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The new rules of business in a post-neoliberal world

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More than 40 years ago, the Reagan-Thatcher revolution was born. Taxes have been reduced. Unions were crushed. Markets were liberalized and global capital was unleashed. But the economic pendulum is swinging. And over the past couple of weeks, it has become quite clear that anything remotely related to downstream theory is now kryptonite politics.

The most obvious example is, of course, the backlash against British Prime Minister Liz Truss’ plan to cut taxes for the rich after massive spending on energy subsidies was announced. Aesthetics is now out of the question, and the leadership of the Prime Minister is in jeopardy.

But it is not only the United Kingdom that is facing the slope of neoliberalism. I recently met a senior Biden administration official who told me that many CEOs are now coming to Washington and asking for “a signal from the government – ​​where should we invest? Should we be in Vietnam or Mexico? What sectors do you want us in?”

While the government has yet to pick winners and losers, the White House has already made the transition into a post-neoliberal era — and much in the business community is preparing for that, too. CEOs may not like the idea of ​​a de-globalizing world with more regulation, greater state control and a growing workforce. But they can usually find a way to make money as long as they understand the rules of the market.

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So what are the new rules? The Biden administration recently put forward a file A clear outline of the economy you want, which included five main components. The first is empowering workers, which it sought to do by using federal budgets to support union action. Another is to take advantage of as much fiscal policy as possible in a polarized Congress to support families working in areas like health care and childcare, which are increasingly unsustainable for many Americans.

But as Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo Put it on me a few months agoGovernment must be more than cutting taxes and redistributing wealth. This administration wants to play a bigger role in guiding the supply side of the private sector. In particular, he wants to encourage making things, not just by pushing for “Buy American,” but by a more fundamental shift in policy focus from distribution to production.

This means industrial Policies. And while there is no crystal clear strategy in Washington, there are clear signs that the economics of laissez-faire is over.

One of these reasons is the fact that many companies will soon have to choose between the United States and China. The formal separation between the two countries is gaining momentum — a record number of American jobs have been relocated from China, and calls for stricter rules on technology transfer.

Another is that flexibility and redundancy in critical supply chains are more important than ever. Just a few days ago, Micron became the second large company (after Intel) to announce a major investment in semiconductors in the United States, pumping $100 billion into a new foundry in upstate New York.

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Federal investment in electric cars is also bringing new jobs to beleaguered parts of the South and Midwest. While a strong dollar could become a headwind to the administration’s hopes of increasing manufacturing and exports Economie, The lower cost of energy inputs in the United States compared to Europe at present is a tailwind.

Supporting economic “patriotism” is now the working principle on both sides of the political divide in Washington. Robert Lighthizer, the former US trade representative under Donald Trump, is famous for getting rid of the US trade deficit. But recently, California Democratic Congressman Ro Khanna – a rising figure in progressive circles – called for the same, calling for the US to run a trade surplus with the rest of the world by 2035.

In Khanna’s words, “The trade deficit in some years is fine, when balanced by the trade surpluses in other years. But the country has been running a persistent trade deficit since 1975.” He believes that the government should help correct this by providing loans interest-free for factories, and increased use of federal purchases to ensure markets.

I heard Khanna speak last week at the launch of Reimagining Economics, a Harvard Kennedy School initiative led by economists Dani Rodrik and Gordon Hanson. It aims to replace neoliberal policy models with something new and is one of many similar programs at major universities across the United States. Many of these institutions are vying to become a center of new economic thinking, just as the University of Chicago was a center of neoliberalism.

Khanna summed up the current challenge: “If we can’t get the economy right, we won’t have a multiethnic democracy.” This same formulation represents something new – in the past, conversations between racial equality and class inequality in the United States were separated. But Democrats are increasingly trying to tie the two together, as they work to find the contours of a post-neoliberal economy.

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This was the topic of another big party last week, sponsored by the Roosevelt Institute, where progressive politicians (many from within the administration) gathered to discuss the details of America’s industrial policy. While this isn’t entirely clear yet, there is one thing – it’s all the opposite of gradual downwards.

rana.foroohar@ft.com

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FirstFT: The FTC is flexing its muscles on the Microsoft-Activision deal

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good morning. This article is an in situ version of our website FirstFT the news. Subscribe to our site AsiaAnd the Europe/Africa or The Americas A release to send straight to your inbox every weekday morning

The US Federal Trade Commission will file a lawsuit to block Microsoft $75 billion acquisition of video game maker Activision Blizzard Because of concerns that the deal could hurt competitors to the Xbox consoles and cloud gaming business.

