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Monday, April 11, 2011

World News

Ivory Coast
  • Japan experienced a 7.1 magnitude aftershock[1] last night, with the epicenter in Fukushima prefecture and a depth of 10 km.  It occurred shortly after a minute of silence observed by the nation to remember the 28,000 missing or dead in the March 11 earthquake.
  • Following last nights 7.1 magnitude aftershock, the Japanese government has decided to widen the evacuation zone around the Fukushima nuclear plant to 20 km.  Also, villages and towns outside the evacuation zone with more accumulated radiation will be evacuated, and children, pregnant women, and hospitalized patients should stay out of some areas between 20 and 30 km from the site.  For what it is worth, TEPCO President Masataka Shimizu has publically stated that he "would like to deeply apologize again for causing physical and psychological hardships to people of Fukushima prefecture and near the nuclear plant."
United States
  • NYSE Euronext has rejected a joint purchase bid from Nasdaq OMX Group and IntercontinentalExchange, preferring the $10.2 billion merger offer from Deutsche Boerse.  In the kind of schoolyard interplay that happens when an offer is rejected, Robert Greifeld, CEO of Nasdaq, is saying "The feedback we have received from NYSE Euronext stock holders is very positive, and we would expect NYSE Euronext would, at the very least, meet with us and our advisors to discuss the merits of the proposed combination."  Meanwhile, Duncan Niederauer, CEO of NYSE Euronext, is responding with "It's hard to call it an offer because it's a loosely worded proposal that was, in our minds, an empty vessel....  We had a strategy.  The combination with Deutsche Boerse is consistent with that strategy.  A dismantling of the company is not.  End of story."
  • The Congress passed a continuing resolution on Friday to fund the US government for another week.  Now, President Obama will offer a deficit reduction plan on Wednesday, and both parties will squabble over what and whether to cut.
  • The US Office of naval Research has successfully tested a high-energy laser[2] by disabling a boat off the coast of California.
[1]  Yes, another one.  They just can't catch a brake, can they?
[2]  High-energy laser, abbreviated HEL.  In other words, we can expect to hear about the Navy using HELguns, unleashing HEL, and so forth.

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