Trump Floats Improbable Survival Scenarios as He Ponders His Future

first_imgIn a tweet on Thursday, Mr. Trump continued his attacks on his once loyal supporters, declaring that Fox News’s “daytime ratings have completely collapsed.”“Weekend daytime even WORSE,” he added. “Very sad to watch this happen, but they forgot what made them successful, what got them there. They forgot the Golden Goose. The biggest difference between the 2016 Election, and 2020, was @FoxNews!”Several Republicans expressed doubt on Thursday that Mr. Trump would ever be able to put together anything that could overtake Fox.And allies acknowledge that he could not do both a presidential campaign and create a news network at the same time, and they questioned whether he would keep up his animus toward Fox if it were to offer him a lucrative contributor deal once he is out of office.Some advisers had hoped that Mr. Trump would accept the state of the race by the end of this week, but a looming recount in Georgia may delay that. The president has told some advisers that if the race is certified for Mr. Biden, he will announce a 2024 campaign shortly afterward.The president’s goal for now is to delay certification of the election results, a process that has begun in some states. But his approach to lawsuits aimed at delaying that certification has been as scattered as his own thinking about the future. Advisers said his efforts were in keeping with one of his favorite pastimes: creating a controversy and watching to see how it plays out. By dominating the story of his exit from the White House, he hopes to keep his millions of supporters energized and engaged for whatever comes next.The president has insisted to aides that he really defeated Joseph R. Biden Jr. on Nov. 3, but it is unclear whether he actually believes it. And instead of conducting discreet requests for recounts, Mr. Trump has made a series of spurious claims, seizing on conspiracies fanned on the internet.The latest was on Thursday, when he falsely claimed on Twitter that Dominion voting machines switched hundreds of thousands of his votes to Mr. Biden, citing a report he had seen on the fringe network OANN, something even his supporters called ridiculous and a federal agency overseeing cybersecurity disavowed in a statement.- Advertisement – It was not a detailed conversation, or really a serious one, the people briefed on it said. Nor was it reflective of any obsessive desire of Mr. Trump’s to remain in the White House.“He knows it’s over,” one adviser said. But instead of conceding, they said, he is floating one improbable scenario after another for staying in office while he contemplates his uncertain post-presidency future. As a next step, Mr. Trump is talking seriously about announcing that he is planning to run again in 2024, aware that whether he actually does it or not, it will freeze an already-crowded field of possible Republican candidates. And, Republicans say, it will keep the wide support he showed even in defeat and could guarantee a lucrative book deal or speaking fees.In the meantime, Mr. Trump has spent his days toggling between his White House residence and the Oval Office, watching television coverage about the final weeks of his presidency. His mood is often bleak, advisers say, though he is not raising his voice in anger, despite the impression left by his tweets, which are often in capital letters.But the work of government has been reduced to something of a sideshow for the president. He has not made any public appearances except for a visit to Arlington National Cemetery on Veterans Day since an angry statement a week ago.And he has not spoken about the coronavirus pandemic or mentioned it on Twitter despite the staggering growth in positive cases and the number of West Wing aides and outside advisers who have been diagnosed with the virus in the past week.Several advisers have bluntly told Mr. Trump that the chances of changing the election’s outcome are almost nonexistent, including in a meeting with him on Saturday at the White House to which that the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, dispatched aides, even as he has generally backed Mr. Trump’s desire to keep fighting.While most Republicans have declined to publicly oppose the president, more have become vocal that the time has come, amid the growing pandemic, to allow a transition to take place.“Look, I’m worried about this virus. I’m not looking at what the merits of the case are,” said Gov. Mike DeWine, Republican of Ohio, about Mr. Trump’s lawsuits in an appearance on Thursday on CNN. “It would appear that Joe Biden is going to be the next president of the United States.” Rudolph W. Giuliani, Mr. Trump’s personal lawyer, has been a source of enormous frustration for Trump advisers. Advisers have tried to tell Mr. Trump that the fraud Mr. Giuliani is offering hope of proving simply does not exist.Mr. Trump is getting suggestions from an array of other lawyers, as well. They include Sidney Powell, the lawyer for his former national security adviser Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, who was at the Trump campaign headquarters over the weekend.Advisers have nudged the president to stop talking about “fraud” because that has legal implications that his team has not been able to back up. So Mr. Trump has taken to pronouncing the election “rigged,” one of his favorite words but one with dangerous implications in terms of how his own supporters view the election’s ultimate outcome. There is no grand strategy at play, according to interviews with a half-dozen advisers and people close to the president. Mr. Trump is simply trying to survive from one news cycle to the next, seeing how far he can push his case against his defeat and ensure the continued support of his Republican base.- Advertisement – Updated Nov. 12, 2020, 7:30 p.m. ETcenter_img A peaceful transition is not as much on Mr. Trump’s mind right now as settling scores both inside and outside the administration.White House advisers have sent warnings to any government employees who might be looking for other jobs, have placed loyalists in the upper ranks of the Pentagon, and have been open to calls for intelligence officials to declassify documents related to the investigation into a possible conspiracy between the Trump campaign in 2016 and Russian officials. At a meeting on Wednesday at the White House, President Trump had something he wanted to discuss with his advisers, many of whom have told him his chances of succeeding at changing the results of the 2020 election are thin as a reed.He then proceeded to press them on whether Republican legislatures could pick pro-Trump electors in a handful of key states and deliver him the electoral votes he needs to change the math and give him a second term, according to people briefed on the discussion.- Advertisement – And the president is considering firing the C.I.A. director, Gina Haspel, although some administration officials said he may not got through with it.The president has nursed a burning anger at Fox News for calling Arizona for Mr. Biden on election night, and has entertained suggestions from allies to start some kind of competing conservative-leaning news network, whether by trying to join forces with an existing property like OANN or Newsmax, or forming a digital network of his own, as Axios reported. Advisers say there may be additional lawsuits filed, but it is not entirely clear when. It also is not clear who is leading the legal efforts. Karl Rove, the architect of President George W. Bush’s presidency and an informal adviser to Mr. Trump, wrote in The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday that “closing out this election will be a hard but necessary step toward restoring some unity and political equilibrium.”He added that after Mr. Trump’s “days in court are over, the president should do his part to unite the country by leading a peaceful transition and letting grievances go.” – Advertisement –last_img read more

