Nearly two dozen GOP governors write letter to Biden, criticize him for taxpayer-funded student loans

September 12, 2022

Montana Loans

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EXCLUSIVE: Nearly two dozen Republican governors sent a letter to President Biden on Monday expressing concern about how his student loan plan, which is expected to cost taxpayers $500 billion, will negatively impact low-income families. .

Led by Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds, the lettersigned by a total of 22 GOP governors, targeted Biden’s plan which they said “punishes the poor” and shifts the “debt burden from the rich to working Americans.”

“As governors, we support making higher education more affordable and accessible to students in our states, but we fundamentally oppose your plan to force American taxpayers to pay off student loan debt from a elite – a plan that is estimated to cost the tax-paying American more than $2,000 each or $600 billion in total, a price the people of our states cannot afford,” the governors said. .

“Only 16-17% of Americans have federal student loan debt, and yet your plan will require their debts to be redistributed and paid for by the vast majority of taxpayers,” the governors continued. “Shifting the debt burden from the wealthy to working Americans has a regressive impact that hurts low-income families. Borrowers with the most debt, like $50,000 or more, almost exclusively have graduate degrees, which means that hourly workers will pay for master’s and doctoral degrees from highly paid lawyers, doctors and professors.”


A letter from 22 GOP governors, led by Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, was sent to President Biden on Monday, lambasting him for his student loan plan that “punishes the poor.”
(AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

“Furthermore, the top 20% of households hold $3 in student debt for every $1 held by the bottom quintile, generating a skewed reality where the wealthy benefit at the expense of labor. Simply put, your plan rewards the wealthy and punishes the poor,” they added.

GOP governors reiterated that Americans’ decision to take out student loans “was their decision” and that those who choose not to take out loans in exchange for college tuition “certainly should not have to pay student loans from others”.

“A high-cost degree isn’t the key to unlocking the American dream — hard work and personal responsibility are,” the governors said. “For many borrowers, they’ve worked hard, made sacrifices, and paid off their debt. For many others, they’ve chosen hard work and a paycheck over more education and a loan.”

Republican governors also warned Biden that his decision to forgive the student loan debt of millions of Americans at taxpayer expense “will encourage more student borrowing, incentivize higher tuition, and drive inflation even higher, which will have a negative impact on all Americans.”


President Biden speaks during a Labor Day event with United Steelworkers of America Local 2227 in West Mifflin, Pennsylvania on September 5, 2022.

President Biden speaks during a Labor Day event with United Steelworkers of America Local 2227 in West Mifflin, Pennsylvania on September 5, 2022.
(Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images)

“Even economists in your own party oppose your plan to increase demand and increase inflation,” they wrote. “Rather than tackling rising tuition fees for higher education or working to lower interest rates for student loans, your plan kicks things off and compounds today’s problems. today for the students of tomorrow.”

Referencing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s 2021 remarks that said the president “didn’t have that power” to eliminate student loan debt, the governors insisted that Biden didn’t “have the power” to eliminate student loan debt. power to exercise unilateral action to usher in a comprehensive student loan cancellation plan”.

In addition to Reynolds, the letter was signed by Alabama Governor Kay Ivey, Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey, Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, Governor of Florida Ron DeSantis, Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, Idaho Governor Brad Little, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, Missouri Governor Mike Parson, Montana Governor Greg Gianforte, Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu, Governor of North Dakota Doug Burgum, Governor of Ohio Mike DeWine, Governor of Oklahoma Kevin Stitt, Governor of South Carolina Henry McMaster, Governor of South Dakota Kristi Noem, Governor of Tennessee Bill Lee, Governor of Texas Greg Abbott, Governor of Utah Spencer Cox and Governor of Wyoming Mark Gordon.

A student studies at the Rice University library on August 29, 2022 in Houston, Texas.

A student studies at the Rice University library on August 29, 2022 in Houston, Texas.
(Brandon Bell/Getty Images)


Last month, Biden announced up to $20,000 in federal student loan forgiveness. Students who attended college using the federal Pell Grants are eligible for $20,000, but those who did not use the program are eligible for a $10,000 rebate. The document only applies to borrowers earning less than $125,000 per year.

Responsible Budget Committee estimate the cost of aid around $500 billion.

Anders Hagstrom of Fox News contributed to this article.

RIL, Tata Steel, ONGC, Bank of Baroda in brief

September 12, 2022

Montana Lending

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Reliance Industries RIL): RIL said its wholly owned subsidiary Reliance Petroleum Retail has signed the definitive documents to acquire the polyester businesses of Shubhalakshmi Polyesters (SPL) and Shubhlaxmi Polytex (SPTex). Reliance Petroleum Retail (trading as “Reliance Polyester”) will acquire the polyester businesses of SPL and SPTex for cash consideration of Rs 1,522 crore and Rs 70 crore, respectively, totaling Rs 1,592 crore by way of down sale on an ongoing operating basis.

Tata Steel: The steel major’s board is due to meet on September 14, 2022 to consider the issuance of unsecured non-convertible debentures on a private placement basis.

Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC): ONGC has signed 6 contracts for Small Open Fields (DSF) under the Offshore Tender under DSF-III, with 3 each for the Arabian Sea fields and the Bay of Bengal. These include 4 contract areas as sole bidder and 2 contract areas in partnership with Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL). The company has also signed 2 contracts for fields under CBM specials around 2021 blocks in Jharkhand and Madhya Pradesh.

Bank of Baroda: The public sector lender on Friday announced an increase in the lending rate based on the marginal cost of funds (MCLR) by 5 to 15 basis points, effective Monday, September 12, 2022.

Container Corporation of India: Container Corporation of India said the ICRA has reaffirmed the credit rating of the company’s debt securities. The ratings, however, continue to be monitored with developing implications, the agency said.

Indian Overseas Bank: PSU Bank announced on Friday an increase in the lending rate based on the marginal cost of funds (MCLR) by 10 basis points, effective Saturday, September 10, 2022.

Spicejet: Spicejet on Friday announced the appointment of Ashish Kumar as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) effective September 9, 2022.

Trident: Trident announced its production point for August 2022 on Saturday, September 10, 2022. In the linens division, production of bath linens fell 37.17% to 3,091 metric tons (MT) in August 2022 vs. 4,920 MT posted in August 2021. Bed linen production fell by 37.74% to 1.93 million meters (MM) in August 2022 from 3.1 MM recorded in August 2021. Yarn production fell by 41.72% to 6,471 MT in August 2022, compared to 11,103 MT reported in the same period a year ago.

Venus Pipes & Tubes: Venus Pipes & Tubes has declared that it has been recognized as an ALL INDIA FIRST (AIF) Manufacturer to receive Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) Approval for Seamless and Welded Stainless Steel Pipes and Tubes .

Spandana Sphoorty Financial: Spandana Sphoorty Financial said its board approved the allotment of 600 non-convertible debentures on a private placement basis for an aggregate consideration of Rs 60 crore.

HG Infra: EPC Company announced on Friday that its wholly owned subsidiary, HG Ateli Narnaul Highway, has received the Certificate of Completion for a construction project in Haryana.

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China quarantines students under strict COVID policy | health and fitness

September 11, 2022

Montana Economy

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BEIJING (AP) — Nearly 500 students from China’s First College for Broadcast Journalists have been sent to a quarantine center after a handful of COVID-19 cases were detected in their dormitory.

The 488 students of the Communication University of China, along with 19 teachers and five assistants, were transferred by bus from Friday evening.

Quarantining anyone deemed to have been in contact with someone who tested positive for the virus has been a mainstay of China’s strict “zero-COVID” policy. Quarantine centers include field hospitals as well as converted stadiums and exhibition centers which have been criticized for overcrowding, poor hygiene and spoiled food.

As of last week, around 65 million Chinese residents were under control despite only 1,248 new cases of domestic transmission reported on Sunday. Most of them were asymptomatic.

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The shutdowns have sparked online protests and clashes with health workers and police, and taken a heavy toll on the economy, affecting global supply chains for electronics and other goods. A week-long lockdown in China’s biggest city, Shanghai, over the summer has prompted an exodus of migrant workers and foreign businessmen.

With the release of economic data this week, analysts will seek to understand how China’s handling of the pandemic is affecting economic activity in the world’s second-largest economy. The confinements have been accompanied by almost daily tests, travel restrictions and the suspension of classes at all levels.

China has continued the relentless enforcement of the policy, even as virtually every other country has sought to return to normal life with vaccines and drugs to fight the virus.

“Zero COVID” is closely associated with President and Communist Party leader Xi Jinping, leading to accusations that the government has politicized a public health crisis. His administration rejected statements by the World Health Organization that the policy is unsustainable and refused to approve foreign vaccines that are widely considered more effective than those produced by Chinese companies.

Xi, who has not traveled abroad since the pandemic began in early 2020, has taken control of all the levers of power and set a confrontational tone for foreign policy, while sidelining or imprisoning his rivals. He has eliminated term limits for the presidency and is set to receive a third five-year term as communist leader at the party’s congress next month.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

Here are the 5 worst states to flip a house

September 11, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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South Dakota’s data points clearly resemble the other states on this list, but one thing stands out above all the rest. South Dakota’s average yield is a very respectable 26.1%, but the take is just $17,750 (via CNBC).

Both of these figures are important when considering an investment, as a large profit margin is always desired. However, the actual dollar amount returned can signal a great opportunity or a difficult road ahead.

Penny stocks, for example, offer investors a unique opportunity to make a kill – if the stock price rises. A stock bought for a dollar only needs to inflate its price by 20 cents to earn a profit of 20% and double the annualized return that stock investors can expect with an indexed portfolio (via Nerd Wallet). But the risk factor associated with a penny stock is far greater than that of a portfolio marked by blue-chip company stocks, index funds and other traditional assets. Stocks could rise by that small margin and net you a nice raise, but to capture the value of that 20%, you’ll need to invest a huge amount of equity that might as well crash.

South Dakota’s average return is a lot like the speculative value provided by penny stocks: if things go as expected, a healthy percentage is expected, but to see a relatively valuable net increase, you’ll need to invest in a number of properties and continue to take advantage of the luck on your side.

Cancellation of student loans will have an outsized impact in the Mountain West

September 9, 2022

Montana Lending

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A substantial percentage of people in the Mountain West area with student loans will see up to $20,000 in student loan debt forgiven after a recent announcement of the Biden administration.

Nearly 38% of Wyoming borrowers will be student loan free as a result of this forgiveness initiative, according to a recent analysis by Student Loan Hero, a student loan servicing company owned by Lending Tree.

This is the highest share in the country, and Nevada and Utah are not far behind.

President Joe Biden said last month he hoped to make it easier for the middle and working classes to build careers without a huge financial burden.

“The cost of education beyond high school has increased dramatically. The total cost to attend a four-year public university has tripled, almost tripled, in 40 years,” he said.

Most borrowers will get $10,000 forgiven, while Pell Grant recipients, which are given to low-income students, will get $20,000. Only people earning less than $125,000 a year, or $250,000 for married couples, are eligible.

Analysis shows that most Mountain West states have fewer people taking loans on average, and those students tend to choose less expensive schools. Therefore, canceling $10,000 of debt has a bigger impact and allows more people to go debt-free.

“That said, even in these states at the top of the list, the average debt is still high,” says Student Loan Hero. “For example, our Utah student loan analysis shows average balances between federal and private borrowers of $31,046. Our Nevada student loan data shows average balances of $32,402.”

Several Republican officials in the region were critical of Biden’s announcement, saying it’s a federal document that doesn’t address the high costs of education.

This story was produced by the Mountain West News Bureau, a collaboration between Wyoming Public Media, Nevada Public Radio, Boise State Public Radio in Idaho, KUNR in Nevada, the O’Connor Center for the Rocky Mountain West in Montana , KUNC in Colorado, KUNM in New Mexico, with support from affiliate stations throughout the region. Funding for the Mountain West News Bureau is provided in part by the public broadcasting company.

Copyright 2022 Wyoming Public Radio. To see more, visit Wyoming Public Radio.

Board of directors asks about abortion rights in Michigan fall ballot

September 9, 2022

Montana Economy

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LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan election committee placed an abortion rights proposal in the fall ballot on Friday, obeying an order from the highest court in the state and closing a record-breaking petition campaign trying to change the state constitution.

The amendment would affirm Michigan’s right to make pregnancy-related decisions without interference, including abortion and other reproductive services such as birth control.

The Michigan Supreme Court ordered the Board of State Solicitors a day earlier to put him on the November 8 ballot. The board, made up of two Democrats and two Republicans, killed the proposal in a tie vote last weekGOP members siding with abortion opponents who said the petition had incorrect or no spacing between certain words.

Chief Justice Bridget McCormack derisively called it “a game of gotcha gone horribly wrong.” She said the words were legible and in the correct order.

Supporters had submitted more than 750,000 signatures, easily crossing the minimum threshold and setting a record for a ballot initiative in Michigan.

Abortion remained legal in the state even after the United States Supreme Court in June overturned Roe v. Wade. A 1931 law that criminalizes most abortions was suspended by a judge last spring and ruled unconstitutional this week.

But this decision can be appealed. If the voters approve the constitutional amendment guaranteeing the right to abortion, any legal fight would be pointless.

A poll released this week by The Detroit News and WDIV-TV showed abortion and women’s rights were the top issues motivating Michigan residents to vote in November, ahead of inflation, education and the economy. . The poll showed a majority of likely voters supporting the amendment protect the right to abortion.


White reported from Detroit.


Joey Cappelletti is a member of the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms to report on underreported issues.

Lawsuit challenges Montana’s COVID vaccine ban on tribal lands | Local News

September 8, 2022

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A Cut Bank economic development agency has filed a lawsuit claiming that a state organization has “no jurisdiction” on tribal lands to enforce a Montana law that prohibits COVID-19 vaccine warrants.

The Glacier County Regional Port Authority is suing the Montana Office of Human Rights and Department of Labor and Industry Commissioner Laurie Esau. The case will go to trial in the US District Court in Great Falls and Chief Judge Brian Morris will oversee it.

HB 702, passed by Republican lawmakers and signed by Gov. Greg Gianforte in May 2021, aims to prevent workplaces and customers from being discriminated against based on their vaccination status.

According to the lawsuit, when HB 702 was passed, the Blackfeet Tribal Business Council had implemented Tribal Ordinance 121, which required mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for people attending in-person meetings.

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The Tribal Ordinance states that its purpose is “to protect and promote the safety of the Tribal Workforce.”

The lawsuit centers on JR Myers, a non-Native man who allegedly attempted to attend an in-person meeting at Browning but was not vaccinated against COVID-19.

The lawsuit says Myers filed a complaint against the Port Authority with the Montana Human Rights Office. The bureau determined that the Port Authority – which provides small business loans, grants and other forms of assistance – engaged in unlawful discrimination when it demanded that in-person meeting attendees present proof of vaccination.

The Port Authority is asking for a judgment to declare the state office incompetent over tribal lands. Tribes are sovereign nations, meaning they have the right to govern their territory and internal affairs.

Plaintiff also seeks to enjoin the defendants from enforcing HB 702 against the Port Authority, award the Port Authority attorneys’ fees, and award the Port Authority such other remedies as the court deems just.

Several lawsuits have challenged HB 702, but this case stands out in that it challenges the Montana Office of Human Rights’ ability to enforce the law. Earlier cases like Netzer v. Montana Law Firm and Montana Medical Association v. Knudsen sought to invalidate the law itself.

Blackfoot Nation and COVID

While tribes in Montana often enforced stricter safety protocols than the state, Native Americans were disproportionately hospitalized and killed by COVID-19.

The Blackfeet Nation sacrificed vital tourist dollars in 2020 when it closed the gates on the east side of Glacier National Park to protect residents of the reservation from the virus. The tribe has also implemented mask mandates, curfews, remote learning and other initiatives to curb the spread. In July, the tribe reported that 67 community members had died of COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

COVID-19 was the leading cause of death among Native Americans in Montana in 2020, while it was the third leading cause of death among all Montana residents, according to a Department of Health and Human Services. report.

Between March and October 2020, Native Americans in Montana accounted for 19% of COVID-19 cases and 32% of COVID-19 deaths statewide. Indigenous peoples make up approximately 6.7% of Montana’s population.

From August 31 — more than a year after the vaccines were distributed — Native Americans accounted for 8% of COVID-19 cases and 11% of COVID deaths in Montana.

Native Americans face persistent disparities in health and health care, which according to a recent report by the Indian Health Service, “are the result of centuries of structural discrimination, forced relocation, reduced economic opportunity and chronic underfunding of health care”.

The report also cited barriers to care, historical trauma, discrimination and poverty as other factors contributing to health disparities.

Although Native Americans have access to the Indian Health Service, the agency has long been criticized for its chronic underfunding. The same report indicated that the agency’s previous funding met approximately 48.6% of the health care needs of the population it serves.

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FreightWaves Classics/Fallen Flags: Northern Pacific Railway enters service

September 8, 2022

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FreightWaves Classics is sponsored by Old Dominion Freight Line. Click to find out how we can help your business keep its promises.

On September 8, 1883, the Northern Pacific (NP) Railroad, which was the first of the transcontinental railroads that ran through the northern tier states, was officially completed. An extravagant ceremony was held that day near Gold Creek in the southwestern portion of Montana Territory (now the state of Montana). The North Pacific stretched between St. Paul, Minnesota, and Seattle, Washington, opening a key route that connected the Great Lakes region to the Pacific coast.

Four trains carried 300 officials and dignitaries representing the United States, England, and the German Empire to the ceremony. Among those who helped drive the final peak was Ulysses S. Grant, who was the 18th President of the United States when construction of the line began in 1870.

Driving the last spike on the Northern Pacific Railroad on September 8, 1883, at Gold Creek, Montana.  Former US President US Grant is pictured with a spiked maul and to his left is Henry Villard, then President of the North Pacific.  (Photo of the painting:
Driving the last spike on the Northern Pacific Railroad on September 8, 1883, at Gold Creek, Montana. Former US President US Grant is pictured with a spiked maul and to his left is Henry Villard, then President of the North Pacific.
(Photo of the painting:

Early History of the Railroad

The Northern Pacific was chartered by Congress in 1864 to build a railroad from Lake Superior west to a port on the Pacific coast. To do this, he received a land grant of 40 million acres. Despite the huge land grant, he encountered problems finding financial support for his venture in what was then a mostly unstable wilderness. Then Philadelphia banker Jay Cooke sought to raise $100 million to fund the railroad (over $1.87 billion today). By 1873, the rail line had been built almost to Bismarck in Dakota Territory (now North Dakota).

The North Pacific has been one of the keys to the economic growth of the Dakota Territory. The climate, although very cold, was favorable to wheat, which was in great demand in the United States and Europe. Most of the settlers in the Dakotas were German and Scandinavian immigrants who bought cheap farmland and raised large families. Territory farmers shipped huge amounts of wheat to Minneapolis (the center of the milling industry), while purchasing a variety of household equipment and supplies to ship by rail.

Unfortunately, Cooke’s bank collapsed due to the Financial Panic of 1873, a financial crisis that triggered an economic depression in Europe and North America that lasted from 1873 to 1877 in the United States.

A map of the Northern Pacific Railroad.  (Image:
A map of the Northern Pacific Railroad. (Image:

The panic forced the Northern Pacific Railway into receivership; its construction was halted for six years. In 1878, the railway was acquired by Henry Villard, an American journalist and financier. After disagreements with former railroad executives, Villard was elected chairman of a reorganized board of directors on September 15, 1881.

Henry Villard.  (Photo:
Henry Villard.

Under Villard, the railroad was built west to Helena in Montana Territory, where it connected with the Oregon Railroad from Villard to Seattle in Washington Territory in 1883. C It was then that the ceremony took place near Gold Creek in the Montana Territory.

At that time, the North Pacific had approximately 6,800 miles of track. It served a wide area, including extensive lanes in the states of Idaho, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, Washington, and Wisconsin. Additionally, the NP had a branch that served Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The main freight carried by the railroad was the bountiful wheat and other grains, cattle, timber, and minerals. The NP also transported consumer goods and farmers (many of whom purchased farmland from the railroad) through the fertile Red River Valley along the Minnesota-North Dakota border.

An advertisement for the Northern Pacific Railway.  (Image: North Dakota State Historical Society)
An advertisement for the Northern Pacific Railway. (Image: North Dakota State Historical Society)

another panic

About 10 years after the railway was completed, another financial crisis hit. The Panic of 1893 was a national economic depression triggered by the collapse of two of the nation’s largest employers – the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad and the National Cordage Company. Following the bankruptcy of these companies, a panic broke out on the stock market. Hundreds of businesses have been overstretched, having borrowed money to expand their operations. When the financial crisis hit, banks and investment companies asked for loans, causing hundreds of business failures across the country. In particular, banks, railways and steel mills went bankrupt. Over 15,000 businesses closed during the Panic of 1893, which did not end until 1897. The unemployment rate in the United States soared to 20%-25%; and homelessness soared as workers were laid off and couldn’t pay their rent or mortgage. The panic also led to the political realignment of 1896 and the presidency of Republican William McKinley.

James J. Hill.  (Photo:
James J. Hill. (Photo:

Because of the Panic of 1893, the North Pacific encountered new financial difficulties. It was reorganized by JP Morgan, who shared control of the railway with James J. Hill, whose Great Northern Railway Company was a competitor to the Northern Pacific.

Hill sought to combine the Great Northern Railway and the Northern Pacific Railway with his Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad Company through the Northern Securities Company, with Hill as chairman. (For more in FreightWaves Classics about James J. Hill and the Great Northern Railway, follow this link for Part 1 and this link for Part 2.)

20th century developments

However, President Theodore Roosevelt (who had ascended to the presidency after the assassination of President McKinley) opposed Hill’s railroad combination. Then, in 1904, the United States Supreme Court declared the Northern Securities Company in violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act and ordered the company dissolved in 1904.

The logo of the Northern Pacific Railroad.  (Image: Adam Burns/
The logo of the Northern Pacific Railroad.
(Image: Adam Burns/

While the Great Northern and Northern Pacific were linked to the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad, both railroads gained extremely important access to Chicago, the nation’s largest rail hub. They also gained access to the central Midwest and Texas, as well as the Spokane, Portland, and Seattle railroad lines, a major route through eastern and southern Washington.

In addition, money was reinvested in the North Pacific; Its physical plant has been upgraded, including dual track in key areas and automatic block signaling along its entire main line.

The Northern Pacific has also maintained and improved its equipment and services. It was among the first U.S. railroads to adopt diesel power (beginning in 1944), although due to its Wyoming-based coal reserves, NP was among the last U.S. railroads to complete dieselization (in 1960).

A North Pacific freight train.  (Photo:
A North Pacific freight train. (Photo:

By 1900, most of the remaining railroad land grants were located west of Montana. As further east, railroad management hoped to sell the majority of this land. Land sales would provide operating funds and help populate the area, providing new markets for the railroad. However, almost all of the good farmland had been sold before, even though the timberland was of high quality. Much of the timber land was sold to Frederick Weyerhaeuser.

A North Pacific freight train.  (Photo:
A North Pacific freight train. (Photo:

Railway consolidation

Despite the Supreme Court ruling, the three railroads continued to be financially tied. In 1970 they were allowed to merge, creating the Burlington Northern, Inc. Then Burlington Northern acquired the St. Louis-San Francisco Railway Company in 1980 and the Santa Fe Pacific Corporation in 1995. The railroad became the Burlington Northern Santa Fe, or BNSF, one of the last Class I railroads.

Photograph of a train crossing a desert.
A BNSF train heads for its next destination. (Photo: Jim Allen/FreightWaves)

FreightWaves Classics thanks, Burlington Northern Tribute, BNSF, McGill University, North Dakota Historical Society, and for information and images that contributed to this article.

FREIGHTWAVES’ Top 500 For-Hire Carriers list includes Old Dominion Freight Line (#9).

New Bedford City Council to vote on wage reclassification

September 8, 2022

Montana Lending

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The New Bedford City Council will vote tonight on an agenda item that will allow the salary reclassification of city employees – which Mayor Jon Mitchell said will help New Bedford attract the best candidates and fill some positions that have been vacant for a long time.

“The reclassification is essentially a reshuffling of the pay scale for city government management employees, that is, non-union employees,” Mitchell said during his weekly appearance on WBSM.

“We constantly negotiate the contracts that the union enters into with the various collective bargaining units in the city. Usually we sign every negotiation up to a three-year contract which invariably includes salary increases every year,” he said. “In these salary increases, we can somehow maintain a fair and competitive salary scale.

However, this reclassification will allow the City of New Bedford to offer more money to management employees who are not part of unions.

“For management employees, we don’t do this periodically,” Mitchell said. “What we try to do from time to time is try to update their salary to make sure we can bring quality candidates into the city because that’s what the city deserves. It deserves high quality, sharp, knowledgeable and highly competent people who do the very important work of providing municipal services and managing people in municipal government.

Mitchell said the city was “struggling to fill positions” such as chief financial officer and city auditor.

“We’ve had a few retirements lately, some people have gone elsewhere. There are a lot of reasons why there was turnover,” he said. “But we have to replace those people and what we find is that we swing and miss too often because our salaries just aren’t competitive. So we have to keep up, and this reclassification effort is our attempt to ensure that New Bedford recruits high-quality people to fill the really important positions in city government.

Mitchell said when it comes to hiring those positions, the city “gets no bites.” An executive recruiter – or “headhunter” – named Bernie Lynch was hired by the City to find candidates for the positions of chief financial officer and auditor, because of his expertise in potential candidates for such positions.

“He spent over six months beating the pot, trying to find candidates, and it was left empty,” Mitchell said.

He said they had found a highly qualified candidate in a nearby town.

“But he wanted to start at something higher,” Mitchell said. “In order not to take a pay cut from his current position, he had to start at something higher than the entry-level salary at New Bedford, and long story short, the city council was unwilling to take him on. do, and so we lost it.

Mitchell said the goal for now is simply to get wages reclassified so the city can offer a higher salary to potential hires, after comparing salaries currently offered with other cities in New Brunswick. England.

“I think in the long run, and in the vast majority of cities we looked at, the mayor has the power to launch a candidate higher than first, because you need some flexibility when someone wants to be here, but to avoid a pay cut, sometimes you have to start something higher than the low,” he said.

He said the board will address this flexibility at a later date.

“For now, we are simply resetting all salaries in a way that is both competitive but also fair to the whole of municipal government, so that people feel that the city is working to ensure that everyone is supported and that we’re getting the highest quality candidates possible, and retaining them as well,” Mitchell said.

If the board approves the reclassification, Mitchell said the salary increase would take effect “immediately.”

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Gavins Point Winter Outings Will Be Minimum Fares > Northwest Division > Northwest Division Press Releases

September 7, 2022

Montana Economy

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Drought conditions in the Missouri River basin above Sioux City, Iowa continued through August. According to the Master Manual and System Storage Audit of September 1, winter discharge from Gavins Point Dam will be 12,000 cubic feet per second (cfs), as part of overall water conservation measures.

While July brought much-needed moisture to the Missouri River basin, August showed a return to the hot, dry conditions seen in the basin for the past two seasons. August runoff was 0.9 MAF, 62% of average above Sioux City, and 0.6 MAF or 49% of average above Gavins Point Dam. The part of the basin that drains into Oahe Reservoir was particularly dry, seeing only 10% of its average August runoff. The 2022 calendar year forecast for the upper basin, updated September 1, is 20.2 million acre-feet (MAF), or 78% of the average. The average annual runoff for the upper basin is 25.8 MAF.

“Reservoir supplies in August were well below average. We expect below-average inflows to the system through the remainder of 2022,” said John Remus, head of the Army Corps of Engineers’ Missouri River Basin Water Management Division. American. “Based on storage in the system during the September 1 storage audit, Gavins Point winter releases will be 12,000 cfs for the second year in a row,” Remus added.

As of September 2, the total volume of water stored in the system was 50.2 MAF, which is 5.9 MAF below the base of the system’s flood control zone. System storage should continue to shrink throughout the fall. Updated reservoir studies indicate that system storage is expected to be greater than 8.4 MAF below flood control base at the start of the 2022 runoff season.

According to the National Drought Mitigation Center, drought conditions in the basin have worsened over the past month. Seventy-four percent of the basin is experiencing abnormally dry or drought conditions, including 7% extreme or exceptional drought. Northern Montana and southwestern Nebraska have exceptionally dry soil conditions. The September and seasonal drought outlook shows that the existing drought persists and extends into the basin through the end of November.

The Gavins Point Dam releases will be configured to provide navigational stream support at a level of 500 cfs above minimum service to the four target locations (Sioux City, Omaha, Nebraska City and Kansas City). Flow targets may be missed to conserve water if there is no commercial shipping in a given reach. The season support will end on November 28 at the mouth of the Missouri River.

Winter Release Rate
In accordance with the criteria of the main manual, the winter discharge rate is determined based on the storage of the system on September 1. According to system storage as of September 1, winter releases from Gavins Point Dam will be at the minimum rate of 12,000 cfs. In anticipation of low winter discharges, a letter will be sent in early September to all water users downstream of the Gavins Point Dam informing them of the expected discharges and encouraging them to assess the risks to their facilities.

Monthly Water Management Conference Calls
The calls for water stewardship include an update on operations of the main Missouri River reservoir system. The next call for 2022 will be Thursday, September 8. All calls are recorded in their entirety and are publicly available on our website at

Fall Public Meetings
The Northwest Division will host a series of town hall meetings the week of October 24-28. The dates and locations of the meetings are listed below.

  • October 24, Fort Peck, MT @ 11:30 a.m. MT – Fort Peck Interpretive Center
  • Oct. 24, Bismarck, ND at 5:00 p.m. CT – Bismarck State College
  • October 25, Ft Pierre, Sd @ 10:00 a.m. CT – Casey Tibbs Conference Center
  • October 25, Sioux City, IA @ 4:00 PM CT – Betty Strong Dating Center
  • October 26, Smithville, MO @ 11:00 a.m. CT – Jerry Litton Visitor Center
  • October 26, Nebraska City, NE @ 6:00 PM CT – Steinhart Lodge
  • Oct. 27, St. Louis, MO @ 10:30 a.m. CT – VIEW17

Reservoir Forecast:

  • Gavins Point Dam
    • Average releases last month – 28,900 cfs
    • Current circulation rate – 30,000 cfs (as of September 1)
    • Expected rejection rate – 30,000 cfs (month of September)
    • Reservoir level at the end of August – 1206.8 feet
    • Expected reservoir level at the end of September – 1207.5 feet
    • Notes: Discharges will be adjusted as needed to meet all downstream navigation targets.

  • Fort Randall Dam
    • Average releases last month – 28,100 cfs
    • Reservoir level at the end of August – 1354.9 feet
    • Expected reservoir level at the end of September – 1353.7 feet
    • Notes: Discharges will be adjusted as necessary to maintain the desired reservoir elevation at Gavins Point.

  • Big Bend Dam
    • Average releases last month – 28,800 cfs
    • Expected Average Reject Rate – 27,000 cfs
    • Expected tank level – 1420.4 feet

  • Oahe Dam
    • Average releases last month – 29,600 cfs
    • Expected Average Reject Rate – 27,000 cfs
    • Reservoir level at the end of August – 1596.0 feet
    • Expected reservoir level at the end of September – 1593.6 feet

  • garrison barrage
    • Average releases last month – 21,100 cfs
    • Current release rate – 21,000 cfs
    • Expected average rejection rate – reduce to 14,000 cfs by mid-September
    • Reservoir level at the end of August – 1835.6 feet
    • Expected reservoir level at the end of September – 1834.2 feet

  • Fort Peck Dam
    • Average releases last month – 7,800 cfs
    • Current release rate – 7,800 cfs
    • Expected average rejection rate – reduce to 4,000 cfs by mid-September
    • Reservoir level at the end of August – 2221.0 feet
    • Expected reservoir level at the end of September – 2220.4 feet

The projected reservoir flows and elevations discussed above are not definitive. Additional precipitation, lack of precipitation, or other circumstances could cause adjustments to reservoir release rates.

The six main power stations produced 886 million kWh of electricity in August. Typical energy production for the month of August is 1,011 million kWh. Power plants are expected to produce 7.3 billion kWh of electricity this year, compared to a long-term average of 9.4 billion kWh.

To view detailed three-week release forecasts for major dams, go to

Pool elevation (feet above mean sea level) Stored water (1,000 acre-feet)
As of August 31 Variation in August As of August 31 % of the 1967-2020 average Variation in August

  • Fort Peck 2221.1 -1.1 12,249 84 -222
  • Garrison 1835.6 -2.4 17,175 96 -724
  • Ahoy 1596.0 -2.2 15 371 87 -651
  • Large bend 1420.7 -0.2 1673 98 -12
  • Fort Randall 1354.9 0.0 3,401,102 +8
  • Pointe Gavins 1206.8 +0.6 345 88 +12

Total 50,214 90 -1,589

Average release in 1,000 cfs Release in 1,000 acre-feet Production in millions of kWh

  • Fort Peck 7.8 479 74
  • Garrison 21.1 1,296,197
  • Ahoy 29.6 1,821,262
  • Big bend 28.8 1,773 97
  • Fort Randall 28.1 1,727,181
  • Pointe Gavins 28.9 1,778 73

Total 884

Russo-Ukrainian War: Weekly Recap and Looking Ahead (September 5)

September 5, 2022

Montana Economy

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As the week begins, here’s a preview and roundup of the main developments from the past week.

What to watch this week

On Monday, Brussels is hosting a meeting of the EU-Ukraine Association Council, whose agenda includes European Union support for Ukraine in the face of the Russian invasion and Ukraine’s application for membership of the block.

On Tuesday, the United Nations Security Council is expected to meet, at Russia’s request, to discuss the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine following recent attacks, breakdowns and an international inspection of the plant.

Additionally, Boris Johnson’s tenure as UK Prime Minister is coming to an end. He won the praise and affection of Ukrainians as a strong supporter of Kyiv.

And Russian President Vladimir Putin is due to visit the Vostok military exercises in eastern Russia.

On Wednesday, the UN Security Council is to discuss forced displacement in Ukraine, as announced by France.

On Thursday, US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield will outline Washington’s priorities at the UN General Assembly later this month. On Saturday, she will address global food security, which has also been affected by the war.

EU energy meetings are due to hold an extraordinary meeting on Friday following spikes in prices largely due to fallout from the war in Ukraine. In addition, EU economics and finance ministers and heads of central banks will also hold an informal meeting.

On Sunday, Russia holds gubernatorial elections in more than a dozen regions.

Meanwhile, security analysts will be watching developments as Ukraine’s counteroffensive in the south enters its second week.

what happened last week

August 29: Ukraine launches a counter-offensive in the south areas captured by Russian forces early in the war.

August 30: Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev is dead at 91 years old. An interpreter who worked with him later told Reuters that Gorbachev was “shocked and bewildered” by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Putin did not attend the September 3 burial ceremony and the Kremlin gave him only limited state burials.

UNESCO said it supports Ukraine’s application for Odessa listing as a World Heritage Site.

August 31: EU countries decided to suspend visas for Russians but has not been the subject of an outright entry ban.

September 1st : international atomic energy agency inspectors visited Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine, after a delay and attacks en route to the Russian-occupied factory.

The new from Ukraine the school year has started in the middle of a war. While some schools have started in person, most will try to hold classes online. More than 2,000 learning centers, from kindergartens to universities, have been damaged or destroyed, according to the Ministry of Education.

Russia has launched Vostok 2022, a week of military exercises with other countries. Some analysts say the drills reflect Moscow’s deepening ties with China and India.

September 2: President Biden asks Congress to approve 11.7 billion dollars for Ukraineincluding $7.2 billion for military spending and $4.5 billion for direct economic support.

September 3: The besieged Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant was again destroyed its last external power line, but was still able to run electricity through a reserve line. Russia and Ukraine have accused each other of bombing the region.

Russian bombings hit Kharkiv in Ukraineto the northeast, and Mykolaiv to the south.

September 4: John Sullivan steps down as US Ambassador to Russia and will retire from public service, the US Embassy in Moscow announced. He was nominated in December 2019 by then-President Donald Trump and stayed on through a tumultuous time. Elizabeth Rood becomes charge d’affaires of the embassy until the arrival of Sullivan’s successor.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal visited Germany and spoke with its leaders about the war, Russian sanctions and Ukraine’s arms needs.

In depth

Ukraine’s southern offensive relies on heavy weapons. The soldiers say there are not enough.

Along the frontlines in eastern Ukraine, cut off from its resources, a resilient city holds firm.

What it is for Ukrainians who work in a nuclear power plant under Russian occupation.

Russian efforts to break up European energy unity appear to be failing, at least for now.

As inspectors leave Ukraine’s nuclear power plant, the mayor of a nearby town harbors high hopes.

What inspectors are looking for at Ukraine’s war-damaged Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant.

A Ukrainian neurologist from Kyiv returns with NPR, saying dozens of Western medical professionals have offered help since the first interview.

On the border between Latvia and Russia, the line lengthens and shortens.

A massive military aid package to Ukraine signals that the United States is at war for the long haul.

Special report

Russia’s war in Ukraine is changing the world: see its ripple effects around the globe.

Previous developments

You can read past recaps here. For context and more in-depth stories, you can find more NPR coverage here. Also, listen and subscribe to NPR Ukrainian state podcast for updates throughout the day.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To learn more, visit


How to Start an LLC in Montana (2022 Guide) – Forbes Advisor

September 5, 2022

Montana Loans

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In the early stages of establishing an LLC in Montana, you must first manage some key details. Please read the following sections to know what to do before submitting LLC documents.

Create an ePass account online

One important thing to note about filing in Montana is that its commercial filing system is completely online. This means that you will need to configure a ePass account with the state before we can do anything. Be sure to handle this before attempting to file documents with the state.

Search and Reserve LLC Trade Name

It’s always a good idea to check the availability of your business name. It would be an unfortunate waste of time and resources to apply for an LLC, only to be rejected because the name is already in use. You can easily avoid this by doing a series of research using the Montana Secretary of State website.

Once you are sure your name is safe to use, log in to your ePass account and complete the online name reservation form. Although not required, it is a great way to ensure that your business name will be available once you have completed your LLC preparation and gone on file. The deposit costs $10 and reserves your name for 120 days. .

Get your own web domain

Before starting a Montana LLC, consider creating and launching your own web domain. A professional website is practically essential in the modern business era. Many potential customers are particularly savvy when it comes to researching companies and products. You’ll want to make it as easy as possible for them to find you online and learn more about your business.

Hire a registered agent

A registered agent is a must for any LLC in Montana. This person or business will receive important legal documents on behalf of the business. It is true that you can act as the registered agent of your LLC or appoint a member to this role. To qualify, the prospective agent must be at least 18 years old and have a physical address in Montana.

If no one respects these stipulations, or if you simply decide it’s too much of a problem, hiring a registered agent is another popular solution. Prices vary, but you can expect to spend anywhere from just under $50 to as much as $300 per year.

States with the most and the least student debt | Personal finance

September 3, 2022

Montana Loans

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In the late 1980s, a high school graduate who wanted to attend college or university was looking at average tuition costs of $15,160 per year for a private, nonprofit school and $3,190 per year for a public college or university. By 2021, that number had jumped to $37,600 for private non-profit colleges and $9,400 for public schools. Once the cost of books, room and board, and other fees are added in, paying for college with a part-time or summer job becomes more and more a thing of the past.

Today’s students are turning to loans instead, leading to a widespread debt crisis. Americans currently owe $1.58 trillion in student loans, which is changing the shape and trajectory of the US economy. Instead of buying cars or homes, many millennials are focused on finding jobs that will allow them to repay their loans without defaulting.

Some states are taking steps to help by adopting a Charter of rights of the student borrower and offer a variety of scholarship and loan repayment programs to qualified graduates. In New York in 2017, for example, New York announced a scholarship program that would provide free tuition at public colleges residents whose families earn less than $125,000 per year.

Stacker reviewed 2022 data from the New York Federal Reserve to determine where student debt is hitting the nation the hardest. In case of a tie, we looked at the number of borrowers in all tied states.

Read on to see where your state falls on the list.

You might also like: Highest Paying Management Jobs

States with the most and the least student debt | Smart Change: Personal Finances

September 3, 2022

Montana Lending

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In the late 1980s, a high school graduate who wanted to attend college or university was looking at average tuition costs of $15,160 per year for a private, nonprofit school and $3,190 per year for a public college or university. By 2021, that number had jumped to $37,600 for private non-profit colleges and $9,400 for public schools. Once the cost of books, room and board, and other fees are added in, paying for college with a part-time or summer job becomes more and more a thing of the past.

Today’s students are turning to loans instead, leading to a widespread debt crisis. Americans currently owe $1.58 trillion in student loans, which is changing the shape and trajectory of the US economy. Instead of buying cars or homes, many millennials focus on finding jobs that will allow them to repay their loans without defaulting.

Some states are taking steps to help by adopting a Charter of rights of the student borrower and offer a variety of scholarship and loan repayment programs to qualified graduates. In New York in 2017, for example, New York announced a scholarship program that would provide free tuition at public colleges residents whose families earn less than $125,000 per year.

Stacker reviewed 2022 data from the New York Federal Reserve to determine where student debt is hitting the nation the hardest. In case of a tie, we looked at the number of borrowers in all tied states.

Read on to see where your state falls on the list.

You might also like: Highest Paying Management Jobs

Younger ‘dreamers’ watch with concern a legal challenge | national news

September 3, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — When Juliana Macedo do Nascimento signed up for an Obama-era program to protect immigrants who came to the country as young children from deportation, she enrolled in the California State University, Los Angeles, moving from a job in housekeeping, child care, auto repair and a construction business.

Now, a decade later, at 36, a graduate school at Princeton University is behind her and she works in Washington as deputy advocacy director for United We Dream, a national group.

“Dreamers” like Macedo do Nascimento, long a symbol of immigrant youth, are increasingly reaching middle age as eligibility requirements have been frozen since 2012, when the Deferred Action Program for Newcomer Arrivals children was introduced.

The oldest recipients were in their early 30s when DACA began and are in their early 40s today. At the same time, fewer people who have reached the age of 16 can meet the requirement of having been in the United States continuously since June 2007.

People also read…

The average age of a DACA recipient was 28.2 in March, down from 23.8 in September 2017, according to the Migration Policy Institute. About 40% are 30 or older, according to, a group that supports DACA.

As fewer are eligible and new registrations have been closed since July 2021 by court order, the number of DACA beneficiaries fell to just over 600,000 by the end of March, according to government figures.

The beneficiaries became owners and got married. Many have US citizen children.

“DACA is not for young people,” said Macedo do Nascimento. “They don’t even qualify anymore. We’re well into middle age.”

