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Bloomberg

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    ...Bloomberg The world’s cities will add 2.5 billion more residents by 2050, more than half of them in Asia. The effect of this great migration on climate change will depend in part on what kind of homes, factories and office buildings they live and work in. It’s a seemingly minor but significant issue that should attract attention from officials gathered at this week’s United Nations-sponsored climate talks in Bonn. (Michael Bloomberg, the founder and owner of Bloomberg LP, is the UN special envoy for cities and climate change.) Buildings generate almost 20% of energy-related greenhouse-gas emissions — a proportion that’s likely to rise as onetime farmers move into more energy-intensive modern homes. Yet less than 10% of the $4.6 trillion spent on construction in 2015 went into energy-efficient “green” buildings. The reasons are many: Some energy-saving technologies and designs have only recently become widely accessible. ...

    Live Mint on Nov. 18, 2017, 1:38 p.m.

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    ...If so, you’re in good company. No less an authority than Richard H. Thaler, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in economics this week for his work on the irrational behaviour of humans, can’t get his head around it either. “We seem to be living in the riskiest moment of our lives, and yet the stock market seems to be napping,” Thaler told Bloomberg TV on Tuesday as the S&P 500 Index marched higher. “I admit to not understanding it.” To be sure, this is an unconventional bull market, and Thaler probably realizes more than he’s letting on that one needs to view the market through an unconventional lens. ...

    Live Mint on Oct. 11, 2017, 12:47 p.m.

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    ...Catalan officials should never have scheduled the vote—but once they did, Spanish officials should not have tried to stop it. Resolving this conflict just got harder. Rajoy has tried to portray the referendum, in which Catalan authorities say 42% of Catalans voted about nine to one for independence, purely as a matter of law enforcement: Spain’s constitutional court had declared it illegal, so he deployed police to attempt to stop the vote from going forward—arresting politicians, beating voters, seizing ballot boxes. The violence that broke out was shocking to see in western Europe; Iraqi Kurdistan’s recent independence referendum was more peaceful. A seditionist challenge to an elected national government cannot be taken lightly, and the Catalan independence movement’s blithe disregard for the rule of law is inexcusable. ...

    Live Mint on Oct. 3, 2017, 1:23 p.m.

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    ...A better legacy would be as the man who reshaped the world’s third-biggest economy. Anything less wouldn’t be worth the risk. Abe’s approval ratings have rebounded lately and the opposition is in disarray, but most Japanese oppose Abe’s decision to call elections more than a year early. Four in 10 say they’re undecided about who to vote for, and many could shift loyalties to a new party formed by popular Tokyo governor Yuriko Koike. If the ruling Liberal Democratic Party loses seats, even a victorious Abe could face internal rumblings about his leadership. With nuclear tensions rising on the Korean Peninsula, the last thing the region needs is a Japan consumed by political dysfunction. Abe came into office pledging first and foremost to transform the economy. ...

    Live Mint on Sept. 27, 2017, 8:59 a.m.

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    ...AFP Almost a year on, India’s ban on large-denomination bills has been deemed a “total failure”. That’s not quite fair. True, the primary goal of flushing out tax cheats has been a flop. But a secondary goal—“to move toward the cashless society”, as India’s finance minister put it—still has real promise. The rest of the world, in fact, could learn a lot from this botched experiment. A report last month showed that 99% of invalidated bills have now made their way back to banks, suggesting the government’s plan to extinguish illicit cash has foundered. At the same time, though, currency in circulation is down by about 25% from where it would otherwise have been, according to Bloomberg Intelligence, while electronic transactions are up. If that trend continued, it could be a big deal. India has inefficient banks and lots of corruption. Its cost of cash—in access fees, maintenance expenses and so on—is among the highest in the world. ...

    Live Mint on Sept. 11, 2017, 11:31 a.m.

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    ...AFP Almost a year on, India’s ban on large-denomination bills has been deemed a “total failure”. That’s not quite fair. True, the primary goal of flushing out tax cheats has been a flop. But a secondary goal—“to move toward the cashless society”, as India’s finance minister put it—still has real promise. The rest of the world, in fact, could learn a lot from this botched experiment. A report last month showed that 99% of invalidated bills have now made their way back to banks, suggesting the government’s plan to extinguish illicit cash has foundered. At the same time, though, currency in circulation is down by about 25% from where it would otherwise have been, according to Bloomberg Intelligence, while electronic transactions are up. If that trend continued, it could be a big deal. India has inefficient banks and lots of corruption. Its cost of cash—in access fees, maintenance expenses and so on—is among the highest in the world. ...

    Live Mint on Sept. 11, 2017, 11:31 a.m.

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    ...AP Is imported steel a threat to national security? How about aluminium ? The White House has its suspicions, and plans to invoke an arcane statute to investigate. If the probes turn up anything, President Donald Trump will have essentially unlimited power to restrict or limit imports in response. Despite the administration’s claims, this sounds like a pretext for imposing tariffs outside of the normal trade-dispute system, in an effort to pressure China. That would be unwise: New tariffs won’t do much to change China’s behaviour but will hurt US consumers and businesses. Worse, relying on a flimsy national-security rationale could set a disturbing precedent. The US has already lodged a complaint that China provides aluminium producers with artificially cheap loans and subsidized inputs. It is being heard at the World Trade Organization, the proper forum for such disputes. Trump’s predecessor brought 16 trade cases against China there, and has prevailed in every one decided thus far. Trump’s approach, by contrast, would only worsen matters. ...

    Live Mint on April 28, 2017, 10:09 a.m.

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    ...Trump was clearly justified in Thursday’s decision to order cruise missile strikes on Syria’s Shayrat airbase, from where the regime had launched a sarin gas attack on civilians earlier in the week. As a sombre Trump noted, the world could not let such a violation of the Chemical Weapons Convention—not to mention civilized norms—go unpunished. The strikes themselves were targeted and proportional; the US military says that Russian personnel at the airbase were warned ahead of time to avoid sparking a wider clash. Allies welcomed the move, and it should go some way toward deterring any future use of chemical weapons on the Syrian battlefield. ...

    Live Mint on April 8, 2017, 6:33 p.m.