Daily updates on climate change and the global economy.

Daily updates on climate change and the global economy.
Stay current with what’s happening around the world with a quick scan of top news.

Daily updates on climate change and the global economy.
Stay current with what’s happening around the world with a quick scan of top news.

Daily updates on climate change and the global economy.
Stay current with what’s happening around the world with a quick scan of top news.

Daily updates on climate change and the global economy.
Stay current with what’s happening around the world with a quick scan of top news.

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The International Monetary Fund warned of “economic collapse” in some low-income countries unless creditors in the world’s richest nations suspend debt-service obligations and help renegotiate new terms.

“About 60% of the world’s poorest countries are at high risk or are already in debt distress, double the share in 2015, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva …said in a blog post Thursday.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-12-02/imf-warns-of-economic-collapse-in-some-nations-without-debt-fix


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Fed’s inflation pivot could be catastrophic for stocks, fund manager says.

“Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s retirement of the term “transitory” to describe inflation could have an unexpectedly bleak knock-on effect on risk assets, according to Cole Smead, president and portfolio manager at Smead Capital Management.”

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/12/03/feds-inflation-pivot-could-be-catastrophic-for-stocks-fund-manager-says.html


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Margin Debt Is Rising. It’s Becoming a Risk for Stocks…

“Margin debt—the amount of money traders have borrowed to buy new shares, using their stockholdings as collateral—has hit a level close to an all-time high. It’s at $936 billion, according to Yardeni Research, up 40% from this time last year.”

https://www.barrons.com/articles/margin-debt-risk-for-stocks-51638474035


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Investors flee U.S. corporate junk debt on inflation, Omicron concerns.

“Worries over surging inflation and a new variant of the coronavirus are roiling the U.S. corporate junk bond market, though some believe the tumble could draw investors seeking higher yields.”

https://www.reuters.com/markets/us/investors-flee-us-corporate-junk-debt-inflation-omicron-concerns-2021-12-02/


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Inflation causing financial strain for nearly half of U.S. households, poll finds.

“Among low-income households, more than 7 in 10 say the rising cost of food, gas and other necessities is creating hardship.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2021/12/02/inflation-gallup-financial-hardship/


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Ships in California logjam now stuck off Mexico, Taiwan and Japan.

“The decline in ships waiting just offshore of Los Angeles/Long Beach continues to be touted as a sign that port congestion is easing — despite the fact that the true number of waiting ships has not actually declined.”

https://www.freightwaves.com/news/ships-in-california-logjam-are-now-stuck-off-mexico-taiwan-and-japan


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Long term shipping costs up 465 per cent amid supply chain crisis…

“Michelle Bockmann, the markets editor for Lloyd’s List warned parliament’s International Trade Committee that supply costs are spiralling as amid a global supply chain crisis driven by Covid-19 and factory closures.”

https://www.cityam.com/long-term-shipping-contracts-up-465-per-cent-amid-supply-chain-crisis/


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Omicron is “another test of resilience” for already-stressed supply chains, said Per Hong, senior partner at consulting firm Kearney.

““Supply chains remain vulnerable to pandemic-related disruptions, with the Omicron variant highlighting that the crisis is not yet over,” said Sian Fenner, lead Asia economist at Oxford Economics, in a note on Wednesday.”

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/12/02/omicron-covid-variant-next-test-for-global-supply-chain-crisis.html


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[UK] Energy crisis: Zog becomes 25th household supplier to crash and burn since September.

“Another household energy supplier has thrown in the towel as the industry grapples with the unprecedented surge in wholesale costs. Zog Energy, which has 11,700 households on its books, said via its website that it was ceasing to trade…”

https://news.sky.com/story/energy-crisis-zog-becomes-latest-household-supplier-to-crash-and-burn-12483765


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A sharp rise in energy debt has prompted calls for government intervention as Australian households struggle to keep the lights on…

“According to the report released this week, the average household energy debt for gas and electricity has increased 12% from $897 in 2019–20 to $1,000 in 2020–21.”

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2021/dec/03/sharp-rise-in-energy-debt-sees-australian-households-struggling-to-keep-the-lights-on


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Australia’s supply chain is at risk of collapsing next month as a shortage of a Chinese-made chemical [urea] stops diesel trucks from even starting.

