The Finance 202: Democratic economists call for big spending, total rethink of deficits as GOP seeks austerity

The paper could be ammunition for how the incoming Biden administrations aims to counter new calls from congressional Republicans for a return to austerity, after the rising tide of debt they authorized under President Trump.

Biden won on a pledge to rebuild the economy with multitrillion-dollar proposals for infrastructure, clean energy projects, and social safety net expansions. 

Centrist economists from Summers, a treasury secretary in the Clinton administration, to former Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke, who was appointed by President George W. Bush and kept on by President Obama, endorsed more spending during a virtual panel cohosted by the Brookings Institution and the Peterson Institute for International Economics. 

“Nobody on the panel is going to say we should be balancing the budget any time soon,” Bernanke said, recommending instead that the U.S. plow money into addressing climate change, inequality, health care and infrastructure — investments he said would

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Why Facebook Is Spending $1 Billion on a Company You’ve Never Heard Of

Facebook wants to be where you run your business online. To be fair, it’s already pretty good at it. Regardless of what you think of Facebook’s many issues–like privacy, fake news, or content moderation–when it comes to providing businesses a platform to reach customers, it’s hard to argue there are many more effective options.

Still, it’s trying to get better. Or, at least, stickier. We’ll get back to that part in a minute.

Facebook announced on Monday that it would spend $1 billion to acquire Kustomer, a CRM that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to help businesses manage customer support. Mostly that means it gathers customer communications across various channels such as social media, email, chat messages, and website chatbots. That way, no matter how a customer communicates with your business, you can keep all of the conversations managed in one place. 

In a blog post about the acquisition, Facebook says

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Why spending a long time on your phone isn’t bad for mental health — ScienceDaily

General smartphone usage is a poor predictor of anxiety, depression or stress say researchers, who advise caution when it comes to digital detoxes.

The study published in Technology, Mind, and Behavior was led by Heather Shaw and Kristoffer Geyer from Lancaster University with Dr David Ellis and Dr Brittany Davidson from the University of Bath and Dr Fenja Ziegler and Alice Smith from the University of Lincoln.

They measured the time spent on smartphones by 199 iPhone users and 46 Android users for one week. Participants were also asked about their mental and physical health, completing clinical scales that measure anxiety and depression symptoms. They also completed a scale which measured how problematic they perceived their smartphone usage to be.

Surprisingly, the amount of time spent on the smartphone was not related to poor mental health.

Lead author Heather Shaw of Lancaster University’s Department of Psychology said: “A person’s daily

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Black Friday online spending surges to record $9B

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Online shoppers spent a record $9 billion on Black Friday.


Alina Bradford/CNET

Online spending on Black Friday notched a record $9 billion this year, according to data from Adobe Analytics, as the pandemic forced deal-hungry consumers to avoid crowded stores on busy shopping day.

Consumer spending on the internet surged 21.6% on the day after Thanksgiving, turning in the second-largest day for online spending in US history, behind last year’s Cyber Monday, Adobe found. This year’s Cyber Monday is expected to be the largest online shopping day in US history, with Adobe predicting shoppers will spend nearly $11 billion.

Black Friday looked a bit different this year, due to the pandemic. Many stores opted to skip the traditional opening on Thanksgiving night leading up to the big day,

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The ESA is spending $100 million to clean up one piece of space junk



a body of water: space junk cleanup


© Provided by BGR
space junk cleanup

  • The European Space Agency is paying the equivalent of over $100 million to remove a single piece of manmade space junk from Earth orbit.
  • The ClearSpace-1 mission will launch in 2025 and attempt to bring down a rocket payload adapter.
  • The mission will be critical in demonstrating how future cleanup efforts may be possible.

We all love seeing rockets launch, carrying scientific equipment and sometimes human beings into space. It’s cool, and it’s proof that when humans put their minds to something they can accomplish great things. Unfortunately, launching things into space leaves a lot of trash behind, often floating in orbit around Earth for months or, in some cases, many years.

Space junk is a huge problem that is growing bigger by the day. Discarded rocket components, bits and pieces of old, defunct satellites, and even abandoned space stations (looking at you,

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Verdantix Smart Building Technologies Survey Reveals Spending Plans And Technology Priorities For 2021

Independent research firm Verdantix has released its annual global survey of 250 real estate occupiers across 13 geographies and 18 industries on their firms’ real estate strategic direction, governance, budgets and priorities in relation to technology decisions. The survey revealed that attracting and retaining talent was the top priority for 37% of respondents, followed by building resiliency (23%), cost reduction (22%), and building occupant health and wellbeing (18%).

