Business briefing

The daily business briefing: April 11, 2022

Elon Musk decides not to join Twitter board in reversal, China shares drop as coronavirus lockdowns disrupt supply chain, and more

1

Musk decides not to join Twitter board

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has decided not to join Twitter's board, Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal tweeted Sunday. A week ago, the social media company had said in a regulatory filing that the Tesla and SpaceX CEO, who recently bought a 9 percent stake in Twitter, would join the board and had agreed not to acquire more than 14.9 percent of Twitter's stock. Musk, who has suggested that Twitter doesn't allow enough free speech, had vowed to help "make significant improvements to Twitter." Agrawal said Sunday the reversal was "for the best" but warned of "distractions ahead," adding that Musk is "our biggest shareholder and we will remain open to his input." Twitter shares fell 8 percent in pre-market trading.

2

China shares drop amid shutdowns

The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland Chinese stocks dropped nearly 4 percent on Monday as coronavirus lockdowns in Shanghai and other parts of China caused severe supply-chain disruptions. The broader Hang Seng average closed down 3 percent; the Hang Seng Tech index tumbled more than 5 percent. Electric carmaker Nio closed down by 8 percent after it said it would have to postpone deliveries after suppliers in Shanghai and other areas had halted production "one after the other." Shanghai's lockdowns amid a coronavirus surge have halted economic activity in China's most populous city and biggest onshore financial hub since April 1.

3

Poll: Most Americans blame Putin for gas prices

More Americans blame Russian President Vladimir Putin than President Biden for high gasoline prices, according to an ABC News/Ipsos poll released Sunday. Seventy-one percent of respondents said Putin, whose invasion of Ukraine disrupted oil markets, was responsible for a "great deal" or a "good amount" of the price increases. Sixty-eight percent said oil companies were largely to blame; 51 percent said the same about Biden, who has called the surge "Putin's price hike." Fifty-two percent said Democratic policies shared much of the blame, while 33 percent and 24 percent faulted Republican policies and former President Donald Trump, respectively. Oil executives told Congress last week that the coronavirus pandemic also was a factor, but not price gouging.

4

Stock futures fall ahead of inflation data

U.S. stock futures fell early Monday as Wall Street continued to struggle after a losing week. Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 were down 0.1 percent and 0.3 percent, respectively, at 6:30 a.m. ET, while Nasdaq futures were down nearly 0.8 percent. U.S. Treasury yields, which move inversely to prices, continued to rise after the benchmark 10-year yield hit a three-year high on Friday. The S&P 500 and the Dow fell 1.3 percent and 0.3 percent, respectively, last week. Investors will have fresh inflation data to digest this week, with the March consumer price index coming out Tuesday and the producer price index following on Wednesday.

5

'Sonic the Hedgehog 2' leads box office

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 led the weekend box office, hauling in a strong $71 million domestically in its opening weekend. The Sonic sequel broke the record for the biggest debut for a video-game movie, surpassing the $58 million record set by the first Sonic film's three-day debut, which came before the coronavirus pandemic kept audiences away from movie theaters. The sequel's opening was the second-biggest domestic opening weekend of 2022, after The Batman. It was the latest in a series of strong showings for Paramount Pictures films, following Scream, Jackass Forever, and The Lost City. The new Universal thriller Ambulance didn't fare as well, bringing in just $8 million.

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