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Good morning. It's Wednesday, March 15, and we're covering signs of cooling inflation, a federal proposal to tackle forever chemicals, and much more. First time reading? Sign up here.


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Need To Know

Russian Jet Hits US Drone

A Russian fighter jet collided with a US military drone yesterday, causing the uncrewed US aircraft to crash into the Black Sea. The collision marked one of the first direct military incidents between the two nations since the start of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.


US military officials said while such intercepts over the Black Sea are not uncommon, the recent collision was considered unsafe. The MQ-9 Reaper drone (see 101) was on a routine mission in international airspace when two Russian Su-27 fighter jets tried to intercept it near Crimea. Officials said the fighter jets dumped fuel on and flew in front of the drone before colliding. Russia's defense ministry claimed the drone was flying into an area it has declared as off limits as part of its Ukraine invasion.


Separately, Poland is considering sending Soviet-designed fighter jets to Ukraine within the next four to six weeks upon approval from a coalition of allies. See more war updates here.


Inflation Eases

The consumer price index in February fell for the eighth consecutive month to 6% year-over-year growth, down from the 6.4% rise in January and in-line with economist expectations. The annual figure is the lowest increase since September 2021.


Prices increased by 0.4% on a month-to-month basis. Housing was the biggest contributor to overall inflation, rising 0.8% for the month and 8.1% for the year and accounting for 70% of February’s gain. Groceries (10.2%) and energy (5.2%) prices for the 12 months ending in February also contributed to the increase. Core CPI, which excludes food and energy prices, increased by 0.5% on the month and 5.5% on the year. See data here.


Elevated inflation, paired with the recent collapses of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank, poses a challenge for the Federal Reserve, which aims to bring inflation down to 2%. It is unclear how officials will react at the Fed's meeting next week; however, experts predict the Fed to continue with a 0.25 percentage point increase.


Limiting 'Forever Chemicals'

The US Environmental Protection Agency announced a proposal to limit the amount of six "forever chemicals" in drinking water yesterday, the first measure of its kind nationwide. The rule, set to take effect in 60 days, would require municipalities to invest millions in testing and water-filtration systems. 


Poly- and perfluoroalkyl substances are a group of thousands of heat-resistant and oil- and water-repellent synthetic chemicals first developed in the early 20th century for use in textiles, fire suppression, and more. Studies have indicated nondegradable polymers build up in humans and wildlife, where they are linked to health risks, including cancer. US agencies report almost every American is likely to have some PFAS buildup


The rules would require water providers to reduce the incidence of the two most common PFAS to four parts per trillion, where one part equals one drop in 21 million gallons of water. See a global map of contamination here

In partnership with Monogram

On Track To NASDAQ


Surgeons performing joint replacements in 2023 often use similar technology to what was used in the 1980s. Hand saws. Bone cement. Jigs. Studies show that more than 100,000 knee replacements fail yearly, and up to 33% of patients report chronic pain after surgery.


Monogram is looking to change that. With the help of advanced surgical robotics, Monogram aims to make knee and hip replacement surgeries safer, less invasive and more precise. Recently, Monogram made history with a remote robotic surgery performed over 1,700 miles away.


The joint replacement industry is currently valued at $19.4B—by 2027, it’s estimated that 50% of knee replacements will be robotic. Monogram is running its last offering as a private company and giving investors like you the opportunity to own a piece of the company; explore Monogram's investment opportunity here ahead of their planned NASDAQ listing (ticker: MGRM).


Disclosure: This is a paid advertisement for Monogram Orthopedics’ Regulation A+ offering. Learn more at invest.monogramorthopedics.com/disclaimers

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In The Know

Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

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> The 2026 men's World Cup new format approved, including expanding field from 32 to 48 teams and a 32-team knockout stage; see full list of tournament changes (More)

> Harvey Weinstein won't face trial on remaining charges in Los Angeles; Weinstein was sentenced to 16 years in prison on three prior sexual assault charges and is currently serving 23 years for separate New York City crimes (More)

> NCAA women's basketball tournament tips off today with First Four matchups (More) | See complete women's bracket (More) | ... and men's bracket (More)

From our partners: This shoe had a 77,000 waitlist. CARIUMA sneakers have amassed over 33,000 five-star reviews (several have come from the 1440 team and even Ashton Kutcher is a fan) thanks to their broken-in fit and dozens of classic colors, prints, and limited edition collabs. Bonus: CARIUMA is B-corp certified, so you can feel good wearing them. Get your pair for the spring before they sell out again and enjoy a 1440-exclusive 20% off with code 144020.


Science & Technology

> OpenAI releases GPT-4, an update of the large language model underpinning ChatGPT (More) | Google to roll out AI-powered features in its suite of products including Gmail, Google Docs, Google Sheets, and more (More)

> Scientists capture first images of two city-sized icebergs that broke free from Antarctica's Brunt ice shelf since 2021 (More, w/video)

> Engineers develop method to reconfigure wireless networks to allow groups of autonomous robots to coordinate during emergency response scenarios in real time (More)


Business & Markets

> US stock markets close higher (S&P 500 +1.7%, Dow +1.1%, Nasdaq +2.1%), S&P Regional Banking ETF up 2.1%; First Republic Bank up 27% (More)

> Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission open investigations into Silicon Valley Bank collapse (More)

> Meta (Facebook) to lay off another 10,000 workers; the company’s second significant workforce reduction in four months (More)


Politics & World Affairs

> State of Ohio sues rail company Norfolk Southern over February train derailment that spilled hazardous chemicals in the town of East Palestine (More) | President Joe Biden signs executive order strengthening background checks for gun purchases (More)

> Nor'easter drops more than two feet of snow in some spots of the US Northeast, leaves more than 300,000 customers without power (More) | How nor'easters form (More)| Tropical Cyclone Freddy death toll passes 100 victims (More)

> Polish court convicts activist in high-profile case for helping obtain abortion pills for a domestic abuse survivor; Justyna Wydrzyńska was sentenced to eight months of community service (More)

In partnership with Monogram

Making Surgery Less Invasive


In 2023, a Monogram robot made history by performing a successful fully remote surgery on a cadaver in front of a thousand people. Monogram hopes to use its robots for more advanced procedures in the future, aiming to advance the joint replacement industry by improving surgical success and long-term patient comfort.


With limited innovations in joint replacement tech over the past 40 years, Monogram hopes its modernized approach will advance the standard of care in orthopedics. Learn more about the investment opportunity here ahead of their planned NASDAQ listing.



Disclosure: This is a paid advertisement for Monogram Orthopedics’ Regulation A+ offering. Learn more at invest.monogramorthopedics.com/disclaimers

Please support our sponsors!


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Historybook: The Ides of March: Julius Caesar assassinated by Brutus (44 BCE); President Andrew Jackson born (1767); Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg born (1933); Terrorist attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, kills 51 (2019).

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