"They Were Seeing Blood": Bombshell Report Details CIA"s "Kidnap Or Kill" Plans Against WikiLeaks" Assange

"They Were Seeing Blood": Bombshell Report Details CIA"s "Kidnap Or Kill" Plans Against WikiLeaks" Assange.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nytSep 26th, 2021

Former Defense Secretary James Mattis told the Elizabeth Holmes jury that "there came a point when I didn"t know what to believe"

Former Defense Secretary James Mattis testified Wednesday at Elizabeth Holmes' fraud trial about his $85,000 investment and Theranos' military pilot. Former Defense Secretary James Mattis in 2017. Associated Press/Jacquelyn Martin James Mattis took the stand Wednesday in Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes' fraud trial. He said he invested $85,000 in Theranos and shared details about its military pilot project. The former defense secretary also said Holmes was his "sole" source of information about Theranos. See more stories on Insider's business page. Former US Defense Secretary James Mattis has revealed how much he invested in the now-defunct blood-testing startup Theranos. Mattis took the stand Wednesday in the fraud trial of Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes, testifying that he invested nearly $85,000 in the company, an amount he said was significant for someone who had worked in government for 40 years. Mattis also recalled the moment Holmes asked him to join Theranos' board. "I cautioned her I was not a medical person," he said, noting that Holmes said she valued a variety of backgrounds among board members.Mattis ultimately joined the board after leaving active duty in 2013. He said he received $150,000 a year to serve on the board. He testified that he invested and joined the board to "have skin in the game."The retired four-star general also said Holmes was his "sole" source of information about the company. During his testimony, several emails between Mattis and Holmes were shown as evidence. They showed the two discussing plans to test out Theranos' technology for potential use in the military. In an email in late 2011, Mattis told Holmes, "I'm trying to find a way to employ your device on a swift 'pilot project' or 'proof of principle' to expedite its entry to our forces."Holmes later responded, "It is on us to drive forward to get a pilot. Will do all it takes to make this happen and work though this process."Mattis went on to say that he wasn't aware when he joined the board that some of Theranos' tests were being run on third-party machines rather than the company's own Edison machines. After the Wall Street Journal published a bombshell investigation about the limits of Theranos' tests, Mattis began to question "whether or not Edison worked.""There came a point when I didn't know what to believe about Theranos anymore," he testified. "Looking back now I'm disappointed at the level of transparency...I couldn't see why we were being surprised by such fundamental issues."Mattis is one of more than 200 people listed as potential witnesses in the trial. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytSep 22nd, 2021

SCOTT GALLOWAY: "Squid Game" is a lesson. Streaming services are in a race to the top, and some are getting left behind.

As Netflix invests in "glocal" content across 40 countries, other streaming platforms are fighting to keep up. Netflix's innovation is committing to "glocal" content - content sourced and distributed locally with global scale. Youngkyu Park Scott Galloway is a bestselling author and professor of marketing at NYU Stern. The following is a recent blog post, republished with permission, that originally ran on his blog, "No Mercy / No Malice." In it, Galloway talks about how "the market of content is infinite," and how streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Disney+ are battling to dominate it. Two weeks ago, at the Code Conference, Endeavor CEO Ari Emanuel claimed "the total addressable market of content is infinite." Netflix is spending $17 billion a year to validate his thesis. So far, they're both right. Since last Friday, Netflix raised subscription prices in 11 countries by as much as 40%. A company's ability to raise prices is a function of the delta between the price and the perceived value. Nothing better illuminates this delta than the below chart: Scott Galloway Glocal"Squid Game" was sourced, written, and produced in South Korea. Within 10 days of its release, the show was No. 1 on Netflix in 90 countries. The Tarantino-meets-Terry-Gilliam take on children's games has the fastest-growing audience of any Netflix original ever, registering a 981% engagement increase in its first week. On TikTok, #SquidGame has been viewed more than 22.8 billion times. The jump in South Korean internet traffic was so great that internet service provider SK Broadband is suing Netflix to pay for the costs it's incurred to deliver the megahit.Q: How did this happen? A: Intentionally. Netflix landed on foreign shores in 2011, when it launched its service in 43 Latin American and Caribbean countries. Now it's available in every country except for China, North Korea, Syria, and the disputed region of Crimea. Four years ago, Co-CEO Reed Hastings estimated Netflix could achieve a 75% to 80% international user base. Currently its non-US streamers make up 65% of its users and generate 56% of total revenue. Netflix is far and away the world leader in distribution. Scott Galloway But expanding distribution globally is nothing new. That's been Hollywood's strategy for generations. Think big production budgets, special effects, and guys in capes. Netflix's innovation was committing to "glocal" content - content sourced and distributed locally with global scale and Nasdaq capital to build an army that's registered historic success. The company is now investing in original programming in 40 countries and has produced original scripted shows in 20 foreign languages. It's spent more than $1 billion on Korean content alone. This year the company has either built or announced plans to build two production facilities in South Korea, offices in Canada, Italy, Colombia, and Turkey, a production hub in Sweden, and a full-service post-production facility in India. In each country, Netflix hires content executives to commission work from the local creative community.The obvious benefit is more local content. South Koreans like "Spider-Man" and "Star Wars," but they have their own cultural traditions and preferences, too, as do the other 189 non-US countries in Netflix's empire. This is true in other industries. Only 10% of Nestlé brands are in more than one country, and fewer than 1% are in more than 10, as it recognizes people want global scale but local products. Consumers in other nations face a choice: the production values of US content or the relevance and connection of local content. Netflix offers both, and it can now provide more home cooking than any other firm. Take HBO Max. Its user interface cannot be changed from English, and it's produced original scripted programming in just two languages other than English. Peacock, Paramount+, and Apple TV+ have all produced none.The secret weapon here is boring and obvious - brute strength. Netflix will spend as much on content this year as Apple, Facebook, or Samsung spend on R&D. Disney and Warner/Discovery can claim they spend more, but their munitions are spent across multiple offerings/brands with different business models. Netflix's investment in glocal content is now paying off at home as well as abroad: US consumption of its non-English-language programming has grown 71% since 2019, and 97% of American Netflix subscribers have watched at least one non-English title in the past year. Read that last sentence again. This is a radical change to the American media landscape. Meanwhile, the number of Americans studying Korean on Duolingo has spiked this month. Should we really have a best "foreign" film award? Scott Galloway Per Ted Sarandos (the other CEO), "Squid Game" is likely to be Netflix's most successful series ever. That means two of its top three series will be internationally produced: "Squid Game" Season 1 (South Korea), "Bridgerton" Season 1 (US), and "Money Heist" Season 4 (Spain). Expect to see more subtitles moving forward.PreyWhile Netflix ascends, the previous prestige television king has lost its crown in a corporate swamp. HBO has demonstrated remarkable resilience, and the case study that still needs to be written is how its culture continues to do more with less. The firm's in late-stage puberty - it's now in its forties - and converting to a streaming platform was as awkward as it sounds.AT&T should never have owned it and, to its credit, recognized this and spun it to Discovery. But Discovery will probably inherit AT&T's legacy shareholder base, which likes dividends and may not have the stomach for the kinds of investments required to muscle up and glocalize. Discovery Inc.'s first-half revenue is up 12% from last year, to $3 billion. That sounds nice until you realize it's a fifth of Netflix's H1 revenue and is still dependent on advertising through linear channels. Put another way, AT&T shareholders may still be in a consensual hallucination that you can have ATT profits with NFLX growth. You can't, and the transition period will likely produce neither. The wild card may be CNN+ - rumor is they've signed up some remarkable talent. Yep, we're talking dragons, bounty hunters, scorching-hot dukes, and sublime chess protégés, all wrapped into one person. So excited for them. But I digress.A scenario: Discovery misses a quarter, as companies do, and the shareholder base realizes this is not the guy they thought they were marrying and bail. Stock takes a hit and invites a new, older suitor, as it's the only media firm with iconic assets that can be acquired - others are too big or have dual-class shareholder structures. The inamorato is from Philadelphia, rough around the edges … and rich. Comcast has the capital and the backbone (see above: Philadelphia) and likely already realizes its homegrown effort (Peacock) is fighting Panzers on horseback.Unleash the mouseDisney had the most impressive launch in OTT history, but its staggering potential is still unrecognized. The company should double down on the rundle (recurring revenue bundle) model and tie all its assets into a tiered subscription offering. Disney² members would get exclusive access to Disney parks, experiences, and merchandise, which today account for 34% of the company's total revenue. Disney is Lebron James in junior high school: It's got unmatched assets but is short on coordination.Our D² rundle vision included a new content feature: edutainment. We suggested the company launch an education product for kids in grades K-12, advice the company seemed to take halfheartedly onboard. In July, Disney licensed its characters to an Indian education company, Byju's, to launch a learning app in the US - a start, but I still think Disney should take matters into its own hands. The synergy of education with parks, merchandise, streaming, and singular IP is a subscription-based motherload the company hasn't tapped.Lieutenant acquirerI correctly predicted Amazon would add healthcare to its ever-accelerating flywheel. I could not have predicted it would pick up James Bond along the way. Amazon announced the acquisition of MGM Studios in May for $8.5 billion (subject to antitrust review), more than double what Disney paid for Marvel or Lucasfilm. Bob Iger's balance sheet used to be his superpower. But $386 billion in annual revenue and a $1.7 trillion market cap make Amazon a formidable force in M&A. It now leads all streamers as measured by number of titles. There are seven times as many movies on Prime Video than on Netflix. Scott Galloway Dark horseRoku has quietly gone door to door through the streaming neighborhood, picking up partnership deals with major distributors. It's now a key operating system for content. In the second quarter, the company registered an almost 20% increase in TV viewing hours year over year, compared to the slight hit other streaming platforms took when we began our slow return to a less-indoor life.The market has provided Roku with the capital to go hunting, even if its first kill is a newborn wildebeest that never learned to walk. Roku acquired Quibi's assets this year for a seventeenth of the funding raised to create its content. It still may have overpaid.The silent generalApple doesn't release any financial data for its streaming product, nor does it report its subscriber numbers. I don't see this as cause for concern. Apple TV+ is Roman Roy - it doesn't matter how badly it fucks up ... it's going to be successful, because Dad owns the railroad. "Ted Lasso" is a good, if not great show. If it was on Hulu, it would be a cult hit getting a fraction of the views and buzz. BTW, if someone showed you "Ted Lasso" a decade ago and told you either Apple or Nike had produced it, you'd have guessed Nike. Nike should and will get into the content game. But that's another post.In sum: Netflix goes global, Disney grows into its content body, HBO ends up with a third owner in as many years, Roku takes off its glasses and becomes the hot girl, the swoosh shows up with sports content, and Amazon and Apple continue to underwhelm but eventually land on their feet, as they were born into privilege.What's the key takeaway, the only thing I'm sure of? I can't wait for Season 3 of "Succession."Life is so rich,ScottRead the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nyt13 hr. 58 min. ago

Futures Jump On Profit Optimism As Oil Tops $85; Bitcoin Nears $60,000

Futures Jump On Profit Optimism As Oil Tops $85; Bitcoin Nears $60,000 One day after the S&P posted its biggest one-day surge since March, index futures extended this week’s gains, helped by a stellar bank earnings, while the latest labor market data and inflation eased stagflation fears for the time being. . The 10-year Treasury yield rose and the dollar was steady. Goldman Sachs reports on Friday. At 715 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 147 points, or 0.42%, S&P 500 e-minis were up 16.5 points, or 0.37%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 42.75 points, or 0.28%. Oil futures topped $85/bbl, jumping to their highest in three years amid an energy crunch that’s stoking inflationary pressures and prices for raw materials. A gauge of six industrial metals hit a record high on the London Metal Exchange.  Energy firms including Chevron and Exxon gained about half a percent each, tracking Brent crude prices that scaled the 3 year high. Solid earnings in the reporting season are tempering fears that rising costs and supply-chain snarls will hit corporate balance sheets and growth. At the same time, the wider debate about whether a stagflation-like backdrop looms remains unresolved. “We don’t sign up to the stagflation narrative that is doing the rounds,” said Hugh Gimber, global strategist at the perpetually optimistic J.P. Morgan Asset Management. “The economy is being supported by robust consumer balance sheets, rebounding business investment and a healthy labor market.” “After a choppy start to the week, equity markets appear to be leaning towards a narrative that companies can continue to grow profits, despite the combined pressures of higher energy prices and supply chain disruptions,” said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets in London. Bitcoin and the crypto sector jumped after Bloomberg reported late on Thursday that the Securities and Exchange Commission is poised to allow the first U.S. Bitcoin futures exchange-traded fund to begin trading in a watershed moment for the cryptocurrency industry. Bitcoin traded off session highs having tested $60k during Asian hours, but will likely rise to new all time highs shortly. Also overnight, Joe Biden signed a bill providing a short-term increase in the debt limit, averting the imminent threat of a financial calamity. But it only allows the Treasury Department to meets its financial obligations until roughly Dec. 3, so the can has been kicked for less than two months - brace for more bitter partisan battles in the coming weeks. This week’s move into rate-sensitive FAAMG growth names looked set to continue, with their shares inching up. Moderna rose 3.0% after a U.S. FDA panel voted to recommend booster shots of its COVID-19 vaccine for Americans aged 65 and older and high-risk people. Western Digital slipped 2.5% as Goldman Sachs downgraded the storage hardware maker’s stock to “neutral” from “buy”. Here are some of the key premarket movers on Friday morning: Virgin Galactic (SPCE US) shares slump as much as 23% in U.S. premarket trading as the firm is pushing the start of commercial flights further into next year after rescheduling a test flight, disappointing investors with the unexpected delay to its space tourism business plans Cryptocurrency-exposed stocks rise in U.S. premarket trading after a report that the Securities and Exchange Commission is poised to allow the first U.S. Bitcoin futures exchange-traded fund to begin trading.  Bit Digital (BTBT US) +6.7%, Riot Blockchain (RIOT US) +4.6%, Marathon Digital (MARA US) +3.6% Alcoa (AA US) shares jump 5.6% in thin volumes after co. reported profits that beat the average analyst estimate and said it will be paying a dividend to its shareholders Moderna (MRNA US) extends Thursday’s gains; Piper Sandler recommendation on Moderna Inc. to overweight from neutral, a day after co.’s Covid-19 booster got FDA nod for use in older, high-risk people Duck Creek Technologies (DCT US) shares fell 12% in Thursday postmarket trading after the software company projected 2022 revenue that fell short of the average analyst estimate 23andMe Holdings (ME US) soared 14% in Thursday postmarket trading after EMJ Capital founder Eric Jackson called the genetics testing company “the next Roku” on CNBC Corsair Gaming (CRSR US) shares fell 3.7% in post-market trading after it cut its net revenue forecast for the full year Early on Friday, China's PBOC broke its silence on Evergrande, saying risks to the financial system are controllable and unlikely to spread. Authorities and local governments are resolving the situation, central bank official Zou Lan said. The bank has asked lenders to keep credit to the real estate sector stable and orderly. In Europe, gains for banks, travel companies and carmakers outweighed losses for utilities and telecommunications industries, pushing the Stoxx Europe 600 Index up 0.3%. Telefonica fell 3.3%, the most in more than four months, after Barclays cut the Spanish company to underweight. Temenos and Pearson both slumped more than 10% after their business updates disappointed investors. Here are some of the biggest European movers today: Devoteam shares rise as much as 25% after its controlling shareholder, Castillon, increased its stake in the IT consulting group to 85% and launched an offer for the remaining capital. QinetiQ rises as much as 5.4% following a plunge in the defense tech company’s stock on Thursday. Investec upgraded its recommendation to buy and Berenberg said the shares now look oversold. Hugo Boss climbs as much as 4.4% to the highest level since September 2019 after the German apparel maker reported 3Q results that exceeded expectations. Jefferies (hold) noted the FY guidance hike also was bigger than expected. Mediclinic rises as much as 7.7% to highest since May 26 after 1H results, which Morgan Stanley says showed strong underlying operating performance with “solid metrics.” Temenos sinks as much as 14% after the company delivered a “mixed bag” with its 3Q results, according to Baader (sell). Weakness in Europe raises questions about the firm’s outlook for a recovery in the region, the broker said. Pearson declines as much as 12%, with analysts flagging weaker trading in its U.S. higher education courseware business in its in-line results. Earlier in the session, Asian stocks headed for their best week in more than a month amid a list of positive factors including robust U.S. earnings, strong results at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. and easing home-loan restrictions in China.  The MSCI Asia Pacific Index gained as much as 1.3%, pushing its advance this week to more than 1.5%, the most since the period ended Sept. 3. Technology shares provided much of the boost after chip giant TSMC announced fourth-quarter guidance that beat analysts’ expectations and said it will build a fabrication facility for specialty chips in Japan. Shares in China rose as people familiar with the matter said the nation loosened restrictions on home loans at some of its largest banks.  Conditions are good for tech and growth shares now long-term U.S. yields have fallen following inflation data this week, Shogo Maekawa, a strategist at JPMorgan Asset Management in Tokyo. “If data going forward are able to provide an impression that demand is strong too -- on top of a sense of relief from easing supply chain worries -- it’ll be a reason for share prices to take another leap higher.”  Asia’s benchmark equity gauge is still 10% below its record-high set in February, as analysts stay on the lookout for higher bond yields and the impact of supply-chain issues on profit margins.  Japanese stocks rose, with the Topix halting a three-week losing streak, after Wall Street rallied on robust corporate earnings. The Topix rose 1.9% to close at 2,023.93, while the Nikkei 225 advanced 1.8% to 29,068.63. Keyence Corp. contributed the most to the Topix’s gain, increasing 3.7%. Out of 2,180 shares in the index, 1,986 rose and 155 fell, while 39 were unchanged. For the week, the Topix climbed 3.2% and the Nikkei added 3.6%. Semiconductor equipment and material makers rose after TSMC said it will build a fabrication facility for specialty chips in Japan and plans to begin production there in late 2024.  U.S. index futures held gains during Asia trading hours. The contracts climbed overnight after a report showed applications for state unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest since March 2020.  “U.S. initial jobless claims fell sharply, and have returned to levels seen before the spread of the coronavirus,” said Nobuhiko Kuramochi, a market strategist at Mizuho Securities in Tokyo. “The fact that more people are returning to their jobs will help ease supply chain problems caused by the lack of workers.” Australian stocks also advanced, posting a second week of gains. The S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.7% to close at 7,362.00, with most sectors ending higher.  The benchmark added 0.6% since Monday, climbing for a second week. Miners capped their best week since July 16 with a 3% advance. Hub24 jumped on Friday after Evans & Partners upgraded the stock to positive from neutral. Pendal Group tumbled after it reported net outflows for the fourth quarter of A$2.3 billion. In New Zealand, the S&P/NZX 50 index fell 0.3% to 13,012.19 In rates, the U.S. 10-year Treasury yield rose over 3bps to 1.54%. Treasuries traded heavy across long-end of the curve into early U.S. session amid earning-driven gains for U.S. stock futures. Yields are higher by more than 3bp across long-end of the curve, 10- year by 2.8bp at about 1.54%, paring its first weekly decline since August; weekly move has been led by gilts and euro-zone bonds, also under pressure Friday, with U.K. 10-year yields higher by 3.3bp. Today's bear-steepening move pares the weekly bull-flattening trend. U.S. session features a packed economic data slate and speeches by Fed’s Bullard and Williams.   In FX, the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was little changed even as the greenback weakened against most of its Group-of-10 peers; the euro hovered around $1.16 while European and U.S. yields rose, led by the long end. Norway’s krone led G-10 gains as oil jumped to $85 a barrel for the first time since late 2018 amid the global energy crunch; the currency rallied by as much as 0.6% to 8.4015 per dollar, the strongest level since June. New Zealand’s dollar advanced to a three-week high as bets on RBNZ’s tightening momentum build ahead of Monday’s inflation data; the currency is outperforming all G-10 peers this week. The yen dropped to a three-year low as rising equities in Asia damped demand for low-yielding haven assets. China’s offshore yuan advanced to its highest in four months while short-term borrowing costs eased after the central bank added enough medium-term funds into the financial system to maintain liquidity at existing levels. In commodities, crude futures trade off best levels. WTI slips back below $82, Brent fades after testing $85. Spot gold slips back through Thursday’s lows near $1,786/oz. Base metals extend the week’s rally with LME nickel and zinc gaining over 2%. Today's retail sales report, due at 08:30 a.m. ET, is expected to show retail sales fell in September amid continued shortages of motor vehicles and other goods. The data will come against the backdrop of climbing oil prices, labor shortages and supply chain disruptions, factors that have rattled investors and have led to recent choppiness in the market. Looking at the day ahead now, and US data releases include September retail sales, the University of Michigan’s preliminary consumer sentiment index for October, and the Empire State manufacturing survey for October. Central bank speakers include the Fed’s Bullard and Williams, and earnings releases include Charles Schwab and Goldman Sachs. Market Snapshot S&P 500 futures up 0.3% to 4,443.75 STOXX Europe 600 up 0.4% to 467.66 German 10Y yield up 2.4 bps to -0.166% Euro little changed at $1.1608 MXAP up 1.3% to 198.33 MXAPJ up 1.2% to 650.02 Nikkei up 1.8% to 29,068.63 Topix up 1.9% to 2,023.93 Hang Seng Index up 1.5% to 25,330.96 Shanghai Composite up 0.4% to 3,572.37 Sensex up 0.9% to 61,305.95 Australia S&P/ASX 200 up 0.7% to 7,361.98 Kospi up 0.9% to 3,015.06 Brent Futures up 1.0% to $84.83/bbl Gold spot down 0.5% to $1,787.54 U.S. Dollar Index little changed at 93.92 Top Overnight News from Bloomberg China’s central bank broke its silence on the crisis at China Evergrande Group, saying risks to the financial system stemming from the developer’s struggles are “controllable” and unlikely to spread The ECB has a good track record when it comes to flexibly deploying its monetary instruments and will continue that approach even after the pandemic crisis, according to policy maker Pierre Wunsch Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance says fourth issuance of BTP Futura to start on Nov. 8 until Nov. 12, according to a statement The world’s largest digital currency rose about 3% to more than $59,000 on Friday -- taking this month’s rally to over 35% -- after Bloomberg News reported the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission looks poised to allow the country’s first futures-based cryptocurrency ETF Copper inventories available on the London Metal Exchange hit the lowest level since 1974, in a dramatic escalation of a squeeze on global supplies that’s sent spreads spiking and helped drive prices back above $10,000 a ton A more detailed look at global markets courtesy of Newsquawk Asia-Pac stocks traded higher amid tailwinds from the upbeat mood across global peers including the best day for the S&P 500 since March after strong US bank earnings, encouraging data and a decline in yields spurred risk appetite. The ASX 200 (+0.7%) was positive as the tech and mining sectors continued to spearhead the advances in the index in which the former took impetus from Wall St where the softer yield environment was conducive to the outperformance in tech, although mining giant Rio Tinto was among the laggards following weaker quarterly production results. The Nikkei 225 (+1.8%) was buoyed as exporters benefitted from the JPY-risk dynamic but with Fast Retailing failing to join in on the spoils despite an 88% jump in full-year net as its profit guidance underwhelmed with just 3% growth seen for the year ahead, while Taiwan's TAIEX (+2.2%) surged with the spotlight on TSMC earnings which reached a record high amid the chip crunch and with the Co. to also build a factory in Japan that could receive JPY 500bln of support from the Japanese government. The Hang Seng (+1.5%) and Shanghai Comp. (+0.4%) were initially indecisive amid the overhang from lingering developer default concerns although found some mild support from reports that China is to relax banks' mortgage limits through the rest of 2021. Focus was also on the PBoC which announced a CNY 500bln MLF operation, although this just matched the amount maturing this month and there are mixed views regarding prospects of a looming RRR cut with ANZ Bank's senior China strategist recently suggesting the potential for a 50bps cut in RRR or targeted MLF as early as today, although a recent poll showed analysts had pushed back their calls for a RRR cut from Q4 2021 to Q1 2022. Finally, 10yr JGBs marginally pulled back from this week’s advances after hitting resistance at the 151.50 level, with demand hampered amid the firm gains in Japanese stocks and the lack of BoJ purchases in the market today. Top Asian News Hong Kong Probes Going Concern Reporting of Evergrande U.S. Futures Hold Gains as Oil Hits 3-Year High: Markets Wrap Toyota Cuts November Outlook by 15% on Parts Shortage, Covid Yango Group Wires Repayment Fund for Onshore Bond Due Oct. 22 Bourses in Europe have held onto the modest gains seen at the cash open (Euro Stoxx 50 +0.4%; Stoxx 600 +0.3%), but the region is off its best levels with the upside momentum somewhat faded heading into the US open, and amidst a lack of fresh newsflow. US equity futures have remained in positive territory, although the latest leg lower in bonds has further capped the tech-laden NQ (+0.2%), which underperforms vs the ES (+0.3%), YM (+0.3%) and RTY (+0.7%), with traders on the lookout for another set of earnings, headlined by Goldman Sachs at 12:25BST/07:25EDT. Back to Europe, bourses see broad-based gains, whilst sectors are mostly in the green with clear underperformance experienced in defensives, with Telecoms, Utilities, Healthcare and Staples at the foot of the bunch. On the flipside, Banks reap rewards from the uptick in yields, closely followed by Travel & Leisure, Autos & Parts and Retail. Renault (+4%) drives the gains in Autos after unveiling a prototype version of the Renault Master van that will go on sale next year. Travel & Leisure is bolstered by the ongoing reopening trade with potential tailwinds heading into the Christmas period. Retail meanwhile is boosted by Hugo Boss (+1.8%) topping forecasts and upgrading its guidance. Top European News Autumn Heat May Curb European Gas Demand, Prices Next Week Bollore Looking for Buyers for Africa Logistics Ops: Le Monde U.K. Offers Foreign Butchers Visas After 6,000 Pigs Culled Europe’s Car-Sales Crash Points to Worse Year Than Poor 2020 In FX, the Greenback was already losing momentum after a relatively tame bounce on the back of Thursday’s upbeat US initial claims data, and the index failed to sustain its recovery to retest intraday highs or remain above 94.000 on a closing basis. However, the Buck did reclaim some significant and psychological levels against G10, EM currencies and Gold that was relishing the benign yield environment and the last DXY price was marginally better than the 21 DMA from an encouraging technical standpoint. Nevertheless, the Dollar remains weaker vs most majors and in need of further impetus that may come via retail sales, NY Fed manufacturing and/or preliminary Michigan Sentiment before the spotlight switches to today’s Fed speakers featuring arch hawk Bullard and the more neutral Williams. GBP/NZD/NOK - Sterling has refuelled and recharged regardless of the ongoing UK-EU rift over NI Protocol, though perhaps in part due to the fact that concessions from Brussels are believed to have been greeted with welcome surprise by some UK Ministers. Cable has reclaimed 1.3700+ status, breached the 50 DMA (at 1.3716 today) and yesterday’s best to set a marginal new w-t-d peak around 1.3739, while Eur/Gbp is edging closer to 0.8450 having clearly overcome resistance at 1.1800 in the reciprocal cross. Similarly, the Kiwi continues to derive impetus from the softer Greenback and Aud/Nzd flows as Nzd/Usd extends beyond 0.7050 and the Antipodean cross inches nearer 1.0500 from 1.0600+ highs. Elsewhere, the Norwegian Crown is aiming to add 9.7500 to its list of achievements relative to the Euro with a boost from Brent topping Usd 85/brl at one stage and a wider trade surplus. CAD - The Loonie is also profiting from oil as WTI crude rebounds through Usd 82 and pulling further away from 1.5 bn option expiry interest between 1.2415-00 in the process, with Usd/Cad towards the base of 1.2337-82 parameters. EUR/AUD/CHF/SEK - All narrowly mixed and rangy vs the Greenback, or Euro in the case of the latter, as Eur/Usd continues to straddle 1.1600, Aud/Usd churn on the 0.7400 handle, the Franc meander from 0.9219 to 0.9246 and Eur/Sek skirt 10.0000 having dipped below the round number briefly on Thursday. In commodities, WTI and Brent front month futures remain on a firmer footing, aided up the overall constructive risk appetite coupled with some bullish technical developments, as WTI Nov surpassed USD 82/bbl (vs 81.39/bbl low) and Brent Dec briefly topped USD 85/bbl (vs 84.16/bbl low). There has been little in terms of fresh fundamental catalysts to drive the price action, although Russia's Gazprom Neft CEO hit the wires earlier and suggested that reserve production capacity could meet the increase in oil demand, whilst a seasonal decline in oil consumption is possible and the oil market will stabilise in the nearest future. On the Iranian JCPOA front, Iran said it is finalising steps to completing its negotiating team but they are absolutely decided to go back to Vienna discussions and conclude the negotiations, WSJ's Norman. The crude complex seems to have (for now) overlooked reports that the White House is engaged in diplomacy" with OPEC+ members regarding output. UK nat gas prices were higher as European players entered the fray, but prices have since waned off best levels after Russian Deputy PM Novak suggested that gas production in Russia is running at maximum capacity. Elsewhere, spot gold has been trundling amid yield-play despite lower despite the Buck being on the softer side of today’s range. Spot gold failed to hold onto USD 1,800/oz status yesterday and has subsequently retreated below its 200 DMA (1,794/oz) and makes its way towards the 50 DMA (1,776/oz). LME copper prices are on a firmer footing with prices back above USD 10,000/t – supported by technicals and the overall risk tone, although participants are cognizant of potential Chinese state reserves releases. Conversely, Dalian iron ore futures fell for a third straight session, with Rio Tinto also cutting its 2021 iron ore shipment forecasts due to dampened Chinese demand. US Event Calendar 8:30am: Sept. Retail Sales Advance MoM, est. -0.2%, prior 0.7% 8:30am: Sept. Retail Sales Ex Auto MoM, est. 0.5%, prior 1.8% 8:30am: Sept. Retail Sales Control Group, est. 0.5%, prior 2.5% 8:30am: Sept. Retail Sales Ex Auto and Gas, est. 0.3%, prior 2.0% 8:30am: Oct. Empire Manufacturing, est. 25.0, prior 34.3 8:30am: Sept. Import Price Index MoM, est. 0.6%, prior -0.3%; YoY, est. 9.4%, prior 9.0% 8:30am: Sept. Export Price Index MoM, est. 0.7%, prior 0.4%; YoY, prior 16.8% 10am: Aug. Business Inventories, est. 0.6%, prior 0.5% 10am: Oct. U. of Mich. 1 Yr Inflation, est. 4.7%, prior 4.6%; 5-10 Yr Inflation, prior 3.0% 10am: Oct. U. of Mich. Sentiment, est. 73.1, prior 72.8 10am: Oct. U. of Mich. Current Conditions, est. 81.2, prior 80.1 10am: Oct. U. of Mich. Expectations, est. 69.1, prior 68.1 DB's Jim Ried concludes the overnight wrap A few people asked me what I thought of James Bond. I can’t say without spoilers so if anyone wants my two sentence review I will cut and paste it to all who care and reply! At my age I was just impressed I sat for over three hours (including trailers) without needing a comfort break. By the time you email I will have also listened to the new Adele single which dropped at midnight so happy to include that review as well for free. While we’re on the subject of music, risk assets feel a bit like the most famous Chumbawamba song at the moment. They get knocked down and they get up again. Come to think about it that’s like James Bond too. Yesterday was a strong day with the S&P 500 (+1.71%) moving back to within 2.2% of its all-time closing high from last month. If they can survive all that has been thrown at them of late then one wonders where they’d have been without any of it. The strong session came about thanks to decent corporate earnings releases, a mini-collapse in real yields, positive data on US jobless claims, as well as a further fall in global Covid-19 cases that leaves them on track for an 8th consecutive weekly decline. However, inflation remained very much on investors’ radars, with a range of key commodities taking another leg higher, even as US data on producer prices was weaker than expected. Starting with the good news, the equity strength was across the board with the S&P 500 experiencing its best daily performance since March, whilst Europe’s STOXX 600 (+1.20%) also put in solid gains. It was an incredibly broad-based move higher, with every sector group in both indices rising on the day, with a remarkable 479 gainers in the S&P 500, which is the second-highest number we’ve seen over the last 18 months. Every one of the 24 S&P 500 industry groups rose, led by cyclicals such as semiconductors (+3.12%), transportation (+2.51%) and materials (+2.43%). A positive start to the Q3 earnings season buoyed sentiment, as a number of US banks (+1.45%) reported yesterday, all of whom beat analyst estimates. In fact, of the nine S&P 500 firms to report yesterday, eight outperformed analyst expectations. Weighing in on recent macro themes, Bank of America Chief, Brian Moynihan, noted that the current bout of inflation is “clearly not temporary”, but also that he expects consumer demand to remain robust and that supply chains will have to adjust. I’m sure we’ll hear more from executives as earnings season continues today. Alongside those earnings releases, yesterday saw much better than expected data on the US labour market, which makes a change from last week’s underwhelming jobs report that showed the slowest growth in nonfarm payrolls so far this year. In terms of the details, the weekly initial jobless claims for the week through October 9, which is one of the most timely indicators we get, fell to a post-pandemic low of 293k (vs. 320k expected). That also saw the 4-week moving average hit a post-pandemic low of 334.25k, just as the continuing claims number for the week through October 2 hit a post-pandemic low of 2.593m (vs. 2.670m expected). We should get some more data on the state of the US recovery today, including September retail sales, alongside the University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment index for October. That optimism has fed through into Asian markets overnight, with the Nikkei (+1.43%), the Hang Seng (+0.86%), the Shanghai Comp (+0.29%) and the KOSPI (+0.93%) all moving higher. That came as Bloomberg reported that China would loosen restrictions on home loans amidst the concerns about Evergrande. And we also got formal confirmation that President Biden had signed the debt-limit increase that the House had passed on Tuesday, which extends the ceiling until around December 3. Equity futures are pointing to further advances in the US and Europe later on, with those on the S&P 500 (+0.30%) and the STOXX 50 (+0.35%) both moving higher. Even with the brighter news, inflation concerns are still very much with us however, and yesterday in fact saw Bloomberg’s Commodity Spot Index (+1.16%) advance to yet another record high, exceeding the previous peak from early last week. That was partly down to the continued rise in oil prices, with WTI (+1.08%) closing at $81.31/bbl, its highest level since 2014, just as Brent Crude (+0.99%) hit a post-2018 high of $84.00/bbl. Both have posted further gains this morning of +0.58% and +0.61% respectively. Those moves went alongside further rises in natural gas prices, which rose for a 3rd consecutive session, albeit they’re still beneath their peak from earlier in the month, as futures in Europe (+9.14%), the US (+1.74%) and the UK (+9.26%) all moved higher. And that rise in Chinese coal futures we’ve been mentioning also continued, with their rise today currently standing at +13.86%, which brings their gains over the week as a whole to +39.02% so far. As well as energy, industrial metals were another segment where the recent rally showed no sign of abating yesterday. On the London metal exchange, a number of multi-year milestones were achieved, with aluminum prices (+1.60%) up to their highest levels since 2008, just as zinc prices (+3.73%) closed at their highest level since 2018. Separately, copper prices (+2.56%) hit a 4-month high, and other winners yesterday included iron ore futures in Singapore (+1.16%), as well as nickel (+1.99%) and lead (+2.43%) prices in London. With all this momentum behind commodities, inflation expectations posted further advances yesterday. Indeed, the 10yr US Breakeven closed +1.0bps higher at 2.536%, which is just 3bps shy of its closing peak back in May that marked its highest level since 2013. And those moves came in spite of US producer price data that came in weaker than expected, with the monthly increase in September at +0.5% (vs. +0.6% expected). That was the smallest rise so far this year, though that still sent the year-on-year number up to +8.6% (vs. +8.7% expected). That rise in inflation expectations was echoed in Europe too, with the 10yr UK breakeven (+5.6bps) closing at its highest level since 2008, whilst its German counterpart also posted a modest +0.7bps rise. In spite of the rise in inflation expectations, sovereign bonds posted gains across the board as the moves were outweighed by the impact of lower real rates. By the end of yesterday’s session, yields on 10yr Treasuries were down -2.6bps to 1.527%, which came as the 10yr real yield moved back beneath -1% for the first time in almost a month. Likewise in Europe, yields pushed lower throughout the session, with those on 10yr bunds (-6.3bps), OATs (-6.2bps) and BTPs (-7.1bps) all moving aggressively lower. To the day ahead now, and US data releases include September retail sales, the University of Michigan’s preliminary consumer sentiment index for October, and the Empire State manufacturing survey for October. Central bank speakers include the Fed’s Bullard and Williams, and earnings releases include Charles Schwab and Goldman Sachs. Tyler Durden Fri, 10/15/2021 - 07:50.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nytOct 15th, 2021

