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Your Tuesday briefing: The US banking crisis

by SuperiorInvest

President Biden sought to reassure Americans that the American banking industry was safeafter federal regulators took over two failing banks within three days. A few mid-sized US banks as well he scrambled to calm his fears their customers.

“Americans can rest assured that our banking system is safe,” Biden said in a brief televised statement. “Your deposits will be there when you need them. The Federal Reserve also created a broader emergency lending program to ensure that other US banks weather the storm.

The rush to reassure bank customers spoke to a fundamental truth of financial markets: Banks can feed on themselves and become a self-fulfilling prophecy, as my colleague says David Leonhardt noted in The Morning. In the DealBook newsletter Andrew Ross Sorkin he called the Fed’s new program “The largest bailout for the US banking system since the 2008 crisis.”

Here’s what we know the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank, a once-obscure lender that focused on technology start-ups. SVB was America’s largest bank collapsed since the collapse of Washington Mutual in 2008 at the height of the global financial crisis. Two other banks they also closed.

Context: Biden sought to differentiate his crackdown from the taxpayer-funded bailouts of 2008 and 2009, when the U.S. funneled hundreds of billions of dollars into rescuing the banking industry. “No losses will be borne by the taxpayers,” Biden insisted.

Federal Reserve System: Investors speculated that the Fed might have to to slow the rate of interest rate growthwhich contributed to the collapse of the banks.

markets: Shares of US regional banks took a beating. Equity indices across Europe suffered worst day of the yearwhile Asian markets were mixed.

The International Criminal Court intends open two war crimes cases tied to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and will seek arrest warrants for several people, according to officials. It would be the first international charges brought since the start of the war.

The cases would blame Russia kidnapping of Ukrainian children and sending them to Russian re-education camps and deliberately targeting civilian infrastructure.

Experts said it was possible that Vladimir Putin, the Russian leader, could be charged. The likelihood of a trial remains slim because the court cannot hear cases in absentia and Russia is unlikely to extradite its own officials.

Even if the cases don’t go to trial, legal experts say the arrest warrant issued by the ICC is symbolically important because it can make someone an outcast because the charges won’t go away. The Ukrainian government independently conducts its own trials of war criminals, and a number of other international bodies investigate atrocities during the war.

More updates from the war:

At his first press conference as Premier, Li Qiang he promised to treat private and state-owned enterprises equally and that the rights of entrepreneurs would be respected. His efforts to revive investor confidence come as the ruling Communist Party struggles to revive economic growth after “zero Covid” restrictions.

Li, which has a business friendly reputation, promised “fair competition” in the trade. He delivered the most emphatic statement by a Chinese leader in years about the need to preserve the vitality of the private sector, which came after a decade in which the party played a growing role in private companies.

He has shown himself ready to take on the economy, while Xi Jinping, China’s leader, has cast himself as an aloof, paternalistic leader who ensures security. The direction of the country’s economy, the world’s second largest, now depends on how these tensions play out.

Background: Weak investor confidence hurt China’s economy. Even after the end of the Covid restrictions, many are still cautious. Li warned that China’s modest 5 percent growth target would not be easy to achieve.

Dubai is becoming “Russia outside of Russia”, at least for the rich. It’s business-oriented, expat-oriented, and apolitical—protests are effectively illegal in the UAE’s authoritarian monarchy. There are no Ukrainian flags displayed in public and war seems distant.

Veins: Kenzaburo Oe was a Nobel laureate who criticized post-war Japan with his powerful novels and essays. He died at the age of 88.

Cities are eager to convert office buildings into housing as telecommuting increases. The premise suggests that cities could solve two problems—a glut of offices and a shortage of apartments—at once.

But it’s harder than you thinkand each building presents a unique challenge. Above all, each unit must have access to fresh air and sunlight.

Pre-war buildings are often simpler conversions. The same logic that shaped how they were designed as offices determines how apartments are planned today: Both share the basic rule that no interior space is more than 25 to 30 feet from a window that opens. Architects often just need to add a bathroom, move along the walls, and voilà: A new apartment is born.

Modern offices can be difficult to adapt. Air conditioning and fluorescent lighting have allowed them to have large floor plans, and there’s a lot of space that’s far from windows — which don’t open — and is largely unusable for apartment living. Solutions need to be more daring, such as cutting a hole in a high-rise building and creating a courtyard.

Pasta alla gricia is a magnificent, simple emblem of Rome. “Take some really good ingredients, treat them with care, and you end up with an amazing dish.” Melissa Clark writes.

Birnam wood‘, by Booker Prize winner Eleanor Catton, is a passionate, funny environmental novel that follows guerrilla gardeners in New Zealand.

in”Chang Can Dunk”, a heartfelt comedy, the short teenager channels his inner Kobe Bryant.

Play Mini crossword puzzleand clue: Quite a few (four letters).

Here are Wordle and Spelling Bee.

You can find all our puzzles here.

That’s it for today’s briefing. See you next time. – Amelia

PS Today is Pi Day if you spell the date the American way: 3.14. The famous mathematical ratio is the perfect symbol for our species’ long quest to tame infinity.

Daily” asks: What is ESG and why are Republicans so mad about it?

You can always reach me at briefing@nytimes.com. I read every comment.

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