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Just over one week to go until the UK election and the polls are narrowing, suggesting a hung parliament and knocking back sterling. The leader of Britain’s opposition Labour party, Jeremy Corbyn, has had a good run on the campaign trail (until a stumble this week on the radio). That may be why Theresa May, the prime minister, set the tone for the final phase of the general election campaign with her strongest personal attack on Mr Corbyn.
Meanwhile in France, new polls suggest Emmanuel Macron’s cross-party movement, La République En Marche, could attract 30 per cent of the vote in the first round of the election on June 11 — putting the party within reach of winning an absolute majority in the run-off round on June 18. (FT, Guardian)
In the news
UN chief urges Trump to keep US in Paris climate accord
The UN secretary-general urged President Donald Trump to keep the US in the Paris climate agreement, warning that withdrawal could undermine US national security and the economy. Mr Trump has been strongly critical of the deal and has said he will make his “final decision on the Paris accord” this week. (FT)
Scores killed in Kabul bomb
A car bomb ripped through the diplomatic area of Kabul, killing at least 80 people and wounding hundreds, Afghan health officials said. The attack in such a heavily fortified area highlights the challenge facing Afghan authorities in providing security in the capital after a reduced US presence. (FT)
The head of the European Space Agency has a short-term solution for UK companies that want to to be involved in multibillion-dollar European space programmes after Brexit: set up EU subsidiaries. (FT)
Where’s the beef (from)?
The official revival of US beef exports to China, as opposed to “grey market” imports from Hong Kong, has big producers such as Tyson licking its lips. Rising Chinese incomes are boosting meat consumption while relatively inefficient domestic producers are struggling to keep up with demand. (FT)
Amazon is doing grand
The ecommerce company’s breach of the $1,000-a-share level on Tuesday highlights how technology stocks have electrified this year’s US stock market rally, displacing the so-called Trump trade. (FT)
Men missing after China probe into Ivanka Trump brands
A labour activist researching working conditions in a Chinese factory that makes shoes for Ivanka Trump’s label has been detained by police, while two others have gone missing and are presumed also to have been detained. (AP)
The day ahead
Economic data from the EU and India
Strong employment data from the eurozone confirmed a cyclical recovery that seems to be going from strength to strength while India’s GDP for the first three months of the year is expected to show it remains the fastest growing major economy. (FT, Forbes)
Keep up with the important business, economic and political stories in the coming days with the FT’s Week Ahead.
What we’re reading
After Brexit: Let the haggling begin
FT research reveals that at least 759 agreements with 168 countries must be renegotiated just for the UK to maintain the status quo post-Brexit. There’s a long road ahead. (FT)
The rise and fall of Toronto’s classiest conman
Meet James Regan, who swindled his way through the city’s moneyed classes — but does he believe his own tall tales? (The Walrus)
Korea opportunity for used Japanese batteries
Imminent new rules on the disposal of hazardous waste have led to South Korean recyclers snapping up old car and motorcycle batteries from Japan for their lead content. (NAR)
Death of a dictator
Manuel Noriega, the former ruler of Panama who was a double agent for the CIA and Fidel Castro, has died aged 83. A symbol of US-backed leaders seen as buffers against communism through the 1980s, he was arrested with the help of loud rock music in 1989 during Operation Just Cause and imprisoned for drug trafficking. (FT, NYT)
What is covfefe?
A late night tweet from President Trump left the mistype ‘covfefe’ hanging in the air, — prompting an all-night comedy fest on Twitter as users speculated on its meaning. Had the president inadvertently revealed his computer password — or even worse — the nuclear launch codes? (Guardian).
Video of the day
Masters of Science: Can neuroscience stop counterfeiting?
David Eagleman explains why understanding the brain is key to tackling forgery.
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