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Summary

  1. Get in touch at bizlivepage@bbc.co.uk
  2. UK presents 'untested' customs plan
  3. FTSE 100 index climbs
  4. Inflation flat at 2.6% in July
  5. Train fares could rise by up to 3.6%

Live Reporting

By Dearbail Jordan

All times stated are UK

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Thank you for joining Business Live today.

We will be back at 6.00am on Wednesday morning when we will bring you all the business and economics news as it breaks.

Do androids dream of electric footballers?

Footballer
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Computer scientists at University of Southampton are testing an artificially intelligent tool for predicting Premier League football results.

The machine learning algorithm has managed to beat BBC football commentator Mark Lawrenson's predictions for two seasons in a row.

The team now wants fantasy football fans to try to beat it.

BreakingTrump: CEOs are not taking their jobs seriously

Donald Trump
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Donald Trump claims that the chief executives who have left his manufacturing advisory committee did so "because they're not taking their jobs seriously as it pertains to this country".

He claims that the companies - singling out Merck - make their products outside the US.

The US President said they are leaving the council "out of embarrassment" because "I have been lecturing them" about them making their products outside of America.

Trump signs order to boost US infrastructure

US President Donald Trump has just announced that he has signed an executive order to reform the planning permit process in a move to boost the country's infrastructure.

Mixed closed for Wall Street

Wall Street
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 8.60 points at 22,002.31.

The S&P 500 finished 1.14 lower at 2,464.67.

The Nasdaq ended 7.22 points down at 6,333.01.

KPMG to pay $6.2m to settle US audit claim

Accountancy firm KPMG will pay $6.2m to settle charges in the US that it failed to properly audit the financial statements of oil and gas company Miller Energy Resources.

The Securities and Exchange Commission said KPMG did not admit or deny the agency's findings that the company and a partner improperly audited Miller Energy Resources in 2011 "resulting in investors being misinformed about the energy company's value".

Johnson & Johnson chief to remain on Trump council

Donald Trump (L) and Alex Gorsky (R) at the White House
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Donald Trump (L) and Alex Gorsky (R) at the White House

Alex Gorsky, the chairman & chief executive of Johnson & Johnson, says that he will remain on Donald Trump's Manufacturing Advisory Council.

Commenting on the chief executives who have decided to leave the council, Mr Gorsky says: "I respect their decision as a matter of personal conscience."

He adds: "Given the events of the past few days, I can understand the concerns - even the fear - that some people have expressed. These are difficult days for everyone. In the end, I have concluded that Johnson & Johnson has a responsibility to remain engaged, not as a way to support any specific political agenda, but as a way to represent the values of our credo as crucial public policy is discussed and developed."

Oil trims earlier falls

Brent crude has reversed and is now trading up 0.2% at $50.83 a barrel.

West Texas Intermediate is flat at $47.61 following earlier falls.

The £5,000 commuter club

Groucho Marx once said: "I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member."

Here's another one to avoid...

View more on twitter

Walmart: Trump missed chance to unify US

Walmart chief executive Doug McMillon
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The chief executive of retail Walmart has given his verdict on the US President's response to the deadly violence in Charlottesville.

In a public statement, chief executive Doug McMillon says that "we too felt that he missed a critical opportunity to help bring our country together by unequivocally rejecting the appalling actions of white supremacists".

He says that Donald Trump's subsequent comments on Monday were "a step in the right direction".

Mr McMillon will continue to serve on a presidential advisory council on economic development.

Where next for wages?

Money changing hands
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On Wednesday, the Office for National Statistics will release employment figures for the April-June period.

One of the key figures to look out for is wage growth, especially in light of Tuesday's inflation data which shows that the Consumer Price Index measure remained at 2.6% in July.

The most recent data shows that wages, excluding bonuses, rose by 2%.

Will that rise? We'll find out tomorrow.

Listen: Concerns rise over tit-for-tat sanctions

Lloyds-owned education provider fails to block critical report

Learndirect is an apprenticeship and adult education provider that was privatised and sold to the private equity arm of Lloyds Bank six years ago.

