Archive for 2015

The Most Common Job in 29 States to Nearly Vanish in 10 Years; Know What That Job Is?

Courtesy of Mish.

The NPR claims the most common job in 29 of 50 US states is truck driving. This seems a bit overboard, and depends on how jobs are categorized, but here is the chart.

The above chart from NPR “Planet Money” report that says …

We used data from the Census Bureau, which has two catch-all categories: “managers not elsewhere classified” and “salespersons not elsewhere classified.” Because those categories are broad and vague to the point of meaninglessness, we excluded them from our map.

Self-Driving Trucks Will Hit Us Like Ton of Bricks

Please consider Self-Driving Trucks Are Going to Hit Us Like a Human-Driven Truck.

It should be clear at a glance just how dependent the American economy is on truck drivers. According to the American Trucker Association, there are 3.5 million professional truck drivers in the US, and an additional 5.2 million people employed within the truck-driving industry who don’t drive the trucks. That’s 8.7 million trucking-related jobs.

One further important detail to consider is that truck drivers are well-paid. They provide a middle class income of about $40,000 per year. That’s a higher income than just about half (46%) of all tax filers, including those of married households. They are also greatly comprised by those without college educations. Truck driving is just about the last job in the country to provide a solid middle class salary without requiring a post-secondary degree. Truckers are essentially the last remnant of an increasingly impoverished population once gainfully employed in manufacturing before those middle income jobs were mostly all shipped overseas.

Short-Term Job Outlook of the American Trucker

The trucking industry expects to see 21% more truck driving jobs by 2020. They also expect to see an increasing shortfall in drivers, with over 100,000 jobs open and unable to find drivers to fill them. Higher demand than supply of truckers also points to higher pay, so for at least the next five years, the future is looking great for truck drivers. The only thing that could put a damper on this would be if the demand for truck drivers were to say… drive off a sharp cliff.

That cliff is the self-driving truck. So when will the process end? When will self-driving cars conquer our roads?

Adoption Timeline




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Is This Complacency, Idiocy, Or Both?

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Submitted by Mark St.Cyr,

If one listens to the financial media mavens give their detailed analysis of late, you would have thought the The Onion™ decided to try its hand at TV and radio.

Since last Friday as they anticipated the most recent “jobs” report with bated breath to be announced, into this week that just ended. I have been left slack-jawed more times resembling the cartoon characters I grew with up as a kid. However, at least back then the cartoons were trying to be funny. Today, what is being touted as “serious insightful analysis” is so much more comedic – its tragic.

As I awaited this months version of the report. I had playing in the background one of the financial shows that were parsing, and mincing the usual data points. When suddenly I heard a few statements that made me do the double-take of “wait…what?”

As usual the schpiel is basically the same or formulaic on all of these program types. The host plays the sounding board as the guest plays “the seer of all that’s unseen by us mere mortal schlubs.” On this day in particular; replace “mortal” with “idiot” and you are closer to the truth of how you, or I, are looked upon by these masses of the so-called “smart crowd” perusing Wall Street today.

And just to clarify; the word “idiot” is in quotes not in some air quote manner. Rather: that is the exact word used to describe people like myself (and maybe even you) that question their insight. So if you’re reading this – now you know where you may stand within Wall Street’s loving and caring mind. (I know it’s satire) For question their glowing analysis of dog crap? And it’ll be your nose they’ll attempt to rub in it. Elitist insight at its best.

One of the reasons given why this guest could tell “the economy was doing much better than perceived” was: As he traveled about the country to places like the West Coast, and a few others. (The list was what anyone with half-a-brain would understand are at the epicenter of a pick your bubble flavor expansion) From his observation “These places are doing very well!”

As I listened to the list of places that were ticked off where they had visited…
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Bond Trading Revenues Are Plunging On Wall Street, And Why It Is Going To Get Worse

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Among the renewed Greek drama, many missed a key development in the past week, namely Jefferies Q2 earnings, and particularly the company’s fixed income revenue: traditionally a harbinger of profitability for Wall Street’s biggest source of profit (or at least biggest source of profit in the Old Normal). And while not as abysmal as the 56% collapse in the first quarter, in the three months ended May 31 what has traditionally been the bread and butter of Dick Handler’s operation generated just $153 million in revenue.

CEO Handler blamed that decline on a lack of trading in the market and fewer companies selling junk bonds.

To be sure, Q2 was better than the paltry $126 million in the previous quarter, however, the streak of year-over-year declines is now becoming very disturbing for a bank for which an ongoing collapse in fixed income trading will spell certain doom for any ambitious expanion plans, and most likely will result in dramatic headcount reductions to the point where not even fired UBS bankers will be able to find a job at what has long been known as Wall Street’s “safety bank.”

