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Summary

  1. UK trade deficit biggest since 2008
  2. Aramco see increase in global oil demand
  3. Facebook strikes back in bias row
  4. Credit Suisse loss: 'Most difficult markets on record'
  5. Shanghai's market rallies after sharp losses
  6. Easyjet reports £24m half-year loss

Live Reporting

By Russell Hotten

All times stated are UK

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  1. Goodbye

    That's it for us tonight. Join us again from 6am when we'll have the latest from EDF Energy's AGM and Toyota's full year results. 

  2. S&P has best day for two months

    Wall Street has closed up, with a rally in Amazon's shares helping drive the S&P 500 to its biggest one-day gain for two months. 

    The Dow Jones industrial average closed up 222.16 points, or 1.25%, to 17,928.07, the S&P 500 gained 25.68 points, or 1.25%, to 2,084.37 and the Nasdaq Composite added 59.67 points, or 1.26%, to 4,809.88. 

  3. Ireland residents in protest over sale to Goldman Sachs fund

    Video content

    Video caption: Diarmaid Fleming reports on the impact of foreign money in Ireland's property sector.

    Residents of an apartment block in Dublin have been protesting outside the Irish parliament today after being told they've to leave their rented homes following the sale of their block to an investment fund owned by Goldman Sachs. The protest comes the same day as a survey shows that rents in Dublin have reached record levels, reflecting an acute housing shortage, with the same survey showing the lowest ever number of properties available for rent in the city. Since Ireland's property and banking crash eight years ago, foreign investment funds have become significant players in Ireland's property market. While the government and state agencies have been keen to woo them, not everyone is happy. Click on Diarmaid Fleming's report for more details.

  4. Could there be a white knight for BHS?

    BHS store

    According to BBC business correspondent Emma Simpson the answer is yes. 

    "It's understood that there have been multiple firm offers for some or potentially all of the business," said BBC business correspondent Emma Simpson.

    The offers will now be put to secured creditors for consideration, but the level of interest will raise hopes that some of the 164 shops and almost 11,000 jobs currently at risk can be saved.

    Read more here

  5. Wall St on the up again

    Wall Street is continuing its upward trajectory, with the S&P heading towards its best one day increase in a month. 

    The Dow Jones is currently up 1.1% at 17, 905.99, the S&P 500 is up 1.2% and the Nasdaq is 1.1% higher.

    Read our latest market report here.

  6. Panama leak: Confess now, says Norway

    Panama in the Caribbean

    Norway's white-collar crimes police unit on Tuesday set up a telephone hotline for people seeking to confess to tax evasion linked to the Panama Papers documents leak. The police said those who come forward could expect more lenient treatment.

    The initiative was announced one day after the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists released a huge cache of searchable documents online that were leaked from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca. 

    Despite the release of the documents, millions more remain in the ICIJ's hand, although these too may become publicly available.

  7. Budweiser: Call it 'Bahamas' not 'America'

    Bud beer cans

    Commentators on the Breakingviews desk at Reuters having been scratching their heads at Budweiser's "surprise" decision to rename its beer "America" until after the US elections. The beer company's marketing spiel says it wants to celebrate everything that's great about the US, bringing two iconic brands - America and Budweiser - together. The labels will include phrases from the Pledge of Allegiance and lyrics from The Star Spangled Banner.  

    It's just a shame that Budweiser is owned by a Brazilian-run, Belgium-based conglomerate, Anheuser-Busch InBev. What's more, Breakingviews points out, Budweiser takes its name from a far nicer (I think) lager that has been brewed in the Czech Republic for centuries.

    And if that's not enough. A quick look through Anheuser's ownership structure takes you through the Bahamas, Luxembourg and the Netherlands. As commentator Kevin Allison writes: "So much for Budweiser's American exceptionalism."

  8. Wall Street set for best day in a month

    US stock markets are having a good day. The three major indexes are up 1%, putting them on track for their biggest one-day gain in about a month.

    There's been a rally in financial shares, and a rise in commodity prices has boosted energy-related stocks. Amazon jumped 3.2% to a record of $701.40, providing the biggest boost on the S&P and the Nasdaq.

    Analysts at Bernstein raised Amazon's price target to $1,000, the highest on Wall Street, saying it expects the online giant's margins to expand much faster than currently expected.

    The Dow Jones was up 194.02 points, or 1.1%, at 17,899.93 points, the S&P 500 was up 20.71 points, or 1.01%, at 2,079.4. The Nasdaq rose 48.72 points, or 1.03%, to 4,798.93.

    All 10 major S&P sectors were higher, led by a 1.535 rise in the industrials index. Oil was up about 4% as supply disruptions in Canada and elsewhere overshadowed fears of oversupply. 

  9. EDF reports sales fall

    Hinkley Point

    French energy giant EDF says sales fell 7% in the first three months of the year in the face of stiff competition, a mild winter and lower energy prices.

    The figures come ahead of Wednesday's AGM where investors will quiz management over their plans for the Hinkley Point nuclear plant in the UK.

    EDF, 85% controlled by the French state, has struggled to find the cash for its 66.5% stake in the project.

    In April it pushed a final decision on the £18bn plant back to September.

  10. Amazon squares up to Google

    Amazon has launched an online video service to rival Google's YouTube. Amazon Video Direct will allow users to post videos and earn royalties.

    Viewers can rent and buy content or watch it for free with adverts. An ad-free version is offered to Amazon Prime members - a subscription service with other benefits.

