TIME China

China’s Stock Market Crashes Again as Panicking Sellers Lose Faith

China Stock Market
Imaginechina/Corbis A Chinese investor looks at prices of shares at a stock brokerage house in Hangzhou city, China on July 23, 2015.

Beijing is struggling to rein in the self-preservation instincts of small investors

All that’s left to happen in China’s stock market is for government leaders to admit they are powerless to stop a selloff.

Monday’s panic selling was the latest example.

The Shanghai stock composite crashed by 8.5%, the equivalent of the Dow Jones industrial average shedding 1,500 points in a day, on little news and following more than a month of violent volatility.

The readiest explanation among analysts was that traders have lost faith that the government can slow the selling. Two and a half weeks ago the central government started enlisting $800 billion to prop up the market, Reuters estimated, and has since banned the largest shareholders of publicly traded companies from selling stock, restricted short selling, allowed 1,400 companies to stop trading, suspended IPOs, and encouraged banks to fund more share buybacks. Those measure all helped the Shanghai Composite to rise by 14% from its July 8 low-point through to the end of last week.

But the millions of individual investors in China’s markets—90 million at last count, more than the number of China Communist Party members—are much less likely to hue to the government’s wishes than the government would like. Monday’s sell-off seemed proof.

What effect China’s stock market swoon has on the general economy remains unclear: in contrast to many western economies, the stock market doesn’t act as a leading indicator of the economy as a whole, and the vast majority of household wealth is invested elsewhere.

Moody’s analysts wrote Monday that “indirect effects on consumer spending, employment and corporate investment will be similarly muted,” reflecting what has become a consensus view.

The Chinese market is dominated by small traders, many of them wealthy, and what happens in the stock market may be insulated from the real economy–or even from other local financial markets. For instance, the bond market was perfectly content Monday. As stocks crashed, the yield on China’s benchmark one-year bond fell by only .01 percentage point. In the U.S., where many investors consider the larger bond market to send smarter signals than the stock market, bond yields fall when there’s panic in the financial system, which can foreshadow a stock rout.

All the same, some of Wall Street’s biggest investors think that the sheer ugliness of what is happening could have serious ramifications further down the line.

“Because the forces on growth are coming from debt restructurings, economic restructurings and real estate and stock market bubbles bursting all at the same time, we are now seeing mutually reinforcing negative forces on growth,” hedge fund Bridgwater Associates LP wrote to investors last week in an abrupt change of mind on the country’s outlook.

China’s economy is slowing and industrial output is weak. So far, there’s no evidence that the rout in stocks will have a big effect on anyone who didn’t choose to gamble in them.

In theory, Beijing still has all the tools needed to ensure a soft landing as it transitions to a new growth model. But as Monday’s price action shows, fewer and fewer people seem to be taking that on trust.

This article originally appeared on Fortune.com

TIME Cycling

Tour de France Victory Marred By Doping Suggestions

Tour De France
Jean Catuffe—Getty Images Chris Froome of Great Britain and Team Sky (yellow jersey) leads Peter Sagan of Slovakia and Tinkoff-Saxo during stage twenty one of the 2015 Tour de France in Paris on July 26, 2015.

Spectators spat and threw urine at winner Chris Froome during the race

British cyclist Chris Froome’s win at this year’s Tour de France has been marred by suggestions of doping by a French scientist.

Pierre Sallet, a physiologist who heads the anti-doping agency Athletes for Transparency, first raised suspicions when he alleged that Froome’s performance in stage 10 of the race was abnormal. Froome won the stage and gained a time advantage over his rivals that they could not overcome in the remainder of the race.

Froome won his second Tour de France in three years on Sunday after three week’s of racing that culminated with a late fight-back by the Colombian Nairo Quintana. Just as when Froome first won in 2013, Quintana was runner-up, although the margin was much smaller this time.

Sallet told the BBC on Monday that despite having no physical evidence, what he estimated from Froome’s power-to-weight ratio showed an “abnormal profile.” But, he said he would would need more details, like Froome’s neurological profile and power outputs, to be sure.

“So to understand if it’s a unique profile or if it’s something else like doping, we need more details to understand,” said Sallet. “When people are suspicious around you, it’s my opinion, but the best answer is to give the details.”

Cyclists have been regarded with suspicion since the 7-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong admitted doping and was stripped of his titles. Froome, the winner of the Tour in 2013, has been abused by spectators during the race who have spat, made hand gestures and on one occasion threw urine at him. There is no evidence that he has engaged in doping and he denies it.

In an effort to satisfy critics, Froome’s team released their scientific data about the cyclist during the tenth stage.

