Brexit crunch time, emperor’s new throne, rat-eating monkeys

Good morning, Quartz readers!

What to watch for today

Boris Johnson makes a last push for an Oct. 31 Brexit. Now that his government has published (pdf) the full withdrawal agreement, the British prime minister hopes enough MPs will vote for a debate—and somehow approve it within three days.

Turkey coordinates military strategy with Russia. As a five-day ceasefire between Turkish and Kurdish troops expires today, Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will meet with Vladimir Putin in Sochi. Erdoğan says he would then “take the necessary steps” in Syria.

Earnings season heats up. Investors hope McDonald’s can repeat last quarter’s magic and return to all-time highs. Procter & Gamble tries to maintain the momentum that’s sent its stock up more than 50% this year. Plus, Snap kicks off a slew of tech updates this week.

While you were sleeping

Justin Trudeau squeaked ahead. After a hard-fought race, the Liberal party gained enough seats to form a minority government, giving Trudeau a second term as prime minister. He could turn to the more left-leaning New Democratic Party for the support he’ll need.

Japan’s new emperor took his throne. Naruhito succeeded his father, Akihito, in May, but today’s centuries-old ceremony officially marked the change in status. Royals and leaders from more than 180 countries attended.

Riots broke out in Bolivia. Demonstrators set fire to electoral body offices in the south of the country, after president Evo Morales appeared set to secure a fourth term. His main opponent rejected the results, as monitors voiced “deep concern” over the vote.

Northern Ireland chose equal rights. Lawmakers overwhelmingly voted in favor of liberalizing abortion rights, and legalizing same-sex marriage, bringing the nation almost up to speed with the rest of the UK.

UBS hit headwinds. The Swiss banking giant posted earnings below last year’s, but still beat expectations. Though its investment banking lines took a hit, rich clients in Asia helped lift its wealth management business.


Our new field guide this week, exclusively for Quartz members, examines how India came to depend on coal for 55% of its energy. And why the country’s recent push to renewables is more about energy security than staving off its own climate crisis, at least for now.

Quartz Obsession

Black holes may be the greatest enigma in the known universe. They are not directly observable—light can’t escape their gravitational pull—so we can’t actually see them. And while we’re as sure as we can be that they actually exist, black holes are still full of secrets. Take a journey through time and space with the Quartz Obsession.

Matters of debate

Join the conversation on the Quartz app!

The gaming industry shouldn’t get greedy. Advances in AI make it too easy to extract maximum cash from players.

Don’t “live like a local.” Giving up this fiction is a more honest way to be a tourist.

You should tell your house guests who’s listening. Google’s head of hardware says he discloses his use of smart speakers to visitors.

Surprising discoveries

An Amazonian bird sings louder than a rock concert. The white bellbird belts out its mating call at 113 decibels.

A Bangladeshi MP hired eight lookalikes to take her college exams. Tamanna Nusrat was expelled after she was exposed in a viral video.

Rat-eating monkeys are an effective pesticide. Malaysian pig-tailed macaques reduce the rat population on palm oil plantations by more than 75%.

Tiny worlds are right in front of us. The winning shots from the Small World microphotography competition reveal the intricacies of alligator embryos and housefly eyes.

A cutting-edge telescope is made of hardware-store parts. HERA might not look hi-tech, but it could provide the first glimpses of the “cosmic dark ages”.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, disclosures, and hungry monkeys to Join the next chapter of Quartz by downloading our app and becoming a member. Today’s Daily Brief was brought to you by Adam Rasmi and Hasit Shah.