The need to know

The need to know for the week ending 3rd May 2024

The need to know from Reuters’ global network of journalists

Germany's struggle to clean up its supply chains has lessons for Europe

German engineering company BAUCH makes machines and engine components out of materials mined in China, Africa or South America that pass through multiple hands and processes before they reach its factories in southern Germany and China.

PolicyWatch: Billions of dollars of materials being squandered in e-waste mountain, says U.N.

When Ruediger Kuehr started asking municipalities in his home country of Germany what they would do when the hundreds of thousands of electronic tablets distributed to school students during the pandemic came to the end of their lives, he was met with blank faces.

EU needs 8 times more car charging points per year to meet demand, ACEA finds

The European Union needs to install almost eight times more electric vehicle charging points per year than it did in 2023 to meet forecast demand, European autos group ACEA said on Monday.

Houthis attack four ships in Indian Ocean, Red Sea

Yemen's Houthis said on Tuesday they targeted the MSC Orion container ship in a drone attack in the Indian Ocean as part of their ongoing campaign against international shipping in solidarity with Palestinians against Israel's military actions in Gaza.

PREVIEW Investors wait to see Red Sea in shippers' Q1 numbers

European shipping firms Maersk (MAERSKb.CO) and Hapag-Lloyd (HLAG.DE) are unlikely to get a big boost from soaring freight rates due to the Red Sea crisis in the first quarter, reinforcing worries about overcapacity in the long run.

Heavy oil shortage spells higher cost for shippers, road builders

Mexican export cuts and a rerouting of Canadian output are shrinking already limited supplies of heavy crude in the Atlantic basin, driving up refiners' costs with a likely knock-on effect to industries ranging from shipping and construction to Middle Eastern power plants.

Hapag Lloyd CEO says he expects Red Sea crisis to end this year

The CEO of German container shipper Hapag-Lloyd (HLAG.DE) said on Monday he expects that the Red Sea crisis can be overcome before the end of the year.

Maersk raises profit guidance on strong demand and Red Sea disruption

Shipping group Maersk (MAERSKb.CO) raised its full-year profit guidance after reporting first-quarter earnings on Thursday, citing strong demand and higher freight rates as ships sail for longer to avoid conflict in the Red Sea.

Production at three Stellantis plants hit by strike to restart in early May

Production at three Stellantis (STLAM.MI) assembly plants in Europe will restart in the first days of May, a spokesman said on Tuesday, after the automaker found alternative solutions for the sourcing of parts.

Canadian railway workers at CN, CPKC vote to strike, says union

Thousands of railway workers in Canada at Canadian National Railway (CN) (CNR.TO) and Canadian Pacific Kansas City (CPKC) (CP.TO) have voted overwhelmingly to strike as early as May 22, the union said on Wednesday.

ICSG forecasts copper supply pressures but cautious on demand

The International Copper Study Group (ICSG) has cut its forecast supply surplus for this year due to much lower-than-expected mine production.

Exclusive: Near-record high LME prices a magnet for Chinese copper exports

China's copper producers are planning to export up to 100,000 metric tons of metal, the largest volume in 12 years, aiming to cool a rally that has propelled prices towards record highs and hit their order books, three industry sources said.

Von der Leyen’s China plan is all bark and no bite

Ursula von der Leyen has taken a tough line against China in public.

China to extend tariff exemptions for imports of some US products until Nov 30

China will extend tariff exemptions for imports of some U.S. products until Nov. 30, the finance ministry said in a statement on Monday.

Analysts cut EU carbon price forecasts on 2023 emission slump

Analysts have cut price forecasts for European Union carbon permits for 2024 to 2026 following record low figures last year for emissions covered by Europe's carbon market.

Beijing auto show: Foreign automakers eager for Chinese partners

Global automakers including Volkswagen and Toyota (7203.T) came to this year's Beijing auto show looking to catch up to surging China EV makers that are dominating the world's largest auto market.

Weak demand, new model ramp up hit Europe's top automakers

European car giants Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz and Stellantis all posted lower sales and first-quarter revenue on Tuesday as they geared up to launch new models, faced higher costs and were hit by weaker demand for new cars as interest rates remain high.

US labor official calls on companies to exit China's Xinjiang

International companies cannot responsibly operate in Xinjiang and should leave the western Chinese region due to forced labor concerns, a U.S. Labor Department official said on Tuesday.


Fast-fashion giant Shein wants to sell skincare, toothpaste and toys, too

Online fast-fashion retailer Shein is courting brands like toothpaste conglomerate Colgate-Palmolive and toymaker Hasbro as it tries to sell more household names on its platform.

US to test ground beef in states with bird-flu outbreaks in dairy cows

The U.S. government said on Monday it is collecting samples of ground beef at retail stores in states with outbreaks of bird flu in dairy cows for testing, but remains confident the meat supply is safe.

Soaring cocoa prices put spotlight on Hershey, Mondelez earnings

Hershey (HSY.N) and Mondelez International (MDLZ.O) investors will be eager to see how the chocolate makers plan to tackle the recent surge in cocoa and sugar prices when they report first quarter results this week.

