Accounts – Learn Racquetball Fri, 16 Jul 2021 06:41:41 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Accounts – Learn Racquetball 32 32 Third Stimulus Check Covid Bill: When Will We Get $ 1,400 Checks? Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:58:13 +0000

Minutes after President Biden signed the COVID-19 relief plan, the White House took stock of the start of the third round of stimulus checks.

WASHINGTON – After more than two months of anxious wait for millions of Americans, President Joe Biden enacted a $ 1.9 trillion COVID relief plan that includes $ 1,400 direct payment stimulus checks.

Congress gave final approval to the “American rescue plan” Wednesday and he then went to Biden for his signing.

Biden had originally planned to sign the bill on Friday afternoon, but White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain tweeted Thursday that the bill had arrived faster than expected, so they decided to sign it. a day earlier.

Minutes after Biden enacted the bill, the White House provided an important schedule update for the start of the third round of stimulus checks.

When will the third stimulus check be sent?

The Democrats’ goal was to pass the bill by Sunday, March 14. This is when Supplemental Unemployment Assistance and other pandemic assistance expires.

With Biden signing the plan on Thursday, Democrats have achieved that goal.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki announced shortly after Biden signed the bill that the IRS and the Treasury Department were working hard to secure the payments. She said some people will see direct deposits hit their bank accounts as early as this weekend.

“This is of course only the first wave, but some people in the country will start to see these direct deposits into their bank accounts this weekend and payments to eligible Americans will continue over the next few weeks,” Psaki explained. .

The IRS said on Friday that payments were already being processed and agreed that direct deposits would start arriving this weekend.

During the first round of stimulus checks in April 2020, it took about two weeks for the federal government to start distributing the money. It took about a week for the second round of checks, worth $ 600, in early January, in part because the infrastructure for the first stimulus was in place.

One factor that could complicate matters is that it’s tax season too. The IRS will try to send out stimulus checks while processing incoming tax returns and calculating refunds.

Who gets $ 1,400 stimulus checks?

The House and Senate versions of the bill agreed that individual filers who earn up to $ 75,000 per year will receive $ 1,400. Couples who jointly deposit up to $ 150,000 will receive $ 2,800. There will also be $ 1,400 added for each dependent in the household.

Where they differed was how quickly the stimulus money would gradually be reduced to zero. The original House bill passed on February 27 called for the elimination to be complete at $ 100,000 for individuals and $ 200,000 for couples. But the Senate version passed on March 6 lowered it to $ 80,000 and $ 160,000, respectively. This version of the Senate is what the House passed on Wednesday.

About 8 million fewer households will receive a check under the Senate bill than what the House passed, according to an analysis by the Center for Tax Policy.

CALCULATOR: Here is an Omni Calculator tool this can help you determine how much you might receive

RELATED: Third Stimulus Check Update: House Gives Final Approval to COVID Bill with Payments of $ 1,400

Why is the stimulus $ 1,400 and not $ 2,000?

Biden’s plan called for checks of $ 1,400 for most Americans, which, in addition to the $ 600 provided in the latest COVID-19 bill, would bring the total to the $ 2,000 requested by Biden.

But Biden initially didn’t make that differentiation. Biden said on January 4 during a campaign For Democrats Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock ahead of the second round of Georgian Senate elections, “Their election will end Washington’s blocking of this $ 2,000 stimulus check. This money will come out immediately.”

RELATED: CHECK OUT: Most of the COVID Relief Bill is Aimed at Things Related to COVID

RELATED: Biden Won’t Put His Name On Stimulus Checks, White House Says

What else in the COVID relief bill?

Expanded federal unemployment benefits would be extended until September 6 to $ 300 per week. This is in addition to what beneficiaries receive through their state unemployment insurance program. The first $ 10,200 of unemployment benefits would be tax-free for households with incomes below $ 150,000.

In addition, the measures provide for a 100% subsidy of COBRA’s health insurance premiums to ensure that laid-off workers can continue to benefit from their employer’s health plans free of charge until the end of September.

The legislation would send $ 350 billion to state and local governments and tribal governments for costs incurred through the end of 2024. The bill also requires small states to receive at least the amount they received under. virus legislation passed by Congress last March.

