Repo Commentary-04/01/21





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mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l3:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l4 {mso-list-id:206182516; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-1028091594 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l4:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l4:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l4:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l4:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l4:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l4:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l4:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l4:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l4:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l5 {mso-list-id:246428357; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-177726256 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l5:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l5:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l5:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l5:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l5:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l5:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l5:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l5:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l5:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l6 {mso-list-id:255948167; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:1014366508 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l6:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l6:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l6:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l6:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l6:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l6:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l6:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l6:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l6:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l7 {mso-list-id:298851753; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:629057344 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l7:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l7:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l7:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l7:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l7:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l7:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l7:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l7:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l7:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l8 {mso-list-id:373502968; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-125766304 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l8:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:40.65pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l8:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:76.65pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”; mso-bidi-font-family:”Times New Roman”;} @list l8:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:112.65pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l8:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:148.65pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l8:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:184.65pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”; mso-bidi-font-family:”Times New Roman”;} @list l8:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:220.65pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l8:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:256.65pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l8:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:292.65pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”; mso-bidi-font-family:”Times New Roman”;} @list l8:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:328.65pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l9 {mso-list-id:391346297; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-1068871560 67698703 67698713 67698715 67698703 67698713 67698715 67698703 67698713 67698715;} @list l9:level1 {mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l9:level2 {mso-level-number-format:alpha-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l9:level3 {mso-level-number-format:roman-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:right; text-indent:-9.0pt;} @list l9:level4 {mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l9:level5 {mso-level-number-format:alpha-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l9:level6 {mso-level-number-format:roman-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:right; text-indent:-9.0pt;} @list l9:level7 {mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l9:level8 {mso-level-number-format:alpha-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l9:level9 {mso-level-number-format:roman-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:right; text-indent:-9.0pt;} @list l10 {mso-list-id:465316200; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:1489925076 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l10:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:40.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l10:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:76.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l10:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:112.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l10:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:148.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l10:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:184.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l10:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:220.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l10:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:256.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l10:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:292.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l10:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:328.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l11 {mso-list-id:470175817; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-1424318960 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l11:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l11:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l11:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l11:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l11:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l11:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l11:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l11:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l11:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l12 {mso-list-id:513805310; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-1579889698 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l12:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:40.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l12:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:76.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l12:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:112.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l12:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:148.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l12:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:184.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l12:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:220.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l12:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:256.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l12:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:292.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l12:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:328.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l13 {mso-list-id:647058511; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:1192120772 -1758567400 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l13:level1 {mso-level-start-at:0; mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:•; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; mso-ansi-font-size:16.0pt; font-family:”Helvetica Neue”; mso-fareast-font-family:”Times New Roman”; mso-bidi-font-family:”Times New Roman”;} @list l13:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l13:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l13:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l13:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l13:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l13:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l13:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l13:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l14 {mso-list-id:655648075; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:1910900010 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l14:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l14:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l14:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l14:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l14:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l14:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l14:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l14:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l14:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l15 {mso-list-id:661468776; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-450613036 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l15:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l15:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l15:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l15:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l15:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l15:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l15:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l15:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l15:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l16 {mso-list-id:672807283; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:1625441320 -1758567400 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l16:level1 {mso-level-start-at:0; mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:•; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; mso-ansi-font-size:16.0pt; font-family:”Helvetica Neue”; mso-fareast-font-family:”Times New Roman”; mso-bidi-font-family:”Times New Roman”;} @list l16:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l16:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l16:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l16:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l16:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l16:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l16:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l16:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l17 {mso-list-id:706829947; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-654903680 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l17:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l17:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l17:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l17:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l17:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l17:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l17:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l17:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l17:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l18 {mso-list-id:798304707; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-1173174908 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l18:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:45.0pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l18:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:81.0pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l18:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:117.0pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l18:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:153.0pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l18:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:189.0pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l18:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:225.0pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l18:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:261.0pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l18:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:297.0pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l18:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:333.0pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l19 {mso-list-id:1001349736; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-355171904 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l19:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l19:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l19:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l19:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l19:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l19:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l19:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l19:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l19:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l20 {mso-list-id:1038625445; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-1509030608 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l20:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l20:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l20:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l20:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l20:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l20:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l20:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l20:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l20:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l21 {mso-list-id:1057437590; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-1436895860 -1758567400 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l21:level1 {mso-level-start-at:0; mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:•; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; mso-ansi-font-size:16.0pt; font-family:”Helvetica Neue”; mso-fareast-font-family:”Times New Roman”; mso-bidi-font-family:”Times New Roman”;} @list l21:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l21:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l21:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l21:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l21:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l21:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l21:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l21:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l22 {mso-list-id:1073545562; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:806672782 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l22:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l22:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l22:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l22:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l22:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l22:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l22:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l22:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l22:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l23 {mso-list-id:1186210015; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-1411760118 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l23:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l23:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l23:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l23:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l23:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l23:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l23:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l23:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l23:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l24 {mso-list-id:1239824911; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:967862892 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l24:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l24:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l24:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l24:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l24:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l24:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l24:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l24:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l24:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l25 {mso-list-id:1512454478; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:999868938 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l25:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l25:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l25:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l25:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l25:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l25:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l25:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l25:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l25:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l26 {mso-list-id:1763725462; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:908349380 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l26:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l26:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l26:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l26:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l26:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l26:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l26:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l26:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l26:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l27 {mso-list-id:1811366265; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-293425292 -1758567400 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l27:level1 {mso-level-start-at:0; mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:•; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; mso-ansi-font-size:16.0pt; font-family:”Helvetica Neue”; mso-fareast-font-family:”Times New Roman”; mso-bidi-font-family:”Times New Roman”;} @list l27:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l27:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l27:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l27:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l27:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l27:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l27:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l27:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l28 {mso-list-id:1842617117; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:934031170 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l28:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l28:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l28:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l28:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l28:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l28:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l28:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l28:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l28:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l29 {mso-list-id:1944219017; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-694665046 67698693 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l29:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l29:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l29:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l29:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l29:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l29:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l29:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l29:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l29:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l30 {mso-list-id:1962148748; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:1588209092 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l30:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l30:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l30:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l30:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l30:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l30:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l30:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l30:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l30:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l31 {mso-list-id:2056544500; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-1991236944 67698693 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l31:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l31:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l31:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l31:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l31:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l31:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l31:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l31:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l31:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l32 {mso-list-id:2062168213; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:-207472564 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693 67698689 67698691 67698693;} @list l32:level1 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:58.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l32:level2 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:94.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l32:level3 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:130.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l32:level4 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:166.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l32:level5 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:202.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l32:level6 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:238.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l32:level7 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:274.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Symbol;} @list l32:level8 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:o; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:310.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:”Courier New”;} @list l32:level9 {mso-level-number-format:bullet; mso-level-text:; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; margin-left:346.5pt; text-indent:-.25in; font-family:Wingdings;} @list l33 {mso-list-id:2076121780; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:937729250 67698703 67698713 67698715 67698703 67698713 67698715 67698703 67698713 67698715;} @list l33:level1 {mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l33:level2 {mso-level-number-format:alpha-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l33:level3 {mso-level-number-format:roman-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:right; text-indent:-9.0pt;} @list l33:level4 {mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l33:level5 {mso-level-number-format:alpha-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l33:level6 {mso-level-number-format:roman-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:right; text-indent:-9.0pt;} @list l33:level7 {mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l33:level8 {mso-level-number-format:alpha-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l33:level9 {mso-level-number-format:roman-lower; mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:right; text-indent:-9.0pt;} @list l34 {mso-list-id:2103141626; mso-list-type:hybrid; mso-list-template-ids:1432016700 67698703 67698713 67698715 67698703 67698713 67698715 67698703 67698713 67698715;} @list l34:level1 {mso-level-tab-stop:none; mso-level-number-position:left; text-indent:-.25in;} @list l34:level2 {mso-level-number-format:alpha-lower; 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It is Day 386 (on 04/01) since the official start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the day that the WHO declared it a ‘pandemic’ (3/11/20).
 
 
I hope that you and your families are staying healthy and safe. New COVID-19 cases in the US dropped to the lowest rate in 3 months. Vaccine distribution began in the US on 12/14/20 and more than 145 million vaccinations have been administered (as of 3/30/21). We have fully vaccinated over 52.4 million people out of a population of about 330 million. However, we are nowhere close to herd immunity, which would be about 70-90% of people vaccinated. The vaccine administration rate in the US has exceeded 2 million shots per day. I received my first of two shots of the Pfizer vaccine on 3/20/21. My second shot is scheduled 4/10/21. I am very happy to receive them.
 
 
 
 



I have designed and crafted an 11-week state-of-the-art virtual training/education course on the Fundamentals of Repo. You can learn more about the course here:  https://www.pierpoint.info/courses/the-fundamentals-of-repo. It is now available. I think you will find it a very informative, complete, and an entertaining version of distanced learning, with my usual humor and my experience sprinkled across some 149 PowerPoint presentations within a new state-of-the-art Teachable system, with hours of my voiceovers, as well as 10 videos, and an exam. The course has international accreditation from Chartered Institute For Securities and Investment (CISI).  I suspect many companies have already budgeted to subscribe and relieve themselves of the burden of training their people in Repo, and leave it to one of the OG Repo dinosaurs. Lol. But, first, check out my friend, Professor Moorah Choudhry’s, FREE 30-minute Primer on Repo (at the same address), which introduces my course.
 
 
 
So, I am NOT RETIRED from the Securities Finance industry. 
·     I am teaching the above Pierpoint Finance Academy course on Repo Fundamentals.
·     I am consulting with 2 large firms about repo issues and business plans. 
·     I am sharing my opinion and expertise with industry periodicals in articles, like the recent Global Investor Group/ISF article.
·     I am consulting with an electronic trading platform.
·     I am participating as the Repo expert for the Pierpoint Alpha Community (PAC)- training/networking/brainstorming/question-answering group, Pierpoint Alpha Community (PAC), and subsequent forums.
·     I  have also just been asked to be a panel moderator for a virtual conference being held by Securities Finance Times in May.
 
