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What has Trump actually done? I've done some research...

A little about myself: I have always been a right-leaning financially conservative liberal. Meaning I'm all for newer technologies. I want solar energy, electric cars, auto-driving technologies (Love Musk). I do care about our environment. I do believe LGBT relationships/marriage is awesome. I'm all for Black people having their fair style of policing as well. I hate Nazis, hate Communists, hate racism, sexism, abuse, etc. I hate hate. I love LOVE! I want our government to be LESS controlling and want less taxes. I do NOT believe we should be handing out welfare checks unless IF needed (you just lost a job, sure). If you are sitting on welfare for 10 years....that becomes a problem. I look at BOTH SIDES. I've signed up for newsletters/emails/facebook/twitter groups from both sides. However I've seen that the left has become a socialist groupthink mindset, for example omitting the word God in a few speeches....It's not a BIG deal but small unnoticed details may lead to big overhauls. The censorships of channels, the media attacking conservatives, people getting fired for just having a different political opinion...are you kidding me?? The media turning a blind eye to destruction yet talk about Coronavirus numbers and criminals that are resisting arrest get shot as the cop's fault...however we do need more police training. Cops are aggressive here (I do agree with my liberal friends on that). The double standard: letting people protest for BLM but when the Conservatives tried to protest to go back to work, at the beginning in March/April, they were at fault. Or how CA Gov Newsom stated "You're allowed to protest, but not allowed to have social gatherings"....isn't a protest a type of social gathering.
I don't like to be biased, but holy crap how much I've found what Trump has done for the past 3.5 years is insane!! My point is I look at both sides for politics. Anyways, I decided to do a full day's work with the help of some people to compile a list:
  1. Trump recently signed 3 bills to benefit Native people. One gives compensation to the Spokane tribe for loss of their lands in the mid-1900s, one funds Native language programs, and the third gives federal recognition to the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians in Montana.
  2. Trump finalized the creation of Space Force as our 6th Military branch.
  3. Trump signed a law to make cruelty to animals a federal felony so that animal abusers face tougher consequences.
  4. Violent crime has fallen every year he’s been in office after rising during the 2 years before he was elected.
  5. Trump signed a bill making CBD and Hemp legal.
  6. Trump’s EPA gave $100 million to fix the water infrastructure problem in Flint, Michigan.
  7. Under Trump’s leadership, in 2018 the U.S. surpassed Russia and Saudi Arabia to become the world’s largest producer of crude oil.
  8. Trump signed a law ending the gag orders on Pharmacists that prevented them from sharing money-saving information.
  9. Trump signed the “Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act” (FOSTA), which includes the “Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act” (SESTA) which both give law enforcement and victims new tools to fight sex trafficking.
  10. Trump signed a bill to require airports to provide spaces for breastfeeding Moms.
  11. The 25% lowest-paid Americans enjoyed a 4.5% income boost in November 2019, which outpaces a 2.9% gain in earnings for the country's highest-paid workers.
  12. Low-wage workers are benefiting from higher minimum wages and from corporations that are increasing entry-level pay.
  13. Trump signed the biggest wilderness protection & conservation bill in a decade and designated 375,000 acres as protected land.
  14. Trump signed the Save our Seas Act which funds $10 million per year to clean tons of plastic & garbage from the ocean.
  15. He signed a bill this year allowing some drug imports from Canada so that prescription prices would go down.
  16. Trump signed an executive order this year that forces all healthcare providers to disclose the cost of their services so that Americans can comparison shop and know how much less providers charge insurance companies.
  17. When signing that bill he said no American should be blindsided by bills for medical services they never agreed to in advance.
  18. Hospitals will now be required to post their standard charges for services, which include the discounted price a hospital is willing to accept.
  19. In the eight years prior to President Trump’s inauguration, prescription drug prices increased by an average of 3.6% per year. Under Trump, drug prices have seen year-over-year declines in nine of the last ten months, with a 1.1% drop as of the most recent month.
  20. He created a White House VA Hotline to help veterans and principally staffed it with veterans and direct family members of veterans.
  21. VA employees are being held accountable for poor performance, with more than 4,000 VA employees removed, demoted, and suspended so far.
  22. Issued an executive order requiring the Secretaries of Defense, Homeland Security, and Veterans Affairs to submit a joint plan to provide veterans access to access to mental health treatment as they transition to civilian life.
  23. Because of a bill signed and championed by Trump, In 2020, most federal employees will see their pay increase by an average of 3.1% — the largest raise in more than 10 years.
  24. Trump signed into a law up to 12 weeks of paid parental leave for millions of federal workers.
  25. Trump administration will provide HIV prevention drugs for free to 200,000 uninsured patients per year for 11 years.
  26. All-time record sales during the 2019 holidays.
  27. Trump signed an order allowing small businesses to group together when buying insurance to get a better price
  28. President Trump signed the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act that provides funding for states to develop maternal mortality reviews to better understand maternal complications and identify solutions & largely focuses on reducing the higher mortality rates for Black Americans.
  29. In 2018, President Trump signed the groundbreaking First Step Act, a criminal justice bill which enacted reforms that make our justice system fairer and help former inmates successfully return to society.
  30. The First Step Act’s reforms addressed inequities in sentencing laws that disproportionately harmed Black Americans and reformed mandatory minimums that created unfair outcomes.
  31. The First Step Act expanded judicial discretion in sentencing of non-violent crimes.
  32. Over 90% of those benefitting from the retroactive sentencing reductions in the First Step Act are Black Americans.
  33. The First Step Act provides rehabilitative programs to inmates, helping them successfully rejoin society and not return to crime.
  34. Trump increased funding for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) by more than 14%.
  35. Trump signed legislation forgiving Hurricane Katrina debt that threatened HBCUs.
  36. New single-family home sales are up 31.6% in October 2019 compared to just one year ago.
  37. Made HBCUs a priority by creating the position of executive director of the White House Initiative on HBCUs.
  38. Trump received the Bipartisan Justice Award at a historically black college for his criminal justice reform accomplishments.
  39. The poverty rate fell to a 17-year low of 11.8% under the Trump administration as a result of a jobs-rich environment.
  40. Poverty rates for African-Americans and Hispanic-Americans have reached their lowest levels since the U.S. began collecting such data.
  41. President Trump signed a bill that creates five national monuments, expands several national parks, adds 1.3 million acres of wilderness, and permanently reauthorizes the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
  42. Trump’s USDA committed $124 Million to rebuild rural water infrastructure.
  43. Consumer confidence & small business confidence is at an all-time high.
  44. More than 7 million jobs created since election.
  45. More Americans are now employed than ever recorded before in our history.
  46. More than 400,000 manufacturing jobs created since his election.
  47. Trump appointed 5 openly gay ambassadors.
  48. Trump ordered Ric Grenell, his openly gay ambassador to Germany, to lead a global initiative to decriminalize homosexuality across the globe.
  49. Through Trump’s Anti-Trafficking Coordination Team (ACTeam) initiative, Federal law enforcement more than doubled convictions of human traffickers and increased the number of defendants charged by 75% in ACTeam districts.
  50. In 2018, the Department of Justice (DOJ) dismantled an organization that was the internet’s leading source of prostitution-related advertisements resulting in sex trafficking.
  51. Trump’s OMB published new anti-trafficking guidance for government procurement officials to more effectively combat human trafficking.
  52. Trump’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations arrested 1,588 criminals associated with Human Trafficking.
  53. Trump’s Department of Health and Human Services provided funding to support the National Human Trafficking Hotline to identify perpetrators and give victims the help they need.
  54. The hotline identified 16,862 potential human trafficking cases.
  55. Trump’s DOJ provided grants to organizations that support human trafficking victims – serving nearly 9,000 cases from July 1, 2017, to June 30, 2018.
  56. The Department of Homeland Security has hired more victim assistance specialists, helping victims get resources and support.
  57. President Trump has called on Congress to pass school choice legislation so that no child is trapped in a failing school because of his or her zip code.
  58. The President signed funding legislation in September 2018 that increased funding for school choice by $42 million.
  59. The tax cuts signed into law by President Trump promote school choice by allowing families to use 529 college savings plans for elementary and secondary education.
  60. Under his leadership ISIS has lost most of their territory and been largely dismantled.
  61. ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi was killed.
  62. Signed the first Perkins CTE reauthorization since 2006, authorizing more than $1 billion for states each year to fund vocational and career education programs.
  63. Executive order expanding apprenticeship opportunities for students and workers.
  64. Trump issued an Executive Order prohibiting the U.S. government from discriminating against Christians or punishing expressions of faith.
  65. Signed an executive order that allows the government to withhold money from college campuses deemed to be anti-Semitic and who fail to combat anti-Semitism.
  66. President Trump ordered a halt to U.S. tax money going to international organizations that fund or perform abortions.
  67. Trump imposed sanctions on the socialists in Venezuela who have killed their citizens.
  68. Finalized new trade agreement with South Korea.
  69. Made a deal with the European Union to increase U.S. energy exports to Europe.
  70. Withdrew the U.S. from the job killing TPP deal.
  71. Secured $250 billion in new trade and investment deals in China and $12 billion in Vietnam.
  72. Okay’ d up to $12 billion in aid for farmers affected by unfair trade retaliation.
  73. Has had over a dozen US hostages freed, including those Obama could not get freed.
  74. Trump signed the Music Modernization Act, the biggest change to copyright law in decades.
  75. Trump secured Billions that will fund the building of a wall at our southern border.
  76. The Trump Administration is promoting second chance hiring to give former inmates the opportunity to live crime-free lives and find meaningful employment.
  77. Trump’s DOJ and the Board Of Prisons launched a new “Ready to Work Initiative” to help connect employers directly with former prisoners.
  78. President Trump’s historic tax cut legislation included new Opportunity Zone Incentives to promote investment in low-income communities across the country.
  79. 8,764 communities across the country have been designated as Opportunity Zones.
  80. Opportunity Zones are expected to spur $100 billion in long-term private capital investment in economically distressed communities across the country.
  81. Trump directed the Education Secretary to end Common Core.
  82. Trump signed the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund into law.
  83. Trump signed measure funding prevention programs for Veteran suicide.
  84. Companies have brought back over a TRILLION dollars from overseas because of the TCJA bill that Trump signed.
  85. Manufacturing jobs are growing at the fastest rate in more than 30 years.
  86. Stock Market has reached record highs.
  87. Median household income has hit highest level ever recorded.
  88. African-American unemployment is at an all-time low.(was until Covid bullshit)
  89. Hispanic-American unemployment is at an all-time low.
  90. Asian-American unemployment is at an all-time low.
  91. Women’s unemployment rate is at a 65-year low.
  92. Youth unemployment is at a 50-year low.
  93. We have the lowest unemployment rate ever recorded.
  94. The Pledge to America’s Workers has resulted in employers committing to train more than 4 million Americans.
  95. 95 percent of U.S. manufacturers are optimistic about the future— the highest ever.
  96. As a result of the Republican tax bill, small businesses will have the lowest top marginal tax rate in more than 80 years.
  97. Record number of regulations eliminated that hurt small businesses.
  98. Signed welfare reform requiring able-bodied adults who don’t have children to work or look for work if they’re on welfare.
  99. Under Trump, the FDA approved more affordable generic drugs than ever before in history.
  100. Reformed Medicare program to stop hospitals from overcharging low-income seniors on their drugs—saving seniors 100’s of millions of $$$ this year alone.
  101. Signed Right-To-Try legislation allowing terminally ill patients to try experimental treatment that wasn’t allowed before.
  102. Secured $6 billion in new funding to fight the opioid epidemic.
  103. Signed VA Choice Act and VA Accountability Act, expanded VA telehealth services, walk-in-clinics, and same-day urgent primary and mental health care.
  104. U.S. oil production recently reached all-time high so we are less dependent on oil from the Middle East.
  105. The U.S. is a net natural gas exporter for the first time since 1957.
  106. NATO allies increased their defense spending because of his pressure campaign.
  107. Withdrew the United States from the job-killing Paris Climate Accord in 2017 and that same year the U.S. still led the world by having the largest reduction in Carbon emissions.
  108. Has his circuit court judge nominees being confirmed faster than any other new administration.
  109. Had his Supreme Court Justice’s Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh confirmed.
  110. Moved U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.
  111. Agreed to a new trade deal with Mexico & Canada that will increase jobs here and $$$ coming in.
  112. Reached a breakthrough agreement with the E.U. to increase U.S. exports.
  113. Imposed tariffs on China in response to China’s forced technology transfer, intellectual property theft, and their chronically abusive trade practices, has agreed to a Part One trade deal with China.
  114. Signed legislation to improve the National Suicide Hotline.
  115. Signed the most comprehensive childhood cancer legislation ever into law, which will advance childhood cancer research and improve treatments.
  116. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act signed into law by Trump doubled the maximum amount of the child tax credit available to parents and lifted the income limits so more people could claim it.
  117. It also created a new tax credit for other dependents.
  118. In 2018, President Trump signed into law a $2.4 billion funding increase for the Child Care and Development Fund, providing a total of $8.1 billion to States to fund child care for low-income families.
  119. The Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit (CDCTC) signed into law by Trump provides a tax credit equal to 20-35% of child care expenses, $3,000 per child & $6,000 per family + Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) allow you to set aside up to $5,000 in pre-tax $ to use for child care.
  120. In 2019 President Donald Trump signed the Autism Collaboration, Accountability, Research, Education and Support Act (CARES) into law which allocates $1.8 billion in funding over the next five years to help people with autism spectrum disorder and to help their families.
  121. In 2019 President Trump signed into law two funding packages providing nearly $19 million in new funding for Lupus specific research and education programs, as well an additional $41.7 billion in funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the most Lupus funding EVER.
  122. Another upcoming accomplishment to add: In the next week or two Trump will be signing the first major anti-robocall law in decades called the TRACED Act (Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence.) Once it’s the law, the TRACED Act will extend the period of time the FCC has to catch & punish those who intentionally break telemarketing restrictions. The bill also requires voice service providers to develop a framework to verify calls are legitimate before they reach your phone.
  123. Israel-UAE peace. More Muslim countries (Countries such as Oman, Morocco, Sudan, Lebanon) said they may follow. Last time Israel and a Muslim country normalized ties was 26 years ago.
  124. US stock market continually hits all-time record highs.
Note: I would like to also add that this list will obviously be very similar to other lists if not the same, since these are facts and not really opinions.
I may have missed some stuff or duplicated a few things. Sorry about that. Please let me know if you have anything to add. Thanks for reading!
submitted by Jules0328 to trump [link] [comments]

