U.S. stock index futures edged higher early Friday, putting the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 within striking distance of all-time highs. The Dow was up by 0.2 percent, while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq rose by 0.3 percent. Markets are getting a lift from positive signs ahead of October talks between the U.S. and China on ending their trade war. On Thursday, the U.S. welcomed Beijing’s decision to resume purchases of U.S. farm goods. A day earlier, President Trump said he would delay increasing tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods from Oct. 1 to Oct. 15 in a “gesture of goodwill.” Trump also said he would consider an interim trade deal, although he would prefer a full agreement. [CNBC]
Old Navy said Thursday it would open 800 new stores, a major expansion just seven months after its parent company, the Gap, announced it was spinning off its lower-priced retail chain. “We’ll almost double our fleet to 2,000 stores in North America, predominantly in under-served small markets,” Old Navy CEO Sonia Syngal said at an investor conference. Old Navy, which was launched in 1994, has reached $8 billion in annual sales and is shooting for $10 billion, Syngal said. “We’re an $8 billion start-up,” Syngal said. “The sky’s the limit.” Old Navy’s expansion plans came in a year in which other retailers have announced more than 8,200 store closings in the U.S. [CNN]
The federal deficit rose to nearly $1.07 trillion in August, exceeding the trillion-dollar level for the first time in seven years, the Treasury Department said Thursday. The shortfall for August alone was more than $214 billion. The total is up by 19 percent over the same point in 2018, with one month left in the fiscal year. In 2018, the deficit for the full year was $898 billion. President Trump campaigned promising to eliminate the deficit, saying economic growth would pay for his tax cuts and spending plans. Revenue increased in 2019 to roughly $280 billion per month, but spending rose, too. The national debt has increased by 13 percent under Trump to $22.5 trillion. [CNBC, CNN]
The Trump administration on Thursday announced that it would roll back an Obama-era clean water regulation that limited the use of polluting chemicals near streams and wetlands. The Waters of the United States rule was the latest in a series of environmental regulations that the Trump administration has weakened or eliminated, The New York Times noted. Most of the changes have targeted regulations on fossil fuel pollution, including coal-fired power plants and automobile emissions. The Environmental Protection Agency change, narrowing the definition of protected waters, will give conservative states that consider the Clean Water Act unfair to farmers and industry “an opportunity to really drive a stake through the heart of federal water protection,” said Patrick Parenteau, a professor of environmental law at the University of Vermont. [The New York Times]
China is exempting U.S. soybeans and pork from tariff hikes in its trade war with the U.S., China’s Xinhua News Agency reported Friday, citing unidentified official sources. The news marked the latest in a series of concessions both sides have described as goodwill gestures ahead of October trade talks between the world’s two largest economies. The Chinese commerce and finance ministries did not immediately comment on the report on Friday, which is a national holiday in China. Beijing imposed 25 percent tariffs on American farm goods and ordered a halt to soybean imports after President Trump raised tariffs on Chinese imports because he said China’s trade practices were unfair to the U.S. [The Associated Press]
President Trump wasn’t wrong to put Anthony Scaramucci on his enemies list.
It’s no secret that never-Trump Republican Bill Kristol would like to see someone else at the top of the GOP’s presidential ticket. Now, he’s adding the former White House communications director turned anti-Trumper to his battalion, confirming they’ve discussed the matter with a texted “yup” to CNBC.
Kristol’s long neoconservative history includes founding the now-defunct Weekly Standard magazine and working for a handful of past Republican presidents. But he’s dead-set on ensuring Trump has no chance to be reelected in 2020, preferably by getting another Republican to primary the current president. Scaramucci, meanwhile, announced last week he’s officially dumping Trump, apparently prompting Kristol to give him a call. Kristol and Scaramucci have “chatted” about ousting Trump, but “working with him would be an exaggeration,” Kristol told CNBC.
It’s an odd potential partnership for Kristol, who has publicly criticized Scaramucci in the past. Still, Scaramucci has retained his spot in Trump’s mind well beyond his 11-day White House tenure, with Trump firing a tweet storm at his former aide just last week. Yet Scaramucci recently said he received support from current White House staffers, as well as current and former elected officials, after publicly opposing Trump. Kristol, it seems, could be trying to tap into the Scaramucci network.
Read more at CNBC.
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images The NBA Western Conference Finals tip off Tuesday night when the defending champion Golden State Warriors take on the Portland Trail Blazers. The Eastern Conference follows suit on Wednesday evening with the Milwaukee Bucks taking on the Toronto Raptors. This stage of the game is old hat for the Warriors, who are […]
Mike Coppola/Getty Images Cindy McCain is passionate about issues, not politics, and doesn’t plan on leading any resistance against President Trump, she told The Washington Post in an interview published Thursday. The widow of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who died last year of brain cancer, reflected on Trump’s treatment of her husband; he mocked McCain’s […]
SAUL LOEB / Getty Images Former White House Chief of Staff John Kelly can now count on a second line of income. In addition to his attempt at scoring paid speaking gigs, Kelly has now joined the board of Caliburn International, the company has confirmed to CBS News. Caliburn is the parent company of Comprehensive […]
Mark Wilson/Getty Images When Michael Cohen testifies in front of the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday, he will discuss what it was like working for President Trump for more than a decade, revealing that he witnessed “lies, racism, and cheating” by Trump, a person familiar with the matter told The Wall Street Journal Tuesday. Cohen, […]
iStock Thousands of patients were improperly prescribed a highly potent and restricted class of fentanyl, an opioid 100 times more powerful than morphine, between 2012 and 2017, reports CNN. A paper published by the Journal of the American Medical Association, which was based on nearly 5,000 pages of Food and Drug Administration reports and other […]
Antony Nettle / Alamy Stock Photo If you’re flying east today, you’re in a whole lot of luck: The jet stream, that funny little channel of high-altitude air that flows over the United States and northern Atlantic, is moving at unheard-of speeds, delivering commercial jets to their destinations nearly an hour ahead of schedule, The […]
5:25p.m. Justin Sullivan / Getty Images PayPal is making it harder for anti-fascist and far-right groups to raise money online by canceling their accounts, The Verge reported Friday. PayPal has banned Gavin McInnes, who founded a far-right group of self-described “western chauvinists,” called the Proud Boys. The company also dumped accounts for Atlanta Antifa, Antifa […]
8:30a.m. Mark Wilson/Getty Images A federal judge on Friday denied a request from the Justice Department to prevent collection of evidence in a lawsuit alleging President Trump has violated the Constitution’s emoluments clause by maintaining a financial interest in his Washington, D.C., hotel. The provision bans the president from accepting gifts from foreign heads of […]