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Quest Means Business
Israel: Heaviest Day Of Fighting Since Ground War Began; IDF Spokesman Clarifies Remarks In Civilian Casualties; Tuberville To Release Holds On Bulk Of Military Nominations; Israeli Regulators: No Suspicious Trading On Tel Aviv Stock Exchange Before October 7 Attacks; Harvard, Penn, MIT Presidents Testify Before Congress About Antisemitism; Antisemitic Attacks On The Rise In Italy; Meta And IBM Team Up On AI Alliance; "Grand Theft Auto VI" Trailer Hits 8 Million Views. Aired 3-4p ET
Aired December 05, 2023 - 15:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
RICHARD QUEST, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: There is an hour left to trade left on Wall Street. It is a version of trading.
The markets, take a look and see how we are standing at the moment. The markets are showing down 69 points. But what's interesting, they are down
throughout that whole section and have remained that sort of range. So we're not seeing big losses or we're not seeing dramatic moves.
Those are the markets. There's much happening in the world that I need to bring to your attention.
An IDF commander is describing today as the most intense fighting since Israel began its ground invasion. Meanwhile, the UN is warning there's
nowhere safe to go in Gaza.
A rally tonight in Rome to denounce antisemitism following an increase in the number of reported incidents.
And IBM and Meta spearheading a new alliance that's dedicated to the open development of AI. There's more to this than meets the eye.
Live from Dubai tonight, it's Tuesday, December the 5th. I'm Richard Quest in the UAE. And here, as elsewhere, I mean business.
Good evening, tonight, Israel's says it is in the heart of southern Gaza's largest city. An IDF official says the Khan Younis is being encircled by
Israeli troops. At the same time, operations continue in the northern part of Gaza.
Video from the central of the region indicate there have been multiple strikes in Deir al-Balah. One Israeli commander is describing today's
fighting as the most intense since the ground invasion -- the ground operation began. The Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, spoke during the
last hour and said Israel will fight Hamas wherever they are.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER (voice over): The fighters of the IDF will continue the war and will take apart Hamas everywhere in the
Gaza Strip. Yesterday, there was a tremendous fight. The earth trembled in Khan Younis, and Jabalya trembled. There's no place which we don't get to.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
QUEST: Jeremy Diamond is in Sderot. Though, Jeremy, I mean, it's now quite clear the Israelis are going to continue this come what may. And I guess --
I mean, they said that the northern part is nearly complete, so I'm guessing that in the southern -- they're going to do the same thing in the
JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that's right. And, you know, listen, Richard, we may have not even seen the most intense part of this
war. And it appears that we are perhaps on the brink of a very decisive battle in this war that has now stretched on for 60 days.
Israeli forces now having encircled the city of Khan Younis, which is the second largest city in the Gaza Strip. Israeli forces very quickly began
pushing into the southern part of the Gaza Strip soon after that temporary truce between Israel and Hamas expired early last Friday morning. And they
have been intensifying their ground operations, as well as their airstrikes in key areas of the southern Gaza Strip not only in Deir al-Balah, those
clips that you just showed of airstrikes in the central part of Gaza, but also in Khan Younis, as well as Rafah.
And the Israeli military says that it is targeting Hamas, that it is going after Yahya Sinwar, the group's leader in the Gaza Strip, who they believe
may be ensconced in the southern part of Gaza. But what is also clear is that civilians are once again bearing the brunt of far too many casualties.
We've seen the images of civilians emerging from the rubble wounded and killed, in some cases, including in those strikes today in Deir al-Balah.
But also, there are the questions about the feasibility of Israeli efforts to urge those civilians in Khan Younis and east of Khan Younis to begin
evacuating to the city of Rafah further south.
Hundreds of thousands of people lived in the areas where Israeli military officials have been directing evacuations, telling them to go to Rafah. But
in Rafah already, we know that shelters manned by the United Nations and other humanitarian agencies are already overcrowded.
