Monday Briefing | December 14

Monday Briefing | December 14

Photo: Tesla and NIO face-off in a battle for electric vehicle dominance. (Courtesy of wccftech.com)

 

Stories to follow:

President-elect Joe Biden is slowly assembling his cabinet and team of advisors. Heads of state and diplomats around the world are analyzing the selections in an attempt to extract hints about the foreign policy direction of the United States. Some are assuming that Biden will adopt a foreign policy that closely resembles traditional American positions while others are asking whether Biden will retain some elements of the Trump approach to international relations. With Covid-19 still unchecked, save for some initial vaccine approvals, global leadership will be key in bringing a measure of stability back to the world stage. Questions about China, North Korea, climate change and the economy will grow louder before politicians leave Washington ahead of the holiday break. 

Electric vehicles are exciting consumers and investors all over the world. They offer drivers an opportunity to be climate conscious while retaining the convenience and freedom of a private vehicle. Investors are intrigued by the prospects of riding electric vehicle battery stocks for maximum gains. Below the surface, however, there are some related geopolitical concerns. Chinese companies are competing with Japanese and American automakers to secure a larger market share. There is a push in Congress to delist Chinese companies from U.S. exchanges because of lingering questions about financial transparency. Amid the U.S.-Sino trade disputes, any such measure is sure to have diplomatic and economic consequences as economies attempt to recover from the pandemic. 

Vaccine approvals began in earnest last week, and more are expected to follow. Approvals are only meaningful if there is a coordinated campaign to distribute and administer the injections. Until sufficient doses are available to achieve herd immunity, challenging ethical questions are facing municipal governments. Who should receive the initial doses? Will people have to prove their vaccination status before entering public buildings? Local and state governments will also be faced with populations who oppose vaccines or attempt to undercut their efficacy. Public health officials are careful to point out that infection mitigation efforts must continue until vaccines are widely distributed. 

Happening this week:

Many events have been altered in accordance with CDC recommendations, please carefully follow the guidelines for gatherings. In the meantime, this is a great opportunity to get outside, try ice-skating and prepare for a potential mid-week snow storm.

Don your masks and join the New York Jewish community for a small outdoor menorah lighting in celebration of Hanukkah.

Enjoy one of the many pandemic-inspired outdoor holiday light shows. Check out the link’s interactive map to find times, tickets, directions and social distancing requirements. 

This week in JPI:

Tehreem Nihar examines the tit-for-tat tariff war between China and the U.S., and how it’s affected the global economy. What President Trump hoped would miraculously create economic prosperity for the U.S. has instead slowed trade, GDP growth and manufacturing both at home and in China.

In your free time:

Is your gym still closed? Got cabin fever? Try these home work-outs to stay fit, healthy and happy.  

Keep your hands busy with this collection of adult arts and crafts, including holiday decorations. It might not be the holiday season you planned, but it can still be fun. 

Stressed about finals? Try some helpful tips to reduce stress and maximize performance.

This week’s Monday Briefing was brought to you by Daniel Shibley.

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