10.18.2017

*|MC:SUBJECT|*
10.18.2017
NEED TO KNOW.
Subsidies.
In a fit of bipartisanship, Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Patty Murray (D-WA) agreed on legislation to support key Obamacare subsidies for the next two years. The subsidies, known as cost sharing reductions, help reduce out-of-pocket costs for consumers enrolled in the health insurance exchanges. In addition, consumers of any age would be able to purchase catastrophic insurance - plans that cover debilitating injury but have high copays - currently limited to those 30 years and younger. At the same time, millions in funding would be restored for public efforts to enroll people in the public exchanges, which open next month. The agreement between Alexander and Murray is significant as both lead the important Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee. If the bill passes, it would offer two years of certainty to insurers. 

Forbes 400. 
Forbes released its annual list of the wealthiest people in the US, with a number of familiar faces mixed with newcomers.
Bill Gates ($89B), Jeff Bezos ($81B), Warren Buffett ($78B) topped the list, followed by Mark Zuckerberg ($71B) - the biggest gainer, with his net worth increasing by $15B since last year's list. More than just a list of rich people, the rankings reflect broader dynamics in the economy, including the increasing dominance of the tech sector - the founders of Twitter, Snap, and WhatsApp made the list - and speed at which wealthy Americans gain more wealth. The minimum amount needed to make the list jumped a whopping 18% to $2B, up $300M from last year. About 5% of the list weren't on last year's - you can check out all 22 newcomers here. President Trump dropped 92 spots (ranked #256 at $3.1B) due primarily to a tough New York real estate market and a costly election campaign. 

Ophelia.

Ireland is recovering after one of the most powerful storms in decades passed through the island, killing at least three and leaving 360,000 without power. The tenth hurricane of the season, Ophelia was downgraded to a tropical storm before hitting the island, though the country lacks experience in dealing with such storms. The storm itself was a rare occurrence - it reached Category 3 status on Saturday, making it the strongest storm that far east (26.6 degrees west) on record. Hurricanes are fueled in part by warm ocean waters, and since water tends to get colder as you move north, storms usually lose strength as they move north of the tropics. The event was so unusual, it actually went off the grid of the National Hurricane Center's simulations. Water was also out at 66,000 households - a number which could jump if power is not restored to the country's water treatment plants
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IN THE KNOW.

Sports, Entertainment & Culture.

> Solo: Star Wars Han Solo movie title announced - Solo: A Star Wars Story (More)
> Man Booker literary prize awarded to American author George Saunders for his novel Lincoln in the Bardo (More)
> Celtics' Gordon Hayward suffers horrific leg injury in NBA's opening game, possibly out for season (More)
 

Science & Technology.

> Most powerful to date bio-solar battery developed, key for remote medical sensors (More)
> Study says self-driving cars could ease traffic, increase urban sprawl (More)
> Regina Dugan, head of Facebook's secretive hardware lab, leaving after only 18 months (More)
 

Business & Markets.

> 87 year old Investor George Soros transfers $18B of his net worth to his foundation to “build vibrant and tolerant democracies” (More)
> Goldman Sachs beats estimates, yet stock down 2% on sluggish trading revenues (More) | Morgan Stanley beats estimates, led by wealth management biz growth (More)
> Harley Davidson revenues slide 10%, profits 40%, as management projects 6-8% decrease in total bikes shipped in 2017 (More)
 

Politics & World Affairs.

> DOJ goes after Chinese fentanyl makers selling online in US (More)
> WH drug czar nominee Tom Marino withdraws after 60 Minutes expose on ties to drug industry (More)
> Hawaii Judge blocks WH travel ban one day before it goes into effect (More)
ETCETERA.
Data: Despite nationalist wave, world is still primarily committed to democracy (from Pew). 

Unruffled: Dog refuses to leave goat flock during CA wildfires - successfully herds through the blaze.

Science FTW: The world's first negative emissions plant turns CO2 into stone.

New projections suggest the world may hit peak oil demand much sooner than thought. 

Pole dancing recognized as an international sport - next stop, Olympics?

Lists: The best cupcakes in all 50 states

Watch: The world's first giant robot fight

Compound in red wine, resveratrol, boosts immune system - but only at low doses.

Photos: See inside the Swiss mountain where rich people store their bitcoin.

Clickbait: Google stops measuring distance in calories and cupcakes after backlash.

Historybook: US purchases Alaska from Russia (1867); HBD Chuck Berry (1926); RIP Thomas Edison (1931); Lee Harvey Oswald born (1939); Watson & Crick win Nobel prize for DNA sequence (1962); Reggie “Mr. October” Jackson has famous 3-HR game in World Series (1977); Pipeline explosion kills 700 in Nigeria (1998).
"GENIUS IS ONE PERCENT INSPIRATION AND NINETY-NINE PERCENT PERSPIRATION."
-Thomas Edison
 
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