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What to watch for today and over the weekend
China reports on trade. Projections put Chinese exports down 2% from June of 2018, before the country’s trade disputes with the US reached its current fever pitch. Tariffs and slowing demand are expected to have taken a greater toll than China’s frontloaded shipments could offset.
London hosts Wimbledon and Cricket World Cup finals. Serena Williams faces Simona Halep on Saturday, while the men wrap up their semi-finals Friday and compete for the singles championship Sunday. Meanwhile, England and New Zealand will battle for glory in the final match of the 2019 Cricket World Cup—it’s been 27 years since England has gotten this far in the tournament, and neither team has ever won.
The first Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank Annual Meeting ever held outside Asia. The event kicks off in Luxembourg with the theme of “cooperation and connectivity,” and is scheduled to last through July 13.
The US could pause North Korean sanctions. According to South Korea’s Yonhap news agency, the Trump administration is considering sanction relief on North Korea’s coal and textile exports for up to 18 months, in exchange for a freeze of the country’s entire nuclear program.
While you were sleeping
A Russian submarine is leaking radiation. Norway’s Institute of Marine Research reported that radiation levels around the site of the 1989 wreckage are up to 800,000 times higher than normal. The news comes one week after 14 Russians were killed during a submarine fire in the Barents Sea.
France passed its tech tax. The GAFA tax—that’s Google, Apple, Facebook, and Amazon—was greenlit by the French parliament despite threats from Washington about reprisal tariffs. The new law charges a 3% tax on revenue generated from French consumers.
Iran tried to seize a British tanker. UK-flagged commercial vessels are on the highest alert after three Iranian boats tried to change the course of an oil tanker called British Heritage. The confrontation ended after a Royal Navy warship directed its weapons towards the Iranian gunships.
The Dow broke 27,000. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed above 27,000 for the first time with the S&P 500 also closing at an all-time record of 2,993. US markets’ recent bull run is largely considered to come alongside the Federal Reserve’s willingness to cut rates.
Amazon retrains its workforce. The e-commerce giant announced that, due to advances in robotics and automation, it plans to spend $700 million to retrain a third of its US workforce. The program is estimated to cover 100,000 workers by 2025.
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In today’s member exclusives, Quartz’s continues its deep dive into the data boom with an investigation about how easy it can be to identify patients even when medical records are anonymized. We also continue our insights with Brandless founder Tina Sharkey, who in our latest video offers advice on getting employees to believe—and crucially, act—on a company’s mission.
Cricket is (arguably) the world’s second biggest sport, and now it’s big business. The major cricket countries contain nearly 2 billion people; the TV rights for the Indian Premier League just sold for $2.5 billion; and a billion sports fans reportedly watched a recent India-Pakistan match in the World Cup. But there are growing pains in the gentleman’s sport. Hit the stumps at the Quartz Obsession.
Matters of debate
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Personalized learning doesn’t work. The latest education technology cure-all from Silicon Valley fails to live up to the hype.
Get your family on Slack. Busy families are using product management software to make sure everyone gets to practice on time.
Robots are coming for your parental rights. The communal parenting argued for by philosophers from Aristotle to Marx could be a reality, but not the way they imagined.
Keyboards could be a weak link for secure air-gapped systems. A data thief would need to install malware, then optically monitor and decode the resulting LED blinks under certain keys—but it’s possible.
Metallica is for kids. The heavy metal band’s illustrated children’s book, called The ABCs of Metallica, will be published in November.
Dungeon masters are swimming in gold. Thanks to throwback series like Stranger Things, a professional DM can make hundreds leading a Dungeons & Dragons adventure.
Snacks are in high demand. Since 11 US states and the District of Columbia have legalized recreational weed, sales of munchie-satisfiers are on the rise.
A freakishly long-toed bird leg was found in amber. The 99-million-year-old specimen had a toe-to-leg ratio never before seen by scientists.
Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, Slayer cartoons, and birds flipping the bird to email@example.com. Join the next chapter of Quartz by downloading our app and becoming a member. Today’s Daily Brief was written and edited by Susan Howson and Max Lockie.