Month: July 2023

Bolivia Is the Latest South American Nation to Use China’s Yuan for Trade in Challenge to the Dollar

LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Bolivia is now using the yuan to pay for imports and exports, becoming the latest country in South America to regularly use the Chinese currency in a small but growing challenge to the hegemony of the U.S. dollar for international financial transactions in the region.

Between May and July of this year, Bolivia conducted financial operations amounting to 278 million Chinese yuan ($38.7 million), which accounts for 10% of its foreign trade during that period, Economy Minister Marcelo Montenegro said on Thursday.

“We’re already using the yuan. It’s a reality and a good start,” Montenegro said during a news conference. “Banana, zinc, and wood manufacturing exporters are conducting transactions in yuan, as well as importers of vehicles and capital goods.” These electronic transactions are carried out through the state-owned Banco Unión.

“The amount being used in yuan is still relatively small, but it will increase over time,” Montenegro said.

With these transactions, Bolivia joins other countries in South America, most notably Brazil and Argentina, which are using the yuan. The three countries are ruled by leftist or left-leaning governments.

Political Cartoons

In Latin America and the Caribbean, the use of the yuan is growing especially “in those countries that are looking to establish stronger ties with China, that view themselves as in some way politically aligned on this particular objective on decreasing their overall reliance on the dollar and on the U.S. in general,” said Margaret Myers, director of the Asia & Latin America Program at the Washington-based Inter-American Dialogue.

The use of the yuan comes at a time when China’s footprint in the region is increasing with rising trade and investment.

“There is a lot of anxiety in Washington about threats to the special role of the dollar in regions like Latin America,” Benjamin

Here’s why U.S. colleges are expensive

The average American saved $5,011 last year. That means it would take them about 75 years to save up enough cash to send one child to a top-rated US university.

College is really expensive. And it just keeps getting more expensive.

The average tuition at US private colleges grew by about 4% last year to just under $40,000 per year, according to data collected by US News & World Report. For a public in-state school, that cost was $10,500, that’s an annual increase of 0.8% for in-state students and about 1% for out-of-state.

But at highly rated or selective schools, the price tag increases substantially. Harvard University charges $57,246 in tuition and fees, per year, for undergraduate students. When you add in housing, food, books and other cost of living expenses, Harvard says you should expect to pay about $95,438 each year.

It wasn’t always this way. After adjusting for currency inflation, college tuition has increased 747.8% since 1963, the Education Data Initiative found.

And between 1980 and 2020, the average price of tuition, fees, room and board for an undergraduate degree increased by 169%, according to a report from the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce.

That far outpaces wage increases.

Over the same 40-year period, earnings for workers ages 22 to 27 only increased by 19%, the report found.

That might explain why Americans’ confidence in higher education has dropped to a record low, according to a Gallup poll released this week. The June poll found that just 36% of Americans have confidence in higher education, down more than 20 percentage points from eight years ago.

“While Gallup did not probe for reasons behind the recent drop in confidence, the rising costs of postsecondary education likely

Google, Meta Take on Trudeau in Proxy Fight Over Digital News Content

A law that props up the news industry has turned Canada into the latest battleground for global tech giants that are pushing back against governments trying to curb their dominance.

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(Bloomberg) — A law that props up the news industry has turned Canada into the latest battleground for global tech giants that are pushing back against governments trying to curb their dominance.

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UK business confidence remains strong as firms boost AI investment

UK businesses are optimistic about their prospects in the coming months, as they hope to see investments in new AI technology pay off. But confidence has still declined over the first half of the year – amid global uncertainty as economic growth remains sluggish around the world.

Accenture and S&P Global have polled 12,000 businesses across Europe, including 1,400 in the UK, to weigh up the expectations of firms for the immediate future. Despite inflation still being at historically high levels, an economic slowdown pervading across many large economies, and geo-political tensions still high around the world, companies are relatively optimistic.

At the end of 2022, the researchers had found business confidence in the UK to be its lowest since 2009 – a positive score of just 18%. Since the turn of the year, however, growing hype around the potential of AI technologies has boosted confidence significantly. In the first quarter of 2023, this saw net positivity of roughly 43% – higher than levels seen in 2019.

UK Business Activity expectations

Three months on, UK firms are still more confident about the future than their European counterparts, where optimism is net positive at 19%, while the global average is a 28% positive. However, there are signs that some hopes that AI investments could offset inflation concerns are fading, though. Positivity remains high – at 40% – but has declined by three points over the second quarter of 2023.

UK companies are currently more likely to plan for investments in AI. The rate has risen to 29% from 18% in early 2022 – with firms particularly keen to add AI capabilities over the coming year, linking this to a need to streamline costs, and a desire to combat wage inflation. But amid the hype, there are mounting concerns that AI may be presenting a bubble

Here’s what inflation’s slowdown has meant for US businesses

Washington, DC

American businesses are expected to fare better in the coming months, according to a survey of economists and analysts released Monday.

