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It was a tough day in pre-Brexit Britain. European Union leaders agreed to toughen their negotiating position for Brexit talks, specifically including language on any future transitional agreement, according to the latest draft directives obtained by Bloomberg News. Elsewhere, JPMorgan agreed to pay €125 million for office space in Dublin to accommodate 1,000 staff. That’s again raised the prospect that Brexit could trigger an exodus of banks from London. — Siraj Datoo
Inching towards an agreement. Saudi Arabia and Russia both said they favor prolonging oil-output cuts through March 2018. Energy ministers from both nations said the move is needed to reach a goal of reducing global inventories to a five-year average. Crude futures jumped after the announcement. Oil-producing nations will meet in Vienna later this month to discuss a final agreement.
World, meet Edouard Philippe. In Emmanuel Macron’s first major announcement as French president, he named relatively unknown 46-year-old Edouard Philippe as his new premier. Philippe is the center-right mayor of Le Havre and is a member of the Republicans party. Macron is meeting Angela Merkel, and the German chancellor has given a hint of what to expect.
“It’s still a live threat and we’re still in disaster recovery mode.” A Europol spokesman said the number of computers infected by an unprecedented cyberattack does not seem to be growing, as governments and companies have begun fighting back. Over the weekend hackers used malware to infect more than 200,000 computers in at least 150 countries, and demanded ransom. Among those affected were the U.K.’s National Health Service, Russia’s Ministry of Interior, and carmakers Nissan and Renault.
Airlines are bracing for chaos. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security said last week it might expand to Europe the ban on laptops and other large electronics imposed on U.S.-bound flights from 10 Middle Eastern airports. The new security protocol could mean longer security lines, heightened delays, boarding gate confusion, and yet more hassles for fliers. Some are warning that going “overboard” with safety measures could lead to an uproar from business fliers.
Getting out of autopilot. Tesla shares fell after the the carmakers lost a buy rating from one of its longtime bulls. Adam Jonas, Morgan Stanley’s top auto analyst, thinks operating losses will continue through next year and estimates that Tesla will eat through $3.1 billion of cash this year.
The right man for the job. As investors head for the door, embattled commodities house Noble Group is turning to Paul Brough, the man who liquidated Lehman Brothers assets in Asia and oversaw restructuring in some of the region’s most high-profile collapses. Reviving Noble Group won’t be easy after two turbulent years marked by falling commodities prices, losses, mounting debt and accusations of improper accounting. Its stock market value has shrunk to less than $600 million from more than $10 billion in 2010.
Compiled by Leila Taha and Siraj Datoo