×

The Power Brief

John Macdougall | AFP | Getty Images

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

STOCKS/ECONOMY

-Stock futures are a bit down. The major indices are on their first 4-week losing streak since 2014.

-One member of the Fed's Open Market Committee says the US economy is very close to meeting all the requirements for a June rate hike.

-IBM is starting a new round of layoffs that could top 14,000 job cuts.

OIL/ENERGY

-Crude prices are more than 1% down and back below the $48/barrel level.

-Gasoline prices are up to $2.28/gallon, national average. That's 15 cents/gallon more than a month ago today.

-Saudi Arabia's biggest move to diversify its economy away from just oil may have happened: a $1.4 billion deal with GE has just been announced. But there are few details about what the deal entails.

DEALS/NO DEALS

-Now we know how much Bayer is bidding for Monsanto: $62 billion. That's $20 billion over Monsanto's estimated value and the Bayer shareholders don't like it; Bayer's shares are taking a beating in Europe. Monsanto shares are higher.

-Tribune is rejecting Gannett's latest offer to buy the company.

ELECTION

-Hillary Clinton's poll numbers are collapsing. She's now only leading Donald Trump by 3 points in the NBC News/WSJ poll and trails Trump by 2 points in the ABC News/Washington Post poll. In both polls, Mrs. Clinton's lead had been 11 points just last month.

-Bernie Sanders is adding more fuel to the fire in his fight with the Democratic Party establishment. He's now backing the primary opponent for DNC Chair/Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

DEFENSE

-President Obama has announced the US will lift the ban on selling US arms to Vietnam. This is something American defense contractors had been calling for.

-Taliban leader Mullah Mansour has been killed in a US air strike.

-The Iraqi army us starting to fight ISIS in Fallujah.

-Even if Congress approves the bigger pay raise for the troops this year, serious benefit cuts in housing, food, and healthcare will squeeze military personnel and their families.

MOVING AMERICA

-The head of the TSA says long airport security lines will continue to be a problem throughout the summer and will often be worse than they are now.

PENSION DISASTER

-Now that the Treasury has rejected the Central States pension reduction plan, Jack Lew and others are calling on Congress to save the pensions for hundreds of thousands of retirees.