NATO"s Plans To Hack Your Brain

NATO's Plans To Hack Your Brain Authored by Ben Norton via, Western governments in the NATO military alliance are developing tactics of “cognitive warfare,” using the supposed threats of China and Russia to justify waging a “battle for your brain” in the “human domain,” to “make everyone a weapon.” NATO is developing new forms of warfare to wage a “battle for the brain,” as the military alliance put it. The US-led NATO military cartel has tested novel modes of hybrid warfare against its self-declared adversaries, including economic warfare, cyber warfare, information warfare, and psychological warfare. Now, NATO is spinning out an entirely new kind of combat it has branded cognitive warfare. Described as the “weaponization of brain sciences,” the new method involves “hacking the individual” by exploiting “the vulnerabilities of the human brain” in order to implement more sophisticated “social engineering.” Until recently, NATO had divided war into five different operational domains: air, land, sea, space, and cyber. But with its development of cognitive warfare strategies, the military alliance is discussing a new, sixth level: the “human domain.” A 2020 NATO-sponsored study of this new form of warfare clearly explained, “While actions taken in the five domains are executed in order to have an effect on the human domain, cognitive warfare’s objective is to make everyone a weapon.” “The brain will be the battlefield of the 21st century,” the report stressed. “Humans are the contested domain,” and “future conflicts will likely occur amongst the people digitally first and physically thereafter in proximity to hubs of political and economic power.” The 2020 NATO-sponsored study on cognitive warfare While the NATO-backed study insisted that much of its research on cognitive warfare is designed for defensive purposes, it also conceded that the military alliance is developing offensive tactics, stating, “The human is very often the main vulnerability and it should be acknowledged in order to protect NATO’s human capital but also to be able to benefit from our adversaries’s vulnerabilities.” In a chilling disclosure, the report said explicitly that “the objective of Cognitive Warfare is to harm societies and not only the military.” With entire civilian populations in NATO’s crosshairs, the report emphasized that Western militaries must work more closely with academia to weaponize social sciences and human sciences and help the alliance develop its cognitive warfare capacities. The study described this phenomenon as “the militarization of brain science.” But it appears clear that NATO’s development of cognitive warfare will lead to a militarization of all aspects of human society and psychology, from the most intimate of social relationships to the mind itself. Such all-encompassing militarization of society is reflected in the paranoid tone of the NATO-sponsored report, which warned of “an embedded fifth column, where everyone, unbeknownst to him or her, is behaving according to the plans of one of our competitors.” The study makes it clear that those “competitors” purportedly exploiting the consciousness of Western dissidents are China and Russia. In other words, this document shows that figures in the NATO military cartel increasingly see their own domestic population as a threat, fearing civilians to be potential Chinese or Russian sleeper cells, dastardly “fifth columns” that challenge the stability of “Western liberal democracies.” NATO’s development of novel forms of hybrid warfare come at a time when member states’ military campaigns are targeting domestic populations on an unprecedented level. The Ottawa Citizen reported this September that the Canadian military’s Joint Operations Command took advantage of the Covid-19 pandemic to wage an information war against its own domestic population, testing out propaganda tactics on Canadian civilians. Internal NATO-sponsored reports suggest that this disclosure is just scratching the surface of a wave of new unconventional warfare techniques that Western militaries are employing around the world. Canada hosts ‘NATO Innovation Challenge’ on cognitive warfare Twice each year, NATO holds a “pitch-style event” that it brand as an “Innovation Challenge.” These campaigns – one hosted in the Spring and the other in the Fall, by alternating member states – call on private companies, organizations, and researchers to help develop new tactics and technologies for the military alliance. The shark tank-like challenges reflect the predominant influence of neoliberal ideology within NATO, as participants mobilize the free market, public-private partnerships, and the promise of cash prizes to advance the agenda of the military-industrial complex. NATO’s Fall 2021 Innovation Challenge is hosted by Canada, and is titled “The invisible threat: Tools for countering cognitive warfare.” “Cognitive warfare seeks to change not only what people think, but also how they act,” the Canadian government wrote in its official statement on the challenge. “Attacks against the cognitive domain involve the integration of cyber, disinformation/misinformation, psychological, and social-engineering capabilities.” Ottawa’s press release continued: “Cognitive warfare positions the mind as a battle space and contested domain. Its objective is to sow dissonance, instigate conflicting narratives, polarize opinion, and radicalize groups. Cognitive warfare can motivate people to act in ways that can disrupt or fragment an otherwise cohesive society.” NATO-backed Canadian military officials discuss cognitive warfare in panel event An advocacy group called the NATO Association of Canada has mobilized to support this Innovation Challenge, working closely with military contractors to attract the private sector to invest in further research on behalf of NATO – and its own bottom line. While the NATO Association of Canada (NAOC) is technically an independent NGO, its mission is to promote NATO, and the organization boasts on its website, “The NAOC has strong ties with the Government of Canada including Global Affairs Canada and the Department of National Defence.” As part of its efforts to promote Canada’s NATO Innovation Challenge, the NAOC held a panel discussion on cognitive warfare on October 5. The researcher who wrote the definitive 2020 NATO-sponsored study on cognitive warfare, François du Cluzel, participated in the event, alongside NATO-backed Canadian military officers. The October 5 panel on cognitive warfare, hosted by the NATO Association of Canada The panel was overseen by Robert Baines, president of the NATO Association of Canada. It was moderated by Garrick Ngai, a marketing executive in the weapons industry who serves as an adviser to the Canadian Department of National Defense and vice president and director of the NAOC. Baines opened the event noting that participants would discuss “cognitive warfare and new domain of competition, where state and non-state actors aim to influence what people think and how they act.” The NAOC president also happily noted the lucrative “opportunities for Canadian companies” that this NATO Innovation Challenge promised. NATO researcher describes cognitive warfare as ‘ways of harming the brain’ The October 5 panel kicked off with François du Cluzel, a former French military officer who in 2013 helped to create the NATO Innovation Hub (iHub), which he has since then managed from its base in Norfolk, Virginia. Although the iHub insists on its website, for legal reasons, that the “opinions expressed on this platform don’t constitute NATO or any other organization points of view,” the organization is sponsored by the Allied Command Transformation (ACT), described as “one of two Strategic Commands at the head of NATO’s military command structure.” The Innovation Hub, therefore, acts as a kind of in-house NATO research center or think tank. Its research is not necessarily official NATO policy, but it is directly supported and overseen by NATO. In 2020, NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT) tasked du Cluzel, as manager of the iHub, to conduct a six-month study on cognitive warfare. Du Cluzel summarized his research in the panel this October. He initiated his remarks noting that cognitive warfare “right now is one of the hottest topics for NATO,” and “has become a recurring term in military terminology in recent years.” Although French, Du Cluzel emphasized that cognitive warfare strategy “is being currently developed by my command here in Norfolk, USA.” The NATO Innovation Hub manager spoke with a PowerPoint presentation, and opened with a provocative slide that described cognitive warfare as “A Battle for the Brain.” “Cognitive warfare is a new concept that starts in the information sphere, that is a kind of hybrid warfare,” du Cluzel said. “It starts with hyper-connectivity. Everyone has a cell phone,” he continued. “It starts with information because information is, if I may say, the fuel of cognitive warfare. But it goes way beyond solely information, which is a standalone operation – information warfare is a standalone operation.” Cognitive warfare overlaps with Big Tech corporations and mass surveillance, because “it’s all about leveraging the big data,” du Cluzel explained. “We produce data everywhere we go. Every minute, every second we go, we go online. And this is extremely easy to leverage those data in order to better know you and use that knowledge to change the way you think.” Naturally, the NATO researcher claimed foreign “adversaries” are the supposed aggressors employing cognitive warfare. But at the same time, he made it clear that the Western military alliance is developing its own tactics. Du Cluzel defined cognitive warfare as the “art of using technologies to alter the cognition of human targets.” Those technologies, he noted, incorporate the fields of NBIC – nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology, and cognitive science. All together, “it makes a kind of very dangerous cocktail that can further manipulate the brain,” he said. Du Cluzel went on to explain that the exotic new method of attack “goes well beyond” information warfare or psychological operations (psyops). “Cognitive warfare is not only a fight against what we think, but it’s rather a fight against the way we think, if we can change the way people think,” he said. “It’s much more powerful and it goes way beyond the information [warfare] and psyops.” De Cluzel continued: “It’s crucial to understand that it’s a game on our cognition, on the way our brain processes information and turns it into knowledge, rather than solely a game on information or on psychological aspects of our brains. It’s not only an action against what we think, but also an action against the way we think, the way we process information and turn it into knowledge.” “In other words, cognitive warfare is not just another word, another name for information warfare. It is a war on our individual processor, our brain.” The NATO researcher stressed that “this is extremely important for us in the military,” because “it has the potential, by developing new weapons and ways of harming the brain, it has the potential to engage neuroscience and technology in many, many different approaches to influence human ecology… because you all know that it’s very easy to turn a civilian technology into a military one.” As for who the targets of cognitive warfare could be, du Cluzel revealed that anyone and everyone is on the table. “Cognitive warfare has universal reach, from starting with the individual to states and multinational organizations,” he said. “Its field of action is global and aim to seize control of the human being, civilian as well as military.” And the private sector has a financial interest in advancing cognitive warfare research, he noted: “The massive worldwide investments made in neurosciences suggests that the cognitive domain will probably one of the battlefields of the future.” The development of cognitive warfare totally transforms military conflict as we know it, du Cluzel said, adding “a third major combat dimension to the modern battlefield: to the physical and informational dimension is now added a cognitive dimension.” This “creates a new space of competition beyond what is called the five domains of operations – or land, sea, air, cyber, and space domains. Warfare in the cognitive arena mobilizes a wider range of battle spaces than solely the physical and information dimensions can do.” In short, humans themselves are the new contested domain in this novel mode of hybrid warfare, alongside land, sea, air, cyber, and outer space. NATO’s cognitive warfare study warns of “embedded fifth column” The study that NATO Innovation Hub manager François du Cluzel conducted, from June to November 2020, was sponsored by the military cartel’s Allied Command Transformation, and published as a 45-page report in January 2021 (PDF). The chilling document shows how contemporary warfare has reached a kind of dystopian stage, once imaginable only in science fiction. “The nature of warfare has changed,” the report emphasized. “The majority of current conflicts remain below the threshold of the traditionally accepted definition of warfare, but new forms of warfare have emerged such as Cognitive Warfare (CW), while the human mind is now being considered as a new domain of war.” For NATO, research on cognitive warfare is not just defensive; it is very much offensive as well. “Developing capabilities to harm the cognitive abilities of opponents will be a necessity,” du Cluzel’s report stated clearly. “In other words, NATO will need to get the ability to safeguard her decision making process and disrupt the adversary’s one.” And anyone could be a target of these cognitive warfare operations: “Any user of modern information technologies is a potential target. It targets the whole of a nation’s human capital,” the report ominously added. “As well as the potential execution of a cognitive war to complement to a military conflict, it can also be conducted alone, without any link to an engagement of the armed forces,” the study went on. “Moreover, cognitive warfare is potentially endless since there can be no peace treaty or surrender for this type of conflict.” Just as this new mode of battle has no geographic borders, it also has no time limit: “This battlefield is global via the internet. With no beginning and no end, this conquest knows no respite, punctuated by notifications from our smartphones, anywhere, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.” The NATO-sponsored study noted that “some NATO Nations have already acknowledged that neuroscientific techniques and technologies have high potential for operational use in a variety of security, defense and intelligence enterprises.” It spoke of breakthroughs in “neuroscientific methods and technologies” (neuroS/T), and said “uses of research findings and products to directly facilitate the performance of combatants, the integration of human machine interfaces to optimise combat capabilities of semi autonomous vehicles (e.g., drones), and development of biological and chemical weapons (i.e., neuroweapons).” The Pentagon is among the primary institutions advancing this novel research, as the report highlighted: “Although a number of nations have pursued, and are currently pursuing neuroscientific research and development for military purposes, perhaps the most proactive efforts in this regard have been conducted by the United States Department of Defense; with most notable and rapidly maturing research and development conducted by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA).” Military uses of neuroS/T research, the study indicated, include intelligence gathering, training, “optimising performance and resilience in combat and military support personnel,” and of course “direct weaponisation of neuroscience and neurotechnology.” This weaponization of neuroS/T can and will be fatal, the NATO-sponsored study was clear to point out. The research can “be utilised to mitigate aggression and foster cognitions and emotions of affiliation or passivity; induce morbidity, disability or suffering; and ‘neutralise’ potential opponents or incur mortality” – in other words, to maim and kill people. The 2020 NATO-sponsored study on cognitive warfare The report quoted US Major General Robert H. Scales, who summarized NATO’s new combat philosophy: “Victory will be defined more in terms of capturing the psycho-cultural rather than the geographical high ground.” And as NATO develops tactics of cognitive warfare to “capture the psycho-cultural,” it is also increasingly weaponizing various scientific fields. The study spoke of “the crucible of data sciences and human sciences,” and stressed that “the combination of Social Sciences and System Engineering will be key in helping military analysts to improve the production of intelligence.” “If kinetic power cannot defeat the enemy,” it said, “psychology and related behavioural and social sciences stand to fill the void.” “Leveraging social sciences will be central to the development of the Human Domain Plan of Operations,” the report went on. “It will support the combat operations by providing potential courses of action for the whole surrounding Human Environment including enemy forces, but also determining key human elements such as the Cognitive center of gravity, the desired behaviour as the end state.” All academic disciplines will be implicated in cognitive warfare, not just the hard sciences. “Within the military, expertise on anthropology, ethnography, history, psychology among other areas will be more than ever required to cooperate with the military,” the NATO-sponsored study stated. The report nears its conclusion with an eerie quote: “Today’s progresses in nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology and cognitive science (NBIC), boosted by the seemingly unstoppable march of a triumphant troika made of Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and civilisational ‘digital addiction’ have created a much more ominous prospect: an embedded fifth column, where everyone, unbeknownst to him or her, is behaving according to the plans of one of our competitors.” “The modern concept of war is not about weapons but about influence,” it posited. “Victory in the long run will remain solely dependent on the ability to influence, affect, change or impact the cognitive domain.” The NATO-sponsored study then closed with a final paragraph that makes it clear beyond doubt that the Western military alliance’s ultimate goal is not only physical control of the planet, but also control over people’s minds: “Cognitive warfare may well be the missing element that allows the transition from military victory on the battlefield to lasting political success. The human domain might well be the decisive domain, wherein multi-domain operations achieve the commander’s effect. The five first domains can give tactical and operational victories; only the human domain can achieve the final and full victory.” Canadian Special Operations officer emphasizes importance of cognitive warfare When François du Cluzel, the NATO researcher who conducted the study on cognitive warfare, concluded his remarks in the October 5 NATO Association of Canada panel, he was followed by Andy Bonvie, a commanding officer at the Canadian Special Operations Training Centre. With more than 30 years of experience with the Canadian Armed Forces, Bonvie spoke of how Western militaries are making use of research by du Cluzel and others, and incorporating novel cognitive warfare techniques into their combat activities. “Cognitive warfare is a new type of hybrid warfare for us,” Bonvie said. “And it means that we need to look at the traditional thresholds of conflict and how the things that are being done are really below those thresholds of conflict, cognitive attacks, and non-kinetic forms and non-combative threats to us. We need to understand these attacks better and adjust their actions and our training accordingly to be able to operate in these different environments.” Although he portrayed NATO’s actions as “defensive,” claiming “adversaries” were using cognitive warfare against them, Bonvie was unambiguous about the fact that Western militaries are developing these tecniques themselves, to maintain a “tactical advantage.” “We cannot lose the tactical advantage for our troops that we’re placing forward as it spans not only tactically, but strategically,” he said. “Some of those different capabilities that we have that we enjoy all of a sudden could be pivoted to be used against us. So we have to better understand how quickly our adversaries adapt to things, and then be able to predict where they’re going in the future, to help us be and maintain the tactical advantage for our troops moving forward.” ‘Cognitive warfare is the most advanced form of manipulation seen to date’ Marie-Pierre Raymond, a retired Canadian lieutenant colonel who currently serves as a “defence scientist and innovation portfolio manager” for the Canadian Armed Forces’ Innovation for Defence Excellence and Security Program, also joined the October 5 panel. “Long gone are the days when war was fought to acquire more land,” Raymond said. “Now the new objective is to change the adversaries’ ideologies, which makes the brain the center of gravity of the human. And it makes the human the contested domain, and the mind becomes the battlefield.” “When we speak about hybrid threats, cognitive warfare is the most advanced form of manipulation seen to date,” she added, noting that it aims to influence individuals’ decision-making and “to influence a group of a group of individuals on their behavior, with the aim of gaining a tactical or strategic advantage.” Raymond noted that cognitive warfare also heavily overlaps with artificial intelligence, big data, and social media, and reflects “the rapid evolution of neurosciences as a tool of war.” Raymond is helping to oversee the NATO Fall 2021 Innovation Challenge on behalf of Canada’s Department of National Defence, which delegated management responsibilities to the military’s Innovation for Defence Excellence and Security (IDEaS) Program, where she works. In highly technical jargon, Raymond indicated that the cognitive warfare program is not solely defensive, but also offensive: “This challenge is calling for a solution that will support NATO’s nascent human domain and jump-start the development of a cognition ecosystem within the alliance, and that will support the development of new applications, new systems, new tools and concepts leading to concrete action in the cognitive domain.” She emphasized that this “will require sustained cooperation between allies, innovators, and researchers to enable our troops to fight and win in the cognitive domain. This is what we are hoping to emerge from this call to innovators and researchers.” To inspire corporate interest in the NATO Innovation Challenge, Raymond enticed, “Applicants will receive national and international exposure and cash prizes for the best solution.” She then added tantalizingly, “This could also benefit the applicants by potentially providing them access to a market of 30 nations.” Canadian military officer calls on corporations to invest in NATO’s cognitive warfare research The other institution that is managing the Fall 2021 NATO Innovation Challenge on behalf of Canada’s Department of National Defense is the Special Operations Forces Command (CANSOFCOM). A Canadian military officer who works with CANSOFCOM, Shekhar Gothi, was the final panelist in the October 5 NATO Association of Canada event. Gothi serves as CANSOFCOM’s “innovation officer” for Southern Ontario. He concluded the event appealing for corporate investment in NATO’s cognitive warfare research. The bi-annual Innovation Challenge is “part of the NATO battle rhythm,” Gothi declared enthusiastically. He noted that, in the spring of 2021, Portugal held a NATO Innovation Challenge focused on warfare in outer space. In spring 2020, the Netherlands hosted a NATO Innovation Challenge focused on Covid-19. Gothi reassured corporate investors that NATO will bend over backward to defend their bottom lines: “I can assure everyone that the NATO innovation challenge indicates that all innovators will maintain complete control of their intellectual property. So NATO won’t take control of that. Neither will Canada. Innovators will maintain their control over their IP.” The comment was a fitting conclusion to the panel, affirming that NATO and its allies in the military-industrial complex not only seek to dominate the world and the humans that inhabit it with unsettling cognitive warfare techniques, but to also ensure that corporations and their shareholders continue to profit from these imperial endeavors. Tyler Durden Fri, 10/15/2021 - 03:30.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytOct 15th, 2021

