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bank, finance and leasing industries


Friday, May 15, 2020

Today's Leasing News Headlines

A Posting to Our Employees Today
    Chris Enbom, CLFP
The Vital Importance of Social Distancing – Chart
    How Reduction in Social Contact Can Reduce Spread
New Hires in the Leasing Business
    and Related Industries
DBRS Morningstar Places 10 Amur Equipment Finance
    Securities Under Review with Negative Implications
Chesswood Posts $19.8 Million Loss 1st Quarter
    Reports on Pawnee/Staffing and Expenses
4 Reasons Top Tech Told Employees
  to Work from Home Until 2021
    By Derek Loosvelt
Covid-19 Cases per Million Inhabitants Location Chart
    Confirmed COVID-19 Case per Million Population Size
Should I Stay or Should I Go? Chart
    Percent of Respondents to Avoid after Restrictions Lift
Tabu (1931), Gertrud (1964), 7 Women(1966)
  L'Argent (1983), Eyes Wide Shut (1999)
   Five Great Director's Final Films/Fernando Croce
Labrador Retriever
    Chicago, Illinois  Adopt-a-Dog
News Briefs---
Weekly jobless claims total 2.981 million,
   bringing coronavirus tally to 36.5 million
Video shows how quickly coronavirus
    can spread at a buffet restaurant
Tesla employees who fear coronavirus
   could likely keep claiming unemployment
Trump's rebuke of Fauci encapsulates rejection
   of science in virus fight
Multimillion-dollar food bank delivery contracts
   go to firms with little experience
This Is Huge: Twitter CEO Says
   Employees Can Work From Home ‘Forever’
Google Will Let Employees Work From Home
   Until The End Of 2020
Broadway Theaters Will Remain Dark
   At Least Through Labor Day
You May have Missed---
  UK finance brokers’ deals collapse in March
    as small businesses confidence wanes

Broker/Funder/Industry Lists | Features (wrilter's columns)
Top Ten Stories Chosen by Readers | Top Stories last six months (Be Careful of Doing Business)
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  Sports Brief----
   California Nuts Brief---
    "Gimme that Wine"
     This Day in History
       Daily Puzzle
         Weather, USA or specific area
          Traffic Live----

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release,” it was not written by Leasing News nor has the information been verified. The source noted. When an article is signed by the writer, it is considered a “byline.” It reflects the opinion and research of the writer.

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A Posting to Our Employees Today
Chris Enbom, CLFP

CEO at AP Equipment Financing and Work Truck Direct
Bend, Oregon

“We could get back to the office faster if there was quicker testing and more testing available and I do think testing is the key to us being able to work together again.

“Just this morning an employee reported not feeling well, talked to a doctor, and was given a test. It will take 5 to 7 days to get results back.

“In the meantime, we have 2 of 3 mechanics who have elderly parents living at home and/or underlying health issues. They don’t want to be at work. We/they do not know if others are infected as well, they are worried, and tests are only available for people showing symptoms.

“So….we are now shut down for a week and possibly much more due to one person being tested.

“It does not matter if you are young and healthy and not worried about it. If another co-worker lives with people at risk it is a big problem. If you live with two healthy 80-year–olds, there is a 20% possibility of one of them dying (10% each) and who is going to take that chance with their parents?

“We will follow government mandates and possibly be even more conservative. We will not allow anyone (except the ONE person allowed to work there) in the office until we are very sure we can operate without risking anyone.”


In order to stem the spread of the coronavirus, social interactions around the world are being restricted. This infographic, based on calculations by Robert A. J. Signer, Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of California San Diego, shows how this so-called social distancing can reduce the spread of the virus.

With no changes to social behavior, one infected person will on average pass the virus to 2.5 people within five days. After 30 days, the figure would rise to a devastating 406 new infections. The number can be significantly reduced though by engaging in less social contact. With a 50 percent reduction, the number of new infections caused by the average person after 30 days is just 15 people. A 75 percent change would result in an even lower 2.5 new cases - greatly reducing the burden on health services and, if followed by everybody, allowing a country to 'flatten the curve' of new infections.

By Martin Armstrong, Statista




New Hires in the Leasing Business
and Related Industries


Brent Christiansen was hired as Regional Sales Manager, Ascentium Capital, Dover, New Hampshire. Previously, he was at Beacon Funding, starting November, 2017, as Inside Sales Representative; promoted November, 2018, Senior Financial Consultant.  Previously, he was Client Advisor, TULLEY BMW, Tulley Automotive Group (August, 2106 - June, 2017); Information Security Consultant, Ezentria (January, 2012 - August, 2016); Pro Shop Assistant (PGA Golf Management internship), Woodland Golf Club (March, 2014 - October, 2015); Outside Operations & Pace of Play (PGA Golf Management (internship), Candia Woods Golf Links (May, 2013 - August, 2013). Certifications: Certified Lead Pen Test Professional, PECB. Issued July, 2015.  Volunteer, Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Re-Member (December, 2007 - January, 2008).  Education: Southern New Hampshire University, Bachelors of Business Studies in Business Administration, Business Administration and Management, General (2016 - 2017).  Methodist University, Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), Business Administration with Concentration in PGA Golf Management, Senior. (2011 - 2015).  Activities and Societies: PGM Golf Management Program. Nashua High School North. High School Diploma, Business Administration and Management, General (2007 -2011). Activities and Societies, Adventure Club, Varsity Golf, Varsity Lacrosse  and Varsity Wrestling.

Kimberly English was hired as Equipment Finance Specialist, VP, Sales, Ascentium Capital, Kingwood, Texas.  She is located in Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson, South Carolina Area.  Previously, she was Managing Director, Vice President, Equipment Finance, Sterling National Bank (April, 2018 - May, 2020); Equipment Finance/Vice President, Territory Manager, Wells Fargo (2016 - 2018).  She began her career at LeasePlan USA, starting in 2000, rising to Regional Vice President, Sales & Client Relations; promoted 2013, Vice President, Sales, Truck Division. Volunteer: Food Service & Preparation, Soup Kitchen, Spartanburg, South Carolina (December, 2006 - December, 2013).  Education: Xavier University, Business Administration, Business and Accounting.  College of Continuing Education, Business.  Greenhills High School.

