What I am watching today = June 11, 2019
Curation and commentary from Marc A. Ross
Reporting from Alexandria, Virginia
Mexico, Wellness, Nixon, Federal Reserve, ExxonMobil, Justin Bieber, Le Mans 24-hour
✔️ Mexico’s foreign minister denies Trump’s claim of secret immigration deal
✔️ Selling Wellness, whether it works or not
✔️ Trump says he’s no Nixon because ‘He left. I don’t leave.’
✔️ ExxonMobil has been featured on Fortune 500 since the list's inception in 1955
✔️ Justin Bieber wants to fight Tom Cruise — and no one knows why
Self-promo alert: Bloomberg Radio
Last night, I joined Bloomberg Radio's Sound On program hosted by Bloomberg Chief Washington Correspondent Kevin Cirilli.
Overview and access to the episode below:
Guests include: Eli Yokley, Political reporter for Morning Consult, Marc Ross, founder of Caracal Global, Alex Wayne, Bloomberg News White House Team Leader.
Kevin also spoke to Kathy Kraninger, Director of the US Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) about the future of the CFPB and the agency’s stance on payday lending.
Trump Comments on Nixon
Mexico + Trump's use of tariffs
Impeachment and John Dean on Capitol Hill
Listen here: https://bloom.bg/2R09rQ0
Mexico agreed to revisit US demands for a radical overhaul of the immigration system if its proposed measures to curb migration don’t work, putting it under intense pressure to stem the tide of Central Americans arriving at the US border.
Mexico’s foreign minister denies Trump’s claim of secret immigration deal: NYT reports, the United States and Mexico will review immigration figures in 45 and 90 days, but Marcelo Ebrard directly contradicted the president’s claim of a signed deal.
Mexico talked Trump out of tariffs with extensive migrant crackdown: WP reports, Mexican negotiators agreed to an unprecedented immigration pact and preemptively accepted broader measures in Mexico if initial efforts don’t deliver quick results, according to officials and related documents.
"Americans dodged another tax increase. The US and Mexico have a deal to avoid trade taxes. The threat of hyperinflation in the price of avocados in the US has mercifully been lifted. Equities and the Mexican peso liked the news. There may be some lasting damage; the trade tax genie is out of the bottle." -- Paul Donovan
LAT: US and Mexican officials give different accounts of immigration deal that averted tariffs
US targets efforts by China and others to recruit scientists: WSJ reports, the Energy Department has banned its scientists from participating in talent-recruitment programs sponsored by China and other adversarial foreign governments after finding that its personnel have been recruited by foreign military-affiliated programs and lured with multimillion-dollar packages.
Trump says Mexico tariffs worked, emboldening trade fight with China: NYT reports, Trump backed off his tariff threat on Mexico last week and pivoted back to his clash with China, vowing to hit Beijing harder. His growing confidence that the levies have helped achieve his goals without harming the United States sets up an even more tumultuous period ahead.
FT: Trump says new China tariffs will kick in on Xi G20 no-show
US president threatens immediate imposition of trade levies on $300bn of additional imports.
Nikkei: Hong Kong's financial hub status rattled by extradition bill
US says measures risk jeopardizing territory's special status.
Hong Kong’s protesters plan parliament siege: The Times, protesters plan to lay siege to Hong Kong’s parliament tomorrow amid calls for a general strike as a proposed extradition law pushes the territory into its worst political crisis in years. About 30 civic groups, including religious and small business organizations, are aiming to escalate their opposition to the proposed law.
Nikkei: Trade war steers Chinese investment toward Southeast Asia
Spending in Vietnam swells sixfold as manufacturers seek non-tariffed bases.
James Stavridis: China and Russia want to control the ‘World Island’: Increasing military cooperation helps both sides now, but in the long run Beijing will rule.
Kim Jong Un's half-brother, killed in 2017, was CIA informant: Report.
Italy, short of euros, flirts with a different way to pay: WSJ reports, Italy’s populist leaders are discussing paying public-sector suppliers with IOUs instead of money, a step that Italian euroskeptics have proposed as the starting point for a new currency in case Italy has to leave Europe’s currency union.
FT: Ten Tory MPs join race to replace May in Downing St
Hunt’s slick campaign launch sees him gain momentum as a credible rival to Johnson.
