10 Wednesday AM Reads

My mid-week morning train WFH reads:

What’s behind the growth slump? Takeaways from census data Our past decade’s sluggish rate had similar beginnings in the long shadow of the Great Recession. The drawn-out recovery saw many young adults struggling to enter the job market, delaying marriage and starting a family. That dealt a blow to the nation’s birthrate. Then the pandemic hit last year and made matters worse. (AP)

Most Americans Would Take a Pay Cut to Keep Working From Home Some workers will go back to the office after the pandemic, but not enough to save central business districts from permanent drops in spending that will permanently remake American downtowns. (Slate) see also Why Sam Zell Is Bullish on Offices—But Won’t Invest in Them Anymore And where the Grave Dancer is branching out into other things instead, juggling businesses like logistics, health care, and energy. (CIO)

Is ESG Outperformance Just an Illusion? Research suggests the excess returns delivered by ESG funds come from a source other than companies’ environmental, social, and governance records. (Institutional Investor)

Why Dead Trees Are ‘the Hottest Commodity on the Planet’ Blame climate change, wildfires, hungry beetles … and Millennial home buyers. (The Atlantic)

The secret credit card that’s only for the rich And other tales of America’s concierge industry. The no-limit black card, issued by invitation only, instantly identifies its holder as what’s known in the trade as a “whale”—someone with vast resources. Amex won’t say what it takes to get an invite, but word on the street is that you must have been a Platinum cardholder for at least a year, ringing up a minimum of $350,000 in annual charges. (Backbencher)

China is wrong to think the US faces inevitable decline Its economic assets are too great and, while America could falter, that would be its choice and not its fate (Financial Times)

Before You Answer, Consider the Opposite Possibility Pushing yourself to listen to contrary opinions is the way to make better judgments.  (The Atlantic)

The New iOS Update Lets You Stop Ads From Tracking You—So Do It Facebook and other advertisers fought the move, but App Tracking Transparency is finally here. (Wired) see also Breaking Point: How Mark Zuckerberg and Tim Cook Became Foes The chief executives of Facebook and Apple have opposing visions for the future of the internet. Their differences are set to escalate this week. (New York Times)

Malaria vaccine is up to 77% effective in young children — now come tougher trials A vaccine against malaria has raised hopes that it might one day prove to be an effective weapon against one of the world’s biggest killers of children. Oxford’s R21 was up to 77% effective at preventing malaria over the course of one year — which, if confirmed, would clear a 75% effectiveness target set by the World Health Organization. (Nature)

Be sure to check out our Masters in Business interview this weekend with Jonathan Miller, co-founder of Miller Samuel. Miller is the go-to expert on real-estate appraisals and transactions, running one of the most prominent real-estate data analytics firm, and their data engine powers numerous real estate brokerage research nationally. He is also sought after as the go-to appraiser for many of the most expensive penthouses in Manhattan.

 

How Covid Upended a Century of Patterns in U.S. Deaths

Source: New York Times

 

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