Kidwell Consultants, LLC is available FOR HIRE as a consultant. So, if you need my Securities Financing expertise or access to my vast network of about 9000 clients, call my mobile (646-753-1300), email (jeffkidwell82@gmail.com), or hit me up on LinkedIn.  
 
 
My Repo Commentary is posted FREE (it’s actually always been free) on my website:  www.repocommentary.com. It also pops up on LinkedIn, the Global Investors Group (ISF Magazine) website, and on CentralBanks.com as an op-ed. I am interested in entertaining you and taking your mind off the pressures you are under. Since its inception in 1982, the Repo Commentary does not represent the views of any of my former firms and reflects only my opinion and includes only publicly available information.  I make a strong effort to attribute any quotes or thoughts that are not my own, I do not make any marketing spiels, and I really am more interested (70-80%) in entertaining you than boring (20-30%) you with too much market info. Feel free, as always, to send me information or pictures, to make it better!
 
 
Holidays or Events (04/01):
 
 
•      April Fools’ Day
•      Assyrian New Year
•      Boomer Bonus Day
•      Fossil Fools Day
•      International Edible Book Festival
•      International Fun at Work Day (not to be confused with April Fools’ Day
•      International Tatting Day
•      Lupus Alert Day
•      National Burrito Day
•      National Jump in Muddy Puddles Day
•      National Trombone Players Day
•      National One Cent Day
•      National Sourdough Bread Day
•      National Love for our Children Day
•      St. Stupid Day
•      Reading is Funny Day
•      Sorry Charlie Day
•      Poetry and Creative Mind Day
•      US Air Force Academy Day
•      Odisha Day (Odisha India)
•      Arbor Day (Tanzania)
•      Civil Service Day (Thailand)
•      Cyprus National Day (Cyprus)
•      Maundy Thursday (Holy Thursday, just before Easter)
•      National Atheist’s Day (kind of ironic with the 3 main religions having holidays)
 
For those who celebrate, Happy Passover (which Judaism is in the midst of) and Happy Easter (which Christians celebrate this Sunday). Ramadan (Islam) is coming up as well, so the 3 main religions are represented with holidays.
 
Some Famous People Born on (04/01):
 
 
•      1220-Emperor Go-Saga of Japan
•      1282-Louis IV, Holy Roman Emperor
•      1640-Georg Mohr, Danish mathematician and academic
•      1815-Otto von Bismarck, German lawyer and 1st Chancellor of the German Empire
•      1873-Sergei Rachmaninoff, Russian pianist, composer, and conductor
•      1883-Lon Chaney, American actor, director, and screenwriter
•      1909-Eddy Duchin, American pianist and bandleader
•      1929-Jane Powell, American actress, singer, and dancer
•      1932-Debbie Reynolds, Scottish-Irish-American actress, singer, and dancer
•      1939-Ali MacGraw, American model and actress
•      1939-Phil Niekro, American baseball player and manager
•      1948-Jimmy Cliff, Jamaican singer and musician
•      1955-Don Hasselbeck, American football player and sportscaster
•      1961-Susan Boyle, Scottish singer
 
Daily Weird Facts:
 
 
Finland is the world’s happiest country, according to the 2019 World Happiness Report.
 
 
 
Daily Affirmation/Thought/Pun/Quote:
 
 
 
“I say luck is when an opportunity comes along and you’re prepared for it.”—Denzel Washington
 
 
 
 
Currency and Commodity Markets:
 
Oil prices closed at:
 
$74.34/barrel on 10/5/18
$47.66/barrel on 12/23/18
$48.63 on 01/07/19
$73.77/barrel on 4/29
$53.50/barrel on 10/2
$59.10/barrel on 12/8
$58.81/barrel on 1/17/20
$35.92/barrel on 3/11
$27.15/barrel on 3/18
$24.90/barrel on 4/01
$31.80/barrel on 4/12
$28.31/barrel on 4/17
$20.03/barrel on 4/27
$26.78/barrel on 5/04
$30.39/barrel on 5/09
$35.69/barrel on 5/20
$50.70/barrel on 01/04/21
$56.04/barrel on 01/13
$60.07/barrel on 02/16
$66.34/barrel on 03/05
$61.30/barrel on 04/01
 
 
OPEC shows confidence in economic recovery, as it raises oil supply. Oil prices have rallied well past pre-COVID-19 prices. The price of gasoline at my West Palm Beach station fallen about 10 cents in the past 2 weeks, to $2.69/gallon. There are some stations in the area that are charging as much as $3.39/gallon.
 
 
 
One USD versus the Yen was trading at (these are all around Repo Commentary dates). I did decide to trim this running list to just a few dates:
 
112.20 on 12/24/18
102.96 on 12/06/19
104.80 on 02/07/20
99.23 on 03/11/20
103.55 on 12/16/20
103.90 on 01/13/21
105.47 on 02/04/21
106.00 on 02/16/21
108.31 on 03/05/21
110.63 on 04/01/21
 
 
One Euro was trading on:
 
12/24/18 at $1.1426
12/06/19 at $1.1688
03/11 at $1.1937
05/04 at $1.0903
12/16/20 at $1.2196
01/04 at $1.2246
01/13 at $1.2156
02/04 at $1.2625
02/16 at $1.210
03/05 at $1.1915
04/01 at $1.1774
 
 
 
One British Pound was trading on:
 
12/24/18 at $1.2655
12/06/19 at $1.3819
02/07 at $1.3574
03/11 at $1.354
03/18 at $1.2665
03/24 at $1.2231
12/16/20 at $1.3494
01/04 at $1.3571
01/13 at $1.3635
02/04 at $1.3659
02/16 at $1.3903
03/05 at $1.3841
04/01 at $1.3832
 
 
 
One USD versus the CAD at:
 
1.3442 on 12/24/18
1.2530 on 12/06/19
1.2390 on 01/17/20
1.3020 on 03/11
1.3540 on 03/18
1.2752 on 12/16/20
1.2787 on 01/04
1.2703 on 01/13
1.2837 on 02/04
1.2691 on 02/16
1.2659 on 03/05
1.2548 on 04/01
 
 
For Gold prices, I have decided to put this in list form, but maintain a trimmed list of dates with prices.
 
10/02/19 $1498.70/ounce
03/11/20 $1,641/ounce
07/27/20 a record $1,944.71/ounce
11/10/20 $1,880.30
11/30/20 $1,774.00
12/16/20 $1,858.20
01/04/21 a new record $1,948.00
01/13/21 $1,848.70
02/04/21 $1,796.20
02/16/21 $1,793.60
03/05/21 $1,698.70
04/01/21 $1,730.00
 
 
Bitcoin was trading at (around Repo Commentary Dates):
  
$8,185.21 on 7/25/18
$6,350 on 10/5/18
$3,774.97 on 12/24/18
$3,774.97 on 01/07/19
$3,598.90 on 01/16
$3,421.10 on 02/06
$3,826.44 on 02/26
$8,100.00 on 05/16
$7,215.79 on 05/17
$9,088.59 on 06/18
$11,919.30 on 06/25
$9,790.37 on 07/24
$10,183.90 on 09/10
$8,235.46 on 10/02
$7,470.41 on 12/06
$8,876.87 on 01/17/20
$9,793.18 on 02/07/20
$7,871.60 on 03/11/20
$5,216.64 on 03/18/20
$6,728.03 on 03/24/20
$6,646.60 on 03/27/20
$6,443.44 on 03/31/20
$6,908.13 on 04/12/20
$7,128.45 on 04/19/20
$7,748.29 on 04/27/20
$8,775.36 on 05/04/20
$8,771.73 on 05/10/20
$9,525.54 on 05/20/20
$9,794.46 on 06/04/20
$10,849.00 on 07/27/20
$15,160.90 on 11/10/20
$19,411.50 on 11/30/20
$20,665.10 on 12/16/20
$31,592.20 on 01/04/21
$36,433.00 on 01/13/21
$36,607.50 on 02/04/21
$48,526.90 on 02/16/21
$58,093.71 on 02/21/21
$43,170.01 on 02/28/21
$49,207.43 on 03/05/21
$58,979.60 on 04/01/21
 
 
 
After rebounding in 2019 dramatically since the beginning of the year, although certainly not to its $19,000 high, Bitcoin hit a wall at the beginning of the Summer of 2019, then rallied during the Summer, and tumbled again in Q4, and had rallied in early in 2020.  It then gave up all of those 2020 gains with the COVID-19 contagion. It rallied sharply in the last few weeks before the ‘halving event’ on 5/12/20, its 3rd halving event.  On 3/13/20, it had cratered at $3,867.  But, Bitcoin appears to be replacing Gold as the safe-haven of choice for some investors from the weakening US dollar and risk of rising inflation. There is also growing interest from institutional investors. Crypto firms got more funding last quarter than in all of 2020. The price of Bitcoin fell about $2,000 within a 5-minute period on Wednesday, which prompted liquidations of some long positions amounting to an estimated $600 million. Analysts still believe a target of $60,000 for April is still possible.
 
 
Brexit:
 
 
The
 
 
Global Financial News:
 
 
Susan Estes points out that concerns are growing over ETFs that may have illiquid holdings and the ability of investors to differentiate those ETFs from ones who have securities which are easy to trade. China has approved the merger of two chemical giants, creating a $150 billion company, paving the way for another supersize state-run enterprise and the potential for China to become a dominant global player. The SEC has opened a preliminary investigation into Bill Hwang over the margin call calamity that’s still roiling Wall Street. Archegos made a series of wrong-way wagers that prompted broker/dealers to liquidate its positions. They ultimately faced margin calls that they could not meet, prompting banks, like Goldman Sachs, to liquidate positions through a series of block trades. One of Credit Suisse’s biggest shareholders said losses from the Archegos Capital crisis could lead to sweeping changes. Credit Suisse and Nomura, which served as brokers for Hwang’s bets and lent him huge amounts of money, are now warning shareholders that they face “significant” losses. Unlike others, Deutsche Bank revealed it dodged a $4 billion bullet in one huge deal, helping it emerge unscathed from the debacle. One of the main issues at hand is regulatory oversight, as Hwang was able to amass tens of billions of dollars in these wrong-way stock bets, while not disclosing his positions to other market participants, by entering into Total Return swaps transactions with banks. TRS are often used in place of Repo. Those swaps allow investors to get exposure to price moves without actually buying shares of the companies. Also, because Hwang operated out of a family office, he was exempt from registering with the SEC or filing a confidential document with the agency, a form PF, that other asset managers, private-equity firms, and hedge funds must file with the SEC. The riskiest US junk bonds are now outperforming just about everything. Overall, Q1 figures show that in general there was stronger risk appetite among large and small investors. Wall Street’s $100 billion SPAC boom is rearranging the league tables, as Citi jumps to No.1 and UBS falls out of top 10. China’s commodities binge has caused a major problem for the US spending plan in the future, as China got to raw materials first.
 
