Updated April 12, 2021
This wraps a year of week and share with your team.
1. Vaccination and immunity continues to produce good news. Vaccinations in the US are well underway, and over 119 million Americans have received at least one dose, with over 72 million fully vaccinated. This means 35.9% of the total population has had at least one shot, and this percentage jumps to 45.9% of those 18 and older, and 78.5% of those aged 65 or older. And there’s more – in a recent study of frontline workers who were vaccinated with an mRNA vaccine scientists found they still have strong immunity six months later. In fact the vaccine effectiveness remained nearly unchanged over the span of the study, indicating protection will be enduring. This study also continued to show more evidence of little transmission risk after vaccination. For those immune from infection, there is more good news here as well. Reinfection from COVID-19 continues to be very rare, and the belief is that in the rare cases it does happen, it is a milder version easily defeated. Studies continue to find the vast majority of people launch a robust, long-lasting immune response that holds up over time and against the variants. And in a final piece of good news, the current vaccines appear to be working well against the variants prevalent in the US right now. The slight uptick in cases in the past two weeks is likely about reduced restrictions and the more contagious variants, but the overall news is really positive about our ability to achieve and keep immunity from COVID-19.
2. Are you ready for some roaring ’20s? America’s financial experts continue to agree on predictions that we are at the onset of the biggest economic boom since WWII, and it could be years of growth. JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon predicts ‘this boom could easily run to 2023.’ Goldman Sachs raised its US growth project for this year to 8% – the largest expansion in decades. The stock market continues to respond positively, and travel and tourism stocks are starting to rebound. Individually, Americans are in good financial shape, having made smart choices at the start of the pandemic according to Credit Karma. We saved an extra $2 trillion during the pandemic, and even in February 2021 continued to save at a much higher rate than pre-pandemic, with 82% seeing stability or an increase in their credit score. And companies everywhere are mapping out their future office environments to create community, collaboration and culture going forward.
3. Physics or puppies? Instead of a detailed explanation about what it means for the muon, a subatomic particle, to be more magnetic than expected, how about we just celebrate pets? In honor of National Pet Day, which was last weekend, here are my favorite pet rescues in the recent news. First, after nearly four days stranded on an ice floe in the Detroit River, a dog was rescued by Jude Mead and his son who borrowed an airboat to get to the dog. The poor pooch was in rough shape, suffering from frostbite and dehydration, but was successfully treated and put up for adoption. His new family, the Meads, have renamed him Miracle. Two other lucky rescues, Finn and Yuri (below left), were saved from the streets of Romania by photographer Anne Geier, and now enjoy traveling Europe in her VW camper van. The two dogs are mixed breeds, and the three of them are a perfect set. And then there was the stubborn dog that kept going into a NC Dollar General store where it was trying to steal a stuffed unicorn. Every time. When animal control showed up, the officer bought the $10 toy and was easily able to get the dog, now named Sisu (below right), to go with her as long as the unicorn was part of the deal. The adorable photos got Sisu adopted quickly. And in a final guaranteed Monday morning smile, check out this video of this determined bear mom finally getting her four adorable cubs across the street.