Hello! Here’s what you need to know on Thursday.
1. Trump advisor and son-in-law Jared Kushner is in trouble over Donald Trump Jr.’s Russian email disclosure. Kushner was the only current White House staffer present at the June 2016 meeting with a Russian lawyer, ahead of which Trump Jr. was promised dirt on Hillary Clinton. Meanwhile, fans of Bob Dylan’s 1965 video for Subterranean Homesick Blues will enjoy White House counselor Kellyanne Conway’s appearance on Fox News.
2. Google has escaped paying 1.1 billion euros (£970m/$AU1.6 bn) in back taxes in France. The US tech giant won its case in a Paris court over advertising contracts in France booked through its subsidiary in low-tax Ireland. In 2015 the company paid just 6.7m euros in corporate taxes in France.
3. The Royal Bank of Scotland has agreed to a £4.2 billion ($AU7 bn) settlement with the US over misselling $32 billion of mortgage-backed securities before the GFC. The US Federal Housing Finance Agency will withdraw its legal action against the RBS as part of the deal.
4. Bitcoin is embroiled in a civil war. The cryptocurrency’s value has been on a tear, up over 250% since last year, but in the past few months its price has experienced big swings. The price reflects uncertainty surrounding the outcome of that war, which will be decided August 1 when crypto-power brokers determine how the tech that powers the currency will be structured.
5. Rio Tinto’s proposed Resolution copper mine in Arizona could be the biggest test of Donald Trump’s push to slash regulation. The massive project has been on the drawing board for more than a decade and would leave a crater a 1.5 miles wide and 1,000 feet deep. Trump’s Commerce Secretary, Wilbur Ross, has it in mind for his “hit list” of regulations to kill off.
6. PC shipments are at a 10-year low and the Apple Mac is also seeing a big slump. Worldwide shipments of PCs fell 4.3% in the second quarter, compared with the same period in 2016. It was the 11th straight quarter that shipments have declined.
7. Former Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva found guilty of corruption and money laundering. Brazil’s first working class president was sentenced to 9.5 years in jail, but will remain free on appeal. Current president Michel Temer is also facing corruption charges, along with dozens of nation’s political and business elite as authorities recovered more than $3 billion from them.
8. Science may just have found a way to treat the flu and common cold. New research shows the answer may lie in a protein that suppresses the body’s key antiviral reaction, and the creation of drug to allow the body to use this natural protection.
9. A 1.1-trillion-ton iceberg has broken away from Antartica. The prosaically named A68, is the size of Wales (or metropolitan Melbourne) and would fill nearly 1000 Sydney Harbours. Here’s what scientists think will happen next (alas no one said how long it would take to melt and fit into a gin and tonic).
10. Chuck Blazer, the American FIFA executive who blew the whistle on corruption in the organisation as died. Blazer, 72, was found guilty of racketeering, wire fraud and money laundering and was banned for life from the game, but his admissions set off a global scandal that ended FIFA president Sepp Blatter’s reign.
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