Quest: New tensions on aged fault lines

Quest’s Profitable Moment

Many of the world’s most intractable problems rose up again this week — for totally new (plus some would say, unnecessary) factors.

Take a look at the issue of Northern Ireland and how exactly to maintain an open southern border with the Irish republic, post Brexit. The failing of the U.K. and EU to acknowledge a solution suitable to all parties threatens to dash Theresa May’s hopes of shifting the EU negotiations in the new season. This uncertainty over the Irish issue and what this means for Brexit had taken its toll on the pound as many commentators stated there is no easy solution.

THE CENTER East is another geopolitical fault series. Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital possesses unleashed criticism and violence.

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Market volatility resurfaced due to investors watched all of this. There was a rotation out of technology stocks and into old industrials initially. But by week’s end, that rotation got rotated, with the Nasdaq bouncing back again. Perhaps we shouldn’t be too surprised. The finish of the year is normally nigh. Big tech stocks are seated on sizable gains which can be locked in while banks, industrials and energy companies offer more value.

I just desire that the outlook wasn’t so unclear and that there weren’t so many pitfalls ahead. Worries that many thought were cast aside could rise and bite back again once again.

Bitcoin’s blistering run continues

Bitcoin is offers topped $16,000, fueling fears of a bubble.

While it’s true presently there is an component of tulip mania here — even Venezuela wants to launch its own cryptocurrency — it’s worth noting that the Chicago Board Options Exchange, Chicago Mercantile Exchange and Nasdaq are launching bitcoin futures. That may attract more curiosity from institutional investors.

But bitcoin is very risky. A leading digital currency industry was just hacked. Banking institutions are warning regulators about fraud.

And there are worries about the environmental impact of experiencing massive info centers consuming a great deal of power to mine bitcoin.

— Paul R. La Monica

Venezuela’s woes worsen with new lawsuit

Venezuela has spent the past season sinking deeper into chaos. Now, China is arriving the heat to summarize 2017.

One of the country’s biggest state-owned companies has filed a lawsuit against Venezuela’s oil company, PDVSA, in U.S. court.

Sinopec is accusing PDVSA of breach of contract and conspiracy to defraud, and is requesting $23.7 million plus curiosity and damages.

It’s a headache — but the amount is finally small when compared to estimated $196 billion Venezuela owes in every.

— Julia Horowitz

Should Elon Musk merge Tesla with SpaceX?

Tesla’s stock has cooled lately due to concerns about Model 3 development delays and integration risks with SolarCity. But Morgan Stanley includes a suggestion for Elon Musk: Merge with privately kept SpaceX, which Musk also runs.

The rocket marketplace could possibly be bigger than electric vehicles. Additionally, there is less competition. But will Musk run the risk of having too many balls in the air?

Tesla is also working on a Semi truck — which beer king Anheuser-Busch just put a big order for — and Musk’s The Boring Provider is proposing a fresh underground tunnel system for LA. When does Musk sleep?

— Paul R. La Monica

GE slashes careers as American icon shrinks

GE’s epic money crunch has been driven by negative bets on fossil fuels.

GE’s vitality division is bleeding because utilities are actually moving to renewables want solar. That’s agonizing for GE, making equipment that helps vitality one-third of the universe. Worse: GE just lately shelled out $9.5 billion on Alstom’s coal business.

Now, GE’s power business is slashing 12,000 jobs to spend less and stabilize the depressed stock price. Germany’s Siemens similarly cut practically 7,000 jobs, mostly in its power business. The problem for these companies is the migration from fossil fuels may just increase as renewables obtain cheaper.

— Matt Egan

Quick takes

Coal CEO loves Trump but hates Senate tax overhaul. ‘It wipes us out’

More alleged shady business at Wells Fargo: 1,500 fake plans

Naming and shaming tax shelters: EU fires off warning to 17 tax shelters

Accounting nightmare: European owner of Mattress Company crashes as CEO exits

Week of Brexit turmoil: UK doesn’t know very well what this means, costs or how exactly to do it

Saudi elite ensnared by corruption crackdown may escape — if they pay cash

What’s next

Time for the careers report: The U.S. unemployment price for November will come to be released Friday morning. Previous month, unemployment dropped to 4.1%, the cheapest price in 17 years.

Anticipating a rate hike: A rate hike is anticipated when the Federal government Reserve meets following Wednesday. Earlier this week, President Trump’s pick to displace Janet Yellen shifted a step closer to confirmation.

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