Business Briefs – July 2, 2018

EU Warns Trump: Auto Tariffs Could Lead to $300B Retaliation

BRUSSELS (AP) – The EU on Monday slammed the Trump administration for considering tariffs on auto imports, saying they could lead to global retaliation against some $300 billion in U.S. goods, amid fresh signs of a looming trade war. European Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas said the U.S. investigation into the possibility of auto tariffs “lacks legitimacy, factual basis and violates international trade rules,” just like last month’s U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

U.S. Factories Register Faster-Than-Expected Growth in June

WASHINGTON (AP) – American factories expanded at an unexpectedly fast pace in June, another sign of strength for U.S. industry. But U.S. manufacturing will have to contend in coming months with uncertainty over trade and a strengthening dollar. The Institute for Supply Management, a trade group of purchase managers, says its manufacturing index rose last month to 60.2. That’s the highest level since February and up from 58.7 in May.

Tesla Makes 5,000 Model 3s Per Week, But Can It Continue?

DETROIT (AP) – Tesla Inc. made 5,031 lower-priced Model 3 electric cars during the last week of June, surpassing its often-missed goal of 5,000 per week. But the company still only managed to crank out an average of 2,198 per week for the quarter. Tesla reported making 28,578 Model 3s from April through June, according to its quarterly production release. Critics wonder whether it can keep up the pace that it achieved in those last seven days.

California High Court: Yelp Can’t Be Ordered to Remove Posts

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – A divided California Supreme Court has ruled that online review site Yelp.com cannot be ordered to remove posts against a San Francisco law firm that a judge had determined were defamatory. The 4-3 ruling on Monday came in a closely watched case that internet companies warned could be used to silence all types of online speech.

Trump: WTO Needs to Change Ways or U.S. Will Do ‘Something’

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump is warning the World Trade Organization that if the United States isn’t treated “properly, we will be doing something.”

The president is again denying plans to withdraw the U.S. from the WTO but tells reporters in the Oval Office that the trade organization needs to change its ways.

Mr. Trump has struck U.S. allies with tough tariffs and is planning to impose tough trade penalties on China later this week.

He says the WTO has treated the U.S. “very badly and I hope they change their ways.” He says he’s not “planning anything now” but if the WTO doesn’t treat the U.S. properly, “we will be doing something.”

Trump did not elaborate. He spoke during a White House meeting with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte.

Supermarket Chains Tesco, Carrefour Form Strategic Alliance

LONDON (AP) – British supermarket chain Tesco and France’s Carrefour are creating a strategic alliance to give them more clout with global suppliers.

The companies said in a statement Monday that the three-year deal will cover their relationship with suppliers and include joint purchasing of the stores’ own-brand goods.

They say the alliance will help both parties “improve the quality and choice of products available” and enhance competitiveness.

The deal comes as retailers adjust to intense pressure from internet rivals as more people shop online through sites like Amazon.