Archive for the ‘Phil’s Favorites’ Category

How America’s partisan divide over pandemic responses played out in the states

 

How America’s partisan divide over pandemic responses played out in the states

The COVID-19 pandemic seems to have widened the partisan divide between Democrats and Republicans on health care. John M. Lund Photography/Getty Images

Courtesy of Julie VanDusky-Allen, Boise State University and Olga Shvetsova, Binghamton University, State University of New York

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, a partisan divide has existed over the appropriate government response to the public health crisis. Democrats have been more likely to favor stricter policies such as prolonged economic shutdowns, limits on gathering in groups and mask mandates. Republicans overall have favored less stringent policies.

As political scientists and public health scholars, we’ve been studying political responses to the pandemic and their impacts. In research published in the summer of 2020, we found that “sub-governments,” which in the U.S. means state governments, tended to have a bigger impact on the direction of pandemic policies than the federal government. Now, as data on last year’s case and death rates emerge, we’re looking at whether the political party in the governor’s office became a good predictor of public health outcomes as COVID-19 moved across the country.

Looking at states’ COVID-19 case and death rates, researchers are finding the more stringent policies typical of Democratic governors led to lower rates of infections and deaths, compared to the the pandemic responses of the average Republican governor. In preparation for future pandemics, it may be worth considering how to address the impact that a state government’s partisan leanings can have on the scope and severity of a public health crises.

Comparing responses by Democratic and Republican governors

To compare and chart our state-by-state COVID-19 policy stringency data, we’ve developed our “Protective Policy Index.” To calculate this index, we took into account the types of policies state governments adopted over the course of the pandemic, such as school closings, lockdowns and mandatory mask mandates. We combined the adopted measures for each state over time to calculate the index. Higher values of the index indicate states adopted more stringent measures.

When we charted the policy responses of Democratic and Republican governors between May 1 and July 31, 2020, they revealed…
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The thing you need to hear about inflation

 

The thing you need to hear about inflation

Courtesy of 

We don’t have the same economy as we had in the 1970’s. Thinking about inflation through the lens of the 70’s is incorrect. We have an economy built around intangibles and consumer spending, not metals, mining, heavy industry and manufacturing. Technology will remain a disinflationary force, perhaps the most important force in the economy.

Please listen to this very important explanation for why inflation will indeed be transitory from Viktor Shvets, a Managing Director at Macquarie, on the Odd Lots podcast with my friends Tracy and Joe. I am telling you that this is must-listen…

 





Tesla Suspends Bitcoin Payments Over “Concerns About Environmental Impact”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge

After announcing plans to accept payment for Tesla's cars in bitcoin back in February, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has just announced via tweet that the company will suspend bitcoin payments over concerns about the environment.

As perhaps the biggest booster of bitcoin in corporate America, Tesla announced during its Q1 earnings report released last month that it made a $272 million profit selling some of the bitcoin it had purchased on the company's balance sheet. Earlier this week, Musk joked about the possibility that the firm might accept Doge for payment.

In a note published on Twitter, Musk wrote that while he is still personally a believer in the crypto currency, Tesla has become concerned about the role of fossil fuels in bitcoin mining, a common criticism made by environmentalists against bitcoin. "Cryptocurrency is a great idea on many levels and has a promising future but this cannot come at a great cost to the environmet," Musk wrote. He added that the company "will not be selling any bitcoin and we intend to use it for transactions as soonas mining transitions to a more sustainable energy."

The note comes after Musk joked earlier this week about the prospect of the company accepting payment in Dogecoin as well.

The price of bitcoin kneejerked lower on Musk's tweet, according to Coin Market Cap, extending its 24-hour decline to 6%.

While the initial reaction in crypto was anything but bullish, analysts quickly noted that this could be good news for ethereum, as Musk noted in his tweet that Tesla will be looking at alternatives in the crypto space that use "

As JPM recently pointed out in a note to clients, ESG factors are one reason ethereum's explosive move higher, which has made it a standout crypto performer in recent weeks, will likely continue. The greater focus by investors on ESG has shifted attention away from the energy intensive bitcoin blockchain to the ethereum blockchain, which in anticipation of Ethereum 2.0 is expected to become a lot more energy efficient by the end of 2022. Ethereum 2.0 involves a shift


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Ethereum Reaches Record High $500 Billion Market Cap, Now Bigger Than JPMorgan

Courtesy of ZeroHedge

Dip-buyers have charged in after Monday's flash-crash in cryptos, sending Ethereum to a new record high near $4400…

Source: Bloomberg

That has pushed Ethereum's market cap above $500 billion, now larger than JPMorgan…

Source: 8marketcap.com,

As CoinTelegraph reports, Ether is the second cryptocurrency to hit a $500-billion market cap after Bitcoin. Ether took significantly less time to become a half-a-trillion-dollar asset

Launched in January 2009, Bitcoin took nearly 12 years to reach a $500-billion market capitalization in December 2020 at a price above $27,000. As the first version of an Ethereum cryptocurrency protocol was launched in July 2015, Ether is now five years and 10 months old.

