Asia Covid19 North America 

The US and China Want a Divorce, but Neither Can Afford One

Three months into the global coronavirus pandemic, there are growing signs that the long marriage between China and the US—indeed between China and the developed world—is coming apart. The virus shut Chinese factories in January and February; then it exposed how dependent the US and Europe had become on China for everything from drugs to medical equipment. That’s prompted “a rethink of how much any country wants to be reliant on any other country,” in the words of Elizabeth Economy of the Council on Foreign Relations. As another commentator put…

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Texas official suggests elderly willing to die for economy

The lieutenant governor of Texas argued in an interview on Fox News Monday night that the United States should go back to work, saying grandparents like him don’t want to sacrifice the country’s economy during the coronavirus crisis. Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, 69, made the comments on Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight” after President Donald Trump said he wanted to reopen the country for business in weeks, not months. Patrick also said the elderly population, who the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said are more at risk for COVID-19, can take care of…

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Covid19 North America 

Why Congress considered a digital dollar in its coronavirus response

The coronavirus stimulus package has resurrected calls for the U.S. government to offer a central bank digital currency, public mobile wallets and postal banking—controversial ideas that are hard to pull off, but exist outside the U.S. and could dent interchange fees and private stablecoin projects like Facebook’s Libra. The $2.5 billion House coronavirus package proposal from Democrats initially included a “digital dollar” to distribute the government payments designed to support small businesses and their workers.  Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., proposed legislation that would use the U.S. Postal Service to help…

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Mining 

Gold Fields shuns South Africa exit following South Deep turnaround

Gold Fields won’t be rushing to join AngloGold Ashanti in exiting South Africa, after its last mine returned to profit. The South Deep operation generated $15mn of net cash in 2019, after a decade of losses, reports Reuters. Profitability will improve this year as output climbs at the mine that sits on the world’s second-biggest known body of gold-bearing ore. For Chief Executive Officer Nick Holland, the mine has the potential to be a “shining light” for a South African gold industry in terminal decline. “We have a responsibility to…

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