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MemosJul 2, 2020 | 18:32 GMT
Fred Burton's Summer Reading List
Fred Burton has put together a few books to add to your warm weather reading list. Some are classics and others are brand new — I can’t wait to read Brad Thor’s new thriller NEAR DARK. The Scot Harvath series never disappoints.
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SnapshotsJun 25, 2020 | 18:08 GMT
The U.S.-EU Trade War Is Poised to Intensify
The U.S.-EU trade war continues to brew and could see Brussels and Washington move forward with more tariffs through the rest of the year, even as both sides reckon with the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. On June 24, the U.S. Trade Representative's office published a list for the public comment outlining $4.3 billion worth of European products that could be subject to new tariffs as early as August. This latest escalation is part of its 16-year dispute between Washington and Brussels over government subsidies to the U.S.-based aircraft maker Boeing and its chief European rival, Airbus. Trade negotiations between the United States and European Union have already been virtually non-existent this year, due in part to the pandemic, as well as major disagreements on issues [such as agriculture. Even if they do occur, last-minute trade talks to try to avert the escalation over aircraft subsidies will thus likely fail, as both sides
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SnapshotsJun 24, 2020 | 10:00 GMT
Seeking a Political Win, Trump Takes Aim at Immigration Visas
After weeks of speculation, U.S. President Donald Trump finally issued a presidential proclamation on June 22 outlining visa changes that will significantly impede the ability of U.S. tech companies and universities to attract international talent and investment. Should they become permanent, the changes could place the United States' competitive advantage as a business hub in jeopardy by making U.S. visa programs more difficult for foreigners to access. 
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AssessmentsJun 16, 2020 | 10:00 GMT
An image depicting the global economy.
Trump’s War Against Taxing Tech Goes Global
With international negotiations stalled, many governments are choosing to unilaterally implement digital services taxes (DSTs). The United States -- which is home to the majority of tech giants that would be subject to such taxes, including Amazon, Apple and Google -- is using the threat of tariffs to both limit the global expansion of DSTs and push international negotiations toward the proposed reforms it backs. But with so many countries against Washington's preferred outcome, which critics say would allow U.S. tech companies to opt out of tax obligations in international markets, the risk of negotiations failing to reach an agreement this year is high, as is the risk of the United States implementing tariffs on its growing number of trade partners implementing DSTs. 
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On GeopoliticsMay 10, 2020 | 10:00 GMT
A mother takes photos with her baby under cherry blossoms in full bloom in Tokyo, Japan, on March 29, 2015.
The Geopolitics of Postmodern Parenting
During the two months I recently spent away from work to fulfill my demographic duty, I found that most of my conversations with visitors followed the same pattern. The talk quickly turned from the standard cooing over my baby girl to an intensive debate over parental leave: how much time and flexibility to grant new parents in the workforce, how to reconcile career ambitions with the responsibilities of human procreation, how to compensate for the crazy cost of child care and how to boost birthrates. As a white-collar, taxpaying working mother in the United States, I had become one of the statistics I used to pore over as an analyst pondering the implications of aging and shrinking populations. But you don't have to be a parent -- or an analyst, for that matter -- to care about this stuff. In fact, a lot of the global angst today over stagnant economic
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AssessmentsFeb 26, 2020 | 10:00 GMT
This photo shows fanned-out 50, 100, 200 and 500 banknotes of the euro, the currency of the eurozone.
The Eurozone Braces for a Rocky Year
Households, companies and investors alike should brace for a year of lackluster economic growth in the eurozone. The European Commission expects the 19-member currency area to grow by only 1.2 percent this year -- the same rate as 2019, but below the 1.9 percent and 2.5 percent growth seen in 2018 and 2017, respectively. While uncertainty about the future of global trade has taken a toll on Europe's economic climate and manufacturing sector, domestic consumption has nonetheless remained strong due to rising employment and modest increases in wages. The next few months, however, will present multiple sources of geopolitical risk that will continue to stall economic expansion across the eurozone, and could potentially lead to temporary recessions in countries such as Italy.
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AssessmentsNov 25, 2019 | 09:15 GMT
South Koreans participate in a rally to denounce Japan's new trade restrictions and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Aug. 24, 2019, in Seoul. The bilateral relationship between Japan and South Korea has worsened recently amid escalating trade tensions.
