The need to know

The need to know for the week ending 18th November 2022

The need to know from Reuters’ global network of journalists

FedEx's freight unit to furlough workers

Nov 14 (Reuters) - FedEx Corp's (FDX.N) freight division is furloughing employees in some U.S. markets as current business conditions are hurting its volumes, the package-delivery company said on Monday.

Column: U.S. container freight is shrinking

LONDON, Nov 16 (Reuters) - Container freight volumes at the largest U.S. ports were down 3.8% in September compared with the same month a year earlier, confirming the slackening of merchandise trade and downturn in the business cycle.

Alibaba quarterly revenue misses expectations as spending slows

(Reuters) - Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd posted a low single-digit rise in quarterly revenue on Thursday, slightly below expectations, as COVID-19 curbs and a worsening economic outlook stifled consumer spending.

Slowed producer prices another plus for Fed's inflation fight

WASHINGTON, Nov 15 (Reuters) - Prices paid by U.S. businesses rose less than expected in October with some key components registering an out-and-out decline, another sign inflation may be easing and another data point in favor of a slower pace of Federal Reserve rate increases.

Analysis: Unilever leads pack on price rises as consumer goods industry squeezed

LONDON, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Unilever (ULVR.L) has raised prices faster than its biggest rivals P&G (PG.N) and Nestle (NESN.S) since the middle of 2021, in a replay of its strategy during the 2007-09 financial crisis.

China's diesel exports may fall on new 2023 transport mandate - traders

SINGAPORE, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Chinese state refiners may cut diesel exports to keep a bigger portion of their production for domestic markets in early 2023 as a new mandate from Beijing could disrupt local supplies, several industry sources said.

Germany's Scholz visits Vietnam as manufacturers eye shift from China

HANOI, Nov 13 (Reuters) - German Chancellor Olaf Scholz discussed energy and trade ties with Vietnam's Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh during a visit to Hanoi on Sunday, the first for a German leader in more than a decade.

Spanish truckers suspend strike, citing 'harassment campaign' by authorities

MADRID, Nov 15 (Reuters) - A group representing part of Spain's truck drivers said on Tuesday it was suspending an indefinite strike a day after it started.

EV battery makers race to develop cheaper cell materials, skirting China

Nov 15 (Reuters) - U.S. and European startups are racing to develop new batteries using two abundant, cheap materials — sodium and sulfur — that could reduce China's battery dominance, ease looming supply bottlenecks and lead to mass-market electric vehicles (EVs).

Eggs rationing at some British supermarkets as avian flu hits supply

LONDON, Nov 15 (Reuters) - Some British supermarkets have started to ration customers' purchase of eggs after supplies were disrupted by avian flu.

Chip firm MediaTek CEO sees manufacturers expanding supply chain beyond Taiwan

Nov 13 (Reuters) - Tensions between China and the United States are pushing some manufacturing companies to talk about expanding some of their supply chain beyond Taiwan, although it’s “incremental,” the head of Taiwan’s most important smartphone chip design firm told Reuters over the weekend.

GM's North American battery supply chain is key to EV profits

DETROIT, Nov 14 (Reuters) - General Motors Co (GM.N) plans to add more links to its North American battery supply chain, adding to roughly 20 deals so far, in a key strategy to help the Detroit automaker narrow the gap with Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) in electric vehicle profitability.

White House says more infrastructure spending coming, rejects inflation link

WASHINGTON, Nov 15 (Reuters) - The White House on Tuesday said it had pushed out $185 billion in funding under a $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure law passed last year, with that same amount or more to follow in 2023, but denied the funding would fuel inflation.

Stellantis strikes deal with Infineon to secure silicon carbide chips

BERLIN, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Global carmaker Stellantis (STLA.MI) has signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding (MoU) with German chipmaker Infineon (IFXGn.DE) for a multi-year supply of silicon carbide semiconductors, Infineon said in a statement on Monday.

German antitrust watchdog widens Amazon probe under new regulation

 BERLIN, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Germany's antitrust watchdog said on Monday it had expanded two probes into U.S. e-commerce giant (AMZN.O) making use of new regulation allowing it to prohibit any anti-competitive behaviour at an earlier stage.

Putin calls for price controls as Russian car sales crash to record low

MOSCOW (Reuters) - President Vladimir Putin urged the Russian government on Wednesday to control car prices, as one industry head said Western sanctions could send annual sales crashing to below 1 million for the first time since records began.

China's beats revenue estimates as lockdowns drive online shopping

Nov 18 (Reuters) - E-commerce firm Inc (9618.HK), posted an 11.4% rise in third-quarter revenue on Friday, beating analysts' estimates as COVID-19 lockdowns in China led more consumers to shop online.

Super-voters override self-driving truck controls

If only it weren’t so easy to see what’s behind the latest mess at TuSimple (TSP.O). The self-driving truck technology developer has descended into corporate governance chaos after the ousted chief executive, Xiaodi Hou, turned around and fired the entire board of directors.

Third U.S. union rejects national rail contract deal

WASHINGTON, Nov 14 (Reuters) - A third U.S. rail union voted on Monday to reject a tentative national contract reached in September, but expects to continue negotiating to reach a deal.

Euro zone trade gap smaller than expected, Russia deficit surges

BRUSSELS, Nov 15 (Reuters) - The euro zone swung to a large trade deficit in September from a small surplus a year earlier due to a surge in the costs of imported energy in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, but the deficit was smaller than expected, data showed on Tuesday.

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