The current turmoil in Belarus and its impact to Belarusian-Russian bilateral relations: A few points of consideration

Aleksandr Lukashenko was purportedly re-elected in Belarus's most recent elections. The current turmoil resulted. As is fairly common in certain Eastern European elections, the 80% margin by which he claimed victory gives rise to obvious doubts as to legitimacy. Mass protests and demonstrations resulted. Lukashenko has 'won' past elections by similar margins, at least 85-90%+. Lukashenko has arrested most of his political opponents, and jailed or exiled others. Journalists which report on the extent of his corruption (of which there is no shortage) tend to find themselves in prison. His title as Europe's so called 'last dictator' is well deserved.
The Global Response to Lukashenko's Purported Re-Election
The global response to Lukashenko's purported re-election has been largely as would be anticipated. Western countries -- and specifically the United States, through Mike Pompeo -- have expressed their reservations. The results are self evidently suspect. Despite this, Russia and China both endorsed the results and both countries have officially signaled their endorsement of the results. Notably, Russia historically has been Belarus's strongest and closest ally, the animosity between Putin and Lukashenko in the recent years notwithstanding.
Uncertainty from Russia
Despite the official endorsement from Putin, uncertainty remains as to the future of Russian and Belarusian bilateral relations. Several prominent Russians, including those inside Putin's inner circle, have signaled that the Lukashenko's backing from Moscow is not guaranteed.
Several developments this year contextualize the current status quo. First, negotiations for discounted oil broke down in totality earlier in February 2020. Russia not only suspended deliveries to Belarus, but offered future sales at "market rates" on a purely commercial basis. Second, the oil negotiations broke down after Putin's proposal to merge the two countries was flatly rejected. Natural gas sales were still discounted somewhat, but the lack of a market rate discount for oil sales to Belarus was a significant blow to the integrity of their relationship.
The basic idea here is that when global oil prices were high, Russia could with very little significant loss discount its sales to Belarus to gain favor and geopolitical influence. When oil prices bottomed out -- as they have in recent years -- the costs of that deal to Russia rose, so Russia sought to re-negotiate. In the past, Lukashenko made few concessions (and in fact used the potential of closer ties with the West to extract that concession from Russia, consistent with his historical maneuvering of the animosity between Russia and NATO to his distinct advantage). At the very least, Russia wanted closer economic (and by implication, political) integration; potentially, integration to the level of merging the two countries once Lukashenko left office. Lukashenko predictably rebuked any such proposal.
Shrinking Russian Sphere of Influence
From the outside looking in, it may not make sense why Russia would even want to integrate with Belarus. All doubt however is resolved in consideration of how the other near and distant dominoes seem to be lining up -- each of them to fall outside the Russian sphere of influence. Consider Kazakhstan, for example. Nazarbayev (Kazakh president) has made deliberate efforts to broaden its economic and cultural reach outside the sphere of Russian influence, even to the point that he changed the Kazakh alphabet from Cyrillic to Latin in 2017. The idea was to draw a line in the sand relative to the scope and extent of Russian influence in Central Asia in general and Kazakhstan in particular.
The fact that Russia hemorrhaged allied states following the USSR's collapse is a matter of historical record. Thirteen Warsaw Pact countries have joined NATO. So, when Georgia endeavored to join the EU in 2007, Putin invaded Abkhazia and South Ossetia -- both of which remain allegedly "disputed" territories to this day. A highly deceptive analysis concluded Georgia was to blame; but the whole reason Russia invaded in the first place was because Georgia was actively seeking NATO membership -- of course, to prevent exactly such an invasion. In reality, Russia invaded a sovereign country for the purpose of preventing it from joining NATO. Putin's response shows that in Russia's analysis, Georgia is better as a fragmented state than a NATO ally or EU member.
A similar pattern played out in Ukraine. As I have discussed before, when Ukraine sought closer economic and political integration with Western Europe and the United States, that was met with Russian meddling in Ukraine's domestic politics, even to the point of installing Yanukovych as Russia's puppet Ukrainian president. Thereafter, in the face of maidan, Putin invaded eastern Ukraine and seized Crimea. In the example of Ukraine as in Georgia, the outcome shows that Russia would prefer that Ukraine be a failed or fragmented state than a NATO ally or EU member.
Recall that the goal here was for Putin to create an economic alliance in at least Eastern Europe and Central Asia to rival the EU, and ideally as an insurance policy against further sanctions. The first step in that process would be developing individualized economic integration projects among each of the former Soviet bloc states. Instead, Putin lost Kazakhstan, Georgia, and Ukraine in the span of less than a decade. Ukraine was the first such integration project -- and that resulted in then-president of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych's absconding Ukraine for Russia in disgrace.
So is Belarus next?
Perhaps. It's a question worth asking; especially considering what "being next" could mean.
In a first set of possible worlds, Lukashenko is out because of his own decisions, or because he is forced out (potentially by the protesters, Russia or both). In 2018-2019, when Russian-Belarusian bilateral relations were at their worst, it's conceivable that Putin might have tried something like he achieved in Ukraine -- but highly unlikely.
It isn't obvious that Putin would be unwilling invade, given in particular the fact that he invaded Georgia and Ukraine under somewhat similar circumstances and that at this moment Lukashenko is very weak. Lukashenko has never faced mass protests/demonstrations of this caliber before. Putin has, and he survived them, but the public's dissatisfaction with Lukashenko's "leadership" is amplified by the uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus, the consequential economic fallout attributable to the world's response to the coronavirus, and an increasingly ravenous lion to the east in its once-closer ally Russia.
This combination of factors certainly suggests that if Moscow sees the opportunity to try to replace Lukashenko with someone more reliable to the Kremlin, that is exactly what the Kremlin would try to accomplish. In that situation, Moscow would be re-running the same play-book it ran to get Yanukovych elected as president of Ukraine. Even if such a far-fetched plan were to work -- and it almost certainly would not, in the short term or the long term -- who would take Lukashenko's place? There is no one that would not leave Moscow worse off than they would be with Lukashenko. While it's obvious why he's not ideal, given the recent history of strife between the two countries, there is no world where Russia's interests are -- at this time -- served by trying to replace Lukashenko with a Kremlin puppet.
In the second set of possible worlds, Lukashenko remains and has to quell or pacify the Belarusian political unrest while maintaining ground against increasing Russian pressure. To accomplish this, Lukashenko could do something like seek a trade deal with the EU, as both Georgia and Ukraine did. But that would almost certainly would involve some kind of military response from Russia, just like Georgia and then Ukraine. While there's an argument to be made that Lukashenko's historically closer relationship with Russia (however complicated) insulates him from the kind of retaliation Putin visited upon Georgia and Ukraine, he would still be playing with fire. The Russian response to that kind of a bargaining chip from Russia would likely not come in the form of unwillingness to discount oil; it would come in the same form as was witnessed in Eastern Ukraine. To be clear, neither Putin nor Lukashenko benefit in that case.
The remaining option is most likely: Lukashenko "cracks down" on the protests, and then everything goes back to normal.
Why Belarus is Different from Ukraine & Georgia
As I wrote before, Belarus is not Ukraine. Maidan in Ukraine was in direct response to Ukrainian government's preventing Ukraine from joining the EU. The Ukrainian government opted for a counter-agreement with Russia instead. In response, Ukrainians took to the streets and sought Yanukovych's resignation. He subsequently fled to Russia. There were other abuses that precipitated the demonstrations, like Yanukovych arresting his pro-democracy political opponents and arresting journalists who were reporting on the extent of his corruption, but the threshold moment was when Yanukovych tried to rebuke the democratic will of the Ukrainian people (shirk the EU in favor of the Kremlin). So, for Ukraine, the goal was a clear and decisive move towards the EU and the United States (and NATO, by implication). This was in response to decades of Kremlin meddling in Ukrainian domestic political affairs. Maidan there was Ukraine setting forth a future for itself that did not include Putin.
Belarus also isn't Georgia. The purported underlying ethnic conflict behind the Russian invasion of Georgia was little more than an illusory pretext; Saakashvili's primary aim for Georgia was to become a NATO member and there was clear support for that in the Bush Administration because of the implications that would have to world oil markets. Specifically, despite the fact that Georgia has no reserves of its own, a pipeline across Georgia would substantially decrease Western dependence on Middle Eastern oil. Bush even outlined a pathway for both Ukraine and Georgia to join NATO. This was intolerable to Putin, and so he invaded as a result.
Belarus and its present situation is almost wholly incongruous. Belarus is now and has always been a far more authoritarian regime than Ukraine ever was, even at its worst. Unlike Ukraine and Georgia, Belarus never made the initial step towards actual democracy that ultimately laid the foundation the Ukrainian maidan or the Georgian efforts to draw closer to the West. Belarus also does not have ambitions of closer ties with the West, and the EU and Untied States in particular -- which Ukraine has sought for some time. Lukashenko only ever used that as a bargaining chip to extract concessions from Moscow -- a fact of which Putin is invariably aware. The riots taking place now in Belarus are not oriented towards any goal in particular, either. It's arbitrary rage. Even if they were oriented towards democratic reform, and it is not clear that they are, Belarus has no intention of divesting itself from the Russian sphere of influence -- however high the costs of maintaining that relationship may be.
Compromise / Cooperation best serve both Belarus's & Russia's Interests
If both Belarus and Russia act rationally, they will cooperate and compromise. Russia will have little choice but to accept the fact that Belarus is not merging with Russia any time soon. The costs of Russia's invading would be inexorably high. There is no one in Belarusian politics that can replace Lukashenko that would be both able to preserve Belarus as a state and that would in the same instance be able to more effectively advance Moscow's interests. Likewise, it is in Russia's interest that these riots and protests throughout Belarus come to and end -- as quickly and expeditiously as possible. Political unrest in one totalitarian country has a tendency to spread to another; as Putin has experienced time and again, dating back to his time in Dresden through the present. Further, this all comes at a time when Russian public confidence in Putin is at an all time low -- and the potential for another Moscow maidan (and perhaps one that might actually be successful) is at an all time high. Given that, the more pertinent question in the final analysis might even be, if Lukashenko falls, is Putin next? Their fates are tied together, whether they like it or not.
submitted by theoryofdoom to geopolitics [link] [comments]

Earning Plays for Dummies: $UA is Under Water (Basic TA & Obvious Catalysts)

Earning Plays for Dummies: $UA is Under Water (Basic TA & Obvious Catalysts)
TL;DR: $UA is taking on a lot of debt because of historically low retail sales causing near bankruptcy cash flow. Largest athletic apparel retailer or not, when the business isn't making money it's losing it. Taking on LARGE amount of debt, to raise cash, to keep the doors open is not the nail in the coffin, but it is damn near close. ER this Friday 7/31 could be a historic miss and future projections, margins, growth and competition will cause a sell off.
Super BEAR: 7/31 $8.50-$9 Puts
Conservative BEAR: 8/14 $7.50-$8 Puts

To Bearish Autists,

Alright retards, this DD is not done by a professional CFA, CPA or single employee LLC day trading firm. I'm a college grad, with a BS in Chemistry, and i'm 100% self taught on trading for the last 5 years. It's a hobby that pays for other hobbies, not a job and definitely not a thing i do without being informed. That being said heres my hypothesis.

$UA Has Struggled

This is no secret as many of us have brand name recognition of $UA and many of us own it. We know its not Nike and it's a step above Champions and other retail store brands, but it is simply the cost efficient/value brand for people that want quality and but aren't willing to pay Nike prices or get chafed nipples from the $WMT brand. It's become the largest athletic apparel brand in the US, with growth potential in China, signing one of the NBAs biggest star Steph Curry.
Heres the problem, the company is facing increased competition and Covid may of burned down the house when they closed retailers. $UA helped prove there is a middle ground between $NKE and $WMT in quality and price, but they failed to build beyond that, and now $AMZN and other other brands have saturated the market. When i need workout clothes, i look online, a small part of $UA business model. I look for value, and although i'm not buying Nike i'm not buying $UA either. There are tons of other brands that provide the same quality cheaper, and i don't care about brand at they gym, just comfort. $UA failed to build a signature style, they got Steph Curry, but i never hear a 24 year old sneaker head dying over their new pair of shoes. They failed to push online channels of distribution, "have you been to their website?", and some compare their pandemic model to $LULU but they are completely different brands by quality, price and consumer segment.
The companies lack of success could be bad marketing, they have the largest athletic apparel market share, but they can't turn a decent YOY earnings report. So it comes down to poor financial management and high levels of competition driving lower margins. In 2016 $UA was nearly $50/share and its lost billions YOY. Now it's facing an unpredictable pandemic, and record low revenue on a house of debt.

