Baltic Dry Index records the biggest weekly decline in over three months; Biden and McCarthy to meet on Monday to resume debt limit negotiations | Cross-border e-commerce daily news

Baltic Dry Index drops sharply; Biden and McCarthy to discuss debt limit on Monday

【Baltic Dry Index sees biggest weekly drop in over three months】 The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) fell for the seventh consecutive trading day as of last Friday, hitting the biggest weekly drop in over three months due to the decline in prices of large vessels. The BDI fell by 18 points, or 1.28%, to 1384 points, the lowest since April 19. The index fell 11.2% last week, the biggest weekly drop since the week ending January 27. The Capesize index fell by 37 points, or 1.7%, to its lowest level in over three weeks at 2105 points. The index fell 14.3% last week, the first weekly drop in five weeks. The Capesize daily earnings dropped by $308 to $17459. The Panamax index fell by 13 points, or 1.1%, to 1222 points. The index fell 12.8% last week, the biggest weekly drop since the week ending January 13. The Panamax daily earnings dropped by $111 to $11001. The Supramax index fell by 5 points to 612 points. The Handysize index fell by 8 points to 1077 points.

【Biden and McCarthy to meet on Monday to restart debt limit talks】 As the deadline for the US debt default approaches, US President Biden and House Speaker McCarthy will meet on Monday (May 22) to discuss the debt limit, with negotiators set to resume talks in Washington before then. According to a White House statement, negotiators from both sides plan to resume talks at 6pm local time on Sunday (6am Beijing time on Monday). McCarthy emphasized that no agreement has been reached yet, but after discussing potential solutions to bridge the gap with Biden, he is more hopeful that an agreement can be reached. In addition, two sources revealed that Republicans have reduced their demand for spending cuts from 10 years to six years, while the White House hopes for a deadline of two years.


North America

【Fed Chairman Powell hints at possible pause in rate hikes in June】 Fed Chairman Powell said that the pressure facing the banking system may mean that the central bank does not need to raise rates to the same high level as it would have without this situation in order to slow down the economy.

Powell talked about the so-called separation principle on Friday, where central bank officials use emergency lending tools to address the chaotic situation in financial and credit markets, so that their monetary policy tools – mainly interest rates – can continue to be used specifically to curb high inflation.

After two medium-sized banks collapsed, the Fed quickly implemented extensive loan support to ease pressure on the banking industry. The Fed raised rates at its March meeting and again in May after the third bank collapsed to combat high inflation.

【SpaceX to send first batch of Saudi astronauts to the International Space Station】 Weather and rocket conditions permitting, SpaceX’s next private space flight mission to the International Space Station (Ax-2) will launch today. The passengers on this mission include the first batch of Saudi astronauts in decades and a businessman from Tennessee, USA. This is the second charter flight organized by Axiom Space, based in Houston. The company has not disclosed the latest price of tickets, but previously announced a price of $55 million per seat. SpaceX plans to launch at Kennedy Space Center at around 5:40 a.m. Beijing time.

【Tesla offers about $1,300 discount for some US Model 3s】 Tesla’s US website shows that the company is offering about a $1,300 discount for some Model 3 models in the US inventory. Industry analysts say that Tesla has cut prices significantly in many regions this year, and that the company is adopting the strategy of traditional automakers to offer incentives to clear its inventory in the face of economic headwinds and increased competition.

【Meta reportedly in talks with Magic Leap over AR deal】 On May 20th, it was reported that Meta is exploring ways in which Magic Leap can provide intellectual property licenses and contract manufacturing in North America to help it build mainstream AR products. Magic Leap produces custom components including high-tech lenses and related software which are key technologies required for building virtual worlds. However, insiders have stated that this collaboration is not expected to produce a specific Meta-Magic Leap headset.

【Instagram to launch product competing with Twitter this summer】 Instagram, owned by Meta, plans to launch a text-based app to compete with Twitter. According to insiders, the company is currently testing the project with celebrities and influential people. One insider revealed that selected creators have been able to use the software secretly for several months. Lia Haberman, a well-known digital media marketing expert and business strategist and adjunct professor at the University of California, Los Angeles, said that the app will be independent of Instagram but will allow people to connect accounts, and it could be launched as early as June.

