Feature: The Case of Hong Kong’s Missing Booksellers

The Case of Hong Kong’s Missing Booksellers Lam Wing-kee knew he was in trouble. In his two decades as owner and manager of Hong Kong’s Causeway Bay Books, Lam had honed a carefully nonchalant routine when caught smuggling books into mainland China: apologize, claim ignorance, offer a cigarette to the officers, crack a joke. For most of his career, the routine was foolproof.
Thin and wiry, with an unruly pouf of side-swept gray hair and a wisp of mustache, Lam was carrying a wide mix of books that day: breathless political thrillers, bodice-rippers and a handful of dry historical tomes. The works had only two things in common: Readers hungered for them, and each had been designated contraband by the Communist Party’s Central Leading Group for Propaganda and Ideology. For decades, Lam’s bookstore had thrived despite the ban — or maybe because of it. Operating just 20 miles from the mainland city of Shenzhen, in a tiny storefront sandwiched between a pharmacy and an upscale lingerie stor..

China Finds California Wine Pairs Well With a Trade War

China Finds California Wine Pairs Well With a Trade War
Retaliatory tariffs are a blow to exporters increasingly catering to young, newly wealthy Chinese looking for bottles with cachet.

Cabernet isn’t the most obvious pawn in a trade war between the United States and China. Airplanes and their parts are the leading American export to China. Soybeans and wheat grow in Trump country.
But China’s selection of wine as a target of retaliatory tariffs did not surprise Michael Honig, a winemaker in the Napa Valley, where the tariff would hit hardest.
“The reason the government realizes they should penalize us is, we are branded,” said Mr. Honig, the president of Honig Vineyard and Winery. “It’s hard to go after a wheat grower, because who is a wheat grower? It’s a commodity. We are not a commodity.”
The news was an unwelcome turn of events for Mr. Honig and many California winemakers, who have spent years trying to carve out a place in the hearts of wealthy Chinese consumers. That hard wor..

On Medicine: Can Doctors Choose Between Saving Lives and Saving a Fortune?

Supported by Magazine Can Doctors Choose Between Saving Lives and Saving a Fortune? Photo Credit Photo illustration by Cristiana Couceiro. Syringe: Peter Dazeley/Getty Images. To understand something about the spiraling cost of health care in the United States, we might begin with a typical conundrum: Imagine a 60-something man — a nonsmoker, overweight, with diabetes — who has just survived a heart attack. Perhaps he had an angioplasty, with the placement of a stent, to open his arteries. The doctor’s job is to keep the vessels open. She has two choices of medicines to reduce the risk for a second heart attack. There’s Plavix, a tried-and-tested blood thinner, that prevents clot formation; the generic version of the drug costs as little as 25 cents a pill. And there’s Brilinta, a newer medicine that is also effective in clot prevention; it costs about $6.50 a pill — 25 times as much.
Brilinta is admittedly more effective than Plavix — by all of 2 percentage points. In a yearlong ..

UK manufacturing activity softens in early 2018, says new survey

The Purchasing Managers’ Index came in at 55.1 in the month with the average reading for the first quarter of 2018 was the lowest in a year
Britain’s manufacturers saw activity soften in early 2018 according to the latest survey snapshot of the sector.
The Purchasing Managers’ Index came in at 55.1 in the month, above the 50 point that separates contraction from expansion and up slightly from the 55 reading registered in February.
However, the average reading for the first quarter of 2018 was the lowest in a year.
“The latest PMI survey provided further evidence that UK manufacturing has entered a softer growth phase so far this year,” said Rob Dobson of IHS Markit, which compiles the survey.
The Office for National Statistics estimates that manufacturing, which accounts for around 10 per cent of UK GDP, expanded by 1.3 per cent in the final quarter of 2017 and by 2.5 per cent over the year as a whole.
Exports were helped by the weakness of pound and also strong demand from the r..

UK cyclist killed in Menorca road accident named as IQE executive Phillip Rasmussen

A man has been arrested in connection with the crash
Technology company IQE has confirmed its finance chief, Phillip Rasmussen, was killed in an accident while on holiday over the weekend.
Mr Rasmussen, 47, was hit by a car while cycling in Menorca, Spain.
A 25-year-old American man has been arrested on suspicion of drink driving, after failing a roadside breath test.
“The news of Phil’s death has shocked and distressed all of us at IQE. The tragedy, of course, will be most deeply felt by Phil’s family, who we send our heartfelt condolences to at this terrible time.
“It is also a tragedy for so many of us who considered Phil a friend as much as a colleague,” said IQE’s president and chief executive, Drew Nelson.
“Phil was a great colleague and an accomplished CFO. He made the role his own, contributing so much over his ten years with us to IQE’s current strength; to the detailed and principled way we do things; to the potential we see before us as a firm.
“It has been my gre..