Many communities have hit their tax bases during the pandemic, but the impact varies from state to state and city to city. Critics say the funding is not properly targeted and is far more than needed with billions of dollars allocated last spring to states and communities still unspent.

The bill provides approximately $ 130 billion in additional assistance to schools for kindergarten to grade 12 students. The money would be used to reduce class sizes and modify classrooms to improve social distancing, install ventilation systems and purchase personal protective equipment. The money could also be used to increase the hiring of nurses and counselors and to offer summer courses.

Spending for colleges and universities would be increased by around $ 40 billion, with the money being used to cover an institution’s pandemic-related expenses and provide emergency assistance to students to cover expenses such as food , housing and computer equipment.

A new program for restaurants and bars affected by the pandemic would receive $ 25 billion. Grants provide up to $ 10 million per business with a limit of $ 5 million per physical location. Grants can be used to cover salaries, rent, utilities, and other operational expenses.

The bill also provides $ 7.25 billion for the paycheck protection program, a tiny fraction of what was allocated in previous legislation. The bill also allows more nonprofits to apply for loans designed to help borrowers meet their salaries and operating costs and which can potentially be forgiven.

The bill provides $ 46 billion to expand federal, state and local testing for COVID-19 and to improve contract tracing capabilities with new investments to expand lab capacity and set up mobile testing units . It also contains approximately $ 14 billion to accelerate the distribution and administration of COVID-19 vaccines across the country.

Parts of the legislation advance long-standing Democratic priorities, such as increasing coverage under the Obama-era Affordable Care Act. Financial assistance for ACA premiums would become considerably more generous and more strong middle-class households would qualify. While the softened grants only last until the end of 2022, they will lower the cost of coverage and are expected to increase the number of people enrolled.

The measure also puts more money ahead of a dozen states, mostly in the South, which have yet to embrace the expansion of Medicaid available under the ACA to cover more low-income adults. . It’s unclear whether such a sweetener would be enough to begin to weaken long-standing Republican opposition to the expansion of Medicaid.

Under current law, most taxpayers can reduce their federal income tax bill by up to $ 2,000 per child. In a significant change, the bill would increase the tax break to $ 3,000 for each child aged 6 to 17 and to $ 3,600 for each child under the age of 6.

The legislation also provides for payments to be made monthly instead of a lump sum. If the Secretary of the Treasury determines that this is not possible, payments should be made as frequently as possible.

Families would get all the credit, no matter how little they earn in a year, which has led to criticism that the changes have a chilling effect on work. Add in the $ 1,400 checks and other elements of the proposal, and the legislation would more than halve the number of children living in poverty, according to Columbia University’s Center on Poverty and Social Policy.

The bill also significantly expands the earned income tax credit for 2021 by making it accessible to people without children. The credit for low and moderate income adults would be worth $ 543 to $ 1,502, depending on income and deposit status.

The bill provides about $ 30 billion to help low-income households and the unemployed pay rent and utilities, and to help the homeless with vouchers and other aids. States and tribes would receive an additional $ 10 billion for homeowners struggling to pay off their mortgages due to the pandemic.

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Lego Art Iron Man: Take Time For Yourself Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:58:07 +0000

Chris Parker / CNET

One thing I learned during this pandemic is that you can never have too many activities to keep busy while being locked away at home. For me that means streaming TV shows from the late 90s and early 2000s, playing video games, learning to play the ukulele, building ukuleles, doing cross stitch and more.

One thing i do not have I did a lot of things in my 40s, that’s building Lego sets, which is weird, because I used to do it pretty regularly before. Guess I may have slowed down since running out of shelf space to display them all. Today, Lego launched a new line of building sets, aimed specifically at stressed adults, called Lego Art, designed to be hung on the wall instead.

The Lego Art series was released earlier this month, and features designs inspired by Marvel’s Star Wars, Andy Warhol, The Beatles and Iron Man. Lego was kind enough to send me one of Iron Man’s sets so that I could share the building experience with you.

“Listen, build, relax”



Each Lego Art set comes with instructions for building three or four different models, but not at the same time. So you can choose to build your Beatle armor or your favorite version of Iron Man, but you’ll have to take it apart to build another one (or buy multiple sets). If you invest in three Iron Man or Star Wars sets, however, Lego offers free downloadable instructions for combining them into a single Ultimate Build. Darth Vader’s jumbo build looks pretty rad.