Merck is set to make billions off a COVID-19 pill that could change the pandemic. Here"s why some countries will pay more than others.

Merck's antiviral has not yet been authorized, but the company already has plans to distribute the coronavirus pills globally. Molnupiravir is an experimental oral antiviral developed by Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics that could treat COVID-19. Merck Merck's COVID-19 pill holds tremendous promise in fighting the pandemic. Industry analysts expect Merck to make billions off the not-yet-authorized drug. Some countries will be paying $12 per pill, while the US agreed to pay $712 per treatment course. Merck is walking a tightrope with its COVID-19 pill, expecting to reap billions in revenue while still making the medicine affordable to the world.The pharmaceutical giant's antiviral program became the first pill to succeed in a late-stage study. The drug, called molnupiravir, halved the risk of hospitalization and death compared to a placebo for people with mild to moderate COVID-19 who are at high risk of severe illness.Merck now finds itself in a position to make molnupiravir one of its most profitable drugs, with industry analysts forecasting the company will make about $22 billion in revenue from the drug through 2030. At the same time, to be an effective tool in the pandemic, it'll have to work to make it accessible to the people who need it the most around the world.Global inequity has been a hallmark of the world's COVID-19 response. Moderna, for instance, has faced criticism that it has prioritized rich countries in making supply deals for its coronavirus vaccine. More than 50 countries and territories, mainly in Africa and the Middle East, have vaccinated less than 10% of their population as of the end of September. Merck hopes to make billions while not leaving behind the most vulnerable populations. While the US government is paying $712 per treatment course, Merck is allowing generic manufacturers to make its pill for lower-income markets, where they will likely charge a fraction of that cost. Merck has reached agreements with eight generic drug companies, allowing each of them to sell molnupiravir in more than 100 low- and middle-income countries. These generic companies will compete on price, with one report saying they are expected to charge about $12 to $15 per treatment course.Drug companies have enlisted generic manufacturers before with HIV and hepatitis C medicines, typically after public pressure. For its COVID-19 pill, Merck has set up these partnerships ahead of time, preemptively giving up the monopoly control of the drug that pharma companies so aggressively protect under normal circumstances. "We've been planning to put this strategy in place from the very beginning," Paul Schaper, Merck's executive director of global pharmaceutical public policy, told Insider. Even some drug-pricing advocates applaud Merck's strategy."Merck is among the better actors in the pandemic compared to other companies," said Jamie Love, head of the drug-access advocacy group Knowledge Ecology International. The US is paying $712 per patient for Merck's drug Joe Biden holds up a face mask at The Queen theater on October 28, 2020 in Wilmington, Delaware. Drew Angerer/Getty Images Merck is expected to reap billions from its new drug, fueled by supply deals with rich countries like the US.In June, the US government agreed to pay $1.2 billion in a supply deal for molnupiravir, if the drug wins an OK from the Food and Drug Administration. Merck declined to provide details on how that price was negotiated; the Department of Health and Human Services did not respond to Insider's request for comment on the price.Analysts expect molnupiravir to turn into a top-selling drug for Merck. The Bernstein analyst Ronny Gal projected in an October 6 research note that Merck will make $5.3 billion in 2022 sales for the drug, with about 80% of that coming from the US market. Gal forecasted $22 billion in total molnupiravir revenue for Merck through 2030.Investors appear to see that potential as well: Merck's stock price rose as much as 10% after the company announced the positive study results on October 1.The US is effectively paying about $712 per treatment course from the June deal. That price strikes some experts as too high, particularly given federal grant money that has been invested in the drug. The drug's early development was funded with $35 million in taxpayer grants, Axios reported."Unfortunately, in the US, we allow manufacturers to set whatever price they want, and as a result, we get situations like this," Dr. Aaron Kesselheim, a professor at Harvard Medical School said in an email, adding the government's negotiations factor into the public investment.But patients won't face that bill directly. The US government negotiated a supply deal for 1.7 million treatment courses, which will then be distributed to patients for free.Even at that price, molnupiravir is cheaper than other COVID-19 treatments. A pill is much simpler to produce than other medicines, given as IV infusions. The government is paying $2,100 per infusion of Regeneron's antibody cocktail and $3,200 for a five-day IV course of Gilead Sciences' antiviral remdesivir. The COVID-19 vaccines, on the other hand, are far cheaper, ranging from $10 to $40 per shot in the US.Merck hasn't set a commercial price for molnupiravir yet but said it will use different prices in countries by their income level.Even with access plan, some say Merck should do more Merck is researching molnupiravir as a potential antiviral treatment for COVID-19. Merck Advocates pointed out a few steps Merck could take that would improve access. Dzintars Gotham, an independent researcher and a physician at King's College Hospital, said it would be useful to know how much it costs Merck to produce the pills. That information can help countries negotiate fair prices, he said.Gotham and Melissa Barber, a doctoral candidate in population health sciences at Harvard University, released their own analysis, estimating it costs $17.74 to produce a course of molnupiravir.Merck declined to say how much it costs to make molnupiravir. Schaper said the marginal cost isn't the right question to ask on pricing, saying that doesn't consider the societal benefit of the drug.This lack of transparency is common in the drug industry, Gotham said. "A lot of drug pricing relies on very dramatic pricing asymmetry between the buyer and the seller," Gotham said, "which is a fancy term for the seller knowing a lot of information about what they could or couldn't afford in terms of pricing and the buyer not knowing much in terms of what's possible."Gotham and Love also both said they'd like to see Merck publicly release the contracts with generic suppliers. This would include information on the list of 105 included countries, how long the licenses last, and what royalties Merck receives from those sales."Licenses should be public," Gotham said. "I don't see a logical argument why they wouldn't be."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nytOct 13th, 2021