Inflation’s steady slowdown this year has boosted Americans’ confidence in the economy. It has also improved the odds of the Federal Reserve pulling off a so-called soft landing, or a scenario in which inflation returns to the central bank’s 2% target without pushing the economy off a cliff.

Americans haven’t felt this optimistic since September 2021, according to the University of Michigan’s latest Surveys of Consumers. US businesses have also grown more optimistic as hiring has become slightly easier and prices at the wholesale level have slowed.

A survey from the National Association for Business Economics released Monday showed that businesses have rejoiced in better economic conditions.

“Results of the July 2023 NABE Business Conditions Survey reflect an economy of rising sales and profits, as material costs decline and stabilizing wages prove less challenging,” said NABE president Julia Coronado in a release.

The latest survey showed that the percentage of respondents reporting rising sales continued to outpace the share reporting falling sales, with the index edging up to 33 from 30 over the past three months.

Meanwhile, a majority of respondents reported that wages at their firms were unchanged — the first time more economists reported no wage gains than rising wages since 2021.

And the net share of respondents reporting better profit margins rose to 0, which was “the first non-negative result after four consecutive surveys.”

The newfound optimism reflected in a number of sentiment surveys comes amid slowing inflation and a resilient job market.

The Consumer Price Index rose 3% in June, a much slower pace than the four-decade high of 9.1% in June 2022. Employers added a robust 209,000 jobs last month,

Nut Techy Launches “Computing Power Investment” to Boost Business Market Value and User Base

SINGAPORE – Media OutReach – 26 July 2023 – Recently, well-known computing power operator Nut Techy launched a new business called “Computing Power Investment,” which is expected to bring a new direction to Web3. Nut Techy, a well-known computing power operator headquartered in Singapore, has achieved significant milestones in the past year, including reaching a market value of billions and acquiring over ten million users.
“Computing Power Investment” is one of Nut Techy’s new businesses, and according to Jack, one of the company’s founders, users can participate in various investment opportunities through investment in computing power to gain profits. This measure is expected to expand the company’s profit model and provide new investment options for customers, ultimately contributing to the company’s growth.
Nut Techy’s impressive achievements over the past year are a result of the company’s continuous efforts in technology innovation and user experience. The “Computing Power Investment” business has become a significant source of revenue for Nut Techy’s customers, and the company is confident that it can maintain its position as a leading player in the market through its commitment to providing high-quality services and creating value for investors.
Nut Techy Expands into “Computing Power Investment” Market to Strengthen Position in Web3 Industry.
Nut Techy is expanding its market share this year and aiming to become one of the world’s leading companies in the global Web3 market. Nut Techy believes that Web3 technology can provide more innovative investment experiences for customers and is committed to investing in technology R&D and market promotion to achieve this goal.
Nut Techy’s development showcases the potential and innovation of Web3, and as a multi-domain digital entertainment ecosystem, the company continues to push Web3 forward by providing interesting, safe, and innovative digital entertainment experiences to users.
Hashtag: #NutTechy

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76% of corporate leaders say Japan’s economy is ‘expanding’

Business confidence has dramatically improved after COVID-19 was downgraded to the equivalent of seasonal flu.

An Asahi Shimbun survey of business sentiment among 100 major companies nationwide found that 76 viewed the domestic economy as “expanding” or “gradually expanding.”

The finding represents an increase of 30 companies from the previous survey last November.

Many corporate leaders are optimistic that economic activity and personal consumption are on the rise now that the novel coronavirus has lost its scare factor.

However, concerns remain about labor shortages and a slowdown in overseas economies that could impact Japan.

The Asahi Shimbun conducted the survey from July 3 to 14.

Seventy-five companies responded that the domestic economy is “gradually expanding.” One company said it is “expanding.”

Twenty-two companies viewed the economy as “at a standstill.” The figure was half that of the previous survey late last year.

When asked to choose up to two reasons for their assessment, most companies, 71, cited “personal consumption.”

Asked about the prospects for personal consumption over the next three months, 74 companies expected a “gradual recovery,” up from 44 in the previous survey.

“The mindset of consumers toward spending has improved,” said Taro Fujie, president of Ajinomoto Co. “We are at the beginning of a cycle where wage increases are linked to appropriate price hikes.”

Chiharu Fujioka, managing officer of Mitsui Fudosan Co., noted that hotel occupancy rates exceeded 80 percent, and that “the average daily rate is higher than in 2019 before the pandemic.”

In addition to the easing of pandemic-related restrictions on social activities, the influx of foreign visitors following the lifting of entry curbs is a positive factor.

