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Gov. Tiff Macklem walks outside Bank of Canada building in Ottawa.

REUTERS/Blair Gable

Are Canada & US headed toward soft landing?

Canada's annual inflation rate dropped more than expected to only 2.8% in June, the lowest figure since April 2021. That's good news, right? Well, it depends.

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Hard Numbers: US inflation cools down, Russian oil prices heat up, global hunger grows, Pakistan gets relief

3: Annual inflation in the US continues to fall, coming in at just 3% in June, the lowest rate in more than two years. Still, core inflation — which sets aside volatile costs for energy and food — is still at 4.8%, far above the Fed’s target of 2%.

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A trader works on the trading floor at the New York Stock Exchange.

REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

How’s the US economy doing right now?

If you’re a Republican, you probably think this is the worst economy in American history. If you’re a Democrat, chances are you at least rate it better than when Donald Trump was president.

But the truth is that even if your views weren’t colored by your partisan preferences, there’s enough conflicting data out there to confuse even the best, most apolitical economists.

Thankfully, I’m neither apolitical (I am nonpartisan) nor an economist (political scientists FTW), so if you ask me, I’d say the US economy is … pretty good.

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Fed chair Jerome Powell leaves after a news conference in Washington, DC.

REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein

The Fed's last rate hike of 2023?

On Wednesday, the US Federal Reserve will announce whether it'll further raise interest rates to tamp down inflation, which has eased in recent months yet remained at 5% in March, well above the 2% level that economists like. It's likely that the Fed will go for another 0.25 percentage point hike — taking interest rates to between 5% and 5.25%, the highest level in 16 years.

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Russian reservists recruited during a partial mobilization of troops attend a ceremony before departing to the Russia-Ukraine conflict zone, in the Rostov region, Russia October 31, 2022.

REUTERS/Sergey Pivovarov

What We're Watching: Russian draft goes online, abortion pill ruling, US inflation slows, Taiwan gets new presidential candidate, Biden bets big on EVs

Russia’s digital draft

If you’re a young male citizen of Russia, it just got harder for you to hide from the war in Ukraine. The State Duma, Russia’s parliament, approved legislation on Tuesday that allows the government to send a military summons online instead of serving the papers in person. The upper house swiftly passed it into law on Wednesday.

“The summons is considered received from the moment it is placed in the personal account of a person liable for military service,” explains the chairman of the Duma’s defense committee, though the Kremlin insists no large-scale draft is imminent. If the person summoned fails to report for service within 20 days of the date listed on the summons, the state can suspend his driver’s license, deny him the right to travel abroad, and make it impossible for him to get a loan.

The database that provides names of potential draftees is assembled from medical, educational, and residential records, as well as insurance and tax data. Thousands of young Russians have already fled their country. Many more may soon try to join them.

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North Korean leader Kim Jong Un with his daughter Kim Ju Ae at a banquet in Pyongyang, North Korea.

North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) via Reuters Connect

Hard Numbers: North Korea bans a name, US inflation stays warm, aid trucks cross into Syria, Ukrainians freeze sperm

0: The number of North Korean girls who are allowed to have the same name as Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un’s daughter Kim Ju-Ae is now, reportedly, zero. Young Ju Ae, who is thought to be around 11 years old, has recently been in the spotlight inspecting weapons with her dad and appearing on postage stamps.

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A man counts Lebanese pound banknotes at an exchange shop in Beirut, Lebanon.


Hard Numbers: Lebanon devalues lira even more, Adani calls off share sale, Fed slows hiking pace, radioactive capsule found in Oz, Philippines opens more bases to US

90: Lebanon has devalued its currency by — wait for it — 90% as a condition for securing an IMF bailout for what remains of the country's battered economy. Although the central bank says this is a first step toward unifying the multiple exchange rates the Lebanese people use for different transactions, the new official value of the lira is still far above the black market rate that most people actually pay.

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Hordes of shoppers throng the Macy's Herald Square flagship store in New York on Black Friday.

Levine-Roberts/Sipa USA via Reuters Connect

Exclusive polling data: Is inflation turning Americans into Grinches?

We’re excited to unveil a new exclusive polling partnership with the survey firm Maru Public Opinion. First up: How much are Americans reaching for their wallets this holiday season?


'Tis the season for gingerbread, gelt, and glee. But after a year of unwinding from pandemic-related supply chain issues amid four-decade-high inflation and a war in Ukraine, just how festive are we feeling with our pocketbooks?

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