Daily updates on climate change and the global economy.

17th June 2024 Today’s Round-Up of Economic News

“‘Step back and reflect’: Researchers warn of nuclear weapons’ increased role in global tensions…

“”We have not seen nuclear weapons playing such a prominent role in international relations since the Cold War,” Wilfred Wan, director of SIPRI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Programme, said in a statement.

“The research institute noted that in February 2023 Russia announced it was suspending participation in the 2010 New START treaty — “the last remaining nuclear arms control treaty limiting Russian and US strategic nuclear forces”.”


“Global spending on nuclear weapons up 13% in record rise.

“Global spending on nuclear weapons is estimated to have increased by 13% to a record $91.4bn during 2023, according to calculations from the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (Ican) pressure group.”


“NATO in talks to put nuclear weapons on standby…

“NATO is in talks to deploy more nuclear weapons in the face of a growing threat from Russia and China, the head of the alliance has said. Jens Stoltenberg added that the bloc must show its nuclear arsenal to the world to send a direct message to its foes in an interview with The Telegraph.”


“Ukraine summit strives for consensus, way forward uncertain…

“Western powers and their allies at a summit in Switzerland denounced Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Sunday, but they failed to persuade major non-aligned states to join their final statement, and no country came forward to host a sequel.”


“World leaders just pledged ‘lasting peace’ in Ukraine. Achieving it is still a long way off…

“It is clear any path to ending the war in Ukraine will cost many more billions of dollars and many thousands more military and civilian lives… After more than two years of fighting, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has bogged down into a bloody impasse.”


“Russia overtook US as gas supplier to Europe in May…

““It’s striking to see the market share of Russian gas and [liquefied natural gas] inch higher in Europe after all we have been through, and all the efforts made to decouple and de-risk energy supply,” said Tom Marzec-Manser, head of gas analytics at consultancy ICIS.”


“How the US Mopped Up a Third of Global Capital Flows Since Covid. De-dollarization narrative swept aside by overseas investors…

““The big boy in town has been getting all of the attention,” according to Jonathan Fortun, an economist at the Institute of International Finance, which tracks global capital. “It has dried out some of the money flows into emerging markets.””


“How AI cops are already patrolling Britain’s streets…

“…as Orwell’s novel [1984] celebrates its 75th anniversary this month, British police are already deploying technologies that would put Big Brother to shame. From the facial recognition cameras watching you shop to the algorithms predicting crimes before they happen, these tools feel as if they’ve been ripped from the pages of science fiction.”


“More Brits are falling behind on their mortgage payments than at any point in the past seven years, according to the latest data from the Bank of England.

“The lingering financial impact of the pandemic and soaring cost of living have left many struggling to cover basic expenses, let alone repay debts.”


“The spectre of the UK’s epic market meltdown two years ago is looming large over politicians as Britain prepares to go to the polls on July 4.

“The fear of so-called bond vigilantes — a term coined in the 1980s to describe investors who sold Treasuries to push back against the US government’s largesse — is coloring almost all discussion of Britain’s finances…”


“‘Euro crisis threat’ as French borrowing costs match Portugal for first time in 20 years…

“Holger Schmieding, chief economist at Berenberg Bank, said that if Ms Le Pen’s party takes control of parliament and investors take flight, the situation “could easily turn into a Liz Truss-style financial crisis”.”


“Protests against hard-Right turn violent in France…

“French police clashed with protesters in Rennes and Paris on Saturday as tens of thousands of people took to the streets in marches against the hard-Right. Police in Rennes deployed tear gas against black-clad protesters…”


“Germany marks veterans’ day for first time since end of Second World War…

“Germany’s retired soldiers marked Saturday with their first Veterans’ Day since the end of the Second World War, breaking the country’s decades-old taboo over celebrating its armed forces. Army veterans held a series of low-key events across the country…”


“Germany presents new military service model to start conscription from next year…

“Germany has been looking to boost the size of its army from currently around 180,000 troops to 203,000 with growing fears of a Russian attack on NATO. For Pistorius, his “preferred model”, would see 18-year-olds fill in digital questionnaires regarding their habits and interest in the army.”


“Denmark’s government is asking citizens to prepare for an attack or other potential crisis by stockpiling supplies of water, food and medicine, and keeping iodine tablets at home.

“A rising threat from Russia has prompted Danish authorities to increase their preparedness and issue recommendations to Danes to do the same.”


“Poland, Baltics step up border controls amid migrant crisis…

“EU officials believe many of the migrants have been organized and aided by Russia and its ally, Belarus, in a coordinated attempt to destabilize the European Union. According to Polish officials, about 90% of the migrants stopped at Poland’s border hold Russian visas, an indicator of Russia’s involvement.”


“Greek coastguard threw migrants overboard to their deaths, witnesses say…

“We showed footage of 12 people being loaded into a Greek coastguard boat, and then abandoned on a dinghy, to a former senior Greek coastguard officer. When he got up from his chair, and with his mic still on, he said it was “obviously illegal” and “an international crime”.”


“Deadly border technologies are increasingly employed to violently deter migration…

“The book is a global story — a dystopian vision turned reality, where matters of life and death are determined by algorithms… I also show how borders are big business, with defense contractors and tech start-ups alike scrambling for profit in a multi-billion dollar border industrial complex.”


“Russian special forces freed two guards and killed several men linked to Islamic State who had taken them hostage at a detention center in the southern city of Rostov on Sunday, the prison service said.

“Intense automatic gunfire could be heard in footage published on Russian Telegram channels.”


“Four Years after the Galwan Clash: Ongoing India-China Tensions…

“Four years since the Galwan clash, bilateral ties between India and China remain strained. In September 2023, when India hosted the G-20 Summit for the first time, Chinese President Xi Jinping did not attend, sending Premier Li Qiang instead.”


“Thousands of Rohingya feared trapped in fighting in western Myanmar…

“Tens of thousands of Muslim minority Rohingya are feared to be caught in fighting in western Myanmar, as a powerful armed ethnic group bears down on junta positions in a coastal town on the country’s border with Bangladesh.”


“In Laos, Southeast Asia’s highest inflation forces some to flee, others to get creative…

“Inflation hit a record 40 per cent in Laos last year and continues to run hot, at around 25.8 per cent as of last month. A weak local currency – the kip – is fuelling elevated prices, after losing around 60 per cent of its value against the US dollar since 2021.”


“Capital flight — the root of Bangladesh’s forex crisis, say experts…

“Professor Selim Raihan, executive director of the South Asian Network on Economic Modeling (Sanem), said tax defaulters, loan defaulters, and money launderers are interconnected and recognised figures.”


“Soaring stocks, collapsing economy [Pakistan]…

“There is near unbearable inflation and unemployment, interest rates are at record highs, the poor are finding it hard to get two meals a day let alone make a living. The country’s natural gas reserves are almost exhausted…”


“Netanyahu reportedly criticises military tactical pause in Gaza amid divisions with IDF…

““When the prime minister heard the reports of an 11-hour humanitarian pause in the morning, he turned to his military secretary and made it clear that this was unacceptable to him,” an unnamed Israeli official told media late on Sunday.”


