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BLACKWATER USA | DAILY BRIEF


Coming Up This Week

  • The Tour de France ends today, and Slovenian leader Tadej Pogacar is poised to become the youngest post-WWII winner in his first Tour at age 22.

  • Tropical Storm Beta—named so since we’ve run out of hurricane names and moved on to Greek letters—will reach the U.S. Gulf Coast today.

  • Tuesday is the autumnal equinox: the first day of fall.

LME Commodity Spot Prices

  • Aluminum: $1,745/ton

  • Copper: $6,834/ton

  • Cobalt: $33,980/ton

  • Gold: $1,954/ton

China

  • Pres. Trump postponed a ban on TikTok that was supposed to go into effect today after telling reporters he’d given his “blessing” to a deal that would see Oracle buy a 12.5% stake in TikTok. The ban was only postponed one week, but that could be enough time for China to approve a deal and end the tumult. Under the terms of the proposed deal, TikTok would establish a new U.S.-based headquarters and create 25,000 U.S. jobs.

  • Separately, a U.S. judge blocked the Trump administration’s order for Apple and Google to ban WeChat downloads starting today, citing First Amendment concerns.

Afghanistan

  • Intra-Afghan talks in Doha are said to be progressing slowly, and continued Taliban attacks back in Afghanistan can’t help—nor can government airstrikes on Taliban positions, one of which killed over 40 Taliban fighters and at least 12 civilians in Kunduz yesterday.

  • VOA says the Taliban is insisting on an “Islamic system of government,” but adds that the two sides are still finalizing “rules of negotiations” rather than actually negotiating yet.

Libya

  • Libya’s western government is reportedly refusing to agree to a proposed deal to resume oil production that its deputy prime minister had initially approved. Eastern government officials seem to think it was Turkey that pushed the western government to backtrack on the deal, which included a term barring the use of oil money to pay for Turkish mercenaries or weapons. PM Fayez al Serraj has not accepted the deal yet.

  • Nonetheless, Libya’s National Oil Corporation (run by the western government) lifted force majeure on oil facilities from which Haftar’s forces have withdrawn, but retained it on facilities that still host fighters.

Iran

  • SecState Pompeo announced that the U.S. would reimpose sanctions on Iran, despite opposition to them from UNSC members. Iran’s UN Ambassador called the sanctions “null and void.”

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