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CNN 10 - January 7, 2019

CNN 10

New Job Numbers Good Sign For U.S. Economy and Surge in U.S. Stock Market; Increase in Migrants in the UK Brings Challenges and Debate; Ice Festival in Northern China

Aired January 7, 2019 - 04:00:00 ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: Welcome back to CNN 10. It`s great to have you watching on this January 7th. I`m Carl Azuz at the CNN Center and we`re starting the week with what`s been called the biggest surprise of the economic cycle. American employers added 312,000 jobs to the U.S. economy in the month of December. Most experts had estimated they`d add 181,000 jobs. One analyst says the fact that so many more jobs were counted indicates that a possible recession, a sustained decrease in the economy is not going to happen anytime soon. The percentage of the American labor force that doesn`t have a job, the unemployment rate, increased to 3.9 percent in December.

It was at 3.7 percent the month before. Experts say that`s because more Americans got back into the workforce looking for a job. The report also indicated that paychecks on average also increased with employers offering more money to attract new workers. So overall, good news for the U.S. economy. The head of the U.S. Central Bank called the report very strong and because of that and some other events that reassured investors, the U.S. Stock Market jumped up Friday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 747 points then. It was the fourth biggest point increase of all time for the index of 30 major stocks. In fact, every sector of the market increased on Friday. We reported last week how the market saw some major ups and downs in 2018 with several of them setting records. It`s possible that more big swings could be ahead.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Stock market volatility is the new normal but let`s not forget volatility is the old normal too. Yes, 2018 saw the return of mad market swings on five different days. The Dow moved 1,000 points or more. Moves that big have only happened eight times in history. So the fact that five of them occurred last year is significant. But the market is not more volatile than before. Investors just don`t remember the rollercoaster ride because for a decade, stocks pretty much just went steadily higher.

In fact, spikes in volatility have always been a part of Wall Street`s landscape. Just look at this chart going back to 1928. So how long will the current wave of volatility last? Well probably for a while. Uncertainty about the global economy, particularly in Europe and China, has rattled investors. Trade tensions between the U.S. and China have yet to be resolved and investors are worried about interest rates. If the Fed raises rates too quickly, it could slow the economy too much, even trigger a recession. For years, investors would buy every dip, now they seem to sell every rally. So expect more volatility. After a long break, it`s back with a vengeance and it`s likely here to stay.


CARL AZUZ: 10 Second Trivia. Where would you find the busiest shipping route in the world? English Channel, Panama Canal, Suez Canal, or Straight of Gibraltar. According to Guinness Book of World Records, the Dover Straight located in the English Channel is the world`s biggest lane for shipping.

There`s been an increase in the number of migrants trying to cross that channel. Many of them hoping to obtain asylum, permission to stay in the United Kingdom. So far the numbers are in the hundreds, in contrast to the hundreds of thousands who`ve crossed the Mediterranean Sea in the migrant crisis that`s Europe`s largest since World War II. But while the English Channel crossing is much narrower, it`s still very dangerous especially when the people making the journey are often on flimsy boats and don`t have life jackets.


PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Stand on England`s southern coast in the right light and you can see France. Those dark shadows against the golden haze, between them lies a formidable boundary. The channel is at least 19 nautical miles of open water, often with big swells, power tides, ships and ferries plowing up, down and across, but recently much smaller vessels have been crossing too.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you need help?

BLACK: Tiny inflatable boats carrying people from far away. The desperate and determined, risking everything to reach Dover`s white cliffs and make the United Kingdom their home. Out on the channel, channel boat operator Matthew Coka (ph) tells us he`s had contact with five migrant boats in recent months. He recorded video of this moment last year. A small inflatable drifting near the coast.

(MATTHEW COKA): We`ve seen them waving some oars with some t-shirts tied to them. Obviously it was, you know, it was in distress.

BLACK: Three men, one woman in their tiny boat brought onboard. They`d lost their engine. They`re exhausted, dehydrated and lucky to be alive.