And tonight, the head of the Gaza operations for the United Nations Refugee Agency says that that area of Rafah simply cannot handle the burden of
hundreds of thousands more people going to already overcrowded shelters, overcrowded water management systems, sanitation systems and, of course,
hospital services as well. So a very dicey humanitarian situation in Gaza that is likely to only get worse.
And meanwhile, the operations in the northern part of the Gaza Strip very much continuing behind me, Richard. We have been hearing artillery, as well
as airstrikes throughout the evening.
QUEST: And there's also a rather strange comment made over the last few hours by an Israeli. In fact, he says that, you know, that it was a
positive that the ratio of civilians to Hamas was to two to one or however it was put, sort of suggesting that if they were going to prosecute this
war in an urban environment, then they've done as best they can to minimize the number of civilian casualties.
DIAMOND: Yes, that's right, Richard. That was Jonathan Conricus, who is a reserved military spokesman for the Israel Defense Forces. And he was
responding to a report in the Agence France-Presse, which was effectively saying that, according to the Israeli military, two civilians have been
killed for everyone Hamas fighter.
He backed away from actually confirming that report. But what he did say was that, effectively, it would be a great ratio if indeed it was true,
saying that it was far better than what was seen in some US battles in Iraq, for example, which we cannot confirm at this time. But it does point
to the acceptance in Israeli military circles of the numbers of civilian casualties that we are seeing in Gaza. And it's certainly at odds with the
kind of pressure that we've been seeing from the United States.
As we've heard from US officials, making clear to the Israeli military that they cannot prosecute the war in the south the same way they have in the
north, that the numbers of civilian casualties must be lower. And we've seen the Israeli military move in that direction with this map of
evacuation orders. Ordering evacuations is a big focus on that, but we are also seeing how unfeasible many of those evacuation orders also are. And as
of yet, we've yet to see a real change in the way in which the Israeli military is prosecuting this war.
QUEST: Jeremy, thank you, in Sderot in Israel. I'm grateful. Thank you, sir.
The Norwegian Refugee Council says it's been forced to halt maybe all aid operations in Gaza. The head of the organization said the polarizing of
Gaza ranks amongst the worst assault in the civilian population in our time and age.
Now, CNN's Ben Wedeman reports weeks of bombardment have led to chaos and a fundamental breakdown of civil order.
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Desperate times call for desperate measures. And in Gaza, if that means looting the
local bakery destroyed overnight by an Israeli airstrike, so be it.
(IKRAM AL-RAI speaking in foreign language.)
WEDEMAN (voice over): "Look at the people," says Ikram Al-Rai, "They're doing this out of hunger." It was the Baraka Bakery. Baraka is Arabic for
blessing, but now Gaza is under the curse of a war. It was the last functioning bakery in Deir al-Balah.
(IBRAHIM DABOUR speaking in foreign language.)
WEDEMAN (voice over): People's basic needs, striking it is a kind of terrorism. Once the sun came up Monday, people of all ages descended upon
the bakery, taking away bags of flour, cooking oil, scraps of wood to use for cooking and heating, and just about anything else they could carry
away. This man describes it in one word, "chaos."
The World Food Programme's Abeer Etefa warns that people of Gaza are reaching the breaking point.
ABEER ETEFA, WORLD FOOD PROGRAMME'S SENIOR SPOKESWOMAN: (Inaudible) you have civil order breaking down completely because people are becoming
desperate, hopeless, hungry by the moment. This is, of course, bound to happen.
WEDEMAN (voice over): And with Israeli ground forces now operating in southern Gaza, the hundreds of thousands who fled the north in search of
safety are now, even more than before, in the line of fire. Gaza, after almost two months of war, has come to this.
Ben Wedeman, CNN, Jerusalem.
QUEST: The pentagon says it will soon be unable to sustain its level of support to Ukraine without more funding from Congress.
Ukraine's President Zelenskyy was meant to speak directly to US lawmakers today on the need for more aid. According to the Senate Majority Leader
Chuck Schumer, the video call was canceled as a -- because of a last-minute matter for senators, planning to take up a bill on Wednesday that includes
$61 billion for keep. Some Republicans are linking that money to funding for the US border security.