Brian Wunsch was hired as Vice President of Sales and Vendor Relationships, Byline Financial Group, Chicago, Illinois. Previously, he was National Sales Manager/Material Handling, Wells Fargo Equipment Finance (January, 2002 - May, 2020).


DBRS Morningstar Places 10 Amur Equipment Finance
Securities Under Review with Negative Implications

DBRS Morningstar issued a press release on 10 Amur Equipment Finance Securities. The actual press release follows. It should be first explained that equipment finance companies originate leases/loans and borrow against those loans along with equity capital. 

After growing to a certain size, they then securitize those loans/leases into an special purpose vehicle (SPV) that is bankruptcy remote. The SPV then issues bonds tranched by seniority. Rating agencies, like DBRS, rate those bonds. Amur did a securitization in 2018 and another in 2019. Since that last one, they have been originating and funding on balance sheet with a credit facility from Key Bank and had gone to market for the latest securitization in late February. Unfortunately, they missed the window due to Covid-9.

Given the massive stress of small business and equipment loans, it makes perfect sense for the rating agency to place the bonds on credit review for negative implications.  There is nothing about which to comment by Amur and this does not indicate anything other than the obvious that all bonds are going to be subject to potential ratings downgrades.  Look for other companies to be placed under review as well as will almost everybody else's like Pawnee, Ascentium, Balboa, etc. 

This will not be good for independents. Leasing News is advised, “there is risk that the securitizations go into rapid amortization event as there is a cumulative net loss trigger and I would not be surprised if they bump up against it.”

Note: A call into Amur Equipment Finance for a comment was not returned. 

DBRS Morningstar Press Release



Chesswood Posts $19.8 Million Loss 1st Quarter
Reports on Pawnee/Staffing and Expenses

The press release notes:

New Business Funding
“Pawnee and Tandem temporarily halted new originations late in April while we are in the process of working with the revolving credit facility syndicate for amendments which will better address COVID-19 related experience and expectations. Once completed, we expect to resume funding new transactions once again in the U.S. (at the more modest levels contemplated in Chesswood’s annual MD&A). In Canada, Blue Chip continues to fund new business under its stricter COVID-19 credit guidelines.
“We have already concluded COVID-19-related formal amendments arrangements with some of our lenders, and expect to finalize amendments with the remaining lenders in the next few weeks, if not earlier.”
Staffing and Expenses
“Our recently announced decreases in staffing and reductions of management salaries by 20% was supplemented recently by a small number of additional layoffs and furloughs, unfortunately. Our personnel expenses have therefore been reduced by approximately 30% in addition to the suspension of directors’ fees.
“There remains uncertainty as to the ultimate duration and severity of the COVID-19 pandemic, and how quickly and on what scale U.S. and Canadian businesses will be reopened. Chesswood’s management and directors look forward to the rehiring of as many laid-off staff as possible and a return to funding new business in the U.S. as soon as possible.”

The press release states:

“Through May 1st, Pawnee has provided deferrals to 24% of its customer base, with almost 90% of those customers receiving two-month deferrals. BlueChip has provided deferrals to 14% of its customer base and, while it has offered up to three-months of deferral, more than 95% of its customers that took a deferral, are making regular, reduced payments.
“As businesses begin to re-open in late May and our customers’ initial deferral periods begin to reach their end, we will be working with these customers to get them back on to their payment schedules as quickly as possible. Discussions with customers take place on a one-on-one basis. Our long history in collections has taught us that this approach maximizes outcomes for all. We do expect to incur higher than normal charge offs in the coming months, as businesses re-open, due to the effects of the COVID-19 shutdown.
“More than three-quarters of our customers did NOT seek payment accommodations/deferrals. “

Barry Shafran, Chesswood’s President and CEO, has not returned telephone calls from Leasing News.

Full Press Release:


4 Reasons Top Tech Told Employees
to Work from Home Until 2021
By Derek Loosvelt

As the global pandemic continues, a growing number of top tech firms are telling their employees to prepare to continue to work remotely for the next several months. At least one firm has told employees they can work from home indefinitely.

Slack told employees to continue to work remotely through September. Microsoft told employees to continue to work remotely through October. FacebookGoogle, and Zillow told employees to continue to work remotely through December. And today, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey unveiled a new policy allowing certain employees to work remotely forever.

And it's not just tech firms telling employees to hunker down at home for the next few months, seasons, or years. Financial services firms like Capital One and Nationwide have also announced extended remote-work policies. Capital One's employees will be remote through at least Labor Day, and Nationwide has announced several office closings, permanently transforming thousands of its in-office employees into fully remote ones.

As for why these firms have extended remote-work policies far into the future, even as some states attempt to reopen amid the Covid-19 outbreak, a recent New York Times piece points to four specific reasons.

1. "No one is sure how the coronavirus pandemic will evolve."
If there's one thing you can be sure of when it comes to Covid-19, it’s that no one's sure what's going to happen. Will the summer months stall its spread? Will the relaxing of social distancing measures cause a second deadly wave? Will there be a vaccine in eight months? Eighteen? Will the virus mutate? Will it increasingly affect children?

No one knows the answers to these questions and, if they tell you they do, they're not telling you the truth.

As a result, companies are increasingly realizing we're living in incredibly uncertain times with facts and figures changing daily. Consider that, every day, there are still at least 20,000 new Covid-19 cases in the U.S. and total U.S. cases have surpassed 1.2 million. Thus, it's no surprise that many companies are playing it literally safe. doing as much as they can to keep their employees and others in their communities safe, even if it means the loss of business, or the appearance of loss business, in the short term.

