Reuters that he planned to take a C919 flight from Chengdu to Shanghai on Monday.Crowds gather to watch the C919 land at Beijing Capital International Airport during its maiden commercial flight.Han Haidan/China News Service/VCG via Getty ImagesChina's first domestic jet, the ARJ21, went into service in 2016. It is considerably smaller than the C919, with the largest aircraft having 97 seats.The C919's commercial debut was initially slated for 2016, but was delayed by a number of technical difficulties and supply issues. The first C919 was ultimately manufactured in 2015, and the aircraft made its first test flight two years later. It was publicly debuted at China's Zhuhai Airshow in November.Comac says it has already secured more than 1,200 orders for the C919, per The BBC. This includes five orders placed by China Eastern Airlines in 2021, with the planes set to be based out of Shanghai.The C919 has two cabins, with eight seats in business class and 156 in economy. Comac says its interior, passenger seats, and in-flight entertainment systems are all custom-designed. Passengers sit on board the C919's maiden commercial flight.STR/AFP via Getty ImagesBut about 60% of the parts used to make the plane are supplied by American companies including General Electric, Honeywell, and Eaton, Nikkei Asia reported, citing a report by the US think tank the Center for Strategic & International Studies.This reliance on imports could be pushing the prices up. Bloomberg reported the list price of the C919 is about $99 million, making it only marginally cheaper than Boeing's 737 MAX 8 and Airbus' A320neo.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nyt22 hr. 19 min. ago Related News

