What to watch for today
The US economy is still hurting. GDP growth is expected to slow to 2% in the third quarter, compared with 2.5% in the quarter before. On Friday, jobs data are expected to show an uptick in unemployment too, which could lead the US Federal Reserve to delay its “tapering” of loose monetary policy.
The ECB chooses optimism. Economists expect the European Central Bank to keep interest rates unchanged as Europe shows flickers of recovery. But falling inflation could mean the bank uses one of its last remaining rate cuts in December.
Twitter’s first day of trading. Twitter is expected to price its IPO within hours, and will begin trading on the NYSE on Thursday morning. Latest reports suggest the price will be $25-$28 per share (paywall), valuing Twitter at between $14 billion and $16 billion. All eyes will be on the first day’s trading after Facebook’s IPO debacle.
Japan debates how many secrets to keep. The parliament considers a bill that would give the government sweeping secrecy powers similar to those in the US. The measures would help it cooperate with its American ally but have drawn a backlash.
Typhoon Haiyan hits the Philippines. It could pack steady winds of up to 135 knots (250km per hour), which would make it the world’s strongest storm this year.
While you were sleeping
World oil prices may be rigged. Former oil traders have brought a lawsuit with the most detailed allegations yet of price-fixing for Brent crude. With allegations also swirling around Libor, Euribor, swaps and exchange rates, we ask, is any international benchmark free of manipulation these days?
But I wanted to buy BlackBerry! Former Apple CEO John Sculley announced that he had been putting together a bid for the struggling smartphone maker and was surprised when it took itself off the market on Monday.
Internet killed the video store. Blockbuster is closing the last of its US stores—here’s a brief, illustrated history of its demise.
More fines for European banks. The EU is reportedly preparing to fine six banks, including Barclays and RBS, at least €1.5 billion ($2.03 billion) for manipulating the yen Libor interest rate benchmark.
A peace deal came closer in Colombia. Talks between the government and FARC rebels reached agreement on allowing former rebels to enter politics, a keystone of any deal to end the five-decade conflict.
Quartz obsession interlude
John McDuling on the risks in Twitter’s IPO that no one seems to care about. “In the run up to Twitter’s much-anticipated IPO, the company has done its utmost to distance itself from the troubles that beset Facebook when it went public. But one risk Wall Street may be overlooking is how the supply of Twitter shares will be made available for sale. The supply of Twitter shares is set to increase dramatically in the months following the company’s IPO.” Read more here.
Matters of debate
The way to stop climate change is to stop subsidizing it. A UN meeting in Warsaw next week should agree to end subsidies to fossil-fuel industries instead of talking about cleantech and carbon markets.
China is good for Africa. The common view of China as an exploitative imperialist power doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.
Let your sales and marketing teams fight—a little bit. A bit of creative tension between their differing conceptions of the customer can be productive.
Edward Snowden faces a sad and lonely future. Like Philip Agee, an early CIA whistleblower, he can never return home; unlike Agee, he can’t do much else with his life.
3D printing is the end of Walmart as we know it. Personalized manufacturing won’t just disrupt big manufacturers, but also big retailers.
It’s looking like a crowded universe. There could be 11 billion habitable, earth-size planets in our galaxy.
current dictator’s daughter.
Welcome to Waterworld. Cairo, Alexandria, and all of Bangladesh will be submerged in water if all the world’s ice melts in 5,000 years.
Beijing has more billionaires than Los Angeles. But their numbers may be peaking and could soon fall.
Video games make your brain bigger. Playing Mario 64 increases gray matter—brain tissue for muscle control, memory, and sensory perception.