🌎 VinFast's victory lap

Plus: Hopping from one dirty job to the next

The VinFast VF 9 is seen on display at the New York International Auto Show at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center on April 15, 2022 in New York City.
Photo: Michael M. Santiago (Getty Images)

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Here’s what you need to know

A Vietnamese electric vehicle maker is now worth more than GM and Ford. VinFast’s valuation soared to $85 billion after it went public on the Nasdaq stock exchange.

Sam Bankman-Fried allegedly used customer deposits to play both sides of the US midterm elections. The founder of fallen crypto exchange FTX was accused of funneling $100 million into political donations in 2022.


Shoppers pulled back at Home Depot. Declining sales at the world’s largest home improvement retailer is a sign of a sluggish housing market, but Warren Buffett is feeling bullish about its future.

One of the world’s largest beef producers has frozen exports for the rest of August. Argentinian beef is chilling at home, while the government negotiates pricing levels with the meat industry.


Pop quiz: Which Japanese industry in China is doing just fine on a weak yen?

Here are three Japanese manufacturers doing business in China, all of whom have converted a weak home currency into strong profits. That’s one of the positive effects of a declining currency after all: boosting price competitiveness of exporters.

Image for article titled 🌎 VinFast's victory lap
Graphic: Mary Hui

Name these three companies. Too difficult? Name the industry. Still too difficult? Find out the answer, and more, courtesy of Mary Hui.


From one dirty job to another

Sure, the number of Americans leaving dirty jobs for green ones is rising rapidly (increasing tenfold between 2005 and 2021). And sure, electric vehicles are driving that transition. But the number is still alarmingly small.


Fewer than 1% of all workers who leave a job in a carbon-intensive industry—think coal, mining, oil, and natural gas—appear to transition to a low-carbon industry job—solar, wind, or EV production. Meanwhile, the climate continues, rapidly, to warm.

A couple of factors, including the Inflation Reduction Act and its new clean energy products, will make these numbers change in the future, though, Michelle Cheng reports.


And now, to get those workers to take some time off…

Nearly half of US workers who receive paid time off—that includes vacation time, but also time off for appointments, sick days, or even mental health breaks—don’t use it all. And the more money they earn, the more of that PTO they’re likely to leave on the table.

Image for article titled 🌎 VinFast's victory lap
Graphic: Gabriela Riccardi

That’s not the only thing affecting all that lovely time off going to waste. Managers, college graduates, and salaried employees tend to be most likely to not use it all. It’s a uniquely American situation, too, and simply granting “unlimited” PTO doesn’t always do the trick. Gabriela Riccardi explains why.


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Surprising discoveries

Holiday decor is here. Inflation and excessive heat are among the reasons for the wildly unseasonable Christmas creep on store shelves.


Paris booksellers are unimpressed by the upcoming Olympics. Preparation plans range from “scornfully stowing a couple sport-themed books in a corner” to “completely disinterested non-action.”

Everybody wants pink pineapples. Del Monte can’t produce its premium extra-sweet Pinkglow fruits fast enough.


Hollywood’s ninth largest distributor is a bit of an oddball. When you’re the only one bringing live opera, theater, faith-based originals, and anime to movie theaters, being niche really pays.

A new book describes precisely what it’s like to work the info desk at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It was best written in verse.


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