Quartz Daily Brief—Europe and Africa edition—Apple disappoints, Microsoft’s major loss, NYC airport strike, “dad bod” science

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What to watch for today

New York airport workers go on strike. LaGuardia and JFK-based employees of Aviation Safeguard, which contracts with airlines to provide security officers and baggage handlers, plan to strike at 10pm EST. Delta might be the most heavily affected airline.

New hope in the fight against Alzheimer’s? Eli Lilly and Biogen present new data on the degenerative brain disease at a conference in Washington, DC. Biogen will unveil results of a trial using a smaller, safer dose of a proven drug; Lilly will announce whether it has found a way to make its drug solanezumab slow down the progression the disease.

Brazil updates its inflation data. Analysts expect consumer prices to rise by over 9% in July from a year earlier. Inflation has spiked in Latin America’s largest economy after president Dilma Rousseff hiked utility rates and other prices, worsening the country’s worst recession in 25 years.

Another round of earnings. Boeing, Coca-Cola, AmEx, Discover, Cemex, and many more are due to report quarterly results.

While you were sleeping

Apple missed estimates. The gadget maker’s fiscal third-quarter net income rose to $10.7 billion, from $7.8 billion, beating expectations on an earnings-per-share basis. But a strong rise in China sales was offset by a fourth-quarter revenue forecast of $49 billion to $51 billion, marginally lower than expected but enough to send shares tumbling.

Microsoft suffered its biggest-ever quarterly loss. The software company reported a net loss of $3.2 billion for its fiscal fourth quarter, after taking a $7.5 billion charge in the restructuring of its Nokia handset division. But subscriptions to its cloud-based services rose sharply and, excluding the Nokia write-down, earnings per share beat expectations.

Yahoo warned of lower revenues. The cost of attracting traffic to the internet giant’s sites rose in the second quarter to $200.2 million, from $43.8 million a year earlier. But revenue remained flat and was even forecast to decline in the third quarter; shares dipped slightly.

Aussie inflation came in lower than expected. Consumer prices rose 1.5% in the second quarter compared to a year earlier, up from the first quarter’s 1.3% increase but lower than analysts expected. That could give the central bank leeway to lower the cost of borrowing from its already record low, despite concerns about a potential housing bubble.

China’s business sentiment went negative. The MNI China Business Indicator dropped 8.8% in July to 48.8 (paywall), a reading below the 50 mark that separates optimism from pessimism. That could suggest the recent stock market correction is denting business confidence, adding to long-term concerns over deflationary pressures.

Quartz obsession interlude

Sonali Kohli on bedtime stories from space. “Tribe came up with the idea to have astronauts read children’s stories from the International Space Station in 2010. She and Drew decided on the Max Goes to the Moon series by author Jeffrey Bennett, an astrophysicist and former college professor and elementary school teacher, as the books that the astronauts would read.” Read more here.

Matters of debate

El Chapo’s escape from prison was no surprise. The Mexican government wanted the drug kingpin back on the streets.

The future of American political campaigns is public funding. It’s the only way to stop corruption.

Mindful meditation cultivates compassion. It’s good for practitioners and everyone around them.

The US has got the penal system all wrong. Prisoners are not either “violent” or “nonviolent.”

Surprising discoveries

Angolan elephants are expert minefield navigators. Not even dogs can match their sense of smell.

You can learn poker from an MIT professor. ”Poker Theory and Analytics” is the university’s latest free online class.

“Dad bod” is a scientific fact. A pudgy-around-the-middle build is strongly correlated with fatherhood.

The winner of the French Scrabble championship does not speak French. He memorized the French dictionary.

Robot surgeons have a rising body count. A new study tallied 144 deaths from 1.7 million procedures since 2000.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, poker theories, and Scrabble strategies to You can follow us on Twitter for updates throughout the day.

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