Important Factors for ER


  • Covid
The pandemic closed retailers and one of the largest retailers of $UA is Kohl's ($KSS). Because nearly 80% of the companies worth is in their merchandise revenue, this is a major hit. The other 20% is a licensee program that they get from selling the right to 3rd party manufacturers to make and sell the brand. They get revenue from licenses, but i'm not sure about royalties. This means that wholesale manufacturers could sell to other online retailers at a lower competitive rate than $UA if they are crafty enough, and their is supposedly low oversight on this. You can buy $UA on $AMZN but that doesn't mean you will be buying directly from $UA, and this could be true in open retail stores now. from 2017 to Q1 2020 online sales on $UA website have only grown 4%. $UA has had a tough time to have a direct to consumer channel over the past two quarters. The pandemic has lead to huge losses in retail sales, and the brands themselves. This leads us to our next subject.

  • DEBT DEBT & More DEBT
$UA Market Cap: $4.837 Billion
Liabilities: $3.387 Billion (Q1 2020)
Assets: $1.550 Billion (Q1 2020)
Cash is KING and $UA is in desperate need of it with a recent convertible note offering that raised over $400 million dollars. I'm not a finance expert, but here's a snippet that explains the liquidity crunch.

As of March 31, Under Armour had just $959 million in cash. Now, it recently raised another $460 million or so in a convertible note, so its total liquidity is about $1.41 billion. But if it burns through $400 million over the next two quarters, the balance would fall to $600 million or so.
At that point, the company would likely have to raise permanent equity and/or a mixture of equity and debt. Right now the company’s tangible book value per share (TBVPS) is just $1.02 billion, or $2.26 per share, according to data compiled by Seeking Alpha.>So, here is the problem: By the end of Q3, with another $800 million in FCF loses, the tangible book value will fall to $224 million or so, and the TBVPS will be just 49 cents per share. If that’s the case, there is no way that UA stock would still be trading at $9.28 per share, where it was earlier this week.-InvestorsPlace (Mark Hake)
Simply put they need to be frugal and cut cost to prevent bankruptcy. this is shown further in the last two weeks when $UA announced they will sell their running/social app, MyFitnessPal. They also sought to break a sponsorship deal with UCLA to conserve cash (nearly $20mil/year).
The price tag for MyFitnessPal in 2015 was $425million, i don’t think $UA will have a easy time getting anyone to buy it, much less gain on the investment. Also the sponsorship deal isn’t broken, yet, and if they do it may come with a huge monetary penalty....exactly what they want to avoid.
This weeks earnings report will announce a huge amount of new liabilities along with massive reductions in revenue expectations. This is the most important part of the ER this week.

  • China
Good news this week for $UA is that they won a branding lawsuit in China this week...against a competitor that you nor I have and will never hear of.
China is a very interesting component in the American economic and political world. They are a huge market, but politically they are neither our ally nor our foe. India will give us the same problem in 10-15 years. With increased tensions between DC and Beijing the risk of tariffs and american companies suffering are on the rise, especially retail and manufacturing.
However, China presents a huge growth opportunity to whichever lucky retailers and brands can bribe the right officials and not get caught. $UA is one of those lucky companies, but they are competing in a tough sector. Nike, Adidas, New Balance, a zillion new brands that nobody has heard of and of course knock offs. I lived in Shanghai for a year in college, and theirs “Fake mall” everywhere selling the new Jorban’s and Rolex’s and of course $UA and the Chinese government will never stop it because they don’t practice fair trade practices, at least correctly.
30% of revenue for $UA is international business including several asian and european countries and Australia. China could eventually be more of a cash cow than the US for $UA.
The international opportunity is real, but $UA may never see the light at the end of the tunnel due to this dark period of financial ruins and a competitive marketplace.

  • Upside?
The ER for $UA is going to be devastating as it has been in quarters past. you’d be insane to think any differently as the company has only seen worse and worse circumstances with little navigational correction. The only thing that could prevent a total 15-25% downside is some sort of good news. What possible good news could they have, i personally can’t think of any if they are being honest and don’t give BS projections like $TSLA. IF you think of any, or i’m missing any honest upside to this ER please comment.

  • Expectations
EPS: -0.4$ (Big miss)
Revenue: $536mil (Near miss)
Revenue is key, but the Cash flow and added liabilities will be the dagger.

A LITTLE TA & CHART PRICE ACTION

6 month Daily candle
The price of $UA has been hovering around $6.40 & $10.60 for nearly 5 months. $UA has found a solid support at $8.25 and has an upward channel trend, and this has been a very slow recovery relative to other retail brands.
RSI is inching toward overbought. MACD is unsure of the last two months progression and is looking to swing one way or the other after the ER, my bet is down. i expect that $UA will continue on trend nearing $10.60, if the stock price does not fall below the three day trend line(Lilac) then i will wait until thursday afternoon to buy the Puts for the morning ER Call. IF it falls below the lilac line before thursday afternoon i expect my downward channel to be correct and i purchase puts immediately.
Still pondering my strategy for entry and optimizing the return, between there two option ideas.
Super BEAR: 7/31 $9-$9.50
Conservative BEAR: 8/14 $7.50-$8 Puts
$UA has a great value product. It has not done a good job financially due to massive oversight in fiscal management, not creating a better direct to consumer interface, and not being competitive enough in a market with stagnant margins and retail competition that can undercut and or be more popular than the other with celebrities and fashion. $UA is not $LULU, and its drowning in debt with no end in sight. Their model has failed, and their leadership has failed. I suspect retail traders who know $UA by name recognition are propping this up, not understanding their in trouble. As soon as institutional money abandons so will the pocket investors, not to poke fun at you retards.

But hey, i may just be a fucking retard.
P.S. - IF $UA goes under, or is bought out, which athletic apparel company gains the most? My guess is $NKE (long) or $AMZN.
Edit: 7/27 today the SEC notified $UA that they will enforce action against the company for accounting practices seen as fraudulent in 2016 and 2017. It keeps getting worse.
Edit: 7/30 today will most likely be the best opportunity to get cheap 10-20% OTM puts for Friday’s earning call. The stock is shrugged off SEC notices to top executives and a gloomy prediction for earnings. But the market isn’t rational right now, if it ever is, and the stock is looking to squeeze out of its channel past $10.60, and people will take profit before the crash after ER.
Edit: 7/30 AH. 2500 shares pushed the stock up nearly 4%...still expecting big downward projection come morning. Bought 8/14 $8.50 puts this AM.
Edit: 7/30 AH. 10,000 volume pushed the stock up 10% when it moves 1-2% on 5-7 million volume days. I smell stock manipulation by an insider who want to distract from the ER.
Result: AH high of $12.80 and down to $10.25 pre market, I didn’t expect price action to play such a large role in this ER.
Final: watching for 8/14 $8 put, won’t hold till expire most likely. AH/PM on 7/31 was wild and ruined the lotto for 7/31. I’m convinced it was manipulated, why else would a stock increase 25% AH before earnings and drop 27% thereafter from the AH high...in the first hour of trading...they wanted the stock to have buffer and show a new price action target/action...should of dropped below $9 but $9.49 from $12.80 high at least validates my opinion to some degree. $9.31 new support for monday, may blow past support channel at $8.90 and then drop to $8.20 soon after. OR there could be a retracement to the idiotic $12.81. All in all Lost 1% of my account on a yolo, truly retarded.


Daily Candles

1min candles - Note AH pump...
submitted by Miccodaddy to wallstreetbets [link] [comments]

What has Trump actually done? I've done some research... (Requested Re-post)