Futures Slide As Soaring Oil Nears $85

Futures Slide As Soaring Oil Nears $85 While cash bonds may be closed today for Columbus Day, which may or may not be a holiday - it's difficult to know anymore with SJW snowflakes opinions changing by the day - US equity futures are open and they are sliding as soaring oil prices add to worries over growing stagflation (Goldman and Morgan Stanley both slashed their GDP estimates over the weekend even as they both see rising inflation), fueling concern that a spreading energy crisis could hamper economic recovery (as a reminder, yesterday we had one, two, three posts on stagflation, showing just how freaked out Wall Street suddenly is). Rising raw material costs, labor shortages and other supply chain bottlenecks have raised concerns of elevated prices hammering corporate profits while rising rates are suggesting that a tidal wave of inflation is coming. And while cash bonds may be closed, one can easily extrapolate where they would be trading based on TSY futures which are currently trading at a 1.65% equivalent. But while cash bonds may be closed, the big mover on Monday was oil, with WTI surging nearly 3% and touched a seven-year high as an energy crisis gripping the major economies showed no sign of easing. Meanwhile, Brent rose just shy of $85, rising to the highest since late 2018 when the Fed abruptly reversed tightening course. Over in China, coal futures reached a record as flooding shuttered mines. The surge in oil lifted shares of Chevron Corp, Exxon Mobil Corp and APA Corp between 1.2% and 3% in premarket trading. At the same time, rising rates hit FAAMGs, with Apple, Microsoft and Amazon all falling between 0.6% and 0.8%. The surge above 1.6% for 10-year Treasury yields is intensifying debate among strategists over how to position investor portfolios amid anxiety over whether transitory inflation is transitioning into stagflation. Lucid Group rose 2.2% and Occidental Petroleum climbed 3.1%, leading gains in the U.S. premarket session. Here are some of the biggest movers and stocks to watch today: U.S.-listed Chinese tech stocks soar 2% to 5% in premarket trading, extending their recent rebound. Rally supported by Beijing slapping a smaller-than-expected fine on food delivery giant Meituan and last week’s news that U.S. President Joe Biden was planning to meet with Xi Jinping before the end of the year. Alibaba (BABA US +5%) leads gains, while (JD US) and Baidu (BIDU US) rise 2% apiece Watch U.S. energy stocks as oil surges past $80 a barrel as the global power crunch rattled a market in which OPEC+ has only been restoring output at a modest pace. Exxon Mobil (XOM US +1.1%), Chevron (CVX US +1%) and Occidental (OXY US +3.1%) among top risers in premarket trading. Robinhood (HOOD US) dropped 2%; the company was under pressure in U.S. premarket trading as a looming share sale by early investors and a toughening regulatory environment for cryptocurrencies are adding to the headwinds in the stock market for the darling of the U.S. retail trading mania. ChemoCentryx (CCXI US) up 2% in U.S. premarket trading, adding to Friday’s massive gains after the drug developer won U.S. approval for Tavneos as a treatment for a rare autoimmune disorder Cloudflare (NET US) slides 1.8% in U.S. premarket trading after Piper Sandler downgraded stock to neutral Akerna Corp. (KERN US) gained in Friday postmarket trading after Matthew Ryan Kane, a board member, bought $346,032 of shares, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission. “We see rising risks to global growth and evidence of more persistent inflation, which makes us more cautious on the outlook for global markets overall,” Salman Ahmed, global head of macro and strategic asset allocation at Fidelity International, wrote in a note to clients. In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index fell 0.2%, led by declines in travel and property firms. Miners and energy stocks were the two strongest-performing sectors in Europe on Monday on rising prices for iron ore and oil. The Stoxx 600 Basic Resources Index climbed as much as 2.4%, while the Energy Index gains as much as 1.5% to the highest since Feb. 24, 2020. European banking stocks also advanced on Monday, following four weeks of gains, and traded about 1.3% below pre-pandemic high. The sector has gained 36% ytd, is the best performer among 20 European sectors in 2021. Up 0.7% today, outperforming a slightly weaker broader Stoxx 600 Index and as investors tilt toward cyclical sectors. Earlier in the session, Asian stocks jumped, buoyed by Hong Kong-listed technology shares including Meituan, which was consigned a lower-than-expected regulatory fine. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index climbed as much as 0.9%, driven by the consumer-discretionary and communication sectors. Alibaba and Meituan were the top contributors to the gauge, each surging about 8% in the first trading in Hong Kong after the food-delivery giant was handed a $533 million fine for violating anti-monopolistic practices.  The result of the investigation into Meituan is “a relief and likely to provide closure to the share price overhang,” Citigroup analysts wrote in a note Friday, when the penalty was announced.  Hong Kong’s stock gauge was among the top performing in the region. Japan’s benchmarks also climbed as the yen weakened to an almost three-year low against the dollar and new Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said he’s not considering changes to the country’s capital-gains tax at present. Improved sentiment in China is providing much-needed support to Asian equities, which declined for four straight weeks amid uncertainty circling global markets. Power shortages in China and India, supply-chain woes, inflation risks and rising bond yields are all on the radar as the earnings season kicks off. “We are still in a market that is very, very concerned about the growth outlook,” said Kyle Rodda, market analyst at IG Markets. These sort of rallies that appear almost inexplicable are “symptomatic of the market still trying to piece together all pieces of the puzzle,” he added. Australia The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 0.3% to close at 7,299.80, with most subgauges taking a hit. Miners advanced, posting gains for a third session, offsetting losses in healthcare and consumer discretionary stocks.  Star Entertainment was the worst performer after a report saying the company had enabled suspected money laundering, organized crime and fraud at its Australian casinos for years. Fortescue surged after the company said it plans to build a green energy factory to rival China.  In New Zealand, the S&P/NZX 50 index dropped 0.5% to 13,019.37. In FX, the pound crept higher to touch an almost 2-week high versus the dollar and the Gilt curve shifted higher, led by the front-end, after the Bank of England’s Michael Saunders, one of the most hawkish members of the Monetary Policy Committee, suggested in remarks published Saturday that investors were right to bring forward bets on rate hikes. Hours earlier, Governor Andrew Bailey warned of a potentially “very damaging” period of inflation unless policy makers take action. Australia’s dollar led gains among G-10 currencies on the back of increases in oil, natural gas and iron ore prices and as Sydney emerges from a 15- week lockdown on Monday. Iron ore futures extended gains as improved rebar margins at Chinese steel mills buoyed demand prospects. The yen dropped against the dollar, with analysts forecasting more weakness ahead as the nation’s yield differentials widen. As noted above, treasury futures slumped in U.S. trading Monday, with the cash market closed for Columbus Day; they implied a yield of 1.65% on the 10Y. 10-year note futures price is down 8+/32, a price change equivalent to a yield increase of about 3bp. Benchmark 10-year yield ended Friday at 1.615%, its highest closing level since June, as investors focused on the inflationary aspects in mixed September employment data. China's10-year government bond futures declined to a three-month low while the yuan advanced as the central bank’s latest liquidity draining weakened expectations of fresh monetary policy easing. Futures contracts on 10-year notes fall 0.4% to 99.14, the lowest level since July 12. It dropped 0.4% on Friday. 10-year sovereign bond yields rose 5bps, the biggest gains in two months, to 2.96%. Looking ahead, upcoming reports on third-quarter company profits which start this week are seen as the next potential pressure point in a market already under siege from slowing global growth, sticky inflation and tighter monetary policies. Global earnings revisions are sliding - an omen for U.S. stocks that have taken their cue from rising earnings estimates all year. “The coming earnings’ season in the U.S. will be heavily scrutinized for pricing power, margins and clues on the shortage situation, as well as wage pressures,” according to Geraldine Sundstrom, a portfolio manager at  Pacific Investment Management Co. in London. “Already a number of large multinationals have issued warnings about production cuts and downgraded their Q3 outlook due to supply chain and labor shortages.” Market Snapshot S&P 500 futures down 0.3% to 4,371.25 STOXX Europe 600 down 0.2% to 456.41 German 10Y yield up 1.5 bps to -0.135% Euro little changed at $1.1568 MXAP up 0.8% to 196.45 MXAPJ up 0.7% to 642.13 Nikkei up 1.6% to 28,498.20 Topix up 1.8% to 1,996.58 Hang Seng Index up 2.0% to 25,325.09 Shanghai Composite little changed at 3,591.71 Sensex up 0.5% to 60,358.30 Australia S&P/ASX 200 down 0.3% to 7,299.79 Kospi down 0.1% to 2,956.30 Brent Futures up 1.9% to $83.98/bbl Gold spot down 0.1% to $1,755.02 U.S. Dollar Index up 0.11% to 94.17 Top Overnight News from Bloomberg The U.S. labor market will see “ups and downs” as the pandemic lingers, but it’s premature to judge that the recovery is in peril, said San Francisco Federal Reserve President Mary Daly Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said she expects Congress to take action soon to bring the U.S. into line with a global minimum tax agreed on last week by 136 countries Chinese builders are looking to payment extensions or debt exchanges to avoid default on imminent bond obligations as liquidity conditions tighten for the real estate sector Austria will get a new chancellor, though the career diplomat stepping into Sebastian Kurz’s shoes is a close ally of the departing conservative leader who resigned over a corruption scandal Just because pandemic inflation is transitory doesn’t mean it’s going away anytime soon. That’s the awkward conclusion that policy makers and investors are arriving at, as prices accelerate all over the world. European natural gas has climbed 25% in two weeks, and oil topped $80 for the first time since 2014. Fertilizers hit a record on Friday, which means food prices -- already at a 10- year peak -- will likely rise even higher A more detailed summary of overnight news from Newsquawk Asia-Pac stocks traded mostly positive but ended the day somewhat mixed after having shrugged off the early weakness stemming from last Friday’s lacklustre performance stateside and disappointing NFP jobs data. Note, markets in Taiwan and South Korea were closed. ASX 200 (-0.3%) was the laggard with underperformance in tech, consumer stocks and defensives overshadowing the gains in commodities and with Star Entertainment the worst hit with losses of more than 20% after media outlets alleged that it enabled suspected money laundering, organised crime, fraud and foreign interference which the Co. said were misleading reports. However, downside for the index was limited as New South Wales businesses reopened from the lockdown that lasted for over three months. Nikkei 225 (+1.6%) reversed opening losses as exporters cheered a weaker currency and with the government mulling over JPY 100bln financial support for chip factory construction. Hang Seng (+2.0%) and Shanghai Comp. (Unch) were both positive following talks between China's Vice Premier Liu He and USTR Tai on Saturday in which China was said to be negotiating for a cancellation of tariffs and sanctions. The advances in Hong Kong were led by tech stocks including Meituan despite the Co. being fined CNY 3.4bln by China’s market regulator for monopolistic behaviour, as the amount was seen to be a slap on the wrist, while the gains in the mainland were only mild as participants also reflected on the substantial liquidity drains by the PBoC totalling a net CNY 510bln since Saturday. Finally, 10yr JGBs were pressured amid the gains in Japanese stocks and lack of BoJ purchases in the market, while price action was also not helped by the continued weakness in T-note futures amid the semi-holiday conditions in US for Columbus Day in which the NYSE and the Nasdaq will open but bonds trading will remain shut. Top Asian News Australian IPOs Heading for Biggest Haul Since 2014: ECM Watch Syngenta’s Shanghai IPO Proposal Suspended For Earnings Update China Junk-Rated Dollar Bond Rout Deepens Amid Builder Worries China’s 10-Year Bond Yield Jumps By The Most Since August Bourses in Europe are mostly but modestly lower (Euro Stoxx 50 -0.1%, Stoxx 600 -0.2%) whilst the FTSE 100 (+0.2%) bucks the trend, owing to firm performances in its heavyweight sectors. US equity futures meanwhile trade within tight ranges with broad-based losses of some 0.3-0.4%. Fresh fundamental catalysts have remained light, although inflation and stagflation remain on traders' minds heading into this week's US and Chinese inflation metrics and against the backdrop of rising energy prices. Thus, the sector configuration sees Basic Resources, Oil & Gas and Banks at the top of the bunch, whilst the downside sees Travel & Leisure, Real Estate and Retail, with no overarching theme to be derived. Basic Resources is the marked outperformer as base metals are bolstered in what seems to be a function of the coal shortage in Asia, with iron ore contracts also surging overnight and copper following suit, in turn boosting the likes of Rio Tino (+3.2%), Antofagasta (+3.1%), Glencore (+3.1%), BHP (+2.8%). The top of the Stoxx 600 is dominated by metal names. In terms of individual movers, Carrefour (-2.2%) is softer after sources stated that exploratory talks over a Carrefour-Auchan tie-up ended due to the complexity of the deal. Evotec (+0.7%) holds onto gains as it seeks a Nasdaq listing. Roche (+0.6%) and Morphosys (+3.7%) underpin the health sector after the Cos received Breakthrough Therapy Designation from the US FDA for gantenerumab for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease. Top European News BOE Officials Double Down on Signals of Imminent Rate Hike Brexit Clash on Northern Ireland Means Headaches for Johnson Asos CEO Beighton Steps Down as Sales Growth Slows Adler Shares Flounder After Asset Disposal Plan, Past M&A Report In FX, the Aussie has secured a considerably firmer grip of the 0.7300 handle vs its US rival as COVID-19 restrictions are relaxed in NSW and base metals tread water after a mostly positive APAC equity session overnight. However, Aud/Usd is also firmer on the back of ongoing Greenback weakness and long liquidation from what some are calling ‘stretched’ levels of IMM positioning going in to Friday’s NFP release, while the Aud/Nzd cross has rebounded further above 1.0550 in wake of a rise in NZ virus cases that has prompted the PM to keep Auckland on level 3 alert for another week pending review. Hence, Nzd/Usd is capped around 0.6950 and continues to lag on the unwinding of Kiwi longs built up in advance of last week’s universally anticipated 25 bp RBNZ hike. Back to the Buck, but looking at the index in relation to where it was before and after the latest BLS report, 94.000 is providing some underlying support on Columbus Day that is not a full US market holiday, but will see cash Treasuries remain closed. Moreover, the DXY is gleaning momentum within a narrow 94.028-214 range via marked Yen underperformance amidst the latest rout in bonds and more pronounced technical impulses as Usd/Jpy extends beyond 112.50 and sets yet another 2021 peak around 112.95. GBP - Sterling is taking up post-payrolls Dollar slack as well, but firmer in its own right too as comments from BoE Governor Bailey and MPC member Saunders add to the growing expectation that rate hikes may be delivered sooner than had been expected before the former revealed that policy-setters were evenly divided at 4-4 in August on the subject of minimum criteria being achieved for tightening. Cable is hovering under 1.3650 and Eur/Gbp is sub-0.8500 in response, with the latter not really fazed by the UK-EU rift on NI protocol. CAD/NOK - The Loonie remains firm against its US peer after the stellar Canadian jobs data and Usd/Cad continues to probe support/bids at 1.2450 against the backdrop of strength in oil prices that is also keeping the Norwegian Krona afloat and Eur/Nok eyeing deeper sub-10.0000 lows irrespective of marginally mixed vs consensus inflation metrics. CHF/EUR/SEK - All rather rangy, aimless and looking for inspiration or clearer direction as the Franc straddles 0.9275 vs the Greenback, but remains firmer against the Euro above 1.0750 following only a faint rise in Swiss domestic bank sight deposits. Meanwhile, the Euro is pivoting 1.1575 vs the Buck and looks hemmed in by decent option expiry interest just outside the range given.1 bn rolling off between 1.1540-50 and 1.6 bn from 1.1590-1.1600 at the NY cut. Elsewhere, the Swedish Crown is slipping on risk-off grounds towards 10.1250 having tested resistance circa 10.1000. In commodities, WTI and Brent front-month futures continue the upward trajectory seen during the APAC session, with the complex underpinned heading into the winter period and against the backdrop of higher gas prices. The gains have been more pronounced in the US counterpart vs the global benchmark with no clear catalysts behind the outperformance, although this may be a continuation of the unwind seen after reports suggested a release of the US SPR (Strategic Petroleum Reserve) is unlikely. For context, reports of such a release last week took the WTI-Brent arb to almost USD 4.2/bbl vs USD 2.7/bbl at the time of writing. Furthermore, there have also been reports of lower US production under President Biden's "build back better" initiative, which puts more weight on renewable energy, with some energy analysts also suggesting that OPEC+ sees less of a threat from a "shale boom" as a result. Back to price action, WTI has been in the limelight after topping the USD 80/bbl overnight and extending gains to levels north of USD 81.50/bbl (vs low 79.55/bbl), whilst the Brent Dec contract topped USD 84.00/bbl (vs low USD 82.50/bbl). In terms of other news flow, sources suggested the fire at Lebanon's Zahrani fuel tank has been put out after the energy minister suggested the fire was contained – the cause of the fire is not yet known. Gas prices also remain elevated with UK nat gas futures relatively flat on the day but still north of GBP 2/Thm vs GBP 1/Thm mid-August and vs GBP 4/Thm last week, whilst the Qatari Energy Minister said he is unhappy about gas prices being high amid negative follow-through to customers. Over to metals, spot gold and silver are somewhat lacklustre, but with magnitudes of price action contained, with the former meandering just north of USD 1,750/oz and the latter above USD 22.50/oz heading into this week's key risk events. Overnight, iron ore futures were bolstered some 10% in Dalian and Singapore Exchanges amid fears of coking coal supply shortages - coking coal is an essential input to produce iron and steel. Traders should also be cognizant of the Chinese metrics released this week as another elevated PPI metric could see the release of more state reserves, as had been the case over the recent months. Using the Caixin PMIs as a proxy for the release, the PMI suggested sharp increases in both input costs and output prices – largely owed to supply chain delays, with the "rate of inflation was the quickest seen for four months, amid reports of greater energy and raw material costs. This, in turn, led to a solid increase in prices charged". The measure for output prices its highest in three months, whilst "the pressure of rising costs was partly transmitted downstream to consumers, as the demand was not weak." US Event Calendar Nothing major scheduled DB's Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap A reminder that it’s Columbus Day today where US bond markets are closed. Equity markets are open but expect it to be quiet. Ahead of this, this morning we have published our latest monthly survey results covering over 600 global market participants. See here for more. For the first time since June, the biggest perceived risk to markets is now higher yields and inflation, whilst direct Covid-19 risks are out of the top 3 for the first time. A further equity correction before YE remains the consensus now. 71% expect at least another 5% off equities at some point before YE (68% correctly suggested that last month). A very overwhelming 84% thought the next 25bps move in 10yr US Treasury yields would be up. Of some additional interest is that the definition of stagflation is varied but that the majority think it’s a high or very high risk for the next 12 months. The extreme of this view surprised me. While I’ve long thought the market has underestimated the inflation risks I would still say there is enough of a growth cushion for 2022. However it’s clear the risks have built. Anyway, lots more in the survey. Thanks for filling it in and see the results for details. The week ahead will centre around the US CPI release on Wednesday but it might be a touch backward looking given that energy has spiked more recently and that used car prices are again on the march after a late summer fall that will likely be captured in this week’s release. Elsewhere, we’ve got a potentially more challenging US earnings season than that seen over the last year will commence with the big financials from Wednesday. In addition minutes from the last FOMC will give clues to the latest taper thinking on Wednesday as well. The IMF/World Bank meetings will generate plenty of headlines this week with their latest world outlook update tomorrow the highlight. The best of the rest data wise consists of JOLTS (Tuesday),which we think is a better labour market indicator than payrolls albeit a month behind, US PPI (Thursday) which will give a scale of building pipeline price pressures, US retail sales and UoM consumer sentiment (Friday), and China’s CPI and PPI (Thursday). With all that to look forward to, markets have started the week on a strong note, with equity indices including the Hang Seng (+2.02%), Nikkei (+1.57%), CSI (+0.32%) and Shanghai Composite (+0.32%) all moving higher, whilst the Kospi (-0.11%) has seen a slight decline. Japanese stocks have been buoyed by comments from new PM Kishida over the weekend that he isn’t currently considering changes to the country’s capital-gains tax. That comes with just 20 days remaining until the country’s general election. Separately in China, the country’s energy woes continue with 60 of 682 coal mines closed in the Shanxi province due to heavy floods, with Chinese coal futures up +8.00% this morning. And the property market issues are continuing to persist, with a new Chinese developer Modern Land seeking a 3 month extension to a $250 million dollar bond due to mature on October 25. By the end of last week, a Bloomberg index of Chinese junk-rated dollar bonds had seen yields climb to a decade-high above 17%, so clearly one to still look out for. Unlike in Asia, equity futures are pointing lower in the US and Europe this morning, with those on the S&P 500 down -0.21%. In terms of the main highlight it’s clearly US CPI mid-week. Given my views that inflation risks have been massively understated this year I’ve been saying for months that these reports have potentially been the most important monthly data we have seen for years. But since they mostly come and go with a “meh… mostly transitory” and a relative whimper, I’ve clearly been wrong to over hype them. So ignore me when I say that this month’s report might not be that interesting. With energy soaring over the last month and signs of inflation pressures continuing to build elsewhere then I’m not sure we can read too much into this month’s figures. Take used cars. Given the 2-3 month lag between actual prices and their CPI impact, this month will more than likely reflect a softening of prices in the summer. However September saw prices rise +5.4% so this will probably show up towards the end of the year along with the recent rise in energy costs. Our economists expect a +0.41% headline (vs. +0.27% previously) and +0.27% core (vs. +0.10%) mom rate. This is a bit above consensus and would take the yoy rate to 5.4% (up a tenth) and 4.1% (unch) respectively. Speaking of inflationary pressures, this morning has seen energy prices take a further leg higher, with WTI oil (+1.90%) moving back above $80/bbl for the first time since late 2014, whilst Brent crude (+1.42%) has moved above $83/bbl. European natural gas prices will continue to be an important one to follow amidst the astonishing price surge there, but the declines at the end of last week mean prices finished the week down by more than -45% since their intraday peak on Wednesday, before the comments from Russian President Putin that brought down prices. The rest of the day-by-day calendar is at the end as usual but although it’s a second tier release normally, tomorrow’s JOLTS will be interesting in as far as it might confirm that the main labour problems in August were a lack of supply rather than demand. The report’s full value is reduced by it being a number of weeks out of date but there’s a reasonable argument for saying that this is a better gauge of the state of the labour market than the payroll release. We go through Friday’s mixed report at the end when looking back at last week. Outside of data, it’s that time again as earnings season gets going, with a number of US financials kicking things off from mid-week. In terms of the highlights, we’ll hear from JPMorgan Chase, BlackRock and Delta Air Lines on Wednesday. Then on Thursday, we’ll get UnitedHealth, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, US Bancorp and Walgreens Boots Alliance. Finally on Friday, we’ll hear from Charles Schwab and Goldman Sachs. For more info on the upcoming earnings season, you can read DB’s equity strategists Q3 S&P 500 preview here. Back to markets, it was interesting over the weekend that the BoE’s Saunders chose to endorse market expectation of an earlier start to the hiking cycle in the UK rather than push back against it. He is on the more hawkish end of the spectrum but it was an important statement. Earlier, Governor Bailey suggested that there could potentially be a very damaging period of higher inflation ahead if policy makers didn’t react. Interestingly our survey showed that the market thinks the BoE is likely to make a policy error by being too hawkish so a battle seems likely to commence over policy here in the UK over the coming weeks and months. The November meeting appears live. Those comments have helped to support the pound this morning, which is up by +0.16% against the US Dollar. Looking back to last week now, risk sentiment was supported in the first full week of Q4 by easing European energy prices and a cease fire on the debt ceiling that avoided disaster and bought Washington lawmakers 8 weeks to find a more permanent solution. Global equity indices thus gained on the week: the S&P 500 picked up +0.79%, with a slight -0.19% pullback on Friday, and European equities kept pace with the STOXX 600 rallying +0.97% (-0.28% on Friday). Cyclical stocks led the way on both sides of the Atlantic; energy stocks were among the best performers whist financials benefitted from higher yields and a steeper curve. Speaking of which, US 10yr Treasury yields gained a punchy +14.1bps to close the week at 1.603%, their highest levels since early June. The benchmark gradually increased 3.0bps after Friday’s employment data. Inflation compensation continued to drive rate increases, as US 10yr breakevens gained +13.5 bps to finish the week at 2.515%. We need to go back to May to find higher levels. The sovereign yield increases were global in nature, with German bunds gaining +7.3bps and UK gilts +15.6bps higher. German 10yr breakevens gained +3.9bps while UK breakevens were +12.0bps higher. US nonfarm payrolls increased +194k in September, well below consensus expectations of a +500k gain, though private payrolls increased +317k and net two month revisions were up +169k. The unemployment rate ticked down to a post-pandemic low of 4.8% on the back of a declining labour force participation rate. Average hourly earnings were robust, increasing +0.6% mom (+0.4% expected). Taken in concert, the print likely cleared the (admittedly low) bar to enable the FOMC to announce tapering at the November meeting, whilst also feeding the creeping stagflation narrative (see survey results). Elsewhere, building on a preliminary July deal, the OECD said 136 nations have signed up to implement a 15% minimum global tax rate to address adequate taxation of multinational tech firms. As part of the deal, countries agreed not to impose any additional digital services taxes.       Tyler Durden Mon, 10/11/2021 - 08:12.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeOct 11th, 2021

10 Things in Politics: Campaigns get into bitcoin

And one of the highest-ranking House Republicans refuses to say Trump legitimately lost. Welcome back to 10 Things in Politics. Sign up here to receive this newsletter. Plus, download Insider's app for news on the go - click here for iOS and here for Android. Send tips to's what we're talking about:Altcoins and bitcoin are campaign fuel for these 17 crypto-minded politicians and political groupsHigh-ranking House Republican refuses to say Trump legitimately lostFauci says it's safe for children to trick-or-treat on HalloweenWith Phil Rosen. Avishek Das/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty 1. ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL: Politicians are cashing in on the crypto boom. A growing number of candidates and political groups are interested in accepting bitcoin and altcoins. The only problem is that federal law in this area leaves a lot of open questions.Here's what you need to know:Campaigns can legally accept bitcoin: The Federal Election Commission, the agency tasked with overseeing federal elections, established this right in 2014. But its guidance on the subject leaves a lot of ambiguity, including over whether campaigns can use cryptocurrency to buy goods and services and whether it's legal to accept more than $100 worth of bitcoin. To further complicate matters, the guidance is so outdated that it applies only to bitcoin, not any of the many other cryptocurrencies like dogecoin.Things get even messier when it comes to super PACs: The FEC doesn't say whether super PACs, which may legally accept unlimited amounts of money to advocate or oppose politicians, can also accept unlimited amounts of crypto.Politicians are moving ahead anyway: The NRCC, House Republicans' campaign arm, became the first national party committee to accept crypto. It is able to get around the $100 question by converting any crypto donations into cash before it hits its account.The Yang Gang is joining too: The former Democratic presidential hopeful Andrew Yang, who just started a third party called the Forward Party, has pledged that his outfit will accept crypto too. He plans to use BitPay, which is what the NRCC uses too.Read more about how Washington is getting into crypto, including how every lawmaker has already received $50 worth of bitcoin.2. Hundreds of thousands of US troops are not fully vaccinated: Sizable portions of the military are not vaccinated even as deadlines approach for the Pentagon's COVID-19 vaccine mandate, The Washington Post reports. The vaccination rate varies within different branches and military segments. The Post, for example, found 90% of the active-duty Navy was fully vaccinated but just 72% of the Marine Corps was. The reserves and the National Guard have large numbers of unvaccinated troops. Officials say part of the delay is due to different deadlines for the services. More on the concerns about how the lagging vaccination rates will affect troop readiness.3. Taliban says US will provide humanitarian aid to Afghans: The Taliban made the claim after the first direct talks between the US and the militants since American forces withdrew, the Associated Press reports. The US appeared to confirm only that humanitarian aid had been discussed. The US is also yet to recognize the Taliban as the legitimate leaders of Afghanistan. Here's where things stand as the two sides grapple with Afghanistan's future.4. High-ranking House Republican refuses to say Trump lost: House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, the No. 2 House Republican, refused to say Joe Biden fairly won the 2020 US presidential election almost a year after it took place. Fox News' Chris Wallace repeatedly pressed Scalise on whether he believed Donald Trump's baseless claims of widespread voter fraud. Scalise refused to give a direct answer. More on what this means for the state of the GOP.5. Southwest cancels more than 1,000 flights: The airline had canceled nearly a third of its daily schedule as of early last night, the highest rate of any major US airline, the Associated Press reports. Southwest cited air-traffic-control issues and weather delays, but analysts are speculating about other possibilities, including that the airline might've scheduled too many flights and that some pilots were protesting the company's COVID-19 vaccine mandate. The union representing Southwest pilots, which is suing the airline over its pandemic policies, denied pilots were staging a protest. More on what the fallout may be for a major airline. Pool / Pool/ Getty Images 6. Fauci says Americans should enjoy trick-or-treating: Dr. Anthony Fauci on Sunday said COVID-19 cases in the US were headed in the "right direction" and Americans should feel free to enjoy outdoor Halloween festivities like trick-or-treating. He also cautioned against prematurely declaring victory over the pandemic, however, noting that past surges had sprung up after relative lulls. More on what Fauci thinks about where things stand.7. Prosecutors say a Navy nuclear engineer tried to pass secrets via a sandwich: Jonathan Toebbe is accused of attempting to sell classified data about nuclear submarines to someone he thought was a foreign agent - by popping the intel into an SD card and slotting it into a peanut-butter sandwich. "I believe this information will be of great value to your nation. This is not a hoax," prosecutors say Toebbe wrote in one message to someone he thought was a foreign intelligence agent. Instead, the FBI was on the receiving end. More on the wild details of the espionage-related charges.8. Police arrest three men after a deadly St. Paul shooting: Officers found 15 people injured when they responded to what was described as a "hellish" scene at a bar in Minnesota early Sunday morning. Fourteen people were sent to nearby hospitals, and a woman described to be in her 20s died. Here's the latest.9. Ivanka Trump nearly led the World Bank, report says: Donald Trump wanted to name his daughter to lead the World Bank in 2019, but then-Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin intervened to block the appointment, The Intercept reports. "It came incredibly close to happening," a source told the publication. More on the episode. "Squid Game." Netflix 10. The popularity of "Squid Game" has stunned Hollywood: The South Korean series has become extraordinarily popular, reaching No. 1 in 90 countries in 10 days, and Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos said early on that it was likely to unseat "Bridgerton" as the streamer's all-time most popular series. Netflix did little to market the show outside Asia, relying on its recommendation engine, social media, and word of mouth to get audiences to watch what has become a worldwide hit. Read more about how "Squid Game" is spawning memes and increased costume sales.Speaking of merch: Walmart is partnering with Netflix to sell merchandise related to "Squid Game," "Stranger Things," "Ada Twist," and more. Alas, "Squid Game" tracksuits won't be available until later this year.Today's trivia question: Today marks the anniversary of when former President Jimmy Carter won the Nobel Peace Prize. Who was the first president to win the high honor? (ICYMI: This year's prize went to two outspoken critical journalists from the Philippines and Russia.)'s answer: A reproduction of Modigliani's "Woman with a Fan" is shown in 2012's "Skyfall," the third installment in Daniel Craig's turn as James Bond. In reality, the painting was one of five stolen during a daring art heist from Paris' Musée d'Art Moderne in 2010. The thief, who stole the paintings worth an estimated $110 million, and two of his accomplices have been sentenced to prison. The art is still missing.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytOct 11th, 2021

Goldman Sachs has reached a settlement with a former intern who accused the investment banking firm of fostering a "fraternity culture"

In one incident, Patrick Blumenthal claims he suffered bleeding to the brain after an adviser punched him in the stomach, shoved, and headlocked him. Brendan McDermid/File Photo/Reuters Goldman Sachs and a former intern have settled, according to court filings from Thursday. The intern accused the company of fostering a culture that promotes hazing and violence. He says he suffered bleeding to the brain after an adviser punched him and headlocked him. Goldman Sachs has reached a settlement with a former intern who accused the investment firm of fostering a "fraternity culture" that promoted hazing and violence. Patrick Blumenthal was a Drexel University student who interned for Goldman Sachs in San Francisco beginning in September 2017. Court filings say Blumenthal was assigned to work with a group that called itself "Team 007" and was led by wealth adviser Julius Erukhimov. A complaint alleges that the bank "fostered a fraternity culture" complete with derogatory name-calling, physical altercations, and "rampant" drinking. It says Blumenthal was pressured to drink within his first week at Goldman despite being underage and was repeatedly warned early on that he would "take an infinite amount of shit from people." The filing says Erukhimov called the plaintiff a "pussy" for not drinking enough and even told Blumenthal to take Adderall so he could drink more.The settlement, filed Thursday in the San Francisco Superior Court, does not reveal the specific terms of the agreement. Perhaps the most damning incident in the lawsuit says Blumenthal was "forced to drink by his managers" during a "First Friday" bar event. The filing accuses Erukhimov of telling Blumenthal that he would "teach him how to drink" before punching him in his stomach and telling him to punch his manager back.When Blumenthal said no, the complaint filing says, Erukhimov wrestled with him and shoved him from the bar to the outdoor patio. The adviser then allegedly choked Blumenthal for so long that he passed out and urinated on himself. Blumenthal came away from the incident with an injured head, the filing says. He went to the emergency room days later, according to the complaint, where doctors told him he had bleeding to the brain. Multiple Goldman employees witnessed the event, Blumenthal's lawyers say in the complaint filing. And they let Erukhimov drive Blumenthal to Erukhimov's home, where he took four pain relievers. At the adviser's apartment, Erukhimov allegedly threatened him, saying a relative would kill him if Blumenthal disclosed the events of the night to management.Goldman Sachs did not immediately respond to a request for comment asking for the details of the settlement. Insider's Ben Winck contributed to this report.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytOct 9th, 2021

Allogene (ALLO) Falls on FDA Clinical Hold on CAR-T Studies

The FDA places Allogene's (ALLO) clinical studies evaluating AlloCAR T therapy candidates on hold, following chromosomal abnormality observed in an early-stage study patient receiving ALLO-501A. Allogene Therapeutics, Inc. ALLO announced that the FDA has placed its clinical studies evaluating AlloCAR T-based cancer therapies on clinical hold. The decision was taken by the regulatory authority, following a report of a chromosomal abnormality with unclear clinical significance in a patient in the phase I/II study — ALPHA2 — evaluating its next-generation, AlloCAR T candidate, ALLO-501A.The FDA is currently reviewing the end of phase I materials submitted by the company to support the start of a pivotal phase II study on ALLO-501A. Meanwhile, the company is investigating the abnormality for further evidence of clinical relevance, evidence of clonal expansion, or potential relationship to gene editing. The company expects to provide additional updates from the study, especially on this abnormality, in the upcoming weeks, following consultation with the FDA.Allogene is developing a pipeline of off-the-shelf T cell product candidates that are designed to target and kill cancer cells. It has a deep pipeline of allogeneic chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell product candidates targeting multiple promising antigens in a host of hematological malignancies and solid tumors. The FDA’s clinical hold should temporarily halt all its ongoing clinical studies, hurting the company’s prospects.The clinical hold hurt investors’ sentiments that led to a decline of 32.7% in Allogene’s share price during after-hours trading on Oct 7. The company’s shares have declined 3.4% so far this year compared with the industry’s decrease of 12%.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchThe clinical hold was based on a single case in the ALPHA2 study in a patient with stage IV transformed follicular lymphoma whose disease was refractory to two prior lines of immune-chemotherapy and additional radiation therapy. Moreover, the patient was not able to receive an autologous CD19 CAR T cell therapy due to some manufacturing failure.The company reported that the patient experienced complications following the administration of ALLO-501A, which required a course of high-dose steroid therapy. The patient developed progressive pancytopenia or low blood count subsequently. The company did a bone marrow biopsy and found the patient suffering from aplastic anemia and also detected the presence of ALLO-501A CAR T cells with the chromosomal abnormality. However, the company stated that the patient has achieved a partial response to the AlloCAR T therapy.Apart from ALLO-501A, the company has three other AlloCAR T- based therapy candidates in its internal pipeline evaluating them in hematologic cancers. The company is sponsoring a phase I study (the ALPHA trial) of ALLO-501 in patients with relapsed or refractory (R/R) non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). The company continues to advance the phase I study (the TRAVERSE trial) of ALLO-316, an allogeneic CAR T cell product candidate targeting CD70, in adult patients with advanced or metastatic clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC). A phase I study, UNIVERSAL, is underway. The study is evaluating ALLO-715 as a monotherapy and in combination with nirogacestat, SpringWorks Therapeutics’ SWTX investigational gamma secretase inhibitor.While the CAR T space holds promise competition is stiff.  Earlier in the year, the FDA approved bluebird bio BLUE/Bristol Myers Squibb’s BMY CAR T cell immunotherapy, Abecma. Other approved CAR T cell therapies in the United States included Gilead’s Yescarta and Novartis’ Kymriah.Allogene Therapeutics, Inc. Price Allogene Therapeutics, Inc. price | Allogene Therapeutics, Inc. QuoteZacks RankAllogene currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here. Infrastructure Stock Boom to Sweep America A massive push to rebuild the crumbling U.S. infrastructure will soon be underway. It’s bipartisan, urgent, and inevitable. Trillions will be spent. Fortunes will be made. The only question is “Will you get into the right stocks early when their growth potential is greatest?” Zacks has released a Special Report to help you do just that, and today it’s free. Discover 7 special companies that look to gain the most from construction and repair to roads, bridges, and buildings, plus cargo hauling and energy transformation on an almost unimaginable scale.Download FREE: How to Profit from Trillions on Spending for Infrastructure >>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 Bristol Myers Squibb Company (BMY): Free Stock Analysis Report bluebird bio, Inc. (BLUE): Free Stock Analysis Report Allogene Therapeutics, Inc. (ALLO): Free Stock Analysis Report SpringWorks Therapeutics Inc. (SWTX): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on click here......»»

