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Lawmakers from both parties announced Sunday night that they finally reached an agreement on a $900B coronavirus spending package to bolster the U.S. economy. It would be one of the largest economic relief bills in the nation's history, second only to the $2.2T CARES Act passed back in March. The legislation includes $600 in direct payments to individuals and $300 per week of enhanced unemployment benefits, as well as funding for small businesses, vaccine distribution, food assistance, education and child care. It also covers rental relief and extends the nationwide eviction moratorium through January 31, 2021. The House is expected to vote on the bill today, followed by the Senate.

 

Lockheed Martin is buying rocket engine manufacturer Aerojet Rocketdyne for $4.4B as the company beefs up its propulsion capabilities amid competition from new entrants like SpaceX and Blue Origin. Speaking of space, Viasat inked an agreement to acquire RigNet in an all-stock transaction that will see the company diversify across a number of important verticals. Meanwhile, private-equity firm Thoma Bravo struck a deal to buy property-management-software provider RealPage for $9.6B, in one of the largest recent leveraged buyouts.

 

The relief package leaves out two of the most contentious elements in the negotiations: legal protections for businesses from coronavirus lawsuits, which had been sought by the GOP, and direct aid for state and local governments advocated by Democrats. A dispute was additionally resolved over the Fed's emergency lending powers. The central bank wouldn't be able to replicate programs identical to the ones it started at the beginning of the pandemic without Congressional approval, but that wouldn't prevent it from starting other similar programs. The airline industry also received a big lift, winning $15B to reinstate payroll reimbursements that expired two months ago.

 

With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.

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