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Starbucks introduces 7 cents charge for paper cup drinkers in London

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Starbucks has launched a five pence (seven cents) paper cup charge in 35 of its stores across London, with proceeds from the levy to be donated to environmental charity Hubbub.

Hubbub will assess how the trial, which is set to last three months, impacts customer behavior.

The funds raised will be used by Hubbub to support other campaigns looking to cut waste. The five pence fee will be added automatically to any paper cup purchase in the participating stores. People drinking inside a branch will be offered their drink in a ceramic, rather than paper, cup.

“We’re hoping that this charge will remind customers to rethink their use of single-use plastic-lined cups, as it has with plastic bags,” Starbucks Europe’s Simon Redfern said in a statement Monday. “We’ve offered a reusable cup discount for 20 years, with only 1.8 percent of customers currently taking up this offer, so we’re really interested in working with Hubbub to see how this charge could help to change behavior and help to reduce waste.”

Starbucks is the latest big business to try and mitigate its impact on the environment. In January, Evian, one of the world’s most iconic bottled water brands, announced it would produce all its plastic bottles from 100 percent recycled plastic by the year 2025. British supermarket Iceland, which specializes in frozen food, has made a commitment to eliminate plastic packaging from its own brand products by the end of 2023.

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SoftBank Vision Fund losing Jeff Housenbold, who led DoorDash deal

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Jeff Housenbold, managing partner at SoftBank’s Vision Fund

SoftBank

SoftBank’s Jeff Housenbold, who led the Vision Fund’s investments in companies including DoorDash, OpenDoor and Wag, is leaving the firm later this year.

SoftBank shook up the Silicon Valley investment world with the first Vision Fund in 2017, ultimately raising $100 billion, funded in large part by the Public Investment Fund of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The Japanese company had been targeting an even bigger amount for Vision Fund 2 but scaled it way back last year after many of its high-priced investments hit snags.

In a memo sent internally on Friday and viewed by CNBC, Vision Fund head Rajeev Misra said that Housenbold is departing to “run his own business.” Housenbold has been with the Vision Fund during its ups and downs, leading some of the most high-profile deals with mixed results.

“As many of you know, Jeff was my first hire and over the last three and a half years he successfully led our investments in 17 companies across Fund 1 and Fund 2, including DoorDash (DASH), Opendoor (OPEN), Compass, Rappi, Alto, and Memphis Meats,” Misra wrote in the memo.

Axios previously reported on his departure. Housenbold confirmed the move on Twitter.

Housenbold, who was previously CEO of Shutterfly, had a strong end to 2020, with DoorDash’s IPO and Opendoor’s public market debut through a special purpose acquisition company. SoftBank’s stake in food delivery app DoorDash has jumped to $12 billion, with the stock rallying since its IPO, and its stake in real estate company OpenDoor is about $2 billion, according to FactSet.

He also had some losers. In 2018, he led a $300 million investment in dog-walking app Wag before selling the Vision Fund’s stake back to the company less than two years later as the business struggled. Also in 2018, the Vision Fund put $240 million into e-commerce start-up Brandless, with Housenbold taking a board seat. Early last year, the company shut down and was later recapitalized.

SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman signing a memorandum of understanding between Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and the SoftBank Vision Fund.

Tom DiChristopher | CNBC

Housenbold spoke to CNBC in March of 2020 as the SoftBank was dealing with the fallout of the WeWork catastrophe and Uber’s struggles while also preparing for a slowdown caused by the pandemic. He was among the executives at the firm considering its “Plan Bs.”  

“If the markets go into a prolonged slump of 12 to 24 months and there’s not access to public markets, we’ll have to look at raising additional capital at the company level,” Housenbold said at the time. “There’s debt, there’s equity players, there’s mergers and acquisitions.”

Misra said in the memo that Housenbold will stay with the Vision Fund for six months, and then serve as a senior adviser to Misra and SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son. 

— CNBC’s Alex Sherman contributed to this report

WATCH: Softbank Vision Fund managing partner on Opendoor SPAC

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release of fourth quarter, full-year 2020 GDP

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Employees working on a dry-type transformer production line at an electrical production factory in Haian, in eastern China’s Jiangsu province on Jan. 4, 2021.

Stringer | AFP | Getty Images

BEIJING — China reported GDP rose 2.3% last year as the world struggled to contain the coronavirus pandemic.

However, Chinese consumers remained reluctant to spend, as retail sales contracted 3.9% for the year. Retail sales for the fourth quarter rose 4.6% from a year ago.

Gross domestic product grew by 6.5% in the fourth quarter from a year ago.

Economists expected China to have been the only major economy to grow last year, and predicted GDP expanded by just over 2%.

Covid-19 first emerged in the Chinese city of Wuhan in late 2019. In an effort to control the virus, Chinese authorities shut down more than half the country, and the economy contracted by 6.8% in the first three months of 2020.