As previously reported by Cointelegraph, Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin became a billionaire after Ether’s price rose above $3,000 on May 3. Megan Kaspar, a crypto analyst and co-founder of digital asset investment firm Magnetic, believes that Ether is now on track to hit a price target between $8,000 and $10,000 by late 2021. The analyst previously reportedly predicted that ETH would hit $3,400 when the cryptocurrency was trading about $1,200.

Bitcoin is lower on the day, driving the ETH/BTC ratio to its highest since June 2018…

Source: Bloomberg

It is also worth noting the sudden appearance of "Internet Computer" which was released Monday and is now in the Top 10 cryptocurrencies by market cap…

Source: CoinMarketCap.com

A quick look into the token’s issuing authority, Internet Computer, described it as a “blockchain-based cloud computing project” that proposes to build an open, public network. But the biggest takeaway for traders was the involvement of high-profile institutional players in the project. As CoinTelegraph reports, in retrospect, Dfinity aims to develop a blockchain-based infrastructure, one in which the internet itself supports software applications instead of cloud hosting providers.

Its Internet Computer protocol proposes to host online services, such as social media, messaging, search, storage and peer-to-peer digital interactions, atop its public Web 3.0 cloud-like


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The Smartest Guys in the Room Call Bitcoin “Rat Poison Squared,” “a Colossal Pump-and-Dump Scheme” and “a Big Criminal Scam” but Federal Regulators Look the Other Way

Courtesy of Pam Martens

Bitcoin GraphicAnne Goldgar wrote of the Dutch Tulip bubble in her 2007 book, Money, Honor, and Knowledge in the Dutch Golden Age, that “the f1000 one might pay in January 1637 for one hypothetical Admirael van der Eyck bulb,” could have bought “a modest house in Haarlem,” or “nearly three years’ wages” of a master carpenter. Comparing that to U.S. dollars in 2007, the year her book was released, Goldgar says it would be like one Tulip bulb selling for $12,000.

Goldgar notes that as historians have looked back at this episode, the tulip mania of the 1630s in Holland has become a “byword for idiocy.”

In his 1841 classic on market bubbles, Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds, the Scottish journalist Charles Mackay wrote this about the Tulip bubble: “The rage among the Dutch to possess them was so great that the ordinary industry of the country was neglected…”

Four centuries have apparently not cured the propensity toward idiocy when the lure of riches beckons. The market cap of Bitcoin is now in excess of $1 trillion, despite the fact that it is backed by absolutely nothing.

No amount of disdain toward Bitcoin by the smartest guys in the room can stop the creature’s incessant climb. Bitcoin has multiplied more than five-fold since September, trading yesterday at over $56,000.

Bitcoin has been thoroughly discredited by some of the smartest people in the investment community and global finance, but that hasn’t stopped the oldest futures exchange in the U.S., CME Group, from offering futures and options trading on Bitcoin. CME Group’s federal regulator, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), explains in this podcast that all that CME Group had to do to launch its Bitcoin futures was to “self-certify” its plan with its regulator, the CFTC. The self-certified plan may be just fine – it’s the underlying product based on nothing that the regulator seems to have ignored.

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Why Everyone is Selling Their Tech Stocks

 

Why Everyone is Selling Their Tech Stocks

Courtesy of The Reformed Broker

5:30pm ET LIVE premiere today – Subscribe for the alert!

Join Downtown Josh Brown and Michael Batnick for another round of What Are Your Thoughts? On this week’s episode, Josh and Michael discuss the biggest topics in investing and finance, including:

  • Tech Selloff – “To call this earnings season a blowout would be an understatement.”
  • Business Media – The WSJ and Barron’s parent saw the highest year-over-year increase in total subscriptions in its history.
  • Crypto Regulation – It’s coming.
  • Fama’s Nobel Prize – Does the rise of Dogecoin throw cold water on the Efficient Market Hypothesis?
  • Elon SNL Reaction – Josh’s take on Elon Musk’s Saturday Night Live appearance.
  • Biggest Threat to Tech – Michael considers what might topple the reigning Tech Kings.
  • How Long is “Long”? – A viewer asks Josh what a reasonable long term investment timeframe looks like.
  • 3x Leveraged ETFs – Michael opens back up his investment diary to discuss his leveraged ETF past.

