Good morning, Quartz readers!
WHAT TO WATCH FOR TODAY
Xi Jinping visits Hong Kong. His controversial first trip to the semi-autonomous territory as China’s president will mark the 20th anniversary of Britain’s handover. Widespread demonstrations by pro-democracy groups are expected.
Moon Jae-in meets with Donald Trump. The liberal South Korean president, elected in May, plans to discuss how to handle North Korea. Moon tends to favor engagement with Pyongyang but the US has rejected talks.
Ukraine’s central bank convenes after being hit by hackers.The National Bank of Ukraine will hold a monetary policy meeting in the wake of Tuesday’s Petya ransomware attack, which disproportionately affected the country.
WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING
The US announced plans to ramp up airline security. The Department of Homeland Security won’t ban carry-on laptops in response to a potential ISIL plot, but will require stringent newscreening measures for inbound international flights. If airlines and airports fail to enforce the new standards, the US threatened to bar personal electronic devices, even in the cargo hold.
A private-equity firm said it would buy Staples for $6.9 billion.Sycamore Partners is betting on the US office-supplies chain even as internet shopping roils the traditional retail sector. Staples’s store sales are dropping, but Sycamore sees potential in its delivery unit, which supplies companies directly.
Australian police charged the Vatican treasurer with multiple counts of historic sex abuse. Authorities in the state of Victoria summoned Australian cardinal George Pell to appear before a court in Melbourne. Pell denies the allegations. Considered the third-ranking official in the Catholic Church, he is the most senior member to face allegations of sexual abuse.
Japan reported slowing retail sales. After a strong showing in April, when they shot up 3.2%, retail sales last month increased just 2% from a year ago. Median forecasts had called for 2.6%. Still, it was the seventh straight month of rising retail sales, a trend analysts expect to continue.
QUARTZ OBSESSION INTERLUDE
Max de Haldevang on a US crackdown on shell companies with ties to Russia. “President Donald Trump, who would have to sign the bill into law, has long made ample use of shell companies, which obscure exactly what he owns and owes. A recent analysis by USA Today found that 70% of buyers of Trump properties in the last year were shell companies.” Read more here.
MATTERS OF DEBATE
You should never name a company after yourself. It can lead toall sorts of legal disputes and isn’t worth the potential costs and hassles.
Brown actors like Aziz Ansari have reduced brown women to a punchline. In romantic comedies starring Indian actors, it’s often white women who are pursued.
Jeff Bezos could teach Donald Trump a thing or two about politics. The Amazon founder has been quietly winning points in Washington.
MESSAGE FROM OUR PARTNER
Make your data matter with Jupyter, the new front end for collaborative data science. Managing data isn’t the challenge; transforming it into competitive advantage is. Discover how to scale analytics to create business value from data at JupyterCon in New York from August 22-25. Save 20% on your pass with the code QUARTZ.
Two New York preschools now accept bitcoin. Parents requested the payment option and are now using it.
An Australian bouncy castle kingpin is being charged with arson. He firebombed his competition and then his own business, to collect the insurance.
Couples who argue while sleep-deprived risk seriously damaging their health. It helps if at least one partner has had enough shut-eye.
Airport security is tough on scientists. Researchers often travel with awkward models, including 3D-printed mouse penises.
Thailand’s government blocked The Great Dictator on YouTube. A viewing of the Charlie Chaplin satire had been plannedto celebrate the anniversary of the end of absolute monarchy.
Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, bitcoin tuition, and 3D-printed mouse penises email@example.com. You can follow us on Twitter for updates throughout the day or download our apps for iPhone and Android.