It’s quiet out there...TOO quiet! Equities are up modestly, along with oil, gold, and silver.

Treasuries are higher, while the dollar is lower.

On the news front...

More headlines about President Biden’s budget proposals hit in the last 24 hours. The White House is reportedly requesting a 25% minimum tax on billionaires, an increase in capital gains taxes for investment to 39.6% from 20%, and a boost in the corporate tax rate to 28% from 21%.

Russia unleashed a major missile and drone barrage at Ukraine overnight, striking targets around the country. Ukrainian air defenses had success shooting down some of the 81 missiles and eight drones sent its way.

The cryptocurrency crisis claimed another victim late yesterday, with Silvergate Capital (SI) saying it would wind down operations. The California-based bank made a name for itself by providing a wide range of services to crypto-related businesses, but it faced billions of dollars in withdrawals recently. SI shares had already plunged 87% in the last year, and they tanked another 37%+ in the pre-market.

Initial jobless claims ticked up to 211,000 in the most recent week, well above the consensus of 195,000. I don’t normally harp on these volatile weekly numbers. But the Federal Reserve is watching for ANY sign of a cooldown in the labor market, and if claims keep rising, it will have one.

The Labor Department also reported a rise in layoffs yesterday. Plus, the number of open positions in the construction sector plunged, according to the “JOLTS” report on employment trends.