【Apple restricts employees from using ChatGPT】 On May 19th, it was reported that Apple has restricted the use of ChatGPT and other external AI tools as it develops its own AI technology. Apple is concerned that employees using such programs may leak confidential data. The document also stated that Apple has told its employees not to use Copilot, a product of Microsoft’s GitHub. Copilot can automatically write software code.

【Disney to close immersive Star Wars-themed hotel】 Disney bet big that super fans would pay thousands of dollars for a two-night ultimate Star Wars experience, but it didn’t go as planned. The Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser, a themed hotel offering immersive role-playing experiences, will close in September, less than two years after its grand opening.

The accommodation prices of this intergalactic cruiser are not cheap. A family of four will spend at least $6,000, and the specific amount depends on the cabin type and accommodation date. Tourism brokers and industry insiders said that high prices have led to a gradual decline in demand for the hotel after its opening.

【Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman will step down within a year】 James Gorman said he will step down as CEO of Morgan Stanley within the next year, ending his 13-year tenure. During this period, he thoroughly reformed the Wall Street bank, surpassing some competitors such as Goldman Sachs in some areas.

【Canadian wildfires out of control, oil-producing areas in jeopardy】 Wildfires in Alberta, western Canada, have been raging for nearly a month, with the impact continuing. As Canada is the world’s fourth-largest oil-producing country, about 80% of its oil comes from Alberta. At present, several companies in this important oil-producing area have been forced to suspend production, and the supply of oil and gas has also been interrupted. On the other hand, the smoke from wildfires has also led to poor air quality in western Canada, and tens of thousands of residents have been evacuated.


EU Region

【European company layoffs on the rise】 One of the largest telecommunications companies in the UK, British Telecom, said that the layoff rate will reach 42%, or about 55,000 people, by the end of the fiscal year 2030. In recent months, companies across Europe have been laying off employees.

A few days before British Telecom announced this layoff plan, its peer, the UK-based Vodafone Air Communications Company, announced that it would cut about 11,000 jobs in the next three years.

【Controversial Carbon Border Tax to be Levied by the EU with Huge Global Impact】 On April 18th, the European Parliament passed a proposal aimed at addressing climate change and reducing carbon emissions. It is the core part of the “Green Deal” proposed by the EU to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. The proposal’s measure is the so-called carbon border tax, formally known as the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM). The EU’s move has a huge global impact, both innovating international trade rules and using trade policy tools to promote the adjustment of global climate policies. Understanding the importance of the EU’s carbon border tax for the recognition and implementation of China’s “carbon neutrality” is directly significant.

【Nine EU Countries Agree to Establish Mediterranean Green Energy Hub】 According to reports, energy ministers from nine EU member states in the Mediterranean region held a meeting in Valletta, the capital of Malta, on May 18th, agreeing to establish a Mediterranean green energy hub to accelerate the EU’s pace towards decarbonization and energy independence.

【Italian Insurance Company Buys Starlink Terminals to Deal with Flooding】 Italian insurance company Unipol announced today that it has purchased Starlink terminals from Musk’s SpaceX to help with rescue and recovery efforts in the country’s disaster-stricken areas. Unipol said that the Starlink terminals, which provide satellite network services, will greatly help rescue workers carry out their work. It also added that SpaceX will adjust some of its satellites to focus on disaster-stricken areas.

【Wildfire in Spain’s Cáceres Province Destroys Over 8,500 Hectares of Land】 On the morning of May 20th, local time, the wildfire in the forests of Cáceres province, Spain, was still out of control. According to local government statistics, as of the morning of the 20th, the wildfire has destroyed over 8,500 hectares of land since it broke out on the 17th, and about 700 residents from several towns have been evacuated. Currently, the local fire department is still trying to control the spread of the fire, and fire-fighting teams from neighboring provinces and neighboring country Portugal have also joined the firefighting efforts.

