Market Intelligence

Market Intelligence gives you a quick look at news and trends around the world that reflect four broad themes influencing today’s global marketplace. We call these themes The Infinite Loop.

Raw Materials & Resources / 02.15.17

China forecasts corn imports at decade low

Innovation & Transformation / 02.13.17

Printable skin?

Many things are made by 3-D printing these days – perhaps soon including body tissue. Bioprinting, as it’s called, is still largely experimental but has enormous potential to save lives and may revolutionize medicine.

Innovation & Transformation / 02.08.17

A smart land drone

Italy’s Piaggio Group, the creator of Vespa scooter, has continued to design scooters, motorcycles and lightweight commercial vehicles, selling them worldwide. But some seven decades after the Vespa’s debut, Michele Colaninno, CEO of Immsi S.p.A., the holding company that controls the Piaggio Group, is plotting the company’s next big move, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Innovation & Transformation / 02.06.17

Atomic printing

Computer technology has affected nearly every facet of the economy. Now it may even be ready to take manufacturing – particularly on the nano-level. Researchers at MIT have discovered a way to use graphene – an atomic-scale hexagonal carbon material – to print 3-D objects.

Great American Companies / 02.03.17

Big game, big party

Time to relax with friends, enjoy some comfort food and cast your vote for the most hilarious commercials. Our infographic shows who’s watching, who’s spending and how much it all costs.

Raw Materials & Resources / 02.01.17

Down Under delay

Australia's plans for a huge increase in its production of liquefied natural gas (LNG) are being dealt a big blow by a series of production delays, as energy companies struggle with technical problems and cost overruns, according to Reuters.

Global Rebalancing / 01.30.17

Indian aviation booming

After a long rough patch, Indian aviation is finally taking off, but that burst of growth is now taking a toll on the industry's infrastructure, according to Reuters.

Innovation & Transformation / 01.25.17

Smart roads a go

According to the Wall Street Journal, transit planners believe it's only a matter of time and money until self-driving cars travel on "smart-roads" that communicate directly with vehicles to help them move as quickly and safely as possible.

Great American Companies / 01.23.17

Blockchain comes to the back-office

According the Bloomberg, Depository Trust & Clearing Corp., Wall Street’s largest back-office processing service, is partnering with IBM to upgrade how payments and record-keeping for credit-default swaps are handled by putting the system on a blockchain by early next year.

Global Rebalancing / 01.19.17

Antacids to relieve climate change

As long-term global average temperatures steadily rise, and international efforts to address them fall short, some scientists and engineers are working on increasingly desperate solutions to the symptoms of global climate change, according to Bloomberg.

Global Rebalancing / 01.17.17

Japan dethrones China

According to Reuters, China will soon be dethroned by Japan as the top holder of U.S. government debt. Why? The Chinese central bank has been dipping into its foreign exchange reserves to support the yuan, while its Japanese counterpart has been content to allow the yen to weaken.

Global Rebalancing / 01.05.17

California dreamin’

Hyundai Merchant Marine Co. and Mediterranean Shipping Co. are the leading contenders to buy the biggest container terminal in Long Beach, Calif., according to the Wall Street Journal, in a joint bid that may bolster the Korean operator’s effort to join a major shipping alliance.

Raw Materials & Resources / 01.04.17

Cool it!

Large web companies and data center operators are increasingly deploying water-cooled systems to cool computing and data storage systems, according to Datacenter Dynamics.

Innovation & Transformation / 12.28.16

The really fast lane

According to Bloomberg, Amazon has unveiled technology that will let shoppers grab groceries without having to scan and pay for them -- eliminating the checkout line.

Global Rebalancing / 12.22.16

ECB surprise

According to CNBC, the European Central Bank (ECB) announced a continuation of the bank's generous asset-buying program on December 12, although a reduced pace of purchases is set to start from April next year.

