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Don"t Fight The Fed

Don"t Fight The Fed.....»»

Category: topSource: seekingalphaJun 21st, 2019

Utility ETFs Scaling New Highs

Although the broad stock market has staged a nice comeback from the worst first-half performance, volatility and uncertainty persist, and the utilities sector is making the most of it. Although the broad stock market has staged a nice comeback from the worst first-half performance, volatility and uncertainty persist, and the utilities sector is making the most of it. No wonder, most utility stocks and ETFs are hitting fresh highs.Utilities Select Sector SPDR XLU, Vanguard Utilities ETF VPU, iShares U.S. Utilities ETF IDU, Fidelity MSCI Utilities Index ETF FUTY and Invesco DWA Utilities Momentum ETF PUI are the popular funds that are hit a new one-year high in the recent trading session. These products carry a Zacks ETF Rank #3 (Hold) (see: all the Utilities ETFs here).Here, we discuss some strong reasons for the outperformance of the sector and ETFs. These factors are likely to fuel the rally in the coming weeks as well:Defensive InvestmentBeing a low-beta sector, utility is relatively protected from large swings (ups and downs) in the stock market and is thus considered a defensive investment or safe haven amid economic or political turmoil. Currently, the stock market is ruffled by various issues such as the lingering Russia-Ukraine conflict, a slowdown in China, inflationary pressure and recession fears.Encouraging FundamentalsYields have declined over the past month. The 10-year Treasury yield currently stands at 2.89%, down from 3.04% a month ago. The drop in yields has compelled investors to flock to the utilities sector in search of juicy yields. This is especially true as utilities offer solid dividend payouts and excellent capital appreciation over the longer term (read: 5 Most-Loved Dividend ETFs of This Year).The Fed hiked interest rates for the fourth consecutive time this year, taking the benchmark rate in the range of 2.25% and 2.5% to fight inflation. However, easing inflation coupled with recession fears has spurred bets for a less aggressive tightening policy.Further, the sector is benefiting from an ever-increasing population, which is pushing up demand for utility supplies like water, gas and electricity.Solid Zacks RankThe upside to the utilities sector is confirmed by the Zacks Sector Rank in the top 25%, suggesting continued outperformance in the coming months.ETFs in FocusUtilities Select Sector SPDR (XLU)With an AUM of $17.6 billion, Utilities Select Sector SPDR seeks to provide exposure to companies from the electric utility, water utility, multi-utility, independent power and renewable electricity producers, and gas utility industries. XLU follows the Utilities Select Sector Index, holding 29 stocks in its basket. Electric utilities take the top spot among sectors at 63.9%, closely followed by multi utilities (30.4%).Utilities Select Sector SPDR charges 10 bps of annual fees and sees a heavy volume of 12.3 million shares, on average. XLU has rallied 9.8% in the year-to-date timeframe.Vanguard Utilities ETF (VPU)Vanguard Utilities ETF follows the MSCI US Investable Market Utilities 25/50 Index, holding 65 securities in its basket, with none accounting for more than 14% share. More than half of the portfolio is allocated to electric utilities, closely followed by multi utilities (27.6%).Vanguard Utilities ETF charges 10 bps in annual fees and sees a good volume of around 254,000 shares on average. It has AUM of $6.3 billion and is up 9.2% this year.iShares U.S. Utilities ETF (IDU)iShares U.S. Utilities ETF tracks the Russell 1000 Utilities RIC 22.5/45 Capped Index. It holds a basket of 44 securities with a slight tilt toward the top firm at 13.6%, while others make up for less than 6.7%. Here again, electric utilities dominate the portfolio at 56.6%, followed by multi utilities (25.5%).iShares U.S. Utilities ETF has amassed $1.1 million in its asset base while trades in a good volume of 117,000 shares a day on average. The fund charges 41 bps in annual fees and has gained 8.8% this year (read: Utilities ETF Hits New 52-Week High).Fidelity MSCI Utilities Index ETF (FUTY)Fidelity MSCI Utilities Index ETF provides exposure to 69 utilities stocks with AUM of $2.3 billion. This is done by tracking the MSCI USA IMI Utilities Index. Here too, electric utilities and multi utilities are the top two sectors with 59.2% and 27.6% share, respectively.Fidelity MSCI Utilities Index ETF has 0.08% in expense ratio while the average daily volume is good at 417,000 shares a day. It has gained 9.2% so far this year.Invesco DWA Utilities Momentum ETF (PUI)Invesco DWA Utilities Momentum ETF offers exposure to 38 companies that are showing relative strength (momentum) and tracks the DWA Utilities Technical Leaders Index. Electric utilities and multi utilities account for 41.9% and 23.1% of assets, respectively, while gas utilities round off the next spot with double-digit exposure.Invesco DWA Utilities Momentum ETF charges 60 bps in annual fees and sees a light volume of around 8,000 shares on average. It has AUM of $87.7 million and has gained 7.8% this year. Want key ETF info delivered straight to your inbox? Zacks’ free Fund Newsletter will brief you on top news and analysis, as well as top-performing ETFs, each week.Get it free >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Invesco DWA Utilities Momentum ETF (PUI): ETF Research Reports Utilities Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLU): ETF Research Reports Vanguard Utilities ETF (VPU): ETF Research Reports Fidelity MSCI Utilities Index ETF (FUTY): ETF Research Reports iShares U.S. Utilities ETF (IDU): ETF Research Reports To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacks3 hr. 46 min. ago

QIAGEN"s (QGEN) New Syndromic Test to Combat Monkeypox Spread

QIAGEN (QGEN) joins the global fight against monkeypox with the launch of its novel QIAstat-Dx Viral Vesicular Panel RUO. QIAGEN N.V. QGEN recently launched the QIAstat-Dx Viral Vesicular Panel RUO— the first syndromic test that can distinguish between monkeypox and five other pathogens causing similar symptoms. This launch is part of QIAGEN’s efforts to combat the spread of monkeypox, which has been recently declared a public health emergency by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. government.This novel research use only (RUO) panel is available in cartridge form that can be run on QIAGEN’s QIAstat-Dx automated syndromic testing devices. The panel’s RUO-status indicates that it can only be used for the surveillance of monkeypox cases at present, and not for screening or diagnostics purposes. However, the company is prepared to make applications for clinical use if authorities in the United States and the European Union open new diagnostic pathways in response to the public health emergency.Per management, surveillance is an essential tool in the fight against infectious diseases. In this regard, the novel QIAstat-Dx Viral Vesicular Panel, in combination with the QIAstat-Dx platform, will enable medical researchers to identify monkeypox using gold-standard PCR testing technology within almost an hour.Applications of the New RUO PanelThe QIAstat-Dx Viral Vesicular Panel RUO tests for pathogens that produce similar-looking vesicular lesions, including the two known forms of monkeypox virus (the West African and Congo Basin clades), herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV1), HSV2, human herpesvirus 6 (HH6), varicella-zoster virus (VZV) and enterovirus. It also enables monkeypox detection in wastewater, a surveillance method that was useful during the COVID-19 crisis.More on the NewsThe QIAstat syndromic testing solution adds to the company’s broad portfolio, which addresses all testing needs. The concept of syndromic testing has demonstrated its value, especially during the pandemic, with the launch of QIAstat-Dx Respiratory SARS-CoV-2 panel. The company also unveiled the high-throughput QIAstat-Dx Rise device, which can process up to 160 tests per day. Moreover, QIAGEN has expanded its syndromic testing to other areas, including gastrointestinal conditions and meningitis.Industry ProspectsPer a report published in Research and Markets, the syndromic multiplex diagnostic market is expected to see a CAGR of nearly 7.2% during 2022-2027. Factors such as the increasing number of infectious cases and diseases and the growing incidence of side effects associated with the use of antibiotics can be attributable to market growth.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchGiven the market prospects, QIAGEN’s latest launch seems well-timed.Other Notable DevelopmentsThis month, QIAGEN expanded its next-generation sequencing portfolio with the launch of QIAseq Targeted DNA Pro Panels and the QIAseq UPXome RNA Library Kit. These new innovations established new standards in preparing samples for identifying their nucleic acid sequences. The QIAseq Targeted DNA Pro Panels halve the library preparation time required for sequencing samples. Meanwhile, the novel low-input kit for RNA sequencing lowers disposable plastics use by 90%.In July 2022, the company introduced a series of enhancements for its QIAcuity series of digital PCR (dPCR) instruments to drive greater use among customers, particularly in the biopharma industry. The company added ten new QIAcuity Cell and Gene Therapy (CGT) dPCR Assays for quantification of adeno-associated virus titer and three novel QIAcuity Residual DNA Quantification Kits for checking carryover of host cell DNA. The company also released QIAcuity Software Suite with expanded functionality to support good manufacturing practice compliance.Share Price PerformanceThe stock has outperformed its industry in the past year. It has lost 11.4% compared with the industry’s 36% fall.Zacks Rank and Key PicksCurrently, QIAGEN carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).A few better-ranked stocks in the broader medical space that investors can consider are AMN Healthcare Services, Inc. AMN, Molina Healthcare, Inc. MOH and Patterson Companies, Inc. PDCO.AMN Healthcare has a long-term earnings growth rate of 3.2%. The company surpassed earnings estimates in the trailing four quarters, delivering a surprise of 15.7%, on average. It currently flaunts a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.AMN Healthcare has outperformed its industry in the past year. AMN has gained 4.4% against the industry’s 30% fall.Molina Healthcare has a long-term earnings growth rate of 16.4%. The company surpassed earnings estimates in the trailing four quarters, delivering a surprise of 3.2%, on average. It currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).Molina Healthcare has underperformed its industry in the past year. MOH has gained 23.7% against the industry’s 26.9% growth.Patterson Companies has an estimated long-term growth rate of 7.9%. The company’s earnings surpassed estimates in all the trailing four quarters, the average beat being 16.5%. It currently flaunts a Zacks Rank #2.Patterson Companies has outperformed its industry in the past year. PDCO has gained 0.6% compared with the industry’s 6.3% fall in the past year. How to Profit from the Hot Electric Vehicle Industry Global electric car sales in 2021 more than doubled their 2020 numbers. And today, the electric vehicle (EV) technology and very nature of the business is changing quickly. The next push for future technologies is happening now and investors who get in early could see exceptional profits. See Zacks' Top Stocks to Profit from the EV Revolution >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Molina Healthcare, Inc (MOH): Free Stock Analysis Report QIAGEN N.V. (QGEN): Free Stock Analysis Report Patterson Companies, Inc. (PDCO): Free Stock Analysis Report AMN Healthcare Services Inc (AMN): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacks3 hr. 46 min. ago

