Monday morning briefing: Litecoin, meet gravity

It appears that every company engaged in the streaming business is looking for ways to increase content, and spending billions to do so. Amazon agreed to purchase MGM Studios for US$8.45 billion. This will give Amazon access to MGM’s catalogue of films and TV shows. Amazon, which steams shows and movies through Amazon Prime, is hoping the deal will help the company compete against other streaming behemoths like Netflix and Disney, which both have massive pipelines of in-house content.

Economic/industry news

Core PCE prices rise 3.1% year-over-year: A key U.S. inflation gauge rose 3.1% year over year, higher than expected

Second estimate confirms sharp growth in first quarter GDP: U.S. GDP expanded at unrevised 6.4% rate in first quarter

How supply chain issues negatively impact consumers: Supply chain shortages are blocking multiple industries. Here’s what it means for you

The economic recovery in emerging markets could lag, stalling the global recovery: IMF head warns of ‘ricochet impact’ of uneven global recovery

The number of cryptocurrencies rises: The number of cryptocurrencies almost doubled since 2019 and hit over 5,300

Reasons for hope

The vaccine rollout in Canada is progressing: Half of all Canadians have had one COVID-19 shot; full reopening still months off

Mild symptoms of COVID-19 could produce antibodies, which may give long-term immunity: Good news: Mild COVID-19 induces lasting antibody protection

Vaccines, reopenings and social gatherings may make it a fun summer for backyard barbeques: Grill makers are ready for a busy summer of maskless backyard BBQs

Adapting your business

Statistics Canada predicts 25% remote work hours post pandemic: Remote work habits are likely to outlast the pandemic in Canada

The opportunities and challenges for investment professionals in a hybrid work model: How remote work is changing the industry and advisors

Bringing private markets to retail clients: This new fund structure helps retail clients access private markets

Maintaining high standards helped this hospitality business thrive during pandemic: How this hospitality business not only survived, but thrived during the pandemic

How different generations define wealth: What ‘wealth’ really means to 4 different generations

Chart of the week: Litecoin, meet gravity

Another cryptocurrency that has come under pressure in recent weeks has been Litecoin. Considered the silver to Bitcoin’s gold, Litecoin was launched in 2011 and is quite similar to Bitcoin, but with some key differences. For example, Litecoin can confirm transactions faster than Bitcoin and has lower fees. Litecoin is the official cryptocurrency of the Miami Dolphins NFL team. And, according to BeInCrypto, over 2,000 online vendors already accept Litecoin as payment. The price of Litecoin rose 183% from the end of 2020 to its high on May 7, 2021. But these gains have pared back in recent weeks along with other digital currencies. Given its age and ability to remain within the top ranks of cryptocurrencies, some believe Litecoin has staying power. Let us know what you think.
Used with permission of Bloomberg Finance L.P.

News and notes (U.S.)

Strong performance pushes hedge fund assets to new record: Hedge funds surpass $4 trillion in assets

More hedge funds looking at cryptocurrencies: Hedge funds look to increase crypto exposure

Going green: Private equity has been slow to go green, but that may be changing

The ongoing interest in sports from PE firms: On the podcast: Private equity’s sports play

Canadian Bitcoin ETFs may prove useful for Bitcoin applications in the U.S.: Bitcoin ETF backers see Canada fund’s slump as reason to believe

News and notes (Canada)

Regulator focuses on unregulated crypto trading: OSC begins crypto crackdown

Labour productivity rising: Labour productivity leaped 3.8% in the last quarter of 2020

Younger investors looking to manage investments on their own: Survey finds 10% of Canadians plan to leave their advisor

SPAC to take Canadian steelmaker public: Steelmaker Algoma Steel to go public in SPAC deal

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