Facts Vs. Fed-Speak: A Comical History With Tragic Consequences

Facts Vs. Fed-Speak: A Comical History With Tragic Consequences Authored by Matthew Piepenburg via, Below, we look at simple facts in the context of complex markets to underscore the dangerous direction of Fed-Speak and Fed policy. Keep It Simple, Stupid It’s true that, “the Devil is in the details.” Anyone familiar with Wall Street in general, or market math in particular, for example, can wax poetic on acronym jargon, Greek math symbols, sigma moves in bond yields, chart contango or derivative market lingo. Notwithstanding all those “details,” however, is a more fitting phrase for our times, namely: “Keep it simple, stupid.” The Simple and the Stupid The simple facts are clear to almost anyone who wishes to see them. With US debt, for example, at greater than 120% of its GDP, Uncle Sam has a problem. That is, he’s broke, and not just debt-ceiling broke, but I mean broke, broke. It’s just THAT simple. Consequently, no one wants his IOUs, confirmed by the simple/stupid fact that in 2014, foreign Central Banks stopped buying US Treasuries on net, something not seen in five decades. In short, the US, and its sacred bonds, just aren’t what they used to be. To fill this gap, that creature from Jekyll Island otherwise known as the Federal Reserve, which is neither Federal nor a reserve, has to mouse-click money to pay the deficit spending of short-sighted and opportunistic administrations (left and right) year after year after year. Uncle Fed, along with its TBTF nephews, have thus become the largest marginal financiers of US deficits for the last 8 years. In short, the Fed and big banks are literally drinking Uncle Sam’s debt-laced Kool aide. The Fed’s money printer has thus become central to keeping credit markets alive despite the equal fact (paradox) that its rate hikes are simultaneously gutting bonds, banks and small businesses to fight inflation despite the stubborn fact that such inflation is still here. The Inflation Narrative: Form Over Substance My view, of course, is that the Fed’s war on inflation is a headline optic rather than policy fact. Like all debt-soaked and failing regimes, the Fed secretly wants inflation to outpace rates (i.e., it wants “negative real rates”) in order to inflate away some of that aforementioned and embarrassing debt. But admitting that is akin to political suicide, and the Fed is political, not “independent.” Thus, the Fed will seek inflation while simultaneously mis/under-reporting CPI inflation by at least 50%. I’ve described this as “having your cake and eating it too.” All that said, inflation, which was supposed to be transitory, is clearly sticky (as we warned from the beginning), and even its under-reported 6% range has the experts in a tizzy of comical proportions. Neel Kashkari, for example, is thinking the US may need to get rates to at least 6% to “beat” inflation. James Bullard is asking for more rate hikes too. But what these “go higher, longer” folks are failing to mention is that rate hikes make Uncle Sam’s bar tab (i.e., debt) even more expensive, a fact which deepens rather than alleviates the US deficit nightmare. The War on Inflation is a Policy that Actually Adds to Inflation Ironically, however, few (including Kashkari, Bullard, Powell or just about any economic midget in the House of Representatives) are recognizing the additional paradox that greater deficits only add to (rather than “combat”) the inflation problem, as deficit spending (an economy on debt respirator) keeps artificial demand (and hence) prices rising rather than falling. Furthermore, these deficits will ultimately be paid for with more fiat fake money created out of thin air at the Eccles building, a policy which is inherently (and by definition): INFLATIONARY. In short, and as even Warren B. Mosler recently tweeted, “the Fed is chasing its own tail.” Inflation, in other words, is not only here to stay, the Fed’s “anti-inflationary” rate hike policies are actually making it worse. Even party-line economists are forecasting higher core inflation this year: The Real Solution to Inflation? Scorched Earth. In fact, the only way to truly dis-inflate the inflation problem is to raise rates high enough to destroy the bond market and the economy. Afterall, major recessions/depressions do “beat” inflation—along with just about everything and everyone else. The current Fed’s answer to combatting the inflation problem is in many ways the equivalent of combatting a kitchen rodent problem by placing dynamite in the sink. Meanwhile, the Rate Hikes Keep Blowing Things Up Buried beneath the headlines of one failing bank (and tax-payer-funded depositor bailout) after the next, is the equally dark picture of US small businesses, all of which rely on loans to stay afloat. But according to the U.S. Small Business Association, loan rates for the “little guys” have reached double digit levels. Needless to say, such debt costs don’t just hurt small enterprises, they destroy them. This credit crunch is only just beginning, as small enterprises borrow less in the face of rising rates. Real estate, of course, is just another sector for which the “war on inflation” rate hikes are creating collateral damage. Homeowners enjoying the fixed low rates of days past are naturally remiss to sell current homes only to face the pain of buying a newer one at much higher mortgage rates. This means the re-sale inventory for older homes is shrinking, which means the market (as well as price) for new construction homes is spiking—serving as yet another and ironic example of how the Fed’s alleged war on inflation is actually adding to price inflation… In short, Fed rate hikes can make inflation rise, and equally tragic, is that Fed rate cuts can also make inflation rise, as cheaper money only means greater velocity of the same, which, alas, is inflationary… See the Paradox? And that, folks, is the paradox, conundrum, corner or trap in which our central planners have placed us and themselves. As I’ve warned countless times, we must eventually pick our poison: It’s either a depression or an inflation crisis. Ultimately, Powell’s rate hikes, having already murdered bonds, stocks and banks, will also murder the economy. Save the System or the Currency? At that inevitable moment when the financial and social rubble of a national and then global recession is too impossible to ignore, the central planners will have to take a long and hard look at the glowing red buttons on their money printers and decide which is worthing saving: The “system” or the currency? The answer is simple. They’ll push the red button while swallowing the blue pill. Ultimately, and not too far off in our horizon, the central planners will “save” the system (bonds and TBTF banks) by mouse-clicking trillions of more USDs. This simply means that the deflationary recession ahead will be followed by a hyper-inflationary “solution.” Again, and worth repeating, history confirms in debt crisis after debt crisis, and failed regime after failed regime, that the last bubble to “pop” is always the currency. A Long History of Stupid In my ever-growing data base of things Fed-Chairs have said that turned out to be completely and utterly, well…100% WRONG, one of my favorites was Ben Bernanke’s 2010 assertion that QE would be “temporary” and with “no consequence” to the USD. According to this false idol, QE was safe because the Fed was merely paying out dollars to purchase Treasuries is an even swap of contractually even values. What Bernanke failed to foresee or consider, however, is that such an elegant “swap” is anything but elegant when the Fed is marred by an operating loss in which its Treasuries are tanking in value. That is, the “swap” is now a swindle. As deficits rise, the TBTF banks will require more mouse-clicked (i.e., inflationary) dollars to meet Uncle Sam’s interest expense promise to the banks (“Interest on Excess Reserves”). In the early days of standard QE operations, at least the Fed’s printed money was “balanced” by its purchased USTs which the TBTF banks then removed from the market and parked “safely” at the Fed. But today, given the operating losses in play, the Fed’s raw money printing will be like like raw sewage with nowhere to go but straight into the economy with an inflationary odor. Bad Options, Fluffy Words Again, the cornered Fed’s options are simple/stupid: It can continue to hawkishly raise rates higher for longer and send the economy into a depression and the markets into a spiral while declaring victory over inflation, or it can print trillions more fiat dollars to prop the system and neuter/debase the dollar. And for this wonderful set of options, Bernanke won a Nobel Prize? The ironies do abound… But as a famous French moralist once said, the highest offices are rarely, if ever, held by the highest minds. Gold, of course, is not something the Fed (nor anyone else) can print or mouse-click, and gold’s ultimate role as a currency-insurer is not a matter of debate, but a matter of cycles, history and simple/stupid common sense. (See below). Markets Are Prepping In the interim, the markets are slowly catching on to the fact that protecting purchasing power is now more of a priority than looking for safety in grossly and un-naturally inflated “fixed income” or “risk-free-return” bonds. Why? Because those bonds are now (thanks to Uncle Fed) empirically and mathematically nothing more than “no-income” and “return-free-risk.” Meanwhile, hedge funds are building their net short positions in S&P futures at levels not seen since 2007 for the simple reason that they foresee a Powell-induced market implosion off the American bow. Once that foreseeable implosion occurs, get ready for the Fed’s only pathetic tools left: Lower rates and trillions of instant liquidity—the kind that kills a currency. In Gold We Trust The case for gold as insurance against such a backdrop of debt, financial fragility and openly dying currencies is, well: Simple stupid and plain to see. Few on this round earth see the simple among the complex better than our advisor and friend, Ronni Stoeferle, whose most recent In Gold We Trust Report has just been released. Co-produced with his Incrementum AG colleague, Mark Valek, this annual report has become the seminal report in the precious metal space. The 2023 edition is replete with not only the most sobering and clear data points and contextual common sense, but also a litany of entertaining quotations from Churchill and the Austrian School to The Grateful Dead and Anchorman … Ronni and Mark unpack the consequences of a Fed that has raised rates too high, too fast and too late, which is, again a fact plain to see: Needless to say, hiking rates into an economic setting already historically “debt fragile” tends to break things (from USTs to regional banks) and portends far more pain ahead, as both history and math also plainly confirm: In a debt-soaked world fully addicted to years of instant liquidity from a central bank near you, Powell’s sudden (but again too late, too much) hiking policies will not “softly” restrain market exuberance nor contain inflation without unleashing the mother of all recessions. Instead, the subsequent and sudden negative growth of money supply will only hasten a recession as opposed to a “softish” landing: As the foregoing report warns, the looming approach of this recession is already (and further) confirmed by such basic indicators as the Conference Board of Leading Indicators, an inverted yield curve and the alarming spread between 10Y and 2Y yields.  Self-Inflicted Geopolitical Risks The report further examines the geopolitical shifts of which we have been warning(and writing) since March of 2022, when Western sanctions against Russia unleashed a watershed trend by the BRICS and other nations to seek settlement payments outside of the weaponized USD. One would be unwise to ignore the significance of this shift or underestimate the growing power of these BRICS (and BRICS “plus”) alliances, as their combined share of global GDP is rising not falling… As interest in (and trust for) the now weaponized USD as a payment system declines alongside a weakening faith in Uncle Sam’s IOUs, the world, and its central banks (especially out East) are turning away from USTs and turning toward physical gold. Again, I give credit to the In Gold We Trust Report: See a trend? See why? It’s fairly simple, and for this we can thank the fairly stupid policies of the Fed in particular and the declining faith in their prowess in general: Myths Are Stubborn Things Many, of course, find it hard to imagine that a Federal Reserve based in DC and within the land of the Great American dream (and world reserve currency) could be anything but wise, efficient and stabilizing, despite an embarrassing Fed track record that is empirically unwise, inefficient and consistently destabilizing… Myths are hard to break, despite the fact the myth of MMT and QE on demand has been a failed experiment and is sending the US, as well as the global, economy toward a reckoning of historical proportions. But the messaging of “Keep calm and carry on” from Powell is calming in spirit despite the fact that it hides terrifying math and historically confirmed consequences for the fiat money by which investors still wrongly measure their wealth. But as Brian Fantana of Anchorman would tell us, trust the central planners. “They’ve done studies, you know. 60% of the time it works every time.” As for us, we trust the kind of data Ronni and Mark have gathered and that barbarous relic of gold far more than calming words and debased, fiat currencies. As history reminds, when currencies die within a backdrop of unsustainable debt, gold in fact does work—and every time. Tyler Durden Mon, 05/29/2023 - 07:30.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nyt22 hr. 47 min. ago Related News