Global Rebalancing / 12.19.16

New sanctions for North Korea

Reuters reports the U.N. Security Council imposed new sanctions on North Korea on Wednesday aimed at cutting its annual export revenue by a quarter, after Pyongyang carried out its fifth and largest nuclear test so far in September.

Innovation & Transformation / 12.14.16

Nike self-tying shoes

Nike began selling a pricey sneaker with self-tying laces this month, a high-stakes test of the company’s technology investments and efforts to sell more products directly to consumers, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Great American Companies / 12.09.16

U.S. New Year's Spending

Few of us follow through on our New Year's resolutions, but if we did, they have the potential to really add up.

Great American Companies / 12.06.16

Netflix enables offline binging

Netflix Inc. has added an option that allows subscribers to download shows at no additional cost on their mobile device to watch without an internet connection, according to Reuters.

Raw Materials & Resources / 12.01.16

China closes plants to fight pollution

According to Reuters, China's top steelmaking city has ordered many of its industrial factories to curb production or even close for as long as four months through March in a bid to clear the skies of smog.

Great American Companies / 11.23.16

The razor battle is on

In August, Harry’s Razor Co., a three-year-old business that started out selling razors online, put up displays in nearly 1,800 Targets stores, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Great American Companies / 11.23.16

Ultra-fast train travel coming soon?

According to the Independent, U.S. company Hyperloop One has agreed to a deal with Dubai to evaluate building a new high-speed train to Abu Dhabi, which would travel 150km in just 12 minutes.

Innovation & Transformation / 11.22.16

Airbag helmets appearing safer than foam versions

Stanford University researchers say bicycle helmets that utilize airbag technology instead of conventional hard foam may offer five times more protection against brain injuries, according to Reuters.

Great American Companies / 11.22.16

Thanksgiving Weekend

Family and festivities - plus shopping and travel. The holiday season is ready to kickoff.

Great American Companies / 11.21.16

Your ‘stache means cash

Movember is the month to let facial hair grow, but is the razor industry feeling the burn? Get the hairy stats with our infographic.

Innovation & Transformation / 11.17.16

Wireless vitals

Hospital patients could have their vital signs tracked without cumbersome wires and complex monitors once a new startup’s wearable monitoring patch hits the market, according to Fortune.

Global Rebalancing / 11.15.16

A surplus of ships

A recent report found that the overcapacity that has plagued ocean shipping firms in recent years will only grow wider in the coming years, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Raw Materials & Resources / 11.14.16

Renewable India

Prime Minister Narendra Modi needs at least $100 billion more to finance India’s goals for clean energy even after his government’s policies brought in record investment in wind and solar power stations, according to Bloomberg.

Great American Companies / 11.10.16

In-store deliveries

According to the Wall Street Journal, this holiday season, one way traditional retailers hope to wrestle sales from Amazon is by making it easier for shoppers to buy items online and pick them up in stores.

Global Rebalancing / 11.08.16

U.S. elections, global shipping

The Panama Canal Authority’s chief executive, Jorge L. Quijano, is concerned about anti-trade rhetoric taking center stage in the U.S. election campaign, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Raw Materials & Resources / 11.03.16

Water warfare

Himalayan rivers have become the new flash point in the bitter India-Pakistan conflict, according to Bloomberg, providing the latest diplomatic weapon in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s push to isolate Islamabad.

Innovation & Transformation / 11.01.16

A new virtual payment platform

A blockchain platform developed by a group that includes more than 70 of the world's biggest financial institutions is making its code publicly available in what could become the industry standard for the nascent technology, according to Reuters.

Great American Companies / 10.26.16

Consumer Chills

Halloween kicks off the long-awaited holiday spending season. Check out the trends.

Raw Materials & Resources / 10.25.16

An outcry over spilled milk

According to the Wall Street Journal, farmers in the U.S. are pouring out tens of millions of gallons of excess milk, amid a massive glut that has slashed prices and has filled warehouses with cheese.

