As interest rates are rising, more households come under pressure to mitigate their loans and stabilize their financial situation. These, developments and other necessities have prompted innovations in the Fintech industry. The industry is changing fast and disruptions such as digital banking, cloud lending and blockchain are becoming common terms. One term reappearing frequently is loan consolidation.

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine is the best protection against the measles virus. The CDC reports that two doses of the MMR vaccine provides 97 percent protection against measles and one dose provides 93 percent protection.

The World Health Organization (WHO) and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Wednesday (local time) said that measles immunization had dropped significantly since the coronavirus pandemic began, resulting in a record high of nearly 40 million children missing a vaccine dose last year.

"There is now an imminent threat of measles spreading to different regions around the world as COVID-19 has led to a steady decline in vaccination coverage and weakened surveillance of the disease," said WHO and CDC in a joint report.

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Egypt's Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri (L), heads the closing session of the COP27 climate conference, at the Sharm el-Sheikh International Convention Centre in Egypt's Red Sea resort city of the same name, on November 20, 2022. LEHTIKUVA / AFP

The United Nations Climate Change Conference COP27 closed today with a breakthrough agreement to provide "loss and damage" funding for vulnerable countries hit hard by climate disasters.

"This outcome moves us forward," said Simon Stiell, UN Climate Change Executive Secretary. "We have determined a way forward on a decades-long conversation on funding for loss and damage - deliberating over how we address the impacts on communities whose lives and livelihoods have been ruined by the very worst impacts of climate change."

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Photo: Tom Page

In response to the devastating impacts of climate change affecting vulnerable people all over the world, the COP27 Presidency on Tuesday launched the Sharm-El-Sheikh Adaptation Agenda in partnership with the High-Level Champions and the Marrakech Partnership.

"The Sharm-El-Sheikh Adaptation Agenda outlines 30 Adaptation Outcomes to enhance resilience for 4 billion people living in the most climate-vulnerable communities by 2030," the UN Climate Change said in a statement posted on its Twitter handle.

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LEHTIKUVA / AFP

A top EU official has said that Brussels is concerned about recent layoffs at Twitter and gaps in the social network's content moderation practices.

"The recent layoffs @Twitter and today's results of the Code of Conduct against #Hate Speech are a source of concern. In my meeting at Twitter's HQ, I underlined that we expect Twitter to deliver on their voluntary commitments and comply with EU rules, including #GDPR & #DSA," EU Commissioner for Justice Didier Reynders tweeted.

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The world's population is projected to reach 8 billion people on Tuesday, according to the UN estimates, which consider this a milestone in human development.

The latest projections by the United Nations suggest that the global population could grow to around 8.5 billion in 2030, 9.7 billion in 2050 and 10.4 billion in 2100.

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Meta headquarters

Facebook parent Meta announced on Wednesday to slash around 11,000 jobs as a part of mass layoffs to cut expenses and transform its business model. As the tech industry is slashing jobs, Meta too announced layoffs.

"We are also taking a number of additional steps to become a leaner and more efficient company by cutting discretionary spending and extending our hiring freeze through Q1," said Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg in a statement on Wednesday.

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World Health Organisation headquarters, Geneva, north and west sides. Photo: Yann Forget

The World Health Organization (WHO) is looking to rename monkeypox to "MPOX" to destigmatize the virus, according to a US newspaper report.

The decision follows growing pressure from Biden officials, who privately asked WHO to change the name, The Politico reported. The report said this decision could be announced on Wednesday.

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Ukrainian soldiers stand guard on the road from Mykolaiv to Kherson, on November 13, 2022, amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine. Photo by AFP / LEHTIKUVA

The suspension of hostilities in the Russian military operation in Ukraine due to winter may last up to six months, according to The New York Times.

Rain and soft soil in late November will slow down the movement of both Ukrainian and Russian troops. Possible heavy snowfall and cold weather could also slow down operations on the battlefield, the newspaper said.

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The European Commission on Wednesday proposed an unprecedented support package for Ukraine of up to EUR18 billion for 2023. This will come in the form of highly concessional loans, disbursed in regular instalments as of 2023.

This stable, regular and predictable financial assistance - averaging EUR1.5 billion per month - will help cover a significant part of Ukraine's short-term funding needs for 2023, which the Ukrainian authorities and the International Monetary Fund estimate at EUR3 to EUR4 billion per month.

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Photo: Kindred Group

Kindred Group has received a warning and a sanction fee of SEK 10.9 million from the Swedish Gambling Authority for shortcomings in its work against money laundering and financing of terrorism.

Kindred Group plc’s (Kindred) wholly owned subsidiary, Spooniker Ltd (Spooniker), has today received a warning and a sanction fee of SEK 10.9 million by the Swedish Gambling Authority (SGA).

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Photo: NASA

The existing climate pledges made by the world are insufficient to keep the 2015 Paris Agreement's aim within reach. It is anticipated that global warming will exceed the 1.5-degree Celsius threshold.

While exceeding the 1.5-degree limit appears inevitable, the researchers chart several potential courses in which the overshoot period is shortened, in some cases by decades.

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President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, Prime Minister Of Ukraine Denys Shmyhal and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz address a press conference during the International Expert Conference on the Recovery, Reconstruction and Modernisation of Ukraine in Berlin on October 25, 2022. LEHTIKUVA / AFP

Reiterating solidarity towards war-ravaged Ukraine, European Union is set to propose a substantial financial package of up to EUR 1.5  billion a month to the country which would contribute to covering its financing needs for 2023.

Making the announcement, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen tweeted, "Good to stay in close touch with Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

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LEHTIKUVA

Globally, two-thirds of young people do not achieve basic skills that they ought to learn in school, finds a new study by the ifo Institute. “These are alarming numbers,” says Ludger Wößmann, Director of the ifo Center for the Economics of Education. The figure for the UK is 19.0 percent, for the US it is 24.7 percent, and for Canada it is 14.9 percent – but for Estonia, for example, it is only 10.5 percent. “This means a total loss of USD 700 trillion in global economic output over the remainder of the century,” says ifo researcher Sarah Gust.

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Ten year old Zarafshan takes a bite of a high-energy biscuit at her desk in Panjsher Province, Afghanistan. Picture: WFP

The European Union has donated EUR50 million (USD 49.7 million) to World Food Programme (WFP) in a bid to help Afghan communities with livelihoods and resilience support, WFP has informed.

Having struggled through a year of unprecedented economic hardships and environmental disasters like earthquakes and flooding, the people of Afghanistan are less prepared than ever to weather another harsh winter, WFP said in a statement.

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Hot weather in France. LEHTIKUVA

At least 15,000 were killed by hot weather in Europe this year, said WHO Regional Director for Europe, Hans Henri Kluge on Monday.

"Based on country data submitted so far, it is estimated that at least 15, 000 people died specifically due to the heat in 2022. Among those, nearly 4,000 deaths in Spain, more than 1,000 in Portugal, more than 3,200 in the United Kingdom, and around 4,500 deaths in Germany were reported by health authorities during the 3 months of summer," Kluge said in a statement.

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