The 25 Richest Americans Of All Time

The U.S. is home to, at last count, 735 billionaires, the most of any country, who have a combined net worth of $4.5 trillion, according to Forbes magazine. By combining business savvy, the outlook of a visionary, good luck, and a sometimes merciless approach to competition, a select few Americans have been able to amass […] The U.S. is home to, at last count, 735 billionaires, the most of any country, who have a combined net worth of $4.5 trillion, according to Forbes magazine. By combining business savvy, the outlook of a visionary, good luck, and a sometimes merciless approach to competition, a select few Americans have been able to amass fortunes worth billions. To determine the 25 richest Americans of all time, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed wealth estimates of prominent Americans, both living and dead, from historical and media sources, including the Forbes Real-Time Billionaires list. We converted the estimated net worth of those who have passed away into current U.S. dollars using the CPI inflation calculator from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The figures for those not living are our best attempt to estimate each person’s peak net worth. The 25 billionaires on the list have amassed fortunes the equivalent of $66 billion, in 2023 dollars, or much more. Of the 25 wealthiest Americans ever, 10 are still alive and hold a combined net worth of more than $1.17 trillion. Many of these billionaires have made their fortunes in the tech sector, which has become a driving force of the American economy. (See where America’s 25 richest billionaires went to college.) Many of the other richest Americans on our list gained their wealth beginning in the Industrial Revolution and during the Gilded Age of the late 19th century, when bankers and industrialists controlled power and wealth with little interference from government. This was when America’s westward expansion accelerated, and cities swelled with immigrants and those looking for employment opportunities. The richest Americans took advantage of these trends and made their fortunes in coal, steel, oil, railroads, and shipping.  Some of these so-called “robber barons” amassed their wealth through ethically questionable means, bribing politicians, preventing workers from organizing, and ruthlessly crushing rivals. Much like the Gilded Age, income inequality has become a major issue in the U.S. today as technology has contributed to creating a more bifurcated income structure. (See the CEOs of major U.S. companies who are paid 1,000 times more than their employees.) Click here to see 25 richest Americans of all time. Sponsored: Tips for Investing A financial advisor can help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of investment properties. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now. Investing in real estate can diversify your portfolio. But expanding your horizons may add additional costs. If you’re an investor looking to minimize expenses, consider checking out online brokerages. They often offer low investment fees, helping you maximize your profit......»»

Category: blogSource: 247wallstMay 29th, 2023Related News

The Saudi crown prince revealed his latest vision for Neom, the $1 trillion "utopian" megacity that critics fear will become a dystopian nightmare

