(Bloomberg) -- Hello from Washington. From an unexpectedly still-hot labor market to Congress’ struggles to reach a plan to fund the government long-term, we’re breaking down the most important stories from this week.

The stronger-than-expected November jobs report signaled that the US labor market is still humming even under the weight of high interest rates. The data, including the unemployment rate dipping to a four-month low of 3.7% and an uptick in the participation rate, prompted traders to pare expectations for the Federal Reserve to ease monetary policy aggressively next year. 


With a key measure of inflation hitting Tuesday and the Fed’s interest-rate decision on Wednesday, the week ahead will be a pivotal one for investors. Speculation that the Fed is done hiking rates has helped the S&P 500 Index add roughly $4 trillion in market value since late October, and at least one investor predicts stocks will grind higher into 2024. In a market riven with uncertainty, stock bulls who have simply sat tight and refused the temptation to outsmart the market are proving to be the big winners. 

The US FDA’s approval of the first treatment using the Nobel-prize-winning technology Crispr is a medical milestone, not just for the some 100,000 Americans who suffer from sickle cell disease. Editing DNA with the same ease as spell-checking a Word document has long been a scientific holy grail and the technology’s real potential is still in the future.

With the conflict in the Middle East now entering its third month, Bloomberg Opinion’s Noah Feldman & Mohammed Alyahya argue that Israel must now take a bold step toward peace. The best way forward now, according to the authors, is for Israel and Saudi Arabia to restart serious negotiations that not only restore the status quo before Oct. 7, but go further in the direction of genuine, lasting peace based on the creation of a Palestinian state.

Global tensions have also spread to a place briefly considered as a diplomatic safe space: the Arctic. As the region reemerges as a frontier between Russia and the US — even China, it’s also faced the consequences of climate change which warmed the environment and stoked geopolitical adventurism, according to Bloomberg Opinion’s Liam Denning, who takes a final look at how the Far North has become a laboratory of our global ills.  

Meanwhile, hostility within US Congress is high amid efforts to pass a long-term spending bill. Ultraconservatives in the House warned new Speaker Mike Johnson that any attempt to pass Ukraine aid before the country addresses migrant crossings at the US-Mexico border would lead to a rebellion from his right flank. Congress has until early next year to pass funding legislation before facing yet another government shutdown risk.

The indictment Thursday of Joe Biden’s son Hunter on nine federal tax charges is expected to become a political headache for the White House as the president puts a bigger focus on fundraising and campaigning ahead of the 2024 election. Biden, who is in Nevada and California this weekend to appeal to big-name donors, sidestepped the matter on Friday but Republicans are seizing on the case as a political gift. 

Speaking of families, there’s new blood at the top of Bloomberg’s annual ranking of family fortunes. For the first time, the House of Nahyan has joined the list, taking the No. 1 one spot at $305 billion and toppling the Waltons of Walmart. In third place is the family behind Hermès, whose iconic Kelly and Birkin handbags has defied the post-pandemic downturn in luxury.  In total, the world’s richest families added $1.5 trillion this year, largely by sticking together, united by a shared sense of duty and the belief that they’ll be richer for it.

Thanks for reading. Look out for our Sunday briefing, where we’ll look at what you need to know for the week ahead.

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