Born out of President Barack Obama’s frustration with Congress’ failure to reach an agreement on immigration reform, DACA was meant to be a temporary fix and many viewed it as flawed from the start. Immigration advocates were disappointed that the policy did not include a pathway to citizenship and warned that the need to renew the program every two years would leave many feeling in limbo. Opponents, including many Republicans, saw the policy as legal excess on Obama’s part and criticized it as rewarding people who failed to follow immigration law.

In an effort to insulate DACA from legal challenge, the Biden administration issued a 453-page rule on August 24 that sticks closely to DACA as it was introduced in 2012. It codified DACA as regulation by subjecting it to potential changes after lengthy public comment.

DACA advocates welcomed the settlement but were disappointed that the eligibility age was unchanged.

The rule was “a missed opportunity,” said Karen Tumlin, an attorney and director of the Justice Action Center. DACA, she said, was “locked in time, like a fossil preserved in amber.”

The administration weighed expanding age eligibility but decided against it, said Ur Jaddou, director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, which administers the program.

“The president said to us, ‘How can we preserve and fortify DACA? How do we ensure program security and how best to do so? and it was the decision that was made after a lot of thought and careful consideration,” Jaddou said Monday in Los Angeles.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which is considering challenging DACA from Texas and eight other states, has asked both parties to explain how the new rule affects the program’s legal status.

Texas, in a filing Thursday, said the rule could not save DACA. States admitted that it is similar to the 2012 memo that created the program, but that they “share many of the same flaws.”

The executive has “neither the power to decide the major matters dealt with by DACA, nor the power to confer substantive immigration benefits,” the states wrote.

The Justice Department argued that the new rule — “substantially identical” to the original program — renders moot the argument that the administration failed to follow federal rule-making procedures.

DACA has been closed to new enrollees since July 2021 while the case continues in the New Orleans Court of Appeals, but two-year renewals are allowed.

The uncertainty surrounding DACA has caused anxiety and frustration among aging recipients.

Pamela Chomba, 32, arrived with her family from Peru when she was 11 and settled in New Jersey. She fears losing her job and missing mortgage payments if DACA is found to be illegal. She put off becoming a mother because she doesn’t know if she can stay in the United States and doesn’t want to be a “burden” on her children.

“We are people with lives and plans, and we really want to make sure we can feel safe,” said Chomba, director of state immigration campaigns for

Macedo do Nascimento was 14 when she arrived with her family from Brazil in 2001. She did not see a brother who returned to Brazil just before DACA was announced in 10 years. International travel under DACA is very limited.

Like Biden and many DACA advocates, she believes legislation is the answer.

“Congress is the ultimate solution here,” she said. “(Both sides) keep passing the ball to each other.

The uncertainty affected her, the eldest of three siblings.

“The fear of being deported has returned,” Macedo do Nascimento said, because “you never know when this policy is going to end.”

Sainz reported from Memphis, Tennessee.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

People hate national parks and monuments until they don’t anymore

September 2, 2022

Montana Economy

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Last week, President Trump launched an unprecedented assault on US public lands when he ordered Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to assess whether dozens of national monuments should be canceled or reduced.

Trump was responding to pressure from the Utah congressional delegation, which had long hated the Teddy Roosevelt-era Antiquities Act, the law that gives the president the power to protect lands and waters with physical or cultural attributes. exceptional. Some, but not all, Utahans are upset with President Obama’s creation of the 1.35 million acre Bears Ears National Monument, as well as President Clinton’s 1996 designation of the Grand Staircase National Monument. – Escalante.

The long campaign against the Antiquities Act comes with a lot of searing rhetoric.

When Obama announced the creation of Bears Ears, Utah Senator Orrin Hatch said, “For Utahans in general, and for those in San Juan County, this is an affront of epic proportions and an attack on an entire way of life.

(Never mind that five Native American nations came together to support the monument and that it enjoyed deep support nationwide.)

During the signing ceremony for his new executive order, Trump said he would end the “abusive practice” of establishing national monuments, which he called a “massive federal land grab.”

(The president, who is clearly not a student of history, is apparently unaware that since the Antiquities Act was enacted, every president except George HW Bush has used it. Trump is also unaware of obviously the fact that the lands in question were already under federal control.)

Adding further disinformation to Trump’s statements, Interior Secretary Zinke said some national monuments are “off-limits to public access for grazing, fishing, mining, multiple uses, and even outdoor recreation”.

(Zinke—who, at a White House press conference the day before the order was signed, boasted that “no one loves our public lands” more than he does—should know. national monuments allow public access, and almost all of those in question permit outdoor recreation, including fishing, camping, hiking, and even hunting in some designations Livestock grazing is generally permitted where it existed before. The most commonly prohibited activities are logging, oil and gas drilling, mining, and sometimes areas are closed to off-road vehicles.)

Tell Home Secretary Ryan Zinke that our national monuments were created with overwhelming public support and must remain protected.

If all of Hatch’s, Trump’s and Zinke’s speeches sound predictable, that’s because you’ve heard them before. The anger directed at national monuments is history repeating itself. Secretary Zinke’s statement that “in some cases, monument designation may have resulted in lost jobs, lower wages and reduced public access” echoes arguments long made against parks and monuments. For more than a hundred years, voices have been raised against the “surpassing” of distant authorities.

But the predicted calamities almost never materialize. And the same voices that once warned of economies being destroyed by land protection are coming to understand that there is more value in protecting a place than stripping it of minerals and trees. There have always been people who hate parks and monuments, until they come to love them.

According to Thomas Power, a retired economist from the University of Montana, many people, when they think about land conservation, suffer from a sort of “rear-view mirror” effect. We look at which industries have boosted our economies in the past, but we often don’t know what is currently fueling our economies, let alone what might be important in the future. “Not only are there economic opportunities that come with protected lands, including tourism-related business ventures, but land protection has other less direct economic benefits,” Power wrote. “Wilderness and park designation create quality of life attributes that attract residents whose incomes do not depend on local employment in commercial material extraction activities from the natural landscape, but choose to relocate to a area to take advantage of its amenity values.”

This hindsight effect has always been one of the challenges of the conservation movement. It is only with hindsight that the protection of a place seems obvious; At the moment, any decision to protect the earth from our immediate needs requires a certain amount of courage.

Looking back, it is therefore instructive to look at various parks and monuments and remember how locals reacted to them when they were first established and how they perceive them now. A little history might give Trump, Zinke and others some perspective — and maybe even cool their histrionics.

yellowstone national park

Bison in a snowstorm, Blacktail Plateau, Yellowstone National Park

So: Opposition to parks and other protected lands began with the first-ever federal land withdrawal. When Congress declared the upper Yellowstone River the nation’s first national park in 1872, local reception to the news was negative. Montana’s Editors Helen’s Gazette said: “We consider the adoption of the law [to protect the area] as a great blow to the prosperity of the towns of Bozeman and Virginia City.

Now: Anyone who’s visited Bozeman recently knows it’s a prime location for new businesses and independent entrepreneurs out west, in part because of its proximity to Yellowstone National Park. Indeed, a recent economic study by Headwaters Economics found that visitors to Yellowstone in 2015 generated more than $110,000,000 in revenue for Montana’s economy.

National Monument/Grand Canyon National Park

Inner Colorado River Gorge from Tuweep Overlook, Grand Canyon National Park

So: In the 1880s, three bills to protect the canyon as a national park failed to gain traction in Congress due to local opposition. The Sun Williams A northern Arizona newspaper captured the common sentiment of the time when it editorialized that the idea for the national park represented an “evil, diabolical plan”, and that whoever spawned such an idea must have been ” nursed by a sow and raised by an idiot”. . . . The destiny of Arizona depends exclusively on the development of its mineral resources. In 1908, President Teddy Roosevelt used the Antiquities Act to establish the Grand Canyon National Monument. The Arizona congressional delegation was baffled by Roosevelt’s statement and succeeded in preventing any federal funding for park operations and attempted, unsuccessfully, to legally challenge Roosevelt’s monument designation.

Now: Local attitudes regarding the value of Grand Canyon National Park had reversed dramatically in 1994, when the Republican Congress shut down the federal government, including national park operations. Fearing a loss of tourism dollars, the state of Arizona offered to pay the costs of keeping Grand Canyon National Park open to the public. In 2016, Representative Raul Grijalva and conservation groups were urging President Obama to establish a Grand Canyon National Heritage Monument around the park. Some 80% of Arizona residents supported the idea.

Mount Olympus National Monument/Olympic National Park

Mount Olympus covered in glaciers, Olympic National Park

So: There was significant local opposition when President Teddy Roosevelt established a national monument on Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula in 1909. Commercial logging interests were particularly angry. MJ Carrigan, the Seattle tax collector, railed against the monument, which became a national park under Franklin Delano Roosevelt:[We] would be silly to let a bunch of insane sentimentalists monopolize the resources of the Olympic Peninsula in order to preserve its landscape.

Now: US Representative for the region, Derek Kilmer, has proposed legislation to add additional areas around Olympic National Park. He’s a local and says he can’t imagine the area without the park. “As someone who grew up in Port Angeles, [Washington]I’ve always said that we don’t have to choose between economic growth and environmental protection.

Jackson Hole National Monument/Grand Teton National Park

Mount Moran reflected in Leigh Lake, Grand Teton National Park

So: When FDR used the Antiquities Act to create Jackson Hole National Monument (precursor to Grand Teton National Park), locals went nuts. Some feared that Jackson was becoming a “ghost town”. Wyoming’s congressional delegation introduced legislation to remove the monument.

Now: Today, the “ghost town” of Jackson is home to 22,000 “ghosts” and Teton County is Wyoming’s wealthiest county, with an unemployment rate of 2.6% and a median household income of 75,325. dollars, compared to $58,804 for Wyoming.

Glacier National Park

Mountain goat at Logan Pass Continental Divide, Glacier National Park

So: When Glacier was first protected as a national park in 1910, the Kalispell Chamber of Commerce officially opposed designation of the park, fearing the park would impede oil, gas, and logging operations. Residents submitted a petition to the federal government in 1914 to dismantle the park, arguing that “it is more important to provide homes for a land-hungry people than to lock up the land for a rich man’s playground than no one will or will ever use. .”

Now: Today, the same Kalispell Chamber of Commerce boasts of having the “best backyard in the country.” Half an hour to the east lies the rugged grandeur of Glacier National Park. And contrary to the claim that “no one will or will ever use” the park, according to the National Park Service, nearly 3 million people visited Glacier National Park in 2016.

Arches, Bryce Canyon, Capitol Reef and National Monuments/Zion National Parks and Canyonlands National Park

Looking from the Dollhouse to the Maze in Canyonlands National Park

So: Many national parks that anchor southern Utah’s economy, including Zion, Bryce Canyon, Arches, and Capitol Reef, were first protected in the 1920s and 1930s as national monuments. In the 1960s, efforts to make these places national parks and to create a Canyonlands National Park met with strong resistance from the oil and gas industry, ranchers, and the Utah senator. Wallace F. Bennett, who in 1962 predicted, “All commercial use and commercial activity would be forever banned and nearly all growth in southern Utah would be forever stunted.

Now: When congressional Republicans shut down the federal government in the fall of 2013, Utah state officials raced to keep the state’s five national parks open. The move came with a hefty price tag – around $167,000 a day to run the parks. In a 2014 speech to the Senate, Senator Hatch said, “We owe a debt of gratitude to the people, elected officials and citizens, who had the foresight to recognize the value of Canyonlands and created the park 50 years ago. year.

Coinbase investigates network payment delays

September 2, 2022

Montana Lending

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Ethereum-based asset management protocol Babylon Finance will shut down completely in November after it failed to recover from the $80 million exploit on Rari Capital in April, Coindesk wrote.

Rari has made it so users can contribute and borrow any asset from its Fuse pools to earn returns, allowing users to create their own pools with Ethereum-based assets.

Babylon stored around $30 million in many cryptocurrencies at its peak, among the major lending pools on Rari.

In other news, has backed out of a five-year sponsorship deal worth $495 million with the UEFA Champions League, which is Europe’s elite soccer league, Coindesk wrote.

The deal had apparently been agreed in principle and would have seen take over as sponsor from Russian state-owned energy company Gazprom. UEFA canceled Gazprom’s contract in March after Russia invaded Ukraine.

Additionally, a date will soon be set for the distribution of funds from former crypto exchange Mt. Gox, Coindesk wrote, which will see creditors reimbursed for a 2014 hack that lost 850,000 bitcoins.

A court document says the date will be determined “in due course.” Creditors were given a September 15 deadline to make or transfer a claim.

Creditors will receive a base payment initially and can choose to receive the rest as an early lump sum payment or as a later payment after the end of the legal proceedings.

Additionally, former CFTC Commissioner Jill Sommers now sits on the board of FTX US Derivatives, according to a press release.

FTX US Derivatives is regulated by the CFTC. FTX US Derivatives was established in 2017 as LedgerX and made crypto-related options and swap contracts available to investors 24/7. Sommers hailed the company as being “at the forefront of bridging the gap between traditional and digital assets while staying true to its founding principles of transparency and leading the charge to become the most trusted digital asset exchange.” regulated in the world”.

Finally, Coinbase is reportedly addressing an issue where multiple networks have had issues with deposits and withdrawals, the exchange said at 12:52 a.m. ET, Seeking Alpha wrote.

But the notice was removed at 1:20 p.m. ET. The company said it fixed an issue that caused processing delays.

For all the PYMNTS crypto coverage, subscribe to the Daily Crypto Newsletter.


About: Results from PYMNTS’ new study, “The Super App Shift: How Consumers Want To Save, Shop And Spend In The Connected Economy,” a collaboration with PayPal, analyzed responses from 9,904 consumers in Australia, Germany, UK and USA. and showed strong demand for one super multi-functional app rather than using dozens of individual apps.

We are always looking for partnership opportunities with innovators and disruptors.

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As Montana celebrates the holiday weekend, here’s how we work.

September 1, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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It’s the last big weekend of summer.

As Labor Day approaches and we prepare to celebrate a three-day weekend and say goodbye to summer, it’s time to reflect. Labor Day has been around since 1882 and was created to celebrate the worker. Of course, over time we focus more on going to the lake, eating, drinking and spending time with family and friends.

Being curious by nature, I began to wonder what the Montanese did for work. What are the top industries when it comes to employment in Montana?

According to World Atlas, the top industries for employment in Montana are agriculture and forestry. The report says Montana has about 28,000 farms across the state covering nearly 60 million acres that are used for agriculture. Forestry is important in the western part of the state, with over 13 million acres of woodland.

Tractor in a field on a rural Maryland farm at sunset with sunbeams

Then health care.

The healthcare industry is one of the fastest growing industries in the state with approximately 70,000 Montana residents working in the field. In fact, future projection models suggest that those looking to start a career with good pay and a high likelihood of advancement might consider going into healthcare.

The energy industry is also important in Montana. Montana produces energy in the form of coal, oil, wind, solar, and hydroelectric power, and while some people would like to see the state move away from our reliance on fossil fuels, that doesn’t seem to be happening. anytime soon.

Railway tanks
Brian Brown

Here in Montana, we make things, so it’s no surprise that manufacturing is a big part of the state’s economy. Some of the things we produce here in the land of the big sky go hand in hand with the industries mentioned above. Some of the products made here in Montana include wood products, alcohol, pharmaceuticals, auto parts, farm equipment, and several outdoor recreation products.

Finally, we have tourism and recreation.

We all know that tourism is big business for Montana, especially during the summer months when millions of people travel to visit places like Yellowstone and Glacier National Park. This has a direct impact on several communities in the state in terms of people staying in their hotels, eating in their restaurants, and shopping in their stores.

Yellowstone National Park.Wyoming.USA

Of course, there are many other industries that employ Montanese, and whatever you do for work, I wish you a very happy Labor Day weekend.

Beware of these 50 jobs that could disappear in the next 50 years

CHECK IT OUT: Discover the 100 most popular brands in America

US exploits historic surpluses for tax cuts and refunds |

August 31, 2022

Montana Economy

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Fueled by the largest surplus in state history, Missouri’s Republican-led legislature has devised a $500 million plan to send one-time tax refunds to millions of households. In a shock to some, GOP Governor Mike Parson vetoed it.

Parson’s Objection: He wanted a bigger, longer lasting tax cut.

“Now is the time for the largest income tax cut in our state’s history,” Parson said as he called lawmakers back to a September special session to consider a permanent $700 tax cut. millions of dollars.

Upon its likely approval, Missouri will join at least 32 states that have already passed some type of tax cut or refund this year — a stunning outpouring of billions of tax dollars to the people. Idaho lawmakers are meeting Thursday to consider more tax relief, and Montana lawmakers are also considering a special session for tax relief.

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Thanks to federal pandemic assistance and their own rising tax revenues, states have cut personal and corporate income tax rates, expanded tax deductions for families and retirees, cut property taxes, eliminated sales taxes on groceries, and suspended fuel taxes to offset inflation. peak prices. Many also provided immediate tax refunds.

Republicans and Democrats joined the trend of lower taxes in a year of midterm elections.

Yet divisions have emerged over how far to go. While Democrats have generally favored targeted tax breaks and one-time rebates, some Republicans have pushed for permanent income tax rate cuts that could lower tax bills — and state revenues — for years to come. Parson describes it as “real and lasting relief”.

Some budget analysts warn that permanent tax cuts could strain states in a future recession. The US economy has contracted for two consecutive quarters this year, encountering an informal sign of recession.

“Quite simply, relying on the current surplus to fund permanent tax changes is neither fiscally viable nor fiscally responsible, and will ultimately require cuts to state services,” said Amy Blouin, President and CEO of the Missouri Budget Project, a nonprofit organization that analyzes tax policy.

For some states, the current surpluses are unlike anything they have seen before.

Fiscal 2022, which ended June 30 for most states, marked the second straight year of strong tax revenue growth after economic shutdowns triggered declines at the start of the coronavirus pandemic. Many states reported their largest-ever surpluses, according to the National Association of State Budget Officers.

Nationally, inflation is at its highest level in 40 years, pushing up the prices of most goods and services and squeezing incomes.

At least 15 states have approved one-time rebates on their surpluses, including 10 led by Democratic governors and legislatures, four by Republicans and one — Virginia — with shared partisan control.

Although often popular, tax refunds do little to fight inflation and “may actually be counterproductive” by allowing additional consumer spending on scarce items and thus contributing to the rise prices, said Hernan Moscoso Boedo, an economist at the University of Cincinnati.

Yet large surpluses coupled with inflation make rebates a tempting option for politicians, especially during an election year.

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, a Republican facing a re-election challenge from Democrat Stacey Abrams, has been among the most aggressive tax-relievers. He signed a law gradually reducing the income tax rate from 5.75% to 4.99%. He also signed a measure providing for a $1.1 billion tax refund, with up to $250 for individuals and $500 for couples. He proposed an additional $2 billion in income and property tax refunds.

Idaho Governor Brad Little, a Republican, recalled the Legislature for a special session beginning Thursday to consider more tax relief.

He proposes using part of the state’s projected $2 billion budget surplus for a $500 million income tax refund this year. He also wants to cut more than $150 million a year by creating a flat tax rate of 5.8% starting next year. It comes after the state cut the top tax rate in each of the past two years.

Montana lawmakers are debating whether to call a special session later in September to provide tax relief from a budget surplus. One proposal calls for rebates of $1,000 to homeowners who have paid property taxes in the past two years. It would also offer income tax refunds of $1,250 for individuals and $2,500 for couples.

The Republican House and Montana Senate Majority Leaders said in a joint statement that the discounts would provide assistance “as soon as possible for expenses such as gas, groceries, school supplies and much more. “. But some lawmakers, including term-limited GOP Rep. Frank Garner, have expressed reluctance.

“My first concern is whether this proposal is driven by an impending emergency or by those who want to write voters checks because their emergency is only an impending election,” Garner wrote in an op-ed column.

‘Soo Burger Month’ a tasty way to support local charity

August 31, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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Throughout September, 10 local restaurants will donate a portion of their specialty burger sales to the Blake Ave. of Habitat for Humanity.

Calling all burger lovers!

For a second consecutive year, Habitat for Humanity Sault Ste. Marie is bringing back “Soo Burger Month,” a tasty fundraiser that runs through September that encourages residents to eat burgers at local restaurants to support charities.

Ten restaurants in the city have reserved a specialty burger on their menu and will donate at least one dollar to the nonprofit housing organization for each burger sold.

Habitat Marketing Coordinator Chelsey Foucher says the event is a fantastic opportunity for Saultites to help others in the community who are in dire housing need.

“We’re trying to establish more signature events,” she said. “Last year was a bit of a trial run, so we’re really looking forward to getting this fundraiser going and making it work.”

Restaurants participating in Soo Burger Month include Soo Blaster, The Soup Witch Cafe, Ernie’s Coffee Shop, Montana’s BBQ and Bar, Shooters Downstairs Lounge, Getaway Restaurant (in Gateway Casinos), Center Ice Bar and Grill, The Root, Q-Patio (at the Quattro) and Uncle Gino’s cafe.

“Their support is super important,” says Foucher. “Coming out of the pandemic, we knew restaurants were struggling. We wanted to do something that would support us, but also support local businesses. Giving restaurants this opportunity to participate and support Habitat and their community is mutually beneficial, and it also creates a bit of friendly competition.

Money raised throughout September will be used to build a fully accessible four-bedroom home on Blake Avenue for a Syrian refugee family who has lived in Canada since 2016.

“The father uses a wheelchair and their two-bedroom apartment is not accessible or big enough for all five,” says Foucher. “This fundraiser will help house them by the end of the year.”

The ten participating restaurants will also compete for the Best Burger Award and the Most Burgers Sold Award.

Residents are encouraged to use the Burger Passport to keep track of their selections. Entrants are also encouraged to share photos of their burger on social media using the hashtag #SooBurgerMonth.

A full press release is below:


September is Soo Burger Month!

Habitat’s second annual Soo Burger Month fundraiser is about to begin!

Soo Burger Month, presented by, is a citywide fundraiser taking place throughout the month of September that encourages Saultites to eat burgers in support of charities.

Using the Burger Passport, generously sponsored by Cliffe Printing, Habitat will guide you to ten participating restaurants featuring a creative new burger (or a tried-and-true burger) from which at least $1 will be donated to Habitat for Humanity. Sault Ste. Marie & Area per burger sold.

Ten local restaurants are participating in this year’s fundraiser: Soo Blaster, The Soup Witch Cafe, Ernie’s Coffee Shop, Montana’s BBQ and Bar, Shooters Downstairs Lounge, Getaway Restaurant (in Gateway Casinos), Center Ice Bar and Grill, The Root , Q-Patio (at the Quattro) and Café de l’oncle Gino.

Last year, Soo Burger Month raised just under $3,000 to support the organization’s affordable homeownership program. Habitat hopes to see a modest increase from last year, after making some minor adjustments to the event based on some of last year’s feedback.

“We’ve decided to push fundraising back a month to September, so fans can enjoy their burgers during patio season,” says Chelsey Foucher, Fundraising and Marketing Coordinator.

The Burger Passport shows restaurant locations, the burgers they offer, and the amount donated to Habitat per burger sold. Burger Passports can be downloaded online or picked up at any of the following locations starting September 1:

  • Habitat ReStore (32 White Oak Drive)
  • Getaway Restaurant at Gateway Casinos (30 Bay Street West)
  • Ernie’s Cafe (13 Queen Street East)
  • Soo Blaster (345 Queen Street East)
  • Q-Patio by Quattro (229 Great Northern Road)
  • Montana BBQ and Bar (89 Foster Drive)
  • Main Floor Shooters’ Lounge (68 Dennis Street)
  • Center Ice Bar & Grill Inc. (285 Northern Ave East)
  • The Root (85 Old Hwy 17 N)
  • The Soup Witch (215 Fourth Line East)
  • Uncle Gino’s Cafe & Ristorante (56 Second Line West)

Fundraising will also be complemented by a small contest. The restaurants are competing to win the award for best burger and the award for most burgers sold – won by Ernie’s Coffee Shop and Getaway Restaurant respectively in 2021.

“We’d love for people to take photos and post their #SooBurgerMonth adventures on social media to help us spread the word,” says Foucher, “and don’t forget to tag Habitat!”

Funds raised by Soo Burger Month 2022 will support Habitat’s fully accessible Blake Avenue construction, which will house a family of five by the end of the year.

Foucher pointed out that it’s a common misconception that Habitat is giving away homes for free when, in fact, they’re selling them to eligible families.

“The families we work with volunteer 500 hours and buy their homes at fair market value with an affordable mortgage from Habitat. Our program removes the hurdle of a large down payment and ensures that mortgage payments do not exceed 30% of their household income,” explained Foucher. “Their mortgage payments then go into our ‘Fund for Humanity’ which exists solely to fund future construction.”

With the current Blake Avenue home completed, Habitat plans to build a quintuple on Goulais Avenue in 2023 — the organization’s largest project to date.

You can learn more about Soo Burger Month by visiting or follow Habitat on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

Donations to Habitat’s Affordable Homeownership Program can be made at Companies interested in sponsoring a Habitat home can contact Chelsey Foucher at [email protected]

After Bruen, another judge ends Colorado assault weapons ban

August 31, 2022

Montana Loans

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What you need to know today

NEW from THE TRACE: Survivors who shoot shouldn’t pay their own medical bills.In a new comment, Professor Hugh Gusterson of the University of British Columbia shares a proposal to defray often exorbitant costs for survivors of gun violence. According to a 2017 study, only 12% are able to pay these bills in full. Gusterson turns to auto insurance for an answer. “Americans have accepted the price we pay to live with cars,” he writes. “We have devised an elaborate insurance system to ensure that the medical expenses of people injured by automobiles are paid not by the victims but by the community of automobile owners.” This model, he says, could guide how society pays for victims of gun violence. Read the full opinion piece.

Citing Brownanother federal judge prevents a Colorado municipality from enforcing an assault weapons ban. U.S. District Judge Charlotte Sweeney issued a temporary restraining order against the Boulder County law, which includes a ban on large-capacity magazines. Judge Sweeney wrote that the “plaintiffs establish a substantial likelihood of success” in part because of the Brown the decisions new constitutional test for how federal courts should evaluate gun laws. Another US district judge – also a Democratic presidential candidate – has been sidelined a similar decision last month about the City of Superior’s Assault Weapons Ban. We follow the effects of Brown Case here.

Lawmakers seek answers from company offering interest-free loans for weapons and ammunition. In a letter to the CEO of Montana-based Credova Financial, 18 House Democrats asked the company how it ensures people who use its ‘buy now, pay later’ funding for guns don’t quickly resell them . They also asked if the company knew if customers who had financed firearms had used them to commit acts of violence, and how often people failed to repay those loans. The four-year-old company said approximately three-quarters of the businesses where it provides financing are gun or hunting stores.

Newsrooms are suing Uvalde officials for access to public records. Citing the Texas Open Records Act, The Associated Press and others filed a complaint in Uvalde County to compel the sheriff’s department, school district and city to turn over 911 tapes and other records and documents related to the May shooting at Robb Elementary School. This comes several weeks later a similar trial charged the state Department of Public Safety for violating Texas public information law by withholding information about the police response.

We are up for three more awards! The Online News Association named us among the finalists for its 2022 Online Journalism Awards in:

  • General Excellence in Online Journalism, Small Newsroom
  • Excellence in collaboration and partnerships, for our investigation with VICE News: “Return of the Machine Gun
  • Gather Award in Community-Centered Journalism, Overall Excellence, Micro/Small Newsroom, for in the block

The winners will be announced on September 24 at the 2022 ONA conference.

Data point

~100,000 — the number of new police hires proposed in Joe Biden’s 2023 budget request, which the president highlighted Tuesday in a speech from Pennsylvania on crime and policing. [The New York Times]

August shift work beats historic trends, sought-after soft landing remains intact

August 30, 2022

Montana Economy

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LOWELL, Massachusetts and WESTON, Florida –(BUSINESS WIRE)–UKG:

National overview:

The UKG Workforce Activity Report for August 2022 indicates the total number of shifts worked1 by people in American companies fell 0.8%, indicating modest signs of strength in the labor market for the sixth consecutive month. Overall, August beat historical trends, with the decline in shiftwork reaching only a fraction of the 2.4% drop recorded in August 2021. The hand recovery scale UKG labor rose 2.1 percentage points to 97.6% for the month. The services and distribution sector saw the largest decline (-1.6%), while the healthcare sector remained relatively stable (-0.1%) for the first time since March 2022.

UKG will discuss the results at a live market briefing on Tuesday, August 30 at 10 a.m. ET (US and Canada). Register to attend.


Dave Gilbertson, Vice President, UKG

“The soft landing sought for the labor market seems to continue for another month. Despite significant economic headwinds, labor force activity in August showed signs of relative strength, especially when put into the context of the usual August performance. It looks like we’ve largely avoided the end-of-season dip in labor activity that happens this time every year, as more and more people take vacations before the end of the summer, which which can be attributed to both more people being hired and people taking less time off during uncertain times. . We have now seen six straight months of steady, mild month-over-month weakening.

Industry Analysis:

Shift work in the manufacturing sector declined after growth in June and July:

  • Health: -0.1%

  • Retail trade, hotels and restaurants: -0.1%

  • Manufacturing: -1.1%

  • Services and distribution: -1.6%

Overview of the region:

August beat historical trends, despite slight declines in all regions:

  • Northeast2: -0.1%

  • West3: -0.8%

  • Midwest4: -1.8%

  • South East5: -2.0%

Size of the company :

Shift growth increased as more people were hired and fewer took vacations:

  • Less than 100 employees: -1.6%

  • 101-500: -1.1%

  • 501-1000: -0.8%

  • 1,001-2,500: -1.5%

  • 2,501-5,000: 1.4%

  • Over 5,000: -0.2%


The UKG Workforce Activity Report is a high-frequency index analyzing shift work trends for 4 million people across 35,000 US companies to understand job creation and economic dynamics.

About UKG

At UKG, our purpose is people. As strong believers in the power of culture and belonging as the secret to success, we champion exceptional workplaces and build lasting partnerships with our clients to show what is possible when companies invest in their people. . Born from a historic merger that created one of the world’s leading cloud HCM companies, our unique Life-work Technology approach to human resources, payroll and workforce management solutions for everyone helps more than 70,000 organizations worldwide in all sectors to anticipate and adapt to the needs of their employees beyond just work. To learn more, visit

Footnote 1: “Shifts worked” is a total derived from aggregated employee time and attendance data and reflects the number of times employees, particularly those who are paid hourly or who have to be physically present at a workplace to perform their work, “point”. and “check out” via clock, mobile app, computer, or other device at the start and end of each shift.

Footnote 2: Northeast is defined as Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia and West Virginia.

Footnote 3: West is defined as Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.

Footnote 4: The Midwest is defined as Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas and Wisconsin.

Footnote 5: Southeast is defined as Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.

Copyright 2022 UKG Inc. All rights reserved. For a full list of UKG brands, please visit All other trademarks, if any, are the property of their respective owners. All specifications are subject to change.

Follow UKG on Facebook, instagram, LinkedIn, Twitterand Youtube.

Business briefcases | local |

August 28, 2022

Montana Economy

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Governor says state hits record high for workers

Gov. Greg Gianforte said Montana’s economy continued its strong growth in July, hitting a record high for the number of employed Montanans.

According to data compiled by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Montana Department of Labor and Industry, Montana’s labor force added 1,470 workers in July, while Montana’s total employment increased by 712. workers.

Job creation in Montana increased in July for the 27th consecutive month.

“With our focus on teaching trades and expanding opportunities for well-paying careers, more and more Montanese are returning to work,” Gianforte said in a news release, adding that record job growth alleviates the labor shortage and relieves employers who are hiring.

Private sector payrolls posted a net gain of 500 jobs in July, with health care and social assistance leading with 800 jobs added.

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Montana’s unemployment rate was 2.7% in July as labor force growth continued to outpace total employment, compared to 3.5% in the United States in July.

Electrify Big Sky event held in September

The inaugural Electrify the Big Sky conference will be held at the University of Montana on September 13 in the University Center Ballroom.

Electrify the Big Sky, which focuses on the opportunities and challenges of beneficial electrification, will take place from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Missoula. The cost is $20 for the general public and includes breakfast and lunch. Admission is free for University of Montana students who register using the code provided on the website and present a student ID upon check-in.

Participants can register online at

The Montana Electric Cooperative Association, Montana Department of Environmental Quality, Beneficial Electrification League and the Missoula Electric Cooperative are the organizers of the event.

Conference topics include a panel discussion on electric vehicle adoption in Montana and hands-on sessions on home electrification projects, as well as breakout sessions on utility rate design, adequacy resources and opportunities for beneficial electrification, such as the use of electric water heaters to store energy. Other discussions will focus on beneficial electrification upgrades for new homes; what easy upgrades are available for existing homes, such as programmable thermostats, and an overview of renewable energy sources and home storage options.

There is also an electric vehicle and technology show, where attendees will have the opportunity to get acquainted with electric cars, lawn mowers, a garbage truck and a large tractor for agricultural use.

For more information, contact Ryan Hall at 406-761-8333

Montana joins Lithuania on lasers

The Montana Department of Commerce, in conjunction with the Montana Photonics Industry Alliance and the Lithuanian Laser Association, have partnered to produce virtual seminars to promote education on the laser, photonics, and photonics industries. optics while developing a network of business and academic contacts between Montana and Lithuania. , officials said recently.

“Since its inception, the program’s success has represented more than $4.5 billion in investments in Montana’s economy by adding value to the state’s natural resources, creating well-paying jobs and strengthening our tax base,” Montana Department of Commerce Director Scott Osterman said in an email. .

He said the seminars create a mutually beneficial relationship with Lithuania while promoting bilateral trade and investment in the laser, photonics and optics industries.

The first seminar on light detection and ranging was held in May. This technology uses eye-safe laser beams to create a 3D representation of the environment being studied and is essential for autonomous driving and similar applications.

Last month, the second seminar focused on the topic of quantum telecommunications and materials.

With nearly six times the land area, Montana has a third of the population of Lithuania. In 2020, Montana’s GDP was almost 80% of Lithuania’s; both have similar land use with about two-thirds privately owned.

Montana and Lithuania share a strong laser, photonics and optics industrial cluster that together employs more than 3,000 workers, paying salaries above relative averages, officials said.

Two other seminars are planned. For more information, visit COMMERCE.MT.GOV.

State Ag accepts applications for funding

The Montana Department of Agriculture reminds people that the Grow Through Farming program is accepting applications for this year’s funding round. The application deadline is September 12 at 5 p.m.

MDA staff will host a technical support call for interested parties Monday at noon. Join us by visiting the Department’s website at:

The program was established by the Legislature to strengthen and diversify Montana’s agricultural industry by developing new agricultural products and processes. GTA grants and loans are made by the Agricultural Development Board, a seven-member board appointed by the Governor. GTA funding requires the investment of at least $1 in matching funds for every $1 in grant or loan received.

For more information about the Montana Department of Agriculture, visit

Jacobsen addresses Helena’s Rotary Club

Montana Secretary of State Christi Jacobsen addressed the Rotary Club of Helena Wednesday at the organization’s weekly meeting and provided members with updates from the Secretary of State’s office in which she discussed successes and goals achieved.

Christi Jacobson

Jacobsen touted Montana’s business-friendly climate and low business filing fees, including his recent cut that halved Montana’s business registration fees.

“By cutting red tape, thousands of businesses will benefit from estimated savings of more than $1 million per year. Montana saw record business growth in 2021, and we look forward to seeing this trend continue in the years to come. »

Jacobsen also updated Helena Rotary on the current cycle of midterm elections, including the June primary election reaching record turnout for a midterm primary in Montana.

Club members also received updates from the Montana Land Board, including the August meeting that generated an estimated revenue of more than $100,000 to benefit the Montana Common Schools Trust.

China and the Democratic Republic of the Congo: a gradually deepening bilateral partnership

August 27, 2022

Montana Lending

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Located in sub-Saharan Africa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo is one of the richest countries in natural resources and holds huge untapped deposits of minerals, including cobalt, copper, diamonds and gold, representing approximately $24 trillion. It has vast reserves of tropical forests and has one of the highest hydroelectric capacities in Africa and the world.

Since its independence from Belgian colonial rule in 1960, the DRC has faced complex challenges in state building due to a history of political instability and civil war. Until 1997, it remained under the kleptocratic and dictatorial regime of Mobutu Sese Seko backed by the West amid Cold War bipolarity.

With the advent of the 21st century, moving away from earlier trends of state-centric economic planning and private business ownership and the appropriation of revenues by a corrupt political apparatus, the DRC has turned towards a market-oriented economic system undertaking structural reforms for macroeconomic recovery with the involvement of the Bretton Woods institutions. While economic improvements were observed in 2001-2014, the DRC’s economic situation was sharp deterioration since 2016-2017. Ranked first in the world for poverty and human rights violations, the DRC continues to be one of the least developed countries in the world, as indicated by its position of 175 out of 189 countries in the world. Human Development Index 2020. There is a clear causal relationship between the humanitarian crisis and the current social unrest in the DRC and the exploitation it has suffered during decades of colonial hegemony.

The DRC’s strategic importance to Central Africa and global politics emanates from its potential as an economic powerhouse and its resource wealth amid expansion of global capitalism and demand for resources which has led to growing interest from multinational corporations and neo-imperialist forces such as China. The DRC’s main source of export revenue, its mining sector, has always been controlled by foreign companies. Since 2006, China’s participation in the DRC’s mining industry has been on the rise. The needs of China’s rapidly growing economy have further diverted its attention to the Democratic Republic of Congo, renowned for its prime supply of mineral resources.

Nature and history of China-DRC relations

While Sino-Congolese (DR) associations were established in the 1960s, formal relations have remained intact since 1972. The bilateral relationship exhibits a dualistic nature; on the one hand that of a strategic alliance favoring the objective of China to maintain a considerable presence in Africa and on the other hand, a deepening of the commercial partnership allowing to increase the private investments of China in the DRC. This latter trend can be understood in the context of China’Zou-chuqu (exit) policy; a component of China’s broader economic reform and modernization strategy instituted under Deng Xiaoping aimed at encouraging excess national capital to be invested abroad in order to “deepen access to foreign markets, natural resources and advanced technologies, leading to further growth and stabilization”. China’s strategy vis-à-vis the DRC is shaped by a “resource for infrastructure” approach; where investments in infrastructure projects in resource-rich countries are undertaken in exchange for the exploitation of resources.

China’s investment, aid and development strategy in the DRC has been seen as a profitable opportunity by the Congolese government addressing the urgent need for infrastructure development for socio-economic improvement. Moreover, unlike the approach of Western powers and international financial institutions, China’s development partnership is based on a policy of mutual economic benefits without any interference in countries’ internal affairs or political conditionalities. It does not impose requirements of democracy, adequate human rights conditions, transparent and uncorrupted governance, etc. ; factors that have reached disastrous proportions in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Ipso facto, this acted as a catalyst strengthening Sino-DRC relations.

China-DRC relations are essentially marked by an element of inequality due to China’s status as a globally dominant power juxtaposed with the DRC’s status as a markedly weaker and less developed power. However, strong economic relations are expected to continue due to their mutual interdependence and what China has called win-win arrangement. “For China, the DRC is a secure source of strategic natural resources, a market for its manufactured goods and a space to invest in infrastructure development. For the DRC, China is a source of financing and know-how for its infrastructure, and a source of manufactured products.

An important landmark delimiting economic relations between China and the DRC has been the Sino Congolese Mining (Sicomines pact) in 2008. Through this agreement, the Chinese partners (with a 68% stake) obtained cobalt and copper mining rights in exchange for China’s agreement to carry out infrastructure projects . The “mutually beneficial” deal was envisioned to boost exports, economic growth, incomes and job opportunities in Congo (DR) while building China’s critical mineral resource capacities through mining rights. According to the 2008 OKChina would be the beneficiary of “10 million tonnes (mt) of copper and 600,000 mt of cobalt with an estimated value of US$50 billion over a 25 year period”. It should be noted that the Sicomine agreement paved the way for Chinese investment to enter and capital to flow into the political economy of the DRC. Despite much criticism, over the years cobalt production and the DRC’s macroeconomic performance more broadly have increased, lending weight to the notion of China as a valuable strategic partner for low-income countries. However, the DRC’s increased economic dependence on China carries a plausible threat of an asymmetric relationship serving narrow interests given the high rates of corruption in the DRC. To illustrate further, while the DRC accounted for 70% of the world’s cobalt production capacity as of 2020Chinese investors have taken control of 70% of the DRC’s mining sector through RFI offers (resources for infrastructure) expressive of China’s growing monopoly on the cobalt market.

The DRC and the Belt and Road Initiative

As explained above, the DRC is an integral part of Chinese foreign policy, which is best exemplified by China’s One Belt One Road initiative. It involves a Chinese-led development approach based on investment and infrastructure construction projects from Asia to Europe. Although there have been substantial debates on whether the BRI is merely an economic enterprise or a strategic and coercive tool used by China to expand its political and geo-economic influence, the increase in partnerships with the BRI has accelerated its pace.

In January 2021, Kinshasa served as the venue for inter-state negotiations between the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the PRC and the Minister of State and Foreign Affairs of the DRC which resulted in a Memorandum of Understanding on the BRI. Making the DRC the BRI’s 45th cooperation partner is one of the most recent developments defining Sino-Congolese relations. It also speaks to a steady and deepening bilateral engagement on economic and other fronts between the two countries as we move forward. The DRC’s welcome into the BRI was precipitated by China’s desire to forego DRC’s “interest-free” loans of $28 million in 2020 and China’s decision to pledge US$17 million for development and aid projects. It should also be pointed out that, unlike Africa’s total debt to China of $140 billion, only 5% are interest-free loans. Essentially, by canceling a tiny amount of debt, China seduced the DRC into its BRI by ensuring that Chinese investors in the Congolese (DR) mining industry were incentivized to increase their stakes in the cobalt and copper industry; lucrative raw materials that boost China’s rapidly growing manufacturing and energy capabilities. The latest turn of events secures China’s position as a frontrunner in the immediate future amid the rush for resources and expanding markets.

According to Chinese rhetoric, China is a development and trade partner that contributes to the economic progress of the DRC. However, a critical look at China’s approach in the DRC would highlight its neo-imperialist character. China’s strategy towards nations with relatively weaker negotiating potential has often been associated with the phenomenon of “debt trap diplomacy”; this term is used to describe its predatory lending practices to countries, which makes them vulnerable to Beijing’s demands, which will further China’s long-term geostrategic interests. This has sparked alarming concern in strategic communities in light of the fact that the Democratic Republic of Congo, among other countries in sub-Saharan Africa, accounts for a significant share of China’s lending to the continent according to World Bank International Debt Statistics.

