Q-MHI Daily Brief ;

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Good morning, Q-MHI readers!

WHAT TO WATCH FOR TODAY

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The EU’s jobless rate in February. Economists expect a slight decline in unemployment from 9.6% to 9.5% amid the euro zone’s modest recovery. That would be welcome news, but the bloc’s high unemployment rate—roughly double the US equivalent—remains one of its key worries (paywall).

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America’s H-1B visa applications open. A popular visa for foreign tech workers, the permit for skilled US jobs hit its 85,000 cap in less than a week last year after the application process began. This year, amid immigration tensions, the option to expedite the application for a $1,225 fee has been frozen.

A sign adorns the building where mining company Rio Tinto has their office in Perth, Western Australia

The global copper industry meets in Chile. The annual Cesco conference will focus on why global copper prices haven’t rebounded this year. Workers at Chile’s Escondida copper mine (the world’s largest) just ended a 43-day strike this year.

WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING

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Donald Trump said the US would “solve” North Korea alone. The US president told the Financial Times that he was willing to take unilateral action (paywall) to eliminate the North Korean nuclear threat if China refuses to put pressure on Pyongyang. The issue will be high on the agenda when Trump hosts Xi Jinping in Florida later this week. Trump told the FT that trade would be China’s incentive to help with North Korea.

Reckitt Benckiser wants to cut the mustard. The British consumer goods company is considering the sale of its food arm, which includes French’s mustard and Frank’s Red Hot sauces. Selling the subsidiary, which is worth about $3 billion, would help Reckitt pay down some of its debt. It’s also in the process of buying baby-formula maker Mead Johnson.

Apple ditched its UK-based chip designer. Shares in Imagination Technologies plunged 70% on Monday morning in London, after Apple announced it would no longer use its graphics-processing tech in the iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch in two year’s time. Apple is Imagination’s biggest customer by far, accounting for half of its revenues.

Tesla delivered a record number of vehicles in the first quarter. Production hit the 25,000 mark, a 69% increase over a year ago. That was a relief for the electric car maker, as technical problems and delays led to a 9% production decrease in the final quarter of last year.

Ecuador went to the polls. Leftist candidate Lenin Moreno appears to have narrowly beaten conservative rival Guillermo Lasso, who immediately demanded a recount and urged his supporters to protest. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is probably breathing easier, as Lasso had promised to boot him from Ecuador’s embassy in London should he win.

A massive landslide in Colombia killed more than 250 people. The disaster, in the southwestern city of Mocoa, was triggered by torrential rains which caused a devastating wave of mud and rocks. Rescuers and families are still searching for hundreds of missing people.

Q-MHI OBSESSION INTERLUDE

Oliver Staley on the coach who turned tiny Gonzaga into a US college basketball giant: “[Mark] Few is justifiably celebrated as one of the game’s great coaches for taking a small and obscure Catholic college from sleepy Spokane, Washington (population: 211,000) and turning it into a college basketball powerhouse… Less well known is that it was Few’s predecessor, Dan Monson, that started Gonzaga’s run of greatness.” 

MATTERS OF DEBATE

Democrats can work with Donald Trump. They share economic populist values that would help (paywall) the US economy and the Democratic party.

Baseball isn’t boring. As the slowest of American sports, its highs and lows can be as satisfying (paywall) as a great novel.

Silicon Valley is addicted to “bro CEOs.” We’re giving young jerks (paywall) limitless money and power to create doomed corporate frat houses.

SURPRISING DISCOVERIES

Snapchat is turning into a search engine. The fleeting-photo-sharing service launched a search function for its stories, paving the way for more ads.

The extinct Tasmanian tiger was spotted in Australia. Scientists plan to erect 50 camera traps in Queensland to get a glimpse of the mysterious creature.

The live shareholder meeting is dead. More US companies are opting for (paywall) online annual shareholders’ meetings, to the chagrin of traditionalists.

A badger was caught on video burying a dead cow to eat later. The impressive act shed light on the habits of the small, nocturnal animal.

Britain is self-conscious about its passport color. It may return to navy blue, which MP Andrew Rosindell said would end “the humiliation of having a pink European Union passport.”

Q-MHI 

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