The need to know
The need to know for the week ending 2nd February 2024
The need to know from Reuters’ global network of journalists
Attacks on vessels by Iranian-backed Houthi militants in Yemen have disrupted international commerce on the shortest shipping route between Europe and Asia.
To avoid the Red Sea, the supertanker Grand Bonanza set out early this month on a roughly 40-day journey carrying 1.8 million barrels of Abu Dhabi crude for TotalEnergies from the United Arab Emirates all the way around Africa to France.
Ships are calling the Spanish port of Barcelona with a delay of 10 to 15 days as they have to travel around Africa to avoid potential attacks in the Red Sea, port chief Lluis Salvado told reporters on Monday.
Global factories delivered a largely patchy performance at the start of 2024, surveys showed on Thursday, as new orders spurred momentum in the United States, but soft Chinese demand left Asia's economies on a shaky footing and disruption to Red Sea shipping delayed deliveries in Europe.
EU countries and lawmakers on Thursday agreed to rules which will require Europe-based companies to prioritise production of key products to prevent a supply chain crisis such as that prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia's Ukraine invasion.
When the Maersk Tanjong set sail from Thailand on Dec. 2, headed towards the Suez Canal to reach the U.S. East Coast, it was carrying cargo for retailers and clothing brands including Walmart (WMT.N), opens new tab, H&M (HMb.ST), opens new tab, Adidas (ADSGn.DE), opens new tab and ASOS , import and shipping data shows.
Adidas deliveries to retailers are being delayed by Red Sea shipping disruptions, the CEO of the sportswear company told analysts on Thursday, adding that soaring freight rates are weighing on gross margins.
The World Trade Organization will likely cut its estimates for goods trade growth for 2023 and 2024 due to a less buoyant global economy and the potential impact of disruptions to shipping through the Suez Canal, its chief economist said.
Britain unveiled a package of post-Brexit trading measures on Wednesday to strengthen Northern Ireland's place in the United Kingdom, a move welcomed by local politicians who are now expected to restore a power-sharing government.
A decision by Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger to quit West Africa's economic and political bloc reverses decades of regional integration, leaving millions of people in limbo, and is likely to deepen the three junta-led countries' ties with Russia.
Teradyne (TER.O), opens new tab, a supplier of semiconductor testing equipment, pulled manufacturing worth about $1 billion out of China last year, a Teradyne spokesperson said on Monday, after U.S. export regulations led to supply chain disruptions.
A strong margin recovery for consumer goods giants could face a setback as easing input costs after several quarters of biting inflation are offset by cautious customer spending even as product prices start to decline.
Jan 26 (Reuters) - U.S. logistics startup Flexport is planning to lay off about 20% of its workforce in the coming weeks, The Information reported on Friday citing people familiar with the matter.
United Parcel Service (UPS.N), opens new tab plans to cut 12,000 jobs and explore strategic options for Coyote, its volatile trucking brokerage business, after the world's largest parcel delivery company forecast full-year revenue below Wall Street's target.
Freight forwarder DSV (DSV.CO), opens new tab on Thursday posted a fourth-quarter operating profit before special items below expectations as it took another hit from declining freight rates and consumer demand.
Hapag-Lloyd (HLAG.DE), opens new tab posted a wider-than-expected fourth-quarter operating loss due to lower transport volumes following the attacks on ships in the Red Sea, sending the container shipping group's shares down sharply.
Indian freight operating company Mahindra Logistics (MALO.NS), opens new tab reported a loss for a fourth straight quarter, hurt by mounting costs and a persistent decline in its express cargo business amid stiff competition.
Jan 31 (Reuters) - U.S. freight broker C.H. Robinson (CHRW.O), opens new tab missed analysts' estimates for fourth-quarter results on Wednesday, hurt by lower freight demand, sending its shares down about 4% in extended trading.
The global apparel and footwear industry is one of the biggest in the world. It also has the dubious distinction of being synonymous with endemic human rights violations.
The International Monetary Fund on Tuesday edged its forecast for global economic growth higher, upgrading the outlook for both the United States and China - the world's two largest economies - and citing faster-than-expected easing of inflation.
China's factory activity expanded in January thanks to stable growth in output, quicker logistics and the first rise in new export orders since June, helping lift business confidence to a nine-month high, a private-sector survey showed on Thursday.
The euro zone's economy stagnated last year, underperforming the rest of the world as former powerhouse Germany struggled with an industrial malaise that has no end in sight, data showed on Tuesday.
U.S. worker productivity grew faster than expected in the fourth quarter, keeping unit labor costs contained and giving the Federal Reserve another boost in the fight against inflation.
British businesses started 2024 with their confidence at the highest level in nearly two years but their plans for more staffing are not translating into accelerating wage growth, according to a survey published on Wednesday.
German car sales are lagging the recovery in the global passenger car market, with 2024 sales expected to be 25% below pre-pandemic levels, data from German auto association VDA showed on Tuesday.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Thursday urged automakers such as Tesla, Volkswagen and BYD that produce cars in China to do more to ensure materials that could be made using Uyghur forced labour do not enter their supply chain.
China's light vehicle production will drop 11.5% this year to around 21.6 million vehicles and will rebound by 7.5% next year, research firm IHS Markit predicted on Monday.
Iveco Group (IVG.MI), opens new tab and Hyundai Motor (005380.KS), opens new tab have struck a deal for the South Korean group to supply a fully electric light commercial vehicle to the Italian truck and bus maker, expanding an existing partnership agreement, they said on Thursday.