Heavyweight champ Oleksandr Usyk will defend his title in a rematch against Anthony Joshua on August 20 — here"s how to livestream the fight

Anthony Joshua will face Oleksandr Usyk for the heavyweight WBA, WBO, and IBF belts. You can stream the fight on August 20 with a DAZN subscription. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.Anthony Joshua throws a punch towards Oleksandr Usyk during their September 2021 heavyweight title fightJulian Finney / Getty Images Anthony Joshua will fight Oleksandr Usyk for the heavyweight WBA, WBO, and IBF belts on August 20. The fight is a rematch; Usyk beat Joshua by unanimous decision to win the belts in September 2021. Usyk vs. Joshua 2 will be streamed by DAZN ($20/month), with the main event planned for 5:30 p.m. ET. Undefeated Ukrainian heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk (19-0, 13 KOs) will defend his titles against Anthony Joshua (24-2, 22 KOs) in an August 20 rematch in Saudi Arabia. DAZN will stream the fight, with coverage starting at noon ET and the main event expected to begin at 5:30 p.m. ET.Usyk defeated Joshua by unanimous decision to claim the WBA, WBO, and IBF titles in September 2021, and Joshua invoked the rematch clause in their fight contract for a chance to win back the belts. This is the second time since 2019 that Joshua is looking to reclaim his lost belts; the British born fighter suffered a surprising TKO loss to Andy Ruiz Jr. in June 2019 before returning to defeat Ruiz six months later.Usyk spent time in a battalion earlier this year to support Ukraine's defense against the ongoing Russian invasion, but left the country to begin training for his rematch with Joshua. He was previously the undisputed cruiserweight champion of the world, before defeating Joshua in his third heavyweight fight.How to watch Usyk vs. Joshua 2You can watch Usyk vs. Joshua 2 on August 20 with a subscription to the sports streaming service DAZN. The undercard fights start at noon ET and the main-event ring walk is expected to begin at 5:30 p.m. ET. DAZN costs $20 a month or $150 per year, and there won't be any additional cost to stream the fight. The DAZN app is available on Apple and Android devices, Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Xbox, PlayStation, and smart TVs from LG, Samsung, and Vizio. You can also stream DAZN in your computer browser.Specific regions will be unable to stream via DAZN, including the UK, Ireland, Ukraine, and the Middle East and North Africa. Viewers in those regions should check their local TV provider for more information.Usyk vs. Joshua 2 fight cardRashed Belhasa versus Traycho Georgiev [Welterweight]Ziyad Almaayouf versus Jose Alatorre [Light welterweight]Bader Al Samreen versus Fauder Tarverdi [Lightweight]Ben Whittaker versus Petar Nosic [Super middleweight]Daniel Lapin versus Jozef Jurko [Light heavyweight]Ramla Ali versus Crystal Garcia Nova [Women's super bantamweight]Andrew Tabiti versus James Wilson [Heavyweight]Badou Jack versus Richard Rivera [Cruiserweight]Callum Smith versus Mathieu Bauderlique [Light heavyweight]Filip Hrgovic versus Zhilei Zhang [IBF heavyweight title eliminator]Oleksandr Usyk versus Anthony Joshua [WBO, WBA, IBF heavyweight title fight]Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nyt4 hr. 2 min. ago

Kamaru Usman enters UFC 278 just one victory away from tying the record for most consecutive wins — here"s how to watch on ESPN+

Leon Edwards will challenge Kamaru Usman in UFC 278 on August 20. ESPN+ members can order the PPV fight for $75. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.Dana White wraps the UFC championship belt around Kamaru Usman's waist.Photo by Getty Images. UFC 278 will stream live on August 20, with the main card starting at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+. Leon Edwards will challenge UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman in the main event. The main card is a pay-per-view fight that costs $75 in addition to an ESPN+ subscription ($7/month). UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman will look to continue his streak of dominance as he faces challenger Leon Edwards at UFC 278 in Salt Lake City, Utah, on August 20. The main event will be streamed on ESPN+ starting at 10 p.m. ET with a $75 pay-per-view fee. UFC 278 prelims will be simulcast on ABC, ESPN, and ESPN+ starting at 8 p.m. ET.Usman has won 15 straight fights since his UFC debut in 2015, including five successful defenses of the welterweight championship. Usman has been sidelined since suffering a broken hand in November 2021, but hopes to tie UFC legend Anderson Silva's record of 16 straight victories. Edwards was one of the first fighters to fall to Usman in UFC, but has maintained his own unbeaten streak in 10 fights since that 2015 loss.How to watch UFC 278You can watch the main event of UFC 278 on ESPN+ at 10 p.m. ET on August 20. The main card requires an ESPN+ subscription ($7/month) and an extra PPV fee of $75. Before the main event, UFC Fight Pass subscribers can watch the early prelims at 6:30 p.m. ET. The prelims will then start at 8 p.m. ET on the ESPN cable channel, ABC network, and ESPN+.You can access the ESPN+ app on all major mobile and streaming devices, including Amazon Fire, Apple, Android, Chromecast, PS4, Xbox One, Roku, Samsung smart TVs, and more.Ways to save on the UFC 278 pay-per-view priceIf you plan on signing up for ESPN+ to watch UFC 278, you can take advantage of a special discounted bundle.New subscribers can purchase a year-long ESPN+ membership with access to UFC 278 included for a total of $99.98. That's more than 30% off the regular combined price of an annual plan and a PPV match. Following your first year of service, ESPN+ will then renew for the regular annual price.Here's the fight card for UFC 278: Usman vs. Edwards 2ESPNEarly Prelims — 6:30 p.m. ET,  3 p.m. PT on UFC Fight PassDaniel Da Silva versus Victor Altamirano [Flyweight]Aoriqileng versus Jay Perrin [Bantamweight]Amir Albazi versus Francisco Figueiredo [Flyweight]Prelims — 8 p.m. ET, 5 p.m. PT on ABC, ESPN, and ESPN+Aj Fletcher versus Ange Loosa [Welterweight]Season Woodson versus Luis Saldana [Featherweight]Leonardo Santos versus Jared Gordon [Lightweight]Marcin Tybura versus Alexander Romanov [Heavyweight]Main Card — 10 p.m. ET, 7 p.m. PT on ESPN+Tyson Pedro versus Harry Hunsucker [Light heavyweight]Wu Yanan versus Lucie Pudilova [Women's bantamweight]José Aldo versus Merab Dvalishvili [Bantamweight]Paulo Costa versus Luke Rockhold [Middleweight]Kamaru Usman versus Leon Edwards [Welterweight]Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nyt4 hr. 2 min. ago

Bond Report: 10-year Treasury yield hits highest in month as Fed’s Barkin says officials will do what it takes to fight inflation

U.S. bond yields rise Friday, sending the 10- and 30-year maturities up for a third straight week......»»

