Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg
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In the 14 months since the Brexit referendum, “Leavers” have been pointing out that the sky didn’t fall on the British economy. Now things seem to be changing. The FTSE 100 is the worst-performing major index in Europe this year. U.K. companies are feeling less confident about hiring or investing. The pound is at a two-month low. And a new report from brokerage UBS warns that the U.K. economy may be even weaker than it looks. Meanwhile, the 19-nation euro area is clocking its best growth in years. — Andy Reinhardt
Climbdown. Prime Minister Theresa May’s government says it will accept a “close cooperative relationship” with the European Court of Justice. The change in policy, laid out in the government’s latest Brexit position paper, is a concession aimed at accelerating Brexit talks. In her pre-election rhetoric, the prime minister had promised to end the court’s jurisdiction over Britain.
Searching for a leader. Israel’s Teva Pharmaceutical is the world’s biggest manufacturer of generic drugs. Yet it has been unable to find the right CEO since the retirement of Eli Hurvitz in 2002. The company has cycled through four chief executives and lots of failed strategies. Its shares have lost nearly three-quarters of their value, and now it’s planning layoffs and asset sales. If Teva is forced to look outside Israel for a CEO or even put itself up for sale, it would be a blow to Hurvitz’s patriotic vision of a purely Israeli company.
Preaching to the converted. Chancellor Angela Merkel is crisscrossing Germany in the last weeks of election season, but she’s playing it safe, barely stepping outside areas where her Christian Democratic-led bloc won in the polls four years ago. Only three of 50 scheduled stops are in districts where Merkel’s bloc didn’t lead last time. Her challenger, Social Democrat leader Martin Schulz, has a different strategy: He’s concentrating on Germany’s biggest cities.
Macron looks east. French President Emmanuel Macron kicks off an EU diplomatic blitz on Wednesday with visits to Austria, Romania, and Bulgaria. As he copes with a drop in popularity at home, Macron aims to chalk up some victories on issues like security, defense, and rules for foreign workers. But he’ll need to succeed domestically with labor reform to shore up his credibility on the European stage—and with protests planned already, it’s not clear he can pull it off.
Buying and selling. London home prices will probably stall for years, according to a Bloomberg News survey of economists. Brexit and a shaky economy, plus tax changes for landlords, mean the market will likely remain subdued until there’s clarity on the U.K.’s divorce from the European Union. Asking prices rose 1.4 percent in August from a year ago, a huge drop from the bubbly 20-percent year-over-year growth logged in August 2014.
High-stakes battle. Among vintage collectors, certain timepieces are known as holy grails. They’re the ones that inspire bidding frenzies and, subsequently, bragging rights. Among the most coveted is the Daytona Rolex, a limited run of sports watches produced from 1966 until the mid-1970s and made famous by actor and philanthropist Paul Newman. His own Daytona Rolex will go on auction Oct. 26 in New York—and it could fetch as much as $10 million. For a watch.
Compiled by Andy Reinhardt and Leila Taha