Business Briefs – July 8, 2018

U.S.-China Trade War Elevates the Risks to the Global Economy

WASHINGTON (AP) – The trade war that has erupted between the U.S. and China carries a major risk of escalation that could weaken investment, depress spending, unsettle financial markets and slow the global economy. The opening shots were fired early Friday when the Trump administration imposed tariffs on billions of dollars’ worth of Chinese imports, and China promptly retaliated.

China Files Another Complaint To WTO Over U.S.

WASHINGTON (AP) – China says it filed a second complaint to the World Trade Organization over the United States’ move to impose tariffs on Chinese goods. The Commerce Ministry said in a brief statement on its website that Beijing submitted the WTO complaint Friday against measures taken by the U.S.

After Marathon Meeting, UK Leaders Endorse Brexit Trade Plan

LONDON (AP) – British Prime Minister Theresa May has corralled her Cabinet inside an English country house for a long, hot day that ended with an announcement that the divided government has finally agreed on a plan for a future free-trade deal with the European Union. The proposal aims to keep the U.K. and the bloc in a free-trade zone for goods, but not for services, which make up the bulk of the British economy.

Leandra English, Who Sued Trump, to Resign From CFPB

NEW YORK (AP) – Leandra English, who sued President Donald Trump for control of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as deputy director of the bureau, is planning to resign early next week.

Pruitt Leaves His Mark on Businesses — But Will It Last?

WASHINGTON (AP) – Environmental Protection Agency head Scott Pruitt tried to roll back rules affecting many industries. But whether he made lasting changes in the government’s regulation of business could be decided in the courts. Pruitt, who resigned from office, tried to reverse efforts to cut emissions from coal plants, kill tougher fuel-efficiency standards for vehicles, and suspend stricter rules on runoff from farms. The moves elicited protests and legal challenges by environmentalists and some states.

U.S. Trade Deficit Drops To $43.1B in May

WASHINGTON& (AP) – The U.S. trade deficit dropped in May to the lowest level in 19 months, as U.S. exports rose to a record level. But the trade gap between the United States and China increased sharply, underscoring the economic tensions between the world’s two biggest economies.

The Commerce Department said Friday that the May trade deficit — the difference between what America sells and what it buys in foreign markets — fell 6.6 percent to $43.1 billion. It was the smallest imbalance since October 2016.

Exports climbed 1.9 percent to a record $215.3 billion. Imports were up a smaller 0.4 percent to $258.4 billion.