Trade War; Spending Bill; Citibank Restricts Guns

The Water Coolest

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Estimated Read Time: 3 minutes and 23 seconds



The House of Representatives passed a $1.3T spending bill by a count of 256 -167 that would provide funding to the military, border security, and other domestic programs. The 2,232-page bill needs to be approved by the Senate unanimously before an 11:59 PM shutdown tonight. Light reading, anyone?

Before you say, “$1T to build a wall?!” Here’s a look at some of the actual details in the spending bill, per CNBC:

  • Department of Defense: $80B
  • Border wall: $1.57B
  • Opioid abuse treatment: $4B
  • Infrastructure/highways: $10B
  • Mental health and school safety programs: $2B
  • Increased gun sale background checks
  • “adjust an issue from the GOP tax bill that helped agriculture cooperatives”… well that sounds sketch AF
  • Will not include measures to shore up ACA health insurance marketplaces
  • Does not pull funding from Planned Parenthood

Apparently, both parties and POTUS are in support of the bill … as long as it doesn’t include a new tunnel in and out of Manhattan and a fully funded border wall, of course.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “I’m fascinated on how there is an actual chance that a 2,232-page document can get through Senate review and passed in two days. This bill is basically the underage kid that knows the bouncers: they’re good, just wave em through!”



President Trump is ready to fight back, and not just on Twitter. The President announced that he was introducing tariffs that would affect $50B to $60B worth of Chinese goods.

The tariff will affect roughly 10% of the $500B in Chinese goods coming into the US every year. There will also be tighter restrictions on acquisitions and technology transfers.

The tariff on each good will be around 25%, and the White House claims they’re targeting over 1.3k product categories. Not to be outdone, the Chinese have already responded by threatening reciprocal tariffs on 128 US products in two stages worth about $3B. Products affected include pork, wine, fruit, and steel.

According to DJT, the Chinese use intimidation tactics and state-funded acquisitions in an effort to make off with technology and intellectual property owned by the US.

All of this is good news, of course, if you happen to be a fan of global trade wars. The announcement of the tariffs resulted in a 2.5% drop in the S&P 500 on Thursday.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Nothing like a good old-fashioned trade war to get the juices flowing! Not nearly as bad as a regular war, but still not ideal. Things are going to be really awkward at the next G20 dinner table.”



Here’s something you don’t see every day: a major financial institution with a conscience. Love it or hate it, it looks like Citibank is putting people over profits with their plan to place the following firearm restrictions on banking customers. Citi clients must …

  • Only sell guns if customers have passed a background check
  • Restrict firearm sales to people under 21
  • Refuse to sell bump stocks or high-capacity magazines

Welp, it appears that Citigroup is out of the running for the rights to the NRA-branded credit cards that First National Bank of Omaha had issued up until last month.

Citi’s restrictions will apply to small businesses, commercial and institutional clients, and credit card partners. The entire bank essentially. No word on if the regulations will apply to packing heat on Citibikes.

The US’ fourth-largest bank isn’t the first major US firm to take a stance. Big box retailers, tech firms, and even outdoor goods companies are tightening restrictions.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Nothing to see here, just a major financial institution willing to alienate a major portion of the population. In the span of two days, two of the most important companies in the world, Google and Citi, have spoken up on gun control. The times they are a changing, folks.”




  • Uber is denying reports that they are testing FLYING CARS in Kenya. Sorry Dara, just because Kenya is a 3rd world country does not mean this can be listed as a Corporate Responsibility Initiative.
  • Netflix has developed a new font, called Netflix Sans, that is going to save them millions of dollars *cue Dr. Evil*. The practice is common among large corporations looking to cut down on the cost of paying licensing fees for access to fonts. They do know there are free fonts on the internet, right?
  • Stephen Allen Wynn, the founder and former CEO of Wynn Resorts, has sold off his entire stake in the company. This leaves his ex-wife Elaine as the largest shareholder. Thus cementing Wayne Newton’s place as the undisputed King of the Strip.
  • Dropbox will IPO at $21 per share and are 25x oversubscribed for their 36M shares. They will start trading today under the symbol ‘DBX.’
  • US indices were up yesterday:
    • DOW: -2.93%
    • S&P 500: -2.52%
    • NASDAQ: -2.43%