Category: topSource: marketwatch5 hr. 2 min. ago

A prison where the prisoners were in charge

The General Penitentiary of Venezuela was a place where inmates mostly roamed freely. But there was also a rigid, if convoluted, code of conduct. Inmates are seen praying early in the morning. At the time, inmates here have run afoul of La Routina and were awaiting punishment would stay here.Oscar B. Castillo Oscar B. Castillo, a documentary photographer, had extraordinary access to Venezuela's PGV prison during an extended period when it was controlled by inmates. This photo essay was adapted from Castillo's book about the Free Convict hip-hop collective. The book, "Esos Que Saben," was published this month.  One of Venezuela's hottest venues for musicians and sports stars was, for part of the last decade, a maximum-security prison run by its own inmates. "Party at the PGV tonight," local DJs would announce over the radio. Visitors would come from the nearby towns, or all the way from the capital, Caracas, 100 miles away. The PGV, or the General Penitentiary of Venezuela, was a place where inmates mostly roamed freely. The cell blocks had been torn out and there was no "behind bars." But there was also a rigid, if convoluted, code of conduct that was maintained by gangs and an arsenal of heavy weapons. Infractions were met with brutal punishments.Visitors were considered sacred, and off-limits. The PGV was at its best on Visitors' Days — which could run for weeks since there wasn't a formal limit.  Christmas, Mother's Day, or the birthdays of gang leaders who ran the place were always a good excuse to put on concerts, or bring in bouncy castles, clowns, and hot dog carts for visiting kids. As night fell, DJs would be brought in to perform in the penitentiary's central square with electronic music, laser shows, and fireworks. A prisoner dances with a woman during a Visitors' Day event at the PGV.Oscar B. CastilloKids play and jump in one of the several bouncy castles that prisoners set up on Visitor days.Oscar B. CastilloAs a group of Mariachis played songs about maternal love during a Mother's Day celebration at the prison, the mother of an inmate walked onto the stage and joined the performance.Oscar B. CastilloOutside/Inside From the outside, there were vestiges of ordinary prison infrastructure: High fences heavily crowned with barbed wire, control towers, and checkpoints manned by military officers armed with rifles and machine guns. Long lines of relatives, mostly women and kids, carrying large bags of goods and tired expressions on their faces, lined up under the scorching heat to submit to searches — or be made to pay bribes — before being allowed through. But look closer, and you would have seen a thin fence. On one side were guards, employed by the state and confined to the prison's perimeter. On the other side, manning the PGV's entrance, a select group of prisoners held far more powerful guns, and many more of them. Once inside, most inmates — everyone here was an inmate — walked around freely through the maze of corridors, pavilions, and wards. In some areas, shacks and other private dwellings had been erected.  From the alleyways and through the prison's windows, the rugged mountain landscape, which lent the town of San Juan de Los Morros its name, could be seen in the distance — beautiful, but also painful, for how it reminded prisoners of their lost freedom. The PGV first opened in 1948, billed as a model South American prison where prisoners could work the soil, care for animals, and live in the relative open. But starting around 2007, as the institutional structure of Venezuela crumbled and mafia activity and corruption spiraled out of control, prison gangs amassed weapons and drugs and, with it, leverage. After years of continuous abandonment and failed policies, police and soldiers were often interchangable with criminals, and human rights groups documented their abuses.Around 2009, the criminal group called "El Carro" (The Car), under the command of El Principal, had taken over the daily workings of the PGV.  By 2010, many of Venezuela's biggest male prisons were under the effective control of inmates.  The General Penitentiary of Venezuela, known as the PGV.Oscar B. CastilloChristian evangelist prisoners during a prayer visit from Caracas. These prisoners had their own zone at the PGV and were responsible for jobs like cleaning and carrying water. They could not roam around the prison after 7pm.Oscar B. CastilloHéctor, right, playfully points a gun at another inmate.Oscar B. CastilloDrugs laid out on a table for sale.Oscar B. CastilloLa RutinaAt the PGV's entrance was a makeshift market. There, entrepreneurial prisoners filled tables with basic items, like bread and DVDs, or marijuana joints that were artfully arranged to look like a bouquet of flowers. More stands lined the prison's narrow corridors, which reverberated with the rhythms of Salsa and Reggaeton. You might find barbeque meat, or rum or vodka-based cocktails spun in blenders and served with a lime twist. Even in those times when extreme shortages plagued Venezuela, here at the PGV, people could find practically anything they wished to buy. On visitor days, you might see free Venezuelans shopping for toilet paper, flour or cooking oil — basic products that had completely disappeared from supermarkets shelves.All of this happened under the attentive eyes of Los Luceros. Select members of the gangs that ran the PGV, they answered to orders from the Principal. Armed with revolvers, rifles, and even hand grenades, Los Luceros made sure that everything ran smoothly. They also enforced the payment of an obligatory weekly tax, called "La Causa," which officially paid for prison maintenance and security (more weapons), as well as parties and other activities. For inmates, life at the PGV was like walking a tightrope over a pool of sharks. Abiding by an unwritten code known as La Rutina was obligatory, and prisoners lived under the constant threat of ruthless punishment if they stepped outside of it. A minor offense, or the wrong look, might make you into a pariah, or lead to a punishment that could be the last thing seen in this world. Stealing a cigarette could result in a bullet through your hand. On Mondays, in an improvised arena called the Coliseum, dozens of inmates were compelled to settle their debts or other disputes over knife fights. Ordinary words like egg, milk or water — that in Venezuelan slang might carry a vague sexual connotation — were banned because of their potential to offend other inmates. Saying them could get you banished to dirty and trash-filled corners of the prison, far from the markets and the fun.Free Convict For three years, from the beginning of 2014 until Venezuelan authorities finally shut the place down in 2016, I had extraordinary access to the PGV as a Venezuelan documentary photographer. At that point, the PGV had a population of around 5,000 people — more than six times its intended capacity. Most of the inmates were still in legal limbo; many hadn't yet been tried for their alleged offense, or given an exact sentence. It was also extraordinarily violent: In 2014, there were at least 309 homicides in Venezuelan prisons, where some 60,000 prisoners were held, according to the Venezuelan Prisons Observatory. The recording studio that Free Convict group built inside the prison.Oscar B. CastilloAn inmate rides a motorcycle in one of PGV's sports fields. Motorcycles of all sizes from 80cc to 650cc were common inside the jail.Oscar B. CastilloFree Convict's recording studio at the PGV.Oscar B. CastilloI was at the PGV with Free Convict, a Hip Hop collective formed by 12 inmates and to try to understand their lives in all of their  complexities. These men had survived gang life, street violence, drugs, and now this bizarre penitentiary existence. They were now looking to chart a new path for themselves, making rhymes around the themes of non-violence, self-improvement, and redemption. In the early days, Free Convict would gather in a Freestyle circle in the prison's central square. The meetings became bigger and more frequent, and eventually even the PGV's toughest bosses began to show them respect. (It helped that their leader, Ray Martinez, was part of the "El Carro" gang that controlled the prison.) Through the same cracks by which drugs and weapons flowed into the PGV, Free Convict managed to smuggle in  a recording studio, where they recorded a full album and produce music videos. In time, they got to be good enough, and famous enough, to attract collaborators both from inside the prison and beyond its walls. Only in total chaos, as Venezuela was of those years, would a place like the PGV be possible. Out of that anarchic landscape, Free Convict offered the possibility of a different way of life, a fresh start, and an oasis in the midst of madness. HéctorOne of the inmates behind Free Convict was a man named Héctor. Like a few of the others, he had arrived at the PGV as something of a stereotype of the hardened criminal. By the time I met him, he was much more interested in self-reflection and finding redemption. Born in 1992, Héctor came up in the Pinto Salinas neighborhood of Caracas. As a kid, he was a promising basketball player. But his future in the sport was cut short in 2010. His gang was fighting for control of the area, a notorious staging ground for drug distribution, and he got caught in a hail of bullets that nearly killed him and tore up one of his arms at the elbow. Héctor.Oscar B. CastilloBy 2012, the year Héctor was sent to the PGV for being an accomplice to a homicide, his two brothers had been killed. Humberto, the oldest, was gunned down near their home in Pinto Salinas in 2008. Junior, the youngest, died a similar death in 2011. Now, another son seemed to be heading down the same inexorable path.Like most prisoners at the PGV, Héctor depended on his family, outside, to bring him things to sell at the market. In good times, he might make enough to pay La Causa, take care of his needs, and even send some profits home. The best bet for making money was to set up a table selling crack, cocaine, base paste, marijuana and blunts. But even in this environment, where drugs could be sold and consumed out in the open, this line of work could be unpredictable and dangerous. Héctor liked the money; the money was useful to him. But selling drugs brought problems. So Héctor mostly avoided it. At one point, he sold nails, screws, wires, and pieces of wood to inmates — coveted objects that inmates used to build improvised shacks. If he got his hands on some flour, he might set up a stand selling banana cake or Venezuelan arepas.Héctor lies with his mother, whom he calls "La Pucha," during a Visitors day at the PGV. Venezuela's violence has taken a heavy toll on La Pucha, who lost two sons and whose third, Héctor, was locked up for six years.Oscar B. CastilloWhenever possible, he'd hoped to make enough money so his mother, Rosalia Rivero, who worked as a janitor and whom he playfully called "La Pucha," could travel from Caracas for a Visitors Day. On these visits, she would head straight to her son's room, willfully ignoring the strangeness she passed along the way. She was used to seeing drugs and weapons, and she associated both with losing two of her sons, and almost losing a third. At the PGV, she found Héctor a changed man. Héctor was never an angel; nobody in Free Convict was. But now he was searching for something different. Together with the rest of Free Convict, Héctor had resolved to take control of his life, and break the cycle that had put him on the frontlines of the street wars that were tearing apart Venezuela and that nobody had asked for. To do that, Héctor had to sharpen his talent, and believe in himself.Héctor, center, and two other members of Free Convict are seen seated at the highest point of the PGV as they use a drone to record a music video. Once the church bell tower, it became a command post for prison gangs to watch the perimeter of the PGV. Bullet holes testify to the many battles between prisoners and authorities.Oscar B. CastilloBoom!By 2016, the situation in Venezuela had become catastrophic. Inflation was out of control and finding basic items had become nearly impossible. At the PGV, families were barely able to send help. Inmates went from drinking good rum at parties to making their own alcohol, from fermenting banana skin, in plastic Gatorade bottles. Instead of manning tables piled high with drugs, inmates like Héctor scraped together money selling single cigarettes or hot chocolate. La Causa had to be paid first. There was barely any money for food. The beginning of the end of the PGV came in September of 2016. Musicians and sports players had been brought in, along with the usual flood of friends and family from the outside, to celebrate the birthday of the PGV's big boss, Franklin "Viru Viru." Trophies from sports events and portraits of gang bosses, some allegedly killed by police after their release, are displayed in a central area of the PGV.Oscar B. CastilloInmates at the overcrowded PGV sleep on the floor and makeshift hammocks. The prison housed more than 6 times its expected capacity.Oscar B. CastilloThen, suddenly, BOOM, a hand grenade explosion caused the prison's foundation to tremble. Smoke was everywhere. Some people screamed in agony, others ran in all directions. In the confusion, Los Luceros pointed their guns at each other, looking for signs of treason.When the black cloud had cleared, there was a hellish scene of wounded people and dead bodies. Visitors and prisoners alike were among the almost 20 victims. Afterwards, tension and fear were everywhere, and the prison divided into warring factions. Punishment, including murder, was more common, and even more random. Seeing an opening, forces from the state finally stormed the prison. For two weeks, there was fighting, leading to an estimated 80 deaths. There was no water or electricity. Starving inmates killed their pets for food, or consumed whatever drugs they could find to fight off hunger. Tuberculosis was plaguing the prison and infected prisoners were dying daily. When it was finally over, government soldiers emptied the PGV and inmates were sent to other detention centers around the country. Free Convict scrambled to stay in touch, but finding out who had ended up where was almost impossible.Free Convict, which by then was better and more popular than ever, seemed to be dying. Héctor ended up at Tocuyito, another prisoner-controlled prison, where he stayed for another two years.CaracasOne day in 2020 — six years after I began documenting Free Convict at the PGV — I went to a recording studio in Caracas to meet up with the collective. Nearly all of them had been released, and they were trying to keep Free Convict's work alive from the outside. Free in Caracas, there was still so much to navigate. The immediate problem was Héctor. His family hadn't heard from him in three days. At first, the police said they had no record of him being arrested. Now, thanks to pressure from his family, they were saying he had been arrested, and would be released soon. We predicted he'd come to the studio directly, and were waiting for him there. When he finally arrived, fear, rage, and frustration filled his eyes. He told us that he had been in his neighborhood with his cousin, known as "The Cat," when police arrived and shot his cousin dead. They'd then arrested Héctor, who now told us he'd been spared only thanks to a divine intervention.Héctor, in Caracas, is seen with local kids he helps mentor.Oscar B. CastilloMembers of Free Convict and Otro Enfoque, a local NGO, are seen late at night visiting a group of kids living under a bridge in Caracas. The river below receives water from the city's sewers. Free Convict uses their history with crime and incarceration to collaborate on initiatives that inspire crime-prevention, non-violence, and change.Oscar B. CastilloWe couldn't confirm Héctor's story, but there were plenty of others like it. Later that year, the United Nations would call on President Nicolas Maduro to disband various police units that had been behind extrajudicial killings and "crimes against humanity."It was possible that Héctor had actually been spared because, since his release, he'd become relatively well-known both for his work with Free Convict and for his anti-violence and community-building work in prisons, schools, and other areas affected by violence and exclusion. Having overcome so much in an upside-down Venezuela where police forces could turn their guns on civilians and prisoners controlled the prisons, Héctor is a survivor.  After so many close calls with death and so much adversity, he had done so much to rebuild his life and forge a new path. His mistakes were part of who he was, but the actions he had taken in his life because of those mistakes, and his skill in communicating the things he'd learned, made him a valued mentor to so many Caracus youths who were in a desperate search for new paths to walk away from violence.But for all the progress Héctor had made in his life, he was still at the mercy of the arbitrary violence of Venezuela. Together, we all wondered where Héctor was safest: In Caracas, trying to contribute to his community while at the mercy of the arbitrary violence of Venezuela, and possibly at the hands of Venezuelan police, or back under La Rutina. Héctor stands for a portrait while he and other members of Free Convict take a day job cleaning and painting a disco club. Steady jobs that pay well are scarce in Venezuela.Oscar B. CastilloOscar B. Castillo is a documentary photographer and multimedia artist. His book about the PGV, "Esos Que Saben" was published this year and is available for purchase here.  Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: worldSource: nyt5 hr. 46 min. ago

