43: The beautiful boys of bitcoin

By DONUTS DONUTS

By DONUTS

It’s jobs number Friday.

And it was a good number, 35,000 more than the 200,000 estimate, bringing unemployment down to 4.7%.

Not too shabby and will be good fodder for the Fed’s meeting next week where they will continue cajoling each other to ramp up rates in a way we haven’t seen in quite some time.

But the main driver or market conversation this week is probably oil.

Which makes sense if you caught a bit we shared in STUFF the other day, that we don’t really understand inflation—where stuff like central bank printing has less of an impact than, say, oil/commodity prices.

Reports the WSJ:

Oil prices steadied on Friday above a three-month low, stabilizing after falling over 4% on Wednesday and another 2% on Thursday.

Brent crude, the global oil benchmark, rose 0.2% to $52.27 a barrel on London’s ICE Futures exchange. Prices fell as low as $51.50 on Thursday, the lowest level since Nov. 30. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate futures were trading up 0.3% at $49.44 a barrel.

But “there are signs that another wave of volatility from the oil market could spill over into stocks, bonds and other markets,” write Timothy Puko, Ben Eisen and Erin Ailworth.

Energy-company stocks have been among the market’s worst performers, falling 2.5% on the S&P 500 and another 1% on Thursday.

Some analysts say that this week’s declines “could mark the beginning of a larger selloff if more evidence emerges that the global supply glut isn’t shrinking as fast as the market is anticipating,” the Journal reports.

Funny, because it was not long ago, January in fact when everyone was hopping on the oil train.

As our man Peter Zhang assessed at the time:

“prolly means it’s gonna go down.”

And as Mr.-you-should-dropout-of-college-because-college-is-for-newbz noted this week, that Peter Thiel dude:

“What’s very striking is that on some level I think fracking represents a bigger economic form of progress for our society as a whole than the innovation in Silicon Valley.”

But with that point, he is probably more referring to Tinder Select rather than Elon Musk’s plans to dig a bunch of tunnels under LA.

In other oil news, now that Snap’s out of the way, the next IPO everyone is talking about is Saudi Aramco.

The last emperor

It hasn’t been the best year for women in prominent leadership positions this last year (and there are not too many of them as it is)—which can be explained in no other way than coincidence.

Brazil is dealing with some heavy stuff at the moment, economically speaking, and impeached its president, Dilma Rousseff, along the way.

Soon after, Hillary walked in front of the Trump train.

Now South Korea, for the first time, has impeached one of its presidents, also its first female president.

And for Korea, culturally, politically, it’s a big deal.

As our resident Korea expert Sammy explained for me, it’s the end of a dynasty:

Her crimes were very obvious.

She was the daughter of the dictator who really put Korea’s economy on the map, pretty much the guy who planted the seeds for the Jaebulls.

In South Korea, the Jaebulls are the dynastic families that control the government and the economy, many of whom are known by the multinational conglomerates they own, like Samsung for instance.

Yeah, she grew up in the Blue House (the Korean White House). The old timers made her president and the young guns kicked her out. So there are some good vibes. The citizens feel empowered at the moment, and you might say for the first time in modern history. Korea needed that because the country never earned democracy. It was sort of given. So they never had the same sense of keeping or fighting for their rights like they do here or in Western Europe.

Medicinal mushrooms

It’s always beneficial when we examine stuff from a more scientific and non-judgemental perspective and we have been applying that perspective more and more recently when it comes to stuff like psychedelics in terms of how they might beneficial for this terrible suffering we call the human condition.

But that can be difficult in the context of illegal substances. But here’s a cool Rolling Stone feature on how some doctors are grappling with that given the potential upside of their research:

Because Dr. X’s hallmark treatment – an MDMA session or two, then further journeys with psilocybin mushrooms if called for – is, absolutely, illegal. MDMA is a Schedule I controlled substance. Psilocybin is as well. Exposure could get his medical license suspended, if not revoked, along with his parental rights, or freedom. “This should be a part of health care, and is a true part of health care,” he says in his defense. The oversimplified concept behind MDMA therapy, which causes intense neurotransmitter activity including the release of adrenaline and serotonin (believed to produce positive mood), is that it tamps down fear, allowing people to interact with – and deal with – parts of their psyche they otherwise can’t. Psychedelics in general are thought to bring an observational part of the ego online to allow a new perspective on one’s self and one’s memories, potentially leading to deep understanding and healing.

Also, another trend we’re falling here at DONUTS is microdosing, so if you have any thoughts or stories on that, please let us know!

Beautiful Bitcoin boys

I have been told by a friend at a big time prop shop that there are some prominent trader type people who feel like a Bitcoin ETF would be a very big deal for Bitcoin, simply because it would make it so much easier for established players to get in the game.

But mainly, it should be pretty obvious why this is such a big deal.

There are obviously many regulatory and logistical hurdles in order to get there, but the Winklevoss twins have been fighting this very good fight for quite some time. And we might find out very soon about the fruits of those labors.

Thankfully, they are very good looking.

Stuff

People generally are not a fan of annual performance reviews. So maybe the solution to that is… daily performance reviews?

TIL: Zimbabwe has… 95% unemployment.

We’ve got more NASA data about TRAPPIST-1, which is exciting in the context of our search for signs of life out there in the vast abyss of a universe we exist in.

I told a girl that I wasn’t planning on buying my future fiance a diamond ring. She was not pleased. But according to the Economist, I might be on the right side of history.

Feel bad for Japan: trolled by radioactive boars.

At DONUTS, we’re big fans of kewl visual representations of stuff. So we’re very excited about this student at Brown teaching math better.

Soda is out. Water is in.

Wells Fargo commences epic comeback.

In the age of strong powerful leaders, Modi takes center stage.

Selling wilderness vibes to BK hipsters.

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DONUTS

Delightfully indulgent.

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