Geopolitical Risk Tracker>> Americas Fridays

GEOPOLITICAL RISK + GLOBAL MARKETS

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

GLOBAL RISK

There's a Limit to What Nationalism Can Do Our central debate no longer concerns big vs. small government, or traditionalism vs. progressivism on morals. -BloombergView

Instead it pits nationalism against globalism.

Fixing Fixed-Investment Incentives Still, some observers – and not just chronic pessimists – have countered that the evidence remains anecdotal, and that it is impossible to predict how long the current economic moment will last. -Project Syndicate

As Arctic Ice Vanishes, New Shipping Routes Open The changing conditions offer an opening to shipping companies. The Arctic is potentially a faster, more direct route between Asia and ports in Europe and eastern North America. -NYT

U.S. RISK

Trump goes soft on Saudi It’s just the latest example of how Trump—who will continue to Israel and then the Vatican—is largely shelving his incendiary campaign views about the world in favor of more traditional diplomacy. -Politico

The U.S.-China 50 Meet the people powering the world's most complex and consequential relationship. -FP

 Why Trump’s Budding Bromance With Xi Is Doomed -NYT

 6 policies Congress hid in the new spending bill -Politico

1. More immigrant workers.

2. Protections for medical marijuana

3. An emergency fund for infectious diseases

4. More visas for Afghans

5. A new front against Russia

6. "Golden" crabs

The Military Debate We Need The Pentagon received an extra $15 billion in the spending bill that will keep the government open through September. To put it in perspective, that’s 1.5 percent of the pool of about $1 trillion that funds the Pentagon and the rest of the national defense. -BloombergView

Stephen Vaughn, the Hamiltonian at USTR Vaughn, the current acting U.S. Trade Representative, is a trade lawyer who shares Trump's distaste for recent U.S. trade policy. Vaughn, has echoed many of Trump’s complaints about how past U.S. trade policy has eroded the nation's manufacturing base. -Politico

How Mexico’s Unions Sell Out Autoworkers The German automaker had unwrapped its own gift two days earlier, a labor contract signed by a representative from the state chapter of the Confederación de Trabajadores de México (CTM), the country’s largest union confederation, and notarized by a Labor Ministry official. -Bloomberg

AMERICAS

Mexico, Canada seek U.S. soft spots to bolster NAFTA defense From launching a data-mining drive aiming to find supply-chain pressure points to sending officials to mobilize allies in key U.S. states, Mexico and Canada are bolstering their defenses of a regional trade pact President Donald Trump vows to rewrite. -Reuters

How Brazil’s political class came undone The messy business of governing Brazil, a country with 35 active political parties, has long taken place far from the symmetrical towers and domes of Congress that dominate the capital’s skyline. -The Washington Post

U.S.-AMERICAS || GLOBAL MARKETS IMPACT +

OPPORTUNITY

GLOBAL BUSINESS

GE CEO: Protectionism isn’t the answer -Washington Post

Apple Announces $1 Billion Fund to Create U.S. Jobs in Manufacturing In introducing the fund, Apple joined a growing list of companies that have said in recent months that they will add, promote or keep jobs — many of them related to manufacturing — in the United States. -NYT

Where US Manufacturing Jobs Really Went -Project Syndicate

Families of San Bernardino shooting sue Facebook, Google, Twitter -Reuters

Exclusive: Uber faces criminal probe over software used to evade authorities The U.S. Department of Justice has begun a criminal investigation into Uber Technologies Inc's use of a software tool that helped its drivers evade local transportation regulators, two sources familiar with the situation said. -Reuters

How to Protect Your Privacy as More Apps Harvest Your Data In the real world, your personal life is a private space. But in tech, your personal data is a ripe resource for businesses to harvest in their own interests. -NYT

The big winners from Trump’s business tax cut How a tiny slice of top earners would reap a windfall from a lower small-business tax rate. -Politico

Trump begins to put in place team to oversee banks President Trump has begun putting in place a new regulatory team for the banking industry, which his top advisers hope to leverage in their efforts to ease industry rules and make it easier for financial companies to lend money. -The Washington Post

GLOBAL MACRO

Markets Volatility Reaches 10-Year Lows Despite Geopolitical Risks, Trump -- Should Investors Worry? -TheStreet.com

PRECIOUS-Gold at 1-month low as dollar climbs, Fed holds rates -Reuters

Oil Collapses to $45 as U.S. Shale Output Confounds OPEC Cuts Oil slid below $45 a barrel for the first time since OPEC agreed to cut output in November as U.S. shale confounds the producer group’s attempts to prop up prices. -Bloomberg

Puerto Rico Drops Hammer on Creditors The island moved on Wednesday to start bankruptcy-like proceedings that will most likely foist bigger losses on debt investors than they've been willing to accept. -BloombergGadfly