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With the Labor Day holiday a fast-receding memory, the US presidential election campaign has begun in earnest with back-to-back appearances by Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. In what was widely seen as a preview of three formal debates beginning later this month, the two candidates set out their stalls as they responded to questions at a televised forum.

Mrs Clinton defended her record on sensitive emails and accused her opponent of being woefully inexperienced in international affairs. Never one to shy away from controversy, Mr Trump used the occasion to praise Russian leader Vladimir Putin as a better leader than Barack Obama. Mr Trump also called for a massive expansion of US military funding and said he would give his generals 30 days to develop a plan to destroy Isis. (NYT)

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In the news

Lamenting the headphone jack Apple revealed its latest iPhone, which has an improved camera and is water resistant but does not feature a headphone jack. The feature has been one of tech’s great survivors — the 3.5mm version dates to the 1960s. Critics took to social media to parody marketing chief Phil Schiller after he said that moving away from headphones took “courage”. Analysts think users will eventually get used to wireless listening. (FT, BBC)

Deadly legacy of US covert war haunts Laos President Barack Obama, who is this week paying the first visit by a sitting US president to Laos, spoke of his country’s “profound moral and humanitarian obligation” to help victims of wartime ordnance. The devastation wrought by such devices on Laotians in the years since the country was pounded by B-52 bombers in the 1960s and 1970s highlights how regional history complicates Washington’s attempted “pivot to Asia”. (FT)

Micro Focus to buy HPE unit in $9bn coup Micro Focus has agreed to buy the software arm of HP Enterprise in a deal that would rank as the largest takeover by a UK technology business of a foreign rival. (FT)

France terror investigation French police have arrested a second couple as they investigate the discovery earlier this week of a car packed with gas cylinders. The security forces suspect the Peugeot 607, which was parked close to Notre-Dame cathedral in Paris, was to be blown up in the popular tourist spot. They are searching for the daughter of the car’s owner, who is known to police for wanting to travel to Syria. (Reuters)

ASEAN investment spree Companies from members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations overtook their European counterparts in 2015 to become the biggest investors in the region by value for the first time in three years. (NAR)

It’s a big day for

Nintendo Shares leapt almost one-fifth after the Japanese company revealed that Super Mario, one of the world’s most famous game franchises, would make its way to the Apple iPhone. (FT)

Eurozone rates The ECB’s governing council meets on monetary policy, and President Mario Draghi is expected to stay the course on his stimulus package. Here are three things that could derail the eurozone’s recovery, according to economists at JPMorgan. (FT)

US-India relations US President Barack Obama will meet Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the Asean regional summit in Laos. (The Hindu)

Keep up with the important business, economic and political stories in the coming days with the FT’s weekahead.

Food for thought

Poll control in Russia During Vladimir Putin’s presidency Russia’s political system has been geared to preventing any change in power, and the Kremlin is working hard to ensure that elections later this month bolster the status quo — and its United Russia party — rather than bring about change. (FT)

Disappearance app A human rights group in Egypt has commissioned an app that allows Android phone users to covertly send messages to alert friends and rights groups if they are detained by police. The software, called iProject, was developed in response to a wave of forced disappearances of mostly young people by the country’s security forces. Rights campaigners say that a quick response to arrest could prevent people from being held incommunicado or transferred and “lost” in large facilities. (Guardian)

FT business book shortlist announced Six heavyweight books that tackle the world’s critical economic and management challenges — from the US productivity gap to persistent gender imbalances — feature on the shortlist for 2016 business book of the year. Check here for the final list. (FT)

Offset those after-work drinks New research suggests that 150 minutes of moderate exercise a week can mitigate the risks associated with drinking alcohol. The scientists behind the study believe that drinking alcohol and exercising share a similar metabolic pathway in the body but operate in opposing directions. Drinking is damaging but exercise is restorative. (Telegraph)

Supernits are coming Scientists have warned that head lice have now evolved to the point that they are resistant to all over-the-counter treatments. Rather like superbugs becoming immune to antibiotics, lice are developing a tolerance of the chemicals that have been used against them for decades. (The Times)

Video of the day

Martin Wolf on globalisation The FT columnist explains why globalisation has reached a plateau and what solutions can be put in place to rescue it. (FT)

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