Ukrainian spies snuck into Russia ahead of the invasion and found a lot of drunk Russian troops had traded supplies for alcohol: report

In many respects, the invasion has been humiliating for the Russian military, which has suffered massive troop and equipment losses. Russian veteran border servicemen pose for a photo with a Soviet sculpture in a fountain of Gorky Park, marking the Border Guards Day, May 28, 2022, in Moscow, Russia.Getty Images Ukrainian spies slipped into Russia ahead of the invasion and saw drunk Russian troops, the Washington Post reported. The troops reportedly traded fuel and other supplies for alcohol, leaving vehicles stranded. The Post's report details how intelligence failures saw Russia's war plans in Ukraine to fall flat.  In the days leading up to Russia's invasion of Ukraine in late February, Ukrainian spies were sent into Russia to conduct surveillance on the Russian military and encountered "a lot" of drunk soldiers, according to a new Washington Post report.The Russian troops had apparently traded fuel and other supplies for alcohol. "A lot of them were drunk," a Ukrainian official who saw reports from the spies told the Post.Their observations, which also included tank formations without crews or maintainers, suggested that Russia was unprepared for war and reportedly fueled some degree of disbelief among some officials in Ukraine that Russia would actually attempt an invasion. In many ways, as has since been demonstrated, Russia wasn't ready, but it moved forward anyway.The Post's report, which relies heavily on a trove of sensitive materials gathered by Ukrainian officials and other security services, offers intricate details on Russian intelligence failures ahead of the war.Russia began laying the groundwork for an invasion years ago, according to the report, and cultivated a significant network of agents in Ukraine with the ultimate goal of toppling the government and subjugating the former Soviet republic. Prior to the invasion, it was widely believed that if Russia did launch a military incursion it would be able to defeat Ukrainian forces in a matter of days, but that's now how the conflict has played out.The Russian military failed to take Kyiv, as the Ukrainian military put up a much stiffer resistance than many expected. The fight has now lasted nearly six months, with Russia making only incremental progress as the conflict has morphed into a grinding war of attrition. In many respects, the invasion has been humiliating for the Russian military, which has suffered massive troop and equipment losses.Russia's primary spy agency, the FSB, bears much of the responsibility for the failed war plans and the overconfidence that catalyzed the Russian military's ambitious objectives, according to the Post's report. The FSB, for example, reportedly offered the Kremlin misleadingly positive assessments that suggested Ukrainians would welcome Russia with open arms."There was plenty of wishful thinking," a senior Western security official told the Post, adding that the FSB had the sense "there would be flowers strewn in their path." The FSB apparently thought that a rapid assault would quickly bring down the Ukrainian government. But, according to the Post report, FSB officers ultimately ended up retreating from Kyiv alongside Russian troops. Previous reports suggested that Putin received bad intel because his advisors are "too afraid" to give him negative assessments. Individuals who have angered or displeased the Russian leader have at times ended up dying in violent or mysterious ways, while others have landed in prison. "We believe that Putin is being misinformed by his advisors about how badly the Russian military is performing and how the Russian economy is being crippled by sanctions because his senior advisors are too afraid to tell him the truth," a US official said in late March."Putin," the official said, "didn't even know his military was using and losing conscripts in Ukraine, showing a clear breakdown in the flow of accurate information to the Russian president."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: worldSource: nyt5 hr. 46 min. ago

How to create a trans-inclusive workplace and support employees

James Barnes, known as 'The Trans Coach' on social media, spoke with Insider about the keys to an inclusive workplace, including healthcare. BI GraphicsJames Barnes, The Trans CoachDan Baker James Barnes, who's known as "The Trans Coach," trains employers on creating an inclusive workplace. Barnes works with real-estate agents and companies, including Comcast and Zendesk. He said healthcare, open dialogues, and company policies are the keys to transgender inclusion. This article is part of Talent Insider, a series containing expert advice to help small business owners tackle a range of hiring challenges. James Barnes and his wife were looking for a new home five years ago when he realized the lack of LGBTQ representation in the real-estate industry.As they toured homes and met sellers, Barnes questioned whether he should come out as transgender, if he would be discriminated against, or if he had to disclose that he'd previously changed his name. That uncertainty sparked a business idea for Barnes."I had a goal that, within the year, I'd train 10 local Realtors," he said, adding that he wanted to create an education program on best practices for working with and among trans coworkers and clients. Thirteen months later, he offered his first training, and 30 people showed up.Today, he still works with Realtors but has expanded his services into DEI training to larger companies, including Comcast and Zendesk — and has adopted the moniker of "The Trans Coach" on social media. Since initially launching his business as a side hustle in May 2021, he's taken the venture full time and booked almost $30,000 in sales. But part of that success stems from recent adversity: As of this year, 28 states have introduced anti-LGTBQ bills that would affect trans peoples' professional lives, such as where they can use the bathroom. His training workshops cover everything from empathetic language to equitable healthcare. He tells stories of his time working at a call-center job, saying, "Everybody had known me as the person I was before, I didn't know what bathroom I could use, and everything felt awkward." And they include information on inclusive benefits so employees don't have to fight as hard as he did to gain access to top surgery and other necessary healthcare options. Insider spoke with Barnes about the importance of addressing these issues, his training techniques, and how entrepreneurs can build an inclusive workplace.Comprehensive healthcare is a necessary step toward inclusionOne of the most pressing issues is the lack of healthcare diversity, including insurance-covered top or bottom surgery, necessary hormones, and post-surgery recovery time, Barnes said. He advises companies to offer healthcare plans that address each of those needs — by providing the highest level healthcare plan they can afford to offer — and discussing details with both insurers and employees. Once a robust healthcare plan is established, companies should create clear resource pages for employees to fully understand their options. Explicit answers and guidelines may ensure that employees don't have to ask any private questions or engage in conversations they aren't comfortable having publicly, he said. Mental health is another major factor in the well-being of trans people: Therapists, counselors, and other mental-health professionals should be of easy access through employee policies. But if a small business lacks the financial resources to provide healthcare plans, founders should still create transition-related support policies.For example, the company should establish an easy, step-by-step plan to adjust pronouns and change names on badges and in email signatures. Providing quick updates to professional settings would allow employees to feel safe in their identity, Barnes said. Barnes speaking at a corporate training session.courtesy of BarnesBuild workplace relationships on open dialogueThe hiring process can be isolating for many trans people because of a fear of discrimination, misunderstanding, or being forced to explain their sensitive history, Barnes said. This makes interviews and onboarding the perfect time to establish a supportive rapport.Founders and hiring managers should start every interview by sharing their names and pronouns with the interviewee.Even if you're a cis-gendered founder — which means you identify as the gender you were assigned at birth — sharing your pronouns invites supportive discussions and can help non-cisgender or nonbinary interviewees feel comfortable sharing their own identities. Community and workplace guidelines should also clearly state that misgendering, deadnaming — using a person's name from before their transition — or other forms of intolerance are against company policy. Having a written statement addressing these issues helps members of the LGBTQ community and allies feel empowered to speak up against discriminatory behavior, he said.Dan BakerInvest in inclusion year-roundIt's important that companies invest in inclusive policies for LGBTQ and other marginalized employees year-round, he said. When employers hire Barnes to speak for Pride Month, it can seem like an extracurricular activity as opposed to a genuine push for inclusion, he added. Diversity, equity, and inclusion consulting sessions outside of months of celebration and remembrance make for a much more meaningful and long-lasting conversation, Barnes said. "Awareness about the topic is not a Pride event," he said, adding that in order for diversity and inclusion to be part of the fabric of the company, founders need to invest in speakers, coaching, and improvements year-round.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsider9 hr. 46 min. ago

How the trans alpaca ranchers of Custer County, Colorado, are forging a new frontier

