Global Scan

For Americans, Canada is becoming a bargain again


A Canadian dollar coin, commonly called a "Loonie," and an American dollar bill are seen in this staged photo from 2010, when the Canadian dollar was riding high.


Mark Blinch/Reuters

The Canadian dollar, known as a loonie because of the loon that graces its dollar coins, is falling against the US dollar. In recent years, the US and Canadian dollars have been basically equal. But as the US Federal Reserve pulls back on some of its stimulus, the US dollar is rising, drawing investors out of the Canadian dollar.

The loonie is now worth about 89 US cents and some analysts say it could fall as low as 85 cents over the next few years. That actually could be a shot in the arm for the Canadian economy, where a weaker currency usually leads to higher exports, according to The Globe and Mail.

In India, there's a skin lightening cream for every body part — almost

India is battling with itself over whether the popularity of skin lightening creams are a sign of Indian society's racisim. Now, a comedian has released an ad for a product that purports to lighten the last body part previously untouched: the male genitals.

In the ad, the man says he has problems finding a wife, but once he uses the cream — presto — his problems are solved. According to the BBC's Trending blog, the ad is made in almost the same style of an ad for a real product that targets women interested in lightening their intimate regions. And while the ad has generated a lot of amused responses, the skin lightening industry in India is big business. A 2010 report says more than $432 million was spent on "fairness," with growth at 18 percent per year.

This household pet is not your average dog

More than 50 years ago, a Russian researcher set out to see if he could domesticate the wild fox. And his research is still going on. PRI's The World visited Novosibirsk, the capital of Siberia, to check on that work. 

Researchers there are quick to say the foxes in the test aren't really domesticated yet, but the foxes are not really wild anymore, either. They're somewhat housebroken, walk on a leash and will even do tricks on command. Perhaps most surprising, though, is that their physical characteristics — the shape of their faces and their tales — have started to change, as PRI's The World reports.

Are Brazil's police too comfortable using deadly force?

Brazilian police are responsible for about 2000 deaths each year, according to a report from The Economist. Usually, the deaths pass without much public awareness. But that changed, recently, when an innocent woman was caught in the crossfire of a police shooting.

The police put the woman into the trunk of their car, but she fell out and was dragged hundreds of feet before officers noticed. The entire incident was captured on video, outraging the nation. Two police officers have been charged with murder. Those two officers, and a third who has not been charged, are responsible for 69 deaths since 2000.

That's one big hole in the ground

Stefan Glowacz and Chris Sharma were looking for a challenge and they found it in Oman. They lowered themselves into a massive cave — so big you could fit the Great Pyramid at Giza inside of it — and then spent more than two weeks climbing out. They actually spent nights outside, but they did all of the climbing, including horizontally across the cave's ceiling, using ropes and an iron grip, documented in this video from PRI's The World.

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Weather around the world

The southern Philippines are about to get pretty wet. A tropical disturbance is moving into the island chain, promising torrential rains and flooding, according to AccuWeather. As much as 12 inches of rain is expected in the mountains by the end of the weekend.