Deal, which was announced in JanuaryIt will be Microsoft’s largest acquisition ever and will make it the third largest game company by revenue, after China’s Tencent and Japan’s Sony.

But the Federal Trade Commission said yesterday that the deal would harm competition in the gaming sector, highlighting the fact that Activision is one of the few video game developers that produces and publishes the best video games for many devices such as PCs, consoles and mobile phones.

Microsoft moved to head off a regulatory backlash this week By signing a contract for 10 years To bring Call of dutythe blockbuster that brought in $30 billion in lifetime sales for Activision, has moved to Nintendo platforms instead of turning it into an Xbox exclusive.

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The measure is one of the biggest tests yet for Lena Khan, the chair of the Federal Trade Commission appointed by President Joe Biden, who has He vowed to crack down on Big Tech’s market power.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella hoped the deal would give the US software company a head start in the race to build the next version of the Internet and saw no reason for competition concerns when He spoke to the Financial Times in February.

“Even after this acquisition, we’ll be in third place with kind of a lower teen share[of the video games market]. . . “We’re going to be a bit of a player in a place that’s going to be very fragmented,” he said.

1. Pro-left appointed as Brazilian Finance Minister Luis Inacio Lula da Silva Fernando is expected to name HaddadThree well-informed sources reported that a loyalist from the left-wing Labor Party as Finance Minister today. The decision is likely to disappoint financial markets and reignite investor fears that the Lula administration, which takes office on January 1, will pursue a looser fiscal policy.

2. The US House of Representatives passes a defense bill worth $858 billion in financing weapons for Taiwan passed by the US House of Representatives A comprehensive defense spending bill of $858 billion That provides $10 billion in funding to provide arms to Taiwan as the country comes under increasing pressure from China. It is the first time that the US government has funded weapons for Taiwan.

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3. The United Kingdom, Japan and Italy agree to jointly build advanced combat aircraft The three countries will joint construction One of the most advanced combat aircraft in the world by 2035, to expand its defense capabilities to counter the growing threats from China and Russia. They will share development costs estimated at tens of billions of dollars.

A mock-up of the Tempest jet at the 2018 Farnborough Airshow
The UK and Italy’s Tempest fighter program will be integrated with Japan’s FX project © Peter Nicholls / Reuters

4. Airlines are feeling the pressure as charter groups raise rents Airlines return to profitability, but one cloud looms: Sharp increases in rental costs. More than half of the world’s commercial aircraft are owned or operated by leasing companies, and their fees are rising, which is another consequence of rising interest rates.

5. The Faustian agreement between Joe Biden and Russia to secure the release of Brittney Greener Brittney Griner’s release was greeted with joy from the basketball star’s family and supporters. But the exchange with Viktor Bout, a notorious arms dealer, drew criticism and raised questions about how America’s adversaries would deal with them. It may benefit from the arrest of its own citizens in the future.

How good is it to keep up with the news this week? Take our test.

Coming days

Economic data The US Department of Labor will update the Producer Price Index. The producer price index is expected to have risen 0.2 percent in November from the previous month, but the annual pace of wholesale inflation is expected to have eased to 7.2 percent, from 8 percent in October. The University of Michigan preliminary reading on consumer confidence is expected to have risen to 56.9 in December from 56.8 last month.

UK to launch financial services reforms Chancellor Jeremy Hunt would Unveil changeswhich include raising the ceiling on bankers’ bonuses and removing the requirement to separate risky investment banks from retail operations, in a speech in Edinburgh later in the day.

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Putin in Kyrgyzstan Russian President Vladimir Putin has arrived in Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan, to participate in the Eurasian Economic Union summit. The leaders are expected to discuss the establishment of a joint gas market and the establishment of an intergovernmental council in the field of energy. According to the Russian news agency TASS.

world Cup The quarter-final matches kick off in Qatar today, with Croatia playing Brazil in the first match, followed by the Netherlands and Argentina. Tomorrow, the surprising Moroccan team will meet Portugal at the start of the match, and England will meet France at a later time.

  • Read more: Simon Cooper, who grew up in the Netherlands, explains how the Dutch do it They abandon tradition under their coach Louis van Gaal in a bid to win the World Cup.

What else do we read?

Light needs to illuminate the black hole on dollar swaps An ordinary person might assume the dollar swap market It is a transparent angle of financing, given that the US currency underpins much of the global industry and these contracts are used by most of the major corporations and investment groups. Not so, writes Gillian Tate, as a recent report from the Bank for International Settlements shows.

