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The Economist - 8 апреля 2023

Скачать бесплатно журнал The Economist, 8 апреля 2023

Год выпуска: апрель 2023

Автор: The Economist Newspaper and The Economist Group

Жанр: Экономика/Политика

Издательство: «The Economist Newspaper Ltd»

Формат: PDF (журнал на английском языке)

Качество: OCR

Количество страниц: 88


  • What America gets wrong about gender medicine: leader, page 9.
  • The evidence on treating gender dysphoria in kids is worryingly weak: briefing, page 16.

How the Trump show plays abroad

  • What America’s friends should make of the latest drama: leader, page 11.
  • The charges in Manhattan have restored Donald Trump to his favourite role: Lexington, page 24.

Why going green means building a lot

  • The green environmentalism needs: leader, page 10.
  • Can America become a clean-energy superpower? Page 19.
  • Electric grids are about to be transformed, see Technology Quarterly, after page 40.

Which degrees are worth it?

  • Students are veering away from dodgy degrees. Governments should help them: leader, page 13.
  • Crunching the puny financial benefits of many university courses, page 51.

Fixing the enfeebled IMF

  • A bastion of the post-war economic order faces an almighty identity crisis. How to fix it? Leader, page 12, and analysis, page 59.

The world this week Politics

  • Donald Trump appeared before a judge in Manhattan to plead not guilty to 34 charges of falsifying business records. They relate to payments he made before the 2016 election to a pornographic actress as hush money over an alleged fling. The charges were laid by a grand jury after the Manhattan district attorney revived the case. The violence from his supporters that some had feared ahead of Mr Trump’s appearance did not materialise. Mr Trump is the first former American president to be charged with a crime. He described the case against him as a “witch hunt”.
  • The left won two big elections in America. Brandon Johnson won Chicago’s mayoral election; he was backed by teachers’ unions and defeated a law-and-order candidate. And voters in Wisconsin chose a liberal judge for the state Supreme Court, ending its control by conservatives.
  • Rahul Gandhi, India’s opposition leader, launched an appeal against his conviction for defaming Narendra Modi, the prime minister, during a speech in 2019. Mr Gandhi’s conviction has resulted in him being disqualified from Parliament. His appeal starts on April 13th.
  • Australia’s governing Labor Party won a seat from the opposition Liberals, the first time in over 100 years that an opposition party has lost to the government in a by-election. Aston, a suburb of Melbourne, had been a safe seat for the Liberals until last year’s general election, when it became a marginal constituency. Anthony Albanese, the prime minister, is riding high in the polls, with an approval rating close to 60%.
  • Najib Razak, a former prime minister of Malaysia, lost his final appeal against a corruption verdict for which he has been sentenced to 12 years in prison. Meanwhile, the Malaysian Parliament voted to scrap mandatory death sentences, giving leeway to judges to impose other punishments, such as whipping. A moratorium on executions has been in place since 2018.
  • Israel’s cabinet approved the creation of a national guard under the control of the national-security minister, Itamar Ben-Gvir. Mr Ben-Gvir is the leader of Jewish Power, a far-right party, and a ferociously anti-Arab politician. His opponents fear that he will use the force as his own publicly funded militia. Binyamin Netanyahu, the prime minister, authorised the force in order to prevent Mr Ben-Gvir from abandoning the governing coalition.
  • Egypt and Syria agreed to strengthen relations during the first official visit by a Syrian foreign minister to Cairo in more than a decade. It represents the latest effort by Arab states to mend ties with President Bashar al-Assad.
  • Burkina Faso, which experienced two military coups last year, lurched further away from France and America, which have been helping it fight a jihadist insurgency. It expelled two French journalists, one of whom had investigated a video in which Burkinabe soldiers appear to have filmed themselves murdering teenage boys. Burkina Faso also said it wants to buy weapons from North Korea.
  • Troops in an east African regional force recaptured the key Congolese border town of Bunagana, which had been under the control of the M23 rebel group. The regional force has been reinforced with a contingent from South Sudan and has received a pledge of soldiers from Angola, after rebels broke a ceasefire deal.
  • Guillermo Lasso, the conservative president of Ecuador, denied allegations that he had been involved in graft. Mr Lasso faces an impeachment trial in May. Congress is dominated by left-wingers who are hostile to Mr Lasso, a former banker.

Sound familiar?

