The world's biggest tax case hits the courtroom this week. Apple is battling the EU's Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, who in 2016 ruled that Apple's tax deals with Ireland allowed the company to pay far less than other businesses and levied a €13B tax bill on the iPhone maker. The first hints of how the Apple case may turn out will come from a pair of rulings scheduled for Sept. 24, but a final ruling could take months and empower a potential new crackdown on internet giants. (FT)
The United Auto Workers union has begun a nationwide strike against General Motors, with some 46,000 members walking off the job after contract talks hit an impasse. Shutting down North American production will cost GM about $400M/day. GM has enough inventory for a short strike of one or two weeks. The strike does not include Ford and Fiat Chrysler, whose UAW contracts were extended while the union tries to negotiate a deal with GM. (SA)
Brent crude futures posted their biggest-ever jump when trading opened in the wake of the weekend’s attack on a Saudi Arabian oil facility that has removed 5% of global supplies. The estimated 5.7 million barrels a day of lost production is the single biggest disruption on record, surpassing the 1979 hit to Iranian output from the Islamic Revolution as well as the loss of Kuwait and Iraq supplies during the 1990 Gulf War. All eyes are now on how quickly the country can restore supplies, with people familiar saying significant volumes could come back on stream within days, while it could take weeks to restore full capacity. President Donald Trump authorized the release of oil from the U.S. emergency reserve, declaring on Twitter that there is “plenty of oil.”
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.