Western concerns are currently centered on Chinese investments in Africa as a possible trigger for another debt crisis in addition to the threat of Beijing’s growing geopolitical influence. Conversely, the ‘debt trap narrative’ positioning China with ‘usurer’ ambitions in Africa has been met with skepticism, as Chinese investment in strategic infrastructure projects is a much-needed option for African countries struggling with booming population growth, slow economic development, lack of job creation and an underdeveloped manufacturing sector. Nevertheless, it must be underline that the the emphasis on Chinese investment in African countries has been marked by a generalization trend perceive the entire continent as a single entity ignoring the diverse socio-economic nature of African countries.

Accordingly, it is critical to conclude on the note that regardless of differing views on China’s engagements with the DRC, the outcomes of Sino-Congolese relations should ultimately be assessed on the basis of holistic socio-economic improvements and improvements stimulated in the Democratic Republic of Congo. In this regard, Chinese development projects in the DRC have not yet come to fruition.

[Image credit: Discott, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons]

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author.

Is America on the brink of another housing meltdown? Mountain West and Sun Belt overvalued by 72%

August 27, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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Property prices could fall by up to 20% next year in a recession, experts warn – and property in some parts of the country is overvalued by up to 72%.

Moody’s Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi was pessimistic about the housing market in May, but has now made his forecast even gloomier, Fortune reported Wednesday.

It comes amid ongoing discussions about whether the United States is already in recession, with the country posting two straight quarters of negative growth – the traditional definition of such a slump.

The news is particularly dire for people who have bought homes in what Fortune calls “bubble” markets, with Boise in Idaho, Charlotte in North Carolina and Austin in Texas all named the most overvalued markets.

But a total of 180 other regions across the United States have properties deemed overpriced, many of which are highly desirable.

They include Los Angeles, Orlando, Seattle and Indianapolis, where properties are all estimated to be overvalued by 30%.

Homes in Houston are overvalued by approximately 34.5%, while properties in Montana are overvalued by 25%.

Picturesque Bend in Oregon – regularly voted one of the best places to live in the United States – has homes overpriced by 43.8%, according to Moody’s, with Billings in Montana overpriced by 25%.

REVEALED: America’s overvalued areas

While Boise, Charlotte and Austin are the top three in the United States for overvalued properties, 180 other areas across the country also have property values ​​that Moody’s says are inflated.

They understand:

Los Angeles/Long Beach: 30.3%

Ogden-Clearfield (Utah): 50.6%

Seattle-Tacoma: 29.5%

Orlando: 30.4%

Denver-Fort Collins: 42.7%

Houston: 34.5%

Indianapolis: 29.5%

Burlington, Vermont 27%

Columbus (Ohio) 29.4%

Grand Rapids, Michigan 45.6%

Vegas: 53.3%

Elbow (Oregon) 43.8%

Billing (Montana) 25%

Rapid City (SD): 44.2%

Atlanta: 35.3%

Charleston: 35.6%

It comes weeks after the US central bank raised the benchmark interest rate to 2.5%, with another increase to 3.4% expected by the end of the year as the Fed attempts to controlling inflation.

These interest rate hikes are expected to push the United States into recession and likely drive down the cost of real estate as it becomes too expensive for many to get a mortgage, making drop in demand.

The most overvalued areas are largely in the western mountain and the sunbelt.

Boise, Idaho – which has seen real estate prices soar during the pandemic as masses swap expensive towns in the Bay Area and wider California for bustling Idaho — is the most overvalued area, Zandi said.

Boise, where the current average home is worth $526,050 according to Zillow, is nearly 72% overvalued, though a recession should only wipe out 20% of home prices at most.

Charlotte, North Carolina is the second most overrated, at 66%, with Austin in third place at 61%.

Charlotte, North Carolina is 66% overvalued, with an average home at $406,137 right now — and Austin, Texas, is 61% overvalued, with an average of $661,337.

Flagstaff, Arizona ($668,845), is 61% overvalued, while Nashville, Tennessee ($460,447) is 54% overvalued and Miami ($552,082) is 34%.

It’s unclear why these overvalued areas should see a maximum of 20% of house prices wiped out, rather than the full amount that experts believe are overvalued.

Only a handful of places were considered undervalued – the most undervalued being Decatur, Illinois, where the average home is $92,129, 6% undervalued.

Montgomery, Alabama ($135,742) is undervalued by 2.6% and Grant’s Pass, Oregon ($418,440) is 3.1%.

The housing stock is at its highest level since April 2009, as sellers struggle to get rid of their property because mortgages have become more expensive and other financial pressures – high gas prices, soaring grocery prices – continue to be felt.

Mortgage rates have nearly doubled since January, hitting 5.13% for a 30-year loan last week, according to Freddie Mac.

The Fed’s efforts to reduce inflation by slowing spending caused a marked slowdown in home sales.

Moody’s Analytics assesses quarterly whether local economic fundamentals, including local income levels, can support local housing prices.

Their latest data, shared with Fortune, found that 183 of the country’s 413 largest regional real estate markets are “overvalued” by more than 25%.

And nationally, house prices are also likely to fall, Zandi said.

He predicts that U.S. house prices across the country will fall over the next 12 months between zero and -5%: a more pessimistic forecast than in June, when Moody’s Analytics expected house prices to fall. US real estate remain unchanged.

If the United States enters a recession, it will be worse: real estate prices will fall by 5 to 10%.

In the 183 overvalued areas, homes could fall 15-20% in a recession.

Moody's Analytics Chief Economist Mark Zandi updated his forecast for the housing market to be even more pessimistic

Moody’s Analytics Chief Economist Mark Zandi updated his forecast for the housing market to be even more pessimistic

The 10 cities that saw the largest share of listing price reductions last month are shown above

The 10 cities that saw the largest share of listing price reductions last month are shown above

Although real estate transactions have declined, prices remain solidly high, with the July national median sale price of $403,800 representing a 10.8% increase from a year ago.

Although real estate transactions have declined, prices remain solidly high, with the July national median sale price of $403,800 representing a 10.8% increase from a year ago.

Moody’s Analytics is not an outlier.

Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, said on Tuesday the outlook for home sales was even bleaker than the Fed had predicted, and the “worse is yet to come” for house prices.

He tweeted on Tuesday that he had been “bearish as hell on housing for months” – meaning he predicted a major market drop.

A bear market is a market where prices are falling and people are selling.

He attached a graph showing the dramatic downturn and said, “Well, I feel vindicated.”

Sales of new single-family homes hit their lowest level in nearly seven years in July, falling 12.6% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 511,000.

Fitch Ratings has said it sees U.S. home prices falling by up to 15%, and Robert Shiller, an economist who correctly predicted the 2008 housing crash, thinks there’s a good chance house prices fall by more than 10%.

A study released Monday by real estate brokerage firm Redfin found that a high share of home sellers lowered their asking price in July, especially in former pandemic boom towns.

Boise saw 70% of registrations reduced in July, compared to just a third a year ago.

In Denver, 58% of real estate listings were reduced last month, while 56% of listings in Salt Lake City were removed from the original asking price.

“Sellers and individual home builders both quickly lowered their prices early in the summer, mostly because they had unrealistic expectations for price and time,” said Boise Redfin agent Shauna Pendleton. .

“They priced too high because their neighbor’s house sold for an exorbitant price a few months ago and expected to receive several offers the first weekend because they had heard stories at this topic,” she added.

A housing estate is seen in Boise, where last month 70% of home listings were reduced below their original asking price as sellers faced their 'unreasonable expectations'

A housing estate is seen in Boise, where last month 70% of home listings were reduced below their original asking price as sellers faced their ‘unreasonable expectations’

In Denver, 58% of real estate listings were reduced last month

In Denver, 58% of real estate listings were reduced last month

Home prices remain solidly high, with July's national median sale price of $403,800 representing a 10.8% increase from a year ago, and just below the record set in June.

Home prices remain solidly high, with July’s national median sale price of $403,800 representing a 10.8% increase from a year ago, and just below the record set in June.

The average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage was 5.13% this week

The average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage was 5.13% this week

“My advice to sellers is to price your home correctly from the start, accept that the market has slowed down and understand that the sale can take longer than 30 days. If someone is selling a nice house in a desirable neighborhood, they shouldn’t need to lower their price.

Although industry data shows home prices remain higher than they were a year ago nationally and in nearly every market, listing discounts have increased significantly as that the high expectations of sellers collide with the cold reality.

Redfin said the national share of homes for sale with price cuts hit a record high in July.

None of the 97 cities included in the analysis had less than 15% of real estate listings that were discounted from their original asking price.

More than half of the cities with the largest share of price cuts — Boise, Denver, Tacoma, Sacramento, Phoenix, San Diego and Portland — were among the 20 fastest-cooling housing markets in the first half of 2022.

Redfin notes that these markets had attracted dozens of eager homebuyers during the pandemic, when tech workers and other white-collar workers shunned more expensive markets and drove up home prices in small towns.

Laredo Oil Inc. (LRDC) Advances Drilling as 2023 Oil Demand Expected to Rise

August 26, 2022

Montana Economy

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  • OPEC releases ‘bullish’ forecast for oil demand to 2023
  • Healthy global economic growth, improving geopolitical developments and the containment of COVID-19 in China contribute to a positive projection
  • LRDC has leased 37,900 acres of minerals in Montana’s Western Williston Basin

Despite a slowing economy and fears of a recession, the oil and gas industry has rebounded strongly throughout 2021, with oil prices hitting their highest level in six years, according to a recent Deloitte report (; OPEC’s recent bullish forecast for 2023 indicates that the upward trend may continue. This is good news for Laredo Oil (OTC: LRDC), an oil exploration and production company that is about to start drilling in Montana.

“OPEC expects global oil demand to rise in 2023, but at a slower pace than in 2022, the producer group said in its first forecast for next year, citing economic growth still robust and progress in containing COVID-19 in China,” Reuters reported ( “In a monthly report released on Tuesday, the…

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Multifamily construction surged in the Ninth District during the pandemic

August 26, 2022

Montana Lending

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If you drive around Sioux Falls, South Dakota, it’s hard to miss the apartment complexes sprouting up all over town.

Butch Warrington, building manager for Sioux Falls, said the city had “an incredible, just incredible number” of multi-family units licensed through July of this year.

Although this year has been exceptional, multi-family construction has been flourishing in the city for several years.

Sioux Falls isn’t the only area experiencing this multi-family bonanza. After nearly a decade of slow growth, most states in the Ninth District have seen residential construction surge, especially during the pandemic.

The total number of licensed housing units in the Ninth District is up 35% from 2019 levels, according to Census Bureau data. Although single-family construction has been healthy, the recent construction surge has been driven primarily by multi-family construction, which is a relatively new trend for the region.

Historically, new single-family homes have significantly exceeded the number of new multi-family units in the Ninth Ward. While there has still been more single-family than multi-family construction during the pandemic, a jump in multi-family growth over the past two years has closed most of that gap in the region.

Multifamily permits now account for almost half of the total housing permits issued in the district (Figure 1). This is the highest share of multi-family permits issued according to data available since 1980.

Loading Table 1…

The multifamily makes significant gains

Following the housing market crash in the mid-2000s, residential construction plummeted in the Ninth Ward and much of the country. In the years that followed, the total number of units permitted grew at a breakneck pace, with modest increases in single-family dwellings while multi-family construction remained largely stagnant.

Minnesota and Wisconsin were the early leaders of the region’s wave of multi-family permits. In Minnesota, the pace of new multifamily construction began to accelerate in 2014, then picked up another speed from 2018 (Figure 2). By 2021, annual multi-family units had grown nearly 2½ times their level of just eight years earlier.

The Twin Cities drove much of the increase, with multi-family permits consistently outpacing single-family permits in the metro area after 2017.

“We have this huge demographic of millennials who are often over-indebted and delaying household formation, [and this is] increasing the demand for rentals,” according to Cecil Smith, president and CEO of the Minnesota Multi Housing Association. “Since Minnesota has a large metropolitan area with good prospects for job growth, the institutional capital [for multifamily construction] started coming here.

Much of the initial activity was in the central cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul – and continues today. Minneapolis has authorized nearly 2,600 units through July, according to Housing First Minnesota.

But there’s also activity happening in the suburbs now, Smith said. “The suburban markets had all of that [multifamily housing] from the 80s and 90s that needed a refresh and new equipment. That’s where the focus is now: a highly appointed luxury product in the suburbs. »

In more rural states like Montana and South Dakota, multifamily growth was supercharged in 2020 after being largely stagnant in the previous decade.

Sioux Falls and Rapid City, South Dakota’s largest cities, have seen multifamily construction records over the past two years. In 2021, Sioux Falls reported a 183% increase in the number of multi-family units over 2019 levels. This trend does not appear to be slowing, as the number of multi-family units permitted through July 2022 has already exceeded the number total units in 2021.

Warrington, the city’s chief building official, hopes the recent surge will increase the city’s low vacancy rate of 3.7%.

“We have issued 2,512 multi-family units this year so far, so I think we would start to get to the point where we will see the vacancy rate go up a bit next year when they become lettable. It will be interesting what we see in a year.

Multifamily construction in Montana has also been strong lately, with new units more than doubling from 2019 to 2021. Single-family construction has been healthy but more stable in recent years. As a result, nearly 56% of all housing units licensed in Montana last year were multifamily, a level not seen since the report began (Figure 3).

Much of this recent growth in Montana and South Dakota has coincided with substantial increases in net migration to the states, where residential construction is surging to meet new demand.

Cheryl Cohen, administrator of the Montana Housing Division at the Montana Department of Commerce, explained how population growth has been a major factor in the recent growth of multifamily construction in the state.

“We had a net migration of just over 22,000 people from April 2020 to July 2021, which is quite significant,” Cohen said. “Builders responded to population growth and associated market demand, and investors saw the potential for good investment returns by looking at the historically high rents here as well as the low interest rates at the time.”

While much of the growth is happening in Montana’s biggest cities, Cohen noted there’s been more interest in building in smaller towns outside of cities.

“We are seeing an increase in construction in many communities like Belgrade, outside of Bozeman, or even in smaller towns like Townsend which are a stone’s throw from Helena,” Cohen added. “Since the immediate downtown area may be more expensive and less affordable, we are seeing this growth happening in adjacent transitional communities.”

Loading Table 3…

Despite the rise, demand still exceeds supply

While the recent surge in residential construction is impressive, it is still not enough to meet the high levels of demand in the area. Many parts of the Ninth District continue to feel the strains of nearly a decade of slowing housing production as home prices and rent levels continue to rise, especially in areas experiencing population growth like western Montana.

Home prices in Montana are currently up 48% from 2019 levels according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency Housing price index, which is the largest increase ever since reports began. Rents are also rising, putting pressure on residents of the state.

“We experienced a 37% rent increase in Lewis and Clark County from the first quarter of 2020 through the second quarter of 2022,” said Cohen of Montana Housing. “There were only four other counties in the entire country with a higher rent increase than that.”

Rent increases exacerbate housing affordability in Montana, according to Cohen, who noted that a quarter of renters in Montana have extremely low incomes.

Minnesota has a similar problem, despite resuming residential construction earlier than other states in the region. According to the Minnesota Housing Finance Agency, the state still lacked about 54,000 homes between late 2018 and early 2020.

“We need to build two to three hundred units at a time, not two or three infill units. It won’t be enough,” said Smith of the Minnesota Multi Housing Association. “We need large-scale housing built here.”

Construction remains solid despite increased challenges

Through June 2022, the total number of units permitted in the district continues to be high, and multi-family units permitted so far exceed single-family permits according to preliminary data from the Census Bureau.

However, ongoing challenges such as labor shortages in the construction industry, supply chain issues that drive up input prices, and recent increases in interest rates could have an impact. chilling effect on residential construction in the ninth arrondissement for the rest of the year.

The Twin Cities are already experiencing a slight slowdown in single-family construction as home prices and mortgage rates rise, dampening demand. However, a July report from Housing First Minnesota shows that multifamily construction is still progressing in the metro, seemingly undeterred yet.

Things aren’t slowing down in Sioux Falls for multifamily construction, either, according to Warrington, who recently met with an architect for a new 150-unit apartment building.

“Things are still pretty busy and active here,” Warrington said. “I thought I might start to see things slow down, especially with rising interest rates, but I haven’t seen it at all yet.”

Abaca and Pacific Valley Bank Partner to Expand Cannabis Banking Options in California

August 25, 2022

Montana Lending

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Abaca accounts now available for lawyers California cannabis operators

SALINAS, Calif., August 25, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Abaca, an industry-recognized financial platform for cannabis operators, and Pacific Valley Bank (OTC Pink: PVBK), are partnering to expand access to cannabis banking services in the California market.

For the first time since the state legalized medical marijuana 26 years ago, legal operators in the industry have access to the powerful combination: a bank aligned with the California community and a leading cannabis fintech provider with a nationally compliant financial services track record. The partnership, Abaca x PVB, provides a single point of access for deposit bank accounts, electronic payment services and cash management options for licensed cannabis businesses in California.

“Abaca has been an agile, reliable and innovative industry leader in helping to connect legal cannabis businesses to financial services,” said Anker Fanoe, CEO of Pacific Valley Bank. “Pacific Valley Bank is a community bank that has served the cannabis industry for over two years, with clients from San Diego at Sacramento. Offering accounts with Abaca allows us to offer a streamlined one-stop shop for current and future commercial cannabis customers and amplifies the work we have already done as one of the first FDIC-insured banks in California working with the legal cannabis industry.”

Only a small portion of banks and credit unions across the country are ready to serve the cannabis industry. As a result, the cannabis industry remains significantly underbanked. Many operators find it difficult to access banking services that meet their needs.

As a result, these companies are very cash-intensive, sometimes even putting employees and the public at risk. Abaca x PVB helps this problem in California standardizing access to modern financial services and cash management for the cannabis industry statewide and nationally.

“Many operators across the state have been let down by unsophisticated, unreliable, and unnecessarily cumbersome banking solutions,” said Dan Roda, CEO of Abaca. “Now operators have access to the best of both worlds: the human touch of a California community bank with a deep understanding of unique market needs and the powerful technology of a financial platform that enables traders to seamlessly manage their finances online. Together, Abaca and Pacific Valley Bank are committed to providing the highest quality banking experience to California the cannabis industry.”

Founded in 2017, Abaca works with its FDIC-insured banking partners to enable traditional banking services for operators ranging from single dispensaries to entire MSOs in 13 states – and now California. Additionally, the Company’s online banking platform offers payment and treasury services to cannabis businesses nationwide. Abaca announced in early 2022 that it had compliantly processed over $3 billion in customer transactions.

About abaca

Abaca provides state-legal cannabis businesses with compliant bank accounts, cash management, electronic payments, and other financial services through its compliant, technology-based cannabis banking platform. Abaca and its partner financial institutions are currently accepting traditional bank account applications in Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma and South Dakota. The company’s banking platform also offers lending and payment processing services to cannabis businesses nationwide. Learn more about

About Pacific Valley Bank

Pacific Valley Bank (member Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation) is a full-service merchant bank that began operations in September 2004 provide exceptional service to customers in California. The Bank offers a wide range of banking products and services, including credit and deposit services to small and medium-sized enterprises, agriculture-related businesses, non-profit organizations, professional service providers and individuals. . For more information, visit

This release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, performance and/or achievements to differ materially from those projected. . Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, economic conditions in all areas in which the Bank operates, including the competitive environment to attract loans and deposits; supply and demand for real estate and the periodic deterioration of real estate prices and/or values ​​in California or other states where we lend; changes in the financial performance and/or condition of our borrowers, depositors, key suppliers or counterparties; changes in our levels of delinquent loans, non-performing assets, loan loss provisions and write-offs; the effect of changes in laws and regulations, including accounting practices; changes in estimates of future reserve requirements and minimum capital requirements based on a periodic review thereof in accordance with applicable regulatory and accounting requirements; fluctuations in interest rates and the market environment; cybersecurity threats, including loss of system functionality, theft, loss of customer data or money; technological changes and the increasing use of technology in banking; the costs and effects of legal, compliance and regulatory actions; acts of war or terrorism, or natural disasters; and other factors beyond the control of the Bank. These forward-looking statements, which reflect management’s beliefs, speak as of the date of this release. Pacific Valley Bank has no obligation to publicly revise these forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.


Barcelona loan French defender Umtiti to Serie A club Lecce | Basketball News

August 25, 2022

Montana Loans

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BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — World Cup-winning French defender Samuel Umtiti will prepare for this year’s tournament in Italy instead of Barcelona after being loaned to Lecce.

Barcelona said on Thursday that the newly promoted Serie A club had taken Umtiti for a season without a purchase option.

The loan deal is Barcelona’s latest move to try to comply with financial rules during their debt crisis and still be able to register new players.

The Spanish team were unable to sign up French Umtiti teammate Jules Koundé since signing the Sevilla defender last month for a fee of around 50 million euros ($50 million).

Umtiti, 28, joined Barcelona six years ago from Lyon and has a contract until 2026. That deal was completed in January, which including taking a pay cut so Barcelona can register new signing Ferran Torres.

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Barcelona then thanked Umtiti for ‘his willingness and the affection he showed towards the club’.

He started in central defense at the 2018 World Cup and scored in France’s 1-0 win over Belgium in the semi-finals.

France are part of a group with Australia, Denmark and Tunisia at the World Cup which begins on November 20 in Qatar.

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Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

Tester Gets $15 Million From Bipartisan Infrastructure Act To Bring High-Speed ​​Internet To Rocky Boy

August 24, 2022

Montana Economy

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Tribal Broadband Connectivity Program to provide broadband infrastructure to 770 homes

As part of its recently signed bipartisan mandate Infrastructure Investment and Employment Act (IIJA) and the Consolidated Appropriation Act of 2021US Senator Jon Tester today got $15,300,356.84 in Tribal Broadband Connectivity Program (TBCP) to the Chippewa Cree Tribe to install broadband infrastructure and bring high-speed Internet to 770 homes on the Rocky Boy Reserve.

Tester was one of four other Democrats and five Republicans to negotiate the bipartisan IIJA, and was the only member of Montana’s congressional delegation to support the legislation.

“High-speed Internet is essential to the success of students, families and small businesses in the 21st century,” says Tester. “For too long, the federal government has ignored the needs of people in Indian Country, which is why I was proud to work with tribal leaders and secure important investments for their communities through my bipartisan infrastructure act. . These resources will allow people to stay connected, continue learning outside of the classroom, and help start and grow small businesses on the Rocky Boy reservation.

TBCP funding will go to the Chippewa Cree Tribe to install fiber and fixed wireless infrastructure to directly connect 770 Native American homes to high-speed fiber-to-the-home internet. The TBCP program was created and funded by the Consolidated Appropriation Act of 2021 and Tester’s IIJA provided an additional $2 billion to the program.

As part of Tester’s bipartisan IIJA, the administration announced its Internet for All initiative, which includes the TBCP, and will build Internet infrastructure, teach digital skills, and provide the technology needed to ensure that everyone in America — including rural communities, communities of color, and older Americans — have the access and skills they need to fully participate in the 21st century economy.

The tester worked across the aisle for months negotiating the Infrastructure Investment and Employment Act with a group of five Republicans, four Democrats and the White House, and he was the only member of the Montana congressional delegation to vote for it. The Tester Act is expected to create more than 800,000 American jobs and reduce costs for businesses by making targeted investments that will strengthen our nation without raising taxes on working families.

A list of the provisions of the legislation can be viewed HERE.

Newark water main broke amid plans to assess risk of water main break

August 24, 2022

Montana Loans

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A water main break that cut off or reduced flow to kitchen sinks, bathtubs and toilets in 100,000 Newark households earlier this month came as city officials prepared to assess the likelihood of ruptures along 30 miles of major transmission lines, city officials told NJ Advance Media. .

A request for proposals to conduct the citywide assessment is expected to be issued in September, according to the Newark Department of Water & Sewer Utilities. The assessment aims to identify weak points in the system and categorize them for replacement repairs to anticipate precisely the type of failure that occurred on August 9, said Kareem Adeem, the director of the department.

The timing of the break and the plans for the evaluation are coincidental, Adeem said. But he acknowledged the pause underscores the need to identify and prioritize potential weak spots, and design repairs or replacements as soon as possible to take advantage of federal funding that will be available over the next five years. from the $1.2 trillion Bipartisan. Infrastructure Act approved by Congress and signed by President Joe Biden last year.

“We had this already planned,” Adeem said at the Friday break site in Essex County’s Branch Brook Park, just across the border from Newark in Belleville.

Accompanied by the supervising engineer of the water and sewerage department, Zehra Karim, Adeem stood at the edge of a 14-foot-deep pit, where utility workers who had already removed the length cast iron pipe broken were preparing to install a water main. family spa size shut off valve.

A lone worker from the city contractor, Lodi-based Montana Construction, stood at the bottom of the pit, where a large steel trench kept the surrounding earth from collapsing on top of him and the two open mouths of a 42 inch cast iron. transmission line deep below the surface of Branch Brook Park Drive.

The pipe had ruptured 10 days earlier, spewing 25,000 gallons of clean water per minute and washing away soil under the park road. Tuesday morning’s main break opened a sinkhole that swallowed a Toyota shortly after its driver fled, then shut off or reduced water pressure in much of the state’s largest city and in several surrounding towns for the next day and a half.

The loss of pressure triggered a boil water advisory that remained in effect until the following Saturday, while city workers handed out bottled water in the sweltering heat.

The precise reason for the break is still under investigation, department officials said this week, with a metals lab analyzing the broken section of the main. It is one of three large parallel pipelines through the park, carrying drinking water from the town’s Pequannock Water Treatment Plant approximately 40 miles to West Milford. The plant sits in Newark’s 37,000-acre Pequannock Watershed, a verdant preserve that spans parts of Morris, Passaic and Sussex counties and is home to the city’s five reservoirs.

Adeem decided to take advantage of the excavation needed to repair the breach by installing a shut-off valve at the same time, in the same hole in the ground. If a main rupture occurred downstream of the valve, he said, it would allow officials to stem the flow of water gushing out of the system faster than crews were able to during the break in this month, minimizing pressure loss.

The valve cost $60,000, in addition to $40,000 to repair the rupture, the department said.

“We will take the opportunity for the future, if a break should occur we can do things much faster,” said Adeem, who runs a water and sewer utility with 195 employees and a budget of $125 million. “We want to be resilient. We can close a valve, which would stop bringing water here, and let the system pressure build up.

The same forward-thinking approach to maintaining the city’s water supply prompted Adeem and his boss, Mayor Ras Baraka, to assess Newark’s major transmission lines.

Adeem said the city hopes to use some of the $50 billion in federal funding earmarked for water and sewer projects under the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill passed by Congress and signed by President Biden last year. But how much Newark will be able to rely on the infrastructure law was in doubt Monday, when Garden State officials were bitterly disappointed by an analysis of how much each state would receive from an initial allocation from the law.

Specifically, the Natural Resources Defense Council’s analysis related to $15 billion earmarked in the law specifically to replace lead service lines, which connect single homes and businesses to municipal distribution lines.

With approximately 350,000 lead service lines still posing a health risk in New Jersey, the $48 million expenditure announced for the Garden State came to $138 per line, the second highest funding rate. bottom of all states after Ohio, and a fraction of the thousands. it costs to replace each row. I

It is, at least, a segment of Newark’s water infrastructure that the city no longer has to worry about. Following a crisis of high lead levels in its drinking water dating back to at least 2016, the city has become a national model for its rapid replacement of more than 23,000 lead pipes with safe copper pipes, a job completed this winter in just over three years after initial projections, it would take almost a decade.

The city received praise from environmental groups, local and state county governments, and Vice President Kamala Harris during a visit to the city. Both Baraka and Adeem testified before Congress on how Newark handled the task, which included state-of-the-art replacement techniques, as well as state and local legislation allowing the city to perform the work on private property without the consent of the owners.

While hoping the federal government will help Newark with any water main replacement projects identified by the upcoming assessment, Adeem said the city would do the work on its own or with other funding if needed.

For example, the Newark projects, including the $190 million lead line replacement program and a $23 million upgrade to the Pequannock mill that began in April, were funded by loans from Essex County and the New Jersey Infrastructure Bank.

“Newark is used to making big plans,” he said,

Newark’s service line replacement has made Adeem and Baraka household names in infrastructure circles across the country, including the Denver-based company American Water Works Association.

Kurt Vause, former chairman of the association’s Water Utility Council, credited Newark’s mayor and water manager for leading an extensive primary assessment that may end up revealing the need for major replacement projects. or maintenance.

He said assessments done proactively rather than in response to pauses are becoming common in major cities across the country, which also hope federal infrastructure money will help pay for needed projects that may be identified.

“It’s an emerging best practice, and it’s becoming much more common due to the upcoming infrastructure law,” said Vause, former water manager for the city of Anchorage, Alaska, where freezing temperatures present a particular challenge.

As infrastructure spending has become a more common topic of public discussion and the added prospect of federal largesse makes it more palatable to taxpayers and elected officials, Vause said water and sewer upgrades may still be a tough sell in the face of competing demands for public spending. .

“It’s a balancing act to try to figure out the best way to continue to serve your service area in a safe way to protect public health,” Vause said. “We can all imagine situations where there’s a lot of pressure on policy makers to maintain the spending line while you have these emerging conditions that need attention.”

A sinkhole in Branch Brook Park in Belville caused by a water main break earlier in the week was dug Thursday to repair the broken main and install a shut-off valve. Tuesday’s break cut off or reduced water pressure for 100,000 households in Newark.Steve Strunsky | NJ Advance Media for

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Gary N. Geisel, head of M&T Bank Co. (NYSE:MTB), sells 533 shares

August 23, 2022

Montana Lending

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M&T Bank Co. (NYSE: MTBGet a rating) Director Gary N. Geisel sold 533 shares of the company in a trade dated Friday, August 19. The shares were sold at an average price of $189.34, for a total value of $100,918.22. Following completion of the transaction, the administrator now directly owns 17,740 shares of the company, valued at $3,358,891.60. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available via the SEC website.

Performance of M&T Bank shares

MTB opened at $184.08 on Tuesday. The company’s 50-day moving average is $169.65 and its 200-day moving average is $172.11. The stock has a market capitalization of $33.03 billion, a PE ratio of 17.11, a price-to-growth earnings ratio of 0.84 and a beta of 0.91. The company has a current ratio of 0.98, a quick ratio of 0.98 and a debt ratio of 0.13. M&T Bank Co. has a 12-month low of $131.42 and a 12-month high of $193.42.

M&T Bank (NYSE: MTBGet a rating) last released its quarterly results on Wednesday, July 20. The financial services provider reported earnings per share of $1.08 for the quarter, missing analyst consensus estimates of $2.75 per ($1.67). M&T Bank posted a net margin of 23.21% and a return on equity of 10.76%. During the same period a year earlier, the company posted EPS of $3.45. On average, analysts predict M&T Bank Co. will post 15.21 earnings per share for the current year.

M&T Bank announces dividend

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 30. Shareholders of record on Thursday, September 1 will receive a dividend of $1.20 per share. The ex-date of this dividend is Wednesday, August 31. This represents a dividend of $4.80 on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.61%. M&T Bank’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 44.61%.

M&T Bank announced that its board had authorized a share buyback plan on Tuesday, July 19 that allows the company to repurchase $3.00 billion of outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the financial services provider to repurchase up to 9.7% of its shares through purchases on the open market. Stock buyback plans are usually an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

Hedge funds weigh on M&T Bank

Hedge funds have recently changed their stock holdings. AIA Group Ltd increased its position in M&T Bank shares by 118.8% in the 1st quarter. AIA Group Ltd now owns 361 shares of the financial services provider worth $61,000 after buying an additional 196 shares during the period. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC increased its position in M&T Bank shares by 1.1% in the 1st quarter. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC now owns 17,175 shares of the financial services provider valued at $2,911,000 after purchasing an additional 184 shares during the period. Arizona State Retirement System increased its position in M&T Bank shares by 2.2% in the 1st quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 35,820 shares of the financial services provider valued at $6,071,000 after purchasing an additional 785 shares during the period. Sciencast Management LP acquired a new position in M&T Bank stock in Q1 worth $1,695,000. Finally, Belpointe Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in M&T Bank shares in the 1st quarter with a value of $112,000. 87.61% of the shares are currently held by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Analysts set new price targets

Several research companies have commented on the MTB. Wedbush raised its price target on M&T Bank to $188.00 in a Friday, July 22 research report. Wells Fargo & Company lowered its target price on M&T Bank from $195.00 to $175.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a Friday, July 1 research note. Citigroup raised its target price on M&T Bank to $200.00 in a Friday July 22 research note. Robert W. Baird upgraded M&T Bank from a “neutral” rating to an “outperforming” rating and raised its target price for the company from $175.00 to $200.00 in a Friday, June 17 research note. To finish, downgraded M&T Bank from a “hold” to a “sell” rating in a Friday, August 12 research note. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and eight have assigned the company’s stock a buy rating. According to data from, the company currently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average target price of $198.71.

About M&T Bank

(Get a rating)

M&T Bank Corporation operates as a bank holding company that provides commercial and retail banking services. The Company’s Business Banking segment provides deposit, lending, cash management and other financial services to small businesses and professionals. Its Commercial Banking segment provides deposit products, commercial loans and leases, letters of credit and cash management services to medium and large commercial enterprises.

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Insider buying and selling by quarter for M&T Bank (NYSE:MTB)

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Daily Financial Regulation Update — Saturday, August 20, 2022 | Paul Hastings LLP

August 22, 2022

Montana Economy

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Major developments

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation

FDIC sends cease-and-desist letters to five companies for making false or misleading crypto-related claims about deposit insurance

August 19, 2022

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has issued letters asking five companies and their officers, directors and employees to cease and desist from making false and misleading statements about FDIC deposit insurance and to take immediate corrective action to remedy such false or misleading statements pursuant to Section 18(a)(4) of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act and Part 328 of the FDIC Rules.

Federal agencies

US Department of Treasury

Treasury Approves Four Additional State Plans to Support Underserved Entrepreneurs and Small Business Growth Through the State’s Small Business Credit Initiative

August 19, 2022

The U.S. Department of the Treasury announced that it had approved plans by the states of Colorado, Oregon, New York and Montana under the state’s Small Business Credit Initiative for funding of up to reach $750 million to expand access to capital for small businesses.

Security and Exchange Commission

Chairman Gensler’s remarks ahead of Reuters Events’ Responsible Business USA 2022

August 19, 2022

Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Gary Gensler spoke ahead of Reuters’ Responsible Business USA 2022 Event.

Commodity Futures Trading Commission

Opening Remarks by Commissioner Kristin Johnson for the CFTC and OMWI Roundtable on Digital Assets and Financial Inclusion

August 19, 2022

Commodity Futures Trade Commissioner Kristin Johnson spoke about digital asset policy, innovation, legislation and regulation during a roundtable at the CFTC.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Blog: Why we’re modernizing the way we collect credit card data

August 19, 2022

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau published a blog post titled “Why We’re Modernizing How We Collect Credit Card Data.”


FINRA Board of Governors Elects Eric Noll as Chairman

August 19, 2022

FINRA’s Board of Governors has elected current FINRA Public Governor Eric Noll as its next Chairman.

Banking Policy Institute

Proposed FDIC Deposit Insurance Rating Increase: A Threat to Small Businesses and the Economy, Based on Outdated Data

August 19, 2022

The Bank Policy Institute, American Bankers Association, Consumer Bankers Association, Independent Community Bankers of America, National Bankers Association, and Mid-Size Bank Coalition of America sent a comment letter to the Federal Deposit Insurance Commission on its proposed deposit insurance assessment rate increase.


bank of england

Article: The size-centrality relationship in production networks

August 19, 2022

The Bank of England has published a staff working paper titled “The Size-Centrality Relationship in Production Networks”.

Document: Firming price inflation

August 19, 2022

The Bank of England has released a staff working paper entitled “Firming up price inflation”.

UK Financial Conduct Authority

FCA warns Buy Now Pay Later companies against misleading ads

August 19, 2022

The Financial Conduct Authority has sent letters to the CEO to companies that offer Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) products stating that, while some deals are unregulated, financial promotions of all BNPL products must adhere to financial promotion rules .

Administrative changes

Vacant jobs

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation

  • President – ​​Vacant (Martin Gruenberg is acting president)
  • Vice President – ​​Vacant

Office of the Comptroller of the Currency

  • Controller – Vacant (Michael Hsu is Acting Controller)

Appointments/Confirmation Hearings

U.S. Treasury Department – Janet Yellen (effective January 26, 2021)

Federal Reserve Board – Jerome H. Powell (effective May 23, 2022)

  • Vice-President Lael Brainard (sworn in May 23, 2022)
  • Vice President for Oversight Michael Barr (sworn in July 19, 2022)
  • Governor Phillip N Jefferson (sworn in May 23, 2022)
  • Governor Lisa D. Cook (sworn in May 23, 2022)
  • Statement by Federal Reserve Board Chairman Jerome H. Powell on his nomination by President Biden (November 22, 2021)
  • Statement by Governor Lael Brainard on her nomination by President Biden (November 22, 2021) (sworn on May 23, 2022)
  • Statement by Treasury Secretary Janet L. Yellen on Federal Reserve Appointments (November 22, 2021)
  • Statement from Secretary Walsh on Federal Reserve Appointments (November 22, 2021)
  • Brown’s Statement on Jerome Powell’s Renomination as Fed Chair (November 22, 2021)
  • Toomey’s Statement on Jerome Powell’s Renomination as Fed Chair (November 22, 2021)
  • Brown applauds Biden’s nomination of Governor Lael Brainard as vice president (November 22, 2021)
  • Brown Applauds Biden Nominees to Fed Board (January 14, 2022)
  • Toomey’s Statement on President Biden’s Fed Nominees (January 14, 2022)
  • Waters applauds appointments of Sarah Bloom Raskin, Lisa Cook and Philip Jefferson to Federal Reserve leadership positions (January 14, 2022)
  • Statement by Treasury Secretary Janet L. Yellen on Federal Reserve Appointments (January 14, 2022)
  • Statement from the Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee Brown regarding the nomination of Dr. Lisa Cook (March 29, 2022)
  • Statement by Ranking Member of the Senate Banking Committee Toomey Regarding the Nomination of Dr. Lisa Cook (March 29, 2022)
  • Statement by Senate Banking Committee Chairman Brown on Nomination of Michael Barr as Federal Reserve Vice Chairman for Oversight (April 15, 2022)
  • Statement by Senate Banking Committee Ranking Member Toomey on Nomination of Michael Barr as Federal Reserve Vice Chairman for Oversight (April 15, 2022)
  • Statement from the Chair of the Senate Banking Committee Regarding the Senate Confirmation of Dr. Lisa Cook (May 10, 2022)
  • Statement by a Ranking Member of the Senate Banking Committee Regarding the Senate Confirmation of Dr. Lisa Cook (May 10, 2022)
  • Jerome H. Powell sworn in for a second term as Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (May 23, 2022)
  • Lael Brainard is sworn in as Vice Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (May 23, 2022)
  • Lisa D. Cook sworn in as a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (May 23, 2022)
  • Philip N. Jefferson sworn in as a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (May 23, 2022)
  • Statement by the Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee ahead of the confirmation vote for Michael Barr (July 13, 2022)
  • Statement by President Biden on confirming Michael Barr as Fed Vice Chairman (July 13, 2022)
  • Statement from CSBS President and CEO on Confirmation of Michael Barr as Vice President (July 14, 2022)
  • Michael S. Barr sworn in as Vice Chairman for Oversight of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (July 19, 2022)

Federal Reserve Bank of New York – John C. Williams (effective June 18, 2018)

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation – Martin Gruenberg (Acting Chair, appointed February 5, 2022)

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau – Rohit Chopra (effective October 12, 2021)

Security and Exchange Commission – Gary Gensler (effective April 17, 2021)

  • LizAnn Eisen joins Corporate Finance Division as Deputy Director of Disclosure Program (January 27, 2022)
  • Lori H. Price named acting director of Office of Credit Ratings; Ahmed Abonamah leaves the SEC (February 1, 2022)
  • Philadelphia Regional Office Director Kelly L. Gibson Leaves SEC; Scott Thompson and Joy Thompson named co-acting office directors (February 11, 2022)
  • Joint Statement by the Chairman and SEC Commissioners on the Senate Confirmation of Jaime Lizárraga and Mark Uyeda (June 17, 2022)
  • CFTC Commissioner’s Statement on the Senate Confirmations of Mark Uyeda and Jaime Lizarraga (June 17, 2022)
  • Jaime Lizárraga sworn in as SEC commissioner (July 18, 2022)
  • Lori H. Price appointed Director of Credit Rating Bureau (August 12, 2022)

Small Business Administration – Isabella Casillas Guzman (effective March 16, 2021)

Commodity Futures Trading Commission – Rostin Behnam (effective December 17, 2021)

  • Kristin Johnson, Commodity Futures Trading Commission Commissioner Candidate (September 13, 2021)
  • Christy Goldsmith Romero, Commodity Futures Trading Commission Commissioner Candidate (September 13, 2021)
  • US Senate unanimously confirms Behnam as president (December 17, 2021)
  • CFTC Chairman Rostin Behnam announces senior staff appointments (January 20, 2022)
  • CFTC Chairman Rostin Behnam Appoints Initial CFTC Leadership (January 25, 2022)
  • Statement by CFTC Chairman Rostin Behnam on the US Senate Confirmations of Christy Goldsmith Romero, Kristin N. Johnson, Summer Kristine Mersinger, and Caroline D. Pham (March 29, 2022)
  • CFTC Commissioner Pham Announces First Staff Appointments (April 22, 2022)
  • CFTC Commissioner Goldsmith Romero Announces Staff Appointments (April 27, 2022)
  • CFTC Commissioner Pham Announces Additional Appointments (May 13, 2022)
  • CFTC Commissioner Mersinger Announces Staff Appointments (May 16, 2022)

Financial Crimes Network

National Administration of Credit Unions – Todd M. Harper

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development – Marcia Fudge (effective March 10, 2021)

Federal Housing Finance Agency – Sandra L. Thompson, (confirmed May 25, 2022)

US Department of Education – Dr. Miguel Cardona (effective March 2, 2021)

PH Customer Alerts

Click here to learn more about our Coronavirus series.

Legislation/legislative updates

Click here to view the full text of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”), Adopted March 27, 2020.

Click here to view the full text of the Expanding Paycheck Protection Program Act of 2020, Adopted April 24, 2020.

Click here to view the full text of the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020, Adopted on June 5, 2020.

Click here to view the full text of the Consolidated Credit Law, 2021, Adopted on December 27, 2020.

Click here to view the full text of the 2021 US bailout plan, Adopted March 11, 2021.

Click here to view the full text of the PPP Extension Act 2021, Adopted March 30, 2021.