The Tenacious Unicorn Ranch is refuge for armed transgender anarchists. The reception in conservative Custer County hasn't been entirely welcoming. The main turnoff toward the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch in Custer County, Colorado.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderWestcliffe, Colorado — As a sea of stars, stripes, and "Make America Great Again" hats made its way up Main Street this July 4, the festivities gave the illusion of a respite from the tensions that have been building here since Independence Day two years ago. A vehicle representing the Custer County Republican Party elicited lively cheers, and was followed by a woman waving a huge flag of the Three Percenters, the far-right militia. At the rear, a column of smiling men and women marched forward with rifles strapped to their shoulders.George Gramlich, the editor of the town's far-right newspaper, the Sangre de Cristo Sentinel, stood watching the parade from the paper's office on Main Street.  "Where else would you see 100 people with guns on the street and, hey, it's not Beirut?" said Gramlich, who's in his 70s and moved here from upstate New York a little over a decade ago.Nearby, a "Trump Won" sign had been planted on the paper's lawn."It's there to annoy the liberals," Gramlich said with a smirk. He added that he doesn't personally believe the lie that the 2020 presidential election was stolen.The Sangre de Cristo Sentinel office on Main Street in Westcliffe, Colorado.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderA "Trump Won" sign outside the Sangre de Cristo Sentinel office. "It's there to annoy the liberals," said the paper's editor.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderSome 125 yards away, at Peregrine's Coffee Roasters, Penny Logue was holding court over iced chai lattes, avoiding the parade. Perched on a sun recliner in the cafe's gated garden, a rifle resting on her shoulder, Logue is wearing in a pink t-shirt with a heart containing the colors of the trans flag, along with paint-stained cargo pants and black boots. Like Gramlich, she's a relative newcomer to this rural farming community of little over 4,500 people. In March 2020, Logue was part of a collective that bought land in Westcliffe and co-founded the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch — an alpaca farm and refuge for transgender women. Before coming to Westcliffe, Logue and the others had leased a ranch in northern Colorado, close to the Wyoming border and not far from where Logue, who's 41, grew up. But they wanted to buy, and land in Custer County was relatively cheap. According to the Denver Post, Colorado's recent push for trans-inclusive policies has helped draw people from other states. Changing your name and gender on state documents is relatively easy here, and Colorado was the first state to require that certain private insurance plans cover gender-affirming care.A few months after their move, Custer County's Independence Day parade was canceled due to COVID-19. Gramlich's Sentinel organized an informal, open-carry parade of their own.Logue went on Twitter and called it a "Nazi propaganda parade." (As a trans woman whose grandparents survived the Armenian genocide, Logue said she's acutely tuned into fascism in America and eager to call it out.) At a small counter-protest, some of the Tenacious Unicorn ranchers hurled insults at the Independence Day marchers. "They took it badly," Logue says. Penny Logue moves a herd of alpacas.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderThis year, they decided to stay away, and instead hold their usual Monday meet-up at the cafe to discuss leftist politics with like-minded people.Logue doesn't regret the confrontation of 2020 and even seems to relish it. She's thinking of organizing an LGBTQ pride event in the town next year. That will "really piss people off," remarked J Stanley, who also lives at the ranch. The Sentinel's staff, however, are still furious. They say that being called "Nazis" and "fascists" helped set the tone for their relationship with the ranch. Beyond the Westcliffe town line, the Fourth of July clash inflamed hostilities toward the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch, and Logue says that probably helped set the stage for the events of the following March — an incident the ranchers call "the siege." The Wild West 2.0Across the 35 acres of the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch, 200 alpacas roam freely, nibbling on bales of hay and taking a curious interest in the other animals on the property. There are huacaya, and suri alpacas, each with different types of fleece, which the ranchers shear and sell on to suppliers. It's not hugely profitable, but it keeps the ranch afloat. The ranchers also take on the odd construction job at nearby ranches, and sell meat and eggs to locals.The ranch was created as a place where trans women could live freely and safely. Those who call it home share more than just their transness, but also a commitment to a certain worldview. They identify as anarchist leftists, have plenty of guns, and want to be left alone to operate in a collective, community-based fashion. They aren't fans of either President Joe Biden or the progressive Squad, who Logue scoffs are actually "center-right."    Penny Logue, front and center, at the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch. Behind her (from left to right): Kat Gibes, Jen Radford, and J Stanley.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderFour people live here permanently. The guests who regularly cycle through help with the animals and maintain the property in exchange for accommodation and communal meals. There are also several chickens, a couple of cats, and 8 dogs —  two of them, Gadget and Gizmo, were recently adopted from a nearby wolf sanctuary. "We're a shelter in the storm," says Logue.It's been a few hours since they returned from their meet-up at the coffee shop, and a few of the residents are relaxing in the ranch's cluttered living room before heading to their next event, the "not July 4th" party. Nonbinary, agender, and lesbian pride flags have been tacked onto the walls of the dome-shaped ranch house. A rifle is resting on an end table, beside the couch. Stanley, who's 28, is sitting at the dining table, while Logue searches for a coffee cup from a pile of unwashed dishes.They begin to tell the story of what happened here on March 6, 2021, when their little haven came under attack. "To be honest, it's all kind of a blur," says Stanley, pensively.Penny Logue, center, chats with Kat Gibes, left, and Jen Radford, right, in the ranch house.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderJ Stanley walks down the stairs of the ranch house.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderAt 3 or 4 in the morning, they say, a volunteer rancher acting as a guard found two intruders armed with rifles on the property. The intruders, wearing body armor, had come up the dirt road and tampered with the locks of the ranch's main gate, before crossing over a fence and onto the property. The guard, who spotted them some 100 feet away, threatened to shoot. The intruders ran off the property so quickly they dropped their guns in the mud, and then scampered back to retrieve them.Stanley says they did not report the incident to the police because they didn't have faith that they would do anything about it. (Indeed, there's no police record of the incident, and Custer County Sheriff's Department did not respond to Insider's request for information.) They've also declined to name the rancher who was there, so as not to jeopardize the person's health and security, they say. "We don't call the cops for anything we do, ever," says Logue. "If this was a different world where cops were trustworthy and kind to queer people, maybe we would have called the cops."The incident did reach the press, and a wave of stories appeared that profiled the gun-toting, trans alpaca farmers who had opened the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch in this conservative bastion of Colorado. Since the siege, the ranchers haven't had any intruders but the harassment has taken on a new form — much of it via Kiwi Farms.Kiwi Farms is an internet forum dedicated to doxing and trolling so-called "lolcows" a portmanteau of "lol" and "cows" which has become a niche meme used to describe people who can be "milked" for laughs. One particular thread dedicated to the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch goes on for more than 800 pages. Kiwi Farms' anonymous users post daily, bestowing offensive nicknames on the ranchers, ridiculing their appearances, and accusing them of animal abuse. They pull images from social media videos and Google Earth and, at least once, a drone was flown over the property. Comments range from petty mockery to violent fantasies. The ranchers don't keep track of the comments themselves. Friends of theirs occasionally monitor it for potential threats of violence, helping the ranchers to determine if they need to step up their security.The ranch now has 10 security cameras around the property. They carry guns, and guests provide visitors with bulletproof vests. They do a nightly patrol of the premises to check for possible intruders."We're always keeping an eye out," says Stanley."It's the Wild West 2.0," says Logue. "But this time with automatics."Logue, who has two children from previous relationships, is the matriarch of the ranch. Those living there depend on her for guidance and support. She exudes warmth, but can snap into moments of sternness — perhaps a remnant from her time serving in the military."There's a lot of people that are very welcoming here," she says. "It's just the extremist right-wingers that we're constantly in conflict with."Stanley grew up in a white, conservative military family in Texas. When she could no longer stomach her parent's opposition to Black Lives Matter protests, she said, she left home. Once a Bernie Sanders supporter, she says her ideology is now more in line with the militant politics of the Black Panthers.Eventually, she heard about the ranch through friends. Living here has given her the space to develop and voice her own views and, she says, to begin her gender transition free from the judgment of her parents.The goal here is self-sufficiency — to create their own little island here in Custer County. "Giving away your power to representatives will never end well for you," Stanley says. The conversation ends. It's time to go. Stanley walks outside and whistles to her favorite alpaca, Mocha, who got his name from his brown "teddy bear" huacaya fleece. He is an intrepid explorer, regularly wandering off by himself to explore the property's boundaries.The herd appears, with Mocha coming in behind. Behind them, Stanley double-locked the gates. Four ranchers pack into a truck and head off to the "not July 4th" party.J Stanley hugs an alpaca.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderThe 'Not July 4th' PartyWhen the ranchers arrive, a lesbian couple is adding the red, white, and blue icing to their middle-finger-shaped "fuck you" cookies. The couple, who recently moved back to Colorado after spending years living in New Zealand, has invited the members of the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch to their picturesque ranch to mark Independence Day in their own style. There's a surplus of food; jalapeno beef burgers, pretzels and dip, and a cheese board. Guests are helping themselves to beers and making themselves cosmopolitan cocktails at a minibar in a renovated shack.Inside, a blond woman with a beaming smile is sitting on a camping chair. A paper plate with cookies is balanced on one knee, and a political campaign leaflet, with her name in bold letters, rests on the other. She introduces herself as Deb Adams, the chairperson of Custer County's tourism board. She says she's running for the Board of County Commissioners. "Is everyone here registered to vote?" she asks. Stanley furrows her brow, not thrilled by the direction the night has taken them. How, she asks pointedly, would Adams differ from other politicians?Adams is running as an unaffiliated candidate, she tells them. She rejects labels.Adams settled in Colorado in 2017. Before that, she lived in Santa Barbara, California for 25 years. She supports the Second Amendment, as well as a "safe gun ownership" culture. She's unimpressed by both Biden and former President Donald Trump, saying that they are "too old" to run again. The Sentinel ("the voice of conservative Colorado") recently described her as a "really hard, hardcore lefty."The conversation gets more animated as Stanley and Logue suggest to the room that perhaps armed resistance is more effective than voting. Wasn't Malcolm X more impactful than today's career politicians? The debate peters out. Adams seems unfazed and continues to smile and socialize. (She later says she felt as though their reaction had been favorable.) The Tenacious Unicorn ranchers step away and confer about where to go next. Stanley's mood has visibly soured, and she whispers to Logue that it's time to go home, rather than to the flag-burning party they'd originally planned to hit next. "Not to worry, we can do that any day of the week," Logue says, while packing up her stuff.As they drive their Ford Explorer back to the ranch, Stanley continues to lay out her disagreements with Logue."The system isn't working," she says, in part because politicians aren't made to say where they really stand on things. She says she doesn't trust the government to deal with the issues that worry her most — climate collapse, "trans genocide," a possible civil war, protecting people like her.J Stanley, standing outside the ranch house, pets two dogs.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderAlpacas roam freely across the 35 acres of the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderAll this leads back to the ranch, and the need for them to become self-sufficient.Logue nods her head. "The main way to undermine the state is to become self-sufficient," she says.'It's 1950s America here'If the events of July 4 left the members of the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch feeling frustrated, Gramlich, the Sangre de Cristo Sentinel's editor, was jubilant. The turnout at the parade was bigger than it had been in years, and Gramlich was thrilled.Gramlich is standing in the Sentinel's Main Street office, which wouldn't be out of place in a Spaghetti Western movie if it wasn't for the lifesize cutout of former President Donald Trump that dominates the room. In one dusty nook, there's a sort of memorial-cum-minibar, where antique weapons from the Vietnam War are laid out beside a half-empty bottles of whiskey. Among the plaques on the wall, one reads: "Warning: Does not play well with liberals."Rifles are seemingly everywhere in this town, and one sits atop one of the room's wooden tables. When Gramlich turns, his handgun, nestled in a hostler, is in clear view."We are unabashedly and totally conservatives," Gramlich says. "Hyperpartisan partisans." Conservatism runs deep in Custer County, and often comes with a Christian and libertarian bent. Gramlich says the prospect of existing in what felt like a bygone era was part of what drew him to the area 12 years ago. "It's 1950s America here," he remarks. "It's the old America. There are real cowboys here."Before all this, Gramlich had been a cattle rancher in upstate New York, but he became fed up with Democrats "ruining" the state with liberal politics. He and his wife arrived in Colorado as "basically political and Second Amendment refugees," he said in a podcast interview. On Main Street in Westcliffe, various buildings are reminiscent of the town's gold mining era.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderCuster County has voted Republican in every presidential election for the last 58 years, and has only voted for a Democratic governor once — Richard Lamm in 1982. The county also has a penchant for electing members of Congress who are keen to take the fight to Washington. Representative Lauren Boebert, who has parroted QAnon conspiracy theories and reportedly sought permission to carry her Glock pistol on Capitol grounds, won this district with 76% of the vote.In April, she suggested that Americans in the LGBTQ+ community should be 21 before they can make "life-altering decisions about their sexuality and identity." And since then, she has implied that monkeypox is a conspiracy designed to help Democrats win the midterm, Venezuelans eat dogs' because they don't have guns, and has blamed same-sex marriage for "undermining masculinity." Boebert, who's given positive coverage by the Sentinel, has been described by the publication as a "purveyor of the Constitution" and an "overnight sensation."But Gramlich was disappointed that his new neighbors seemed to be dispirited and jaded about politics. Shortly after President Barack Obama's second election victory in 2012, Gramlich held talks with members of the local Tea Party and the decision was made to set up a local, right-wing newspaper. For a newspaper representing a rural farming community, there's a significant amount of commentary on national political issues in the pages of the Sentinel. Recent editions feature articles criticizing "Soros-aligned" politicians, gun control laws, and gender reassignment procedures for teens. The Tenacious Unicorn Ranch is a frequent target. After a story in High County News portrayed the ranchers as queer trailblazers, Gramlich published an annotated version of the article. In it, he accused the ranchers of "left-wing fascism" and urged readers to pray for their "lost, lost souls.'' "Who are the intolerant ones? Who is doing the hating? They use the classic progressive vehicle, 'accuse your opponents of doing exactly what you are doing' to attack us," he wrote. A vision for the futureLogue doesn't engage much with the Sentinel, which she sees as peddling hate. "We're out here talking about building communities," she said. Logue's hope is that self-sustaining, queer-inclusive communities like the Tenacious Unicorn Ranch will rise up around the nation. "Our vision is having one of these ranches in every state, so that we can network with each other and make it possible for people with limited funds to get to them," she said. An alpaca shows its teeth on the grounds of the ranch. The creatures' teeth can grow quite long and typically require trimming for the animal to feed efficiently.Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa for InsiderThey're in talks with some people in Texas that want to start one, Logue says, and there is a tentative plan for another in Oregon.And right now, they're helping a group of indigenous queer people find land to buy in Arizona. Once they find an affordable property, the ranchers intend to co-sign on it, provide a herd of alpaca, and help them develop a detailed plan for success. Part of that plan, Logue said, outlines how to avoid being targeted by right-wing agitators. "Because I don't see a future where we're not dealing with that kind of thing constantly," she said.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsider9 hr. 46 min. ago

