Good morning. It's Thursday, Oct. 14, and we're covering continued concern over consumer prices, a legendary actor touching the edge of space, and much more. Have feedback? Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Inflation rose at 5.4% in September as compared to the same time last year, according to data released yesterday, the highest jump in the measure since 2008.
The metric estimates the change in a currency's purchasing power; higher inflation means consumers can buy fewer goods with each dollar they spend (see 101). Analysts say a number of factors are driving up prices—supply chains slow to rebound from the pandemic, a boom in demand, a shortage of workers, and more.
The effect of multiple rounds of stimulus bills on current consumer spending is unclear. Food, housing, and gas prices contributed to the majority of the rise in prices.
Cost-of-living adjustments to Social Security payments, fueled by the rising prices, are set to rise 5.9% in 2022, the highest jump in 39 years. The average recipient will receive paychecks of $1,657 each month.
To Boost or Not To Boost
A decision on booster shots for the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine may be in doubt after data submitted by the company involved a relatively low number of participants—just over 8,000—in its trial analysis. An advisory panel meets today to consider boosters for the Moderna vaccine, and tomorrow to consider J&J's shot.
Almost 77% of Americans over the age of 12 have received at least one vaccine dose (see data). Roughly 103 million people have received the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, followed by 69 million people who have received a shot from Moderna, and just 15 million who've received the Johnson & Johnson shot. Compare the three shots here.
Across the Atlantic, British officials apologized yesterday following a report concluding the nation's early pandemic response was one of the worst public health failures in the country's history.
Shatner In Space
Famed actor William Shatner successfully flew into space aboard Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin New Shepard rocket yesterday. Best known for his role as Captain Kirk from the original “Star Trek,” Shatner became the oldest person to reach the edge of space at age 90. The rocket flew an estimated 66 miles (4 miles beyond the Kármán line) above West Texas before safely parachuting back to Earth; the trip lasted just under 11 minutes.
The flight was the second successful human mission for Blue Origin, coming three months after Bezos himself flew into space. Shatner was joined by Blue Origin’s Audrey Powers, Planet Labs cofounder Chris Boshuizen, and Dassault Systemes’ Glen de Vries. Boshuizen and de Vries reportedly paid $250K each for the experience. Shatner called the trip a “profound experience.”
>Diana Taurasi and the Phoenix Mercury top Chicago Sky in overtime to even up WNBA finals series at 1-1 (More) | US men's national team claims 2-1 victory over Costa Rica in World Cup qualifier (More) | See full CONCACAF World Cup qualifying table (More)
>More than 60,000 Hollywood behind-the-scenes workers to strike Monday if deal is not reached on their call for higher wages and better working conditions (More)
>"Squid Game" tops "Bridgerton" to become Netflix's biggest series launch ever, with more than 111 million global viewers since its Sept. 17 premiere (More)
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Science & Technology
>Apple considers adding health monitoring features to its AirPods, including temperature and posture monitoring (More)
>Astronomers make first observation of an exoplanet that appears to have survived the death of the star at the center of its orbit (More) | Mysterious radio signal detected from the center of the Milky Way; may originate from a previously unknown type of stellar object (More)
>New models conclude Venus may have always been too hot to have oceans, contradicting earlier studies that it may have been hospitable to ancient life (More)
Business & Markets
>US stock markets increase (S&P 500 +0.3%, Dow +0.0%, Nasdaq +0.7%); S&P 500 ends three consecutive days of decline (More)
>Nation’s largest bank JPMorgan beats earnings expectations; CEO Jamie Dimon signals the economy is healthy (More)
>Delta Air Lines exceeds expectations and posts first quarterly profit since the pandemic, but warns fuel costs will pressure earnings in fourth quarter and beyond (More)
Politics & World Affairs
>At least five people dead and two others injured following a reported bow-and-arrow attack near the Norwegian capital of Oslo; suspect, previously flagged for radicalization, taken into custody (More) | At least 46 dead in southern Taiwan fire (More)
>Hurricane Pamela makes landfall along western Mexico as a Category 1 storm; remnants of the system moving overland toward Texas (More)
>Two major west coast ports to temporarily remain open 24 hours a day, seven days a week to help relieve the country's supply chain bottlenecks (More)
Why Does the Internet Keep Breaking?
BBC | Joe Tidy. A series of global technical meltdowns at some of the world's biggest internet companies suggest the web's backbone has become too centralized. (Read)
Who Was the Bad Art Friend?
NYT | Robert Kolker. When accusations of plagiarism around an award-winning short story spiral into a full-blown legal feud, one question remains—who owns the right to personal experience? (Read)
And it makes sense: They're delivering prescription drugs to their customers' doors for free (saving time) and using smart software to automatically search and apply coupons (saving money). As they expand their product offerings to the $61B telehealth industry, they're looking to raise additional funding. Check out this customer-centric business and investment opportunity today!
Clickbait: This sign does not lead to "Squid Game," police say.
Historybook: President Dwight D. Eisenhower born (1890); Chuck Yeager becomes first person to fly faster than speed of sound (1947); Cuban Missile Crisis begins (1962); Martin Luther King Jr. wins Nobel Peace Prize (1964); RIP American photographer Dody Weston Thompson (2012).
"We must learn how to compose differences, not with arms, but with intellect and decent purpose."
- Dwight D. Eisenhower
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