The Verge: Donald Trump’s new social media SPAC, explained

The Verge: Donald Trump’s new social media SPAC, explained. “Trump announced Wednesday night that he has a new company called Trump Media & Technology Group (TMTG) and that he would be merging this new company with a SPAC called Digital World Acquisition Company (DWAC). If completed, the deal would turn Trump’s new media company into one that’s publicly traded on the Nasdaq. And it would give TMTG enough money to get a new Twitter clone off the ground called ‘Truth.’ The surprise deal is already turning DWAC into a meme stock, and it raises a fair number of questions.” I promise I will not let this particular topic take over the newsletter, but I will always have time for thorough, cogent explanations of financial/investment issues.

National Bureau of Economic Research: Banking-Crisis Interventions, 1257-2019

National Bureau of Economic Research: Banking-Crisis Interventions, 1257-2019. “We present a new database of banking-crisis interventions since the 13th century. The database includes 1886 interventions in 20 categories across 138 countries, covering interventions during all of the crises identified in the main banking-crisis chronologies, while also cataloguing a large number of interventions outside of those crises. The data show a gradual shift over the past centuries from the traditional interventions of a lender-of-last-resort, suspensions of convertibility, and bank holidays, towards a much more prominent role for capital injections and sweeping guarantees of bank liabilities.” There’s a prominent link to download a PDF of the paper, but you’ll need to scroll down a little further and look for “Associated Links” to download the dataset.

Brookings Institution: The external wealth of nations database

Brookings Institution: The external wealth of nations database. “For the past several years, Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, now a senior fellow in the Hutchins Center at Brookings, and Philip Lane, now chief economist of the European Central Bank, have been curating a database on external financial assets and liabilities for more than 200 countries that stretches back to 1970—the External Wealth of Nations. The Hutchins Center is now making the entire dataset [Excel download] widely available online and will update it regularly.”

Penn State News: Penn State offers new online certificate in financial engineering

Penn State News: Penn State offers new online certificate in financial engineering. “As more companies continue to rely on mass data sets to solve critical financial issues and guide important business decisions, professionals who can analyze complex data to support business ventures will be more in demand. Those interested in increasing their knowledge of quantitative data analysis and management to gain an edge in this competitive field can now do so through a new online credential from Penn State.”

Wall Street Journal: The Social-Media Stars Who Move Markets

Wall Street Journal: The Social-Media Stars Who Move Markets. “Total users at the six top online brokerages, which are used mainly by individual investors, topped 100 million in 2021. At Robinhood Financial LLC, the investing app popular among younger investors, accounts have grown explosively, from 7.2 million in March of 2020 to 18 million a year later, according to company financial filings. Along with the rise of commission-free online trading has come demand for advice at the lowest price in the most accessible place: free, and online. Now, a new generation of Jim Cramers has risen up on social media with massive followings as guides to these market newbies.”

Japan News: Japanese firms help falsify Google reviews to boost medical clinic ratings

Japan News: Japanese firms help falsify Google reviews to boost medical clinic ratings . “When you look for a store or facility on Google’s search engine, a review section is displayed along with a map. Reviews on the internet not only influence people’s choice of products, but also where they go. The existence of several specialized companies that erase all the low ratings posted and replace them with high ratings has been uncovered by The Yomiuri Shimbun. These companies are said to target local medical clinics, where such ratings can make a big difference, to use their services.”

Motley Fool: These Free Tools Will Make Anyone a Better Investor

Motley Fool: These Free Tools Will Make Anyone a Better Investor. “In this episode of Industry Focus: Tech, we take a break from talking about specific companies to loop listeners in on our go-to free resources for information on companies. We give a rundown of our favorite primary and secondary resources for information and spend some time talking about the decision that leveled the playing field for the average investor.” Video podcast with captions AND a complete transcript.

One-stop source for inflation: Introducing a new database (Vox EU)

Vox EU: One-stop source for inflation: Introducing a new database. “Understanding the dynamics of inflation requires a comprehensive database that covers a large number of countries over a long period. This column introduces a new global database of inflation that has a significantly larger coverage than other databases as it includes multiple measures of inflation for up to 196 countries over 1970-2021. The database can be used in a variety of contexts.”

Wired: How to Nab Deals With Your Student Email Address

Wired: How to Nab Deals With Your Student Email Address. “COLLEGE ISN’T CHEAP, and we’re not just talking about tuition. Between the cost of books, living expenses, food, and going out, your budget is probably pretty tight. Good news, though: All you need is your school-provided .edu email address to take advantage of plenty of sweet student discounts. We hunted down the best deals and discounts for students. Use all that extra cash to treat yourself to something nice, like beer.”

Phys .org: Large number of Americans reported financial anxiety and stress even before the pandemic

Phys .org: Large number of Americans reported financial anxiety and stress even before the pandemic. “A substantial number of adults in the United States between the ages of 21 and 62 felt anxiety and stress about their personal finances well before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new report published today. Researchers found that financial stress and anxiety are highly linked to low levels of financial literacy, problematic financial behaviors and decreased financial security.”

Bloomberg: Using Artificial Intelligence to Sniff Out Corporate Greenwashers

Bloomberg: Using Artificial Intelligence to Sniff Out Corporate Greenwashers. “Barely a day goes by without a company talking up their green credentials–how they’re aligning themselves with global climate goals, cutting waste and upping their recycling. With all this corporate happy-talk about saving the planet on the rise, so are concerns about greenwashing. Investors and regulators are increasingly sounding the alarm about companies that exaggerate or misrepresent their environmental bona fides. That’s what prompted academics at University College Dublin to develop algorithms to help the financial services sector detect and quantify greenwashing.”

Charities hoarded cash and failed to address crises during COVID: Report (Cochrane Times-Post)

Cochrane Times-Post: Charities hoarded cash and failed to address crises during COVID: Report. “Canadian charities responded to the pandemic by hoarding cash and relying on government support, and most failed to pivot to address crises caused by COVID-19 and economic measures taken to control the spread of the virus, according to a comprehensive report by The Veritas Foundation.”