In a new collection of pictures, Saudi Arabia presents the planned megacity of Neom as a vacation paradise. Experts have warned of a darker reality. This concept image shows the planned design of 'The Line,' a 'vertical skyscraper' from the planned futuristic Saudi Arabian city of Neom that cuts through the desert in the northwest of the country.NEOM Saudi Arabia unveiled new pictures of the Neom megacity planned by its ruler, Mohammed bin Salman. They highlight the landscapes surrounding the city, and present it as a vacation paradise.  But human-rights groups have concerns about the city's plans for mass surveillance. In a desert in the arid northwest of Saudi Arabia, plans for a trillion-dollar, futuristic megacity are beginning to take shape.Neom is the brainchild of Saudi Arabia's crown prince and de facto ruler, Mohammed bin Salman.In his bid to diversify Saudi Arabia's economy and reduce its reliance on fossil fuels, the crown prince aims to attract billions in investment to Neom, which he envisages as a tourism attraction and global hub for technology and innovation. In a new set of pictures released by Neom and Unsplash, the city is portrayed as a paradisaical adventure holiday resort. But activists are warning that that rights are being trampled as Saudi Arabia readies parts of the resort to be opened to visitors. Let's take a look at the latest images. Saudi Arabia is seeking to draw millions of tourists to NeomAn photograph released in May 2023 showing a desert canyon in Saudi Arabia where Neom is due to be builtGettyImages/Unsplash/NeomFor decades, Saudi Arabia was better known for its ultra-conservative interpretation of Islam and oil wealth than as a tourist destination. The kingdom already hosts millions of Muslims making the pilgrimage to Mecca every year, but was essentially closed to other visitors. It made a dramatic change in 2019, issuing its first tourist visas.Crown Prince Mohammed has ambitious plans to drive further change, and hopes to attract 100 million visitors to the kingdom each year.Neom is being billed as a core attraction, and is described on its website as the "world's most ambitious tourism project." The city will be built on 10,200 square miles of desertThis promotional photograph shows the Saudi Arabian desert where the city of Neom will be built.NEOM/GettyImages/UnsplashThe new images depict the unspoilt desert wilderness where the city will be built. Saudi Arabia has been keen to highlight to ecological credentials of the project as it seeks to pivot away from fossil fuels as part of its Vision 2030 plan. The city, planners say, will run entirely on renewable energy and 95% of the surrounding landscape and sea will be "protected for nature."  The coral reefs and hidden wrecks of the Red Sea are presented as among the exotic attractionsAn photograph showing a diver in the Red Sea, Saudi Arabia, near the site of the planned Neom megacityGettyImages/Unsplash/NeomTabuk Province, where Neom is being built, has the longest stretch of Red Sea coastline in Saudi Arabia. As well as Neom, luxury residences and eco resorts are being built on islands off the coast.The kingdom aims to attract scuba divers and yachters to the resorts.  "Go diving in Tabuk before the rest of the world discovers this dive area. You will be rewarded with crystal-clear, warm waters and pristine coral reefs few people have ever dived," said the diving news outlet Scubaverse in 2022.   The first part of Neom slated to be finished is Sindalah, an island due to include yacht marinas and luxury hotels. Officials say it will be opened to visitors from 2024.A concept image of the island of Sindalah, a planned yachting resort due to form part of the Neom project.NEOM"The destination will create a new season for superyachts, a dream alternative for yacht owners who want to spend the winter in an easily accessible location," Luca Dini, CEO of Luca Dini studio which designed the island resort, told Arab News.A new airport opened in the resort in 2019. But critics believe that the scale and ambition of the project mean it may never be fully realised, and ambitions for millions to live there in around a decade seem fanciful, Money Week reported. The images present the desert site as a place of mystery and wonderAn photograph showing a nighttime view of mountains in the region in northwest Saudi Arabia where planners say Neom will be built.GettyImages/Unsplash/NeomThe main planned residential area of Neom is "The Line," a 130-mile long building tower that cuts through the desert and is described by designers as a horizontal skyscraper.Residents and visitors are promised sweeping views of the surrounding landscape. Saudi Arabia says it'll be able to preserve vast swaths of the desert, and will even begin reintroducing vanished wildlife.   But the glossy prospectus doesn't tell the whole story, and activists are raising alarm about Saudi Arabia's human-rights record.A Saudi Arabia flag flies behind barbed wires at the backyard in the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul on October 13, 2018Yasin AKGUL / AFP) (Photo by YASIN AKGUL/AFP via Getty ImagesSaudi Arabia in May sentenced three men to death from the Howeitat tribe, which traditionally lives on lands earmarked for Neom's development. The cause was that they refused to be evicted from the site, the UN said. "Despite being charged with terrorism, they were reportedly arrested for resisting forced evictions in the name of the Neom project and the construction of a 170km linear city called The Line," the UN experts said. The UN alleges that Saudi Arabian officials evicted the tribe from three villages in the area, and despite promises did not compensate them adequately. One man resisting eviction was killed by Saudi special forces, it said in May.And experts told Insider that recent deals with China hint at plans for the sweeping surveillance of Neom residentsSaudi security personnel monitor the hajj pilgrimage from a control room in Mina, near the holy city of Mecca, in October 2012.FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP via Getty ImagesCrown Prince Mohammed has presented himself as a reformer, keen to open up the kingdom to investment and liberalize the ultra-conservative society.But critics say that this masks a brutal authoritarian streak, and point to the crown prince's persecution of critics, the war he has waged in Yemen, and the 2018 assassination of dissident Jamal Khashoggi (the crown prince has denied any involvement in the killing.)Activists are alarmed by recent deals between Saudi Arabia and Chinese tech giants, which they say could enable Saudi security services to harvest data from residents and surveil them.  Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytMay 29th, 2023Related News

10 Things Before the Opening Bell: Negotiators race to finalize a tentative debt ceiling deal

Insider's Phil Rosen breaks down what to know in markets and the economy as Biden and McCarthy reach an agreement in principle on the debt ceiling. Happy Memorial Day, readers. Phil Rosen here in New York. (Did you see last night's Succession series finale?)Today's newsletter will be brief — below I've rounded up key stories to know before financial markets reopen on Tuesday. If this was forwarded to you, sign up here. Download Insider's app here.US President Joe Biden shakes hands as he presents a copy of his speech to House Speaker Kevin McCarthy of Calif., before he delivers his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress, on February 7, 2023 in the House Chamber of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC.Jacquelyn Martin-Pool/Getty Images1. The White House and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy reached an agreement in principle on the debt ceiling. The deal will allow government borrowing to rise and avoid a default ahead of a June 5 deadline. Negotiators are now racing to finalize the bill's text ahead of a vote which is expected to take place on Wednesday. Read more. 2. Nvidia has blown away its longtime rival Intel this year. The AI craze has powered triple-digit stock gains for the former, and no one else has been close to matching its meteoric rise. Full details.3. JPMorgan seems to be working on a ChatGPT-style tool that will enable AI-powered investing. A trademark application revealed that it could be called "IndexGPT," and Morgan Stanley is also planning to introduce a similar chatbot, CNBC reported. Still, analysts say these products will struggle with what investing legend Howard Marks called "second-level thinking."4. China won't catch up to the US economy because security concerns will sabotage growth, according to a Claremont McKenna professor. Both world powers are prioritizing national security above their economies, but Beijing will still suffer more, Minxin Pei wrote in a recent op-ed. As firms see growth taking a back seat, private investment in China has only climbed 0.4% so far this year.5. Bank of America strategists warned that the Fed could pop the AI bubble. In their view, investors shouldn't chase the nascent sector's hype as financial conditions tighten. More on that here.Curated by Phil Rosen in New York. Feedback or tips? Tweet @philrosenn or email by Jason Ma in Los Angeles and Hallam Bullock (@hallam_bullock) in London.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytMay 29th, 2023Related News

Get ready to see millions of Americans lose their jobs if Congress doesn"t raise the debt ceiling in the next few days

