We’re pushing limits as Biden and Putin ‘meet’ online amid escalating tensions over Ukraine and China warns that a US diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics could harm dialogue and co-operation. Rohingya citizens are suing Facebook for £150bn over the Myanmar genocide, claiming that its algorithms amplified hate speech. Elon Musk says the world doesn’t have enough people and its falling birth rate threatens human civilisation.
PUTTING ON A SQUEEZE
Supply issues are winding up the pressure, with Tesco said to be facing a Christmas ‘stock shortage’ amid a threat of strike action and New York City facing the bagel-lover’s nightmare of a shortage of cream cheese. UK house price growth has hit a 15-year high, while the Bank of England’s monetary policy chief expects UK inflation to ‘comfortably’ exceed 5% by the spring. At £30,000, this is the world’s most expensive Christmas jumper. Mercedes’ boss fears Sunday’s Formula One world championship title finale could be decided by a crash between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen.
MAKING IT LAST
Some upward movements may have further to go. Europe has its biggest ever SPAC deal, while Paragon Banking Group is reporting record full-year profits, recruiter PageGroup sees operating profits moving higher, and heating and plumbing group Ferguson is raising profits expectations. British American Tobacco is sticking to its forecasts as demand for vaping products rises. The only way is up for the FTSE All-Share today.
PLAYING A BUSTED FLUSH
Other brinkmanship is done and dusted. Vodafone’s and Orange’s merger talks are a year old and have not been revived, while this CEO just fired 900 employees over a Zoom call. An Italian man tried to dodge a COVID-19 vaccine by wearing a fake arm and now faces fraud charges, while a woman has denounced a £610 Chanel advent calendar as ‘a joke’ after receiving stickers, a magnet and a flipbook. This ‘strict vegetarian’ gives herself a day off each year to scoff pigs in blankets.
RENEWING OUR ENERGIES
This astrophotographer has just snapped his ‘clearest ever photo of the sun’. And as we learn that Viagra could be used to treat Alzheimer’s disease, don’t miss your last chance to sign up for Edison’s webinar tomorrow on building a digital healthcare ecosystem.