A little about myself: I have always been a right-leaning financially conservative liberal. Meaning I'm all for newer technologies. I want solar energy, electric cars, auto-driving technologies (Love Musk). I do care about our environment. I do believe LGBT relationships/marriage is awesome. I'm all for Black people having their fair style of policing as well. I hate Nazis, hate Communists, hate racism, sexism, abuse, etc. I hate hate. I love LOVE! I want our government to be LESS controlling and want less taxes. I do NOT believe we should be handing out welfare checks unless IF needed (you just lost a job, sure). If you are sitting on welfare for 10 years....that becomes a problem. I look at BOTH SIDES. I've signed up for newsletters/emails/facebook/twitter groups from both sides. However I've seen that the left has become a socialist groupthink mindset, for example omitting the word God in a few speeches....It's not a BIG deal but small unnoticed details may lead to big overhauls. The censorships of channels, the media attacking conservatives, people getting fired for just having a different political opinion...are you kidding me?? The media turning a blind eye to destruction yet talk about Coronavirus numbers and criminals that are resisting arrest get shot as the cop's fault...however we do need more police training. Cops are aggressive here (I do agree with my liberal friends on that). The double standard: letting people protest for BLM but when the Conservatives tried to protest to go back to work, at the beginning in March/April, they were at fault. Or how CA Gov Newsom stated "You're allowed to protest, but not allowed to have social gatherings"....isn't a protest a type of social gathering.
I don't like to be biased, but holy crap how much I've found what Trump has done for the past 3.5 years is insane!! My point is I look at both sides for politics. Anyways, I decided to do a full day's work with the help of some people to compile a list:
  1. Trump recently signed 3 bills to benefit Native people. One gives compensation to the Spokane tribe for loss of their lands in the mid-1900s, one funds Native language programs, and the third gives federal recognition to the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians in Montana.
  2. Trump finalized the creation of Space Force as our 6th Military branch.
  3. Trump signed a law to make cruelty to animals a federal felony so that animal abusers face tougher consequences.
  4. Violent crime has fallen every year he’s been in office after rising during the 2 years before he was elected.
  5. Trump signed a bill making CBD and Hemp legal.
  6. Trump’s EPA gave $100 million to fix the water infrastructure problem in Flint, Michigan.
  7. Under Trump’s leadership, in 2018 the U.S. surpassed Russia and Saudi Arabia to become the world’s largest producer of crude oil.
  8. Trump signed a law ending the gag orders on Pharmacists that prevented them from sharing money-saving information.
  9. Trump signed the “Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act” (FOSTA), which includes the “Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act” (SESTA) which both give law enforcement and victims new tools to fight sex trafficking.
  10. Trump signed a bill to require airports to provide spaces for breastfeeding Moms.
  11. The 25% lowest-paid Americans enjoyed a 4.5% income boost in November 2019, which outpaces a 2.9% gain in earnings for the country's highest-paid workers.
  12. Low-wage workers are benefiting from higher minimum wages and from corporations that are increasing entry-level pay.
  13. Trump signed the biggest wilderness protection & conservation bill in a decade and designated 375,000 acres as protected land.
  14. Trump signed the Save our Seas Act which funds $10 million per year to clean tons of plastic & garbage from the ocean.
  15. He signed a bill this year allowing some drug imports from Canada so that prescription prices would go down.
  16. Trump signed an executive order this year that forces all healthcare providers to disclose the cost of their services so that Americans can comparison shop and know how much less providers charge insurance companies.
  17. When signing that bill he said no American should be blindsided by bills for medical services they never agreed to in advance.
  18. Hospitals will now be required to post their standard charges for services, which include the discounted price a hospital is willing to accept.
  19. In the eight years prior to President Trump’s inauguration, prescription drug prices increased by an average of 3.6% per year. Under Trump, drug prices have seen year-over-year declines in nine of the last ten months, with a 1.1% drop as of the most recent month.
  20. He created a White House VA Hotline to help veterans and principally staffed it with veterans and direct family members of veterans.
  21. VA employees are being held accountable for poor performance, with more than 4,000 VA employees removed, demoted, and suspended so far.
  22. Issued an executive order requiring the Secretaries of Defense, Homeland Security, and Veterans Affairs to submit a joint plan to provide veterans access to access to mental health treatment as they transition to civilian life.
  23. Because of a bill signed and championed by Trump, In 2020, most federal employees will see their pay increase by an average of 3.1% — the largest raise in more than 10 years.
  24. Trump signed into a law up to 12 weeks of paid parental leave for millions of federal workers.
  25. Trump administration will provide HIV prevention drugs for free to 200,000 uninsured patients per year for 11 years.
  26. All-time record sales during the 2019 holidays.
  27. Trump signed an order allowing small businesses to group together when buying insurance to get a better price
  28. President Trump signed the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act that provides funding for states to develop maternal mortality reviews to better understand maternal complications and identify solutions & largely focuses on reducing the higher mortality rates for Black Americans.
  29. In 2018, President Trump signed the groundbreaking First Step Act, a criminal justice bill which enacted reforms that make our justice system fairer and help former inmates successfully return to society.
  30. The First Step Act’s reforms addressed inequities in sentencing laws that disproportionately harmed Black Americans and reformed mandatory minimums that created unfair outcomes.
  31. The First Step Act expanded judicial discretion in sentencing of non-violent crimes.
  32. Over 90% of those benefitting from the retroactive sentencing reductions in the First Step Act are Black Americans.
  33. The First Step Act provides rehabilitative programs to inmates, helping them successfully rejoin society and not return to crime.
  34. Trump increased funding for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) by more than 14%.
  35. Trump signed legislation forgiving Hurricane Katrina debt that threatened HBCUs.
  36. New single-family home sales are up 31.6% in October 2019 compared to just one year ago.
  37. Made HBCUs a priority by creating the position of executive director of the White House Initiative on HBCUs.
  38. Trump received the Bipartisan Justice Award at a historically black college for his criminal justice reform accomplishments.
  39. The poverty rate fell to a 17-year low of 11.8% under the Trump administration as a result of a jobs-rich environment.
  40. Poverty rates for African-Americans and Hispanic-Americans have reached their lowest levels since the U.S. began collecting such data.
  41. President Trump signed a bill that creates five national monuments, expands several national parks, adds 1.3 million acres of wilderness, and permanently reauthorizes the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
  42. Trump’s USDA committed $124 Million to rebuild rural water infrastructure.
  43. Consumer confidence & small business confidence is at an all-time high.
  44. More than 7 million jobs created since election.
  45. More Americans are now employed than ever recorded before in our history.
  46. More than 400,000 manufacturing jobs created since his election.
  47. Trump appointed 5 openly gay ambassadors.
  48. Trump ordered Ric Grenell, his openly gay ambassador to Germany, to lead a global initiative to decriminalize homosexuality across the globe.
  49. Through Trump’s Anti-Trafficking Coordination Team (ACTeam) initiative, Federal law enforcement more than doubled convictions of human traffickers and increased the number of defendants charged by 75% in ACTeam districts.
  50. In 2018, the Department of Justice (DOJ) dismantled an organization that was the internet’s leading source of prostitution-related advertisements resulting in sex trafficking.
  51. Trump’s OMB published new anti-trafficking guidance for government procurement officials to more effectively combat human trafficking.
  52. Trump’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations arrested 1,588 criminals associated with Human Trafficking.
  53. Trump’s Department of Health and Human Services provided funding to support the National Human Trafficking Hotline to identify perpetrators and give victims the help they need.
  54. The hotline identified 16,862 potential human trafficking cases.
  55. Trump’s DOJ provided grants to organizations that support human trafficking victims – serving nearly 9,000 cases from July 1, 2017, to June 30, 2018.
  56. The Department of Homeland Security has hired more victim assistance specialists, helping victims get resources and support.
  57. President Trump has called on Congress to pass school choice legislation so that no child is trapped in a failing school because of his or her zip code.
  58. The President signed funding legislation in September 2018 that increased funding for school choice by $42 million.
  59. The tax cuts signed into law by President Trump promote school choice by allowing families to use 529 college savings plans for elementary and secondary education.
  60. Under his leadership ISIS has lost most of their territory and been largely dismantled.
  61. ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi was killed.
  62. Signed the first Perkins CTE reauthorization since 2006, authorizing more than $1 billion for states each year to fund vocational and career education programs.
  63. Executive order expanding apprenticeship opportunities for students and workers.
  64. Trump issued an Executive Order prohibiting the U.S. government from discriminating against Christians or punishing expressions of faith.
  65. Signed an executive order that allows the government to withhold money from college campuses deemed to be anti-Semitic and who fail to combat anti-Semitism.
  66. President Trump ordered a halt to U.S. tax money going to international organizations that fund or perform abortions.
  67. Trump imposed sanctions on the socialists in Venezuela who have killed their citizens.
  68. Finalized new trade agreement with South Korea.
  69. Made a deal with the European Union to increase U.S. energy exports to Europe.
  70. Withdrew the U.S. from the job killing TPP deal.
  71. Secured $250 billion in new trade and investment deals in China and $12 billion in Vietnam.
  72. Okay’ d up to $12 billion in aid for farmers affected by unfair trade retaliation.
  73. Has had over a dozen US hostages freed, including those Obama could not get freed.
  74. Trump signed the Music Modernization Act, the biggest change to copyright law in decades.
  75. Trump secured Billions that will fund the building of a wall at our southern border.
  76. The Trump Administration is promoting second chance hiring to give former inmates the opportunity to live crime-free lives and find meaningful employment.
  77. Trump’s DOJ and the Board Of Prisons launched a new “Ready to Work Initiative” to help connect employers directly with former prisoners.
  78. President Trump’s historic tax cut legislation included new Opportunity Zone Incentives to promote investment in low-income communities across the country.
  79. 8,764 communities across the country have been designated as Opportunity Zones.
  80. Opportunity Zones are expected to spur $100 billion in long-term private capital investment in economically distressed communities across the country.
  81. Trump directed the Education Secretary to end Common Core.
  82. Trump signed the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund into law.
  83. Trump signed measure funding prevention programs for Veteran suicide.
  84. Companies have brought back over a TRILLION dollars from overseas because of the TCJA bill that Trump signed.
  85. Manufacturing jobs are growing at the fastest rate in more than 30 years.
  86. Stock Market has reached record highs.
  87. Median household income has hit highest level ever recorded.
  88. African-American unemployment is at an all-time low.(was until Covid bullshit)
  89. Hispanic-American unemployment is at an all-time low.
  90. Asian-American unemployment is at an all-time low.
  91. Women’s unemployment rate is at a 65-year low.
  92. Youth unemployment is at a 50-year low.
  93. We have the lowest unemployment rate ever recorded.
  94. The Pledge to America’s Workers has resulted in employers committing to train more than 4 million Americans.
  95. 95 percent of U.S. manufacturers are optimistic about the future— the highest ever.
  96. As a result of the Republican tax bill, small businesses will have the lowest top marginal tax rate in more than 80 years.
  97. Record number of regulations eliminated that hurt small businesses.
  98. Signed welfare reform requiring able-bodied adults who don’t have children to work or look for work if they’re on welfare.
  99. Under Trump, the FDA approved more affordable generic drugs than ever before in history.
  100. Reformed Medicare program to stop hospitals from overcharging low-income seniors on their drugs—saving seniors 100’s of millions of $$$ this year alone.
  101. Signed Right-To-Try legislation allowing terminally ill patients to try experimental treatment that wasn’t allowed before.
  102. Secured $6 billion in new funding to fight the opioid epidemic.
  103. Signed VA Choice Act and VA Accountability Act, expanded VA telehealth services, walk-in-clinics, and same-day urgent primary and mental health care.
  104. U.S. oil production recently reached all-time high so we are less dependent on oil from the Middle East.
  105. The U.S. is a net natural gas exporter for the first time since 1957.
  106. NATO allies increased their defense spending because of his pressure campaign.
  107. Withdrew the United States from the job-killing Paris Climate Accord in 2017 and that same year the U.S. still led the world by having the largest reduction in Carbon emissions.
  108. Has his circuit court judge nominees being confirmed faster than any other new administration.
  109. Had his Supreme Court Justice’s Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh confirmed.
  110. Moved U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.
  111. Agreed to a new trade deal with Mexico & Canada that will increase jobs here and $$$ coming in.
  112. Reached a breakthrough agreement with the E.U. to increase U.S. exports.
  113. Imposed tariffs on China in response to China’s forced technology transfer, intellectual property theft, and their chronically abusive trade practices, has agreed to a Part One trade deal with China.
  114. Signed legislation to improve the National Suicide Hotline.
  115. Signed the most comprehensive childhood cancer legislation ever into law, which will advance childhood cancer research and improve treatments.
  116. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act signed into law by Trump doubled the maximum amount of the child tax credit available to parents and lifted the income limits so more people could claim it.
  117. It also created a new tax credit for other dependents.
  118. In 2018, President Trump signed into law a $2.4 billion funding increase for the Child Care and Development Fund, providing a total of $8.1 billion to States to fund child care for low-income families.
  119. The Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit (CDCTC) signed into law by Trump provides a tax credit equal to 20-35% of child care expenses, $3,000 per child & $6,000 per family + Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) allow you to set aside up to $5,000 in pre-tax $ to use for child care.
  120. In 2019 President Donald Trump signed the Autism Collaboration, Accountability, Research, Education and Support Act (CARES) into law which allocates $1.8 billion in funding over the next five years to help people with autism spectrum disorder and to help their families.
  121. In 2019 President Trump signed into law two funding packages providing nearly $19 million in new funding for Lupus specific research and education programs, as well an additional $41.7 billion in funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the most Lupus funding EVER.
  122. Another upcoming accomplishment to add: In the next week or two Trump will be signing the first major anti-robocall law in decades called the TRACED Act (Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence.) Once it’s the law, the TRACED Act will extend the period of time the FCC has to catch & punish those who intentionally break telemarketing restrictions. The bill also requires voice service providers to develop a framework to verify calls are legitimate before they reach your phone.
  123. Israel-UAE peace. More Muslim countries (Countries such as Oman, Morocco, Sudan, Lebanon) said they may follow. Last time Israel and a Muslim country normalized ties was 26 years ago.
  124. US stock market continually hits all-time record highs.
Note: I would like to also add that this list will obviously be very similar to other lists if not the same, since these are facts and not really opinions.
I may have missed some stuff or duplicated a few things. Sorry about that. Please let me know if you have anything to add. Thanks for reading!
submitted by Jules0328 to donaldtrump [link] [comments]

