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(COVID-19 remains a global crisis and we realize that many people need to keep up with COVID-19 developments, particularly since we are moving into the more critical stage ("restart economy"), so feel free to share our commentary to anyone who has interest.)

It was a relatively quiet final 2020 week of pre-New Year’s Eve holiday trading, but the Standard & Poor’s 500 index still managed about a 1 % rise to about 3738. Still, all investor eyes are on Washington, D.C. where the Senate is holding up another round of $2,000 coronavirus relief checks. It’s unclear when this will be resolved. (For more, see page 11.)

The House had passed, by unanimous consent, this larger payment, but the Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell wants to take up three issues simultaneously: (i) stimulus checks, (ii) election fraud and (iii) section 230 protecting tech companies from liability. Congress is running against the clock as the year ends and a recess approaches.

Trends in COVID-19 are still largely improving with the hotspots remaining along the coastlines and the Northeast (winter). Positivity rates are holding flat, but the true trend case numbers remain hard to discern given holiday closures. In fact, Texas reported a +10,000 increase in cases (see Point #2), but this is ...

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