Click here to see a current list of bills the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, the House Committee on Financial Services and the House Committee on Small Business.

Governor Glenn Youngkin announces Virginia’s next energy plan is open to public comment and is now accepting ideas and comments for Virginia’s next energy plan – Royal Examiner

August 21, 2022

Montana Lending

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Attorney General Jason Miyares has reached a tentative agreement with opioid maker Endo International PLC and its lenders that would provide up to $450 million to participating states and local governments, ban promotion of Endo’s opioids, and require Endo to hand over millions of documents related to its role in the opioid crisis for publication in an online public archive. The Commonwealth of Virginia should receive at least $9 million.

Tentative settlement with Endo, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Tuesday, August 16, 2022, in the Southern District of New York, resolves allegations that Endo boosted opioid sales using deceptive marketing that minimized the risk of addiction and exaggerated the benefits. Endo, an Ireland-based drugmaker with its US headquarters in Malvern, Pennsylvania, makes generic and branded opioids including Percocet and Endocet, and also made Opana ER, which was taken off the market in 2017. States allege that Endo falsely promoted the benefits of Opana ER’s so-called anti-abuse formulation, which did nothing to deter oral abuse and led to deadly outbreaks of hepatitis and HIV due to its widespread abuse by injection.

“Virginia has seen the brutal impact of the opioid epidemic in every corner of the Commonwealth. This national agreement will allow for extensive investment and remediation efforts for devastated communities. Although no prizes can be awarded to the thousands of lives lost, this settlement represents a major step in ensuring victims receive the treatment and care they need,” Attorney General Miyares said.

The resolution, which is dependent on final documentation and bankruptcy court approval, involves the following:

  • Requires payment of $450 million in cash over 10 years to participating states and subdivisions.
  • Demands that Endo turn over its opioid-related documents for publication online in a public records archive and pay $2.75 million for archiving expenses.
  • Forever banned the marketing of Endo’s opioids.

Negotiations are led by Virginia and the following states: Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Vermont. The settlement is also joined by the attorneys general of Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah , Washington, Wisconsin, Wyoming and the US Virgin Islands.

Hannah Montana’s casting director reveals who Miley Cyrus beat out for the role

August 20, 2022

Montana Economy

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The Hannah Montana The series made Miley Cyrus a household name, but the role could have been a turning point for two other actresses.

Rumors have swirled that singer Belinda, known for her performance in Cheetah Girls 2, nearly landed the role of the beloved character. However, the Disney Channel show’s original casting director Lisa London has now put them to rest, revealing who almost helmed the teen hit, which ran from 2006 to 2011.

In a video shared on TikTok, London clarified that the Spanish-Mexican singer was, in fact, not in the running. In place, Gossip Girl star Taylor Momsen and Daniella Monet, who appeared on Nickelodeon Zoe 101 and Victorious, came close to snagging the plum gig.

HANNAH MONTANA, Miley Cyrus, (Season 1), 2006-, © Disney Channel / Courtesy: Everett Collection

Everett-Collection Miley Cyrus as Hannah Montana

“I discovered Miley Cyrus,” London said. “I wanted everyone to know that Belinda, who is adorable by the way, was never in the top 3 for the role of Hannah.”

Pulling a visual aid as evidence, London shared a piece of paper containing a list of the three actresses vying for the role in 2005. The trio made it to the final round of those competing to play the high school student and undercover pop star, beating over a thousand girls who auditioned.


HANNAH MONTANA – ‘You’re So Vain, You Probably Think This Zit Is All About You’ – Hannah Montana will appear in her first major poster campaign, but when Miley takes a look, she discovers that a zit is on her has been added Face. Miley tries to hide her horror because Lilly has been feeling very embarrassed since losing her contacts and being stuck wearing glasses – and vows not to enter any future skateboarding competition. Rico tricks Jackson into serving as a magician’s assistant in order to get a raise, in “Hannah Montana,” which airs FRIDAY, AUGUST 12 (8:00-8:30 p.m. ET) on the Disney Channel. (DISNEY CHANNEL/BYRON COHEN) MILEY CYRUS; UNIVERSAL CITY, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 15: Actress Daniella Monet visits Hallmark Channel’s ‘Home & Family’ at Universal Studios Hollywood on January 15, 2020 in Universal City, California. (Photo by Paul Archuleta/Getty Images); LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – MARCH 22, 2022 Taylor Momsen poses in the iHeartRadio Music Awards – Press Room at the Shrine Auditorium and Expo Hall on March 22, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/FilmMagic)

DISNEY CHANNEL/BYRON COHEN; Paul Archuleta/Getty; Steve Granitz/FilmMagic Miley Cyrus; Daniella Monet; Taylor Momsen

London also noted that the character was originally named Chloe rather than Miley Stewart before Cyrus was cast.

The series became a global phenomenon, spawning the 2009 film Hannah Montana: The Movie. In March, Cyrus celebrated the show’s 15th anniversary with a heartfelt letter to fans.

“It’s been a while — 15 years to be exact — since the first time I slicked those blonde bangs down my forehead in the best attempt to conceal my identity,” she wrote. “Then I put on a vomit pink terrycloth bathrobe and bedazzled HM on the [heart].”

Hannah Montana is currently streaming on Disney+.

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Judge permanently blocks Biden’s oil and gas lease break in 13 states

August 20, 2022

Montana Loans

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A federal judge on Thursday issued a permanent injunction against the Biden administration’s suspension of new oil and gas leases on federal lands.

The injunction applies to the 13 states that sued the Biden administration for the moratorium in March 2021, including Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana , Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah and West Virginia.

Terry Doughty, the U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Louisiana, ruled the White House went too far with the ban.

President Joe Biden signed Executive Order 14008 on January 27, 2021, prohibiting all new oil and natural gas leases on federal lands and offshore waters. The order did not cancel existing leases on federal lands and offshore waters. Leases on private land were also not affected.

Thirteen Louisiana-led states have sued the Biden administration, saying the lease ban violates the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA), which governs offshore oil and gas leases, and the Mining Leasing Act. (MLA), which governs land leases on land on federal lands.

Doughty issued a temporary injunction in June 2022 in this case. The injunction was overturned Wednesday by the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Doughty’s permanent injunction came a day after the circuit court’s decision (pdf).

Tugboats tow the Noble Danny Adkins semi-submersible drilling rig through the Port Aransas Channel in the Gulf of Mexico in Port Aransas, Texas on Dec. 12, 2020. (Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

In the permanent injunction, Doughty ruled that the executive branch had no power to change the two laws.

“Both statutes require defendant government agencies to sell oil and gas leases. OCSLA has a five-year plan in place that requires qualifying leases to be sold. Defendants’ government agencies do not have the authority to make significant revisions to the OCSLA’s five-year plan without going through congressional-mandated process. The MLA requires the DOI to conduct lease sales, where eligible land is available at least quarterly,” he wrote in the decision (pdf). “By stopping the process, the agencies are effectively changing two laws of Congress. Neither the OCSLA nor the MLA gives the government defendants’ agencies the authority to implement a halt to lease sales.

The Epoch Times has reached out to the Interior Department and the White House for comment.

Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen applauded the permanent injunction.

“President Biden’s executive order to stifle energy development not only raised prices and hurt American families, it was downright illegal. This decision is a victory for the rule of law and for workers and rural communities who depend on the energy industry,” he said in a statement. statement.

An ongoing moratorium on leases would have cut employment by 210 jobs, cut personal income by $13 million and cost Montana $4 million in oil and gas taxes in 2021, he said. said citing a December 2020 study conducted by the University of Wyoming.

Biggest offshore oil and gas lease sale revived

Days before the permanent injunction, a lease known as Lease Sale 257, which is also being challenged in the multi-state lawsuit, was revived by Biden through the so-called Tax Reduction Act. inflation.

The Inflation Reduction Act includes provisions that guide spending, tax credits and loans to boost technologies such as solar panels and equipment to reduce pollution at coal and gas-fired power plants .

But the legislation also contains a provision that reinstates the previously halted Lease 257 sale, which was auctioned off for $192 million in March 2019, the largest offshore oil and gas lease in U.S. history, spanning nearly 81 million acres in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) indicated its intention to cancel the lease sale in February 2021, citing Executive Order 14008. The lease sale was later revived by the government. However, he was later challenged by environmental activist groups and arrested by Judge Rudolph Contreras of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

Contreras ruled in January that the decision to proceed with the sale of the lease was “arbitrary and capricious”.

The decision effectively blocked the 257 lease sale because the Biden administration did not appeal.

Tom Ozimek contributed to the report.

Of The old times


August 20, 2022

Montana Mortgages


An earlier meeting of the Livingston County Board of Supervisors. (Photo/Conrad Baker)

1:30 p.m.
Mt. Morris Supervisor David DiSalvo
Minutes of the ordinary meeting of 8/10/22
1. Receipt of Acknowledgment Letter from New York State Department of Tax and Finance
concerning Resolution No. 2022-267.
-Remarks and presentation of the New York State Senate Medal of Freedom to Sean Needham of Dansville
-Remarks/Congratulations to Sean Needham
Ways and Means Committee
. Establish a standard work day
. Schedule a Public Hearing on Local Bill No. 2-2022 Extending the Additional Mortgage
Registration tax in Livingston County
County Administrator/Budget Officer
. 2022 Livingston County Budget Amendment: Department of Health and Highways (2)
. Authorization to transfer funds: Office for the elderly
. Establish a standard work day and retirement statement credit
county attorney
. Authorizing the Chairman of the Livingston County Board of Supervisors to sign a letter of
Commitment to Legal Services–Magavern Magavern Grimm LLP
. Modification of part of resolution no. 2022-36: Payment of the reduction in health insurance
. Modification of part of resolution no. 2022-36: Summer employment program for young people
. Modification of part of resolution no. 2022-36: accumulation of vacation
GLOW Workforce Development Council
Name Address Title/Represent Term
Mary Grace (Holli) Nenni 14016 Route 31 West, Albion, NY 14411 Youth At Pleasure

Blackbraid takes Black Metal out of Norway and gives it a Native American twist and more Latest News Here

August 19, 2022

Montana Loans

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When most people think of black metal, they think of pasty white
Scandinavians screaming about things like pagan rites, death,
renaissance, and nature in the middle of the woods. It’s about fighting cultural oppression (when it’s not rooted in outright bigotry).

You know who else was oppressed and forced to forget their origins
while their ancestral lands were taken over by intruders on the
duration of several hundred years? Native Americans. That’s why the black solo
the metal band Blackbraid and their particular brand of black metal stand out.
Everything is so real.

Hailing from the ‘Wilderness of the Adirondacks’, Blackbraid is an independent artist who is set to release his debut album, Blackbraid I. Today he released his third single ‘Sacandaga’ and accompanying music video .

Honestly, it hits all the marks of your mainstream black metal single and video. Here is the list :

  • Standing/singing in the woods, you look menacing? Check.
  • White wolf running through the snowy forest? Check.
  • Stunning images of the natural beauty of his homeland? Check.

Outside of the American Northeast, this single and video could easily fit near the freezing fjords of Norway and are just as majestic.

Definitely worth checking out. It’s incredibly interesting to see such important genres of metal finding new life in different cultures and populations. Remember, children. Metal is for everyone. Not just pasty white dudes.

You can see the music video for “Sacandaga,” along with the other two singles “The River of Time Flows Through Me” and “Barefoot Ghost Dance on Blood Soaked Soil” below.

black braid, Black Braid I:

  1. The river of time flows through me
  2. As the creek gently flows
  3. Sacandaga
  4. Barefoot ghost dance on blood soaked ground
  5. Warm wind whispering softly through the hemlock at dusk
  6. Open the jaws of eternity

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Blackbraid Takes Black Metal Out Of Norway And Gives It A Native American Flair And More

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US Treasury offers another $10 billion in pandemic relief to small businesses in 4 states

August 19, 2022

Montana Lending

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The latest round of US Treasury relief is on its way to small businesses as recession worries continue to mount across the country.

The U.S. Treasury on Friday announced plans to roll out its third round of reauthorized State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) funds to Colorado, Montana, New York and Oregon. In total, the four additional states have been approved to receive up to $751 million in aid.

The SSBCI is a small business relief program that has been around since 2010, but was revived in March 2021 thanks to the $1.9 trillion U.S. Bailout Act that President Joe Biden signed into law.

The $10 billion financing program aims to expand access to capital for underserved communities. SSBCI funds are not distributed directly to companies, but rather to lenders. Qualifying small businesses and startups – generally defined as businesses with 500 or fewer employees – can seek loans or investments as they normally would through their bank, community lender or equity investor. shares.

The news follows an earlier release of funds in May in five states: Hawaii, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan and West Virginia. The five states have been approved for relief of up to approximately $639 million.

In July, the Treasury approved $1.5 billion in additional funding after greenlighting nine state plans from Arizona, Connecticut, Indiana, Maine, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota and Vermont. The agency has announced more than $2.25 billion in funding approvals so far, nearly a quarter of the $10 billion program.

The Treasury estimates the program could generate $10 in private investment for every $1 in federal funding, bringing the state total to $100 billion in total lending authority.

There is a menu of resources available to businesses through the SSBCI, which include venture capital, access to capital, collateral support, loan participation, and loan guarantee programs. State governments previously submitted their individual plans to the Treasury outlining how they would allocate funds to small businesses.

Montana, for its part, says it will operate a loan participation program with its funding and plans to expand opportunities for rural and Native American entrepreneurs in the state. Colorado plans to oversee three different programs focused on small businesses and specifically set aside $10 million of its SSBCI allocation to help businesses recover from the pandemic. Colorado Governor Jared Polis welcomed the announcement in a Friday press release, saying the funding will help support more than 11,000 jobs in the Centennial State.

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen echoed the praise: “This is a historic investment in entrepreneurship, small business growth and innovation through the US bailout that will help reduce barriers to access to capital for traditionally underserved communities, including those in rural areas,” Yellen said in a statement Friday.

The roadmap for future releases and the amount of relief is unclear. Details are expected to be released as funding is approved.

Overview of the law: the delusions of a roommate are worrying

August 19, 2022

Montana Economy

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A resident concerned about her roommate’s behavior contacted the Columbia Falls Police Department after she began hallucinating.

The woman told officers the man had a history of substance abuse and had undergone treatment for alcohol and dust cleaner use. He was in the garage now, because he thought people were watching him. Earlier he was talking about the fact that there were people trying to set up an economy in their backyard. She thought he might use inhalants again. She told officers she had since left the house.

Someone knocked over several fences on Scenic Drive. The resident who reported it said it happened overnight. From their vantage point, they could see that the vandals also hit the neighbor’s fence.

Officers were made aware of possible abuse in or around Columbia Falls, but the caller provided only vague information.

Someone contacted the police after a man got into a fight with their daughter, even though she apparently punched him and left him with a bloody face.

A resident asked officers to come outside to look at his fence after seeing an unusual scene unfold right before his eyes. The man said a vehicle stopped on his property and a child jumped out and ran through it. Despite the incursion, the man said the fence appeared to be intact. He attributed it to TikTok’s Kool-Aid Man challenge.

Officers responded to a report of a group of children hanging out in a parking lot around 11 p.m. The miners were quickly sent home.

Police cornered a pair of campers on Rapids Avenue.

Officers running an additional patrol near the high school discovered an open door in the building. The door was secure and everything seemed OK.

A swerving Buick sedan prompted another motorist to contact authorities. They said the four-door nearly hit their vehicle head-on, then nearly hit a curb.

Dispatchers said they received a phone call from the payphone located in the police department lobby. They disconnected the call after it became clear the caller did not require first responder assistance.

A man allegedly jumped in front of vehicles.

Officers headed to a local watering hole for a report of a woman harassing a man at the bar. According to the caller, she slandered him and was generally disruptive. She left before the officers arrived.

Someone ran into a homeowner’s fence on Riparian Drive the night before around midnight.

‘He should have retired about five years ago’: Paige Spiranac makes bold comments on legendary golf broadcaster’s retirement

August 18, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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Sir Nick Faldo recently retired from golf analyst. Since he was CBS’ senior golf analyst for PGA Tour coverage for the past 16 years, many golf fans were disappointed when he retired. However, that was not the case for former professional golfer Paige Spiranac.

“I was a big fan of Faldo, but I feel like he should have retired about five years ago.” said the 29-year-old. “Because he just…I don’t know if he just lost interest in it,” she explained again. “Maybe just getting a little senile.” Spiranac expressed his thoughts on Sir Faldo’s retirement through the latest episode of his podcast, “Playing a Round with Paige Renee”.


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The professional golfer turned golf analyst had chosen the 2022 Rocket Mortgage Classic as his retirement location. He then received a moving farewell from his colleagues and members of the CBS crew. Notably, most golf fans have had tears in their eyes watching their favorite golf analyst cry on TV.

However, Spiranac did not have the same emotions as the others. In a Twitter video she then posted, she expressed how she didn’t think Sir Faldo had been at his best over the past two years.

Paige Spiranac explained her reason for not being sad about Sir Faldo’s retirement

“He just started making these really weird comments,” Spiranac said in his podcast. “I don’t know what he was trying to do” she added. “It was trying to appeal to millennials or Gen Z, but it felt like it just didn’t hit well.”

The 1-time Catus Tour champion also added that she loves the former NBC golf analyst. Feherty is notably one of the few golf analysts to join the new LIV Golf Invitational series. He began commentating on Series LIV since his event, which was held at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster.

Is Sir Nick Faldo joining the LIV Golf Invitational Series?

Since many players in the golfing world began leaving their old roles to join the show, many fans thought Sir Nick Faldo was stepping down from CBS to do the same. However, the English professional golfer had other ideas.


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According to Sir Nick Faldo, he and his wife, Lindsay De Marco, bought a ranch in Montana. And they decided to settle there to renovate it, which they named “Faldo Farm”.


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What was your reaction when Sir Nick Faldo retired after 16 years? Did you also think he should have retired years ago like Paige Spiranac?

Watch this story: Rigorous public scrutiny once made Paige Spiranac succumb to the pressure and nearly give up her career

‘Horse Whisperer’ author Nicholas Evans dies at 72

August 16, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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Nicholas Evans, a British novelist whose debut album, ‘The Horse Whisperer’, became a publishing phenomenon, selling more than 15 million copies and leading to a hit film adaptation by Robert Redford, died on August 9 at his home in Totnes, in the English county of Devon. He was 72 years old.

His death, following a heart attack, was announced in a press release by his friend and literary agent, Caradoc King.

A mild-mannered former journalist and TV producer, Mr Evans was working as a screenwriter and trying to break into film when he heard a story that “shivered me”, as he later said. Visiting a friend in the South West of England in 1993, he met a blacksmith who told him about a “horse whisperer”, an almost mystical figure who could heal a traumatized pony with a few sweet words .

The story captivated Mr Evans, who had grown up playing cowboys and Indians in the English countryside and reading novels by Jack London. Now he was £60,000 in debt, looking for new direction – and possibly a second mortgage – after unsuccessfully trying to direct his own film. Here, he decided, lay the seeds of a story he could tell in his own voice.

“If my film career had been more successful, I might have tried writing the story in screenplay form,” he recalled in a Q&A on his website. “Fortunately, I was on my feet, deeply disillusioned with the cinema, and saw no point in writing another screenplay to gather dust on my desk.”

So Mr. Evans began writing a novel, traveling to Montana, New Mexico and California to interview expert riders and research the American West. He returned home with the outline of a story about a young girl, Grace Maclean, and her spirited horse, Pearl, who are hit by a truck and recover with the help of a Montana rancher who falls in love. of Grace’s mother. Mr Evans wrote half the book, around 200 pages, and shared the manuscript with his friend King, deciding that if the agent didn’t like it, “I was just going to throw it away”.

The manuscript remained. Marketed as a cross between Cormac McCarthy’s Western novel “All the Pretty Horses” and Robert James Waller’s bestselling romance “The Bridges of Madison County”, it generated a bidding war after King sent it to the publishers just before the Frankfurt Book Fair in 1994. The North American publishing rights were auctioned off for over $3 million, and Mr. Evans won another $3 million for the film rights, after what he described as a surreal evening during which he was tasked with sizing up Hollywood producers, including Redford and Scott. Roudin.

“My kids and my wife were downstairs,” Mr. Evans later told Variety, “and upstairs some of the biggest names in the business asked my permission to take $3 million from them. was just absurd.”

By the time “The Horse Whisperer” was published in 1995, critics seemed eager to cut Mr. Evans’ multimillion-dollar novel down to size. A New York Times reviewer, Randall Short, described it as “sentimentally bloated and utterly devoid of genuine feeling”; another, book reviewer Michiko Kakutani, called it “a sappy romance novel, stuffed with sentimental patter about the emotional lives of animals and lots of Walleresque hooey about men and women”.

Readers felt differently. The novel topped the Times bestseller list and Mr. Evans’ US publisher, Delacorte, claimed it was the best-selling debut novel in history, with more than 1, 5 million copies sold in its first year alone. The book has been translated into 40 languages ​​and adapted into a 1998 film starring Redford, who produced and directed. The film also starred Kristin Scott Thomas and Scarlett Johansson, in one of her first major film roles, and grossed over $186 million worldwide.

Mr Evans, who said he turned down an offer to write the screenplay, admired the acting but felt the film had ‘completely missed the point of the book’, hitting what he saw as a note of hope at the end, even though the penultimate scene featured a deadly stampede of wild horses.

“I think there seems to be a kind of quest going on right now, with people wanting to know if there’s more to life than material things,” he told The Times on the release. of the novel. “This book is about hope, healing and the redemptive power of love, and how humans have an extraordinary ability to go through the worst kinds of pain and survive. It is an affirming message from life at a time when there is a lot of darkness around.

Mr. Evans had direct experience of this darkness. As his novel was sold at auction, he was unsure of ever finishing it, having recently been diagnosed with skin cancer. He kept his illness a secret even as reporters hailed him as “Britain’s luckiest man”.

“The day after the operation, I was going around publishing houses trying to look suave and normal, and I was in cold sweats,” he revealed in a 2011 interview with the Guardian. “I was just dying, I was in so much pain.”

Then came the day of publication and the rapid rise of his book on the bestseller lists. There were more hardships ahead – a fractured marriage, near-fatal mushroom poisoning – but “for three or four years,” he said, “my feet didn’t touch the ground.”

Nicholas Benbow Evans was born in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire on July 26, 1950. His father was a sales manager for an engineering company and his mother was a housewife. At age 8, he was sent to boarding school and the nearby Bromsgrove Day School. He then studied law at St Edmund Hall, part of Oxford University.

After graduating in 1969 with first class honours, he was a reporter for the Evening Chronicle in Newcastle upon Tyne and later was a journalist and television producer, doing segments on American politics and the Lebanese Civil War for a weekly news program.

By 1982 he had begun making television documentaries about cultural figures, including actor Laurence Olivier and painters Francis Bacon and David Hockney. He was producing a special about filmmaker David Lean, the director of “Lawrence of Arabia,” when Lean encouraged him to strike out on his own.

“He kept saying to me, ‘Why are you making a movie about me? You should make a movie about yourself, not about someone else who makes movies,'” Mr Evans recalled in an interview with the Chicago Tribune.

He later wrote and produced the 1992 comedy “Just Like a Woman” – about a transvestite financial executive (played by Adrian Pasdar) who strikes up an affair with his landlord (Julie Walters) – before writing novels. His second book, “The Loop” (1998), involved a pack of wolves tormenting cattle ranchers and sold 5 million copies. Her later novels include ‘The Smoke Jumper’ (2001), about a love triangle involving two friends who fight wildfires, and ‘The Divide’ (2005), centered on a wealthy young woman who becomes an eco-terrorist.

Mr Evans’ first marriage, to Oxford schoolmate Jenny Lyon in 1973, ended in divorce shortly after his first novel shot him to stardom. He then married Charlotte Gordon Cumming, a Scottish singer-songwriter. In addition to his wife, survivors include two children from his first marriage, Max and Lauren; a son, Harry, from a relationship with television producer Jane Hewland; and another son, Finlay, from his second marriage.

On a trip to his brother-in-law’s Scottish Highland estate in 2008, Mr Evans and his wife accidentally ate poisonous mushrooms and were rushed to hospital convulsing. They suffered from kidney failure and needed transplants, which Mr Evans received three years later after his daughter persuaded him to take one of her own.

Mr Evans had almost finished his novel ‘The Brave’ (2009) when the poisoning happened, and said the novel’s themes of family secrets and guilt particularly resonated with his own foraging experience in the woods. He and another family member had picked the mushrooms “assuming the other knew what they were doing”, he told the Guardian.

“Guilt is my subject,” Mr. Evans liked to say. But this time, he joked, “I took the research to a rather extreme degree.”

New West: We, and much of the West, are locked in a mega-drought

August 15, 2022

Montana Economy

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By Todd Wilkinson EBS Columnist

We live in a time where some people would rather ignore the dots than start connecting them, or ponder the meaning of cause and effect, or believe that denying science is a less anxiety-inducing undertaking than seriously considering what which is before us.

Sometimes it’s hard to gauge what’s going on when you’re in the middle. Consider the indicators:

Regular and increasing summer tawny owl fishing and floating restrictions on our rivers; algae bloom on the lakes and even in the Gallatin. Although our immediate area has so far avoided large fires this summer thanks to a cool and wet late spring, we are by no means out of the woods.

Two years ago, a Labor Day weekend wildfire near the M Trail in Bozeman overtook the Bridgers and destroyed 68 structures, 30 of which were homes in Bridger Canyon. And this November, the Porcupine Fire burned down nearly 700 acres near Big Sky. Last summer the Shedhorn Fire up Taylor Fork south of Big Sky burned 75 acres and firefighters contained a burned tree on the South Fork loop. Currently, a dozen wildfires are burning in Montana.

Whitebark pines, whose cone seeds are an important source of nutrition for grizzly bears, continue to die off and are now being considered for listing under the Endangered Species Act. The melting of the mountain snowpack usually occurs earlier. Wetlands dry up and disappear. Average temperatures are rising.

Last summer, a peer-reviewed analysis published in the journal “Science” suggests that much of the West, including southwestern Montana and much of Wyoming, is not suffering the consequences of a drought, but mega-drought. The study is titled “Great Contribution of Anthropogenic Warming to an Emerging Megadrought in North America.”

While the impact is most pronounced in the desert and far western states, the tentacles reach right into our backyards in the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem.

“Severe and persistent 21stThe drought of the last century in southwestern North America motivates comparisons with medieval mega-droughts and questions about the role of anthropogenic factors. [human-caused] climate change,” write the nine authors. “We are using hydrological modeling and new reconstructions of 1,200-year-old tree rings, thus summer soil moisture, to demonstrate that the 2000-2018 drought was the second driest 19-year period since 800, surpassed only by a mega-drought of the late 1500s.”

Based on 31 different climate models, researchers believe that humans releasing more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere are changing weather patterns and ocean water temperatures, resulting in less humidity, lower humidity and warmer temperatures.

According to them, human-caused climate change has helped turn what would normally be a drought event into a prolonged mega-drought.

One of the tools used to compare hot, dry periods of the past with the present are tree rings that allow scientists to go back in time. Outside of deserts, and particularly in forested areas, the researchers note that drought conditions are aggravated by drying of soils in summer, driven by human-induced warming via increased water evaporation and early loss of snow cover.

One way to think about it is this: a ski area can have a lot of powder in February, but if warmer temperatures cause it to melt earlier and the summer humidity doesn’t materialize or the rains are offset by scorching temperatures, the soils are drying out.

When soils dry up, grasses and forests dry up and become very vulnerable to fire, whether caused by lightning or man-made. No forest thinning will stop the drying out of the soil; in fact, logging, other studies note, can make matters worse.

In Greater Yellowstone, including the foothills of the mountains around Bozeman, Big Sky, Paradise Valley, and in the Tetons, thousands of homes have been built on the edge or inside the forests. Policy experts say they are the equivalent of people building homes in the floodplains of rivers or along ocean coasts where hurricanes roar ashore.

In many areas, insurance companies are either requiring homeowners to pay extremely high premiums or have announced that they will no longer pay damage claims to homeowners who choose to build in at-risk areas.

On top of that, firefighting costs are often borne by all US taxpayers. In recent years, these costs have consumed half of the US Forest Service’s budget, with a huge percentage related to defending structures on private land.

At the same time, the agency has faced unprecedented reductions in staff responsible for scientific research and wildlife stewardship, backcountry management, trail maintenance, law enforcement, monitoring livestock grazing allocations and restoration work.

While climate change means huge challenges related to fires and loss of property (including health issues from smoke), water availability, rangeland for wildlife and livestock , to agricultural production and the economy of outdoor recreation, in the desert southwest, it can be even more serious.

Tens of millions of Americans depend on melting snow and precipitation that comes from the Rocky Mountains and then, via river systems like Colorado, is tapped into states like Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada and California downstream.

Lake Powell, a federal water supply project in southern Utah that was touted as an insurance policy against droughts and a source of economic prosperity through land development, crop irrigation and recreation, suffers from a “20-year drought” – the last 10 whose years have been described as extreme. This summer, water levels could reach 3,540 feet above sea level at Lake Powell, the lowest since 1968.

Experts say that today water has been over-allocated, meaning more has been allocated to different user groups than is generated in the system, especially during droughts. Although the transfer of agricultural water rights has bought the states of the Upper and Lower Colorado River Pacts time, many believe it is borrowed time.

Last summer, Montana State University’s Dr. Cathy Whitlock, Scott Bischke and others released the first-ever assessment that examines the ecological impacts of climate change on Greater Yellowstone. Look up. Analysis is another opportunity to connect the dots of scientific reality.

Todd Wilkinson is the founder of the Bozeman-based Mountain Journal ( and a correspondent for National Geographic and The Guardian. He is the author of numerous books, including his latest, “Ripple Effects: How to Save Yellowstone and America’s Most Iconic Wildlife Ecosystem”, available at

This column has been updated from the original version published in EBS in April 2021.

M&T Bank Corp sells 3,707 shares of Annaly Capital Management, Inc. (NYSE: NLY)

August 15, 2022

Montana Lending

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M&T Bank Corp reduced its position in shares of Annaly Capital Management, Inc. (NYSE: NLYGet a rating) by 5.4% during the first quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor held 65,541 shares of the real estate investment trust after selling 3,707 shares during the quarter. M&T Bank Corp’s holdings in Annaly Capital Management were worth $461,000 at the end of the most recent period.

Several other institutional investors and hedge funds have also recently changed their positions in NLY. Riverview Trust Co acquired a new position in Annaly Capital Management in the first quarter worth approximately $25,000. Hardy Reed LLC purchased a new stock position from Annaly Capital Management during Q1 worth approximately $27,000. Byrne Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Annaly Capital Management in Q4 worth approximately $31,000. CWM LLC acquired a new stake in Annaly Capital Management during the 4th quarter for a value of approximately $31,000. Finally, SJS Investment Consulting Inc. acquired a new stake in Annaly Capital Management during Q1 worth approximately $30,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds hold 41.79% of the company’s shares.

Annaly Capital Management Stock performance

NLY opened at $6.82 on Monday. The company’s 50-day simple moving average is $6.31 and its 200-day simple moving average is $6.71. Annaly Capital Management, Inc. has a 52-week low of $5.45 and a 52-week high of $8.94. The company has a market capitalization of $11.08 billion, a PE ratio of 2.71, a PEG ratio of 1.25 and a beta of 1.16.

Annaly Capital Management (NYSE: NLYGet a rating) last reported quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 27. The REIT reported earnings per share (EPS) of $0.30 for the quarter, beating analyst consensus estimates of $0.25 by $0.05. The company posted revenue of $475.14 million for the quarter, versus $399.39 million expected by analysts. Annaly Capital Management achieved a return on equity of 16.72% and a net margin of 178.91%. The company’s revenues were down 18.2% from the same quarter last year. In the same quarter a year earlier, the company posted EPS of $0.30. On average, research analysts expect Annaly Capital Management, Inc. to post 1.08 earnings per share for the current year.

Annaly Capital Management announces a dividend

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, July 29. Shareholders of record on Thursday, June 30 received a dividend of $0.22. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, June 29. This represents a dividend of $0.88 on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 12.90%. The payout ratio of Annaly Capital Management is 34.92%.

Insider activity at Annaly Capital Management

In other news from Annaly Capital Management, CEO David L. Finkelstein bought 200,000 shares in a trade on Friday, June 17. The shares were purchased at an average price of $5.56 per share, with a total value of $1,112,000.00. Following completion of the transaction, the CEO now directly owns 1,669,013 shares of the company, valued at $9,279,712.28. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, accessible via this link. 0.31% of the shares are currently held by insiders of the company.

Analyst upgrades and downgrades

NLY has been the subject of several research analyst reports. Piper Sandler cut her price target on Annaly Capital Management shares from $6.50 to $6.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a Tuesday, June 28 report. Credit Suisse Group lowered its price target on Annaly Capital Management to $6.50 in a Friday, July 22 report. JPMorgan Chase & Co. cut its price target on Annaly Capital Management from $7.50 to $6.50 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a Monday, April 25 report. Barclays lowered its target price on Annaly Capital Management from $8.00 to $7.00 in a Wednesday April 27 research report. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods upgraded Annaly Capital Management from a “market performer” rating to an “outperformer” rating and raised their price target for the stock from $6.25 to $6.75. in a Wednesday, June 8 research report. Five research analysts gave the stock a hold rating and two gave the company a buy rating. According to data from MarketBeat, the company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $6.67.

Annaly Capital Management Company Profile

(Get a rating)

Annaly Capital Management, Inc, a diversified capital manager, engages in mortgage financing and middle market business lending. The Company invests in agency mortgage-backed securities, mortgage servicing rights, agency commercial mortgage-backed securities, non-agency residential mortgage assets, residential mortgages, transfer securities credit risk, corporate debt and other commercial real estate investments.

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Want to see what other hedge funds hold NLY? Visit to get the latest 13F filings and insider trades for Annaly Capital Management, Inc. (NYSE: NLYGet a rating).

Institutional ownership by quarter for Annaly Capital Management (NYSE:NLY)

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Here’s One Reason America’s Racial Wealth Gap Persists Across Generations

August 13, 2022

Montana Loans

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Angela Chevaux and her husband make a good living in York, Pennsylvania. She’s an insurance claims supervisor and he’s in construction. Yet a recent inheritance from her stepfather changed her life. He left them a retirement account, a life insurance policy, an annuity – and her husband and brother inherited an old farmhouse in a secluded spot with a pond.

“We were able to buy the property – the other half – from his brother for a decent price,” says Chevaux.

She thinks they paid about half of what the appraised value would have been.

/ Via Angèle Horses


Via Angele Horses

A recent inheritance enabled the Chevaux family of York, Pennsylvania to pay off a mortgage and a student loan. This type of generational wealth transfer is much more common for white families than for others.

They renovate the farm to live in and sell their own house, saying goodbye to 11 years of extra payments.

“We will no longer have a mortgage [ages] 50 and 59!” she laughs.

His stepfather also left Chevaux’s 24-year-old son a money market account.

“He had given our son college money before he passed,” she says. “So that allowed him to pay off the rest of his college debt.”

Her son is a financial adviser and has invested the rest of his inheritance, intending to use it to buy a house.

The family’s financial fortunes show one way America racial wealth gap has persisted – and even expanded – over the generations. White adults are more than twice as likely as Black and Latino households to get significant financial support from parents or other elders. That’s according to a new poll by NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health.


Dorothy Brown, Professor of Tax Law at Georgetown University, wants more white families to talk about these intergenerational benefits.

“Because you have black Americans doing everything they’ve been told is right and not moving forward,” she says. “And they’re scratching their heads like, ‘How come I’m not doing better than me? How come I don’t do better than the guy in the cabin next to me? ”

The new poll finds that 38% of white adults say they have received at least $10,000 in gifts or loans from a parent or older relative. Only 14% of black adults receive gifts or similar loans. The share is 16% for Latinos and 19% for Native Americans.

Brown says this divide reflects generations of segregation and racism, especially in housing policies. Racially restrictive covenants prohibited whites from selling or renting their homes to African Americans or other minority groups. And Federal Housing Administration policies supported such restrictions.

“So if your grandparent has a house that was insured by the FHAit was because they were white,” she said. “You don’t think about it, but it was.”

The racial wealth gap is also evident in many other survey questions.

“When people talk about the American dream, it’s here,” says Robert Blendon, a Harvard professor emeritus of health policy who worked on the poll.

A lot of black, Latino and Native American adults say they want to move to better housing and expect their kids to go to college, but they don’t have the money to pay for those things.

“These minority communities are going to … have to borrow everything in a very risky environment for that,” Blendon says, “and they have nothing to at least help defray some of the cost.”

What’s at stake, he says, is the ability to make the choices that can help families and future generations move forward.

For black Americans, wealth is more likely to increase

For African Americans, in particular, tax expert Brown says the generational transfer of wealth is actually more likely to go the other way – with children helping parents who suffered under Jim Crow.

Theodore Bailey and his wife, Audrey, live in Marana, Arizona.  He is one of many college-educated Black Americans who provide significant financial support for their families, which research finds contributes to the persistent racial wealth gap as it decreases funding for inheritances.

/ Via Theodore Bailey


Via Theodore Bailey

Theodore Bailey and his wife, Audrey, live in Marana, Arizona. He is one of many college-educated Black Americans who provide significant financial support for their families, which research finds contributes to the persistent racial wealth gap as it decreases funding for inheritances.

This is the story of Theodore Bailey, who is 76 and remembers a difficult childhood in segregated Nashville.

“My father died when I was 3 years old,” he says. “My mother was a single mother with four sons.”

Her father died while serving as an army cook during World War II, leading to a major rift for Bailey. As a war orphan, he was able to attend college thanks to the GI Bill, which launched a successful career as an engineer and missile designer. Early on, Bailey sent money to help her mother get by.

“I knew she was struggling, you know. And at the time, I didn’t have much to lose, but I was sending her everything I could,” he says.

Now retired to Arizona, Bailey says he has always helped his family. This includes supporting a brother who lost his job, sending his grandchildren to college, and being there for others along the way.

“Oh,” he laughs, “there are always cousins ​​and nephews and things that want to borrow money, and often they don’t pay it back.”

Research shows caregivers like this are serious depletes the wealth of black American college graduates. Bailey says he now has to cash out more of his IRA than he would like in this bad market, to meet his own expenses.

He does not know how much he will have left to pass on to his children and grandchildren.

“I invested in them, putting them through college and so on,” he says. “I hope they can take care of themselves.”

Copyright 2022 NPR. To learn more, visit

Kirk W. Walters sells 21,116 shares of M&T Bank Co. (NYSE: MTB)

August 13, 2022

Montana Lending

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M&T Bank Co. (NYSE: MTBGet a rating) Director Kirk W. Walters sold 21,116 shares of the company in a trade on Tuesday, August 9. The shares were sold at an average price of $180.00, for a total transaction of $3,800,880.00. Following the completion of the sale, the administrator now directly owns 6,134 shares of the company, valued at $1,104,120. The transaction was disclosed in an SEC filing, which is available via this hyperlink.

M&T Bank shares up 1.6%

Shares of MTB opened at $189.82 on Friday. The stock has a market capitalization of $34.06 billion, a PE ratio of 17.64, a P/E/G ratio of 0.82 and a beta of 0.91. M&T Bank Co. has a 1-year low of $131.42 and a 1-year high of $189.88. The company has a debt ratio of 0.13, a quick ratio of 1.05 and a current ratio of 0.98. The company’s 50-day simple moving average is $167.40 and its 200-day simple moving average is $171.25.

M&T Bank (NYSE: MTBGet a rating) last released its quarterly results on Wednesday, July 20. The financial services provider reported earnings per share (EPS) of $1.08 for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $2.75 per ($1.67). M&T Bank had a return on equity of 10.76% and a net margin of 23.21%. During the same quarter last year, the company posted EPS of $3.45. Analysts expect M&T Bank Co. to post earnings per share of 15.21 for the current fiscal year.

M&T Bank said its board authorized a stock repurchase plan on Tuesday, July 19 that sees the company repurchase $3.00 billion of outstanding stock. This repurchase authorization allows the financial services provider to repurchase up to 9.7% of its shares through purchases on the open market. Stock repurchase plans usually indicate that the company’s board of directors believe its stock is undervalued.

M&T Bank announces dividend

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, June 30. Investors of record on Wednesday, June 1 received a dividend of $1.20. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, May 31. This represents an annualized dividend of $4.80 and a yield of 2.53%. M&T Bank’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 44.61%.

Changes to analyst ratings

Several analysts have recently commented on MTB shares. Piper Sandler raised her price target on M&T Bank shares from $200.00 to $210.00 in a Wednesday, April 20 research note. cut M&T Bank shares from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Friday. JPMorgan Chase & Co. cut its price target on M&T Bank shares from $200.00 to $195.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a Friday, July 1 research note. Robert W. Baird upgraded M&T Bank shares from a ‘neutral’ rating to an ‘outperforming’ rating and raised his price target for the stock from $175.00 to $200.00 in a research report Friday, June 17. Finally, Citigroup raised its price target on M&T Bank shares to $200.00 in a Friday, July 22 research report. One analyst rated the stock with a sell rating, four gave the company a hold rating and eight gave the company a buy rating. Based on MarketBeat data, M&T Bank currently has a consensus rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average target price of $198.71.

Hedge funds weigh on M&T Bank

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Riverview Trust Co acquired a new position in M&T Bank in Q1 worth approximately $27,000. WASHINGTON TRUST Co increased its holdings in M&T Bank by 77.4% in the 2nd quarter. WASHINGTON TRUST Co now owns 188 shares of the financial services provider worth $30,000 after acquiring 82 additional shares during the period. Bank of New Hampshire bought a new position in M&T Bank in Q1 for about $34,000. Cordasco Financial Network bought a new position in M&T Bank in Q1 worth around $34,000. Finally, JW Cole Advisors Inc. bought a new position in M&T Bank in Q1 worth around $34,000. 87.61% of the shares are currently held by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About M&T Bank

(Get a rating)

M&T Bank Corporation operates as a bank holding company that provides commercial and retail banking services. The Company’s Business Banking segment provides deposit, lending, cash management and other financial services to small businesses and professionals. Its Commercial Banking segment provides deposit products, commercial loans and leases, letters of credit and cash management services to medium and large commercial enterprises.

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Student borrowers worried as COVID-19 moratorium deadline approaches

August 12, 2022

Montana Loans

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LENEXA, Kan. – In less than three weeks, the federal student loan repayment break will expire. The Biden administration had extended the deadline for the fourth time to August 31 in hopes of helping families while dealing with the hardships of the pandemic.

Kelly Hansen has been paying off her student loans for 34 years. She is pursuing higher education to fulfill her vocation.