Stephen Collinson is in Washington. Now, let's not mince words here, Stephen. Did Zelenskyy have a diplomatic headache that he decided to not
speak to Congress at this point? Was it inopportune or not the best moment?
STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN POLITICS SENIOR REPORTER: I can understand if that was the case in the House, where there are many pro-Trump -- pro-Donald
Trump lawmakers who are philosophically against more aid of Ukraine, it doesn't seem to make a lot of sense in the Senate where, although there was
an impasse about how exactly to push this aid forward because of a coinciding route over immigration.
There is a lot of Republican support, as well as Democratic support in the Senate for pushing aid forward. But I think what we're seeing for the first
time and the most serious time really are serious doubts about the US capacity to manipulate its own political problems in order to get that aid
through to Ukraine. And this is something that's really, you know -- the mess in Washington now, Israeli affecting America's capacity to wield
leadership in the Ukraine war, in the west, and more broadly across the globe here.
QUEST: Now, related to this, an interesting side note. The Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville says he'll release his hold on military
promotions. This is all about Senate rules that's allowed one senator to stop hundreds of promotions in the military. He says he'll block a smaller
number of woke nominees after evaluating their backgrounds.
Now, bearing in mind, he's been doing this for some months over the military's reproductive rights policies, what changed his mind? Let's face
it. There have been many people putting pressure. Why now?
COLLINSON: I think the pressure just became absolutely unbearable. Even Republicans inside the Senate were pretty angry about this because they
were hearing a lot from the military about just how painful this was in terms of military readiness. What Tuberville was trying to do was protest
Pentagon policies that actually paid expenses for servicemembers who had to get fertility treatment or abortion, and they had to travel together.
On the border front, this it's very much like the Ukraine situation. It's a single senator, in this case, or a group of House members in the Ukraine
case. So they're using their power to stop the governance in Washington to frustrate the Biden administration's plans both at home and abroad.
Before, you know, military -- the military was always sacred. Foreign policy was supposed to be immune from the ideological divisions back in
Washington. That is no longer the case. And I think a lot of it is to do with the transformation of the Republican Party in Trump's image -- this
Make America Great Again theme that Trump has perpetuated, which is becoming more and more powerful again because of the possibility that he
might end up back in the White House.
And there are many members of the modern Republican Party who support Trump, who are quite happy if the government doesn't work, if the Congress
isn't able to fund the US foreign policies they don't agree with like Ukraine aid or they will use their power to gum up the government to
advance their own social policies like opposition to abortion.
So I think this is -- while these are discreet issues, I think they tell us a lot about where American politics is, and where it's going to be going in
the next year or so.
QUEST: And you'll be there to help us understand it. And I'm grateful. Stephen Collinson in Washington .
COLLINSON: Thank you.
QUEST: . for us tonight.
In a moment, two US professors say there was a significant and unusual spike in short selling of Israeli securities before that mass attack in
October. Israel's security authority is now rejecting those findings. We'll discuss it after the break.
QUEST: In the last few hours, Israel's securities regulator has rejected the suggestion there was suspicious trading in the country's stocks before
the October 7th attacks. Now, earlier this week, a study said there was a significant and unusual spike in short selling of Israeli securities five
days before the war broke out. The research suggested some traders anticipated and profited from Hamas's attacks in Israel.
Now the regulator says that it's investigated the relevant time period and did not find any abnormal trading within Israel's stock exchanges, making
clear, of course, that it can only talk about what happened within Israel exchanges, not, say, for example, on ETFs on other exchange.
Matt Egan's with me. Matt, this is very fascinating because the report -- the original report was clear. They saw abnormal spikes not only in global
ETFs on -- for Israel, but also in individual stocks. And now the regulator is saying, nope, we don't see it here.