Tesla (TSLA.O), opens new tab is expanding its battery facility in Sparks, Nevada to bring the supply chain for cheaper lithium iron phosphate batteries (LFP) to the United States, Bloomberg News reported on Wednesday.
Some Chinese automakers have had to delay deliveries of flagship models due to production issues with a computing unit made by tech giant Huawei (HWT.UL), five people with knowledge of the matter said.
India expects its economy to grow around 7% in the next fiscal year despite new geopolitical risks emerging from the Red Sea crisis that could affect global inflation and economic output.
Attacks on shipping vessels by Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in the crucial Red Sea shipping lane have disrupted shipping in the Suez Canal, the fastest sea route between Asia and Europe.
Houthi attacks near the Suez Canal are slowing global trade. In this Exchange podcast, Zvi Schreiber, CEO of shipping platform Freightos, discusses how the sector was caught by surprise, but excess container ships and more air cargo capacity are helping limit the immediate pain.
H&M's new CEO on Wednesday said Red Sea disruptions to shipping are a concern for the fashion retailer, but that higher transport rates are not yet hitting profit.
Commodities trader Trafigura said on Saturday it was assessing the security risks of further Red Sea voyages after firefighters put out a blaze on a tanker attacked by Yemen's Houthi group a day earlier.
Whirlpool Corp (WHR.N), opens new tab said on Tuesday its European business would start feeling the impact of the Red Sea crisis, as vessels sailing through one of the world's most important shipping routes come under attacks from the Iran-backed Houthi militia.
Attacks on cargo vessels in the Red Sea by Yemen-based Houthi rebels are unlikely to end soon, forcing shipping companies to avoid the route through the Suez Canal, the head of Germany's Hapag-Lloyd (HLAG.DE), opens new tab told reporters on Wednesday.
Global air freight rates have climbed for the first time in seven weeks ahead of Asia's lunar new year and as attacks on Red Sea shipping prompt companies to secure costlier air cargo space.
A ship carrying around 14,000 sheep and 2,000 cattle is marooned off the coast of Australia in sweltering heat after it was forced to abandon a trip through the Red Sea, causing outcry from people concerned about the animals' welfare.
EU member states want to launch a Red Sea naval mission by mid-February to protect ships from attacks by Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi militia and could decide its command structure on Wednesday, foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said.
More ships carrying grain were diverted from the Suez Canal to sailings around the Cape of Good Hope this week after attacks on vessels in the Red Sea, shipping analysts said on Friday.
Chinese electric vehicle (EV) battery giant CATL (300750.SZ), opens new tab forecast net profit growth of up to 48.1% in 2023 on Tuesday, representing sharply weaker growth than the previous year as it grappled with slowing demand and stiff competition.
The European Union will need 1.5 trillion euros ($1.6 trillion)per year of investments to meet its 2050 net zero emissions target, research backed by Green EU lawmakers said on Monday.
Whether Amazon.com (AMZN.O), opens new tab can cash in on its delivery heft by boosting fee revenue from its "Buy With Prime" service after a 2022 overhaul of its logistics network will be a big focus for investors when the e-commerce giant reports fourth-quarter results on Thursday.
The damaged Vale Beijing, the world's largest iron-ore carrier, was being moved from berth in Brazil for repairs, opening up space at a port responsible for about 10 percent of the world's iron ore exports, the harbor pilot's office in Sao Luis said on Tuesday.
Hackers linked to the Chinese government are targeting critical U.S. infrastructure, preparing to cause "real-world harm" to Americans, FBI Director Christopher Wray told a congressional committee on Wednesday.
Protesting farmers have blocked the distribution centres of Colruyt (COLR.BR), opens new tab, one of Belgium's biggest supermarket chains, a spokesperson confirmed, while local media reported that distribution centres of discount supermarket chain Lidl were also targeted.
A letter by two top German ministers on Thursday suggested the government would oppose a draft European law which would require large companies to take action if they find their supply chains employing child labour or damaging the environment.
The U.S. Department of Defense plans to develop a program to estimate prices and predict supplies of nickel, cobalt and other critical minerals, a move aimed at boosting market transparency but one that throws a new, uncertain variable into global metals markets.
Russia has reduced gasoline exports to non-CIS countries to compensate for unplanned repairs at refineries, the Ministry of Energy said on Wednesday, as the country grappled with the impact of fires and drone attacks on its energy infrastructure.
India's exports of low-sulphur diesel to Europe are poised to hit a fresh two-year low in January, after an unprecedented high last month, as Red Sea security risks drive up freight costs, trade sources and analysts say.
Dixon Technologies (India) (DIXO.NS), opens new tab reported an 86% growth in third-quarter profit on Wednesday, benefiting from growing demand for technology gadgets and rapid expansion of electronics manufacturing in the country.
China's imports of unwrought aluminium more than doubled year-on-year in 2023 and were the second highest annual total since the start of the century.
IKEA is investing in price cuts on some products across a range of countries, including Belgium, Canada and India, as the furniture retailer aims to unwind increases it introduced in 2022.
Europe's solar panel manufacturing industry has urged the European Union to step in with emergency measures to avoid local firms shutting down under price pressure from Chinese imports, a letter seen by Reuters showed.
An Ancora Holdings-led investor group has taken a roughly $1 billion stake in Norfolk Southern (NSC.N), opens new tab and nominated a majority slate of directors to the railroad operator's board in a bid to oust CEO Alan Shaw, the Wall Street Journal reported.