Macron Not Ready to Calm Down…

(Bloomberg) — Emmanuel Macron is mak­ing it clear that French fury isn’t ebbing after Aus­tralia can­celed a $66 bil­lion sub­ma­rine order in favor of a new defense pact with the U.S. and Britain.

After the deal was announced on Wednes­day, the French pres­i­dent recalled ambas­sadors to Wash­ing­ton and Can­ber­ra and can­celed events, a sym­bol­ic ges­ture rare among such close allies. French offi­cials say Macron is look­ing for an ade­quate response, and they’ve been renew­ing his calls for Europe to boost its own defense capabilities.

Macron’s pub­lic reac­tion is part­ly direct­ed at a domes­tic audi­ence. Sev­en months before a pres­i­den­tial elec­tion, his main rival, the nation­al­ist Marine Le Pen, is clos­ing in accord­ing to some polls. He wants to show vot­ers he’s tough. But allies are like­ly to soon call time on the outrage. 

Macron Not Ready to Calm Down…

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(Bloomberg) — Emmanuel Macron is mak­ing it clear that French fury isn’t ebbing after Aus­tralia can­celed a $66 bil­lion sub­ma­rine order in favor of a new defense pact with the U.S. and Britain.

After the deal was announced on Wednes­day, the French pres­i­dent recalled ambas­sadors to Wash­ing­ton and Can­ber­ra and can­celed events, a sym­bol­ic ges­ture rare among such close allies. French offi­cials say Macron is look­ing for an ade­quate response, and they’ve been renew­ing his calls for Europe to boost its own defense capabilities.

Macron’s pub­lic reac­tion is part­ly direct­ed at a domes­tic audi­ence. Sev­en months before a pres­i­den­tial elec­tion, his main rival, the nation­al­ist Marine Le Pen, is clos­ing in accord­ing to some polls. He wants to show vot­ers he’s tough. But allies are like­ly to soon call time on the outrage. 

Canadians could make him pay for gamble…

Polls show the Lib­er­al Par­ty of Cana­di­an Prime Min­is­ter Justin Trudeau in an almost dead heat with the rival Con­ser­v­a­tives ahead of Monday’s snap fed­er­al elec­tion. But for the six-year prime min­is­ter, even a nar­row vic­to­ry may sting of defeat. When Trudeau chose this sum­mer to call the vote, two years ear­li­er than expect­ed, he and his allies believed their rel­a­tive­ly suc­cess­ful han­dling of the coro­n­avirus pan­dem­ic would help con­vert their cur­rent minor­i­ty gov­ern­ment into one bol­stered by a par­lia­men­tary majority.

On the eve of the elec­tion, Trudeau’s hopes for an expand­ed man­date in a third term look to be dashed. The like­li­est out­come, my col­league Aman­da Colet­ta not­ed, may be that Trudeau’s Lib­er­als emerge with a plu­ral­i­ty of the 338 seats in Canada’s House of Com­mons, but not the 170 need­ed to claim a major­i­ty. Their leg­isla­tive agen­da will once more face sig­nif­i­cant road­blocks in par­lia­ment. In polls over the course of the 36-day cam­paign peri­od, the Lib­er­als and Con­ser­v­a­tives have been neck-in-neck, often with­in the mar­gin of error. They are jostling along­side a num­ber of nation­al par­ties, includ­ing the left-lean­ing New Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty, the Greens and the region­al­ist Bloc Québécois.

With the race so tight, the final ver­dict may not be known by day’s end.

How Accounting Giants Craft Favorable Rules From Inside Govt…

For six years, Audrey Ellis and Adam Feuer­stein worked togeth­er at PwC, the giant account­ing firm, help­ing the world’s biggest com­pa­nies avoid taxes.

In mid-2018, one of Mr. Feuerstein’s clients, an influ­en­tial asso­ci­a­tion of real estate com­pa­nies, was try­ing to per­suade gov­ern­ment offi­cials that its mem­bers should qual­i­fy for a new fed­er­al tax break. Mr. Feuer­stein knew just the per­son to turn to for help. Ms. Ellis had recent­ly joined the Trea­sury Depart­ment, and she was draft­ing the rules for this very deduction.

That sum­mer, Ms. Ellis met with Mr. Feuer­stein and his client’s lob­by­ists. The next week, the Trea­sury grant­ed their wish — a deci­sion poten­tial­ly worth bil­lions of dol­lars to PwC’s clients.

Battle for Digital Privacy Reshaping Internet…

Apple intro­duced a pop-up win­dow for iPhones in April that asks peo­ple for their per­mis­sion to be tracked by dif­fer­ent apps.

Google recent­ly out­lined plans to dis­able a track­ing tech­nol­o­gy in its Chrome web browser.

And Face­book said last month that hun­dreds of its engi­neers were work­ing on a new method of show­ing ads with­out rely­ing on people’s per­son­al data.

China accuses of stoking arms race…

Chi­na on Thurs­day slammed a deci­sion by the Unit­ed States and Britain to share sen­si­tive nuclear sub­ma­rine tech­nol­o­gy with Aus­tralia, a move seen as a direct chal­lenge to Bei­jing and its grow­ing mil­i­tary ambitions.