The US could default on its debt as early as June 5 if the debt ceiling isn't raised by then, and over a million of Americans' jobs are on the line. Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy.Drew Angerer/Getty Images The US could default on its debt as soon as June 5 if the debt ceiling isn't raised by then. Experts told Insider that even a short-term default could cost jobs in different industries. Biden and McCarthy reached an agreement in principle on Saturday. Congress has just days to raise the debt ceiling — and Americans' jobs are on the line.For months, Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy and President Joe Biden have been at odds over the best approach to raise the debt ceiling, and now, those negotiations are coming down to the wire. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has repeatedly warned McCarthy that the US could hurdle into a default in early June, after which point the government will run out of money to afford federal programs and pay out benefits that millions of Americans rely on, like Social Security.Biden and McCarthy finally reached an agreement on Saturday night, and they now have to sell the provisions to their respective parties.A default on the nation's debt is unprecedented, and there's no way to predict what exactly would happen to the economy should lawmakers fail to raise the debt ceiling before the deadline. But Moody's Analytics has previously estimated that even a short-term default could cost Americans over a million jobs, likely undoing the recovery the country has made since the pandemic. One scenario Moody's Analytics examined is a "prolonged breach scenario" involving a weeks-long default. Bernard Yaros, an economist at Moody's Analytics, told Insider that scenario would occur if "the X-date is hit in early June and lawmakers don't end the crisis until the end of July."That would translate to "7.8 million jobs lost from peak to trough," Yaros said. Professional and business services would see about 1.4 million job losses in this scenario, and health services would see just under 1 million jobs lost. Other industries would see over half a million jobs lost in this scenario, including construction. !function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(a){if(void 0!["datawrapper-height"]){var e=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var t in["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytMay 29th, 2023Related News

Markets are sounding alarms on China"s economy, but analysts say Wall Street is missing the big picture

"That's the one big negative factor that I worry about more than all the other things that we have talked about. Why is private investment so weak?" Chinese President Xi JinpingJohannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images Financial markets have been raising red flags recently about China's economy. That's because high expectations for a robust post-Covid rebound have largely failed to pan out. But analysts said Wall Street is being too short-sighted and not looking long term. Financial markets have been raising red flags recently about China's economy, but analysts said Wall Street is missing the big picture.Growth in the world's second largest economy accelerated to 4.5% in the first quarter from 2.9% in the fourth quarter following the relaxation of COVID restrictions late last year.But more recent data have pointed to slowing growth in retail sales as well as drops in home sales, industrial production and fixed-asset investment.That disappointed investors hoping for a bigger post-COVID rebound and led Wall Street to trim its growth estimates for the full year. Worries about China's economy have rippled through markets.Earlier this month, the yuan fell past a psychologically important level of 7 per dollar for the first time this year. The price of copper, once expected to see sizable gains due to high demand from Chinese factories, hit a four-month low in mid-May.Meanwhile, shares of luxury brands that are reliant on China's consumer base, have started tumbling on stagnant activity.Chinese equity markets were not immune to slowing performance, as the CSI 300 index continued to slip this week. At the end of April, declining hopes for added stimulus brought the Shenzhen and Shanghai indices down by $519 billion in one week alone.The stalling performance prompted Rockefeller International's Ruchir Sharma to call the rebound narrative a "charade."But for one analyst, the growing pessimism around China's economy could stem more from unrealistically high expectations and Wall Street's tendency to prioritize immediate metrics over long-term outlooks."I feel sorry for these people in some ways, because every time the Chinese release some data, they have to say something about it," Nicholas Lardy of the Peterson Institute for International Economics told Insider. Heightened anticipations may be due to China's response to the 2008 financial crisis, when Beijing infused the economy with massive stimulus and achieved double-digit growth, Pantheon Macroeconomics' Duncan Wrigley said. However, it also led to a huge debt hangover that China has worked to resolve for much of the last decade. So while demand is slowing, limiting debt growth is equally prioritized by party leaders, he said. The country set a more conservative 5% growth target in March, which both analysts see as achievable. Although the country will avoid full-scale stimulus to reach the goal, it has a number of tools to ensure growth keeps ticking upwards. Despite its aim to limit debt, China could increase the availability of cheap loans to sectors in need, as well as lift the lending quota for the three main policy banks, while allowing them to invest in local projects, Wrigley said.If this isn't enough, he noted that the People's Bank of China could ease financial conditions later in the year, such as decreasing the reserve requirement ratio for banks.But youth unemployment remains high, while heightened geopolitical risk may deny China's access to foreign technology. And private investment, a major source of growth in China, has nearly collapsed in the past 15 months, Lardy said.This may have to do with stringent regulation of Chinese business, as President Xi Jinping expands the role of the state in the market, dissuading business owners from investing in their firms, he said. "That's the one big negative factor that I worry about more than all the other things that we have talked about. Why is private investment so weak?" he said. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytMay 29th, 2023Related News

