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posted on 17 January 2017

Early Headlines: Asia Stocks Mixed, Oil And Dollar Steady, Robots Are Coming, Trump Vows Ins. For All, May Goes For Hard Brexit, China Wants To Build US Infrastructure And More

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Early Bird Headlines 17 January 2017

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.






Gundlach: “A strong dollar keeps inflation lower. It is helpful to the bond market. A weak dollar isn’t helpful to the bond market. However, I brought along a quote from President-elect Trump today because it makes me think. He said, “While there are certain benefits to a strong dollar, it sounds better to have a strong dollar than it actually is." Is it really a given that Trump will bring us a strong dollar if he is supposed to be helping the forgotten middle class?"

  • Trump vows ‘insurance for everybody’ in Obamacare replacement plan (The Washington Post) President-elect Donald Trump said in a weekend interview that he is nearing completion of a plan to replace President Obama’s signature health-care law with the goal of “insurance for everybody", while also vowing to force drug companies to negotiate directly with the government on prices in Medicare and Medicaid. Trump declined to reveal specifics in the telephone interview late Saturday with The Washington Post, but any proposals from the incoming president would almost certainly dominate the Republican effort to overhaul federal health policy as he prepares to work with his party’s congressional majorities.

  • What I found behind Trump’s showy façade (The Times) Michael Gove tells the inside story of his exclusive interview with the US president-elect. Gove was clearly smitten.

  • You Draw It: What Got Better or Worse During Obama’s Presidency (The New York Times) Have some fun with this article. Guess how various factors changed during the Obama years and then The NYT will show you the actual data. Below is the Econintersect guess (yellow) and The NYT provided actual (blue) for the national debt as a percentage of GDP.



  • Theresa May to lay out clean break from EU (Financial Times) Theresa May will test the nerves of currency markets on Tuesday when she declares that Britain is making a clean break from the EU and will not seek a deal that leaves the country “half in and half out". Mrs May’s comments will be seen as confirmation that Britain is leaving the single market (sometimes referred to as “a hard Brexit") although she will leave open the door to the UK opting back in to parts of the customs union.

  • Theresa May vows to turn Britain into "a great global trading nation" (City A.M.) Prime Minister Theresa May will today vow to make Britain “a great global trading nation" in an eagerly-awaited landmark speech on Brexit. Speaking at Lancaster House later today, May will set out 12 key negotiating objectives for the UK, underpinned by promises to provide certainty and clarity, and to create a stronger, fairer and more global Britain. In what will be seen as the Prime Minister advocating a “clean" or so-called hard Brexit, she will seemingly rule out membership of either the Single Market or the Customs Union by signalling her intention to secure a relationship with the EU “unlike that enjoyed by any other nation".


  • French Socialists panic as Macron captures left vote (The Times) Panic swept through France’s traditional parties yesterday amid fears that the independent centrist rising up the opinion polls could eclipse them all in the battle to become president. Emmanuel Macron, 39, a relative political novice who is threatening to reshape French politics, became the target of scorn and contempt as his rivals tried to halt his bandwagon.


  • Erdogan plotted purge before coup, say Brussels spies (The Times) President Erdogan of Turkey planned to purge opposition forces in the military before July’s attempted coup, according to a secret EU intelligence report. The European intelligence contradicts the Turkish government’s claim that Fethullah Gülen, an exiled cleric, was behind the plot to overthrow the Turkish government. Ankara is seeking Mr Gülen’s extradition from the US.


  • Trump could be the best thing that’s happened to China in a long time (The Washington Post) China is becoming far less dependent on foreign markets for its growth. Ten years ago, exports made up a staggering 37% of China’s gross domestic product. Today they make up just 22% and are falling. China has changed. Western brands there are rare, and the country’s own companies now dominate almost every aspect of the huge and growing domestic economy. Few businesses take their cues from U.S. firms anymore. Technology companies are innovating, and many young Chinese have boasted that their local versions of Google, Amazon and Facebook were better, faster and more sophisticated than the originals. The country has become its own, internally focused universe. The next stage in China’s strategy is apparently to exploit the leadership vacuum being created by the United States’ retreat on trade. As Trump was promising protectionism and threatening literally to wall off the United States from its southern neighbor, Chinese President Xi Jinping made a trip through Latin America in November, his third in four years. He signed more than 40 deals, Bloomberg reported, and committed billions of dollars of investments in the region. With Trump withdrawing from TPP, China will also have a free path in Asia.

  • China's sovereign wealth fund wants to help Trump revamp US infrastructure (CNBC) President-elect Donald Trump's plans to goose infrastructure spending will offer strong investment opportunities, said Ding Xuedong, chairman of China's sovereign wealth fund, China Investment Corp. (CIC). (Econintersect: In the future your highway, bidge and tunnel tolls could go to China.) Ding told CNBC in translated comments:

"Trump calls for expansionary fiscal policy and more investments in U.S. infrastructure. The upgrades and the expansion mean massive investment. The U.S. government doesn't have the money, private investors in the U.S. don't have the money and this is where the foreign investors come in."


Research touted by the resources minister that reportedly suggests Australia can rely on coal to meet emissions reduction has been attacked by experts and appears to have been misreported.

The Australian reported on Tuesday that research conducted by the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science - and commissioned by Matt Canavan, the federal minister for resources - showed Australia could cut its emissions by 27% if it replaced its existing coal power stations with the more efficient “ultra-supercritical" technology.

If true, that would get the country close to its 2030 target, which is a reduction of 28% below 2005 levels.

However, a summary of the analysis seen by Guardian Australia suggests the new coal technology - under a very expensive demolition and construction program - could reduce Australia’s emissions by 12% at most.

In fact, to reduce Australia’s emissions by 27% by relying on reductions in the electricity industry alone, the sector’s emissions would need to be reduced to almost zero. Australia’s entire electricity sector only accounts for about a third of its carbon emissions.


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