Pearl Harbor 2019

April 3rd, 2020

December 6, 2019. Much more here.

Huh? at the NYT?

April 2nd, 2020

Baker at NYT:

Mr. Trump will see more Americans die from the coronavirus in the weeks and months to come than Presidents Harry S. Truman, Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard M. Nixon saw die in the Korean and Vietnam Wars combined. The lowest estimate would claim nearly as many Americans as World War I under President Woodrow Wilson and 14 times as many Americans as Iraq and Afghanistan together under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama.

Huh? This is the bio of the writer. Korea and Vietnam killed almost 100K Americans, which you will see if you fitch our network. Something is very wrong with the reporters and their press printing this nonsense.

Capital N.

Gomer had it right

April 1st, 2020

Fitch Ratings – Chicago – 31 Mar 2020: Fitch Ratings has placed 35 outstanding tranches of Aviation ABS (aircraft and engine) notes on Rating Watch Negative (RWN). In addition, the Rating Outlooks on 51 classes of notes were revised to Negative from Stable. These actions encompass all 27 aircraft and four engine ABS transactions totaling $13.8 billion in notes issued by 13 lessor ABS platforms rated by Fitch, as listed below.

These rating actions are driven principally by the massive negative impact of the coronavirus pandemic, specifically the ongoing declining credit quality of over 200 airline lessees backing the 31 securitized pools. This has increased pressure on ratings, particularly for tranches with RWN. Fitch is now conducting a more in-depth review of the rated portfolio that could result in further negative rating actions in the weeks ahead.

These actions follow on from March 23, when Fitch placed the sector asset performance rating outlook to negative from stable-to-negative. This reflected material downside risks from this global pandemic driving unknown and unique risks for aviation ABS that is hitting global airlines head-on. To determine the immediate impact from the severe hit to airline lessee credits backing ABS pools, Fitch updated ABS pool airline ratings issued recently by our global airline corporates team. Non-rated airline assumptions were also reviewed with many airline ratings assumed to move lower, specifically for smaller, weaker regional airlines with poor financials or operating metrics. This updated view on underlying airline credit assumptions is a key driver of these actions.

Transactions placed on RWN were driven principally by greater near term risk from the immediate impact of deteriorating airline pool lessee credit. This is due to the overall global impact of the coronavirus to the travel sector, and heightened probability for airline defaults and/or lease deferrals, and thus potential declines in ABS cash flows. This was coupled with reviewing risks related to implied cash flow coverage sensitivity levels; asset risks such as potential value declines on widebody aircraft; ongoing deal performance metrics and cash flows paying down the waterfall; and structural features such as implications to debt service coverage ratio (DSCR) triggers, and other features.

Any immediate material airline lessee lease deferrals hitting transaction cash flows and/or airline defaults/bankruptcies resulting in aircraft groundings or storage, can result in negative rating actions. Fitch will take into account lease deferral terms as information filters through, and apply to individual transaction analyses accordingly.

Fitch is currently reviewing and addressing tranches placed on RWN. This will involve running bespoke asset and liability cash flow modeling, including updating revised airline rating and default assumptions; revisiting asset specific assumptions/stresses specifically on widebody aircraft value/appraisal assumptions; and potentially applying additional stresses where deemed appropriate, given the ongoing pandemic and hit to the sector.

To reiterate, updated airline credit assumptions and modeled cash flow results will be the key factors in resolving RWN actions during this review. This will be most applicable for subordinate notes on RWN, and specifically be more impactful on class B and C notes currently rated ‘BBBsf’ and ‘BBsf’.

Although vulnerable to increasing industry risks, tranches assigned a Negative Outlook are viewed as more resilient in the short term due to the following factors, or a combination thereof, including less exposure to risky airline credits; a more attractive aircraft mix comprised solely/mostly of more in-demand narrowbody aircraft; stronger initial modeled cash flow coverage and thus a level of cushion built in; or are performing within initial expectations and paying down as scheduled all the way down to equity.

Fitch expects a significant global economic impact to the travel and aviation/airline sectors from the pandemic, due to the recent and sudden global airline groundings and revenue/financial body-blow to airlines backing ABS pools. Additionally, there is a lack of clarity on the potential length of the impact at this time. Such ongoing stress and uncertainty driving the rapid decline of many airline ABS credits globally, will be a key when assessing rating actions.

