EU BRINGS APPLE MORE SCRUTINY
LAWMAKERS TO OFFSET HIGH COST OF COLLEGE IN NJ
When the European Union's antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager ruled this week that Apple Inc owed billion of euros in alleged unpaid taxes, the decision create a financial and public relations problem for the technology giant. It also opened up a Pandora's box of legal questions for Apple and other multinationals operating in Europe.
Apple has said it would appeal the decision. The finance minister for Ireland, which the European Commission accused of violating the bloc's rules against selective "state aid" by forging a sweetheart tax deal with Apple, has also recommended the government lodge an appeal. Legal challenges could take years. The decision also opens the door to further scrutiny of Apple finances , legal structure and tax payments by national governments across the continent. Ms Vestager specifically invited them to do so, saying governmetns in Europe, as well as the US could claim a piece of teh $14.5 billion in tqxes that the commission has estimated Apple avoided paying in Europe and has ordered Dublin to recoup.
Ms Vestager's move to inspire other European governments to undertqake their own audits into how Apple paid taxes across Europe plays into the commission's wider startegy of amining to close down tax havens and loop in the bloc. The job of actually identifying any back taxes owed and getting it back into national coffers would be up to the respective national authorities.
Japan's economy will be lucky to show even a hint of growth this year. The combination of the strong yen and the lackluster pace of global growth is hammering Japan's export growth driven economy. Figure on 2016 GDP growth of .5% a dismal performance for the world's largest economy and another obstacle for US manufacturers looking for ways to boost their sales to Asian customers. The Japanese government is the most indebted in the world, Yet the yen is up 20% versus the dollar this year. The country suffers from having a safe haven currency. Japanese lenders and financial firms act as bankers to the rest of the world. During times of stress in financial markets, they bring much of there money home, stoking demand for yen and lifting its value. Foreign investors also see it as a safe asset in bumpy markets.
The Zika virus is creating headaches for US firms that export to China, thanks to Beijing's new rule that exporters must certify that cargo and containers are free of mosquitoes, which can carry the disease. The reg is expecially onerous for agricutlural producers, whose shipments can be vulnerable to insectcide sprays. Plus the need to fumigate adds $30 or more to the cost of transporting a container. Some relief for shippers could be on the way as China considers requests from exporters to narrow the mandate to shipments originating from Southern ports.So far, Fla is the only state to report cases of mosquitro-transmitted Zika infections. Any further spread of Zika in the US will be costly to shippers.
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Calling the price of New Jersey colleges a threat to the state's future. Democratic lawmakers on Wednesday called for income tax deductions for interest paid on student loans, more sate financial aid, a three year degrees and other initiatives aimed at saving students money. The proposal, which stem from a government task force report on college affordability were unveiled by sate Senate President Sweeney and Sen Sandra Cunningham. The two will introduce a package of 11 bills today aimed at making college more affordable in a sate with some of the nation's expensive public colleges. New Jersey has long been known as a high-tuition, high aid state, meaning it has expensive colleges but offers generous fianancial aid packages. However, many of the grants available are for either high performing or low income students, leaving middle class familes with steep tuition bills and mountains of debt
GOAL IS SMOOTH
Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co is seeking a buyer for its software unit in a deal that could be valued at as much as $10 billion, a person familar with the matter said, the latest in a series of moves by the big name technology vendor to narrow its focus. Such a transaction would, among other things, ikely end the company's association with the fomer operations of Autonomy Corp, a British software maker acquired in 2011 for $11 billion in a deal widely regarded as a mistake. HP Enterprise is seeking a price in the range of $8 billion and $10 billion for the software unit. Reuters reported deal talks at those values with buyout firms that include Thoma Bravo LLC
HPE SEEKS BUYER FOR SOFTWARE BUSINESS