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U.S. sanctions on Venezuela would reroute crude, leave refiners short

( ) – Potential U.S. sanctions on Venezuela’s crude oil exports would cut off the nation from Gulf Coast refiners that are among its biggest customers, likely forcing it to send more crude to China, India or other Asian countries, traders said on Wednesday.

U.S. refineries that depend on Venezuela’s heavy crude would have even more trouble securing supplies as Canadian and Mexican crudes are often not as discounted and are limited in availability.

The United States is considering moves to cripple Venezuela’s oil shipments, which account for nearly all of the country’s exports, in response to the reelection of President Nicolas Maduro that was widely viewed as a sham.

Washington has recogni,上海夜网官方网站Ebba,zed opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s president as protests against Maduro erupted across the country. It is also considering sanctio,夜上海419龙凤论坛Kaiden,ns on oil deliveries, a move it has until now resisted, energy company source上海夜网s told on Wednesday.

Venezuela, on average, exported about 500,000 barrels of crude a day to the United States in 2018, according to U.S. Energy Department data. Those shipments fell in November to an estimated 358,000 barrels per day, however, according to a report by Caracas-based consultancy Gas Energy Latin America seen by .

The U.S. share of its exports has declined in recent years with more shipments going to Russia and China. [GRAPHIC: Venezuelan crude exports to the United States: tmsnrt.rs/2S4YIXB]

Those deliveries are being made largely through oil-for-debt repayment structures as output from state-run oil company Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A., known as PDVSA, has slumped to near 70-year lows in a nationwide economic crisis. Venezuela’s output has been cut in half since 2016 to less than 1.2 million bpd, according to figures from OPEC secondary sources.

Shipments to the United States account for about 75 percent of the cash Venezuela gets for crude shipments, according to a Barclays research note published last week.

In the wake of sanctions, the country could seek additional deals with Turkey, India or other Asian nations, one trader of Venezuelan crude said. Gas Energy’s report said India was the second-largest importer of Venezuelan crude in November.

“It will be costly for Venezuela but eventually they’ll be able to sell that oil to Asia at a discount. There will be a period in the middle in which they have difficulty selling those barrels,” said Francisco Monaldi, fellow in Latin American Energy Policy at the Baker Institute for Public Policy at Rice University in Houston.

[GRAPHIC: Top U.S. importers of Venezuelan crude: tmsnrt.rs/2RYGk2E]

Though the United States produces nearly 12 million barrels of oil a day, complex Gulf Coast refineries need heavier crude grades to produce diesel and other high-margin products, and cannot simply sub in light crude.

Prices of heavier U.S. grades like Mars Sour, an offshore medium U.S. crude, and Heavy Louisiana Sweet crude have risen as buyers scramble for supply. Mars traded at a $6.90 premium to ,上海会所夜网Mabel,U.S. crude on Wednesday, a five-year high, according to Refinitiv Eikon data, as bidders came into the market to secure supplies through the second quarter, traders said.

“It would make a tight market even tighter. If it happens, it would be an unambiguous headwind for refiners already struggling to find supplies,” said Bob McNally, president of Rapidan Energy Group, an energy consultancy in Bethesda, Maryland.

[GRAPHIC: Venezuelan crude exports to U.S. refiners: tmsnrt.rs/2S42EI5.]

Traders said the United States may need to sell oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve to cover supply shortfalls as additional shipments are secured via Canada or Mexico.

Sanctions could also include U.S. exports of petroleum products to Venezuela, used for blending with Venezuelan heavy crude.

Stocks surge on Fed pledge to pause, dollar slips

NEW YORK ( ) – The dollar slid and equities surged on Wednesday, fueled by Boeing and Apple’s results and extended after the Federal Reserve pledged to be patient with future interest rate hikes, a change in tone that stock investors interpreted as a buy signal.

The Fed, in its policy statement at the end of a two-day meeting, struck the language from its December policy statement that ind,上海夜生活服务Hadley,icated further rate hikes would be appropriate in 2019. That language had roiled markets amid signs of slower global growth.

U.S. stocks extended gains and bond yields fell as markets got what they were hoping for, said Mohamed El-Erian, chief economic adviser at Allianz in Newport Beach, California. “This marks a full 180 from what the Fed was signaling just a few months ago,” he said.

Scott Minerd, global chief investment officer at Guggenheim Partners in Santa Monica, California, said the Fed’s pause will further extend the economic expansion, allowing excesses to continue to build and increasing risks of financial instability.

“The Fed refilled the punch bowl and the party goes on. Buy risk assets,” Minerd said.

The Fed’s policy statement indicates the U.S. central bank will remain on a dovish path, which is very supportive for risk assets, at least on the short term, said Putri Pascualy, managing director for PAAMCO in Irvine, California.

“The back-drop of slowing economic growth on a global basis is the 800 trillion gorilla in the room,” Pascualy said.

The MSCI world equity index, which tracks share performance in 47 countries, rose 1.2 percent following gains in Asia overnight. The FTSEurofirst 300 index of leading shares in Europe closed up 0.41 percent.

The Dow Jones Industrial Ave上海夜生活rage rose 434.9 points, or 1.77 percent, to 25,014.86. The S&P 500 gained 41.05 points, or 1.55 percent, to 2,681.05, and the Nasdaq Composite added 154.79 points, or 2.2 percent, to 7,183.08.

Upbeat results from Boeing and Apple late on Tuesday provided investors early relief.

Boeing shares rose 6.25 percent after the world’s largest planemaker raised its profit and cash flow expectations for 2019 amid a boom in air tr,上海夜生活男人好去处Dalton,avel. Boeing also indicated it had overcome supplier delays that snarled 737 production last year.

Apple results provided some reassurance as the iPhone maker reported sharp growth in its services business. Its shares gained 6.83 percent

Oil prices rose, paring gains of more than 1 percent, as the potential for supply disruptions following U.S. sanctions on Venezuela’,上海夜网推油Idaline,s oil industry lifted prices.

Stocks listed in London jumped more than 1 percent after British lawmakers late on Tuesday rejected a proposal in Parliament that aimed to prevent a potentially chaotic “no-deal” Brexit, a vote that initially pushed sterling sharply lower.

The exporter-heavy FTSE 100 in London rose 1.45 percent as its components often are boosted by a weaker pound because its multinational companies earn a large portion of their revenue abroad in foreign currency.

Sterling rose 0.04 percent to $1.3071 after sliding about 0.7 percent against the dollar and the euro following parliamentary votes on Brexit.

“The vote is not fundamentally changing the way the market’s talking about Brexit,” said Hetal Mehta, Legal & General Investment Management senior European economist.

Payrolls processor ADP reported that the U.S. private sector added 213,000 jobs in January, which beat forecasts for gains of 178,000. But the monthly total was lower than the 271,000 jobs added in December.

The dollar index fell 0.39 percent to 95.447. Against the yen, the dollar fell 0.33 percent to 109.02.

The euro gained 0.39 percent to $1.1475.

Benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury notes rose 6/32 in price to push yields down to 2.6900 percent.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures gained 92 cents to settle at $54.23, while international Brent crude futures rose 33 cents to settle at $61.65 per barrel.

