Market News July 1

By Nick Spano

This week after passing the
Fed’s stress tests, banks are
boosting quarterly dividends
and announcing stock
buybacks.

Morgan Stanley led the
way, doubling its dividends
to $0.70. The bank also
announced an ambitious
$12B buyback program.
Goldman Sachs boosted
dividends by 60% to $2.
Wells Fargo doubled
dividends to $0.20, halfway
back to its pre-pandemic
dividend of $0.51.

Banks were not the only
industry to make waves as
United Airlines is set to log
the biggest airplane order of
all time. In preparation for
the post-COVID travel spree,
United’s spending $35B on
270 new planes from Boeing
and Airbus.

The order includes 200
Boeing 737 Max’s and 70
A321neo’s. The company has
500 planes earmarked for
delivery between now and
2027, replacing over 300
aircraft in United’s current
fleet.

The airline expects
purchases to boost domestic
capacity by 30%. United also
announced today that the
company hopes to add 25,000
union jobs by 2026. United plans to grow its workforce
by 36% just months after
accepting $54B in
government aid.

Crypto exchange Binance
is picking up more flack from
leading economies, just
weeks after the United States
announced it would
investigate the exchange.
This time, it’s the U.K., and
they are banning Binance
entirely.

So why are they being
banned? If you guessed
“concerns about involvement
in money laundering and
fraud” then you’re spot on.
The U.K’s market regulator,
the FCA, warned in early
June that many businesses
were not meeting money
laundering regulations.

Elon Musk’s satellite
network Starlink is on track
to beam broadband internet
everywhere in the world
except the polar regions by
August.

Space Exploration
Technologies has launched
more than 1,500 satellites so
far and has Starlink operations
in about a dozen countries,
Musk said during a
presentation at the Mobile
World Congress conference
on Tuesday.

The service, which has more than 69,000 active
users, may reach half a
million in the next 12 months,
he said. SpaceX aims to offer
broadband to as much as 5%
of the world’s population
where conventional fiber and
wireless networks can’t
reach.

The company is set to
launch a new version of
Starlink’s satellites next year
that will have inter-satellite
laser links to help them cover
polar regions. Its engineers
are developing a new ground
terminal to stem losses: the
dishes customers are
currently installing on
rooftops cost more than
$1,000 to make but only
retail for half that, he said.

In 2012, two scientists
discovered a method for
genome editing called
CRISPR-Cas9. CRISPR gene
editing is a natural tool which
allows scientists to edit,
delete, and generate new
strands of DNA.

Last year, less than a
decade after its discovery, the
two scientists who discovered
it were awarded a Nobel
Prize; a sign of just how
consequential it is. However,
both scientists (and some
others) have been bringing
their gene revolution to markets for far longer.

This weekend, Doudna’s
Intellia Therapeutics
announced that it had used
CRISPR to edit genes inside the body (in-vivo). The six-
person study used CRISPR therapy to deactivate a
mutated gene that causes
liver cells to produce
misfolded proteins. In the
study, the higher-dose arm
saw an 80-96% drop in levels
of the misfolded protein.

Lastly, in comical news, if
you pay an emotional labor
fee, Postdates will pick up
and deliver any stuff you left
at your ex’s place. Postdates
looks like the actual
Postmates website, you can
select a type of relationship
(“casually dated,” “lived
together,” “one night stand,”
etc.) like it’s a type of
restaurant. Then, you can
choose from preset items to
retrieve (concert tickets if
you were friend-zoned,
family heirlooms if you were
divorced) or add a custom
item. Delivery starts at $25 in
LA and $30 in NY, along
with an additional emotional
labor fee of $3.99. Yes, you
can actually use this service
if you’re in one of these two
cities, but Postdates isn’t here
to stay; it’s a pop-up business.

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