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 trades lower, as oil prices drop; Westpac shares down 3.7% (CNBC) Asian stocks fell modestly Thursday, taking cues from declines in U.S. stocks after a string of top-flight retail companies released disappointing earnings. In Australia, the benchmark ASX 200 was down 0.29%, led by a 0.97% decline in the financials sub-index, which makes up nearly 50% of the broader benchmark.
Donald Trump Is Considering Newt Gingrich for Vice Presidential Role (Bloomberg) Donald Trump has discussed in recent days the possibility of selecting former House Speaker Newt Gingrich as his vice presidential running mate, according to multiple people familiar with the discussions. The presumptive Republican nominee told the Associated Press that he has narrowed his vice presidential list to "five or six" candidates, and has named Corey Lewandowski to head up the vetting process "with a group" of staffers.
Trump draws even with Clinton in national White House poll (Reuters) Republican Donald Trump pulled even with Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll released on Wednesday, in a dramatic early sign that the Nov. 8 presidential election might be more hotly contested than first thought. While much can change in the six months until the election, the results of the online survey are a red flag for the Clinton campaign that the billionaire's unorthodox bid for the White House cannot be brushed aside.
US Election 2016: Donald Trump softens stance on Muslim ban (BBC News) Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump appears to have softened his stance on temporarily barring Muslims from traveling to the US. Responding to remarks by London Mayor Sadiq Khan, Mr Trump told Fox News Radio the ban was "just a suggestion".
Aside from Super-Rich, All Americans are poorer this century (Informed Comment) Hat tip to Doomstead Diner. In 2014, a three-person household was middle class if its annual income fell between US$42,000 and US$125,000. According to that standard, middle-class adults now make up less than half the population in cities such as New York, Los Angeles, Boston and Houston. Indeed, the decline has been felt in 90% of U.S. metropolitan areas. Soon, researchers predict, the middle class may no longer be the largest class in the country.
Turkey 'losing hope' for EU visa-free deal (BBC News) The Turkish minister for European Union affairs has told the BBC he is losing hope of getting a deal on visa-free travel for Turks within Europe. Volkan Bozkir said changing anti-terror laws in Turkey would be impossible. The EU insists that Turkey needs to narrow its definition of terrorism - as well as meet four other key criteria - to qualify for visa-free travel. It is part of a larger agreement between the two sides aimed at easing Europe's migration crisis.
States hesitant to acknowledge drought (The Hindu) The Supreme Court said on Wednesday that Bihar, Gujarat and Haryana were hesitant to even acknowledge, let alone address, a drought or a drought-like situation. They had not disclosed the full facts about the conditions prevailing in their States. It was hearing a PIL filed by Swaraj Abhiyan seeking relief for drought-hit regions in the country. The states apparently are trying to avoid the expense of supplying relief. See also Supreme Court raps 'ostrich-like attitude' of 3 states on drought situation (First Post India)
New times, new ties: India-US defence bill will be closely watched by Pakistan and China (First Post India) It's now beyond the shadow of a doubt that the US is investing in a long-term strategic partnership with India, and has identified China's growing military assertiveness as a threat. Since the US and India are not treaty allies, Democratic Virginia Senator Mark Warner and Republican Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn have introduced legislation in the Senate to institutionalize the US-India security partnership. The legislation seeks to elevate India to the same status as America's allies in the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, as well as its other major treaty partners like Japan, Australia, New Zealand and Israel, for the purpose of arms-sales notifications. Both China and Pakistan are likely to sit up and take note of the move as many countries have sought and been denied this status.
UK Turns Down India's Request To Deport Vijay Mallya (India Today) Hat tips to Sanjeev Kulkarni and Roger Erickson. The United Kingdom has turned down the request of the Indian government for the deportation of liquor baron, Vijay Mallya. This comes as a serious blow to India's effort to bring back home defaulter tycoon Vijay Mallya. The UK government has told India that it is not imperative on it to hand over Vijay Mallya despite the tycoon loosing his passport after the India revoked it. Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson,Vikas Guru has said that the British say that under the 1971 immigration act, the UK does not require a valid passport in order to remain in the United Kingdom. See also After failure to deport, ED to attach Mallya's India assets worth Rs 9,000 cr (First Post India).
Tokyo Olympics: €1.3m payment to secret account raises questions over 2020 Games (The Guardian) A seven-figure payment from the Tokyo Olympic bid team to an account linked to the son of the disgraced former world athletics chief Lamine Diack was apparently made during Japan's successful race to host the 2020 Games, the Guardian has learned. The alleged payment of about €1.3 million (£1 million), now believed to be under French police scrutiny, will increase pressure on the International Olympic Committee to investigate properly links between Diack's regime and the contest to host its flagship event. It also raises serious questions over Tokyo's winning bid, awarded in 2013.
Hong Kong Property Market in 'Free Fall': Hayman's Bass (Bloomberg) Kyle Bass, the hedge-fund manager who's wagering on a slowdown in China's economy, said Hong Kong's property market is in "free fall" and the credit expansion in Southeast Asian emerging markets will unravel.
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