Rivals denounce Johnson’s tax giveaway: The Times reports, Conservative leadership rivals attacked Boris Johnson yesterday for putting tax cuts for the rich at the center of his leadership bid. In the first proper skirmishes of the campaign, the former foreign secretary was accused of allowing the Tories to be portrayed as the “party of privilege” as he announced plans to raise the threshold for higher rate income tax.
Gove, Hunt and Raab attack boost for wealthiest.
Selling Wellness, whether it works or not: WSJ reports, developers command a premium for homes with amenities like infrared saunas and meditation rooms, though some scientists dispute their benefits.
Nearly 1 in 5 students in the US don't have access to computers at home.
Flying cars get a lift from Denso and Honeywell: Nikkei reports, Japanese automotive parts supplier Denso will join forces with Honeywell International to jointly develop electric and hybrid propulsion systems for flying passenger vehicles under plans announced Monday.
Justice Dept. agrees to turn over key Mueller evidence to House: NYT reports, the scope of the material was not immediately clear. But Democrats believe it could shed light on possible obstruction of justice by Trump. The deal, coming after tense negotiations, seemed to explain House Democrats’ choice to back away from threats to hold the attorney general in contempt.
John Dean cites parallels between Watergate and Mueller investigation: LAT reports, House Democrats ask the former White House counsel for President Nixon for historical context about presidential investigations.
Bloomberg: Trump says he’s no Nixon because ‘He left. I don’t leave.’
Trump, facing calls for impeachment from some Democrats, sought on Monday to draw a contrast between himself and former President Richard Nixon, who resigned in 1974 before lawmakers could remove him from office.
FT: Trump renews attack on Federal Reserve policy
US president calls rate policy ‘very, very disruptive’ and argues it helps China.
Timothy O'Brien: Donald Trump’s failures make him even more dangerous: If countries keep calling the president’s bluff, as Mexico has done, there’s a good chance he may start burning things down just to prove a point.
@ewong: Trump doesn’t make deals. He makes “deal theater.” What else did Americans expect from a reality-TV personality? The dilemma is whether to humor him on his faux foreign policy deals b/c it’s safer to let him think he has won
LAT: Dianne Feinstein calls for races at Santa Anita to be suspended immediately
Uber's European rival Bolt enters London market, again.
ExxonMobil has been featured on the Fortune 500 every single year since the list's inception in 1955.
Hudson's Bay, the owner of Saks Fifth Avenue and Lord & Taylor, receives offer to take the Canadian company private.
@charliebilello: Beyond Meat's market cap is now almost $4 billion higher than Macy's.
Beyond Meat: founded in 2009, has 383 employees and did $88 million in revenue last year.
Macy's: founded in 1858, has 130,000 employees and did $25 billion in revenue last year.
Shutterfly snapped up by a buyout firm for $1.74 billion.
Lumen = a dating app for singles over 50.
@web: There's nothing worse than a soulless brand that stands for nothing.
1/ the brand is run by committee
2/ chief architect isn't the demo
3/ they've set aside niche for volume
4/ discovery shifts from "inspiration and awareness" to "availability and convenience."
Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) brands have added $1.4 billion to the TV ad marketplace over the past year, according to research out of the Video Advertising Bureau.
In total, 125 DTC brands spent 60 percent more on TV commercials in 2018 than in the year prior, according to VAB.
Krispy Kreme announced Monday that it will open the "first-of-its-kind flagship" in Times Square in early 2020.
NBC Universal wants to tap into the sounds of brands to capture viewers’ attention leading into commercial breaks. The peacock is out in the upfront marketplace looking to sell its new “must hear TV” ad format, which of course plays off of NBC’s iconic “must see TV” catchphrase. The company has pitched the format to media agencies during the course of negotiations over the last few weeks.
Esquire Magazine names Michael Sebastian editor-in-chief.
LAT: Justin Bieber wants to fight Tom Cruise — and no one knows why
Where is the world's most expensive painting? Art dealer says he knows where Leonardo da Vinci's "Salvator Mundi" went after it was bought for $450 million -- it's on the yacht of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
AP: Woodstock 50 in doubt but organizers say in talks with venue
OTD: In 1955 at least 80 people were killed after a collision at Le Mans 24-hour race in which flaming debris from one of the cars was thrown into a packed grandstand.