The need to know

The need to know for the week ending 30th July 2021

The need to know from Reuters’ global network of journalists

Global supply chains buckle as virus variant and disasters strike

A new worldwide wave of COVID-19. Natural disasters in China and Germany. A cyber attack targeting key South African ports.

Fed now facing twin inflation, growth risks as virus jumps and supply chains falter

A U.S. Federal Reserve divided over how to respond to fast-rising prices meets this week with the fresh complication of increased coronavirus infections and a global supply chain that, far from sorting out its problems, may be headed for more inflation-inducing trouble.

German business morale down on supply shortages, virus fears

German business morale fell unexpectedly in July on continuing supply chain worries and amid rising coronavirus infections, a survey showed on Monday.

World faces shortage of merchant sailors to crew ships

There could be a shortage of merchant sailors to crew commercial ships in five years if action is not taken to boost numbers, raising risks for global supply chains, a report said on Wednesday.

ASMI expects revenue to grow despite supply chain woes

Dutch semiconductor supplier ASM International (ASMI.AS) expects revenue to grow in the third and fourth quarters on the back of strong chip demand, despite pandemic-related supply chain challenges that continue to impact the company's earnings.

Puma reaffirms positive outlook despite supply chain strain

German sportswear company Puma (PUMG.DE) said on Thursday it remained concerned about the strain the coronavirus pandemic is putting on its supply chain, but reiterated the mid-term outlook for the sector and company remained positive.

Builder Skanska posts profit jump but flags supply chain pressures

Sweden's Skanska (SKAb.ST) on Friday reported a jump in second-quarter profit as building activity rebounds, boosting its shares despite warning of rising pressure on its supply chain.

Intel sales forecast implies rocky second half of 2021 amid supply constraints

Chipmaker Intel Corp (INTC.O) said on Thursday it still faces supply chain constraints and gave an annual sales forecast that implied a weak end of the year.

U.S. metals buyers pay the price of broken supply chains

U.S. buyers of physical aluminium ingot are paying a record premium of 30 cents per lb, or $670 per tonne, to get metal to their plants.

McDonald's to boost diversity among suppliers to 25%

McDonald's Corp (MCD.N) and more than 20 of its largest U.S. suppliers - including beef producer Cargill and chicken processor Tyson Foods (TSN.N) - on Thursday said they will increase diversity among their providers.

China's industrial profit growth slows in June on high raw material prices

Profit growth at China's industrial firms slowed for the fourth straight month in June, as high raw material prices weighed on factories' margins, pointing to some weakness in the recovery of the world's second-biggest economy.

Hasbro ramps up toy supply for holiday season to beat shipping delays

Hasbro Inc (HAS.O) is trying to get around the supply chain bottlenecks set off by the pandemic to deliver toys and boardgames for the holiday season by expanding its shipping operations and advancing its sourcing of products.

U.S. goods trade deficit widens on imports; inventories increase

The U.S. trade deficit in goods increased in June as imports continued to rise amid strong economic activity, suggesting trade likely remained a drag on growth in the second quarter.

UPS shares hit three-month low on worries e-commerce is cooling

 United Parcel Service Inc (UPS.N) shares fell to a three-month low on Tuesday on worries that growth from the pandemic-fuelled e-commerce boom may be fading.

Packaging producer Smurfit says price inflation here to stay

Smurfit Kappa said on Wednesday price inflation is here to stay after Europe’s largest paper packaging producer offset a doubling of waste paper costs and jumps in everything from glue to pallets by increasing prices in the first half of 2021.

Uber's trucking unit to buy logistics planner Transplace for $2.25 bln

Uber Technologies Inc's (UBER.N) trucking business is buying transportation logistics company Transplace for about $2.25 billion from private equity firm TPG Capital, in a deal that is expected to speed up the unit's path to profitability.

S.Africa's Transnet says will soon lift force majeure after cyberattack

South African state logistics firm Transnet said it would soon lift a force majeure for its container terminals that it declared following a cyberattack that disrupted operations.

Rhine re-opens to shipping in south Germany as water drops

Germany’s Rhine river has re-opened to shipping as water levels fell from recent highs in the last southern stretches blocked after last week’s record rains, authorities said on Friday.

Ever Given, the ship that blocked the Suez Canal, arrives in Rotterdam

The container ship Ever Given, which got stuck in the Suez Canal for six days in March, arrived in the Dutch port of Rotterdam on Thursday after being released by authorities in Egypt.

Cyber attack disrupts major South African port operations

A cyber attack has disrupted container operations at the South African port of Cape Town, an email seen by Reuters on Thursday said.

Russia to build first LNG-powered icebreakers for Arctic sea route

Russia plans to build its first batch of icebreakers that are powered by liquified natural gas, a top official said on Friday, returning to an idea that was put on hold.

From elsewhere around the web:

UPS: Peak demand projected to exceed capacity by 5M packages daily. [Supply Chain Dive]

DP World reports record first half volumes for UK. [Port Technology]

Warning: Book now or ‘Christmas may be cancelled’. [Freight Waves]

Typhoon brings more supply chain chaos in China, closing air, sea and rail hubs. [The Loadstar]

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