Repost of u/Cpt_Tsundere_Sharks 's post about the unfulfilled martial fantasy

First off, a request to the mods: Can you not delete the post so that people can read what the post was about since it had a lot of content
Other than that, u/Cpt_Tsundere_Sharks post:
For a long time now, I have been playing almost exclusively martial characters, very rarely if ever playing full spellcaster classes. Some people would say that this is boring, that I should expand my horizons, do other things, but part of the reason I play so many martials is that the ultimate warrior is my ideal power fantasy. I don't care for the wizard who can bend space and time or the druid who can turn themselves into a dragon or the cleric who has learned to become the very avatar of their god on this mortal plane. These things do not interest me, they are not the representation of the kind of character I would want to become at the height of their power in a fantasy setting. No, my power fantasy is the man who can take on the world through martial prowess alone. To be a character who has become so skilled with his blade, so mighty with the wielding of weapons, that he is considered an army unto himself. A terror that carves its way through the battlefield, bolstering the morale of his allies and crushing the enemies that stand before him with unstoppable force.
But, therein lies the problem. This is not possible for martial characters in Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition.
Now, let's back up a bit and get some context first. Please bear with me, this is probably going to be a long post.
A conversation that I regularly participate in the comments of this subreddit one where I feel martial characters are underpowered in comparison to spellcasting classes. Many would disagree by saying something along the lines of this:
"Spellcasters are versatile with low hit points while martial characters are tanky with good single target damage. That's the trade off."
The idea is that it is fair that a wizard can cast Fireball to hit multiple targets at once because eventually the Fighter can learn to make 4 attacks in one turn and use all of them to absolutely wail on one guy. AoE damage vs. Single Target damage. And for a while, I agreed with this notion. It's only recently that I've come to realize that even if this is true, it's still unfair.
There are situations that can represent a challenge without access to magic that simultaneously can be handwaved with magic. Stealth can be trivialized through Pass Without a Trace or higher level castings of Invisibility. Uncross-able divides can be crossed with Dimension Door or Arcane Gate or even just a simple Misty Step. A person can be convinced to do something with a casting of Suggestion or forced to do something with Dominate Person. These are the things that magic is capable of accomplishing. And this capacity to be useful in a myriad of circumstances is one of the great draws of being able to cast magic.
However, it's considered to be a fair trade that martial characters are not good/completely incapable of accomplishing such things simply because they are good at being able to hit things. Not even things, but a singular thing. Single target damage. Only Fighters get more than two attacks per Action, so getting mobbed by a large number of enemies at once is very bad for any martial character that is not a Fighter, and only marginally less bad if you are a Fighter. The problem of course is simply that they aren't capable of hitting them all at once. The martial's current role in a party is that they are supposed to be the ones who deal a large amount of damage to the boss enemy on their turn. The Barbarian uses their Reckless attack to roll 4d20 and try to get a Brutal Critical on the Demogorgon, the Fighter uses their Action Surge to try and hit the Adult Red Dragon 8 times, the Paladin uses all of their highest level spell slots to Divine Smite Acererak for 7d8 Radiant Damage. Lots of damage, but only on the single enemy. I find this to be unfair as a trade off for two primary reasons:
It feels bad to be only good at fighting single enemies. All of these martial examples are not likely to be good at skill checks. Good at what they're good at, sure, but most characters will only end up with between 4 and 6 proficiencies unless they're a Rogue or take the Skilled Feat. And in all of these cases, the optimal stat distribution causes them to not be naturally good at other things as well. Barbarians are very multi-ability-dependent, needing high Strength and Constitution but then also needing Dexterity to bump up their AC, each being prioritized in that order. That means the other three mental stats will become worse. Fighters also tend to prioritize Strength and Constitution (if you're playing the classic archetype) and most Paladins do the same with Charisma being a tertiary stat since it is their spellcasting. So with all of them prioritizing Strength and Constitution, there is only a single skill (Athletics) between those two abilities. Even if you play a Dexterity Fighter, you're only getting good at 3 skills. As opposed to a Wizard or a Druid or a Cleric who put their points into their main stat and become decent at 5 skills as a result. Whether martial or spellcaster, all of these classes get 2 proficiencies to start. But by nature spellcasters will be skilled at more things than the martials will be because their main stats are better for more things. So it feels like being a martial makes you only good at fighting single enemies while spellcasters get to be good at fighting multiple enemies, getting over impassable obstacles, and many different kinds of skill checks. Which brings me to my second reason.
Spellcasters are actually just as good or better at single target damage than martial characters. The average damage for a failed save on Meteor Swarm is about 50% more than the average damage for 8 successful hits with a greatsword as a Fighter using Action Surge.
Meteor Swarm: 20d6(rolls of 3)+20d6(rolls of 4) = 140
8 Greatsword Attacks with 20 Strength: 16d6(rolls of 3 and 4) + 40 = 96
"But that's a 9th level spell vs Action Surge. Of course the 9th level spell is more powerful."
Let's compare instead a mid level Wizard vs a mid level Barbarian using the Comprehensive Damage Per Round Calculator.
Wizard lvl 12
First round animate object as a 6th lvl spell vs. ac 17
- dmg output 48.3
Second and third round animate object + 2 castings of Cone of Cold
- dmg output 78.3*2
Total damage for a lvl 12 wizard in 3 rounds: 204.9
Barbarian lvl 12
Human barbarian, 20 str, PaM, GWM, a +1 glaive vs. ac 17
+5 to hit (10-5 from GWM)
First round bonus action rage and 2 reckless attacks
1d10+1(Glaive)+5(str)+3(rage)+10(GWM)
- dmg output 36.3
Second and third round
glaive attack and bonus action attack with the end.
- dmg output 52.1*2
Total damage for a lvl 12 barbarian in 3 rounds: 140.5
As you can see, the Wizard handily outstrips the Barbarian. And we even gave the Barbarian a magic item and feats that time. Spellcasting classes are capable of outputting just as much or more single target damage as a martial class. The argument that is often made after this is that a martial class can continue to output this throughout the course of a day whereas a spellcaster has to use many resources that they can only get back later, but I contest this by saying most people don't have that many encounters per day and that while a martial can sustain this damage over the course of several rounds, most encounters will not last long that long anyways. All the enemies will be dead before a martial can stack up enough hits to match what the spellcaster has already done. Even if we do assume multiple rests and encounters over a day, the Wizard can use Arcane Recovery to get back the 6th level spell slot they just used. So they're still probably just fine for the next encounter.
So for those two reasons, I present the case that martials truly are left in the dust by spellcasters in almost every regard. That's the context for this. But this isn't just me crying because I'm a power gamer who wants to be OP. More than just the mathematics of it, I feel that there is a power fantasy is left almost entirely unfulfilled for martial characters.
What is it that makes warrior characters in movies and stories stand out, look cool, and feel powerful?
What does Captain America do? https://youtu.be/oRwFd1G6_U4?t=42
What does The Punisher do? https://youtu.be/01SYT5MPsHw?t=28
What does The Bride in Kill Bill do? https://youtu.be/a3aFv8IQb4s?t=319
Neo and Trinity do? https://youtu.be/NgAmX8GRwDw?t=57
Aragorn? (the most classic of all fantasy warrior archetypes) https://youtu.be/wSgeEH-Zwbk?t=3
Thor? (yes, even though he uses magic I still argue he's a martial character because of the way that he primarily engages in physical combat) https://youtu.be/-mHaq88BAV4?t=131
Ip Man? https://youtu.be/Kv9ygN2B8WU?t=97
John Wick? https://youtu.be/SamAItb8L58?t=86
Or John Wick? https://youtu.be/0L9SzBANF0w?t=264
Or what about John Wick? https://youtu.be/ElZ9y6l9KhI
A common theme with all of these characters is that they can fight many opponents at once and still win. Whether outnumbered by a handful or outnumbered by a hundred, they make a real contest out of something that would and should make instant losers out of anybody else. When they do it by themselves, they're badass. When they do it in the middle of a battlefield, their martial prowess inspires the common soldiers around them. This is all part of the fantasy of being a powerful non-magic fighting character. I put in John Wick three times because the whole draw of his character is that he's so hyper-competent at killing that he can take down entire organizations of enemies by himself. Even in a world of assassins and professional killers, they consider him their Boogeyman. And this character was so popular it spawned a franchise that thusfar has made more than $500 million dollars at the box office. But the part where he has a 1v1 with the bad guy is not what makes us like him. It's arguably the most underwhelming part of the first John Wick movie. Being able to fight many enemies is often cooler than fighting a single skilled enemy.
https://youtu.be/WAwl1mprHZI?t=153
Take this clip from the movie Hero as a prime example that shows both ends of the spectrum. In the first half of the scene, two people are fighting their way through a literal army on their own and winning. In the second half of the scene, there is a duel between two swordmasters. And while the duel exhibits great skill, it is not the more impressive half of the scene. To put it another way, the thing that makes you think Broken Sword is skilled is not that he duels the Emperor. Rather, it's the other way around. You believe that the Emperor is skilled because he is capable of fighting Broken Sword, a man who just cut his way through an entire army with the help of only one other person.
https://youtu.be/fLxSRdnGucA
The pinnacle of a martial character's "cool factor" is not the ability to be able to participate in skilled single combat against someone of equal skill, but to be outnumbered so dramatically that there should be no chance of winning, and yet they can and do anyways. The odds and logic of the situation tell you that it is impossible. But they accomplish the impossible with nothing but the swiftness of their sword.
Now, don't get me wrong, one on one fights definitely are cool. But what can take an entire scene to establish that competence can be established in seconds using a battle in which the hero is heavily outnumbered. They are cool in different ways, one being naturally more drawn out than the other, but it's important to have both. If you're only limited to one or the other but not both, that kind of sucks.
https://youtu.be/xT66YPk0Q5w?t=190
https://youtu.be/jx9Phl04VSQ?t=905
Back to D&D, it is not possible to be this kind of character as a martial. Firstly, due to the mathematics and action economy of the system, it is always more efficient to put all of your damage onto a single target because it's hard to spread out. Secondly because you are limited in the number of attacks you can make, that puts a hard limit on the number of enemies you can kill per turn. 20th level Fighter with 4 attacks? Barring specific subclass abilities or feats, it's literally impossible to exceed killing that number of enemies. Even with feats, you only max out at 5 attacks (using the bonus action attack from Great Weapon Master) on your turn without using Action Surge. If you are outnumbered 100 to 1, how long do you think a 20th level martial character could last? Say you're a 20th level Fighter against 100 Goblins, no Great Weapon Master feat. Assuming you hit with 100% accuracy and kill every one of them in one shot and use both of your Action Surges, it will take you 23 turns to kill them all. And for each one of your turns, they can also make their turn, surrounding you on all sides and attacking you 8 times a turn in response. For ease of calculation, if you had 18 AC wearing non-magical plate armor, Mob Combat rules (found on DMG page 250) assume you are statistically likely to take 12 damage per turn. 252 damage (using average damage) over 21 turns of keeping you surrounded. If you have enemies that aren't CR 1/4 against a 20th level character, say 100 CR 1/2 Thugs, they could make two attacks each, that turns into 16 times per turn and that turns into 30 damage per turn. 630 damage over 21 turns. If the Fighter had 20 Constitution and maximum health rolls (10 on a d10) at every level, they would have 300 hit points. They would barely survive against the goblins. They would not survive against the thugs. That's not even including the possibility of being attacked from range with shortbows and crossbows and such. Eventually, you will lose. And it won't even really be close.
We think these characters should be capable of surviving situations like these, after all at 20th level any Fighter should be a legendary character based on their prowess and skill. But the way the game works, they just aren't capable of surviving.
What is the power fantasy of a spellcaster? To be so powerful that they can bend reality to their will? To cast magics that affect the very fabric of existence? Could a 20th level spellcaster survive a 1 v 100? Quite handily I think actually. How about a 1 v 1000? Well, given that Meteor Swarm allows you to make explosions of 40d6 damage in a 40 foot radius in 4 different locations, you could actually hit 900 creatures at once if they were all bunched up enough (each meteor can hit 225 creatures at peak efficiency). Turn that down to a 1 v 100 real quick. Mathematically, it's entirely possible simply because they can deal enough damage at a fast enough rate combined with the myriad of spells they can use for damage mitigation (Shield, Blade Ward, Blink, Stoneskin, Mirror Image, Blur, etc.)
Many might argue that this is fair, as it is unrealistic for a single person to be able to fight 100 people at once without magic and win. That could never happen in real life. But then I would counter with this:
Aren't we playing Dungeons and Dragons?
Is it realistic for someone to be able to pull meteors out of orbit with their mind? Or open up gates to other dimensions because they figured out how to tear holes in reality? Or to have discovered a word that is so powerful, so forbidden, that simply speaking it can cause another person to drop dead on the spot? Or to raise an undead army of skeletons? Why does realism become the limit for a Fighter when the Wizard's entire existence is predicated on breaking the rules of our reality?
Almost any spellcaster's power fantasy can come true. If you want to be someone who causes explosions on the battlefield, you can do that. If you want to be someone who turns illusions into reality, you can do that. If you want to be a seer who prophesies the future, you can do that. If you want to take over the world with thousands of full powered spellcasting clones of yourself, you can even do that. You are more limited by your own imagination and creativity than the actual rules of the game. But the simple fantasy of "I want to be able to fight a bunch of guys at once" is out of reach of the martial character, despite the fact that it's supposed to be the primary thing they're good at.
To summarize and conclude, I am of the opinion that the most common image of a skilled fantasy warrior is exemplified in their ability to fight a large number of enemies at once or in quick succession, not their ability to handily defeat a single opponent. The biggest design flaw and biggest disappointment for martial characters is their inability to fulfill this fantasy. Their single target damage is mechanically what they are known for, but I think what martial players like me really want more than anything is to be able to fight many enemies at once. I believe one of the ultimate power fantasies for a martial character is to be able to fearlessly charge forward into any number of enemies with full confidence of victory until a suitable challenger approaches. If Dungeons and Dragons is a game of wish fulfillment, the wishes of martial players like me cannot be fulfilled as it is currently designed.
https://youtu.be/qLJMDDxt408?t=25
I've been looking at old playtest packets for 5th edition and I found out some interesting things. The 11th level Hunter Ranger feature, Multiattack used to be something that any martial character had a choice to take at some point. Whirlwind Attack was available to be learned by Fighters and Monks, and Volley was on the list of Fighter maneuvers that could be learned. It seems to me that the reason that martial characters are so subpar in comparison now is that they were watered down across the board, mechanics that used to be able to be used by many are currently sequestered into individual subclasses.
Now, to be clear, I'm not really looking for a "solution" to this problem. At least not as far as 5th edition is concerned. The issues are too fundamental, too rooted in the core of the system to solve without an egregious amount of homebrewing. But I did want to put this out there as a topic of discussion to see if others in the community find validity in my idea. Is the problem of "linear fighters vs quadratic wizards" just an issue of efficiency, versatility, and mathematics? Or is the true problem that martial characters lack the ability to fulfill what is probably one of the core wishes of people who want to be warriors in fantasy settings?
edits: many typos I spotted after the fact -_-
Edit 2:
There's a lot of common responses I keep seeing pop up here that I want to address here in the main post.
"This is a game of resource management, you should just have more encounters per day to balance it out!"
First of all, this isn't something that a player can do themselves. This is entirely dependent on a DM and it's much more work for them to do so and be accommodating. They have to balance every encounter. It isn't as simple as just "having more encounters." Someone has to do that work.
Second of all, I mentioned this, but at a certain point it just becomes a slog when you're being constantly worn down every day just to give enough time for turtle martials to catch up to rabbit spellcasters. I don't know about you, but even as a martial, I wouldn't have fun doing this all the time.
Third of all, it completely ignores the point of my post. I don't care about being able to mathematically catch up to the wizard over the course of a day, I want to feel badass in my own right and I want to be able to do it whenever I want. It doesn't matter that a Wizard can cast Meteor Swarm once per day and I can use Action Surge once/twice per short rest. The point is that I use it and I'm done. And until I get that next short rest, I'm just as weak as a Wizard. Fighters can "recover" more quickly than spellcasters, but in the actual encounter? In the actual fight? They have less resources that they can burn through more quickly than spellcasters. This is the crux of the problem here. Without rests, there is nothing that makes a Fighter better than a Wizard. Anything I can do, he can do better, 🎶 he can do anything better than me. 🎶
It's basically the same thing as saying a Wizard can finish a marathon with their spells but then they'll be really tired when they're done. You can finish the marathon too if you take a few hour long rests along the way. Why can't I just finish the marathon with my own strength? Am I at least faster at sprinting the hundred meter dash? No, the Wizard is faster at that too, but you'll be able to do another hundred meter dash in an hour or so. He still can too, he'll just be marginally slower than you.
Do you see the problem with this argument yet?
"Martial characters should be getting magic items to make them better and then they'll be as good as spellcasters."
But spellcasters don't need magic items. This only supports the argument that martial classes are handicapped in comparison to spellcasters. It's essentially saying that spellcasters can stand on their own but martial classes need a magic item wheelchair to be able to keep up. Do you see the problem here?
Why is it too much to ask that martial classes can stand at the same level as spellcasters through just their own class features?
"Cleave is a really good tool."
And I agree. But last time I asked my DM, he said no. Maybe I'll get to ask him again, but I respect his rulings because he's my friend and I respect him.
"It sounds like the 5th edition system is not for you. You should try something else, like Pathfinder 2e!"
I would if I could but my group seems happy playing 5th edition. As much as this post is a huge complaint rant, not everything is about me. And I won't DM a Pathfinder game because frankly, I'm not good at DMing. I think other people have less fun when I'm behind the screen and I think I have less fun when I'm behind the screen. I wish it weren't the case, but it seems to be the one I'm stuck with. I just don't have a mind made for DMing.
Please be civil in the comments and follow the rules.
submitted by YSBawaney to dndnext [link] [comments]