MATT EGAN, CNN REPORTER: Yes, Richard, the whole story is fascinating. I mean, it reads almost like something out of a spy thriller. Now, we have a
bit of a plot twist, right? The regulator in Israel is basically saying there's nothing to see here. There's no suspicious trading on our exchange.
But, Richard, I think that the really important part here is that the Israeli regulators, they're acknowledging that they only reviewed trading
activity that took place in Tel Aviv on the Israeli stock exchange. And what's important to remember is that this research from Columbia and NYU,
it goes beyond that. And actually, the central focus was on a bet made against an Israeli ETF, the MSCI Israel ETF.
That fund actually trades right here in New York, on the New York Stock Exchange. And again, that is not something that the Israeli regulators were
Now, the research also examined short bets against individual stocks, individual Israeli companies.
EGAN: Some of them traded in Tel Aviv, and Israeli regulators saying we didn't see any increase in short activity. We actually saw a decrease in
the days before October 7th. But again .
QUEST: Right. So .
EGAN: . some of this research actually looks at stocks that traded on the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq. So I do think that the statement
from the regulator in Israel, it raises some questions, it casts some doubt on the research, but it doesn't completely undermine it.
QUEST: Well, well, yes, but that -- I'm just thinking from the report. Just before the attack, short selling of Israeli securities on the Tel Aviv
Stock Exchange increased dramatically, which is what you were just -- you know, that is the report's allegation.
So how -- I mean, what I can't understand is that's a fact. It's either did or t didn't. And I can't understand how the report authors say it did and
that the regulators says, well, (inaudible). No, nothing to see here. Keep moving, keep moving.
EGAN: Yes, Richard. I was sort of befuddled by that as well because the research is clear in laying out this case that they're saying, as a fact,
that there was a spike in short activity. The regulator is saying not only was there not a spike in activity in these Israeli securities that traded
in Tel Aviv. But they actually saw a decrease in short activity. So that's one that's hard to square.
We do have to remember this is preliminary research. It is not peer- reviewed.
EGAN: And so it's not surprising to hear some pushback. I don't know what the answer is. I think that regulators in the US .
QUEST: Yes, yes.
EGAN: . are going to have to dig into this as well, Richard, because this is something that the SEC and FINRA, and perhaps even the Treasury
Department is going to want to look into to try to get to the bottom of it.
QUEST: I was just about -- I was going to ask you, will we ever find out what really happened? I'm starting to doubt it.
Matt Egan, I'm grateful. Thank you, sir.
In Washington, the president of the top universities -- Harvard, Penn, and MIT -- are testifying in a congressional hearing over alleged antisemitism
on their campuses. The president of Harvard said tensions there have risen since the war broke out between Israel and Hamas.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLAUDINE GAY, PRESIDENT, HARVARD UNIVERSITY: During these difficult days, I have felt the bonds of our community strain. In response, I have sought to
confront hate while preserving free expression.
The free exchange of ideas is the foundation upon which Harvard is built. And safety and well-being are the prerequisites for engagement in our
community. Without both of these things, our teaching and research mission founder.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
QUEST: Rene Marsh is with me. I've been talking to several educators and so very senior people of British universities as well. They say the pressure
that the university management is on now is incredible from both sides.
RENE MARSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I mean, this was definitely one of those situations where they were under the fire. At times, it felt like
this was, like, a public shaming for these three university presidents, particularly, when you heard the opening statements from the chairwoman of
this committee, Virginia Foxx, really tough words for them and tough questions about how they responded in the direct aftermath of many of these
antisemitic incidents that happened on their campuses.
Of course, we've seen an explosion of these sort of incidents following that October 7th attack. And many of these universities, including these
three who are on Capitol Hill today, have been criticized for not coming out fast enough to condemn some of the rhetoric that we have seen on these
campuses and some of these demonstrations.
I want you to listen to this very tense exchange between one lawmaker and the president of University of Pennsylvania, where they're directly talking
to her about some controversial speakers that they had on the campus. Specifically, they're asking about Roger Waters of Pink Floyd who has been
seen as antisemitic, asking direct questions about the decision to bring him to speak on campus. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JIM BANKS, (R) INDIANA REPRESENTATIVE: Why in the world would you host someone like that on your college campus to speak at the so-called
Palestinian Rights Literature Festival?