Category: topSource: zacksOct 8th, 2021

Twitter (TWTR) To Sell Mobile Ad Unit MoPub to AppLovin for $1B

Twitter (TWTR) agrees to sell MoPub mobile advertising network to AppLovin to develop its owned and operated revenue products. Twitter TWTR recently entered into a definitive agreement to sell its MoPub mobile advertising network to game developer and ad-tech company AppLovin Corporation APP for $1.05 billion in cash.The MoPub network is used by 45,000 mobile apps and reaches 1.5 billion addressable users. As part of Twitter, MoPub generated revenues of more than $188 million in 2020, representing nearly 5.9% of the advertising revenues.The sale of MoPub follows Apple’s AAPL iOS 14.5 update in April that has made it difficult for advertisers to track user activity on their iPhones and iPads. The network allows companies to track ad inventory in real time, similar to Alphabet's GOOGL Double Click.Twitter intends to utilize the proceeds received from the sale deal to build its owned and operated revenue-generating features and drive growth across key areas for the service including performance-based advertising, small and medium-sized business (SMB) offerings, and commerce initiatives. The sale is aligned with Twitter's goal of reaching $7.5 billion in revenues by the end of 2023.It will provide additional details on the estimated financial impact of the deal when it reports its third-quarter earnings on Oct 26.Twitter, Inc. Price and Consensus Twitter, Inc. price-consensus-chart | Twitter, Inc. QuoteIncreasing Efforts to Attract Content Creators and Safeguard UsersTwitter is exploring new revenue streams that tap into explosive growth in the young content creator economy, sparked by the popularity of TikTok, Instagram and YouTube among others platforms with features like Super Follows and Ticketed Spaces.Attracting and keeping creators and their audiences have become crucial for the tech companies battling to attract an audience and advertising profits.Last month, Twitter enabled users to tip their favorite content creators with bitcoin besides third-party payment providers, as the network steps up its efforts to attract content creators essential to drawing crowds online. Besides Bitcoin, Twitter will let users connect nine traditional payment providers to their profiles to accept tips.This Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company also plans to support authentication for non-fungible tokens (NFTs), which are digital assets such as images or videos that exist on a blockchain. The feature will let users track and showcase their NFT ownership on Twitter by allowing NFT creators to connect their crypto wallets to Twitter. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.Twitter also launched Clubhouse-like audio rooms, new interest-based communities and a number of experimental features designed to make the platform more interactive and safer.The company is ramping up tools for users to keep exchanges on the platform civil, or avoid wading into unexpectedly contentious online conversations. Twitter also created new features like enabling users to edit follower lists and a tool to archive old tweets to restrict their visibility to others after a specific amount of time.Moreover, the company has made a number of acquisitions this year so far including that of ad-free reading tool Scroll and popular newsletter platform Revue besides podcast app Breaker in an attempt to meet its top-line goals. Infrastructure Stock Boom to Sweep America A massive push to rebuild the crumbling U.S. infrastructure will soon be underway. It’s bipartisan, urgent, and inevitable. Trillions will be spent. Fortunes will be made. The only question is “Will you get into the right stocks early when their growth potential is greatest?” Zacks has released a Special Report to help you do just that, and today it’s free. Discover 7 special companies that look to gain the most from construction and repair to roads, bridges, and buildings, plus cargo hauling and energy transformation on an almost unimaginable scale.Download FREE: How to Profit from Trillions on Spending for Infrastructure >>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 Apple Inc. (AAPL): Free Stock Analysis Report AppLovin Corporation (APP): Free Stock Analysis Report Twitter, Inc. (TWTR): Free Stock Analysis Report Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksOct 8th, 2021

10 Things in Politics: McConnell defies Trump on the debt ceiling

And sources say they're not buying Matt Gaetz's new "happy husband" rebrand. Welcome back to 10 Things in Politics. Sign up here to receive this newsletter. Plus, download Insider's app for news on the go - click here for iOS and here for Android. Send tips to's what we're talking about:Mitch McConnell reverses on the debt ceiling as Congress moves to give itself more timeSources say they're not buying Matt Gaetz's new 'happy husband' rebrandTrump lawyer is urging former top aides to stonewall the Capitol riot inquiryWith Phil Rosen. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky speaks after a GOP policy luncheon on Capitol Hill. AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File 1. FROM THE HALLS OF CONGRESS: Washington's latest drama is almost over - kind of. Senators moved last night to extend the debt limit to last until December, ending weeks of brinksmanship as top CEOs and administration officials begged lawmakers to act. The Senate vote sparked its own saga, with an agitated former President Donald Trump, annoyed conservatives, and some gleeful Democrats. Key disagreements very much remain, meaning this is more of a to-be-continued kind of ending.Here's where things stand:Mitch McConnell and top leaders had to squeeze their fellow Republicans: McConnell summoned his colleagues for a tense meeting before the vote as they discussed the party's strategy, Politico reports. Sen. Ted Cruz told reporters afterward that "it was a mistake to offer this deal." In the end, the GOP mustered 11 votes, one more than necessary to give Democrats the necessary 60 votes so they could end debate and pass the two-month fix on their own. Many Republicans didn't seem to care that Trump was also opposed to the deal.McConnell is still pressing Democrats: He previously said the extension was meant only to give Democrats more time to raise the debt ceiling for the longer term by themselves through the special budget process known as reconciliation. Democrats continue to insist they won't do that. (Now you see why this is far from over.)Republicans were also furious at how Democrats responded: "There's a time to be graceful and there's a time to be combative. That was a time for grace and common ground," Sen. Mitt Romney, who did not vote to help Democrats, said of Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer's blistering speech after the vote. Schumer chided Republicans for pushing things to this point.Centrist Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin was also not pleased, per Politico's Burgess Everett: Burgess Everett/Twitter The House is expected to send the extension to President Joe Biden's desk next week.2. Not everyone is buying Rep. Matt Gaetz's new image: The family-man depiction is a notable shift for the 39-year-old Florida congressman, who is the subject of a federal sex-trafficking investigation that centers on allegations he had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl. "It's somewhere between look-over-here magic-trick stuff and maybe pretending" the investigation isn't happening, a Republican who worked with Gaetz in Florida told Insider. Read more about how Florida political insiders see Gaetz's marriage as "image management" by the congressman.3. US Marines are said to be training troops in Taiwan: The Wall Street Journal reports that the trainings have taken place for at least a year amid concerns about China. The force is said to includes about two dozen special operators and support troops working with ground-force units and an unspecified number of Marines working with Taiwan's maritime units. The Pentagon didn't confirm the report but did comment on what it called "the current threat posed by the People's Republic of China."4. Trump lawyer is urging former top aides to stonewall Capitol riot inquiry: A letter from the Trump legal team instructs former advisors and aides not to comply with subpoenas issued by the House select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection, Politico reports. Trump's team cited executive privilege and what it called the "outrageously broad" nature of the requests as reasons for its objection to any testimony. The Washington Post reports that Rep. Jamie Raskin, a Democrat from Maryland who serves on the riot panel, threatened contempt charges for those failing to comply with the committee's requests. It's unclear whether top officials like the former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows will now refuse to cooperate with the investigation.5. Tesla HQ is moving to Texas: ​​CEO Elon Musk stressed that while Tesla's home base was moving to Austin from Palo Alto, the company wasn't leaving California altogether. Signs of such a move have abounded, including Musk's public frustration with California's pandemic-related restrictions. Musk also cited the lack of affordable housing and long commutes as reasons for his decision. More on the news.6. Trump claims Haitians seeking to enter the US "probably have AIDS": The former president lashed out against Haitian migrants seeking to enter the US, saying that hundreds of thousands of them were "flowing in." The Post reported in 2018, of course, that Trump privately called Haiti a "shithole" country when discussing the protection of immigrants. His latest remarks echo his widely criticized past comments.7. Texas abortion clinics spring into action after a favorable ruling: Representatives from Whole Woman's Health, a national abortion provider with four abortion clinics in Texas, told reporters that they and several other providers had already begun to perform previously prohibited abortion procedures after the roughly six-week deadline presented by the law. A federal judge this week temporarily blocked Texas' law, which functions as a near-complete ban on abortions. The state is appealing. The abortion clinics are still taking major risks and could be opening themselves up to future penalties.8. Matthew McConaughey breaks silence on whether he'll run for office: The Academy Award winner told The New York Times that he's still undecided about whether he'd challenge Gov. Greg Abbott, adding that many had told him "politics is a bag of rats." McConaughey did take public positions on some issues for the first time, deeming the state's abortion law "juvenile in its implementation." More from the interview, including how McConaughey responded to a jab from Beto O'Rourke.9. Eighteen former NBA players are accused of massive medical fraud: Authorities allege that the group defrauded the NBA's health and welfare benefit plan with nearly $4 million in fraudulent claims. According to court filings, players in question include the former Memphis Grizzlies defensive star Tony Allen, the league journeyman Sebastian Telfair, and the former Celtics center Glen "Big Baby" Davis. More details from the indictment. Princess Keisha and Prince Kunle at their home in London. Mikhaila Friel/Insider 10. Nigeria's Prince Kunle and Princess Keisha left royal life years before Harry and Meghan: Prince Kunle told Insider he turned down the opportunity to be king of the Arigbabuowo ruling house, and now he lives in London with his wife. The couple have no plans of returning to royal life, and Kunle said he made the move to preserve his family's freedom. Get the inside scoop on the once royal couple.Today's trivia question: Here's another Bond-related question to mark the US release of "No Time to Die." In "Skyfall," a replica of a masterpiece painting is shown. The real painting was stolen a few years before the movie's release. Which artist painted the original? Email your answer and a suggested question to me at's answer: Walt Disney looked at St. Louis as a location for his second park before choosing Florida. Legend says the deal fell apart over Disney's reported refusal to sell alcohol, but historians think money was the big reason things went sour. Disney is pulling out all the stops to mark Walt Disney World's 50th anniversary. Watch a pianist return to play in the park half a century later.That's all for now. Have a wonderful weekend!Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 8th, 2021

A timeline of Donald Trump"s efforts to overturn the 2020 election

A new Senate report published Thursday details the ways in which then-President Donald Trump attempted to overturn the 2020 election results. Former President Donald Trump. Win McNamee/Getty Images Former President Donald Trump began sowing doubt about the 2020 election months before votes were cast. After he lost to Joe Biden, Trump tried several methods to overturn the results of the vote. A new Senate report released Thursday details how the president and his allies undermined democracy. A bombshell Senate report published Thursday details the lengths to which former President Donald Trump went in order to, first, sow doubt about the impending 2020 presidential election, and then, overturn the results in the aftermath of his loss.Of the most substantial revelations is the report's claim that the flailing president made a plan to install a loyalist as acting attorney general to pursue baseless reports of election fraud - a plan that saw top Justice Department officials threaten to resign en masse days before the inauguration, according to the report. The then-president's efforts to ensure he remained in power began long before a mob of his supporters attacked the Capitol on January 6, and were bubbling beneath the surface before the November election was even held.Below is an abridged timeline of Trump's efforts to overturn the contentious 2020 election.September/October 2020:More than two months before the election, Trump administration Attorney General William Barr falsely claimed on CNN that mail-in voting is ripe for fraud and coercion. The unfounded allegations followed months of similar claims by Barr, including during his July House Judiciary Committee testimony, when he said mail voting creates a "high risk" of voter fraud.Weeks later, the Department of Justice issued a press release announcing an investigation into nine "discarded" mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania, claiming the majority had been cast for Trump. The department released the statement in spite of a decades-old policy of staying out of election fraud matters, the report said. Days later, the DOJ issued an internal memo announcing an exception to that "general non-interference" policy.November 2020The election was held on November 3, 2020, and four days later, several media organizations confirmed that President Joe Biden won both the popular vote and the Electoral College. In the following days, Trump tweeted several falsehoods, including baseless claims of voter fraud, lies about Dominion Voting Systems, and unfounded allegations of contested states. On November 9, Attorney General Barr weakened the DOJ's election non-interference policy even further.On November 14, the Trump campaign distributed its own internal memo refuting multiple allegations against the efficacy of the Dominion Voting Systems, which the Senate report said reflected the administration's "early knowledge that such allegations are baseless."Five days later, Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell continued to espouse falsehoods about the election at a press conference at the Republican National Committee. "I know crimes. I can smell them. You don't have to smell this one. I can prove it to you 18 different ways," Giuliani told the crowd.December 2020As the certification of Biden's win drew closer, the then-president's efforts to sow doubt picked up significantly in December. On December 1, Barr announced that the DOJ had not seen fraud "on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election." But Trump's other allies, primarily Giuliani, continued making false claims of fraud, focusing their first efforts on Georgia. The state's Secretary of State Office rebutted the attorney's claim after investigating, despite continued pressure from the president's associates.On December 4, the Trump campaign along with the chairman of the Georgia Republican Party, filed a suit in Fulton County Superior Court seeking to invalidate the results. One day later, the suit was rejected. On December 8, the US Supreme Court rejected a separate suit to block Pennsylvania's certification of the results, and three days later, the top court did the same for a suit seeking to overturn results in Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. After then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell congratulated Biden on his win on December 15, Trump sent a flurry of angry tweets targeting the Republican leader. "Too soon to give up. Republican Party must finally learn to fight. People are angry!" he wrote.On December 19, Trump tweeted about the upcoming January 6 Joint Session of Congress that would become the infamous Capitol attack."Big protests in D.C. on January 6. Be there. Will be wild!"Following Barr's resignation earlier in the month, Trump asked acting Attorney General Phil Rosen on December 27 to "just say the election was corrupt and leave the rest to me and the Republican Congressmen," according to the Senate report. In the same conversation, Trump brought up possibly replacing Rosen with loyalist attorney Jeffrey Clark.At the end of the month, Trump held a "contentious" meeting with Rosen and Principal Associate Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue, in which he questioned why the DOJ still had not "found the fraud," according to the report. At this meeting, Trump reportedly said he should fire both of them and replace them with his ally, Clark.January 2021On January 1, Trump once again tweeted about the upcoming January 6 rally, as the president's allies continued seeking opportunities to "investigate" false election fraud claims throughout the country. The following day, Trump, along with White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and Trump campaign attorney Cleta Mitchell, called Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and pressured him to change the state's vote totals in order to "find" enough votes for Trump to win. During a January 3 meeting, Justice Department senior leadership told Trump that they would resign if the president replaced Rosen with Clark as acting attorney general, but according to the Senate report, the meeting continued for hours before Trump agreed to keep Rosen in his position.On January 4, Trump, along with outside attorney John Eastman tried to convince then-Vice President Mike Pence to dismiss the Electoral College votes for seven states when he presided over the Joint Session of Congress scheduled for January 6. As Congress was set to certify the election results, Trump incited his followers many of whom went on to storm the Capitol in an attempt to stop the process. The crowd forced Congress to go into lockdown and damaged the halls of government. More than 650 people have been arrested and charged with crimes in relation to the incident. On January 20, despite Trump's efforts, Biden was inaugurated as the 46th president. Thursday's Senate report includes an even more detailed breakdown of the steps Trump took to try and overturn the results. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 7th, 2021

September Payrolls Preview: It Will Be A Beat, The Question Is How Big

September Payrolls Preview: It Will Be A Beat, The Question Is How Big After a strong initial claims report and a solid ADP private payrolls print, all eyes turn to the most important economic data point of the week, and the month, Friday's nonfarm payrolls report due at 830am ET on Friday, where consensus expects a 500K print- more than double last month's disappointing 235K print - as well as a drop in the unemployment rate to 5.1% and an increase in average hourly earnings to 4.6%. And unlike last month, when we correctly predicted the big miss in August payrolls, this time we agree that tomorrow's report will be a beat, the only question is how big. Here is a snapshot of what to expect tomorrow: Total Payrolls: 500K, Last 235K Private Payrolls: 450K, Last 243K Unemployment Rate: 5.1%, Last 5.2% Labor force participation rate: 61.8%, Last 61.7% Average Hourly Earnings Y/Y: 4.6%, Last 4.3% Average Hourly Earnings M/M: 0.4%, Last 0.6% Average Weekly Hours: 34.7, Last 34.7 As Newsquawk writes in its NFP preview, September’s jobs data, the last before the Fed’s November 3rd policy meeting, will be framed in the context of the central bank’s expected taper announcement, where a merely satisfactory report would likely to be enough for the FOMC to greenlight a November announcement to scale-back its USD 120BN/month asset purchases. Goldman economists are more bullish than normal, and estimate nonfarm payrolls rose 600k in September, above consensus of +500k, and they note that "labor demand remains very strong, and we believe the nationwide expiration of enhanced unemployment benefits on September 5 boosted effective labor supply and job growth—as it did in July and August in states that ended federal benefits early." As a result, Goldman is assuming a 200k boost in tomorrow’s numbers and a larger boost in October. The bank also believes the reopening of schools contributed to September job growth, by around 150k. Despite these tailwinds, Big Data employment signals were mixed, and dining activity rebounded only marginally. Labor market proxies have been constructive for the month: ADP’s gauge of payrolls surprised to the upside, although analysts continue to note that the direct relationship between the official data and the ADP’s gauge is tenuous, despite the gap being under 100k over the last three reports. The number of initial jobless claims and continuing claims has eased back between the survey periods of the August and September jobs data, although analysts note that more recent releases have shown an uptick in claims potentially clouding the outlook. The ISM business surveys have signaled employment growth in the month, with manufacturing employment rising into growth territory again, but services sector hiring cooled a little in the month, but remains expansionary; survey commentary continues to allude to a tight labour market. The Bureau of Labor Statistics will release the September employment situation report at 13:30BST/08:30EDT on October 8th. POLICY: The September jobs report might have reduced relevance on trading conditions given that Fed officials have effectively confirmed that, barring a collapse in the jobs data, it is on course to announce a tapering of its asset purchases at the November 3rd meeting. Accordingly, trading risks may be skewed to the downside, rather than to the upside, where a significant payrolls miss may present obstacles to the Fed announcing its taper. Additionally, it is worth being cognizant of how efforts in Washington to raise the debt ceiling are progressing; as yet, officials have not struck a deal, and are in the process of enacting stop gap legislation to allow funding into December; some analysts suggest that the Fed may be reticent to tighten policy in the face of potential default risks. PAYROLLS: The consensus looks for 500k nonfarm payrolls to be added to the US economy in September (prev. 235k), which would be a cooler rate of growth than the three- and six-month average rate, though in line with the 12-month average (3-month average is 750k/month, the six-month average is 653k/month, and the 12-month average is 503k/month – that technically at least suggests an improving rate of payrolls growth in recent months). Aggregating the nonfarm payrolls data since March 2020, around 5.33mln Americans remain out of work relative to pre-pandemic levels. MEASURES OF SLACK: The Unemployment Rate is expected at 5.1% (prev. 5.2%); Labour Force Participation previously at 61.7% vs 63.2% pre-pandemic; U6 measure of underemployment was previously at 8.8% vs 7.0% prepandemic; Employment-population ratio was previously 58.5% vs 61.1% pre-pandemic. These measures of slack are likely to provide more insight into how Fed officials are judging labour market progress, with many in recent months noting that they are closely watching the Underemployment Rate, Participation Rate, and the Employment-Population Ratio for a better handle on the level of slack that remains in the economy. Analysts would be encouraged the closer these get to pre-pandemic levels. EARNINGS: Average Hourly Earnings expected at +0.4% M/M (prev. +0.6%); Average Hourly Earnings expected at +4. 6% Y/Y (prev. +4.3%); Average Workweek Hours expected at 34.7hrs (prev. 34.7hrs). Aggregating the nonfarm payrolls data since March 2020, around 5.33mln Americans still remain out of work relative to pre-pandemic levels. ADP: The ADP National Employment Report showed 568k jobs added to the US economy in September, topping expectations for 428k, and a better pace than the prior 340k (revised down from 374k initially reported). ADP itself said that the labor market recovery continued to make progress despite the marked slowdown in the rate of job additions from the 748k pace seen in Q2. It also noted that Leisure & Hospitality remained one of the biggest beneficiaries to the recovery, though said that hiring was still heavily impacted by the trajectory of the pandemic, especially for small firms. ADP thinks that the current bottlenecks in hiring will likely fade as the pandemic situation continues to improve, and that could set the stage for solid job gains in the months ahead. On the data methodology, analysts continue to note that ADP's model incorporates much of the prior official payrolls data, other macroeconomic variables, as well as data from its own payrolls platform; "Payrolls were soft in August, thanks to the hit to the services sector from the Delta variant, and that weakness likely constrained ADP data," Pantheon Macroeconomics said. "The overshoot to consensus, therefore, suggests that the other inputs to ADP’s model were stronger than we expected, but none of the details are published, so we don’t know if the overshoot was model-driven or due to stronger employment data at ADP’s clients." INITIAL JOBLESS CLAIMS: Initial jobless claims data for the week that coincides with the BLS jobs report survey window saw claims at around 351k – little changed from the 349k for the August jobs data survey window – where analysts said seasonal factors played a role in boosting the weekly data, while there may have been some lingering Hurricane Ida effects; the corresponding continuing claims data has fallen to 2.802mln in the September survey period vs 2.908mln in the August survey period. In aggregate, the data continues to point to declining trend, although in recent weeks the level of jobless claims has been picking up again. BUSINESS SURVEYS: The Services and Manufacturing ISM reports showed divergent trends in September, with the service sector employment sub-index easing a little to 53.0 from 53.7, signalling growth but at a slower rate, while the manufacturing employment sub-index rose back into expansionary territory, printing 50.2 from 49.0 prior. On the manufacturing sector, ISM said companies were still struggling to meet labour-management plans, but noted some modest signs of progress compared to previous months: "Less than 5% of comments noted improvements regarding employment, compared to none in August," it said, "an overwhelming majority of panelists indicate their companies are hiring or attempting to hire," where around 85% of responses were about seeking additional staffing, while nearly half of the respondents expressed difficulty in filling positions, an increase from August. "The increasing frequency of comments on turnover rates and retirements continued a trend that began in August," ISM said. Meanwhile, in the services sector, employment activity rose for a third straight month; respondents noted that employees were flocking to better-paying jobs and there was a lack of pipeline to replace these staff, while other respondents talked of labor shortages being experienced at all levels. ARGUING FOR A BETTER-THAN-EXPECTED REPORT: End of federal enhanced unemployment benefits. The expiration of federal benefits in some states boosted labor supply and job-finding rates over the summer, and all remaining such programs expired on September 5. The July and August indicated a cumulative 6pp boost to job-finding probabilities from June to August for workers losing $300 top-up payments and a 12pp boost for workers losing all benefits. Some of the 6mn workers who lost some or all benefits on September 5 got a job by September 18—in time to be counted in tomorrow’s data. Goldman assumes a +200k boost to job growth from this channel, with a larger increase in subsequent reports (+1.3mn cumulatively by year end). School reopening. The largest 100 school districts are all open for in-person learning, catalyzing the return of many previously furloughed teachers and support staff. While full normalization of employment levels would contribute 600k jobs (mom sa, see left panel of the chart below), some janitors and support staff did not return due to hybrid teaching models, and job openings in the sector are only 200k above the pre-crisis level (see right panel). Relatedly, the BLS’s seasonal factors already embed the usual rehiring of education workers on summer layoff, so if fewer janitors returned to work than in a typical September, this would reduce seasonally adjusted job growth, other things equal. Taken together, assume a roughly 150k boost from the reopening of schools in tomorrow’s report. Job availability. The Conference Board labor differential—the difference between the percent of respondents saying jobs are plentiful and those saying jobs are hardto get - edged down to 42.5 from 44.4, still an elevated level. Additionally, JOLTS job openings increased by 749k in July to a new record high of 10.9mn. ADP. Private sector employment in the ADP report increased by 568k in September, above consensus expectations for a 430k gain, implying strong growth in the underlying ADP sample. Additionally, schools generally do not use ADP payroll software, arguing for a larger gain from school reopening in the official payroll measure. ARGUING FOR A WEAKER-THAN-EXPECTED REPORT: Delta variant. Rebounding covid infection rates weighed on services consumption and the labor market in August. And while US case counts began to decline in early September, restaurant seatings on Open Table rebounded only marginally. leisure and hospitality employment rose in September, but probably not at the ~400k monthly pace of June and July. Employer surveys. The employment components of our business surveys were flat to down, whereas we and consensus forecast a pickup in job growth. Goldman's services survey employment tracker remained unchanged at 54.5 and the manufacturing survey employment tracker declined 0.4pt to 57.8. And while the Goldman Sachs Analyst Index (GSAI) decreased 0.8% to 68.5, the employment component rose1.9% to 71.9. NEUTRAL FACTORS: Big Data. High-frequency data on the labor market were mixed between the August and September survey weeks, on net providing little guidance about the underlying pace of job growth. Three of the five measures tracked indicate an at-or-above-consensus gain (Census Small Business Pulse +0.5mn, ADP +0.6mn,Google mobility +2mn), but the Homebase data was an outlier to the downside. At face value, it would indicate a large outright decline in payrolls. The Census Household Pulse (-0.6mn) was also quite weak, though encouragingly, it also indicated a large drop in childcare-related labor supply headwinds as schools reopened. Seasonality. The September seasonal hurdle is relatively low: the BLS adjustment factors generally assume a 600-700k decline in private payrolls (which exclude public schools), compared to around -100k on average in July and August. Continued labor shortages encouraged firms to lay off fewer workers at the end of summer. Partially offsetting this tailwind, the September seasonal factors may have evolved unfavorably due to the crisis—specifically by fitting to last September’s reopening-driven job surge (private payrolls +932k mom sa). Jobless claims. Initial jobless claims fell during the September payroll month, averaging 339k per week vs. 378k in August despite a boost from individuals transitioning or attempting to transition to state programs. Across all employee programs including emergency benefits, continuing claims fell dramatically (-3.3mn)–but again for non-economic reasons (federal enhanced programs expired). Continuing claims in regular state programs decreased 106k from survey week to survey week. Job cuts. Announced layoffs reported by Challenger, Gray & Christmas rebounded 11% month-over-month in September after decreasing by 14% over the prior two months (SA by GS). Nonetheless, layoffs remain near the three-decade low on this measure (in 1993). Tyler Durden Thu, 10/07/2021 - 20:10.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytOct 7th, 2021