Each set also comes with a QR code so you can access a “unique soundtrack” that you can listen to as you build. While working on the design of Iron Man Mark III, I enjoyed what was essentially a 90-minute Marvel Comics podcast, complete with interviews from comic book experts, Marvel staff, and designers. of Lego who created the set.

As for the construction of the set, I have to say that I probably would have been more relaxed if I hadn’t tried to record the entire process with three different cameras from multiple angles. I listened to the soundtrack while doing it, and it was quite engaging. It was especially interesting to learn that the Lego Art sets were originally created using square pieces, but the image ended up looking too pixelated. The circular pieces helped give the patterns a softer look and let the black background shine through.

The construction of the whole also took time. It includes a total of 3,167 pieces, and while you don’t use all of them for every design, the 48 by 48 stud grid made up a total of 2,304 small round pieces that needed to be placed just in the right place. My fingers were a little sore at the end, but it’s the pain I’m willing to take to bring you that kind of content.


Chris Parker / CNET

One of these days, when I have some spare time, I’m probably going to take the set apart so that I can build a different design. Then I’ll see how relaxing the experience can be. I don’t think I’ll buy two more sets to complete the triptych, but I might see some splurge on one of the Warhol sets. A magenta Marylin Monroe could really tie my living room together.

Lego Art Iron Man is exclusive to retailers and Lego, and is available now. The other three sets will be available on September 1.



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West Side Rag “Sean Hannity Says Upper West Side Homeless Hotels Part of” New York Nightmare “ Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:58:05 +0000

Posted on July 30, 2020 at 4:21 p.m. by West Sider

The Upper West Side has always been a bogeyman for Tories who have laughed at the liberal politics of residents here for decades (though many prominent right-wingers also choose to live here! Yes, even Rush Limbaugh once lived on UWS).

On Wednesday night, Fox News commentator and close personal friend of President Sean Hannity caught the attention of his more than 4 million viewers. on the Upper West Side. In particular, Hannity highlighted the situation at the hotel Lucerne on 79th Street where the city has placed 283 homeless men.

(Throughout the segment, Hannity continually spoke of drug addicts in the “glamorous” neighborhood of the Upper East Side – although Lucerne is in the Upper West.)

“It got so bad that a four-star hotel was turned into a homeless shelter for drug addicts,” Hannity said. It was part of a theme pushed by the president and his allies that cities run by Democrats are falling into chaos.

A Fox reporter looked at the homeless situation and “what he found should shock conscience,” Hannity said. The reporter interviewed local residents, who had mixed feelings about the shelter. Some said they were nervous about security and wished they had been consulted, while one said: “I think if it’s very well coordinated and supervised it can work” .

The journalist also walked around the city center talking about people who used heroin there. At times the segment seemed to confuse the situation in The Lucerne with that in the city center, highlighting “drug addicts taking heroin” – something that the post office said is happening in the city center.

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Viewpoints: Advantages, Disadvantages of the COVID Relief Compromise; More lessons on unfair mask mandates Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:58:03 +0000

The editorial pages focus on these topics related to the pandemic and others.

The Washington Post: Covid-19 Bill Shows Washington Can Still Work, From Time to Time

As the nation wraps up a gloomy 2020, there have been some signs that its political system may still work. The first was an orderly, perhaps the cleanest and safest presidential election ever, which resisted President Trump’s concerted attempts to overturn the result. Second, the Covid-19 relief compromise bill that lawmakers rushed to pass on Monday, after months of legislative deadlock. Yes, it is imperfect. But it is nonetheless an indication that lawmakers are still able to shake hands on big laws when national prosperity is at stake. (12/21)

The Wall Street Journal: Political relief from Covid

Congressional leaders reached agreement on a $ 900 billion Covid-19 relief bill on Sunday night, but please don’t call this economic stimulus. With a few exceptions, the main relief here is for politicians who want to take credit for distributing more money to voters. The best provision of the bill is the limit on potential abuse by Treasury Biden and the Federal Reserve. Credit here to Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey, who has stood firm to limit the Fed’s room for maneuver without a new act of Congress. Democrats are claiming victory, but it’s a face-saving way. (12/20)