2. "It is a pragmatic approach that helps workers with young children plan for a difficult summer and gives management time to reconfigure open-office plans into something safer."
Across the country, schools are closed. In most cases, they're closed for the rest of the school year, requiring many parents (who are trying to hold down full-time jobs) to help their children complete their remote-learning assignments. This is no easy task for parents (full-time employees or not) and no easy task for children, who are having to learn remotely or the first time in their lives while keeping their distance from friends, teachers, and extended family members.

There's also the very good possibility that certain schools won't be able to reopen in the fall. Can you imagine thousands of small classrooms across the country, 30 kids in each, in the middle of a global pandemic? Right. So, certain companies are getting the message that school closings might continue for some time and are buying time to rethink and reconfigure their employees' work schedules, not to mention their workplaces which will need to look a lot different for anyone to return safely.

3. "Working from home is working out well."
What some companies might not want to admit but others are embracing is remote work is working well, even better than well. According to the chief people officer of San Francisco-based Docusign, "Working from home is a great thing for the company and for employees who don’t want to get back in cars and commute for two hours. That’s lost productivity. I see it happening way more often in the future.”

Of course, saving time is one thing, saving lives is quite another. Consider that last week, for the first time in its 116-year history, the New York City subway system began shutting down each night (between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m.) for a daily deep clean. This has commuters wondering: Does that mean the subway will be cleaner and safer? Or has it just reached such a low point in cleanliness and safety that it requires such a thorough anti-virus cleaning?

In any case, one positive of the Covid-19 pandemic is that remote work has proven to be sustainable—for employers and employees alike. Employers stand to benefit from lower costs and increased employee satisfaction, engagement, and productivity, while employees stand to benefit from a better work/life balance. Of course, this won't be true of every employer and employee in every industry, but "a broad shift could have major implications for traffic congestion, office culture and corporate profits. Smaller firms could draw on a much larger pool of potential workers who live beyond the radius of headquarters. And for some, it would erase the boundary between work and home."

4. "Even if employees who are working remotely are less productive, companies can end up with a higher return."
A common management complaint of the remote-work arrangement is it decreases employee productivity. To that, Brian Kropp, a vice president at consulting firm Gartner, says to consider that “even if employees who are working remotely are 5 percent less productive, companies can save 20 percent on real estate and end up with a higher return.”

Another thing to consider is the case of Seattle-based real estate giant Zillow. Prior to the pandemic, 2 percent of Zillow's workforce worked remotely full time and another 4 percent worked remotely part time. That is, the firm, more or less, frowned upon remote work. But now, all 5,000 of its employees work remotely, will continue to do so until 2021—and the firm has discovered that remote work works surprisingly well.

According to Zillow Chief People Officer Dan Spaulding, the company is "not seeing any discernible drop in productivity ... Our bias against working from home has been completely exploded.”

A final note
No matter when U.S. governors decide its okay for their respective states to reopen, a question inevitably facing all companies with respect to when to reopen their offices is this: Is our workplace and the commutes to our workplace safe (enough) for employees to return?

Likewise, irrespective of what their employers decide, employees will inevitably face the question: Is my workplace and commute safe (enough) for me to return?

It remains to be seen what the answers to these questions will be in one month, three months, and six months out. But, at the moment, the answer to the follow question seems pretty clear: How safe can employers and employees feel about their workplaces reopening when Covid-19 has penetrated what is arguably the safest, most secure, most tightly controlled workplace in the U.S., if not the world?


Although the situation is fluid, the countries worst hit by the COVID-19 pandemic are by now well known. How does this look though when accounting for population size?

Using Johns Hopkins University and World Bank figures, this infographic takes countries with a population of at least four million and over five thousand confirmed cases and calculates the rate per one million inhabitants. Using this measure, Spain has the most severe rate with 4,895 cases, followed by Ireland and Belgium. The United States, with over one million total cases, has 4,251 per million people.

Of course, the number of actual cases in a country is going to be higher than official figures show, with testing rates also varying dramatically. As with all figures relating to confirmed cases, they should be treated with caution.

By Martin Armstrong, Statista


While officials in the United States and internationally are under increased pressure to reopen the economy, health experts are warning that a rushed exit from lockdowns could foster a second wave of infections and torpedo much of the progress made so far in slowing down the spread of COVID-19.



Watch at Home
By Fernando F. Croce

A few weeks ago we offered recommendations on some of the best first features. Going the other way, here are five great final films, when great directors crystallized their obsessions and themes into remarkable swansongs.

Tabu (F.W. Murnau, 1931): Brilliant German director F.W. Murnau (“Nosferatu”) traveled to the South Seas to film this beautiful tragedy, which blends ethnographic elements with a tangible sense of implacable fate. Set in the island of Bora Bora, it follows the doomed romance between Reri (Anne Chevalier) and her beloved Matahi, who are forbidden to see each other after Reri is chosen as a sacred maiden and not permitted to see men. When the couple flaunts island law and escapes together, the two lovers find their own private idyll. With an aged emissary named Hitu on their trail, however, it’s only a matter of time before reality invades their paradise. Originally intended as a collaboration with documentary pioneer Robert J. Flaherty, the film is the perfect coda for Murnau’s short but magnificent career.

Gertrud (Carl Theodor Dreyer, 1964): From the very beginning, Danish master Carl Theodor Dreyer (“The Passion of Joan of Arc”) was obsessed with the emotions of women in a patriarchal society. That obsession reached its purified apex in this meditative study of aging and pride, a film that glows with concentrated emotion. Living amid artists, Gertrud (Nina Pens Rode) has an unique belief in romanticism that is often at odds with the real world. Determined to pursue her dreams, she puts her relationships to the test by mixing desire and spirituality. Her rich husband (Bendt Rothe), a concert pianist (Baard Owe) and an old lover (Ebbe Rode) are the men who ultimately fall short of Gertrud’s ideals. At once classical and experimental, austere yet exhilarating, Dreyer’s film is an unforgettable experience. With subtitles.