Spanish judges and prosecutors reach agreement with government to improve salaries Negotiations between Spanish judges and prosecutors and the government ended on May 18th. An agreement was reached to improve the salaries of these groups and the strike scheduled for May 22nd was cancelled. Both sides are expected to sign the agreement on the 23rd. The planned strike by the Spanish Judges and Prosecutors Association, originally scheduled to begin on the 16th, was suspended due to the resumption of negotiations between the relevant association and the government. It was later postponed to the 22nd.


Other regions

Continuing heat wave affects agriculture production in several parts of India Since the start of summer, many parts of India have set records of over 45 degrees Celsius. In recent days, temperatures in Uttar Pradesh have reached as high as 44 degrees Celsius, while temperatures in Punjab, Haryana and other places have risen to around 42 degrees Celsius. The summer heat has swept across many parts of India, including the capital New Delhi. As a major agriculture country, India’s agricultural production has been affected by the high temperature weather, and farmers’ incomes have been affected.

SHEIN is set to return to the Indian market this month through cooperation with Reliance Retail, one of India’s largest retail companies On May 19th, according to exclusive reports from Houlai Xiaoxiaoban, an informed source revealed that SHEIN will return to the Indian market this month through cooperation with Reliance Retail, one of India’s largest retail companies, in order to tap into India’s growing consumer market. Neither SHEIN nor Reliance Retail responded to requests for comment on the news.

China Postal Airlines’ “Zhengzhou-Seoul” cargo route resumes operation On May 19th, a Boeing 737-800F all-cargo aircraft from China Postal Airlines took off from Zhengzhou Airport at 10:40 am on May 18th, marking the resumption of China Postal Airlines’ cargo route from Zhengzhou to Seoul.

The Zhengzhou to Seoul cargo air route is a key air cargo route developed by the Henan Airport Group. The route is jointly operated by China Postal Airlines, Zhongyuan Longhao Airlines, UPS Airlines, Incheon Airlines, and Korean Air, with a total of 15 flights per week.

【From January to April, China-Europe freight trains have operated a total of 5,611 trains, a year-on-year increase of 17%】 According to China Railway Group, the transportation capacity and efficiency of China-Europe freight trains have continued to increase and the quality of operation has been further improved in the first four months of this year. From January to April this year, China-Europe freight trains have operated a total of 5,611 trains, transporting 609,000 TEUs, a year-on-year increase of 17% and 32% respectively, with a heavy container rate of 100%. Among them, 1,459 trains were operated in April, transporting 160,000 TEUs, a year-on-year increase of 25% and 45% respectively.

【Shanghai Shipping Exchange: The export container transportation market remains stable, with different routes rising and falling】 On May 20, the Shanghai Shipping Exchange released a weekly report on the Chinese export container transportation market. Last week, the Chinese export container transportation market remained stable with stable transportation demand and basic supply-demand balance. Due to differences in their own supply and demand fundamentals, different routes had different price movements, and the comprehensive index fell slightly. On May 19, the Shanghai Shipping Exchange released the Shanghai export container comprehensive freight index, which fell by 1.1% compared to the previous period, reaching 972.45 points.

【Shanghai Shipping Exchange: The comprehensive index of coastal bulk cargo fell slightly, and the improvement of terminal demand was slow】 On May 20, the Shanghai Shipping Exchange released a weekly report on the coastal (bulk cargo) transportation market. Last week, affected by the continued weakening of the commodity market, the slow improvement of terminal demand, and the situation of too many ships and too little cargo, the comprehensive index of coastal bulk cargo fell slightly. On May 19, the comprehensive freight index of China’s coastal (bulk cargo) transportation was 986.74 points, down 1.0% from the previous period.

[Amazon: Requires Sellers to Complete Information Review under New Law] On May 20th, it was reported that many sellers on Amazon’s US site have recently received emails regarding the “Consumer Notification Act.”

Amazon’s information verification this time is based on the US federal law, “Consumer Notification Act,” which will take effect on June 27th, 2023 Beijing Time. According to the law, third-party sellers on Amazon’s US marketplace who sell and meet the requirements of the law must provide relevant company information, and Amazon has an obligation to collect, verify, and disclose relevant information.

Amazon is taking the necessary steps to verify the relevant seller information that meets the requirements of the law. In this process, Amazon will take strict measures to protect the data security of sellers.

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