“Half of Australia’s long-haul truck fleet has a diesel engine and without sufficient supplies of the environmental additive urea, essential transport is likely to be grounded.”

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10269631/Australias-supply-chain-risk-COLLAPSE-month.html


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Chinese authorities take over debt-ridden Evergrande’s massive Guangzhou football stadium…

“Citing a source with direct knowledge of the matter, Reuters reports that government will either sell or take over the stadium, where construction stopped at least three months ago owing to Evergrande’s liquidity crisis.”

https://www.globalconstructionreview.com/chinese-authorities-take-over-debt-ridden-evergrandes-massive-guangzhou-football-stadium-report/


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Kaisa Moves Closer to Default After Bondholders Reject Swap.

“Kaisa Group Holdings Ltd. failed to win bondholder approval for a debt swap, putting the Chinese developer on course for a default unless it can reach a last-minute agreement with creditors to delay payment.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-12-02/kaisa-bondholders-reject-chinese-developer-s-debt-swap-proposal


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Laos-China Railway Inaugurated Amid Mounting Debt Concerns…

“The economic benefits of the project, however fairly they are distributed, will also have to be weighed against the Laos’ increasingly unmanageable foreign debt burden.”

https://thediplomat.com/2021/12/laos-china-railway-inaugurated-amid-mounting-debt-concerns/


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China’s Fujian sparks fears about Taiwan tensions with emergency drill for blackouts.

“The exercise on Tuesday simulated a large-scale power outage in the southeastern province, which is just across the strait from Taiwan. The drill prompted frenzied discussion online, with some speculating it was related to the possible outbreak of war…”

https://www.scmp.com/economy/china-economy/article/3158053/chinas-fujian-sparks-fears-about-taiwan-tensions-emergency


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Blinken urges Russia to ‘de-escalate’ on border as clashes continue in eastern Ukraine.

“US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Thursday urged Russia to “de-escalate” a military buildup on its border with Ukraine, reiterating his threat of “serious consequences” if Russia resorts to “aggression” amid scheduled bilateral talks in Sweden.”

https://www.france24.com/en/europe/20211202-clashes-continue-in-eastern-ukraine-as-top-diplomats-blinken-lavrov-to-meet


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Hunger in Latin America and the Caribbean increase by 30 percent in one year.

“According to the Regional Overview of Food Security and Nutrition 2021, in just one year, and in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of people living with hunger increased by 13.8 million, reaching a total of 59.7 million people.”

https://www.devdiscourse.com/article/headlines/1829881-hunger-in-latin-america-and-the-caribbean-increase-by-30-percent-in-one-year


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Amid economic crisis, Brazilians switch from gas to wood for cooking fuel.

“Jaqueline de Oliveira, a single mother in Itamaraju, in the northeastern state of Bahia, has been cooking over a wood or charcoal fire during the past six months. Unemployed and raising four children ranging in age from 6 to 13, she can no longer afford to buy bottled liquefied petroleum gas…”

https://www.ncronline.org/news/earthbeat/amid-economic-crisis-brazilians-switch-gas-wood-cooking-fuel


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Brazil enters recession as inflation grips economy…

“The contraction was driven primarily by an 8 per cent drop in agriculture, which has been affected by an unprecedented drought, and a 9.8 per cent decline in the export of goods and services. Industry remained stagnant, while services grew 1.1 per cent.”

https://www.ft.com/content/acd9b444-f085-4938-8f9c-d9d1057de9b7


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Rising Fuel Costs Heighten South African Inflation, Growth Risks…

““Growth momentum, which already appears to be stalling, faces bigger challenges next year from possible additional pandemic-related ‘stop-start’ restrictions and a return to structural rigidities as instability in electricity supply looks to be rising again,” Schultz said.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-12-01/rising-fuel-costs-heighten-south-african-inflation-growth-risks


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Ethiopia Is Tearing Itself Apart.

