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Recap January 16: Most Catastrophic Year USA, Water War begins, Blackouts Start Worldwide (Recap ep158)

In this week’s Recap, Marcello talks about the economic drawbacks that the USA has been dealing with; A conflict about water between two states of US might be the first sign of a water war; Buenos Aires and Berlin were left without electricity amid high temperatures and a rising winter.

About 90K households in eastern part of Berlin, Germany for hours on Sunday evening were without heating & warm water; with outside temperatures of about 3 degrees Celsius (37.4F). A brief power outage at the state’s own electricity network operator Stromnetz Berlin had paralyzed the Klingenberg thermal power station in the Rummelsburg district in the afternoon. The power plant owned by the company had to therefore shut down.
Argentina’s capital Buenos Aires was hit by a major power outage this week, that left 1000’s of homes without electricity amid a heat wave that has seen temperatures soar above 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit), some of the highest in the world. The power cut affected 700K in the Buenos Aires area. High temperatures are expected to continue throughout the week, with peaks close to 40°C.
The explosion in coronavirus cases globally also threatens to dampen consumer spending & growth just as the U.S. Fed is considering turning off the liquidity by ending bond buying & pushing through higher interest rates. It will be a difficult time for markets, addicted to endless cheap money. Tech & growth stocks are likely to tumble, as investors switch to banks & energy firms.
On Monday, Bitcoin dropped below $40,000, its lowest level since early August. Although the digital asset then later regained a bit, it is still seeing some heavy losses in 2022, dropping some -9.89%. Bitcoin was last trading between $41K & $42K per token. Bitcoin prices are down over 40%, since reaching an all-time high in early November.
A report from blockchain analysis company Chainalysis states that North Korean hackers stole almost $400m worth of digital assets in at least 7 attacks on cryptocurrency platforms in 2021. The attacks mainly targeted investment firms & centralized exchanges. From 2020 to 2021, the number of North Korean-linked hacks jumped from 4 to 7, & the value extracted from these hacks grew by +40%. North Korea has routinely denied being involved in hack attacks attributed to them.
Australia has equaled its hottest day on record after a remote coastal town reported temperatures of 50.7°C (123.26°F). The temperature in Onslow, Western Australia, on Thursday matched a record set in 1962 in South Australia. Onslow & the surrounding areas could see records broken again, with temperatures set to rise slightly on Friday. It comes following Western Australia reporting large bushfires in December. One fire near Margaret River, scorched through over 6,000 hectares (14826 acres) of land, forcing evacuations.

Japan and Australia sign reciprocal access agreement; Erdogan says he will adjust to Turkey’s high inflation; The omicron is the dominant variant in the world; Growth forecasts for 2022 foresee an overall slowdown.

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