Exclusive: Tesla retreats from next-generation ‘gigacasting’ manufacturing process

Tesla (TSLA.O) has backed away from an ambitious plan for innovations in gigacasting, its pioneering manufacturing process, according to two sources familiar with the matter, in another sign that the electric-vehicle maker is retrenching amid falling sales and rising competition.

Rivian receives $827 mln in incentives to expand Illinois facility, shares jump

Rivian Automotive (RIVN.O) said on Thursday it has received $827 million in an incentive package from the State of Illinois to expand operations at its Normal facility.

Norway's wealth fund backs bid for PepsiCo biodiversity risk assessment

Norway's sovereign wealth fund plans to back a shareholder proposal demanding PepsiCo (PEP.O) conduct a biodiversity risk assessment to gauge how vulnerable the soft drink and snacks giant's operations are to biodiversity loss.

Graphite miners lobby US govt to impose levy on China-sourced EV material

North American graphite miners are lobbying the US government to impose a 25% tariff on three graphite products sourced from China in order to counter Beijing's monopoly on a key material used in automobile batteries.

US moves to bar Huawei, other Chinese telecoms from certifying wireless equipment

The Federal Communications Commission is moving to prevent Huawei, ZTE (000063.SZ) and other foreign companies deemed to pose U.S. national security concerns from certifying wireless equipment, officials told Reuters on Wednesday.

Nokian Tyres' losses deepen on Red Sea crisis, strikes

Finland's Nokian Tyres (TYRES.HE) on Monday posted a deeper-than-expected operating loss for the first quarter following its exit from Russia, citing negative impacts from the Red Sea crisis and political strikes in Finland.

How Finnish strikes over labour reforms are affecting companies

The SAK trade union association said on April 4 that Finnish labour unions would suspend a four-week strike which began on March 11.

Nigeria secures $600 million Maersk investment in seaport infrastructure

Nigeria secured a $600 million investment in seaport infrastructure from Danish shipping company A.P. Moller-Maersk (MAERSKb.CO), the presidency said in a statement on Sunday.

Peru seeks to avoid arbitration over Chinese-built mega port

The Peruvian government is looking to avoid an international arbitration process which could be filed by Chinese port operator Cosco Shipping over a legal dispute regarding exclusivity rights to a massive facility being built by the firm, an official said on Monday.

India widens spices probe amid contamination concerns

India's food safety regulator said on Thursday it had ordered testing and inspections at all companies making spice mixes, widening an investigation into the sector as global regulators look into suspected contamination in two popular local brands.

MercadoLibre net profit surges, driven by Brazil, Mexico

Latin America e-commerce giant MercadoLibre (MELI.O) said on Thursday its first-quarter net profit surged 71% from a year earlier, beating analysts' estimates as its performance in Brazil and Mexico offset some negative effects in Argentina.

Ocado, Lidl and M&S are UK's fastest growing grocers, says NIQ

Online supermarket Ocado (OCDO.L), discounter Lidl and upmarket food seller Marks & Spencer (MKS.L) were Britain's fastest growing grocers over the last quarter, industry data showed on Thursday.

Australia's Coles eyes more product volume as cooling inflation lures shoppers

Australian No.2 grocery chain Coles (COL.AX) said on Tuesday it was asking suppliers to ship more product after a slowdown in inflation encouraged shoppers to buy more, pushing its March quarter supermarket sales higher than analysts forecast.

What to expect in 2024: Forecasts for GDP, inflation and other assets

Global growth will likely slow this year and major central banks across the globe have indicated interest rate cuts this year.

China to step up support for economy, flexibly use policy tools, Politburo says

China will step up support for the economy with prudent monetary and proactive fiscal policies, including interest rates and bank reserve requirement ratios (RRR), the Politburo of the Communist Party was quoted by state media as saying on Tuesday.

EU industry group downgrades steel demand forecast for 2024 again

A European Union industry group on Monday downgraded its 2024 steel demand outlook for the second time in a matter of months, projecting growth of 3.2%, due to geopolitical tensions, economic uncertainty and high interest rates.

For Japan Inc, the weak yen may be too much of a good thing

Corporate Japan is starting to wonder if the weak yen has become too much of a good thing.

Euro zone rebounds from recession as inflation steadies

The euro zone economy rebounded in the first quarter from a mild recession as Germany returned to growth and expansion accelerated elsewhere, while inflation steadied to reinforce the case for the European Central Bank to cut interest rates.

Euro zone factory activity takes turn for the worse in April, PMI survey shows

The downturn in manufacturing activity across the euro zone deepened in April due to crumbling demand despite factories cutting prices, pushing firms to reduce headcount again, a survey showed on Thursday.

US manufacturing sector regresses in April; prices paid near two-year high

U.S. manufacturing contracted in April amid a decline in orders after briefly expanding in the prior month, while a measure of prices paid by factories for inputs approached a two-year high.