“My mom was a single mom and a teacher,” Hansen said. “She wanted me to get a good education, so I went to Montana State University and graduated in 1991.”

Hansen pursued a career in the culinary arts as an adult and recently graduated from seminary to become a hospital chaplain. Although she thinks all of her education was worth the financial investment, her debt has piled up over the years.

“Just myself, without my spouse, I have about $90,000 in student loan debt right now,” she said. “Thirty-four years to pay, intermittently.”

The student loan moratorium during COVID-19 has been a sigh of relief for Hansen. She and her husband wanted to use that time and move forward on the payments, but life had other plans.

“You know, we thought we could build up that 6 month reserve that you’re supposed to have, and we’re still taking care of that, not to mention other debts,” Hansen said.

Student loan counselor Jason Anderson says these types of loans are difficult because you can’t declare bankruptcy or use other mechanisms in society to get rid of debt. A borrower’s best bet is finding the right repayment plan.

“If you’re struggling to repay your federal student loans, there are other plans,” Anderson said. Certain professions may qualify for loan forgiveness, so we’re specifically talking about teachers, doctors in some states, and government officials in particular.

Anderson believes that with the political climate in the country heading into the election, the Biden administration will once again extend the moratorium. It is unclear whether the administration will cancel the debt or how much it will cancel.

Working two jobs and living paycheck to paycheck with her husband in Lenexa, Hansen says the approaching deadline can feel overwhelming.

“But you just have to laugh it off and know it’s going to work out,” Hansen said.

Montana adds 1,824 cases, no new deaths

August 12, 2022

Montana Economy

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As of Friday morning, Montana confirmed 300,607 positive cases of COVID-19. Montana’s COVID-19 case tracking map shows 1,824 new confirmed cases. There are currently 2,099 active cases in the state.

According to the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services, 1,527,257 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered and 571,664 Montana residents are fully immunized.

In Missoula, 210,812 doses have been administered and 77,821 people are fully immunized. 64% of Missoula’s eligible population is fully immunized, which is the most tied in the state. You can find current case numbers from the City of Missoula Department of Health here.

The number of COVID-19-related deaths in the state was 3,481 on August 5, 2022 and remained at 3,481 on August 12, 2022, according to state health officials.

Here are the updated case totals in Montana:

Case of Yellowstone County:
46,503 Total | 318 Newly Reported | 501 Active

Case of Missoula County:
30,853 Total | 172 Newly Reported | 244 Active

Gallatin County case:
38,432 Total | 161 Newly Reported | 257 Active

Case of Cascade County:
27,250 | 158 Newly Reported | 200 assets

Flathead County case:
31,593 Total | 142 Newly Reported | 104 Active

Case of Lewis and Clark County:
20,002 Total | 134 Newly Reported | 64 Active

Big Horn County Case:
5,316 Total | 84 Newly Reported | 73 Active

Hill County Case:
4,970 | 56 Newly Reported | 24 active

Case of Rosebud County:
2,854 Total | 51 Newly Reported | 9 Active

Case of Ravalli County:
7,675 Total | 38 Newly Reported | 58 active

Blaine County case:
2,308 | 36 Newly Reported | 20 assets

Silver Bow County Case:
9,158 Total | 35 newly reported | 54 active

Case of Fergus County:
2,669 Total | 29 Newly Reported | 34 Active

Lake County case:
7,400 Total | 29 Newly Reported | 37 Active

Madison County case:
2,142 Total | 25 Newly Reported | 23 Active

Park County case:
4,804 Total | 25 Newly Reported | 34 Active

Case of Roosevelt County:
3,478 Total | 22 Newly Reported | 30 assets

Lincoln County Case:
5,171 Total | 20 newly reported | 31 Active

Case of Glacier County:
4,328 Total | 19 Newly Reported | 21 Active

Carbon County case:
2,245 | 17 Newly Reported | 13 Active

Case of Dawson County:
2,550 | 17 Newly Reported | 20 assets

Case of Deer Lodge County:
2,850 | 17 Newly Reported | 9 Active

Case of Chouteau County:
1,106 Total | 16 Newly Reported | 8 Active

Jefferson County Case:
2,882 Total | 16 Newly Reported | 14 Active

Pondera County Case:
1,327 | 16 Newly Reported | 17 Active

Powell County case:
2,059 Total | 15 Newly Reported | 15 active

Sanders County Case:
2,289 | 15 Newly Reported | 9 Active

Case of Custer County:
3,219 Total | 14 Newly Reported | 20 assets

Valley County case:
1,916 Total | 14 Newly Reported | 16 Active

Toole County case:
1,330 | 12 Newly Reported | 19 Active

Case of Beaverhead County:
2,315 | 11 Newly Reported | 20 assets

Granite County Case:
606 total | 9 Newly reported | 9 Active

Sheridan County case:
802 Full | 9 Newly reported | 16 Active

Case of Musselshell County:
982 Total | 8 Newly Reported | 12 Active

Richland County case:
2,775 Total | 8 Newly Reported | 3 Active

Broadwater County case:
1,391 Total | 7 Newly Reported | 3 Active

Case of the mineral county:
1,226 Total | 7 Newly Reported | 5 Active

Case of Wheatland County:
415 Total | 7 Newly Reported | 8 Active

Daniels County Case:
425 Overall | 6 Newly Reported | 4 Active

Case of Teton County:
1,409 Total | 6 Newly Reported | 2 active

Liberty County case:
449 Overall | 4 Newly Reported | 5 Active

Meagher County case:
497 Overall | 4 Newly Reported | 4 Active

Stillwater County case:
1,619 Total | 4 Newly Reported | 11 Active

Carter County Case:
270 Total | 3 Newly Reported | 3 Active

Case of Judith Basin County:
250 total | 2 Newly reported | 4 Active

Case of Powder River County:
388 Overall | 2 Newly reported | 2 active

Case of Prairie County:
277 Overall | 2 Newly reported | 3 Active

Case of Sweet Grass County:
841 Overall | 1 Newly reported | 5 Active

Case of the county of Wibaux:
211 totals | 1 Newly reported | 0 Active

Fallon County case:
707 Overall | 0 Newly reported | 1 Active

Garfield County Case:
243 Overall | 0 Newly reported | 0 Active

Case of Golden Valley County:
155 Overall | 0 Newly reported | 0 Active

McCone County Case:
406 Full | 0 Newly reported | 0 Active

Petroleum County Case:
35 Overall | 0 Newly reported | 0 Active

Phillips County case:
1,093 Total | 0 Newly reported | 0 Active

Case of Treasure County:
141 Overall | 0 Newly reported | 1 Active

Answers to 25 common questions about the COVID-19 vaccine

Vaccinations against COVID-19 began being administered in the United States on December 14, 2020. The rapid rollout came just over a year after the virus was first identified in November 2019. The impressive speed with which vaccines were developed also left a lot of people with a lot of questions. The questions range from practical – how will I get vaccinated? – to science – how do these vaccines even work?

Keep reading to find answers to 25 common questions about the COVID-19 vaccine.

See striking photos of the tourism industry during COVID-19

Government tax U-turn: Landlords allowed breaks for long-term rentals

August 12, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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Megan Woods: Owners of long-term rentals will get the tax breaks back. Photo/Mark Mitchell

The government has flip-flopped on the parameters of rental housing policy, backing away from scrapping landlord tax breaks.

Housing Minister Megan Woods today announced that owners of more than 20 rentals in one development, offering tenancies of 10 years or more, will now be able to claim mortgage interest deductibility.

This is to encourage this sector to thrive, she said, citing the fast-growing build-to-let sector.

Last year, the government announced that it would remove the benefits landlords enjoyed: the deduction of interest paid on mortgages for rental properties from their tax bills, which encouraged PAYE workers to buy rentals in order to reduce their tax bills.

The changes were first announced last March.

The end of the breaks sparked outrage from landlords, including Ockham Residential chief executive Mark Todd, who said he feared he would be forced to sell 85 apartments.

The change in tax policy has led to gloomy predictions from various interest groups that they will cause the maximum exodus of investors from the residential real estate market.

But homeowners buying a brand new property could still claim their mortgage interest as a tax deductible expense for up to 20 years.

Owners of existing older properties would not be able to recover tax on the interest portion of mortgages for rental units.

Today, Woods framed the U-turn in positive terms.

“We are granting an exemption from the interest limitation rules to certain types of new and existing construction developments for rent in perpetuity,” she said.

To be eligible, developments must offer tenants leases of at least 10 years. Tenants can request shorter agreements if they wish and the development will still qualify for the exemption. Tenants may terminate their lease at any time, subject to 56 days’ notice.

“We believe that security of tenure is essential for people who rent. This requirement will allow people to settle in and personalize their home, reduce the frequency with which they have to find new accommodation and all moving costs. associates, especially as people face the costs of life challenges and help them build and maintain connections with their community,” she said today.

“We recognize the important role that the build-to-let sector can play in filling a gap in the general rental market by increasing the supply, density and diversity of housing.

“Aotearoa New Zealand needs to build more homes where they are needed and at prices affordable to low-to-moderate income households. Building for rental can help continue the current momentum of new supply and improve quality rental units with new homes that are warm, dry and safe,” she said.

A spokesman for Woods denied it was a turnaround because the announcement on interest deductibility last year indicated the minister would do more work on the construction sector for rent.

Leonie Freeman, Managing Director of the Property Council.  Photo / Doug Sherring
Leonie Freeman, Managing Director of the Property Council. Photo / Doug Sherring

Leonie Freeman, chief executive of the Property Council, welcomed the turnaround.

“Today’s announcement is one of the best levers to unlock the potential of build-to-let. We support the government’s drive to allow build-to-let to provide warm, dry rental accommodation that provide Kiwis with long-term security of tenure,” she said.

Woods said the legislation would be presented to parliament at the end of August.

The Herald reported how Woods was seeking policy advice to encourage the build-to-rent market.

Last November, Todd of Ockham said the government wanted to eliminate mortgage interest deductions on loans for purpose-built rental properties, which would put existing urban properties in Ockham at a huge disadvantage to be built for rental.

Teachers and emergency service workers were among the buildings’ long-term tenants, but may have to find new homes if Ockham sells, he said.

“It’s weird that [Housing Minister] Megan Woods supports the BTR sector to provide more new, warm and safe occupancy properties, but [Revenue Minister David] Parker is happy to kill vendors who already follow government policy,” Todd complained last year.

“I could be forced to sell 85 rental units worth $60 million to $80 million if the interest, which is the main cost of owning these buildings, becomes non-deductible,” Todd said, referring to the apartments that the company owns at Sandringham, Gray Lynn, Ellerslie and Mt. Albert.

Mark Todd of Ockham at Domaine Wintergarden.  Photo / Fiona Goodall, Getty Images
Mark Todd of Ockham at Domaine Wintergarden. Photo / Fiona Goodall, Getty Images

On a single project, Ockham could lose a $500,000 mortgage interest tax deduction, he said. He cited a $22 million development 50% funded by an $11 million loan, resulting in annual interest charges of $500,000, Todd said in November.

The rental construction industry is growing rapidly at home and abroad.

Thousands of new build apartments for rent in Auckland are planned and many are being developed by NZX-listed Kiwi Property, expanding in Sylvia Park and due to start soon in its LynnMall.

Greg and Helen Reidy’s Reidy & Co and Kim Barrett’s Resident Properties are also developing apartments to be built on three sites in central Auckland and bought an Ockham block a few months ago.

Reidy said he expects the first three apartment buildings to have a total value of about $210 million.

$160 million deal reached to advance next-generation aerial firefighting platforms

August 11, 2022

Montana Lending

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DA Davidson, a team of capital market professionals, assessed and closed $160 million in industrial development revenue and revenue repayment obligations for Bridger Aerospace, a Montana-based aviation services provider.

The deal represents one of the largest taxable unrated municipal ESG bonds in the country.

Proceeds from the bond will help Bridger Aerospace fund two aircraft hangars to be located at Gallatin Field in Belgrade, Montana, and acquire four new SuperScooper firefighting aircraft.

“Bridger Aerospace operates the largest and most sophisticated fleet of firefighting aircraft, and as it redefines its technology to meet the emerging challenges of aerial wildfire fighting, we are grateful to have the opportunity to provide the financial solutions necessary to support a strategy of continued growth”, said Kyle Thomas, CEO of DA Davidson.

Founded in 2014 and led by current CEO and former Navy SEAL Tim Sheehy, Bridger is a company focused on addressing the year-round threat of economic and environmental damage caused by wildfires.

Through its fleet of aircraft and FireTRAC, its data collection, aerial surveillance and reporting platform, Bridger provides its federal agency and state government customers with a range of aerial response solutions. against fires.

Meet the Dallas 500: Rob C. Holmes

August 10, 2022

Montana Economy

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Over the past year, Texas Capital Bank President and CEO Rob Holmes has implemented a new company-wide strategy, recapitalized and restructured the company, increased the number employees in key departments and lines of business, more than doubled the bank’s front-line team and obtained FINRA Approval for its investment banking division and affiliate broker.

Most recently, Texas Capital Bank provided $5 million in funding to Lendistry, a minority-owned technology lender that aims to help underserved communities, to expand into Texas with an office in Dallas.

In Holmes’ Extended 2022 Dallas 500 Q&A, he talks about how many times it took him to score a second date with his wife, the future of fintech in banking, and much more.

Education: Southern Methodist University (MBA), University of Texas at Austin (BA-Economics)

Place of birth: Dallas, TX

First job: “My first job was packing groceries in a grocery store. This experience taught me very early on the importance of customer service and satisfaction. I learned that I really liked customer-facing roles and I’ve been in customer service my entire career. »

Best Advice: “One of my mentors and boss from very early in my career, who remains a mentor today, was discussing a promotion with me and he noted that in order for me to advance I didn’t need his vote, but from that of all my peers – which I try to win every day.

Having dinner : “I was having dinner with Robert B. Cullum who founded Tom Thumb and Page Drug, among other banners, years ago because he was very successful but also very civic with an exceptional focus on community. And he happens to be my grandfather. I would also invite Dan D. Rogers, vice president of Mercantile National Bank, who happens to be my great-grandfather, who could provide me with excellent advice and guidance.

Destination of choice: “When I have the chance to travel, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends in Big Sky, Montana. The beauty of the Pacific Northwest and the various fly fishing rivers are always a welcome retreat. That said, I’m a Texan and really love the rich history and diverse culture of South Texas.”

Non-profit cause: “I usually find myself involved in organizations and passionate about causes that support either underprivileged children or our country’s great veterans and first responders in our community.”

Hobbies/Hobbies: “My passion is my family. We are very close and spend as much time as possible together. I also enjoy fly fishing and quail hunting when I get the chance.

Fun fact: “I had to ask my wife, Charlyn, 7 times to go on a second date with me. She finally said yes.

Dream car: “I always wanted an older model Defender, but I could never justify the price.”

Most difficult challenge: “Two days in particular stand out for me as the toughest of my career: 9/11 and the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers on September 15, 2008. I was in New York working on both days. I vividly remember seeing the second plane fly into the building and then seeing both buildings fall on 9/11. That night, I had to stay at my boss’ apartment, because I couldn’t go back to my hotel. I took a bus to work the next morning at 5:30 in Midtown. And I remember being one of the few to go out that morning. I went to work because other colleagues just couldn’t get in. And then I remember being at the bank on Sunday evening, September 14, 2008, when scenarios were discussed regarding the consequences of the failure of Lehman or other banks. The next day, Lehman filed the largest bankruptcy petition in US history, involving more than $600 billion in assets.

Moments of pride: “There is not one action I would like to report, but rather a series of regular and thoughtful actions each of which strengthens the team, the culture and the record that gives us the confidence to say firmly that we can offer something distinct to our customers and shareholders.. We know what this bank can be, and the significant actions of the last seven months have all been essential in setting up this next step.

Better DFW: “The social, economic and business transformation that Dallas has undergone over the past decade has already made it one of the most exciting, dynamic and desirable cities in the world in which to work, live or raise a family.”

Must read: “When I arrived at the bank, I made everyone read The cultural code by Daniel Coyle. It’s a transformative book about the power of high performing groups.

Bucket list: “The only thing on my bucket list right now would be to lead Texas Capital in a way that has a profound effect on the development and growth of the next generation of employees and their future success. In 2021, we launched the whole thing. the bank’s first junior program, and we are already seeing the impacts of this innovative and exciting group in our ranks.

Future forecast: “We are clearly located in one of the best markets in the country to offer customer solutions that will rival any competitor. We are more well capitalized than ever. And we have the leadership, talent and commitment to meet the challenges ahead and achieve our vision. We are building the leading financial services company in Texas, serving the best clients in our markets. »

Fintech innovations: “Our approach to responding to fintech innovation is less about adapting and more about keeping pace with digital change to meet the needs of our customers. Our hedging model outlined in our strategy is supported by several digital modernization initiatives focused on securing the right to do business with our customers. This means having APIs on key products that are integrated with our customers’ platform of choice, providing advanced analytics and data products that work seamlessly across our customers’ financial lifecycles, and optimizing for high contact and self-service.

“The broader fintech ecosystem is as accessible to us as it is to others. Our strategy to keep pace is to continuously analyze, innovate and/or acquire. We periodically analyze the market for new technologies and have deep insight into the fintech market through our technology banking business We are increasingly active in fintech and the broader tech community, actively partnering and acquiring key technologies that we believe will will help bring value to our customers.


Ben Swanger is the associate editor of CEOthe business title of Magazine D. Ben manages the Dallas 500

Bank of Valletta removes high balance fees on business deposits

August 9, 2022

Montana Lending

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Bank of Valletta will no longer charge high balance fees on deposits to non-personal customers, following the interest rate hike by the European Central Bank.

The high balance fee was introduced following the negative interest rate scenario that prevailed until the end of July 2022.

BOV specifies in a press release that the fee has been withdrawn from the tariff of charges as of August 1, 2022.

Albert Frendo, director of corporate banking, said BOV is following and adapting to the changing environment. “We ensure that changes in market dynamics are reflected in our pricing and business strategy.”

The ECB raised its key rate by 0.5 percentage points to 0% last month and plans further hikes this year in a bid to calm runaway inflation. The rate has been negative since 2014 in an effort to revive the eurozone economy after years of weak growth.

But with inflation on the rise, the ECB has been forced to intervene, even as economists fear the European economy could slip into recession.

Frendo said BOV ensures that the level of corporate deposits is sustainable and within required parameters. “With this in mind, we ensure that any benefits resulting from market changes flow immediately to the customer, while effectively managing negative changes as much as possible,” he said.

The bank said its decision was part of other efforts to support Maltese entrepreneurs. “In an ensuing period of inflation, the bank continues to ensure that it remains the leading provider of trade finance, underpinned by strong credit fundamentals and effective feasibility assessments to continue to support sustainable economic growth in the various economic sectors that drive the Maltese economy,” says Frendo.

Kendall Spray named director of women’s basketball operations

August 9, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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FORT MYERS, Florida. – One of the most prolific three-point shooters in NCAA history, Kendall Vaporizer has been named director of operations for the nationally ranked FGCU women’s basketball program, as announced by the head coach Karl Smesko today.

“We’re really excited to have Kendall back on our program,” Smesko said. “Kendall has great energy, great attention to detail and great enthusiasm for the game. She also has a great ability to connect with people.”

Spray played one season for the Eagles helping the Greens and Blues win the 2022 ASUN Championship crown before reaching the second round of the NCAA Tournament following a thrilling win over fifth-seeded, No. 16 Virginia Tech.

The Mt. Juliet, Tenn., native finished her college career ranked fourth all-time in NCAA history with 466 three-pointers in 154 games between UT Martin, Clemson and the Eagles.

Overall, she scored 1,900 points in five seasons for an average of 12.3 points per game. During that time, Spray made 466 out of 1,169 field goal attempts for an average of .399. In her only year with the Vert et Bleu, she was 103 of 226 (.456) for second all-time in program history for single-season trebles. His 45.6% shooting percentage from deep also ranks third for a single season. Spray’s 103 three-pointers last season were also the second of his career. In 2017-18, she hit an Ohio Valley Conference record 125 as a sophomore with UT Martin.

After the season, Spray put on a show in front of a national ESPN audience by winning the 3-point Women’s Championship from Rocket Mortgage. The graduate student scored 18 points in the first round, 25 in the semifinals and 23 in the championship round to win the title. The crowd and ESPN announcers were mesmerized as Spray cleaned rack after rack at every turn.

The FGCU, ranked No. 20 in the latest WBCA poll of the season, finished 2021-22 with an overall record of 30-3 after advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. This marked the eighth NCAA Tournament appearance for the Eagles in the last 11 years and the fifth in a row. Les Vert et Bleu won their ninth ASUN league title to earn the spot, while the 30 wins marked the fifth time in the last eight seasons to reach the milestone.

For full coverage of the women’s basketball schedule, follow the Eagles on Twitter and instagram to @FGCU_WBB, the Facebook at /fgcuwbb and online at You can also sign up to receive news about FGCU women’s basketball or other programs straight to your inbox by visiting

IT NEEDS A TEAM to achieve our most recent goal – a $10 million campaign to address the needs of student-athletes for continued academic success, life skills, mental health, nutrition, strength and conditioning as well as needs of the department for expansion and improvement of facilities as well as mentoring and leadership training for coaches and staff. The name embodies our mission and the goal of the EAGLE – Eagle Athletics Generating Lifetime Excellence campaign. Join our team and commit your donation today to help the Eagles of tomorrow!


Do you enjoy watching or following the FGCU women’s basketball program? Would you like to play a role in the growth of the program and help it reach heights never reached before? If so, you can contact Director of Advancement, Matt Ring, to learn about opportunities to impact the experiences of our student-athletes. He can be contacted by email at [email protected] or by desk phone at 239-745-4434.

FGCU Head Coach Karl Smesko maintains a career record of 610-128 (.826) overall, which is the third-highest winning percentage among active Division I coaches behind only UConn’s Geno Auriemma and LSU’s Kim Mulkey. He also led the Eagles to a 232-18 (.930) ASUN regular season record and a 30-2 (.933) ASUN tournament record. In the previous 10 seasons, he guided FGCU to a 153-5 (.968) conference record with six undefeated seasons. The 12-time ASUN Coach of the Year has led the program to 12 consecutive 25-win seasons and 18 consecutive 20-win campaigns, including more than 30 wins in five of the last eight years. On top of all that, the Eagles are 549-101 (.845) since Smesko started the program in the 2002-03 season, and the Greens and Blues’ all-time winning percentage of .845 is the best in NCAA Division I. the history of women’s basketball.

FGCU Athletics sponsors events in November and April to benefit the FGCU Campus Food Pantry ( and the Harry Chapin Food Bank (, FGCU Athletics Charities of Choice. For more information, including how to make a contribution, please visit and use the hashtag #FeedFGCU to help raise awareness.

FGCU teams have combined to win an incredible 92 conference regular season and tournament titles in just 15 seasons at the Division I level. Additionally, in just 11 seasons of DI playoff eligibility, the Eagles brought together 45 teams or individuals competing in NCAA championships. In 2022, the men’s golf team became the first program to qualify for the NCAA Tournament. Eight FGCU programs ranked in the top 25 nationally in their respective sports, including women’s basketball (#20, 2021-22), beach volleyball (#20, 2022) and men’s soccer (2018, 2019) and women’s football. (2018) as four of the most recent. In 2016-17, the Vert et Bleu posted the department’s best sixth place finish in the DI-AAA Learfield Directors’ Cup and top 100 nationally, ahead of several Power-5 and FBS institutions. In 2018-19, the Eagles had an ASUN and Florida State’s top seven teams won the NCAA Public Recognition Award for their rate of academic progression in their sport. FGCU also collectively achieved a record 3.50 in-class GPA in the fall 2020 semester and outperformed the general undergraduate college population for 26 consecutive semesters. The last five semesters (Fall 2019 – Spring 2022) saw another milestone reached as all 15 programs achieved a cumulative team average of 3.0 or higher. The Eagles also served an all-time high of 7,200 volunteer hours in 2017 – being recognized as one of two finalists for the inaugural NACDA Community Service Award presented by the Fiesta Bowl.


2022 Homeowner’s Net Worth Increases in All US States Except NJ

August 9, 2022

Montana Loans

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NEW JERSEY — New data from real estate information analyzer ATTOM Data Solutions has revealed that, from the first quarter of 2022 through the second, the percentage of mortgaged residential properties considered “equity-rich” increased in the United States, exception of a State.

According to the ATTOM US Home Equity & Underwater report released on Thursday, the only outlier is New Jersey, which saw its ratio drop from 38.6% to 37.9%.

ATTOM defines “equity-rich” as properties with estimated loan balances no greater than 50% of their market value.

In the United States, on average, the percentage of mortgaged homes deemed “equity-rich” in the second quarter of 2022 fell from 44.9% in the first quarter of 2022 to 34.4% in the second quarter of 2021, ATTOM reported.

“After 124 consecutive months of rising home prices, it’s no surprise that the percentage of equity-rich homes is the highest we’ve ever seen and the percentage of seriously underwater loans is the lowest. “said Rick Sharga, executive vice president of business intelligence at ATTOM. “As home price appreciation appears to be slowing due to rising mortgage interest rates, it seems likely that homeowners will continue to rely on the record amount of equity they have available for the rest of 2022.”

The latest increase affected nearly half of all mortgage payers and marked the ninth straight quarterly increase in homes’ share of the equity-rich designation, the curator added. In fact, the report found that at least half of all mortgage payers in 18 states were considered “stock-rich” in the second quarter of 2022, up from just three states a year earlier.

2.9% of mortgages (1 in 34) were also considered “seriously underwater” in the second quarter of 2022, which represents a combined estimated balance of loans secured by the property of at least 25% more than the estimated market value of the property, by ATTOM. That’s down from 3.2% of all US homes with a mortgage in the previous quarter and 4.1%, or 24 properties, a year ago.

New Jersey, however, was one of three states where the percentage of seriously underwater homes increased from the first quarter to the second quarter of this year, from 2.9 percent to 3 percent. In fact, more than 25% of mortgaged properties in the Philadelphia area have been reported as severely underwater, ATTOM said. The other states listed were Montana (from 3 to 3.9%) and New York (from 2.7 to 2.8%).

In contrast, ATTOM says it is seeing a current wave of migration from high-cost areas of the United States to the South and Southeast as equity-rich mortgages increase in the region. The South and Midwest also saw most of the largest declines in severely underwater properties in states like Mississippi (share of severely underwater mortgaged homes down 17 to 8.1%) and Missouri ( down from 6.6 to 5.2%).

The ATTOM US Home Equity & Underwater report analyzed properties based on several measures of equity – or loan to value (LTV) – at the state, metro, county and zip code level, as well as the percentage of total properties with a mortgage that each equity category represents. To see the full methodology and report, Click here.

Congress Passes CHIPS Act, Flathead Manufacturing Benefits Expected

August 8, 2022

Montana Economy

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President Joe Biden is about to sign into law the CHIPS and Science Act, a $280 billion piece of legislation recently passed by Congress and designed to strengthen the U.S. semiconductor industry and increase the country’s competitive advantage in China. The legislation is a welcome development for Flathead Valley, where Applied Materials, one of the nation’s largest semiconductor makers, operates 350,000 square feet of engineering and manufacturing space in Kalispell.

Applied Materials has been operating in the Flathead since 2009, when it acquired Kalispell-based semiconductor producer Semitool for $364 million, taking over its facilities off West Reserve Drive. Since then, its operations in the area have grown significantly, making it one of Flathead’s largest employers. In addition to the West Reserve Drive site, the company moved to the old Shopko building in Evergreen earlier this year, creating 200 new jobs in manufacturing, engineering and business administration. Today, Applied Materials employs 825 people in Flathead.

The semiconductor maker stands to benefit from recently passed legislation that offers $54 billion in grants for semiconductor manufacturing and research, tens of billions in funding for regional tech hubs and a tax credit that will cover 25% of investment in semiconductor manufacturing through 2026. Congressional architects of the act said passage of CHIPS will result in 300,000 well-paying jobs across the country, as well as significant progress towards a competitive advantage over the Chinese semiconductor industry.

“At a time when semiconductor leadership is more important than ever to the economy,” said Gary Dickerson, president and CEO of Applied Materials, “this crucial legislation will strengthen manufacturing and chip innovation, create jobs and strengthen the semiconductor supply chain in Montana and the United States. states.”

The CHIPS Act has won broad bipartisan support, a notable feat in a Congress that has been largely unable to overcome partisan gridlock in recent months. The Senate passed the bill 64 to 33 and the House, 243 to 187.

Montana Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., and Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., voted in favor of CHIPS.

“I fought for this bill to reverse the trend of outsourcing critical manufacturing to foreign countries and instead invest in rural America by stimulating high-tech production at home, strengthening supply chains supply and increasing domestic research and development,” Tester said in a statement. Release.

Daines released a statement echoing similar sentiments. “Investing in U.S. semiconductor production, innovation, STEM education, and R&D is critical to bolstering our national security, strengthening America’s position as a global leader, and winning the race against China.” , said the senator.

Rep. Matt Rosendale was in the minority to vote against the bill. On July 28, Rosendale retweeted a statement from the House Freedom Caucus, a conservative Republican congressional caucus, stating that CHIPS “not only adds $79 billion to the deficit, but is also loaded with crony capitalist papers, climate initiatives from the Green New Deal and Radicals’ woke politicians Worse still, its passage (sic) in the Senate – with the help of 17 Senate Republicans – opened the door to even more runaway spending in the Democrats’ reconciliation deal with $400 billion in spending on Liberal priorities and some $700 billion in tax hikes.

As the United States continues to struggle with a severe shortage of semiconductors, Montana lawmakers hope the CHIPS Act will boost manufacturing across the state, moving supply chains forward while strengthening the national economy. and local.

Chuck Hoskin: Cherokee Nation extends assistance to homeowners

August 8, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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Indianz.Com > News > Chuck Hoskin: Cherokee Nation Expands Landlord Assistance

Clifford and Esther Littledave, of Mayes County, Oklahoma, recently found help through the Cherokee Nation Homeowners Assistance Fund. The program helps eligible citizens who are experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Photo: Anadisgoi/Cherokee Nation

Help Available for Cherokee Owners Facing Hardship Due to the Pandemic

Monday, August 8, 2022

Cherokee Nation

All families deserve to live in safety and dignity, without fear of losing their homes. During the economic uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, some Cherokee homeowners have fallen behind on their mortgages or fallen into financial difficulty making payments. To ensure Cherokee families can stay in their homes, the Cherokee Nation Housing Authority is expanding the tribe’s Homeowners Assistance Fund (HAF) program. Qualified homeowners can apply for forgivable loans through the HAF. The loans are fully funded by federal dollars as part of the US bailout. They can be used to cover overdue mortgage payments, overdue home insurance premiums, overdue property taxes, or other debts that could displace homeowners if not paid. Once approved, funding goes directly to the mortgage loan officer. The financial assistance program is already helping Cherokees find more stability and security in their homes. The pandemic has taken a toll on many of our fellow Cherokees, increasing their physical, mental and financial stress. But it was also an opportunity for all of us to come together in the spirit of Gadugi, working together for the greater good. We know this program will directly impact hundreds of Cherokee families, while strengthening our communities and having positive generational impacts for everyone. Cherokees on our reservation and neighboring areas have access to the Tribe’s HAF program. The Housing Authority will give priority to homeowners located in counties comprising the reservation, which encompasses all or part of Oklahoma’s 14 northeastern counties. It will then extend to Cherokees who own homes in a county in Oklahoma, Kansas, or Arkansas that borders the Cherokee Nation reservation. Availability is also based on household income. Previously, this program was only open to people with mortgages through the Cherokee Nation or the Cherokee Nation Housing Authority, but now we are opening it to all Cherokee mortgage holders who meet the eligibility criteria. The expanded Homeowners Relief Fund will be available until funds are exhausted, which our housing experts estimate through 2026. For more information and a full list of eligibility criteria, visit /HAF or call 918-456-5482. For some families, finding affordable housing is a lifelong struggle that has been exacerbated by the pandemic. We know the need for stable and secure housing is high, and it will remain so as the economy adjusts. Deputy Chief Bryan Warner, the Council, and my administration made housing a high priority with the landmark Housing, Jobs, and Sustainable Communities Act in 2019, which was renewed and expanded earlier this year. HJSCA has provided more than $120 million to meet the diverse housing needs of the Cherokee people, the largest real estate investment in history. More than that, HJSCA has incorporated into Cherokee Nation law that housing is one of the Cherokee Nation’s highest priorities. Setting this tone is what has spurred programs such as the Homeowners Relief Fund and will spur many more ideas in the future. The HAF is just one of many programs offered by the Cherokee Nation to meet the housing needs of our citizens. Others include the New Construction Home Ownership Program to pave the way for home ownership for Cherokee families, housing repairs for seniors and disabled Cherokees who need assistance. to maintain their home, emergency rental assistance, etc. A full list of programs is available on the Housing Authority of the Cherokee Nation website,

Chuck Hoskin Jr.
Chuck Hoskin Jr. is the 18th elected Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation, the largest Indian tribe in the United States. He is only the second elected Principal Chief of the Vinita Cherokee Nation, the first being Thomas Buffington, who served from 1899 to 1903. Prior to being elected Principal Chief, Hoskin served as the Tribe’s Secretary of State. He was also a member of the Cherokee Nation Council, representing District 11 for six years.

Montana, where American still works

August 6, 2022

Montana Economy

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I am a lucky American.

Thanks to my wife Colleen’s work as a travel agent, for the past two weeks I have been to Europe and back.

I was able to accompany Colleen, as I often do, when she took a tour group to the French wine region of Bordeaux.

While I was away, things seemed to start looking up a bit at home.

The Biden administration was still doing its best to cripple the economy, bankrupt the federal government, and destroy our energy industry with its senseless green policies.

But the stock market rebounded well.

National gasoline prices continued their slow slide towards $4.25 per gallon (except in California).

And Nancy Pelosi didn’t start World War III by visiting Taiwan.

While I was in Europe, a friend from Pittsburgh, a former journalist named Bill Steigerwald, drove from western Pennsylvania to Montana with his wife and daughter.

It’s a 1,900 mile road trip – one way – but Bill is used to driving across America and meeting strangers. He still thinks it’s fun at 74.

For decades he did what he calls “drive-thru journalism” for the Los Angeles Times (in the 1980s) and two Pittsburgh dailies.

And in 2010, for his book “Dogging Steinbeck,” he carefully traced John Steinbeck’s road trip around the United States in 1960 and turned it into his iconic bestseller “Travels With Charley.”

Bill drove alone, covered 11,276 miles in about 40 days, and met hundreds of Americans from Maine to California. Unlike many journalists, he liked 99.9% of the people he met.

Bill still meets – and, as he puts it, “softly asks” – people all the time when he travels.

This week, in an email from sparsely populated central Montana, he wrote, “Don’t worry too much about the future, Mike.

“Last week, I met half a dozen everyday hard-working people here proving that DC politicians can’t completely destroy America with their bad policies.”

In Lewistown, a population of 6,000, Bill said he met Brandon O’Halloran, a former schoolteacher in his 40s who owns and operates the Rising Trout Café on Main Street.

Brandon and his wife Mariah have three children and live on a small, all-organic ranch and wheat farm outside of town.

Three mornings a week, he comes in around 5:30 a.m., roasts his own coffee, and whips up a stack of cinnamon rolls and breakfast sandwiches.

“He’s optimistic, friendly and apolitical, a wise mix of liberal and conservative,” Bill wrote. “You would never know that the country is in trouble or that its wheat crop failed last year because of the weather.”

Bill is staying in his wife’s family’s log cabin in the dense forest near the thriving former silver mining town of Neihart, now home to around 50 people.

In “downtown” Neihart, on Highway 89, which passes through the mountainous Lewis & Clark National Forest and its few still-active Minutemen silos, is “The Inconvenience Store”.

A co-op, it is run on a shoestring and owned and managed by a dedicated team of colorful and friendly residents.

The invaluable store serves as a morning coffee for elders, a community center and is the only place for many miles where you can buy bread, milk and water.

Almost next door to the Co-op is Bob’s Bar Restaurant & Motel.

The modest combo was purchased about five years ago by a 40-something Indiana entrepreneur named Janice, who even cleans the rooms herself (to make sure they’re done right) .

Her funky bar caters to tourists, locals, skiers and passing bikers and she has just hired a new cook specializing in prime rib and grilled salmon.

Janice has the only gasoline for sale in 40 miles and she knows the locals depend on her.

“She charges $6.50 a gallon,” Bill reported.

“It’s stiff – but fair. When her two old gas pumps stop working due to vapor locks, she pulls out her gear and pumps out what you need herself.

That’s how America has always worked, Bill says — in the middle of Montana, anyway.

Michael Reagan, son of President Ronald Reagan, is an author, speaker, and president of the Reagan Legacy Foundation. Send comments to [email protected] and follow @reaganworld on Twitter.

‘Quasi-preneurs’ see opportunities and challenges in franchising | Lifestyles

August 6, 2022

Montana Lending

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By MAE ANDERSON – AP Business Writer

NEW YORK (AP) — In 2020, Kelly Jackson and Davina Arceneaux wanted to quit their corporate jobs and become business owners. They were looking for something that was both COVID-proof and recession-proof.

Instead of completely stepping out of a corporate umbrella, they turned to franchising. Both worried about notoriously tight restaurant margins. They considered a drug testing franchise, but the initial investment was too high.

A franchise mentor told them about Motto Mortgage Home Services, and Jackson and Arceneaux opened one in Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois, in July 2020 with an initial investment of $35,000.

“People always need new places to live and always buy and sell houses,” Jackson said. It takes rising interest rates in stride. “Interest rates go up and down, that’s what they do, it’s part of the industry.”

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Jackson and Arceneaux, who had served as senior IT program and project manager and assistant restaurant manager, respectively, had no mortgage experience, but Motto Mortgage provided training and support.

“You don’t necessarily need experience in this industry to fit into this category, the brand will train you,” said Matt Haller, president and CEO of the International Franchise Association.

In the months following the outbreak of the pandemic, many people in corporate jobs decided to step aside, in what is known as the “great resignation”. They looked for alternatives, including opening a franchise with an established brand.

Quasi-preneurs who open franchises say they like the opportunity to buy a proven brand and access to tools and operations you wouldn’t get if you were starting your own small business. But the franchise also comes with many challenges. There are many rules and regulations to follow. Contracts are long and can be difficult to terminate.

The number of U.S. franchises rose about 3% in 2021 to 774,965 after a decline in 2020, according to the IFA. These include large franchises like McDonald’s or 7-Eleven, but all types of businesses can be franchised, from pool cleaners to hair salons.

There are approximately 3,000 franchise brands in the United States. The IFA predicts that the number of franchises in the United States will increase by 2% to 792,014 this year. This is still only a fraction of the 32.5 million total small businesses in the United States.

Franchise owners purchase with an upfront fee – ranging from tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars – to get their business, then pay a monthly royalty percentage. In return, they get use of the brand name and marketing, as well as other media.

A classically trained pastry chef, Helen Kim has often dreamed of owning her own bakery. But when she decided to go it alone, Kim thought building a business from scratch would be “too big a mountain for me to climb.”

While working at the Aria Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, Kim was a frequent customer of Paris Baguette. She was impressed and last year bought a Paris Baguette franchise in the city with her sister.

Although the financial requirements are strict — according to the company’s website, franchisees need a net worth of $1.5 million and $500,000 in cash — Kim said it’s worth it . Although money invested in a franchise is always at risk if the business fails, brand recognition and support from the franchisor provides more of a safety net than establishing an unknown brand.

However, getting used to a franchise structure can be an adjustment. When Chris Dordell and husband Jason Fenske decided to quit their jobs at Wells Fargo and Salesforce and open two Pilates Clubs in 2018 and a YogaSix studio in 2020, in and around Palm Springs, they appreciated the playbook provided by the franchisor Xponential.

“It was interesting at this point after having been in corporate jobs for over 20 years that we could plug into an existing model,” Dordell said.

But Dordell said you have to adapt to company rules. Some costs incurred while building the franchises could have been reduced, but “to maintain consistency across the business, we needed to follow the model.”

If a franchisor changes direction or is sold, a franchisee may be left behind.

Tom Lee and his wife opened a home health care franchise, Home Care Assistance, in Burlington, Vermont, in late 2016 after Lee decided to quit his career in sales management for a large corporation. After initially investing $300,000 and spending three years living on savings without receiving a salary, the business began to take off.

Lee currently employs 65 carers and posted double-digit profit increases in 2020 and 2021. But the franchisor changed ownership and began buying out franchisees to operate them privately. In 2022 it was rebranded as The Key, leaving the approximately 20 remaining franchisees, still known as Home Care Assistance, in limbo.

Lee said he still pays a 5% monthly royalty, but doesn’t receive the same support. The Key made an offer to buy the business, but it was well below market value, Lee said.

Key did not respond to a request for comment.

“They no longer have the staff to support us,” he said. “They’ve really dropped the brand.”

As with any business venture, franchisees need to be aware of what they are getting into.

Mario Herman, a Washington-based attorney who focuses on franchise litigation, said it’s important for potential franchisees to carefully review contracts to make sure nothing is obscured like previous bankruptcies or a lack of profitability.

Earlier this year, the Federal Trade Commission sued Burgerim, a franchiser of the Calabasas, Calif., burger chain, which it said tricked 1,500 people into paying $50,000 to $70,000 in fees to open restaurants. franchises without giving them enough information about the risks. Burgerim promised a refund if franchisees couldn’t open a restaurant but didn’t deliver, according to the complaint. Burgerim did not respond to a request for comment.

“If done right, (a franchise is) great, but you have to be extremely careful,” Herman said. “There are a lot of frauds out there.”

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

Jury awards former MHP soldier $114,000, DOJ appeals | 406 Politics

August 6, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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The Montana Department of Justice appealed a Park County case in which a jury found the department responsible for the early resignation of a Montana Highway Patrol trooper.

In May, a Park County jury awarded Shawn Fowler, who was hired as a Montana Highway Patrol Private in 2001, more than $114,000 after finding his supervisors had created an unreasonably hostile work environment by response to his professional performance during a DUI investigation in 2015.

Fowler sued the Justice Department and the Montana Highway Patrol in 2019 for wrongful discharge. He also sued the Montana Federation of Public Employees, the union for state employees, for failing to address his grievances against the agency.

The trial in May lasted four days. Fowler’s attorney, Karl Knuchel, said winning the jury meant showing that any reasonable person would have resigned under the terms his supervisors imposed on Fowler.

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Knuchel said Fowler brought the case, at least in part, to clear his name.

“I think Shawn did this more as a statement of his character and feeling like he was wronged by the department, even though he gave them 17 years of employment,” Knuchel said in a recent interview. .

