The U.S. trade deficit fell to its lowest level in 18 months in June, pushed down by a drop in oil imports and a rise in exports. The trade gap narrowed to $42.9 billion in June, down from $48 billion in May, the Commerce Department said. The trade deficit is the gap between how much the U.S. imports and exports, with a lower deficit generally considered good for the economy.
UN: World food
prices up sharply
International food prices rose sharply in July, driven by a spike in grain and sugar prices. The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization said severe drought gripping the U.S. Midwest has sent corn prices soaring by almost 23 percent, and expectations of worsened crop prospects in Russia because of dry weather sent world wheat prices up 19 percent.
its chief exec
Online broker E-Trade is ousting its CEO and naming its chairman to the top spot until a replacement is found. It's looking for a new top executive as it adjusts its strategy, which is focused on strengthening its financial position. Steven Freiberg had been at E-Trade's helm for more than two years. Frank Petrilli, 61, the company's current chairman, has been in that role since January.
PepsiCo Inc., the world's largest snack food maker, will return to Myanmar after 15 years to distribute beverages under loosened restrictions on investment in the Southeast Asian country. It also plans to explore building manufacturing plants there.
1Q profit down
JPMorgan Chase formally revised its first-quarter financial results to show a lower profit. The reduction followed the bank's internal investigation into the nearly $6 billion in trading losses revealed in recent months. The bank now says that it earned $4.92 billion for the quarter ended March 31, or $459 million less than the $5.38 billion originally reported.
The Wendy's Co. posted a loss in the second quarter as a result of debt refinancing. But a key sales figure same store sales rose as the company worked to reinvent itself as a higher-end hamburger chain. The chain says sales at restaurants open at least 15 months rose 3.2 percent during the quarter, helped by remodeled locations and new menu items.
IRS to close Provo
office for 8 days
The Internal Revenue Service's Taxpayer Assistance Center in Provo will temporarily close for eight days later this month due to staff scheduling and training. The center, located at 173 E. 100 North, will be closed Aug. 15-17, 20, 24, 27, 30 and 31.