 
US Market News:
 
 
US jobless claims rose, as the labor market recovery remains choppy. At levels above the magic 30,000, the Dow is now well above its pre-pandemic peak of 29,569. It has just backed off a little from its record high cracking of 33,000.  
 
Here are the latest DJIA closes, just to demonstrate the massive volatility (this is the next list I intend to trim to just important dates):
 
 
03/31/21  32,981.55
03/05/21   31,496.30
02/16/21  31,522.75
02/03/21  30,723.60
01/13/21   31,060.47
12/31/20   30,606.48
12/15/20   30,199.31
12/01/20   29,823.92
11/09/20   29,157.97
07/24/20   26,469.89
07/23/20 26,652.33
07/22/20   27,005.84
07/21/20   26,840.40
07/20/20   26,680.87
07/17/20   26,671.95
07/16/20   26,734.71
07/15/20   26,870.10
07/14/20   26,642.59
07/13/20   26,085.80
07/10/20   26,075.30
07/09/20   25,706.09
07/08/20   26,067.28
07/07/20   25,890.18
07/06/20   26,287.03
07/02/20   25,827.36
07/01/20   25,734.97
06/30/20   25,812.88
06/29/20   25,595.80
06/26/20   25,015.55
06/25/20   25,745.60
06/24/20   25,445.94
06/23/20   26,156.10
06/22/20   26,024.96
06/19/20   25,871.46
06/18/20   26,080.10
06/17/20   26,119.61
06/16/20   26,289.98
06/15/20   25,763.16
06/12/20   25,605.54
06/11/20   25,128.17
06/10/20   26,989.99
06/09/20   27,272.30
06/08/20   27,572.44
06/05/20   27,110.98
6/04/20     26,281.82
6/03/20     26,269.89
6/02/20     25,742.65
6/01/20     25,475.02
5/29/20     25,383.11
5/28/20     25,400.64
5/27/20     25,548.27
5/26/20     24,995.11
5/22/20     24,465.16
5/21/20     24,474.12
5/20/20     24,575.90
5/19/20     24,206.86
5/18/20     24,597.37
5/15/20     23,685.42
5/14/20     23,625.34
5/13/20     23,247.57
5/12/20     23,764.76
5/11/20     24,221.99
5/08/20     24,331.32
5/07/20     23,875.89
5/06/20     23,664.64
5/05/20     23,883.09
5/04/20     23,749.76
5/01/20     23,723.69
4/30/20     24,345.72
4/29/20     24,633.86
4/28/20     24,101.55
4/27/20     24,133.78
4/24/20     23,775.27
4/23/20     23,515.26
4/22/20     23,475.82
4/21/20     23,018.88
4/20/20     23,650.44
4/17/20     24,242.49
4/16/20     23,537.68
4/15/20     23,504.35
4/14/20     23,949.76
4/13/20     23,390.77
4/10/20     market closed
4/09/20    23,719.37
4/08/20     23,433.57
4/07/20     22,653.86
4/06/20     22,679.99
4/03/20     21,052.53
4/02/20     21,413.44
4/01/20     20,943.51
3/31/20     21,917.16
3/30/20     22,327.48
3/27/20     21,636.78
3/26/20     22,552.17
3/25/20     21,200.55
3/24/20     20,704.91
3/23/20    18,591.93
3/20/20    19,173.98
3/19/20    20,087.19
3/18/20     19,898.92
3/17/20     21,237.38
3/16/20     20,188.52
3/13/20     23,185.62
3/12/20     21,200.62
3/11/20     23,553.22
3/10/20     25,018.16
3/09/20     23,851.02
3/06/20     25,864.78
3/05/20     26,121.28
3/04/20     27,090.86
3/03/20     25,917.41
3/02/20     26,703.32
2/28/20     25,409.36
2/27/20     25,766.64
2/26/20     26,957.59
2/25/20     27,081.36
2/24/20     27,960.80
2/21/20     28,992.41
2/20/20     29,219.98
2/19/20     29,348.03
2/12/20     29,551.42 record high
 
 
 
 
S&P 500 has closed on (trimmed list):
 
10/5/18 at 2,885.58
12/26/18 at 2,467.70
12/06/19 at 3,145.91
02/07/20 at 3,335.27 down 10.51 from new all-time high
03/23/20 at 2,237.40
12/15/20 at 3,647.49
01/13/21 at 3,809.84
02/03/21 at 3,830.17
02/16/21 at 3,923.59
03/05/21 at 3,841.94
03/31/21 at 3,972.89
 
 
S&P has regained everything it lost since 3/11 pandemic announcement, and more, breaking above the high set in early September 2020.  It set a record on 12/8 of 3,702.25, then backed off, then shot higher again to a new record 02/16.  It has continued to be up at new record highs. Today, S&P 500 surged past a record 4,000.
 
 
Nasdaq closed on (trimmed list):
 
10/5/18 at 7,788.45
12/26/18 at 6,554.36
12/06/19 at 8,656.07
02/07/20 at 9,555.96 down 16.19 from new all-time high
03/23/20 at 6,860.67
06/04/20 at 9,615.81 don’t look now, but we have set a new record high, above the previous high of 2/07/20!
12/15/20 at 12.505.06
01/13/21 at 13,128.95
02/03/21 at 13,610.54
02/16/21 at 14,047.50  new record high
03/05/21 at 12,920.15
03/31/21 at 13,246.87
 
The US Treasury market’s steepening has continued, as long duration securities rise in yield, while the short-end is still pinned.
 
 
2 YEAR NOTES closed on (trimmed list):
 
10/5/18 at 2.88%
12/18/18 at 2.65%
12/06/19 at 1.61%
02/06/20 at 1.44%
03/11/20 at 0.50%
03/17/20 at 0.47%
03/23/20 at 0.28% wow!
05/10/20 at 0.16% historic low
07/24/20 at 0.14% new historic low
12/15/20 at 0.11% wow really low!
01/04/21 at 0.11%
01/13/21 at 0.14%
02/03/21 at 0.11%
02/16/21 at 0.11%
03/05/21 at 0.14%
03/31/21 at 0.16%
 
 
3 YEAR NOTES closed on:
 
10/5/18 at 2.99%
12/18/18 at 2.64%
01/07/19 at 2.47% (inverted to 2years)
12/06/19 at 1.64%
02/06/20 at 1.43%
03/11/20 at 0.58%
03/17/20 at 0.54%
03/23/20 at 0.31% wow!
05/10/20 at 0.21%
07/24/20 at 0.17% wow!
11/09/20 at 0.25%
12/15/20 at 0.18% wow!
01/04/21 at 0.16% record low!
01/13/21 at 0.22%
02/03/21 at 0.17%
02/16/21 at 0.17%
03/05/21 at 0.32%
03/31/21 at 0.35%
 
 
 
5 YEAR NOTES closed on:
 
10/5/18 at 3.07%
12/18/18 at 2.65%
12/06/19 at 1.67%
02/07/20 at 1.45%
03/11/20 at 0.66%
03/17/20 at 0.56%
03/23/20 at 0.38%
03/26/20 at 0.51%
03/31/20 at 0.37%
07/24/20 at 0.27% wow!
12/15/20 at 0.37%
01/04/21 at 0.36%
01/13/21 at 0.48%
02/03/21 at 0.46%
02/16/21 at 0.42%
03/05/21 at 0.79%
03/31/21 at 0.92%
 
 
7 YEAR NOTES closed on:
 
10/5/18 at 3.18%
12/18/18 at 2.74%
12/06/19 at 1.78%
02/06/20 at 1.56%
03/11/20 at 0.78%
03/17/20 at 0.91%
03/23/20 at 0.63%
03/26/20 at 0.72%
03/31/20 at 0.55%
07/24/20 at 0.44%
11/09/20 at 0.70% back to near pre-COVID level
12/15/20 at 0.64%
01/04/21 at 0.64%
01/13/21 at 0.80%
02/03/21 at 0.81%
02/16/21 at 0.76%
03/05/21 at 1.23%
03/31/21 at 1.40%
 
 
10 YEAR NOTES closed on:
 
10/5/18 at 3.23%
12/18/18 at 2.82%
09/09/19 at 1.83%
10/01/19 at 1.65% dramatic drop in one month!
12/06/19 at 1.84% dramatic rise in two months!
02/06/20 at 1.65% and back down again!
03/11/20 at 0.82%
03/17/20 at 1.02% and back up again
03/23/20 at 0.76% and back down again
07/24/20 at 0.59%
11/09/20 at 0.96% back to pre-COVID level
12/15/20 at 0.92%
01/04/21 at 0.93%
01/13/21 at 1.10%
02/03/21 at 1.15%
02/16/21 at 1.09%
03/05/21 at 1.56%
03/31/21 at 1.74%
 
 
30 YEAR BONDS closed on:
 
10/5/18 at 3.40%
12/18/18 at 3.07%
07/24/19 at 2.58%
09/10/19 at 2.11%
12/06/19 at 2.29%
02/06/20 at 2.11%
03/11/20 at 1.30%
03/17/20 at 1.63% way up!
03/23/20 at 1.33% back down
07/24/20 at 1.23%
11/09/20 at 1.73% back to pre-COVID level
12/15/20 at 1.65%
01/04/21 at 1.66%
01/13/21 at 1.82%
02/03/21 at 1.92%
02/16/21 at 1.84%
03/05/21 at 2.28%
03/31/21 at 2.41%
                                                                                   
 
Housing News:
 
The Working-From-Home phenomenon continues, as people realize if they can work from home, why shouldn’t that home be out of the cold Northeast or taxing California, and have stepped up an exodus to Arizona and Florida, so I’m hearing from realtors in both states. Construction, partly because of skyrocketing prices on materials due to COVID-19 shutdowns, cannot keep up with the demand. Pending home sales dropped 10.6% from January, with all major regions showing a decline. Experts say the decline was attributed to very low inventory. New home sales also plunged 18.2%, but yet demand remained strong. Home prices saw their highest gain in nearly 15 years. The delinquency rate rose for the first time in 9 months. Existing home sales fell 6.6%, again on weak supply. Some experts think that the great refi boom may be over. Vacation towns and suburbs have seen the largest housing increases. Fannie Mae says that housing market confidence should rise soon.
 
