Real quick: Today's Female Friday edition of Axios Markets is for my mom. It was her 29th birthday again yesterday (truly amazing!) and as her proud son, she has shown me that women can do anything.
About Female Friday: Every month since April I have written a newsletter that quotes women and only women on the first Friday of the month (except last month and this month when it was the second Friday of the month).
Was this email forwarded to you? Sign up here.
(Today's Smart Brevity count: 1,075 words, ~ 4 minutes.)
Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios
China's economic growth has weakened to the slowest pace in nearly three decades this year, the result of a gradual shift to a new economy and a damaging trade war with the U.S.
What's happening: China's onshore stocks, dubbed A shares, have delivered more than 37% total return for investors this year, based on the FTSE A share 200 index, FactSet data show.
By the numbers:
What they're saying: China's A shares have been able to shine in large part because they reflect the growth of the Chinese private sector and middle-class consumers, Asha Mehta, senior portfolio manager at Acadian Asset Management, tells Axios.
What it means: China's A shares also have gotten a big boost from the country's deregulation and market liberalization initiatives, the Chinese government's stimulus measures and particularly from increased weighting in MSCI's emerging markets index.
Yes, but: A major reason Chinese securities had previously been excluded from many global benchmarks, including MSCI, is that they have been prone to speculative activity, alleged government interference and a lack of governance.
The bottom line: China has the second-largest stock market in the world and is growing fast, but mainland Chinese stocks are still owned by very few outside China.
China's A shares may have further to go, as inclusion in MSCI's emerging markets index has been a major driver of inflows and more stocks are set to be added.
Why it matters: MSCI inclusion is seen as a stamp of approval from the investment community that equities are safe.
The U.S. Senate may soon be taking on noncompete agreements, after a rare bipartisan bill to declare them illegal in most instances was introduced and has gained support.
What it means: The Workforce Mobility Act would ban the use of noncompete agreements except in connection with the dissolution of a partnership or the sale of a business.
Why it matters: Previously a rare clause, companies have recently been instituting noncompete agreements into the contracts of "janitors, receptionists, customer service workers, fledgling journalists, even employees of a day care center," according to analysis from the Economic Policy Institute.
The big picture: "Workers’ inability to leave their jobs because of non-compete agreements and similar limitations has also contributed to the wage stagnation of recent decades," legal experts Jane Flanagan and Terri Gerstein write for EPI's Working Economics blog.
Over the course of the year, U.S. consumers have remained confident about the economy while CEOs have grown more uncertain.
After beating earnings estimates on the top and bottom lines, Disney announced it had reached a deal with Amazon to put Disney+ on Amazon Fire TV devices, and on Samsung and LG televisions.
Why it matters: Axios' Sara Fischer writes: A streaming distribution partnership between Amazon and Disney seemed uncertain after it was reported last month that the two companies were at odds over advertising terms.
The big picture: Disney's banking its future on its new streaming initiatives.
Sara's thought bubble: Where Disney will be most competitive is its content offering and competitive pricing. Disney+ costs less than Netflix and Amazon Prime and its bundled service will cost the same as Netflix's most popular subscription tier.
Why it matters to the market: Even before the partnership announcement, Disney's stock had risen thanks to the strong earnings report.
Go deeper: Subscribe to Sara's Axios Media Trends newsletter.
The dollar rose to its highest level in five weeks against the Japanese yen on Thursday, as currency markets also took their cue from seemingly reduced tensions between the U.S. and China.
What they're saying: "[F]or now the latest headlines suggest progress towards a meaningful agreement, which is enough to boost risk appetite," Kathy Lien, managing director of FX strategy at BK Asset Management, says in a note to clients.
What to watch: Lien points out that "the restrained rally" in currencies like the Australian and New Zealand dollars that typically perform well when investors favor risky assets, "reflect the market's cautiousness in this headline driven market."