What's Next: Aug 31, 2015

Obama on tour to push climate change

US President Barack Obama travels to Alaska today on a three-day tour during which he is expected to push his agenda on climate change and the Arctic. He will travel to a town in the Arctic Circle, becoming the first US president to do so while in office. Some lawmakers in Congress say the US is lagging behind other nations, chief among them Russia, in preparing for the new environmental, economic and geopolitical realities facing the region.

First batch of pilgrims here leave for haj

The first group of Singapore pilgrims undertaking the haj to Mecca this year will leave today. The Mufti of Singapore and a senior director from the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis) will send them off at Changi Airport Terminal 2.

Muslims hope to make the pilgrimage at least once in their lifetime if they have the means.

Muslims currently on the waiting list face an average wait of 12 years, according to Muis.

Clues on timing of US rate hike

Local investors will be looking for fresh clues on the timing of interest rate hikes by the US Federal Reserve. Until last week's global equity and currency market turmoil, most analysts felt the Fed would make its first rate hike next month. One official hinted at the weekend that this may still be the case if markets calm down. But investors will be looking for new signs on the US economy's health, such as jobs data due this Friday, as a guide to the Fed's likely course.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 31, 2015, with the headline 'What'sNext'. Print Edition | Subscribe