Liability-driven investment: The elephant in the room

first_imgAt every conference, there is an elephant in the room, a subject not directly addressed by speakers, but discussed between delegates over coffee, lunch and dinner. The risks inherent in liability-driven investing (LDI) are that subject at this year’s National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) Investment Conference.Speaking off record, one delegate, the trustee of a super mature defined benefit (DB) scheme, points out that, if interest rates rise by 100 basis points, the LDI programme he helped design would need to post more collateral in cash or Gilts. “Both areas drag on performance in a portfolio where we are already allocating more than I like to fixed income,” he says.Another delegate, also off record, wonders if LDI has distorted asset allocation out of reasonable form. “Should we have so much of our assets in bonds and an overlay that does not in absolute terms produce any returns for our members, or should we put more in equities?” he asks.The background to this is widely predicted rises in interest rates. Keynote speaker Roger Bootle, chairman of consultancy Capital Economics, predicts a rise by the end of next year. That this is of only 25bps, from 0.5% to 0.75%, is easy to lose sight of. The conventional wisdom is that a tightening of monetary supply must push up interest rates with a negative impact on Gilt and investment-grade corporate bonds, exactly those assets now held by UK pension funds as a key component of their LDI strategies. Events in the Ukraine, even the forthcoming Scottish independence referendum, have also reminded delegates that non-economic political and systemic risks lurk constantly just beyond the firelight, threatening to intrude without warning. “What would happen to our LDI programme if interest rates were forced up by say 200 or 300 basis points?” asks another delegate. “I am sure our consultants will have run those numbers, but I don’t recall them telling us the result.”Of course, no one is suggesting LDI is about to be superseded by a new set approach to managing interest and inflation rate risk. “But there may be some re-engineering on a scheme-specific basis,” concedes Gurjit Dehl, vice-president at Redington. “And we are looking to find alternatives to Gilts and investment-grade corporate bonds.”The market is rendering these too expensive for all but the best-funded pension schemes. Instead, there is a hunt for ‘new’ combinations of less liquid assets offering an illiquidity premium to hard-pressed trustees. Some of this is visible at conference events – private equity, farmland, direct lending, small-cap equities, emerging debt, infrastructure and more. We can expect these to be combined in asset portfolios designed to reduce the cost of LDI.Meanwhile, a debate is developing over the correlation between short and long-term interest rates. The price of LDI hedges is, after all, dependent on long-term rates. Short-term rates can rise sharply without affecting long-term ones, point out LDI providers. But many, not least Bootle, foresee a rise in long-term rates and a return of higher inflation rates, which will reduce the real cost of Gilt redemption. If this happens, the cost of LDI will rise, but, for many trustees, there is no alternative.last_img read more

