Good morning! Here’s what you need to know.
1) Jobs Day. The BLS will release nonfarm payrolls for August at 8:30 a.m. Consensus is for an increase of 230,000, up from the 209,000 in July. The consensus is for the unemployment rate to decrease to 6.1% in August from 6.2%. “Trends in labour market variables over the past month have shown little change, leading us to look for another month of solid job growth,” Barclays says. “However, after a three-month bump in the pace of payroll growth, coinciding with the rebound in activity in Q2, we look for payroll growth to settle into a more consistent run rate in the second half of the year.” Barclays also sees average hourly earnings climbing 0.2% and the workweek to remain unchanged at 34.5 hours.
2) Tesla In Nevada: Billions And Billions. The numbers announced Thursday afternoon at a joint conference between Tesla and Nevada political leaders announcing the site of Tesla’s battery production Gigafactory were staggering. First, Tesla is getting $US1.25 billion in incentives over 20 years: no sales tax for 20 years, no property tax and payroll tax for 10 years, and tax credits tied to job creation and development, The New York Times’ Matt Wald says. The firm will also enjoy discount electricity rates for eight years and make millions of dollars in road improvements around the factory site, he writes. But Gov. Brian Sandoval says the total economic impact over the next 20 years will be $US100 billion. The factory will cost $US5 billion to build and employ up to 6,500 people.
3) Apple Beefing Up Security. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal’s Daisuke Wakabayashi, CEO Tim Cook said his company would start alerting users on their phones and by email when it appears someone may be trying to illicitly change their iCloud password, restore their data to a new device, or log in for the first time. He also explained how celebrities’ accounts were compromised: “Hackers correctly answered security questions to obtain their passwords, or … they were victimized by a phishing scam to obtain user IDs and passwords. He said none of the Apple IDs and passwords leaked from the company’s servers.”
4) Huawei Gets Jump On iPhone 6. The Chinese electronics maker has released a sapphire glass display phone ahead of Apple’s iPhone 6, which is also expected to include the technology. The material is more costly but more durable. Huawei’s phone also has a fingerprint sensor, which was first seen on Apple’s iPhone 5S. “Huawei, which began as a telecom equipment company in 1987, has rapidly transformed itself in recent years into the world’s No. 3 smartphone maker behind Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. and Apple,” Reuters says.
5) Draghi’s Goldilocks Problem. On Wednesday, ECB Chief Mario Draghi announced the bank would begin buying privately owned securities and lowering interest rates to ease monetary conditions in the eurozone. But there was some dissension among ECB members on the decision, and some analysts say Draghi may have overly compromised on a policy that may now be too “just right” and not hot enough to address the serious challenges the region’s economy faces. “
[As] far as I can see, the SME ABS programme is either going to be too small to make much difference, or is likely to encounter serious problems with loan quality at some point, putting the ECB’s balance sheet at risk,” financial writer Frances Coppola says.
6) U.S. Inequality Has Worsened. The Federal Reserve says gains in income and wealth shares during the recovery have been largely concentrated among America’s top few income percentiles — a return to an underlying trend temporarily slowed by the recession. “Between 2010 and 2013, mean (overall average) family income rose 4% in real terms, but median income fell 5%, consistent with increasing income concentration during this period,” they write. “Some of the 2010 to 2013 growth differential reflected a return to trend, after the cyclical narrowing of the income distribution between 2007 and 2010, when large decreases in top incomes associated with the recent financial crisis reduced mean family income more than median family income. Families at the bottom of the income distribution saw continued substantial declines in average real incomes between 2010 and 2013, continuing the trend observed between the 2007 and 2010 surveys.”
7) Why BP Shares Tanked. Yesterday the London-based oil giant was found grossly negligent in the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Gulf of Mexico disaster, which killed 11 people, injured 16, and forced BP into a $US13 billion settlement with claims victims. Despite BP having already taken a $US43 billion charge to cover all legal expenses, shares fell nearly 6% on the ruling. The FT’s Ed Crooks and Guy Chazan explain why: “For some BP shareholders, Judge Barbier’s ruling was dismaying. ‘The market had been pretty sanguine that BP would not be found grossly negligent,” said Will Riley, co-manager of the Guinness Global Energy Fund. ‘We weren’t expecting this.’ Charles Whall, co-portfolio manager for Global Energy Fund at Investec Asset Management, said investors had ‘taken some encouragement’ from Halliburton’s $1.1bn settlement with the Department of Justice this week. ‘Most people will be caught off-guard by this,’ he said. ‘They thought there’d be room for negotiation.'”
8) Starbucks Shrinking, Upscaling Stores. The Seattle beanroasters say they will open express editions of their outlets in New York City early next year. “The company said the New York store would be small and convenient, with a limited food and beverage menu,” Reuters says. “It will use digital payment and mobile ordering to speed up service. Starbucks declined to say how many express stores are planned.” Starbucks will also open 100 “Reserve Roastery and Tasting Room” shops for a more refined coffee drinking experience. “Starbucks said it plans to open a ‘first of its kind’ 15,000-square-foot small-batch reserve roastery in the hipster Capitol Hill neighbourhood of its Seattle home market in December,” Reuters says. “The company will consolidate roasting of its reserve offerings, including Geisha and Jamaica Blue Mountain, in the facility, which will house a store, a tasting room and a cafe devoted to its reserve coffees.”
9) Markets. Stocks are down around the world. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was off 0.2%. London’s FTSE fell 0.66%. U.S. futures declined 0.3%.
10) While You Were Sleeping. The Seattle Seahawks routed the Green Bay Packers 36-16 in the opening game of the 2014 NFL season, while Roger Federer rallied from two sets down — saving two match points in the process — to beat Gael Monfils to advance to the semifinals of the U.S. Open.
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