Here"s Why You Should Add DexCom (DXCM) Stock to Your Portfolio

Investors continue to be optimistic about DexCom (DXCM) owing to its slew of favorable coverage decisions for its G6 CGM System. DexCom, Inc. DXCM has been gaining on the back of its slew of favorable coverage decisions for its G6 CGM System over the past few months. A robust second-quarter 2021 performance, along with a solid international foothold, is expected to contribute further. However, stiff competition and reimbursement risks persist.Over the past year, this Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock has gained 39.8% compared with 27.9% rise of the S&P 500 composite. The industry fell 2.3% in the said time frame.The renowned medical devices company and provider of continuous glucose monitoring (“CGM”) systems has a market capitalization of $52.42 billion. The company projects 15.3% growth for the next five years and expects to maintain its strong performance. DexCom’s earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimates in three of the trailing four quarters and broke even in one, delivering an earnings surprise of 32.52%, on average.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchLet’s delve deeper.Favorable Coverage Decisions: We are upbeat about the slew of favorable coverage decisions for DexCom’s G6 CGM System over the past few months. The company, in September, announced that people with type 1 diabetes who are of 25 years of age or below may now be eligible for provincial coverage of the G6 CGM System via Manitoba Health and Seniors Care. Manitoba joins the ranks of British Columbia, Yukon, Quebec and Saskatchewan in regard to providing public coverage of CGM systems under provincial health plans.The same month, DexCom announced that its G6 CGM System is now covered by the Non-Insured Health Benefits Program for diabetics aged between two and 19 requiring intensive insulin therapy.Solid International Foothold: We are optimistic about DexCom’s continued focus on international markets. In second-quarter 2021, the company registered strong international year-over-year revenues. During the quarter, international growth was broad-based throughout all markets, including core markets like Germany, the U.K., Canada, Australia and the Nordic region. DexCom’s international market expansion initiatives are all progressing according to plan, thereby driving high volume growth. Therefore, international growth remains strong and presents great opportunity for the future, backed by improving global access and awareness.Strong Q2 Results: DexCom’s solid second-quarter 2021 results buoy optimism. Impressive contribution from the Sensor and other revenue segments, and domestic and international revenue growth were key catalysts. DexCom’s prospects in alternative markets, such as the non-intensive diabetes management space, are likely to provide it a competitive edge in the MedTech space. Apart from making continued advancements with respect to key strategic objectives, the company ended the quarter with new patient additions as well. DexCom’s slew of tie-ups and buyouts are encouraging. Expansion in both gross and operating margins is also a positive.DownsidesReimbursement Risk: Reimbursement risk is somewhat high due to the efforts to control healthcare expenses. The company has noted that most of the Type 1 patients (above 65) pay 100% of their CGM costs out of their own pockets. Unless payers (both government and private insurers) provide sufficient coverage and reimbursement, commercial success for DexCom will be limited, in our view.Stiff Competition: The market for blood glucose monitoring devices is highly competitive, subject to rapid change and significantly affected by new product introductions. DexCom’s competitors manufacture and market products for the single-point finger stick device market, and collectively account for substantially all of the worldwide sales of self-monitored glucose testing systems, currently.Estimate TrendDexCom is witnessing a positive estimate revision trend for 2021. In the past 90 days, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for its earnings has moved 13.4% north to $2.46.The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the company’s third-quarter 2021 revenues is pegged at $612.2 million, suggesting a 22.2% improvement from the year-ago quarter’s reported number.Other Key PicksA few other top-ranked stocks from the broader medical space are AMN Healthcare Services Inc AMN, Omnicell, Inc. OMCL and West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc. WST, each carrying a Zacks Rank #2. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.AMN Healthcare’s long-term earnings growth rate is estimated at 10.5%.Omnicell’s long-term earnings growth rate is estimated at 16%.West Pharmaceutical’s long-term earnings growth rate is estimated at 27.3%. Breakout Biotech Stocks with Triple-Digit Profit Potential The biotech sector is projected to surge beyond $2.4 trillion by 2028 as scientists develop treatments for thousands of diseases. They’re also finding ways to edit the human genome to literally erase our vulnerability to these diseases. Zacks has just released Century of Biology: 7 Biotech Stocks to Buy Right Now to help investors profit from 7 stocks poised for outperformance. Recommendations from previous editions of this report have produced gains of +205%, +258% and +477%. The stocks in this report could perform even better.See these 7 breakthrough stocks 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 Omnicell, Inc. (OMCL): Free Stock Analysis Report DexCom, Inc. (DXCM): Free Stock Analysis Report AMN Healthcare Services Inc (AMN): Free Stock Analysis Report West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc. (WST): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksOct 7th, 2021

Here"s everything Biden has done so far to address the $1.7 trillion student debt crisis

From extending the student-loan payment pause to cancelling student debt for some borrowers, here's everything Biden has done on student debt to date. Since Biden took office, he's taken a number of actions to address the $1.7 trillion student-debt crisis. They include cancelling debt for borrowers with disabilities and extending the payment pause on loans. Democrats are pushing for him to cancel $50,000 in student debt per person, which the DOJ is reviewing. See more stories on Insider's business page. Forty-five million Americans have a $1.7 trillion student-debt burden in the country. And many of them, alongside Democrats and advocates, want President Joe Biden to forgive $50,000 of their debt.He hasn't done that yet, but the president has taken steps to lessen the burden and provide relief during the pandemic.As one of his first actions in office, Biden extended the pause on student-loan payments through September, coupled with zero growth in interest, to ensure borrowers suffering financially would not have to worry about paying off their loans. That is now running through January 2022.Since then, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona has cancelled billions in student debt for borrowers with disabilities and borrowers defrauded by for-profit schools. He's also started conducting reviews of student loan forgiveness programs that don't work as they should.But Democrats want Biden to do more.They have been keeping the pressure on the president to cancel $50,000 in student debt per person using his executive authority. Biden has expressed hesitancy to do so, and although he has asked the Education and Justice Departments to review his executive abilities to wipe out that debt, Democrats remain adamant that he can, and should, cancel student debt immediately with the flick of a pen."Student loan cancellation could occur today," Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren told Insider. "The president just needs to sign a piece of paper canceling that debt. It doesn't take any act of Congress or any amendment to the budget."Detailed below is everything Biden has done to date to confront the student debt crisis: Extended the pause on student-loan payments Evan Vucci/AP On his first day in office, Biden asked the Education Department to extend the pause on federal student loan payments through September 30, following Education Secretary Betsy DeVos' extension of it through the end of January 2020. This was accompanied by a 0% interest rate during that time period.National Economic Council Director Brian Deese said at the time that the extension would alleviate burdens on many households. "In this moment of economic hardship, we want to reduce the burden of these financial trade-offs," Deese said.This extension, however did not apply to the more than 7 million borrowers with loans held by private companies. In August, nearly two months before the pause was set to expire, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona announced the pause would be extended through January 31, 2022. This is the fourth extension of the pause during the pandemic, and Cardona said in a statement that it will be the "final" one."The payment pause has been a lifeline that allowed million of Americans to focus on their families, health, and finances  instead of student loans during the national emergency," Cardona said.The announcement of the extension was welcomed by many Democrats and advocacy groups who have been pushing for additional student debt relief for borrowers. Expanded the scope of the student loan payment pause Reuters/Andrew Burton Biden's payments pause on student loans initially only applied to borrowers with federal loans, meaning those with privately-held loans had to continue making payments during the pandemic.But on March 29, Cardona expanded the scope of that pause to apply to loans under the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program, which are privately held. This helped 1.14 million additional borrowers. The FFEL Program ended in 2010, but according to Education Department data, 11.2 million borrowers still have outstanding FFEL loans totaling over $248 billion. And while the department acquired some of the outstanding FFEL loans, many are still privately owned and were not affected by the earlier pause on federally owned student loan payments.According to a press release, any FFEL borrower who made a payment in the past year will have the option to request a refund.  Asked the Justice and Education Departments to review his authority to cancel student debt REUTERS / Jonathan Ernst At a CNN town hall in February, Biden said he doesn't have the executive authority to cancel up to $50,000 in student debt per person, but said he is prepared to cancel $10,000 — something he campaigned on. The same month, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters that Biden will ask the Justice Department to review his legal authority to cancel $50,000 in student debt. Biden's administration has not yet commented on the status of the Justice Department's review.However, Insider reported that he has yet to deliver on that campaign promise, and while Biden said he would support legislation brought to him to cancel $10,000 in student debt, Democrats argue that legislation takes too long, and the president can cancel debt immediately using his executive authority."We have a lot on our plate, including moving to infrastructure and all kinds of other things," Warren said in a February press call. "I have legislation to do it, but to me, that's just not a reason to hold off. The president can do this, and I very much hope that he will."And White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain told Politico in April that Biden had asked Cardona to create a memo on the president's legal authority to forgive $50,000 in student loans per person.Biden will "look at that legal authority," Klain said. "He'll look at the policy issues around that, and he'll make a decision. He hasn't made a decision on that either way, and, in fact, he hasn't yet gotten the memos that he needs to start to focus on that decision." Reversed a DeVos methodology for determining loan forgiveness Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. Alex Wong/Getty Images On March 18, Cardona reversed a Trump-era policy that gave only partial relief to defrauded students.The debt-cancellation methodology, known as the "borrower defense to repayment" — approved by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos — compared the median earnings of graduates with debt-relief claims to the median earnings of graduates in comparable programs. The bigger the difference, the more relief the applicant would receive.But compared to a 99.2% approval rate for defrauded claims filed under President Barack Obama, DeVos had a 99.4% denial rate for borrowers and ran up a huge backlog of claims from eligible defrauded borrowers seeking student debt forgiveness.Cardona said that process did not result in appropriate relief determination and needed to be reversed, and a judge recently ruled that DeVos must testify over why so few borrowers were approved for loan forgiveness. Cancelled student debt for some defrauded borrowers Nirat.pix/Getty Images So far, Cardona has cancelled over $2.6 billion in student debt for borrowers defrauded by for-profit schools.For-profit institutions that shut down years ago, such as Corinthian Colleges and ITT Technical Institutes, were accused of violating federal law by persuading their students to take out loans, and Cardona's new policy helped approximately 72,000 of those students receive $1 billion in loan cancellation in March."Borrowers deserve a simplified and fair path to relief when they have been harmed by their institution's misconduct," Cardona said in a statement. "A close review of these claims and the associated evidence showed these borrowers have been harmed and we will grant them a fresh start from their debt."On June 16, Cardona cancelled student debt for 18,000 additional borrowers defrauded by ITT Technical Institutes, totaling to about $500 million in debt relief.The Education Department announced in a press release that 18,000 borrowers who attended ITT Tech will get 100% of their student debt forgiven, and the department will begin notifying borrowers of their approvals for loan forgiveness in the coming weeks and will work quickly to discharge those borrowers' loan balances."Our action today will give thousands of borrowers a fresh start and the relief they deserve after ITT repeatedly lied to them," Cardona said in a statement.An additional 115,000 defrauded ITT borrowers got $1.1 billion in student debt relief on August 26, applicable for those who did not complete their degree and left ITT on or after March 31, 2008.And in the first time since 2017 that borrower defense claims have been approved for borrowers outside of ITT Tech, Corinthian Colleges, and American Career Institute, on July 9, Cardona cancelled student debt for 1,800 borrowers who attended the for-profit schools Westwood College, Marinello Schools of Beauty, and the Court Reporting Institute. Cancelled student debt for some borrowers with disabilities Getty Images / Dan Kitwood On March 29, Cardona cancelled $1.3 billion of student debt for about 41,000 borrowers with disabilities.He also waived an Obama-era requirement for those borrowers to submit documentation during a three-year monitoring period to verify that their incomes did not exceed the poverty line of $12,880 annually for a single person.A 2016 report from the Government Accountability Office found that 98% of reinstated disability discharges occurred because borrowers did not submit the required documentation — not because their incomes were too high."Borrowers with total and permanent disabilities should focus on their well-being, not put their health on the line to submit earnings information during the COVID-19 emergency," Cardona said in a statement. "Waiving these requirements will ensure no borrower who is totally and permanently disabled risks having to repay their loans simply because they could not submit paperwork."But experts said this action did not make up for the significant number of borrowers who never received loan forgiveness simply due to paperwork."Today's announcement is not cause for celebration but rather for outrage," Persis Yu, the director of the Student Loan Borrower Assistance Project at the National Consumer Law Center, said in a statement at the time. "It is scandalous that the Department revoked the loan discharges for 41,000 borrowers with total and permanent disabilities due to paperwork issues during a pandemic."Then, on August 19, Cardona wiped out student debt for 323,000 additional borrowers with disabilities, resulting in $5.8 billion in student-debt relief, and he "indefinitely" waived the requirement to provide proof of income."We've heard loud and clear from borrowers with disabilities and advocates about the need for this change and we are excited to follow through on it," Cardona said. "This change reduces red tape with the aim of making processes as simple as possible for borrowers who need support."Cardona also said the department will consider further waiving the three-year monitoring period. Started a review of student-loan forgiveness programs Suzanne Kreiter/The Boston Globe via Getty Images On May 24, the Education Department announced it is beginning the process of issuing new higher education regulations, mainly concerning student debt-forgiveness programs. The first step of the process will be through holding hearings in June to receive feedback on "regulations that would address gaps in postsecondary outcomes, such as retention, completion, student loan repayment, and loan default," according to a press release.The department will also seek comments on rules regarding student loan forgiveness for borrowers in public service and borrowers with disabilities, among other things.The main topics the department plans to address concern the methods for forgiving debt for defrauded borrowers and borrowers with disabilities, along with looking into the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, which has rejected 98% of eligible borrowers. Forbes reported that the process to implement new rules could be lengthy, though. After the hearings in June, there will be "negotiated rulemaking," during which stakeholders meet with the department to review proposed regulations, and it could take a year or longer until changes are implemented. Biden's regulatory agenda also included plans to review loan forgiveness programs, but Insider reported on June 15 that details for those reviews remain unclear, and an Education Department spokesperson told Insider there is not yet a timeline for when improvements will be implemented.  Waived interest on student loans for service members Members of the United States Marine Corps stand listening to the 45th President Donald J. Trump's address of the crowd for the opening ceremony of the New York City 100th annual Veterans Day Parade and wreath-laying at the Eternal Light Flag Staff. Ira L. Black/Corbis via Getty Images The Education Department announced on August 20 that 47,000 former and active-duty service members will get the interest on their student loans retroactively waived.The relief will happen automatically, removing the requirement for service members to make individual requests to access the benefit, which, according to the press release, will make service members eight times more likely to receive the benefit than in 2019."Brave men and women in uniform serving our country can now focus on doing their jobs and coming home safely, not filling out more paperwork to access their hard-earned benefits," FSA Chief Operating Officer Richard Cordray said in a statement. "Federal Student Aid is grateful for our strong partnership with the Department of Defense, and we will seek to reduce red tape for service members wherever possible."Service members deployed to areas that qualify them for "imminent danger or hostile fire pay," according to the Higher Education Act, should not accrue interest on student loans that were first disbursed on or after October 1, 2008. But since the process was not previously automated, only a small proportion of eligible service members were able to access the benefit, with only about 4,800 of them getting relief in 2019. Overhauled a student-loan forgiveness program for public servants Andreas Rentz/Getty Images The Education Department on October 6 announced a major overhaul of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program. It's supposed to wipe out student debt for public servants after 120 qualifying monthly payments, but to date it has rejected 98% of applicants due to deep flaws within the program.According to the department's press release, it will implement a limited-time waiver through October 31, 2022, that will allow borrowers to count payments from any federal loan programs or repayment plans toward loan forgiveness through PSLF, including programs and plans that were not previously eligible.The department said this waiver alone would bring 550,000 borrowers closer to student-debt relief automatically, including 22,000 borrowers who will be immediately eligible for relief without any action on their part, totaling $1.74 billion in forgiveness. An additional 27,000 borrowers could also qualify for $2.82 billion in forgiveness if they certify additional periods of employment."Borrowers who devote a decade of their lives to public service should be able to rely on the promise of Public Service Loan Forgiveness," Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said in a statement. "The system has not delivered on that promise to date, but that is about to change for many borrowers who have served their communities and their country."Other changes, to be rolled out in the next few months, include making payments easier to qualify for the program and reviewing denied applications and correcting errors. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 6th, 2021

