What to watch for today
Hershey assesses market conditions in China. Investors are braced for more disappointment as the candy maker reports quarterly earnings, but they will also be looking for an update on Shanghai Golden Monkey Food. The company plans to reassess the subsidiary’s value as it prepares to acquire the remaining 20% stake it doesn’t own next month.
Cablevision details its cord-cutting problems. The US cable provider is expected to report a drop in subscribers as more viewers get their TV fix from the internet. Investors will be hoping the company has a plan to counter the falling customer base. Media stocks were hit hard on Thursday on cord-cutting fears.
Brazilian inflation may be sky-high. Consumer prices are expected to have risen by 9.5% in July from a year earlier, the highest in over a decade. That would put plenty of pressure on the central bank to hike the cost of borrowing.
The US serves up July jobs numbers. With the Federal Reserve expected to raise interest rates in September, the unemployment figures are even more consequential than usual.
While you were sleeping
North Korea announced a new time zone. The isolated dictatorship will put its clocks back by 30 minutes to mark its freedom from Japanese imperialism at the end of World War II. From Aug. 15, North Korea will be 8.5 hours ahead of GMT, breaking from its current nine hours ahead, which South Korea adheres to. Its other neighbour, China, is eight hours ahead.”
HTC worried investors. The Taiwanese smartphone maker’s stock price fell by the maximum 10% after it forecast third-quarter sales as low as NT$19 billion ($600 million), against expectations of NT$36.8 billion. The company said its losses would be far deeper than expected, and promised to slash jobs.
Dalian Wanda is mulling an Ironman purchase. The Chinese property giant is in exclusive talks to purchase (for about $850 million) World Triathlon Corp, the parent of the popular triathlon event, according to Reuters. The company recently expanded into global soccer via the purchase of broadcast rights and teams.
France planned an expanded search for MH370 debris. Investigators will conduct air, land, and sea searches for more debris that may belong to the missing Malaysia Airlines flight 370, after a wing piece was confirmed to be from a Boeing 777, the same model as the missing plane. But French authorities are yet to confirm whether the piece is from the missing plane.
Germany’s industrial production took a surprise tumble… Output fell by 1.4% in June and exports dropped by 1%, compared with an expected rise. That dip is likely a fallout from lower demand for goods from China; other projections for the year remained positive, thanks in part to a strong business confidence survey for July.
…and rose in Spain. The crisis-hit economy reported a whopping 4.5% increase in industrial production (paywall), well above May’s 3.8% increase and above expectations. Spanish output also beat France’s meager rise, and adds to a raft of positive data (paywall) that are making the country look good; much-needed news given its massive unemployment problems.
The UK labor market took a beating. Starting salaries for permanent jobs grew at the slowest pace in 18 months in July, according to Recruitment and Employment Confederation figures. Companies also reported hiring staff at the slowest rate in two years, potentially adding pressure on the central bank, which intends to raise interest rates sooner rather than later.
Quartz obsession interlude
Adam Epstein remembers Jon Stewart’s serious moments on “The Daily Show.” “It was not all jokes, all the time. After all, tragedy and comedy are two sides of the same coin, and Stewart knew exactly when—and how—to use each side. The fact that Stewart could navigate sensitive situations so delicately only made the laughs hit even harder when they came.” Read more here.
Matters of debate
The US should not have bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki 70 years ago… A warning bomb over Tokyo Bay would have sufficed.
…or the US should be pleased it did—the act was lifesaving. Japan would not surrender after Hiroshima, but it did after Nagasaki (paywall).
China has followed Singapore’s path but missed the most important lesson. It’s impossible to understand Singapore’s success without government constraint (paywall).
Spending time online isn’t all bad for teenagers. Their virtual connections strengthen friendships offline.
Howard Schultz is the liberal answer to Donald Trump. The Starbucks chief ticks all the same boxes as the inflammatory Republican.
Some Turkish workers are given time off for exercise. They are allowed to turn up late if they’ve been working out.
Drug dealers will turn each other in if you ask nicely. US police have found success with a simple Facebook request.
Selfies are habit-forming. When surveyed, 13% of Brits from the ages of 16 to 24 said they take at least one self-portrait a day.
Robot-human warfare has already begun. The Canadian hitchhiking bot was not the only victim.
Valuable health data is being flushed down airplane toilets. Analysis of passenger poop could help track global disease outbreaks.
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