May 23, 2018

Law professor and political novice set to be Italy's next prime minister

Giuseppe Conte, Italy's new prime minister designate, speaks after being appointed. A. Masiello/Getty Images

Giuseppe Conte, a 53-year-old civil lawyer and academic, has been given a formal mandate to become Italy’s next prime minister. He has no previous political record and has been accused of embellishing his resume — which he denies.

Why it matters: Conte will lead the government with the support of two populist parties, the anti-establishment Five Star Movement and the far-right League. Both parties used aggressive anti-European rhetoric in the campaign, and advocate fiscal policies that will meet stiff opposition in Brussels. This has raised worries through the region, and investors have abruptly sold off Italian assets.

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The race to catch Nike's Vaporfly shoe before the 2020 Olympics

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Four months ago, on the very same weekend, Eliud Kipchoge became the first human to run a marathon in under two hours, and fellow Kenyan Brigid Kosgei shattered the women's marathon record.

Why it matters: Kipchoge and Kosgei were both wearing Nike's controversial Vaporfly sneakers, which many believed would be banned because of the performance boost provided by a carbon-fiber plate in the midsole that acted as a spring and saved the runner energy.

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Reassessing the global impact of the coronavirus

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Economists are rethinking projections about the broader economic consequences of the coronavirus outbreak after a surge of diagnoses and deaths outside Asia and an announcement from a top CDC official that Americans should be prepared for the virus to spread here.

What's happening: The coronavirus quickly went from an also-ran concern to the most talked-about issue at the National Association for Business Economics policy conference in Washington, D.C.

Tech can't remember what to do in a down market

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Wall Street's two-day-old coronavirus crash is a wakeup alarm for Silicon Valley.

The big picture: Tech has been booming for so long the industry barely remembers what a down market feels like — and most companies are ill-prepared for one.