And much more!

Josh and Michael (and Ben) use YCharts when creating visuals for this show, as well as for many aspects of their business. 

Standard disclaimer

Check out the Goldmine podcast to hear more from Michael, Josh and the rest of the Ritholtz Mafia.





$QQQ VS $SPY

 

$QQQ VS $SPY

Courtesy of Howard Lindzon

I have been leaning heavily on $QQQ over $SPY for a very long time on this blog. It worked.

Here are two charts that offer up some short term and long term perspective of how that ratio is changing right now:

Technology is more pervasive right now so I doubt we see a crash the likes of 2001, but cycles happen and the money that is not leaving the market is rotating (as I have covered in Momentum Monday’s) into housing, commodities, energy, retail and financials.

These charts DO NOT take into account crypto or defi to hot areas of technology investing that I have been writing about here and allocating capital the last few years.

It will be interesting to see if these new hot areas of technology will hold up if the $QQQ vs $SPY trade continues to underperform.

Hopefully this gives everyone some perspective on what has been going on.

[For] many people this blip down in technology stocks has been brutal, but it is possible that it can get much worse.





US approves its first big offshore wind farm, near Martha’s Vineyard – it’s a breakthrough for the industry

 

US approves its first big offshore wind farm, near Martha's Vineyard – it’s a breakthrough for the industry

Building a U.S. offshore wind industry will require more than just fast-tracking permits. Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Courtesy of Erin Baker, University of Massachusetts Amherst and Matthew Lackner, University of Massachusetts Amherst

The United States’ offshore wind industry is tiny, with just seven wind turbines operating off Rhode Island and Virginia. The few attempts to build large-scale wind farms like Europe’s have run into long delays, but that may be about to change.

On May 11, 2021, the U.S. government issued the final federal approval for the Vineyard Wind project, a utility-scale wind farm that has been over a decade in the planning. The wind farm’s developers plan to install 62 giant turbines in the Atlantic Ocean about 15 miles off Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, with enough capacity to power 400,000 homes with clean energy.

The project is the first approved since the Biden administration announced a goal in March to develop 30,000 megawatts of offshore wind capacity this decade and promised to accelerate the federal review process. To put that goal in perspective, the U.S. has just 42 megawatts today. Vineyard Wind expects to add 800 megawatts in 2023.

So, are we finally seeing the launch of a thriving offshore wind industry in the North America?

Several wind farm developers already hold leases in prime locations off the Eastern Seaboard, suggesting plenty of interest.

As engineering professors leading the Energy Transition Initiative and Wind Energy Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, we have been closely watching the industry’s challenges and progress. The process could move quickly once permitting and approvals are on track, but there are still obstacles.

Why offshore wind plans stalled under Trump

Vineyard Wind had planned to begin construction in 2019, but a ruling by the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management under the Trump administration stalled it. The ruling cast a shadow over other wind farm plans and hopes for an U.S. offshore wind industry.

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How Uber drivers avoided – and contributed to – the fate of taxi drivers

 

How Uber drivers avoided — and contributed to — the fate of taxi drivers

Why have Uber drivers been regarded more favourably than taxi drivers? Lexi Anderson/Unsplash

Courtesy of Kam Phung, York University, Canada; Luciana Turchick Hakak, University of The Fraser Valley; Madeline Toubiana, University of Alberta; Sean Buchanan, University of Manitoba, and Trish Ruebottom, McMaster University

Countries around the world are wrestling with whether to classify Uber drivers and other gig economy workers as independent contractors or employees.

But when Uber first came on the scene, the primary subject of debate was whether its drivers were, in fact, taxi drivers. Why was this ride-sharing or ride-hailing app run by a tech firm also applying to be a taxi company? Was Uber truly “the same as a taxi, but different?”

We’ve studied how Uber and taxi drivers have been affected by Uber’s categorization as a technology company. As organizational and management researchers at business schools from across Canada studying stigma, marginalization and inequality as well as entrepreneurship, innovation and technology, we became very interested in Uber’s entry into the taxi industry as we watched it unfold.

