“A free, relatively untested vaccine that’s rushed to market? Pump me full of it, Fauci. Whatever it takes for bars to reopen.”
Hey there carnivores,
Markets were up on Monday, as tech companies got it together for a change.
Today we’re talking another potential stimulus package.
Jeff & Jason
Spare some change?
With COVID firing all cylinders, Congress is preparing its response. Republican Senators revealed a $1T COVID relief package yesterday, after days of behind the scenes negotiations.
What’s in the box?!
The deal includes plenty of essentials like the $16B in new COVID testing funds, and $105B for schools.
And if you’re jonesin’ to pour more funds into your Robinhood account and/or black market mango JUUL pods, we’ve got good news…If approved, there will be another round of $1,200 stimulus checks for hard-working Americans. And even those that don’t work hard if they make less than $100k.
And what about the businesses?
They’ve got another wave of PPP loans coming their way. The catch? Businesses must have lost more than 50% of revenue to be eligible for a loan. Oh, and the company must employ 300 or fewer employees, compared to the threshold of 500 under the CARES Act *Harvard frantically writes up pink slips*
Plus Johnny Gov will offer five-year protection to private businesses from coronavirus related lawsuits… unless entities are proven to have engaged in “gross negligence.” So basically the everyday equivalent of signing a waiver before you go bungee jumping.
So what about the people who don’t have jobs?
Well, they’ll have access to benefits that are a lot like those provided under the CARES act… just with a bit more hardship.
The $600 per week additional federal benefit which runs out this Friday would be replaced by a $200 version through September. Then, in October recipients would be eligible for a 70% wage replacement from Uncle Sam. But only up to $500. So, hedge fund managers need not apply.
The bottom line…
The good news? Well, there is no good news. FFS, a pandemic is ravaging Mother Earth. But…
Moderna and Pfizer kicked off phase 3 of their vaccine trials on Monday. More than 30k people will be enrolled in the trial, which will be used to determine the vaccine’s effectiveness against COVID, and whether it’s set to be distributed like condoms on a college campus.
Moderna will be doing its tests in 90 locations across the US, while Pfizer’s trial will hit 120 locations globally… which seems like entirely too many locations if mutant disease/zombie apocalypse movies are any indication.
☑️ Wellcome to the party.
Wells Fargo is following the lead of JPMorgan Chase and Goldman in entering the $4.5T ETF industry. The bank will register ‘Wells Fargo Exchange-Traded Funds Trust’ with the SEC… although nothing about Wells inspires trust in anyone.
This follows announcements from last Friday that the nation’s fourth-largest bank is cutting costs, restructuring its loan standards, and aiming to layoff employees. Seems like the perfect time to start a new venture.
☑️ Stay tf home.
Alphabet’s CEO Sundar Pichai announced that nearly all of the company’s 200k employees will work from home until next July due to ‘rona boi. This marks the first major US company to announce such a lengthy timetable for returning to the office… something I’m sure the Miami Marlins wish they had thought of.
The proposed return to the office date differs amongst tech giants. Microsoft is looking to have employees back in the office in the fall, whereas Facebook expects half of its employees to work from home over the next decade.
In summary: nobody has any clue what’s going on… even the companies with all of your data.
☑️ Stef’ing down.
Stefano Pessina will step down as Walgreens CEO… a role he has held since 2015 after it merged with Alliance Boots (a European pharmacy, not a footwear worker’s union). The Italian billionaire will move over to the executive chairman role, but hold on to his CEO spot until the pharmacy finds a suitable replacement. Might I suggest Martin Shkreli?
The company has struggled as of late with lower profits from prescription drug sales and a complicated turnaround. It announced earlier this month that it will cut 4k jobs in the UK and suspend stock buybacks.
☑️ The Wolf of Rush Street.
Rush Street Interactive will hit the public market via a merger with the special-purpose acquisition company (SPAC) dMY Technology Group. The online sports betting company will be valued at $1.8B.
Rush operates in legal and regulated markets, such as Illinois, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, and has expanded its betting operations footprint to Latin America.