Brian Cookson, the president of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), rejected Sallet’s scepticism. “I don’t accept that argument… clearly what sport is about is about exceptional performances from individuals who put up something incredible on the day for whatever reason, motivation, accident of nature, genetics and so on, ” Cookson told the BBC. “To suddenly say that everybody who puts up an exceptional performance must therefore be doping because other people did in the past, that’s a rather strange leap of faith to make.”

Cookson also told the BBC that he thought that Froome’s treatment by some spectators was “digusting and disgraceful” and individuals like Sallet shared responsibility for that. “I think they are making rather disingenuous justifications for their claims and frankly all they have been doing is damaging our sport and perhaps individuals within that sport,” he said.

To the amusement of many, Lance Armstrong shared his thoughts on Froome’s performance.

Read next: How Aging Affects Athletic Performance

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TIME Turkey

Turkey Carries Out Strikes Against ISIS and Kurdish Targets

Kurds Turkey ISIS Airstrikes
Wael Hamzeh—EPA Supporters of Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) living in Lebanon flash the V-sign during a protest against the Turkish air force attacks on the PKK military campaigns in Syria and northern Iraq, in front of the United Nation (ESCWA) in Beirut on July 26, 2015.

Four Kurdish fighters were allegedly wounded

(BEIRUT) —Turkish troops have shelled a Syrian village near the border, targeting Kurdish fighters who have been battling the Islamic State group with the aid of U.S.-led airstrikes, Syria’s main Kurdish militia and an activist group said Monday.

The Kurdish People’s Protection Units, or YPG, said the Sunday night shelling on the border village of Til Findire targeted one of their vehicles. It said Til Findire is east of the border town of Kobani, where the Kurds handed a major defeat to the Islamic State group earlier this year.

In cross-border strikes since Friday, Turkey has targeted both Kurdish fighters as well as the IS group, stepping up its involvement in Syria’s increasingly complex civil war. The Syrian Kurds are among the most effective ground forces battling the IS group, but Turkey fears they could revive an insurgency against Ankara in pursuit of an independent state.

On Monday the YPG and Syrian rebels captured the town of Sareen in northern Syria, which had been held by the Islamic State group, according to The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and the Aleppo Media Center in Syria, two activist groups that track the civil war.

A Turkish official said Turkish forces are only targeting the IS group in Syria and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, in neighboring Iraq.

The official said the “ongoing military operation seeks to neutralize imminent threats to Turkey’s national security and continues to target ISIS in Syria and the PKK in Iraq.”

“The PYD, along with others, remains outside the scope of the current military effort,” the official said, referring to the political arm of the YPG.

The official added that authorities were “investigating claims that the Turkish military engaged positions held by forces other than ISIS.”

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because of rules that bar officials from speaking to journalists without authorization.

The YPG did not say in its Monday statement whether there were casualties in the shelling.

The YPG said Turkey first shelled Til Findire on Friday, wounding four fighters of the rebel Free Syrian Army and several local villagers. It urged Turkey to “halt this aggression and to follow international guidelines.”

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said four fighters were wounded in the village of Zor Maghar, which is also close to the Turkish border. Conflicting reports are common in the aftermath of violent incidents.

Earlier this month, Syria’s main Kurdish party, the Democratic Union Party, or PYD, warned Turkey that any military intervention would threaten international peace and said its armed wing, the YPG, would face any “aggression.”

Turkish police meanwhile raided homes in a neighborhood in the capital on Monday, detaining at least 15 people suspected of links to the Islamic State group, the state-run news agency said.

The Anadolu Agency said those detained in Ankara’s Haci Bayram neighborhood include a number of foreign nationals. It did not give details of the foreigners’ home countries.

Turkey has been carrying out airstrikes against IS targets in Syria and Kurdish rebel positions in northern Iraq. It has also arrested hundreds of people with suspected links to violent extremists.

On Sunday, it called for a meeting of its NATO allies to discuss threats to its security, as well as its airstrikes.

In comments published Monday, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Turkey and the United States had no plans to send ground troops into Syria but said they had agreed to provide air cover to moderate Syrian fighters.

“If we are not going to send land units to the ground — and we will not — then those forces acting as ground forces cooperating with us should be protected,” Davutoglu told a group of senior journalists over the weekend. His comments were published in Hurriyet newspaper.

Davutoglu also said Turkey wanted to clear its border of IS extremists.

“We don’t want to see Daesh at our border,” Hurriyet quoted Davutoglu as saying, using the Arabic acronym of the group. “We want to see the moderate opposition take its place.”

The Turkish leader also said Turkey’s action against the IS has “changed the regional game.”

___

Frazer reported from Ankara, Turkey.

TIME India

Almost 1 in 3 Lawyers in India Are ‘Fake,’ Claims Top Bar Official

A television journalist sets his camera inside the premises of the Supreme Court in New Delhi
Anindito Mukherjee—Reuters A television journalist sets his camera inside the premises of the Supreme Court in New Delhi on Feb. 18, 2014

“Fake lawyers and nonpracticing law graduates are degrading the standards of the profession”

Nearly a third of all lawyers in India are “fake,” the head of the country’s legal regulator has said.

