Econintersect: Every day our editors collect the most interesting things they find from around the internet and present a summary "reading list" which will include very brief summaries (and sometimes longer ones) of why each item has gotten our attention. Suggestions from readers for "reading list" items are gratefully reviewed, although sometimes space limits the number included.
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Articles about events, conflicts and disease around the world
Investors Race to Escape Risk in Once-Booming Emerging-Market Bonds (The New York Times) The big role played by retail and institutional investor mutual funds and ETFs (electronically traded funds) for the growth of ionvestments in bonds of emerging economy countries is now being played in reverse. As the currencies of these countries nose dive, investors are trying to avoid lrge exchange rate losses by getting out of their investments before the currencies depreciate any more. The selling puts further pressure on the currencies creating a downward spiral. Should all investors decide to sell at the same time the outcome could be very disorderly - like a run on a bank.
National Zoo panda gives birth (CNN) Giant panda Mei Xiang gave birth Saturday, the Smithsonian's National Zoo announced. It was her third cub, the first two were born in 2005 and 2013. But wait - there is more. See next article.
Palmyra's Baalshamin temple 'blown up by IS' (BBC News) Islamic State militants have destroyed Palmyra's ancient temple of Baalshamin, Syrian officials and activists say. But just when it happened is not clear. Syria's head of antiquities was quoted as saying the temple was blown up on Sunday. The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that it happened one month ago. IS took control of Palmyra in May, sparking fears the group might demolish the Unesco World Heritage site. The group has destroyed several ancient sites in Iraq.
One Year After War, People of Gaza Still Sit Among the Ruins (The New York Times) The men of Shejaiya district of Gaza near the border with Israel still come daily to sit vigil in the desolate ruins of their neighborhood, drinking tea and playing chess. But these days, there are also clusters of construction workers on Shejaiya’s dirt paths, finally pouring a few cement foundations and hammering together wood planks. One year after the 2014 war ended there are only a few signs of rebuilding for the 18,000 homes destroyed.
Fading Economy and Graft Crackdown Rattle China’s Leaders (The New York Times) Senior party officials have reportedly been advising President Xi Jinping to back off on his anti-corruption drive for fear of advewrse effects on the nation's economy. As China's economy appears to be slowing further, these pressures can only increase.
China share slide: Pension fund to invest in stock market (BBC News) China plans to let its main state pension fund invest in the stock market for the first time, the country's official news agency, Xinhua, has reported. Under the new rules, the fund will be allowed to invest up to 30% of its net assets in domestically-listed shares. China's main pension fund holds 3.5tn yuan ($548bn; £349bn), Xinhua said. The move is the latest attempt by the Chinese government to arrest the slide in the country's stock market.
China did not devalue its currency sharply, and it has not embraced a currency war, at least not so far. What it has done is make very modest adjustments both in the value of its currency and in the manner in which it trades. Those moves continue an agonizingly slow process that has been underway for more than 35 years. They are a small but important part of China’s transformation into a modern nation.
With Force Deployments, North Korea Raises Stakes of Talks With South (The New York Times) North Korea has deployed twice as many artillery pieces as usual along the border with South Korea as of today (Sunday) Sunday, and most of its submarines had departed from their bases, as the two Koreas held a second day of talks to try to break a tense military standoff, officials said. The North calls broadcasts by 11 batteries of propaganda loudspeakers along its border with the South, which include criticism of its political system and its leader, Kim Jong-un, an “act of war.” Econintersect: In other words, if you don't stop "shooting words" we will "shoot bullets and missiles".
The evolution of American energy consumption since 1776 (Elena Holodny, Business Insider) Econintersect: Burning wood (a renewable) was almost the exclusive source of energy before 1850. Could we ever get to that ;evel of renewable energy in the future? Without a breakdown of society and a return to primitive life?
Other Economics and Business Items of Note and Miscellanea
What does a world without full-time jobs look like? (CNN Money) Technology is evolving to replace more and more human jobs. One example is the possibility of eliminating most human drivers (the U.S. biggest occupation) with self-driving vehicles. Automation may also replace the jobs of many retail salespeople, cashiers, office clerks and food and beverage workers. For more see A World Without Work (The Atlantic). See also next article.
The jobs that are most threatened by technology (CNN Money) (See next article for jobs not being replaced - yet.) Researchers Ian Stewart, Debapratim De and Alex Cole found that jobs that require a routine have declined the most because they can be easily substituted by technology. Among them:
-- Footwear and leather working jobs, which have declined 82% since 1992.
-- Weavers and knitters (-79%)
-- Metal making and treating process operators (-70%)
-- Typists and related keyboard occupations (-57%)
-- Secretaries (-52%)
-- Energy plant workers (-51%)
-- Farm workers (-50%)
-- Metal machine setters and setter-operators (-44%)
Specifically, the independent study found that the number of nursing jobs skyrocketed 909% since 1992. Teaching jobs ballooned 580%.
Other industries that have benefited significantly:
-- Management consultants and business analysts (+365%)
-- I.T. managers (+195%)
-- Welfare, housing, youth and community workers (+183%)
-- Care workers and home carers (+168%)
-- Actors, dancers, entertainment hosts, producers and directors (+156%)
-- Financial managers (+132%)
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