Good morning, Quartz readers!
What to watch for today
Mixed signals on US jobs. Economists expect that the number of non-farm jobs rose by 155,000 in June, well below the six-month average of 194,000. That could give the US Federal Reserve an impetus to start tapering its bond purchases sooner. But the unemployment rate is forecast to fall to 7.5% from 7.6%. Canada will also release its jobs report.
China looks for a greater say in gold markets. The Shanghai Futures Exchange will start night trading hours for its gold and silver contracts. China believes the move will increase the international interest in its gold contracts and align domestic prices more closely with international rates.
HTC struggles to bounce back. The Taiwanese smartphone maker is expected to meet (paywall) its guidance of $2.33 billion revenue in the second quarter, but will fall short of its own performance last year. Its HTC One smartphone, a competitor to Samsung’s Galaxy S4, has earned rave reviews, but some think its sales have already peaked.
Where’s German manufacturing going? Investors will be looking at May factory orders for an improvement on April’s surprisingly weak figures. Spain will also publish its industrial output data.
While you were sleeping
Samsung’s record profits just weren’t enough. Even though operating profit was up 47% on last year to a record 9.5 trillion won ($8.3 billion), it still missed analyst expectations. The South Korean company hopes that sales of its flagship Galaxy S4 smartphone will speed up later this year from already-record highs, but investors may not be banking on it.
Rongsheng asked for help. China’s biggest non-state shipbuilder is seeking state and shareholder support after reporting losses. Shipbuilders across China saw a 23% year-on-year fall in orders in May amid poor global demand, though that hasn’t stopped Maersk from launching the world’s largest vessel in South Korea this week.
Asian stocks took courage from Europe. Markets across Asia continued gains on Friday, bolstered by news from the European Central Bank and the UK that rates would not only remain low, but do so for an “extended period of time.”
China went after drugs firms. Its top economic planning agency is investigating 60 pharmaceutical companies, including giants like GlaxoSmithKline and Merck, to evaluate costs and pricing. The probe will run parallel but separate to an anti-trust investigation into unfair pricing of infant formula.
Britain’s cyber A-Team. The UK is teaming up with nine of the world’s biggest arms and telecoms companies to bolster cyber-security. The information-sharing group will identify and protect against growing cyber-threats.
Quartz obsession interlude
Steve LeVine how the US has taken a step backwards in the fight against bribery. “Global transparency watchdogs are disputing the rationale for a US federal judge’s ruling that exempts American oil and mining companies from publicly divulging their payments to foreign states and their rulers. The reproach—from Oxfam and Global Witness, the UK-based transparency watchdog—stems from a July 2 ruling by US District Judge John Bates. In his decision, Bates sided with oil and business lobbyists who asserted that if American companies were compelled to publicly reveal such payments, they would be at a competitive disadvantage to state-owned extractive companies that can keep them secret.” Read more here.
Matters of debate
Countries should be paid not to mine fossil fuels. Call it supply-side environmental policy.
Twitter is quietly changing India. It will play a small but important role in the next election.
Wrongdoing by Murdoch’s British newspapers was “next to nothing.” Says Murdoch.
Economics should be more like other sciences. And economists should have to replicate their findings before publication.
The US government uses surveillance like the mafia uses violence. The mere threat is enough to “extort” good behavior out of the masses.
No more volume control. Apple has a patent on earphones that automatically adjust output based on how well they fit your ear.
There’s more to your flight number than just numbers. Here’s what each digit means.
A random stranger accidentally became a Zynga customer-service rep. With hilarious results.
How to find France’s intelligence headquarters. Hint: It’s the big building that’s blurred out on Google Maps.
It can pay to be a bully. Many workplace bullies get high ratings from bosses and do well in their careers.