Archive for 2017

College Awards $100,000 Prize To “Innovator For Social Justice”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Authored by Toni Airaksinen via CampusReform.org,

  • Grinnell College awards a $100,000 prize each year to an “Innovator for Social Justice,” and recently began accepting nominations for the 2018 recipient.
  • The "Innovator for Social Justice Prize" is the largest award given by a U.S. college for efforts to promote social justice, and has disbursed at least $1.5 million since 2011.

Grinnell College awards a $100,000 prize each year to an “Innovator for Social Justice,” according to a nomination form that went live on Sunday.

The “Grinnell College Innovator for Social Justice Prize” is the largest award given by a U.S college to promote social justice. Half of the money is awarded directly to the winner, while the other half goes to the organization that the winner represents.

“With the creation of the Grinnell Prize, the College is extending its educational mission beyond the campus and alumni community to individuals anywhere who believe innovative social justice programs create a better world,” the school boasts on its website, noting that students and staff members are offered the chance to work with prize-winners and their organizations through “student internships and staff fellowships.”

Funded with “discretionary funds from the College’s endowment,” the school has awarded at least $1.5 million dollars since the prize was launched in 2011. Three prizes were awarded in each of the first two years, after which the number was reduced to two until 2017, when only one recipient was selected.

The nomination form encourages people to nominate individuals, including current students and alumni, who are “a force for social justice,” noting that nominees “should have identified a concrete social justice need, designed creative and socially just solutions to address that need, and made a substantive impact through their hard work and dedication.”

The school asserts that there is not “one specific definition of social justice,” saying the concept should be “interpreted broadly” and that it’s up to the person who makes the nomination “to make the case as to how his or her nominee effects positive social change.”

Grinnell College President Raynard S. Kington defended the creation of the expensive


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Five Pieces Of Tech Nostalgia That Shaped The Future

Courtesy of Zero Hedge

Although many of the devices listed below may be confined to your garages or dusty drawers, as Visual Capitalist's Chris Matei notes, the influence they had on modern technology is pretty much unsurpassed.

Today’s infographic from Safe Company is a throwback to the 1980s and 1990s, making us nostalgic for the heyday of these popular gadgets.

Courtesy of: Visual Capitalist

 

TECH GOES MOBILE

The gadgets of the 80s and 90s were all about taking existing technology and making it more enjoyable while on the go, rather than solely being useful in the home or office. Even if that meant devices that were “portable” in name only, it was a huge step forward.

Devices like the Game Boy, Walkman, early Nokia phones, and other mobile technologies helped lead engineers to solve the problems that would lay the ground for today’s “world in the palm of your hand”. Improving power consumption efficiency, developing new battery types, reducing size, creating screens that were readable in a variety of light conditions, and even opening up the demand for aftermarket accessories were among these advancements.

BROADENING MEDIA ACCESS

The latter 20th century will be remembered for democratizing access to all kinds of information, both for work and for play. Technologies of the 90s set a precedent for the bite-sized span of modern digital attention. Microsoft’s Encarta encyclopedia suite allowed comprehensive keyword search before the optimization of online alternatives. Simply type a word, and get every piece of information related to it – without the need to purchase updated versions including new data each year. It sounds almost comical to tout these as features in the age of Google, but compare Encarta to the alternative: carrying around a set of Encyclopedias!

On the leisure side, the wildly faddish Tamagotchi feels like a forebear of 2010-era mobile games – cleverly designed to create a cycle of short, addictive bursts of play with a low cost of access. The ever beeping, cutesy reward loop of caring for your Tamagotchi may have annoyed a generation of parents, but it inspired a whole genre of bite-size digital entertainment.

Even the Walkman launched a new frontier of access to


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Weekly Market Recap Jul 23, 2017

Courtesy of Blain.

This past week represented so many of the weeks of 2017; slow action with a bit of an upward skew.   Monday, Tuesday, Thursday were sleeping – and minor gains Wednesday were offset by small losses Friday; in the end we had small gains for the week!  Rinse, wash, repeat.   For the week the S&P 500 added 0.5% and the NASDAQ 1.2%.  Sixty eight S&P 500 companies reported earnings this past week so that was the focus.

Fun fact:  Until Friday’s loss, the NASDAQ had a 10 day string of gains, matching its longest streak since Feb. 24, 2015.

The European Central Bank left key rates unchanged, but President Mario Draghi was vague about future asset purchases, stressing a tightening of financial conditions due to the euro’s recent appreciation.

Economic news state side was not really market moving but it is worth noting China beat forecasts with 6.9% second-quarter growth.

