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  1. Get in touch:
  2. Apple iPhone sales disappoint
  3. Sterling back at $1.29
  4. BP returns to profit in first quarter
  5. Alitalia enters administration

Live Reporting

By Dearbail Jordan

All times stated are UK

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Good night

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On that rather thrilling note, it is now time to wind down Business Live.

Thank you for joining us on Tuesday and please log on again tomorrow from 6.00am sharp for all the latest business and economic news and analysis.

Results take a bite out of Apple's shares

Expect a choppy day for Apple on Wednesday on the stock markets. 

Shares are down 2.1% lower at $144 in after-hours trading. Apple has been on an upwards trajectory for some time - has it now hit a speed bump?

Apple's share price

Apple's China sales slide

Apple in China
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The biggest fall in sales was in China.

Second quarter figures reveal that revenue in Greater China fell to $10.7bn from $12.4bn last year.

Apple's share price fell by 2% in post-market trade.

Apple sells fewer iPhones

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Closer analysis of Apple's second quarter figures show that the company sold fewer iPhones than it did in the same period in 2016.

It shifted 51.1m units between January and March last year compared to 50.7m in the most recent quarter.

However, iPhone revenue in the second quarter of 2017 was higher at $33.2bn on last year's $32.8bn.

Total net income from Apple's businesses rose to $11bn compared to $10.5bn.

Cook praises Apple's strong quarter

Tim Cook
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Apple's chief executive Tim Cook said: "We are proud to report a strong March quarter, with revenue growth accelerating from the December quarter and continued robust demand for iPhone 7 Plus.” 

He also said that the company had reported its highest-ever quarterly revenue from its services business - a unit that the company is keen to grow to balance its reliance on products such as the iPhone.

BreakingApple sells less than expected iPhones

Apple sold 50.8m iPhones in the second quarter - against estimates of 51.4m.

BreakingApple sales miss forecasts

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Apple second quarter sales rose to $52.9bn, ahead of the $50.5bn it reported in the same quarter last year, but was below estimates of $53bn.

Sales in Cadbury-owner Mondelez dip

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Sales at Mondelez, the US business that bought Britain's Cadbury, fell 0.6% in the first quarter.

Revenue fell to $6.4bn in the first three months of the year. Operating profit also edged lower, down 0.4% at $2.5bn.

The company blamed "currency headwinds" and Irene Rosenfeld, chairman and chief executive of Mondelez said: "We had a solid start to the year despite challenging market conditions."

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US stock markets close up

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended Tuesday trading up 36.43 points at 20,949.89.

The S&P 500 closed up 2.84 points at 2,391.17.

The Nasdaq finished 3.77 points ahead at 2,391.17.

Saudis to float close to 5% of Aramco

Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
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The Saudi government expects to float around 5% of the state-owned oil giant Aramco in 2018.

Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said the stake offered "will be not be very far off 5%".

He said: "We have two main factors to decide the percentage to be listed...First the demand, whether there will be demand or not. Second, what do we have in terms of investments in the pipeline inside Saudi or outside."

Dr Doom: world's biggest risk is Trump

Donald Trump
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The man who predicted the 2008 financial crisis says the biggest risk facing the world today is US President Donald Trump.

Nouriel Roubini, a professor of economics who is otherwise known as Dr Doom, told CNN Money that "the biggest elephant in the room is the United States".

He said that "biggest uncertainty in the world and biggest tail risk comes from the economic, foreign and security policies of the Trump administration."

Professor Roubini said that because the US is the world's largest economy, the knock-on effect of a "severe policy mistake" can be huge.

Apple: a question of cash

Investors in Apple will also look at whether the company's enormous cash pile has grown even more.

The most recent data put it at $246bn - the vast majority of which is parked overseas because Apple would have to pay taxes of 35% to bring it back into the US.

However, the Trump administration set out its tax plan last week which proposed a one-time repatriation levy. The White House did not say what the tax rate would be.

Apple shares hit high ahead of results

Apple iPhones
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Shares in Apple are trading at an all time high of $147.28 on Tuesday ahead of the technology giant's second quarter and first half results.

