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September 11, 2021 View Online | Sign Up

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Good morning. 20 years after September 11, 2001, we're still learning about the different ways people are processing and memorializing the tragedy. 

Yesterday, we read that in the two decades since the attacks more than 1,800 pieces of steel from the World Trade Center wreckage have been sent to memorial sites in all 50 states and more than a dozen places internationally, even as far as the South Island of New Zealand. It's a reminder that while the 9/11 attacks may have happened in a pocket of the US, they touched the entire world.

Jamie Wilde, Matty Merritt, Neal Freyman

MARKETS

Nasdaq

15,115.49

S&P

4,458.58

Dow

34,607.72

Bitcoin

$45,710.22

10-Year

1.335%

Apple

$148.97

*Stock data as of market close, cryptocurrency data as of 4:00pm ET. Here's what these numbers mean.

  • Markets: At least the Dow and S&P were consistent this week, closing lower for all five trading days. Apple was a major drag...we'll explain why in just a sec.
  • Covid: A new CDC report found that unvaccinated people were roughly 11x more likely to die of Covid-19 than vaccinated people, and 10x more likely to be hospitalized.

ANTITRUST

Epic Beats Apple but Doesn't Land the KO

Epic VS Apple as a videogame

Francis Scialabba

Step aside Gilgamesh, the epic tale of Apple v. Epic Games just got its conclusion and we have the deets.

Yesterday, a federal judge ruled (mostly) in favor of Epic in its vendetta against App Store fees. The court of investor opinion quickly followed suit, with shares in gaming stocks like Roblox and Zynga climbing after the announcement.

The backstory: Last summer, Epic CEO Tim Sweeney martyred his top-earning game Fortnite by encouraging users to make in-game purchases (hamburger helmets, demogorgon skins) outside of Apple's payment systems in protest of the steep commission Apple charges developers in its App Store.

The game was promptly booted from the App Store, and Epic launched its revolution with a 1984-style video and a lawsuit against Apple, which culminated in a high-profile trial featuring testimony from Apple CEO Tim Cook.

Tim S. landed a big win against Tim C. The judge ruled that Apple must allow developers to send users outside the App Store to make payments—the biggest change to the platform since it was created in 2008. The court also ruled that Epic's ends didn't justify its means, requiring the company to pay Apple $4+ million in damages.

But $4 million is a roll of quarters next to the multibillion-dollar stack of App Store commissions Apple stands to lose. The App Store in its current state makes Apple more than $20 billion per year with at least a 75% profit margin, analysts say.

Here's why Apple's being pretty Mr. Brightside about it

A few billion in revenue per year is a small price to pay for the court ruling Apple's App Store is not a monopoly. As Apple wrote in a statement, "Today the court has affirmed what we've known all along: the App Store is not in violation of antitrust law."

Looking ahead...Apple could appeal this ruling, and Sweeney still has a Sisyphean effort ahead of him to free Fortnite from third-party fees; Epic's filed complaints against Apple in several other countries and has an upcoming trial against Google. – JW

        

ENVIRONMENT

Harvard Passes on the Gas

A Harvard University building

Harvard University

In a W for environmental activists, the richest university in the country said yesterday that it will no longer directly invest in fossil fuels. Harvard Management Company, the group that manages investments for the school's massive $41.9 billion endowment, also announced that it won't renew any of the indirect fossil fuel industry investments which make up less than 2% of the endowment.

Why? President Lawrence Bacow said that there is a need to "decarbonize the economy," and that it's the school's responsibility to make investment decisions that align with its mission.

He may not have come to that conclusion had it not been for widespread campus protests and legal complaints. Last year, a group of alumni fighting the school's fossil fuel investments gained three seats on Harvard's Board of Overseers and made their thoughts extremely clear.

Zoom out: Sure, Harvard definitely wanted to one-up Yale's announcement this spring about shrinking its own list of fossil fuel-related investments. And given the influence of both of those institutions, their decisions could raise the pressure on universities across the country to re-evaluate their portfolios. – MM

        

EDUCATION

College Students Are Here for a Good Time

After a year and a half of mostly virtual classes, many colleges around the country have welcomed back students for an in-person fall semester. Still, the Delta variant, vaccination mandates, and masks have created more tension than a COMM 101 group project.

In a Morning Brew + Generation Lab poll, we asked 524 college students across the US about their experiences back on campus, and we found out that students' biggest concern for the fall was not getting the full social experience of college (42%), followed by not getting the full academic value (29%), then contracting Covid-19 (22%).

Chart illustrating college students' biggest concern for the fall was not getting the full social experience of college (42%), followed by not getting the full academic value (29%), and then contracting Covid-19 (22%).

Francis Scialabba

See the rest of the findings here.

        

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GRAB BAG

Key Performance Indicators

Stat: One-third of US consumers who used buy now, pay later services have fallen behind on at least one of their payments, according to a study from Qualtrics. And 72% of those respondents said their credit score fell.

Quote: "It's an emotionally manipulative, overlong dirge composed of cloying songs, lackluster vocal performances, and even worse writing."

It's probably safe to say that movie critic Robert Daniels did not enjoy the film version of the musical Dear Evan Hansen.

Watch: The tale of Tiffany. (CGP Grey on YouTube)

        

SEPTEMBER 11

9/11 Reads, Watches, and Listens

New York City skyline with Brooklyn Bridge in the foreground and the twi...

Jeff Overs/Getty Images

There's a lot of incredible content about September 11. Here are some pieces that caught our eye this week in case you want to dive in. 

A podcast episode about United Flight 93, which crashed outside of Shanksville, PA. (NPR)

Prominent Muslim Americans reflect on the past 20 years. (The Guardian)

September 11-themed covers over the years. (New Yorker)

The falling man. (Esquire)

Children of those killed on 9/11 are following their parents into finance—some at the same investment firms. (Bloomberg)

The man in the red bandana. (ESPN)

Our series on the economic impact of 9/11, 20 years later. (Morning Brew)

Watch the documentary Man on Wire

NF

        

WHAT ELSE IS BREWING

  • Yahoo hired Tinder's CEO, Jim Lanzone, to become its own chief executive.
  • Uber Eats, Grubhub, and DoorDash sued NYC over a fee limit the city instituted during the pandemic.
  • Amazon is offering to pay the college tuition fees of 750,000 of its employees.
  • The Buccaneers-Cowboys football game Thursday night was the most-viewed NFL opener since 2015.

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BREW'S BETS

Two weird Reddit posts: On powerful showerheads and perhaps illegal onion futures.

Weekend conversation starters:

GAMES

Brew Crossword

Brew Crossword

OK, so you warmed up with the Mini on Thursday and now you're ready for the real deal. Here's the full crossword for your weekend enjoyment.

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Written by Jamie Wilde, Matty Merritt, and Neal Freyman

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