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What to watch for today
Uber reports second-quarter earnings. Analysts expect the ride-share giant to struggle to reduce its losses as the costs of increasing competition chip away at the bottom line. Its food-delivery business, UberEats, has also been growing at a significantly slower clip.
The US defense secretary meets senior Mongolian leaders. In a rare visit, Mark Esper will seek to deepen ties with the strategically located nation, which is sandwiched between China and Russia, and best represents the Pentagon’s strategy of countering the two powers.
Narendra Modi speaks up. India’s prime minister is likely to make a national address that is intended to illuminate some of the reasoning behind his government’s heavy-handed decision to scrap Jammu and Kashmir’s special status and reclassify them into two union territories.
While you were sleeping
The US carried out a sweeping immigration raid. Immigration and Customs Enforcement detained 680 undocumented people in raids across six cities in Mississippi, targeting food processing plants. Local officials, including the mayor of Jackson, called the operation “dehumanizing and ineffective,” raising concerns about the fate of the detainees’ children.
The UN issued a dire warning about the world’s food supply. A new report, compiled by experts in over 50 countries, said soil is being lost at a rate 10 to 100 times faster than it is being replenished. It also said there’s a danger of food crises on multiple continents simultaneously, and called for urgent changes to food production and distribution.
China’s exports ticked up. Exports grew at their fastest rate (paywall) in July since March, at a time when the US-China trade spat appeared to ease. But president Trump vowed earlier this month to impose tariffs on an additional $300 billion of Chinese imports, and the US government labelled China a currency manipulator, which could impact future data.
Puerto Rico’s new governor is out, and the new new governor is in. Pedro Pierluisi was sworn in on Friday, but the Puerto Rico Supreme Court unanimously ruled yesterday that he did so unconstitutionally. Justice secretary Wanda Vázquez is now the third person to hold the office in five days, with protests expected to greet her today.
Adidas failed to deliver. While the German sportswear giant met quarterly earnings expectations (paywall), sales disappointed analysts, causing shares to tumble in early trading. Executives say Adidas is on track to solve supply bottleneck issues in the US that have weighed down the company.
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We continue our week-long deep dive on whether technology can make us better parents by taking a look at what early childcare is like in countries that prioritize it. High-quality early childhood education and care has been shown to have benefits that extend way beyond building babies’ brains (as if those aren’t important enough).
It’s the end of the road for the Volkswagen Beetle. After its unlikely evolution from a Nazi invention to a foundation of postwar Europe to a symbol of the counterculture, the Bug earned the loyalty of generations for its price, efficiency, and ease of repair. But after a brief nostalgia kick from the New Beetle, it’s become another victim of the growing SUV and crossover market. Take a look in the rear-view mirror with the Quartz Obsession.
Matters of debate
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AI copywriters pen better ads than humans. And JPMorgan Chase is willing to make that bet.
Music festivals’ gender quotas do more harm than good. Enforcing a 50/50 gender split is not the best way to get more female musicians on stage.
Tweets should be admissible evidence in court. Donald Trump, whose tweets have been used against him, now wants to use his opponents’ tweets against them.
5G technology could mess up weather predictions. The signal strength from 5G antennas affects the frequencies that some satellites use to gather critical water vapor data.
A flaky pastry is a symbol of resistance in Hong Kong. The wife cake has been selling like hotcakes after the neighborhood from which it hails became a scene of a violent mob attack against civilians.
A scientist baked bread with 5,000-year-old yeast found in ancient Egyptian ceramics. The yeast was more active, and the bread smelled like caramel.
Yosemite is sporting pink snow. The coloring at high altitudes is a defense mechanism against heat and UV rays.
Child-sized parrots once roamed New Zealand. However, the birds from 19 million years ago were too big to fly.
Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, accurate weather predictions, and ancient yeast to email@example.com. Join the next chapter of Quartz by downloading our app and becoming a member. Today’s Daily Brief was written by Adam Rasmi and edited by Jason Karaian.