“The longer the 12-month conflict in Ethiopia drags on, the greater the damage to the fragile stability of the Horn of Africa. It has already sown the seeds of regional destabilization that will accelerate if a political settlement is not sought urgently.”

https://allafrica.com/stories/202112030024.html


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Morocco: Rising social unrest should be a wake-up call for tone-deaf regime…

“Increasingly large numbers of Moroccans are being marginalised by an indifferent regime that enjoys every luxury in life, without lifting a finger to improve the socioeconomic conditions of the people…”

https://www.middleeasteye.net/opinion/morocco-social-unrest-wake-up-call-regime


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Turkish Finance Minister Resigns as Economic Crisis Worsens.

“Finance Minister Lutfi Elvan has quit after only a year in the post, following disagreements with Turkey’s autocratic leader over how to handle the country’s deepening economic turmoil.”

https://balkaninsight.com/2021/12/02/turkish-finance-minister-resigns-as-economic-crisis-worsens/


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Escaping slow death in Beirut, Lebanese embrace farm life.

“Lebanon’s unprecedented economic crisis, the coronavirus pandemic and last year’s massive and deadly explosion of chemical fertiliser at Beirut’s port have dimmed the cosmopolitan appeal of the capital. Many are turning their backs on urban life…”

https://www.france24.com/en/live-news/20211203-escaping-slow-death-in-beirut-lebanese-embrace-farm-life


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Displaced Syrians face brutal winter exacerbated by economic collapse, charity warns.

“The majority of displaced Syrians face a bitter winter with inadequate shelter and not enough food, a humanitarian organization working in Syria and Lebanon has warned.”

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1978966/middle-east


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Palestinian Authority struggles to pay public employees.

“After years of economic stagnation, authorities in the occupied West Bank say they are struggling to pay salaries for public employees, as soaring inflation, dwindling donor aid and Israel’s withholding of vital tax revenues strangle the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) already crippled budget.”

https://www.aljazeera.com/economy/2021/12/2/palestinian-authority-struggles-to-pay-public-employees


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Indian states suffer power cuts as coal-fired plants shut to lower pollution in Delhi.

“India’s northern Haryana and Punjab states have suffered electricity cuts after a directive to stop operating six of the 11 coal-fired power plants around national capital New Delhi in a bid to reduce pollution…”

https://www.reuters.com/markets/commodities/indian-states-suffer-power-cuts-coal-fired-plants-shut-lower-pollution-delhi-2021-12-01/


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‘It’s like hell in here’: The struggle to save Afghanistan’s starving babies…

“”The maternity ward is one of the happiest wards of any hospital, but not anymore in Afghanistan,” says the obstetrician. She says that in just two weeks in September she watched five newborn babies die of starvation. “It’s like hell in here.””

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-59419962


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Global Food Prices Climb Closer to Record, Boosting Inflation Angst…

“A United Nations gauge of global food prices rose 1.2% last month, threatening to make it more expensive for households to put a meal on the table. It’s more evidence of inflation soaring in the world’s largest economies and may make it even harder for the poorest nations to import food, worsening a hunger crisis.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-12-02/food-prices-climb-closer-to-record-increasing-inflation-angst


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OECD warns Omicron variant could cause severe global slowdown.

“Western governments could be forced to bring in fresh emergency financial support for businesses and households if the Omicron coronavirus variant causes a severe global slowdown, a leading economic thinktank has warned.”

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2021/dec/01/oecd-warns-new-covid-variant-could-cause-severe-global-slowdown-omicron


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Bond market flashes warning sign over global economic growth.

“Bond markets are flashing a warning signal over the outlook for global growth as a combination of inflation fears and the spread of the Omicron coronavirus strain sparks a shift in investor expectations.”

https://www.ft.com/content/056c2bb6-1ba7-46ad-ab43-e5b21e1c379d


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Growth Cycle Outlook: Growth Bounce, Then Deflation.

“Despite a moderate pick-up in growth during Q4, the leading indicators of the economic growth cycle suggest we are nearing a period of stagflation and potentially disinflation as growth resumes in deceleration… The bond market tends to get these things right.”

https://seekingalpha.com/article/4473108-growth-cycle-outlook-growth-bounce-then-deflation


You can read the previous ‘Economic’ thread here. I’ll be back tomorrow with a ‘Climate’ thread.

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