China’s GDP, falling oil, a mirror universe

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Good morning, Quartz readers!

What to watch for today

Netflix reports fourth-quarter earnings. The global leader in streaming television—now available nearly everywhere on Earth—finished 2015 as one of the year’s best stocks. In 2016, some are skeptical that it can hit subscriber growth estimates.

China releases its latest GDP numbers. Analysts don’t expect much growth. The country’s economy grew 6.9% over the first three quarters of 2015. Its full-year target of 7% would be China’s slowest growth since 1990.

The IMF forecasts the health of the global economy. Leading up the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) releases its World Economic Outlook today. Many expect the IMF to paint a pretty bleak picture.

The US East Coast braces for winter, at last. Eastern states could finally see snowfall as early as Tuesday.

While you were sleeping

WhatsApp is now free. The popular messaging service removed all of its service fees in a key strategy shift. The Facebook-owned app will have to find another way to monetize its 900 million monthly active users.

Novak Djokovic dismissed allegations of match fixing in tennis. The BBC and BuzzFeed News obtained secret files that contained evidence of match fixing, but the world’s number one player, who admits having been offered money to throw matches early in his career, says it’s “just speculation.”

Another horrifying ISIL atrocity is suspected. The terror group appears to have abducted 400 civilians from the town of Deir Ezzor, Syria. Human rights groups fear they have been executed

Spike Lee and Jada Pinkett Smith are boycotting the Oscars. The director, who received an honorary Oscar in November, says he wants no part of the ceremony this year, and actress Pinkett-Smith released a video statement. For the second year in a row, every single acting nominee is white.

Brent crude fell to its lowest price since 2003. Iran is expected to ramp up oil exports, adding some 500,000 barrels a day to an already-saturated market. International sanctions against the country were lifted last week.

Quartz obsession interlude

Cassie Werber on why the future of work is dark for women. “Job losses resulting from automation will hit women harder than men, by making obsolete jobs—such as many office functions—which they currently do.” Read more here.

Matters of debate

China has to stop manipulating markets. Intervention should be the exception, not the norm.

It’s time to rethink the Geneva refugee convention. Technology and trafficking have changed how migration works.

France is in an economic state of emergency. The solution is to spend a couple billion euros.

Consumers shouldn’t have to shop ethically. Sustainable and ethical principles can be built into the supply chain.

Surprising discoveries

Russian and Japanese travelers are avoiding France. Tourism dropped after the Paris attacks in November.

This football field in Lagos is foot-powered. Tiles under the grass collect kinetic energy.

There’s a mirror universe where time moves backwards. Scientists speculate it was created in the Big Bang.

People trust Google news more than actual news. Even though it’s the same news.

You can rent this island in the Philippines by the week. It’ll cost $30,000 to $60,000.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, mirror universes and serviced islands to You can follow us on Twitter for updates throughout the day.

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