Here is the 5 day weekly “intraday” chart of the S&P 500 .. via Jill Mislinski. (Friday is missing but the S&P 500 slid a tiny bit on the day)

Quite a turnaround from the post November move on “Trump = strong dollar” theory.

Want to travel from D.C. to NYC in 29 minutes?  Elon Musk wants to help!

The week ahead…

More S&P 500 type earnings coming this week.  The Fed will also meet and make an announcement Wednesday but no one expects action and “dovish Yellen” made her appearance on Capitol Hill 2 weeks ago so everything is back to normal there.

Nearly 200 companies on the S&P 500 are expected to report in the coming week.  These include Google’s parent Alphanet (GOOGL), Facebook (FB), Amazon (AMZN), Intel (INTC), and Exxon (XOM).

Earnings for the S&P 500 are tracking at an estimated 7.2% growth for the second quarter with about 20% of companies having already reported.  That figure, however, can be a little misleading given that energy earnings are expected to rise more than 300% from the year-ago quarter. Only the tech sector and the


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Russell Clark Speaks In RealVision’s “Most Requested Interview Ever”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

According to RealVision, he’s one of the greatest investors you’ve never heard of. According to us, he ran what was (formerly) the world's most bearish hedge fund, although at the end of 2016, after suffering substantial losses, he capitulated and went flat, after closing much of his short book.

To be sure, Russell Clark, and his Horseman Global (which after phenomenal returns for much in the post-crisis period, closed 2016 with a thud, dropping 24% and down another 8% YTD, isn’t a household name. But in investment circles, he’s known as one of the world's most aggresive, and better, short sellers.

In a rare camera appearance, Russell Clark sat down with Real Vision TV’s Raoul Pal in what has been dubbed as "one of RealVision's most requested interviews ever", to discuss investing and share his approach to markets.

In one part of the interview, Clark says that one reason for his success is his focus on currencies. While for many investors the risk and reward of currencies is an afterthought, it forms the base of Clark’s investment worldview. “What we try and do is invert the process,” Clark says. “So, we'd put currencies at the beginning of the investment process rather than at the end. And that's really been the heart of how I look at things…”

Next, as we conveniently laid out just yesterday in "Why Horseman Global Is Aggressively Shorting Shale", Clark touches on his short shale thesis, telling Pal that shale oil is "an industry that shouldn’t exist."

As we discussed yesterday, Clark has once again emerged from his recent "neutral" position and is shorting shale oil stocks. According to Clark, shale oil companies “never make any money,” and the industry only exists because borrowing costs are so low.

He compares U.S. shale today to China’s steel industry in 2012 – just before it crashed. For those who missed it, here are more details on his latest short bet from his latest letter to Horseman investors:

I had shorted shale producers and the related MLP stocks before, and I knew there was something


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“It Feels Like An Avalanche”: China’s Crackdown On Conglomerates Has Sent A “Shock Wave” Across Markets

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

The first to suffer Beijing's crackdown against China's private merger-crazy conglomerates, wave was the acquisitive "insurance" behemoth, Anbang, whose CEO Wu Xiaohui briefly disappeared as the Politburo made it clear that the "old way" of money laundering – via offshore deals – is no longer tolerated. Then, several weeks later and shortly after the stocks of the "famous four" Chinese conglomerates plunged after China officially launched a crackdown on foreign acquirers amid concerns of "systemic risk", it was HNA's turn, which as we described last week, risks becoming a "reverse rollup from hell", as HNA's stock tumbled, sending the LTV of billions in loans collateralized by the company's shares soaring and in danger of unleashing an catastrophic margin call among the company's lenders.

Then Beijing's attention shifted to the biggest conglomerate of them all: billionaire Wang Jianlin’s Dalian Wanda Group, which as the WSJ and Bloomberg reported was being "punished" by Beijing, and would see its funding cutoff after China "concluded the conglomerate breached restrictions for overseas investments."

The scrutiny could rein in Wang’s ambitious attempt to create a global entertainment empire, including Hollywood production companies and a giant cinema chain he’s built up through acquisitions from the U.S. to the U.K. Six investments, such as the purchases of Nordic Cinema Group Holding AB and Carmike Cinemas Inc., were found to have violations, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing a private matter. The retaliatory measures will include banning banks from providing Wanda with financial support linked to these projects and barring the company from selling those assets to any local companies, the people said.

The move is an unprecedented setback for the country’s second-richest man, who has announced more than $20 billion of deals since the beginning of 2016. By targeting one of the nation’s top businessmen, the government is escalating its broader crackdown on capital outflows and further chilling the prospects of overseas acquisitions during a politically sensitive year in China.