 
Repo/Securities Financing News:                               
 
 
Okay, I won’t run another ad for it, since I ran it at the top of this Repo Commentary.  Please just take a look at: https://www.pierpoint.info/courses/the-fundamentals-of-repo.
 
Well, we got through another quarter-end. This was subdued compared to past ones, as there is a collateral shortage, and it’s probably not going away soon. The tax filing date was moved from 4/15 to 5/17, but the Fed is continuing to buy $120 billion in securities every month and US Treasury is actually now paying down debt, at least for the next month, instead of issuing more or the Fed issuing CM bills. That could leave GC repo rates near zero percent for a month or two. State Street’s, Darren Wilson, has moved from EMEA cash and liquidity sales team to the funding and collateral solutions desk, under Staffan Ahiner. DataLend says that securities finance revenues are up 10% in Q1 year/year, mostly due to the IPOs, SPACs, and short squeezes of January. Those squeeze events on various stocks helped boost Equities Trading revenues by 8% too, compared to 2020 Q1. The FCA is launching a UK SPAC consultation, increasing scrutiny and potential regulations, for an area that has been a valuable revenue stream for Securities Lending participants. Women in Securities Finance has unveiled a new website, womeninsecuritiesfinance.com. ISLA and ICMA are warning that the grace period for including 3rd party LEIs must be extended again beyond April, because of big gaps in the data. ICMA published its first post-Brexit update to its SFTR guide. The final phase of the EU’s SFTR went live in January, which brought in non-financial counterparties. That actually widened the regulatory divergence between EU and UK with Brexit. EACH has responded for the industry to the European Commission Inception Impact Assessment on the current CSDR SDR. Broadridge has partnered with AccessFintech, to automate settlement fails, which will help with compliance to CSDR requirements. It appears that the majority of the industry polled are in favor of buy-ins for Fails to become voluntary. Bursa Malaysia has extended its intraday shorting ban. Citi is looking for a global head of Agency Lending Operations.
 
Securities Finance Industry Conferences
 
The Securities Financing industry had all of these annual conferences, several for many years, which used to be attended by thousands of firms, colleagues, and peers. After the financial crisis, the numbers of participants decreased, as firms’ budgets were reduced. Some of the conferences were excellent networking opportunities and some had extremely valuable panels and current information and issues being discussed. Some of the more recent ones focused information and questions on specific sectors to be more effective. There was also a major emphasis recently by many of the conferences on diversity and women’s participation in the industry. Unfortunately, COVID-19 led to the banishing of gatherings worldwide, and these conferences were cancelled or held for free virtually.  That isn’t a viable business plan for conference organizers though, as it can be costly to put these events on. So, our market is looking for other solutions to networking, discussing the pressing issues, and finding solutions for peers. Pierpoint Alpha Community is one such new solution.
 
 
·       Deutsche Borse/Clearstream/Securities Lending Times held their annual GFF Summit in Luxembourg, 1/28-1/30/20.  They just did their 2021 version virtually for the first time.
·       Global Investor Group held a virtual Buyside Repo & Regulatory Forum on 3/24.  conference was held in Fort Lauderdale, FL on 2/12-2/13/20.
 
 
Federal Reserve News:
 
 
The Fed Funds rate, which is still the target rate of Federal Reserve monetary policy and changes to which are made by and announced by the FOMC at regularly scheduled meetings, is currently set at 0.00-0.25% (remember, the Fed has been using a target ‘range’ for a while). The Federal Reserve posts an Effective Fed Funds Rate (EFFR).  The Overnight Bank Funding Rate (OBFR), is also published by the NY Fed to capture the volume-weighted median of overnight federal funds transactions, Eurodollar transactions, and the domestic deposits reported by banks. 
 
 
The next FOMC meetings are: 04/28/21, 06/16/21, 07/28/21, 09/22/21, 11/03/21, and 12/15/21. All of the meetings are two-day meetings. I have listed the 2nd day. However, as we saw on 3/3/20, the FOMC can call emergency meetings at any time, even on weekends, especially during the pandemic crisis we are in. 
 
The Federal Reserve’s Reverse Repo Facility (RRP), which has over 300 approved participants (mostly banks, GSEs, and MMFs) is used as a tool by the Federal Reserve, along with its Fed Funds target-setting monetary policy, and IOER for depository institutions, to help control short-term interest rates. The Fed is currently only repoing out US Treasuries from its portfolio and typically only Overnight.
 
The Federal Reserve is increasing attention to banks’ actions in phasing out LIBOR, reportedly calling on the banks for details on their progress in the phase-out, what exposure to LIBOR they still have, their plans for shifting contracts to another benchmark, and fallback language they are using. Barrons ran an article about how a regulatory tweak by the Fed and other regulators could have huge consequences for the US financial system. Monetary policy, coupled with US government borrowing, and capital rules, could push deposits and payments away from banks and into money funds. It could also put the Fed in a much more central role.
 
 
Earthquakes and Volcanoes:
 
 
Here are significant earthquakes for just two days. A little quieter than it has been previously:
 
04/01 6.0 Fiji region
04/01 4.8 WSW of Guelma, Algeria
04/01 4.6 W of Tobelo, Indonesia
04/01 4.7 SSE of Astypalaia, Greece
04/01 5.4 SE of Sarangani, Philippines
04/01 6.5 Kermadec Islands, New Zealand
04/01 4.6 Volcano Islands, Japan
04/01 4.8 ENE of Mutsu, Japan
03/31 4.9 SSW of Merizo Village, Guam
03/31 4.9 ENE of Iquique, Chile
03/31 4.7 WSW of Tual, Indonesia
03/31 4.7 W of La Libertad, Mexico
03/31 4.7 SE of Loyalty Islands
03/31 5.2 SSW of Merizo Village, Guam
03/31 5.1 Owen Fracture Zone
03/31 4.6 Fiji region
03/31 4.5 NW of Las Ovejas, Argentina
 
 
 
Weather:
 
                                                                                
The death toll from those Texas winter storms has now surpassed 100 people. Critical fire weather conditions exist across portions of the Northern and Southern Plains today. Record-breaking cold temperatures will spread across areas of the Lower Mississippi River Valley and extend to the Northeast over the next few days. Even Florida, which nearly broke record highs earlier this week, reaching 88-90, will cool off about 10 degrees. Otherwise, the weather across the contiguous US this weekend and into early week will be quiet.
 
 
 
The Atlantic Hurricane Season begins June 1st and ends November 30th.  According to Accuweather, the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season was expected to have a more-active-than-normal season. They expected about 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 4 of them major hurricanes.  CSU predicted 16 named storms in the Atlantic, with 8 to become Hurricanes, and 4 to reach Category 3 or above strength. 
Instead, 2020 was a record year, not only with the pandemic, but also in meteorology. There were 30 tropical or subtropical cyclones, 30 named tropical storms, 14 hurricanes, and 6 major hurricanes. There were also 12 US landfalls, which broke the 2016 record of 9. 28 named storms was the previous record, held by the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season as the most active, and 2020 was also only the second hurricane season to have to use the Greek letter storm-naming system, after running out of the assigned names in the alphabetical system. To put this in perspective, an average Atlantic hurricane season produces only 12 named Tropical Storms, so 2020 was 250% more active than average.
 
 
Since 1900, tropical Atlantic Ocean temperatures have increased by 2 degrees Fahrenheit. There was no El Nino this year in the tropical Pacific Ocean, which usually means that the strong upper-level winds (wind shear) produced did not make it over to the Atlantic Ocean to battle hurricane formation. A La Nina formed late this hurricane season in the Pacific Ocean, which contributed to stronger storms in the latter half of the Atlantic Ocean season. The National Hurricane Center estimates there have only been 37 Category 5 storms in the last 170 years in the Atlantic Ocean. However, we have had 7 Category 5 storms in just the last five years!
 
 
The Pacific Hurricane Season starts 5/1/21 and ends 11/1/21. There are no tropical cyclones currently in the Eastern North Pacific or Central North Pacific.
 
 
 
Sports News:       
 
 
 
MLB:
 
 
The 2019 MLB regular season began on 3/28 of that year and ended on 9/30 (more than 6 months).  The Washington Nationals beat The Houston Astros in 7 games in The World Series. As these 2 teams play each other in the Spring Training facility that they share (and where I sing the National Anthem at), I was delighted to sing a few games there, before the 2020 Spring Training season (and eventually MLB season) was shut down about 3/15, with the pandemic. Then, MLB cancelled the Minor League seasons for all 3 levels of the Minors.
 
 
MLB finally came to an agreement with the MLBPA, and played a Summer Camp (short Spring Training) leading up to a 60-game, shortened, regular season of the 30 teams still aligned in 6 divisions, and still with AL and NL distinctions, which re-started 7/23/20. The games were played without fans, but the teams still travelled and didn’t not have the ‘Bubble Format’ of the NHL and NBA. That proved to be a mistake, as many games had to be postponed, doubleheadered, or cancelled for several teams, as COVID-19 outbreaks ran through teams.  This “asterisked regular season” ended on 9/27/20. In the World Series, the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Tampa Rays 4 games to 3, to win in another exciting (and rare) 7-game series.
 
