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EMEA Morning Briefing: Stocks to Waver at Open as -2-

12/24/2021 | 12:41am EDT

Saudi Arabia has imported sensitive missile technology from the Chinese military and is manufacturing its own ballistic missiles, according to Saudi advisers and officials familiar with U.S. intelligence, raising new worries of a Middle East arms race.

The Saudi effort is the latest in a series of moves by U.S. allies in the Middle East to increase military cooperation with China in a trend that has angered the Biden administration during a period of heightened animosity between Washington and Beijing.

U.N. Plans $8 Billion Fund to Restart Afghanistan's Economy

The United Nations is planning an $8 billion program of aid and services in Afghanistan for next year, taking on many government functions at a time when the Taliban regime remains under economic sanctions and lacks diplomatic recognition, according to international officials.

From providing hot meals for children in schools, to generating jobs or finding ways to pay Afghanistan's energy bills to its neighbors, the U.N.'s plan would move beyond its current humanitarian mission to rebuilding governing systems and social services.

Russian Guns-for-Hire Fill Void in Africa and Elsewhere as Western Militaries Pull Back

Russian mercenaries have deployed to the African country of Mali, European governments said, opening a new front in a confrontation with the West at the same time as Moscow has gathered military forces around Ukraine.

The deployment comes after French forces in Mali earlier this month left a base in Timbuktu, part of a military drawdown after struggling to quash an Islamist insurgency.

CK Asset to Sell Aircraft-Leasing Business for $4.28 Billion

CK Asset Holdings Ltd. is selling its aircraft-leasing business to a consortium involving private-equity firm Carlyle Group Inc. for $4.28 billion as the airline industry continues to face severe challenges from Covid-19.

As risk and return dynamics became increasingly volatile, the industry has experienced increased levels of consolidation, mergers and acquisitions, CK Asset said Friday.

China Mobile Exercises Greenshoe Option Amid High Demand

China Mobile Ltd. has exercised the green shoe option in its blockbuster Shanghai offering, issuing an additional 126.9 million shares amid high investor demand.

The additional shares, issued at the previously-disclosed offering price of 57.58 yuan each, will bring the telco's Shanghai listing proceeds to a total of CNY56.00 billion ($8.79 billion), making it one of the largest equity fundraisings so far this year.

Amazon Reaches Federal Settlement Allowing Workers More Leeway to Organize

Amazon.com Inc. has reached a settlement with the National Labor Relations Board to make it easier for its employees to organize at work, a step that comes as its workers in some areas continue to push for unionization.

Under the agreement, which was approved by both parties Wednesday, Amazon will notify past and current warehouse staff of their rights to organize in its buildings via email and other internal communications. The settlement also would allow the NLRB to more quickly hold Amazon accountable should it violate the terms of the agreement, according to the federal agency.

United, Delta Cancel Some Flights as Omicron Spreads

United Airlines Holdings Inc. is canceling dozens of flights over the holiday weekend as a surge of Covid-19 cases affects crews, and Delta Air Lines Inc. also cited the Omicron variant as a factor behind a number of cancellations.

At both airlines, the cancellations account for a relatively small share of planned flying.

Tesla to Restrict In-Car Gaming Following Federal Probe

Tesla Inc. is restricting access to the games available in its vehicles, disabling a feature that allowed people to play games on a front touch screen while driving, according to the top U.S. auto safety regulator.

The reversal comes after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, concerned about possible driver distraction, launched an investigation into the feature earlier this week.

Write to sarka.halas@wsj.com

Expected Major Events for Friday

05:30/NED: 3Q GDP - 2nd estimate

15:59/UKR: 3Q Unemployment

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This article is a text version of a Wall Street Journal newsletter published earlier today.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

12-24-21 0040ET

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
CHINA MOBILE LIMITED 1.05% 51 Delayed Quote.13.03%
CK ASSET HOLDINGS LIMITED 0.10% 52.35 Delayed Quote.6.41%
DELTA AIR LINES, INC. 1.61% 37.84 Delayed Quote.-4.76%
DOW JONES AFRICA TITANS 50 INDEX -0.84% 502.1 Real-time Quote.-5.57%
S&P 500 0.10% 3945.07 Real-time Quote.-17.30%
S&P AFRICA 40 INDEX -1.20% 161.05 Real-time Quote.-6.89%
TESLA, INC. 4.79% 658.355 Delayed Quote.-40.56%
THE CARLYLE GROUP INC. 0.33% 35.97 Delayed Quote.-34.74%
UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS, INC. 1.71% 42.275 Delayed Quote.-5.05%
UNITED STATES DOLLAR (B) / CHINESE YUAN IN HONG KONG (USD/CNH) 0.86% 6.71398 Delayed Quote.4.79%
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