Econintersect: Here are some of the headlines we found to help you start your day. For more headlines see our afternoon feature for GEI members, What We Read Today, which has many more headlines and a number of article discussions to keep you abreast of what we have found interesting.
Goodnight, and good luck (Al Jazeera) This is a fairwell essay by Al Jazeera, the global news organization which is shutting down its American operations. Econintersect: We will miss this news organization which we found to been one of the most unbiased reporters of news to Americans.
G20 draft communique says monetary policy alone cannot bring balanced growth (Reuters) A draft of the G20 communique seen by Reuters on Saturday says that monetary policy alone cannot bring balanced growth, as global finance leaders meet in Shanghai to try to agree on confidence-building measures for the world economy. The communique repeats previous pledges from G20 finance ministers not to engage in competitive currency devaluations, but adds a mention of the risk a "potential UK exit from the European Union" would pose to the world economy. At the same time the draft suggests that markets' recent ructions have been overreactions to economic anxieties that do not reflect economic fundamentals. Econintersect: What does "monetary policy alone cannot bring balanced growth" mean? There us only one other policy arena, fiscal policy. The suggested implication is that austerity policies need to be examined.
Clinton Regains Air of Inevitability With South Carolina Win (Bloomberg) Hillary Clinton's crushing win over Bernie Sanders in South Carolina restores the air of inevitability that surrounded her candidacy at the start -- and leaves Sanders grasping for a way to recover from a repudiation by voters of nearly every age, ethnic group and income level in the state. With 99% of the vote counted, it is Clinton 73.5%, Sanders 26%.
How low will interest rates go? (The Washington Post) Since Jan. 1, the average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage has dropped from 4.01 to 3.62%, according to Freddie Mac. Mortgage rates have sunk to levels not seen in nearly a year and are close to their all-time low, prompting economists to reduce their forecasts for rates in 2016. But if you read this entire article the question in the headline is not answered.
More pain ahead for retailers as consumers stay cautious (Reuters) Discouraging results from three key U.S. retailers on Thursday underscored shoppers' reluctance to buy discretionary goods such as electronics and apparel, an indicator that consumer spending would remain muted this year. Electronics retailer Best Buy Co Inc, department store operator Kohl's Corp and Sears Holdings Corp all reported weaker-than-expected sales at stores open at least a year. A decline in stock markets, led by a slowdown in China, has prompted consumers to be more prudent with their discretionary incomes. Even with gas prices at multi-year lows, falling real median incomes have further tightened purse strings.
Americans gained over 500 million pounds last year (CNBC) Weight Watchers reported disappointing earnings Thursday, but there's one figure that should make investors in dieting hopeful: 582 million. That's how many pounds Americans gained collectively in 2015. Through births, immigration and overeating, there has been the equivalent of 1,400 blue whales added to the human biomass of our country in just a year. Econintersect: That sounds like a big number but it is only about 1.8 pounds per capita.
Rookie police officer killed on first day, two others shot in Virginia (Reuters) Three Virginia police officers were shot, one of them fatally on her first day on the job, when they responded to a domestic incident on Saturday, authorities said. The police officers, from Prince William County in Virginia, were shot at a home they were called to in Lake Ridge, about 15 miles (10 km) southwest of Washington, D.C., the county police department said on its Twitter and Facebook pages. Officer Ashley Guindon later died of her injuries, the department said. The department had said in a Twitter post on Friday that Guindon would be working her first shifts this weekend after having been sworn in, adding "Be safe!"
Irish election: Results set to deliver hung parliament (BBC News) The general election in the Republic of Ireland is set to produce a hung parliament after the poor performance in the poll of the existing coalition. Enda Kenny, Taoiseach (Irish prime minister) and leader of the largest coalition party, Fine Gael, said it was a disappointing election for his party. It is likely Fine Gael will remain the largest party, but with a narrow lead over the main opposition, Fianna Fflil. Before the election, both of them indicated that they would not go into coalition with each other. Counting of ballots will continue on Sunday, with the possibility that some seats may not be declared until Monday. While existing coalition partners Fine Gael and Labour have suffered heavy losses, Fianna Fflil, Sinn Féin, smaller parties and Independents are doing well.
Cease-fire brings relative quiet to Syria despite breaches (Associated Press) A cease-fire brought relative quiet to parts of Syria for the first time in years on Saturday, offering civilians rare respite from Russian and Syrian government airstrikes despite some limited breaches of the agreement brokered by Washington and Moscow. Fighting continued against the Islamic State group, which launched a surprise offensive on a northern town and carried out a suicide truck bombing in central Syria. The extremist group, along with al-Qaida's branch in Syria, the Nusra Front, is not party to the cease-fire, which went into effect at midnight.
Two former presidents of Mexico compare Trump to Hitler (Reuters) U.S. Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump's political rhetoric is "racist", and evocative of Adolf Hitler, former Mexican President Felipe Calderon told reporters at an event in Mexico City on Saturday. Former Mexican President Vicente Fox, Calderon's predecessor, also compared Trump to Hitler in an interview with Anderson Cooper on CNN.
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