The US said on Monday that it wassuspending negotiations with Russia over a ceasefire agreement for Syria, a final recognition that the peace plan announced three weeks ago has collapsed. The state department said that Russia was either “unwilling or unable” to make the Syrian regime adhere to the deal and had instead decided to intensify military action against the opposition.
It was the latest sign of deteriorating relations between Moscow and the west, after Russian President Vladimir Putin withdrew from an agreement with the US to dispose of weapons-grade plutonium. He wrote that Russia was scrapping the deal because of “the emergence of a threat to strategic stability and as a result of unfriendly actions by the United States of America against the Russian Federation”. (FT)
In the news
Sterling nears 31-year low The pound came within a whisker of a three-decade low against the dollar the day after Theresa May, the UK prime minister, told the Conservative party conference that Britain would trigger the process to leave the EU by March of next year. Chancellor Philip Hammond followed the announcement with a warning on Monday of at least two years of economic “turbulence” and a period of “fiscal uncertainty” as the country prepares for Brexit in 2019. (FT) Read our dailyBrexit Briefing. FT subscribers can sign up to receive it daily by email here.
Turkey to extend state of emergency President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will hold on to the extraordinary powers to rule by decree that he assumed after crushing an attempted coup in mid-July for another 90 days. Mr Erdogan’s hint last week that he favoured an indefinite extension of such powers pushed the Turkish lira down past the psychological threshold of TL3 per dollar. (FT)
Clinton hits Trump over taxes and losses The Democratic nominee blasted her rivalover a blockbuster NYT report that he might not have paid taxes for up to 18 years — which the Trump campaign has not disputed. She also questioned Mr Trump’s self-professed business acumen over the reported $916m loss that allegedly would have allowed him to avoid tax for the period: “What kind of genius loses a billion dollars in a single year?” (FT, NBC) Keep track of the 2016 race with our daily US politics newsletter. Sign up here.
Trump Foundation ordered to stop fundraising Donald Trump’s charity was sent a cease-and-desist letter by New York’s attorney-general, which said it was violating state law by soliciting donations without proper certification. It is the latest in a series of setbacks for the scandal-plagued charity, which has come under scrutiny amid reports by the Washington Post of potential wrongdoing, deflecting the Republican nominee’s attempt to focus attention on rival Hillary Clinton’s family foundation. (WaPo)
Illinois to suspend investment activity with Wells Fargo The state’s decision will involve $30bn in investment activity with the troubled bank and marks the latest setback resulting from its sales scandal. (FT)
ING’s 5,000 job cuts The Dutch bank announced a significant scaling back of its branch network in Belgium and the Netherlands and cutting more than 5,000 jobs, providing a window into the stark challenges facing the industry. (FT)
It’s a big day for
Tim Kaine and Mike Pence Given the dominating presence of the presidential nominees, you might be forgiven for forgetting the two men backing up Mrs Clinton and Mr Trump. The pair will face off in the only vice-presidential debate, where the Republican, Mr Pence, will try to make up for a self-destructive week by his running mate, while Mr Kaine tries to extend Mrs Clinton’s advantage with female voters by highlighting the Republican ticket’s anti-abortion record. (MSNBC)
Afghanistan A group of international donors will meet in Brussels, where they are expected to approve billions of dollars in funding for the Afghan government over thenext four years. (FT)
Keep up with the important business, economic and political stories in the coming days with the FT’s weekahead.
Food for thought
Hopes of Iraq’s oil capital go up in flames The southern city of Basra aspired to Dubai’s success — but the oil price collapse and corruption have left it in chaos. (FT)
Theresa May walks into a Brexit trap Gideon Rachman on the dangers inherent in the UK prime minister’s move to announce she will trigger an exit without getting any guarantees. (FT)
Hope, and what came after Barack Obama and 60 other observers and participants on his eight years in office — in the form of an interactive timeline and an interview with the president on five days that shaped his presidency. (NYMag)
Japan’s desperate need for foreign farmers Foreigners willing to farm in Japan will be paid more than locals under a government plan to combat labour shortages. The radical proposal comes as Japan’s farming population has collapsed by 40 per cent over the past decade. (NAR)
The benefits of fasting Restricting your calorie intake can have long-term health benefits, including improved mood and better quality of sleep. But now tech workers have latched on to another potential positive. They say not eating increases their mental agility and ability to focus. Some are even practising 60-hour fasts. (BBC)
How to pronounce everything That fine scotch you’re drinking, its pronounced la-froyg. And those Vietnamese noodles that everyone now loves? Fuh, not pho. And they are just a couple of examples from a new book that aims to help you avoid the most modern of pitfalls: revealing yourself to be a hopeless ignoramus. (The Atlantic)