7 Women (John Ford, 1966): Best known for classic Westerns like “Stagecoach” and “The Searchers,” John Ford had a career that encompassed five decades and many different genres and moods. His swansong was this remarkable drama set in 1930s China, focusing on a group of female missionaries besieged by forces from within and from without. Authority in the group is divided between two very different but equally strong women, the strict Miss Andrews (Margaret Leighton) and the earthy Dr. Cartwright (Anne Bancroft). When the mission is marauded by a gang of vicious Mongolian bandits, they need all their unity and courage to face the ultimate challenge. Largely dismissed in its original release, the film has over time been appreciated for its cinematic power, excellent cast, and distillation of Ford’s career-long concerns with community.

L’Argent (Robert Bresson, 1983): One of the medium’s most distinguished and demanding masters, French filmmaker Robert Bresson served up a most withering farewell with this indelible drama, which magnificently crystallizes themes and styles he’d been working on for decades. Working from the Biblical verse that “money is the root of all evil,” the film chronicles the disturbing spirals that result from monetary ends. The main character is a delivery man named Yon (Christian Patey), whose life takes a sharp turn when he’s given counterfeit bills. After losing his job, he continues to try to support his family and becomes involved with increasingly shady characters, leading to a shatteringly tragic conclusion. With his trademark use of nonprofessional actors and minimalistic storytelling, this is a masterpiece that gazes pitilessly into both cruelty and grace. With subtitles.

Eyes Wide Shut (Stanley Kubrick, 1999): Legendary director Stanley Kubrick (“2001: A Space Odyssey”) ended a career full of audacious projects with this provocative drama, which strangely enough plays at times like a Freudian nightmare version of “It’s a Wonderful Life.” Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman star as William and Alice Harford, a wealthy New York couple whose stable life increasingly gives off hints of unsettled obsession. When a confession by Alice sends him on a furious stroll through the frigid streets, William embarks on a dark journey into the city’s secret corners. What follows is a twisty tour of mystery and discovery that will change the way they see things forever. With his trademark complex camera and sardonic humor, Kubrick takes a piercing look at human desire that doubles as an unlikely Christmas story.



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News Briefs----

Weekly jobless claims total 2.981 million,
   bringing coronavirus tally to 36.5 million

Video shows how quickly coronavirus
    can spread at a restaurant

Tesla employees who fear coronavirus
   could likely keep claiming unemployment

Trump's rebuke of Fauci encapsulates rejection
   of science in virus fight

Multimillion-dollar food bank delivery contracts
   go to firms with little experience

This Is Huge: Twitter CEO Says
  Employees Can Work From Home ‘Forever’

Google Will Let Employees Work From Home
   Until The End Of 2020

Broadway Theaters Will Remain Dark
   At Least Through Labor Day


You May Have Missed---

UK finance brokers’ deals collapse in March
   as small businesses confidence wanes


Sports Briefs---

NFL's Top Quarterback and Wide Receiver Duos for 2020

Raiders’ coach Jon Gruden talks coaching
   ‘virtual’ football and more

Denver Broncos' Von Miller details 'frightening'
 coronavirus fight: 'My lungs were constricting'

49ers preparing for training camp outside California


California Nuts Briefs---

First to close and last to open? California takes
   'appropriately cautious' path in combating coronavirus

Billions in cuts proposed as California revenue plunges

Sacramento restaurants will be allowed
  to expand outdoor dining into sidewalks, some streets

New details revealed about Santa Cruz surfer attacked by shark

Monterey Jazz Festival canceled
   for 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic



“Gimme that Wine”