Japan and South Korea Brace for a Prolonged Trade Battle
Between the slings and arrows of China's global trade war with the United States, a separate battle has been brewing between the Asia-Pacific's next two largest economies: Japan and South Korea. But unlike the economic issues underpinning Beijing's fight with Washington, Tokyo and Seoul's dispute is fundamentally rooted in bitter grievances that date back to Japan's occupation of South Korea during World War II. The politically delicate nature of the dispute will continue to complicate both countries' ability -- and desire -- to bring a definitive end to their spat. But between the two, South Korea's more export-reliant economy stands more to lose from souring trade relations with Japan.
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AssessmentsNov 11, 2019 | 11:00 GMT
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (bottom image) and King Salman (left) look out from a billboard promoting Vision 2030 in Jizan, Saudi Arabia, on Dec. 16, 2018.
Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030 Remains a Hard Sell
Saudi Arabia's "Davos in the Desert" has come and gone, producing $20 billion in newly signed deals. And while the Future Investment Initiative -- as the event is officially known -- also reduced the threat of U.S. sanctions over Saudi Arabia's human rights record, investors are nevertheless weighing the pros and cons of pouring money into a kingdom where returns are far from guaranteed. Investors remain wary of major geopolitical risks, like a war with Iran and another human rights outrage that could reignite an international push to isolate Saudi Arabia, as well as domestic considerations, like the consistency of Saudi Arabia's policies amid lower oil prices and the personality politics of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Such factors will ultimately weigh down the Saudi investment strategy -- and make the 10-year drive toward Vision 2030 all the more difficult to achieve.
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AssessmentsNov 11, 2019 | 09:45 GMT
The European Commission's president-elect, Ursula von der Leyen, talks to the media during the unveiling of her new team for the 2019-2024 term. A graphic showing the specific commissioners is displayed on a large screen behind her.
What a New Commission Means for EU Policy
A new European Commission led by President Ursula von der Leyen is slated to take over in December after the European Parliament approves her team later this month. In preparation for her new post, von der Leyen has outlined a bold "geopolitical" vision that focuses on defending the European Union's interests amid growing competition among global powers like the United States and China. But whether the president-elect's commissioners will actually be able to follow through on her big plans once they take office next month will prove a far different story, as they'll be forced to work within the confines of the continent's increasingly divisive political climate and gloomy economic forecast. 
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GuidanceSep 21, 2019 | 09:00 GMT
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, left, and U.S. President Donald Trump speak during a bilateral meeting in Biarritz, France, on Aug. 26, 2019, on the third day of the annual G-7 summit.
What's Standing in the Way of a U.S.-India Trade Deal
The United States' trade war with China grabs all the headlines, but U.S. President Donald Trump is also bearing down on another major Asian economy: India. In June, Trump accused the Indian government of failing to provide "equitable and reasonable market access" and stripped New Delhi of its benefits under the Generalized System of Preferences, which enables India to export certain goods at a reduced tariff rate. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's administration retaliated by slapping tariffs on 28 U.S. goods. While the sides could soon clinch a short-term trade deal, the United States and India will have several outstanding issues to address before they finalize a more comprehensive pact. With the United States demanding that India reduce its bilateral trade surplus, open its economy to more U.S. agricultural products and go easier on U.S. technology giants, the countries remain far apart on a longer-term deal.
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On SecurityAug 13, 2019 | 09:00 GMT
U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden speaks to the Council of Europe videoconference in June 2014.
Employees Can Be the Biggest Threat — and Asset — for Workplace Security Programs
For companies and other organizations, sometimes the biggest threat comes from within. Beyond knowing the ins and outs of a facility and having a reason to be there, an "insider" can develop a detailed understanding of internal security programs, policies and procedures to help them plan out and conduct their crime.  At Stratfor, we think about the insider threat a lot as our team frequently analyzes incidents pertaining to our clients and subscribers. Insiders can pose an array of threats depending on the nature of the targeted organization. In other words, an elementary school will likely be more concerned with protecting children’s physical safety than a manufacturing company. Thus, it is important to ensure your security program protects against the full scope of threats that may impact your specific institution via comprehensive and cross-departmental efforts.
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SnapshotsJul 24, 2019 | 21:35 GMT
India: For Modi, a State Government’s Collapse Creates an Opportune Opening
After 18 days of political turmoil, the southern Indian state of Karnataka's embattled coalition government has finally collapsed -- providing a potential opening for Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to broaden its reach into the southern Indian peninsula. By July 6, 15 disgruntled state legislators had defected from the coalition, triggering a political crisis in Karnataka that ultimately led to the government's demise. The loss of the defected legislators has brought the combined number of seats shared between the Indian National Congress and the Janata Dal (Secular) parties below the amount required for a majority in Karnataka's state assembly -- thus placing the BJP in the strongest position to form the state's next government as it seeks to broaden its support base into southern India.
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