ELIZABETH MAGILL, PRESIDENT, UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA: I appreciate the opportunity to discuss this. Antisemitism has no place at Penn.
BANKS: Why would you invite -- why did you invite Roger Waters? What did you think you would get out of him?
MAGILL: Antisemitism has no place at Penn.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MARSH: And she followed up with that by saying that she has called out many of the people speaking at that particular event. But that's just a flavor
of some of the top questions that these university presidents face today. Many of them though taking a much more direct stance and saying, without
any hesitation, that they condemn Hamas, they condemn the attacks, they condemn antisemitism on campus. So no delays in response there and just
coming out and saying that they condemn this sort of actions and rhetoric.
They also mapped out for lawmakers exactly what steps that they plan on taking to help students feel safe. And that includes increasing security on
QUEST: Rene Marsh, in Washington, I'm grateful. Thank you.
And to bring you up-to-date on events in Europe on this issue, Italy is holding a rally against capital -- in its capital against antisemitism as
the attacks against the Jewish community are increasing across Italy. Many people are holding Israeli flags in the really.
Barbie Nadeau is in Rome, giving us this dispatch.
(CROWD rallying in Italy).
BARBIE LATZA NADEAU, CNN CONTRIBUTOR (voice over): The winds of war are fanning the flames of a new wave of antisemitism in Italy. Ever since
Israel responded to the attack by Hamas on October 7th, the frequency of antisemitic attacks across Italy has increased, according to the National
Commission of the Fight Against Antisemitism.
Cobblestones marking Jewish people who are deported to concentration camps have been vandalized in Rome. An antisemitic graffiti has appeared in
Genoa, Ravenna, Milan, Florence, and elsewhere.
Here, in the Jewish ghetto in Rome, thousands of Jewish people were taken away to concentration camps 80 years ago. Today, the commission says
security is at an all-time high.
Marco Misano gives tours of Jewish history in Rome. He has one son living in Israel and another going to the Jewish school here.
MARCO MISANO, JEWISH ROME TOUR GUIDE: Now, I think this is my, of course, personal opinion that we always had that antisemitism was slipping.
When the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians restart after October 7th, wake up all of these people. And it's just an excuse because you can
be against the Israeli politicians. But why to making it this antisemitic things against the Jews in Rome, against the Jews in Paris, in London?
NADEAU (voice over): Here in Italy, the scars of the holocaust are still there.
(LILIANA SEGRE speaking in foreign language.)
NADEAU (voice over): Liliana Segre is a 93-year-old Holocaust survivor, who is deported to Auschwitz concentration camp when she was 13 years old.
She's the only one of her family who survived.
She recently told Italian parliament that she's worried about indifference to antisemitism today. Authorities are worried, too.
(GUISEPPE PECORARO speaking in foreign language.)
GUISEPPE PECORARO, NATIONAL COORDINATOR FOR THE FIGHT AGAINST ANTISEMITISM (through translator): The indifference is because when people aren't
interested, they are afraid to intervene. The worst thing is those who don't care.
NADEAU (voice over): Misano says he sees many Jewish people now hiding the fact that they're Jewish, wearing a baseball cap over the yarmulke or
covering the logo of the Jewish school uniform.
MISANO: I wear the yarmulke. I keep wearing when I do the tour because the time that you start to wear something to cover, they won. We have a Jewish
school on the ghetto with 950 kids. We have more police. We keep living.
NADEAU (voice over): Barbie Latza Nadeau, CNN, Rome.
QUEST: IBM and Meta are teaming up to form an AI alliance. Head of Research at IBM joins me afterwards. There he is.
The future of AI depends on open innovation. Keep the walls open. Don't go to the barricades. We'll talk about what it means in a moment. QUEST MEANS
QUEST: Meta and IBM have teamed up to launch an AI Alliance. They brought together more than 50 AI companies and research bodies. They are the
biggies, if you will.
