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Satchu's Rich Wrap-Up
Monday 17th of August 2020

27-JUL-2020 :: Drinking the Kool-Aid
World Of Finance


Euro 1.25 $DXY < 90.00 Gold $2,200+ Silver $50.00+ EM a Sell

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The #Euro Hedgefunds increase their net bullish bets total long Euro bets to fresh record of almost 200k, essentially doubling positions over 6 weeks @Schuldensuehner
World Of Finance

The #Euro has become the speculators' darling. Hedgefunds increase their net bullish bets by another 19,103 positions, bringing total long Euro bets to fresh record of almost 200k, essentially doubling positions over 6 weeks & rebounding from a net short as late as early March.

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Here is a beautiful view from Camp III (8300 m) on Mt #Everest, Tibet. @EverestToday

"Because in the end, you won't remember the time you spent working or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain. " ― Jack Kerouac

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There was no one named Floyd in her life. Still, that was the start. Even before she saw the little girl in the red pinafore, there were those disconnected words.@NewYorker

Bill drove around the curve. A pair of black crows, plump and shiny, lifted off from something pasted to the macadam in a splat of blood. They had eaten so well that Carol wasn’t sure they were going to get out of the way until they did. There were no crosses, not on the left, not on the right. Just roadkill in the middle, a woodchuck or something, now passing beneath a luxury car that had never been north of the Mason-Dixon Line.

But there was another sign. It was Mary the Mother of God, the ghost of all her childhood days, holding out her hands the way she did on the medallion Carol’s grandmother had given her for her tenth birthday. Her grandmother had pressed it into her hand and looped the chain around her fingers, saying, “Wear her always as you grow, because all the hard days are coming.” She had worn it, all right. At Our Lady of Angels grammar and middle school she had worn it, then at St. Vincent de Paul high. She wore the medal until breasts grew around it like ordinary miracles, and then someplace, probably on the class trip to Hampton Beach, she had lost it. Coming home on the bus she had tongue-kissed for the first time. Butch Soucy had been the boy, and she had been able to taste the cotton candy he’d eaten.

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The whole nation united today against the terror and dictatorship. However, Lukashenka doesn't give up. And it seems he really wants Putin to interfere. Does Putin want that? @franakviacorka
Law & Politics

The whole nation united today against the terror and dictatorship. However, Lukashenka doesn't give up. He still believes that he is in control of the situation. And it seems he really wants Putin to interfere. Does Putin want that?

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Backed into a corner as his regime collapses, Lukashenko says he’s considering asking Putin for help, because the popular uprising against him is “a threat not only to Belarus, but to the entire post-Soviet world.” @ChristopherJM
Law & Politics

Backed into a corner as his regime collapses, Lukashenko says he’s considering asking Putin for help, because the popular uprising against him is “a threat not only to Belarus, but to the entire post-Soviet world.” Will Putin respond?

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The last address by Nicolae Ceaușescu. If you know what I mean. @franakviacorka
Law & Politics

Lukashenka is gathering thousands for the rally in his support today. I am curious if he understands all risks, and he remembers the last address by Nicolae Ceaușescu. If you know what I mean.

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Global cases broadly steady, Hints of a long term acceleration. #COVID19 @video4me

>10%: Bahamas¹⁴⁷ Trinidad and Tobago¹⁶⁵

>5%: Ethiopia⁶⁴ Libya⁹⁴ Tunisia¹³¹ Malta¹⁴¹ Aruba¹⁵³ Belize¹⁷⁰ Turks and Caicos¹⁷⁸

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Currency Markets at a Glance WSJ
World Currencies

Euro 1.1859

Dollar Index 92.951

Japan Yen 106.50

Swiss Franc 0.9080

Pound 1.31

Aussie 0.7184

India Rupee 74.833

South Korea Won 1185.03

Brazil Real 5.4217

Egypt Pound 15.93

South Africa Rand 17.3475

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Dollar heads for longest weekly losing streak in a decade @Reuters.
World Currencies

The dollar steadied on Friday as a spike in U.S. bond yields and a drag on risk sentiment from lacklustre Chinese economic data slowed a selldown of the U.S. currency, which was headed for its longest weekly losing streak since 2010.