“US Navy faces ‘most intense combat since World War II’ against Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthi rebels, defense experts say…

“”We’re sort of on the verge of the Houthis being able to mount the kinds of attacks that the US can’t stop every time, and then we will start to see substantial damage,” Bryan Clark, a former Navy submariner and a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute told the Associated Press.”


“‘We need the world to wake up’: Sudan facing world’s deadliest famine in 40 years.

“Sudan is facing a famine that could become worse than any the world has seen since Ethiopia 40 years ago, US officials have warned, as aid deliveries continue to be blocked by the warring armies but arms supplies to both sides continue to flow in.”


“Surge in rebel attacks sparks deadly protests in eastern Congo…

“At least seven people have been killed in unrest in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo’s North Kivu province, local officials said on Saturday, after people took to the streets to protest against a surge in deadly attacks by suspected Islamist rebels.”


“Shootings and extortion create ghost town in southern Mexico…

“Thousands of residents deserted the small Mexican town of Tila, fleeing an intensive three-day siege by heavily armed men and leaving it a ghost town, and are still too afraid to return despite government troops now patrolling the empty streets.”


“Welcome to hell: Inside brutal El Salvador mega prison where thousands of gang members are kept in cramped cells amid merciless crackdown on narco gangs…

“Dramatic new images have emerged showing the inside of one of El Salvador’s brutal mega prisons where thousands of gang members are kept in cramped cells and watched 24 hours a day by masked guards.”


“Honduras to build 20,000-inmate ‘megaprison’ as part of gang crackdown…

“Authorities in Honduras have announced a series of measures aimed at tackling organised crime, including the construction of a 20,000-capacity “megaprison”, as well as “terrorist” designations and collective trials for members of gangs.”


“The new boss of Codelco, the world’s biggest copper miner, insisted the Chilean state-owned group would reverse a severe production slump this year, even as it struggles with a $20bn debt pile.

“Production at the company, which faces delays on four major projects needed to extend the life of its ageing mines, plunged from 1.618mn tonnes in 2021 to 1.325mn in 2023, the lowest level in 25 years.”


“Concerns grow as ‘gigantic’ bird flu outbreak runs rampant in US dairy herds…

“More than three years into a worldwide outbreak of bird flu, the virus continues to expand in the U.S. ..it’s running rampant among dairy cows, turning up in 94 herds across 12 states since March. The latest animal to test positive was an alpaca on an Idaho farm.”


“Former director of the CDC predicts the next pandemic will be from bird flu…

““I really do think it’s very likely that we will, at some time, it’s not a question of if, it’s more of a question of when we will have a bird flu pandemic,” Robert Redfield told NewsNation on Friday… While the mortality rate was 0.6 per cent for Covid-19, Redfield said the mortality for the bird flu would probably be “somewhere between 25 and 50 per cent.””


“Prof Arturo Casadevall: ‘It is hubris to think a fungal pandemic can’t happen to us’…

“Everything in our environment is being affected as temperatures rise; there’s no reason to believe fungi will be an exception… there’s increasing evidence that certain fungi have the potential to unleash new diseases that will harm many more humans in unprecedented ways.”


“I took a £57 prepping course to get ready for the end of the world…

“it’s precisely because I am such a useless urbanite Londoner with zero survival skills – and because the Government has suggested that households ought to become more self-sufficient – that I’ve embarked on this three-week course. In May this year, Oliver Dowden, the deputy prime minister, encouraged families to stock up with enough food and water to survive for three days in the event of an emergency.”


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

If you found value in this content, please help me continue this work by becoming a patron of my work via Patreon. And if you are already a subscriber or have donated – thank you!

14th June 2024 Today’s Round-Up of Economic News

“Conflicts drive number of forcibly displaced people to record high…

“The latest annual assessment from the United Nations high commissioner for refugees (UNHCR) said a sharp rise in the number of people forcibly displaced during 2023 had brought the total to a record high of more than 117 million.”


“Migrants dying in unprecedented numbers on Canary Islands route…

“An unprecedented nearly 5,000 migrants have died at sea in the first five months of 2024 trying to reach the Spanish Canary Islands, according to a report released by migration rights group Walking Borders on Wednesday.”


“Mexico’s tactic to cut immigration to the U.S.? Wear out migrants…

“Driven by mounting pressure from the U.S. to block millions of people headed north, but lacking the funds to deport them, Mexican authorities are employing a simple but harsh tactic: wearing migrants out until they give up.”


“The Federal Reserve’s move to signal fewer interest-rate cuts this year deepens its divergence from peers who have already begun to ease…

“For the world economy, divergence from the Fed matters. Higher US interest rates stoke dollar strength and will continue to lure foreign capital away from rival economies, especially emerging ones.”


“Nigel Farage’s Reform [right wing populist] UK overtake the Conservatives for first time in new poll…

“The findings will come as a body blow to Rishi Sunak after a disastrous election campaign and risks triggering panic among many Tory MPs. The poll results were released minutes before Mr Farage was due to take part in a 7-way debate on ITV…”


“Victory for French far right could trigger Liz Truss-style debt crisis, warns finance minister…

“Le Maire warned that France “simply [does] not have the means to finance [RN leader] Marine Le Pen’s additional tens of billions of euros” in costs associated with the party’s agenda to cut sales taxes and reduce the retirement age.”


“The rise of the far right alarms German business leaders…

“A survey of 900 business leaders last month by iw, a think-tank, found that almost 70% saw the afd’s rise as a risk to Standort Deutschland, shorthand for Germany as a place for business and investment. They fret in particular about what it means for the survival of the eu and the euro.”


“Fistfight erupts in Italian Parliament as tensions rise over expanding regional autonomy.

“Tensions in Italy’s lower house over a government proposal that opponents says will further impoverish the poorer south erupted into a fist-fight that sent an opposition lawmaker to the hospital.”


“European leaders have bowed to American pressure and agreed to a $50 billion loan deal for Ukraine using the proceeds from frozen Russian assets.

“On Thursday, G7 leaders in Italy announced that Ukraine would receive a major financial boost by the end of the year…”


“The euro’s share of global foreign exchange holdings fell last year amid concerns that plans to use frozen Russian assets to finance Ukraine could further erode the appeal of Europe’s single currency…

“Other countries cut euro assets in their central bank reserves by about €100bn last year, a drop of nearly 5 per cent…”


“Russia’s main exchange has halted trading in dollars and euros after a sharp escalation in US sanctions targeted the remaining links between the Russian financial system and foreign banks…

“The impact of new sanctions could be mitigated by Russia’s pivot from what it calls “toxic” internationally traded currencies to the renminbi.”


“‘Sanctions hole’: how secretive routes supply Russia with western tech and consumer goods…

“Internal data from the Russian customs agency shows imports rebounding to close to their prewar levels, researchers say, although at considerably higher prices. Those imports have helped sustain vulnerable industries, such as aviation and the car industry.”


“EU and Ukraine ask Azerbaijan to facilitate Russian gas transit, says official…

“While the EU has cut most of its Russian gas imports, some central European countries still depend on gas from Russia via a pipeline that crosses Ukraine. Austria still receives most of its gas through this route.”