Manan Kumar Mishra, the chairman of the Bar Council of India (BCI), made the startling revelation during speech in Chennai, the capital of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, on Saturday, the Press Trust of India reports.

“Thirty percent of all lawyers are fake, who either hold fraudulent degrees or are nonpracticing persons and 20% of those who sport lawyers’ robes do not have proper degrees,” Mishra said. “Fake lawyers and nonpracticing law graduates are degrading the standards of the profession.”

The spread of “fake” lawyers, Mishra added, was also causing disruptions in the legal system. “Strikes on petty issues have become a regular phenomenon due to such persons,” he said, “We are serious about this and will take stiff action.”

Mishra’s statement comes on the heels of the arrest last month of a former law minister in the provincial government in New Delhi following a BCI complaint alleging that he had falsely claimed to be a law graduate.

And earlier this year, police in Tamil Nadu busted an elaborate scam to sell counterfeit certificates for legal and engineering courses. The illegal operation only came to light when three would-be lawyers applied to register with the state’s bar association, which discovered that their credentials were in fact fake.

TIME Markets

Asia Stocks Fall Amid China Sell-Off

China Stock Market
Imaginechina/Corbis A concerned Chinese investor walks past a screen displaying prices of shares at a stock brokerage house in Huaibei city, China on July 27, 2015.

Asian stocks had already started the week on a dour note

(SEOUL, South Korea) —The Shanghai share index dived more than 8 percent Monday as Chinese stocks suffered a renewed sell-off despite government efforts to support the market.

Other Asian markets also were lower. The Shanghai Composite Index closed down 8.5 percent at 3,725.56.

Chinese shares fell dramatically in June after a sizzling yearlong rally took the market to unsustainable heights.

A period of stability was achieved after the government announced draconian support measures including forbidding major shareholders from selling any of their shares.

Monday’s fall was the biggest one-day decline since Beijing began its intervention.

The Chinese sell-off rattled other markets in the region. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was down 3.1 percent and Japan’s Nikkei 225 dropped 1 percent. South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.4 percent.

Asian stocks had already started the week on a dour note, rattled by a last week’s report on Chinese manufacturing that sparked a sell-off in gold as well as copper and other commodities.

TIME Bangladesh

Only 100 Tigers Remain in Bangladesh’s Sundarban Forests, Survey Shows

India Tigers Census
Joydip Kundu—AP ARoyal Bengal tiger prowls in Sunderbans, at the Sunderban delta, about 130 kilometers (81 miles) south of Calcutta, India on April 26, 2014.

The 3,860-mile mangrove forest is one of the big cats' largest natural habitats

Only some 100 tigers currently roam the Sundarban forests of Bangladesh, a new survey has discovered, indicating far fewer big cats than previously thought in one of their largest global habitats.

The yearlong survey that ended in April was based on footage from hidden cameras and found the true number of tigers to be between 83 and 130, Agence France-Presse reported.

“So plus or minus we have around 106 tigers in our parts of the Sundarbans,” Tapan Kumar Dey, the Bangladesh government’s wildlife conservator, told AFP. “It’s a more accurate figure.”

The number represents a precipitous drop from the 440 figure included in the last tiger census in 2004, although experts say in hindsight the earlier calculation may have been inaccurate since it was based on a study of the animals’ paw prints or pugmarks.

The news from Bangladesh is in contrast to South Asian neighbor India — home to about 70% of the global tiger population — where the Environment Ministry said in January that the number of tigers had risen to 2,226 from 1,411 in 2008. There are apparently 74 tigers on the Indian side of the Sundarbans, the mangrove forest that stretches for nearly 4,000 miles across both countries.

Monirul Khan, a zoology professor at Bangladesh’s Jahangirnagar University and the country’s foremost expert on tigers, stressed that the government needs to intervene in order to protect the animals from poaching and their habitat from destruction through development.

The number of wild tigers worldwide is currently estimated at just 3,200 compared to 100,000 in 1900, and WWF says they are in danger of soon becoming extinct.

[AFP]

TIME China

A Mother in China Fell to Her Death Inside an Escalator but Somehow Saved Her Toddler

A metal panel gave way as she stepped across it

A woman in China was crushed to death on Saturday after falling through a panel of flooring at the top of an escalator in a department store in Hubei province.

Xian Liujuan, 30, was carrying her young son at the time but managed to push him out of harms way as she fell, reports Agence France-Presse.

CCTV footage posted to YouTube on Sunday appears to show Xian stepping off the escalator onto a metal panel, which gives way. As she falls, Xian pushes her child away from her and a shop assistant drags him to safety.

