CNBC Daily Open: Lingering embers of inflation

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This report is from today's CNBC Daily Open, our new, international markets newsletter. CNBC Daily Open brings investors up to speed on everything they need to know, no matter where they are. Like what you see? You can subscribe here.

What you need to know today

Stocks sold off
U.S. stocks experienced a sell-off and all major indexes closed in the red. Meanwhile, U.S. Treasury yields rose for the second consecutive day. The pan-European Stoxx 600 lost 0.57%, with most sectors and all major bourses in negative territory. Relatedly, Germany's new manufacturing orders in July fell 11.7% month on month, according to provisional Destatis figures, a big plunge from June's 7.6% increase.

Inside the Magic Kingdom's chaos
What did a private bathroom, Oogie Boogie and a hippo have to do with the behind-the-scenes chaos between Bob Iger and Bob Chapek at Disney? CNBC's Alex Sherman spoke with more than 25 people who worked closely with Iger and Chapek between 2020 and 2022, uncovering the inside story of a CEO succession plan gone awry.

An Apple-Arm agreement
Apple has signed an agreement with Arm that "extends beyond 2040," Arm said in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing. This suggests Apple has secured access to the Arm architecture, an instruction set that outlines how a chip's central processor works, for the foreseeable future. That can only boost the excitement around Arm's upcoming IPO that values it as high as $52 billion.

EU-designated 'gatekeepers'
The European Commission designated Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, ByteDance, Meta and Microsoft as "gatekeepers" under its new Digital Markets Act. That means they're considered massive internet platforms which restrict access to services such as search and advertising, in the EU's views. The six tech giants have six months to bring their platform services into compliance with the EU's DMA.

[PRO] New on Goldman's conviction list
Goldman Sachs updated its conviction list, a collection of companies that the bank's global investment research department thinks are good buys. There's a new name on the list that Goldman thinks will experience a 27% growth in revenue in 2023 — and one that was removed after its shares tumbled 42% this year.

The bottom line

The roaring flames of 9.1% inflation in June last year have been quenched, but the last few glowing embers are proving hard to extinguish completely.

Oil prices are still rising from yesterday's news of supply cuts by Saudi Arabia and Russia, adding to inflationary pressures.

And today we found out the services and manufacturing sectors of the U.S. economy have been paying higher prices for inputs in August, according to the prices component of the ISM Services index and its manufacturing counterpart. Moreover, the report showed the services sector growing at a faster-than-expected clip for its eighth consecutive month of expansion and its highest reading since February.

For recession worriers, that sounds like good news. But markets have turned their focus from recession to stubborn inflation and the threat of higher interest rates.

Markets are "seemingly adopting a 'bad news is good news' view, rallying on weak growth data, and selling off on strong data — amid fears that too strong data will increase the risk of an additional rate hike," Goldman Sachs' Chris Hussey wrote in a Wednesday note.

Indeed, as Treasury yields jumped — the 2-year yield breached the 5% level once again — and bets of a rate hike in November increased, stocks were pressured. Rate-sensitive technology stocks were especially affected, with Nvidia and Apple losing more than 3% each. That caused the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite to sink 1.06% for its third straight day of losses. The S&P 500 retreated 0.7% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.57%.

A roaring blaze is dangerous. But more often than not, it's the embers smoldering in the underbush that cause the most damage — and ignite a wildfire again.

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