IRS expansion means Florida should implement four key ways to fight back

IRS adding 87,000 new agents means Florida should implement four key ways to defend taxpayers and help them fight back against big-government insanity......»»

Category: topSource: foxnews9 hr. 46 min. ago

Stocks Extend Losses, Yields Spike After "Recession" Comments From Fed"s Barkin

Stocks Extend Losses, Yields Spike After "Recession" Comments From Fed's Barkin Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond President Thomas Barkin says “getting inflation under control is going to be necessary to set up what we have the potential to do in the economy.” Barkin warned that "The Fed must curb inflation even if this causes a recession," adding that The Fed "needs to raise rates into restrictive territory." “I’ve convinced myself that not getting inflation under control is inconsistent with a thriving economy” Barkin further added that “I’ve been supportive of front-loading." The Richmond Fed president's comments echoe'd ECB's Schnabel's words of warning that "even if we entered a recession, it’s quite unlikely that inflationary pressures will abate by themselves," Schnabel said. "The growth slowdown is then probably not sufficient to dampen inflation." It appears the world's central bankers are rapidly realizing that a recession is needed to tamp down inflation... and in fact even that may not do the trick - this is a supply issue, not a demand issue. Translation: we need a depression to 'fight' Putin! This prompted further weakness in stocks with Nasdaq down 2%... And yields spiking higher with 10Y inching closer to 3.00%... ...erasing all the price gains from the ECB/US-weak-data bond rally. Is the scene being set for Powell to steal the jam out of the 'Fed Pivot' bulls' donut next week in J-Hole? Tyler Durden Fri, 08/19/2022 - 11:19.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nyt9 hr. 59 min. ago

Jackson Hole: More Things To Worry About

Jackson Hole: More Things To Worry About By Simon White, Bloomberg Markets Live reporter and commentator Anticipation that Powell’s Jackson Hole keynote will showcase his inflation-fighting resolve should depress equities in coming days. However, it’s hard to envision how he can successfully cause rates to reprice, and the speech will likely fall short of expectations. It’s an article of faith among most analysts that inflation is too high and that it requires a significant tightening in financial conditions to bring it back to target. Furthermore, the 2023 Fed dots are 51bps higher than Jan. 24 implied Fed fund futures. With equities still in a relatively buoyant frame of mind Powell seems to have a free shot at establishing his hawkish credentials. There’s a good chance the Fed chief will craft a speech that signals that he is focused almost solely on inflation, the risk of the wage-price spiral, and the costs of inflation expectations getting out of hand (as Bloomberg economist Yelena Shulyatyeva has suggested). He should try to convince markets that these risks far exceed the costs of bumpy landing. However: What more can he say that hasn’t already been said? In the last press conference, Powell implied that the headline inflation measure was unusually important because of its role in potentially de-anchoring inflation expectations. He also said “nothing works in the economy without price stability” and “we don’t see it (the fight against inflation) as a trade-off with the employment mandate”. This language would need to be significantly sharpened or strong research findings would need to be produced to illustrate that the trade-off should be put on hold for there to be an impact on the longer-dated Fed expectations Will markets be able to believe that the Fed will go on hiking once a sizable number of people are put out of work, and the noise of the mid-term elections is behind us? There are precedents for the Fed dots sharply being disconnected from market pricing, and for the markets being right. For instance, the market was pricing 1.75% for Jan-2020 fed funds on June 13, 2017, versus the median dot released on June 14 which had Fed funds at 2.9% at end 2019, and the gap widened into September. It turned out that the market was right: effective fed funds ended 2019 at 1.55% Granted, he could choose to focus on the need for tighter financial conditions or choose to flag a short-term front-loading of hikes at a faster pace than the market expects. While both are reasonable for equity markets to worry about, there are reasons to be skeptical that either course of action will be taken. Simpler than trying to deal with expectations further out would be to flag an imminent front-loading of hikes at a faster pace than the market expects: Presumably, the very strong labor market and high headline inflation can be used as justification. Powell could easily communicate with the board ahead of time to get buy-in, and Bernanke probably did in 2012 to flag September QE3. However, this is not the norm for Jackson Hole, which tends to deal with issues at a longer-time horizon. Furthermore, it’s not short-term pricing that’s the problem. The Jan-23 Fed Fund Futures are already 11bps north of the dots. Another method would be talk about the need to tighten financial conditions in the short term, which would imply that longer-term rates are too low, and that the Fed would not respond to equity weakness: However, in Powell’s most recent press conference and the minutes, all references to financial conditions indicate that the Fed is happy with the tightening so far, and there doesn’t seem to be recognition that these conditions are too loose. Indeed, the line on page 10 of the minutes which describes “a notable tightening of financial conditions” is quite typical of how they are described on all 9 occasions. That is, Fed might want conditions to tighten over time, but there seems no urgency in recent communications. * * * One final point here, from ZH, is that contrary to the Fed's view that financial conditions have tightened "notably", just the opposite has in fact occurred because as Goldman showed recently, the 20+ day period since the July FOMC has seen one of the biggest easings of financial conditions (driven by the surge in markets) on record. Tyler Durden Fri, 08/19/2022 - 08:15.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedge13 hr. 2 min. ago

Russian intelligence knew that Ukrainians would not welcome Russia, but still told the Kremlin they would, report says

Russia expected a quick victory in Ukraine. But it faced unexpected Ukrainian resistance and has since had to focus on a smaller part of the country. Russian President Vladimir Putin during a military parade n Moscow.Mikhail Metzel, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP Russia's intel agency had evidence Ukrainians would fight a Russian invasion but told the Kremlin otherwise. That's according to information obtained by The Washington Post. One Western official said intel officials gave the Kremlin "the sense that there would be flowers strewn in their path." Russian officials had intelligence that Ukrainians would not welcome invasion by Russia, but intelligence officials still told the Kremlin that they would, The Washington Post reported.Polls conducted for Russia's security service, the FSB, before the February 24 invasion showed that Ukrainians would oppose a Russia invasion and that a large proportion of Ukrainians would be willing to fight, The Post reported.But it is not clear if the FSB gave the results to the Kremlin, The Post said.Ukrainian and Western officials told The Post that the FSB instead repeatedly gave the Kremlin reports saying that Ukrainians would welcome the takeover and a new, Russia-supporting government.The polls were done by Research & Branding, a firm that The Post said has "close ties" with the FSB.One poll in January, the month before the invasion, asked: "Are you ready to defend Ukraine in the event of such a necessity?" Forty-eight percent of respondents said yes, The Post said. The poll was first obtained by Ukrainian intelligence, and then obtained by The Post.Multiple reports say that Russia expected to seize Ukraine quickly, and that a major factor in Russia's failure to do so was the unexpectedly high level of resistance by Ukrainians.It is not fully clear why the FSB did not communicate what it knew to Russia's leaders.Officials told The Post that the FSB would have wanted to please the Kremlin, and that people who were giving the FSB information may have had their own political or financial reasons for wanting Russia to take down Ukraine's government.The head of the UK's intelligence agency gave a similar assessment in March.Jeremy Fleming, the director of GCHQ, said: "We believe Putin's advisors are afraid to tell him the truth, what's going on and the extent of these misjudgments must be crystal clear to the regime."A senior Western military official told The Post that the FSB's failure to capture and communicate the reality of Ukraine's feelings fed into the missteps by Russia's military in trying to take Ukraine."There was plenty of wishful thinking in the GRU and the military, but it started with the FSB," he said."The sense that there would be flowers strewn in their path — that was an FSB exercise."Western intelligence also saw that Russia had false confidence that it would be welcomed in Ukraine, the BBC reported. One Western intelligence officer told the broadcaster: "They genuinely believed there would be flags out to welcome them."The Post said the director of Research & Branding did not respond to its questions.Ukraine, which borders Russia, was once part of the Soviet Union, and Russia has repeatedly sought to portray it as Russian territory, despite its fighting for and gaining independence in 1991.Putin has baselessly tried to portray Ukraine as a country that has never been fully independent as part of his justification for the invasion, and has claimed Ukraine as Russian territory.He said in February: "Let me emphasize once again that Ukraine for us is not just a neighboring country. It is an integral part of our own history, culture, spiritual space."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsider14 hr. 2 min. ago

Citadel — Ken Griffin"s financial empire with one of the most lucrative internships on Wall Street — should distribute job offers next week. Three interns provided the inside track for a summer program that accepts less than 1% of applicants.