 
For 2021, it was decided by MLB that in the Grapefruit League (Spring Training-Florida), the teams on the East coast would only play each other and the teams on the West coast would only play each other. So, the Astros, Cardinals, Marlins, Mets, and Nationals will play each other, and not travel to other ballparks, just these 3 parks in West Palm Beach, Jupiter, and Port St. Lucie.  They will play 24 games in 30 days.  The other 8 teams in the Grapefruit League in Florida on the West Coast will be split into two groups (Tigers/Yankees/Phillies/Blue Jays and Braves/Red Sox/Twins/Rays) and will play each other 28 games over the 30-day span. MLB eliminated the use of college baseball teams in the revised schedules, because they haven’t been subject to MLB testing protocols. Also eliminated were split-squad games, which allow for the evaluation of more players. I see another ‘asterisk’ season on the way. The exhibition season began for all teams on 2/28. I was honored to be chosen by the Spring Training Facility of the Cardinals and Marlins to come in and be officially videotaped for the scoreboard performance of the National Anthem and “God Bless America”, and that performance will be presented at the 3/26 Mets @ Marlins game.
 
The 162-game schedule for 2021 begins today, about a month later than usual. The Players Association finally got the owners to relent on the 154-game schedule. MLB is welcoming fans back to all 30 ballparks for Opening Day. The commissioner is hopeful for full stadiums in 2021, possibly without fan restrictions by mid-season. Players are going to be following very strict guidelines regarding COVID-19 precautions. Baseball is also donating $1.5 million in tickets to frontline and essential workers throughout the season to show appreciation for their herculean efforts. Marlins Park has been renamed here in Miami to loanDepot park, a mixture of bad grammar. MLB is finally about to implement the Designated Hitter for the National League, something which has been around in the American League since 1973, and something which has triggered many debates about the purity of the game. One side says it removes the nearly automatic out and increases offensive production, while the other side says it lets the pitcher avoid hitting and facing retribution for pitches he may have thrown at opposing batters. The players and the MLB now appear to largely favor a universal DH. The only thing holding the rule back is MLB owners withholding the DH rule from the NL, unless the players union agrees to an expanded playoff format in 2021. Basically, that’s trying to swap one rule, favored by almost all, for a rule that only favors the greedy owners. The Mets have agreed to a 10-year contract extension for $341 million with Francisco Lindor. The Red Sox opening day with the Orioles, schedule for 4/1, has been postponed to Friday, because of expected rain. Mookie Betts, one of my favorite former Red Sox players, has an MVP trophy, and now 2 World Series Championship rings. He also has baseball’s most popular jersey.
 
Golf:
 
 
The PGA Tour 2021 season rolls on. The PGA played the popular local Honda Classic at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens, FL (just up the road from me and about 7 of the Tour golfers). Yet, many of the locals did not actually play in the tournament this year (Woods, Koepka, Thomas, Kaufman, DJ, Schwartzel, etc.). The first two were injured, but 20 of the top 30 golfers in the country live here in Palm Beach County. Aussie golfer, Matt Jones, ended a 7-year Tour win drought, with a great performance at the Honda Classic, winning in dominating fashion.  He got a tidy $1.6 million winner’s check and an entry to this year’s Masters. The 40-year-old opened with an amazing 61 on the very difficult course. Tiger Woods reportedly feels better after followup procedures on his leg. The cause of his automobile crash in California has now been discovered (as of 3/31), but detectives aren’t revealing it, unless Tiger signs off on the disclosure. Greg Norman says it’s time to move on, and is heading home to Australia, after selling his Jupiter Island estate for $77 million and his Colorado ranch for $52 million, in the past month. The Tour’s last tuneup before the Masters is this weekend’s Valero Texas Open at TPC San Antonio, starting today (Thursday). Next week is the Masters.
 
 
LPGA great, Annika Sorenstam, returned from a 13-year retirement, to play in last month’s Gainbridge LPGA, which was at her home course of Lake Nona, in Orlando, FL. The Hall-of-Famer had not competed in an official tournament since 2008. She made the cut, which is pretty impressive, but the winner of the tournament was 
 
This is wild! They just held the 2021 Seminole Pro-Member private tournament at the famed Seminole Golf Club, up the street here in North Palm Beach and these were the pairings (with some notable famous names):
 

 
 
 
 
NFL:
 
 
The 100th NFL season ended last year, in Miami, in an entertaining 31-20 comeback Super Bowl victory for the Kansas City Chiefs over the San Francisco 49ers. The 2020 season began with no preseason games, with teams in their own stadiums, but with limited numbers of fans. I think the NFL made a huge mistake (I know I keep saying it), just like MLB, in not playing in a bubble like the NBA and NHL.
 
 
Super Bowl LV was played in Tampa Bay on Sunday, with the Bucs acting as home team, the first time that a Super Bowl was played in the city where one of the teams was from. Despite the odds against it and his age against him, QB Tom Brady and the Buccaneers won the Super Bowl over the Chiefs, 31-9. Tom Brady was named Super Bowl MVP, as he won his 7th Super Bowl, more than any franchise, let alone any player, in 10 trips to the Super Bowl.
 
I just read an article a few days ago that said all 11 offensive starters for the Tampa Bay Bucs will be returning next season. But, today I read that WR Antonio Brown has been talking with the Bucs, but they are currently far apart on how much money to pay him. The veteran WR market is somewhere between DeSean Jackson’s one year/$4.5 million contract with Los Angeles, to T.Y. Hilton’s one year/$8 million contract in Indianapolis. LSU WR Ja’Marr Chase said he “wouldn’t mind” a reunion with QB Joe Burrow in Cincinnati. Patriots’ owner Robert Kraft said “I don’t feel like we’ve done the greatest job the last few years” in the Draft. Giants’ John Mara said he is waiting for the “appropriate time” to discuss Saquon Barkley extension.
 
 
 
Tennis
 
 
The 2021 tennis season is now in full swing, although not always with fans in the stadiums. The first major of the year, the Australian Open was, delayed 3 weeks by COVID-19, and ended 2/21.  Novak Djokovic successfully defended his Men’s singles title, claiming his 18th Grand Slam title, edging closer to Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer who both have 20 Grand Slam titles each.  In Women’s singles, the Final was won by Naomi Osaka, her 4th Grand Slam title. Down in Miami, Sakkari stopped Osaka’s long win streak with a shutout in the first set. Serena Williams has revealed in an interview that her marriage is “not bliss”. Iron Woman Andreescu has beaten Muguruza to make the Miami quarterfinals. Bautista Agut beat Medvedev in Miami quarterfinal. Bianca Andreescu outlasted Sorribles Tormo for Miami Open semifinal. Roland Garros Stadium and the French Open is still on for the “scheduled dates”, as France re-enters pandemic lockdown.
 
 
NCAA Basketball
 
 
The 2020-2021 season began in November. The 2021 NCAA tournament, March Madness, will continue in April and will be entirely in Indianapolis. We are nearing the end. We have reached the FINAL FOUR, which will be played 4/3. The Championship will be on 4/5. After the 11th seed UCLA, who knocked off my Michigan State in the first round, edged No.2 seed Michigan (and ranked No.2 in the nation), No.1 seed and rank Gonzaga crushed No.5 seed USC, No.1 seed Baylor beat No.3 seed Arkansas, and No.2 seed Houston beat Cinderella team No.12 seed Oregon State, we are left with the final four teams:
 
No.1 Gonzaga will face No.11 UCLA
No.1 Baylor will face No.2 Houston
 
 
These were the latest AP Top 25 Rankings is as of 02/07/21:
 
1.    Gonzaga (24-0)
2.    Michigan (18-2)
3.    Baylor (19-1)
4.    Illinois (19-6)
5.    Iowa (18-7)
6.    West Virginia (17-7)
7.    Ohio State (18-7)
8.    Alabama (20-6)
9.    Houston (20-3)
10.                 Villanova (16-4)
11.                 Florida State (15-4)
12.                 Arkansas (20-5)
13.                 Kansas (18-8)
14.                 Creighton (17-7)
15.                 Texas (15-7)
16.                 Oklahoma (14-8)
17.                 Oklahoma State (17-6)
18.                 Texas Tech (16-8)
19.                 San Diego State (20-4)
20.                 Loyola IL (21-4)
21.                 Virginia (16-6)
22.                 Virginia Tech (15-5)
23.                 Purdue (17-8)
24.                 Colorado (19-7)
25.                 Wisconsin (16-10)
 
 
A new league, the Overtime Elite League is making some news, proposing to pay high school basketball players $100,000 salaries and a focus toward a pro basketball career, which organizers feel might me more appealing to players than college basketball programs. The OTE would be backed by a sports media company, Overtime, and is obviously intensifying the debate over whether student athletes should be paid. Overtime intends to compete directly with the NCAA for the nation’s top high school basketball players, by employing about 30 of them, to circumvent the college sports scene. Overtime will offer each athlete, some as young as 16, a minimum of $100,000 annually, as well as a signing bonus and some shares in the overall company. The company will also provide athletes with health and disability insurance, and will set aside $100,000 in college scholarship money for each player, in case any decide not to pursue the NBA.  Overtime was founded in 2016 and got an early investment from David Stern, the former NBA commissioner. Its videographers have been filming high school players all over the country. The larger debate is whether it is appropriate for pro sports leagues to grab young athletes out of high school and college with big checks, or for colleges to exploit the talents of athletes for big revenues without compensating the athletes. Since 2006 draft, the NBA has not been able to go after athletes until they turn 19 or one year after their high school graduation.
 
Olympics:
 
The Olympic Torch began its 121-day journey around Japan this week, leading up to the opening of the Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
 
NHL:
 
Last season (2019-2020) ended in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals on 6/12/19, when the St. Louis Blues beat my Bruins 4-3 in the Finals. The puck dropped on the asterisk season on 10/2/19. The puck dropped (again) to conclude this past season on 8/1/20. The teams played in the modified playoffs in two bubble arenas in Toronto and Edmonton, without fans. The Stanley Cup was won by the Tampa Bay Lightning (who ousted my Bruins, due to the Presidents Cup curse) over the Dallas Stars, 4 games to 2. The Finals were held in the Edmonton bubble, without fans.
 
