Overseas Headlines – January 11, 2022

United States:

Powell Says Fed to Ensure Inflation Doesn’t Take Root in Economy

“Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said the central bank will prevent higher inflation from becoming entrenched while cautioning that the post-pandemic economy might look different than the previous expansion. “We will use our tools to support the economy and a strong labor market and to prevent higher inflation from becoming entrenched,” Powell said in a brief opening statement prepared for delivery at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Banking Committee.”



U.K. Consumers Splurged in December Despite Spread of Omicron

“U.K. retail sales jumped in December as consumers splashed out on Christmas items including clothes and jewelry, defying a surge in coronavirus infections. Total sales grew 4.6% last month compared with December 2019, the British Retail Consortium said Tuesday. A separate report from Barclaycard showed consumer spending grew 12.2% in last month compared to two years before, driven by sales at supermarkets and fuel stations.”



Hong Kong’s Brain Drain Worsens as Expats, Locals Flee City

“An exodus of expatriates and locals from Hong Kong is poised to intensify in 2022, as policy makers continue their crackdown on civil society and brush off an increasing uproar over aligning with mainland China’s Covid Zero strategy. A population outflow that was triggered by the 2019 protests deepened last year to a record as the realization that the city’s strict Covid policies are here to stay sank in, and the impact of the national security law imposed by Beijing continued to roil public life.”



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