Update on the latest in business:

FINANCIAL MARKETS

Asian stocks follow Wall St lower on weak US services data

BEIJING (AP) — Asian stock markets have followed Wall Street lower after U.S. services activity weakened.

Market benchmarks in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Seoul declined. Shanghai advanced. Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index broke a seven-day streak of record closes and fell after the Institute of Supply Management reported service industry activity grew in June at a slower rate than forecast.

Shares of Chinese ride-hailing service Didi Global, which started trading on Wall Street last week, fell after Beijing said it would impose stricter information security rules on companies that want to join foreign stock exchanges.

PENTAGON-JEDI CONRACT

Pentagon cancels disputed JEDI cloud contract with Microsoft

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon says it’s canceled a cloud-computing contract with Microsoft that could eventually have been worth $10 billion. It will instead pursue a deal with both Microsoft and Amazon and possibly other cloud service providers.

The Pentagon says that with the shifting technology environment, the long-delayed JEDI Cloud contract doesn’t meet what’s now needed.

The statement Tuesday did not directly mention that the Pentagon faced extended legal challenges by Amazon. Amazon argued that the Microsoft award was tainted by politics, especially then-President Donald Trump’s antagonism toward Amazon’s chief executive officer, Jeff Bezos.

VIRUS OUTBREAK-CHINA

Chinese city on Myanmar border locked down in COVID outbreak

BEIJING (AP) — Authorities in a Chinese city bordering Myanmar locked down the city Wednesday as a fresh outbreak of COVID-19 expanded.

Health authorities said another 15 cases were found in Ruili in southwest China’s Yunnan prefecture, on top of six in the first two days. The lockdown took effect at midnight. It required residents to stay at home and shut down all businesses and public institutions except hospitals, pharmacies and essential shops like grocery stores. The positive cases include both Chinese and Myanmar nationals in the city, where there is an active border trade.

FLIGHTS-BELARUS

US finalizes ban on Belarus travel over forced landing

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. government is barring airlines from selling travel between the United States and Belarus except in limited cases.

The Transportation Department issued a final order Tuesday, upholding a proposal that the department announced last week. The move follows an incident in May in which Belarussian officials ordered a Ryanair flight to land in Belarus, where authorities removed and arrested a dissident journalist. President Joe Biden has called the incident “outrageous.” The ban on airlines selling travel between the two countries contains exceptions only for humanitarian or national security reasons.

JAPAN-NISSAN TRIAL

Nissan CEO tells Tokyo court Carlos Ghosn had too much power

TOKYO (AP) — Nissan Chief Executive Makoto Uchida has told a Japanese court that the company’s former chairman, Carlos Ghosn (gohn), had held too much power, failed to listen to others, and stayed on for too long. Uchida testified today that those factors led to financial misconduct charges for Ghosn.

Nissan as a corporate entity is standing trial on charges of having falsified securities reports in under-reporting Ghosn’s compensation. It does not contest the charges, But Ghosn says he is innocent.

He was arrested in 2018, but fled to Lebanon while out on bail. Greg Kelly, a former executive vice president at Nissan, also is on trial on charges of failing to fully report Ghosn’s compensation.

THAILAND-FACTORY EXPLOSION

2nd chemical fire at Bangkok factory highlights health risks

BANGKOK (AP) — Chemicals at a burned-out factory burst back into flames briefly, sending more toxic black smoke into the air around the Thai capital.

The new blaze highlighted the continuing health danger from an industrial accident that killed one person and injured dozens more.

Putting out the first fire took more than 24 hours. Firefighters doused the site with water and foam to keep the highly flammable chemicals from reigniting, but flames broke out again and burned for about an hour Tuesday afternoon. The air quality and water in the area of the factory was being tested before authorities decide to narrow the evacuation zone to allow some residents to return home.

WILMINGTON TRUST-BANK FRAUD

Feds dropping case against former Wilmington Trust execs

DOVER, Del. (AP) — Federal prosecutors in Delaware have decided not to retry four former executives for the only financial institution to be criminally charged in connection with the federal bank bailout program in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.

U.S. Attorney David Weiss said in statement Tuesday that his office has opted not to retry the former Wilmington Trust executives on fraud charges. The decision came after a January appeals court ruling that reversed the convictions of the former bank executives for making false statements to federal regulators and ordered that acquittals be entered. The court also ordered a retrial of conspiracy and securities fraud charges.

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