“The Cassandra warning that central banks are driving the world’s economy off a cliff… Optimism may be short-lived as the scale of interest rates hikes is yet to fully hit…
“Paul Mortimer-Lee, a veteran economist who used to conduct forecasting for the Bank of England and investment bank BNP Paribas, believes the economy is heading for a painful crash.
“His reasoning? The sheer scale of the jump in interest rates is yet to fully hit home. “I’d be very surprised if we didn’t [get a recession]. And I’d be very surprised if we didn’t get a financial crisis,” says Mortimer-Lee, now a fellow at the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR).
“His argument runs that the financial system has become entirely geared around low interest rates after almost 15 years of cheap money in the post-2008 era. Many of the business models, investment ideas and hedging strategies that underpin the economy will now come unstuck as interest rates stay higher for longer.”
“Almost no Russian oil is sold below $60 cap, say western officials.
“The US-led price cap on Russia’s oil sales is being almost completely circumvented, according to western officials and Russian export data, forcing countries to explore ways to reinforce one of their key economic sanctions against Moscow.”
“Forbidden Russian oil flows into Pentagon supply chain…
“Petroleum products that originated in Russia kept flowing to the Motor Oil Hellas refinery on the Aegean Sea in Greece, a Washington Post examination of shipping and trade data found. They just took a new route, hundreds of miles out of the way through an oil storage facility in Turkey…”
“Denmark could block Russian oil tankers from reaching markets.
“Denmark will be tasked with inspecting and potentially blocking tankers of Russian oil sailing through its waters under new EU plans, as western powers scramble to enforce a price cap the Kremlin has learned to avoid… All of Russia’s oil shipped through the Baltic Sea, roughly 60 per cent of its total seaborne oil exports, crosses the narrow Danish straits on its way to international markets.”
“LNG Dispute Highlights Supply Vulnerability.
“An LNG dispute is threatening to turn into an international problem. Shell, BP, Eni, Repsol, and Italian company, Edison have filed arbitration cases against Venture Global. If the buyers’ claims are true, such conduct could have a significant negative impact on the future growth of U.S. LNG export capacity.”
“Why these industrial giants are betting on the transition to clean energy…
“As the clean-energy transition accelerates in the U.S. on the back of an influx of federal spending, we’re increasingly bullish on big industrial companies that view the shift as an opportunity for growth. Club holdings Linde (LIN), a specialty chemicals maker that has invested heavily in hydrogen projects, and conglomerates Honeywell International (HON) and Caterpillar (CAT) all fit the bill…”
“Wind power industry in moment of reckoning as stocks fall and earnings crumble.
“With the world trying to transition at pace toward cleaner energy, equipment manufacturers are struggling to keep up with soaring global demand, leading to rising production costs and questions over the economic sustainability of large-scale projects from the industry’s major players.”
“The world’s biggest offshore wind developer, Denmark’s Ørsted, has lost two of its most senior executives after it abandoned a pair of windfarm projects off the US coast at a cost of more than £3bn.
“Ørsted told investors that its chief financial officer, Daniel Lerup, and chief operating officer, Richard Hunter, had agreed to step down from their roles with immediate effect because the company needed “new and different capabilities”.”
“Native American tribes fight US over a proposed $10B renewable energy transmission line…
“Work on a $10 billion project that will funnel renewable energy across the West has come to a halt in southwestern Arizona, with Native American tribes saying the federal government has ignored concerns about effects that the SunZia transmission line will have on religious and cultural sites.”
“The Clearest Sign Yet That Commercial Real Estate Is in Trouble… Lenders are issuing a record number of foreclosure notices related to risky property loans…
“Lenders this year have issued a record number of foreclosure notices for high-risk property loans, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis. Many of these loans are similar to second mortgages and commonly known as mezzanine loans.”
“Another day, another housing market record: A homebuyer must now earn $114,627 to afford the median-priced U.S. home, according to Redfin.
“This is up 15% since last year and over 50% since 2020. Meanwhile, the current median household income in the US just $75,000. In other words, the median household income needs to rise 53% for the median person to be able to afford a home. And even then, 50% of people would still not be able to afford a home… We have an affordability crisis.”
“Millions of UK households forced to unplug fridge or freezer amid rising bills.
“About 2m UK households have been forced to turn off their fridge or freezer to save money as they continue to struggle with what poverty campaigners called a “frightening” level of hardship. Nearly half of those households said that since May they had to disconnect their fridge or freezer for the first time…”
“Europe’s problems are far bigger than a shallow recession…
“Economic headwinds are so strong that next year will also be challenging and fading growth potential suggests the euro zone would struggle to expand much more than 1% even with a robust rebound. Deep structural problems mean Europe is bound to trail most other big economic areas for years to come.”
“Finance may be junked from EU climate law, leaked memo shows. Critics say it could be unenforceable.
“A flagship EU law intended to push European companies toward net zero faces being seriously weakened by member states, a confidential document passed to The Associated Press reveals, with firms seemingly no longer forced to implement Paris Agreement goals.”