Commercial aircraft, motor vehicles lift US factory orders

New orders for U.S.-manufactured goods increased solidly in March, boosted by demand for commercial aircraft and motor vehicles, but gains elsewhere were moderate.

US consumer confidence deteriorates in April

U.S. consumer confidence deteriorated in April, falling to its lowest level in more than 1-1/2 years amid worries about the labor market and income, a survey showed on Tuesday.

Solid US job, wage growth expected in April

U.S. job growth probably slowed to a still-solid clip in April, with wages maintaining their steady rise, which would allay fears that the economy was stalling after activity pulled back considerably in the first quarter.

China industrial profits fall in March, stir doubts about economic recovery

China's industrial profits fell in March and slowed gains for the quarter compared to the first two months, official data showed on Saturday, raising doubts about the strength of a recovery for the world's second-biggest economy.

India's April factory growth eases but still strong, PMI shows

Growth in India's manufacturing sector slowed marginally in April but remained robust thanks to strong demand, prompting firms to ramp up purchases of raw materials at a near-record pace, a business survey showed on Thursday.

Japan's factory activity falls at a slower pace

Japan's factory activity shrank at a slower pace in April as declines in output and new orders eased, a private-sector survey showed on Wednesday.

UK factories slip back into downturn as cost pressures rise, PMI shows

British manufacturing fell back into contraction in April and cost pressures escalated, although the pace of decline was a little less marked than first feared, a survey showed on Wednesday.

Canada risks losing investment to Mexico as labor productivity skids

Canada's low labor productivity level puts the country at risk of losing of billions of dollars of investments to Mexico, as the so-called nearshoring boom spurs companies to move supply chains to North America, economists and lobby groups say.

Mexico's economy continued weak growth in first quarter, poll shows

Mexico's economy continued to grow at a weak rate in the first quarter, due largely to a drop in manufacturing and agriculture that was only partially offset by services, according to a Reuters poll on Monday.

Canadian factory PMI falls in April as downturn hits one year

Canadian manufacturing activity slowed in April, extending a lengthy period of contraction for the sector, as output and new orders fell at an accelerated pace and inflation pressures picked up, data showed on Wednesday.

South Korea's chip-led export growth to quicken in April: Reuters poll

South Korea's exports are expected to have risen at a faster pace in April, extending gains for a seventh straight month on strong chip sales, a Reuters poll showed on Monday.

Taiwan's economy seen expanding 5.6% in first quarter on strong exports: Reuters poll

Taiwan's trade-dependent economy likely grew faster in the first quarter, supported by a rebound in exports amid upbeat demand for the technology that powers artificial intelligence (AI) applications, a Reuters poll showed on Monday.

South African factory activity improves in April - Absa PMI

South African manufacturing activity improved in April, a Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) survey showed on Thursday, helped by there being no rolling power cuts for the whole of last month.

Cummins revenue misses estimates as truck demand stays on slow lane

U.S. truck engine maker Cummins Inc (CMI.N) missed Wall Street estimates for first-quarter sales on Thursday, dragged down by waning demand in China and weak freight activity.

VW's trucks arm Traton tops forecasts even as markets normalise

Volkswagen's truck making unit Traton (8TRA.DE) beat first-quarter sales and profit forecasts on Friday, helped by a rise in average prices, even as demand weakens after a strong 2023.

Weakness in Europe drives down Daimler Truck shares

Daimler Truck (DTGGe.DE) shares fell as much as 6.5% on Friday as the German truck and busmaker highlighted weakness in its European market after reporting first-quarter results that beat forecasts.

Planemaker Embraer CEO says supply chain has been improving

The chief executive of Brazil's Embraer (EMBR3.SA) said on Friday that supply chain issues impacting planemakers have been improving but some challenges remain.

Spirit Aero says it has a new plan to address Boeing 737 MAX parts demand

Spirit AeroSystems (SPR.N) said it has developed a plan that gives it “a high degree of confidence” to meet U.S. planemaker Boeing's (BA.N) rate and quality demands for parts for the 737 MAX jet, the company told Reuters on Wednesday.

Japan's proposed export curbs will impact normal trade, China says

The export controls proposed by Japan related to semiconductors will seriously affect normal trade between Chinese and Japanese enterprises, China's commerce ministry said on Monday.

UAE, Ukraine conclude talks on bilateral trade deal

The United Arab Emirates and Ukraine have completed negotiations for a bilateral trade deal, according to a joint statement released on Monday, ahead of its formal signing.

Lloyd's insurers expect moderate Baltimore bridge claims

Lloyd's of London (SOLYD.UL) insurers Hiscox (HSX.L) and Lancashire (LRE.L) do not expect large insurance claims from the collapse of Baltimore's Francis Scott Key Bridge in March that caused widespread disruption, they said on Thursday.

Insurer Chubb readies $350 mln payout tied to Baltimore bridge collapse

Chubb (CB.BN), which had insured Baltimore's Francis Scott Key Bridge, is getting ready to pay $350 million to the state of Maryland, in what could be the first major payout tied to the collapsing of the bridge in March.

comments powered by Disqus