 
The 2021 NHL season (which normally would have started in 2020 and wrapped around to 2021) was delayed and started 1/13/21.  The regular season is normally 82 games, but will only be 56 games this year, once again due to the pandemic. There have already been many cancelled or postponed games, due to COVID-19 racing through some of the teams. There was also divisional realignment to limit team matchups to intra-division play and minimize team travel as much as possible, due to the pandemic.  However, this realignment had been discussed for a few years now. Remember, there were two Conferences with weird names for 4 Divisions of each, to get to (now) 31 teams. This is this season’s odd configuration. The top 4 teams from each division make the playoffs:
 
NORTH (all Canadian) (their current standings 32-37 games into the regular season)
 
Toronto Maple Leafs
Winnipeg Jets
Edmonton Oilers
Montreal Canadiens
Calgary Flames
Vancouver Canucks
Ottawa Senators
 
WEST(and their current standings 33-37 games into the regular season)
 
Las Vegas Golden Knights
Colorado Avalanche
Minnesota Wild
St. Louis Blues
Arizona Coyotes
LA Kings
San Jose Sharks
Anaheim Mighty Ducks
 
CENTRAL (and their current standings 33-37 games into the regular season)
 
Tampa Bay Lightning
Florida Panthers
Carolina Hurricanes
Nashville Predators
Chicago Blackhawks
Columbus Blue Jackets
Dallas Stars
Detroit Red Wings
 
EAST (and their current standings 32-36 games into the regular season)
 
Washington Capitals
New York Islanders
Pittsburgh Penguins
Boston Bruins
Philadelphia Flyers
New York Rangers
New Jersey Devils
Buffalo Sabres
 
 
Flyers’ Shayne Gostisbehere has been surprisingly placed on waivers. Flyers’ Chuck Fletcher may be looking to make a big deal to shake up the team, which is in a major funk. That could involve Travis Sanheim of the Kings. John Tortorella’s time looks like it could be over with the Blue Jackets, although he pulled of an incredible win Tuesday night over the high-flying Lightning. The Panthers have had a great season, but now must face the loss of star Aaron Ekblad. The Sabres are in an 18-game winless streak. Alex Pietrangelo has returned to the Golden Knights.
 
 
NBA:
 
 
Last year, the NBA season did not start until 10/22/19, 18 days later than last year. We were nearing the playoffs, when the pandemic shut the regular season down, with just a little over a month left. Late 6/4/20, the NBA reportedly approved a 22-team format to restart the season in the Summer. All games were played at the three venues at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fl, starting 7/31. The modified playoff format for this asterisk season began on 10/12. In the end, the Miami Heat lost the Championship to the LA Lakers.
 
The NBA season tipped off again on 12/22/20. But, it is totally different. Fan attendance differs in every stadium, depending on different factors, including state COVID-19 guidelines. Dapper Labs, creator of NBA Top Shot, has received $305 million in funding. There is a rumor of a proposed 3-team blockbuster trade, that would send Bradley Beal to my Celtics in 2021 offseason from the Wizards. That would give Boston a Big Three of Tatum, Brown, and Beal. Suns’ Najafi committed $10 million contribution ($1 million per year/10 years) to the NBA Foundation, which will help drive empowerment for Black communities. The rate at which triple-doubles are occurring this season has increased nearly 700% from 9 years ago and 47% since last season. The Wizards’ Westbrook pulled off an incredible 35-14-21 triple-double. The airplane the Jazz were flying on had to turn back after hitting birds on takeoff. The tradeline just passed. Gordon went to the Nuggets, Spurs added veteran Dieng, and the Lakers picked up Drummond. After being just traded to the Hawks, his hometown team, Lou Williams was seriously considering retirement. But, he says he wants to help his hometown team make the playoffs. We’ve played 44-47 games so far in the regular season, and here are the current standings (top 8 of each conference):
 
EASTERN CONFERENCE
 
Philadelphia 76ers
Brooklyn Nets
Milwaukee Bucks
Charlotte Hornets
NY Knicks
Atlanta Hawks
 
Bubble teams:
Boston Celtics
Miami Heat
Indiana Pacers
Chicago Bulls
 
WESTERN CONFERENCE
 
Utah Jazz
Phoenix Suns
LA Clippers
LA Lakers
Denver Nuggets
Portland Trailblazers
 
Bubble teams:
Dallas Mavericks
San Antonia Spurs
Memphis Grizzlies
Golden State Warriors
 
    
 
Horse Racing:
 
 
After the strange order of the fanless Triple Crown races last year, due to COVID-19, 2021 Kentucky Derby will be held on 05/01 at Churchill Downs in Louisville, KY. The top 10-ranked contenders, so far, are:
 
1.Concert Tour-just crushed the field at 2021 Rebel Stakes and is another Bob Baffert trained horse
2.Essential Quality-just won 2021 Southwest Stakes
3.Life is Good-just won 2021 San Felipe, another Bob Baffert trained horse
4.Hot Rod Charlie-just won 2021 Louisiana Derby
5.Known Agenda-just won 2021 Florida Derby
6.Medina Spirit-came in 2nd at 2021 San Felipe, another Bob Baffert horse
7.Greatest Honour-came in 3rd 2021 Florida Derby
8.Soup and Sandwich-came in 2nd 2021 Florida Derby
9.Helium-just won 2021 Tampa Bay Derby
10.Like the King-just won 2021 Jeff Ruby Stakes
 
I looked at the names of the Sires and I don’t recognize any as superstar horses.
 
The other notable races leading up to the Kentucky Derby are:
 
4/3 Blue Grass Stakes
4/3 Santa Anita Derby
4/3 Wood Memorial
4/3 Blue Grass Stakes
4/10 Arkansas Derby
4/10 Lexington
 
 
Auto Racing:
 
 
In the NASCAR Cup Series of 2020, Chase Elliott won. His dad, Bill Elliott, won the championship in 1988. They became the 3rd father-son duo to win the title, joining the Petty’s (Lee and Richard) and Jarrett’s (Ned and Dale).  In 2019, Kyle Busch won in the last race at Homestead.  In 2018, the winner was Joey Logano, who beat Martin Truex Jr. in the final 15 laps of the final race at Homestead.  Truex Jr. won the crown in 2017.  The 2021 regular season began with the Daytona 500 on 2/14/21. Here is the 2021 schedule and winners:
 
02/09/21 Busch Clash at Daytona-Kyle Busch
02/11/21 Bluegreen Vacations Duel 1 at Daytona-Aric Almirola
02/11/21 Bluegreen Vacations Duel 2 at Daytona-Austin Dillon
02/14/21 DAYTONA 500-Michael McDowell
02/21/21 O’Reilly Auto Parts 253 at Daytona-Christopher Bell
02/28/21 DIXIE VODKA 400 at Homestead-Miami-William Byron
03/07/21 Pennzoil 400 by Jiffy Lube at Las Vegas-Kyle Larson
03/14/21 NASCAR Cup Series Race at Phoenix-Martin Truex Jr.
03/21/21 Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta-Ryan Blaney
03/29/21 Food City Dirt Race at Bristol-Joey Logano
04/10/21 Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500 at Martinsville, VA-
04/18/21 Toyota Owners 400-Richmond Raceway-
04/25/21 GEICO 500-Talladega-
 
 
Formula One began 2020 with F1 Car Launch Dates for the various teams from 2/12 through 2/15 for Renault, Racing Point, McLaren, and Ferrari.  That was followed by the Pre-Season Testing schedule.  The opening of the season coincided with the COVID-19 lockdown. Lewis Hamilton won his 7th World Title.  F1 will revert to 2pm start times in 2021. Matteo Pagliani was crowned inaugural F1 Mobile Racing Esports Champion. There will be a 23-race F1 calendar for 2021. It does not begin until 3/28/21. Here is the 2021 schedule and here are the winners:
 
03/28/21-Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix-Lewis Hamilton edged Max Verstappen
04/18/21-Italy-
05/02/21-TBD
05/09/21-Spain-
05/23/21-Monaco-
06/06/21-Azerbaijan-
06/13/21-Canada-
06/27/21-France-
07/04/21-Austria-
07/18/21-Great Britain-
08/02/21-Hungary-
08/29/21-Belgium-
09/05/21-Netherlands-
09/12/21-Italy-
09/26/21-Russia-
10/03/21-Singapore-
10/10/21-Japan-
10/24/21-United States
10/31/21-Mexico-
11/07/21-Brazil-
11/21/21-Australia-
12/05/21-Saudi Arabia-
12/12/21-Abu Dhabi-
 
 
IndyCar Racing circuit (Indy cars are generally considered faster than F1 car along straight lines, mostly because their races are on oval tracks, while F1 tracks are more intricate, requiring better brakes and more aerodynamic grip than Indy cars).  In 2019, Josef Newgarden came in 8th in the last race, to just edge out Simon Pagenaud for the championship. Scott Dixon was the Championship winner for 2020, edging out defending champion, Josef Newgarden. The 2021 season does not begin until mid-April. Here is the schedule and the winners:
 
04/17/21-Birmingham Barber Motorsports Park
04/24/21-St. Petersburg Street Course
05/01/21-Texas Motor Speedway
05/14/21-Indianapolis Motor Speedway-GP 1
05/29/21-Indy 500
06/12/21-Detroit Raceway on Belle Isle
06/19/21-Road America
07/03/21-Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
07/10/21-Toronto Exhibition Place
08/07/21-Nashville Street Course
08/13/21-Indianapolis GP 2
08/20/21-Gateway Motorsports Park
09/11/21-Portland International Raceway
09/18/21-Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
09/25/21-Streets of Long Beach
 
 
Travel News:
 
