Hard Numbers: Hajj returns, Italy roasts, euro plunges, Ukraine appeal succeeds
1 million: More than one million pilgrims are expected in Mecca this week to perform the Hajj, an obligation for all Muslims at least once in their lifetimes. This is the first time since the onset of the pandemic Saudi authorities have allowed the annual event to take place.
30: The Italian government has declared a state of emergency in several northern parts of the country as a severe drought threatens more than 30% of Italy’s agricultural output. The dry spell is the region’s worst in 70 years.
20: The euro has fallen to a 20-year low against the US dollar. Amid mounting concerns about a European recession, many investors are ditching the euro for the greenback, especially since the US Fed’s interest rate hikes have made dollar assets more attractive.80: The UN’s $2.2 billion appeal for humanitarian aid for Ukraine is 80% funded thanks to what experts say has been an extraordinarily fast outpouring of help. Meanwhile, aid to other parts of the world is flagging — famine-wracked Somalia’s much smaller appeal has gotten just 30%.