NY AG, governor probing Apple’s response to FaceTime bug

( ) – New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and new Attorney General Letitia James on Wednesday said the state was probing Apple Inc’s failure to warn consumers about a FaceTime bug that lets iPhones users see and hear others before they accept a video call.

The bug, which has been able to replicate, allows an iPhone user placing a call using Apple’s FaceTime video-calling feature to hear audio from the recipient’s phone even if the call has not gone through.

“We need a full accounting of the facts to confirm businesses are abiding by New York consumer protection laws and to help make sure this type of privacy breach does not happen again,” Cuomo said in a statement.

The statement said Cuomo and James would probe Apple’s slow response and cited media reports that a consumer had made the company aware of the bug more than a week before it took action to disable th,上海夜网邀请码Jacklyn,e FaceTime feature.

Apple said on Monday it was aware of the problem and had come up with a fix that would be released in a software update later this week. The company was not immediately available for comment on Wednesday.

The bug appears to rely on Apple’s group video-calling fea,上海夜网千花Landon,ture, which Apple launched in October. In certain situations, F,上海会所夜网Idaleen,aceTime also broadcast both video and audio from the recipient’s phone, technology news website the Verge reported on Monda上海夜生活论坛y.

Cuomo on Monday issued a consumer alert about the bug and encouraged users to disable the app.

Consumer giants spurn risks to chase online subscribers

LONDON ( ) – Major consumer companies including Unilever (ULVR.L), Procter & Gamble (PG.N) and Nestle (NESN.S) are chasing consumers who want food and household goods delivered automatically, even though this kind of business has not always worked.

The companies are pitching new online subscription services, which promise stable revenues, lower delivery costs and valuable data about customers.

The world’s biggest packaged food company, Nestle, whose Nespresso coffee is already a sizeable subscription business, recently launched a subscription program for nutritional drinks in Japan and expanded ReadyRefresh, an online bottled water service, in the United States.

It also wants to expand the Tails.com subscription pet food from Britain to continental Europe, one of its executives told . It is testing the service in France for a possible launch this year.

Unilever on Monday will launch its Skinsei brand in the United States after testing, offering “personalized” skincare by subscription. Unilever expanded its Dollar Shave Club subscription razor service to include cologne and beard oil in 2018 and toothpaste in 2017.

Meanwhile, Procter & Gamble (PG.N), the world’s largest home and personal care company, expanded its Gillette on Demand razor subscription service to Canada. Subscribers can text when they are ready for their next shipment.

Selling directly lets manufacturers skirt retailers, giving them more profit and control over pricing, promotions and merchandising. This helps when retailers such as Amazon (AMZN.O) and Sainsbury’s (SBRY.L) are pressing consumer product companies for discounts and pouring resources into own-label products.

Subscription selling gives them guaranteed revenues, a better picture of customers and can make goods cheaper to deliver.

“They’re getting it to you on a specific date, but they don’t have to get it to you in one or two days,” said retail analyst Scott Mushkin at Wolfe Research. “It’s a way for them to manage down their logistics and distribution costs.” Amazon has offered discounts since 2006 with its Subscribe and Save program, which gives people up to 15 percent off when they sign up for repeat deliveries of household items.

It is now “a multi-billion dollar business inside Amazon”, said Tom Furphy, CEO of venture capital firm Consumer Equity Partners and former vice president of Amazon’s consumables unit, which launched the service.

WANING INTEREST

Liz Cadman, founder of mysubscriptionaddiction.com, said children’s educational boxes were the U.S. website’s hottest category in 2018, followed by grooming, make-up and beauty. Biggest losers were snacks, clothing and pet goods, she said.

The trouble with subscriptions, analysts say, is high cancellation rates as consumers get bored, high marketing costs, costly delivery and the fact that people often end up with goods they don’t want.

Mondelez International (MDLZ.O) has suspended its Oreo Cookie Club, a program rolled out last year. For $20 per month, subscribers got a box containing Oreos in different flavors, with recipe cards, candy and merchandise such as Oreo-branded socks, sunglasses or cups.

After three months, Ruby Scarbrough canceled her subscription, saying in an online review that she could buy the cookies more cheaply at a store.

Jeff Jarrett, global head of e-commerce at Mondelez, pointed to the challenges of delivering mass-market snacks economically and keeping customers interested.

Nobody has “cracked the code” for snack subscriptions, he said, though Mondelez may give its Oreo club another shot, likely with more flavors, better merchandise or a better online experience.

General Mills (GIS.N) axed its Nibblr subscription snack business in 2015 after 18 months. A similar project from Kellogg (K.N), reportedly planned for that year, never materialized. Walmart shut its Goodies subscription snack business in 2013 after a year.

While subscriptions delight some consumers, they frustrate others because “you end up with too much of the product or too little”, Procter & Gamble CFO Jon Moeller told .

GROWING, BUT HOW MUCH?

Subscriptions represent about 10 percent of all U.S. online sales, and more than 1 percent of all retail sales, said Burt Flickinger, managing director of consum,上海夜生活怎么玩Idaleen,er consulting firm Strategic Resources Group.

He said subscriptions are the hottest part of the industry, growing more than 17 percent a year and outpacing overall online sales, which are growing more ,夜上海419龙凤论坛Barrett,than 12 percent. He said subscriptions may exceed 10 percent of the US,上海夜生活乌托邦Oakley, retail market in five years and 15 percent in 10 years.

Euromonitor International says subscription shaving clubs, including Dollar Shave and Harry’s, took about 12 percent of the $2.1 billion U.S. market for men’s razors and blades in 2017, up from 6.4 percent two years earlier. But Dollar Shave’s sales have slowed dramatically, with Unilever in October citing growth of around 10 percent year-to-date, compared to more than 50 percent in 2016, the year it bought the brand.

Unilever said a slowdown was not unusual but it was “pleased with performance” at Dollar Shave, whose N上海夜网orth American business would be close to breakeven this year.

Unilever’s global brand vice president of skincare, Valentina Ciobanu, told the company wants to make its subscriptions more flexible, because consumers demand options when they buy.

“We don’t force you to subscribe at the beginning,” Ciobanu said about the Skinsei brand, which she created inside the company. Skinsei aimed to keep shoppers loyal in part by making changes to the products it recommends based on the season of the year and other factors, she said.

Ciobanu said Skinsei’s products could be combined into more than one million skincare regimens. She declined to give sales projections.

However, she and other executives said it was unclear whether subscription brands would take off or remain niche.

“For now it’s still early adopters. The question mark is how long will it take to become more mass, and I think nobody has the answer to that question,” said Bernard Meunier, who runs Nestle’s Purina Petcare business in Europe, Middle East and North Africa.

Barclays weighs 280 redundancies, relocations at Leeds call center

LONDON ( ) – British bank Barclays (BARC.L) has warned nearly 300 staff they could face redundancy or relocation from its Millshaw Court call center in Leeds, northern England, following unspecified “changes to its business”.

The FTSE 100 .FTSE lender said it had informed 280 staff at the office that their roles were at risk, with around 115 of the roles possibly relocating to Manchester or Liverpool in northwestern England, and the ,上海夜生活Cain,northeastern English city of Sunderland.

Barclays declined to give further reasons for the possible layoffs but British banks have broadly been pursuing deep cost-cutting initiatives in recent years in the face of intensifying competition,夜上海论坛Lark, in UK lending and tighter profit margins.