Los Angeles Times: Stimulation Controls: Too Little For Some, Too Much For Many

Almost a fifth of the $ 908 billion proposed in the long-awaited Congressional coronavirus relief bill will be sent directly to U.S. taxpayers in the form of “economic impact payments” – checks for up to 600 $ per person. The $ 166 billion in these payments is the second item in the bill, behind the $ 325 billion in loans to help struggling small businesses. And yet, in the opinion of some critics, the amount is far from sufficient. “$ 600 is not ‘a lot’ for families,” author Don Winslow said in a tweet that characterized the pushback, “and… the people who said it was“ a lot ”are detached from the pain of millions of Americans. It will not help them in any real or meaningful way. (12/22)

The New York Times: Stimulus deal is pretty good, so far

The $ 900 billion pandemic aid package that emerged Sunday from months of intermittent negotiations between House Democrats and Senate Republicans is a necessary measure that will alleviate the suffering of millions of Americans. It will help the unemployed to feed their families and avoid evictions. This will help small businesses avoid bankruptcy. This will help keep trains and buses running in cities across the country. Congress should have acted months ago, and the delay has caused a lot of unnecessary pain. Even now, Congress is not doing enough to meet the full extent of need. But the relevant question is whether this deal will help – and the clear answer is yes. (12/20)

CNN: Congressional pandemic relief deal saves time, prepares for fierce battles ahead

Finally. The $ 900 billion pandemic relief deal that Congress announced on Sunday offers rare good news during the brutal year-long holiday season and short-term relief for laid-off workers and businesses closed hammered by the double health and economic crisis. The most optimistic interpretation of the deal is that despite a tortured process, a deeply divided Capitol Hill eventually sailed down the path of consensus, pushed by a core of more moderate bipartisan senators who catalyzed compromise in a way. secular. (Stephen Collinson, 12/21/21)

The Hill: Unfair mask mandates distract from real pandemic priorities

In his presidential campaign, Joe Biden called for a national mask mandate to fight the spread of the coronavirus. Biden has since reneged on his call, acknowledging that the president has no real constitutional power to implement a nationwide health order; he can only require masks on federal property. (Ben Bayer, 12/21/21)

Fox News: If Biden continues with open border policy, it will pose serious public health risk during pandemic

On the campaign trail, Joe Biden promised to be President Trump’s antithesis on border and immigration issues. Basically, Biden – whose victory was declared by the Electoral College on Monday – has pledged to do the opposite of everything Trump has done regarding illegal immigration. So let’s see what that would actually look like, assuming Trump’s continued efforts to overthrow former Vice President Biden’s election as president are unsuccessful. Spoiler alert: it would be like spraying a fire with gasoline. Even in normal times, there is a lot to dislike about open border policies. But amid the coronavirus pandemic, opening borders presents another problem: a catastrophic public health risk from the spread of the deadly COVID-19 disease. (James Carafano, 12/21/21)

The Washington Post: Even by Florida standards, Governor Ron DeSantis is a Covid-19 disaster

Earlier this month, as Florida neared its 20,000th death from covid-19, a little good humor appeared in the inboxes of 160 state lawmakers: an invitation (plus one!) No mask or social distancing required; any devotion to science or reality could be checked at the door. The event narrowly avoided super-spreader status: the president of the state Senate regretted his absence just hours before the evening when a coronavirus test came back positive. Welcome to Florida, the sun-drenched US state of disbelief. Since the childhood of the pandemic, DeSantis has conveniently, if not diabolically, eliminated covid-19 from public life here. (Lizette Alvarez, 12/21/1)

The Wall Street Journal: New York’s worst slum lord

Mayor Bill de Blasio and the New York City Housing Authority (Nycha) are the Big Apple’s worst owners, according to a watchlist released last week by the city’s public counsel. A new report from the New York City Department of Investigation offers supporting evidence. Nycha is supposed to clean lead paint in apartments where young children live, and an Environmental Protection Agency-certified supervisor is supposed to make sure the job is done right. Instead, Nycha officials resorted to fraud and forgery, the Investigations Department found. The investigation found that “at least since 2013, none of NYCHA’s lead reduction work has ever been supervised by an EPA-certified senior supervisor,” the department said in a press release. Instead, “the head of the main unit pressured employees to falsely sign documents indicating that this work was being supervised.” (12/21)

This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of coverage of health policies by major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.

