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With so much to follow in Washington right now – and so much happening all across the country – I want to make sure the investigations into Russian
interference in the 2016 election don’t get lost in the shuffle. Special counsel Robert Mueller has impaneled a grand jury, signaling that the investigations
are reaching a critical moment, and new information continues to surface.
We’ve seen findings that Russians purchased political ads on Facebook, Google and other online platforms to spread disinformation and stoke fear. And
internal reviews of that spending indicate the Russians used sophisticated targeting to sow discord. In addition to the propaganda, we also know of at
least 21 states where Russians tried to hack into election systems, a story which hasn’t gotten the thorough attention it deserves.
I’ve talked about the Russia investigations with folks in Maine and all across the country – including some who wonder what the point of all this is. People
understandably want to put the 2016 elections behind them and leave this in the past – but, unfortunately, Russian meddling isn’t a thing of the past. It’s a
real concern for the future of our electoral system. As former FBI Director James Comey said during his testimony in front of the Senate Intelligence
Committee: “They’ll be back.” Putin doesn’t “side” with anyone but himself – he’s not a Republican or a Democrat, and this was not a one-off. Russia has
tried to undermine democratic regimes in France, the Netherlands and Germany with its disinformation campaigns, and it’ll be back to attempt to
undermine ours in 2018 and 2020. I don’t have any doubt about that.
Our country’s voters have critical decisions to make in the months and years ahead, and we need to make sure all Americans get the chance to make
their own choices free of foreign interference. I consider this some of the most important work of my career. As a member of the Senate Intelligence
Committee, I’m focused on learning exactly what the Russians did and how they did it. We must uncover the facts, hold people accountable and prevent
this from happening again.
I appreciate you taking the time to read my thoughts, and I’ll keep you in the loop as this continues to develop.
Thank you for your support.
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Trumpiversary: Here Are the Winners & Losers
9:33 am ET November 9, 2017 (Zacks) Print
Before President Trump’s election, many pundits found it difficult to assess the outcome of his victory as his proposals seemed contradictory or lacked
details. On the contrary, such pro-economic policies helped technology and financial stocks rise sharply, helping Wall Street’s major equity indicators
showing the best rally in the past 81 years.
Defense stocks have, in fact, left the rest in the dust. The sector gained the most following tensions between Trump and North Korea. Trump’s
Afghanistan strategy has also lent such stocks a fillip. However, not everyone has partaken in this year-long rally. Let us thus take a look at the potential
gainers and losers of the ‘Trump trade’.
Trump Rally Fed Off Wall Street Anxiety
It’s been a year since Trump’s stunning performance on election night that had rattled the global equity market. The Dow futures tumbled nearly 900
points as investors remained concerned about Trump’s questionable campaign promises on trade and immigration.
But, investors’ apprehensions ebbed by morning and U.S. stocks started moving north. In fact, the Dow’s 1-year gain since Trump’s win turned out to be
the highest post-Election Day rise since 1945. The blue-chip gauge surged 28.5% since Nov 8, 2016.
The S&P 500 also rallied 21% since the close of trading on Election Day 2016. This is the benchmark index’s third best performance during a President’s
first election since World War II, lagging that of Presidents John F Kennedy (1960, 29%) and George H. W. Bush (1988, 23%), as per Sam Stovall of
Though Trump had taken over a progressing economy with the stock market near an all-time high, his pro-growth and business-friendly policies as well as
bets on deregulation gave investors ample scope.
Technology and Financials Benefit From Trump Policy
Promises of pro-business legislation by Trump have primarily supported the gains for the software industry and the manufacturers of the internal
technologies — the semiconductor makers. The House’s latest corporate tax plan will lower taxes from 35% to 20%. As a result, tech companies’ after-tax
earnings will improve and lead to repatriation of trillions of dollars held abroad by such companies. Tech companies can use this extra cash for research
and developments, and mergers and acquisitions.
If the bill turns into a law, tech bigwigs including Apple Inc. AAPL and Microsoft Corporation MSFT as well as semiconductor giant NVIDIA Corporation
NVDA will largely benefit as they have billions of dollars stashed outside the United States. In fact, NVIDIA – Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock – became the
biggest gainer since the election, up a staggering 209%. Looking at the big picture, the technology sector is up around 39%.
You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Financials, in the meantime, has benefitted from the possibility of deregulating the sector. At the same time, Trump appointed Jerome Powell as the next
Federal Reserve chairman, someone who favors his regulatory changes.
