Deputy email editor
Good morning, Quartz readers!
Here’s what you need to know
Elon Musk stayed tethered to his “Twitter sitter.” A judge refused to end the 2018 Securities and Exchange Commission settlement that requires a Tesla lawyer to approve his tweets about the company. Meanwhile, Tesla shares slid further.
The number of Facebook users rose after its first-ever dip. Daily users grew to 1.96 billion in the first quarter of 2022, and despite the slowest revenue growth in more than a decade, parent company’s Meta’s stock jumped 19% in after-hours trading.
Unilever will continue to increase prices for its products. The consumer goods giant beat sales forecasts in the first quarter of 2022, but warned it’ll have to go further than the 8% price rises it’s already implemented to offset higher costs.
Boeing had a weak first quarter. The airplane manufacturer posted a $1.5 billion loss as it struggled against higher costs and production delays.
What to watch for
Today, Apple, Amazon, and Twitter report earnings, marking the grand finale of a week-long extravaganza of big tech financial disclosures. So far, the mood on the calls with investors has not been celebratory. Last week, Netflix watched its stock drop 35% after announcing it lost subscribers in the first quarter. In fact, dropping tech stocks are responsible for about half of the S&P 500’s decline in 2022.
But today’s tech earnings could give investors something to cheer about. Apple is expected to report strong iPhone sales, despite supply chain challenges. Although Amazon’s e-commerce sales may be growing more slowly than in years past, Amazon Web Services should continue to shine. And even though Twitter is expected to post lackluster numbers in what could be its last earnings report as a publicly traded company, investors won’t be too concerned now that Elon Musk has finalized a deal to buy out their shares.
The (full-blown) pandemic is over in the US
The US may still be logging around 47,000 covid-19 cases each day, but White House chief medical adviser Anthony Fauci suggested the country is turning a corner on the pandemic. In an interview with the Washington Post, Fauci said the US is “out of the full-blown explosive pandemic phase,” and seems to be moving to a point where cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are much lower, and controllable.
Meanwhile, US president Joe Biden is still pushing Congress for more covid-19 funding after a bipartisan deal stalled on Capitol Hill. A recent Senate package dropped nearly all funding intended to stop the coronavirus from spreading overseas, however, and vaccination rates in the poorest parts of the world remain much lower than in wealthy nations, including the US.
Most people in the US have been infected with covid-19, and nearly 1 million Americans have died after testing positive for the virus.
What does anything even mean anymore?
Unless you’re Elon Musk—or heck, maybe especially if you’re Elon Musk—maintaining momentum can be a struggle. Even mission-driven business professionals sometimes need help finding and preserving purpose in a profit-driven world, much less getting others in their organization aligned.
Register for free for How to find meaning at work, next up in our Quartz at Work (from anywhere) series. Join us Thursday, April 28, 2022 at 11am-12pm EDT (3-4pm GMT) and hear from our speakers:
Marty Rodgers, market unit lead, US South, Accenture (event sponsor)
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MIT engineers invented paper-thin loudspeakers. The film-like speakers are energy efficient and produce high-quality sound.
Plans for the world’s first floating city were unveiled at the UN. “Oceanix Busan” in South Korea will be a fully sustainable, floating community that can accommodate 12,000 people.
A 300-year-old Italian violin will soon be up for auction. This “da Vinci” of stringed instruments could sell for as much as $10.6 million.
A Singapore startup is turning tofu wastewater into soy wine. The drink, made by SinFooTech, is called “Sachi” and contains 5.8% alcohol.
The US could mint a trillion-dollar coin to wipe out its debt. But that’s not quite how national debt works. Learn why in the latest episode of the Quartz Obsession podcast.
Our best wishes for a productive day. Send any news, comments, the da Vinci of sandwiches, and tofu wine to firstname.lastname@example.org. Get the most out of Quartz by downloading our iOS app and becoming a member. Today’s Daily Brief was brought to you by Hasit Shah, Julia Malleck, Nicolás Rivero, Susan Howson, Courtney Vinopal, and Morgan Haefner.
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