Tatsuya Yoshimoto, president of J. Front Retailing Co., said that along with an increase in domestic travelers and foreign tourists, “customer numbers and sales at department

Russia Buy Now Pay Later Business and Investment Opportunities: 2023 Update

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Russian Buy Now Pay Later Market

Russian Buy Now Pay Later Market

Russian Buy Now Pay Later Market

Dublin, July 26, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The “Russia Buy Now Pay Later Business and Investment Opportunities Databook – 75+ KPIs on BNPL Market Size, End-Use Sectors, Market Share, Product Analysis, Business Model, Demographics – Q1 2023 Update” report has been added to’s offering.

The BNPL payment industry in Russia has recorded strong growth over the last four quarters, supported by increased ecommerce penetration.

BNPL payments in the country are expected to grow by 23.3% on an annual basis to reach US$6,784.5 million in 2023.

Medium to long term growth story of BNPL industry in Russia remains strong. BNPL payment adoption is expected to grow steadily over the forecast period, recording a CAGR of 12.6% during 2023-2028. The BNPL Gross Merchandise Value in the country will increase from US$5,500.8 million in 2022 to reach US$12,307.0 million by 2028.

This report provides a detailed data centric analysis of Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) industry, covering market opportunities and risks across a range of retail categories. With over 75 KPIs at country level, this report provides a comprehensive understanding of BNPL market dynamics, market size and forecast, and market share statistics.

It breaks down market opportunity by type of business model, sales channels (offline and online), and distribution models. In addition, it provides a snapshot of consumer behaviour and retail spend dynamics in Russia. KPIs in both value and volume term help in getting in-depth understanding of end market dynamics.

The research methodology is based on industry best practices. Its unbiased analysis leverages a proprietary analytics platform to offer a detailed view on emerging business and investment market opportunities.


This report provides in-depth, data-centric analysis of Buy Now Pay Later industry in Russia through 57 tables

American Airlines to make ‘accelerated’ distribution changes

The changes American Airlines this year began to make to its distribution strategy are having a measurable effect, according to the carrier. About 70 per cent to 75 per cent of the carrier’s revenue is now being booked through direct channels, American chief commercial officer Vasu Raja said during an earnings call on Thursday (20 July). And he anticipates that figure will grow.

“We are encouraged by this, and we actually are going to accelerate the changes,” Raja said.

“By the end of the year, 100 per cent of what we sell, customers will be able to service online through our app or our dot-com. We’ll roll out those features over time for new distribution technology. But as this happens, we’ll make increasingly less and less of our fare content available through traditional technology where customers are not able to get that quality experience they are looking for from us.”

American in April pulled as much as 40 per cent of its fares from EDIFACT channels, making them accessible only in New Distribution Capability channels.

Raja made those comments in the context of comparing booking trends among travellers who are members of its AAdvantage loyalty programme versus others, rather than comparing business with leisure customers. Non-members during the second quarter travelled 5 per cent less year over year, but revenue from that group grew by 5 per cent, he said. 

For loyalty members, transactions grew by 8 per cent and revenue grew 13 per cent.

“That is certainly above what we had expected,” Raja said, adding that not only do these loyalty member customers bring in additional revenue and come with a lower cost of sale but American also found that about “25 per cent to 30 per cent of calls through reservations are bookings a travel agency originated and

TikTok Launching E-Commerce Business Competing With Shein And Temu, Report Says


TikTok is expanding its empire and launching an e-commerce business to sell Chinese-made goods in the U.S., the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday, as the fast-growing social media app attempts to compete with other online shopping platforms like Shein and Temu.

Key Facts

Beginning in August, the social media platform will offer an Amazon-like marketplace called TikTok Shop Shopping Center, which will allow users to go to one place to view and buy goods, according to the Journal, which cited unnamed sources.

Everything from clothes to electronics will be manufactured and sold in China and then shipped to U.S. customers from both TikTok’s program and other retailers, with TikTok handling marketing and logistics, the Journal reported.

Chinese suppliers will only be paid by TikTok after finding U.S. buyers, and if items are unpopular the platform plans to return those items to the suppliers to avoid being stuck with inventory, people familiar with the matter told the Journal.

With the new platform, TikTok is aiming to increase the total transaction amount of goods on the platform from $5 billion last year to $20 billion this year, the paper reported.

Key Background

TikTok’s e-commerce business will soon have to compete with Temu and fast-fashion platform Shein, which have been offering online customers shockingly low prices and a wide variety of selection. Temu, a Boston-based Chinese-owned retailer, has seen increased success this year from a popular Super Bowl ad and TikTok exposure. Temu has claimed the way it keeps prices low is by “cutting out the middleman” by allowing Chinese vendors to sell directly to American buyers and shipping directly from China. Meanwhile, Chinese-based Shein has become one of the most popular clothing