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Bloomberg Businessweek

Bloomberg Businessweek 7/31/2017

Each issue of Businessweek features in-depth perspectives on the financial markets, industries, trends, technology and people guiding the economy. Get the digital magazine subscription today and draw upon Businessweek's timely incisive analysis to help you make better decisions about your career, your business, and your personal investments.

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United States
Bloomberg Finance LP
50 Issues

in this issue

4 min
in brief

Asia ● India has built just 214,560 homes in the past two years, well off the pace necessary to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s stated target of 50 million by 2022. ▷ 35 ● Public support for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has plummeted to its lowest level since he took office. He’s been accused of cronyism for allegedly directing government backing to a veterinary college created by a close friend. Abe denies wrongdoing. ● A Vietnamese court sentenced blogger Tran Thi Nga to a nine-year prison term for “propaganda against the state” after she criticized the government’s handling of a toxic waste spill at the Formosa steel plant in Ha Tinh province. ● In as little as one year, North Korea could develop missiles able to reach the U.S., American intelligence agencies say. Previously,…

4 min
a low blow in the corn belt

“We’ve taken every opportunity to remind the president that the Corn Belt helped him win the election” As a presidential candidate, Donald Trump spent a lot of time currying the favor of the ethanol industry, barnstorming its rural Midwest base and repeatedly expressing his support for biofuels made from corn and soybeans. He was rewarded in November: Of the 184 counties with an ethanol plant in the U.S., 95 percent voted for Trump, according to data compiled by the Renewable Fuels Association. As president, Trump has continued to pledge that he’ll protect the Renewable Fuel Standard, the 2005 law that requires U.S. oil refineries to blend increasing amounts of ethanol and biodiesel into the nation’s fuel supply. In its 12-year history, the RFS has gained critics on both sides of the political…

4 min

For almost a half-century there’s been a clear speed limit on most commercial air travel: 660 miles per hour, the rate at which a typical-size plane traveling at 30,000 feet breaks the sound barrier and creates a 30-mile-wide, continuous sonic boom. The ground-level disturbances that result—shattered windows, cracked plaster, maddened farm animals—have kept supersonic travel mostly off-limits since 1973, when the Federal Aviation Administration banned its use over U.S. soil. That may be changing. In August, NASA says, it will begin taking bids for construction of a demo model of a plane able to reduce the sonic boom to something like the hum you’d hear inside a Mercedes-Benz on the interstate. The agency’s researchers say their design, a smaller-scale model of which was successfully tested in a wind tunnel at the…

4 min
st. louis loses favor with plaintiffs

“It’s going to be tougher for plaintiffs. … Judges are going to read the Supreme Court decision and force them back to where they came from” Quick trials, big verdicts favoring consumers, and a state law that allows nonresidents to easily join mass litigations made St. Louis a destination of choice for attorneys going after companies that do business nationwide. Those days may be over, and drugmakers such as Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and Johnson & Johnson couldn’t be more relieved. The U.S. Supreme Court in June struck a blow against so-called litigation tourism, ruling there has to be a connection between the forum and the specific claims at issue. In an 8-to-1 ruling, the top court said almost 600 people who claimed they were injured by the blood-thinning drug Plavix couldn’t sue…

1 min
miyabi knife

THE CHARACTERISTICS Miyabi makes its knives in Seki, the home of Japanese samurai-sword makers. The brand’s $280 chef’s knife—usually an 8-inch-long blade with a 5-inch handle—is a favorite among professionals, including Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, who endorses two Miyabi cutlery series. A scalpel-sharp blade is protected by 100 layers of stainless steel, forged into a Damascene pattern, that provide added durability. It’s immersed in liquid nitrogen, a strengthening technique known as cryogenic tempering, and hand-finished in the Honbazuke three-step method to give it a polished edge. The Karelian birch handle offers a beautiful, easy-to-grip surface. THE COMPETITION Miyabi is owned by Zwilling J.A. Henckels, a cutlery manufacturer based in Solingen, Germany. (Henckels also sells knives under its own name.) Its biggest Japanese competition, Shun, which is owned by Kai USA Ltd., sells similar…

6 min
“i am frequently asked ‘what country are you from’ (i grew up in brooklyn). i’ve been questioned about whether i really went to harvard (i did) or how i got in (i applied)” -edith cooper, head of human capital management at goldman sachs

Last year, Morgan Stanley held a company conversation on race in New York. Speaking on the panel was Mandell Crawley, now head of private wealth management at the bank, who recalled that when he worked on sales and trading desks, he was often the only African American. He told a story about traders expressing frustration by smashing phones. “In my early years I wouldn’t dare do that for fear of a long-held stereotype of the angry black man. And being 6-foot-5 doesn’t help,” said Crawley. “Now, it’s important to note I got over it, I’ve left many broken phones in my wake. But the reality is when people come here and you have to assimilate to an environment, and you feel like everything you do, people are sort of assessing you,…