November 1, 2018 / 11:43 AM / 15 days ago

Thursday Morning Briefing

Good morning. From our latest coverage of the U.S. midterm elections to Amazon’s slow push into Brazil’s retail jungle, catch up on the news with the Morning Briefing. 

A man uses a torch to walk through a park during cold fog at night in Athboy, Ireland, October 31, 2018. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

POLITICS

Democrats and advocacy groups are scrambling in courtrooms and on the ground to resist efforts they say will stack the deck against minority voters likely to back Democrats in next Tuesday’s elections.

If Democrats win control, nearly every aspect of President Trump’s presidency could face swift examination – from his long-elusive tax returns to possible business ties with Russia.

Oprah Winfrey is lending her star power to Georgia Democrat Stacey Abrams, who is vying to become the first female black governor in the United States. The media mogul has long championed Democratic Party causes, and some fans earlier this year tried to encourage her to run against Trump in 2020.

SPECIAL REPORT

Roughly 20 percent of the world’s wild-caught fish never go near a plate. Instead, they’re ground up to make fishmeal. Special Reports goes inside the $160 billion aquaculture industry, the latest installment in the ‘Ocean Shock’ series that explores how climate change is disrupting the world’s marine life.

WORLD

Cocaine production is beginning to creep into Central America, a development that could bring the supply of the drug closer to the United States and create a new security risk for an already troubled region.

The economic impact of the intensifying trade war between Washington and Beijing appeared to deepen last month with factory activity and export orders weakening across Asia, but analysts warned the worst was yet to come.

COMMENTARY

There are at least five reasons why the next round of U.S. sanctions against Iran - due to start going into effect in November - will fail, writes Seyed Hossein Mousavian, a former spokesman for Iran’s nuclear negotiators. These include a rising oil price as other regional producers are unable to offset the loss of Iranian oil; the possibility that Europe can create a financial system separate from the U.S. dollar and a global desire to preserve the Iran nuclear accord. "This, coupled with American withdrawal from the international scene, has the potential to transform international power politics, shifting from an American-led system to a multi-polar world, with regional actors playing a more substantial role."

TECH

Silicon Valley technology giants such as Facebook and Google have grown so dominant they may need to be broken up, unless challengers or changes in taste reduce their clout, the inventor of the World Wide Web told Reuters.

Volvo Cars has teamed up with Chinese search engine operator Baidu to develop a self-driving taxi for China, opening another frontier to secure its place in the robotaxi market while its Uber supply deal remains in limbo.

Amazon.com is struggling to ramp up its operations in Brazil, a promising market that so far has proven difficult for the world’s largest online retailer to crack, according to nearly twenty people with knowledge of the situation.

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