The daily business briefing: July 9, 2018

Harold Maass
Theresa May speaks after a UN summit
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Brexit minister resigns, fueling turmoil in British government

The U.K.'s Brexit secretary, David Davis, resigned on Sunday, dealing a blow to Prime Minister Theresa May's government. Davis said he was not willing to be "a reluctant conscript" in May's plan for pulling Britain out of the European Union. The news came just two days after May held a crisis meeting with her ministers in an attempt to settle deep divisions among her ministers. Davis' departure reportedly triggered at least one more resignation by a junior minister in the same department. Davis said May's plan to maintain a "common rule book" with the EU that essentially mirrors the trading bloc's regulations would give "control of large swathes of our economy to the EU and is certainly not returning control of our laws." [Reuters]


Ant-Man and the Wasp becomes 20th straight Marvel film to debut at No. 1

Ant-Man and the Wasp brought in an estimated $76 million to lead the box office on its opening weekend. It was Marvel Studios' 20th straight No. 1 opening, and a big improvement on the 2015 debut of Ant Man, which made $57.2 million on its debut weekend. Ant-Man and the Wasp was the Disney superhero studio's third and final film of 2018, following the blockbusters Black Panther and Avengers: Infinity War, which opened in February and April, respectively. Both of those films brought in nearly $700 million domestically. "Ant-Man and the Wasp proves that at this point Marvel can seemingly do no wrong," said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at comScore. [CNN]


U.S. stock index futures rise following upbeat jobs report

U.S. stock futures gained early Monday, looking to build on Friday gains that followed a stronger-than-expected jobs report. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were up by 0.4 percent, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100 futures rose by 0.3 percent. On Friday the Dow and the S&P 500 rose by 0.4 percent and 0.8 percent, respectively, while the Nasdaq Composite jumped by 1.3 percent. June manufacturing and construction reports due Monday could provide fresh insights on the state of the economy. Asian stocks closed up on Monday, with China's Shanghai Composite rising by 2.5 percent. [MarketWatch]


China's Cosco Shipping gets U.S. security clearance for rival's takeover

China's state-run Cosco Shipping Holdings Co.'s takeover of rival Orient Overseas International Ltd. got approval from a U.S. national-security review body, clearing a significant hurdle for the $6.3 billion deal. Cosco said the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. signed off on the takeover after Cosco agreed to put a major Long Beach, California, container terminal into a U.S.-run trust, and sell it to avoid any concerns over Chinese ownership of the facility. Cosco's acquisition of Orient Overseas, a Hong Kong-based container shipping operator, will make it the third largest container shipping operator in the world. [Bloomberg, The Wall Street Journal]


Drake becomes first artist to get 1 billion streams in a week

Drake's fifth album, Scorpion, became the first to break the 1-billion-stream mark globally in its first week, the singer's label, Republic Records, said Sunday. Drake's last project, More Life, held the previous record for global streams with about 600 million in its first week. Scorpion also smashed the domestic record with 746 million streams in its first week, soaring past the 431 million streams of Post Malone's beerbongs & bentleys earlier this year. Scorpion also set single-day records on Spotify, Apple Music, and Amazon Music with its 300 million streams in its first 24 hours. The album sold 732,000 copies in the U.S. over the week, giving it the biggest music debut of the year. [The Verge]