“US reporter Evan Gershkovich to stand trial in Russia on espionage charges…

“The Wall Street Journal reporter was arrested in March 2023 while on a reporting trip to the Urals city of Yekaterinburg and has been held in Moscow’s notorious Lefortovo prison since.”


“NATO to take tougher action on Russian spies, says Stoltenberg…

““We have seen several examples of sabotage, of arson attempts, of cyberattacks, of disinformation,” Stoltenberg told reporters ahead of a meeting of NATO defense ministers set to take place Thursday and Friday in Brussels.”


“Armenia to withdraw from Russia-led military alliance, accusing members of plotting war…

“Armenia will leave a Russia-led military alliance, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan confirmed Wednesday, accusing members of the bloc of plotting with bitter rival Azerbaijan to start a war against them.”


“Georgia’s protesters vow to stay on streets until government falls…

“Thousands of people have taken to the streets of the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, in the past two months to protest the law, which critics have compared to similar measures in Russia. Many of the demonstrators carry European Union and Georgian flags…”


“G7 leaders turn attention to simmering tensions with China…

“Fair trade with the world’s second-largest economy, notably on green technology, will be discussed by US President Joe Biden and the leaders of Japan, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Britain in Puglia. The Group of Seven rich democracies will also be seeking a common response to China’s alleged support of Russia’s military expansion…”


“Europe risks trade war with China by hiking tariffs on its electric cars…

“The European Union has hiked tariffs on electric cars imported from China, drawing a rebuke from Beijing, which sees the bloc as a vital and growing market for its auto industry. Additional tariffs of between 17.4% and 38.1% will be applied on top of the existing EU duty of 10%…”


“US lawmakers pass Tibet policy bill that questions China’s claims over region…

“A bipartisan bill seeking to counter Beijing’s narrative about China’s control over Tibet and promote dialogue between the Chinese government and the Dalai Lama is heading to US President Joe Biden’s desk.”


“Crude propaganda? Rumours abound that Saudi Arabia is set to drop the petrodollar for the Chinese yuan…

“BRICS News reported that a 1974 agreement between Washington and Riyadh had now expired with Saudi Arabia preparing to sell its oil in multiple currencies. [However] there is no evidence that an official pact with a 50-year lifetime exists.” [My bad, but, in my defence, even senior-league commentators like Javier Blas of Bloomberg were taking this seriously].


“Limits on US Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia Draw Review, Showing Shift.

“A top Senate Democrat is reviewing limits put on US weapons sales to Saudi Arabia, signaling warmer ties as the Biden administration pursues a security agreement with the kingdom and seeks to ease the Israel-Hamas conflict.”


“Israeli troops use medieval-style trebuchet weapon in fighting at Lebanon border…

“Video of the weapon hurling a fireball emerged Thursday, sparking equal measures of confusion and amusement in Israel, even as Israeli troops and Hezbollah were locked in some of the most intense fighting of the war.”


“Gaza war: with both sides playing politics, don’t expect a ceasefire any time soon…

“Hamas is persistently reasserting itself in parts of Gaza that have previously been occupied by the IDF. Hamas may have had huge losses of its own, but it is becoming clear that it has not been defeated. And this is having serious consequences for Netanyahu’s government.”


“Two cruise missiles launched by Yemen’s Houthi rebels have struck a bulk cargo carrier in the Gulf of Aden, severely injuring one of the crew.

“The M/V Verbena, a Palauan-flagged, Ukrainian-owned, and Polish-operated ship, “reported damage and subsequent fires on board. The crew continues to fight the fire.”


“DFS furniture chain blames Red Sea crisis for profit warning…

“The company said in an update on Tuesday that the fall in profits was driven in part by Red Sea routing problems caused by the attacks by Houthi militants in Yemen on commercial shipping vessels travelling through the stretch of water.”


“Evidence of Iran and UAE drones used in Sudan war.

“Iran and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have been accused of violating a UN arms embargo by supplying drones to the warring sides in the 14-month conflict that has devastated Sudan. We look at the evidence to back up the claim.”


“ICC prosecutor seeks information about possible Sudan conflict war crimes…

“Karim Khan said in a video statement that he was “particularly concerned by the ethnically motivated nature” of attacks on civilian populations, especially in the western Darfur region, asking people to provide evidence so the ICC could investigate further.”


“Violations against children in conflict reach ‘extreme levels’, UN says…

“The annual Children and Armed Conflict report found “a shocking 21 percent increase in grave violations” against children under the age of 18 in an array of conflicts, such as in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Burkina Faso, Somalia, Gaza and Syria.”


“Riots break out in Buenos Aires over President Javier Milei’s reforms…

“Thousands gathered outside Congress to protest against the bill as it delegates broad powers to the president – a right-wing economist – in energy, pensions, security and other areas. At least 20 police officers were injured and more than a dozen protesters were arrested…”


“Bolivia Deploys Military to Gas Stations Amid Fuel Shortage…

“Bolivia is sending its military to gas stations in a bid to curb the smuggling of subsidized fuel that, according to the government, is causing gasoline and diesel shortages across the country… Bolivia has been struggling with falling oil production and a chronic lack of foreign currency…”


“Uranium Price Surge Reveals a World Returning to Nuclear Power.

“Nuclear power is back in vogue as countries confront mounting pressure to hit climate goals and overcome energy supply strains caused by geopolitical turmoil.”


“What Happens if a Nuke Goes Off in Space? Russia may be planning to put a nuclear weapon in orbit. We have known since the 1960s why that is a bad idea…

“In space… there’s no fireball, shockwave or mushroom cloud. Instead a bomb releases all its power as electromagnetic radiation, including gamma rays and x-rays. This unleashes three waves of destruction.”


You can read the previous “Economic” thread here. I’ll be back over the weekend with a “Climate” thread.

If you found value in this content, please help me continue this work by becoming a patron of my work via Patreon. And if you are already a subscriber or have donated – thank you!

12th June 2024 Today’s Round-Up of Economic News

“Conflict marred more countries last year than at any time since World War II… and there are worrying signs that militarisation will increase, report finds...

“The number of conflicts – driven mostly by civil war – grew throughout the Cold War period and then broadly declined over the period of globalisation from the mid-1990s onward.

“However, after the global financial crash in 2008/9, conflict has picked up again markedly – this time led (just as it was in the 1930s) by conflict between states.”


“Today’s political meltdown looks a lot like the 2008 financial crisis.

“Is America’s political system facing a meltdown? Dire symptoms of a breakdown are evident… The public is irreparably divided on virtually every issue, large or small and vital or trivial. Neither political party is able or willing to compromise on solutions.”


“Americans tired of sky-high borrowing costs could be disappointed this week…

“The [superficially] hot jobs report is a double-edged sword for Wall Street. On one hand, a resilient labor market lessens the chance that the economy will tip into recession. On the other, it puts long-awaited interest rate cuts from the Federal Reserve on the back burner.”


“The UK economy showed no growth in April, stalling the muted rebound from last year’s recession.

“The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said there was zero growth in April compared to the 0.4% growth recorded during March. The economy was unable to maintain momentum after being weighed down by the struggling factory and construction sectors.”