Zero Young Healthy Individuals Died Of COVID-19, Israeli Data Show

Zero Young Healthy Individuals Died Of COVID-19, Israeli Data Show Authored by Lia Onely via The Epoch Times, Zero healthy individuals under the age of 50 have died of COVID-19 in Israel, according to newly released data. “Zero deceased of 18–49 years of age with no underlying morbidities,” the Israel Ministry of Health (MOH) said in response to a formal request from an attorney. Officials noted that the statement only applies to COVID-19 deaths where the MOH conducted an epidemiological investigation and had received information about the underlying diseases. “Zero is a very, very clear number, and cannot be subject to interpretation,”  Yoav Yehezkelli, a specialist in internal medicine and medical management, and former lecturer in the Department of Emergency and Disaster Management at Tel Aviv University in Israel, told The Epoch Times. “Why were all the extreme measures of school closures, vaccination of children, and lockdowns needed?” he added. The MOH did respond to a request for comment. Freedom of Information Request The information was sparked by a freedom of information request filed by attorney Ori Xabi, who has been filing several such requests as he seeks to obtain information from the MOH regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and COVID-19 policies. Xabi asked to know the average age of people who died of COVID-19, segmented by vaccination status at the time of death; how many COVID-19 patients with no underlying morbidities under the age of 50 died; and the annual number of cardiac arrest cases between 2018 to 2022. According to the MOH response, the average age of vaccinated COVID-19 patients who died was 80.2 years. The average for the unvaccinated was 77.4 years. The MOH emphasized that the data they have about the underlying diseases of patients is partial since it relies on information provided by the patients or their relatives, if they chose to do so. And then, only in cases in which the MOH conducted an epidemiological investigation. Therefore “the available information does not necessarily reflect the health status of the patient” the MOH wrote adding that they do not have access to the patients’ medical records. It is not clear why the MOH responded to Xabi’s request using only cases where the MOH had conducted an epidemiological investigation, and which was limited to deceased patients where the families had cooperated, since in 2020 the MOH told the Israeli Knesset—the Israeli parliament—that they use an intelligence system that provides the MOH with extensive information about deceased patients that included “underlying diseases.” A document (pdf) from the Knesset Research and Information Center, dated June 7, 2020, stated that the MOH provided data to the Special Committee for the New COVID Virus about COVID-19 deaths—298 by that day at 4:30 p.m.—at the request of Yifat Shasha-Biton, a member of the Knesset, and the chair of that committee. The ministry’s intelligence system has data on gender, age, district of residence, and the underlying diseases of the deceased, according to the document. The system showed that about 94 percent of the deceased were 60 years or older and that there were no deceased with zero underlying diseases. In addition, on May 4, 2020, the Medical Directorate of the MOH in a letter (pdf) issued instructions to the heads of the hospitals and the medical departments of the Health Maintenance Organizations—national health care organizations—on how to fill out COVID-19 death notices, directing them to include underlying diseases. In a December 22, 2020 letter (pdf) the Medical Directorate to the managers of the hospitals stated that for every COVID-19 patient who died during the acute phase or due to complications of the illness later, or people who were positive for COVID-19 who died, a death notice and a summary of the case “must be sent to the COVID war room of the MOH.” They said the purpose was “to improve surveillance.” “It’s a bit naive” for the MOH to say they do not have the full data and access to the death certificates said Yehezkelli, who was also a founder of a team that advises the MOH’s director general. Yet this response from the MOH is meaningful, said Yehezkelli as “it finally reveals the truth.” A health worker administers a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to a pregnant woman at Clalit Health Services, in Tel Aviv, Israel, on Jan. 23, 2021. (Jack Guez/AFP via Getty Images) ‘False Presentation’ Studies and other data, including a study led by Stanford epidemiologist John Ioannidis, show that COVID-19 mortality, even with the original variant, was largely age-dependent. “It was definitely a disease that actually only endangered the elderly,” Yehezkelli said. Over the age of 60, mortality doubled every 5 years while under that age mortality was negligible, and “now we really see that it was zero under the age of 50, at least.” The MOH’s response showed that the average age of the COVID-19 deceased is about 80 years of age, which also indicates that “this is a disease of the elderly, almost exclusively,” said Yehezkelli. “That only means that what we were told for 3 years was not true,” he said. There may not have been many young people who got seriously ill, yet the MOH had emphasized cases of pregnant women hospitalized in critical condition and young healthy people who died because of COVID-19. It was not the true situation, he said. “They created a false presentation of a very severe epidemic that affects the entire population and therefore the entire population should also be vaccinated, regardless of age,” said Yehezkelli. If we are talking about people under the age of 50 that means that no pregnant women actually died of COVID-19, he said. The justification given for vaccinating pregnant women, young people, and children was that they too are affected by COVID-19. It was known back then that this was not the case “and we now see it clearly,” Yehezkelli said, asserting that the MOH has “lost the public’s trust” by making a “false presentation” of the dangers of COVID-19. Cardiac Arrest Data In response to Xabi’s recent FOI, the MOH provided the number of cardiac arrest cases from 2018 to 2020. They added, “The information for the years 2021–2022 does not exist in the office.” The MOH explained that “The registration of the causes of death of deceased persons is carried out, in accordance with the notification of death,” by the Central Bureau of Statistics, adding “the data for the years 2021–2022 have not yet been transferred to the Ministry of Health.” A study published in April 2022 that analyzed the dataset of the Israel National Emergency Medical Services (EMS) found a 25 percent increase in EMS calls due to cardiac arrests among 16- to 39-year-olds between January–May 2021. The COVID-19 vaccine rollout began in December 2020. Retsef Levi, a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management, was one of the researchers of the study. The MOH objected to the findings of the study in a post on Twitter where they said that “there is no connection between the EMS calls that were analyzed in the study and the COVID vaccines.” In a MOH webinar on Oct. 8, 2021, about the effectiveness and the safety of the COVID vaccines, Dr. Sharon Elroy-Pries, the head of Public Health Services at the Israel MOH said regarding Levi’s study: “This is one of the biggest fake news I have seen.” “The National Center for Disease Control did a very comprehensive analysis—including of the data of that study, [which were] EMS calls,” she said adding that “there was nothing. No more [cases of] heart attacks. No more calls to the ER.” She continued by saying that “in the mortality data from the beginning of 2021, you don’t see an increase in mortality except for COVID mortality. That is, if we look at excess mortality in the State of Israel we see it precisely at the peaks that were peaks of [COVID] morbidity in the State of Israel.” “When you remove the … morbidity from COVID at all ages, one sees either the same mortality rate as in previous years, or less,” she said, adding “there is no increase in heart attacks here.” Sharon Alroy-Preis, the head of Public Health Services at the Israel Ministry of Health at the Health Committee meeting to discuss special powers to deal with COVID-19 in Jerusalem on Feb. 6, 2023. (Dani Shem Tov / Knesset) In a February 2023 meeting of the Health Committee of the Knesset for extending the COVID special powers law, Elroy-Pries reiterated that the MOH does have access to COVID mortality data. “COVID has killed over 12,000 people in the State of Israel,” she said at the meeting, explaining further that this figure is known since “from the beginning of the epidemic, the Medical Directorate received people’s death certificates.” When asked about whether there is an increase in cardiac arrest cases in Israel among young people, Elroy-Pries said, “We do not see an increase in the death of young people,” adding “We’re checking it. We’re looking for it.” Levi said to The Epoch Times that the MOH attacked him personally and the EMS, and asked “If they don’t have data for 2021 and 2022 [according to the FOI], then how can they know that they don’t have an increase [in cardiac arrests]?” When the MOH says things that are contrary to science, said Levi, or are “contrary to the facts on a regular basis, you must ask yourself the question: are they doing it because they didn’t bother to read the science, or are they doing it even though they … read the science.” “Both scenarios are very serious,” he added. Vaccines Saved ‘Millions Around the World’: MOH The MOH did not reply to a request for comment from The Epoch Times. Yet about 2 hours after sending the request on May 25, the agency posted on its Twitter account a statement regarding Xabi’s FOI. “Following the manipulation that has been taking place in recent days regarding one of the Ministry of Health’s [reply to] Freedom of Information requests, we will clarify that the answers to the requests submitted under the Freedom of Information Law are, naturally, answered directly to the specific question that was asked. “In this case, the ministry was asked about mortality data and underlying diseases. The Ministry of Health ‘does not have’ access to the medical file [of patients], therefore information is only based on cases where an epidemiological investigation was carried out and the person or his family answered the question [regarding underlying morbidities]. Therefore, this is very limited information. This was of course clearly written in the answer [to the FOI]. “We will clarify: So far, 356 young people (18–49 years of age) have died of COVID. “Of these, only about half have documentation of an epidemiological investigation (184 deceased). “And only 7.5% (27 deceased) included an answer to the question regarding underlying diseases. The answer was provided based on this information. “The Ministry of Health is committed to maintaining the health of all citizens and making the information available in the Ministry transparently. This is how we acted [so far] and will continue to act. “We must not forget that the COVID epidemic has so far killed more than 12,500 people in Israel, caused severe and critical morbidity, and post-COVID symptoms that accompany some of those recovering to this day. “The vaccination campaign began in the midst of a third lockdown that resulted from an increase in morbidity and mortality and the opening of the economy was made possible thanks to the activation of the green passport, which its purpose was to reduce the risk of infection in mass events. “The vaccines have saved thousands of people in the state of Israel and millions around the world—the attempt to rewrite history is dangerous.” Following an administrative appeal filed by Xabi and colleagues, the MOH committed to publishing all-cause mortality segmented by vaccination status and age by the end of this month. This appeal is an ongoing case that followed a FOI request submitted to the MOH on Oct. 10, 2021, which was not answered within the time frame according to Israeli law, and the data provided by the agency during a number of hearings since has been incomplete. Tyler Durden Mon, 05/29/2023 - 06:20.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytMay 29th, 2023Related News