Apple expects to report revenue of between $51.5bn and $53.5bn. It would be an improvement on the second quarter of 2016 when sales fell to $50.6bn.

Investors are looking for the company to shift more smartphones even with the new iPhone 8 on the horizon.

Business Live will report Apple's figures at 9.30pm.

Self-driving cars gain traction

US airlines told to 'get their stuff together'

Oscar Munoz
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Following his appearance in front of US House Transportation Committee, United Airlines boss Oscar Munoz was asked if he expects changes to regulation for the airlines industry.

He told CNBC: "I don't know. The sense in the room was one of an admonition - to get your collective stuff together, you, the industry and you can avoid us, which I think is fair.

"If we don't do what we said then we should be able to stand up to whatever they might offer for us."

The hearing, which was also attended by Southwest Airlines and Alaska Airlines, was called after an elderly passenger was dragged off a United Airlines flight.

SFO charges UK freight group with conspiracy

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has charged logistics and freight business FH Bertling and four individuals with one count of conspiracy to give or accept corrupt payments.

The SFO claims that FH Bertling, Robert McNally, Georgina Ayres, Giuseppe Morreale and Stephen Emler conspired together and with others to give or accept corrupt payments for assisting the business to win or retain contracts for the supply of freight forwarding services relating to a North Sea oil exploration project known as Jasmine.  

In addition, Christopher Lane has been charged with a separate count of conspiracy to give or accept corrupt payments.

George's first day on the job

Here's George Osborne, the new editor of the London Evening Standard, with a front page story about his old boss.

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Le Pen promises 'francs not euros'

Francs and euros
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Marine Le Pen says French people will have "francs in their pockets instead of euros" within two years if she is elected as France's president.

Ms Le Pen, who faces centrist Emmanuel Macron in the final round of voting on Sunday, told Reuters on Tuesday that if she is victorious she will begin negotiations over EU reform immediately and, after six to eight months of talks, would hold a referendum. 

She said she is convinced there would not be a run on the banks during EU talks but does not rule out putting capital controls in place.

Italy appoints experts to run Alitalia

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Italy's Industry Minister Carlo Calenda has appointed three commissioners to run Alitalia after the airline asked to be placed under special administration.

They are: Luigi Gubitosi, chief executive of state-owned broadcasting group Rai; Enrico Laghi, an accountancy and finance professor who sits on a number of company boards; and professor and airports expert Stefano Paleari.

Italy grants Alitalia a short-term loan

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Italy has granted Alitalia a short-term loan of 600m euros (£506.6m) after shareholders in the airline voted to put the business into administration.

The drastic action follows workers' rejection last week of job and salary cuts that management had proposed as part of a 2bn euros rescue plan.

Spotify's UK customers pay more

Visa's shares rise on rival's gain

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average continues to flutter around the 20,953 mark.

It is up 39.72 points with Visa leading the risers after rival MasterCard reported better than expected profits on a rise in card spending. Visa's share price rose 1.26% to $92.41.

The S&P 500 is 3.28 points ahead at 2,391.61.

Gains on the Nasdaq have narrowed by a rise of 4.74 points to 6,096.34.

May fights back over Brexit meeting

BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg tweets

Greece bends to demands from lenders

China takes toll on mining stocks

The FTSE 100 finished 45.68 points higher at 7,249.62.

Testing specialist Intertek was the day's biggest riser, up 3.3% to £42.00.

Miners dominated the fallers, led by Antofagasta which closed 3.3% down at 810p, followed by Fresnillo, which fell 2.9% to £14.09 and Anglo American, down 2.3% at £10.80.

There are concerns that manufacturing growth in China, which supports the industrial metals industry, is slowing. 

The FTSE 250 closed 189.93 points up at 19,805.29.

Passing the buck

US Representative Rick Larsen sums up where United Airlines went wrong when one of its customers - Dr Dao - was dragged off an overbooked flight.

He said: "You made your problem the customer's problem." 

Dr Dao was removed because United had to transport a number of its staff to work on another flight.

United chief executive Oscar Munoz agrees and says that from now on crew members will no longer be allowed to fly unless they check in 60 minutes beforehand.

