What We’re Reading

Lifespan:

It is calculated that even a complete cure for cancer would add less than three years to life expectancy, because so many other killers are waiting in the wings for older patients.

Pessimists:

You ever notice it’s the same people who complained about being “pushed out on the risk curve” due to low interest rates on bonds who are now upset about higher interest rates on bonds?

You ever notice it’s the same noisemakers who’ve been seeing recessions over every horizon for a decade who are now complaining about too much economic growth?

You ever notice it’s the same folks who lamented the lack of growth who are now crying about how the acceleration of growth is unsustainable?

People:

Since the Declaration of Independence in 1776, the population of the U.S. has dropped only once, in 1918, when more people died from the Spanish flu than from war wounds on the battlefields of Europe. The second-lowest year for population growth? Probably this year, 2021.

An April 7 research briefing from Oxford Economics estimates that the U.S. population will grow just 0.2% this year, after growth of just 0.4% last year. Those are the lowest numbers in U.S. history, with the exception of the population shrinkage of about 0.1% in the pandemic year of 1918.

Startups:

Part of the reason it’s getting easier to start a startup is social. Society is (re)assimilating the concept. If you start one now, your parents won’t freak out the way they would have a generation ago, and knowledge about how to do it is much more widespread. But the main reason it’s easier to start a startup now is that it’s cheaper. Technology has driven down the cost of both building products and acquiring customers.

Roads:

For the first time since the pandemic started, Americans are driving more than they did in 2019 on interstate highways.. Data from USDOT says all vehicle miles driven on interstate highways were up 1% on the week ending April 11 vs same 2019 week.

Have a good weekend.


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