? The race between Bezos and Branson heat up.

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Leisure and Hospitality and Government Emerge Major Players Boosting US Job Market Growth

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Are the US businesses back in action? Well, the latest US hiring trends suggest so. Significantly improved hiring, majorly driven by leisure and hospitality, helped the job market come up with 850,000 jobs in June 2021. The numbers are especially promising when seen in the context of last year’s job losses due to the pandemic. The leisure and hospitality sector tops the chart with 343,000 jobs added in June, followed by the government sector, adding 188,000 new positions. The other two that added more than 50,000 jobs included professional and business services (72,000) and retail trade (67,100).

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The Sectoral Recoveries:

Leisure and hospitality:

The leisure and hospitality industry had lost nearly 50% of its workforce between March and April 2020. Although it is yet to recover 13% of its pre-pandemic payroll count, June’s report shows that the sector has recovered nearly 73% of the losses. More than 50% of the jobs created in leisure and hospitality came from bars and restaurants, adding 190,000 to its payroll in June alone.


The government sector got the boost from its school districts hiring teachers, bus drivers, and other public education staff. The local government education sub-segment accounted for 155,200 of the 188,000 government sector jobs.


Retail’s addition of 67,100 is the sector’s best since October. It added 106,500 employees in October 2021.

The Race Between Bezos and Branson Heat Up

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Two billionaires fighting for market share is a regular phenomenon. But, this time, we are watching two billionaires and iconic business persons fighting for space. If everything goes as per the schedule, Branson will beat Bezos by more than a week’s margin.

What’s the race all about?

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Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic Spacecraft has declared its launch window for the next test flight to open at 6 AM pacific time, July 11th. The space mission will have a complete crew, including two pilots, three specialists, and Branson himself.

After nine days, on July 20th, Jeff Bezos has his trip planned to space. The more traditional Blue Origin New Shepard capsule spacecraft used by Bezos would have Bezos himself, his brother, and a lucky ticket holder, a ticket that was sold at an auction for $28 million.

The fourth passenger in Bezos’ spacecraft would be Wally Funk, the first graduate of NASA’s Mercury 13 program. She was trained to become an astronaut but never got the chance to go to space since the mission got canceled in 1961. Funk’s story shows that sometimes it might take fifty years to get your second chance.

Tesla Car Sales up by 122%

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Tesla, the EV manufacturing big shot led by Elon Musk, delivered 201,250 vehicles in Q2 2021. In Q2 2020, it had sold 90,650. The growth in sales numbers translated into a percentage jump of 122%, year-over-year. While the surge was significant and crossed the mark of the first quarter’s sales of 184,877 vehicles, it was below the estimate of 207,000 deliveries, set by analysts at FactSet.

The Winning Category

The Model 3 Sedans and Model Y hatchbacks had 199,360 deliveries. Model S sedans and X crossovers, vehicles costing more than $100,000, registered only 1,890 deliveries.

Annual Projections

Sustaining the recent quarter sales trend, Tesla expects to hit a sales figure of 900,000 vehicles for the year. Continued growth in China, both in sales and production, is fueling the growth for Tesla in a big way.

General Motors Strikes a Lithium-Sourcing Deal

GM is making a significant investment, amounting to multi-million dollars, in Australia’s Controlled Thermal Resources (CTR). CTR will help source Lithium, a crucial constituent to electric-car batteries, from the US geothermal deposits.

The Significance of the Deal

So far, the US does not have any full-scale lithium production facility from its geothermal wells. In such a scenario, the investment of GM will help CTR improve and enhance its lithium extraction operations from the California Salton Sea Geothermal Field. The efforts of GM to strengthen domestic Lithium extraction facilities is a robust indicator of the country’s efforts to become an EV-only company by 2035.

GM’s EV Aspirations:

According to the estimates put out by the California Energy Commission, the Salton Sea Geothermal field could produce 600,000 tons of lithium carbonate in a year. This much of Lithium is valued at a whopping sum of $7.2 billion. To become an EV-only company in the days to come, GM plans to spend $35 billion through 2025.

Portland Trail Blazers to Wear Storm X Logo for the Next Five Years

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In another example of the growing synergy between the industries of sports and crypto, the NBA team Portland Trail Blazers will wear the logo of StormX for the next five seasons, beginning with 2021–22. StormX is a unique blockchain company helping users earn crypto rewards by completing micro-tasks or shopping at the online stores of its partners worldwide.

What the Deal Entails?

None of the parties has published the official size of the deal. The speculation is around an eight-figure contract as similar jersey-logo contracts average around $10 million a year.

Other than Jersey patches, the Trail Blazers will also launch StormX NFTs, based on the Gameday Poster Series. These are artworks of local artists for the team, issued as NFTs representing the team’s posters.

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