Good morning. It’s often said that experience is the best teacher – just ask the NYU School of Law. The university was put in a tough spot when one of its academic YouTube videos exploring the finer details of copyright law was taken down for copyright infringement.
“To be able to ask a question clearly is two-thirds of the way to getting it answered.”
– John Ruskin
The three major U.S. stock indexes fell significantly on Monday, with the Dow (7.8%), S&P 500 (7.6%), and Nasdaq (7.3%) all experiencing their largest single-day percentage drops since at least Dec. 2008.
A quick bit of context…
Dow: closed at ~23,850 yesterday (lowest since Jan. 9, 2019).
S&P 500: closed at ~2,750 yesterday (lowest since Feb. 13, 2019).
Nasdaq: closed at ~7,950 yesterday (lowest since Oct. 9, 2019).
Stop. Wait a minute… The market freefall began with the opening bell at 9:30 a.m. ET – minutes later, a 7% drop in the S&P 500 triggered a market ‘circuit breaker’ that halted all trading for fifteen minutes. The decrease has largely been attributed to coronavirus fears along with a combination of:
The upcoming expiration of OPEC+ oil production cuts at the end of March.
Saudi Arabia’s decision to drastically cut oil prices and increase oil production beginning in April, effectively starting an ‘oil war’ with Russia.
Where do we go from here? On Monday, the Federal Reserve – which cut interest rates last week – said it will increase the amount of money it is offering banks for their short-term funding needs. Overnight trading on Dow futures indicates the market will open today up about 400 points after President Trump suggested the possibility of payroll tax cuts.
So… what are people saying?
Ted Cruz is taking coronavirus seriously — why can’t his fellow Republicans?
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The Race for the White House
Over the weekend, former presidential candidates Kamala Harris and Corey Booker endorsed Joe Biden, while Rev. Jesse Jackson endorsed Bernie Sanders. A total of 352 delegates are at stake today, as the two (along with Tulsi Gabbard) face off in contests across six states.
Global cases rose above 113,500 with more than 4,000 deaths. According to the NYT, the number of confirmed U.S. cases rose to 696, with 26 deaths.
Several Congressmen have entered a self-imposed quarantine after coming into contact with an infected person at the Conservative Political Action Conference.
Thirty-six states (plus Washington D.C.) have seen at least one confirmed case of the virus, with the most being Washington (167 cases) and New York (142 cases).
Italy’s PM expanded the lockdown placed on millions of northern citizens to the rest of the country on Monday, banning all non-emergency travel until April 3.
South Korea recorded just 248 new cases of the virus (7,382 total), its lowest single-day increase since Feb. 25.
More: The largest study on the virus from Johns Hopkins concluded that most patients begin exhibiting symptoms roughly five days after infection.
Sudanese PM Survives Assassination
According to Sudanese officials, Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok survived an assassination attempt on his convoy Monday morning as he was heading to work. Hamdok tweeted after the incident that he was “safe and in good shape” – authorities currently have no leads as to the perpetrators.
More: Hamdok is the leader of Sudan’s transitional government after the military overthrew longtime President Omar al-Bashir last year.
Twitter announced it has reached a deal with activist investor Elliot Management and private equity firm Silver Lake. Under the terms of the agreement, CEO Jack Dorsey’s role will remain unchanged, while the company agreed to give Elliot and Silver Lake each one board seat and allocate $2 billion towards share repurchases.
More: Elliot purchased a more than $1 billion stake in Twitter earlier this month, and reportedly nominated four new board members in a push to remove Dorsey.
The chair of Wells Fargo’s board of directors, Elizabeth Duke, resigned on Sunday, along with another board member, James Quigley. Duke and Quigley were scheduled to testify before Congress on Wednesday regarding the bank’s fake accounts scandal.
More: The company was found guilty of creating millions of fraudulent accounts for its customers without consent.
Shop ‘Til You Drop (Don’t Stop!)
Amazon announced it will begin offering its cashier-less checkout technology to other retailers. Called “Just Walk Out,” Amazon’s system uses a combination of cameras, sensors, and artificial intelligence techniques to allow customers to shop, then leave the store without having to stop and pay.
Amid spreading coronavirus fears, an annual Ohio sports festival prohibited spectators from attending, leaving organizers with a ton of food and nobody to eat it.
Instead of throwing the food away, the festival sent a refrigerated truck with thousands of meals to first responders dealing with the Tennessee earthquake.
Music on the Brain
Matthew Whitaker is not your average piano prodigy. Now eighteen years old, Matt was born blind and survived a whopping eleven surgeries before the age of two.
Matt’s immense musical talent paired with his disability caught the attention of a neurologist, who made a fascinating discovery when he scanned Matt’s brain – his unused visual cortex had been repurposed and was now active when Matt listened to music.
Dress to Impress
When students participated in “Dress as Your Favorite Person Day” at an Arkansas elementary school, many of the kids chose their favorite athlete or movie star to emulate – but not 5-year-old Easton Blocker.
The kindergartener enlisted his mom to help him dress up as the school’s security guard, Jeffrey Cross, and surprise the man Easton calls his hero and best friend.
Attention All Tea Lovers:
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Buying a gift for someone, but aren’t sure what to get them.
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Do any of these sound like you? If so, we’re excited for you to begin your tea journey with us.
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Come Fly With Me… films like Blade Runner and Back to the Future led us to believe flying cars are right around the corner. As it turns out, they are – you just may not own one (15 min. video).
Royal Refusal… Prince Andrew has reportedly hired a top extradition lawyer in the UK and refused to cooperate with NY federal prosecutors investigating his former associate, the late Jeffrey Epstein.
Throw me a bone… Danish startup Particle3D is working on a method to insert custom 3D printed bone implants that fuse with the human skeleton before eventually disappearing.
Sharespace… a startup called DoNotPay (previously featured in the Dose of Random) is now offering a paid browser extension that allows users to privately share streaming service login information with friends.
the DONUT’s Dibs
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Commander ‘n Chief
Who was the only U. S. President to also serve as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court?
A) Franklin Pierce B) Rutherford B. Hayes C) Chester A. Arthur D) William Howard Taft