Has inflation peaked? Central banks in the developed world have cautiously raised interest rates to curb demand and crush inflation this year, but, says the Financial Times editorial board, Now is not the time to hold back or cut back borrowing costs.

‘Hell. Hell: The War of Attrition on Bakhmut With Russia desperate for victory, wave after wave of infantry began Thrown in the city of Bakhmut on the front line In the Donetsk province, only to be cut down by the Ukrainian defenders. “They are just meat for Putin, and Bakhmut is a meat grinder,” said Kostyantyn, an exhausted Ukrainian machine gunner.

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Maps show that there was relatively little movement on the front line around Bakhmut

Why the price of oil has fallen despite new restrictions on Russian supply This week saw a pivotal moment in global geopolitics, as the European embargo and G7 cap on Russian crude oil prices came into effect. Within hours, supply disruptions set in as the piling up oil tankers queued up in the Bosphorus Strait. All of this would normally lead to a sharp rise in oil prices. However, yesterday they reached a new low of 2022. What is going on? Our energy editors explain.

It’s time to hunt down the dragons of the Asia Corporation I learned the hard way during years of managing Japanese equity portfolios, writes the Financial Times’ new investment columnist Stuart Kirk, the country’s corporate bosses were obsessed with market share, quality, innovation, culture and hard work. But did they sleep at night dreaming of my equity returns, Stewart asks, no they did not. That’s changing, he says, but local conditions are still very important.

the television

There are explosive royal TV shows out there, writes lead writer Henry Mance. But so far the new Netflix series Harry and Megan Not them. He argues that the Sussexes are both an ambitious couple and a cautionary tale about ambition.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex
Harry & Meghan is produced by the couple’s company Archewell © Courtesy Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex

Thank you for reading and remember that you can Add FirstFT to myFT. You can also choose to receive a FirstFT push notification every morning on the app. Send your recommendations and feedback to firstft@ft.com

Climate chart: an explanation – Learn about the most important weather data for the week. Participation over here

Long story short – The biggest and best-read stories in one smart email. Participation over here


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What is the ChatGPT policy?

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Rob Lonnie She claims to be a “left-liberal”. David Rosado I applied the political compass test He concluded that ChatGPT is a mixture of left and liberal leanings, eg: “anti-death penalty, pro-abortion, skeptical of free markets, corporations exploiting developing countries, more taxes for the rich, government subsidies, pro-benefits for those who refuse to work, Pro-immigration, sexual liberation, morality without religion, etc.”

Produce this image from the test results:

Rosado also ran several other political tests with largely similar results. However, I would like to stress a few different points. Most of all, I see ChatGPT as “pro-Western” in its perspective, while giving different visions of what this means. I also see ChatGPT as a “discord minimization”, for business reasons but also simply to want to get on with substantive work with a minimum of external fuss. I wouldn’t have built it myself So differently, and note that the bias may lie in the training data rather than any biases of the creators.

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Marc Andreessen has received a number of tweets suggesting that AI engines will host the “mother of battles” over content, censorship, bias, etc. – outside of the current battles on social media.

I agree.

I saw someone ask ChatGPT if Israel is an apartheid state (I can’t reproduce the answer because chat is now broken for me – unfortunately! But try for yourself.). Basically, ChatGPT answered no, that only South Africa was an apartheid country. Not many people will be unhappy with this answer, including many supporters of Israel (Israel’s moral defense, on the one hand, was not weighty enough for many tastes). Many Palestinians will object, for obvious reasons. And what about all those Rhodesians who suffered under their apartheid regime? Are they simply to be forgotten?

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When it comes to politics, the AI ​​engine simply cannot win, or even win a draw. However, there is no simple way to keep them out of politics either. By the way, if you get frustrated with ChatGPT wrapping your question, rephrase it in terms of asking them to write a dialogue or speech on a topic, in someone else’s voice or style. Often it will go further in this way.

The world has yet to realize how powerful ChatGPT is, and thus Open AI can still live in a kind of relative peace. I’m sorry to say that it won’t last long.

the post What is the ChatGPT policy? Debuted marginal revolution.

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China will launch SSE 50 stock index options trading from December 19th

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A Chinese national flag flies outside the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) building on Financial Street in Beijing, China on July 9, 2021. REUTERS/Tingshu Wang

BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s securities regulator on Friday approved the launch of China Financial Futures Exchange (LON:: 50) stock index options from December 19, the China Securities Regulatory Commission said in a statement on Friday.

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