News Briefing - Monday, November 6th 2023
From US Top News and Analysis
Stock futures are little changed after the S&P 500's best week of 2023: Live updates
U.S. equity futures were flat on Monday following a strong performance during the previous week. Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose slightly, while S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq 100 futures also saw minimal gains. Last week, all three major averages had their best week of the year so far, with the Dow up 5.07%, the S&P 500 up 5.85%, and the Nasdaq Composite up 6.61%. Several factors contributed to the market's positive performance, including oversold conditions, strong earnings, hopes for an end to the Federal Reserve's rate-hiking campaign, and a pullback in interest rates. A soft jobs report and seasonal tailwinds in November have also given a boost to the market. As earnings season winds down, investors are awaiting updates from companies like Walt Disney, Wynn, MGM Resorts, Occidental Petroleum, and D.R. Horton. Additionally, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell is scheduled to speak twice this week, and investors are hoping for further clarity on the central bank's rate policies.
Telecom and internet services are down in Gaza again; Netanyahu says no ceasefire until hostages released: Live updates
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has suggested that the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas plays into Russia's hands by diverting attention away from Ukraine. Zelenskyy claimed that Russia is happy with the war as it wants to divide the world's focus and shift attention away from its own siege of Ukraine. He also warned that Russia's stance on the Israel-Hamas conflict could be an indication of how the conflict may spread to other parts of the Middle East. Zelenskyy expressed concerns that Russia could take advantage of the instability in the region and make it a target of invasion, much like it did with Ukraine. The conflict also raises concerns for Ukraine's financial support from the US, as American lawmakers are divided on whether to continue funding Ukraine while it has another ally at war. Zelenskyy stressed the importance of US support in the coming year and warned against reducing Ukrainian resources, stating that this would serve Russia's goal of destabilizing Europe.
South Korea stocks surge more than 5% for best session since March 2020 after short-selling ban
South Korean stocks experienced a significant surge following the announcement that financial authorities will be re-imposing a ban on short-selling until June 2024. Short-selling involves selling borrowed shares to repurchase at a lower price and make a profit. The ban applies to all listed stocks on the Kospi, Kosdaq, and Konex. While restrictions were lifted in May 2021 for trades involving large-cap companies, this move seeks to address the perceived imbalance between organizations and individual investors. The Kospi rose by 3.93%, while the Kosdaq saw an even larger increase of 5.88%. The ban comes after the South Korean stock market watchdog disclosed that two Hong Kong-based investment banks had engaged in naked short-selling, which involves shorting a security without borrowing it first. It is expected that these findings will result in record fines.
From BBC News - Home
Few reasons for optimism after Antony Blinken's diplomatic dash
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has been travelling in the Middle East in an effort to contain the escalating violence between Israel and Palestine. However, while President Joe Biden has expressed optimism about progress being made towards securing humanitarian pauses, Blinken's trip has experienced significant challenges and there are few reasons for optimism. Blinken attempted to encourage Israeli leaders to implement temporary ceases in hostilities, but this was swiftly rejected by the Israeli Prime Minister. He also met with Israel's Arab neighbours, who all called for an immediate ceasefire. Blinken's attempts to find a middle ground where none currently exists have been made more difficult by the domestic pressures facing both Israeli and Arab leaders. Protests in support of Palestinians have taken place worldwide, adding to the tensions on the ground. While Blinken's trip has so far prevented the conflict from spreading, the long-term prospects for peace in the region remain uncertain.
Fast fashion: Boohoo breaks promises on ethical overhaul
Fast fashion giant Boohoo has broken its promises to make improvements to its ethical practices, according to a BBC Panorama investigation. The undercover reporter at Boohoo’s Manchester headquarters witnessed staff pressurising suppliers to reduce prices, even after deals had been agreed. The misconduct contradicts the company's 2020 pledges to improve its practices. Boohoo, which is market leader in providing customers with the latest styles quickly and cheaply, pledged to make changes to its supply chain after allegations of low wages and dangerous working conditions at its Leicester-based factory arose. A senior barrister review found the allegations were “substantially true." As part of its “Agenda for Change” programme, Boohoo promised to pay suppliers a fair price for garments with realistic timescales. The BBC investigation found that supplier promises were constantly undermined in the company.