15 questions to ask about perks and benefits before accepting a job offer

Besides the basics like health insurance, ask your potential new employer if they offer mentorship programs or tuition reimbursement. Job seekers should always understand perks and benefits before accepting a job. Getty Images When you're interviewing for a new job, be sure to learn what perks and benefits the company offers. Ask about healthcare coverage, dental and vision insurance, and remote work flexibility. Some employers offer on-the-job training, while others even offer tuition reimbursement for continuing education. See more stories on Insider's business page. Once you've found a job and company that you're really excited about, salary might top your list of priorities. But while salary is important, it's only part of the overall offer. To get the full scope of what you'll really earn at a job, you need to factor in the perks and benefits that a company offers, too."Look at it as more of a package than just a job with a paycheck," said Leslie Slay, senior vice president of employee benefits services at Woodruff Sawyer, an insurance brokerage and consulting firm.Compensation traditionally includes non-salary benefits like health insurance and retirement plans. And many companies also offer perks - including flexible schedules, educational opportunities, and wellness programs - to support employees in other ways. "More and more, perks and benefits are becoming integrated together" to support employees in a more holistic way, said Bobbi Kloss, director of human capital management services at Benefit Advisors Network.On average, a benefits package makes up about 30% of an employee's total compensation in the US. So it's definitely worth paying attention to the perks and benefits a company offers as you're looking for a job in addition to the salary.Employee benefits and perks can be confusing, though. In fact, about a third of all workers and 54% of millennials said they don't understand the employee benefits they signed up for, according to a 2020 survey by Voya Financial. So as a job seeker it's often up to you to ask a prospective employer plenty of questions to make sure the benefits they're offering meet your needs.Better understanding the benefits and perks you're offered will help you make the best choice about which job offer to accept. To help guide you, here's an overview of 15 common employee perks and benefits you might come across as you look for your next job:1. Health insuranceHealth insurance pays (or helps pay) for your medical expenses as they come up in exchange for a premium, or money paid - by you and/or your employer - to the insurance provider each month. Health insurance plans typically cover doctor visits, prescription drugs, emergency care, and certain medical procedures.Health insurance plans vary from company to company and you'll likely have a few to choose from. Some companies pay the full premium on their employee's behalf, but usually, you have to contribute to the cost with a certain amount that comes out of your paycheck before taxes. You may have some other out-of-pocket expenses, too, such as copays when you visit your doctor. Many insurance plans also have a deductible, which is an amount of money you're responsible for paying before your health coverage kicks in. Make sure you're aware of these costs before you choose a plan to enroll in.And to ensure a company plan meets your needs, Kloss suggests checking that it covers treatments for any medical conditions you have or prescription medications you take and that your preferred doctors are in the plan's network.If you have dependents (most commonly children or a partner you support financially) or plan to soon, you should also check that the plan will cover everyone and how much it will cost you. For example, a company may pay 100% of your health insurance premium but you may be stuck paying the full premium for everyone else in your family (which can add up fast). Read more about what all those health insurance terms mean here.Find jobs at companies that offer health insurance2. Dental and vision insuranceDental and vision insurance cover your dental and eye-care needs. Dental insurance typically covers routine exams, cleanings, x-rays, and some portion of procedures like root canals and fillings. Vision insurance generally covers eye exams and prescription lenses.Many employers offer dental and vision insurance, either as part of health insurance or as separate benefits. But whereas some employers cover a portion or all of the costs of health insurance, most companies require you to pay in full for dental and vision insurance, Slay said.Just as you would with health insurance, check if the plans will let you keep your dentist and eye doctor (if you'd rather not switch) and cover any pre-existing conditions or treatments that you need.Find jobs at companies that offer dental insurance, vision insurance, or both3. Flexible spending accountA flexible spending account (FSA) allows you to put pre-tax money aside to pay for the year's out-of-pocket healthcare costs, like over-the-counter medications, copays for doctor visits, medical devices like crutches or blood sugar tests, or vision and dental care needs like glasses or contacts.Your employer may also contribute up to $500 to your FSA without you contributing anything (they can match you dollar for dollar on top of the $500), so be sure to check if a company will pay into your account before determining your own contributions. Total FSA contributions are capped at a certain amount each year (for example, they were capped at $2,750 for 2021).Find jobs at companies that offer FSA accounts4. Life insuranceLife insurance is an insurance policy that pays a set amount of money to your chosen beneficiary (or beneficiaries) when you die. If you're just starting your career and don't have any children or others who depend on you financially, life insurance may not seem necessary. But it's still something you should consider, Slay said - especially if your company covers your full premium.You decide who you want to leave the money to, such as your parents or another family member, to help cover funeral costs, for example. You could even name your favorite charity as the beneficiary.Find jobs at companies that offer life insurance5. Disability insuranceDisability insurance offers compensation or income replacement when you're unable to work because of an injury or illness that's not job-related. "I can't tell you how critical disability insurance is; it protects your paycheck," Slay said. Disability insurance is usually optional, but worth looking into, she said - just find out what your employer offers and what it will cost you. Some policies are fully paid by an employer and others require you to pay some of the costs in the form of a paycheck deduction, Slay said.There are two types of disability insurance: short term and long term. Short-term disability insurance varies according to your plan, but typically covers you if you're out of work for less than six months and on average pays about 60% of your regular salary, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Most long-term disability insurance lasts for 10 years or less (but some policies last until you reach retirement age) and covers about 60% of your annual earnings.Find jobs at companies that offer short-term disability insurance, long-term disability insurance, or both6. 401(k)sA 401(k) is a retirement-savings plan that's commonly sponsored by your employer. Plans can vary, but generally, you contribute to the fund as a pre-tax paycheck deduction and pay taxes on the money when you withdraw it during retirement. Many companies match employees' 401(k) contributions, either dollar for dollar, where they put in what you put in, or with a partial match - for example, adding 50 cents for every dollar you contribute, up to a certain percentage of your salary. Yearly employee 401(k) contributions are capped (the limit is $19,500 for 2021), but the employer match doesn't count toward the limit.Retirement may seem like a long time away. But Slay urges early-career employees to contribute as much as they can to their 401(k), especially if there's an employer match. The match can help you grow your savings faster and if you're not taking advantage of it, you're essentially leaving money on the table that your employer is offering to give you. Plus, in an emergency, you may be able to pull money out of your 401(k) before retirement (and without paying a tax penalty) for certain expenses, like buying a home or paying medical bills.Some companies have taken a new approach to employee retirement benefits recently to meet their workers' current needs, Slay said. For example, some help employees pay down student loan debt by making direct payments to their lender, while others make a larger 401(k) contribution to employees currently paying off student debt.Find jobs at companies that offer 401(k)s or 401(k)s with company match7. Paid time offPaid time off (PTO) can include paid holidays, sick leave, federal and state holidays, personal days, and vacation days.Typically, the amount of PTO offered by your company is based on how long you've worked for them, and you accrue more PTO over time (for example, if you get 15 days of PTO per year, that means you accrue about 0.058 hours of PTO for every hour you work, or roughly 10.5 hours of PTO per month). If, say, you're looking to start a new job right before a holiday or planned trip, you might want to ask the company if it has a policy about using PTO before you've technically accrued it.How a company offers PTO varies, too. For example, some designate a separate number of personal, sick, or vacation days, which is sometimes required by state law. But, Slay said, more employers are lumping all PTO in together to make taking off easier for employees. Some companies even offer unlimited PTO.Time off is an important factor in your overall compensation, so make sure to ask about how many PTO days you get. Often, you can negotiate your PTO, Slay said, particularly since the pandemic has shown more companies the benefits of giving their workers more time off. "PTO is one of those areas where you can ask for things that are a little different and you might get them." Also, be sure to check if you can carry over unused PTO into a new year and whether you'll be paid for any unused days when you leave the company.Find jobs at companies that offer paid holidays, paid vacation, personal and sick days, or unlimited vacation8. Family and medical leaveThe Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a US law that enables employees to take unpaid leave for certain family and medical reasons. Employees can take up to 12 weeks off for the birth or adoption of a child, a family member with a medical condition who needs care, their own health condition that prevents them from performing job functions, and other reasons.Under this law, your job is protected and your health insurance continues during this leave. Companies with more than 50 employees are required to comply with the law and you're eligible if you've worked for the company for at least 12 months and meet other requirements. If you're considering going to work for a smaller company, be sure to find out their policies for family and medical leave.Find jobs at companies with more than 50 employees9. Parental leaveParental leave enables employees to take off following the birth of a child, an adoption, or the arrival of a newly placed foster child, or for a child otherwise needing parental care, according to the US Department of Labor. Though the FMLA requires some employers to offer unpaid leave in these instances, there's no broad guarantee of parental leave in the US - which means it comes down to the employer.More than half of US employers offer paid new child leave to women, and 45% offer paid new child leave to men, according to a 2020 study by the Society for Human Resource Management and Oxford Economics. However, specific policies vary for the companies that do offer parental leave, so find out about a prospective employer's rules if you plan to start a family soon, Slay said. Ask whether the leave is paid or unpaid, whether your job will be there waiting for you when you return, and how much time off you're allowed.Find jobs at companies that offer maternity leave, paternity leave, or both10. Remote work optionsRemote work gives employees the freedom to work from home or anywhere else outside of a traditional office setting, either full-time or part-time in a hybrid schedule. The COVID-19 pandemic made remote work a necessity, and it was such a hit with workers that many have said they'll quit their jobs rather than go back to the office. Employers realize that remote work has benefits for them, too, such as opening up a much broader, more diverse talent pool to hire from, so many organizations plan to allow remote work in some fashion post-pandemic.While more employers will be offering fully or partially remote positions after the pandemic off the bat, the ability to work from home is something you can likely negotiate, Kloss said. "I think employers are recognizing after COVID that they can be more flexible in those areas than they ever thought possible." So find out whether you'll be able to work remotely some or all of the time and what the company's policies are for remote work schedules, virtual meetings, and communication. Also ask whether they provide equipment or stipends for internet, phone, or other expenses for remote workers.Find jobs at companies that offer remote work opportunities11. Flexible schedulesA flexible schedule is when your employer allows you to work hours and days outside of the traditional nine-to-five, Monday-to-Friday schedule. For instance, you might work 10 hours a day, four days a week or set core hours when you're available, such as 9 a.m to 1 p.m, and have flexibility the rest of the day to complete your work whenever you'd like. Like with remote work, the pandemic led more companies to offer flexible schedules to accommodate different work styles and time zones as well as employees who have children or other caretaking responsibilities. Flexible schedules are another perk that you can likely negotiate - just make sure you and your employer both come away with a clear idea of which days and times you'll work.Find jobs at companies that offer flexible work hours12. Wellness programsWorkplace wellness programs aim to improve an employee's mental and physical health and offer more resources beyond health insurance. Wellness programs have traditionally included health screenings and tools to help people lose weight or stop smoking, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.But organizations have taken a broader, more holistic approach to their wellness programs in recent years by offering individualized supports that take into account an employee's emotional, social, physical, and financial needs, Kloss said. Wellness-based perks-such as fitness subsidies, meals, and access to mental wellness apps and counseling - are becoming more common.Even more so than with other perks and benefits, wellness program offerings vary widely, so find out the specifics of what a company offers and consider how it meets your needs.Find jobs at companies that offer wellness programs, fitness subsidies, on-site gym, and meals13. Education benefitsMost companies offer some type of education benefit, including access to online courses, on-the-job training, tuition reimbursement for continuing education, and learning and development stipends to cover educational expenses.If you're just starting your career, these programs can help you succeed long term by keeping your skills fresh, which could increase your chances for promotions or raises, Slay said. Education benefits and perks also signal that a company values and invests in its employees and their growth. So be sure to ask what a company you're planning to work for offers if education is important to you.Find jobs at companies that offer access to online courses, tuition reimbursement, or learning and development stipends14. Mentor programsMentor programs pair you with someone at your company who's more experienced and can answer questions and offer guidance to help you advance in your career. "Mentorship is huge," Slay said. Mentors can serve as advocates to help you navigate the technical and political parts of a job as well as you build and expand your network.Mentorship programs help employees feel valued, create a culture of learning and increase job satisfaction and productivity, Slay said. So find out whether a company provides formal or informal mentoring and what their programs entail.Find jobs at companies that offer mentor programs15. Diversity, equity, and inclusion programsDiversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) programs and initiatives encourage the representation and participation of different and often underrepresented groups, such as women, people of color, people with disabilities, and the LGBTQ community. The programs may include mentorship opportunities, targeted recruitment efforts, and employee resource groups (ERGs).As with many employee benefits and perks, some DEI programs are more robust than others. So it's a good idea to find out the specifics of what a company offers and how it aligns with your values and needs, rather than just noting that they've ticked the box in offering a DEI program.Find jobs at companies that offer diversity and inclusion programsBefore you accept a job offer, make sure you have a good grasp of the company's benefits and perks and how they fit into your overall compensation structure. Ask plenty of questions to get all the details of how each benefit and perk aligns with your needs and negotiate to get what you want. Keep in mind, too, that when you're searching for open jobs on The Muse, you can set filters so you'll only see open positions at companies that offer the benefits and perks that matter most to you.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 6th, 2021

Stephanie Grisham said working for Trump gave her a "sick sense of pride" that she"s "not proud of"

"If people say they don't love the powerful feeling in there, they're lying," Grisham told New York Magazine. "It's kind of gross." National Security Advisor John R. Bolton and White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham listen as President Donald J. Trump participates in a meeting at the White House on July 9, 2019. Jabin Botsford/Getty Images Stephanie Grisham said working for Trump gave her "a sick sense of pride." "I'm not proud of that," she told New York Magazine. Grisham's new book about her time in Trump's White House came out on Tuesday. See more stories on Insider's business page. Stephanie Grisham, a veteran of Trump's White House who published a bombshell memoir on Tuesday, said in a new interview that being in the former president's orbit made her feel important.Grisham, who served on Trump's 2016 presidential campaign and later landed multiple gigs at the White House, told New York Magazine that when he won the Republican nomination, "a bunker mentality set in.""For people like me - and I'm not proud of this - you have a sick sense of pride," she told the news outlet in a report published on Tuesday. "All the people who told you how terrible he was? You're like, Oh? He's the nominee, buddy! I'm not proud of that."Before Trump, Grisham was involved in GOP politics and dreamed of working at the White House one day, New York Magazine reported. "I thought that they were the only ones who would ever get me there," Grisham said of Trump's circle.Grisham described a "lack of confidence in myself as a single mother" and said she accepted working with Trump because it seemed like her "only shot.""Nobody's gonna ever want me, really, but these people did. So I'll stick around," Grisham told New York Magazine.Soon after Trump took office in 2017, Grisham became former first lady Melania Trump's press secretary until July 2019. She then moved on to serve as White House press secretary and communications director. In her nine months in the public-facing post, she never held a press briefing. Grisham then returned to work for Melania Trump as chief of staff before she resigned in the aftermath of the Capitol insurrection on January 6.Grisham told New York Magazine that being in the White House made her "feel important" and "power hungry.""If people say they don't love the powerful feeling in there, they're lying. It's kind of gross. I'm not saying something nice about myself right now," she continued. "I was so proud that I was surviving over everyone else, and I had such a complex that I hadn't been let into the inner circle in the beginning, so once I was there, I took a lot of joy out of it."Grisham has recently expressed regrets over working for Trump, telling ABC News on Monday that it was a mistake.Grisham's comments come as her new book, "I'll Take Your Questions Now, details a slew of explosive allegations about the former president and first lady. Spokespersons for the Trumps have dismissed and pushed back on her claims. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 5th, 2021

Dexcom"s (DXCM) G6 CGM System Gets Coverage in Manitoba

Dexcom's (DXCM) CGM System is expected to simplify diabetes management due to increasing access to the life changing technology. Dexcom, Inc. DXCM recently announced that people with type 1 diabetes who are of 25 years of age or below may now be eligible for provincial coverage of the Dexcom G6 continuous glucose monitoring (“CGM”) System via Manitoba Health and Seniors Care. Users will now be able to order and pick up their Dexcom CGM supplies through their local pharmacy, as part of the Manitoba Health coverage program.For investors’ note, Manitoba joins the ranks of British Columbia, Yukon, Quebec and Saskatchewan in regard to providing public coverage of CGM systems under provincial health plans.With the latest favorable coverage decision, Dexcom is expected to solidify its foothold in the global CGM business.Few Words on Dexcom G6 CGMThe Dexcom G6 offers real-time alerts, including a predictive Urgent Low Soon alert, and can warn the user in advance of hypoglycemia (lower than normal blood sugar level), thus providing time to take appropriate action before it actually occurs. By using the Dexcom Follow App, parents and caregivers can also access the patient’s glucose levels remotely and be alerted if they are deviating from the target glucose range.Significance of the CoverageThe expanded public coverage for CGM is expected to provide access to the CGM technology, which has become a new standard of care for a greater number of patients, thereby enabling them to manage a life-long chronic ailment.Per management, the provision of coverage to the Dexcom G6 CGM by increasing number of provinces is likely to simplify diabetes management through real-time CGM and data-sharing. This, in turn, is expected to aid the diabetics and their care providers to prevent any untoward incident.Industry ProspectsPer a report by Grand View Research, the global CGM device market size was valued at $3,929.7 million in 2019 and is expected to reach $10.4 billion by 2027 at a CAGR of 12.7%. Factors like rising cases of diabetes and increasing adoption of CGM devices are likely to drive the market.Given the market potential, the latest coverage announcement is expected to provide a significant boost to Dexcom’s business globally.Notable DevelopmentsOf late, Dexcom has witnessed a few notable developments across its business.In September, the company, announced that its G6 CGM System is now covered by the Non-Insured Health Benefits Program for diabetics aged between two and 19 requiring intensive insulin therapy. The expanded coverage is expected to provide access to the system to a wider pool of First Nations and Inuit children and adolescents, thereby potentially enabling them to better manage the life-long chronic illness.Dexcom, in July, reported robust second-quarter 2021, where it witnessed strength in both its domestic and international revenues.The same month, the company received the FDA’s clearance for Dexcom Partner Web APIs, which will enable approved third-party developers to integrate real-time CGM data into their digital health apps and devices.Price PerformanceShares of the company have gained 43.8% in the past year compared with the industry’s 11.8% growth and the S&P 500's 29.6% rise.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchZacks Rank & Other Key PicksCurrently, Dexcom carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).A few other top-ranked stocks from the broader medical space are Henry Schein, Inc. HSIC, Omnicell, Inc. OMCL and West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc. WST.Henry Schein’s long-term earnings growth rate is estimated at 13.9%. The company presently carries a Zacks Rank #2. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.Omnicell’s long-term earnings growth rate is estimated at 16%. It currently has a Zacks Rank #2.West Pharmaceutical’s long-term earnings growth rate is estimated at 27.3%. It currently carries a Zacks Rank #2. 5 Stocks Set to Double Each was handpicked by a Zacks expert as the #1 favorite stock to gain +100% or more in 2021. Previous recommendations have soared +143.0%, +175.9%, +498.3% and +673.0%. Most of the stocks in this report are flying under Wall Street radar, which provides a great opportunity to get in on the ground floor.Today, See These 5 Potential Home Runs >>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 Omnicell, Inc. (OMCL): Free Stock Analysis Report Henry Schein, Inc. (HSIC): Free Stock Analysis Report DexCom, Inc. (DXCM): Free Stock Analysis Report West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc. (WST): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksOct 4th, 2021