Unfortunately for both Jefferies and all of its other FICC-reliant peers, we have bad news: the drought in fixed income profits is only going to get worse for two main reasons: turnover, as a function of collapsing liquidity in all markets not just debt, has plunged to match the lowest levels in history, and while junk bond turnover is not quite record low yet, it is rapidly approaching its lowest print as well.

But it is not just turnover that is cratering. Even worse is that as electronic trading is increasingly penetrating this final frontier for Virtu (which recently fully took over FX trading leading to now weekly if not daily USD flash crashes following a headline overload), in addition to lack of trading interest (because in a centrally-planned market nobody sells until everybody sells… into a bidless market), the bid/ask spreads are collapsing as every broker fights tooth and nail for those last remaining pennies.

In short: anyone hoping that the Goldmans of the world will fare any better than Jefferies (which unlike the aforementioned hedge fund has far less revenue diversification and is thus forced to extract every possible dollar…
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Future Shock And The Greening Of America

Courtesy of Charles Hugh-Smith of OfTwoMinds

During our recent breakfast meeting in Berkeley, author/blogger Jim Kunstler suggested that the coherence of eras waxed and waned, and the present era was incoherent. By this he meant the narratives being propagated by the status quo no longer align with reality, and often conflict with one another, resulting in incoherence.

There is a time lag of many years between fast-changing events and our ability to make sense of them, i.e. construct a coherent account or narrative of what we collectively experienced.

Each era has its Big Events and trends, but the last era with truly ground-shifting changes that affected virtually everyone in the nation in one way or another was the 1960s. 9/11 increased airport security but other than that, the changes wrought by the Global War on Terror (GWOT) only heavily impact narrow slices of the state and populace--the armed forces and security agencies.

The same can be said of the Global Financial Meltdown of 2008-09: the Zero Interest Rate Policy (ZIRP) destroyed the yield on savings, but the daily-life effects on most people have been relatively restrained compared to far more disruptive eras; some have seen their portfolios skyrocket in value, but most households have seen their real net worth decline. Social welfare did its job of providing a safety net for those who lost their jobs in the recession.

The 1960s visibly changed society in a few short years, and less visibly, the economy. Two books published in 1970, at the end of the tumultuous 1960s, attempted to weave a coherent narrative of what everyone was experiencing: Future Shock and The Greening of America.

Given that these books were embedded in the era, it's not surprising that some of their points appear naively off the mark to present-day readers: Future Shock: what the Tofflers Got Right and Wrong.
 
Toffler's definition of future shock is a personal perception of "too much change in too short a period of time". I wrote about Future Shock and Douglas Ruskoff's Present Shock: When Everything Happens Now in Present Shock and the Loss of History and Context and previously, about Effort Shock and Future Shock.
 
What I find fascinating is our limited ability to make sense of trends unfolding in real time. The Greening of America, for example, posited three types


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Goldman And SocGen Unleash The “C”-Word: ECB Alone Can’t Contain Grexit Risks

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Unnamed "officials" have proclaimed a new set of Greek proposals received by Brussels tonight as "a good base," according to AFP, and thusly the Euro is very modestly bid. However, both Socgen (without a 3rd bailout of €60-80 billion over the next 3 years, Greek uncertainty remains high and leaves Grexit risk merely semi-stable) and Goldman (a deal will come only after the introduction of capital controls, a technical default on the IMF and issuance of IOUs/and a further build-up of arreas… and the damage resulting from a breaking of the integrity of the Euro would not be fixed by monetary policy alone) leave us wondering just who is buying Euros and US stocks and selling Swiss Francs as D(efault) Day looms and the 'C' word (contagion) spreads.

Sure why not…

A good early start to the rumor mill…

But SocGen remains unconvinced…

At best, a semi-stable agreement is in the making

In calling Monday’s emergency summit on Greece, European Council President Greece warned Friday that we are “close to the point where the Greek government will have to choose between accepting what I believe is a good offer of continued support or to head towards default”. He further added that “there is still time, but only a few days”. In Athens, the weekend saw a flurry of activity that concluded with a conference call with Prime Minister Tsipras, Chancellor Merkel, President Hollande and Commission President Juncker. Few details have emerged, however, on what was said on the call.

Back in early June, both Greece and its creditors presented proposals for an agreement. At the time, Prime Minister Tsipras was told that any measures replaced must deliver the same fiscal impact. The proposed alternatives have, however, so far not been deemed credible by Greece’s creditors.

