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US Economy Experiencing Slow Growth Confirmed by Non-farm Payroll, Manufacturing, and Retail Sales Data

The Core Retail Sales Report measures changes in the total value of sales at the retail level in the U.S., excluding automobiles. The report shows the rate of consumer spending. It functions as a pace indicator for the U.S. economy, how fast or how slow the growth of the economy is currently progressing. As we can see in the report, the previous reading was 1.0%, the forecasted reading 0.1%, and the actual reading came in at 0.0%. So, this is confirming that U.S. economic growth has slowed down dramatically or is slowly growing.

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Pre-recession Could be Current State of U.S. Economy, Emotionally!

Defining a recession as two consecutive quarters of negative GDP growth doesn’t tell the whole story of the effect human emotions has on the financial markets. Before there are any consecutive quarters of negative GDP growth, there is the impact of human emotions on the financial markets, which should be taken into consideration. So, by the time two quarters of consecutive GDP growth hits the headlines, investors’ emotions would’ve already nose-dived into depression, dragging down the economy with it. That scenario could be the vampire plaguing the current U.S. economy.

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US Federal Rate cut has come and gone, Now What?

The price of gold has certainly benefitted from the US-China trade war, hitting a six-year high of $1,510. When there are uncertainties in the US dollar and global economy, investors look for safe-haven asset classes to stash their cash. Gold is one of those safe-haven asset classes that investors turn to during times of trouble. In addition, the price of gold is inversely proportional to the price of the US dollar. This means that whenever the price of gold goes up, the price and value of the US dollar goes down. So, as currency traders who trade the USD against other currencies, we should all understand the relationship between the USD and AUX (Gold).

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SS&C GlobeOp Hedge Fund Performance Index and Capital Movement; IndexSS&C GlobeOp Hedge Fund Performance Index: February performance 1.24%; Capital Movement Index: March net flows advance 0.21%

Let your money work for you

The SS&C GlobeOp Hedge Fund Performance Index is an asset-weighted, independent monthly window on hedge fund performance. On the ninth business day of each month it provides a flash estimate of the gross aggregate performance of funds for which SS&C GlobeOp provides monthly administration services on the SS&C GlobeOp platform. Interim and final values, both gross and net, are provided in each of the two following months, respectively. Online data can be segmented by gross and net performance, and by time periods. The SS&C GlobeOp Hedge Fund Performance Index is transparent, consistent in data processing, and free from selection or survivorship bias. Its inception date is January 1, 2006.

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Willamette Valley Vineyards Posts a Profit for 2018

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Jim Bernau, Founder and President of the winery, said "We are pleased Income from Operations was up 15% for the year. Earnings are affected by the dividend cost as we raised the money needed for the planned winery near Dundee prior to construction. As we are able to deploy these development funds, we expect the projected earnings to more than offset the higher dividend costs."

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Horizon Technology Finance Provides Investment Portfolio Update Increases Portfolio Size with $24 Million in Loan Originations; Grows Committed Backlog to $47 Million

Where can I get business financing?

"During the third quarter, we experienced solid investment activity, increasing the size of our portfolio and expanding our committed backlog for the second consecutive quarter," said Gerald A. Michaud, President of Horizon. "Our success funding seven loans, totaling more than $24 million, and growing our committed backlog to $47 million underscores the strong demand for our venture debt products to growing life science and technology companies. We believe Horizon will continue to benefit from a robust pipeline of investment opportunities and is well positioned to deliver long-term, disciplined portfolio growth, while ensuring credit quality remains strong."

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Immune Design (IMDZ) Alert: Johnson Fistel Investigates Proposed Sale of Immune Design Corp.; Are Immune Design Shareholders Getting a Fair Deal?

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The investigation concerns whether the Immune Design board failed to satisfy its duties to the Company shareholders, including whether the board adequately pursued alternatives to the acquisition and whether the board obtained the best price possible for Immune Design shares of common stock. Nationally recognized Johnson Fistel is investigating whether the proposed deal represents adequate consideration, especially given that one Wall Street analyst has a $9.00 price target on the stock and the Company has approximately $100 million in cash and no long-term debt.

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Merck to Acquire Immune Design; Acquisition Bolsters Capabilities in Vaccine Development for Infectious Diseases and Cancer

Mergers and Acquisitions

“Scientists at Immune Design have established a unique portfolio of approaches to cancer immunization and adjuvant systems designed to enhance the ability of a vaccine to protect against infection, which could meaningfully improve vaccine development," said Dr. Roger M. Perlmutter, president, Merck Research Laboratories. “This acquisition builds upon Merck’s industry-leading programs that harness the power of the immune system to prevent and treat disease.”

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SEC Files Charges in Elaborate Microcap Stock Fraud

“As alleged in our complaint, Magna Group and its co-defendants used fake debt instruments to unlawfully obtain shares in microcap companies, which they then dumped on unsuspecting retail investors,” said Sanjay Wadhwa, Senior Associate Director of the SEC’s New York Regional Office. “This action demonstrates the resolve of the SEC in pursuing fraudsters who use elaborate financing schemes to engage in securities fraud.”

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Investor Alert and Bulletin From SEC Office of Investor Education and Advocacy

Know how to be a better investor. Did you know that active trading and some other very common investing behaviors actually can undermine investment performance? According to researchers, other common investing mistakes include focusing on past performance, favoring investments from your own country, region, state, or company, and holding on to losing investments too long and selling winning investments too soon.

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