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cargo plane loaded for takeoffPirate Gets 34 Years for Hijacking – Abduwali Muse was sentenced to 34 years in prison for his role in the 2009 hijacking of the Maersk Alabama off the coast of Somalia.  The ship’s captain, Richard Phillips, was taken hostage and a standoff lasted 5 days until U.S. Navy Seals ultimately rescued Phillips.

The attack attracted global attention to the growing problem of piracy, especially in and around the Gulf of Aden.  Read more from Bloomberg.

Trans-Atlantic Merger – The New York and German stock exchanges announced a blockbuster merger that would combine the two giant markets.  This news comes just a week after a similar announcement from the stock exchanges in London and Toronto.

International trade will be closely watching these developments and their effects on currency and global financial markets.  Read more from the New York Times.

China is No. 2 – Japan’s government officially announced that it had been overtaken as the world’s second largest economy by China.  Economist predict that China is on pace to overtake the U.S. in terms of gross domestic product (GDP) by 2025 .

Read more about the Chinese reaction to the news from the Wall Street Journal.

Boeing’s New 747 – The 747-8 Intercontinental was announced this week, Boeings’ largest airliner to date.  The aircraft has logged nearly 1,700 test hours and is expected to be in service by early spring.  The plane will be available in both freighter and passenger configurations.

The first Boeing 747 made its debut over 42 years ago.  Learn more from Wired.