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posted on 30 September 2016

Early Headlines: Asia Stocks Lower, Oil Soft, Japan Deflation Strengthens, Trade Backlash, Trump Fades, Veto Override Reconsidered, DB Could Take Down Merkel And Euro, Germany's "Adolfina" And More

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Early Bird Headlines 30 September 2016

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.




  • More Wealth, More Jobs, but Not for Everyone: What Fuels the Backlash on Trade (The New York Times) Hat tip to Rob Carter. Trade is under attack in much of the world, because economists failed to anticipate the accompanying joblessness, and governments failed to help. Bottom line is that wealth and jobs were increased systemically but not well distributed to most localities. Great wealth not well distributed is a formula for revolution - and that is now underway.

The anti-trade backlash, building for years, has become explosive because the global economy has arrived at a sobering period of reckoning. Years of investment manias and financial machinations that powered the job market have lost potency, exposing longstanding downsides of trade that had previously been masked by illusive prosperity.


  • U.S. lawmakers may change September 11 law after rejecting veto (Reuters) U.S. lawmakers expressed doubts on Thursday about Sept. 11 legislation they forced on President Barack Obama, saying the new law allowing lawsuits against Saudi Arabia could be narrowed to ease concerns about its effect on Americans abroad. A day after a rare overwhelming rejection of a presidential veto, the first during Obama's eight years in the White House, the Republican leaders of the Senate and House of Representatives opened the door to fixing the law as they blamed the Democratic president for not consulting them adequately. Econintersect: This is the most ridiculous example of hypocritical political double talk we have seen in quite a while. No wonder even an uniformed American electorate is fed up with their government. See McConnell: Obama was too slow to warn about 'potential consequences' of 9/11 victims bill (Business Insider)

  • U.S.: Wells Fargo illegally repossessed 413 service members' cars (CNN) Wells Fargo will pay $24 million to settle allegations that it mistreated members of the military -- including illegally repossessing their cars. The bank, already reeling from a scandal over fake accounts, will pay $4.1 million to settle Justice Department charges that it seized 413 cars owned by service members without a court order, a violation of federal law. Econintersect: Shades of illegal mortgage foreclosure activity of 2008-2010. Fraudsters not convicted will defraud again.

  • Clinton gets ‘little kick’ in post-debate polls (The Hill) Hillary Clinton appears to be getting a bump in the polls after Monday's presidential debate in which she was widely hailed as the winner against Donald Trump. Pollsters caution that it’s still too early to draw definitive conclusions about the long-term impact of the debate, and note the movement in Clinton’s direction has been modest. But data experts say the Democratic contender has at the very least reestablished herself as the front-runner after the race had tightened almost to the point of a toss-up. See next article.

  • Who will win the presidency? (FiveThiryEight) The Nate Silver forecast has moved significantly in the last 24 hours dropping Donlad Trump's probability of becoming president to 36% in the "polls-only forecast". We reported yesterday's forecast in Early Bird - it was 42%. Florida and Nevada have shifted from leaning Trump to leaning Clinton and North Carolina is teetering on a similar move.‚Äčnate.silver.projections.2016.sep.29


The EU must be gently persuaded to recognize that it is overwhelmingly to its advantage to maintain the single market in financial services, and to put in place appropriate arrangements to ensure its continuation in the post Brexit world. An unnegotiated, unilateral hard exit would be the surest possible way of producing the opposite outcome.


Immigrants appealing through the courts for a right to remain in the UK will soon face a huge increase in procedural costs after the government announced fee hikes of over 500% for some types of appeal through the immigration and asylum tribunals.

There are two stages of appeal against immigration decisions by the Home Office, such as refusal to grant or extend leave as a student, worker, family member or for refugee family reunion, refusal of asylum, or a decision to deport someone. The first way to appeal is to the First-tier Tribunal. After a decision by a judge in this tribunal, either the appellant or the Home Office can apply for permission to appeal against the decision at the second level - the Upper Tribunal, but only on the basis that the First-tier judge made an error of law in the judgement.

From October 10, the fee for an oral hearing in the First-tier Tribunal will rise from £140 to £800 per person. At an as-yet unspecified date there will also be a brand new fee of £455, just for applying for permission to appeal to the Upper Tribunal if the first judge dismisses the appeal. There will then be another new fee of £510 to have that appeal heard if permission is granted.



