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    Daily Digest 1/7 – US Treasury to Allow Blockchains, Stablecoins for Bank Payments, Michelin scrapping 2,300 jobs

    by Daily Digest

    Thursday, January 7, 2021, 7:42 AM

Economy

US Treasury to Allow Blockchains, Stablecoins for Bank Payments

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the bureau of the US Treasury Department charged with regulating banks, has stated that banks may use stablecoins and blockchains for payments.

In an interpretive letter issued today, the OCC clarified that, as long as it complies with the law and sound banking practices, “a national bank or federal savings association may validate, store, and record payments transaactions by serving as a node on an INVN [independent node verification network]. Likewise, a bank may use INVNs and related stablecoins to carry out other permissible payment activities.”

Michelin scrapping 2,300 jobs over next three years

French tire maker Michelin said on Wednesday it would cut up to 2,300 jobs over three years as part of a new simplification and competitiveness plan in France, adding this would involve neither layoffs nor plant closures.

The COVID-19 pandemic has hammered the auto industry, which was already struggling with the shift to electric vehicles from diesel and gasoline cars.

Cheap hair lice drug may cut risk of COVID-19 death by 80 percent: study

A simple treatment for COVID-19 could be cheaper than 20 bucks — and familiar to most grade school nurses.

Head lice drug ivermectin is being explored as a potential treatment for the coronavirus following a promising new study that showed an 80% reduction in hospitalized COVID-19 patient deaths.

Exploding Debt Levels Mean Stocks Can’t Go ‘To the Moon’ Forever

Peter Cecchini, founder and CEO of AlphaOmega Advisors, joins the latest “What Goes Up” podcast to discuss the crazy year that was 2020 in markets, and to give his outlook for what’s to come. Topics include efficacy of the Federal Reserve, a boom in retail investor trading and zombie companies.

Some highlights of the conversation:“Some of the earnings estimates that I’m seeing, as you said, the consensus is just below $170, are going to require multiples that just don’t make a lot of sense to me within the context of the fact that rates can’t go any lower. So if we’re looking for multiple expansion to continue to drive the rally, I don’t think we’re going to get that because the Fed’s efficacy is limited, right?

Georgia Senate runoff to determine outlook for Biden business agenda

The outcome of Georgia’s Senate runoff election on Tuesday will play a pivotal role in shaping the federal government’s approach over the next two years to business policy on everything from post-pandemic recovery efforts to health care and taxes.

Republicans David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler, both incumbents, have presented themselves as a firewall against socialism, warning voters that Democrats Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock would side with the progressive wing of the Democratic Party on key issues. Meanwhile, the Democratic candidates have accused their GOP opponents of a botched response to the coronavirus pandemic in which they prioritized their own financial interests over the needs of Georgians.

Ultra-Low Interest Rates Are Here to Stay: 2021 Central Bank Guide

Central banks are set to spend 2021 maintaining their ultra-easy monetary policies even with the global economy expected to accelerate away from last year’s coronavirus-inflicted recession.

In Bloomberg’s quarterly review of monetary policy that covers 90% of the world economy, no major western central bank is expected to hike interest rates this year.

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