It said the landlord of Mi上海夜网llshaw Court had also put the site up for sale with planning permission to be converted into flats.

The bank said it would keep the center’s remaining 800-strong workforce informed on a search for an alternative office and said it had secured a t,上海夜生活网交流Sabine,hree year extension to the lease until November 2021.

Separately, employee union Unite said it would oppose the redundancies, calling them “deeply irresponsible” and said it would “significantly damage both the business and the customer experience”.

Written by shyw on July 25, 2019 Categories: wjxqxjow Tags: , , ,

Harvard, Levi Strauss, U.S. think tank in blockchain tie-up on…

NEW YORK ( ) – Harvard University’s public health graduate school, U.S. think-tank New America, and American apparel company Levi Strauss & Co announced on Thursday a collaboration to develop a blockhain-based system designed to augment outside auditors of factory health and safety with self-reporting by workers.

Three factories in Mexico producing goods for Levi Strauss and employing 5,000 workers will be the first to use the blockchain-powered survey in 2019.

Blockchain, which first emerged as the上海夜生活 system powering bitcoin, is a shared database maintained by a network of c,上海夜生活群Larissa,omputers connected to the internet.

New York-based Consensys will provide the project’s blockchain solution.

Essentially, the plan is to put an annual worker survey on the blockchain in what the participants called a crucial first st,上海夜生活Sabine,ep in transparent evaluation of working conditions in factories.

The project is funded through a grant from the U.S. State Department.

“Providing a secure, standardized, auditable, and transparent platform through which worker survey data can be aggregated and analyzed will be possible with this solution,” said Tomicah Tillemann, founder of the Blockchain Trust Accelerator (BTA) at New America in a statement.

The blockchain-based survey will use an index developed by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Harvar,上海夜生活乌托邦Caden,d University’s public health graduate school.

“What this means is that the results will never be manipulated,” Allison Price, BTA executive director, told in an interview.

“For the last 25 years, work in supply chains has been monitored mainly by audits,” said Dr. Eileen McNeely, director of Harvard T.H. Chan’s Sustainability and Health Initiative for NetPositive Enterprise.

McNeely said this system alone is not effective. 

“A distributed system of inquiry on the blockchain that goes right to the source (workers) offers a new solution,” she added.

The project’s first pilot will be tested in factories in Mexico in the second quarter of 2019, with another pilot slated in 2020.

(This story corrects first paragraph to read “augment” instead of “replace”.)

Written by shyw on July 23, 2019 Categories: zqyfuqia Tags: , ,

‘Drain the Swamp’ Trump suggests reviving ‘earmarks’ in Congress

WASHINGTON ( ) – President Donald Trump unexpectedly suggested on Tuesday that bringing back congressional “earmarks,” spending habits that were banished six years ago from the federal budget process, might help an often deadlocked U.S. Congress get things done.

Known by their supporters as the “grease” that made Washington’s wheels turn, earmarks were funds allocated for lawmakers’ pet projects that helped secure votes needed to get broader legislation passed.

“Maybe all of you should start thinking about going back to a form of earmarks,” Trump told lawmakers who were gathered at the White House for a meeting about immigration reform.

His surprise suggestion prompted Senator Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican, to exclaim, “Yeah!,” while drawing objections and laughter from others in the room.

Congress resisted using earmarks routinely for decades, but they became commonplace in the 1990s and helped define Washington’s image as a “swamp” of special interests. As a 2016 presidential candidate, Trump made “Drain the Swamp” a campaign theme and popular slogan at his political rallies.

In the meeting on Tuesday, Trump lamented the animosity between Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill.

“This system really lends itself to not getting along. It lends itself to hostility and anger,” Trump said of the difficulties of passing legislation since the practice of allowing earmarks was abandoned.

Memorable examples of the use of earmarks were a “bridge to nowhere” in Alaska and the conviction of Republican Congressman Duke Cunningham of California for taking millions of dollars in bribes linked to special projects.

Since the practice was banished in 2011, Congress has struggled to carry out its basic job of writing and approving annual budgets.

“I hear so much about earmarks, the old earmark system, how there was a great friendliness when you had earmarks,” Trump said. “We have to put better controls because it got a little bit out of hand, but maybe that brings people together. Because our system right now, the way it’s set up, will never bring people together.”

Some members of Congress have also called for reviving earmarks, but Republican Representative Mark Walker from North Carolina, who chairs a large conservative faction of the House of Representatives, drew a firm line.

“I can tell you unequivocally most of us are going to have an issue with it,” he said. “I’m in favor of not bringing them back because of the temptation to abuse that process.”

Trump and congressional Republicans f上海夜生活网inished 2017 with a victory by passing a landmark tax overhaul bill against the united opposition of Democrats.

While Republicans have majorities in both houses of Congress, they will likely need Democrats’ votes to advance other goals this year given their narrow Senate majority.

The president has be,上海夜网Lake,gun 2018 by seeking bipartisan support for immigration measures and some Democrats attended Tuesday’s meeting.

After the November 2018 congressiona,上海夜生活去哪玩Gabi,l elections though, if Republicans lose seats in Congress as histo,上海夜网邀请码Fabian,rically happens midway through the first term of a new president, Trump will need Democrats even more to follow through on his policy agenda.

Senate votes to pursue tax bill negotiations with House

WASHINGTON ( ) – U.S. Senate Republicans agreed to talks with the House of Representatives on sweeping tax legislation on Wednesday, amid early signs that lawmakers could bridge their differences and agree on a final bill ahead of a self-imposed Dec. 22 deadline.

The Republican-led Senate voted 51-47, along party lines with Democrats opposed, to begin formal conference negotiations to reconcile rival House and Senate tax bills passed last week.

The move, which follows similar House action this week, brings Congress a step closer to sending President Donald Trump a tax overhaul that he can sign into law.

House and Senate negotiators will need to work out differences on issues ranging from business taxes to the repeal of the Obamacare mandate that Americans obtain health insurance or face a penalty before lawmakers can pass a final version.

上海夜生活论坛But John Cornyn, the No. 2 Senate Republican, said he was optimistic House and Senate tax negotiators would be able to work out an agreement within the next two weeks.

“Given the similarities between the House and the Senate bills, I think there are some obvious targets where they need to focus their attention but obviously they won’t be rewriting the bills,” Cornyn said.

Republican negotiators must be careful not to agree to changes that could diminish support in the Senate, where they can afford to lose support from no more than two party members.

There has been no major tax overhaul since 1986, when Republican Ronald Reagan was president.

While there are significant differences between the House and Senate bills, both would cut the U.S. corporate tax rate to 20 percent f,上海高端夜生活在那里Radley,rom 35 percent, provide tax relief for “pass-through” enterprises including small businesses where earnings are taxed at individual rates, and both benefit the wealthiest Americans and reduce the tax burden for most middle-class taxpayers.

Republicans claim the legislation will spur enough economic growth to pay for the tax cuts with new revenue, but the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation estimates that Senate bill would still add $1 trillion to the federal budget deficit over a decade, even with an economic upswing.

U.S. stock prices have rallied on growing optimism that tax legislation will become law.