Global Rebalancing / 10.20.16

Chinese exports and currency

China’s renewed export weakness is coinciding with a clampdown on surging home prices and corporate debt, according to Bloomberg, stoking expectations policy makers will allow further yuan depreciation to buffer the economy.

Global Rebalancing / 10.18.16

An aging base

Japan's small firms, many of which are “mom-and-pop” operations, are dying out as their aging owners struggle to find successors, according to Reuters.

Great American Companies / 10.13.16

Internet to all

Facebook is in discussions with several countries for trial broadcasts of internet content from high-flying drones, according to the Wall Street Journal, underscoring the social media company’s push to provide bandwidth to poorly connected parts of the globe.

Raw Materials & Resources / 10.11.16

Shine off aluminum?

Semi-finished aluminum goods in China are being turned back into metal, according to Reuters, highlighting a glut in supply that casts doubt on the sustainability of a price rally this year.

Global Rebalancing / 10.06.16

Ethiopian Engineering

Construction of a Chinese-funded electric railway, linking Ethiopia’s capital city of Addis Ababa along its main trading route to neighboring Djibouti, has been completed, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Innovation & Transformation / 09.30.16

Calling Dr. Microsoft

There are hundreds of new cancer drugs in development and new research is published minute to minute, helping doctors treat patients with personalized combinations that target the specific building blocks of their disease. So much so, that the wealth of information can make it difficult for doctors to choose the best option every time.

Raw Materials & Resources / 09.29.16

Beefing up

Grass-fed beef, once a niche market, is now sold at ballgames, convention centers and nearly every Walmart in the U.S., according to the Wall Street Journal.

Raw Materials & Resources / 09.26.16

Gigha watts

According to Financial Times, a set of community-owned wind turbines on the Scottish island of Gigha is about to be joined by a less dynamic but potentially more important electrical innovation: a battery.

Innovation & Transformation / 09.22.16

The robots of Walmart

Walmart recently patented a system based on mini robots that can control shopping carts and complete a long list of duties once reserved for human employees, accord to Business Insider.

Great American Companies / 09.20.16

HP sells software business

Reuters reports that Hewlett-Packard Enterprise has agreed to sell its software business to Micro Focus.

Great American Companies / 09.13.16

Amazon to build three bookstores

Amazon will expand its bricks-and-mortar footprint across the U.S., according to Financial Times, undeterred by the fact many physical bookstores have been struggling for years.

Raw Materials & Resources / 09.08.16

Oil companies binge on debt

According to the Wall Street Journal, some of the world’s largest energy companies are saddled with historically high debt levels as they struggle with low crude prices, raising worries about their ability to pay dividends and find new barrels.

Global Rebalancing / 09.01.16

Unlocking Asia

The first shipment of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the lower 48 U.S. states to China arrived last month, thanks to the recently expanded Panama Canal, reports the Wall Street Journal.

Global Rebalancing / 08.30.16

An Indian engineer shortage

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “Make in India” program, designed to bring more high-grade manufacturing to the subcontinent, is facing a labor shortage, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Innovation & Transformation / 08.16.16

An Indian operating system

The second-most popular smartphone operating system in India is IndusOS, a multilingual OS developed entirely in India, according to Bloomberg.

Global Rebalancing / 09.15.15

Iron Ore Woes

Indian Railways has slashed the cost of transporting iron ore exports for the first time since March of 2012, according to The Economic Times.

Raw Materials & Resources / 08.13.15

Shale, Propane and Fleets

Sales of propane-powered vehicles are on the rise in the U.S., according to Bloomberg. The increase is especially noticeable among companies that operate fleet vehicles that would normally be powered by diesel.

Innovation & Transformation / 06.09.15

Pregnant? There’s An App For That.

Doctors and would-be parents receiving in vitro fertilization (IVF) will soon have access to a new app to monitor the growth of embryos in a lab, according the Wall Street Journal. Typically, once IVF begins, a five-day incubation process is required for fertilized eggs. The app – still nameless – would allow parents to monitor the progress of the zygote.