What to watch for today
Tesla rolls in greenbacks. Analysts expect the electric-car maker to report full-year earnings per share of $0.62 on revenues of $2.38 billion, but investors will be watching closely for sales figures and profit margins. In November CEO Elon Musk said he felt comfortable that Tesla could hit a 25% margin in the fourth quarter, and analysts seem to agree.
More jobs in the UK, but what kind? The unemployment figure will be subject to extra scrutiny after falling recently to 7.1%, forcing the Bank of England to reassess its targets for raising interest rates. But a lot of those newly employed people are actually underemployed or underpaid (paywall).
Why the Fed voted for further tapering. The US central bank releases minutes from its January meeting, which should show which of its governors supported the further $10 billion reduction in monthly bond-buying and whether the global selloff in emerging markets was a factor in the decision.
The meeting of the Three Amigos. The American, Canadian and Mexican presidents meet in Toluca, Mexico, for what has come to be known as the Three Amigos summit. The agenda will focus on trade and security, and the Keystone Pipeline, the $5.4 billion US-Canadian oil project that Barack Obama blocked, is sure to get a mention.
While you were sleeping
A sweet new listing for the NYSE. King Digital Entertainment, the Irish company behind the Candy Crush Saga game, announced its intention to go public in New York. Its IPO filing revealed the company made $568 million last year on revenue of $1.9 billion—78% of which came from Candy Crush.
Coca Cola’s profits lacked fizz. The soft drinks giant posted a 8.4% profit decline for its fourth quarter, and 3.6% fall in revenue, dragged down by weak sales in North America, where people are turning away from sugary drinks. It also announced plans to cut $1 billion in spending this fiscal year.
A big drugs deal swelled Carl Icahn’s pockets. The activist investor is the second-largest shareholder in Forest Laboratories, the pharmaceutical firm that drugmaker Actavis is buying for $89.48 per share, making a total offer of about $25 billion in cash and stock.
Violence escalated in Ukraine… At least 10 people died when Ukrainian police tried to break up an anti-government demonstration in Kiev. As of this writing, the two sides were continuing to clash in the capital’s main square. (A live feed is here.)
…and protests continued in Venezuela. Demonstrators turned out en masse after Leopoldo López, a Venezuelan opposition leader, turned himself in to the authorities, having said that he would do so only if the protests continued.
Quartz obsession interlude
Leo Mirani on how a wave of buy-outs could save India’s ungainly telecoms market. “[E]ven with 886 million subscribers between them, Indian mobile network operators struggle to turn a profit… There are many reasons for this, among them the fact that most Indian subscribers are poor and spend on little apart from voice calls and texts. But the biggest culprit is competition: Far too many mobile operators compete in diverse areas of the country for scraps of the market. Few telcos can boast all-India coverage. And while this is great for consumers, it’s unsustainable for the industry.” Read more here.
Matters of debate
Philip Seymour Hoffman’s death is an argument for legalizing heroin. Regulating hard drugs would save more lives than prohibiting them.
Cyprus’s bailout didn’t solve one of its basic problems. A year and a half later the island is still a big destination for rich Russians trying to hide their cash.
We’re underestimating the economic cost of climate change. The economic models are flawed in a similar way to the ones that failed to foresee the 2008 financial crisis (paywall).
Both the right and the left in America are wrong about raising the minimum wage. It won’t destroy many jobs but it won’t be cost-free either.
It’s a good time to be a dictator. Despite knowing more than ever about human-rights abuses, the world is too apathetic and intervention-weary to act against them.
Financial markets love breakfast. Prices for commodities such as coffee, oats, bacon and orange juice are rising.
India has racist crayons. A man is suing Hindustan Pencils for marketing a peach-colored crayon as “skin color.”
What goes on behind closed doors at a Wall Street secret society. Basically everything you’d expect.
Google Maps missed a spot. As far as the internet is concerned, Cranberry, Pennsylvania, doesn’t exist.
Glasgow University students elected Edward Snowden as their rector. The NSA whistleblower will be standing up for their rights from his Russia hideout, presumably.
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