Wine Institute Issues Protocols for Tasting Room Reopenings

Provence's Chateau Base Sold to Bordeaux;s Casteja Familly

Free Wine App

Wine Prices by vintage

US/International Wine Events

Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page


This Day in History

     1602 - Captain Bartholomew Gosnold, who left Falmouth, England on March 26, 1602, landed on the southern Maine coast near what is now Cape Porpoise. He became the first Englishman to explore what is now the United States. He anchored his ship at what is now New Bedford, Massachusetts. He named Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, and other landmarks.
    1672 – The first copyright law was enacted by Massachusetts.
    1755 – Laredo, TX was established by Spaniards.
    1776 - The Virginia Convention instructed its Continental Congress delegation to propose a resolution of independence from Great Britain, paving the way for the US Declaration of Independence.
    1817 - The first private mental health hospital in the United States, the Asylum for the Relief of Persons Deprived of the Use of Their Reason, opened in Philadelphia.  It is now Friends Hospital.
    1850 - The Bloody Island Massacre occurred in Lake County, CA, in which a large number of Pomo Indians in Lake County are slaughtered by a regiment of the United States Cavalry, led by Nathaniel Lyon.
    1856 - Birthday of Lyman Frank Baum (d. 1919) in Chittenango, NY. American newspaperman who wrote “The Wizard of Oz,” originally as a political polemic, he wrote many other books for children, including more than a dozen about Oz.
    1856 - The Vigilance Committee was formed to clean-up San Francisco.  (Lower half of )
    1857 – Birthday of Williamina Paton Stevens Fleming (d. 1911), Scottish-born U.S. astronomer who discovered white dwarf stars. She developed the Draper Catalogue of Stellar Spectra and classified more than 10,000 stars. She identified 222 variable stars, discovered 10 novae, and 94 Wolf-Rayet stars. After emigrating to the U.S., her husband abandoned her when she was pregnant. She got a job as a maid in the home of the director of the Harvard Observatory who, angry at his men for their sloppy work, hired her to show them up at the observatory.  She was the first American woman elected to the Royal Astronomical Society in 1906.
    1862 - The first enclosed baseball park was the Union Grounds, Brooklyn, which opened on May 15, 1862, on a site at Lee Avenue and Rutledge Street that had been formerly used as a skating rink.
    1863 - American author Annie Fellows Johnston’s (d. 1931) birthday in McCutchanville, IN.  Her “Little Colonel” series of more than 50 novels and sold more than a million books. She didn't get a chance to write until her husband died.
    1864 - Students from the Virginia Military Institute fought alongside the Confederate Army to force the Union Army out of the Shenandoah Valley in the Battle of New Market.
    1869 - This is quite a collector's item today, the first stamp depicting the American flag, the 30-cent blue and carmine stamp. It depicted an eagle with outstretched wings, facing to the left, resting on a shield with flags grouped on either side.
    1869 - In New York, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton formed the National Woman Suffrage Association.
    1872 - Julia Ward Howe declares the first Mother's Day as an anti-war holiday.
    1885 – The first forest reserve by a state prohibited the sale of state lands in certain counties in the Adirondack Mountains. It was designated as a state park, where logging and other commercial forms of exploitation were prohibited.
    1890 - Birthday of Katherine Anne Porter (d. 1980) at Indian Creek, TX. American prose writer.  Her one long novel, “Ship of Fools” (1962) is considered by some to be one of the greatest allegorical works in English. She won the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award in 1965 for Collected Short Stories.
    1901 - Birthday of clarinet player Edmond Hall (d. 1967), Reserve, LA.,,440188,00.html?
    1901 - Dorothy Hansine Andersen (d. 1963) was born in Asheville, NC. American pathologist and pediatrician who, in 1938, identified the disease cystic fibrosis and later developed a simplified diagnosis. Graduating from Johns Hopkins Medical School, she was unable to get a residency in surgery. After recognizing CF in autopsied baby hearts, her prestige and responsibilities grew, but she was continually maligned.  There were always efforts afoot to get rid of that troublesome woman - a cigarette was usually hanging from the corner of her mouth (she died of lung cancer),  her hair was always a mess,  and because she did "unladylike" things like rebuilding her cabin getaway with her own hands, as well as not being properly deferential. She perfected a course on open heart surgery and conducted seminars throughout the country. She had been orphaned at 19 without a single close relative.
    1902 – Birthday of Richard J. Daley, former mayor of Chicago, in Chicago. Died Dec 20, 1976—the last of the “Boss of the City.”
    1905 – Las Vegas was founded when 110 acres, in what later would become downtown, are auctioned off.  Seems logical!
    1905 – Abraham Zapruder, of the Kennedy assassination film, was born in Russia.  He died in 1970.
    1906 - Birthday of guitarist Rev. Johnny “Uncle” Williams (d. 2006), Alexandria, LA.
    1911 - The Supreme Court declared Standard Oil to be an "unreasonable" monopoly under the Sherman Antitrust Act and ordered the company to be broken up.  John D. Rockefeller entered the oil industry in the 1860s and, in 1870 founded Standard Oil with some other business partners. Rockefeller expanded Standard Oil by buying its competitors and using its size to receive benefits not available to smaller companies, like, for example, discount rates from railroads.  In 1882, Mr. Rockefeller joined with his partners to create the Standard Oil Trust, which controlled a large number of companies that allowed Standard to control refining, distribution, marketing and other aspects of the oil industry. Standard eventually gained control of nearly 90 percent of the country’s oil production. Standard’s domination of the oil industry came under criticism from both the public and the government. In 1890, Congress passed the Sherman Antitrust Act to restrain the power of trusts, banning “every contract, combination in the form of trust or otherwise, or conspiracy, in restraint of trade or commerce.” Standard lost a Sherman-related lawsuit in Ohio in 1892 but it was later able to incorporate in New Jersey as a holding company.  In the early 1900s, after Mr. Rockefeller had retired from Standard, journalist Ida Tarbell published a series of articles in McClure’s magazine. The series portrayed Mr. Rockefeller and Standard Oil as ruthless and immoral, and the articles contributed to public outrage against Standard.  The Department of Justice filed a federal antitrust lawsuit against Standard in 1909, contending that the company restrained trade through its preferential deals with railroads, its control of pipelines and by engaging in unfair practices like price-cutting to drive smaller competitors out of business. The Supreme Court ruled against Standard “on the ground that it is a combination in unreasonable restraint of inter-State commerce,” thus definitely reading the word ‘unreasonable’ into the law. The ruling, that only “unreasonable” restraint of trade constitutes a monopoly, was received by antitrust advocates as a narrow decision that favored the trusts. The court’s decision forced Standard to break into 34 independent companies spread across the country and abroad. Many of these companies have since split, folded or merged; today, the primary descendants of Standard include ExxonMobil, Chevron and ConocoPhillips.  There many similarities between the Standard Oil decision and that years later involving the Supreme Court order directing the breakup of AT&T.
    1911 - Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Indiana University, incorporated