“Trust in British politics hits record low as Brexit and culture wars fuel divide, survey finds…

“A record percentage of people rarely trust any government to prioritise the needs of the country over internal party interests, the latest British Social Attitudes survey has found.”


“We can’t borrow our way back to growth [UK]…

“When 7.3 per cent of public spending goes on interest spending, the debt burden is completely unsustainable – and it’s only getting worse… the pandemic was the second of two major shocks to public borrowing and debt in the past fifteen years. The first of course was the financial crisis of the late 2000s.”


“France’s borrowing costs rise on Macron’s snap election decision…

“Markets analyst Tina Teng told Euronews: “Basically, investors are fleeing French markets. The bond yields rise implies sell off in French government bonds amid uncertainties, coupled with the drop in its stock markets, led by banking stocks.””


“Why far-right EU gains and a French snap election could send a chill through European renewables…

“Populist far-right parties were the big winners of the EU elections, which will likely make it harder for current EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen to push through her Green Deal and could even derail her bid for re-election.”


“As Europe shifts far-right, migrants fear for their futures…

“French author Emilia Roig was more direct: “Acknowledge that fascism has arrived,” she wrote on Instagram. “Let’s speak in the present tense. Denial isn’t helpful, it makes things worse.””


“Europe preparing for war as Ukraine conflict looms large…

“More than three-fourths of European countries spent more on their militaries in 2023, a report has found, as the world’s most peaceful region fears a possible expansion of Russia’s war on Ukraine.”


“Ukrainian agricultural group boss warns Kyiv against export feud with EU…

“The owner of one of Ukraine’s largest agricultural companies has warned Kyiv against prolonging its dispute with the EU over food exports, saying it risks losing the bloc’s support in the war with Russia.”


“US lifts ban on sending weapons to Ukraine’s controversial Azov brigade…

“The US State Department said in a statement on Tuesday that there had been a “thorough review” of the current Azov brigade and “no evidence” of human rights violations had been found.”


“Russia and Belarus begin second stage of tactical nuclear weapons drills…

“Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the situation in Europe was “quite tense” and that such drills and maintaining combat readiness were important in view of the “hostile decisions and actions” by the US and its allies and their “daily provocations”.”


“Russian warships en route to Cuba hold missile drills in Atlantic…

“The drills by the submarine Kazan and the warship Admiral Gorshkov involved firing high-precision missiles at mock enemy targets from a distance of more than 600 km (370 miles), it said in a statement. The Admiral Gorshkov also conducted training in recent days to repel an air attack, the ministry said.”


“US to Widen Sanctions to Curb Chip Sales to Russia’s War Machine…

“The Biden Administration on Wednesday will announce changes that broaden the scope of existing export controls and restrictions to target US-branded goods even if they’re not made domestically, according to people familiar with the move…”


“Taiwan’s energy crunch could ‘throw a wrench’ into the global semiconductor industry…

“Taiwan has endured three major outages in the last seven years, accompanied by a slew of smaller disruptions in the past year. “Taiwan has both an energy crunch and, even more importantly, an electricity crunch,” said the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center.”


“China has a ‘near monopoly’ on many critical minerals. JPMorgan says it could be the next battleground with the U.S...

“China has a “near monopoly” on the mining of many raw materials that are critical for the production of semiconductors and other technologies, JPMorgan said Monday, highlighting the importance of key minerals in the escalating U.S.-China trade war.”


“China urges greater BRICS role as Western sanctions mount…

“China has urged the BRICS bloc of nations to take on greater responsibilities and establish itself as being inclusive to the world, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Tuesday, in the wake of Western sanctions and trade restrictions imposed on the country.”


“Philippines says China poses ‘existential’ threat in South China Sea…

“Last month, Marcos warned that any death of a Philippine citizen by “a wilful act” would be considered very close to an “act of war”. The hostilities have sparked fears of a broader conflict in the region, where Taiwan is also a flashpoint…”


“In Tit-For-Tat Move, India To Rename 30 Places In Tibet In Response To China’s Arunachal Provocation…

“The newly elected NDA government, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved the renaming of 30 places in Tibet, signaling a strong response to China’s nomenclature aggression in the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh.”


“The Indian rupee may dip to an all-time low at open on Wednesday ahead of important U.S. inflation data and new interest rate forecasts by Federal Reserve officials.

“Non-deliverable forwards indicate the rupee will open at 83.58-83.60 to the U.S. dollar…”


“India’s looming financial crisis – the country presents a textbook example of the key elements that signal an emerging calamity.

“Rapid credit growth is akin to a siren song. It lures economies with the promise of prosperity only to lead them into crises. Each financial boom is framed as a story of financial innovation and good times.”


“South Korea’s military fired warning shots after about 20 North Korean soldiers briefly crossed the border over the weekend, officials said.

“North Korean troops in the Demilitarised Zone that separates the two countries crossed the demarcation line on Sunday afternoon…”


“Israel hits deepest strike in Lebanon since clashes began…

“An Israeli air strike hit a convoy of trucks in Lebanon’s Hermel region near the border with Syria, killing several people… Tensions between Hezbollah and Israel has been mounting over the past week…”


“Tensions grow after Israel seizes Gaza-Egypt corridor.

“Relations between Israel and Egypt are under renewed strain. Almost two weeks ago, Israel took control of a corridor running along the entire length of the Gaza-Egypt border. Egypt is Israel’s closest regional ally. The move has raised tensions and is threatening to undo decades of diplomacy.”


“Saudi Arabia’s petro-dollar exit: A global finance paradigm shift…

“The financial world is bracing for a significant upheaval following Saudi Arabia’s decision not to renew its 50-year petro-dollar deal with the United States, which expired on Sunday, 9 June, 2024.”


“US, Saudi Arabia close to finalizing draft security treaty, WSJ reports…

“…the draft treaty would grant Washington access to Saudi territory and airspace to protect U.S. interests and regional partners, the newspaper reported. It is also intended to bind Riyadh closer to Washington by prohibiting China from building bases in the kingdom or pursuing security cooperation with Riyadh…”


“Developing countries face record interest payments as rates rise…

“The world’s developing countries were expected to pay a record $150 billion-plus in interest on external debt in 2023 and again in 2024, according to the World Bank, raising concerns over the potential effect on the global economy.”


“Nigeria is facing its worst economic crisis in decades, with skyrocketing inflation, a national currency in free-fall and millions of people struggling to buy food…

“The pain is widespread. Unions strike to protest salaries of around $20 a month. People die in stampedes, desperate for free sacks of rice. Hospitals are overrun with women wracked by spasms from calcium deficiencies.”


“Riots erupt in drought-stricken central Algeria over months of water shortages.

“Violent riots erupted in a drought-stricken Algerian desert city last weekend after months of water shortages left taps running dry and forced residents to queue to access water for their households.”


“Haitians face catastrophic hunger as country further descends into lawlessness…

“Waves of hunger are flooding the streets of Haiti. “Sometimes I ask people for a bite when I see them eating. But they humiliate me,” said Heugenie. The 70-year-old made her living selling vegetables on the side of the street, until her stall was destroyed by the lawless gangs that roam the capital Port-au-Prince.”