The group has been fighting to block the publication of a critical report by Ofsted inspectors but has failed to do so. The document will be released on Thursday.

What does this mean for the future of the business? Read the full story here.

Sportswear chain in 20% share slump

Dick's store
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One US retailer that's bearing the brunt of Wall Street's share slide at the moment is Dick's Sporting Goods, down more than 20%. The sportswear chain's second-quarter sales and profits missed analysts' estimates, because of stiff competition and weak demand.

"We will be more promotional and increase our marketing efforts for the remainder of the year, as we will aggressively protect our market share," said chief executive Edward Stack.

Drones to get privacy mode

DJI Go app
DJI

The world's best-selling drone-maker is adding a privacy mode to its aircraft to prevent flight data being shared to the internet.

The announcement comes a fortnight after it emerged that the US Army had prohibited its troops from using the Chinese firm's equipment because of unspecified cyber-security concerns.

DJI told the BBC that it had already been working on the new facility, but had speeded up development after the ban.

The mode should be launched next month.

Read the full story here.

US stocks run out of energy

Stock market trader
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US stock markets seem to have run out of steam.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is now ahead 6.60 points at 22,000.31.

The S&P 500 is marginally lower at 2,465.40 as is the Nasdaq at 6,339.30.

Omar Aguilar, chief investment officer for equities at Charles Schwab Investment Management, said: "Once you have a good lift in the market like yesterday, it's going to take a little more confidence that it can be sustained, especially at the valuations we're at.

"We need to have a little more calm down on the political front and geopolitical side."

Laura Ashley shares plunge on warning

Shares in Laura Ashley plunged on Tuesday after the retailer warned on full-year profit.

It said that it will take a £2.8m charge following a revaluation of its property. It also said that trading conditions have continued to be "demanding".

As a consequence, it said it expects profit to be "materially below market expectations"..

Laura Ashley share price
BBC

'Tiffany' rings leave Costco with big bill

easyJet lifts FTSE 100

easyJet tail
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The FTSE 100 has closed up 29.96 points at 7,383.85.

easyJet share price was Tuesday's biggest riser, 4.5% at £13.22. Sub-prime lender Provident Financial led the fallers when its share price fell 3.7% at £18.82.

The FTSE 250 finished up 2.34 points at 19,694.81.

BreakingManufacturing alliance chief resigns from Trump council

Scott Paul, president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, has announced that he is resigning from US President Donald Trump's manufacturing initiative.

View more on twitter

Angry Birds fly high for Rovio

Angry Birds balloon
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There's life in the old bird yet.

Rovio Entertainment, the Finnish company behind the computer game Angry Birds, announced that its interim sales almost doubled from 78.5m euros to 152.6m euros, thanks to the film industry.

The Angry Birds Movie has given the brand a boost and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation have also grown from 11m euros to 41.8m euros.

It is now planning a sequel to the Angry Birds movie, which is scheduled for release in 2019.

China long-term growth at risk from rising debt

Child with China flag
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The International Monetary Fund has warned on China's long-term economic health.

While it has raised its forecast for China's GDP growth from 6% to 6.4% from 2018 to 2020, the IMF highlighted the long term risk of "further large increases in public and private debt".

In a report, the IMF said: "International experience suggests that China's current credit trajectory is dangerous with increasing risks of a disruptive adjustment and/or a marked growth slowdown."

Trump responds to council resignations

The President of the United States tweets...

Sterling dips on dollar and euro

The pound remains down on the dollar, off 0.77% at $1.28650.

Sterling has also fallen 0.23% on the euro to 1.09800 euros.

Uber settles data privacy claims

Uber app
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Uber, the taxi hailing company, has agreed to have its data privacy measures audited for the next 20 years as part of a settlement.

The US Federal Trade Commission said Uber had "deceived consumers" by failing to monitor employee access to customer information and by not securing that data.

