Quartz Daily Brief—Europe and Africa edition—Refugee talks, turmoil in Brazil, real unicorns

We may earn a commission from links on this page.

What to watch for today

UN real talk on refugees. Officials will discuss solutions to the refugee crisis in Geneva, including pledges by developed countries to take in displaced Syrians. The UN’s refugee agency has warned that one in 10 Syrian refugees will have to be resettled before the end of 2018.

US employment numbers. Payrolls processor ADP is expected to report (pdf) that private employers in the US added 194,000 jobs this month, after adding 214,000 jobs in February.

Micron Technology reports earnings. For its latest quarter the maker of memory chips is expected to report (pdf) revenue slightly below estimates, due to weak demand and lower average selling prices for chips used in personal computers.

While you were sleeping

Dilma Rousseff was left high and dry by a key partner. The Brazilian Democratic Movement Party (PMDB) said it would leave the coalition government ahead of likely impeachment hearings against Brazil’s president. Rousseff’s popularity has plummeted as Brazil sinks deeper into its worst economic crisis in decades.

Japan reported weak industrial production. Fears of a recession grew after numbers showed factory output in February falling 6.2% month-on-month—the biggest drop since March 2011, when an earthquake disrupted supply chains.

Air New Zealand said it might sell its stake in Virgin Australia. It’s the biggest shareholder in the struggling local airline, with a 25.9% stake worth $322 million (paywall). Sales of Virgin Australia shares were halted ahead of the announcement.

Donald Trump dropped his pledge to back a Republican other than himself for US president. Saying he’s been treated “very unfairly” by the party establishment, he made the announcement during a television town hall in Wisconsin.

Spotify launched in Indonesia. The world’s fourth most-populous country is a new battleground for streaming music, with Spotify and Apple Music facing off against several local services. The company is reportedly also looking at entering Japan and India.

Quartz markets haiku

The great silver dove,
Yellen flaps in the face of
all those sullen hawks

Quartz obsession interlude

Alice Truong on the developer who has Airbnb-hopped for the last three years. “He sets a monthly budget of roughly $1,400 to $1,500 for the Bay Area… the median rent for a 1-bedroom apartment in San Francisco was $3,500, the highest in the country, according to apartment-listing site Zumper.” Read more.

Matters of debate

The difference between a Christian gunman and a Muslim jihadist is racism. The media has its own definition of terrorism.

The FBI-Apple showdown is a disaster for the Feds. The government sought a legal precedent, but exposed its own incompetence (paywall).

The return of old diseases is not just because of anti-vaxxers. Governments aren’t doing enough to make vaccinations available.

Surprising discoveries

Cultures that love minimalism are the most wasteful. The Danes, Dutch, Swiss, and Germans are the world’s most wasteful countries.

An Angolan rapper was imprisoned for plotting a coup at his book club. The group was discussing nonviolent resistance.

Unicorns were real just 29,000 years ago. But they probably looked more like rhinos than horses.

Men’s underwear is an economic indicator. Alan Greenspan theorizes that men put off buying undies if money is tight.

One in five employees would happily sell their work passwords. Good luck, corporate security managers.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, Airbnb tips, and underwear deals to And download our new iPhone app for news throughout the day.qz_email_list_425047646_post_message