A partial digest

Friday was day 80 of the Biden-Harris administration. Among the executive orders is one to establish a presidential commission examining SCOTUS. The commission will, along with other things, provide the following:

(i) An account of the contemporary commentary and debate about the role and operation of the Supreme Court in our constitutional system and about the functioning of the constitutional process by which the President nominates and, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, appoints Justices to the Supreme Court; (ii) The historical background of other periods in the Nation’s history when the Supreme Court’s role and…


A partial digest

Friday was day 73 of the Biden-Harris administration. Among other things, April 2021 was declared National Financial Capability Month.

April is recognized as National Financial Capability Month to highlight the value of high-quality financial education to improving Americans’ financial capability…

The Financial Literacy and Education Commission, a 23-member body of Federal agencies, chaired by the Secretary of the Treasury, was created to coordinate and improve financial education for all Americans. Its members are helping address the financial challenges our country faces as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic…

High-quality financial education should build on and respond to people’s individual strengths…


A partial digest

It’s day 66 of the Biden-Harris administration.

Two weeks have passed of volatile and/or lukewarm market activity since passage of the last stimulus act, seemingly in spite of moments of falling yields. Additionally, more stimulus 3.0 checks went to those in need, and the wealthiest Americans didn’t get any. Hence, it’s not totally surprising that it wasn’t much of a boon for stocks. It’s worth reiterating, then, that perhaps markets are finally needing fundamentals for fuel, not government checks and empty words. Massive infrastructure spending could help.

Quick wrap:

  • Yields tightened heading into Yellen/Powell congressional testimony in the first half…

A partial digest

Friday was day 59 of the Biden-Harris administration. Stimulus checks are quickly making their way to recipients. CNBC reports that roughly 90 million checks landed in bank accounts as of March 17.

Make no mistake, SARS-CoV-2 is still spreading, vaccinations or no.

Quick wrap:

  • Oil volatility has returned.
  • Gold has bounced back somewhat, though it’s still splashing about in the shallow end of the $1,700s.
  • Crypto keeps bouncing and retracing, bouncing and retracing. Total market cap is $1.74+ trillion as of publication.
  • Yields climbed quite a bit, finishing at 1.72. There does appear to be concern over borrowing costs, evidenced…

A partial digest

Friday was day 52 of the Biden-Harris administration. The $1.9 trillion H.R. 1319, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, was signed by Biden into law Thursday, after quickly clearing the House again following Senate action last weekend. According to a Tax Policy Center analysis being widely circulated, the lowest quintile of income earners in the nation is set to receive the lion’s share of the package’s after tax income benefits.

This brings us to one of the more significant trading developments from this past week, which is that in spite of stimulus passage, markets reacted weakly on Friday, the…


A partial digest

It’s day 45 of the Biden-Harris administration.

The $1.9 trillion stimulus package is being put through the paces. Wrangling in the Senate continues, with a vote nigh. As expected, a $15 minimum wage raise didn’t make the cut.

H.R. 1319, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, will be passed by Senate Democrats over the objections of Republicans, it’s believed. Then, a variation of it will be sent back to the House for another vote before making it to Biden’s desk. Democrats are working against a March 14 deadline, when existing UI benefits expire.

Members of Congress on both sides…


A partial digest

Friday was day 38 of the Biden-Harris administration. Presidential actions included an executive order on America’s supply chains.

The stimulus vote took place in the House and the $1.9 trillion package cleared this initial hurdle. Next, the Senate, where some anticipate it will be stripped of the provision increasing the minimum wage to $15/hr. Whatever version the Senate ends up with and [possibly] passes will be sent back to the House for a new vote. If all goes well, it will then be sent to Biden’s desk. As the wrangling continues, the markets will behave accordingly.

Equities and the economy…


A partial digest

It’s day 31 of the Biden-Harris administration. The nation has returned to the now familiar holding pattern of awaiting a stimulus package.

All EIP 2 payments have been issued, says the IRS.¹ The steps to follow if we didn’t receive ours are here. They include using the GMP tool to check payment status, requesting a payment trace with the IRS, and claiming a tax credit on our federal returns.

Discussions around inflation are frequently fear-based. They are also often launched by individuals motivated by selling others on the ownership of inflation assets.

Gold — one of those [in]famous inflation assets…


A partial digest

It’s day 24 of the Biden-Harris administration.

Concern is growing over the worsening worldwide semiconductor shortage, the news of which began in earnest a couple of weeks ago, but traces some of its roots to the Trump administration’s trade wars. Since chips are a critical component of so many goods we consume in our increasingly digital world, one question is how one hedges such a thing, now that it’s reached a point of critical mass.

First, we’d want to seek out the source of the bottleneck. Sometimes, that can be with the most primary ingredients in the making of the…

Philip Valenta, MSF

Intersectionist :: https://philipvalenta.com

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