On The Money: US files complaints at WTO | House leaders get deal to boost biz investment | Mnuchin says US will consider Iran sanctions waivers | FCC deals blow to Sinclair-Tribune merger

On The Money: US files complaints at WTO | House leaders get deal to boost biz investment | Mnuchin says US will consider Iran sanctions waivers | FCC deals blow to Sinclair-Tribune merger
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Happy Monday and welcome back to On The Money, where we're still trying to wrap our heads around what happened in Helsinki today. I'm Sylvan Lane, and here's your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line.

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THE BIG DEAL--U.S. files complaints against trading partners: The United States on Monday launched five separate trade disputes at the World Trade Organization (WTO) challenging trade partners' retaliatory tariffs.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert LighthizerBob LighthizerWhiskey, workers and friends caught in the trade dispute crossfire GOP senator warns quick vote on new NAFTA would be 'huge mistake' Pelosi casts doubt on USMCA deal in 2019 MORE said the U.S. is filing cases against China, the European Union, Canada, Mexico and Turkey after each imposed new tariffs on U.S. exports in response to President TrumpDonald TrumpEx-DOJ official Rosenstein says he was not aware of subpoena targeting Democrats: report Ex-Biden adviser says Birx told him she hoped election turned out 'a certain way' Cheney rips Arizona election audit: 'It is an effort to subvert democracy' MORE slapping steep tariffs on aluminum and steel over national security interests.

"The actions taken by the president are wholly legitimate and fully justified as a matter of U.S. law and international trade rules," Lighthizer said in a statement.

"Instead of working with us to address a common problem, some of our trading partners have elected to respond with retaliatory tariffs designed to punish American workers, farmers and companies," he said.

Lighthizer said that the retaliatory tariffs "appear to breach" WTO rules. The Hill's Vicki Needham explains why here.


China also filed a complaint against the U.S at the WTO on Monday, challenging Trump's proposed tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods.





Mnuchin says US will consider waivers for Iran oil sanctions: Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinDemocrats justified in filibustering GOP, says Schumer Yellen provides signature for paper currency Biden's name will not appear on stimulus checks, White House says MORE reportedly said the Trump administration would consider temporarily exempting some countries from reimposed sanctions on Iranian oil imports.

Mnuchin told reporters in Mexico on Friday that the administration would consider granting sanctions waivers to countries struggling to wind down imports of Iranian oil before the penalties take effect on Nov. 4, according to Reuters

"We want people to reduce oil purchases to zero, but in certain cases if people can't do that overnight, we'll consider exceptions," Mnuchin said.

The Trump administration has begun the process of imposing economic sanctions on Iran that were suspended under the 2015 Iran nuclear weapons agreement signed by former President Obama. The agreement, which is not a formal treaty ratified by Congress, gave Iran relief from economic sanctions for scaling back its nuclear weapons capabilities.

Mnuchin said that the U.S. wouldn't issue blanket waivers, but would be flexible in cases where imposing sanctions could do major economic damage.

"We want to be very careful in the wind-down around the energy markets to make sure that people have the time," Mnuchin said, according to Reuters. I've got more on his comments here.

House leaders strike bipartisan deal to boost business investment: The leaders of the House Financial Services Committee on Monday unveiled the details of a legislative package meant to boost investment in budding U.S. businesses.

Reps. Jeb HensarlingThomas (Jeb) Jeb HensarlingLawmakers battle over future of Ex-Im Bank House passes Ex-Im Bank reboot bill opposed by White House, McConnell Has Congress lost the ability or the will to pass a unanimous bipartisan small business bill? MORE (R-Texas) and Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersTulsa marks race massacre centennial as US grapples with racial injustice Fauci may have unwittingly made himself a key witness for Trump in 'China Flu' hate-speech case Of inmates and asylums: Today's House Republicans make the John Birchers look quaint MORE (D-Calif.), the chairman and ranking member, respectively, said Monday that they had agreed to combine 32 bills previously passed by their committee into a single measure. The package is intended to give small businesses and startups a cheaper and easier pathway to going public and fuel growth.

Each bill in the agreement dubbed the JOBS and Investor Confidence Act passed the House or Financial Services panel with almost no resistance. The House is scheduled to vote on the package Tuesday and will likely pass the measure with little opposition.

Senate leaders have pledged to hold a vote on the package, according to Hensarling, but it's unclear if and when that will happen. The bill would also need the support of at least 10 Senate Democrats to pass if all GOP senators support it, which could potentially sink the package. I'll tell you more about what's inside the deal and how it happened here.


MARKET CHECK: CNBC: "The major stock indexes, meanwhile, struggled for gains for most of the session as other large U.S. companies released their quarterly results.

"The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose just 44.95 points to 25,064.36 with Caterpillar, Johnson & Johnson and Exxon Mobil as the biggest laggards and J.P. Morgan Chase outperforming. The S&P 500 slipped 0.1 percent to 2,798.43 as a decline in energy stocks offset gains in financials. The Nasdaq Composite closed 0.3 percent lower at 7,805.72 as Amazon gave back most of its gains."