To-may-to, to-mah-to

Donald Trump
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Terry Branstad seems to have a different view on China and steel compared to his ultimate boss Donald Trump.

The US administration last month launched an investigation into whether cheap imports of steel was a threat to national security. 

At the time, Mr Trump insisted that the probe had "nothing to do with China". 

Trump's pick for China targets 'unfair' steel sales

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (L) and Terry Branstad
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New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (L) and Terry Branstad

Terry Branstad, Iowa's Republican governor and President Donald Trump's nominee to be the US ambassador to China, says he will do everything possible to address what he calls China's "unfair and illegal" sales of under-priced steel in the world market.

"I want to do everything I can to make sure that we stop the unfair and illegal activities that we've seen from China in the steel industry," he told the US Senate at his confirmation hearing.

Billionaire bets on Twitter of the future

Mark Cuban
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Twitter's share price got a boost on Tuesday after billionaire investor Mark Cuban said that he had bought shares in the micro-blogging site.

Mr Cuban, who controls the National Basketball Association Dallas Mavericks and co-owns media group 2929 Entertainment, said: "I started buying Twitter just recently because they finally got their act together with artificial intelligence."

Twitter's share price rose 3.88% to $18.22.

US tech is 'biggest threat to banks'

Joe Miller, Europe business reporter for BBC World Service, is at the business version of the G20. The summit, called B20, is in Berlin and he's been hearing the views of Deutsche Bank boss John Cryan on the future of banking.

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Microsoft targets schools with Windows

BreakingHollywood avoids writers' strike

Hollywood sign
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Film and television writers have struck a last minute contract deal with major networks and studios, averting a second strike in 10 years. 

The Writers Guild of America (WGA) and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers announced the agreement on a new three-year deal a few hours before a strike was due to start.

United removed a 'good amount' of passengers

United Airlines
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Oscar Munoz is asked if United Airlines had, previous to Dr Dao, had to call law enforcement to remove someone from a flight because of overbooking. 

Mr Munoz said it has happened in "a good amount" of instances.

Bob Jordan, executive vice president and chief commercial officer of Southwest Airline said his company had not had to call in law enforcement to remove a passenger because of overbooking.

The real cost of changing a booking

Representative Peter Defazio asks the airlines on why it costs so much - $200 and upwards - to change someone's booking.

He doesn't get much of an answer. And Mr Defazio does point out that United Airlines reported $800m in change fees last year.

United Airlines training 'needs strengthening'

Oscar Munoz
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Bill Shuster, chairman of the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure asks what airlines are doing to "empower" employees to help them deal with a situation like the one involving Dr Dao.

Mr Munoz admits that United Airlines customer service for dealing with "escalation issues" is something that needs strengthening. 

He says staff are trained in this at the beginning but he believes it needs to take place more often.

Consumers 'at the mercy of airlines'

William McGee, aviation consultant of the Consumers Union is now addressing the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.

He says: "The abusive mistreatment of Dr. David Dao onboard United Express Flight 3411 last month shocked us all, and powerfully brought home, once again, that consumers are at the mercy of powerful airlines in an ever-more concentrated industry, facing increasingly less competition, and showing less interest in how their passengers are treated, than in how their passengers can be taken advantage of to increase profits.

"American consumers are very much aware that Dr. Dao’s fate could all-too-easily have been their own."

US car sales slide

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Stepping away from airlines for a moment, the US car industry has been struggling.

Ford reported a 7.2% fall in sales in April, worse than a forecast 4.7% decline.

General Motors also said that sales fell, down 5.8% compared to expectations of a 2% drop.

United Airlines: what we should have done

United Airlines

United Airlines chief executive Oscar Munoz said there were four areas there the airline should have acted differently regarding the violent removal of Dr Dao from one of its flights. 

"Most importantly our employees did not have the authority to do what was right for our customers and for our company," he saidin his written testimony to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. "As CEO that is my responsibility."  

United Airlines boss sorry for 'breach of trust'

Oliver Munoz
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United Airlines boss Oscar Munoz says he is in front of US Congress because "we had a serious breach of public trust".

He apologises again to Dr Dao, the passengers on that flight and all of its customers. Mr Munoz also says sorry for his inadequate immediate response.