Is China Slowing Down?


What is it?China’s growth in second quarter of 2018, compared to same period last year.

Why it’s important? This is lower from 6.8% GDP growth that China saw in the first quarter, and comes as it wages a trade war with US, its largest trading partner. The slowdown was likely caused by the efforts Chinese government has taken to keep a check on the growing debt in the corporate segment.

Tell me more: The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, OECD, had earlier warned that higher tariffs are likely to hurt emerging economies such as China and India compared to developed countries such as US.




What is it?The number of public sector banks in which India’s largest life insurer, Life Insurance Corporation of India holds more than 10% stake.

Why is it important?Corporation Bank, in which LIC has 13.03% stake tops the list now, but that will soon be overtaken by IDBI Bank. On Monday, LIC board approved purchase of 51% stake in IDBI Bank in which it has 10.82% stake.

Tell me more: The move is largely seen as a bailout of the bank struggling with bad loans to the tune of Rs 55,600 crore. The move will also help government bring down its stake in the bank to 50% from 86% at present, seemingly a disinvestment, but for the fact that the government also owns LIC.




What is it? The number of criminal cases filed by the police against Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), the country’s outgoing ruling party over election violations.

Why is it important? The move is seen as a meddling by the powerful Pakistani military with democratic process to favour former cricketer Imran Khan. Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party is competing with PML-N, and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) in the general election scheduled for July 25th.

Tell me more: Authorities have also opened a criminal investigation on PML-N members under anti-terrorism laws. The move was condemned by PPP leader and former president Asif Ali Zardari. Nawaz Sharif, who was convicted of corruption by Pakistani courts, was arrested last Friday.


5.2 million


What is it? The number of subscribers Netflix added globally in the quarter ending June, taking its total user base to 130.1 million

Why is it important? Its growth was about a million lower than what investors expected, and pushed the stock price down by 14%. As was the case with the last few quarters, the growth was primarily driven by non-US market, where it added 4.5 million subscribers, up 8% year on year.

Tell me more: In India, Netflix hopes to add 5 million subscribers in the coming quarter, on the back of the success of series such as Sacred Games. In India, it also faces stiff competition from other streaming services including Hotstar and  Amazon.




What is it?Number of children’s lives saved in Burkina Faso, a landlocked West African country, thanks to a mass radio campaign between 2012 and 2015 on medical treatment for malaria, pneumonia and diarrhoea, according to a new research.

Why is it important? This highlights the impact of a technology that has been around for close to 100 years; and raises questions on whether it can also be used in solving some of the problems intensified by new technologies such as internet and smartphones. Whatsapp, owned by Facebook, recently released ads in newspapers on its responsible use, after it was criticized for its role in the violence triggered by rumours. India has over 243 FM radio channels, but they are barred from broadcasting news.

Tell me more: The research on radio campaign in Burkina Faso revealed that diagnosis rate for the three diseases went up during the three years and across the areas compared to areas not covered by the campaign.

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