Quartz Daily Brief—Europe and Africa edition—California water restrictions, GoDaddy IPO pops, McDonald’s salary bump, bovine mugshots

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What to watch for today

The Iran talks deadline—third time lucky? After six world powers and Iran missed their March 31 deadline to reach a framework agreement about the future of Iran’s nuclear program, it got pushed to April 1. Now talks are extended another day, to April 2, and people are starting to focus what will happen if a deal proves yet again to be unattainable.

British prime ministerial wannabes debate. PM David Cameron and six other candidates, including Labour’s Ed Miliband, will face off ahead of the May 7 general election in the second of four scheduled debates. Polls say Cameron won the first contest last week.

Europe prepares antitrust charges against Google. The European Commission has asked several companies for permission to publish confidential complaints against the US search giant, according to the Wall Street Journal (paywall). That suggests the European Union’s executive body is preparing formal antitrust charges, after sparring for years with Google over its market dominance.

Delphi discusses the self-driving future. The car parts maker will probably use its annual investor meeting to talk about its latest publicity stunt: adding self-driving technology to an Audi SQ5 and driving it across the United States. The SUV arrived this week for the New York Auto Show.

While you were sleeping

GoDaddy’s IPO popped. The domain name registrar’s shares shot up by more than 30% after trading opened on the NYSE, valuing the company at nearly $5.5 billion. As of last year, GoDaddy looked after 59 million domain names—roughly one fifth of the world’s total.

McDonald’s is giving 90,000 employees a raise. Beginning July 1, wages at the 1,500 US restaurants that are directly owned by the burger chain will be raised to at least $1 over the prevailing minimum wage. But workers at the remaining 14,350 McDonald’s outlets, which are owned by franchisees, won’t get the same benefits (paywall).

A drought-stricken California imposed historic water restrictions. Governor Jerry Brown ordered mandatory water usage rules for the first time, aiming to reduce consumption by 25%. A study last month predicted that California, which produces half the US’s fruit, vegetables and nuts, faces the prospect of droughts nearly every year for the foreseeable future.

Kraft was accused of fixing the wheat market. The food giant and its former corporate parent Mondalez was accused of manipulating wheat prices in a lawsuit by the US commodities regulator. Kraft is a heavy consumer of wheat for products including Oreo cookies and Wheat Thins crackers.

Fighting intensified in the Yemeni city of Aden. Rebel Houthi fighters backed by tanks entered the pivotal port city and are battling a Saudi-led military coalition, backed by the United States, that is trying to restore the government to power.

Quartz obsession interlude

Matt Phillips on South America’s stunning financial performance. “It’s not an April Fool’s joke. Amid economic disorder and collapsing confidence, stock markets in Venezuela and Argentina are soaring. They were up 32% and 26% respectively during the first quarter, making them some of the best-performing stock markets on the planet.” Read more here.

Matters of debate

McDonald’s doesn’t believe in social justice. The chain only gave workers a raise because the labor market is finally tightening.

Trevor Noah’s bad jokes should get a pass. The new Daily Show host, like all comedians, has to push the boundaries of good taste.

Walmart has made a remarkable journey on gay rights. The conservative retailer is opposing an Arkansas “religious freedom” bill.

Note-taking should be done by hand. Using a computer to take notes turns students into stenographers.

Farms aren’t very green. Modern farming generates a huge quantity of plastic trash, and just 10% is recycled.

Surprising discoveries

China’s politicians are learning to drive. Government austerity measures have forced officials to fire their chauffeurs.

An apple a day doesn’t do much. The 10% of Americans who consume the fruit daily are just as likely to be hospitalized as those who don’t.

A Kim Jong-un impersonator scored at a Hong Kong rugby tournament. He “made out with ’30 to 40′ girls” (paywall) at the booze-soaked event.

Indian police are collecting cow mugshots. Maharashtra state cops asked farmers for photos to help enforce a ban on beef sales.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, self-driving tips, and bovine mug shots to You can follow us on Twitter here for updates throughout the day.

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