Week InReview
Friday | May 1, 2020
#fomo no more
The “fear of missing out” used to cause pervasive dread. But in a socially altered time, there’s an unlikely use for it. Maybe FOMO isn’t dead. It just feels better now.

— The Wall Street Journal Magazine
in case you missed it...
Fed Chair Jerome Powell   said Covid-19 has brought the U.S. economy to an “abrupt halt,” and that the central bank is uncertain how long the recession will last. “Economic activity will likely drop at an unprecedented rate in the second quarter,” he said. The Federal Open Market Committee said in a unanimous statement that it “will use its tools and act as appropriate to support the economy.” (Bloomberg Economics | Apr 29) see also U.S. economy shrinks at 4.8% pace, signaling start of recession (Bloomberg Economics | Apr 29) and Is this a liquidity crisis or a solvency crisis? It matters to Fed. (The Wall Street Journal | Apr 30)

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac face strong headwinds from the mayhem Covid-19 has spread through the mortgage market, complicating the administration’s plans to free them from U.S. control anytime soon. (Bloomberg Business | Apr 29)

Market turbulence has calmed down since the mid-March extremes, but a couple of recent moves may bode particularly well for stocks. The Cboe Volatility Index, or VIX, closed below its second-month future on Monday for the first time since Feb. 21, going back to a more typical structure. (BNN Bloomberg - Canada | Apr 28)

The U.S. central bank hasn’t even started buying corporate bonds, yet perception of Fed backing helps risky firms borrow anew. The central bank spent more than a decade telling the public that it was unwavering in its resolve to force Wall Street to rebuild its capital buffers so it could lend both in good times and bad. Yet even after banks beefed up their reserves and cut back on risk-taking with their own funds, the financial system is yet again in need of extraordinary support. (Bloomberg Markets | Apr 28)

Investors are snapping up complex securities linked to some of the markets deemed most vulnerable to the Covid-19-driven economic slump, a sign that the yearslong reach for yield has survived the market shock. (The Wall Street Journal | Apr 27)
the cyber cafe
You are invited to follow our LinkedIn Cyber Security Council Showcase Page. 

Covid-19 tracking apps raise questions about bluetooth security
Bluetooth has emerged as the technology of choice for tracking the spread of the coronavirus. Bluetooth’s specifications are several thousand pages long, and that complexity can lead to mistakes by developers. Plus, enterprising hackers could scout their vicinity for many devices with Bluetooth turned on and try to launch remote cyberattacks. Aside from potential security risks, Bluetooth has other flaws.

U.S. cyber agency offers advice to critical infrastructure groups battling threats during pandemic
The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency issued a guide Monday for running operations centers that could be targeted by aggressive hackers during coronavirus lockdowns,  Security Magazine reports . Critical infrastructure sectors with employees working remotely might face difficulties in responding to cyberattacks, CISA said in its  guide . CISA suggestions include the following:
  • Prioritize testing for asymptomatic personnel by medical professionals
  • Develop a mechanism such as special badges or letters to allow for identification and free movement of mission-essential personnel when restrictions are in place
  • Authorize priority supply of sanitizing supplies and personal protective equipment
  • Empower non-medical professionals such as control-center managers to administer health questionnaires and temperature checks
Source: The Wall Street Journal
binge reading disorder
Why your pet is acting weird during quarantine, explained by animal behaviorists
Across the globe, as the quarantine period advised by public health experts to fight the spread of  Covid-19  st retches from weeks into nearly two months for some,   pet owners are reporting that their furry companions are leaving old habits in the dust. Some pets are growing clingy. Others are pouncing on exercise equipment,  gliding across countertops , or hiding in corners and shooting their owners concerned stares.
—  Vox

Tools to help you keep your distance as more people go outside
  • Strava, the activity-tracking app, can help you find alternative routes for running, walking and riding
  • AllTrails identifies lightly treaded trails nearby.
  • Before your next grocery run, consult Google’s popular times to see if it’s crowded.
  • OpenTable recently launched online wait lists and reserved shopping times for grocery stores.
  • You can avoid grocery stores entirely by signing up for a community-supported agriculture program.
  • If you aren't sure what 6 feet looks like, bust out the Measure app on your iPhone or Android device.

The secret group of scientists and billionaires pushing a Manhattan Project for Covid-19
A dozen of America’s top scientists and a collection of billionaires and industry titans say they have the answer to the  Covid-19 pandemic . These scientists and their backers describe their work as a lockdown-era Manhattan Project, a nod to the World War II group of scientists who helped develop the atomic bomb. This time around, the scientists are marshaling brains and money to distill unorthodox ideas gleaned from around the world.
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