Police petrol-bombed in Edinburgh Bonfire Night disorder
Riot police clashed with around 50 young people in Edinburgh on Bonfire Night, as fireworks and petrol bombs were thrown directly at officers. Footage from the Niddrie area showed police in riot gear standing in a line while youths threw explosives at their feet. Police Scotland reacted to disturbances in Glasgow and Dundee as well, leading to eight officers suffering minor injuries. Meanwhile, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service said nine crews were attacked during an eight-hour period across the country, bringing the total number of attacks on crews over the last week to 15. No firefighters were injured but an appliance in West Lothian had a windscreen smashed by a brick and had to be removed from service.
From - RSS Channel - App International Edition
Trump pleads not guilty to 34 felony counts
Former President Donald Trump's arraignment on Tuesday will not be broadcast by news outlets, according to a judge's ruling on Monday. While the arraignment will be a public proceeding, the judge has denied permission for media organizations, including CNN, to broadcast the event. However, the judge will allow five pool photographers to take still photos in the courtroom before the proceedings formally begin. Trump's lawyers had earlier urged the judge to reject the media's request for live cameras in the courtroom, while the Manhattan District Attorney’s office stated they did not have a position on the matter. Media outlets argued that the seriousness of the charges against Trump warranted broad public access. Trump is in Manhattan ahead of the arraignment, which follows a grand jury indictment last week. The charges, relating to hush-money payments made during the 2016 presidential campaign, have yet to be seen by Trump's lawyers or the public. Trump has denied any wrongdoing and his legal team has vowed to fight the charges.
Haberman reveals why Trump attacked judge and his family in speech
In a recent speech at his Mar-a-Lago resort, former President Donald Trump launched scathing attacks on a judge and his family after being arraigned on felony charges. Maggie Haberman, a political contributor for CNN, delved into the motivations behind Trump's actions. Haberman suggests that Trump's attacks on the judge and his family were a concerted effort to deflect attention away from his legal troubles. By focusing on the judge and questioning his impartiality, Trump aimed to create doubt about the legitimacy of the charges against him. Haberman also notes that attacking judges is a tactic that Trump has used both during his presidency and throughout his business career. Trump's strategy involves riling up his supporters by portraying himself as a victim of a biased judicial system. This not only helps to mobilize his base but also serves as a way for Trump to maintain control over the narrative surrounding his legal troubles. Furthermore, Haberman highlights Trump's tendency to target individuals personally rather than criticizing their professional actions. By doing so, Trump seeks to undermine their credibility and portray them as part of a supposed conspiracy against him. In summary, Trump's attacks on the judge and his family were a deliberate attempt to shift the focus away from his own legal issues and cast doubt on the fairness of the charges against him. This tactic is consistent with Trump's past behavior, where he has frequently targeted individuals personally in order to delegitimize their professional actions.
Russian authorities detain suspect over St. Petersburg cafe blast
Ukraine has received the first tranche of $2.7 billion from a new International Monetary Fund (IMF) program, as part of a $15.6 billion four-year extended arrangement. The IMF aims to provide a total support package of $115 billion for Ukraine. The program is designed to maintain stability and support economic recovery, while promoting long-term growth and strengthening institutions. It will also assist in carrying out structural reforms in Ukraine. This loan is significant as it is the first major conventional financing program approved by the IMF for a country involved in a large-scale war. However, there are risks associated with the arrangement, as external financing on concessional terms will be crucial in closing fiscal and external financing gaps and ensuring debt sustainability. The success of the program is dependent on the size, composition, and timing of this financing.