Reducing tax exemptions: According to the news flow, the new proposal contains scrapping of a range of tax exemptions and a further reduction in early retirement schemes. The aim is to protect broader pensions from further cuts (the creditors want to see savings of 1% of GDP annually by 2016-17) and avoid a VAT increase on electricity. Furthermore, the creditors


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Fake Boobs, Flying Saucers, & Furniture: What’s Your State’s Stereotype?

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

They are called stereotypes for a reason…

Source: Yuri Tsvetkov





Credit Market Warning

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Submitted by Chris Martenson via PeakProsperity.com,

There are large signs of stress now present in the credit markets. You might not know it from today's multi-generationally low interest rates, but other key measures such as liquidity and volatility are flashing worrying signs.

Look, we all know that this centrally planned experiment forcing financial assets ever higher is simply fostering multiple bubbles, each in search of a pin. As all bubbles do, they are going to end with bang.

I keep my eyes on the credit markets because that’s where the real trouble is brewing.

Today’s markets are so distorted that you can reasonably argue that there’s not much in the way of useful signals emanating from them. And I wouldn’t put up too much of a counter-argument. But it's my contention that the bond market is the place to watch as it will provide the most useful clues that a reckoning has begun. And when these markets eventually return to earth, there will be blood in the streets. 

While some may hope that rising yields are signaling a return to more rapid economic growth, or at least that the fear of outright deflation has lessened, the more likely explanation is that something is wrong and it’s about to get… wronger.

Rising Yields

Let’s begin with the first canary in this story, rising yields. The yield of a bond, expressed as a rate of interest, moves oppositely to its price. The higher the price goes, the lower the yield goes. The lower the price, the higher the yield. Imagine the relationship like a playground see-saw.

Over these past few weeks and months, we’ve seen yields moving up quite a lot across a wide variety of bonds, at least in terms of the percentage size of the move (yes, the yields are still historically low by any measure).

Again, not everybody thinks this is ominous. Some think it’s a healthy sign that growth, as well as a "healthy" return to inflation, is on the way:

Interest rate climb brings out optimists

Jun 16, 2015

WASHINGTON — Consumers, businesses and investors are facing an era of higher borrowing costs as some of the lowest global interest rates in modern history begin to rise.

Yet the message from most economists is a reassuring one: Rates won't likely climb


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Water Wars Crush California Wineries: “Whoever Has The Longest Straw Wins”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Eerily reminiscent of the determinedly evil oil baron from the movie 'There Will Be Blood', Reuters reports the growing tensions amid California's drought-stricken wineries are boiling over: "There is way too much demand. I blame a lot of vineyards like other people do… It's a matter of who has the longest straw at the bottom of the bucket." No one should worry though, because the government is here to help – with a new water management agency…

Between 1990 and 2014, harvested wine grape acreage in the growing region around Paso Robles nearly quintupled to 37,408 acres, as vintners discovered that the area's rolling hills, rocky soil and mild climate were perfect for coaxing rich, sultry flavors from red wine grapes. But, as Reuters reports, in the last few years, California's ongoing drought has hit the region hard, reducing grape yields and depleting the vast aquifer that most of the area’s vineyards and rural residents rely on as their sole source of water other than rain.

Across the region, residential and vineyard wells have gone dry. Those who can afford to – including a number of large wineries and growers – have drilled ever-deeper wells, igniting tensions and leading some to question whether Paso Robles' burgeoning wine industry is sustainable.

"All of our water is being turned purple and shipped out of here in green glass," said Cam Berlogar, who delivers water, cuts custom lumber and sells classic truck parts in the Paso Robles-area community of Creston.

"There are a lot of farmers who are going to have to farm with a hell of a lot less water."

But, spurred by the drought, California Governor Jerry Brown last year signed a package of bills requiring groundwater-dependent areas to establish local water sustainability agencies by 2017. The agencies will then have between three and five years to adopt water management plans, and then another two decades to implement those plans.

Some residents worry that Paso Robles can't wait that long.

Aquifer depletion is difficult to model, but one report for the county of San Luis Obispo projected that, even with no additional growth, the water drawn from the basin would exceed that going in by 1.8 billion gallons annually between 2012 and 2040.   

"If it goes on unmanaged for another 10 years, it


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Large Caps Suffer Heavy Selling

Courtesy of Declan.

Large Caps suffer heavier selling; not enough to break the declining resistance trendline, but enough to register as distribution in one of the heaviest sell off days for 2015. Part of this volume was down to options expiration, but not enough to account for all of it. The S&P has mixed technical strength, and remains range bound by larger support and resistance between 2040 and 2135.