Futures Slide On Evergrande, Stagflation, Energy Crisis Fears

Futures Slide On Evergrande, Stagflation, Energy Crisis Fears Stock futures ticked lower on Monday, hurt by weakening sentiment in Asia and Europe amid growing worries about economic stagflation, the global energy crisis and renewed fears about property developer China Evergrande whose stock was halted overnight in Hong Kong, while Tesla shares rose after reporting a record number of electric vehicle deliveries. At 715 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were down 114 points, or 0.33%, S&P 500 e-minis were down 16.25 points, or 0.37%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 73.75 points, or 0.5%. “The global chip and energy shortage is getting worse, the inflation is rising, the recovery may be slowing, and that puts central banks between a rock and a hard place,” Ipek Ozkardeskaya, a senior analyst at Swissquote, wrote in a note. “The best they could do is to do nothing, or to tighten their monetary policy to avoid losing control on the economy.” The most notable overnight event was the suspension of trading in shares of debt-laden Evergrande which unsettled markets further about any fallout from its troubles even as media reports said the company would sell a stake in its property management unit for over $5 billion. Wall Street’s main indexes were battered in September, hit by worries about the U.S. debt ceiling, the fate of a massive infrastructure spending bill and the meltdown of heavily indebted China Evergrande Group. On the second trading day of October, investors took a defensive stance, with a cautious approach to riskier assets as a spreading energy crunch meets concerns over the duration of broader rising prices and the tapering of economic stimulus efforts. Investors also kept close watch on rising U.S. Treasury yields after data last week showed increased consumer spending, accelerated factory activity and elevated inflation growth, which could help push the Federal Reserve towards tightening its accommodative monetary policy sooner than expected. Among individual stocks, Merck & Co. extended its gains from Friday on the results of its experimental Covid pill. The stock climbed 2.6% premarket. 3M shares fell 1.5% after J.P. Morgan cut its rating on the industrial conglomerate’s stock to “neutral” from “overweight”.  Here are some of the other notable premarket movers today: Tesla (TSLA  US) shares climb 2.6% higher in U.S. premarket trading after the electric car maker reported record 3Q deliveries that easily beat estimates Amplify Energy (AMPY US) shares plummet 33% in premarket trading after California beaches in northern Orange County were closed and wetlands contaminated by a huge oil spill caused by a broken pipeline off the coast DHT Holdings (DHT US) shares rose as much as 3.7% in Friday extended trading after the company said it bought 1.23m of its own shares Offerpad Solutions (OPAD US) was down 3.1% Friday postmarket after registering shares for potential sale Adverum Biotechnologies (ADVM US) shares rose as much as 23% in Friday extended trading after co. reported new long-term data from the OPTIC clinical trial of ADVM-022 single, in-office intravitreal injection gene therapy Markets also awaited U.S. Joe Biden’s new plan on China trade strategy, with U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai set for new talks with Beijing later in the day over its failure to keep promises made in a “Phase 1” trade deal struck with former President Donald Trump. Biden's new plan follows a top-to-bottom review of import tariffs and other measures imposed by the Trump administration; reports also said that USTR will today say that China is not complying with the Phase 1 deal. Europe's Stoxx 600 Index trades flat, erasing earlier losses of as much as 0.6%, helped by gains in health care and basic resources shares. The healthcare sub index rose 0.8% after AstraZeneca’s Enhertu got a breakthrough therapy designation while basic resources sub-index up 0.3% as iron ore rallies. Euro Stoxx 50 is down 0.2% having declined as much as 1% at the open. FTSE MIB lags on the recovery; FTSE 100 trades flat. Autos, banks and travel names are the weakest sectors. Here are some of the biggest European movers today: Adler Group shares jump as much as 18%, briefly erasing the previous week’s declines, after the firm said it’s reviewing strategic options that may result in a sale of assets Wm Morrison declines as much as 3.8% after the offer terms from winning bidder CD&R disappointed investors Sainsbury rises as much as 5.9% and Tesco gains 1.7% on speculation that CD&R’s Morrison deal may drive further interest in Britain’s grocery sector at a time when cash-rich buyout funds are stalking undervalued U.K. companies; also, a report says Tesco will announce a share buyback program this week Plus500 gains as much as 6.1% after the contracts-for-difference trading firm says full-year profit will beat market expectations Bewi rises as much as 9.9% after the owner of 50% of building products company Jackon Holding accepted Bewi’s offer BT slumps as much as 7.8% to a six-month low following a Telegraph report that Sky is closing in on a broadband investment deal with Virgin Media O2, raising worries over competition Azelio falls as much as 22% after newspaper Dagens Industri raised questions about orders for the renewable energy equipment developer Aryzta tumbles as much as 13% after results, halting a four-day winning streak Frasers falls as much as 12%, the most since December. Bank of America cut the owner of the Sports Direct retail chain to underperform from buy Asia stocks also declined, with Hong Kong shares a drag, after debt-ridden China Evergrande Group’s trading was suspended while investors also sold health care-related names and appeared wary heading into the final quarter of 2021. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index slipped as much as 0.8%. Vaccine maker CanSino Biologics and Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group were the biggest decliners on the measure as Merck & Co. said its experimental Covid-19 antiviral pill cuts the risk of hospitalization and death in half. “Investors will need to take a sell-first ask-later stance given current elevated valuation levels of vaccine stocks,” said Justin Tang, head of Asian research at United First Partners. Also weighing on traders’ minds is the global energy crisis, which has spread to India and is stoking inflation concerns. Speculation about the potential restructuring of China Evergrande Group, which has suspended trading of its Hong Kong shares, is also affecting sentiment at a time liquidity is thinner. The mainland Chinese market is closed through Thursday for Golden Week holidays. Singapore’s benchmark Straits Times Index was among the top-performing gauges in Asia Pacific as the country takes steps toward further reopening. Measures across the cyclicals-heavy Southeast Asian markets also rose, while tech stocks including Alibaba and Meituan took a hit. Asian assets will be sold alongside global peers in the short term, said Tai Hui, chief Asia market strategist at JPMorgan Asset Management. “But we think cyclical sectors, especially exporters, should also perform well for the rest of the year, especially as more Asian economies are seeing a rising level of vaccination,” he added. Japanese equities fell for a sixth-straight day, as investor concerns deepened over contagion from China’s real-estate sector woes on the suspension of trading in shares of Evergrande and its property management unit. Electronics makers were the biggest drag on the Topix, which declined 0.6%, capping its worst losing streak since February 2020. Tokyo Electron and Fanuc were the largest contributors to a 1.1% drop in the Nikkei 225. “It’s possible Evergrande news flow is impacting Japan stocks, the issues surrounding the property firm aren’t resolved,” said Mamoru Shimode, chief strategist at Resona Asset Management. “It’s also important to keep in mind markets overall have been in risk-off mood since the latter half of September.” Travel and retail stocks gained, following U.S. peers higher after promising results for Merck’s experimental Covid-19 pill and amid signs of a pick-up in Japanese department-store sales. Meanwhile, Fumio Kishida was appointed prime minister by parliament Monday, and was set to reveal a new cabinet lineup as he seeks to revive support for his ruling party ahead of a general election that could likely come this month. In rates, Treasuries are near session lows, the 10Y TSY pushing on 1.50% cheaper by ~3.5bp on the day and near middle of last week’s 1.44%-1.565% range in early U.S. session after erasing gains that pushed yields to lowest levels in a week. 5s30s curve at ~111.7bp is steeper by nearly 2bp, probing 50-DMA and approaching last week’s high. Gilts led the selloff during European morning as regional stocks recovered from a weak open. Curve steepens, with long-end yields cheaper by around 4bp vs Friday’s close.  Peripheral spreads widen with long end Italy underperforming. Semi-core spreads tighten at the margin. In FX, Bloomberg dollar index is little changed; NOK, CAD and CHF are the best performers in G-10, JPY lags but trading ranges are narrow. Crude futures hold slightly in the red in choppy trade. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was steady and the greenback traded in tight ranges against its Group-of-10 peers. The euro reversed a modest decline to trade above $1.16, while the pound hovered after touching its highest level in nearly a week during the Asia session. Expected volatility is now at the highest in five months. The currency fell to a year-to-date low last week amid concerns over soaring energy prices, falling business confidence and the end of the government’s furlough scheme. The Aussie dollar was flat and option markets aren’t expecting the RBA’s policy decision Tuesday to be an eventful one for spot. The yen inched lower after earlier touching a one-week high when concern over potential contagion from indebted Chinese developer Evergrande weighed on Japanese stocks. In commodities, WTI is down 0.25% near $75.70, Brent just 0.1% lower near $79.20 ahead of today’s OPEC+ virtual gathering. Spot gold drops ~$10 to test Friday’s low near $1,750/oz. Base metals trade well with LME aluminum and zinc rising over 1% to outperform peers. Bitcoin and cryptos dropped after a burst higher late on Sunday, following the China Evergrande suspension even though i) the news appears to be positive and is in relation to the latest asset sale and ii) China has banned trading in cryptos, so it wasn't exactly clear why any mainlanders would be selling to meet margin calls. On today's calendar, we get August factory orders, and the final August durable goods orders, core capital goods orders. We also get more central bank speakers including Fed's Bullard, BoE’s Ramsden, ECB Vice President de Guindos and ECB’s Makhlouf. Market Snapshot S&P 500 futures down 0.4% to 4,324.25 STOXX Europe 600 little changed at 453.24 MXAP down 0.5% to 194.02 MXAPJ down 0.3% to 629.26 Nikkei down 1.1% to 28,444.89 Topix down 0.6% to 1,973.92 Hang Seng Index down 2.2% to 24,036.37 Shanghai Composite up 0.9% to 3,568.17 Sensex up 1.1% to 59,391.71 Australia S&P/ASX 200 up 1.3% to 7,278.54 Kospi down 1.6% to 3,019.18 Brent Futures little changed at $79.22/bbl Gold spot down 0.5% to $1,752.29 U.S. Dollar Index little changed at 93.96 German 10Y yield rose 1.4 bps to -0.210% Euro up 0.1% to $1.1613 Top Overnight News from Bloomberg China Evergrande Group and its property-services arm were halted in Hong Kong stock trading amid a report that the developer agreed to sell a controlling stake in the unit to raise much- needed cash U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he won’t fall back on immigration to solve the U.K.’s truck driver shortage, as he presented supply chain troubles that have left supermarket shelves bare and gas stations dry as a “period of adjustment” in the wake of Brexit and the pandemic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi reset the clock on Saturday, giving lawmakers until Halloween to strike a deal on both the bipartisan $550 billion infrastructure deal and a broader, signature package of social spending, health care and tax measures they must pass with only Democratic votes Germany’s Social Democrats under chancellor-in-waiting Olaf Scholz signaled progress in talks with the Greens on forming a coalition government with the Free Democrats, while Angela Merkel’s bloc kept the door ajar for a conservative-led alliance Japan’s Fumio Kishida was appointed prime minister by parliament Monday, and is set to reveal a new cabinet lineup as he seeks to revive support for his ruling party ahead of a general election that could likely come this month. A more detailed look at global markets courtesy of Newsquawk Asian equity markets traded mixed as ongoing Evergrande default concerns clouded over the initial optimism following Friday’s rebound on Wall St where all major indices found some reprieve from last week’s downturn, although the S&P 500 still suffered its worst weekly performance since February and US equity futures also failed to hold on to opening gains with this week’s upcoming risk events adding to the cautiousness including the OPEC+ meeting later today, a bout of Asia-Pac central bank policy decisions from Tuesday and Friday’s NFP job data. The ASX 200 (+1.3%) outperformed, with the index unfazed by the absence of key market participants with mainland China away for Golden Week, South Korea closed due to National Foundation Day, and amid the quasi-holiday conditions in Australia as New South Wales observed Labour Day. Nonetheless, the local benchmark was propped up by the top-weighted financials sector with shares in Australia’s largest bank CBA boosted following a AUD 6.0bln off-market buyback and with reopening stocks, especially those in the travel industry, among the biggest gainers. The Nikkei 225 (-1.1%) wiped out its opening advances despite the lack of significant news catalyst for the reversal which was spearheaded by exporter names, while the focus in Japan turned to PM Kishida’s confirmation in parliament and for details of the new Cabinet members. The Hang Seng (-2.2%) was heavily pressured by losses in health and biotech stocks, while property names also suffered amid the current Evergrande fears after a USD 260mln note from Jumbo Fortune Enterprises matured on Sunday which was guaranteed by China Evergrande Group and its unit Tianji Holding Ltd, while there is no grace period for the payment but five days will be allowed for administrative or technical errors. Furthermore, shares of Evergrande, its property services unit and structured products have all been halted which reports circulating that Hopson Development is to acquire a 51% stake in Evergrande Property Services for HKD 40bln. Finally, 10yr JGBs tracked recent upside in T-notes and with support also from the negative mood in Japanese stocks, as well as the BoJ’s presence in the market for over JPY 1tln of JGBs mostly concentrated in 1yr-5yr maturities. Top Asian News Singapore Eyes More Vaccinated Travel Lanes in Cautious Reopen India Farm Protests Gather Momentum After 4 Demonstrators Killed U.S. Natural Gas Jumps Amid Strong Overseas Demand for Fuel Suzuki Takes Japan Finance Reins as Election, Stimulus Loom Major bourses in Europe have adopted somewhat of a mixed picture (Euro Stoxx 50 Unch; Stoxx 600 -0.2%), following on from the broad-based downbeat cash open seen as Europe picked up the baton from APAC. US equity futures see modest losses across the board but have again drifted off worst levels. Nonetheless, the NQ (-0.5%) remains the slight laggard vs its RTY (-0.1%), ES (-0.2%) and YM (-0.4%) counterparts. Sectors are now mixed with a slight defensive tilt, with Healthcare and Food & Beverages among the top gainers, whilst financials bear the brunt of the yield decline on Friday, with Banks at the foot of the bunch. In terms of individual movers, Morrisons (-3.8%) has accepted CD&R’s takeover offer, which has left Fortress empty-handed but has fanned speculation that the group may look towards Sainsbury’s (+5.9%), Tesco (+1.7%) or Marks & Spencer (+1.5%) as potential targets, with the former being the best suitor, according to reports. Elsewhere BT (-7%) plumbed the depths with some citing reports that Sky is to partner with Virgin Media-O2 in a move set to intensify the challenge to BT’s infrastructure builder Openreach. Top European News U.K.’s Fuel Crisis Has at Least a Week to Run as Army Steps In Adler Group Weighs Asset Sales to Cut Debt After Multiple Bids Amazon Rival Noon to Raise $2 Billion From Backers Including PIF Romanian Billionaire Petrescu Dies in Plane Crash Near Milan In FX, the broader Dollar and index remain caged to a tight range, with the latter within a narrow 93.900-94.104 band after last week printing a new YTD peak at 94.504. The Dollar remains on standby as risk events are abundant this coming week, including deliberations on Capitol Hill and Friday’s NFP. In terms of the developments in Washington, congressional leaders set a new unofficial month-end deadline to pass the infrastructure bill, and USD 3.5tln spending package, and House progressives were reported to offer to reduce spending to save the bill and are willing to compromise on the USD 3.5tln amount with limits but rejected moderate Democrat Senator Manchin’s USD 1.5tln offer. Over to the Fed and a story to keep on the radar - Fed’s Clarida (seen as the nucleus of the Fed) reportedly shifted out of a bond fund into a stock fund last year, which occurred a day prior to Fed Chair Powell issuing a statement of potential policy action due to the pandemic. A spokesperson passed this off as “pre-planned” balancing, but a similar situation led to the early resignation of Kaplan and Rosengren. Elsewhere, USTR Tai is to today unveil the China trade policy following a top-to-bottom review of the Trump admin’s tariffs and other measures. The pre-release noted that the US would begin a process to exempt certain products from tariffs on Chinese imports, with the US also seeking a meeting on Phase 1. That being said, officials noted that all tools remain on the table when asked about further tariffs. Net-net, the release was constructive and, as such, provided tailwinds to the CNH, whereby USD/CNH dipped from 6.4560 to a low of 6.4385. AUD, NZD, CAD - The non-US Dollars somewhat vary with the Loonie attached to price action in the oil complex heading into the OPEC+ meeting later today. The NZD outperforms in the G10 bunch, with the AUD on the other side of the spectrum in what is a busy central bank week for the antipodeans. The AUD/NZD cross will likely take some focus as the RBNZ is poised to hike its OCR, whilst the RBA is seen holding policy steady. AUD/NZD has made its way back towards 1.4050 from its 1.0485 overnight high. NZD/USD meanders around 0.6950 (0.6927-53 range) whilst AUD/USD hovers around the 0.7250 mark (where AUD 1bln of OpEx resides), with the 21 DMA at 0.7295 and the 50 at 0.7311. EUR, GBP - Both European majors trade relatively flat in the European morning, but Brexit rhetoric has ramped up with UK Brexit Minister Frost warning the EU that the UK is prepared to trigger Article 16 unless the EU agrees to replace the Northern Ireland Protocol. There were separate reports that ministers will be given a deadline of the end of next month to decide on whether to suspend the Northern Ireland Brexit deal unilaterally, and senior sources warned that unless the EU was prepared to engage in a “serious negotiation” during the coming weeks, the government would have no choice but to suspend the deal by December. EUR/GBP topped its 100 and 21 DMAs (both at 0.8566) after finding a floor at its 100 DMA (0.8546). EUR/USD is back above 1.1600 (vs 1.1588 base) with EUR 1bln options expiring at the figure. GBP/USD hovers mid-range between 1.3534-77. In commodities, WTI and Brent front-month futures have clambered off worst levels but remain tentative ahead of the OPEC+ confab later today (full preview in the Newsquawk Research Suite). In terms of the long and short of it, markets expect OPEC+ to stick to its plan of raising monthly oil output by +400k BPD; albeit, some look for a larger-than-planned hike. Oil journalists have said this morning that despite the noise surrounding a greater-than-planned hike, ministers expect the current plan to be maintained, although drama in the meeting cannot be omitted. Upside during the European session coincided with headlines suggesting “OPEC+ is seen keeping output policy unchanged”, citing sources, although this was poorly phrased as it incorrectly intimates production being unchanged as opposed to plans for the 400k BPD hike being unchanged. Other things to be aware of aside from OPEC, BioNTech CEO expects the virus to likely mutate and that a new vaccine formulation could be required by the middle of next year, according to the FT, whilst the Gulf of Oman has seen cyclone Shaheen hit the area, although exports are not expected to be impacted yet aside from a delay in loadings. WTI Nov resides just under 76/bbl (75.30-76.20 range) whilst Brent Dec hovers sub USD 79.50/bbl (78.75-79.50/bbl range.) Elsewhere, spot gold and silver have been drifting lower in tandem with the rise in yields seen throughout the morning, with the former briefly dipping under USD 1,750/oz whilst spot silver fell under USD 22.40/oz. Turning to base metals, LME copper posts modest gains and remains north of USD 9,000/t, with some dip-buying being cited. US Event Calendar 10am: Aug. Cap Goods Ship Nondef Ex Air, prior 0.7% 10am: Aug. Cap Goods Orders Nondef Ex Air, prior 0.5% 10am: Aug. -Less Transportation, prior 0.2% 10am: Aug. Factory Orders Ex Trans, est. 0.4%, prior 0.8% 10am: Aug. Factory Orders, est. 1.0%, prior 0.4% 10am: Aug. Durable Goods Orders, est. 1.8%, prior 1.8% 10am: Fed’s Bullard Takes Part in Panel Discussion on the Economy DB's Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap It’s certainly an odd financial world at the moment. The negatives are obvious and revolve mostly around delta, weaker than expected growth, the energy crisis, ever higher inflation and tighter central bank policy. The positives are that the base effects with numerous lockdowns imposed in Q4 2020 to at least the start of Q3 2021 mean that it won’t be that difficult for growth to still be numerically healthy for a few more quarters. So once the disappointment of growth not being as high as was hoped at this stage fades we should still be left with decent growth. Famous last words but covid should play less and less part in our lives over the year ahead as vaccines and better treatments (eg Merck antiviral pill news on Friday) become more and more widespread. In addition, stimulus and excess savings remain high and financial conditions are still very loose. While regular readers will know I’ve long been beating the drum on higher inflation and will continue to do so, I’m not convinced that growth is rolling over enough for stagflation to be the best description of the outlook for the next 12 months. However I suppose much depends on how you define it. Whilst on the topic of the energy crisis, the world is full of pictures of the UK population queuing for petrol because of a perceived shortage of HGV drivers. We’ll never know if there was actually a shortage that would have threatened fuel supplies as when the story broke 10 days ago panic set in and we had a fuel run (not as shocking as a bank run but formed from the same cloth) as the population desperately tried to refuel. My wife decided to hold out thinking the situation would resolve itself. However by Saturday night we had 10 miles left in the tank and during the day she had passed 6-7 petrol stations with either no fuel or huge queues. As we were putting the kids to bed she announced that she was getting desperate and stressed about it and was going to go out now as she was worried she wouldn’t be able to take the kids to school this week if she didn’t go out to the local area to try to find petrol. I said she was crazy to go at peak time (partly as I didn’t want to put the kids to bed alone - tough on crutches) and urged her to go very early Sunday morning instead. She ignored me and ventured out on what I thought was a suicide mission. 20 minutes later she was back with a full tank! I’ve no idea how and I won’t ask! I apologised! Outside of all the ongoing energy and stagflation chatter, all roads this week point to payrolls Friday as unless there is a marked deterioration across the whole sweep of labour market indicators within the report, this will likely be the catalyst to cement the November taper barring an exogenous or market shock. Investors will also be increasingly focused on the US debt ceiling deadline, whilst Congress simultaneously grapples with the infrastructure bill and the reconciliation package. Elsewhere on the political scene, coalition negotiations in Germany will be important to look out for, as the parties seek to form a government after the election. Before we look ahead, markets have started the week with a risk-off tone, with Asian equities including the Hang Seng (-2.17%), Kospi (-1.62%), the Nikkei (-0.95%) all moving lower while markets in China remain closed. Stocks pared gains on the news that Evergrande’s trading had been suspended in Hong Kong, with a filing from the Hong Kong Stock Exchange saying that this was “pending the release by the Company of an announcement containing inside information about a major transaction.” Meanwhile Bloomberg reported earlier that Evergrande had guaranteed a dollar note worth $260m with an official due date of Oct 3 by Jumbo Fortune Enterprises, making the effective due date today since maturity was on a Sunday. Elsewhere in Asia, NHK reported that Japan’s incoming Prime Minister, Fumio Kishida, planned to hold a general election on October 31, and looking forward, US equity futures are also pointing lower, with those on the S&P 500 down -0.32%. Looking ahead, the US jobs report will be one of the main macro highlights this week, and follows last month’s release that strongly underwhelmed expectations, with nonfarm payrolls growth of just +235k in August being the slowest since January. So another poor release would not be welcome news even if it did reflect labour shortages. In terms of what to expect this time around, our US economists are forecasting a pickup in September, with nonfarm payrolls growing by +400k, and the unemployment rate ticking down to a post-pandemic low of 5.1%. Remember in the weak report last month, yields rose on the day as markets focused on the wage increases rather than the poor headline number. As we said at the time the bond reaction to last month’s report probably helped signal the end of the extreme positive technicals and short positioning in treasuries. Over the summer strong inflation and decent data couldn’t help treasuries sell off, indicating bullet proof technicals but the period around last month’s release seemed to turn the tide the other way a bit. The other important data release this week will be the global services and composite PMIs out tomorrow, which will give an indication of how the economy has fared into the end of Q3. That said, the flash readings we’ve already had have indicated slowing growth momentum across the major economies, so it will be interesting to see where things progress from here. Turning to the US, negotiations in Congress will be in focus as legislators face the debt ceiling deadline this month (expected to be breached around October 18th according to Treasury Secretary Yellen last week), just as the Democrats are also seeking to pass a $550bn bipartisan infrastructure bill and a reconciliation package. On Saturday, Speaker Pelosi seemed to suggest that the new deadline was October 31st for the bipartisan bill which highlights how much difference there still is between the progressives and moderates on the reconciliation package. Will they eventually find a compromise for a lower amount than the original $3.5tn (maybe around $2tn) that makes nether side happy but gets the legislation through? Staying on the political scene, there’ll also be a focus on coalition negotiations in Germany, where exploratory talks have now begun between the parties. The Greens and the liberal FDP will be key to forming a majority in the new Bundestag, with 210 seats between them, as both the centre-left SPD and the conservative CDU/CSU bloc still hope to lead the next coalition. Initial exploratory talks began with the SPD yesterday, and the FDP have also spoken to the CDU/CSU, with the Greens set to follow tomorrow. On the central bank side it’s a quieter week ahead, with the two G20 policy decisions expected from the Reserve Bank of Australia (tomorrow) and the Reserve Bank of India (Friday). In Australia, our economist is expecting no change in policy and a reaffirmation of their dovish policy outlook. And in India, our economist also expects the MPC to keep all key policy rates unchanged, with our base case remaining for a reverse repo rate liftoff starting from December. The day-by-day calendar is at the end as usual. Back to last week, and global equity markets slid for the third week out of the last four as the S&P 500 fell -2.21%, with a +1.15% increase on Friday not stopping the index from having its worst week since the end of February. The losses were primarily led by growth and technology stocks as the NASDAQ declined -3.20% on the week, while cyclicals such as banks (+1.92%) and energy (+5.78%) stocks outperformed. European equities similarly fell back, as the STOXX 600 ended the week -2.24% lower after Friday’s -0.42% loss came prior to a late US rally. Global sovereign bonds sold off for a sixth straight week, though most of that selling came in the first two days as the global risk-off tone caused investors to search for havens. US 10yr Treasury yields still ended the week up +1.1bps, despite Friday’s -2.6bp decline. Bond yields in Europe moved higher as well, with those on 10yr bunds increasing +0.4bps, to trade at their highest levels since early-July. And 10yr yields on French OATs (+1.2bps) and Italians BTPs (+3.1bps) also rose further. UK gilts underperformed them all with yields increasing +7.7bps. The major driver of the move in global yields was rising inflation expectations with US 10yr breakevens increasing +4.5bps, while 10yr bund and breakevens rose +9.3bps to reach their highest level since 2013 and gilt breakevens (+3.5bps) rose to their highest level since 2008 even though they were much higher mid-week. The US September ISM manufacturing survey rose to 61.1 from 59.9 in the prior month even as supply bottlenecks intensified. This along with strong demand readings from businesses and consumers have led to higher prices which are mostly being passed onto consumers. This was seen in the PCE deflator data from Friday which showed prices rose 4.3% (4.2% expected) y/y with the core reading increasing 3.6% (3.5% expected) y/y. The University of Michigan survey showed respondents’ inflation expectations in a year dropped slightly from the initial reading 4.6% (4.7% initial , 4.8% exp), which was in-line with last month. 5-10yr expectations remain elevated at 3.0%. Overall the sentiment reading of 72.8 (71.0 prior) was better than the initial survey but still was the fifth worst reading in a decade, with only last month and the early months of the pandemic having been lower. Separately, Euro-area inflation reached its highest level since September 2008 on Friday as the headline September CPI print registered at 3.4% y/y (3.3% expected) in September, fuelled by the cost of energy and travel. Meanwhile, in Europe the manufacturing PMI readings were largely in-line with the preliminary readings with the Euro Area print sitting at 58.6 (58.7 prior) with Germany (58.4) and France (55.0) both just under their prior readings. Tyler Durden Mon, 10/04/2021 - 07:55.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytOct 4th, 2021

Gwyneth Paltrow"s Goop has been facing a slew of exec departures and employee complaints

This week's Insider Weekly takes you behind the scenes of the turmoil at Goop and the uncertainty at Tanium. Welcome back to Insider Weekly! I'm Matt Turner, co-EIC of business at Insider.Remember Goop?It wasn't so long ago that Gwyneth Paltrow's health and wellness brand was glowing. Even some questionable products (remember "Yoni eggs"?) couldn't hold it back. It had star power and more than $100 million in funding behind it. But as Madeline Berg and JP Mangalindan report this week, the pandemic has taken some of the shine off of Paltrow's brand. Their sources describe an exec exodus, complaints of low salaries, and burnout. Read on to get the inside track on Madeline and JP's reporting.Also in this week's newsletter:$9 billion cybersecurity firm Tanium is facing an exodus over uncertainty about its IPO plans and business model.Ozy Media is shutting down after a New York Times report. Current and former Ozy staffers described internal doubts and a breakneck culture.Meet the rising stars of Wall Street who are shaking up investing, trading, and dealmaking at firms like Blackstone, Tiger Global, and Goldman Sachs.Have you tried the Insider Crossword yet? Each morning through October 8, we're publishing new puzzles with clues on politics, tech, pop culture, and more. You can find all of our crossword puzzles here.As always, let me know what you think of our stories at Let's get started.Subscribe to Insider for access to all our investigations and features. New to the newsletter? Sign up here. Download our app for news on the go - click here for iOS and here for Android.The inside story of Goop Layne Murdoch Jr./Getty Images After their exposé on the Goop exec exodus was published, Madeline and JP stopped by one of our weekly newsroom meetings to share the inside track on their reporting. Here's what they said:How did the story come about?Madeline: I was tipped off that investors weren't happy with how the company was doing during the pandemic. That's when we started poking around on LinkedIn and realized that many executives had departed the company during the last year. As we spoke to our sources, we realized there was a bigger story here about the company culture.How did you get people to talk to you?JP: We wanted to tell this story in a fair and balanced way, and we made sure to tell everyone we spoke to that we didn't have an agenda, that we'd protect our sources, and that we just wanted to hear about their experiences.How did you get such strong examples? Madeline: If someone made a claim, we'd ask for examples, and for specifics. For example, we'd heard claims of low pay, but we needed to corroborate that. We were then able to report that Goop management acknowledged the low pay during an all-hands meeting. Read the full scoop on Goop's exec exodus, salary complaints and more.Uncertainty is pushing out execs at Tanium Tanium; Jeff Chiu/AP Photo; Marianne Ayala/Insider Staffers are leaving the $9 billion cybersecurity firm in droves. Former employees say no one was sure if the company would ever have an IPO, and that the company lost major contracts in its military business. When Tanium hired a new chief financial officer in April, the new exec was meant to lead the company to its IPO. But there have been no concrete updates on the status of the public offering. Take a look at what's behind Tanium's IPO delay.Ozy Media employees spoke out after NYT report Ozy Media cofounder Carlos Watson Noam Galai/Getty Images Ozy Media is shutting down, just days after a bombshell New York Times report. Before the Friday announcement, Ozy employees told Insider there had been internal questions about the company's stated audience and a workplace culture of burnout. One former staffer told us, "I felt like I was killing myself for very little recognition. I have never once told someone that I worked at Ozy and they've known what it is. Not once. That was concerning to me."Here's what Ozy staffers were saying.Meet the up-and-comers on Wall Street CalPERS; Bank of America; Tiger Global Management; Goldman Sachs; Samantha Lee/Insider Wall Street's next crop of young leaders are doing it all - including shaking up investing at the largest US pension system and deploying make-or-break capital to municipal governments. The young movers and shakers hail from top tier firms like Goldman Sachs, BlackRock, and Tiger Global. Each of them shared stories about their successes, challenges, and career advice. Here's Insider's list of 25 rising stars on Wall Street. More of this week's top reads:Some insiders at Doctors Without Borders say it's a racist workplace where nonwhite workers get inferior medical care and worse pay.Meet 30 solo capitalists writing a lot of checks to startups who every founder should scramble to pitch.The new co-president of CBS News is looking to shake up its talent lineup. He's telling people big changes are coming.A millennial investor who built a 25-unit real-estate portfolio in one year breaks down how she financed it - and how she uses social media to source deals.David Adelman quietly built a $1.6 billion fortune on campus housing and private equity. Now he's making aggressive VC-style bets on private jets, vodka, and more.How TikTok employees are rewarded and reprimanded based on parent company ByteDance's 6 culture principles."Why I quit Big Law:" Four lawyers reveal why they left top firms, and their message to former colleagues.LinkedIn is hiring for 1,000 jobs right now. Here's how to land one, according to its director of inclusion.Walmart's health clinics are struggling with basic functions. Employees say it's struggling to deliver on the push to upend healthcare.Sponsored event invite: Join bestselling author David Allison and PayPal on Thursday, October 7 at 12 pm ET for a virtual event on how marketers can reach customers based on core values. Register here.Compiled with help from Phil Rosen.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytOct 3rd, 2021