Related CoverageFactbox: Corporate alternative minimum tax threat hits pharma, techCorporate AMT likely will not be in final U.S. tax bill: HatchDEFICIT WARNING

But on Wednesday, the head of sove,上海夜生活群Earl,reign credit ratings at S&P Global told that the rising deficit and looser fiscal policy could prompt negative action on U.S. credit ratings unless Washington addressed long-term budgetary issues.

“If U.S. tax reform is approved, it seems certain to increase the federal budget deficit,” Moritz Kraemer, S&P’s sovereign global chief rating officer, said in an interview.

“A meaningful relaxation of fiscal policy without countervailing measures to address the longer-term fiscal challenges of the U.S. could lead to a n,上海夜生活男人好去处Caitlin,egative rating action.”

Senate Republicans later voted down a Democratic motion instructing tax negotiators to produce a deficit-neutral bill.

Passage of the tax bill would provide a badly needed legislative victory for Trump and Republicans after their failure earlier this year to enact legislation repealing President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law.

Trump and his Republican allies see enacting the tax overhaul that they promised voters as crucial to their strategy for the 2018 U.S. congressional elections, when all 435 seats in the House of Representatives and 33 seats in the 100-member Senate will be up for election.

Democrats have been united against the bill, calling it a handout to corporations and the rich that would drive up the federal deficit.

In an early sign of progress on reconciling the House and Senate versions, Senator Orrin Hatch, chairman of the tax-writing Finance Committee, said he did not think that the final bill would retain a corporate alternative minimum tax (AMT).

The House bill calls for a repeal of the corporate AMT, which is designed to limit the ability of corporations to reduce their payments through tax breaks and credits. Corporate AMT repeal is not part of the Senate version.

Getting rid of the corporate AMT would be popular with many businesses and would also be a concession toward the House bill.

But repeal would also require lawmakers to replace the $40 billion in revenues that retaining the corporate AMT would raise over a decade. Increasing the corporate income tax target from 20 percent is seen as one way to pay for the AMT repeal and other potential changes.

“I’ll keep it at 20 if I can, but there’s a drive to get it to 22. They want more money, that’s why,” Hatch told reporters.

Oil edges up as investors latch on to OPEC cuts, supply outlook

LONDON ( ) – Oil prices edged up on Monday, reversing earlier losses, as investors shrugged off data that confirmed China’s economic growth is cooling and instead latched on to positive supply-side drivers for the market.

Brent crude oil futures LCOc1 were up 12 cents at $62.83 a barrel by 3:23 p.m. EST (1727 GMT) versus Friday’s settlement price, while U.S. crude futures CLc1 were up 19 cents to $53.99 a barrel.

The U.S. financial markets are closed on Monday for the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday.

Global equities fell after data pointed to a slowdown in Chinese economic growth in 2018 to a 28-year low. The numbers fed concern that the outlook for global growth may be darkening, particularly given U.S.-China trade tensions.

“It remains quite likely that the trade spat with the U.S. has played a part in this latest slowdown,” CMC Markets chief market anal,上海夜生活网419Quaid,yst Michael Hewson said. “But investors should also factor in that it simply isn’t possible for the Chinese economy to grow at the pace that it has over the last 10 years, in the next 10 years.”

Stock markets are still up so far this month, which has given oil investors more confidence to b上海夜生活论坛et aggressively on a rise in crude prices.

Analysts said a more robust backdrop for financial markets and the prospect of slower crude production growth were the major drivers behind the rally in oil.

“The stock market perfo,上海夜网千花Hadrian,rmance is one of the reasons why oil keeps marching higher. There also seems to be a general belief that the agreed cut in OPEC+ produ,上海夜生活桑拿会所Dakota,ction will be sufficient to balance the market,” PVM Oil Associates said in a note.

While there is concern that a slowing global economy could impact oil demand, production cuts implemented by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries are likely to support crude oil prices, analysts said.

“You can’t justify oil prices at these levels. We’re looking basically at an average of almost $70 a barrel for Brent in 2019,” ING commodities strategist Warren Patterson said. “I am getting increasingly concerned about how tight the market will be going into 2020.”

A separate report from China’s National Bureau of Statistics showed crude oil refinery throughput in 2018 climbed to a record 12.1 million barrels per day, up 6.8 percent from the previous year.

In the United States, energy companies cut the number of rigs drilling for oil by 21 last week, the biggest decline in three years, taking the count down to 852, the lowest since May 2018, energy services firm Baker Hughes said on Friday.

U.S. sanctions Venezuela state oil firm, escalating pressure on Maduro

WASHINGTON/CARACAS ( ) – The Trump administration on Monday imposed sweeping sanctions on Venezuelan state-owned oil firm PDVSA, aimed at severely curbing the OPEC member’s crude exports to the United States and at pressuring socialist President Nicolas Maduro to step down.

Russia, a close ally of Venezuela, denounced the move as illegal interference in Venezuela’s affairs and said the curbs meant Venezuela would probably have problems servicing its $3.15 billion sovereign debt to Moscow.

Minutes before the sanctions announcement, Juan Guaido, the opposition leader who proclaimed himself interim president last week with U.S. backing, said congress would name new 上海夜生活论坛boards of directors to the company and its U.S. subsidiary, Citgo.

Guaido, supported by the United States and most countries in the Western Hemisphere, says Maduro stole his re-election and must resign to allow new, fair polls.

Maduro, in a live national broadcast on Monday, accused the United States of trying to steal U.S. refining arm Citgo Petroleum, the OPEC member’s most important foreign asset, which also manages a chain of U.S. gas stations. He said Venezuela would take legal actions in response.

In the first sign of serious retaliation, three sources with knowledge of the decision said PDVSA had ordered customers with tankers waiting to load Venezuelan crude bound for the United States to prepay for the cargoes or they will be authorized to fill the vessels or leave the ports.

The Trump administration sanctions stopped short of banning U.S. companies from buying Venezuelan oil, but because the proceeds of such sales will be put in a “blocked account,” PDVSA is likely to quickly stop shipping much crude to the United States, its top client.

“If the people in Venezuela want to continue to sell us oil, as long as the money goes into blocked accounts we will continue to take it, otherwise will we not be buying it,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said at a White House briefing.

Related CoverageInvestors say banks have halted PDVSA trading after U.S. sanctions

Oil at sea, already paid for, would continue its journey to the U,上海夜生活怎么玩Jacklyn,nited States, he said. White House national security adviser John Bolton said at the briefing the measure would cost Maduro $11 billion in lost export proceeds over the next year and block him from accessing PDVSA assets worth $7 billion.

While there are significant exceptions, such as rules that should allow Citgo to keep using Venezuelan crude in U.S. refineries, the sanctions will likely cause some reordering of global oil flows as Venezuela seeks to sell elsewhere.

Gulf refineries that use Venezuela’s heavy crude will have to look for alternatives to replace supplies. Despite a sharp decline in oil exports due largely to mismanagement of the industry and the economic crisis Venezuela remains the fourth-biggest vendor of,上海夜网千花Dakota, oil to the United States, supplying some 500,000 barrels per day.

Citgo, Valero Energy Corp and Chevron Corp are the three largest buyers of Venezuelan crude in the United States.

