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    Saudi Arabia appears to be leaving behind the stream of negative coverage the killing of Jamal Khashoggi elicited since 2018. Once again enthusiastically welcomed back into polite and powerful society, it is no longer as frowned upon to seek their investments and accept their favor. Saudi Arabia’s busy week of triumphs included brokering a prisoner swap between Ukraine and Russia, holding a highbrow summit on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly, marking the country’s national day, hosting the German chancellor and discussing energy supply with top White House officials. The pivot is drawing focus back to the crown prince’s ambitious re-branding of Saudi Arabia and its place in the world.

      The Federal Reserve will have to keep boosting its benchmark interest rate to a point that raises unemployment and gets inflation down from unusually high levels. That's according to two central bank officials in separate remarks Monday. The comments from both officials added to an ongoing debate about how badly the Federal Reserve’s rate hikes — the fastest in more than 40 years — will hurt the economy. By lifting its benchmark rate, the Fed is pushing up the cost of a wide range of consumer and business loans, including for mortgages, auto loans, and credit cards.

        Russian President Vladimir Putin has granted Russian citizenship to Edward Snowden, a former contractor with the U.S. National Security Agency. He has been living in Russia since 2013 to escape prosecution in the U.S. after leaking classified documents detailing government surveillance programs. He was granted permanent residency in 2020. Snowden has said he made the disclosures because he believed the U.S. intelligence community had gone too far and wrongly infringed on civil liberties. Snowden, 39, is considered by supporters to be a whistleblower who wanted to protect American civil liberties,  He currently faces charges of unauthorized disclosure of U.S. national security and intelligence information that could result in decades in prison.

          President Joe Biden has announced a new initiative that would eventually allow consumers to see a more complete price on airline tickets before they buy them. That would include baggage and change fees. The White House says the proposed rule from the Department of Transportation will prevent airlines from hiding the “true cost” of airline tickets, which would help consumers save money up front and encourage more competition among airlines to offer better fares. The requirement will apply not only to airlines directly but also on third-party search sites such as Kayak and Expedia. The rule would need to go through a 60-day comment period before final approval.

          Starbucks says it wants to start contract negotiations next month at 234 U.S. stores that have voted to unionize. The Seattle coffee giant said Monday it sent letters to stores in 36 states and the District of Columbia offering a three-week window to start negotiations. But Workers United, the union organizing Starbucks workers, is skeptical. It notes that Starbucks opposes unionization. Just three stores have begun bargaining contracts with Starbucks in the U.S. since the start of this year. Workers United says its national committee is focused on developing core proposals that workers will be able to use when they bargain at individual stores.

          Federal investigators have taken possession of a Pacific Gas and Electric Co. utility transmission pole and attached equipment in their probe into the cause of a Northern California fire that has become the largest in the state this year. The utility said Monday in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that the U.S. Forest Service is conducting a criminal investigation into the Mosquito Fire. The blaze that started on Sept. 6 has scorched 120 square miles and destroyed at least 78 homes and other structures. It is 85% contained. The utility said in a statement it is cooperating with the federal investigation and noted that the U.S. Forest Service has not determined the cause of the fire.

          The new chief at the Food and Drug Administration's tobacco center has inherited a raft of problems. Brian King joined the division tasked with regulating cigarettes, vaping products and other forms of nicotine in July. The agency is struggling to review a backlog of electronic cigarettes, which have contributed to a rise in underage vaping. It is also working to implement a long-delayed plan to ban menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars. King wants to exploit the potential for e-cigarettes to serve as as a less harmful alternative to smoking while at the same time prevent teen use.

          Abigail E. Disney has been critical of the company that bears her name before. But for the first time, Disney, the granddaughter of co-founder Roy O. Disney, has put her views into the medium the Mouse House was built on: a movie. In the new documentary “The American Dream and Other Fairy Tales,” Disney argues that the Walt Disney Co. has lost its moral compass. Disney lays out a harsh portrait of the company, particularly in regard to pay inequity and the struggles of some theme park employees to sustain their families on their pay. The company, she says, “has lost the plot.” A spokesperson for the company says its employees are “the heart and soul of Disney.”

          The European Union and the U.S. have questioned Serbia’s commitment to join Europe’s 27-nation bloc after Belgrade signed an agreement with Moscow pledging long-term “consultations” on foreign policy matters amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine.  Serbia’s officials signed the deal last week in New York with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly. At the U.N. meeting, most Western delegations shunned Russia’s top diplomat over the country’s bloody invasion of Ukraine. Serbia’s Foreign Ministry has sought to play down the importance of the signed agreement, saying is a “technical” one and relates to bilateral ties and not security issues.

          The Carlyle Group, one of the world’s top private equity firms, which portrays itself as a climate leader, published a first of its kind emissions risk declaration this year. But something was missing - due to what it called a different business model, it did not include its largest oil and gas assets in the disclosure. Carlyle has a business relationship with NGP, a $10.4 billion fund of fossil fuel investments set to account for almost half of Carlyle profits this year. Critics say it has a responsibility to be transparent about its role in climate change.


          Content by Brand Ave. Studios. The annual Amazon Prime Day is coming July 12 and 13, and per usual will offer discounts on many of your favorite things.

          Content by Brand Ave. Studios. The annual Amazon Prime Day is coming July 12 and 13, and per usual will offer discounts on many of your favorite things.

          Denmark’s maritime authority says a gas leak had been observed in a pipeline leading from Russia to Europe underneath the Baltic Sea and could pose a danger to shipping traffic. The operator of Nord Stream 2 confirmed that a leak in the pipeline had been detected southeast of the Danish island of Bornholm on Monday. Although the pipeline is not used to import gas, it is nevertheless filled. A spokesman for Nord Stream 2 said a loss of pressure had been detected in a tube early Monday, and the responsible marine authorities in Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland and Russia were immediately informed. The German government said it had “no clarity about the causes" of the leak.

          Turkey has summoned the Greek ambassador to protest the alleged deployment of dozens of U.S.-made armored vehicles to Greek islands which Ankara says should remain demilitarized in line with international treaties. Turkey’s president warned Monday that Turkey wouldn't hold back on defending its interests against Greece. Turkish media published aerial images allegedly showing showed the deployment of armored vehicles to the Aegean islands of Samos and Lesbos. The situation has heightened tensions between the two NATO countries. The state-run Anadolu Agency said Turkey summoned the Greek ambassador on Monday and also filed a protest with Washington. Turkey and Greece have decades-old disputes over an array of issues.

          The British pound has fallen to an all-time low against the U.S. dollar after the government pledged a sweeping package of tax cuts that have fueled concerns about its economic policy. The pound fell as low as $1.0373 Monday, before rallying to above $1.06 in early London trading. The British currency has lost more than 5% against the dollar since Friday, when Treasury chief Kwasi Kwarteng announced the biggest tax cuts in 50 years. It comes as the government plans to spend billions of pounds to help consumers and businesses struggling with high energy bills that are driving a cost-of-living crisis. The combination sparked investor concern about spiraling government debt.

          The Canadian government will no longer require people to wear masks on planes. Government officials also confirmed Canada is dropping the vaccine requirement for people entering the country at the end of the month. Canada, like the United States, requires foreign nationals to be vaccinated when entering the country. No change in the mandate is expected in the U.S. in the near term. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government has agreed to let a cabinet order enforcing mandatory COVID-19 vaccination requirements at the border expire Sept. 30. Transport Canada is also removing travel requirements and as of October 1 people won't have to wear masks on trains and planes.

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