Live news: Blinken pleads with Israelis and Palestinians to ease tensions
Can we afford to be more optimistic about the future? The next seven days start more positively for world geopolitics with the visit of NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg to South Korea and Japan.
On Monday, he will travel from Seoul to Tokyo to strengthen the transatlantic security alliance’s ties with its key partners in Asia. The meetings, which follow the first participation of Japan and South Korea in NATO European summits, demonstrate the alliance’s support for these countries in the face of security challenges posed by China and North Korea.
The war in Ukraine will be high on the agenda, and Tokyo and Seoul are likely to confirm the release of additional non-lethal equipment for Kyiv.
On the other hand, this week will also be a reminder of the ongoing and very real problem posed by populism and nationalists. India marks Martyrs’ Day on Monday, the 75th anniversary of the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi. As writer Ramachandra Guha points out in an essay for FT Weekend, the anti-colonial revolutionary’s veneration has waned as Hindu nationalism has risen.
In the US, the figure of former President Donald Trump will once again be of great importance as his adviser Peter Navarro faces trial on Monday for failing to comply with a subpoena from a House committee investigating the January 6, 2021 Capitol attack. .
It’s another week of strikes in the UK, starting on Monday with driving instructors at the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency. The biggest day of action comes on Wednesday, when schoolteachers, train drivers and university lecturers lower their tools as the TUC union body holds a Day to Defend the Right to Strike in opposition to a controversial government bill to curb strikes in essential services.
Rate-setting schedules have been re-agreed for the monetary policy committees of the Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank and the Bank of England.
The ECB is expected to continue with very large rate hikes, while the Fed will cut rates, signaling that it will end its 0.75 percentage point pace in December.
The Bank of England is expected to push through a 0.5 percentage point rise due to persistently high inflation, strong wage growth and unexpected resilience in the UK economy.
We are in the midst of reporting season and this week is the peak of big tech with quarterly data from Alphabet, Amazon.com, Apple, Meta and Spotify. It has been a sobering time for the sector, not least the recognition that they have been hiring en masse during the years of the Zoom pandemic.
Apple will be notable in that it is expected to break a 14-quarter growth streak in a profitable December period due to a shortage of high-quality iPhones. Blame the November outbreak of Covid-19 at a factory in Zhengzhou (known as the city of iPhone), which resulted in a shortage of mobile phones between 5 and 10 million units.
At around $1,000 a piece, that’s a $10 billion glitch, and that’s not good news for Apple given the mobile phone war with Google. Revenue in this quarter of 2021 was below $124 billion; forecasts for 2022 are slightly lower, but the hit to net income could be bigger.
Read the full calendar for the week ahead here.