The Nasdaq was not as adversely impacted by Friday’s selling as the S&P, with Thursday’s breakout holding above 5096. Monday is a wait-and-see for the index.


The Russell 2000, as the lead index, experienced a simple flat day on Friday. Like the Nasdaq, it held on to its breakout.


Monday will be about maintaining Thursday’s breakouts for the Russell 2000 and Nasdaq, which will help the S&P win back some of the lost ground from Friday. Of course, Greece will again dominant the headlines with Monday’s deadline, but U.S. indices may be able to skirt the worst of it.

You’ve now read my opinion, next read Douglas’ and Jani’s.





More and More Warn That a Crash is Coming

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Phoenix Capital Research.

More and more insiders are warning of a potential systemic event.

The first sign of real trouble concerned a number of investment legends choosing to close shop and return investors’ capital.

The first real titan to bow out was Stanley Druckenmiller. Druckenmiller maintained average annual gains of nearly 30% for 30 years. He is arguably one of if not the greatest investor of the last three decades.

In 2010, he chose to close shop, foregoing billions in management fees.

Druckenmiller was not alone. In 2011, investment legend Carl Icahn closed his hedge fund to outside investors. Again, here was an investment legend who could lock in billions in investment management fees choosing to close up shop.

He has since stated he is "extremely worried" about stocks.

The list continues.

Seth Klarman used to manage the fourth largest hedge fund in the US. A legendary value investor (copies of his book Margin of Safety sells for over $1,500 on Amazon), Klarman returned billions in assets under management to outside investors citing “too few” opportunities in the market (again, a legend stating that the market was overvalued).

Even the perma-bulls are speaking with their actions.

Warren Buffett, perhaps the single biggest cheerleader for stocks in the last 100 years, is sitting on a record amount of cash. The reason is obvious: the market is dangerously overpriced.

His partner, Charlie Munger recently commented that he has not bought a single stock in his personal portfolio in over two years. This would once again indicate an investment legend stepped out of the market a year or so ago.

Beyond the legends, institutional investors have been net sellers of stocks in 2014 and on into 2015. The same goes for hedge funds.

Do you think they’d be doing this if they thought stocks were offering a lot of opportunities and value today?

And finally, we get to today, where one of the largest asset managers in the world at Fidelity stated that we are heading for a “systemic event… similar to 2008” and that owning precious metals and physical cash is a good idea.

The punch line?

This was a bond fund manager. One of the class of investors who have poo poo’d Gold and physical cash in the past because those assets pay next to or no dividend.
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Zero Hedge

Americans' Economic Hope Has Collapsed

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Which came first, the confidence or the stock market rally?

One thing is for sure, the crash in stocks in December has crushed the hope of Americans that their economic future is going to be better under President Trump.

Overall confidence dipped to 58.1 - a 4-month low, but, U.S. consumers this month were the most downbeat on the economy since November 2016, a third straight drop after expectations reached a 16-year high just three months earlier, as the partial government shutdown wears on toward a fourth week.

...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Triple Breakout Test In Play For S&P 500!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

Is the rally of late about to run out of steam or is a major breakout about to take place in the S&P 500? What happens at current prices should go a long way in determining this question.

This chart looks at the equal weight S&P 500 ETF (RSP) on a daily basis over the past 15-months.

The rally from the lows on Christmas Eve has RSP testing the top of a newly formed falling channel while testing the underneath side of the 2018 trading range and its falling 50-day moving average at (1).

At this time RPS is facing a triple resistance test. Wil...



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Phil's Favorites

Brexit deal flops, Theresa May survives -- so what happens now?

 

Brexit deal flops, Theresa May survives -- so what happens now?

Courtesy of Victoria Honeyman, University of Leeds

As the clock ticks down to March 29 2019, all of the political manoeuvring, negotiating, arguing and fighting is coming to a peak. In the two and a half years since the 2016 EU referendum, views on both sides have hardened and agreement still seems as far away as it was the day after the referendum.

With Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement disliked by all sides, and voted down by an unprecedented majority in the House of Commons, everyone is wondering what can and should be done next?

...



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Digital Currencies

Crypto-Bubble: Will Bitcoin Bottom In February Or Has It Already?

Courtesy of Michelle Jones via ValueWalk.com

The new year has been relatively good for the price of bitcoin after a spectacular collapse of the cryptocurrency bubble in 2018. It’s up notably since the middle of December and traded around the psychological level of $4,000... so is this a sign that the crypto market is about to recover?