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Brothers Nelson Bunker Hunt and Herbert Hunt attempted to corner the world silver markets in the late 1970s and early 1980s, at one stage holding the rights to more than half of the world's deliverable silver.

“Hunt had a paranoid world view and it made sense to him to amass silver and hang on to it.”

Most traders buy and sell paper. The actual stuff represented by that paper is delivered to someone else. Hunt wanted the silver.

He chartered three 707 jet aircraft to haul the metal to warehouses in Switzerland and hired a dozen sharpshooting cowboys to provide security, according to Knight.

When he began buying silver with his brothers in 1973, it cost $2 an ounce and a big consumer was Eastman Kodak to make film.

Before the Hunts were through, seven years later, they’d stockpiled more than 200 million ounces, the price was soaring past $45 an ounce and regulators were preparing to take measures to make sure nothing like what Nelson Bunker Hunt had done would ever happen again.

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27-JAN-2020 :: “But it is a curve each of them feels, unmistakably. It is the parabola.''
World Of Finance

“But it is a curve each of them feels, unmistakably. It is the parabola. They must have guessed, once or twice -guessed and refused to believe -that everything, always, collectively, had been moving toward that purified shape latent in the sky, that shape of no surprise, no second chance, no return.’’

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Madagascar president's herbal tonic fails to halt Covid-19 spike @BBC

Hospitals in Madagascar have been struggling to cope with a surge of Covid-19 cases, while the president has been promoting an unproven product he says can cure the disease despite the World Health Organization (WHO) warning against using untested remedies.

Cases have quadrupled in the past month in the Indian Ocean island, with more than 13,000 infections and 162 deaths from coronavirus, which has spread to all but one of its 22 regions.

Despite the spike, President Andry Rajoelina stands by the herbal concoction called Covid-Organics, which was launched to great fanfare in April.

"Just because we have condoms, does that mean we shouldn't be careful about Aids or that Aids is over? It's the same thing," says the president's communications director Rinah Rakotomanga.

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Africa reported its millionth official COVID-19 case last week, it seems to have weathered the pandemic relatively well so far, with fewer than one confirmed case for every thousand people @ScienceMagazine

After testing more than 3000 blood donors, Uyoga and colleagues estimated in a preprint last month that one in 20 Kenyans aged 15 to 64—or 1.6 million people—has antibodies to SARS-CoV-2, an indication of past infection. 

That would put Kenya on a par with Spain in mid-May when that country was descending from its coronavirus peak and had 27,000 official COVID-19 deaths. 

Kenya’s official toll stood at 100 when the study ended. And Kenya’s hospitals are not reporting huge numbers of people with COVID-19 symptoms.

Other antibody studies in Africa have yielded similarly surprising findings. 

From a survey of 500 asymptomatic health care workers in Blantyre, Malawi, immunologist Kondwani Jambo of the Malawi–Liverpool Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Programme and colleagues concluded that up to 12.3% of them had been exposed to the coronavirus. 

Based on those findings and mortality ratios for COVID-19 elsewhere, they estimated that the reported number of deaths in Blantyre at the time, 17, was eight times lower than expected.

Scientists who surveyed about 10,000 people in the northeastern cities of Nampula and Pemba in Mozambique found antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in 3% to 10% of participants, depending on their occupation; market vendors had the highest rates, followed by health workers. 

Yet in Nampula, a city of approximately 750,000, a mere 300 infections had been confirmed at the time. Mozambique only has 16 confirmed COVID-19 deaths. 

Yap Boum, a microbiologist and epidemiologist with Epicentre Africa, the research and training arm of Doctors Without Borders, says he found a high prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in people from Cameroon as well, a result that remains unpublished.

