Sorry, Devils fans. Hate to be the bearer of disappointing news if you’ve been waiting for general manager Tom Fitzgerald to make a big free-agent splash to speed up a franchise rebuild.

Not happening.

Not this year.

And maybe not next year.

Fitzgerald made that crystal clear in a Sunday morning Zoom call.

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The Devils have a plan to go for it once young centers Nico Hischier and Jack Hughes reach their prime, but not before even though they still are under $18.35 million under next season’s $81.5 million salary cap following three significant weekend acquisitions – defenseman Ryan Murray (4.6M) and left wing Andreas Johnsson ($3.4M) via trades, and goalie Corey Crawford ($3.9M) in a free agent signing

Those additions strengthen the Devils’ depth chart a lot –Murray is a first or second-pair blueliner, Johnsson slots in as a second- or third-line winger and Crawford fits nicely as a No. 1A goalie – but there still is a big, big need for a 25-to-30 goal winger to play with Hughes or Hischier, who are gifted playmakers.

A lot of free agents have signed since the market opened last Friday at noon, but as of Sunday morning there still were five forwards who could be a top-line winger for the Devils, who have missed the playoffs two years in a row and seven of the last eight:

–Taylor Hall (16 goals in 65 games, age 28)

–Mike Hoffman (29 goals in 69 games, age 30)

–Tyler Toffoli (24 goals in 68 games, age 28)

–Evgenii Dadonov (25 goals in 60 games, age 31)

–Mikael Granlund (17 goals in 63 games, age 28)

–Anthony Duclair (23 goals in 66 games, age

A storefront decorated is with a Chinese national flag and red lanterns to celebrate the National Day in Beijing on Oct. 4.

Photographer: Yan Cong/Bloomberg

When the world’s financial markets hit turbulence, could you really turn to China’s yuan as a store of value?

The idea of the yuan as a refuge has gained some traction in recent weeks as it capped its best quarter in 12 years relative to the dollar. That label would put it on par with currencies traditionally deemed as safe in a market downturn, like the Japanese yen or Swiss franc.

In addition to dollar weakness, the yuan is being underpinned by a wide interest-rate premium over the rest of the world, as well as signs that China’s economy is recovering from the shock of the pandemic. But unlike a haven, China’s tightly-managed currency is gaining just as money flows into risk assets such as U.S. stocks or high-yield credit. In other words, it is strengthening in a relatively benign market.

Buying the yuan as a shelter from market volatility isn’t new: in 2017, the Chinese currency proved to be a better bet than the yen when North Korea fired missiles into the Sea of Japan. But history also shows it’s a risky strategy — when the yuan showed haven-like resilience in early 2018, it slumped to a decade low that year after the Trump administration slapped its first tariffs on Chinese goods.

Considering the policy risk in China and its capital controls, viewing the yuan as a haven will be inappropriate, according to George Magnus, research associate at Oxford University’s China Centre.

“The yuan can be considered a ‘good trade,’ which is a cyclical phenomenon and has nothing to do with haven status — the conditions for that are largely unfulfilled,”

Note: Gov. Steve Sisolak signed the Emergency Directive 033 adjusting the statewide standards on gatherings. The new directive adjusts the previous limitations on gatherings from 50 people to 250 people or 50 percent of the occupancy, whichever is less. This applies to both indoor and outdoor venues.

Q: In a homeowners association meeting late last year we were told that because of a high number of claims, they could no longer afford water damage insurance. Then a notice came out early January that as of Jan. 15 we have no water damage insurance on the property.

In June, we received ballots for our covenants, conditions and restrictions amendment to remove the $1,000 deductible on master insurance claims, and there is no new cap. We understand the $1,000 deductible is not practical today and have no issue with this. But it also has added language that says owners “benefiting from” repairs will be liable for deductibles on all master policies. Seems way too broad and arbitrary.

We’ve tried for months to push the board and have done research to find a solution but have been shut down. If the board continues to refuse to act in what we believe is our best interest, we feel we must remove them. I’ve been trying to get more information on the removal process if it comes to that.

Our HOA board discontinued all water damage insurance as of Jan. 15. We owners are at risk now for major liability in our common areas because our condo policies only cover wall insurance. (Although HOA did not warn us or recommend it, many of us have added max loss assessment to our condo policies to protect ourselves.) We have been unable to get the board to move on a solution and have been completely disregarded

The world’s appetite for crude oil won’t reach its apex for another two decades, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said Thursday, offering a much more optimistic view of the world’s post-coronavirus demand for oil than many other forecasts.

In its annual report on oil’s long-term future, OPEC forecast that global oil demand will keep rising until around 2040, when it will plateau at 109.3 million barrels a day—some 10% above its 2019 level.

The annual report from the Vienna-based cartel offers a far brighter future for the supply and demand of oil and gas than the one offered last month by oil giant


BP 0.59%

PLC. The British company is planning to invest heavily in renewable energy over the coming years. Oil demand may already have peaked, it said in September.

Still, OPEC said demand for crude among the relatively wealthy nations of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development won’t grow any further and is forecast to drop 27% from 2019 levels in the period to 2045. Speaking at a virtual press conference, OPEC Secretary-General Mohammed Barkindo described “an evolutionary shift in demand from developed to developing countries.”

The cartel’s global 2040 demand figure was more than one million barrels a day below last year’s forecast of 110.6 million barrels a day. The coronavirus outbreak “resulted in the sharpest downturn in energy and oil demand in living memory” and led to “the most severe economic downturn since the Great Depression,” the report said.

Lockdowns and travel restrictions linked to the pandemic’s restrictions resulted in oil market convulsions this year. Forecasters such as OPEC have found it increasingly difficult to predict the short-term future for the amount of energy the world will need this year and next. It will be 2022 before oil demand returns to its

Even if a vaccine for Covid-19 becomes widely available – and widely used – around the globe, and if the very onerous government restrictions on international travel largely disappear, airlines still will continue to struggle with extraordinarily weak demand for business travel through the end of 2021, and likely beyond.

And that could be devastating for already cash-depleted airlines that are guaranteed this year to report losses that, even for an industry with a long history of red ink, will be record-shattering.

The economic importance of business travel for all conventional airlines and even for most so-called “discount” carriers simply cannot be overstated. It is the kind of travel that historically has generated more than half, and in some cases as much as 75% of carriers’ profits. In effect, cheaper seats sold mostly to leisure travelers are “loss leaders” that serve to fill 75% of the industry’s available seats so that the carriers then are able to offer near-on demand flights to their big-spending business travel customers.

In 2018, business travelers globally spent $1.4 trillion on airlines, hotels, ground transportation, food and other travel services. Half of that was spent in just two countries, the United States and China, according to the World Travel & Tourism Council. About 20 percent of the remaining global business travel spending occurred in Europe.

But since the arrival of the pandemic early this year travel has plummeted to unprecedented lows. U.S. air travel fell by as much as 95% in