- Although the official end does not come until tomorrow, Canada's 2800 troops in Afghanistan have begun to return hone.
- China's central bank raised interest rates another 25 basis points today, bringing the target one-year lending rate to 6.56% and the benchmark one-year deposit rate to 3.5%.
- The World Trade Organization has ruled that Chinese export quotas on nine minerals are a violation of agreements China made when it joined the WTO in 2001. The WTO now expects China to bring those exports into line with international requirements.
- The German parliament, despite having a standing policy of not selling arms to repressive states, is debating whether or not to sell 200 tanks to Saudi Arabia.
- The Japanese government has approved a second emergecy budget, this one for 2 trillion yen (about $24.7 billion)), which will be used to help fund new housing for the tens of thousands displaced by the earthquake/tsunami/nuclear meltdown, and to support businesses hurt by the disaster. The budget will be presented to parliament for approval later this month.
- Japan is getting ready to conduct safety tests on all 54 of it's nuclear reactors (only 19 of which are currently still operating).
- Moody's Investors Service has officially downgraded Portugal's sovereign debt rating to Ba2, a rating officially known as "non-investment grade" and unofficially known as 'junk". The ratings agency cited concerns that Portugal will not be able to meet its deficit reduction targets.
- The response of the European Commision to the Portuguese downgrade was to question the rationale for the downgrade, and to call for an end to "the oligopoly of the ratings agencies" and for measures to limit their influence.