This Gen Z founder made an OnlyFans rival that has no nudity and sold it for $65 million

Harry Gestetner and Simon Pompan founded Fanfix as a platform for TikTokers to monetize their fanbases. But unlike OnlyFans, it doesn't allow nudity. From left: Harry Gestetner and Simon Pompan, the cofounders of Fanfix.Courtesy of Fanfix Harry Gestetner, 22, runs Fanfix, a platform where fans can subscribe to content. He said it sold for $65 million after sites including TikTok "failed" to help creators make money. He said the platform is "strictly clean" — though it's not all safe for work. Harry Gestetner is keen to reassure people that he doesn't live with his parents.He's sitting in front of a model airplane in his dad's home office as he speaks to Insider over Zoom from Los Angeles."I'm at my parents' house now because I had a family dinner last night, but I did actually move out," he said.The 22-year-old certainly doesn't need to live with his folks: He became a millionaire last year after his company, Fanfix, sold for $65 million, according to Crunchbase. Fanfix wouldn't confirm the amount beyond saying it was an eight-figure sum.Gestetner is the co-CEO of the platform, which he cofounded in 2020, that lets social-media creators and influencers monetize their fan bases by offering a monthly paid subscription for content such as day-in-the-life vlogs, DMs, and unpublished first-draft TikToks.It's a model broadly similar to OnlyFans, but with a major difference: it doesn't allow nudity.Gestetner calls FanFix: "Gen Z-first, TikTok-first, mobile-first."Pete Syme/InsiderUnlike OnlyFans, which is known for its adult content, and Patreon, which allows nudity in some contexts, Fanfix markets itself as offering an income stream for Gen Z influencers who want to make money from their fans, but who don't want to be associated with explicit content. They also need at least 10,000 followers across their social-media profiles to be eligible for joining Fanfix.Gestetner believes most famous creators on OnlyFans are "not actually doing any nudity for the most part — but they're associated with the extreme pornography that's going on" meaning they "lose out on brand deals."Avi Gandhi, the founder of Partner with Creators and the former head of creator partnerships at Patreon, told Insider that companies doing brand marketing are "very unlikely to invest in partnering with creators on OnlyFans because of the brand association."Some heralded the sale of Fanfix to SuperOrdinary, a "brand accelerator" that helps companies market themselves through influencer partnerships, as signaling that "the creator economy is here to stay."Fanfix said in April that it had over 10 million users and expects to have paid out $50 million in total to its 3,000 creators by the end of the year. Data seen by TechCrunch showed that a creator's average annual income on the platform is $70,000.Gestetner doesn't hold back on criticizing competitors, calling Patreon an "outdated, bulky desktop-first platform catered to our parents' generation" and OnlyFans a "porn site" with a "massive stigma surrounding it."But Fanfix is tiny compared to OnlyFans, which told Insider in 2021 that it had 180 million registered users — about 18 times the number of Fanfix users today.An entrepreneurial familyGestetner grew up in London and has a background of wealth and innovation.His great-great grandfather, David Gestetner — who he counts as an inspiration — invented an early photocopying machine in 1879. Ricoh bought the business in 1996 for $226 million, The Guardian reported. The publication also reported that Harry's father, Daniel, was one of the UK's richest young entrepreneurs in 2000.He attended Highgate School, which currently has fees of $29,000 a year, before moving to Los Angeles for high school.It was there, studying at Harvard-Westlake School — whose alumni include Lily Collins and Jake Gyllenhaal — that he met his cofounder, Simon Pompan.The pair studied business while in college and launched a charity called Fuel Our Heroes during the pandemic, using social media to raise over $350,000 for healthcare workers.From left: Simon Pompan, Tana Mongeau, Harry Gestetner, and Rory Noenan attend the Dizzy red-wine launch party.Unique Nicole/Getty ImagesDuring that time, Gestetner's cousin posted a TikTok, which got millions of views. Gestetner was frustrated that his cousin "couldn't make a penny" from it.Working from their dorm rooms, Gestetner and Pompan raised $1.3 million from the venture-capital firms Antler, Rough Draft Ventures, and Day One Ventures, to found Fanfix.The former Vine star Cameron Dallas also came on board as a cofounder and raised the platform's profile.'We don't venture into any of the more explicit areas'Fanfix's content guidelines define nudity as "photos, videos, and some digitally-created content that show sexual intercourse, genitals, and close-ups of fully-nude buttocks."But though Gestetner described it as a "strictly clean platform," a look through some of the most popular creators' accounts shows it's not all safe for work. There are close-ups of bikini-clad buttocks, pictures of feet, and videos of creators spitting. In DMs, there are images users can unlock for $25, captioned with the peach emoji. Clips of girls dancing in bikinis that creators claim TikTok took down under its ambiguous moderation policy on semi-nude videos often get re-uploaded to Fanfix.An illustration of Brooke Monk's Fanfix page and messages with fans.Courtesy of Fanfix"We allow what's the societal norm, and we don't venture into any of the more explicit areas," Gestetner said. "The most lewd stuff on our platform will be similar to the most lewd stuff on TikTok or Instagram."Savannah Demers, a 22-year-old with 2.2 million TikTok followers, said the no-nudity rule was the main draw for her to join Fanfix, explaining that she wanted "an outlet that is at a calmer level and reputation than other platforms might give" to let her create content she is "comfortable with."'Not a team of middle-aged men'From left: Cameron Dallas, Harry Gestetner, and Simon Pompan.FanfixGestetner calls Fanfix: "Gen Z-first, TikTok-first, mobile-first." It has over 50 staff who are mostly in their early 20s. "We're not sitting in a room with a whiteboard, theorizing what Gen Z might want, as a team of middle-aged men. We talk about what we want, and then we build that," he said.FanfixThe finance category on the site's "explore" page is playfully labeled with the "Stonks" meme, and Fanfix's desktop interface is designed with the proportions of a phone screen, but it doesn't have an app in app stores. Gestetner told a Spotify podcast in 2022 that applying Apple's 30% fees on in-app purchases would mean creators' earnings would drop dramatically, which he said would be "an absolutely ludicrous concept." Fanfix takes a 20% commission on creators' earnings — the same rate as OnlyFans.When SuperOrdinary bought Fanfix, Insider's Geoff Weiss reported that there were plans for product collaborations with the platform's creators.Gestetner said he is open with Fanfix creators on that he thinks they would always make more money on OnlyFans than Fanfix on a "per-creator basis," because of the expectation that fans will be able to see nudity on OnlyFans.Gandhi told Insider he doesn't think the two platforms are really competitors because they target different audiences. "Both of these platforms are building brands for very specific creator demographics and psychographics. Expanding outside of those once established will be challenging," Gandhi said.Gestetner said he feels the booming subscriptions market is up for grabs and that Fanfix could even "eclipse" OnlyFans in a few years, though he admits this is an ambition rather than a projection. "The reality is, the creator economy itself shouldn't have existed in the first place, because Instagram, Facebook, and then eventually, TikTok, should have taken care of monetization, as well as discovery," Gestetner said. "They failed at that. And they took advantage of the creators, and so a massive gap opened up for platforms like Patreon, platforms like us."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nytMay 29th, 2023Related News