The Department of Justice argued, however, that Fowler was subject only to the consequences of poor job performance and that the issues raised in Fowler’s complaints, such as scheduling, job duties and discipline, were at the discretion of the highway patrol in accordance with the collective agreement. with the MHP soldiers. Additionally, previous court cases have found employees covered by collective bargaining agreements to be excluded from wrongful dismissal claims, the DOJ argued.

A Justice Department spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment on the call before press time.

According to his initial filings in district court, Fowler’s fallout with the state began in 2015 when he investigated a hit-and-run in Sweet Grass County. Fowler issued multiple citations: leaving the scene of an accident, hit-and-run, reckless driving, and possession of drugs because he suspected the driver had used marijuana. Fowler obtained a blood sample from the driver, but did not cite them for a marijuana-impaired DUI because he was waiting for the state crime lab to do a blood test, according to the complaint. He did not make an arrest and the driver was allowed to leave.

Fowler’s initial decision not to cite the driver for a DUI would be the source of harassment, criticism and belittlement for years to come, according to court documents. Supervisors gave preference to the schedules of more junior soldiers, repeatedly questioned Fowler’s drug-fighting methods, withheld him from training conferences, and sent him a disciplinary letter for the incident of the Sweet Grass County in 2017, two years after the incident. In the spring of 2018, Fowler was disciplined again for failing to charge the suspect with a DUI, and he was removed from managing K-9 with the patrol.

The situation became ‘so intolerable’ that Fowler refinanced his mortgage and used the money to buy his remaining active duty so he could retire, rather than be fired by the Highway Patrol, court documents say. . In legal parlance, it’s called a “disguised discharge” and a Park County jury found in late May that the MHP had created an environment such that any reasonable person would also have quit.

Fowler had filed a grievance with the MHP near the end of his tenure with the Highway Patrol, arguing against a 2-day suspension and removal from K-9 duties. Then-Col. Tom Butler, the head of the MHP, denied the grievance, which would send the matter back to the union to decide whether to take the matter to arbitration. But the union’s board of directors, after reviewing the grievance, decided not to take the complaint to arbitration.

According to correspondence within the union regarding Fowler’s grievance contained in court documents, then-union director Quint Nyman summed up: “In a nutshell, he allowed a driver to leave the scene of an accident. … In discussing this issue with several soldiers, I was informed that they were surprised at the result and that he had not been fired.”

In its response to the lawsuit, the MFPE said the decision not to pursue Fowler’s grievance was in line with union policies. The union eventually settled with Fowler and was removed from the case.

The Justice Department sought to dismiss the case in district court, pointing out that Fowler’s grievance did not focus on the hostile work environment, but on the suspension and his K-9 duties. Because Fowler did not file a hostile work environment complaint through the union, he was barred from doing so in district court, especially after the 6-month statute of limitations set for disputes unions.

District Court Judge Brenda Gilbert rejected that argument in court proceedings, and the department appealed the dismissal to the state Supreme Court. Again, the High Court dismissed the state’s petition, but wrote that the Ministry of Justice was strictly prohibited from doing so until the normal appeal process, once the case was resolved by the court of district.

The Department of Justice filed its appeal on Thursday. The Risk Management and Tort Defense Division handles the case for the Department of Justice.

The program provides funding for internet access in rural areas

August 5, 2022

Montana Loans

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GREAT FALLS — Internet access is something many of us take for granted. Because it is so critical but absent in parts of rural America, the United States Department of Agriculture has about 50 programs to help meet the need, including the Reconnect program.

“The internet is the electricity of the 21st century. We just have to have it,” said Kathleen Williams, USDA’s rural development director in Montana.

“A program that aims to help bridge the digital divide here in Montana and nationally by providing loans and grants to build, improve, or acquire facilities and equipment needed to provide high-speed Internet access in areas rural areas,” said Williams, describing the Reconnect Program.

Williams said in this fourth round of funding announced Aug. 4, more than $1 billion is available for projects nationwide.

“There’s up to $150 million in loans, then $300 million in a loan-for-grant combination option, then $700 million in grants,” Williams explained. “These funds come from the Rural Development of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act.”

How beneficial can this funding be?

“(In) round three there was an area in south Bitterroot that is actually going to be serviced now. There is an area straddling the Montana and North Dakota border that is going to be serviced, as well as the Fort Peck Indian Reservation and adjacent areas,” Williams said.

State and local governments, businesses, tribes and cooperatives can begin applying September 6 for fourth-round funding.

A the workshop is available to help you with the application process or you can contact Peter Hawkes by phone at 208-339-1104 or by email at [email protected]

Williams said processing the award and distributing funds for any approved applications will likely take at least six months.


Cannabis coffee pods are coming to Missouri — Greenway Magazine

August 3, 2022

Montana Economy

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This is the second partnership Missouri’s Own has formed with a non-cannabis company, following the recent launch of Twice Baked Red Hot. ripples with St. Louis-based chipmaker Old Vienna. Like the THC-infused chips, the cannabis-infused coffee pods are a first for Missouri.

“We couldn’t be more excited to partner with a local cannabis company dedicated to high-quality products,” Michelle said. Billonis, CEO of The Coffee Ethic. “We love that these products are sold at local dispensaries and boost our economy.”


Show-me Organics, based in Springfield, Missouri, is committed to bringing world-class cannabis products to Missouri patients. A product-driven, patient-focused company, Show-Me Organics is the parent company of brands like Vivid, Blue Sage Cannabis Company, and Buoyant Bob. For more information, visit


Long live combines the precision of modern science with traditional hash-making techniques, bringing products to Missouri that are at the forefront of cannabis innovation globally. Long live The wide range of products stems from the brand’s focus on different cannabis consumers and is based on the understanding that cannabis affects everyone differently. Learn more about


Missouri’s Own is an edibles brand from Vivid that launched in March. The brand celebrates Missouri’s vast botanical diversity with flavors inspired by locally grown fruits, such as papaya, raspberry, Concord grape and more. Missouri’s Own also celebrates the flavors of the state by partnering with locally loved brands to create cannabis-infused versions of iconic local foods.


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Montana not in recession, economist says at Tuesday’s forum | New

August 2, 2022

Montana Loans

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Montana is not in a recession and is still enjoying strong job growth and wage gains above inflation, but things are slowing down significantly, said Patrick Barkey, chief economist at the Bureau of Business and Economics. Research.

Giving a mid-year economic update to Billings on Tuesday, Barkey noted that several things worked in Montana’s favor. The office is part of the University of Montana. Farm prices are up significantly from a year ago, rising revenues have resulted in an unprecedented $1.8 billion revenue surplus for the state government and pandemic-hit businesses are nearly fully reopened.

The challenge is persistent inflation that outlasts the state’s economic gains.

“We’re driving along the road, like we all are, and if you look in the rearview mirror, things just look dandy,” Barkey said. “When we look to the future, there are concerns. We are at a point where the economy is changing.

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Strong job growth, which was previously expected to extend through 2023, is now expected to decline significantly over the next three years. Consumer spending, positive in the short term, has moderated and is expected to decline further as the US Federal Reserve, attempting to cool the economy, continues to raise the interest rate at which banks lend to each other. The influence of these increases in lending rates is reflected upwards in the costs of mortgages, business loans and credit cards.

Barkey said his feeling is that the Federal Reserve’s lending rate increases to date have kept inflation down. Before previous recessions, lending rate increases were in step with the pace of inflation, but this time lending rates have been close to zero for years and only increased to 2.4 % after being unadjusted during the first quarters of inflation, which exceeded The Federal Reserve is trying to slow it down by making borrowing more expensive and therefore spending more substantial.

Simply put, there is plenty of room for the Federal Reserve to raise bank lending rates, which will not be popular.

Patrick Barkey of the University of Montana speaks about Montana’s economic recovery during the 2022 Mid-Year Economic Update hosted by the Bureau of Business and Economic Research at the DoubleTree in Billings on Tuesday morning.

AMY LYNN NELSON Billings Gazette

“We’re about to see an extraordinary year for Federal Reserve policy, because people won’t be happy, financial markets won’t be happy. If the Federal Reserve is really doomed to tame this increasingly entrenched inflation, which robs us all of our purchasing power, day after day, it won’t like it. There will be strong pressure to reverse due to weaker growth, which will shock a lot of people because we haven’t seen that lately. We’ve had tremendous growth, but I think we’re going to do better, Montana. Migration helps. I think housing markets are going to be stressed as a normal part of our supply chain.

As regulators try to cool spending on everything from wages to home purchases, other issues in the economy need to work themselves out. Last week, Ukraine exported wheat for the first time is an example of a supply problem improving in a way that should make grain more available and push prices down. Oil prices fall as expectations of increased demand decline to reflect recessionary spending patterns.

Barkey said wage growth has already slowed from the pace that led to a 35% year-over-year increase in income tax collections in 2020 and 2021. Another factor in the slowdown in income gains is the decline in federal stimulus payments seen in 2020 and 2021.

Has your crypto exchange gone bankrupt? The best money moves to make next, according to experts

August 2, 2022

Montana Lending

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Maneerate of Nattakorn /

This crypto winter has been particularly harsh following the recent collapse of several crypto platforms which left investors frustrated as to how to recover their assets.

Find out: Will Crypto recover? Here’s what you need to know
Discover: 7 things you should never do when planning your retirement

Crypto lending platforms Voyager Digital and Celsius promised eye-popping returns to their clients – until they both filed for bankruptcy in early July due to their exposure to the now infamous Three Arrows Capital, which has itself went bankrupt after the implosion of Terra LUNA and its stablecoin TerraUSD (UST).

Voyager makes loans, “usually in the form of a specific type of cryptocurrency, to counterparties in the cryptocurrency industry to facilitate liquidity or trade settlement and interest earned on company loans. are passed on to customers, who earn a ‘return’ on their cryptocurrency storage,” the company explained in the bankruptcy court filing.

Celsius, which had a similar pattern, said in its bankruptcy filing that “these Chapter 11 cases will provide debtors ‘respite’ to negotiate and implement a plan that will maximize the value of its business and generate recoveries. meaningful to our stakeholders as quickly as possible.”

According to the court filing, Celsius has a $1.2 billion deficit on its balance sheet and owes users $4.7 billion. The company says it has $167 million in cash, “which will provide sufficient liquidity to support certain operations during the restructuring process,” according to a statement announcing the Chapter 11 proceeding.

The collapse of Terra and the loss of over $50 billion in Luna and UST coin values ​​over a three-day period created a domino effect and immediate problems for many market participants, leading to the eventual “ cryptocalyse” and “many of these market participants have had to halt operations, limit withdrawals, or take out emergency rescue loans to survive,” according to Celsius’ bankruptcy filing.

And now, retail investors seem to have little to no options.

Is there a way to recover your loss?

Jeffrey Blockinger, general counsel for Web3 company Quadrata, told GOBankingRates that a user’s ability to recover assets will depend on asset segregation and the total amount of assets remaining on different companies’ balance sheets.

“It looks like most users will end up as creditors of the bankruptcy estate and will receive less than the amounts that have been deposited on the various platforms, if anything,” he said. “The process can take a long time. Generally, funds will be frozen until a count of all assets is completed and a user’s claim is deemed valid by the bankruptcy court.

“Celsius has previously warned that the funds could be unrecoverable and Voyager said some assets are held in FDIC-covered accounts. It remains to be seen what level of protection, if any, Voyager investors will receive through these accounts. If these platforms had insurance, users could recover some of their deposits, but the insurance is unlikely to cover all users’ total losses,” he continued.

Unfortunately for investors, on July 28, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the Federal Reserve Board took away all hope of recovering any money. In fact, the agencies issued a joint letter asking crypto brokerage firm Voyager Digital to stop telling clients that their investments were insured and demanded that the company remove any previous claims insinuating that clients who had invested with Voyager would receive FDIC insurance coverage for all funds. provided to, and owned by, Voyager.

“These representations are false and misleading. Based on the information gathered to date, it appears that these representations have likely been misleading and have been relied upon by customers who have placed their funds with Voyager and do not have immediate access to their funds,” according to the agencies.

How long could it take to recover even a little money?

Adding another layer of frustration, investors will need to be very patient as bankruptcy proceedings tend to be lengthy. Rahsan Boykin, general counsel for decentralized exchange Hashflow, told GOBankingRates that a typical bankruptcy proceeding can take three to four months, however, it would not be surprising if a proceeding of this size and visibility take a little longer.

Boykin added that there’s not much users can do to get their funds back at this time, as Voyager and Celsius view customers as “unsecured creditors” who will be the last to get their money back.

“Look at Mt. Gox as an example of what to expect. The exchange failed in 2014 and no one has been reimbursed yet,” he said. bankruptcy, but it seems unlikely to bring good news to customers.”

“Another aspect to watch is the role of strategic third-party players – we have seen FTX offer financial assistance to struggling companies in an effort to acquire assets at a discount,” he added.

He also shared that at this point, the best-case scenario for most users is probably only a partial refund and the ability to write off their tax losses in a few years.

Can these losses be used as tax deductions?

Jay Fraser, head of strategy at blockchain-enabled securities exchange BSTX, echoed the sentiment, telling GOBankingRates that what will most likely happen is that users will write off their holdings as bad debts. on their taxes, but they can only do that if it’s a total loss.

“With so much of the industry-wide collapse caused by Three Arrows’ defaults, the amount of money customers recover will depend on how much money can be recovered from Three Arrows,” a- he declared. “So far, that’s only been $40 million out of about $3 billion in loans. This experience, painful as it is, could be positive for the long-term adoption of crypto by institutional managers. With more guardrails and regulation that closely mirrors traditional finance, risk managers could enable greater exploration of crypto assets for institutional portfolios.

How should investors approach buying crypto in the future?

Although options are limited to recoup losses, experts recommend certain steps for investors before returning to crypto.

Hayden Hughes, CEO of crypto social trading platform Alpha Impact, told GOBankingRates that going back to crypto, consider dollar cost averaging, which is buying a fixed amount of investments each month.

“Use Twitter. Start following well-known crypto accounts. Unlike most other industries, in crypto news travels faster on Twitter,” he said. the subject of many rumors weeks before the suspension of withdrawals. Pay attention to traditional finance news: As of 2020, crypto has been highly correlated to the stock market. What’s bad for the stock market tends to be bad for crypto, and vice versa.

He also recommends finding an expert trader to follow, for example using a social trading platform, but remember to only take trading advice from someone whose background you know.

It is also crucial to watch the Fed, he said, because there is still a lot of uncertainty in traditional markets, due to the rapid increase in interest rates, which in turn would lead to a continued decline in stocks, crypto and other assets.

Learn: Are these cryptos the next Bitcoin or Ethereum?
See: What are Play-to-Earn games? Here are the 10 Best Crypto NFT Games of 2022

“Decide on your budget. Figure out how much of your salary should be spent on investments and what percentage crypto should take up in your overall portfolio,” he said. “And diversify with lower-risk investments. Crypto shouldn’t be your only investment. Consider ETFS, stocks, bonds and other assets.

More from GOBankingRates

About the Author

Yael Bizouati-Kennedy is a full-time financial journalist and has written for several publications, including Dow Jones, The Financial Times Group, Bloomberg and Business Insider. She has also worked as a VP/Senior Content Writer for major New York-based financial firms, including New York Life and MSCI. Yael is now independent and most recently co-authored the book “Blockchain for Medical Research: Accelerating Trust in Healthcare”, with Dr. Sean Manion. (CRC Press, April 2020) She holds two master’s degrees, including one in journalism from New York University and one in Russian studies from Toulouse-Jean Jaurès University, France.

Montana Democrats embrace new party platform ahead of election

August 1, 2022

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Montana Democrats gathered in their historic stronghold of Butte this weekend for the party’s 2022 Platform Convention, reaffirming support for positions critical to the party’s identity after a year of Republican control of the party. state that saw a rapid advance in conservative policies emerging from Helena.

Amendments to the Democrats’ platform were generally statements of principle. The party, for example, now explicitly supports the right to access abortion and contraception and declares that the planet is in a “state of climate emergency”.

But delegates endorsed several new policy goals, such as restoring the Judicial Appointments Commission, which was eliminated by Republicans last session; the creation of a commission to investigate human rights abuses at the state’s historic residential schools; and supporting support programs for workers “dislocated” through a transition away from fossil fuels, among others.

It was a relatively stable affair, especially compared to the GOP platform’s own convention a few weeks prior, and given the issues Democrats identified ahead of the November election: the loss of two Democratic seats between either legislative chamber could give Republicans a bicameral supermajority, allowing lawmakers to pass constitutional amendment ballots and other measures that require a two-thirds vote without Democratic votes.

There were no stump speeches from top candidates or party luminaries. Monica Tranel, the party’s candidate for Montana’s Western US House District and probably Montana Democrats’ best chance of electing one of their own to Congress this year, given the deep red hue of the state’s Eastern District , was absent. Faction fighting over personality or politics was minimal, or at least private, largely sidelined in favor of technical debates over syntax and semicolons.

“We are united this November,” State Party Executive Director Sheila Hogan said in a statement. “The recent Republican convention revealed internal strife and a radical agenda. This weekend, Democrats presented a very different vision for Montana.

The platform “is extremely important because these are our beliefs and our value statements,” Rep. Mary Ann Dunwell, D-Helena, told the Montana Free Press. “We refer to our values ​​statements when working on legislation. When I again introduce a viable payroll for the Montanans, like I did for four different sessions, it’s in our platform.

As with the GOP convention, language is added to the party platform the same way a bill is amended or passed in the Legislative Assembly. Delegates separate into policy-specific board committees — outdoor recreation, health care and housing, for example — and then present the committee-approved amendments to the full convention. (Democrats’ board committees were open to the press; their equivalents at the GOP convention were not.)

Unlike the GOP platform, which, given the party’s near total control over state government, has a real chance of influencing or even becoming state policy, the Democratic platform is primarily ambitious and a statement of opposition to the conservatism that has come to dominate the state. Politics.

Indeed, the majority party has dominated the debates, with several amendments passed in direct response to bills or Republican votes over the past year.

In addition to new language on abortion and an amendment calling for the reinstatement of the Judicial Appointments Commission, convention delegates also passed an amendment calling for legislation to improve health care for veterans. “suffering injuries from toxic exposure during their military service”. Senator Jon Tester, Montana’s only Democrat to hold state or federal office, was a key driver of federal legislation to achieve this. But the PACT Act, as it is known, stalled in the US Senate last week after 25 Republicans, including Montana Sen. Steve Daines, voted against the measure.

And the Dems adopted language supporting local control and the separation of government powers, the latter a response to a high-profile dispute between legislative Republicans and the judiciary last year, as well as an opposing amendment to the “ filling” of local boards — a response to recent political disputes that have consumed local health, school and library boards across the state.

Along the same lines, delegates voted for plank language against censorship in public schools and libraries. “I know there’s a few tips I’d love to wrap up, but I’m in favor of that language,” joked Art Noonan, a longtime Butte Democrat and former party executive director.

Dunwell was responsible for new language calling for a “just and equitable property tax system” that adequately funds government services while protecting “ordinary Montanans from unaffordable tax hikes”.

It’s one of the few areas where Republicans and Democrats in Montana share common ground, though their respective methods for enacting property tax relief differ. The tax board committee spent much of its energy working on the language of the amendment to emphasize that wealthy Montanese and vacation home owners should not receive relief proportionate to Montanese on fixed incomes. or weak — an effort to distinguish the Democratic board from, say, CI-121, the ballot initiative to cap property taxes backed by Republican state auditor Troy Downing, among others. This initiative was not voted on this year.

“It wouldn’t have been based on your income, so it would have affected everyone, even wealthy homeowners who can pay property tax on a half-million-dollar house,” Dunwell told MTFP. , referring to the CI-121.

The convention also approved language calling for increased investment in housing affordability without giving up on environmental or labor regulations.

Underlying several of the amendments was a broad statement of opposition to any partisan effort to repeal or replace the 1972 Montana Constitution, the state’s guiding document and benchmark for Democrats on issues ranging from abortion to access to public lands to judicial appointments. In particular, Republican efforts to restrict or ban abortion in the state would require the reversal of state Supreme Court precedent tying access to the procedure to the Constitution’s broad privacy protections.

“We are the most protected citizens in the United States thanks to our Constitution,” said Evan Barrett, a longtime Butte Democrat and former director of business development under Democratic Gov. Brian Schweitzer.

Hunting, Fishing, and Outdoor Recreation Committee delegates have frequently invoked the Constitution when approving language affirming support for Montana’s waterway access law. .

“I want to see fire. I want to see a fight.

Gallatin County Delegate Alex Newby

“You should ask yourself, do you support public hunting opportunities? Do you support public fishing opportunities? Do you support the outdoor economy and the jobs and businesses it supports? said Jayson O’Neill, a public lands activist and consultant for the Tranel campaign who introduced the language, referring to Republican efforts to boost private hunting. “If you do, you should side with the Democrats.”

One of the weekend’s most substantial debates over election strategy arose during the discussion of the outdoor recreation board.

“To me, it’s a problem that Democrats, if we play our cards right, can turn a lot of voters away from Republicans if we just go out and present the bare facts to the people of Montana,” said Alex Newby, a delegate of Gallatin County attending its first convention.

But Democrats, he argued, have taken support on the issue for granted and are not doing enough to send a direct message to conservative voters who might align themselves with the party on access to public lands.

“The assumption on the part of the Democrats that all types of hook and ball are on our side is not true,” said Art Noonan, who chaired the board committee. “It is divided on other issues – how they hunt, where they hunt, the issue of guns. This is a question where we have to say it again and again and again.

Access to public land isn’t the only issue on which Democrats risk ceding ground to Republicans, Newby later told the MTFP. Democrats, he said, have never campaigned in the conservative farming community where he grew up and struggle to connect their messages with the hearts of voters — a pressing concern given the party’s ambition to win at least one Republican-leaning seat in Congress, avoid a GOP legislative supermajority, and ultimately reclaim at least one seat of statewide power.

“I don’t know what the Montana Democrats are doing other than asking me for money,” he added. “I’m like, I don’t have any money and I don’t want to send you money because I don’t really see a lot of results. So stop praising you for the values ​​you stand for. I want to see some fire. I want to see a fight.

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Letter to the Editor: We must tackle the housing crisis | Letters to the Editor

July 31, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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We must work together to solve Montana’s housing crisis. Affordable housing is increasingly unavailable to the middle class, affecting both rural and urban communities and making it difficult for employers to hire workers, who struggle to find housing.

The reasons for this crisis are manifold: the housing stock has grown more slowly than the population growth of our state; low interest rates encourage second home buyers to compete with assets for homes; the success of companies like AirBNB limits the supply of residential accommodation; and the prevalence of “cash” offers are blocking those in need of mortgage financing. And now more: the loss of many basement apartments at Red Lodge due to flooding.

Governor Greg Gianforte has convened a task force to deal with this crisis, hoping for an answer by October. Yet his actions come after he vetoed House Bill 397, a bipartisan bill that would have provided developers with tax credits to support workforce housing. Hopefully he is now more open-minded to this well-recognized approach, which is supported by state Democrats. In contrast, the Republican Party platform does not even mention affordable housing as an issue.

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Republicans passed a bill in 2021 prohibiting municipalities from requiring developers to include affordable housing in their projects. Again, very harmful to the housing of the workforce.

As a candidate for the Montana House of Representatives, I see a role for the state government in the fight against middle-class housing. I will initiate and support all efforts to resolve this complex issue.

Governor and MDLI chief economist paint rosy economic picture for Montana

July 31, 2022

Montana Economy

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Montana’s economic future looks bright, according to Barb Wagner, chief economist at the Montana Department of Labor and Industry.

Wagner joined Gov. Greg Gianforte at the Montana Chamber of Commerce’s mid-year economic update luncheon in Kalispell to discuss the labor market on July 28. Both offered good news regarding the growth of the state’s economy.

“Last year we had incredible growth,” Wagner said. “In 2021, Montana’s GDP grew 6.7%, which puts us 7th in the nation for GDP growth. In 2021, we added 19,600 jobs at 3.8%. That’s three times faster than our normal growth rate. More jobs in Montana were added in 2021 than any other year we started tracking growth in 1976.”

Among other accomplishments, Gianforte set a goal of creating 10,000 jobs with salaries in excess of $50,000 a year.

“We beat the number by 30% and created 13,000 jobs,” he said.

In the first six months of 2021, 500 new apprentices were added along with 40 new registered apprentice employers.

“We more than doubled the number of apprenticeships in 2021 compared to 2019,” Gianforte said.

Electrician apprenticeship ratios were also changed from two journeyman to one apprentice to one journeyman to two apprentices, quadrupling the number of apprenticeship opportunities.

Gianforte said he is focusing on upgrading infrastructure, expanding broadband, reforming the tax code, removing unnecessary barriers to professional licensing, lowering taxes and strengthening public education systems. and university. To achieve this, it set aside $275 million for broadband expansion and $444 million for critical water and sewer infrastructure.

“We are working with lawmakers to reform, roll back and repeal unnecessary regulations that are a wet blanket for business and make responsible long-term investments in infrastructure because it’s important to grow business and bridge the digital divide” , said Gianforte.

According to Gianforte, Montana is ranked the number one state in which to start a new business.

“We have recovered 146% of the jobs lost since the start of the pandemic. But we still have work to do,” he said. “We will continue to work to make Montana a sanctuary of freedom and free enterprise so Montanans can prosper.”

When the pandemic hit the country, US GDP fell 3.4%. Montana, however, fell only 1.3% and although employment fell 10% during this period due to business closures, Wagner said the state recovered quickly.

“Within 12 months we were back to where we were before,” Wagner said.

Such rapid growth has, however, brought some challenges, including labor shortages and inflation.

“It’s tough on the labor market and the supply chain when the growth is so fast. Even though it’s great, there are negative things,” Wagner said.

In April, Montana’s unemployment rate hit a record low of 2.3% and remains at an all-time low of 2.6%, according to Gianforte. This low unemployment rate, however, means that there are more jobs available than people, which explains the labor shortage. Job openings have also been created by workers who have quit and moved on to potentially higher-paying positions, Wagner said.

“That’s not a bad thing,” she said. “It’s just a hard adjustment to follow.”

Regarding wage gains, Wagner said, “Montana has the 10th fastest growing state over the past year…and has grown 21% over the past two years.” While a quick wage gain can turn into inflation, as higher prices are potentially passed on to consumers, there are other factors to consider. Wagner pointed to federal efforts to mitigate economic shocks from the pandemic as a potential factor.

For example, a study by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco showed that stimulus packages issued during the pandemic resulted in a 3% increase in the rate of inflation.

“Our stimulus packages were significantly larger than in other parts of the world. Right now inflation is 9% and we would be at 6% inflation if our stimulus packages had been the same size than those in other countries,” Wagner said.

Wagner analyzed age and industry trends in the state of Montana, concluding that “every industry has fully recovered and every age group has recovered its labor force participation rate. “.

“We actually have a higher GDP than if we didn’t have a pandemic,” she said.

Slow, steady growth is the ideal outcome for Montana’s economy, and Wagner believes a downturn is ahead.

“We have a really good cushion that we’ve developed over the last year,” she said. “If our economy slows down, I don’t worry about it. Our economy is getting to a pace where we can grow at a good pace, but not at the breakneck pace we were at before the year.

Rents rise as deep-pocketed investors buy mobile home parks

July 30, 2022

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KANSAS CITY (AP) — As far back as anyone can remember, rent increases have rarely happened at Ridgeview Homes, a family-friendly mobile home park in upstate New York.

That changed in 2018 when business owners took over the 65-year-old park located in the middle of farmland and on the road to a fast food restaurant and grocery store about 30 miles northeast of Buffalo.

Residents, about half of whom are seniors or disabled on fixed incomes, bore the first two increases. They hoped the last owner, Cook Properties, would take care of bourbon-colored drinking water, sewage bubbling in their bathtubs and pothole-filled roads.

When that didn’t happen and a new lease with a 6% increase was imposed this year, they formed an association. About half of residents launched a rent strike in May, prompting Cook Properties to send out around 30 eviction notices.

“All they care about is raising the rent because they only care about the money,” said Jeremy Ward, 49, who gets by on just over $1,000 a month on disability benefits after his legs suffered nerve damage in a car accident.

He was recently fined $10 for using a leaf blower. “I am disabled,” he said. “You don’t do your job and I get a violation?”

The fate of Ridgeview residents is being played out nationwide as institutional investors, led by private equity firms and real estate investment trusts and sometimes funded by pension funds, rush to buy up parks of homes mobiles. Critics say mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are fueling the problem by backing a growing number of investor loans.

Shopping puts residents in a bind, as most mobile homes — despite their name — can’t be moved easily or cheaply. Landlords are forced to either accept unaffordable rent increases, spend thousands of dollars to move their home, or abandon it and lose tens of thousands of dollars they have invested.

“These industries, including the mobile home park manufacturing industry, continue to tout these parks, these mobile homes, as affordable housing. But it’s not affordable,” said Benjamin Bellus, Iowa’s assistant attorney general, who said complaints have “upped 100-fold” since out-of-state investors began buying up parks. few years ago.

“You put people in a trap and a trap, where they have no ability to defend themselves,” he added.

Buoyed by some of the strongest returns in real estate, investors have shaken up a once dormant sector that is home to more than 22 million mostly low-income Americans in 43,000 communities. Many aggressively promote parks as guaranteeing a steady return – repeatedly raising rents.

There’s also a growing industry, with how-to books, webinars and even a mobile home university, offering advice on attracting small investors.

“You went from an environment where you had a local owner or manager looking after things because they needed fixing, to where you had people looking at a cost-benefit analysis to figure out how to get the lowest penny,” Bellus said. . “You combine that with the idea that we can just keep raising the rent and these people can’t leave.”

George McCarthy, president and CEO of the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, a Cambridge, Mass.-based think tank, said parks containing about a fifth of the country’s mobile home land had been bought up by investors. institutions over the past eight years.

McCarthy singled out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for guaranteeing the loans as part of what the credit giants see as the expansion of affordable housing. Since 2014, the Lincoln Institute estimates that Freddie Mac alone has provided $9.6 billion in purchase funding for more than 950 communities in 44 states.

A Freddie Mac spokesperson countered that it purchased loans for less than 3% of mobile home communities nationwide, and about 60% of those were refinances.

Shortly after investors began buying up parks in 2015, complaints about double-digit rent increases followed.

In Iowa, Matt Chapman, a resident of a mobile home in a park purchased by Utah-based Havenpark Communities, said his rent and fees have nearly doubled since 2019. Legal Aid’s Alex Kornya of Iowa said another park purchased by Impact Communities saw rent and fees increase 87% between 2017 and 2020.

“A lot of people living in the park had fixed incomes, disabilities, social security and just weren’t going to be able to keep up,” said Kornya, who met about 300 angry mobile home owners in a mega-church. “It almost led to a political awakening.”

In Minnesota, purchases of parks by out-of-state buyers have increased from 46% in 2015 to 81% in 2021, with rent increases of up to 30%, according to All Parks Alliance For Change, an association of parks. ‘State.

US Senator Jon Tester of Montana, speaking at a Senate hearing this year, recalled tenants complaining about repeated rent increases at a Havenpark development in Great Falls. One resident, Cindy Newman, told The Associated Press that her monthly rent and fees rose from $117 to nearly $400 over a year and eight months, the increase of the previous 20 years. The company says the increase was $95 over a three-year period.

In addition to rent increases, residents have complained of being inundated with fees for everything from pets to maintenance and fines for crowding and speeding — all squeezed into leases that can exceed 50 pages.

Josh Weiss, a spokesperson for Havenpark, said the company must charge prevailing market rates when purchasing a park at the fair market price. That said, the company has decided since 2020 to limit its rent increases to $50 per month.

“We understand the anxiety that any rent increase exerts on residents, especially those on fixed incomes,” Weiss said. “While we try to minimize the impact, the financial realities do not change.”

The mobile home industry argues that communities are the most affordable housing option, noting that average rent increases in parks nationwide were just over 4% in 2021. improvement were about 11%. Significant investment is needed, they said, to make improvements to older parks and prevent them from being sold.

“You have people coming into space who are giving us all a bad name, but these are isolated examples and these practices are not common,” said Lesli Gooch, chief executive of the Manufactured Housing Institute, the association industry professional.

Both sides said the government could do more to help.

The industry wants Federal Housing Administration financing to be made available to residents, many of whom rely on high-interest loans to buy homes that cost an average of $81,900. They also want the US Department of Housing and Urban Development to allow the use of housing vouchers for mobile homes.

Resident advocates, including MHAction, want lawmakers to cap rent or require a reason for a raise or eviction — state legislation that succeeded in Delaware this year but failed in Iowa, Colorado and Montana.

They also want Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to stipulate in the loans they support that rents remain affordable. And they’re supporting residents buying their communities, which started in New Hampshire and has grown to nearly 300 parks in 20 states.

A spokesperson for Freddie Mac said it had created a new loan offering that encourages tenant protection and last year made them mandatory for all future transactions in the mobile home community.

In Ridgeview, it is unclear how the rent strike will be resolved.

Cook, which claims to be the largest operator of mobile home parks in New York and has the slogan “Exceptional Opportunities. Exceptional returns,” declined to comment. The company closed a $26 million private equity fund in 2021 that bought 12 parks in New York, but it was unclear if any of them were Ridgeview.

The residents, meanwhile, continue. Joyce Bayles, an 85-year-old resident, has started mowing her own lawn because crews only show up every month. Gerald Korb, a 78-year-old retiree, said he was still waiting for the company to move a utility pole and transformer that he said could fall on his house during a storm.

“I bought a place and now they’re forcing all of this on us,” said Korb, who stopped paying rent in protest. “They are absentee owners, that’s what they are.”

Nevada gets $401 million for rural internet

July 30, 2022

Montana Loans

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LAS VEGAS — The federal government is pledging $401 million in grants and loans to expand the reach and improve internet speeds for rural residents, tribes and businesses in remote areas in 11 states, from Alaska to Arkansas.
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack told reporters on Wednesday, ahead of Thursday’s announcement, that farmers, shop owners, schoolchildren and people wanting telehealth medical exams will benefit from the ReConnect and Telecommunications programs. Infrastructure Loan and Loan Guarantee.
“Connectivity is critical to economic success in rural America,” Vilsack said in a statement tallying the number of people who could be helped at around 31,000 in states also including Nevada, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico and North Dakota. and Texas.
The statement said the Department of Agriculture plans more spending on high-speed internet in the coming weeks as part of a $65 billion Biden administration plan to expand high-speed internet. affordable to all communities in the United States.
U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto, D-Nevada, joined Vilsack and White House infrastructure coordinator Mitch Landrieu in highlighting the effect grants and loans are expected to have in Lovelock, which is home to fewer than 2,000 people, and the Lovelock Indian Colony.
“There’s a need for this connectivity on so many levels,” Cortez Masto said, “that it brings telehealth, telemedicine, e-learning, workforce development. A connection is so important to so many Nevadans.
Internet service provider Uprise LLC will receive more than $27 million to connect nearly 4,900 people, 130 businesses, 22 farms and seven public schools in Lovelock and surrounding Pershing County, officials said.
Cortez Masto, a Democrat seeking re-election in November, said federal funds would provide eligible Nevada residents with $30 a month off their internet bill and up to $100 for a computer.
Elsewhere, Midvale Telephone Co. will receive $10.6 million to bring high-speed fiber-optic internet to people, businesses and farms in four central Idaho counties – Elmore, Blaine, Custer and Boise – and of five southeastern Arizona counties: Gila, Graham, Pinal, Cochise, and Pima.
Arkansas Telephone Co. will receive $12 million to connect nearly 1,000 people, 10 businesses and 145 farms to high-speed Internet in Searcy and Van Buren counties with low-cost starter packages with voice and voice/ data.
Alaska Power & Telephone, Unicom Inc. and Cordova Telephone Cooperative together are expected to receive nearly $55.4 million to connect nearly 3,300 people, 118 businesses and seven schools in remote areas with a fiber optic network.
In New Mexico, Continental Divide Electric Cooperative and ENMP Telephone Cooperative are set to receive combined grants of $18 million to install affordable fiber networks, and Penasco Valley Telephone Cooperative will receive a loan of nearly $29 million to connect ” socially vulnerable communities” in Chaves, Eddy, Lincoln and Otero Counties.
Vilsack said the programs will especially help residents of what he called “persistently poor counties,” where he says most have broadband access but about one in three don’t have the networks to broadband required for telemedicine and distance learning.
He said the aim was “to do what is necessary to ensure that every rural resident, regardless of postcode, has access to reliable and affordable high-speed internet”.

Submarine Force Launches Inaugural Submarine Conference of the Americas > United States Navy > News-Stories

July 29, 2022

Montana Lending

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The inaugural SCOTA was hosted by Western Hemisphere Submarine Leaders (WHEM) from Allied and Partner nations operating submarines to showcase and address national submarine domain capabilities, interoperability challenges and underwater collaboration against strategic competitors in the WHEM.

Vice Admiral William Houston, Commander of the Submarine Forces, kicked off the multinational conference with a word of welcome to participants from Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Peru and the United States

“We are all at this conference together because our countries share the same values ​​of democracy,” Houston said. “Our submarine forces all offer unique capabilities and advantages and this conference will allow us all to take a new step in our partnerships while strengthening our ability to operate as a cohesive joint and combined force that can respond to emerging crises if necessary. “

Following Houston’s introduction, a video of Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro was played for attendees thanking them for their time and cooperation while encouraging them to take advantage of the unique opportunity to build knowledge between building relationships between allies and partnerships.

“I want to thank all of the top leaders in the Western submarine domain who are participating in this important conference today,” Del Toro said. “I believe SCOTA will lay the foundation for a renewed sense of collaboration and threat awareness in the underwater realm, so I urge you to make the most of this gathering and continue to grow our security partnerships. vital.”

After two days of presentations and discussions, Rear Admiral Carlos Alfonso Saz Garcia, Commander of the Peruvian Navy Submarine Forces, left the conference with a deeper understanding of the challenges of interoperability and submarine collaboration. Navy Against Strategic Competitors in the Western Hemisphere (WHEM).

“For us, it is very important to participate in this type of gathering, which is the first Submarine Conference of the Americas, because it seeks to unify collaboration between all submarine forces in the Western Hemisphere,” said Saz Garcia. “We have a lot in common, we sail the same seas and have similar submarines. I sincerely believe that SCOTA will strengthen ongoing partnerships and provide a different submarine take on a common security issue across the Americas.

The conference included presentations from several subject matter experts on global threats in the undersea theater, Navy security, the future of combined warfare in the Western Hemisphere, and lessons in hemispheric security. Admiral Daryl Caudle, Commander of Fleet Force Command, was a subject matter expert, who spoke about the advantages and capabilities of participating nations versus potential adversaries.

“One of our major advantages collectively in this room is the capabilities and superiority of our marines in the underwater realm,” Caudle said. “Our competitors cannot replicate or match the advantages we hold in the underwater environment. We all need to have a thorough understanding of the strengths and capabilities of each of our navies, so that we can better integrate when the time comes.

The conference also included a tour of the Virginia-class fast-attack submarine USS Montana (SSN 794), allowing attendees to see the capabilities of the US Submarine Force in person while providing a chance to pose and share questions and ideas.

The Submarine Force carries out the mission of the Department of the Navy in and from the submarine realm. In addition to giving additional capability to naval forces, the submarine force, in particular, should take advantage of the special advantages that come with submarine concealment to enable operational, deterrent and combat effects that the navy and nation cannot. could not get otherwise.

The submarine force and supporting organizations constitute the main submarine arm of the navy. Submarines and their crews remain the tip of the underwater spear.

Montana adds 2,287 cases, six deaths

July 29, 2022

Montana Economy

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As of Friday morning, Montana confirmed 296,599 positive cases of COVID-19. Montana’s COVID-19 case tracking map shows 2,287 new confirmed cases. There are currently 2,654 active cases in the state.

According to the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services, 1,518,837 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered and 570,384 Montana residents are fully immunized.

In Missoula, 209,818 doses have been administered and 77,695 people are fully immunized. 64% of Missoula’s eligible population is fully immunized, which is the most tied in the state. You can find current case numbers from the City of Missoula Department of Health here.

The number of COVID-19-related deaths in the state rose from 3,467 on July 22, 2022 to 3,473 on July 29, 2022, according to state health officials.

Here are the updated case totals in Montana:

Case of Yellowstone County:
45,806 Total | 332 Newly Reported | 554 Active

Flathead County case:
31,296 Total | 246 Newly Reported | 184 Active

Gallatin County case:
38,035 Total | 246 Newly Reported | 378 Active

Case of Missoula County:
30,647 Total | 238 Newly Reported | 414 Active

Case of Lewis and Clark County:
19,726 Total | 194 Newly Reported | 88 Active

Cascade County Case:
26,962 Total | 172 Newly Reported | 242 Active

Hill County Case:
4,848 Total | 68 Newly Reported | 40 assets

Lake County case:
7,321 Total | 65 newly reported | 54 active

Case of Ravalli County:
7,591 Total | 56 Newly Reported | 74 Active

Blaine County case:
2,251 Total | 45 Newly Reported | 20 assets

Silver Bow County Case:
9,086 Total | 45 Newly Reported | 71 Active

Powell County case:
2,027 Total | 38 Newly Reported | 34 Active

Big Horn County Case:
5,158 Total | 34 Newly Reported | 39 Active

Park County case:
4,744 Total | 34 Newly Reported | 47 Active

Case of Custer County:
3,191 Total | 33 Newly Reported | 49 Active

Case of Rosebud County:
2,775 Total | 32 Newly Reported | 15 active

Lincoln County Case:
5,119 Total | 30 newly reported | 45 active

Case of Glacier County:
4,235 | 27 Newly Reported | 24 active

Madison County case:
2,070 | 27 Newly Reported | 30 assets

Case of Roosevelt County:
3,412 Total | 27 Newly Reported | 29 Active

Valley County case:
1,885 Total | 27 Newly Reported | 42 Active

Case of Deer Lodge County:
2,814 Total | 24 Newly Reported | 12 Active

Case of Dawson County:
2,493 Total | 23 Newly Reported | 26 Active

Jefferson County case:
2,849 Total | 21 Newly Reported | 25 active

Broadwater County case:
1,379 | 17 Newly Reported | 5 Active

Richland County case:
2,755 Total | 16 Newly Reported | 15 active

Carbon County case:
2,216 Total | 14 Newly Reported | 8 Active

Beaverhead County case:
2,290 | 12 Newly Reported | 21 Active

Pondera County Case:
1,302 | 11 Newly Reported | 17 Active

Sanders County Case:
2,264 Total | 11 Newly Reported | 12 Active

Case of Chouteau County:
1,085 | 10 Newly reported | 4 Active

Case of Musselshell County:
966 Total | 10 Newly reported | 14 Active

Case of Teton County:
1,398 Total | 10 Newly reported | 3 Active

Daniels County Case:
414 Total | 9 Newly Reported | 7 Active

Case of Fergus County:
2,621 Total | 8 Newly Reported | 16 Active

Toole County Case:
1,310 | 8 Newly Reported | 10 Active

Granite County Case:
596 Total | 7 Newly Reported | 6 Active

McCone County Case:
404 Full | 7 Newly Reported | 6 Active

Meagher County case:
488 Overall | 7 Newly Reported | 8 Active

Sheridan County case:
779 Total | 7 Newly Reported | 9 Active

Fallon County case:
706 Overall | 6 Newly Reported | 6 Active

Case of the mineral county:
1,215 | 6 Newly Reported | 4 Active

Case of Powder River County:
380 Overall | 5 Newly reported | 4 Active

Stillwater County case:
1,601 Total | 5 Newly reported | 5 Active

Case of Sweet Grass County:
829 Overall | 5 Newly reported | 5 Active

Liberty County case:
441 Overall | 4 Newly Reported | 3 Active

Case of the county of Wibaux:
210 Total | 3 Newly reported | 3 Active

Phillips County case:
1,091 Total | 2 Newly reported | 2 active

Carter County Case:
265 Overall | 1 Newly reported | 1 Active

Case of Judith Basin County:
245 Overall | 1 Newly reported | 2 active

Case of Prairie County:
274 Overall | 1 Newly reported | 3 Active

Garfield County case:
243 Overall | 0 Newly reported | 0 Active

Case of Golden Valley County:
154 Overall | 0 Newly reported | 1 Active

Petroleum County Case:
35 Overall | 0 Newly reported | 0 Active

Case of Treasure County:
139 Overall | 0 Newly reported | 0 Active

Case of Wheatland County:
406 Full | 0 Newly reported | 0 Active

Answers to 25 common questions about the COVID-19 vaccine

Vaccinations against COVID-19 began being administered in the United States on December 14, 2020. The rapid rollout came just over a year after the virus was first identified in November 2019. The impressive speed with which vaccines were developed also left a lot of people with a lot of questions. The questions range from practical – how will I get vaccinated? – to science – how do these vaccines even work?

