Is Facebook Losing Friends?

What is it?The number of teenagers aged 15 to 19 who were newly infected with HIV per hour in 2017, according to United Nations children’s fund UNICEF

Why it’s important? This underlines HIV crisis among the teenagers, especially girls. Of the 30, infections, 20 were in girls. UNICEF attributed it to the lack of access to information, services and of power to say no in many countries, making girls most vulnerable.

Tell me more: UNICEF in its report said, 130,000 children under the age of 19 died last year, and 430,000 children were newly infected.


$13.2 billion


What is it?Facebook’s revenue in the second quarter of 2018, up 42% from last year.

Why is it important?That didn’t stop the market from battering down the stock by nearly 20%, shaving off over $120 billion in its market capitalisation.  Analysts were expecting the technology giant to perform better, and the company executives warned about lower revenues, and smaller margins. This comes at a time when there is an increasing concern over privacy, and regulators are responding by tightening privacy norms.

Tell me more: Mark Zuckerberg’s personal fortune slid by $16.8 billion.




What is it? Cricketer turned politician Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) lead in the general elections with 30% of the total votes counted.

Why is it important? PTI contested in 272 seats. The assembly has 342 seats, and 172 are needed for a majority. While it’s not clear if PTI will get a majority on its own, or whether it will have to seek coalition partners, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) has rejected the results. It said the election was rigged in favour of PTI. PML-N was ahead in 66 constituencies, and the other big political party, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), was ahead in 39. It will be the second civilian transfer of power in the country’s history.

Tell me more: The elections took place in the shadow of killing of 31 people by a suicide bomber near a polling station in Quetta, capital of Balochistan, one of the five provinces in Pakistan.


$3.8 billion


What is it?The amount government hopes to recover from Reliance Industries, Shell and (Oil and Natural Gas Corp)ONGC over its share from the Panna-Mukta and Tapti fields.

Why is it important? The government has now moved Delhi High Court to enforce the recovery. This follows a ruling by English Commercial Court in May 2018 regarding the government’s share in the fields.

Tell me more: The liability is to be split among the three entities per their stake. ONGC has 40%, RIL and Shell 30% each.




What is it?The tariff that United States president Donald Trump had threatened to impose on auto imports into the US.

Why is it important? Even as United States and European Union had agreed to work on lowering trade barriers, after a meeting with Donald Trump and European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker, there was no mention of tariffs on auto imports. The tariffs will have an impact European car makers such as BMW and Volkswagen.

Tell me more: Among other things, Europe has agreed to lower trade barriers to American soybeans. Earlier Trump announced a $12 billion emergency aid for US farmers.

Read More


Samsung Makes In India

8.64 million metric tonnes

What is it? The quantity of coal imported by Indian power plants in two months ending May 2018.

Why is it important? This is down from 10.13 million during the year ago period, an indication that there could be a decline in power generation. The lower imports is thanks to higher coal prices (up 25% from year ago) and a weaker rupee.

Tell me more: Power plants designed to use imported coal have been running on lower capacity. Power plants in general are facing a shortage in coal supply, with coal stock of 15.3 MT in June, against the usual 35.5 MT.

120 million

What is it? The number of mobile phones Samsung can manufacture at its Noida factory after expansion.

Why is it important?This would make it the largest mobile manufacturing factory in the world, according to the South Korean mobile maker. It would invest  $716.57 million over the next three years to expand its plant capacity. It is expected to add 1000 jobs, and would help the government’s Make in India campaign.  The plant was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and South Korean President Moon Jae-In on Monday.

Tell me more:Last week, Samsung said its earnings in the second quarter grew at the slowest pace in more than a year. Analysts attributed it to the slump in sales of its smartphones.


What is it? The number of educational institutions that have been granted ‘eminent’ status by the government of India, enabling them to get Rs 1000 crore of government funding over the next five years. 
Why is it important?  The Human Resource Development ministry faced criticism for including Reliance Foundation’s Jio Institute, which is yet to be set up, in the list. The other five are well established. HRD ministry later said it was included under the under Greenfield category for new or proposed institutions. 

Tell me more:The other five educational institutions are: Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, the Indian Institutes of Technology at Mumbai and Delhi, Manipal Academy of Higher Education and BITS, Pilani.

What is it? The number of products for which China has agreed to cut import tariffs, in an agreement with India. India, in turn, has agreed to cut tariffs for 3142 products.

Why is it important? The Indo-China agreement comes at a time when China is fighting a trade war with US, raising concerns about globalisation, and economic growth. From cars to whiskey, a range of products are likely to feel the impact.

Tell me more:In China, the reduction in tariffs for Indian medicines, especially anti-cancer drugs, which costs a tenth of its alternatives, has caught attention. A recent Chinese film on cancer, Dying to Survive, highlighted the high costs and the need for Indian drugs.

52 crore

What is it? Tax amount charged on Indian Institute of Management for the years 2009-10 to 2014-15, on the fees it collected for four postgraduate programmes.

Why is it important?The premier B-school has appealed to Human Resources Development ministry for help. It’s likely to emerge as yet another high profile tax disputes. The government has often been accused of ‘tax terrorism’ arising from “high unrealistic target setting, leading to high-pitched assessments, and the long time taken to settle appeals.”

Tell me more:Revenue department has slapped charges considering the institute to be a ‘commercial coaching centre.’ The dispute has been going on for some years, with IIM-A arguing that it is liable to pay service taxes for its consulting revenues, and not for educational programmes such as PGP.

Read More