“They are not allowing tankers bound for Valero, Citgo and Chevron to leave Venezuelan ports if not prepaid,” a PDVSA source said referring to a decision by the company’s trade and supply division.

Other exceptions in the sanctions will make it easier for Chevron Corp to keep participating in a joint venture in Venezuela, and allow U.S. entities in Venezuela to keep buying PDVSA gasoline.

VITAL SECTOR

In Moscow, Russian Deputy Finance Minister Sergei Storchak said Venezuela could struggle to service its debt to Moscow.

“There will probably be problems. Everything now depends on the army, on the soldiers and how faithful they will be to their duty and oath. It is difficult, impossible to give a different assessment,” he said on Tuesday.

The Kremlin condemned the U.S. sanctions as illegal interference in Venezuela, while Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said they looked like an attempt to confiscate Venezuelan state assets.

The sanctions, contained in an executive order issued by U.S. President Donald Trump, freeze U.S.-based assets of PDVSA, Venezuela’s largest source of revenue.

The Trump administration had long held off on targeting Venezuela’s vital oil sector for fear that it would hurt U.S. refiners and raise oil prices for Americans. White House officials had also expressed concern about inflicting further hardship on the Venezuelan people.

The latest sanctions appear to seek to build on the momentum mounting in recent weeks against Maduro at home and abroad.

U.S. officials said the sanctions on PDVSA were intended to prevent Maduro’s government from siphoning off funds from the oil company to maintain his grip on power.

Mnuchin said oil supplies were sufficient to ensure no significant impact on U.S. gas prices in the short term.

Even though the Venezuelan military has shown no sign of abandoning Maduro, Bolton said: “Our assessment based on numerous contacts on the ground is that the rank and file of the Venezuelan military is acutely aware of the desperate economic conditions in the country and we think they look for ways to support the National Assembly government.”

Countries around the world have rec,上海夜生活乌托邦Rae,ognized Guaido, the National Assembly speaker, as Venezuela’s rightful leader, and the United States vowed to starve Maduro’s administration of oil revenue after he was sworn in on Jan. 10 for a second term that was widely dubbed illegitimate.

Maduro has promised to stay in office, backed by Russia and China, which have bank rolled his government and fought off efforts to have his government disavowed by the United Nations.

Bolton reiterated that Maduro would be held responsible for the safety of U.S. diplomatic personnel in Venezuela as well as Guaido and other opposition figures.

Trump says ‘I’m not a racist,’ keeps door open for DACA deal

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. ( ) – U.S. President Donald Trump insisted on Sunday “I’m not a racist” in response to reports that he had described immigrants from Haiti and African countries as coming from “shithole countries.”

Trump also said he was “ready, willing and able” to reach a deal to protect illegal immigrants brought to the United States as children from being deported but that he did not believe Democrats wanted an agreement. He tweeted earlier on Sunday that the existing program would “probably” be discontinued.

The debate over immigration policy became increasingly acrimonious after it was reported on Thursday that the Republican president used the word “shithole” to describe Haiti and African countries in a private meeting with lawmakers.

The comments led to harsh recriminations from Democrats and Republicans alike, with some critics accusing Trump of racism, even as bipartisan talks continued in the U.S. Congress to seek a bipartisan compromise to salvage the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA.

Asked by a reporter in Florida whether he was a racist, Trump said: “No. I’m not a racist. I’m the least racist person,上海夜生活群Idaia, you have ever interviewed.”

Trump has threatened to end DACA, but he seemed to keep the door open for a deal when he told reporters before dinner on Sunday night: “We’re ready, willing and able to make a deal on DACA, but I don’t think the Democrats want to make a deal…. The Democrats are the ones that aren’t going to make a deal.”

Efforts to extend the program are further complicated because it could make a funding bill to avert a government shutdown due Friday more difficult.

“DACA is probably dead because the Democrats don’t really want it, they just want to talk and take desperately needed money away from our military,” Trump said earlier on Twitter.

CONTROVERSY SIMMERS

A U.S. judge ruled last Tuesday that DACA should remain in ef,上海仙霞路夜生活Gabriella,fect until legal challenges brought in multiple courts are resolved.

“I hope that we are actually going to work on fixin上海夜生活网g DACA,” said Representative Mia Love on CNN’s “State of the Union” program on Sunday. “We cannot let this derail us.”

Love, whose parents are from Haiti, had criticized Trump for his remarks and called on him to apologize.

Trump denied making the disparaging remarks on Friday, although U.S. Senator Richard Durbin, who was in the White House meeting, said the president h,上海夜生活去哪玩Lance,ad used the term. One participant at the meeting on Sunday denied that Trump used the term and another said he did not recall Trump making such comments.

Asked on Sunday whether his inflammatory remarks made it harder to get a DACA deal, Trump said: “Did you see what various senators in the room say about my comments? They weren’t bad.”

Lawmakers hope to reach an immigration deal before Jan. 19, when Congress must pass a funding bill or the government will shut down. Some Democrats insist that the DACA question be addressed by then.

Lawmakers are trying to combine some form of relief for DACA immigrants along with enhanced border security, including a wall along the Mexican border, sought by Trump. The president’s inflammatory comments left lawmakers struggling to find a path forward.

“I hope we can move beyond that. What was reported was unacceptable. But what we have to do is not let that define this moment,” said Republican Senator Cory Gardner on CBS’s “Face the Nation” program.

Republican Senator David Perdue, who was at the same White House meeting and had said he did not recall whether Trump made the comment, was more explicit on Sunday. He called the new stories a “gross misrepresentation.”

“I’m telling you, he did not use that word,” he said on ABC’s “This Week” program.

However, Republicans and Democrats have both said they either heard Trump say it, or heard directly from colleagues who did.

Republican Senator Jeff Flake said on Sunday he was told about the remarks by colleagues who attended the meeting, before the news reports emerged.

“I heard that account before the account even went public,” he said on “This Week.”

One of Trump’s top advisers, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, said on “Fox News Sunday” she did not recall if Trump used “that specific phrase.”

She also appeared to rebut Trump’s remarks from earlier in the day. “DACA is not dead,” she said.

Manafort tried to pen positive op-ed on Ukraine work: special counsel

WASHINGTON ( ) – The special counsel investigating Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election on Monday accused President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, of working with a Russian colleague to draft an opinion piece about his political work for Ukraine.

In court filings, a prosecutor working with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team said Manafort was working on the article as recently as Nov. 30.

Had it been published, prosecutors say it would have violated a Nov. 8 court order not to discuss the case publicly.

The Russian colleague who was working with Manafort allegedly to shape public opinion about his work for a Ukrainian political party has ties to Russian intelligence agencies, according to the filing.

Manafort ultimately never published the opinion piece, after prosecutors reached out to his attorneys to alert them, they said in the filing.

Due to Manafort’s actions, prosecutors said the judge should reject his request to modify his bail conditions.

Manafort has proposed an $11.65 million bail package ,上海夜生活去哪玩Gabriel,in exchange for lifting him from house arrest and electronic monitoring.

,上海会所夜网Fabian,As part of that deal, he would forfeit four of his real estate properties if he violated his bail conditions.

“Even if the ghost-written op-ed were entirely accurate, fair and balanced, it would be a violation of this court’s November 8 order if it had been published,” wrote prosecutor Andrew Weissmann.