The CN Tower in the side-view mirror of a car

The CN Tower is seen in the side-view mirror of a car. (Daniel Novykov/Unsplash)

In Toronto, Uber was eventually legalized in 2016 after “months of protest and turmoil” and years of debate while it operated illegally.

But when we began studying Uber’s entry into Toronto, we noticed something concerning. There was increasing praise in the media for Uber and Uber drivers, but criticism and near-contempt for taxis and taxi drivers.

Kam Phung summarizes the study in his Top 25 Finalists’ video in the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council’s 2020 Storytellers challenge.

How were two groups of people doing the same work every day — driving other people to their desired destinations — being perceived so differently? As one Uber driver told us in an interview: “I don’t see the difference…
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At $49.1 Trillion, the U.S. Stock Market Is Larger than the Combined GDP of the U.S., China, Japan and Germany

Courtesy of Pam Martens

U.S. GDP Versus Total Stock Market Value

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens

When the motherlode of stock market bubbles finally pops, exposing the corrupt edifices on which it was built, you can count on one thing for sure – there will be lots of testimony before Congress that no one could have seen it coming.

The simple chart above, that took us 30 minutes to prepare in an Excel spreadsheet, is proof that anyone among the legions of Wall Street bank regulators at the Federal Reserve, the OCC, the FDIC, and the SEC can see what’s coming.

The chart compares U.S. GDP to the total stock market value at December 31, 1999, prior to the bursting of the dot.com bubble; at December 31, 2007, prior to the bursting of the subprime and derivatives bubble; and on December 31, 2020, prior to the bursting of whatever the bailout boys decide to call this bubble.

Our data for total stock market value comes from Siblis Research. Our data for GDP comes from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis as compiled by the St. Louis Fed. (Put your cursor on the graph line in the St. Louis Fed link for the GDP numbers by quarter.)

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Zero Hedge

Visualizing Key Generation-Defining Events In US History

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Looking back at history is a necessity when trying to understand what the future may hold.

Using insights from our Generational Power Index 2021 report, along with survey data from Pew Research in 2016, Visual Capitalist's ...



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Phil's Favorites

Here's how much your personal information is worth to cybercriminals - and what they do with it

 

Here’s how much your personal information is worth to cybercriminals – and what they do with it

The black market for stolen personal information motivates most data breaches. aleksey-martynyuk/iStock via Getty Images

Courtesy of Ravi Sen, Texas A&M University

Data breaches have become common, and billions of records are stolen worldwide every year. Most of the media coverage of data brea...



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Biotech/COVID-19

Herd immunity appears unlikely for COVID-19, but CDC says vaccinated people can ditch masks in most settings

 

Herd immunity appears unlikely for COVID-19, but CDC says vaccinated people can ditch masks in most settings

A woman walks by a sign in New York City amid the coronavirus pandemic on March 30, 2021. Noam Galai/Getty Images

Courtesy of William Petri, University of Virginia

When COVID-19 first began spreading, public health and medical experts began talking about the need for the U.S. to reach herd immunity to stop the coronavirus from spreading. Experts have estimated that between 60% and 90% of people in the U.S. w...



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Digital Currencies

Dogecoin Soars After Musk Tweets "Working With Doge Developers To Improve System Efficiency"

Courtesy of ZeroHedge

Just when you thought things couldn't get any more surreal after the past 24 hours, moments ago Elon Musk, who last night rejected bitcoin because its mining is "bad for the environment" as it consumes a lot of electricity (just wait until Elon discovers how all those rare earth metals that are in every electric car are mined, or what those electric cars run on), moments ago Musk poked the hornets nest again, and shortly after tweeting that 'it's high time there was a carbon tax'...

It is high time there was a carbon tax!

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 13, 2021

...

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Chart School

RTT browsing latest..

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

Please review a collection of WWW browsing results. The information here is delayed by a few months, members get the most recent content.



Date Found: Sunday, 22 November 2020, 05:47:49 PM

Click for popup. Clear your browser cache if image is not showing.


Comment: Bitcoin ambitions ...



Date Found: Sunday, 22 November 2020, 05:48:34 PM

Click for popup. Clear your browser cache if image is not showing.


Comment: PMI juiced back up ...



Date Found: Sunday, 22 November 2020, 05:49:42 PM
...

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Politics

If China's middle class continues to thrive and grow, what will it mean for the rest of the world?

 

If China's middle class continues to thrive and grow, what will it mean for the rest of the world?

Over the past few decades, hundreds of millions of Chinese citizens have become part of the middle class. AP Photo/Ng Han Guan

Courtesy of Amitrajeet A. Batabyal, Rochester Institute of Technology

China’s large and impressive accomplishments over the past four decades have spurred scholars and politicians to debate whether the decline of the West – including the ...



