The Astros Are Baseball’s Most Business-like Buzzsaw

Nobody has won a World Series without losing a postseason game since 1976. Of course, Major League Baseball’s playoffs were smaller back then: The ’76 Cincinnati Reds beat the Philadelphia Phillies in a three-game National League Championship Series, then swept the New York Yankees in a four-game World Series. The playoffs were an even more exclusive affair before that, as the World Series was the only playoff series until MLB added its two championship series in 1969. Twelve teams pulled off World Series sweeps between 1907 and 1966, vanquishing the other playoff team from the opposite leagues.

The currently undefeated Houston Astros, then, would be nearing uncharted waters even if baseball hadn’t expanded its postseason yet again this year. They won 106 games during the regular season and thus got to skip the league’s new wild-card round, starting their playoff run with a three-game divisional series sweep of the Seattle Mariners and an unceremonious four-game dispatching of Aaron Judge and the New York Yankees. A sweep of the Philadelphia Phillies in the World Series would make the Astros 11-0 in the playoffs, a postseason record unlike anything MLB has ever seen — though even winning a five- or six-game series would safely ensconce them among the most dominant teams ever playoffs. Their

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Music business scrambles to contain fallout from Kanye West controversy

The world’s largest music companies are scrambling to contain the fallout from a furore over anti-Semitic comments made by Kanye West, condemning the rapper’s remarks despite continuing to host his songs on their platforms.

Spotify chief executive Daniel Ek said on Tuesday that West’s recent comments were “awful”, but that his music does not violate the streaming service’s policies. “It’s up to his label, if they want to take action or not,” Ek told Reuters.

Universal Music and Sony Music, West’s longstanding partners, have similarly denounced his statements, which included a tweet on October 8 stating that he would go “death con 3 on Jewish people”.

The backlash comes as companies around the world have cut ties with West in the wake of his increasing provocative behavior. In the past few weeks, Adidas, Balenciaga, CAA and Gap have dropped their deals with the rapper following a series of offensive comments, while Instagram and Twitter have suspended his accounts.

Earlier this month, the rapper and fashion designer wore a shirt that said “White Lives Matter” and claimed during a recent podcast interview that Jewish people “own the Black voice”.

Ari Emanuel, chief executive of the entertainment and media company Endeavor, has been among those to call on big music companies to cease working with West, who is widely viewed as one of the most influential musicians in recent history.

While these groups have dropped their deals with the rapper, they continue to collect income from his music by keeping it available

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SK Hynix says industry woes ‘unprecedented’, to cut investment | Business and Economy

South Korean chipmaker’s third-quarter profit tumbles 60 percent amid a surge in inflation.

South Korean chipmaker SK Hynix says the memory chip market is facing an “unprecedented deterioration”, as its third-quarter profit tumbled 60 percent amid a surge in inflation.

“Supply will continue to exceed demand for the time being,” the world’s second-biggest memory chip maker said in a statement on Wednesday, pointing to a fall in notebook and smartphone shipments.

The company said it plans to reduce its investment next year by more than 50 percent on-year.

The profit fall comes as red-hot inflation has hurt demand for electronic devices and the memory chips that go in them.

SK Hynix’s operating profit fell to 1.66 trillion won ($1.16bn) in the July-September quarter, from 4.2 trillion ($2.93bn) won a year earlier. The result was below analysts’ expectations of a 1.87 trillion ($1.31bn) won profit, according to Refinitiv SmartEstimate.

Prices of DRAM chips, used in devices and servers, fell by about 20 percent in the third quarter from the second, SK Hynix said. Prices of NAND Flash chips that serve the data storage market fell more than 20 percent.

The lacklustre results echo bigger rival Samsung Electronics’ third-quarter earnings slump and United States peer Micron Technology Inc’s warnings of a sharp decline in PC and smartphone sales.

Chipmakers had enjoyed a strong post-pandemic demand surge until early this year, which created a shortage of certain chips and disrupted the production of vehicles and various electronic devices.

But chip demand has turned

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