U.S. Business Inventories Rise In Line With Estimates In July
Business inventories increased in line with economist estimates in the month of July, the Commerce Department revealed in a report released on Thursday.
The report said business inventories rose by 0.5 percent in July after climbing by an upwardly revised 0.9 percent in June.
Economists had expected business inventories to rise by 0.5 percent compared to the 0.8 percent increase originally reported for the previous month.
Wholesale and manufacturing inventories climbed by 0.6 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively, while retail inventories rose by 0.4 percent.
The Commerce Department said business sales also increased by 0.5 percent in July after jumping by 1.6 percent in June.
Wholesale and manufacturing sales surged by 2.0 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively, more than offsetting a 2.2 percent slump in retail sales.
With inventories and sales both rising, the total business inventories/sales ratio came in at 1.25 in July, unchanged from the previous month.
“Inventories will stay scant relative to sales for the rest of 2021,” said Oren Klachkin, Lead U.S. Economist at Oxford Economics. “Strong demand and supply side pressures in the form of high input prices, logistical bottlenecks, hiring constraints, and raw material shortages will drag on inventory restocking efforts.”
He added, “We expect to see a more constructive environment for inventory growth next year as supply chain pressures ease and sales return to more normal and predictable patterns.”
Opinion | The Extremely Weird Politics of Covid
By Ross Douthat
Ex-House Speaker Settles Child Sexual Abuse Payments Suit
YORKVILLE, Ill. (AP) — Once powerful former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert and a man who accused him of child sexual abuse reached a tentative out-of-court settlement Wednesday over Hastert’s refusal to pay $1.8 million in exchange for the man’s silence, lawyers for both men said.
The lawyers would not release details of the settlement in the case, which was set to go to trial next week in an Illinois court.
The man has been referred to only as James Doe in court papers since the breach of contract lawsuit was filed in 2016. He had said Hastert paid him only about half of the promised $3.5 million in hush money.
Federal prosecutors said during a related criminal case that sent Hastert to prison for over a year that the agreement was voluntarily entered into and that the victim never sought to blackmail the Illinois Republican that he’d go public about the abuse. It happened when the victim was a high school wrestler and the now 79-year-old Hastert was his coach.
Hastert paid $1.7 million over four years but stopped the payments after the FBI questioned him in 2014 about illegally concealing huge cash withdraws from his bank. After Hastert pleaded guilty to a banking charge and was sentenced in 2016, the victim sued for breach of contract to force Hastert to pay the outstanding $1.8 million.
Need help? Visit RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Online Hotline or the National Sexual Violence Resource Center’s website.
Canada Votes In Premature Federal Election
Canadians went to the polling booths Monday for a premature federal election as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sought a third term in office two years ahead of schedule.
The first results will be available shortly after 7 p.m. ET, according to Election Canada.
During the campaign, the liberal prime minister reportedly struggled to explain why he opted an early election amidst the pandemic, forcing people to vote for the second time in two years.
Trudeau, who has been leading a minority government since October 2019, is expected to win a majority of seats in the House of Commons, opinion polls indicate.
However, he is facing stiff resistance from the main opposition center-right party, led by new Conservative leader Erin O’Toole.
With around 30 percent support predicted for both the parties in national polls, the difference between the two can be minimal, which again paves the way for another minority government.
K3 Business Technology Group Sells Non-core Sage Business For 1.68 Mln Pounds
K3 Business Technology Group, (KBT.L) which provides mission-critical software and cloud solutions, on Monday announced the sale of the business and assets of its non-core Sage Business to Pinnacle Computing for 1.68 million pounds. The consideration is subject to a downward adjustment of circa 0.2 million pounds in respect of any restructuring costs that Pinnacle may undertake immediately following the completion of the deal.
The deal is expected to be completed in early October subject to consultative process in respect of transfer of employees between the two companies.
The pre-tax profit of approximately 1.6 million pounds, would be accounted for as an exceptional contribution to trading results in the current financial year ending 30 November.
The deal is in line with the company’s strategy of focusing resources on key higher-margin products and markets, and follows the sale of other non-core businesses.
Shares of KBT.L are currently trading at 177.19 pounds, up 0.69 pounds or 0.39 percent from previous close.
Donald Trump Snapped ‘I’m F**king Tired’ After Pollster’s 2020 Warning, New Book Claims
Donald Trump did not take kindly to a warning from GOP pollster Tony Fabrizio in the months before the 2020 election, Washington Post journalists Bob Woodward and Robert Costa write in their upcoming book “Peril.”
When Fabrizio told Trump following his failed July 2020 comeback rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, that voters were “fatigued,” “tired of the chaos” and “tired of the tumult” of his administration, Trump reportedly fired back:
Oh, they’re tired? They’re fucking tired? Well I’m fucking tired and fatigued too.
Trump then launched into a verbal tirade about Joe Biden, calling him “too old,” according to excerpts of the book that Insider published on Friday.
Fabrizio reportedly counseled Trump against depicting Biden as “a crazy liberal,” saying: “I don’t think people will buy it.”
But Trump obviously paid no attention.
Woodward and Costa’s tell-all book about the final months of the Trump White House is set for release on Tuesday.
Other details unearthed by the duo include Trump’s furious flip-outs at Republicans and his threat of withdrawing his friendship from former Vice President Mike Pence.