    1912 - Ty Cobb rushed into the stands at a heckler in New York's Polo Grounds at a New York Highlander game and was suspended.  His teammates, though not fond of Cobb, went on strike to protest the suspension and the lack of protection of players from abusive fans, before the May 18 game in Philadelphia.  For that one game, Detroit fielded a replacement team made up of hastily recruited college and sandlot players plus two Tiger coaches and lost, 24–2, thereby setting some of Major League Baseball's modern-era (post-1900) negative records, notably the 26 hits in a nine-inning game allowed by Allan Travers, who pitched one of the sport's most unlikely complete games.  The strike ended when Cobb urged his teammates to return to the field. According to him, this incident led to the formation of a players' union, the "Ballplayers' Fraternity" (formally, the Fraternity of Professional Baseball Players of America), an early version of what is now called the Major League Baseball Players Association, which garnered some concessions from the owners.
    1915 – For those of a certain age who took economics in college…Paul Samuelson (d. 2009) was born in Gary, IN.  He published the best-selling economics textbook of all time: “Economics: An Introductory Analysis”, first published in 1948.  It was the second American textbook to explain the principles of Keynesian economics and how to think about economics, and the first one to be successful.  It is now in its 19th edition, having sold nearly 4 million copies in 40 languages.  Samuelson was the first American to win the Nobel Prize in Economic Studies. The Swedish Royal Academies stated, when awarding the prize, that he "has done more than any other contemporary economist to raise the level of scientific analysis in economic theory."  Economic historian Randall E. Parker calls him the "Father of Modern Economics" and The New York Times considered him to be the "foremost academic economist of the 20th century."  
    1918 - Country crooner Richard Edward "Eddy" Arnold (d. 2008) was born on a farm near Henderson, Tennessee.  Arnold is said to have sold more records than any other country artist - about 60 million - and he has done so by appealing to people who normally wouldn't even think of buying a country record.   His big break came in the early 1940's when he joined Pee Wee King's Golden West Cowboys. That gave him exposure on the Grand Ole Opry, and in 1944, he signed a contract with RCA Victor. Arnold had his first million-seller, "I'll Hold You in My Heart," in 1947, soon followed by others such as "Bouquet of Roses," "Anytime," and "Cattle Call." Eddy Arnold was still topping the country charts in the 1960's with such hits as "What's He Doing in My World" and "Make the World Go Away."
    1918 – “Dr. No”, Joseph Wiseman, was born in Montreal.  He died in 2009.
    1926 - The New York Rangers became the newest franchise to be awarded by the National Hockey League. Two years later, the Rangers won their first Stanley Cup.
    1928 - Birthday of trumpet player Joe Gordon, Boston, MA.  Died Nov 4, 1963 in Santa Monica, Ca.
    1928 – Mickey Mouse first appeared, in the cartoon “PlaneCrazy.”
    1930 - Ellen Church became the first airline stewardess (today's flight attendant), flying on a United Airlines flight from San Francisco to Cheyenne, WY.
    1931 - If we only had video then to record the famous time at Beta Theta Pi House, Yale, which brought the Dorsey Brothers Orchestra featuring both Bix Biederbecke and Bunny Berrigan on trumpet.
    1934 - Department of Justice offered $25,000 reward for Public Enemy #1, John Dillinger, dead or alive.
    1937 – Trinidad “Trini” Lopez III was born Dallas.  His debut live album, “Trini Lopez at PJ’s” (R/RS 6093), was released in 1963. The album included a version of “If I Had a Hammer," which reached #1 in 36 countries (No. 3 in the United States) and was a radio favorite for many years. It sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc.
    1937 - Automation was taking the U.S. by storm as the internet was doing the turn of this century. Foodomat and Automat restaurants were the rage, including the first Keedoozle store that opened this day in Memphis, Tennessee. Clarence Saunders was the president. Sample merchandise was displayed behind rows of tiny glass windows. The customer made purchases by inserting a noticed rod into a keyhole beside the items desired.   The mechanism automatically recorded the selections. The merchandise was automatically collected and wrapped when the insertion of the key in a final slot released the contents to a conveyor for wrapping. Keedoozle is a coined word for “Key-does-all.” He is best known for his first self-service stores: Piggly Wiggly. He changed the way people purchased things at stores. He died in 1953 working on the first “Foodelectric” store. It is not known how he chose the name Piggly Wiggly.
    1937 - Madeleine Albright’s birthday in Czechoslovakia, the first female U.S. Secretary of State. When President Bill Clinton first appointed her as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations in 1992, he made it a full cabinet post to show his high regard for Albright. It was also a signal that she would be an important part of his administration since she sat in on the major foreign affairs meetings. When Clinton's first secretary of state resigned, Albright was promptly moved up. Clinton and Albright go way back to when she held weekly political discussions at her home when she was with Georgetown University (where Clinton studied). A noted expert in foreign affairs, she was one of the first to advocate new relationships with the Soviet Union and Mikhail Gorbachev which led to the fall of the Iron Curtain. She also argued that economic sanctions would force Iraq to withdraw from Kuwait and she opposed the Gulf War. Albright speaks Czech, French, Polish, and Russian as well as English. She is the divorced mother of three daughters and because of the traditional/fearful secrecy - her father was exiled from his homeland - she did not find out she was part Jewish until she was at the U.N.
    1938 - Birthday of singer Lenny Welch, born in NYC and raised in Asbury Park, NJ.  His biggest hit, “Since I Fell for You”, reached number 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1963.  His other hits included "Ebb Tide" in 1964, and he recorded the first vocal version of "A Taste of Honey" in 1962.
    1940 - Nylon hose went on sale at stores throughout the country. Competing producers bought their nylon yarn from E.I. duPont de Nemours. W. H. Carothers of duPont developed nylon, called "Polymer 66" in 1935. It was the first totally man-made fiber and over time, substituted for other materials and came to have wide-spread application.
    1940 - Donald Arvid Nelson, basketball coach and former player, born Muskegon, MI.  He was drafted 19th overall by the NBA Chicago Zephyrs, and was acquired by the LA Lakers in 1963. After two years with the Lakers, he was signed by the Boston Celtics.  In his first season with Boston, Nelson helped the Celtics to the 1966 NBA title as one of their role players. Four more championships with Boston followed in 1968, 1969, 1974, and 1976.   From 1976-2010 he coached several teams on the way to first place on the all-time NBA wins list with 1,333 wins.  His all-time record is 1,335–1,063 (.557).  He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2012.
    1940 – With $5,000 in capital, the McDonald brothers, Richard James and Maurice James McDonald, opened their first restaurant, as a drive-in barbeque restaurant, in San Bernardino, CA. 
The new restaurant proved a success and the brothers were soon making $40,000 a year. Most customers were teenage or young adult males in their 20s who came there primarily to flirt with the carhop young women or young working families looking for a cheap meal. The McDonald brothers decided that the latter were the ideal customer they wanted to attract.  After a couple years in business, the brothers began making plans to renovate their business model based on the lessons they had learned. One of these involved finding a more efficient way to service customers than the carhop young women, who they considered slow, unreliable workers who spent too much time flirting with customers to increase their tips. Another was that hamburgers accounted for a large proportion of total sales. The griddles were much easier to clean than grills and burgers were faster to assemble than sandwiches. In 1948, they reorganized their business using production line principles, redesigning their restaurant to focus on hamburgers, milk shakes and French fries. While this new "McDonald's," situated at the same address, was still premised on most customers arriving by car, its design was unique due to a combination of factors:

