Top international headlines: Uber makes a loss, while Sony profits soar

Rihanna makes the billionaire list, rising aluminium prices depress consumers and more.

Cosmetic line dedicated to making “women everywhere [feel] included” gets Rihanna into the Forbes billionaire list, while PlayStation 5 boosts Sony’s profits. Meanwhile, the IMF approves $650 billion (R9.385 billion) for pandemic relief and Uber deals with widening losses.

Aluminium prices rise
The aluminium market has delivered disheartening news for consumers and economists hoping commodities inflation will soon subside.

The metal this week approached a decade high, with a more than 30 percent gain in benchmark prices so far this year. The warnings are the latest in a host of cautionary signals from companies that underscore the potentially far-reaching impact of the surge in commodities from corn to steel, reports Bloomberg.

IMF approves $650 billion (R9,385 billion) for pandemic relief
Member nations approved the biggest resource injection in the International Monetary Fund’s history, with $650 billion (R9.385 billion) meant to help countries deal with mounting debt and the fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic, according to Bloomberg.

The special drawing rights allocation will be effective on 23 August.

Rihanna makes Forbes billionaire list
Rihanna, the singer of hits such as Umbrella and We Found Love, is officially a billionaire and the world’s richest female musician.

However, most of her fortune, which Forbes magazine has estimated to be $1.7 billion (R25 billion), does not come from chart-topping singles, but from the success of her cosmetics empire, reports The Guardian.

Rihanna, real name Robyn Fenty, launched Fenty Beauty in 2017 with a dream to create a cosmetics company that made “women everywhere [feel] included”.

Sony profits soar
Profits at Sony Corporation have climbed by more than a quarter as demand for the PlayStation 5 games console, which boomed during the Covid-19 pandemic, continues to outpace supplies.

The Japanese entertainment and electronics conglomerate reported a 26 percent rise in operating profit in the three months to the end of June, reports The Guardian.

Uber reports widening losses
Uber Technologies has reported widening losses, by nearly $150 million (R2.166 billion) from the first quarter, as it spent more to entice drivers to return to its platform, sending shares of the ride-hail and food delivery company down in after-hours trade.

Investors sold the shares despite Uber management’s assurances that the company can deliver a sharp turnaround in profitability.