Quartz Daily Brief—Asia Edition—Cyprus reopens, retailers battle, cyber attack, 50 Nuances de Grey

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What to watch for today

Cypriot banks reopen. Everyone is wondering how bad the rush will be to get money out. The temporary capital controls include a limitation on taking money out of the country—€3,000—and cashing checks, among others.

BlackBerry reports earnings. There’s not a lot of optimism over the launch of the Z10.

Obama meets with African leaders at the White House. As the administration attempts to tacitly reward progress towards democratic reforms.

Brazil’s unemployment numbers, and Germany’s too. After scraping an all-time low of 4.6% in December, the Brazilian jobless rate drifted higher in January. Today will reveal February’s data. Meanwhile, Europe’s largest economy reports on March unemployment, after an unexpected decline in the jobless rate in February.

While you were sleeping

Wal-Mart vs. The world’s biggest retailer, Wal-Mart, announced plans to boost its e-commerce offerings as it goes head-to-head against its online rivals.

Same-sex SCOTUS, round two. Some think gay-rights advocates came a little better out of the second day of arguments, in which key Supreme Court justices questioned whether the federal government has the right to define what marriage is. (Tuesday’s hearing was over whether California has the right to ban same-sex marriages.)

The world’s biggest ever cyber attack. Coming from “a decommissioned, nuclear-war proof NATO bunker with five foot-thick concrete walls and a reputation for harboring spammers and cybercriminals.”

Quartz obsession interlude

Christopher Mims explains why the internet is making us poor. “Like farming and factory work before it, the labors of the mind are being colonized by devices and systems. In the early 1800′s, nine out of ten Americans worked in agriculture—now it’s around 2%. At its peak, about a third of the US population was employed in manufacturing—now it’s less than 10%. How many decades until the figures are similar for the information-processing tasks that typify rich countries’ post-industrial economies?” Read more here.

Matters of debate

Marissa Mayer was right. You should work at the office—but not because it improves productivity.

The end is nigh. Swapping cheap natural gas for petroleum and increasing fuel economy could spell the end of the oil era.

Vengence is mine! There is no difference between vengeance and justice. 

Surprising discoveries

Bitcoin ATMs. They’re apparently coming. To Cyprus.

High and low skills pay the bills. Job growth is expanding in extremely high- and extremely low-skill areas in the US, and that’s a problem.

Assembly required. Foxconn is going to assemble Google Glass in the US.

Railroads spike. American railroads are on a building boom, the likes of which hasn’t been seen since the Gilded Age (paywall).

Vraiment? French women dig 50 Shades of Grey too.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, marriage rulings and 50 Shades translations to You can follow us on Twitter here for updates during the day.

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