  • Jair Bolsonaro, a former president of Brazil, returned to the country after three months in the United States. Thousands of his supporters stormed government buildings in January in an attempt to overturn his narrow election defeat in October. Mr Bolsonaro faces numerous legal probes in Brazil, including into whether he incited the rioters (he denies all allegations). If found guilty, he could be barred from public office for eight years.
  • The centre-right National Coalition Party took the most seats in Finland’s general election and will try to form a coalition government under Petteri Orpo. It was a bitter defeat for Sanna Marin, the outgoing prime minister, whose Social Democrats came third by the number of seats. The right-wing Finns Party came second, and took 20.1% of the vote, its best share ever.
  • Ms Marin’s biggest achievement in office was steering Finland through the crisis of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Finland formally became a member of nato this week, after Hungary and Turkey became the final two members of the military alliance to approve its application. Those two countries are still holding up Sweden’s bid to join.
  • France’s president, Emmanuel Macron, arrived in Beijing for a visit timed to coincide with one by the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen. They hoped to send a unified message to the Chinese leader, Xi Jinping, about how European leaders view ties with China. Mrs von der Leyen, however, has sounded more hawkish than Mr Macron, who flew to China accompanied by a large business delegation.
  • America’s secretary of state, Antony Blinken, demanded that Russia release Evan Gershkovich, a journalist with the Wall Street Journal, who has been arrested and accused of spying for the United States.
  • An influential Russian blogger who supported Russia’s war in Ukraine was assassinated by a bomb in St Petersburg. Russia blamed Ukraine for his death; Ukraine said he was a victim of Russian infighting. The authorities arrested a woman on suspicion of being involved.
  • The husband of Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s former first minister, was arrested in connection with an investigation into party finances. Ms Sturgeon was the leader of the pro-independence Scottish National Party until she announced her resignation unexpectedly in February; her husband, Peter Murrell, served as the party’s chief executive until last month.

A French revolution

  • In a triumph for pedestrians everywhere, Parisians voted in a referendum to ban rented electric scooters from their streets following a spate of injuries. Only 8% of those eligible to vote did so, but the result was 90% in favour of prohibiting the traffic-weaving, pavement-riding nuisances from the city.

The world this week Business

  • Oil prices rose sharply after opec+ announced a surprise cut to production. The cartel said it wanted to support stability in the market, which is another way of saying it didn’t like the dip in oil prices in mid-March. It also wanted to deter speculators who have been betting on softer oil prices. OPEC+ is lowering output by a further 1.15m barrels per day, taking its reduction in supply to 3.66m bpd, or 3.7% of global demand.
  • Media reports suggested that ubs may cut up to 30% of the workforce, around 36,000 jobs, in the newly combined bank that emerges from its emergency takeover of Credit Suisse. Meanwhile the chairman of Credit Suisse, Axel Lehmann, apologised to investors at the 167-year-old bank’s last-ever annual general meeting. In his opening speech, Mr Lehmann noted the “bitterness, anger and shock” of shareholders.
  • The chairman of hsbc, Mark Tucker, faced irate shareholders at a meeting in Hong Kong. Influential investors in the Chinese territory support proposals for hsbc to spin off its Asian business, which provides most of the bank’s profits. The campaign is backed by Ping An, a Chinese insurance company and hsbc’s biggest shareholder. Mr Tucker said the board’s opposition to a split was unanimous. He also pledged to keep up dividend payments that had been cut during the pandemic.
  • China Renaissance Holdings, an investment bank based in Beijing, suspended trading in its shares and postponed its audited annual results, because the auditors cannot contact Bao Fan, the bank’s chairman and founder, to sign off the report. Mr Bao disappeared in February. It is widely assumed that he has been detained by the authorities and is co-operating with an investigation.
  • The 11 countries in Asia and the Pacific that comprise the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Transpacific Partnership agreed to let Britain join the free-trade pact. The British government hailed this as a big post-Brexit win, but the gains to the British economy will be small, if not negligible.
  • The euro zone’s annual rate of inflation slowed significantly in March, to 6.9% from 8.5% the previous month. However, core inflation, which strips out volatile food and energy prices and which economists worry about most at the moment, hit a new high of 5.7%.
  • Australia’s central bank left its key interest rate unchanged at 3.6%, after a round of ten consecutive rises since May. Philip Lowe, the bank’s governor, recognised that “monetary policy operates with a lag” and the rate increases had yet to be felt. But he also said that some further tightening may be needed to bring down inflation.

An obit for Virgin Orbit

  • Virgin Orbit filed for bankruptcy protection in America. The satellite-launch firm, backed by Sir Richard Branson, went public on the Nasdaq stock exchange in 2021 by merging with a special-purpose acquisition company (spac). But its business of offering cheap, small-scale launch services to the rapidly growing space industry couldn’t capture a significant slice of an increasingly competitive market.
  • Tesla delivered almost 423,000 cars in the first quarter, up by around a third from the same period last year. Its share price fell on the news since markets were expecting even higher sales given Tesla’s recent price cuts for customers.
  • Teck Resources, a Canadian mining company, rejected an unsolicited takeover bid from Glencore, which wants to spin off their combined coal businesses. Mining coal is still profitable, despite the turn to renewable energy. Teck also owns several copper mines, an attractive asset at a time when
    miners can’t get enough of the metal, which is prized because of its extensive use in building new energy infrastructure for electric cars, solar, wind and the like.
  • Italy’s data-protection regulator temporarily banned ChatGPT because of concerns over privacy violations. Italy is the first country in the West to prohibit the generative artificial-intelligence chatbot. Germany’s data-privacy boss suggested that his country could do the same. Not everyone agrees. Matteo Salvi-ni, Italy’s deputy prime minister, said the decision was “hypocritical” given that virtually everything online raises questions of privacy.

Get ready to rumble

  • The companies behind the Ultimate Fighting Championship and World Wrestling Entertainment agreed to merge in a $21.4bn deal. Both organisations are social-media powerhouses, with ufc punching above 15m subscribers on YouTube and wwe pinning down 94m. Conor McGregor, arguably the biggest star in mixed martial arts, suggested that he wants to become the first combined ufc and wwe world champion.

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