The FTC's acting chairwoman Maureen Ohlhausen, said: “This case shows that, even if you’re a fast growing company, you can’t leave consumers behind: you must honor your privacy and security promises.”

Read the full statement here.

The death of retirement?

China demand weighs on oil prices

Oil prices have fallen, with Brent crude hovering close to $50 a barrel.

It fell by 1% to $50.23 a barrel. West Texas Intermediate is off 0.8% at $47.21.

A fall in the amount of oil being refined in China - the world's second largest economy - continued to weigh on prices.

Hans van Cleef, senior energy economist at Dutch bank ABN Amro, said: "The focus remains on OPEC, US inventories and disappointing China demand.

"Those concerns have triggered profit-taking after a strong run-up in July."

BT hangs up on telephone boxes

Telephone boxes
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BT is planning to scrap half of its remaining telephone boxes in the UK and instead place them in locations where people are most likely to use them.

Somewhat surprisingly, telephone boxes still handle 33,000 calls a day though one third of the kiosks are never used.

BT will get rid of 20,000 telephone boxes over the next five years.

Retail therapy boosts US outlook

US shopping
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US retail sales data has given markets a boost.

Following the forecast-beating 0.6% monthly rise in July, Sal Guatieri, a senior economist at BMO Capital Markets, said: "American shoppers flocked to the malls and even department stores in July, suggesting consumers are well-positioned to propel the economy forward in the second half of the year."

A league of their own

Time to take a stand?

Donald Trump
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There is an interesting opinion piece in the Financial Times on Tuesday by noted economist Larry Summers.

He asks why more company bosses are not following Ken Frazier's example by resigning from Donald Trump's advisory councils.

It should be noted that Mr Summers served under Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama.

However, he raises points worthy of debate about when businesses and their leaders should take a stand.

Take a look.

US stock markets open up

The Dow Jones Industrial Average has opened 34.50 points ahead at 22,028.21.

The S&P 500 is up 2.26 points at 2,468.10.

The Nasdaq gained 5.97 points to 6,346.20 in the opening minutes of trade.

Intel and Under Armour bosses quit Trump council

In case you missed it last night, two more chief executives resigned from the Presidential Committee on American Manufacturing.

Brian Krzanich, chief executive of US chip giant Intel, said in a strongly worded blog that he left the committee "to call attention to the serious harm our divided political climate is causing to critical issues".

While Kevin Plank, the founder and chief executive of sportswear maker Under Armour, also resigned.

View more on twitter

Their announcements follow that of Ken Frazier, chairman and chief executive of US drugs giant Merck, who resigned from the committee following the attacks by white supremacists in Charlottesville at the weekend which left one women, Heather Heyer, dead and 19 injured.

Mr Frazier was immediately attacked by Donald Trump who accused him of "rip off drug prices".

Demand for cars drives US retail sales

Ford cars
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It was spend, spend, spend for Americans last month.

Retail sales rose by 0.6% between June and July to $478.9bn, ahead of expectations of a 0.3% increase.

The US Commerce Department also said that sales rose by 4.2% compared to July last year.

Cars and construction materials drove growth while department stores also reported a pick up.

UK proposes untested customs union

Cargo ship
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The government says it will propose an "innovative and untested approach" to customs checks as part of its Brexit negotiations.

The model, one of two being put forward in a newly-published paper, would mean no customs checks at UK-EU borders.

The UK's alternative proposal - a more efficient system of border checks - would involve "an increase in administration", it admits.

A key EU figure said the idea of "invisible borders" was a "fantasy".

Read the full story here.

How partition affected India sweets firm

All employers 'should offer flexible hours'

A mother with her son
Thinkstock

All British employers should offer flexible hours to both sexes to make life fairer for working parents, the country's equality watchdog has said.

Job shares and working from home are key to boost women's salaries, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) said, noting British women earn 18% less than men for the same job.

"We need to overhaul our culture and make flexible working the norm - looking beyond women as the primary caregivers and having tough conversations about the biases that are rife in our workforce and society," said Caroline Waters, EHRC's deputy chairwoman.