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What to watch for today
The UN considers the North Korean missile launch problem. The group’s security council will meet behind closed doors, at the request of France, Germany, and the UK, to discuss how to best restart conversations on denuclearizing the peninsula.
An election in Wales makes Boris Johnson uneasy. If the MP seat—formerly held by Johnson’s Conservative party—is turned over to the opposition, it narrows the already shaky Tory majority in Parliament to a single member.
The other US Democrats debate. Expect the usual red and blue attire, interruptions, and thists as 10 more presidential candidates take the stage on night two of the second round of showdowns. Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, and Andrew Yang are among the debaters in Detroit, starting at 8pm EST (8am HKT).
While you were sleeping
The Fed cut interest rates. In the first cut since the financial crisis of 2008, the US central bank, as expected, dropped its benchmark rate by 25 basis points, signaling concern over a slowing economy.
Iran’s foreign minister Javad Zarif was hit with US sanctions. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the sanctions are tied to “recent behavior.” Zarif swiftly responded with a tweet insisting that the sanctions would have “no effect on me or my family, as I have no property or interests outside of Iran.”
US-China trade talks wrapped, temporarily. Despite a mid-conference tweetstorm by US president Donald Trump that criticized Chinese trade practices, the White House reported that the Shanghai meeting was “constructive.” Chinese state media said they’d be reconvening in DC in September.
Chinese billionaire Liu Zhongtian was indicted by the US. The former chief of metals giant Zhongwang has been accused of avoiding $1.8 billion in tariffs by disguising aluminum exports as finished pallets, which are exempt. The company itself and other individuals and shell companies were also named in the indictment.
Spotify’s pared-back app paid off. At least, that’s what the company credited with boosting its latest quarter, although it did miss the mark with paid subscribers. Spotify Lite, a slimmed-down app available in 36 markets, is geared towards customers with limited phone storage and internet bandwidth.
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30 years after it opened, it’s nearly impossible to have a conversation about the history of global contemporary art that does not—with respect, or skepticism, or both—mention Les Magiciens de La Terre. Go on a deep dive with reporter Annalisa Merelli about the Paris exhibition that changed the art scene forever.
Claw cranes are full of promise. The ubiquitous arcade games contain heaps of brightly colored plush toys—and the occasional iPhone—locked in a plexiglass box and waiting for liberation via a metal claw. But are they mere games, or are they a form of gambling? The Quartz Obsession rolls the dice.
Matters of debate
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Don’t watch the Democratic debate. The election is still 460 days away, so use this step-by-step guide to avoid tonight’s theatrics.
Just add water. Dehydrated goods take up less space, use less packaging, and might just save the world.
No one knows basic math. This equation doesn’t have large figures or exotic symbols, but it’s still managed to divide the internet.
The golden years are turning into blackout sessions. Binge drinking among seniors is on the rise.
Woodstock 50 is dust in the wind. A planned anniversary celebration of the iconic three days of peace and music has been officially called off.
Do kids like beards? It’s complicated. Children identify bearded men as older, stronger, but much less attractive than their clean-shaven counterparts.
Mustard-flavored ice cream has its first (and possibly last) hurrah. An LA-based ice cream shop is celebrating National Mustard Day by offering free scoops.
Fortnite’s main rival is coming to China. Electronic Arts stock spiked after announcing Apex Legends will enter the tough-to-crack market.
Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, Woodstock stories, and just regular old chocolate ice cream, please, 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.