Trump views the Dodd-Frank regulatory overhaul as a harsh measure, especially, on smaller banks. Trump has called for repealing parts of the Dodd-
Frank Act, which has for a considerable period of time limited operational flexibility. Trump’s administration also aims at increasing the minimum asset
threshold for banking behemoths, which will lend more flexibility, boost valuations, strengthen consolidation and increase lending. The value of stock and
options held by Jamie Dimon, the CEO of JPMorgan Chase & Co., turned out to be the highest since Trump’s win, while the broader financial sector
soared almost 35% in the said period.
Defense Stocks – By Far the Best Trade
Aerospace and the defense sector has been the best trade since Trump’s election. While deal making activity boosted the sector, Trump’s unrelenting
war of words against Pyongyang provided enough impetus to the sector to climb further north.
Let us also not forget that Trump revealed a reversal of strategy in Afghanistan, promising to “fight to win” instead of withdrawing entirely. He vowed to
ramp up U.S. engagement in Afghanistan, the country’s longest war to date. He added that moving troops away from Afghanistan would create a
“vacuum,” which terrorists would “instantly fill.”
Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. KTOS, AeroVironment, Inc. AVAV and Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings, Inc. AJRD have been the best-performing
components in the defense sector, with their stock value doubling since Trump’s victory.
Aerospace company Boeing Co gained the maximum at 87% since the election. Trump’s pledge to significantly increase federal spending related to
national security was cheered by Republicans and helped defense and aerospace stocks scale higher. He had promised to seek a $54-billion hike in
spending on tanks, ships and weapon systems. The defense budget will climb 10%, according to the White House, while Trump recommended $30 billion
in supplementary military spending for this year.
Which Sectors Are Not So Lucky?
Not everyone, though, has participated in the year-long rally. The three worst performing sectors since Trump’s election have been consumer staples,
energy and telecommunication services. While staples and energy managed to eke out marginal gains, telecommunications tanked nearly 10%.
While volatility in oil prices during Trump’s regime made investors cautious from investing in the energy sector, staples and telecommunications were
affected due to higher interest rates. The Federal Reserve has lifted rates twice this year and is expected to raise it again next month.
Retailers too have been affected during Trump’s regime, as they continue to adapt to changing consumer tastes and preferences as well as evolving
shopping methods. Notably, Macy's Inc M was among the biggest losers since the election, down 52.3%. Currently, the omnichannel retail company has a
Zacks Rank #4 (Sell).
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|8.8 Mile SOUTH LOOP
Up Mt. Charleston Real Time
Videos from Nov. 2011
|7.2 Mile RAIN TREE
Up/Down (Mt. Charleston)
|A specially equipped "firefighter drone chopper", similar to a MQ-8C Fire Scout (or their likes), could have stopped the fire in the first few hours after the thunderstorm had passed.
|Also, a Howard Hughes would have a 100 of those stationed in every western state, taking off as soon as a thunderstorm had passed to attack the fires - and not wait until it gets out of control!"
|My suggestion below dates from July 2013, at the height of the fire!
|(Excerpts from my July/Aug. 2013 web page)
|Mt. Charleston South Loop Trail
(now damaged by wildfire)
Click for video
NOTE: Some videos may have been removed by now!
|Mt. Charleston Mummy Mountain
& Raintree (Saved!)
289.3 EUROPE1 +30.9.17 02/23/2/17/4M
UP 08:37 PST - DEC. 11, 2017 WAG35
|interactive indices by WiWM
EUROPE V M P L F Ma
0,56% 0,62% 0,9788% 1,14% T I S H
0,70% 0,03% 0,15% 0,57% 0,04% 0,27% VMPLFMa
0,69% -,--% -,--% -,--% -,--% B To D N S
EURO 1,1793 December 11, 2017 07:50 ESTime 04:50 PSTime
12/11/2017 12:50 GMT
1,39% 0,91% 0,55% 1,19% T I S H
CLSD 1,49% 0,46% 0,96% 1,10% 1,05% V M P L F Ma
0,94% -,--% -,--% -,--% -,--% B To D N S
*SOME DATA MAY BE DELAYED UP TO 15 MINUTES*
EURO 1,1759 December 08, 2017 09:15 ESTime 06:15 PSTime
12/08/2017 15:15 CET
UPDATE: European banks rally, leading stocks to 1-month closing high
Today 12:08 PM ET December 08, 2017 (MarketWatch)
By Carla Mozee and Sara Sjolin, MarketWatch
U.K. and EU make breakthrough on Brexit divorce terms, clearing way to next stage of negotiations
European stocks rose Friday, scoring their highest close in a month, after the U.K. and the European Union came to terms on a Brexit divorce deal,
opening the way to a key phase of talks.
