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Hard Numbers: Gaza truce breaks down, Germany looks to ease deportations, Eurozone inflation surprise, Meta busts fake Chinese Facebook accounts

Rockets are launched from the Gaza Strip into Israel, after a temporary truce between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas expired, as seen from Israel's border with Gaza in southern Israel, December 1, 2023

Rockets are launched from the Gaza Strip into Israel, after a temporary truce between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas expired, as seen from Israel's border with Gaza in southern Israel, December 1, 2023

REUTERS/Amir Cohen

7: The pause in fighting between Israel and Hamas collapsed after seven days, but Qatar says negotiations to implement a new pause are ongoing even as combat resumes. Israeli society was also rocked by a bombshell report indicating the government was aware of Hamas’ plan for an Oct. 7 style attack for over a year.

23: How hard is it to get 23 countries to agree on something? Ask the coalition of 23 OPEC+ countries, which are struggling to agree on how much crude oil production to cut to keep prices up in 2024. The deadlock has already forced the group to push back a meeting set for this weekend. One key question is whether production leaders Saudi Arabia and Russia will extend their current cuts into next year. Both countries are counting their halalahs/kopeks carefully – Riyadh is attempting a major overhaul of its economy while Moscow is financing its ongoing war in Ukraine.

40: The government of Germany, the EU member that takes on the largest number of migrants, has proposed a new law including more than 40 measures that would make it easier to deport asylum-seekers. View from the far right (AfD Party): “only brings tiny micro changes.” View from the left (Green Party): “a massive encroachment on fundamental rights.”

4,700: Meta is seeing a surge in fake and misleading Facebook accounts based in China ahead of America’s 2024 elections. Facebook’s parent company wrote in a recent quarterly threat report that they foiled a network of more than 4,700 China-based accounts that were posing as Americans while spreading polarizing content about American politics and US/China relations. China is now the third-largest home of such fake accounts, behind Russia and Iran.

2.4: The EU says annual inflation across the Eurozone will come in at 2.4%, down half a point since October, a faster drop than markets expected. Importantly, the new mark is getting closer to the European Central Bank’s 2% inflation target, showing that the bank’s interest rate hikes since July 2022 are working to tamp down inflation, even as they also raise concerns about slowing economic growth.

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