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.

Great American Companies / 07.19.17

Baskin-Robbins takes on the ice cream man

Global Rebalancing / 07.18.17

Trade pact for Japan and European Union

Japan and the European Union (EU) agreed to a free trade pact on July 6, 2017, to create the world's biggest open economic area and signal resistance to what they see as U.S. President Donald Trump's protectionist turn, reports Reuters.

Innovation & Transformation / 07.06.17

High-tech dashboards

Look at the instrument panel on a new car and one may find sleek digital gauges and multicolored screens. But a glimpse behind the dashboard could reveal what U.S. auto supplier Visteon Corp. found: a mess.

Global Rebalancing / 07.06.17

India’s e-commerce boom

On the Internet, nothing travels faster than a tip on how to score a bargain. And, according to Forbes, as online sales grow in India – and price-sensitive Indian consumers looking at ways to shave costs – Internet merchants are offering discounts to anyone willing to punch in a secret coupon code and sign up as a member on their sites.

Innovation & Transformation / 06.30.17

L.A. tunnel network closer to reality

Elon Musk said he is making progress on his ambitious tunneling plans for Los Angeles, according to Business Insider.

Global Rebalancing / 06.28.17

Foxconn eyes seven states for investment

The Wall Street Journal reports that Foxconn Technology Group, which assembles Apple iPhones in China, is looking at seven states in the American heartland where it would invest $10 billion or more to manufacture flat-panel screens and related equipment.

Raw Materials & Resources / 06.23.17

Coal – end of an era?

Production of coal dropped by a record amount in 2016, reports Bloomberg. China, the world’s biggest energy consumer, burned the least coal in six years and use dropped in the U.S to a level last seen in the 1970s.

Global Rebalancing / 06.21.17

A bite out of Apple?

According to the Wall Street Journal, the top player in Africa’s fast-growing smartphone market isn’t Apple or Samsung. It’s Transsion, an obscure Chinese manufacturer that won customers by offering handsets with features targeted to local markets.

Innovation & Transformation / 06.13.17

Creative energy

With the rise of green energy sources, the need for industrial-scale energy storage has become more vital. According the New York Times, technicians around the world have turned to a host of physical forces and states such as temperature, friction, gravity and inertia to keep energy locked up for later release.

Raw Materials & Resources / 06.13.17

Military metal in the flip of a switch

The U.S. could use an existing technology to produce all the specialized “high-purity” aluminum it needs for defense applications, seemingly with the flip of a switch, according to Bloomberg.

Innovation & Transformation / 06.07.17

Medicine, museums and particle accelerators

A new particle accelerator unveiled at CERN, the European physics research center, is expected to spawn portable accelerators that could help doctors treat cancer patients and experts analyze artwork, according to Reuters.

Global Rebalancing / 06.06.17

U.K. Election 2017

Polls predict the Tories will likely increase their majority in the upcoming U.K. general election, but the Conservative Party isn't taking anything for granted. The fate of Brexit negotiations is at stake.

Raw Materials & Resources / 06.05.17

India limiting sugar imports

India, the world’s biggest sugar consumer, has no plans to allow extra imports of the sweetener as stocks held in mills will suffice, reports Reuters.

Global Rebalancing / 06.01.17

An Australian Amazon?

Amazon is preparing to bring its full retail offering to Australia, according to the Wall Street Journal, signaling a major competitive threat to the country’s retailers and an important new beachhead for its global distribution network.

Global Rebalancing / 05.30.17

Mexico: NAFTA’s bigger winner?

Amid President Donald Trump’s tough-sounding talk about renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), economists and other observers have debated how potential changes could impact the U.S. economy.

Innovation & Transformation / 05.24.17

3-D printed cars

Additive manufacturing, more commonly known as 3-D printing, is the process by which heat and pressure fuse together thermoplastics or powdered materials to create a three-dimensional object, reports CNBC. Unlike traditional manufacturing processes, which remove material to reach a finished product, additive manufacturing builds an object layer by layer over time.

Great American Companies / 05.22.17

Shipt delivers

Shipt, a grocery delivery startup, is expanding its partnership with Costco and plans to double its overall market size this year, according to CNBC.

Great American Companies / 05.18.17

WeWork wants to grow

WeWork Cos., the startup that caters to entrepreneurs and small companies looking for communal office space and short-term commitments, is launching a new business that will put it into direct competition with the established giants in the commercial real-estate services industry, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Raw Materials & Resources / 05.16.17

Grease is the new gold

Increase in theft of used vegetable oil has increased due to demand for biofuel production, the largest use for old grease.

Global Rebalancing / 05.04.17

French Election 2017

The results of the French election, held May 7, may lead to major economic changes for France and the European Union. Our infographic illustrates the issues, the candidates and what's at stake.

Innovation & Transformation / 05.03.17

Water ball-ttles

Small transparent spheres filled with natural or flavored water could help provide a solution to London's plastic waste problem, reports Reuters.