Were you able to talk to these people?

(MATTHEW COKA): I tried to communicate with them but they didn`t speak English. But, they were saying they was from, you know, kept saying Iran.

BLACK: Many of those crossing say they`re Iranian. Every civilian boat operator is now under orders to look out for them.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mariners are requested to report any unusual activity or sightings of small vessels transiting the Dover Straights.

BLACK: Under pressure to act, the British government is also deploying it`s resources to find and rescue migrants. There will soon be three of these large border force vessels patrolling this stretch of the coast. The government was initially reluctant to bring in extra safety boats because they feared that could encourage more migrants to attempt the crossing. But they`ve decided saving lives must be the priority.

The minister responsible has questioned whether the migrants are genuine refugees. And some people, including the areas local MP want those rescued by British vessels to be returned to France. That way, the migrant and the traffickers who are really driving this, who are behind this get the message that there`s no point trying. All this is being described by some British newspapers as a migrant crisis. Even though the number of people arriving on this coast are relatively small, especially compared to migrant crossings in the Mediterranean.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The British government says 539 people tried to cross this water and reach the UK in 2018. Many didn`t get close. The French stopped around 42 percent but the fact that Scott, some people concerned triggered talk of a crisis and enflamed some passion is the recent increase. Around 80 percent of the total attempts were in the last three months.

BLACK: Migrant activist Christine Oliver is more concerned about insuring people`s rights to claim asylum.

CHRISTINE OLIVER: We should be demonstrating our compassion and our humanity and understanding rather than worrying about the very small numbers that are coming here.

BLACK: Britain has a proud history of welcoming those in need to it`s shores. The control over borders and migration are a motive often divisive issues here. They drove many to vote for Brexit and they worry some when they see small boats landing uninvited on British beaches. Phil Black,

CNN, near Dover on the English Channel.


CARL AZUZ: St. Paul, Minnesota is gearing up for it`s 133rd Annual Winter Carnival. It`s the home of the "Ice Palace". A sort of frozen castle that recalls a short story by author F. Scott Fitzgerald. There`ve been dozen of these built in St. Paul over the decades. Across the Pacific, in China`s northern most province, a spectacle of subzero wonderment has already opened.


MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Welcome to Ice and Snow World. It`s an annual festival of ice sculptures and colorful lights in China`s northeastern city of Haibin or "Ice City" as the locals call it. On display there are cathedrals and palaces more than 10 meters high, alongside smaller more delicate exhibits. It`s hard work for the sculptors but the reward of having a guaranteed audience to admire their creations makes it all worth while.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE TRANSLATED: Unlike other`s cultures which are always placed somewhere after being finished, and we do not know who will see them. We know that the ice and snow sculptures here will definitely be seen by lots of tourists.

HOLMES: The Ice Festival attracts more than a million Chinese and international visitors to Haibin every year. And not even the subzero temperature manages to dampen the party atmosphere.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We made sure to wear lots of clothes to keep warm but I think we could use some more. But I think it`s definitely worth it because I - - I don`t think there are many places in the world where you can see the things that we can see here.

HOLMES: The festival will remain open until February when temperatures start to warm up. Michael Holmes, CNN.


CARL AZUZ: There`s been a new visitor making the rounds at a cat caf, so of course this would rate 10 out of 10. Vector (ph) is the name of a toy robot that can do simple things for people like tell the weather or set a timer but it can`t see pets. So it`s engineers brought it here so that it could take pictures and be programmed to identify cats. Some of the animals seem mildly amused. Some didn`t. We`re not sure what Vector (ph) would do if a cat attacked.

But Vector (ph) probably wouldn`t be "victor". Not sure how many "bytes" it would take but with too much "hard wear" the robot could short "circat".

It could get it`s "whiskers crossed". If it tips over the results could be "treadful" and with cats on the prowl, they`d have to closely monitor Vector (ph). It`s a good thing it doesn`t come with a "mouse". I`m Carl Azuz for CNN 10.