Welcome to Bespoke Brunch Reads — a linkfest of the favorite things we read over the past week. The links are mostly market related, but there are some other interesting subjects covered as well. We hope you enjoy the food for thought as a supplement to the research we provide you during the week.

Booms (For Now)

This Trend is Happening Now Across All 50 of the United States by Jigar Shah (Unreasonable)

A quick summary of the exploding growth of the solar industry, especially in terms of job creation where it is virtually unmatched despite flying decidedly below the radar in recent policy discussions. [Link]

A day of insanity that typifies Toronto’s housing market by Meagan Campbell (Maclean’s)

Home prices up by almost 30% YoY? Surging interest in speculation? Massive conferences featuring Tony Robbins and Pitbull? Welcome to the wild world of Southern Ontario real estate. [Link]

Busts (Maybe Later)

Sir Tim Berners-Lee lays out nightmare scenario where AI runs the financial world by Scott Carey (Techworld)

Will AIs chasing each other’s tails into an endless loop of trading and counter-trading be how financial markets work in the glorious future? [Link]

DALIO: ‘I’m worried about what the next downturn might look like’ by Rachael Levy (Business Insider)

Somewhat unsurprisingly for a man running one of the largest fixed income portfolios in history, Bridgewater’s Dalio thinks rates might go down. [Link]

This Week In Airlines

United Airlines passenger claims scorpion stung him on flight to Canada by Ashifa Kassam (The Guardian)

It turns out that the “re-accommodation” of Peter Dao wasn’t the only unfortunate incident on a United flight this week. [Link]

Not So Fast: Would 3rd Runway on Rikers Island Alleviate LaGuardia’s Ailments? by Phik Derner Jr. (NYC Aviation)

Supplemental capacity for LGA after the closure of the Rikers prison would not help improve the mess that is New York City’s aviation landscape. [Link]


The Stats of the Furious (Bloomberg)

An amusing array of charts, graphs, and anecdotes surveying the 7-film franchise’s history on the big screen. [Link]

When Pixels Collide (Sudoscript)

What happens when you give a massive blank canvas of pixels to Reddit? A fascinating story of spontaneous order, human ambition, and online culture. [Link]


How a Browser Extension Could Shake Up Academic Publishing by Lindsay McKenzie (The Chronicle of Higher Education)

Unpaywall is hoping to provide instant access to non-gated versions of academic research as users browse over sites offering paid versions of the same material. [Link]

Teachers cash in, big time, by putting lessons up for sale by Carolyn Thompson (Yahoo!/AP)

Commanding revenues in the millions, teachers are sharing their most effective lesson plans across the internet and adding supplemental income. [Link; auto-playing video]


Amazon Said to Mull Whole Foods Bid Before Jana Stepped In by Spencer Soper and Craig Giammona (Bloomberg)

Combining two of the buzziest (if not most profitable) consumer brands out there was reportedly a possibility in recent weeks; Whole Foods is still being prompted to sell itself by Jana Partners. [Link]

How Amazon Go (probably) makes “just walk out” groceries a reality by Haomiao Huang (Ars Technica)

Restaurants without cashiers and no need to actually offer payment before leaving the store involve a number of technical advances used in combination. [Link]

Weird News

Oregon may lift constitutional ban on dueling by Jazz Shaw (Hot Air)

Removing a constitutional ban on dueling is fortunately not going to lead demands for satisfaction and discharged rounds at 10 paces. [Link]

The Philippines

A Businessman’s Murder Unmasks a Web of Violent Police by Eun-Young Jeong and James Hookway (WSJ)

The horrifying tale of an innocent South Korean businessman’s demise at the hands of police in the violence-wracked anti-drug regime of Rodrigo Duterte, the President of the Philippines. [Link; paywall]

Consumer Defaults

Why young rich dudes say they’re about to default: [shrug] by Alexandra Scaggs (FT Alphaville)

Almost 40% of consumers expecting to default on a loan payment in the next 12 months offer “no specific reason”; most of those consumers are higher income and relatively upwardly mobile. [Link; registration required]


Trump’s budget director on what’s on, and off, the table for cuts by John Harwood (CNBC)

An interest bit of insight into possible policy priorities for the Trump administration below the principals level. [Link; auto-playing video]


Yale Endowment Blasts Low-Fee Critics, Says Gains Would Lag by Janet Lorin (Bloomberg)

In a sharp pushback against endowment peers that have started switching towards passive investment vehicles, Yale claims their active portfolio’s returns justify its fees. [Link]

Have a great Sunday!

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