Summarizing the abrupt shift in sentiment in China was Castor Pang, head of research at Core-Pacific Yamaichi, who said that “to investors, political risk is now the biggest concern when investing in


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A new vaccine is promising to advance the frontier of eliminating malaria

Reminder: Pharmboy and Ilene are available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

A new vaccine is promising to advance the frontier of eliminating malaria

Courtesy of Simon KariukiKenya Medical Research Institute

File 20170630 8190 11ktn0z

A malaria vaccine will be piloted in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi to assess its suitability. Siegfried Modola/Reuters.

More than 30 malaria vaccine candidates are at various stages of development. The RTS,S vaccine is at the most advanced stage.

The World Health Organisation has recommended the introduction of the vaccine in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi as a pilot programme to assess its suitability in expanded immunisation programmes.

The vaccine could prove to be a powerful tool in sustaining the gains made in the last decade in reducing malaria related cases and deaths. Between 2000 and 2015, new malaria cases fell by 37% globally, and by 42% in Africa. This has been achieved through key interventions such as using treated bed nets, spraying houses with insecticides and effective antimalarial drugs.

Combined with existing malaria interventions, the vaccine would have the potential to save tens of thousands of lives in Africa. It’s important for two other reasons too.

Firstly, it would reduce the cost of managing malaria. Historically, vaccines are more cost-effective in preventing the spread of diseases compared to other methods.

Secondly, the vaccine could deal with resistance to both drugs and insecticides that’s on the rise.

The vaccine’s history

The RTS,S malaria vaccine was created in 1987 by scientists working at GlaxoSmithKline laboratories. Early clinical development of the vaccine was conducted in collaboration with the Walter Reed Army Institute for Research.

In January 2001, GlaxoSmithKline and PATH’s Malaria Vaccine Initiative entered into a public-private partnership to develop RTS,S for infants and young children living in malaria-endemic regions of sub-Saharan Africa.

Phase I and II clinical trials allowed an initial assessment of the safety and efficacy of the vaccine, initially in adult volunteers in the US and Belgium.

This was followed by adults, adolescents, children, and then infants living in…
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Fukushima’s “Swimming Robot” Captures First Images Of ‘Massive Deposits’ Of Melted Nuclear Fuel

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

The “Little Sunfish,” the swimming robot that TEPCO is using to capture images of the containment vessel in the Unit 3 reactor of the ruined Fukushima power plant, has brought back the goods.

A trove of new images captured in the past few days show what is likely to be melted nuclear fuel from inside the reactor, what Bloomberg describes as a “potential milestone” in the cleanup of one of the worst atomic disasters in history.

The pictures show what looks to be the melted nuclear fuel that caused the worst-ever nuclear disaster when northeastern Japan was hit by a massive earthquake and tsunami in March 2011. If confirmed, these would be the first discovery of the fuel, which is being sought by TEPCO as part of the cleanup effort.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. Holdings Inc., Japan’s biggest utility, released images on Saturday of mounds of black rock and sand-like substances at the bottom of the No. 3 reactor containment vessel at Fukushima, which is likely to contain melted fuel, according to Takahiro Kimoto, an official at the company. A survey on Friday found black icicles hanging from the above pressure vessel, which was “highly likely” to contain melted fuel. Kimoto noted it would take time to confirm whether this debris contains melted fuel.

'The pictures that we have gained will assist us in devising a plan for removing the melted fuel,' Kimoto told reporters Saturday night in Tokyo. 'Taking pictures of how debris scattered inside of the reactor was a big accomplishment.'

If confirmed, these pictures would be the first discovery of the fuel that melted during the triple reactor accident at Fukushima six years ago. For Tokyo Electric, which bears most of the cleanup costs, the discovery would help the utility design a way to remove the highly-radioactive material.”

The pictures were taken by the “Little Sunfish,” the Toshiba-designed robot the company sent into the destroyed reactors to explore the inside of the reactor for the first time from July 19. The robot, 30 centimeters (12 inches) long that can swim in the flooded unit, was tasked with surveying the damage inside and also finding the location of corium, which is


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Good Close For Markets Bar Small Caps

Courtesy of Declan.

Bulls were not to give up the breakout gains from earlier in the week and with the exception of the Russell 2000 it was a decent finish for markets.




Action in the Russell 2000 was only disappointing because it was unable to hold on to early day gains.  The spike high may mark resistance over the coming days as Friday’s candlestick was a typical reversal marker. Technicals are healthy, although the index is underperforming relative to Tech and Large Caps.






Large Caps had best of the action. The S&P finished above its open while the Dow Industrials clung on to its breakout.






The Nasdaq held its ground and Tech averages remain the strongest of the indices.  Momentum traders should keep their focus here.





