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China, Russia have found new reasons to team up

  Through the latter decades of the Cold War, there was little cooperation or alignment between the Soviet Union and China. The Russians had a far more developed global military presence, a higher level of ambition to impose their ideology on others, and a much bigger economy. China was primarily focused inwardly, struggling (and eventually succeeding) in lifting most of ...

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Samsung, Intel must take a deep breath

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) spent a record $30 billion last year on factories that churn out the world’s most-advanced chips. It seems that wasn’t enough. This year, it’s decided to up the ante by forecasting a budget of as much as $44 billion. Rivals better watch out. “Every year our capex is spent in anticipation of the growth that ...

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JPMorgan, Citi pay raises leave less for investors

The great economic rebalancing between capital and labour is finally here — in banking at least. The share prices of JPMorgan Chase & Co, Citigroup Inc and most other US banks tumbled after both banks reported higher costs for 2021 and predicted more inflation to come, most of which is being driven by higher pay. What is more, the jump ...

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Raskin is a great choice for a tough job at the Fed

At long last, President Joe Biden has settled on a candidate for one of the biggest jobs in global finance: the vice chair for bank supervision at the Federal Reserve. The nominee — Duke University law professor Sarah Bloom Raskin — is a good choice for what will be an immensely challenging assignment. First, it’s worth noting that everyone on ...

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Unilever’s $68b toothpaste tilt needs another squeeze

  GlaxoSmithKline Plc is right to snub Unilever Plc’s 50 billion-pound ($68 billion) proposal to buy the UK drugmaker’s consumer healthcare arm. Unilever’s offer may be in the ballpark, but the consumer-goods giant can justify stretching further — and could easily be forced to. The asset is a unique business with scale and strong brands, including Panadol painkillers and Sensodyne ...

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Spying on Big Tech may work better

Over the years, as social media companies gorged themselves on the data of billions of people to fuel vast profits, the information flow never went the other way. Now the tables are turning. One of the most promising pieces of legislation in Congress tackling tech giants’ undue influence, out of reportedly 30 or so bills, would force such firms to ...

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The world can’t let Lithuania stand alone

  Lithuania is a small country with a big problem. After a series of perceived slights, China has brought its massive economic leverage to bear on the tiny Baltic state. Pressure increased dramatically in recent weeks after Taiwanese officials opened a de facto embassy in the Lithuanian capital using the island’s name. (The many other such offices around the world, ...

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Bring tech, innovation to climate-change fight

Over the past few weeks, Alaska recorded record-high temperatures, scientists released a “report card” showing relentless deterioration of the Arctic’s climate, and researchers warned that an ice shelf in Antarctica could collapse within a few years, dramatically increasing the region’s contribution to rising sea levels. These are signposts on a grim path. They show that damage to the cryosphere, the ...

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The Made in China plan is back, and it’s better

  As the world is grappling with the latest virus variant, China unveiled a sharpened version of the Made in China 2025 industrial policy blueprint. Previous iterations may have had nations like the US on edge, but this is the one to keep an eye on. State planners released a five-year smart manufacturing development plan in late December that aims ...

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UK retail giants shouldn’t get too cozy

Two British retailers emerged as winners this Christmas: Tesco Plc and Marks & Spencer Group Plc. While that’s a far cry from disappointing results of holidays past, both face considerable challenges ahead with concerns about inflation eating into consumer spending power and a slowdown in demand. Tesco’s UK same-store sales in its fiscal third quarter rose 0.2%, slightly below analysts’ ...

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