We’ve summarised the 15 key stories of the last week into an easily digestible briefing so that you can stay up to date on what’s happening around the world. You can subscribe to receive the briefing in your inbox each week.
- Joe Biden is now President-Elect after defeating Donald Trump in the US elections. On election night Trump led in many states including Florida, but as mail-in ballots were counted Biden flipped states including Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, allowing him to push past the all-important 270 electoral votes.
- Donald Trump has launched numerous lawsuits in multiple states aimed at challenging the results of the election after he became the first incumbent US president to lose a presidential election in almost 30 years. He alleges widespread election fraud took place with mail-in ballots, but there appears to be no evidence to support this.
- The blue wave that was predicted for the Democrats never materialised after they failed to take the Senate. While several races will go to runoffs, including in Georgia, it is unlikely that Democrats will win a majority. The results will make it difficult for Biden to push through his ambitious agenda.
- Kamala Harris will be the first black and Asian-American woman to become US Vice President. Only a year ago, she was in consideration for the democratic nomination, but after failing to win the nomination, Joe Biden offered her the role as his running mate.
- Austria has been shaken after a terrorist attack took place in Vienna last Monday. A lone gunman opened fire in a central part of the city, killing 4 and injuring 23 more. He was shot dead by police, who later identified him as an “Islamist terrorist”.
- Denmark has announced that it will need to cull all its mink after a mutation of Covid-19 in minks was found to be able to spread to humans. Denmark is the world’s largest producer of mink fur, with over 17 million minks, but all will now have to be killed, as the new strain of Covid-19 could jeopardise the success of any future vaccine.
- Mass testing has started in Liverpool this week, as part of the Government’s moon-shot plans to roll out mass testing across the nation. The army have been deployed to support the plans and it has been announced that three more towns will soon start similar operations.
- Barely a year after the Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed won the Nobel Peace Prize, Ethiopia is on the brink of civil war. Troops have been ordered into the Tigray region in the north of Ethiopia after a supposed attack by Tigrayan soldiers on a federal army base. A state of emergency has been declared, effectively sealing the region off.
Business & Economics
- Just days after Rishi Sunak announced that the furlough scheme would continue throughout November, it has been announced that the scheme will in fact continue until March. The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme will also be increased, and an extra £2 billion has been pledged for the devolved governments.
- The IPO of Ant was suspended on Tuesday night, just days before shares were supposed to start trading on the Shanghai and Hong Kong stock exchanges. It was suspended after Chinese regulators announced draft regulations that would force Ant to change its business model.
- Erdogan has fired the Governor of the Turkish Central Bank, his second in just over a year. The lira has slumped significantly this year, but Murat Uysal, the former governor, appears to have done everything Erdogan wanted, including dramatically slashing interest rates, so the decision remains unexplained.
- The Bank of England have announced a further £150 billion of quantitative easing to support the economy through the effects of the second lockdown. However, the Bank has not cut interest rates any further, holding them at 0.1%.
- The administrators of the former FTSE 100 company NMC Health have announced a £1 billion lawsuit against EY, who acted as the auditors for NMC. They allege that EY was negligent in signing off on NMC’s accounts after it transpired that NMC had hidden nearly $4 billion from their balance sheet.
- The election of Joe Biden saw stocks rally this week. Technology stocks in particular rose as it became clear that while Biden would win the presidency, the Republicans would keep control of the Senate. A divided government will make it hard for Biden to press ahead with the regulatory reforms he was planning.
- It has been revealed that Amazon is a member of the CBI tax committee, which lobbies the government over tax issues. The news is controversial, as Amazon has received criticism for the minimal taxes that it pays in the UK, especially after it was revealed that they wouldn’t have to pay the new digital services tax.
Written by Milo Dennison and Ed Hilditch