Goldman banker, rate cut in Russia

NEW YORK (AP) — A former Goldman Sachs banker has been convicted of bribery and other corruption charges accusing him of participating in a $4.5 billion scheme to loot the Malaysian state investment fund, 1MDB. A jury found Roger Ng guilty on all counts on Friday in a US trial where jurors heard testimony about tens of millions of dollars in kickbacks and kickbacks. The embezzlement funded lavish spending on jewelry, art, superyacht and luxury real estate. Ng’s lawyers claimed he was becoming a “fall boy” for a senior Goldman banker who pleaded guilty and testified for the government.

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Food prices hit record highs following wartime disruption in Ukraine

ROME (AP) — The United Nations says prices for global foodstuffs like grains and vegetable oils have risen to their highest levels on record because of Russia’s war in Ukraine. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations said on Friday that its food price index, which tracks monthly changes in the international prices of a basket of basic commodities, averaged 159.3 points last month, up 12.6% from February. As it stands, the February index was the highest level since its inception in 1990. According to the FAO, the war in Ukraine is largely responsible for the 17.1% rise in grain prices , including wheat. Russia and Ukraine together account for about 30% and 20% of world wheat and maize exports, respectively.

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Russia cuts interest rates as ruble settles despite sanctions

LONDON (AP) — Russia’s central bank said it was lowering a key interest rate and said more cuts could be on the way. Friday’s central bank decision indicates it believes tight capital controls and other tough measures are stabilizing Russia’s currency and financial system despite heavy pressure from Western sanctions over the war in Ukraine. The bank said it cut its benchmark by 20% to 17%, effective Monday. He raised the rate by 9.5% on February 28, four days after the invasion, to support the falling ruble exchange rate. A currency crash would worsen already high inflation for Russian buyers by skyrocketing the cost of imported goods.

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President of a Russian metallurgical company calls for an investigation into Bucha

LONDON (AP) — The chairman of the board of Russian metals company Rusal has called for an investigation into events in the kyiv suburb of Bucha, where Ukrainian officials say Russian troops killed civilians . Rusal chairman Bernard Zonneveld did not specify who was responsible or say directly that anyone had been killed in Bucha, where Ukrainian forces and journalists discovered dozens of bodies on the streets and in mass graves. after the withdrawal of Russian troops. Zonneveld said Bucha’s reports “shocked us” and that “we support an objective and impartial investigation into this crime.” The statement stood out because Russian businesses have generally remained silent on the war amid a harsh crackdown on opposition by Russian authorities and state-controlled media narratives.

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UK airport warns COVID-related delays could last for months

LONDON (AP) — A major British airport is warning passengers to expect delays affecting travel to continue for months. The manager of Manchester Airport in north-west England said on Friday passengers could have to wait up to 90 minutes to pass through security “over the next few months”. Travelers to Britain have faced days of delays during the ongoing Easter holidays. British Airways and easyJet have canceled hundreds of flights due to coronavirus-related staff absences, and long queues have built up at airport check-in, security and baggage check-in. Britain’s aviation regulator has told the country’s airline industry that the issues ‘are not just distressing for affected consumers, but can impact confidence levels across the whole of Europe’. industry”.

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Germany offers aid to war-affected businesses in Ukraine

BERLIN (AP) — The German government has unveiled a package of loans and other financial aid to businesses hard hit by the war in Ukraine and sanctions against Russia. Economy Minister Robert Habeck said on Friday the package was necessary because “there are businesses and sectors which will not survive this period if we do not help them”. Separately, the government agreed late Thursday to provide states with 2 billion euros ($2.2 billion) to pay for housing, health care, schooling and other aid for Ukrainian refugees. A prominent Left Party lawmaker has called for more efforts to seize the wealth of Russian oligarchs in Germany to help pay the cost of the refugee influx.

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Musk says Tesla will build a vehicle designed to be a robotaxi

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the company will build a dedicated electric vehicle for use as a robotaxi. He also told a crowd at a party celebrating the opening of a factory in Texas that Tesla would start making three new vehicles next year. Musk didn’t elaborate on the robotaxi except to say it “will look pretty futuristic.” He said Tesla would start building the Cybertruck pickup at its new factory near Austin, Texas next year. After that, it will start making a new Roadster and a Semi-Electric. He made his remarks Thursday night at the “Cyber ​​Rodeo at Giga Texas,” an invitational party for thousands of guests at Tesla’s new, more than $1 billion factory.

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Wall Street drops to first week in four on rate worries

NEW YORK (AP) — Wall Street closed its first losing week in the past four with Friday up and down as investors brace for the Federal Reserve to tighten the brakes on the economy more aggressively to fight inflation. Big tech stocks like Microsoft and Apple once again led the market lower, and the S&P 500 fell 0.3% after lurching for much of the day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.4%, while weakness in tech stocks dragged the Nasdaq composite down 1.3%. Stocks fell as the Federal Reserve shifts more aggressively to fighting inflation by raising short-term interest rates and taking other measures.

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The S&P 500 fell 11.93 points, or 0.3%, to 4,488.28. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 137.55 points, or 0.4%, to 34,721.12. The Nasdaq fell 186.30 points, or 1.3%, to 13,711. The Russell 2000 Small Business Index slid 15.24 points, or 0.8%, to 1,994.56.

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