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US President-elect Donald Trump on Monday chose Ben Carson, the mild-mannered retired neurosurgeon who challenged him for the Republican nomination, to turn around troubled US inner cities as secretary of housing and urban development. Carson, an African American who is a religious conservative, has no background in housing policy but has cited his poor childhood in Detroit as a qualification for the job. "Ben Carson has a brilliant mind and is passionate about strengthening communities and families within those communities," Trump said in a statement.
Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi prepared to hand in his resignation Monday after suffering a ruinous referendum defeat cheered by populist leaders but sparking fresh jitters in Europe. "My experience of government finishes here," said a downcast Renzi after acknowledging a defeat of almost 60-40 percent over his constitutional reform bid, which threw the future of one of the eurozone's biggest economies into turmoil. Renzi, 41, will meet President Sergio Mattarella later Monday to hand in his resignation formally after a final cabinet meeting.
European stocks and the euro rebounded sharply Monday as investors were reassured by the speed of Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi's resignation after losing a crunch referendum. The region's markets began the day in negative territory, with Milan tumbling two percent, but recovered somewhat with sentiment soothed also by the defeat of the far-right in Austria's presidential election. "The Italian referendum is the major story that will dominate market moves throughout Monday... after Renzi left his position after a bruising defeat," said GKFX analyst James Hughes.