Missouri Minute: US, EU avoid tariff escalation; bike-sharing startup exiting St. Louis

Here are today’s top headlines from across Missouri:

US, EU plan to avoid further tariffs, boost European soybean imports

By Annika Merrilees
The United States and European Union will hold off on imposing further tariffs on each other, following an announcement Wednesday. President Donald Trump and EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said they had reached an agreement on how to move forward with a trade relationship. Trump said the European Union will increase imports of soybeans, one of Missouri’s top global exports, and liquefied natural gas. The announcement suggests Trump has backed off plans to impose tariffs on European automobiles. Read more

Chinese bike-sharing company Ofo backpedals from St. Louis, other US cities

Chinese bike-sharing startup Ofo announced that it’s pulling out of St. Louis, among other U.S. markets. Ofo only recently began operating in the city, renting out its dockless bikes starting May 10. The company said on Tuesday that it will move operations out of the city within the week and lay off some U.S.-based staff by Friday. The St. Louis exit by Ofo comes as other mobility startups have shown interest in the city. Read more

Following EU fine, AG Hawley issues second subpoena in Google investigation 

By Kristoffer Tigue
Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley announced Wednesday that his office had served a second subpoena on Google, continuing the state’s investigation into the tech company’s business practices. The new subpoena will look into whether Google has potentially broken state and federal laws by engaging in anti-competitive practices. The move comes a week after European Union authorities fined Google a record $5.1 billion. Read more

Boeing beats profit estimates, projects tanker costs will hurt defense margins

Boeing on Wednesday reported second-quarter profit that beat expectations. Yet shares of the planemaker still fell 3 percent after it announced that operating margins will drop for its Defense, Space and Security division, which employs about 14,500 people in the St. Louis area. The margin forecast was revised down due to a combined $426 million of charges and cost overruns caused by Boeing’s work on its KC-46 aerial tanker. Read more

Centene won’t follow competitors in buying up practices, CEO says

Centene does not plan to buy medical practices in an effort to keep up with its competition, CEO Michael Neidorff said during a conference call Tuesday. The Clayton-based health insurer acquired Community Medical Group, a Miami-based medical care provider, earlier this year. But Neidorff suggested deals like that would be rare. Read more

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