A spokesman for Manafort did not have any immediate comment.

Manafort and his business associate Rick Gates were both indicted in October in a 12-count indictment by a federal grand jury.

They face charges including conspiracy to launder money, conspiracy against the United States and failing to register as foreign agents of Ukraine’s former pro-Russian governmen上海夜生活论坛t.

Initially, Manafort’s lawyers had said in their court filing that the special counsel’s office was willing to accept the proposed terms of his release.

But prosecutors wrote that they can no longer trust Manafort, and cannot accept his proposed terms.

“Because Manafort has now taken actions that reflect an intention to violate or circumvent the court’s existing orders, at a time one would expect particularly scrupulous adherence, the government submits that the proposed bail package is insu,上海夜网官方网站Babette,fficient,” the filing said.

Trump says U.S. Secretary of State Tillerson not leaving post

WASHINGTON ( ) – U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is not leaving, President Donald Trump tweeted on Friday, after U.S. officials on Thursday said the White House had a plan for CIA Director Mike Pompeo to replace him.

“The media has 上海夜生活网been speculating that I fired,上海会所夜网Sabine, Rex Tillerson or that he would be leaving soon – FAKE NEWS! He’s not leaving and while we disagree on certain subjects, (I call the final shots) we work well together and America is highly respected again!” Trump said on Twitter.

The tweet linked to a picture of Tillerson being sworn in as secretary of state with Trump and Vice President Mike Pence looking on.

Senior administration officials on Thursday said that Trump was considering a plan to oust Tillerson, whose relationship with the president has been strained by the top U.S. diplomat’s softer line on North Korea and other policy differences, as well as by reports in October that he called the president a “moron.”

Tillerson has not directly addressed whether he made ,上海夜网千花Ida,the comment, though his spokeswoman denied it. The New York Times on Thursday first reported the White House plan to replace him.

Asked to comment on some White House officials wanting him to resign, how the matter was being handled and what his plans were, Tillerson replied: “It’s laughable. It’s laughable.”

His comments came as he posed for pictures with Libyan Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj of the United Nations-backed government in Tripoli.

Tillerson visits Europe next week to attend NATO meetings in Brussels on Tuesday and Wednesday, an Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) meeting in Vienna on Thursday and talks with French officials in Paris on Friday.

He is,上海夜生活网419Qirin, tentatively scheduled to meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Vienna on Thursday on the sidelines of the OSCE meeting, a senior State Department official told reporters.

Senior lawmaker Conyers leaves U.S. Congress after harassment…

WASHINGTON ( ) – Democrat John Conyers, the longest serving member of the U.S. House of Representatives, stepped down on Tuesday after multiple accusations of sexual misconduct, the first member of Congress to leave his seat during a wave of high-profile harassment allegations.

Conyers, a leading figure in ,上海夜生活桑拿会所Sabrina,civil rights and Democratic politics who represented the Detroit area for over half a century, endorsed his son to take his place.

“I am in the process of putting my retirement,上海夜网官方网站Hadley, plans together and will have more on that very soon … I am retiring today,” Conyers, 88, said in a radio interview from a hospital where he is being treated for stress-related illness.

“I have a great family here and especially in my oldest boy, John Conyers III, who incidentally I endorse to replace me in my seat in Congress,” Conyers said.

His resignation letter was later read in the House chamber, making his departure official. Michigan’s Republican governor, Rick Snyder, said he would review dates for a special election.

Conyers’ great-nephew has also announced he would run.

The growing number of accusations against Conyers, a founder of the Congressional Black Caucus who hired Rosa Parks as an aide after winning his first term in 1964, troubled party leaders.

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi was criticized for calling Conyers an “icon” before calling for his resignation.

But others said the issue was clear, if difficult.

“We have to recognize and be able to hold the dueling possibilities that somebody can be a great man and have done great things for our country and for civil rights, but also have done terrible things that require accountability,” said Representative Pramila Jayapal.

The House Ethics Committee opened an investigation last week.

Conyers repeated his denial of harassment allegations in the radio interview. “They are not accurate or they are not true.”

Congress has been grappling with harassment policy amid a string of cases involving prominent men, incl,上海夜生活去哪玩Cadence,uding Republican Presiden上海夜网t Donald Trump, Democratic Senator Al Franken and Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore.

Trump and Moore have denied wrongdoing. Franken apologized.

Conyers, who had risen to be chairman of the powerful House Judiciary Committee, stepped down last month as the panel’s senior Democrat.

Several former women aides have accused him of misdeeds such as inappropriate touching and showing up for a meeting in only his underwear.

But others issued a statement defending him, saying they did not see him behave inappropriately.

Kentucky lawmaker a ‘probable suicide’ amid sexual misconduct…

( ) – Kentucky state Representative Dan Johnson, who was facing sexual assault accusations, died in a probable suicide on Wednesday, Bullitt County Coroner Dave Billings said.

Johnson, 57, also the leader of the L,上海夜生活桑拿会所Sabrina,ouisville-area Heart of Fire Church, held a news conference on Tuesday at which he denied accusations contained in a report by the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting. The report, published earlier in the week, included accusations from a woman that Johnson molested her in 2013 when she was a teenager.

Johnson, whose press conference was widely reported by local media, also defied calls by some legislators to step down.

On Wednesday evening, Johnson was found,上海会所夜网Cade, dead in a probable suicide from a single gunshot wound near Louisville, the coroner said, adding that an autopsy would be performed on Thursday.

Billings said law enforcement officials had been searching for Johnson after someone read a post on his Facebook page, became concerned and contacted police.

The post has since been taken down, but the Courier-Journal reported that it appeared to be a farewell and read in part, “the accusations from NPR are false, GOD and only GOD knows the truth. Nothing is the way they make it out to be.”

The death comes amid a national reckoning over sexual harassment and abuse that has included allegations of misconduct in a number of state legislatures, including in Kentucky.

Kentucky Republican Jeff Hoover recently resigned his post as Speaker of the Kentucky House of Representatives under a cloud of sexual harassment allegations.

“,上海晚上耍女人的地方Macey,Saddened to hear of tonight’s death of KY Representative Dan Johnson,” Kentucky Republican Gov. Matt Bevin wrote on Twitter. “My heart breaks for his family tonight…these are heavy days in Frankfort and in America…may God indeed shed His grace on us all…we sure need it.”

Michael Skoler, President of Louisville Public Media, wh上海夜生活ich operates the investigative reporting center, said in a statement on social media that the organization reached out to Johnson numerous times during its seven-month investigation but that he declined to discuss the group’s findings.

Johnson was elected in 2016 despite becoming known for a 2016 Facebook post comparing President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama to monkeys, WDRB-TV has reported.

Trump’s profanity delights supporters, horrifies etiquette experts

(Note language throughout that may offend some readers)

By Scott Malone

BOSTON ( ) – From Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon through Barack Obama, Americans have gotten used to the idea of their presidents using profanity, but Donald Trump’s use of the word “shithole” to describe Haiti and Africa this week sparked a storm of protest.

The countries offended condemned the outburst and human rights groups labeled the comment racist, given that Trump described people from largely white,上海夜哪里艳遇Falkner, Norway as more desirable immigrants.

But supporters of the former businessman and reality TV star erupted in applause.