Global Rebalancing / 05.01.17

Mexico’s technologically advanced shipping terminal

Latin America’s most technologically advanced shipping terminal opened in April at Lázaro Cárdenas with a ceremony attended by heads of state and shipping industry royalty, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Great American Companies / 04.22.17

Data centers and the cloud

This month Amazon.com announced plans to plunk down a massive collection of data centers in Stockholm, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Global Rebalancing / 04.22.17

From London to China

The first freight train to run from Britain to China departed this month, reports Reuters, carrying goods like vitamins, baby products and pharmaceuticals as Britain seeks to burnish its global trading credentials for when it leaves the European Union.

Innovation & Transformation / 04.12.17

Smarter artificial intelligence?

Hedge funds have been trying to teach computers to think like traders for years. Now, an artificial intelligence technology called “deep learning” that loosely mimics the neurons in human brains is showing promise, according to Bloomberg.

Great American Companies / 04.10.17

Dow, DuPont in mega merger

Dow Chemical and DuPont won the blessing of the European Union for their $130 billion merger last month by agreeing to sell substantial assets, including key research and development activities, reports Reuters.

Raw Materials & Resources / 04.06.17

Brazilian beef bummer

Brazil’s investigation into tainted food has hit importers, shippers, food processors and customers around the world, reports Bloomberg.

Innovation & Transformation / 04.04.17

Energy goes Gaga

According to The Australian newspaper, an ASX-listed Internet of Things firm backed by Lady Gaga has launched a new device for monitoring utility consumption: the Buddy Ohm.

Global Rebalancing / 03.29.17

Japan goes from London to Amsterdam

As Frankfurt, Paris and Dublin vie for financial jobs that may move from London after Brexit, Bloomberg reports that two of Japan’s biggest banks have been quietly building their presence elsewhere: Amsterdam.

Raw Materials & Resources / 03.27.17

Australian power problems

Australia threatened to impose restrictions on natural-gas exports as it extracted a commitment from global energy companies to supply enough gas to meet growing local demand and prevent a domestic shortage, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Innovation & Transformation / 03.22.17

Robotic hydroponics

Bloomberg reports that the Flux IoT Eddy, a robot measuring less than a foot tall, built with military-grade sensors and armed with image-processing technology, may be the new frontier for farming.

Raw Materials & Resources / 03.20.17

Measuring GDP

Great American Companies / 03.20.17

Boeing increases Max model production

Boeing Co. is ready for the next production increases in 737 jetliners as it prepares to deliver the first of the revamped Max models in the summer, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Global Rebalancing / 03.15.17

Tennessee and South Korea

South Korean conglomerate LG Electronics Inc. is planning to build a new washing machine factory in Tennessee, its first major U.S. plant, and hire at least 600 workers by the end of 2019, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Raw Materials & Resources / 03.13.17

Gold (production) loses its gleam

The world’s gold miners will be running on the spot for years to come as a surge in gold prices prompts them to secure new production from less profitable projects, according to Bloomberg.

Innovation & Transformation / 03.08.17

Eagle eyes

As anyone who has bought a smartphone in the last few years can tell you, cameras are getting smaller and smaller. Now, according PBS Newshour, miniature lenses that mimic the eyes of predatory birds could shrink a camera’s size to less than 1/100th of an inch — and could revolutionize a host of compact technologies.

Global Rebalancing / 03.06.17

Refugees – training for talent

In the break room at the Dakota Provisions LLC turkey plant in Huron, S.D., employees are just as likely to hear safety instructions in Thai or Burmese as in English, reports the Wall Street Journal. Well over half of the 1,050 employees are Karen, ethnic minorities from Myanmar who have fled their native country.

Great American Companies / 03.01.17

Electric cars bolt forward

The Chevrolet Bolt EV, which is now hitting the market, could be the first of a new wave of game-changing electric vehicles, according to NPR.

Global Rebalancing / 02.27.17

U.S. ports see import gain

Imports surged at the nation’s ports in January, buoyed by a postelection swell in consumer confidence, retailer restocking after the holidays and a strong dollar that made imported goods cheaper, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Global Rebalancing / 02.21.17

Ultra low-cost airlines no longer interested in crossing the pond

For at least a decade, Ryanair Holdings Plc CEO Michael O’Leary dreamed about coming to America, bringing the Irish carrier’s insanely low fares to the other side of the pond, reports Bloomberg. A leader among ultra low-cost airlines, Ryanair had global ambitions.

Raw Materials & Resources / 02.15.17

China forecasts corn imports at decade low

According to Reuters, China’s recent forecast of a drop in corn imports to their lowest in at least a decade may end a years-long bonanza for global merchants and producers as maize prices in the world’s biggest grains market have dropped below global prices.

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 / 01.17.17

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.

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 / 11.01.16

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.

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.

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.

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.