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February 28, 2024

The Appetizer

“I know this was a nail-biter, but we are on the surface and we are transmitting. Welcome to the moon.”

  • Intuitive Machines CEO Steve Altemus after his company’s robotic spacecraft became the first privately built vehicle to land on the moon and the first American vehicle to accomplish the feat in more than 50 years.

Now, on to the numbers. Drum roll, please …

  • 11.3%: The percentage of Americans consumers’ disposable income spent on food in 2022 according to the USDA, the highest since 1991.
  • $340 million: The amount that a Washington, D.C. man claims he won after the Powerball and the D.C. Lottery claim they published his numbers by mistake. He is now suing.
  • 500 trillion times: How much brighter a quasar located 12 billion light-years away is compared to our sun. It is now the most luminous object ever detected.
  • £16.7 billion: The UK’s budget surplus in January, its biggest ever, due to record seasonal tax inflows.
  • 34: The number of years it took for Japan’s benchmark stock average to hit a new record high.

Dig In
The Dow Jones Industrial Average Inc. is joining the Dow Jones Industrial Average (Dow), alongside friends Apple, Walt Disney, Walmart, and others as part of this 30-stock index.

Let’s take the attention away from the S&P 500 for a little and break down what the Dow really is. Founded in 1885, the Dow is one of the OGs in terms of benchmarks. The index is comprised of 30 stocks and meant to be a representation of the overall U.S. stock market. But some would say it hasn’t been keeping up with the times, especially as technology companies make up a greater percentage of the overall market.

Changes have been relatively rare – only 93 in 92 years. Compare that to nearly 180 swaps in the S&P 500 since 2015! The last change was in 2020 when Amgen, Honeywell, and replaced ExxonMobil, Pfizer, and Raytheon Technologies.

So, with the addition of Amazon, Walgreens Boots Alliance got the boot.

Needless to say, the Dow has remained one of the go-to market metrics for millions of Americans, and it is consistently googled more than the S&P 500 or any other index. Who knows? Maybe one day, your favorite company will make the cut too.

Weekly Specials

Have you ever noticed how self-checkout at the grocery stores have turned into a slow-motion marathon instead of the promised express lane? Well, hold onto your boarding pass because the Transportation Security Administration wants to help you get through the security process quickly through self-screening.

Are teens ditching TikTok for investing? There’s been a boom in teen trading that’s also part of a wider rush to financial markets since the start of the pandemic. In fact, the share of Americans that invest in stocks is at an all-time high of 58%.

Elon Musk’s Neuralink aims to connect brains to computers with implanted chips, allowing computer control via thought. Progress is underway: The first Neuralink implant patient managed to move a computer mouse one month post-implant. Next up on Musk’s to-do list: click and drag capabilities.

Beyoncé made history by becoming the first Black woman to dominate Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart with “Texas Hold ‘Em” debuting at Number 1. The track has 31.9 million streams and 48,000 downloads since its release. Beyoncé has her fans “turning country,” with her highly anticipated country album set for release at the end of March.

Corporate Lunch

Meta has decided to stop recommending political content on Instagram and Threads unless users opt in. I guess I’ll never see another post from my uncles ever again.

Alphabet-owned self-driving company Waymo issued its first recall after two of its self-driving cars crashed into the same truck in Phoenix. I bet that truck was tailgating, and the robots got their revenge.

Braised pork and coffee? Why not? In its latest pitch to the Chinese consumer, Starbucks released an espresso drink with extra pork sauce and pork breast meat for garnish.

JPMorgan Chase is joining the Messi mania in Miami. The bank announced it has secured the naming rights to Inter Miami FC’s stadium in Fort Lauderdale.

Airlines upping bag prices: American Airlines announced it’s raising the cost to check your first bag from $30 to $35 if booked online and $40 at the airport, same with JetBlue and Alaska Airlines.

Nvidia exceeded its earnings expectations again, marking a 265% increase in revenue. Wall Street liked this news so much that Nvidia now has a higher market cap than Amazon.

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Diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against loss.

Indices are unmanaged and are not available for direct investment.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index is a capitalization-weighted index that is generally considered representative of the U.S. large capitalization market.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is an index that shows how 30 large, publicly owned companies based in the United States have traded during a standard trading session in the stock market.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.

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