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The Leyendecker View: October 15, 2021


Never confuse education with intelligence or knowledge with wisdom.
Richard Feynmam


THE ECONOMIC VIEW

Goldman cuts US growth forecast
How many times have they been wrong recently?
 
Small business optimism slips
Chaotic world creates too much uncertainty.
Yet retail sales remain resilient

Home sales in China fall sharply
And now their home values are declining
Canary in the coal mine for global economy?
 
This winter’s gas bills will be high
Will this cut into consumption?
 
THE C-SUITE
 
The reimagined workplace
Good perspective on how Covid changed things.
 
Mastering change
The new CFO mandate.
 
How to talk your way to the top
Sharpen your communication style.
 
GLOBAL ENERGY CRISIS
 
Europe’s switch to renewable energy
Has been “management by chaos.”
 
The energy transition
Is going to be volatile and expensive.
 
Get your energy act together!
Foreign companies tell China.
Yet China says NO cutting electricity to homes
So businesses will suffer.
 
THE INFLATION BOGEYMAN
 
China’s producer inflation at 26-year high
Won’t that show up soon in product prices?
 
Shadow inflation is all around us
Companies cutting back customer services and more.
 
Inflation climbs to 5.4% in September
Yet corporate wage growth projection is 3%
While Social Security pops checks up 5.9%
 
Strong wage gains may be happening
If so, inflation might not be so transitory.
 
HUMPTY DUMPTY SUPPLY CHAINS
 
Supply chain problems threaten economy
And no one expected this to happen?
 
The shipping crisis
May require a whole new global infrastructure.
 
US retailers charter private cargo ships
Gotta get those holiday presents into stores!
 
THE LABOR VIEW
 
Worker strikes are happening
In Hollywood, at John Deere plants
At Kellogg, in health care
Even in coal mines
They all want higher wages.
 
Americans are quitting their jobs
At a record pace.
Yet jobless claims are at lowest pandemic point
 
Where did all the workers go?
4.3MM workers are MIA.
 
The great re-evaluation
Is quality of life more important than wages?
 
MEANWHILE IN EUROPE
 
France proposes migration treaty
Between the EU and Britain.
 
French say Polish court ruling attacks EU
Is Polexit next?
 
The EU responds to energy crisis
Their latest policy guide.
Also considers joining forces to buy natgas
 
GLOBAL
 
The world’s most innovative countries
Switzerland #1, Sweden #2, huh???
 
Kim Jun Un has new “toys”
Showing them off at an exhibition.
 
The state of freedom in the world
The map suggests we’re close to 50/50.
 
THE FINANCE WORLD
 
Easy money is here to stay
No matter if we get consumer boom or stagflation.
 
The SPAC sell-off has created opportunity
Some see it as an alternative to short-term bonds.
 
The ten trillion dollar man
How Larry Fink became king of Wall Street.
 
Asset manager industry going gangbusters
As financial asset values rise…
 
THE CRYPTO MEME
 
Jamie Dimon again calls bitcoin worthless
Here’s what he doesn’t get…supposedly
Yet BlackRock CEO agrees with Dimon
While US becomes the center for bitcoin mining
And China bitcoin mining goes to zero
 
CORONANEWS
 
Get out and enjoy Halloween
Decrees Dr. Fauci.
As Covid cases dip below 100,000 a day
 
WHO putting together new team
To investigate Covid’s origin.
 
Another pandemic is spreading
China’s pig problem heads global.
 
TECHNOLOGY
 
Elon Musk has the absolute best rocket
It could transform the space race.
As SpaceX hits $100B valuation
 
Social media algorithms
Encourage and reward narcissism.
 
The market for phone location data
Has grown to be worth billions.
 
Microsoft succumbs
To the right-to-repair movement.
 
THE NEXT NORMAL
 
The mouse “utopia” experiment
OH MY, did this predict our future?
 
The real meaning of work
WFH has opened the door to a generational shift.
 
America’s trust in media
Is rightfully at a new low.
 
THE WAR ON CARBON
 
See the massive wind investment
The Biden administration is proposing.
 
Oil and gas investing must stop in five years
Says Al Gore’s fund co-founder.
As Biden team begs the O&G industry for help
And Goldman predicts higher-for-longer prices
 
The cheap and easy climate fix
Reduce the amount of methane released.
 
What to do with all those used EV batteries
We’re still trying to figure that out
 
THE CHINA SYNDROME
 
LinkedIn is shutting down in China
Chinese state compliance is too onerous.
 
China is now a declining power
And that’s a problem.
 
Evergrande misses fifth payment deadline
Who is going to take the losses here?
A $5 trillion reckoning is coming
 
China’s US trade surplus hits record
We keep sending them more of our money.
 
MAKING A BETTER YOU
 
Second order thinking
What smart people use to outperform.
 
Turn everyday stress
Into optimal stress.
 
Why you should stop reading news
Because it’s become mind poison.
 
HOW ABOUT A BREAK
 
The 25 most neighborly cities in US
WFH folks should move to one.
 
What does a $240 beer taste like?
It’s illegal in 15 states.
 
Want to live longer?
Quit stressing about your weight.
 
VIDEOS OF THE WEEK
 
William Shatner reflects on space
Captain Kirk in awe after Blue Origin flight.
 
You gotta love this pet squirrel
Amazingly precious!
 
The Chicken People trailer
I may have to see this documentary.
 
FROM THE HEADHUNTER’S KITCHEN
 
How to make awesome pork belly
I could eat this every day.
 
Here comes the McPlant
McDonald’s is rolling out a veggie burger.
 
A beautiful apple tart
Does it taste as good as it looks?
 
THOUGHTS FROM DOUG
 
Is the new normal nothing more than constant uncertainty? Oh…maybe that’s always been the normal.
 
Will workers “boycotting” a return to the office or the restaurant catalyze rising wages?
 
Goldman Sachs has had to reduce their GDP forecasts numerous times over the last year. Their projections have proven consistently wrong. What if the Federal Reserve is wrong about transitory inflation? Does the Fed have smarter people and better data than Goldman Sachs?
 
Tighter monetary policy generally means lower financial asset values. With so much of our economic “growth” tied to the increasing value in the securities and real estate markets, what’s going to happen to economy as interest rates rise? And what happens if energy inflation and the Humpty Dumpty supply chain problem leads to higher product prices at the same time?
 
Lots of people want to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, yet only 247,000 people in the country earn today’s minimum wage. As I’ve suggested before: Do we have a minimum wage problem, or do we have a problem not creating enough jobs that pay more than the minimum wage?
 
Would it be considered oppressive policy to ban cell phones in our school systems and force people to leave their cell phones in the car when they go to work? Would this increase or decrease productivity? Would it increase or decrease people’s emotional well-being?
 
Can anyone tell me the actual goal we’re aiming for as we attempt to “solve” the climate crisis? 
 
How can companies expect employees to return to the office when employers like Amazon and PWC are letting employees work from home indefinitely?
 
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
 
The Leyendecker View: Is a Crypto Meltdown Coming?
October 8, 2021
 
The Leyendecker View: Is the Stock Market Rigged?
October 1, 2021
 
 
 

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