🌏 SVB’s global fallout

Plus: A never-ending wave of microplastics
🌏 SVB’s global fallout

Good morning, Quartz readers!

Here’s what you need to know

Silicon Valley Bank’s collapse hit global financial hubs. China, India, and the UK are among the countries racing to shield their economies from the failure of the 16th largest bank in the US.

Pfizer made one of the biggest pharma deals in history. The US drugmaker agreed to pay $43 billion in cash for cancer biotech firm Seagen.

Russia signaled support for a grain deal extension—but only for 60 more days. The UN-brokered deal, made last July between Russia and Ukraine, has helped lower global food prices.

India’s retail inflation eased in February. Prices are still higher than the country’s central bank wants, meaning rate hikes are likely on the way next month.

What to watch for

Japanese workers are awaiting the outcome of the annual “shunto” wage negotiations between the government, top businesses, and union leaders on Wednesday (March 15), with economists predicting one of the most significant wage hikes in decades. But will the average pay increase be enough to meet the central bank’s goals of a wage growth that matches inflation?

Diego Lasarte looks at the negotiations’ stakes, as well as how shunto, loosely translated as “spring offensive,” came to be.

The oceans’ plastic problem isn’t even close to cresting

The oceans are teeming with plastic—upwards of 170 trillion particles of it—and that figure is exponentially growing.

A line chart showing the average number of plastic particles in the world's oceans. The number of particles has been growing exponentially since around 2005.
Graphic: Clarisa Diaz

By 2040, the rate of plastic entering the world’s waters is expected to increase to approximately 2.6 times what it was in 2016. As Clarisa Diaz reports for Quartz, drastic policy changes are needed to shift the responsibility from consumers to producers.

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Surprising discoveries

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Our best wishes for a productive day. Send any news, comments, Canadian meanness, and Neve Campbell posters to hi@qz.com. Reader support makes Quartz available to all—become a member. Today’s Daily Brief was brought to you by Clarisa Diaz, Sofia Lotto Persio, and Morgan Haefner.