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The Power Brief

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Dina Rudick | The Boston Globe | Getty Images

A daily morning look at the financial stories you need to know to start the day

STOCKS/ECONOMY

-Stock futures are lower after yesterday's flat day. The now much-watched , (or much-feared), April retail sales report comes out at 830am Eastern as does the report on wholesale inflation.

-The retail jitters are being pushed higher by bad results from Nordstrom and Kohl's.

OIL/ENERGY

-Crude prices are down but still at the $46/barrel level.

-Gasoline prices rose more than a penny overnight to $2.21/gallon, national average.

-A Shell pipeline has been breached somehow and is pouring crude oil into the waters off Louisiana.

ELECTION

-The latest nationwide poll shows Donald Trump just one percentage point behind Hillary Clinton, 41%-40%.

-Trump is going after Amazon CEO and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos. After news surfaced Wednesday that the Post is using 20 reporters just to dig up dirt on Trump's past, Trump told Sean Hannity that Bezos is breaking tax, lobbying, and antitrust laws.

-Las Vegas billionaire Sheldon Adelson has written an op/ed in today's Washington Post endorsing Trump.

-The Clinton Global Fund is under scrutiny after several reports showed it funneled money to the Clintons' friends.

-Mexico says that if Donald Trump or anyone else blocks remittance payments from the US, it will retaliate by refusing to continue to cooperate with joint anti-money laundering and anti-drug efforts.

-The Clinton team is spending $1 million to pay people to support and defend Mrs.Clinton on social media. But judging by the likely fact that social media is where this election will be decided, perhaps this is under-budgeted?

-Former White House Budget Director David Stockman says the next president will not be able to stop a recession.

FACEBOOK BIAS

-Facebook employee guidelines published by the Guardian newspaper today clearly contradict Facebook's denials that it favors more liberal news sources for its "trending" section.

-But late yesterday, Mark Zuckerberg said Facebook is looking into possible bias.

HEALTHCARE

-Obamacare was dealt a potentially devastating blow by a federal judge yesterday who ruled the government has no legal right to reimburse insurers who subsidize plans for poorer Americans. Without those subsides, it's hard to see how the private insurers will remain in Obamacare. The case will be appealed.

TAXI WARS

-China's Uber rival, Didi, is ramping up investor funding. The latest big investor is Apple with a $1 billion stake. But the larger story may be that China is increasingly making its own versions of foreign businesses, and that could wreck the dreams of many a corporation hoping to make big money off of the huge Chinese consumer population.

MOVING AMERICA

-A House committee slammed the TSA for long airport lines, paying big dubious bonuses, and retaliating against whistleblowers.

DEFENSE

-If elected, Donald Trump wants to privatize VA healthcare.

-Lockheed Martin is getting a $3 billion order from Denmark for 27 F-35 fighter jets.