Current Affairs Global - 9 November 2013

1. Super Typhoon Haiyan, the most powerful storm in the world this year, hit the Philippines yesterday, as millions of people huddled indoors and business in vulnerable areas shut down. Haiyan smashed into the central island, the island of Samar, about 600 kilometres southeast of Manila, at 4:40 a.m and was travelling quickly northwest. More than 100 people were killed and nearly 800,000 displaced, as per Red Cross. The category 5 super-typhoon Haiyan, one of the strongest ever registered, has caused havoc in 36 provinces of the Philippines after making landfall yesterday.

2. U.S. automatically lost voting rights at UNESCO, after missing a crucial deadline to repay its debt to the world-s cultural agency. The U.S. hasn-t paid its dues to the Paris-based U.N. Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization in protest over the decision by world governments to make Palestine a UNESCO member in 2011. Israel suspended its dues at the same time.

3. Jordan will replace Saudi Arabia on the Security Council for a two-year term starting in January after the Saudis' unprecedented rejection of the seat hours after they were elected. Earlier this week, Jordan dropped its bid for a seat on the UN Human Rights Council, leaving Saudi Arabia a clear path in the now uncontested election next Tuesday.
4. The US economy added 204,000 jobs in October, an unexpected burst of hiring during a month in which the federal government was partially shut down for 16 days. At the same time, the unemployment rate rose to 7.3% in October from 7.2% in September, likely because furloughed federal workers were counted as unemployed. The report noted that the shutdown did not affect total jobs. This data raises optimism about economic health and progress of the world-s largest economy.

5. China-s exports jumped 5.6% year-on-year in October, increasing optimism about Chinese economy ahead of a weekend policy meeting to reform the world-s second-largest economy. October exports were valued at 1.14 trillion yuan (USD 185.4 billion), while imports stood at 0.95 trillion yuan, up 7.6% year-on-year. China-s exports for the first 10 months of the year rose 7.8% and imports climbed by 7.3%.

6. Standard & Poor's lowered its long-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit ratings on the Republic of France on Friday by one notch to 'AA' from earlier rating 'AA+'. S&P also revised France's sovereign credit outlook up to stable from negative. High unemployment is weakening support for further significant fiscal and structural policy measures are the main reasons behind this credit rating downgrade.