Of course, it depends on who you ask, but one analyst discovered a pattern which might point to a bottom next month.

A year after the cryptocurrency bubble popped

CCN...



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ValueWalk

D.E. Shaw Investment Calls For Leadership Change At EQT

By ActivistInsight. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Elliott Management has offered to acquire QEP Resources for approximately $2.1 billion, contending the oil and gas explorer’s turnaround efforts have done little to lift the company’s share price. The company responded and said that a thorough review of the proposition is imperative in order to properly act in the best interests of shareholders, “taking into account the company’s other alternatives and current market conditions.” The news came only a month after Travelport Worldwide agreed to sell itself to Siris Capital Group and Elliott’s private equity arm Evergreen Coast Capital for $4.4 billion in cash and two months after Athenahealth was bought by Veritas and Evergreen for $5.7 bi...



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Insider Scoop

UBS Says Disney's Streaming Ambition Gives It A 'New Hope'

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related DIS Despite Some Risks, Analysts Still Expecting Double Digit Growth From Communications Services In Q4 ...

http://www.insidercow.com/ more from Insider

Chart School

Weekly Market Recap Jan 13, 2019

Courtesy of Blain.

In last week’s recap we asked:  “Has the Fed solved all the market’s problems in 1 speech?”

Thus far the market says yes!  As Guns n Roses preached – all we need is a little “patience”.  Four up days followed by a nominal down day Friday had the market following it’s normal pattern the past nearly 30 years – jumping whenever the Federal Reserve hints (or essentially says outright) it is here for the markets.   And in case you missed it the prior Friday, Chairman Powell came back out Thursday to reiterate the news – so…so… so… patient!

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell reinforced that message Thursday during a discussion at the Economic Club of Washington where he said that the central bank will be “fle...



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Members' Corner

Why Trump Can't Learn

 

Bill Eddy (lawyer, therapist, author) predicted Trump's chaotic presidency based on his high-conflict personality, which was evident years ago. This post, written in 2017, references a prescient article Bill wrote before Trump even became president, 5 Reasons Trump Can’t Learn. ~ Ilene 

Why Trump Can’t Learn

Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore (...



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Biotech

Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

Reminder: We are available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

Bacteriophage viruses infecting bacterial cells , Bacterial viruses. from www.shutterstock.com

Courtesy of John Bergeron, McGill University

Today, the scientific community is aghast at the prospect of gene editing to create “designer” humans. Gene editing may be of greater consequence than climate change, or even the consequences of unleashing the energy of the atom.

...

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Mapping The Market

Trump: "I Won't Be Here" When It Blows Up

By Jean-Luc

Maybe we should simply try him for treason right now:

Trump on Coming Debt Crisis: ‘I Won’t Be Here’ When It Blows Up

The president thinks the balancing of the nation’s books is going to, ultimately, be a future president’s problem.

By Asawin Suebsaeng and Lachlan Markay, Daily Beast

The friction came to a head in early 2017 when senior officials offered Trump charts and graphics laying out the numbers and showing a “hockey stick” spike in the nationa...



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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of September 11th, 2017

Reminder: OpTrader is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

This post is for all our live virtual trade ideas and daily comments. Please click on "comments" below to follow our live discussion. All of our current  trades are listed in the spreadsheet below, with entry price (1/2 in and All in), and exit prices (1/3 out, 2/3 out, and All out).

We also indicate our stop, which is most of the time the "5 day moving average". All trades, unless indicated, are front-month ATM options. 

Please feel free to participate in the discussion and ask any questions you might have about this virtual portfolio, by clicking on the "comments" link right below.

To learn more about the swing trading virtual portfolio (strategy, performance, FAQ, etc.), please click here ...



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Promotions

Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"

 

 

Here's a free ebook for you to check out! 

Phil has a chapter in a newly-released eBook that we think you’ll enjoy.

In My Top Strategies for 2017, Phil's chapter is Secret Santa’s Inflation Hedges for 2017.

This chapter isn’t about risk or leverage. Phil present a few smart, practical ideas you can use as a hedge against inflation as well as hedging strategies designed to assist you in staying ahead of the markets.

Some other great content in this free eBook includes:

 

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About Phil:

Philip R. Davis is a founder Phil's Stock World, a stock and options trading site that teaches the art of options trading to newcomers and devises advanced strategies for expert traders...

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About Ilene:

Ilene is editor and affiliate program coordinator for PSW. She manages the site market shadows, archives, more. Contact Ilene to learn about our affiliate and content sharing programs.

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