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Breakingviews - IMF crystal ball is cloudiest on what matters most

The International Monetary Fund’s crystal ball is murkiest about some of the things which matter most to the global economy. Unfortunately, the countries most responsible for the cloudy outlook are also the ones least likely to heed the international lender’s advice.

Breakingviews - Hong Kong seeks new traffic cop for wonky market

Running Hong Kong’s securities regulator is not a job for the fiercely ambitious. Ashley Alder, who has helmed the Securities and Futures Commission for eight years, is stepping down in 2020 having won some moderate battles and lost some bigger ones. The job he vacates is unique in financial regulatory circles, but not really in a good way.

Breakingviews - The Exchange: A new space race

Fifty years ago, NASA landed the first people on the moon. Today, billionaires like Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos are blasting satellites into space to boost global internet coverage. Adrian Steckel of SoftBank-backed OneWeb explains why there’s a brewing gold rush in low-earth orbit.

Breakingviews - India Insight: Oyo gives off a WeWorky vibe

Oyo Hotels & Homes might be the fastest-growing big company in the world. Ritesh Agarwal’s Indian startup is moving at dizzying speed, frantically racing to become the world’s top hotel-room provider and more. Oyo’s rise to a $10 billion valuation and dealings with Japanese investor SoftBank and its Vision Fund also echo some of the hype before the fall of Adam Neumann’s shared office space empire The We Company. 

Breakingviews - U.S.-China trade deal augurs modest peace dividend

It’s premature to pop any champagne for a U.S.-China trade deal. President Donald Trump says a partial pact with Beijing includes up to $50 billion in agricultural purchases. Important issues such as intellectual property theft are up in the air, though. And many companies have already started the pricey process of upending their supply chains.

Breakingviews - Google could buff its browser-privacy blemishes

Google’s browser privacy could use more cover. Chrome’s owner lags both Mozilla’s Firefox and Apple’s Safari in trying to make the web less creepy. The prospect of losing revenue may explain the Alphabet unit’s resistance to blocking certain ad trackers.

Breakingviews - Send the A-Team to Saudi’s “Davos in the Desert”

Who’s off to Riyadh later this month? A year ago, finance executives from BlackRock’s Larry Fink to JPMorgan’s Jamie Dimon stayed away from the Future Investment Initiative, Saudi Arabia’s annual money junket, following the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul by the kingdom’s agents. The calculus on whether to attend the so-called “Davos in the Desert” looks different 12 months on.

Breakingviews - Review: Making American taxes great again

Two Frenchmen want to make American taxes great again. Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman are students of Thomas Piketty, whose tome on inequality sold two million copies. Now the pair, both economics professors at the University of California, Berkeley have produced their own much shorter book: “The Triumph of Injustice: How the Rich Dodge Taxes and How to Make Them Pay”. It’s a combination of Piketty-style number crunching with some helpful cultural analysis, plu

Breakingviews - Markets show Boris Johnson benefits of Brexit deal

Markets are showing Boris Johnson the benefits of striking a Brexit deal. The pound bounced and shares in UK-focused companies rose after the British prime minister and his Irish counterpart on Thursday declared they had found a “pathway” out of their standoff. An agreement is far from certain, and UK parliamentary support cannot be taken for granted. But the advantages of avoiding a chaotic departure from the European Union are crystal clear.

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