“Food Companies Hope You Won’t Notice Shortages Are Raising Prices…

“Our food supply is on incredibly shaky ground, a confluence of what might’ve once seemed like “black swan” events: worsening climate change, geopolitical strife, a pandemic, wars, supply chain bottlenecks and widespread labor shortages.”


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

If you found value in this content, please help me continue this work by becoming a patron of my work via Patreon. And if you are already a subscriber or have donated – thank you!

10th June 2024 Today’s Round-Up of Economic News

“The green energy ‘transition’ is simply not happening. Nor will it happen soon, or cheaply. We haven’t even reached Peak Wood, let alone Peak Oil or Peak Coal…

““To eliminate carbon emissions by 2050,” Vaclav Smil writes, “governments face unprecedented technical, economic and political challenges, making rapid and inexpensive transition impossible.””


“Shrink the Economy, Save the World? Economic growth has been ecologically costly — and so a movement in favor of ‘degrowth’ is growing…

“The realization that we hadn’t innovated our way out of our ecological predicament, along with inequalities laid bare by the 2008 financial crisis, fueled a more widespread distrust of the conventional capitalist wisdom. Maybe relentless economic growth was more poison than panacea.”


“As US dollar dominance persists, what if the centre cannot hold?

“No state can withdraw from globalisation on its own terms, and the world cannot have one power in effect running monetary policy on behalf of everyone else… The United States is stuck too with strong capital inflows… Where will this vicious circle end? Maybe in currency crises…”


“The Terrorism Warning Lights Are Blinking Red Again… Echoes of the Run-up to 9/11…

“In at least eight appearances before Congress since last fall… Cristopher Wray has identified three different categories of threats to the U.S. homeland: international terrorism, domestic terrorism, and state-sponsored terrorism. All three, he told the Senate Judiciary Committee in December, are “simultaneously elevated.””


“Boeing woes weigh on credit rating as spectre of junk status looms…

“Boeing, a manufacturing pioneer, linchpin of the US defence business and survivor of a century of turbulence in the aviation industry, is facing a once-unthinkable prospect: having its debt rating cut to junk.”


“US struggles to deport illegal migrants at border amid shortage of flights…

“President Joe Biden announced a raft of measures to tackle the surge in migration through the southern border last week as immigration emerges as one of the biggest threats to Mr Biden’s chances of re-election.”


“Critical fuel shortages for commercial flights at airports across Japan have hampered the increase in the number of international flights and adding new routes, local media reported on Saturday.

“A spike in the demand for flights because of increasing inbound tourism has outpaced the supply capacity of petroleum refiners, with the issue further compounded by labor shortages…”


“New Zealand to lift oil drilling ban amid blackout fears…

“The country’s coalition government is preparing to invite energy companies to resume exploration in the three major offshore fields that supply most of its gas. It comes after National Grid operator Transpower was last month forced to warn families to limit their electricity usage to avoid a shutdown during a cold snap.”


“Labour’s net zero plans risk leading to blackouts and public unrest, the Energy Secretary has claimed.

“Claire Coutinho told The Telegraph Labour’s pledge to convert Britain to clean power by 2030 – five years earlier than the Conservatives – would put the country’s energy security in jeopardy.”


“Far right surges in EU vote, topping polls in Germany, France, Austria…

“While mainstream parties kept control of the 705-member European Parliament on Sunday, the 27-member bloc swung palpably to the right in a sign of the durability of anti-establishment sentiment on the continent.”


“Tensions flare on Poland-Belarus border as more migrants arrive…

“Tensions over migration are high across Europe as far-right parties calling for tougher controls face off against centrist movements in European Parliament elections, which are taking place in Poland on Sunday. Here, that standoff has an extra geo-political edge.”


“Macron calls snap French election and Belgian PM to resign after disastrous poll results…

“Mr Macron said he could not “pretend nothing had happened” and admitted the EU election was “no good” for his government. The “rise of nationalists” is a danger to France and to Europe, he said.”


“AFD help inflict worst-ever EU defeat on Olaf Scholz’s party…

“Germany’s hard-Right Alternative for Deutschland (AfD) party shrugged off a string of scandals as it surged in the EU parliament elections on Sunday. AfD claimed second place, exit polls showed, with the centre-Right CDU claiming top spot.”


“NATO Fund Backs German Startup Making Self-Driving Battlefield Robots…

“The North Atlantic Treaty Organization launched its inaugural tech fund, which is financed by 24 of the 32 nations in the military alliance, more than a year into Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. It invests into new businesses in defense, cybersecurity and related areas…”


“Biden, Macron reach agreement on using Russian assets for Ukraine…

“US President Joe Biden said on Sunday (9 June) he had reached an agreement with French President Emmanuel Macron on the use of profits from frozen Russian assets to help Ukraine. Asked if the two men had discussed the issue and whether they had come up with an agreement, Biden replied “Yes and yes.””


“Exclusive: G7 plans to warn small Chinese banks over Russia ties, sources say…

“Leaders gathering at the June 13-15 summit in Italy hosted by Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni are expected to focus heavily during their private meetings on the threat posed by burgeoning Chinese-Russian trade to the fight in Ukraine, and what to do about it.”


“China says US provoking arms race in moves into South China Sea…

“The U.S. poses the largest security challenge in the South China Sea as its military deployment there is turning it into “the whirlpool of an arms race”, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Sun Weidong said in remarks published on Sunday.”


“The Philippines will continue to maintain and supply its outposts in the South China Sea without seeking permission from any other country, the country’s national security adviser said.

“The Philippines national security council said on Saturday it reaffirmed its commitment to uphold its sovereign rights and jurisdiction over the Second Thomas Shoal.”


“Tensions rise as North and South Korea engage in a trash battle across borders.

“For days, North Korea has been launching trash-filled balloons toward South Korea, prompting the nation to blast messages and K-pop music using high-powered loudspeakers toward the North in return. The battle between the two countries dates back to the Cold War.”


“Govt’s higher bank borrowing to affect private credit flow [Bangladesh]…

“The higher bank borrowing by the government will hinder credit flow to the private sector which will adversely affect investment and employment, according to the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI).”


“Sri Lanka’s Debt Reaches Over $100 Billion Amid Ongoing Economic Struggles…

“Sri Lanka’s national debt has surged past $100 billion, reflecting the country’s ongoing economic challenges and efforts to stabilize its finances. The latest figures reveal that unpaid principal and interest now exceed $6.4 billion, highlighting the severity of the fiscal crisis.”


“China gives nod to build dam on Brahmaputra, near Arunachal Pradesh border…

“China’s Parliament on Thursday adopted the 14th Five-Year Plan, the mega blueprint containing billions of dollars worth of projects, including the controversial hydropower project on the Brahmaputra river in Tibet close to the Arunachal Pradesh border over which India has raised concerns.”


“Government institutions default on electricity bills worth billions [Pakistan]…

“In a shocking revelations, various government institutions turned out to be have unpaid dues of Rs 71.16 billion in terms of electricity bills, ARY News reported on Sunday. According to the spokesperson of the Islamabad Electric Supply Company, the Azad Kashmir government tops the list…”


“Israel’s options for war with Hezbollah…

“…the grinding conflict in the north has come into sharp focus again in recent days after cross-border strikes reached a new level of intensity with larger and more sophisticated weaponry that has deepened fears of an all-out Israel-Hezbollah conflict or even a regional war.”