M1 Plus Review

Intro:
Bought into M1 Plus from a $60/yr Promotion 2 months ago. I had an investment account already, and even one of the first spend accounts. I had declined the offer for M1 Plus at $125/yr.
This is a first review of M1 Plus after two months of use and a bit of a dive into the value of its features from a financial and user experience point of view.
Value:
This is a pretty simple one. Do the math. The interest vs. your other checking account multiplied by the amount of cash you’d be keeping in there for M1 Spend. If you’re borrowing from M1 too, the 1.5% difference (or whatever difference there is between M1 Borrow and your next best offer) multiplied by the amount of money you’d like to borrow. If all these add up to greater than whatever annual fee is offered, go for it.
Otherwise, it’d be a very expensive metal card. But if 4 waived ATM fees go a long way to save you money, that should be worth considering too, however, there are tons of cards and products that’ll waive said fees, some even for unlimited transactions and no upfront cost. Just because M1 is offering this benefit as part of a premium package doesn’t mean it’s impossible to find for free somewhere else.
XP:
It is a great experience. I constantly invest lumps of $500 into my portfolio all the time. It’s quick, easy, and immediately fulfilling. Not that other brokerages don’t do this. But M1 is clearly focused on showing you your long term progress on your investment goals. It uses a money weighted return formula so that you know how much your capital has been making you to easily compare to the return of bank accounts and investments. There’s a reason their product is called “Invest” and not “Trade”, more on that later. But this means it’s primarily suited for this purpose. During the Covid crash, I took to Robinhood to place my Put Options on the S&P because high frequency derivatives trading and M1 basically speak different languages. All this to say, it feels amazing to watch your investments accounts slowly creep up as you continue to dollar cost average into the market, but this has some drawbacks.
Pies. While fun and easy to build, mix and match, they are not a very common mechanic to implement on amateur portfolios. Selling stocks can be quite the process on M1, and the platform will try its darnest to discourage you from making any but the most basic adjustments to your portfolio. Its really only suited for the “set it and forget it” mindset, which is not to say you can’t mess around with your money as you please, but it’s just so perfect for investing and watching your money grow with a long time horizon. The plots will show you your progress and encourage you to keep a regular deposit schedule. But try trading into and out of a stock, or a set amount of shares, or even thinking about playing with derivatives and other financial instruments: slim pickings.
The numbers make a lot of sense, too. I’ve been investing for about 5 years now, and my latest craze has been leverage. I’ve read about how the optimal leverage ratio for the S&P on average was 2.0 or 100% levered up, and looked up the historical comparisons to corroborate. Shopping around for margin accounts and available capital, it’s tough to beat the 2% rates at the moment. I’ve been slowly levering up during the latest market rally to great effect and the low interest really pumps up those numbers. Having this much cheap capital, not just for leverage, but also for life is worth more than just the time value of money. I would make the point that this is made even more valuable by having all your financial services on the same platform, as you really get to do with your money as you please and move it around to withdraw it to your hearts content.
My real issue was with Spend. Not a problem with the product but myself, in trying to justify the annual fee. I weighed how much money it would make sense to keep in Spend as opposed to an online savings account. To keep cash a couple of months ago, it made more sense to opt for ally or marcus as they were offering close to 1.55% on cash. But as their rates have plummeted, getting 1.0% on a CHECKING account has been an absolute godsend in this crazy economy. This account works for just about anything with the notable exception of checks... in a checking account which I suspect is the reason for the “Spend” branding the product was marketed with. When it’s hard to even find 1% on a savings account, a 1% APY on checking is no-worries approach to cash investment.
Ultimately, having all of these balances displayed together on the Transfers tab is huge in terms of consumer experience. This, however, should not be a replacement for true “Dashboard” that could show an overview of all your money moves and account balances.
Ideas:
M1 Trade. Admittedly, I do see how this can be very contrary to the philosophy, product and experience that M1 has worked to create. That being said, thinking that your customer will always prefer to have their money invested into automatically allocated pies is a little short-sighted.
Opening a much more DIY Trading product on M1 would of course have them incur tons of costs in handling and verifying transactions of all the individual financial, but many places already offer such services for free, some are even profitable at it. An M1 Trade product would also need integrating the Invest product because regardless of what you’re doing on the platform, you still consider your money your investments and want to see it all together. Pies and individual Buys would have to play nice together, and that does sound like a difficult endeavor.
I keep a couple of accounts with different mixtures of my pies for all my purposes. I also handle the investments for a few of my family members, which will become relevant shortly. You can obviously set up as many accounts as you wish and move money into them as you desire, but this can get you into some warmer water. If two of your pies hold most the same securities and you just want to have a different pie for a different account, you’ll have to call up to pause trading so that your pies have a chance to get to know each other and not force you to sell and buy right back into the same assets just to incur the taxes. It’s a bit of a hassle, and I would argue, on purpose.
For Pies themselves, I often find myself wanting to make small tweaks to pies but then quickly let it go as removing slices would automatically trigger a massive sell off that incurs taxes. From a conversation with tech support, I gathered that the best way to do this was simply pause trading on your account, and change the pie you want all your money to go into. Editing pies is fine and easy, but completely swapping a pie for another one led me to believe that it would sell put of all my holdings even if the old and new pie had many of those same holdings. If this is me being stupid, good, if it’s a gap in features, I hope M1 lets you simply swap a pie for any other and gives you the option either sell everything, sell only what is 0 in the second pie, or sell nothing and simply continue aiming for the allocation of the new pie without touching your previous investments.
Lastly, an iPad app. I’m a big fan of the iPad and the iPad Pro in particular. I’ve found myself using it far more than my laptop which is now strictly reserved for long work sessions (I write and edit for a YouTube Channel) and watching content in groups of people (15” MBP Speakers are the stuff of legend). But for anything else, I subconsciously grab the iPad. It’s annoying to have the website be the best M1 experience on the iPad. I understand that making a compelling iPad investing app is its own mountain to climb, but a lot of the Mobile app’s functionality can be ported over without too much of a hassle. Charles Schwab has an iPad app based 99% on the iPhone app that still performs all the same functions, just on the bigger screen, which is the whole point of the iPad in the first place. While it’s not a top shelf iPad app (there are only a select few) the Schwab app is lovely and I’m begging M1 for anything that doesn’t force me to use my iPad in portrait mode to use a blown up iPhone app. Again, this app doesn’t have to be a world beater, just a decent looking and bigger version of the iPhone app that would go a long way to boost the M1 customer experience.
Closing Remarks:
Obligatory YMMV disclosure: it’s about the math, I won’t bore you with my own, but I was just over the line when it made sense for me to opt into the $60/yr promo.
That being said, M1’s value has been a lot about the experience. The future of finance is free. No brokerage should be making money on transaction commissions or administrative fees, it’s a relic from the before times when you needed people who knew people on wall street to do your trading. At this point its not even worth any perceived convenience.
The clever ones reading this will point out that, while true, many brokerages already offer a wide variety of free services. Many of them, even, that M1 doesn’t offer.
The true spirit of this review is to express my personal opinion on the value of M1 Plus and how the customer experience is its edge in the ebrokerage market. Rates are competitive, but it is a brand new way to consider finance and its role in your life and society.
TL;DR
Spend is pretty competitive for a checking account, and as long as you’re not using checks too often, its a no brainer for anyone with close to $10,000 in cash just sitting somewhere.
Invest is beautiful, but the free version is exactly as good, more windows means very little with the limited trading you’re allowed to do anyway.
Borrow is brilliant, hella flexible and competitive rates.
8/10 Would recommend to a friend.
submitted by TomasFCampos to M1Finance [link] [comments]

Anti bioterror play for huge long term gains

Thesis: SIGA Technologies, an anti-bioterror pharmaceutical company, will double their stock price in a year and triple or quadruple it in two years. They are in an incredibly strong financial position: zero debt, future US government purchases that may be greater than their market cap, and low expenses for operations and forward research. They also have amazing future growth prospects as foreign governments will buy their meds to prepare for future pandemics. Their drugs treat smallpox which is both more contagious and deadly (IFR ~30%!) than the Wuhan plague.
Do you think absolutely no political or military leader will learn their lesson about pandemic preparedness? Do you think business leaders are going to put the pressure down since the cost of unpreparedness is orders of magnitude greater than preparedness? That’s what this play is all about.
The play: Buy $SIGA stocks and hold for 2 years.

Quick facts

Market cap: $560 million
Style: Value, when compared to other biotechs
Products: Their primary product is an FDA approved oral antiviral (TPOXX) that treats all orthopox viruses (e.g. the dreaded smallpox). They are currently developing additional products for IV and pediatric treatment, another small molecule drug for treating orthopox viruses, and are developing therapeutics that use orthopox viruses for delivery of anticancer antigens.
How SIGA makes money: 1) US government contracts to supply the Strategic National Stockpile, 2) US government contracts for research, 3) sales to foreign governments and potentially private parties. Note that their business doesn't care about prevailing market conditions and all of these are multi-year contracts.
Debt: $0. They paid off an $86 MM loan in March.
Cash holdings: $77.4 MM
Total assets: $118.6 MM
Net cash flow 2019: -$18.2 MM, as discussed below, 2019 was a transition year between govt contracts hence the low income. They made $400MM from closing contracts in 2018.
Net cash flow 2020, my estimate: +$53 MM, see cash flow section below for how I got this figure

How this play can win

- The US govt through BARDA accelerates their purchasing of TPOXX to be and look more prepared for future pandemics.
- Foreign governments purchase TPOXX for their own pandemic preparedness. Canada announced an intent to purchase in December. Others are likely to follow. IMO, the stock will hit $10 when 3 additional countries announce purchasing and $20 when they have a network of 10 purchasing countries plus additional research. The US gets a discount on TPOXX because they funded the initial research, others will likely pay three times as much per dose.
- The US govt offers much more research funding to SIGA to design antivirals for other possible pandemic viruses. 10 years ago they had a small BARDA contract to look into antivirals for Lassa fever, a nasty rat flu boogaloo. They might renew or add to this type of research.
- TPOXX gets additional approvals for IV use and prophylactic use (i.e. give to people in contact with infected, first responders or first city) and US buys more. They recently received a new $23 MM contract for developing this use.
- A larger pharmaceutical company announces that they will purchase SIGA for $10-$15 share in a year. SIGA already has connections with Pfizer.
- Large amounts of additional income help them pump with stock buybacks or fat dividends. I am totally convinced they are going to buyback or spit dividends in a year from now.

Risks

- Foreign governments don’t purchase TPOXX or don’t approve its safety/efficacy and rely on the vaccine for smallpox (but 1 in 5 people can’t take the vax and lots of deaths in first wave without TPOXX).
- US govt does not add to stockpile, only keeps refreshing expired TPOXX.
- US govt does not invest in additional pandemic preparedness research/invests only in competitors.
- TPOXX may later be discovered to have a severe side-effect. (Oral formula is already FDA approved though).
- There’s more risks listed in their 10-K, but I do not think they are significant enough to list here.

Resources for your own DD

Do your own research. Always.
Latest 10-K: https://investor.siga.com/node/13196/html
Latest 10-Q: https://investor.siga.com/node/13251/html
2020 Q1 earnings call: https://www DOT fool DOT com/earnings/call-transcripts/2020/05/07/siga-technologies-inc-siga-q1-2020-earnings-call-t.aspx
2019 Q4 earnings call: https://www DOT seeking NO SPACE alpha DOT com/article/4330138-siga-technologies-inc-siga-ceo-phil-gomez-on-q4-2019-results-earnings-call-transcript
Reddit doesn't like the above websites. Sorry for the garbled links
Press releases: https://investor.siga.com/press-releases
Smallpox wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smallpox

Detailed DD

I’m going to start off this section by answering the arguments you’ve already thought of.
Who gives a shit about some old timey disease?
The world militaries. Smallpox is a nasty disease. It's basic reproduction number, R0, is between 3-6, like the Wuhan coronavirus. It similarly has a 7-14 day lag time before symptoms show, although it is not known to be infectious for the first several days.
Smallpox is also exceptionally deadly, ranging from 15-30% fatality rate depending upon the strain and in children and the elderly can reach a 75% mortality rate. Survivors are usually permanently scarred and may have life-long complications from the disease. A smallpox epidemic would actually make corona look like "just the flu."
Infection around day 20 mark. Bangladesh, 1973.
Bioterrorism or biowarfare with smallpox is a massive threat to the military and people and an obvious first choice of weapon for a bioterrorist. Careful governments will plan for it.
Isn't smallpox eradicated?
Yes. But. 1) There are still many samples across the world in government labs across the world. 2) The genome exists on computers in said labs. 3) Many other orthopox viruses exist such as cowpox and monkeypox. Monkeypox in particular has had more cases in subsaharan Africa in the last few years. There have even been small outbreaks in the US, UK, and Singapore within the last 20 years.
What about vaccines?
  1. Maybe you recall that in the 1790’s Edward Jenner discovered the first vaccine by giving people the milder cowpox to prevent smallpox. The state of the smallpox vaccine has not evolved significantly since then. The modern vaccine uses a two-prong poker to deliver a live smallpox virus that has been engineered to be very weak. However, it is still a real virus that can causes symptoms or spread the disease to others. One in five Americans have underlying conditions that prevent them from receiving this vaccine due to the symptoms it causes.
  2. What do you do when smallpox starts spreading rapidly? You need to be able to treat the potentially 100s of thousands of people who will be infected before the immunization takes effect. The US is well-prepared with the vaccine having 300 million doses, nearly enough for every American. But you need a treatment as part of the defense strategy.
  3. TPOXX is in the process of being approved as a prophylactic. I.e. if smallpox were to spread then people could be given both the vaccine and TPOXX at the same time to make sure they don’t get sick if they were exposed prior to vaccination. Prophylactic treatment could be extremely important to first-responders, military, and people in the most badly affected zones.