Race To 100 Million Users. Who Did It The Fastest? And What Does This Mean For Productivity?

Race To 100 Million Users. Who Did It The Fastest? And What Does This Mean For Productivity? OpenAI's viral ChatGPT chatbot reached 100 million monthly active users in just two months in January after launching in November, making it the fastest-growing consumer application in history. For some context, it took TikTok nine months after its launch to reach 100 million users and Instagram 2.5 years.  TS Lombard's Dario Perkins told clients Thursday there are "large effects, and their macroeconomic impact could show up faster than economists anticipate – especially given the pace of technological adoption we are currently seeing." Perkins, who heads the global macro desk at TD, found that the widespread adoption of the viral chatbot might spark faster innovation:  ChatGPT gained 100 million users faster than any other application in history, and these fast adoption rates are not confined to individual users. Major corporations, such as Bain & Company, have entered into deals with OpenAI to use generative AI in their strategy consulting business, while companies like Expedia have integrated ChatGP T through plug-ins. The more exciting impact on living standards, however, is likely to come from the second of our productivity channels – the pace of technological innovation. Generative AI can significantly expedite the R&D process by automating complex tasks, analysing vast datasets and predicting potential outcomes. It has already been useful in biological research: DeepMind's AlphaFold predicted the 3-D structure of almost every known protein – a task that had been predicted to take decades of human labour (according to the journal Science, the most important scientific breakthrough of 2021).  This, alongside other AI breakthroughs, has led Dr. David Baker from the Institute for Protein Design to estimate that the pace of innovation in his field is now 10 times higher than it was 18 months ago. If we see rapid increases in innovation across other areas, the impact on productivity could be transformative. He stated AI "has huge potential to boost economy-wide productivity" and cited a recent MIT study that showed a massive improvement in productivity while using ChatGPT. Also, much of the productivity gains were seen between 21 to 40-year-olds.  Perkins mentioned "massive uncertainties about where AI is ultimately headed" from here. And he wasn't too concerned about layoffs, unlike Goldman, who has warned about 300 million jobs could be displaced by AI in the US and Europe.  And AI is here to stay, unlike Zuck's overhyped metaverse.  So the bottom line, as Perkins laid out, is that massive and rapid adoption of ChatGPT will "deliver significant productivity improvements" for society. He added, "This is a big deal for a global economy that has been stuck in a long secular productivity funk." However, he wasn't too concerned about jobs being displaced, unlike other macro desks.  "The US has had the biggest collapse of durable goods inflation in the near 70-year history of the measure. The plunge of over 20 percentage points is more than twice the previous record" - UBS ChatGPT will do the same to service (wage) inflation — zerohedge (@zerohedge) May 26, 2023 There is much more in the full TS Lombard report available to pro subs in the usual place.  Tyler Durden Sun, 05/28/2023 - 22:30.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytMay 28th, 2023Related News