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COVID-19 UPDATE: Good^3. Daily tests rose 43% (vs 7D ago) yet cases basically flat = good. Positivity rate collapsed to 3.4% = good. Colleges 9% cases vs 15% in early Sept.= good

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STRATEGY: Is the labor market healthier than we realize?The 2020 Presidential Debates start Tuesday evening (first of three) and given how close this election looks, these debates will be very important.  And of course, on the top of the mind for voters are the same topics that matter in any year -- personal economic situation (jobs) and personal safety (COVID-19).  If we were to look at the stubbornly high US initial jobless claims (~1mm per week), one would get the sense the labor market recovery has stalled and correspondingly, so has the US economy.Goldman Sachs Economists, led by Jan Hatzius, published an interesting commentary yesterday.  They note that the high level of initial claims does not necessarily reflect the actual state of the labor market. - Rather, they suggest that elevated filing from the PUA (Pandemic Unemployment Assistance) is accounting for the high level of claims.- And the "loose eligibility" requirements bolstering these figures, along with backlogs, delayed filings and fraud.This is really interesting and if correct, suggests that the underlying labor situation is actually better than implied by the economic statistics.  This, in turn, has implications for th...

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