“Israeli war cabinet minister Benny Gantz quits emergency government…

“Considered by some to be a potential challenger for power in Israel, Mr Gantz called on Mr Netanyahu to set a date for elections. Mr Netanyahu responded with a post on X: “Benny, this is not the time to quit the campaign, this is the time to join forces.””


“Israeli Soldiers Exchange Fire along the Border with Egypt as Regional Tensions Rise…

“Israel said one of its troops was “slightly injured” in an exchange of fire along the country’s border with Egypt, which Cairo attributed to drug smuggling. One person in Egypt was killed… Ties between the two countries have been strained since the Israel-Hamas war began.”


“‘Full war’ rages in North Darfur capital that was supposed to be haven...

“In Sudan’s North Darfur state, displaced people and doctors say the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces are attacking hospitals and camps in the capital, El Fasher. Meanwhile… the world is paying little attention as a city that was supposed to be a haven for those forced out of their homes by war is being torn apart.”


“Escalating conflict in Democratic Republic of Congo fuels growing humanitarian crisis…

“Years of violence between factions vying for control in the Democratic Republic of Congo have internally displaced 5.7 million people, according to the United Nations. Since 1996, fighting in the region has led to about 6 million deaths.”


“Venezuelan gang’s arrival shakes Latin America’s safest nation [Chile]…

“Experts say Chile has fallen victim to a regional trend, in which organised crime groups have embraced business models less tied to their home territories in the wake of the pandemic. Cells in different countries exercise autonomy…”


“Why Paraguay is militarising its southern border…

“From a global perspective, Paraguay and its 6 million inhabitants are not a focal point of interest in the region… But its borders… have become well-known hotspots of drug trafficking and contraband, with some even accusing Paraguay of harboring terrorist organizations.”


“How I’m preparing my children for World War III…

“The first way that I am preparing for the possibility of World War III in my children’s lifetime is by reminding myself that my duty as a mother is actually not to keep my children out of harm’s way… Rather, it’s a mother’s job to ensure that her children know how to properly confront danger.”


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

If you found value in this content, please help me continue this work by becoming a patron of my work via Patreon. And if you are already a subscriber or have donated – thank you!

7th June 2024 Today’s Round-Up of Economic News

“Increased conflict and extreme weather events caused by climate change are intensifying food crises, with more than one in four children facing severe hunger, according to a UNICEF report.

“Globally, 27 per cent of children under 5 years of age suffered severe food poverty in 2022, the UN’s child development agency said on Thursday in its biggest ever study of the issue.”


“World War 3 has already started. The West could fall without a shot being fired [Western perspective]

“Rather than a shooting war, we are seeing intense strategic competition. No country can compete with the USA and Nato on the battlefield, so instead our enemies are trying to defeat us through economic and cultural means without firing a shot.”


“US oil and gas production show signs of flattening…

“Clear evidence that U.S. oil production was turning over was masked by unusual weather in December 2023 and January 2024 distorting year on year comparisons. But with the return of more normal weather in March 2024 the lack of net growth over the last six months has become apparent.”


“Gazprom badly hurt by Ukraine war, says company-commissioned report…

“Although Gazprom is hoping that a new pipeline to China can help make up for lost European export volumes, its capacity will only be 50 bcm a year and prices in the Asian nation are much lower than in Europe…”


“Russia nuclear-powered submarine to visit Cuba amid rising tensions with US…

“The announcement came a day after US officials said that Washington had been tracking Russian warships and aircraft that were expected to arrive in the Caribbean for a military exercise. They said the exercise would be part of a broader Russian response to US support for Ukraine.”


“Russia could arm the West’s enemies with long-range missiles if Ukraine uses NATO-supplied weapons to strike Russian territory, Russian President Vladimir Putin warned Wednesday.

“Several countries that have provided long-range weapons to Ukraine, including the United Kingdom, the United States and Germany, have given Kyiv permission to use them to attack targets across Russia’s border in recent weeks.”


“Moscow says it has detained a French citizen accused of gathering information about Russia’s military activities and failing to register as a “foreign agent”.

“”Such information, if obtained by foreign sources, may be used against the security of the state,” said Russia’s Investigative Committee (SK).”


“France to send Mirage fighter jets to Ukraine and train pilots…

“France will transfer Mirage-2000 fighter jets to Ukraine and train Ukrainian pilots, the French president, Emmanuel Macron, has announced… France would also equip and train an entire brigade of 4,500 Ukrainian soldiers, Macron said.”


“Germany will conscript the young, ration food and turn subway stations into bomb shelters during wartime, according to a new government preparations for a future conflict with Russia.

“German officials have released a 67-page document which outlines how the outbreak of war will affect the civilian population…”


“Ukraine ready for EU membership talks, Brussels says…

“The European Commission will recommend the start of EU accession talks with Ukraine this month in a bid to signal support to the war-torn country before Budapest takes over the rotating presidency of the bloc, according to three people familiar with the matter.”


“Inflation fight isn’t over, warns Lagarde as Eurozone cuts rates.

“The fight against inflation is not yet over, Christine Lagarde has warned, after the European Central Bank (ECB) cut interest rates for the first time in five years. The ECB President refused to say that the eurozone has entered a period when it is “dialling back” interest rates.”


“Italian stamp honouring fascist founder of Rome soccer club triggers protests.

“A commemorative stamp honouring the founder of AS Roma soccer club, who was also an infamous fascist, was unveiled on Thursday at the industry ministry, drawing criticism from Jewish groups and opposition parties.”


“A Polish soldier has died after being stabbed by a migrant on the country’s border with Belarus, Warsaw’s military said Thursday…

“As Poles prepare to vote in the EU election on June 9, the soldier’s death could be used by the country’s right-wing and far-right parties, which have long campaigned on anti-immigration sentiment.”


“Romania’s far right evokes Vlad the Impaler — and Donald Trump…

“Both characters have become a source of inspiration for the upstart far-right party, which rose quickly from a fringe anti-vaccination group in the Covid-19 pandemic to become the main opposition force in Romania ahead of local and EU elections on Sunday…”


“Emmanuel Macron: ‘Europe could find itself at a standstill’ if far right wins EU election…

“Europe has never been so threatened,” warned the French leader… The French leader’s party, Renaissance, headed by Valérie Hayer is struggling in the polls, more than 15% behind Jordan Bardella, the head of the far-right National Rally party, according to the latest Euronews poll.”


“EU-China trade war brews as EU embraces Japan to fight off common competitor…

“Beijing has toughened its critical tone towards the European Union’s protectionist measures against China, warning of increased friction in trade relations. As a trade war brews, the EU is uniting with Japan in fending off Chinese clean tech competition.”


“In New Caledonia, ‘No Confidence’ With France After Violent Protests…

“The authorities continue to enforce a nightly curfew and a ban on alcohol sales, while Indigenous Kanak protesters maintain barricades on Noumea’s outskirts and in remote towns like Hienghene.”


