Weekly Digest – 25 January 2023

Welcome back to our Weekly Digest. Read on for the latest updates and some ideas to help us all move forward.

National Grid pays households to use less electricity

The National Grid ESO is activating its demand flexibility service to moderate demand during freezing winter days. Households can access discounts if they cut their electricity use by turning off energy-intensive appliances during set times.

Brexit is to blame for missing export target figures

New figures show Britain will not achieve £1tn in exports until 2035, according to the Office of Budget Responsibility. The forecast indicates it will take about 15 years more than initially expected to hit the goal.

Food suppliers refute Tesco’s claims about price hikes

Tesco’s chairman John Allan said it was “entirely possible” that suppliers were taking advantage of poorer households by raising prices unnecessarily.

Key takeaways from Davos

From AI to China to the green economy, here are some key ideas and lingering questions from the World Economic Forum held in Davos last week.

Boost investment in green tech to stimulate the economy

Tony Danker, chief executive of the CBI, demanded that Jeremy Hunt reverse the UK’s trajectory of falling investment in green technologies through a series of actions, including new regulations to stimulate domestic demand.

Microsoft throws its weight behind OpenAI

Microsoft is making a multibillion dollar investment in the artificial intelligence startup OpenAI, which makes ChatGPT, DALL-E and other tools that can write readable text and create images.

IMF chief adjusts original outlook, saying things seem more positive than a few months ago

The head of the International Monetary Fund said growth prospects have picked up in recent months and inflation is retreating from its four-decade high. But she warned against overoptimism and said more substantial growth in China could boost energy prices.

US government hits its debt ceiling

The treasury secretary said the government would suspend debt issuance and investments into two government employee retirement funds until Congress acts.

Spotify cutting 6% of its workforce

The latest tech giant to announce a round of layoffs is Spotify, who said this week that 588 employees will lose their jobs. Content and advertising business officer Dawn Ostroff, who signed the deal with Harry and Meghan, will also depart.

M&Ms ditches “spokescandies” a year after makeover

M&Ms replaced their “spokescandies” with US comedian Maya Rudolph after a rebrand of the cartoon versions caused a backlash. Conservative news outlets deemed the recent makeovers, which were meant to be more inclusive and appealing to more people, as a product of “woke culture.”

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