In the first week of December 2022, mobile photo and editing app Lensa AI recorded over 5.8 million downloads from users worldwide. The popular photo app uses AI to generate artistic renderings of user-input selfies and pictures. Developed by the U.S.-based Prisma Labs, mobile app Lensa AI launched first in 2018 and reached approximately 1.6 million downloads in January 2021. The app experienced a sudden increase in popularity starting in November 2022 thanks to several TikTok trends and social media buzz on Instagram, amassing almost two million downloads during the month. Users of Lensa AI can input between 10 and 20 pictures or selfies to receive their AI-generated portraits and avatars, which can be used as profile pictures and shared across social media.
Barcelona had more players called up for the 2022 FIFA World Cup than any other club, with 17 players travelling to Qatar for the tournament. Initially, Bayern Munich also had 17 players going to the tournament, yet Sadio Mané had to withdraw from the Senegal squad due to injury. Al Sadd, from the host nation's Qatar Stars League, had 15.
The price of Urals crude oil was recorded at 25.02 U.S. dollars per barrel below the benchmark Brent on December 5, 2022 (based on a rolling average of the past five days). The difference increased after a price cap on Russian oil was announced on December 2, 2022. At the end of February and throughout March 2022, the discount rose significantly, reflecting the market reaction to the Russia-Ukraine war. In October 2022, the average price of Urals oil reached 70.6 U.S. dollars per barrel.
Russian oil price cap
In December 2022, members of the G7, together with the European Union (EU) and Australia, limited the price of one barrel of Russian oil to 60 U.S. dollars in response to the war in Ukraine. The cap was planned to be reviewed every two months to reflect future market developments. The Russian government stated it would not supply oil to the countries imposing a price ceiling on its oil. While the effect of the ban on global oil prices is yet to be seen, it is expected that the ban would benefit other oil producing countries, as the EU would have to replace Russian supplies with other routes. Germany and Poland were the leading importers of Russian oil in the EU in 2021.
EU ban on Russian oil imports
The EU ban on Russian seaborne crude oil imports, announced in June 2022, took effect on December 5, 2022. Furthermore, refined petroleum products will be included from February 5, 2023. Even though the EU prohibited imports of Russian oil and refined products, it still allowed their transport to non-EU countries as long as they are purchased for 60 U.S. dollars per barrel or lower. As a result of the ban, Russia's oil production was forecast to decline to 438 million metric tons in 2022, down 10 percent from the previous year.
Christmas decorations and lights global market value 2021-2027
The value of the global Christmas decorations and lights market was estimated to be worth 6.8 billion U.S. dollars in 2021. This figure was forecast to rise to over nine billion dollars by 2026. This includes lights, Christmas trees and other Christmas decorations.
U.S. full-time employees unadjusted monthly number 2021-2022
As of November 2022, there were 132.15 million full-time employees in the United States. This is an increase from November 2021, when there were 129.32 million full-time employees.
The impact COVID-19 on employment
In December 2019, an infectious disease classified as COVID-19 first started in Wuhan, China. Since being classified as a pandemic, it has caused a global health crisis that has taken the lives of over 3.7 million people worldwide so far. The COVID-19 pandemic has consequently changed every facet of society, most significantly, the economy. As a result of many businesses across all industries being forced to shut down, many employees have been laid off. However, the nationwide unemployment rate has returned to a more normal 3.5 percent as of September 2022.
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and the large number of jobs lost, many residents in the United States filed for unemployment. As an early response to this nation-wide upheaval, the government issued relief checks and extended the benefits paid by unemployment insurance. In January 2021, the amount of unemployment insurance benefits paid rose to 5.62 billion U.S. dollars. As of August 2022, this value had declined to 2.01 billion U.S. dollars.
Most popular national and religious holidays in the United States 2022
Thanksgiving, Veterans day, and Mother's day are the most popular holidays in the United States. According to a survey conducted in the third quarter of 2022, Thanksgiving had a popularity rating of 80 percent, followed by Veterans day and Mother's day with 76 percent. Other favorite holidays among Americans, including both national and religious events, are Memorial Day, Christmas, and Father's day.
In October 2022, the index for consumer confidence in China ranged at 86.8 points, slightly down from 87.2 points in the previous month. The index performed a sideways movement during 2019, dropped in the first half of 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, and regained its former level quickly in the second half of 2020. The index dropped again considerably between March and April 2022.
Consumer confidence Index
The consumer confidence index (CCI), also called Index of Consumer Sentiment (ICS) is a commonly used indicator to measure the degree of economic optimism among consumers. Based on information about saving and spending activities of consumers, changes in business climate and future spending behavior are being projected. The CCI plays an important role for investors, retailers, and manufacturers in their decision-making processes. However, measurement of consumer confidence varies strongly from country to country.
As consumers need time to react to economic changes, the CCI tends to lag behind other indicators like the consumer price index (CPI) and the producer price index (PPI).
Development in China
As shown by the graph at hand, confidence among Chinese consumers picked up since mid of 2016. In October 2017, the CCI hit a record value of 127.6 index points and entered into a sideward movement. Owing to a relative stability in GDP growth, a low unemployment rate, and a steady development of disposable household income, Chinese consumers gained more confidence in the state of the national economy. Those factors also contribute to the consumers’ spending power, which was reflected by a larger share of consumption in China’s GDP. After the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, consumer confidence dropped quickly in the beginning of 2020, but started to recover in the second half of the year, leading to a v-shaped movement of the index in 2020.
Russia: opinion on military actions in Ukraine monthly 2022
The majority of Russians expressed support toward the actions of their country's military forces in Ukraine. In total, nearly three quarters of respondents certainly or rather supported them in November 2022. The largest share of supporters was recorded in the age group of 55 years and older. The level of support saw a slight increase from the previous month, though the share of those certainly supporting was two percent lower.
Frequently used Google search terms in Germany 2022
As of November 2022, several search terms were googled especially actively by German internet users. Among these, the leading three were ‘deutschland gegen japan’, ‘aaron carter’ and ‘deutschland japan’. The terms reflect events, certain dates and ensuing media coverage taking place at the time, such as the Qatar World Cup.
Daily life seems unthinkable without using an online search engine, whether for longer research or quickly checking something, or even just to avoid setting bookmarks, typing in URLs. Google has the highest share among online search engines used on desktop and mobile devices, followed by Bing and Ecosia. While DuckDuckGo was further down on the list, its market share has been rising in Germany. Google may still have a substantial head start compared to its competitors, but users are increasingly apprehensive about data privacy and protection in connection with how the online search giant uses and stores personal information, as well as tracks search queries.
Using search engines was the leading reason to go online among internet users in Germany. In 2021, about 80 percent of desktop traffic in Germany originated from Google.
In 2022, Nigeria's population was estimated at around 219 million individuals. Demographic projections show that the Nigerian population might experience a constant increase in the next decades. By 2050, it is forecast that the population will grow to over 377 million people compared to 2022.
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