US stock plunge sparks global sell-off

US stocks suffered their worst falls in more than six years on Monday in a sell-off sparked by concerns of higher interest rates. Via BBC News (06 Feb.) The Dow Jones Industrial Average index tumbled 1,175 points, or 4.6% to close down at 24,345.75. Investors are reacting to changes in the outlook for the American and global economy, and what that might mean for the cost of borrowing.  

Global stock selloff picks up momentum

The biggest global equity selloff in two years continued to pick up momentum as US stock futures kept falling and exchanges across Asia posted losses. The equity downturn came as the yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury hit a four-year high. Bloomberg (05 Feb.) Reuters (05 Feb.)

China moves to shut down cryptocurrency market

China will block all websites, foreign and domestic, providing information related to cyrptocurrency trading and initial coin offerings in an effort to completely shut down the cryptocurrency market, according to a report by Financial News, a publication associated with the People’s Bank of China. When China banned cryptocurrency trading and ICOs in September, some investors simply shifted to offshore platforms. South China Morning Post (Hong Kong) (05 Feb.)

The federal deficit is widening during a ‘peacetime’ economic expansion

For most of the past 70 years, the federal deficit has been strongly counter-cyclical. That means when the economy goes down, deficits go up. After all, in bad economies, tax revenue falls as people and corporations make less money. Government spending also usually rises. Some of this bump in spending happens automatically as people become poorer and qualify for government services (unemployment benefits, food stamps); some of it comes from deliberate, one-off stimulus measures.

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Thinking in Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don’t Have All the Facts

Annie Duke’s new book is, “Thinking in Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don’t Have All the Facts.” She has taken her poker expertise and graduate level degree of psychology and digested it into a book we all can relate to our lives. She is a poker player, author, decision making expert, and cognitive scientist. Her understanding of how luck, skill and uncertainty all play a role in life is fascinating. (read more…)

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