7.11.2024

 

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Good morning. It's Thursday, July 11, and we're covering CNN's new strategy, a breakthrough on bone density, and much more. First time reading? Join over 3.5 million intellectually curious readers. Sign up here.

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Need To Know
 

CNN's Strategic Pivot

CNN is cutting about 100 jobs, nearly 3% of its workforce, as CEO Mark Thompson yesterday unveiled a new digital strategy for the company amid declining TV viewership and revenue.

 

In a memo to staff, Thompson outlined his plan to release a video-heavy subscription product this year through CNN.com as well as paywalled lifestyle content. The announcement comes two years after the abrupt launch—and shuttering—of CNN+, its subscription streaming service. Last year, the company released CNN Max, a live news streaming platform available through parent company Warner Bros.' Max.

 

For years, CNN's prime-time viewership ratings have declined, trailing Fox News and MSNBC. Profit last year fell below $1B for the first time in years as advertising revenue in early 2023 dropped almost 40% from the year before. CNN's struggles come amid a broader trend in news consumption habits; today, a majority of Americans get at least some of their news through digital products.

 

Brittle Bone Breakthrough

Scientists have solved a long-standing mystery about how new mothers retain bone strength during breastfeeding, according to a new study. The results may lead to treatments to help injuries heal more quickly and prevent bone diseases in the general population.

 

The high nutritional demands of milk can deplete bones of essential calcium-based minerals during lactation. Because estrogen, which typically helps promote healthy bones (see overview), drops in the postpartum period, it was unclear how new mothers maintain near-healthy bone density. The study found that a hormone produced exclusively during breastfeeding—known as CCN3—jumps in to take the place of estrogen, triggering bone formation throughout the body.

 

Although CCN3 is only produced by new mothers, introducing it to any mouse—young or old, male or female—strengthened and promoted bone growth. Researchers hope the findings may one day help treat osteoporosis, which affects more than 200 million people globally. 

 

Tariffs, Tightened

The White House yesterday released new rules strengthening tariffs on metals routed through Mexico. The rules build upon former President Donald Trump’s 2018 tariffs, which set a 25% tax on steel imports and a 10% tax on aluminum imports.

 

Mexico won an exemption to the tariffs in 2019; under the new rules, however, companies shipping steel and aluminum from Mexico will have to prove their origin. Officials say 13% of steel and 6% of aluminum imported from Mexico originate from outside of North America, including from China, which produces half of the world’s steel. The announcement comes after the Biden administration raised tariffs on $18B of Chinese imports earlier this year. Goods targeted included electric vehicles, solar panels, semiconductors, syringes, and medical gloves.

 

The announcement comes as the value of US-China trade has soared in recent decades, with imports surpassing $420B last year, up more than 300% from the turn of the century. Last year's imports nonetheless represented a 20% drop from 2022, as tariffs narrowed the trade deficit with China.

In partnership with SmartAsset

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In The Know
 

Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

> NBA finalizes 11-year, $76B TV and media rights deal with ABC/ESPN, NBC, and Amazon (More) | Former NBA player Jontay Porter pleads guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud; Porter was banned for life from the NBA for gambling (More)

> "Inside Out 2" becomes Pixar's highest-grossing film ever, hauling in $1.25B at global box office less than one month after its release (More

> England tops the Netherlands 2-1 to advance to 2024 European Championship; they face off against Spain for the title Sunday (More

 

Science & Technology

> Scientists edit genes of gut microbiome bacteria in a living mouse in world first; approach could provide new treatments for gut-related diseases and conditions in humans (More

> Link uncovered between anti-obesity drugs and severe nausea experienced by some users; study reveals separate brain circuits for feeling sick and feeling full (More

> Astronomers discover the most direct evidence to date for an intermediate black hole; at 100 to 10,000 times the mass of the sun, such objects have been difficult to detect (More) | What are black holes? (More, w/video)

In partnership with EnergyX

Meeting the World’s Projected 20X Lithium Demand

Each EV battery needs ~70 kg of lithium—10,000X the amount of an iPhone. With >1 billion EVs needed on roads by 2050, current lithium production can’t meet soaring demand.

 

Enter EnergyX. Their tech can extract up to 300% more lithium than traditional methods, earning them $100M+ of investments from GM and others. They also just announced Project Lonestar, a US lithium plant supported by a $5M DOE grant.

 

For a limited time, EnergyX invites you to join them as a shareholder.**

 
 

Business & Markets

> US stock markets close higher (S&P 500 +1.0%, Dow +1.1%, Nasdaq +1.2%); S&P 500 notches 37th record close for the year, Nasdaq notches 27th (More) | HubSpot shares drop 12% on reports Alphabet is no longer buying the marketing software platform (More)

> Federal Trade Commission reportedly poised to sue three largest pharmacy benefit managers linked to UnitedHealth, Cigna Group, and CVS Health over tactics for negotiating drug prices (More) | See previous write-up (More

> Archegos Capital founder Bill Hwang convicted of fraud, market manipulation tied to firm's 2021 collapse (More) | Microsoft ends nonvoting observer role on OpenAI's board amid partnership scrutiny from US and European antitrust regulators (More

 

Politics & World Affairs

> Israeli military orders Gaza City residents to evacuate south as Israeli airstrikes kill 50 people and wound over 200 more across Gaza, per Hamas-run Health Ministry (More) | Cease-fire talks continue in Qatar (More)

> Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D, NY-14) introduces articles of impeachment against Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, criticizing their refusal to recuse themselves from cases in which they allegedly had personal or financial interests (More) | The history of justices and impeachment (More)

> Democratic calls continue for President Joe Biden to drop out of presidential race as top fundraiser George Clooney joins calls and House Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi appears to sidestep question on Biden support (More) | House Oversight Committee subpoenas three White House aides over Biden's mental fitness (More

 

In-Depth

> Haunting the Human Genome Project

Undark | Ashley Smart. When scientists undertook the Human Genome Project, they took blood samples from 20 people, promising anonymity and diversified samples. Ultimately, more than 70% of the project's DNA came from a single volunteer, who was likely never informed about his outsized role. (Read)

 

>The Health Crisis of a Texas Bitcoin Town

Time | Andrew R. Chow. A range of health problems—including migraines, vertigo, and nausea—has stalked residents of Granbury, Texas. Could noise pollution from Bitcoin mining be responsible? (Read)

In partnership with SmartAsset

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Etcetera
 

Musket balls traced to “The Shot Heard Round the World.”

 

Collaboration brings 28-year-old Simpsons joke to life.

 

The best (and worst) US cities for new college grads.

 

What your grocery list says about you

 

The nanny who revolutionized 20th-century street photography.

 

What tree rings can teach us about avalanches.

 

Ranking Europe's most beautiful vineyards.

 

How to spot the Milky Way this summer without a telescope.

 

Clickbait: German yacht turns trash into treasure.

 

Historybook: President John Quincy Adams born (1767); Vice President Aaron Burr mortally wounds Alexander Hamilton in duel (1804); "To Kill a Mockingbird" is published (1960); Iconic actor Laurence Olivier dies (1989); Former first lady Lady Bird Johnson dies (2007).

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