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posted on 20 April 2016

Early Headlines: Asia Stocks Drop, Oil Declines, Trump And Clinton Crush Opponents,Major Threats To Germany, Saudis Borrow For Consumption, China Real Estate Improving And More

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Early Bird Headlines 20 April 2015

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.



  • Asia markets retrace gains, Shanghai drops 2.6% (CNBC) Asian markets retraced much of their early gains on Wednesday afternoon, with Chinese mainland markets dropping sharply. Nomura, in a note Wednesday, advised taking money off the table in China's market.

  • Oil turns tail, takes stocks with it (Reuters) All the air was sucked out of Asian shares on Wednesday as oil prices took a fresh spill on news Kuwaiti oil workers ended a three-day strike, leaving markets suddenly directionless. The deflating mood was reflected in a 0.3% drop in EMINI futures for the S&P500 ESc1 and broad demand for safe-haven U.S. Treasuries. Oil prices again led the way by reversing much of Tuesday's sharp gains. Brent crude LCOc1 shed 83 cents to $43.20 a barrel, while U.S. crude oil CLc1 sank $1.02 to $40.11

  • Saudis are going for the kill but the oil market is turning anyway (The Telegraph) Ambrose Evans-Pritchard says that OPEC is a cartel no more. The shots are being called by the Saudi's as they play hardball against Russia's aging and soon to be declining developed oil fields and the cracking production in the U.S. Demand is rising as production is slipping around the world so this article says a balanced market is close at hand.

  • Ad blockers are breaking the internet, study finds (The Telegraph) Ad blockers don't just block ads on the internet - they actually break websites such as British Airways and Vodafone, a new study has found. According to tests conducted on the UK's 100 most popular websites, ad blockers didn't just block pop-ups, but accidentally corrupted useful parts of a website, such as an airline check-in screens or retail order tracking pages. If you were browsing, all you would see is an error message or simply a chunk missing on screen, but no explanation for what was behind it. In the study by London ad-tech company Oriel, the researchers tested 24 common ad blockers, including Adblock, Adblock Plus and uBlock Origin, on a range of popular websites including BA, Aer Lingus, RyanAir, Vodafone, P&G and Land Rover.


  • Trump, Clinton Win New York Primaries to Control Their Races (Bloomberg) Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton won their New York presidential primaries Tuesday, ending losing streaks for both campaigns and allowing the two front-runners to reassert control over their party nominating fights. Clinton's victory makes her march to the nomination all but unstoppable. Sanders, a Vermont senator, will determine his path forward in the campaign after five Northeastern primaries on April 26, aides said, contests where the former secretary of state is favored. Trump, the billionaire real-estate mogul, got a major boost in his quest to secure the Republican nomination with a majority of delegates but could not eliminate the possibility of a contested convention. He won at least 89 of New York's 95 Republican delegates, according to the Associated Press.

  • Federal appeals court sides with transgender teen, says bathroom case can go forward (The Washington Post) A federal appeals court in Richmond has sided with a transgender high school student, saying that he can proceed with his lawsuit arguing that his school board's decision to ban him from the boys' bathroom is discriminatory. In backing high school junior Gavin Grimm, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit deferred to the U.S. Education Department's interpretation of policies that give transgender students access to the bathrooms that match their gender identities rather than their biological sex. The federal department has said that denying transgender students access to the school bathrooms of their choice is a violation of Title IX, which prohibits gender discrimination at schools that receive federal funding. Econintersect: Does this mean the question of whether some bearded men can be forced to use the Ladies' Rest Room and some miniskirted women the Men's Rest Room will go to the Supreme Court?

  • On Immigration, The Supreme Court Sounds More Like Congress (The New Yorker) The author suggests that the arguments and questions today at the SCOTUS sounded more like a discussion of dogma than constitutional law.


  • These major economies are threat to Germany (CNBC) China (5th largest) and the U.K. (3rd) are among Germany's largest export markets. As such, an economic slowdown in China or a "Brexit" (if the U.K. votes to leave the European Union on June 23) could directly damage Germany's economy and demands for its goods.


  • The Palestinian Question: Why the Two-State Solution is Kaput. (Chuck Spinney, The Blaster) Hat tip to Roger Erickson. CS has contributed to GEI. According to Chuck Spinney, the two state solution was never a viable option for Israel. He says that to understand why all you have to do is follow the water - it explains exactly what the West Bank settlement pattern has been.

Saudi Arabia

  • Saudi Arabia takes out $10bn in bank loans (Financial Times, CNBC) Saudi Arabia is raising $10 billion from a consortium of global banks as the kingdom embarks on its first international debt issuance in 25 years to counter dwindling oil revenues and reserves. The landmark five-year loan, a signal of Riyadh's newfound dependence on foreign capital, opens the way for Saudi to launch its first international bond issue. It comes as the sustained slump in crude encourages other Gulf governments, such as Abu Dhabi, Qatar and Oman, to tap international bond markets. Econintersect: Borrowing to support consumption is generally not a good idea.


  • Vietnam emerges as contender for major textile exporter (Nikkei Asian Review) Vietnam is emerging as a potential new world production center of textile products, as major global apparel makers are expanding their production in the Southeast Asian country. According to one estimate, Vietnam's textile exports will double in the decade from 2015 to 6 trillion yen ($55 billion) over the next ten years.


  • Chinese Housing Market Shakes Off a Slump (The New York Times) China's slowdown, which has cast a shadow over the global economy and worried investors around the world, stems in part from a deep slump in its crucial property market. Now that slump appears to be easing, as construction cranes return in some cities and real estate offices in some of the best neighborhoods fill up again with buying customers. Prices for new homes in the country's biggest cities are rising sharply, led by the southern boomtown of Shenzhen, where prices jumped a staggering 62% in March, compared with the same period a year earlier, according to official data released on Monday.


  • Australia leading index sinks to 4 year low (Macro Business) The six month annualized growth rate in the WestpacMelbourne Institute Leading Index, which indicates the likely pace of economic activity three to nine months into the future, fell from - 1.07% in February to - 1.53% in March.


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