Ready to retaliate, the Union tables a list of goods in danger
The EU presented last week to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) a list of US products on which the bloc may in the future apply extra import duties in retaliation to tariff measures on steel and aluminium the US is readying, news wires reported. “This would be to compensate in an equivalent manner for the impact of the US tariff measures on steel and aluminium, which the EU considers to be safeguard measures in effect, should they enter into force,” the EU said in a written statement. This notification does not result in any immediate imposition of additional duties on imports from the US so far, it added. The EU said some retaliation could be applied already from 20 June.
Beijing seems ready to increase purchases in the US energy and agriculture sectors
The world's largest economies, China and the US, agreed to drop their tariff threats while they work on a wider trade agreement, news wires reported last week. The US said it will not impose $150bn in tariffs on China, as negotiations under which China would import more energy and agricultural commodities from the US will be launched.
The Japanese company is set to become world's biggest music publisher
Sony announced last Tuesday it is buying a controlling stake in EMI Music Publishing for about $2.3bn, effectively becoming the world's largest music publisher, news wires reported. With the deal, the Japanese company takes control over two million songs by artists from Queen and Sam Smith to Alicia Keys and Kanye West.
Claims for $3.5bn in retaliation
Japan, Russia and Turkey warned the US about potential retaliation for its tariffs on steel and aluminium, the WTO said last Tuesday, bringing the total US tariff bill to around $3.5bn annually.
I want from you commitments, Macron tells tech giant CEOs
President Emmanuel Macron told executives from the world's biggest technology firms on 23 May that he wanted innovation to be a driving force for the French economy, but also that they needed to contribute more to society.
China slashes duty on imported cars by 10%
China will cut tariffs on most imported cars by 10% to 15% from 1 July, the finance ministry said last Tuesday, following a thaw in trade tensions with the US. Import tariffs for auto parts would be cut to 6% from mostly around 10%, the ministry said in a statement.
GE merges train unit with Wabtec in $11.1bn deal
General Electric confirmed last Monday it was merging the bulk of its transportation business which makes train engines with Wabtec Corp, a US manufacturer of equipment for the rail industry, in a deal valued at about $11.1bn.
Ryanair reports record profits despite problems
Ryanair, Europe's biggest low-cost airline, reported last Monday record profits during the financial year ending on 31 March, despite cancelling 20,000 flights last winter and rising fuels prices, news wires reported.
In Brief
Hamburg becomes first German city to ban diesel
Hamburg will become the first German city to impose a partial ban on diesel vehicles, blocking for them portions of two streets from 31 May, the local authorities said. In February, after a long-running legal battle, German Constitutional Court gave the cities the green-light to impose diesel bans. The reputation of diesel cars took a further hit in 2015 when car giant Volkswagen admitted it had installed software in its diesel vehicles that cheated emissions tests. All diesel vehicles that do not meet the Euro-6 emissions standards will be affected by the Hamburg ban.

Washington moves to ease crisis-era banking rules
The US banking rules were further relaxed last week after a law was approved by the House of Representatives and sent to the president to sign it into law. The bill, which won some bipartisan support, reduces the oversight requirements for banks with less than $250bn in assets, among other measures. Supporters say it will help banks grow, but critics say it could mean a return to reckless behaviour among lenders. Republicans, including President Donald Trump, have repeatedly pledged to repeal 2010 financial regulations known as Dodd-Frank.

Apple pays Ireland first tranche of disputed taxes
Apple has paid €1.5bn ($1.76bn) into an escrow account set up by the Irish government to hold €13bn in disputed taxes, Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe announced, cited by Reuters. The EC ordered Apple in August 2016 to pay the taxes it ruled the company had received as illegal state aid, as part of its wider drive against what it says are sweetheart tax deals usually used by smaller states in the bloc to lure multinational companies, their jobs and investment. Both Apple and Dublin are appealing the ruling, saying the tax treatment was in line with Irish and EU law.

Marks & Spencer to close over 100 stores by 2022
British retailer Marks & Spencer announced last Tuesday plans to shut more than 100 UK stores by 2022 in an ongoing restructuring. The chain aims to shift at least a third of sales online and to focus on more successful parts of its business such as food and moving away from areas such as clothing and homeware. The London-listed giant did not specify the number of job losses, but thousands of positions are believed to be at risk. The retailer had a total of 1,035 stores at the end of its 2017/2018 financial year.