After Pres­i­dent Biden’s announce­ment on Wednes­day of a new defense alliance, to be known as AUKUS, Chi­nese For­eign Min­istry spokesman Zhao Lijian described the agree­ment as “extreme­ly irre­spon­si­ble” while Chi­nese state media warned Aus­tralia that it was now an “adver­sary” of Chi­na and should “pre­pare for the worst.”

At a reg­u­lar news brief­ing in Bei­jing, Zhao said the alliance “seri­ous­ly under­mined region­al peace and sta­bil­i­ty, aggra­vat­ed the arms race and hurt inter­na­tion­al non­pro­lif­er­a­tion efforts.”

Supermarkets Already Stockpiling Holiday Items…

For U.S. con­sumers, Thanks­giv­ing is still two months away. At gro­cery chain Tops Mar­kets LLC, Jeff Cul­hane was shop­ping for turkeys last winter.

Tops and oth­er U.S. super­mar­ket oper­a­tors start­ed pur­chas­ing turkeys, spices and cran­ber­ry sauce ear­ly this year, aim­ing to avoid short­ages that left some store shelves emp­ty in 2020. Gro­cery chains are strug­gling with sup­ply-chain chal­lenges ahead of what is typ­i­cal­ly their busiest time of the year, and some exec­u­tives said they are prepar­ing for con­sumers to host larg­er gath­er­ings than they did late last year—though it is becom­ing less clear how peo­ple will spend hol­i­days as the Delta vari­ant dri­ves Covid-19 cas­es higher.

“We locked down turkeys in the sec­ond, third week of Feb­ru­ary,” said Mr. Cul­hane, senior vice pres­i­dent of mer­chan­dis­ing for Tops.

2nd Largest Real Estate Developer defaults…

Protests inten­si­fy at Chi­na Ever­grande Group offices across the coun­try as the devel­op­er falls fur­ther behind on promis­es to more than 70,000 investors. Con­struc­tion of unfin­ished prop­er­ties with enough floor space to cov­er three-fourths of Man­hat­tan grinds to a halt, leav­ing more than a mil­lion home­buy­ers in limbo.

Fire sales pum­mel an already shaky real estate mar­ket, squeez­ing oth­er devel­op­ers and rip­pling through a sup­ply chain that accounts for more than a quar­ter of Chi­nese eco­nom­ic out­put. Covid-weary con­sumers retrench even fur­ther, and the risk of pop­u­lar dis­con­tent ris­es dur­ing a polit­i­cal­ly sen­si­tive tran­si­tion peri­od for Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping. Cred­it-mar­ket stress spreads from low­er-rat­ed prop­er­ty com­pa­nies to stronger peers and banks. Glob­al investors who bought $527 bil­lion of Chi­nese stocks and bonds in the 15 months through June begin to sell.

While it’s impos­si­ble to know for sure what would hap­pen if Bei­jing allows Evergrande’s down­ward spi­ral to con­tin­ue unabat­ed, Chi­na watch­ers are gam­ing out worst-case sce­nar­ios as they con­tem­plate how much pain the Com­mu­nist Par­ty is will­ing to tol­er­ate. Pres­sure to inter­vene is grow­ing as signs of finan­cial con­ta­gion increase.

Idaho rations health care…

In anoth­er omi­nous sign about the spread of the delta vari­ant, Ida­ho pub­lic health lead­ers on Thurs­day expand­ed health care rationing statewide and indi­vid­ual hos­pi­tal sys­tems in Alas­ka and Mon­tana have enact­ed sim­i­lar cri­sis stan­dards amid a spike in the num­ber of unvac­ci­nat­ed COVID-19 patients requir­ing hospitalization.

The deci­sions marked an esca­la­tion of the pan­dem­ic in sev­er­al West­ern states strug­gling to con­vince skep­ti­cal peo­ple to get vaccinated.

The Ida­ho Depart­ment of Health and Wel­fare made the announce­ment after St. Luke’s Health Sys­tem, Idaho’s largest hos­pi­tal net­work, asked state health lead­ers to allow “cri­sis stan­dards of care” because the increase in COVID-19 patients has exhaust­ed the state’s med­ical resources.

US, Australia, UK unveil new security partnership as Beijing expands military, influence…

res­i­dent Joe Biden announced the for­ma­tion of a new secu­ri­ty part­ner­ship between the Unit­ed States, Aus­tralia and the Unit­ed King­dom that seeks to strength­en sta­bil­i­ty in the Indo-Pacif­ic region as Chi­na expands its mil­i­tary might and influence.

Prime Min­is­ters Scott Mor­ri­son of Aus­tralia and Boris John­son of the Unit­ed King­dom joined Biden vir­tu­al­ly for the announce­ment of the partnership.

“Today we’re tak­ing anoth­er his­toric step to deep­en and for­mal­ize coop­er­a­tion among all three of our nations because we all rec­og­nize the imper­a­tive of ensur­ing peace and sta­bil­i­ty in the Indo-Pacif­ic over the long term,” Biden said from the East Room of the White House. “This is about invest­ing in our great­est source of strength, our alliances,” Biden said.

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