  • the design deliberately omitted an interior dining area.
  • There was no waiting staff; orders were taken in person at the front counter, where the food was also delivered.
  • The brothers designed the kitchen area themselves, integrating their acquired knowledge into an assembly-line–style layout that maximized efficiency and output.
  • The burgers were pre-cooked and kept warm.

The new restaurant was a success and the McDonald brothers began franchising their system in 1953. At first they only franchised the system, rather than the name of their restaurant. Later, the brothers started franchising the entire concept, with restaurants built to a standard design, created by Stanley Clark Meston, and featuring Richard's suggestion of the paired Golden Arches, which formed an M when viewed from an angle. In 1954, the McDonald brothers partnered with Ray Kroc, their milkshake machine rep. The franchiser took 1.9 percent of the gross sales, of which the McDonald brothers got 0.5 percent. The brothers wished to maintain only a small number of restaurants, which conflicted with Kroc's goals. Ray Kroc eventually bought them out in 1961.

    1941 – The beginning of what many believe to be one of the “unbreakable“ records in all of sports:  Joe DiMaggio began his 56 consecutive-game hitting streak, but the Yankees lost 13-1.
    1942 – Gasoline rationing began in the US.
    1945 - COURTNEY, HENRY ALEXIUS, JR., Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Major, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. Born: 6 January 1916, Duluth, Minn. Appointed from: Minnesota. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as Executive Officer of the 2d Battalion, 22d Marines, 6th Marine Division, in action against enemy Japanese forces on Okinawa Shima in the Ryukyu Islands, 14 and 15 May 1945. Ordered to hold for the night in static defense behind Sugar Loaf Hill after leading the forward elements of his command in a prolonged fire fight, Maj. Courtney weighed the effect of a hostile night counterattack against the tactical value of an immediate marine assault, resolved to initiate the assault, and promptly obtained permission to advance and seize the forward slope of the hill. Quickly explaining the situation to his small remaining force, he declared his personal intention of moving forward and then proceeded on his way, boldly blasting nearby cave positions and neutralizing enemy guns as he went. Inspired by his courage, every man followed without hesitation, and together the intrepid marines braved a terrific concentration of Japanese gunfire to skirt the hill on the right and reach the reverse slope. Temporarily halting, Maj. Courtney sent guides to the rear for more ammunition and possible replacements. Subsequently reinforced by 26 men and an LVT load of grenades, he determined to storm the crest of the hill and crush any planned counterattack before it could gain sufficient momentum to effect a breakthrough. Leading his men by example rather than by command, he pushed ahead with unrelenting aggressiveness, hurling grenades into cave openings on the slope with devastating effect. Upon reaching the crest and observing large numbers of Japanese forming for action less than 100 yards away, he instantly attacked, waged a furious battle and succeeded in killing many of the enemy and in forcing the remainder to take cover in the caves. Determined to hold, he ordered his men to dig in and, coolly disregarding the continuous hail of flying enemy shrapnel to rally his weary troops, tirelessly aided casualties and assigned his men to more advantageous positions. Although instantly killed by a hostile mortar burst while moving among his men, Maj. Courtney, by his astute military acumen, indomitable leadership and decisive action in the face of overwhelming odds, had contributed essentially to the success of the Okinawa campaign. His great personal valor throughout sustained and enhanced the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.
    1951 - Top Hits
“If” - Perry Como
“Mockingbird Hill” - Patti Page
“On Top of Old Smokey” - The Weavers (vocal: Terry Gilkyson)
“Cold, Cold Heart” - Hank Williams
    1952 - Actor, writer, producer Chazz Palminteri was born Calogero Palmenteri in The Bronx….NOW I know where that name in the movie “Bronx Tale”, in which he starred with Robert DeNiro, came from!!
    1953 - World heavyweight champion Rocky Marciano collected his 44th pro boxing victory on this night, knocking out former champ, Jersey Joe Walcott, at Chicago Stadium in two minutes, 25 seconds of the first round
    1953 - Charlie Parker - Dizzy Gillespie jazz concert at Massey Hall, Toronto.  (Bud Powell, Max Roach, Charles Mingus, the first fusion of Bop with what was then called “Modern Jazz.”)
    1953 – KC Royals Hall of Fame 3B, George Brett, was born in Glen Dale, WV.
    1953 – The first pinewood derby was held in Manhattan Beach, CA.
    1954 - A Memphis truck driver named Elvis Presley auditioned with the house band at Memphis' Hi Hat Club and was told he'll never make it as a singer.
    1957 – Rev. Billy Graham launched his crusade before 18,000 at NYC’s Madison Square Garden.
    1959 - Top Hits
“The Happy Organ” - Dave ‘Baby' Cortez
“Sorry (I Ran All the Way Home)” - The Impalas
“Kookie, Kookie (Lend Me Your Comb)” - Edd Byrnes & Connie Stevens
“White Lightning” - George Jones
    1959 – To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the first college baseball game, between Amherst and Williams, the respective teams reenacted the original contest. 
    1962 - After five years on "Wagon Train," Robert Horton let his performing contract expire and left the popular TV series. Robert Fuller replaced Horton as the trail scout who rode with wagon master Chris Hale, played by actor John McIntire.
    1963 – Peter, Paul, and Mary won their first Grammy for “If I Had a Hammer.”