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ValueWalk

Managing Investments As A Charity Or Nonprofit

By Anna Peel. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Maintaining financial viability is a constant challenge for charities and nonprofit organizations.

Q4 2020 hedge fund letters, conferences and more

The past year has underscored that challenge. The pandemic has not just affected investment returns – it’s also had serious implications for charitable activities and the ability to fundraise. For some organizations, it’s even raised doubts about whether they can continue to operate.

Finding ways to generate long-term, sustainable returns for ...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Will Historic Selloff In Treasury Bonds Turn Into Opportunity?

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

Long-dated treasury bonds have been crushed over the past year, sending ETFs like TLT (20+ Year US Treasury Bond ETF) spiraling over 20%.

Improving economy? Inflation concerns? Perhaps a combination of both… interest rates have risen sharply and thus bond prices have fallen in historic fashion.

Today’s chart looks at $TLT over the past 20 years. As you can see, the recent decline has truly been historic. $TLT’s price has swung from historically overbought highs to oversold lows.

At present, the long-dated bond ETF ($TLT) is trading 7.8% below its 200-...



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Mapping The Market

Suez Canal: Critical Waterway Comes to a Halt

 

Suez Canal: Critical Waterway Comes to a Halt

Courtesy of Marcus Lu, Visual Capitalist

The Suez Canal: A Critical Waterway Comes to a Halt

On March 23, 2021, a massive ship named Ever Given became lodged in the Suez Canal, completely blocking traffic in both directions. According to the Suez Canal Authority, the 1,312 foot long (400 m) container ship ran aground during a sandstorm that caused low visibility, impacting the ship’s navigation. The vessel is owned by Taiwanese shipping firm, Evergreen Marine.

With over 2...



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Promotions

Phil's Stock World's Weekly Webinar - March 10, 2021

Don't miss our latest weekly webinar! 

Join us at PSW for LIVE Webinars every Wednesday afternoon at 1:00 PM EST.

Phil's Stock World's Weekly Webinar – March 10, 2021

 

Major Topics:

00:00:01 - EIA Petroleum Status Report
00:04:42 - Crude Oil WTI
00:12:52 - COVID-19 Update
00:22:08 - Bonds and Borrowed Funds | S&P 500
00:45:28 - COVID-19 Vaccination
00:48:32 - Trading Techniques
00:50:34 - PBR
00:50:43 - LYG
00:50:48 - More Trading Techniques
00:52:59 - Chinese Hacks Microsoft's E...



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The Technical Traders

Adaptive Fibonacci Price Modeling System Suggests Market Peak May Be Near

Courtesy of Technical Traders

Our Adaptive Fibonacci Price Modeling system is suggesting a moderate price peak may be already setting up in the NASDAQ while the Dow Jones, S&P500, and Transportation Index continue to rally beyond the projected Fibonacci Price Expansion Levels.  This indicates that capital may be shifting away from the already lofty Technology sector and into Basic Materials, Financials, Energy, Consumer Staples, Utilities, as well as other sectors.

This type of a structural market shift indicates a move away from speculation and towards Blue Chip returns. It suggests traders and investors are expecting the US consumer to come back strong (or at least hold up the market at...



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Lee's Free Thinking

Texas, Florida, Arizona, Georgia - The Branch COVIDIANS Are Still Burning Down the House

 

Texas, Florida, Arizona, Georgia – The Branch COVIDIANS Are Still Burning Down the House

Courtesy of Lee Adler, WallStreetExaminer 

The numbers of new cases in some of the hardest hit COVID19 states have started to plateau, or even decline, over the past few days. A few pundits have noted it and concluded that it was a hopeful sign. 

Is it real or is something else going on? Like a restriction in the numbers of tests, or simply the inability to test enough, or are some people simply giving up on getting tested? Because as we all know from our dear leader, the less testing, the less...



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Insider Scoop

Economic Data Scheduled For Friday

Courtesy of Benzinga

  • Data on nonfarm payrolls and unemployment rate for March will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET.
  • US Services Purchasing Managers' Index for March is scheduled for release at 9:45 a.m. ET.
  • The ISM's non-manufacturing index for March will be released at 10:00 a.m. ET.
  • The Baker Hughes North American rig count report for the latest week is scheduled for release at 1:00 p.m. ET.
...

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





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. Contact Ilene to learn about our affiliate and content sharing programs.