“Palau confirms ‘major’ cyberattack, points to China…

“The Pacific archipelago is one of just 12 states worldwide that diplomatically recognise self-ruled Taiwan, which China insists is part of its territory. Taipei said on Monday it was ready to help Palau beef up its digital defences…”


“South China Sea: Philippines accuses Chinese coastguard of blocking sick soldier’s evacuation…

“The Philippine coastguard on Friday accused its Chinese counterpart of blocking efforts to evacuate a sick armed forces member in the South China Sea, calling it “barbaric and inhumane”.”


“South China Sea: Philippine troops accused of cutting Chinese fishing nets near Second Thomas Shoal…

“Official news agency Xinhua reported on Tuesday that military personnel stationed at Second Thomas Shoal on the BRP Sierra Madre had cut nets placed by Chinese fishermen in the surrounding waters.”


“China’s Homeowners and Banks Are Trapped in a Mortgage Mess…

“As China’s property downturn grinds into a fourth year and house prices continue their downward march, an increasing number of mortgages are slipping underwater, placing fresh financial strain on both households and banks.”


“Real Estate Investors Are Wiped Out in Bets Fuelled by Wall Street Loans.

“Syndicators made big purchases that are unravelling with high interest rates, adding distress to an already troubled US property market. It’s an echo of the subprime mortgage boom that led to the 2008 financial crisis: a lending model built on packaging seemingly safe loans…”


“Colombia’s economy could soon be hit by soaring energy costs as the South American country is considering LNG imports to meet rising natural gas demand while its domestic production slumps.

“Large gas and energy-intensive industries could be hit hard by a further spike in their energy costs, as LNG imports could be two or three times more expensive than domestic supply…”


“Milei Begins to Slash Energy Subsidies for Low-Income Argentines… heading into a particularly harsh winter…

“For the first time since Milei took office, low-income homes will see the energy cost of their utility bills double on average in June, while middle class families could see prices rise 155%.”


“Benin-Niger spat deepens with arrests at crude pipeline terminal…

“A prosecutor in Benin said authorities had detained on Wednesday five Niger nationals for allegedly entering Benin’s Seme-Kpodji pipeline terminal under false pretences, deepening a dispute over exports of crude oil from Niger via Benin.”


“Conflicts cause migrations, while routes in the Sahel are getting more dangerous…

“Africans, particularly youths, are having it really hard in countries known to be shutting off escape routes for those dreaming of migrating but with few viable options of doing so safely.”


“Villagers flee in terror as 150 reportedly killed in Sudan rebel attack…

“At least 150 people were killed and 200 injured in an attack by rebel forces in Sudan, local officials and witnesses said, in the latest atrocity in the year-long war that has displaced more than 7 million people.”


“US Seeks to Up Pressure on Houthis in Threat to Yemen-War Truce…

“…the shelving of the peace deal could undo a fragile two-year truce and reignite land fighting among Yemen’s warring factions, potentially drawing in Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states like the United Arab Emirates.”


“Clashes in Jerusalem as thousands of Israelis parade through Muslim quarter…

“Thousands of Israeli religious nationalists have paraded through Muslim parts of the Old City of Jerusalem in the annual Flag Day march, an event that threatens to trigger further violence in the Israel-Hamas war.”


“Israel is on the brink of a second war. Benjamin Netanyahu is under pressure to take the fight to Hezbollah…

“An extra 50,000 reservists have also been called up, and deployment notices are going out across Israel… Hezbollah are notably more formidable opponents than Hamas, both in terms of strategic calculation and materiel.”


“Five reasons financial disasters are hard to avoid…

“Opinions differ on what will cause the next financial crisis. Some expect the rapid growth in government debt to cause problems; others think real estate will be a source of instability. The history of finance suggests trouble often begins in areas people mistakenly believed were safe.”


“Is there a financial crisis bubbling under the surface?

“Officials continue to insist that the banking system is “sound” and “resilient.” But it’s clear there is trouble bubbling under the surface. It’s like the Jenga tower – it only takes removing one block to send the whole tower tumbling.”


“… the global financial system is being refashioned… cross-border capital flows have fallen precipitously, and those which remain are increasingly oriented along geopolitical lines…

“American-led financial warfare has incentivised the creation of parallel systems whose chokepoints are beyond Uncle Sam’s reach… The looming threat is that the entire system fractures.”


You can read the previous “Economic” thread here. I’ll be back over the weekend with a “Climate” thread.

If you found value in this content, please help me continue this work by becoming a patron of my work via Patreon. And if you are already a subscriber or have donated – thank you!

5th June 2024 Today’s Round-Up of Economic News

“The great American boom is finally running out of steam, leaving mountains of debt…

“High borrowing and low personal savings are dashing hopes of an economic soft landing… Citigroup has become the first big American bank to warn that the US has already tipped into a recession.

“Once this process begins, it can snowball very fast into mass business layoffs unless the Federal Reserve moves fast. There is no sign of that.”


“Bond yields are falling. This time, it’s not being treated as good news.

“‘We are back at a point where the Fed might need to help the economy,’ one trader says… a subtle shift appears to be unfolding now in the bond market, in which the question is whether the central bank may need to cut borrowing costs to help prop up the economy.”


“Zero-down mortgages are back sparking fears of being the new subprime loans which caused the 2008 market crash.

“A new “zero-down” mortgage program has sparked concern of fueling another housing bubble given its similarities to the disastrous subprime loans that contributed to the 2008 housing market crash.”


“Thousands of new trade tariffs led by economic superpowers [US, China and EU] could wipe out up to 7% of global GDP, IMF says…

““Trade is slowing down even more than it would be slowing down otherwise,” Georgieva said during an interview with CNBC “Squawk on the Street” co-anchor Sara Eisen at the CNBC CEO Council Summit in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday.”


“Rising global conflict means countries will spend the next 10 years restocking arms, the boss of one of the UK’s largest weapons manufacturers has said.

“Chemring, which describes itself as a key supplier to Nato, said countries are reacting to the wars in Gaza and Ukraine as well as “an increasingly assertive China”.”


“Central banks turn cautious on China’s yuan, keen on dollars and gold…

“The data, from a survey carried out by the think tank and published on Tuesday, challenges – at least in the short term – the trend towards de-dollarisation, the idea that countries will diversify away from dollars.”


“UK faces £33bn hole in finances or return to austerity, thinktank says…

“The Resolution Foundation said the debate between Labour and the Conservatives over the funding of specific pledges was “detached from reality”, with election promises based on cuts that would be hard to deliver.”


“UK clothing sales to EU plummet as Brexit red tape deters exporters.

“UK exports of clothing and footwear to the EU have dived since Brexit, according to a new study that shows the extent to which complex regulations and red tape at the border have deterred firms from sending goods across the Channel.”


“Gibraltar will retaliate if Spain imposes full border checks on the Rock, the British territory’s first minister has warned.

“Fabian Picardo was speaking after the Tories shelved political-level negotiations until after the July 4 general election. “If these talks break down, sorrow might turn to anger quite quickly,” he told the Gibraltar Chronicle on Monday.”