 
Virgin Hotels is doubling down on Scotland with a new Glasgow location. Utah is getting two new state parks and one is named after the State dinosaur (?). No, I’m not going to leave you hanging. It will be named Utahraptor State Park. I’ve heard of State birds, State flowers, State Governors, State Senators, State flags, State penitentiaries, and State animals, but not State dinosaurs. Apparently, this new park will be located where the dinosaur fossils were first found in 1975. The feathered dinosaur, which dwarfed the velociraptor, made famous by JURASSIC PARK, had nine-inch claws and could grow to 20 feet tall. Smithsonian Magazine reported, after scientists tossed around the name spielbergi (after the movie’s director) for the newly found species, finally decided to honor the State with Utahraptor ostrommaysi. Interestingly, the site was also used as a Conservation Corps Camp and “relocation” center during the internment of Japanese Americans during WWII, well before the fossils were found. Travel & Leisure reports from a survey by LuggageHero that these are the US airlines least likely to lose or damage your luggage: 1. Allegiant Air, 2. Southwest Airlines, 3. Hawaiian Air. These US airlines are the MOST likely to lose or damage your luggage: 1. American Airlines, 2. Envoy Air. TSA announced that it screened a record number of travelers for Spring Break 2021, as people cooped up during the pandemic are Breaking out. Unfortunately, the pandemic is not quite over and people are still dying. CDC is still reminding Americans to “limit” travel amid rise in COVID-19 cases in 33 States. Airlines are discussing reinstating change fees on lowest fare travel, all of which had been suspended due to the pandemic. Delta is resuming flights to Iceland for vaccinated travelers from Minneapolis, JFK, Boston, and other airports. Earlier this month, Iceland reopened its borders to vaccinated travelers from outside Europe’s Schengen Zone, including Americans. It is the first destination in Europe to do so for tourism purposes. In order to visit, and this will no doubt be important going forward for other countries (another reason that vaccine resisters may find their worlds shrinking), travelers must provide proof of a vaccination approved by the European Medicines Agency, which includes Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca, or Johnson & Johnson. Or, visitors can provide proof of recovery from COVID-19. So, that little index card with the dates of shots from the CDC is likely to prove very valuable to people. There have been conspiracy theories that you may need it for travel, for restaurant service, and maybe to obtain a job. Mount Rushmore has closed, not because President Trump is being added, but because firefighters are battling South Dakota wildfires nearby. Hundreds of residents have also had to evacuate their homes. I’m just looking at the picture and wondering why it seems like President Washington is turning his back on the other Presidents. Airbnb has launched new neurodiverse experiences to ensure virtual travel becomes more approachable for everyone. Etihad Airways may have just made one of the world’s most beautiful safety videos, filming it at the Louvre Abu Dhabi. Graduate Hotels is coming to NYC, bringing eclectic cool to Roosevelt Island. Vaccinated travelers will be allowed a beach getaway in Phuket in July. Speaking of the Louvre, the real one in Paris just put its entire collection online, so you can view it at home for free. Japan has become the latest country to issue digital vaccine passport. Disneyland Resort may be expanding in the near future. Royal Caribbean announced that it is launching new Mediterranean cruises for vaccinated travelers. Celebrity Cruises has announced June sailings to Greece.
 
 
I am keeping this part in as a Public Service Announcement for at least one more Repo Commentary.  The CDC has just added some Caribbean islands to its designation of “very high” risk for travel, now including (as of 2/2/21):
 
Afghanistan, Albania, Angola, Antigua, Argentina, Armenia, Aruba, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Barbuda, Bonaire, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burma (Myanmar), Canada, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chile, Colombia, Comoros, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Curacao, Denmark, Easter Island, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Finland, French Guinea, French Polynesia, Gabon, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Gibraltar, Greece, Guadeloupe, Guam, Guatemala, Guernsey, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Honduras, Hungary, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jersey, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kuwait, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mayotte, Mexico, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Mozambique, Namibia, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, North Korea, North Macedonia, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Reunion, Saint Barthelemy, Saint Lucia, Saint Martin, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Sint Maarten, Slovakia, Slovenia, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Czech Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Dominican Republic, Maderia Islands, The Netherlands, Turks and Caicos Islands, US Virgin Islands, United Kingdom, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and cruise ships.  (After typing all that out, I’m wondering if it would have just been easier to name the ones that were okay to travel to.)
 
The CDC uses Travel Health Notices to alert travelers to health threats around the world and has adapted its 3-level notice system to a 4-level system for COVID-19 and updated criteria for each level.
 
Level 4-Very High level of COVID-19, travelers should avoid all travel to these destinations
Level 3-High level of COVID-19, travelers should avoid all nonessential travel to these destinations
Level 2-Moderate level of COVID-19, travelers are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 and should avoid all nonessential travel to these destinations
Level 1-Low level of COVID-19, travelers should wear a mask, stay at least 6 feet apart from people who are not from your travel group, avoid crowds, wash their hands often or use hand sanitizer, and watch for signs of illness
 
 
Health News:  
 
 
As of this evening (3/30), globally, more than 2,796,431 people have died from COVID-19.  More than 127,880,539 people have been infected with COVID-19. In the US, confirmed cases of COVID-19 have surpassed 30.3 million people. Of that, US deaths from the pandemic have surpassed 550,371. The US has the most deaths from COVID-19 of any country in the world, followed by Brazil (313,866), Mexico (201,832), India (162,144), and UK (126,912). COVID-19 was in fact the third-leading cause of death in the US in 2020! You are, no doubt, hearing more about the variants of the virus SARS-CoV-2 that causes COVID-19 (UK, South Africa, Brazil, New York, California, etc.), which so far scientists believe the current vaccines will cover. Just as officials warned, the UK variant, which is the most contagious, is now the top 5 regions in the US, and responsible for 26% of all new infections, according to the CDC. However, scientists are beginning to agree that, because of the likelihood of more variants, that COVID-19 booster shots each year may be required, similar to taking the Flu shot. The reason behind that is that, unlike say a vaccine for measles, which works all the time, influenza shots have to be tweaked each year to identify the circulating strains, coordinated by the WHO, so as to change the structure of the vaccine every year. Latin America’s latest COVID-19 surge could be worse than last year’s, according to experts. Ontario has locked down due to a steep rise in COVID-19 cases and deaths.
 
In early March, the US started administering more than 2 million shots per day. The country surpassed President Biden’s initial goal of 100 million vaccines into arms in his first days, within 58 days. So, the President doubled his goal to 200 million shots by the end of April. He also has set a target date of May 1, 2021, for all US adults to be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. Here, in Florida, as of Monday 3/29, 40-year-olds and older are eligible. Currently, there are only 2 of 3 vaccines approved in the US for emergency purposes that require two shots for full 95-96% effectiveness, while the other vaccine, Johnson & Johnson, requires only one shot for full 76% effectiveness. The US continues to have the most COVID-19 cases and deaths, and cases have just risen again in 33 States. Globally, more than 559 million shots had been given by 3/30. There are 9 vaccines being administered globally to combat COVID-19.
 
Pfizer/BioNTech                72 countries
Oxford/AstraZeneca         71 countries
Moderna                             32 countries
Sinopharm                          19 countries
Sputnik V                            18 countries
Sinovac                               11 countries
Janssen                              2   countries
EpiVacCorona                   1   country
Covaxin (Bharat Biotech) 1   country
 
Germany and Canada have decided to limit the use of Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine for COVID-19 for anyone under 60-years-old. The German medicines regulator found 31 cases of a type of rare blood clot among the nearly 2.7 million people who had received the vaccine in Germany.
 
Regarding that WHO investigation, in conjunction with China authorities, into the cause of COVID-19, which produced only hundreds of pages of reports, the WHO says more work is needed to rule out a COVID-19 lab leak. Also, scientists in UK are researching in a clinical trial on whether we can mix the Pfizer-BioNTech and AstraZeneca vaccines. Public health experts are watching several COVID-19 hot spots around the country, including areas of Florida and Michigan, to determine if a 4th COVID-19 wave may be building. A Regeneron antibody cocktail may reduce COVID-19 hospitalization by 70%. Having given millions of people shots, authorities now are getting a really clear picture on what the possible near-term side effects of the shots can be. Moderna has found to sometimes create one or more of the following in some people: injection site pain, fatigue (sometimes major), headache, chills and fever, and aches and pains in muscles and joints. It has been noted in the data that older adults are less likely to experience side effects after vaccination. The reactions to the second shot for vaccines that require two shots are reportedly more intense. The Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are similarly mRNA vaccines, in which the first shot teaches the body how to recognize the COVID-19 virus, and the second shot (the “booster”) teaches the body the immune response by making a piece of SARS-CoV-2 protein. The Johnson & Johnson single shot vaccine reportedly is associated with milder side effects that the mRNA shots. I’ve researched the vaccines a great deal and the most important information I found, and it wasn’t easy, is that after the two shots vaccination or the one shot vaccination, recipients will be immunized in 14 days after the last shot. It is similar to the incubation of the virus and the immunization time of influenza shots. So, I’ll wait until 4/24 to return to a large fitness center. Great, Pfizer just announced this morning (4/1) that its vaccine protection lasts at least 6 months after 2nd shot. What happened to one year and then maybe boosters? It also announced that the COVID-19 vaccine is 100% effective in children 12-15-years-old.
 
In other health news, drinking caffeine during pregnancy has been associated with slightly lower birth weights, according to new research. Another new study has shown that eating nitrate-rich leafy greens can boost muscle function and strength.  The FDA has approved a new MS medication, a once-daily oral treatment. One in Seven adults are unaware that they have chronic kidney disease, which affects about 37 million people in the US. 90% of those people don’t know they have it. Viagra may help men with coronary artery disease live longer, according to new research from Sweden. 61% of Americans say that they gained weight during the Pandemic. New research suggests that maintaining 3 feet of distance is enough for students in classrooms when mask mandates are in place, rather than 6 feet of distance. Galleri is a new blood test that has the ability to detect 50 types of cancer through a single blood draw. THC from marijuana can linger in breast milk for as long as 6 weeks, according to new research. The FDA has just authorized a rapid at-home COVID-19 test without a prescription. In an effort to reduce or manage our carbon footprints, shampoo bottles will soon feature labels that show carbon content. A Baltimore, MD plant run by Emergent BioSolutions was making two different coronavirus vaccines when its workers mixed up the ingredients, ruining 15 million doses of Johnson & Johnson single-shot vaccine, according to the NY Times. Facebook is letting anti-vaxxers to scare women from getting COVID-19 vaccines.
 
