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April 26, 2019

Good morning.

Since it’s Friday, some feedback. Mike Luttig, the general counsel of Boeing, had a strong reaction to my suggestion that Boeing might have a Wells Fargo problem. He writes:

“Your piece this morning, Alan, is spectacularly wrong and grossly misleading. It is a disservice to Boeing, but more importantly, it is a profound disservice to the truth.”

Judge Luttig is an honorable man, and certainly knows far more about the Boeing situation than I do. But as I replied to him, if Boeing has a good story to tell, it isn’t doing a very good job of telling it. In particular, at a time like this, it would be helpful for the public to hear more from the CEO, Dennis Muilenburg. (His main public response to date has been this speech he gave at the George W. Bush Presidential Center Forum on April 11.)

ML also defends Boeing:

“Come on, Alan, if the flying public didn’t trust Boeing they wouldn’t be flying on any Boeing planes.”

Fair point.

Separately, JK took some pleasure in my interview with Marc Andreessen from 2015, when we sparred over whether the winner-take-most dynamics of the tech industry were contributing to inequality:

“I didn’t know you asked (Andreessen) that at that conference. I’m proud that my favorite high-level biz newsletter asked the tough questions. Congrats! And nice job pushing this narrative. It’s so true.”

Bruised and burnished, I’ll retire for the weekend. More news below.

Alan Murray
@alansmurray
alan.murray@fortune.com
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Top News

Uber IPO

Uber was gunning for an IPO valuation of up to $100 billion, but following Lyft's post-IPO struggles it's now looking at something in the $80 billion to $90 billion range. That's according to the Wall Street Journal, which reports Uber aims to raise $8 billion to $10 billion in the flotation. WSJ

Daimler Slump

Daimler suffered a 16% drop in profits during its first quarter, thanks to falling Mercedes-Benz deliveries and the expense of developing new models. "We now have to work hard to achieve our targets for 2019," said outgoing CEO Dieter Zetsche. Investors are keen to know what strategy Zetsche's replacement, Ola Kallenius, will have up his sleeve when he takes over next month. Bloomberg

Deutsche Bank

Sticking with German giants, Deutsche Bank's profits were up 67% in Q1, the company reported shortly after the collapse of merger talks with smaller German rival Commerzbank. The profit boost beat analyst expectations, and arguably demonstrated why the government-pushed merger—intended to rescue two struggling banks by fusing them—would have provided more risk than opportunity. CNBC

Amazon Prime

Amazon is pushing to deliver products to Prime subscribers around the world within one day rather than two. The company will invest $800 million this quarter in an attempt to halve the delivery window. CNN

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Around the Water Cooler

Central Banks

Central banks are the newest climate change activists, as Katherine Dunn writes for Fortune. Their approach is one of managing nations' financial risk, and doing nothing in the face of massive climate change is not an option. Case in point: the Bank of England, which last week announced it expects banks and insurance companies to disclose how they are dealing with that risk. Fortune

KPN and Huawei

The Dutch telecoms provider KPN is shunning Huawei's equipment for its core 5G network, after taking into account "the evolving assessment on the protection of vital infrastructure and the influence this may have on future Dutch policy." The Dutch government itself did not force KPN to make the call. Reuters

Australia and Huawei

As the South China Morning Post notes, Australia seems to be the only key U.S. intelligence ally that has gone ahead with a full ban on Huawei's 5G equipment. The paper reports that, with an Australian election coming up, Beijing may have more luck trying to win over a new government when it comes to allowing in the world's biggest telecoms equipment manufacturer. SCMP

Roche Delay

The Swiss drugmaker Roche is facing greater regulatory scrutiny than expected for its potential $4.3 billion takeover of gene therapy specialist Spark Therapeutics. It had already extended the offer until May 2 to allow the FTC to fully review the transaction, but it seems that review is taking even longer than expected, so the offer is now extended until June 3. Reuters

This edition of CEO Daily was edited by David Meyer. Find previous editions here, and sign up for other Fortune newsletters here.

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