Avert your eyes! My Sunday morning look at incompetency, corruption and policy failures — now SVB-free!:
• Wealthy Executives Make Millions Trading Competitors’ Stock With Remarkable Timing: Executives at companies can also have extensive access to nonpublic information about rivals, partners or vendors through their business. Buying or selling stock based on that knowledge may or may not run afoul of insider-trading law. (ProPublica)
• China’s Faith in All-Powerful Xi Shaken by Chaos of Covid Pivot: After imposing three years of sacrifice, Xi Jinping’s government let Covid tear through the population in two months. Moving on won’t be easy. (Businessweek) see also Bao Fan: Why do Chinese billionaires keep vanishing? The disappearance last month of technology industry dealmaker Bao Fan has rekindled interest in a recent Chinese phenomenon – vanishing billionaires. The founder of China Renaissance Holdings – with a client list that has included internet giants Tencent, Alibaba and Baidu – is seen as a titan in the country’s tech sector. (BBC)
• Eli Lilly is slashing insulin prices, but hold your applause. The truth is that Lilly’s price cuts won’t cost it a thin dime in profits; it may even collect higher profits. Wall Street recognized that instantaneously: The price of Lilly shares rose on the day of the announcement and has continued to move higher ever since, gaining nearly 6% through Thursday’s trading. The price rollback still doesn’t bring Lilly insulin back to where it should be on an inflation-adjusted basis compared with the price of its key product, Humalog, upon its launch in 1996. (Los Angeles Times)
• The Misinformation Is the Point: There’s a Lesson for Fighting Misinformation Buried in the Fox News Drama; For Fox News, peddling falsehoods is good for the bottom line. (Slate)
• Retreat in Rodanthe: Along three blocks in a North Carolina beach town, severe erosion is upending life, forcing hard choices and offering a glimpse of the dilemmas other coastal communities will face. (Washington Post)
• Everything you think you know about homelessness is wrong: A failure or unwillingness to carefully look at the data has led countless people to believe that the primary drivers of homelessness are drugs, mental health, poverty, the weather, progressive policies, or virtually anything and everything that isn’t housing. And while some, but not all, of the aforementioned factors are indeed factors in homelessness, none of them, not a single one of them, are primary factors. Because if you want to understand homelessness, you have to follow the rent. And if you follow the rent, you will come to realize that homelessness is primarily a housing problem. (Noahpinion)
• The Right-Wing Zealot Who Wrecked the Budget Process and Made Washington Dysfunctional: Grover Norquist’s 45-year-long reign of terror started with a simple pledge. (New Republic)
• Catholic group spent millions on app data that tracked gay priests A group of philanthropists poured money into a Denver nonprofit that obtained dating and hookup app data and shared it with bishops around the country, a Post investigation has found “A group of conservative Colorado Catholics has spent millions of dollars to buy mobile app tracking data that identified priests who used gay dating and hookup apps and then shared it with bishops around the country.” So many things about this are so wrong. (Washington Post)
• At center of Fox News lawsuit, Sidney Powell and a ‘wackadoodle’ email: In TV guest spots, the Trump-affiliated lawyer injected far-fetched and debunked claims of widespread fraud into the mainstream. Now the decision to keep booking her is at the heart of a $1.6 billion defamation case. (Washington Post) see also The election-denying Republicans who aided Trump’s ‘big lie’ and got promoted: In 2022, many Republicans who embraced election denialism were re-elected and, in some cases, elevated to higher office. (The Guardian)
• These young female athletes died by suicide. They all had head injuries in common: Females may be more susceptible to concussion, and they also have worse and prolonged symptoms after their injury than men, according to a review of 25 studies of sport-related concussion published in the Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine. (CNN)
Be sure to check out our Masters in Business this week with Cliff Asness, co-founder and chief investment officer at AQR Capital Management. The quant firm manages $100 billion in 40 diversified strategies across equity and alternatives, applying mathematics to market data and making evidence-based investments. His published research can be found at Cliff’s Perspectives.
How Can We Measure Droughts and Deluges? Weigh the Planet
Source: New York Times
To learn how these reads are assembled each day, please see this.