 
Animal News:
 
 
This could be a problem, sickly black bears in the Sierra Nevada are acting friendlier and fearless around humans. The bears have been found to have a mysterious disease. A necropsy confirmed that it, along with 2 previous bears, had suffered from encephalitis. A bright spot from COVID-19 has meant quieter oceans, healthier whales, and unhappy whale hunters. In Ottawa, Canada a hero dog, Clover, blocked the road with traffic and summoned help from passing drivers for her owner Haley Moore’s sudden seizure. A Virginia police officer was shot during attempt to catch an escaped cow. A father has been accused of bringing, dropping child in San Diego Zoo’s elephant habitat. One of the elephants appeared ready to charge. Animal rights groups criticize new Chinese hotel with polar bear enclosure. A Columbus, Ohio zookeeper was injured in a cheetah attack at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium. A two-story barn at Roer’s Zoofari in Virginia caught fire and killed two giraffes. The FDA is continuing an investigation into dog heart damage linked to diet, possibly associated with grain-free pet foods. Nine great apes at the San Diego Zoo have received their Covid vaccinations. Scientists have discovered a giant, luminous deep-sea shark, one of three species, a kitefin shark, that glow in the dark. It is now the largest known luminous underwater creature. Brandy, a brown tabby cat, was reunited with its owner, who had adopted her as a 2-month-old kitten in 2005 and hadn’t seen her since. Tiny fossils in Newfoundland, Canada may be evidence of the oldest cephalopod on record, perhaps 500-million-years-old. Here’s an odd one…Scientists are brainstorming over why so many sea creatures swim in a strange circular pattern. One thought is that it calibrates the animals’ magnetic biosensors, in much the same way that manmade submarines circle. Oh no, not again! Billions of periodical cicadas, known as Brood X, will emerge across the eastern US in 2021. Most predators have been stymied by the cicadas’ 17-year life spans, but the insects are still vulnerable to
‘zombie fungus’. It took 25 years for scientists to crack a mystery surrounding a neurodegenerative disease killing bald eagles and other lake animals in the US. A sprawling 5,000-year-old cemetery and fortress has been discovered in Poland. Every few years, millions of by-the-wind sailor jellyfish wash up on beaches and die. Scientists blame ‘the blob’ on this phenomenon. A dead “river monster” from the Amazon (like that guy hunts on that show River Monsters hunts and I watch occasionally) was discovered in, gulp, Florida! This is leading officials to be concerned that the fish might become another invasive species here. Okay, this one is weird too…apparently genes of 500-million-year-old sea monster live inside us. Primeval sea creatures share genes with humans. A juvenile humpback whale has washed up on a beach in the UK after first being spotted dead weeks ago. Japan’s famous cherry blossoms are seeing their earliest bloom in 1,200 years, as the climate warms. Fireflies don’t respond well to light pollution.
 
 
Entertainment News:
 
Ariana Grande is joining The Voice as a coach.Seth Rogen has clarified his comments on Emma Watson “storming off the set”. Demi Lovato, as CNN reports, said, “I am too gay to marry a man right now.” Disney+ has unveiled the Obi-Wan Kenobi cast. I can’t wait!  Former Bachelor star, Ben Higgins, is discussing Chris Harrison. Woody Allen has once again denied sexual abuse allegation in rare interview. Lady Gaga is gushing about her 35th birthday gift from boyfriend. Jason Derulo and his girlfriend Jena Frumes are expecting their first child. Reese Witherspoon has taken to Instagram to celebrate her “sweet hubby” of 10 years. Hilary Duff has welcomed her third child, also on Instagram. After a week of controversy, Sharon Osbourne is out of The Talk cast. Bindi Irwin and her husband Chandler Powell have welcomed their first child. As the Kardashians bring their reality show to a close this season, Kim Kardashian appears to be bringing her marriage to Kanye West also to a close. Their marital problems are actually being featured on the same reality show, Keeping Up With The Kardashians. I watched the Tina Turner tribute story and it was awesome. I still don’t understand why or how King Kong and Godzilla are fighting. I seem to remember King Kong being much smaller and without much of a friendship with mankind, except one woman. Kirsten Dunst is pregnant with baby No.2. Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star Jen Shah has been arrested on 3/30 and charged with a telemarketing scheme, including charges of wire fraud and money laundering. If convicted, Shah and her assistant each face up to 50 years in prison. TikTok star Rochelle Hager is dead at 31, after freak driving accident. Kendall Jenner’s security has been increased after a man was arrested for trespassing. Fran Drescher is very happy for The Nanny coming to HBO Max. Paul Simon has joined a growing list of prominent musicians cashing in, by selling his song catalog. Manifest starts its new season tonight.
 
Technology & Space News:
 
 
A piece of the Wright Brother’s first plane is now on Mars. A rare daytime fireball meteor created a massive sonic boom over the UK. Speaking of the UK, the Biden administration is threatening tariffs on UK goods in “tech tax” disagreement. In retaliation for UK tax on tech firms, the US has warned that it could put tariffs of up to 25% on a host of UK exports. This could affect ceramics, make-up, overcoats, game consoles, and furniture. Interestingly, Biden Administration is pressing ahead with the action, which was initiated by President Trump, despite warnings from the UK. Such actions have proceeded against similar taxes in India, Austria, and Spain. However, the US has suspended tariffs on single malt Scotch whiskey.  No need to get unreasonable, lol! Facebook has agreed to pay France EU 106 million in back taxes. Now that Spring has sprung in the Northern Hemisphere and Autumn has fallen in the Southern Hemisphere), last weekend (3/26) featured March’s full moon, a supermoon (20% larger than normal), and referred to as the ‘Worm Moon’. The Old Farmer’s Almanac assigns nicknames to each of the year’s full moons, drawing from Native American tradition. This is usually when the ground begins warming up and earthworms begin appearing. TSMC will invest $100 billion to increase semiconductor output. Micron and Western Digital are looking at possible deals for Japanese chip maker Kioxia, a deal which could be worth as much as $30 billion. Google’s ad changes, which include blocking of third-party cookies, will prompt big brands to revamp their data strategies.
 
US News:
 
President Biden has just unveiled his sweeping $2 trillion infrastructure plan. It’s kind of Biden’s version of FDR’s New Deal plan to get us out of the Great Depression.  To pay for shoring up America’s disintegrating infrastructure, the White House plans to take back some of the tax cuts that Republicans gave corporations and the rich 4 years ago. The corporate tax rate may move from 21% to 28%. Within the plan is electrical vehicle support to clean water. Without me saying whether one policy was better than the other, President Biden’s reversal of President Trump’s border ban and allowing some 4,100 immigrant children to enter the US, has led to their confinement in huge refugee facilities, which are 800% over capacity. The parents are not allowed to enter, and they assume that the children will eventually be put in foster facilities or linked with current US resident relatives. As word spreads, there are likely to be more immigrant families taking advantage of this, which will only exacerbate the overcrowding and stalled processing. It must be a very difficult decision for a foreign parent to give up their child over a border to a new country, with the hopes of a better life for the child, potentially never to see them again. There is a livestream of the Derek Chauvin trial, the accused Minneapolis ex-policeman in the George Floyd death, in its 4th day. Four people, including a child, were killed in a California shooting. Sarah Palin is urging mask use by Americans, after revealing COVID-19 diagnosis. The Virginia Supreme Court has ruled that Charlottesville can remove Confederate statues.
 
 
Bankruptcy:
 
 
In 2020, restaurant and food service industry sales fell by $240 billion, according to the National Restaurant Association’s State of the Industry 2021 report.  
 
 
International News:
 
 
The Pentagon and military officials around the world are becoming more alarmed, as North Korean leader continues to make stronger public threats, after firing of 3 ballistic missiles into the ocean, and new satellite imagery from US military shows a nuclear power facility that has clearly been converted to make nuclear missiles and bombs. All of this coincided with joint Naval exercises by South Korea and the US. The sabre-rattling continues. Veteran Hong Kong democracy leaders have been convicted over protests in a landmark case. Dozens of civilians were killed and 35,000 others displaced after Islamist rebels seized the city of Palma in Mozambique. Former President of Madagascar, Didier Ratsiraka died at the age of 84. The cargo ship Ever Given has final been freed, after it ran aground, blocking the Suez Canal for six days and resulting in a traffic jam of more than 350 vessels.
 
  
Florida:
 
 
The Palm Beach International Boat Show was just held 3/25-3/28 on Flagler Drive. I actually attended.  However, SunFest has been cancelled again. But, the Honda Classic at PGA National, in Palm Beach Gardens, FL, was just held on 3/15-3/21. Miami Beach officials declared a State of Emergency after large crowds materialized on the beaches last week to celebrate Spring Break. Over 1,000 people were arrested.
 
 
Jokes and Such:
 
Okay, I decided that since you readers are only going to give me dirty jokes that would just get me in trouble, in the context of distanced learning and your kids likely at home on the computer, I would provide you some CLEAN jokes that you can share with them. That’s just how I am J
 
31. Why were they called the “dark ages?”
Because there were a lot of knights.
32. What gets wetter the more it dries?
A towel.
33. Why aren’t koalas considered bears?
They don’t have the right koala-fications.
34. You: What cartoon mouse walks on two feet?
Them: Mickey Mouse
You: What duck walks on two feet?
Them: Donald Duck
You: No, all ducks do!
35. Want to hear a joke about a roof?
The first one’s on the house.
36. What’s a pirate’s favorite letter?
You probably think it’s “R” but it be the “C”.
37. How much teddy bears never want to eat anything?
Because they’re always stuffed.
38. Did you hear about the cheese factory that exploded in France?
There was nothing left but de Brie.
39. Where should you go in the room if you’re feeling cold?
The corner—they’re usually 90 degrees.
40. I can never take my dog to the park because the ducks keep trying to bite him.
I guess that’s what I get for buying a pure bread dog.
 
I promise that they will continue to be corny or cornier, unless you give me some good quasi-clean jokes for adults…

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