23 May 2019 FT — Articles to Read

23 May 2019


Question: According to MSN: Money, what are surprising sacrifices Americans would make to become millionaires?


African leaders quell dissent by shutting down internet – Pg. 3

–          Authoritarian governments in Africa are using internet shutdowns as a tool of repression as they strong-arm telecoms companies into flicking the off switch

–          The official orders to block internet access and messaging services have left operators caught, …between their obligations to regulators and a moral duty to protect customers’ freedom to communicate

–          Both the UN and the African Union have passed resolutions condemning internet shutdowns as a violation of human rights… (Prof Note: Freedom of information…a human right!  There is hope!)

–          Across Africa, platforms such as WhatsApp and Facebook have made it easier for politicians, activists and citizens to talk and organize at speed via smartphones.  But the government’s ability to shut down those conversations has become a powerful weapon in the arsenal of autocratic leaders

–          Advocacy group Access Now estimates there were 188 shutdowns globally in 2018, up from 108 in 2017 and 75 in 2016.  Over those three years, 310 occurred in Asia and 46 in Africa



Emerging economies feel chill winds of shifts in global trade and supply chains – Pg. 3

–          For the past three decades, many emerging economies have relied on their role in global trade and supply chains to drive growth – but disruption is biting them as the trade war between the US and China intensifies

–          Global trade fell by 1.9% in February from a year earlier on a rolling three-month basis, ….

–          …emerging economies are set to grow by 4.45 this year…

–          The slowdown is particularly noticeable in emerging Asian economies, which are set to grow at their slowest rate since 2001 – by 6.3%…


Lowe’s cuts outlook under heavy costs burden – Pg. 12

–          Home improvement chain Lowe’s slashed guidance for 2019 as rising costs weighed on first-quarter earnings, raising doubts about its plan to claw back shares from Home Depot

–          Lowes is closing underperforming stores


Trade war sparks fears of China weaponizing US Treasuries – Pg. 19

–          China, the largest foreign creditors to the US government with total Treasury holdings in excess of $1.2tn, sold $20bn of securities with a maturity exceeding one year in March…the sales accounted to China’s largest retreat from the market in more than two years

–          China’s holdings of Treasuries are inextricably linked to the country’s trade with the US.  China receives dollars in payment for its exports to America, and then needs to invest that money somewhere


Answer: (1) Never eat out or drink alcohol; (2) Work longer and/or retire later; (3) Drive an older car; (4) Keep a job they do not like; (5) Deal with higher levels of work-related stress; (6) Take on a second job; (7) Give up vacation time at work; (8) Never attend a fun event; (9) Delay starting a family; (10) Giving up their hobbies; (11) Move back home with parents; (12) Become a social outcast or pariah; (13) Never travel; (14) Give up a consistent source of income; (15) Give up all technology; (16) Close off all romantic relationships; (17) Gain 100 lbs