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As Joe Biden is inaugurated, a person in uniform kneels silently at the grave of his son Beau Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:58:03 +0000

WILMINGTON, Del. – While Joe Biden delivered his inaugural speech On Wednesday afternoon, a lone person in a blue uniform knelt at the grave of Biden’s son Beau in St. Joseph’s at Brandywine Church in Greenville, Delaware.

The person kept his head bowed before and after the speech and joined his hands. The person didn’t say anything. No one else was in the cemetery on a cold, windy afternoon except for a few exterior maintenance workers.

The identity of the person was not known. A reporter from the News Journal did not approach by respect. The person remained at the grave after Biden finished speaking.

As Joe Biden delivered his inaugural address on Wednesday afternoon, a lone man in uniform knelt at the grave of Biden’s son Beau Biden at St. Joseph on The Brandywine Church in Greenville.

Beau Biden, the former Delaware attorney general and member of the Delaware National Guard, died of cancer in 2015 at the age of 46.

Opening day: Why I took the photo at Beau Biden’s grave that goes viral

Biden said his son should have run for president in his place, and cited his grief over his son’s death as the main reason he did not run for president in 2016.

Read the touching testimony of journalist Patricia Talorico explaining why she took the picture.

This article originally appeared in the Delaware News Journal: As Joe Biden opens, a person in uniform kneels at Beau Biden’s grave

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Former Walmart Exec startup uses AI to fight spoiled product deliveries Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:58:01 +0000

As Supply Chain Manager, Syed Aman spent several years making sure products got to Walmart

stores, it was not rotten. Today, as CEO and co-founder of Truck transport, he’s using what he’s learned to give other supermarkets the same confidence, because it’s not just a few bad apples that messes everyone up.

“Products spend half their life in the supply chain and more than $ 15 billion is wasted or rejected in transit each year,” Aman said. “On average, 14% of product shipments are rejected. “

The persistent Covid-19 pandemic has only exacerbated the problem of supply chain disruptions and stringent packaging requirements by major retailers such as Walmart and Target

adding to the complexity of getting fruits and vegetables from the farm to produce shelves still fresh, Aman said.

Such shipments were already facing severe challenges due to what Aman described as “primarily manual methods of planning and routing, the lack of visibility and communication between the various players in this value chain, and cold chain standards are not met during supply chain days. “

The pandemic has also resulted in increased demand for food in general and commodities in particular. This created a ripple effect of load density exceeding the availability of trucks and drivers, further delaying deliveries.

That’s why Aman, a Walmart alumnus, and another man who owned a goods and trucking business co-founded Hwy Haul, based in Santa Clara, California. The company’s digital freight platform uses a combination of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and what Aman calls “optimization algorithms” to match loads with carriers in the United States and in Canada. Hwy Haul’s platform also provides real-time freight tracking with “smart” alerts.

The result, especially during the pandemic, said Aman, “Hwy Haul matched 100% of loads with reliable carriers and demonstrated impressive on-time deliveries amid the chaos.”

Some valuable lessons learned during his tenure at Walmart were important contributions to the development of Hwy Haul’s platform, which includes what Aman calls “learning the quirks and nuances” of shipping d ‘a fresh product.

But the big box experience has also helped in understanding how to run a large-scale business.

“As a behemoth (Walmart), we have been challenged to precisely design and build technology products at scale, taking into account the various players (users) involved,” Aman said. “At Hwy Haul, we’ve built our technology stack with maximum scalability in mind. We are building an enterprise level ecosystem instead of a one-time solution like some companies do. “

A satisfied customer of Hwy Haul is Ganesh Rajaraman, senior vice president at a multinational food supplier. Olam Americas, Inc. The company has been using the Hwy Haul Expressway for nearly five months which began last May.

Rajaraman says even though the cost savings have been minimal, positive compensation is improvement in efficiency

“The time spent on reservations, follow-ups, etc., has certainly been significantly reduced on our end,” Rajaraman said. “We receive automatic updates at every stage of the trips, which takes away our efforts to find those milestones. It was our first experience in digital trucking, and we think the app is very easy to use and access to information has become much easier with regards to delivery and schedules.

