What to watch for today
Apple and Samsung go head-to-head. The tech giants face off in US federal court—again—in a new trial to determine what damages Apple is owed after winning a patent infringement case against Samsung last summer. Samsung could also be in trouble for leaking confidential documents Apple disclosed in court.
Russia speeds up. Russia’s economic growth is expected to have accelerated for the first time in seven quarters, ending a year and a half of the worst slowdown the country has seen since its 2009 recession. That would lend credibility to a central bank policy of keeping inflation down rather than stimulating growth.
Indian oil goes on sale. The Indian government begins its roadshow in the US and London to sell its 10% stake in Indian Oil Corp, the nation’s largest oil firm, which could fetch some 39 billion rupees ($616 million), part of a 400-billion-rupee divestment program. The shares would likely hit the market in early December.
EU leaders tackle youth unemployment. Germany’s Angela Merkel and France’s François Hollande will discuss how to deal with Europe’s soaring youth unemployment, which is as high as 50% in some countries.
While you were sleeping
The Philippines declared a state of calamity. More than 9 million people have been affected by Typhoon Haiyan’s rampage through the Philippines, with up to 10,000 believed dead and many more waiting for aid, which is arriving slowly due to damaged roads and airports.
Chinese shoppers went crazy online. Internet sales in China on “singles day” surpassed those of the US’s Cyber Monday (the Monday after Thanksgiving) and had reached $5.4 billion by 11pm local time, as millions of Chinese shoppers took advantage of online sales.
BSkyB lost its soccer broadcasting rights. Shares in BSkyB dropped almost 11% after the British TV company lost the rights to live-broadcast the Champions League and Europe League soccer games. The three-year exclusive deal went to BT Sport for $1.4 billion.
Iran got blamed for failed nuclear talks. US secretary of state John Kerry said negotiations between six world powers and Iran over the weekend ended without fruit because Iran wasn’t ready to agree, playing down reports that France had scuppered progress (paywall).
The EU and US kissed and made up. European and US officials resumed talks on a trans-Atlantic free-trade agreement despite angry protests in Europe over reports that the US had spied on European leaders. The discussions had already been postponed because of last month’s US government shutdown.
More evidence that newspapers aren’t good business. News Corp’s revenues missed expectations, in the publishing company’s first earnings report since it separated from the more lucrative entertainment businesses, now called 21st Century Fox, in July.
Quartz obsession interlude
Roberto A. Ferdman on what Typhoon Haiyan will do to Philippine agriculture. “The Philippines is the world’s largest per capita consumer of rice, but it’s been making strides towards self-sufficiency. Rice imports have declined in each of the past five years since hitting a record 2.6 million tonnes in 2008. Estimates for 2013/2014 were hovering around 1.5 million tonnes before the typhoon, but are likely to rise in its aftermath, pushing global prices up.” Read more here.
Matters of debate
It’s OK to have “dictator envy” from time to time. Democracies historically do better in the long run, but it’s hard not to envy dictators their ability to act quickly and decisively in a crisis.
France gets a bad rap. Fiscally, it’s doing OK, but basing its fiscal policy on tax increases rather than spending cuts isn’t fashionable (paywall).
Should people be allowed to buy soda with food stamps? Obesity is growing despite shrinking food budgets—perhaps because soda is cheaper and easier to buy than fresh and healthy foods.
Sleep isn’t just for the weak. Western culture dismisses sleep as a waste of time, but lack of sleep undercuts productivity and contributes to expensive health problems.
A church of non-believers. Atheist mega-churches are springing up around the US, creating communities for people who don’t believe in God.
Google’s creepiest patent yet. It’s an electronic neck tattoo, meant to eliminate background noise on phone calls, but it also turns orange when you sweat, revealing when you’re lying.
Chinese banker babies. A Hong Kong pre-school is tracking the financial markets on a whiteboard in its playroom.
Millennials and the 1% have similar spending habits. Both groups spend on experiences, rather than stuff.
He’s a very naughty boy. Notes detailing John Lennon’s detentions at school are up for auction.
Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, neck tattoos and detention tales to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can follow us on Twitter here for updates during the day.