Quartz Daily Brief—Americas edition—a whistleblower in Hong Kong, Apple’s big event, Japan bounces back, Hollande’s dream

Quartz

What to watch for today

What will happen to Edward Snowden? The newly revealed NSA contractor/whistleblower is holing up in Hong Kong. It’s a risky choice because China’s special administrative region has an extradition treaty with the US, but the 28-year-old American may be ok if Beijing decides to offer him protection.

Her Majesty’s spies. William Hague will make a statement to Parliament about reports that British intelligence services accessed NSA’s PRISM program to spy on British citizens. If government critics have their way, the foreign secretary will be forced to answer some questions as well.

What will Apple cook up? Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference kicks off in San Francisco. The company is expected to unveil iOS 7, a redesigned version of its mobile operating system, and perhaps a new music streaming service, dubbed “iRadio” by Apple watchers.

Google goes map shopping in Israel. The tech giant is on the cusp of a $1 billion-plus deal to buy the socially-driven mapping service Waze. It would be Google’s fourth-largest purchase, and could involve the integration of Waze’s technology into Google Maps.

The hangover menu. McDonalds releases its May sales report. Falling sales over the last couple of months forced the company to start courting late-night diners with an expanded breakfast menu.

Over the weekend

China’s growth engines sputtered… Industrial production rose 9.2% year-over-year in May, down marginally from the 9.3% increase in April, and the slowest rate since last September. Exports grew just 1% versus 14.7% in April, after a crackdown on fake trade invoices. That showed China’s GDP growth is even worse than initially thought—but at least inflation wasn’t too high.

…Japan’s revved up… Revised figures for first-quarter growth show that Japan grew 4.1% from a year earlier, up from the previously reported 3.5%, sending the Nikkei up nearly 5%.

…And India’s rupee fell to a record low. At 57.74 rupees to the dollar, down 7% since May, India’s currency is the worst-performing currency in Asia.

Cyber-espionage deal elusive. The US and China are no closer to an agreement on cybersecurity after two days of informal talks between presidents Barack Obama and Xi Jinping. The “shirt-sleeves” summit did deliver a few results: The two countries pledged to work together to fight climate change and rein in North Korea.

Hollande in la-la land? Much of Europe is suffering from recession and high unemployment, but French President François Hollande has declared that the “crisis in Europe is over.”   

“We will choke you.” Turkey’s prime minister, Tayyip Erdogan, threatened stock market speculators and rallied his supporters with a series of weekend speeches. The stock market opened an hour late this morning due to technical snags, and promptly slid 2.4%.

Quartz obsession interlude

Tim Fernholz on why fixing the world’s busiest border crossing could save the US billions. ”When the US economy is stronger than Mexico’s, unauthorized immigration goes up as more immigrants seek work across the border.  A logical way to keep Mexicans from illegally crossing the border for American jobs, then, would be to boost job creation in Mexico. And a good way to do that is to speed up cross-border trade between Mexico and the US.” Read more here.

Matters of debate

IT geeks like Edward Snowden are your biggest security threat. They can do more than you think.

Gazprom’s demise could topple Putin. The boss-behind-the-scenes can’t let go.

Spain and Italy are struggling. But the CEOs have it good.

Why do most US-based internet giants fail in China? It’s not that complicated.

Anonymous feedback is a powerful management tool. Use it wisely.

Surprising discoveries

Troubled by NSA surveillance? Scientists invent an invisibility cloak for data.

Guess who banned Google Glass from its shareholder meetingGoogle!

Still living with your parents? You are in good company.

The price of a Chinese bride: up to $24,000. And don’t forget the jewellery, livestock and “luck cakes.”

The immortality business. Death may soon be temporary.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, anonymous suggestions and invisibility cloak prototypes to hi@qz.com. You can follow us on Twitter here for updates during the day.

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