Stock markets have retreated again over worries of further US interest rate rises after the Federal Reserve defied Donald Trump to increase rates for the fourth time this year.

The EU has confirmed it is “actively investigating” a potential breach of its diplomatic communications network, following reports that secret cables had been stolen by hackers.

The Bank of England has welcomed a “crucial and positive” move by the EU to help keep a key part of the financial system functioning in the event of a “no-deal” Brexit.

A handful of banks will be forced to write multimillion pound cheques to buy shares in the construction giant Kier Group after some of its biggest investors snubbed the chance to take part in a £250m fundraising.

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is to merge its consumer healthcare unit with that of rival Pfizer, to create a new market leader with almost £10bn in annual sales.

 

Santander has been fined more than £30m for “serious failings” in processing the accounts of dead customers, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) says.

TECHNOLOGY

George Soros labels China’s use of AI to control citizens a ‘Mortal Threat’

George-Soros-labels-China’s-GBO

The billionaire philanthropist issued a warning on Thursday that advancements in the field of AI pose a “mortal threat” to humanity when they’re made by repressive regimes, according to The Financial Times

The 88-year-old, who made his money in the hedge fund industry, reportedly made his comments during a “provocative” speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos. 

While China is not the only authoritarian state in the world, it is the most powerful and technologically advanced, according to Soros.

“This makes [Chinese president] Xi Jinping the most dangerous opponent of open societies,” he said.

China is widely considered to be at the forefront of the AI race along with the US. Both countries are pumping billions of dollars into developing the technology in hopes that it will reap rewards down the line.

China’s social credit system, which is currently being rolled out across the country to determine the trustworthiness of each citizen, will “give Xi total control over the people,” stated Soros.

Soros, who famously bet against Sterling in the 1990s, said he wants to draw attention to the risk that China presents. 

“Since Xi is the most dangerous enemy of the open society, we must pin our hopes on the Chinese people, and especially on the business community and a political elite willing to uphold the Confucian tradition,” he said.

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