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Here’s what you need to know
OPEC+ stayed the course on oil production cuts. October’s decision was confirmed at a meeting on Dec. 4, ahead of the implementation of a $60 price cap on Russian-origin crude oil negotiated by the EU, the G7, and Australia.
US authorities said a “targeted attack” brought down power stations in North Carolina. Thousands of homes and businesses in Moore County have been without power since the evening of Dec. 3.
Delta Airlines reached a tentative deal on a new contract for pilots. The agreement must be approved by union leadership before a members’ vote, and would provide pilots with at least 30% in pay hikes over four years.
US covid hospitalizations are at a three-month high. The post-Thanksgiving uptick compounds a rise in other seasonal diseases, creating challenges for hospitals nationwide.
Starlink’s constellation is about to triple in size. Elon Musk’s SpaceX got approval from US regulators to add 7,500 satellites to its fleet.
Iran’s attorney general said the country disbanded its so-called morality police. The move aims to quell months of protests sparked by the death of a woman arrested by the vice squad over her head covering.
What to watch for
On Dec. 6, US president Joe Biden will visit an Arizona factory being built by TSMC, the world’s largest semiconductor manufacturer. The Taiwanese chipmaker’s decision to open shop in the US is a big win for Biden, who’s been seeking to ramp up domestic production of semiconductor chips, a key tech component, amid a global shortage.
Until last year, the US produced only 12% of the world’s chips. This year, Biden earmarked $52.7 billion for semiconductor manufacturing and research, the bulk of which—$39 billion—has gone into incentives for domestic manufacturing. The legislation also grants a 25% investment tax credit for capital expenses and equipment.
TSMC, a 35-year-old powerhouse, stands to benefit, especially as it seeks to insulate its business from increasingly turbulent relations with China. Aside from the new $12 billion factory in Arizona, TSMC is building a plant in Japan, which has also created a fund to boost chip manufacturing.
Oh, how the IPOs have fallen
Amid soaring inflation, interest rate hikes, and economic uncertainty, initial public offerings (IPOs) on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) took a plunge in 2022, falling a whopping 93% from last year.
Analysts aren’t confident that IPOs will make a recovery in 2023, especially as fears of a recession persist, and special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs), a popular vehicle for going public in 2021, are expected to decline further amid increasing regulatory scrutiny. Here’s a look at how far IPOs have dropped off from last year:
1,033: The record-breaking number of IPOs in the US in 2021
173: Number of IPOs in the US by Nov. 15 this year
59%: Share of 2021 US IPOs that were SPACs—publicly traded companies created for the purpose of acquiring or merging with an existing firm
88.6%: Year-on-year decline in SPAC merger transactions in the first nine months of 2022
What’s stopping Africa from solving its food security crisis?
At the Africa Financial Industry Summit in Lome, Togo, last week, it became apparent that investors’ appetite for financing African agricultural projects is not a problem. The challenge is finding an African country whose supply chains, policies, and regulations attract investment.
Right now, agricultural enterprises in sub-Saharan Africa face a $74.5 billion funding gap. One big problem is counterfeit agricultural products, which affects seeds, fertilizer, and pesticides, resulting in lower investor confidence.
✦ The latest edition of the Quartz Africa Brief looked at the path forward to solve Africa’s food security crisis. Never miss a beat from the continent by signing up for the free weekly email. And while you’re at it, grab a Quartz membership—we’ve got a 50% off deal for you.
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Our best wishes for a productive day. Send any news, comments, space trophies, and camel posters to email@example.com. Reader support makes Quartz available to all—become a member. Today’s Daily Brief was brought to you by Ananya Bhattacharya, Sofia Lotto Persio, Julia Malleck, and Morgan Haefner.