It includes the likes of Intel, Dell, Oracle, NASA, not Microsoft. At least, I could not see Microsoft. That might explain something, of course,
they are a heavy investor in OpenAI. My next guest, head of research at IBM, said the group came together because it is word they've been
unsatisfied with public discussions around AI.
They want to focus on open source, which they believe people can share technologies and makes it all a lot more simple and safe. Dario Gil is
IBM'S senior vice president, head of research, with me from New York.
All right, what does this alliance do besides be one big talking shop?
DARIO GIL, IBM SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT: First of all, thank you for being here. What it is is a community of creators and developers, educators,
adopters of AI representing 50 plus institutions all over the world that collectively amassed over $80 billion in R&D a year.
They educate over 400,000 students a year and employ over 1 million people all over the world. And for all institutions, AI is a top priority and what
it reflects is a desire to come together, to shape the future of AI and of trust and responsibility --
GIL: -- science and open innovation.
But how does that differ between what the others are doing?
ChatGPT, Microsoft and a whole host of other companies that are I supposed arguably closed source.
Are they the baddies?
GIL: Well, no, I will let them speak for themselves. But what this represents obviously is a different approaches in how you can develop
technology. And we've seen in the past similar parallels.
For example, the internet was built with open technologies. If you look at Linux and the role of operating systems, enterprise all over the world,
that was built in open source. And what we are saying here is that the future of AI's definitively going to be driven by open innovation.
So that's what it speaks of. It's just a way of doing work in ways that actually we can better represent the diversity, the institutional diversity
all over the world and create opportunities that are more diverse than before.
QUEST: But are we at risk of (INAUDIBLE) -- two sides in this. I'm being obviously provocative when I say baddies and goodies. But it doesn't really
matter which side you want is on. There are two sides of the way forward.
And I think that the one thing that everybody agrees on, AI is going to be bigger and have more effect than any of us can probably even concede. And
the last thing we want is a disagreement of this scale.
GIL: What I would highlight instead, Richard, is look at the degree of consensus at the alliance I represent.
GIL: It's actually not very common to be able to bring together that many world-leading universities, businesses, start-ups, nonprofits, science
agencies. And what that tells you is that there is a fantastic level of agreement on actually shaping and creating the future of AI in this
fashion, through open science and open innovation.
So to me, this is beyond my wildest imagination when we started this process, that these many institutions would come together for this purpose.
QUEST: Do you think that -- I mean, the problem, of course, with the alliance is and all of the legitimate AI is that you can all follow the
rules. And it is the bad actors that don't, whether state owned or otherwise.
And the difficulties -- and I've read numerous reports about this -- how you get global consensus. Yes, the alliances are good, a very important
But it's the recalcitrant and the bad actors that you have to be worried about.
GIL: Well, that's fair enough. And of course but best way to mitigate it is to either get enough good actors that are trying to do the right thing
because when we do that, then we can check things when they go wrong, things that we need to improve.
And you have more eyes, more resources, more talent to address them.
QUEST: I want you to talk about quantum computing and all of the latest developments that you have been doing in quantum.
Bearing in mind, you can write my knowledge of computer and coding on the - - I won't say postage stamp because you'd still have room to write a long essay. The reality is that you believe we are on the break, the cusp,
qubits of quantum.
GIL: Yes, look if we look at the future of computing, it is undoubtedly going to be driven by artificial intelligence and quantum computing. The
second thing that I would highlight Richard, is that this is the most exciting time in competing probably since the 1940s when the first digital
computer was created in Bletchley Park.
Or the transistor right in the late '50s. And what quantum represents is nothing less than reimagining the nature of information. And we have
abandoning the idea, the 0, the 1 -- the bit -- and creating -- we are creating this incredible machines as particle computers that allow you to
solve problems that you could not do before with the classical approaches.
QUEST: Can I come and visit you?
