7.14.2022

Rising Prices, Iberian Wildfires, and Astronomy's Next Era Everything you need to know for today in five minutes.

Good morning. It's Thursday, July 14, and we're covering another month of rising prices, a stifling heatwave in Europe, and much more. Have feedback? Let us know at [email protected].

NEED TO KNOW

 

Prices Rise Again

US inflation rose 9.1% year-over-year in June, up from the 40-year high of 8.6% in May and the largest 12-month increase since November 1981. Rising costs of shelter, gas, and food were among the primary contributors to the increase. Energy prices rose 7.5% in June, with gas prices up 11.2% from May. See the data release here.

 

The consumer price index is a proxy for inflation that tracks the price of a basket of goods and services. Higher inflation means consumers can buy fewer goods with each dollar they spend (see 101). The core consumer price index, which removes volatile food and energy prices, rose 5.9% year-over-year. Based on the data, analysts expect the Federal Reserve to continue with plans to raise interest rates by at least 75 basis points at an end-of-the-month meeting.

 

US stock markets closed lower (S&P 500 -0.5%, Dow -0.7%, Nasdaq -0.2%) on the news.

Iberian Wildfires

Thousands of firefighters continued to battle a string of wildfires across Portugal, Spain, and southern France yesterday. Across the three countries, at least 25,000 acres have been consumed, with more than 7,000 people forced to evacuate. 

 

The fires come as a heatwave has settled across the region for the second time in as many months. Triple-digit temperatures are expected across both Spain and Portugal today, with some areas passing 110 degrees Fahrenheit. In Italy, officials declared a state of emergency, while the conditions prompted France to ban fireworks during today's Bastille Day celebrations over a fear of sparking fires. High temperatures along the Iberian Peninsula are expected to last through the weekend.

 

Some forecasts have pegged the heatwave as one of Europe's most severe in more than two centuries. In 2003, a summerlong heatwave was linked to at least 30,000 deaths.  

Ukrainian Grain Exports

Ukraine, Russia, Turkey, and the United Nations have made progress over a proposal to restart Ukrainian exports of millions of tons of grain that have been stuck due to Russia’s invasion. Officials met yesterday in Istanbul in what was the first direct talks between Russia and Ukraine over a proposed sea corridor, as Russian warships have blocked grain deliveries from leaving through the Black Sea. 

 

The talks—led by the UN and Turkey—are aimed at boosting global food supplies and alleviating Ukraine's struggling farm sector. Ukraine is one of the world’s largest grain exporters, responsible for 8.5% of global supplies. About 22 million tons of grain are trapped in the country, while another harvest begins. 

 

An agreement is expected to be signed next week and is likely to include establishing a center in Turkey to coordinate the safety of shipment routes.

 

See updates on the war here

In partnership with The Motley Fool

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Returns as of 7/11/22.

Past performance is not an indicator of future results. Not all Stock Advisor picks have performed as well.

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IN THE KNOW

 

Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

In partnership with Beam

> Golf's 150th British Open kicks off today from the Old Course in St. Andrews, Scotland (More) | Read more about the world's oldest golf course (More)

 

> Washington Commanders owner Dan Snyder won't testify under subpoena as part of US congress investigation into Commanders' workplace culture (More)

 

> "Top Gun: Maverick" cruises past $600M at domestic box office, topping "Titanic" as Paramount's biggest North American earner (More) | Daniel Kaluuya won't reprise role in "Black Panther 2" (More)

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Science & Technology

 > New AI model more accurate, up to 1,000 times faster than existing software in identifying potentially useful molecules for new drug development (More)

 

> Tropical mountain glaciers have changed in sync with polar glaciers in response to changing climate conditions for at least 700,000 years, new research finds (More)

 

> Study reveals where memory fragments are stored in the brain; individual details are parsed and stored in the prefrontal cortex, which accesses the hippocampus for information on the overall memory (More)

Business & Markets

> Netflix shares up 1% after announcing partnership with Microsoft to roll out an ad-supported offering (More)

 

> Bill Gates pledges another $20B to the Gates Foundation; philanthropic giant now has $70B endowment (More)

 

> North Carolina, Washington, and Virginia top CNBC’s 2022 annual list of top US states for business (More)

Politics & World Affairs

> Rishi Sunak, the UK's former chief financial minister, leads the first round of voting to replace Boris Johnson as prime minister; six candidates advance to next round of voting (More)

 

> President Joe Biden arrives in Israel, begins his first trip to the Middle East since taking office; Biden advocates for renewed Iran nuclear deal amid Israeli criticism (More)

 

> US health regulators provide emergency use authorization for COVID-19 vaccine from Novavax; shot becomes the fourth available to protect against the disease in the US (More) | See current US COVID-19 stats (More)

IN-DEPTH

 

Astronomy's Next Era

CNET | Monisha Ravisetti. The new James Webb Space Telescope is producing never-before-seen images thanks to its Near Infrared Cam, a device used to decode invisible infrared light. (Read)

Poison Pill

Truly*Adventurous | Staff. Investigators reveal who they think was behind the 1982 Tylenol poisonings, which killed seven and set the nation on edge. (Read)

DATA DON’T LIE

 

In partnership with The Motley Fool

 

Every so often, The Motley Fool publishes a "Double Down" stock recommendation for picks they’re so confident about, they recommend twice. So far, past "Double Down" stocks have provided returns of 9,983% (Netflix), 1,201% (Amazon), and 2,647% (Apple).

 

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Returns as of 7/11/22

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ETCETERA

 

The best (and worst) US cities for renting

 

Airbus' Zephyr breaks its own record for longest uncrewed flight.

 

A pristine 200-year-old mine is uncovered in England.

 

Music from the '90s is more popular than any other decade right now.

 

An optical illusion that messes with your head. (via Twitter)

 

Turtles are boosting tropical cyclone predictions.

 

A pet cat on the run is finally caught.

 

When introverted dogs gather for a meetup

 

Clickbait: Albuquerque, New Mexico, is installing statues of "Breaking Bad" characters.

 

Historybook: Revolutionaries in France storm the Bastille (1789); Archaeologist and spy Gertrude Bell born (1868); President Gerald Ford born (1913); Howard Hughes' crew breaks record with 91-hour flight around the world (1938); NASA's New Horizon probe completes flyby of Pluto (2015).

 

"There is nothing more difficult to measure than the value of visible emotion."

- Gertrude Bell

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