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US budget deficit expands to $779 billion in fiscal 2018 as spending surges

The U.S. federal budget deficit rose in fiscal 2018 to the highest level in six years as spending climbed, the Trump administration said Monday. The deficit jumped to $779 billion, $113 billion or 17 percent higher than the previous fiscal period, according to a statement from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney. It was larger than any year since 2012, when it topped $1 trillion. The ... Full story

Civis Analytics is using big data to predict disaster outcomes

In August 2017, Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Houston and poured water on the city for days, growing into the worst documented rainstorm in United States history. In the months after the storm, it became clear to the Houston Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) that the money coming in from FEMA for homeowners impacted by flooding would not be enough; it rarely is. FEMA bases how much aid it administers to a disaster-struck ... Full story

Ed Sheeran paid more U.K. tax in 2017 than Starbucks or Amazon

Specificity can be your friend. I could tell you that an elephant can eat up to 600 pounds of food a day, but you’d get a clearer picture of just how much that is if I said it’s equal to about 1,200 Big Macs. Of course the idea that major corporations don’t necessarily pay a fair percentage of tax on earnings around the world isn’t new. It’s something people and governments around the globe, including President Trump, have griped about. But the ... Full story

‘Hyperalarming’ study shows massive insect loss

The emerald anole, one of the main insect eaters in the Luquillo forest of Puerto Rico. (Brad Lister/PNAS). Insects around the world are in a crisis, according to a small but growing number of long-term studies showing dramatic declines in invertebrate populations. A new report suggests that the problem is more widespread than scientists realized. Huge numbers of bugs have been lost in a pristine national forest in Puerto Rico, the study found, ... Full story

Tencent Music Puts IPO on Hold Amid Turbulent Market Conditions

On October 3 rd , the Dow Jones Industrial Average reached a record high of 26,336.62. Since then, stocks have fallen sharply. On Wednesday, the Dow Jones dropped 800 points. Amazon lost 6.2%. Netflix went down 8.4%. Spotify’s shares went below $155 before closing slightly above $152 on Thursday. The American stock market wasn’t alone. Yesterday, European stock markets hit their lowest levels in nearly 2 years. In the United Kingdom, the ... Full story

Claire’s considers UK store closures after calling in advisers

Claire’s could be the latest UK retailer to close stores after calling in advisers to assist with a potential restructuring. The accessories chain is believed to be considering a company voluntary arrangement (CVA), which would be used to cut under-performing branches and could put hundreds of jobs at risk. Claire's has more than 350 stores in the UK and dozens of concessions, according to its most recent accounts. The news comes as the brand’s ... Full story

Banks and insurers must plan for climate change risks, says Bank of England

Banks and insurance companies will be required to appoint a senior manager to take responsibility for protection from climate change risks under Bank of England plans announced today. The central bank’s prudential regulation authority (PRA) has laid out guidelines to ensure firms have a “credible plan or policies in place for managing exposures” to climate change. The PRA said board-level engagement was important and “scenario analysis” should ... Full story

Beer prices 'to soar' as global warming effects take hold, study says

Climate change threatens to cause a global crisis in beer supply, researchers have warned. The effects of global warming are likely to lead to a sharp fall in worldwide crop yields of barley – an essential ingredient. Scientists predict droughts and heatwaves could cause barley declines of up to 17 per cent in parts of Europe, Australia, Asia and the US where the grain is grown most. As a result, the cost of beer could soar. According to the ... Full story

Protect the Antarctic

The Antarctic Ocean is teeming with unique wildlife, but it's under threat from a warming climate and expanding industrial fishing. This year, we can change that - and create the largest protected area on earth. Will you join me and call for an Antarctic Sanctuary? Full story

401(k) tips to help you save more tax free

CLOSE. Hey Millennials, here's how being too conservative with your money could cost you in the future. CONNECT LINKEDIN EMAIL MORE. Is the retirement you want within reach? Participating in a 401(k) or other retirement plan is a great step – one that almost two-thirds of Americans take. But do your 401(k) habits stack up? Here are seven ways you may be winning at retirement planning – or seven opportunities for improvement:. Save more than 6 ... Full story