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posted on 23 August 2017

Early Headlines: Asia Stocks, Oil And Dollar All Down, Gold Up, Trump Does Phoenix, McConnell Loses Faith, EU Nears 4 Years Expansion, China's Excess Savings, And More

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Early Bird Headlines 23 August 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.

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Global

asia.pac.2017.aug.23

  • Policy Stances of Central Banks (The Daily Shot) This chart shows where the various central banks are in their monetary policy stance (on a relative basis).

U.S.

  • Trump unloads in defense of his Charlottesville response at Phoenix rally (The Hill) See also Trump paints himself as the real victim of Charlottesville in angry speech (The Guardian). President Trump on Tuesday night fiercely defended his response to violence in Charlottesville, Va., at his first public rally since his remarks ignited a national debate about whether he had emboldened racists. Speaking at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Trump made passing remarks from a teleprompter about the need for unity and inclusion before veering off-script to attack the news media, Democrats and even Republicans in the Senate whom he accused of distorting his response and blocking his agenda. The president mocked the protesters outside the building and taunted the “anti-fascist" protesters - known as “antifa" - that clashed with the white supremacists in Charlottesville, where three people died last Saturday. Econintersect: This is not helpful for the country. Frank Li, a Trump supporter, explains why.
  • Police deploy pepper balls, gas outside Trump rally (The Hill) Police deployed pepper balls in the streets of Phoenix on Tuesday night as protests raged on after President Trump delivered a fiery, campaign-style speech in the city. Scores of demonstrators gathered ahead of the rally, which came more than a week after Trump drew broad criticism for his remarks in the wake of violent protests in Charlottesville, Va. In his rally speech Tuesday, Trump insisted that he sufficiently condemned hate groups and blamed the news media for not covering his remarks accurately. Econintersect: The reports we saw had unedited video of the president speaking. How is that not accurate reporting? No snide answers, please.
  • McConnell, in Private, Doubts if Trump Can Save Presidency (The New York Times) The relationship between President Trump and Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority leader, has disintegrated to the point that they have not spoken to each other in weeks, and Mr. McConnell has privately expressed uncertainty that Mr. Trump will be able to salvage his administration after a series of summer crises.

In a series of tweets this month, Mr. Trump criticized Mr. McConnell publicly, and berated him in a phone call that quickly devolved into a profane shouting match.

  • US Navy 'to sack' Joseph Aucoin, Seventh Fleet commander (BBC News) The US Navy is to dismiss Vice Adm Joseph Aucoin as commander of the Seventh Fleet following a string of collisions involving warships in Asia, US officials have said. Ten sailors are still missing after the USS John S McCain collided with an oil tanker near Singapore on Monday. Navy officials say human remains have since been found on the ship, which is now in port in Singapore. The crash was the fourth such incident in a year.
  • 7 Senate seats most likely to flip in 2018 (The Hill) Next year’s midterm elections will provide Republicans with a major opportunity to build their majority in the Senate - if they can overcome President Trump’s dismal approval ratings and internal party rancor. The 2018 Senate map heavily favors Republicans, who will only defend eight seats, just two of which are considered vulnerable right now. By comparison, Democrats have to defend 25 seats, including 10 in states that Trump won in 2016. Despite the rough landscape, Democrats received a handful of breaks in the early months of 2017. But with so few offensive opportunities, Democrats will have to thread the needle in deep-red states just to tread water. Here are the seven most vulnerable Senate seats of the 2018 midterm elections as they stand now:
  1. Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.)
  2. Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.)
  3. Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.)
  4. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.)
  5. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.)
  6. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.)
  7. Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.)

EU

UK

  • Theresa May accused of U-turn over EU court’s role after Brexit (The Guardian) The latest Brexit policy paper leaves open possibility of European court of justice retaining say on UK law. Theresa May is now being accused of a climbdown over the future sovereignty of British courts. See also next article.
  • Brexit: No 'direct jurisdiction' for ECJ after Brexit, say ministers (BBC News) Now there is another paper? (See preceding article.) The UK will no longer be under the "direct jurisdiction" of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) after Brexit, a government policy paper will say. Ministers say they want a "special partnership" with the EU, but it is "neither necessary nor appropriate" for the ECJ to police it.

Critics say the word "direct" leaves room for the ECJ to still play a part.

The pro-EU Open Britain group said the phrase paved the way for a "climbdown" over the jurisdiction of the court.

Spain

On Wednesday, Salvamento Mar'timom, Spain’s maritime safety and rescue agency, together with the Spanish Red Cross rescued nearly 600 people from at least 15 different vessels off the coast of Tarifa - the largest figure for a single day since August 2014, when about 1,300 people landed on the Spanish coast in a 24-hour period.

North Korea

  • US hits Chinese and Russian firms over North Korea (BBC News) The US has imposed sanctions on a dozen Russian and Chinese companies and individuals it accuses of helping North Korea's nuclear weapons programme. It comes after the UN Security Council, including Russia and China, voted for further sanctions against Pyongyang. The US Treasury said its actions would "increase pressure" on North Korea, but the move has angered China. US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, meanwhile, praised North Korea for "a level of restraint" in recent days. He said:

"We have had no missile launches or provocative acts on the part of North Korea since the unanimous adoption of the UN Security Council resolution."

China

  • Too Much Savings in China (The Daily Shot) China’s residents consume too little and save too much relative to the rest of the world.

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