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The Bank of Japan has launched new kind of monetary easing in its fight against deflation. Governor Haruhiko Kuroda announced on Wednesday that the bank had set a cap of zero on 10-year bond yields. In a departure for global monetary policy it also pledged to overshoot its 2 per cent inflation target by buying assets until inflation increases — and stays — above the price stability target of 2 per cent.
The decision shows that even eight years after the financial crisis, central bankers are trying new monetary policy tools as they struggle to escape from low inflation.
Japan has been trying to raise inflation over the past three years, with headline rates running at minus 0.4 per cent in July. (FT, NAR)
In the news
Lula to stand trial Brazil’s popular former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva will stand trial for corruption after a judge agreed to rule on prosecutors’ claims that he received more than $1m as the alleged mastermind of the country’s largest bribery and kickback scheme. (FT)
US accuses Russia The US has accused Russia of bombing an aid convoy in Syria. UN officials say the attack — which UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called “sickening, savage and apparently deliberate”, is a potential war crime. Twenty humanitarian workers were killed in the strike and the UN has suspended aid convoys in Syria. Moscow refutes the accusations and claims trucks in the convoy caught fire. (Guardian)
Rahami’s dry run A journal found on Ahmad Khan Rahami, who is accused of setting off bombs in Manhattan over the weekend, revealed that he had been planning his attack since June and carried out a practice run days before it took place. The information came as it was revealed that the father of the Afghan-born 28 year-old contacted the FBI two years ago over fears that his son had become radicalised. (NYT)
New ‘Google’ tax targets 100 multinationals Almost 100 big companies have emerged as targets of a new tax aimed at multinationals that “go to extraordinary lengths” to avoid paying money to HM Revenue & Customs. HMRC said the scope of the “diverted profits” tax, which targets contrived arrangements that shift profits to lower tax countries, had taken some large companies by surprise. (FT)
The fight against ‘superbugs’ The 193 countries of the UN have signed a landmark declaration to rid the world of drug-resistant infections or “superbugs” in a move that experts say could prevent 700,000 deaths a year. It is only the fourth time a UN declaration has been reached on a health issue — following HIV in 2001, non-communicable diseases in 2011 and Ebola in 2013. (BBC)
It’s a big day for
Rate watchers The Fed will reveal monetary policy on Wednesday. Financial markets are placing a limited bet on a Fed rate rise. (FT)
Keep up with the important business, economic and political stories in the coming days with the FT’s Week Ahead.
Food for thought
Theresa May limbers up for a hard Brexit Martin Wolf on why the prime minister must mean what she says: “By ‘hard Brexit’ I mean a departure not only from the EU but also from the customs union and the single market. The UK should, however, end up with a free-trade arrangement that covers goods and possibly some parts of services and, one hopes, liberal travel arrangements.” (FT)
Trump v Clinton: Florida or bust The race may come down to the Sunshine State, and Clinton’s ability to turn out Hispanics versus Trump’s support among older white voters. (FT) Keep track of the 2016 race with our daily US politics newsletter. Sign up here.
UN speechifying It’s the annual meeting of the UN General Assembly, when heads of state take to the podium to address the world. The UN suggests 15 minutes is long enough to get the message across but some leaders far exceed the limit. Since 2010, the honour for the longest average talk goes to Barack Obama at 38 minutes. But the record goes to former Libyan strongman Muammer Gaddafi, who once spoke for one hour 36 minutes. (Economist)
The cost of war Since 2001 the US has spent nearly $5tn on conflict. A report by Boston university described the amount as “so large as to be almost incomprehensible”. Included in the calculations are interest on borrowing, the needs of future veterans and homeland security; not included are state and local government expenses or macroeconomic costs. (The Intercept)
Yellow is good Turmeric, the yellow spice used in Indian cooking, really does have health benefits according to a test devised by University College, London. There were positive changes in a gene associated with depression, asthma and cancer in volunteers who mixed turmeric powder into their food (but not those who took a turmeric supplement). (BBC)
Video of the day
Syrian ceasefire on brink of collapse The convoy attack was the latest sign that a US-Russian brokered truce to halt Syria’s five-and-a-half year war is failing. (FT)