BH Handballers won against Switzerland and qualified for Play Offs of the World Cup

first_imgThe National handball team of BiH qualified for play offs of the World Cup after defeating Switzerland tonight in Tuzla with the score 21:15.Both teams played great defenses in the first few minutes of the match, and our team scored its first goal in the 7th minute. BH handball players improved their game then and they achieved four goals of advantage until 17th minute of the match.Our team increased the advantage until break (11: 6) and was already looking forward to the play offs.The most efficient player in the ranks of the National team of BiH in the first period was Ovcina with four goals, while the first name in our team was definitely goalkeeper Buric with more than 60 % of defenses.Similar to the first half, the team of BiH scored its first goal in the 5th minute of the second half. The Swiss team improved their game and they even managed to reduce our advantage to just one goal of difference until 50th minute of the match.However, our handball players managed to achieve deserved victory thanks to fans and their cheering. The absolute hero of this victory of our team was Benjamin Buric, who recorded fantastic 20 defenses.The National handball team of BiH ended the competition in the qualifying group 6 on the first place with three wins and one defeat.To recall, our national team can play against the winners of the remaining five qualifying groups and ten worst teams from the current European Championship that is currently taking place in Croatia.(Source: N. K./ read more

Bears vs. Lions odds, prediction, betting trends for NFL Thanksgiving game

first_imgStat that mattersThe Lions have given up on average 58 yards receiving to running backs this season and on average 13 catches for 177 yards against wide receivers. They struggled plenty against Allen Robinson, Tarik Cohen and Taylor Gabriel in the first meeting. In this meeting, they will worry about Robinson, Cohen and Anthony Miller plenty with Gabriel concussed and no viable healthy tight end options.Bears vs. Lions predictionTrubisky tends to pick apart bad defenses and although there might be another slow start, he’ll get into a groove with Robinson, Cohen and Miller on short-to-intermediate routes as the Lions sell out to stop the run initially. Blough will play better than expected at home and target Golladay and Jones often. But in the end, he will face plenty more heat from Khalil Mack and the Bears’ defense to thwart the mild upset bid.Bears 24, Lions 17 How might the rematch in Week 13 play out in Ford Field?Here’s everything to know about betting on Bears vs. Lions in Week 13, including updated odds, trends and our expert’s prediction for the 2019 NFL Thanksgiving game.MORE: Get the latest NFL odds & betting advice at Sportsbook ReviewBears vs. Lions odds for Thanksgiving 2019Spread: Bears by 5.5Point total: 37Odds: Bears -118, Lions +108The Bears started as slight road favorites after edging the Giants last week, while the Lions are coming off a mild upset loss at the Redskins. The line jumped from Bears -2.5 when it was revealed Blough was starting instead of Driskel. The point total is tied to two struggling offenses that scored in the teens with different results in Week 12.Bears vs. Lions all-time seriesThe Bears will go for the season sweep to increase their 100-75-4 advantage over the Lions. They are trying to make it four straight victories after dropping 9 of the previous 10 meetings. This is a rematch of last year’s Thanksgiving game in Detroit, won by the Bears 23-16.Three trends to know— 66 percent of spread bettors like the Bears. 64 percent of moneyline bettors also like the Bears.— 69 percent of bettors like the game to go over its low point total, probably thinking the Bears, as limited as they have been, will be able to move the ball on the Lions’ defense.— The Bears are only 3-8 against the spread this season and 3 of their 11 games also have gone under.Three things to watchBlough gets the startBlough is a different type of QB from Driskel. He’s more of a traditional pocket passer with a bigger arm and he was acquired from the Browns because of his accuracy. He won’t give the Lions much as a runner, but he will take more chances throwing downfield, which could either lead to big plays for receivers or big interceptions for the Bears.Trubisky and his confidenceTrubisky did throw two more interceptions against the Giants, but he made the big pass plays downfield when it counted to give the Bears a win. He seemed a lot more comfortable both hanging in there in the pocket and throwing and also more decisive with his running. If he plays like that again against another bad defense, Chicago should be golden.Golladay on the holidayThe Bears have a very good secondary, but both Golladay (3 catches, 57 yards, TD) and Marvin Jones (5 catches, 77 yards) did good damage with Driskel in Chicago. The Lions will go back to struggling running the ball, so they need their talented outside wideouts to come through, led by the 6-4, 214-pound Golladay, a Chicago native. When the Bears (5-6) travel to face the Lions (3-7-1) to open the NFL Thanksgiving game schedule on Thursday (12:30 p.m. ET, Fox), the NFC North rivals will be playing mostly for pride with no playoff berth in sight for either team in 2019.Chicago will keep starting Mitchell Trubisky at quarterback, while Detroit, with Matthew Stafford still injured, will have undrafted rookie David Blough start in the second game of the season series, repalcing backup Jeff Driskel, who started in the first but is out with a hamstring injury. When the teams met in Solider Field in Week 10, the Bears overcame a slow start to win 20-13.last_img read more