In today’s Recap, Marcello talks about the heartbreaking news of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict’s sudden escalation, which resulted in multiple attacks; Tesla’s decision to cut prices once more in an effort to boost sales; and the possibility of the beginning of a housing market collapse as a result of the US’s highest mortgage rates in almost 23 years.
Palestinian Islamist group Hamas took Israel by surprise on Saturday, with the biggest attack for decades, a sudden assault by gunmen who crossed into Israeli villages, killing at least 100 people & bringing hostages back into the Gaza Strip. Israel responded with massive air strikes deep inside the coastal enclave, killing scores & wounding 100’s of people & vowing unprecedented retaliation. Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said the assault that had begun in Gaza would spread to the Jerusalem & the West Bank.
U. S. Labor Department on Friday: Job growth was heftier than expected in September, a sign that the U.S. economy is still strong, despite higher interest rates, labor strife & dysfunction in Washington. Non-farm payrolls increased by 336K for the month, better than the consensus estimate for 170K & more than 100K higher than the previous month. The unemployment rate was 3.8%, compared to the forecast for 3.7%. The payrolls increase was the best monthly number since January.
After an unbroken string of 9 session losses, since the Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged on Sept. 20 & after the U.S. payrolls report drove the spot price down to a fresh 7-month low of $1810.46, gold finally had its 1st positive close in 2 weeks on Friday. It was the longest daily losing streak in 7 years, with prices hovering near their lowest levels since March.
Shares of U.S. based Rivian Automotive plunged -22.88% on Thursday at $18.27, its largest percentage drop on record, after the electric vehicle maker announced plans to raise $1.5B in convertible notes & as it offered preliminary Q3 revenue guidance roughly in line with analyst expectations. Rivian said it anticipates revenue to range between $1.29B & $1.33B, versus the $1.3B forecast by analysts. Shares are down -15.49% in the past 3 months, -0.87% in 2023 & -50.30% y/y, with a market cap of $22.47B.
European Union leaders will discuss how to reform the 27-nation bloc to take in new members at a summit in Granada, Spain on Oct. 5-6, launching a long process to prepare the E.U. for another enlargement by a tentative deadline of 2030. The countries now slated for membership: Albania, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Moldova, Serbia, Ukraine, Bosnia-Herzegovina, with the possibility of Georgia & Kosovo as well.
Meta Platforms, the parent firm of Facebook & sunglasses maker, Ray-Ban, have partnered to create a new & improved pair of AI-powered sunglasses that can record & make calls. Meta claims the camera built into the next-generation glasses can snap photos or record 1080p video. Metareports that the Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses are designed wi/improved audio. Meta AI, an integrated artificial intelligence assistant has been built into the smart glasses as well, to provide hands-free help. The starting price for the new Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses is $299.
A family in Norway unearthed more than they were expecting when they used a metal detector to search their yard for a lost earring. Instead of finding the modern jewelry, they detected a signal beneath a large tree behind their house. And when they dug down, they discovered relics from a Viking burial, 2 bronze ornaments that experts say were once covered in gold. The artifacts may be the first Viking Age (A.D. 793 to 1066) finds on the island of Jomfruland, thus confirming that people lived there at that time.
Oil prices rose on Friday, but posted their steepest weekly losses since March; Russia’s government on Friday said it had withdrawn a ban on diesel exports delivered to sea ports via pipelines, removing a large chunk of restrictions it put in place last month; Long-term U.S. mortgage rates continued to move up this week, reaching the highest level in a generation once again.