☀️ Mitch – August 18 2020


Happy Tuesday. Grover woke up early this morning and demanded that I take him on a walk. It’s his way of telling me to lose weight.

credit: clayton morris

In Case You Missed It. A senior Trump appointee at The Department of Homeland Security released a scathing rebuke of the President. The video has gone more than viral. It’s gone virally viral. Watch it here. And then come back and read the rest.

On Today’s Show: Gold expert Brent Johnson joins us to talk about investing in precious metals and what he thinks will happen to the U.S. dollar. Subscribe and join us at 9AM EST right here.

Coronavirus Update: Total confirmed U.S. cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 5,438,235 — Total deaths: 170,497 — Total recoveries: 1,865,580

Fed President Neel Kashkari called for a new total lockdown in order to eradicate the virus.

In Today’s Newsletter:

  • Republicans ditching stimulus?
  • China gets ready for war
  • Sorry about the pepperoni


Program Rate Change APR Change
30 year 3.22%  0.11% 3.29% 0.11%
15 year 2.75% 0.01% 2.91% 0.03%

The Lead: Mitch Ditches Stimulus

credit: getty images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has gone full-on wishy-washy about another COVID relief bill. A few long weeks ago, he was assuring the American people that he was working hard on a resolution with House Democrats. Now his language suggests that this might just not happen. At all.

“I can’t tell you with certainty we’re going to reach an agreement,” he said.

What about that “we’ll work together” line we’ve been swallowing? What about people who are out of work and record unemployment numbers? What about the fact that we needed something yesterday?

Indeed, what about all of that? Republicans are sticking to their $1 trillion bottom line, while Democrats still want much more to the tune of just over $2.5 trillion. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said this about Republican lawmakers:

“Perhaps you mistook them for somebody who gave a damn. That isn’t the case.”

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Economy: New Jersey Delinquencies

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A record number of FHA mortgages are delinquent – the largest number in the last four decades.

FHA loans are used most by lower-earning borrowers. Those are the people most likely to be out of work during the pandemic and paying the mortgage is something that is just not possible for many.

The largest number of delinquencies is in New Jersey with a rate of 20%, followed by Nevada, New York, Florida, and Hawaii, all states with a heavy concentration of workers in the service and tourism industry.

News By The Numbers

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6-10 feet. That is approximately the size of a shark that attacked a woman who was surfing in Australia. Not to worry! Her husband was on the scene to punch the shark in the face to get it to go away. The woman took a bite to the leg but is expected to make a full recovery. Now I have to go attack a deadly animal to prove that I’m tough to my wife thanks to this guy! What about the spider in the bathroom? Does that count?

130. That is how many students tested positive for COVID after just one week back at school. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has decided to go back to distance after just a week in class due to a positivity rate of 13.6% of those tested. As of Monday morning, 177 students were in isolation, and 349 were in quarantine.

5,500. That is how many accounts were targeted in a hack of the Canada Revenue Agency. This is the Canadian version of the IRS where citizens file taxes. The government has temporarily suspended its online services after thousands of usernames and passwords were stolen in an attempt to steal identities.

China Bracing for Financial War

giphy.gif credit: executive digest

Chinese state banks are bracing for a financial war with the US that could include sanctions. In a symposium last month, Chinese researchers met to discuss this likely eventuality.

Economics professors said that the state should prepare for “targeted financial bucks” on certain industries that would cut them off from the dollar payment system. These industries are evaluating what they would need to do to survive without US sales.

Banks are also evaluating what they need to do to comply with sanctions and are pumping the breaks on opening foreign accounts.

One would hope that American companies are doing the same, evaluating how its economy could survive without China. It may be necessary but it won’t be pretty.

This Is What Recovery Looks Like

credit: asia magazine

The South Korea Finance Minister has said that he expects the country’s economy to make a recovery in the third quarter. The country was hit hard by the pandemic in the second quarter of 2020 but moved swiftly to test and isolate citizens, therefore limiting the spread of COVID and apparently bringing back its economy as a result.

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development estimates that South Korea will have the smallest hit to its growth of any developed nation. Original estimates were that South Korea’s economy would shrink by 1.2% this year but it seems it will beat those estimates with only a 0.8% reduction in size.

In addition to successful COVID management, the government spent over $230 billion in a stimulus package. Nice idea, right? A government stimulus. The US should try it!

Now Things Have Officially Gone Crazy

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Last week we reported beer shortages during the pandemic. This week we have to report on a pepperoni shortage, making business tough on pizza shops around the country. No beer or pizza? How can this still be America!?

Pizza shops that can get pepperoni are paying $2 more per pound than they were pre-pandemic. This is not only because of the disruption in the food supply chain. It is also reportedly because pepperoni is hard to make and has low-profit margins so meat producers have opted to make less of it during these hard times.

So are Americans willing to splurge for pepperoni on their pizzas if they are charged more for the actual price of production? Perhaps. A YouGov survey showed that 53% of pizza lovers choose pepperoni on their pizzas and pizza is a very important pandemic survival meal! We do challenge the validity of this survey though. Nearly 50% of voters reported that anchovies are their least favorite and we think that is either incorrect or just pure ignorance.

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