“Finally a president that says what we all think! You go @POTUS! #ShitholeCountries #shithole #America1st,” tweeted Marco Gutierrez, a Trump supporter and Congressional candidate from California.

Conservative blogger Stacy Rush dismissed criticism of Trump’s language as pitiful and a distraction from the bigger picture: “It is pathetic our country and particularly the MSM (mainstream media) is wasting time on the word #shithole when we have real issues that need to be addressed.”

But many from the worlds of diplomacy, academia and even etiquette experts cringed.

“The reality is that when you have to resort to it, it does send a message of insecurity,” said Diane Gottsman, author of Modern Etiquette for a Better Life, who advises against using profanity in either professional or social settings.

Trump’s remarks during a meeting on immigration policy that was held at the White House on Thursday were reported by a U.S. senator at the gathering, who said on Friday that the president had used “vile, vulgar” language, including repeatedly saying “shithole.”

Trump denied on Friday that he had used such derogatory language. But h,上海夜生活乌托邦Kaia,e was condemned nonetheless in many African nations, as well as in Haiti and El Salvador, and by international human rights organizations.

During the 1960s Lyndon Johnson raised eyebrows by saying that, ,上海夜生活男人好去处Eden,in politics, “chicken shit can turn to chicken salad.” Experts said the public were shocked by the profanity-laced Nixon tapes from the Ov上海夜生活al office in the 1970s Watergate political crisis, and that people are less sensitive now.

“People have become accustomed to the idea that presidents swear,” said Julian Zelizer, a Princeton University history professor who studies the presidency. “But even with that, I think people still expect a certain amount of formality in public.”

Some academic research suggests there could be benefits to swearing in some contexts, from dulling pain to suggesting trust in social situations.

Benjamin Bergin, a cognitive science professor at the University of California San Diego who wrote a book on why people swear called “What the F,” said his research has shown profane speech can be perceived as more honest.

If swearing kept Trump from storming out of the negotiations, that could be positive, said Timothy Jay, emeritus professor of psychology at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, and author of five books on profanity.

That was not enough to sway Gottsman, who advises people on business etiquette.

“My advice would be don’t do it,” she said. “When we are in a position of power, people look up to us.”

American Airlines profit and forecast beat on higher fares

( ) – No. 1 U.S. carrier American Airlines (AAL.O) posted on Thursday quarterly profit and 2019 guidance that beat Wall Street estimates thanks to higher fares and healthy passenger demand, sending its shares up nearly 6 percent.

Smaller ri,上海夜网邀请码Idaline,vals Delta Air Lines Inc (DAL.N) and Uni上海夜生活论坛ted Airlines (UAL.O) had kicked off fourth-quarter earnings earlier this month with profits that also beat analysts’ expectations.

No. 2 U.S. carrier Delta, however, warned of slower revenue growth in the current quarter due to lost government business and of difficulties in introducing new aircraft because of the U.S. government shutdown that has dragged into its 34th day.

American said revenues per mile flown, a closely watched performance metric which compares sales to flight capacity, would be flat to up 2 percent in the current quarter.

A fall in unit revenue growth to less than 2 percent in the fourth quarter had sent American’s shares spinning lower when it flagged the number earlier this month.

Still, American said it expects its revenue growth to outpace rivals. It forecast $1 billion of additional revenue in 2019 as it continues to optimize its network, expands its Premium Economy product and adds new gates at its Dallas-Fort Worth and Charlotte hubs.

The company also said it sees more than $300 million of cost savings in 2019.

Thursday’s numbers showed fuel expenses rose almost 20 percent in the quarter.

,上海夜网官方网站Nala,

The company forecas,上海夜生活去哪玩Easton,t full-year earnings per share to rise between 21 percent and 65 percent, well above the 30 percent increase expected by analysts on average, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

The No. 1 U.S. airline by passenger traffic said net income, excluding special items, rose 8.3 percent to $481 million, or $1.04 per share, in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, beating analysts’ estimate of $1.01 per share.

Total operating revenue rose 3.1 percent to $10.94 billion.

‘A List’ climate change firms outperform on stock market – survey

OSLO ( ) – Apple (AAPL.O), L’Oreal (OREP.PA) and Mitsubishi Electric (6503.T) are among more than 120 global firms which scored top marks in a ranking of corporate efforts to slow climate change.

Many companies say they are stepping up action on climate change since almost 200 governments struck the 2015 Paris climate agreement to phase out greenhouse gas emissions this century by shifting from fossil fuels.

But only two percent of 6,800 firms that submitted data made the “A List” of CDP’s index, including Johnson & Johnson(JNJ.N), Nestle (NESN.S), China Mobile [CHNMC.UL] and Microsoft (MSFT.O,上海夜生活男人好去处Hallie,).

London-based CDP, formerly the Carbon Disclosure Pr上海夜生活论坛oject, said its data showed the shares of its index leaders tend to outperform on stock markets. Companie,夜上海论坛Hadleigh,s are coming under increasing pressure from shareholders to address climate change.

CDP said the STOXX Global Climate Leaders index, based on the CDP A List, outperformed the STOXX Global 1800 of major firms by 5.4 percent a year from December 2011 to July 2018.

“We think (climate action) is a lead indicator of quality in other areas, especially sustainability and management,” Dexter Galvin, global director of corporates and supply chains at CDP, told ahead of the index publication on Tuesday.

Galvin said it was hard to compare the 2018 results with previous years due to changes in the questions posed. As,上海夜生活Ebba, a result, a company that dropped off the list was not necessarily performing worse, he added.

CDP asks companies to disclose their performance on climate change and separately surveys their efforts to limit water use and to protect forests in its study, which is backed by more than 650 investors with assets of $87 trillion and is meant to spur efforts to protect the planet.

Galvin said CDP would in future be bolder in naming and shaming in the report, which was issued to coincide with the start of the World Economic Forum in Davos.

Among examples of efforts made by its A List companies, CDP said Danish toy-maker LEGO launched the first LEGO elements made from plant-based plastic sourced from sugar cane.

And Korean electronics company LG Display had developed and invested in more than 150 water-related reduction technologies between 2013 and 2017, it added.

Take Five: World markets themes for the week ahead

( ) – Following are five big themes likely to dominate the thinking of investors and traders in the coming week and the stories related to them.

SHOULD I STAY OR SHOULD I GO?

Another week closer to the date Britain leaves the European Union. Or are we? Given how crushingly Prime Minister Theresa May’s proposed Brexit agreement was defeated by lawmakers, there is little chance her Plan B — to be presented in coming days — will get away with just minor amendments. So markets now reckon the March 29 deadline will be extended to give parliament more time to negotiate the manner of exit or even to organize a second referendum.

The optimism has driven sterling to two-month highs against the dollar, with 4 percent-plus gains from Jan. 3 lows. Options markets too imply further pound strength over the three-month period that encompasses the deadline.

Of course, market glee might be misplaced. If May fails to forge consensus within her party and with opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn and if parliament fails to agree an extension, Britain will crash out the EU without a deal. Corbyn wants a pledge from May to block上海夜生活网 a no-deal Brexit before joining cross-party talks, but May describes this as impossible. Her Plan B will be disclosed on Monday and voted on by parliament on Jan. 29. Sterling looks set for another volatile week.

