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March 13, 2024

The Appetizer

“Me and Jaxson, we didn’t really have plans to take this to the college level.”

  • Gavin Hamann on how he and teammate Jaxson Remmick are receiving partial scholarships from Winthrop University to play cornhole and represent the school at college tournaments and other events. They are two-time American Cornhole League high school national champions.

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

  • 52%: The percentage of U.S. job postings on Indeed that did not mention any formal education requirement as of January 2024, up from 48% in 2019.
  • 72%: The percentage of 400 U.S. CEOs surveyed last year by KPMG that said generative AI is a top investment priority.
  • 126 inches: The amount of snowfall that Northern California’s Sugar Bowl Ski Resort received over a four-day period recently.
  • 40,000: The points milestone that LeBron James surpassed in his 21st season. He has the NBA all-time career points record.
  • 75%: The percentage of U.S. individuals that have confidence that retirement plan accounts can help individuals meet retirement goals.

Dig In
Japan’s Comeback

Japan is the world’s third largest economy and home to the second largest stock market after the U.S. Despite these accolades, the index measuring the 225 largest Japanese companies, the Nikkei 225, hasn’t had that great of a run in recent decades. It took the Nikkei over 34 years to finally hit a new all-time high last month. Talk about a slow burn comeback.

We won’t get into what caused the “lost decades,” but some of the factors include an aging population and deflation (aka prices going down). Deflation is “bad” because it causes people to delay purchases as they wait for prices to fall further.

But lately it seems some positive forces are converging to boost stock prices. To start, the era of deflation in Japan may be waning, with inflation running above the 2% target for 22 straight months. The government has also been making corporate sector reforms so that company CEOs are more focused on creating shareholder value. And it seems to be working as earnings are growing.

Weekly Specials

In a vote that can only be described as a slam dunk, the Dartmouth men’s basketball team has made history by deciding to unionize in a decisive 13-2 vote. This bold move marks a potential shift in the landscape of American college sports, with Dartmouth leading the charge.

Super Tuesday injected excitement into the 2024 election, hinting at a Biden-Trump rematch after Nikki Haley’s exit. Krispy Kreme sweetened the deal with a “Super TWOsday” promo, dishing out two free donuts. Mark your calendar for 2028 – donuts and democracy, a match made in heaven!

In the post-pandemic world of video calls, here’s a new twist: During a call among German military officials, one participant dialed in from Singapore on a non-secure line. Russia intercepted the call and leaked the audio on its state-run television channel RT. Talk about a security breach! It’s like a scene from a spy movie, but unfortunately, it’s all too real. Lesson learned: Stick to secure lines, people!

Taylor Swift is once again making headlines, this time due to a fascinating discovery about her family history. unveiled the grand discovery that T-Swift is related to Emily Dickinson, a famed poet from the mid-1800s. It’s no wonder that Swift’s upcoming album is suspected to be titled “The Tortured Poets Department.” But why tortured?

Corporate Lunch

American Airlines ordered 260 new planes to capitalize on growing travel demand. And someone has to pay for all those things, so they are adding more first-class seats.

Trader Joe’s recalled a bunch of its delicious steamed chicken soup dumplings because they might contain hard plastic from a permanent marker. Who has butter fingers in that factory?

It’s officially here! Target has rolled out its paid membership program in an effort to boost sales.

The new 2024 Dodge Charger is coming out with both electric and gas engine options, and the EV version can make noise imitating a supercharged V8.

Pop-Tarts asked Taylor Swift for her homemade toaster pastry recipe after she made some snacks for the Chiefs O-line. Frosted Cherry Pop-Tart (Taylor’s version).

McDonald’s is close to reaching a $65 million deal to become the new naming sponsor of France’s top soccer league, Ligue 1. Can’t wait to see the Monaco Hamburglars face the Paris Officer Big Macs.

Meta experienced major outages and had to announce that it was back online via a post on X, ouchie.

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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 Nikkei 225 is a price-weighted index of the 225 top Japanese companies listed in the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

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

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