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International criticism mounts over Amazon fires

Ireland’s prime minister said there was “no way” his country could support a big trade pact involving Brazil if the South American nation did not honour its environmental commitments, deepening an angry international reaction to fires sweeping through the Amazon rainforest.

Leo Varadkar also accused Brazil’s president Jair Bolsonaro of an “Orwellian” attempt to blame the fires on environmental non-governmental organisations, after Mr Bolsonaro said he was suspicious that they could be involved.

Fears grow World Bank board could 'compromise' on accountability reforms

LONDON — Civil society groups have urged the World Bank’s board of directors to give its inspection panel tougher powers in order to effectively hold the institution to account, as a long-delayed review looks set to end in “compromise.”

After nearly two years of deliberations, insiders told Devex that the bank’s board plans to finalize a package of reforms to the panel ahead of the upcoming annual meetings in October.

History Will Remember the Trade War’s Economic Impact, Not the Fed’s

Economists see recessions as complex phenomena with multiple causes. Historians and the public prefer simple narratives. So while a recession remains for now more risk than reality, the fight over the narrative is well under way.

Powell Likely to Use Jackson Hole to Suggest Fed Ready to Cut

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell will have no lack of material to choose from when he kicks off the central bank’s annual Jackson Hole symposium Friday with a speech on the challenges for monetary policy.

Hong Kong’s richest man Li Ka-shing weighs in on protests

Li Ka-shing, Hong Kong’s richest man, on Friday weighed in on the city’s anti-government protests after months of silence with front-page newspaper advertisements calling for an end to violence.

The 91-year-old property-to-infrastructure magnate — whose Midas touch has won him a reputation among Hong Kong investors as the city’s answer to Warren Buffett and Bill Gates combined — issued two different advertisements calling on his fellow citizens to love the territory and China.

Stocks tank as another recession warning surfaces

U.S. stocks tumbled at open Wednesday after the inverted yield curve, one of the most reliable indicators of a recession, sparked a new wave of investor fears, erasing the short-lived bump from Tuesday’s trade easing.

Over 150 Flights Canceled as Hong Kong Airport Is Flooded by Protesters

HONG KONG — Hong Kong’s airport came to a near halt on Monday, with more than 150 flights canceled after thousands of demonstrators flooded one of the world’s busiest transportation hubs in a show of anger over the police’s response to protests the night before.

The airport said in an afternoon statement that all flights had been canceled for the rest of the day other than those already en route to Hong Kong. Almost 150 departures and more than two dozen arrivals were affected, according to the airport’s website.

U.K. Economy Shrinks for First Time Since 2012 as Brexit Worries Take a Toll

LONDON—The British economy unexpectedly contracted in the second quarter as uncertainty over the country’s planned departure from the European Union on Oct. 31 took its toll on business confidence.

World Economy Edges Closer to Recession as Trade Woes Spread

The escalating trade war between the U.S. and China is nudging the world economy toward its first recession in a decade with investors demanding politicians and central bankers act fast to change course.


© AP

US Treasury officially labels China a currency manipulator

The Trump administration has officially labelled China a “currency manipulator” after the Chinese central bank allowed the renminbi to fall below a key threshold, marking a dramatic escalation in the trade war between the two economic powers.

The US Treasury announced its decision after financial markets closed on Monday. It came just hours after President Donald Trump again accused China of weakening its currency to create an unfair trade advantage.