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The U.S. budget deficit widened by 23% to $747 billion in the first nine months of the fiscal year, a chasm tied to Republican tax cuts that largely benefited corporations and the rich. Government spending increased to $3.36 trillion, up 6.6% from a year earlier. But Wall Street stayed sanguine: The Dow surpassed 27,000 for the first time, following Wednesday’s record 3,000 mark for the S&P 500. 

Here are today’s top stories

Investors may be certain that a Fed rate cut is coming this month, but two regional Fed chiefs say a reduction may not be necessary.

Complicating the clamor to cut is some pesky data. A key measure of U.S. consumer prices rose more than forecast in June, potentially complicating the Fed’s assessment of inflation.

If you like dairy but don’t like the damage industrial farming does to the planet, your only choices are products like almond milk or cashew “butter.” Soon, there may be another option: Lab grown dairy.

Soda doesn’t just threaten your waistline. Drinking sweet beverages, including fruit juices, could be linked to a higher risk of cancer.U.S. President Donald Trump changed his mind again about whether, and how, to find a way around the U.S. Supreme Court ruling rejecting his effort to put a citizenship question on the 2020 Census.

Accused sex-trafficker Jeffrey Epstein moved $46 million in assets to a foundation affiliated with the family of Les Wexner in 2008, months after Epstein was charged with soliciting prostitution. In New York this week, Epstein asked to be released on bail while awaiting trial on new charges.

What’s Tracy Alloway thinking? The Bloomberg executive editor says that Taiwan is the fastest-growing market for exchange-traded funds. The country’s ETF market has grown 67% this year alone, faster than in the U.S. or in China. What accounts for the growth? Read this story. 

What you’ll need to know tomorrow

  • Bitcoin ATMs may show a gap in EU money laundering rules.
  • Germany sees a 50-50 chance of an EU-U.S. trade deal.
  • This soaring IPO minted a $1.5 billion fortune for a fashion duo.
  • The British Navy interceded to protect a tanker from Iranian boats.
  • Businessweek says Chevron plays the long game in Venezuela.
  • Aubrey McClendon’s stake in the NBA’s Thunder is for sale.
  • You should mix red wine with soda. Seriously.

What you’ll want to read tonight

Ali Ahamed’s black satchel was overflowing with turtles, their tiny heads poking out. Just a few feet away, on the hotel room floor, roughly 20 larger turtles with dark brown shells were removed from black suitcases and flipped onto their backs to keep them from crawling under the couch. Ahamed had arrived in Kuala Lumpur to meet with his buyer, who had discovered the turtle broker through Facebook’s social network.


To contact the author of this story: David Rovella in New York at drovella@bloomberg.net

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