Stocks Drop on Stimulus Deadlock as Banks Tumble: Markets Wrap

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(Bloomberg) — Stocks fell on speculation that recent gains have outpaced prospects for a quick end to the stalemate over fresh stimulus. Treasuries and the dollar climbed.



A pedestrian wearing a protective face mask is reflected in an electronic stock board outside a securities firm in Tokyo, Japan, on Thursday, Sept. 17, 2020. Japanese stocks were set for their fourth straight weekly gain, the longest winning streak since November, as investors moved back in following this week’s central bank rate decisions at home and in the U.S.


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A pedestrian wearing a protective face mask is reflected in an electronic stock board outside a securities firm in Tokyo, Japan, on Thursday, Sept. 17, 2020. Japanese stocks were set for their fourth straight weekly gain, the longest winning streak since November, as investors moved back in following this week’s central bank rate decisions at home and in the U.S.

Banks led losses in the S&P 500, with JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Citigroup Inc. sinking as investors worried that third-quarter earnings signaled just a pause in pain from soured loans. Eli Lilly & Co. tumbled after putting its government-sponsored antibody test on hold due to potential safety concerns, hours after Johnson & Johnson paused its Covid-19 vaccine trial. Tech shares outperformed as Amazon.com Inc.’s Prime Day sale kicked off. Apple Inc. unveiled its iPhone 12 line with 5G speeds, but the shares dropped, giving up part of Monday’s surge.

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Read: Profit Guidance Suggests S&P 500 Firms Overstated Lockdown Woes

Prospects for U.S. fiscal stimulus before Election Day dimmed on Tuesday, with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi demanding the Trump administration revamp its latest offer and Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell pushing a smaller-scale strategy that she quickly rejected. His proposal to vote next week on just one provision appeared to stoke opposition even from President Donald Trump, who tweeted “Go big or go home!!”

“It’s been a rollercoaster ride in terms of communication from both sides,” said Mark Heppenstall, chief investment officer at Penn Mutual Asset Management. “There are still going to be significant pockets of stress in the economy,” and a fiscal package could help bridge the gap

Check Out These Negan And Zombie Magic The Gathering Cards From Upcoming Secret Lair Drop

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If you need more zombies in your life, then you’re probably pretty excited about Magic: The Gathering’s upcoming Secret Lair drop, which is a collaboration with AMC’s The Walking Dead. Aside from the Negan and Treasure token cards, GameSpot has yet another reveal for the set, which we Tweeted out on September 30. Check it out below.

The Walking Dead Secret Lair drop will feature brand-new cards for MTG, and will be available for pre-order during a limited window between October 4 and 12–starting at 11:30 PM ET on October 4. One of the new cards is none other than Negan, the infamous villain from the series who has no problem bashing in heads with a baseball bat, tat’s played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan on the show. Check out the card below.

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Negan is a 4/3 Legendary Creature with a very fitting ability. When the card is put onto the battlefield, you and a target player each pick a creature that player controls, and then that creature–or creatures–is sacrificed, and you get a Treasure token. That Treasure Token gives you one colorless mana when you tap then sacrifice it.

“The game design team really nailed expressing these rich characters with just a few numbers and a couple lines of rules text,” Wizards product architect Mark Heggen told GameSpot. “Negan is one of my favorite examples; when he hits the battlefield he has a unique rule that forces one of your opponents to play this sick mind game where they have to choose and sacrifice one of their own creatures, but you can also get into their head and trick them into sacrificing more than they had to! It’s a fun moment in the game, and it feels exactly like something the real Negan would do.”

Putting The Walking Dead characters

Study finds 57% drop in reproduction when exposed to both threats — ScienceDaily

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The loss of flowering plants and the widespread use of pesticides could be a double punch to wild bee populations. In a new study, researchers at the University of California, Davis, found that the combined threats reduced blue orchard bee reproduction by 57 percent and resulted in fewer female offspring. The study was published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

“Just like humans, bees don’t face one single stress or threat,” said lead author Clara Stuligross, a Ph.D. candidate in ecology at UC Davis. “Understanding how multiple stressors interplay is really important, especially for bee populations in agricultural systems, where wild bees are commonly exposed to pesticides and food can be scarce.”

