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Recognition…Jessica Kourkounis for the New York Times
Joshua Harris, a top executive at Apollo Global Management, said Thursday that he was planning to quit his day-to-day duties at the private equity giant after arguing with his co-founders over Leon Black’s departure from the company’s executive director .
The departure of Mr. Harris, 56, comes months after arguing that Mr. Black should resign immediately after Apollo’s investigation into his ties to Jeffrey Epstein, the late financier and registered sex offender. Mr. Harris was overruled by the other two members of the Apollo Executive Committee, the company’s other founders, Mr. Black and Marc Rowan.
Mr. Harris was one of Apollo’s most visible and practical managers, but instead of following Mr. Black as managing director, he lost to Mr. Rowan, who announced last year that he would be doing a “semi-sabbatical”. by the company.
In March, Mr. Black, who had agreed to step down as director in July and remain chairman, unexpectedly relinquished all of his duties. At the time, Mr. Black cited health reasons and continued media coverage of his dealings with Mr. Epstein.
But until then, Mr. Harris was viewed as less of a leader in the company. It was Mr. Rowan who led Apollo’s acquisition of Athene, a large insurance and credit company that is expected to add to the company’s investment power.
Mr Harris was not on Apollo’s quarterly analyst earnings call earlier this month, an absence noted by a participant on the call, leading to speculation that his role at Apollo had diminished since Mr Rowan’s rise.
Mr. Harris wanted Mr. Black to make a complete break with Apollo after a law firm appointed by Apollo’s board of directors found that Mr. Black had paid Mr. Epstein $ 158 million in fees and an additional $ 30 million in recent years Borrowed dollars. Mr. Harris was concerned that institutional investors in Apollo funds might be concerned by the law firm’s results, although the report concluded that Mr. Black had paid Mr. Epstein for legitimate tax planning advice and had done nothing inappropriate.
Apollo’s shares, which lagged behind their peers during the law firm’s investigation into the matter, have risen about 20 percent since Mr Black resigned as chairman.
Apollo’s board of directors hired the outside law firm to investigate after a report was published in the New York Times in October on Mr. Black’s business and social relationships with Mr. Epstein, who died in federal custody in August 2019 until he was charged with sex trafficking was charged.
Mr Harris will formally resign after Apollo finalizes the Athene deal, which is expected to be completed early next year. He remains a member of the company’s board of directors and executive committee. Mr. Harris, like Mr. Black, is one of Apollo’s largest shareholders.
He is expected to focus on a number of other business interests, including his co-ownership of several professional sports franchises – including the Philadelphia 76ers basketball team and the New Jersey Devils hockey team – and his family office. He is also expected to focus more on philanthropy.
“I became increasingly involved in these areas and knew that one day they would be my primary responsibility,” Harris wrote in an internal memorandum reviewed by The Times.
Mr Harris, whose net worth is estimated at just $ 5 billion, recently bought a $ 32 million mansion in Miami.
Wall Street stocks rose Thursday and rebounded from three consecutive days of selling.
The S&P 500 rose 0.3 percent in early trading. The index was down 1.4 percent by Wednesday’s close of trading, after falling the same amount the week before. Technology stocks led the rebound on Thursday, with the Nasdaq Composite rising more than 1 percent.
Concerns about rapid economic growth fueling inflation, as well as rising cases of coronavirus in some parts of the world, have undermined recent optimism about the global economic recovery from the pandemic.
On Wednesday, minutes of the Federal Reserve’s latest meeting indicated that several officials believed they might begin discussing the bank’s bond-buying program “at some point in the upcoming meetings”. Investors have speculated that the central bank would have to do this as price hikes accelerated. On the same day, data showed that the UK’s annual inflation rate doubled to 1.5 percent in April.
The European stock indices were higher on Thursday. The Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.8 percent as gains in healthcare and industrials outweighed falls in energy company stocks. The FTSE 100 in the UK rose around half a percent.