    Initially, videos will be viewable in the US, Germany, Austria, Japan and the UK. Amazon already offers access to professional TV shows and films via Prime Video, a rival to Netflix.

  11. BHS: Staff should stay 'optimistic' and hope for the best

    BBC Radio 5 Live

    Colletta Smith and Blacks' Malcom Winn

    With storm clouds hanging over BHS, radio 5live's Colletta Smith has been out on the high street today talking to retail survivors. 

    Even though things might look grim, many troubled retailers survive to fight another day, says Malcolm Winn, store manager at the Shrewsbury branch of Blacks, which was bought out of administration by JD Sports.

    "It was very tough not knowing whether you've got a job in a week or a month's time. But thankfully for us someone did come along and purchase the company," he says.

    And, with administrators at BHS sifting through potential bids, Mr Winn has a message for staff: "Be optimistic, and hope it's good news."

  12. AC Milan sale talks enter new phase

    AC Milan player

    Former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi opened exclusive talks on Tuesday with a group of Chinese investors about selling a majority stake in football club AC Milan, one of the media mogul's most cherished assets. 

    Mr Berlusconi's family holding company Fininvest said it signed a memorandum with the Chinese consortium at a board meeting on Tuesday to "kick off in-depth negotiations". 

    Fininvest gave no deadline but a source told the Reuters news agency that  the talks would last one month and were non-binding. "The Chinese are valuing the club at up to €750m, including debt," the source said. 

  13. FTSE 100 finishes higher

    The FTSE 100 finished 0.68% higher at 6,156.6 points, lifted by a 5.2% rise in Capita shares and a 4.7% increase for Anglo American. Taylor Wimpey was the main faller, down 2%.

    The FTSE 100 has lost 1.4% this year and is 13.6% below a record high reached in April 2015, with concerns about a China-led global economic slowdown having hit world stock markets.

    FTSE 100 risers/faller
  14. Enough to turn you to drink

    Beer cans

    Forgive us for fueling Budweiser's latest marketing campaign, but we thought you'd like to know.

    The US drinks company is going for what it calls "patriotic packaging" this summer. The brand name on most cans and bottles will read "America", and will include phrases from the Pledge of Allegiance and lyrics from The Star Spangled Banner and America the Beautiful.  

    The creative director at Budweiser's branding firm, JKR, is Tosh Hall. "We thought nothing was more iconic than Budweiser and nothing was more iconic than America,” says Tosh.

    Budweiser, by the way, is owned by a Belgian-Brazilian giant, Anheuser-Busch InBev.

  15. Wall Street stock markets move higher

    Wall Street opened higher, tracking global equities, as investors' appetite for risk increased and as oil prices rose. Oil was up about 1.5%, driven by supply disruptions in Canada and elsewhere that have knocked out 2.5 million barrels of daily production. 

    The Dow Jones was up 117.04 points, or 0.66%, at 17,822.95 points, while the S&P 500 was up 10.77 points, or 0.52%, at 2,069.46. The Nasdaq rose 15.73 points, or 0.33%, to 4,765.94. 

    All 10 major S&P sectors were higher, led by a 0.75% rise in the energy index.

  16. New pension website 'a welcome development'

    The Department for Work and Pensions' new tracing service to help people more easily and quickly locate their lost pension savings has been welcomed by some experts.

    Sterling notes and coins
    Quote Message: This is a welcome development. The Pension Tracing service will help people track down lost pension pots and can dovetail with the forthcoming development of the expanding Pension Wise service. The simplest and most effective way to avoid losing track of old pensions is to consolidate them as far as possible into one arrangement; this can be done by selecting one pension you prefer to work with and transferring old pensions into it.
    Quote Message: The government and pensions industry is also working on the Pension Dashboard, which will help investors view all their pension pots in one place. We would like to see the government go further and to modify the terms of auto-enrolment to allow employees to select the pension into which their employer pays their pension contributions. This would help to put the individual at the heart of the pension system.” from Tom McPhail Head of retirement policy, Hargreaves Lansdown
    Tom McPhailHead of retirement policy, Hargreaves Lansdown
  17. US to 'discuss Iran ban with European banks'

    Iran skyline at night

    US Secretary of State John Kerry will meet representatives of European banks in London on Thursday to discuss doing business in Iran, Reuters reports, citing unnamed sources. 

    The US and Europe lifted sanctions in January under a deal with Iran to limit its nuclear programme, but a ban remained on dollar transactions being processed through the US financial system.

    Banks, and Tehran, have expressed frustration at their inability to deepen financial ties.

  18. Trade figures: Small business reaction

    Quote Message: We have not seen a quarterly trade deficit of this size since the early days of the financial crisis. The government has a real challenge ahead if it hopes to meet its target to increase the value of exports to £1 trillion and support 100,000 new exporters by 2020... As the new Minister Lord Price takes over the export brief within Government, we will be urgently discussing with him how to make funding and support more effective for small firms looking to export.” from Mike Cherry National Chairman, Federation of Small Business
    Mike CherryNational Chairman, Federation of Small Business
  19. Eurotrash referendum special

    Antoine de Caunes

    If you were a fan of the cult Channel 4 show Eurotrash, then you are in for a treat.

    The Guardian reports that the show is making a one-off special appearance on the eve of the EU referendum.

    Hosted by Antoine de Caunes (pictured) and French fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier, Eurotrash ran from 1993 to 2007.

    Their mission on 22 June is to remind their “straight-laced British chums” of the “many, varied and occasionally alarming cultural delights enjoyed by our European cousins”, reports the Guardian.