Interns at Ken Griffin's Citadel pack their days with rotations, they hob-nob with senior leadership, and sharpen their investment skills. Three interns described their experience at the firm, and what surprised them most. Hi. Aaron Weinman here. Did you do an internship? Mine comprised coffee runs, photocopying briefs, and sticking Post-it notes on a massive sheet of paper that looked like a calendar.What were on the Post-it notes, you ask? Usually terribly hand-written details on where an advertisement would go in the next magazine (remember those things?) or a tiny block for my awful story about some self-indulgent experience.Thankfully, internships have changed. Ken Griffin's Citadel, for example, offers a lucrative summer program for budding Wall Streeters keen to make a buck and schmooze with senior figures in financial markets.Let's take a look inside the Citadel experience.And don't forget, there's our Banker of the Week!If this was forwarded to you, sign up here. Download Insider's app here.Ken Griffin shares his career advice with a group of 150 interns.Citadel1. Citadel's elite summer internship accepts less than 1% of applicants. And next week, the firm should be making job offers to interns looking to build their careers on Wall Street. Should they accept, these interns will join the hedge fund Citadel or the market maker Citadel Securities next summer on a full-time basis, and pocket an average base salary of $150,000.While the program starts with an offsite "Shark Tank"-style session in the plush resorts of South Florida, the summer internship is an arduous, roughly three-month effort. Interns pack their days (and sometimes nights) with rotations, and they make the most of opportunities to network with senior leadership, all while honing their investment and technical skills.Seasoned executives at the hedge fund said Citadel prizes curious candidates who are keen to collaborate, while Griffin's advice to interns was to hustle in your 20s. Speaking at a fireside chat, the Citadel founder also suggested being aggressive when asking for a promotion.Insider's Alyson Velati's latest story goes inside the sought-after internship.Meanwhile, here's how much top market makers — like Citadel Securities and Jump Trading — are paying their traders, engineers, and researchers, among others.In other news:Better CEO Vishal GargBetter2. Better — the mortgage fintech that drew widespread scorn for massive layoffs via Zoom last year — has tapped data company Palantir to enhance its software. Chief Executive Vishal Garg said the software will help lenders curate more data to originate loans.3. Whoever succeeds Kewsong Lee as Carlyle's chief executive must fix the rifts throughout the investment firm, according to this account from Bloomberg. The drama at Carlyle exposed fault lines between the old guard and new.4. A Tech CEO just resigned to fight what he calls "false accusations" of assault. Dan Price, who gained fame after paying all employees at least $70,000, faces sexual assault and violence allegations from multiple women. As per the New York Times, Price allegedly used social media to launder his public persona and avoid reproach.5. Walmart should be "scrambling" now that Amazon has made its play for primary-care company One Medical, according to analysts. Here are three strategies the retailer can use to edge out Amazon in the healthcare space.6. Credit Suisse, JPMorgan, and Morgan Stanley are creating units to lend money directly to over-leveraged companies, Bloomberg reported. The teams will provide debt for leveraged buyouts and compete with investment firms like Blackstone and Ares, which are able to write billion-dollar checks for acquisitions, and bypass banks in the traditional syndication process.7. Investor Ronald Perelman — once dubbed a "latter-day Midas," by Institutional Investor magazine — has made more money than most people could spend in a lifetime. But one of his prizes — cosmetics giant Revlon — is now in bankruptcy and his possessions are fading away, Town & Country wrote in this feature.8. The Right Stuff, a conservative dating app, raised $1.5 million in capital. Take a look at the pitch deck that the company — launched by three former staffers for President Donald Trump — used to woo Peter Thiel.9. "If you f–k up in the biggest ways, you can be redeemed." Silicon Valley just handed $350 million to Adam Neumann, the guy who crashed WeWork and just returned to the billionaires list, for an initiative that looks a lot like his failed "WeLive" effort.Mia Alexander, VP, customer success, DaveDave10. And here's our Friday Banker of the Week. Meet Mia Alexander, a vice president of customer success at the neobank Dave. While Dave is known for its cash advances, Alexander is focused on advancing Dave's reach to under-represented communities that lack greater access to financial services.Alexander not only champions minority communities' access to more banking needs, but she's working on Dave's "Side Hustle" program that seeks second, or sometimes third jobs for its customers. Check out the full story here.Done deals:Investing platform eToro has acquired Gatsby, an options trading platform. eToro, founded in 2007, has more than 28 million users who can buy, hold, and sell assets.Penn Entertainment will acquire the remaining shares of Barstool Sports that it does not already own for $387 million. This will give the casino operator full control of the sports and pop-culture company.Curated by Aaron Weinman in New York. Tips? Email aweinman@insider.com or tweet @aaronw11. Edited by Hallam Bullock (tweet @hallam_bullock) in London.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsider14 hr. 2 min. ago

Oracle insiders explain how it lost the marketing cloud war to Salesforce

Former Oracle employees describe how the cloud giant was beat by rivals like Salesforce and Adobe and ultimately laid off scores of workers. Good Friday morning! Jordan Parker Erb here, reporting to you from the Big Sky state. I've had a grand ole time in Montana, in part because I'm seeing my family and pets, but also because I got to drive around in a Tesla for the first time this week — but more on that in a bit.Before we talk Tesla, Oracle employees dished on how the company lost the marketing cloud war to Salesforce.Now, let's get to it. If this was forwarded to you, sign up here. Download Insider's app here.Justin Sullivan/Getty Images1. Inside Oracle's $4 billion fumble. Since 2014, the cloud giant spent billions of dollars creating an ad and marketing products behemoth — but failed to meet its goals, and in August, the company laid off scores of people. Former employees gave us an inside look at what went wrong. The goal was to acquire leading marketing and adtech startups to build Oracle Marketing Cloud, and about a year later, Oracle Data Cloud, which would later become Oracle Advertising. But former employees said under Rob Tarkoff, the Oracle executive VP who was appointed to lead the two businesses, the company failed to invest in Marketing Cloud, which caused Oracle to lose ground to Salesforce's competing product. Oracle Advertising suffered from a lack of investment too, sources said. Employees also said they were demoralized by leadership that dismissed their concerns.How Oracle lost the marketing cloud war to Salesforce.In other news:Gravity Payments2. A Tech CEO, who gained fame after paying all employees at least $70,000, just resigned to fight what he calls "false accusations" of assault. Dan Price faces sexual assault and violence allegations from multiple women, including his ex-wife. As per the New York Times, Price allegedly used social media to launder his public persona and avoid reproach.3. From El Salvador to South Africa, crypto evangelists are trying to persuade the world's poor to use bitcoin. While bitcoin is still a volatile currency, its defenders argue it can help build savings and beat inflation — but critics worry they're doing more harm than good.4. Elon Musk told Republicans the party should welcome immigrants. While at a GOP retreat, the Tesla CEO said the party should show more compassion and stay "out of people's bedrooms," Axios first reported. More on Musk's musings.5. Scores of Facebook contractors just lost their work with the company. Workers told Insider they found out about the layoffs through a video call with anonymous representatives, who said an "algorithm" chose roughly 60 random people to cut. Here's what we know so far.6. Google will soon take a big swipe at webpages it deems "unhelpful." Next week, the company will release an update to its search engine that deranks pages its systems believe aren't offering users high-quality information. Google's in-house Search expert shares tips on how to survive as the "helpful content" update kicks in.7. Social media companies are preparing for the 2022 midterm elections. Earlier this week, Facebook announced it'd be bringing back its weeklong ban on political ads leading up to the elections, and TikTok rolled out a new "Election Center." Everything else TikTok is doing to fight misinformation.8. A leaked Salesforce org chart shows the 13 most important execs reporting to co-CEOs Marc Benioff and Bret Taylor. Following a reorganization at the company, Taylor oversees 11 top executives, while Benioff only oversees two. Plus, Brian Millham was elevated to chief operating officer. Read our full scoop on the shakeup.Odds and ends:I got to drive a Tesla Model 3 for the first time this week — and loved it.Jordan Erb/Insider9. I drove a Tesla for the first time this week — and I was shocked by how much I enjoyed the zippy little EV. Through the car-sharing app Turo, I rented a brand-new Tesla Model 3, and drove it around Montana. Here's everything that surprised me about driving a Tesla.10. Dodge just unveiled its electric muscle car concept. After announcing it'd be sunsetting its gas-powered Charger and Challenger models, Dodge gave us a glimpse of a concept EV with an exhaust system that mimics the roar of a 797-horsepower Hellcat. Take a look at the Charger Daytona SRT.The latest people moves in tech:Mozilla has hired Steve Teixeira as its new chief product officer of core products.Gopuff operations chief, Amazon veteran Tim Collins, departed the company. Amazon has hired Claire Peters, a senior executive from the Australian grocer Woolworths, as VP of Fresh.LinkedIn's global head of community and creators, Andrei Santalo, is leaving 15 months after joining the company.Keep updated with the latest tech news throughout your day by checking out The Refresh from Insider, a dynamic audio news brief from the Insider newsroom. Listen here.Curated by Jordan Parker Erb in New York. (Feedback or tips? Email jerb@insider.com or tweet @jordanparkererb.) Edited by Hallam Bullock (tweet @hallam_bullock) in London.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsider14 hr. 46 min. ago

Dershowitz joins fight to ‘save’ Maimonides hospital in Brooklyn

Real estate mogul Dovid Lichtenstein is also among the notables speaking at a Save Maimonides town hall next week.....»»

