🌎 Discontent brews at Starbucks

Plus: India has a hard time getting online
🌎 Discontent brews at Starbucks

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Here’s what you need to know

Starbucks’ union-busting tactics were condemned in and out of court. On the day a judge ruled the company violated labor laws, corporate employees also complained about management’s decisions.

Eli Lilly announced a series of price cuts for insulin and the copay. The company’s plan goes further than a recently announced White House initiative, but it cannot make up for the need to regulate insulin prices.

Tesla’s investor day fell short of expectations. The electric carmaker’s stock price tumbled after executives gave few details about new offerings, but confirmed plans for a new Mexico plant.

Global greenhouse gas emissions reached a new record in 2022. The International Energy Agency noted, though, that improvements in renewables and energy efficiency made the rise less stark than feared.

What to watch for

Costco is expected to report its weakest sales growth in three years today (Mar. 2). The US big-box store chain would be joining a growing list of retailers with lackluster sales, as customers remind merchants that everything’s really expensive right now and something has to give.

Costco’s membership growth, however, may be its saving grace. The company is expected to add another 480,000 paid subscribers to its 67 million households. Increasing membership fees could be a way to compensate for slower sales, and would probably spark less outrage than raising hot dog prices.

Chief financial officer Richard Galanti has said that an increase in the membership fee was “a question of when, not if,” but that the company is in no rush to do so, opting for a wait-and-see approach.

India leads the world in internet instability

It doesn’t seem to matter that internet access is a fundamental right in India. For the fifth year in a row, the country saw its access to the World Wide Web go dark more than any other in 2022, accounting for nearly half of the world’s total shutdowns.

Image for article titled 🌎 Discontent brews at Starbucks
Graphic: Mimansa Verma

For India, shutdowns have largely centered in regions of political instability and violence, like Jammu and Kashmir. But a sudden shift to war explains why one country that didn’t even make the list in 2021 is now coming in second.

Identifying global virus strains is getting much easier

On Feb. 23, avian flu—or H5N1—killed a young girl in Cambodia. The World Health Organization (WHO) described the viral outbreak as “worrying.”

When the global health community rushed to sequence the new strain, it did so in less than a day. There’s one big reason why.

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