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Wall Street Brunch- January 15

Jan. 15, 2021 7:07 AM ET235 Comments
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Let's start with a little history, shall we?

Fiery hot molasses floods the streets of Boston on January 15, 1919, killing 21 people and injuring scores of others. The molasses burst from a huge tank at the United States Industrial Alcohol Company building in the heart of the city. The United States Industrial Alcohol building was located on Commercial Street near North End Park in Boston. It was close to lunch time on January 15 and Boston was experiencing some unseasonably warm weather as workers were loading freight-train cars within the large building. Next to the workers was a 58-foot-high tank filled with 2.5 million gallons of crude molasses. Suddenly, the bolts holding the bottom of the tank exploded, shooting out like bullets, and the hot molasses rushed out. An eight-foot-high wave of molasses swept away the freight cars and caved in the building’s doors and windows. The few workers in the building’s cellar had no chance as the liquid poured down and overwhelmed them. The huge quantity of molasses then flowed into the street outside. It literally knocked over the local firehouse and then pushed over the support beams for the elevated train line. The hot and sticky substance then drowned and burned five workers at the Public Works Department. In all, 21 people and dozens of horses were killed in the flood. It took weeks to clean the molasses from the streets of Boston. This disaster also produced an epic court battle, as more than 100 lawsuits were filed against the United States Industrial Alcohol Company. After a six-year-investigation that involved 3,000 witnesses and 45,000 pages of testimony, a special auditor finally determined that the company was at fault because the tank used had not been strong enough to hold the molasses. Nearly $1 million was paid in settlement of the claims.

The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919 killed 21 after 2 million gallon tank erupted

On January 15, 1967, the Green Bay Packers of the National Football League (NFL) smash the American Football League (AFL)’s Kansas City Chiefs, 35-10, in the first-ever AFL-NFL World Championship, later known as Super Bowl I, at Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles. Founded in 1960 as a rival to the NFL, the AFL was still finding its way in 1967, and the Packers had been heavily favored to win the game. As 60 million people tuned in to watch the action unfold on television, the Chiefs managed to keep it close for the first half, and by halftime Green Bay was ahead just 14-10. The Chiefs’ only touchdown came in the second quarter, on a seven-yard pass from quarterback Len Dawson to Curtis McClinton. The Packers, however, proceeded to break the game wide open, after safety Willie Wood intercepted a Dawson pass and returned the ball 50 yards to set up a touchdown. Green Bay scored three more times in the second half, as Elijah Pitts ran in two touchdowns and backup end Max McGee–who came on the field after the starter Boyd Dowler was injured on the sixth play of the game–caught his second touchdown pass of the day. Prior to the game, McGee had made only four receptions all season; he made seven that night, for a total of 138 yards. The Packers’ famed quarterback, Bryan Bartlett “Bart” Starr, completed 16 of 23 passes on the night. The score at game’s end stood at 35-10, and Starr was named Most Valuable Player. Asked to comment on the match-up after the game, Green Bay Coach Vince Lombardi expressed the common opinion that even the best of the AFL—the Chiefs—“doesn’t compare with the top NFL teams.” Two years later, the AFL proved itself to doubters by winning its first championship, when Joe Namath led the New York Jets to an upset 16-7 victory over the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III. In 1970, the AFL and NFL merged into one league, as the Colts, Cleveland Browns and Pittsburgh Steelers agreed to join the 10 AFL teams to form American Football Conference (AFC). Since then, the Super Bowl has been the annual meeting of the top teams in the AFC and the National Football Conference (NFC) for the championship of the NFL.

Super Bowl History - Facts, Stats and Highlights - HISTORY

Now for some stock and investing news-

Rio Tinto (NYSE:RIO) says it will become North America's first producer of critical mineral scandium oxide with the construction of a commercial-scale demonstration plant in Quebec. Scandium oxide is used in lasers and lighting for stadiums and for production of alloys for the aerospace and defense industries, among other applications. Rio says it will spend $6M to build the first module in the plant at its metallurgical complex in Sorel-Tracy, with commercial production starting in Q2.

Duke Energy (DUK +0.1%) tells the North Carolina Utilities Commission that the regulator does not need to approve its proposal to form a centralized energy exchange market before bringing it to federal regulators. The assertion is new, made for the first time in an oral argument during a hearing before the NCUC that followed protests by environmental groups arguing Duke's proposal is subject to state regulation. Opponents asserted that the NCUC has a responsibility to make certain the proposed exchange would be good for customers and not allow Duke to evade requirements that the commission approve contracts and agreements among its affiliates.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency and Treasury Department have reached an agreement that will allow Fannie Mae (OTCQB:FNMA) and Freddie Mac (OTCQB:FMCC) to keep their earnings until they reach the capital targets needed to exit conservatorship. The mortgage giants reached an agreement last year to retain up to $25B in earnings, but prior to that, all of Fannie and Freddie's earnings were swept to the Treasury Department to repay federal funds used to bail the two enterprises out during the global financial crisis.

Spotify (NYSE:SPOT) cut to sell from neutral at Citi as the company's "podcast pivot'' may not be working to add premium subscribers. Spotify fell 8.3% in premarket trading.  The "cadence'' of Premium gross addition though 3Q20 and app download data do not show "any material benefit" from recent podcasts investments that began in 2019, according to Citi analyst Jason Bazine. Raises PT to $310 from $270. Cut to Sell but increases the price target? What am I missing?

Where is Jon Corzine and will MF Global be buyers of Fannie Mae today?

Where is Marissa Mayer and will she ever share her management expertise with the Seeking Alpha crowd?

Where is Elizabeth Holmes and will she wear her usual black turtleneck sweater every day in court?

Have a great day everyone. Stay safe out there.

This is the day The Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.



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