Welcome to America’s Newsletter from Tag The Flag, the best morning newsletter on the internet, bringing you nonpartisan news and every view of the Red, White, and Blue. Here’s what you need to know to start your day.
📌 BULLETIN BOARD
The new Michael Jackson documentary, “Leaving Neverland” iscatching a lot of heat. Today We Learned: a supermarket was once closed down so that Michael Jackson could fulfill his dream to go to a supermarket and shop like everybody else and experience what it was like to “put things in a basket.” It was populated with his friends and family pretending to be fellow shoppers and employees.
🦅 U.S. NEWS
US households see biggest decline in net worth since the financial crisis
Americans’ net worth fell at the highest level since the financial crisisin the fourth quarter of 2018. Drivers: Much of the slide came due to Wall Street’s woes, as the stock market suffered a precipitous declinethat started in October and briefly reached bear market status. Equities skidded as investors began to fear that the Fed would keep raising interest rates even as economic conditions began to deteriorate. The decline was offset somewhat by a $300 billion increase in real estate value. – Fortune
Trump Administration Weighs Publicizing Rates Hospitals Negotiate With Insurers
The Trump administration is exploring whether to require hospitals and other health care providers to publicly disclose the secretly negotiated prices they charge insurers for services. Why it matters: the move could lower the cost of copayments and deductibles. – CNBC
Philadelphia becomes first major US city to ban cashless stores
Philadelphia is set to become the first major U.S. city to outlaw cashless stores as part of a push to protect low-income residents. The law will go into effect on July 1, and will require most retail stores in the city to accept cash. Similar proposals have been put forward in New York City and in the New Jersey state legislature. Supporters of the law argued it serves as protection for low-income residents who are unable to access credit or debit cards, and therefore can only make purchases with cash. – The Hill
ECB to Launch New Stimulus in Major Policy Reversal
The ECB said Thursday it would hold interest rates at subzero levels at least through December, months longer than previously signaled. It also announced plans for a series of cheap long-term loans for banks, a stimulus tool it hasn’t rolled out for three years. Why it matters: The measures underscore the activism of the ECB under President Mario Draghi since he became president in November 2011. Why it’s worrisome: analysts questioned whether the ECB would have enough ammunition left to deal with any fresh economic shock, such as a British exit from the European Union with no agreement or a decision by the U.S. to place tariffs on European autos. – WSJ (subscription)
Belgium Finds Men Guilty in Jewish Museum Terrorist Attack
A French-Algerian man and his accomplice were found guilty of shooting four people in the Jewish Museum of Brussels five years ago. Why it matters: it’s the first verdict against a European who joined ISIS and returned to stage terrorist attacks. – Miami Herald
‘Alarming’ Burkina Faso unrest threatens west African stability
The United Nations says Burkina Faso is facing a full-blown humanitarian crisis, with almost a million people in need of urgent help. What’s happening: Inter-communal violence and attacks by armed groups have forced tens of thousands from their homes in the past few weeks. Big picture: the situation in Burkina Faso is threatening to spread to its three southern neighbors, a senior US military figure has warned, heralding the potential destabilization of a vast area of West Africa. – The Guardian / Al Jazeera
The recovery’s fringe benefits
It took 10 years, but a key metric for America’s economic health is back at pre-recession levels Axios’ Mike Allen writes. The share of Americans aged 25–54 with a job is now on par with where it was in 2008 at roughly 80%. The big picture: Nearly 9 million jobs vanished in 2008-09, pushing the unemployment rate to 10% and spurring millions to abandon looking for work. Between the lines: This is forcing employers to be more flexible about who they hire, which especially benefits people with gaps on their resumes. – Axios
New Mexico becomes latest to allow video games as a sport
New Mexico is joining a handful of other states in allowing high school students to participate in a growing sport — video games. At least six other states — Rhode Island, Illinois, Connecticut, Kentucky, Massachusetts and Georgia — allow students to compete in e-sports as an officially sanctioned high school activity. Big picture: Supporters say the increasing acceptance means that colleges can offer scholarships to outstanding players, just as they do with other sports. – AP
Airbnb to acquire last-minute hotel booking service HotelTonight
Airbnb announced it has signed an agreement to acquire last-minutehotel booking app HotelTonight for an undisclosed sum. The acquisition comes just a little over a year after Airbnb first launched Airbnb Plus, a subsection of its service that includes boutique hotels and traditional bed and breakfasts. The strategy: Airbnb had been working over the years to expand its home rental marketplace into a travel platform. The rationale: Working with hotels should also make it easier for Airbnb to enter certain markets that have stricter housing rules around who is allowed to rent their property for short-term stays. According to Recode, HotelTonight was last valued at $450 million. – The Verge / Recode
🤝 PRESENTED BY: GRACE ALLEY
Sunday was National Anthem Day which means that 88 years ago, President Herbert Hoover signed a bill to make the “Star Spangled Banner” the official national anthem for the U.S. on March 3, 1931. With that said, we’ll be featuring Grace Alley’s 100% American Made Flags on our newsletter all week. They’ve been reviewed over 10,000 times on Amazon and come with a “1 Year No Questions Asked Warranty.” Last but not least, if you buy this Flag and Tag it, we’ll send you some unreleased Flag Swag.
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
1993: MTV’s highest-rated series premieres
On this day in 1993, the Music Television Network (MTV) airs the first episode of the animated series Beavis and Butthead, which will go on to become the network’s highest-rated series up to that point.
Yesterday’s tag was from sunny Santa Barbara