  • The Deutsche Bank crisis could take Angela Merkel down - and the Euro (The Telegraph) Over last weekend, the German Chancellor Angela Merkel waded into the DB mess, asserting that there could be no government bail-out of the bank. Surely that is an extra-ordinary decision? If the German government does not stand behind the bank, then inevitably all its counter-parties - the other banks and institutions it deals with - are going to start feeling very nervous about trading with it. As we know from 2008, once confidence starts to evaporate, a bank is in big, big trouble. In fact, if Deutsche Bank does go down, it is looking increasingly likely that it will take Merkel with it - and quite possibly the euro as well. See also Is Deutsche Bank the next Lehman Brothers? The denials certainly don't help suggest it's not.

  • The New Star of Germany's Far Right (The New Yorker) Her name is Frauke Petry and she is a beautiful 41-year-old mother and scientist. And she is Germany's most successful leader of the nationalistic far right since Adolph Hitler. In fact opponents demonstrate against her carrying signs "Adolfina" and "die Führerin". She has been elected to the regional parliament in Saxony (one of the 16 states in Germany) and her party, Alternative für Deutschland (AdF), is now getting 15% in national polls.


  • Shimon Peres and the legacy of the Oslo Accords (The Conversation) Shimon Peres, the former prime minister of Israel, has died at the age of 93 after suffering a stroke. A titan of Israeli political life, Peres remained an active player in his country and the region until his death, working hard to promote closer ties between Israelis and Palestinians. He will be remembered above all else for his role in negotiating the 1993 Oslo Peace Accords and for winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994 along with then-Israeli Prime Minster Yitzak Rabin and Yasser Arafat, who was at the time chairman of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO). A peace treaty with Jordan also followed, which established mutual recognition between that country and Israel. See also Shimon Peres Was An Israeli Nationalist First And A Peacemaker Second.


Good afternoon from Aleppo," tweets seven-year-old Bana al-Abed. “I am reading to forget the war."

The accompanying picture shows Bana reading her favourite English book from her home in besieged east Aleppo.

With her mother Fatemah’s help, she is documenting her experience of the Syrian conflict, tweeting as she watches the city she loves being destroyed around her.

Every day she gives her account of the horrors inflicted on her neighbours, friends and family.


  • Plaudits from across the political spectrum (The Hindu) After conducting a cross-border raid on militants in Pakistan who had made an attack within Indian controlled Kashmir, most opposition parties have been publicly supporting the military action, and congratulating the armed forces, even promising future cooperation on matters of national security. There are no signs of international disapproval as yet. The government appears to be placed in a comfortable position. A note of caution came from Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti: she voiced grave concern over the escalation of the situation along the border and warned that confrontation could lead to a “disaster of epic proportions" for the State. She called for restraint and de-escalation of the “war-like situation", and said India and Pakistan must open channels of communication. See also India says hits Pakistan-based militants, escalating tensions (Reuters).


  • Bangladesh is building a dirty and expensive coal plant next to the world’s largest mangrove forest (The Conversation) A controversial new coal power plant being built in Bangladesh is already running out of friends. Environmentalists worry it will spell disaster for the world’s largest mangrove forest, while locals worry about pollution and being driven from their homes. The vast majority of Bangladeshis have been critical of the project since its inception in 2010. Even the business case seems to be falling apart, as costs mount and international investors pull out.


  • Philippines' Duterte likens himself to Hitler, wants to kill millions of drug users (Reuters) Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte appeared to liken himself to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler on Friday and said he would "be happy" to exterminate three million drug users and peddlers in the country. His comments triggered shock and anger among Jewish groups in the United States, which will add to pressure on the U.S. government to take a tougher line with the Philippines leader. Duterte recently insulted President Barack Obama and in a series of remarks he has undermined the previously close relationship between Manila and Washington.


  • Japan CPI, consumption fall again as BOJ-weary households slash pending (Reuters) Japan's core consumer prices fell in the year to August, a sixth straight month of declines and a daunting challenge for the Bank of Japan's relaunched stimulus campaign. Household spending fell 4.6% year-on-year in the month, considerably exceeding the 2.5% drop expected by economists, and highlighting the weakness in private consumption which makes up roughly two-thirds of the economy. A rebound in factory output brightened the outlook somewhat. Price deflation contributed to the lower consumer spending. The 0.5% annual decline in the core consumer price index, which includes oil products but excludes volatile fresh food prices, matched the prior month's drop, which was the biggest since March 2013, a month before the central bank embarked on massive monetary stimulus.

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