Category: blogSource: crainsnewyorkAug 18th, 2022

BD"s (BDX) Latest Collaboration to Boost Patient Outcome

BD's (BDX) tie-up with Accelerate Diagnostics is expected to strengthen the fight to combat the global threat of antimicrobial resistance, thereby boosting patient care. Becton, Dickinson and Company BDX, popularly known as BD, recently announced a worldwide commercial collaboration agreement with Accelerate Diagnostics, Inc. Per the agreement terms, BD will offer Accelerate Diagnostics’ rapid testing solution for antibiotic resistance and susceptibility, offering results in a few hours. This is an improvement over some of the traditional laboratory methods, which may take one to two days to provide results.It is worth mentioning that the recent tie-up enables BD to market and sell the Accelerate Pheno system and Accelerate Arc module and associated test kits via its global sales network in regions where the products have regulatory approval or registration. The collaboration also aims to advance the shared goal of both players to address the global threat of antimicrobial resistance.The latest partnership is expected to complement BD's existing Clinical Microbiology portfolio, thereby solidifying its foothold in the global Integrated Diagnostic Solutions (IDS) business. Notably, the IDS business is a part of the broader Life Sciences arm.Rationale Behind the Tie UpPer BD’s management, rapid testing can aid in the faster determination of whether an antibiotic should be used for treatment, and, if so, which one. Management believes that this collaboration will enable it to help clinicians to quickly, efficiently and effectively treat patients. This, in turn, may lead to slowing the spread of antimicrobial resistance and reduction in healthcare costs.Accelerate Diagnostics’ management feels that BD's large installed customer base of clinical microbiology systems will likely significantly increase its global commercial reach and provide ways to increase its market penetration with Pheno and Arc to reach more clinicians and patients.Industry ProspectsPer a report by MarketsandMarkets, the global molecular diagnostics market is anticipated to reach $30.2 billion by 2027 from $23.2 billion in 2022 at a CAGR of 5.4%. Factors like the emergence of new viruses, technological advancements in molecular diagnostics and the growing awareness of early disease diagnosis are likely to drive the market.Given the market potential, the latest collaboration is expected to significantly strengthen BD’s business worldwide.Recent Developments in Life Sciences ArmThis month, BD entered into a collaboration with Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings LH or LabCorp. The tie-up is aimed at creating a framework to develop, manufacture, market and commercialize flow cytometry-based companion diagnostics intended to match patients best available treatments for cancer and other diseases.Also, in August, BD reported its third-quarter fiscal 2022 results, wherein the company’s Biosciences business unit continued to record strong demand for reagents. This was driven by BD’s antibody and dye strategy and the continued adoption of its e-commerce platform.  Strong instrument growth was driven by recent product launches and strategic procurement of critical components that enabled higher instrument placements.Last month, BD and CerTest Biotec announced their newly developed molecular polymerase chain reaction test for the monkeypox virus had been made commercially available outside of the United States for use in research applications by laboratories. BD announced a partnership with CerTest with the aim of developing a molecular diagnostic test for the monkeypox virus in June.Price PerformanceThe BD stock has gained 6.6% over the past year against the industry’s 6.3% fall and the S&P 500's 4.1% decline.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchZacks Rank & Key PicksCurrently, BD carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).A couple of better-ranked stocks in the broader medical space are AMN Healthcare Services, Inc. AMN and Patterson Companies, Inc. PDCO.AMN Healthcare, sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) at present, has an estimated long-term growth rate of 3.2%. AMN’s earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in all the trailing four quarters, the average beat being 15.7%.You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.AMN Healthcare has gained 1.2% against the industry’s 28.8% fall in the past year.Patterson Companies, carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at present, has an estimated long-term growth rate of 7.9%. PDCO’s earnings surpassed estimates in all the trailing four quarters, the average beat being 16.5%.Patterson Companies has gained 0.5% against the industry’s 6.3% fall over the past year. Free: Top Stocks for the $30 Trillion Metaverse Boom The metaverse is a quantum leap for the internet as we currently know it - and it will make some investors rich. Just like the internet, the metaverse is expected to transform how we live, work and play. Zacks has put together a new special report to help readers like you target big profits. The Metaverse - What is it? And How to Profit with These 5 Pioneering Stocks reveals specific stocks set to skyrocket as this emerging technology develops and expands.Download Zacks’ Metaverse Report now >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings (LH): Free Stock Analysis Report Becton, Dickinson and Company (BDX): Free Stock Analysis Report Patterson Companies, Inc. (PDCO): Free Stock Analysis Report AMN Healthcare Services Inc (AMN): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksAug 18th, 2022

5 Most-Loved Dividend ETFs of This Year

Dividend-focused ETFs have been garnering huge investor interest in a rising rate environment. Dividend investing is in vogue this year amid huge volatility and uncertainty. This is especially true as these are major sources of consistent income for investors in any type of market though they do not offer dramatic price appreciation. These stocks tend to outperform in volatile markets and can reduce the volatility of a portfolio.As such, dividend-focused ETFs have been garnering huge investor interest, led by Schwab U.S. Dividend Equity ETF SCHD, which pulled in $8.9 billion in capital. This was followed by inflows of $6.4 billion for Vanguard High Dividend Yield ETF VYM, $4.9 billion for iShares Core High Dividend ETF HDV, $2.9 billion for iShares Core Dividend Growth ETF DGRO and $2.2 billion for iShares Select Dividend ETF DVY.The dividend-focused products offer safety through payouts and stability in the form of mature companies that are less volatile amid large swings in stock prices. This is because the companies that pay out dividends generally act as a hedge against economic uncertainty and provide downside protection by offering outsized payouts or sizable yields on a regular basis.Additionally, dividend-paying stocks are gaining appeal in a rising rate environment, which is quite negative for bonds. The Fed hiked interest rates for the fourth consecutive time this year, taking the benchmark rate in the range of 2.25% and 2.5% to fight inflation. Lingering Russia-Ukraine tensions, China slowdown and recession fears added to the chaos, thereby making dividend investing an excellent choice (read: Inflation Cools But Food Prices Up Since 1979: ETFs in Focus).Let’s delve deeper into the above-mentioned ETFs:Schwab U.S. Dividend Equity ETF (SCHD)Schwab U.S. Dividend Equity ETF offers exposure to 104 high-dividend yielding U.S. companies that have a record of consistent dividend payments supported by fundamental strength based on financial ratios and ample liquidity. This can be easily done by tracking the Dow Jones U.S. Dividend 100 Index. Schwab U.S. Dividend Equity ETF is well spread across components, with none holding more than 4.4% of the assets. It charges 6 bps in annual fees and trades in a solid volume of about 3 million shares a day.Schwab U.S. Dividend Equity ETF has AUM of $39 billion and a Zacks ETF Rank #3 (Hold) with a Medium risk outlook.Vanguard High Dividend Yield ETF (VYM)Vanguard High Dividend Yield ETF provides exposure to the high-yielding dividend stocks by tracking the FTSE High Dividend Yield Index. Holding 443 securities, the product is pretty well spread out across components as each holds no more than 3.3% of the assets (read: 5 ETFs Set to Bloom as Economy Recovers All Jobs).Vanguard High Dividend Yield ETF has amassed $48.3 billion in its asset base while trading in volumes of 2 million shares a day on average. The expense ratio is 0.06%. VYM has a Zacks ETF Rank #1 (Strong Buy) with a Medium risk outlook.iShares Core High Dividend ETF (HDV)iShares Core High Dividend ETF offers exposure to 75 high-quality and high-dividend stocks by tracking the Morningstar Dividend Yield Focus Index. It is slightly concentrated on the top firms, with each making up no more than a 7.2% share.iShares Core High Dividend ETF has AUM of $12.6 billion and trades in a solid volume of around 1.3 million shares a day. It charges 8 bps in fees per year and has a Zacks ETF Rank #3 with a Medium risk outlook.iShares Core Dividend Growth ETF (DGRO)iShares Core Dividend Growth ETF provides exposure to companies having a history of sustained dividend growth by tracking the Morningstar US Dividend Growth Index. It holds 414 stocks in its basket, with each accounting for less than a 3.3% share (read: Growth ETFs Shining to Start Second Half: Here's Why?).iShares Core Dividend Growth ETF has AUM of $24.7 billion and trades in solid volumes of about 1.6 million shares. It charges 8 bps in fees per year and has a Zacks ETF Rank #1 with a Medium risk outlook.iShares Select Dividend ETF (DVY)iShares Select Dividend ETF provides exposure to the high dividend-paying U.S. equities with a five-year history of dividend growth. It follows the Dow Jones U.S. Select Dividend Index and holds 99 securities in its basket, with each accounting for less than 2.2% of assets.iShares Select Dividend ETF has AUM of $22.7 billion and an average daily volume of around 897,000 shares. It charges 38 bps in fees per year from investors and has a Zacks ETF Rank #2 with a Medium risk outlook. Want key ETF info delivered straight to your inbox? Zacks’ free Fund Newsletter will brief you on top news and analysis, as well as top-performing ETFs, each week.Get it free >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report iShares Select Dividend ETF (DVY): ETF Research Reports iShares Core High Dividend ETF (HDV): ETF Research Reports Vanguard High Dividend Yield ETF (VYM): ETF Research Reports iShares Core Dividend Growth ETF (DGRO): ETF Research Reports Schwab U.S. Dividend Equity ETF (SCHD): ETF Research Reports To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksAug 18th, 2022

The tech CEO who gained fame after paying all employees at least $70K has just resigned to fight what he calls "false accusations" of assault

Seattle-based Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price announced his resignation on Wednesday. New reports show he's facing mounting sexual assault allegations. Gravity Payments Dan Price, the tech CEO who rose to fame for paying employees a $70K minimum salary, resigned Wednesday.  He faces sexual assault and violence allegations from multiple women, detailed in a report in the New York Times.  Price says the allegations are false and he is resigning to "focus full time" on fighting them.  Dan Price, the Seattle-based tech CEO once lauded a hero for raising his employees' pay, announced he resigned from his post on Wednesday to "fight false allegations." Price faces a slew of sexual assault allegations from many women, including his ex-wife, alleging that he used social media to launder his public persona and avoid reproach, the New York Times reports. Price is the cofounder and now-former CEO of Seattle-based Gravity Payments, a credit card processing company. He first rose to prominence in 2015 when he announced he would slash his salary by $1 million and raise all of his employees' pay to a minimum of $70,000 per year. Price's announcement earned him fans on social media, where he has more than 700,000 followers, and in legacy media. He has appeared on shows like The Daily Show and The Kelly Clarkson Show, as well as on various news programs and sites, including Insider. The Times reports that Price's internet fame helped enable a pattern of abuse involving alleged rape and choking of multiple women. Dan Price could not be immediately reached for comment by Insider, but on Wednesday night, he issued a statement declaring his resignation, saying he needs to "focus full time on fighting false accusations made against me." In the statement posted to Twitter, he told his followers, "I'm not going anywhere."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytAug 18th, 2022

Canadian inflation expected to take longer than expected to return to target

Canada's central bank, the Bank of Canada, has raised its interest rates by 225 basis points (2.25%) in an effort to fight inflation in the country......»»

Category: topSource: foxnewsAug 18th, 2022