From smartphones to soybeans and toys to microchips, over $300bn worth of tariffs are due to come into effect starting tomorrow on a dizzying variety of US and Chinese goods. An 18-month battle over trade between Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping is convulsing the global technology industry, sending shockwaves through complex global supply chains that have grown up over decades – and creating a giant headache for some of the world’s biggest companies. In two weeks' time, when Tim Cook ascends a stage to unveil Apple’s newest iPhone, behind the scenes of a glitzy launch event some of the company’s biggest brains will be puzzling over how and where the devices will be made to minimise the impact... … [Read more...] about Trump’s trade war is undermining America’s technological supremacy
Cibc global technology fund
WannaCry malicious software has hit Britain’s National Health Service, some of Spain’s largest companies including Telefónica, as well as computers across Russia, the Ukraine and Taiwan, leading to PCs and data being locked up and held for ransom. The ransomware uses a vulnerability first revealed to the public as part of a leaked stash of NSA-related documents in order to infect Windows PCs and encrypt their contents, before demanding payments of hundreds of dollars for the key to decrypt files. The co-ordinated attack had managed to infect large numbers of computers across the health service less than six hours after it was first noticed by security researchers, in part due to its ability to spread within networks from PC to PC The ransomware has already caused hospitals across England to divert emergency patients – but what is it, how does it spread and why is this happening in the first place? What is ransomware? Ransomware is a particularly nasty type of … [Read more...] about What is WannaCry ransomware and why is it attacking global computers?
Global stock markets have ended 2017 on record highs, gaining $9tn (£6.7tn) in value over the year due to a strong worldwide economy, President Donald Trump’s tax cuts and central banks’ go-slow approach to easing financial support. The FTSE 100 hit a new peak in London, with an all-time closing high of 7687.77, having earlier hit a new all-time peak of 7697.62. The leading UK index was boosted by a late surge in mining stocks as commodity prices rose against a weaker dollar and optimism grew about the Chinese economy, leaving the index up 7.6% over the year. In global terms, the MSCI all-country world index gained 22% or $9tn on the year to an all-time high of 514.53. Even the rival attractions of bitcoin, up nearly 14 times over the year, and concerns about war with North Korea, political upheaval in Europe with the Catalan separatist movement in Spain and an inconclusive German election failed to dampen the party mood. Craig James, chief economist at Sydney-based … [Read more...] about Global markets end on record high after adding $9tn in 2017
The International Monetary Fund blamed bitter trade tensions and a manufacturing slump for a global downturn on Tuesday as it slashed growth forecasts to the lowest level since the financial crisis. The global lender’s latest World Economic Outlook added that prospects are “precarious". And in an apparent dig at the White House's crackdown on trade with China, the fund warned central bankers are running out of ammunition to fix policy “mistakes”. Compared to its July update, the IMF cut growth estimates from 3.2pc to 3pc for this year - the lowest for a decade - although it expects a slight bounceback to growth of 3.4pc in 2020. UK growth estimates meanwhile were cut to 1.2pc from 1.3pc three... … [Read more...] about IMF fires warning on trade war as manufacturing pain hits global growth
The NHS is working to bring its systems back online after it became the highest-profile victim of a global ransomware attack and faced renewed concern about the strength of its infrastructure. The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) said teams were “working round the clock” in response to the attack, which resulted in operations being cancelled, ambulances being diverted and documents such as patient records made unavailable in England and Scotland. Computers at hospitals and GPs surgeries in the UK were among tens of thousands hit in almost 100 countries by malware that appeared to be using technology stolen from the National Security Agency in the US. It blocks access to any files on a PC until a ransom is paid. The British prime minister, Theresa May, and NHS Digital said they were not aware of any evidence patient records had been compromised in Friday’s attack, which is thought to have affected computers in nearly 100 countries. May said: “This is not … [Read more...] about NHS seeks to recover from global cyber-attack as security concerns resurface