Royal fans give London tourism a bump amid UK economic woes
LONDON (AP) — Hotels, restaurants and shops are packed as royal fans pour into the heart of London to experience the flag-lined roads, pomp-filled processions and brave a mileslong line for the once-in-a-lifetime chance to bid adieu to Queen Elizabeth II. Visitors crowding into central London from as far away as the U.S. and India for the historic moment are giving a boost to…
Royal fans give London tourism a bump amid UK economic woes
LONDON (AP) — Hotels, restaurants and shops are packed as royal fans pour into the heart of London to experience the flag-lined roads, pomp-filled processions and brave a mileslong line for the once-in-a-lifetime chance to bid adieu to Queen Elizabeth II. Visitors crowding into central London from as far away as the U.S. and India for the historic moment are giving a boost to businesses at a time when the British economy is facing a cost-of-living crisis fueled by the highest inflation in four decades and predictions of a looming recession. The overall economic boost might be limited because Monday has been declared a public holiday for the queen’s funeral. But experts said renewed interest in the royal family could sustain tourism demand.
Queen’s death triggers media bonanza in works for decades
NEW YORK (AP) — Plans by news organizations that have been in place for years — even decades — to cover the death of Queen Elizabeth II were triggered and tested when the event took place. London has been inundated with journalists, with more headed to the city for the funeral services on Monday. A giant audience is expected for the culmination of all the ceremonies, which one expert called “catnip” for television networks. For many journalists, plans have gone smoothly. There were some issues on Thursday with restrictions placed by the palace on use of video from inside Westminster Hall, where the queen’s body was lying in state.
Treasury recommends exploring creation of a digital dollar
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration is moving one step closer to developing a central bank digital currency, known as the digital dollar. Administration officials say it’d help reinforce the U.S. role as a leader in the world financial system. The White House said Friday that after President Joe Biden issued an executive order in March calling on agencies to look at ways to regulate digital assets, the agencies came up with nine reports. One Treasury recommendation is the U.S. “advance policy and technical work on a potential central bank digital currency.” The Atlantic Council nonpartisan think tank says many other countries already are exploring or have created a central bank digital currency.
Serious breach at Uber spotlights hacker social deception
The ride-hailing service Uber says all its services are operational following what security professionals are calling a major data breach. It says there is no evidence the hacker got access to sensitive user data. But the breach, apparently by a lone hacker, put the spotlight on an increasingly effective and polished break-in routine: The hacker appears to have gained access by tricking an Uber employee into surrendering their credentials. Screenshots the hacker shared with security researchers indicate they obtained full access to the cloud-based systems where Uber stores sensitive customer and financial data. It is not known how much data the hacker took.
DOJ to use ‘carrot and stick’ approach on corporate crime
WASHINGTON (AP) — A top Justice Department official has announced new incentives for companies that cooperate with corporate criminal investigations and a $250 million Congressional budget request to expand its work. Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco said Thursday there has been a decline in the number of corporate criminal prosecutions over the last decade. To help address that, she is directing every division that prosecutes corporate crime to develop programs that incentivize companies to report misconduct. In some cases, no one will have to plead guilty to criminal charges if the violation was self-reported and the company fixed it. Companies will also be required to come forward more quickly with evidence of suspected misdeeds to get leniency.
China’s consumer, factory activity improve but still weak
BEIJING (AP) — Chinese official data show consumer spending and factory output improved in August but were still weak. Forecasters warned the world’s second-largest economy is vulnerable to disruption from repeated shutdowns of cities to fight virus outbreaks. Housing sales plummeted while prices edged lower. That adds to a slide in real estate activity under pressure from a government campaign to control debt that set off an economic slump in mid-2021. Chinese leaders are trying to prop up economic growth that sank to 2.5% over a year earlier in the first six months of 2022, less than half the official 5.5% target.
Q&A: Craig Newmark aims to defend democracy via philanthropy
NEW YORK (AP) — Craig Newmark twists a “Batman” quote to jokingly refer to himself as “not the nerd you want, but maybe, now and then, I’m the nerd you need.” Newmark, the founder of Craigslist, has since retired from the pioneering website that made him a billionaire, according to Forbes, but the 69-year-old says he is now busier than ever with his philanthropy. Newmark sees the bulk of his philanthropic work as a way to help protect democracy – a cause that has already claimed more than $250 million of his donations, including the Newmark Civic Life Series of Recanati-Kaplan Talks, which runs through Oct. 11 in New York City.
Poland opens new sea waterway to cut dependence from Russia
WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland’s top leaders celebrated the opening of a new canal that they say will mean ships no longer must secure Russia’s permission to sail from the Baltic Sea to Vistula Lagoon ports. The event on Saturday was timed to mark 83 years since the Soviet invasion of Poland during World War II and symbolically cut the long regional dependence. The canal cost almost 2 billion zlotys ($420 million). It was designed to allow ships to sail from the Baltic Sea and the Bay of Gdansk to Polish ports in the lagoon, without obtaining authorization to travel through Russia’s Strait of Pilawa. However, cargo ships can’t use the passage until the approach to the port of Elblag is deepened.
Oktoberfest is back but inflation hits brewers, cost of beer
MUNICH (AP) — Oktoberfest is on tap again in Germany after two years of pandemic cancellations. The beer will be just as cold and the roast pork knuckle just as crispy. Mayor Dieter Reiter says the return of the city’s hallmark tourist event on Saturday is “beautiful.” But brewers and visitors are under pressure from inflation in ways they could hardly imagine in 2019. Energy, barley, hops, even paper and glue for labels, cardboard for cases and steel barrels have all gone up in price as record inflation has taken hold across Europe. The price of one of the hefty mugs that revelers will hoist has gone up by 15%, with the brewing industry under pressure from rising costs.
Wall Street falls as FedEx warning adds to market woes
Stocks fell broadly on Wall Street, leaving the market with another week of sizable losses, as a stark warning from FedEx about rapidly worsening trends in the economy gave investors more to worry about. The S&P 500 fell 0.7% Friday. The Nasdaq lost almost 1% and the Dow lost almost half a percent. FedEx had its biggest loss on record after saying a sharp dropoff in its business had worsened in recent weeks. Markets were already on edge because of stubbornly high inflation as well as the higher interest rates being used to fight it, which will slow the economy.
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