If we come up there and visit you will, you show me around and give me -- and help me understand it?
GIL: I would love to do that. In fact, we just unveiled on Sunday is I think the system, too, which is the largest quantum computer in the world
of its kind and the highest performing one. And I would love to see you. It is brand new, shiny, it's colder than outer space. And we would love to
QUEST: Looking forward to that, excellent. Thank, you sir. Very grateful.
The trailer of "Grand Theft Auto VI" has 80 million views on YouTube in less than 24 hours. It's one of the most anticipated games in history, set
for release in two years.
Rockstar Games will be pleased if it sells like anything of its predecessors. The "Grand Theft Auto" franchise is one of the world's most
lucrative. More than $8 billion since the last came out in 2013.
And "Grand Theft Auto VI" alone made more money than any film released. Clare Duffy is in New York.
At this point, transparency requires me to tell you I have not played them. But I am always gobsmacked by the sheer size of users, dollar made.
I mean was this an official leak?
A sort of leaked leak?
Or was it a real leak?
CLARE DUFFY, CNN BUSINESS WRITER: It's a good question. On the one hand, it's not a good look for Rockstar Games, the maker of "Grand Theft Auto."
They've struggled with leaks before. Last, year there was unreleased game footage that was leaked as part of what the company called "a network
I will note the company's stock dipped after last night's leak. Shares were down about 1 percent today. But in some ways this leak and the coverage
around the leak adds to the hype cycle.
There's already astronomical interest in this next installment of "Grand Theft Auto." But I don't know if we would be talking about it if it hadn't
leaked 12 hours in advance and the trailer had gone up as planned this morning, Richard.
QUEST: Oh, I don't know. Yes, that's a good question. What I still just find fascinating is the size and scale. It's a bit like online gaming,
whether they all come together and everyone games together and people spend hours and fortunes watching other people play games.
DUFFY: It is a huge business. I was reminded of one of the stories that you and I had been talking about a lot this year. Microsoft, $69 billion
acquisition of Activision Blizzard.
DUFFY: The company fought with regulators to close. It's another reminder, part of the benefit of that acquisition for Microsoft, is some of these
major studio titles that they want to have on their game services.
It is just another reminder of how significant this gaming business really is.
QUEST: When you look at things like Twitch, that have millions of people at any one time, the market values these things very highly. And yet it is the
staying power to keep doing it. The digital world is replete with something that was brilliant yesterday and gone tomorrow. So for "Grand Theft Auto"
to still be doing it now, it's a real achievement.
DUFFY: It is. It has a lot of staying power. One of the highlights from this trailer yesterday is that "GTA VI" will have the franchise's first
ever female protagonist, which is certainly something for people to look forward to.
It is interesting. You and I Richard, on TV right now, are competing with the likes of Twitch, as well as streaming services, social media platforms,
TikTok. All of these platforms are offering people entertainment. And video games is a huge part of that.
QUEST: Have you played "Grand Theft Auto"?
DUFFY: I can't say I've played in many years. I think I have played one of the older iterations. But I think with the new female protagonist, I might
have to play.
QUEST: Are you up for a challenge?
DUFFY: Let's do it. I think we should do it.
QUEST: Once we've both practiced for six months and we've gotten half decent so we didn't embarrass ourselves. Thank, you Clare Duffy in New
That is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. Top of the hour together, you and I dash to the closing bell. We will have "CONNECTING AFRICA" coming up next. The news
QUEST: The closing bell, take a look at the way the markets have gone. Bitcoin is back above $43,000. The last time it was worth this much was in
April of last year. Bitcoin PETF will be next. The Dow is set to finish, you can see the numbers, 50 or so points low.
It's been down all the session, about 100, give or take. The Nasdaq is also maybe just a bit higher. The S&P is flat. The Dow components, that is the
way they are looking, if you get a glimpse of them before we get to the closing bell.
And that is our closing bell tonight, Apple at the top.
I'm Richard Quest. Whatever you're up to in the hours ahead, I hope it's profitable.