11/19/20 Power Five

1. What is the Current Student Debt Situation? – A few minutes on Twitter lately and you’re guaranteed to find people across the ideological spectrum arguing about student loan forgiveness. We will be posting several pieces in the coming weeks to dive into the research. This piece provides a great overview of who holds debt and how forgiveness may assist not only their financial health, but the country’s.

2. Destinations on the Rise for 2021 – Remember traveling? Nat Geo’s list of must-see places next year (fingers crossed).

3. Capitalism: Amazing and Inadequate – “The coronavirus crisis has cost the United States at least $16 trillion in terms of lost lives, lost quality of life, and lost economic activity. If a pandemic happens even once a century, spending something like $160 billion a year in basic research to prevent it could be justified. The National Institutes of Health budget, devoted to medical research of all types, is about a quarter of that.”

4. Hundreds of Companies That Got Stimulus Aid Have Failed – “About 300 companies that received as much as half a billion dollars in pandemic-related government loans have filed for bankruptcy, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of government data and court filings. Many of the companies, which employ a total of about 23,400 workers, say the funds from the Paycheck Protection Program weren’t enough to keep them going as the coronavirus and lack of additional stimulus payments weighed on their businesses. The total number of companies that failed despite getting PPP loans is likely far higher. The Journal only analyzed the big borrowers from the program, which accounted for about half of the overall loans though only about 13.5% of the total participants. And many small businesses simply liquidate when they run out of cash rather than file for bankruptcy.

5. Ponzi Scheme Suspect Uses Underwater Scooter to Flee FBI – Who among us?