SpaceX’s next trick, Qatar’s brutal to-do list, cheap millennials

Good morning, Quartz readers!

What to watch for today and over the weekend

SpaceX launches two rockets in 48 hours. Elon Musk’s rocket company will show off its ability to carry cargo into space more frequently than its competitors. Meanwhile, India will launch a rocket carrying its 712 kg (1,600 lb) satellite, the Cartostat-2, along with 30 nanosatellites from over a dozen countries.

BlackBerry shares its quarterly results. The Canadian company is morphing from a smartphone maker to a software vendor focused on cybersecurity. Analysts expect a revenue drop of nearly 13% from the previous quarter, but also rapidly rising software sales.

The US releases data on new-home sales. A sharp drop in April suggested possible weakness in the market amid limited inventory and rising prices. But economists expect a rebound for May, with sales increasing about 5.4% (pdf).

While you were sleeping

Isolated Qatar got a list of demands. Four Arab states, including Saudi Arabia and Egypt, have demanded the country shut down broadcaster al-Jazeera, cut ties with Iran, and close a Turkish military base in the next 10 days if it wants sanctions against it to be lifted. The country has been isolated by its neighbors, with all air and land routes shut off, for two weeks now after they accused it of funding terrorism.

Theresa May made a settlement offer to EU citizens living in the UK. The British prime minister reiterated on Friday that EU citizens who have lived in the UK for five years will be able to have a new “settled status” after the country separates from the EU. German chancellor Angela Merkel described May’s offer as a “good start.”

Ireland floated its former bad bank. The government raised €3 billion ($3.3 billion) in the IPO (paywall) of Allied Irish Banks, valuing it at €12 billion. Allied Irish was one of the banks that crashed during the financial crisis and dragged the country into a eurozone-led €21 billion bailout. The government will hold onto around 75% of shares but slowly sell off its stake in the coming years.

The confidante of South Korea’s ousted president was sentenced to jail. Choi Soon-sil will spend three years behind bars for soliciting university favors for her daughter, a court in Seoul ruled. More convictions will likely follow in the influence-peddling scandal that brought down president Park Geun-hye, who is also on trial.

The US stopped imports of Brazilian beef. Agriculture secretary Sonny Perdue said fresh beef from Brazil would be banned until the country upped its standards (paywall). Brazilian meat packers were accused of bribing inspectors to ignore food safety rules in March. The three meat companies affected include JBS, the world’s biggest beef producer and exporter.

Quartz obsession interlude

Corinne Purtill and Dan Kopf on the person we spend the most time with across our lifetimes. “Time with friends, colleagues, siblings, and children diminishes over the course of a lifetime. The older we get, the person we spend the most time with is the one we see in the mirror.” Read more here.

Matters of debate

Robots are gaming human compassion. The push to humanize AI could dehumanize actual people.

Apple’s next big investment could reshape capitalism. Cashing in on Trump’s tax reform laws could fund the largest basic-income trial ever.

Millennials are the cheapest generation. Young people aren’t playing hard to get—they just don’t want your cars or houses.

Surprising discoveries

An ancient Chinese dynasty had foreign slaves. The Shang dynasty exploited non-local labor before beheading them as human sacrifices.

Opioids killed as many Americans last year as the last three US wars combined. Only 10% of addicts get treatment (paywall).

Pesto sauce isn’t a dangerous liquid. The Italian city of Genoa will allow up to half a kilo as carry-on luggage.

One-third of Australian preschoolers own a smartphone or tablet. Parents distract their kids with screens to get their own work done.

The successor to the fidget-spinner is seriously dangerous. Chinese parents are demanding a ban on toothpick crossbows.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, humanized AI, and toothpick crossbows to You can follow us on Twitter for updates throughout the day or download our apps for iPhone and Android.