In this week's wrapup, we talk about the newspaper industry's battle against customs duty, the plausibility of a Tata Sons IPO, the Digital Competition Bill, why Bengaluru is facing a water crisis and coral bleaching.

For the markets edition, we talk about the gold price rise.

Gold is akin to religion. And legendary investor Howard Marks has a unique take on it. His idea is that just like God, you either believe in gold or you don't. Gold lacks intrinsic value and thrives on sentiment. And that's why there are conflicting opinions about this asset class.

Yet, amidst global turmoil and geopolitical tensions, its value skyrockets. Why?

Click here to find out.

Meanwhile, here’s a recap of what we wrote over the week.

Is the newspaper industry fighting an endless battle?

The fate of physical newspapers seems to be hanging in the balance, thanks to the digital revolution. Over the years newspaper readership has declined and costs have only piled up for the folks in the publishing industry.

But it's not just the growth of digital media that's causing the trouble. Publishers are even blaming government policies for their woes. Why?

See, geopolitical tensions disrupted the newsprint supply chain and domestic manufacturers struggled to meet demand. But even amidst that, a customs duty on newsprint imports continued. And the newspaper industry wants it waived.

But will it get what it wants? Find out in Monday's newsletter here.

Will we see a Tata Sons IPO?

Tata Sons, the holding company of Tata Group, seems to be in a dilemma. Thanks to an RBI rule that might force it to go public by September 2025.

But here's the thing. Tata Sons doesn't really need more money. And neither would it be too happy going public. Because being a private company as it is now, means that it gets to keep its affairs to itself. So it’s only responsible to its limited set of shareholders. But going public would increase scrutiny over its actions. And it may not even have a free hand in making business decisions.

So an IPO may not be a priority on its to-do list.

Although these facts are several months old, why is there still significant speculation regarding a potential Tata Sons IPO? Head over to Tuesday's newsletter to find out.

What's the Digital Competition Bill anyway?

Microsoft Excel is a cheater!

Okay. Before you slam that as a controversial statement, hear us out.

Excel is no doubt a great spreadsheet software. But one reason why it was able to make its way to the top was because the tech giant Microsoft was dominant in the Operating Systems (OS) market. And that meant that it jostled other popular spreadsheet software by simply being slipped in as a bundled service with the Windows OS.

And that landed Microsoft in an antitrust lawsuit in the 1990s. Microsoft lost. And that was supposed to be a landmark case so that no company abuses its dominant position ever again.

But not much has changed even today. And maybe that has inspired global governments including India to kick off laws that regulate digital competition.

So in Wednesday's newsletter we tell you all about India's potential Digital Competition Bill.

Why is Bengaluru facing a water crisis?

In the 1800s Bengaluru had about 1,400 water bodies. But that number has dipped to less than 200 today.

How did that happen?

Well, you could blame 3 things:
1. The rising population
2. Real estate developers lapping up water bodies to build homes and offices
3. Groundwater exploitation through deeply dug borewells

And you probably already know this. But in Thursday's newsletter we uncover some lesser-known facts about Bengaluru's water crisis and trace the journey back to the root of the problem.

Curious much? Click here to read it.

What if the world's coral reefs disappeared?

Coral reefs are like the bustling metropolises of marine life. They thrive amidst the serene depths of the oceans and were nurtured over millions of years.

But these vibrant ecosystems, now face an existential threat. Thanks to coral bleaching.

See, global temperatures are rising. And that stresses out corals to the effect that they become malnourished. This slowly bleaches them off of their beautiful colours, leading to their death.

Should we be worried though?

Of course we should. To find out why, head over to Friday's newsletter where we talk about the repercussions of coral bleaching and the economic loss pegged to it.

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That's it from us this week. Have a great weekend!

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