For Monday, look for Friday’s gains to push on to new highs. Shorts should watch the Russell 2000, particularly if there is a move into Friday’s spike high range – this might be an opportunity to take an aggressive short with a stop above Friday’s high.




You’ve now read my opinion, next read Douglas’ blog.




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Detroit Is Demolishing Homes With Federal Money Meant “To Save Them”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Contrary to popular perception, not all of the money approved as part of the federal government’s emergency effort to save the American financial system in the fall of 2008 went to the big banks. Some of it – nearly $10 billion, all told – went to support the government’s “hardest hit” program, meant to help forestall foreclosures in 18 states.

And unsurprisingly, nearly a decade after the program was signed into law, government investigators are finding that much of this money was squandered by state governments. Money initially earmarked to help troubled homeowners struggling with underwater mortgages was instead spent on demolitions meant to boost prices of surrounding homes and help ward off crime in city neighborhoods. Except the money was often squandered by state governments, disproportionately robbing poor citizens in cities like Detroit of a program meant to save them from homelessness.

As the Detroit Metro Times reports, Detroit's decade-long wave of tax and mortgage foreclosures has wiped out large swaths of the city's neighborhoods as Wayne County continues to seize thousands of occupied homes a year. The city's neediest homeowners were supposed to receive federal assistance to save their homes as part of the Treasury Department's seven-year-old Hardest Hit Fund. But the State of Michigan squandered its money by adopting unnecessarily stringent requirements — according to a scathing audit issued in January by the Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP).

In 2010, Michigan originally received nearly $500 million to provide loans to eligible homeowners who were facing tax or mortgage foreclosure. But the program, called Step Forward Michigan, rejected funding for about 5,000 Detroiters, while assisting more than 2,000 homeowners who earned at least $70,000 a year. That number eventually swelled to $761 million, and of that amount, half was committed to demolitions.

As a result, more than 80 percent of Detroiters making $30,000 or less a year were denied assistance to save their homes from tax or mortgage foreclosure. By contrast, the other 17 states with Hardest Hit Funds rejected 53 percent of homeowners making less than $30,000.

"Michigan and Ohio are among the states that have the most TARP dollars set aside, but also


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Curreen Capital – Do I Regret Selling Those Stocks?

By VW Staff. Originally published at ValueWalk.




Curreen Capital – Do I Regret Selling Those Stocks?

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ValueWalk

#1 Performing Global Macro Hedge Fund Sees More Shorts Opportunities Ahead As China Bursts

By Jacob Wolinsky. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Crescat Global Macro Fund update to investors on 1/19/2019

Crescat Global Macro Fund and Crescat Long/Short fund delivered strong returns for both December and full year 2018 in a difficult market. Based on ...



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Zero Hedge

Johns Hopkins, Bristol-Myers Face $1 Billion Suit For Infecting Guatemalan Hookers With Syphilis 

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

A federal judge in Maryland said Johns Hopkins University, pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb and the Rockefeller Foundation must face a $1 billion lawsuit over their roles in a top-secret program in the 1940s ran by the US government that injected hundreds of Guatemalans with syphilis, reported Reuters.

Several doctors from Hopkins an...



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Phil's Favorites

Divisive economics

 

Guest author David Brin — scientist, technology consultant, best-selling author and futurist — explores the records of Democrats and Republicans on the US economy in the following post. For David's latest posts, visit the CONTRARY BRIN blog. For his books and short stories, visit his web...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Stock declines did not break 9-year support, says Joe Friday

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

We often hear “Stocks take an escalator up and an elevator down!” No doubt stocks did experience a swift decline from the September highs to the Christmas eve lows. Looks like the “elevator” part of the phrase came true as 2018 was coming to an end.

The first part of the “stocks take an escalator up” seems to still be in play as well despite the swift decline of late.

Joe Friday Just The Facts Ma’am- All of these indices hit long-term rising support on Christmas Eve at each (1), where support held and rallies have followed.

If you find long-term perspectives helpf...



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Digital Currencies

Transparency and privacy: Empowering people through blockchain

 

Transparency and privacy: Empowering people through blockchain

Blockchain technologies can empower people by allowing them more control over their user data. Shutterstock

Courtesy of Ajay Kumar Shrestha, University of Saskatchewan

Blockchain has already proven its huge influence on the financial world with its first application in the form of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. It might not be long before its impact is felt everywhere.

Blockchain is a secure chain of digital records that exist on multiple computers simultaneously so no record can be erased or falsified. The...



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Insider Scoop

Cars.com Explores Strategic Alternatives, Analyst Sees Possible Sale Price Around $30 Per Share

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related 44 Biggest Movers From Yesterday 38 Stocks Moving In Wednesday's Mid-Day Session ...

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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.

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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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