Besides Olam Americas, Hwy Haul is expanding its customer base by having delivered loads to many top chains including Costco, HEB, Kroger.

, Safeway, Hello Fresh and Aman’s alma mater, Walmart.

Big customers are nice, Aman said, but he’s not picky in remarking, “No customer is too small for us, and neither are they too big. “

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Montana candidates in the news Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:57:58 +0000

As polls continue to show Senator Steve Daines’ path to re-election is anything but easy, the Republican incumbent welcomes any news likely to further strengthen his profile. Several of these articles were delivered last week, including that of Democratic Governor of California Gavin Newsom approval of a draft law on forest management co-drafted by Daines and an ad that Daines had obtained over $ 300,000 in federal funds for rural Montana fire department. The biggest lift, however, came in the form of Vice President Mike Pence, who appeared alongside Daines and praised his senatorial career at a rally in Belgrade that left local health officials more than a little worried.

Pence also took the opportunity to shoot Daines’ Democratic challenger, Governor Steve Bullock, who has had a busy week. announces statewide protocols for schools facing coronavirus outbreaks. Bullock took his turn this weekend, sending a volley in the direction of Daines above the incumbent. response to the death of United States Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Bullock also made a personal visit to County Gallatin, participating in a panel discussion focused on a very specific need among Montana veterans. And the two candidates made their case Friday before a group whose work has become intensely politicized this cycle.

Bullock’s Lt. Gov. and future Democratic successor Mike Cooney kicked off his week with a Sunday address in Butte focusing on education and the rapid improvements he hopes to bring to health care. The appearance followed a similar event to Polson the day before Cooney exchanged a few dry words with a facial mask vocal critic. Cooney, who has raised a considerable amount of campaign money last month, then stopped in Great Falls to announce several proposals for the benefit of first responders and unionized workers.

Organized labor also landed on the campaign plaque for Republican governor Greg Gianforte, with running mate Kristen Juras abruptly reconsider his statement suggesting that Gianforte would not oppose a bill on the state’s right to work. The statement came during Juras’ foray along the Hi-Line, where she sat down with newspapers to an exciting conversation about agriculture, resource development and technology skillfully captured by Eric Gill of the Sidney Herald. Gianforte himself had recently passed through the region for hear Toole County community leaders talk about their creative approach to the coronavirus crisis.

latest stories

Journalist’s notebook: Oil town

A group of young professionals from Sidney, MT hosted a conference to showcase their city to their peers across the state. The weather forecast had other plans.

There was little civility in the Attorney General race on Sunday as Republican Austin Knudsen and Democrat Raph Graybill clashed in MTN News’ latest virtual debate. Between discussions on the Affordable Care Act and the fight against the drug epidemic in Montana, the two exchanged increasingly bitter criticisms of each other’s eligibility for the post.

One final note on the Pence rally that has dominated the headlines in recent weeks: With their Congressional agendas demanding a quick comeback after the rally in Washington, DC, Daines and Gianforte had a rare turn. Gianforte spoke to Peter Christian of KGVO about his experience on Air Force Two and who he spoke with by phone during the flight.

Check out the full archive of media coverage of Montana candidates statewide – along with fundraising numbers, a voting FAQ, and candidate responses to primary questionnaires – on MTFP Election Guide 2020.

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Average FICO scores are increasing across the board, says Ellie Mae Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:57:54 +0000

Ellie Mae‘s Insight Origin Report for June detailed the drop in mortgage rates for the sixth consecutive month and noted some interesting trends in closing rates and FICO scores.

According to the report, the 30-year average rate fell from 3.43% in May to 3.4% in June.

“Interest rates have fallen for the sixth month in a row and we are seeing a rebound in the buying market which now accounts for 42% of all loans closed, a 7% increase from May,” said Jonathan Corr, President and CEO of Ellie Mae.

During the month, the 30-year conventional loan rate fell to 3.42%, from 3.4% in May. The VA loan rate fell to 3.2% from 3.24% and the 30-year rate on FHA loans stood at 3.41%, from 3.45% the previous month.

