Mideast: Possible Terror Threat Prompts Disruptive Electronic Device Ban on Specific US- and UK-bound Airlines

On March 21, the United States and United Kingdom announced new measures prohibiting airline passengers from carrying large electronic devices, including laptop computers, in their carry-on luggage on flights from several Middle Eastern destinations to the US or UK. According to multiple credible, but unconfirmed, media reports, the new security measures were triggered by intelligence that an Al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorist group has developed bombs that can be disguised as batteries for electronic devices.

Turkey & the Netherlands Diplomatic Row: Latest Update

The political row that recently erupted between the Netherlands and Turkey is already showing signs of settling into a war of words, accompanied by largely symbolic diplomatic tit-for-tat measures. Despite harshly worded threats by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to implement strong reprisals against the government in The Hague, Ankara is unlikely to enact serious sanctions that would severely hamper Dutch business interests in Turkey.

What the Fed Hike Really Means for Emerging Markets

On Wednesday, the US Federal Reserve raised the federal funds rate target range to .75%-1%, up from 0.5%. The announcement followed the release of an impressive ADP job report last week, which documented 289,000 jobs added to the US economy in February, 100,000 above the expected level. The report also noted personal consumption expenditure policymakers preferred barometer of inflation to be finally nearing the Feds 2% target, while prospects of a large fiscal stimulus under President Donald Trump is mounting additional pressure on the Fed to begin its series of anticipated hikes to plan accordingly for higher growth (and inflation) in 2018 and 2019.

Revised US Executive Order to Prohibit Entry to US by Citizens of Six Countries; Implementation Scheduled for March 16

The US government issued a revised executive order on March 6 after legal challenges against a Jan. 27 order. The new directive will ban citizens of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen from entering the US for 90 days; the administration of President Donald Trump removed Iraq from the list of blacklisted countries following negotiations with the Iraqi government, and in light of its role in fighting the Islamic State in conjunction with US forces.