“Siemens Energy rescue package underwritten by German government…
“The deal is vital to sustaining a €110bn portfolio of clean energy projects planned by the company — a cornerstone of Europe’s green energy transition — which was last month revealed to be in jeopardy amid a lending freeze in the renewables market.”
“Five years on, France still scarred by ‘yellow vest’ revolt…
“The “yellow vest” movement was born on November 17, 2018 when people in small-town and rural France began blocking roads around the country over a planned increase in environmental fuel taxes that hit car-reliant citizens in the pocket.”
“Kyiv and Warsaw again failed to reach an agreement to stop a week-long Polish truckers’ protest at Ukraine’s border, a Ukrainian official said on Tuesday.
“Polish drivers have been blocking roads to three crossings, in what they call a response to government inaction over a loss of business to foreign competitors since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022.”
“EU likely to miss 1 million-round ammunition target for Ukraine, says Germany as war grinds on.
“The European Union’s goal of supplying Ukraine with 1 million rounds of artillery ammunition is unlikely to be achieved, Germany’s defense minister said Tuesday, as Kyiv remains locked in a grinding war of attrition against Russia with winter approaching.”
“Finland considers closing border with Russia amid spike in asylum seekers.
“Finland’s prime minister on Tuesday said while the government had no information if migrants were being encouraged to move toward the border, “it is clear that they are being helped. They have been escorted and transported,” Prime Minister Petteri Orpo, leader of the conservative National Coalition Party, claimed…”
“Japan’s economy sinks into contraction as spending, investment decline.
“Real gross domestic product, which measures the total value of a nation’s products and services, fell 0.5% in the July-September period for the world’s third largest economy, the Cabinet Office said. That would produce a 2.1% drop if the quarter’s performance continued for a full 12 months.”
“Climate change throws Panama into chaos…
“The country was facing a double crisis of droughts threatening the Panama Canal and growing nationwide protests over a mining contract granted to Canadian company First Quantum Minerals. Now, less than a month later, Panama’s business-friendly image has taken a hit due to the prolonged protests…”
“El Salvador slaps $1,130 fee on African, Indian travellers amid U.S. migration pressure…
“Aviation officials did not say whether the measure was aimed at reducing migration and have described the tariff as an “airport improvement fee,” but El Salvador’s government acknowledged an uptick in travelers from those countries this year.”
“Migrants are showing up at the U.S. southern border in historic numbers. Here’s why…
“The government has said it’s a symptom of the unprecedented displacement of people worldwide. Biden has pursued a two-fold immigration policy: punishing undocumented border crossings and expanding legal avenues to apply to get into the U.S.”
“Chicago has become so unpleasant that migrants are fleeing back to Venezuela after being dumped in shelters and refused better paying jobs…
“Now, Illinois’ harsh winters, lack of migrant infrastructure, and ambivalent support from locals has made many people, who undertook the harsh US-Mexico border journey, actually turn around and go back home.”
“Help Wanted: Cuba’s government turns to growing diaspora for investment…
“Cuba wants to tap its fast-growing overseas population for fresh investment to lift its sinking economy, a top foreign ministry official told Reuters this week, as the communist-run nation looks to overcome its worst downturn in decades. Food, fuel and medicine shortages have pushed a record number of Cubans to leave…”
“Bangladesh garment exporters say western brands not paying ‘ethical prices’…
“Big western fashion brands are not paying “ethical” prices for Bangladesh-made clothes, the country’s exporters’ association said, as protests over wages sparked factory closures in the world’s second-largest garment exporter.”
“Bangladesh’s ongoing political crisis is ‘high risk’ for fragile economy…
“The ongoing countrywide road-rail-waterway blockade imposed by the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and its allies has disrupted the supply chains and significantly pushed up the cost of transport…”
“Unscheduled outages: As winter sets in, power crisis worsens in Kashmir…
“Jammu and Kashmir National Conference (NC) provincial president Nasir Aslam Wani Sogami called it ”one of the worst power crises in Kashmir” that has left the residents upset with power outages of eight to 10 hours per day across Kashmir.”
“Over 5,000 Myanmar refugees including soldiers flee to India’s Mizoram for refuge amid border clashes.
“Amid intense clashes between the Chin Defence Force guerrillas and the Myanmar military near the Indo-Myanmar international border, approximately 5,000 refugees, including 39 army personnel, have reportedly sought refuge in northeast Indian state Mizoram’s Champhai area since Sunday…”
“Dust, hail and bank loans: the Mongolian herders facing life without grass…
“… climate breakdown and bad management are destroying Mongolia’s grasslands, 90% of which are affected by desertification. Hundreds of thousands of herders have abandoned their flocks and surrendered to the pull of the city.”
“IMF says central bank digital currencies can replace cash: ‘This is not the time to turn back’…
“CBDCs are the digital form of a country’s fiat currency, which are regulated by the country’s central bank. They are powered by blockchain technology, allowing central banks to channel government payments directly to households.”
You can read the previous “Economic” thread here. I’ll be back tomorrow with a “Climate” thread.
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