Keep reading to find answers to 25 common questions about the COVID-19 vaccine.

See striking photos of the tourism industry during COVID-19

Diverse Ranch Quick Sale Large 92,447-acre ranch sold near Rawlins, Wyoming

July 28, 2022

Montana Loans

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North Platte River Ranch Map

The North Platte River Ranch is an attractive investment opportunity for a large scale, low overhead ranch with an excellent lease and tenant in place.

Mason Morse Ranch Company has sold a giant checkerboard block of land located in the Haystack Mountain Range along the North Platte River near Rawlins, Wyoming in Carbon County. The ranch was put up for sale on January 17, 2022 for $11,750,000. The ranch will be in good hands, purchased by a conservation-minded buyer who will continue farming operations on the ranch. James Rinehart and John Stratman, brokers and principal owners of Mason Morse Ranch were the listing agents. Dave Johnson with Hall and Hall represented the Buyer. The ranch closed on July 20, 2022.

North Platte River Ranch’s an extensive land base covered five miles of frontage on the North Platte River, including 700 acres of river bottom, of which about 300 acres were under irrigation producing a yield of 500 to 600 tons of alfalfa per year. The ranch is a well established cow and calf operation with additional opportunities to hunt big game species, deer, elk and antelope. The North Platte River is a source of irrigation and blue ribbon fishing.

In total, the contiguous ranch consists of approximately 25,000 deeded acres as well as 40,960 acres of BLM land, 2,960 acres of public school lease and 23,527 acres of private lease. Improvements included a veterinary calving barn, feedlot, working corrals, two houses, and several support buildings for ongoing livestock operations.

Rawlins, Wyoming is an arid and cool climate. Annual rainfall at the airport is nine inches. This increases at higher ranch elevations. The hottest month of the year is July with an average daily high temperature of 84°. The coldest month is January with a maximum average of 31° and a minimum of 13°. The humidity is quite low. Average annual snowfall is 52 inches. The elevation ranges from 6,400 feet at river level to 7,700 feet at the highest point on the property.

Created in 1868 by the Dakota legislature, the county’s name is derived from the vast coal deposits found in the area. Originally covering the full width of Wyoming Territory, Carbon County was reduced in size by the creation of Johnson County in 1875 and Natrona County in 1888. Historically, it was crossed by the Overland Trail , the Oregon Trail, the Mormon Trail, and both the original Union Pacific Railroad and Lincoln Highway routes. Interstate 80 is now the preferred trail for most travelers through the county, although several minor scenic routes and side roads provide pleasant alternatives.

The Checkerboard Lands are remnants of the early American West when the federal government gave railroad companies alternating sections of land. In 1803, the Louisiana Purchase doubled the size of the expanding United States, and much of what is now Wyoming became an official part of the country. Over the next 100 years, explorers, surveyors, mountaineers, pioneers, Pony Express riders, and farmers traversed the state in search of opportunity.

The Transcontinental Railroad, completed in 1869, left an indelible mark on southern Wyoming. It was funded in part by land grants to the railroad under the Union Pacific Act of 1862. Congress granted all other sections (one square mile) of land within 20 miles of the railroad. iron to Union Pacific, which tried to sell it to raise capital. for the company. The land could then be sold at a profit at a later date. This was impractical in the vast semi-arid rangelands of the West. Many sections in remote areas remained unsold and in government possession, leaving a permanent checkerboard pattern of alternating public and private land.

The North Platte River Ranch is an attractive investment opportunity for a large scale, low overhead ranch with an excellent lease and tenant in place. A combination of ranching and recreation opportunities along the waterfront North Platte River presented an excellent financial opportunity for an investor,” said James Rinehart, listing agent, Mason Morse Ranch Company.


Deed: 25,000 ± acres

BLM: 40,960 ± acres

Private lease: 23,527 ± acres

State lease: 2,960 ± acres

Total: 92,447 ± acres


The BLM permit authorizes approximately AUM 4,320 of grazing on BLM land and an additional AUM 5,000 on deeded land, private leases and state lands. The private lease, which covers approximately 23,527 acres, is from Aggie Grazing. Due to checkerboard ownership, permit holder BLM manages grazing on the Aggie Grazing lease. These lands were former UP Railroad lands. This lease is renewed annually but has been owned by the North Platte River Ranch for many years. The Wyoming State Land Lease comprises 2,960 acres and is intermittent across the property similar to a checkerboard. An additional 700 acres are fenced with the property and currently no lease is being paid for those acres.


The ranch is well known as a cow-calf operation, with an arid climate and natural protection allowing for open calving. Pairs are brought to the northern part of the ranch in early April and remain at the ranch until November. The cows overwinter in the southern part of the North Platte River Ranch. Supplementary feed requirements vary with winter conditions and hay is generally distributed from late December to late April. These requirements are generally 1 to 2 tons per head. Currently, the ranch is in the final year of a five-year lease with a strong tenant, producing a favorable return for the owner.


Many big game species can be found on North Platte River Ranch and include antelope, deer, and elk. Antelopes are generally located throughout the ranch, but are concentrated in the central and western portions of the ranch due to terrain, vegetation, and climate. The rugged terrain of the Haystack Mountains and high ridges create excellent habitat for mule deer. Elk roam throughout the property, with a small resident herd. Transient populations can be found on North Platte River Ranch during fall and winter. The North Platte River runs through the property for five miles, providing aquatic opportunities such as fishing, wading, and rafting. Three and a half miles of river frontage provides a secluded atmosphere with no public roads or public access to the shore and only occasioned by some float traffic. Many species of fish can be found in the North Platte River and include brown trout, rainbow, cutthroat trout and walleye.


Livestock water is provided by electric and solar wells, numerous springs, 30 earthen reservoirs and the North Platte River. Water for the head office and feedlot is supplied by the Sinclair refinery at a very reasonable cost and is of high quality. Currently, livestock water meets the needs of the ranch while it is in operation.


Oil, gas and coal mining rights are believed to be reserved by prior ownership. The region’s wind potential has attracted the attention of wind developers. Although having been approached for development rights by a number of companies, the property remains free of any leases or options. Wind rights will pass to buyer at closing.

About the Mason Morse Ranch Company

One of the leading providers of farmland, ranch and recreation brokerage services in the American West. Professional services include real estate brokerage, auctions and market analysis. With roots dating back to 1961 in the Roaring Fork Valley near Aspen, Colorado, The Ranch Company specializes in helping clients buy and sell high-value farms, ranches and recreational land and large area. Together, the agents of Mason & Morse Ranch Company offer their clients over 133 years of experience in the sale and acquisition of real estate land. 877-207-9700

About Listing Agent James Rinehart

An avid hunter eager to settle in Wyoming, James Rinehart obtained his real estate license in 1991. After more than 27 successful years in the ranch real estate brokerage business, an opportunity presented itself to merge resources with Mason & Morse Ranch Company. The changing dynamics of land brokerage and James’ commitment to providing his experience and effective marketing services to clients were key decision factors in selecting Mason & Morse Ranch Company as a partner. James’ satisfaction as a farm and ranch broker stems from his contribution to improving wildlife habitat and the great outdoors through the sale of quality hunting and fishing properties using conservation practices. Over the years, the opportunities to be involved in conservation ranch brokerage have increased. James has been involved in approximately 75,000 acres of conservation easement-related transactions for buyers and sellers, either through the sale of facilitated ranches, the establishment of post-sale easements, or the permanent securing of land.

James Rinehart

Email: [email protected]

The Web:

Phone: 1-307-459-0035

About Listing Agent John Stratman

Since 1959, John Stratman has lived and worked on ranches in Colorado, Montana and Arizona and owned and operated a ranch in eastern Colorado raising seed stock Red Angus and registered Quarter Horses. Professionally, John spent 18 years in the agricultural investment department of MetLife, where he held various positions from field representative to regional manager. In addition to providing agricultural real estate loans, investment activities included the purchase, management and marketing of large agricultural properties in several western states. During his corporate career, John lived in various western states where he learned about farming and property. Working as a professional real estate broker since 2001, John has bought and sold farms and ranches in many western states and maintains an extensive list of contacts with real estate professionals and landowners across the landscape. vast and varied of the west.

John Stratman

Email: [email protected]

The Web:

Phone: 1-303-536-7571

The “Cowboy code” guides the governors of the West

July 27, 2022

Montana Economy

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HEART OF NAFTA – The first meeting of the Western Governors Association in three years brought together eight heads of state guided by the “cowboy code”.

They finish what they started, said WGA executive director Jim Ogsbury. When something needs to be done, they do it. It’s not what they say, it’s what they do.

Citing the 1934 novel “Code of the West” by Zane Gray, Ogsbury spoke of “unwritten rules centered on hospitality, fair play, loyalty and respect for the land”.

“For an individual, the Governors who join us for the 2022 WGA Annual Meeting this week personify these principles and carry out their responsibilities in accordance with these ageless ethical principles,” Ogsbury said.

The three-day conference which opened at the Coeur d’Alene Resort on Tuesday saw some of the West’s most influential men sit down for talks and presentations on the challenges facing them and their constituents. , including economy, energy, health, cybersecurity, supply chain issues and drought.

“It will be a very productive meeting here in Coeur d’Alene,” Colorado Governor Jared Polis said at a press conference.

Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon said Yellowstone National Park, which recently suffered millions of dollars in historic flood damage, “is open, ready for business and going from strength to strength, and that’s thanks to the excellent neighborly relations that we maintain”.

“Western governors are focused on getting things done and tackling some of the most complex issues facing our country,” he said.

On day one, they heard from Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture, Javier Becerra, Secretary of Health and Human Services, and a five-person panel on the threat of wildfires and the best ways to prevent and fight them. forest fires.

The event hosted by Idaho Governor Brad Little also attracted Governors Doug Ducey (Arizona), David Ige (Hawaii), Greg Gianforte (Montana), Doug Burgum (North Dakota), Spencer Cox (Utah ) and Mark Gordon (Wyoming).

Little said their issues “are somewhat unique, but they’re also somewhat common.”

He said the interdependence of Western states is their “bread and butter”, creating effective partnerships and collaborations to address challenges such as land management, drought and invasive species.

“It’s the chemistry of all of us together and talking about what’s working and what’s not working, what we need to do better and how we need to plan for the future,” Little said.

He said states must leverage their resources to best utilize an aging workforce and address a shortage of affordable housing.

He pointed out that many western states are the fastest growing regions in the country.

“This community you’re in right now may be the fastest growing community in the United States, and we didn’t see it coming,” Little said. “It was a challenge for the state and then a challenge for the local community here. And we hope that some of the solutions to this incredible growth will be discussed here.

The annual meeting continues today with Denis McDonough, Secretary of Veterans Affairs, outlining how states and the federal government can work together to help veterans facing homelessness, mental and behavioral health issues and medical needs. of combat service.

There will also be panel discussions on protecting the supply chain and restoring burned landscapes.

Mountain. Public service urges judges to curb authority of tribal courts

July 26, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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By Andrew Westney (July 26, 2022, 7:15 p.m. EDT) – A Montana electric utility has urged the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a Ninth Circuit ruling that the Crow Tribe Court may sue against the company for disconnecting a tribal member from electrical service, arguing that the situation did not meet an exception to the tribes’ general lack of civil authority over non-Indian entities.

A Ninth Circuit panel ruled in March that the Crow Tribe can subject Big Horn County Electric Cooperative Inc. to tribal regulations and that its court can hear claims under tribal law from senior tribal member Alden. Big Man, about cutting off his electricity during the winter. . The…

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Carroll and Gonzaga Team Up for Accelerated Law Degree | Education

July 25, 2022

Montana Loans

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Law school is tough, but it has become more accessible for Carroll College students who want to pursue a Juris Doctor.

A new initiative between the two private Catholic institutions Carroll College and Gonzaga University was announced Monday at a press conference held in Carroll under blue Montana skies. Carroll partners with the Gonzaga School of Law in Spokane, Washington to offer a 3+3 dual degree program as an accelerated path for students to earn their law degree.

“Carroll College and Gonzaga University attract a similarly ambitious and high-achieving student,” said Carroll College President John Cech. “Through this special partnership, we are creating a pathway for these motivated students to earn a highly valued law degree in less time and at a lower cost. We look forward to doing what we can to ease the financial burden facing students as they prepare to enter and add value to our regional workforce.

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Cech emphasized that the goal of the program is to create pathways and opportunities for Montana residents.

The idea first surfaced in the fall of 2021, when Gov. Greg Gianforte called Cech on a Monday night. The governor told Cech that government cannot function without lawyers and that Carroll has a unique opportunity as it is the only four-year college in the state capital.

The next day, Cech contacted Gonzaga president Thayne McCulloh. From there, the two institutions worked together to develop the 3+3 dual degree program which has now borne fruit.

“I just planted the seed and (Cech and McCulloh) ran with it,” Gianforte said.

Students can attend Carroll for three years and, at the end of their freshman year and upon successful application, enroll in Gonzaga Law School. Credits earned in their first year of law school will be transferred to complete undergraduate requirements, allowing students to complete their bachelor’s degree while studying law.

“I think (the 3+3 program with Gonzaga) is an exceptional opportunity. Many students went to law school from our (political science) department,” said Jeremy Johnson, director of political science at Carroll. “Over the past 10 years, everyone who has applied to our department at Carroll has entered law school, and Gonzaga is a popular regional law school.”

Carroll College President John Cech speaks at a Monday press conference announcing a partnership with the Gonzaga School of Law in Spokane, Wash., to offer a 3+3 dual degree program as a fast-track for college students. students graduate in law.

THOM BRIDGE, Independent Disc

The 3+3 program will allow Carroll students to complete both a bachelor’s degree and a JD in six years instead of the traditional seven-year cycle. This will save time and tuition costs while reducing student loans and increasing earning potential by joining the workforce sooner.

“We are very pleased to partner with Carroll College to provide students with an accelerated opportunity to earn both a Carroll undergraduate degree and a Gonzaga University law degree,” said McCulloh. “Gonzaga is proud of his many connections to Montana alumni, students and friends. We are grateful to our colleagues at Carroll College for this partnership and look forward to welcoming our first Carroll College cohort to campus in the fall of 2023.”

Carroll and Gonzaga are working to expand other aspects of this partnership, including the growth of Carroll’s pre-law program, the internship partnership and other collaborative efforts to be announced next year.

This is not Carroll’s first 3+3 dual degree program. In August 2019, Carroll announced its partnership with the University of Montana’s Alexander Blewett III School of Law, which was the first public-private partnership for the two institutions.

“I didn’t know (3+3 dual degree law programs) was a thing because my class at Carroll was first eligible. I found it on Carroll’s website my freshman year,’ said Rylie Weeks, a 2022 Carroll English graduate and a member of the Talking Saints (Carroll’s speech and debate team) who will be attending the dual-rights program. 3 + 3 degree from UM in the fall. “It was definitely more work because you have to complete your major and major requirements, but if you know you want to go to law school, then I would.”

The 3+3 Dual Degree program with Gonzaga will be available to newly admitted and qualified current Carroll students beginning in Fall 2022.

“Everyone wins when we provide students with the tools they need to succeed and thrive, which is why increasing educational opportunities is one of our primary goals,” Gianforte said. “Together with Dr. Cech, we are increasing access to legal internships in state government, giving students in the new Carroll College-Gonzaga University accelerated law degree program the opportunity to learn, train and start their career in Montana.”

Gianforte ended the press conference on a high note.

“Together, we’re looking for out-of-the-box solutions to help Montana residents thrive and reach their full potential. I am filled with optimism about what we can accomplish with this partnership,” said Gianforte. “Montana’s best days are ahead of us.”

Can you legally share how much you get paid with your colleagues?

July 25, 2022

Montana Lending

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Over the years, regardless of my job, I’ve always felt like it’s taboo to talk about how much you get paid. Whether it’s your family, friends, or colleagues, the feeling is that you’re not supposed to tell anyone about it. It’s meant to be kept as a deep, dark secret that only you know.

But why? Is there really an unspoken rule that says it’s rude to discuss your salary with someone? Can you really get in trouble for talking about salary? Or have we all been manipulated by companies and their bosses and managers into thinking that our salary is a forbidden topic of conversation?

Can you get in trouble and even get fired from your job if you talk about your salary?

Does your employer have the right to punish or fire you for discussing how much the company is paying you?

The answer? NOPE.

According to National Labor Relations Commission, workers in Indiana, Kentucky and Illinois are protected. The same is true for all workers in the country.

… When you and another employee have a conversation or communication about your salary, it is illegal for your employer to punish or retaliate against you in any way for having that conversation.

Sharing your salary can help you in the future and others

Sharktank’s most ruthless and demanding businessman even says that we should share our salary information.

In my opinion, I think we should be very open about the amount we receive. Many times when I was asked what I wanted to do, I had no idea. Was I going to ask too much and be ignored, or God forbid, too little and be stuck being paid far less than I should be?

Most of the time I ended up selling myself short and getting paid much less than everyone else doing the same job. If we were all more comfortable discussing how much we paid, I would have had an idea of ​​what other people were earning and reasonably asked for more money upfront.

It’s confusing, so that might help.

Although workers can legally discuss their wages with co-workers, says this,

Although the NLRA prohibits employers from preventing discussions of wages and working conditions, the provision is vague and the practice is common. Last year, in a national survey conducted by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, half of adults said discussions about pay were either prohibited or discouraged in their workplaces.

If you are an employer, get me the details of what you can and cannot do, legally, regarding your employees by discussing how much you pay them, benefits, bonuses, incentives, terms and conditions work, etc.,

“> HERE.

WATCH: Here are 25 ways to start saving money today

Whether it’s finding discounts or simple changes to your daily habits, these money-saving tips can come in handy whether you have a specific savings goal, want to save money, money for retirement or just want to earn a few pennies. It’s never too late to be more financially savvy. Read on to learn more about how you can start saving now. [From: 25 ways you could be saving money today]

KEEP READING: See the Richest Person in Every State

WATCH: These are the 50 largest retailers in America

How the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 is hurting blue states

July 25, 2022

Montana Economy

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The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (TCJA) has been touted as a way to reduce the tax burden on the American people and increase the productivity of the American economy. At the heart of the TCJA was the cap on exemptions for the deduction of interest paid on real estate mortgages and the deduction of state income taxes from an individual’s federal income tax. The passage of the TCJA has hurt school funding for so-called blue states since blue states have traditionally had a higher tax rate to support their K1 through K12 school systems. The TCJA hasn’t hurt red states as much since many red states have Sovereign Wealth Wealth Funds (SWFs) that typically fund K1 through K12 school systems and therefore don’t need the additional income of an income tax of the state to fund their education systems.

The TCJA ignored the fact that not all investment income from SWFs is taxable income. The Republican Party designed the TCJA to restrict educational benefits in typically Democratic states, economically punish blue states for their economic choices, and reduce the ability of blue states to fund adequate education for their children. By maintaining tax-exempt status on the investment income of state sovereign wealth funds, the Republican Party has maintained the ability of predominantly Republican states to continue funding their children’s education, rather than promoting economic security. of the American people as a whole.

There are 21 sovereign wealth funds

At the level of the associated States of the Union

While there are 21 sovereign wealth funds at the level of the associated states of the Union, only 20 states have sovereign wealth funds, Texas having two funds.

The first sovereign wealth funds began with the Land Ordinance of 1785 and the Northwest Ordinance of 1787. The Ordinance of 1875 provided that the western lands were to be surveyed and divided into townships of seven square miles, then divided into 36 sections. For each township, the central lot, described as lot number 16 for each township, should be reserved for the maintenance of public schools in each township.

The Northwest Ordinance was a more formal mechanism by which states could seek entry as an associated state into the Union. Each territory applying for statehood should have an enabling law that would define the specific land grant for maintaining a public school system. These early attempts to set up a public school system did not provide for a legal trust fund, for the maintenance and investment of any income derived from these plots of land. The incoming states also had considerable leeway in deciding what to do with these specific land grants and how to manage them.

Many states immediately sold these plots of land to raise funds for the establishment of the public school system in the new state. It will be necessary to wait until 1835 for the territory of Michigan to establish the first permanent fund. Other states entering the Union followed Michigan’s example, but it was not until 1875 that the federal government specifically explained to territories entering the Union how they should use land for agricultural purposes. public education.

Severance tax funds began to appear in the 1930s when the state of New Mexico began using the concept of taxing the extraction of mineral wealth from state public lands. On March 1, 1937, the state of New Mexico began imposing a severance tax on mineral wealth extracted from state lands. In 2018, New Mexico had a valuation of $23 billion. 75% of the investment income from this fund is allocated to New Mexico’s education system, and the remaining 25% is used for other state obligations.

Many oil companies felt that the departure tax was unconstitutional and began a series of lawsuits. In 1981, the United States Supreme Court ruled in Commonwealth Edison v. Montana that the state of Montana had the right to impose such a tax on oil companies.

States that have a sovereign wealth fund for educational purposes and to offset costs to the state government are listed here:

State Main source of income Date of creation Valuation 10/21* Earnings*

Colorado Oil, coal and gas 1876 $1.321 billion $130 million

Alaska Oil 1976 $79.4 billion $16.1 billion

Alabama Oil and Gas 1985 $3.67 billion $900 million

Idaho Lumber Sales 1890 $3.16 billion $197.0 million

Louisiana Minerals 1986 $6.5 billion Unknown

Minnesota Land 1858 $1.5 billion Unknown

Mississippi Lumber, oil, gas, etc. 1817 $60 million $14.4 million

Montana Oil, Investment, XXXXXX $62 million NA

Pasture, agricultural 1889

Nebraska Ag leases 1867 NA$536 million

Nevada Land Sales, Unclaimed Estates, and Criminal Laws and Fines

XXXXXX XXXXXXXXXX 1917 $365 million $15.8 million

New Mexico Oil and Gas 1958 $34 billion $2.2 billion

North Dakota Oil and Gas 2011 $8.24 billion $564 million

Oklahoma Oil, gas and investments 1906 $1.8 billion Unknown

Oregon Investments 1859 $1.6 billion $149 million

South Dakota Oil, gas and leases 1889 $18.4 billion $2.7 billion

Texas SF Oil and Gas 1854 $58.5 billion $8.6 billion

Texas UF Oil and Gas 1876 $31.9 billion Unknown

Utah Oil and Gas 1896 $2.5 billion $82 million

Washington Wood 1894 $1.1 billion $101.5 million

Wisconsin Unclaimed and XXXXX XXXXXXXXX

Dormant property 1848 $31 million NA

Wyoming Oil and Gas 1974 $7.9 billion $301 million

(* Figures given in this article are based on the best information available to the public. Several of the SWFs are so opaque that it was impossible to provide income even after contacting the SWFs directly. ‘a sovereign wealth fund has not been found, the information used is taken from the article: North American Dream: The Rise of US and Canadian Sovereign Wealth by Dr. Paul Rose published on May 6, 2014 at Moritz College of Law in Ohio State University)

National sovereign wealth funds

And investment income is not taxable

For decades, the so-called red states have campaigned against allowing wealthier blue states to be able to deduct their income taxes and home interest payments from their federal income tax. With the passage of the TCJA, these deductions were removed and a single cap of $10,000 was imposed primarily on blue states. The TCJA did not take into consideration the tax-exempt status of sovereign wealth funds in the United States, nor the profits of sovereign wealth funds, thus making this wealth invisible to the federal government.

When the federal government decides to allocate funds to the associated states of the Union, the main factor in this decision-making is based on need.


The elements included in the formulas vary widely among currently active programs. Most programs use one or more of the following:

A direct or indirect measure of need, such as the number of school-aged children living in poverty, the number of overcrowded housing units in an area, or the number of reported AIDS cases.

A measure of an area’s ability or capacity to meet need

state, local or private funds. Typical measures used are per capita income and total taxable resources.

A threshold, which requires a minimum level of need before an area is eligible for funds under the program. In some programs, thresholds are used to target resources to areas of greatest need.

A minimum amount to be received by each state or other jurisdiction.

A disclaimer, which limits decreases in amounts received by areas from one period (usually one fiscal year) to the next.

The inclusion of such particularities sometimes requires the use of relatively complicated iterative procedures to determine the allocation of a fixed total allocation to eligible jurisdictions.

Because the accumulated wealth of sovereign wealth funds is invisible to the federal government when it distributes tax revenues among the associated states, current tax policies punish high-tax states and reward high-tax states. weak. This means that the majority of redistributed federal tax goes from blue states to red states.

Republican states, through their actions in freeing up their sovereign wealth funds and income taxes, and at the same time accessing state treasuries that are needed to provide a good education to their people, are able to have their cake and eat it too.

HDFC Securities Says to BUY These 3 Stocks Next Week, Posts Strong Q1 Results

July 24, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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Following Q1FY23 results, brokerage firm HDFC Securities is bullish on shares of UltraTech Cement, Bandhan Bank and Mphasis. The brokerage has set a target price of INR 7,295 for UltraTech Cement, implying a potential upside of 13% from the current market price. The brokerage has set a target price of INR 396 for Bandhan Bank, indicating a potential upside of 38% from the current market price. And HDFC Securities has set a target price of INR 2,940 for Mphasis shares, representing a potential gain of 29% from the current price.

UltraTech Cement

The brokerage said that “UTCEM’s consolidated EBITDA in Q1FY23 came in around 10/15% ahead of ours/consensus numbers. Due to high fuel prices, UTCEM’s consolidated EBITDA/APAT in Q1FY23 fell 6/7% YoY (despite revenue growth of 28%).While EBITDA per unit fell 20% YoY, it rebounded 11% YoQ to reach a healthy level of INR 1,236/MT UTCEM has warned that its fuel cost has not yet peaked, it will add capacity of around 40 million metric tons during fiscal years 23-25E, increasing its gray capacity to 154 million metric tons by the end of FY25. It also plans to double its share of green power to 36% in FY25 from 18% currently.”

“The UTCEM-guided exit price on June 22 is down about 3-5% from Q1FY23 due to the onset of the monsoon. It expects its energy cost to continue to decline. quarter-to-quarter for 2-3 quarters UTCEM will spend ~INT 60 billion in Capex in FY23E, which also includes Phase 2 Capex. 16.7 million metric tons by the end of FY23 and approximately 23 million additional metric tons (North, Central, East and South by the end of FY23) 25e) Targets gray capacity of 154m MT by FY25 UTCEM is also aggressively expanding its green power capacities with a target of around 36% share by FY25 (Q1FY23 – 19%) We maintain our estimates for the 23/24 financial year as well as the target price of the stock,” said HDFC Securities.

“We are maintaining BUY on UltraTech (UTCEM) with an unchanged target price of INR 7,295 (16x Consolidated EBITDA Mar’24E). We continue to like the company for its strong growth, margin outlook and balance sheet management,” the brokerage said.

Bandhan Bank

HDFC Securities said in a note that “Despite a strong rebound in advances (+20% YoY), Bandhan reported a failure of around 14% due to soft NIMs (8%) and lower other income (-66% YoY) Incremental growth was driven by non-EEB business, in line with the bank’s strategy to drive portfolio diversification (FY25 targeted the group’s EEB share in the portfolio at 26%. Gross slippages were high (~5.4%), driven by the EEB portfolio due to Assam floods/restructuring, resulting in a QoQ increase of 79 bps in GNPA. We remain attentive to asset quality and the impact of a shift in portfolio composition on the bank’s stable return metrics We are reducing our FY23E /FY24E estimates to account for lower other income and higher credit costs Maintain BUY with price c revised ible of INR 396 (2.7x Mar-24 ABVPS).”

“The bank’s strategy of foraying into other retail and commercial banking businesses is on track. While we appreciate the need to diversify the loan portfolio for greater franchise stability, we believe this could set a new standard for steady-state performance metrics. We are monitoring redemption trends arising from the restructured portfolio to gain additional confidence in asset quality,” the brokerage added.


“Mphasis (MPHL IN) reported lower online revenue and margin in the first quarter. Growth in direct international business (+2.4% T/T CC) was impacted by the weakness of the mortgage credit division. MPHL’s growth outlook remains strong, based on (1) healthy deal volume (USD 302m net new TCV in Q1FY23, up 18% YoY, ex-large deal of 250 million USD won in Q1FY22); (2) trending deal pipeline (up 6% quarter-on-quarter and 10% year-on-year); (3) a lower revenue contribution from the DXC business (

“We expect weakness in the (short-term) mortgage segment and weakness in DXC to have a combined impact of 250 basis points on FY23 growth. UK may have some impact, winning a cloud transformation contract over $60m TCV and onshore pricing is offset Operating margin levers include onshore pricing and improved utilization Maintain BUY with a TP of INR 2,940, valuing MPHL at 28x FY24E EPS, backed by the industry’s best large client mining engine, consistency in large contracts won and stable operating metrics,” the brokerage said.

“We factored in +14.3/13.1% revenue growth, based on direct business growth at +17.2/14.5% and DXC channel growth at -24. .1/-13.1% for FY23/24E respectively; Additionally, we considered an EBITM of 15.2/15.5% for FY23/24E, which translates to an EPS CAGR of 16% on FY22-24E,” HDFC Securities shared as a prospect for the stock.

The opinions and recommendations made above are those of individual analysts or brokerage firms, and not of Mint.

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Inland Bank’s Relationship-Driven Financial Advisor Lending Program Supports Transition and Growth

July 24, 2022

Montana Loans

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Launched in 2018, the Inland Bank Financial Advisor Loan Program was created to help independent financial advisors grow their business and clientele through the acquisition of another financial advisor’s portfolio of business, through partner takeovers or debt refinancing.

The program serves financial advisors across the country, offering conventional loans at a significantly lower rate than the SBA 7(a) loan program along with flexible structures and favorable pricing and terms.

Program features and terms include no cash equity required from the buyer, competitive fixed interest rates and up to 10 years of amortization.

When the program started – and still today – there was a growing demand for financial advisor loans as the number of retired financial advisors increased. By listening to financial advisory clients and providing personalized solutions, Inland Bank has built a foundation of ongoing, long-term support to assist with funding as a financial advisor’s practice grows.

As many financial advisors decide to retire later in life, many choose to sell parts of their business in separate transactions. This allows the retiring advisor to remain active in a lesser capacity, while capitalizing on a segment of the business they have built.

These portfolios are often established after years of personal relationships. Therefore, selling the business to a new advisor is more than just a transaction. It creates a relationship between the advisors as well as with Inland Bank as the lender.

As a community bank, it is an added advantage to offer customers in this niche industry personalized service and support to help with the transition and growth of their business.

Since its inception, the Inland Bank Financial Advisor Loan Program has funded nearly $20 million in loans to financial advisors located in Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri , Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and Wisconsin.

For more information about the Financial Advisor Loan Program, contact Tiffany Tyson at [email protected] or (630) 908-6623.

Keystone Pipeline won’t make gas cheaper – The Journal

July 23, 2022

Montana Economy

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Ever since boycotts began blocking Russian petroleum products, social media has been teeming with memes attributing rising gas prices to “the cancellation of the Keystone pipeline.”

Example: “Oh! Ask a buddy.

Most criticism comes from people who recycle truthfulness. Former Vice President Mike Pence: “Gas prices have gone up nationwide because of this administration’s war on energy – the shutdown of the Keystone pipeline.” Republican Rep. Jim Jordan: “Biden shut down the Keystone pipeline.

Here’s what really happened: No one shut down, canceled, or closed the Keystone pipeline. It is fully operational and delivering 590,000 barrels of tar sands oil daily in Canada to US refineries.

What some pipeline proponents think is that the “Keystone Pipeline” is a 1,700 mile “shortcut” called Keystone XL or KXL. It would have traveled through Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas and Oklahoma to the Gulf Coast of Texas, delivering 830,000 barrels of tar sands oil per day. Many residents of these states fought fiercely against the pipeline that ran through their territory.

Now, “Build the Keystone Pipeline” has become a social media mantra, as if the United States could decree it. Canadian company TC Energy, formerly TransCanada, officially ended the project after President Biden withdrew his permits.

Even if construction of the pipeline began tomorrow, KXL could not be operational in less than five years.

When President Trump reauthorized KXL in 2017, his own State Department indicated that he would not reduce gasoline prices. The price of oil is set by the world market and certainly not by American presidents.

Let’s not forget either that the extraction of gasoline from tar sands oil, the dirtiest oil on the planet, is much more polluting and energy-intensive than conventional refining. Some of the carbon content is burned off in a process that spews greenhouse gases and generates toxic waste called petroleum coke, which is dumped in the United States in heaps six stories high. Petroleum coke seeps into schools and homes even when the windows are closed.

Bitumen, essentially asphalt, continues to be surface mined from what were once Canada’s boreal forests in Alberta. Too thick to pipe, it is enriched with volatile liquid natural gas condensate and thus converted into a toxic oil sands cocktail called “dilbit”, short for diluted bitumen. The dilbit, sent through the existing Keystone pipeline, contains chloride salts, sulfur, abrasive minerals and acids, and must be pumped under high pressure. It’s a murder on pipes.

In addition to greenhouse gases and petroleum coke, oil sands waste includes lakes, rivers, fish, wildlife and humans. Between 1995 and 2006, as oil sands extraction accelerated, First Nations in Alberta experienced a sudden 30% increase in cancer rates.

KXL, if built, also threatened the largest aquifer in the world – the Ogallala. Parts of the aquifer are now depleted and a major dilbit spill could complete those parts.

In 2011, a pipeline representative named Shawn Howard assured me that driving a dilbit pipe into the Ogallala aquifer would be risk-free.

“Why,” he asked, “would we invest $13 billion in a pipeline and put a product in it that was going to destroy it like these activists trot out? It makes absolutely no business sense.

The existing Keystone pipeline has ruptured 22 times, including spills in 2017 and 2019 that polluted land and water with 404,000 gallons of dilbit. Business acumen, as the oil industry constantly reminds us, is an attribute more often desired than possessed.

Ted Williams is a contributor to Writers on the Range, a nonprofit dedicated to stimulating conversation about the West. He writes about fish, wildlife and the environment.

Head-to-head record: Eagle Bancorp Montana (NASDAQ:EBMT) vs. Renasant (NASDAQ:RNST)

July 23, 2022

Montana Lending

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Eagle Bancorp Montana (NASDAQ: EBMTGet a rating) and Renasant (NASDAQ:RNSTGet a rating) are both small cap finance companies, but which is the better company? We’ll compare the two companies based on their dividend strength, analyst recommendations, risk, valuation, profitability, institutional ownership and earnings.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of the current ratings of Eagle Bancorp Montana and Renasant, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sales Ratings Hold odds Buy reviews Strong buy odds Rating
Eagle Bancorp Montana 0 1 0 0 2.00
Renasant 0 1 2 0 2.67

Eagle Bancorp Montana currently has a consensus target price of $22.00, indicating a potential upside of 12.76%. Renasant has a consensus target price of $34.63, indicating a potential upside of 12.09%. Given Eagle Bancorp Montana’s likely higher upside, stock analysts clearly believe that Eagle Bancorp Montana is more favorable than Renasant.

Volatility and risk

Eagle Bancorp Montana has a beta of 0.64, indicating its stock price is 36% less volatile than the S&P 500. By comparison, Renasant has a beta of 1.09, indicating its stock price is 9% more volatile than the S&P 500.


Eagle Bancorp Montana pays an annual dividend of $0.50 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.6%. Renasant pays an annual dividend of $0.88 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.8%. Eagle Bancorp Montana pays 29.4% of its earnings as a dividend. Renasant distributes 32.7% of its profits as a dividend. Both companies have healthy payout ratios and should be able to cover their dividend payments with earnings over the next few years. Eagle Bancorp Montana has increased its dividend for 11 consecutive years.


This table compares the net margins, return on equity and return on assets of Eagle Bancorp Montana and Renasant.

Net margins Return on equity return on assets
Eagle Bancorp Montana 12.04% 7.52% 0.80%
Renasant 23.66% 7.01% 0.93%

Insider and Institutional Ownership

46.9% of Eagle Bancorp Montana shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 78.7% of Renasant shares are held by institutional investors. 7.4% of the shares of Eagle Bancorp Montana are held by insiders of the company. By comparison, 2.9% of Renasant shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large fund managers, and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Valuation and benefits

This chart compares gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS), and valuation of Eagle Bancorp Montana and Renasant.

Gross revenue Price/sales ratio Net revenue Earnings per share Price/earnings ratio
Eagle Bancorp Montana $97.52 million 1.34 $14.42 million $1.70 11:48
Renasant $695.67 million 2.48 $175.89 million $2.69 11:48

Renasant has higher revenues and profits than Eagle Bancorp Montana. Eagle Bancorp Montana trades at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Renasant, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.


Renasant beats Eagle Bancorp Montana on 12 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Eagle Bancorp Montana

(Get a rating)

Eagle Bancorp Montana, Inc. operates as a bank holding company for Opportunity Bank of Montana, which provides various retail banking products and services to small businesses and individuals in Montana. It accepts various deposit products, such as individual checking, savings, money market and retirement accounts, as well as certificates of deposit accounts. The Company also offers 1 to 4 family residential mortgages, such as residential mortgages and building residential properties; commercial real estate loans, including multi-family housing, non-residential property, commercial construction and development, and farmland loans; and second mortgage/home equity loans. In addition, it offers consumer loans, such as loans secured by collateral other than real estate, such as automobiles, recreational vehicles and boats; personal loans and lines of credit; commercial business loans consisting of secured and unsecured business loans and lines of credit; building loans; agricultural loans; and mortgage lending services. The company operates 23 full-service branches, 1 community banking office and 25 ATMs. Eagle Bancorp Montana, Inc. was founded in 1922 and is headquartered in Helena, Montana.

About Renasant

(Get a rating)

Renasant LogoRenasant Corporation operates as a bank holding company for Renasant Bank which provides a range of financial, wealth management, trust and insurance services to retail and commercial customers. It operates through three segments: community banks, insurance and wealth management. The community banking segment offers checking and savings accounts, business and personal loans, asset lending and equipment rental services, as well as safe deposit and night deposit services . It also grants commercial, financial and agricultural loans; financing and leasing of equipment; real estate-1-4 family mortgage; real estate-commercial mortgage; real estate construction loans for the construction of single-family residential properties, multi-family properties and commercial projects; personal installment loans; and interim construction loans, as well as automated teller machines (ATMs), online and mobile banking, call centers and cash management services. The Insurance segment provides insurance agency services, such as commercial and personal insurance products through insurance companies. The Wealth Management segment offers a range of wealth management and trust services, including the administration and management of trust accounts, such as personal and corporate benefit accounts, and custodial accounts, as well as accounting and fund management for trust accounts; annuities, mutual funds and other investment services through a third party broker; and qualified retirement plans, IRAs, employee benefit plans, personal trusts and estates. As of December 31, 2021, the company operated a network of 189 banking, credit and mortgage offices located in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee; 150 full-service branches and 11 limited-service branches; 173 ATMs; and 38 ATMs. Renasant Corporation was founded in 1904 and is headquartered in Tupelo, Mississippi.

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Author exposes Clarkdale’s ‘sinister’ history

July 22, 2022

Montana Mortgages

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Local author Peggy Hicks really loves her job.

While reading her latest book, “Bootleggers, Bottles & Badges: The More Sinister Side of the So-called “Model Town” of Clarkdale Arizona,” Hicks brought her stories to life using a trunk full of props : authentic antique bottles, newspaper clippings, a pistol and an old spittoon, which she literally threw from the stage, intentionally during her performance at Stardust Books on Saturday July 16th.

For about an hour, Hicks told stories — some true, some folk — about the history of Clarkdale and the colorful cast of characters who lived during the Prohibition era from around 1915 to 1930.

While wearing multiple hats, a veil, and even the classic disguise of nose and glasses, Hicks transformed, becoming the characters in the book, including town founder William A. Clark.

While wearing a top hat, Hicks exposed Clark’s more “sinister” side, including a “dishonest” campaign to become a senator in 1899.

“It has been reported that he bribed his constituents with $1,000 bills, spending over $430,000 to become a senator from Montana,” she said. “When Clark was confronted for his corruption, he said, ‘I never bought a man that wasn’t for sale. “”

According to, “The Senate referred the matter to the Committee on Privileges and Elections, which promptly requested and received permission to conduct a full investigation into Clark’s election. On April 23, 1900, after hearing extensive testimony from 96 witnesses, the committee issued a report concluding unanimously that William Clark was not entitled to his seat. The testimony detailed a dazzling list of kickbacks ranging from $240 to $100,000. In a high-pressure, well-organized scheme coordinated by Clark’s son, Clark’s agents had paid mortgages, bought ranches, paid debts, funded banks, and blatantly presented envelopes of cash to lawmakers.