    1964 - The Smothers Brothers, Dick and Tom, gave their first concert in Carnegie Hall in New York City.
    1965 - The Byrds enter the Hot 100 for the first time with their version of Bob Dylan's "Mr. Tambourine Man," which will climb to #1 by June.
    1967 - Top Hits
“The Happening” - The Supremes
“Sweet Soul Music” - Arthur Conley
“Groovin'” - The Young Rascals
“Sam's Place” - Buck Owens
    1967 - At London's ultra-hip Bag O'Nails club, Paul McCartney meets a young photographer named Linda Eastman. They met again one year later to the day when Paul appeared with John on NBC-TV's “The Tonight Show” to talk about their upcoming venture, Apple Records.  McCartney and Eastman would marry.
    1967 – Newly-minted Hall of Fame P John Smoltz of the Atlanta Braves was born in Warren, MI.
    1969 - Governor Ronald Reagan sends in National Guard to reclaim People's Park from 6,000 protesters in Berkeley, California. Police gunfire kills a bystander, James Rector, blinds another, and injures dozens.
    1969 - Birthday of Emmitt Smith, III, famed Dallas Cowboy, in Pensacola, FL.  Widely considered to be one of the greatest running backs in NFL history, Smith became the NFL’s all-time rushing leader, breaking Walter Payton’s record, and played for three Super Bowl-winning Dallas Cowboys teams. Smith is the only running back to ever win a Super Bowl championship, the NFL Most Valuable Player award, the NFL rushing crown, and the Super Bowl Most Valuable Player award all in the same season (1993). He is also one of only four running backs to lead the NFL in rushing three or more consecutive seasons, joining Steve Van Buren, Jim Brown, and Earl Campbell.  Smith is also one of only two non-kickers in NFL history to score more than 1,000 career points (the other being Hall of Famer Jerry Rice). Smith was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2010.  In the fall of 2006, Smith won the third season of “Dancing with the Stars” with professional dancer Cheryl Burke.
    1970 - The Carpenters' second album was released by A&M Records. The title song, "(They Long to Be) Close to You", became a pop music standard and the first of six million-sellers in a row for Karen and Richard. In all, The Carpenters would have 10 gold records for singles and a dozen top ten hits to their credit. The duo won Best New Artist honors at the Grammy Awards in 1970.
    1970 – President Nixon appointed Anna Mae Hays and Elizabeth P. Hoisington the first female United States Army Generals.
    1971 - Pink Floyd played London's Crystal Palace Bowl, situated in front of a large lake in which, thanks to the band's volume, most of the fish died.
    1972 - Glen Campbell earned a gold record for his "Greatest Hits" album on this day.
    1972 - George Wallace, a former governor of Alabama and a symbol of segregation, was shot by Arthur Bremer while Wallace was at Laurel, MD, campaigning for the US presidency. For the remainder of his life (he died in 1998), Wallace was paralyzed from the waist down. On August 4, 1972, Bremer was sentenced to 67 years in prison for the shooting.
    1972 – Okinawa reverted to Japanese control after US military governance since 1945.
    1973 - California Angel Nolan Ryan pitched his first no-hitter and beat the Kansas City Royals, 3-0.  For his Hall of Fame career, Ryan threw a record seven no-hitters.
    1975 - Top Hits
“He Don't Love You (Like I Love You)” - Tony Orlando & Dawn
“Before the Next Teardrop Falls” - Freddy Fender
“Jackie Blue” - Ozark Mountain Daredevils
“She's Actin' Single (I'm Drinkin' Doubles)” - Gary Stewart
    1975 – Almost certain NFL Hall of Fame LB of the Baltimore Ravens, Ray Lewis, was born in Bartow, FL.
    1976 – Perhaps the biggest #1 draft pick bust in NFL history, Ryan Leaf, was born in Great Falls, MT.
    1981 - Len Barker of the Cleveland Indians pitched a perfect game, the first in major league baseball in 13 years, defeating the Toronto Blue Jays, 3-0, in Cleveland. Barker finished the year at 8-7, and was traded to the Atlanta Braves during the 1983 season.
    1982 - Five weeks after first appearing on the Billboard Pop chart, "Ebony and Ivory" reached #1. The Paul McCartney / Stevie Wonder duet would stay at the top for seven weeks.
    1983 - Top Hits
“Beat It” - Michael Jackson
“Let's Dance” - David Bowie
“Overkill” - Men at Work
“Whatever Happened to Old Fashioned Love” - B.J. Thomas
    1991 - Top Hits
“Joyride” - Roxette
“I Like the Way (The Kissing Game)” - Hi-Five
“Here We Go” - C + C Music Factory Presents Freedom Williams and Zelma Davis
“If I Know Me” - George Strait
    1998 - Golfer Notah Begay III, a college teammate of Tiger Woods, shot a 59 in the second round of the Nike Tour's Dominion Open in Richmond, VA. Begay thus became the third golfer to shoot a 59 in a US professional event after Al Geiberger and Chip Beck. Begay, however, did not go on to win the four-round tournament. Bob Burns did, shooting a 14-under-par 274. Begay tied for sixth place with a score of 277.
    2002 - The White House acknowledged that in the weeks before the Sept. 11 attacks, President Bush was told by U.S. intelligence that Osama bin Laden's terrorist network might hijack American airplanes, but that officials did not know that suicide hijackers were plotting to use planes as missiles.
    2008 - Two weeks after he appeared on American Idol, Neil Diamond topped the Billboard Hot 200 album chart for the first time in his career when "Home Before Dark" went to number one. The closest he came before was with the 1973 soundtrack to "Jonathan Livingston Seagull", which reached #2.
    2008 – California became the second state after Massachusetts to legalize same-sex marriage after the state's own Supreme Court ruled a previous ban unconstitutional.



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