The study found that pesticide exposure had the greatest impact on nesting activity and the number of offspring the bees produced. Pesticide exposure reduced bee reproduction 1.75 times more than limiting their food.

IN FIELD EXPERIMENT

The team conducted their research by exposing the blue orchard bee to the neonicotinoid insecticide imidacloprid, the most widely used neonicotinoid in the United States. It’s also among the most frequently applied insecticides in California.

Nesting female bees were set up in large flight cages containing wildflowers at high or low densities treated with and without the insecticide. The insecticide was applied based on label instructions. Bees can be exposed to insecticides by consuming pollen and nectar from the treated flowers. Similar research has been conducted on honeybees in labs, but there has been no comparable research on wild bees in field or semi-field conditions.

FEWER FEMALES, FEWER BEES IN THE FUTURE

The two main factors that affect bee reproduction are the probability that females will nest and the total number of offspring they have. The research found that pesticide-exposed and resource-deprived female bees delayed the onset of

Caltech, other colleges drop SAT and ACT from admissions decisions

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But Caltech won’t even consider those tests in the selection of its next two entering classes. It is in the vanguard of a small but growing movement to eliminate the ACT and SAT from admission decisions. The immense educational disruptions of the novel coronavirus pandemic, especially shortages of seats at testing centers, have fueled the development.

Others experimenting with this approach include the University of California at Berkeley and some other UC campuses, Reed College in Oregon, the California State University System and Washington State University. Catholic University, in D.C., said this year it will omit test scores in admissions from now on.

These schools are taking a more radical stance than the “test-optional” movement, which allows applicants to choose whether to send scores. Instead, these schools are declaring themselves “test-blind” or “test-free.”

Nikki Kahealani Chun, director of undergraduate admissions for Caltech, said the 2,200-student school in Pasadena has never focused as much on tests as its ultracompetitive reputation would suggest. She said Caltech has pondered the value of the SAT and ACT for years as it seeks to diversify a student body of about 940 undergraduates. Now it has announced a two-year moratorium on using the tests, enabling the school to assess whether the scores are worthwhile or even necessary.

“I know it won’t cripple the process” to remove the tests from deliberations, Chun said. The school scrutinizes high school transcripts, teacher recommendations, essays and student activities. Caltech’s goal, Chun said, is “seeing the scientist/researcher, the quantitative thinker, in the whole of their application.” Raw talent matters more than stellar scores. “Sometimes students don’t even recognize they have it,” she said.

Testing chaos this year underscores how much colleges and applicants nationwide have long relied on the ACT and SAT. Colleges pay the testing agencies for names and addresses

Bungie Confirms ‘Destiny 2’ Is Never Getting A New Engine So We Can Drop That Now

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In the wake of a big technical TWAB regarding Destiny 2 this past week, the good old question of the series getting a “new engine” has surfaced again.

Some are interpreting the recent comments about all the changes to the engine as a smokescreen for the fact that yes, Destiny is effectively getting a new engine. Or if not, they’re just preparing to replace the current engine with a new one down the road and these are just temporary patches.

Neither of these things are true. And in fact, Bungie has come out to say explicitly that no, Destiny is never getting a fully new engine.

MORE FROM FORBESUnderstanding Destiny 2’s Massive New Technical Changes For Beyond Light

This is directly from Chris Kosanovich, Engineering Manager at Bungie, who responded to the frequent engine question in a reddit AMA two full months ago, but no one seemed to register it at the time. But his comments have been surfaced again as this current engine debate rages:

“Regarding the engine, Aldridge may speak to this more but every engine I’ve ever used has strengths and weaknesses. I certainly would not classify the Destiny engine as ‘archaic’ and I certainly wouldn’t want to try to build Destiny in any other engine. Of course there are processes that are slow and we’re making improvements to address our tech debt. Not totally sure what you mean about a ‘new engine in future titles’ but we updated the engine from D1 to D2 and continue to update the engine during D2 development. We’ll never make a whole new engine and move destiny to it, but any future games that Bungie makes wouldn’t necessarily need to use the Destiny tech if it doesn’t make sense for that game.”