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Asia equities slip, dollar strengthens above 100 handle (CNBC) Asian shares fell on Thursday after a mixed start, amid uncertainty over the U.K.'s exit from the European Union and as the dollar strengthened. The dollar broke above the 100 handle it has hovered at for the past eight sessions, to trade at 100.05 against a basket of currencies. Global benchmark Brent crude slipped 0.04% to $52.40 a barrel and U.S. crude was down 0.08% at $49.55. Spot gold was down 0.22% to trade at $1,249.96 per ounce.
Dirty Air From Global Trade Kills At Home And Abroad (Bloomberg) A study that measures the human toll of air pollution from global manufacturing and trade shows how buying goods made far away can lead to premature deaths both there and close to home. More than 750,000 people die prematurely from dirty air every year that is generated by making goods in one location that will be sold elsewhere, about one-fifth of the 3.45 million premature deaths from air pollution. The study says 12% of those deaths, about 411,000 people, are a result of air pollution that has blown across national borders.
Senators vow cooperation on Russia amid House furor (The Hill) The leaders of the Senate Intelligence Committee on Wednesday sought to distance their investigation of Russia’s interference in the election from the partisan brawl that is consuming the House. While House Intelligence Committee members say their probe has ground to a halt, Sens. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Mark Warner (D-Va.) told reporters together that their committee is making steady progress and is "within weeks" of completing an initial review of key documents. Burr said:
"We're not asking the House to play in any role in our investigation and we don’t plan to play any role in their investigation."
Layoffs at UTC’s Huntington plant began recently. The facility will be closed by early 2018. The Carrier fan-coil lines and related jobs will be gone by the end of this year. “I wish I could sit here and say the people are going to be all right," Chuck Jones says. “That ain’t the f---ing case. A lot of these people’s lives are going to be ruined."
Trump’s agenda is now squarely in Mitch McConnell’s, and the Senate’s, hands (The Washington Post) The daunting effort to salvage the Republican Party’s governing agenda has fallen suddenly and squarely on the shoulders of one man: Mitch McConnell. After the GOP’s humiliating health-care defeat in the House last week, the Senate majority leader is under heavy pressure to put President Trump’s to-do list back on track by confirming his Supreme Court nominee and averting a late-April federal government shutdown - all in the face of intensifying Democratic resistance.
North Carolina leaders reach deal to repeal transgender bathroom law (The Hill) A year-long debate over transgender access to public bathroom and locker room facilities seemed to come to an end late Wednesday as Republicans and Democrats reached a last-minute agreement that will void a controversial North Carolina law. Gov. Roy Cooper (D), state Senate President Phil Berger (R) and state House Speaker Tim Moore (R) announced Wednesday night they had agreed to repeal House Bill 2, a measure that blocked local governments from allowing transgender residents to access the bathroom facilities of their choice.
London Office Values Could Fall by a Third, Morgan Stanley Says (Bloomberg) If potential property buyers lose confidence in their ability to charge more for vacant space when it becomes available, prices will drop sharply, especially given the new supply of offices under construction, Bart Gysens, an analyst at the bank, wrote in a note to clients Wednesday.
This Chinese Stock Soared 4,500% on Nasdaq and No One Knows Why (Bloomberg) Shares of Wins Finance Holdings Inc., a company that guarantees loans for small businesses in China and leases equipment to them, have soared as much as 4,555% since debuting on Nasdaq in 2015. The firm’s market value surpassed $9 billion in February, about four times as much as LendingClub Corp., an online lender with 50 times the revenue. Even Wins said in a release that it had no idea what drove the surge in its stock, which boasts the best performance in the Nasdaq Composite Index over the past 12 months.
“The Rio Grande, what side of the river are you going to put the wall? We’re not going to put it on our side and cede the river to Mexico. And we’re probably not going to put it in the middle of the river."
Zinke’s suggestion? We build it on the Mexican side of the river so we don’t “cede" that territory to our southern neighbors. There are a few problems with that idea, but one is more immediate than others: Under Zinke’s formulation, we’ve already “ceded" a lot of land to Mexico.
Here’s part of the border between Mexico and Texas near where the Rio Grande enters the Gulf of Mexico. Areas in white are in the United States; the brown line is the existing wall, miles and miles of which already exist. Everything south of the brown line that is colored white is land that has been “ceded" - including, in this case, the Sabal Palm Sanctuary.
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