December 19, 2019
Trump Impeached on Two Counts by House, Setting Up Senate Trial
“The U.S. House of Representatives impeached President Donald Trump on charges of abuse of power and obstructing Congress, the culmination of an effort by Democrats that further inflamed partisan tensions in Washington and deepened the nation’s ideological divide. The historic votes on Wednesday evening, which won the support of almost all Democrats in the House but not a single Republican, make Trump only the third president in U.S. history to be impeached — and likely the only impeached president to win his party’s nomination for re-election. The Senate will hold a trial early next year to decide whether the president should be convicted on the charges and removed from office, though the Republicans who have the majority in that chamber will almost certainly acquit him.”
Bank of England Keeps Powder Dry as Brexit Moves into Next Stage
“The Bank of England signaled it will focus on the next phase of Brexit negotiations as two policy makers continued to push for an immediate interest-rate cut. Officials said it was too early to tell whether the clearer path for the U.K.’s departure from European Union on the back of Boris Johnson’s election win will improve sentiment. They repeated that monetary policy may need to add stimulus if Brexit uncertainty remains entrenched or global growth failed to stabilize. “It was possible that household and business sentiment could pick up in the near term,” the bank said in minutes of its December meeting published Thursday. “Further out, the responses of companies and households would depend on developments in the next stage of the Brexit process, including negotiations about the nature of, and the transition to, the U.K.’s future trading relationships.” ”
Rising Demand for Loans in China Conceals Economic Weakness
“The improvement in China’s credit figures in recent months overstates actual demand for loans from the real economy, according to economists, suggesting that a recent stabilization in output will be hard to sustain. The amount of medium and long-term loans to non-financial companies has been rising compared to a year earlier since August, a trend that usually suggests improving sentiment as companies borrow more to investment. However, not all the increase in lending is going to productive uses, with some helping local government financing companies repay or rollover debt, according to analysts from Everbright Securities Ltd and ANZ Bank China Ltd.”
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