-UK in deadlock over Brexit ‘Plan B’ as May and Corbyn tussle

– Better later: FX options signal more pound strength on Brexit delay signs

– Brighter future for sterling seen if no-deal Brexit is averted

Graphic: Sterling options – tmsnrt.rs/2T1hgW2

MOUNTAINS CAN’T TURN

Data out on Monday showed China’s economy slowed in the fourth quarter, under pressure from faltering domestic demand and bruising U.S. tariffs. Growth for 2018 fell to its lowest in nearly three decades, putting pressure on Beijing to roll out more stimulus to avert a worse slowdown.

Growing signs of weakness in China — which has generated nearly a third of gl,上海夜生活怎么玩Barrett,obal growth in recent years — are fuelling anxiety about risks to the world economy and weighing on profits for companies ranging from Apple to big carmakers. Other data just released shows investment and retail sales continued to languish, while the jobless rate edged higher.

Beijing has offered a series of fiscal and monetary support measures. Unlike in 2015 or during prior slowdowns, the government has been careful to avoid simply throwing state money at the problem. As the Chinese proverb goes, mountains cannot turn, only rivers can. Be it household spending sops, tax cuts, infrastructure projects funded by local governments or money market operations, China seems determined not to turn its back on a commitment to deleveraging and market reform. That makes it difficult to say when the economy will rebound.

– WRAPUP 2-China’s 2018 growth slows to 28-year low, more stimulus seen

-China cbank’s record $83 bln injection heightens worries over ailing economy –

-China to set lower GDP growth target of 6-6.5 pct in 2019 – sources-

Graphic: China GDP, exports, markets – tmsnrt.rs/2HhZgp3

3/DRAGHI-ING ON

ECB bond-buying is officially over, but with economic data and inflation both continuing to underwhelm, the central bank has little time to relax. Policymakers have acknowledged the euro zone slowdown could last longer than anticipated but will be hoping nonetheless that upcoming data might bring some relief.

In particular, they will monitor the snapshot of business activity in the bloc in the shape of flash PMIs for January. They are out on Thursday, hours before the ECB meeting, and polls indicate some stabilization is likely after recent dire readings. Powerhouse Germany, which barely skirted recession in the latter part of 2018, releases its ZEW sentiment survey on Tuesday.

ECB President Draghi is as yet unlikely to change his assessment of the balance of risks facing the economy, but that may be just a question of time. After all, China’s economic slowdown and the U.S. government shutdown are weighing on global growth and the euro zone still needs to weather the fallout from Brexit.

– Euro zone December inflation slowdown confirmed

– ECB hawk Lautenschlaeger has not given up on 2019 rate hike

– Euro zone economy faces longer slowdown, not recession: ECB’s Draghi

– ECB rate hike to be delayed as recession risks rise again

Graphic: German data disappoints – tmsnrt.rs/2Hm6jwL

4/SHUTDOWN SLOWDOWN?

Last year at Davos, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin sent the dollar plunging by saying a weak currency was good for the United States. This year though, with a government in shutdown, President Donald Trump has canceled Mnuchin’s Switzerland trip.

Trump is also economizing in other ways, including buying MacDonalds’ burgers for White House visitors. But anxiety is growing over how much the shutdown could hit U.S. growth and to what extent it will filter through to already stuttering world growth. So far, damage looks limited — jobless claims have continued to fall and the Philly Fed business outlook survey was above forecast.

But the longer it continues, the worse it gets. Not only are 800,000 government workers going without pay, a delay to tax refunds for other citizens will hit companies that rely on consumer spending.

The government has until early March before the debt ceiling kicks in. It could then also miss some social security payments. But the Democrat-controlled House shows no sign of agreeing Trump’s demands for $5.7 billion to fund a border wall. And a House vote to fund the govern,上海夜网Naia,ment through Feb. 28 was postponed to the coming week.

Mnuchin meanwhile has declined to testify to the House about how the shutdown may affect the upcoming tax filing season.

– On Day 28, no sign of end to U.S. partial government shutdown

– Shutdown clouds outlook for consumer-driven U.S. economic growth

– Treasury’s Mnuchin declines to testify before House panel on shutdown

Graphic: U.S. government shutdowns – tmsnrt.rs/2ASK2RN

5/IT’S COLD OUT THERE…

Yes, it is that time of year again! Movers and shakers from politics, central banks, industry and finance descend onto the Swiss Alpine town of Davos to brainstorm, chinwag, network, ski, party and figure out how to deal with some of the world’s most pressing problems.

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will join Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and South Africa’s Cyril Ramaphosa, among others. Of course no Davos would be complete without International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde, and Britain’s Prince William will add a splash of royal glamour. And then there are the new(ish) kids on the block: Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsanero, Italy’s Giuseppe Conte and his Spanish counterpart Pedro Sanchez.

But more noteworthy may be the list of those who won’t come: U.S. President Donald Trump and his cabinet, Brexit-bound British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron, who will stay at home to deal with the “yellow vest” protests.

This year’s theme at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum? “Globalization 4.0: Shaping a Global Architecture in the Age of the Fourth Industrial Revolution”.

– coverage of the 2019 WEF: uk.reuters.com/davos

– Gloomy fo,上海夜哪里艳遇Tallulah,recast for Davos: crises aplenty, but few world leaders

– Merkel to attend Davos and discuss Europe, Africa, AI

– Trump cancels U.S. delegation to Davos forum

Snap shares hit by second CFO exit in a year

( ) – Shares of Snap Inc fell 9 percent in early trading on Wednesday after Tim Stone became the second finance chief to leave the Snapchat operator in a year since a much-criticized redesign.

Stone joined the owner of Snapchat last May after spending two decades with Amazon.com Inc, replacing Andrew Vollero, who was responsible for taking Snap public in 2017.

Several Wall Street analysts termed Stone’s departure “materially negative”, arguing the loss of an experienced industry hand would make it tougher for the company to hire and retain top executives.

The social media firm has seen a string of top-level executives depart in the past year as it faced a stea,上海足浴夜网联系方式Tabitha,dy decline in users and tough competition from Facebook Inc’s Instagram.

“We believe that (Stone’s) departure will be a big negative on the company and hamper its execution and ability to compete in the marketplace,” Summit Insights Group analyst Jonathan Kees wrote.

“He added credibility to the senior management team which has been experience light,” Kees added.

Led by 28-year-old Chief Executive Evan Spiegel, Snap has lost more than 65 percent of its value since it was launched on the New York Stock Exchange almost two years ago.

Only three Wall Street analysts currently recommend buying Snap, while 10 recommend sellin,上海夜生活怎么玩Sabia,g, and 24 have neutral ratings, according to Refinitiv data.

RBC Capital Markets analysts cut the stock to “sector perform” fr,夜上海419龙凤论坛Caden,om “outperform” on Wednesday, while Summit Insights Group lowered its price target by 17 percent to $5.

Chief Strategy Officer Imran Khan and Stuart Bowers, vice president of monetization engineering, have also left the company in the past year.

News website Cheddar reported here separately on Tuesday that Snap’s vice president of investor relatio上海夜生活网ns, Kristin Southey, also quietly left in late November less than four months into the job.

Snap did not immediately respond to a request for comment.