Here’s what you need to know at the end of the day.
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Good evening. Here’s the latest at the end of Thursday.
1. The largest U.S. banks agreed to prop up a struggling midsize bank to restore confidence in the industry.
First Republic Bank, which has been at the center of the crisis engulfing a sliver of the banking sector, will receive $30 billion in deposits from a group of 11 other banks that are seeking to stave off a collapse. Four of the country’s biggest banks — JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup and Wells Fargo — agreed to contribute $5 billion each. Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley will contribute $2.5 billion each.
The idea for the rescue deal was first proposed by Treasury Secretary Yellen, who believed that an injection of money into First Republic would be a strong sign of private sector support, according to a person familiar with discussions. She talked about the plan yesterday with Jerome Powell, the chairman of the Fed, and finalized it alongside Jamie Dimon, the chief executive of JPMorgan Chase.
Investors welcomed news of the deal and the S&P 500 rose 1.8 percent after recovering from an early drop. Still, regional banks remain a source of worry after the failures of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank last week.
2. President Emmanuel Macron of France pushed his pension plan through without a full vote.
Macron used a constitutional measure to enact the deeply unpopular legislation — which raises the retirement age for most workers to 64 from 62 — without putting it to a vote in the National Assembly. The move inflamed an already tense confrontation over the measure and set the stage for a no-confidence vote against his government.
The decision prompted raucous protests inside the Assembly chamber, where opposition lawmakers sang the French national anthem and banged on their desks. In the streets, protesters pledged to continue their fight against the proposal.
Macron says France’s pension system is in “an increasingly precarious state.” But his plan has angered a society that reveres retirement and a generous balance between work and leisure.
3. Poland said it would send warplanes to Ukraine.
Poland’s president, Andrzej Duda, said that his country would transfer four Soviet-designed MIG fighter jets to Ukraine within days, taking a significant step that other allies have so far been reluctant to make. It would be the first delivery of fighter jets by a NATO country to Ukraine, while still falling short of Kyiv’s requests for advanced American aircrafts.
A White House spokesman said that Poland’s move “doesn’t change our calculus,” adding that the U.S. still had no plans to send American-made F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine.
In other news from the region, the Pentagon released the first declassified video images of the events leading up to a Russian fighter jet colliding with an unarmed U.S. reconnaissance drone on Tuesday.
Also, Ukraine is using ammunition faster than its allies can resupply it, putting future battles at risk.
4. The Biden administration demanded that TikTok’s Chinese owners sell the app or face a possible ban.
The demand to sell the app was delivered to TikTok — which is owned by the Chinese internet company ByteDance — in recent weeks, two people with knowledge of the matter said. The move is a significant shift in the Biden administration’s position toward TikTok. The app has been under scrutiny over fears that Beijing could use it to request Americans’ data.
TikTok said it was weighing its options and was disappointed by the decision. The company said its proposed security measures, which it had been negotiating with the White House last year, would provide Americans with adequate data protection.
In related news, Britain became the latest Western government to prohibit the use of TikTok on its devices. Canada, India and the E.U. have also cracked down on the app.
5. Deaths of pregnant women soared during the pandemic.
In 2021, the first full year of the coronavirus pandemic, 1,205 pregnant women died in the U.S., according to new government data. The number represents a 40 percent increase in maternal deaths compared with 2020’s toll and a 60 percent increase compared with 2019’s. For Black and Native American women, the rise in mortality rates were particularly acute.
For more: Here’s what pregnant women can do to protect themselves from Covid.
In other health news, a judge said he would decide soon whether to issue an injunction that could, at least temporarily, take a widely used abortion pill off the market.
6. Florida is continuing its crackdown on “prohibited topics” in textbooks.
The administration of Gov. Ron DeSantis — which rejected dozens of math books that it said contained topics like critical race theory last year — is now eyeing perhaps the most contentious subject in education: social studies. A conservative group that volunteered to review the book complained, for example, that one textbook mentioned slavery 189 times within a few chapters alone.
The debate has become so politically fraught that one publisher created multiple versions of its social studies materials, softening or eliminating references to race — even in the story of Rosa Parks — as it sought to gain approval in Florida.
In other education news, a federal regulation penalizes applicants to the Fulbright-Hays fellowship if they speak the language of their proposed research destination. Some applicants say the rule is discriminatory.
7. As pillaged artifacts return to Wounded Knee, a local tribe debates what’s next.
After more than a century in a tiny Massachusetts museum, a trove of moccasins, sacred pipes, ritual clothing and other items were returned to the Oglala Sioux Tribe last year. Some of the items are believed to have been taken after the 1890 massacre of Native Americans in Wounded Knee, S.D.
Amid signs that more institutions are beginning to repatriate Native holdings, tribes like the Oglala Sioux find themselves confronting complicated questions about how to handle returns in ways that honor the dead and the past, and that facilitate healing.
8. The N.C.A.A. men’s basketball tournament tipped off today. We already have a major upset.
No. 13 seed Furman knocked off Virginia, a No. 4 seed, after an improbable last-second steal was followed by a three-pointer. That put the little-known South Carolina-based university ahead by one point and kept their season alive. Watch the final seconds here.
Also advancing to the next round: Maryland, Missouri, Alabama, San Diego State and Kansas. Here’s what else to watch for tonight.
For more: Check out how your bracket is faring so far.
Tomorrow, the women’s tournament begins with its opening slate of 16 games. South Carolina, the No. 1 overall seed, is far and away the team to beat, though Indiana also had one of its best years in history.
9. What to do tonight:
Cook: These salmon hand rolls are a great way to use leftovers.
Listen: The entrancing music of melting ice captures the sound of climate change.
Watch: Keira Knightley plays a dogged journalist in “Boston Strangler,” a true-crime drama streaming on Hulu.
Hunt: Which Manhattan home would you choose with a $1 million budget?
Play: Today’s Spelling Bee, Wordle and Mini Crossword. For more, find all our games here.
10. And finally, the rise of the afternoon fun economy.
As working remotely has become the new norm for millions of Americans, the leisure industry is facing a surge in demand for midafternoon services. Flexible work means people can push back their professional responsibilities into the evening and take care of personal ones — like a workout or beauty treatment — during the day.
The change is particularly noticeable at the driving range. Using geolocation data, one study found that there were 278 percent more people playing golf at 4 p.m. on a Wednesday in August 2022 than in August 2019. Hair salons, gyms and others in the service industry have also felt the shift.
“I think 4 p.m. is going to be the new 7 p.m.” one yoga executive said.
Have an easygoing night.
Brent Lewis compiled photos for this briefing.
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