While Fitch acknowledges that government support and/or consolidation initiatives may provide support to some airlines, the form of support and details are unclear at this point and the agency will consider implications as more information becomes available.



April 1st, 2020

Empty cities.


March 31st, 2020

240K – we’ll see.


March 31st, 2020

VDH of course: “California governor Gavin Newsom has assured his state that over half of the population — or, in his words, 56 percent — will soon be infected. That is, more than 25 million coronavirus cases are on the horizon, which, at the virus’s current fatality rate of 1–2 percent (the ratio of deaths to known positive cases), would mean that the state should anticipate 250,000–500,000 dead Californians in the near future. Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti predicted that this week Los Angeles would be short of all sorts of medical supplies as the epidemic killed many hundreds, as is the case in New York City.

It’s been well over two months since the first certified coronavirus case in the United States, so one might expect to see early symptoms of the apocalypse recently forecast by Governor Newsom. Yet a number of California’s top doctors, epidemiologists, statisticians, and biophysicists — including Stanford’s John Ioannides, Michael Levitt, Eran Bendavid, and Jay Bhattacharya — have expressed some skepticism about the bleak models predicting that we are on the verge of a statewide or even national lethal pandemic of biblical proportions.

The skeptics may be right. As of this moment, California’s cumulative fatalities attributed to coronavirus are somewhere over 140 deaths, in a state of 40 million. That toll is a relatively confirmable numerator (though coronavirus is not always the sole cause of death), as opposed to the widely unreliable denominator of caseloads (currently about 6,300 in the state) that are judged to be only a fraction of the population that has been tested. The Iceland study, for example, suggests that half of those who are infected show no symptoms. Currently, even with fluctuating statistics, California is suffering roughly about one death to the virus for every 250,000–300,000 of its residents.

The rate certainly will go up each hour, and no doubt in geometric fashion, as the virus spreads. Yet we should remember that California loses about 270,000 lives to all causes every year — meaning, on any given day, around 740 Californians die. So far there is no published clear evidence that in January, February, and March more Americans have died from pneumonia-related diseases than in an average year. Note too that not all deaths attributed to coronavirus are the work of COVID-19 alone; they are often accompanied by advanced age and serious chronic conditions that may have soon led to death without any accompanying viral infection.

In contrast, as of Monday morning, New York State, with about half of California’s population, has about eight to nine times the number of deaths, and 20 times the per capita rate, at 60 deaths per million residents. In fact, California has a much lower per capita death rate than many of the nation’s largest states; for that matter, its per capita death rate is similar to that of nations that so far have mysteriously escaped the virus’s modeled wrath. Currently, California has lost fewer than 4 people per million, roughly between South Korea’s 3 deaths per million and Germany’s 5, which are both being studied as outliers. Of course, statistics change hourly, but for now California’s data remain mysteries.”

None of these numbers make sense. Something very peculiar is going on.

Bonus fun: from a regular guy

No Corona Corona

March 30th, 2020

Read VDH or watch ole Joe for those things.

We caught the bug for reading mysteries from the Tower Treasure and its nice song. We stayed in that path a long time, starting with the first 35 Hardy Boys mysteries. And oddly enough, landing in 7 Days in May as a 10 year old, perhaps thinking that reading parts of the TIME best sellers would help get us into a good high school in, um, 1965. We liked the movie very much, along with the Kubrick one, but can’t remember when we saw those. Around this time we also recall reading Eliot on Poetry and Criticism. After that we checked into high school in a Benedictine monastery, so all worked out very well…

A little note

March 29th, 2020

We have several thousand books, and we wanted to spend some time thinking about which mattered, which didn’t, and so forth. What was the earliest book that captivated you? What do you recall in precise terms from the books? What poetry do you remember? Oh, if you’re going to run a meaningful book, don’t be this guy.

Adam West: call your office

March 28th, 2020


what if China is responsible not only for the global spread of the Wuhan virus but also for the original infections? There are many, myself included, who suspect that this particular coronavirus may have been under study at the Wuhan Institute of Virology and that it somehow escaped from the lab.