“Unsurprisingly, COVID-19 has caused vast disruption to business operations globally this year.” commented Verdantix Industry Analyst, Dayann Charles Jeyamohan. “This has prompted many firms to prioritize talent retention and occupant wellbeing programmes within their business strategies to ensure a motivated and healthy workforce during the crisis.”

Key findings of the Verdantix ‘Global Corporate Survey 2020: Smart Building Technology Budgets, Priorities & Preferences’ report:

  • Enabling a remote workforce is the most significant factor shaping real estate strategies (96%), closely followed by social distancing
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Financial institutions to boost future blockchain spending

Many financial institutions are poised to increase their blockchain spending in 2021, according to an upcoming survey from Deloitte titled “Financial Services Industry Outlooks 2020.”

Preliminary results shared with Cointelegraph indicate that 27% of the institutions surveyed expect a “slight increase in spend” for blockchain and distributed ledger technology, while 14% are expecting a large increase. A further 33% expect no change, with the remaining 27% looking to cut their expenditure slightly.

The survey was held between July and August 2020. Respondents included 800 senior executives at financial institutions — banks, payments companies, insurance companies, hedge funds, and other investment companies. The companies were required to have posted at least $1 billion in revenue in 2019 to be included in the survey.

The survey grouped blockchain with a variety of other emerging technologies. While it was not the most popular overall, the technology appears to be quite polarizing: The percentage

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Gaming Computer Black Friday Deals 2020: CyberpowerPC, NZXT, iBUYPOWER, Skytech & More Gaming Desktop Deals Monitored by Spending Lab

Gaming PC deals for Black Friday 2020, featuring all the top MSI, iBUYPOWER, NZXT, CyberpowerPC & more offers

Black Friday 2020 sales experts are monitoring the best gaming computer deals for Black Friday 2020, including offers on CyberpowerPC, MSI, HP, iBUYPOWER, Dell, NZXT and more gaming PCs. Links to the best deals are listed below.

Best Gaming PC Deals:

  • Save up to $200 on high-powered gaming PCs at HP.comcheck for live prices on best-selling gaming machines like the HP OMEN 15, OMEN 17, OMEN X5 and Pavilion series
  • Save up to 49% on top-rated gaming PCs from MSI, iBUYPOWER, Dell & CYBERPOWERPC at Walmart – including savings on Intel Core i7, pre-built & Legion by Lenovo gaming machines
  • Save up to $300 on top-rated gaming PCs at Amazoncheck deals on pre built gaming computers, laptops and monitors from top rated brands like MSI, iBUYPOWER, CyberPowerPC and
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Federal Spurt in Cloud Spending Will Extend Well Into the Future | Cloud Computing

The rapid expansion in the use of cloud technologies to support remote working during the COVID-19 pandemic has underscored that the U.S. government’s increasingly high rate of cloud adoption will likely be sustained for the next several years.

In fact, 2020 was a “historic year” for federal cloud migration, according to Alex Rossino, senior principal research analyst at Deltek. Federal spending on cloud technology reached $6.8 billion in the 2020 federal fiscal year, more than double the level of 2017.

“I think that the federal market turned a corner in fiscal 2018 with the publication of the ‘Cloud Smart’ guidance. After that agencies began rapidly accelerating the migration of systems and use of SaaS capabilities. COVID-19 only added fuel to that fire,” Rossino told the E-Commerce Times.

“Cloud Smart” is a Trump administration initiative to modernize information technology and generate cloud migration at federal agencies with an emphasis on security

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Best Black Friday Gaming Computer Deals 2020: Early CyberPowerPC & iBUYPOWER Sales Shared by Spending Lab

Early Black Friday gaming PC deals are underway, find all the latest early Black Friday iBUYPOWER & CyberPowerPC gaming desktop sales below

Here’s a summary of all the best early gaming desktop PC deals for Black Friday 2020, including discounts on CyberPowerPC gaming PCs and iBUYPOWER gaming desktops. Links to the best deals are listed below.

Best Gaming PC Deals:

  • Save up to $200 on high-powered gaming PCs at HP.comcheck for live prices on best-selling gaming machines like the HP OMEN 15, OMEN 17, OMEN X5, and Pavilion series
  • Save up to 32% on gaming PCs from top brands including Dell, Alienware & XPS at Dell.com – check the latest deals on top-rated gaming desktops
  • Save up to 53% on top-rated gaming PCs from MSI, iBUYPOWER, Dell & CYBERPOWERPC at Walmart – including savings on Intel Core i7, pre-built & Legion by Lenovo gaming machines
  • Save up to
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