Bank stocks were in rally mode after news of the Brexit breakthrough and after global financial officials finally signed a deal Thursday to harmonize
How markets are moving: The Stoxx Europe 600 popped up 0.7% to close at 389.25, logging its highest close since Nov. 9, according to FactSet data.
For the week, the Stoxx 600 scored a 1.4% gain, following last week's fall of 0.7%.
(http://www.marketwatch.com/story/european-stocks-on-course-for-2nd-losing-session-with-tech-knocked-down-2017-12-06)In Frankfurt on Friday, the
DAX 30 index jumped 0.8% to 13,153.70, and in Paris, the CAC 40 gained 0.3% to 5,399.09. Spain's IBEX 35 leapt 0.6% to 10,321.10.
The U.K.'s FTSE 100 ended up 1% at 7,393.96, propelled higher by a drop in the pound.
The euro traded at $1.1765 at the time of the European close, down from $1.1774 late Thursday in New York.
What's moving markets: The president of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, said early Friday that "sufficient progress" has been made
(http://www.marketwatch.com/story/breakthrough-on-brexit-terms-opens-way-to-next-phase-of-talks-2017-12-08) on three key issues in Brexit negotiations
to allow the talks to advance to the next phase.
"I believe we have now made the breakthrough we needed," Juncker said at a press conference in Brussels.
After a night of intense negotiating, British Prime Minister Theresa May managed to resolve the final issue -- the Irish border -- needed to satisfy the EU
The Brussels negotiating team is now recommending that EU leaders give the go-ahead for Brexit talks to move to the second stage, which will cover trade
agreements and a potential transition period. The European Council meeting of EU leaders is scheduled for Dec. 14-15.
An EU official reportedly threw cold water on hopes of a quick deal on trade, saying it's not realistic to expect an agreement by March 2019, when the U.K.
leaves the union.
The pound hit an intraday high of $1.3521 following news of the deal, but since slumped to $1.3366. That compares with $1.3475 late Thursday in New
York. Against the euro, sterling fell to EUR1.1363 from EUR1.1445 on Thursday.
Analysts said the drop came not because traders were disappointed with the deal, but because a lot of the optimism had already been price in.
Read:The Game of Krones: Inside Denmark's battle to defend its 35-year-old currency peg
Stock movers: The Stoxx Europe 600 Bank Index surged 2.2%, marking its biggest leap since July.
On Thursday, international banking regulators agreed on the final Basel III standards for banks. The harmonized rules, conceived after the financial crisis,
aim to shield taxpayers from bank bailouts by making sure lenders have adequate cushion against shocks. The standards must now be passed into
national laws. The agreement further highlighted that most lenders hold a sufficient amount of capital.
Friday's Brexit breakthrough also helps the financial industry, as it brightens the prospects for a smooth transition when the U.K. withdraws from the EU in
In the bank group, Germany's Deutsche Bank AG (DBK.XE) (DBK.XE) jumped 3.3%, while shares of London-based Barclays PLC (BCS)(BCS) rose 2.5%.
France's Société Générale SA (GLE.FR) added 2.3%, Spain's Banco Santander SA (SAN) picked up 1.8%, and Italy's Unione di Banche Italiane SpA
(UBI.MI) moved up 2.2%.
What strategists are saying: "GBP/USD tumbled throughout the afternoon after the early morning buying frenzy fizzled. Sterling got off to a strong start in
the early hour due to the news that the U.K. and EU will move onto next round of talks in relation to Brexit. Traders a feeling in was going to be good news
that was reported this morning so some of the move was already priced in," said David Madden, market analyst at CMC Markets UK, in a note.
"The DAX has been given a boost after Martin Schulz of the Social Democrats suggested his party is warming up to the idea of entering into coalition talks
with Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union. The German economy has been performing well without a functioning government, and [the] news has
added to the positive sentiment," he added.
-Carla Mozee; 415-439-6400; AskNewswires@dowjones.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
December 08, 2017 12:08 ET (17:08 GMT)
Copyright (c) 2017 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.