So what explains the huge gap between antibody data on the one hand and the official case and death counts on the other? 

Part of the reason may be that Africa misses many more cases than other parts of the world because it has far less testing capacity. Kenya tests about one in every 10,000 inhabitants daily for active SARS-CoV-2 infections, one-tenth of the rate in Spain or Canada. 

Nigeria, the continent’s most populous nation, tests one out of every 50,000 people per day. Even many people who die from COVID-19 may not get a proper diagnosis.

But in that case, you would still expect an overall rise in mortality, which Kenya has not seen, says pathologist Anne Barasa of the University of Nairobi who did not participate in the country’s coronavirus antibody study. 

(In South Africa, by contrast, the number of excess natural deaths reported between 6 May and 28 July exceeded its official COVID-19 death toll by a factor of four to one.) 

Uyoga cautions that the pandemic has hamstrung Kenya’s mortality surveillance system, however, as fieldworkers have been unable to move around.

Marina Pollán of the Carlos III Health Institute in Madrid, who led Spain’s antibody survey, says Africa’s youthfulness may protect it. Spain’s median age is 45; in Kenya and Malawi, it’s 20 and 18, respectively. 

Young people around the world are far less likely to get severely ill or die from the virus. And the population in Kenya’s cities, where the pandemic first took hold, skews even younger than the country as a whole, says Thumbi Mwangi, an epidemiologist at the University of Nairobi. 

The number of severe and fatal cases “may go higher when the disease has moved to the rural areas where we have populations with advanced age,” he says.

Jambo is exploring the hypothesis that Africans have had more exposure to other coronaviruses that cause little more than colds in humans, which may provide some defense against COVID-19. 

Another possibility is that regular exposure to malaria or other infectious diseases could prime the immune system to fight new pathogens, including SARS-CoV-2, Boum adds.

 Barasa, on the other hand, suspects genetic factors protect the Kenyan population from severe disease.

It’s not at all clear whether antibodies actually confer immunity, and if so, how long it lasts, Gray notes—in which case, she asks, “What do these numbers really tell us?”

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COVID-19 in Africa: Dampening the storm? @ScienceMagazine

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has spread rapidly and extensively to most countries in the world, resulting in considerable mortality in Europe and the United States, as well as in numerous upper-middle-income countries in South America and Asia. Experts predicted millions of COVID-19 deaths in Africa because many countries in the continent rank poorly on the United Nations Development Programme's Human Development Index. However, more than 4 months after the first cases in Africa were detected, prevalence and mortality are still low. It remains unclear if Africa is really spared from substantial cases and deaths. However, differences between Africa and the most affected countries in reliable reporting and death registration, lockdown stringency, demography, sociocultural aspects, environmental exposures, genetics, and the immune system could help to explain the experience of COVID-19 in Africa.

Population densities are very high in most African capital cities such as Dakar (12,617 persons/km2), Abidjan (11,155 persons/km2), or Lagos (13,909 persons/km2), whereas New York City has 7101 persons/km2

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They fancied themselves free, wrote Camus, ―and no one will ever be free so long as there are pestilences. #COVID19

―In this respect, our townsfolk were like everybody else, wrapped up in themselves; in other words, they were humanists: they disbelieved in pestilences.

A pestilence isn't a thing made to man's measure; therefore we tell ourselves that pestilence is a mere bogy of the mind, a bad dream that will pass away.

But it doesn't always pass away and, from one bad dream to another, it is men who pass away

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“All the world’s a stage”

All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms;
And then the whining school-boy, with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress’ eyebrow. Then a soldier,
Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then the justice,
In fair round belly with good capon lin’d,
With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern instances;
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slipper’d pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side;
His youthful hose, well sav’d, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion;
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

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by Aly Khan Satchu (www.rich.co.ke)
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August 2020

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