Notably, the closing rates for all loans fell to 73.4% in June, from 76% in May, and the average closing time rose to 47 days in June, from 45 days in May.

Ellie Mae says closing rates on refinances fell to 73.2% in June from 75.9% in May, and closing rates on purchase loans fell 76.4% in May to 74.2% in June.

“Homebuyers are taking advantage of these historically low rates to buy and refinance, but it appears lenders are looking for borrowers with better credit for all mortgage products as FICO scores have continued to rise across the board since March. “said Corr.

According to Ellie Mae, average FICO scores on all closed loans rose to 751 in June, from 750 in May, while FICO scores increased month-over-month for conventional loan purchases and refinances, FHA and VA.

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Can Best Buy survive by matching Amazon’s prices? Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:57:53 +0000

Bis Buy (NYSE: BBY ) has announced that it will match the prices of its main online competitor, (NASDAQ: AMZN ) during this holiday season. The strategy appears to be working, but Best Buy has yet to work out all the details. According to The Wall Street Journal , the price comparison program may exclude some products. Depending on the nature of these products, this decision could hamper the company’s efforts.

For high-priced items, like Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL ) and Sony 60-inch laptops (NYSE: END ), Best Buy may not care that consumers go elsewhere to save a few bucks. For smaller items, however, it could help Best Buy maintain sales it would have lost to competitor dot-com.

Browsing through Best Buy’s DVD selection, shoppers will generally find that the first week sales (which are applied when a movie or TV series is released for the first time) are at or above Amazon’s. . After initial sales end, Amazon’s prices are usually lower than Best Buy’s.

While Amazon shoppers can purchase the first season of Happy Endings for $ 11.21 , Best buy sells it for $ 16.99 . Glee: The Complete Third Season Goes For $ 37.20 on Amazon; Best Buy Fee $ 39.99 .

Older items are even more expensive at Best Buy. Retailer invoices $ 34.99 for Rizzoli & Isles: The Complete First Season. On Amazon, it is sold for $ 25.00 .

Some of these discounts are due to the large network of retailers who sell their products through Amazon. Still, Best Buy still has to compete. The program will be less likely to be successful if Best Buy chooses to only match listings for products that are actually shipped and sold by Amazon. It doesn’t matter whether consumers choose Amazon or an Amazon merchant. Either way, Best Buy lost a potential sale.

While the program is fast (consumers shouldn’t have to wait long for a Best Buy employee to verify the validity of an Amazon price) and efficient (most products on Amazon should apply, regardless of the seller ), Best Buy might be able to stop showrooming without scare customers .

This program could go even further and encourage positive showrooming behavior by encouraging consumers to compare prices and buy items on the spot. The goal here is to prevent shoppers from leaving the store and buying elsewhere. But it could also encourage people to visit Best Buy more often because they know they can always get the best price available.

Follow me @LouisBedigianBZ

(c) 2012 Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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The problem with $ 20,000 Bitcoin Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:57:52 +0000

Bitcoin hit an all-time high today at $ 20,000 and “hodlers” rejoiced. However, this year’s rally leaves constant questions about Tether’s issuance, the stablecoin (USDT) which apparently has unlimited capacity to print money. The flow of Tether into Bitcoin is generally correlated with rising prices, especially over the past year – every time Bitcoin appears to be falling, a load of new Tethers is created (often over $ 50 million at a time. ) and buy BTC, taking the price of BTC back up. You can see Tether’s creation posted in real time on twitter here and via CoinMarketCap:

This staggering increase of over $ 4 billion in new Tethers implies that someone has paid Tether $ 4 billion to buy Bitcoin in the past three months alone. Tether has a little checkered pattern with its policy of not posting any type of audit or showing proof of funds. It’s unclear whether or not they receive $ 4 billion in cash, but it raises questions, especially when Tether is created on weekends and other times when other markets don’t normally trade.

You can see the Bitcoin market cap accordingly over this period:

Some academics also researched this and find a correlation between the issuance of Tether and the price and corresponding market cap of Bitcoin.

So if you are a Bitcoin believer, just follow the Tether printer and watch the print. But if they stop printing, beware of the downsides if there isn’t that regular USDT injection. We may see more of them on January 21 when the New York Attorney General Deadline to get information from them.

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