Bitcoin traded just below $ 40,000 on Thursday morning after a volatile day on Wednesday when the price fell below $ 32,000.
Another major cryptocurrency, Ethereum, has made up some of its losses since Wednesday when it fell about 20 percent.
Elsewhere in the markets
Oatly, the oat-based milk substitute, has valued its shares at $ 17 each for its IPO, the company said on Wednesday, valuing them at around $ 10 billion. Oatly is expected to trade with the ticker symbol “OTLY” on Thursday.
Oil prices fell. The futures on West Texas Intermediate, the US benchmark, fell half a percent to $ 63.02 a barrel.
The first claims to state unemployment benefits fell again last week and have continued to decline steadily since the beginning of the year, the Ministry of Labor reported on Thursday.
The weekly number was slightly below 455,000, a decrease of 37,000 from the previous week and the lowest weekly total since before the pandemic. New entitlements to Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, a federally funded program for unemployed freelancers, gig workers, and others normally not eligible for government benefits totaled 95,000. The figures are not seasonally adjusted.
New state claims remain historically high, but are below half of the level recorded at the beginning of January. The benefit claims, which are something of a proxy for layoffs, have declined as business has returned to fuller lines of business, especially in heavily impacted industries like leisure and hospitality.
More than 20 Republican-led states have announced that they will end federal government-funded emergency relief programs in June or early July. Income discourages recipients from looking for work as some employers complain of job filling problems. These programs not only include support for pandemic unemployment, but also extended benefits for the long-term unemployed.
Ford on Wednesday unveiled an electric version of its popular F-150 pickup truck called the Lightning, which signals a shift in the thrust of electric vehicles in the auto industry that was previously geared towards niche markets.
With an electric motor on each of its axles, the vehicle offers more torque – effectively faster acceleration – than any previous F-150 and can pull up to 10,000 pounds, reports Neal E. Boudette for The New York Times. According to Ford, the battery can consume 9.6 kilowatts of energy, so it can supply a house with electricity for about three days during an outage.
For contractors and other commercial truck users, the Lightning can power electric saws, tools, and lights, potentially replacing or reducing the need for generators in workplaces. It has up to 11 sockets.
The truck is expected to go on sale next spring. It starts at $ 39,974 for a model that can travel 230 miles on a full charge. A 300 mile range version starts at $ 59,974.
The base price of the truck is a few thousand dollars less than a Tesla Model 3 and even the company’s own Mustang Mach-E sport utility vehicle. The total cost is even lower as Ford EV buyers are still eligible for the $ 7,500 tax credit available for EV purchases. Some states, such as California, New Jersey, and New York, offer additional discounts up to $ 5,000.
Recognition…Philip Cheung for the New York Times
The Alamo Drafthouse theater chain took its 3,100 employees on leave during the pandemic, filed for bankruptcy in December, closed three theaters as part of its restructuring plan and suspended a planned project in Orlando. AMC Entertainment’s executive director Adam Aron said this month that the chain “ran out of cash five different times between April 2020 and January 2021 in a matter of months or weeks”.
Now the theaters are trying to reassure people that the problems are over, reports Nicole Sperling for the New York Times. That films are coming back with a vengeance and going to the cinema should soon be back to normal.
“It’s magical what we do,” said Tim League, Alamo’s founder, in a telephone interview. He admitted his company was dangerously close to running out of money in December before filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. “We strive to create the best possible viewing experience – to lose ourselves in an amazing story and to increase the emotions. It’s amazing when done right and we are in the business of getting it right. I know that people crave a return to any type of experience outside of the home, be with people, and feel like they are re-entering the community. “
Around 70 percent of moviegoers like to return to the theater, according to the exhibition research company National Research Group. The box office for April was $ 190 million, up 300 percent since February. This is a welcome relief for the South African director Neill Blomkamp, whose new horror film “Demonic” from the indie outfit IFC will not be released until the end of August.
“I enjoy that,” he said in a video message. “I want people to be scared in a darkened theater.”