Before we get onto the spending debate, the main news ahead of the open is U.S retail sales coming in ultra hot...

A reading of +5.3% vs expectations of +1.2%... 🔥

Waiting for the STIMULUS FUELS U.S. SPENDING BOOM headlines

The spending was broad with every major category showing increases...

Electronics and appliances saw the biggest increase, up 14.7% for the month, while furniture and home furnishing stores were up 12% and online spending at nonstore retailers jumped 11%. Even food and drinking places, which suffered the worst during the pandemic, saw a 6.9% rise.

It's just one data point and those hoping for big bold stimulus packages may hope this isn't the start of a trend...

Today's Opening Belle 🔔

Bitcoin 🚀

Bitcoin hit $51k today, and the rally has led to some odd comparisons with the Fed's balance sheet and M2 money supply (No, they're not related in ANY way)...

David and I discussed what's driving the move, and touched on the reasons for the rally to continue from here.

We didn't touch on the options pricing though - that's covered by Equos' Justin d'Anethan here

Equos is a digital asset exchange built to institutional standards & available to everyone.

Check them out here

With a focus on innovation, transparency and trust, EQUOS is a part of Diginex, the first Nasdaq-listed company with a cryptocurrency exchange.

Sunak urged to copy Biden and ‘act big’ with £190bn stimulus 💷💸

Britain needs to “act big” with a £190bn fiscal stimulus matching the ambition of Joe Biden in order to restart the economy and avoid long-term stagnation, a UK think-tank has warned.

So says the Institute for Public Policy Research... (via the FT)

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has so far committed the government to additional spending of £40bn, equivalent to around 2 per cent of gross domestic product in the next fiscal year relative to pre-pandemic plans, IPPR said.
This is dwarfed by the new US administration’s proposals for a $1.9tn stimulus package worth almost 9 per cent of GDP over the coming year.
IPPR argues that the UK needs to launch a stimulus package on a similar scale to the US — worth £190bn, or 8.6 per cent of GDP in 2021-22 — to avoid a vicious cycle of business bankruptcies, lay-offs and depressed demand.
It calculates this as the amount of extra spending needed to lift the UK economy back towards its full potential, and argues that it should be directed towards pandemic-related spending, an extension of job and income support schemes and help for businesses and public investment.
“The risk of doing too little far outweighs the risk of doing too much. Joe Biden has understood this. Rishi Sunak should follow his lead,” said Carsten Jung, senior economist at IPPR.

Some of that spending will need to go towards the skills mismatch

Industrial Strategy Council

'Manifesting' is 'Bollocks'

Here's the thread that inspired our conversation

Ultimately, it's impossible to manifest anything into existence, and the 'self help' industry perpetuates the myths that line their pockets...

5 Problems with the Self-Help Industry
Self-help is a billion dollar industry, but it comes with its own array of problems and dilemmas. Learn to escape the pitfalls and rip-offs.

Utrust - taking crypto payments mainstream

How does it work?

They're also writing a series on the history of money which is well worth a read!

Understanding Money: Before the Fiat
We have always traded. It’s a common misconception that the idea of markets and trade are a relatively recent concept, borne out of civilization and large groups of people. This isn’t true of course…