Fundamentals

I am no expert in reading 10-K filings, but SIGA's 10-K is not too complicated. I encourage you to do your own DD before making this play and if you've never read a 10-K filing before this is a great one to cut your teeth on. SIGA only has one key product line and their debt is uncomplicated (nonexistent); the only tricky parts is following the government money.

Balance sheet from most recent 10-Q
Balance sheet
So the things to look at here are:
  1. SIGA has plenty of cash. Enough for two years operating expenses without any sort of austerity. Even if the economic downturn affected their business model, they would weather it easily.
  2. They have $16 MM in inventory. That’s mostly TPOXX they’ve already manufactured. This is great because it means they will have low costs for meeting the current BARDA contract supply request for this year and that if they get more orders they can dedicate their supply chain to filling them.
  3. No debt. There’s no risk of them going tits up soon. Unlike your other favorite plays against highly-leveraged trash companies (looking at you Zillow), SIGA can ride out a credit crunch with ease.
  4. Stockholders’ equity aka book value. At a price to book of 5:1 this is a cheap biotech company, one of the reasons I see them as a value buy. Also of note, their property includes patents on TPOXX in virtually every country.

Cash flow
In 2019, SIGA took a $7 million loss while in 2018 they punched a $422 million gain. How did that happen? Their entire business runs on multi-year govt contracts. 2018 saw an older BARDA contract end with the orders completely filled to stuff the strategic stockpile. 2019 was a transition year.They have a new contract with BARDA to replenish expiring TPOXX and research then purchase new formulations for IV and pediatric use. So, looking at their 201910-K their earnings look abysmal, but their forward looking earnings are much better given their recent news releases.
Let’s look more at that contract since it is a principal revenue source. SIGA’s most recent 19C contract gives BARDA (Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority) the ability to purchase up to $602.5MM worth of product. The base contract guarantees $51.7 MM and BARDA announced the exercise of an additional $127.1 MM in purchasing for the next year as of a few weeks ago. Due to drug expiration and future preparedness, my opinion is that BARDA will exercise all of the purchasing options over the next 10 years.
Here’s my 2020 cash flow estimate, I am inexperienced at this sort of analysis. Pro 10-K readers, please give me some criticism.
-$24 MM from expenses for sales, admin, research, services ,patents. Average of last 2 years -10% because research activity is shut down
-$7 MM from additional costs of terminating loan. 10-Q
+$2 MM from part 1 of Canadian order. Press release
+$75 MM from three quarters of $101 MM exercise of BARDA contract. Estimated because they will supply TPOXX the next three quarters of 2020 and Q1 2021, press release
-$3 MM additional costs to fulfill orders. Estimate from BARDA contract’s allocation for supply costs
+$10 MM from contracts for research. Estimate by Q1 research revenue x 4
? a new $23 MM research contract with the department of defense was announced in June, unclear when they will receive the money at this time
$0 from stock buybacks and dividends, they have never had a dividend, but did do $800k in buybacks last year. They might have paid down their debt to put them in a position to do a lot more buybacks, so this is subject to change.
Total: +$53 MM
I expect the next few years to be cash flow positive now that they are out of the development phase and into the deployment phase. As they get additional international buyers they will also need to service their expiring stockpiles. This puts them at a forward price to earnings estimate of 10:1, still a value play in the current environment.
The high future cash flow is why I expect them to start pumping dividends or buybacks in a year. Since their research activities are primarily supported by the US government, they won't have other useful activities for the cash other than to return it to shareholders. Also, the guys who founded SIGA in the 90's probably want to retire on a fat dividend pretty soon. Dividends and buybacks are a big factor in how many analysts calculate stock prices so either development will push the share price up a lot.

International Sales
This is where SIGA make us gigatendies. The US sales are the bread and butter that will keep them afloat for years to come. International sales are where they grow. Their contracts with the US government let them sell TPOXX at about $350 per course because they funded the initial research, whereas Canada is paying about $950 per course giving SIGA a massive estimated 95% margin.
Let's see who might be interested in buying TPOXX as the China flu crisis unwinds: we've got most of western Europe/NATO--UK, France,Italy, Austria, Sweden, Switzerland, Germany, Spain; Pacific countries wary of being in the China sphere--Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Australia,Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia; and wealthy Middle Eastern countries that need to hedge against instability--Israel, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar; a smattering of other countries getting wise to viral threats--Russia, India,Brazil, South Africa, Mexico. That's a lot of potential buyers and it will only take a few for SIGA's price to shoot up. Also note that SIGA does not market internationally themselves, they are partnered with Meridian, a Pfizer subsidiary, for international sales.
SIGA also has an excellent moat internationally. They have patents for TPOXX and its analogs almost everywhere but China. Of course, there are still risks associated with international expansion, but the upside potential is yuuge. Let's hear it from the horse's mouth and see what SIGA had to say on their 2019 Q4 conference call:
Now let's discuss the international markets. The pursuit of international sales for oral TPOXX is a key focus for us at SIGA. Our partnership with Meridian Medical Technologies that we announced last June has been excellent. However as I've said many times the sales cycle is long for international government procurement of these types of products and each country has its own set of internal dynamics. ... I have been asked why we do not provide a country-by-country update on sales progress. We do not comment on specific progress with countries for two main reasons. First, we respect the confidentiality of our customers who would not want their deliberations to become public. And second, we would not want to signal to competitors which countries may be undergoing an expansion in their spending for biodefense. With that context in mind, we are pleased to share a progress report regarding the Canadian military, who announced in December and intend to issue contracts to support a Health Canada, regulatory filing and thep urchase of up to 15,825 courses of oral TPOXX for the Canadian military. A procurement order of this size would represent about 25%of the active military forces in Canada. Although this is a relatively modest number of courses it is precedent for military preparedness by a U.S. NATO ally.
What can we gather from that? They've got multiple sales in the works, but are keeping mum about it. Also, that it takes time to cut through government tape and announce these sales. Here's the single largest risk for this play: that it takes too long for international contracts to be announced. For this reason, I recommend buying stocks and not calls. The near term future is too unpredictable.

Research Activities
SIGA's main drug, oral TPOXX, is already completely FDA approved as safe in humans and effective in animals. A quirk of their niche is that since smallpox is eradicated, they can't ethically test the drug for effectiveness in humans. This helps their bottom line because they basically get to skip some of the trials of a typical drug development cycle.
SIGA's most important upcoming products are TPOXX for IV, liquid pediatric, and prophylactic use. Due to the current pandemic, all human trials are postponed, but the barriers for these trials are quite low. They only need to demonstrate human safety for the alternate ROA drugs. For prophylactic TPOXX, SIGA needs to demonstrate that TPOXX does not interfere with immunity acquisition from the smallpox vaccine. That way a potentially exposed person can both be treated and vaccinated at the same time. If they fail to meet these research goals, then I doubt the BARDA contract will be exercised for full value. Because of the delay in these results due to corona, I doubt that they threaten the trade that I'm proposing.
Orthopox viruses to deliver cancer therapeutics and older Lassa fever antivirals. I honestly don't know enough about their activities in these areas to make a comment. I think they are irrelevant to the base play, but could provide some surprise upside if there was a development.

Insider trading
The execs did more selling than buying last year which is perhaps bearish, but their most recent move was to buy a lot of stock in December after announcing the Canada deal. They sold stock at ~$5.80 in early 2019. Now, they're holding even though it is past $6. I think the COVID pandemic has massively increased SIGA’s value and their key people are holding at a price where they previously sold knowing that a lot more cash is coming in. I think there's also some possibility of acquisition at higher share price, being debt free makes them attractive to a buyer--just pick up all the shares, no liabilities to clean up.

Positions
I have 5% of my IRA in SIGA and a couple of long dated $10 calls (volume is shit FYI) in my funny money account.
Thank you for reading my novel.
Disclaimer: Just because I can write two coherent paragraphs on a play does not mean I know what I'm doing. Do your own due diligence.
submitted by hdigga to pennystocks [link] [comments]

DefiantHermit's Should You Pull? Yuna Banner - Aug 24

Hello everyone, DefiantHermit here for another instalment of the SYP series, today featuring Ludger Yuna!

Yuna

Element: Wind Type: Artes Role: Debuffer
Overview:
Yuna finally gets her unit release and she’s… almost a carbon copy of Ludger. Stat-wise, she comes with high HP and DEF, but an atrocious ATK stat (lowest among SSRs) (30,000 HP | 1,950 ATK | 3,000 DEF). Bulk is pretty on point, so she’s quite resilient, but don’t expect her to be dishing out any meaningful damage.
Her awakening skill provides an unrestricted +6% DEF buff to allies, alongside a +16% ATK to wind units at 20 hits. Once again a split skill, but with more of an offensive focus. 6% DEF feels really shitty compared to the standard 10%, but the ATK buff is very nice for your Wind team.
As far as skills go,
Arte Modifier Hits Type Cooldown Effect
Crossweave 130% 2 ST 2 turns 100% Chance to Decrease 10% ATK for 2 Turns
Thunderbolt Stitch 160% 8 ST 4 turns 100% Chance to Decrease 10% DEFfor 2 Turns
Normal Attack 100% 2 ST - -
As you can see, this is almost identical to Ludger’s skillset, with some minor differences in hitcount and an increase in the ATK break (5% -> 10%). These skills have below average modifiers and, coupled with Yuna’s low ATK, are solely meant as debuffs.
Her Mystic Arte completes the kit as a 250% -> 350%, 8 -> 9 Hit ST skill, costing 190 OL. Once again very similar to Ludger in terms of modifiers, with reduced hitcount, but 30 less OL as well. 190 leads to a guaranteed turn 3 cast on Water raids, but she’s 12 OL shy on off-elements with the bonus from her ascension board, meaning she requires some assistance to achieve consistency.
So basically we have a consistent debuffer that can also output an okay amount of hits (16~17) during break turns, with no investment required on Water and with a simple OL stone everywhere else.
Elemental Context:
Wind is becoming a packed element, with 3 new SSRs released aside from the initial cast. That said, there are no debuffers that fulfil the same role as Yuna there yet, so she’ll definitely have her niche.
While her ATK is lower, we know Ludger is used, even outside of his element, so it’s not too farfetched to say that Yuna will be used, at least on Water content. That said, I’m still sceptical, simply because I don’t think the low hitcount and terrible ATK is worth a slot over other dedicated debuffers or better hitgens, even if off-element.
That said, we get a free SR copy from story, with her memoria also available for shard exchange. This actually makes her free copy better than the SSR version, since you can instantly MLB her and make use of her great wind dmg boosting passive on the backline.
Off-Element Context:
The only situation I see someone using SSR Yuna over Ludger is if they don’t have Ludger themselves. 74% higher base ATK, with marginal bulk reduction; a typing that is usable in all raids without penalty and a more well-defined awakening skill.
And it’s not even just Ludger, really. S.Rutee does a much better job at offensive debuffing and will likely contribute more to the team in terms of damage as well (if you don’t have Yuna’s passive unlocked). Currently there are no real reasons to need the ATK debuff.
Memoria Stone:
If you thought the Ludger comparison was over, I got some news for ya lmao. Yuna stone has the exact same effect, giving 10% -> 20% Evasion with no restrictions, but with a defensive stat focus: double the HP, half the ATK, same DEF (16,000 HP | 650 ATK | 1,250 DEF).
Evasion stones are very powerful survivability tools, especially in arena. Denying not only damage, but also OL gain from a miss can significantly change tides of battle, but it obviously come at the cost of other effects.
For everywhere else, Evasion is still a tricky mechanic to evaluate. In raids, you’re much better off using strictly damaging or consistency stones (namely CritDamage and OL gain) because your main goal is to reach 25k contribution as fast as possible when aiding. On Tower it has a better case for itself, but it also has more competition vs straight bulk stones or even OL gains again.

Should You Pull?

Yuna is almost exactly like a Wind Ludger, but with 45% less ATK in trade for some extra bulk and a better ATK break. Ludger is considered a good unit because he can not only debuff on raids, but also contribute to your team’s damage, aside from having a neutral element.
Ludger is used in raids, so Yuna will also find a home, if you want to use her. That said, the free SR version is significantly more attractive for everyone but whales, as the value of her awakening skill more than compensates for the lack of an MA, as she won’t output relevant damage regardless.
This is an extremely safe skip, even if you like the assets, as you’re getting the SR version for free anyway. If you’re considering doing a few multies, do yourself a favor… don’t.
submitted by DefiantHermit to TalesOfCrestoria [link] [comments]

But but, orange man bad!