The assistant then grabs hold of Xian’s hand but the escalator keeps rolling and she disappears into the mechanism.

According to local paper the Wuhan Evening News, maintenance work had been carried out on the escalator at the Anliang shopping mall in Jingzhou and workers had allegedly forgotten to screw the access cover into place.

Xian’s body was recovered four hours later by a team of firefighters.

The video, which contains graphic scenes that some viewers may find upsetting, can be seen here.

[AFP]

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TIME Australia

Australian Leader Urged to Reveal What Happened to Vietnamese Refugee Boat

Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott delivers a lecture on "Our Common Challenges: Strengthening Security in the Region" in Singapore
Edgar Su — REUTERS Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott delivers a lecture titled "Our Common Challenges: Strengthening Security in the Region" in Singapore on June 29, 2015

A significant number of children were thought to have been aboard

Australian officials are being accused of breaking international law after 42 Vietnamese asylum seekers were allegedly sent back to Vietnam after arriving in Australian waters by boat.

A small wooden vessel was spotted off of Australia’s northwest coast last week, the BBC reports. It was apparently carrying the asylum seekers, whose status is currently unknown.

Australia’s Prime Minister Tony Abbott has refused to reveal what happened to the migrants, simply stating that the Australian government stance was to “do what we have always done, and that is to act in accordance with Australia’s interest.” Canberra has recently adopted a policy of “tow-backs,” forcing migrant boats away when they enter national waters.

Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, who belongs to the Australia Greens party, has called for greater transparency in the case, the BBC reports.

“Handing these people directly over to the Vietnamese Government constitutes refoulement, which is a breach of the Refugee Convention,” she said in a statement.

Australia courted controversy recently with allegations that officials paid people smugglers bound for its shores to turn around. Abbott has refused to comment on the claims, which if confirmed would amount to participation in human trafficking, say human-rights activists.

[BBC]

TIME Asia

Asian Superpowers China and India Top List of Nations Whose Millionaires Move Abroad

General Economy Images Of China
Tomohiro Ohsumi—Bloomberg/Getty Images The Oriental Pearl Radio & TV Tower, right, and commercial buildings are illuminated as they stand at dusk in Shanghai, China, on Tuesday, April 21, 2015.

Tens of thousands of "high-net-worth individuals" have left to seek a better life overseas

We may be in the midst of “the Asian century,” but a new report shows that many of the wealthiest citizens of the continent’s two fastest-growing economies — China and India — have chosen to leave their countries and settle down abroad.

A total of 91,000 Chinese millionaires left the country and settled overseas in the past 14 years, while the exodus of Indian millionaires ranked second at 61,000, according to a report by consultancies New World Wealth and LIO Global. France, Italy, Russia, Indonesia, South Africa and Egypt round out the top eight.

The study, released this month, looked at immigration data from 2000 and 2014 indicating applications for a second citizenship or change of domicile (permanent residence).

The U.K. — its capital city London, in particular — appears to be the most popular destination for the world’s rich to settle down in, followed by the U.S, Singapore, Australia and Hong Kong. The report says Indians tend to move to countries like Australia and the United Arab Emirates, while Singapore and Hong Kong are popular destinations for China’s wealthy.

Despite the large-scale departure of millionaires, both China and India still have plenty of wealthy citizens who chose to stay back — reflected by their respective positions at fifth and 10th on the list of countries with the most millionaires overall. They also remain the world’s most populous nations, sharing a third of the global population.

Those who leave generally cite reasons like “turmoil in home country, security concerns and optimizing education of children,” the report said.

Read next: China Slowdown? Depends on Where You Look

Listen to the most important stories of the day

TIME Afghanistan

21 Dead in Afghan Wedding Gunfight

Most of the dead were wedding guests aged 14 to 60 years old

(KABUL, Afghanistan) — A shootout at a wedding party in northern Afghanistan has left 21 people dead and another 10 wounded, an official said Monday.

Jaweed Basharat, the governor of Baghlan province, said a gunfight broke out between two groups attending the wedding in Andarab district late Sunday.

Most of the dead were wedding guests aged 14 to 60 years old, he said.

Baghlan and other provinces of the north have been plagued by insurgent attacks since the U.S.-led invasion in 2001 that toppled the Taliban. However, the war is often used as a cover for criminal activity and personal feuds.

The police chief of Andarab, Col. Gulistan Qasani, said hostility between the two groups involved in the gunfight had been simmering for many years.

“The clash broke out after a relative of a provincial police official was assassinated during the wedding party,” Qasani said.

He said some 400 people had gathered at a private house for the wedding of a local mullah’s son.

“When we collected the bodies it was difficult to determine who were the shooters and who were not, because I could not find any weapons,” Qasani said.

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