Archive for the ‘US news’ Category

Gold prices gleam amid Brexit and US shutdown uncertainty

Futures rose more than 7% in fourth quarter amid stock market struggles as analysts offer sparkling outlook

The longest government shutdown in US history shows no sign of ending, Brexit is roiling Europe, trade wars are still in the offing and the stock market is acting like a spooked cat. And once again, gold is shining.

Gold often shines in times of trouble. The last time there was a showdown between a US president and Congress over government spending, gold prices shot up to an all-time high, about $1,925 an ounce. That was when a Republican-controlled House of Representatives, led by John Boehner, sparred with Barack Obama over whether to lift the debt ceiling or risk the US Treasury defaulting on its payments.

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Thursday US briefing: Britain in Brexit deadlock as May clings on

How the shutdown affects a small rural town ... US plans new space sensors for missile defence ... The plant-focused diet that could save the world

Good morning, I’m Tim Walker with today’s essential stories.

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Ford and Volkswagen to announce alliance as tech reshapes industry

Car companies seek to reduce costs amid slowing sales, with announcement expected at Detroit auto show on Tuesday

Ford and Volkswagen are expected to announce an alliance on Tuesday as the two car companies look to cut the cost of the technological revolution now shaking the industry and deal with slowing sales.

The announcement is expected at the Detroit auto show and comes after Ford and VW signed a memorandum of understanding last June to explore several joint projects, including the development of a range of commercial vehicles.

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The aliens are coming. And they’ve caught us with our pants down | James Felton

Radio signals could be a sign of extraterrestrial life. But, with Brexit and Trump, could they have chosen a worse time to call?

Earlier this week, astronomers announced that they had observed repeated bursts of radio waves coming from deep space, with some experts suggesting this could be evidence of alien life. Is this it? Could extraterrestrials finally be trying to contact us? I hope not.

Related: Mysterious fast radio bursts from deep space ‘could be aliens’

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Trump and the Brexiters should own the mess they lied us into | Gary Younge

Finally, their cheap rhetoric and empty promises are butting up against hard realities

Three years ago, shortly after I arrived back in Britain after 12 years in the US, my gas meter was stolen. When the new one arrived it bore a note, insisting that it should not be stolen. It reminded me of the poster in the window of the Boys and Girls club at the top of my street in Chicago that read: “Stop killing people.” Some things, should not need to be said.

So it was on Wednesday as MPs passed an amendment demanding the government come back with a plan B within three days, if the Brexit deal is defeated next Tuesday. The real scandal was not that the Speaker, John Bercow, had to creatively interpret parliamentary rules so that the vote could take place, but that the vote was necessary at all. Plan A isn’t up to much. It was withdrawn last month at the 11th hour because it was clearly going to be voted down. Nothing has changed. It will almost certainly be rejected next week. Time is running out. We have no hat and the EU wouldn’t lend us a rabbit to pull out of it even if we did. Under these circumstances the government shouldn’t be forced to come back with a plan B in a timely fashion. When it comes to backups they should be well down the alphabet by now.

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There is no leftwing justification for Brexit. We must fight it to the last | Chris Matheson

The Brexiteers want to tie us to the Trumpist US – and ditch the social obligations of the EU. The left has to stand against them

  • Chris Matheson is Labour MP for City of Chester

Perhaps the only success of David Cameron’s reckless EU referendum gamble was that it took the Tories’ toxic split on Europe and shared it with the rest of the country. At least they are no longer the laughing stock: now we all are.

Yet among the cluster of possible solutions around Norway this or Canada that, or a customs union of sorts, the danger remains that the bigger picture is being missed: the political effect of Brexit on the UK and our foreign relations. Brexit is one part of a project to reshape the politics of the west and set it in concrete. And too many on the left are happy to sleepwalk into that oblivion.

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Our uncivil war over Brexit was fuelled by deceit, not one oddball | Anne Perkins

James Graham’s Brexit drama foregrounds the crucial role of Dominic Cummings. But there was more to it than that

Right on cue, as the witching hour of Brexit closes in, we are offered an opportunity to reflect on the forces that brought us to this state of national disarray and division. One of the most eye-catching things about James Graham’s drama Brexit: The Uncivil War (screened on Channel 4 tomorrow evening), is that David Cameron proved too dull to make the final draft. The author of this whole catastrophe – the man who, in the interests of party management, put the referendum commitment into the manifesto and as prime minister made it happen – is thus reduced to the status of Gavrilo Princip, the assassin who unwittingly triggered the first world war.

James Graham’s genius is for poking about in the stomach of the beast

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