However, China returned to growth by the second quarter. Economists polled by Reuters predicted GDP would increase 6.1% in the fourth quarter, faster than the 4.9% pace of the prior quarter.

China’s GDP growth figure this year will come off a lowered base.

In late December, the National Bureau of Statistics lowered China’s official growth rate for 2019 to 6.0%, versus the previously reported 6.1%. The cut primarily occurred in manufacturing, as factories dealt with new U.S. tariffs on billions of dollars’ worth of Chinese goods.

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How to use your iPhone’s health-tracking features

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Apple announces new app for health studies.

Suorce: Apple

Apple‘s main selling point for the Apple Watch is tracking your health, including activity, sleep and certain medical conditions.

But it’s not the only Apple product that can help you get in shape and stay healthy. The humble iPhone has plenty of health-tracking features as well.

You might already know that you can track your steps, for example. But the Health app built-into your iPhone can do a lot more, like tracking how long you practice mindfulness through third-party apps, determining how long you spent in bed, your walking speed and more.

Here are some examples of how the iPhone can help you get healthy:

Track your steps on iPhone

Apple

The Health app can automatically track the number of steps you take in a day. It can also track the number of stairs climbed and total distance you’ve traveled.

To do that:

  • Open Settings on your iPhone.
  • Tap Privacy.
  • Tap Motion & Fitness.
  • Turn on “Fitness Tracking.”

View your steps and other metrics:

  • Open Health.
  • Tap “Browse” on the bottom-right.
    Choose “Activity.”

Apple Health on iPhone

Apple

Apple doesn’t have its own meditation app, unless you count some of the exercises in its Fitness+ subscription service, which has mindful cooldown and yoga workouts. But, it can keep track of the time you spend meditating in third-party apps like Calm or Headspace. If you install those apps you’ll get a prompt to save information to Apple Health and, once you do, you can keep track of how long you meditate each day over time inside the app.

You need an Apple Watch to track your sleep, but the iPhone can keep track of how long you’re in bed, and save that information.

It’s not a great analysis of your sleep but you can get an idea of your sleep patterns and if you pick up your iPhone at night. You can turn this on by selecting “options” under the “Full Schedule & Options” menu.

The iPhone also has a “wind down” feature which automatically puts your iPhone in Do Not Disturb Mode and dims the screen. Once in that mode, you can set shortcuts on your lock screen to access meditation apps, a reading app like Kindle or Apple Books and more. I use it every night so my iPhone doesn’t disturb me when I sleep.

Here’s how to turn it on:

  • Open the Health app on your iPhone.
  • Tap Browse on the bottom-right.
  • Choose Sleep.
  • Enter in the time you typically go to bed and wake up.
  • Select “Full Schedule & Options” under “Your Schedule.”
  • Under “Wind Down” select how long prior to bed you want Wind Down to begin.
  • Select Shortcuts you want your iPhone to display on the lock screen, like Headspace or Kindle.

Cycle tracking on iPhone

Apple

For women, the iPhone can track menstrual cycles and predict your next period and fertile windows. You can also keep a log of your period flow level, any symptoms you might have that you want to share with your doctor and more. It also can factor in things that might affect your fertility window, like pregnancy or contraception.

Here’s how to set it up:

  • Open the Health app on your iPhone.
  • Tap Browse on the bottom-right.
  • Choose Cycle Tracking.
  • Tap “Get Started.”

Headphone Audio Levels

Apple

A feature called “Headphone Audio Levels” can keep track of how loud your headphone audio is and will let you know if you’ve listened to music too loud over the recommended limit. Listening to music at over 90 dB over four hours per week, for example, would trigger that alert.

Here’s how to set it up:

  • Open the Health app on your iPhone.
  • Tap Browse on the bottom-right.
  • Tap Hearing.
  • Choose Headphone audio levels.

Apple Health Recordss

Apple

You can keep track of the health records from your doctor visits if your physician’s office supports integration with Apple Health. This lets you see all sorts of information, including immunizations, blood test results, past medical procedures and more.

See if your doctor’s office integrates with Apple Health

  • Tap your profile picture.
  • Tap Health Records under Features.
  • Tap “Add Account”
  • Search for your hospital, network or doctor’s location.
  • Select your provider.
  • Tap “Connect to Account.”
  • Log-in to your doctor’s portal and allow it to access Apple Health.

Apple also has a “health checklist” built into iOS 14, which came out in September 2020.

Health Checklist will help create a medical ID on your phone that you or someone else can show to first responders. It’s got vital information such as whether or not you’re an organ donor, the type of blood you have, allergies and reactions, medicine you’re taking, your height and weight and more. You enter in this data yourself, so you don’t have to include any of it if you don’t want to.

The health checklist can also help you set up the Emergency SOS, a feature on your iPhone that will automatically call emergency services if you tap the side button of the phone 5 times in rapid succession. If you press and hold the button, it will also send a message to any contacts you add in Emergency SOS. I have my immediate family members set up in mine, for example.

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