State legislatures elected senators before the 17th Amendment, had them directly elected by voters in 1913.

Although he resigned before the Senate committee could reject him from his seat, Clark eventually became a senator anyway, after the acting governor of Montana nominated him to fill a vacant seat.

The following year he was elected to the Senate by “a newly elected Montana legislature – in which most of the winning candidates had received financial support from [Clark].”

“Clark was a dealer, a miner, and a millionaire at the age of 30,” Hicks said. “In 1910 he began to purchase property at the base of Mingus Mountain, where he would build a foundry. Then he built a railroad along the Verde River, where he used the train to transport copper to market.

Hicks told stories of the city’s booming business and the growth fueled by the mines, which emitted smoke and toxic fumes and killed vegetation in surrounding areas.

Hicks said that while most mining towns of the day grew haphazardly out of control, Clark’s vision for the town of Clarkdale was different, and it became Arizona’s first masterplan town.

Hicks’ interest in history led her to write a total of four books, including “Bootleggers.” His other three books include “Ghost Town Stories and Wicked Legends, Are Ghosts Real?” “The Story of Belgian Jennie: The Richest Woman in Arizona Territory” and “The Ghost of Cuban Queen Bordello: The Story of a 1920s Woman Jerome”.

After operating his retail store in Jerome for 25 years, Hicks moved to Clarkdale.

“I lived in Clarkdale for 30 years,” she said. “Clarkdale was supposed to be the model town so I didn’t think there would be much history, until I started looking in the archives and doing some research, and after finding antique bottles of drugs, alcohol and more, I started wondering what they were used for and who sold them and it all kind of came together.

Hicks’ bottle collection includes old liquor and milk bottles, “snake oil” drugs and others, which she says she acquired from various junkyards around town.

“I’ve been digging for bottles for years,” she says. “I used to live in Colorado and go to Telluride and stuff like that. To me, it’s amazing how they worked; they used molds, the first bottles were blown glass.

Throughout his reading, Hicks used the bottles as props to tell stories of old pharmacies, bootlegging operations and more.

“I’ve always loved history,” she says. “My grandmother was a storyteller and I learned to love [storytelling] of her.”

Hicks said she sells her books locally, at Jerome and the Verde Canyon Railroad in Clarkdale, but most of her sales are online through Amazon, where she has self-published her works.

Fintech Legal Report – July 2022 | Coie Perkins

July 22, 2022

Montana Lending

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[co-author: Dania Assas]

Weekly Fintech focus

  • The CFPB is terminating a no-action letter with an AI credit underwriter.
  • A CFPB circular confirms that IA’s underwriting models are subject to anti-discrimination laws, including adverse action notices.
  • BNPL companies and credit bureaus are urged by the CFPB to properly report consumer information.
  • The CFPB is launching an initiative to improve customer service at major banks.

CFPB Terminates AI Credit Underwriting No Action Letter

On June 8, 2022, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a order ending a No Action Letter (NAL) that the CFPB originally granted to lending platform Upstart Network, Inc. (Upstart), in 2017 (CFPB’s first-ever NAL) and subsequently renewed in November 2020 for a period of three years.

Under the CFPB’s NAL policy, a person may seek treatment without action on a new product or service that offers the potential for significant consumer benefits where there is uncertainty as to how the CFPB would apply provisions specific to the law. Granting treatment without action means that the CFPB does not currently intend to take supervisory or enforcement action against the recipient with respect to the subject matter of the NAL.

The CFPB’s termination of Upstart NAL is the latest in a series of CFPB actions that have raised questions about the future of its NAL policy. The following timeline briefly summarizes these events:

  • In 2017, Upstart requested an NAL from the CFPB to clarify that Upstart’s credit underwriting model, which involved proprietary applications of artificial intelligence and machine learning to complement traditional credit scoring methodologies, did not present a violation of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) and Regulation B. The CFPB granted Upstart’s request, making Upstart the first entity to receive no-action treatment under the new policy NAL of the CFPB.
  • On November 30, 2020, the CFPB renewed NAL from Upstart for another three years. The NAL terms and conditions required Upstart to notify the CFPB of material changes to Upstart’s model.
  • On April 13, 2022, Upstart notified the CFPB of its intention to add new variables to its underwriting and pricing model. According to the CFPB’s June 8 termination order, CFPB staff requested more time to review Upstart’s proposal.
  • On May 24, 2022, the CFPB announcement that it was replacing its Office of Innovation (which handled NAL applications) and its Project Catalyst (another initiative to encourage innovation) with a new Office of Competition and Innovation. The CFPB press release states that “[a]fter a review of these programs, the agency concludes that the initiatives have proven ineffective and that some firms participating in these programs have made public statements that the Bureau has provided them with benefits that the Bureau has not expressly granted.
  • On May 27, 2022, per the CFPB Termination Order, Upstart asked the CFPB to amend the NAL to reduce its term from 36 months to 18 months, meaning it would end three days later on May 30, 2022 .
  • On June 8, 2022, the CFPB announcement that he issued the order to terminate Upstart’s listing on his list of approved NALs.

CFPB Circular Confirms Anti-Discrimination Laws Apply to Algorithms

The CFPB published a circular confirming that federal anti-discrimination law requires explanations of the specific reasons for denying credit applications or taking other adverse action against applicants. The circular warns companies using algorithmic decision engines (or AI engines) that a “black box model” for loan decisions does not exempt the company from explaining adverse actions to applicants as required. the law. The agency warns that with some black box models, users and developers may not be able to know the reasoning behind the model’s results, which could prevent companies from meeting adverse action notification requirements. of ECOA. ECOA and Regulation B require a creditor to provide notice when taking adverse action against a plaintiff, explaining with specific and specific reasons why the creditor took such action. If the creditor uses technology that does not allow them to explain their decision-making process, then the creditor will not be able to comply with the law. In short, complexity, opacity, or time in the market will not be considered excuses for failure to meet a creditor’s notice of adverse action requirements.

BNPL companies invited by the CFPB to declare their credit data

On June 15, 2022, the CFPB published a blog post followed by his request (which we talked about here) into “buy now, pay later” (BNPL) companies. In the message, the agency urges BNPL companies to report positive and negative data to credit bureaus when BNPL payments are provided. In addition, the CFPB encourages the BNPL industry to develop standardized BNPL furnishing codes and formats to provide data that matches BNPL’s unique product offering. Although the major credit bureaus have announced their intention to accept BNPL data, the CFPB is concerned that differences between credit bureau plans could lead to inconsistent treatment of this data, meaning that the provision of this data will benefit consumers less. The CFPB will monitor the BNPL industry’s progress as the consumer credit data reporting changes are implemented.

CFPB launches initiative to improve customer service in major banks

CFPB Director Rohit Chopra led a town hall on June 14, 2022 in Great Falls, Montana to discuss the agency’s new initiative. The CFPB is seeking feedback from consumers on their relationship with their banks, including how they assert their rights to better service with major banks and credit institutions. The town hall included local community organizations, advocates, leaders and members of the public. Together, the group discussed the challenges faced by people in rural Montana and how banking deserts negatively affect Montana’s financial landscape.

Chopra noted that recent banking consolidation has had mixed results for consumers and customer service experiences, especially in rural communities. Rural customers faced reduced access to banking services as they were more likely to go to smaller banks or credit unions, but now live in rural banking deserts with no intimate banking relationship.

Additionally, many financial institutions and tech companies are turning to what Chopra calls “algorithmic banking,” which relies on using large amounts of data about an individual through tracking and surveillance to make predictions. on his behavior and banking habits. Chopra concedes that moving away from traditional banking relationships could eliminate discrimination based on human judgment, but warns that automated technologies are also a problem, as algorithmic biases can unfairly affect results.

To revitalize relationship banking, the CFPB has launched a Request for Information to find out how everyone can assert their right to better customer service with their depository institution. “Big bank customers shouldn’t have to go through an obstacle course to get a clear answer on their account,” Director Chopra said at the town hall meeting. In particular, the CFPB seeks to understand, among other things, (i) the types of information people request from their bank and how they use that information; (ii) what information is not currently available to consumers from their banks; and (iii) any customer service impediments that impede a consumer’s ability to bank (for example, wait times, disconnected calls, or the quality of answers to questions).

The CFPB also seeks to ensure that the algorithmic bank does not receive preferential treatment and must follow the same laws as traditional banks. The CFPB issued a policy in March confirming that financial firms must explain to applicants the specific reasons for denying a credit application or taking other adverse action. He also ordered several Big Tech companies, such as Facebook, Apple and Google, to provide the CFPB with information about their efforts to better monitor payment systems and how they plan to use customer data to power their algorithms.

[View source.]

Workers in red states are quitting their jobs at higher rates and why that may be a good sign

July 21, 2022

Montana Economy

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Employees in Republican states have a higher quit rate than those governed by Democrats, potentially indicating a safer work environment in red states.

Of the top 10 states with the highest quit rates over the past 12 months, eight are Republicans, according to data from WalletHub. This includes Alaska with a 12-month quit rate of 4.18%, followed by Kentucky with 3.74%, Montana with 3.69%, Wyoming with 3.66%, Mississippi with 3.53 %, Idaho with 3.48%, South Carolina with 3.48% and Indiana with 3.42 percent.

The only two Democratic states in the top 10 were Georgia and Arizona in second and tenth place, with 12-month quit rates of 3.86% and 3.37%, respectively.

Employee quit rates tend to be higher when workers are confident of finding another job, which requires a robust economy.

“Higher quit rates are a sign of worker confidence,” Julia Pollak, chief economist at jobs site Zip Recruiter, told MarketPlace in a recent interview.

“When there are more jobs, you’re more likely to pop in and apply for a new one,” she added, according to the outlet.

In a July 5 article, The Wall Street Journal reported that the COVID-19 pandemic “changed the geography” of the US economy as red states recovered economically faster than blue states. Workers moved from the coasts to the central United States and Florida.

The share of jobs in Republican states has increased by more than half a percentage point since February 2020, according to analysis conducted by the Brookings Institution. In May 2022, red states added 341,000 jobs, while blue states lost 1.3 million jobs.

The COVID-19 pandemic has triggered a change in the structure of employment, as more and more companies have opted for remote work. This has allowed many employees to move to red states that have cheaper housing, lower taxes, and less traffic.

Business friendliness

Red states are comparatively more conducive to a business environment, according to CNBC’s 2022 “America’s Top States for Business” ranking. The ranking takes into account 88 metrics spread over 10 major categories. Republican states in the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains regions are dominated in the “business friendliness” category.

Leading the category was North Dakota, followed by Wyoming, Idaho and Montana in second, third and fifth place. They are all Republican states. Arizona, which placed fourth, was the only blue state in the top five.

“Companies are following the path of least resistance,” CNBC analysts said of the business friendliness metric. “This includes a legal and regulatory framework that does not overburden businesses.”

Regarding the overall employment situation across the country, Colin Corbett, an assistant professor of economics at Bradley University, told WalletHub that young workers have re-entered the labor market at levels almost pre- pandemic.

“Older workers who have retired are unlikely to re-enter the workforce unless there is a dramatic change in economic conditions and the willingness of employers to hire them,” Corbett said.


Naveen Athrappully is a reporter who covers world affairs and events at The Epoch Times.

The next generation of NIMBY

July 20, 2022

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This is an edition of The Atlantic Daily, a newsletter that guides you through the biggest stories of the day, helps you discover new ideas and recommends the best in culture. Register here.

The pandemic has enabled many Millennials to buy their first home. Could it also have paved the way for a new breed of NIMBY?

But first, here are three new stories from Atlantic.

fight in the yard

When we think of the typical NIMBY – a derogatory term (short for “Not in my backyard”) for someone who opposes change in their community, especially if they don’t oppose change elsewhere – we have tend to imagine a Boomer-class, waving his fist skyward as someone builds affordable housing or a new wind turbine in his neighborhood. Research backs it up: The types of people who show up at local meetings to oppose new housing are older, more likely to be white, and more likely to be homeowners than those who don’t.

But the pandemic has not only spawned variants of the coronavirus. It may also have accelerated the development of a new variant of the change-averse owner: the Millennial NIMBY.

Over the past two years, house prices have soared as the country’s longstanding housing supply shortfall has turned into demand fueled by low interest rates and increased labor from a distance. As a result, the median selling price of a home in the United States has risen from $313,000 at the start of 2019 to $428,700 at the start of 2022.

New research from Freddie Mac shows that first-time home buyers were “the main driver of increased demand. In 2021, Freddie Mac funded 554,000 loans for first-time buyers, up 22% from 2020,” writes chief economist Sam Khater. “This is the highest level since tracking began in 1994.(emphasis mine).

Becoming an owner does not automatically make you a NIMBY. In fact, the people who attend zoning board meetings to try to block new construction, or who hire lawyers to try to prevent the construction of renewable energy or public transit projects, are very bizarre and represent a very small percentage of people who own homes.

So why am I worried about these new owners? Because I believe many of them will soon be desperate to maintain their property value – a key ingredient of NIMBYism. (If you’re wondering why NIMBY-ism is bad, you can read my longer musings here. But it plays a big role in our critical housing shortage, our failure to build public transportation, and the floundering of renewable energy. projects such as wind and solar farms.)

The economist William Fischel’s book The local voter hypothesis details how homeowners become “voters” and act to avoid potential declines in the value of their property. Importantly, these local voters are becoming extremely risk averse. Even though the new condos down the street probably aren’t going to hurt your home’s value, why take the risk?

Millennials took longer than previous generations to buy their first home, largely because of the Great Recession. But low interest rates in the early 2020s made mortgage payments affordable for many, even as house prices soared. In their fever to take advantage of low rates, many of these new homeowners put everything on the line: Redfin found that “potential buyers who bid all the money were more than four times more likely to win a bidding war than those who did. not in 2021. They also found that waiving pre-inspection improved the odds of a competitive bid being successful by 25%. Another report says a record share of homebuyers bought their homes without seeing them.

So now a large number of Americans have not only invested a large portion of their savings in new homes, but are also more likely to encounter costly problems with these new homes, given the frenzy with which they bought them. . Unlike their older counterparts, who likely have more diversified savings portfolios, these younger homeowners have tied up their money in their homes. While all homeowners care about the value of their property, it stands to reason that people who have purchased homes with potential resale value issues – or who have no other savings to fall back on in case medical or financial emergency – will be all the more concerned about any potential decline in value.

It’s one of the first steps on the path to becoming a NIMBY: feeling like your entire financial future hinges on the value of a single asset, an asset whose value you have very little control over. Home values ​​depend on many variables, including local crime rates, the quality of local public schools, the weather, and the ineffable feeling that a neighborhood is “cool.” It’s a frightening position to find oneself in, especially in a country that leaves its elderly, sick and poor without an adequate social safety net.

It’s possible that young owners are less prone to NIMBY-ism than their ancestors. After all, they are more liberal and likely to accept new neighbors, and they are also less likely to have anti-tenant sensitivities, given that they have spent more of their lives as tenants themselves. themselves. But I’m worried – when personal finances collide with political ideals, guessing who the winner will be isn’t hard.


Today’s News

  1. The European Commission has proposed a natural gas rationing plan, hoping to avert a winter energy crisis if Russia cuts its gas exports.
  2. A Georgia judge has ordered Rudy Giuliani to testify in a criminal investigation into election interference.
  3. South Carolina disbarred attorney Alex Murdaugh has pleaded not guilty to murdering his wife and son.


Evening reading
Max Guter

By Alexis Madrigal

(A 2018 story from the Atlantic archive)

ChuChu TV, the company responsible for some of the most viewed toddler content on YouTube, has a cute enough origin story. Vinoth Chandar, the CEO, had always played on YouTube, making Hindu devotions and short videos of his father, a well-known Indian music producer. But after he and his wife had a baby girl, whom they nicknamed “Chu Chu”, he realized he had a new audience – of just one.

Read the article completely.

More Atlantic

cultural break

Daniel Kaluuya as OJ Haywood in
Universal images

Lily. A poem for Wednesday, “Portrait of the artist with the family dog”.

Look. Jordan Peele Nope is spectacular, indulgent and brutal. You won’t be able to look away.

Play our daily crosswords.

Republicans have already unleashed a firestorm over how companies eager to help their employees have abortions are actually exploiting them to keep working. But the advocacy of American companies on the issue is not so simple. Today, The New Republic published an article reporting that CVS, the nation’s largest pharmacy chain, is running its local branches in states including Alabama, Arkansas, Idaho, Montana, Oklahoma and Texas to ensure that a prescription filled with misoprostol or methotrexate is not going to be used to induce an abortion. Some drugs, like methotrexate, that can be used to end a pregnancy are also used to treat diseases (like lupus). It seems clear to me that fear of liability is going to make companies extremely risk averse when it comes to helping women seeking needed reproductive care, especially as many states consider giving their residents the ability to sue anyone who helps a woman obtain an abortion.

— Jerusalem

Isabel Fattal contributed to this newsletter.

No food, no fuel and no jobs: the economic disaster engulfing Sri Lanka

July 20, 2022

Montana Lending

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Before the collapse of the Sri Lankan economy, Nazir, 50, spent scorching days hauling carts full of rolls of cloth, piles of coconuts and sacks of garlic through the narrow streets of the market in Pettah to Colombo.

Now dressed in a black cap, T-shirt and gray pants, Nazir sits idly in front of dozens of empty carts, listening to speeches on his mobile phone. He turns up the volume and points to the screen: “Aragalaya!referring to the popular uprising in Sri Lanka that overthrew its president last week.

On a good day, Nazir earned the equivalent of $8, just enough to feed his family of six, of which he is the breadwinner. “Now the business is dead,” he said. If he’s out of work today, he’ll go home with less than a dollar in his pocket.

Sri Lanka’s economic collapse has been blamed on former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who flew to Singapore after initially fleeing the country on a military plane to the Maldives as a wave of protests rocked the island nation.

Protesters were furious with the president for borrowing heavily to build China-backed projects and his eccentric policies, which included a ban on fertilizer imports.

Erratic economic management has been compounded by a drop in tourism revenue due to the coronavirus pandemic and the war in Ukraine, which has failed Sri Lanka and sent its currency plummeting.

Sri Lanka, which has run out of foreign currency, has experienced severe fuel shortages, leading to mile-long queues for petrol © Arun Sankar/AFP/Getty Images

Sri Lanka’s debt stands at $51 billion, just over half of which is owed to bilateral and multilateral lenders, including China.

The economic fallout has had devastating consequences. “My family is skipping meals,” Nazir said. “At dinner, we share pieces of bread with coconut sambal. I use firewood for cooking because there is no fuel or kerosene.

Stories like Nazir’s reverberate through the Pettah Market, which was once a teeming maze of clothing shops and stalls selling everything from the latest electronics and washing up liquid to spices and coffee.

But the half-empty streets surrounding the country’s most important market, located directly behind the port of Colombo, are an indication of a failing Sri Lanka, which has been battered by soaring prices, rising unemployment, poverty and hunger.

With foreign currency reserves depleted, the nation of 22 million has run out of money to import fuel, leading to mile-long queues at gas stations. The fuel shortage has effectively driven many people out of work and forced schools, offices and businesses across the country to close.

On the other side of the market, MT Niyas, 55, drinks his second coffee of the day at the Lucky Cool Spot, a café serving workers with buns, hot drinks and cigarettes sold individually.

His sunburned body covered from head to toe in flour, Niyas said his daily wage for carrying sacks on his back had more than halved to SLR 2,500 ($7) as the trucks stopped working. arrive, while bus fares doubled to 70 rupees.

“I’ve worked here since 1981 and it’s the worst I’ve ever had,” Niyas said. “It’s good that the former president is gone. All we ask of whoever replaces him is that we can eat three full meals a day. It can’t be that hard!

MT Nias
MT Niyas: “All we ask. . . is that we can have three full meals a day” © Antoni Slodkowski/FT

Nisham, the 26-year-old bearded owner, steps in as he clears tables for new customers, gives change and pours fresh tea: “The workers came maybe 10 times in a long day for a tea quick or to chat. Now they come maybe twice a day.

He announces dizzying price increases in the last quarter: the price of milk powder has tripled to reach SLR 3,000 per kg, while those of sugar and even tea, which Sri Lanka exports all over the world, have more than doubled.

Nisham is open about his hatred for the Rajapaksa family, which has dominated Sri Lankan politics for decades. But there’s also a hint of wounded pride, echoed in many other conversations. “We have many natural resources in our beautiful country: tea, rubber, coffee, precious stones,” he said. “We should be able to do better than that.”

He and his fellow traders complained that ghost brokers stepped in to fill the void after banks stopped lending money. A 65-year-old woman named Aruna, who sells curry leaves, said she borrowed SLR 10,000 to keep her business afloat. But she has to repay SLR 1000 per day for 12 days.

Day laborers like those at Lucky Cool Spot are among the hardest hit, but they are no exception. The World Food Program said 3 million people were receiving emergency humanitarian aid after food inflation hit 80% last month. Nearly 90% of all households skip meals or skimp to make food last longer, the organization added.

Afzal Fasehudeen, a construction engineer who came to Pettah to stock up on leeks and carrots, had no doubts who was responsible for the crisis.

“This whole disappearance was caused by massive mismanagement and a complete lack of proper planning. The Rajapaksas have started construction projects right, left and center – it’s ridiculous,” Fasehudeen said.

As the construction boom came to a screeching halt, Fasehudeen said he and many of his friends who finished college two years ago were planning to leave the country.

“My business could soon go bankrupt. I don’t want to leave, but if nothing changes in the next few months, I will try to find a job in one of the Gulf countries,” Fasehudeen said.

“Everything increases, but not income. People are angry.

Same Goal for SBA Regional Leaders: Helping Small Businesses

July 20, 2022

Montana Loans

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Castle Phil, business time

Aikta Marcoulier

Aikta Marcoulier worked for over 10 years running a center in Colorado Springs providing a range of small business services.

According to Marcoulier, it was a job that prepared her well for her latest efforts to help small businesses, but on a much larger scale.

President Joe Biden appointed Marcoulier in April as Region VIII administrator of the US Small Business Administration. She oversees federal agency programs and services in Colorado as well as Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah and Wyoming.

His new role is to support the Biden administration and help district SBA offices in his area achieve their goals. She also expects the job to involve extensive online meetings and extensive travel to connect with staff and business owners in a six-state region that spans more than 580,000 square miles, the most rural of all the SBA regions in the country.

At the same time, Marcoulier said one thing hasn’t changed, and that’s his goal to help small businesses succeed.

To that end, she said she’s excited about the resources the SBA offers, including financing assistance, government contracts, and disaster recovery.

She said she was particularly excited about an initiative to increase the share of federal contracts going to small businesses and strengthen domestic manufacturing and supply chains. Given the $1.2 trillion in funding included in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, there are many additional opportunities for small businesses, she added.

Prior to her appointment, Marcoulier worked for more than 10 years as executive director of the Small Business Development Center in Colorado Springs.

A network of 14 full-time SBDCs and more than 50 part-time satellite offices are located throughout Colorado, including the Grand Valley.

The centers offer a range of services, including free and low-cost advice and instruction on all aspects of starting and growing a business.

In her more than 10 years as director, the Pikes Peak SBDC has twice received the SBA Region VIII Award for Excellence and Innovation. The 2014 award recognized efforts to help businesses recover from wildfires and floods.

Marcoulier received the Colorado State Star Award, the highest honor given to SBDC employees in the state.

In addition to his other duties, Marcoulier created and managed a cybersecurity program providing training and guidance to small businesses in Colorado.

Prior to joining the SBDC, Marcoulier worked as Director of Partnerships Marketing for Professional Bull Riders and before that as a Project Manager with the Native American Sport Council.

She earned a bachelor’s degree in economics and psychology from the University of Iowa. She then earned a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Phoenix.

Marcoulier said she was thrilled to accept the appointment as SBA regional administrator as she continued her work helping small businesses. She works out of Denver, but oversees agency operations in a six-state region.

The SBA offers a variety of programs and services, including those involving loans, government contracts, and disaster relief. The SBA’s Colorado District Office supported a total of nearly $1.4 billion in loans in fiscal year 2021, or $34 million in Mesa County.

Small businesses in Colorado are recovering from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and related restrictions, Marcoulier said. But challenges persist, she said, including labor shortages and supply chain issues. Inflation and the threat of a recession could alter spending in a way that would affect small businesses.

Marcoulier said the SBA’s efforts to increase the proportion of federal contracts going to small businesses could help, especially given the funding that will be spent under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. She encouraged small business owners to work with the SBA and procurement technical assistance centers to learn more about selling goods and services to federal, state and local governments.

Marcoulier said she loves her job at the Pikes Peak SBDC, but now looks forward to continuing that work on a larger scale as the SBA’s regional administrator.

For more information about the programs and services offered by the U.S. Small Business Administration, visit the website at

Thomas McGarity on Trump and the fall of corporate law and order

July 18, 2022

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Koch Industries spent $3.1 million in the first three months of the Trump administration, largely to secure the confirmation of Scott Pruitt as head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

As of July 2018, more than sixteen federal investigations were underway into Pruitt’s mismanagement and corruption.

But Pruitt was just the first in a long line of pro-industry, incompetent and destructive agency chiefs put in place by the Trump administration in its effort to dismantle the protective edifice of federal government.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has been the subject of eighteen separate federal investigations and has been fired.

Now Pruitt and Zinke, having been ousted from public office, are making a comeback.

Pruitt is running for US Senate in Oklahoma.

And last week, Zinke won the Republican primary for Congress in Montana’s first congressional district.

“While many progressives rightly fear that red and purple states will send more Christian nationalists and Big Lie fanatics to Congress this year, they should also worry that these states will rekindle the fortunes of self-defeating wrecking balls. enlargers like Pruitt and Zinke,” Thomas McGarity, a law professor at the University of Texas, wrote recently in a Nation magazine article titled Two of the biggest crooks of the Trump era are plotting a comeback. “Pruitt and Zinke were members of the wrecking crew that President Donald Trump assembled in January 2017 to roll back public health and environmental protections inside the executive branch. Pruitt served as the first administrator of the Trump administration’s Environmental Protection Agency, and Zinke served as its first Interior Secretary.

“Both men were responsible for protecting public health and the environment. Yet both have shied away from their legal obligations in the Trump administration’s determined pursuit of “energy dominance.” And both had a strong sense of entitlement to spend taxpayer dollars on creature comforts, which quickly led to their downfall.

McGarity is the author of the new book Demolition Agenda: How Trump tried to dismantle the US government and what Biden must do to save it (New Press, 2022).

What is your analysis of the state of business regulation today compared to the early days of OSHA and EPA and major regulators?

“It’s a lot lower,” McGarity said Corporate crime reporter in an interview last month. “I published a book a few years ago called freedom to harm. In this book, I have described four assaults on regulation.

“The first one came during the Ronald Reagan years. It kind of fell through because they had a number of scandals with Anne Gorsuch and James Watt. And Bill Ruckelshaus came along and tried to get things done.

“But then we had the Clinton administration and Congress Gingrich. It was a serious threat to the administrative state. They were going after basic environmental laws, OSHA and regulations. But they failed.

“There was a bill that was supposed to be an omnibus bill to slow down regulatory agencies, but it failed by a vote. Clinton triangulated and significantly slowed down regulation.

“The third assault came with the George W. Bush administration. We have seen a total slowdown. No significant new regulations and many rollbacks of existing regulations. »

“The fourth assault was quite brief. It came with the 2010 election and the Tea Party and the leadership change in Congress. This slowed down the Obama administration. But when he won re-election in 2012, Obama realized he could never get anything out of Congress. But he accomplished a lot administratively.

“Then we had the fifth assault, which I write about in The Demolition Agenda. This was started by the Trump administration. And there we saw an attempt to roll back almost everything the Obama administration has done. They have sometimes failed in court.

Trump was elected as an outsider who would drain the swamp, clean the swamp. Ordinary people thought – well, this is a swamp. And you have documented the influence of business on the regulatory process in all jurisdictions.

Most people know that corruption is rampant inside the device. And they wanted to elect someone who would at least say: empty the swamp.

“People from all political walks of life agreed. And this populist revolution could have gone either way. People were really pissed that these Wall Street banks were being bailed out and ordinary people were struggling to pay their mortgages, they didn’t get a bailout. It could have gone either way.

“Unfortunately, Obama brought in people like Larry Summers, the same people who, under the Clinton administration, deregulated the banking industry. And Obama brought them in to try to fix the problem. The right, through his think tanks and ground troops, was able to refocus this populist anger away from the banks and various businesses that were making life miserable for ordinary people and redirected the anger back to the government.

The Trump machine effectively portrayed Hillary as a tool of Wall Street. And she was lecturing at Goldman Sachs for $650,000.

“Yes. And we’re talking about the same people. We’re talking about Larry Summers as an adviser to Hillary. And a lot of the same people who were advising Bill Clinton to repeal Glass Steagall. Instead of focusing on health care, Obama should have gone after Wall Street directly.

But they were married on Wall Street. They weren’t going to do that.

“There is this problem.”

Demolition Agenda features Scott Pruitt and Ryan Zinke, two returning Trump appointees.

“Pruitt was tasked with tearing down the EPA. He has made a good start in this work. Zinke was tasked with tearing down the Home Office. He also got off to a good start in that job before they were both totally immersed in the scandal.

“Pruitt is from Oklahoma. He was Oklahoma’s attorney general, where he took pride in eliminating the environmental protection division of the attorney general’s office and suing the EPA as often as he could to protect the industry from environmental pollution. ‘energy. He was sending letters to members of Congress and others, letters that were actually written by energy companies.

“Pruitt was an ideal choice if you wanted to eliminate the EPA. Turns out he had no use for the officials. Civil servants are heroes in my book. And the other heroes are the environmental and public interest groups that fought these efforts in court to tear down federal protections. Civil servants tried to do their jobs and follow their statutory mandates.

“But Pruitt and Zinke were trying to circumvent their officials. They were not interested in their expertise.

“The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) was created at the time quite recently to protect consumers from payday lenders and banks using abusive tactics. But then Richard Cordray, the first head of the CFPB left, and Trump appointed Mick Melvaney as his head. And eventually, the agency agreed with its challengers that the agency was structured unconstitutionally. Mulvaney said – we should allow the president to fire the head of the CFPB. The Supreme Court agreed.

“It was ironic because it allowed Biden to fire Kathleen Kraninger, who succeeded Mulvaney, and replace her with his own person.”

“But back to Pruitt and Zinke. They both left office under clouds of corruption. And now they’re running for Congress. Zinke won his primary this week. And Pruitt’s primary is later this month.

“They are like Trump. Scandals make them more attractive. They thumb their noses at propriety. This is something that mystifies me.

[For the complete Interview with Thomas McGarity, see page 36 Corporate Crime Reporter 26(11), June 27, 2022, print edition only.]

Avantax Advisory Services Inc. holds $636,000 worth of stock in M&T Bank Co. (NYSE:MTB)

July 18, 2022

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Avantax Advisory Services Inc. increased its stake in the shares of M&T Bank Co. (NYSE: MTBGet a rating) by 24.1% in the first quarter, according to its most recent SEC filing. The company held 3,759 shares of the financial services provider after acquiring an additional 730 shares during the period. Avantax Advisory Services Inc.’s holdings in M&T Bank were worth $636,000 when it last filed with the SEC.

Other institutional investors have also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Spire Wealth Management increased its holdings of M&T Bank shares by 8.3% in the fourth quarter. Spire Wealth Management now owns 896 shares of the financial services provider valued at $138,000 after purchasing an additional 69 shares during the period. Russell Investments Group Ltd. increased its holdings of M&T Bank shares by 20.6% in the fourth quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 95,710 shares of the financial services provider valued at $14,689,000 after purchasing an additional 16,362 shares during the period. Wealthfront Advisers LLC increased its holdings of M&T Bank shares by 7.1% in the fourth quarter. Wealthfront Advisers LLC now owns 26,468 shares of the financial services provider valued at $4,065,000 after purchasing an additional 1,763 shares during the period. Trust Co. of Vermont increased its holdings of M&T Bank shares by 1.0% in the fourth quarter. Trust Co. of Vermont now owns 11,606 shares of the financial services provider valued at $1,783,000 after purchasing 117 additional shares during the period. Finally, Denali Advisors LLC increased its stake in M&T Bank shares by 21.3% in the fourth quarter. Denali Advisors LLC now owns 570 shares of the financial services provider valued at $88,000 after purchasing an additional 100 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds hold 87.61% of the company’s shares.

Insider activity

In other news, Vice President Kevin J. Pearson sold 5,000 shares of the company in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 17. The shares were sold at an average price of $169.71, for a total value of $848,550.00. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 39,008 shares of the company, valued at approximately $6,620,047.68. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, accessible via the SEC website. Separately, Executive Vice President Robert J. Bojdak sold 525 shares of the company in a transaction dated Wednesday, June 8. The shares were sold at an average price of $177.82, for a total value of $93,355.50. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 19,075 shares of the company, valued at approximately $3,391,916.50. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, accessible via this link. Additionally, Vice Chairman Kevin J. Pearson sold 5,000 shares of the company in a trade dated Tuesday, May 17. The shares were sold at an average price of $169.71, for a total transaction of $848,550.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 39,008 shares of the company, valued at approximately $6,620,047.68. Disclosure of this sale can be found here. In the past ninety days, insiders have sold 7,725 shares of the company valued at $1,335,332. 0.73% of the shares are held by insiders of the company.

Analysts set new price targets

The VTT has been the subject of several research analyst reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. cut its price target on M&T Bank shares from $200.00 to $195.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a Friday, July 1 report. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft raised its price target on M&T Bank shares from $180.00 to $200.00 in a Friday, March 25 research note. upgraded M&T Bank shares from a “sell” to a “hold” rating in a Friday, June 10 research note. Wedbush raised its price target on M&T Bank shares from $187.00 to $212.00 in a Thursday, April 21 research note. Finally, the Goldman Sachs Group raised its price target on M&T Bank shares from $183.00 to $210.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a Monday, April 4 research note. Seven equity research analysts gave the stock a hold rating and seven gave the company a buy rating. According to data from MarketBeat, the stock has an average rating of “moderate buy” and a consensus target price of $190.51.

M&T Bank shares up 3.7%

Shares of MTB stock opened at $156.21 on Monday. The company has a debt ratio of 0.21, a quick ratio of 1.05 and a current ratio of 1.05. The company’s 50-day moving average is $166.21 and its 200-day moving average is $171.02. The stock has a market capitalization of $28.03 billion, a price/earnings ratio of 11.93, a PEG ratio of 0.74 and a beta of 0.89. M&T Bank Co. has a 52-week low of $128.46 and a 52-week high of $186.95.

M&T Bank (NYSE: MTBGet a rating) last released its results on Wednesday, April 20. The financial services provider reported earnings per share (EPS) of $2.73 for the quarter, beating analyst consensus estimates of $2.26 by $0.47. The company posted revenue of $1.45 billion for the quarter, versus $1.43 billion for analysts. M&T Bank posted a net margin of 29.31% and a return on equity of 11.45%. During the same period of the previous year, the company achieved EPS of $3.41. Sell-side analysts expect M&T Bank Co. to post EPS of 15.12 for the current year.

M&T Bank announces dividend

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, June 30. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, June 1 received a dividend of $1.20. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, May 31. This represents a dividend of $4.80 on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.07%. M&T Bank’s payout ratio is 36.67%.

M&T Bank Company Profile

(Get a rating)

M&T Bank Corporation operates as a bank holding company that provides commercial and retail banking services. The Company’s Business Banking segment provides deposit, lending, cash management and other financial services to small businesses and professionals. Its Commercial Banking segment provides deposit products, commercial loans and leases, letters of credit and cash management services to medium and large commercial enterprises.

See also

Institutional ownership by quarter for M&T Bank (NYSE:MTB)

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3 Crypto Stocks to Buy Before a Crypto Bounce

July 16, 2022

Montana Lending

Comments Off on 3 Crypto Stocks to Buy Before a Crypto Bounce

The dismal performance of the crypto market has not only impacted cryptocurrencies themselves, but also companies that incorporate these assets into their business models. The crypto landscape seems to be changing day by day, but stocks like Coinbase (PIECE OF MONEY 0.69%), Marathon Digital Backgrounds (MARA 0.50%)and To block (SQ 5.70%) are best positioned to capitalize on a potential rebound in cryptocurrencies.


Neil Patel (Coinbase): With down actions a whopping 78% in 2022 (as of July 12), Coinbase tracked the significant weakness that plagued the broader crypto market. But the company has proven it can thrive if the conditions are right, making it a great stock to own in a turnaround scenario.

Coinbase’s business deteriorated in the first quarter, which is part of the reason why the stock took such a beating. In the first quarter of 2022, the company generated 87% of its total sales through transaction fees which depend on the volume of transactions mainly from retail customers on its platform. Unsurprisingly, as the entire digital asset market crashed, investor interest in cryptocurrencies also increased. And that means less activity on Coinbase’s network, which translates to net revenue of $1.2 billion in the first quarter, down 27% year-over-year.

If the crypto market rebounds, it’s not hard to see how Coinbase would benefit immediately. A rise in crypto prices would attract speculators looking to chase the upside yields, resulting in higher fees for the business. In 2021, a strong market for cryptocurrencies, Coinbase generated $3.6 billion in profit on $7.4 billion in revenue, up 1,025% and 545%, respectively, from the last year. The company is undoubtedly affected by the volatility of crypto, but in good times, the finances speak for themselves.

Besides being just a brokerage and exchange operator profiting from rising crypto asset prices, Coinbase’s management team, led by Founder and CEO Brian Armstrong, hopes to build a crypto economy dominated by crypto assets. utility rather than through financial speculation. The goal is to use cryptography to help create a new financial system and application platform.

Additionally, Coinbase Ventures, the company’s in-house investment arm, has made hundreds of investments in crypto businesses around the world. This gives Coinbase even more skin in the game to benefit from if things turn around and valuations rise again. Therefore, it is hard to find better stock than Coinbase that investors should consider in anticipation of a crypto rebound.


RJ Fulton (Marathon Digital Holdings): Marathon Digital Holdings is the largest Bitcoin mining company by market capitalization – and for good reason. Since its inception in 2010, the company has gone through several crypto winters and prioritized innovative business models that are needed in a competitive industry. While in the midst of the current crypto winter, Marathon is still pursuing new ways to stay profitable.

Marathon has been busy for the past two months. The company has begun moving miners from their primary location in Montana to a new facility in West Texas that will offer lower energy costs.

These miners leaving Montana will join 19,000 other miners who are currently awaiting federal approval to get power so they can start mining Bitcoin. Once powered up, the 19,000 miners will increase Marathon’s mining power by nearly 50% from current levels.

To quantify mining power, a statistic known as hashrate is used. Hashrate is measured in exahashes per second (EH/s). It could be compared to the power of a car. Marathon’s current hashrate is only around 3.9 PE/s. This ranks near the top of the industry, but not as high as the company hopes it will be in the future.

The company has set a goal to increase its hashrate to 23.3 PE/s by 2023, an increase of almost 800%. To achieve this, another 49,000 miners are expected to join the 19,000 waiting for power in West Texas by the end of September. And the company does not stop there. Not only does it plan to increase its capacity, but it has also pledged to be carbon neutral by 2023.

Marathon leads an industry that is no stranger to innovation. The widespread crypto downturn has shredded Bitcoin mining company stocks. Companies that continue to innovate are the ones investors should be looking to add to their portfolio if a crypto rebound is on the horizon.

To block

Michael Byrne (Block): Although not as closely associated with cryptocurrency as Coinbase or Marathon Digital, Block (the company formerly known as Square) has a strong claim to be the ultimate Bitcoin stock. It starts with the CEO. Jack Dorsey has been one of Bitcoin’s most ardent and visible supporters in years and has reportedly stepped down as CEO of Bitcoin. Twitter so he can focus more on bitcoin. The company even changed its name from Square to Block to more directly reflect its focus on Bitcoin and blockchain technology. But it’s not just about talking – whether it’s onboarding millions of users to the Bitcoin Lightning Network with Cash App or developing new Bitcoin mining rigs, Block is becoming an increasingly part of more entrenched of bitcoin’s future.

Block brought the Bitcoin Lightning Network, a solution that allows Bitcoin to scale efficiently for small transactions, to Cash App in 2022 and put it in front of over 40 million users. Users of Cash App’s Cash Card products can choose to round up their debit or credit card purchases and use the change to buy Bitcoins. Cash App users can also choose to convert part of their salary into Bitcoin seamlessly. Miles Suter, Cash App’s Crypto Product Manager, said: “This is the biggest rollout of a feature like this to date. With two clicks, you’ll be able to choose a percentage between one and a hundred and boom. , you have finished. ”

Outside of Cash App, Block partners with Telsa on a joint venture to mine Bitcoin in Texas using the company’s Megapacks and solar panels. Elsewhere, Block’s “TBD” business segment is working on ambitious if somewhat esoteric projects like developing what it calls Web5, a bitcoin-centric answer to Web3, and a decentralized bitcoin exchange. It’s important to note that Block is more a play on broader Bitcoin adoption than cryptocurrencies as a whole, as Dorsey is an outspoken Bitcoin maximalist. Also, it’s worth noting that the company’s bitcoin ventures are only a small part of its business today, unlike stocks like Coinbase or Marathon Digital which have much more direct exposure to cryptocurrency.

Block is a boon for bitcoin because it brings millions of new users into the bitcoin network. On the other hand, Block will also benefit from the growing interest and adoption of Bitcoin by the general public, as it is arguably the best known and easiest way for a new user to start getting involved. in bitcoin.

CUNA’s Stverak: CUs continue to meet needs in a difficult economy | 2022-07-15

July 15, 2022

Montana Economy

Comments Off on CUNA’s Stverak: CUs continue to meet needs in a difficult economy | 2022-07-15

Credit unions are invested in their communities because they are part of the community, Jason Stverak, CUNA’s deputy advocacy director for congressional relations, said on AM 1100 The Flag this week. Stverak spoke with host Scott Hennan on issues including rising consumer costs, the role of community financial institutions and the business lending climate.

“We don’t see the signs of a healthy, growing economy,” he said, adding that consumers “are increasingly turning to their community financial institutions like credit unions to solve the problem: how are they dealing with these tough financial times?”

Stverak also noted that credit unions continue to find ways to serve members and businesses as costs and interest rates rise.

“Credit unions are working with their members to grow small businesses and keep them open during these difficult times,” he said. “Our figures show that the number of loans granted to credit unions is 8% higher at this time this year compared to last year. So we are seeing a lot more members turning to us to meet their needs.

The show airs from Fargo, ND and reaches listeners across the state, as well as Minnesota, Montana and South Dakota.