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Tuesday’s papers: Stock sell-off, Croatian steel bid, Sámi Day celebrations and dual fireballs

Most Finnish newspapers lead off on Tuesday with overnight slumps on stock exchanges in the US and elsewhere. Local news is all over the map, from steel-industry intrigue to Lapland's tourist business and dual fireball sightings.

Saamen lippu
Flags fly to honour the indigenous Sámi community. Image: Emmi Korhonen / Lehtikuva

The business daily Kauppalehti’s lead headline refers to a “bloodbath on Wall Street” and a doubling of the so-called “fear-index,” a closely-watched indicator of expected near-term stock market volatility.

Another headline asks: “Did Trump set a trap for himself by taking credit for the stock market rise?” The US president has repeatedly boasted about the record-high equities market, most recently in last week's State of the Union address. In fact, share values have grown more slowly in his first year in office than they did throughout his predecessor Barack Obama’s eight years in office.

On the domestic front, Kauppalehti notes that the volume of real estate deals has declined from its recent peak and looks behind the scenes of an extraordinary meeting of shareholders in the Finnish steel company Afarak, formerly known as Ruukki. The group's biggest shareholder, Kermas, headed by Croatian businessman Danko Končar, wants Afarak to delist from the Finnish stock exchange.

TS: Filthy drinking water and a fireball

Turun Sanomat from the south-west leads off with a warning of a ticking infrastructure time bomb. It says there could be many repeats of this week’s sewage pipe rupture in the town of Nousiainen, just north of Turku. That allowed raw sewage to contaminate tap water, sickening hundreds of local residents. The paper cites experts who warn that thousands of kilometres of water pipes are in extremely bad condition, potentially leading to a proliferation of such incidents. It notes that Finland's water supply network includes some 107,000 kilometres of pipes.

As of Tuesday evening, residents of Nousiainen are forbidden to use water from faucets as the water system undergoes chlorination. The paper carries of list of places where they may go to wash and instructions on what local homeowners should do during and after the chlorination process.

Moving its gaze from the gutter to the stars, the paper also reports on sightings of a fireball late Monday off the south-west in clear, cold conditions. That followed another meteor that apparently crashed into the sea near the south-coast town of Pargas late Sunday. One woman from Uusikaupunki says she witnessed both celestial phenomena.

LK: Sámi fete and a non-melting castle

Meanwhile, along with stock market reports, the Rovaniemi-based Lapin Kansa looks at celebrations of Sámi Day, honouring indigenous people concentrated across the northern Nordic region. Also on the local radar: Finnish Lapland's tourism sector is enjoying a busy season and considering further investments in the area's airports – as well as in Kemi's Ice Castle, with plans to make it unmeltable to attract year-round visitors.

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