What to watch for today
Apple and Samsung butt heads again. Jury selection begins in the latest patent lawsuit between the tech giants, with Apple accusing Samsung of stealing its “slide to unlock” feature, among others. Samsung is counter-suing, and says it licensed the necessary patents from Google (paywall).
Janet Yellen explains herself. Two weeks ago, the chair of the US Federal Reserve suggested that rates may rise as early as next spring. She has yet to offer any further details, but in a speech in Chicago, she may well do.
The specter of deflation in the euro zone. Analysts expect the flash consumer price index to drop to 0.6%. That would be the sixth straight sixth month in the European Central Bank’s “danger zone,” which might prompt some action from the bank at its Thursday policy meeting.
Obamacare’s enrollment deadline. After reaching its 6 million target last week, the US government expects to see almost 7 million people enrolled in Obamacare by the end of the day. People without insurance could be fined 1% of their income, but that isn’t prompting everyone to jump on board.
Over the weekend
Climate change is hitting the world’s food supply. Yields of the staple crops wheat, rice and corn have already declined due to hotter temperatures, an intergovernmental climate panel warned, with bigger declines to come.
Erdogan survived a vote. With two-thirds of the votes counted, the Turkish prime minister’s AK Party had around 45% compared to the opposition’s 27%. In a victory speech, the PM promised to make his opposition “pay,” presaging further purges in the military, police, judiciary, and the media.
Alibaba ventured offline. The Chinese online giant announced a $692 million investment in Intime Retail Group, which operates dozens of large shopping centres in China. The two companies will together create department stores, shopping malls, and supermarkets designed around the concept of online-to-offline retailing.
Huawei profits surged. The Chinese telecom equipment maker’s annual net income rose 36% to 21 billion yuan ($3.4 billion) as it became the second-largest smartphone maker behind Samsung and Apple.
Glencore got one step closer to its iron ore dream. The mining giant signed a $1 billion deal with Mauritania for access to its railway and port facilities (paywall), ending two years of negotiations. Iron ore is a key profit maker for Glencore’s rivals, and represents 25% of the west African country’s economy.
Taiwanese protestors said it with flowers. Wearing black and clutching sunflowers as symbols of hope, more than 100,000 people rallied in Taipei against a deal that would open up China-Taiwan trade.
Cuba took a giant leap towards capitalism. Havana’s rubber-stamp parliament approved a bill that halves taxes on profits to 15% and exempts new investors from paying taxes for eight years.
Quartz obsession interlude
Tim Fernholz on why the rich keep getting richer, as explained by pop culture. “Modern pop culture tends to portray America as a meritocracy, where people with special skills do well. [French economist Thomas] Piketty illustrates this by turning to American television, citing the medical mystery-solving of House, the forensic investigators of Bones, and the brainy politicos of West Wing, with a president who has won the economics Nobel […] This meritocratic pop culture is behind the times, Piketty argues.” Read more here.
Matters of debate
French food is a shadow of its former self. But foreigners are breathing new life into moribund cuisine.
We’re making a big mistake with big data. Massive “found” data sets are vulnerable to sample bias.
Pretentious job titles are worth something. Thanks to the rise of LinkedIn, your title is now more than ever a status symbol (paywall).
Hot streaks exist. Not just in sports—the concept of the hot hand works in finance, too.
The US government could save $136 million a year if it switched to Garamond font. A 14-year-old kid from Pittsburgh figured it out.
Sparkling wine will get you drunkest on the fewest calories. These charts prove it.
You can tell a man’s intelligence by looking at his face. It doesn’t work on women, though.
This pill makes your brain return to a child-like state. It allows an adult to pick up new skills faster, which can help treat developmental disorders—and lazy eye.
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