“German Unemployment Up More Than Expected, Damping Rebound Hopes.

“German unemployment rose more than anticipated — undermining expectations that Europe’s biggest economy will recover only gradually this year… “The spring recovery hasn’t really taken off this year,” agency head Andrea Nahles said in a statement.”


“The death of a police officer by an Afghanistan-born migrant is stirring political tensions in Germany ahead of a crucial European election, with four other men injured in the incident.

“Far-right activists from the Alternative for Germany’s (AfD) youth movement took to the streets of Mannheim on Sunday…”


“The far right may not win real power in Europe – but it will influence those who do…

“…while the far right may be the best-represented political ideology in the European parliament, its political influence will most likely again fall well short of its electoral weight. The reason is that EU politics is group politics and the far right is the most divided political “family” in Europe.”


“Cost of going green sparks backlash from Europe’s voters…

“Soaring energy prices because of Russia’s war in Ukraine and the wider cost of living crisis have turned many Europeans against abandoning fossil fuels. And farmers across Europe have blocked roads in anger at environmental reforms. It could spell trouble for the EU’s Green parties at the polls…”


“Polish protesters have resumed their blockade at the Rava-Ruska-Hrebenne border crossing due to Ukrainian agricultural imports, Ukraine’s Border Guard Service said on June 4.

“Polish farmers have intermittently protested at the Ukrainian border since last fall, but the most recent wave of blockades largely ended in late April.”


“Russia has taken out over half of Ukraine power generation…

“Russia has knocked out or captured more than half of Ukraine’s power generation, spurring rolling blackouts nationwide and heightening fears about the future of energy supplies to Ukrainian cities and EU customers.”


“US seeks EU sanctions guarantee to back $50bn Ukraine loan…

“Washington needs the EU to prolong the bloc’s sanctions on Russian state assets, which expire every six months unless renewed by unanimous consent, until the end of the war to ensure the US is not left on the hook for repayments.”


“Ukraine can strike Russian targets with Dutch F-16s…

“Dutch Defense Minister Kajsa Ollongren has reassured Kyiv that the 24 F-16 fighter jets that the Netherlands intends to donate to Ukraine may be used to strike targets inside Russia… “There is not” a Belgian-style restriction, Ollongren said.”


“Nato is developing multiple “land corridors” to rush US troops and armour to the front lines in the event of a major European ground war with Russia…

“It comes amid warnings from the Alliance’s top leaders that Western governments must prepare themselves for a conflict with Russia in the next two decades.”


“French military instructors in Ukraine would be ‘legitimate target’, Russia says…

“”Whoever they are labelled as, whether they are members of the French armed forces or are just mercenaries, they represent an absolutely legitimate target for our armed forces,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told a news conference.”


“South Korea plans to nullify peace deal to punish North Korea over trash-carrying balloon launches…

“On Monday, South Korea’s presidential national security council said it has decided to suspend a 2018 inter-Korean agreement aimed at easing frontline animosities, until mutual trust between the two Koreas is restored, according to the presidential office.”


“A shock election result in India humbles Narendra Modi…

“…the bjp itself appeared to be on course to lose more than 60 seats compared with the last election in 2019, with results mid-afternoon putting its tally at 238, down from 303 in 2019. Crucially, that means that it will rely on its alliance partners to control parliament.”


“China eyes closer ties with Turkey to take on global ‘power politics’.

“Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi tells visiting Turkish counterpart Hakan Fidan that Beijing is keen to work with Ankara to maintain the stability of the global supply chain.”


“Kremlin welcomes Turkey’s reported desire to join BRICS…

“Peskov said there was heightened interest in BRICS – a group comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa, Ethiopia, Iran, Egypt, and the United Arab Emirates – from various states, but said it was unlikely the grouping could completely satisfy all interested nations.”


“The war in Gaza looms over Asia’s geopolitics…

“Western officials may have been unprepared for the depth of sympathies for Gaza among Asian countries — and their frustration over Western hypocrisy… The Palestinian cause is a fiery issue in Southeast Asian countries like Indonesia and Malaysia…”


“New signs of tension between Biden and Israel’s Netanyahu over war.

“In an interview with Time Magazine, President Biden said “there is every reason” for people to conclude that Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is prolonging the conflict with Hamas for political reasons.”


“Israel and Hezbollah Move Closer to Full-Scale War…

“…in recent weeks, both sides say there has been a sharp rise in hostilities. Hezbollah has increased its drone and rocket attacks, hitting important Israeli military installations. Israel, too, has stepped up attacks, targeting Hezbollah sites deep into southern Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley…”


“Desperate hunger in Tigray pushes thousands into the hands of kidnappers and people smugglers.

“Many Tigrayan youths have lost all hope of a future. During the catastrophic two-year military operation launched by the Ethiopian Federal Government against the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), invading forces pounded, burned and looted the region, decimating its infrastructure.”


“As famine looms in Sudan, the people fill gap left by the world…

“In Sudan, if nothing changes, it is projected that 2.5 million people could die by September. Yet the international community has funded less than 15 percent of the aid needed. Aid that does arrive may be blocked or looted.”


“Will Russia’s support for Sudan’s army turn the tide in the war?

“Moscow’s policy of supporting both Sudan’s army and the Rapid Support Forces makes a political resolution to the conflict even more complicated… Russia recognises that in the end, neither side will be able to completely destroy the other, and it would want to be able to maintain close ties with whoever is in power when this is all over.”


“Russia Said to Seek Takeover of France’s Uranium Assets in Niger…

“Russia is seeking to take over uranium assets in Niger held by a state-controlled French company, according to people informed about the matter, in a further challenge to Western interests in Africa.”


“Türkiye, Iran and Morocco Increase their Influence in the Sahel…

“Türkiye, Iran and Morocco are stepping up their initiatives towards ruling military regimes in the African Sahel, seeking to diversify their partners, in the wake of France’s withdrawal from the region.”


“Bolivia truck drivers block roads over fuel shortages…

“On Tuesday (June 4) long lines of vehicles were seen at fuel stations in La Paz, Bolivia’s capital, and several users complained about the lack of diesel. Bolivia’s driver sector announced a 48-hour road blockade demanding a consistent supply of diesel and a regular flow of dollars.”


“The hidden cost of Colombia’s clean energy transition…

“Landowners are finding that it’s more profitable to use their farms for solar parks than for food crops. Do you understand the problem? What’s more important, food for the country or energy?”


“Rotting sargassum is choking the Caribbean’s white sand beaches, fueling an economic and public health crisis…

“Since 2011, vast mats of sargassum seaweed have been washing up on Caribbean islands. On shore, they pile up into a dead and stinky mass. These sargassum events have been occurring more frequently and are lasting longer, and the amount of algae is increasing.”


“When Hydropower Runs Dry…

“Hydropower, the biggest source of renewable energy in the world, was crippled by lack of rain in several countries last year, driving up emissions as countries turned to fossil fuels to fill the gap. To cope with the electricity shortfall, China and India turned to coal plants, and Colombia to natural gas.”


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

If you found value in this content, please help me continue this work by becoming a patron of my work via Patreon. And if you are already a subscriber or have donated – thank you!