A paper by two Chinese scientists outlined a plausible scenario about how this leak might have happened at either the WIV or at another nearby biolab run by China’s Centers for Disease Control. They argue that “Patient Zero” was a lab worker who accidentally infected himself with a bat coronavirus. The paper was quickly censored by the Chinese authorities, which only heightens suspicions.

Without question, China for years has been doing research at its Wuhan biolabs that could be used to create coronaviruses harmful to humans. The researchers have left a clear paper trail.

In a 2008 article in the Journal of Virology, WIV researchers described how they were genetically engineering SARS-like viruses from horseshoe bats to enable them to use angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) to gain entry into human cells.

In other words, more than 10 years ago the Wuhan biolab was already creating entirely new and deadly viruses by inserting that part of the dangerous SARS virus that allows it to infect people into a second bat coronavirus, which was then able to attack human cells just like the Wuhan Flu virus does.

Then there is a 2013 article in Nature by some of the same WIV researchers entitled, “Isolation and characterization of a bat SARS-like coronavirus that uses the ACE2 receptor.”

They conclude that “Chinese horseshoe bats are natural reservoirs of SARS-CoV, and that intermediate hosts may not be necessary for direct human infection by some bat SARS-like coronaviruses.”

Here we find the Wuhan biolab involved in collecting a range of SARS-like coronaviruses from horseshoe bats and proving that, like the SARS virus itself, some of these other naturally occurring coronaviruses could infect human beings directly. Again, just like the Wuhan virus does.

Now if either genetically engineered or naturally occurring coronaviruses capable of infecting people escaped from the Wuhan biolab, this could be the origin of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and I are being hammered in mainstream media outlets for even suggesting that the Wuhan virus may have escaped from a Chinese lab. They have tried to “fact check” our concern to death by mischaracterizing it and by citing so-called experts.

A left-wing site called Health Feedback falsely accused me of suggesting that the virus was definitely a genetically engineered bioweapon. A Forbes columnist claimed that both Cotton and I had said it “was manufactured in a lab.” The Daily Mail wrote “Sen. Tom Cotton and American social Scientist Steven Mosher push this theory that the virus was manufactured.”

More stuff from the Hoover Institution. So much blah-blah. Incidentally, we prefer the most evil explanation, with the Prince, the PM, and the guy with a fever showing up at a presidential press conference.

More via WSJ: A Lunar New Year dinner left six family members infected; a hallmark of the virus is the way it has spread within families

Oh well

March 27th, 2020

Conrad again. Yup. BTW, it’s just so weird that so many people are getting the virus.

3.3 billion jobless

March 26th, 2020

in a week or so. Yawn. There’s no point in discussing this nonsense. We’ll come back to the last week or two in a while.

$6T – NBD

March 25th, 2020

Conrad Black.

Funny stuff

March 24th, 2020

Is it 1619, 1620, or what?

12 years and counting

March 23rd, 2020

12 years ago oil went to $147 a barrel and took down a lot of companies. Now it’s happening again with oil at $20 a barrel and so forth.

No need for Pearl Harbor

March 23rd, 2020

Yikes: The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation reopened 13 of its 30 rest stops on a limited basis on the interstates and throughout the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

Glad that WWII closed long before the other side could have figured out that all they needed was panic!


March 22nd, 2020

Most boring panic ever.


The cure for Corona Corona must be nearly here

March 21st, 2020

From a serious “politician”: The president is turning to racist rhetoric to distract from his failures to take the coronavirus seriously early on, make tests widely available, and adequately prepare the country for a period of crisis.”

More here. And let’s not forget dining with Bono, which we thought was the guy on TV with Cher.

Corona Corona means Short Short

March 20th, 2020

Here’s Tucker, and we’ll bet there will be a very long line of people in government and elsewhere who should go to jail.

Proof of Corona Corona

March 19th, 2020

This is a very serious disease.

More blah blah

March 18th, 2020

If it comes from China it’s guess what. No, you’re RRRRR. Finally, we don’t have to go this far, but still. Hey, there’s really no end to the media nuttiness.

Bonus fun: VDH gets really fancy.