Fact check it!
What have POTUS and his cabinet accomplished?
Here you go..
submitted by pikcoolski to conspiracy [link] [comments]

Anyone using Ally Invest for $0 commissions + $.50 contracts?

I've been using TW for a while because Robinhood just didn't have the flexibility that I wanted. Has anyone used Ally Invest recently? I'm curious how their platform is. Also looks like they allow margin accounts, but I can't find a ton of detail on what the exact offerings are: interest rate, if naked options are allowed, limitations, etc.
submitted by lucasandrew to options [link] [comments]

Willster328 Unit Review: Benevolent Beauty Rem

What an appropriate name, for a beautiful unit. My goodness does BB Rem offer a lot. I'm so excited I just have to jump right in!

Overall Perspective

Rem is a Dual Wielding Mage, whose attacks despite being Magical in nature, hit as Physical. This can be confusing some so just to summarize: You still want to max MAG stat, but when they attack the nature of the attack is Physical. This is similar to Elly and Selphie who have MAG abilities that hit for Physical Damage. And the same for Xuan Wu who hits for Magic Damage despite it being a Physical Attack (his difference is that SPR determines the strength, not MAG).
An easy way to think of it:
Imagine her wielding two weapons that are imbued with Magic. So that when she strikes at stuff, even though she hits them with her weapons (physically attacking), the strength of her attack comes from the crazy magic in the weapons, thus doing a bunch of magical damage.
There's really three big upsides to units like this that make them a premium:
  1. They share Chain Families with other Physical or Hybrid units (Bolting Strike in this case)
  2. Although they can self imbue, they can be externally imbued as well since it's a Physical attack and not a Magic One. One of the Mage downsides is that they're locked to the Element of the Ability, whereas these Physical Magic Damagers can be imbued in any way
  3. They can equip Physical Killers which is a massive advantage to the Mages, who need "Magical Killers" for which there's far fewer selections.
Rem can T-Cast both Bolting Strike and CWA. The big difference between these two is that the BS attacks are Single Unit (and are stronger) while the CWA are AOE (and slightly weaker).
She has self imbues/imperils for Fire, Ice, and Lightning.
In terms of quick glances at passives, she has an inherent Dual Wield, resistance to Stop, Poison, and Silence, a 5% HP Lock (so she has a chance to survive lethal damage), 100% Boosts to Esper Stats, Double Evoke Damage, and 150% Phys/Magic Killers against Demons/Machines. PHEW I dont even think that's all of it.
Taking a quick segway, in terms of Demon/Machine killers, there are ample enough characters that come with 150% passives for them, but not all of them are popularly used. Just small note too, she also has an ability to increase killers of these by 50% to all allies also.
150% Demon Killer 150% Machine Killer
Wild Card Ace (Also Mag Killer) Wild Card Ace (Also Mag Killer)
DK Luneth (Also Mag Killer) 2B
Edward Elric King Edgar Figro
Firion A2
Gilgamesh (Also Mag Killer) Cloud (FFVII: AC)
Nagi (Also Mag Killer) Esther
Red XIII Gilgamesh (Also Mag Killer)
Yego (Also Mag Killer) Selphie (Also Mag Killer)
So sure, some of those names on there are viable characters for DV or other Current Content (Ed Elric, Selphie, Cloud) but by and large this is a selection that you don't see often, which makes it just a smidge more unique for Rem.
Rem also does a fair amount of support. She has a Cooldown that is an AOE Reraise, Curaga, Curaja, Re-Raise, and Raise Healing spells, and a Healing ability that is does double what the Curaga normally does. She also has MP Restore, can Cure/Remove all Status Ailments and Effects from allies. PHEW this is dense.
So yeah, not only is Rem an amazing Magical DPS that does Physical Damage for both BS and CWA on 3-elements, but has a full support kit as well.
Looking at her Imperil abilities:
Ability Imperil Other Notes
Firaga/Blizzaga/Thundaga MIS 90% for 3 turns T-Castable CWA, does damage, and Self-Imbues for any of the 3 elements picked
Cleansing Flame/Freeze/Lightning 90% for 6 turns T-Castable BS, does damage, and Self-Imbued for any of the 3 elements picked
Seraphim Strike (Cooldown) 120% for 4 turns T-Castable BS, does damage (a lot actually, 60x modifier)
True Seraphim Strike (Limit Break) 120% for 3 Turns Decreases all three elements for 3 turns, with Magic 60x modifier also
So lots of sources of potential imperils there, and the nice thing is that her imperils are also self-imbues. We saw this recently with Sterne/Kitone and how it really enables for them to ramp up damage quicker with not having to expend extra actions to do both.
Per the Wiki Rating Parameters, she currently sits neck and neck with Wild Card Ace atop the Mage DPS standings, and by a significant Damage Per Turn margin. They don't bring the same amount of Burst that the other Mages atop the list can, but their DPT is far higher. For context, the Mage under Rem, 4 Winds Physalis, does 38B DPT with a burst in there of 92B, whereas Rem does 47B DPT with a burst of 55B. So average damage per turn Rem does 25% more (10 Billion!) than Physalis does, just at the trade-off of the more massive burst.
That being said, let's dive right into the rotation, and I'll explain why I think there's something really cool about Rem's setup:
Skills Damage
Cleansing Imbue + Accelerate + Seraphim Strike 40,573,324,978
3x Flying Daggers++ 50,270,923,060
3x Flying Daggers+ 45,992,546,630
Accelerate + 2x Flying Daggers++ 46,849,674,675
2x Flying Daggers++ + Seraphim Strike 55,370,108,552
3x Flying Daggers+ 45,992,546,630
Cleansing Imbue + Accelerate + Flying Daggers++ 39,291,693,901
3x Flying Daggers++ 50,270,923,060
2x Flying Daggers+ + Seraphim Strike 52,660,712,272
Accelerate + 2x Flying Daggers++ 46,849,674,675
3x Flying Daggers++ 50,270,923,060
3x Flying Daggers+ 45,992,546,630
Take a look at the trend of the numbers. There's essentially no "down time" in Rem's rotation. Her Flying Daggers ability, which is the MAG Damage ability you'll be using after you self-imbue, does have a modifier increase after one of her Cooldowns (Accelerate that you see there), but all her Cooldowns and Self-Imbues/Imperils do some significant chunks of damage on their own. This is distinctly different than what we normally see where Cooldowns and Set-Up actions are purely support and don't do a lot of Damage. With Rem that isn't the case, her Set-up T1 still smacks for 40B damage, and again for perspective that's still more than what Four Winds Physalis does for her average DPT.

A Note about her LB

Rem and Ace both work really well as Magic Finishers, Rem even moreso because her Chain Cap is 6 due to a passive, rather than 4. The real difficulty is quickly building 40 Shards for her LB, opposed to Ace who gets it automatically. But they both have a real ability to burst out a ton of LB damage, if that's something you need.

Looking at the Chaining Families

Being both BS and CWA allows for Rem to seamlessly fit within numerous amount of comps. From a "meta" perspective, the majority of our Top 20 DPS have been AMOE or SR Chainers, so BS isn't as popular in that regard. Out of the Top 20 Physical DPS (per wiki ratings) the only BS Chainers there right now are Rico Rodriguez. Ouch. BUT being BS Mage, she pairs extraordinarily well with Wild Card Ace (also on this banner) and Xuan Wu Qing Long, as well as potentially with Levinson and AFryevia from the Hybrids. (Operative Zyrus can also do Lightning BS Frames too)
So although her BS skills aren't necessarily among chart topping families at the moment, I have no doubt that you can still effectively pair her with valuable units to achieve what you need to. For trials there will be dupes aplenty, and for Dark Visions most people have been cheesing magic stages with Xuan Wu and Hybrids.

Gearing and Other Notes

This is some cool new territory for many where Dual-Wielding Mages have been a minority. Part of the reason is because it can be difficult because many have TDH passives, but also because if they Dual Wield some of the equipment that boosts MAG Equipment is locked behind STMRs. So some of you might have amazing gearing for her already in this regard, others might still need to chase a bit depending how much you want to invest in this style of unit.
Equipment How Acquired Stats
First Nirvana (Rod) STMR - Morgana Staff with MAG +160 SPR +40, Increase eqMAG (25%) when DW
Save the Queen (Whip) STMR - Quistis Whip with MAG +165, Increase eqMAG (50%) when DW
Ravenheart (Accessory) STMR - Malphasie MAG +40, MAG+20%, increase eqMAG (50%) when DW (other stat boosts too)
Wings that Transcend Time (Ability) STMR - Gilgamesh WOTV MAG+60%, Increase eqMAG (50%) when DW
Winter child (Ability) STMR - Christine MAG+50%, Increase eqMAG (50%) when DW
Yin-Yang Dual Hand (Ability) STMR - Nagi MAG+40%, Increase eqMAG (50%) when DW
Knowing Tag (Ability) TMR - BB Rem MAG+30%, Increase eqMAG (25%) when DW
As you can see, plenty of Magic Equipment boosts, but they're all basically locked behind STMRs.
For actual gear, she can equip Daggers, Swords, Staffs, Rods, and Whips for weapons. And Hats, Clothes, Light Armor, and Robes for equipment. Fair selection there of items that are high in Magical EQ. And for those of you that heard rumblings of Quistis's STMR (who was a Free Unit for a King Mog Event) her STMR as a Whip seems particularly useful here for Rem.

TMR: Knowing Tag

Knowing Tag: Ability - Increase HP (10%) and MAG/SPR (30%), Increase potency of Healing Items (200%), Increase equipment MAG (25%) when dual wielding
eyy!!! So if you saw this in the table above, it's the only TMR so far as I can see that increases Magic Equipment, from that perspective this is actually really useful right out of the gate not only for Rem, but for other Mages you might trying to equip DW. The other % buffs to HP, MAG, and SPR are rather modest in the grand scheme of things, and the double healing item potency is a nice in-character flair but I don't know how often anybody actually uses items. I can't imagine a scenario where this Item Potency would ever be preferable to use. If you put this TMR on a a Mage, you'd disrupt their whole rotation taking a turn to throw a Healing item out, and if you had this on Rem, she already has Healing abilities. Oh well.
I don't think I'd pull on Rem just for this TMR, but if you happen to get her by chance I'd definitely think this is one that could be built into a ton of different kits.

STMR: Orichalcum Dirk (FF Type-0)

Orichalcum Dirk: Dagger - ATK +22, MAG +171, SPR+120. Increase LB Gauge fill rate (100%), Enable Dual Wielding of one-handed weapons.
This is quite a beaut of an STMR from Benevolent Beauty Rem, though probably more useful on other units than it would be on Rem herself (aside from the pure MAG/SPR stat). I say this from the perspective that this Dagger enables an Innate Dual Wield which Rem already has.
BUT, holy hell the +171 MAG is not only among the top of the charts, but the SPR of +120 adds a significant amount of bulk that most other Magic Items don't. Just for some comparisons:
Weapon Equipment How Acquired Stats
Fifth Nirvana (Harp) STMR - Qin MAG +195, SPR +24, HP/MP +30%
Mordegon's Staff (Rod) STMR - Mordegon MAG +180
Vespinae (Rod) Trial MAG +180
Blue Storm (Gun) STMR - Four Winds Physalis MAG +180, ATK+88, MP reduced by 20%
Draconian Princess' Pulse (Bow) STMR - Draconian Princess Fina MAG +178, ATK +112
Holographic Transceiver (Rod) STMR - Operative Zyrus MAG +175, Killers
Topping the actual MAG Stat charts, you can see many of these are STMRs on Time Limited Units, they aren't all Mage friendly (Harps and Guns in there), and they don't do anything for any sort of "bulk" that Rem's does. There's a slew of others that are in the MAG +170 range, but don't also bring the utility or bulk the Dirk does.
So, putting this STMR down as a really good one that most Mages would love.

Final Conclusions and Other things not mentioned

Honestly I feel like there's still things about BB Rem that I haven't talked about, that's how diverse this character is. She has Dualcast/Triple Black Magic cast to be able to hit enemies with Fira-Blizz-Thund-aja spells, Tornado, and Freeze (which do 50% imperils, tiny but still there). She also has a Cooldown (Summon True Eidolon) which Increases the Evocation Gauage by 10 (so insta-fill), Increases allies LB gauges by 40 Crystals, but kills herself (like the original units). She also has a Passive that allows her to Evoke any Esper equipped in your party. This seems more niche, but still, it's there.
Overall, I can see why people were hyped for this unit. Not only does Rem cover two classes really well in terms of Role Compression, but she brings Physical-Based Magic attacks which are inherently useful, Three Elemental Imbue/Imperils, Demon/Machine Killers for her Teammates, Black Magic, and useful S/TMRs.
Hopefully you all learned more about Rem via this post, I know many of you have already been hyped for these units and now we can really quantify why. Good luck pulling if you do, and as always, thanks for reading!
P.S. I'm hoping to have Ace's review out today or tomorrow as well.
submitted by Willster328 to FFBraveExvius [link] [comments]

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