Less chance of Fed lift-off, Syria stalemate and the future of search history

Technology Eye | Feb. 04, 2016

David Cameron is expected to win the eleventh-hour backing of Boris Johnson, the charismatic mayor of London, in his fight to keep Britain in the EU by promising a new UK sovereignty law .

Mr Johnson, one of Britain’s best known politicians, has in recent weeks hinted he might support a British exit, but he has struck a deal with Mr Cameron to secure his support. The London mayor has also been promised a “major cabinet job” by Mr Cameron once his term at City Hall expires on May 5. (FT)

In the news

Less chance of Fed lift-off Global financial conditions have tightened markedly since the Federal Reserve lifted interest rates in December and the central bank will have to take that into account if the situation persists into March, says Bill Dudley, the president of the New York Fed. His comments came as economists push back expectations of rate rises further. (FT)

Nein to north Africa In a surprising move, the German government has backed plans to curb the number of asylum seekers coming to Germany from Tunisia, Morocco and Algeria in response to public fears over mass migration and the suspected role of men from these countries in recent assaults in Cologne. (FT)

Notes from underground Israel’s military establishment and defence companies are developing technology to shield them on a new front: underground . The country’s ministry of defence this week confirmed that the US had earmarked $120m over three years to help it develop and produce a system to detect tunnels built by its enemies. (FT)

Blankfein is back Lloyd Blankfein made his first TV appearance after 600 hours of chemotherapy on Wednesday, to say that the US economy was not going off the rails. Six months ago the chairman and chief executive of Goldman Sachs revealed that he had been diagnosed with a form of lymphoma. (FT)

Syria stalemate Fraught Syrian peace talks have fallen apart just days after opening, with the UN special envoy suspending negotiations in Geneva as President Bashar al-Assad’s forces opened an offensive in northern Syria that infuriated an opposition that is losing ground. (FT)

The future of search history Google has put an artificial intelligence expert in charge of its search algorithms , signalling a sea change in one of the core technologies of the internet that may ultimately give intelligent machines the job of finding and sorting information for humans. (FT)

Biotech still buoyant Shares in a Chinese biotech company jumped 17 per cent when it listed on Nasdaq on Wednesday in a closely watched initial public offering that is being read as a litmus test of the sector’s ability to raise funds after a sell-off of the sector prompted by fears that Hillary Clinton will crack down on drug prices if elected US president. (FT)

Food for thought

Conservative commerce Are the Conservatives the party of business? Recent policies have raised doubts , even though the party is traditionally associated with close relations with business. (FT)

Gaddafi’s golden gun When Libyan rebels celebrated the death of Muammer Gaddafi, his confiscated gold-plated pistol was paraded as a symbol of their victory. What happened to it? (BBC)

From sushi to roe After decades of research and planning, Japan is set to make its first exports of caviar in a bid to compete with Russia and Iran. (Bloomberg)

The London that might have been Following the Great Fire of London in 1666, many proposals to transform the city were submitted. Most were not realised, due to lack of money and legal issues, but here is how the capital might have looked. (BBC)

Their big fat Cypriot wedding Greek and Turkish Cypriots have lived apart since the Turkish invasion in 1974, which was prompted by a Greek Cypriot coup. The two populations were kept almost entirely separate until 2003 but now relationships are flourishing . (Reuters)

Video of the day

John Authers reports on how lacklustre data on the US services economy sparked a strong day for the crude oil price but pushed down the US dollar. (FT)

SOURCE: World Economic Forum

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